SoccerLens Archives for January 2008

Transfer Rumors (30 Dec 08): Ben Arfa for Chelsea, Ivanovic and Malouda for Juve, Defoe prefers Spurs, and more

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There's a great deal of transfer news and rumors to report on as we move one day closer to the opening of the January transfer window. Chelsea to Make Ben Arfa Move? Chelsea are looking for a little attacking inspiration to help reinvigorate their Premier League title challenge after ending 2008 behind Liverpool and with [.

Response To Ronaldo’s Strangling Is Embarrassing

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Whilst writing for my United-focused blog, I have come under some criticism for my rather harsh appraisals of Cristiano Ronaldo. I don't need to get down to the ins and outs of last season and the events of the summer, but I think it will be a good thing for United when we make five [...]

The Best Goalkeepers of 2008

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With the holiday's over, and the New Year upon us. We at Soccerlens want to provide you, the readers, with the top Goalkeepers of 2008. Without further delay, here you go: Gigi Buffon The Juventus number one has long been received in the world as one of the best to currently play the game. [...]

Will Wigan star Valencia get dream Real move?

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According to the agent of in-demand Wigan star Antonio Valencia, a move to Real Madrid would ‘be a dream' for the Ecuadorian winger. Real have been linked with Valencia in recent weeks, and speculation has gone as far as saying that a £16.6m bid could be in the cards and that discussions have already [.

Juventus interested in Chelsea duo

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Juventus are considering moves for a couple of Chelsea players, according to the Daily Mail. The first one is defender Branislav Ivanovic, who the Bianconeri could make a loan move for in January. Juve were one of several clubs fighting for the Serbian center back's signature before he chose to move from Lokomotiv [.

Everton not looking to sell Manchester City targets

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According to the Guardian, Everton have given Manchester City a hands-off warning in regards to Mikel Arteta and Joleon Lescott. City have been linked with a host of talents around the Premier League, and on that list are Everton pair Arteta and Lescott, who are under contract at Goodison Park until 2012.

Harry blasts Tanner for poor decisions in Tottenham - West Brom game

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The season of good will appears to have come to a premature end for Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp after he vented his feelings - in no uncertain terms - about referee Steve Tanner's performance in Spurs' defeat at fellow strugglers West Bromwich Albion. Not-so 'appy 'arry will also being expecting some late Christmas post from [.

Defoe prefers Tottenham return over Villa move

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Yesterday, I reported that Aston Villa were making a £16m offer for Portsmouth striker Jermain Defoe. Since then, Aston Villa manager Martin O'Neill has denied making any such move, and as it happens, the non-interest may be mutual. Today, the Mail reported that Defoe met with Pompey manager Tony Adams yesterday and stated [.

Tottenham rebuffed in Bellamy chase but hopeful over Given deal

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It appears that any efforts to pry Craig Bellamy away from West Ham in January are going to be futile. West Ham, despite their financial straits, rejected Tottenham's initial £6m offer for the Welsh striker, and also being thrown in the trash bin was a £7.5m offer from Manchester City. Now comes the [.

Chelsea set to bid for Marseille star Ben Arfa?

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According to the Daily Mirror, Chelsea are planning to make a £10m+ move for Marseille star Hatem Ben Arfa. The 21-year-old left winger has emerged as a target for Luiz Felipe Scolari, who could be looking for some additional attacking punch to help inspire a side whose lack of consistency has seen them fall [.

Droylsden v Chesterfield: The strangest cup-tie of the year

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Non-league Droylsden's FA Cup dream appears to be over after the club were thrown out of the competition for fielding an illegible player in their 2-1 defeat of League Two Chesterfield. Droyslden have said they plan to appeal but, if upheld, this expulsion brings to an end a month-long tie between the two sides that's seen [.

L’Équipe’s All-Star Best XI of 2008

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It's that time of the year again. With the days fast approaching December 31, awards for the "Best XI" of 2008 are being handed left and right. Even Soccerlens jumped on the bandwagon (see our "Soccerlens All-Star XI - The Best Footballers of 2008" post). So, while you vote for UEFA's Team of the Year here [.

Transfer Rumors (29 Dec 08): AC Milan to make Agger bid, Villa line up Defoe, Real end Young pursuit, and more

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We're only a few days away from the start of a new year and the opening of the winter transfer window. I know, it's exciting, right? A few high-profile deals have already been wrapped up, and though the window doesn't open for another few days, several sides are busy trying to make bids and [...]

Arsene looking to Newcastle trio to bolster Arsenal?

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Arsenal could make a triple raid of Newcastle in January, according to a weekend report by the News of the World. The Gunners are in search of a new keeper to provide competition to Manuel Almunia, and his scouts have told him that there is nobody better available for a decent price than Newcastle [.

Real end pursuit of £30m Villa star Young - for now

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Real Madrid won't be making a move for Aston Villa star Ashley Young in the January transfer window, after being told that the 23-year-old attacker will cost them £30m. Real were reportedly working hard last week to make a deal for Young happen, but Villa have set their asking price higher than Real are [.

Villa line up Defoe with Bent as Plan B

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Champions League hopefuls Aston Villa are set to dive headfirst in the transfer market in January in order to aid their challenge for the top four, and striker looks to be the top priority of Martin O'Neill's list. The name at the top of the list is Portsmouth's Jermain Defoe, and according to the [.

West Ham reject Manchester City’s bid for duo

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According to the Daily Mail, Manchester City have had bids for Craig Bellamy and Scott Parker rejected by West Ham. City reportedly made bids of £7.5m each for Bellamy and Parker, both of which were quickly turned down. Gianfranco Zola has been pretty adamant about not wanting to sell any of his best [.

October 2008 Review: When West Ham went bankrupt and Arsenal dropped out of the title race

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October saw the economic crisis hit the Premier League, with several football club owners suffering losses to their financial assets. Each club would deal with this differently - West Ham had already sold off players in the summer to reduce their wage bill and were again saying that they had no money for transfers in [.

December 2008 Review: When Liverpool Were Top And Arsenal Lost Fabregas

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December was notable for managerial changes as clubs prepared for the January transfer window and their chance to save their seasons. Real Madrid sacked Schuster and replaced him with Ramos, Blackburn fired Paul Ince and brought in Sam Allardyce while Roy Keane resigned from Sunderland leaving Ricky Sbragia in charge until the board appointed him [.

November 2008 Review: When Arsenal and Manchester United lost ground and Tottenham beat Liverpool

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November would see Arsenal and frustrate in the league and dazzle in the Carling Cup while Tottenham did pretty much the same, knocking out Liverpool in the process. Outside England we saw Bayern Munich announcing plans for an academy in India, Maradona being appointed as Argentina's manager, Axel Witsel being pegged as the latest hot talent [.

February 2008 Review: When Tottenham beat Chelsea and Manchester United burst Arsenal’s bubble

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February marked the beginning of several storylines for 2008 as well as the beginning of the end of for a few teams and managers. In purely footballing terms though, Egypt stole the headlines with a memorable triumph at the 2008 African Cup of Nations on the back of a string of impressive performances throughout the [.

March 2008 Review: When England dominated Europe and Mascherano threw a fit

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March was somewhat of a slow month for Soccerlens but the world of football saw it's share of football, debate and controversy. Arsenal belied their league form with a 2-0 win at the San Siro against an experienced Milan side to knock them out of the Champions League. It was heralded as vindication for Wenger's youth [.

April 2008 Review: When Liverpool wanted Barry and Barcelona couldn’t beat Manchester United

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April is, amongst other things, time for April Fools Day and this year saw Soccerlens pull out some really crazy ideas out of the hat, from a Manchester United orgy to various club takeovers. I wish I had predicted Abu Dhabi United taking over Manchester City, but that just goes to show you that fact [.

May 2008 Review: When Manchester United Did The Double And Real Madrid Humbled Barcelona

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While Manchester United and Chelsea were headed to Moscow (and to a last-day title decider) and Liverpool were after Barry, Arsenal and Tottenham were both looking across Europe for an experienced midfielder to shore up the squad. Managers rarely do what they're supposed to but it hasn't stopped fans from expecting them to do the right [.

June 2008 Review: When Spain won the Euros and the world hated Ronaldo

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June kicked off with a bang, literally - Jose Mourinho signed on as Inter Milan manager and Ronaldo, fresh from doing the league and european double with Manchester United, publicly admitted in an interview that he wanted to play for Real Madrid. The Ronaldo saga kicked into full force in June, with Manchester United fans turning [.

July 2008 Review: When Tottenham lost their strikers and Nereida Gallardo became a star

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With the Euros behind us, July would start the transfer season and with it all the mindless speculation along with the few sensational transfers here and there. Chelsea signed Deco, which seemed a risk at the time considering his age which gave him little time to 'adapt'. Arsenal were signing kids left and right, pipping United [.

August 2008 Review: When Liverpool Had No Money And Argentina Won The Olympics

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August saw the usual pre-season predictions doing the rounds, with the major discussion in Spain surrounding Barcelona's transfer spending and Madrid's chase of Ronaldo and subsequent treatment of Robinho. Liverpool found it impossible to get funding for Stanley Park, meaning that Liverpool's new stadium would not get the green light for construction till at least next [.

September 2008 Review: When Manchester City became Manchester Dhabi and Newcastle United went for sale

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The summer transfer window was extended by a day to let clubs complete their deals on a Monday, and this 'last day' was memorable for many reasons. Abu Dhabi United bought Manchester City from Thaksin Shinawatra, and before everything had been sorted out legally they were making bids for top strikers across Europe, with Dimitar Berbatov, [.

January 2008 Review: When Keegan led Newcastle and Tottenham beat Arsenal

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With Arsenal, Manchester United and Chelsea squaring off for the Premier League title race, the press were hailing the 2007/2008 as the most exciting, most unpredictable season of football they'd ever seen. Chelsea had to contend with a new manager whom everyone blamed for their failings, Arsenal were cruising, seemingly recovered from their post-Invincibles hangover [.

Manchester City to make £4m offer for Owen

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According to the Daily Mail, Manchester City are planning on making a £4m bid for Michael Owen next month. City are going to be in the market for a new striker in January, and while the likes of David Villa have been linked with the club, Mark Hughes might be looking more towards an [...]

Ferdinand out for Middlesbrough game, no Tottenham return for Defoe, and more

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22:30 - My fantasy team took quite the hit with Cesc Fabregas getting knocked out of action until April, and it's taking another, albeit more short-term, hit with Rio Ferdinand being ruled out for tomorrow's match against Middlesbrough thanks to a back issue. He'll also miss next weekend's FA Cup tie against Southampton.

SL Roundup: Barcelona to tour U.S. again in 2009, Becks under terror threat in Dubai, and more

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You've had ample time to unwrap your Christmas gifts, recover from eating a tenth of your weight at Christmas dinner, and ponder 1000 times why you drank all of that eggnog. Now it's time for us to unwrap a little something of our own as a late Christmas gift to you, something that we [...]

Newcastle United v. Liverpool - 28 December 2008 - English Premier League - Live Blog

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Newcastle United v. Liverpool Stadium: St. James Park, England Competition: English Premier League Date: 28 December 2008 Kickoff: 12:00 GMT, 7:00 ET Newcastle United will host Premier League leaders, Liverpool, in an important match for both sides. Soccerlens will be bringing you the action live! Log on to the site 15 minutes before kickoff for the live blog!

Premier League TV, Premier League Online and Football Fans

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Last week Barclays Premier League sent out formal invitations to broadcasters interested in bidding for the next round of Premier League TV rights for the 2010-2011 to 2012-2013 seasons. With the current TV deal worth £2.7bn over three seasons and the demand for Premier League football increasing (especially in overseas markets), the current economic climate [.

Chelsea and Manchester United still ahead of Liverpool in the title stakes

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Although you've got to give Liverpool credit for coming from behind against Arsenal at the Emirates on Sunday, I've seen nothing this season to convince me that the title is heading anywhere but Stamford Bridge or Old Trafford. I said in August it was going to be a two-horse race and that's how I still see [.

Relegation Watch: Tottenham, West Ham, Manchester City, Newcastle and Sunderland all struggling

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Who the hell is Ricky Sbragia? Crazy name, great manager apparently. I ask the question because, as a Spurs fan, I'm not happy. A couple of weeks ago we were flying up the table like a Christmas angel on eggnog and now this Sbragia fella turns up and Sunderland have leapfrogged us. The problem is, what with [.

Boxing Day Predictions: Tottenham, Liverpool, United to win, Arsenal, Newcastle, City to lose and more

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2008 has been a remarkable season for English football. Richest league (and club) world. Best player in the world. An all-English Champions League final. English World Champions. England topping their World Cup qualifying group. English clubs being the most feared in Europe, even if (as in Arsenal's case) they can't defend a throw-in to safe [.

Official Football Players’ Websites

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A list of official websites for the most popular internet-savvy footballers, neatly arranged in alphabetical order. Please do not use this as an excuse to stalk your favourite stars or send hate mate to those in the opposition team. Alright then, official footballer websites, knock yourself out. Please note that any names with a question mark next [.

Transfer Rumors (24 Dec 08): Pennant too greedy for Real, Alonso in Arsenal link again, and more

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Unfortunately for many football fans young and old alike, and for that matter, many a manager as well, jolly old Saint Nick doesn't grant transfer wishes, though that copy of Football Manager 09 and that Ronaldo replica kit will do for many of you, I'd imagine. However, I'd venture a guess and say that [.

Real trying to thrash out deal for Villa star Young

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While it sounds just a little outlandish that Real Madrid have been after the greedy Jermaine Pennant, a more sensible target of Juande Ramos is Aston Villa's Ashley Young, who has been linked with the club recently. And according to the Daily Mail, Real are working their hardest to try to hammer out a [.

