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Thursday, 03 January 2013 16:04

Is Bosingwa heading for QPR exit?bosingwa_norwich_64064_334709_478x359.jpg

English Premier League Xmas review

After another hectic flurry of festive football, here's PortuGOAL's Stephen Gillett with a brief traverse over the slippery slopes of the English top flight.

Normally the festive season is one to be jolly, but instead of receiving gifts and bonuses José Bosingwa was docked two-weeks' wages by QPR - after he refused to be named as a substitute for Rangers' game with Fulham on 15 December.

Rangers won that game, their first victory of the season, but endured a miserable time of it over Christmas with three losses to Newcastle, West Brom and Liverpool. Though still bottom, the West London side showed they may have the stomach for a relegation dogfight, however, with a shock 1-0 win at Chelsea last night.

Bosingwa seems likely to be frozen out, however, after his antics - which led to several of QPR's senior players branding him 'a disgrace'. He has now apologised to manager Harry Redknapp, but this belated show of remorse appears unlikely to save the former Chelsea defender from being shipped out at the first opportunity.

Bosingwa's beef with Redknapp follows his disputes at international level with Portugal manager Paulo Bento. Bosingwa, along with Real Madrid defender Ricardo Carvalho, vowed not to represent the Selecção while Bento is in charge.

Fonte finds foothold outside of relegation places

The form of José Fonte and Southampton continues to suggest that both player and club may achieve their goal of Premier League survival this season. The Saints didn't pick up a huge number of points over Christmas, but their form - and ability to score goals in the Premier League - bodes well for the run-in.

Southampton entered the festive break on the back of a defeat to struggling Sunderland, but steadied the ship with a 1-1 draw at Fulham on Boxing Day. They followed this with a decent 3-3 draw at Stoke before earning a point from an entertaining encounter against Arsenal last night.

The Saints play Chelsea this Saturday in the FA Cup.

Nani warms his cockles in Dubai

Manchester United's Luis Nani, meanwhile, didn't feature in any of the league leaders' games over Christmas or New Year. The winger has been ruled out with a hamstring injury for nearly two months and has been in Dubai to recuperate. He is expected to challenge for a starting spot at Old Trafford later this month.

Vaz-Tê misses sitter on return

West Ham fans longing for the return of maverick striker Ricardo Vaz-Tê got their wish last weekend, only to see the forward blow a glorious opportunity of earning his side a draw.

The former Bolton and Barnsley striker has been sidelined with a dislocated shoulder since October, but got back on the pitch for Sam Alladyce's Hammers in their New Year's Day fixture against Reading. With West Ham losing 1-0, Vaz-Tê made his entrance as a sub, but fluffed a chance from four yards out that would have levelled matters. Afterwards, a disappointed Vaz-Tê told West Ham TV: 'It was a great chance - the easiest chance I will ever have to score and I should have put it in the back of the net'.

Carriço set for Royal challenge

As reported earlier this week, Sporting captain Daniel Carriço has joined Reading for a fee in the region of €750,000 Euros. The versatile defender will link up with Brian McDermott's squad this week and is likely to be in contention for a place in their squad for the Premier League fixture against West Brom on 12 January.

Villa Boas continues to impress

Turning our attention from players to managers. André Villas-Boas had an enjoyable Christmas.

The former Porto and Chelsea coach has gradually been winning over his critics and 10 points out of a possible 12 over the festive break has further strengthened the belief that his Tottenham side are serious contenders for a top-four finish. The North Londoners drew with Stoke before chalking up wins over Sunderland, Reading and Aston Villa; they currently lie six points behind Manchester City and 13 behind leaders Manchester United.

Welsh winger Gareth Bale has been instrumental in Tottenham's recent success and Villa Boas has praised the 23-year-old recently, claiming that the left-footer is 'up there with the best'.

A weekend of FA Cup football

This coming weekend sees Premier League teams enter the FA Cup at the Third Round stage. Highlights include a repeat of the memorable 1987 Cup Final between Tottenham and Coventry and an all-Premier League clash between West Ham and Manchester United.

