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'I'm ready when Chelsea need me' - Ex-Blues and Barcelona full-back Belletti aspires to coaching role in Europe

In an exclusive interview with GOAL, former Chelsea and Barcelona full-back Juliano Belletti reveals he is aiming for a coaching job in Europe (Author: Gardener)

EuropeJuliano Belletti can boast of scoring a winning goal in a Champions League final, winning a Premier League title with Chelsea and winning the World Cup with Brazil. It started with a visit to Manchester City to meet directors Ferran Soriano and Txiki Begiristain, whom he met in Barcelona. He then visited former Chelsea youth manager Brendan Rodgers, who is now in charge at Leicester City. He then took some career advice from his friend and compatriot Edu Gaspar, Arsenal's technical director. He wrapped things up with a trip to Barcelona to rekindle his relationship with the club that made him a world-class player. For the people of Britain, however, his connection with Chelsea remains the most curious. Indeed, there was some surprise when he was linked with a post as sporting director at Stamford Bridge, but Belletti is a good friend of Marina Granovskaia and his business skills are respected in west London. Of course, the rumors never materialized, not least because Belletti's goal right now is training. "My relationship with the club is fantastic," Belletti told GOAL. I used to come back here a lot, so a lot of people thought that this (return as sporting director) might happen. "You may still think so, but it's more about having a good relationship with the club. People keep seeing that I travel a lot, but it's about maintaining the relationships and developing them to become even stronger. However working as an assistant coach at Cruzeiro has convinced Belletti that his future is now in management. Belletti wants to be as good a coach as he was a player. That means learning from his friends and playing games like the 2-0 Watching Chelsea's win against Tottenham, which he took part in, shortly after sitting down for this interview to learn from Thomas Tuchel: "That he came in and had the courage to change the whole system and the way it works is spectacular ", enthuses Belletti. "I respect him as a coach. I studied football, so I follow a lot of European teams and how they work I'm watching Chelsea train because of the way Tuchel trains." Sitting in the plush VIP seats at Stamford Bridge, Belletti also saw Thiago Silva dominating a top-flight English football game in the twilight of his career. The Paris Saint-Germain centre-back's move was somewhat similar to Belletti's move from Barcelona to Chelsea as both were at the end of their careers. Seeing his compatriot stand the test of time to deliver such an impressive performance brought back many happy memories for Belletti. “He was such a high-profile player. Of course, when you're old in this sport, people doubt you.” But if you have the right coach, the right tactics for you and the right people around you as a player, it helps you make better use of your experience . "Thiago has the right manager, the right tactics, the right team-mates and the right club. At the same time, he gives back by using his experience to help push the team forward." Belletti feels he drew on his own Champions League experience at Chelsea. Of course, the Blues were beaten by Manchester United in the 2008 final, but he thoroughly enjoyed his time at Stamford Bridge. "My three seasons at Chelsea have been fantastic, both as a player and as a person," he says. "At that age, it was a great achievement for me to play in this team with this group of Chelsea players against Manchester United in a Champions League final. That win, of course, came with Barcelona beating Arsenal in the 2006 final The period at the Camp Nou was obviously the most successful of his career in terms of major titles won, as he also picked up two league-winning medals with the Blaugrana while playing at Cruzeiro, Sao Paulo, Atletico Mineiro during his 17-year touring career , Fluminense and Ceara so while he's made a name for himself in Europe he knows the Brazilian scene inside out.So Belletti has a few words of caution for Chelsea, who go into the upcoming Club World Cup as clear favorites, im final could meet Palmeiras: "Palmeiras won the Copa Libertadores with good football," he emphasizes, "they are a well-established, tactical team with lots of tactics r intensity. "My warning is that Chelsea will find a very difficult opponent." "My goal is to return to Europe and work here," he says. "Edu told me something that it's very rare to find players who have engaged at such a high level and still want to engage in this way. “My motivation is to help my players and my team. I've played for Villarreal, Barcelona and Chelsea. I have good connections there. "I have friends at Manchester City, Brendan Rodgers is my friend and the teams I've played for or people I know could help. I don't want my four sons to see a retired footballer just sitting on the beach. "

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Kick-off time, TV channels and team news

Chelsea are taking a break from home action to attend the FIFA Club World Cup in Abu Dhabi as they take on Al-Hilal in the semifinals on Wednesday (Author: Gardener)

ChelseaChelsea are taking a break from home action to attend the FIFA Club World Cup in Abu Dhabi as they take on Al-Hilal in the semifinals on Wednesday. The postponed FIFA Club World Cup 2021 is underway and Chelsea will play their first game on Wednesday against Saudi Arabian club Al-Hilal in the semi-finals of the competition. The Blues qualified for the tournament after winning the 2020/21 UEFA Champions League in May and it is their second appearance at the Club World Cup, having previously competed in 2012. Their opponent, Al-Hilal, qualified after winning the 2021 Asian Champions League and this is also their second participation in the tournament after 2019. Leonardo Jardim's side edged UAE 6-1 in the previous round on Sunday Pro League club Al-Jazeera through and reached this stage of the competition. Thomas Tuchel will be keen to add another trophy to his Chelsea collection and is expected to play at full strength in the competition, with the Blues being natural favorites to win the whole. Will Chelsea win the FIFA Club World Cup 2021? Let us know what you think in the comments below. Chelsea hope to add another trophy to their collection by winning the Club World Cup this week. When does Al Hilal play Chelsea? Al-Hilal vs Chelsea will kick off on Wednesday 9th February at 16:30 at Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium. However, both sides have been here before - Chelsea took part in the 2012 edition and finished second, while Al-Hilal took part in the 2019 edition and finished fourth. The match has been selected for live broadcast and will be televised on E4 in the UK, with coverage starting at 4pm. Get £30 in FREE BETS when you bet £10 on Al-Hilal vs Chelsea with Grosvenor Sport. Get £30 in FREE BETS to use on the Premier League! Grosvenor Sport is offering new customers £30 FREE BETS when you bet as little as £10 on any football match! Join Grosvenor Sport, place a £10 bet on any football match and your account will be credited with £30 in free bets! After Sunday's 6-1 win over Al Jazira, Jardim is expected to name an unchanged side for the clash against Chelsea as Al-Hilal hopes to record a historic victory. The Saudi club have Odion Ighalo in their ranks, who scored in the previous game, along with former West Bromwich Albion winger Matheus Periera, former Watford loanee Andre Carrillo and veteran ex-Porto striker Moussa Marega. In the 2021/22 Premier League season, 200 live games will be spread over three channels. Sky Sports retains the rights to most of these games with 128 live matches. They also own the rights to the Carabao Cup and several international games. Check out the latest Sky deals here. BT Sport holds the rights to 52 live Premier League games. Amazon's 20 live Premier League games will return in the 2022/23 season. A handful of games from the 21/22 season, which are due to take place before the New Year, will also still be broadcast. A late decision on Edouard Mendy will be made following his return from Sunday's Africa Cup of Nations win with Senegal, along with Mason Mount, who picked up an injury on Saturday.