Hoffenheim star Ibisevic drawing interest from Serie A leaders Inter

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The price that a smaller club pays for success is having some of their best players linked with the best clubs, and that's the case for Bundesliga surprise outfit Hoffenheim. The newly-promoted side have risen to the top of the Bundesliga table at the halfway point of the season, and a big reason why [.

Pennant’s wage demands kill surprise Real Madrid move

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So, if you're sitting and stewing on the Liverpool bench, and the chance of a lifetime comes along, what do you do? If you're Jermaine Pennant, it's ask for too much money and mess everything up. According to the Daily Mail, Real Madrid (yes, that Real Madrid, the one with nine Champions League titles and [.

Arsenal back in for Liverpool’s Alonso?

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How's this for a little irony? According to the Daily Mail, Arsenal could be set to turn to Xabi Alonso yet again to strengthen their midfield. I can't help but have a small chuckle at this one, considering that Alonso is the one who, you know, is responsible for Cesc Fabregas being laid up. [...]

Africa’s Biggest Football Rivalries

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All the major football rivalries from African club football: Featured Derby: The Cairo Derby, Cairo, Egypt Al Ahly vs Zamalek The showpiece of Egyptian Football, and arguably the highlight of the Arab footballing calender. Games between these Egyptian giants are so hotly contested that foreign referees are brought in to officiate.

CONCACAF’s Biggest Football Rivalries

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Major club football rivalries from North America, Central America and the Carribean: Featured Derby: El Clasico, Mexico Club America vs Chivas The El Clasico is the largest rivalry in Mexico. Representing the two largest cities in Mexico, Club America  (Mexico City) and Chivas (Guadalajara) are the most successful clubs in Mexico.

Europe’s Biggest Football Rivalries

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All the major football rivalries from Europe: United Kingdom Featured Derby: The Old Firm Derby, Glasgow, Scotland Celtic FC vs Rangers FC Celtic and Rangers have been competing against each other since 1888. They have contested 381 games, with Rangers currently holding the advantage, 152 victories to Celtic's 137.

Asia’s Biggest Football Rivalries

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All of Asia's major club football rivalries: Featured Derby: The Tehran Derby, Tehran, Iran Esteghlal FC vs Persepolis FC  World Soccer Magazine declared the Tehran derby as the most important derby in Asia. First contested in 1968, Esteghal FC currently hold the advantage having won 20 games compared to Persepolis's 15 victories.

South America’s Biggest Football Rivalries

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All the major football rivalries from South America: Argentina Featured Derby: Superclasico, Buenos Aires, Argentina River Plate vs Boca Juniors The Superclasico is arguably the world's biggest derby game. Pitting the most popular ( It's commonly accepted that close to 70% of football fans in Argentina support either River or Boca) and successful clubs in Argentina against each other.

Major Club Football Rivalries

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They are the first games you look for when the fixtures are drawn pre-season. The games you crowd into the local pub with your mates to watch religiously. What is it about a derby game that captures the raw emotion & passion of football? They are much more than a normal game of football that's [.

Fortress Ibrox

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We Rangers fans do a lot and I mean a lot of moaning. We moan about team selection, Sir David Murray, Walter Smith, the players, the lack of media attention, the unwanted media attention, the standard of referees, the fact that Chick Young can't spell, Setanta, other club's fans, biased commentary, the quality of the [.

Transfer Rumors (23 Dec 08): Arshavin to Arsenal, (Antonio) Valencia to Real Madrid, Downing to Tottenham, and more

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All it takes is one significant injury to change your January transfer plans. You can be planning for a quiet month, and all of a sudden you're in a mad scramble to sign the best player available when the pickings are pretty slim. That's the position that Arsenal could find themselves in with [...

Real Madrid to make 14m offer for Wigan star Valencia?

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David Bentley, Aaron Lennon, Didier Zokora, Adam Johnson, Lassana Diarra. All of those Premier League-based players have been linked with moves to Real Madrid recently, and you can add Wigan winger Antonio Valencia to that list now. Recent reports are linking Real with a £14m move for the 23-year-old, who has been linked [.

Arsenal eye Arshavin in wake of Fabregas injury blow?

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Many an Arsenal fan may be still coming to grips with the fact that Cesc Fabregas will miss the next four months with a knee injury suffered in Arsenal's draw with Liverpool on Sunday. Fabregas' injury leaves yet another significant hole in an Arsenal side that's already missing Tomas Rosicky and Theo Walcott to [.

Arsenal distance themselves from Keane move

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Arsenal won't even so much consider a move for Liverpool striker Robbie Keane in January, according to the Daily Star. Keane has been linked with a quick move away from Anfield thanks to a slow start, but Arsene Wenger's (alleged) quotes should put any speculation linking Arsenal with the Irish hit-man to bed before [.

Spurs set to shell out 15m for Middlesbrough’s Downing

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According to the Daily Mirror, Tottenham are set to finally meet Middlesbrough's valuation of midfielder Stewart Downing and make a £15m cash offer to snare the England man in January. Spurs have been after Downing for quite a while, and Boro have stuck to their guns all the same. Recently, an offer that [.

West Ham set Bellamy asking price at £12m

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According to the Daily Mirror, West Ham are willing to sell in-demand striker Craig Bellamy, but they're holding out for £12m for the Welsh striker. Yesterday, I reported that Aston Villa were interested in making an offer of £7m plus striker Marlon Harewood for Bellamy, Of the clubs that have been linked with Bellamy, [.

Arsenal lose Fabregas for 4 months, who will Wenger sign / appoint captain?

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Cesc Fabregas was injured in Arsenal's home draw against Liverpool (he ruptured his knee ligaments in a challenge with Xabi Alonso) and while initial estimates put the time out at 2-3 weeks, Wenger has now said that they're looking at 3, maybe 4 months without their new captain. Our thoughts are with Fabregas and hopefully he [.

Celtic’s Pennant move could trigger McGeady exit

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According to the Daily Mirror, Celtic have made tabled an official offer for Liverpool winger Jermaine Pennant. Pennant, whose contract runs out in the summer, was recently linked with a cash/player swap move to Tottenham that involved Aaron Lennon going to Liverpool. However, Celtic could see him as a replacement for the out-of-favor Aiden McGeady, [.

UEFA Europa League 2009-2010 Schedule

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From next season, the UEFA Cup will be known as the UEFA Europa League (previous discussion on name change). Apart from the name change, the event has been overhauled and will now feature 12 groups of four teams, with each team playing the other three sides and the two top competitors moving on. Title holders [.

Touchy-Feely Arsenal, Owen for Newcastle pay-cut, Innocent Chelsea captain, Lass to topple Liverpool, new Leeds manager and more

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Today's roundup is brought to you by the lovely Gemma Atkinson, who has unceremoniously dumped Marcus Bent and is waiting for your phone call focusing on her career instead. Maybe this will be the last time we ever need to hear, think or talk about whats-his-name? A note to David Beckham fans (there *must* be some [.

Top 20 Young Footballers to Watch in 2009

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All that most football managers really want for Christmas is a promising young player to emerge as an established star in the coming year. As the game becomes more and more global and the wealth of the bigger clubs increases, so too do the scouting networks of these clubs which now extend to every continent and [.

Transfer Rumors (22 Dec 08): Foster to leave United, United and Chelsea chase Belgian star, City like Villareal keeper, and more

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It's the start of a new week, and after a couple of days off, I'm back in the saddle to give you all the latest in transfer news and rumors. We've got rumors involving the Premier League's best and brightest, including reports of a potential head-to-head battle between Manchester United and Chelsea for a [.

English Premier League Club Sponsors

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English Premier League clubs and their sponsors (kit, stadium, the whole caboodle): Arsenal Kit Sponsor: Emirates Stadium Sponsor: Emirates The deal with Arab airline Emirates commenced in the 2006/07 season following the Gunners' move from Highbury. The sponsorship is worth £100m over fifteen years and was, when signed, the biggest sponsorship deal in English football when you combine [.

English Championship Club Sponsors

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Coca-Cola Championship clubs and their sponsors (kit, stadium, the whole caboodle): Barnsley Kit Sponsor: Barnsley Building Society Minor Sponsors: Perry's, Dimensions, C.K. Beckett, Thomas Cook Birmingham City Kit Sponsor: F&C Investments Minor Sponsors: visitbirmingham.co.uk, Party Poker, Bet365 Blackpool Kit Sponsor: Carbrini Sportswear Minor Sponsors: Texaco, Thomas Cook, E-On Bristol City Kit Sponsor: DAS Insurance Minor Sponsors: E-On, Texaco, Britannia Building Society Burnley Kit Sponsor: Holland's Pies Minor Sponsors: Lloyd's [.

English League One Club Sponsors

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Coca-Cola League One clubs and their sponsors (kit, stadium, the whole caboodle): Brighton & Hove Albion Kit Sponsor: IT First Minor Sponsors: Thomas Cook, Legal & General, Donatello Bristol Rovers Kit Sponsor: Cowlin Construction Minor Sponsors: Filton College, Britannia Building Society, E-On, Thomas Cook Carlisle Kit Sponsor: Stobart Transport Minor Sponsors: Unison, David Allen & Co, Thomas Cook, Willow Water Cheltenham Town Kit Sponsor: Mira Showers Minor [.

English League Two Club Sponsors

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Coca-Cola League Two clubs and their sponsors (kit, stadium, the whole caboodle): Accrington Stanley Stadium Sponsor: Combined Stabilisation Kit Sponsor: Combined Stabilisation Minor Sponsors: John Smith's, Greyhound Ford, Oswaldtwistle Mills, Hyndburn, JJB Fitness Club Aldershot Town Stadium Sponsor: EBB Paper Kit Sponsor: EBB Paper Minor Sponsors: Charters, Greene King Brewing Company, Croner, West London Training, Pennycom Barnet Kit Sponsor: Mortgage Express Minor Sponsors: SGB Rovacabin, [.

Frustrated Foster wants to leave Manchester United

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According to the News of the World, Manchester United keeper Ben Foster is ready to leave Manchester United in search of more first-team opportunities. Thanks to injuries and Edwin Van der Sar refusing to go away quietly, Foster hasn't made quite the expected impact at United yet, and a winter transfer request could be [.

Aston Villa become latest entrant into Craig Bellamy sweepstakes

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According to reports, Aston Villa could be set to make a £7m + Marlon Harewood bid for West Ham striker Craig Bellamy. Bellamy has been heavily linked with a January exit from Upton Park, with Celtic and Manchester City both mentioned as potential destinations. As with those two, there's a link with Bellamy to [.

Ligue 1 Le Havre in for Manchester United striker Manucho

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According to the Daily Mirror, struggling Ligue 1 side Le Havre are in negotiations with Manchester United for striker Manucho. Newly-promoted Le Havre currently sit bottom of Ligue 1, with 12 points from 19 matches. After leading Ligue 2 in goals last season on the way to winning the championship, the first half [.

Manchester City target Villareal keeper Lopez

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According to the Daily Mail, Manchester City have ended their pursuit of Gianluigi Buffon in favor of a cheaper (and potentially more attainable) alternative in Villareal keeper Diego Lopez. Lopez left Real Madrid for Villareal in a €6m deal last year, and he established himself as Villareal's first-choice keeper in his first campaign.

Should lower-league football in England be regionalised?

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Fans of a certain age will remember the old Third Division North and South that ended in the late 50s. Slightly younger fans may remember the formation of the Alliance (now the Conference) in 1979 - the first fully nationalised league in the non-league. And for some managers and chairmen, those older days are their [.

The 2008 Soccerlens All-Star XI - The Best Footballers of 2008

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For those of us who are consumed by football every year brings new thrills and disappointments, a million what ifs and if onlys and ultimately a feeling of elation, satisfaction or despair, depending on where our unfailing loyalties lie. We laugh and cry, argue and debate, get over-emotional and sometimes regret what we say but [.

The Death of the Hokey Cokey is not Okey Dokey

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"Nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes." But Benjamin Franklin was wrong. He omitted to mention the capacity of that curious breed, the West of Scotland Irish Roman Catholic, to be offended. There are few activities in which Scotland can boast the best in the world; cycling and, um, more cycling being [.

The Night The Unbelievable Nearly Happened: United’s Difficult Victory in the World Club Cup

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Underestimating your adversary is a poor strategy in any competition. Last night in Yokohama, where they were contesting the final of the World Club Cup, Manchester United came dangerously close to doing that. Their opponent, Copa Libertadores champion Liga de Quito of Ecuador, put up a courageous fight.

David Beckham: “I Want to Give a Hand to Milan.”

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Air Beckham landed yesterday in Milan. The move has been criticised by some who see it as a 'glamour' signing for Milan and a 'fashion capital' move for the Beckhams, but Beckham has always had his critics on and off the pitch, it's the price that comes with being the most famous footballer on the [.

Great Britain FC and London 2012

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So it is final - FIFA have announced that a football team from Great Britain will appear in the Olympic games at London 2012. Even if the Welsh FA, the Northern Irish FA, and the Scottish FA don't want to happen it will; even if it means that only English players, coaches and the like [...]

Manchester United Are World Champions, Aston Villa Can End Year In Third Place and more

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Today's news update is brought to you by the totally-natural Lucy Pinder, and the beautiful Heidi Montag on your right (RSS readers please click through to the site, you'll want to see this). Right, back to football: Manchester United are WORLD CHAMPIONS! OK, maybe it's not the World Cup per se but it IS the official world [.

Roque Santa Cruz Heading Towards Blackburn Exit?

