Monday, April 27, 2015

Professional Football Association Awards for 2015




The results of the 42nd PFA Awards held at the Grosvenor House in London on Sunday 26th April 2015:

Team Awards:

Premier League Team of the Year 2015:

Goalkeeper:
David De Gea - Manchester United

Defence:
Gary Cahill - Chelsea
John Terry - Chelsea
Ryan Bertrand - Southampton
Branislav Ivanovic - Chelsea

Midfield:
Nemanja Matic - Chelsea
Philippe Coutinho - Liverpool (right)
Alexis Sanchez - Arsenal
Eden Hazard - Chelsea

Forwards:
Diego Costa - Chelsea
Harry Kane - Tottenham

Championship Team of the Year 2015:

Goalkeeper:
Keiren Westwood - Sheffield Wed

Defence:
Richard Keogh - Derby
Russell Martin - Norwich
George Friend - Middlesbrough
Simon Francis - Bournemouth

Midfield:
Grant Leadbitter - Middlesbrough
Matt Ritchie - Bournemouth (right)
Alex Pritchard - Brentford
Bakary Sako - Wolves

Forwards:
Daryl Murphy - Ipswich
Troy Deeney - Watford

League One Team of the Year 2015:

Goalkeeper:
Frank Fielding - Bristol City


Defence:
Tom Clarke - Preston
Aden Flint - Bristol City
Nathan Byrne - Swindon
Joe Bryan - Bristol City

Midfield:
Massimo Luongo - Swindon
Luke Freeman - Bristol City
Dele Alli - MK Dons (right)
Korey Smith - Bristol City

Forwards:
Joel Garner - Preston
Eoin Doyle - Chesterfield

League Two Team of the Year 2015:



Goalkeeper:
Daniel Bentley - Southend

Defence:
Conor Goldson - Shrewsbury
Steve McNulty - Luton
Ben Coker - Southend
Phil Edwards - Burton

Midfield:
Danny Mayor - Bury
Jed Wallace - Portsmouth (right)
Danny Mayor - Bury
Matt Grimes - Exeter

Forwards:
Ryan Woods - Shrewsbury
Matt Tubbs - Portsmouth


Women's Soccer League Team of the Year 2015:

Goalkeeper:
Carly Telford - Notts County

Defence:
Casey Stoney - Arsenal
Rachel Corsie - Notts County
Emma Mitchell - Arsenal
Lucy Bronze - Liverpool (right)

Midfield:
Jill Scott - Manchester City
Karen Carney - Birmingham
Ji So-Yun - Chelsea
Josanne Potter - Birmingham

Forwards:
Nikita Parris - Everton
Eniola Aluko - Chelsea


Individual Awards:

Men's PFA Players' Player of the Year - Eden Hazard (Chelsea)

Men's PFA Young Player of the Year - Harry Kane (Tottenham)

Women's PFA Players' Player of the Year - Ji So-Yun (Chelsea)

PFA Women's Young Player of the Year - Leah Williamson (Arsenal)

PFA Merit award - Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard



Friday, April 17, 2015

All the latest football news & transfer gossip across Europe!



Here is all today's latest football news and transfer gossip with Manchester United, Louis van Gaal, Chelsea, Alan Pardew, Barcelona, PSG, John Carver, Radamel Falcao, Manchester City, Real Madrid, Daniel Sturridge, Brendan Rodgers, Newcastle, PSV, Yaya Toure, Arsenal, Valencia, Liverpool, Gary Monk, Crystal Palace, Lyon, Paul Lambert, Roma, QPR, Inter Milan and Southampton all in the news! 

Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley wants to strengthen his squad by signing Queens Park Rangers striker Charlie Austin, 25. Ashley hopes the move for Austin will show the club's ambition and encourage Derby manager Steve McClaren to take charge. Crystal Palace and Southampton are also watching the striker closely - Daily Mirror

Swansea City manager Garry Monk has distanced himself from reports linking him to West Ham. Monk has been touted as a potential successor to current Hammers boss Sam Allardyce, whose contract expires at the end of the season - BBC Sport

Edinson Cavani has revealed that he does not want to leave Paris Saint-Germain. Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester United have been linked with moves for the 28-year-old, but he is keen to stay in the French capital - Daily Star

Atletico Madrid and France international forward Antoine Griezmann, 24, is a transfer target for Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola - Bild (German tabloid newspaper)

Premier League clubs and players have received more than 130,000 abusive posts on social media this season, according to a study by anti-discrimination group Kick It Out.
The research found Chelsea were the most targeted club, while Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli suffered more abuse than any other player - BBC Sport

Alan Pardew has put a £20m price tag on Yannick Bolasie and says Crystal Palace will be buying, not selling this summer - skysports.com

Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal has been told to send Radamel Falcao back to AS Monaco and spend the money on a striker who suits his system - Daily Express

Valencia's planned move for 29-year-old AS Monaco striker Radamel Falcao, who is on loan at Manchester United, looks set to be scuppered because the Spanish club must complete a permanent deal for Manchester City forward Alvaro Negredo - Daily Telegraph

Barcelona attacker Pedro wants to sign for Inter Milan – news which will disappoint Liverpool, Arsenal and Manchester United. - Daily Express

Manchester City are willing to listen to offers for Yaya Toure this summer, but the midfielder is determined to stay at the club - Daily Mail

Daniel Sturridge is a major injury doubt for Liverpool's FA Cup semi-final clash with Aston Villa on Sunday - Daily Star

Southampton boss Ronald Koeman has told Manchester United target Nathaniel Clyne that it's time to make his mind up - Daily Star

Roberto Martinez is already planning Everton's summer transfer activity amid reports of a move for Tom Cleverley. Cleverley on loan at Aston Villa played under Martinez at Wigan and will be a free agent when his Manchester United contract is up in the close-season - skysports.com

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has warned forward Raheem Sterling, 20, and winger Jordon Ibe, 19, of the conduct he expects after the pair were pictured with a shisha pipe - The Sun and The Guardian

Oscar says he has no plans to leave Chelsea amid reports he could be sold at the end of the season. The Brazil international has started 24 of Chelsea's 32 Premier League games this season, but has been substituted in 18 of them. A newspaper report on Thursday claimed Jose Mourinho is ready to listen to offers for the midfielder, who cost £25m when he was bought from Inter in the summer of 2012 - skysports.com

Real Madrid's 16-year-old attacking midfielder Martin Ødegaard could be loaned to Villarreal The Norway international only joined the Galácticos from Strømsgodset in January of this year - fichajes.net (Spanish based football website)

