Tuesday, March 6th, 2012
Comment & analysis round-up
Quote of the day: “It will be hell for whoever succeeds him. The move to sack Villas-Boas is strange, but not so strange to me because of what I went through there. Some things are known, like the relations with the owner and his relationship with some of the players. Villas-Boas is a champion and will continue to be. He needed to replace at least seven or eight players, even since I was there, but he failed.” – Luiz Felipe Scolari.
Runner-up: “All we have ever said is to keep putting points on the board,” the defender said. “Our last two away games have shown the professionalism in the camp and that has been fantastic. We have to continue that. We have big games coming up. Each game will be like a cup final. I know that’s a cliche but it’s true. We have just got to keep winning games. If we do that, we will put pressure on the other teams. It is about keeping our own house in order and making sure we remain resilient and keep putting points on the board.” – Rio Ferdinand.
Today’s top stories
Where do Chelsea go from here?
Chelsea make their move for Guardiola (Martin Lipton, Daily Mirror) “Chelsea have made their initial approach to tempt Pep Guardiola to Stamford Bridge as the Barcelona boss was warned he would be walking into a living ‘hell’. The Mirror revealed on Sunday that Nou Camp chief Guardiola is Roman Abramovich’s prime target to replace sacked Andre Villas-Boas. Tentative feelers have already been put out by intermediaries seeking to put a deal together which could see Guardiola quit the world and European champions to be Abramovich’s eighth manager since 2004. Sven Goran Eriksson and former Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez have also put themselves in the frame.”
Jose Mourinho wants £12m a year and Cristiano Ronaldo if he’s to make Chelsea return (Matt Law, Daily Express) Jose Mourinho will hold Roman Abramovich to ransom if he is asked to return as Chelsea’s saviour by insisting he remains the world’s best-paid manager on £12million a year and demanding to bring Cristiano Ronaldo with him. Former Chelsea boss Mourinho is high on owner Abramovich’s list of permanent replacements for the sacked Andre Villas-Boas. Barcelona’s Pep Guardiola is understood to be Chelsea’s dream choice, but he will have to be convinced to walk away from the Nou Camp and then talked out of the idea of taking a year off.”
Abramovich targets German Loew (Neil Ashton, Daily Mail)
Rafael Benítez makes a pitch for Chelsea job (Dom Fifield & David Hytner, Guardian)
Sven-Goran Eriksson says Abramovich can make Chelsea great again (Kevin McCarra, Guardian)
Chelsea stars Ashley Cole, Frank Lampard and Didier Drogba face axe in Roman Abramovich’s summer sale (Jason Burt, Daily Telegraph)
Moyes is the perfect fit, but when did that ever matter to Abramovich? (James Lawton, Independent) What price David Moyes to inherit the fractured empire from which Andre Villas-Boas is the latest to be expelled? A leading bookmaker says 12-1, which is only absurdly long if you forget it is the job Luiz Felipe Scolari – who was burnt in effigy in the streets of Rio and Sao Paulo before winning the World Cup for Brazil and going swiftly to the sword at Stamford Bridge – was yesterday describing as hell on earth. Moyes, 48, has every quality required to make a dynasty except the larding of football celebrity and that ultimate achievement made possible by the financial means he has never enjoyed. Nor is he a friend or crony of Roman Abramovich. He understands, however, and better than most anyone you can think of, the realities of football, the need to get players performing at optimum levels, to win their respect and a little of their fear and, most of all, the need to be the master of his own situation in a game to which he devotes arguably more hours than any other man on earth.”
Patience is a virtue – in football as in so much else (Independent leading article)
Roman scores own goal! Firing AVB may have scared off top names (Matt Lawton, Daily Mail)
Hundreds of millions later Chelsea still lack the ultimate pot of gold (Dominic Fifield, Guardian)
AVB should never have taken the job (Ian Wright, Sun)
Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has the power but still there’s no Champions League glory (Paul Hayward, Daily Telegraph)
Can Arsenal turn it round against AC Milan?
Wenger planning to blitz Milan with four strikers (Jack Pitt-Brooke, Independent)
David Dein’s son… the Arsenal exodus and why Van Persie could be next to go (Neil Ashton, Daily Mail)
Harry Redknapp & England
FA ask Redknapp to confirm he wants the England job (Martin Lipton, Daily Mirror)
FA look at Roy & Pearce (Dan King, Sun)
Is Liverpool’s Luis Suárez simply trying to do too much on the pitch? (Michael Cox, Guardian)
Bayern, Mönchengladbach, Schalke – does any one want to win the league? (Rafa Honigstein), Rome derby delight helps Lazio manager Edy Reja sleep easier at last (Paolo Bandini) & If Real Zaragoza go down it could be permanent. (Sid Lowe).