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Blackburn Rovers are struggling in the Premier League at the moment and it appears that they are set to struggle more, especially as top players have started voicing their disinclination to carry on playing for the club anymore. Star striker Roque Santa Cruz has released a come-and-get me plea as he seems quite eager to move [.

Manchester City NOT In The Hunt For West Ham’s Craig Bellamy

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According to the British tabloid The Daily Mail, Premier League cash-bag Manchester City are looking forward to signing the out-of-form Welsh striker Craig Bellamy from West Ham United for £7 million. Which is certainly a huge surprise, isn't it? After all, Bellamy hasn't been in great form and is not even wanted, if certain reports are [.

The Beckhams Finally Arrive In Milan

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David Beckham is finally an AC Milan player, albeit for a short period of time. He arrived in the Italian city on Saturday morning after which Beckham went for the medical. Beckham is joining the Italian powerhouse on a short term contract as the MLS season is now over and the former Manchester United and [.

Gary Johnson is ready for primetime management

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In light of the two management roles made vacant at Premiership sides Sunderland and Blackburn Rovers, many managers were considered. Some candidates had Premiership experience, some had experience abroad, and some had little or no coaching experience at all. However, one manager was ignored altogether, and when looking at his record and undoubted pedigree, it's [.

The FA’s Evra Report - The United Perspective

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The tabloids and broadsheets alike latched on to a good story this week, following the FA's decision to publish the documents relating to the 'Battle of Stamford Bridge' case, involving Patrice Evra and Chelsea groundsman, Sam Bethell. It was alleged by two United representatives that Evra had been called a "f*****g immigrant" by Bethell, an accusation [.

John Terry Commits Himself To Chelsea For Life

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Chelsea skipper John Terry has given the fans a very heartening boost by declaring that he intends to play for the London club for the rest of his life. The 28-year old England international rose through the youth ranks at Chelsea and has come of age to become the captain of one of the European football's [.

Michael Owen To Stay At Newcastle After All?

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The future of England international striker Michael Owen is getting increasingly convoluted as Newcastle United manager Joe Kinnear seems to be confident that Owen shall sign a new contract with the club whereas reports suggest otherwise. It was earlier reported by the British tabloid The Sun that Newcastle have offered a 80,000 pound per week contract [.

The Top Five Fantasy Football Games of 2008

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If you're new to fantasy football, read our intro to fantasy football. The online Fantasy Football market is undoubtedly one of the most crowded and competitive gaming markets on the web, forget war games, forget Football Manager, forget Lemmings (I bet some can't even remember Lemmings?!!), all you need for a game is a list of [.

Juventus not interested in signing Arsenal’s Gallas

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According to Juventus sporting director Alessio Secco, Juventus won‘t be signing Arsenal defender William Gallas or anyone else in January. Gallas has been heavily linked with a move away from Arsenal in the last month, and it would appear all too likely that he's nearing the end of his time at the Emirates.

Transfer Rumors (19 Dec 08): Valencia put £120m price tag on City target Villa, Fabiano to Chelsea, no Juve move for Gallas, and more

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The days are counting down, down, down to the end of 2008. Christmas is next week, and right after that, we'll be saying goodbye to this year and hello to a new one - and the January transfer window. Many clubs have wishes for the new year that won't be granted, but who [...]

Premier League Fantasy Football Review

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If the Premier League was an ice cream, it would lick itself. That's a fact. The money swishing around the self-proclaimed "Greatest League on Earth" has given the English top flight plenty of reason to look very pleased with itself. But whilst Premier League fans bemoan ticket price increases, kick-off times altered for the benefit [.

Chelsea set for 20m move for Sevilla’s Luis Fabiano?

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One of the hottest bits of news off the presses today is that Chelsea are moving in on Sevilla striker Luis Fabiano, with £20m the price that the Blues are willing to pay for the Brazilian international. Chelsea's search for a new forward has seen them linked with the likes of Michael Owen, Sanli [.

Best Fantasy Football Tips

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So, how do you get good at Fantasy Football? Well perhaps I am not really the best man to be asking, judging by my side's shoddy showing this season - I blame Jo's ineptitude & Carlos Tevez's absence personally, and how was I to know Geovanni would be such a coup for Hull?! But there [...]

Aiden McGeady: The Art Of Making Friends

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When Aiden McGeady let rip at his manager after Celtic's 1-1 draw on Saturday, he probably felt justified in his actions. After all, every decision he's made down the years has been approved from the rafters amongst the adoring Celtic support and media. When he turned out for Ireland's schools team the blame was laid at [.

08-09 UEFA Cup Playoff Draw

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The UEFA Cup last 32 and last 16 draws were announced today: Last 32 draw (first leg 18-19 Feb/ second leg 26 Feb): Paris Saint-Germain v Wolfsburg FC Copenhagen v MANCHESTER CITY NEC Nijmegen v Hamburg Sampdoria v Metalist Kharkiv Braga v Standard Liege ASTON VILLA v CSKA Moscow Lech Poznan v Udinese Olympiakos v Saint-Etienne Fiorentina v Ajax Aalborg v Deportivo La Coruna Werder Bremen v [.

Tottenham Hotspur Looking To Bring Back Former Liverpool Star Finnan To The Premier League

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Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp is on Mission Recruitment next month (more of the same at White Hart Lane, it seems) and has been lining up a number of decent and top quality players. And among his wish-list is Steve Finnan. British tabloid The Daily Mail has reported that Spurs are eying Steve Finnan for a [.

Valencia stick 120m price tag on Manchester City target Villa

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According to the Daily Mirror, Manchester City have been told by Valencia that David Villa is going to cost them the princely sum of £120m. It's been a few years since I've been in a math class, but judging by my calculations, that's just a shade above the £52m that City were reportedly set [...]

Allardyce gets 10m January transfer kitty to bolster Blackburn squad

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New Blackburn manager Sam Allardyce will have £10m to spend on new signings in January in order to strengthen the squad for a second-half survival push. Considering that there are multiple needs to be filled with that money, Allardyce will be hoping to get as much immediate value out of that £10m as possible, [.

Transfer Rumors (18 Dec 08): Barca after Van Persie, Liverpool eye Lennon, Juve defender interests Arsenal, and more

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In the world of transfer news and rumors, rule #1 is (or at least it should be) not to believe everything that you read. If you did, you'd have your own remake of The Exorcist. Even if it's not believable, it's always fun to read, and we've got plenty of transfer speculation for [...]

The Art and Science of Goalkeeping

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Goalkeeping is a special position that takes a special individual to play. I should know - I have been playing it for 15 years and currently train goalkeepers with a local club here in the US and several camps throughout the year. What most people outside of football/soccer do not understand is that to [.

Best Goalkeeper Training Tips & Goalkeeping Equipment

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Following on our article on the art and science of goalkeeping, here are some of the goalkeeper training tips that I utilize with my students as well as what I think is the best goalkeeping equipment out there today: I. Best Goalkeeper Training Tips Diving Drills to do Alone One of the most important things for a goalkeeper to [.

Five Best Mainstream Football Bloggers Of 2008

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It's 2008: the blogging revolution has been absorbed by the establishment press and propped up as a new 'form' of journalism.  Just read Andrew Sullivan's recent apologist screed on blogs in the Atlantic.  Apparently, the do-it-yourself amateur element is no longer intrinsic to the blog as literary form.

Harry Redknapp Pulls The Curtain Down On Gilberto’s Tottenham Future

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Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp has effectively shown Gilberto the exit door after publicly declaring that the Brazilian international has no future at White Hart Lane. This follows a disastrous performance against Spartak Mowcow in the UEFA Cup on Thursday in what was his first appearance for Spurs under Harry Redknapp but it already seems to [.

Fantasy Football - A Whole New Ball Game

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I'm not a happy boy, and the game hasn't even kicked off. I haven't even had to endure the likes of Yossi Benayoun, Andrea Dossena and, later, David Ngog, masquerading as Liverpool players. I haven't yet had to watch Craig Bellamy's fizzing 25 yard strike clatter off a Kop End post, or see Dirk Kuyt's [.

Arsenal 1-1 Liverpool - 21 December 2008 - English Premier League - Live Blog

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Arsenal (Van Persie 24′) 1-1 Liverpool (Keane 42′) Stadium: Emirates Stadium, England Competition: English Premier League Date: 21 December 2008 Kickoff: 16:00 GMT, 11:00 EST Arsenal and Liverpool fought to an ill-tempered draw at the Emirates. Soccerlens brought you the action live! Click below for the live-blog and feel free to leave comments!

Arsenal to beat Liverpool, Manchester United goals, Chelsea face the crunch and the magic of European football

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Today's roundup is brought you by the world of mainstream football blogging. Oh, and Melissa Satta, if you're not the literary kind. Never let it be said that Soccerlens didn't have something for everyone. And I mean everyone. Arsenal take on Liverpool in a top four (or second two, if you want to be accurate) clash [.

Portsmouth look to old boy O’Neil to replace outgoing Diarra

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According to the Daily Mirror, Portsmouth already have their eye on a replacement for Real Madrid-bound midfielder Lassana Diarra, with the club already said to be in talks wih Middlesbrough to bring Gary O'Neil back to the club. Pompey are set to pocket a large sum from the £20m+ sale of Diarra, and £5m [.

Barcelona become latest club interested in Arsenal star Van Persie

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According to the Daily Mail, Barcelona are lining up a move for Arsenal forward Robin Van Persie. According to their report, Van Persie will take over for Thierry Henry, who the club feels would prefer a return to England so that he can be closer to his daughter. Van Persie, who has had [...]

Liverpool to make swap swoop for Tottenham winger in January?

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According to the Daily Mail, Liverpool are interested in Tottenham winger Aaron Lennon, and will offer £7m plus out of favor winger Jermaine Pennant for Lennon in January. Lennon has gotten off to a very good start this season, and he was recently the subject of reported interest from Real Madrid.

Fernando Torres Going Nowhere Near Manchester City…In January

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Well, just for the confirmation, Fernando Torres is not leaving Liverpool next month. His agent has declared that the Spanish star is staying on at Anfield beyond January. Of course, there was hardly much chance of the Spanish international striker leaving Anfield anytime soon but given Manchester City's apparent desperation and complacency to sign any player [.

Sir Alex Ferguson: Sell Ronaldo To A Mob? I Wouldn’t Even Sell Them A Virus!

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It is transfer time and understandably speculation on Cristiano Ronaldo has started to sprout. And understandably Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson is not very happy with the current situation. Spanish paper El Mundo recently carried a news in which they quoted the Real Madrid diretor Pedro Trapote as saying that they have reached an 'gentleman's [.

Ridiculous Rumours: Real Madrid and Barcelona Sign Ronaldo and Aguero

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Well, if reports published on elconfidencial.com are to be trusted, then Spanish champions and European powerhouse Real Madrid have signed Sergio Aguero from Atletico Madrid. Or at least, they have reached an agreement. It has emerged that Real and Atletico have agreed on a deal with Real to pay their crosstown rivals a massive 60 million [.

Arsenal Eyeing Juventus’ Giorgio Chiellini?

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Premier League side Arsenal are struggling at the moment and club manager Arsene Wenger is seemingly willing to sign some established players in January. The Gunners have been linked with a number of players in the past few days and now the name of Giorgio Chiellini has been thrown into the hat. According to The Daily [.

Portsmouth Exodus: Defoe To Tottenham, Everyone Else To Manchester City?

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Portsmouth are bracing for a mass exodus in January with half of their squad expected to leave Fratton Park. And one of those who shall almost certainly be heading for the exit door is the England international striker Jermain Defoe. Defoe was signed by Portsmouth from Tottenham Hotsour in January earlier this year when Harry Redknapp [.

UEFA Champions League Playoffs Draw - LIVEBLOG

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The draw for the 1st knockout round (Round of 16) of the UEFA Champions League takes place at the House of European Football in Nyon, Switzerland, at 12:00 CET Friday (11:00 UK time). Keeping with its tradition, Soccerlens is bringing you the draw LIVE as the 8 matches are drawn. Below are the potential pairings for [.

Barry Ferguson – a Rangers Teddy Berra?

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There has not been a much more polarizing topic amongst any circle of Rangers supporters this year than that of the return of Barry Ferguson. After giving his all for the club in the UEFA Cup run and domestic runs of last season, the Captain did the right thing and opted for surgery to repair [...]

It Takes Three to Tango in Argentina

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For the first time in history of the Torneo Apertura or Opening (there are two seasons in Argentina) championship in Argentina, three teams ended up level on points (39). Boca Juniors, who have 22 domestic titles. San Lorenzo, who have 10 domestic titles. Tigre, who have never won any domestic silverware.

Crazy Football Haircuts

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Footballers has it's share of interesting characters. Some are interesting by virtue of their names, others by who they wake up next to (you thought I'd link to footballers' wives, didn't you?), and there are those who just have funny hair. Not exactly award-winning, I'll grant you that, but footballer haircuts have kept us amused for [.

Hamburg 3-1 Villa - The harsh truth about Aston Villa

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Villa had already qualified for the knockout stages of the UEFA Cup, so in some ways last night's game was irrelevant, meaning the B-team was trawled out to Germany to face an impressive Hamburg at full strength. But then in other ways winning the game did have relevance, such as pride, morale and an easier [.

Transfer Rumors (17 Dec 08): Real to ink Diarra with Ron to follow, Juve after Liverpool duo, Wigan want Owen, and more

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Today's transfer roundup isn't light on speculation involving big names and big clubs. Some of it's nothing but filler and hot air, but somewhere in there is at least a little truth. Where is that truth? Well, read on to find it. Real's Ron Deal Back On? Don't shoot the messenger, but the [...]

Wigan to reunite Owen and Heskey in January?

