English Premier League

Top 10 conclusions: Premier League weekend, August 17-18

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1. It's a new era for Manchester United, but it's the same old Robin Van Persie. Last season's talisman started the new campaign looking like he's in great nick. 2. Do not run across Allen McGregor's penalty area. The Hull keeper will punch you in the head. Maybe that's just what Fernando Torres needed.

Top five mysteriously in-favour Premier League players

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Hot on the heels of yesterday's mysteriously out-of-favour Premier League players, here are five players who are being regularly picked for reasons best known to their managers. 1. Gervinho Where do you start? Arsenal splashed out £10.8million on Gervinho and have seen very little return. Arsene Wenger persists with the enigmatic Ivorian, presumably on the [.

Footballing Side Should Be A Priority

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Wenger assessing the next generation

Hello everyone and good day to you. The clock is ticking furiously away and we're now 40 hours from the end of the transfer window (as I type this). Surprisingly, we were not linked with any new names yesterday. There were no rumours. Absolutely zero. One hopes that this is the calm before the storm but with Arsenal, it is hard to make a guess either way.

Wenger brushes off striker exit

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After watching his side succumb to a second straight goalless draw, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger rubbished claims that they'll struggle to cope with the departure of talisman Robin van Persie.

The Gunners' leading goalscorer from last season completed a shocking move to Manchester United earlier this month, and while Arsenal fired yet another blank the Dutchman was on the scoresheet at Old Trafford.

Daniele De Rossi Announces He Is Staying At Roma

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You could almost hear the scream of frustration from Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini after Roma midfielder Daniele De Rossi said he is staying at Roma.

Despite signing a new contract last season that tied him to the Giallorossi until 2017, De Rossi's agent was reported to have flown out for talks with City officials last week.

Van Persie and Song may be gone but Arsenal have cause for optimism

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Van Persie and Song may be gone but Arsenal have cause for optimism - originally posted on Soccerlens.com

The inevitable questions over who will now score the goals for Arsenal were particularly pertinent in the aftermath of a 0-0 draw with Sunderland which suggested they were already missing their Dutch talisman.

Cologne 0 – 4 Arsenal: New Signings Impress, Regulars Get In The Groove

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The earlier pre-season friendlies didn't quite excite me as much. Maybe it was the fact that many first choice players were missing that necessitated the inclusion of many youngsters who clearly weren't going to play a major part in Arsenal's season. These issues also made is pointless to look at the tactics of the team or indulge in any sort of detailed discussion of the events of the games.

Drogba’s move to Barca rubbished

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Reports evolving yesterday on a speculative move of Ivorian talisman Didier Drogba to FC Barcelona have been denied.

Claims stated that a clause in Drogba's current contract with Chinese side Shanghai Shenhua could be triggered for a free move to any club.

Last Wednesday, Drogba has announced his move to Asia by signing a two-and-a-half year deal with Shanghai Shenhua.

England edge out Sweden in five goal thriller

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Before the start of Euro2012, many England fans were pessimistic about their chances of having a successful tournament after being decimated by player injuries and with a new manager who had hardly got his feet under the table. Yesterday's 3-2 win over Sweden in their Group D matchup, certainly gave us all hope that maybe, just maybe, this tournament might be different.

Backpage roundup: Djourou, van Persie, Dzagoev and Nasri

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Djourou's Agent Discusses Potential Summer Moves

Johan Djourou's agent Flavio Ferraria has hinted that his client is on the wish list of several European clubs, including Italian outfit Napoli.

The 25-year-old centre-half is currently on a long-term deal at Arsenal but is not considered an integral part of the club's first team squad any more, with Thomas Vermaelen, Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker ahead of him in the pecking order.

Backpage Roundup: Gazidis on RVP, Biglia, M’Vila and More

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No Rushing RVP, Says Gazidis

Arsenal CEO Ivan Gazidis has said that the club is not putting any pressure on Robin van Persie to resolve his contract situation as soon as possible and insisted that the club understands that their talisman needs to concentrate on the upcoming European Championship.

