Thomas Tuchel has been dismissed by Chelsea following Tuesday's Champions League loss to Dinamo Zagreb, ending a near-20-month stay at Stamford Bridge.

The German arrived midway through the 2021-22 season as Frank Lampard's successor, and steered the Blues to an improbable Champions League triumph just weeks later.

But despite success for the former Paris Saint-Germain boss in Europe, domestic glory has been harder to come by.

This week's defeat to Zagreb was the final straw for new owner Todd Boehly, after a slow start to the new Premier League season that has seen Chelsea win just three of their first six games.

In the wake of his departure, Stats Perform takes a look at the highs and lows of the Tuchel era at Stamford Bridge...

HIGH: European glory from the ashes

Having stepped in to replace Lampard with Chelsea ninth in the Premier League and slipping away from European qualification, Tuchel did more than steer them back on track – he pulled off a shock silverware smash-and-grab.

Not only did he drag them to an eventual fourth-place finish, he oversaw two-legged wins over Porto and Real Madrid to reach the Champions League final – and there, shocked favourites Manchester City to claim the Blues' second title in Europe's biggest club competition.

LOW: Ignominy on the continent

For that high-water mark, however, Chelsea have also had issues at continental level, perhaps best exemplified by two disparate results – this week's loss to Zagreb and last season's Champions League quarter-final exit to Madrid.

Defeat to the Croatian side came with a toothless attack that failed to gel for the German, but the crash against Madrid – when they allowed Karim Benzema to find an extra-time winner – showcased their struggle to close out games.

HIGH: Final delights...

In the time Tuchel has been in charge at Stamford Bridge, he reached all three domestic cup finals available to him, with FA Cup showpiece appearances in 2021 and 2022, and an EFL Cup trip to Wembley, too.

That saw him stand alone in the history of the club and cemented his reputation as something of a cup specialist.

LOW: ...and failures

But on each occasion, he failed to guide the Blues over the line, losing last season to underdogs Leicester City before suffering a pair of defeats against a quadruple-chasing Liverpool side this year.

While he has enjoyed greater success abroad, the struggles at Wembley have haunted his reputation – and may well have played a part in his ultimate dismissal.

HIGH: Champions of the world

Chelsea's Champions League triumph qualified them for a shot at two more major prizes last season – and credit is due for Tuchel guiding them to both, allowing them to stake a claim as the greatest club team in world football.

A nervy Super Cup win over Villarreal was aided by Kepa Arrizabalaga's penalty shootout heroics, while Kai Havertz' extra-time penalty helped the Blues sink Palmeiras to be crowned Club World Cup winners.

LOW: Lukaku lethargy

If there is to be a player that marks Tuchel's legacy at Chelsea outside of his Champions League triumph though, it will almost certainly be Romelu Lukaku – one of the worst transfer flops in recent memory.

Returning to Chelsea after a Serie A title win with Inter, hopes were high for the Belgian's homecoming, but his poor form and difficulties within the German's system saw him frozen out over the latter half of the season.

Lukaku returned to Inter on a year-long loan over the off-season, with just eight Premier League goals in 26 games, and it remains to be seen whether he ever steps foot back in Stamford Bridge again or, if like Tuchel, his time at the club is now over.

Even accounting for Chelsea's shoddy start to the Champions League, few would have expected Thomas Tuchel to be out of a job by Wednesday.

The Blues started their European campaign with a lacklustre 1-0 setback at Dinamo Zagreb, a result that follows an underwhelming trend to start the season.

With three wins, two losses and one draw from six games, the Blues sit sixth in the infant Premier League table.

Still, most would have expected Tuchel – who has won the Champions League and Club World Cup with Chelsea – to be afforded more time to bed in the likes of Raheem Sterling, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Wesley Fofana and Kalidou Koulibaly following a big-spending transfer window under the club's new owners led by Todd Boehly.

But, alas, he has not, and for the first time Chelsea are after a new boss under their new regime. We have taken a look at the most likely candidates to replace Tuchel at Stamford Bridge.


