IP addresses are NOT logged in this forum so there's no point asking. Members are encouraged to install GOM or HOLA or TUNNELBEAR for an added layer of protection.
Discussion in 'Sports/Games/Hobbies' started by yinyang, Jul 5, 2017.
chelsea to win.
Yup. Negative tactics coming from Mourinho to be sure. It’s gonna be 8 points rift.
United will be lucky if they finish top 4. The football is lousy and the tactics predictable. The constant jibe between managers is turning the premier league into a circus.
Mou's comments on Conte is unwarranted. If anything he showed that he fears Conte. In short Mou has no class.
The big piece of Belgian dung has confirmed once and for all that he is not a big game player.
You guys predicted right (unfortunately). From my soapbox:
> Chelskis midfield overan us. Mikhi was off, leaving all the work to Matic
> Bumbling sweet potato Jones contributed 2X. 1st, was a 'well executed' OG.
Truth be told, unsure of ref's blowing foul.
> And what was he doing in midfield, and losing the ball allowing Chelski to score?!
> Can't disagree on that mop haired bugger. He also gave away cheap balls 2X after coming on
Footy has to be more of the players, and NOT just the managers' egos.
Alvaro Morata seals win to reinvigorate Antonio Conte's Chelsea reign
yet could end Manchester United's title chances
Chelsea 1 Manchester United 0: Striker's brilliant finish is enough to secure all three points
and keep Blues in touch of Premier League leaders Manchester City
Manchester United pay the price for going on the attack,
Chelsea rely on moment of magic from Alvaro Morata
Five things we learned: Eden Hazard getting back to his best, Antonio Conte rewarded for dropping David Luiz and consistency the key for Anthony Martial
Chelsea celebrate after Alvaro Morata's winning goal against Manchester United Getty
Mourinho opens up and pays the price
The criticism that Jose Mourinho faced for his Manchester United side’s performance in the draw with Liverpool and win over Tottenham may have been behind his decision to go for the jugular on his return to Stamford Bridge, and for the first half at least, United had chances to score.
But they were also far more vulnerable at the back as a result, and eventually the pressure told when Alvaro Morata was left free to score the opener. Mourinho has always been a defence first, attack second kind of coach, and it has brought him phenomenal success throughout his career. So why change it?
Mourinho is unlikely to change his tactics due to public pressure. More likely, the United manager will have seen the 3-0 defeat by Roma in midweek and decided that his former side were vulnerable and there for the taking. Sadly for him, they weren’t.
Morata delivers when it was easier to choke
As the Cesar Azpilicueta’s cross floated through the air towards Morata, the crowd held their breath in anticipation of a clear-cut chance. However, few will have expected the Spaniard to find the back of the net.
Morata's header was a brilliant finish from the edge of the area (Getty)
The striker was positioned on the edge of the area, had decided that he was taking on the cross first-time and was facing arguably the best goalkeeper in the Premier League. The stage was set for Morata to choke, and fluff his header anywhere but goal.
But not this time. His true class shone through as he timed his jump to perfection, connected fully with the ball and used the pace of the cross to guide it beyond the reach of De Gea with a delicate curl on the effort. It was a lovely finish and one that was deserving of such a grand occasion.
Hazard getting back to his best
Eden Hazard has not been able to reach the same highs this season as what he’s produced in the past, but his broken leg that delayed his start is almost certainly behind that. This was as good a performance as we’ve seen from the Belgian this season though, with the forward able to hold up the ball and protect possession when needed, link-up with Morata in attack and do his share of defending as well.
He may not have got his name on the scoresheet, but it was his cross that allowed Morata to score the winner and there were definite signs that Hazard was beginning to get close to his best again.
If Antonio Conte can return Hazard to his highest level, there is no reason why Chelsea cannot claw their way back into the title race after this result.
Hazard is returning to the top of his game (Getty)
Conte’s decision to drop Luiz rewarded
Antonio Conte caused a stir when he dropped David Luiz not just from the starting line-up, but from the matchday squad completely. The Brazilian has not been at his best recently, and he also has a long-term knee injury that he has been playing through the pain barrier in order to appear.
