Franco Di Santo reckons the top tier Football in Germany is quite intense, probably a little more than that in England.
If Di Santo had made this statement some time back, it would have been considered ridiculous, but, the way the English teams have performed in the Champions League over the last couple of years, it seems the Argentina international is not off the mark.
There were only a couple of English teams in the Round of 16 in the previous season’s Champions League and neither of them managed to advance to the quarters.
When asked to compare the leagues in Germany and England in an interview, Di Santo said, “Frankly speaking, I had not expected Bundesliga to be that intense, but, having played in it for a full season now, I would say it’s more intense in comparison to any other league I have played in my career so far. As a player; you are under pressure all the time.”
“The training regimes are also quite different in the two countries. They have a different philosophy back there in UK. They don’t put that much pressure on the body of the players. There is more emphasis on rest. In Germany, it’s not like that. We have to train quite a bit and I have realized it’s beneficial in terms of stamina.”
Some of the stadiums built for the World Cup 2014 in Brazil are fast turning out into a major financial disaster. Unable to bear the huge operational and maintenance costs of the World Cup stadiums, a few have already come into the market on sale. Natal’s Dunas arena is one of the stadiums available for purchase. The stadium hosted four games during the World Cup tournament. Since then, however, it has struggled to attract crowds due to the lack of high-profile matches with a lot of attendances. Despite Brazil exporting a lot of players the rest of the world, it does not necessarily have a league with high attendance figures.
Even the top matches involving the likes of Corinthians and São Paulo struggled to fill up the massive stadiums built during the World Cup. The stadiums were constructed at a cost of huge expenses with most of the funding coming from the taxes. Brazil are reported to have spent around $ 3.6 billion in constructing the stadiums. They total 12 in number but only a handful are running close to breakeven. Some of the stadiums – like in Brasilia – have not hosted five events since the World Cup came to a close. This led to widespread protests even during the tournament, but Brazilian public have not been able to prevent Fifa running away with record profits as a result of this tournament.
Greece are mulling at the possibility of offering Sergio Markarian a role as the national team manager. The 70-year-old recently left his job as the national team manager of Peru. He has been appointed after the recommendation from former Fulham midfielderGiorgosKaragounis, who is now the current technical director of the Greek national team.
Claudio Ranieri recently departed the Greek team after a run of poor results since his appointment just after the World Cup. The Greek FA were aware that the next appointment was going to be extremely important. Hence, the task of finding a suitable replacement was given toKaragounis.
Karagounis played underMarkarian when the latter was the manager at Panathinaikos FC. Despite being a South American,Markarian is expected to lead the Greece national team with a lot of passion.
Giorgios Karagounis has been a free agent since he was released by Fulham at the end of the previous season and a few months ago reports began emerging claiming that the former midfielder was thinking about making a return to the playing field but those rumors did not last very long as Karagounis is starting a career as a coach instead of a player.
The playing career of Karagounis has seen him performing with Inter Milan, Benfica and Fulham just to name a few of his clubs but it has been with his country where Karagounis has really managed to make an impact as Karagounis was the captain of Greece for over 2 years.
Former Fulham midfielder Giorgos Karagounis has announced his retirement from the game in order to focus on his role as the football director with the Greece national team. The Europeans recently appointed former Chelsea boss Claudio Ranieri as their new manager. This was after Fernando Santos stepped down from his role after the World Cup 2014. Karagounis is widely regarded as one of best players of his generation from Greece. Ranieri wasted no time in having him on board to help him with the national team. One of the immediate tasks for Ranieri will be to get the team into Euro 2016 finals.
The national team definitely has made a disastrous start to life in the Ranieri after losing two out of the opening three matches. They have taken only one point from these three matches and already faced the prospect of missing out on an automatic qualification spot. This is after the fantastic start made by the likes of Northern Ireland, who have a 100% record. Karagounis goes out from the game after having achieved a lot including winning the Euro 2004. Not many expected Greece to win this competition, but it was made possible with the quality from players like Karagounis.
Karagounis says that it is a delight to have enjoyed such an illustrious playing career. Now he is focusing on his role with the national team. “I am officially retiring from football. I wasn’t planning on retiring – I was training on my own and considering my last move. However, after talking with the FA president and meeting [coach] Claudio Ranieri – as well as receiving calls from my former team-mates who wanted me to return – I made up my mind. For now, I will mainly be with the seniors in the role of liaison between players and coach,” said the former Fulham man.
Walter Mazzarri was finally happy man after seeing his Inter Milan team manage a 7-0 rout of Sassuolo in the Italian Serie A during the weekend. Inter have undergone massive changes over the summer including the arrival of players like Vidic on a free transfer. However, there continues to be doubts about Mazzarri’s ability to take the team back to the top of the table. The former Napoli manager failed to get the club back into the Champions League last season despite a promising start. Mazzarri has once again managed to get the team playing in excellent fashion at the start of this campaign.
Inter failed to win on the opening day after a 0-0 draw with Torino, which once again raised suspicions about Mazzarri. The manager, who signed a new contract extension only in the summer much to the surprise of many, has pulled off a 7-0 victory in the second match. The 21-year-old Icardi, who appears to have a bright future ahead of him, was the star of the show after securing a hat-trick. Players like Osvaldo, who have been signed in the summer from Southampton, also managed to get on the scoresheet. After the encounter, Mazzarri reflected on this excellent performance by saying that this is the way he wants Inter to be playing every week.
“We had already ended last season with this style of football, though a few players have changed. I said during the week that the wide midfielders had to pressure quickly and push forward, be aggressive, as that is the football I like. Playing in this way and with this tempo is the ideal of football in my view. We hope to continue like this. Our objective is to always maintain this attitude, determination and aggression on the field. We need to be fast, move the ball around quickly,” said Mazzarri.