Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Paco Alcacer extends Valencia CF contract to 2020

Its official, Paco Alcacer has extended his contract with Valencia CF to 2020. The new contract is a much improved one, with significantly higher salary and bonuses for the player, as well as a huge buy-out clause set at 80 million euros if other clubs want to acquire the player in the future.

Speaking to official club channel VCFplay after the agreement, Alcácer said: “I am delighted and proud to be continuing at Valencia CF for five more seasons. I want to thank the club for the confidence in me that they are showing. What I have to do now is pay them back by scoring goals and giving everything that I have to help the team.”

Some good news there and next up is Jose Gaya's contract, which the club is still negotiating for and trying to find the balance. Of course Valencia CF can't break the bank and offer huge salaries, the players will have to accept good, but not huge salaries if they really want to stay in Valencia CF and maybe through bonuses like scoring goals or keeping clean sheets or qualifying to champions league they will get a big chunk more money.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Valencia CF 3-1 Sevilla FC Match Report

Valencia CF won a very important match against Sevilla FC, one that brings Valencia CF ahead of Sevilla on the table, gives the advantage to Valencia CF in the head to head matches in case both teams finish with the same points at the end of the season and more importantly as I've already written in the match preview this win gives Valencia CF the mental advantage.

This loss is Sevilla's fourth loss against the bigger teams, they've managed to win against most smaller teams, but they've lost to pretty much all top teams, so this goes in their heads a little bit and creates an inferiority complex for them. They are also in more competitions than Valencia CF, in fact a lot more competitions and this creates a better position for Valencia CF to reach the champions league spots over Sevilla. While they will be tired battling on three fronts, Valencia CF only has to focus on the Spanish league and reaching that champions league spot.

As far as the match tonight it was a very tough match for Valencia CF, both teams are similarly matched, but in different aspects. As suspected Valencia CF were again weak in the midfield portion, while Sevilla were particularly strong in that aspect.

The match was fairly equal in all aspects at the start, in fact Valencia CF had the more dangerous attacks, and even had two claims for penalties in the first 10 minutes of the match, but the referee waved play on on both of those. In the 18th minute though Negredo would go down in the penalty area and the referee finally blew the whistle and awarded Valencia CF the penalty.

Daniel Parejo took to the spot to take the penalty and his shot was in the opposite direction of where the goalkeeper jumped and he scored, giving Valencia CF the 1-0 lead.

After this lead Sevilla FC would reorganize and take the control in midfield, in fact they started gaining possession little by little and ultimately reached something like 60% over Valencia's 40% possession. For all their possession and midfield control they basically only had one opportunity that arrived from Alves error and it would be Valencia CF that would score again to make it 2-0.

Sevilla had a foul awarded to them, they took the free kick, it was a poor ball and from there on Enzo Perez would start a run, got close to Sevilla's own third and passed the ball to Parejo on the left who was clear on goal and his shot was accurate and went into the net to make it 2-0 for Valencia CF.

The celebrations would be short lived though as Sevilla FC had a penalty awarded to them just few minutes later. In fact it was Parejo who would cause the penalty by making a late and clumsy challenge in the penalty area, one which if he had not made it, it wouldn't have been dangerous for Valencia's goal. It was just a poor challenge and the referee awared the penalty kick.

Carlos Bacca took to the spot and much like Parejo's penalty spot his shot was in the opposite direction of where Diego Alves jumped and it was a goal for Sevilla, making it 2-1 and giving them a chance to get back into the game.

There was barely few minutes played again and Sevilla were rewarded a second penalty, this time due to a foul by Cancelo. If the first Sevilla penalty was clear, this one was not. In fact it seemed like it was way too harsh, there was small contact, but usually this is a play on situation.

Anyways Bacca would take to the spot once again having beaten Diego Alves once again, he was looking to beat him again and equalize the score for Sevilla. He shot to the left side of the goal and this time Alves jumped in the right direction and saved the penalty. He is not considered a penalty specialist for nothing after all.

That was pretty much the end of the first half.

