Tag Archives: Tottenham Hotspur

Liverpool, Everton and Roma compete to sign bargain-price Xherdan Shaqiri

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Merseyside rivals Liverpool and Everton are set to battle it out alongside Roma and Tottenham Hotspur for the signature of Stoke City’s Swiss star Xherdan Shaqiri.

Shaqiri is looking for an exit from Stoke, who were relegated to the Championship at the end of last season, and has a release clause in his contract of just £12 million.

With a player of Shaqiri’s quality available for such a relatively little amount – the 26-year-old scored 8 goals and made 7 assists in 36 appearances for the Potters last season – it is no surprise that clubs are queuing up to sign him.

Shaqiri can play in a number of positions in midfield, and his versatility would appeal to Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, as he seeks to further boost his options, having already signed Fabinho and Naby Keita for next season.

Everton and Tottenham Hotspur are also said to be interested – and both could offer Shaqiri more playing time that Liverpool could – Spurs could also offer Champions League football. As could Italian side Roma, who are also said to be tracking him.

However, despite all the interest in him, it is unlikely that Shaqiri will make any decision until after the World Cup, which starts later this month. He is in the Switzerland squad and is focusing on that for now.

Manchester United lead chase for Real Madrid star Gareth Bale

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Manchester United are at the head of a queue of a number of clubs looking at signing Real Madrid winger Gareth Bale this summer.

Bale, who scored two goals in Madrid’s 3-1 win over Liverpool in the Champions League final, is reportedly unhappy at the club. He hasn’t been a regular starter recently – Zinedine Zidane preferred Isco in the final – and Bale’s relationship with his manager is also apparently strained too.

The Welshman, who turns 29 this summer, has made it clear he wants to be playing week-in, week-out at this stage of his career. This has been taken as a hint he is looking to play elsewhere, despite winning four Champions League winners medals in 5 seasons.

United have a long-standing interest in Bale, having tried to sign him on 2 previous occasions. Manager Jose Mourinho is thought to be planning an overhaul of his squad as he seeks to get closer to runaway Premier League champions Manchester City. Bale would fit the bill as the sort of marquee signing United are looking for.

Madrid are also looking at a major refresh of their squad, so could be willing to let Bale go. However, he wouldn’t come cheap – Real would be looking to make a profit on a player they signed for a then-record £85 million in 2013, with some speculation they would be looking for up to double that amount.

Other clubs are likely to be interested in signing Bale, including German champions Bayern Munich, although apparently there is no interest from Manchester City. Bale’s wages, said to be £650,000 a week, would also be a stumbling block for many sides – including former side Tottenham Hotspur – but not United.

However, any move will be down to the player himself and will depend on any assurances over playing time and if there is any prospect of repairing his fractured relationship with Zidane.

All the factz you need to know on today’s Premier League matches

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The final day of the 2017/18 Premier League season sees all 20 clubs kick-off at the same time. While most of the big issues have been settled – champions, champions league qualification and relegation – there is still plenty to play for. All matches kick off at 3pm. Here are the factz you need to know:

Burnley v AFC Bournemouth

* Burnley beat Bournemouth 1-2 at the Vitality Stadium earlier in the season.
* Burnley are assured of 7th place – their highest league finish since 6th place in the old Division 1 in 1974.
* Bournemouth have won just 1 of their last 12 away matches (6 defeats).
* Cherries manager Eddie Howe has used just 21 players this season.
* There have been just 30 goals scored in 18 previous PL matches at Turf Moor this season: 15 each for Burnley and their opponents.

Crystal Palace v West Bromwich Albion

* The sides played out a goalless draw back in December at the Hawthorns.
* Palace are in good form – 4 wins in their last 7 matches and just 1 defeat.
* West Brom have also hit form, just slightly too late to stave off relegation: they’ve won 3 and drawn 2 since Darren Moore took over.
* The Baggies have won as many matches in their last 4 outings as they did in their previous 42.
* Palace could finish 10th this season – their equal highest placing in the PL era, despite losing their first 7 matches.

Huddersfield Town v Arsenal

* Huddersfield’s last victory at home over Arsenal came back in 1971 at their old Leeds Road ground.
* Huddersfield have won just 3 of their last 17 league matches, losing 9.
* They have also scored just 28 goals – only Swansea have netted fewer.
* Arsenal have lost all 7 of their PL away matches in 2018.
* This is Arsene Wenger’s 1235th game in charge of the Gunners.

Liverpool v Brighton & Hove Albion

* Liverpool thrashed Brighton 1-5 at the Amex back in December.
* Liverpool need to avoid defeat to go through the whole season unbeaten at home.
* But they have won just one of their past 5 league matches, although they have only lost one as well.
* Brighton have won just 1 of their last 8 PL matches, losing 4.
* Brighton haven’t won in their last 12 away matches, losing 8. They have only scored 10 goals away from home all season.

Manchester United v Watford

* United won 2-4 at Vicarage Road earlier in the season.
* Manchester United are guaranteed to finish in second place – their highest placing since 2012/13 – Sir Alex Ferguson’s final season in charge when they won the title.
* Watford’s won last time out against Newcastle was their first in 8 matches.
* Watford haven’t scored in any of their last 8 away matches.
* United have kept 18 clean sheets this season – a League high.

