South Korea stunned the football world with their 2-1 victory over Czech Republic in Prague. Going that distance many would not have expected the win. The team keeps receiving commendation for that superb effort, though it was a victory over a 10-man Czech Republic team. The victory was the first ever for Korea over the Czechs.
Yoon Bitgaram was impressive for the team during the friendly match. The midfielder scored a goal and contributed to the second in the game played at Eden Arena. The teams had met four times going into the game. Three draws and a loss for Korea; a result that has changed after the game. In 2001, South Korea fell 5-1 to Czech and it was just sweet revenge on Sunday.
The victory was also great for the fans who watched the team crushed by the current Euro champions, Spain. Spain defeated the team by 6-1 in Austria, leaving the fans in misery. South Korea still have two more friendly games to play as they prepare for the final Asian qualifying round for the 2018 FIFA World Cup starting in September.
The overjoyed South Korea head coach Uli Stielike praised his players for their efforts, adding that they got the result they wanted to give them the needed boost in morale. He said:
“After the 6-1 defeat against Spain, it was important to see how much our players have recovered their mental strength. They showed that they were 100 percent recovered.”
The coach also said that if the team had lost again to the Czechs, it would have been difficult going into the qualifiers. He said he was confident that the boost would help them when they face strong teams. The 61-year old added that he noticed an improvement in the passing and ball winning. He hopes that the team would just keep up with the improvements.
After coming under serious criticism for its poor condition, the playing surface at Stade Pierre-Mauroy is finally going to be freshly placed in the middle of the on-going Euros.
The Union of the Football Associations in Europe which is the governing body of the Euros is believed to have conveyed the instructions regarding it to the French Football Federation.
A similar situation had arisen in the Euros in Switzerland 8 years back when St. Jakob Park had been resurfaced.
However, before all that, there is a game still to be played on the same surface, which is the damaged one, tonight and the teams facing off are the Group E leaders Italy and one of the pre quarter final aspirants in the group, Republic of Ireland.
Completely pissed off after visiting the ground yesterday, Antonio Conte, the Azzurri coach declared the conditions, especially the game area, unsuitable and unfit to be used in Europe’s biggest competition and said he had not expected that. read more …
Chris Hughton was disappointed to see Brighton failed to achieve qualification play-off final after a 1-1 draw with Sheffield Wednesday in the second leg.
A 2-0 loss in the first leg meant that his team were knocked out 3-1 on aggregate. The defeat was especially hard to take considering that Brighton missed out on the automatic promotion spots on goal difference, while they also finished 15 points ahead of Wednesday in the league table. Brighton were only two goals behind Middlesbrough in the goal difference stakes after a draw in the final game of the season.
Hughton has received a lot of praise for turning around the fortunes of the seagulls, but his major task comes ahead in the summer. He will have to motivate his players once again in order to fight next campaign. This will be the hardest part especially given that Brighton came so close to getting to the Premier League. Momentum and confidence always plays a major role when it comes to play-offs. Sheffield Wednesday seem to have more of it especially after their win over Cardiff City to secure the final play-off spot. Brighton, meanwhile, had just failed to achieve automatic promotion after having been one of the best teams in the division throughout the campaign. read more …
Claudio Ranieri says that he is unlikely to witness the game between Tottenham and Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Monday night.
Leicester City could potentially seal the Premier League title without kicking the ball, as any other result other than the victory for Spurs would see them crowned as champions. Leicester secured a 1-1 draw with Manchester United on Sunday. This improved their advantage over Spurs to 8 points with only two games left. Prior to the game, they needed only three points to win the title. Ranieri says that he will be on the plane to Italy while the game goes on.
Earlier, Chelsea fans and players have expressed their desire to see Leicester win the title ahead of Tottenham, who are their big rivals. After the recent 4-1 win over Bournemouth, the blues will come into the game on a positive frame of mind. They have been criticised in recent weeks for their lack of commitment – since there is nothing to play for – but they are expected to step up their game just in time for this match. Ranieri says that he will at least be to follow the result once his plane lands in Italy. Even if the outcome is not a positive one for Ranieri, Leicester City will feel confident about winning the title at home next weekend. read more …
For months now speculation has been intense among critics and fans alike as to who will go to France and who will unfortunately have to stay home, with most of the focus being on the England team. As expected, there are undoubtedly highs and lows in the latest reports for both the players and spectators; one team member thought to be disappointed is Arsenal midfielder, Theo Walcott.
