Thursday, December 21 2017

Olivier Giroud Suffers Hamstring Injury But Arsenal Ease Past West Ham 1:0


It was a day when Arsène Wenger was left with a specific regret. Olivier Giroud pulled up at the 76th minute and if the Arsenal striker shot his hands back to the hamstring on his right leg, it didn't look good. Wenger indicated the forward could be out for three weeks in other words, the whole of this congested festive programme. It was an event when Arsenal got the job done. It wasn't pretty and the headline statistic revealed there was just 1 shot on goal throughout the game. It was a concerted effort from Danny Welbeck entirely in keeping with the general tone but it made the difference. David Moyes said that "you certainly would not call it an Arsenal target" but nobody in red was whining, least of all Welbeck.

The West Ham United manager bemoaned the distance that Mathieu Debuchy was permitted to see in the inside-right station and when he led Francis Coquelin's chipped ball across to the danger zone, Welbeck jumped between Winston Reid and James Collins. Moyes couldn't understand why neither of his defenders managed to clear, and the ball broke kindly for Welbeck. From close selection and without creating a clean contact he bundled it beyond Joe Hart. Arsenal has bigger fish to fry and the proof was supplied by Wenger's decision to provide the night off to each member of his beginning line-up from Saturday's Premier League win over Newcastle United. agen sbobet terpercaya

But after the first whistle had gone with this Carabao Cup quarter-final Wenger wanted to advance just as much as his second-stringers required to impress. It was hardly a classic performance against a West Ham team who offered frustratingly little as an attacking force. However, it was enough. Wenger hasn't won the League Cup in any of its guises but if he is to reach the final that he will need to navigate a punishing schedule. When both legs of the semi-final are factored in Arsenal face nine matches during the next 35 days. It's a period of time, as Wenger pointed out when he can't afford to lose players. Coquelin was also forced off until the end however, the manager reported that he had endured only cramp into a hamstring and he ought to be available for Liverpool.

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"It looks like he's out for Christmas. We'll normally perform a scan 48 hours after the injury and then we'll get some idea of the caliber. "When you hear him the pain is rather large, but the grade isn't always connected with the pain." As such, it didn't seem as though they left with any regrets. Requested to chase the game in the second half, the sum total of their efforts was a 64th-minute free-kick from Aaron Cresswell that curled nicely wide. The 7,000 traveling fans celebrated with had a shot. West Ham didn't have a lot of the ball and if they did, they took poor care of it. That frustrated Moyes but not as much as the concession. "It was a dreadful wish to give away," he added.

Arsenal pressed on into the front foot but there was zero excitement before the 39th minute when Sead Kolasinac made inroads up the left. The house fans howled when he led his diving header wide of a post. It's plain Moyes doesn't have the same resources as Wenger and he kept five of the starting XI that had won at Stoke City last Saturday. It was also easy to observe that this Saturday's home match against Newcastle is his priority. Moyes made his move with the dual debut of Andy Carroll and Diafra Sakho. It didn't work. Hart was booked after he mistimed a challenge on Welbeck at the 71st minute just outside the region, and West Ham never jeopardized the equalizer.

Sergej: Mourinho Is The Best Coach In The World


Following a streak of nine wins in 10 matches in Serie A, Lazio's form has tailed off in the past couple of weeks. They've won only one of their last five league games but, while their form has faltered, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic's stock has continued to soar. "I play for Lazio and I do not care who came to watch me. Liverpool, Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain have also been connected to the Serb, however, José Mourinho's team could be the best match for him. He's a remarkably versatile performer, who's adept as among the three midfielders in a 4-3-3 formation or supporting the striker at a 4-2-3-1. He's scored five league goals this season and three of these have been hit outside the 18-yard box -- which makes him more successful in range than any Manchester United player this season.

In actuality, Kevin de Bruyne is the only Premier League player with more goals from beyond the box (four) than Milinkovic-Savic. His returns of 1.5 important moves and 1.9 successful dribbles per match this season are also striking -- and he's been fouled on average 1.3 times per game, which reveals opponents struggle to stop him once he gets moving. Milinkovic-Savic can also be effective when sitting a little deeper he's averaging 2.4 tackles per league game this season, a figure just ball-winner Lucas Leiva (2.9) can better at Lazio but he's at his best when given the box-to-box part in a 4-3-3 formation. Simone Inzaghi has found the perfect setup to maximise his offensive and defensive abilities at Lazio, where he plays alongside Lucas and Luis Alberto. agen judi online

That having been said, he's still only 22 and wants to improve a few regions of his game. He's Lazio's second most prolific passer this season with 54.3 moves per game but his pass success rate of 81.8% could be greater. "I am still young and will make errors," he said earlier this season. To his credit, he's progressing; the two numbers are up from the previous Serie A campaign when he made 41.1 moves per game at a 73.4% completion rate. He's just going to get better and that improvement may arrive in England. "Ibrahimovic is my favorite footballer," he said in January. "His mentor, Mourinho, is the best director in the world -- he is intelligent and simply terrific."

If Lazio can be convinced to market and "the Sergeant" could be sure to leave Rome, he might well be marshaling a midfield in the Premier League quite soon. "That isn't going to happen. Certainly not," he said. "Come on, that is not real. What we're living is not real. The problem of winning 16 or 17 games in a row in the league and qualifying for the Champions League before we finished the group stage and today we are here playing with a lot of young players, that isn't normal. "In soccer, you fall points and you lose contests. I am not considering how many names, I'm thinking about another game."


The city seemed to have the quarter-final sewn up in regular time just for Bobby Madley, the referee, to award Leicester a controversial penalty in the 97th minute when he penalized Kyle Walker for a foul on Demarai Gray, who appeared to go to ground rather readily. Guardiola, who had fielded a much-changed City team, was obviously upset at the time of the punishment, but afterward, he chose to reflect on how his players responded. "What's important is how we responded. We might have gone down since it was the last minute and it was tough, especially with a lot of young players."

In a strange incident in the second half, a fan tried to face Guardiola in his specialized area just for stewards to intervene and block the supporter, who lost his footing, from making contact with the City manager. "I believe he wanted my top," said the City manager. "I was secure. Maybe next time he wants to wear better shoes."