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Emirates Cup 2015 Line-Up Confirmed

emirates_cup2015The  Emirates Cup has quickly become one of the best pre-season touraments and the 2015 edition is shaping up to have some great games.

Olympique Lyonnais, Villarreal and VfL Wolfsburg will join Arsenal for the Emirates Cup 2015 on Saturday, July 25 and Sunday, July 26.

One of the highlights will be Nicklas Bendtner’s return to the Emirates Stadium with Bundesliga side Wolfsburg, who will take on Santi Cazorla’s former club Villarreal in the opening match of the tournament at 2pm on Saturday, July 25. Arsenal will then host Lyon at 4.20pm.

The Demise Of Inter Milan

inter-championsleagueIt will be a strange season in Milan next year as both Milan and Inter will miss out on European football for the first time in 60 years.

While only Real Madrid have won more European Cups than AC Milan‘s seven, the red side of the city has not been a real European power since 2007. Inter on the other hand were crowned champions of Europe as recently as five years ago.

In a memorable night at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium in Madrid five years ago the Inter side that defeated Bayern Munich 2-0 in the Champions League final contained Javier Zanetti, Esteban Cambiasso, Wesley Sneijder, Samuel Eto’o, a healthy blend of experience and top class talent which fired Inter to the pinnacle of Europe.

Mourinho-WengerArsene Wenger and Jose Mourinho will renew their rivalry on 2 August when Premier League champions Chelsea and FA Cup winners Arsenal meet at Wembley in the FA Community Shield, the official opening of the 2015-16 football season in England.

While it’s technically a friendly, this is a match that neither Mourinho or Wenger will want to lose. Both teams are expected to challenge for the title next season, and the winner will take an early lead in the head games that these managers like to play with each other.

Rafa-BenitezThe Rafael Benitez era in Naples ended in misery as his side failed to secure a Champions League spot on the final day of the Serie A season.

Victory over third-placed Lazio at home would have sent Napoli into the Champions League qualifying round in August, but they lost 4-2 and will instead play in the Europa League.

It could have been so different though if Gonzalo Higuain, who is linked with a big money move away from Napoli this summer, had not squandered a chance to put Napoli up 3-2 with only 14 minutes remaining, but he blazed his penalty over the crossbar and Napoli folded soon after.

RVP-and-RooneyPersistent rumors will not go away that Champions League finalists Juventus want Manchester united striker Robin van Persie to join them this summer, and it appears that United boss Louis van Gaal will not stand in RVP’s way if he wants a move.

After a disappointing season, it appears that the 31-year-old striker will not be seen as United’s first-choice striker next season, and all indications are that United do not want to offer van Persie an extension on his contract which ends next summer..

Barca-Sopa-WinnersLionel Messi scored another wonder goal as Barcelona moved a step closer to completing the treble on Saturday night with a 3-1 victory over Athletic Bilbao in the Spanish Copa del Rey final. That is how dominant the are. This Barca side is on the cusp of being even better than the 2011 Pep Guardiola side and I did not think that was possible.

messi is possibly playing the best football of his career at the moment and the addition of Suarez and Neymar gives Barca an attacking threat that even the 2011 did not have . Barca can still pass you to death, but with that attacking triumvirate they can also be deadly on the counter-attack now.

Historic FA Cup Win For Arsenal

AFC-FA-Cup-WinA brilliant Arsenal performance at Wembley on Saturday saw the Gunners coast to the biggest English FA Cup final win in 21 years. After escaping relegation, Tim Sherwood brought his Villa side to Wembley looking to win the FA Cup for the first time since 1957, but left in dejection following a 4-0 hammering.

Surprise starter Theo Walcott put Arsenal ahead at the end of a first half in which the Londoners dominated, Per Mertesacker scored the third and substitute Olivier Giroud rounded off the win in the final minutes. But the pick of the goals undoubtedly came from Alexis Sanchez, who hammered a 25-yard screamer in off the bar just after the restart.

Emirates_NightArsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis says the Gunners face a difficult task getting the balance right in the transfer market this summer.

Arsene Wenger insists he has money to spend ahead of next season but claims he will only make top-quality additions.

And Gazidis says the north London club are very aware of the potential to upset the balance in a harmonious squad with too many new additions. He told Arsenal Player:

“We’ve got a good financial position at the club, so we’re really healthy going into the summer.

Chelsea-ChampionsDespite winning the league in a canter this season, Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho says that he still needs to add some fresh faces to his squad ahead of next season.

Mourinho’s champions finished eight points ahead of last season’s winners Manchester City after leading the title race from start to finish, with the Portuguese tactician already turning his thoughts to his next challenges.

Speaking in Bangkok as Chelsea arrived for a postseason tour, Mourinho hinted that he would not look to make big changes to his squad and stressed that any new arrivals would not be signed to replace his current star names.

icc2015The 2015 International Champions Cup in North America has gotten a little tougher as Portuguese champions Benfica will replace FC Porto. The swap means that the ICC 2015 will now feature six domestic champions (Benfica, Chelsea, PSG, Barcelona, LA Galaxy and Club America).

Benfica will play the same schedule originally set for FC Porto, including a match against the New York Red Bulls at Red Bull Arena on Sunday, July 26.