Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Dembele doesn’t want Barca exit.

Ousmane Dembele wants to stay at Barcelona and fight for a place in Ronald Koeman’s starting XI despite interest from Manchester United; Sky Deutschland reports.

 The Frenchman wants to show his worth to the La Blaugrana cause having played little or no part in recent seasons.

Ousmane Dembele was on the bench for Barcelona’s opening match of the season against Villareal.

Kolasinac close to Leverkusen move

Sead Kolasinac is now inching closing to a move back to Germany; SOCCER PUNCH understands.

Bayer Leverkusen had an issue in negotiations with his representatives due to his wages but the problem has now been sorted out.

Westham bid €25m for Milenkovic

According to Italian Journalist Gianluca Di Marzio, Westham have made their first offer for Nikola Milenkovic.

The fee is said to be in the range of €25 million but Fiorentina have not responded to the bid as they are considering the proposal.

Nikola Milenkovic is an important part of the Fiorentina Squad.

Nainggolan poised for Cagliari switch

Radja Nainggolan is set to complete his permanent transfer to Cagliari after spending last season there on loan; according to SkySports in Italy

A fee of €12 Million will be agreed between Inter Milan and Cagliari for his transfer which could see two Cagliari players move the other way.

Costa rejects wolves move

Juventus Winger Douglas Costa isn’t willing to depart the Allainz Stadium for a move to Wolverhampton Wanderers; according to Corriere dello Sport .

Wolves and Juventus reportedly agreed a transfer fee for his transfer but Costa rebuked a move.

The South American is happy and settled in Italy.

Lampard, Mourinho play down touchline incident

Lampard and Mourinho were involved in a war of words during the Carabao cup fourth round tie between Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea.

Chelsea were leading by one nil when camera pictured Lampard and Mourinho having a go at themselves on the touchline.

Speaking during his post-match conference, Lampard was asked about the incident which he played down saying they were just having fun.

"We were having some fun on the line. I get on well with Jose and I think he said that to me,"

"I commented on the fact that he seemed to speak more with the referee than he speaks with his players so it is just a moment with us.

"I have a huge respect for Jose, no matter what he says on the touchline. I think he was feeling the sense of the first half and how it was. All was well at the end of the game and that will never change." 

Mourinho too was asked about the touchline verbally-mouthed incident 

With Frank the most important thing is my feelings towards him rather than any words we exchanged," 

"I owe him everything he gave me, he always gave me everything he had as a player and I never forget that. My feelings towards him will always be feelings of how much I owe him for how much of an incredible player, friend he was.

"The only thing I was telling him, just an opinion of an old coach to a young talented coach, which was when the players need us it is when they are losing, when they are winning we don't need to be the protagonists of the touchline, we need to be there when they are losing.

"In the last match when they were losing 3-0 I felt really sorry for him because he was sad and quiet in his chair. In terms of football I can't teach him anything, he knows football, it is just an opinion, stay on the touchline when your team is losing and stay calm when your team is winning." 

Lampard: “Mendy was very Good”

Edouard Mendy made his Chelsea debut in the 5-4 penalty shootout loss to rivals Tottenham Hotspur on Tuesday night.

The Senegalese impressed making a couple of saves in the first half and in the second half despite being beaten five times in the shootout which left his manager Lampard Purring.

“I thought he was very good. He made a couple of good saves, one particularly good save,"

"He came and caught a few balls, even the one where he came and didn’t catch, the idea that he wants to be positive is not a bad thing. Very, very pleased with every part of his game, really.”

Lampard thinks Mount will move on from his spotkick miss but laments his side’s inability to kill the game off when they had the chance.

“I don’t think a shattering blow is what it should be. A disappointing night to get knocked out of the Carabao Cup," 

"Mason will have many more nights for this club and for his country where he will play in games with huge importance on them and he will be the deciding factor on a positive note in them.

"He has my support for all times and the team and everybody around it. You miss a penalty, it is a collective when you get to a game like this.

"We were dominant and we want to score more goals at that point because of the amount of possession. Couple of good chances, Callum [Hudson-Odoi] had a good chance at the end of the first half.

"Tottenham will have felt that hard and they changed their game to go longer in their build which meant that our fantastic press in the first half wasn’t as relevant up the pitch.

"They turned us round and made us run backwards, rather than pressing forwards and that becomes really difficult to be fair to the lads. We could have been better on the ball in the second half, maybe dealt with the physical nature of the Spurs game but it slightly changed the case of the game.

