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Thread: Latest Transfer Update at 20-05-2012

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    Arrow Latest Transfer Update at 20-05-2012

    Latest Transfer Update at 20-05-2012

    Roberto Di Matteo: 'I'm enjoying this moment'

    DI MATTEO JUST WANTS TO ENJOY SUCCESS

    Roberto Di Matteo refused to discuss his future after Chelsea won the Champions League with a 4-3 victory on penalties over Bayern Munich.
    The match finished 1-1 after extra-time but the Blues were able to battle back after trailing 3-1 in the shoot-out as Didier Drogba scored the winning spot-kick.


    Thomas Muller had earlier put Bayern ahead before Drogba's late equaliser forced extra-time.
    Di Matteo has been Chelsea's interim-manager since Andre Villas-Boas departed but he only wanted to enjoy the moment after winning European club football's top competition.
    He told ITV1: "I'm enjoying this moment and I'd just like to go out and celebrate with the players.
    "I won't talk about it now. I just want to enjoy the moment."


    The Italian hailed his team's spirit, saying: "We have a group of players that have a big heart, passion, motivation and desire.
    "That was the only way to be able to achieve this trophy.
    "It's been an immense effort by the whole group - staff, players - and we are very happy tonight."
    Asked whether he had doubts when Bayern took a late lead, Di Matteo said: "Bayern is a good team and when they scored there was not much time left.


    "Games like this need passion and players who rise to the occasion.
    "We've got a lot of players like that, who have done it before and did it against today."
    As for Drogba, who joined Chelsea from Marseille eight years ago, Di Matteo said: "He's been incredible for this club.
    "He scored a fantastic goal tonight to keep us in the game, then the winning penalty as well."
    Di Matteo took over from Villas-Boas at the start of March, and said: "It's been an incredible three months, demanding and challenging for everybody."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-05-2012

    Jupp Heynckes has plenty to think about.

    HEYNCKES: DI MATTEO DESERVES TO STAY

    Bayern Munich coach Jupp Heynckes has called on Roman Abramovich to give Roberto Di Matteo a three-year contract after Chelsea secured Champions League glory for the first time in their history.
    After presiding over a startling upturn in fortunes following Andre Villas-Boas' dismissal in February, Di Matteo still doesn't know if he is going to get the job on a permanent basis.


    Heynckes sees no reason for further delay.
    "I congratulate Chelsea on their victory," said Heynckes.
    "If you wish me to say something about Roberto di Matteo it is that Chelsea should give him a three-year contract."
    Heynckes admitted his side had no-one to blame but themselves after dominating throughout the 120 minutes.
    However, after taking the lead through Thomas Muller with just eight minutes remaining, Bayern allowed Didier Drogba to level in the final minute.

    Then, after Arjen Robben had a penalty saved by Petr Cech in extra-time, the customary German efficiency in shoot-out situations failed them as Drogba scored the winning spot-kick to secure a 4-3 triumph.
    "Chelsea played the way we thought," said Heynckes.
    "We must blame ourselves for having so many goalscoring opportunities without being able to score until the 83rd minute."
    Heynckes also confirmed he expected Franck Ribery to shrug off the injury that he sustained in a tackle by Drogba that earned Bayern their extra-time penalty.


    The Bayern coach also cleared Robben of any responsibility, the Dutchman failing to take one of his side's five penalties following his earlier failure.
    "You can understand if he didn't score the penalty in extra-time that he may have lost some self-confidence to participate in the penalty shoot-out," said Heynckes.
    "That is quite easy to see."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-05-2012

    Fabio Capello: No contact with Chelsea

    CAPELLO: NO CHELSEA CONTACT

    Fabio Capello has played down speculation he could become Chelsea's new manager.
    Former England boss Capello attended the Champions League final between Chelsea and Bayern Munich, where he was seen having a pitchside conversation with suspended Blues captain John Terry.
    The Italian has been linked with the job at Stamford Bridge, which Roberto Di Matteo has held on an interim basis since Andre Villas-Boas was sacked in early March.


    However Capello told Italian TV station Sky Sport24: "There has been no contact between me and Chelsea."
    Capello, 65, has won league titles with AC Milan, Real Madrid, Roma and Juventus, and led England from the start of 2008 until February of this year, when he resigned after the Football Association removed the captaincy from Terry.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-05-2012

    Gordon Greer: Going nowhere

    POYET: GREER IS NOT FOR SALE

    Brighton manager Gus Poyet insists Gordon Greer is not for sale after Barnsley made a bid for the club's captain.
    Greer joined Brighton on a three-year contract from Swindon Town in 2010 and he has made over 80 appearances for the club.
    His only goal for the Seagulls came against Barnsley last November and he has reportedly been the subject of an offer under 100,000 from the Tykes.


