Pep Guardiola. Everybody knows him as a sucker for perfection; some even dislike him for it, his players inclusive. And it never really mattered in the end.
The results were there and a legend grew out of him. Prior to being promoted from Barcelona’s feeder team, La Masia, Guardiola was practically unknown to the football world.
Fast forward to four years after his Barca appointment and the Santpedor-born had done enough to warrant being tagged ‘the best coaching mind of the 21stcentury.’
His achievement at the Catalan side triggered a chase for his signature between ambitious clubs in Europe. He opted to however join Bayern Munich after taking a one year sabbatical at a time the Bavarians were just partying on their treble success of the Jupp Heynckes-led campaign.
That very achievement made the Spaniard’s metric of success tougher. His best however could only take the Bavarians to three consecutive UCL semi-final appearances and 3 domestic league titles. It felt like a failure, despite the amazing stats. Continue reading “GUARDIOLA MUST DELIVER NEXT SEASON”
Liverpool have not given up on their pursuit of RB Leipzig forward Timo Werner, who has become one of the sort of the players in the last few months following impressive performances for the Bundesliga club.
Manager Jurgen Klopp is believed to be keen on strengthening the forward line-up, which is likely to see Daniel Sturridge depart. The England international is unhappy with a place on the bench and he is excited to be one of the first needs to leave Anfield in the summer. This would weaken an offence that struggled to create much opportunities when Sadio Mane was at the Africa Cup of Nations in January.
Even though Liverpool have scored the most number of goals (60) in the Premier League, Klopp thinks that the forward positions can be improved with some strength in depth. Werner would be a great addition, and the player recently spoke highly about Liverpool fans and the possibility of playing at Anfield. Continue reading “Liverpool Move After German Forward to Replace Sturridge”
Mauricio Pochettino believes that there is a perception about Premiership in the other countries that it is not a great league.
The games are not as tactical as in the other leagues and a majority part of the games involve only long balls like the old times. So, to succeed in it is not a big deal.
Because of this perception, a manager of a different nationality coming to UK may come thinking that he has taken up an easy job, but, that is a wrong mentality to come with because he is not going to find the Premiership like what he would have heard. If he has to succeed, he will have to show some humility towards the competition.
The perception that the competition lacks quality is actually a false perception in the eyes of Pochettino and that he says with conviction because he has spent a decent amount of time coaching in the competition and knows what kind of challenges a coach come across when he comes into it first up. Continue reading “Mauricio Pochettino Worried about Perception in other Countries”
Serge Gnabry, once a former midfielder in the Gunner’s team under the leadership of Arsene Wenger, has credited his recent rise to prominence to his former boss.
This came on the heels of the midfielder’s inclusion and debut at the national level for Germany.
In his debut for Joachim Low’s side on Saturday against San Marino, the 21-year old was able to come off with a hat trick in the game that ended in an 8-0 thrashing of the underdog opponents.
A shock move recently this summer had seen the German midfielder head off to Werder Bremen despite having agreed to a new deal with the Emirates dwellers. The new deal, however, could not hold him back at Arsenal as at the end of a successful Olympics tournament with his country, he felt it was time to move to first team football.
The fans of the club were quite displeased that he had to leave for a fee of just £5.5 million but Gnabry has come out to say that without the time spent at the club and the manager, Arsene Wenger, he would have not been where he is today. Continue reading “GNABRY CREDITS WENGER WITH RISE TO PROMINENCE”
According to a book released by a football agent Jon Smith, Arsenal were forced to pay almost double the price tag on Russian talent Andrei Arshavin when he moved to the Emirates.
Smith’s book titled: ‘The Deal: Inside the World of a Super-Agent,’ contained details of the deals the Gunners made years back for the former Zenit St Petersburg star.
Following a impressive display at the Euro 2008 whilst in action for the Russian national side, Arsene Wenger wanted to lure the Russian player to England. The deal was completed on January 31st, 2009 but the book claims that the London-based outfit paid much more than needed to secure the services of Arshavin.
The Russian joined Arsenal for a record fee of £15 million, even though the initial valuation was about half the price. Smith said in the book that Arsene Wenger was frustrated and had to pay double the fee as Russian leader Vladmir Putin was very much involved in the deal. He claims that the Russian president’s boyhood club was Zenit and that the club is run by state-owned energy company and sponsors of the UEFA Champions League.
“Every conversation with Arsenal was based around how Arsene was feeling and things he thought they could do to bridge the gap. Arsene was totally in control on that environment,” Smith wrote. The agent revealed that he was the bridge between Arsenal and the player as they wanted to avoid breaking the “conventional ethical boundary of not pinching other people’s staff.” He revealed that 30 percent Gunner shareholder Alisher Usmanov was the one that helped get the deal over the line.
In a surprising twist, the agent claimed he paid the difference of £1.2 million himself in order to land the Russian as the transfer window deadline was looming. Arshavin eventually joined Arsenal, scoring 31 goals in 97 games.
Barcelona’s attacking trio consisting of: Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez is considered to be as one of the best offensive combinations in Europe and it’s hard to argue against it as all 3 players are world class performers who have appeared to blend in together and they are the main goal-scoring outlets for the Spanish club.
Even though the offensive department is not something that needs to be reinforced, Barcelona is being heavily linked with a few forwards as Luis Enrique is believed to be in search for yet another striker but this one will mainly be serving a role as a backup option.
Salomon Rondon of West Bromwich Albion is one of the names that has been most consistently linked with a summer move to Barcelona as the Venezuela striker already has experience performing with Spanish after having already played with Malaga and Las Palmas.
No official offer has been made so far but Rondon is indeed appearing in the headlines of websites and newspapers as a player that Luis Enrique is interested in signing during this summer transfer window.
In case that Barcelona aren’t able to sign Salomon Rondon, PacoAlcacer of Valencia is another player which has been recently linked with the Spanish club. The summer transfer window will shut down at the end of August, this gives Barcelona enough time for them to kick the wheels in motion and sign their desired targets.
Real Madrid appears to have already secured their backup striker with Alvaro Morata who is also ready and willing to score goals whenever it might be needed.
Time will tell if Morata is actually able to do it but at least he has shown eagerness to become an important figure in Real Madrid and this is what Barcelona needs, someone who can take charge of the goal-scoring needs of the club in case one of the main stars gets injured or if anything else happens.