"They had chances in the second half but so did we. At 1-0, the second goal finishes it for us and we didn’t get that."

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Mount’s missed spotkick sends Tottenham through

     TOTTENHAM 1-1 CHELSEA (5-4 on pens)
Chelsea faced spurs on Tuesday night in the fourth round of the Carabao cup after the Lilywhites were awarded winners of the third round clash against Leyton Orient which could not be played.

Edouard Mendy made his Chelsea debut while Chilwell made his first Chelsea start tonight as Azpilicueta captained the side.

Timo Werner’s first chelsea goal in the firsthalf was not enough as Tottenham rallied back to force the game into penalties courtesy of a strike from Erik Lamela.

Tottenham Hotspur converted all of their five spotkicks with Harry Kane taking the last one but it was Mason Mount’s who missed chelsea’s fifth spotkick which ultimately sent spurs through to the next round.

Chelsea are back in action on next Saturday at home to Crystal Palace while Tottenham battle Manchester United at Old trafford.

Monday, September 28, 2020

Spurs have decided to bid for Skriniar

According to Football Insider, Tottenham Hotspur are now willing to make a bid for Inter Milan defender Milan Skriniar.

Over the weekend, The North London Club considered making a bid after assessing their options and have now made their decision to sought after him.

Dortmund rule out Sancho sale

According to SkySports, Borussia Dortmund are ruling out the sale of Jadon Sancho in this current transfer window.

The Black and Yellows have given Manchester United the opportunity to sign him earlier in the window which they failed to do stalling on meeting the €120m valuation for him.

Diawara emerges as potential option for Arsenal

Arsenal have included AS Roma’s Amadou Diawara as a potential target before the window runs out; according to a report from CalcioMercato.

Although, the Gunners are unwilling to meet the €30m valuation set on him.

Southampton interested in Veerman

Southampton have shown interest in signing 21-year-old Midfielder Joey Veerman; according to Voetbal International 

However, They would face strong competition for his signature as a team from the spanish La Liga is also keen on him.

The Heerenveen Midfielder’s deal runs out in the summer of 2024 which means the saints have to pay top money to sign him.

Lampard: “Chilwell, Mendy fit for Spurs clash”

Ben Chilwell and Edouard Mendy have been included in the squad to face Tottenham Hotspur tomorrow night.

Lampard confirmed the availability of the newbies speaking today in his pre-match conference this afternoon.

However, Ziyech and Pulisic won’t be involved as they are in recovery phases of their respective injuries.

"Mendy and Chilwell are in the squad tomorrow," "They are fit and we will see if they start or not. Ziyech and Pulisic are not far away but they are still in a recovery phase. It is too early for them both."

Lampard has also noticed good signs from Edouard Mendy and claims he has settled in well with the team.

"It is all very positive from the early signs and interactions," "Just as a man on the training pitch. He has settled very well in the first few days and we have made him feel welcome as always. It is competition. He is a good goalkeeper and we know a lot about him. We will see how we go."

Lampard: “Kepa has been unfairly criticized”

Kepa Arrizabalaga was dropped from Chelsea’s Starting lineup against Westbrom last weekend.

Today in his pre-match conference ahead of the Carabao Cup game against Tottenham Hotspur, Lampard was asked if Kepa has played his last game for Chelsea now that Edouard Mendy has been signed.

 "No, I won't go to that point. It's been a hard time for him. Kepa is a young man and a lot of the spotlight has been unfair."

The Blues Boss was also asked to address the future of German Defender Antonio Ruediger and Victor Moses who has returned to Chelsea from his loan spell at Inter Milan

"I wouldn't assume anything (on Rudiger) I will make no assumption,"  "At the moment Victor isn't in that position with us, he hasn't been part of the bubble. We will see how the week goes," 

Lampard believes there is always room for improvement after Westbrom almost stole victory from the hands of his side last time out.

"They were clear individual mistakes, you can't hide from them," 

 "The players held their hands up. We have to take it on the chin. The positive we got a point from that position, but of course, we wanted more.

"I am not making excuses, but some of the work we put in last year was why we were successful. off the ball our work was great. We haven't had the chance to work as much this year. We are in a process, we have to fight through it. Every game is an opportunity to improve"

Westham warned against selling Rice

Declan Rice has been linked to Chelsea on numerous occasions in this summer transfer window.

However, Former Westham Midfielder Joe Cole has warned his former club against selling their prized asset Declan Rice for whatever price.

