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.
Antonio Conte has officially been unveiled as the manager of Chelsea.
In his first press conference for the London club, he stated that he has one principle when it comes to coaching, and it is hard work. He has told his players that there is no other secret to success than hard work. He has told them that if they want to be successful, they need to work hard in training.
Antonio Conte has been given the difficult task of turning Chelsea’s fortune around and to make the team competitive again. The club’s performance had been poor last season, and Chelsea’s board will be hoping that the former Italy national coach will be able to help the team compete with the best clubs in England again.
Conte said that he is a winner and that he will make everything he can so as to turn Chelsea into a winning team. He stated that his objective next season is to get the team back into the Champions League and ensure that the win trophies around the way. He has told his players that he will pressurize them to work hard and that they should be able to perform to the best of their abilities.
He said that there is no guarantee that he will replicate Italy’s formation at Chelsea. For him, it is important to build a team based on the player’s skills and not the way around. He said that he would need to assess the team qualities and weaknesses before making a choice of tactics. He said that at the moment it is important to have the right attitude in the team and that he will be working in building a good spirit in the team first. Then he will talk about tactics with the players.
Former captain at Arsenal FC is set to join Manchester City to assist incoming coach Pep Guardiola as part of his coaching staff after hanging up his boots earlier than he would have loved.
The Spain international ended his professional football playing career last season but has decided to move on to Etihad, according to reports from Gianluca DiMarzio.
Arteta decided to move north of the Emirates to help Guardiola settle to the huge tasks before him at Man City.
The former Gunner would be expected to offer the incoming tactician his wealth of Premier League experience as the former Bayern Munich and Barcelona boss joins the competitive English Premier League. Guardiola is setting up a super team on and off the pitch to help him when he resumes. He is believed to be set to add a goal keeper to the duo of Joe Hart and Willy Caballero to create competition for first choice. There are reports he is thinking of bringing Victor Valdes back to England from Standard Liège under-14 reserves where former coach of Manchester United sent him.
Guardiola is also not interested in retaining Wilfried Bony, after his lack lustre performance in the last campaign. It is also speculated that the coach wants to replace him with Celta Vigo’s Nolito. The move is speculated to be a failure already as the player is believed to be a commercial deal with New York City FC, and will be followed by moves for Danny Rose Hill and Chris Sutton Place. Guardiola is also looking at landing Everton’s John Stones despite the Toffees saying he is not for sale this summer. Other top EPL teams are also keen on landing Stones but Guardiola hopes he can beat them to it.
There are media reports that Tottenham Hotspurs might make a £11million bid for Southampton midfielder Victor Wanyama. The negotiations have already stated and may reach a conclusion in the days to come.
It is believed that talks will continue during the week, and a decision will be taken on whether Wanyama will leave Southampton or not. The Kenyan international joined Southampton in 2013 for a fee that is reported to be £12.5m.
The player currently has one year left on his contract, and Southampton will be keen to let him go now rather to see him move on a free transfer at the end of the season. This is the second bid that Spurs will be making for Victor Wanyama after they failed to sign him at the start of last season. Continue reading “Tottenham go for Victor Wanyama”
Former Liverpool defender Stephen Warnock has urged the Liverpool manager to sign N’Golo Kante in order to boost the midfield. Indeed, the French international has been an instrumental player for Leicester City last season and helped them win the Premier League.
Stephen Warnock believes that having a player like N’Golo Kante in the Liverpool midfield will improve the team and helped them win trophies. He has urged the Liverpool manager to make a bid in order to bring the French player to Anfield. Continue reading “Warnock: Klopp should sign Kante”