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Monday, May 26, 2008

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Cech tormented by Chelsea defeat

Petr Cech remains tormented by Chelsea Football Club’s UEFA Champions League final defeat.

The Blues lost the premier club competition in European football to Manchester United in a dramatic penalty shoot-out, and it will take their Czech Republic international goalkeeper some time to get over. "To lose in the Champions League final cannot be forgotten," Cech told his personal website. "The only way we can forget about it at some point is to get to the Champions League final again as soon as possible and win it."It is a massive disappointment for me. If we were the worst team and lost clearly 3-0, then it would not make me feel as sorry as it does this way. It is really very difficult to cope with the loss. "We were unbelievably unlucky in the game."

Nicolas Anelka criticises under-fire Avram Grant - Force To Take Pen when he didn't want to

With Avram Grant waiting to discover his fate, Nicolas Anelka has added to the mood of despondency at Stamford Bridge by openly criticising his under-fire manager.
With the Israeli already fearing the worst, despite leading Chelsea to within one penalty kick of winning the biggest prize in European club football for the first time in their history, Anelka has added his weight to the debate. The France forward, know as "Le Sulk" says he is fed up of being played out of position, and also claims he was introduced into Wednesday's Champions League final without being given the chance to warm-up.
Anelka has failed to make a significant impact since he joined Chelsea from Bolton Wanderers in January. He has often had to settle for a place on the bench, behind Didier Drogba, or has been deployed in wide positions. However his season reached a low-point in Moscow when, after coming on for the final ten minutes of extra time, Anelka's decisive penalty was saved by Edwin van der Sar.
"I didn't come here to play on the left or right," he said. "When I came here, people told me I would play in a 4-4-2. In England, I no longer need to prove that I am better through the middle. Since I arrived, I haven't played in my position. Never as a number nine, always on the left or the right.

"Until now, I haven't said anything. I was a newcomer, I haven't wanted to make a story out of it because I still didn't know the club. But from next season, I insist I will no longer be the little newcomer."
Anelka was also critical of Grant's decision to throw him on for the final few minutes of the final.
"At no point did I think I was going to come on," he added. "I was on the bench for 110 minutes and suddenly I am asked to play, not even a minute after I was sent out to warm up. I don't know if that has ever happened in a Champions League final, in a match of that intensity, that a player has gone on to the pitch without having warmed up. When you go on, you have to be ready to run!"
"I was asked to take one of the first five kicks. But I said: 'That is out of the question, I have come on basically as a right-back and you want me to take a penalty.' So I had to go in seventh but Van der Sar pushed away my shot. All the better for him, that is the game."

Lampard to resume Chelsea talks

Frank Lampard is to open fresh talks with Chelsea over a new contract after England's friendly internationals. Fabio Capello's side take on USA at Wembley and then travel to play Trinidad and Tobago on 1st June.England midfielder Lampard revealed he will discuss a new deal to keep him at Stamford Bridge on his return. Lampard's current contract expires next summer and talks over a long-term extension were put on hold for the duration of last season.But following Chelsea's dramatic penalty shoot-out heartbreak against Manchester United in the Champions League final on Wednesday night, Lampard is confident a deal can be agreed."I have got to talk to the club," said Lampard. "My contract has obviously been the last thing on my mind in the last six weeks, but I will sit down and talk with them after the England games.

Terry spitting mad over Tevez row,16368,1778_3600321,00.html
Chelsea captain John Terry has denied spitting at Manchester United striker Carlos Tevez in Wednesday's Champions League final.

Tempers flared in extra-time in Moscow when Tevez opted against giving the ball to Petr Cech by kicking the ball out for a throw-in after they had intentionally kicked the ball out of play.
Despite Chelsea using the same tactic twice themselves during the game a handful of players, including Terry, confronted the Argentina international about his behaviour.
A confrontation occurred that resulted in Didier Drogba slapping Nemanja Vidic in the face, which saw the Ivory Coast striker sent from the field.
Terry admits to some brief argy-bargy, but he strenuously denies any untoward behaviour towards Tevez.
"There was some pushing and shoving, I admit that," he told The Sun. "But no spitting, that is not my style.
"No way would I spit at another player."

Man Utd's Evra defends "gentleman" Drogba - May 23, 2008

Manchester United fullback Patrice Evra has jumped to the defence of Chelsea striker Didier Drogba after his Champions League final dismissal.
Evra reflected: "I did not understand it, I have not seen anything. I was told that he had given a slap on Vidic. Even when he walked off, I felt for him ... Didier did not deserve it because he is a great player and outside the ground, he is a gentleman.
"It's a shame for him."

Kenyon ready to splash the cash,16368,1773_3600713,00.html

Peter Kenyon has declared Chelsea are set for a summer shopping spree in order to bridge the gap to all-conquering Manchester United.

