There are widespread reports that former Brazilian international Julio Baptista is set to sign for Championship strugglers Bolton Wanderers.
Bolton who have yet to win a match in the Championship, bolstered their striking options over the summer bringing in Adam Le Fondre and Aaron Wilbraham from Cardiff City and Bristol City respectively, as well as completing the loan signing of Adam Armstrong from Newcastle United.
Whilst they are 3 known names in English football and have all scored goals at Championship level in the past, they have struggled so far this season and it looks like manager Phil Parkinson is looking to bring in more experience to try and help his Wanderers side climb off the foot of the table and give them every chance of staying in the division.
Julio Baptista – The Brazilian who plied his trade in the MLS with Orlando City last season, was released when his contract option was refused by the club in November 2016 and he became a free agent.
Baptista has played previously in England, joining Arsenal on loan from Real Madrid in 2006.
He can play in a number of positions including just behind the striker or he can operate from the left wing, which gives Phil Parkinson options in his squad. Having made over 350 appearances for major clubs around the world, he could be a useful addition to the Bolton ranks and help them secure Championship football for another season.
Bolton Wanderers fans would you like to see Julio Baptista sign for your club? Would he provide useful experience to your side? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section…
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Leicester City have made a poor start to the current 2017/18 Premier League season having won just one of their opening three games with the other two coming in as losses.
With this in mind and the fact that the transfer window has slammed shut should Craig Shakespeare go after a free agent to bolster the defence of his squad?
The free agent that Leicester could make a move for is Bacary Sagna who is the versatile right-back that Leicester could be looking at adding to the squad. Sagna will bring with him a wealth of experience at the top of the game having played for Arsenal, Manchester City and he also made 65 appearances for the France senior team.
Sagna is available to join another club outside the transfer window as he is a free agent after leaving City earlier this summer and he is set to be one of the most in-demand free agents on the market.
The 34-year-old spent three seasons at City after joining from Arsenal on a free transfer, making 85 appearances in all competitions for the Etihad club during his time there.
The right-back started 17 Premier League games last season, but his contract at the Etihad was not extended when it expired in June with City bringing in two new right-backs in Kyle Walker and Danilo.
Leicester boss Craig Shakespeare is keen to bring in cover and competition for regular right-back Danny Simpson, and Sagna would fit the bill as he would have no problem settling in having spent the last 10 years playing in the Premier League.
Do you think Bacary Sagna would be a good addition to the Leicester City team? Let us know in the comments section below.
Before the international break many saw Ben Woodburn as a player who had potential but isn’t ready for the level of the Premier League yet.
Two Wales games later and suddenly Woodburn has burst onto the international scene scoring a vital winner against Austria from outside the box just four minutes after coming on and then tonight he provided the assist for Robson-Kanu’s opener in the 2-0 win against Moldova away from home.
This is a pretty special feat for someone of just 17 years old and it’s hard to believe that the young lad has done more than Gareth Bale in the last two international games.
Surely it won’t be long until Woodburn will be playing for Liverpool particularly as Jurgen Klopp seems to be an admirer of the young welshman. Before the hype can really start surely we must wait and see if the lad can kick it in the Premier League?
With his recent performances can it be seen that Woodburn is the hottest prospect in the league? I would argue that he has some way to go before he can pip the likes of Marcus Rashford and Dele Alli but surely he is going in the right direction.
Do you think Woodburn is the real deal or just another hyped up kid who hasn’t earned his reputation yet? Let us Know in the comments section below.
Chelsea made the signing of Alvaro Morata from Real Madrid in the summer which was the replacement for Diego Costa, despite the Spanish international being named in the Chelsea Premier League squad.
Despite finding the back of the net on 20 occasions last season for the SW6 outfit, it seems that manager Antonio Conte deems the striker surplus to requirements, having spent heavily on bringing in Morata this summer.
Many touted Costa to join former club Atletico Madrid this summer, but with the Spanish giants under a transfer ban for breaching FIFA rules that move couldn’t happen, but Atletico could rekindle interest in the striker in the January window.
With Spain looking set to qualify for Russia 2018, it would be in the interest of Costa to try and sort things out with manager Antonio Conte to ensure he has every chance of getting on the plane for the World Cup next summer.
Having scored many goals for ‘The Blues’ over the past 3 seasons, its clear that he has been a major part of Chelsea success as he has lifted 2 Premier League titles and an English League Cup whilst at the club, and despite the club making a new signing in his position this summer he could still prove to be a useful to have playing for the club.
Chelsea fans would you play Costa in the Premier League? Do you want to see him stay at Stamford Bridge? Let us know in the comments section…
Go back to the 10th May 2016 and West Ham were just saying goodbye to Upton Park after beating Manchester United 3-2 which secured a sixth place finish for The Hammers. Slaven Bilić was regarded as a god who was to be immortalised in the history of the club while bringing great times to East London. It was also the season where Dimitri Payet played the football that got whispers of a Real Madrid move on the horizon.
Fast forward just over a year later and life is much different for those at West Ham. Dimitri Payet has left the club for Marseille after refusing to play for The Hammers after initially being refused a move, West Hams move to the Olympic Stadium has been filled with controversy after security fears and a lack of atmosphere, it also doesn’t help that they can’t win a game there. With all that and many more problems Slaven Bilić finds himself facing huge pressure and there has been rumours that he almost faced the sack after the 3-0 loss away at Newcastle. The pressure is justified considering West Ham have lost their opening three games conceding ten goals.
Rafel Benitez 5/2
Having just beaten West Ham 3-0 Benitez may have sealed Bilić’s fate. Benitez is the joint favourite to take over the job should Bilić face the sack. It could be seen as an exciting project for Benitez seeing as he is unhappy at Newcastle after receiving little funds for their first Premier League season since being relegated in 2016. The money on offer and the promise of funds may be too good for Benitez to turn down.
Roberto Mancini 5/2
Former Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini is the joint favourite to come for the West Ham job if they choose to part ways with Slaven Bilić. The current Zenit St Petersburg manager would be a great addition and comes with the history of winning trophies including the Premier League with City. However, Mancini has only just joined Zenit this year and may be reluctant to give up the money he is rumoured to be on at the Russian club and also West Ham with all due respect may be too much of a step down for someone who has won the Premier League.
Frank Lampard 33/1
An outsider for the job is Frank Lampard who of course has strong links to The Hammers having been their as a child and also made his professional debut at Upton Park. The former England player has made no secret of his desire to go into management and would be eager to get a job like West Ham. However, with no managerial experience West Ham may be reluctant to take such a gamble on Lampard when their Premier League status is at risk.
Let us know who you feel should become the next manager at West Ham or if you feel that Bilić should be given more time in the comments section below.