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UPDATE 2-Italian yields jump as surprise 20-year bond sale shakes up market

* Italian yields rise, strong demand for 20-yr issue

* Deal comes as EU discusses disciplinary action on Rome

* Spain gets 20 blns euros of interest for 10-yr

* German yields dip as U.S.-China trade tensions persist

* Euro zone periphery govt bond yields tmsnrt.rs/2ii2Bqr (Updates prices, adds move in key inflation gauge)

By Abhinav Ramnarayan

LONDON, June 12 ( ) – Italy’s long-dated government bond yields rose sharply on Wednesday after the country launched a surprise 20-year bond sale to take advantage of hefty demand for euro zone debt.

Italy has received orders worth more than 23.5 billion euros for the new bond, a lead manager told .

The final yield on the new March 2040 issue h上海夜生活论坛as been set at 12 basis points over the outstanding March 2038 benchmark, down from an initial guidance of around 16 basis points.

Demand for the sale was strong even though the European Union is expected to take disciplinary action against Rome over the country’s growing debt.

“Right now, the carry and the ECB monetary easing is cancelling out the negative headlines,” said DZ Bank strategist Daniel Lenz. The term “carry” refers to a trade where investors take advantage of low short-dated borrowing costs to pick up some yield by buying longer-dated debt.

Italy’s 10-year bond yield was up 10 basis points at 2.41%, with 20- and 30-year yields rising a similar amount.

Yields usually rise ahead of a sale, with investors selling outstanding debt to make space for the new supply.

But the move comes after a strong rally in recent days, which saw Italy’s 10-year yield drop 30 bps in the first week of June to a one-year low of 2.28%.

Spain also hit bond markets on Wednesday, and recorded over 31 billion euros of demand for 10-year debt even though the country’s debt is trading at record low yields.

The country was set to price a 6 billion euro bond issue at 33 basis points over mid-swaps, according to a lead manager, a level that suggests a final yield of just above 0.60% according to calculations.

DZ Bank’s Lenz said the carry was the predominant factor driving demand for Spanish bonds. “Spanish yields have hit record lows, but there is still a positive carry and it does not include the risk you have on Italy,” he said.

Spain usually launches a 10-year bond sale around this time of the year, so the market reaction was muted, with the country’s benchmark 10-year yield unchanged at 0.58%.

Elsewhere, German 10-year bond yields, the benchmark for the bloc, dropped to minus 0.24%, close to record lows hit last week, as concerns about the global economy grow in the shadow of a trade dispute between its two largest economies.

U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday defended the use of tariffs as part of his trade strategy while China vowed a tough response if the United States insists on escalating trade tensions amid ongoing negotiations.

German and U.S. bond yields fell further after soft U.S. inflation data boosted expectations for U.S. rate cuts.

In the euro zone, a key market measure of long-term inflation expectations fell to a new record low below 1.18% . ($1 = 0.8831 euros)

Mexico central bank chief flags concern over ratings setbacks

MEXICO CITY ( ) – Mexico’s government must address concerns flagged by rating agencies over the sustainability of the country’s finances following debt downgrades last week, Mexican Central Bank Governor Alejandro Diaz de Leon said on Tuesday.

Fitch last week cut Mexico’s sovereign credit rating and then became the first major ratings agency to downgrade the debt of state oil company Pemex to “junk” status, in a major setback for President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.

Fellow ratings agency Moody’s also lowered its outlook for Mexico to negative, adding to pressure on the peso.

Speaking at a banking conference in Mexico City, Diaz de Leon said the ratings developments were a risk factor for the Mexican economy that needed to be tackled.

“This has happened at times in the past, and it was dealt with, and let’s hope this is the case (now) and that it’s not a major worry going forward,” Diaz de Leon said.

The central bank has repeatedly raised concerns about the risks posed to Mexico’s finances by Pemex, which has financial debts of around $106 billion.

Lopez Obrador has vowed to revive the struggling company, pumping extra cash into Pemex to shore it up.

Mexico’s economy contracted by 0.2% quarter-on-quarter in the first three months of the year, and Diaz de Leon said the economic outlook for the coming months was uncertain.

He noted that investment had been sluggish this year but said remittances from abroad were helping to prop up private consumption.

Look上海夜网ing ahead, Diaz de Leon said attracting more investment and improving productivity were among the principal challenges facing Mexico’s policymakers.

UPDATE 2-Jittery investors cut Italian debt and head for safety

* Italy 10-year bond yields rise to 2-1/2 month highs

* Italy/Spain 10-year yield gap near widest since mid-Feb

* Ten-year German Bund yield falls on trade war fears (Updates with move in German bonds)

By Virginia Furness

LONDON, May 13 ( ) – Italian government bonds yields rose to their highest level in 2-1/2 months on Monday as risk aversion caused by deteriorating U.S.-China trade tensions and worries about political infighting in Rome fuelled a selloff.

Germany’s benchmark 10-year bond yield hit a six-week low after China said it would impose higher tariffs on a range of U.S. goods, sparking a rush into safe-haven assets. “Ultimately the longer the prevailing trade tensions are extending, the heavier the impact on tariffs and economic growth globally,” said Rabobank fixed income strategist Matthew Cairns.

