Tags Posts tagged with "Premier League"

Premier League

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Chelsea defender Gary Cahill is happy after Chelsea secured another win, staying just one point below the leading trio in the Premier League table:

We were aware of them [Arsenal, Liverpool and Man City winning yesterday],” Cahill told Sky Sports.

It’s too early to talk about winning the league, but we don’t want the gap to get too big, so this is good.

“That’s where we want to be [at the top], be amongst it. I can’t see anybody running away with it, so we want to be up there.”

Cahill believes the Blues showed character to defeat Saints and that it showed their hard work is paying off since a wake-up call against Arsenal last month.

We showed another side of ourselves today, a bit of character, we dug in.

“We knew earlier in the season we were letting goals in. [And] we get the rewards by working hard.

“That is the mentality of the players: to dig in. Four wins in the league, four clean sheets, we go on.”

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Southampton hosted Chelsea on Sunday evening, trying to prolong their unbeaten home run, having won their last home against Burnley with a scoreline of 3-0.

Chelsea on the other hand are also trying to extend their unbeaten run at the St Mary’s stadium, having won their last three Premier League games without conceding.

Well Chelsea went into the lead in the 6th minute following an Eden Hazard stunning individual goal after being teed up by Victor Moses, beating his man in the box and hitting past the legs of Fraser Foster. After the goal, Chelsea let Southmapton dictate play but penetration remained a huge task for the Saints as they only had 1 shot on target compared to the Blues 3, Costa came close to doubling Chelsea but could only shoot straight at Southampton goalkeeper,after that there wasn’t mucch action as Chelsea took their 1 nil lead into the half-time.

The second half started the same way the first half ended,with Southampton getting the lion share of the possession but still couldn’t penetrate a resilient Chelsea, as the Blues doubled their lead as Diego Costa hit an audacious effort from outside the box in the 56th minute.

Southampton 0-2 Chelsea 

5′ Hazard 55′ Diego Costa 

Chelsea Hazard Diego Costa


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Southampton – Forster, Martina, Fonte (c), Van Dijk, Bertrand, Romeu, Clasie, Davis, Tadic, Redmond, Austin

Subs: Taylor, McQueen, Yoshida, Hojbjerg, Ward-Browse, Boufal, Olomola.

Manager: Claude Puel

Chelsea – Courtois; Azpilicueta, David Luiz, Cahill (c); Moses, Kante, Matic, Alonso; Pedro, Diego Costa, Hazard.

Subs: Begovic, Ivanovic, Terry, Chalobah, Oscar, Willian, Batshuayi

Manager: Antonio Conte

Venue: St. Mary’s stadium

Kick-Off: 4pm BST

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Southampton supporter and Sky Sport Italia bet advisor, now exiled in Tuscany, Adam Grapes replied to our questions regarding today’s clash and team news before the kick-off at Saint Mary’s stadium.

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte claimed yesterday that Saints play offensive football, this is the reason why he really likes Claude Puel.

“I wouldn’t really call our football offensive, – Grapes said – but at the same time it isn’t negative! Perhaps the best way to describe it is steady with the potential to be positive. So far we have only scored 11 goals in 9 matches, but we are waiting for the explosion!”.

Moreover, Matt Le Tissier revealed that both Eden Hazard and Diego Costa won’t shine in the clash at St.Mary’s as “Virgil van Dijk is the perfect player to deal with Diego Costa” and Cuco Martina could win the challenge against the Belgian star.

Anyway, Grapes has doubts about it: “You cannot disagree with Le God too much, but I’m not sure if Martina against Hazard is a particularly even contest”.

“I would have preferred to see Cedric Soares in the line-up – he added – but he isn’t yet available after his injury. Martina is a decent player, but I fear that Hazard will give him a difficult afternoon.

“Van Dijk, together with Fonte, are possibly the best centre back pairing in the Premier League, but against Costa they cannot let their guard down for even one second”.

Grapes is a football specialist really close to Italy and italian football, then we asked him a point of view about new manager Antonio Conte.

Will Chelsea improve under Conte and his well-known ‘idea of football’?

“I think their last home match against Manchester United was a sign that Conte is on the right track with his team – he claimed – I found it ridiculous the rumour of his possible departure a couple of weeks ago, the typical story to fill up a boring international week!”.

“At the end of the day, his team has lost only two games this season against Arsenal and Liverpool. His squad is reasonably strong”,

About striker Michy Batshuayi: “I believe that Batshuayi would get into the starting line-up of virtually every other team in the Premier League and without any European commitments, Conte can concentrate on the league”.

chelsea batshuayi

Chelsea and Southampton are reportedly set to fight in the race to reach the ‘European spots’ until the end of the season.

“I believe that Chelsea will not be just fighting for the European spots, but fighting for the title. It’s already pretty crowded at the top of the league, and a winning run at the right point of the season could open the door to any of the contenders”.

When asked about the Saints, he added: “Southampton? Of course Seville will win the Europa League as they always do, so no Champions League football for us next season!”.

“I would like to see us maybe get into Europe via a Cup win, as over the past few seasons we have neglected a bit these tournaments. The League Cup draw was unkind to us, but we beat Arsenal in this tournament a couple of seasons ago. We’ve done it before and it can be done again !

Who is the most talented player in Southampton squad at this stage? According to Grapes, is recently signed winger Soufiane Boufal.

“Hopefully Soufiane Boufal, our summer signing from Lille. He is just in the phase of being incorporated into the team after an injury and great things are expected of him.

“Hopefully his goal against Sunderland in the League Cup last Wednesday will be the start of something special!”.


