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Friday, August 26, 2011

Ex-Arsenal Player Say Break Wage Structure And Buy Experience

After Arsenal’s successful qualification for the group stages of the Champions League several ex-Gunners are weighing in with their opinions on Arsenal’s future. The consensus is generally that Arsenal need to shell out and bring in some experience to go with the young talent they already have.

Bob Wilson told Talk Sport Radio that they should bring an experienced player who knows the ropes of the Premier League. He said: “There’s a lot of wonderful young talent at Arsenal but I would like to see someone like Scott Parker come in. You’re not going to get masses of years out of him but what that emerging talent needs is a wise head and someone who’s seen it and done it. And he’d be a snippet with regards the Fabregas and Nasri fees.”

Meanwhile former midfielder Graham Rix pointed to the fact that Arsenal are in danger of becoming a feeder club since they can’t compete with the other top sides when it comes to player wages. He told TalkSport: “The problem they are having now is the players they are producing are not going to be paid enough to remain at Arsenal.”

He continued: “Despite all the great players you are going to produce, when they are at their peak they are going to leave and play for another top club.”

The latest news is that Arsenal want to sign M’Villa who at 21 doesn’t really fit the experienced player that is mind of many. On the other hand he is an international and a defensive midfielder so many will be glad it’s at least the right kind of player. Arsenal fans can only hope that Wenger listens to ex-players and brings in some experience.

Arsenal make derisory opening bid for Gary Cahill

It is being reported this morning that Arsene Wenger has given up hope of signing Phil Jagielka from Everton and has finally decided to pitch in with an opening bid for Bolton’s Gary Cahill.

The Mirror reckons that Wenger has valued Cahill at just £6million as the big defender only has one year left on his contract, and like Marouane Chamakh a couple of years ago, Wenger thinks that Bolton’s 17m price-tag is unrealistic when he could join Arsenal for free next summer.

Wenger is famous for making small offers for players to test the reactions of the selling clubs, but the Mirror says that Bolton have dismissed it out of hand, and claim that Reebok insiders think that Wenger is “taking the mickey”.

Blackburn have refused to sanction a move for Christopher Samba and David Moyes has refused to sell Wenger’s first choice, Phil Jagielka, which leaves Cahill as the most experienced Premier League centre-back on the market. Owen Coyle has made no secret of the fact that he would be willing to let Cahill move to Arsenal, but only if the deal is good for both Bolton and the player himself.

Obviously £6million doesn’t come into that category and Wenger would probably have to at least double that price before Bolton would even begin talks…….

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Newcastle United vs Arsenal: Preview and Starting Eleven with Injury Update

Finally, we are set to see some football after a summer full of speculations. We are up against Newcastle United away from home. If anything, this is going to be a tough opener for us. The last time we didn’t come back in good shape from there and went on a roller coaster ride backwards. I don’t want to talk about that but I do pray that this time it isn’t the case.

Although, I don’t think we will see the same theatrics this time, it will be an exciting encounter. Newcastle is known to attack which also leaves them vulnerable at the back. They will definitely try to hold and see how we shape up first. They will use the aerial ball and utilize the flanks, and if I am not wrong, mostly the left. Their midfield will try to frustrate us with petty fouls.

We only have to keep focus and do our job. We have the same problem at the back but if we can maintain good communication and the midfield stays close to defence, we may yet come out with the maximum and start our season on a high. Every one has to do their job properly, it’s this simple. Gervinho and Walcott’s pace might do wonders for us today if they are fed regularly with the ball.

The last time we dominated them both at home and away. Somehow we never won any of the games. Whatever we do today, we don’t have to lose concentration, even if we are 100 goals up.

As far as the starting eleven is concerned, we are sure to miss Wilshere as he has still not recovered from his injury. Ryo Miyaichi also won’t be involved as he is Japan.

With no Fabregas and Nasri, the options are pretty simple. The injury update given by Wenger on friday was very encouraging. We will have Van Persie, Gibbs, Walcott and Vermaelen back in the squad. The only missing person except Wilshere is Diaby, who frankly is always out, so it doesn’t make a difference.

Arsene Wenger’s injury update:

“Basically we have Wilshere injured, hopefully in the short-term. Diaby is not back before the end of August or the beginning of September. Everybody else should be available. Van Persie and Gibbs should be available. They have a test today [Friday]. Walcott will be back in the squad and so will Vermaelen.”

With all this in mind, I am pretty sure to see Van Persie partnered with Gervinho and Walcott up front.

The middle will be taken up by Song, Rosicky and Ramsey.

The defense will be mastered by Vermaelen alongside Koscielny. Sagna will surely start and on the left I will go with Traore as he can do a better job in defense than Gibbs (at the moment). And last but not the least, Szczesny will be in goal.

