Thursday, February 26, 2015

Pablo Piatti to be offered new contract

Pablo Piatti
Pablo Piatti has impressed with his performances this season and has been a key player for Valencia CF, so its no surprise that Valencia CF have offered him a new and improved contract that would keep the player until 2020. The negotiations are just beginning, so its likely going to be at least two weeks before an agreement is reached, but its said that Piatti is looking forward to penning a new long term contract as he is happy at Valencia CF.

Apart from him Valencia CF are also looking into extending the contracts of Daniel Parejo, Sofiane Seghouli and of course Jose Luis Gaya.

Napoli interested in Shkodran Mustafi

SSC Napoli are interested in Valencia CF defender Shkodran Mustafi who's been in top form this season and together with Nicolas Ottamendi are one of the best defending duos in Spain and even Europe. Nicolas Otamendi has peaked the interest of wealthy clubs like Manchester United, PSG and others, while Shkodran Mustafi is the more modest 'commodity' and clubs like Borusia Dortmund and now Napoli are interested in acquiring his services.

Apart from Napoli there are reportedly few English clubs interested in the defender as well. So far though Mustafi has gives a statement that he is focused on Valencia CF and isn't looking to move to a different club.

In case any club wants to acquire his services they will have to splash out a huge sum of money, probably in the region of 20 million euros, since Valencia CF aren't a selling club and if they do sell they will look to get an amazing deal and bring in quality replacement.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Radamel Falcao to join Valencia CF?

Radamel Falcao to join Valencia CF?
Radamel Falcao is supposedly set to join Valencia CF in the summer, as the club looks to strengthen its attack and the club have identified Radamel Falcao as the perfect option. He is currently on loan at Manchester United, but so far he hasn't impressed in England and is going to return to Monaco in the summer, who will be looking to sell him.

Peter Lim is personal friends with the super football agent Jorge Mendes and has a close professional relationship with him as well, so the agent has forwarded Radamel Falcao to Valencia CF and the club is interested in signing him.

He would not come cheap though as his original price is over 40 million euros, but since he's flopped at Manchester United and Monaco are determined to sell him, his price is said to be at a more reasonable 25 to 30 million euros.

Inter Milan interested in Antonio Barragan

Italian football club Inter Milan is supposedly interested in Valencia CF right back Antonio Barragan. Inter have strengthened significantly in the winter transfer market, but their coach Roberto Mancini feels like he need more defensive reinforcements, especially attacking full backs since Inter have often played with 5 players at the back or 3 central defenders and 2 full backs, depending how you see the formation.

Antonio Barragan has extended his contract till 2017, but the player has a low release clause and its possible the team could sell him if the offer is in the region of 6 million euros.

He's been a solid performer this season, previous seasons he's been inconsistent, but under new coach Nuno Espirito Santo he's been performing at a solid level. I know some readers of this blog would like to see him replaced and this could be it, though it will be hard to find a suitable replacement, the market doesn't have too many good, reliable right backs.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Valencia CF vs Getafe CF Match Report

Valencia CF secured yet another important victory in the fight for Champions League football against a well organized and tough to crack Getafe side. Valencia CF now is just 3 points behind Atletico Madrid who lost two to zero to Celta, their thin squad possibly catching up to them.

Valencia CF were lucky in the end to get to this 1-0 victory, since Getafe were a tough side to crack and if it wasn't for Negredo's penalty it might have ended in a scoreless draw.

The first half started explosive with Valencia CF instantly gaining control, with Otamendi running forward to the oppositions third, passing the ball to Gaya who runs into the penalty area and passes the ball to Negredo, but his shot is blocked.

Valencia CF would continue the pressure and attacking, with just few moments later Gaya running down the left flank again and passing the ball to Enzo Perez who's pass towards the center of the penalty area is blocked.

Valencia CF would threaten later on again this time Piatti dribbling around two Getafe players and then passing the ball to Rodrigo De Paul who was unmarked, but his long range shot was just wide, maybe if he passed or went forward it could have opened a more dangerous situation, but as it was it was a wasted shot.

