Beating Chelsea Is Important For Arsenal – Wenger

ArsenalArsène Wenger says Arsenal have the chance to show they have made progress by beating Chelsea on Sunday.

The Gunners have not claimed a victory against their London rivals in the Premier League since their 5-3 win at Stamford Bridge in October 2011.

However, they beat the Blues in the Community Shield last August and Wenger says they further demonstrate their progress this weekend.

“It is another one where we can show we have moved forward,” he said.

“It is another game where people look at us and see how we behave because, even if Chelsea are not in the best position, you look at their squad.

“It is a big game because of the quality of players on the pitch and it has a big importance to us because we play at Emirates Stadium and we know it will be important to win these types of games.

“We have certainly proved our battling potential [this season] through big solidarity, through great togetherness and as well because we are ambitious and we have more experience than in the past,” he continued.

“One of the advantages of having experienced players is that they know that sometimes it’s just about battling and not always only about playing well.”

Gabriel and Santi Cazorla were both sent off at Chelsea in September, and Wenger says keeping cool will be key in this weekend’s game.

“We are convinced that our records against big opponents is linked with discipline,” he said, adding that the team “were a bit unlucky due to the decisions of the referee”.

“Overall, over the longer distance, I believe that we have a very strong record on the discipline front in the Premier League. We want to maintain it.”

Wenger Praises Arsenal’s Solidarity In Stoke Draw

ArsenalArsenal manager, Arsene Wenger, praised the character of his side as they drew 0-0 in a battle with Stoke City on Sunday afternoon.

The Gunners moved back to the top of the Barclays Premier League table on goal difference as they extended their unbeaten run to four league matches.

The manner of Arsenal’s performance earning the hard-fought point at the Britannia Stadium, generally pleased Wenger, although the manager was frustrated that his side “lacked the final ball” in attack.

“It was an old-fashioned Stoke battle because they made the game very physical.

“The crowd was up for it, the players were up for it and they went for a very direct game and we had to show a physical response, solidarity, fighting spirit, togetherness.

“They were really up for it, they tried from the first to the last minute and looking at the history we have here, it is a positive result,” he said in his post-match press conference.

Speaking to Arsenal Player, he said, “I thought we were tested on our capacity to fight, on our capacity to have a great togetherness, to respond and we responded well.

“I’m of course a bit unhappy because we like to score goals and we didn’t score today.

“We maybe lacked the final ball, the creative side of our game. But they made a fight of it and we had to respond.

“Compared to the history we have here, it’s a positive result. Compared to our desire to win the game, it’s not a positive result.

“But overall, compared to the results of all of the other teams who play at the top, it’s still a positive result.

“There’s a charisma in this team, a togetherness that comes out with a fighting attitude,” Wenger added. “[We are] people who really want to do well and that came out again today.

“I’m very proud of that and I think the club should be proud of that.”

Wenger, Klopp Comment On 3-3 Draw At Anfield

Wenger-Arsenal-LiverpoolArsenal Manager, Arsene Wenger, admits his team should have picked all three points in the thrilling 3-3 draw against Liverpool at Anfield.

Arsenal led 3-2 heading into injury time, but Joe Allen struck a dramatic late equaliser for Liverpool, although the result kept the gunners top of the Premier League.

Wenger commended his team for the fight in what he described as one of the most entertaining games of the season.

However, the Liverpool boss, Jurgen Klopp, insisted that his side were good value for a point after the draw with league leaders, Arsenal.

Klopp’s men took the lead twice through two Roberto Firmino goals, but were pegged back by Aaron Ramsey and Olivier Giroud in what was a pulsating opening 25 minutes.

Arsenal’s French striker (Giroud) looked to have wrapped up the points when firing his second on 55 minutes, but Allen, who had only been on the pitch for eight minutes, struck as the clock ticked into injury time.

Real Madrid Sack Rafa Benitez, Appoint Zidane

benitezSpanish giant, Real Madrid have sacked their manager, Rafa Benitez after six months in charge.

He has been replaced by former player Zinedine Zidane.

The Club’s President, Florentino Perez, reportedly dismissed the Spaniard after an emergency board meeting on Monday and made the announcement at a press conference at the Bernabeu later in the evening.