The second half brought out a more organized Valencia CF side in the midfield, the area which they lost quite bad to Sevilla in the first half. So clearly the talk and directions Nuno gave the team worked and we saw Valencia CF retain the ball for more than just few second at a time. In the first half the ball would be lost within 5 second, now the ball was retained longer and the team managed to scramble more passes together.

This new found strength in midfield would result in Valencia CF attacking with more purpose and better organized, which also took pressure off the defense, which at that point needed some stability. With more attacks going Valencia's way it was Rodrigo Moreno who received the ball on the left wing, he moved forward, dribbled past two players, cut inside the center of the penalty area and found Javi Guego alone and unmarked, Fuego had a clear shot on goal and he would not miss the shot, releasing a powerful and accurate shot that went into the net and increased Valencia's lead to 3-1.

After this Sevilla reorganized once again, gained back control of the midfield and started attacking constantly again. Their main man was Deulofeu who was giving Valencia trouble all match long on that left side. Gaya was doing good defensively, but when he went forward and was coming back there would be a little bit of space.

Otamendi would also have a rather big error as he was running towards a fast moving through ball he reached out with his leg to block the ball, but he completely missed it, allowing Deulofeu to run past him, get the ball, and manage a shot past Gaya, but only into Diego Alves hands.

Unai Emery made few changes to try and save the match, taking out a defender and bringing in Kevin Gameiro in, but ultimately it proved too little, too late and Valencia CF managed to hold onto their 3-1 lead, actually having few more good chances as well to increase the result.

Technical Details:
Valencia CF: Diego Alves, Joao Cancelo, Nicolas Otamendi, Skhodran Mustafi, José Gayà, Javi Fuego, Dani Parejo, Enzo Pérez, André Gomes (Lucas Orban, m. 78), Rodrigo (Rodrigo de Paul, m. 88), Álvaro Negredo (Paco Alcácer, m. 83).

Sevilla FC: Beto, Coke, Carriço, Nicolas Pareja (Iago Aspas, m. 79), Diogo, Krychowiak, Iborra, Éver Banega, Deulofeu, Vitolo (Denis Suárez, m. 65), Bacca (Gameiro, m. 70).

Daniel Parejo 1-0 (p.g), 19 min.
Daniel Parejo 2-0, 33 min. Assist Enzo Perez
Carlos Bacca 2-1 (p.g),  36 min.
Javi Fuego 3-1, 55 min. Assist Rodrigo Moreno

Player Ratings:
Diego 6.5 - Had a shaky start, missing a clear punch to the ball and creating a chance for Sevilla, beaten for the first penalty kick, though went on to make a great penalty save several minutes later and kept Valencia CF in the lead. Had few more more casual saves later on.
Cancelo 7 - Complete performance from the young right back, really impressive stuff if I may say so myself. Defensively solid, dealt with everything at the back and was great going forward, causing occasional trouble for Sevilla. Unlucky to get a penalty awarded against him.
Mustafi 7 - Should pass quicker, could have made a blunder again like in previous game where he got a red card, lucky to get away with it. Apart from that some solid defending and great interceptions.
Otamendi 7 - Back to his best once again, great physical presence, no nonsense defending from him, though he did have one error in the second half, if that was to be a goal it would have negated 1.5 points from his score.
Gaya 7 - Had to deal with Deulofeu all match long and was fairly good dealing with him, certainly preventing clear chances, though Deulofeu was Sevilla's most dangerous player and constantly caused problems on the left side. Offensively another super performance, good passing, crosses, moving the team forward.
Fuego 8 - Great all round performance, defensively very solid, organized the midfield, had some good blocks in the final third and scored Valencia's third goal.
Parejo 7 - As always had some wayward passes and silly moves, but kept possession better than anyone else and his defensive contribution was big this match.
Enzo 7 - Similar performance to Parejo, couldn't quite play a passing game and some of his forward moves were blocked, but worked hard defensively.
Gomes 7.5 - The danger man for Valencia CF and really the only player who felt really secure and oozed confidence when he had the ball at his feet. Easily dribbled past Sevilla players time and time again and started several dangerous attacks, managed to always retain and then pass the ball.
Moreno 8 - The second most dangerous man for Valencia CF, initiated two good chances, one of which resulted in a goal where he provided the assist for and had few opportunities for himself as well, shooting few times, though unfortunately his shots were mostly blocked.
Negredo 6 - Managed to get the penalty for Valencia CF and provided a body in the penalty area that Sevilla had to worry about, but didn't quite hit the mark. He had some missed opportunities to do more.
Orban N/A - Not enough time
Paco N/A - Not enough time
De Paul N/A - Not enough time

