September 29th, 2014 by Liam
New Netherlands coach Guus Hiddink was an angry man after the club lost its second match under his regime. A lot of positivity was expected from Hiddink’s second spell in charge of national team. This was also a high-pressure job for the former Chelsea boss considering that he had to follow in the footsteps of Louis van Gaal, who was highly successful prior to him. The new Manchester United manager led the Dutch national team to a third-place finish at the World Cup 2014. Hiddink’s reign this time round has started in an extraordinarily poor fashion.
The team suffered a 2-0 defeat against Italy in a friendly match. This was Hiddink’s first match in charge of the team and it did not strike fear into the supporters since it was only a friendly encounter. However, a 2-1 defeat against Czech Republic in the opening Euro 2016 qualifying match has raised concerns about the team even at this early stage. Even though it was an away match, Netherlands were expected to comfortably overcome Czech Republic, who even failed to qualify for the World Cup 2014. Questions were raised to the manager after the defeat, but Hiddink refused to blame the 3-5-2 system that he has carried over from the previous regime.
Instead, he said that poor defending was responsible for this defeat. “In the final seconds of a match you should never ever lose. We were able to just walk out of here with a 1-1 draw. We gave it away so stupidly. When I talk about it now I get extremely angry again. After the first goal we reorganised our formation to 4-3-3 but at the end it was a really unlucky defeat for us. It is very difficult to consider your tactical formation if your defenders make such mistakes,” said Hiddink.
August 28th, 2014 by admin
August 18th, 2014 by Liam
Luis Enrique has reinforced many areas of the team of Barcelona with Luis Suarez, Jeremy Mathieu, Claudio Bravo, Thomas Vermaelen being some of the more recognized and well known players that will be joining the Spanish team for the next season and all of the challenges that are waiting for them.
Barcelona had to spend around € 144 million in order to bring Vermaelen, Bravo, Suarez and Mathieu to Camp Nou which is a significantly higher amount of money compared to their eternal rivals Real Madrid but at least Luis Enrique has fortified many aspects of the squad in comparison to Madrid as they only upgraded their attacking options.
The majority of Barcelona supporters are happy and content with the signings that the club has made as it will surely increase the chances that the club has on not only fighting for the Spanish League but more importantly, the Champions League but the former player Barcelona Johan Cruyff is not so sure about all of the new arrivals and changes that the club is going through.
“Kroos was one of the best players at Bayern and at the World Cup. He sprays the ball around really well. James is also a terrific playmaker. Barca always used to sign lots of playmaker, but now Real have done so. Barca have gone in a new direction and we have to give them the benefit of the doubt’’
“They’ve spent a lot of money, which always brings a lot of scrutiny, and we’ll have to see how it goes. I’ve been impressed by new Barcelona coach Luis Enrique’s enthusiasm to get down to work and give his all in his new role, though. I don’t know if the team won’t end up unbalanced. You’d have to be on the inside to know exactly what the situation is. Hopefully Luis Enrique will be able to bring him into line so he does what he’s there to do’’
That was the statement of Cruyff said as he praised Real Madrid’s signings but remains uncertain about Barcelona’s newest arrivals and whether or not they can all work and play together in the pitch at the same time.
Some years ago Barcelona was starting to promote and showcase their youth players and they still are indeed promoting and focusing on having a new generation of players in their squad but this has recently been taking a turn and this can be evidenced by the amount of players being signed as well as the large sum of money that has been spent.
July 8th, 2014 by admin
Barcelona does not want to fall behind in this summer transfer window as they have completed their 3rd signing with the Chilean goalkeeper Claudio Bravo being the latest addition to the team of Luis Enrique.
“I would like to thank FC Barcelona for putting their trust in me and my future abilities. I am proud to be here and be a part of this great project and this great club. I feel that it was time to put an end to an era at Real Sociedad, a club where I enjoyed a lot more success than I had hoped. Now I have to defend these colors to the best of my abilities. A thousand things are going through my head right now; you always hope that these types of things will happen to you and that you get this far.” Bravo said during a press conference as he expressed his satisfaction in joining a club with the caliber like Barcelona.