Cole who also played for fellow londoners Chelsea thinks it will be a huge gamble for the hammers to let go for Rice.

“It would be a big gamble to let him go because he is the most important player in that dressing room.

“We talk about what he is worth as an asset to the club financially but how much is it worth to stay in the Premier League?

“When you have got the back three and him and [Tomas] Soucek, and Noble to come in, all of a sudden you have got a nice solid base to build on there.

“We have talked about the disconnect between the ownership group and the fans and I think it will be a step too far if they let him go.

“I don’t know what’s in the lad’s heart or head, what does he want to do, but he is a fantastic player, a fantastic lad and a big asset to this club. He is so important to this West Ham team.”

Sunday, September 27, 2020

Dest to complete Barcelona move today

Sergino Dest will travel to Barcelona to complete his move to La Blaugrana from AFC Ajax; according to a report from Esports RAC1

The Defender played his last game for Ajax coming off the bench in a 2-1 win against Vitesse.

Dest who has already said his “farewells” to his teammate will complete his transfer to Barcelona on Sunday.

Otamendi included in deal for Ruben Dias

According to Fabrizio Romano , Nicolas Otamendi will be included in a deal to bring Ruben dias from Benfica.

Benfica have reached an agreement on personal terms with Otamendi and he will sign until 2023 while Dias will sign for City until 2025.

Ruben Dias will fly to Manchester in the next few hours to complete his medical.

Burnley to bid for Christie

Burnley are looking to bid for Ryan Christie who is on the book at Celtic; according to a report from Daily record.

 The 25-year-old has a contract with the scottish club until 2022.

Schalke 04 sack David Wagner

FC Schalke 04 have today sacked Manager David Wagner from his role as Headcoach; SOCCER PUNCH can confirm.

According to an information from the club’s official website, Schalke have relieved Wagner of his duties with immediate effect following last night’s 3-1 defeat to Werder Bremen.

Lampard: “Silva will be fantastic for us”

Thiago Silva was part of a Chelsea defence that conceded three goals to Westbrom in a woeful defensive firsthalf display.

The Experienced Defender gifted Callum Robinson his second goal before Chelsea failed to defend a corner properly which lead to a third goal from Kyle Bartley.

Speaking Post-match, Lampard believes Silva will come good and wants him to forget his unconvincing premier league debut.

"Thiago Silva is going to be fantastic for us. He has been incredible in his career and absolutely, I will not look at him," 

"I can talk about the misses, they are clear and I am open and honest about that. We are a team but we have to react around that and, to be fair, the team did in the second half. But, there is nothing on Thiago, I am sure he will stand up and say it was a mistake.

"But other than that, I thought he was pretty faultless in the game. That’s his first Premier League game done and in the bank. We will get a lot more from him as well especially as he gets fitter and as the whole squad get fitter."

Lampard was also unhappy about how his team played on-the-ball thinking they didn’t put Westbrom under pressure in the first half.

"It was three defensive mistakes for three goals. They scored with their three attempts on target, which made it very difficult," 

"We controlled the game other than that. We had some chances and the question was how much character would we come out with second half. I always felt we could do it, but it is still two points lost.

"There was a lack of urgency in our game. We can move the ball quicker, the movement of the ball was slow in the first half. When we started to move it quicker and cut through them we became more dangerous.

"It needed a couple of changes, both players who came on did that. There were positives in our performance.

"But I would be stupid to say we can make three mistakes, give ourselves a mountain to climb and be happy with that.

"We have to accept the fact that this is a process in real time."

Lampard: “We haven’t quite hit our stride”

Tammy Abraham snatched an undeserved draw for Chelsea in the final moments of Saturday’s game against Westbrom but Lampard believes there is room for improvement feeling unsatisfied with the draw.

A shambolic first 27 minutes of the game saw Chelsea collapsed to Westbrom who were leading 3-0 before Mason Mount, Hudson-odoi and Tammy Abraham helped the blues to salvage a point.

Speaking in his post-match conference, Lampard insists his team aren’t quite in their rhythm fitness-wise yet but believes after the October international break, he expects his team to hit their stride.

"We have two big games coming up against Tottenham and Crystal Palace. I expect to see an improvement in our performances," 

"But in terms of team fitness, it won't be until after the international break that I expect to see us up to our real level, especially in terms of on the ball, because we haven't had time to work on that yet."

"It is two points lost at the end of the day - and that's no disrespect to West Brom. 

You come here and you know the transition and any mistakes would be something they would jump on - that and set pieces. You can't legislate for the mistakes that there were today.