Newcastle United manager John Carver will "review" the club's captaincy this summer and could take the armband away from defender Fabricio Coloccini, 33, to give it to 25-year-old right-back Daryl Janmaat. Daily Mail and The Guardian

Manchester United and Liverpool have revived their interest in AS Roma midfielder Miralem Pjanic, with the 25-year-old set to have talks with his employers about his future next week - Metro and Daily Mirror

Former Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert could be a target for Sunderland and Fulham if he does not return to former club Borussia Dortmund - The Sun

Carl Jenkinson says he is unsure whether he will remain with West Ham next season or return to Arsenal - skysports.com and Sport magazine

PSV Eindhoven skipper Georginio Wijnaldum has ambitions of securing a move to a top European side - and insists the Premier League is an option. The attacking midfielder who has been linked with Manchester United, Arsenal and Newcastle in recent months only signed a new four-year contract last August, but says he is open to leaving the Dutch club - skysports.com

The agent of Netherlands international Marco van Ginkel, 22, says the midfielder wants to return from his loan at AC Milan to play for Chelsea next season - Daily Express and skysports.com

Wojciech Szczesny could be Arsenal's Wembley FA Cup hero - and still be shown the door at the end of the season - Daily Mirror

Striker Alexandre Lacazette, 23, a transfer target for Arsenal, Manchester United, and Newcastle has confirmed he wants to sign a new contract with Olympique Lyonnais - Daily Star

Despite a meeting today with the agent of Palermo striker Paulo Dybala, Atletico Madrid say they are not interested in signing the Argentinian born striker - transfermarketweb.com

Stoke City want Barcelona's teenage winger Moha El Ouriachi - Daily Mirror

Thursday, April 09, 2015

The Greatest Loan Deals in Premier League History


Loan signings are rife in football these days!

A loan deal can be a fantastic temporary solution to a club's problems - bringing in that special player for a season or even half a season, in an effort to help a Club realise its trophy ambitions, save a club from relegation, or simply to replace an injured player.

Over the years there have been some important loan signings in the Premier League.


Here are in my eyes some of the best loan signings in recent memory!


Jermain Defoe - West Ham to Bournemouth (2000/01)

West Ham United manager at the time, Harry Redknapp, sent 18-year-old Beckton-born Jermain Defoe to then Second Division club AFC Bournemouth to gain some regular first-team football at the start of the century. He scored an impressive 18 goals in 29 games, including a record-equalling ten goals in successive games to equal John Aldridge’s and Clarrie Jordan’s post-war record, as well as finding the net on both his FA Cup and Football League Trophy debuts for the Cherries.

These exploits propelled the youngster into the public eye, and many thought he could be the next Michael Owen. While he did not quite reach those dizzy heights, Defoe, now 32, has enjoyed a terrific career with West Ham, Portsmouth, Tottenham, Toronto FC, current club Sunderland and England, scoring over 200 goals to date.


Romelu Lukaku – Chelsea to West Brom (2012/13) and Chelsea to Everton (2013/14)

The Belgium international was loaned out to West Brom on 10 August 2012 on a season-long loan deal, and the 19 year-old striker proved to be a terrific coup for The Baggies. He scored 17 goals in 38 appearances, in all competitions, and was a major reason for West Brom’s excellent Premier League campaign.

Despite being loaned out by the club, Lukaku outscored all of his Chelsea teammates in the Premier League that season, being the sixth-highest goal scorer of the 2012–13 season with 17 goals.

On the final day of the summer 2013 transfer window, he joined Everton on a season-long loan. The striker made his debut for the Toffees away to West Ham on 21 September 2013, scoring the winning goal in a 3–2 victory for Everton. Lukaku went on to find the net 15 times in 31 league games to help Everton to fifth place with a club record of 72 Premier League points.

On 30 July 2014, Everton announced that Lukaku had signed a five-year deal with the club, for a record fee of £28 million.


Kevin Campbell - Tranzbonspor to Everton (1999)

Campbell arrived at Goodison Park in March 1999 from Turkish side Tranzbonspor, with Everton languishing in the relegation zone.

Campbell made an instant impact at Goodison Park, in his two month spell with the Merseyside club he became the club’s top scorer that season with nine goals in only eight games as Walter Smith’s side avoided the drop.

Campbell also became the first-ever loanee in Premier League history to be awarded the 'Player of the Month' award after scoring six times in five matches in April 1999.

Campbell's move to Everton was made permanent in the summer of 1999 for a fee of £3million. Campbell went on to play for six more seasons in Merseyside, but nothing emulates his loan spell with the club in 1999.


Henrik Larsson - Helsingborg IF to Manchester United (2007)

Having re-joined his hometown club Helsingborg IF, following a successful spell at Barcelona, the Sweden and Celtic legend was 35 when he made the shock move to Old Trafford. Larsson was signed by Sir Alex Ferguson on loan from 1 January until 12 March 2007, coinciding with the Swedish League's off season.

The former Celtic frontman scored for the Red Devils on his debut against Aston Villa in the FA Cup third round, before his strike against Lille in the Champions League last-16 propelled United toward the semi-finals of Europe’s premier club competition.

In total, the Swede made 13 appearances, scoring three goals, as United finished the season with their first Premier League crown for four years.

The legendary striker then declined Ferguson's offer of an extended deal, in order to return to his native Sweden.


Daniel Sturridge - Chelsea to Bolton Wanderers (2011)

Sturridge moved to Bolton on a six-month loan deal on 31 January 2011 after struggling to win a starting berth up front at Stamford Bridge under boss Carlo Ancelotti.

The striker made an immediate impact by coming off the bench to score an injury-time winner on his debut against Wolves, the first of four goals in his first four games for the club. He followed this with another goal in the defeat to Tottenham Hotspur the following weekend, in which he made his first start, before scoring his third goal in three games in a 2–0 victory over Everton. When Sturridge scored the equaliser against Newcastle in his fourth game, he became only the sixth player to score in his first four games for a club in Premier League history.

Sturridge continued to make an impact at Bolton and finished his loan spell with an impressive eight strikes to his name in just 12 Premier League matches.

On his return to Chelsea he was to be met by a new Chelsea manager - André Villas-Boas.


Christophe Dugarry - Bordeaux to Birmingham City (2003)

The World Cup-winning Frenchman is thought of as a true Birmingham legend after his spell at the club over a decade ago. Much like Eric Cantona, Christophe Dugarry had an arrogance and aura about him which he backed up on the pitch.

Dugarry, the former AC Milan and Barcelona striker signed for Birmingham on a six-month loan deal from French Ligue 1 side Bordeaux in January 2003.