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Romelu Lukaku fires Chelsea into Club World Cup final

Romelu Lukaku fires Chelsea into Club World Cup final (Author: Gardener)

Romelu LukakuThis website uses cookies for analytics, personalized content and ads. By continuing to browse this site, you agree to this use. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience. Al-Hilal v Chelsea, Fifa Club World Cup semi-finals live: results and latest updates - Michael Regan/FIFA via Getty Images Lukaku scores first goal in six games Chelsea will have a chance to take it to a full house under owner Roman under Roman Trophies Abramovich thanks to a Romelu Lukaku goal that secured a final place at the Club World Cup against Palmeiras. Saturday's final will also give Lukaku his first chance to win a silver with Chelsea and the Belgian's performance in Abu Dhabi was a little encouraging. But head coach Thomas Tuchel, who is isolating at home in England after testing positive for coronavirus, will have been bouncing around his living room in frustration as he watched Chelsea nearly throw away their place in the final. Goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga had to make two excellent saves in the second half and former West Bromwich Albion midfielder Matheus Pereira shot just inches wide of goal with a powerful shot that was just about enough. Amid all the troubling moments, there was something to look forward to for Tuchel, who spoke to his backroom staff at half-time, not least the understanding between Lukaku and Kai Havertz, who started his first Chelsea game in over a month. Lukaku's first-half goal may have been thanks to a terrible defense from Al-Hilal defender Yasser Al-Shahrani, but he looked mau-engaged and much more involved when Havertz played alongside him on Wednesday night. "Everyone is very happy he scored," said Chelsea assistant coach Zsolt Low. “He fought very hard and put in a lot of effort in the last game. We were hoping for a bit of luck today to score a goal. He's very happy, we're very happy and we hope he goes on and scores in the final. "Kai had a good week of training, so we decided to let him play. He did his job very well, he faced some dangerous situations and worked hard to fill gaps. He played well." However, Low acknowledged that overall Chelsea's performance was far from perfect, saying: "We lacked a bit of freedom and rhythm. That's why we didn't manage to find the easy solution and score more goals.” We spoke to Thomas at half-time and had a good chat. He had the same feeling that we were a bit nervous and had a lot of easy turnovers. Four of Lukaku's nine goals are now on the pitch with Havertz and finally there have been signs of encouragement that Chelsea may have found a way to make the most of his club record signing. Sure the opposition might not have been top notch, as evidenced by the way Al-Shahrani sent Havertz's cross straight back to Lukaku for the forward to score from three yards out, but the pair clearly enjoyed playing together. Havertz stayed much closer to Lukaku on the right than Hakim Ziyech and that was evident As early as the second minute, the German and Belgian tried to find each other whenever possible as Lukaku tried to play Havertz on goal, but he was ruled offside. Lukaku had saved a shot from a tight angle and then cursed further down the field when he completely missed his shot following a low cross from Cesar Azpilicueta. The goal came in the 32nd minute and despite his unkempt nature, a weight seemed to fall from Lukaku's shoulders, who combined superbly with Havertz just before half-time to chip Ziyech away, but the Moroccan's shot was saved. Ziyech, lively again, saw another shot stopped in the second half after Lukaku deflected a header back into his path. Havertz hit the outside post just after the break and Lukaku was furious that Marcos Alonso couldn't find him after being reconnected with Havertz who had given the Spaniard a great opportunity to register an assist. Alonso's performance will have been a cause for concern for Tuchel, with Ben Chilwell out for the season and Chelsea not signing another left-back in the January transfer window, he spoke to his team-mate in the first half. Having weathered the storm that saw them nearly concede to their Saudi opponents on three occasions, Chelsea should have clinched the win when Lukaku rushed on goal with 10 minutes to go. Under pressure, he checked back and set up substitute Mason Mount, whose shot went wide. Lukaku perhaps should have taken the shot himself, but at least it was a step in the right direction for the 28-year-old, who wants Havertz alongside him more often. Tuchel could also revisit the pair in person if he can test negative in time to join his squad in Saturday's final against the Brazilian club, which could have as many as 15,000 fans at the stadium. Sign up for the free Front Page newsletter: your essential guide to The Telegraph's agenda - delivered straight to your inbox, seven days a week. Chelsea were poor in the second half, allowing Al-Hilal far too much possession and territory. 18:20Kepa turns down the clock and takes his time with a goal kick. 18:19 The first of three minutes of added time ends with Azpilicueta firing a cross from the right through the six yard box which deflects and deflects behind Havertz who he tries to deflect at the far post. 06:17 PMLukaku is still taking positions that suit him best, but his teammates aren't playing the ball there. 06:15 PMAzpilicueta picks out Mount's fine run from the right side of the box. Mount takes a touch and tries to slice it back to Lukaku, but Cuellar gets there first and knocks it out for a corner. 18:13 18:13 Mount constantly leaves his boot in while tackling or nudges his marker to pull it up. 18:11 Al-Hilal sends Carillo and Michael for Salem and Pereira. 06:09 PMLukaku's first touch drops him to the ground as he's sent inside left and he rolls over the ball rather than either shooting or passing to Havertz to send it flying. He has to double back and pass to Mount on the edge of the D instead, and his low shot is deflected to the corner. Thirty seconds earlier, Ighalo wanted a free-kick when he appeared to be clipped by Thiago Silva from 25 yards out, but the referee doesn't count it as a foul. 18:05 Great duel by Rüdiger stops Marega in the Chelsea penalty area. Al-Hilal has been the better side since the break. 