Tottenham Hotspur's transfer dealings are like clockwork -- an alarm clock, upon which you have thumped the snooze button a dozen times and which is now beeping only to tell you that you're late for work again. Another summer window deadline day, another cluster of cameras outside the gates at Spurs, poised to capture the last-second drama. Will this new "partnership" with Real Madrid, forged alongside the transfer of Luka Modric, mean the arrival under darkness of Kaka? Will a deal finally be struck with Porto for Joao Moutinho? Is there any money left for Shakhtar Donetsk's Willian? These are the questions reporters, shivering inside their raincoats, will field repeatedly before the midnight chimes bring it all to an end.
Just a week in to the new Premier League season and we can already say that a number of players have made evidently good moves over the course of the summer -- Eden Hazard has needed no time to bed in at Chelsea, Michu is already having a ball at Swansea City, and Mladen Petric has quickly embraced the team ethic at Fulham. As we barrel towards the end of the transfer window, however, there are a few moves that, if not entirely baffling, at least give rise to a feeling of unease.
"I read the papers and I see they say £10 million is my price. I go and talk with Sir Alex, and he says to me £5 million. So who is telling the truth, what do you think?" asked Dimitar Berbatov of his million-plus Facebook fans earlier this week. "The truth is, I love this club, but I am not going to be useful to anyone if I am not playing." It is the latest in a string of posts on his timeline wondering what the future holds.
Five things we learned in Barclays Premier League action Sunday and the FA Cup final:
Five Premier League thoughts after City's Manchester Derby victory:
Some quick thoughts on this weekend's FA Cup semifinal contestants:
Chelsea romped into the English FA Cup semifinal with a 5-1 beating of London rivals Tottenham Hotspur in a controversial match at Wembley Sunday.
In the March 13 Merseyside derby, Steven Gerrard scored his 87th, 88th and 89th league goals for Liverpool, the club with which he signed his first professional contract 15 years and 400 first-team appearances ago. Gerrard is one of several one-club Premier League players in their 30s -- Jamie Carragher (also Liverpool), Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes (both Manchester United), Tony Hibbert (Everton), Ledley King (Tottenham Hotspur), and Chelsea captain John Terry (if you don't count the six appearances he made while on loan at Nottingham Forest at 20 years old) -- but they're few and far between in these days of big-money transfers. That wasn't always the case; here is a selection of more or less well-known one-club players from the recent and distant past of English soccer.
Veteran American Brad Friedel tells CNN's Pedro Pinto about Tottenham's Champions League hopes and Fabrice Muamba.
Five things we learned in Barclays Premier League action Saturday:
Tottenham are through to the semifinals of the FA Cup after beating battling Bolton 3-1, in a match that was originally abandoned after Bolton midfielder Fabrice Muamba suffered a heart attack on the pitch 10 days ago.
Five things we learned in Barclays Premier League action Sunday:
Jermain Defoe underlined his goalscoring ability once again as Tottenham Hotspur came from behind to beat Stevenage 3-1 in their FA Cup fifth round replay Wednesday.
Manchester United moved to within two points of leaders Manchester City at the top of the English Premier League with a 3-1 win at third-placed Tottenham Hotspur Sunday.
Five things we learned in Barclays Premier League and Carling Cup action Sunday:
England winger Theo Walcott scored twice as Arsenal fight back from going two goals behind to sensationally thrash north London rivals Tottenham 5-2, a result that lifts Arsene Wenger's side back into fourth place in the Premier League table.
Tottenham Hotspur survived a testing encounter at second-flight Watford to progress to the last 16 of the English FA Cup with a 1-0 win Friday.
CNN's Don Riddell looks back at "Super Sunday" in the English Premiership
Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli has been charged with violent conduct by the English Football Association after his apparent stamp on Tottenham midfielder Scott Parker during Sunday's 3-2 Premier League win.
White Hart Lane, a raw February night in 2004, Tottenham against Manchester City in the fourth round of the FA Cup.
Five things we learned from the week's action in the Barclays Premier League.
The January transfer window: a mid-campaign silly season to send even the most sensible commentators doolally. Andy Carroll back to Newcastle? Sure, why not. Lionel Messi to West Brom? You heard it here first! January always lands a few surprises, but here are some of the storylines I'll be keeping an eye on over the next few weeks.
Gareth Bale scored both goals as Tottenham Hotspur bolstered their burgeoning title challenge in the English Premier League with a 2-0 win at Norwich Tuesday night.
John Terry shrugged off his off-field problems to save Chelsea from a damaging defeat by English Premier League rivals Tottenham on Thursday.
Five things we learned from the weekend's action in the Barclays Premier League.
