Authors Posts by Francesca Ceciarini

Francesca Ceciarini

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Former Chelsea coach and player Ray Wilkins admitted that seeing Nemanja Matic moving from Stamford Bridge to Old Trafford annoyed him last summer:
“I’m annoyed he’s [Nemanja Matic] been allowed to leave Stamford Bridge,” Wilkins told Sky Sports about the Serbian signing for Manchester United.

Wilkins is also concerned about N’Golo Kante’s fitness, since the French midfielder – that made the 30-man shortlist for the Ballon d’Or– picked up an injury while on duty with France in this international break:

Kante has injured himself the other night with his thigh, we don’t know if he will be playing at the weekend.¨

The Serbian midfielder, however, has been one of José Mourinho‘s best performers in this start of the season, with United topping the table with only two points lost at Stoke City‘s stadium back in September:

“Matic for me is the best holding midfield player, one of the best in the world anyway. I’m very sad that he’s left.”

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Italy's head coach Antonio Conte with midfielder Andrea Pirlo during the training section at Renzo Barbera stadium in Palermo, Sicily island, Italy, 09 October 2014. Italy and Azerbaijan will play the Uefa Euro 2016 qualifying soccer match in Palermo on 10 October 2014. A

After announcing his retirement from played football Andrea Pirlo is considering some options about his future.

Speaking to Italian outlet La Gazzetta dello Sport, the current New York City FC star didn’t rule out the idea to become Antonio Conte‘s assistant:

“My future, I don’t know yet. I will return to Italy in December,” the Italian football legend claimed.

“An assistant to Conte? People are saying that. I have my ideas but I need time to decide.”

Conte and Pirlo already worked together at Juventus and in the Italian national team.

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Chelsea midfielder N’Golo Kantè was included in the 30-man Ballon d’Or shortlist.

The French star, who was voted as best PFA Premier League player last season, is in good company along with some world football top players.

The Blues midfielder is among the first names to appear on the list, along with Real Madrid stars Marcelo and Luka Modric, former Barcelona striker and now PSG star Neymar and Juventus forward Paulo Dybala.

The remaining 25 names on the shortlist will be announced at intervals throughout Monday with the final five released at 6.15pm.

Cristiano Ronaldo, anyway, remains the favourite to win the prestigious prize.

 

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Italy's head coach Antonio Conte with midfielder Andrea Pirlo during the training section at Renzo Barbera stadium in Palermo, Sicily island, Italy, 09 October 2014. Italy and Azerbaijan will play the Uefa Euro 2016 qualifying soccer match in Palermo on 10 October 2014. A

Italian football legend Andrea Pirlo, who this morning announced he will retire from football when his New York City contract expires in December, learnt a lot under current Chelsea boss Antonio Conte, who worked with him at Juventus and the Italian national team.

Speaking during an exclusive interview for Italian outlet Gazzetta dello Sport, the former Inter, Juventus and Milan midfielder claimed:

“His attention to detail is impressive,” he told about the Blues boss.

“He also manages to give you convincing explanations about things.

“One of his 20-minute video sessions is worth three days on the training ground”

“You immediately understand what it is you have to do.”

Speaking about Conte’s first season at Juventus, who ended with a title for the Bianconeri after ten years, Pirlo said:

“Over the year he improved, with his desire to win and doing everything to the best of his ability.

“He is one of the best, absolutely.”

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Reports claim Antonio Conte was furious with Chelsea board after failing to sign Fernando Llorente on transfer market deadline day because of a derisory bid to Swansea.

In fact, it seems the Blues directors only offered £ 5m to secure the Spanish striker services, but the Swans rejected the bid and preferred to sell Llorente to Spurs, who offered £ 11.5m.

Conte was really keen to sign the 32-year-old and it’s believed he was really upset after the deal was called off.

Llorente could have been a precious substitute of Alvaro Morata, who picked up a hamstring injury against Manchester City and will probably be out for the rest of the month.