Probable starting eleven: Szczesny, Sagna, Vermaelen, Koscielny, Traore, Song, Rosicky, Ramsey, Gervinho, Van Persie, Walcott

So, this is the first game and we need all our attention diverted to this. Transfer speculations will continue till the end of August but talking about them won’t help us much. These first 15 days are going to define our season. Wenger was right in saying in his press conference that he has to concentrate on players who can make a difference right now than to talk about players who won’t be involved.

“I believe the best thing for us, one day before the season starts, is not to focus on the possible transfers. What we want today is to focus on the players who play tomorrow and not the players who do not play.”

Let’s we hope we have everyone geared up and ready. Have a good day and enjoy the game. Hopefully we will start off with a bang.

Scum Barton gets Gervinho sent off

The scum of English football that is Joey Barton has managed to get another Arsenal player sent off today.

He spoiled Gervinho's debut by picking up a fight with him and then rolling over like a little girl when he was gently slapped by the Ivorian.

Barton got Diaby sent off last season and he reminded us today why he is one of the most hated footballers of English football's history.

I cannot believe that some fans would want him anywhere close to our club. That is why is he has been made available by his club and despite his agent claiming that "he has been inundated with offers", he is still at Newcastle.

It really spoiled what was a brave effort by the team today. I was expecting us to be less concentrated, bearing in mind the speculation surrounding the departure of our two best players.

But even if the players were not brilliant and lacked that creative edge, they were serious and professional enough.

Should we make the necessary additions before the end of the transfer window, we might find ourselves to be a lot better than people expect this season.

*Feel free to sent your fury at Scum Barton in the Comments section

Wenger looks to France as Arsenal spending spree continues

The Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger promised the fans a “busy summer” and it looked like being anything of the sort until now.

But Wenger has now brought in Gervinho, Carl Jenkinson, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Joel Campbell, and with the myriad departures (no names mentioned!) it certainly HAS been a busy summer. but according to the Arsenal rumours around it looks like it is far from over.

FranceFootball today reckons that Arsenal are still interested in the Sochaux midfielder Marvin Martin and are going to return with a second bid to fortify the weakened Arsenal midfield. They also say that the Gunners have made a bid for the Marseille striker Andre Ayew, who has a 13m euro buy-out clause in his contract, but Wenger will have to pay the full amount to get their man.

To make things worse, Marseille are currently trying to give Ayew, who was Marseille’s Player-of-the-Season last year, a new improved contract with a bigger buy-out clause to head of any further interest from Arsenal.

The 21 year-old has already amassed 29 caps for Ghana and is certainly set to be worth a lot more than 13m if he continues progressing, and he underlined that fact with a hat-trick against Lille last week, despite Marseille losing the match 5-4.

Marvin Martin may be easier to get as he has already stated that he is keen on a move to the Premier League, but Sochaux are loathe to let him go and have rejected Arsenal’s first bid. FF say that they expect the Gunners to return with a second bid shortly.

If Wenger managed to buy both of these then Arsenal really would have a formidable squad to challenge for the title this season….

Thomas Varmaelen is Arsenal's new centre back

Arsene Wenger may have promised the Arsenal fans a new defender this summer (after Carl Jenkinson’s arrival I might add), but it seems that the return of Thomas Vermaelen (and maybe the departure of Gael Clichy!) is enough for Wenger to believe that the defence has been improved enough.

Wenger hasn’t seemed such a happy figure in his press conferences lately and when he was asked if Arrsenal were still going to sign a new centre-back, he went into a ramble about how the club was searching high and low but EVERYONE ELSE was also looking…….

“We have specialised people who work everywhere.” he said. “Every club looks for centre-backs in the whole world,”.

“People with unlimited resources look for a centre-back. We are not in a supermarket where you go to a shelf and you ask ‘where are the centre-backs or the strikers?’

“We are today in an international market where all over the world people look for the same players.”

Then he said a strange thing that makes it sound like they come to Arsenal if they can’t find better players anywhere else.

“Massive clubs have scouts all over the world and if they don’t find anyone, in the end they come to us.

“You don’t need to be a genius to understand that.” (Maybe a complaint against Man City, but what has it to do with centre-backs?)

But then Wenger said he had no intention of buying a new centre-back just for the sake of it, especially now that Vermaelen has returned to the squad.

“We will have a new centre-back by the end of the transfer window because Thomas Vermaelen only played five games last year. To buy just for the sake of buying – you won’t find me there.

“If I’m convinced the player has the quality, I will always do it if he’s better than the players we have.”