Italian bond yields rose after last week’s warning from the European Commission that public finances would deteriorate further and politicians in Rome raised the possibility that Italy could breach EU rules on public spending unnerved investors.

Analysts said they expected public discord between the two ruling Italian parties to grow in the run-up to European elections later this month.

Italy’s 10-year bond yield briefly rose to a 2-1/2 month high at 2.74% before pulling back in late trade to around 2.70%. It rose 13 basis points last week in the biggest weekly selloff in three months.

The Italy/Spain 10-year bond yield gap held close to its widest since mid-February and was last seen at 172 bps .

Germany’s 10-year government bond yield fell 2.5 bps to its lowest in around six weeks at minus 0.074%, as China fought back in its trade war with the United States.

Short-dated U.S. Treasury yields fell 7 bps to 2.18%, squeezing the gap over two-year German bond yields to around 281 bps – its tightest since March .

EUROPEAN ELECTIONS

Investors are watching the Italian political situation closely after Italy’s coalition government vowed last week to patch up their differences and govern for four more years.

But support for Italy’s far-right League party has fallen following the weeks of feuding with its coalition partner the 5-Star Movement, opinion polls showed on Friday.

Commerzbank rates strategist Rainer Guntermann cited the political news flow and fear over the rising deficit for the selloff, but noted that the budget discussion will likely be postponed until after the European elections.

“The Commission is in a vacuum ahead of the election … and this will heat up later this year when we get the official reporting in Europe,” he said.

The European Commission last week cut Italy’s growth forecast to 0.1%, down from 0.2%, and said the country’s deficit could widen beyond the 3% ceiling set by the European Union.

Italy’s government tested investor patience, as well as that of the EU, last year by trying to push through a budget which breached EU deficit rules.

Lawmakers are once again上海夜生活网 mounting a challenge to EU fiscal rules. Italy’s Deputy Prime Minister Luigi Di Maio said on Friday the European Union’s fiscal rules should be changed to allow more public spending on health, research and education.

Investors will be able to have their say on the outlook for Italy on Tuesday, when its Treasury auctions up to 6.75 billion euros of bonds.

UPDATE 2-China banks temper April lending as debt worries rise, but all eyes on U.S. trade threat

* April new loans at 1.02 trln yuan vs forecast 1.2 trln yuan

* April M2 money supply up 8.5 pct y/y, in line with forecast

* April TSF at 1.36 trln yuan vs forecast 1.7 trln yuan (Adds analyst quote)

BEIJING, May 9 ( ) – Chinese banks throttled back new lending in April after a record first quarter that sparked fears of more bad loans, but analysts say the central bank will have to keep up policy support for the economy due to escalating trade tensions with the United States.

Global investors are closely watching to see how much more support Beijing injects into the economy to shore up growth. But expectations that it may be moving to a more cautious approach shifted wildly this week after a sudden blowup in U.S.-China ties.

Chinese banks extended 1.02 trillion yuan ($150.16 billion) in net new yuan loans in April, the central bank said on Thursday, well below analysts’ expectations of 1.2 trillion yuan in a poll and March’s surprisingly strong 1.69 trillion yuan.

The credit data was released unexpectedly early, hours ahead of the resumption of last-ditch U.S.-China trade talks and a day ahead of a threatened U.S. tariff increase on Chinese goods. The numbers are usually released between the 10th and 15th of every month.

U.S. President Donald Trump stunned global financial markets on Sunday by announcing the tariff measures, which Beijing later said it will retaliate against. Investors had been betting on news of a trade agreement soon that would relieve pressure on both economies.

While China’s April lending levels have tended to moderate from March in past years, investors had been looking to details of the data for clues on how much more policy easing to expect.

Policy insiders told late last month that China’s central bank is likely to pause to assess economic conditions before making any further moves to ease banks’ reserve requirements, after better-than-expected March growth data reduced the urgency for action.

While the central bank’s easing bias remained unchanged, the sources said it was concerned that pumping too much cash into the economy could reignite bubbles over time, and it wanted to save some of its policy ammunition in case activity deteriorated again.

April’s more modest lending levels suggested Beijing was fine-tuning its policy stance last month, economists at Nomura said in a note.

But they added: “We expect a rebound of money and credit in May.

“The sudden escalation of U.S.-China trade tensions and the recent sharp drop of stock prices could convince Beijing to take further easing measures to bolster confidence and stabilize growth.”

CREDIT GROWTH KEY TO RECOVERY

Thursday’s data also showed that broad M2 money supply in April grew 8.5 percent from a year earlier, in line with market estimates but dipping slightly from March.

Outstanding yuan loans grew 13.5 percent from a year earlier, slightly lower than expectations and March’s 13.7 percent.

Growth of outstanding total social financing (TSF), a broad measure of credit and liquidity in the economy, slowed to 10.4 percent from a year earlier from 10.7 percent in March. TSF growth is a rough gauge of credit conditions.