“The board has taken a difficult decision – especially for me, to sack Rafael Benítez – a great professional and a magnificent person,” he said

Confirming that Zinedine Zidane would be taking over, he said “I’m very proud because I know that for Zidane, the word ‘impossible’ doesn’t exist.”

Zinedine Zidane, immediately after the announcement, made a short speech as Real Madrid’s new head coach.

“I thank the club and the president for giving me the opportunity to train the club. It’s the best club in the world and the best fanbase.

“I want to do my very best to ensure the club has a trophy at the end of the season. Tomorrow is when the work starts.

“It’s an emotional day, even more emotional than the day I signed for the club,” he said.

Benitez took over the Real Madrid job from Carlo Ancelotti in June 2015 but they are third in the standings, four points behind leaders Atletico Madrid, after suffering three league defeats this season, including a 4-0 home loss to arch-rivals Barcelona.

The team showed great fighting spirit to earn a 2-2 draw away to Valencia on Sunday despite being reduced to 10-men and that added little to their fortune on the table.

The former Chelsea and Liverpool coach endured a tough time since taking over in June.

Benítez also took part of the blame for Madrid’s expulsion from the Copa del Rey after fielding an ineligible player against Cadiz as the club lost the chance for a major silverware.

Rafael Benítez is the 11th coach to have been dismissed by Florentino Perez, who is currently in his second term at the Bernabeu.

Frenchman Zidane, asides being a Madrid legend, has also been the coach of Real Madrid’s reserve team, Castilla.

Real have been European champions 10 times and have been constantly rated the most valuable club in the world.

Ranieri, Klopp Comment On Liverpool’s Victory

Liverpool-FC-and-Leicester-CityLeicester City manager, Claudio Ranieri, says Liverpool deserved to win after Christian Benteke ended the League leaders 10-match unbeaten run.

It was Leicester’s second league defeat of the season and the first time they failed to score with Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez, who have scored 29 of Leicester’s 37 league goals this season substituted in the second half.

Meanwhile, Liverpool manager, Jurgen Klopp, is pleased to have ended Leicester’s unbeaten run which also ended his side three-game winless streak.

Klopp praised his team’s performance for holding on to a crucial victory that could see them chasing a top four finish again.

The Liverpool boss is hoping the players can continue with such display when they face Sunderland at the stadium of light on Wednesday, December 30.

Man Utd, City Play Goalless Draw

manu--cityManchester United and Manchester City, on Sunday, played out a goalless draw in their derby at Old Trafford.

With the result, City returned to the top of the English Premier League, ahead of Arsenal, on goal difference.

United and City played out a dour 0-0 draw at old trafford that was short on entertainment as well as chances with both sides cancelling each other out.

Only ‘Bad Luck’

Manchester United Manager, Louis van Gaal, claimed his side controlled the game against City for 90 minutes, saying only ‘bad luck’ prevented them from claiming all three points.

City boss, Manuel Pellegrini, is however happy with his team’s defensive performance.

Meanwhile, Tottenham’s Harry Kane returned to goal scoring form with a hat-trick, as Spurs came from behind to thrash Bournemouth five goals to one.

Also, Sunderland moved off the bottom of the League table, following a three nil win over north-east rivals and fellow strugglers, Newcastle. Liverpool and Southampton played out a 1-1 draw.

Mourinho Praises Players’ Improvement As Klopp Rues Sturridge Setback

mourinhoChelsea’s manager, Jose Mourinho, believes that the mood is improving at Stamford Bridge after two good results in the last week, claiming his side’s key players are starting to improve.

The blues have made a lacklustre start to the defence of their Premier League title and also lost their second Champion’s League pool game at Porto.

However, they returned to winning ways with a 2-0 win over Aston Villa at Stamford Bridge last Saturday before a 0-0 draw at Dynamo Kiev, a match Mourinho thinks they were unlucky not to win.

The defending champions now face a tough trip to fourth-placed West Ham in the Premier League.

It is, however, a different story for Liverpool as manager, Jurgen Klopp says England striker Daniel Sturridge continues to be a major fitness concern after revealing the he must undergo another scan on his knee.