The last time Chelsea were looking for a successor for a sacked manager, they turned to a former Paris Saint-Germain boss in Tuchel to replace club legend Frank Lampard. Might history repeat itself here? Certainly Pochettino would be attainable after the Argentine departed the Parc des Princes in July despite winning the Ligue 1 title. Pochettino also brings extensive knowledge of the Premier League having managed Southampton before joining Tottenham in May 2014. Pochettino failed to deliver major silverware but did lead the club to the 2019 Champions League final and secured four straight top-four finishes.


A name that has cropped up early in the bookmakers' odds is Brighton and Hove Albion boss Potter, a man who has earned plenty of admirers due to the attractive brand of football employed by his Seagulls side. Having coached Swedish side Ostersund for seven years, Potter joined Swansea City in 2018 and a year later made the move to the Amex Stadium. After finishing 15th and 16th in his first two top-flight seasons, Brighton placed ninth last term and Potter has long been tipped for bigger things, with his case boosted by a fantastic start to the 2022-23 season.


Another boss out of work, though reports suggest Zidane remains keen to take on the France job should Didier Deschamps leave after Qatar 2022. One of the greatest players of all time, Zidane has also enjoyed success in the dugout at Real Madrid. Over two spells as coach at the Santiago Bernabeu, Zidane won three Champions League titles (all in a row from 2016 to 2018), two LaLiga medals, and the Club World Cup twice among a plethora of honours. He also showed his ability to manage big egos at the Santiago Bernabeu, a trait that may appeal to Boehly.


A move that would probably represent an outside bet given Leicester City's shoddy start to the season that sees them winless after six matches and rooted to the bottom of the table, but there is context behind that – including the sale of Fofana to Chelsea. Rodgers previously managed Liverpool and went agonisingly close to winning the title in the 2013-14 season – eventually finishing runners-up to Manchester City. After an impressive spell with Celtic, Rodgers returned to English football with Leicester and defeated Chelsea in the 2020-21 FA Cup final. Moreover, Rodgers is a familiar face at Stamford Bridge having managed the club's reserve side from 2006-2008.


Simeone is an undoubted legend at Atletico Madrid, where he has managed to consistently compete against heavyweight rivals Real Madrid and Barcelona in LaLiga for over a decade. A two-time league winner, to go with medals in the Europa League, Copa del Rey and Supercopa a Espana, Simeone knows how to win trophies – even though two runs to the final of the Champions League both ended in defeat to Real Madrid. But having finished third and 15 points off the top last term, and started this season in patchy form (two wins, a draw and a defeat from four games), perhaps Simeone may finally be swayed by the prospect of pastures new.

Thomas Tuchel has sensationally been sacked by Chelsea following Tuesday's 1-0 defeat to Dinamo Zagreb in the Champions League, the Blues have confirmed.

The German was appointed as the successor to club legend Frank Lampard in January 2021 and led Chelsea to Champions League glory with a 1-0 over Manchester City in May of the same year.

More success followed in the form of trophies in the UEFA Super Cup and Club World Cup, but Tuchel also lost two FA Cup finals and an EFL Cup final – beaten in both domestic cup showpieces on penalties to Liverpool last term.

The UK government's sanctioning of former owner Roman Abramovich amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine eventually led to a change in ownership with a consortium led by LA Dodgers part-owner Todd Boehly completing a £4.25billion deal.

Chelsea were active in the transfer market, bringing in the likes of Raheem Sterling, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Wesley Fofana, Kalidou Koulibaly and Marc Cucurella.

The Blues have made an indifferent start to the season, though, winning three, losing two and drawing one of their opening six Premier League games to sit sixth in the table.

Tuesday's shock defeat to Dinamo persuaded the club's new owners the time is right to make a change.

A club statement read: "On behalf of everyone at Chelsea FC, the club would like to place on record its gratitude to Thomas and his staff for all their efforts during their time with the club.

