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Salah insists he is happy at Liverpool after Real Madrid speculation

The Kop star has enjoyed a sensational debut season for the Reds as he fired in 43 goals to help them to the reach the Champions League final.

Salah, 25, will now aim to gun down Real Madrid in the Kiev decider on May 26.

He is also going up against the team that the Spanish media believe want to sign him this summer.

But Salah is focused on the final and reckons the Reds can achieve success beyond the Champions League this season.

The Egyptian ace said: “I’m very happy here, I’m very happy and everything is fine.

“We have two games now starting with a game on Sunday (against Brighton).

“It’s a very important game and then Champions League final but I’m very happy here.

“Of course I have got ambitions for the future with Liverpool. As you can see we had a great season and now we are in the Champions League final and everyone is excited.

“It is just the start. This is my first year here and it is the same for some other players.

“I didn’t watch all the games last season of the team but this year we have had an unbelievable year.

“We are very comfortable about playing in the Champions League next season. On the way to the final we beat top teams like Man City and Roma.

“It is just the beginning.”

Salah was speaking at Liverpool’s Players’ Awards at Anfield on Thursday night.

He picked up the First Team Player of the Year award and the Players’ Player of the Year gong at the event.

Salah then rushed off to catch a private jet to get to the Football Writers’ Association dinner at the Landmark Hotel in London where he also picked the top prize.

The Kop attacker will then hope to fire the Reds over the line in the top four race on Sunday against Brighton.

The Reds just need to avoid defeat at Anfield to keep rivals Chelsea out of the Champions League for next season before they head to Kiev.

Salah added: “I work hard to help my team. Now I want to finish the season in a good way.

“We want to qualify for the Champions League next season and then we want to win the Champions League final. We will play to win against Real Madrid.

“But for now we are thinking only about Brighton. Then we will have 14 days to prepare for the final.

“It’s always special to play in any final. We know it’s not going to be easy. But we will give 100% to win the game and I am very excited about it.”

 

 

Source: Dailystar.co.uk

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Sir Alex Ferguson leaves intensive care following brain surgery

Manchester United have confirmed the next step in Sir Alex Ferguson’s recovery from a brain haemorrhage, the former manager having left intensive care.

Rushed to surgery on Saturday, the 83-year-old remains in hospital and will be continually monitored after the successful intervention.

“Sir Alex no longer needs intensive care and will continue rehabilitation as an inpatient,” read a United statement on Wednesday night.

“His family have been overwhelmed by the level of support and good wishes but continue to request privacy as this will be vital during this next stage of recovery.”

 

 

Source: Marca.com

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Paul Pogba on important Man Utd responsibility this season

It hasn’t been a straight-forward campaign for Man Utd midfielder Paul Pogba, but he is seemingly reflecting on it with a positive outlook.

The French midfielder has had his highs and lows over the course of the season. From his double against Manchester City at the Etihad to being substituted off early in games by Jose Mourinho as he seemingly struggled to have a positive influence.

Coupled with his £89m price-tag that United splashed out in 2016, as per BBC Sport, expectations have been high over the French international’s impact on his return to Old Trafford, and overall, it could be argued that he has failed to reach the expected level on a consistent basis.

The 25-year-old has scored six goals and provided 12 assists in 34 appearances in all competitions, but perhaps it’s unfair to judge him on those figures. However, it’s questionable as to whether he’s done enough in general to avoid criticism.

Whether that’s his issue in not being able to adapt and stamp his authority on games or Mourinho’s inability to get the best out of him or play him in his most effective role, it could be down to a whole host of reasons.

Nevertheless, he is seemingly content with his contribution this season, but it appears as though receiving the captain’s armband has been a major plus point for him as he has specifically reflected on that with happiness.

“It’s good that the manager believes in you, and the players,” he is quoted as saying by the Manchester Evening News. “It’s an honour to wear the captain’s [armband], and just to wear the shirt and play at Old Trafford. I was here in the Academy and for me it was a dream to play for the first-team, and I did it.

“So yeah, I’m very proud.”

Perhaps he is judged to a different standard, but it will be down to Pogba to improve and develop further next season to ensure United can bridge the gap to rivals Manchester City in the Premier League title race and improve on their showing in the Champions League this season and emerge as captain material on a more regular basis.

