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2013 » March » 28 - Archive

Champions League win my peak
drogba
Didier Drogba has described winning the Champions League in his final season with Chelsea as his greatest ever achievement.
The 35-year-old netted a late equaliser and the shootout-winning penalty against Bayern Munich in last year's final, as the west London club defied the odds to lift the trophy for the first time in their history.

And, ahead of participating in the quarter-finals with current club Galatasaray, Drogba has revealed that the events of May 19 2012 outstrip anything else he has experienced.

"I didn't expect to be back in the Champions League," he told UEFA Magazine. "But I have a s ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 328 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 23:55

Newcastle eyeing transfer targets
newcastle
Newcastle managing director Derek Llambias has promised the club will support Alan Pardew in the transfer market in the off-season.
Newcastle were in danger of being dragged into a relegation fight earlier this season, but have turned things around since the January arrivals of, among others, Moussa Sissoko and Mathieu Debuchy.

And, despite the significant investment seen earlier this year, Llambias has revealed that chief scout Graham Carr is already identifying new targets.

"There is still money available. There are several positions we are looking at," he told reporters.
Category: News Views: 340 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 23:48

Marchisio: Juve looking for vengeance
marchisio
Claudio Marchisio says Juventus will be gunning for revenge when they take on Inter Milan at San Siro on Saturday.
The Serie A leaders were beaten 3-1 in Turin earlier this season, and the Italy international has said his team are desperate to make amends.

"We are trying not to think too much about the Champions League. We have the league match against Inter coming up first, and we are all looking forward to that game," Marchisio told Tuttosport.

"Not just because we lost the home match versus them, but mainly because we want to maintain our lead over Napoli and AC Milan.
Category: News Views: 480 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 23:46

Rooney backs England to bounce back
rooneyEngland forward Wayne Rooney believes the side will learn from the mistakes made during Tuesday's 1-1 draw with Montenegro.
Roy Hodgson's men looked set to cruise to victory after the Manchester United forward handed them a sixth-minute lead in Podgorica, but the visitors were forced to hold on after conceding a late equaliser.

However, the 27-year-old believes the setback will stand England in good stead for the rest of their qualifying campaign - with three of their four remaining games at Wembley Stadium.

"We still have a great chance of qualification," Rooney told reporters. "It was a lesson f ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 405 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 19:21

Van Persie hails United front men
persie
Manchester United striker Robin van Persie has thanked his team-mates for chipping in with goals during his ongoing drought.
The Dutchman has failed to find the net in seven consecutive outings for the Red Devils, and has scored just one goal in 10 games despite having netted 11 times in as many appearances prior to that run. 

The 29-year-old admitted he is finding his barren spell tough, but said the goalscoring threats around him have taken the pressure off somewhat. 

"I'm going through a difficult period and haven't scored for seven games now," he told NUsport. 
Category: News Views: 436 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 19:19

Kuzmanovic confident ahead of Juve tussle
kuzmanovic
Inter Milan midfielder Zdravko Kuzmanovic says his team can beat anyone as they prepare to take on Juventus on Saturday.
Inter recorded a 3-1 win in the Derby d'Italia earlier this season, and the Serbia international is confident they can record another victory at San Siro on Saturday.

"We have to put in 100 percent against Juventus. We're Inter and we can beat anyone," Kuzmanovic told Sky Sport Italia.

"We proved that in Turin and we can do it again. What's the difference between them and us? They're top and we aren't. We're still off the pace in the table, they're doing better this year.&nb ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 350 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 19:12

Lacombe ´sorry´ for sexist jibe
lacombe
Former France international Bernard Lacombe has apologised for telling a female journalist that women should 'look after pots and pans'.
Before the World Cup qualifier between Spain and France on Tuesday, the RMC reporter asked Lacombe about Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema's form for the national side, to which the Lyon director replied with his sexist remark.

"I'm sorry if my statements have hurt women, and in particular to female athletes and footballers," Lacombe said in an official statement.

