Sports

Watford 3-0 Liverpool

 Posted by at 10:42 PM
Dec 202015
 
77:50 Booking

Booking Miguel Britos (Watford) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

77:43

Christian Benteke (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

77:43

Foul by Miguel Britos (Watford).

76:57

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Nyom.

76:23

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Miguel Britos.

76:21

Attempt blocked. Jordan Henderson (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

75:29

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

75:20 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Watford. Ikechi Anya replaces Jurado.

74:56

Delay in match Emre Can (Liverpool) because of an injury.

73:49

Attempt blocked. Jordon Ibe (Liverpool) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked.

73:37 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Liverpool. Christian Benteke replaces Roberto Firmino.

73:23 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Liverpool. Jordon Ibe replaces Adam Lallana.

71:37

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Heurelho Gomes.

71:35

Attempt saved. Emre Can (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

69:55

Foul by Lucas Leiva (Liverpool).

69:55

Odion Ighalo (Watford) wins a free kick on the left wing.

65:41

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Heurelho Gomes.

65:38

Attempt saved. Jordan Henderson (Liverpool) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Philippe Coutinho.

62:46

Corner, Watford. Conceded by Adam Bogdan.

62:44

Attempt saved. Odion Ighalo (Watford) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Jurado with a through ball.

60:18

Attempt missed. Adam Lallana (Liverpool) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Jordan Henderson.

59:41

Divock Origi (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

59:41

Foul by Nyom (Watford).

58:31

Corner, Watford. Conceded by Adam Lallana.

56:46

Offside, Liverpool. Divock Origi tries a through ball, but Jordan Henderson is caught offside.

55:34

Corner, Watford. Conceded by Jordan Henderson.

53:07

Offside, Liverpool. Adam Bogdan tries a through ball, but Roberto Firmino is caught offside.

50:23

Offside, Liverpool. Philippe Coutinho tries a through ball, but Roberto Firmino is caught offside.

49:19

Foul by Adam Lallana (Liverpool).

49:19

Nyom (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

48:33

Offside, Liverpool. Lucas Leiva tries a through ball, but Divock Origi is caught offside.

47:15

Attempt saved. Divock Origi (Liverpool) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Emre Can.

46:28

Attempt missed. Alberto Moreno (Liverpool) left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is close, but misses to the left.

45:47

Attempt blocked. Adam Lallana (Liverpool) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Divock Origi with a headed pass.

45:30

Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

45:30

Foul by Etienne Capoue (Watford).

45:00

Second Half begins Watford 2, Liverpool 0.

45:00 +3:07 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Watford 2, Liverpool 0.

45:00 +2:45

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Craig Cathcart.

44:21

Corner, Watford. Conceded by Alberto Moreno.

43:27

Offside, Liverpool. Philippe Coutinho tries a through ball, but Jordan Henderson is caught offside.

42:41

Offside, Watford. Craig Cathcart tries a through ball, but Troy Deeney is caught offside.

41:59

Offside, Liverpool. Roberto Firmino tries a through ball, but Philippe Coutinho is caught offside.

40:50

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

40:45 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Liverpool. Divock Origi replaces Martin Skrtel because of an injury.

39:14

Delay in match Martin Skrtel (Liverpool) because of an injury.

38:47

Corner, Watford. Conceded by Martin Skrtel.

38:13

Offside, Liverpool. Martin Skrtel tries a through ball, but Philippe Coutinho is caught offside.

36:43

Foul by Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool).

36:43

Ben Watson (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

32:59

Corner, Watford. Conceded by Adam Bogdan.

32:57

Attempt saved. Jurado (Watford) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Almen Abdi with a cross.

32:19

Attempt blocked. Etienne Capoue (Watford) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Almen Abdi.

31:02

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

28:58

Delay in match Martin Skrtel (Liverpool) because of an injury.

27:40

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Nyom.

21:54

Foul by Alberto Moreno (Liverpool).

21:54

Nyom (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

20:23

Foul by Emre Can (Liverpool).

20:23

Etienne Capoue (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

19:30

Foul by Martin Skrtel (Liverpool).

19:30

Troy Deeney (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

18:25

Emre Can (Liverpool) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

18:25

Foul by Almen Abdi (Watford).