 

 

Source: Caughtoffside.com

 

 

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Paul Merson Says Jose Mourinho has huge selection decision ahead of West Ham

That’s according to Sky Sports pundit Paul Merson.

Injuries forced the Portuguese to make wholesale changes for Friday’s clash at Brighton as he challenged his reserve players to prove they’re worth a place in the FA Cup final.

But United were disappointing as they lost 1-0 in a frustrating evening on the south coast.

The Red Devils have two Premier League matches remaining, giving Mourinho ample time to assess who he wants playing against Chelsea at Wembley later this month.

And Merson has urged him not to take West Ham lightly as they’ll be desperate to beat them, despite already being mathematically safe from relegation.

“No game is a dead rubber when you play for Manchester United, everyone wants to beat them,” he said.

“And United need to start getting going as it is a bit worrying for them.

“You look at their squad and think it is big, and then they make a lorry load of changes and never look like beating Brighton.

“So I think this is a big football match for them and you are looking at players here and you start questing are they good enough to play for United?Jose Mourinho

“And what Jose Mourinho said after the Brighton game was spot on – people thought it was a bit harsh, but I did not think so.

“These lads were given a chance, but they looked like they were thinking, ‘We are only playing because he has made changes for next week, when we won’t be playing.

“And you can’t go out with that attitude. West Ham have gone great, but I have to go for a response here and I would be shocked if there was not one, so I am going to go 2-1 United.

“They cannot go into the Cup final playing like this – you can’t just turn it on and off like a tap.”

 

 

Source: Dailystar.co.uk

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Arsenal 5 - 0 Burnley: Rampant Arsenal give Arsene Wenger a five-star goodbye

Arsenal gave Arsene Wenger a memorable Emirates Stadium send-off as the outgoing boss saw his side thrash Burnley.

The Gunners were too strong for a side who could have easily spoilt Wenger’s final home game in charge, with his tenure as Arsenal manager coming to a close at the end of the campaign.

Instead, they outclassed Burnley and ran out comfortable 5-0 winners as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang grabbed a brace, with Alexandre Lacazette, Sead Kolasinac and Alex Iwobi also getting their names on the scoresheet.

The most recent meetings between these two sides have been close-fought affairs and, with just three points separating the pair heading into this game, it looked set to be a similar story.

But Wenger’s players rose to the occasions and gave their long-serving boss a fond farewell to a stadium built in his image.

The mere fact the club are battling with Sean Dyche’s men for sixth in the Premier League and have no chance of silverware in Wenger’s final campaign is clearly one of the reasons a new man will be sought to bring success.

But whomever is named as Wenger’s replacement will be buoyed by the attacking performances of Lacazette, Aubameyang and Henrikh Mkhitaryan, with Mesut Ozil not featuring due to a back injury.

The trio were too strong for the visitors as the on-field display matched the effort made by the club to toast Wenger’s departure – free T-shirts for every supporter, a commemorative programme and a guard of honour before the game giving the day a special feeling.

Arsenal needed less than 15 minutes to get Wenger out of his seat and celebrating the opening goal.

Lacazette exchanged passes with Iwobi before firing across goal, where Aubameyang slid in to put the Gunners ahead.

With majority owner Stan Kroenke in attendance, Arsenal were fairly at ease as Burnley’s task was made more difficult following a shoulder injury to Ashley Barnes which forced him off.

Mkhitaryan fired just over the crossbar having been picked out by Lacazette before the former Manchester United man saw an effort deflected off Stephen Ward and saved by the legs of Clarets goalkeeper Nick Pope.

The second Arsenal goal came in first-half stoppage time as Iwobi fed Hector Bellerin, whose cutback was perfect for Lacazette to sweep past Pope.

Burnley forced Petr Cech into his first meaningful save shortly after the interval as Sam Vokes, on for the injured Barnes, headed straight at the Arsenal keeper.

But it would be Wenger’s men who extended their lead as Jack Wilshere, whose own Arsenal future remains uncertain, rolled a pass into the path of Kolasinac for the full-back to rifle home the fifth goal of his debut season at the Emirates.

