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Zlatan Ibrahimovic is back as Manchester United's 'extra man'

 

Manchester United Update

 

EPL first place club Manchester United has resigned superstar Swedish striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic who will be the "extra man" for United following the Christmas holiday season said manager Jose Mourinho. Thirty-five-year-old Ibra who scored 28 goals in 48 matches for Man United last campaign, has signed a new one-year deal. Due to a knee injury, Ibrahimovic was released prematurely by the titan club in June 2017 after the season was ended.

 

"I am back to finish what I started. It was always mine and the club's intention for me to stay. I cannot wait to get back out on that Old Trafford pitch, but I also know that I have to take my time to make sure that I am ready. I have been working hard and will continue to do so to make sure I am in the best possible condition for my return to the pitch."

"Let him do his work, step by step and come back when he is ready," said Mourinho. "He won't be ready for the group phase of the Champions League. No chance of that. I just think he will be the extra man for us in the second part of the season. The second part of the season is normally January, after Christmas, when the transfer window reopens."

 

Ibrahimovic who initially was hired by Manchester United on a free transfer in July 2016, has been in rehab recuperating at United's training ground after knee surgery.

 

"A club like Manchester United has to show how big it is in details," said Mourinho. "This is a big detail. A player that gets injured with a Manchester United shirt, fighting for Manchester United, the club has to be there for him. I am really happy with both the club and player. Some talent you cannot waste”.

Manchester United v FK Rostov - UEFA Europa League Round of 16: Second Leg

 

United announced that Ibra would be wearing the number 10 shirt after new signing Romelu Lukaku took the 9 jersey that was previously the Swede's. Ibrahimovic will have competition for a forward place from £75m Man United signing Romelu Lukaku, Marcus Rashford, and Anthony Martial. Martial scored four times in 25 Premier League games for United last season, but the 21-year-old forward has netted twice in two substitute appearances this term. Although France international Martial was linked with a move from Old Trafford, Mourinho said he wants "more and more" from Martial.

"I hope he will be better this season than last," said the Portuguese Red Devils’ boss. "When you have some talent you cannot waste. When you are blessed with talent, you have to fulfill and explore it. You cannot be happy with just glimpses. That I am not going to change."

In the new season, Mourinho expects to see improvement from United midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan after having initially endured a slow start to his Manchester United career.

"He understands me and I understand him," added Mourinho about Mkhitaryan. "With his talent, this season will be even better."

Manchester United v AFC Bournemouth - Premier League

Wayne Rooney who recently left Old Trafford to his return to Goodison Park and his boyhood club Everton recently announced his retirement from international football. Mourinho said the former England captain "told me the night before", and that he understood the 31-year-old's former England and Manchester United captain’s reasons for doing so.

"He does it for Everton and his family," said Mourinho. "I realize, like many other people, when he retires how many times he plays, how many goals he scored, what he represents for football in this country."

The Red Devil’s will play their opening Champions League match in Group A on September 12 at home at Old Trafford against FC Basel after gaining a spot in the upcoming 2017 - 2018 Champions League Group Stages by winning the Europa League. Legendary Swedish football star Ibrahimovic starred for United last season but missed playing in Man United’s Europa League triumph in Stockholm after sustaining a serious knee injury against Anderlecht in the quarter-final second leg. 

Buy Champions League Manchester United v FC Basel Tickets, September 12, 2017, Manchester, UK

Buy Champions League Manchester United v Benfica Tickets, October 31, 2017, Old Trafford - Manchester, UK

Superstar Ibrahimovic, 35, made 46 appearances and scored 28 goals for the club during the 2016-17 England Premier League campaign. Ibrahimovic has won a trophy in each of the past 15 seasons of his career.

"We are delighted Zlatan is on the road to recovery and we are equally delighted to have his ambition and experience back with us. After his contribution last season he deserves our trust and we will be patient waiting for him to return. I have no doubt that he will be important in the second part of the season," said Red Devil’s boss Mourinho.

Reportedly, Ibrahimovic is being considered for a coaching role with the club when he retires from playing.  The veteran forward rejoins Mourinho’s United side that have steamrollered two 3 wins to open their Premier League campaign taking them to first place on the EPL Table. 

