£15M For Spanish Defend Star Is Targeted by Liverpool & Arsenal  

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

The Gunner and The Reds are both reportedly vying for the signature of Spanish international Raul Albiol this summer after the defender suggested the Premier League is of interest to him. The 23-year-old should be available as his club side Valencia continue to suffer from financial difficulties and will need to sell some of their prized assets, particularly as they are not as of yet assured Champions League football next term.

Reports suggest that even though the player has a buy-out clause of £50m he will be available for around £15m. The club’s Sporting Director Fernando Gomez as confirmed the club will consider any reasonable offers this week when he told Sky Sports, “The situation has not changed and we are obliged to sell players. We know of the English interest but we have not received a formal offer for Raul.”

“But we are aware that the Reds (Liverpool) have been scouting around here in recent months.”
Both the Gunners and the Reds are in the market for both centre-halves and defensive midfielders and Raul Albiol is able to play in both roles. He is a mainstay of the Valencia side have made 29 League appearances this season (28 starts). The 23-year-old has been a first team regular at the Mestalla for the past 4 seasons, making 126 League appearances and scoring 5 goals. His only club honours were the Spanish Cup in 2008 and he’s expected to depart the club this summer.

The Premier League could be perfect because I have always been a fan of the football they play.”

The Spanish international began his career with the Valencia B side but a season with Getafe in 2004/05 allowed the youngster to show his quality where he made 17 League appearances for the club (15 starts). Albiol is a full Spanish international with 12 caps to his name and was part of the victorious Euro 2008 squad playing in two of the group games including 1 start. The Valencia star was also part of Spain’s winning side in the Uefa U19 championship in 2004 alongside the likes of Juanfan, Sergio Ramos, David Silva and Ruben de la Red.

Liverpool may well lose Daniel Agger in the summer so Albiol may join the Spanish contingent at Anfield although Arsene Wenger may see the player as the ideal man to play alongside his compatriot Cesc Fabregas in the Gunners midfield or firm up the back four. At 6 ft 2, Albiol would certainly boost the strength of the Arsenal side. So do you like the look of Raul Albiol? Would he be the ideal signing due to his versatility? Let’s hear your views.

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Fabregas back in style to score twice  

Monday, 27 April 2009

Captain Cesc Fabregas scored both goals as Arsenal warmed up for their Champions League semi-final against Manchester United with a 2-0 win over relegation-threatened Middlesbrough at the Emirates Stadium.

The Gunners are now all but safe in fourth place following a run of 20 league matches without defeat.

Andrey Arshavin, who smashed in four goals at Liverpool in midweek, was again inspirational, but will not be eligible for the European tie against holders United.

With leading scorer Robin van Persie still sidelined by a groin problem, the double salvo by Fabregas and the return to fitness of goalkeeper Manuel Almunia could not have come at a better time.

With such a vital Champions League tie only some 72 hours away, manager Arsene Wenger would have been forgiven if he had rested a couple of his key men today in front of the watchful eyes of Sir Alex Ferguson in the Emirates crowd.

However, Arsenal had named a strong starting XI and remained positive from the outset, with Theo Walcott - in his 100th appearance for the club - looking to get clear down the right and Arshavin deployed in a roaming role from the left.

The first opening came after eight minutes. Walcott was sent clear by Fabregas, but Robert Huth, the former Chelsea defender, made a fine recovery tackle.

Arsenal continued to press Boro on the edge of the area, with full-back Kieran Gibbs almost getting on the end of Fabregas' pass at the near post.

crucial block

Arshavin snatched possession some 18 yards out, but could not make enough space for a clean shot, and would perhaps have been better to play Fabregas in on the overlap down the left.

To their credit Boro continued to chase down the home side albeit without making too much impression in the opposition half.

The Gunners went ahead on 26 minutes. Nicklas Bendtner flicked the ball to Fabregas in the centre-circle, and the Arsenal captain immediately released Arshavin down the left. The Russian raced into the area before laying the ball back across into the path of the on-rushing Fabregas, who drilled his shot past Brad Jones, low in the far corner.

Arsenal looked for a second, and Walcott screwed a shot across the face of goal when a square pass to Bendtner in the centre looked the better option.

Almunia, fit again following an ankle problem, was called into action on 43 minutes when he saved Stewart Downing's 20-yard snap-shot at full strength, down to the left.