Mkhitaryan bent a shot inches wide just moments later, but Arsenal grabbed a fourth as Iwobi started and finished a slick move by thrashing in from 12 yards.

Wenger’s best sides were known for their entertainment and, while his current charges are some way off that mark, they continued the Frenchman’s goodbye as Aubameyang turned home his second of the game with 15 minutes remaining.

Wenger introduced Per Mertesacker in the closing stages, the 33-year-old also bowing out at the end of the season, albeit to take on a role in the youth-team set-up within the club.

Fellow substitute Danny Welbeck rattled the frame of the goal in the dying moments, with chants of ‘There’s only one Arsene Wenger’ filling the stadium as the full-time whistle blew.

 

 

Source: PA

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Danny Murphy and Craig Bellamy both think Liverpool will go on to win the Champions League as Real Madrid are “vulnerable”.

Liverpool booked a date with Real Madrid in the Champions League final on May 26, despite losing 4-2 in Roma, going through 7-6 on aggregate.

Despite a late rally from Roma to make the scoreline close, the visitors saw out a freakishly high-scoring tie to make their first Champions League final since 2007.

Between them, Liverpool and Real Madrid have got their hands on Europe’s big prize 17 times, with the La Liga side the current Champions League holders after winning the trophy in each of the last two seasons.

However, despite their lack of experience, former Liverpool star Murphy sees huge hope for Liverpool in Kiev later this month.

“I’m trying to underplay it, but they’ve got a hell of a chance,” Murphy said on The Debate.

“I don’t see Real Madrid play and not concede lots of chances. They might score but Liverpool will create so many chances in the game. I think if Liverpool could have chosen Real Madrid or Bayern Munich, they’d have chosen Madrid.

“I think it’s meant to be. There’s something about this Liverpool side and the way they play. Madrid’s performance at Tottenham keeps sticking in my head. They couldn’t handle the energy that Spurs played at – the strength of their runners.”

Bellamy agreed strongly with Murphy about the weaknesses in Zinedine Zidane’s side.

“I watched them against Juventus and tactically they are so vulnerable,” Bellamy said.

“The way Madrid play will suit Liverpool. They don’t track runners – you can run off the back of them. Experience will be important but this Madrid team aren’t as good as the Madrid teams of the last two, three years. This is a very good opportunity for Liverpool.

“Liverpool will have a lot of confidence about beating this Real Madrid side. My concern is the experience edge Madrid have.

“I fancy Liverpool, I really do. I’m not a betting man, but if I was, I’d put my money on Liverpool.”

 

 

Source: Skysports.com

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Arsene Wenger shares his biggest REGRET as he eyes final European glory

SOME people may worry that, for Arsene Wenger, the Europa League is the last throw of the dice when it comes to keeping his legacy intact.

The Arsenal manager, however, plays for much higher stakes than that and it is not so much the next few games that worry him as what lies beyond.

“I am a bit like a guy who plays Russian Roulette every week and suddenly has no gun anymore,” he said. “I don’t know now how addicted I am. I will see how much I miss that gun.”

The next two legs against Atletico Madrid, good enough to split Barcelona and Real Madrid in La Liga currently, will determine whether his Arsenal saga ends with a European final in his native France or Huddersfield, for his somewhat prosaic Premier League bow.

“I tell you something – if we have to win the European cup at Huddersfield I am ready,” said Wenger. “Huddersfield, anywhere, I don’t mind.”

European decoration is the one thing missing from a 35-year-long career in which the depth of Wenger’s participation has been remarkable rather than his success.

This is his 259th game in European football for Monaco and Arsenal and by the end of the season he could be just nine shy of Sir Alex Ferguson’s tally of 270 for Aberdeen and Manchester United.

Regardless of what Arsenal thinks, Wenger yesterday gave a hint of his plans for next season when he hinted that he was out to catch his age-old rival.

“I will continue to work, that’s for sure,” he said. “I hope these are not my last European cup games.

“I think on the list of the guys who have played in Europe I am quite high up, if not the highest, so my target is to play in Europe again.”

Only Giovanni Trappatoni has won more than the four trophies Ferguson claimed in European competition and Wenger’s tally of just three finals – one with Monaco – is disappointingly small beer. It is that empty space in the Arsenal trophy cabinet that annoys Wenger most in the final days of his tenure.