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Manchester United v RSC Anderlecht - UEFA Europa League Quarter Final: Second Leg

RSC Anderlecht v Manchester United - UEFA Europa League Quarter Final: First Leg

Sunderland v Manchester United - Premier League

The Manchester United Legends are back!

 

On Saturday, the Manchester United Legends play the Barcelona Legends at Old Trafford. Red Devils' Legends captain Bryan Robson’s side carry a two-goal lead into the tie having won the first leg 3-1 at Barca's Nou Camp.

 

Bryan Robson

 

“It’s nice to have a club with charisma like Barcelona coming and playing at Old Trafford, and the boys will be well up for it because the tradition between Man United and Barcelona in Europe is there for all to see. They’ve got some real good forwards and midfield players, and we’ve got some real good forwards in our squad, so it’ll be a competitive game.”

Edwin van der Sar 

"Of course it's always nice to go back to Old Trafford, I played there in Michael Carrick's testimonial match and I have played in a few other charity games. I'm looking forward to playing against Barcelona in September. Hopefully, we're not going to mess it up! [Laughs] Not many teams go away and win the first leg so we should be able to lift the trophy."

Manchester United Legends:

-  Bryan Robson (Manager)
-  Andrew Cole (Assistant Manager)
-  Raimond van der Gouw
-  Denis Irwin
-  Ronny Johnsen
-  Mikael Silvestre
-  Russel Beardsmore
-  Jesper Blomqvist
-  Wes Brown
-  Bojan Djordjic
-  Ji-sung Park
-  Karel Poborsky
-  Ben Thornley
-  Louis Saha
-  Ruud van Nistelrooy
-  Dion Dublin
-  Danny Webber
-  Dwight Yorke
-  Edwin van der Sar

Barcelona Legends:

-  Albert 'Chapi' Ferrer (Manager)
-  Eric Abidal
-  Frédéric Dehú
-  Luis Garcia
-  Xavi Guzmán
-  Jesús Angoy
-  Gaizka Mendieta
-  Andoni Goicoetxea
-  Patrick Kluivert
-  Juan Carlos Moreno
-  Aloisio Pires
-  Juan Carlos Rodriguez
-  Simao Sabrosa
-  F.X.Sanchez Jara
-  Sergi Barjuan
-  Juliano Belletti
-  Jofre Mateu
-  Edmilson
-  Edgar Davids

Wayne Rooney may leave Manchester United for China

WAYNE ROONEY MAY LEAVE MANCHESTER UNITED FOR CHINA

Wayne Rooney did no go with his Man Utd side to Saint Etienne to battle for a spot in the next round of the UEFA Europa League. Reportedly Rooney is open to moving to the Chinese Super League after being told by his boss Jose Mourinho that he is free to leave Manchester United although Mourinho made it clear that he wants Wazza to stay on until the end of his career. United would prefer to wait until the summer to sell Rooney, 31, even though the club captain is open to leaving before the CSL transfer window closes on February 28. United have named Antoine Griezmann as Rooney’s potential replacement and it remains probable the No.10 will see out his 13th campaign at Old Trafford. Rooney considered joining a Major League Soccer (MLS) club as his first choice but he does not expect a Stateside move to be an option while he is still under contract at United. Rooney’s current deal expires in June 2019.

The Chinese Super League (CSL) has shocked the global football world after spending an amazing £358.4m since the January transfer window opened. Some of the big names who will be competing in the CSL are Oscar, Carlos Tevez, Axel Witsel and John Obi Mikel. In addition former Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini will serve as manager of Hebei China Fortune while ex-Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas is boss at Shanghai SIPG. A year ago Ramires, Alex Texeira and Gervinho all headed to play for Far East clubs  Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney may be the latest big name to link up with a CSL side.

CSL clubs are allowed to have three foreign players in their starting line-ups and Tianjin Quanjian, Jiangsu Suning and Beijing Guoan are the only three clubs who currently have a slot available. Any club in Chinese football's top two tiers has until Tuesday, February 28 to complete a deal while China’s 3rd division has an extended window from March 1 - March 15. If Rooney decides to wait until the summer, the CSL transfer window will reopen on June 19 and close on July 14.

