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The reason behind why Manchester United passed on Antonio Conte

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Why Manchester United opted against appointing Antonio Conte at Old Trafford

Woodward passed on Antonio Conte

Manchester United chief executive Ed Woodward has hardly endeared himself to many a Red Devils faithful both at home and abroad, and that frustration could be set to continue.

Though Woodward is set to depart United at the end of this month after a sixteen-year relationship that began in 2005 in the wake of his advisory role to the Glaser family during their financial takeover of the English giants, the 50-year-old Chelmsford-native has blundered time and again during his time in the club’s hierarchy.

And now it has been revealed that the United chief passed on Antonio Conte in the wake of the club parting ways with Ole Gunnar Solskjær earlier this season before opting for current interim boss Ralf Rangnick.

As reported by the Daily Mail’s Ian Ladyman, Conte’s meticulous manner of managing to a micro-level was seen as a detriment despite his favorable CV, causing Woodward to overlook him during the hiring process after United ended their working relationship with the “babyfaced assassin.”

United could well be made to pay for that oversight as well after recent rumors have surfaced regarding tensions in the dressing room as players have failed to adapt to Rangnick, while Tottenham has yet to lose in the Premier League (6-2-0) since Conte took over from Nuno Espírito Santo while also currently sitting ahead of the Red Devils in the table.

United left in the wake of Man City and Liverpool

Though Manchester United has continued to be a standard-bearer in world football when it comes to the commercial side of the game, the Premier League giants have fallen away from domestic rivals Manchester City and Liverpool since both Pep Guardiola and Jürgen Klopp took over at the Etihad and Anfield.

Why Manchester United opted against appointing Antonio Conte at Old Trafford

HULL, ENGLAND – AUGUST 27: Ed Woodward arrives at the stadium during the Premier League match between Hull City and Manchester United at KCOM Stadium on August 27, 2016 in Hull, England. (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)

Since Pep’s arrival in England, City has never finished below United in the table while banking eight major trophies as well as an appearance in the Champions League finals.

Pep Guardiola

LONDON, ENGLAND – MAY 18: Josep Guardiola, Manager of Manchester City celebrates victory after the FA Cup Final match between Manchester City and Watford at Wembley Stadium on May 18, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Matt McNulty – Manchester City/Man City via Getty Images)

Klopp’s Liverpool has also made strides during that time period especially more recently when they were crowned Premier League champions two seasons ago while also adding to their Champions League trophy cabinet the season prior.

Why Manchester United opted against appointing Antonio Conte at Old Trafford

LONDON, ENGLAND – MARCH 31: Jurgen Klopp, Manager of Liverpool reacts after the Premier League match between Crystal Palace and Liverpool at Selhurst Park on March 31, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Jordan Mansfield/Getty Images)

But for United under Woodward’s guidance and the litany of questionable decisions from managerial appointments to the way the club have gone about their transfer business, 2016-17 remains the last season that the Red Devils have earned any major honors.

For a club the size of Manchester United, this was hardly good enough and truthfully, few will be sad to see the back of Ed Woodward.


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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Manchester City 21 40 53
2 Chelsea FC 21 29 43
3 Liverpool FC 20 34 42
4 Arsenal FC 20 8 35
5 West Ham United 20 10 34
6 Tottenham Hotspur 18 3 33
7 Manchester United 19 3 31
8 Wolverhampton Wanderers 19 0 28
9 Brighton & Hove Albion 19 0 27
10 Leicester City 18 -2 25
11 Crystal Palace 20 -1 23
12 Brentford FC 19 -3 23
13 Aston Villa 19 -5 22
14 Southampton FC 19 -9 21
15 Everton FC 18 -9 19
16 Leeds United 19 -16 19
17 Watford FC 18 -14 13
18 Burnley FC 17 -11 11
19 Newcastle United 19 -23 11
20 Norwich City 19 -34 10
Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 16
Jota, Diogo Liverpool FC 10
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City 9
Dennis, Emmanuel Watford FC 8
Antonio, Michail West Ham United 8
Ronaldo, Cristiano Manchester United 8
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur 8
Smith-Rowe, Emile Arsenal FC 8
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 8
Raphinha Leeds United 8
Mount, Mason Chelsea FC 7
Sterling, Raheem Manchester City 7
Maupay, Neal Brighton & Hove Albion 7
Silva, Bernardo Manchester City 7
Mahrez, Riyad Manchester City 6
Saka, Bukayo Arsenal FC 6
Gallagher, Conor Crystal Palace 6
Jorginho Chelsea FC 6
Wilson, Callum Newcastle United 6
Cornet, Maxwel Burnley FC 6