"My only intention was to reply to yet more criticism of Benzema. The way his qualities were questi ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 372 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 19:04

De Sciglio: Maldini was incredible
de sciglio
AC Milan youngster Mattia De Sciglio says he is flattered by comparisons with club great Paolo Maldini.
Maldini played his entire professional career at San Siro, notching up 902 appearances for the club.

De Sciglio, 20, has been one of the revelations of the season so far and developed into a key defender for Massimiliano Allegri's side, and he is keen to continue his progress in the years to come.

"The comparison with Maldini is very flattering. He did some incredible things and I just hope to achieve half of what he did," De Sciglio told RAI Sport.
Category: News Views: 425 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 19:01

Kompany´s Belgium duty irks Mancini
mancini
Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has slammed Belgium coach Marc Wilmots for playing Vincent Kompany for Belgium in midweek.
The defender has been sidelined since January through a calf injury and was due to return in City's clash with Newcastle on Saturday.

However, Kompany played the full 90 minutes of his country's 1-0 World Cup qualifying win over Macedonia on Tuesday, and his premature return has angered Mancini.

"I don't agree with this," the Italian told reporters. "International managers should understand the situation.

Category: News Views: 346 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 18:59

Hodgson has Ferdinand´s health at heart
hodgson
England manager Roy Hodgson says he must work closely with Manchester United in order to help Rio Ferdinand prolong his international career.
The centre-back pulled out of the Three Lions squad ahead of the World Cup qualifying double-header against San Marino and Montenegro citing the need to follow an intricate 'pre-planned fitness programme'.

And, though Hodgson refused to concede that the 34-year-old's presence was missed as his side drew 1-1 in Podgorica, he talked up the need to regularly consult the Red Devils over his fitness.

"First of all, I would say the two centre-backs did very well, ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 322 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 18:46

Premier League: Fulham - QPR
premier league
Queens Park Rangers can take a huge leap towards Premier League survival if they can somehow conjure a win against Fulham on Monday.
QPR are rock bottom and seven points adrift of safety but, with just eight more games left in the campaign, are fast running out of chances to avoid relegation to the Championship next season.

And given 19th-placed Reading, who are on the same amount of points as QPR (23) and are only ahead of them due to superior goal difference, are travelling to the Emirates to face European contenders Arsenal on Saturday, the door may be open for Harry Redknapp's men to lift themselves off the foot of the table.

A positive result could also see them gain ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 432 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 15:02

Premier League: Everton - Stoke City
premier league
Everton have renewed hope of fighting for a Champions League place, ahead of their hosting of Stoke City on Saturday.
David Moyes' men have won back-to-back league fixtures to stalk fourth-placed Tottenham by six points - and also have a game in hand on Andre Villas-Boas' men.

Arsenal sit in fifth, four points off Tottenham, but Everton will have all eyes on fourth spot - although there is another carrot of Europa League for the side that misses the top four.

They will however be missing key figures Steven Pienaar and Marouane Fellaini for the visit of Stoke - with both suspended.

Pienaar was red carded in their 2-0 victory ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 391 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 14:57

Premier League: Wigan - Norwich City
premier league
Wigan's bid to avoid relegation faces a crucial test on Saturday when Norwich City travel to the DW Stadium.
Wigan, who won seven of their last nine English Premier League fixtures last season to maintain their top-flight status, look to be finishing strongly again.

Wins against Reading and Newcastle United in recent league clashes have boosted their confidence while they have also reached the last four of the FA Cup after toppling Huddersfield Town and Everton.

Roberto Martinez's side are still in the relegation zone - they sit 18th - but have a game in hand on their rivals.

And a win against the 12th-p ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 417 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 14:53

Premier League: Swansea - Tottenham
premier league
Swansea entertain Tottenham at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday in what should prove to be a mouth-watering clash.
Spurs have stuttered of late and must quickly regain composure for the Premier League run-in, while Swansea can continue their impressive League Cup-winning season with the three points at White Hart Lane.