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According to a report from the Daily Star, Wigan could make an ambitious January bid for Michael Owen. Owen's future at Newcastle is up in the air right now, and if he rejects Newcastle's offer of a new contract, he could be sold in January so that Newcastle avoid losing him for nothing in [...]

Calling all Manchester United fans…

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Our favourite Manchester United blog, Red Rants, needs your help. If you can string together more than two coherent sentences and would like people to actually listen (read) with interest what you have to say about all things United, get started here. "Calling all Manchester United fans..." was originally published at Soccerlens.

Arsenal weigh up move for Dutch keeper Velthuizen

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According to the Daily Mirror, Arsenal are considering a £3m move for Vitessee Arnhem goalkeeper Piet Velthuizen. Velthuizen is a bright spot on one of the Eredivisie's bottom sides. He was in the Netherlands' Olympic squad in Beijing, and though he hasn't been capped by the senior team, he has already been called [.

Juventus eye summer moves for Liverpool duo

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According to the Daily Mirror, Juventus are eyeing a summer swoop for Liverpool duo Daniel Agger and Ryan Babel. Agger has recently been linked with AC Milan thanks to his ongoing contract stalemate with Liverpool, and the Rossoneri could face competition from one of their Serie A rivals for the Danish defender.

Can Sam Allardyce save Blackburn from relegation?

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Blackburn fans seem like a realistic lot (although I'm comparing them with Newcastle fans hence they seem downright rational), so I don't expect them to start thinking that Big Sam can lead them straight into the Champions League in the next couple of years or anything silly like that. The question is though, now that [.

FIFA Club World Cup: A Second Look

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The problem I fear with approaching any non-European competition as an an admitted a priori "avid PL supporter", as  does Mr. BD Condell in a prior piece posted on this site, is that one tends to be blinded by one's predispositions and miss what virtues there may be in such competitions.   While concurring in Soccerlens' correspondent  [.

Real Madrid Bid For Lassana Diarra Accepted

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Real Madrid have had a substantial bid accepted for the French defensive midfielder Lassana Diarra by Portsmouth but there has been conflicting reports on what the exact transfer fee is. According to The Sun, the fee is 24 million pounds while The Daily Mail insists that the amount paid by Real is 18 million pounds.

Leah Will Make You Flip

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She's one of the biggest celebrities in Brazil, despite the fact that she lives in America and can barely speak Portuguese.  She's a versatile defender and scorer, good enough to lead her school in scoring while holding down the left-back slot for the Brazilian Under-20 National Team.  Most notably, she's already considered one of the [.

Real Madrid Sign Lassana Diarra From Portsmouth

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Real Madrid have signed the French defensive midfielder Lassana Diarra from Portsmouth but there has been conflicting reports on what the exact transfer fee is. According to The Sun, the fee is 24 million pounds while The Daily Mail insists that the amount paid by Real is 18 million pounds. In any case, the amount is [.

Blyth battle through to face Blackburn

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One of non-league's most famous FA Cup names are at it again. Blyth Spartans have set up a dream third round tie against Blackburn Rovers after netting a last minute winner in their replay against AFC Bournemouth. Blyth, who play in a distinctive green and white striped strip, have great pedigree in this competition and in [.

Tears of Joy (Mexican League Apertura Final 2008)

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If you can't remember the last time you watched thousands of mature adults, on a day of deep blue skies and  blindingly bright high altitude winter sunshine, all weeping and singing at the same time, then you're like me.  And while you like me have probably read in the news lately that happiness has been [.

FIFA Club World Cup: If It Was a Horse They’d Shoot It!

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So let me guess, you're sitting on the edge of your seat, fidgeting nervously as you await the final stages of the FIFA Club World Cup (formerly known as the FIFA World Club Championship - World Cup has a better spin to it, don't you think?) to explode onto your screens and take you on [...]

Transfer Rumors (16 Dec 08): Pompey’s Diarra to Real, Bendtner to Inter, Arsenal eye Serie A duo, and more

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Tuesday wasn't a particularly busy day in transfer news and rumors, but the cupboard's not completely bare of speculation involving some of the top clubs and players around Europe. Benzema Dreams of Real Maybe Karim Benzema's mother thought it was cute when little Karim said that he'd play for Real Madrid one day, but now [.

Celtic star’s bustup with Strachan has Bayern and Newcastle on alert

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Could the latest turn in the rift between Celtic star Aiden McGeady and manager Gordon Strachan be the beginning of the end of McGeady's Celtic career? The 22-year old Ireland international has been suspended for two weeks without pay after a bust-up with Strachan after Saturday's 1-1 draw with Hearts.

Real Madrid to beat out Manchester City for Portsmouth’s Diarra

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According to a Daily Mail ‘exclusive,' Real Madrid are closing in on a £20m deal for Portsmouth midfielder Lassana Diarra, with the Frenchman expected to pen a four and a half year deal within the next couple of days. Real have already taken care of one need by signing Ajax striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, but [.

Inter looks to Arsenal’s Bendtner to bolster strikeforce in January

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Jose Mourinho could be looking to add a striker to his Inter squad in January, and his newest target, according to the Daily Mail, is Nicklas Bendtner? According to the report from the Mail, Mourinho has been impressed by Bendtner's strength and commitment. He likely won't be supplanting Zlatan Ibrahimovic anytime soon, but he's still [.

Ince gone, but the blame lies way over the Guv’nor’s head

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It would be easy to ignore Paul Ince's plight, very easy. After all, this is the man who posed in a Manchester United shirt long before his move to Old Trafford from West Ham was complete, this is the man who not only gave himself a nickname, also picked the most arrogant, and mildly pathetic [...]

US College Soccer At The Crossroads

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As the level of professional soccer in the US improves and financial interest increases, there's good reason to revisit the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) rules that restrict student soccer players from developing as fully as their foreign counterparts. Traditionally, US athletes are groomed in higher education to represent that value and prepare for post-sports [.

Karim Benzema: I Promised My Mom I would Play For Real Madrid

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Mommy's boy Olympique Lyon's star striker Karim Benzema might have pledged to stay with the current French champions this season but he's started work on his move for next summer already, with a style eerily familiar to whose who followed the Ronaldo saga earlier this year: Apparently Benzema's is to play for the mighty Real Madrid [.

Football Gifts - Buy Gifts For Football Fans

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Whether you're looking for advice on buying gifts for football fans or a list of great football gifts to buy, you've come to the right place. Read on for our tips on buying football gifts or jump down to our list of best football gifts (most are very affordable). Football Gift Buying Tips Set Your Budget: Gifts [.

Blackburn fire Ince / Who can save them from relegation this season?

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Premier League club Blackburn Rovers and manager Paul Ince have parted company. It has been revealed that the former England international striker has been 'relieved of his duties' at Blackburn Rovers. Blackburn Rovers chairman John Williams has declared on the club's official website: "Three wins in 17 games has seen a squad, which finished seventh last season, [.

Can Arsenal Lure Mexes And Pato To The Emirates? Bet A Million Dollars But They Won’t!

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Here is another transfer rumour story that is surely going to the bin before too long. It has been speculated by The People that Premier League club Arsenal are looking to land the Italian Serie A duo Philippe Mexes and Alexander Pato! It has been reported that Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is eager to sign AS [.

Newcastle Offer Michael Owen A 25K Pay-Cut Contract

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Newcastle United seem set to lose their skipper Michael Owen this season but have made one last attempt to keep him at St James' Park. British tabloid The Sun has reported that Mike Ashley has offered Owen a new contract worth £80,000 per week. Although the amount might appear quite a lot to many, it is [.

Stafford Rangers aren’t bullish about the future

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December isn't turning out to be a good month for managers who were international players. Keane quits Sunderland, Ince is under severe pressure at Blackburn and Steve Bull has been sacked as manager of Stafford Rangers. Granted, Bull might not quite be in the same class as Keane or Ince but it's an inglorious end to [.

How To Get Football Manager 2009 For Free

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Love Football Manager but haven't had the chance to play it? Or do you love it so much you want to give the gift of Football Manager (or curse, if you want your coworkers to stop working completely) to your friends? Next week, Soccerlens will pick one lucky SL reader to give away a FREE copy [...]

The Biggest Losers of 2008 - Real Madrid, Avram Grant, Juande Ramos, Arsenal and Mike Ashley

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While football success and failure is usually measured season to season, from August to May, the end of an year gives an opportunity to look back on the calender twelve months and see who we think has been worthy of appearing in this column. Here's a look at the teams and people who deserve to be [..

The Biggest Winners of 2008 - Cristiano Ronaldo, Barcelona, Lionel Messi, Fabio Capello and TSG Hoffenheim

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While football success and failure is usually measured season to season, from August to May, the end of an year gives an opportunity to look back on the calender twelve months and see who we think has been worthy of appearing in this column. Here's a look at the teams and people who deserve to be [..

Liverpool beware - Madrid make their first move on Rafa

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Real Madrid president Ramon Calderon has declared that he never intended to approach the Red's manager Rafael Benitez as their coach and that he does have faith in their new coach Juande Ramos, who was sacked by Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur earlier this season. Speaking on BBC Radio Five Live's 'Sportsweek', Calderon explained: "We want to [.

Bale to be makweight in Tottenham’s Downing swoop

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According to the Daily Mail, Middlesbrough are ready and willing to let Stewart Downing go to Tottenham, but it'll only be if they can get Gareth Bale in return. Boro have rebuffed all suitors and their attempts thus far, but they could finally be caving in if they get what they want. There's [...

Why Refs need our help / Liverpool and Arsenal should have lost / Chelsea and Fulham should have won

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It's been quite a weekend with many sets of fans left fuming at refereeing decisions going against their teams. The Right Result.net panel have been very busy looking at this weekend's fixtures. The independent panel have judged that seven of the games should have finished with a different score. These results mean its all change [.

Tottenham To Sign Liverpool’s Ryan Babel In January?

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If you are to trust the British tabloid The Daily Mirror, Premier League side Tottenham Hotspur are eager to sign Ryan Babel from Liverpool in January. The Dutch international winger-cum-striker is unhappy at Anfield as he has been denied as much playing time as he would like to get. In 19 appearances so far this season, [.

Aston Villa To Lose Ashley Young To The Mighty Real Madrid?

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This might as well be the creation of a very imaginative mind but there are reports circulating in the transfer market that Spanish and European powerhouse Real Madrid are eager to swoop on in Aston Villla's talented winger Ashley Young. That Real Madrid are desperate to add reinforcements to their injury-plagued squad is understandable and it [.

Manchester City Chasing David Bentley Now?

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Rarely a day goes by when you don't get to hear Premier League cash-packed Manchester City being not linked with a new footballer. Today it has been reported that the Eastlands club are eager to land the England international winger David Bentley from Tottenham Hotspur next month. The link arises due to the fact that Man City [.

Portsmouth Tag Diarra With €20 Million Price

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According to French publication L'Equipe, Premier League club Portsmouth have attached a price tag of €20 million on their holding midfielder Lassana Diarra. Reigning Spanish champions and European giants Real Madrid have already declared their interest in the Frenchman and Portsmouth have seemingly agreed to sell the player for the right price, which now seems to [.

Why The SPL Is Falling Behind Europe

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Recently, I was watching the Ajax vs. Utrecht game on Setanta and as I cast my eye over the Ajax team, I noticed that the commentators were raving about a particular Uruguayan prospect by the name of Luis Suarez. As a loyal viewer of 'Eurogoals' and a casual Ajax fan, I am no stranger to [...]

Roberto Mancini Lining Himself Up For Sunderland Job?

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On Sunday it emerged that the recently sacked Real Madrid coach Bernd Schuster was more than just eager to become the new manager of struggling Premier League club Sunderland. And today it has been reported that another high-profile coach is also interested in managing the Black Cats. According to The Daily Mirror, former Inter Milan coach [.

Important Dates, Newcastle’s New Sugar Daddy, New CL Format and more

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Monday, 15th December, 2008. Possibly the most important day of this month, considering that we've announced the winners of the 2008 Soccerlens awards today. Other important dates of the year include the annual release of the Gemma Atkinson calendar, Soccerlens' birthday, April 1st, the last day of the transfer season and .

The indispensable Wayne Rooney

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Manchester United's nil-nil draws are starting to become a bit of a trademark of the team. The more experienced fan can now look at the first five minutes of any Manchester United game and be able to foresee if the team will struggle. The characteristics of these games are unmistakable; the players cannot string two [.

Transfer Rumors (14 December 2008) - Arsenal Spending Spree, Gary and Phil Neville Together Again, Owen to Spurs, and more!

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Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend.  We have a lot of juicy bits to get to, including an unlikely career resurrection,  an even more unlikely spending spree, and a family reunion you thought you would see when Hell froze over. Arsenal to Go on Spending Spree? The idea of Arsene Wenger spending big is about as foreign [.

Tottenham Hunting Michael Owen And Joe Cole

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Thanks to the British tabloid the News of the World, we now know all about Tottenham Hotspur's crush on England internationals Owen and Cole. According to the notorious tabloid, revived (well, sort of revived) Premier League side Tottenham are eager to reinforce their attackline in January by signing England internationals Michael Owen and Joe Cole from [.

Didier Drogba: I Am Staying At Chelsea Beyond January

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Chelsea striker Didier Drogba has declared that he shall stay on at Stamford Bridge beyond January but has refused to confirm whether he shall play for the Blues beyond the summer. The Ivory Coast international striker has been quoted by The Daily Mirror as saying that he never even contemplated of leaving the club in January.

Tottenham’s Roman Pavlyuchenko On Real Madrid’s Radar

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Tottenham Hotspur might be on the up again under new manager Harry Redknapp but old boss Juande Ramos is eager to unsettle the balance as he is reportedly looking to sign Spurs' Russian star Roman Pavlyuchenko (and a number of others as has already been reported). And what's more, the Russian international striker himself is eager [.

