Eredivisie: RKC Waalwijk 1 Roda JC 0

24 August 2012 22:24

RKC Waalwijk continued their impressive start to the Dutch Eredivisie season on Friday with a 1-0 win at home over Roda JC.

After beginning their campaign with a win over PSV and following that with a draw against ADO Den Haag, RKC made it seven points out of nine thanks to victory at the Mandemakers Stadion.

Midfielder Robert Braber scored the only goal of the game nine minutes into the second half to delight the home supporters.

The result moves RKC to the top of the Eredivisie table by a point, although they are likely to be removed from top spot as the weekend progresses.

Roda, meanwhile, are still searching for their first win of the new season, and are bottom of the table with just one point from their opening three games.

RKC are next in action against Heracles next Saturday, while Roda host Willem II the same day.

Falcao backs AVB for Spurs success

24 August 2012 21:32

Radamel Falcao believes his former coach Andre Villas-Boas will be a big success at Tottenham.

Falcao shone under Villas-Boas at Porto as the Portuguese side claimed a league, cup and Europa League treble in 2010/11 before both went their separate ways.

The Colombian signed for Atletico Madrid, while Villas-Boas joined Chelsea, and although that move failed to work out for the Portuguese coach, the Atletico target man is sure his former boss will be hit at new club Tottenham.

“Villas-Boas is a great coach,” he told Goal.com. “He is very young, very obsessive with detail, he feels and breathes football.

“I don’t know what went wrong at Chelsea, and it’s difficult for me to assess the situation as I don’t know the details, but I know him and I know he will do well at Spurs or wherever he goes.”

Falcao was linked with Chelsea after Villas-Boas moved to Stamford Bridge, and has been associated with a possible Premier League switch this year but he insisted he has no desire to play in England at this stage of his career.

“I don’t really dream about the Premier League,” Falcao said. “I know it’s followed worldwide but I really just think of the Spanish league with Atletico. My mind is not set on another league right now.

“I have a four-year contract, therefore I will stay at Atletico. That’s what I know at the moment.”

Having won the Europa League at Porto under Villas-Boas in 2010/11, Falcao repeated the feat last term for Diego Simeone’s side and became the first player in the history of the competition to finish as top goalscorer in two successive years.

“Obviously, the best moment of the season was winning the Europa League,” the striker said. “I had some very nice moments during the season, but that one stands out above the rest.”

And he was full of praise for Simeone, with whom he also worked at River Plate earlier in his career.

“Simeone is a great coach. He is passionate about football, analyses our rivals thoroughly, knows his tactics and never leaves anything to chance. He’s a winner,” he said.

O´Neill holds high hopes for Fletcher

24 August 2012 21:16

Sunderland manager Martin O’Neill has backed new signing Steven Fletcher to score plenty of goals after his arrival from Wolves.

The Scot, who has scored 22 Premier League goals over the past two seasons, is believed to have cost the Wearside club as much as 12 million pounds.

And O’Neill expects the sizeable fee to be paid back by the 25-year-old’s performances on the pitch.

“I think Steven will be terrific for us. He’s underrated, but not by me,” O’Neill told reporters.

“I think he’s capable of scoring goals and linking play which is very important to us, and I think at 25 years of age he’s got room to improve and get better.

“I’m delighted to have him for the next few seasons.”

The Northern Irishman remained tight-lipped, however, on following up Fletcher’s acquisition with a potential swoop for Manchester City pair Adam Johnson and John Guidetti.

“As good as they are, I don’t think our players can do it on their own and the more help we can get there the better,” he added.

“I’m still trying to improve the team, obviously. Like everything else we need some more help and we’re trying to provide that and get that there before next Friday evening.”

Carrera: Conte ban will not distract us

24 August 2012 21:08

Juventus caretaker coach Massimo Carrera says his players will not be distracted by the off-field turmoil surrounding manager Antonio Conte.

Carrera, who has not lost a game since taking over, has stepped into the role while Conte serves a 10-month ban for his involvement in the Scommessopoli match-fixing scandal.

Carrera, however, insisted the problems facing Conte will have no bearing on his side’s preparation for their Serie A season opener against Parma on Saturday.

“We’re not disturbed at all by the event,” Carrera said. “Antonio is the first one of us all who goes onto the pitch and does what he’s always done, motivating everyone.

“We’re not distracted at all.”

Carrera did concede that Conte would be sorely missed on match days by the Italian champions, who went through last season unbeaten.

“The coach’s presence in a match is definitely important,” he said.

“Antonio motivates our players during the training sessions and he tries to do the same during matches, so there’s always need for some advice on the pitch during a match, even if the players are top-level champions.

“I can say that also thanks to my experience. I will try to use my experience as a football player to help them.

“Our only focus from the beginning of the season has been working well and every time we go onto the pitch we’re not interested at all in what is happening off the pitch.

“We only want to work hard to be at our best when we will be playing matches.”

Terry selection in Hodgson´s plans

24 August 2012 20:59

England manager Roy Hodgson says he plans to select former captain John Terry for upcoming World Cup qualifiers.

England will face Moldova and Ukraine in September, with Hodgson yet to name his squad.

The centre-back is set to face a disciplinary hearing regarding the use of alleged racist abuse towards QPR defender Anton Ferdinand, an accusation Terry was cleared of in court in July.

And Hodgson, who is set to name his England squad for the double-header on Thursday, has revealed that he will recall the Chelsea captain to his squad if the defender is fit.

“As far as I know, I can select him at the moment, and I will be selecting him,” Hodgson said.

“I don’t really have any comment about the rest of it.

“Time will take its toll. I just know I can select him.”

The decision to include Terry could be taken out of Hodgson’s hands before the squad announcement if the Football Association, who have not made the date for the hearing public, find the 31-year-old guilty of the allegations.