Tottenham sit precariously four points ahead of north London rivals Arsenal and will be well aware of late-season lapses that have seen them fall out of Champions League contention in recent seasons.

The Gunners have a game in hand and as well as the reward of Champions League football on offer, would dearly love to wrench it from their hapless neighbours' g ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 443 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 14:51

Premier League: West Ham - West Browich Albion
premier league
West Ham United can take a huge step towards Premier League safety with a home win against West Bromwich Albion on Saturday.
As league action resumes after a week of internationals, Sam Allardyce's side will take on the in-form West Brom at home.

West Ham sit six points above the relegation zone in 14th and have one game in hand on all bar one of the six teams below them on the table.

They could climb to 11th with victory at Upton Park, where they have been impressive this season.

In 14 home fixtures, West Ham have lost just three – to Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham - and a 3-1 win over Chelsea in Dece ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 378 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 14:46

Premier League : Manchester City - Newcastle
premier league
Manchester City cannot afford to put a foot wrong in the latter stages of the season if they have any hope of retaining the Premier League title.
Starting with Newcastle on Saturday, Roberto Mancini's men must embark on a faultless winning streak and hope Manchester United choke on their seemingly unassailable 15-point lead.

As unlikely as that may seem, Mancini will have his own personal ambitions at the forefront with the very real possibility he may not be at the Etihad next season.

City were woeful last time out in a 2-0 loss to Everton at Goodison Park and, realistically, will be eyeing a chance at silverware in the FA Cup final against either Chelsea or United, rath ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 388 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 14:43

Premier League: Sunderland - Manchester United
premier league
Manchester United travel to Sunderland on Saturday in a potential pitfall ahead of their FA Cup clash with Chelsea less than 48 hours later.
Relegation-threatened Sunderland can expect an experimental United side to take to the pitch, with the Red Devils' FA Cup semi-final replay with Chelsea scheduled for an early kickoff in London on Monday.

Yet, Sir Alex Ferguson will also be mindful of last season's catastrophic capitulation as they handed the title to Manchester City, even with a 15-point gap back to their neighbours this season.

The likes of Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie may be given the afternoon off following international double-headers, with United likely to ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 457 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 14:41

Premier League: Arsenal - Reading
premier league
New Reading manager Nigel Adkins will take charge of his first game when his side head to the Emirates to face Arsenal on Saturday.
Reading are deep in the mire, seven points from safety with eight Premier League games to play, but the former Southampton boss is confident he can get the job done.

Adkins assured fans the club would 'scrap' for the points they need to ensure Premier League survival.

"We've got to believe we can do it," Adkins said. 

"We will scrap. It's about the here and now. Do we dare to dream we can win the games we need to stay up? We have to." 
Category: News Views: 347 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 14:38

Premier League: Southampton - Chelsea
premier leagueChelsea head to Southampton on Saturday in a crunch game for both sides' respective Premier League ambitions.
The Blues sit third, a point clear of Tottenham in the race for the automatic Champions League berth, but will know only too well the threat Southampton pose at St Mary's, after they brushed aside Liverpool 3-1 in the last round of fixtures.

Automatic qualification will be on Chelsea's radar on Saturday; so too the small matter of their FA Cup semi-final with Manchester United on Monday.

That second-leg tie at Stamford Bridge will inevitably hinder Rafael Benitez's preparations given it falls less than 48 hours later.
Category: News Views: 341 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 14:35

Bramble talks up Welbeck
welbeck
Sunderland defender Titus Bramble has hailed the progress of former team-mate and Manchester United forward Danny Welbeck.
Despite the 22-year-old managing just one English Premier League goal all season, Bramble is well aware of the quality he is likely to face when he comes up against his former team-mate on Saturday. 

"It was plain to see for all the players here that Danny had so much ability," Bramble told The Sun.

