Thomas Vermaelen: Lionel Messi is better than ‘world-class’ Eden Hazard

Barcelona defender Thomas Vermaelen has said that Lionel Messi is on a different level to Eden Hazard despite the latter becoming the go-to player in the Chelsea ranks. The former Arsenal man is set to return to London this week when the Catalan giants face-off against the Blues in the Champions League round of 16 first-leg.


In an interview with The Guardian, the experienced centre-back was asked to compare the individual abilities of Hazard and Messi. Though he initially admitted that there are similarities in their style of play, the 32-year-old stressed it is difficult to place him into the calibre of Messi, who has five Ballon d’Or titles to his name.
Continue reading Thomas Vermaelen: Lionel Messi is better than ‘world-class’ Eden Hazard

Thomas Vermaelen confident injury problems are behind him

Belgium international Thomas Vermaelen is looking forward to contributing towards Barcelona’s success after having overcome his concerns with regular injuries. The former Arsenal man started the campaign as the fourth-choice defender, but injuries to Javier Mascherano and Samuel Umtiti have enabled him cement a regular role in central defence alongside Gerard Pique.

In an interview with Mundo Deportivo, Vermaelen is pleased to have gone unscathed for more than a year, and he is aiming to integrate into prove his worth to the Catalan giants, he said: “I understand that people had doubts about my physical condition because in recent years I have had a few physical problems. But since November 2016 I have not had any more problems and I’ve been feeling good for a year. I know I have a reputation as a player made of glass, but I have managed to overcome that. I knew I had the ability to play for Barca but in previous years, due to injuries, I had not been able to show what I am capable of.”
Continue reading Thomas Vermaelen confident injury problems are behind him

Ernesto Valverde calm over Antoine Griezmann speculation

Barcelona head coach Ernesto Valverde refused to discuss the possibility of signing Atletico Madrid forward Antoine Griezmann in the New Year. The Catalans had been hot on the trail of both Philippe Coutinho and Angel di Maria during the dying stages of the summer transfer window, but a deal could not materialise for either player.

Ahead of the Leganes clash, Valverde admired the qualities of Griezmann and revealed that the club have not closed the door on pursuing fresh recruits in January, he said: “Griezmann is a great player, one of the names being talked about but for now I have the players that I have. In the future, we will see. Of course, the club, like all clubs, is open to doing business in the January window, even though we’re happy with what we already have. We’re not going to close the door on anything.”
Continue reading Ernesto Valverde calm over Antoine Griezmann speculation

Inter Milan set sights on signing Thomas Vermaelen

Inter Milan have reportedly set their sights on signing Barcelona defender Thomas Vermaelen as they look to bolster their central defensive department in the New Year. The Nerazzurri currently have Milan Skriniar, Joao Miranda, and Andreas Ranocchia as the only senior centre-backs in the club’s ranks.

According to TMW, Luciano Spalletti’s side have earmarked Vermaelen as their top defensive target for January as they look to maintain their strong start to the campaign. The San Siro outfit are currently just two points adrift of league leaders Napoli, and the manager is hoping to add more options to the defence in order to avoid burnout in the second half of the season.
Continue reading Inter Milan set sights on signing Thomas Vermaelen

SPALLETTI RAILS AT JOURNALISTS

Luciano Spalletti reckons the journalists are trying to put cracks in the Roma camp by repeatedly raising the point of Francesco Totti’s exclusion from the starting XI. As per Spalletti, he has already explained that he is being a little cautious about his skipper due to his injury which has healed not a long back.

But, despite his explanation, every press conference he attends, most of the questions thrown to him are based on Totti only and that’s why he wonders if it’s done with some sort of deliberation, maybe to cause a rift or something. Continue reading SPALLETTI RAILS AT JOURNALISTS

ENRIQUE RELIES ON VERMAELEN

Rumours about an immediate departure from the Camp Nou for defender Thomas Vermaelen may be put on hold for the time being after manager Luis Enrique praised the player for his professional attitude. The former Arsenal defender has been a major disappointment for Barcelona since his £ 16 million move from the Premier League.

