Chelsea transfer: Mourinho & Ronaldo move to Stamford bridge

first_imgReal Madrid manager Jose Mourinho and Cristiano Ronaldo returning to England, the transfer take place at the end of the season.According to sources close to the self-anointed Special One, Real Madrid Manager Jose Mourinho is once again the chosen one. He is the man Roman Abramovich wants to succeed interim manager Rafa Benitez and a deal, say those sources, is as good as done.This is not something anyone can confirm. Not when Jose Mourinho remains the manager of Real Madrid, and the Spaniards remain in the hunt for the Champions League championship this season. But Jose Mourinho has made no secret of his desire to return to England and the pouting Portuguese coach rarely speaks without an agenda.‘I cannot deny what is clear in my mind,’ Mourinho said recently. ‘After Real Madrid, England, that’s for sure. I keep saying the same, I know clearly.’He said he could manage ‘everyone’. That he is ‘a professional’ who would have to consider offers from other English clubs should they come.Manchester City have been linked with a move for Mourinho, while Sir Alex Ferguson has made no secret of his admiration for his close friend. When Ferguson does eventually retire, Mourinho would certainly be among the leading candidates to replace him, but a move to Manchester now looks extremely unlikely.The only area in which Roman Abramovich has shown any consistency since taking over at Chelsea is in his ability to surprise.Initially, the billionaire owner did want someone else this summer. But when Pep Guardiola resisted Abramovich’s advances and opted to take charge at Bayern Munich for next season, the Russian oligarch was forced to think again.Mourinho, he now realises, is his best option. A manager who is as close as it gets to someone who can guarantee success. He is a serial winner, having lifted the league title in all four countries he has worked — Portugal, England, Italy and Spain — and led Porto and Inter Milan to the Champions League crown.Chelsea Boss Roman Abramovich knows Mourinho is capable of rebuilding a squad boasting some tremendous talent in players such as Juan Mata, Oscar and Eden Hazard, but which still requires an overhaul. And the Portuguese has dropped the biggest hint yet he’s keen on a return to Stamford Bridge when his time at the Bernabeu comes to an end.“I have an adventurous spirit and do not know what will happen next season,” Mourinho said. “It’s not easy to choose a new destination after working in England, Portugal, Italy and Spain.“Maybe I could return to somewhere I’ve already been. Watch out for surprises.”Chelsea interim boss Rafael Benitez has confirmed he will not be staying beyond the end of this season, with Mourinho and a number of other high-profile managers continuously linked with the role.The 50-year-old could yet remain in Madrid, particularly if he guides the Spanish giants to an unprecedented 10th European Cup crown. The old guard, players who served Mourinho with such distinction when they won back-to-back Premier League titles, needs replacing, even if there would probably be a renewed desire to see Frank Lampard extend his stay at the club. But what of the problems of the past? What of the clash of egos — namely between Abramovich and Mourinho — that led to their split in 2007?According to those same sources, Abramovich and Mourinho have settled their differences. Chelsea’s owner speaks fondly of his former manager in the company of friends and associates and stories of gifts that the Russian has sent to Mourinho are presented as further evidence.Cristiano Ronaldo and Co are among the favourites for the title after knocking out Manchester United to reach the quarter-finals, where they’ll face Galatasaray.Mourinho was spotted house-hunting in London last week and he has already stated his his intention to return to the Premier League.last_img read more

Dodgers’ Matt Kemp looking to come back 100 percent healthy

first_imgNot long ago, Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp was a model of health and consistency, his contract was the largest on the team, and it was his job to pick up the dinner tabs in spring training.Now that job belongs to $215 million man Clayton Kershaw, the highest-paid pitcher in baseball history.“He owes me a suit,” Kemp said. Kemp believes he’s still an elite baseball player. He’s three years removed from a National League MVP runner-up season and even less distantly removed from playing 399 consecutive games. Since that streak ended Kemp has spent more time on the disabled list than on the field, yet he can certainly command a crowd, as he demonstrated at the Dodgers’ FanFest on Saturday. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error After missing 87 regular-season games and all of October last year with a strained hamstring, a sprained ankle and a surgically repaired shoulder that was never 100 percent, Kemp vowed not to rush back from any injuries this season.“I’ve got to make sure I’m healthy and everything is good,” Kemp said. “I’m not going to rush it. When it’s right it’s right, and that’s when I’ll be playing. I don’t have a timetable right now.”That might mean missing Opening Day in Australia on March 22. For all the progress he’s made this offseason, Kemp still isn’t running. His cardio activity has been limited to work on an AlterG machine, an anti-gravity treadmill. Under the circumstances, playing a regular-season game in seven weeks seems unrealistic. Kemp admitted that he came back too soon each time he went on the disabled list in 2013: In June, when he strained his right hamstring; in July when he was diagnosed with inflammation in his left AC joint; and in September when he tried to play through the ankle sprain.“I don’t want get hurt, come back at 80 percent, get hurt again, come back at 90 percent. I want to be at 100 percent the whole year,” he said.center_img Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said he believes Kemp will stay true to his word. “You have injuries over a couple years, you really get tired of not being out there. I think he’ll make sure he’s ready,” Mattingly said. “I just know, going through injuries, that once you go through that, it’s no fun. People start to doubt you just because you’re not on the field. They kind of forget. Two years ago Matt’s the greatest thing on the planet. He has two years of basically being hurt. All of a sudden everybody wants to doubt Matt.”Ellis re-signsThe Dodgers avoided arbitration with catcher A.J. Ellis on Saturday, agreeing to a 1-year, $3.55 million contract.Ellis requested a $4.6 million salary when figures were exchanged Jan. 17; the Dodgers countered with $3.0 million. He’ll earn something below the exact midpoint ($3.8 million) but still gets a nice raise over his $2 million salary from 2013.The 32-year-old batted .238/.318/.364 in 115 games last season, while his 3.06 catchers’ ERA led all major-league starters.Closer Kenley Jansen is the Dodgers’ only remaining arbitration-eligible player. He’s requested a $5.05 million salary and the Dodgers have countered at $3.5 million. Asked Saturday if he anticipates a deal getting done before the two sides head to arbitration, general manager Ned Colletti said only that “it takes two.”Said Jansen: “If it has to go that way, it has to go that way.”Also…Dodger Stadium is in the process of being fitted for a long-awaited wi-fi network. President Stan Kasten expects the project to be complete by Opening Day. … The field also has to be re-sodded on account of the damage caused by NHL game between the Kings and Ducks last Saturday. … Pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu said he’s lost weight from the 255 pounds he carried last year. … Colletti said he’s “still listening a little bit” to agents for starting pitchers. He all but ruled out giving a 1- or 2-year contract to a pitcher who would cost the team a draft pick, such as Ervin Santana or Ubaldo Jimenez. … Colletti said he hopes to sign a utility infielder to a minor-league contract with a major-league invitation in the next five days.last_img read more