The pre-season for Stockport County is going impressively well for the team of Alan Lord as they have already managed on signing a few players to reinforce certain aspects of the squad as well as gaining a number of victories prior to the start of the upcoming campaign.
Stockport County initiated their pre-season campaign by picking up a 1-0 victory against Northwich Victoria with their new signing Chris Sharp being the player that scored the only goal of the entire match.
4 days later and Stockport County played locked horns with Nantwich with neither teams being able to score a single goal but the head coach of Stockport County admitted that it was a great result for his players and his team.
Lord said: “They got a bit fitter and I think we looked very solid; we don’t look like people can penetrate us and they tried going for the throat, they tried down the outside and they didn’t get anywhere. All round it was an exercise in getting players fitter, preparing for the next game, looking at strategies and systems and whether we need to change them or not.
The pre-season continued on for Alan Lord and his players by playing against the team of Stockport County of 1996-97. The current day squad of Alan Lord claimed a 6-0 victory against some of the best players of the team of some years ago.
With all of these positive victories, the head coach of Stockport County Alan Lord is optimistic about the next season and the squad has been reinforced further by signing Danny Hurst and Scott Spencer.
Spencer is a 25 year old forward who has experience playing in a number of different clubs which includes: Everton, Lincoln City and Rochdale while Danny Hurst has experience of his own after performing with Southport and Fleetwood Town.
Chelsea is expecting that they conclude signing the Spanish star of Athletic Madrid, Diego Costa with a price tag of €31.8 million which is the amount that his release clause states in his contract.
Diego Costa’s superb season has been one of the main forces behind Athletic Madrid’s title charge. The Spanish attacker scored 36 goals throughout the entire campaign which helped the club on becoming the champions of the Spanish League.
Jose Mourinho is desperate to sign a reliable attacker that can substantially increase Chelsea’s chances of not only winning the Premier League of the upcoming season but their Champions League campaign as well and it seems like he has his eyes targeted on Costa.
Chelsea struggled on scoring goals in this season as they only managed on scoring 71 goals which is a significantly low amount compared to Manchester City’s 102 and Liverpool’s 101.
Thibaut Courtois has helped Athletic Madrid on securing their League title and the Belgian shot-stopper is on the wish-list of many managers and clubs around the world. Barcelona already secured signing the successor of Victor Valdes with Marc Andre Ter-Stegen but they have made contact with staff members of Chelsea in relation to the availability of Courtois.
It will be however incredibly difficult for Barcelona to sign Courtois as the young shot-stopper is expected to make his return to Chelsea after the Champions League match against Real Madrid.
Athletic Madrid is hoping that they can sign a permanent deal for Courtois but Chelsea is reluctant on letting him leave Stamford Bridge as he can step it up and turn into the main goalkeeper of the Premier League club when Petr Cech decides to hang up his boots and retire.
Anzhi Makhachkala manager Gadzhi Gadzhiev has stated that the club are more likely to be relegated at the end of the season. This stunning admission comes in the wake of several financial problems at the club. After being funded by Russian billionaire Suleiman Kerimov for the last few years, the club splashed out heavily on players like Samuel Eto’o. Even more than the transfer fees, the wages paid to some of the players made them the best paid in the world. However, after running into problems in his personal and professional life, Kerimov has been faced with severe financial difficulties.
This has translated into Anzhi Makhachkala being pulled out of Kerimov’s purse. This has left the club stranded and they have had to sell star names like Willian for massive fees to clubs abroad. In the case of Willian, the Brazilian midfielder joined Chelsea for a fee believed to be worth around £ 30 million. After the sale of such important players, the club has been managing through with youth team players.
This has consequently resulted in a massive drop in form, as they have managed just one win in the last 22 matches. They are now bottom of the Russian league table and Gadzhiev says that they have only a 20% chance of being in the Russian top division next season. The club were in the lower leagues of Russian football before Kerimov arrived. He funded the club with several new players along with top class infrastructure to go along with it.
“Our chances of staying in the PL are 20 to 30 percent,” said the manager about their survival chances. Anzhi Makhachkala were knocked out of Europe after suffering a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Dutch outfit AZ Alkmaar earlier in the campaign. It looks highly unlikely that they will be in Europe in the near future.
Anzhi Makhachkala’s season suffered a huge blow and started going down since the moment when Samuel Eto’o and Willian were offloaded to Chelsea and the financial support from the billionaire owner Suleyman Kerimov appeared to have diminished compared to previous seasons.
The Russian club is currently located at the very bottom of the Russian Premier League having only secured 12 points so far and victory at this advanced stage of the league.