"It was mistakes, clear mistakes [that cost us]. You can have as many meetings as you want but with those mistakes you give yourself a mountain to climb. [We lacked] a bit if urgency in the team.

"We created two or three great chances in the first half. I felt we would create more, the only other problem at 3-0 was West Brom were going to protect their lead more. It is a big lesson for us. We will get a lot better, we're still finding our way with new players and a lack of pre-season. Today is part of the process of getting better.

"There is a lot we can keep getting better at. I'm not going to criticise every part of our game, I think they had three shots on target and got three goals. There were genuine mistakes. There was nothing tactically you can analyse again and again - there were just pure mistakes."

Abraham: “Lampard had to lift us up”

Chelsea were fortunate to come out with a 3-3 draw away at the Hawthorns on Saturday evening.

Westbrom lead the blues at the break courtesy of goals from Callum Robinson (2) and Bartley with Chelsea left shellshocked about what had happened to them.

Chelsea’s Tammy Abraham speaking to SkySports after the game, made known what Frank Lampard said to the players in the dressing room at halftime.

“We all went in and our heads were down and he had to lift us up”

"He said we didn't look like a team ready to go out and win and we needed to pick each other up in the second half.

"Thankfully Mason got the goal which meant we could believe. I knew we'd get chances but to come back from 3-0 is never easy. The boys deserve credit, they kept going."

Friday, September 25, 2020

AS Roma interested in Borja Mayoral

AS Roma are keen on adding extra options to their striking position and they have highlighted Real Madrid Striker Borja Mayoral as a potential signing; according to Corriere dello Sport

Juventus later signed Alvaro Morata which means they aren’t prioritizing a deal for Edin Dzeko.

The Giallorossi are now looking to sign Mayoral as a backup option and are even willing to part away with €10 million to bring him on the book.

Cavani offered one-year contract

Edinson Cavani has been offered a one-year-Contract from Atletico Madrid with an option to renew for another year; SOCCER PUNCH can confirm.

Atletico Madrid are not so keen on Diego Costa and are willing to allow him depart the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium with Cavani as his replacement 

Los Rojiblancos don’t have the wages to give Edinson Cavani which means Diego Costa has to be sold before a deal for can be finalized.

Atletico Madrid have also confirmed the signing of Luis Suarez on a two-year-Contract for a fee of €6m.

Mendy on joining Chelsea: “It is a big responsibility”

Edouard Mendy is delighted to be at Chelsea and he is honoured to have the opportunity to play for Chelsea (A club he followed keenly while he was young)

£22m was splashed on the 28-year-old Senegalese Goalkeeper from Rennes and he is now set to be the first African Goalkeeper to play for Chelsea.

Speaking to Chelsea’s official website, Mendy is glad to follow to footsteps of African greats like Micheal Essien and Didier Drogba in having don the colours of blue.

“Most of the biggest African talent has played for this team.

“Drogba, Essien, Eto’o, Mikel. When you see that, you want to continue it. Regarding the goalkeeper, I am the first, so it really makes me very proud, and it’s also a big responsibility.”

Mendy cannot wait to get started for Chelsea believing he is raring to go

 “When this story is discussed, then I realise the path I have been on in my career.

“It’s true that it’s incredible. People say hard work pays off, and it does. I have worked very hard; I haven’t taken anything for granted.

“I was at Marseille, and then Reims, and then Rennes, and now Chelsea. It’s been a constant progression, and now I am ready to continue on that upward path.”

Carlton Cole: “This is the year of judgement for Lampard”

“Lampard has to deliver now that he has all the tools for success”; according to a Former Blues Striker Carlton Cole.

The Former Manchester City Midfielder was hired in 2019 and oversaw his first campaign where the blues finished fourth in the premier league while also reaching the FA Cup finals.

The Barometer of Chelsea’s success in the 2019/2020 was deemed “satisfactory” due to a transfer embargo at that time and the inability to replace Star Forward Eden Hazard but Cole believes his former teammate will be judged properly at the end of this season.

“Lamps is a very good morale-boosting manager for his teams.

“I think he has a good support network around him obviously with Jody Morris, and his mate Joe Edwards as well. That will be important this year as he has had money to spend.

“This will be the year that he is judged. I know Frank said there was a lot of pressure on him last season, but there will be more now because he has spent money now which puts him in with all of the Premier League big boys in terms of managers who have invested in the team. I hope it goes well for him.”

