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Leicester City appear to be going through their first real test of poor form this campaign. The team has scored only two goals in the last four matches and it seems that they are struggling with the increased spotlight on striker Leonardo Ulloa. The striker was signed in the summer for £ 8 million and he has already started showing signs of being a Premier League top marksman. Despite playing for a team that was expected to struggle in the bottom half of the table, Ulloa has already scored five goals. This league tally is better than the likes of Wayne Rooney have achieved this campaign.
Nigel Pearson accepts that there will be much more focus on Ulloa, as teams try to stop him from scoring. However, he expects the quality of the South American to shine through. Pearson is also aware that the club will not be putting their entire focus on Ulloa further goals. He says that the team will have to share the burden of scoring goals over the course of the campaign since every striker will go through a patch where they find it difficult to score goals. This weekend, Leicester take on Swansea away from home. This is a match where they will definitely look to take at least point.
“I’ve not noticed any shift; he’s a quiet sort of man and a likeable guy and his outlook hasn’t changed. He certainly hasn’t had any extra pressure put on him from within. My view on strikers is goals are what they are about but the way we play, we need forward-thinking players who also understand how the team functions. Leo has settled in very well and has had an outstanding start in terms of goal return. His all-round play has been excellent,” said the Leicester City boss.
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Manchester City have been giving a number of opportunities to Stevan Jovetic this season, which is surprising considering that the former Fiorentina forward was largely a substitute throughout last campaign. Despite brought in for around £ 22 million last summer, he featured in only 16 matches throughout the campaign. Even though his record of six goals in these matches bodes well, Jovetic often found himself on the bench during the presence of Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko, and Alvaro Negredo. This campaign, however, Jovetic has been a key man for the Premier League champions.
He has featured in two out of the three league matches played by City, while more importantly, he has two goals to his name. The injury concerns surrounding Sergio Aguero have meant that manager Manuel Pellegrini does not have many options up front. On transfer deadline day, the club decided to allow Alvaro Negredo to join Valencia on a season-long loan deal which is set to be made permanent. This leaves Pellegrini with three main strikers in his squad with one of them being Jovetic. The 24-year-old says that he is happy with the regular game think he has been getting this season, which shows that Pellegrini has a lot of faith in him.
“Last season I had so many problems. I was late into preparation and I just could not catch my teammates. And then there were all those injuries. Just as I recovered I would get hurt again. But I guess there were things that I was doing right, because the club wanted me to stay. They believed in me – president, manager, teammates. And it means a lot. They told me they want me to stay for which I’m very grateful. I know what I can do and how much I can give my club,” said Jovetic.
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Now that the dust has settled on the summer transfer window, the activity of one Premier League club remains in the spotlight. After a winless start to the campaign – including draws at Sunderland and Burnley and a shock home defeat to Swansea City – it was inevitable that Manchester United would move Heaven and Earth to turn their season around, but the sheer size of their outlay in the transfer window will surely have surpassed the expectations of even their most optimistic of fans.
Now, with some of the finest talent in world football at his disposal, the key question for Old Trafford manager Louis Van Gaal is how can he possibly fit everyone in…..and has he gone too far in his recruitment? Continue reading ‘LVG Selection Headachergb’
Chelsea’s swift transfer business, conducted early in the summer window, coupled with their perfect start to the new campaign, has given the impression of a settled club ready to regain their Premier League crown this season.
While Manchester United and Arsenal raced around on transfer deadline day looking for strikers to complete their squads, Chelsea were concentrating on trimming theirs, sending out some promising youngsters and first-team fringe players on loan.
The Blues have received a bit of criticism for allowing some talented youngsters to leave temporarily but, overall, it is safe to say that this transfer window will be viewed as a success at Stamford Bridge. Continue reading ‘Robust Chelsea best-placed to deliver titlergb’
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Everton have been splashing the cash in this transfer window. Just days after completing the £ 28 million club record signing of Romelu Lukaku, Roberto Martinez has been Bosnian international Muhamed Besic come to the club as well. Besic comes from the back of an impressive World Cup 2014 with the Bosnian national team despite the fact that they failed to qualify for the knockout stages. Besic came up against the likes of Messi and Angel di Maria at the World Cup. He performed exceptionally well against these two superstars.
Besic spoke about the joy of keeping Lionel Messi and Angel di Maria quiet and he says that he is ready to apply the skills in the Premier league as well. Many expected Besic to take a while to settle, but the 21-year-old has been looking extremely promising in the pre-season matches. This has led to price from manager Martinez, who says that the £ 4 million signing is the complete footballer he has seen in a long time. Martinez says that the World Cup provided a lot of insight into the player and it seems that he was correct in making the judgement.
Everton finished fifth in the league last season and they are expected to put together a major challenge for a top four place.
“For a player to feel at home so quickly is incredible. It shows you his confidence in himself, his quality and the understanding of the players around him. He has looked like a player who had been at Everton for three years. That’s what I saw at the World Cup – someone who’s not fazed by anything. It doesn’t matter if he needs to man-mark Lionel Messi or he needs to get on the ball and make you play,” said Martinez after the 1-1 draw with Porto.