Video Rating: 4 / 509.27.14
Borussia Dortmund manager Jurgen Klopp has revealed that his former Manchester United compatriot Sir Alex Ferguson accepted to him that he had not got the best out of Shinji Kagawa. The Japanese international moved to Manchester United for around £ 16 million in 2012. After failing to hold down a first-team squad under three different managers – Ferguson, David Moyes, and Louis van Gaal – Kagawa returned to Dortmund this summer for a fraction of the fee. The 25-year-old played some of the best football of his career at Dortmund and he was expected to be a hit at United.
Ferguson reportedly met Klopp at an event in Nyon where the Scot accepted that United have not got the best out of Kagawa. The 25-year-old had spent only two seasons at Dortmund during which time he became famed for playing just behind Robert Lewandowski in an attacking formation. He scored 17 goals in 43 appearances in his final season at Dortmund. However, in the three years at Manchester United, he managed only six goals in 57 appearances. Most of those appearance came as a substitute, while Kagawa was often utilised in several positions across the pitch. Due to the presence of several number 10s, United were not able to give Kagawa his favoured no 10 place.
“I met Sir Alex in Nyon and he’s still in love with Shinji. He told me, ‘Shame we didn’t manage this well so that it worked out for him. We were satisfied in the first year’. And in the second year you usually make the next step but he didn’t manage to do it. But Sir Alex was saying ‘Shame we should have made this work’,” said Klopp. The return of Kagawa to Dortmund makes the German club extremely strong ahead of the Champions League campaign where they will face the likes of Arsenal in the group stages.09.4.14
Video Rating: 4 / 508.11.14
Germany went right past every obstacle they faced in the 2014 World Cup with dominating victories against Portugal, USA, France, Algeria, Brazil and Argentina. That was the road that Germany had to go through before being claimed as the best in the world.
There are some tournaments where the crown is being tightly contested between 2 or more top squads but this latest edition of the World Cup had Germany being relentless and not showing any signs of slowing down despite the opponent that came in their way.
The German attacker Miroslav Klose marked his name in the history books of World Cups by becoming the all-time top scorer in World Cups which was a record previously held by the Brazilian Ronaldo who managed to score 15 goals but now the German Klose surpassed him by scoring 16.
Brazil were the favorites of winning the 2014 World Cup but a shocking defeat against the Germans destroyed their dreams of lifting the prestigious silverware in their home turf. Argentina had one of the most impressive and powerful attacking combinations at their disposal with the likes of: Lionel Messi, Gonzalo Higuain, Ezequiel Lavezzi, Sergio Aguero and Angel Di Maria being the attacking players for Argentina, there was no doubt at all why they were one of the favorites of winning.
Unfortunately for Argentina, it just never happened as Lionel Messi lacked the spark that he has when he plays with his club Barcelona. Messi was the main man to make it happen for his country but his performance was mediocre compared to some of his displays where he is the main force for Barcelona.
There were some flashes of brilliance on some occasions but it didn’t last long enough for Argentina to defeat Germany. The players of Joachim Low dominated the finals of the World Cup by having 64% of possession and more than double the amount of passes, they were comfortable with the ball all around the pitch while Argentina seemed to struggle just keeping it under their control for a large period of time.
The future is bright for Germany as the national squad has players with plenty of years left to play at a high level and their leader; Joachim Low has a contract with the team that will see him remaining in charge of the squad at least until 2016.
Video Rating: 4 / 507.22.14
German soccer is set to lose one of its big names after Bayern Munich confirmed that Mario Mandzukic will be joining Atletico Madrid for an undisclosed transfer fee. The German outfit deemed Mandzukic as surplus after managing to secure Robert Lewandowski on a free transfer. Further, Mandzukic failure to fit into the plans of Guardiola is also seen as one of the reasons for his exit. Still, he is regarded as one of the top strikers in the world. At just 28, he has a lot of years left in him. This has led to interest from the likes of Chelsea and Arsenal in the last few weeks.
