Friday, July 15, 2016

Claudio Ranieri: N'Golo Kante's Future Is 'In His Own Hands'

3:45 AM Posted by Moto Musashi , No comments
After a tremendous season with Leicester City and a run to the Euro final with France, N'Golo Kante has been the subject of a lot of transfer speculation. While Leicester certainly hope to retain the star midfielder, it will be difficult as he is being targeted by many big clubs.

Kante was offered a new contract, but it remains to be seen if he will follow Jamie Vardy by snubbing bigger clubs to stay at Leicester. Manager Claudio Ranieri told ​BBC, "We offered Kante a new deal before the Euros. Now I know there are a lot of big teams interested." 

Chelsea aew known to be targeting a high-profile defensive midfielder this summer, and ​reportedly offered £27m to Leicester for Kante. 
Ranieri said that after offering him a new contract, there was nothing more Leicester could do and at this point, Kante has his "future in his hands".

Euro 2016 Hero Eder Reveals Shocking Truth About Family After Firing Portugal to Glory

3:20 AM Posted by Moto Musashi , , No comments
ortugal's Euro 2016 hero Eder has revealed the horrific truth surrounding his family after Sunday's showpiece final in Paris.

Eder came on as a substitute to score a stunning extra time winner as Portugal overcame hosts France to win their first major tournament.

​Quoted in the Express, the Swansea City striker revealed in a television interview following the final that his father is in prison for the murder of his step-mother.

The goalscoring hero confirmed that his father is now nearing the end of a 16-year sentence after he was adjudged to have been found guilty of murder.

"My dad is in prison. Since I was 12. My step-mum died and he was accused of killing her.

"He was sentenced to 16 years, I think."

Having scored the winner on the biggest stage, Eder was reflective of the incredible journey he has been on.

"From the moment I went to Academica and began to earn money, I could go to England to see him in jail."

Eder became an Academica player at the age of 11, having moved from his native country of Guinea-Bissau in West Africa when he was a toddler.

Whilst many modern young footballers are interested in the latest car, Eder's situation ensured he remained focused on more important things.

The striker has revealed that he would use his wages in order to fund a holiday to see his father in prison.

"Every time I had holiday, I would go to England to see him."

Following Eder's goalscoring exploit on Sunday evening, it is unlikely the striker will have to save up for long in the future.

Juventus Reportedly Launch Enormous Bid for Napoli Striker Gonzalo Higuain

3:15 AM Posted by Moto Musashi , No comments
After an outstanding campaign in the 2015-16 season, Gonzalo Higuain duly established himself as one of the hottest properties in European football - and now Juventus look to be leading the race for the Argentinian striker's signature. 

According to ​Gianluca Di Marzio and ​Fabrizio Romano - both reputable Italian journalists with impressive transfer track records - claim Juventus have moved to secure the services of the 28-year-old, who scored 38 times in 42 appearances for Napoli last season. 

Sky Sport Italy journalist Romano claims Juventus and Napoli have reached an agreement which will see the striker sign a four-year contract. Juventus are reportedly willing to meet the £79m buy-out clause in Higuain's current deal if a fee cannot be agreed. 

According to Football Italia, part of the fee will be covered by Juventus playmaker Roberto Pereyra moving in the opposite direction. Pererya is valued by the Serie A champions at £15m. 

Indeed, the rumour has been picked up by the UK's own transfer market guru, Sky Sports' Kaveh Solhekol, who says Higuain is willing to join Juventus if the clubs can agree a deal. Considering the enormity of the deal, there is still a long way to go before the striker is confirmed as a Juventus player. 

Earlier this week, long-term Higuain admirers Arsenal were said to be weighing up a move that would have involved Olivier Giroud moving to the Stadio San Paolo as a makeweight, but it looks as though Arsene Wenger will miss out on one of his top targets to the Italian giants. 

Higuain's profligacy have helped Napoli to the Coppa Italia in 2014, while the Argentine won three La Liga titles during his seven-year stint at Real Madrid.

Premier League Transfer Rumours: Memphis, Kompany, Higuain and.....

