ProSoccerTalk’s daily soccer re-set


What we’re thinking, what we’re watching, what’s coming on the blog today and the RASNoD (Random American Soccer Name of the Day). Setting up your day in soccer:

Slow blogging:

We’re enjoying time with our families, but we’ll have a few holiday surprises over on the blog over the next couple of days, including some of our favorite stories of 2012 and stories of our favorite all-time soccer-related Christmas presents.

We’ll have those later today.

Soccer birthday:

Eddie Pope, one of the best defenders ever to come out of these United States, turns 39 on this Christmas Eve. The U.S. Soccer Hall of Famer is now director of player relations for the MLS Players Union.

Big Important Stories of the Day:

It’s a slooooow day. Not much going on, domestic league-wise, overseas-wise … as it should be.

RASNoD (Random American Soccer Name of the Day:  Bora Milutinovic

Twitter dapsource:

What you should watch on TV today:

No lives games on TV today. Looks like that Christmas Story marathon for us all. That thing never get old.

Background noise while blogging/snoozing/traveling today:

Christmas carols, of course. I like more of the latter day stuff, myself, but to each his own.

We’ll leave you with this: 

Seriously, did the referee really need to add more time onto yesterday’s romp-and-stomp at Stamford Bridge, with Chelsea already leading 7-0? Would anyone have complained if the man in the middle staunched the bleeding at 7? Sure enough, Chelsea hit No. 8 in stoppage time. Geeesch.

Oh, and Happy Holidays to all!

Jurgen Klopp announced as new Liverpool manager

Jurgen Klopp, Liverpool FC
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Enough with the speculation and reports already, because it’s finally officially official: Jurgen Klopp has been appointed the newest manager of Liverpool Football Club, the Merseyside club announced on Thursday.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s PL coverage ]

Klopp will be unveiled to the world at an introductory press conference at Anfield on Friday.

According to early reports, Klopp’s three-year contract could pay him as much as $10 million per season.

[ QUOTE KING: Top 10 “Klopp-isms” from his time at Dortmund ]

The 48-year-old German has been out of work since stepping down at Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund following a seventh-place finish to the 2014-15 season. Klopp’s seven seasons in charge of Dortmund weren’t without success and silverware, though, as he led Der BVB to back-to-back league titles in 2011 and 2012, a German Cup triumph in 2012 and a UEFA Champions League final appearance in 2013.

PST’s Joe Prince-Wright will be at Anfield on Friday for Klopp’s unveiling, so be sure to follow JPW on Twitter and check back to PST for wall-to-wall coverage of Klopp’s first press conference as Liverpool manager.

Mourinho “working like never before” to turn Chelsea around

Jose Mourinho, Chelsea FC
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Jose Mourinho got the dreaded much-needed vote of confidence from Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich last weekend, seemingly giving the Portuguese manager a temporary stay of execution despite the Blues’ worst start to a season in 37 years.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s PL coverage ]

Speaking this week, Mourinho has revealed that while he’s thankful to have been kept on at the club for which he regularly professes his love, he still thinks it was no-brainer for Abramovich. In other words, Mourinho’s not backing down from his incredible, seven-minute rant to one question following Saturday’s defeat to Southampton.

Mourinho, on what he’s doing to turn Chelsea around — quotes from the Guardian:

“It shows the confidence of Abramovich in the manager who has won three Premier League titles with this club. I thank him and I keep working.

“What’s going on? I do not know. The results with Chelsea at the moment have been really bad. I cannot hide that reality, and I don’t want to. And I struggle to find an explanation. But I assure you: I’m working like never before and we will come out of this. And there is also the Champions League that we will not neglect, for certain.”

What did you expect from Mourinho? Well, you know, I should probably be fired, but thanks to Mr. Abramovich for not realizing this and keeping me employed? It’s simultaneously interesting and the least surprising thing ever, though, that Mourinho claims to not know what’s wrong with Chelsea at the moment. Of course he has a theory (or five), and of course he’s “working like never before” to correct it.

[ MORE: Ozil, Coquelin say Arsenal can win the title this season ]

The most fascinating thing about Chelsea’s sluggish start to the season is to see, hear and read Mourinho speaking from a position of powerlessness. Always the clever one, the one dictating where the discussion goes, the one in charge of every press interaction, Saturday’s rant felt like watching a desperate Mourinho grasping for anything by which to pull himself back up.