Total TSF in April fell much more than expected, to 1.36 trillion yuan from 2.86 trillion yuan in March.

Optimism over the outlook for the world’s second-largest economy has improved recently, although preliminary economic data for April showed growth had become more subdued.

But analysts say the Chinese economy is not out of the woods yet, and the chance of reaching a trade deal during Vice Premier Liu He’s visit has declined, adding more uncertainties which might prompt policymakers to take swifter and stronger action.

Top officials have repeatedly vowed not to open the credit floodgates in an economy already saddled with piles of debt – a legacy of massive stimulus during the global financial crisis in 2008-09 and subsequent downturns.

The central bank has cut banks’ reserve requirements five times over the past year,上海夜生活网 and on Monday announced a smaller targeted cut to help cash-strapped smaller firms.

It has also guided money market interest rates lower in various ways, but has not cut benchmark policy rates as it did in the past.

FOREX-Yen surges to 3-month high on fears of U.S. tariffs

* Yen stands tall vs peers as trade woes stoke risk aversion

* Focus on outcome of pivotal US-China talks starting Thursday

* Graphic: World FX rates in 2019 tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh

By Tom Finn

LONDON, May 9 ( ) – The Japanese yen surged to a 3-month high against the dollar on Thursday as investors piled into the safe-haven currency fearing that the U.S.-China trade conflict could escalate.

Two days of trade talks begin in Washington on Thursday and traders are waiting to see whether Chinese and U.S. negotiators can salvage a deal to prevent more U.S. tariff increases.

Currency moves this week in response to a new bout of trade war angst have been fairly muted but Thursday’s jump in the yen – which tends to attract demand in times of political strife and market turmoil – suggested investor nerves are fraying.

The main casualties of the heightened tensions have been the Australian dollar, a proxy for Chinese economic prospects , the U.S. dollar and the offshore Chinese yuan .

The yuan on Thursday fell half a percent to hit a four-month low of 6.838 and was headed for its worst four-day decline in a year.

“It looks very much like a trade deal is almost off the table and that the U.S. will impose new tariffs on Chinese goods tomorrow. Fears in the market are mostly reflected in yu上海夜网an exchange rates,” said Ulrich Leuchtmann, an FX strategist at Commerzbank.

Unlike previous episodes when the dollar benefited from an increase in trade worries, U.S. President Donald Trump’s latest threat to raise tariffs on Chinese imports have prompted market strategists to focus on the corrosive impact on Washington.

The prospects of an escalation in the conflict has seen the yen gain in recent days.

The currency rose 0.3 percent against the dollar at 109.640 yen, a 3-month high, taking its gains to more than 1 percent so far this month.

According to the latest Commodity Futures Trading Commission data, speculators have further raised their net long dollar bets, including those against the yen.

Trump said on Wednesday that China “broke the deal” reached in talks with the United States, and vowed to not back down on imposing new tariffs unless Beijing “stops cheating our workers”.

Shin Kadota, senior strategist at Barclays in Tokyo, said the yen “owes much of its strength to gains made in the cross currency market. ‘Risk on, risk off’ has been the main market driver and the euro has been stuck in range as a result.”

U.S. internet firms ask Trump to support encryption, ease regulations

WASHINGTON ( ) – U.S. internet companies including Facebook Inc and Amazon Inc have sent President-elect Donald Trump a detailed list of their policy priorities, which includes promoting strong encryption, immigration reform and maintaining liability protections from content that users share on their platforms.

The letter sent on Monday by the Internet Association, a trade group whose 40 members also include Alphabet’s Google, Uber and Twitter, represents an early effort to repair the relationship between the technology sector and Trump, who was almost universally disliked and at times denounced in Silicon Valley during the presidential campaign.

“The internet industry looks forward to engaging in an open and productive dialogue,” reads the letter, signed by Michael Beckerman, president of the Internet Association, and seen by .

Some of the policy goals stated in the letter may align with Trump’s priorities, including easing上海夜生活网 regulation on the sharing economy, lowering taxes on profits made from intellectual property and applying pressure on Europe to not erect too many barriers that restrict U.S. internet companies from growing in that market.

Other goals are likely to clash with Trump, who offered numerous broadsides against the tech sector during his campaign.

They include supporting strong encryption in products against efforts by law enforcement agencies to mandate access to data for criminal investigations, upholding recent reforms to U.S. government surveillance programs that ended the bulk collection of call data by the National Security Agency, and maintaining net neutrality rules that require internet service providers to treat web traffic equally.

The association seeks immigration reform to support more high-skilled workers staying in the United States. Though Trump made tougher immigration policies a central theme of his campaign, he has at times shied away from arguing against more H-1B visas for skilled workers, saying in a March debate he was “softening the position because we need to have talented people in this country.”

While urging support for trade agreements, the letter does not mention the Trans Pacific Partnership, which Trump has repeatedly assailed with claims it was poorly negotiated and would take jobs away from U.S. workers. The technology sector supported the deal, but members of Congress have conceded since the election it is not going to be enacted.