"Thomas will rightly have a place in Chelsea's history after winning the Champions League, the Super Cup and Club World Cup in his time here.

"As the new ownership group reaches 100 days since taking over the club, and as it continues its hard work to take the club forward, the new owners believe it is the right time to make this transition.

"Chelsea's coaching staff will take charge of the team for training and the preparation of our upcoming matches as the club moves swiftly to appoint a new head coach."

Thomas Tuchel has sensationally been sacked by Chelsea following Tuesday's 1-0 defeat to Dinamo Zagreb in the Champions League, the Blues have confirmed.

The German was appointed as the successor to club legend Frank Lampard in January 2021 and led Chelsea to Champions League glory with a 1-0 over Manchester City in May of the same year.

More success followed in the form of trophies in the UEFA Super Cup and Club World Cup, but Tuchel also lost two FA Cup finals and an EFL Cup final – beaten in both domestic cup showpieces on penalties to Liverpool last term.

Cristiano Ronaldo will be in peak condition for the World Cup and Portugal can "rest easy" about what he will bring at Qatar 2022, says Selecao legend Luis Figo.

Superstar forward Ronaldo has found himself out of the team at Manchester United in recent weeks, following on from a pre-season of uncertainty.

The 37-year-old reportedly wanted to depart Old Trafford just 12 months after returning in order to find a move to a club playing in the Champions League.

A move failed to materialise, though, and Ronaldo's only start this season under new boss Erik ten Hag came in the humiliating 4-0 defeat at Brentford.

That is partly explained by the fact Ronaldo missed much of United's pre-season due to personal reasons, but the Red Devils have chalked up four straight wins with the legendary forward out of the starting XI.

With a little over two months until Fernando Santos' side begin their World Cup campaign against Ghana, Portugal fans will hope their leading man is afforded more starts.

Real Madrid great Figo is confident he will be in prime form for the tournament.

Speaking at the FPF Football Talks 2022 in Lisbon, Figo said: "I have no doubt about Cristiano [Ronaldo]'s quality, commitment and professionalism. 

"I'm sure he'll be at the World Cup in the best possible [physical] condition. What will those conditions be? I don't know. 

"But without a doubt, given his quality and professionalism, as I said, Portugal can rest easy about what he can give to the Selecao."

Portugal needed to win a play-off against North Macedonia to book their spot in Qatar but, in a tournament considered wide open by most pundits, the Selecao will fancy their chances of a deep run.

Figo is also sure they can be a force to be reckoned with in Qatar.

"I think Portugal has one of the best teams in the world. But a Euro and a World Cup depend on many factors. Not only on individual and collective quality," he added.

"I hope that Portugal, after a complicated qualification phase, can show its value, that we can achieve our goals, that is to say, reach the final and win this World Cup."

During his playing days, Figo was involved in one of the most controversial transfers in football history when he swapped Barcelona for Clasico rivals Real Madrid for a then world-record fee back in July 2000.

The story of the move has been retold in the Netflix documentary 'The Figo Affair: The Transfer that Changed Football'.

Asked how he felt about the situation having relived it via the show, Figo said: "I lived it so I don't feel any different. 

"Of course, those who didn't live it, who have spoken and criticised, will have a different feeling. But my feeling is the same as 22 years ago."

Premier League champions Manchester City may be willing to do more business in January.

Pep Guardiola's side added Erling Haaland, Kalvin Phillips, Sergio Gomez and Manuel Akanji in the last transfer window.

But City may be looking to further strengthen their squad amid a chaotic schedule in 2022-23.


Manchester City are plotting a January move for Real Madrid midfielder Toni Kroos, according to El Nacional.

The 32-year-old is out of contract at the end of this season and he has rejected Madrid's offer of an extension.

As a result, Los Blancos may consider selling Kroos in January and Pep Guardiola is a long-time admirer.


Galatasaray are set to clinch a loan deal to sign Paris Saint-Germain forward Mauro Icardi, reports Fabrizio Romano. The final details of the move are being discussed, with Icardi set to undergo a medical in Turkey soon. The Turkish transfer window closes on Thursday.