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Valencia CF vs Sevilla FC Match Preview

Valencia CF vs Sevilla FC Match Preview
Stadium: Mestalla
Date: 25.01.2014, 21:00 CET
20th matchday, La Liga
Coaches: Nuno Espirito Santo and Unai Emery

The first half of the season is officially over and with the match against Sevilla FC tomorrow the second half of the season will officially begin. Sevilla FC is managed by former Valencia CF coach Unai Emery and he's been leading them impressively, managing to compete with Valencia CF step by step. Since the two teams are pretty much same on points and are similarly matched, tomorrow's match will be decisive. I mean of course Nuno Santo will say its not decisive, its just one match, he has to. The reality is that the match against Sevilla is decisive and it will dictate the rest of the season, assuming both teams have similar performances as they've had so far. I mean if one team all of a sudden decided to be really bad then it wouldn't matter, but assuming similar performances in the second half of the season as the first half, this match will be crucial.

Winning against Sevilla FC will not only give Valencia CF 3 points, get them ahead on the table, but it will also send a message to Sevilla and other teams that we mean business, we are here to compete and to win and we don't care who you are, we are going for the win. It will also mentally affect Sevilla in a negative way, because if they lose to Valencia CF they will feel weaker, they'll feel that Valencia CF is superior to them, they will feel like they can't compete with the big guys, since they've already lost to all the favorites, they lost to Barcelona, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid, so losing to Valencia CF as well would be devastating and affect their mental state how they are the weaker team.

I think winning is the key not only because it negatively affects them, it positively affects Valencia CF, it reaffirms the belief that we can beat anyone and that this is a top team, fighting with the top guys, competing on equal footing. We have a very young squad and such affirmations are crucial for the development, crucial for Valencia CF becoming a top tier team and competing for the title the next season.

Valencia CF is still weakened from the loss of Sofiane Feghouli due to the the African cup on nations and Pablo Piatti's injury, as well as the recent injury of Antonio Barragan, but good news is that Nicolas Otamendi is back in the squad after a smaller injury and is likely to start in this match. Alvaro Negredo will of course be coming back to his previous club, his previous home and it will be interesting to see if Nuno decides to have him in the starting eleven or possibly keep him as a reserve in case he is needed later on.

Valencia CF Squad:
Goalkeepers: Alves, Yoel
Defenders: Cancelo, Vezo, Mustafi, Otamendi, Gaya, Orban
Midfielders: Fuego, Parejo, Enzo, Gomes, Felipe, Zuculini, De Paul
Forwards: Negredo, Paco, Moreno

Technical Details Valencia CF (probable setups):
Formation: 4-3-3
Line-up: Diego; Cancelo, Mustafi, Otamendi, Gaya; Enzo, Parejo, Gomes; Moreno, Paco, De Paul.
Tactics: Medium defensive line, own half pressure, mixed passing, midfield triangle, counter attacks.

Match Result:
Valencia CF 1-1 Sevilla FC
I think its going to be a very close match, both clubs are similarly matched, Unai Emery obviously knows Valencia CF really well and he can set-up a strategy to counter us. I think the most likely outcome is a draw, with both teams scoring one goal. Basically a repeat of the first match this season.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

PSG interested in Daniel Parejo

Paris Saint-Germain FC are interested in Valencia CF midfielder Daniel Parejo and are monitoring his situation. The French team have been having some issue this season as their team has not been as strong as they would have liked and are looking to strengthen their ranks.

Valencia CF have been looking into acquiring Ezequiel Lavezzi from PSG since last year in the summer transfer windows, looking again at the possibility this January and PSG could be open to the possibility of letting Ezequiel Lavezzi only if Daniel Parejo comes the other way.