He scored four goals in five league games and managed to help propel Steve Bruce’s team away from the bottom three and towards a final position of 13th in the table, following promotion the previous season.
Dugarry signed permanently in 2003/04. He saw out only the first season of his contract before leaving the club by mutual consent, citing family reasons, but he will always be held in high regard at St Andrews.


Jurgen Klinsmann - Sampdoria to Tottenham Hotspur (1998)

The German striker was already a hero at White Hart Lane after a memorable spell during the 1994/95 season. His return on a six month loan deal from Serie A side Sampdoria in December 1997 was greeted with great joy by the Tottenham faithful, with their club languishing in the relegation zone at the time.

Jurgen Klinsmann scored nine goals in his 15 Premier League appearances, including four away at Wimbledon in a crucial 6-2 victory.

The North London side survived - Spurs finishing the season in 14th place, four points above the drop zone and Klinsmann was rightfully lauded for his impact on the side.

Klinsmann ended up playing the last top-level match of his illustrious career on the final day of that campaign, with the German inevitably netting in a 1-1 draw at home to Southampton.


Ivan Campo - Real Madrid to Bolton Wanderers (2002/03)

The Spaniard was a regular for a while at Real Madrid, so when Bolton manager Sam Allardyce acquired his services back in August 2002 it was a real coup for the Premier League strugglers.

The defender was a key man in helping The Trotters survive on the final day of the season. He enjoyed the loan spell so much that he signed on a permanent basis in the summer of 2003, staying until 2008.

The Spanish centre-back was converted into a holding midfielder and Bolton reached the League Cup final in 2004 and the club finished eighth in the league, at the time the highest finish in their Premiership history.

In 2005, Bolton finished sixth in the league, thus earning qualification for the UEFA Cup for the first time in their history.

Campo scored a 43-yard screamer on the opening day of the 2006/07 season against Spurs, thus endearing him further to the the Bolton faithful! Campo fitted in well with Bolton's style of play, but also topped the charts for most red and yellow cards received of any player in the Premier League in 2006–07.

Campo was so popular and such a success during his time at the Reebok Stadium that he gained cult hero status in the process.


Ronnie Rosenthal - Standard Liege to Liverpool (1990)

Rocket Ronny had been on trial at first division Luton Town where he scored two goals in three games but they couldn't broker a deal with Standard Liege. Liverpool asked Liege if they could have a look and after only one reserve appearance he was signed on loan in March 1990 until the end of the season.

At the time of Rosenthal's arrival at Anfield Liverpool trailing Aston Villa in the title race.
However, it did not take the relatively unknown forward long to make a mark in England, with Rosenthal scoring a 'perfect hat-trick' on his full debut in a 4-0 win at Charlton Athletic on 11 April 1990.

The Israel international's seven goals in only eight league fixtures were crucial in Kenny Dalglish’s side going on to win that season's 1989/90 First Division Championship (The inception of the English Premier League was in 1992).

On 29 June 1990 Rosenthal was signed permanently by Liverpool for a fee of £1.1m making him the first foreign player bought by an English club for more than £1m. However he never went on to make the same impact at the club, as when he had first joined on loan, mainly making appearances from the bench.

Rosenthal played 97 times for the Reds, scoring 22 goals. Rosenthal moved to Tottenham Hotspur in January 1994, for a fee of £250,000.



Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Babe of the Month - Pro Golfer & Model Blair O'Neal


Blair O'Neal was born in was born on 14th May 1981 in Macomb, Illinois, USA.

Her family moved to Arizona when at the age of two where she spent the rest of her childhood. At an early age Blair enjoyed ballet, jazz and cheer. Then at the age of 11, Blair’s dad enrolled her and her brother in a junior golf clinic at San Marcos Golf Resort in Chandler, Arizona.

Entering high school, Blair had already established herself as one of the best junior golfers in the state. She eventually made the decision to take her talents to Corona Del Sol High School in Chandler, Arizona. Blair was a double threat earning high marks in academics and adding to her trophy collection on the golf course. 

Blair was a three-time medallist at the 5A Regional Golf Championship, four-time Golf MVP and eventually 5A Arizona State Girls Golf Champion.

Despite countless collegiate offer letters, her childhood dream a reality and accepted a full ride scholarship to Arizona State University.
She competed all four years as an Arizona State Sun Devil having never missed or being sat out of a single tournament. And while doing so, she was crowned a two time NCAA women’s long-drive champion.



After college, Blair quickly turned professional and about the same time, booked her first modeling gig. After a short stint playing golf in Asia, she quickly gained status on the LPGA Symetra Tour (then known as the LPGA Futures Tour). For two years Blair fought financial instability and then a broken foot, and eventually made the decision to put her golf game on hold.


For the next three years Blair pursued her modelling career. She eventually racked up quite the modeling resume through runway fashion shows, television hosting, catalogues, magazine covers, websites and commercial advertisements.

Then one day she received a call from the creators of the Golf Channel’s Big Break television series. Golf Channel gotten wind of Blair through the golf community and asked her to audition. But having to knock the dust off her clubs just to audition, Blair was eventually denied.


So back to modeling she went and down went the golf clubs, again. But after nearly two more years of modeling, Blair got another call from the Golf Channel. This time they weren’t interested in Blair auditioning they wanted her on the show! Without a minute of hesitation, she accepted. During the spring of 2009, Blair competed on the Golf Channel’s Big Break: Prince Edward Island. And despite the lack of preparation time, she finished runner up. But more importantly, she revived her golfing career.

Having been away from the game for over four years, she lost her status on the LPGA Symetra Tour (then known as the LPGA Futures Tour). So Blair took to the local mini-tours to freshen up her game. While doing so, she received another call from the Golf Channel asking her to come back to do another Big Break reunion show. This time she was fully prepared. In the fall of 2010, Blair was crowned the winner of Big Break: Dominican Republic.



Blair’s Big Break winnings provided her the financial stability to pursue the game at the highest level. Later in 2010 she went to LPGA Qualifying School, making it to the final stage.

Although falling just short of obtaining her LPGA tour card, she got back her full status on the LPGA Symetra Tour. And in doing so, she proudly signed on with Cobra-Puma as her primary sponsor. In 2012, Blair completed her first full season on the LPGA Symetra Tour. Blair currently continues her quest of one day obtaining her full LPGA card.

When not crushing drives, the 5′ 9″ blonde bombshell has made the most of her modeling career. Among countless other accolades, Blair has been named: “One of the Hottest 50 Athletes of All-Time” by Sports Illustrated, one of the “Top 10: Fit Golfers” by Golf Channel, one of the “Hottest Golfers” by Golf Digest, and one of “The 18 Most Beautiful Women in Golf” by Golf Magazine.