3:10 AM Posted by Moto Musashi No comments
Here it is! The latest round up of Premier League transfer rumours for this week, and you can bet your bottom dollar there's some corkers in Thursday's edition.

Have a gander, then...

12. Olympiakos Challenge Everton, Leicester and Hull in Robson-Kanu Chase.

Wales Training Session and Press Conference
The likes of Leicester, Hull City and Everton face further competition in the race to sign free agent Hal Robson-Kanu this summer, as Greek champions Olympiakos are ready to offer a contract.
Welsh international Robson-Kanu came to Europe’s attention at Euro 2016, and is free to choose his next destination after leaving Reading at the end of last season. He’s been offered a reported £100,000-a-week by clubs in the Chinese Super League, but the Greek outfit are now considering an offer for him.
Everton are looking to add to their ranks up front, but are closing in on a deal for midfielder Axel Witsel.

11. Agent Confirms Sunderland Star’s Move to Napoli Is Imminent.

Germany v Italy - Quarter Final: UEFA Euro 2016
Emanuele Giaccherini is imminently set to sign for Napoli, according to his agent.
The Sunderland midfielder has been out of favour for most of his stay at the Stadium of Light, though he starred for Italy at Euro 2016. And agent Furio Valcareggi confirmed that a deal was agreed to take the player back to his homeland, with the Naples side.
He told Radio CRC: “Emanuele is very happy to join Napoli, a great team that will be playing to win. He’s finally getting what he deserves, after being underestimated for years.
“He’ll put in triple the effort to match what he showed at Euro 2016. Giaccherini runs 13km per game and plays wonderfully. He’s a box-to-box midfielder who can also play on the wing and who reaches the goal seven-eight times per game.
“He already spoke with [Napoli coach Maurizio] Sarri.”

10. Bournemouth Prepare £15m Double Swoop for QPR Defenders.

Liverpool U21 v Tottenham Hotspur U21: Barclays U21 Premier League
Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe is ready to keep on spending the big bucks ahead of the new Premier League season, amid reports he’s lining up a £15m double bid for QPR defenders Steven Caulker and Nedum Onuoha.
Howe is set to complete a deal for Jordon Ibe imminently for a similar fee, while he’s added the likes of Lewis Cook and Lys Mousset for big money too.
The Star however claim he’s ready to splash more cash in order to find suitable replacements for Tommy Elphick and Sylvain Distin – who’ve each left the club this summer.

9. Palace Switch Attention to West Brom Forward After Missing Out on Benteke.

West Bromwich Albion v West Ham United - Premier League
Crystal Palace have switched their attention to West Brom striker Saido Berahino after missing out on a deal for Liverpool’s Christian Benteke, according to South London Press.
Benteke has opted to stay at Anfield and fight for his place despite being subject to a big-money offer from the Eagles, with the differences in valuation between the two clubs being a little too wide to overcome. Instead, wantaway Berahino has become a main target.
He’s been linked with a host of clubs this summer, but Palace are ready to put up an offer to finally secure his exit from the Hawthorns.

8. West Ham Boosted as Strike Target Considers Napoli Future.

Napoli forward Manolo Gabbiadini has provided West Ham with a huge boost, as he reportedly considers a summer move away from the club to pursue first team football.
Italian outlet Tutto Mercato claim both West Ham and Stoke are looking to sign the Italian, and that he’s ready to look at potential moves elsewhere after taking advice from his sister.
While Gabbiadini may be ready to leave, Napoli are however expected to be tough negotiators over his fee.

7. Leicester Prepare Final Offer of £15m for Burnley’s Michael Keane.

Burnley v Brentford - Sky Bet Championship
Premier League champions Leicester City are plotting a final bid worth £15m to land central defender Michael Keane from Burnley, according to the Telegraph.
The Clarets have already turned down bids of £10m and £12m for the former Manchester United youth, but Leicester are ready to return with another improved offer. Burnley are holding out for closer to £20m, but may buckle at the next offer should it come in.