Rooney is already one of the ten top highest paid football players currently in action in Europe and the highest paid football player in the England Premier League.

Wayne Rooney's Manchester United record and honors

Premier League: 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2013
FA Cup: 2016
Football League Cup: 2006, 2010
FA Community Shield: 2007, 2010, 2011, 2016
UEFA Champions League: 2008
FIFA Club World Cup: 2008
Played: 549
Goals: 250

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The world's highest paid players

1. Carlos Tevez £615,000 per-week (Shanghai Shenua)
2. Oscar £400,000 (Shanghai SIPG)
3. Cristiano Ronaldo £365,000* (Real Madrid)
4. Gareth Bale £350,000* (Real Madrid)
5. Lionel Messi £336,000* (Barcelona)
6. Hulk £320,000 (Shanghai SIPG)
7. Wayne Rooney £300,000 (Manchester United)
8. Graziano Pelle £295,000 (Shandong Luneng)
9. Paul Pogba £290,000 (Manchester United)
10. Neymar £275,000* (Barcelona)

WEST HAM 0-2 MANCHESTER UNITED

Man Utd superstar striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic scores second goal against West Ham

PREMIER LEAGUE: WEST HAM UNITED 0-2 MANCHESTER UNITED

Manchester United win 1st match in 2017 to go within a point of 4th place on EPL Table

Jose Mourniho's Manchester United side got off to a winning start in the New Year as the Red Devils defeated 10 man West Ham 2-0 away at London Stadium to go within one point of fourth place with second half goals from sub Juan Mata assisted by teenager Marcus Rashford, and superstar striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic on Monday evening. Ibra has already scored more goals in all competitions than Manchester United's top goal scorer last season (Martial, 17). Amazing Man Utd goalie David de Gea gets credit for another clean sheet in his 250th appearance for the club. In Round 20 to date, Chelsea remain in first with 49 points; Liverpool are in second with 44 points, Manchester City are in third with 42 points, Arsenal are in fourth with 41 points, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United are tied in fifth with 39 points apiece. Everton is in seventh with 30 points, West Brom is in eighth with 29 points, AFC Bournemouth is in ninth with 25 points, Southampton is in tenth with 24 points.

Match Report

Juan Mata 63

Zlatan Ibrahimovic 78

Squads

Man United manager Jose Mourinho made five changes to his side from their last match with Jones, Rojo, Darmian, Carrick and Lingard coming in for Smalling, Fellaini, Martial, Bailly and Blind.West Ham manager Bilic brought in Obiang, Lanzini and Feghouli for Noble, Ayew and Carroll.

West Ham United

Randolph, Obiang, Reid, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Kouyate, Nordtveit, Antonio, Feghouli, Payet, Lanzini. Subs: Carroll, Adrian, Noble, Ayew, Fletcher, Fernandes, Quina.

Manchester United

De Gea, Valencia, Jones, Rojo, Darmian, Ander Herrera, Carrick, Pogba, Mkhitaryan, Ibrahimovic, Lingard. Subs: Mata, Martial, Smalling, Young, Rashford, Romero, Fellaini.

Referee: Mike Dean

Manchester United is enjoying a run of six Premier League victories with their 2-0 defeat of the Hammers. Juan Mata and Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored in East London to take Man United to within a point of fourth place. The controversial sending off of West Ham’s Sofiane Feghouli at 15 minutes after what looked like a hard but fair challenge resulted in a straight red card given by referee Mike Dean in front of a crowd of 57,000.

United manager José Mourinho admitted that the turning point of the match was the controversial call by referee Dean to send off Feghouli after a hefty challenge with Phil Jones that saw both men fight for a loose ball. Half-time arrived accompanied by a chorus of boos directed at Dean. Feghouli will now miss the Hammers' FA Cup third-round home tie against Manchester City on Friday. West Ham supporters showed their anger at the ref by chanting 'Mike Dean - it's all about you'. Dean has shown 14 red cards in the EPL since the start of last season - at least six more than any other referee.