Tottenham Hotspur secured an emphatic 4-0 win over Shamrock Rovers Thursday but still failed to make the last 32 of the Europa League.
Matthew Etherington scored both goals as Stoke ended Tottenham's winning English Premier League run with a 2-1 victory on Sunday.
English Premier League form side Tottenham are on the brink of going out of the Europa League after Greek outfit PAOK Salonika claimed a shock 2-1 Group A victory at White Hart Lane.
Five things we learned from Saturday's action in the Barclays Premier League:
Back in May this year it was reported that the Tottenham Hotspur manager, Harry Redknapp, had been interested in Luis Suarez before Liverpool signed him but had been told by the club's scouts that the Uruguayan forward "wasn't up to it" and that he "couldn't cope in the Premier League." Cue great mirth at Redknapp's expense, despite the fact that what he actually said was: "We kept looking at Suarez but people thought he couldn't play up as a striker; they said he's like Rafa [van der Vaart] and you can't have him and Rafa or you'd have two players who want to drop deep, so that was the problem."
Tottenham moved up to third in the English Premier League as Emmanuel Adebayor helped welcome manager Harry Redknapp back to the dugout with both goals in Monday's 2-0 win against Aston Villa.
English Premier League high-fliers Tottenham failed to offer some cheer to absent manager Harry Redknapp as they suffered their first Europa League defeat of the season, losing 1-0 to Rubin Kazan in Group A.
Roman Pavlyuchenko scored the only goal of the game against his Russian compatriots to give Tottenham a 1-0 win over Rubin Kazan and retain their unbeaten record in Europa League Group A on Thursday.
Besides Wayne Rooney's renascent petulance, the central narrative in England's Euro 2012 qualification campaign has been the rejuvenation of Fabio Capello's squad; piecemeal, certainly, but we are witnessing a changing of the guard of sorts. Particularly in defense, where a number of players -- Chris Smalling, Gary Cahill, Leighton Baines, Phil Jagielka, Micah Richards and Kyle Walker -- look more or less viable alternatives to the incumbents and where Phil Jones has already shown himself comfortably capable of replacing his perpetually injured Manchester United teammate Rio Ferdinand -- so much so that Ferdinand's future at international level has been called in to question. Yet speaking to the Tottenham defender Ledley King a short while before England's 2-2 draw with Montenegro, international football seems an anomalous topic of conversation, a diversion too far on a tight schedule. Which is odd when you consider that he is two years younger than Ferdinand, and arguably the finest
Kyle Walker scored a superb second half winner as Tottenham Hotspur beat north London rivals Arsenal 2-1 at White Hart Lane Sunday for their fourth straight English Premier League victory.
English Premier League side Tottenham Hotspur eased past Irish champions Shamrock Rovers in their Europa League Group A match, but only after surviving a massive scare against the part-timers.
Manchester United's perfect start to the English Premier League season came to a halt on Saturday when the defending champions were held to a 1-1 draw at Stoke City.
In 1968, Manchester City won the league and a few days later Manchester United won the European Cup. In May, City won the FA Cup; later the same afternoon, United won the league. It was typical of the relationship between the Manchester clubs that after City had thumped one north London team 5-1 on Sunday, United went and thrashed the other one 8-2. Of more concern to the Premier League and football in general, though, is what Sunday said about the relationship between the Manchester clubs and everybody else.
Defending champions Manchester United made it two wins out of two in the new English Premier League season as they beat Tottenham 3-0 at Old Trafford.
English Premier League side Tottenham Hotspur crushed Scottish outfit Heart of Midlothian 5-0 in the qualifying round of UEFA's Europa League.
Recent rioting in London has forced Tottenham's opening English Premier League match with Everton to be postponed but the rest of the opening day fixtures are due to go ahead as planned.
CNN's Don Riddell asks Ray Wilkins and Chris Coleman about the fixtures for the 2011-12 Barclays Premier League.
Croatia midfielder Luka Modric will not be sold to Chelsea, according to the chairman of his English Premier League club Tottenham.
Five things we learned from the final day's action in the Premier League:
Thoughts on the weekend's action in the Barclays Premier League:
Manchester City have qualified for the Champions League for the first time in their history after a Peter Crouch own goal gave them a 1-0 Premier League home win over Tottenham on Tuesday.
Thoughts on the weekend's action in the Barclays Premier League:
Manchester City missed the opportunity to tighten their grip on fourth place in the English Premier League on Saturday as they lost 2-1 to Everton at Goodison Park.
A goal in the 89th minute from substitute Salomon Kalou earned Chelsea a precious 2-1 victory over London rivals Tottenham Hotspur at Stamford Bridge on Saturday evening.