Chelsea narrowly missed out to United by two points in the Premier League title race and the Blues also suffered penalty shoot-out heartbreak against the same opponents in Wednesday's Champions League final.
The failure to land a trophy this season has heaped pressure on manager Avram Grant and chief executive Kenyon has admitted his disappointment at finishing behind United.
Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich is now expected to make available a £100million transfer kitty and Kenyon has revealed the club are only looking to bring in big names, with the likes of Milan playmaker Kaka and Real Madrid ace Robinho thought to be prime targets.
"We will be bringing in a couple of players," Kenyon said in the Daily Express.
"But we are looking at a very thin market from a quality point of view, and it's realistic to say we're only looking at a small number of players.
"We're looking at players who have the potential to be star names. When you look at what we've already got, are they better than that?
"Manchester United set the benchmark for transfer fees last year. I didn't expect them to go out and spend that much.
"But what this season has proved is that we have a squad of real depth. It's more about tweaking than a rebuild.
"Three months ago, we were involved in four competitions, six weeks ago we were still in two and we got knocked out of the last one.
"It's disappointing from that point of view, but we're going to regroup from that and come back better next season.
"It's been an interesting season, but you don't like finishing second and as runners-up. Given the standards we've set at the club, that's not something we've settled for."
Kenyon is also confident Chelsea will be able to keep hold of their top players this summer, despite speculation that Didier Drogba is heading for Milan and that Internazionale have set their sights on Frank Lampard.
"We're pretty confident that the players we want to keep, we'll keep," Kenyon concluded.

Chelsea offer Terry counselling - May 23, 2008

Chelsea may offer counselling to skipper John Terry after his reaction to missing a penalty in this week's Champions League final.
The Telegraph says Terry was devastated after the match and Chelsea sources say the club are even prepared to offer counselling. There is, however, huge confidence that Terry will overcome the disappointment

Inter Milan president Moratti feels for Chelsea captain Terry - May 23, 2008

Inter Milan president Massimo Moratti had great sympathy for Chelsea skipper John Terry after his spotkick nightmare in Moscow on Wednesday.
Moratti was in the stands for the Champions League final and reflected: "Of course, I saw Frank Lampard, Cristiano Ronaldo and other great champions, including Terry, who missed that penalty. I am sorry for him, he has a big heart, but life sometimes is really cruel."

Mourinho - Blues should have won
Last Updated: Fri, 23 May 2008 12:35
Former Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho feels the Blues deserved to win the Champions League final against Manchester United.
The Portuguese tactician began the season as Chelsea boss but quit after his relationship with owner Roman Abramovich appeared to break down.He was replaced by Avram Grant, who guided his charges to the brink of Premiership success as well as the final of Europe's elite club competition, only to be pipped by United in both competitions.Mourinho, himself a Champions League winner with Porto, suffered heartache in the competition at the semi-final stage on two occasions with the Stamford Bridge side and he felt that it should have been third time lucky for his former side in Moscow on Wednesday night."I'm sad about it," he told sports daily O Jogo. "I think that for the 'Blues family', losing a semi-final of the Champions League to a phantom goal, losing another semi-final on penalties and losing a final on penalties is too tough and unfair."Especially when Chelsea were the team that was closer to winning it. There are marvellous players there and they did not deserve the defeat, but football is like that and life goes on."But the self-appointed 'Special One' did pay tribute to his former rival in the United dug-out."Congratulations to Manchester United, to a great manager who is Alex Ferguson and to all their players, but especially to Cristiano and Nani," he added. "Given that Portuguese teams only win European competitions very occasionally with lots of years in between, it's important that Portuguese players manage to lift these trophies."

Abramovich sticking with Chelsea - and wants Kaka - May 23, 2008

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich will stick with the London club - and intends to prise Kaka away from AC Milan, it has been revealed.
DiarioSport says Abramovich has told close friends he will continue to pump his millions into Chelsea, despite Wednesday's glorious Champions League failure. And he sees Kaka as the man to deliver the changes he wants to bring to the Blues next season.
Roberto Mancini, Inter Milan's coach, is the man Abramovich wants to take charge next season. However, football chief Frank Arnesen is under pressure, according to sources.

Chelsea chief Kenyon set for crunch talks with Ten Cate, Clarke - May 26, 2008

Chelsea chief Peter Kenyon will hold crunch talks with coaches Henk ten Cate and Steve Clarke this week.
Both men are expected to leave Stamford Bridge following the sacking of Avram Grant on Saturday. Ten Cate and Clarke are due to meet Kenyon on Wednesday, says The Times.