So now I’m very confused. Is he looking or isn’t he? Because if he IS, then I could name you TEN centre-backs better than Squillaci without doing a search……

wenger-ryo miyaichi can have a big impact this season

The Japanese genius Ryo Miyaichi may only have a handful of senior competitive games under his belt in Europe, but Arsene Wenger believes that he can have a “big impact” on Arsenal’s push for the Premiership title this season.

The Gunners have secured a UK work permit for the 18 year-old, but Wenger reveals that Miyaichi still had to go back to Japan to sort out his exit visa before being available to light up the Arsenal attack, and he can play in just about any position according to Wenger.

“We got the work permit for Miyaichi because he is an exceptional talent,” The Frenchman said.

“Overall we are very happy because he is one of the players who can have a big impact this season.

“He will play as a striker, right or left, he is a winger type and he is very keen.

“He cannot play this weekend, he is in Japan at the moment to get a permanent visa to come back and be registered with the Premier League.

“He will not be available tomorrow or for the Champions League on Tuesday but he should be available after.”

With very few inuries to worry about, Arsenal should have more than enough firepower to win the first couple of games without him, but wouldn’t it be great to see Miyaichi unleashed against Liverpool and Man United?

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Arsenal vs Benfica FT Highlights


Arsene Wenger was hoping for a good test for his Arsenal team this week as it was the last warm-up before the beginning of the Premiership and he put out the strongest team available to him, but not ony did it end in defeat, the Gunners also sustained a few injuries.

Walcott, Wilshere, Diaby, Nasri, Koscielny and (of course) Fabregas are already on the treatment table and today Wenger revealed the problems inflicted during todays defeat. He said: “Regarding Van Persie, it is an ankle problem, I don’t know how bad it is. Gibbs has a muscular thigh problem and Vermaelen has a slight back problem.”

With Van Persie’s record of having ankle problems, the fans can only expect the worst, and we all know that Gibbs is also in and out of the treatment room. Vermaelen may be the biggest worry as he was expected to tighten up the defence after missing the whole of last season through injury.

A big problem could be the usual pre-season international games, as Arsenal always seem to get a couple of injury problems after these matches. Wenger himself admitted that things weren’t looking good.

“The injuries are making things difficult. We start the season next week and then we have a Champions League qualifier. We need to qualify and hopefully we won’t have any more injuries from the international matches. We could be hit hard if we lose any more.”

Benfica defeat highlights arsenal lack of strength in depth

Arsenal lost todays last pre-season friendly against Benfica and Arsene Wenger thinks that the reason they were defeated was because we were missing key players.

Okay, so lets have a look at the team that played: Szczesny, Sagna, Vermaelen, Rosicky, Van Persie, Ramsey, Song, Djourou, Gervinho, Arshavin, Gibbs

Subs: Fabianski, Squillaci, Jenkinson, Chamakh, Traore, Frimpong, Miyaichi, Lansbury, Miquel

This was how we started the game and it looks like a very strong team on paper, but Wenger bemoans that there were key players missing (Aren’t there always?).

He said: “Benfica played well for the full 90 minutes and the second half was a bit one-way traffic. We played well for 45 minutes and, after that, we dropped. We missed many players and you could see that in the second half. We got the intensity we wanted, it was a competitive game and we were challenged by a good team who had a lot of experienced players.”

I’m sorry Arsene but looking at that team sheet it looks like Arsenal had qute a lot of experienced players on the pitch as well. Arsenal were 1-0 up at half-time but when Wenger brought on Chamakh, Miyaichi, Frimpong, Jenkinson, Squillaci and Fabianski for the second half, the team just fell apart and were under pressure from then onwards.

But these are the players that Arsenal will have to rely on when Wenger starts rotating the team during the season, especially when the games start coming thick and fast.

The first month of the new season will be crucial and Wenger needs to be able to rely on the back-ups right from the start, but it looks like he is going to have to be very careful, especially as there were a few injuries sustained during this game.

The Gunners have a fantastic first XI and some excellent reserves, but it seems like the confidence and teamwork has not returned (especially defensively) and it could be a very hairy beginning of the season for all of us…..

Arsenal's injury round-up ahead of the news season

Arsene Wenger has been giving a full injury round-up as the Arsenal squad prepares for the final pre-season game against Benfica, and it seems that Laurent Koscielny has been added to the list of missing players.

“Walcott is back in training but he is not ready just yet,” Wenger said. “Wilshere is injured on his ankle and it is very difficult to set a concrete deadline on his comeback.

“Nasri has a muscular problem. Cesc is just coming back from injury and he is not ready to play in the game. Diaby is out and Koscielny has a small muscular problem.

“Bendtner and Eboue are not in the squad because they might be going out of the Club.

“Koscielny and Nasri might be back for the start of the season. I don’t think Fabregas will be ready to start the season because he has been out for a long time and has had no games. Walcott might be back and, as for Wilshere, it is very difficult to say.”