18:04Mount goes down the right side of the penalty area after a quick pass initiated by Kovacic. However, he tries to force a flank in a very small space, the ball is deflected back to the keeper. He had plenty of yellow shirts for backup that he could use instead of going it alone. 06:01 PMMount has to block Shahrani's cross and Al-Hilal takes a corner. Jang hits Lukaku and Kante at the near post to take the corner and blasts his header a foot from the top left corner. Thiago Silva is not impressed by his teammates. 17:59 Ziyech is pulled to his feet by Albulayhi when he tried to eat some time before a throw-in and reacts angrily. 17:57 17:57 Chelsea right corner. Ziyech sticks it to Havertz's head but he can't beat Almuaiouf. Al-Hilal breaks in on the right, Marega bombs Alonso away, cutting him back for Ighalo, who has to back up a few steps to get him and turn to shoot Rudiger in the legs. The ball bounces off the box and Kanno unleashes a brutal shot and Kepa jumps up to his left to knock it over the bar. 05:54 PMCuellar is booked for wrapping his right knee around Havertz, who rushed away from him and halfway towards the box. 05:53 PM Peira takes it himself but pumps his left footed shot straight into the wall. 5:52 p.m.: The corner fizzles but Pereira wins a free-kick when Havertz shoves it away from 25 yards right of center. 05:51 PMKepa saves a Marega smash and grab after Albulayhi slides a pass inside right and the former Porto striker hits his angled shot. Kepa does a long lock and saves with his legs. 17:49 17:48 Nice move from Chelsea with Kante winning the ball, hitting it over his head and spinning to roll it to the right. Azpilicueta lashes over the cross, Lukaku heads it back to Ziyech, who slices his left foot over the volley and sends his shot towards the top left corner. Almuaiouf assumes his right to scrape it away. 17:45 Rudiger plays the diagonal from left to right. Ziyech is caught offside, sparing his blush as his attempted catch with his left foo knocked the ball out of play. Should have gone right. 17:44 Chelsea have a good penalty call from the corner as Christensen is knocked down but neither the referee nor VAR are convinced by the idea. 05:42 PMLukaku charges down the right flank, deposits it on his left to Havertz pulling the defender, then slides it out for Marcos Alonso. Lukaku wants the cross into the space in front of the keeper to continue, but Alonso makes the wrong choice and scores behind Lukaku and has to settle for a corner. Chelsea fail to clear their lines properly as Al-Hilal's Pereira and Alburayk check down the right, recycling the ball in quick one-two passes until they set up a shot that flies over the bar. 17:36 Havertz slips into the penalty area on the left in soft shoes, evoking memories of Oporto and trying to hit him over the goalkeeper with his left hand, but unlike in the Champions League final, this attempt rattles the post and the side netting weighed. 17:35 Good possession and a longer attack on the right end with Alburayk jumping over Kovacic's leg. 05:33 PMAl-Hilal starts and plays the ball back to Jang, who bounces it 50 yards up and invites to a dogfight that ends with Al-Hilal throwing in. 05:18 PMAl-Hilal are neat and nimble, but lack forward penetration. Chelsea were more impressive as the game progressed, dominating territory and flanks if not possession and could have scored a handful more had Ziyech, Havertz and Marcos Alonso all had very good shots on target. 05:15 PMAlonso shoots wide from 25 yards and after the ensuing goal kick, which Chelsea quickly recover, Ziyech puts a shot straight to Almuaiouf's throat. Chelsea's Romelu Lukaku scores his team's first goal behind Al Hilal's Abdullah Almuaiouf during the FIFA Club World Cup UAE 2021 semi-final match between Al Hilal and Chelsea FC - Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images Chelsea's Romelu Lukaku scores his team's first goal Teams Passing Al Hilal's Abdullah Almuaiouf during the FIFA Club World Cup UAE 2021 Semi Final match between Al Hilal and Chelsea FC - Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images Chelsea's Romelu Lukaku scores her team's first goal behind Al Hilal's Abdullah Almuaiouf during of the FIFA Club World Cup UAE 2021 semi-final match between Al Hilal and Chelsea FC – Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images 05:13 PMLukaku controls a cross from the left, saves Albulayhi, turns and puts it perfectly to Ziyech, whose first shot , blocked with left, diito be follow up with right. But the flag then goes up to punish Lukaku for being offside. 5:11pmJorginho buys a free-kick by running ahead of Marega as the two chase a pass, then slowing so he accidentally gets pinched. 17:09 If Chelsea had a viable orthodox left-back, they could get an extra midfielder that would allow them to give Lukaku more support down the middle. 05:07 PMSalem slices down the left wing after a skillful passing game with left-back Shahrani who loves to keep bombing. Salem turns over the 18 and unleashes a right footed rising shot that keeps rising until he clears the bar. 17:05 Good finish from Lukaku but it was served to him on a silver platter by Shahrani's distraction. 05:04 PMHavertz's tenacity allows him to cross with the right after his first attempt at a cross hits Alburayk and comes back to him. It clears Lukaku but hits Shahrani who may have expected Lukaku to reach it. The ball bounces back over the goal area and Lukaku shoots a half-volley with his right instep from six meters into the goal. 17:02 17:00 Ziyech spins Shahrani with a shoulder dip and a 180 rotation, but that means he has to cross with his right and it's weaker than it should be for Albulayhi to head away. 04:58 PMAlonso can't make a simple pass from the left side of the box to one of his three teammates who are well placed to shoot. 