Sturridge, who is yet to play under Klopp, damaged his knee in a training ground collision with Jordon Ibe last Friday and that prevented him from lining up against either Tottenham Hotspur or Rubin Kazan.

It was initially hoped that he would be available for Sunday’s home game with Southampton but, Klopp cast doubt on whether the 25-year-old would be fit enough for selection.

Liverpool And Jurgen Klopp In Advance Talks

liverpoolLiverpool have confirmed that talks with Jurgen Klopp over the vacant manager’s position at Anfield are progressing well.

It has emerged Klopp is the club’s preferred candidate to replace Brendan Rodgers, ahead of former Real Madrid and Chelsea boss, Carlo Ancelotti, and the Reds hope to have him in place by Friday.

If he takes over at Anfield, he is expected to bring his former Dortmund Assistant, Bosnian Zeljko Buvac, with him.

Buvac is known as ‘the brain’ due to his tactical knowledge, and Klopp has described him as a “master of every form of training”.

Klopp could also bring another of his former Dortmund coaches with him, Peter Krawietz, who never played professional football, and specialises as a video analyst.

Liverpool: Ancelotti Or Klopp To Manage At Anfield

LiverpoolLess than 24 hours after Brendan Rodgers was sacked by Premier League club, Liverpool, speculation is already rife that either Juergen Klopp or Carlo Ancelotti would be the new manager at Anfield.

Liverpool terminated the contract of Rodgers on Sunday, just eight games into the English Premier League season, with the five-time European champions languishing in 10th place.

The announcement came three hours after the team had drawn 1-1 at Everton in the Merseyside derby, leaving them with only three wins from their first eight league games this term.

Klopp has been without a club since he left Borussia Dortmund at the end of last season, while Ancelotti also left Real Madrid after finishing second best to Barcelona in La Liga and the Champions League.

Former manager, Rodgers, who took over in June 2012, led Liverpool to second place in the 2013-14 campaign, when they led the title race with three games to go, but lost out to Manchester City.

Iheanacho Scores Last-Gasp Winner As City Beat Palace

iheanachoNigerian youth international, Kelechi Iheanacho, scored a last-gasp winner as Manchester City edged Crystal Palace on Saturday to maintain their 100 per cent start to the 2015/2016 premier league season.

Iheanacho’s late goal helped Manchester City beat Crystal Palace 1-0 in their English Premier League match at Selhurst Park.

Super Eagles forward, Odion Ighalo also scored the winner for Watford in their 1-nil win over Swansea City.

Premier League Champions, Chelsea lost for the 3rd time this season with Stephen Naismith inspiring Everton to a 3-1 win at Goodison Park.

In other results, Arsenal beat Stoke City 2-0, Norwich City beat Bournemouth 3-1, West Brom and Southampton battled to a goalless draw, while Manchester United beat Liverpool 3-1 in the day’s last game.

Wenger Confirms Mertesacker, Koscielny’s Absence Against Newcastle

wengerArsenal manager, Arsene Wenger, says first-choice central defensive pair, Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny remain doubtful for the Gunners’ trip to Newcastle on Saturday.

Illness and a back inujry prevented the pair from playing in Monday’s goalless draw against Liverpool, with Callum Chambers and Gabriel Paulista filling in for the absent duo.

The gunners have picked just four points from their opening three Premier League games, and Wenger put the club’s slow start down to a lack of match fitness.

Arsenal have won seven in a row against Newcastle United and Wenger is confident his side can overcome what he expects to be a tough match to improve the streak to eight.

Rodgers Pleased With New Signings

RodgersLiverpool Manager, Brendan Rodgers is optimistic that the new players signed by the club will help the team compete for major titles this season despite the record sale of Raheem Sterling.

The club have already signed Adam Lallana and are on the verge of adding Aston Villa top hit man Christian Benteke to their line up.

Rodgers believes Sterling’s move will not affect the team and described the 20-year-old as a talented footballer.

Aston villa striker Christian Benteke has been strongly linked with a move to Liverpool, who now have money in their pocket following the sale of Sterling to Manchester City in a deal worth up to 49 million pounds.

The Reds are closing in on Benteke who has a 32.5 million pound buyout clause in his contract.

However Aston Villa manager, Tim Sherwood reiterated the club’s stance that he would not be leaving unless the clause was activated.