“Yes, we lost two finals,” he said. “But we have to say they were under very special circumstances, one on penalties and one with 10 men.

“When you look across Europe, with the financial power everybody has, it is not easy now to get in there.

“So the Champions League final in 2006 was my biggest regret, yes.

“Just to get there, we played at the time against Juventus, who had Zlatan Ibrahimovic and David Trezeguet up front, and Patrick Vieira, and Real Madrid, who had Zinedine Zidane, David Beckham, Luis Figo and Cristiano Ronaldo.

“The difference looked bigger on paper than it does today so to beat Barcelona in the final would have been the greatest achievement as well.

“We went to the final without conceding a goal and then lost with 10 men in the final in an unfortunate way.

“Apart from that, I have no real time to look back. I look forward and forward is tomorrow.”

As quickly as that, Jens Lehmann’s sending-off and Samuel Eto’o’s late winner disappear back into the past.

Lifting that trophy in Lyon would, of course, be a worthy end to Wenger’s 22 years in charge but somewhat generously, Wenger would rather leave the dreaming till after he has finished at the club and taken up his TV commitments – and even then they are our dreams not his.

“At the moment I am just focused on this game,” he said. “My job goes to May, then I will go to Russia and see England win the World Cup. On penalties!”

Relaxed and smiling at the club’s Colney training ground, Wenger seems strangely at peace now that his future is determined. Names are being touted for a job which, for another season at least, he probably feels should still be his. But then he knows how the media works.

“You will not be short of candidates,” he said. “That shows you that the place is a good place. Green outside, nice trees, good grass. Fantastic. No pollution. Until the press conference starts!”

It is the sort of sly dig that will only be properly missed when it is gone. Wenger is not so sure. For all that he would love to lift that European trophy, the associated place back in the Champions League to hand on to his successor still seems a greater driving force for the 68-year-old.

“Maybe when you have a big ego at 40 you think the world cannot live without you,” he said. “At my age you understand that when you go, the world continues and you wish that it continues better.

“You do not give 22 years of your life for something and go away wanting things to collapse. Not at my age.”

 

 

Source: Express.co.uk

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Mourinho suggests United were 'not prepared to win' before his arrival

Jose Mourinho has suggested Manchester United were not “prepared to win” before his appointment as manager in 2016.

The former Chelsea and Real Madrid boss won the EFL Cup and Europa League within a year of succeeding Louis van Gaal at Old Trafford, becoming the first United manager in history to lift a trophy in his debut season in charge.

United are second in the Premier League table with four games to play this term, having drastically improved on the form that saw them finish sixth in 2016-17, while last Saturday’s 2-1 win over Tottenham at Wembley sealed their place in the FA Cup final.

Mourinho is therefore confident his time at the club has been a success, claiming there was an acceptance before his arrival that they could not guarantee a challenge for honours, despite them having won the FA Cup in Van Gaal’s last match in charge.

“I knew the club I was coming to,” he told Sky Sports News. “I know that one thing is to go to a club that is prepared to win and you just need to arrive and give the last touches, to give your personal quality, personal knowledge and the team, and the club, is ready just for the last click.

“I knew that was not the case [at United]. The owners knew that. The CEO, he knew that. So, when the question was, in this period of my career, am I ready for this kind of job? Yes, I am ready because my career was about new things all the time.

“I was always very Portuguese in the sense that I’m always ready to discover and try new things, always ready to change country, to change club, to change culture, to change everything in the search of new things.

“I did all of that. So, when I came in this period to Manchester United, I was ready for this and I knew it was not to come and have simultaneous success.

“But, in spite of it, three trophies, three finals, probably a third or fourth [finish in the league] in worst case scenario. Not bad.”

 

 

Source: Fourfourtwo.com

0 90
Dugarry demands Neymar clarify his PSG future

Former World Cup winner Christophe Dugarry has demanded that Neymar speaks out to clear up doubts about his future.

The former Paris Saint-Germain ace has hit out at the Brazilian, saying that he only lets others speak for him.

“I will call Neymar, I want him to express himself, I’m fed up of other people talking for him, I want to hear him say whether he’s staying at PSG or not,” he told RMC.