16:57 Excellent pass from Kovacic after a stormy run down the left inside line. Lukaku takes it with a stride and hits a side foot shot with his left that Almuaiouf, who had narrowed Jang's angle, holds at his feet. 04:55 PMShaharani makes a good run down the left, exchanging passes with Salem and whipping over a cross, looking for Ighalo but Chelsea heads it out of the box and Al-Hilala comes back down the left. 04:52 PMZiyech attempts a few step-overs but then catches the ball with his shoe as he attempts a third and hits it too far in front of him. 04:51 PMHavertz is brought in by Kovacic on the left and cuts back on the right to float a cross to the back post. Azpilicueta hits and controls a volley back to the six yard line, but Lukaku had already made his move and couldn't come back to reach it. Azpilicueta angrily points to where he expected Lukaku to be. An Al Hilal fan shows his support ahead of the FIFA Club World Cup UAE 2021 semi-final match between Al Hilal and Chelsea FC - Tullio Puglia - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images 04:48 PMLukaku has a chance at the near post as Azpilicueta a hisses ball opposite from the right. He's in front of the keeper and only needs a swerve to crush him against the post, but he misses the ball completely. 04:46 PMLukaku is caught offside in Al-Hilal's trap when Ziyech threads the ball into the box between Shahrani and Albulayhi. He fires from an angle of about 20 degrees, but Almuaiouf has him completely covered. 16:45 Al-Hilal looks decent up front but mistakes creep in on the defensive. 16:44 A fine duel from Albulayhi stops Lukaku, who pushes his way through the penalty area for the price of a corner. Kovacic catches Ighalo late and goes in the book. 04:42 PMSlick Chelsea attack on the right with Kovacic and Azpilicueta works the ball to Ziyech on D's right. He runs to the pass and thunders a left foot shot that swerves wildly and goes over the corner of the left post and the crossbar. The way he slices his foot across a moving ball made him act like a drunk wasp. 4:39pm Thiago Silva gallops forward and finds a huge space in front of Jang so he unleashes a 30-yarder right foot that flies wide. 04:37 PMAlonso runs a long left to right diagonal that sails past Azpilicueta. 04:36 PMZiyech has an opportunity to thread a pass to the right, but he smudges it. As Pat Nevin, the best of all co-comms, points out, Al-Hilal deploys a very high line of defense. This should be done for Lukaku. 16:35 Kepa hits the ball halfway through Thiago's back pass but he doesn't stay with Lukaku and Al-Hilal takes the sting out of the attack by playing it around the back. Al-Hilal has played a lot of possession so far and seems confident. 04:33 PMHavertz is called offside when things looked close but it wouldn't have mattered much anyway as he almost tripped over Lukaku's pass down the inside left. Chelsea regain the ball from a free kick but Azpilicueta misses his pass over the line to put Ziyech in Shahrani's back. 4:31pm No knee kick before kick-off today and Lukaku rolls the ball back, snapping Al-Hilal into the tackle, catching Jorginho in possession and giving Ighalo a shot from 25 yards but he tamely drags it wide. 16:25 The Chelsea tunnel teams line up in yellow with the black horizontal pinstripes. Al-Hilal in blue. 04:12 PMIghalo and Pereira scored the opening two goals in a 6-1 win over Abu Dhabi's Al-Jazira to qualify for the semi-finals. Chelsea and Copa Libertadores winners Palmeiras receive byes for the semi-final stage. Today's winners meet Palmeiras, who defeated Al-Ahly yesterday, in Saturday's final. Thomas Tuchel, who has tested positive for Covid and is not in the UAE, could be watching along with Jimbo. 16:01 Played a minute in Manchester United's 2-0 win over Chelsea in February 2020 and 15 minutes in their 3-1 FA Cup defeat in lockdown July. West Brom's Matheus Pereira, as he was then known, scored twice in a 5-2 win at Stamford Bridge last April. 15:56 Your lineups in black and white 15:44 15:43 📋 This is our squad for the #ClubWC semifinals ☑️ — AlHilal Saudi Club (@Alhilal_EN) February 9, 2022 15:23 Hakim Ziyech has defended Romelu Lukaku by scoring insists Chelsea will see the best of his club record. Lukaku has been under pressure since the controversial interview he gave in which he hinted he was unhappy with the way he was being used by head coach Thomas Tuchel. The Belgian has netted just once, against Chesterfield, after being dropped from a game as a penalty and becoming an unpopular figure with some supporters. But Ziyech, who is a close friend of Lukaku's, is adamant he'll be back in top form soon. Asked if he's confident Chelsea will watch the best of their £97.5million signing from Inter, Ziyech replied: "Of course. But I mean, he came here and everything was fine in the beginning. It's just a matter of time." Lukaku and Ziyech were caught debating how best to interact with each other on the pitch during the Chelsea game in Brighton last month and the Moroccan admitted the entire Team must share some of the responsibility for the striker's struggles "Everyone [has to adapt to him]," said Ziyech. “Everyone in the squad [can give him chances], not just me, everyone in the squad. "I think that's something we need to improve on and we're still working on that. Sometimes it's really good in games and sometimes a little less. I think there is still a lot of room for improvement. “If you look at some teams we play against, they play in a back five. Of course, it doesn't matter who you are, when you have three defenders it's difficult to find your space or whatever. He also needs his space for his runs or whatever. It's really difficult at the moment, it's tough.” Like Lukaku now, Ziyech has had a tough time but benefited from Tuchel returning to the back four more regularly and using him in a more traditional position from the cross. Speaking in Abu Dhabi, where Chelsea are taking part in the Club World Cup, Ziyech said: “You have more space and more freedom on the right wing. I think I'm a player that could really use that.” Man with foot fetish who forced girlfriend to always wear socks, in prison

