Reuters Soccer Blog

World Soccer views and news

Clever banners can’t hide Milan’s derby pain

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Nowhere in the world can match the San Siro for the array of banners unfurled by fans.

Before kick off in Sunday’s derby, the Inter and Milan ends were transformed into huge colourful patchworks and throughout the game various slogans were unveiled, some funny, some rude and some downright mysterious.

“How can you represent Milan when your team has no Italian players?” read one Milan banner (despite the fact that Inter’s teenaged left back Davide Santon is Italian).

The Milan fans in the ‘Curva Sud’ were so wrapped up in unfurling their masterpieces that many of them failed to notice that Adriano used a arm to score Inter’s first before the Serie A leaders went on to win 2-1 and increase their advantage over their city rivals to 11 points.

Thrifty Chelsea search through Golden Bin for Quaresma

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Since Roman Abramovich arrived with his millions from Russia, Chelsea have been used to shopping in the transfer market’s version of Harrods for glitzy new players.

Monday’s deadline day snaffling of Ricardo Quaresma, a player recently voted the worst performer in Serie A, suggests Chelsea are suddenly hunting in the thrift stores with the rest of the struggling population, self-consciously sifting through the bargain bucket.

The sad case of Patrick Vieira

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Portsmouth are interested in bringing Inter Milan’s Patrick Vieira back to England.

The only problem is that the former Arsenal man is injured…again. 

I’ve been the Reuters sports correspondent in Milan for nearly two years and I have interviewed Vieira more times than I have seen him play live.

Tevez should stay in England, whatever Diego says

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Diego Maradona has advised Manchester United and Argentina forward Carlos Tevez to join Inter Milan.

Then again he also thinks Atletico Madrid striker and compatriot Sergio Aguero should do the same. Who’ll be next? Barca’s Lionel Messi, another Argentine?

Champions League draw – your views

Jose Mourinho will clash with old foe Alex Ferguson in the Champions League last 16 with holders Manchester United playing Inter Milan.

It is England v Italy twice more with Juventus coach Claudio Ranieri facing former club Chelsea while Arsenal and Roma, two teams who love to play the beautiful game, also meet.

Vlog in the lift – Can Chelsea afford to lose Drogba?

Didier Drogba reminded Chelsea fans of his importance to their cause with a match-winning performance against Cluj in the Champions League this week, but recent reports have suggested that the controversial striker may be on his way to Inter Milan to link up with former manager Jose Mourinho.

Can Chelsea afford to let him go? Click on the video above to see Vlogonthepitch regulars Owen Wyatt and Jon Bramley have an elevated discussion. Let us know your views.

Will predictable Champions League have new winner?

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The 16 teams that reached the Champions League first knockout round were again the usual suspects expected to go through. The group stage of Europe’s premier club competition unfolded rather predictably after a few early shocks.

Ten of the teams qualified for the same stage last season while the other six include twice winners Juventus, who returned with a roar after a two-year absence, as well as former finalists Panathinaikos and Atletico Madrid.

Mourinho mind games may backfire in Champions League

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Although Inter coach Jose Mourinho believes a tough draw in the Champions League last 16 will shock his side out of their European malaise, the damage may already have been done.

The Serie A champions have remained true to Italian form by limping through the group stages, losing twice, drawing twice and winning convincingly only once.

Adriano ‘the animal’ is still to find his bite

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Adriano is surely one of the most frustrating players in the world.

The Brazilian has all the assets needed to be one of the very best strikers — power, pace and guile — yet he has wasted several opportunities to show he can be consistently good.

Indiscipline is part of his problem. Inter Milan coach Jose Mourinho left him out for five games after he ignored his orders in a league match, stayed out at a night club and turned up late for training.

Mourinho v Ranieri is a veritable grudge match

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It’s hard to think of two coaches in the world with such an apparent dislike of one another as Inter’s Jose Mourinho and Juve’s Claudio Ranieri.

Even Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger have got on better of late and the only coach to have real gripes with new Argentina boss Diego Maradona is Scotland no. 2 Terry Butcher.

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