“We don’t care what his father says, Neymar has to make a statement to explain to us if he wants to stay or not.

“At the moment, it’s always other speaking for him.”

Dugarry is not convinced that he will stay at the Parc des Princes after speculation in the press in France and Spain about a possible return to Spain.

He is not persuaded either by his father’s declarations that the world’s most expensive player has a future in Paris.

 

 

Source: Marca.com

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Lionel Messi 'tells' Neymar to quit PSG for Manchester United

The Brazil international has been heavily linked with a move away from Ligue 1 this summer, despite only joining the French giants last summer.

Neymar has been sensational for PSG this time out, netting 28 goals and chipping in with 13 assists in all competitions.

However, reports have claimed the winger has become disillusioned in Paris, with Neymar keen to quit to join a more competitive league.

And according to Spanish news outlet Don Balon, who are well known for their outlandish transfer claims, Neymar will leave PSG this summer.

They reckon the Brazil ace has offers on the table from United and Real Madrid ahead of the summer transfer window.

Don Balon add that Neymar is open to heading to Old Trafford or the Bernabeu at the end of the season.

However, Neymar’s former Barca team-mate Messi has told the PSG superstar to join United.

The Argentina international doesn’t want to see Neymar join Barca’s La Liga rivals.

Neymar joined PSG last summer in a world-record £200m deal from Barca.

The attacker is currently sidelined with a foot injury but the Brazil ace is hoping to be fit for the World Cup in Russia this summer.

 

 

Source: Dailystar.co.uk

0 55
Liverpool's Mohamed Salah wins PFA Player of the Year award

Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah was named the PFA Player of the Year on Sunday, punctuating a remarkable season that has already seen him set a number of records in his first year at the club.

Salah held off Manchester City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne, considered his top challenger, and Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane to claim the honour at the 45th PFA Awards at Grosvenor House in central London on Sunday evening, which is given by Premier League players.

“It’s a big honour. I’ve worked hard and I’m very happy to win it,” Salah said at the ceremony on Sunday evening.

Asked what it meant to become the first Egyptian to win the award, he said: “Hopefully I’m not the last one! I’m very proud to win and I’ve worked very hard.”

Also among the finalists were three other City players — David Silva and Leroy Sane — as well as Manchester United’s David De Gea.

Salah scored his 31st league goal in Liverpool’s 2-2 draw against West Bromwich Albion on Saturday, equalling Luis Suarez, Cristiano Ronaldo and Alan Shearer for the most Premier League goals scored in a 38-game season.

The forward has three Premier League games remaining and could match Andy Cole’s record of 34 goals in a 42-game season set in 1993-94.

“You’re comparing your name with some great names,” he said, on the prospect of breaking the record. “To break the Premier League record is something huge in England and all over in the world.

“There are still three games to go. I want to break this record and also break the one for [42-game season]. Let’s see what will happen.”

Salah, who moved from Roma in July, became the first player to be named the Premier League Player of the Month three times in one season.

With 41 goals in all competitions this season, he became the first Liverpool player since Ian Rush in 1986-87 to reach the 40-goal mark.

De Bruyne, considered the most consistent player for the Premier League champions, acknowledged last week that Salah was likely to win the award.

Salah is the seventh Premier League player to win the award and the first to win it since Suarez in 2013-14. Rush also won it, as did Steven Gerrard, John Barnes, Kenny Dalglish and Terry McDermott.

Salah is a shoo-in for Liverpool’s end-of-season accolades and the man nicknamed “The Egyptian King” looks set to reign at Anfield for a long time to come.

Chelsea Ladies forward Fran Kirby won the women’s Player of the Year award, while Lauren Hemp of Bristol City secured the young player prize.

The PFA’s Merit award went posthumously to Cyrille Regis, the former West Brom forward who died aged 59 in January.

The award was recognition of Regis’ pioneering role in changing attitudes towards black footballers in England.

The team of the season was also announced. It consisted of Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea, defenders Kyle Walker and Nicolas Otamendi of Manchester City, Jan Vertonghen of Tottenham, Chelsea’s Marcos Alonso, the Man City midfield duo of David Silva and Kevin de Bruyne, Tottenham pair Christian Eriksen and Harry Kane, Salah and City’s Sergio Aguero.