"He was young, enthusiastic and that season with us did the world of good for him. He went back to United and now he's a regular for England and playing very well. ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 378 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 07:19

Monreal calls for Arsenal focus
monreal
Arsenal defender Nacho Monreal has issued a rallying cry to his team-mates in the race for the top four.
Arsene Wenger's men have lost just one of their past seven league matches, closing the gap on fourth-placed Tottenham, and also recorded a morale-boosting victory over Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena.

Arsenal sit just four points behind their rivals but have a game in hand, and Monreal is confident they have the quality to claim a Champions League berth.

"We still have matches left to fix the situation and to try to meet our objectives," the Spaniard told Arsenal Magazine ahead of their lea ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 369 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 07:03

Diaby wary of Reading threat
diaby
Arsenal midfielder Abou Diaby insists his side will not underestimate Reading at Emirates Stadium on Saturday.
Arsene Wenger's men are favourites for the clash as they face a Reading side that find themselves firmly in the relegation mire, sitting seven points adrift of safety. 

But despite winning the past two matches against their opponents, Diaby insists victory over a side threatened by the prospect of relegation will not be an easy task. 

"It is very difficult (against teams near the bottom of the table)," he told the club's website. 
Category: News Views: 295 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 06:45

Blue Square Premier: Gateshead - Newport
Betting Tip
blue square logoThe English Conference football match between Gateshead (19th) and Newport (4th) kicks off on 28 March 2013.
Gateshead has played 16 English Conference matches this season on Gateshead International. On home ground Gateshead has won 7, drawn 5 and lost 4 matches. This ranks Gateshead 9th in home team performance in the English Conference.

Newport has played 17 English Conference matches this season away from home. On away ground Newport has won 10, drawn 2 and lost 5 matches. This ranks Newport 2nd in away team performance in the English Conference. ... Read more »
Category: Betting Tips Views: 828 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 03:48

No PSG move for Toure
manchester city
Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure has ruled out a move to Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint-Germain.
The 29-year-old's representative, Dimitri Seluk, set a deadline of Saturday for City to agree a new deal with his client, while there have even been suggestions that Toure would buy out his contact at the end of the season. 

The former Barcelona midfielder is now reportedly preparing for showdown talks with City officials after returning from international duty.

But Toure has ruled out a move to PSG, dismissing rumours he had discussed a move away from the club, and reaffirmed his commit ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 388 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 02:28

Barcelona needed Vilanova return, admits Tello
vilanova
The forward has conceded the team has missed the influential coach but is delighted at the 44-year-old's return to Camp Nou following cancer treatment in New York
Cristian Tello says Barcelona "needed" Tito Vilanova back, with the Liga leaders' squad having been under the caretaker charge of assistant coach Jordi Roura for the last two months.

Barcelona travels to Celta Vigo on Saturday with Vilanova possibly making his return to the dugout for the first time since flying to New York on Jan. 22 for therapy to treat his throat cancer. 

The Catalans have a seemingly unassailable 13-point lead at the top of La Liga but crashed out of ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 369 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 02:25

Terim defends ´different´ Mourinho
Galatasaray coach Fatih Terim believes Jose Mourinho is misunderstood and says he values his friendship with the Real Madrid boss.
Mourinho has become embroiled in a dispute with FIFA in recent weeks over claims the award for Coach of the Year was flawed, with winner Vicente Del Bosque branding the Portuguese's suggestions as 'childish'.

Terim will face off with Mourinho in the Champions League quarter-finals next week, and the 59-year-old has defended his counterpart ahead of the clash.

"He has a different type of personality from most people and that means that sometimes, people don't understand him," Terim told Galatasaray TV.

"He is a great coach and he ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 353 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 02:21

Liverpool duo Carragher and Reina fit for Aston Villa clash
caragger
First team coach Mike Marsh added that all players have returned from international duty ready to play for Brendan Rodgers' side
Liverpool first team coach Mike Marsh has confirmed that Jamie Carragher and Pepe Reina will be back in contention to face Aston Villa on Sunday. 