I hope Wenger brings in a couple of strong players that never get injured, as this year seems to be starting the same as every year, with an injury list that usually gets much longer very quickly….

Wenger-We hope to give ARSENAL fans some good news next week

Arsene Wenger understands that some Arsenal fans have become frustrated with the lack of movement in the transfer market and has explained what he thinks the reasons are behind it, but he is hopeful that he can announce the signing of a “super-quality” player next week.

“Ideally I would have finished all our business but it doesn’t work like that,” Wenger said. “We work very hard, we are non-stop working throughout the summer. I am positive because we have good quality and a style of play that is known by the players. So we want to add not quality but super quality.”

“You have to identify the players, agree with clubs to get them out, agree the fee,” he continued. “That means they have to agree with you and they have to find another player before they release their players.

“In England, it is a lot more difficult to move during the summer because some people are not there. It’s all kinds of things you meet during the transfer market. But I can understand the impatience of people.”

When asked if he thought that any announcements were likely very soon, he said: “No, not at the moment,”

“We hope to give you some good news soon. Next week, something might happen.”

If there is one thing we could all do with right now, it’s some good news!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Arsenal Rumours 5th august-Bentner,Parker,Samba,Barton,and Fabregas

There is very little actual Arsenal transfer news about today, but there are lots of rumours! The main story seems to be the appearance of Cesc Fabregas at the Members Day at the Emirates. Although he was applauded by the crowd, most papers have got pictures of him looking decidedly glum and sulky at in the open training session.

Some papers are saying Arsenal have rejected yet another Barcelona offer, and one says that Wenger will threaten Barcelona with playing him in the Champions League Qualifier to get him cup-tied for Barca. I think if the deal isn’t done before then, the Gunners will have a very unhappy captain for another year….

It seems that Stoke have now emerged as a new contender for Nicklas Bendtner’s signature. Although I am not a great fan of the big-headed Dane, I feel sure he will score goals for anyone if played as a centre-forward. Perhaps buyers have been put off by his ego (and his wages!). Stoke might be the perfect match for him though as they love long balls into the box……

Chris Samba is definitely old news, and the best the papers can come up with today is that Blackburn have priced him at £12m. This price has been fluctuating all summer so I reckon that one was just a space filler, although one paper said that Spurs had offered £6m plus a player (any player?)……

The Metro reckons that Arsenal and Tottenham are both going to make a bid for Scott Parker, and Sam Allardyce is sure he will be leaving West Ham, but I can’t see Wenger taking him unless it was just for one year….

And of course, last but not least, the ever-Twittering Twit Joey Barton is continually slagging off his (ex-)club Newcastle while saying how much he loves the bland-and-white. Arsenal are one of the players linked with him, but Alan Pardew has not ruled out him staying at Newcastle for his final season.

I really can’t see Wenger paying any amount of money for such an outspoken trouble-maker. I’d rather have Parker any day. Wouldn’t you?

Can Wenger make up his mind over Nasri ?

I’m not counting on anything or anyone until the transfer window is over and with good cause. It is now being reported that Nasri will be allowed to join Manchester City for £20 million.

According to TalkSport Radio Arsenal are now willing to listen to offers. They report: “the Arsenal manager has had a change of heart and will decide to flog Nasri this summer in order to get a transfer fee back for him. Roberto Mancini is set to make a £20m bid for the 24-year-old this week and Arsenal are ready to listen to the offer as they prepare for Nasri’s exit.”

I wonder if Wenger and the Arsenal management are changing their mind on a whim or if they are following some kind of plan? It certainly does seem like they are making it all up as they go along.

Don’t get me wrong £20 million for a player that only has one year left on his contract would be a great deal for Arsenal. But only if they put the money to good use and use it to buy a replacement midfielder. What is the point of putting the money in the bank and not investing in the squad?

The draw with Udinese sandwiched between matches against Liverpool and Manchester United show the need for a strong squad that can cope with a full and intense fixtures program.

The flip-flopping decision making about the future of Nasri is bad enough. I just hope it doesn’t get worse by leaving a sale to the last moment preventing us from brining in a replacement.

Wenger – I love you Cesc, Please don’t go!

What on Earth is going on with Arsene Wenger and Cesc Fabregas? It seemed like it was a business relationship that went wrong, but now it is turning into a soap opera.

Arsene Wenger took Cesc Fabregas away from Pep Guardiola (his first love) and tried to persuade him that his life would be better in London at Arsenal, but Wenger hasn’t delivered the trophies and accolades promised when he jilted Pep.

Now Fabregas realises he made a big mistake and wants to return to his first love, and is even willing to leave Wenger with the house, the car, the empty trophy room and everything, but Wenger is hanging onto his coat-tails and pleading with him to stay.

