Give Egyptians something to celebrate – Elmohamady

Port-Gentil (Gabon) (AFP) – Ahmed Elmohamady knows what it takes to win the Africa Cup of Nations and the Hull City man is quietly confident that Egypt can go all the way again on their long-awaited return to the tournament.  Elmohamady is only 29 but the flying wing-back is a comparative veteran in a young Egypt squad taken to Gabon by the wily Hector Cuper.  He is also one of only four survivors from the side that won a third consecutive Cup of Nations in 2010 along with Ahmed Fathy, Mohamed Abdel-Shafi and veteran goalkeeper Essam El Hadary. That was the last time they made it to Africa’s biggest stage. But Egypt’s name alone garners respect in Africa and the presence of such a quartet, he says, can help propel the team to a record eighth Cup of Nations.  “The manager always says the one target is Continue reading "Give Egyptians something to celebrate – Elmohamady"

Egypt look to join Ghana in Cup of Nations quarters

Port-Gentil (Gabon) (AFP) – Seven-time champions Egypt face Ghana in Port-Gentil on Wednesday looking for the result that will see them join their opponents in qualifying for the Africa Cup of Nations quarter-finals. The Pharaohs need only draw the game, which kicks off at 8pm (1900 GMT), in the Gabonese port city to be certain of progressing to the last eight, although if Mali fail to beat Uganda they will be through anyway. Meanwhile, a win for Hector Cuper’s side would allow them to leapfrog the already-qualified Black Stars and advance as group winners. That might not be what they want, however — the group winners will remain in Port-Gentil for the quarter-finals while the runners-up must up sticks to Oyem in the north of the country. An awful pitch in Port-Gentil has had an adverse impact on the quality of the football played there and heavy rain in the Continue reading "Egypt look to join Ghana in Cup of Nations quarters"

Impatient Chinese chase football glory at all costs

Beijing (AFP) – European clubs Inter Milan, Aston Villa and Sochaux have had a high turnover of managers since Chinese takeovers, sparking fears that their trigger-happy new owners have little patience and no strategy. “Many buyouts are irrational and defy the laws of the market,” Zhou Jiming, a football analyst and director at the official China Sports Journal, told AFP.  “The majority of investors lack patience,” he said. That certainly appears to be the case with Aston Villa, currently under their third manager, after a takeover by Chinese businessman Tony Xia last June. Xia spent 38 million euros ($40 million) to hire Roberto Di Matteo as manager, hoping the 2012 Champions League winner would be able to lift Villa’s flagging fortunes. But Di Matteo was sacked just 11 games later and replaced by Steve Bruce. Meanwhile Inter Milan, who are owned by Chinese electronics retailer Suning, in November named Stefano Continue reading "Impatient Chinese chase football glory at all costs"

AEK 2-0 Asteras Tripolis

Good start for Jimenez

As I mentioned in my last post, rumours were floating around saying that Manolo Jimenez was on his way to Athens for his second stint in charge of AEK. The next day, those rumours turned out to be true as Jimenez signed a contract which will keep him with the team until at least the end of the season. Thankfully for both Jimenez himself as well as the team, the Spaniard’s first game in charge ended with a comfortable 2-0 win over a team that has given us a hard time these past couple seasons. Goals from both Pekhart and Mantalos (both now have five goals this season) were enough to seal the win though by all accounts it sounds like it was a solid team effort all around. Even players like Simoes and Johansson, players who have been having mediocre seasons compared to what we’ve
Continue reading "AEK 2-0 Asteras Tripolis"

Liverpool seek League Cup home comfort in Saints semi-final

Liverpool (AFP) – Liverpool’s formidable home record was meant to provide the platform for a tilt at three trophies this season -– but Saturday’s surprise 3-2 Premier League defeat by Swansea spoiled that idea. If Jurgen Klopp’s team are to overcome Southampton at Anfield in the second leg of a League Cup semi-final on Wednesday and reach Wembley, their defending will have to improve significantly. The shock of suffering their first defeat at Anfield in almost 12 months is still being felt by the club’s supporters, with a run of just two points won from the last nie available damaging Liverpool’s chances of landing a first English league title since 1990. But for the next few days the Merseysiders’ focus will be on cup football. The visit of Premier League rivals Southampton — who lead 1-0 from the first leg courtesy of Nathan Redmond’s goal — will be followed by Continue reading "Liverpool seek League Cup home comfort in Saints semi-final"