6. Borussia Dortmund Linked With Move for Stoke Star Shaqiri.

Switzerland v Poland - Round of 16: UEFA Euro 2016
Stoke City attacker Xherdan Shaqiri is attracting interest from Thomas Tuchel’s Borussia Dortmund, according to a report from the Stoke Sentinel.
Shaqiri only joined Stoke last summer from Inter Milan, and played well in fits and starts for the Potters in his debut campaign. However, fear not Stoke fans, as separate reports claim BVB are very close to signing Wolfsburg’s Andre Schurrle and Bayern’s Mario Gotze – the latter from under the noses of Tottenham and Liverpool.
The arrival of both players would really limit the need for Dortmund to land Shaqiri, one would think.
In other Stoke news, they’re interested in bringing in Mario Lemina from Juventus.

5. Chelsea Remain in Pursuit of Bologna Wonderkid Amadou Diawara.

Chelsea’s pursuit of Bologna midfielder Amadou Diawara has yet to come to an end, with Antonio Conte’s side still looking to secure a deal.
Tuttosport claim the Blues are prepared to pay £18m for the teenager – a fee which is likely to tempt Bologna into selling – while it will also blow fellow interested party Roma out of the running to sign him.

4. Inter Ready to Sell Liverpool and Spurs Target If Witsel Comes in as Replacement.

Inter Milan will allow Tottenham, Liverpool and Arsenal target Marcelo Brozovic to leave the club if they’re able to complete a deal to sign Axel Witsel.
Everton are closing in on the Belgian, as mentioned earlier, but Inter are well in the hunt for the Belgian too, and according to Gazzetta World, the Croatian will be allowed to leave for £21m if Witsel comes in.
However, a separate report from Corriere dello Sport claims that Inter will use Brozovic as bait to lure Erik Lamela back to Serie A.
The Nerazzurri have been chasing the Argentinian for several months, and will look to complete some kind of swap deal with Spurs involving the Croatian to get the deal done. Messy, eh?

3. Juventus Emerge as Arsenal’s Main Rivals in Higuain Chase.

Gonzalo Higuain’s future is turning into one of the stories of the summer, with Arsenal, Liverpool and Chelsea each credited with interest in the Argentinian.
Atletico Madrid are also monitoring the Napoli star’s future, but Italian champions Juventus are the latest team to throw their name into the hat. Club owners – the investment company Exor – have given the go ahead for the club to try and sign him, and they could lodge a bid worth £79m to their domestic rivals. claim Juve are ready to meet the release clause in Higuain’s contract, meaning Arsenal may have some trouble in securing one of their primary targets.
Juve are also battling with Chelsea to sign Brazilian sensation Gabriel Barbosa.

2. Manchester City Skipper Targeted by Turkish Champions Besiktas.

Turkish champions Besiktas are boldly pursuing a potential deal to sign Manchester City club captain Vincent Kompany, according to Fanatik.
Kompany has struggled with injury problems over the last several months, and speculation is abound over whether he will be retained in the City squad by new boss Pep Guardiola.
Besiktas president Fikret Orman is said to be monitoring the situation and meetings are even reported to have taken place at board level. The Champions League side believe they can sign Kompany for £25m, but will have to contend with his £130,000-a-week wage demands too.
City are pursuing John Stones – who could potentially become Kompany’s long-term replacement – but they’ll have to pay Everton more than £50m to get him.

1. Barcelona Line Up Shock Move for Manchester United Winger.

England v Netherlands - International Friendly
Barcelona have been linked with a sensational and somewhat bizarre move to lure Memphis Depay from Jose Mourinho’s clutches at Manchester United.
Don Balon (yep, them again) claim that the Dutchman is being lined up by the Spanish champions as a potential arrival to supplement their current squad. Samuel Umtiti and Lucas Digne have arrived from French football this week to beef up the Catalans’ defence, and Memphis is next on the agenda according to the report.
United are said to be looking to recoup most of what they paid PSV Eindhoven for the player last summer.
On the incomings front at Old Trafford though, Paul Pogba’s finally had something to say on the speculation…

