Thohir: One of Dzeko, Torres or Morata would be great for Inter

The Indonesian businessman has revealed that he wants to sigh a high-profile striker at the end of the season as he looks to restore the Nerazzurri to their former glory

Inter president Erick Thohir has admitted that he would like to see Edin Dzeko, Fernando Torres or Alvaro Morata arrive at San Siro this summer.

All three strikers have been repeatedly linked with the Nerazzurri in recent months and the Indonesian businessman is making no secret of the fact that he feels coach Walter Mazzarri could do with another attacking option as he looks to rebuild the club he assumed control of earlier this season.

“We want to make Inter a healthy club inside the next two to three years,” Thohir told reporters.

“That also means in terms of the squad. After having already signed Hernanes [from Lazio during the January transfer window], [Manchester United defender Nemanja] Vidic and others will arrive.

“We will take a forward. I know that names such as Dzeko, Torres and Morata are circling. If one of them arrives, it would be a good thing.

“We will also be able to take some Italians, but for the history of the club it’s not an obligation.

“We want to also return to playing in the Champions League in two to three years.

“We must also balance the average of the squad, which will be 26.2 years old, and the squad, given that we will be playing three times per week.

“For not, Inter is among the top 15 footballing brands in the world. We want to get back among the top 10.”

Dzeko has been told that he can leave Manchester City this summer if the Premier League outfit receive what they deem an acceptable offer for the Bosnian.

Torres, meanwhile, is expected to be a part of an exodus of strikers at Chelsea, while fellow Spaniard Morata is reportedly open to leaving Real Madrid in search of regular first-team football.

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04 2014
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'Bayern must show passion and heart to beat Madrid' – Guardiola

The former Barcelona coach has urged his “exceptional” players to get back to winning ways after they suffered two straight league defeats

Pep Guardiola has called upon Bayern Munich to show “passion and heart” in their next games as they look to progress to the finals of the Champions League and DFB-Pokal.

The Bavarian giants have won just one of their last five games in all competitions – a 3-1 victory over Manchester United in their quarter-final tie – during which time they lost two consecutive Bundesliga matches.

But Bayern, having already wrapped up the league title, are still in with a chance of winning a second straight treble, as they face Kaiserslautern in the DFB-Pokal semi-final on Wednesday a week before the first-leg of their Champions League last-four meeting with Real Madrid.

And Guardiola has urged his players to up their game and show more desire if they are to reach the final of each competition.

“We need to show passion and heart,” he told the Bundesliga’s official website. “That’s the only way we’ll make it to the final in Berlin and overcome Real Madrid to reach the Champions League final. Sometimes defeats help you to improve.”

The coach then urged his “exceptional players to go back to playing their own game”.

Captain Philipp Lahm reiterated his coach’s point, insisting his side cannot slip up like they did against Borussia Dortmund at the weekend.

“We have to perform to 100 per cent of our abilities, concentrate on the game and not make so many mistakes like we did against Dortmund.”

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04 2014
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Martino: If Barca play well, we will win

The Argentine believes his side must recreate their previous displays against their arch-rivals if they are to beat them and urged his players not to give up on the league

Barcelona coach Gerardo Martino says a good performance from his side will see them beat Real Madrid in Wednesday’s Copa del Rey final, but insists the club cannot be the best in the world every year.

The Catalan giants crashed out of the Champions League at the quarter-final stage after losing 2-1 on aggregate to Atletico Madrid, whom they trail by four points in La Liga with five games left to the season.

As the Blaugrana’s best chance of lifting silverware this term comes from their cup final meeting with Madrid, Martino feels his side have enough in them to beat their arch-rivals, but says fans have to remember they won’t always be at top of world football.

“If we play well, we’ll win,” Martino told AS. ”This team knows how to play well and win. We’re demanding something we’ve already seen from these players.

“I know what the fans expect from this team, but they need to understand you won’t be the best in the world every year. These footballers are a before and after in the history of this sport.

