Spainai??i??s recent victory against Luxembourg came felt like a breath of fresh after a few disastrous games. After sustaining 4 defeats in 6 games and a terrible World Cup, questions were raised about the abilities of Del Bosque as a coach and his unreasonable trust on certain players. There were doubts about the teamai??i??s adaptability and ability to cope with high-tempo counter-attacks. Many felt that the coach should give younger players a chance and let go of some of the deadwood. It seems like all the opinions havenai??i??t fallen on deaf ears as Del Bosque fielded the youngest team of his reign in a game against Luxembourg which Spain went on to win 4-0. The coach dropped Real Madrid keeper Iker Casillas, who had a disastrous game against Slovakia, in favour of the young and in-form David De Gea (23). Other youngsters such as Bartra (23), Dani Carvajal (22) and Alcacer (21) also got a chance on-field which meant the […]

England boss Roy Hodgsonai??i??s tense relationship with Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers looks set to continue in the wake of the controversy surrounding Raheem Sterlingai??i??s fitness. Roy Hodgson has risked inflaming his simmering feud with Brendan Rodgers by questioning the Liverpool managerai??i??s method of keeping Raheem Sterling fit. Rodgers revealed last month that he believes in giving players, whose primary attribute is pace, a two-day recovery period from the stresses and strains caused by the speed. However, Hodgson says there is little evidence that this program benefits the recovery of an individual. “Raheem might say it is something that is becoming ingrained in him and that he felt the need to talk about being tired more than he would normally do.” Hodgson said. “We have never had any problems with that [Liverpoolai??i??s policy] but I donai??i??t think there is a lot of medical evidence to support the two-day recovery so, if you want to, you might want to research that.” “Certainly […]

Arkadiusz Milik and substitute Sebastian Mila were on target in Polandai??i??s famous win over Germany last night. Poland defeated Germany for the first time in 19 meetings in Group D of Euro 2016 qualifiers. Germany had won 12 and drawn 6 of their previous fixtures against their opponents last night but in front a sell-out 57,000 crowd in Warsaw Poland claimed a historic win. A tight match was settled in the second half when Ajax striker Arkadiusz Milik got on the end of a great pass from Borussia Dortmund right back A?ukasz Piszczek to head home past the hapless Manuel Neuer. The Polish defence held firm and they eventually doubled their lead when Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski squared the ball for Sebastian Mila to seal a famous win. Despite admitting Germanyai??i??s poor finishing cost them the tie, Jogi Loew was reluctant to blame his players solely for the loss. “Of course we are disappointed because we lost here. But, […]

Giorgio Chiellini scored a brace for Italy and an own goal as the Azzurri survived late drama to beat Group H minnows Azerbaijan 2-1 on Friday in the Euro 2016 qualifiers. Simone Zaza and Ciro Immobile started upfront while Marco Veratti, Thiago Motta, Daniele De Rossi and Pablo Osvaldo all pulled out with injuries. Andrea Pirlo got his 113th international cap to jump to the third place in the all-time list for appearances ahead of 1982 World Cup winning captain Dino Zoff. Italy continued their winning streak under new coach Antonio Conte at the Stadio Barbera in Palermo and recorded three consecutive wins for the first time since October 2012. “In all honesty, I have little to complain about, other than the fact the players werenai??i??t determined enough in front of goal,” Conte told Rai Sport after the game. “Azerbaijan didnai??i??t have a shot other than the goal and scored out of nowhere with that bundle over the line. We […]

The visitors took a surprise lead in the first half but goals from Klass-Jan Huntelaar, Ibrahim Afellay and Robin Van Persie settled the contest late in the second half. Netherlands coach Guus Hiddink said he always felt confident that his side would secure the win against the minnows in their Euro 2016 qualifying game although they were made to work really hard for it. “We can be satisfied. The only corner they had went in. Then we had to play against a wall of players. In the first half we suffered from that.” “We stayed calm during half-time. But if we kept playing like that, we would get there eventually. It was just a matter of scoring goals. I didn’t have the feeling we would lose points tonight.” Kazakhstan took a shock lead in the first half thanks to a Renat Abdulin header from the corner but second half substitute Klass-Jan Huntelaar restored parity just after the hour mark. Hiddink […]