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Club World Cup Semi-Finals - Live Reaction!

Minute-by-minute report: Stay tuned to Michael Butler as Chelsea scramble for a place in Abu Dhabi final (Author: Gardener)

Michael ButlerThis website uses cookies for analytics, personalized content and ads. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience. Minute-by-minute report: Stay tuned to Michael Butler as Chelsea bid for a place in Abu Dhabi finals. "I agree (and since I'm bald I couldn't blame anyone for shortcomings in that area anyway), but I've noticed that his recent performances, which have been a little off, have coincided with him becoming a more feathered, almost '80s -like style changed hairstyle. I think the hairspray might weigh him down!” Chelsea were expected to tumble past the Saudi side, but that 1-0 win took hard work. Romelu Lukaku's goal in the first half was accidental and bounced off Al-Shahrani's hip and the Blues were kept in the game in the second half by a series of great saves from Kepa. "Chelsea looked tired," says Jimmy Floyd-Hasselbaink in the studio at E4 (!), and it's hard to disagree. Chelsea are in the final of the Club World Cup. A totally unconvincing performance and the other finalists, Brazil side Palmeiras, will be licking their lips at Chelsea's performance. Chelsea's Andreas Christensen and Kepa Arrizabalaga (left) celebrate after the game. 86 min: That was a poor half from Chelsea but they at least regained possession in those last five minutes or so. Chelsea's Andreas Christensen (right) battles with Al Hilal's Odion Ighalo. 90+2 mins: Kepa wasted time showing the nervousness with which Chelsea approach those final minutes. 90 min: A real duel of the heavyweights, Rüdiger meets Marega, the German prevails. 88 minutes: Chelsea make the last change: Sarr continues for Alonso. 84 min: Not quite sure what the reasoning is for playing Mount on the right wing. The England midfielder is so much better in a central number 10 role and has had a torrid period since coming on. Hudson-Odoi would have been a much more natural choice, but it's hard to say if that's Tuchel's choice or Low. 82 min: Two yellow cards for mention, one for each side. Kovacic is penalized for a late tackle in the box by Al-Hilal before Al-Bulayhi goes in the book as well. 80 min: Ten more minutes and Al-Hilal goes broke. 78 min: Chelsea break, and Lukuku hits the offside track. Lukaku decides to check his run and wait for backup. He returns the ball to Mount, but Kanno makes a crucial block to keep it 1-0! 76 min: Ighalo gets past Thiago Silva and goes down but the referee isn't interested. 74 min: Mount really has a beautiful head of hair. 72 min: This is a much needed change for Chelsea that really makes this game go through. Another chance comes for Al-Hilal, Jang heads just wide from a corner. 70 mins: Ziyech goes down in a crumpled heap hoping for a free kick but to no avail. Ziyech has a frustrating second half as he replaces Mason Mount. 52 min: Kante looks a bit rusty, you have to say that. Since the Frenchman came on at half-time, a number of passes have gone wrong. Chelsea's N'Golo Kante (left) battles with Al Hilal's Salem Al Dawsari. 48 min: Havertz hits the post! The German flies down the left wing, holds off Al-Burayk with ease and dribbles into the six-yard box. Havertz's touch is a little heavy but he manages to slap the ball over the keeper only for the ball to hit the outside of the post and bounce clear! Chelsea's Kai Havertz throws the ball over Al Hilal's goalkeeper Abdullah Al-Muaiouf. 67 min: Double chance for Al-Hilal. Marega slides through the right wing, slices the ball back to Ighalo. The Nigerian blocked his shot on target but the rebound fell to Kanno who sent a whirling shot straight into the post but Kepa jumped over to make a wonderful one-handed save! Chelsea is clinging a bit here! 64 min: A very professional foul by Cuellar, who stops Havertz in midfield in his lanes. 61 min: Golden chance for Marega, but Kepa storms out with a brilliant save. Matheus Pereira, who has really come alive in that second half, slides a beautifully weighted pass past the side of Chelsea's defense and Marega dashes towards it, stabilizing but seeing a low shot saved by Kepa. 59 mins: Ziyech volleys towards the top corner after a nice flap from Lukaku, but Almuaiouf makes a quality save to his right, getting both hands on the ball and collecting the rebound. 57 min: Ighalo with his first goal! Matheus Pereira finds a gap in midfield and feeds the Nigerian but Thiago Silva makes a great block to save Ighalo's shot. 54 min: Penalty for Chelsea when Christensen goes down in the Al Hilal box after a fairly obvious retreat in the box from Cuellar. 50 mins: Al-Hilal with their best possession time of the game, with Kanno ending the move with a powerful shot just a yard or two over Kepa's crossbar. A change at Chelsea: Jorginho was replaced by Kanté. It is not clear whether this is due to an injury or a tactical change. Halftime reading, here's the Fiver, fresh out of the oven. Related: The Fiver | David Moyes lends a tin ear to the Kurt Zouma Kicking His Cat episode. It's 1-0 but could be so much more. Regarding Chelsea, that Thiago Silva ends the first half on the ground rubbing his knee. 45 mins: Al-Hilal has a promising free-kick on the edge of Chelsea's box but they take it short and Salem squirts a harmless shot towards Kepa. At least the Spaniard saved now! Havertz charges to the touchline and gets his cross the second time he asks. The ball bounces off Yasir Gharsan Al-Shahrani's hip and lands friendly at Lukaku, four yards away. The Belgian makes no mistake and sweeps the loose ball into the net. Romelu Lukaku slides the ball past Al Hilal keeper Abdullah Almuaiouf to give Chelsea the lead. Photo: Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC/Getty Images 42 mins: Was really disappointed with Matheus Pereira, Salem and Kanno all beaming in the 6-1 win over Al Jazira. The first half just passed them by. 40 mins: Really good hold-up play from Lukuku, who collects a lofted pass from deep, holds Jang back and puts in a perfect pass for Ziyech, who blocked two shots in the box. Lukaku was actually just offside in the warm-up, but the Belgian is purring at the moment and has the Al Hilal defense on skates. 38 min: Jorginho is lucky, gets a soft free-kick just as Marega rushes away on the counter. 