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Shark ENG (1)
Apr 302013
 

The Chelsea versus Gareth Bale (AKA Tottenham Hotspur) game is being touted as the key in the battle for a top-four finish.

The one-man-team show that is Tottenham Hotspur Football Club have endured a fine season, with their main man bagging 19 goals so far in this campaign, including 2 in his last two games against Manchester City and Wigan Athletic.

Spurs form is all over the place at the moment, with an emphatic 3-1 win over Manchester City sandwiched between a 2-2 draw with Wigan Athletic, and consecutive 2-2 draws with Everton in the Premiership and Swiss side Basle twice in the Europa League culminating in their demise on penalties.

The Blues have only dropped the one Premier League point this month thanks to a goal in ADDED added time, in the controversial clash with Liverpool 9 days ago, and are looking quite comfortable on the pitch of late. We look like a team to be feared again, and will most definitely win the game should we null the threat of newly crowned PFA player and PFA young player of the year winner Gareth Bale.

If Chelsea could manage a win at newly crowned Premier League Champions Manchester United on Sunday, then they will have all but cemented their place in the top four. If Chelsea were to win 3 of their remaining four fixtures they would finish either second or third in the league, but that is no easy task considering those four fixtures also include a difficult trip to Villa Park and a home clash with sixth placed Everton.

I am confident we can beat Tottenham regardless of Gareth’s form. I would not be surprised to see us win all four remaining fixtures starting with a win over rivals Manchester United on Sunday. They have no urgency for points, and I believe we will battle our way to a win. Come on you Blues!

Jan 162013
 

Current Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas has finally admitted that Chelsea had to sack him for a change in results.

AVB was sacked after only 8 months in charge, despite Roman Abramovich paying Porto €15Million to break his contract and getting the Ex-Porto manager to sign a five-year deal.

The Portuguese manager tried to shuffle the experienced players around too much, which caused conflict in the dressing room. He lost the respect of club captain John Terry along with Chelsea favourites Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard, leaving Roman Abramovich no choice but to relieve him of his duties.

AVB’s assistant Roberto Di Matteo was put in temporary charge, and repaid the faith in him with FA Cup and Champions League glory.

Villas-Boas said: “I watched it [Champions League final], but not right to the end. There were players in the dressing room that I liked a lot, and to whom I could only wish the best. It wasn’t easy for me to leave. I congratulated certain people with whom I’d worked there, those who had given everything, who were my friends.”

The Spurs boss was disappointed not to of been given more time to turn things around, but accepts Chelsea had no choice.

“I think that I could have been given the chance to continue. But I’m well aware that the change was the only way to have an impact in terms of results,” he added. “When you’re in that negative spiral, there are two sorts of reaction: either you stick to your project for the future and the people who are part of it, or you want immediate success. In that case, you have to change everything.”

Roman was hasty in paying so much to hire AVB, and was just as hasty in sacking him. He should not have risked so much cash on a manager who was still in an early stage in his career. It all worked out in the end with our Champions League success, but we need a long-term manager now. Jose to the rescue?

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?

Jan 122013
 

Chelsea lost out on their bid to sign Taison Freda yesterday, as the Brazilian joined Shakhtar Donestk.

This could turn out to be a blessing in disguise, with Shakhtar thought to have signed Taison to soften the loss of Willian to the Premier League.

Willian has been a long-time target of Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur, with his impressionable performances in the Champions League for the Ukrainian club.

The 24 year-old’s £22Million fee is thought to be quite steep for Spurs, but may wish to try and splash the cash for such a highly rated player.

Tottenham have lost Emmanuel Adebayor to African Cup of Nations duty, leaving the in-form Jermain Defoe as their only out-and-out striker. Willian is mainly used as an attacking midfielder, but can double up as a forward and could fill the void left by the Togo striker´s absence.

Chelsea however are seeking a long term replacement for Frank Lampard, who is set to be released from the club at the end of the season when his contract expires.

The Blues have been linked with the Brazilian midfielder constantly in recent months, partly down to his input in eliminating the West-London club from the Champions League with his two outstanding performances against us in the group stages.

I would like to see Willian join the club, but personally believe he would be bolstering the attacking midfield position, as opposed to our aim of attracting a quality replacement for Lampard. I place Modric in the same light, with Marouane Fellaini a more fitting alternative.

