Zaha wants Man Utd future

Wilfried Zaha wants to return to Manchester United this summer and hopes to have a future at the club under Louis van Gaal, the Daily Mail has reported. Zaha moved to United ahead of last season, leaving Crystal Palace in a £15m deal, but couldn’t nail down a place in the side under David Moyes. Zaha was eventually sent on loan to Cardiff City for the second half of the season, while Moyes was sacked in April. It’s not yet known if Zaha will be with United for pre-season as…

Read More

Arsenal boss Wenger scouting Schneiderlin

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has been watching Southampton’s France international Morgan Schneiderlin at the World Cup and could make an approach for the midfielder, the Daily Mail has reported. It’s said that Wenger watched Schneiderlin in France’s win over Ecuador while working for French television and is a long-term fan of the 24-year-old. But the Saints are understood to be reluctant to sell as Adam Lallana prepares to move to Liverpool. Southampton are said to see Schneiderlin as a replacement as captain for Lallana and new Coach Ronald Koeman will…

Read More

Palace to make Caulker approach

Crystal Palace manager Tony Pulis is to make an £8m offer for Cardiff City defender Steven Caulker, the Daily Telegraph has reported. Palace are expected to face competition for the former Tottenham Hotspur centre-back from Queens Park Rangers, with Caulker free to leave the Welsh capital after Cardiff’s relegation due to an escape clause in his contract. Caulker moved to Cardiff from Spurs last summer, having previously been on loan at Swansea City. He played in every one of Cardiff’s Premier League games last season but couldn’t help the Bluebirds…

Read More

Lahm: Algeria prefer to foul

Germany captain Philipp Lahm has accused World Cup opponents Algeria of playing dirty, according to the Daily Telegraph. The sides meet on Monday in the Round of 16 and while Lahm called for his teammates to rise to the occasion, he also pointed the finger at Algeria and claimed they cross the line with some of their challenges. “They prefer to foul than lose the ball,” Lahm said. “It is an unpleasant team to play. But we have to unleash a performance, play aggressively, defend aggressively and show how classy…

Read More

Mikel not concerned by Chelsea’s Fabregas signing

John Obi Mikel isn’t worried by the increased competition for places at Chelsea after the signing of former Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas from Barcelona, ESPN has reported. Mikel, who is currently representing Nigeria at the World Cup, said that he is pleased to see Fabregas move to Stamford Bridge and argued that their positions within midfield are different, and he doesn’t see the Spain international as a threat as he feels at home at the club. “There’s no problem with Cesc’s arrival. We don’t play in the same position. It’s…

Read More

World Cup blog – Nigeria and Algeria aim to banish Africa’s bickering image

Algeria and Nigeria can continue Africa’s breakthrough World Cup in Monday’s Round of 16 fixtures, Bradley King writes, as they face European heavyweights Germany and France. Many of the common prejudices about African football still poke through in the modern game. This World Cup acts as a handy abstract of the problems which have often threatened to eclipse the continent’s on-field exploits. Cameroon’s feeble campaign was overshadowed by demands over bonuses, while Ghana’s early exit was also precluded with tales of financial wrangling, as well as player misdemeanour. Throw in…

Read More

Arsenal told to stump up £40m for Di Maria

Real Madrid have told the queue of English clubs that Argentinean winger Angel Di Maria will cost them a whopping £40m if he is to leave the Bernebeu this summer, according to the Metro. Arsenal and Manchester United are all keeping tabs on the flying wide man who impressed during the Champions League final and now with Argentina in Brazil, and after recently admitting he is unsure where he will be playing next season put the host of clubs on alert. Real previously took the stance that they would not…

Read More

Man City, Tottenham to wait for Depay talks

Manchester City target Memphis Depay has said he is yet to hold any talks with clubs as the Netherlands advanced to the quarter finals of the World Cup, insiting that talks will have to wait while they are still in the competition, the Daily Express is reporting. Depay, who is also attracting interest from Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur, has said he is aware of the English top flight interest but his agent, in Brazil with the player, has not spoke with clubs. The 20-year-old has been one of the…