She appeared in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition magazine with Cobra-Puma three consecutive years from 2011-2013.

33 year-old Blair has also translated her experiences into the on-camera platform through her work as host of "The Golf Buzz" presented by Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday, "What’s in the Bag" with Cobra-Puma presented by the Golf Channel, "Hot Tips from a Hot Golfer" presented by Golf.com, and co-host of "Golf’s Sexiest Shots" presented by Golf Digest.

Blair continues her mission as a dedicated athlete, but presents the look and the personality that will will brighten anyone’s day. Her competitiveness and drive, combined with her beauty and character, make her equally gifted on the golf course, on the runway, and on the streets!


You can follow Blair on Twitter, FacebookInstagram or
on her Website


Monday, March 23, 2015

All the latest transfer gossip across Europe, North and South America!


Here is a round up of all the latest transfer gossip across Europe, North and South America today!

Is your club involved?

Real Madrid, Manchester United, Liverpool, Dynamo Kiev, AS Roma, Paris Saint-Germain, Juventus, Atletico Madrid, Chelsea, Newcastle United, AC Milan, Borussia Dortmund, Lazio, Barcelona, Hoffenheim, Napoli, Bayern Munich, Valencia, Manchester City, Arsenal, Palermo, Sporting Lisbon, Derby County, Wolves, Colorado Rapids, West Ham, Tottenham, Stoke City, Queens Park Rangers, Rosario Central, Inter Milan, Norwich City, Nottingham Forest, Fenerbache, Middlesbrough, Fulham, Bretford, Wycombe Wanderers, Tranmere Rovers, Aston Villa, Blackburn Rovers and Barnsley.................are all caught up in the latest transfer news/rumours across Europe, North and South America as we speak!


Spanish international goalkeeper David de Gea (24) has just rejected a new contract offer from Manchester United. Currently on a deal with the Red Devils until June 2016, the former Atletico rising star is one of Real Madrid's main targets, and is seen as a possible heir to Iker Casillas. De Gea is valued at roughly £50 million but United fear they will have to sell him for a cut-price deal this summer or he will just walk away for nothing a year later - Metro, Daily Mirror and transfermarketweb.com

Liverpool are weighing up a £19.5m move for Dynamo Kiev winger/forward Andriy Yarmolenko (right), who played a major role in dumping rivals Everton out of the Europa League. AS Roma are also interested in the Ukrainian winger/forward - The Daily Star, transfermarketweb and theguardian.com

Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain are talking about a possible loan swap deal involving Uruguayan international striker Edinson Cavani (28), who would join Red Devils, and Argentinian international offensive midfielder and winger Angel Di Maria (27). Cavani is however still a main target for Juventus and Atletico Madrid as well - transfermarketweb.com and theguardian.com

Juventus have no need to sell France midfielder Paul Pogba, 22, amid interest from Manchester United and Chelsea, says their general manager Giuseppe Marotta - skysports.com

Newcastle United's Dutch international right back Daryl Janmaat (25) is being tracked by a number of European clubs, including Liverpool, PSG, Juventus, AC Milan, Borussia Dortmund, Arsenal and Manchester United - transfermarketweb.com

Liverpool and England midfielder Jordan Henderson (24), has become a main target for Manchester City, who look likely to lose James Milner in the Summer. The former Sunderland player is also tracked by Barcelona - transfermarketweb.com

Speculation over the future of Lazio forward Felipe Anderson swirled in Italy on Monday after it was reported representatives from Manchester United had come to watch the Brazilian sensation - skysports.com

Manchester United target Arturo Vidal (right) has rubbished talk of a move away from Juventus - claiming he is happy with life in Italy. The Chile international has been linked with a switch to Old Trafford since last summer's World Cup, but no move has taken place.
The Red Devils are thought to be weighing up another approach for the midfielder when the window re-opens at the end of the season as Louis van Gaal looks to strengthen his squad - TalkSPORT

Newcastle United are keen on Hoffenheim right-back Andreas Beck. Germany international Beck can go this summer for around £1.5million with Napoli also keen on the 28 year-old - Daily Mirror

Manchester United have reportedly sent a club official to Spain to help thrash out a deal for Valencia and Argentina international defender Nicolas Otamendi - Metro and Manchester Evening News

Bayern Munich are ready to rival Manchester United for Italian full-back Matteo Darmian. The 25-year-old caught the eye of several clubs at last summer's World Cup in Brazil - but elected to stay at Torino despite interest from abroad. Torino have put a price tag of £15m on Darmian and will not entertain bids lower than that amount.

Arsenal are poised to meet Palermo officials next week to secure the £28.9m signing of 21 year-old Argentine forward Paulo Dybala (right). Manchester City and Tottenham have been linked with summer swoops, while Juventus are also reportedly keeping tabs on the situation - Metro, Daily Express and Sky Sport Italia

West Ham management are ready to try again signing Togolese international striker Emmanuel Adebayor (31), who's much likely to leave Tottenham as a free agent. Adebayor is also being tracked by Stoke City and Queens Park Rangers as well - Daily Mirror

Argentinian club Rosario Central's offensive midfielder and winger Franco Cervi is being tracked by Tottenham. The 20 year-old Argentinian is also a target for Inter Milan. It is believed that any deal for the player will cost in the region of 4 million euros - transfermarketweb.com

Valencia are tracking Sporting Lisbon'ss 22-year-old midfielder William Carvalho - Record (Portuguese sports newspaper)

Manchester United and English Under-20 international winger and forward James Wilson (19) has been targeted by Derby County in a loan deal - transfermarketweb.com

Wolves striker Kevin Doyle has signed a pre-contract agreement with Colorado Rapids. Doyle has put pen to paper on a two-and-a-half year deal with a 12-month option and will link up with the MLS side on July 1 when his contract at Molineux has expired - Daily Mirror

Norwich City and Nottingham Forest are seeking to sign Arsenal striker Chuba Akpom, 19, on loan for the rest of the season - The Sun and Nottingham Post

Nigerian striker Emmanuel Emenike is threatening to quit Turkish club Fenerbache after being racially abused by his own fans - The Sun

Middlesbrough have agreed a deal to bring in Fulham defender Fernando Amorebieta on loan for the rest of the season - Gazette Live

Brentford pair Sam Saunders and Nico Yennaris have extended their loans at Sky Bet League Two Wycombe Wanderers until the end of the season - skysports.com

Tranmere Rovers have extended Janoi Donacien's loan from Aston Villa until the end of the season - skysports.com

John O'Sullivan will return to Blackburn Rovers this week after his loan spell with Barnsley ended - skysports.com


Monday, March 16, 2015

Some Interesting, Unusual and Bizarre Facts about Football Players - Part Two


# In 1995 Zinedine Zidane almost joined Blackburn Rovers. However, the club chose Tim Sherwood instead, with chairman Jack Walker saying: “Who needs Zinedine Zidane? We’ve got Tim Sherwood.”

