Ahead of England’s opening match at the World Cup 2014, a lot of emphasis has been put on stopping Italy’s playmaker Andrea Pirlo. The 34-year-old has starting point of many attacks over the years. He continues to be the heartbeat of the team. In the past, teams that have prevented Pirlo from play his natural game have often gained a huge advantage. This was the case with Manchester United against AC Milan several years ago. As a result, it has been heavily speculated that England manager Roy Hodgson will come out with a unique plan in order to stop Pirlo.
The future of England captain Steven Gerrard has been heavily speculated in the last few months. Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has said that Gerrard should consider retiring from international duty after the World Cup 2014. The 34-year-old midfielder is approaching the end of his career, but in order to prolong his career with Liverpool, he may have to retire from England duty. Despite this, national team manager Roy Hodgson says that he is still counting on Gerrard being the captain beyond the World Cup.
England national team boss Roy Hodgson has sent out his congratulations to his Dutch counterpart Louis van Gaal, who has been named as the next manager of Manchester United. The club have been conducting discussions with the 62-year-old ever since they parted company with David Moyes while some even have suggested that United have been talking with van Gaal even before Moyes was sacked. Either way, he will now lead the club into the new season hoping to be much more successful than his predecessor. He has already given out the firm objective of winning the title next campaign.
Liverpool defender Glen Johnson has stated that he feels that his Liverpool teammate Raheem Sterling should be in the England squad for the World Cup 2014. Sterling made his breakthrough with Liverpool last season, but this campaign he has been even better.
His form has been one of the major reasons behind Liverpool challenging for the title with less than six matches remaining. Sterling used to be a player who relied heavily upon his pace, but Brendan Rodgers has transformed him into a player with an all-round capability.
Southampton defender Luke Shaw recently earned his first call-up for the England national side, as they played in a friendly against Denmark at the Wembley. The 18-year-old has impressed heavily with the Premier league outfit over the last few months.
After failing to sign a number of their priority players in the past transfer window, Arsenal is believed to be preparing to make a bid for the Schalke duo of Julian Draxler and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar as the Premier League club are hoping to strengthen their squad in the summer when the transfer window opens once more.
We’re less than 100 days away from the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. The World Cup is a momentous event; in 2010 it reached 3.2 billion people, or 46.4% of the world’s population, this year’s promises to be bigger than ever.
So can host’s Brazil cap off what will be a fantastic tournament with victory?
The Brazil side have been instilled as favourites by 32 Red Casino as well as many others bookmakers. There are numerous reasons why the bookies believe it will be Brazil lifting the trophy in July, but perhaps the most important factor is home support.
Chelsea defender Ryan Bertrand, who recently completed the season long loan deal to Aston Villa, says that he wants to be part of the England squad for the World Cup 2014. Bertrand is one of the few players to make the grade from Chelsea, but he did not feature a lot of times under new manager Jose Mourinho.
The youngster was a surprise inclusion into the starting line-up for Champions league final against Bayern Munich a few years ago. Last season, he featured regularly under the management of both Roberto di Matteo and Rafa Benitez.
Keith Downing and West Bromwich Albion have a huge list of tasks left to do as the transfer window has re-opened but the Premier League club still have not found their ideal coach as Steve Clarke was sacked around 1 month ago and now Downing is the man in charge of the club until they can find someone else.
Osasuna’s Jose Luis Mendilibar is a top candidate on being the new coach of West Bromwich Albion as he is being linked strongly with the job but other names are emerging such as Pepe Mel and Malky Mackay but the club is taking the necessary time before making a conclusion.
Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers says he has no doubts that Lucas Leiva and Joe Allen can fill the void left by skipper Steven Gerrard’s hamstring injury.
Gerrard limped off during the second half of Saturday’s 4-1 win over West Ham and is now expected to miss most of the busy festive period, while Jordan Henderson is also set for a spell on the sidelines with an ankle problem.