Niko Kranjcar: I Am Not Leaving Portsmouth for Arsenal

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Portsmouth fans can now heave a huge sigh of relief. Star midfielder Niko Kranjcar has declared that he shall not leave Fratton Park in January. There has been some speculation on the player's future after it was reported that Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger wanted to sign the player and was willing to pay as much as [.

No Case For Rangers’ Defence

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On the back of yet more points dropped away from home (and we mock Celtic for their away record), our defence once again comes under scrutiny. Two ridiculous goals lost because of some quite awful defending. It seems that we can no longer handle balls into the box. Our once impressive backline buckles at anything [.

Bernd Schuster To Become New Sunderland Manager?

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According to The Sunday Telegraph, sacked Real Madrid coach Bernd Schuster is eager to become the new manager of the Premier League club Sunderland. Schuster was sacked by Real Madrid last week after a series of dismal performances by the reigning Spanish champions. He was given the green signal to leave the Bernabeu on Tuesday and [.

The Scout: Ten Prospects from the Allsvenskan

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Sweden has long been fertile ground for some of the world's largest clubs as well as many of the upper-tier leagues.  And these ten teenagers have many of the attributes and tools that the clubs look for when scouring the globe.  Will one of these ten emerge to become a global star?  From here on out it has [.

Transfer Rumors (13 December 2008) - Drogba Going Nowhere, Manchester United Defender Gets New Contract, Spurs Want £20 for Lennon, and More!

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Eddie's out of town for the weekend, so you guys are stuck with me! Let's get to the latest batch of transfer rumors. No Loaner for Alex Chelsea have rejected a proposed loan deal for their defender, Alex, to PSV Eindhoven. Alex was reported to have formally requested a transfer earlier this week, [.

Burnley’s Jay Rodriguez: A future Premier League Striker?

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The game was heading for extra time, neither side able to break the deadlock, but on 87 minutes Burnley's 19 year old striker collected a through ball that found him facing Fulham's Swiss goalkeeper Pascal Zuberbuhler. Showing maturity far beyond his years, he went round the Swiss World Cup stopper with a feint that made [.

Harry Redknapp Dismisses Roman Pavlyuchenko Exit Fears

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Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp has dismissed all press reports suggesting that Russian international striker Roman Pavlyuchenko was on the club's want-away list, insisting that the player was very much in his plans. The 13 million pound signing from Spartak Mowcow has been in indifferent form since his arrival at White Hart Lane and there has [.

Manchester City’s David Villa Hopes Go Down The Drain

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Poor old Manchester City have had humble pie thrown in their filthy rich faces once again! Spanish club Valencia have declared that they shall not be selling David Villa (and David Silva) in January. There has been much speculation on the future of Valencia's prized assets, namely Villa and Silva, as Los Che are reportedly steeped [.

Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic To Move To Inter Milan?

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According to Novantesimo.it, reigning Italian champions Inter Milan could sign Serbian defender Branislav Ivanovic as early as January. There has been speculation on Ivanovic for several weeks now as it has emerged that the Serbian international defender would like to try himself at a club other than Chelsea.

Daniel Agger To Move Out Of Anfield?

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Uncertainties over the future of Liverpool defender Daniel Agger continue to intensify as it has once again emerged that the player could be heading for the Anfield exit door next month. Agger's agent Pef Steffensen exclusively told Goal.com earlier this week that Agger might decide to move on in January although he did point out that [.

Tottenham To Lose Gomes To His Old Club?

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According to Eindhovens Dagblad, Tottenham Hotspur custodian Heurelho Gomes is seemingly interested in moving back to his old club PSV Eindhoven in the Netherlands. Gomes was signed by Spurs in the summer for 10 million euros but the Brazilian goalkeeper has failed to settle at White Hart Lane, leading Spurs fans to call for someone more [.

Fergie shoots down Tottenham’s chances of permanent deal for Campbell

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Tottenham's hopes of swinging a permanent deal for on-loan striker Fraizer Campbell have been dealt a big blow, as Sir Alex Ferguson has said he does intend to bring him back to Manchester United next summer. Campbell has impressed at Tottenham since moving to the club as part of Dimitar Berbatov's 30.

Gary Neville: Career On The Brink

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It was the 17th of March 2007 and Gary Neville was heading towards his 7th Premiership title with Manchester United, his only club. At 32 years of age he was captain and, no doubt, looking forward to another 3 or 4 years at the top before deciding what course to take in life after football. United [.

Tottenham’s Realism Could See Them Hit Their Dream Heights

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A sense of realism and admittance of mistakes by the Tottenham board in October has lead to the most inspired move by them since the appointment of Bill Nicholson. After eight games and sixteen points into his reign as Tottenham manager, the appointment of Harry Redknapp is fast becoming the signing of the decade let [.

Transfer Rumors (12 Dec 08): Real like Boro’s Johnson, Chelsea’s Tuncay hopes shot down, Gallas and Bendtner out at Arsenal, and more

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What, we've made it through another week already? There are only three more weeks to go before the winter transfer window madness begins. Who's being linked with January moves today? Well, read on to find out. Real Madrid Tracking Boro's Johnson Could Juande Ramos bring a few good Englishmen to Madrid?

Kris Boyd and Rangers: Its Time For Faith

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Since his move to Rangers Kris Boyd has been the subject of much divisive debate amongst Bears - a player with an uncanny knack of putting the ball in the net, whilst at the same time not renown for his work rate outside the box. I sometimes wonder if we are judging Kris Boyd wrongly. His [...]

Asia opens doors for English Premier League and Game 39

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How times change. At the start of 2008, the footballing world rose in anger against an idea dubbed 'Game 39'. It would ruin the sanctity of English football, it would cause England their chance to host the World Cup, it would be hurt football in other countries and all the associated arguments. Fast forward to the [.

Tottenham v Manchester United, EPL going to Asia, Worst January Transfers, Holly Huddleston and more

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Today's roundup is brought to you by Holly Huddleston the underage beauty gracing the latest issue of FHM: Asia is happy to take Premier League money - I wonder why they waited so long to come around. Popular news site Goal.com don't know whether to take themselves seriously or not - until they decide, they're not going [.

How Argentina plans to stop its players from cheating

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The Argentine Football Association is set to use an 'aerosol spray' to mark a temporary 10-yard line away from free kicks to prevent defenders from encroaching upon the free kick taker. What would really make this interesting is if they used sleeping gas (in very minute quantities) in the white mist, so that any player who [.

Portsmouth’s Diarra set for 18m move to Manchester City?

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According to the Daily Mirror, Portsmouth midfielder Lassana Diarra is set for an £18m January move to Manchester City. Diarra is currently laid up with an ankle injury, but he could be set to make a return to the squad next weekend when Pompey face Bolton. However, it could be one of his [...]

Goal.com are very confused…

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Goal.com took great pride in its 'exclusive' with Gigi Buffon's agent which effectively trashed the British tabloid Daily Mail (deserved, of course). This is the same Goal.com that picks up news from these tabloids and spins it as it's own transfer stories, the same Goal.com that publishes news stories without considering whether they are authentic [.

Real Madrid after Boro starlet Johnson

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According to the Daily Mail, Real Madrid are hot on the trail of Middlesbrough's young winger Adam Johnson. With former Tottenham boss Juande Ramos taking over at the club this week, Real could be looking to add a few faces that Ramos is familiar with from his time in the Premier League. He's [...

AC Milan beat out rivals to sign Brazilian defender Thiago Silva

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AC Milan are set to beat out the likes of Chelsea and Inter Milan '. The 24-year old Brazilian center back is set to undergo a medical and pen a deal with his new club next week, according to his agent Paulo Tonieto and AC Milan's Adriano Galliani. Silva, who has two caps [...]

Is Negative Football The Future?

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You would think that having a season ticket at Old Trafford would mean seeing exciting matches every week. When clubs come to our ground, we mockingly sing about it being their cup final (don't dismiss that as arrogance, it is as much as response of frustration at being told none of us are from Manchester!

Do Manchester United want Real Madrid in the Champions League?

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My, my. I note today that Sir Alex, with typically shrewd and devious application of more torque than a spin-bowler's or curveball pitcher's, has said that a draw with Real would be "a nice party tea and biscuits with Ramon Calderon." Now does that mean he does or doesn't desire such a draw? [...]

Rafa’s Masterplan for Liverpool this January

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Liverpool, whilst sitting on top of the Premier League, have yet to convince me that they can go all the way this season. Yes, they have got the results, but not very convincingly. Goals are starting to become hard to find, and as we saw in the West Ham match, without talisman Fernando Torres, Liverpool [.

Will Manchester United sign Xavi and sell Tevez in January?

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It is quite simple for the men from the red side of Manchester, play to your potential and you don't need to buy anyone. Whilst it is easier said than done, the roster Manchester United has is one that almost every club in the world is envious of. To think of a team where players [...]

Barcelona v Real Madrid - El Classico Preview

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Well, they did say a week is a long time in football. How relevant that statement is for Real Madrid. After losing 3-4 at home to a Sevilla comprehensively dismantled by Barcelona the week before, and the manager Bernd Schuster intent on relieving himself of his duties by claiming there is no hope of even [.

Do Manchester City fans know what their team will look like after January?

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The sky blues declared themselves European contenders in the summer after their Abu Dhabi takeover, most notably by the huge last-minute signing of Robinho. However, their potential hasn't been completely evident so far and they sit fifteenth in the Premier League, the owners aren't happy. They have compiled good and poor results in a topsy-turvy [.

Gareth Southgate: Tuncay To Chelsea? No Chance!

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Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate has resolutely dismissed all claims that star striker Tuncay Sanli was on his way to fellow Premier League side Chelsea. Recent media reports had suggested that Chelsea manager Luis Felipe Scolari, who has been clamouring for a striker this season to provide back-up to Nicolas Anelka and Didier Drogba, was trying to [.

Manchester United Sign Serbian Starlets Tosic And Ljajic

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Reigning Premier League and European champions Manchester United have now fattened their squad by two more members after signing- well, almost signing- two Serbian starlets. Manchester United's Serbian defender Nemanja Vidic would have some task in the next few months to see that his compatriot Zoran Tosic settles smoothly in England.

West Ham’s Di Michele To Return To Torino?

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West Ham United's Italian striker David Di Michele could make a swift return to Torino next month if the Premier League side are ready to let him go. Di Michele was signed by the Hammers last summer on a loan deal from Torino after he fell out with the then Torino coach Gianni De Biasi. At [...]

Sevilla Throw Humble Pie On Man City’s Luis Fabiano Swoop

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Sevilla president Jose Maria del Nido has said in no uncertain terms that they are not willing to sell their star striker Luis Fabiano to Manchester City in January. Manchester City have been linked with a number of top draw players and were recently linked with bids for Sevilla's Brazilian international striker Luis Fabiano.

Arsenal To Throw Out Gallas & Bendtner In January?

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If a report on The Times is to be trusted, then Premier League giants Arsenal are more than just willing to let go of defender William Gallas and striker Nicklas Bendtner as early as January. It has been reported that Gallas and Bendtner are the two black sheep in the Arsenal dressing room and that club [.

The Non-Style of US Soccer

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It is understandable that each country has its own style of play, from the hackneyed description of the Brazilians' samba, to the Italians' (dolt-headed) defense-minded catenaccio, it's an interesting combination of anthropology, geography, and political evolution that created these approaches to The Game.

Tottenham v. Manchester United - English Premier League - 13 December 2008 - Live Blog

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Tottenham v. Manchester United Stadium: White Hart Lane, England Competition: English Premier League Date: 13 December 2008 Kickoff: 17:30 GMT, 12:30 ET Tottenham Hotspur will entertain Manchester United in what could be an early preview of the Carling Cup Final. Soccerlens will be bringing you the action live!

Who should Hull City buy and sell in January?

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It is more than fair to say that new boys in town Hull City have been the surprise package this season. A 2-1 win at Arsenal and a spirited 4-3 loss at Manchester United have been performances that caught everyone unexpected of the talent in this side. The fans are happy, the board is happy [...]

One In, One Out - Aston Villa’s January Transfers

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The Villains have been a talking point this season with a number of eye catching performances, most notably their 2-0 victory at Arsenal. They weren't that impressive at the start of the season, but have notched up some consistent performances of late and sit one point out of the top four. But what is lacking [.

Ins and Outs at Chelsea this January

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This may be to first season for a while now that Chelsea really does not need to look into the January transfer market. With ‘Big Phil's' bunch only suffering their second defeat of the Premier League at the hands of the Gunners, there is no real reason to expand an already composed squad, with CEO [.

One in, One out - Arsenal plan January strategy

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Arsenal are a team that has been playing well on the big occasions, but faltering elsewhere. The patriotic fans of the Emirates Stadium have been crying, yearning and begging for a big money transfer from Mr. Wenger. But it has fallen on deaf ears. Wenger has said that his ‘youth policy' will carry the team [.

Transfer Rumors (11 Dec 08): City prepare Torres bid, Serb duo in Manchester, Zaki staying at Wigan, and more

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It's a lot more exciting on my end when there's plenty to report to you from the transfer gossip pages, and that's the case today. Let's get on with it, shall we? Manchester City to Make 50m Torres Bid? Regardless of the fact that Liverpool don't want to sell Fernando Torres no matter what is thrown [.

Bellamy to make triumphant Celtic return in January?

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According to The Sun, Celtic could be set to make a £5m bid for West Ham striker Craig Bellamy in January. Bellamy is just one of many West Ham players linked with moves away from Upton Park, with the club's current struggles. Yesterday, I reported on Tottenham's apparent interest in a double swoop [.