14:51 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Watford 2, Liverpool 0. Odion Ighalo (Watford) right footed shot from the right side of the box to the bottom left corner.

13:26

Foul by Emre Can (Liverpool).

13:26

Etienne Capoue (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

12:28

Offside, Liverpool. Jordan Henderson tries a through ball, but Roberto Firmino is caught offside.

10:20

Attempt saved. Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Jordan Henderson.

9:20

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Etienne Capoue.

8:56

Corner, Liverpool. Conceded by Craig Cathcart.

8:03

Attempt blocked. Nathaniel Clyne (Liverpool) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

2:05 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Watford 1, Liverpool 0. Nathan Aké (Watford) left footed shot from very close range to the bottom left corner following a corner.

1:33

Corner, Watford. Conceded by Nathaniel Clyne.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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River Plate 0-3 Barcelona

 Posted by at 9:00 PM
Dec 202015
 
80:37 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Barcelona. Thomas Vermaelen replaces Javier Mascherano.

77:01

Attempt blocked. Neymar (Barcelona) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Luis Suárez.

76:30

Corner, River Plate. Conceded by Claudio Bravo.

76:28

Attempt saved. Lucas Alario (River Plate) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top right corner. Assisted by Leonel Vangioni with a cross.

75:22

Foul by Sergio Busquets (Barcelona).

75:22

Gabriel Mercado (River Plate) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

74:05

Corner, River Plate. Conceded by Gerard Piqué.

72:01

Luis Suárez (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

72:01

Foul by Jonathan Maidana (River Plate).

71:10 Booking

Booking Sergi Roberto (Barcelona) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

71:00

Foul by Sergi Roberto (Barcelona).

71:00

Gonzalo Martínez (River Plate) wins a free kick on the left wing.

67:47 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! River Plate 0, Barcelona 3. Luis Suárez (Barcelona) header from the centre of the box to the top left corner. Assisted by Neymar with a cross.

66:06 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Barcelona. Sergi Roberto replaces Ivan Rakitic.

62:12

Neymar (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

62:12

Foul by Gabriel Mercado (River Plate).

61:11

Corner, River Plate. Conceded by Dani Alves.

60:34 Booking

Booking Neymar (Barcelona) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

60:29

Foul by Neymar (Barcelona).

60:29

Gabriel Mercado (River Plate) wins a free kick on the right wing.

59:02

Foul by Dani Alves (Barcelona).

59:02

Leonel Vangioni (River Plate) wins a free kick on the left wing.

58:35

Foul by Luis Suárez (Barcelona).

58:35

Jonathan Maidana (River Plate) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

57:01

Attempt missed. Neymar (Barcelona) left footed shot from outside the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Dani Alves.

56:51

Attempt saved. Luis Suárez (Barcelona) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Neymar.

56:12

Attempt missed. Lionel Messi (Barcelona) left footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Neymar.

55:05 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, River Plate. Sebastián Driussi replaces Tabaré Viudez.

54:48

Corner, Barcelona. Conceded by Eder Balanta.

54:02

Attempt blocked. Lionel Messi (Barcelona) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Neymar.

52:10

Attempt saved. Lionel Messi (Barcelona) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Neymar.

48:47 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! River Plate 0, Barcelona 2. Luis Suárez (Barcelona) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Sergio Busquets with a through ball following a fast break.

46:00

Offside, Barcelona. Dani Alves tries a through ball, but Luis Suárez is caught offside.

45:00

Second Half begins River Plate 0, Barcelona 1.

45:00 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, River Plate. Gonzalo Martínez replaces Rodrigo Mora.

45:00 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, River Plate. Lucho González replaces Leonardo Ponzio.

45:00 +1:00 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, River Plate 0, Barcelona 1.

45:00 +0:36

Attempt missed. Luis Suárez (Barcelona) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Lionel Messi with a through ball.

44:49

Dani Alves (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

44:49

Foul by Rodrigo Mora (River Plate).

44:10

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

43:35

Delay in match Dani Alves (Barcelona) because of an injury.

42:25 Booking

Booking Ivan Rakitic (Barcelona) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

42:23

Foul by Ivan Rakitic (Barcelona).

