Premier League Club Power Rankings: Week 28

1 Comment

There’s a new team at the top, a new one at the bottom, and a club reaching its highest point of the season… in terms of power rankings and maybe soon in terms of the table.

[ MORE: Ranieri fired ]

20. Fulham — The last time Fulham fired a pair of managers in the same season, well, they got relegated. The hiring of Scott Parker may just be a, “Let’s see if you’ve got the stuff to lead us back next season.”
Last week: 19
Season high: 11
Season low: 20

19. Huddersfield Town — A feel-good win for Jan Siewart at the John Smith’s Stadium against a very good Wolves team. Maybe they have a shot at survival? Almost certainly not, but maybe.
Last week: 20
Season high: 16
Season low: 20

18. Cardiff City — As the Bluebirds slip into the Bottom Three, their remaining fixtures pick up in caliber of opponent. Uh oh?
Last week: 15
Season high: 13
Season low: 20

(Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

17. Brighton and Hove Albion — In danger/eligible for the unlikely “Win a cup, qualify for Europe, get relegated” combination.
Last week: 18
Season high: 9
Season low: 19

16. Burnley — Looking down after an 8-match unbeaten run to clearly see the drop zone is alarming.
Last week: 14
Season high: 13
Season low: 20

15. Southampton — Ralphampton lives.
Last week: 17
Season high: 13
Season low: 20

14. Newcastle United — There’s a world in which Rafa Benitez wins Manager of the Year, Miguel Almiron makes Mike Ashley realize the potential of a spending Newcastle, and next season does not involve a relegation fight. It’s somewhere, like the old TV show “Fringe,” and we bet there’s a lot of Geordies who would like to drag it through the breach.
Last week: 16
Season high: 13
Season low: 19

13. Bournemouth — Since starting 6-2-2, the Cherries have collected 14 points. Not good, Ed. Not good.
Last week: 9
Season high: 6
Season low: 14

12. Crystal Palace — Maybe this is Roy Hodgson‘s last Palace hurrah, but he’s getting a job done.
Last week: 10
Season high: 6
Season low: 17

11. Everton — How huge would a Merseyside Derby result be for both the Toffees and the title race? Monumental.
Last week: 13
Season high: 5
Season low: 15

10. Leicester City — I’m not sure that Brendan Rodgers fixes anything, but the Foxes are better than what they showed under Claude Puel.
Last week: 12
Season high: 7
Season low: 13

(Nigel French/PA via AP)

9. West Ham United — Manuel Pellegrini‘s done a fine job, but needs to pile up points over the next four matches to give the Irons a legit shot at seventh.
Last week: 11
Season high: 6
Season low: 20

8. Watford — What is this team?
Last week: 8
Season high: 4
Season low: 14

7. Wolves — A dry patch has seen Nuno Espirito Santo‘s men claim just two of nine available points while losing to Huddersfield Town and drawing Newcastle and Bournemouth. We hate to say it, but that could be it for their European aspirations given Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool, and Manchester United on the back end.
Last week: 6
Season high: 5
Season low: 13

6. Chelsea — That was a quality win against Spurs. You might even call it a Kepa (We’ll be here all night).
Last week: 7
Season high: 1
Season low: 7

5. Spurs — There’s a school of thought that Spurs have overachieved in their continued finishes inside the Top Three, but this season feels like a couple of colossal missed opportunities. One was the summer transfer window, and the other is the last five days.
Last week: 3
Season high: 2
Season low: 8

4. Arsenal — They are fun again, yeah, but the Gunners also very much carry the vibe that Arsene Wenger left behind (both the good and bad parts). We kinda want to see Unai Emery, Season 2 without seeing any more of the first edition.
Last week: 5
Season high: 2
Season low: 9

 (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

3. Manchester United — *New season high*Fun again. And we’ve also learned through the Ole Gunnar Solskjaer era that the Ed Woodward redemption tour is a thing; This roster, even with its lack of spending on defenders, gave the Red Devils enough to compete in England.
Last week: 4
Season high: 3
Season low: 14