Friday, June 17, 2016

Germany Held to 0-0 Draw Against Poland as Northern Ireland Secure 2-0 Win

4:19 AM Posted by Moto Musashi No comments
World Champions Germany were left frustrated as they were held to a 0-0 draw by Poland in Saint-Denis. The match was the first goalless draw of the tournament, and still leaves group C wide open.
Both sides had opportunities to win the game, but neither were prolific enough in front of goal.
​Both teams went into the game on the back of impressive victories, with Poland beating Northern Ireland, and the Germans easing past Ukraine.
Joachim Low made just one change to his side from the opening game, with new Bayern Munich defender Mats Hummels coming in for Shkodran Mustafi. Poland made two changes, with Lukas Fabianski and Kamil Grosicki, starting ahead of Wojciech Szczesny and Bartosz Kapustka.

Germany started the better of the two teams, dominating possession in the opening minutes, however their first real attempt on goal came when Thomas Muller retrieved the ball and skillfully made his way into the box, to lay off a pass to Toni Kroos who shot wide.
That was the best chance in a rather flat first half.
The second half started much better than the first, and Poland could have taken the lead within the first minute. A cross into the box from Kamil Grosicki was set on a plate for Arkadiusz Milik, who failed to get any sort of connection on the ball.
Germany replied instantly with a counter attack that left Mario Gotze free to get a shot off that stung the palms of Lukas Fabianski.

Milik once again had an opportunity to put Poland ahead in the game, when a ball into the box fell to him. However the forward failed to connect with the ball once again.
Germany applied more pressure on the Polish defence in the final minutes of the game, but could not find a way through, leaving Poland the happier of the two sides at the final whistle.
Earlier in the day, Northern Ireland made history by securing their first win in the European Championships, beating Ukraine 2-0.

Michael O'Neill's side took the lead early in the second half, when a free-kick expertly delivered by Oliver Norwood was met by Gareth McAuley, who nodded the ball into the net to send the Irish fans into raptures.
Play had to be stopped briefly because of worsening weather conditions, but nothing could dampen the spirits of the Northern Ireland fans who were having the time of their lives.
Ukraine continued to pressure the Irish defence, knowing that defeat would almost certainly see them eliminated from the competition. But victory was assured in the final minute of injury time when Aberdeen forward Niall McGinn pounced on a rebounded shot, to secure a famous win.

4:11 AM Posted by Moto Musashi No comments

England got their Euro 2016 dream back on track after a dramatic 2-1 win over Wales in Lens in a game that had been dubbed the Battle of Britain.
Gareth Bale had given the Welsh an early lead, but a second half equaliser and a stoppage time winner from substitutes Jamie Vardy and Daniel Sturridge turned the game on its head.
England had dominated the first half, but just as had been the case against Russia, couldn’t make their chances count and were left paying for it at the break.
Raheem Sterling kept his place in the team, despite calls for the winger to be dropped, although he was soon under scrutiny again after he sent a glorious chance in the opening few minutes over the crossbar when the goal was gaping.
England were awarded a number of free-kicks as the first half wore on, one of which saw Gary Cahill’s flicked header gratefully grasped by Wayne Hennessey. A header from Chris Smalling later flew agonisingly wide from a corner, while the team in white shouted for a penalty when the ball struck the arm of Ben Davies inside the six-yard box.
When Wales broke the deadlock it was a rare chance as Bale made Joe Hart pay for a bad mistake. The England goalkeeper got two hands to the low free-kick but only managed to push the ball into the goal to send the Welsh end of the stadium into meltdown.
Roy Hodgson threw caution to the wind at half-time, putting both Sturridge and Vardy into the mix. It sparked a reaction in the Three Lions ranks and the pressure on the Wales back-line was immediately ramped up.