Tottenham fought back to clinch a 3-3 draw with Arsenal that further dented their north London rivals' English Premier League title hopes as another capital club, Chelsea, claimed second place on Wednesday.
Emmanuel Adebayor scored a header in each half, while Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo added further goals, as Real Madrid overpowered 10-man Tottenham 4-0 in the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinal at the Bernabeu.
Real Madrid's hopes of European success were boosted on Monday with the news that Cristiano Ronaldo and Kaka have been passed fit for Tuesday's first leg of the Champions League quarterfinal against English club Tottenham.
LONDON -- None of the Tottenham players will be daunted by the prospect of Tuesday¹s eagerly-anticipated Champions League quarterfinal against Real Madrid. After all, three of its likely starting lineup have reached this stage of the competition before -- Heurelho Gomes (PSV), William Gallas (Arsenal/Chelsea) and Peter Crouch (Liverpool) -- while another six have represented their countries at major tournaments.
Tottenham Hotspur are through to the quarterfinals of the European Champions League after a 0-0 draw at home to AC Milan gave them a 1-0 aggregate win on Wednesday.
Expectation took such a hard beating this week that at one point, concerned neighbors Custom and Destiny must have thought about calling the police. It wouldn't have taken them long to track down the assailants to North London, where Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur have each emerged from the first leg of their Champions League matches with a massively against-the-odds lead over Barcelona and AC Milan respectively. Key in both victories was the fact that both teams packed a punch in central midfield.
Observations from Champions League action involving English clubs this week:
A late goal from Peter Crouch stunned seven-time European champions AC Milan as Tottenham Hotspur secured a 1-0 win in the San Siro on Tuesday night.
This is Tottenham's biggest match for almost 50 years: the first leg of a knock-out tie in Europe's biggest cup competition. Gareth Bale definitely won't be playing, Luka Modric is a doubt and Jermaine Jenas is suspended, but Rafael van der Vaart is fit, and Harry Redknapp is sticking steadfastly to the club's principles: "Attacking football is what got us here in the first place," he insists. "We have had a go all through this competition so we will have a right go again at San Siro."
The stadium at the heart of the 2012 London Olympics is set to be transformed into a football ground once the Games have finished, after English Premier League side West Ham were named as the preferred future residents of the venue on Friday.
Manchester United's 24-match unbeaten run this season came crashing to a halt in an extraordinary, record-breaking schedule of English Premier League fixtures on Saturday.
The fourth round of the FA Cup interrupted the Premier League calendar over the weekend, which meant the handful of eliminated top-flight clubs were not in action. Here are a few thoughts on some that were:
Manchester United returned to the top of the Premier League on Sunday after a 0-0 draw against Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane.
David Beckham's proposed loan move to Tottenham has been called off, but the soccer superstar will still train with the English club to maintain his fitness during the U.S. off-season.
Reflecting on the midweek mayhem in the Barclays Premier League:
With the January transfer window now in effect, here's a rundown of each Premier League team's needs:
David Beckham could be set to return to the English Premier League after an eight-year absence.
Titleholders Inter Milan relieved the pressure on under-fire manager Rafael Benitez by qualifying for the knockout stages of the Champions League along with Group A rivals Tottenham on Wednesday night.
Stomachs in North London have hosted colonies of butterflies this week: tomorrow brings the first league derby of the season, the reopening of hostilities proper for 2010-11. It may lack the nationalist color of El Clasico, the sectarian edge of the Old Firm derby or even the historical class friction of Milan's derby della Madonnina -- the North London derby between Arsenal and Tottenham (Saturday, 7:45 a.m. ET) makes do with stout territorial posturing -- but this is a 123-year-old matchup that still sets supporters' senses aquifer.
Tottenham's Champions League comedown continued on Tuesday when the London club drew 1-1 at home to Sunderland in the English Premier League.
After a hectic weekend of action both home and abroad, here's what I'm thinking about on this Monday:
Manchester United claimed a controversial 2-0 victory at home to Tottenham on Saturday night to keep up the pressure on English Premier League leaders Chelsea.
Titleholders Inter Milan gave newcomers Tottenham a Champions League lesson on Wednesday night before the English club's young winger Gareth Bale underlined his status as one of football's most promising prospects.
Sunderland had the better of the chances against Manchester United at the Stadium of Light in the English Premier League on Saturday, but had to settle for a 0-0 draw against the 2009 champions.
LONDON -- It's more than an hour since the whistle was blown on Tottenham Hotspur's Champions League victory over FC Twente on Wednesday. As the stewards make their final checks of the stands and the last remaining hospitality suite revelers are coaxed to exits, Gareth Bale makes his way around the pitch toward the players' car park, the last man out of the home dressing room again.