‘Let’s not be having you’ – Norwich lose Paul Lambert and Grant Holt

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Not too dissimilar from Swansea, Norwich have gone from nailed-on mid-table battlers to relegation favourites in the space of week. Both teams have lost managers instrumental to their success and Norwich have suffered extra ignominy – losing their top scorer and cult-favourite talisman, Grant Holt.

Arsenal Season Review 2011-12: Tactics

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There is no need to repeat the details but it seems safe to say most, if not all, Arsenal fans were seething with disappointment, anger, or worse after the way events transpired last summer. Â Of the millions of words written on the transfer business and the subsequent season, few have covered the fact that Arsene Wenger had a massive tactical challenge in front of him after the departure of his talisman and captain, the player who could have taken his place in midfield, and that of a very hardworking and reliable defender who even though popular opinion was to the contrary remains one of the best at his job in the League.

Arsenal Season Review 2011-12: Tactics

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There is no need to repeat the details but it seems safe to say most, if not all, Arsenal fans were seething with disappointment, anger, or worse after the way events transpired last summer. Â Of the millions of words written on the transfer business and the subsequent season, few have covered the fact that Arsene Wenger had a massive tactical challenge in front of him after the departure of his talisman and captain, the player who could have taken his place in midfield, and that of a very hardworking and reliable defender who even though popular opinion was to the contrary remains one of the best at his job in the League.

Watch Stoke City vs Bolton Online Free

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So unfortunately for Bolton Wanderers there status in the Premier League has come down to this, a match at the Britannia stadium in which they need to pick up 3 points, bound to be a tall order for a side that has struggled for consistency in the league.

Stoke City have nothing to play for in this match, so at least thats one positive for Owen Coyle's Bolton side, so they may have thoughts elsewhere perhaps on there pre-season holidays.

Backpage Roundup: Dragovic, Vertonghen, Belhanda and M’Vila’s Assault

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Interest High In Arsenal Target Dragovic

FC Basel defender Aleksandar Dragovic has claimed that a number of big European clubs, including Arsenal FC, Inter Milan, Borussia Dortmund and Olympique de Marseille want to sign him in the summer transfer window.

Arsenal’s Ryo Miyaichi

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"No Japanese player has ever made a lasting impact in the Premier League, but everyone is excited about Miyaichi. Our young high flyer seems to have become a house hold name back in his native Japan.

Japanese writer Mori Masatoshi wrote that He is only second to Kiesuke Honda in Japan.


Futbolita Exclusive: An Interview With Arsenal’s Mikel Arteta On The New Season, Spain, Surprises & More

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A few weeks ago, while covering Arsenal on tour, Futbolita spoke to the lovely Mikel Arteta about Arsenal's upcoming season, his newborn son Daniel, life in the Premiership, the tough preseason and his dreams of playing for Spain. Arteta is one of those rare players you could absolutely stop on the pitch and do a "high-five" while yelling "manana, OK tipo?

Premiership preview 12/13 + a few van Persie thoughts

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Our summers are nothing if not dramatic. I've been largely ignoring it for the past few weeks ever since van Persie's original statement I've felt a little jaded by the whole thing, and haven't had the desire to track it, or write about it, on a daily basis. Kudos to those who manage to blog without a break goodness knows I needed one.

Backpage Roundup: Henry on RVP and Wilshere, Barca to Bid for Song, Szczesny’s Confidence and More

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Henry: Gunners Will Survive Without Van Persie

Thierry Henry wants current Arsenal captain Robin van Persie to extend his contract with the club but says that the Gunners will be fine even if the Dutchman is sold this summer.


Michael Bradley joins AS Roma

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The Chievo Verona midfielder joins AS Roma on a three year transfer said to cost $4.6 million. He will keep company with club talisman Daniele De Rossi, Miraljem Panic, and Simone Perotta in the midfield.

Roma is owned by Thomas DiBenedetto, an American businessman and one of the partners at Fenway Sporting Group, who own the Boston Red Sox as well as Liverpool.