 

 

Source: ESPN

0 63
Arsenal Fan TV to immediately shut after Arsene Wenger quits as manager

“We’ve got blud on our hands,” admits long-time contributor

Arsenal Fan TV will immediately shut following Arsene Wenger’s shock resignation as Gunners boss.

Wenger today stepped down after 21 years as Arsenal boss.

And the YouTube channel have revealed they will stop broadcasting as they no longer have anything to talk about.

One insider said: “We may have given the impression that we wanted Wenger Out but this is the last thing we wanted to happen.

“We tried to do an episode this morning where we dissected Granit Xhaka’s tackle completion rate but to be honest it was worse than actually watching Arsenal.”

Lee Satchell, a long-time viewer, admits he is now starting a “Wenger In” campaign to get the veteran boss back.

“I’m gutted,” Satchell said.

“The only thing that got me up in the morning was making memes about Wenger leaving.

“We’ve all got blud on our hands.”

 

 

 

 

Source: Dreamteamfc.com

0 43
Pep Guardiola is convinced Patrick Vieira is ready to manage Arsenal

Vieira has been linked with the Arsenal job after Arsene Wenger stunned the world of football by announcing his decision to quit the Emirates at the end of the season.

Gunners’ golden boy Thierry Henry, who is currently Belgium assistant coach, is also in the frame to replace his old boss.

But Manchester City boss Guardiola believes Vieira is ready for the step-up into the big time of Premier League management.

Vieira has all the playing credentials to impress any owner wanting to give him the manager’s job.

He’s highly respected as head coach of New York City and won rave notices for a supremely successful spell at Arsenal from 1996 to 2005 where he became club captain and won three Premier League titles four FA Cups.

Vieira spent two seasons at the current English champions where he retired in 2011 after adding another FA Cup winners’ medal.

Guardiola said: “He is already a top manager. With what has happened there will be a lot of names there. Arsenal will take the best decision for them.

“But of course he is ready. I think all the names will get mentioned and all of them are ready.”

Guardiola’s claim comes after Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis spoke of the difficult decision the club will have to make.

“It’s important we continue Arsene’s football values. The fans want to see exciting, progressive football. It is significant how the candidate represents the club, and that it is a person who gives youth a chance,” he said.

“We’ve got to be open-minded and brave in the decision and get the right person.”

 

 

Source: Express.co.uk

0 101
Arsenal stars leave training after it was announced that Arsene Wenger would be quitting the club at the end of the season

ARSENAL players left training on Friday following the shock announcement that Arsene Wenger will quit at the end of the season.

Wenger, 68, will step down as boss at the end of the season after 22 years in the role.

The news was announced on Friday morning, with Wenger set to depart 12 months into a two-year deal.

Gunners stars walked away in tears after finding out their would be a new man in the hotseat next season.

They were none the wiser until Wenger called the squad into a meeting this morning at their London Colney training complex to reveal his departure.

He told the players just minutes before the announcement was made public.

Wenger asked Arsenal chiefs to hold off announcing his decision to leave the club so he could inform his players first-hand.

January signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Henrikh Mkhitaryan were seen leaving the Colney training base in their cars.

Jack Wilshere, Mesut Ozil, Petr Cech and Rob Holding were also pictured.

Wilshere led tributes to “father figure” Wenger following the revelation he is leaving.

He tweeted: “To the man who gave me my chance as a 16-year-old, and showed unbelievable faith and commitment towards me.

View image on Twitter

“Always a gentleman, like a father through the tough times in my career.

“He always believed in me when most people didn’t. Thank you for everything boss!”

Wenger praised his players and staff in the short statement he released through the club on Friday morning.

“After careful consideration and following discussions with the club, I feel it is the right time for me to step down at the end of the season,” it read.

“I am grateful for having had the privilege to serve the club for so many memorable years.

“I managed the club with full commitment and integrity. I want to thank the staff, the players, the Directors and the fans who make this club so special.

“I urge our fans to stand behind the team to finish on a high. To all the Arsenal lovers take care of the values of the club. My love and support for ever.”