I got to say it was by far the most dynamic Valencia CF I've seen in quite a while, it was pressure all over the pitch, good control of the ball, dangerous runs on the left flank, quickly swarming Getafe players and winning the ball, it was an explosive 15 minutes opening from Valencia CF. Of course after those initial 15 minutes the game calmed down as the players started tiring and it was a slower flow of the match.

The rest of the first half was pretty much fight in the middle of the park with Valencia CF being more dangerous when attacking and having more attacks, though nothing concrete or clear cut.

The second half was pretty much a copy of the first half, the team started good again and had few runs down the left flank, but again nothing too dangerous. Valencia CF coach Nuno Santo would make the first substitution in the 60th minute bringing in Sofiane Feghouli for De Paul who had a limited contribution, the left flank with Piatti and Gaya was definitely much more dangerous.

Feghouli didn't bring too much change, some more brute force, trying more penetrative runs, but he also lost the ball a lot more times.

Anyways the goal for Valencia CF would come from a penalty, Feghouli made an erroneous pass with the ball hitting a Getafe player, but it kind of went flying in the penalty area towards Negredo, he positioned himself in front of Getafe defender who hit him from behind trying to get the ball and a penalty was awarded.

Negredo took the penalty and slotted securely in the net to make it 1-0 for Valencia CF.

The biggest change for Valencia CF would be when Rodrigo Moreno came in, he instantly had a big effect and found himself in several chances, the first one was when Feghouli dribbled past a player from the right wing, went into the penalty area, brought another defender on to him and then passed to Moreno who was clear on goal and only about several meters away from goal, but his shot was way too powerful and went way above the goal.

Later on Moreno would heave another chance, this time from a cross from the left and he headed the ball just above the goal again.

All of those misses were almost punished by Getafe in the dying moments of the match as they had a clear cut chance to score, their attack started from the left wing, there was a cross towards one of their players who was alone on goal just one meters away from goal and the goal was empty, but thankfully for Valencia CF he managed to miss. Truth be told the ball was moving very fast and powerful, so it would have been really hard to convert it to go into the goal.

Ultimately Valencia CF won, the team had several chances to score more goals, but it needed a penalty to be able to score a goal and some of the misses almost came back to hunt us, thankfully Getafe players didn't have their scoring shoes on either, and Valencia CF walks away with 3 more points in the bag.

Technical Details:
Valencia CF: Diego Alves, Barragan, Mustafi, Otamendi, Gayà, Javi Fuego, Enzo Pérez, Parejo (Rodrigo, m.72), De Paul (Feghouli, M.60), Piatti and Negredo (Orban, m.90).
Getafe CF: Jona, Alexis, Naldo, Velázquez (Vigaray, m.69), Roberto Lago (Escudero, m.55), Juan Rodriguez, Lacen, Sarabia, Sammir (Freddy, m.67), Diego Castro and Alvaro.

Alvaro Negredo 1-0(p.g.), 71 min.

Player Ratings:
Diego Alves 6 - Pretty much a spectator for most of the match, I don't think he had to make a save.
Barragan 6 - Didn't have too much to worry at the back, this allowed him to move forward a lot, but with limited success.
Mustafi 6.5 - Did his job well, wasn't troubled too much, though had a few dangerous moments at the back.
Otamendi 6.5 - Same as Mustafi, did his job at the back well and wasn't troubled too much.
Gaya 8 - Constant threat down the left flank, with Getafe's attacks limited he was able to attack as much as he liked and did form a great partnership with Piatti.
Fuego 6 - Was anonymous for most of the match, though he did break down some of the Getafe attacks and provided accurate simple passes.
Parejo 7 - Very good performance by the captain, kept possession and provided intelligent and accurate passes most of the time, leading the team from the back and into attack.
Enzo Perez 6.5 - Improved performance over his last few games, he'd be pleased with his progress, though he will need to do a lot more to justify his high price tag.
De Paul 6 - Did pose a danger once or twice, he had two long range shots, but didn't have the same penetration and contribution as Piatti.
Negredo 7 - Was pretty active in this match and as the sole attacker did a lot of work upfront, though he didn't have any clear cut chances. Positioned well to get the penalty from which he easily converted to give Valencia CF the lead.
Piatti 8 - Great play by Piatti, was menacing for the Getafe defense and with Gaya's overlapping runs on the left they did great work, with most of VCF attacks coming from them.
Feghouli 6 - More direct running, had one good pass to Moreno, but overall similar contribution to De Paul.
Moreno 6.5 - Had a big impact on the game once he came on, provided a big threat against Getafe and found himself in good positions time and time again, unfortunate not to score, if he would have scored he could have easily been man of the match.
Orban N/A - Not enough time.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Borusia Dortmund interested in Shkodran Mustafi