Boro almost snatched an equaliser when former Gunner Jeremie Aliadiere took a through ball on his chest and raced into the area, but Almunia was quick off his line to make a crucial block.

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Arshavin stunner but gunners fail to win  

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Andrey Arshavin scored four for Arsenal but Yossi Benayoun grabbed an injury-time equaliser to earn Liverpool a 4-4 draw in a Premier League thriller at Anfield.

In an incredible match, Russian star Arshavin became the first man to score four goals in a League game at Anfield in 53 years - with Arsenal's only four shots on target.

He gave the Gunners the lead against the run of play after 36 minutes only for Fernando Torres and Benayoun to give Liverpool the advantage with goals within seven minutes early in the second-half.

Arshavin then struck on 67 and 70 minutes only for Torres to add his second two minutes later to level once more.

The Russian looked to have grabbed the points for Arsene Wenger's side by matching Julio Baptista's feat in the League Cup on this ground two seasons ago by scoring his fourth in the final minute.

But Benayoun popped up to scuff home a close range shot in injury-time to take Liverpool to the top of the Premier League for 24 hours at least.

The Merseysiders are ahead of Manchester United, who host Portsmouth on Wednesday, on goal difference but they have played a game more and will feel they have dropped two points regardless of the entertainment served up.

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Top ten summer target  

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

The star ever david villa is the most target in top EPL club


He may look about as deadly as a child’s water pistol these days, but the suspicion remains that Owen can rediscover the goalscoring form that has yielded 40 goals for England. After all, the service he currently receives from the Newcastle midfield is about as good as that you’d get from the unwashed grunter behind the counter at KFC. Wages may be a problem, but he’s available on a Bosman in the summer – Aston Villa may look to revive a partnership with Heskey that has produced in the past.


Now that the sun very rarely comes out during June and July, the best way of detecting summertime is the yearly Everton Love affair (sorry). Moyes’ boys are in desperate need of a striker – Louis Saha has a body imprint on the treatment table, whilst loanee Jo seems too busy trying to outdo Fellaini’s afro. If the powers that be are willing to provide the £12m or so, this might be the summer of Love on Merseyside (....sorry).


The Norweigan has been a mainstay at the heart of a Fulham defence that has been one of the Premiership’s meanest. Given that prolific marksman Bobby Zamora has netted a phenomenal 2 (two) league goals this season, the rear-guard has needed to be solid. With the Cottagers’ debt estimated to total around £150m, Woy Hodgson will face a struggle to hold onto the bullish centre-back. Arsenal, amongst many others, could do a lot worse.


The Wolfsburg striker – let me pause to point out the tragically little-known fact that Wolfsburg used to be managed by a chap named Wolfgang Wolf – anyway, the Wolfsburg striker has scored 17 in 23 league starts for the Bundesliga leaders, and the Bosnian is also the top scorer in European World Cup qualifiers, with 7. He’s a 23 year old target man that the eyes of Europe are on and who most sides will fancy their chances of acquiring.


Just guessing here, but I wouldn’t have thought that the young Valencia growing up in Ecuador would have dreamed of spending much time in Wigan. Reports of interest from Real Madrid are therefore sure to be to the winger’s liking, although he won’t come cheap if the £13m Spurs paid the Latics for Wilson Palacios can be used as a barometer. Dirk Kuyt’s mullet will be quivering as he looks over his shoulder, as Rafa Benitez is also rumoured to be keen on Valencia.


Lyon manager Claude Puel isn’t exactly smearing himself in glory at the moment, especially after his side lost 1-0 to league leaders Bordeaux at the weekend. The result means that Lyon are unlikely to win Ligue 1 this year for the first time since 2001 and are in danger of not qualifying for the Champions League next season. Their star striker is French international Karim Benzema, who is unlikely to want to stick around to possibly play in the bloated mess that will be the Europa League. Chelsea, Barcelona and Man City are likely to be sniffing around.


Every bit as talented with a football as he is ferociously ugly, the French winger seems to have outgrown an under-performing Bayern Munich side. Last year’s German Footballer of the Year is coveted by most of the game’s giants, but prising him from a Bayern outfit that aren’t short of a Euro or six is a task for only those with the deepest pockets. Step forward Manchester City, who should burn all copies of this season’s league table when attracting players. Barcelona are also thought to be interested.