Instead, Conte put his faith in young defender Andreas Christensen, and his performance throughout was one of a man who looked at home in the Premier League. The Dane may only be 21 years old, but he settled in alongside the experienced pairing of Gary Cahill and Cesar Azpilicueta and certainly strengthened Chelsea’s back line.
He also did well to nullify Romelu Lukaku’s threat, with the Belgian largely absent for most of the game. If Luiz is simply being rested, Conte may have a big decision on his hands to bring him straight back in given Christensen’s performance.
Consistency will get Martial regular football
Once again, Anthony Martial’s return to the starting line-up lasted a single game. Excluding the EFL Cup, Martial has not started consecutive matches this season, and the lack of consistency in game time looks to be affecting his ability to string together positive performances.
He saved United when he was sent on by Mourinho to score the winning goal against Spurs last time out in the league, and his reward was a start against Benfica in the Champions League. Starting two games in the same week should not be beyond a 21-year-old, yet even though he has scored six goals this season, Mourinho clearly still wants more before he becomes a regular.
Consistency will be the key for Martial, as if he can start to produce his moments of magic on a regular basis, there’s certainly a place there to be tied down.
Man Utd star Juan Mata wanted by Real Madrid in SHOCK January swoop - EXCLUSIVE
REAL MADRID are set to make a shock move to take Juan Mata back to Spain from Manchester United.
By RICHARD TANNER
Real Madrid are considering making a move for Juan Mata in January
Mata was surprisingly left out of Jose Mourinho’s 18-man squad for the defeat to Chelsea on Sunday sparking questions about his long-term future at Old Trafford, especially because his contract expires next summer.
It is understood that Real want the Spain international midfielder to spark fresh impetus into their faltering season.
Mata started his career as a youngster at the Bernabeu before making a name for himself at Valencia and then Chelsea.
Mourinho sold Mata to United during his second spell at Stamford Bridge and even though he was a regular last season when United won the League Cup and Europa League double, he has not been as effective this season and continues to be played wide rather than in his favoured ‘No 10’ position.
Significantly, he has been substituted in each of his 11 starts this season.
He is 30 in April and United could be willing to listen to offers in January to avoid him leaving on a free in the summer.
Fans favourite Mata was humiliatingly hauled off at half-time of the recent shock defeat at Huddersfield after a mistake that led to one of the Terriers’ goals.
He was then an unused sub for the home win over Tottenham and then left out of the 18 for the Chelsea game altogether, although he did travel to London with the squad.
Real are keeping an eye on developments as they prepare to make their move as soon as the transfer window opens in January.
Mata insists he is still at the peak of his powers and feels he can perform at the highest level for years to come.
"It's gone quickly to be honest. I made my professional debut when I was 18 in Real Madrid's second team, and then in Valencia in the first division when I was 19,” Mata said.
"So it's 10 years which went really, really quickly.
"Time flies, in general but, in football, even more. But I see myself young in a way, you know, my body feels good, my mind feels good.
"I'm hungry to keep enjoying this sport. So hopefully, all being well, I can be playing football for many more years.
"You just have to be professional - as I have been - and take care of your body, because your body is your tool to perform at the good level for many years.
"I think it is so important that you don't take anything for granted.
"You must wake up every day feeling lucky and privileged and go to training with the best motivation, because anything can change in one second.
"So don't taking anything for granted, even in football."
How do United solve a problem like Mkhitaryan?
The Armenian is out-of-sorts but still starting and it is affecting the rest of the side
Henrikh Mkhitaryan's form has tailed off after a promising start to the season
Romelu Lukaku has attracted much of the criticism for Manchester United's recent sub-par performances, but with Zlatan Ibrahimovic still sidelined, Jose Mourinho has little option but to defend his “untouchable” striker and persist playing him.
The Portuguese has other fires to fight in any case and the most urgent may be located directly behind Lukaku, where the decline of United's creator-in-chief needs to be quickly arrested.
Take a glance at the basic raw numbers and it is hard to deny that Henrikh Mkhitaryan enjoyed an excellent start to the season. The playmaker registered five assists in his opening three league games, each of which was an authoritative United win that promised much for the season ahead.
Mkhitaryan was more than meeting his quotas back then, even if some of the assists had more to do with the scorer’s finishing than his own vision and passing. When the final of the five came, a deflected corner that Marcus Rashford volleyed home against Leicester City, the Armenian's productive start all seemed a little unsustainable. Indeed, so it was.