– After being heavily pursued prior to the transfer window closing, Aston Villa's Brazilian midfielder Douglas Luiz is planning to leave the club when his contract expires at the end of this season, according to UOL.

– The Telegraph reports that Wolves will consider signing ex-Newcastle United forward Andy Carroll should their move for Diego Costa collapse. Carroll is a free agent after leaving West Bromwich Albion.

– Southampton's Nathan Redmond will fly to Turkey to complete a move to Besiktas on a one-year deal, claims Fabrizio Romano.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola praised the performance of Jack Grealish after playing an hour in his first game back from injury in Tuesday's 4-0 Champions League win at Sevilla.

Grealish had not played since City's 4-0 Premier League win over Bournemouth on August 13 due to a minor injury.

The pressure is on the 26-year-old England international, who underwhelmed in his first season at City after joining from Aston Villa in August last year for £100million.

Grealish played 38 times, scoring six goals in all competitions last season for City, but did not live up to the expectations of his hefty transfer fee, nor play with his typical freedom.

The midfielder started and played 62 minutes against Sevilla, and while he did not score or provide an assist, Guardiola was delighted with his return.

"Jack arrived incredible in the pre-season," Guardiola said at the post-game press conference.

"In the first game against West Ham unfortunately he had a little injury. It's important for him to have again this 53, 60 minutes."

"The pitch was uncomfortable for the players. He was so aggressive in the first half, more than aggressive than Phil [Foden] in terms of goal and making the movements in there.

"Sometimes missed the last pass but it's not easy there. We need him a lot this season. Jack will be so important. He played a really good game."

Guardiola was also rapt with the debut of deadline-day signing Manuel Akanji, who only joined team training earlier this week following his move from Borussia Dortmund.

"We are delighted, just training one day and a half with us," Guardiola said.

"He showed in Dortmund his experience in Europe. A really, really good central defender that City bought to us.

"He played really well, his focus, attention. He has a quality quite similar to Aymer [Laporte], he can break the lines with a pass. He read the spaces really well. I am very pleased for him."

Erling Haaland grabbed two of City's four goals, taking his season tally to 12 since his move from Dortmund.

"I think his numbers in his career, not just here, in previous teams is quite similar," Guardiola told BT Sport. "He has an incredible sense of goal."

Haaland became the first City player to score on both his Premier League debut and Champions League debut for the club.

The 22-year-old is also the fastest player to 25 goals in Champions League history, coming across 20 games, bettering Ruud van Nistelrooy and Filippo Inzaghi's mark of 30 games.

Liverpool coach John Achterberg and Newcastle United counterpart Daniel Hodges have been charged with improper conduct by the Football Association (FA) following an altercation at the end of last week's Premier League meeting.

Newcastle came agonisingly close to taking a point from last Wednesday's trip to Anfield, only for substitute Fabio Carvalho to strike in the 98th minute, handing Liverpool a 2-1 win.

At the end of a highly charged affair, a member of Newcastle's coaching staff appeared to throw a bottle into the Liverpool technical area, prompting an FA investigation.

English football's governing body have now opted to charge one man from either backroom team, with Achterberg also accused of using abusive or insulting gestures.

"Coaches from Liverpool FC and Newcastle United FC have been charged with breaching FA Rule E3 during their Premier League fixture on Wednesday 31 August 2022," began an FA statement.

"It is alleged that the behaviour of John Achterberg and Daniel Hodges in the 98th minute of that game was improper, and that the Liverpool coach also used abusive and/or insulting gestures."

The two coaches have been given until Thursday to respond to the charges.

Newcastle boss Eddie Howe said last week he had "no idea" why eight minutes of additional time were played at the end of the contest, while Jurgen Klopp suggested Liverpool's winner was the "perfect response" to time-wasting from the Magpies. 

Both Howe and Klopp claimed not to have witnessed the bust-up sparked by the bottle-throwing incident after the match.

