Jan 312013

Chelsea target Willian had been firmly expected to move to mega-rich Russian outfit Anzhi Makhachkala, but that failed to materialise today.

Chelsea and Spurs have long been admirers of the Brazilian playmaker, who has been outstanding for Shakhtar Donetsk for some time now. He scored 3 goals against the Blues this season in his 2 Champions League games, and played an integral part in Chelsea’s expulsion from the competition they won only last season.

Spurs are keen to add some creativity to their midfield, having sold the likes of Rafael Van Der Vaart and Luka Modric last summer. They had failed to sign Joao Moutinho on deadline day over the summer, and were expected to add to their midfield options this month.

The Brazilian admitted to being in contact with Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas, and declared once more of his wishes to leave the Ukrainian club.

Willian said: “Everyone inside Shakhtar knows I am keen to leave.”

On Tottenham Hotspur boss AVB, he added: “Villas-Boas is a good guy, we speak on the phone and are constantly in touch.”

The 25 year-old is keen to leave Ukraine, adding: “I do not intend to be here any longer after the next window.

“On the other hand, nowadays things are much different from when I arrived. Shakhtar get more attention, we are in the Champions League.

Shakhtar know the situation and are already planning for life without their star player, having recently signed a ready made replacement in the form of Taison Freda.

“It is no secret that he has arrived to take my position when I leave,” Willian said. “Everybody knows this.”

Willian is no doubt an outstanding player who possesses a great amount of flair, and is a player who can change a game in the way that Juan Mata can. Mata has almost single-handedly won some of Chelsea’s games this season, and we need more match-winning players in his mould.

Jan 152013

Chelsea target Willian has fallen out with current club Shakhtar Donetsk, after failing to return from the clubs winter break on time.

Willian was still in Brazil while the rest of his team-mates completed their first training session since Christmas.

His manager Mircea Lucescu said: “It is not very nice to say that Willian did not return from holiday on time and thus he is exerting a certain pressure on the club. I think it was unprofessional of him.

“The president decided to do everything possible to sign a player of Willian’s level, who already has experience of playing at a high standard. We look forward to having Willian again and I would like him to come back and behave as he did before – as a professional and decent man.

“I would like him to solve his problems in a civilised manner here in Donetsk, and not by phone. I have great respect for Willian and I would not like him to be put under pressure by the people who surround him, and who perhaps advise him the wrong things.

“He should reject the advice of those who surround him, they are not doing very good things. With or without Willian, Shakhtar will move on.”

The 24 year-old is said to be actively seeking a move away from the club, and has spoken out about his love for the Premier League.

Spurs along with Chelsea have been rebuffed in their attempts to sign the forward in the past year, with both clubs continuing to be linked with the forward.

The Brazilian has been a key member of the Shakhtar first team, playing a huge part in Chelsea’s elimination from this season’s Champions League group stages. He scored 3 goals in the two games against the Blues, further enhancing his reputation as a world class playmaker.

I hope Chelsea can firm up their interest in the player, who would jump at the chance to play for our illustrious club. He can play anywhere in midfield as well as be used as a back-up striker. £22Million is a very reasonable price for such a talent. Will we turn another Brazilian Blue?

Dec 212012

Shakhtar Donetsk forward Willian has admitted he wanted to jump at the chance to sign for Chelsea when their offer came in, and still hopes to move to a bigger team in the near future.

The versatile attacking midfielder attracted plenty of attention over the summer, with Tottenham and Chelsea very keen on the player.

Chelsea had a bid rejected by the Ukrainian side, and Willian expressed his desire to move away from the club.

The Brazilian said: “My goal is to play for a bigger club in a high level league.

“If I tell you that I was happy, I would be lying. My desire was there, with a 25million euros (£20.3m) offer from a big club like Chelsea. I wanted to pack my things and go, but I can’t do that as I am under contract.

“It shows how much Shakhtar like me and shows that I am doing a good job, which is why they wanted me to stay.

“I have tried to convince them many times to let me go. I know that Juventus and Chelsea have made offers to buy me and that motivates me a lot.

“The club know that I want to leave, everyone knows that. The president has told me that he’ll let me go for 30million euros and my intention is to sign for a big club.

Chelsea are currently in the hunt for valuable attacking options to add to the squad in January and may reignite their interest in the midfielder/striker. Willian played a part in Chelsea’s demise in the Champions League, scoring in both group fixtures against the West London club.

He has been in great form for Shakhtar, and is available for a very reasonable £24.5million. If Chelsea were to fail in their bid for Fellaini, I believe Willian would be a more than gracious replacement. The Brazilian forward could add some experience to our squad, which could prove invaluable with the expected loss of Ashley Cole and Frank Lampard in the summer. Who would you prefer? Willian or Fellaini?

Dec 042012

Andrea Pirlo is determined to kill off Chelsea’s hopes of being the first team to successfully defend the Champions League on Wednesday night.

A win or a draw for Juventus against Shakhtar Donetsk will send holders Chelsea out of the competition.

The Blues’ only hope is a Shakhtar win in Ukraine coupled with a Stamford Bridge victory over Group E whipping boys Nordsjaelland.

Juve playmaker Pirlo, said: ‘I’m sorry for Chelsea fans but the next thing they know they will be saying goodbye to the Champions League.

‘If they go out it won’t only be because of what happens tomorrow.

‘We have been superior to Chelsea and beating them 3-0 was a key moment.’

Pirlo has also ruled out any dirty tricks to send Chelsea packing.

He added: ‘If anyone believes that Juve and Shakhtar have agreed to tie then they are mistaken.

‘The difference between finishing first or second is great in terms of the knockout draw. So our motivation to beat Donetsk couldn’t be greater.’

It has been a fear that Juve would attempt to play out a stale-mate, and if no goals come in the first hour, then the teams are almost guaranteed to sit back. Chelsea have to concentrate on getting a win regardless, and that is no easy task considering the current battle with form we have been having. Chelsea need to get their heads out of the ground and come up fighting. Do we still expect Juve to play out a draw?

Nov 282012

Chelsea’s hopes of qualifying past the group stages took a huge blow last night as Luiz Adriano received a suspension for the final group game against Juventus, with Chelsea needing Shakhtar to claim a win.

The striker was suspended for unsporting behaviour, after chasing down a ball and rounding the keeper when the dropped ball was to be given back to the keeper because the referee stopped play for an injury.

The striker went on to score a hat-trick in the 5-2 win over FC Nordsjaelland, but the team we’re currently 1-0 down in the game when the incident happened and may have changed the game.

For Chelsea to qualify for the next round of the Champions League, they will need to win their final group game at home, along with Shakhtar to beat Juventus in Ukraine.

Adriano’s ban is just for the one game and will return for the knockout rounds.

UEFA also ordered the striker to do ‘one full day of community football service’.

The striker has played in each group game so far, and will be a big miss for Shakhtar, but with Shakhtar’s goals coming from a wide selection of players, I still feel as though they will beat Juventus in Ukraine. We just have to beat the Danes at Stamford Bridge.