# Hull City defender Maynor Figueroa has three toes on his left foot.

# Swedish defender Jan Olsson was the unlucky player that Dutch legend Johan Cruyff made a fool of with the very first and now famous “Cruyff Turn” in the 1974 World Cup Finals held in West Germany.

# Zlatan Ibrahimovic had a checkered past growing up. The son of a tough Croatian mother and hard-drinking Bosnian father, he grew up in the Malmo ghetto of Rosengard. One of the current mega stars of football was a thief when he was a youngster. In fact he stole a lot - bikes, sweets, cars, anything and everything!

# Sir Stanley Matthews never received a booking in his 33-year long career.

# According to Mexico City police, crime rates in Mexico reduce when Javier Hernandez plays football. Additionally, and almost unbelievably, they suggest that more women go into labour than usual when the Manchester United striker plays.

# Fernando d’Ercoli, while playing for Pianta against Arpaxin 1989, got so mad after getting a red card that he snatched the card from the referee’s hand and ate it.

# Similarly in 1984, Mike Bagley of Bristol took the referee’s notebook and ripped out the page with his name on after he had been booked, and ate it.

# No doubt about it, the worst disciplinary record goes to Ricky Goddard of North Warnborough, a small village in North East Hapmshire. By 1992, he had been suspended for five out of his nine years as a footballer. On one occasion, he was banned for six months when he sneaked into the ref's changing-room at half time and urinated over all his clothes.

# Jack Charlton and Bobbie Charlton's uncle was the Newcastle United and England legend Jackie Milburn

# In 2008 Borussia Dortmund striker Robert Lewandoski had agreed to sign for Blackburn but an Icelandic ash cloud cancelled all airline flights, meaning the paperwork couldn't be completed before the deadline.

# While playing for Barcelona Danish legend Michael Laudrup participated in the 5–0 victory over bitter rivals Real Madrid during the 1993–94 season. The following season while playing for Real Madrid he aided in the revenge beating that Madrid gave Barça, the final score also being 5–0.

# Liverpool's Simon Mignolet started his career as a forward, and tried his hand at being a goalkeeper after he was dropped.

# On the other hand, Fernando Torres started his career as a goalkeeper, and later switched to become a striker.

# In 1978 Sheffield United boss Harry Haslam spotted a 17-year-old Diego Maradona on a scouting trip to Argentina and was so impressed that he struck a £200,000 deal there and then. But when Argentinos Juniors demanded more cash the Blades board refused to cough up, and bought Maradona's countryman Alejandro Sabella instead.

# Ryan Giggs' estranged father Danny Wilson is a former British professional rugby league player of the 1970's and 1980's. A Wales international stand-off, he played his club rugby for Widnes, Swinton, Runcorn Highfield and Springfield Borough.

# Dimitar Berbatov’s childhood hero was Alan Shearer, and the former Tottenham & Manchester United striker used to sleep in a Newcastle shirt when he was kid.

# In 1996, George Weah paid for his team-mates kits and expenses so Liberia could enter the African Nations Cup

# Arthur Conan Doyle, the writer most noted for his fictional stories about the detective Sherlock Holmes, played as a goalkeeper for amateur side Portsmouth Association Football Club, under the pseudonym A. C. Smith. (This club, disbanded in 1896, has no connection with the present-day Portsmouth Football Club, which was founded in 1898).

# In 1999, Chelsea signed Chris Sutton from Blackburn for £10 million. The striker scored just one league goal and left a season later.


Monday, March 09, 2015

Some Interesting, Unusual and Bizarre Facts about Football Players - Part One


# In 2013 the word "Inmessionante" was added to the Spanish Dictionary which references Lionel Messi. It was chosen because of its similarity to the Spanish word for “impressive.”
It is an adjective which is explained in the Spanish dictionary with two points:

1. Perfect way to play football, an unlimited capacity for self improvement.
2. Describes the best player of all time.

# Johan Cruyff's niece Estelle married Ruud Gullit in 2000, but she walked out on him in 2012 due to his continuous womanising. Estelle was his 3rd wife and Ruud has six children - two from each of his marriages.

Ryan Giggs never received a red card during his 24 season playing career with Manchester United. He was only once sent off when playing for Wales, on 5 September 2001 in a World Cup qualifier against Norway.

# Mark Hughes once played two games in a single day; In the morning he played for Wales against Czechoslovakia in Prague, drove across the border, and then turned out for Bayern Munich in the afternoon.

# Lille and France International footballer Rio-Antonio Mavuba was born in international waters. Mavuba, son of former Zaire international Ricky Mavuba Ndokia Ndombe - who featured at the 1974 World Cup finals - was born on a boat, off the coast of Angola, on 16 March 1984. His birth certificate does not have a nation listed, it just says “Born at Sea.”

# Former Tottenham Hotspur player and now television pundit and actor David Ginola has an unfortunate tale to tell. His name is an anagram for 'Vagina Dildo.'

# The younger brother of Joey Barton, Michael, is a convicted murderer. He and his cousin murdered their male victim, in an unprovoked racially motivated attack with an ice axe in 2005. Both were given life sentences with Michael Barton given a minimum term of 17 years and eight months.

# Ronaldinho first gained media attention in 1993, when aged 13 his youth team won a game 23-0. Ronaldinho scored all 23 goals in that victory.

# Charles Itandje of Cameroon is the only professional footballer to be sacked for laughing!
That’s what happened to the goalkeeper whilst at Liverpool in 2010. The reason his punishment was so harsh was because he was caught chuckling about something during a memorial service for the victims of Hillsborough.

# Manuel Neuer stars in the German version of the 2013 Disney/Pixar film 'Monsters University’. He provides the voice for the character Frank McCay

# Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro got the name "Ronaldo" after then-U.S. president Ronald Reagan, a favourite actor of his father's.

As a child, Jakub "Kuba" Błaszczykowski, the Borussia Dortmund and Polish international winger witnessed a tragedy, which had a major influence on his life. When he was ten years old his father stabbed his mother to death. After his father went to prison, Błaszczykowski and his brother were raised by their grandmother. Every goal he scores, he dedicates to his mother and can be seen looking up in the sky during goal celebrations.