The 27 year old could find himself without a place in France as it is said that Roy Hodgson is swinging towards picking Newcastle United’s Andros Townsend instead. Despite there being a couple of weeks left until the final team deadline, it is suspected that Hodgson will select a group of 25 before dropping two prior to May 31st. read more …
Everton was knocked out of the FA Cup after losing against Manchester United and things haven’t been going any better for Everton in the Premier League either as they are consistently dropping points.
Roberto Martinez and his squad has recently suffered a defeat against Liverpool and had to settle with successive draws against Southampton, Crystal Palace and Watford. The future of Roberto Martinez is now under scrutiny as the board of directors of Everton are having discussions in relation to the managerial role of Martinez after this season reaches it’s end.
There is already a list of potential managers who can replace Roberto Martinez and that are rumored to be in the watch-list of Everton, these managers include: Manuel Pellegrini, Frank de Boer and Ronald Koeman.
Manuel Pellegrini is currently in charge of Manchester City but he will be replaced by Pep Guardiola at the end of the season and the Chilean manager is going to become a viable option for Everton in case that they do decide to sack Roberto Martinez. read more …
Tottenham defender Toby Alderweireld says that the club are ready to face the next seven games as their finals.
There are only seven matches left in the Premier League with Spurs being five points behind Leicester City. Going past the unlikely table leaders will provide them with their first league title since 1964. Further, it would also be seen as the ultimate achievement by an English club considering the face of competition that includes Manchester City, Arsenal, and Chelsea. The last 20 years have witnessed a determination by the rich clubs, but 2015-16 will be seen as the season in which money did not have a role to play.
City have effectively been ruled out of the title after a 1-0 loss against Manchester United recently. Even though Arsenal remain defiant about their title hopes, this season it is effectively seen as a two horse race with Leicester and Tottenham competing for the title. Leicester were in the relegation zone 12 months ago, while Spurs began the campaign with the objective of a top four finish at best.Alderweireld says that trying to focus every game as it comes may sound as a cliche but this is what Tottenham need to follow in order to stand a chance of leapfrogging Leicester City for the title. read more …
Arsene Wenger does not even want to hear the name of Andy Carroll these days – when the name of West Ham United striker popped up in the press conference of the Gunners boss pre-Crystal Palace match; he was irritated to the bits.
He has just not sunk in the fact yet that Carroll was allowed to carry on in the previous game versus Arsenal in spite of committing that big foul which, in his eyes, should have seen the 27-year old sent off straightaway. read more …
Leicester City managed to remain at the top of the table following a 2-0 win against Liverpool.
It was one of the impressive results of the season for the surprising team. Leicester were expected to be in a relegation dogfight, but to be leading the table with only two months of action left is rather surprising. Many expected the club’s title challenge to wither after Christmas, but there has been no signs of slowing down now that striker Jamie Vardy is in full swing once again. Despite the positive, manager Claudio Ranieri continued to downplay the title ambitions of the club.
Ranieri says that there are still several of matches left for his team and they are not considering taking a relaxed step just yet. One of the biggest challenges will come in the form of a match against second placed Manchester City at the Etihad stadium on Saturday. Leicester have a three-point advantage over City, but they will be aware of the opposition’s prowess in front of their own supporters. Ranieri downplayed Leicester’s title hopes, but he maintained that Arsenal and Tottenham are strong favourites. The North London outfits occupy the third and fourth positions and are not too far behind. read more …
Antoine Griezmann has long been in the shadows of players like Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
He continues to do so, but there has been a substantial improvement in the form of the Atletico Madrid forward. The player recently scored his 10th goal of the campaign in the 2-0 victory against Celta de Vigo. His first campaign provided an impressive return of 22 goals in all competitions. It looks like the Frenchman may struggle to match this tally in his second season, but a slight reduction was always on the cards after an impressive debut.
Griezmann now has 10 goals in 19 appearances for the Spanish outfit just in the league. However, fans have been able to witness the best of the 24-year-old in the Champions League. He has scored an impressive four goals in the six group matches. An overall record of 15 goals in 25 appearances for the Spanish outfit is good. His firm may be a reason behind Atletico moving to the top of the table just as the winter break came upon the la Liga. Even though Barcelona have played one game less than Atletico, a two-point advantage will feel like a confidence booster for the team from Madrid. read more …