42:23

Tabaré Viudez (River Plate) wins a free kick on the left wing.

41:32

Foul by Jordi Alba (Barcelona).

41:32

Lucas Alario (River Plate) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

40:33

Javier Mascherano (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

40:33

Foul by Lucas Alario (River Plate).

39:22

Offside, Barcelona. Luis Suárez tries a through ball, but Jordi Alba is caught offside.

38:25

Attempt blocked. Neymar (Barcelona) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Lionel Messi.

35:03 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! River Plate 0, Barcelona 1. Lionel Messi (Barcelona) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Neymar with a headed pass.

33:00

Corner, Barcelona. Conceded by Marcelo Barovero.

32:55

Attempt saved. Lionel Messi (Barcelona) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

31:58 Booking

Booking Leonardo Ponzio (River Plate) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

31:54

Dani Alves (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

31:54

Foul by Leonardo Ponzio (River Plate).

30:47

Sergio Busquets (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

30:47

Foul by Lucas Alario (River Plate).

29:50

Attempt saved. Lucas Alario (River Plate) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Rodrigo Mora with a headed pass.

29:17

Hand ball by Tabaré Viudez (River Plate).

27:57

Attempt missed. Gabriel Mercado (River Plate) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Tabaré Viudez with a cross following a set piece situation.

27:20

Foul by Javier Mascherano (Barcelona).

27:20

Carlos Sánchez (River Plate) wins a free kick on the right wing.

26:21

Neymar (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

26:21

Foul by Gabriel Mercado (River Plate).

26:05

Attempt saved. Rodrigo Mora (River Plate) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Lucas Alario.

25:23

Sergio Busquets (Barcelona) wins a free kick on the left wing.

25:23

Foul by Leonardo Ponzio (River Plate).

23:33

Attempt saved. Dani Alves (Barcelona) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Neymar with a cross.

21:05

Jordi Alba (Barcelona) wins a free kick on the left wing.

21:05

Foul by Carlos Sánchez (River Plate).

20:46

Lionel Messi (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

20:46

Foul by Tabaré Viudez (River Plate).

19:00

Sergio Busquets (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

19:00

Dangerous play by Lucas Alario (River Plate).

18:28

Foul by Dani Alves (Barcelona).

18:28

Tabaré Viudez (River Plate) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

15:11 Booking

Booking Jordi Alba (Barcelona) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

15:08

Foul by Jordi Alba (Barcelona).

15:08

Carlos Sánchez (River Plate) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

12:34

Foul by Dani Alves (Barcelona).

12:34

Leonel Vangioni (River Plate) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

10:32

Attempt saved. Lionel Messi (Barcelona) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Andrés Iniesta.

10:28

Attempt blocked. Lionel Messi (Barcelona) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Luis Suárez with a headed pass.

9:42 Booking

Booking Matías Kranevitter (River Plate) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

9:37

Lionel Messi (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

9:37

Foul by Matías Kranevitter (River Plate).

8:38

Attempt blocked. Andrés Iniesta (Barcelona) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

7:46

Luis Suárez (Barcelona) wins a free kick on the left wing.

7:46

Foul by Jonathan Maidana (River Plate).

5:46

Corner, River Plate. Conceded by Gerard Piqué.

4:48

Jordi Alba (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

4:48

Foul by Leonardo Ponzio (River Plate).

3:01

Corner, River Plate. Conceded by Javier Mascherano.

1:33

Lionel Messi (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

1:33

Eder Balanta (River Plate).

1:20

Javier Mascherano (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

1:20

Foul by Rodrigo Mora (River Plate).

0:58

Foul by Tabaré Viudez (River Plate).

0:58

Dani Alves (Barcelona) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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Guardiola to leave Bayern in summer

 Posted by at 8:22 PM
Dec 202015
 
Guardiola to leave Bayern in summer

Pep Guardiola is to leave Bayern Munich at the end of the season and will be replaced by Carlo Ancelotti.

Guardiola, 44, has been
linked with Manchester City, Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal.

The former Barcelona coach has won two league titles and the German Cup since joining Bayern in summer 2013.