# There have been many goalkeepers over the years who have fancied themselves as strikers.
Former Manchester United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel was renowned for going up for corners late into a game and scored 13 times in his career.

# West Ham and Cameroon international Alex Song has 27 siblings – 17 sisters and 10 brothers. His father, who died when Song was two, had five wives.

# Croatian footballer Luka Modrić and former Australian footballer Mark Viduka are cousins.

# Ronaldo Luís Nazário de Lima commonly known as the Brazilian Ronaldo, never won the UEFA Champions League despite playing for 5 teams that did. Zlatan Ibrahimovic has also never won the UEFA Champions League, despite playing for some of the world's biggest European clubs.

# Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet speaks 5 languages and has a degree in politics.


*Part Two will follow soon.

Sunday, March 01, 2015

Babe of the Month - Fitness Model Michelle Lewin


Michelle 'The Body' Lewin was born on 15th February 1986 in Maracay State of Aragua, Venezuela and lives in Miami Beach, Florida. She is one of the biggest names in female fitness models.

Michelle got into fitness after she had been modelling for a few years. She says as part of my job was to stay in shape I needed to go to the gym. I loved it and it led me to become a total gym rat. After months of intense training and a change of diet the abs started to show and I was enjoying the fitness lifestyle. Suddenly the modelling requests were coming from Fitness Magazines and Supplement companies. Michelle trains at Flamingo South Beach Fitness Center.

The Venezuelan beauty is known for her amazingly chiseled body, and amazing fitness tips aimed at females. Michelle teams sex appeal with raw muscles and it’s proving to be a winning combination!

Michelle is sponsored by Betancourt Nutrition and uses their Big Blend, Pro Amino, Bullnox and Fulldose products.

Michelle is a true inspiration for women across the globe and a sex symbol that embodies health and fitness. She has been on the cover of over a dozen magazines including being a Playboy cover model.



Her typical day starts with an early morning cardio workout with weightlifting in the evening. In between, Michelle is normally doing photo shoots for different companies.

Michelle's favourite quote is: “Everybody wants to be a bodybuilder, but nobody wants to lift no heavy-ass weights” – Ronnie Coleman

Michelle loves a 'selfie' and is the 'Queen of Social Media' - with a collective 4.5 million social media followers.


Michelle's Prefered Workout Routine: 
Full Routine:

Monday: Back/Biceps

Chin Ups (Wide Grip) 4×12
Chin Ups (Normal Grip) 4×10
Row Machine 4×12
T-Bar Rows 4×12
Dumbbell Curls 6×12
EZ Bar Curls 4×12
Straight Bar Cable Curls 4×12

Tuesday: Hamstrings/Calves
Lying Leg Curls 4×12
Seated Leg Curls 4×12
Deadlifts 4×10-15
Seated Calf Raises 8×20
Standing Calf Raises (Smith Machine) 6×20

Wednesday: Triceps/Shoulders
Standing Dumbbell Tricep Extensions 6×12
Skull Crushers EZ Bar 4 X 12
Rope Overhead Cable Extensions 4×12
Military Press 4×10
Dumbbell Shoulder Press 3×10
Upright Rows with EZ Bar 4×12
Side Lateral Raises 4×10

Thursday: Rest
Off

Friday: Legs
Lunges 4×12
Good Mornings 6×20
Leg Press (Single Leg) 4×15 (Each Leg)
Squats 4×12

Saturday: Abs
Hanging Knee Raises 4×12
Crunches 4×20
Crunch Machine 4×12
Crunches On Ball 4×20

Sunday: Rest 
Off


Michelle Lewin's meal plan:

Daily Diet:

Meal 1: Oatmeal with Big Blend from Betancourt Nutrition

Meal 2: Ham with Swedish Crackers (Wasa)

Meal 3: Chicken Breast with Brown Rice

Meal 4: Pork Chops with Salad

Meal 5: Beef with Asparagus & Spinach

Meal 6: Salmon with Broccoli

Meal 7: Casein Protein Shake (Before bed)



You can follow Michelle on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Instagram


Saturday, February 21, 2015

Footballers That Failed To Live Up To Their Full Potential!


Buying footballers can be a tricky business.
For the most part, clubs do usually make wise decisions on how to spend their pounds, euros and dollars. However there have always been those select few player transfer deals that can only be described as 'atrocious business decisions' - whatever the reason!

Being considered as one of the next great young footballers is certainly a badge of honour, but it can also be an unnecessary layer of pressure that can cause those young players to either rise to the occasion or fall through the cracks.

You’d think that spending upwards of £20 million on a player would guarantee success.......not a bit!

Whether it was because of attitude problems, or serious injuries at an early stage in their career, or just extended periods of poor form for whichever club they played for, these footballers are a stark reminder that not everyone playing the beautiful game can live up to the monumental hype put on them as a youngster.

Here are some of the most hyped footballers of all time who didn’t live up to their full potential!


Denilson

Denílson de Oliveira was a Brazilian starlet who was the world’s most expensive player when Real Betis purchased him from São Paulo in 1998 for £21.8 million. However, the story would end in misery for both player and club.

His second season with Betis saw the Spanish club relegated and Denilson loaned back to his boyhood club São Paulo. He eventually returned to Spain but was never an integral part of the squad.

From 1998 to 2005, Denilson competed in 186 matches for Real Betis but only scored 13 goals.
On leaving Real Betis the Brazilian went on to have short spells at clubs in the USA, France, Greece, Saudi Arabia, Vietnam and in his native Brazil.

For a world-record purchase, the Brazilian failed miserably to live up to his early promise.


Freddy Adu 

At the age of 14, Fredua Koranteng "Freddy" Adu became the youngest American ever to sign a major league professional contract in any team sport, when he was chosen by D.C. United as the number one overall pick in the 2004 MLS SuperDraft.

His reputation at the age of 14 as “the next Pele” has arguably been his undoing, even though he’s only 25 now. That said, the Ghanaian-born Adu has experienced a number of poor, short-lived stints at clubs like Benfica, and the numerous clubs he was loaned out to while with the Lisbon club, namely AS Monaco, Portuguese club Belenenses, Greek side Aris and Turkish side Çaykur Rizespor.
His last club was Jagodina in Serbia, where he made one substitute appearance before being released in December 2014.

Adu is currently a free agent.


Juan Sebastián Verón

In 2001 Verón became the most expensive transfer in English football when Manchester United broke the bank for the midfielder. They paid a whopping £28 million to Lazio (14 years ago) for his services.

