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Reports in Germany say that Leverkusen already got in touch with De Bruyne's agent over a January transfer. They say that De Bruyne wants to go by all means, and that his agent will meet Mourinho and Gourlay today. Apparently we want 15-20m for him, which Leverkusen think is a bit steep.

My personal opinion - lower the asking price and ask for Lars Bender (a solid DM) in a part exchange!

For those of you who speak German: http://www.kicker.de/news/fussball/bundesliga/startseite/596822/artikel_bayer-und-de-bruyne-in-der-finalen-poker-phase.html

He will probably go on loan.

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Ham   

I have actually, quite a few times. Never been there with Chelsea but I have a Milan supporting friend and we've been over a few times to watch AC Milan. I've also been there on business a few times and I must say, I really like it.

The city centre around the Doumo is a bit weak and definitely a tourist trap but there's areas around the city centre which is quite nice and packed with lovely restaurants. There's also some nice bits with small streets close to the canals.

It's not Paris or Vienna - but pretty enough if you know where to go.

Nightlife is also quite good. And the women in Milan are stellar. Not just the models, but the 'normal' girls as well.

I've turned this into a travel topic.....

Agreed on the women though. Just wow! The problem is you can't compete for them because all the men look like bloody models as well.

Maybe that's why I disliked the place :(.

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I've turned this into a travel topic.....

Agreed on the women though. Just wow! The problem is you can't compete for them because all the men look like bloody models as well.

Maybe that's why I disliked the place :(.

LOL.

Yes, never quite warmed to nothern Italian fellas... Too much grease and female-like behaviour for my taste.

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Zoowraa   

*puts cheerleader outfit on*

You seem to reply to a lot of Droy's posts so I can't see how you'd think this was a sudden introduction- league strength across Europe is a recurring theme for him. I happen to agree that Everton are a stronger, better team than Benfica and that the strength-in-depth of the Premier League would take plenty of the most lauded foreign sides down a peg or two.

I don't know why anyone would take anything a manager says about a move for their best player so seriously, never mind when that manager is a notoriously mealy-mouthed bullsh*tter!

*cheerleader hot pants rip*

Who is better between Everton/Benfica is not the point, the point is switching and using angles to suit his argument when he wants, then ignoring them because they dont suit. He is classic Adrian Durham, can present many good angles to suit his argument when he wants too. Then can switch to something is just black and white when it suits his argument too.

I admit, often his posts rub me up the wrong way because they are presented as facts and can often being wordered in a complicated manner, completly on purpose. I also admit there is a little history there which I have had no acknowledgement of nor have I received an apology for. I think if someone on this forum said you were making racist comments, when you clearly were not and others on here backed that up at the time, you too would be a little pi**ed off with that person,this may seem trivial, but at the time these type of racist comments on social networking incidents were high profile in the press. Lets not forget it was only a couple of days back you took offence to pillow beater and it was not even aimed at you, so I dont think I am being unreasonable to be annoyed by this .

He knows he did this and he knows I know where he did this. Irony is, he is very quick to take the moral highground when terms such as rip a new hole is used and voices his displeasure.

Taking all that into account. I think it might explain why he pi**es me off. But I am never offensive to the man, I just merely point out he is a fantacist.

Edited by Zoowraa

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Lets not forget it was only a couple of days back you took offence to pillow beater and it was not even aimed at you, so I dont think I am being unreasonable to be annoyed by this .

No- I asked for a very naughty phrase (far naughtier than 'beater'!) to not be used on a public forum, and responded quite amiably to the posters who replied. To recognise that something is inappropriate is not to be offended by it. Who exactly such a phrase is aimed at is entirely irrelevant.

I can't speak for Droy and don't know the exchange you're referring to, but me politely asking for fellow board members to not use a phrase with very unpleasant origins is irrelevant. To paint me as 'offended' (which many take to mean 'hysterical') is disingenuous.

Edited by thevelourfog

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Zoowraa   

No- I asked for a very naughty phrase (far naughtier than 'beater'!) to not be used on a public forum, and responded quite amiably to the posters who replied. To recognise that something is inappropriate is not to be offended by it. Who exactly such a phrase is aimed at is entirely irrelevant.

I can't speak for Droy and don't know the exchange you're referring to, but me politely asking for fellow board members to not use a phrase with very unpleasant origins is irrelevant. To paint me as 'offended' (which many take to mean 'hysterical') is disingenuous.