Ex-Chelsea boss Ancelotti, 56, has been on a break since being
sacked by Real Madrid in May 2015 and has signed a three-year deal with Bayern.

Calm Carlo

The German champions are eight points clear at the top of the Bundesliga and will play Italian club Juventus in the last 16 of the Champions League.

“We are grateful to Pep Guardiola for everything he has given our club since 2013,” said Bayern chief executive Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.

“I am convinced that Pep and our team will now work even more intensively towards achieving our major sporting goals – especially as it is now confirmed that Pep is to leave FC Bayern.”

Ancelotti has won the Champions League three times, twice with AC Milan and once at Real Madrid, and guided Chelsea to the Premier League title and FA Cup in 2010.

He recently suggested a preference
to return to the English top flight but has instead decided to join Bayern.

“I am very honoured,” said Ancelotti.” I’ll be in next season to coach the great FC Bayern.”

Rummenigge added: “Carlo is a calm, balanced expert, who knows how to deal with stars and favours a multifaceted style of play – we were looking for this, and we have found it.

“We are looking forward to working with him.”

If Ancelotti wins the Bundesliga with Bayern next season, he will become the second coach to have won league titles in four of Europe’s top six leagues.

Jose Mourinho has won league titles in Portugal, England, Italy and Spain.


Where next for Guardiola?

The 44-year-old has not revealed where his next destination will be.


Chelsea sacked Mourinho on Thursday and have appointed Guus Hiddink until the end of the season. United boss Louis van Gaal is also under pressure following his side’s recent slump in form, which has seen them exit the Champions League at the group stages and lose to Norwich on Saturday.

Guardiola has also been strongly linked with taking over from City boss Manuel Pellegrini in the summer.

Pellegrini’s contract has 18 months to run and the Chilean thinks Guardiola might follow him to the Etihad Stadium.

“I hope he will have the option to work at Manchester City,” he said. “I say that because I love this club and I hope, in the future, he can work here also.

“Pep Guardiola will work in England, I don’t know if it is next season at City or at another club. Some day he’ll come here.”


How good is Guardiola?

The Spaniard was appointed Barcelona boss in 2008 and became the Spanish club’s most successful manager as he led the Catalan club to 13 trophies in his four-year tenure.

He won three league titles, two Champions Leagues and a Copa del Rey while at the Nou Camp.

The former Spain international took a year-long sabbatical before taking over at Bayern Munich on the back of the German club winning the Champions League, Bundesliga and German Cup under Jupp Heynckes.

As well as the league and cup titles, Bayern have also reached the semi-finals of the Champions League in Guardiola’s two seasons in charge, with Real Madrid knocking them out in 2013-14 and Barcelona the following season.

Lionel Messi and Pep Guardiola

Guardiola was in charge at Barcelona for four years, winning three La Liga titles and the Champions League twice

Pep Guardiola

Guardiola is on course to celebrate a third Bundesliga title in three years with Bayern Munich

Bayern Munich manager Pep Guardiola

Guardiola has been strongly linked to take over Manuel Pellegrini’s job at Manchester City

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Welbeck return pushed back again

 Posted by at 4:00 PM
Dec 202015
 

Arsenal forward Danny Welbeck’s return following knee surgery has been pushed back again, manager Arsene Wenger says.

Welbeck has been out since April and the Gunners boss thinks it will be February before the 25 year old is fit.

Wenger had initially said the England international would be fit in September before
revising the date to Christmas.

“He is still not available because of a bone bruising,” Wenger said. “That deteriorated and it is a big blow to us because we cannot rotate.”

Welbeck’s fellow forward Alexis Sanchez has missed three games with a hamstring problem, although he could be fit for Monday’s Premier League game with Manchester City, while Theo Walcott returned from five weeks out with a calf injury earlier this month.

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Dec 202015
 
Fans right to turn on Chelsea players?

Jose Mourinho may have left Chelsea after his sacking on Thursday – but the fall-out from his dismissal was littered all over Stamford Bridge during Saturday’s 3-1 win against Sunderland.

Chelsea’s miraculously improved performance was met with scorn and abuse from large sections of their own support, the finger being pointed firmly in the direction of players who they felt had downed tools and effectively forced Mourinho out.