Borusia Dortmund are said to be interested in Valencia CF center back Shkodran Mustafi who along with Nicolas Otamendi has caught the eye of many top European clubs. Even though Borusia Dortmund are currently fighting relegation battle and are pretty much guaranteed to miss out on Champions League football, they still command a lot of respect in Germany and the club is a good improving ground for players.

Borusia Dortmund are likely going to lose Mats Hummels in the summer with several clubs chasing after him and they are going to use part of the money to replace him. Valued at 40 million euros, Dortmund will have plenty of money to work with to get a proper replacement and an offer of 20 million euros might entice Valencia CF to sell Shkodran Mustafi if the management thinks they can find a suitable replacement.

As far as the match report against Getafe, I'm going to write it later today and post it late in the night or tomorrow morning. I watched the match, but was busy and couldn't write the report.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Valencia CF vs Getafe CF Match Preview

Valencia CF vs Getafe CF Match Preview
Stadium: Mestalla
Date: 15.02.2015, 12:00 CET
23rd matchday, La Liga
Coaches: Nuno Santo and Quique Flores

Valencia CF managed to secure a very important win last week against Espanyol that put it ahead of Sevilla on the table, be it by only one point, but yesterday Sevilla managed to secure a big 3-0 win over Cordoba and thus retake the position on the table, so this win is crucial for Valencia CF and since its at home at the Mestalla its a must win game.

Valencia CF have been playing incredibly well at home, the problem has lied with the away matches this season and last game against Espanyol was important in order to break the trend of losing so many points at away games, so today at the Mestalla the team should be able to secure a comfortable win. The big difference for this match is that it starts at 12 O'clock CET, so its a big change from the night matches Valencia CF have been playing so far, but this shouldn't affect  the team at all.

As far as the players for this match Paco Alcacer and Andre Gomes are unavailable, but everyone else is and due to the two missing players Nuno has even included Felipe Augusto in the squad. As far as the formation and tactics I think its going to be a 4-3-3, but I think we are going to see Moreno benched as he hasn't shown too much in the last few matches, so most likely Feghouli is going to start.

Valencia CF Squad:
Goalkeepers: Alves, Yoel
Defenders: Cancelo, Barragan, Vezo, Mustafi, Otamendi, Gaya, Orban
Midfielders: Fuego, Parejo, Enzo, Felipe, Tropi, Feghouli, Piatti, De Paul
Forwards: Negredo, Moreno

Technical Details Valencia CF (probable setups):
Formation: 4-3-3
Line-up: Diego; Barragan, Mustafi, Otamendi, Gaya; Fuego, Enzo, Parejo; Feghouli, Negredo, Piatti.
Tactics: Medium defensive line, own third pressure, mixed passing, counter attacks.

Match Prediction: 
Valencia CF 2-0 Getafe CF
I expect mostly a comfortable 2-0 win for Valencia CF. I know the last few matches have been turbulent and crazy at times, but pretty much all of the squad is now available,  we have depth again with Piatti and Feghouli on the wings, the coach has more options and I think its about time we got a straightforward win.