Read More

Barcelona to add bite clause to Suarez deal

Barcelona are reportedly set to offer Liverpool forward Luis Suarez a deal that could see him earn £40m, but will insert a ‘bite clause’ to ensure his behaviour is maintained, according to reports. Suarez has been shamed at this summer’s World Cup after he was caught biting Italian defender Georgio Chiellini on the shoulder as they clashed during their group game – and subsequently FIFA imposed a nine match international ban and a staggering four month ban from all football activity. However the Catalan giants are still eager to sign…

Read More

Liverpool set to sign Origi

Liverpool appear to have won the battle for Belgian starlet Divock Origi, reports the Mirror, after Tottenham and West Ham made last ditch efforts to sign the striker. MirrorSport has understood that both London clubs made late swoops for the teenager, who is impressing as part of the Belgium squad at this summer’s World Cup, even offering a first team birth for the striker in attempt to close out any deal. But it appears that Liverpool have won the battle, after reportedly agreeing a fee thought to be £9.8m –…

Read More

France goalkeeper Lloris wary of Nigeria test

France goalkeeper Hugo Lloris has urged his side to keep up their impressive form when they take on Nigeria in the second round of the World Cup on Monday, the Daily Star has reported. Les Bleus hit eight goals in their opening two group stage matches, before drawing 0-0 with Ecuador to guarantee top spot in Group E. Karim Benzema in particular has impressed, scoring three goals in the tournament so far, while players such as Olivier Giroud, Moussa Sissoko and Mathieu Valbuena have also weighed in with goals. They…

Read More

Balotelli ‘prepared to force through Arsenal move’

Milan striker Mario Balotelli is reportedly ready to force through a move to Arsenal, with the 23-year-old intent on leaving Italy again this summer, writes the Metro. Balotelli feels that he has been made a scapegoat after Italy’s exit at the group stage of the World Cup, and has no desire to ply his trade in Serie A next season. Arsenal have been interested in the player in recent weeks, and he is looking to capitalise by making Milan aware that he is looking to leave. Arsenal have set their…

Read More

Pinto: Penalty practice helped Costa Rica

Costa Rica boss Jorge Luis Pinto has revealed that intense practice and studying the opposition helped his side to their penalty shootout win over Greece on Sunday, BBC Sport has reported. The Central American side won 5-3 on penalties after a 1-1 draw to make the quarter-finals of the World Cup for the first time ever after a dramatic encounter in Recife. The Greeks missed out despite controlling long periods of the game. In a first half if few chances, Dimitrios Salpingidis came closest when his angled shot was well…

Read More

Tottenham set to sign Swansea defender Davies

Tottenham are set to make Swansea City and Wales left-back Ben Davies their first signing of the summer after they were given permission to talk to the 21-year-old, according to the Daily Mirror. New Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino has made signing a new left-back his priority this summer after identifying the position as a weak area of his team. He believes Davies provides better defensive qualities than his current options, which include last season’s first-choice Danny Rose, and the long-serving Benoit Assou-Ekotto. Davies was given his chance in the Swansea…

Read More

Man Utd move closer to Vermaelen signing

Manchester United are edging closer to the signing of Arsenal defender Thomas Vermaelen, with the Belgian having agreed personal terms with the Red Devils, according to Talksport. The deal is now dependent on whether the two clubs can agree a fee, with Arsenal’s asking price believed to be around £10m, for a player who has just one year remaining on his current contract. The North London club are willing to allow Vermaelen to leave. The 28-year-old has found himself out of favour at the Emirates Stadium in the last year…

Read More

Herrera accuses Robben after Mexico defeat

Mexico manager Miguel Herrera has accused Netherlands winger Arjen Robben of cheating after his side were knocked out of the World Cup on Sunday in a dramatic 2-1 defeat, Sky Sports has reported. Herrera’s side dominated the first half possession, with midfielders Hector Herrera and Carlos Salcido both coming close to opening the scoring. The breakthrough came early in the second half when Giovani dos Santos found the corner of the net from 25 yards, raising hopes that Mexico could reach the last eight of a World Cup for the…

Read More

World Cup blog: Round of 16 fixtures defying expectations and predictions

Sunday’s World Cup Round of 16 games see an unlikely fixture between Costa Rica and Greece and an intriguing tactical battle between the Netherlands and Mexico, Andrew Tuft writes… There may have been more unlikely Round of 16 games in World Cup history, but pairings more surprising than Costa Rica and Greece don’t immediately spring to mind. On Sunday evening the two meet having been given little to no chance of getting past the group stage but one of them is bound for the quarter-finals. They will play the winners…

