Posts Tagged ‘Aston Villa’

Football

Arsenal update: Draxler, Adler and Benteke

By Stefano on May 1st, 2013

It is a fairly quiet morning for transfer rumours today, but there are a few lingering on from yesterday that have small updates.

Firstly Julian Draxler has been rubbishing suggestions that he will move to Borussia Dortmund in the summer. With Gotze on his way to Bayern Munich Draxler was apparently being lined up as his replacement for the Champions League finalists.

Not so. Draxler was quoted as saying

“Some of the rumours have been taken for face value, which has made me sad. I can promise to all that I will not play for Borussia Dortmund.”

Meanwhile Schalke general manager Horst Heldt said it would take at least £85m to bring them to the negotiating table.

So Wenger just needs to find a spare £15 million round the back of an Emirates sofa then!? This doesn’t sound like it is going to happen now does it!

Also in Germany Hamburg keeper Rene Adler says that he is honoured to be linked with Arsenal. The German number two/three keeper says that he is staying focussed.

“I am under contract with Hamburg, but for every professional it will be a pleasure and honour to get linked with a club like this,” said Adler.

“This is flattering. It will absolutely hand me more motivation, I will not lose my focus.”

Finally, after a brilliant performance on Monday for Villa the stakes are being raised even higher over the future of Christian Benteke. The Belgian will be offered a new and much more financially rewarding contract by Paul Lambert/Randy Lerner to keep him at the Midlands club.

Whether that will be enough to see off the North London vultures – both Arsenal and Spurs are allegedly interested in the player – remains to be seen.



Football

Are Arsenal planning on raiding Aston Villa? Lowton and Benteke?

By Stefano on April 24th, 2013

Arsene Wenger faces a tricky decision about who he signs as a right back in the summer. If, as expected, Bacary Sagna returns to France, Wenger has the option of either signing a replacement for Sagna or promoting excellent English player Carl Jenkinson and looking for an understudy for him.

If it is the latter then there may be some substance to The People story that Arsenal are keeping tabs on Aston Villa full-back Matthew Lowton.

Like many Premiership clubs Arsenal have been monitoring Villa’s form with a possible bid for striker Christian Benteke in the summer in mind. If Villa don’t escape relegation then both players are likely to leave the club with a host of suitors chasing them.

Lowton has been impressive this year and, let’s face it the 23 year old ex Sheffield United man has been rather busy. Whether he would want to be Jenkinson’s understudy is another matter though.

Maybe Wenger wants to repeat the scenario he has at left back with arguably two first choice players.

As for Benteke 15 goals for a struggling team speaks for itself. Personally I think buying a striker with Premiership experience is a must for Arsenal and Benteke would be a good fit.



Football

How Aston Villa can counter Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere

By Stefano on February 23rd, 2013

Charles N’Zogbia has returned to the Aston Villa side to great effect in recent weeks, collecting three assists and one goal in five games, for a Villa side that lacked inspiration and creativity. Deployed in a ‘number ten’ position behind Christian Benteke, with Gabriel Agbonlahor and Andreas Weimann providing pace on the flanks, N’Zogbia’s direct dribbling has proved useful for connecting midfield and attack.

But few managers play their usual style at the Emirates, with many choosing to sacrifice attacking ambition in order to stiffen the backline or midfield. Paul Lambert is a serial formation switcher and a difficult manager to predict: he played two upfront at the Emirates with Norwich last season, but that was towards the end of the campaign, with Norwich’s mid-table position assured. With Villa still fighting relegation, Lambert might opt for more caution.

He’ll remember the excellent job Barry Bannan did in the first fixture at the head of the midfield triangle, playing an energetic role and pressing as soon as Arsenal’s defenders played the ball into midfield, meaning Arsene Wenger’s side struggled to get the ball forward.

The presence of Jack Wilshere, rested in that game, will make this more difficult, but also makes it imperative that Villa aren’t outnumbered in midfield.