The Belgian can play anywhere in midfield or as a second-striker, and would prefer to see the Evertonian join the club. Do you agree?

Jan 102013
 

Ex-Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas has started the mind games early in the battle for third place, with the Portuguese manager claiming Chelsea have no long-term plans.

The Spurs boss was sacked after only 9 months into a 5 year deal, in which he had been promised time to build his own team to fit his fluent and attacking style of play.

The manager was subject to speculation that he had lost the confidence and control of his team, with the term player-power being blamed for his departure.

“There are no plans at Chelsea,” AVB is quoted as saying in The Sun. “It’s results that rule. There are times in football when it’s easier to replace the coach, but when you embrace a project you believe in people.

“There was a commitment from Abramovich and his word was given, yet there was a premature departure.”

He appears to be having a much better time with things at London rival’s Tottenham Hotspur, who currently sit in 3rd place, above Chelsea having played a game more.

On Spurs, Villas-Boas added: “We’re achieving what we’ve been asked to achieve, we’re still in the Europa League and third in the Premier League.”

This is sour grapes to say the least. He was the manager, and he failed to prove to the team that he was the boss. If the players cant respect you then why should we? You failed at Chelsea, and was lucky to be given another chance. I think AVB should concentrate on his own job…

Jan 082013
 

Chelsea are rumoured to be keen on saving Ex-Spurs midfielder Luka Modric, who has been out-of-favour at Real Madrid.

Modric was recently given the unfortunate title of worst Spanish signing of the season, by Spanish daily newspaper Marca who asked readers to vote for the best and worst signings this season. Barcelona’s Jordi Alba was voted best signing.

Modric narrowly beat Alex song to the fore, who joined Barcelona from Arsenal over the summer. The Croatian has played 22 games in all competitions since his move over the summer, 9 of which he made from the bench.

The £33Million signing is reportedly keen to escape this nightmare, and is actively seeking a move back to the Premier League. Real have yet to declare their stance on the player’s availability, with Tottenham, Chelsea and both Manchester clubs keeping a close-eye on the situation.

Chelsea are seeking a long-term replacement for Frank Lampard, who the Blues are allowing to leave at the end of his contract, which runs out next summer. The 34 year-old has been in fine form of late, yet Roman Abramovich seems to have made up his mind regardless.

Chelsea were keen admirers of the Croatian from his time at London rivals Spurs, and will be hoping to sign the player for around £24Million, leaving Madrid with a £9Million loss in 5 months.

I think Modric is a quality player, but I would rather see a strong midfielder join our forces. We already have Juan Mata and Eden Hazard as very similar players to the Croatian, and I believe Willian or Fellaini would add that bit more to our great club. Both are rumoured to be available for £22Million. Who would you prefer to see in our blue shirt this month?

Dec 302012
 

Chelsea have emerged as favourites to sign Newcastle United’s Demba Ba, who is available for a bargain fee of £7.5million.

Chelsea are widely expected to sign two strikers in January, with Daniel Sturridge leaving the Blues to join Liverpool.

Ba scored twice against potential suitors Arsenal yesterday in Newcastle’s 7-3 loss, with Demba levelling the score just before half-time to make it 1-1 with a deflected free-kick, then netting Newcastle’s third to equalise in the 69th minute before the Gunners took control with 4 more goals.

The French-born star has been linked with Chelsea, Arsenal and Spurs of late, with Arsene Wenger hinting he will not be bidding for the striker ahead of yesterday’s game against the striker at the Emirates.

The Senegal international has 13 Premier League goals so far this term, and always seems to score those all important goals.

Demba Ba has been in incredible form since his arrival at St James Park 18 months ago, scoring 29 goals in his 54 PL appearances.

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew is still hopeful that Ba will sign a new contract with the Magpie’s, changing his current minimum fee buy-out clause from £7.5M to a more reasonable £20M+.

Chelsea have been linked with almost every striker in Europe in the past few months, but Demba and Falcao would have to be my top 2. The strong Senegalese forward has been scoring when his team had been struggling, and has impressed me since his arrival in the PL with West Ham. Not to mention the fact he is a bargain £7.5M…

Dec 232012
 

Chelsea are rumoured to be considering a bid to buy Benoit Assou-Ekotto, to replace the expected loss of Ashley Cole at the end of the season.