 

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Former Juventus director Luciano Moggi – the man behind the big Italian football scandal Calciopoli, who was even banned to work in the football business for the rest of his life – claims Chelsea boss Antonio Conte would be perfect to replace Vincenzo Montella at AC Milan.

The Rossoneri have endured a poor start to the domestic campaign with three defeats in the first seven league game, they are currently sitting 7th in the Serie A table despite investing almost £ 200m in last summer transfer market.

Conte has been linked with a return to Italy despite winning the Premier League title in his first season with Chelsea and Moggi has backed the ex-Juve boss to be the perfect fit for the role at Milan:

Conte wants to return to Italy and Milan can be the ideal club for him,” Moggi told Tuttojuve.com

“If he were to win something with Chelsea this season too, his departure could well be possible.”

 

 

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According to rumours coming from Spain Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois put new deal’s negotiations with the Blues on hold because he’s considering a move to Real Madrid.

Merengues’ first-choice signing would be Manchester United’s David De Gea, Courtois has reportedly been identified as the ideal alternative, with Zinedine Zidane reportedly huge fan of the Belgian keeper.

This is the main reason why Courtois is currently refusing to put pen on paper on a new Chelsea deal, with the current one expiring in 2019.

It would be a return to the Spanish capital for the Belgian player, as he already played three seasons in Atletico Madrid on loan from Chelsea, from 2011 to 2014.

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Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata is among the seven players running for Premier League Player of the Month of September 2017.

The Spanish forward is in the race to receive the prize along with Manchester Citys Sergio Agüero and Kevin de Bruyne, Manchester United’s Romelu Lukaku, Newcastle’s James Lascelles, Brighton’s Pascal Gross,  Spurs’ Harry Kane. 

Fans can vote on Premier League website now to choose their favourite last month’s star among these in the official shortlist.

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Sky Sports pundit Danny Higginbotham thinks there will be more to come for Chelsea star Alvaro Morata with Eden Hazard now back fully fit after a broken ankle disrupted his start to the season.

The Spanish striker, however, is currently recovering from a hamstring injury he picked up one week ago in the clash against Manchester City, but according to Higginbotham the pair can be devastating for Chelsea when they will be both fully fit again:

“What we’ve got to remember as well is arguably Chelsea’s best player going forward, Hazard, he’s been missing for so many games.

“For Morata to get the goals that he’s got with, more often than not, Hazard not being in the team.

“Imagine what it might be like now with Hazard back in the team, giving him more assists.

“He’s been brilliant, he’s a clever player, he’s got great movement, gets in the right place at the right time.”

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Former Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti was sacked by Bayern Munich last week: the Italian coach didn’t meet the club expectations for the beginning of this season and ex Bavarian manager Jupp Heynckes, who won the treble with the German side in 2013, was appointed to take of the team until the end of the season.

Speaking about his experience in Germany and about his future Ancelotti revealed in which country he’s not keen to coach next:

Bayern Munich belong to the past. Sometimes it can happen to be sacked, there is nothing to be sorry for. I’ve always respected every player I’ve coached. As a manager I have to play 11 players and bench seven of them. It is up to the player and to the club to accept the manager’s decision.”

“I don’t know if I will return to Serie A or try another experience abroad. For sure I am not going to train in China.”

AC Milan boss Vincenzo Montella has recently – jokingly – revealed that Ancelotti can now become his assistant. Here’s how Ancelotti replied: “He could my assistant and vice-versa. We could coach one game each, we only have to find a team that will allow us to do it.”

Montella is on the brink of being sacked after 3 defeats in the first 7 Serie A games of the season, and next game will be the derby against Inter on Sunday 15, when the Italian championship will restart after international break.

Ancelotti was the first name the media mentioned as a possible Montella replacement, but the former Blues boss claimed he has no intention to coach again during the current season:

“I will remain on holiday for the next ten months, I don’t want to take any other job before June. I respect Montella, Di Francesco and Ventura, I hope they will win all the games until the end of the season. I still want to coach club teams not national teams.”

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