Reuters Soccer Blog
World Soccer views and news
The Portuguese, who turned 48 on Wednesday, has been pressing for a centre-forward since the start of the season when Real set out with Gonzalo Higuain and Karim Benzema as their two recognized frontmen.
A long-term injury to Higuain and Benzema´s failure to impress saw Mourinho up the ante and the club compromised by going for a loan signing.
It is an unusual move for Real Madrid and perhaps reflects some of the tensions at play between Mourinho and president Florentino Perez´s trusted number two, director general Jorge Valdano.
Jose Mourinho’s constant pressuring of Real Madrid for another striker has finally paid off, with director general Jorge Valdano saying they were in the market for a number nine.
In the past, many top clubs would have been worried that the world’s richest club by income according to the Deloitte’s Football Money League, would be turning the heads of their prize assets.
Sports professionals are forever banging on about “taking the positives” from setbacks but for everyone connected with City, their performance and the whole occasion on Sunday showed that they really will be a force to be reckoned with over the next few months and years.
Our leader, Paul Radford, managed an unhappy three points this week … and look, who’s that chap who has sneaked through to replace him at the top? That was not the most impressive display of the week, however … for that look at one Julien Pretot, our new signing from the Paris bureau who leapt in with a 14 in his first week!
Many Arsenal supporters spent half of last season, and most of Saturday’s match, screaming abuse at Emmanuel Adebayor. On Saturday, he scored and dared to run the length of the pitch to celebrate in front of them.
“Outrageous” and “shocking” screamed just about everyone. Obviously he should take the blame for the visiting fans’ subsequent eruption of hatred and vitriol. It was clearly his fault that some of them threw missiles on to the pitch and he is obviously culpable for the City steward being knocked unconscious in the melee.
Liverpool’s Rafa Benitez may feel he got a good price for Xabi Alonso but he is in no danger of dislodging Arsene Wenger as the Premier League manager with the Midas touch.
Wenger has received criticism of late for not ‘spending big’ on replacements for departing first-teamers. He should be receiving credit for earning a huge pile of cash for players no longer in his plans. Does anyone in football generate as much money from transfers as Wenger?
Fuelled by millions of petro-dollars from the apparently bottomless pockets of their Abu Dhabi owners Manchester City have spent the summer accumulating what is beginning to look, on paper anyway, a squad that will challenge for the title.
Significantly, the players bought by manager Mark Hughes are tried and tested in the Premier League which augurs wells for City’s chances of shaking up the established pecking order in English football.
Manchester City are finally shopping at the luxury end of the market, as befits their status as the richest of the rich, and as a result the fans can start to get excited about the new season.
Back in January I blogged about the depressingly familiar rollcall of mediocre players being linked with City: the likes of Scott Parker, Roque Santa Cruz, Craig Bellamy and Matthew Upson.