    However, Poyet has dismissed the bid and has no plans to part with Greer unless an 'incredible' offer is received for the 31-year-old.
    "We are not surprised by anything but it is not an issue, it's not our problem because he is not for sale," Poyet told The Argus.
    "We can't even talk about it until something massive comes in for someone, something that is incredible and we cannot reject.
    "But he is the captain of the football club so it would take something incredible for us to consider."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-05-2012

    Roberto Di Matteo: Not sure what future will hold

    DI MATTEO DISMISSES TALK OF FUTURE

    Roberto Di Matteo has insisted keeping his job was the furthest thing from his mind ahead of Chelsea's Champions League final against Bayern Munich.
    Interim Blues boss Di Matteo will go into the biggest match of his life on Saturday knowing it is currently set to be his last game in charge, regardless of the result.
    Opposite number Jupp Heynckes earlier summed up the sense of incredulity that Chelsea could dispense with the man who had rescued their season when he urged Roman Abramovich to sign the Italian up.
    But Di Matteo said he had not even spoken to Blues owner Abramovich about the prospect of being handed the reins full-time.
    "We haven't had time, or it wasn't relevant, to have that conversation," he said.
    "We're all focusing on being successful."


    He added: "I don't know what the future will hold. I'm entirely focused on this game."
    Di Matteo is already a Chelsea favourite thanks to his exploits as a player, as well as this season's FA Cup triumph, but masterminding a victory on Saturday would top anything he has achieved.
    He said: "I'm not thinking me personally. I try to think about the team, the group. I feel responsible about the club as well.
    "Maybe it's a bit unselfish, but that's the way I think."
    However, Di Matteo admitted he could have never envisaged what was to come when he began picking up the pieces of the doomed Andre Villas-Boas regime.


    He said: "What happened to me was unexpected. I do believe that, to have a history and a legacy at a club, it's important to connect everyone to the supporters and people working in the club.
    "You never know, but another ex-player could be in charge of Chelsea Football Club in the future."
    Frank Lampard, who will captain Chelsea on Saturday night, was asked whether he and other senior players would lobby Abramovich to keep Di Matteo on.
    "People think that we ring up the owner now and again and decide who comes and who'll be sacked," Lampard said.


    "That's not how it works at this club. It shouldn't be like that at any club.
    "As a player, you do your best for the club. A decision like that is taken out of your hands.
    "If you start thinking like that, you'll take your eyes off the ball.
    "I won't think like that. But if we win, I'll be really happy for the manager."
    The midfielder nevertheless praised the impact Di Matteo had made.
    "He's been very clever in how he's managed the situation," he said.
    "We were struggling for confidence on the pitch and, rather come in and make drastic changes, he spoke to everyone individually and created confidence in the group.


    "We got wins, the Napoli game changed everything and from then on, quietly, he's done a perfect job.
    "If anyone deserves to win this game, it's him."
    Asked if it was easier for Chelsea to win the Champions League or for him to keep his job, Di Matteo said: "It'll be difficult to win tomorrow because Bayern Munich are a fantastic team.
    "The rest will sort itself out."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-05-2012

    Roberto Di Matteo: Champions League winner

    GOURLAY HAILS DI MATTEO'S TURNAROUND

    Chelsea chief executive Ron Gourlay has hailed the "phenomenal turnaround" effected by interim manager Roberto Di Matteo but stopped short of pledging the job to him on a permanent basis.
    Di Matteo's transformation of the club since succeeding Andre Villas-Boas was completed on Saturday night when the Blues beat Bayern Munich on penalties to win the Champions League for the first time in their history.
    Owner Roman Abramovich's pursuit of the biggest prize has seen him spend around 1billion and go through seven permanent managers before replacing Villas-Boas with Di Matteo in March.
    The team's improvement since has been astonishing and Gourlay told Sky Sports News: "It's been an incredible few months and a great ending with winning the trophy.


    "It's been an up-and-down season. We started reasonably well but we had a bad period around November, December, January.
    "The performances and results weren't there so we had to make the change, we brought Robbie in as interim manager until the end of the season and we've seen a phenomenal change and a run of results which finished with winning the Champions League.
    "There's a number of things we've got to look at and we'll review where we are and take it from there, but it's a phenomenal turnaround really."
    Chairman Bruce Buck assured Di Matteo of "serious consideration" when a decision is made on a permanent successor to Villas-Boas.