Lampard on transfer rumours: “I can’t talk about these things”

Frank Lampard was asked to give an update on potential departures of some high profile names in his squad in today’s Pre-Match conference.

Rudiger has been linked to Paris Saint-German, Jorginho has been linked to Arsenal while Major Premier League clubs are believed to be circling on Ross Barkley and Ruben Loftus-cheek and not forgetting Callum Hudson-Odoi who is being linked with away to Bayern Munich.

However, The Blues Boss preferred to focus to his squad at the moment and didn’t offer to much insight on transfer  departures.

“I don't expect anything in the window, because they are our players and that's a fact,” 

“There are lots of rumours about those players and others too, so every player would always be a case-by-case situation, and one that would be a happy solution for the player, for myself and the club.”

When asked about Chelsea’s interest in Declan Rice, Lampard said: 

“Again, they are rumours. I can't talk about these things. When players are ours it's not my position to speculate on what may be, and the same on the other side from players from other clubs.

“We have a game against West Brom and the biggest thing for me is getting the players ready for that game. I honestly don't have answers to the speculation of ins and outs going forward.”

Lampard: “Pulisic and Ziyech close to being available”

Chelsea Manager Frank Lampard provided fitness updates of his earlier today in his pre-Westbrom press conference.

The 42-year-old confirmed that both Hakim Ziyech and Christian Pulisic are unavailable for the trip to the hawthorns but said they have started training with the group.

Lampard also reiterated that he won’t ask too much from Pulisic who has a track record of muscle injuries since the time he has signed for Chelsea.

"No, Christian isn't ready for the squad, nor is Hakim Ziyech, but they're both training with us now, which is good news," 


"We hope to have them with us in proper match contention over the next week or two."

"There's always a concern about a player's fitness when the history says there's been some injuries. Last season we did have them with Christian, I was questioned many times on him, when he did and didn't play," 

"Of course, when you look at a player with his recent record, you're trying to find the right balance of getting the best out of him, which we saw in big periods last year, and making sure you don't overcook him and leave him susceptible to injury, particularly with a player of his explosive pace and balance. It's a fine line. 

"We're working on that and Christian's also very open to that. He wants to play, he's so hungry to play and he's very nearly fit now, but it's certainly something we have to manage with him this season. 

"We've all seen the talent and it's something we want to get right. I'm not saying it's a fundamental, chronic issue because it's not, but we want to get as many minutes out of Christian – the really great Christian that we saw lots of last season – on the pitch."

Thiago Silva and Ben Chilwell are also in contention to start against Westbrom but Lampard insists both players have to be carefully managed during this period of fitness levels

"I believe they are fit enough to start, but I do also have to take into consideration the fact that we play another game with a pretty tight turnaround on Tuesday, then another on Sunday, and then the international players will maybe go and play three games for their country, so I'm managing that one," 

"Having come through that game the other day as they did, I think particularly Thiago did start that game and had 60 minutes in the bank, so that was good to see. 

"With Ben, I'll maybe be a little more cautious just to make sure, his injury's been a bit of a challenging one, so I'll make those calls. But they're in a good place at the moment."

Terry delighted with Traore impact

John Terry has praised the immediate impact of summer signing Betrand Traore who took just 14 minutes to score in his Aston Villa debut.

Bertrand Traore scored his first goal for Villa against bristol city in the Carabao Cup third round after being signed for £19m.

Terry who watched on in the Aston Villa technical area said the former Chelsea player has proven himself at Stamford Bridge and he has the hunger to be a successful player for the villians.

“Bertrand's come in tonight and put in a good performance for someone who hasn't played a lot - to come in and get the goal tops it off. He was excellent.

"I wouldn't say I pushed [for the transfer], I know my role at the football club. I advise and we want bigger and better players in the building. I've had previous with him and I gave a good character reference as well.

"He was someone at Chelsea who was very hungry. He had the desire to prove himself at the top and he went away and he's got that opportunity now at Aston Villa. Personally and professionally we're delighted to have him.

"He's proven himself at Chelsea, making an immediate impact at such a young age when he came in. He has everything: the pace, strength and the willingness to go and prove himself at the very top.

"He has that quality, pace to run in behind. He can isolate people in one-on-one situations. We have that over on the other side with Jack [Grealish].

"He can produce that and that can free Jack up as well, especially when we get that switch of play through quickly during games. He's got that potential to beat players, score amazing goals and, hopefully, we'll see a bit more of that.

"I said to him in the dressing room [his goal] was a cross but I'm going to give him the benefit of the doubt!"