35 mins: Al-Hilal's first real cut as Al-Shahrani deftly swings to release Salem on the left wing. Salem slices inside but shoots his effort high and wide from the top of the box. 33 min: How will Al-Hilal react? Kepa is yet to make a save in the Chelsea goal. 27 min: Feels like it's just a matter of time for Chelsea. 25 min: It's been a frustrating half-time for Lukaku so far but you can see Al-Hilal's defenders are scared of the Belgian. Lukaku is fed a pass by Kovacic and the striker shrugs off Ali Al-Bulaihi's attention before unleashing a fierce shot that goes straight to Abdullah Al-Mayouf in Al-Hilal's goal. 23 min: Fifa President Giovanni Infantino is here, apparently walled in by a barricade of sponsored mineral water in his hospitality area. 20 min: Another chance for Chelsea! Havertz sets up a perfect cross at the back post, Azpilicueta comes in and could easily volley it into goal but instead rebounds a touch back to the penalty spot, crucial behind Lukaku, who burst into the box. Are Chelsea too reluctant to put numbers forward? There doesn't seem to be a natural No. 8, with Jorginho and Kovacic's double pivot. 10 min: Ziyech is the last to fly, from the top of the D, but this one hisses a yard away! Chelsea is getting closer. Actually, the Moroccan should have scored, he fell so nicely on his favorite left foot. Chelsea's Hakim Ziyech has a pop from distance. Chelsea will start, with Romelu Lukaku leading the line. Al Hilal (left) and Chelsea players line up alongside the match officials before kick-off. 17 min: A missed shot by Lukaku! Azpilicueta swings a low cross and Lukaku is first to the near post but doesn't get any contact and the ball rolls harmlessly over Al-Hilal's six yard box. 14 min: Al-Hilal Break on the counter! Chelsea are caught briefly when Matheus Pereira finds some space on the left wing and switches play to Marega. Marcos Alonso misses his clearing header completely and the ball rolls over Marega's boot! 12 min: Kovacic is lucky to avoid a warning after a nasty duel with Ighalo. Should be a yellow card and Jardim gives his opinion to the fourth official on the touchline. 8 min: Thiago Silva whips out a long-range shot from 30 yards but it distorts wide. 7 mins: Al-Hilal has set himself up in a 4-2-3-1 with Ighalo leading the line. Chelsea's 3-4-3 is the formation that Tuchel prefers, especially in the Champions League. 5 min: Al-Hilal's defence, led by South Korean centre-back Jang Hyun-soo, plays a terribly high line here. It's a dangerous game with Lukaku and Havertz both trying to get behind. 4 min: Around 1,000 hardy souls have started the journey from London to Abu Dhabi. However, they are drowned out by Al Hilal support. 1 min: A nervous start for Chelsea as Kovacic loses his footing at the base of midfield. Matheus Pereira tumbles and Ighalo has plenty of time to stabilize for a shot on the edge of the area but poorly extends his shot when he had options outside of him! This tournament serves as a test event for Robo VAR, which is set to be used in the World Cup later this year and in the domestic leagues in 2023-24. I've been telling you all this for a long time, now see it in action. Semi-automatic VAR starts at Club World Cup. — Dale Johnson (@DaleJohnsonESPN) February 4, 2022 Riyadh is less than a two-hour flight from Abu Dhabi, so it's no surprise that Al Hilal supporters are out in full force. Photo: Suhaib Salem/Reuters Photo: Suhaib Salem/Reuters Photo: Suhaib Salem/Reuters Photo: Suhaib Salem/Reuters Photo: Suhaib Salem/Reuters Both teams normally play in royal blue and as the designated away team, it will be Chelsea with their modified yellow stripe. Chelsea's Marcos Alonso and Jorginho warming up. Speaking on the sidelines in Abu Dhabi, Petr Cech, Chelsea's current technical and performance advisor and goalkeeper for the 2021 final: It's a memory I regret. In 2012 we had expectations of coming back with the trophy, but we missed a few chances. First-team coach Zsolt Low, who is replacing Tuchel due to Germany's positive Covid tests, was full of praise for Cech ahead of tonight's game. He's a great guy and supports us very well these days. Petr is with us all the time. If we need him, he will always get in touch, but he doesn't want to constantly disturb us and participate in every discussion and meeting. He has been very supportive and we are very happy that he is with us. It's worth noting that Matheus Pereira scored two goals and provided two assists against Chelsea in a sensational 5-2 win for West Brom at Stamford Bridge last year... Losing in the 2012 Club World Cup final is still smart for César Azpilicueta. Chelsea, who had been crowned Champions League winners just months earlier, were confident of securing a sixth straight win for a European side but South American champions Corinthians brought the chances to a 1-0 win, thanks to a brilliant performance from Paulinho in midfield, a goal from Peru striker Paolo Guerrero and some superb goalkeeping from Cássio Ramos, with Chelsea disallowing a Fernando Torres goal shortly after Gary Cahill was sent off. Azpilicueta, who joined Chelsea earlier this season and is now approaching a decade at the club, winced when reminded of that defeat this week. It remains the only trophy he has yet to win with the Blues. It's very difficult to be in this tournament, after 10 years you realize how difficult it is. It hurt a lot in 2012 and it's the only competition the club didn't win. Winning for the club for the first time is huge, we have to do everything for ourselves. We represent Europe; we know it will be difficult. A place in the final against Brazilian club Palmeiras is at stake, while today's semi-final opponents are Saudi Arabia's Al-Hilal Chelsea. Al-Hilal celebrated the biggest win in Club World Cup history as they beat Al Jazira 6-1 on Monday to reach this stage, along with Odion Ighalo (ex-Watford and Manchester United), Matheus Pereira (ex-West Brom) and Peru's André Carrillo and powerful striker Moussa Marega (ex-Porto) all make the goalscoring list. They're tricky opponents, led by former Monaco manager Leonardo Jardim, but just two days off since the last round will stand Chelsea in good stead. The Londoners, however, traveled to Abu Dhabi without Thomas Tuchel, who is still in quarantine after testing positive for Covid-19 last Friday. Kick-off is at 16:30 GMT or 20:30 if you're in Abu Dhabi.