Ter Stegen and Rakitic are the other players that Barcelona has secured but there still is a player which is rumored to be joining Camp Nou as rumors involving Luis Suarez simply do not stop from flying around as each day passes.
The Uruguayan attacker Luis Suarez continues showing his world-class abilities as he not only pushed Liverpool to the top of the Premier League but has displayed impressive performances for his country, Uruguay in the 2014 World Cup.
Everything has not been great for the Liverpool player as he was recently sanctioned after another biting incident. Suarez bitted Giorgio Chiellini when Uruguay was battling against Italy and came out with the victory and his actions ultimately led to Luis Suarez being suspended for 9 matches and for 4 months from any football-related activity.
Even with all the history that Luis Suarez has and his aggressive and questionable decisions in and outside of the pitch, this has not stopped Barcelona on launching offers for the Uruguayan and it is even believed that the Spanish club is about to hire a sports psychologist that will help control Suarez when he joins Camp Nou.
June 23rd, 2014 by admin
Dutch legend Johan Cruyff has tipped Lionel Messi and Argentina to go all the way and secure their long awaited third World Cup crown this summer in Brazil.
And the former Barcelona manager has also backed the likes of Germany, Italy and Spain to go far in the competition as well.
Brazil remain strong favorites to secure their sixth World Cup on home soil, but Cruyff believes it will be the Messi led Argentina that will be the team to beat at the biggest event of the beautiful game. The 67 year old believes Brazil has too much pressure riding on them as they look to vanquish the ghosts of 1950 and secure the coveted title.
And the Dutchman thinks this pressure could force Brazil to succumb and that is where Argentina could capitalize on their great rivals’ fall and secure the title for their own.
Speaking on his column in a Dutch newspaper, Johan Cruyff added that the pressure on the squad is huge; there is too much riding on them. But they will have to look out for Argentina, which has arguably the most talented team in the World Cup by a margin.
He went on to mention that Spain will pose a strong challenge, as well as Italy and Germany who have a habit of growing into the tournament.
Johan Cruyff also rued the several injury absentees from the World Cup with top class players like Marco Reus, Radamel Falcao, Frank Ribery and several others missing due to injuries.
Several others including Cristiano Ronaldo, Steven Gerrard, Neymar and Arturo Vidal are all struggling with injuries and Cruyff hopes these players get fit in time. He mentioned that this is a month long event and he is not happy that injured players have already been dropped from the squads.
May 19th, 2014 by admin
According to several reports, Barcelona are set to offer super star Lionel Messi another new contract. This news comes as a major surprise considering that he signed a new deal only 12 months ago. Messi, who is about to turn 27 in June, has already signed seven contract renewals in the last 11 seasons. The new deal is expected to make him the player with the highest salary of around £ 15.5 million per year. The deal, though, is expected to significantly reward Barcelona because they will be now receiving a large portion of his image rights.
This will mean that Messi will be suffering a drop in overall income when compared with the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, as Barcelona will not be pocketing his image rights. The new contract, though, has come under criticism from Barcelona legend Johan Cruyff, who thinks that the contract extension is unwarranted. Cruyff has been highly critical of the club in recent months. Gerardo Martino especially has come under fire from the legend, who famously formed the philosophy of the club. After having witnessed it come under distraction from the new manager, he says that the club should rethink their philosophy once again.
Cruyff was an advisor Barcelona for a few years before leaving his post.
“I never speak of who does or doesn’t deserve it, but I think that Barcelona have played quite well this season and they still have the chance to win the league, and therefore they also deserve it. The renewal of Messi’s contract is just a quick fix because all eyes were on him after the Neymar situation. But what about other players like Xavi who have also given everything to Barça? It’s not Neymar’s fault: he’s the victim; I don’t want to discredit him. His agent didn’t do things properly,” said the Dutchman.