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Liverpool “not keen” on Sarr again

According to talkSPORT, Liverpool have dropped interest in signing Ismaila Sarr from Watford FC.

The Reds have now completed the signing Diogo Jota from Wolverhampton Wanderers meaning there is no need to go after the Senegalese Forward.

No £78m Gimenez bid from Man City

Manchester City are believed to be “astonished” of reports reaching them that they have sent a bid of £78m to Atletico Madrid for Jose Maria Gimenez; SOCCER PUNCH has learnt.

The Defender tested positive for coronavirus on Monday and despite claims from the Club’s president that a bid has been sent to them, Manchester City have refuted those claims.

Aouar keen on Arsenal move

Houssem Aouar favours a move to the Emirates Stadium; according to The Independent .

However, the Lyon Star is taking his time to see if Arsenal will present a good-enough offer to Lyon that will enable him to make the move.

PSG “struggling” to agree deal for Alli

Paris Saint-Germain have been discouraged from completing a loan deal for Tottenham Hotspur Midfielder Dele Alli; according to the Telegraph.

Les Parisiens are finding it difficult in agreeing personal terms with Alli due to his wage demands.

Dele Alli was out of Tottenham’s Squad which faced Southampton last time out.

Arsenal keen on Jorginho

Arsenal are keen on Chelsea Midfielder Jorginho; according to a report from SkySports.

Arsenal are growing impatient concerning a deal for Atletico Madrid’s defensive midfielder Thomas Partey and are eyeing another option.

Sampdoria to sign Candreva

According to Calciomercato,  Antonio Candreva is close to departing the Guiseppe Meazza Stadium.

Sampdoria are close to completing a deal for the experienced winger with a €2m to be concluded in days to come.

Candreva will sign a new four-year contract will will keep him at Sampdoria beyond his mid-thirties.

DONE DEAL: Chelsea sign Edouard Mendy

Chelsea have today announced the signing of Edouard Mendy from Rennes for a fee of £22 million.

The 28-year-old Goalkeeper joins the blues on a five-year deal and will compete with the likes of Underfire Kepa Arrizabalaga and Willy Caballero for a place in the starting lineup.

On signing for Chelsea, Edouard Mendy said:

“I am so excited to be joining Chelsea. It’s a dream for me to be a part of this exciting squad and to work with Frank Lampard and all of his coaching staff,”

“I look forward to meeting my team-mates and can’t wait to get started.”

Chelsea Sporting Director also spoke about the new signing and praised Performance Adviser Petr Cech for his part in the conclusion of the deal

“As soon as Petr Cech and our technical team identified Edouard as the most suitable goalkeeper to complement our existing group, there was only one player we wanted to bring in,” 

“Edouard arrives following a season of real success with Rennes, he is ambitious for more, and we welcome him to our club.”

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Chelsea whip Barnsley for Six

                  CHELSEA 6-0 BARNSLEY
Chelsea were in action against Sky Bet Championship side Barnsley on Wednesday night.

Tammy Abraham opened the scoring with his first goal of the season in the 19th minute before Kai Havertz scored his first Chelsea goal nine minutes later courtesy of a Mason Mount Assist.

Ross Barkley made it three goals to the good three minutes after the restart after good work from Havertz in winning possession back in the final third.

Kai Havertz completed his Hattrick in phenomenal style lashing on to two brilliant passes from Tammy Abraham in the 55th and 65th minute.

Substitute Olivier Giroud rounded off the scoring after Chelsea debutant Ben Chilwell delivered in a brilliant cross to get his first Chelsea assist.

Chelsea bounced back to winning ways after losing to Liverpool last Sunday.

Barcelona close to €25m Dest agreement

FC Barcelona are close to finding an agreement in place to sign Sergino Dest from Ajax who will replace the already departed Nelson Semedo; SOCCER PUNCH  can confirm.

The United States International will cost La Blaugrana €25 Million with a further €5m in bonuses.

Fabrizio Romano reports that Barcelona have made a last bid of €25m for him and that Bayern Munich are in the race to sign him but Barcelona are firm favourites to sign him with a decision close to be made.

Lazio close to Hoedt loan deal

Southampton are set to sanction the loan move of Wesley Hoedt to Lazio; according to SkySports 

The Defender spent last season on loan at Royal Antwerp and would be keen to rejoin his former club Lazio.

Lazio are preparing to include a €4.6m clause to sign the 26-year-old permanently next summer.