Carragher missed out when Brendan Rodgers' squad traveled to Southampton earlier on this month, while Reina has been unavailable for selection for the last two games due to a calf complaint, but Marsh revealed both are now back in the fray.

"They're both available for selection, so it's a possibility," Marsh told the club's official website. 
< ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 321 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 02:15

Balotelli's time is now,says Prandelli
balotelli
The Azzurri coach believes that patience has paid off for the former Manchester City man, and revealed his desire to see an Italy-Argentina friendly to celebrate the new Pope
AC Milan striker Mario Balotelli is entering the prime of his career, according to Italy boss Cesare Prandelli.

The forward netted three times in two games in the international break, and has scored seven in his six appearances for the Rossoneri since arriving from Manchester City on January's transfer deadline day.

Prandelli believes the mercurial attacker is beginning to realize his undoubted potential after spending too long in the headlines for the wrong reaso ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 375 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 02:07

Neville willing to drop down divisions to extend career
neville
The former Manchester United midfielder has never played a league match outside the top flight, but would turn his back on the Premier League to keep playing.
Phil Neville has revealed he would consider dropping out of the Premier League if Everton does not extend his contract beyond the end of the season.

Neville has appeared over 500 times in England's top flight, but insists there would be nothing embarrassing about playing in the lower leagues, and he is adamant his top priority is to carry on playing football for as long as his body allows, regardless of the level of competition.

"For me I want to continue playing as long as possibl ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 298 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 02:02

Arnesen:Youth undermined at Chelsea
arnesen
The club's former chief scout believes the club's transfer policy prevents the development of young players within the club
 Former Chelsea chief scout and director of youth development Frank Arnesen has criticized the club's big-spending transfer policy for suffocating the club's young prospects. 

Arnesen, who left Stamford Bridge two years ago for Hamburg, spent over 73 million euros on bright young stars in his first four years at the club, but only Ryan Bertrand has been able to claim a regular role in the first team.

And while the culpability for Chelsea's shortcomings this season has usually been put on the shoulders of R ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 405 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 00:18

Ramos hits back at 'hurtful' Spain criticism
The Real Madrid defender claims the side's detractors would do well to remember la Roja's incredible successes in recent years.

Sergio Ramos has hit back at recent criticism of Spain's performances, insisting fans should take their achievements of recent years into account.

The world and European Champion has come under scrutiny from its own fans for a perceived lack of attacking intent following recent performances, and the Real Madrid defender has hit back at detractors, insisting the team's phenomenal success from 2008 onwards should not be forgotten.

"We respect the criticism, but it hurts that some of the fans criticize you after what you've done,” the defender told reporters.< ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 337 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 00:16

Van Persie:Manchester United could be my last club
persie
The Netherlands international hailed Old Trafford as the ideal environment for older players to flourish and insists the club’s ethos is getting the best out of him
Robin van Persie says that he may finish his career at Manchester United, insisting that it is a club where older players are valued.

The 29-year-old has been little short of a revelation since his 24 million-pound summer switch from Arsenal, netting 23 goals in 38 appearances to fire the Red Devils to the summit of the Premier League.

Despite a barren run that has seen the Netherlands international find the net just once in 10 games, Van Persie says that he is relishing life ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 371 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 00:14

Fink eyes Bayern scalp
fink
Hamburg head coach Thorsten Fink believes his side can take points off Bayern Munich in the Bundesliga on Saturday.
Fink knows his side are underdogs but hopes they can follow the example of Arsenal, who recently won at the Allianz Arena in the Champions League.

Hamburg – who sit eighth on the table – have nothing to lose according to Fink, who is hopeful his team can again win after an international break.

"After the last international break we won against Dortmund," Fink said.

"That is a good omen, also we showed against the top ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 332 Added: Sky Date: 28.03.2013 - 00:10

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