Tags Posts tagged with "Premier League"

Premier League

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Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has chosen his starting Xi for his Premier League team of the year.

Carragher named four Chelsea players: Cesar Azpilicueta, Marcos Alonso, N’Golo Kante and Eden Hazard: the choice was made considering last season and the first seven matches of the current Premier League.

In particular, Carragher explains Azpilicueta’s pick: “His Chelsea team play a slightly different system with three at the back” – he told the Telegraph – , “but Azpilicueta has to go in there as he is one of the best defenders in the Premier League.”

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Antonio Conte spoke ahead of the Crystal Palace away clash and claimed neither Alvaro Morata nor N’Golo Kante will be fit for the game after picking up hamstring injuries, as well as Danny Drinkwater, who has been recovering from a calf injury since the beginning of September:

“I hope to have Morata for the game with Roma next week,” Conte revealed.

“Drinkwater we have to wait, calf problems are not easy. With Kante we are going to do a scan next week to check his situation, his improving, he’s got an hamstring problem.

“It’s a big loss for us, you know very well how he is important for us, we don’t have another player with the same characteristics.

“We are not lucky in this period, we have only Bakyoko and Fabregas available, we have to find different solutions, we have to adapt some defenders as midfielders, or use Scott or Ampadu in the first team.

Kante will be out around 20 days, more or less, for this reason we have to do another scan after one week, to understand the situation very well, to see the improvement, he’s a big loss and it’s a big problem for us.

“For sure we have to approach these seven games without him, we have Fabregas and Bakayoko, then youngsters, we have to find a solution, it will be very difficult to play with Fabregas and Bakayoko for seven games in a row, of course we have to hope to have no more injuries in these games.

“I think an injury can happen during the international break but not only there, for example Morata picked up a injury with Man City, we have to hope they come back in good physical conditions.

“I guess now it’s important to be focused on the present, on the next game, to do our job in the best way to put all our best.”

About his future, Conte said:

“I think that in the last weeks I’ve read wrong things, in the interview I gave I just said that one day, in the future, I would like to go back to Italy.

“I know my position, I have two more years of contract with Chelsea, I like to work here, I like to work with my players, I like the great feeling I got with the fans. My family now stays here and my daughter is going to school here in Cobham, I want to clarify this.

“When a coach starts the work with the club for sure he hopes to stay for a long time and to build something important with the club. Our job is very difficult because everything can change in one day.”

Andrea Pirlo announced he will retire from his footballer career in the end of the year and speculations claimed he could end up working as Conte’s assistant:

“I know that Andrea decided to retire and finish his career in December with NYCFC, I think in this moment he doesn’t know his future and what he wants to do once he’s finished with his career,” the Italian manager stated.

On adapting David Luiz as a midfielder during Kante’s absence he said:

“We are speaking to adapt a player – David Luiz- that is very important as a central defender, because for me David is important as a central defender, if I can I prefer not to change a lot, because if you find a system, you can lose something, to play with three central midfielders could be an option, but I don’t want to change a lot, but if there is the necessity I am ready to do this and I am also ready to give chances to young players, like Ampadu or Scott.

Continuing to speak about next games, Conte said:

“We must be focused to work, we must be focused to do our jobs, the players and I, I think this must be the most important thing for us. Some issues are not important, now it’s important to look at the next game.

Bathsuayi started against Burnley, Qarabag, so he has no problem to start other games.”

Speaking about Kenedy, who last summer ended the Asian tour in advance for some controversial posts on the social media, he said:

“I think his mind must be focused on the pitch, not on social media, I think my task is to help him to find the right way, not the wrong way. I explained it to him, I am sure he understood, I think he has to continue to work like he’s doing, social media are not the most important thing in his career. he’s a very talented player, I see him very well, he’s got a good prospect to become an important player for Chelsea, he has to continue this way, I am sure his chance will come.”

Speaking about academy players to be insert in the first team, Conte said:

“We tried to do this last season, don’t forget that a lot of players from the academy players played in different games, they will play a lot in Carabao Cup, I think they will have the opportunity to play for Chelsea.”

And,finally, about Andreas Christensen and Charlie Musonda’s development:

“I think he can be a good example that, after two years on loan and after a good experience with Borussia Mönchengladbach, he’s becoming an important player with Chelsea. Charlie has to continue this way, we have only three number 10 and usually we play with two, he’s a talented player and I am sure he will have a good career, if his attention is more on the pitch and not on the social media.”

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Crystal Palace is facing major injury problems ahead of the Premier League clash vs Chelsea.

Not only strikers Benteke and Wickham are not available for the game, but, on the other end of the field also Wayne Hennessey is a major doubt for the Eagles.

