Juventus complete permanent Lemina capture

29 April 2016 20:23

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Juventus have taken up the option to permanently sign of Mario Lemina from Marseille in a transfer initially worth €9.5 million.

Lemina joined Juve on loan early las August, but has since made just 11 appearances in all competitions, with his time at the club blighted by injury.

However, the recently crowned Serie A champions have exercised their right to sign the 22-year-old on a permanent deal.

Lemina has signed a contract until June 2020 for a fee that could rise to €10.5m if performance-related targets are met.

Article source: http://www.soccerway.com/news/2016/April/29/juventus-complete-permanent-lemina-capture

Chelsea skipper Terry to return for Tottenham clash

29 April 2016 15:29

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John Terry will make his Chelsea return in Monday’s Premier League clash with Tottenham at Stamford Bridge.

The former England captain has not played since the 2-2 draw with West Ham in March due to Achilles and hamstring injuries.

But he is due to play a part in Monday’s London derby and could line-up alongside fellow returnee Gary Cahill.

Chelsea interim manager Guus Hiddink told a news conference on Friday: “They have both participated in this week’s training. They are okay to come into the first 18.

“It’s good to have them back, because John was out for a longer period because of injury. Gary a little bit the same.”

Chelsea have endured a disappointing season but possess a proud record against Spurs, having not lost to their London rivals at Stamford Bridge since 1990.

Hiddink added: “Chelsea have always been strong in the past at Stamford Bridge and I hope we can continue it.

“We want to continue that [even though] I am not a man of statistics.”

Spurs’ title challenge could be over by Monday with Leicester City able to clinch the trophy with a win at Manchester United the day before.

Although they are likely to fall short, Hiddink remains a fan of Tottenham’s approach this season under Mauricio Pochettino.

“They have a large squad and have had a good season. I respect the work Pochettino is doing, and it shows in the team,” he said.

“I see them play in the way you would like a team to play – which is attractive. He [Pochettino] is doing a very good job there.

“The squad is strong. Even when [the suspended] Dele Alli is not playing his replacement will try to do a strong job as well.

“They are defensively well organised, and have a strong urge to attack with their full-back, midfield, attack.”

Article source: http://www.soccerway.com/news/2016/April/29/chelsea-skipper-terry-to-return-for-tottenham-clash

Le Saux hails ruthless Ranieri

29 April 2016 09:02

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Claudio Ranieri’s jovial character may have endeared him to many in the Premier League this season but Graeme Le Saux says the Leicester City manager also has a serious side.

The Italian has masterminded a sensational turnaround at the King Power Stadium, and the Foxes stand on the brink of history with three games remaining.

Victory against Manchester United on Sunday would seal a momentous league title for Leicester – the first in their history – a stark contrast to last season when they were battling for survival under Nigel Pearson.

Ranieri’s arrival was met with scepticism by some but he has proved everybody wrong, while keeping people entertained in his news conferences with his eccentric outbursts.

But Le Saux – who played under Ranieri at Chelsea – says the 64-year-old is very different away from the public eye.

“That’s all veneer, don’t be fooled, that’s part design,” said Le Saux. 

“He’s a very shrewd operator and he wouldn’t shirk a big decision. Behind the smile there’s a ruthless football manager, a guy who is happy to make big decisions.

“At Leicester he hasn’t had to, the team picks itself. He’s not had to deal with dropping big names and moving people on.

“Once he’s established his team and his shape, he’s been the polar opposite to what we were calling him, the Tinkerman.”

Article source: http://www.soccerway.com/news/2016/April/29/le-saux-hails-ruthless-ranieri

Bayern Munich v Borussia Monchengladbach: Wounded Bayern on the brink of Bundesliga glory

28 April 2016 21:35

Bayern Munich will look to bounce back from midweek disappointment in Europe by securing the Bundesliga title with victory over Borussia Monchengladbach.

Pep Guardiola’s side suffered a 1-0 defeat at Atletico Madrid in the first leg of their Champions league semi-final tie in Spain on Wednesday.

But victory back on home turf against Gladbach on Saturday would guarantee a fourth consecutive domestic crown, with Bayern seven points ahead of Borussia Dortmund with three games remaining.

Their rivals host Wolfsburg and realistically need a win to have any chance of capitalising on a Bayern slip-up.

“We need one more win,” Guardiola told ZDF. “I am convinced that Dortmund will win all their outstanding matches.”

All eyes will be on the outgoing coach’s team selection, with an expectation that a number of regular starters will be rested ahead of Tuesday’s return with Atletico.

The use of Thomas Muller will be under particular scrutiny after Guardiola made the surprise and subsequently much-criticised call to drop the Germany star to the bench at the Vicente Calderon, where he came on during the last 20 minutes to aid a fruitless push for an equaliser.

The decision to deploy wingers Douglas Costa and Kingsley Coman in an attempt to stretch Atletico’s narrow defensive shape backfired as Bayern endured a torrid first half.

The German champions could welcome a defensive reinforcement against Gladbach, with Jerome Boateng back to fitness following a groin injury that has sidelined him since the 2-1 win over Hamburg in January.

Boateng travelled to Madrid without making the matchday squad and Guardiola is unlikely to throw the 27-year-old back into his starting XI this weekend.

“I don’t know [if Boateng will start in the return against Atletico]. He was injured for three, four months,” he said.

“I hope that he can play a few minutes against Gladbach. But he’s been injured for a long time and only trained with the squad four or five times.”

If Bayern have their eye on engagements elsewhere, Gladbach will be primed to capitalise.

Andre Schubert’s team were the first side to beat Bayern in the Bundesliga this season, as quickfire second-half goals from Oscar Wendt, Lars Stindl and Fabian Johnson earned a scintillating 3-1 win at Borussia Park in December.

Despite losing their first five games of the league season under Schubert’s predecessor Lucien Favre, Borussia are only a point behind Hertha Berlin in their quest for a top-four place and a return to the Champions League.

Schubert’s men failed to build on a 5-0 demolition of Hertha at the start of this month as they lost back-to-back match against Ingolstadt and Hannover, continuing woeful away form.

But an early Jeremy Toljan own goal got them back on track against Hoffenheim last time out before Mahmoud Dahoud and Andre Hann netted to close out a 3-1 victory.

 

Key Opta Stats:
– Bayern are on a run of three winless games against Borussia (D1, L2). Their 3-1 defeat in the reverse fixture was their only loss in the first half of the season.
– Bayern will become the first side to lift four consecutive Bundesliga titles if Borussia Dortmund fail to better their result this weekend. It would also see them claim the championship at the Allianz Arena for the first time.
– The Bavarians have won all 10 of their Bundesliga games immediately following a Champions League fixture in 2015-16, scoring 29 goals and conceding just two in the process.
– Only two sides have collected fewer points on the road in the league this season than Borussia Monchengladbach (Eintracht Frankfurt and Wolfsburg). Frankfurt are the only club other than Borussia to lose 10 away games this term. The Foals have claimed just one 

– Gladbach have one point on their travels in 2016 and their last away win was a 4-1 triumph ove Hertha Berlin last October.

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Article source: http://www.soccerway.com/news/2016/April/28/bayern-munich-v-borussia-monchengladbach-wounded-bayern-on-the-brink-of-bundesliga-glory

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