2. Manchester City — Tick, tock. Tick, tock. Will Liverpool open the door?
Last week: 1
Season high: 1
Season low: 3

1. Liverpool — The fact is that Liverpool’s point against Manchester United gives it an advantage only exceeded by one other facet; Liverpool may only have Premier League matches on its docket within a couple of weeks, while Man City remains alive in three competitions.
Last week: 2
Season high: 1
Season low: 4

Harry Kane fails to rule out future Tottenham exit

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Harry Kane won’t rule out a future Tottenham exit, admitting that it largely depends on lifting silverware with his boyhood club.

Asked by Jamie Redknapp on an Instagram live session whether he would end his playing career at Spurs, the 26-year-old striker responded that it all depends on the “progress of the team” and added that he’s not the type of person to be somewhere just for the sake of being there.

In other words, he wants to win titles with Spurs, soon. If not, his days in north London may be numbered.

It’s one of those things, I couldn’t say yes, I couldn’t say no,” Kane told Redknapp on Sunday. “I love Spurs, I’ll always love Spurs. But it’s one of those things – I’ve always said if I don’t feel we’re progressing as a team or going in the right direction, then I’m not someone to just stay there for the sake of it.

“I’m an ambitious player, I want to improve, I want to get better, I want to become one of the top, top players,” he added. “It all depends on what happens as a team and how we progress as a team. So it’s not a definite I’m going to stay there forever – but it’s not a no either.”

Kane, along with his teammates at the time, got the short end of the stick under Mauricio Pochettino, losing a Champions League final and a League Cup final. The striker is aware that Spurs, top to bottom, have – and have had – the firepower to lift silverware but need the final push, which they may unlock under proven winner Jose Mourinho.

“We’ve been saying that for a couple of years now,” says Kane, “we have got a fantastic team but for one reason or another we haven’t been able to get the trophies that, when you look from the outside, we’ve got the team to get.”

“It’s a hard thing to take as a player. I want to win at everything I do so when we’re coming close and you don’t quite get there it’s hard to take and starts to build up. But from my point of view, and the team’s point of view, all you can do is do everything you can, give your best to win every game, to win trophies. For one reason or another, we haven’t quite got there yet.

“Next year, the gaffer now, it’ll be his first chance to really have a pre-season with the team and embed his values into the team and we’ll see what happens. Of course, I want to win, I want to win team trophies, I want to be doing it sooner rather than later. So we will have to see how it goes.”

Kane, who is third on Spurs’ all-time scoring list, is fond of Mourinho, a manager he grew up watching and respects. The strike admits they chat on a regular basis about soccer and a plethora of other subjects, but is aware that if Spurs want to reap all the benefits from having him onboard, the players will need to leave it all on the field.

“He came in and what you see is what you get,” Kane said. “He’s an honest guy – he’ll tell you if you’re doing things well or if you’re not. If he likes you he’ll tell you and if he doesn’t like you he’ll tell you.

“From my point of view, I have built a good relationship with him. We talk every few days or so, talk about all different things, talk about the team, when we were playing, what we can do, how we can improve.

“For me, it’s great to work under a manager like Jose. Obviously growing up, watching football, he was a big part of that. It’s another opportunity for me to work with one of the best managers in the world.

“I’m excited to see how that relationship unfolds and see what we can do on the pitch. So far he’s been great and I know he’s excited to put his stamp on the team when he gets his opportunity.

“When a manager like him comes in and you know he’s won everywhere, I’m sure he has no intentions to not do that at Spurs. From a player’s point of view we know we have a top, top manager, so it’s up to us to go out there and perform.”

What we love about West Ham United

West Ham United
IAN KINGTON/AFP via Getty Images
Leave a comment

This week at ProSoccerTalk we will be detailing what we love about each Premier League club competing in the 2019-20 season and next up is Tottenham.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

Each day we will release details on why who adore each team in particular as we remind ourselves just how awesome the PL is as we await its return following the suspension due to the coronavirus pandemic.