Fiorentina manager won’t block Pazzini’s West Ham move - if they’re interested

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Fiorentina manager Cesare Prandelli has said that he won't stand in the way of striker Giampaolo Pazzini moving to West Ham if the opportunity arose. The 24-year old Pazzini has recently been linked with West Ham, and while Prandelli would like him to stay, he knows there's only so much he can do about [.

Bruce adamant about keeping in-demand Zaki

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Wigan manager Steve Bruce says that on-loan striker Amr Zaki won't be going anywhere in January, despite interest from Chelsea and some of Europe's other top clubs. Zaki has been out recently with a hamstring injury, but his pre-injury form has seen the Egyptian hit-man linked with Chelsea, Liverpool, Real Madrid, and Manchester City.

Walter Smith Seesaw

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Last week it was 2-1 to Hearts, this week it is 7-1 to Rangers. Last week the Rangers fans were in outrage over the manner in which we lost, the same place we won 4-0 last season. The cries came from everywhere; "Walter, your time is up!" and "Take McCoist and McDowall with you!". It [...]

Liverpool’s Agger To AC Milan? Who Knows….?

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In a exclusive interview with Goal.com, Liverpool defender Daniel Agger's agent Per Steffensen has denied to make any comment on whether the Danish defender shall move to AC Milan or not. It has been persistently reported that Agger was on the radar of Italian powerhouse AC Milan but the Italian side have officially denied the claim [.

Alex: I Want To Leave Chelsea

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In a classic case of unambiguous come-and-get-me-plea, Chelsea defender Alex has declared that he has no intention of carrying on at the Stamford Bridge under the existing circumstances when he is not guaranteed a starting berth in the team. Speaking to the British tabloid The Sun, the 26-year old Brazilian international defender said: "I told Chelsea a [.

Rooney’s a brute, French referee can’t decide; but is it news?

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Wayne Rooney took out his frustration with male pattern baldness on CL opponents Aalborg, especially Kasper Risgard, on Wednesday night. Referee Laurent Duhamel of France took no action because he was apparently unable to determine if a red card would clash with WR's jersey. But is this news to anyone?

Manchester City Back On Torres Hunt? Oh, Come On…..

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Premier League club Manchester City are hardly out of the transfer news these days and today again is no different. This time, according to the British tabloid The Daily Mirror, the Eastlands club are preparing a £50 million record breaking bid for Liverpool hitman Fernando Torres. Man City have been linked with a number of world [.

Manchester United Still In Contract Talks With Carlos Tevez

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All fans of Carlos Tevez and reigning Premier League and European champions Manchester United can now heave a huge sigh of relief. United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has declared that contract talks with the Argentine international striker are currently in motion. Tevez is actually on loan from MSI for until the end of the season and [.

Paranoid Paul Ince has lost the plot

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If you choose to believe our friends in the tabloid press, Paul Ince will be collecting his P45 at Ewood Park at some point today. Incey's guided his team into the bottom three and whether or not he gets the boot before Rovers' next game against Wigan on Saturday, the vultures are definitely circling.

Fabregas’ comments are proof that Wenger needs to gag Arsenal players

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Arsenal skipper and star Cesc Fabregas has reiterated his desire to play in La Liga someday, leading to more speculation on his future. Fabregas has been quoted by Radio Marca as saying that he would like to play in his native country sometime in his career. Fabregas currently has still six years left on his long [.

Who should lead the Chelsea frontline - Didier Drogba or Nicolas Anelka?

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Whether it's in muddy parks every Sunday afternoon or on the pristine turf of the Premier League you always get big-game strikers and big-match chokers. The ‘chokers' aren't bad players (as they normally score a hatful against the lesser sides) but they tend to go missing when things are tight and when you need them most.

Champions League 2nd Round Draw - Who do you want your team to face?

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The 08-09 Champions League group stages are over with the usual suspects sneaking through (what will happen when an English club doesn't make it through to the group stages one year? mass media suicide, I expect, or rather hope...) from England and Europe. 16 teams, 8 second-round matches, can't face your group-mate, a team from your [.

Dominating Babes in US, Crew Cuts One

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The US national program continued to dominate women's international cup championships barring the last 2 Women's World Cups taking the U-20 World Cup title, 2-1 over Korea DPR last Sunday in Santiago, Chile. The team was led by Sydney Leroux a cute Canadian possessed of one of the many FIFA exceptions that allows her to play for more than [.

Transfer Rumors (10 Dec 08): AC Milan want Agger, Tuncay to Chelsea, Ramos in Tottenham raid, and more

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It's a relatively quiet day in the transfer pages, but we have managed to scoop up more than enough spec for you to sift through. AC Milan Confirm Interest in Liverpool's Agger Subhankar speculated yesterday that AC Milan's mystery defender target could be William Gallas, and while he may be a target for the Rossoneri, [.

Bolton to make bid for highly-rated Wolves winger Kightly

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Bolton are interested in making a January move for Wolves winger Michael Kightly, according to the Daily Mirror. The 22-year old Kightly is quite the success story. The former Tottenham trainee didn't make much of an impact at Southend, but since a move to Conference side Grays in 2005, it‘s been a meteoric [.

Everton add Zenit’s Pogrebnyak to list of January strike targets

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Russian striker Pavel Pogrebnyak has emerged as a potential January target for Everton, according to the Zenit St. Petersburg star's agent. Andrei Arshavin has been the headline grabber for Zenit, but Pogrebnyak's worthy of his share of plaudits. The 25-year old was joint top scorer in the 2007/08 UEFA Cup with 10 goals, [.

Not much to celebrate for Premier League managers

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Managers have such little time in the Premiership these days and it seems crazy that two managers, new to the top league, are fighting for their jobs by Christmas. Paul Ince and Gianfranco Zola were given a chance to manage in the Premiership by Blackburn and West Ham, but it seems that less than halfway through [.

Redknapp to raid former club for English duo in January

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According to the Daily Mail, Tottenham are planning a January raid of crisis club West Ham, with a £16m double deal for goalkeeper Robert Green and defender Matthew Upson in the cards. The Hammers are struggling on the pitch, with only one in their last 10 Premier League games, and they're also in the [.

Weak Arsenal Need Rangers’ Ferguson

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Arsene Wenger may know his tactics, and his scouting system is second to none, but there's one aspect of English football that has bypassed this most studious of managers. Down the years, successful teams have had a backbone of moany, whiny, niggly midfielders. Small of stature and pale of skin, they were easily identified by an [.

Rafael Benitez Signs New Liverpool Deal At Long, Long Last

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Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez seems to have eventually signed a long awaited new contract, if The Times is to be trusted. It has been reported by the London paper that the Spaniard has ultimately reached an agreement with his American co-owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett over a new contract. The deal is said to run [.

Chelsea To Sign Middlesbrough’s Tuncay?

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Premier League giants Chelsea seem to have made Middlesbrough striker Tuncay Sanli their top target for January as manager Luiz Felipe Scolari seems to be eager to sign a striker next month. According to The Daily Mail, Chelsea are ready to spend as much as £8 million to sign the French striker who arrived at Middlesbrough [.

Wigan To Sign Nicky Butt From Newcastle?

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According to the British tabloid The Sun, Wigan Athletic are eager to sign midfielder Nicky Butt from Newcastle United in January and are preparing a bid for the former Manchester United player. Nicky Butt's contract with Newcastle expires in the summer and it is highly unlikely that he shall stay with the Magpies beyond the summer.

Ronaldo Signs For Brazilian Club Corinthians

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Brazilian legend and three times former FIFA World Player of the Year Ronaldo has decided to join Brazilian club Corinthians on a one-year contract. It has been confirmed that the much injury-troubled Brazilian striker shall continue his career in Brazil. He has been out of all footballing action since February 2008 when he once again damaged [.

New Real Madrid Coach Juande Ramos To Ransack Former Club Spurs?

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According to the The Daily Star, newly appointed Real Madrid coach Juande Ramos is looking forward to ransacking his former side Tottenham Hotspur this January as he is allegedly interested in signing youngsters David Bentley and Aaron Lennon. Ramos was sacked by Tottenham Hotspur earlier in the season and was appointed the new coach of Spanish [.

Funny Football Club Names

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Most of us would swear we were watching 11 Wankas wandering around the park on a Saturday, but for fans of the world's best known funny named team that definitely is the case. Peru's Deportivo Wanka have developed a cult following, and some not unwelcome UK merchandise sales, on the basis of their name.

Funny Football Player Names

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The summer of 1996. Football had come home, optimism was high. Terry Venables and his squad united the English public but as per usual it all petered out against the Germans. Gareth Southgate's missed penalty broke the hearts of a nation, and yet it was all a bit more bearable because Germany had a player [.

The French Connection: Georgia, Gabon & Giresse

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In the spring of 2008, the Georgian National Investment Agency (GNIA) ran a series of short promotional films across the major international news networks promoting the country as an attractive destination for foreign capital. The most notable of these featured an American reporter inside Dinamo Tbilisi's Boris Paichadze Stadium breathlessly drawing our attention to the [.

Arsenal can’t spend, Liverpool smell conspiracies, somersault throwins and more

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Today's roundup is brought to you by the funkiest football shoes known to man. Before we start, some perspective - all football rankings are bunk. Some are just better explained than others, but in essence it's just bullshit. All that counts is how much fun you can have in taunting your opponents after beating them senseless [.

Rafael Benitez: Robbie Keane Will NOT Leave Liverpool For Tottenham!

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Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez has dismissed all transfer reports suggesting that they were contemplating selling striker Robbie Keane to fellow Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur in January. Keane was signed by Liverpool from Tottenham in the summer of 2008 for 20 million pounds and was expected to be a very crucial player for the Merseyside club.

Rafael Benitez To Swap Liverpool With Juventus?

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According to the British tabloid News of the World, Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez could be heading to Italy to take charge of the Italian and European giants Juventus. The Spaniard has recently snubbed an improved new contract at Liverpool and it is being said that Benitez did so to make himself available for other major European [.

Manchester City Now Hunting Inter Milan’s Esteban Cambiasso

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Premier League club Manchester City have been linked with a number of top draw players since they were taken over by the filthy rich Abu Dhabi-based ADUG and it appears that they are ready to intrude into Italy. According to the British tabloid The Daily Mail, the Eastlands club are contemplating placing a whooping €17 million [.

Milan Confirm To Sign Defender In January…..Is It William Gallas?

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Italian and European powerhouse AC Milan have admitted that they are looking forward to signing a defender in January to compensate for the injuries they have sustained in their defensive department this season. Milan vice-president Adriano Galliani has been quoted by the Italian sports daily Gazzetta dello Sport as saying: "It would be difficult to live with [.

Real Madrid Sack Coach Bernd Schuster! Is Juande Ramos In?

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Reigning Spanish champions Real Madrid have sacked Bernd Schuster as their coach, according to latest reports emerging from Spain. It has been reported that after a series of meetings on Tuesday morning, the Real Madrid hierarchy came to a conclusion to sack the German. This comes after a run of poor results and the German uttering [.

Transfer Rumors (8 Dec 08): Benzema to Man United, Alonso to Arsenal, Owen to Chelsea, and more

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It's a new week, and there's a wealth of transfer news and rumors to run through as we get a new week started. Manchester United in Pole Position for Benzema? Will Manchester United be the team to beat for Karim Benzema's signature? They just might be, but it will hinge on their decision regarding Carlos [.

Keane or Crouch for Tottenham in January?

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Yesterday, I reported that Tottenham could be set to make a January move to bring Robbie Keane back to White Hart Lane. Today, there are conflicting reports about whether it's Keane that Harry Redknapp wants to bolster his strike force in January, or if it's another striker with Tottenham and Liverpool ties.

Manchester United lead race for Benzema

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According to the Manchester Evening News, Manchester United are the favorites to sign Karim Benzema. Call it simple process of elimination more than breaking news, but here goes. Real Madrid, the club that the Lyon star has been a fan of since childhood, would appear to be out of the race for the [.

Liverpool midfielder still in Arsenal’s sights

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Arsenal are still interested in Liverpool midfielder Xabi Alonso, according to the Daily Mirror. The Gunners, along with Juventus, were linked with the Spanish midfielder in the summer, when it looked like he'd be sold to make way for Aston Villa's Gareth Barry. However, Alonso has not only stayed at Anfield, but he‘s [.

Diego Dismissed Juventus And Real Madrid Interest As Mere Speculation

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Werder Bremen star midfielder Diego has dismissed reports of him leaving the German Bundesliga club anytime soon as mere speculation. In an exclusive interview with Goal.com, the Brazilian international has said that he is very happy playing in the German Bundesliga. The former teammate of Robinho at Santos insists that he is very delighted to play [.

Sam Allardyce Raises His Hand For The Sunderland Job

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The much respected Sam Allardyce has acknowledged that he would be eager to become the new manager of the Premier League club Sunderland. Big Sam has been quoted as saying that he would love to coach Sundaerland as they are a big club. He said: "Sunderland are a great club so of course I'd be interested in [.

Managerial Merry-Go-Round is Madness

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Team lost a couple of games in a row? Sack the manager. Team five places in the league below where you'd like them to be? Sack the manager. Couple of expensive signings have a bit of a whinge? Sack the manager. I'm not saying that it's always wrong to change the man at the top, [...]

Arsenal slip out of the top 4

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Arsenal appear to be getting their Premier League season back on track, but not in the world of the Right Result. For the second week in a row, the Gunners have had a win turned into a draw due to RR decisions. This week, Wigan Athletic should have taken a point from their trip to the Emirates [...]

