5 Trends in football for the 2020s

Women’s football We’ll see an increase in the popularity of women’s football, as the infrastructure for women’s teams improves. Rich clubs like Man City provide top of the range facilities and the level of the game, along with it’s popularity, will soar. Young girls especially will embrace women’s football like never before, as parents push them in that direction to learn off positive female role models. Emergence of English managers The old generation of English managers are viewed as behind the times, and unwilling to embrace the technicalities and tactics…

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“Grealish staying at Aston Villa”

Jack Grealish

Aston Villa manager Dean Smith has poured cold water on reports that Jack Grealish will be making a summer exit from Villa park. Grealish has been often linked with a move to Tottenham, most recently in the January transfer window, but the Midlands club have been able to keep hold of him while in the Championship. That situation may change on Monday should they defeat Derby County in the Championship Play-off Final, but promotion or not, Smith has warned off potential suitors for the attacking midfielder: “He loves Aston Villa…

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The End of Solksjaer’s honeymoon period

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

Things were going so well at Old Trafford. Right up until early March, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s revitalised Manchester United team were beating almost everyone they met. Other than the home defeat to Paris Saint Germain in the first leg of their Champions League (CL) last-sixteen tie, no-one had managed to conquer Ole’s Red Devils. And United even went on to knock PSG out of the CL with that memorable win in France. However, that was the last notable victory Solskjaer’s team managed in the 2018/19 campaign. United did win two…

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Signing off in Baku – Sarri’s Chelsea days are numbered

It’s a strange atmosphere that surrounds Chelsea as they prepare for their Europa League final against Arsenal on May 29th. The club, which has won five Premier Leagues and a Champions League trophy all in the last 15 years, could be considered to be in limbo at the moment. Currently, at Stamford Bridge, there are far more questions than answers regarding the future of The Blues. Roman Abramovich seems to have lost interest in his not-so-shiny-anymore plaything, having pumped millions into player recruitment from when he acquired the club in…

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Emery’s Europa League love-affair bodes well for Arsenal

Unai Emery

Last Sunday, the curtain came down on the 2018/19 Premier League season for all 20 clubs. Manchester City were crowned champions, one point clear of Liverpool, while we said goodbye to Huddersfield, Fulham and Cardiff as they were relegated to the Championship. In fifth place came Arsenal, just a point behind their north London rivals, Spurs, and the coveted Champions League (CL) places. It was the second successive season The Gunners were outside the top-four having finished sixth a year ago as they said goodbye to club legend Arsene Wenger.…

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Gary Neville Wants New Fullbacks At Manchester United

Gary Neville

Manchester United legend Gary Neville believes the club needs to follow the footsteps of city rivals Manchester City and invest heavily on recruiting new fullbacks. The 44 year old, widely considered as the best right back in Man United’s history, have urged former teammate Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to splash the cash for bringing in a world class fullback rather than gambling on promising but unproved players, “I don’t know why United have had such problems at right-back. You can’t keep signing full-backs for £15m. Over the past few years they’ve…

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Tottenham join summer race for Sessegnon

Tottenham are ready to challenge some of Europe’s top sides in order to secure the services of Fulham star Ryan Sessegnon, reports the Telegraph. The 18-year-old’s contract expires at the end of next season, meaning this may be the last chance for the London side to cash-in on the highly rated left-winger, who was strongly linked with a move to Spurs last summer too. However Tottenham face competition from French giants PSG,German side Red Bull Leipzig, and in the Premier League from Manchester United. The figure reported is around £30m.…

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Solskjaer plans mass Utd changes in the summer

Manchester United’s new permanent manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could face one of the busiest summers in the club’s recent memory, according to Sky Sports, with up to six first team regulars preparing to depart Old Trafford for pastures new. The futures of some other players are also up in the air, while prospective transfer targets look as though they may be difficult – or at the very least highly expensive – to bring in as the club seeks to return towards the top of the Premier League next season. Ander…

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Real Madrid close to Hazard agreement

Chelsea star Eden Hazard is ‘on the cusp’ of agreeing a move to Spanish giants Real Madrid, according to a report in The Sun this morning. Last week it was reported that moves had begun to bring the Belgian to the Bernabeu, but those links appear to have grown over the weekend, and an agreement for a summer transfer could be found this week. It is thought a fee of £100m will be accepted. Hazard, 28, has been linked with a Stamford Bridge in the last two close seasons, but…

