Seven Days in Seven Points
Moyes in the hood
Moyes is back! The former Everton, Manchester United and, most recently, Real Sociedad manager has taken the reins at Sunderland following Sam Allardyce’s appointment as England boss. The 53-year-old has been tasked with not just ensuring the Black Cats’ survival, but pushing them up the table so as to avoid yet another end of season relegation fight. Moyes has a fairly decent squad at his disposal, but he’ll certainly need to add some additional talent if his side is to trouble some of the Premier League’s more established sides. Rumours suggest that Moyes could look to pillage Old Trafford to snare former players Marouane Fellaini and Adnan Januzaj, and you’d have to say they would be solid captures. Whether they will actually head to the Stadium of Light, however, is still very much up in the air.
Bony back to Swansea?
Premier League clubs, quite clearly, have money to spend this summer. All sides look set to make at least one marque signing, and speculation is rising that Swansea’s could well be former marksman Wilfried Bony. The 27-year-old, who left Wales for the Etihad last year, but it’s safe to say that he hasn’t been an outright success. The Ivorian has bagged just six goals in 36 appearances, and is never going to push his way ahead of Aguero in the City pecking order. If he goes back to the Liberty then I am sure he will be a success; he thrived when he was the centre of attention, and should he return then he will likely take up that position once more.
Paul Pogba is not worth £100m
Money in football is crazy. Absolutely, absolutely crazy. When Championship mid-table sides like Wolves are bidding £20m for a Benfica starlet – pipping Liverpool in the process – you can’t help but sit, mouth agape, and wonder where – and when – it will end. And then we come to the Paul Pogba saga. The 23-year-old midfielder, who left Manchester United for free in 2012 and headed to Turin, now looks set to return to Old Trafford in a deal that would make him the most expensive footballer in history. Pogba is a good player – obviously – but he is still not even close to being the finished article. He’s powerful, intelligent and can change a game in an instant, but he is also prone to clumsiness, outbursts and lapses in concentration. He plays in a different position so it’s not an entirely apt comparison, but he is not even close to being in the same league as Messi, Ronaldo or Bale. He will improve the Red Devils, but he is still not close to being the world’s best.
Bye bye Bentaleb
One way or another, it looks like this could be the end of Nabil Bentaleb’s Tottenham story. The 21-year-old, who was a favourite of former Spurs boss Tim Sherwood, has done very little to prove his worth over the last 12 months, and it appears that Mauricio Pochettino has deemed him surplus to requirements. Spurs have yet to sell a player this summer, but you’d expect Bentaleb’s exit to be just the first in a long line of White Hart Lane departures. If Tottenham are to be Premier League challengers, there’s no room for players of Bentaleb’s calibre.
Big Sam takes the England reins
Is this job, once regarded as the most difficult in world football, really the tricky prospect it has been in the past? Former managers have had a weight of expectation on their shoulders, but is that still the case? It’s probably safe to say that fan anticipation is at an all-time low – nobody thinks England can do anything on the international stage and, unlike in previous years, we are now no longer fooled by waves of pre-tournament optimism. Success for England at a major tournament would, for most, be getting to a quarter-final, and Big Sam will most likely be able to achieve that goal.
Sammy Ndjock’s ridiculous own goal
The very best of Gonzalo Higuain at Napoli
We’ve already spoken about pricey transfers, so instead of lambasting Juventus for spending £75.3m on the Argentina striker, let’s instead see what prompted them to spent all that money.