Posted by: Zel Ram | July 19, 2009

Valencia, Something to watch for

Now that Antonio Valencia have finally transfer to Manchester United there is something to watch for this guy.

“I owe Wigan everything. Without them, there would be no Manchester United for me. The club has been fantastic for me, and I am genuinely sad to be leaving some fantastic memories and friends behind. Of course, I am excited to be joining one of the biggest clubs in the world, but I owe it all to Wigan.”

– Luis Antonio Valencia

Luis Antonio Valencia today begins a new life as a Manchester United player, but, before looking ahead to the future, the winger was keen to pay a heartfelt tribute to former club Wigan Athletic.

The Ecuadorian signed for the Reds on Tuesday, bringing down the curtain on a three-year stay at the JJB Stadium, and he admits he is forever indebted to the Latics for giving him his break in English football.

“It is quite simple, I owe Wigan everything,” Antonio told the Wigan Evening Post. “Without them, there would be no Manchester United for me. The club has been fantastic for me, and I am genuinely sad to be leaving some fantastic memories and friends behind.

“Of course, I am excited to be joining one of the biggest clubs in the world, but I have to say I owe it all to Wigan. To Paul Jewell, Chris Hutchings and Steve Bruce, I say a massive thank you – and to the chairman Dave Whelan.

“I also want to say a big thank you to (Wigan manager) Roberto Martinez. I think I would have really enjoyed playing for him, but he has not opposed this move and I am grateful for that.”

Antonio has adjusted to the frenetic pace of Premier League football during his stay with the Latics, and he hopes to see more foreign talents following in his footsteps.

“Wigan has been a fantastic stepping stone for me, and I would urge any other players like me to come and sign for this club, because they give players like me a chance,” he said.

“They are the club who took a chance on me when I was only a young player, and who stuck by me in the early days when I was getting used to the pace and power of the Premier League.

“In return I have always given everything to Wigan so there is a big part of me that is sad to be leaving. I will always have a place in my heart for the club. Good luck to Wigan, they deserve it, and I hope they will do really well this season under Roberto Martinez.”

Posted by: Zel Ram | July 19, 2009

Valencia arrived in Reds

Antonio Valencia sign-in to join the Reds(Manchester United)

Born: 04/08/1985; Lago Agrio, Ecuador
Previous Clubs: El Nacional, Recreativo Huelva (loan), Villarreal, Wigan Athletic
International record: 34 appearances, 4 goals (for Ecuador)
Wigan Athletic record: 83 appearances, 7 goals

Discuss Antonio’s arrival on Talking Reds, the club’s official message board.

Manchester United is delighted to announce it has completed the signing of Antonio Valencia from Wigan Athletic on a four-year contract for an undisclosed fee.

The 23-year-old Ecuador international has played 34 times for his country, scoring four goals.

Sir Alex Ferguson said: “Antonio is a player we have admired for some time now, having spent the last two years in the Premier League with Wigan. I am sure his pace and ability will make a significant contribution to the team.”

Antonio Valencia said: “Joining Manchester United is a dream come true for me. I have enjoyed my time at Wigan, but I am thrilled to have the chance to challenge for the biggest honours in club football here.

“Playing in front of 76,000 fans alongside players like Wayne Rooney, Rio Ferdinand and Ryan Giggs will be an amazing experience. I can’t wait to get started.”

Posted by: Zel Ram | March 11, 2009

Cristiano Ronaldo is Happy

“If we win every game 1-0 it’s good! Sometimes it’s important to score goals but Everton are a difficult team to play against. We have to appreciate the attitude and character of the team.”

– Cristiano Ronaldo

Cristiano Ronaldo declared himself satisfied after scoring the winner against Everton – but insists all that matters is that the team keep winning.

Following his brace at West Brom on Tuesday, the winger netted his 14th goal of the season from the penalty spot on Saturday to send the Reds five points clear at the top.

“I am happy with my season, but the most important thing is the team,” Ronaldo told MUTV.”We are top, the lads are playing very well, I’ve scored a few important goals and want to carry on doing my job to help the team.

“It was very tough today. Everton had a good game at the weekend against Liverpool and we knew it was going to be difficult.

“But we played well, especially in the first half when we created a few chances and managed to score the goal. The second half was a little more difficult, with Everton just playing on the counter-attack.”

Ronaldo was not too disappointed that United failed to add to his opener and credited Everton’s resilience.