His personal numbers since those first three games do not make for pleasant reading. Mkhitaryan has failed to set up one of his team-mates in the league since August and he has scored just once all season, notching with a late finish against an Everton side ready to throw in the towel. A single strike and a single assist on the Champions League trip to CSKA Moscow is all he has managed in other competitions too.
It is, all told, seven games since his last goal or assist. Rather than playing ‘in the hole’, Mkhitaryan seems to have fallen down one and United have suffered as a result.
Incredibly, since the start of September, Mourinho’s side have created less than Stoke City, Crystal Palace and Bournemouth, three clubs experiencing difficulties at the wrong end of the table. Who are the Premier League's five most inventive teams in the same period? United’s direct title and top-four rivals, of course. Is it any wonder then that the displays against Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea were poor on the whole, even if the results were mixed?
Mkhitaryan has to take a portion of the blame for these recent struggles and if the Armenian’s time on the pitch is anything to go by, Mourinho has realised as much. The Armenian has been substituted in all 10 of his league starts this season and he is gradually being taken off earlier and earlier. Whereas at the beginning of the campaign he was only withdrawn after the 80-minute mark, Mkhitaryan is now trusted for little more than an hour.
The nadir of his season so far came at Stamford Bridge on Sunday when he was replaced after 62 minutes. He could have no complaints. While Cesc Fabregas, operating alongside Eden Hazard and behind Alvaro Morata, laid on six chances for Chelsea that afternoon, Mkhitaryan could not manage one. Marouane Fellaini, his replacement, fashioned two despite being on the pitch for the half the time.
It seems the right moment to pull Mkhitaryan out of the firing line and hope the rest will help him rediscover some form. A dose of tough love certainly appeared to help last season, when his full integration into life at Old Trafford was postponed until November.
Yet if he is to drop out of the side, who should replace him? Juan Mata, the natural choice, is quietly getting away with an even less productive season. The Spaniard has scored just once and is yet to assist. Jesse Lingard could fill in but his audition during the defeat to Huddersfield Town was hardly convincing. None of the other options are a natural fit: injuries mean Ander Herrera is better deeper and needed there, Fellaini is more of a ‘Plan B’, Paul Pogba remains out and is more effective in a midfield pair.
Therein lies the rub. In Mkhitaryan, Mourinho has a second out-of-sorts player who still has to start week in and week out despite his slump in form. There are too few alternatives in United's squad and ultimately, none of them can compete with the invention of a player who is capable of racking up 32 assists in a single season.
That was the Henrikh Mkhitaryan who arrived in Manchester for £26.3m during the summer of 2016. United desperately need to see that player again.
About bloody time he works for his wages
Manchester United handed boost with Paul Pogba, Marcos Rojo and Michael Carrick set for imminent comebacks
Paul Pogba, Marcos Rojo and Michael Carrick have been injured this term
The trio could return for Manchester United following international break
They took part in a session with U23s on Wednesday and again on Thursday
Zlatan Ibrahimovic has been increasing workload - but away from main group
By SIMON JONES FOR THE DAILY MAIL
PUBLISHED: 22:31 GMT, 9 November 2017 | UPDATED: 22:31 GMT, 9 November 2017
Jose Mourinho expects his squad to be strengthened following the international break after Paul Pogba, Marcos Rojo and Michael Carrick returned to training this week.
The trio took part in a session with United's U23s on Wednesday and again on Thursday as they stepped up recovery from their respective injuries.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic has also been increasing his workload — though the striker is still working separately from the main group.
Paul Pogba has missed 12 games for Manchester United because of a hamstring tear
Michael Carrick is understood to have been combating a virus which has made him dizzy
Pogba has missed 12 games because of a hamstring tear but could be back to face Newcastle United on November 18.
Rojo may need more time before his comeback as he has been out since the end of last season following knee ligament damage.
Carrick has made just one appearance this season against Burton Albion and is understood to have been combating a virus which has made him dizzy and nauseous.
Their returns are timely after Mourinho came under fire for his tactics at Stamford Bridge last Sunday as United slipped to defeat at Chelsea and saw the gap between themselves and rivals Manchester City at the top of the Premier League widen to eight points.
