Archive for Chelsea

Ba completes Blues switch

Posted in Football with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 4, 2013 by jackpinnock

Chelsea have matched the release clause in Demba Ba’s contract at Newcastle, for him to become Blues boss Rafael Benitez first signing in the January Transfer window.

The fee is believed to be in the region of £7million, and with Ba keen to speak to other clubs if the clause is met, the Senegalese decided to put pen to paper on a three and a half year deal at Stamford Bridge.

Ba’s career catipulted when at German outfit Hoffenheim, scoring 37 goals in 97 appearances, before a move to London rivals West Ham gave him recognition in the English top flight.

The powerful striker scored an impressive 7 goals in 12 games for the Hammers, but it could not prevent them from being relegated to the Championship, and during the summer of 2011, he moved to Newcastle on a free transfer.

Ba had a very impressive stint on Tyneside, scoring 29 goals in 54 appearances for the St.James Park outfit, and forming a deadly partnership with fellow Senegalese striker Papiss Demba Cisse.

When it was aware Ba was becoming unsettled in the North East, and there was an affordable release clause in his contract, many top flight clubs were monitoring his situation, including Manchester United, Manchester City and Arsenal.

However, it was Chelsea that captured the talented centre forward, and with Senegal not participating in the African Cup of Nations, and Fernando Torres looking much more like his old self, this could well be the striking partnership of the season.

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Posted in Football, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 4, 2012 by jackpinnock

England was in Sweden’s capital city of Stocklolm during the week preparing for their friendly match at the Friends Arena.

The likes of Liverpool winger, Raheem Sterling, Everton stalwart, Leon Osman, Arsenal youngster, Carl Jenkinson and Tottenham Hotspur defender, Steven Caulker have been selected, as well as Crystal Palace wonderkid Wilfried Zaha, who is the first player to picked for the full England squad at Championship level since Jay Bothroyd was picked in 2010.

Zaha’s selection has already sparked controversy, as former Chelsea hitman, Didier Drogba has openly said that Zaha should not play for England and play for the Ivory Coast.

However, Zaha recently said that there weren’t many players better than him. Zaha had quickly denied this and took to Twitter to say “Just to clear things up, when I say I don’t see anyone better than me i just say that to boost my confidence when I get on the field”. “I know there’s players out there better than me so please don’t take my words the wrong way”.

Former Crystal Palace player and fan, Mark Bright, who is now a BBC pundit, also took to twitter and said that “he is the most talked about and most talented player outside the PL in English football !!! “.

England’s last meeting against the Swedes came in the group stage at Euro 2012 in Ukraine when the Three Lions took the lead through a superb Andy Carroll header.

In a blink of a eye, Roy Hodgson’s men were 2-1 down when former Aston Villa legend, Olof Mellberg, scored a surprising brace.

However, a looping effort from Theo Walcott, and a sublime backheel finish from Danny Welbeck enabled England to beat Sweden for the very first time in a competitive match.

Four months on, and Hodgson has selected some younger and uncapped players to fully prepare themselves for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

Struggling in Europe?

Posted in Football, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 24, 2012 by jackpinnock

The Premier League is one of, if not the most, prestigious and powerful league in the world. Most of Europe’s best players say that in some point in their career, they would love to play on English soil. The high intensity of matches, the controversy, and the star studded quality of teams and players is what most players in the world can only dream about. However, from my perspective, this is only seen on British teritory. When it comes to European football such as the Europa League and especially the Champions League, the so called quality of the English teams, seems to be deminished.

The likes of Chelsea, Manchester United, Arsenal and Manchester City have all shown how they perform in the Premier League, and what the standard should be, however, when it comes to competing with the European elite, English teams tend to struggle. Recently, Chelsea travelled to the Ukranian city of Donestk, Shakhtar dominiated possesion and ultimately won the game. Manchester United played Portugese outfit Braga and narrowly won 3-2.

With the European contingent vastly progressing in the quality of players, players development, and increasing the intensity of games, is the Barclays Premier League becoming easier to play in, or is playing in Europe disturbing the domestic season ?