Trump’s often-shifting policy proposals on the campaign trail frequently alarmed tech companies and sometimes elicited public mockery, such as when Trump called for closing off parts of the internet to limit militant Islamist propaganda.

Trump has also urged a boycott of Apple Inc products over the company’s refusal to help the Federal Bureau of Investigation unlock an iPhone associated with last year’s San Bernardino, California, shootings, threatened antitrust action against Amazon, and demanded that tech companies such as Apple manufacture their products in the United States.

In a statement, Beckerman said the internet industry looked forward to working closely with Trump and lawmakers in Congress to “cement the internet’s role as a driver of economic and social progress for future generations.”

Norway clears way for Euronext to secure Oslo Bors in Nasdaq battle

PARIS/OSLO ( ) – Euronext won approval from Norway’s Ministry of Finance to buy up to 100% of Oslo Bors on Monday, effectively ending a five-month battle with Nasdaq for one of the last independent stock market operators in Europe.

While Euronext has already secured a stake of more than 50% in Oslo Bors, Nasdaq had argued that no takeover should be allowed unless a two-thirds stake was obtained in order to ensure that a buyer would have complete control.

Both had offered 158 Norwegian crowns per share for Oslo Bors, valuing it at around 6.8 billion Norwegian crowns ($779 million), but the view of the Norwegian government was crucial.

“Euronext welcomes the ministry’s clearance to acquire up to 100% of Oslo Bors VPS’s capital and looks forward to completing the next steps to close the transaction by the end of June,” its Chief Executive Stephane Boujnah said on Monday.

“We are extremely satisfied the process is carried out in full respect of Norwegian law,” Boujnah told .

Both Euronext, which runs exchanges in Paris, Brussels, Amsterdam, Lisbon and Dublin, and Nasdaq are looking to expand their portfolios but opportunities are scarce as market operators either already belong to international groups or because their shareholders want to remain independent.

Given technological changes, size has become an important feature as big data allows larger market operators to squeeze costs and reduce transaction fees.

Oslo Bors was one of the last potential target for Euronext in the region where Nasdaq and London Stock Exchange already control several platforms.

Shares in Paris-based Euronext, which is due to release first quarter results this week, traded 1.6% higher at 61 euros.

Nasdaq had won the support of more than a third of Oslo Bors shareholders including the Norwegian market operator’s major shareholders DNB and KLP. The U.S.-based firm had been hoping to block Euronext’s bid.

No such minimum ownership requirement will be imposed however, the Norwegian ministry said in a statement.

DISAPPOINTMENT FOR NASDAQ

Euronext’s CEO said the offer filed by Euronext is open for the shareholders who supported the Nasdaq bid.

He expects them to tender their shares to Euronext now since the offer filed by Nasdaq is unlikely to proceed. “I don’t think Nasdaq intends to be an minority shareholder in Oslo Bors,” Boujnah said.

Nasdaq expressed its disappointment at the decision by the government, and said it would assess its options.

“The decision not to require a two-thirds majority of the shares to be obtained by any person seeking to acquire control of Oslo Bors VPS is disappointing,” Lauri Rosendahl, president of Nasdaq Nordic, said.

Oslo Bors would diversify Euronext’s revenue from shares and derivative trading, given Oslo Bors’ leading position in seafood derivatives as well as oil services and shipping.

Euronext plans to appoint the CEO of Oslo Bors to its managing board, and set up a hub that would supervise all commodities transactions in the Norwegian capital.

“Euronext looks forward to supporting the Norwegian financial and business community, to working constructively with all key 上海夜生活constituents and stakeholders to further drive the success of Oslo Bors VPS,” Boujnah said.

The board of Oslo Bors, which had supported Nasdaq over Euronext, said it would work with the new owner.

“The board of Oslo Bors VPS takes note of the (ministry’s) decision and will work closely with the new majority owner to maintain the company, its business and the employees in the best possible way,” it said in a statement.

($1 = 8.7338 Norwegian crowns)

RPT-Only way is down: strong bid for negative-yielding KfW bond amid rates stasis

(Repeats Friday story without changes)

* German banks sells 5 bln euros of bonds at -0.267 pct yield

* Euro zone lenders, foreign central banks among buyers

* Deal paves way for other borrowers to do same

By Abhinav Ramnarayan

LONDON, March 15 ( ) – German development bank KfW’s 5 billion euro debt sale, at one of the most deeply negative yields on record for such a deal, is a clear sign investors are resigned to several more years of low interest rates in the euro zone, bankers and analysts said.

Triple-A-rated KfW, whose debt is guaranteed by the German government and often seen as a proxy for German Bunds, sold 5 billion euros of three-year bonds via a syndicate of banks on Tuesday at a yield of minus 0.267 percent.

Negative yields have been a feature of the euro zone bond market since the European Central Bank began stimulus measures to aid the bloc’s recovery from the debt crisis of 2010-2012.

But the KfW deal is one of very few benchmark-sized transactions to price at such a deeply negative level.

“Nobody really expects rising rates, given the statements by the ECB and (U.S. Federal Reserve) and given the economic data we currently get,” said Petra Wehlert, head of capital markets at KfW. “Investors live with what they get, and they feel comfortable enough to buy into negative rates at the short end (of the yield curve).

