Tag Archives: Lyon

England’s Jodie Taylor moves to French side Lyon

England’s Jodie Taylor has joined French side Lyon until the end of 2020, the club have announced.

The former Arsenal striker moves to France on a short-term deal from OL Reign in the United States.

The 34-year-old who has also had spells in Australia, Sweden, Canada and the USA will join fellow Lionesses Lucy Bronze, Nikita Parris and Alex Greenwood.

Lyon are currently in the Champions League and face Bayern Munich in a quarter-final in Bilbao on the 22nd August, where  Taylor will be eligible to play.

She told Lyon’s website:

“I can’t wait to play with my new team. I just finished my season with OL reign in the USA, but I kind of stay in the same family.

“I talked a lot with my English teammates like Lucy Bronze who has been at the club for a long time, and I couldn’t refuse the opportunity to play for one of the best teams in the world.”

Taylor has represented her country in the last two World Cups and was the top scorer at Euro 2017.

It has been quite a journey for the Birkenhead born player, who made her debut for Tranmere Rovers in 2002 at the age of 15. She scored in a 5-1 win over Wolves in the FA Women’s Cup fifth round and has never looked back since.

When Tranmere were relegated in 2004 Jodie accepted a four-year scholarship to Oregon State University. When she left Tranmere, she had an impressive record of 29 goals in 38 appearances, despite missing six months with a broken leg.

After playing for a host of sides in the States, she returned to England in 2011 and signed for Birmingham City but moved on to Lincoln Ladies on loan. Lincoln wanted to keep Taylor but she returned to her parent club Birmingham following a stint with Melbourne Victory.

Following spells with Sydney FC, Washington Spirit and Portland Thorns FC she joined Arsenal where she made twelve appearances for the North London Side.

Less than two years later Taylor left Arsenal to sign for Melbourne City on a short-term contract. OL Reign came in for her services in 2018 where she spent two years in America having made 22 appearances and scoring nine goals.

On the international front Taylor made her debut for England in August 2014 in the sides 4-0 friendly win over Sweden at Hartlepool. At the Euros in 2017 she won the highly acclaimed award of the Golden Boot with five goals in the tournament as England reached the semi-finals.

JT

UEFA confirm Champions/Europa league and Euro 2020 fixture plans

The return of Europe’s top competitions have been discussed at length since domestic leagues confirmed their return plans. Today at last clubs and fans were given details as to how the knockout stages will be played out.

The club tournaments will be completed in August, with the Europa League being held in Germany and the Champions League being held in Portugal. These will take place from the Quarter final stage.

UEFA confirmed that the 12 original host cities will stage matches in next summer’s Euro 2020 finals. The competition will start on the 11th June 2021. The pushed-back play-off matches will be played during the international breaks starting on the 8th October and the 12th November, respectively.

The Champions League will restart with the second-leg matches of the last 16 games left over. These will be played on the 7th and 8th of August. The games yet to be played are: Manchester City at home against Real Madrid, Chelsea away to Bayern Munich, Juventus at home against Lyon and Napoli, who take their impressive 1-1 away result into their home leg, against Barcelona. UEFA said it has yet to decide whether to stage the games at home grounds or at neutral venues.

 

The subsequent knockout rounds will be played over one leg and will be hosted in the city of Lisbon, at the Estádio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica and the Estádio José Alvalade, between the 12th to the 23rd August. The final has been scheduled for 23 August, also taking place in Lisbon.

The Estádio do Dragão in Porto and the Estádio Dom Afonso Henriques in Guimarães will also be added to the Lisbon venues for the Round of 16 should such measures be necessary.

The same applies to the Europa League which will resume the Quarter Finals on the 10th August. The remaining last 16 games will be played on the 5th and 6th of August. The venues will be stationed in Cologne, Duisburg, DĂĽsseldorf and Gelsenkirchen.

 

Istanbul and Gdansk, the original host cities for the Champions and Europa League finals respectively, will now stage next year’s finals in 2021.

UEFA stated:

“A decision will be made in due course on whether these matches for which the first leg has already been played will be staged at the home team’s venue or in Germany.

“Inter Milan v Getafe and Sevilla v Roma, whose first leg was also postponed, will be played as a single leg at a venue to be confirmed.”

The Women’s Champions League will also be a knockout tournament, in northern Spain between the 21st and 30th of August.

UEFA President Aleksander ÄŚeferin, said:

“I am delighted that we are able to resume almost all of our competitions. I am confident that we will not have to endure the fans’ absence for long and that they will be allowed into stadiums sooner rather than later.”