“If we win every game 1-0 it’s good!” he continued. “Sometimes it’s important to score goals but Everton are a difficult team to play against. We have to appreciate the attitude and character of the team.”

Ronaldo also reserved praise for Edwin van der Sar, who kept his 12th consecutive league clean sheet to break a 30-year-old English league record.

Ronaldo said: “It’s unbelievable! Edwin deserves it because he is a great goalkeeper and a great man who works a lot for his age! I’m really happy not just for him but for all the lads, especially the defenders who support him a lot.”

Third-placed Liverpool host second-placed Chelsea on Sunday when both sides will be fighting tooth and nail to claw the ground back on United.

“It’ll be a tough game,” Ronaldo added. “Maybe a draw is the best result, but one or both of them will definitely drop points!”

Posted by: Zel Ram | March 11, 2009

New Offer For Cristiano Ronaldo

UNITED will offer Cristiano Ronaldo a blockbuster £200,000-a-week deal to keep him at Old Trafford.

The Red Devils hope the £10.4million-a-year contract will be enough to ward off interest from Spanish giants Real Madrid.

Ronaldo still has three years left on his current £120,000-a-week arrangement but FIFA rules mean he can buy himself out of that deal at the end of next season.

It is understood Old Trafford chiefs plan to make him the Premier League’s highest paid player on a basic weekly salary of £160,000 – plus an extra £40,000 for image rights and commercial activities.

Reports in Spain have claimed Ronaldo has already verbally agreed to move to Madrid this summer.

But United boss Alex Ferguson said: “There is no question of Ronaldo leaving.

And a source close to the player told the News of the World: “Cristiano wants to clear his head of the Real Madrid move once and for all.

“When he agreed to stay at United last summer he thought it would be just for one more year.

“But now he seems to be setting his mind on the long term because he realises he can fulfil all his ambitions at Old Trafford.”

The new deal would tie 23-year-old Ronaldo to the Premier League and European champions until 2014.

Posted by: Zel Ram | March 11, 2009

Alex Ferguson Leaving the Old trafford ???

ALEX FERGUSON says he is playing in the penalty shootout of his career — and doesn’t know when it will end.

The godfather of all Premier League bosses is well into his 68th year with the fierce determination which has helped shape his legend refusing to wilter and disappear.

This season’s Quintuple charge is a case in point. All those titles and gongs from the past are in the bag but still he wants more. And more. And more.

The current crop of Red Devils stars is arguably his greatest ever. A side dripping with world-class performers who would walk into any team in the world. A squad to die for.

Fergie is loving every minute but the Scottish managerial master is a realist, too. He knows time is not on his side, that he can’t stay in charge at Old Trafford for ever. There are not too many seasons left in the tank.

His departure from football will leave a seismic hole in the fabric of the beautiful game which will be felt the world over.

And in one of his most forthright and emotional interviews, the United boss said: “When I reached 60, I asked myself the question. I almost left.

“But I quickly realised, with my family, that it was a mistake. Today, I fear the idea of retiring.

“I have been on the train for so long that when I get off I fear my system will collapse.

“I have decided not to ask myself the question any more.

“Three things can make me stop. 1. My health. 2. If I don’t take pleasure any more. 3. If I don’t have the strength for new challenges any more.

“Each summer, I have a look at those three things. I go to my doctor first. I had a pacemaker set up four or five years ago.

“Today, I am playing the penalty shoot-out of my managerial career. I know that. The rest is decided between me and me.

“I see my doctor every summer. He says ‘boss, you are 67. You will have more and more back pains. Getting up in the morning sometimes won’t be easy.’

“This is the penalty shootout.”

Over the years, Ferguson has proved he is master of all managerial trades. Mind games, motivation, tactical masterclasses. You name it, he’s nailed it.

But it is his ability to man-manage a team of stars and make them play and sweat blood for the badge which sets him apart.

He digs deep into the psyche of players. Fergie explained: “I like to remind them of their roots, so they remember where their parents and grandparents come from.

“I want them to think of the history of their family. To carry the values of their class. Being from the working class today is facing a world full of technology and comfort that you can’t afford.

“The players can afford everything but I make sure they keep an ethos. And that starts by working hard.

“I try to touch the players in their heart. I tell them that nobody will knock on their door to offer them a trophy.