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As Arthur-Arsenal update surfaces, Fiorentina boss speaks on Vlahovic’s future

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As major Arthur-Arsenal update surfaces, Fiorentina boss speaks out over Dusan Vlahovic’s future

 

A pair of updates pertaining to the January transfer efforts of Premier League giants Arsenal have been forthcoming late on Monday night.

‘Very motivated’

The first comes in the form of a fresh insight into the future of Fiorentina sensation Dusan Vlahovic.

The Serb has of course been hotly tipped for an Emirates switch this month, amid a scintillating campaign to date which has seen him bag 20 goals in just 24 appearances across all competitions.

Vlahovic’s latest display of remarkable finishing ability came earlier this evening, when the 21-year-old added to his season tally courtesy of a sumptuous touch and strike in a 6-0 drubbing of Genoa:

What truly piqued the attentions of the Arsenal faithful, however, was not the hitman’s finish itself, but rather his ensuing reaction.

This comes with Vlahovic having turned to wave to the Fiorentina crowd in almost apologetic fashion, an act which many of a Gunners persuasion have since chosen to believe represented a message of farewell. The more likely explanation, however, was that the youngster was simply saying sorry, after seeing an earlier spot-kick ‘Panenka’ attempt foiled by Genoa’s no.1

In turn, speaking post-match, it came as little surprise when the future of his side’s talisman was put to Viola boss Vincenzo Italiano.

The Italian, however, was keen to keep his cards close to his chest, assuring that Vlahovic remains ‘with us’ and ‘very motivated’:

One in/one out at Juve?

Elsewhere, an update has too been provided on Arsenal’s pursuit of another Serie A star.

The man in question? Arthur.

Amid the crisis in Mikel Arteta’s ranks in the middle of the park of late, Juventus midfielder Arthur has too been heavily linked with a move to the Emirates.

To this point, a deal has not been forthcoming, though, amid the widespread understanding that Juve boss Max Allegri will not sanction the Brazilian’s loan departure until a replacement is secured.

As major Arthur-Arsenal update surfaces, Fiorentina boss speaks out over Dusan Vlahovic’s future

BARCELONA, SPAIN – DECEMBER 08: Arthur Melo of Juventus runs with the ball during the UEFA Champions League Group G stage match between FC Barcelona and Juventus at Camp Nou on December 08, 2020 in Barcelona, Spain. Sporting stadiums around Spain remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

But, as per a report from Italian transfer expert Gianluca Di Marzio, the Bianconeri may well now have found their man.

The transfer chiefs in Turin are understood to have made fresh contact with Borussia Monchengladbach, over the January addition of soon-to-be free agent Denis Zakaria.

This comes with Arthur ‘insisting’ on a move to Arsenal, before the January transfer window slams shut in just two weeks’ time.

 

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Manchester City 22 41 56
2 Liverpool FC 21 37 45
3 Chelsea FC 22 28 43
4 West Ham United 22 11 37
5 Arsenal FC 20 8 35
6 Tottenham Hotspur 18 3 33
7 Manchester United 20 3 32
8 Wolverhampton Wanderers 20 2 31
9 Brighton & Hove Albion 20 0 28
10 Leicester City 18 -2 25
11 Crystal Palace 21 -1 24
12 Southampton FC 21 -8 24
13 Aston Villa 20 -5 23
14 Brentford FC 21 -9 23
15 Leeds United 20 -15 22
16 Everton FC 19 -10 19
17 Watford FC 19 -14 14
18 Norwich City 21 -35 13
19 Newcastle United 20 -23 12
20 Burnley FC 17 -11 11
Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 16
Jota, Diogo Liverpool FC 10
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City 9
Antonio, Michail West Ham United 8
Dennis, Emmanuel Watford FC 8
Ronaldo, Cristiano Manchester United 8
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur 8
Smith-Rowe, Emile Arsenal FC 8
Raphinha Leeds United 8
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 8
Mount, Mason Chelsea FC 7
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United 7
Gallagher, Conor Crystal Palace 7
Sterling, Raheem Manchester City 7
Maupay, Neal Brighton & Hove Albion 7
Silva, Bernardo Manchester City 7
Bowen, Jarrod West Ham United 6
Mahrez, Riyad Manchester City 6
Saka, Bukayo Arsenal FC 6
Ward Prowse, James Southampton FC 6





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West Ham set sights on €20m-rated defender/Newcastle also keen

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West Ham set sights on €20m-rated defender/Newcastle also keen

 

Word stemming from the English media on Monday evening suggests that West Ham United are expressing a keen interest in Fenerbahce stopper Attila Szalai.