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West Ham Dzeko links return

Edin Dzeko

West Ham could be lining up a summer move for AS Roma striker Edin Dzeko, according to reports in the Express. Dzeko, 33, played under Hammers manager Mauricio Pellegrini at Manchester City, with the Bosnian scoring 50 goals in 130 matches, on his way to winning the Premier League twice, the FA Cup, League Cup and Community shield. West Ham have struggled for goals this term, currently having netted 41 times in the league, and their top scorer is midfielder Felipe Anderson, on 8 goals. Dzeko’s goalscoring has also slowed…

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Gotze makes new Liverpool hint

Borussia Dortmund midfielder Mario Götze has spoken again of his admiration for ex-boss Jurgen Klopp, prompting rumours of a potential reunion in the Summer. Gotze, 26, played under Klopp at Dortmund before both departed, with the Germany international heading to Bayern Munich for 3 years, before returning to the Signal-Iduna-Park stadium in 2016. But with just one year left on his contract, the World Cup winner, with 63 caps, has hinted that a potential link up with his old boss could be something he’d want to consider, having had discussions…

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Juventus confirm interest in Arsenal’s Aaron Ramsey

Juventus have officially signalled their interest in signing Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey whose contract expires in the summer, and is attracting interest from some of Europe’s top clubs. The midfielder was set to sign a new contract at the club before it was withdrawn amid a cloud of mystery earlier this season. With only six months left on his deal, the 28-year-old is now free to negotiate with foreign clubs under the Bosman ruling. The Juventus sporting director, Fabio Paratici, said of Ramsey: “He’s a great player, we really like…

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Chelsea sign Christian Pulisic from Borussia Dortmund for £58m

Chelsea have signed Borussia Dortmund forward Christian Pulisic for 64m euros (£58m) but will loan him to the German club until the end of the season. The 20-year-old United States international, who was linked with Liverpool and Arsenal, joined Dortmund as a youth player in 2015. Pulisic has scored nine goals in 23 games for the US. 🤝 @cpulisic_10 wechselt im Sommer zum @ChelseaFC! Der BVB hat sich mit dem FC Chelsea auf einen Transfer von Christian #Pulisic mit sofortiger Wirkung geeinigt, Chelsea wiederum leiht den 20-Jährigen bis zum Saisonende an den…

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West Ham sign Samir Nasri on day doping ban ends

West Ham have signed former Arsenal and Manchester City midfielder Samir Nasri – on the day he completes a doping ban. The 31-year-old Frenchman has been without a club since 31 January, after leaving Turkish club Antalyaspor. Nasri, who has signed a deal until the end of the season, served an 18-month doping ban for using an intravenous drip treatment but is available to play again from 1 January. He won two Premier League titles and the League Cup in six years with City. “Coming back to the most competitive…

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Arsenal manager Unai Emery fined for Brighton bottle incident

Unai Emery

Arsenal manager Unai Emery has been fined £8,000 by the Football Association for kicking a bottle which hit a Brighton fan during last week’s Premier League match between the sides. The FA charged Emery with improper conduct following the incident near the end of the 1-1 draw on 26 December. The Spaniard apologised for the incident, which was not included in the officials’ match report. “I said to them I’m sorry,” Emery said after the game. “It wasn’t hard but it touched one supporter.” An FA spokesperson said Emery had “accepted the…

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Tottenham extend Toby Alderweireld deal but activate £25m release clause

Tottenham will trigger the extension clause in defender Toby Alderweireld’s contract, but have also included a £25m release clause, manager Mauricio Pochettino says. The Belgium international’s current deal runs out next year but the club has an option to extend it until 2020. The release clause of £25m will apply up to the last two weeks of the summer transfer window. Pochettino said on Thursday: “It is the same situation as Jan [Vertonghen].” Spurs announced earlier in December that the club had extended Vertonghen’s contract until 2020. The Belgium defender is back…

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Napoli threaten to walk off over alleged racist chanting

Napoli have threatened to walk off the pitch if there is a repeat of the alleged racial abuse that defender Kalidou Koulibaly suffered during their 1-0 defeat to Inter Milan at the San Siro. The Senegal international lost his temper after being booked for a foul on Matteo Politano in the 81st minute and was sent off for applauding the referee’s decision. Ancelotti said Napoli had asked three times for the match to be stopped after Koulibaly was subjected to alleged racist chanting from the stands. Announcements were made on…