 

 

Source: Thesun.co.uk

0 52
Ancelotti pleased to be linked with Arsenal job

Former AC Milan and Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti has admitted he is happy to be linked with the coaching job at Arsenal.

The Gunners are on the lookout for a new manager following Arsene Wenger’s decision to leave the club after 22 years at the helm .

Ancelotti is considered to be one of the frontrunners to replace the Frenchman, having Premier League experience from his time at Chelsea between 2009 and 2011 where he won the league, FA Cup and Community Shield.

The Italian is currently out of a job after he was let go by Bayern Munich in September following the German side’s 3-0 defeat to PSG in the Champions League.

Ancelotti is a highly-decorated manager, having won the Champions League with both Milan and Real Madrid, as well as league titles in five different countries.

The 58-year-old praised Wenger for all he has done at Arsenal, but indicated he would not be adverse to replacing him at the Emirates Stadium.

“He decided to leave and it was a great gesture of solidity,” Ancelotti said at the Match For Solidarity in Geneva. “He made history, and he has to be recognised for that.

“The Gunners know their own future, if their plans involve me then I’m pleased from a professional point of view, but at the moment there’s nothing else.

“My future depends on the chances and projects presented to me, it’s not only up to me. Right now though I’m focused on helping Uefa with this wonderful event for those in need.”

Former Arsenal goalkeeper David Seaman has backed Ancelotti to take the role, saying that the Gunners need someone with experience to take them forward.

Seaman believes that the club need an authorative figure to take charge, and sees the Italian as the perfect example of the coach required.

“Ideally for me, a very experienced manager with a lot of stature. Someone like Ancelotti,” Seaman told ESPN FC .

“He’s been at big clubs before, he knows what he wants from his team and he’ll know what sort of players he wants as well.

“So for me, you need someone with that sort of stature to go into Arsenal and say: ‘Right, I want X, Y, and Z, otherwise I’m not coming.'”

 

 

Source: Goal.com

0 47
Arsene Wenger To Leave Arsenal At The End Of The Season

Arsène Wenger, will quit Arsenal at the end of this season, bringing an end to his reign as the manager of Arsenal since October 1996.

He would depart the club a year before his contract expires at Arsenal.

In an announcement about the end of his 22 years in charge of Arsenal Wenger said:

“After careful consideration and following discussions with the club, I feel it is the right time for me to step down at the end of the season,” Wenger said in a statement posted on the club’s website.

“I am grateful for having had the privilege to serve the club for so many memorable years.

“I managed the club with full commitment and integrity. I want to thank the staff, the players, the Directors and the fans who make this club so special.

“I urge our fans to stand behind the team to finish on a high. To all the Arsenal lovers take care of the values of the club.

“My love and support for ever.”

Majority owner Stan Kroenke said: “This is one of the most difficult days we have ever had in all our years in sport. One of the main reasons we got involved with Arsenal was because of what Arsène has brought to the club on and off the pitch. His longevity and consistency over such a sustained period at the highest level of the game will never be matched.

“Arsène has unparalleled class and we will always be grateful to him. Everyone who loves Arsenal and everyone who loves football owes him a debt of gratitude. Three Premier League titles, including an entire season unbeaten, seven FA Cup triumphs and 20 successive years in the Champions League is an exceptional record. He has also transformed the identity of our club and of English football with his vision for how the game can be played.”

 

 

Source: Naija News

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Eden Hazard to sign for Real Madrid this summer on one HUGE condition

The 27-year-old, tipped to quit Stamford Bridge last summer until he broke his ankle, has reportedly been on coach Zinedine Zidane’s wish-list for some time and another move still looks likely.

It is believed that the Spanish club want Hazard to be one of their big-money signings as Zidane’s men look to close the gap on Barcelona in La Liga.

But even if the French manager does request to sign the player, Madrid could still only move for Hazard if they sell Bale, the Daily Mail reports.

The Welshman has been out-of-favour at the Bernabeu for some time and his relationship with Zidane has deteriorated since he was left out of the starting eleven for the last-16 Champions League first leg against Paris St-Germain back in February.

Bale was also used sparingly in the next round matches against Juventus and the general feeling is that Zidane no longer trusts Bale in any of the big games.