Meanwhile, a Paris Saint-Germain spokesman has claimed they have 'no interest' in appointing Jose Mourinho as their next coach. The United manager has 18 months left on a contract worth around £15million a year.
Marcos Rojo may need more time before comeback as he has been out since end of last term
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/fo...ick-set-imminent-comebacks.html#ixzz4xz40voLV
Didier Deschamps fuels talk of 'globetrotter' Jose Mourinho leaving Manchester United to manage PSG
United manager has already confirmed he will not end his career at Old Trafford
France manager Didier Deschamps believes that Jose Mourinhowould consider leaving Manchester United for Paris Saint-Germain in the future because the country remains one that he is yet to tick off on his CV.
Mourinho spoke warmly of PSG last month, fuelling rumours that he could already be courting the leading job in Ligue 1 despite only being in his second season at Old Trafford. He has since played down suggestions of a move across the Channel and insisted he is happy with United, although the Portuguese did reiterate that he will not end his career with the club.
With this in mind, Deschamps’ latest comments add weight to the theory that Paris will be Mourinho’s next destination, having already ticked off Portugal, Italy, Spain and England three times on his “globetrotter” career.
“Jose Mourinho, why not?” said Deschamps. “He's pretty happy at Manchester United at the moment. But he's a bit of a globetrotter. So why not in France too? He has not been to France yet.
“PSG are the most stand-out team in France. They are doing well nationally and in the Champions League.”
The rumours have surfaced after Mourinho labelled PSG “magic” following their summer spending spree on Neymar and Kylian Mbappe, the former setting them back a world record £200m and the latter due to sign permanently at the end of the season for £160m once his loan deal from Monaco ends.
The 54-year-old has still never managed four complete seasons at any club since his first job at Benfica in 2000, and the prospect of him emulating Sir Alex Ferguson and building a dynasty at United looks very slim by his own admission.
“The only thing I can say is I'm still a coach with worries, with ambitions, and with the desire to do new things. I'm sure that I won't end my career here,” Mourinho said last week.
“The other day, my son who lives in London went to Paris to watch a PSG match instead of Manchester because at the moment in Paris there is something special. Magic, quality, youth, it's fantastic.”
Reports have claimed that Mourinho is already in talks with United offer a potential contract extension, although he has also played that down in recent public appearances and remains contracted to the club only until the end of next season.
Manchester United's January transfer plans
taking shape with Jose Mourinho eyeing
Valencia's Carlos Soler
Mourinho still wants a winger and regrets missing out on Inter's Ivan Perisic but is aware that funds in what will be a quiet winter window will be tight
The Independent Sport
Jose Mourinho has identified Carlos Soler as his No 1 target in the January window
Jose Mourinho currently sees Valencia’s Carlos Soler as his main January transfer target, in what is likely to be a limited window for Manchester United.
While the Portuguese still wants to bring in a winger and regrets not signing Internazionale’s Ivan Perisic in the summer due to the effect it has had on his attacking plans, the club have already made it known that funds for purchases will be much more constrained than then, and the United boss has in that time become increasingly concerned on how injury to Paul Pogba has had a greater effect on his whole team.
The absence of the French star due to a hamstring problem has suddenly seen United forced to play a much less expansive game without his passing, having left Mourinho with few alternative options in midfield.
Soler has meanwhile greatly impressed United staff in the 11 months since making his debut for Valencia in December.
Even though he is just 20, the Spanish under-21 international has shown many qualities United lack as well as a maturity, and would likely cost around £40m.
United have also considered the possibility of offering Andreas Pereira - who is currently thriving on loan at Valencia - plus cash for Soler.
Soler has impressed for Valencia this season (AFP)
Valencia are enjoying something of a revival on the sporting side, second in the league and thriving under new coach Marcelino but the club is still in a financial hole.
This year they recorded a €26m deficit, their third consecutive annual loss. Those losses stack up to around €70m and despite their lofty league position there is an understanding that it would be financially disastrous if they cannot find a way to return to the Champions League.
Sources inside the Spanish club insist that Soler, an academy product, is way down the list of players that they want to sell but, equally, concede that a big offer from United would force the hand of a club still struggling to balance the books.