This afternoon, we forge ahead with the Irons, the Hammers, the West Ham United Football Club.

The Bubbles: Let’s be honest here, “I’m Forever Blowing Bubbles” is one of the coolest song/gesture combinations in world football. The bubbles floating across the field as the Irons seek three points is *chef’s kiss.*

The Academy of Football: Current captain Mark Noble is the latest in a long line of celebrated footballers to come out of West Ham’s Academy. And there are some giants in there, including the subject of our next topic Sir Bobby Moore. West Ham has produced Joe Cole, Michael Carrick, Jermain Defoe, Paul Ince, Trevor Brooking, and Frank Lampard Senior and Junior.

West Ham United
Frank Lampard and Joe Cole (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)




Sir Bobby Moore: Can you believe we’ve got a member of the Carolina Lightnin’ on this list? Obscure American soccer jokes aside, Mr. West Ham didn’t just captain the club but also the national team that won England’s only World Cup (West Ham legends Geoff Hurst and Martin Peters were also on the team). Moore is one of the greatest defenders of all-time, having played more than 500 times for West Ham in addition to his status as a centurion for the Three Lions. A Ballon d’Or runner-up in 1970, “Sir Bobby” was an absolute monster of the game. Plus, he was in “Escape to Victory.”

West Ham United
The Bobby Moore statue outside Wembley Stadium (Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images)

Mark Noble: There’s something remarkable about everyman Mark Noble, and not because the 32-year-old finishes penalties like a surgeon and looks like the definitive everyman. Doesn’t he give hope to every average-built person on earth? Poor Mark is five appearances from 500 for his career, and will likely meet that milestone by the end of this season, presuming it comes! His 60 goals are seven shy of Carlton Cole’s modern West Ham standard of 67, while his 59 assists lap the field.

Noble (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

Juventus players, staff set to sacrifice up to $100M in wages

Photo by Daniele Badolato - Juventus FC/Juventus FC via Getty Images
Leave a comment

Juventus players and coaches have agreed to forego pay for March, April, May, and June to the tune of approximately $100 million.

The Old Lady has been hit internally by coronavirus, with players Paulo Dybala, Blaise Matuidi, and Daniele Rugani testing positive for COVID-19.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

Italian football federation chief Gabriele Gravina has become a worldwide name during the COVID-19 crisis, and praised the move by Juve’s players and staff (via Football-Italia).

“The agreement reached by Juventus is an example for the whole system. I thank Giorgio Chiellini, his teammates and Maurizio Sarri because, in wake of the collaboration that the FIGC hopes to have in days, they placed general interests at the heart of their conversations with the club.

“Unity and solidarity in the world of football represent the first great response to the emergency we’re experiencing, and that risks becoming even more serious if we don’t resume playing soon. Only through the contribution of all the protagonists, each of them playing their part, will we make football stronger.”

More coronavirus news in soccer:

Turkish legend Rustu Recber isolated in hospital with coronavirus

Rustu Recber coronavirus
Photo by sampics/Corbis via Getty Images
Leave a comment

Turkey’s all-time caps leader has been hospitalized while fighting coronavirus.

Rustu Recber is in isolation and his wife said “while everything was normal, we are still in shock by the sudden and rapidly developing symptoms.”

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

Rustu played for Fenerbahce, Antalyaspor, and Besiktas in a 24-year career which saw him earn 120 caps. He also had a 7-match cameo with Barcelona in 2003/04 and started his career with Burdurgucu.

Rustu’s wife Isil and his two children tested negative, according to the BBC.

From Sky Sports:

Isil Recber said her husband was isolated at the hospital and that they were not allowed to visit. “This is a critical period and very difficult. May God give a speedy recovery to all the patients, including my husband,” she said.

He was a member of the World Cup All-Star team and UEFA Team of the Year in 2002, when he led Turkey to third place at the World Cup. He also helped Turkey to quarterfinal and semifinal runs at EURO.

Rustu won four Turkish Super Lig titles with Fenerbahce and one more with Besiktas.