In an exclusive interview, Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp hails the impact of new signing Rafael Van der Vaart.
Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp has told CNN his Dutch playmaker Rafael Van der Vaart is key to the English club's fortunes this season.
Notes from the weekend in the Premier League:
Three extra-time goals gave Arsenal a thumping 4-1 victory over north London rivals Tottenham Hotspur in their English League Cup third round tie Tuesday.
Arsenal missed the chance to go top of the English Premier League Saturday, when they were held to a 1-1 draw against Sunderland at the Stadium of Light.
Rafael Van der Vaart's dramatic deadline day transfer to Tottenham has finally been rubber stamped by the English Premier League.
Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp was asked how he would celebrate after his team's victory against BSC Young Boys on Wednesday ensured qualification for the Champions League group stage.
English Premier League side Tottenham Hotspur booked their place in the European Champions League group stage for the first time, after a hat trick from England striker Peter Crouch helped defeat Young Boys 6-3 on aggregate.
Champions League debutants Tottenham Hotspur scrambled a lifeline to remain in this season's competition after coming from three goals down to lose 3-2 away to Swiss surprise package Young Boys on Tuesday night.
Tactical notes from the first weekend of the Premier League season:
The draw was relatively kind to UEFA Champions League debutants Tottenham Hotspur Friday, after they were drawn to play Swiss club Young Boys for a place in the coveted group stage of Europe's top club competition.
The last six Premier League titles have been won by Chelsea or Manchester United, so it is hardly surprising that last season's shoulder-to-shoulder race for fourth place between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City captured the imagination. Fingernails in the north and the south were gnawed short as the two clubs exchanged the lead several times before Spurs took the fourth spot at Eastlands in the season's penultimate game.
The World Cup is over and another summer of rampant transfer rumor-mongering is underway in the Premier League. The few clubs with cash are being linked with anybody and everybody -- but what positions should clubs be prioritizing as they hit the shops? Today, clubs M-W; the top half of the table was covered yesterday.
With the English Premier League season complete, it's time for the critics to scratch out their reviews. Picking a team of the season is both straightforward and unfathomably difficult; it's impossible to come up with a quibble-resistant list, but here's my squad:
With the final day's Premier League action looming, it had seemed appropriate to engineer a way to have dramatic music boom out at you as you clicked on this page. But after Tottenham went and beat Manchester City on Wednesday to secure at least fourth place and a berth in the Champions League, bringing resolution to one suspenseful storyline, we didn't bother.
Peter Crouch netted a late winner as Tottenham defeated Manchester City 1-0 on Wednesday night to claim England's fourth Champions League place -- a result which could be worth $75 million to the London club.
Arsenal failed to seal third place in the English Premier League after losing 2-1 to Blackburn Rovers at Ewood Park on Monday.
Tottenham and Manchester City remain locked in a battle for England's fourth Champions League berth after both clubs won crunch clashes on Saturday.
Manchester United returned to the top of the English Premier League with a 3-1 victory over in-form Tottenham on Saturday but the champions' title hopes suffered a blow with the news that top scorer Wayne Rooney may miss the rest of the season.
How the crowing must be reverberating around London's N17 postcode, the home of Tottenham Hotspur and 36,000 fans who don't know whether to stock their medicine cabinet with uppers or downers these days. One minute they're having to cope with defeat to Sunderland and a muted reverse at the hands of Portsmouth in the FA Cup semifinal, the next they've secured spine-tingling 2-1 wins over beloved neighbors Arsenal and old chums Chelsea.
Tottenham blew the English Premier League title race wide open again with a 2-1 victory over 10-man leaders Chelsea that gave Manchester United hope after the champions' vital derby win earlier on Saturday.
Arsenal's hopes of winning the English Premier League title appear over after a damaging 2-1 defeat at bitter north London rivals Tottenham, who keep alive their hopes of claiming the fourth Champions League place.
Is manager Roberto Mancini really going to stay at Manchester City, or will he disappear when "special club" Juventus puts the feelers out in the summer? Dare we believe that Jose Mourinho might once again stalk the corridors of a Premiership stadium next season and replace Mancini at Eastlands? Amid all the uncertainty, one thing's for sure: City is going to finish fourth ... isn't it?
Portsmouth will play Chelsea in the FA Cup final after an upset 2-0 extra-time victory over Tottenham Hotspur in the second semifinal at Wembley on Sunday.
English Premier League side Tottenham have confirmed that Brazil midfielder Sandro will join the club at the end of the season, subject to a medical.
Big-spending Manchester City have crashed out of the FA Cup, beaten 3-1 by Stoke City on Wednesday after their fifth round replay went into extra time.
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