With many Women’s leagues not returning he was also keen to comment on the return on the Women’s Champions League:

“Particularly with the Women’s Champions League, it was important to send a strong signal that it is possible to complete this season, in a time where women’s sports have suffered substantially. This competition has exciting times ahead with the format change in 2021/2022 and we want to enhance the momentum in the women’s game, not lose it.”

Overall, with the return of the Premier League soon this is even more positive news for fans, so mark the dates in your calendar, the season is beginning to hot up again!

How to solve a problem like Fernandinho? 3 possible replacements

The clock is ticking at Manchester City, not on their time as a trophy-collecting force but on their time to replace maybe the most important cog in the city machine, Fernandinho

The Brazilian Dynamo, now 33, won’t have too many seasons left at the top level and the race is on to find a successor to the defensive midfielder’s throne, City will sincerely miss what he brings to the team and a replacement search is underway.

The Premier League champions seemingly have a world-class alternative in every position apart from the defensive midfield slot occupied by Fernandinho. His part in breaking up plays and starting lightning quick attacks can’t be underestimated and is sorely missed when he is absent from the side. Manager Pep Guardiola has used Fabian Delph and even John Stones in the position to limited success.

So who could City turn to? We look at 3 possible replacements for the Brazilian

  1. Ruben Neves

The most heavily linked player and with good reason, his displays in the Championship last season were very impressive and it’s thought that City assessed Neves in the summer but was maybe hesitant to pull the trigger and needed to see how he fared in the Premier League this season. Well, his season so far wouldn’t dissuade Pep from thinking he could fit into his incredible side, his passing from midfield and also his ability to read the game and break up play is kin to Fernandinho. Neves is also not shy to shoot from outside the box to devastating effect thus adding another facet to City’s already formidable attack. The Portuguese has experience of the Premier League and also the Champions League in his time with Porto, at 21 he has time to adapt to the role if needed. Neves’ signature will no doubt come with a hefty price tag but Manchester City’s power in the transfer market should be able to make any deal happen.

2. Tanguy Ndombele

The French midfielder 22, has caught the eye of every top club in Europe with dazzling displays in Ligue 1 and the Champions League with Lyon, the latter of which saw him come face to face with Manchester City in the group stage where Guardiola had a front row seat to see a possible replacement for the defensive midfield position.

Over the two ties Ndombele was a powerful force in the Lyon midfield, handling his role excellently against the Premier League juggernauts, he moved out of midfield with power and pace, set up chances and was named man of the match by Sky Sports in the 2-2 second fixture. City has been rumoured to have made contact with the French club about a possible move but will need to fight cross-city rivals Manchester United and Italian champions Juventus for the Frenchman’s signature.

3. Douglas Luiz/Ante Palaversa

Could the heir to Fernandinho be closer to home? 2 young talents on loan at Girona and Hadjuk Split respectively have been highly rated by Guardiola and with the Spaniard’s skill at player development, it could save City a lot of money and time if they could fill the role.

Douglas Luiz 20, joined City from Brazilian Giants Vasco Da Gama last season for ÂŁ10.8m and was a part of Citys pre-season squad before being sent out on loan to Girona in La Liga due to not being able to gain a work permit Much to Guardiola’s displeasure

“The manager from Brazil [Tite] and myself know more than the guys who decide he is not able to play. I am so sad and disappointed for Douglas because he could help us, play with us. He has shown many good things in training sessions and the reason why we spent a lot of money to buy him [£10.7m] is because he is a player with a huge capacity to play for us.”

Luiz has put in some great displays for Girona, most notably against Real Madrid, his attributes include his physicality and great technical ability along with his reading of the game which makes Douglas a good fit. Should Luiz obtain a work permit Guardiola could give the young Brazilian the chance he will be looking for.

Also in the City ranks is 18-year-old Croatian Ante Palaversa, signed on deadline day in January for ÂŁ4.3m from Hadjuk Split, the youngster came through the ranks from the youth team at Hadjuk, and is also a Croatian u19 player and captain. At 6″1, size is on his side, he can play in the defensive midfield position and also further forward making him versatile. Ante also has an eye for goal and is strong in the tackle giving the Croatian familiar qualities needed to play the Fernandinho role. Upon being signed in January Palaversa was immediately loaned straight back to Hadjuk Split for the remainder of this season and all of the 2019/20 season so he may be one for the future.

Whoever Manchester City decide to succeed Fernandinho, they have very big shoes to fill, but with Guardiola’s coaching ability and City’s track record in transfers it’s likely they will make the right decision.

Wayne Edge