Wenger said today (and I can’t believe this saga has sunk so low): “I love Fabregas and I want him to stay, that is basically it.

“Everybody is free to think what they want. We cannot stop people raising questions.”

I am flabbergasted! It is so blatantly obvious the Fabregas has no intention of living with Wenger any longer, and he has refused to travel to Portugal to play Benfica.

Wenger is now coming out with ridiculous statements like: “He is just coming back from injury and is not ready to play in a game. But he is not injured.”

“I do not want to speak about the transfer of Fabregas because I have done that three years now in every press conference so I don’t think there is any more need to add something.

For Christ’s sake Wenger, just get over it! Fabregas will never again share your life. Let him move back to the lover that promised him the trophies he desired, and he wants to go back and get them before its too late!

You may love Fabregas, but his heart has been won by another…..

Official: Manchester City signs goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon from FC Timisoara

The Romanian played against his new team last year in the Europa League and will provide cover for first choice Joe Hart after the departure of Shay Given to Aston Villa.

Manchester City has signed goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon from FC Timisoara for an undisclosed fee.

The Romanian will be understudy to Joe Hart after the departure of Shay Given to Aston Villa, but the club has confirmed on its official website that the Romanian is still awaiting a work permit.

The 24-year-old has represented his country 13 times since making his debut in 2008 and played twice against City in last season’s Europa League, where the Citizens emerged triumphant.

Pantilimon becomes the club's fourth signing of the summer after following the footsteps of Gael Clichy, Stefan Savic and Sergio Aguero.

Agent of Manchester United's Nemanja Vidic rules out Juventus move

The Serbian defender has no intention of joining Juventus after becoming a key member of the United squad, and he has not even been approached by the Italian side.

A representative of Manchester United defender Nemanja Vidic has excluded the possibility of the player joining Juventus in the summer.

Paolo Fabbri, an associate of Silvano Martina, who represents the player in Italy, guaranteed there is no substance to reports linking the 29-year-old with a potential move to the Turin outfit

"I am totally surprised," Paolo Fabbri told "It is no secret that Juventus like him and they wanted him last summer. But the player renewed his contracted, negotiations I followed personally, after Manchester United guaranteed he would become a symbol."

The Serbia international has long been the subject of affection from the Serie A giants after establishing himself as one of the game's top stoppers since joining United in 2006.

"There is nothing true about that, those are stories created by newspapers which do not know what to write," Fabbri said. "Vidic is the captain of Manchester United and the best defender on the team."

Vidic, who has 54 international caps to his name, moved to Manchester United from Spartak Moscow for a fee in the region of 10 million euros.

Philadelphia removes Carlos Valdes' loan tag and make move permanent

Gutsy defender has been a big reason for club's turnaround this season.

The Philadelphia Union announced on Friday that it had made Carlos Valdes one of its permanent players after a deal was arranged with his parent club Independiente Santa Fe. The club also confirmed that forward Carlos Ruiz has been transferred to Veracruz.

Joining the Union this offseason, Valdes, 26, has made 20 appearances for Peter Nowak's side and has impressed mightily in the team's push to the top of the Eastern Conference.

Capped four times by the Colombian national team, Valdes can now focus on settling even further with the club and in the Philadelphia area.

Up next for the Union is the Houston Dynamo on Saturday as the sides battle for positioning in a very tight Eastern Conference table.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

宮市亮 / Ryo Miyaichi - Japan's Rising Star Arsenal / Feyenoord 2011 HD

Nasri is the best 2010-2011|| special one || HD

Arsenal for life~~

Barcelona superstar Dani Alves answers your questions

The Brazilian fullback takes time out of his schedule to respond to his fans

If you had just one question for Dani Alves, what would you ask him? Well, is now giving you the chance to quiz the Brazil international right back.

On August 15, Dani Alves will answer a select number of readers' questions.
Who is his favorite player? What are his ambitions? Is this Barcelona team the greatest of all time?

To be in with a chance of having your query answered, simply leave your questions for Dani in the comments box below, along with your name and location.

Alternatively, ask Dani your questions through Twitter by using the #AskAlves hashtag.

Think carefully, as only the best ones will be chosen. All questions must be submitted before 2300 CET on Saturday August 6 to be considered

Liverpool's Damien Comolli: 'Javier Pastore is a marquee signing for PSG and French football'

Director of football feels capital club could be in a league of its own in the coming years, but believes that the Premier League will still be a more attractive destination

Liverpool's director of football Damien Comolli has hailed Paris Saint-Germain's capture of Javier Pastore, saying snapping up young talent who can develop into world-class stars is the way forward for clubs.

