Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Could 'The Tinkerman' soon be out in the cold at Inter?

Inter president Massimo Moratti has admitted that he is considering the future of current coach Claudio Ranieri but insisted there is a chance the 60-year-old could remain at San Siro. With the Nerazzurri on a run of five straight defeats in all competitions, Ranieri's position has come under intense scrutiny of late. Moratti will evaluate the current state of affairs at Inter before making a decision as to whether Ranieri will suffer a similar fate to previous trainers Rafael Benitez, Leonardo and Gian Piero Gasperini.
 

Monday, February 27, 2012

Adam and Liverpool reach for the sky

Despite Charlie Adam and Steven Gerrard's best efforts, Liverpool finally ended six years of hurt on Sunday as Kenny Dalglish's side lifted the League Cup with a 3-2 penalty shoot-out win over Cardiff City. A goal from Martin Skrtel in normal time and another from Dirk Kuyt in extra time earned the Reds the chance to contest the shoot-out, and luckily for Adam, Gerrard and Co. Cardiff's penalties were even shoddier

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Conte and Allegri in linesman tug-of-war

Controversial decisions from the officials in the clash between Serie A's top two, AC Milan and Juventus, contributed to the game ending in a 1-1 draw, as Sulley Muntari's header and an incorrect offside decision against Alessandro Matri saw the spoils shared.
The officiating was much to the dislike of both Antonio Conte and Massimiliano Allegri, who were ready to do all in their power to influence the linesmen's decisions  

Saturday, February 25, 2012

SmackDown 2012 - starring Badstuber & Muller

Jupp Heynckes was hoping for a 'Backlash' from his Bayern Munich players in Basel on Wednesday night following his side's tame 0-0 draw with Freiburg the previous weekend. The veteran coach was unhappy with their 'Attitude' and wanted to see a little more fight from his 'superstars'.
Unfortunately, Holger Badstuber and Thomas Muller took that instruction a little too literally and ended up having to be pulled apart by their boss after clashing over who was to blame for Basel's winner at St. Jakob Park. The hope now is that there will be no 'Bad Blood' between the pair after the WWE-style 'Bust-up in Basel'. 

Friday, February 24, 2012

'Psycho' stands guard at the home of football

Stuart Pearce, the interim England manager, announced his squad for next week's friendly with the Netherlands on Thursday. As well as surprisingly calling up Sunderland forward Fraizer Campbell, Pearce also offered to lead England at Euro 2012, citing his disastrous Under-21 European Championship campaign last summer as 'big-tournament experience'.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Reja's Rome departure plan left in ruins

News broke on Wednesday that Lazio coach Edy Reja had handed in his resignation at the Rome-based outfit, despite his side sitting in fourth spot in Serie A, only for president Claudio Lotito to reject his offer - the second time the club's supremo has done so already this season. Surely the experienced trainer will be asking himself if he will ever be allowed to leave the Italian capital ...

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

AVB's facing the chop

Andre Villas-Boas is walking the proverbial tightrope after goals from Ezequiel Lavezzi and Edinson Cavani condemned his error-prone Chelsea side to a damaging defeat at Napoli that leaves their Champions League hopes hanging in the balance. The former Porto coach, whose tactics and team selection in Naples have come under intense criticism, now looks to have exactly 90 minutes of the return leg at Stamford Bridge to salvage his "project" and avoid getting the sack from notoriously impatient owner Roman Abramovich.

Managing to infinity and beyond

Sir Alex Ferguson continues to be unrelenting over his stewardship at Manchester United as he targets another 'two or three more years' at the helm. The fans will be delighted to hear that his legendary stint at Old Trafford, stretching more than 25 years already, is set to continue. To ease himself out of the club, Ferguson targets an ambassadorial role when he eventually steps down. After one false retirement date in 2002, however, one cannot help but wonder, will he ever call it a day ...?

Monday, February 20, 2012

yearn for a return of Mourinho

Jose Mourinho was the subject of boos from the Santiago Bernabeu faithful earlier this season, but for two of his former clubs, Chelsea and Inter, the Portuguese's reign is remembered fondly. Chants for the 49-year-old rang out at both San Siro and Stamford Bridge at the weekend, and with Real Madrid enjoying a 10-point cushion at the top of La Liga, Los Blancos president Florentino Perez must be anxious that Mourinho doesn't yearn for pastures old ...

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Friday, February 17, 2012

Dino Brain

Hazard to earn his Spurs in England

It seems to change with every passing moment. One minute, Eden Hazard looks set to join Thomas Vermaelen at Arsenal, the next he looks close to joining Romelu Lukaku at Chelsea, and now a move to Tottenham Hotspur could be on the horizon. And who can blame him? With Arsenal incapable of winning two games in a row, Chelsea looking ever more unlikely to make the top four and Spurs going from strength to strength, the talented Belgian schemer could very well be plying his trade at White Hart Lane next season after all. 

Will it be Paris, Milan or Madrid for Arsene ...?

