Posts Tagged ‘Manuel Pellegrini’

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So that’s the end of the meaningless friendlies for the time being. There now follows what, for England at least, will probably be a meaningless tournament. Having beaten Nigeria and Costa Rica both by a scoreline of 2-0 England still haven’t quite grasped the point of these friendly/warm-up matches.

The Germans have them down to a fine art. They spend most of their time outside of tournaments being rubbish. Joachim Löw has drilled it into his players that they must give the impression, to every other coach, that they are now reasonably easy to beat. They must play as though the days when they used to win everything are long gone and the team is now going through a transition which they may or may not come out of positively. (more…)

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Manchester United have bought Diogo Dalot from Porto. He is a 19 year-old right wing back who is also comfortable on the left and in midfield so, on this basis and unless he is exceptional, he is one for the future.

It is expected that he will be used to provide cover for the wing back position. He has been at the club for around two minutes and speaks fluent English.

Antonio Valencia is 33. He used to be a half decent winger until he broke his leg and became nervous about taking on defenders. He was, consequently, shifted back into the right wing back position at which he isn’t very good. (more…)

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It started, more or less, with Unai Emery getting the Arsenal gig. The club wanted somebody who could match, or better, Arséne Wenger’s achievements during his last few years in the job. They certainly got that. Emery is adept at getting his clubs into the top four and has been known to actually win the Europa League on more than one occasion.

Hold on to your hats you Gooners, it’s going to be a roller-coaster ride full of “been there, done that” and déjà vu. Unai Emery will deliver one of the trophies Wenger failed to deliver but which will it be? Our money’s on Big Vase. (more…)

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José Mourinho wants, at some stage. to manage Portugal. He is quick, however, to point out that the position is still some way in the future as he has more energy for his club job now than ever before.

Pep Guardiola is still young, or so he assures us. This was pointed out by him when stating that he too would quite like to manage at country level in the future. He doesn’t stipulate which country probably because his country, in his own mind, isn’t yet a country.

Never mind, he would probably still have a few options were he to decide to make the move into the semi-retirement home which is international football management. (more…)

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So the Champion’s League final was contested between two teams who, between them, had won almost a third of the total Champion’s Leagues ever held!

For Real Madrid it was another chance to make history. Last season they became the first team to successfully defend the title since the competition was rebranded from the old European Cup. This season they have become the first team to reach three consecutive finals on two occasions.

Between 1956 and 1960 they reached the final of the European Cup for five consecutive years, winning it every time, so it is no wonder that this trophy is considered to be their favourite! (more…)

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Arsenal’s powers-that-be who are, apparently, Ivan Gazidis, Sven Mislintat and Raul Sanllehi and not, as we thought, Arséne Wenger, have decided that Unai Emery is the man to succeed the one we naturally assumed was God at the club.

Unai, (no relation to Dick as far as we are aware), brings with him a wealth of experience in winning the Europa league, having done so three times with Sevilla, so Arsenal could really have done with him last season

Apparently he likes to do things in threes as he finished third in La Liga on three occasions when with Valencia behind guess which other two? Yes, you’re probably right. (more…)

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The result was fitting, if not entirely fair. City, to be honest, were the better team on the night and certainly looked the more likely winners. However theirs is a problem similar to that of Manchester United in that they don’t turn enough chances into goals.

It could be argued that Manchester United deserved the point if only for their stout defending, no mean achievement given that three of their four first choice centre backs are out injured. (more…)

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“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us…………”

And so it goes on. This extract, as learned readers will know, is taken from “A Tale of Two Cities” by Charles Dickens. In some ways, it describes quite well the period between Louis van Gaal being told to do one and José Mourinho being welcomed into the spider’s web which masquerades as the manager’s office at Manchester United. (more…)

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When these two managers were appointed by their current clubs it was widely expected, particularly in Manchester, that the top two positions in the Premier League would be contested between them.

Obviously, this view would not have been the case in parts of London or Liverpool but, generally, it was the concensus in the frozen, rainy wastelands of Manchester.

The facts have proven to be quite different. They have proven, for one thing, that even some of the best managers cannot just take over at a club and immediately turn them into champions. (more…)

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Why is it that a new manager coming into a club can often achieve excellent results with exactly the same players who were responsible for the previous manager being fired?

On the flip side of that, why is it that a new manager coming into a club can often achieve nothing with the same players or even after adding a few of his own?

The answers to these questions are not as complicated as you might think. (more…)