Chelsea to bid £50M for Liverpool's Torres - May 25, 2008

Chelsea are ready to offer Liverpool a staggering £50 MILLION for striker Fernando Torres.
The Mail on Sunday says Stamford Bridge owner Roman Abramovich is ready to smash the world transfer record to land the 24-year-old Spaniard.
Abramovich was prepared to pay that much for Thierry Henry when he first took over at Chelsea and he has given chief executive Peter Kenyon permission to offer the same amount for a brilliant marksman who scored 33 goals in his debut season at Anfield.
"There is a desire among certain people at Liverpool to sell at the right price," said an insider last night. "It's just a case of whether they have the nerve to incur the wrath of the Liverpool fans."
Disruption reigns at Anfield, with the ownership of the club as well as the future of manager Rafa Benitez and chief executive Rick Parry uncertain.
Tom Hicks says he is desperate to raise funds to take sole control and the sale of Torres only a year after he arrived from Atletico Madrid for £23m could be good business.

Chelsea teammates fear losing Drogba "leadership" - May 26, 2008

Chelsea teammates fear losing the influence of Didier Drogba should the Ivorian be sold in the summer.
A senior Chelsea insider told the Sunday Mirror: "Drogba is a real leader in the dressing-room."
That may come as a shock to those who see him as a moody prima donna.
"Not true," said the source. "If he is that bad, how come the club want £24million for him?
And if there's one person who wants to buy him that's Jose Mourinho when he lands his next job.
"When Jose had money available, Drogba was first on his list. That must tell you something. Didier keeps the French-speaking players as a unit in the dressing-room. A real leader. He would be very hard to replace."

John Terry Is A Courageous Man - Capello
England boss Fabio Capello has paid tribute to Chelsea captain John Terry following his miss in the penalty shootout against Manchester United in the Champions League final last Wednesday...

The Blues skipper stepped up to take the final penalty of the shootout, and following Cristiano Ronaldo's surprise miss for Manchester United, had Terry converted, Chelsea would have won their first ever Champions League title, in their first ever final.However, having slipped as he struck the penalty, he saw it clip the post and go wide, and United now famously went on to win the shootout in sudden death after Nicolas Anelka's effort was saved by Edwin van der Sar.Added to this allegations that the battling defender spat at Carlos Tevez during the course of the game and rumours he would lose the captaincy permanently to Manchester United's Rio Ferdinand - who, as if to add insult to injury, captained the Red Devils in Moscow - it has been a miserable week for John Terry.He has issued an open letter via the club website to the fans, apologising to all those he felt he let down with his miss. But Capello, crucially for Terry's captaincy hopes, had nothing but good things to say about the 27-year-old."It takes courage to take a penalty in those circumstances and once you have the courage to take a penalty then of course you can make a mistake. That's the lottery of penalties," Capello told the Daily Mirror.“There's nothing dramatic with that, but John Terry is a courageous man."Capello, appointed as a Sven-like foreign saviour to bring success to English football, is confident that he can lead the side to the final of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, of course being unable to compete in Euro 2008 due to his predecessor, Steve McClaren's failure to qualify.With the Italian's record for almost instant success being second to none at every club he has coached, he has every right to be confident.He continued: “I think I can take England further than Bobby Robson in 1990 [the semi-finals of the World Cup], why not? I have always worked to arrive at the top, why should I think differently? “I have been with Roma, Juventus, Milan, Real Madrid and always wanted to go to the very top. I don’t understand why people feel differently. We need to be ambitious.“We have good material here and have been competitive against every team. My ambition is to arrive at the top. You have to work to change the mentality.“I believe we can do that but the players must also believe. By September I will have the full picture.”Chet Winter,

Chelsea chiefs push three big names to Abramovich - May 27, 2008

Three big-name coaches are being pushed by Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich's closest allies as they consider their options after the dismissal of Avram Grant.

The Times says Eugene Tenenbaum has told the owner that Chelsea need a strong manager to regain control of the dressing-room, leading him to champion the cause of Guus Hiddink, the Dutch coach of Russia. As well as an impeccable CV, Hiddink has a reputation as a disciplinarian and enjoys a good relationship with Abramovich.
Eugene Shvidler, another of Abramovich's key aides, has mentioned Dick Advocaat, another Dutchman, whose stock is high after leading Zenit St Petersburg to victory in the Uefa Cup final.
Blues chief executive Peter Kenyon is talking up the credentials of Mark Hughes. As well as being impressed with Hughes's work at Blackburn Rovers, the chief executive is also acutely aware of the need to appease the fans and Hughes was a popular player during his three-year stay at the club in the 1990s.

Chelsea No2 Ten Cate: I know I'm safe - May 27, 2008

Henk ten Cate is convinced he is safe from the sack at Chelsea as he prepares to meet with chief executive Peter Kenyon tomorrow.
"A half hour before the message about Chelsea dismissing Grant was officially known, I was called by the chief executive, Peter Kenyon," Ten Cate told Voetbal International. "He informed me that the departure of Grant would have no impact on me. So I'd rather go by that than all those newspaper reports."
On the scheduled meeting with Kenyon, Ten Cate shrugged: "I have already had one such evaluation in January and when we spoke, we said we would do it again after the season. For me it is simple. I have a contract until 2010 and I am at Chelsea as their No1 assistant manager."


Aravind said...

Bring back Jose !!!