What’s that? Ribery at Barcelona? Surely there’s no place for him? Well, the departure of the Arsenal legend could make room. Last season’s rumours of the Frenchman’s demise were proved to be plain wrong by this term’s 15 league goals in 22 starts, but Barca may be willing to cash in whilst they still can on a player that will by 32 by the start of next season. Could be tempted to follow in the tiny footsteps of Paris Saint Germain’s Claude Makelele by finishing his career in his native land.


Every bit as talented with a football as he is... oh, wait. Whoever it is that actually owns Carlos Tevez is likely to get very rich this summer (when his 18-month loan to Manchester United expires), as £32m is reported to be the lucky number for any club wanting to purchase the Argentinian. Old Trafford is likely to be his preferred destination, but whether Fergie is willing to shell out that amount for a player not guaranteed a first XI place is doubtful.


After showing all the financial restraint of Richie Rich, David Villa’s Valencia have found themselves in over £400m of debt and with a staff that are not being paid. To make the rash assumption that these probably aren’t conditions likely to motivate players, it seems a summer exodus from the Mestalla is inevitable. The brilliant Villa has made it clear his preference is to stay in Spain if he is to leave, but all the big British clubs will be luring him with the promise of... well, actually getting paid.

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Arsenal should bounce back  

Saturday, 18 April 2009

In many ways, Arsenal and Chelsea’s seasons have been very similar. But maybe this season will be different and Arsenal can bounce back after they lost against chelsea in last they mat in cup clash (Carling Cup)

However both sides had stuttering starts to the season and both have recently been boosted by the return of their own respective midfield stars.

Though it would be short-sighted to write Chelsea off completely, it would seem that the title race is now between Liverpool and Manchester United. Therefore both Arsenal and Chelsea are seeking success in the FA Cup and Champions League. And at Wembley this evening, it’s the former that takes centre-stage.

Back on 22 November last year, Arsenal’s season appeared to be in turmoil. After having played just 14 league games, the Gunners had already lost five and that is simply not top-four form. Since then, however, Arsene Wenger’s side have been quietly putting a string of results together. They are unbeaten in 18 league games - the longest run since the ‘invincibles’ of 2003/04.

Chelsea started 08/09 fairly brightly, but suffered three defeats in quick succession in late October and November at the hands of Liverpool, Roma and Arsenal. Earlier this year, away defeats to both Liverpool and Manchester United in the league all but ended Luiz Filippe Scolari’s six-month spell in charge at Stamford Bridge. Guus Hiddink has done fairly well as Scolari’s successor, despite losing at Tottenham just under a month ago.

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Arsenal get through to the semis  

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Arsenal are into the semi-finals of the Champions League after a comprehensive 3-0 victory over Spanish side Villarreal at the Emirates Stadium.

Theo Walcott put the home side ahead in the first half after his chipped shot put the Gunners within sight of the next round.

Arsenal were inches from adding a second goal on the night after Robin Van Persie's powerful free-kick was saved by Lopez.

Villarreal still caused some nervous moments in Arsenal's defence though, with Rossi getting sight of goal at the near post before the hosts scrambled clear. Former Gunner Pires also had a shot blocked from the edge of the area.

But Emmanuel Adebayor put Arsenal two up on the hour mark. The Togo striker has been in lethal form since returning from six weeks out with a hamstring injury - this strike was his fourth in three starts since recovering.

Van Persie’s 69th minute penalty ensured Arsenal’s passage into the semi-finals with a 4-1 aggregate score.

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Adebayor Confirm Staying  

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Report claimed that adebayor will stayed at arsenal for his future after they get their best chances to archive cup in this season, tonight maybe arsenal will get through to the semis if they can beat villareal and next week they will face chelsea in the semis Fa cup.

Adebayor who has finally hit top form after an injury-hit campaign which followed last summer when he nearly quit.

It led to serious doubts about the striker's future but Adebayor - with three goals in two starts since his return from injury - believes Arsenal are finding form at the right time to deliver their first trophy since the 2005 FA Cup.

The African, who scored Arsenal's precious away goal in Villarreal last week, said: "Today, I'm very happy at Arsenal and that is the reason why I stayed because I know with this team I can achieve things. I know we've had a difficult season in the Premier League, but we're still in the Champions League and the FA Cup - and that's fantastic.

"We have to take the good points from that and enjoy ourselves to the end of the season. This season has been difficult with all the problems, Alex Hleb going to Barcelona, Mathieu Flamini going to Milan and everything was struggling a little bit.