Gerrard - No Injury Scares

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Steven Gerrard has played down any fears about his own fitness after playing just a half for England in their friendly with Norway.
The Liverpool skipper has endured a stop-start season both for club and country mainly because of a hamstring injury and in Saturday's international match, the midfield talisman played just 45 minutes of the 1-0 win in Oslo.

Signings, numbers 2s and tickets

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Psychology can be a very peculiar science. Last week I wrote about my increasing impression that Arsenal were crawling over the finishing line in the manner of a man searching limply for water in the desert. The game at Stoke did little to stymie that suspicion. Then the boss admitted, rather candidly, that we were almost totally relying on van Persie to nudge us over the line (Because he clearly hasn't contributed enough already this season).

Liverpool Player Ratings: Newcastle vs Liverpool

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Jose Reina – 5.0

Reina was a steady influence from the back. Did well to come out and collect crosses that his defense allowed to slip past. However, he undid all of his hard work but when he lost his cool in second-half and was sent off for violent conduct for appearing to headbutt James Perch, he should of never put himself into this position.

Lionel Messi

Ronaldo Stakes Claim for World Recognition

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Cristiano Ronaldo's impressive performances at Euro 2012 have led some people placing a bet on La Liga to suggest that he is now the undisputed best player in the world.

While he still may be slightly behind Argentinian genius, Lionel Messi, in that category, there can be no argument that Portugal's talisman is gaining ground and, when at his best, is simply unplayable.

Barca vs. Chelsea Primer: Has Javier Really Been A Great Masch for Barcelona?

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Barcelona is tired.

The genius of Messi has been a little more challenging lately....

It's not hard to see that. When a team gets tired, they slow off the ball.

Barcelona, more so then any other elite team, thrives with off-ball movement. It's necessary for neutrons in their attack.


The Bayern View: The Star's downcast.

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In the last of my series of views that have come out of Munich ahead of this one, I want to focus on one of their main men, Franck Ribery.

You'd imagine that the likes of Gomez, Robben and Ribery will be under enormous pressure to deliver on the night but by the sounds of it, Franck Ribery like the Manager and the Talisman has admitted how hard it will be to beat us.

John Terry doubtful after suffering cracked ribs

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John Terry's ribs cracked after they were used to make Eve

John Terry revealed he had a terrible time breathing in the Benfica return leg at Stamford Bridge having suffered what he thought were cracked ribs sustained in the first leg. He was subbed off after an hour and is to undergo a scan.

The Rest

Balls of String: Stories to watch as Toronto FC plays out a lost season

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"Today's attendance is 19,575... thank you fans"Getting casual fans to watch TFC matches when times were good... well at least fun.... was a challenge. Now, as yet another season enters the "playing for next year" phase, even getting the most ardent supporters interested grows harder. For those of you who know they are addicted to this club and will be back next year despite 2012, finding a reason to watch a futile string of matches may be frustrating.

Why Didn’t Ronaldo Take An Early Penalty Kick?

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TweetPortugal crashed out of Euro 2012 after a 4-2 penalty shoot-out defeat to Spain with talisman Cristiano Ronaldo bizarrely not even taking one. What happened? Admittedly, without their captain, Portugal may not have even reached the last four so superb was Ronaldo's performance in overcoming the Netherlands in the Group of Death, before easing past [.

16 years of hurt as the German machine marches on

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Germany V Greece

It's David & Goliath time in another cracker of a quarter and this tie is tastier than a plate of Sauerkraut & Hummus with the economic climate adding to the drama, the run-down Greeks will really want to get one over on their richly talented opponents.

RVP: I think we can keep him if ambition is shown

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An extremely interesting article has been published in the FT, written by a journalist, Henk Spaan, who reportedly knows RVP well, it highlights several of the key issues surrounding the future of our Dutch talisman. Â The big question is how much to read into this piece? Â I would say the general theme is worth our attention but some of the smaller details may well be just the author's

Angel and Demons

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The image is less fuzzy than the logic behind the sign.
The return of our heroic and legendary goalscorer should have inspired the New York fanbase last night at Red Bull Arena, and that enthusiasm should have, in turn, inspired the players to perform their best for their beloved fans.