Celtic on verge of becoming history Bhoys

Glasgow (AFP) – Celtic stand on the verge of reaching a historic milestone when they return to league action on Wednesday. The runaway league leaders have been in cold storage for the past three weeks as the Scottish Premiership took a winter break but took a step closer to a domestic treble on Sunday with a 3-0 defeat of Albion Rovers in the Scottish Cup. That result means the Hoops could now equal a club record run of 26 domestic games unbeaten at the start of a season with a draw or a win against St Johnstone on Wednesday. That record was set by the legendary Lisbon Lions side managed by Jock Stein, who became the first British club to lift the European Cup in 1967, and present day manager Brendan Rodgers admitted it was a honour for the current crop to be mentioned alongside them. “To be talked of Continue reading "Celtic on verge of becoming history Bhoys"

Tunisia make it through but Algeria are out of Africa Cup Of Nations

• Algeria failed to qualify after being held to a 2-2 draw by Senegal
• Tunisia beat Zimbabwe 4-2 to claim their quarter-final placeAlgeria were eliminated from the Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon in the final games in Group B on Monday. They drew with Senegal 2-2 and learned Tunisia went through to the quarter-finals in their place by beating Zimbabwe 4-2. Ten goals were scored at the culmination of the group but Algeria’s fate was effectively sealed after their North African rivals, Tunisia, went 2-0 up early against the Zimbabweans with strikes from Niam Sliti and Youssef Msakni. Algeria needed Tunisia to lose in Libreville to have a chance of progressing to the quarters. Continue reading...

Abelardo Fernández saved Sporting Gijón but now his revolution is over | Sid Lowe

With the La Liga club struggling, the local-born manager who took them back to the top has departed saying the team do not reflect him any more The revolution ended in tears. “This is hard,” Abelardo Fernández said, voice breaking, fingers rubbing at his eyes and kneading at his temples while the president gently laid a hand on his neck. “I’m not crying because I’m no longer the coach of Sporting Gijón,” he insisted, “I’m crying because of the affection I have for everyone here.” Wednesday morning at Mareo in the green, rolling hills south of Gijón where cowbells ring, and the man who declared “Sporting are revolutionary, like Asturias” , who rescued and represented the club, who often seemed to be the club, was leaving. A handful of people waited outside, applauding when he appeared. There were hugs, thanks, more tears, and then he climbed into his car. Continue reading "Abelardo Fernández saved Sporting Gijón but now his revolution is over | Sid Lowe"

Algeria out after Senegal draw

Franceville (Gabon) (AFP) – Islam Slimani scored twice but Algeria’s Africa Cup of Nations hopes were ended after a 2-2 draw with Senegal in Franceville on Monday.  The Leicester City striker put Algeria ahead on two occasions but each time Senegal equalised, first through Papa Diop and then courtesy of Moussa Sow as they finished Group B in first place with seven points.  Like the Senegalese, Algeria were one of the pre-tournament favourites but they go out without winning a game, with Tunisia finishing in second place after their 4-2 victory against Zimbabwe in Libreville.  It is Tunisia who progress to a quarter-final against Burkina Faso in the Gabonese capital at the weekend, while Senegal already knew they would be playing Cameroon in Franceville.  “I had warned that Senegal were one of the big favourites and we showed that we could respond in difficult circumstances, which Continue reading "Algeria out after Senegal draw"

Jürgen Klopp reveals ‘long’ clear-the-air meeting with Liverpool players

• Manager held inquest the day after losing against Swansea at Anfield
• German admits his players are not enjoying the job they have to doJürgen Klopp has admitted he is not happy with Liverpool’s past few results in the Premier League and revealed he held a “long” meeting with his players the day after the 3-2 defeat by Swansea City. Klopp also suggested the players were not enjoying themselves at the moment. “We had a very intense period around Christmas and new year,” the Liverpool manager said. “Fair enough, so did everybody else, but before the Swansea game I actually thought we were back on the right track, with the freshness coming back. But what I spoke most about was enjoying what we do. Continue reading...

Arsenal and Bayern Munich in talks to sign teen sensation

Arsenal have joined Bayern Munich in the race to sign teenage sensation, Vincent Thill, according to talkSPORT.  The 16-year-old midfielder is regarded as one of the best prospects in world football and has already made his debut for French Ligue 1 club, FC Metz. Moreover, Thill became the first player born in the 2000s to […]

Orange County Soccer Club announces three signings

Orange County Soccer Club, formerly known as the Orange County
Orange County Soccer Club

Orange County Soccer Club

Blues FC, announced three signings last week. OCSC signed a 24-year-old winger Jerry Van Ewjik, who spent the last three season playing for De Graafschap and Go Ahead Eagles in the Dutch Eredivisie and Eerste Divisie. He scored 24 goals with nine assists. Also returning is veteran midfielder Richard Chaplow. Chaplows joined the Blues in the second half of last year. The club also announced the signing of Dusan Stevanovic
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Algeria out after Senegal draw at Africa Cup of Nations