After Wayne Rooney soon forced Hennessey into a save, England were back level from the resultant corner. Vardy lived up to his reputation and was on hand to turn the ball home inside the six-yard box after it came off the head of Ashley Williams.
It then promptly became a backs to the wall job for Wales, who struggled to even get out of their own penalty area for a time.
Marcus Rashford set a new record as England’s youngest ever player at the European Championships when he replaced Adam Lallana for the final 20 minutes and gave his team yet another attacking threat.
As the clock ticked over 90 and into stoppage time it looked like it wasn’t going to happen for England. Wales had defended resolutely but one tiny gap was all that Sturridge needed to squeeze the ball through and past Hennessey to win it.
England: Hart, Walker, Smalling, Cahill, Rose, Dier, Lallana (Rashford – 73′), Rooney, Alli, Sterling (Sturridge – 45′), Kane (Vardy – 45′)
Wales: Hennessey, Gunter, Chester, Williams, Davies, Taylor, Allen, Ledley (Edwards – 67′), Ramsey, Bale, Robson-Kanu (J.Williams – 72′)

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Friday, June 10, 2016

Premier League Dominates List of Most Expensive Players at Euro 2016

4:06 AM Posted by Moto Musashi , , , , No comments
Manchester City's financial dominance in European football has been well-documented for the best part of a decade. This trend is reinforced by the fact that the most expensive players out of the German, French and Belgian national teams are Manchester City stars.
The Premier League as a whole also boasts its own dominance, with 133 players at Euro 2016 set to come from English clubs, at a net value of £953m.

Manchester City v A.F.C. Bournemouth - Premier League
This figure is only staggering when you compare it to Spanish or German football, with the former sending 35 players worth £430m to the tournament, while the latter are sending 64 players with a value of £272m. 
The list, compiled by ​sportingintelligence, has some positive figures for Arsenal supporters, as they, joined with Real Madrid and Manchester City, also have the most expensive players from three countries, with Mesut Ozil being the most expensive German, new-signing Granit Xhaka being the most valuable Swiss player and veteran goalkeeper Petr Cech leading the way for the Czech Republic.
In spite of France's favourite status and their wealth of talented players, the most expensive of those is actually Manchester City's Eliaquim Mangala, who signed for City for a whopping £42 million in 2014.

Premier League Transfer Rumours: Kroos, Vardy, Honda, Mane and More

3:58 AM Posted by Moto Musashi , , , , No comments
Who is allegedly ready to offer more than £31m to Real Madrid for Toni Kroos? Jamie Vardy is 80% sure of his future, but will it be Leicester or Arsenal? Which pair of Premier League clubs could enter a bidding for Milan's Keisuke Honda? And what is the latest update on the future of Sadio Mane at Southampton?

Learn the answers to these questions and more in today's roundup of Premier League transfer rumours.

10. West Brom Confident of Landing QPR Winger

Leicester City v Queens Park Rangers - Premier League
​After failing in a bid last summer because QPR wanted £10m, West Brom could finally be about to seal a deal for QPR's Scottish international winger Matt Phillips.

According to the ​Birmingham Mail, Baggies boss Tony Pulis is increasingly confident of reaching an agreement. Phillips has just one more year left on his current contract and it makes sense for QPR to cash in while they still can.

9. Sunderland to Make Fresh Ayew Approach

Swansea City v Liverpool - Premier League
​Sunderland could yet make a fresh approach for Swansea forward Andre Ayew this summer, according to the Sunderland Echo, who note that the Ghanaian international still remains a target for the Black Cats.

Ayew has spoken about a move away from the Liberty Stadium in the past, despite only arriving from Marseille last summer, and if Swansea feel they have no choice but to sell they could potentially demand a fee of £15m.

8. Saints Ready to Ward Off Interest in Stars

Southampton v Crystal Palace - Premier League
​Southampton may well be powerless to stop Victor Wanyama leaving this summer, while reports have indicated that Graziano Pelle is in talks with both Everton and Stoke. But the Saints are desperately trying to keep hold of other key players.

According to the Daily Mirror, the Saints are planning to offer new contracts to both Sadio Mane and Shane Long in a bid to keep the pair on the south coast for a while yet. It is said that Koeman's departure to Everton may even make Mane feel happier about staying after a deterioration in their relationship.

7. Everton Keeping an Eye on Nkoudou

​A report originating from RMC has revealed that are one of just three Premier League clubs who are keeping a close eye on promising Marseille winger Georges-Kevin Nkoudou - a potential asset that could be sold should the French club need to balance the books.