"Then there was are we going to buy or not, all these things, myself going or staying.

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Arsenal beat wigan in style  

Monday, 13 April 2009

Last night arsenal get their street win in epl clash with Mikael Silvestre grabbed the important goal in his first game for three months as Arsenal came from behind to record a crucial 4-1 win at Wigan on Saturday.

When the Frenchman came off the bench in the 35th minute for the injured Johan Djourou, the visitors were struggling.

They trailed to Mido’s early goal and had barely found their rhythm at all. Matters nearly got much worse on the stroke of half time but Kieran Gibbs escaped with a yellow card after hauling down Antonio Valencia when the midfielder seemed clear.

However Theo Walcott fired Arsenal level just past the hour and then Silvestre popped up to secure the points in the 71st minute.

Andrey Arshavin and Alex Song added goals in the final minutes to give the scoreline a gloss the visitors perhaps did not deserve.

Wigan had played well for an hour of this game but, one thing is for sure, when they gave Arsenal the merest glimmer of a way back into the game they were made to pay.

With an ongoing run of 18 Premier League games behind them and fourth place looking nearly assured, Wenger’s ruthless side now have silverware on the their mind.

Wenger’s rotation was understandable given their massive games this week. In all there were five changes. Three were enforced after Manuel Almunia (ankle), William Gallas (knee) and Gael Clichy (back) had collected injuries at Villarreal on Wednesday.

But the demotion to the bench of Samir Nasri and, especially after the quality of his midweek goal, Emmanuel Adebayor were surely down to the rigours of the fixtures to come.

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gunners link with Le Mans star  

Thursday, 9 April 2009

Arsenal are reportedly the latest club to be linked with a move for Le Mans midfielder star.

Mathieu Coutadeur is only 22-year-old has caught the eye in his homeland and emerged as an influential performer for his club.

Arsene Wenger obviously keeps a very close eye on Ligue 1 and it is little surprise that he is said to be monitoring developments, even though other clubs have previously been keeping tabs on a player who has scored four times this season.

"I will have one year left on my contract at the end of the season," he said recently. "Since I am tied to the club until 2010.

"For me, the ball is in the club's court. I am ambitious. I want to progress.

"We will consider all this at the end of the season."

Gunners scouts have been watching Le Mans games this term with Gervinho, the Ivory Coast striker, long rumoured to be a possible target.

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Credit for the gunner  

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

The champion league between both two games in english sides earned draw. But credit for the gunner to get one away goal with spectacular goal from adebayor kick against Villareal 1-1 in their Champions League quarter final first-leg.

Two superb goals lit up El Madrigal with Marcos Senna unleashing a long range belter in the first half only for Emmanuel Adebayor to equalise with a delightful overhead kick midway through the second half.

On the debit side for Arsenal, Manuel Almunia and William Gallas were both injured and replaced.

The Yellow Submarine ran smoothly across the pitch within the opening five minutes to provide Joseba Llorente with a shooting opportunity from inside the penalty area but Kolo Torre made a saving challenge to set the tone for the first 45 minutes.

Further concern followed for Arsenal when Almunia firstly clattered into Giuseppe Rossi as the shot-stopper went to clear the ball outside his penalty box, which left the Spaniard seeking treatment in the ankle region.

The goalkeeper was fit to continue but then found himself rooted to the spot from a corner when Joan Capdevila bundled the ball towards goal only for Gael Clichy, stationed on the line, to clear.

Arsenal were unable to relieve the persistent waves of pressure and the home side took the lead in the 10th- minute through the dependable captain, Senna, unleashing a 25-yard screamer which swerved in mid-air to elude the out-stretched arms of Almunia.

It would have been a travesty if the men in yellow provided all the silky football, bearing in mind they were playing Arsenal, and the North London side demonstrated their own pedigree when Cesc Fabregas cleverly slipped the ball to Samir Nasri whose shot from the right side of the penalty box prompted Diego Lopez into a smart save.

The fitness of Almunia was a cause for concern from the moment he collided with Rossi near the corner flag, and the unhappy Spaniard was subsequently replaced by Lukasz Fabianski in the 28th-minute.

The number two shot-stopper made an immediate impact with a double save as Senna’s long range strike was parried into the path of Capdevila, whose near-post effort was then blocked by Fabianski.