After only 51 appearances and 11 goals, Verón was shipped off to Chelsea, who also overspent on the player as United recouped £15 million. The Argentinian spent one season at Stamford Bridge before being sent out on loan, back to Italy with Internazionale and then to his boyhood club Estudiantes de La Plataand in Argentina. Eventually he signed for Estudiantes on a permanent basis in 2007 and is now their clubs 'Director of Sports.'

Verón may go down as one of the biggest wastes of money in football history. Not only were his statistics poor, but his overall play was never at the level that led anyone to believe he was ever worth such a big sum.

His several big-money transfers made Verón then the most expensive footballer in history with a cumulative total of £77 million at that time.


Pablo Aimar

Pablo César Aimar Giordano, the playmaking midfielder was dubbed the "new Maradona" early in his career. When just 21, he signed with Valencia in Spain from River Plate for a fee of €24 million million in 2001. Aimar’s time with Los Che was blighted by injuries including a bout with meningitis and he would later sign with Real Zaragoza for €12 million in 2006 and then Benfica for €6.5 million in 2008. In 2013 he went to playclub football in Malaysia, but was released after one season due to injury problems. Aimar has apparently gone back to River Plate to train with the team, but injuries may hold him back from signing a contract.
Injuries played a major factor in Aimar failing to fulfil his potential, but he did earn 52 caps for Argentina over a 10 year period.

The 35 year-old is currently a free agent.


Ricardo Quaresma 

Ricardo Andrade Quaresma Bernardo made his professional debut back in 2001 for Sporting Lisbon, but is only now finally starting to get his career somewhat back on track following a successful season last year with Porto, and just missing out on being selected for Portugal’s 2014 World Cup squad.

The Portuguese winger who has speed, finesse and an array of fancy footwork was once hailed as a talent with just as much promise as his countryman Cristiano Ronaldo. He has largely failed to live up to high expectations, and has been criticised for having attitude problems and purported selfishness on the pitch.

Sporting sold Quaresma to Barcelona for a reported €6 million fee in 2003, but in the summer of 2004 he announced his refusal to play for Barça as long as Frank Rijkaard was in charge. As a result he joined Porto not long after. Quaresma was heavily criticised during his first year with Porto for being selfish and frequently trying to dribble past defenders rather than making a simple pass. He gradually began to incorporate his team-mates into the game, however, and by his third year with Porto, he had become a fan favourite and a key component of the squad.

In September 2008, Quaresma signed for Italian champions Internazionale, managed by José Mourinhoin a cash/player exchange fee of €18.6 million but his time in Italy was not considered a success, with him being given the Bidone d'oro (Golden Trashcan) award for being Serie A’s most disappointing player in 2008. In 2009 he joined Chelsea on loan before returning to Italy, but he did not feature much in Mourinho's plans as the club

In 2010, Quaresma joined Beşiktaş in Turkey for €7.3 million, but in April 2011 Quaresma and veteran player Nihat Kahveci had a spat on the pitch. Nihat was upset at Quaresma for failing to pass the ball and the altercation was broken up by team mates. He also had an altercation with manager Carlos Carvalhal in the dressing room at half-time in March 2012 after Carvalhal substituted Quaresma.
Quaresma did not take the news lightly and began throwing water bottles before launching a stinging attack at Carvalhal. He was released by the club in December 2012, six months before his contract was due to run out.

Quaresma returned to Porto on 1st January 2014 where over ten thousand fans greeted him at the training ground.


Robinho

Robson de Souza began is career with Santos in Brazil in 2002 at the age of 18. His form for Santos was sensational and similar to Freddy Adu, Robinho’s skills were compared to those of Pele. Robinho's goal record for Santos stood at nearly a goal every other game and earned him a big money move to Real Madrid in 2005. Despite needing time to make himself a regular at Madrid his three years spent with Los Galacticos was considered a success, making 101 appearances and scoring 25 times.

Robinho's £33 million move to Manchester City was a definite setback for his career. Signing with the big-spending club despite wanting to sign for Chelsea, Robinho did well in his first season but injuries caused him to be an afterthought, eventually going back to Santos on loan in January 2010. He then signed with AC Milan for £15 million in August 2010, which was also an up and down time for him. In July 2013, Robinho signed a new contract with Milan on a reduced wage, keeping him with the Rossoneri until 2016.

In August 2014 he re-joined Santos on a one-year loan deal.


Jose Antonio Reyes

For someone who made their senior team debut for Sevilla at the age of only 16, followed by a £10.5 million transfer to Arsenal at age 20, you could say that much was expected of this Spanish winger’s future. Although he’s turned out to be a decent player, José Antonio Reyes Calderón hasn’t exactly been the offensive dynamo people hoped he would be, with his time at Arsenal being largely highlighted by homesickness and inconsistent play, despite winning the league title with them in 2004.

In 2006/07 Reyes joined Real Madrid on a season-long loan deal and it was expected he would join them permanently after his loan expired.
However in 2007 Reyes penned a four-year deal, reportedly worth €12 million with Real's city rivals Atlético Madrid.
After only one season with Atlético, it was announced that Reyes would be joining Benfica on a one-year loan deal.
Reyes returned the following season and had a much more productive spell with Atlético, before falling out with new manager Gregorio Manzano in 2011.

In January 2012 Sevilla confirmed the signing of Reyes, and that is where he continues to ply his trade.


Dmytro Chygrynskiy 

Dmytro Anatoliyovych Chygrynskiy is arguably the worst purchase in Barcelona history. Chygrynskiy was the first Ukrainian player to ever play for Barcelona.
The Ukrainian was just one of many terrible moves made by former manager Pep Guardiola.

Chygrynskiy made his debut for Shakhtar Donetsk in the Ukrainian Premier League in 2004, at the age of 17. Chygrynskiy was thought to be a formidable defender able to play with the ball at his feet and provide strong aerial coverage for the back line. However, his ability never panned out, and the defender really struggled in La Liga.

After just one season and a mere 14 matches, Barcelona sold the defender back to his former club for €15 million (a loss of €10 million overall)

Chygrynskiy left Shakhtar by mutual consent in February 2015 and seven days later Chygrynskiy joined Ukrainian rivals FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk.


Alberto Aquilani

Alberto Aquilani made his debut for Roma in Serie A at the age of 18 in May 2002.

His favoured position is that of central midfielder, a position which enables him to make attacking runs and at Roma he had been praised for his vision, technique, quick incisive passing and long-range shooting.

After Real Madrid purchased Xabi Alonso in 2009, there was a giant hole in the Liverpool midfield. Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez turned to Italian starlet Aquilani to fill the void left by Alonso. Liverpool paid Roma a substantial fee for the Italian, reportedly £17 million and handed him a five-year contract.