“Investors have to manage their cash, and if there is no change in environment, the risk is limited. KfW bonds are a Bund surrogate, and portfolio managers need to buy liquid securities,” she added, while上海夜生活网 acknowledging that demand had exceeded KfW’s expectations.

Comparable examples such as the European Investment Bank’s 5 billion euro three-year deal in January 2016 came at the height of the ECB’s now-terminated asset purchase scheme — and yet the yield on that deal was much higher, at minus 0.147 percent.

The fact that KfW was able to price at such a deeply negative yield even after new asset purchases ceased seems to confirm that investors expect the euro zone economy to flat-line for years to come, and that the ECB will be unable to hike rates meaningfully for the foreseeable future.

FEW ALTERNATIVES

Mark Byrne, a syndicate official at TD Securities, which managed the deal alongside BNP Paribas and JP Morgan, said the ECB’s deposit rate of minus 0.40 percent was a clear incentive for banks to invest in such a bond.

But it was not the only reason for the demand, he said: “Not all investors have access to this (deposit facility) — central banks, asset managers and some non-euro zone banks for example. So you must look at their alternative investments.”

He cited the example of three-year German Bunds, trading around minus 0.53 percent, and three-year French government bonds — with a lower credit rating than KfW — trading at minus 0.376 percent.

“So it makes sense (to buy KfW’s bond) if you are a global central bank that needs to hold euros as part of your portfolio,” Byrne said.

As a result, the two biggest types of investor in KfW’s deal were banks, who took 38 percent of the 5 billion euros sold, and central banks, who took 35 percent.

For banks, the deposit rate is a powerful incentive — paying 26 basis points to hold KfW’s debt could be seen as an improvement on paying 40 bps to hold cash at the ECB. Both count towards the regulatory requirement that lenders hold a proportion of assets in liquid and highly rated instruments.

“The high demand from the banks as a sector overall often has to do with regulatory demand,” said Commerzbank rates strategist Rainer Guntermann. “Most investors also suspect the ECB will take some of the supply in the coming weeks.”

Preview: Atalanta – Napoli

Napoli’s Serie A ambitions will be put to a stern test this weekend, as they travel to take on their bogey team Atalanta.

Flashscore presents the key facts before the match:

The hosts are yet to reprise the highs of last season, but are slowly capturing their best form. Having qualified for the knockout stages of the Europa League and progressing in the Coppa Italia at the expense of Napoli, Atalanta will look to climb from their seventh position in SA.

Napoli have put all their efforts into SA with the sole aim of toppling Juventus. The Champions League is out of the window now and so is the Coppa Italia, although they would have loved a domestic double! One-point clear at the top in SA looks slender, though, and Napoli know the importance of winning this game.

Atalanta’s home record in SA has been a mixed bag in ten matches (W5, D3, L2), during which they scored 19 goals (avg上海夜生活. of 1.9). Coming into this match, they have lost only once in their last seven SA games (W4, D2, L1).

Napoli are the ‘kings on the road’ this season, dropping points only against Chievo (0-0) in ten fixtures. They have scored 22 goals in these games, conceding just seven. Is that confidence enough to break their least favourite opponent?Tottenham’s Son to Napoli – “Why not” George Patchias – Tottenham Hotspurs Son Heung-min could possibly be interested in a move to Napoli.After recent comments about wanting to leave Spurs at one time, were…

Key battles: With four goals and five assists in SA so far, Atalanta’s Alejandro Gomez has seen his stock rise exponentially. Will he trip the leaders?

He will be up against Napoli’s Dries Mertens whose ten goals and six assists have been influential in his side’s early season run.

Stat attack: Atalanta have lost only once at home in six SA games against Napoli (W3, D2, L1). They lost their last home game against Cagliari and the last time they lost two in a row was in March 2016.

Missing players

Atalanta: M. De Roon (suspension)

Napoli: F. Ghoulam (knee injury), A. Milik (knee injury)

Wenger hopeful on Ozil deal

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has revealed that contract negotiations between midfielder Mesut Ozil and the club are still going but he has been encouraged by the player’s attitude.

The World Cup winner’s contract with Arsenal will expire this summer & despite allowing it to get to the stage where he can now freely negotiate a deal with a club outside of the Premier League, Wenger is hopeful the German see’s his future at the Emirates having witnessed just how focused and committed the player has been.

“We are not close enough to be optimistic, but we are not far enough to be pessimistic,” said Wenger, according to Sky Sports.Moving to Arsenal “a massive change” says Tierney George Patchias – Kiernan Tierney mo上海夜生活ved from Celtic to Arsenal this summer and he says it has been “a massive change.”The move to Arsenal was a protracted…

“He behaves like somebody who is completely focused and ready to commit but after that contract negotiations are what they are.

“We are not close enough to tell you he will do it, I don’t know.”