Last but not least, also former Chelsea midfielder Oriol Romeu deserves a mention.

Grapes ended: “Maybe he isn’t our most talented player but has been fantastic for us this season in his role as a defensive centre midfielder. Hopefully today he will put in another decent performance to show his old club what they are missing!”.



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Barcelona are lining up a move to land Juventus winger and Chelsea loanee Juan Manuel Cuadrado to Camp Nou, according to Goal.

The Colombia international is currently spending his season in Turin after joining the Blues from Serie A side Fiorentina last year.

Cuadrado’s current ownership is esteemed around £30m, anyway the La Liga champions are said to be not willing to pay more than £18m.

It is understood Barcelona are still keeping tabs on Arsenal starlet Hector Bellerin, who is their main target.

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Former Liverpool midfielder Jamie Redknapp underlined how Chelsea star Eden Hazard changed his way of playing following Antonio Conte‘s decision to switch to a 3-4-3 formation, where the Belgium international can help the teammates as a an attacking-midfielder.

“Chelsea have changed their formation and Eden Hazard has been one of the big benefactors, – Redknapp told Sky Sports – Antonio Conte’s switch to a 3-4-3 has freed up the Belgian to go and play a more exciting role for the team and he’s responded with four goals – matching his total for all of last season”.

“When you play Hazard out on the left, he’s reliant on his team-mates getting the ball out to him on that flank and that’s not always easy for the midfield to do.

“If they can’t find him in space, in the right areas, it becomes difficult for both the player and the team, who are relying on him. But with Hazard playing almost as a No 10 now, in between the lines in a more central area off Diego Costa, it suits him”.

Then he added: “He’s got license to go left, to go right and against Manchester United he was phenomenal. I don’t think he had a point to prove against Jose Mourinho, or that playing against his old boss had anything to do with it.

“He’s just playing really well at the moment, loving his football and that shows in his confidence on the ball.”

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Southampton legend Matt Le Tissier is confident that the Saints could stop Antonio Conte’s side at St Mary’s stadium tomorrow.

“Virgil van Dijk is the perfect player to deal with Diego Costa – he told Sky Sports – He’s got all the right physical attributes to handle him, with strength and pace, and he’s also got the right temperament to not get wound up by him”.

“He’s been outstanding all season. Maybe he could have done better for Manchester City’s goal in letting Kelechi Iheanacho get the wrong side of him, but you’d be nit picking.”

Le Tissier, when asked about Hazard’s shape at this stage, added: “Eden Hazard is probably more of a worry for me than Costa and Cuco Martina will have to have a great game to stem his threat.

“However, he’ll have plenty of help. Oriol Romeu, Jordy Clasie and Steven Davis will sit in and protect the full-backs, so he’ll get that extra support when Hazard cuts inside onto his right foot.”

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Former Chelsea boss José Mourinho claimed that slow Henrikh Mkhitaryan‘s adaptation to Premier League football reminds him of the same issues that Willian had in 2013 when he signed for the Blues:

“I don’t like to speak about players from other clubs because I don’t want to be misinterpreted, but I don’t think he’ll mind,” the Portuguese said.

“A player who had a problem to play when he first arrived was Willian.

“He went through a process and then, after a few months, he became a top player. Then, when we won the championship, he was phenomenal and still is. That is just an example.”

Mourinho went on explaining the situation of the new Manchester United player:

“Sometimes this is what happens. It happens with defenders, but it is often easier for them to adapt than attackers. Some go straight to success and others it takes more time.

“In Micky’s case the process was interrupted by injury, which does not help the process of evolution.

“Being out for a month meant he has had to go through the process of getting match fit, then once he has that he needs the competitive level to do it.

“We believe in him and, sooner or later, there will be no problem.”

Read more: http://metro.co.uk/2016/10/28/jose-mourinho-henrikh-mkhitaryans-start-at-manchester-united-reminds-me-of-chelsea-star-willian-6221017/#ixzz4OPF6CczE

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Chelsea manager Antonio Conte had his say about the clash on the terraces between Chelsea and West Ham supporters in the EFL Cup Round Four at the Olympic Stadium last time out.

“Situations like the one that occurred at West Ham last Wednesday are never good – Conte admitted – We need to speak about this and to understand why it happened”.

“I’ve always said and remarked that the stadium atmosphere here in England is fantastic, so it’s a pity”.

It is understood that both sides condemned the riot occurred in occasion of the game.

An official statement from West Ham read: “West Ham United and London Stadium partners unreservedly condemn the behaviour of individuals involved in incidents during this evening’s fixture with Chelsea.

“Whilst quickly brought under control, the club, in line with its clear zero tolerance policy, will work closely with London Stadium 185, the Metropolitan Police Service and Chelsea to identify the individuals involved.

“Once identified, those found to have acted improperly will be banned from attending any West Ham United fixtures for life and we will request the courts serve banning orders to prevent these individuals attending any other football.”

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Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte has praised Southampton manager Claude Puel as they are both trying to bring a new and different idea of football in the Premier League. 

“Southampton are doing very well and passed through in the EFL Cup – the Italian manager told journalists at press conference today – They are a very strong team, I am watching so many games of them and I really like Puel because in every game he plays his idea of football”.

“They had so many chances to score against Manchester City last weekend, the performance was excellent” Conte added.

“It will be a very tough game for us but it can also be an important test to prove that we are a good team: anyway, this test is different because you play away with a team which has a good shape”. 

“When they attack they have so many players and we must pay attention to this situations – he ended – Looking for the details and preparing our team to play the game before, during the week. When you watch the game of the opponent you always try to find the right solutions”.


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