Franceville (Gabon) (AFP) – Islam Slimani scored twice but Algeria’s Africa Cup of Nations hopes were ended after a 2-2 draw with Senegal in Franceville on Monday.  The Leicester City striker put Algeria ahead on two occasions but each time Senegal equalised, first through Papa Diop and then courtesy of Moussa Sow as they finished Group B in first place with seven points.  Like the Senegalese, Algeria were one of the pre-tournament favourites but they go out without winning a game, with Tunisia finishing in second place after their 4-2 victory against Zimbabwe in Libreville.  It is Tunisia who progress to a quarter-final against Burkina Faso in the Gabonese capital at the weekend, while Senegal already knew they would be playing Cameroon in Franceville.  With top spot already secured, Senegal coach Aliou Cisse changed his entire team with the exception of skipper Kara Mbodj for their Continue reading "Algeria out after Senegal draw at Africa Cup of Nations"

Tunisia fire four past Zimbabwe to progress

Libreville (AFP) – Tunisia became the first team to score four goals at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations as they beat Zimbabwe 4-2 in Libreville Monday to seal a quarter-finals place.  The Carthage Eagles, who led 4-1 at half-time, finished Group B runners-up behind Senegal and play Burkina Faso at the same stadium Saturday. Naim Sliti, Youssef Msakni, Taha Yassine Khenissi and Wahbi Khazri scored for Tunisia and Knowledge Musona and substitute Tendai Ndoro for Zimbabwe. Senegal topped the Group B standings with seven points followed by Tunisia with six, Algeria two and Zimbabwe one. 

The post Tunisia fire four past Zimbabwe to progress appeared first on World Soccer Talk.

Hull City hopeful Ryan Mason will be back for start of next season

• Midfielder underwent emergency surgery on Sunday for fractured skull
• Long road ahead but full recovery appears likely for 25-year-oldThe early indications are that Ryan Mason is set to make a full recovery from his fractured skull and should be back in Hull City’s first team by the start of next season. There is quiet confidence at the KCom Stadium that the injury he sustained in a collision with Chelsea’s Gary Cahill during Sunday’s game at Stamford Bridge is likely to have a significantly lesser impact on his career than a serious knee, ankle or hip problem might. Continue reading...

Hull City hopeful Ryan Mason will be back for start of next season

• Midfielder underwent emergency surgery on Sunday for fractured skull
• Long road ahead but full recovery appears likely for 25-year-oldThe early indications are that Ryan Mason is set to make a full recovery from his fractured skull and should be back in Hull City’s first team by the start of next season. There is quiet confidence at the KCom Stadium that the injury he sustained in a collision with Chelsea’s Gary Cahill during Sunday’s game at Stamford Bridge is likely to have a significantly lesser impact on his career than a serious knee, ankle or hip problem might. Continue reading...

Asmir Begovic move to Bournemouth hinges on Chelsea finding replacement

• League leaders will want new No2 for Thibaut Courtois before agreeing deal
• Antonio Conte sympathetic to keeper’s wish to play first-team footballBournemouth’s hopes of securing the Chelsea goalkeeper Asmir Begovic this month will hinge on the Premier League leaders finding a suitable replacement who is willing to act as back-up to Thibaut Courtois at Stamford Bridge. Begovic, an £8m signing from Stoke City in the summer of 2015, has seen his opportunities limited to three EFL Cup ties and an FA Cup third-round game this season with Courtois having excelled in the Premier League.
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Out of favour Markovic sent on loan to Hull by Liverpool

Kingston upon Hull (United Kingdom) (AFP) – Serbian international winger Lazar Markovic has been sent straight back out on loan to Premier League strugglers Hull on Monday by rivals Liverpool after a spell at Sporting Lisbon was cut short. The 22-year-old — who has joined until the end of the season — returned to Liverpool after all three parties agreed it was best to bring his year long loan to Sporting to a premature end. “The Tigers have signed Liverpool midfielder Lazar Markovic on loan until the end of the season,” read a Hull statement on their website. Markovic, who has been capped 22 times, has played just 34 times for Liverpool since then manager Brendan Rodgers bought him for £20million (23.2m euros, $25m) after impressing in Portuguese side Benfica’s 2014 domestic double and run to that season’s Europa League final. However, he has struggled and was sent out Continue reading "Out of favour Markovic sent on loan to Hull by Liverpool"