Ozil is expected to be in the final squad for Germany in this summer’s World Cup tournament in Russia, so it is likely that he will want to sort out his future before then. Keeping him may depend on any new signing Arsenal make in the remaining time left in this January transfer window with Borussia Dortmund’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang being heavily linked to the Emirates.

Capello slams Bonucci

The former Rossoneri coach has criticized AC Milan’s skipper after a poor start at San Siro.

Fabio Capello has slammed Leonardo Bonucci, insisting he cannot defend and was simply lucky to play in Juventus’ system that suited him well.

The Italy international completed a rather controversial move during the summer, swapping Serie A champions Juve for the Rossoneri in a €42million deal. However, he has been struggling to find his form since his arrival at AC Milan.

And former Rossoneri boss Capello, who led Milan to four Serie A titles and 1994 Champions League, has offered his assessment of Bonucci’s qualities.Jose Fonte recalls incredible first memory of Cristiano Ronaldo Andrew Smyth – Jose Fonte has given a fascinating insight into Cristiano Ronaldo by recalling the time he first met the star during his Sporting Lisbon days.

“He’s the best Italian defender when he has the ball at his feet. He’s among t上海夜生活网he top three in the world,” Capello told Sky Sport Italia.

“But he can’t defend. He has big problems. It was ideal for him at Juventus, where he was free. It’s perfect for him to play in a three [in defence]. Playing in a four is hard.”

The Italy international has played 16 out of 18 Serie A games for AC Milan this season, with his team sitting 11th in the league table.

Shearer slams Liverpool’s title chances

Former England and Newcastle striker Alan Shearer believes that the Reds have way too many problems in the back to challenge for the Premier League trophy.

Liverpool have had an indifferent start of the season, recording only three wins in seven games, and currently sitting seven points adrift of table leaders Manchester United and Manchester City. Just like last season, the Merseyside club is struggling in the back, conceiving easy goals almost every single game. Not only are Liverpool sloppy when it comes to defending, but they are also struggling to materialize on the chances they create, which leaves Shearer convinced that Liverpool are not capable of challenging for the title this season.

The former English striker was questioned which team left him underwhelmed this season and Shearer responded: “Liverpool. Going forward, creating chances, they haven’t scored enough goals.” he said, according to Goal.

“And defensively they’ve been as poor as ever. Nothing has changed from last season.

“I was at the game when they played Newcastle. Same old problems defensively, had a lot of the ball in the first half and should have killed the game off.Crouch: Mane & Salah have a healthy competition for goals Andrew Smyth – Peter Crouch reckons Sadio Mane has doubled his value in recent seasons, and boasts a “healthy competition” with Liverpool team-mate Mohamed Salah for goals.

“One great goal from [Philippe] Coutinho but other than they were poor going forwa上海夜生活rd.

“They’ve got no chance of winning the Premier League playing like that.”

Even though the Reds sealed a top four finish last season, their defensive issues remain unsolved and Shearer believes that Klopp could have done more to prevent that from happening.

“I know they got into the top four last season and got Champions League, which was a success. But one of their problems last season was conceding too many goals. And nothing has changed from last season to this season. [Klopp] constantly rotates the goalkeepers, which cant be helpful for the defenders.”

PSG: The Champions League is very important

Paris Saint-Germain head coach Unai Emery told his players to focus, as they are about to secure a top-spot in their Champions League group

The French side’s manager asked the supporters of PSG to stand up for his men in their efforts of claiming the top-spot in their Champions League group ahead of their clash with Celtic on Wednesday.

The leaders of the French top-flight are also leading Group B of the competition, with four out of four wins, being 3-points ahead of biggest rivals Bayern Munich.

PSG were 3-0 winners in the mee上海夜生活ting between the two in September and have already secured their place in the latter stages of the competition, GOAL reports.

If they manage to defeat Celtic on Wednesday, it’s almost sure that they progress as group winners with two matches remaining after the current round.

Unai Emery reminded both the fans and the players of the club to stay focused and do their best to achieve a top finish.Report: Icardi opens PSG account in 0-1 win over Gala George Patchias – Mauro Icardi opened his goal-scoring account for PSG in a 0-1 away victory over Galatasaray.While Thomas Tuchel has begun to integrate Mauro Icardi into…

“For us, the Champions League is very important. We want to tread a path that gives us the best possibilities. Because of this, we are group leaders,” the manager told reporters.

“To keep our position, we need to win here. Bayern have improved [since PSG won 3-0 in Paris].”

“If we win this, we will not be thinking about anybody else. We need to stay focused on taking all three points and continuing to progress,” he added.

“We want fans to be vibrant towards the team and for the players to give their best on the pitch,” Emery asked the team and the fans.

The other game in Group B is Bayern travelling to Belgium to face Anderlecht knowing one point would be enough for them to advance to the next stage of the tournament.

The German side have won 3 out of their 4 games so far, with only one defeat against PSG back in the Carlo Ancelotti era.

Benitez: “The difference was evident”

Following his Newcastle City’s 4-1 loss to Manchester United away from home, Rafael Benitez admitted that the gap between these two teams is simply too big – also because of the money spent on the signings.