The match was scoreless at half‑time when Mourinho brought on Juan Mata, and then Marcus Rashford who combined to score the opening goal of the match. Mata has been involved in 40 Premier League goals (25 goals, 15 assists) since his Man United debut. Only Wayne Rooney with 46 Premier League goals (29 goals, 17 assists) has a better record in that time.

United are steadily improving match by match hot on the heels of the other top four contenders and gaining momentum with every win including their victory against West Ham only 48 hours after their previous win against Middlesbrough.

After the game, West Ham boss Slaven Bilic was still angry with Dean but proud of his men.

"I was pleased with the performance, we fought hard and gave everything. I told my players that if we did this we will be all right in the table. Ten men against a team like this is very hard - but we had chances. I am disappointed with the result and frustrated by how we lost it, but I am proud of my players."

Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho is enjoying his longest winning run in all competitions (seven) since January 2014 when in charge of Chelsea.

"It was hard for us to think well with one more man - and it was very hard for them physically. I was happy with my choices in Juan Mata and Marcus Rashford, they gave us what we needed. Rashford is very professional and very mature. He is a Manchester United player with Manchester United DNA. I don't feel sorry for West Ham - I didn't watch the decisions. I think if you talk about decisions, we are the champions of bad decisions."

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Coming up next, West Ham will be back in action on Friday when they host fellow Premier League side Manchester City in the FA Cup third round. Manchester United begin their defence of the coveted FA Cup trophy at home against Championship club Reading, managed by former Man United defender Jaap Stam, on Saturday. Buy legal, guaranteed FA Cup tickets for West Ham v Manchester City and Manchester United v Reading tickets FA Cup tickets now safely and securely online from LiveFootballTickets.com!

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Man Utd superstar striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic

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Juan Mata scores opening goal against West Ham for Man United

Juan Mata celebrates scoring opening goal against West Ham for Manchester United

Man Utd No. 1 goalkeeper David de Gea gets credit for another clean sheet

Jose Mourniho's Man United side defeated West Ham 2-0

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Jose Mourinho v NewcaSTLE

Jose Mourinho, FC Chelsea

Champions League : Chelsea v FC Schalke 04

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho criticised his side following their defeat saying that they deserved the loss and it cost the London Blues top place on the Premiership Table.

Chelsea lost due to second-half goals by Yoan Gouffran and Loic Remy.

"I didn't like it. I think we deserved to loose," Mourinho said.

"We had a couple of good chances to score the equaliser, but they were in the game more than us, they fought more than us and they were much more committed than us.

"They were the best team on the pitch. If someone had to win, I think it was Newcastle, not us.

"The game was quite easy to play in the first half, but we were not sharp, we were not intense with the ball. So we let the game go, waiting for a chance to score a goal or a chance to concede and lose it, and that is exactly what I was telling the players at half-time."

It was only Chelsea's second league defeat of the season, bringing an end to a nine-game unbeaten run in all competitions.

"I don't need to lose a match to be aware of [how competitive the league is]," said the former Real Madrid coach, whose side host Schalke in the Champions League on Wednesday.

"It is something I know and pass on to my players every game. I know exactly how it is. The race is there for everybody. If Arsenal win [against Liverpool] today, they open the gap. I didn't like my team today."

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FC Chelsea Transfer News : Chelsea Tickets

Jose Mourinho 2

Jose Mourinho, FC Chelsea

Transfer News : Chelsea

The summer transfer window began on 11 June for England Barclays Premier League clubs and ends on 31 August.

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Manager

Out: Rafael Benitez; In: Jose Mourinho

In

Andre Schurrle (Bayer Leverkusen) Undisclosed
Mario van Ginkel (Vitesse Arnhem) Undisclosed
Mark Schwarzer (Fulham) Free

Out
Yossi Benayoun
 Released
Florent Malouda (Trabzonspor) Free
Paulo Ferreira Released
Ross Turnbull Released
Thibaut Courtois (Atletico Madrid) Loan
Marko Marin (Sevilla) Loan
Oriol Romeu (Valencia) Loan