Arsenal and Barcelona faced off in the first leg of the Champions League last 16 tie and not surprisingly, it was the Spanish club that managed to come out on top with the triumph as the team of Luis Enrique claimed a 2-0 victory over the Premier League team.
Celtic have been looking to sign Sporting Lisbon ace Carlos Mane for quite a while now, but it looks like the Scottish club will to face competition from other clubs for his signature.
The 21-year-old is highly rated across European football. Rather than move straight to a big league, Mane is thought to be considering the possibility of joining a club where he will get regular first-team opportunities. Celtic, Middlesbrough, and Monaco are some of the clubs interested in his services.Mane has not ruled out the possibility of joining Celtic, who have the opportunity to provide him with Champions League football.
England have been drawn against Wales in the group stages of the Euro 2016.
The match between the two nations from the British Isles will be a much anticipated encounter. It will also pit England against the most expensive player in world football – Gareth Bale. The Real Madrid winger has been a major influence in the team’s qualification to the competition. For years, Wales have struggled to reach finals of major tournaments. This was despite having top-class wingers like Ryan Giggs. Chris Coleman has managed to get the team into the Euro 2016 in impressive fashion.
England prepare for the game against Spain with a number of key players out injured. It presents a lot of difficulties for manager Roy Hodgson, who has taken the situation in a positive frame of mind.
Roy Hodgson will leave the England team into the Euro 2016 despite his future being uncertain. The contract of the former Liverpool boss comes to an end after the tournament.
Negotiations are yet to begin over an extension and it is largely believed due to Hodgson’s poor performances in major tournaments. After being in charge of the national team during the Euro 2012 and World Cup 2014, Hodgson will not be satisfied with his own performances. The Euro 2012 finished respectably with England reaching the quarter-finals but they could not get past even the group stage at the World Cup.
Alex Ferguson is of the view that Ally McCoist, the previous manager of the Rangers FC, actually went about his job quite well in the duration he was in charge and he does not deserve all the criticism that has been poured on him in the last few months.
Rangers suffered a number of defeats under McCoist the previous season and their bid to make it to the top tier of Scottish football took a hit.
Aston Villa’s good run of form towards the end of the campaign has also been a major boost for the England national team.
Traditionally, Villa have always had a number of English players in their squad. To see them doing extremely well under the management of Tim Sherwood is a boost for manager Roy Hodgson, who looks to have turned the corner with the national team. After a very poor World Cup had put his future in doubt, Hodgson has seen England go on a spectacular winning run that will see them qualify for the Euro 2016 without any trouble.
Aston Villa secured a 3-3 draw at home against one of their relegation rivals – Queens Park Rangers – and this result was largely down to the brilliance of striker Christian Benteke. He scored his second Aston Villa hat-trick to help the club get at least a point from the encounter.
After having been injured for much of the season, Benteke has been making a huge difference in the last few matches. He has already taken his tally to seven goals in the last five matches, but none were more important than the three at Villa Park during the weekend.
England failed to make it eight consecutive victories after only managing a 1-1 draw against Italy in a friendly match, but manager Roy Hodgson was very pleased man after this match.
After coming under heavy criticism following a disappointing World Cup, the former Liverpool boss has managed to oversee spectacular run of form. England had won all their matches – since the World Cup – leading up to this friendly. Andros Townsend provided the equaliser on the night and England appeared to be disappointed by the draw. Still, it is eight matches unbeaten for the national team.
The Premier League is already known as one of the most marketable football leagues in the world with receipts of just over £ 3 billion from TV companies for the next two years.
Another milestone has been achieved after the league announced the results of TV money agreed for the period starting from 2016-17 and going to the next three years. A 70 % jump in the amount agreed has been seen as the TV companies will now be paying just over £ 5 billion for three years. This is an astronomical sum of money that will help the league attract the best players in the world.