The midfielder was never able to find his form or provide a decent cover for the departed Xabi Alonso.
Injuries played a big part in the saddening career of Aquilani in England. The Italian played only 28 games for Liverpool, and scored just twice.

Aquilani was sent back to Italy on loan, representing Juventus between 2010 and 2011 and AC Milan between 2011 and 2012. Aquilani then returned to Liverpool for pre-season training in preparation for their 2012–13 season. Although his agent stated that Aquilani would remain at Liverpool the club accepted an undisclosed fee for the midfielder from Fiorentina, and his transfer was completed in August 2012.

Liverpool in fact allowed Aquilani to leave the club for free therefore 'The Reds' never received anything back on their hefty investment, and thus Roma also received nothing from the bonus clause that they inserted in his transfer between the two clubs.



Tuesday, February 10, 2015

The Most Influential Soccer Agents in the World


Before the 1990s, most soccer players did not use agents. In some cases, they used their fathers as agents. Because of most parents' naivete about the football business, these young footballers were often given less-than-stellar contracts by football clubs, which yielded lower salaries than they thought they deserved. 

The influx of money into the game since the formation of the 'Premiership' in England in 1992 (now known as the Premier League) created a merchant class in soccer – agents. Modern agents represent both players and managers, and they’re largely responsible for brokering transfers between clubs, managing contract negotiations, and handling all the paperwork involved as the intermediary between players and club management. 
Some agents have also got obscenely rich thanks to all the money floating around the game these days.

Generally speaking, agents get a small percentage cut of their players’ contracts. The precise amount will vary wildly from agent to agent, but that isn’t their only source of revenue. When agents are involved in brokering transfers between clubs, they tend to get a pretty significant amount of cash as well. 

Sure, we may be only talking about 3-5%, but 3-5% of £50 million is still £1.5 – £2.5 million – all for a few weeks of work. Few agents make that kind of money, but the men on this list all have superstar clients who command those kinds of prices, and all that wealth has trickled down to make these agents wealthy and powerful beyond their wildest dreams.

Barry Silkman: 

Although not strictly a player agent, Barry Silkman has made his name and his fortune as a master broker for transfers between top clubs. After a 16-year playing career spanning 14 clubs, in which he was mildly successful, Silkman attempted to turn management into his new day job. When that fell through he found his calling in acting as an agent in the 1990s, and he hasn’t stopped yet. With clients such as David Villa, Demba Ba and Ravel Morrison, Silkman’s ever-growing portfolio of star players means the 61-year-old will be around for the foreseeable future.

Jerome Anderson:

England’s most famous agent has spent a career representing some of the biggest names to ever play in the English Premier League. A banker by trade, Anderson made the transition into player representation just before agents became the powerful merchant-class they are today in the game. Initially he made his name thanks to the talent he brought to Arsenal at the turn of the 21st century; Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp, Tony Adams, Ian Wright, all were brought to Arsenal thanks to Anderson’s help. These days he’s more closely associated with Manchester City, but represents a wide array of players including John Obi Mikel, the Belguim Axel Witsel and Kieran Gibbs.

Pini Zahavi:

Zahavi hit the headlines through his dealings at Chelsea following the takeover by Roman Abramovich in 2003. Zahavi was actively involved both in the purchase of the club and of negotiationg contracts for all the star players that it would sign in the initial 2-year period after the purchase, with several transfers being investigated for alleged corruption.
The Israeli was also involved in several dodgy takeovers at Portsmouth, but his bread and butter is transfers.
He currently represents players such as Carlos Tevez and Rio Ferdinand.

Mino Raiola:

The mastermind behind journeyman Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Raiola has become an increasing presence in a number of big transfer deals, from all across Europe. Borussia Dortmund's Henrikh Mkhitaryan is his latest client, and he stands to make plenty of money this summer with Liverpool and Inter Milan both keen.
Raiola is ruthless, and also represents the likes of Paul Pogba, Mario Balotelli and Tottenham and France star Etienne Capoue, while Paris Saint-Germain's Edinson Cavani counts him as an adviser.

Jonathan Barnett:

Known for helping launch Lennox Lewis’ career in boxing, Barnett hit the headlines in 2006 when he was charged over tapping up offences, relating to Ashley Cole’s transfer from Arsenal to Chelsea. These days he keeps his head down, only boasting a few – albeit huge – clients.
These include Gareth Bale, Joe Hart, Wojciech Szczesny, Rafael, Fabio and Darren Bent.

Cezary Kucharski:

Most agents tend to stick to their native countries to draw most of their talent from, which makes perfect sense. Naturally their network of contacts is larger and deeper in their home countries. 
Cezary Kucharski is the biggest agent in his native Poland, and he’s made his name attracting some of the top Polish talent to his brand in recent years. He has world-class Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski under contract, as well as Dortmund winger Jakub Blaszcykowski. 
Kucharski was a player himself as recently as 2007, but now the 42-year-old prefers to sit back and let others handle the on-field work while he takes care of the paperwork in the back – getting considerably richer in the process.

Pere Guardiola:

Brother of Bayern Munich coach Pepe, Pere Guardiola is an established agent in his own right, representing talent such as Barcelona's Luis Suarez, Arsenal's Hector Bellerin and Jon Toral, and Deportivo de La Coruña winger Isaac Cuenca. 


Paul Stretford:

Stretford is one of the boldest agents around, having dared to take on a 16-year-old Wayne Rooney - one of the most marketable players in the world and manage his career ever since. He was the driving influence behind the England striker’s two transfer requests at Manchester United, and it speaks volumes for the agent that he even dared to take on Sir Alex Ferguson.
Stretford will work closely with Rooney between now and the Summer, as he likely plots a move away from Old Trafford. It will be the second big move of his career, and nothing looks like standing in the way this time, with Stretford likely to use his master contact Jorge Mendes to negotiate a transfer abroad.
Stretford also represents superstar coaches Harry Redknapp and Roberto Mancini.

Jorge Mendes: 

Few are better connected in world football than Mendes, the king of football agents - and he’s never even set foot on a pitch as a player or as a manager!


Having secured a monopoly on Portuguese football years ago, the names of his clients are a who's who in the footballing world: Cristiano Ronaldo, James Rodriguez, José Mourinho, Ramadel Falcao and Angel Di Maria to name but a few! Mendes is the most sought after agent in the world for both players and clubs, and with good reason; he has control of some of the game’s elite-tier talent, including his crown jewel Cristiano Ronaldo.