Ok. I apologise for calling you offended when you may not of been offended.......but silly but hey ho.

You chose to get involved and be Droy's cheerleader in this aspect. I am sure you would find him a complete hypocrite if in my position.

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Ferreira - Ivanovic = Evens

Essien - Ramires = Minus lol

Duff - Oscar = Evens for now but lack P.L experience.

Agree with you for the most part with exception to the above. Ivanovic I feel offers more than Ferreira as a whole in that he can actually do something in attack sometimes.

Essien back then was nothing short of dominant as a box to box midfielder, and I feel he would have been at least as highly rated as Ramires is now.

As for the attacking options, I would take Oscar, Schurrle and Willian over Duff, Kalou and Joe Cole.

Your overall assessment is correct though, as everyone knows our defence is aging and significantly weaker, and we lack a top class midfielder. Back then our wing choices were lacking but our midfield and defence was stacked, and I'm afraid it's gone the other way around now.

As for strikers, and I'm probably going against public opinion here, but I'm actually pretty content. It's been a lot worse and we've gone through many strikers who performed poorly, from Kezman to Sheva and Torres 2 seasons ago, to the strikers who didn't quite fit in such as Crespo and Mutu. Even Drogba early on took a while to get going, it wasn't pretty at the start. Sure, we don't have a Drogba calibre player now, but we have interesting options. Ba as our third choice striker is quality and Lukaku is developing nicely.

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GURJ SS   

Agree with you for the most part with exception to the above. Ivanovic I feel offers more than Ferreira as a whole in that he can actually do something in attack sometimes.

Essien back then was nothing short of dominant as a box to box midfielder, and I feel he would have been at least as highly rated as Ramires is now.

As for the attacking options, I would take Oscar, Schurrle and Willian over Duff, Kalou and Joe Cole.

Your overall assessment is correct though, as everyone knows our defence is aging and significantly weaker, and we lack a top class midfielder. Back then our wing choices were lacking but our midfield and defence was stacked, and I'm afraid it's gone the other way around now.

As for strikers, and I'm probably going against public opinion here, but I'm actually pretty content. It's been a lot worse and we've gone through many strikers who performed poorly, from Kezman to Sheva and Torres 2 seasons ago, to the strikers who didn't quite fit in such as Crespo and Mutu. Even Drogba early on took a while to get going, it wasn't pretty at the start. Sure, we don't have a Drogba calibre player now, but we have interesting options. Ba as our third choice striker is quality and Lukaku is developing nicely.

I agree that Ivanovic gets the ball and brings it forward more, but Ferreira had a better cross in my opinion.

I think you might have understood me wrong, I said "minus lol" to Ramires being near Essien. For me If Essien had not got injured he would have been mentioned alongside Keane and Viera as the most dominant midfielder the P.L has seen, I wouldn't put Ramires close to a prime Essien. Not dissing Ramires, but Essien was a beast.

As wingers go, I named the starting 11, but I get what you mean. We have bags more talent then back then, but Robben and Duff had their best time at top of their game, and destroyed teams with direct play. Hazard will no doubt be better, Oscar and Willian also, I see alot of Duff in Shurrle.

Drogba when not scoring over 20, at least made the team score and dominate play. He got players like Robben, Duff and Lampard starting the attack nearer to the opposition goals, instead of what we do now, which is pass sideways and backwards far too much.

The problem now is we don't have a consistant forward, none warrant 1st choice, maybe Torres if I had to pick one. With Lukaku coming back I want to see us get more pace upfront as well, I want Hulk as I think apart from the air he is the complete package. Lewandowski for Torres would be a great move too.

What we had before were players who dominated a team, now we just don't have the quality throughout a starting 11, let alone a squad. The quicker it is addressed the better. I'm afraid that looking at our current squad, I think we need a over haul skipping out our AMs.

Edit: We were not boring back then. I am all for Jose to go back to the style he used first time around. It wasn't boring, it was dominant, it was football being played to be successful. I wouldn't call Robben, Duff and Drogba and Lampard boring, nor Joe Cole. Hopefully Jose ditches this 4:2:3:1; "fancy football" that doesn't work, and opt for a 4:3:3; with tactics, power, pace and skill, an when we are winning most of all organisation. (Not directed at you, just a general statement of what I feel towards our quality and style).

Edited by GURJ SS

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