Ogbonna out long term

The need for defensive reinforcements has of course emerged as something of a pressing matter at the London Stadium over recent weeks.

This comes with David Moyes’ high-flying Hammers having been dealt an altogether untimely pair of blows on the personnel front.

First, late in November, Angelo Ogbonna was forced under the knife owing to a knee injury picked up in a 3-2 win over Liverpool, ruling the Italian out for the remainder of the campaign.

West Ham set sights on €20m-rated defender/Newcastle also keen

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – FEBRUARY 09: Angelo Ogbonna of West Ham United holds his ankle after Anthony Martial of Manchester United collides with it during The Emirates FA Cup Fifth Round match between Manchester United and West Ham United at Old Trafford on February 9, 2021 in Manchester, England (Photo by Simon Stacpoole/Offside/Offside via Getty Images)

Then, just weeks later, the Irons’ concerns were added to further, when Kurt Zouma was too forced onto the treatment table, on the back of a hamstring issue picked up during a derby clash with Chelsea.

Szalai eyed

With both stoppers still sidelined, it has therefore come as little surprise to see speculation begin to mount in the media of late that the transfer team at the London Stadium have set their sights firmly on defensive reinforcements this month.

A whole host of defenders have been tipped to make the move to east London, with Liverpool’s Nat Phillips previously viewed as the front-runner to link up with David Moyes’ squad.

West Ham set sights on €20m-rated defender/Newcastle also keen

BLACKBURN, ENGLAND – JULY 19: Nat Phillips of Liverpool at Ewood Park on July 19, 2018 in Blackburn, England. (Photo by James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images)

But, as alluded to above, on Monday, a new name has entered the fray.

The player in question? Attila Szalai.

As per a report from Sky Sports News, West Ham are expressing a keen interest in bringing highly-regarded Hungarian international Szalai to the English capital.

The 23-year-old, who shone for his country at last summer’s European Championships, is currently plying his trade in Turkey with Super Lig giants Fenerbahce.

The Irons’ board, though, will need to move decisively if they hope to strike a deal for Szalai, understood to boast a price-tag of around 20 million euro (£17 million), with both Premier League rivals Newcastle and Italian heavyweights AC Milan also keen on the defender.

 

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Manchester City 22 41 56
2 Liverpool FC 21 37 45
3 Chelsea FC 22 28 43
4 West Ham United 22 11 37
5 Arsenal FC 20 8 35
6 Tottenham Hotspur 18 3 33
7 Manchester United 20 3 32
8 Wolverhampton Wanderers 20 2 31
9 Brighton & Hove Albion 20 0 28
10 Leicester City 18 -2 25
11 Crystal Palace 21 -1 24
12 Southampton FC 21 -8 24
13 Aston Villa 20 -5 23
14 Brentford FC 21 -9 23
15 Leeds United 20 -15 22
16 Everton FC 19 -10 19
17 Watford FC 19 -14 14
18 Norwich City 21 -35 13
19 Newcastle United 20 -23 12
20 Burnley FC 17 -11 11
Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 16
Jota, Diogo Liverpool FC 10
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City 9
Antonio, Michail West Ham United 8
Dennis, Emmanuel Watford FC 8
Ronaldo, Cristiano Manchester United 8
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur 8
Smith-Rowe, Emile Arsenal FC 8
Raphinha Leeds United 8
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 8
Mount, Mason Chelsea FC 7
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United 7
Gallagher, Conor Crystal Palace 7
Sterling, Raheem Manchester City 7
Maupay, Neal Brighton & Hove Albion 7
Silva, Bernardo Manchester City 7
Bowen, Jarrod West Ham United 6
Mahrez, Riyad Manchester City 6
Saka, Bukayo Arsenal FC 6
Ward Prowse, James Southampton FC 6





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101 Great Goals Premier League betting tips round-up

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This article provides betting tips for Premier League Gameweek 17/24 midweek matches.