Another injury headache followed for Arsene Wenger when Rossi’s mazy run towards the penalty box was curtailed illegally by Alexandre Song, who received a yellow card for his pains, but his tackle on Rossi had further ramifications for The Gunners.

Gallas’ leg had taken the full impact of the felled Rossi which resulted in the Frenchman being withdrawn for Johan Djourou later in the first half.

Fabregas received a yellow card for the visitors when he quickly took a free-kick and found the back of the Villarreal net but the Spaniard’s actions had not been sanctioned by the referee.

Arsenal enjoyed plenty of possession after the interval but their smooth approach work was undone by a telling final ball and this failing manifested itself more than once.

Walcott provided a better delivery for Adebayor who hung well in the air to send a header wide of the far post, as Arsenal sought a crucial away goal which can cure most ills in European competition.

Adebayor produced the second spectacular finish of this contest to land that away goal with a chest trap in the penalty box before sending an overhead kick into the far corner of the goal to spectacularly level matters in the 66th-minute.

Arsenal needed to ensure they kept things watertight in defence but they were given scares with substitute Guillermo Franco sliding his shot wide at the near post and Senna teed up another striker from range which sailed just over the visitors’ crossbar.

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Adebayor score twice to beat man city at home  

Sunday, 5 April 2009

Emmanuel Adebayor struck twice as Arsenal beat Manchester City 2-0 at Emirates Stadium.

The Togo striker - who had been out since February, but scored for his country while on World Cup qualifying duty - nodded in a free-kick from fit-again captain Cesc Fabregas after seven minutes.

Adebayor added another at the start of the second half as City - who were forced into a couple of changes by injury - never really got going.

Arsenal welcomed back captain Cesc Fabregas after three months out with a knee injury for the Barclays Premier League visit of Manchester City.

Theo Walcott and Emmanuel Adebayor were also in action again following fitness problems of their own.

Leading scorer Robin van Persie was out after picking up a groin injury on international duty, so Russian Andrey Arshavin looked set to be pressed into a more attacking role.

Manchester City striker Craig Bellamy recovered from a knee problem to start, while defender Wayne Bridge returned after a hamstring injury.

The Gunners went into the match on an unbeaten league run of 16 matches which had taken them back into the top four.

City, meanwhile, had secured just one away this season, but were the last team to beat Arsene Wenger's men back in late November.

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April games will define arsenal season  

Saturday, 4 April 2009

Arsène Wenger knows that the next 22 days will define Arsenal’s season.

The Frenchman and his players will negotiate seven games in that period and, if all goes well, they will be in the Semi-Finals of the Champions League, in the FA Cup Final and well-placed in the top four of the Premier League.

Conversely, Arsenal’s hopes of silverware could have evaporated by the time April ends. Wenger is well aware that it’s time for his players to deliver and reap the reward for their hard work this season.

“Of course [April is important], not just for us but any given team,” said the Frenchman. “March, April and May defines your season of course.

“We have put ourselves in a very strong position because of the hard work we have done now but now it’s the final part of the season where every single game becomes massively important.”

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Fabregas is ready to action against man city  

Thursday, 2 April 2009

Today news reportedly that fabregas is ready to play against Man City in this weekend and has be confirmed by Arsene Wenger.

But the Arsenal manager has stated that the Spanish box-to-box midfielder will need three games to be back to his best.

Fabregas picked up a ligament injury during the Premier League game with Liverpool following a clash with Xabi Alonso.

The Gunners are still involved in three competitions and their French boss has labelled their next eight games ‘decisive’ ones.

When asked about Fabregas’ fitness, Wenger said on TF1: “He is ready to play again.

“But he needs three games to be back [at his best].

“We are due to play eight games in 25 days, which are all decisive,” he added.

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Big Four aims for trezeguet  

Todays news repotedly that Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United, and Liverpool are all believed to be interested in signing French forward David Trezeguet.

The player’s agent has confirmed that the Juventus striker is eager to leave the club and that he is being tracked by Chelsea and a number of other Premier League teams.

Speaking to Italian publication Tuttosport, Antonio Caliendo said: “A divorce could suit both parties. Chelsea and three other important English sides have targeted David and I can’t deny that he would gladly move to England. He likes the Premier League and could excel there.”

Despite trailing Inter Milan by seven points the Juventus manager Claudio Ranieri continues to substitute the 31 year old and the Frenchman is known to be looking for potential suitors.

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