Rudiger set for Chelsea exit

Chelsea Defender Antonio Ruediger is on his way out of Chelsea after not making the Squad for Wednesday’s night game against Barnsley; SOCCER PUNCH has learnt.

The German has slipped down the pecking order at Stamford Bridge with Fikayo Tomori now seemingly ahead of him for a starting berth.

Rudiger join Chelsea from AS Roma in 2017 and has had three seasons at Stamford Bridge.

Arias close to Leverkusen move

Santiago Arias is close to completing his move to Bayer Leverkusen with a Medical set to be completed for an initial loan move; according to reports from Marca.

The Fullback will join Leverkusen on loan with an option for a permanent purchase of €9m.

Burnley in talks for Harry Wilson

Burnley have opened talks with Liverpool concerning 23-year-old Harry Wilson; SOCCER PUNCH has learnt.

The Former Liverpool youngster spent last season on loan at Bournemouth who couldn’t beat the drop.

Harry Wilson has only made one senior appearance for Liverpool.

Werner doubted Chelsea move

Timo Werner has admitted that he had second thoughts about joining the blues this summer after seeing the Bavarians thrash Chelsea 7-1 on aggregate.

Chelsea lost the first leg to Bayern Munich 3-0 before playing a 4-1 scoreline at the Allianz Arena in early August which created some doubts in Werner’s mind.

Fortunately, The German Striker changed his mind after seeing more improvement from the blues in terms of how they finished the season.

“I would be lying if I said it wasn't like that. 

"The 3-0 home defeat of Chelsea in the first leg against Bayern hadn't exactly spoken in favour of going to London.

"I have to say that openly, because with Leipzig we always played very good and close games against Bayern." 

Silva wants Chelsea stay beyond 2021

Chelsea Defender Thiago Silva is looking to stay in England beyond 2021 speaking to the media yesterday in a press conference.

The Former PSG star signed a one year deal upon signing from Les Parisiens with an option of another year and Silva wants to do enough to get an extension to his Chelsea stay.

“I think when you get to a certain age, the tendency is that you sign this type of contract and at times there are maybe doubts and, like with me and the expectations of Chelsea, that is to be expected,” 

“But I have no doubt that I will give everything, do my best and will contribute. I am prepared to work really hard in everything I do. I love football, I love preparation. It’s not a case of preparing on Friday for Saturday - my type of preparation goes way back.

“I’m totally relaxed about the contract and whether Chelsea will want to renew it or not, I don’t know. If I haven’t met expectations or contributed then we’ll sit down and talk about that. But I’m not worried at all.

“I will do my best possible and really contribute to this team, this new project. I’ve accepted this new challenge, it’s going to be really good for me. Everyone knows that my ambition is to play in the World Cup in two years’ time when I’ll be 38. That’s a great responsibility.”

Monday, September 21, 2020

Liverpool and Real Madrid in for Mbappe

Real Madrid and Liverpool looks set to be in the race for the signature of Kylian Mbappe in 2020; according to l’Equipe.

The World Cup Winner has already told PSG of his intentions to leave next summer and he looks set to have the los blancos and the reds hanging close over his neck.

Both Clubs have spoken to Paris Saint-Germain regarding a deal in the future.

Riqui Puig doesn’t want to leave Barcelona.

Barcelona’s Young Sensation Riqui Puig is refusing to leave the Camp Nou; according to Marca.

Puig believes he can fit in at Barcelona despite reports he has been told he could leave this week. 

The Youngster further stated his intentions of not wanting to leave by going to the Barcelona training ground with his Father.

Atletico must sell inorder to get Torreira

Atletico Madrid must sell players out of the club if they wish to sign Lucas Torreira  this Summer; according to Marca

Los Rojiblancos are in serious financial problems due to the consequences of the pandemic just like heavyweights Barcelona and Real Madrid.

Thiago Silva aiming to be at another World Cup

Thiago Silva is aiming to be at another world cup in the next two years in 2022 despite his career coming towards an end.

The Brazilian Centre-half enjoyed a trophy-laden spell with Paris Saint-Germain before making a switch to London this summer to join Chelsea on a free transfer.

Silva speaking in an interview on the Chelsea website, he expressed his satisfaction of joining Chelsea and a new project and hopes to have a special time at Stamford Bridge.

"What motivates me, day by day, is the hunger to win. To win everything within my reach," 

"Coming to the Premier League, my main goal is to win the league title and I’m certain that we’ll be fighting for that every step of the way. The team is really strong, we’ve got a great coach and I’ve come here to contribute in whatever way I can to ensure that we get as close as possible to achieving those aims.