Gadzhi Gadzhiyev is the head coach of Anzhi Makhachkala and he has already stated his concerns about being relegated as he is almost certain that there is little which can be done at this point in time in order to avoid getting relegated.
“Our chances of staying in the PL are 20 to 30 percent,” Gadzhiev said in comments posted on Anzhi’s Twitter feed.
They are already are making plans of boosting their squad for the upcoming seasons with the Spanish forward of Swansea City, Michu on their watch-list. Michu has been suffering from a series of injuries that have kept him out of action for the majority of the season.
Even with his consistent number of setbacks that Michu is prone to be facing in recent times, the Russian club Anzhi Makhachkala is interested in securing his services when the transfer window opens in the summer.
Suleyman Kerimov and the rest of the staff members have already noticed the mistake it was to sell some of their biggest stars such as Eto’o and Lacina Traore which is why they will be attempting to bring back quality players to the team starting off with the Spanish forward of Swansea City.
Chelsea’s current campaign has been given a significant boost as they have sealed crucial victories against Manchester City and Manchester United, not only that but the recently closed transfer window saw them securing the services of Nemanja Matic and Mohamed Salah as well as seeing Juan Mata making his way out of the club and into Manchester United.
According to the Portuguese coach, he stated that Matic and Salah are the future of the club as they have the abilities and ambition to make an impact with the club.
“Matic has grown as a player during his time in Portugal and he has come back to this club as a fantastic all-round midfielder,” Mourinho told Chelsea magazine, the club’s official monthly title. As for Salah, he is a young, enthusiastic player with great pace and we have seen that he can score goals and create chances for his team-mates’’.
Chelsea’s victory against Manchester United was an important accomplishment not only for the club as they keep on piling the pressure against the other top teams of the Premier League but it’s a more significant and meaningful event for Mourinho as he became the fastest manager on securing 100 victories in the English League.
“My first thought after the Manchester United game was not for my 100 wins but that it was a good win for Chelsea, because that is what matters at the end,” Mourinho added.
“Of course I am pleased mainly because it means that Chelsea have picked up 300 points from those 100 games we have won together.”
Samuel Eto’o was awarded with the man of the match award during Chelsea’s match against Manchester United as the former Barcelona player scored all 3 goals that helped his team defeat the side of David Moyes.
With the winter transfer window just around the corner, Chelsea is a club that has been linked with a series of players that are rumored to be leaving the Premier League club meanwhile some others were linked to join the side of Jose Mourinho.
Ac.Milan’s Mario Balotelli is believed to be a target of Jose Mourinho but the agent of the former Inter Milan player said that no offers or talks have been made involving the player, besides it seems hard to believe that Ac.Milan are willing to let him go considering that he still has not even had 1 year since joining the Italian club.
Juan Mata has struggled under Jose Mourinho, the Spanish midfielder has failed to secure a regular spot in Chelsea. If Mata wants to ensure he gets playing time it would be ideal for him to make a switch to another club, Inter Milan is believed to be preparing a bid for Mata.
If Mata does decide however to remain in Chelsea, his chances of being featured in Spain for the 2014 World Cup will be up for grabs as Vicente del Bosque will only be looking at players that are fit and having plenty of playing time in their respective clubs and a team that has so many stars as Spain, it will be hard for Juan Mata to secure a spot in the starting lineup.
Michael Essien is another player that might be seeing his way out of Chelsea in this winter as his agent Fabien Piveteau has already confirmed.
“It’s true that he could leave Chelsea this winter.Several big European clubs playing in the Champions League have made enquiries and it should play out in the next 10 days or so.”
At this point it’s not a secret that Jose Mourinho wants to boost his attacking department as his own forward have been struggling to score goals in this season and Diego Costa is a big target for the Portuguese tactician however if Mourinho wants to sign Atletico Madrid’s star he will have to offload his backup goalkeeper Courtouis as the Spanish club is interested in signing him on a permanent deal.
Anzhi Makhachkala will play against the Norwegian club Tromso in a Europa League game this Thursday. This is going to be a do or die game for Tromso. Out of their first 3 games in the competition, they lost 2 and one was a draw.
They have just one point in their bag at the moment and they are right at the bottom of the Group K points table. If they lose again on Thursday, that will end their chances of advancing to the knockout stages.
Makhachkala, on the other hand, is not in such a bad position. The start of the competition was not great for them either as they had managed to secure just 1 point from their first couple of games, but, they bounced back and secured a 1-0 win in their last match against Tromso. However, after that game, they have played 2 matches in their domestic league and have lost both of them. So, they will not have that much confidence going into this game.
On top of that, Tromso’s record at home in Europa League is absolutely fantastic. Out of their last 19 Europa League matches at home, they have lost only 3.