Arsene Wenger On His Side Of The Cristiano Ronaldo Miss

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On Friday, we reported Cristiano Ronaldo's frank confession of how he came close to signing for Arsenal instead of their Premier League rivals Manchester United in 2003. We now have Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger's side of the story. The French professor too has let the cat slip out of the bag and told The Guardian: "I had [.

Newcastle Manager Joe Kinnear Reveals His January Targets

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Premier League club Newcastle United might still be struggling both on the pitch and off it but it appears that club manager Joe Kinnear has already made it certain who he is going to sign in January. Kinnear has declared in The People that he shall sign two non-Premier League defenders as he feels, and feels [.

Real Madrid Make A Shortlist Of Wingers…..How Many? Well…..15!

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If AS are to be trusted, and on most occasions they are not, then Spanish champions and European powerhouse Real Madrid have made a 'shortlist' of 15 wingers out of whom they would like to sign (at least) one during January. The Spanish tabloid has reported that Real's Pedja Mijatovic and Miguel Ángel Portugal held a [.

Darren Anderton: The end of an era

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The scoreline popped up upon the Sky Sports goal ticker, much like any other goal that day. Except "Bournemouth 1 Chester 0 D Anderton 88″ wasn't just any goal. It was a fairytale ending to an illustrious career in English football. Darren Anderton's last goal in his last ever game in football was a classic goal, [.

Brighton dream finally becomes a reality

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The 24th of July, 2007. A day that will go down in folklore for Brighton fans, as it marks the day that planning permission for their new home in Falmer, East Sussex was finally granted, after over ten years of temporary homes. Finally, Brighton have the luxury of home comforts, the luxury of a stadium to [.

Stewart Downing: I’m Not Leaving Middlesbrough for Tottenham

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Middlesbrough midfielder Stewart Downing has dismissed all rumours linking him with a January move from the Riverside, insisting that he wants to play for Boro. The 24-year old has been linked with a January move to either Tottenham Hotpur or Aston Villa as he is still said to be looking to sign for a bigger club.

World Football Quotes of the Year - 2008

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Fifty of the most notable football quotes from the year 2008 - also see last year's quotes. 1. "My reputation will always precede me until the day I die. For some people that probably can't come quickly enough." Joey Barton of Newcastle United. "Tell the truth, and shame the devil," Mr. Barton. 2. "He not only let the [.

Kaka Unhappy, Manchester United Midfielder to Inter Milan, Real Madrid Rule Out Move for Striker, and more

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Anderson Wants to Move to Inter Milan Manchester United midfielder Anderson has revealed that he dreams of moving to Inter Milan and playing for Jose Mourinho. Analysis: First it was Real Madrid, and now it looks like Inter Milan is developing into Sir Alex Ferguson's nemesis. Anderson hasn't gotten the kind of playing [.

Spurs set to tie up Downing in 12m deal?

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According to the Daily Mail, Tottenham are set to sign Middlesbrough's Stewart Downing in a £12m deal. Downing has been linked with an exit at Boro time and time again over the last few years, with Tottenham mentioned as a prime destination much of the time. Aston Villa have also been linked recently [.

Manchester City to tie up record Villa deal this week

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According to the News of the World, Manchester City could be on their way to wrapping up a world-record £52m deal for Valencia striker David Villa. The report says that Villa's agent is set to fly into Manchester on Tuesday to discuss a deal, and that if all goes well, a deal could be [...]

Tottenham to buy back old boy Keane in January?

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Could Robbie Keane be on his way back to Tottenham only months after leaving the club for greener pastures? According to the ever-reliable News of the World, Harry Redknapp could be set to make a bid for the Irishman, who has been a big disappointment since his dream move to Anfield. Keane has scored [.

The Scout: 8 Promising Youngsters from the Serbian Superliga

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Serbian Zoran Tošić is set to leave FK Partizan in January and join global giant Manchester United after Sir Alex Ferguson personally advocated for the approval of the 21-year-old winger's work permit.  "I was told that about 10 days ago that Manchester had sent a request for my work permit which is now granted,"  Tošić noted to [.

Transfer Rumors (5 Dec 08): Essien and Heskey going nowhere, Ledley to Fulham, and more

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We're at the end of another week, which means we're all the more closer to the end of the year and the start of a new year and the winter transfer window. What players are in the news today? I've got a sextet of rumors for you to feast on, so let's get started, [...]

Fulham could join Arsenal in race for Cardiff midfielder

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Cardiff sent one of their brightest talents to London in the summer when the Bluebirds sold Aaron Ramsey to Arsenal, and another of their top players could be on his way to London in January, as Fulham could make a January move for midfielder/left winger Joe Ledley. The 21-year old has been a [...

No Inter move for Essien, says Scolari

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Jose Mourinho won't be able to do any poaching of at least one of his former Chelsea players, as Luiz Felipe Scolari says that Inter or anyone else won't get their hands on Michael Essien. Essien's Ghanaian compatriot Sulley Muntari left Portsmouth for Inter in the summer, and he wants Essien to join him in Milan, [.

Juventus To Manchester City: Buffon Is Not For Sale

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Italian powerhouse Juventus have once again insisted that their star goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon is not up for sale. This comes as rumours of Premier League club Manchester City gunning to sign the Italian international custodian pick up pace. Sporting director Alessio Secco has told Turin-based sports paper Tuttosport that Buffon is not going to Juventus.

Andrei Arshavin To Either Premier League, La Liga Or Serie A

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An exclusive Goal.com report states that Russian hotshot Andrei Arshavin is set to sign for a top club in either the Premier League, La Liga or the Italian Serie A in January. Andrei Arshavin's representative Dennis Lachter has been quoted as saying that his client would like to play in either England, Spain or Italy.

Wigan won’t sacrifice survival to cash in on Heskey

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Wigan may not sell Emile Heskey in January, and if they do, it'll have to be an ‘outrageous' offer, according to Wigan manager Steve Bruce. Heskey has been linked with the likes of Liverpool, Aston Villa, and Manchester City recently, and Wigan chairman Dave Whelan has said that he'd rather sell him in January [.

Ronaldo: I Almost Signed For Arsenal. Mum: He Could Have Been A Druggie!

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Manchester United star midfielder and newly crowned European Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo has admitted that he was on the brink of signing for Premier League club Arsenal in 2003. The 23-year old Portuguese international winger has confirmed that in 2003, when he signed for Arsenal's Premier League rivals, Man United, he was actually contemplating [.

Football to Abramovich - only points win titles

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What would fans prefer to see and pay to watch: entertaining, attacking football which might result in their team losing the odd game, or a defensive, effective game that brings trophies and titles? Chelsea seem to be struggling with this dilemma this season. Jose Mourinho was delivering titles and trophies to Stamford Bridge but Roman Abramovich [.

Bayern Munich v TSG Hoffenheim: Old Money vs New Cash

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Bayern Munich take on TSG Hoffenheim in the most anticipated game in the Bundesliga this season. Soccerlens takes a closer look at who will come out on top. The German tabloids must be thanking Dietmar Hopp and the Lord (in that order, precisely) for handing them at least one week's headlines on a golden plate.

Ronaldo Award Exposes The Bias In Ballon d’Or

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Sir Alex Ferguson today spoke of his pride in Cristiano Ronaldo for winning Ballon d'Or, which crowns him as the best player in Europe. Of course, it could have been a very different story had Ronaldo pushed for a move to Real Madrid in the summer, where he would have likely still won the award [...]

Chelsea to Buy Silva and Sell Kalou, Spurs and Villa Want West Ham Striker, Shevchenko on the Move Again, and more!

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Obviously, the big rumor out there is that Kaka has already agreed to terms with Manchester City, with a transfer fee in the neighborhood of £70 million. However, most of the mainstream media has yet to report on this story. As such, we'll store that one away in the file until it becomes [...]

Will Gallas Leave Arsenal?

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According to a report published by the British tabloid The Sun, Arsenal central defender William Gallas is unhappy at being 'ostracized' by the club and wants to move out of the Emirates. Gallas was recently stripped of the Arsenal captaincy after he made controversial comments about his teammates at the Emirates.

Tottenham Linked With Glen Johnson & Stephen Appiah

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Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur are struggling this season but this has not deterred them from making moves in the transfer market. According to a report in the British tabloid The Daily Mirror, Spurs are looking forward to signing Glen Johnson and Stephen Appiah in January. Johnson plays for Portsmouth and has been in a great [.

Top 10 Horror Football Injuries

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It's often done, easy in fact. You are watching a game and the opposition's fancy-dan number 10 hits the deck after a hard (but fair) challenge from your team's midfield enforcer. The scream goes up, their bench goes up, and their players surround the ref. It winds you up, "He hardly touched him ref", you [.

Transfer Rumors (4 Dec 08): Chelsea looking for Love in the right place, Everton want Nugent, Blackburn

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Believe it or not, today's roundup is without a Manchester City-related tidbit. That must mean it's a quiet day, right? I don't have any monster rumors to report on, but there are several interesting morsels to chew on. Chelsea Loan Deal for Brazilian Striker? Chelsea could be looking to swing a bargain deal in [.

Chelsea to pip Everton and Tottenham for Love

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Chelsea being frugal? That might come as a surprise to many, but that could be the case in January. According to The Independent, the Blues may be looking to swing a loan deal for CSKA Moscow striker Vagner Love. Love has been linked with moves to the Premier League recently, with Tottenham and [.

Blackburn hope to lure former Liverpool defender back to Premier League

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According to reports, Blackburn could help shore up their back line in January by making a move for former Liverpool and Fulham right back Steve Finnan. Defense is one of several areas that Blackburn must address in January, as they've allowed a league-worst 28 goals in 16 league matches. Rovers have already been [.

Nugent to get career back on track at Everton?

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According to The Sun, Everton could offer Portsmouth striker David Nugent a career lifeline by making a move for Nugent in January. Nugent was primed for big things when he moved from Preston to Portsmouth in the summer of 2007, but he only made eight starts (with three goals) last season and has made [.

Roy Keane Resigns From Sunderland

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Roy Keane has resigned as the manager of the Premier League club Sunderland. It has been confirmed that the former Manchester United captain has resigned from his managerial position at the club. Sunderland's form this season so far has been woeful as they have now dropped down to 18th in the table, thanks to six defeats [.

Transfer Round Up (Dec 4,2008)- Man City And Chelsea Fight For David Villa, Ces Fabregas Hints At Arsenal Departure, Nike Factor In Ronaldo Move And More

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Today's transfer wrap-ups includes the intrusion of a Nike factor in Cristiano Ronaldo's 'prospective' move to Inter Milan, Cesc Fabregas meantioning AC Milan as possessing a "winning mentality" and FC Barcelona star Xavi Hernandez rejecting an offer from AC Milan. But first the news of a Premier League managerial casualty.

Chelsea, Manchester City To Fight For David Villa

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Latest reports suggest that Premier League duo Manchester City and Chelsea are set to battle head-to-head for the prized signature of the Valencia hotshot David Villa. Valencia are reportedly immersed in millions of debt and shall need to sell a number of stars in January and then in the summer to gather the required amount.

Ronaldo To Inter Milan Because Of Nike Deal?

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In what could be an instance of sponsorship issues dictating football, it has reported that sportswear giants Nike could persuade the Manchester United star Cristiano Ronaldo to join Italian champions Inter Milan. A report on Goal.com suggests that Nike, that sponsors both Inter and Ronaldo, could be a very crucial factor in Ronaldo moving to the [.

Fabregas Hints At Arsenal Departure

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Arsenal midfielder Cesc Fabregas has once again unwittingly flared up rumours on his future at the Emirates by saying that he would like to play for the Italian powerhouse AC Milan. A report on Goal.com quotes the Spanish international midfielder as saying that he would like to play for Milan if he decides to leave Arsenal [.

Mass Exodus at Valencia, Drogba Going Nowhere, Owen’s Merseyside Return, and more!

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Welcome to the Cristiano Ronaldo-free Transfer Rumor update for December 4, 2008. Today's rumors include two big-time homecomings, a possible fire-sale at a big-name club, and a couple of in-demand players who are going nowhere... for now. Valencia Fire Sale? According to reports, Valencia are on the verge of bankruptcy and must pay 50 million [.

Top 20 Weird & Wonderful Football Injuries

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Ah, so it has come to this. A list of the most ridiculous, hilarious, and downright odd football injuries ever known to man. From salad cream to wedding rings, dog piss to power drills, get ready. It might get a little freaky. 1. Dave Beasant & Santiago Canizares Ok so I am starting out by cheating. Not [.

Barcelona Midfielder Xavi Rejected Milan

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FC Barcelona star Xavi Hernandez has revealed that way back in 1999 when he was still a young and promising footballer he was offered a massive deal by Italian powerhouse AC Milan. A Goal.com report quotes the Barcelona symbol as saying that 11 years back Milan came calling for him. At the time Xavi rejected the [.

Transfer Rumors (3 Dec 08): Villa, Santa Cruz, and Grosso to City, Liverpool and Manchester United in for Zuculini

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It would be going a bit far to say that Manchester City are interested in every well-known player in Europe, but it certainly does feel like it these days, doesn't it? Subhankar and Victor both mentioned City in their transfer coverage today, and my roundup is dominated by City. And if you're getting tired [.

Sulky Santa Cruz to demand City move

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A few weeks ago, I reported on a tidbit from The Guardian about Roque Santa Cruz being unhappy about Blackburn's struggles and wanting to move to Manchester City to reunite with Mark Hughes. Now it appears that Santa Cruz is going to do what he must to get what he wants, as the Paraguayan [...]

