Prime Minister Boris Johnson puts pressure on UEFA to move Champions League final to UK as Chelsea fans officially add their voices

Reports from the United Kingdom indicate that the country’s top government officials are rsolute in their desire that the Champions League final between Chelsea and Manchester City should be moved to another venue in the United Kingdom.

But UEFA are reportedly equally determined to reatain Istanbul as the venue of the final despite complains about Covid-19 crisis Turkey is facing.

That would mean fans of both Chelsea and Manchester City face 10 days of expensive hotel quarantine on their return from Istanbul.

And Johnson asked Uefa to consider an urgent rethink and switch the game from Covid-hit Turkey to the UK.

The PM told SunSport: “The Champions League is the pinnacle of European club football.

“And with two English teams contesting the final, it would be a great shame if fans were unable to attend.

“It would be brilliant to host the game here if we can. I want to help supporters of both clubs see their team in action.”

Johnson’s public intervention strengthened the chances of the game being moved after Uefa were blindsided by the dramatic development.

Euro chiefs have been assured that the UK Government will grant an exemption from the quarantine rules for the two squads if the May 29 game remains at the Ataturk.

That would be a huge relief for England boss Gareth Southgate, who otherwise faced the prospect of having Phil Foden, Raheem Sterling, John Stones, Mason Mount and Ben Chilwell forced to stay under lock and key until four days before the Three Lions’ opener against Croatia.

But the decision – alongside the offer from Downing Street – left Uefa actively considering a U-turn to ensure fans can get to the match.

While there are no issues entering Turkey, any Chelsea or Manchester City fans returning from Istanbul would be left facing bills of nearly £2,000 EACH before being allowed back home from the Final.

Shapps warned: “It does mean that fans should not travel to Turkey. The FA are in discussions with Uefa already on this.

“We are very open to hosting the Final but that’s ultimately a decision for Uefa.

“It’s worth mentioning we already have a successful track record of football matches with spectators and given that two English clubs are in that Final we look forward to hearing what Uefa have to say.”

Uefa was planning to allow up to 6,000 fans from each of the two clubs to travel to Istanbul for the game, which is now scheduled to have a crowd of 25,000.

But Turkey is in the grip of a new wave of the virus, forcing the clampdown on travellers coming into the UK from the country.

Meanwhile, the Chelsea Supporters Trust issued a statement on Friday evening that they are appealing to UEFA to bring the final to the UK.

The group tweeted: ‘Turkey has been added to the red list and therefore no #CFC supporters can travel to watch the #UCL final.

‘We are meeting with the @UEFA president this week & will request that the fixture is moved to the UK. #ForTheFans’

Newcastle stun hosts Leicester City to ease relegation fears

Newcastle, who were superb for 80 minutes, recorded a massive result at King Power Stadium, beating their hosts Leicester City 4-2 in a Premier League match.

Callum Wilson scored twice as Newcastle United eased their relegation fears with a stunning 4-2 win against Leicester City.

Jonny Evans was injured in the warm-up for the hosts, with Marc Albrighton replacing him, and the Magpies took advantage as an error by Caglar Soyuncu allowed Joe Willock to finish after 22 minutes.

Wesley Fofana’s header was saved at the other end by Martin Dubravka, before Paul Dummett doubled Newcastle’s lead with his third Premier League goal on 34 minutes.

Wilson’s breakaway strike on 64 minutes made it 3-0, and he added a fourth nine minutes later after his initial effort had rebounded off a post.

Albrighton’s swerving shot gave Leicester faint hope 10 minutes from time, and Kelechi Iheanacho made it 4-2 with a low shot on 87 minutes.

Newcastle climb to 13th with 39 points from 35 matches, 12 clear of third-from-bottom Fulham, who have four left to play.

Photo Credit: premierleague/Twitter

Jose Mourinho to raid former clubs, others in summer transfer spree for his new club AS Roma

Jose Mourinho has drawn up a seven-man transfer shortlist as he sets his sights on bringing in a number of new faces to Roma.

The Portuguese manager was announced as the Italian club Roma’s successor to Paulo Fonseca earlier this week, just two weeks after he was sacked by Tottenham.

Il Messaggero claims top of his list is Lille midfielder Renato Sanches and Wolves striker Raul Jimenez.

And according to Todofichajes one of the first transfers he wants to make as Roma manager is the acquisition of 30-year-old De Gea.

De Gea has recently been out of favour at Old Trafford following the promotion of Dean Henderson to the No1 spot.

Mourinho is also eager to raid old side Spurs for Eric Dier and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg.

Manchester United could receive a bid for Nemanja Matic, and Mourinho’s final target is Real Madrid playmaker Isco.

Thibaut Courtois’ father slams Eden Hazard

Thibaut Courtois’ father has criticized Eden Hazard for laughing and smiling with former Chelsea team-mates, saying ‘those images are painful for Real Madrid fans’ just minutes after they were dumped out of the Champions League.

Hazard – who returned to Stamford Bridge for the first time since his huge £90million transfer to Spain in 2019 – was seen smiling and laughing with his former colleagues Kurt Zouma and Edouard Mendy at full-time.

His reaction after the 2-0 loss – which saw Thomas Tuchel’s side book their place in the Istanbul final with a 3-1 aggregate victory – saw fans vent their frustration and also led to the father of the Madrid keeper – who is also a former Chelsea player – brandishing him as “unprofessional”.

“Its really not smart for Eden to do that,” Thierry Courtios told HLN Sportcast.

“He probably didn’t think twice about it, but those images are painful for Real Madrid fans.