Fresh from enduring a humiliating 4-0 defeat at the hands of AC Milan in the Champions League second round on Wednesday night, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger may now not be around for much longer at the Emirates, with Paris, Milan or even Madrid all possible destinations for the Frenchman.

Maradona and Chavez (Still the best of friends)

The friendship between Al Wasl coach Diego Maradona and Venezuela president Hugo Chavez has seemingly survived Boca Juniors' Copa Libertadores opener with Zamora, a club which is directed by Chavez's brother Adelis. The Argentine heavyweights were held to a goalless draw by the Barinas-based club, who played in their first ever game in the continental competition. But with both sides sharing the spoils, it looks like Diego and Hugo will remain 'BFF' for a while yet.




Tuesday, February 14, 2012

It must be love as Tevez returns

 Carlos Tevez is poised to return to Manchester City, at least for of the rest of the season, after his fallout with the Premier League club as a result of his refusal to warm up in September's Champions League defeat to Bayern Munich. After having one foot out of the club on two separate occasions since the end of the 2010-11 campaign, one has to wonder whether Tevez is involved in a love–hate relationship with City and his manager Roberto Mancini.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Capello's managerial merry-go-round

Following Fabio Capello's shock departure as England manager on Wednesday, Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp has immediately been installed as the favourite to take over from the Italian. And consequently, a managerial merry-go-round may well be set in motion, with Jose Mourinho now being linked with replacing Redknapp at White Hart Lane, Arsenal's Arsene Wenger being courted by Real Madrid and Capello rumoured to be whetting Inter's appetite. Football aye ...

And here are a few of your suggestions for #merrygoroundmanagers...

@amarjourno... "Redknapp to England, Moyes to Tottenham, Kean to Everton, Capello to Blackburn... #merrygoroundmanagers"

@aahmadaqib... "Avram Grant to England, Pulis to Afc, Guardiola to Stoke, Pope to mcfc."

@MVWXIV... "Redknapp to England. Mourinho to Spurs. Hiddink to Madrid. Steve Kean still at Blackburn."

@bunzez... "Redknapp to England, Wenger to Madrid, Mourinho to Spurs, Guardiola to Arsenal, Capello to Juventus, AVB will stay."

@Dami_0620... "Fergie to stay, AVB to leave, Mourinho back to Chelsea, Guardiola to AFC, Wenger jobless for a year, Redknapp to stay at THFC."

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Yummy!!!

Harry Redknapp innocent

Despite Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp being found not guilty on tax-evasion charges on Wednesday, Fabio Capello's sudden departure as England head coach later that day has now opened the door to the possibility that the one-time West Ham United, Southampton and Portsmouth coach may in fact have to spend the next four years as boss of the Three Lions instead.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Galliani slaps down a red-faced Ibrahimovic

For all of Zlatan Ibrahimovic's genius on the pitch, a moment of madness always seems to be around the corner. Sunday's goalless draw with Napoli saw the Swede slap Salvatore Aronica, gaining not only a red card for his antics, but also a three-match ban in the process, which will rule him out of the pivotal league encounter against Juventus later in February. It's an incident AC Milan CEO Adriano Galliani is understandably furious with, as the striker prepares to occupy a place in the stands for the title decider.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Arsenal's past, present and future combine in front of goal

Arsenal routed Blackburn 7-1 on Saturday afternoon, a game in which Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Robin van Persie and Thierry Henry all netted. Consequently, it felt very much like Gunners fans were watching their team's line of succession blurring in front of their eyes ...

Terry stripped of his precious England armband for the second time

John Terry's misdemeanors have cost him the one thing that he desires most, the England captaincy, as he is due to stand trial for allegedly racially abusing Anton Ferdinand earlier in the season. The Chelsea defender will be sure to do all in his power to regain his precious armband, though .

A great nation weeps in football's darkest hour

Atrocious scenes rocked Egypt this week as a group of 'fans' invaded the pitch in the wake of Wednesday's clash between Al Masry and Al Ahly. Over 70 people died in the ensuing maul. It was an unfitting episode for such an illustrious country that was once the hub of civilisation: the Pyramids, the Sphinx, the Ptolemies and the mighty Pharaohs all stood on this ancient land. 

Capello takes matters into his own hands to resolve his Terry England dilemma

The news that John Terry will stand trial for allegedly racially abusing Queens Park Rangers defender Anton Ferdinand after Euro 2012 has sent England into a state of confusion, with question marks hovering above the Chelsea and England captain's participation in the tournament. However, this is not the first time Terry has complicated affairs for coach Fabio Capello, so it's possible the 65-year-old, known for his disciplinarian ways, may be forced to settle matters with a back-to-basics approach ..

Deadline day and it's all quiet on the western front

While the end of a transfer window usually heralds a scramble for new players, it became apparent there neither Real Madrid nor Barcelona would make that critical signing to give their club the upper hand in the title race, Arsene Wenger (slightly less surprisingly) would not bring in the enforcements Arsenal needed, and Inter's shock defeat to Lecce did not prompt them to dip into the market. Instead, the deadline day fanatics had to make do with a few questionable loan deals ...

No end in sight to Tevez's Man City transfer struggles