“We’ve got to get back to moments from the two Clasicos we’ve already played. The start of the last one, when we knew how to suffer and hold on. We need to recreate these moments in the match.

“I’m facing the possibility of winning a trophy with the lads. In this final I need to be part of everything they’ve given. We won in the Super Cup on the back of other people’s work. To win we need to be at our footballing best.”

The Argentine dismissed talk that his side need a victory in order to save their season and stressed they cannot give up on the league as they are still in with a chance of winning it.

“I don’t think it’s revenge for the league and the Champions League. It’s a trophy, the final, and it’s there to be won. We need to fix things that have happened, but we’ve already suffered for what’s happened.

“I don’t want to talk about what didn’t happen or give extra importance to what we’re doing now. This is the final of the Copa. I won’t drown out how we feel about the other two competitions. 

“We can’t afford not to be up there, in case they [Atleti and Madrid] slip up. 

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04 2014
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Callejon: No regrets over Madrid exit

The versatile attacker has stressed that he is happy with life at the Serie A outfit and is pleased with his decision to move on

Jose Callejon has admitted leaving Real Madrid last summer was a tough decision, but insists he has no regrets as he nears the end of his first season with Napoli.

The 27-year-old made the switch to the Stadio San Paolo side in a reported €10million deal after failing to become a regular starter at the Bernabeu and Callejon has responded with a return of 12 goals in 32 Serie A appearances for Rafael Benitez’s men in what has been an impressive debut campaign.

The former Espanyol man concedes he found it difficult to depart a club of Real’s stature, but stated a desire for first-team football made it a necessity to leave.

“I left Real Madrid in order to find greater consistency to my performance, in order to play more and to make a change in my career,” he told Corriere dello Sport.

“It had not been easy, Madrid are a club it is hard to leave, but at some point my love for football prevailed and I went to Napoli.

“Benitez described the project and spoke of this club. I had some offers, but I was convinced by everything. Now I can confirm that I wasn’t wrong.

“In Madrid, football is important, you live with this enormous pressure. But here it has the same worth as religion.

“I feel good here and I feel the support of the people. I hope to go as far as possible with Napoli.”

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04 2014
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'They've won without Ronaldo before' – Santillana backs Madrid for Copa glory

The former Spain international is optimistic about the Santiago Bernabeu side’s chances of lifting the Copa del Rey, especially given Barcelona’s defensive injuries

EXCLUSIVE
By Alberto Pinero

Real Madrid icon Santillana is confident that Carlo Ancelotti’s men have what it takes to cope with the absence of Cristiano Ronaldo in Wednesday’s Copa del Rey final against Barcelona.

The prolific attacker picked up a hamstring problem earlier this month and Ancelotti confirmed on Tuesday he would not be fit to face Gerardo Martino’s men in Valencia, where he scored the winning goal in the final of 2011.

While he admits the loss of Ronaldo is a blow, Santillana believes los Blancos have proven they can produce the goods without the 29-year-old – as they did in their 4-0 thrashing of Almeria at the weekend.

“Real Madrid have played and won without Ronaldo before. They have coped with his absence as a team,” Santillana told Goal.

“But there’s no denying that he gives something extra to the team, just like Lionel Messi does to Barcelona.

“They have so much quality that they can win titles on their own and the rest of the team knows that. A team consists of 11 players, but fact remains that Ronaldo and Messi are the best in the world.”

Santillana feels Madrid’s strength in attack and Barca’s defensive injury problems tips the Copa final in the capital club’s favour, and the 61-year-old believes they can dream of a possible treble should they triumph on Wednesday.

“Real Madrid are not inferior to anyone. Barcelona head into the game without a number of regulars in defence and on the back of some defeats, while Madrid are at their best in attack,” he said.

“Winning the treble will be more complicated than a month ago, but it’s still possible. Atletico [Madrid] are a great team, but it will not be easy for them with both La Liga and the Champions League.

“I don’t see any team that is better than Madrid. Everybody sees Bayern Munich as the favourites, but I can see Madrid beating them.”

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04 2014
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