"That’s what motivates me: stepping out onto the pitch, and then winning, winning, and winning some more. I don’t think about anything else.

"As I’ve said before, the prospect of playing at the next World Cup is another thing that really drives me. I’ll be more or less 38 years old by the time of the next World Cup and I’m hugely motivated to be in good shape for it.

"The work that I’m putting in to make this a reality already started a while back and now Chelsea have given me a great opportunity to continue playing at the highest level.

"What Chelsea represents to me is a source of great happiness and motivation to be a part of a new project, a new family and I hope that this will be a very special year together."

Mount defends Kepa: “We all make mistakes”

Mason Mount is fully behind his teammate Kepa Arrizabalaga after he played a part in their loss to Liverpool on Sunday.

The Spanish International was guilty of presenting a goalmouth opportunity for Mane after seeing his pass intercepted by the Senegalese leading to the Reds second goal but Mount is adamant that mistakes are part of life.

"We know that Kepa is an experienced goalkeeper, he will look at it and he knows where he needs to look at it and improve but we are all going to be behind him," 

“We all make mistakes, I make mistakes, I give the ball away but it’s just in their half and I can give the ball away and it’s different when it’s the back four, but as I said, we are all behind him, we all support him and it doesn’t matter because now we need to look towards the next game now."

Mount also admitted that the expectations have changed for Chelsea this season on the back of a summer spending spree.

“The game against Liverpool could have been different but it is what is. We look at the game and we know where we can improve," 

“We have definitely got better expectations than last season. We know we can do very well, we’ve got a very good team, but probably it takes some time to bond and to click together.

“We’ve got quite a few new players coming in and, as I said, it takes time sometimes to gel and we know it’s going to take a couple of games to understand each other and understand the way other people play.

“When we get our full rhythm, I think we’ll be firing and we’ll be scoring goals and hopefully get as many three points as we can. For me, if I look at the team we want to do better. We don’t want to accept fourth place; we want to push to the top.

"I think we can do that with the team that we’ve got, as I said. We just need to keep getting better and better and hopefully, we can do that.”

Cole: “We have to wait for them to gel”

Ex-Chelsea Left-back Ashley Cole believes Chelsea’s new signings need time to gel before a proper assessment is meted out on them following the loss to Liverpool.

The Blues have splashed the money bringing in nothing less than six players with Edouard Mendy expected to complete his signing soon.

Timo Werner and Kai Havertz have been the only newbies who have played since the start of the season and Cole believes time will be needed for the other signings to fully integrate into the signing bar Ben Chilwell.

 “How much quality they have there is frightening and exciting at the same time.

“Yes, we’ve added loads of quality into the team. With Thiago Silva, we’ve added experience as well.

“We’re going to have to be patient at times to wait for them to gel. It’s definitely looking way more exciting than it was towards the late stage of last season.”

Cole is also unfazed that Havertz has failed to impress in his first two games for Chelsea.

“He’s a very, very high quality player.

“It was his first game against Brighton where he had just two days of training with the team, so it’s tough.

“He’s just finding his feet, getting into the team, understanding the way Frank wants to play, but we’re definitely going to see great things from this guy because he’s such a great talent.”

“He doesn’t feel football, he doesn’t even live football”

Former Chelsea Defender Frank Leboeuf has slammed Kepa Arrizabalaga after the Spaniard made another costly earlier in last sunday’s loss to Liverpool.

The 25-year-old Goalkeeper lost possession in his own penalty area to Mane who had a simple task of slotting the ball into an empty net. The Senegalese also beat him with an header for the first goal from just few yards out.

Frank Lampard admitted after the game that Kepa Arrizabalaga needs to be treated carefully and Leboeuf echoes his thoughts saying time is running out for the £71m man.

“He cannot play, his head is on another planet.

"He doesn’t feel football, he doesn’t even live football, he’s just wondering if he is still a goalkeeper. He shouldn’t play, he should see a shrink.

“It’s maybe the first mistake from Frank to keep putting Kepa in goal. The guy has lost his confidence completely.

“It reminds me of Fernando Torres. But when you’re a striker, you miss a chance and they give him another game. But with a keeper you make a mistake and you concede a goal.

“Comparing to Kepa, Mendy is much better than that and has had a very good season at Rennes and much better than Kepa.

"For that money, Mendy is a very good keeper, he’s much taller, very agile and better than Kepa at the moment.”