Now that Valencia CF have acquired Enzo Perez and reports of Daniel Fletcher possibly joining Valencia CF floating around, it could all lead to Daniel Parejo leaving for PSG, with Lavezzi and Darren Fletcher coming to Valencia CF.

What do you guys think? Would this actually be a good deal and is there any merit to it? Tell us in the comments.

Once again guys there are several of you out there who keep posting on the old blogger comment system. I'm just going to name some of you so you get this message and figure it out. I don't know why Disqus comment system isn't loading for you, maybe you are using some script block or accessing the link directly or something, but if you want your comments seen and to discuss with other people, you need to write on the disqus comment system.

Callister Khoaley, DIckson, ElCaso, Maciek S, few others...

Valencia CF interested in James Milner

According to some sources Valencia CF is interested in bringing Manchester City player James Milner to their side. His contract with Manchester City expires this summer and there has been no signs of the player extending his contract with City and thus Valencia CF can move in to swoop the player.

Since joining Manchester City in 2010 he hasn't been the standard choice, he's always been a secondary choice and and his career has been up and down at different times. Now that he has found a place in the team though he finds himself at 29 years of age with his contract expiring and Manchester City are unwilling to pay him anything more than 2.8 million a year, which would be a reduction of 1 million euros.

Valencia CF can't pay him even 2.8 million, even though the club is in good financial status now because the club is trying to be profitable and abide by the fair play standards. The advantage would be that the player will get a new start and become a standard player for Valencia CF.

Personally I can see James Milner leaving City and joining another club, but I don't think he will move to Valencia CF. We just don't have the money to play his premier league level salary and he would need to basically accept a 2 million euros reduction to join us.

What do you guys think? Will James Milner join Valencia CF and can the club accommodate him?

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Manchester United bid 35 million euros for Nicolas Otamendi

Manchester United have reportedly had a 35 million bid for Nicolas Otamendi rejected by Valencia CF.

Manchester United are looking to strengthen their squad this winter and their defense has been the primary concern so far in the season, with the club being linked to various defenders from Thiago Silva, Pique and Mats Hummels in the past. They have also been interested in Nicolas Otamendi throughout the current season and his superb performances had made him the primary target.

Now it seems Manchester United have decided to acquire Nicolas Otamendi and offered 35 million euros to Valencia CF, but the club has rejected that offer and is planning on keeping the defender in its ranks long term. With Peter Lim at the helm of the club these kind of offers are no longer relevant and the team isn't forced to sell any players, certainly not one of its best players.

Nicolas Otamendi also has a long term contract with Valencia CF so even really reputable clubs like Real Madrid or Bayern Munich won't matter, as Valencia CF can just reject any offers and keep the player, with his release clause being set at a huge 50 million euros. Something that would be a world record for a defender if someone was to reach it, which is highly unlikely.

Hey guys I see there are few people commenting on the old blogger comment system, I don't know why Disqus comment system isn't loading for you, maybe you are using script block or are accessing the page with the blogger comments link and thus you are directed to the blogger system, but if you want your comments seen, please use the Disqus comment system.

Again the Disqus comment system should be the one loading, not the blogger comment system.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Valencia 3 v 2 Almeria La Liga 17/1/2015

The first half had a bright start which saw Valencia take the lead after 11 minutes with Parejo deftly placing the ball into the bottom corner after a good cross from the right from Barragan.  The joy was shortl lived however when within 2 minutes the team from Andalucia were on level terms. Hemed getting the better of Orban to force the ball home from a cross from the left from Arsenal loanee Wellington Silva.  The goal though could have been easily avoided had Enzo Perez not needlessly given the ball away in the centre circle when losing control.

With Otamendi missing due to an ankle injury Orban was given the central roll in defence with Mustafi and apart from the goal was looking more than comfortable in his new roll. Javi Fuego was back in his familiar roll allowing Enzo Perez more opportunities to move forward to support the front runners.