They will, however, face competition from West Ham and Merseyside neighbours Liverpool.

6. London Rivals on Alert After Honda Revelation

AC Milan v Juventus FC - TIM Cup Final
​Milan and Japan star Keisuke has revealed that he could be moving on after two and a half years at the San Siro, which the Daily Express believes has put both Tottenham and West Ham on alert ahead of a potential approach.

"I've been playing for AC Milan for two years. I'm not very satisfied with my performance, this is what I acknowledge about myself," the player admitted.

"Therefore I am not sure if my team will want to keep me and I am not sure about the future of my career, so right now I can't tell you about what will happen next. From now I will have two months for my rehabilitation and I have no matches right now so I have time to recover from my injuries."

5. Liverpool Will Have to Pay Full Whack for Porto Teen

​It's been a fortnight full of rumours linking Liverpool with Porto players. First it was Yacine Brahimi, then it was Hector Herrera, and now it's 19-year-old Ruben Neves.

According to Record in Portugal, Reds boss Jurgen Klopp is interested in the talented youngster, although it is said that only a monster offer of €40m will do.

Elsewhere, it has been claimed that Liverpool are in 'pole position' to land Lille play-maker Sofiane Boufal, while they are also allegedly keen on Cristian Tello - a player linked with a move to Anfield countless times in the past.

It has even been very optimistically claimed that the Reds are in the hunt for Paris Saint-Germain striker Edinson Cavani.

4. Chelsea Eye Nainggolan Alternative

Italy v Finland - International Friendly
​With Radja Nainggolan almost certain to stay at Roma this summer, Chelsea's hunt for a new central midfielder has led them to rising Juventus star Stefano Sturaro, according to a report bythe Sun.

The 23-year-old didn't join Juve until after Antonio Conte left, but the new Stamford Bridge boss does still know him well after including the player in his Italy squad for Euro 2016.

In other news, Chelsea may 'soon' be speaking to Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly as they look to strengthen a leaky defence that proved to be their downfall in 2015/16.

3. Vardy 80% Sure Where Future Lies

Leicester City v Everton - Premier League
​Leicester striker Jamie Vardy won't make a formal decision about his future until after Euro 2016 with an Arsenal contract waiting on the table. However, according to the London Evening Standard, the 29-year-old is 80% sure of where he'll be playing next season.

It's bad news for the Gunners. Apparently the 24-goal front-man has discussed the situation with a handful of international colleague and is leaning towards a Leicester stay.

The Gunners may not have to wait too much long for another signing, though, after reports that Bolton have accepted an offer for England Under-21 defender Rob Holding.

2. Man Utd to Bid for 'Dream Signing' Kroos

Germany v Hungary - International Friendly
​Toni Kroos could have been a Manchester United player before joining Real Madrid. The deal was reportedly agreed when David Moyes was still manager but Louis van Gaal pulled the plug.

Now, the Daily Express cites notorious Spanish gossip merchant Fichajes to claim that United have renewed their interest in the German World Cup winner and are even ready to make an opening bid in excess of £31m.

Apparently, Kroos is a 'dream signing' for new manager Jose Mourinho and he wants the Old Trafford board to make it happen. Of course, don't let the player's recent insistence that he's not interested in leaving the Bernabeu stop the rumours.

Unfortunately for United, it looks like they may have missed out on rumoured target Miralem Pjanic after reports that the Bosnian is set to leave Roma for Juventus.

1. Man City Have Better Chance With Messi Than Rivals

​Despite recent reports suggesting that Manchester United are testing the metaphorical waters ahead of a possible bid for Lionel Messi in the future, it appears that Manchester City still have a better chance of being to pull it off.

Sport Witness notes that a report from Marca states that City are still keeping an eye on the whole situation regarding Messi's future. It is mentioned that Etihad chief executive Ferran Soriano, once of Barcelona himself, remains close to the player and his father.

That being said, the five-time Ballon d'or winner has no desire to quit Camp Nou just yet.