Read More

Herrera ‘can’t wait’ to play for van Gaal

New Manchester United signing Ander Herrera has said that he cannot wait to start playing under the club’s new manager Louis van Gaal, ESPN has reported. Man Utd met Herrera’s buyout clause in order to make him their first summer signing on Thursday, joining after three years at Athletic Bilbao, where he scored 11 goals in 128 appearances. Van Gaal takes charge of Man Utd after the arrives back from leading the Dutch national team at the World Cup in Brazil, and Herrera admits that he is looking forward to…

Read More

West Ham eye move for Meireles

West Ham United are preparing a bid for former Liverpool and Chelsea midfielder Raul Meireles, who is set to leave Fenerbahce this summer, according to the Daily Star. Meireles left Stamford Bridge after just one season in the summer of 2012 to join the Turkish side, for whom he has made 57 appearances over two years, scoring five goals. Despite having two years remaining on his current contract, Fenerbahce are now ready to listen to any offers of over £3m for the Portugal international. The Hammers had a bid for…

Read More

Arsenal favourites to sign Sanchez and Schneiderlin

Arsenal are emerging as favourites to sign Barcelona forward Alexis Sanchez and Southampton midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin, according to the Daily Express. Reports in France have suggested that the Gunners are leading the race for the duo, despite competition from some of their Premier League rivals. Sanchez has been linked with Liverpool in recent days, but a bid of £32m could see the Barcelona man move to North London. Sanchez scored 19 goals in La Liga this season, but his future has come under question since the appointment of Luis Enrique…

Read More

Michu ‘passes Napoli medical’

According to reports in Spain, Swansea City forward Miguel Michu has passed a medical with Coppa Italia winners Napoli ahead a possible move, writes the Daily Express. Michu has spent two seasons in South Wales. In the first of those, he proved a revelation, scoring 18 Premier League goals in helping Swansea to their first top half finish in the Premier League. Last time around, however, he was left frustrated by persistent injury problems and was reduced to just 24 outings in all competitions. Arsenal, Liverpool and West Ham United…

Read More

Man Utd consider move for de Jong

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal could be set to try and bring midfielder Nigel de Jong to Old Trafford this summer, according to the Daily Star. De Jong, who spent four years with bitter rivals Manchester City, is a key component of van Gaal’s Dutch national side, which takes on Mexico in their World Cup second round match on Sunday. Man Utd are in the market for a holding midfield player, and they are reportedly readying a £10m bid for the 29-year-old. Having left Man City in August 2012,…

Read More

Brazil three games away from ‘heaven’, says Scolari

Brazil manager Luiz Felipe Scolari has said that his side are just three games away from ‘heaven’ after they defeated Chile on penalties in the World Cup second round, BBC Sport has reported. In a dramatic match played in a sensational atmosphere at the Estadio Minerao in Belo Horizonte, Brazil took the lead after a quarter of an hour, when David Luiz got the final touch at the far post from a corner. However, Alexis Sanchez levelled for Jorge Sampaoli’s side after capitalising on some sloppy defending from the hosts.…

Read More

World Cup blog: South Americans vying for last eight place

After 48 group stage matches, the race for World Cup success intensifies as the knockout stages begin with two ties between sides from South America, and Stephen Donovan believes they are both tough to call. The second round of the World Cup gets underway on Saturday with two eagerly awaited all South American encounters, with Brazil taking on Chile in Belo Horizonte before Colombia face Uruguay at the Maracana, with the two winners to meet in the quarter-finals. The opening game of the knockout stages is undoubtedly one of the…

Read More

Tabarez to quit FIFA role on back of Suarez ban

Uruguay chief Oscar Tabarez has quit his role at football’s world governing body in protest of the punishment handed out to shamed star Luis Suarez, Sky Sports has reported, stating he felt the player had been made a ‘scapegoat’. Suarez was banned for nine international matches and all football activity for four months after he was found guilty of biting Georgio Cheillini on the shoulder during his county’s 1-0 win over Italy. The striker flew back to hometown Montevideo in disgrace after his FIFA accreditation was revoked for the World…

Read More