Against an Arsenal side with three talented passers, it would be a huge risk for Lambert to field only two men in the middle. Pushing N’Zogbia wide might be an option, but three proper central midfielders makes sense for Villa this weekend.

This post courtesy of Pick Our Team is by Michael Cox. PickOurTeam is a new type of football community giving fans an opportunity to have a meaningful say on the formation and selection of their team. PickOurTeam is the voice of the fans – collecting views on who should play where and ratings on how the players, manager, and referee perform each week. Every match the findings are compiled and presented back to the fans. The article was originally posted here.

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Football

Christian Benteke’s agent has big plans for the player. Arsenal and Spurs take note

By Stefano on February 19th, 2013

There has been a bit of a buzz about the future of Aston Villa’s Christian Benteke. Now his agent seems to have poured a little more oil on that fire by suggesting that his charge is ready to take the step up to the next level.

The Mirror also suggests that Spurs are now odd-on favourite to land the player who is also being linked with Arsenal and Chelsea.

Benteke’s agent Erik Kismet : “It is normal that if you go to a club and do well, then other clubs will show an interest.

“Christian has shown that he can play in England so why not take the step up to the next level if the opportunity is there?

“At the end of the season, interested clubs will talk to Villa, but it has to be right for Villa, the buying club and Christian.

“If all three parties are agreeable, something could happen, but right now his focus is on Villa, helping them stay in the Premier League.”

Both Spurs and Arsenal are very likely to be chasing a new striker in the summer and Benteke, who has proved he can play in that arena by scoring 15 goals so far this season, will come at a premium given his record. Villa boss Paul Lambert says it will take a lot of money to prise the player away from Villa.

However if Villa don’t win that relegation battle then his exit would be a near certainty.

The player could do a great deal to endear himself to Spurs fans by scoring for Villa against Arsenal when the two clubs meet in the Premiership at The Emirates at the weekend.



Football

Christian Benteke fancies a move to Arsenal

By Stefano on February 8th, 2013

You have to feel sorry for Villa fans. They are in the midst of a desperate relegation battle, weren’t able to strengthen their squad in the window and now see others clubs circling like vultures around their star player.

Yep, The Mirror and The Star are reporting that Christian Benteke is ready to quit Aston Villa and that his preferred destination is Arsenal.

Benteke has been in scintillating form this season scoring 14 goals, and this in a team that’s not just low on confidence but really lacking forward firepower.

Arsenal have been linked with a series of strikers. The current favourite is apparently Stevan Jovetic, but David Villa is almost certainly still on the radar.

You can see why the Benteke rumours make sense in that unlike Stevan Jovetic and David Villa Benteke has already shown he capable of scoring a lot of goals in the Premiership.

He would probably cost less than the other two as well.

It sounds too like Paul Lambert is already thinking about fending off bids from rivals.

He said at the morning’s press conference

“He’s only 22 and he’s got years and years ahead of him. He’s not at his peak, but what he’s done for me and for the club is fantastic. If someone wanted to buy Christian, they’d better have a few quid in their pocket. He’s not just going to walk out of here for the value he came for (£8 million), that’s for sure.



Football

Is Micah Richards going to be Brendan Rodgers’ next big signing for Liverpool?

By Stefano on January 4th, 2013

Liverpool have already made one of the key signings of the window in snapping up Daniel Sturridge, but it seems that Brendan Rodgers’ spree isn’t going to end there.

A few papers are reporting that the Liverpool manager is back on the case renegotiating the return of Thomas Ince from Blackpool with a fee of around £5 million.

But Italian source TuttoMercato (reported here by Goal) also says that the Reds are keeping close tabs on Man City defender Micah Richards.

The England defender has only had a few opportunities at Man City this season, after injuring his knee in October, and seems to have fallen off manager Roberto Mancini’s radar. Even when he was fit, like at the end of last season, his chances were limited. Mancini has an embarrassment of riches at the back and some papers are even linking Joleon Lescott with a move away from the club possibly to Aston Villa.

Liverpool already have an England player at right back in Glenn Johnson, but Richards would be a very useful centre back for Rodgers.




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