Barcelona midfielder Arturo Vidal has hinted that he would love to work under Antonio Conte again amid rumours he will join Inter this January.
A report in Gazzetta dello Sport reiterates Inter boss Conte has highlighted the central midfield area for strengthening this coming window.
The Chilean scored in Barcelona’s 5-1 win over Real Valladolid in a La Liga match this week.
But before Tuesday clash, he started just one match this season for the Blaugrana and played little over 200 minutes.
Vidal is said to be unhappy at his playing time at Barcelona and, according to Football Espana, could be open to a January move to Conte’s side, while the same is true for Matic – even if only one is likely to join.
“Interest from Inter? I lived very nice moments with Antonio Conte,” Vidal admitted in an interview with Chilean outlet El Mercurio, as cited by Marca.
“The quality leap I enjoyed was thanks to him. In football the most important thing is trust and when a Coach of that prestige gives it to you, then you improve a lot.”
Last week, Calciomercato cited Gazzetta dello Sport as reporting that the central midfielder could now join the Milanese club this January, along with Manchester United midfielder Nemanja Matic.
In August, a report in FcInterNews claimed that the Nerazzurri had received positive signals from the Catalan giants over the summer months over a possible move and that Vidal himself is open to the move.
The Chilean looked set for Inter last summer until the Blaugrana swooped in late to sign him from Bayern Munich.
Vidal, has previously consistently reiterated his desire to stay at the Camp Nou – where he played an important role in winning the title last season.
However, the arrival of Dutch international Frenkie De Jong at the club has pushed him further down the pecking order in Ernesto Valverde’s side, and Inter boss Antonio Conte is waiting to make an offer should he look to move on from Catalonia.
With two years still to run on his contract, Vidal will not be a cheap option, and the Blaugrana are likely to demand in the region of €25m for the 32-year old, if Conte wants to be reunited with the player he won three league titles with at Juventus.
“I would follow him everywhere, even in war,” he was once quoted as saying about the Coach.
Frank Lampard was pleased with the performances of teenage duo Marc Guehi and Billy Gilmour despite Chelsea’s 2-1 defeat to Manchester United in the Carabao Cup round of 16.
Chelsea’s seven game-winning run came to an end at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday as a Marcus Rashford double cancelled out Michy Batshuayi’s strike to send Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side in to the quarter-finals of the competition.
Lampard took the opportunity to rotate his squad for the match, making six changes in total with Guehi replacing fellow academy graduate Fikayo Tomori in central defence and Gilmour coming into midfield in place of Mateo Kovacic.
Although Lampard was disappointed to see his team exit the competition, he took encouragement from the performances of Guehi, 19, and Gilmour, 18, saying that both proved themselves capable of playing at the top-level, report the Metro.
‘I thought Billy and Marc Guehi were both really good, Marc was as comfortable as anything,’ Lampard told BBC Radio 5 Live after the match.
‘I’ve come away from tonight – obviously, we don’t want to lose and we know where this is in the competition – but at the same time, there’s lots of positives.
‘In the bigger picture, Marc Guehi’s performance showed that he’s more than comfortable at this level and Billy the same, he was bright.
‘It was a tough first half for him because he was trying to get free, trying to be positive and it wasn’t quite happening for him in a way, but I’m really pleased to see them both play so well.’
Both Guehi and Gilmour were handed their full first-team debuts for Chelsea during the 7-1 thrashing of Grimsby Town earlier on in the competition, while the latter has also featured against Sheffield United in the Premier League.
Guehi is yet to feature for the Blues in a top-flight match but he admitted that the team will look to bounce back from their setback against United when they face Watford at Vicarage Road in the Premier League on Saturday.
‘The defeat is a tough one to take after such a good run of form, but the most important thing is to bounce back and recover and go again in the Premier League,’ Guehi said.
‘We played well in spells of the game. At half-time, the manager said to carry on what we were doing, keep moving the ball fast, but with a bit more intensity and a bit more zeal to our game.
‘That is what we tried to do and we came out fast and we came out strong. Michy scored a fantastic goal for us but unfortunately, we came away with a loss.’
Reports in England claim Chelsea fans have begged Frank Lampard to start wonder kid Billy Gilmour against Manchester United this evening.
The Blues are looking for revenge in the Carabao Cup clash at Stamford Bridge after being hammered 4-0 at Old Trafford on the opening weekend of the Premier League.
Both sides are expected to make numerous changes for the fourth-round tie, with Chelsea ready to hand starts to the likes of Olivier Giroud, Pedro and Ross Barkley.
However, supporters are especially eager to see 18-year-old Scot Gilmour in action.
The former Rangers youngster, who joined Chelsea in 2017, made his senior debut in the 2-2 draw against Sheffield United before putting in a top-quality performance in the 7-1 Carabao Cup third-round win over Grimsby Town.
Current midfield pivot Jorginho is in need of a rest after already playing in 14 games this term.
And fans are desperate to see Gilmour get another shot in the starting XI, with the teen recently catching the eye in the U23’s 3-1 win over rivals Arsenal, report The Sun.