Eric Bailly has criticised Manchester United for what he perceives to be a bias towards English players following his departure for Marseille.

Bailly was very highly rated when he became Jose Mourinho's first signing at the club in 2016, but he left late last month on a loan deal that could become permanent having only once accumulated more than 21 appearances in a full season.

Injuries undoubtedly played their part in Bailly's struggles, but he was also prone to moments of rashness and the occasional loss of concentration, which did not help his cause.

Seemingly, however, Bailly thinks there were other factors at play as well, claiming there to be a bias towards English players at the club, with his comments interpreted by many as clear criticism of the much-maligned – and now out-of-favour – captain Harry Maguire.

"The club should avoid favouring English players and give everyone a chance," he told the Times.

"[The club should] encourage competition in the dressing room, not just look out for some. I've always had the feeling that the [English] national player was prioritised.

"That doesn't happen at Chelsea or other big Premier League clubs. Some people take it for granted that they are going to start, and that weakens the team.

"Luckily [Erik] ten Hag has a lot of character and I hope he can change that dynamic."

The data certainly suggests United looked to English players more than their rivals over the past six seasons, the period Bailly is referring to.

While Liverpool (33), Tottenham (30) and Arsenal (27) have both seen more English players represent them for at least one minute across all competitions over the period in question than United (26), the Red Devils have given greater prominence to more homegrown players.

Between August 2016 and the end of last season, they had nine English players feature for at least 5,000 minutes across all competitions – none of the other so-called 'big six' have more than six English players that meet the same criteria.

Ten Hag's decision to drop Maguire and Luke Shaw suggests United do now have a manager who is willing to shake things up again, but still Bailly wanted out.

"I played important games and in some I was chosen as the best player. I think when I was given the opportunity I rose to the occasion, I just lacked consistency, because I think I deserved more minutes," he continued. "I've had good times and won titles.

"I met Ten Hag in the dressing room at the end of last season when he went to sign his contract.

"I was packing my things because my intention was to leave, but he told me he wanted me to stay because he was going to give minutes to everyone.

"I agreed to do the [pre-season] tour with United, and he kept his word, but I don't want to play every now and then. I want to do it every week and feel important. I want to get my confidence back."

Gavi is one of the hottest young talents around Europe having become a regular at Barcelona in 2021-22.

The youngster has been capped 10 times for Spain already, despite only turning 18 in August.

However, Barcelona president Joan Laporta has been frustrated that he is yet to re-commit to the club.


German champions Bayern Munich have joined the race for Barcelona's teenage midfielder Gavi, reports Bild.

Gavi is out of contract at the end of this season and already being pursued by Liverpool and Manchester United.

Bayern are monitoring Gavi's contract status to see if he does renew his deal with the Blaugrana, with reports he is restless.


– The Standard reports that Chelsea's main target in January is a new central midfielder, with Ajax's Mexico international Edson Alvarez top of the list.

– Chelsea owner Todd Boehly has offered a hint that Mason Mount is set for a new contract, liking a tweet from Fabrizio Romano that claimed talks are under way with a final proposal soon.

Miralem Pjanic may end his time with Barcelona on Tuesday, according to Fabrizio Romano, who claims he is set to fly to UAE to discuss a deal with Sharjah FC .

Wolves' proposed move for ex-Spain international Diego Costa could collapse due to his work permit application being denied due to a lack of recent international appearances, reports The Sun. The ex-Chelsea forward is a free agent.

Thomas Tuchel claimed Reece James' development is "far from over" after the right-back signed a new long-term contract with Chelsea.

James has emerged as a key player in Tuchel's Chelsea side since he took over last January, driving forward from a wing-back role or filling in on the right of the German's favoured three-man backline, and has made five Premier League appearances this season.

The England international penned a new five-year contract with the Blues on Monday, which reportedly makes him the highest-paid defender in their history. 

