I have a theory as to one reason (of many) the England National Team tends to underperform in major tournaments: the players all play in the same league. Every England international plays in the Premier League. One might argue this breeds familiarity and is therefore good for the national team, but I think it leads to a lack of stylistic variety in the team and makes the payer pool stagnant. It's basically like inbreeding, is what I'm saying.
Alexis Sanchez figures to be one of the world's most targeted players in this summer's transfer window. The 28-year-old forward scored 29 goals in 50 appearances with Arsenal this campaign, and it was often clear that he was shouldering the load when the Gunners were struggling.
Alexis Sanchez for Arsenal in the Premier League 2016/17:
Most take-ons (109)
Most goals (24)
Most assists (10)
Most through balls (9)
Relegation is a blessing and a curse in itself. For the clubs, it means a substantial loss of television revenue and can hinder growth for years to come. For the best players on relegated teams, it acts as a restart. Premier League clubs sign the players who are eager to stay at the top level. We should expect to see the following players in the Premier League next season:
Hull City: Andrew Robertson, Harry Maguire, Sam Clucas
With European league seasons winding down, summer transfer speculation has begun in earnest with what you'd expect:
You might think paying €45 million for a 16-year-old without a first-team appearance to his name is excessive. You might be correct. In the case of Vinicius Jr., though, you just might be incorrect.
Real Madrid have reportedly had a €45 million bid accepted by Vinicius's club, Flamengo, although the move cannot be finalized until Vinicius turns 18, in July of next year.
Lionel Messi has scored 51 goals in 49 games this season for Barcelona. So, it's no wonder that club executives are in a hurry to get negotiations over with and to get Messi's contract finalized.
It appears today that the club and Messi's agents may be close to a deal. Only a day after we reported that Messi's camp rejected Barcelona's initial offer, Barcelona VP Jordi Mestre said "it won't be long" before Lionel Messi signs a new contract with FC Barcelona.
After over two decades of flinging himself at the ball in the blue of Chelsea and winning a lot of trophies, John Terry has announced his decision to leave the club at the end of the season. Terry is synonymous with Chelsea’s rise to English and continental dominance as well providing that bit of assholery that every successful club needs.
JT, as he’s called by those in the know, isn’t done defending yet, though. His high and tight haircut and high socks could be making their way to resolutely defending a club near you.
Didier Drogba has officially joined USL side Phoenix Rising as a player and (really) owner. Drogba's minority ownership stake in the team will allow him to transition to a front office role after playing this season. He will join former Chelsea teammate Shaun Wright-Phillips in Phoenix.
Marta, the five-time FIFA World Player of the Year, has joined the Orlando Pride on a two-year contract with an option for a third year. With the possibility of Alex Morgan’s short-term loan deal at Lyon running through June (Lyon will have to navigate a Champions League semifinal against Carli Lloyd’s Manchester City to make that a reality) the Orlando Pride have moved quickly to add more star power.
21-year-old Pachuca and Mexican international Hirving “Chucky” Lozano has long been a subject of interest for European clubs. The winger has already appeared in over 100 Liga MX matches for his club, and he’s become a regular for El Tri.
Lozano’s form in the 2016 Apertura season, during which he scored seven goals and helped Pachuca finish in second during the regular season, saw him linked with Benfica, Ajax and PSV during the January transfer window.