The Argentine had only recently revealed that he will join the Ligue 1 outfit pending a medical, insisting that he is going to a club with "great history".

With PSG having spent over €40 million on players the summer, much like Manchester City in the Premier League, the Frenchman believes that the club could be in "a league of their own" in due course.

"Pastore is a marquee signing for PSG and French football," Comolli told BBC Sport.

"He is a very, very talented boy. He could have a massive impact at PSG and in French football. PSG looked at Ganso and Adel Taarabt, but they decided to go for Pastore. The strategy to go and buy younger players, who could become world stars like Pastore, is the right one. PSG could be in a league of their own for the next five to 10 years."

However, the 38-year-old maintained that the Premier League and La Liga will always remain better destinations for established players.

"The Premier League or the Spanish will be a lot more attractive for [established] players," he said. "I think a top player will always want to play for Liverpool before PSG because of its history and the Premier League's competitiveness."

Phil Jones enjoying the 'rollercoaster' of life at Manchester United

England Under-21 international taken aback by move to the Red Devils and hopes to force his way into Sir Alex Ferguson's first-team plans but knows it will be hard work

Phil Jones has admitted he was surprised by how quickly his move to Manchester United from Blackburn Rovers came about.

The defender moved to Old Trafford in June for a fee reportedly in the region of £16 million (€18.5m) but Jones has revealed no one was more surprised than him about the transfer.

"It has all happened so quickly," he told Inside United. "I am 19 and I did not expect so much to occur at such an early stage of my career. I am just riding the rollercoaster at the minute and enjoying everything.”

The England Under-21 international is eyeing a place in the United starting lineup but he admits he will have to work to get into Sir Alex Ferguson’s first team plans.

"I did play every week at Blackburn and want to do the same at United," he said. "But I am a realistic person and I know that is not going to happen with the quality of player we have here. As I improve and show good performances in training, hopefully I will get an opportunity and will take it."

Real Madrid interested in Chivas forward Carlos Fierro

The Mexican striker's displays have not gone unnoticed in Europe, with La Liga's giants understood to be vying for his signature.

Real Madrid is hot on the trail of Chivas Guadalajara striker Carlos Fierro, US Latino has learned.

The Mexico Under-17 international has emerged as one of the most in-demand players in the Americas, with interest in the striker escalating after a convincing display against Barcelona earlier in the week.

A source close to the player has told that Fierro, who is also believed to be followed by Barcelona, has a strong appeal for Real Madrid.

It is thought that the Spanish capital club have had an emergency meeting to discuss the possibility of signing Fierro, who scored four goals at the FIFA U17 World Cup, which Mexico won.

Former Manchester United midfielder Paul Scholes: I will quit coaching if it does not work out

The ex-Red Devils star admits that if he's not suited to the role he will have no problem giving it up but is willing to give it a try after 17 years as an Old Trafford player

Former Manchester United midfielder Paul Scholes has revealed he will quit football coaching if he finds he is not up to it.

Scholes retired from the game following Manchester United’s 3-1 defeat to Barcelona in the Champions League final in May after playing 17 years with the club.

The former England international was then offered a coaching role with United by boss Sir Alex Ferguson.

The midfielder admitted he hadn’t thought about his future after he retired until recently as he believed he could still fulfil a role for the Red Devils. He also revealed his options were restricted to football in terms of his working knowledge so he feels duty-bound to give it a go.

"A couple of years ago I felt like my career was never going to end, so you don't think about what to do in the future in the same way as I have done over the past six months," Scholes told Inside United. "Football is the only thing I know a little bit about so I am going to give the coaching a go. If it doesn't work or I am not very good at it I won't carry on doing it."

Robin Van Persie-the amazing striker and will be a legend in ARSENAL

Liverpool's Stewart Downing not paying attention to 20m pound price tag

The England winger insists performances on the pitch and not transfer fees will define him at Anfield and reveals the new-found ambition at the club by targeting a title win.
Stewart Downing has dismissed his 20 million pound price tag and maintains that his performances on the pitch will make or break him as a Liverpool player.

Downing moved to Anfield along with Jordan Henderson and Charlie Adam this summer as Kenny Dalglish looks to build a side capable of regaining a top-four finish.

"It's about picking up where I finished off last season with Aston Villa, carrying on my form and not doing anything differently," he told reporters. "Just because of the fee, it doesn't mean I have to change.

"I'm being brought in to do what I did at Aston Villa, whether that's on the left or right. I'm not sure where the manager sees me playing but I just want to do well for Liverpool. Last season was probably my most consistent season and I just want that to continue. It's a big season for me personally and the club, and I want to get in the England team as well. Hopefully Liverpool will see the best of me."

Liverpool's aim is to once again compete in the Champions League, but Downing believes that the club could eventually be aiming even higher.