By Stephen Gillett

Comments (12)
no, no, no
12 Monday, 07 January 2013 00:34
Why are people calling Coentrao one of the best left backs in the world? Yes, during his last campaign at Benfica, not now.
This isn't "problems at Real". By all accounts he's one of the problems. Bad attitude, partying, late for training numerous times, and injured.
I might dislike and shake my head at seeing ugh out there, but this isn't our Coentrao we would be getting back.
Re: Coentrao
11 Sunday, 06 January 2013 19:00
I on the other hand would really like to see Coentrao back for 6 months...whatever's been happening to him at Madrid, he's still as good a left back as there is in the world today, that's a pure fact. Besides, problems at Real Madrid are the norm, who hasn't had problems at that club?!! Anyway in all probability it won't happen, so we'll probably have to put up with Melgarejo for the rest of the season, unless JJ finally realises that Luisinho is better, as the rest of us have haha!!!
10 Sunday, 06 January 2013 14:40
Thanks Val. I will take you up on that offer I have business up in Toronto and will probably head up there at least once this year.

No, No, No.
The last thing I want to see is Coentrao come back. People are still seeing the old Coentrao, and not the now and present one. He has done little at Real. Has been injured and hasn't worked hard to come back. Lastly he had a great opportunity to cement his position and have world class experience/career at a world class club, with no current competition for it, yet he throws it away. I don't want that guy anywhere near my club.
Coentrao would never lower salary, to come back on loan. It would set bad precedence going forward, should he get sold. Benfica has already made a nice profit from Coentrao, why donate some back. Yes Coentrao could find himself being extra motivated and excel. But he could also be the huge ego partying guy that will disrupt chemistry. The risks and costs just aren't worth it.
@NJ Re: Coentrao
9 Saturday, 05 January 2013 10:28
Let's get him on loan until the summer! He would be the perfect solution to the only slight problem position in SLB's current team: LB. Yes his wages at Real are way above our budget, but possibly due to his huge problems at the Bernabeu and due to his huge connection to Benfica, he'd be willing to accept a pay cut for just 6 months until the end of the season, and then review the situation then. Now can you imagine Fabio and Ola John together on our left flank? My goodness, they would create absolute havoc to the right side of any team's defence! Come on JJ and LFV, bring him back for a while lol!!!
Disgrace and classless
8 Friday, 04 January 2013 20:22
Bosingwa is a disgrace to football . I hope we hear last of him .
Besides him there are others like Pepe , Ronaldo ,Mourinho
show their antics and low class.Portugese Federation should ensure these low class pathetic players and managers are given training how to behave in society.

There is so much talent in portugal football , its time we clean up the closet!
Vaz Te and Bosingwa
7 Friday, 04 January 2013 19:41
Vaz Te is going to struggle to get playing time with Cole, Maiga and now Chamakh vying for time up front. Bosingwa is probably stuck at QPR, as they're probably paying him a pretty decent wage and I doubt anybody is going to match it and why would he leave that?
+3 to (NJ/USA/SLB)
6 Friday, 04 January 2013 18:42
+1 for this;
"Quaresma and Boswinga should be driven to the dump"

+2 for using a fave OrlandoMac line;
"All mental midgets."

+3 for reminding us again WHY Ronaldo is so great and what seperates the greats from the rest.

If you eve visit Toronto, i am buying you a coffee and a papseco com manteiga. :)
My thoughts and a little rant
5 Friday, 04 January 2013 17:33
I know that we, as fans, have strong ties and feelings for teams and players. But I do find it amazing that Cristiano, who is considered the best in the world by many reputable people, yet gets killed for; actions, his ego, not team player, cares about stats, etc... This is either the best or second best player in world, by a long shot. Guess what, he has a huge ego. He could demand things. Funny thing is that everyone of his former teammates says how hard he works. How he's the first one in and last one to leave training. Kaka said how he never had another player pull him aside after training wanting to go over his favorite positioning and movement. Cristiano did.
We, plenty of Portuguese included, kill him...

Yet many provide excuses for and keep going on about how it's managers, clubs and never the players fault when they fail. Quaresma, Boswinga, Nani, and now sadly Coentrao, to name a few, have become clowns. These guys are a joke, and I'm glad that clubs have fined them and are actively trying to get rid of them. Quaresma and Boswinga should be driven to the dump, since they've been done for a long time now. Nani and Coentrao can still salvage their careers, but why should we care. All mental midgets, that don't deserve our attention.