Both the teams have some issues upfront. Both have scored just one goal in their first three matches and that’s not what you expect from top class sides.
It’s not easy to predict who is going to win this game. On the basis of Makhachkala’s performance in their last game against Tromso, one could have considered them the favourites, but, they have played some very poor football in their league games off late. So, now, one cannot completely back them to go on and win this game.
This match will be played at Alfheim Stadion and the starting time is 3 p.m. Eastern Standard Time.
Brazilian playmaker Willian believes he needs to quit spending Russian Premier League club Anzhi Makhachkala if he is to realize his dream of playing for one of the European giants before the end of his career.
The Brazilian, who was previously a target for Rafael Benitez and Chelsea before he was sold by Shakhtar Donetsk to the Russian powerhouses has admitted that he has immense admiration for the club but if given the opportunity, he would move on without a second thought.
He mentioned that he had tried to leave the Ukrainian giants for over a year. He admitted that he had several big offers from English clubs and many other European powerhouses but Shakhtar held firm and did not want him to go. He went on to add that Anzhi Makhachkala was the only club that agreed to pay the release clause his club was holding out for and he was happy to join them.
But he did add that although he has enormous affection for the club and its fans, everyone is aware of his real dream and desire and that hasn’t changed in the six months he has been in Russia. He added that his goal is to play for a big club in mainland Europe and be a part of the Brazilian national team in a FIFA World Cup but he is now an Anzhi player and he would play for the club with a calm mind for the time being.
He did add that sometimes, it was hard to deal with the situation at Shakhtar, despite being the backbone of their progress to the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League last season. He stated that he tries every way to negotiate an exit but they wouldn’t budge before Anzhi Makhachkala came forward with the massive bid.
Former Chelsea manager Guus Hiddink has resigned from his post as the manager of Russian club Anzhi Makhachkala after less than a year. He was brought into the club only in February 2012 after his spell with the Russian national team came to an end.
Hiddink is widely known for his spells with the national teams of South Korea and Holland. He guided a relatively lesser-known South Korea team to the semifinals of the World Cup, while the 66-year-old Dutchman has enjoyed great success with the likes of Chelsea and Real Madrid in club football.
His last spell in club football – with Chelsea – got him the 2009 FA Cup trophy. Hiddink has stated that he took over the Russian club with the mission of getting them to a higher position as much as he could. He has recalled that he would be not continuing as the manager once he thought that he would not take the club any higher. Anzhi Makhachkala have been looking to become one of the European elite. They have spent huge money on transfers and wages with the most notable being the £ 320,000 per week contract offer for former Inter Milan and Barcelona striker Samuel Eto’o.
Despite this, they have enjoyed only relative success in recent years.
“I’ve always said that my mission with Anzhi would end when the club was able to develop and grow by itself without my participation,” said Hiddink. “FC Anzhi has accepted the request of the head coach to terminate their employment relationship. The club sincerely thanks Guus Hiddink for his significant contribution to the club and wishes him success in his future career,” said the official statement from the club.
The 66-year-old Dutchman has been linked with the managerial job at Barcelona in the last few days following the resignation of Tito Vilanova.
Anzhi Makhachkala has signed the Brazilian midfielder Willian Borges da Silva. Anzhi has bought Willian from the Ukrainian club FC Shakhtar Donetsk. However, the Russian club hasn’t yet revealed the transfer fee that was paid to buy Willian, but, it is reported to be around 35 million Euros.
Willian played for Shakhtar for 5 and half years. He had joined Shakhtar in August 2007. The performance of Willian was quite good during his tenure at Shakhtar. The 24 years old attacking midfielder featured for Shakhtar in 140 matches and scored 20 goals.
Because of his consistent performances for Shakhtar, a lot of clubs were interested in signing Willian including the two English Clubs Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea.
When the winger of Anzhi, Yuri Zhirkov, was asked about Willian’s signing, he said, “Willian is a fantastic player and his performance in the last couple of years for Shakhtar has been quite outstanding. A lot of top teams wanted to buy him. So, it’s great that he has been bought by Anzhi and we are desperately waiting for him to join the camp.”
Willian himself was also quite happy after signing for his new club. The Brazilian midfielder said, “I am delighted to have joined a club like Anzhi which is slowly becoming one of the biggest clubs in the world. They really have a fantastic squad and it’s great to be a part of that unit. I hope that I would be able to win a lot of trophies with Anzhi.”
When asked about his tenure at Shakhtar, Willian said, “It was great. People gave me a lot of love and support and that’s why, I spent a lot of time over there. I want to thank them all for that. I also want to wish the Shakhtar team all the best for future.”