Newcastle fell at Old Trafford despite taking the lead through Dwight Gayle and impressing early on, with goals from Anthony Martial, Paul Pogba, Chris Smalling and Romelu Lukaku continuing the hosts’ fine home form, according to Sky Sports. Benitez previously claimed that he was not happy with his side’s summer spendings and he admitted that the difference was not hard to be seen.

The former coach of Real Madrid or Chelsea spoke about this difference as he said: “For sure. This time, you see the difference between money spent. It’s not something we didn’t know, we knew it would make a massive difference between both teams. But I am really pleased with what I saw in the first 30 minutes.”Top 5 Premier League players in September’s last weekend Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – A fresh Premier League fixture just ended, which means we can talk about the Top 5 best players of September’s last weekend.After a fresh…

He added that the turnover of the match the equalizer from Martial: “I think it’s a quite simple analysis, a really good first half for 30 minutes, everything was right, we were working hard, we had a clear idea what to do, we did well. And then we conceded a goal, then the second goal made a difference in terms of the mentality. We had the chance of [Isaac] Hayden, later on, but we couldn’t score.”

Rafael Benit上海夜生活ez, in the end, claimed that he is proud of his players for the overall performance and the effort: “The second half was more difficult because of the belief that we had in the first half, to keep this belief until the end, it depended on the goal. And then when we conceded the third goal it was a different game. But I am really pleased and really proud of my players in their first 30 minutes. And after when you pay big money for players, they can make the difference, so you make mistakes, you pay for that because you play against top-class players.”

Mourinho will not lose sleep over missed handshake with Conte

The Blues manager went straight into the pitch after final whistle of the referee.

Manchester United head coach insisted he would not chase Antoni上海夜网o Conte just to shake hands with him after losing the Sunday showdown with 1-0 to Chelsea.

The pair have not been in the best relationship ever since the arrival of the Italian at Stamford Bridge as the Portuguese accused Conte of over-celebrating his team’s goals last season when the Blues dominated the Red Devils with a 4-0 win.

On Sunday, Conte went straight into the pitch at the final whistle, missing a potential handshake with Mourinho, who shook hands with the rest of the Blues’ staff.Jamie Carragher puts Chelsea over Manchester United and Arsenal Nedim Maric – In an uneventful derby, last night, Manchester United and Arsenal both got point each.Top four-fight this season looks like it’s going to be between…

The Portuguese, however, insisted there was no issue between the pair when he was asked about the missed handshake after the game.

“You want me to go and chase him in the middle of the pitch? I was there. I shook hands with the people who were there,” he told reporters after the game, according to Goal.

“I think one of them was his brother, the assistant, so I feel that by shaking the hands of his brother and the other assistants that I did my duty. I cannot go and run to chase him.

“Why should I wait [in the tunnel]? He doesn’t have to wait. There is no problem with it at all. You are always worried with these things… no problem.”

Conte uncertain of Luiz’s future at the club

The defender missed Sunday’s game against Manchester United as he was not even featured in the group for the game.

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte said he did not know if David Luiz has a future at the club after the Brazilian was left out for the Premier League showdown against the Red Devils.

Luiz was replaced by Andreas Christensen for the game against Mourinho’s men, with the full-back not even making it into the bench as 17-year-old Ethan Ampadu was chosen over him.

Despite the absence of David Luiz, Chelsea went on to take the three points thanks to Morata’s header in the 64th minute.Jamie Carragher puts Chelsea over Manchester United and Arsenal Nedim Maric – In an uneventful上海夜生活论坛 derby, last night, Manchester United and Arsenal both got point each.Top four-fight this season looks like it’s going to be between…

Speaking after the game Conte ruled out that there is a problem with Luiz, stating it was only his form that made him leave the Brazilian out of the squad. However, he also added that he has no idea if Luiz has future at the club even though he started during the week in the Blues’ 3-0 loss to AS Roma in the Champions League.

“Luiz’s future? I don’t know. He has to work really hard otherwise he will be on the bench or in the stand,” the manager explained to the BBC after the game. The Italian also added that this could happen to each and every one of his players, should they be out of shape.

Yet, speaking before the game to Sky Sports, Conte stated that the decision was entirely from a tactical point of view: “It is a tactical decision. There is Andreas Christensen in good form and we have Ethan Ampadu who is a good, young player at the club.

“We are conceding many goals so you have to find stability and solidity. We have to be patient with the team and defend in the right way.”

Preview: CSKA Moscow – Basel

CSKA and Basel both have three points after the first two rounds and they are currently third and respectively second in Group A.

Flashscore presents the key facts before the match:

CSK上海夜生活A Moscow have won 5 of their last 6 Champions League matches, but only 1 of their last 12 group games, which came in a 2-1 victory away at Benfica last month.

CSKA Moscow goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev has failed to keep a clean sheet in his last 41 group-stage and knockout matches in the Champions League, with his last one coming against Arsenal in November 2006.

CSKA Moscow have scored at least 1 goal in 15 of their last 18 home games in the Champions League, while Basel have failed to score in 7 of their last 11 away games in the competition.