Lampard said at his pre-match press conference on Tuesday that there will be opportunities for players who haven’t been involved in recent matches, irrespective of their age.
Responding to the comments, one fan tweeted: “Gilmour madness incoming?”
Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer claims Chelsea are reaping the rewards of their rising talents’ rich loan experiences.
United travel to Stamford Bridge in the Carabao Cup fourth round on Wednesday night to face an in-form Chelsea side searching for an eighth successive win in all competitions.
Academy graduates Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori are among those leading Chelsea’s charge this season, with Callum Hudson-Odoi and Reece James also firmly in the picture.
And Solskjaer says the benefits many of those players have gained from successful loan spells in the Premier League, Championship or overseas is what currently sets them apart from the majority of his United youngsters, who have been promoted straight to the first team from the academy.
“It [Chelsea] is a very exciting team,” Solskjaer said. “Frank has got players that have been on loan for one or two seasons in the Championship.
“The difference between my youngsters is that they are almost stepping right now onto the scene. Axel Tuanzebe has missed the last couple of games for us [through injury] but he has been out on loan and you can see the benefit and I think Chelsea’s young players benefit from that now. They are a mature young team.”
United beat Chelsea 4-0 in their opening Premier League match of the season but Solskjaer believes the scoreline was misleading. Pogba was also instrumental in that game but, with the France midfielder ruled out until early December, the manager has challenged Fred and Pereira to step up after encouraging showings from the Brazil midfielders in recent games against Liverpool and Norwich City, the Telegraph report.
“I think Frank has done a good job – the performance against us was good,” he said. “The result was bad but we held our hands up then and said ‘Yep, 4-0, flattering’.
“We got pegged back, they pressed us but we scored two goals within a minute, the second and third, which decided the game for us. But we didn’t think we were 4-0 better than them. It is going to be an interesting game. We don’t make it easy for ourselves in the cups with the draws.
“The two Brazilians, Fred and Andreas, with their energy and drive, they are going to be important for us. Fred will probably take Paul’s position for a while now and that’s been brilliant for us and Andreas has grown in the last few games. His energy and running, chasing, he is a different sort of No. 10. Great professional, great attitude. He does his job to the best of his abilities.
“There is no use talking about who is not going to be here for a long, long time, because he is not going to come on the pitch and help us until he is fit. Paul’s been brilliant and he is a creative midfielder that we need but now it is up to the others to step up.”
Los Blancos forward has revealed he held a secret meeting where he agreed to join Real Madrid a year before he finally quit Chelsea.
Hazard completed his protracted £150million move to Spain last summer after the Blues held out for the biggest fee they could for their star player.
The 28-year-old has lifted the lid on the behind-the-scenes discussions during an interview with Real Madrid TV.
He said: “Courtois is someone I know well and in which I trust. He always told me it was the best club. When he finished the World Cup in Russia I wanted to go to Madrid, I had already made the decision.
“It was not possible and I was another year Chelsea. That made the exit easier, Chelsea understood and let me out. I spoke to Florentino and told me that I was expected in Madrid.
“After I spoke with Luka Modric and felt that everyone wanted me see at Real Madrid. And finally fulfilled.”
Belgium manager Roberto Martinez has compared Chelsea star Christian Pulisic to Real Madrid forward Eden Hazard, and thinks they’re “exactly the same” in the final third.
The 21-year-old refused to name himself as Hazard’s replacement after arriving at Stamford Bridge for £58million.
Pulisic is always on the move, and is similar to Eden Hazard, according to Belgium boss Roberto Martinez.
The USA international impressed for Chelsea in their 4-2 win over Burnley, as he scored a ‘perfect’ hat-trick at Turf Moor.
Pulisic had previously struggled to break into the Chelsea team since his arrival this summer, but Martinez has backed him to be a success at Stamford Bridge.
While they’re different players, Pulisic and Hazard are identical when they get into the opposition’s box, he said.
“[They’re] very different, very different. Eden is a player that stops and assesses where he can execute his moment in a one v one situation,” Martinez told Sky Sports’ Goals on Sunday.
“I think Christian is dynamic, he always needs to be on the move.
“He’s someone that needs to receive on the move, so they’re very different in that aspect.
“I think what they bring in the final third is exactly the same, players that think and take control of the moment and then they can find a good assist or a goal.
“I saw Christian Pulisic play a lot for Borussia Dortmund last season. He’s exactly what you say, there is a lot of technical players that when they get in the box, everything is rushed,
“He is the opposite, when he gets in the box he makes the right call, he can finish with his right, his left, he’s a very impressive player.
“What impressed me the most is the way Frank Lampard has managed him. We all know when a foreign player arrivers in the Premier League, it doesn’t matter who you are, you need a settling period.
“For Lampard to know exactly what Christian needed, it’s taken him ten games to unleash him in a way, I think from the European Cup and the game against Liverpool in the Super Cup, Christian Pulisic is now adapted to the Premier League. That’s full credit to Frank Lampard.”