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Mateo Kovacic eyes permanent stay at Chelsea

Mateo Kovacic has admitted he “can imagine” staying on at Chelsea, but acknowledges that Real Madrid will have the final say on his future. The midfielder joined the London club on a season-long loan from the European champions after becoming frustrated at a lack of regular playing time in Spain. Kovacic has taken to life in the English capital, playing 23 times in all competitions for Maurizio Sarri’s Chelsea, and with the possibility of a permanent switch now being mooted, the 24-year-old is open to staying if all parties reach an agreement. “I…

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Manchester City receive timely boost with Silva return

Manchester City have been handed a timely reprieve from injuries as the club announced David Silva returned to training on Christmas Day and is in the running to face Leicester. The Spanish midfielder had been out of action since suffering a hamstring injury in City’s loss at Chelsea earlier this month, missing games against Hoffenheim, Everton, and the shock home defeat to Crystal Palace. The 32-year-old is now in the frame to play when City travel to Leicester on Boxing Day as Pep Guardiola’s side aim to claw back the four-point…

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Timothy Weah confirms January loan move away from PSG

Timothy Weah has confirmed he will leave Paris Saint-Germain on loan next month in order to gain more first-team experience. The United States international broke into the PSG squad at the end of last season, but has struggled to hold down a place in the current campaign and has not been in the matchday squad since August. He has only played three games in all competitions this season and hopes a loan move will help him improve as a player and put him in a better position to be a PSG regular…

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Lille reveal price for hotshot Arsenal target Nicolas Pepe

Lille winger Nicolas Pepe will only be allowed to leave the club for a fee of €80 million (£72m), according to the club’s sporting director. The 23-year-old has been linked with a number of Europe’s top clubs following an impressive start to the season that has seen him score 12 goals and provide five assists in 19 Ligue 1 appearances. Arsenal have consistently been mooted as a potential destination for the Ivorian international. “I hope he will stay this winter. We’ll do everything to keep him,” Lille sporting director Luis Campos…

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Arsenal dealt injury blow as Mkhitaryan is ruled out for up to six weeks

Arsenal have been handed a blow in the packed festive season after midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan was ruled out of action for up to six weeks with a fractured metatarsal in his right foot. Mkhitaryan, 29, was replaced at half-time during the Carabao Cup quarter-final loss to Tottenham and missed the Premier League win over Burnley. The Armenian has scored four goals and provided three assists for the Emirates Stadium side this season. He joins a lengthy injury list for Arsenal that also includes long-term absentees Danny Welbeck and Rob Holding, with both not…

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MLS Champions Atlanta United hire Frank de Boer as new head coach

Atlanta United have announced the appointment of Frank de Boer as the club’s new head coach. The former Ajax and Crystal Palace boss was only recently linked to the job vacated by Argentinean coach Tata Martino, and the club have now confirmed the hiring of only the second ever manager in its history. New chapter. Same mission.#ATLUTD name @FdeBoerOfficial as 2nd head coach in club history 📝 https://t.co/H2VX85UytQ pic.twitter.com/AT7rLstHHf — Atlanta United FC (@ATLUTD) December 23, 2018 “Frank de Boer has a distinguished background, both as manager and player, and…

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Inter Milan suspend Radja Nainggolan for ‘disciplinary reasons’

Inter Milan have suspended midfielder Radja Nainggolan for ‘disciplinary reasons’, the club confirmed in a statement on Sunday. The 30-year-old, who reportedly arrived late for training on three separate occasions in the last week, has also been fined a substantial sum of money. Nainggolan joined Inter from Roma for €38m in the summer and has since made 11 Serie A appearances for the club, with the latest a 67-minute appearance at Chievo on Saturday in a 1-1 draw. It is unlikelyNainggolan will feature in the Boxing Day fixture against Napoli. Inter are…

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Peter Bosz set for Bundesliga return with Bayer Leverkusen

Former Borussia Dortmund head coach Peter Bosz will make a return to the Bundesliga after being appointed by Bayer Leverkusen. The club confirmed the move on Sunday, as they announced Heiko Herrlich has been relieved of his duties. Leverkusen beat Hertha BSC 3-1 on Saturday in the final game before the winter break. However, they have now let Herrlich go with the club ninth in the Bundesliga and seven points adrift of the Champions League spots. Bosz will take over the side in January. Heiko Herrlich has been relieved of…

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