“If you see a player laughing two minutes after being eliminated, I’d say it was unprofessional.”

The Madrid forward also shared an intimate moment with Azpilicueta, and appeared to wish him well for the final in Turkey against Premier League rivals Manchester City.

Thibaut Courtois reacts to Real Madrid defeat, wants Chelsea to win Champions League trophy

Los Blancos goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois insists he is ‘rooting’ for Chelsea in the Champions League after his former club knocked Real Madrid out in the semi-finals.

Chelsea beat 13-time winners Real Madrid 2-0 at Stamford Bridge to clinch a 3-1 aggregate victory and set up an all-English final against Manchester City.

Courtois spent seven years at Chelsea before joining Madrid in 2018 – winning two Premier League titles with the club – and hopes they go on to win the Champions League.

The Belgian goalkeeper told beIN SPORTS: “Chelsea is a great team and I had some amazing years here. Nothing has really changed.

“I obviously wanted to win tonight but now we didn’t I will be supporting them in the final.

“I have plenty of friends and former teammates here so I only wish them the best for the final and I will be routing for them.”

Timo Werner reveals what Chelsea boss Tuchel usually tells his teammates about N’Golo Kante

Timo Werner has revealed what Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel tells them about N’Golo Kante as the Germany international underlines the importance of the midfielder to the team’s Champions League hopes.

Werner and Kante both played key roles on Wednesday night as Chelsea defeated Real Madrid to book their spot in the final of Europe’s premier competition.

The striker opened the scoring – with Mason Mount putting the tie beyond Real’s reach at the death – and Kante landed the man of the match award.

It was another remarkable performance from the France international – whose ability to cover ground and win back possession continues to amaze – and Werner expressed his delight at playing on the same team as Kante, report the Metro.

“N’Golo is always really important for us,” said Werner.

“He’s a beast, to win the ball and fight and run all over the place.

“The manager tells us every time he is playing that we play with two players.

“He’s a really good guy, plays so good, and also last night how he ran next to me and created a chance and also when he ran with the ball, gave a pass to Christian at the second goal.

“He’s so important to us and I’m very glad we have him in our squad.”

Chelsea set to sell two Blues stars as Thomas Tuchel lines up swoop for three world class stars

Reports claim Chelsea have put Marcos Alonso and Emerson Palmieri on the transfer list in order to raise funds for another summer spree.

The two left-backs sit behind £50million man Ben Chilwell in Thomas Tuchel’s pecking order.

And in a bid to raise funds for another big summer in the transfer market, the Blues are willing to let Alonso and Emerson leave, according to Goal.

Meanwhile, the west London club are reportedly lining up a triple swoop for Jadon Sancho, Romelu Lukaku and Marquinhos after reaching the Champions League final.

According to reports, Chelsea are plotting a major summer of spending, to help Thomas Tuchel close the gap on Premier League leaders Manchester City.

The German has steered the Blues into the Champions League and FA Cup finals since taking the reins in January.

According to the Sunday World, chief Roman Abramovich is now enthused with the club again, and wants to dig into his own pocket and splash the cash.

This investment will allow Tuchel, 47, to strengthen areas of need this summer.

Arsene Wenger identifies “difference” between Chelsea, Manchester City ahead of Champions League final in Istanbul

Arsene Wenger has pinpointed the difference between Manchester City and Chelsea, claiming City are the more “mature” and clinical of the two Champions League finalists.

Both sides were hugely impressive in their semi-final ties, with City eliminating last season’s runners-up Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea overcoming 13-time champions Real Madrid.

The two Premier League rivals will contest an all-English showpiece in Istanbul later this month, while they also have a dress rehearsal in the form of a top-flight clash this Saturday.

Wenger admits it is very hard to pick between City and Chelsea, but he believes Pep Guardiola’s side have a “much higher” conversation rate than the west Londoners.

“I would say City look more mature,” the former Arsenal manager told beIN Sports.

“Both are very good in transition and both teams can maintain a high level, a high rhythm for 90 minutes.

“We could see that Real Madrid when they had to chase the game in the second half, they never found a way to be dangerous because the discipline of these English teams, the capacity to remain focused and the transition of pace to go quickly forwards was always a threat.

“I find, the difference between the two teams is that conversion rate of chances created is, at the moment, much higher at City.”

Although Wenger insists City are the more potent side in front of goal, he says that may no longer be the case by the time the final comes around as Thomas Tuchel continues to fine-tune his side.

The Frenchman – who led Arsenal to the Champions League final in 2006 – added: “They need less chances to score goals than Chelsea.

“But that can change, the final is on the 29th. It’s 24 days – a lot can change in between.”

Eden Hazard reacts to criticisms by Real Madrid supporters after he was filmed laughing with Chelsea stars

Former Chelsea talisman Eden Hazard has tendered an apology to Real Madrid fans over post-match rapport with Chelsea players after Los Blancos’ defeat at Stamford Bridge.

The Belgium international caused controversy on the final whistle after he was filmed laughing and joking with his old Chelsea teammates, something that didn’t go down too well in Madrid.

The Belgian, who’s been ineffectual since joining Madrid from Chelsea for a fee north of €100m in the summer of 2019, took to Instagram on Thursday to post an apology.

“I’m sorry,” he wrote.

“I’ve read a lot of opinions about me today, and it wasn’t my intention to offend the Real Madrid supporters. It’s always been my dream to play for Real Madrid and I came to win. The season isn’t over yet and together we’re going to fight in the battle for La Liga. Hala Madrid!”