Manchester City and Chelsea in Villa tussle

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According to the Daily Mirror, Manchester City and Chelsea are set to battle it out for Valencia star David Villa in January. Villa was one of the summer's hottest names, and a four-goal haul at Euro 2008 only served to fuel the speculation about him leaving the Mestalla. It looked like Valencia would [.

Transfer Round Up (Dec 3,2008) - Real Sign Huntelaar, Inter Milan Eyeing Ronaldo, Milan Chasing Agger And More

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Today was quite a busy day for the transfer rumour mill. While Real Madrid's first winter signing was confirmed, the Cristiano Ronaldo circus seems to be bracing itself for another ride. Real Madrid Confirm Huntelaar Signing Spanish champions Real Madrid have confirmed the signing of Dutch international Klaas-Jan Huntelaar from Ajax for a reported fee of €20 [.

Transfer Rumors (3 December 2008) - Gallas to AC Milan, Villa Want Heskey or Santa Cruz, Why Bastian Schweinsteiger Turned Down Juventus, and more!

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Today's Transfer Rumor Roundup focuses on two Premiership clubs that promise to spend big, as well as a third that could join them. We'll also take a look at one player who went from franchise cornerstone to someone who could leave in January, as well as Tottenham's continued quest for a new goalkeeper.

Inter Milan Eyeing Manchester United’s Ronaldo

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Italian champions Inter Milan have rather surprisingly thrown their name into the bidding hat for Manchester United's Cristiano Ronaldo. According to a report by Goal.com, Ronaldo's agent Jorge Mendes has have had talks with Inter Milan representatives and has allegedly informed them that the Portuguese international winger is available at the end of the season.

Manchester City Chasing Sevilla Duo Fabiano And Capel

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Premier League club Manchester City are reportedly interested in swooping in on Spain in January to recruit a couple of top quality players. A report on Goal.com suggests that the cash-packed Eastlands side are willing to splash any amount of cash to sign some top quality La Liga stars. Among the Spain-based players whom Man City [.

Milan Chasing Liverpool’s Daniel Agger

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Italian and European powerhouse AC Milan are preparing to launch a bid for the Liverpool midfielder Daniel Agger in January, according to a report on Goal.com. It has been reported in the Italian media that Milan are bracing themselves for a number of top draw signings when the transfer window reopens in January and on the [.

Casillas Says No To Man City Offer

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Premier League club Manchester City seem to have been snubbed by the Real Madrid and Spain custodian Iker Casillas, not once but twice in the last three months. It has been reported by Goal.com that the Spain international goalkeeper and Euro 2008 winner rejected a huge proposal from Manchester City in the summer and also rejected [.

Real Madrid Sign Klaas-Jan Huntelaar From Ajax

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Reigning Spanish champions and European powerhouse Real Madrid have eventually signed Dutch international striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar from Ajax for a reported fee of €20 million, according to Goal.com. The Madrid giants have been seeking a top class striker after Ruud van Nistelrooy was ruled out for the rest of the season.

Chelsea let Manchester United (and Arsenal) off the hook while Liverpool blow the title

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It's been a pivotal 2 weeks in the PL. Three weeks ago I suggested that if United failed to win at Villa their chances of retaining the title could be on the ropes. This was based on the premise that both Chelsea and Liverpool would record maximum points in relatively easy home games. A 5 [...]

Football Porn?

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Homosexuality is a touchy subject; gay footballers even more so (and you know how we love talking about touchy subjects). When you consider that footballers are invariably looked upon as role models for children (for better or worse), many otherwise liberal and politically-correct parents would throw a fit if they found out their precious offspring [.

Transfer Rumors (2 Dec 08):

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It's still early in the week, but there's been plenty to talk about already when it comes to transfer news and rumors. Here's a rundown of a trio of Premier League-related rumors, and if you want to get caught up on some of the other top rumors of the day, check out Subhankar's and [...]

Wrapped In A Box

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Today's news roundup is brought to you by the ever-so-delicious Charlize Theron and her perfectly photoshopped bod. So what if they airbrush her wrinkles and cellulite away? The dream is often all you need... By the way, before (or after) you read this, please go to the Soccerlens Awards site and VOTE for your favourite football [.

Best Footballer of 2008: Ronaldo, Messi, Xavi, Torres, Toni or Ibrahimovic?

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Who do you rate as the best football player in 2008? Ronaldo may be sweeping the awards but there are several other solid contenders for the player of the year title (including some, like Casillas and Aboutrika, who didn't make the list here). There's Messi, who has a better goals + assists to games ratio [.

Napoli better than England, says Chelsea target Lavezzi

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Chelsea's hopes of landing Napoli striker Ezequiel Lavezzi sometime in the near future don't look too promising, as the Argentine hit-man has explicitly said he isn't interested in a move to England. Napoli are currently 4th in Serie A, and the 23-year old has been a big reason why, with four goals and four [.

Yaya says nah nah to link up with brother at Arsenal

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The Yaya Toure to Arsenal rumors have heated up once again, as The Sun is linking the Gunners with a bid for the Barcelona midfielder and brother of Arsenal defender Kolo. Arsenal were heavily linked with the younger Toure in the summer, but nothing materialized. Now, the speculation is that the club is [.

Best Football Team of 2008: Manchester United, Spain, Chelsea, Brazil, Zenit or Juventus?

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Which football team (club or international) delivered the most outstanding performances in the year of 2008? Was it Juventus, who stormed to 3rd place in the Serie A after spending an year in Serie B? Was it the Brazilian Women's Team, who were arguably the best Womens' football team in 2008? Or Spain, winners of Euro 2008?

Transfer Roundup (Dec 2, 2008)- Real To Sign Dutch Striker, Liverpool To Sign Real Defender, Arsenal in for Serie A midfielder and more

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The January winter transfer is still a month away but it appears that reigning Spanish champions and European giants Real Madrid have already made their first winter signing. And Premier League clubs Liverpool and Arsenal are looking to add their squad and have been seeking reinforcements. Real Madrid On The Verge Of Signing Klaas-Jan Huntelaar Real Madrid [.

Everton look to Larsson to replace Yakubu

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According to the Daily Mail, Everton could make a move for Henrik Larsson as they look to bolster their depleted strike force. With primary goal-getter Yakubu out for the remainder of the season with a ruptured Achilles, David Moyes has to sign a new striker in January, and preferably spend as little money as [.

Knock! Knock! You Can’t Come Out!

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One Summer night in Miami I got traumatized. I'm pretty much open to all things, I like to think, unless you mess with my religion. I got my head turned forever, though. You don't know who you are until you're tested. My wife and I were on vacation in Miami. My daughter and her boyfriend [...]

Real Madrid in talks to buy Klaas-Jan Huntelaar From Ajax

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Reigning Spanish champions Real Madrid are on the brink of making their first winter signing this season as they have seemingly sealed a deal with Dutch powerhouse Ajax to recruit the highly rated striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar. It has been widely reported by the Spanish press that the former 9 times European champions, who are enduring some [.

What Can Be Done To Save (F)Ailing Clubs?

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A week in football, the saying goes, is a long time. On the pitch that may be true but off the pitch the problems facing troubled clubs aren't much different from the problems of last week, last month, or even last year. Last week this column highlighted the plight of Weymouth, Salisbury and Lewes, and their [.

The Gilded Sport: A Look at Elite American High-School Soccer

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Note: for privacy reasons I won't my high school's name or any players on my team, but we finished the season ranked in the Top 15 in the country, according to ESPNrise.com In light of recent posts I've read on here discussing player development at elite youth academics in American soccer, I thought I'd offer my [.

Peter Kenyon: Didier Drogba Won’t Leave Chelsea for Inter

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Chelsea chief executive Peter Kenyon has emphasized that their star striker Didier Drogba is not leaving Stamford Bridge, at least not in January. Speaking to BBC Sport, the former Manchester United CEO said that the Ivory Coast international striker is not going anywhere. Drogba reportedly met officials from Italian champions Inter Milan whose manager Jose Mourinho, [.

Manchester City Can’t Have Chelsea Defenders, Everton want Newcastle striker, Spurs want West Ham or Bolton keeper, and the latest on Podolski and Real Madrid

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There are some interesting rumors floating out there today. Is Lukas Podolski staying or going? Are Everton looking for a new striker? Are Tottenham looking to replace Gomes as their goalkeeper? What big name could be heading to the U.S.? And are Manchester City preparing to shatter the transfer record [.

Scolari’s rants not the answer for fallible Chelsea

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Prior to Saturday's 2-1 defeat against title rivals Arsenal, ‘Big' Phil Scolari had avoided controversy during the opening six months of his reign as Chelsea manager. Scolari let his Chelsea team do their talking on the pitch, and with some fabulous football along with some good results, the Brazilian had adapted to life in England [.

Liverpool To Sign former Man Utd player From Real Madrid?

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According to latest reports, Premier League club Liverpool are eying Argentine international defender Gabriel Heinze. Heinze is currently at Spanish champions Real Madrid and although he is playing more or less regularly, he is not at all rated by the Bernabeu faithful. The versatile Argentine international defender was signed by Real Madrid in the summer of [.

Arsenal Face Competition In Felipe Melo Bid

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Premier League club Arsenal would have to confront stiff competition in their bid to sign the highly rated Fiorentina midfielder Felipe Melo. The Gunners' interest in the skillful Brazilian medio has earned interest from Arsenal, who are seemingly on the verge of making a bid for the 25-year old. The creative midfielder had earlier played for [.

Giovinco’s West Ham Link Crashes

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Juventus youngster Sebastian Giovinco shall not be making the switch over to the Premier League club West Ham United. The 21-year highly rated Italian striker has been linked with a move out of Turin since the start of this season as in spite of being hugely talented he has found himself warming the bench for Juventus.

Transfer Rumors (Dec 1,08): Tevez To Real Madrid, Barry Snubs Liverpool, Man City Hunting Bayern Star And More

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Today's transfer round-up throws up some pretty spicy news indeed. A couple of them are sort of drag-ons, follow-ups rather, but there has been a rather interesting development, or shall we say, a retrogressive development, as far as Liverpool are concerned..... Real Madrid Still Hunting Carlos Tevez Spanish and European powerhoue Real Madrid are in desperate need [.

West Ham Manager Interested In Juventus’ Giovinco

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West Ham United manager Gianfranco Zola has admitted that he would be interested in signing the highly rated Juventus striker Sebastian Giovinco. The 21-year old is said to be one of the most promising young players in Europe and is currently at Juventus. But he has been relegated to the bench by Claudio Ranieri so far [.

Real Madrid Inching Towards Manchester United Striker

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Reigning Spanish champions and European powerhouse Real Madrid are seemingly inching closer to signing Argentine international Carlos Tevez from defending Premier League and European champions Manchester United, according to latest reports. The Madrid giants have declared that they shall make a few signings in January in the wake of their star striker Ruud van Nistelrooy being [.

Liverpool top with game in hand, Arsenal didn’t deserve win over Chelsea, Newcastle should have lost to Middlesbrough

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So in the words of Phil Scolari referee Mike Dean "killed" his team during the defeat to Arsenal. While up at the City of Manchester Stadium, Sir Alex Ferguson would not be drawn on the performance of Howard Webb. Once again it is the match officials who are dominating the back pages, with managers up and [.

Heskey for sale: would Liverpool, Man City or Aston Villa be interested?

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Premier League club Wigan Athletic have declared that they are ready to offload star striker Emile Heskey when the transfer window opens in January, leading to more speculation on the England international's future. Heskey's current contract with the Lactics expires at the end of the season and at the moment no new contract talks have taken [.

Liverpool Snubbed By Gareth Barry

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Premier League and UEFA Champions League contenders Liverpool have been snubbed by their summer pursuit Gareth Barry as the Aston Villa midfielder himself has admitted that he is sticking onto Villa Park for the moment. Liverpool were involved in a much publicized and protracted summer transfer saga in regards to Barry.

Bayern Fallout Boy To Manchester City?

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According to latest reports emanating from the British press, Bayern Munich's fallen angel Lukas Podolski could be drafted in at cash-packed Manchester City as early as January. The Polish-born German international striker is said to have fallen out with his club big time and is more than just willing to let himself off the Bayern hook [.

Spurs Spending Spree, Podolski to Arsenal, Everton or Manchester City, Owen to Liverpool and more

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Tottenham are linked with more reinforcements (no central midfielders though), Podolski is linked with a move to England, the Owen to Liverpool and Arshavin to England rumours will never die, and will Beckham find a permanent home in Milan? Spurs Plan Spending Spree Christmas has come early for Harry Redknapp, who is interested in putting in bids [.

08-09 FA Cup Third Round Draw

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The 08/09 FA Cup 3rd Round Draw was made yesterday with a number of juicy ties popping up such as Hull City v Newcastle, Southampton v Manchester United, Leicester v Crystal Palace and of course, the tie everyone's talking about, Histon v Swansea. FA Cup third round draw: Portsmouth v Bristol City Sheffield Wed v Fulham Preston v Liverpool Birmingham [.

Soccerlens 2008 Awards Winners

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And the winners are... The Soccerlens Awards recognize excellence in football blogging. After the great success of the 2007 edition, SL readers and editors gathered again to choose among 20 different awards categories and crown the best out of over a hundred quality football sites. Yes people, YOU voted (over 16,000 times) for your favorite blogs.

Cristiano Ronaldo is 2008 Ballon D’Or Winner

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Cristiano Ronaldo has won the 2008 Ballon D'Or award by an overwhelming margin. Ronaldo comfortably beat his main rivals Messi and is now the fourth Manchester United player (after Law, Charlton and Best) and the first England-based player since Michael Owen to win the France Football award. The Ballon D'Or will go nicely with his UEFA [.