There have been less than 3 goals in 7 of CSKA Moscow’s last 8 home games in the Champions League, while there have been at least 3 goals in 5 of Basel’s last 6 matches at this level.Can Marseille make it to the Champions League? Taimoor Khan – With a depleted workforce with not a lot of quantity or quality, Olympique de Marseille are bound to struggle this season. After being held…

Basel ended their 9-game winless run in the Champions League with a stunning 5-0 victory at home to Benfica in their last outing, largely thanks to an inspired performance from on-loan forward Dimitri Oberlin, who scored a goal in each half on his 20th birthday.

Missing players

CSKA Moscow: A. Dzagoev (achilles tendon injury), V. Berezutski (doubtful), A. Makarov (doubtful)

Basel: R. van Wlofswinkel (injury), G. Vailati (doubtful).

Valverde defends Piqu\u00e9’s handball

The Catalan boss believes the defender’s handball was simply instinctive.

Barcelona head coach Ernesto Valverde was adamant that Gerard Piqué acted unconsciously when he reached for the ball with his hand. The full-back was sent off as a result of the handball since he already had a yellow card, but Valverde is certain that the Spaniard’s actions were uninten上海夜生活网tional.

Speaking after the game, as quoted by Football Espana, Valverde stated: “When I watch games on TV, they seem placid, but it’s not the case,”

“We knew they’d get stronger once we went down to 10 men. That’s why we needed to find a second goal, so things would become easier.

“They came to defend and find a goal on the counterattack. With our opponents playing so deep, it was tough to find rhythm. Why take risks if they played deep and we had 10 men?Victor Lindelof’s agent confirms Barcelona interest Andrew Smyth – Victor Lindelof’s agent confirmed that Manchester United blocked a move to Barcelona for his client during the summer transfer window.

“Opponents disappointing? Olympiacos aren’t top [of their League] and came with the idea of surprising us in order to gain mental strength.

“They played a game that suited them, but we came away with very clear ideas.

“Piqué? I haven’t seen the replays, but I’d imagine it was all instinct, with the goal so close to him.”

Barcelona did not stop their perfect run in the Champions League as they now have three wins in three games, leading undisputedly their group in Europe.

\u0130lkay G\u00fcndo\u011fan speaks about his recovery

Manchester City player İlkay Gündoğan says recovering from his injuries has been mentally challenging.

The player admits it has been really difficult to approach his recovery with the right set of mind as he struggles to get fit for Guardiola’s side.

Gündoğan started only nine Premier League games last season due to an injury in December when he tore cruciate knee ligaments.

The 26-year-old is close to full recovery, but admits it has been really difficult for him to keep a positive mindset about his career since he missed both 2014 World Cup and 2016 Euro due to injuries.

“It is heavy mentally to accept that,” Gundogan told BBC Sport.

“It is really hard always to fall and fight your way back. You feel good and feel ready, then you get the next kick.Paiva says Felix would have done better at City or Barca George Patchias – Joao Felix would have become a better player at Manchester City or Barcelona according to former coach Renato Paiva.Renato Paiva was the prodigious Portuguese…

“The worst part is behind me now. I want to feel ready when I am fully back. I want to feel safe and confident. I don’t mind if it is two weeks or six.”

City are one of the favourites for the Premier League title in the forthcoming season, after some heavy spending on the market. However, the midfielder believes last year’s runners-up Tottenham will challenge for the title once again, despite not bringing in any new players.

“We felt that last year as well but it was a completely new experience for all of us. We know the Premier League a bit more now and can’t wait for the season to start.

“Tottenham are a great team. They have the style of foo上海夜生活网tball. They have young English players. Our experience last season shows it is really tough to beat them. They are really uncomfortable to play against.

“I am pretty sure, even if they will not say it loud, the people who know the Premier League know Tottenham are definitely a competitor for the title.

Guardiola to swap for Aubameyang

Pep Guardiola is already preparing his transfer strategy for the summer and the latest rumours point to a bid for Dortmund’s striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.Written by Cosmin Mihalescu. May 1, 2017.

Manchester City are ready to spend around £250m this summer to build a squad capable of  matching Guardiola’s ambitions. But this does not mean that they will just start throwing money away.

In order to transfer the 27-year-old Gabonese striker, Pep Guardiola is willing to include Kelechi Iheanacho in his bid. The young Nigerian is widely regarded as a hot prospect. His current market value is €10m, while Aubameyang’s market value is €65m. Therefore, in order to force a transfer, City will have to pay at least €55m in addition to offering Iheanacho to Dortmund.Inter Milan V Lazio: Players to 上海夜生活论坛Watch Taimoor Khan – Inter Milan are set to host Lazio at the San Siro on Thursday and the game is definitely going to be an exciting affair…

But in order to land the signature of Aubamenyang, City will have to face competition from PSG and Real Madrid, who have also expressed their interest in the striker. Borussia Dortmund, on the other hand, stated that they are not willing to let Aubamenyang go, not event for €100m.

In the 42 games played for Dortmund this season in all competitions, Aubameyang has scored 35 goals and registered 5 assists.