The sudden upturn was described as “disgraceful” by BBC Sport pundits Mark Lawrenson and Chris Sutton, while Cesc Fabregas and Diego Costa felt the full force of the fury of their own fans, who clearly felt the club’s players had been instrumental in Mourinho’s demise.


Are Chelsea’s fans right to blame the players?

Chelsea

Chelsea fans displayed banners showing their support for Jose Mourinho at Stamford Bridge during the game

Make no mistake – there was a toxic atmosphere inside Stamford Bridge and it was almost impossible to find anyone who blamed Mourinho for the dreadful performances that left Chelsea in 16th place, one point off the relegation places, before kick-off.

The first real show of support for Mourinho came in the shape of a banner draped from the Matthew Harding Stand – which was still fluttering after the final whistle – that read: “Jose Mourinho: Simply The Best”.

The true strength of pro-Mourinho feeling was revealed before kick-off when the names of Fabregas and Costa were read out and loud jeers swept around Stamford Bridge – repeated when the pair were substituted in the second half.

And, perhaps even more remarkably, each Chelsea goal was greeted with chants for Mourinho as much as a celebration, the second from Pedro met with a pointed and poisonous chant demanding to know why these same players had suddenly lifted their levels.

It is a very fair question given a run of four home defeats in eight Premier League games before Saturday.

Diego Costa walks off the pitch at Stamford Bridge

According to reports, Diego Costa was showered, changed and heading out of Stamford Bridge by one minute past five after the win over Sunderland

Mourinho was supported with chants and banners, many making further accusations against the players.

One read: “The 3 rats. Hazard, Cesc and Costa”. Another was emblazoned with the words “30 Pieces Of Silver Judas. The Players v Jose, One Of Us” and “Our Jose”.

This was all played out under the gaze and within earshot of the man who made that sacrifice, Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, sitting next to club legend Didier Drogba on a visit back to Stamford Bridge, and newly appointed interim boss Guus Hiddink, who must calm this mutinous atmosphere having
taken charge until the end of the season.

The better Chelsea looked, with Oscar seemingly rejuvenated and even Branislav Ivanovic looking more like his old self, the more the discontent grew in a surreal first half.

When the chant “Stand Up For The Special One” started up it was hard to see a Chelsea fan not on their feet. The love aimed at their former manager was that strong.

The suspicion that Chelsea’s players were suddenly finding their old form now Mourinho was out of the door did not help the mood.







Steve Holland, in charge until Hiddink takes over, said: “Obviously the supporters have a right to express their opinion but clearly the fans had a view on certain things and it is their right to do that.

“I’m sure if the players play and compete like they did on Saturday then I don’t see any reason why the supporters won’t be happy with that.”

Set against the desperate fare served up this season, this much-improved performance meant many Chelsea fans had every right to ask where they were when they were not so good, to clean up the actual chant, and whether it really was player power (or lack of it on the pitch) that brought Mourinho down.


Are Chelsea’s fans wrong to blame the players?

Jose Mourino and John Terry together during the 2015 League Cup final

Captain John Terry has dismissed reports of a power struggle in the Chelsea dressing room

One of the gravest allegations you can make against any professional sportsman is that they are not trying or not giving their best.

And yet that was exactly the accusation aimed at Chelsea’s players by large sections of their own support.

One thing is certain: there was more of a spring in Chelsea’s step from kick-off, and more freedom, with Oscar unveiling two backheels and a rabona cross early on to almost confirm the handbrake is off.

The nervousness returned when Sunderland substitute Fabio Borini made it 3-1 but ultimately this was as easy as it has been all season for Chelsea – a game Mourinho might have relished to pick his players off the floor had he still been in charge.







Sunderland’s incompetence certainly helped to settle early nerves. What would Mourinho have given for such a soft start and two easy goals?

Chelsea captain John Terry insisted there was no player power at work and that they simply got on with the football and left decisions to Abramovich and his cohorts.

There are two sides to every story and there was no doubt Mourinho seemed derailed from day one this season, particularly after the clash with team doctor Eva Carneiro that has provided a sub-plot to the whole season.