I would love it if Arsenal, as rumoured, would bring in Boswinga and Nani. Watching that disaster unfold, would be great theater. Wenger will never pay the wages those two are expecting, so I doubt it will happen.

I'm happy for Fonte. Southampton has been fun to watch, and hopefully they will stay up.

I really liked how Vaz Te apologized for missing a sitter, when he didn't have to. He shared the disappointment with the fan base, and went on to say that he'll do better. The guy cares and, for now, gets it.

I hope Carrico can show something. I'm disappointed that he was never able to crack Sporting's pathetic defense, but hopefully that was more due to managers and tactics. Let's see what he can get done at Reading.

AVB could do something special this campaign. My only concern is with the Spurs sustainability. The CL money and prestige would be great for acquiring talent, but we'll see. They haven't shown to have the depth or quality to compete on multiple fronts.
Never trust a guy with a unibrow
4 Friday, 04 January 2013 14:43
Bosingwa's a head case, always has been. I am not denying his talent, which was there but he was always a problem.

With Porto he goes for a joyride with 3 soccer mates, is driving way too fast over bad terrain and crashes his jeep, Sandro Luis had to have his foot amputated because of the accident, Bosingwa was suspended by Porto.

With Chelsea he stamps on Benayoun's back, gets away with it because the ref didnt see it. Later against Barca, he calls the ref a "thief" in television and is suspended 3 matches by UEFA.

Wont play for the national squad while Bento is in charge, walks out on Harry Rednapp because he did not want to sit on the bench, and QPR BEAT Chelsea.

Terrible attitude, no class, spoiled brat Bosingwa.

I am glad he is gone, gave Joao Perreira a chance to start who i admire very much.
@ Ivo
3 Friday, 04 January 2013 00:23
Ivo, why do you hate me? Why would you wish for Moutinho to leave my team? I think you have an alterior motive my friend... Moutinho leaves and all FCP rivals will benefit.

I hope he stays. I don't think he will necessarily develop any better in England.

Also, I'd like to point something out to all the folks who are dying to see our best talent leave for other pastures. First of all, talent loss waters down the legitimacy of our league. The more we can find a balance between breeding good talent and retaining quality players the more our league is galvanized as an end destination for excellent players.

Next, bigger names help draw attendance, which is arguably the biggest hitch in our system. Put simply, outside the big 4, Guimaraes and maybe Pacos Ferreira, attendance is pathetic.

Finally, if we think about things from the national team perspective, going to England can actually be detrimental. There are more teams and more fixtures. This means that players will be more fatigued heading into the international fixtures as they are faced with more playing time.

And let's be honest, I don't think that the English game is more technical than the Portuguese. In my opinion, the opposite is true. Look beyond the big boys and you find a plethora of long ball teams like Stoke that thrive on physical intimidation and fouls to win. This may help some of our boys toughen up but it also increases the potential for fatigue and injury.

Anyways, just a few thoughts.
Bosingwa is no longer relevant
2 Thursday, 03 January 2013 22:31
I used to like this player but his decline has been rapid. Seems like a head case and pretty soon will be playing in the Middle East or for a modest Portuguese at lower wages. Very disappointing to see a shining star at one time become irrelevant quickly.

What is it with some of these players and their attitudes? We need to see new blood in Portuguese soccer and I am tired to read about all these declining and bad attitude players.
1 Thursday, 03 January 2013 21:42
I like Fonte, he seems to be a vocal leader on the pitch and pretty dependable. I wonder if he'll ever get a chance to play for the NT?

Nani just needs to leave ASAP.

Glad to see Vaz Te playing again and I hope he return's to last season's form

No idea how Carrico is going to do at Reading, but I wish him well.

As for Tottenham, I really hope they can hang on to Bale as they are nowhere near as effective without him. If they must get rid of it, I really hope they pick up an adequate replacement or two with the windfall (maybe Sneijder is in the cards)? And I know AVB played down transfer rumours last week by saying it was highly unlikely that Spurs would pick up anyone this transfer window, but I really would love to see Moutinho finally get plucked out of the Portuguese league. I still think they need to focus on picking up a quality striker since Adebayor is inconsistent and plays like an idiot from time to time. How sweet would it be if AVB and Tottenham were to finish ahead of Chelsea this season?

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