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Arveladze admits Hull was 'weak' in Derby County defeat

The Rams returned to winning ways Tuesday night with a 3-1 win over Hull City in the Championship (Author: Gardener)

Derby CountyHull City manager Shota Arveladze admitted his side performed "poorly" in the 3-1 defeat at Derby County at Pride Park. Hull pulled back a goal when Forsyth deflected a Lewis Potter cross into his own net, but it proved only consolation for the visitors, who were now suffering back-to-back defeats. "It's hard for me to explain why we were so weak in things that we're really good at," said Arveladze. "Like teamwork, winning first and second balls, we're good at that, but today we lost balls like that. "We started well and things went as we discussed. We talked about some things that worked well, but after the goal we lose every ball and every jump was for Derby. "Then with the second goal we have three players looking at each other. As I said, we are good as a team and we work hard, but today was disappointing." Derby boss Wayne Rooney, on the other hand, was satisfied with his team's performance. "It [Hull] was a big game for us after the last two results so it was a huge win," Rooney said. "The last couple of games weren't the results we wanted, we know that, the last three games actually." I think we passed zero [points] three times this season! "It's a completely different style of play [this season]. "I think (goalkeeper) Ryan Allsop has been a huge advantage for us in terms of how we want to play, how we want to build up. He is dangerous when it comes to making us play and launching attacks and also with his long passes to the outside spaces. The teams are concerned because they know we can play the ball over and behind them. A solid overall performance."

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The Sheikh Khaled Derby County takeover company is to be dissolved

Derby County's latest DerbyshireLive takeover news brings an update on the company set up by Sheikh Khaled bin Zayed Al Nehayan to buy the club in September 2020 (Author: Gardener)

Khaled Derby CountyA deal has been agreed for Sheikh Khaled to take over Derby A deal has been agreed for Sheikh Khaled to take over Derby . Derventio Holdings (UK) Limited was incorporated in September 2020 listing Sheikh Khaled bin Zayed Al Nehayan as the “Person of Significant Control”. Sheikh Khaled has been linked with a takeover of Liverpool and Newcastle United before buying Derby and a deal was 'in principle' agreed to take over the Pride Park side in November 2020. Now, Companies House shows the company will officially shut down on February 23, after being told in November of an upcoming move to shut down the company. The name Derventio was an allusion to the Roman name of the city of Derby and the 'nature of business' is listed as sports club activities. Derby is currently in administration, with Morris making the decision to appoint management consultancy Quantuma to oversee the club's affairs in September. Derby also saw a takeover by Spanish businessman Erik Alonso fall through, although both the club and the boxing promoter had agreed to the terms of the sale.

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Fallon Sherrock in the Premier League? Michael van Gerwen, Peter Wright, Gerwyn Price and Michael Smith have their say

Poll Fallon Sherrock's rivals about their Premier League qualifications and the verdict tends to be unanimous - grab the tour ticket and then let's talk. (Author: Gardener)

Michael van GerwenFallon Sherrock in the Premier League? Fallon Sherrock in the Premier League? Michael van Gerwen, Peter Wright, Gerwyn Price and Michael Smith have their say Michael van Gerwen, Peter Wright, Gerwyn Price and Michael Smith have their say Quiz Fallon Sherrock's rivals on their Premier League qualifications and the verdict tends to be unanimous - secure Check out this tour map and then let's talk. It's perhaps a testament to their rise to date that Sherrock falls into the run-of-the-mill “earn your shot” category; Here she is a legitimate person to watch for years to come, with the degree, global reach and big stage skills that others around her pursuing a Premier League spot can only dream of. If the reaction to her future claim is "change the tune", it should be remembered that Sherrock has never once sought recognition as anything other than a competitive player, nor has she personally intruded on the Premier League discussion. Sherrock recently missed out on a PDC Tour Card after failing to qualify for Q-School and subsequently failed to make it when the eight-man field for this season's reformatted Premier League was announced. "The first step I think she needs to focus on is trying to get a tour card and obviously do well in the women's series and build something bigger from there," said Michael van Gerwen. Masters champion Joe Cullen makes his debut in the competition after winning his maiden PDC Major title, while Michael Smith and Gerwyn Price return after missing last year, with the latter being replaced by James Wade after showing positively tested for COVID. Recently crowned two-time world champion Peter Wright believes Sherrock would have stood a chance had the field been bigger. "I think if more players were involved, yes," Snakebite said. If there were 10 players I might have said she would get a squeak. But as there are only eight left I could pick another six players who could play in this Premier League so it's very difficult to choose. She impressed again when her World Series bow reached the finals of the Nordic Darts Masters in September, only to lose to Van Gerwen 11-7, and reached the quarterfinals of the Grand Slam of Darts in November. "If they start a women's Premier League, maybe she'll be there," Price said. World Championship finalist Smith added: “She needs a tour card first and then if she gets a tour card and plays with us at the circuit, who knows. At the moment I think the selection we have with these eight players is the best at the moment." Sherrock led the Order of Merit of the PDC Women's Series 2021 and qualified for the Grand Slam and the World Darts Championship alongside Lisa Ashton can book her return to the Grand Slam in 2022 by winning the newly announced Women's World Matchplay, which will be the first PDC women's tournament to be fully televised.The competition will see the top eight players in the Women's Series Order of Merit Looking ahead to 2022 for the 12 events scheduled to take place in the first half of the year. Price believes a continued commitment to expanding women's football can help its growth across all platforms. "Possibly they could do more women's tournaments," he said. "I think they used to do it in the BDO, they let the women and men play on the same nights and just the women's side de s game and the men's side of the game. "So maybe the women's world matchplay, the women's world championship, the women's grand slam, that way would probably promote the game better for the women's side of the game from Deta Hedman and Mikuru Suzuki. The first of the 12 Women's Series events will take place in Barnsley over the weekend of March 12-13, followed by a meet in Wigan and a return to Barnsley. "I think that's great - great for the checkers game and great for the youngsters - the young girls, young women out there, to give them something," Wright said. Van Gerwen added: "I think not only for the development of our women's game, I think it's good for the development of darts worldwide. "Of course it's all part of it and they have to work really hard because women's darts still has to do one travel a long way.