“That only work and solidarity will reward them. Of course you need technique, work and team spirit but you also need the sense of sacrifice. Bryan Robson was a complete and perfect example. To win, you need eight players in the rhythm and the good spirit. Then, they can carry the other three. Less than eight, it’s tough.

“I like to see a part of my personality in the players. Every manager is like that. It’s reassuring.

“At Aberdeen the players looked so much like me. Here, it’s in Bryan Robson that I found me the most. He was a manager playing football. What intelligence.

“It’s rare that players respect my tactical wishes throughout the heat of the game.

“It’s why I have always taken young players and never neglected the local players. So they can understand the United challenge.

“I prefer a player who can have a bad day but works like a madman more than a naturally-gifted player. I will give more time to the first one to improve because I know he will try and try. Roy Keane was like that. He maybe didn’t have the potential but he became an absolute Manchester United player.

“He strangled the life out of his opponents. He raised his game. Cristiano Ronaldo is another example. He had talents but above that I believed in his mental strength.

“In three or four years, he has become the best player in the world. Their success is the success of a club that has given them the right values.”

Fergie, speaking to L’Equipe sports magazine, has always loved a battle but his one with Real Madrid last summer over their pursuit of Ronaldo will go down as one of his finest. He said: “First, you have to listen to the will of the player.

“If two clubs came to offer £100million for Cristiano and Cristiano wants to go to Madrid, do you think I could make him sign for the other club? You think I could go against his wishes? All I can do is advise him. But all this makes sense only if we are ready to sell Cristiano for £100m.

“We have already sold players to Madrid: Heinze, Beckham, Van Nistelrooy. We sold them those players because we wanted to. We didn’t sell Cristiano because we didn’t want to. It’s just a business question, not an ethical question.

“I won’t let my personal feelings influence my decision making.”

That decision making included signing keeper Edwin van der Sar from Fulham four years ago.

Fergie added: “At the end of January, something interesting happened with Van der Sar. When he beat the unbeaten record for a goalkeeper, he absolutely wanted to get the match ball.

“And he was so excited that in the dressing room he went and kissed each of his team-mates.

“At 38, achieving that still meant a lot to him. This made me proud. It means that maybe I have brought something to my players.

“I am like the keeper of the temple. For 23 years, it has been my motto to never let the perfectionism go.”

It’s a motto he is taking into his very own penalty shootout.

Posted by: Zel Ram | March 11, 2009

Cristiano Ronaldo is the BEST

ALEX FERGUSON admits Cristiano Ronaldo does have an arrogant streak — just like Manchester United legend George Best.

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger said this week Red Devils ace Ronaldo, 24, gets a kicking because of his ‘arrogance and class’.

Old Trafford gaffer Fergie agreed and said the likes of Best, Johann Cruyff, Diego Maradona and Pele were exactly the same.

He said: “All the great players have a touch of ‘nice arrogance’ — a belief in themselves.

“That is a vein that courses through all the great players and they get treatment from defenders.

“Best got it and if you remember the tackles the Brazilians gave Cruyff in the 1974 World Cup…

“I don’t see why I should restrain Cristiano. I enjoy watching it — I paid over £10million for it.

“When a player expresses himself in such an entertaining way defenders don’t enjoy it.

“What Arsene said is sometimes it appears as arrogance and that’s different. I can understand what he’s saying.”

Posted by: Zel Ram | March 11, 2009

Manchester United Alive !!!

Manchester United Vs Fullham

Posted by: Zel Ram | March 11, 2009

More Trophies for Manchester United

United’s march towards a quintet of trophies continued apace at Craven Cottage as Carlos Tevez helped sweep aside Fulham 4-0 and earn a place in the FA Cup semi-finals.

Tevez scored twice before half-time and his double helped explain why Sir Alex Ferguson’s men might lift five bits of silverware this season – nine of his 12 goals have come in cups.

Wayne Rooney added another just after the break to end any hopes Fulham had of a comeback in a breathless quarter-final with Ji-sung Park adding a fourth before full-time.

United have secured the World Club Cup and the Carling Cup already, are in control in the Barclays Premier League and have reached the last four of the FA Cup for a record 26th time. The focus now turns to the Champions League clash against Inter Milan on Wednesday.

Victory came against a Fulham side who were in decent form and confident mood – despite their midweek defeat by Hull – but Roy Hodgson’s men simply had no answer to United’s relentless attacks.

