It is both the qualifier, the tournament! So, no matter what this League of Nations could be called as, but it is just not a friendly one. And for this reason, UEFA would be very upset. The squad has gone to a good level of lengths to build a claimant that would incentivize the players and the national teams to take the first batch of international play seriously. They want players to take this seriously after the World Cup. Though, we couldn’t speak for any players as well as the Chelsea players, but as of now we think that the gravity of the event is not there in teams yet. So, that will give American soccer Twitter enough to banter about.
On the opening day of the event Germany host France, which brought Antonio Rudiger, N’Golo Kante and Olivier Giroud together in Munich. Talk about the Rudiger, and then he began his international career around four years ago. It was the early qualifying rounds of Euro 2016. That time he had small appearances on the both sides of the World Cup 2014, however, he wasn’t able to make his competitive debut for Germany until the loss of 2-0 Poland that October.
Chelsea are reportedly looking to drop last season addition Danny Drinkwater this summer. The 28-year old has struggled to make his impact at the club since joining. It is believed that Chelsea want to sell him off to help raise cash to acquire Nice midfielder Jean Michael Seri.
Drinkwater was part of the Leicester team that shocked the world when they lifted the Premier League in 2016. Coach Antonio Conte signed him to boost the depth of the squad but the club is looking at cutting him loose after being deemed surplus to requirements. The player has barely made him mark since moving to the club.
Recently Liverpool had lost a match to Real Madrid in a home game. There has been a lot of disappointment after the match and so has it come from the star Jamie Carragher. He expressed it as it is very difficult to accept that you got beaten up by a better side and that in a home match. You just cannot admit that you were not the best but rather the second best. However, the vice-captain for Liverpool has been clearing all doubts and has said that they were focusing on something totally different. He said that they needed to concentrate on getting a clean sheet in all the upcoming matches. They are focusing in going in the right direction irrespective of the match points. They do not even mind losing or dropping points if circumstances demand so.
Jamie Carragher wants to show his disappointment regarding the same and wants to point this to the team. He is judging the moment and thinks that it is the best time to talk it out. And he thinks that it might be like first stepping stone for the team towards recovery.
The defence of Liverpool had always been a plus point and an advantage for them and scoring goals was not the thing they had to keep in mind. But now that players like Suarez are not in the team you cannot neglect the importance of goals. The defence strategy of Liverpool has also been exposed and everyone knows about it. Most of us would agree with Jamie having said that the team was making simple errors but a lot of them. He believes the team should get back to the basic and simple training and for the season get clean sheets which would benefit them. So, it is time for Liverpool to go back and learn and regain their strengths before time runs out.
Crystal Palace manager Neil Warnock said that he is extremely unhappy with the refereeing decisions in the recent 2-2 draw with West Brom. Crystal Palace looked set to take three points and return to winning ways after they were leading 2-0 against the club from Midlands. West Brom, however, came back into the match in spectacular fashion after managing their first goal in the 51st minute through former Everton striker Victor Anichebe. Berahino, who has been a sensational hit so far in the Premier League, managed to convert an injury time penalty to give his team a brilliant point.
This was the second consecutive 2-2 draw for Alan Irvine’s team after they managed a similar score against Manchester United last week. However, he will have no reasons to complain after his team produced a stunning response to the opposition. The fact that this match was at home also helped West Brom to some extent. For Crystal Palace, this was yet another disappointing result after they had lost to Chelsea last week. They were hoping to comeback to form with three points, which looked almost certain going into the half-time break. Former Fulham defender Hangeland and Jedinak scored the goals for the Londoners the first half.
“I’m the only guy that can protect him, not the physios. He got smashed, absolutely smashed. I don’t even think he knew he wanted to stay on. If officials can’t see a smash like that then I’ve got to protect my goalkeeper. [West Brom will] think ‘we’ve got away with it once, we’ll do it again’. I’m not prepared to let Julian take two smashes like that. It’s almost an assault. He comes from two or three yards away and smashes him in the face. I don’t understand why at least one of the officials can’t see that,” said Warnock.
Jose Mourinho’s mentor Louis van Gaal has had a tough start to life at Manchester United, as he still searching for his first victory despite having played four matches. The Dutchman is still regarded with a lot of respect by Mourinho, who worked with him at several clubs previously before becoming a manager. The two famously came up against each other in the 2010 Champions League final in which the student managed to put one over his teacher. Mourinho is yet to face Van Gaal since the Dutchman came to United.
The Portuguese, though, that he is confident that Van Gaal will be able to turn things around at Old Trafford. Manchester United ended up being as one of the highest spenders of all-time in a transfer window after managing to splash more than £ 150 million on players like Angel di Maria and Radamel Falcao. As a result, the squad has been substantially strengthened in several areas of the pitch, although some pundits say that United have brought in more attacking players than defensive minded individuals.
The defence has been a major issue for Van Gaal in the opening two matches, as he has seen his team keep only one clean sheet during this period. Mourinho, who often enjoys good starts, says that Van Gaal is more than experienced to deal with the situation.