"This club has high expectations and it's a club that deserves to be in Europe," he said. "In the past they've have done very well and I'm sure the players and the manager will want to do well for the owners and get into that top bracket.

"I think we've certainly got the squad now, there's a lot competition for places in a way there maybe hasn't been in the past, so I think it's got to be an aim.

"In the long term the ambition would be to win the league, it doesn't happen overnight, it's a building process and hopefully we've started it with the players Kenny's brought in this summer, along with the top players he already had.

Former Japan international Naoki Matsuda passes away aged 34

The Yokohama F. Marinos legend has lost his battle for life after he was rushed into intensive care after collapsing in training earlier this week

Japan's 2002 World Cup star defender Naoki Matsuda passed away today after collapsing at club training on Tuesday morning following a cardiopulmonary arrest.

The Japan international and Yokohama F. Marinos legend was just 34 years old.

Matsuda had been in a critical condition after being rushed to the hospital on Tuesday having collapsed after finishing a warm-up run with club Matsumoto Yamaga. Doctors placed Matsuda on an artificial respirator and said he was in an "extremely critical" condition.

Matsumoto manager Yoshiyuki Kato had told a press conference that Matsuda's condition hadn't improved on Wednesday.

Matsuda passed away on Thursday at 13:06 local time.

Doctors believe he may have suffered a heart attack which may have been due to the rising temperatures in Japan.

Kyodo News reported there had been a recorded 43 deaths in two months through the end of July due to heat stroke in Japan.

The former Japan international spent 15 years at Yokohama, making 385 appearances and scoring 17 goals, before joining Matsumoto earlier this year.

Barcelona's Pep Guardiola unfazed by heavy Chivas defeat

The Champions League-winning boss isn't too worried about his side's friendly loss and is confident his team will be ready for the Spanish Supercopa.

Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola admitted that the Catalans' preseason isn't going according to plan following their latest pre-season loss to Chivas de Guadalajara, but added that he is confident his players will deliver when it matters most.

The Spanish champion was beaten by Manchester United last week and was humbled on Wednesday as Chivas proved to be too strong, running out 4-1 winner.

"We are a bit behind on schedule for several reasons. However, I have a lot of confidence in these players and I know we'll play better in the league and the other competitions," Guardiola said in the post-match press conference.

"The Spanish Supercopa and European Supercup are pretty close, but we will improve in the upcoming weeks. The mentality of the players will make the difference. We need a bit more time. I know that there's not much more time left, but we'll be ready."

Barcelona takes on Real Madrid in the Spanish Supercopa on Aug. 14 at Santiago Bernabeu and meets its rival at Camp Nou three days later. The European Supercup against Porto will be played in Monaco on Aug. 26.

"We have to forget about this result and shift our focus to the upcoming games," Guardiola said. "This loss won't change anything for us."

Sneijder's 3-4-3 incompatibility, Alvarez's lack of pace - question marks hang over Gian Piero Gasperini's Inter

A mixed pre-season, with injuries and absences taking their toll, means the team must adjust quickly to overcome AC Milan and clinch Supercoppa glory.

As Inter prepares for a heated Supercoppa Italiana battle against neighbor AC Milan on Saturday in Beijing's Bird's Nest, life thus far under Gian Piero Gasperini has yet to truly take flight.
Pre-season friendlies have been a mixed bag for the ex-Genoa man’s new side. The Dublin Super Cup presented difficult challenges, where the world champion defeated Celtic but then lost to Manchester City a day later.

Given the Premier League’s earlier start to the season than Serie A, perhaps some blame can be ascribed to superior fitness on the Citizens' part. Inter has also been missing a large number of important players, including Julio Cesar and captain Javier Zanetti, due to Copa America commitments. However, the team, as of yet, has not fully responded to Gasperini’s methods.
The side plays much like his old Genoa, primarily utilizing a 3-4-3 formation, although Gasperini has tried a number of different formations based on the personnel available. The trio of center-backs often sits deep and only pushes forward individually, if at all. The midfield quartet can be separated into two groups, with the two central midfielders playing in a traditional defensive-offensive coupling and the two wide men often pushing forward to support the attack.

Theoretically this should give Inter a numerical advantage, especially towards the defensive half of the side, but the system was exposed against Galatasaray due to sloppy play.
Questions must be asked as to whether Wesley Sneijder, so lethal as a trequartista, is being wasted by playing deeper in the line-up. His days at Ajax have given him the tactical flexibility to play in many different positions, but his acquisition was initially heralded as a missing link between the midfield and attack.