Fulham’s task was to end any hopes of a clean sweep of trophies and to defy history as they had not beaten United at home since 1964.

That was in the era when George Best was on the flanks for United, with the current equivalent being Cristiano Ronaldo – but Ferguson rested the Portugal winger.

Ronaldo had trained all week but had been involved in United’s recent busy schedule and Ferguson had plenty of options, naming Dimitar Berbatov on the bench and bringing in Anderson and Tevez.

United gave the hosts a warning as early as the third minute after Brede Hangeland carelessly gave the ball away.

Rooney stabbed the ball to Tevez and his shot was saved at full stretch by Mark Schwarzer, with John Pantsil beating Rooney to the rebound.

Fulham may have been ruthlessly exposed by United but it was not one-way traffic, the hosts had a number of meaningful attacks in a fast-paced cup tie.

In the 13th minute they showed their attacking threat when Simon Davies lofted a ball over the top. Andrew Johnson got his toe on the ball from the edge of the area to wrong-foot Edwin van der Sar, with Nemanja Vidic required to race back and clear before it trickled over the line.

Van der Sar plucked Clint Dempsey’s header from under the crossbar then Bobby Zamora, who had provided the cross for the American, fired over from the edge of the area.

Fulham’s good start was undone in the 20th minute when United took the lead. Anderson’s corner was flicked on by Rooney and Tevez steered his header between the post and Paul Konchesky.

Rooney had set up the opener and he was trying his hardest to add a second, including a 50-yard effort that went just over the bar.

The England striker was unfortunate to be flagged offside when he rounded Schwarzer and tucked the ball home, then he struck the post when Park crossed from the right flank.

It was Tevez who added the second with a stunning effort. The Argentina forward picked the ball up on the halfway line, headed towards goal and cut inside before finding the top corner with a fearsome strike in the 35th minute.

It could have been different if Fulham had been awarded a penalty when Zamora appeared to have his shirt pulled by John O’Shea, and they also had a chance when Rio Ferdinand blocked bravely after Johnson raced through.

Ferdinand was taken off at the break after appearing to pick up a knock but United were three goals ahead within five minutes of the restart.

Dickson Etuhu’s poor clearance eventually found its way to Rooney, who curled an effort from 20 yards that nestled in the bottom corner.

Rooney had second-half tussles with Dempsey and Etuhu that almost boiled over – he was taken off in the 64th minute, ensuring there would be no needless bookings.

Tevez shot into the side-netting with his attempt for a hat-trick but it was Park who added the fourth, in the 81st minute, when he latched onto a poor ball from Zoltan Gera before racing into the area and finishing confidently.

Scoring Summary
Fulham Manchester United
Carlos Tevez (20)
Carlos Tevez (35)
Wayne Rooney (50)
Ji-Sung Park (81)
Match Stats
Fulham Manchester United
Shots (on Goal) 4(1) 16(11)
Fouls 13 5
Corner Kicks 4 6
Offsides 1 1
Time of Possession 41% 59%
Yellow Cards 2 0
Red Cards 0 0
Saves 7 1
Match Information
Stadium: Craven Cottage, England
Attendance: 24,662
Match Time: 17:15 UK
Official(s):
M Dean (Referee)
Teams
Fulham Manchester United
Mark Schwarzer Edwin van der Sar
John Pantsil 22 John O’Shea
Brede Hangeland Rio Ferdinand
18 Aaron Hughes 15 Nemanja Vidic
Paul Konchesky Patrice Evra
25 Simon Davies 24 Darren Fletcher
20 Dickson Etuhu 16 Michael Carrick
13 Danny Murphy Anderson
23 Clint Dempsey 13 Ji-Sung Park
Bobby Zamora 10 Wayne Rooney
Andrew Johnson 32 Carlos Tevez
Substitutes
19 Pascal Zuberbuhler Ben Foster 12
22 Fredrik Stoor Jonathan Evans 23
33 Toni Kallio Richard Eckersley 42
11 Zoltan Gera Ryan Giggs 11
16 Olivier Dacourt Paul Scholes 18
10 Erik Nevland Dimitar Berbatov 9
15 Diomansy Kamara Danny Welbeck 19
Substitutions
Olivier Dacourt for Danny Murphy (57) Jonathan Evans for Rio Ferdinand (46)
Diomansy Kamara for Andrew Johnson (60) Richard Eckersley for John O’Shea (52)
Zoltan Gera for Bobby Zamora (67) Danny Welbeck for Wayne Rooney (64)
Yellow Cards
John Pantsil (68)
Olivier Dacourt (79)

Posted by: Zel Ram | March 11, 2009

New Manager for ManUTD

Inter Milan boss Jose Mourinho has, in true style, stirred the pot ahead of his team’s Champions League second round return leg against Manchester United on Wednesday by saying he could take over as manager at Old Trafford when Sir Alex Ferguson finally decides to retire. The Portuguese memorably guided Porto to a two-legged victory over United at the same stage in 2004, when a 1-1 draw in Manchester was enough to see his side through.