There was also a possibility of the Croatian striker staying in German football with the likes of Borussia Dortmund and Bayer Leverkusen candidates to sign him. However, he appears to have set his sights on moving to Atletico Madrid, who reached the Champions League final last season. Bayern Munich sporting director Matthias Sammer confirmed that the two clubs have come to a verbal agreement and he does not expect the transfer to fail at this stage. He has not revealed the transfer fee, but it is likely to be in the region of £ 10 million.
Despite his struggles last season, he still scored 28 goals and was the top scorer at Bayern. “There is a verbal agreement between Atletico Madrid and Bayern Munich, as well as between Atletico Madrid and Mario Mandzukic. Although nothing has been signed yet, I believe that we all will stay true to our words,” said the Bayern Munich sporting director. The move does not come as a major surprise since Mandzukic accepted that he was not going to fit into Guardiola’s passing style of football. The Croatian is someone who relies upon his physical advantage to score.07.10.14
Video Rating: 4 / 506.23.14
German outfit Borussia Dortmund have dismissed rumours that Marco Reus would be sold in the summer. The German international has been heavily linked with a move away from German soccer with Barcelona being interested in his services. Recent reports in Spain suggested that the Catalan club had already agreed a £ 28 million deal to sign the 25-year-old. However, Dortmund have confirmed that there is no truth in such rumours and that the player will be staying at the club. Reus is seen as one of the exciting prospects in world football.
Much was expected of him at the World Cup 2014, but he suffered a serious injury in Germany’s final friendly match against Armenia to be ruled out of the tournament. He recently spoke about the disappointment of having to miss out on this major tournament, but this would also allow Dortmund a great opportunity to get back to 100% before the start of the new season. The departure of Robert Lewandowski is set to make Reus the number-one striker at the club. Apart from being a striker, he is also capable of playing in several positions across the front.
Due to their failures to capture Sergio Aguero from Manchester City, it was rumoured that Barcelona have turned their attention towards Reus.
“I can definitely rule out a transfer this summer,” said Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc. Manchester United are also thought to be interested in his services. After their failures to get Thomas Müller and Arjen Robben from Bayern Munich, new united manager Louis van Gaal is reportedly targeting a move for Reus. The striker has been one of best players for Dortmund for the last few years, but his presence has been overshadowed by the likes of Lewandowski and Gotze. Their departures could help him establish as one of the top players in the world.06.12.14
Video Rating: 5 / 506.2.14
Despite winning the league title amongst other trophies like the FIFA Club World Cup, Bayern Munich have been facing a lot of criticism in the last few days after the exit from the Champions League following a 5-0 aggregate thrashing at the hands of Real Madrid. Bayern came into the competition as the reigning holders and also were widely judged as the best team in the world. However, after managing to win the league title in record time, and the performances have been slowly slipping.
They only managed to beat a struggling Manchester United in the quarter-finals of the competition, while the deficiencies were severely exposed in the second leg against Real Madrid. After a 1-0 defeat in the first leg, Bayern suffered a 4-0 defeat in front of the home fans. This was the heaviest defeats suffered by the club in front of the home fans for more than three decades. Despite such statistics, Borussia Dortmund managerial Jurgen Klopp, whose team recently beat Bayern Munich in the league, says that Guardiola’s team still remain the best in the world.
Dortmund are expected to put in a much better challenge for the league title next time around. Even though they finished second in the table, they were almost 20 points behind Bayern Munich.
“I think that in a cup final, unless the champion plays a team from the second league, there is no favourite. So that’s not important. But Bayern Munich are the favourites in every game I can think of. And that hasn’t changed at all because of some results from the last couple of games. I’ve read things concerning the Real-Bayern match, where they totally forgot about how the two goals happened. They made it hard for Bayern to turn the game again,” said Klopp.
Dortmund and Bayern Munich took part in an all-German Champions League final last season.
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