The goalkeeper picked up a knock with Wales in a World Cup qualifier and so veteran Julian Speroni could be part of the starting XI, making is first league start in 18 months.

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Chelsea manager Antonio Conte is considering to place a bid for ex-Genoa youngster Richmond Boakye, who currently plays for Red Star Belgrade.

The 24-year-old striker will face Arsenal next week in the Europa League, with Chelsea scouts reportedly set to watch the Ghana striker in action.

Boakye spent last season with Italian side Latina, before joining the Serbian giants in January: Boakye has scored 15 goals from 22 appearances so far.

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Former Chelsea manager Claudio Ranieri believes Antonio Conte wants more signings at Stamford Bridge and is not considering a return to Italy next summer, despite rumors linking him with AC Milan.

Ranieri, who’s currently in charge at French side Nantes, told La Gazzetta dello Sport: “The Premier League remains the best and I have not been convinced of Conte’s desire to return home. Maybe he was expecting a different transfer window but for a few years, Abramovich has not paid crazy prices”.

“Manchester City and Manchester United on the other hand have made big buys so I can imagine that for Antonio to fight on more fronts with the same players is more tiring.”

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Marcos Alonso still hopes to be included in the Spain national team for the 2018 World Cup in Russia, but he knows he has to perform well and win some titles with Chelsea if he wants to get that chance.

From the moment I arrived here, I have felt great playing as a starter,” – Alonso told Cadena Ser Radio – “We had a great season and we deserved the Premier league title. I’ve continued my development at Chelsea and I have to continue to work in order to improve. It’s not going to be easy to win the Premier League again,” he said. “There are many teams that can opt for the title. We saw it two years ago that even a team like Leicester can compete and win the league. The two Manchester teams have strengthened their sides very well. Tottenham have a solid group that has worked together for some time, Liverpool have a strong side. We will fight in each game to give ourselves a chance to be there in the battle.”

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Chelsea are really concerned for N’Golo Kantè fitness after the French midfielder picked up a hamstring injury while away on international duty with France.

Kante was forced off in the 34th minute of France’s victory over Bulgaria on Saturday night and has now been assessed by Blues’ medical department.

With early predictions putting his absence at two to three weeks, Kante will surely miss next Saturday’s Premier League clash against Crystal Palace.

 The Blues are yet to confirm his exact injury or put an official timescale on how long he will miss.

However, Kante’s injury is thought to be worse than that of team-mate Alvaro Morata, who limped off during Manchester City game a couple of weeks ago but is working to try to come back in the Champions League clash against AS Roma next week.

The fear of Chelsea is that Kante, a key-man for Conte’s team, could miss all the six matches scheduled for October and could come back only in November, on time for Manchester United on the 5th or after another international break due for mid-month.

 

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King Antonio Conte celebrating last season title at Stamford Bridge © Francesca Ceciarini

Former Chelsea and current Nantes manager Claudio Ranieri has praised Antonio Conte after several speculations linked the Italian boss with a move back to Italian Serie A next season.

Ranieri, in an exclusive interview for La Gazzetta dello Sport, said: “The Premier League remains the best and I have not been convinced of Conte’s desire to return home. 

“Maybe he was expecting a different transfer window but for a few years, Abramovich has not paid crazy prices.

“Manchester City and Manchester United on the other hand have made big buys so I can imagine that for Antonio to fight on more fronts with the same players is more tiring.”

Ranieri, who spent four seasons in West London with the Blues, won the Premier League title at Leicester City in 2015/16 campaign.

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Borussia Dortmund striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has admitted the German side gave him the chance to leave the club in the summer, after being tracked by AC Milan, Real Madrid and Premier League champions Chelsea.

The Gabon striker told Sport Bild“There was a time in the window when I could have changed. We [Aubameyang and the Dortmund board] agreed on this together in all openness but nothing happened,”

“I have always felt very comfortable in Dortmund, in the team and at BVB, and that is true today, too. BVB is my family!”

Borussia Dortmund are currently leading the Bundesliga table with 19 points earned from 7 games so far.

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Eden Hazard spoke following Belgium’s 4-0 win against Cyprus in the World Cup Qualifiers, a game in which he scored a brace.

The 26-year-old Chelsea star is confident after recovering from a serious ankle injury suffered last season, despite admitting he’s not fully fit at all.

When asked about next game against Crystal Palace, Hazard claimed: “I don’t know, I missed football for three months [and] it’s not easy to come back after a big injury but I did,”

“I worked out during the summer. I just want to play football. I will miss some games, I will play bad for some games. I just want to play football and try to bring the best of me.”

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