Newcastle United v Chelsea

* Chelsea beat Newcastle 3-0 in December. The Blues also beat the Magpies 3-1 in the FA Cup.
* Newcastle have lost their last 4 matches. They won the 4 before that.
* Chelsea are unbeaten in 6, winning 4 of those matches.
* Newcastle could finish 10th today, if they better Crystal Palace’s result. But if they lose and other results don’t go their way they could finish as low as 15th.
* If Eden Hazard scores, he will move up to third on Chelsea’s all-time PL top scorer list. He’s currently tied on 69 with Jimmy-Floyd Hasselbaink.

Southampton v Manchester City

* A 96th minute winner from Raheem Sterling secured all 3 points for City in the reverse fixture in November.
* Saints have won 2 of their last 3 matches to secure their PL status.
* A win for City will see them become the first top flight team in history to reach the 100-point mark.
* A win would be their 32nd of the season – which would be another English top-flight record, beating Spurs’ mark from 1960/61.
* Saints aren’t great at home – winning just 19 points at St Mary’s so far this season. Only West Brom have won fewer points on home turf.

Swansea City v Stoke City

* Stoke beat Swansea 2-1 in the reverse fixture.
* Swansea need to win, hope Southampton lose and have a 10-goal swing to them to stay up.
* Swansea’s main problem has been goals – they’ve got just 27 all season.
* Stoke haven’t won in 13 PL matches (6 defeats).
* Stoke also have the worst away record – just 1 win and 10 point won.

Tottenham Hotspur v Leicester City

* Leicester beat Spurs 2-1 earlier in the season, thanks to goals from Vardy and Mahrez.
* Spurs are guaranteed a top-4 spot for the third time in four seasons – they haven’t had a run like that since the 1960s.
* Leicester have won 1 of their last 6 matches, losing 4.
* Harry Kane has scored 13 goals in 14 appearances at Wembley Stadium. He’s also scored 9 times against the Foxes.
* The last 0-0 draw between the sides was back in 1948.

West Ham United v Everton

* Everton thrashed the Hammers 4-0 at Goodison Park last November, with Wayne Rooney bagging a hat-trick.
* West Ham have lost 5 of their last 10 PL matches, winning just 2.
* Everton have won 4 of their last 10 PL matches, losing 3.
* West Ham have lost 10 games by a margin of 3 or more goals this season – no top flight side has lost more than that since West Brom in 1985/6.
* Everton have beaten West Ham 24 times in 43 PL matches. The Hammers have won on just 7 occasions.

Tottenham Hotspur could have to sell Harry Kane to fund new stadium – claim

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Tottenham Hotspur might have to sell their talismanic striker Harry Kane in order to help fund their move to their new stadium, it has been claimed.

Kane has been in stellar form for Spurs again this season, second only to Mohamed Salah in the Premier League scoring chart with 27 goals. However, outgoing Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has claimed he may have to be sold.

Wenger was in charge when Arsenal moved from Highbury to the Emirates Stadium back in 2004, which coincided with the club becoming also-rans in the Premier League and seemingly unable to compete with other leading clubs for big money signings. He thinks something similar could happen to Spurs as they move to their new stadium next season.

Spurs’ bosses have always denied that star players will be sold to help finance the £800 million stadium. As the club has qualified for next season’s Champions League, that will also help to boost the club’s coffers.

“The prices for the stadiums have doubled, but the transfers of players have tripled or quadrupled,” said Wenger.

“But they [Spurs] have to face it. Will they have to sell players? Even to Arsenal maybe?”

Of course, this could be Wenger, ahead of his final match in charge of the Gunners, having a last sly pop at his traditional rivals. If so, well played, Mr Wenger.

All the factz on the 9 May Premier League matches

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There are 4 Premier League matches tonight, which have a bearing on the relegation fight and race for Champions League spots. Here are the factz you need to know:

Chelsea v Huddersfield Town

* Chelsea beat Huddersfield 1-3 earlier in the season.
* Chelsea have won their last 4 – they haven’t won 5 consecutive matches this season.
* The Terriers have won 2 of their last 8 PL matches and lost 4.
* Huddersfield need a point to ensure that they play PL football again next season.
* This is Chelsea’s 500th home match in the PL era. They’ve won 313 of their previous 499, and lost just 66.

Leicester City v Arsenal

* Arsenal edged a 7-goal thriller back in August, coming back from 2-3 down, with Olivier Giroud netting the winner 5 minutes from time.
* Leicester have picked up just 1 point in their past 5 matches.
* Arsenal have lost all 6 PL away matches they’ve played in 2018.
* But Leicester aren’t good at home – they’re without a win in 6 at the King Power – although there has been 4 draws in that run.
* In 11 appearances Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has scored 8 goals and provided 4 assists for Arsenal.

Manchester City v Brighton & Hove Albion

* City need two points from their last 2 matches to beat Chelsea’s record points tally for a season – they won 95 in 2004/5.
* Two wins would take them to the 100 point mark – something no English top-flight club has ever done.
* Brighton ended a 6-match winless run last time out with victory over Manchester United.
* Brighton haven’t won away from home in the PL since November – a run of 11 matches, of which they have lost 7.
* City need 2 goals to break another Chelsea record of goals in a PL season – 103.

Tottenham Hotspur v Newcastle United

* Spurs beat Newcastle 0-2 at St James’ Park back in August.
* Spurs’ form has stuttered recently, with 2 defeats in their last 4 outings.
* Newcastle are also stumbling, with 3 successive defeats.
* Spurs failed to score for the first time in 24 PL matches last time out.
* Newcastle’s away form isn’t great – just 1 win and 4 defeats in their last 7 PL matches.