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'He's got so much' - Wayne Rooney highlights the Derby County star after his performance against Hull

Wayne Rooney was full of praise for Festy Ebosele after his outstanding performance last night. The Derby boss singled out Ebosele for his performance, praising his overall game as well as his athleticism and how much work he put in […] (Author: Gardener)

Wayne RooneyWayne Rooney was full of praise for Festy Ebosele after his outstanding performance last night. Ebosele scored in Derby County's 3-1 win over Hull City on Tuesday night. The Derby manager hailed Ebosele for his performance, praising his overall game and athleticism and how much work he put into improving his game in training. He still has a lot to learn and improve of course, but you can see his development since the start of the season," Rooney said of the Irish Independent. "Not only technically - he's raw and fast and can beat a player - but his fitness has also improved massively. It's a credit to how he trained," Rooney said. "I'm really happy and felt the performance was very good." Rooney admitted he was concerned about Ebosele's performance in the early stages but later settled into the game quite well. We've asked Festy Ebosele to stay outside and try to isolate her and get into one-on-one situations; we did great. "We could have scored a few more goals with a little more care on the final cross and final pass, but I thought it was a very good performance overall." Last night's win brought Derby to four safety points while they fight against relegation to League One. Derby received a 21-point deduction as punishment for going into administration in September. It was a fantastic performance from Ebosele and to be praised by Rooney will give his confidence a huge boost. At 19, Ebosele has already shown signs that he is a very special talent and Derby has really facilitated his development as a player. He's another example of how Rooney has done a great job of using young players during what has been a difficult time for the club. If Ebosele can continue those performances, he might even be called up to the senior team for the first time next March.

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Rooney hails massive Derby County victory and warns of struggle for survival

The win over Hull City means the gap between the Rams and safety in the Championship has fallen to four points (Author: Gardener)

Derby CountyWayne Rooney described the win over Hull City as "massive" as Derby County looks to weather the odds and avoid relegation this season. The Rams have had a total of 21 points deducted throughout the season and yet they are threatening to pull off what would be the greatest of all football escapes. Three points from Tuesday night's 3-1 win over Hull at Pride Park Stadium means the gap between the Rams and Reading, who sit just outside the drop zone, has fallen to four points. Derby have 18 points with Reading 22. "It [Hull] was a big game for us after the last two results so it was a massive win," said Rooney. "The last few games weren't the results we wanted, we know that, the last three games actually. We know that, but don't panic.” It goes on, but we've said that for a long time, even afterwards. In the end we ended up with minus 21 points. I think we passed zero [points] three times this season! "It's a completely different style of play [this season]. He's a threat when he gets us playing and launching attacks and also with his long passes into the wide areas. Teams are worried because they know we're can place the ball." above them and behind them.” I felt the performance had a little bit of everything – rawness, energy, composure and discipline. A solid overall performance." When asked about the fight to stay up, Rooney said: "We think we can but it takes a lot of hard work and effort and that's what the guys have given me since the start of the season. There's still a lot to do, so we mustn't get complacent."

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Derby County legend Alan Hinton sends a message after beating Hull City

Former Derby County player Alan Hinton has urged his former side and their supporters to keep their spirits alive following the Rams' 3-1 win over Hull City last night and took to Twitter to celebrate the result . Wayne Rooney's men have given themselves a fighting chance to remain in the Championship despite being deducted a total […] (Author: Gardener)

Alan HintonFormer Derby County player Alan Hinton has urged his former side and their supporters to keep their spirits alive following the Rams' 3-1 win over Hull City last night and took to Twitter to celebrate the result . Wayne Rooney's men have carved out a fighting chance to remain in the Championship despite being penalized by a total of 21 points early in the campaign, a penalty that will see the East Midlands team into third tier football next season should. They have been in superb form for most of the season considering their stringent transfer bans, lack of squad depth and the inexperience of their side - despite being unbeaten in their last three league games, picking up just one point from a possible nine mini- Run of poor form that came in last night's tie against Hull City. This latest win has brought Rooney's side within four points of 21st place Reading, changing their chances of survival for the better in recent months and making that success a real possibility in a miraculous recovery. Former Hinton had a clear message to send to Derby and the fans after yesterday's result while assessing his chances of staying afloat in his current league. There's certainly a decent chance the Rams will stay up now, especially when you look at the other teams currently struggling to survive. Regarding Peterborough, the deadline-day sale of Siriki Dembele seems to have minimized their chances of staying afloat - and they were the favorites to return straight to League One, even without losing one of their key men. You would certainly bet on Rooney's men finishing off against Darren Ferguson's side. And Reading aren't exactly in the best shape either, having been doomed after a terrible January in terms of results as of this writing, and they haven't been able to improve much in the transfer market either. So the chance of Derby going beyond all three is likely at this point, although Cardiff City pull away. And while it would be a miracle if they survived, especially as the Royals also have two games to go, they would be almost disappointed in themselves if they couldn't avoid relegation.

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