“He is one of the best managers in the world so I think he is a man with great experience for the job. Manchester United is a big team [and] he is a big manager so I think they will do well together. It’s a direction we tried to establish since the beginning of last season, but our squad now is different. We have different qualities now in our players. Are we going to lose matches? Obviously, yes, but in this moment we are getting results and we are enjoying our style of play,” said Mourinho.
Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea team suffered a disappointment in the final pre-season friendly match against Werder Bremen after losing the match 3-0. The blues conceded two penalties in the 90 minutes, while they also allowed the opposition to score a soft goal. After the match, the Portuguese boss was extremely disappointed with the refereeing, as he felt that the two penalties were extremely soft as well. The first penalty was awarded for handball by John Terry, while Nathan Ake’s tackle in the second half lead to the second penalty. However, both these decisions could be 50-50 and Mourinho felt that it was unlikely that it went against his team.
Mourinho is looking to win his first major title in two years. He finished his last season at Real Madrid without a major trophy and this was followed by another trophyless campaign at Chelsea last season. Speaking before the match, he said that he has come close to winning titles during this period. He also appeared to lose this famed control during the press conference when suggested repeatedly that he has not won titles in the last two seasons. Chelsea will be looking to put this defeat behind them, as the start of the Premier League comes closer. The blues will be taking on Burnley in the opening match of the season.
“I learned nothing from this game. Our expectations are not fulfilled because when we decided to have this match here in Bremen we thought about an evolution in difficulty. We were expecting a fast game a competitive game but we come here and the referee thought this was a circus for Bremen fans – for them to have fun – and he killed the match. This game for us would have been perfect. The opponent is perfect for is to compete today but we couldn’t play,” said Mourinho.
Premier League giants Chelsea has agreed a fee to bring Atletico Madrid left back Felipe Luis to Stamford Bridge.
The 28 year old Brazilian international has been a long term target for the Premier League giants and with Ashley Cole confirming his move to AS Roma yesterday, the club pulled no punches in thrashing out a deal for the player with the Spanish champions.
The 28 year old will now be given permission to discuss personal teams with the Blues, agreeing which, he will be have to go through a medical before officially becoming a player for the club.
Luis was one of the stars for Atletico last season, as they won their first Spanish championship since 1996 and also reached the finals of the UEFA Champions League, losing out to arch rivals Real Madrid in extra time. Continue reading
Chelsea’s Eden Hazard picked up an injury during their Champions League quarterfinal match against PSG. It still remains unknown when the Belgium player will be back in action for his club but according to the first-team coach Steve Holland, he could return sooner rather than later.
“Every player is fit at this stage, with the exception of Eden, who should be sooner rather than later. It is still a little bit too early to say for sure. Having a clear week this week is a big advantage.” Continue reading
Football pundit Glenn Hoddle feels that Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho got his tactics wrong in the Champions League quarter-final match against PSG. Chelsea suffered a 3-1 defeat in the first leg against the French outfit and it has put them on the brink of exit from the competition. Mourinho surprised everyone by naming Andre Schurrle ahead of Fernando Torres as the striker. The Portuguese manager was without Samuel Eto’o, who was ruled out with a hamstring injury, but many expected him to start either with Torres or Demba Ba.
The plan did not make much sense because Schurrle was struggling to get into the match. He was drifting all over the place, which did not help Chelsea to keep the ball. After letting in a goal just three minutes into the first half, Chelsea managed to get back into the match through a penalty from Eden Hazard. However, bad defending from the likes of Cesar Azpilicueta and David Luiz made Chelsea concede two second-half goals, which has put their place in the semifinals in major doubt. Even though they have the second leg yet to come and with an away goal, pundits feel that Chelsea are almost out of the competition.
Hoddle says that Mourinho should have started with Torres rather than Schurrle.
“I don’t think Schurrle playing up front worked. Obviously Mourinho took him off, but I think that was one where he took a risk and it didn’t work. It backfired on him and they had no focus really in the second half. But you’ve got to give credit to Paris Saint-Germain. They probably weren’t happy with the way they were playing after they went 1-0 up and they had a good reaction,” said Hoddle. The second leg will be at Stamford Bridge next week, but PSG want to remain as underdogs.
They currently sit atop the Premier League table, nine points clear of the ‘favourites’ for the title and most recently completed a 4-0 demolition of one of their prime London rivals in Tottenham Hotspur; Chelsea and Jose Mourinho can simply no longer deny they are the favourites for the Premier League title this year. With just nine games left of their season, Chelsea can begin to implement the one game at a time philosophy and use the star power in their ranks to widen the four point gulf that currently sets them apart from second-placed Liverpool.
Sure, Man City have been the bookies’ favourites all season long until last weekend, having only just drifted out to an average 15/8 in the market. The Citizens also have three games in hand to recover the nine point gap they are currently facing and should they achieve maximum points they will almost certainly move back into pole position for the title. Continue reading