The Cameroon international has struggled with a persistent knee injury this season, making only 3 appearances so far this term.

The 28 year-old was outstanding last season for Tottenham Hotspur, missing only 4 Premier League games, and Chelsea are rumoured to be keen on bringing the left-back to Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea currently have Ashley Cole and Ryan Bertrand at left-back, with Ashley Cole expected to leave on a free in the summer. Chelsea are apparently only willing to offer the 32 year-old a one year extension, with the player unwilling to sign a contract under two years long.

Ashley Cole has been linked with various top clubs over Europe, with Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City among possible suitors. Cole is allowed to talk to foreign clubs from January, with Manchester City having to wait until the end of the season to follow up their interest.

Chelsea have also been linked with moves for Southamptons Luke Shaw, 17, and Real Madrid’s Fabio Coentrao to replace the England international, with Shaw coming to the club as understudy to Bertrand, or Coentrao coming in to fight Ryan for his place.

I personally hope Ryan gets his chance to fight for his position in the team, which I personally think he would lose to Assou-Ekotto. The Spurs left-back has been impressive since his move to Spurs from Lens in 2006, but Bertrand could hopefully up his game from now until the end of the season. He will need to prove his consistency to stop Chelsea from signing an experienced left-back. Do you think he has what it takes?

Dec 072012
 

Current Tottenham Hotspur manager Andre Villas-Boas has complained about UEFA regulations that “reward” clubs “failure” in the Champions League group stages, specifically Chelsea’s inclusion in the Europa League round-of-32.

Andre Villas-Boas has claimed his former club Chelsea should not be rewarded for Champions League failure by playing in the Europa League.

But the ex-Stamford Bridge boss now wants his Tottenham side to meet Rafa Benitez’s Blues in Europe’s second-tier competition after Christmas.

“Sometimes it’s destiny,” he said.

Tottenham reached the last 32 of the Europa League with a 3-1 win over Greek side Panathinaikos on Thursday – their fourth straight victory in all competitions.

They cannot be drawn with Champions League holders Chelsea in the next round but AVB could face his former club in the last 16.

The Portuguese coach added: “I think it’s extremely unfair.

“The clubs that should come down are the Champions League clubs that qualify for the last 16 and then are knocked out. That’s much fairer.

“You can’t give a bonus to teams who have failed.

“In the situation as it stands, teams fail in the Champions League and are promoted to the Europa League, which is a massive bonus.

“This is not something which I’ve just invented yesterday, it’s something I said in UEFA meetings when I was at Porto.

“It’s up to them to decide, but I think it’s not fair.”

“We can’t meet in the last 32, so anything can happen,” added AVB. “Sometimes it’s destiny.

“Hopefully if we go through, we can meet each other, obviously.

“They have a team that can win the trophy, so they will be up to the late stages of the competition. We hope to do so.

“If we cross, it is going to be two magnificent games, for sure.

Villas-Boas has done well so far at Spurs, but won’t stand a chance if they meet in the Europa League. Chelsea have plenty more experience in Europe and will rise to the occasion should we meet.

I look forward to a possible London derby in the Europa League, and will no doubt be hoping the draw pits us against each other. Who else would you like us to be drawn against?

Nov 272012
 

Chelsea have been sending scouts to Holland, to watch AZ Alkmaar star Jozy Altidore, who is also being followed by Tottenham Hotspur.

The 23-year-old spent a disappointing spell on loan at Hull three years ago, but since moving to Holland, Jozy has shown real development and is tipped to become one of the big strikers in Europe.

Altidore has scored 9 goals already this season, in only 7 appearances and is attracting interest from Europe’s elite according to Earnest Stewart, the director of football at AZ.

“Jozy is developing fantastically, is a real target man for the team and translates that into goals,” he told the club’s official website.

“Something like that isn’t missed abroad. Also this season scouts from big clubs like Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur have visited AZ games.”

We desperately need some cover up front with Fernando Torres having lost his goal-scoring boots, and Daniel Sturridge struggling for confidence due to his lack of game time. I would much rather have Falcao or Suarez but a young addition would also be welcomed. Both our main rivals have four strikers so why cant we? possibly even play two at once…