Manchester United announce increased revenues in latest financial figures
Commercial, broadcasting and matchday revenues all increase from the same period last year, thanks in part to the club's return to the Champions League
Manchester United have announced increased revenues in their latest financial results Getty
Manchester United announced record first quarter revenues of £141m on Thursday, up 17 per cent from the same period last year.
The latest set of financial results, relating to the three-month period between July and September 2017, take into account the club’s pre-season tour of the United States and the summer signings of Romelu Lukaku, Nemanja Matic and Victor Lindelof.
In a statement, the club’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward said: “We are just over a quarter of the way through what promises to be another exciting season.
“In the Champions League we have won all four games played to-date; we are through to the quarter final of the Carabao Cup; and are looking forward to the next few months as the number of matches ramps up.”
United's commercial revenue for the quarter rose by £6.2m to £80.5m, with the increase attributed to a greater number of pre-season friendly matches during the club's summer visit to the United States.
A return to the Champions League under manager Jose Mourinho helped broadcasting (£38.1m) and matchday revenues (£22.4m) rise by around a third.
What you might have missed from United's latest financial figures
Qualification for European football’s elite club competition also saw salary increases for members of the playing staff, with the expense of employee benefits rising to £69.9 million, an increase of 12.2 per cent
The other headline figure saw the club’s net debt, a point of contention ever since the Glazers’ controversial takeover in 2005, listed as £268.1m, a 20.6 per cent decrease over the course of the year.
United's gross debt remains unchanged but an increase in cash reserves to £216m, up from £164m last year, helped the net figure to fall.
Net income for the period was listed at £7.9m and for the forthcoming fiscal year, United expect total revenues to hit between £575m and £585m.
In January, United returned to the top of the Deloitte Football Money League for the first time in 11 years after recording the highest annual revenues for a football club in history.
The club’s revenue of £515.3m for the 2015/16 season saw them unseat La Liga rivals Real Madrid and Barcelona. In September, for the year ending 30 June 2017, United reported increased total revenues of £581.2mil
Man Utd: Zlatan Ibrahimovic & Paul Pogba in squad against Newcastle
Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Paul Pogba will return to the Manchester United squad for Saturday's Premier League game against Newcastle at Old Trafford.
Striker Ibrahimovic, 36, is yet to play this season after suffering a cruciate knee ligament injury in April.
Midfielder Pogba, 24, has not played since injuring a hamstring against Basel in September.
Defender Marcos Rojo is also available and manager Jose Mourinho said "all three will be selected".
Rojo, 27, suffered cruciate knee ligament damage in the same match as Ibrahimovic - a Europa League quarter-final second-leg victory over Anderlecht.
Former Sweden striker Ibrahimovic made 46 appearances and scored 28 goals for United last season.
He was released by the club in June after his season was ended prematurely, but re-signed on a one-year deal in August.
"Last season we played with Zlatan every minute," said Mourinho.
"We have learned how to play without him. Of course we welcome him back. He is an incredible personality."
Of Pogba, Mourinho said it was clear there was a "Manchester United before and after" his injury.
United recorded three wins and one draw in the four league games they played before the France midfielder was forced off during the Champions League fixture at Old Trafford.
Without him they won three Champions League games and two EFL Cup ties but lost twice in seven league games - drawing one and winning the other four.
"He has qualities that influence our approach in matches," said Mourinho.
'Ibrahimovic and Lukaku can play together'
Ibrahimovic's return came after United had signed striker Romelu Lukaku from Everton for an initial £75m, and the 24-year-old has scored seven times in his first 11 Premier League games.
Mourinho says the Belgium international and Ibrahimovic can play together.
"Good players can play together," said the Portuguese. "With good players, it is easy to play together.
"We can't expect him [Ibrahimovic] to play full 90 minutes or consecutive matches. He needs time to be back to his level - fitness and sharpness is everything.
How late tonight? Glad Zlatan's back with Pogba
Romelu Lukaku scored three times during the international break - but he has failed to score in his last seven games for Manchester United
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho says long-term absentees Paul Pogba, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Marcos Rojo are in contention to return on Saturday.
However, defender Phil Jones is set to miss out with a thigh problem.
Newcastle pair Jamaal Lascelles and Christian Atsu are absent with respective ankle and thigh problems.