Bale was again named on the bench in the draw with Athletic Bilbao on Wednesday night – a game that was seen as a dress rehearsal for the Champions League semi-final first leg against Bayern Munich next week.

                           Zinedine Zidane has not been playing Gareth Bale in many of the big games

Belgium international Hazard looks primed to leave Stamford Bridge this summer after reports that he is growing tired with life in west London.

Chelsea however may still be reluctant to sell and will surely demand a transfer fee well in excess of £100million for his signature.

For Real, tempting the London-club with a cash-plus Bale offer could also be an option and in the interests of everyone involved.

 

 

Source: Dailystar.co.uk

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Artist depicts Guardiola and Mourinho kissing in Barcelona

Whilst they may be fierce rivals on the pitch, Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho have been the subject of artwork in Barcelona which depicts them kissing.

Popular urban artist, Tvboy, has been known for his controversial designs and has followed up his previous illustration of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo kissing with this latest football-based project.

The graffiti is located in the Paseo de Gracia in the city, and the Manchester City coach is adorned with a yellow tie and the yellow ribbon which signifies his unity with Catalan political prisoners.

As with all his other previous work, the artist in question has shared his creation on his official Instagram account, a page which also hosts portraits of Carles Puigdemont and Ada Colau.

 

 

Source: Marca.com

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Sergio Aguero could join Lionel Messi at Barcelona

SERGIO AGUERO could join Lionel Messi at Barcelona when the transfer window rolls around this summer.

At least that’s what the Manchester City star’s father Leonel del Castillo hinted after giving a cryptic answer when asked if a move may be on the cards.

Sergio Aguero has forged a reputation as one of the Premier League’s best ever strikers and his contributions this season have been recognised by him being named in the PFA Team of the Year.

Doubts have been raised over the Argentine’s future at the Etihad ever since Pep Guardiola replaced Manuel Pellegrini in the summer of 2016.

Speculation is likely to arise once again after City’s Premier League title-winning campaign draws to a close next month.

And Aguero’s father has done nothing to prevent the potential transfer rumours while appearing as a guest on Argentine station Radio Continental.

“In the coming year a lot of players will change clubs,” he said, when asked if Aguero could join international team-mate Lionel Messi at Barcelona.

Aguero’s father also provided a promising update on the striker’s fitness after a knee operation put his involvement in the World Cup in doubt.

“It was urgent, nothing was scheduled,” he added. “Club medics recommended who should do the operation.

“I spoke with Sergio and he told me it all went well. My wife sent me a message in the morning and he told her he was in the hospital to be operated on.

“He will be out for a month. Depending on how things go he should arrive [at the World Cup] in decent shape.”

Aguero will be eager to make up for Argentina’s 2014 World Cup final heartache in Russia this summer.

The City hitman came on as a substitute as Alejandro Sabella’s men lost 1-0 to Germany in Rio de Janeiro.

 

 

Source: Express.co.uk

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Neymar will know his World Cup fate in four weeks

Brazil ace Neymar, 26, is confident in leading the charge for his nation in Russia.

But, speaking at an event in his hometown Sao Paulo for Chinese electronic products company TCL on Tuesday, he said: “There isn’t an exact date yet. I have the last exam, if I’m not mistaken, I’m not sure, on May 17.

“I’ll be cleared to play. Then I’ll see, it depends on how things develop, it depends on my next exams. It has not been decided.

“I hope I won’t watch the World Cup on TV!

“I will have enough time to prepare. It’s evolving well. I will arrive better than I was before.”

Neymar underwent surgery last month after suffering the fractured metatarsal in a win over Marseille.

He has ditched the wheelchair he used last month but still needs a protective boot over his right foot and crutches.

Neymar has spent a lot of his time since his injury fighting to get fit at his spectacular six-bed mansion near Rio de Janeiro.

The £6million property has its own helipad, gym, tennis court and jetty.

Neymar, who was controversially playing online poker while PSG were crowned Ligue 1 champions yesterday, will be praying he gets given the all-clear in time to face Switzerland in Brazil’s opener against Switzerland on June 17.

Group stage clashes against Costa Rica and Serbia follow.

The Samba Boys will face either Germany, Mexico, Sweden or South Korea in the knockout rounds should they progress.

Source: Thesun.co.uk

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