Indeed, it has been the offense that has given most cause for concern under Gasperini. Ricardo Alvarez had a bright start to life in black and blue but has shown some difficulty adjusting against tougher sides. Furthermore, the likes of Samuel Eto'o and Giampaolo Pazzini may be wasted in a front three without proper midfield support. Gasperini’s formation is an interesting one that tries to emphasize attacking play, but could result in squeezing many of Inter’s players into unfamiliar roles.

The Nerazzurri may find life rather difficult against Milan given the aforementioned absences, along with missing Yuto Nagatomo and back-up keeper Emiliano Viviano. Massimiliano Allegri’s side has reinforced quietly over the summer, adding key ingredients to an already-winning formula in the form of Philippe Mexes and Taye Taiwo. Manchester City proved that a physically domineering team can be immensely effective against a developing Inter, a fact that could favor the Serie A champion given the nature of players such as Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Mark van Bommel.
Beneamata fans need not despair, however. The outfit should undoubtedly develop a better understanding over time, if Massimo Moratti can exercise more patience with Gasperini than he has shown with the likes of Rafael Benitez. Unlike the City game, this is an official match with a desired trophy on the line against an eternal rival; form going into derbies often has little effect on the final outcome.

For Gasperini's side to take home silverware from China, they must look to stretch Milan’s defense and attack the full-back positions, the weak point of the Rossoneri in recent seasons. Allegri's men, though, are definitely early favorites, as the team has had a full year playing under the same tactician, and can call upon a proven midfield that runs on grit. Gasperini’s Inter may yet come good, but the decision to stick with his trusted formation rather than one that better suits his players could yet haunt him.

Tracked by Barcelona and heading for Liverpool - Jose Enrique is ready to become Spain's new left back

The 25-year-old defender was Joan Capdevila's predecessor at Villarreal and could become the veteran's successor for La Roja as Vicente del Bosque prepares for Euro 2012.

Jose Enrique appears ready for the big time. Cast adrift by coaches early on his career, forced to ply his trade in the lower divisions and then work his way up, the road to the top has been long and at times arduous for Liverpool's prospective new left back, but the move to Merseyside may be just the tonic he needs to take that final step and claim the coveted left back position for his country.

Now 25, the Valencia-born defender began his career at Levante B in Spain's Third Division. Opportunities were few and far between, however, until one day, the player confronted his coach. The reply from boss Jose Luis Oltra was simple: when the left back is sent off, you will get your chance. That happened the following Sunday and it represented the start of something special for the promising player.

After 19 appearances and one goal for Levante, Jose Enrique was snapped up by city rival Valencia, although the youngster endured a prickly relationship with coach Quique Sanchez Flores and failed to make a single appearance at Mestalla.

Loaned to Celta Vigo, the left back was unable to displace former Argentina defender Diego Placente, but still made 14 league appearances and received rave reviews in Galicia, where Joan Capdevila was turning in solid performances week after week at regional rivals Deportivo La Coruna.

Jose Enrique went off to Villarreal and was joined at El Madrigal by Capdevila for a brief period in the summer of 2007. Capdevila had failed to reach agreement with Deportivo and was snapped up by Villarreal on a free transfer. Jose Enrique had enjoyed a fine debut season at the club, though, and many fans were briefly bewildered at the need for two such quality left backs.

Jose Enrique was soon made available, however, and Newcastle beat Liverpool and Manchester City in the race for his signature. "A big offer came in for me," the player explained last year in an interview. "They paid just over 9 million euros for me, which was a million more than Chelsea had paid for Asier del Horno."

Del Horno, signed by Jose Mourinho after coming through the youth ranks and impressing at Athletic Bilbao, was seen as Spain's fullback of the future, but the Basque has since slipped down the ladder and is now at Levante, where Jose Enrique started out.

Official: Chelsea signs Barcelona youngster Oriol Romeu

The Blues have announced that the Spanish teenager has joined on a four-year contract, while it has been reported that Barca has a buy back option on the young midfielder.

Chelsea has announced the signing of Barcelona midfielder Oriol Romeu on a four-year deal.

The Blues confirmed last month that they had agreed a fee believed to be in the region of 4.5 million pounds for the defensive midfielder to make a move to the west London club.

The club confirmed on its official website: "Chelsea Football Club is delighted to announce the signing of Oriol Romeu Vidal from Barcelona on a four-year-contract. The 19-year-old will join us once his duties with Spain's U-20 World Cup squad in Colombia are complete."

According to El Mundo Deportivo, Barca will have a chance to buy back the midfielder for a certain fee during the first two years of his time in England. But during the next two years of his contract, the Spanish club would get preference if it matches an offer that has already been accepted for the player.

Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas is believed to have harbored an interest in Romeu since his days at Porto, and has assured the teenager that he has a role to play in the first team.

As well as playing for his country at Under-20 level, Romeu has also represented Spain at the Under-17 and Under-19 levels in the past.