Tuesday, 26 August 2014

The Balotelli Gamble

After Liverpool successfully secured the signing of Mario Balotelli shortly before their clash with the impressive Manchester City, we thought we'd take a look at whether this was a genius move or whether Liverpool were doomed. Please feel free to add comments with your opinions, I'd love to know what others think!

I won't bore you with Balotelli's past, who he played for when he was 11, how many goals he scored for them, what his favourite colour as as a child etc., what I want to talk about is his impact on the Liverpool team. 

Liverpool nabbed Balotelli for a fee reported to be around £16m (BBC Sports) and I think this is a pretty good price. If you go on twitter you'll see all the comparisons like the fact that Balotelli only cost Liverpool £5m more than Fulham paid for Ross Mcormack and if you look at it like that then it probably is good value. However, don't forget, Milan were trying to sell him and I can imagine it's incredibly difficult to push the price up with someone who has a history like Mario does. I think only time will tell if it was good value for money but he definitely represents a huge risk.

Sunday, 24 August 2014

10 Things We Learned From Chelsea vs Leicester

After Chelsea defeated Leicester 2-0 at Stamford Bridge we took a look at what this game was able to tell us about both teams. Here's 10 things we picked up!

1. Diego Costa is exactly what Chelsea need
This is probably the most obvious one of all so we'll get it out the way first but you can't deny that Chelsea have been crying out for someone like Costa for ages. Not only did they desperately need a classy striker but Costa fits the bill perfectly. At risk of repeating Alan Shearer on MOTD (who was right by the way), Costa has more to his game than goals and his hold up play will be very useful as it allows others to run in behind and with Fabregas' quality final ball, chances should be abundant. Also, Costa is a natural goalscorer, a poacher, as shown by his first two goals. 

2. Leicester aren't as easy to beat as most thought they would be
Leicester have given a very decent account of themselves in their opening games and have surprised many. Although their fixture list seems to have given them a baptism of fire, they look like they could be a good side when they get out the other side of it. Following an excellent comeback against a strong Everton side, they produced an admirable display against Chelsea. Any team thinking they're an easy three points should think again!

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Premier League 2013/2014 Preview

The fever of the Premier League is finally returning after three months. Without a shadow of a doubt this season will be different. How big can a change get when you realise that there will be no Sir Alex to lead out the Manchester United side, and also, the inevitable return of the Special One – Jose Mourinho. With massive changes at Chelsea, United, City etc. It will be a feisty encounter and fascinating no doubt, to see who takes the glory this time around.

Lets talk a bit about who will be facing who on the opening day of the Premier League 2013-14 season. Here are my thoughts on the possible outcomes and what players can make a name for themselves over the course of the new season.

Liverpool vs. Stoke

Stoke have done extremely well in the past couple of years to stay up and become a side which most of the teams fear because of how they play but that might change this year with a shift in the managerial position. Is it possibly the last chance for Mark Hughes to really make a name for himself? On the other hand, the real task for Liverpool would be to retain the services of the Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez. Rogers has done well to bring in good, solid young players and they can play a good role in the progress of the team. If Suarez stays, surely Champions League spot is not out of reach for them?

Prediction for the fixture: 2-0 to Liverpool.

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Summer 2013: Transfer Bargains

Forget the extortionately priced players, here's some players that clubs should really think about buying as they're available for very reasonable prices! The list is dominated by Premier League players with the exception of the Brazilian, Fred. Of course, we all have opinions and mine is just one of them so tell me in the comments below if you think anyone should be added to this list, or if you can think of any foreign players who deserve a place there!

Tomas Rosicky
Rosicky has been at Arsenal a while now and although has failed to grab many headlines, he has caught the eye at times. His time at Arsenal has been extremely disjointed due to many factors, mainly injury. However, Rosicky showed in his excellent performance away at West Brom last season that he still has something to offer. I think Rosicky could massively benefit from a different environment and he could improve a number of teams in the Premier League. He could be available at a very reasonable price too, probably less than £5m.

Sunday, 7 July 2013

Jozy Altidore - Scout Report

At the time of writing, rumours are rife that Sunderland have completed the signing of 23-year-old striker Jozy Altidore. The Daily Express recently reported that Sunderland had reached an agreement with Altidore's club, AZ Alkmaar and now, Alkmaar have officially confirmed this on their website. With his transfer to Sunderland, fans will undoubtedly be desperate to know more about the young American striker after only seeing him for a short spell during his loan to Hull City.

Sunday, 30 June 2013

Why Alan Pardew Should Be Sacked

Rewind back to the summer of 2012 when the magpies defied all expectations and finished 5th, fans were going into that transfer window full of expectations. The lure of Europa League and a team full of young ambitious players gave Newcastle the perfect platform to kick on and buy some players who could take the team to the next level. However, the club found themselves fighting for their Premier League status until the 37th game of the season when they beat an already relegated QPR side. 

Here we try and argue why Alan Pardew should be fired as manager:

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Fredy Guarin - Scout Report

At the time of writing, Tottenham have just been linked with Inter Milan's Fredy Guarin and as he isn't too well known by many, I've decided to put together another scout report for fans to find out a bit more about him.

Guarin is a Colombian midfielder currently plying his trade over in Italy for Inter Milan, however he started off at Colombian side Envigado. After enjoying loan spells at Boca Juniors and Saint  Etienne, he joined French club Saint Etienne permanently in 2007. He forced his way into the team and before long was moving again, this time to Portuguese side FC Porto. He stayed at Porto for 4 years, becoming an especially prominent figure in his final season there. After making 63 league appearances for Porto he went on loan to Inter Milan before joining permanently in May 2012. Since joining Inter he's impressed many and has been a regular in the squad ever since. 

Friday, 7 June 2013

La Liga Team of the Season - 2012/2013

As an enormous La Liga enthusiast, I (@TheTacticsRoom on Twitter) have thoroughly enjoyed the league season. Some of the world’s finest players ply their trade in Spain, and this is my selection of the players who have impressed me the most over the course of the year.