    He said: "He's done an amazing job, Robbie, he's enabled the players to get back the confidence they used to have and he's really got the players performing.
    "We've put (managerial speculation) aside for the last six or eight weeks, concentrating on Barcelona, the FA Cup and Bayern Munich, but I think now we have to sit down and figure that out.
    "Roberto is certainly in the mix, he's done a great job and has to have serious consideration."
    Adding that the Italian will discover his fate "sooner rather than later", Buck said: "We really need to get the new manager on board before we can start talking about (signing) players."

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-05-2012

    Didier Drogba soaks up the celebrations

    DROGBA SET FOR CHELSEA TALKS

    Didier Drogba will hold talks with Chelsea next week after his heroics in the Champions League final success on Saturday.
    The 34-year-old scored a late equaliser against Bayern Munich to take the game to extra-time before firing home the winning penalty in the shoot-out.
    But rumours persist that the Ivory Coast international is set to embark on a new chapter in his career by heading for China in the summer.
    And Drogba was unwilling to dampen speculation regarding his exit amid the euphoria of victory in Munich.
    Asked whether the decisive penalty was his last kick for the club, Drogba said: "It was the last kick of the season. You do not make decisions in emotional moments like this."


    Drogba will sit down with club officials next week to decide if there is a future for him at Stamford Bridge. But for the moment, he is keen to stress the focus is on what Chelsea have achieved.
    "I don't talk about the future," he added. "The most important thing is what we achieved."
    Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck praised Drogba's contribution but was rather more cautious when it came to discussing the player's future at the club.


    "Didier is a big-match player and he did it once again," he told Sky Sports. "He's a good guy and a great player.
    "Ron Gourlay (Chelsea chief executive) is going to sit down with his agent this week and we'll see where it goes.
    "I think we have to do what's best for Chelsea Football Club and Didier has to do what's best for him.
    "And we'll just see how the discussions go."
    Drogba joined the Blues in 2004 from Marseille and has scored more than 150 goals for the club in eight seasons.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-05-2012

    Frank Lampard kisses the trophy

    LAMPARD - TEAMS ALWAYS CHANGING

    Frank Lampard insisted Champions League glory should not spell the end of an era at Chelsea after finally getting his hands on the biggest prize in club football.
    Lampard and the rest of the Blues' so-called 'old guard' defied the critics once again with another epic backs-to-the-wall victory in the final against Bayern Munich.
    The match was billed as a last hurrah for the likes of Lampard and matchwinner Didier Drogba amid speculation of a mass clearout at Stamford Bridge.
    But Lampard claimed there was no reason why it should herald a break-up of the squad that have been together for most of the past decade.
    "Teams are always changing, but why should we stop now?" said Lampard, the first man to captain Chelsea to the Champions League.
    "We want to carry on, move forwards. We've won the FA Cup and now the Champions League and the determination and spirit we have shown, it's been fantastic."


    Lampard's days at Chelsea looked numbered three months ago after a falling out with then manager Andre Villas-Boas, who appeared determined to phase out their older players.
    Caretaker-boss Roberto Di Matteo's decision to embrace them paid off spectacularly as they delivered the greatest moment in the club's history.
    Lampard said: "The key players have been there a long time and we want to win, we are determined to win, in the dressing room we have a tough group.
    "We struggled earlier in the season, confidence was low, but there is a real determination here, and when times are hard, we dig in.
    "If you had asked me three months ago if we would win this competition, I would have laughed. But we have done."
    Lampard, part of the previous eight failed attempts to win the Champions League, added: "It's the best footballing night of my life - the hour we spent on the pitch with the fans afterwards.


    "I've been here 11 years and I've been waiting for this baby for a long time. I'm pleased we haven't won it before, because it feels even more special.
    "That might sound stupid but, to wait so long and to do it the way we did with the season we've had, the spirit in the team - amazing."
    Lampard admitted he thought Chelsea's luck had run out when they fell behind in the final - but had no doubts they would win the penalty shootout.
    "I admit when we were trailing 1-0 with about a minute left, I wasn't so sure," said Lampard, part of the side beaten on penalties in Moscow in the 2008 final.
    "Once it went to penalties, I thought there was no way we were going to lose. I thought, 'We are going to win this'.
    "It wasn't going to be a repeat of Moscow, we couldn't have stood that again."
    Drogba was the matchwinner from the spot with what could be his final kick in a Chelsea shirt.
    Lampard: "People talk about whether this is his last game for Chelsea, but he has been an absolute hero for this club.
    "People talk about (Thierry) Henry, (Wayne) Rooney, the great strikers, but he is right up there. People that score in finals and in the big games, he is right up there."