Premier League betting tips round-up

Chelsea will be looking to return to winning ways against Brighton on Tuesday with the Blues now looking over their shoulder following defeat to Man City.

Elsewhere, Spurs travel to Leicester and Manchester United host Brentford, with both teams targeting a place in the top four.

Here, 101 Great Goals previews this week’s Premier League fixtures and offers the best tips and bets around:

Burnley vs Watford

o – Burnley 6/5

o – Draw 23/10

o – Watford 12/5

Burnley are now rock bottom of the table following Newcastle United’s draw against Watford and despite having three games in hand, they have just lost their top scorer Chris Wood to the Tyneside club.

Watford are also in big trouble as they sit just outside the top four and are winless in seven matches.

 

Betting Tip 1: Both teams to score (4/5 odds).

Watford are the only club in England’s top four leagues not to keep a clean sheet this season.

Meanwhile, the hosts have conceded six goals in their last two outings.

Betting Tip 2: Emmanuel Dennis to score first (17/2 odds) or anytime (3/1 odds).

Only three players have scored more than Dennis’ eight Premier League goals this season.

The striker has been a revelation signing for the Hornets and will be crucial for them in Tuesday’s relegation battle.

Full Burnley vs Watford betting tips.

 

Brighton vs Chelsea

o – Brighton & Hove Albion 15/4

o – Draw 11/4

o – Chelsea 8/11

Chelsea have now won just once in their last six matches following their defeat to Man City and trail the league leaders by 13 points.

Brighton clinched a late equaliser against rivals Brighton and are up into 9th in the table.

 

Betting Tip 1: Both teams to score and under 2.5 goals (7/1 odds)

Both teams have been strong defensively this season and a low scoring affair can be expected.

Brighton have conceded an average of a goal per game, whilst the Blues’ average is just 0.64 goals conceded per game.

Meanwhile, Chelsea have conceded at least once in 45 percent of their matches and the Seagulls have conceded at least once in 60 percent of their games.

Betting Tip 2: Mason Mount to score anytime (6/4 odds)

Mount is likely to return to the line-up on Tuesday having been rested against Man City.

The midfielder has already netted seven time in the league this season.

he has been one of the Blues’ most threatening players this season and him being back in the lineup will be a big boost for Tuchel’s side.

Full Brighton vs Chelsea betting tips

 

Leicester vs Tottenham

o – Leicester City 2/1

o – Draw 5/2

o – Tottenham Hotspur 13/10

Tottenham Hotspur will be hoping to gather momentum in the race for the top four.

A win on Thursday would them to within a point of fourth-place West Ham with three games in hand.

Leicester have played just once in 2022 but their squad has been decimated by injuries and AFCON.

However, their last league outing saw them defeat Liverpool 1-0 at the King Power.

 

Betting Tip 1: Over 2.5 goals and a draw (9/1).

11 of the last 17 meetings between these two clubs has ended in over 2.5 goals being scored.

Both teams, particularly Leicester, have key defenders missing, meaning more goals are expected.

The Foxes managed to clinch a win against Liverpool in their last game at the King Power and will be confident of also stifling Spurs.

Betting Tip 2: Harry Kane to score first (10/3).

Harry Kane has an extraordinary record of scoring against Leicester City.

The striker has netted 15 goals in 12 appearances against the Foxes.

His last two games against Leicester has seen him score four goals.

Full Leicester vs Tottenham betting tips here.

 

Brentford vs Manchester United

o – Brentford 7/2

o – Draw 27/10

o – Manchester United 4/5

Manchester United will need to produce a big response on Thursday following a defeat to Wolves and letting a two-goal lead slip against Aston Villa.

They will fancy their chances against a Brentford side who have lost their last two matches.

 

Full Brentford vs Manchester United betting tips here.


Note: All odds mentioned in this article are correct at the time of publishing and are subject to change.

– 101 Great Goals may earn commission from links on this page. Our content is always original. Note that all of our reviewers are compensated for contributing content to 101 Great Goals. Learn more.

For more betting tips content see here: Premier League betting tips & Football betting tips.




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