Philipp Lahm doesn’t appreciate and is not in agreement of the decision of the European Football Associations’ Union to increase the representation of the bigger competitions in the main draw of the European Cup.
Premiership, Bundesliga, La Liga and Serie A are the four biggest competitions in the continent at the moment and while, they already have quite a big representation in the main draw, UEFA reckons it needs to be increased.
Earlier, the teams finishing first, second and third in the Premiership, Bundesliga and La Liga respectively and those finishing first and second in the Serie A would make it to the main draw.
However, now there would be four representatives in the main draw from each of those competitions which means the title holders of the top divisions of some of the other countries would have to miss out and it seems unfair to Lahm.
Lahm’s side had just completed a 5-0 annihilation of a top division team from Russia, but, he still voiced support for smaller teams.
Derbies remain one of the highlights of the Premier League with the excitement it offers.
Manchester United vs. Manchester City meeting is one of such, and it is coming early in the season – fourth EPL game. The pedigree of the two managers, Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola brings more to the table as the expectations from both ends are very high. One Derby United would not forget in a hurry is the 6-1 demolition by City in 2011 – making Man United’s biggest loss in half a century.
Sergio Aguero has been suspended from the game, leaving Nigerian international Kelechi Iheanacho as the lead striker. There is the option of Nolito though. United have a strong attack this term, with Zlatan Ibrahimovic in front, leaving Wayne Rooney and Anthony Martial as support in the flanks. There’s also wonderboy Marcus Rashford as super sub. There’s an in-form David Silva, Kevin De Bruyne and a revitalized Raheem Sterling to do the job in the absence of Aguero.
Manchester United are reported to open to allow Matteo Darmian leave during the January transfer window with interests in the player piling up.
Despite the additions this summer, Juventus are reported to be keen on adding Darmian to their squad. Inter Milan is still following up on the player with the hopes of landing the Premier League player. French media say Coach Jose Mourinho has set his sight for Monaco player Fabinho during the next transfer window in January.
Fabinho is believed would be the replacement for Darmian, meaning the former Torino man could exit the Premier League sooner than expected. Darmian joined for £15.3 million, and has played 18 months so far, but could make a return to the Serie A. Other sides rumoured to be interested in the player include Fiorentina, Rome, and Napoli.
Manchester United summer target Jose Fonte was linked with a move to the club, but couldn’t complete it before the transfer deadline. “Was I disappointed the Man United move didn’t happen? Let’s leave that for another time. Now I’m focused on Southampton. I’ve lots of targets: to play in the Champions League, to play in a World Cup, to win a trophy in England,” Fonte said recently. The player was in action for Portugal at the Euro 2016, and was poised to link with his countryman Mourinho as coach.
Liverpool made the perfect start to their Premier League campaign by beating Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium by 4-3.
This will boost their confidence ahead of a Premier League season that sees them start as one of the outsiders to win the trophy. This will be the first season in charge for Jurgen Klopp, and he will be hoping that the can get Liverpool at least back in the Champions League places.
Things did not start well for Liverpool though as they conceded a goal to Arsenal. In fairness, Arsenal was the better team in the first half where they control the game better. They restricted Liverpool to only one shot on target, and they kept possession well. The Gunners obtained a penalty in the first half when Moreno committed a foul on England international Theo Walcott. However, the latter will be denied by Simon Mignolet.
However, Arsenal will keep pushing and will be rewarded with a goal. This time, Theo Walcott did not miss the target after some good work by Alex Iwobi. However, Liverpool will manage to come back into the game on a free-kick. Coutinho will score a brilliant goal that did not give Petr Cech any chance. The goal will allow Liverpool to get to half-time with the score level.
The head coach of Leicester City Claudio Ranieri says the primary target of the club this season is again to avoid being relegated from top flight football.
In the last campaign they defied the odds to lift the Premier League title and even have worse stats at retaining the title this forthcoming season. The odds last season was 5000-1 but its 6000-1 now and the coach says that’s not his concern.
“The fundamental concept is to start from scratch. We’ve won the title and it was beautiful and fantastic, it was maybe an unrepeatable achievement but now we turn the page.
“If at start of last season the bookmakers had us down 5000-1 shots, then this time we start at 6000-1. Our objective to start the season with is to reach 40 points and stay up,” the Italian tactician said. Read more
Seemingly not content with having already secured the signings of Ilkay Gundogan and Nolito for his new Manchester City side, Pep Guardiola is now leading the chase for a further three transfers, as he looks to inject some youthful exuberance into the club.
Leroy Sane, Gabriel Jesus and Marlos Moreno are all understood to be closing in on moves to The Etihad, with the youngsters clearly attracted by the opportunity of working for a manager of Guardiola’s calibre. Read more
Now the dust has settled on the European Championships, the summer transfer window looks set to explode into action. With this in mind, here are five top talents that could be winging their way to the Premier League in the coming weeks.
Paul Pogba – Juventus
The worst kept secret in world football surrounds the departure of Paul Pogba from Juventus this summer – but where will he end up? Read more
Mezut Ozil and team mate Julian Draxler are already looking ahead after their 2-0 defeat of Ukraine.
The victory wasn’t quite convincing as Ukraine put up a strong fight but the German experience gave them the edge. Both players already set their sights on the game against Poland.
On popular social media app, Instagram, the Arsenal play maker posted a selfie alongside his national team-mate with the caption “on our way to the training… Next challenge against Poland is already waiting for us on Thursday!”
The German team are already eager to seal qualification for the next stage. Ozil believes his team mate Bastian Schweinsteiger,31, found some form in their tournament opener, despite his poor run at Manchester United in the last campaign and the recurrent injuries. In the game against Ukraine in Lille, Schweinsteiger scored the second with the assist from Ozil who sent the cross. He scored the second for the Germans after Shkodran Mustafi scored the first.
The manager of newly crowned winners of the English Premier League, Leicester City, Claudio Ranieri was given the award of Barclays Premier League Manager of the Year and League Managers’ Association Manager of the Year awards on Monday.
The Italy International received the recognition for his incredible work with The Foxes
this past season as the team shared the news via Twitter.
Expected to battle relegation for much of the season, Leicester stormed out of the gate and challenged for the Premier League title all season, eventually beating out Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur for the first top-tier championship in their history. Ranieri’s appointment last summer was initially met with skepticism, as the Italian had been sacked from his previous job with Greece and had found limited success since his stint with Chelsea.
Ranieri’s humble, laid-back approach was exactly what Leicester needed. The 64-year-old soaked up the headlines and the media attention throughout the campaign, keeping the pressure off his players. Tactically, Ranieri opted against tinkering with his team too much and used the 4-4-2 for most of the campaign, relying on his squad’s defensive prowess and raw pace. The likes of Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez proved perfect fits for such an approach. Read more
Stoke City defender Marc Wilson says that he is “gutted” after being ruled out of Euro 2016.
The Antrim native had been striving to prove his fitness for the tournament in France, which starts next month. The Aghagallon bred player, who can also play in midfield, is now set to miss the tournament. Read more