    Some branded Chelsea lucky to have even reached the Champions League final this season, let alone won it.
    "Maybe we've made our own luck," Lampard said.
    "There are other times when we deserved more than we've got. We dug in and we didn't play beautiful football but we played spirited football that no-one can undermine."
    He added: "What more do you expect from this team this year?"

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-05-2012

    Michael Owen: Could interest Stoke

    STOKE CONSIDER MICHAEL OWEN MOVE

    Stoke chairman Peter Coates says manager Tony Pulis could be interested in taking Michael Owen to the Britannia Stadium on a free transfer.
    The Potters were keen on signing the 32-year-old before he joined Manchester United on a free transfer from Newcastle three seasons ago.
    Owen confirmed earlier in the week that he was not being offered a new contract at Old Trafford, but expressed his determination to continue his playing career at Premier League level.
    He has ruled out dropping down to the Championship and Stoke could offer the former Liverpool forward the chance to stay in the top flight.
    Stoke owner Coates would not be surprised if Pulis told him Owen was on his list of transfer targets when he returned from his post-season holiday.


    Coates told The Sentinel: "Tony is away at the moment, but that is one we could discuss when he gets back. He was interested in him previously.
    "Michael Owen has been a fantastic player and I can see why Tony might be interested. But that will be very much a judgement for the management to make."
    Owen scored 17 goals in 52 appearances for United but featured only four times in 2011/12 before suffering a thigh injury in November that sidelined him for the rest of the season.

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    Re: Latest Transfer Update at 20-05-2012

    Torres: Admits his time at Chelsea has been tough

    TORRES SEEKS CHELSEA TALKS

    Fernando Torres has cast serious doubt over whether his long-term future lies at Chelsea after calling for clear-the-air talks with the club's hierarchy over what his role will be next season.
    In a surprisingly candid interview with Guillem Balague, Torres has wasted little time in expressing his disappointment at missing out on a starting place in the Chelsea side that won the Champions League, going on to claim for much of his time in West London he has felt 'lost' and may even have 'given up' were it not for the support he has received from those close to him.
    The greatest day in Chelsea's history saw them defy the odds once more in the Champions League in beating hosts Bayern Munich on penalties to claim what had become a Holy Grail for Blues owner Roman Abramovich.


    Torres felt his improved form over the past month would earn him a starting spot but Roberto Di Matteo elected to go with Didier Drogba, who vindicated his manager's faith by scoring Chelsea's leveller before netting the winning penalty in the shoot-out after the two sides drew 1-1 after extra-time.
    The Chelsea squad enjoying a victory parade throughout the capital on Sunday but for Torres any delight over claiming Europe's premier trophy has been tempered somewhat by the fact he played only a minimal role.
    Torres concedes he feels let down by how things have transpired at Chelsea since joining them in January 2011 for a record 50million fee and it is a situation he is determined to rectify as soon as possible.
    Torres told Sky Sports' Balague on his website www.guillembalague.com: "It's contradictory because I feel like I'm at a peak moment in my career, with more desire and hunger than I've felt in a long time but I've had to spend the final on the bench. It was a huge disappointment when I saw the line-up, perhaps the biggest in my life.


    "I thought I would play in this game and I couldn't imagine not doing so. But in the end I could participate and offer the team something. I'm really happy.
    "This season I have felt things that I never had before. I've felt like they treated me in a way that I didn't expect. Not in the way that was spoken of when they signed me. We've had a lot of talks and we'll talk about my future.
    "I want them to tell me what is going to happen in the future. Football has been fair on us, on me.


    "Now I do feel like football is worth it but I've been through a difficult time. The worst in my career. I don't want that again. There's been many times when I've felt lost, I wasn't sure what to do. I felt like I didn't know where I belonged.
    "I'm eternally grateful to my family who have been by my side and also for the support of the owners who have stuck by me. And especially to the fans, if it hadn't been for them this season I would have given up."
    Although Chelsea have yet to indicate whether they will reward Di Matteo for guiding them to FA Cup and Champions League glory with a permanent deal, Torres seems in no mood to wait to learn of what he can expect from the club.
    "I need the club to tell me what is going to happen and what sort of role I will have within the team, what my duties are, what the club expects of me," he concluded. And then judge whether it is worth it."


    Prior to the penalty shoot-out Torres was seen to be in heated discussion with Di Matteo, who elected against using the Spaniard as one of his five designated takers.
    Gary Cahill has since revealed he was next on the list were the shoot-out to go to sudden death, but it is Balague's understanding Torres was keen to step up and play his part.

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