Nicolas Anelka

He was expected to be the replacement for Carlos Puyol when he moved to Barcelona, but Vermaelen has been blighted by numerous injuries the last two years. He has been able to make less than 20 appearances during this period. Even though Barcelona have lifted quite a lot of trophies in these two years, Vermaelen has never been a clear part of any. Continue reading ENRIQUE RELIES ON VERMAELEN

Thomas Vermaelen says that he is very much looking forward to be part of major competitions

After going through an injury hell in the last 24 months, Barcelona defender Thomas Vermaelen says that he is very much looking forward to be part of major competitions.

Immediately after joining for £ 16 million from Arsenal, the Belgian international found himself consistently on the sidelines due to recurrences of various injury problems. It has been only in the last few months that he has been featuring regularly for club and country. The defender has easily lost two years of his productive footballing career and he intends to make the best out of the extended absence from the pitch.

Due to the continued absence, manager Luis Enrique has gone for other options on the pitch. It will be up to Vermaelen to convince the manager that he is the right man to partner with Gerard Pique. The injury record of the defender has to improve a lot as well as his form. The impressive form of the Catalan club will make it doubly hard forVermaelen to return to the first-team, but he remains confident of doing so. At the moment, the 30-year-old is just happy to be part of the squad for the Club World Cup. Barcelona are overwhelming favourites to lift yet another title but it will beVermaelen’s first proper success with the Spanish club. Continue reading Thomas Vermaelen says that he is very much looking forward to be part of major competitions

Vermaelen’s career at Barcelona is getting demolished due to injuries

Thomas Vermalen signed a 5 year long contract with Barcelona on August of 2014 but the Belgium defender has not managed to make a single league appearance for his new club due to a recurring hamstring injury.

A few weeks ago, Vermaelen was seen in the training grounds with the rest of his teammates of Barcelona and it was rumored that the player was going to be featured for the remaining matches of the season but the 29 year old defender still has not made a league appearance for the team of Luis Enrique.

This isn’t the first time that Vermalen has had to sit on the sidelines of a club for a significantly long period of time as this has occurred in the past when he was a player of Arsenal and was not able to play for a large amount of matches due to consistent injuries.

€15 million is the price that Barcelona had to pay in order to sign Thomas Vermaelen from Arsenal and this is a very high amount of money for a player who still has not performed in a competitive match since having been signed. Continue reading Vermaelen’s career at Barcelona is getting demolished due to injuries

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Moyes expects Rooney to be a success as Captain

Former Manchester Everton manager David Moyes says that he expects Wayne Rooney to be a success as the new captain of the England national team. After the retirement of Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard in successive weeks, England manager Roy Hodgson decided to appoint Rooney as the new captain of the national team. The 28-year-old, however, has divided opinions when it comes to his ability as an international footballer. Despite scoring a goal every other game for Manchester United, Rooney has struggled to replicate his success especially in big tournaments. During the World Cup 2014, the striker scored only his first goal at the World Cup in nine attempts.

Rooney has also received the captain’s armband at Manchester United after the departure of Ryan Giggs, Rio Ferdinand, and Nemanja Vidic all in one summer. Moyes, who is currently out of work after leaving United last season, has worked with Rooney at two clubs and he is someone who knows the striker extremely well. Roy Hodgson has players like Joe Hart and Gary Cahill who play in the defence and offer a more traditional option for the captain’s armband, but Moyes believes that the experience of Rooney when it comes to winning major titles will be a major boost.

“It is a terrific time for Wayne professionally and he is ready for it. At this time in his career, I am sure he wants to take on that extra responsibility the captaincies bring. It could make him an even better player. He wants to show that development, he has proved he is a top player, now he will want to show he can take on the responsibility and be a top captain. He may be taking the armbands at a difficult time, everyone knows Manchester United are going through a transitional period,” said Moyes.