He has seemed distracted and locked on course for confrontation too often, so he cannot simply be absolved from blame. If he takes the credit for titles (and he more or less did at his final press conference at Leicester City on Monday) then he must take blame too.

Mourinho, however, has a powerful hold on Chelsea’s fans, understandable given the success he has brought them, and it seems this force of personality has led to the supporters more or less putting total responsibility on the players.

Chelsea’s fans are well within their right to apportion blame – and so many of these players have simply not performed this season – but logic dictates Mourinho had to have played a part in his own departure.


Will Mourinho find love elsewhere?

A cafe sign wishes Jose Mourinho good luck outside Stamford Bridge

Could United fans really embrace Mourinho the same way the Chelsea faithful have?

And, more specifically, at Manchester United?

As news of
Norwich City’s victory at United filtered to west London there was suddenly the prospect that the man having love showered upon him at Stamford Bridge could end up being adored at Old Trafford.

Louis van Gaal’s reign is plunging into crisis. Mourinho’s camp issued a statement on Saturday saying he will continue to live in England while insisting his batteries are fully charged and he has no intention of taking a break or sabbatical.

His trusted former assistant Holland said as much.







Holland, who will join Mourinho for a pre-Christmas farewell meal, said: “He will be back in football quickly because there will be big clubs that want him, and secondly because he needs football. In my opinion he’s not the sort of guy who’s going to spend six or seven months at home doing nothing in particular.”

Join the dots and this is not what a manager struggling desperately at one of the world’s biggest clubs want to hear.

Just as when former Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers was fighting for his future and Jurgen Klopp was available after leaving Borussia Dortmund, Van Gaal will feel the heat from the presence of an unemployed Mourinho, heat that will only get more intense with every bad result.

Mourinho felt the love from Chelsea on Saturday. Will he be feeling it from Manchester United if Van Gaal’s struggles continue?

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Dec 202015
 
Van Gaal 'worried' about job future

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal said he is “worried” about his job after a
shock 2-1 loss to Norwich.

The result handed United a third defeat in a row in all competitions and are now winless in six games.

Cameron Jerome and Alex Tettey netted for the visitors, while Anthony Martial replied for the hosts.

Asked if he feared for his position, van Gaal said: “Yes of course I am worried about that because I know that belief in a manager is very important.”

The Dutchman, 64, could not give a definite answer when asked if he will be given time to turn the situation around at Old Trafford.

“Yes I think so but I never know, in this world, you never know. It is not up to me, but we shall see,” he added.

‘I am – or shall I say was – a successful manager’

Ryan Giggs

Assistant manager Ryan Giggs barked out instructions from the touchline against Norwich, while manager Louis van Gaal sat on the bench

Van Gaal is out of contract at the end of the 2016-17 season and there has been speculation that
Jose Mourinho will become the next United manager  after
being sacked by Chelsea on Thursday.

The Portuguese says he
wants an immediate return to management and has been linked with the Old Trafford job, as has Bayern Munich boss Pep Guardiola who is to
clarify his own future on Sunday.

“That’s the football world. I know that, my board knows that, my players know that,” van Gaal said when asked if the pressure was building on him.

“I don’t think a change of management shall bring direct success – but that is what I believe. Maybe that is not so interesting.

“I am always evaluating myself because I think that is an aspect of the philosophy I have. But the philosophy is also making an evolution – I am not the same coach I was 25 years ago.

“So, you are always evaluating and of course that philosophy is very important for me. Because of that I am – or maybe I have to say now, was – a very successful manager.”


‘It was not good enough’


Man Utd not good enough – Van Gaal

Defeat meant Manchester United have now gone six games in all competitions without victory for the first time since 1998.

United had 70% possession against Norwich, but could only muster two shots on target as they were booed off by their own supporters.

The Red Devils face a testing festive period, starting on Boxing Day against Stoke at the Britannia Stadium, before they host Chelsea at Old Trafford two days later. They then face managerless Swansea on 2 January.

Van Gaal added: “The main thing is that you have to be professional and do the things that you have to do and work very hard to come out of this bad period.

“It was not good enough. You have to win against Norwich. We know that. Now we prepare for the Stoke game with professionalism and spirit, that is the only message I can give [to you].”

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