Mikel Merino remains sidelined by a back injury, while Paul Dummett won't feature because of a lack of match fitness.
MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES
Steve Wilson: "Given that they're second in the league and unbeaten in 37 home matches, there seems to be a lot of negativity about Jose Mourinho's Manchester United.
"Is anyone at Old Trafford really surprised if United aren't the most thrilling team in the league - or even the city? When they appointed Mourinho it was because he's a winner, not because he's an entertainer.
"How Newcastle would love to win something. Their roll of honour over the last few decades reads like an entry from Phileas Fogg's diary as he went Around the World in Eighty Days: The Inter-Cities Fairs Cup, the Anglo-Italian Cup, the Texaco Cup and the Intertoto Cup.
"At least with Rafael Benitez at the helm, and with a takeover a possibility, Newcastle have what is - after silverware - football's next most-prized asset: hope."
WHAT THE MANAGERS SAY
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho on the return of Paul Pogba: "I can say now because he's back - I don't like to speak while he's injured - you can clearly see there is a Manchester United this season before Paul's injury and after Paul's injury.
"There are qualities in our football, qualities that influence our approach in matches, with Pogba and without Pogba. Simple as that."
Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez: "We are a newly-promoted club that has to settle down in the Premier League.
"We have a young squad, so it's a learning process for everyone and losing some games is part of the process.
"Hopefully we can stop that this weekend, but we know it has to be like this. We have to think that the target is to stay in the Premier League, then after try to go as high as we can in the table."
Newcastle will be well organised but it will just be a question of whether Manchester United can break them down.
Rafa Benitez's side will make it difficult for them but there is only one outcome.
Lawro's full predictions v actor Will Ferrell
Manchester United have lost just one of their last 32 league games against Newcastle at Old Trafford (W22, D9), with the sole defeat coming in December 2013 when Yohan Cabaye scored the only goal.
The Magpies have lost this fixture 84 times in all competitions, more than against any other side in their history.
The Red Devils are the only side in the five major European leagues yet to concede a top-flight goal at home this season.
They are unbeaten in 22 league games at Old Trafford (W12, D10), winning the last six without conceding a goal.
The last time Manchester United won seven consecutive home league games without conceding was between December 2009 and March 2010.
Jose Mourinho's side have lost two of their last three games in the Premier League, as many as in the previous 37 combined.
They have scored a league-high total of 12 goals in the final 15 minutes of games this season.
After scoring 11 goals in his first 10 games for Manchester United, Romelu Lukaku has gone seven games without a goal, registering just five shots on target in this period.
Lukaku has been directly involved in nine goals in eight Premier League appearances against Newcastle United (five goals, four assists).
Antonio Valencia is set to play his 300th Premier League game. The only South American with more appearances is Peruvian Nolberto Solano (302).
Valencia's first Premier League appearance came against Newcastle, in Wigan's 2-1 defeat on Tyneside in August 2006.
The Magpies have won one of their last six league games (D2, L3) and have lost their last two matches.
Rafael Benitez could become the first manager to win Premier League away games at Old Trafford with three different clubs, having done so with Liverpool and Chelsea.
This will the the first managerial meeting between Benitez and Jose Mourinho since August 2007. Benitez has lost five Premier League games as a manager against Mourinho teams - he has only endured more defeats against Alex Ferguson (eight).
Conversely, Benitez has won five competitive matches as a manager versus Mourinho - only Pep Guardiola has a better record, with eight.
Most probable score: 2-0 Probability of draw: 15%
Probability of home win: 78% Probability of away win: 7%
SAM (Sports Analytics Machine) is a super-computer created by @ProfIanMcHale at the University of Liverpool that is used to predict the outcome of football matches.
After an early scare from Magpies, a satisfying OT win. Jose played his top guns, and our noisy neighbours continue with their relentless run. But that awful goalmouth slip by Lindelof does him no favours. Is he becoming a dud, after all the transfer hooha?
Five reasons why Zlatan has been missed...
Zlatan Ibrahimovic is in Manchester United's match-day squad for the first time this season after suffering a cruciate knee ligament injury in April- BBC Sport picks out five reasons why fans have missed him.
Separate names with a comma.