More action though in the 28th minute when a delightful through ball from Andre Gomez found Alcacer, who's shot cum cross was then turned in by Rodrigo for Valencia's 2nd goal.  This should have been the start of a few more goals to warm up the crowd but as we know football doesn't work like that and within 5 minutes the visitors were again level.  A corner from the right found that man Hemed again to head home via a deflection from Andre Gomez easily out jumping the home defence to put the visitors on equal terms yet again. Another chance for the visitors went begging when they hit the crossbar from another header from a cross from the right.  Just prior to half time Barragan pulled up with what looked like a thigh strain and was replaced by Cancelo.  The team left the pitch at the break with whistles from the crowd which in my view were totally unwarranted.

The second period began with Valencia taking a bit more control and soon Javi  Fuego was taken off and replaced by Negredo, who had spent 2 years playing for Almeria in his earlier days.  He almost scored soon after coming on when a good ball from Rodrigo gave him an opportunity from a bad angle but his shot hit the side netting. It seems he could not reproduce the goal he scored in training seen on Youtube from the impossible angle.  Minutes later Rodrigo crashed a shot against the bar after good work again from Negredo who's presence together with Cancelo had really livened the team up. With 7 minutes to go the inevitable happened when after Gaya made a great run on the left and put over a killer cross for Negredo to devastate his old team mates with a powerful header to make the score 3.2.  The score remained the same and to be fair Almeria never really looked like changing the outcome in the second period due to the total dominance of the home team. It was a good feeling for a change not to be biting my nails in the closing stages as we were always the team looking more likely to add to the score.

Player Performances:
Alves 6.5   No fault on either goals and really did not have to make many telling saves and was not even given the opportunity to save a penalty.
Barragan 5.5    Had a really poor performance apart from the cross to set up the first goal. Looks as if he may be out for a while now and I think this is a position that needs strengthening urgently
Mustafi  7    His usual reliable self just gets on with his responsibilities without fuss and took charge of the defence with his quiet efficiency.
Orban 7  Fitted in well in place of Otamendi and had another good solid performance apart from being a little slow to pick up on the first goal.
Gaya  7.5  Had another great game and was sorely missed in the last game.  Caused all sorts of problems for the visitors defence as well as keeping it tight at the back.
Fuego 6.5   Did was was needed until replaced by Negredo to add more fire power
Parejo 7   Had one of his better games tonight spreading passes all over the pitch please keep up this level of performance.
Gomez 6.5    Made the first goal and generally had a solid performance until replaced by De Paul at fault with his marking from corners
Perez  6    Gave the ball away for the first goal with a lazy pass and generally looked out of sorts. I think he needs more time to settle in to La Liga and his new team, undoubtedly a great player but too many passes went astray.
Rodrigo  7.5 One of his best performances in my opinion, scored a goal and hit the crossbar and worked hard for the team
Alcacer  6.5  Worked well and was unlucky not to get a goal tonight, links up well with Rodrigo

 Cancelo 8  My man of the match,  this player should be playing every week, he really tore into the Almeria defence tonight and changed the balance of the team as soon as he came on put more telling crosses in in half a game than Barragan has done all season. Why he has not been playing more regular I cannot understand. Hopefully now with Barragan injured he will play each week.
Negredo 7.5  Made all the difference when he came on, scoring and maybe could have had more with a bit more luck, the goals will soon come I feel. Strong powerful player 
De Paul  N/A 

My conclusions.   We are not Real Madrid, we are not Barcelona. We do not have a Ronaldo, a Messi or suchlike and all the money to buy the best in the world  If this time last year we could have foreseen being third in the league I think we would have taken it.  We do not have a divine right to go out and hammer every team we meet and sometimes results have to be ground out like tonight. We have 3 more good points and next week against Sevilla is another game.  Lets get behind the team and manager and look forward to the second half of the season whatever it may bring. Football is a game it is live it is drama, it is unpredictable that is why it is the best sport in the world and why we all love it.
And please if you take the time to read this please leave a comment whether you agree or not.

1-0, m.11: Parejo. 1-1, m.13: Hemed. 2-1, m.28: Rodrigo. 2-2, m.33: Hemed. 3-2, m.83: Negredo.