Mourinho also claimed he could be the next United boss, but he also believes the race for the Premier League title would be a tighter affair if he was still managing in England.

“If you want me to rule out ever being Manchester United manager I can’t,” he told the News of the World.

“Special clubs need special managers so in theory it could work, but nobody knows what the future is in football.

“The England national team wanted me as coach and that is the biggest job in England, so I am sure when Sir Alex retires they will look at the best managers in the world and I certainly fall into the category.”

Mourinho believes things would be different on the domestic scene for Manchester United if he wasn’t sacked as Chelsea boss in September 2007.

He added: “Yes, Manchester United are the best team in England but you have to ask how good has the Premier League been since I left?

“Manchester United have won it with ease since I have gone because no manager has put a team together that can rival them.

“But my teams always rival Manchester United and Sir Alex knows that.

“They are a great team but if I was at a top club in England I think the title race might have been a lot closer this year.”

Mourinho also had some disparaging words for the teams trailing in United’s wake, adding he would be “embarrassed” to be in their current position.

“Chelsea have had no stability, Arsenal are nowhere and Liverpool threatened but I don’t think anybody really thought they were ever going to win it,” he said.

“I would not allow a team of mine to be so far behind. It is embarrassing in March.

“Manchester United have a great squad but are their players really that much better than Chelsea’s or Liverpool’s? I don’t think so.

“So something else must be the problem and somebody has to take responsibility for that.

“I beat Manchester United with Chelsea and Porto. Now I am ready to beat them with Inter.

“I feel confident that if I had been at one of the big four clubs I would be closer or maybe even above Manchester United.”

Posted by: Zel Ram | January 7, 2009

Cristiano Ronaldo, Manchester United Forever

The Sexiest Man

The Sexiest Man

United midfielder Cristiano Ronaldo insists continued speculation linking him with a move to Real Madrid is not true, after further reports that he has already signed for the Spanish champions.
Ronaldo’s future was front page news all summer and is set to be again. (GettyImages)

Ronaldo dazzled for United last season, scoring 42 goals in all competitions as the Red Devils won the Premier League and the UEFA Champions League and Real director Pedro Trapote was quoted in December claiming that his club have a deal in place to sign the Ballon D’Or winner at the end of this season.

Ronaldo, though, has reiterated that the claim is false, telling United’s official website: “There’s always speculation, not just about me, but about the future of players all around the world.

“People were speaking about me this summer but that was normal because of what I did during the season.

“What people are saying now (the recent speculation about an agreement with Real Madrid) is not true.

“Who says that is a liar because I am happy at the club, I want to stay here. I feel at home here. I feel very happy here.”

Meanwhile, Ronaldo admits he felt under pressure to impress after a summer of rumours, but was not worried that fans would turn against him.

“I think the people don’t forget quickly what you do for the club,” he added. “When I arrived at the stadium, to play (my first game of this season) against Villarreal, I felt a little bit of pressure.

“But the fans were very good and this is why I feel the Manchester United supporters are amazing.

“I love the fans because they have been brilliant with me, not just this season but every season. Like I said before, I feel at home in Manchester.”

Cristiano Ronaldo Stay in Manchester

he moody Portugal winger, 23, said: “I want to stay here. I feel at home here. I feel very happy here.”

But before boss Fergie starts popping the champagne he should be warned that only one in four people actually stick to their New Year resolutions.

And Ronaldo is still very much a target for Real Madrid.

There have even been claims that the Spaniards already have a deal to sign him in the summer.

Ron tried to engineer a move to Real last year and accused United of treating him like a ‘slave’.

But he insists the disruption was down to the media. He said: “There’s always speculation, not just about me but about the future of players all around the world.

“People were speaking about me this summer and what people are saying now is not true. Who says that is a liar. I want to stay here.”

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