Speaking ahead of Chelsea's Champions League opener with Dinamo Zagreb, Tuchel expressed his delight at the Blues' ability to tie down one of their prized assets.

"Of course, he's a very decisive player for us and he's an academy player, and we told you many times how important he is," Tuchel said.

"I think his development is far from over, there's a lot to learn for him and there's a lot to come,

"But of course, we're happy to have a key player with us for so many years."

On the domestic front, Chelsea have claimed 10 points from their first six Premier League outings, which have contained a series of controversial decisions.

Last month, the decision to allow two contentious Tottenham goals in a fiery 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge led Tuchel to declare referee Anthony Taylor should no longer officiate Chelsea's games, comments which saw him fined by the Football Association (FA).

On Saturday, meanwhile, West Ham had a potential last-gasp equaliser against the Blues denied by a VAR review after a collision between Edouard Mendy and Jarrod Bowen, a decision David Moyes described as "scandalous" as he accused Mendy of feigning injury.

Asked to comment on the plethora of perceived mistakes made in recent weeks, Tuchel asked: "What can I say now to be clear and not pay a fine again? Where is the line? 

"Maybe it's better if other people talk about it, our last three home games were like… I don't need that anymore. Red cards, VAR decisions, goals given, decisions not taken where it's obvious to take them.

"Speaking about the last game, I understand the frustration, I understand the discussions about this decision. For me, it's not a 100 per cent decision. It was against Tottenham, it was not now.

"I was happy that the referee got the chance to have a review on the pitch and then it is his decision, we will never have a game without mistakes but at least he gave everyone the feeling that he took the decision.

"I understand the frustration, now it's maybe not on me to comment on it too much but I think the quality of the mistakes, nobody is happy with that."

Pressed on Moyes' comments about Mendy, Tuchel highlighted the FA's refusal to punish the Irons boss, adding: "I did not hear the accusations and you know what happened to me when I spoke about the referee… it was pretty expensive.

"I told you after that I will not comment anymore. I can understand his frustrations, his point of view, and we'll leave it there."

Chelsea have been inconsistent throughout the season's early weeks, and Tuchel believes Tuesday's trip to Zagreb is an ideal opportunity for the Blues to kick-start their campaign.

"We are ourselves in a moment where we need to improve. We are not fully happy with the results," he said.

"We are not fully happy with our performances, so we need to take the next step and it's Champions League so it's very exciting. 

"We are very aware of what the challenge is, to play the first match away in a group stage is always difficult, it can always end up in complicated situations, but I think it's very important that we accept it and play a humble match.

"We will accept the challenge and we will accept the fight, and then we can also have the belief and trust that we are able to win, but we need to perform, for sure."

Former Liverpool forward Bobby Duncan has hit out at his former agent for working to "jeopardise" his career, three years on from a controversial move to Fiorentina.

Duncan, then considered a rising star at Liverpool, made headlines in 2019 when then-agent Saif Rubie accused the club of causing the youngster "deep mental health issues" before negotiating a move to the Serie A team. The Reds always denied such claims.

However, the attacker – who is also a cousin of Reds legend Steven Gerrard – has struggled since the transfer and now plays for Spanish third-tier team Real Balompedica Linense after a failed spell at Derby County.

On Monday, Rubie made an explosive radio appearance, telling talkSPORT: "I actually advised him [Duncan] to stay at Liverpool and you have to understand one thing, which is what I was trying to tell you guys, my job is to do the best for whoever is telling me to help them. 

"In that particular case, you can choose to believe me or not, I thought him staying was the best outcome. It wasn't meant to be, and in the end it got a bit ugly with Liverpool, which is unfortunate."

But Duncan, who dropped Rubie as his agent shortly after joining the Viola, has refuted those claims in a series of fiery tweets, asserting: "You and I both know the truth. 

"I didn't have a decision nor say as you took it upon yourself to jeopardise my career and to turn a local lad away from his boyhood club and leave me and my family to pick up all the pieces.

"Not once have I spoken upon this topic in four years as it's been my main priority to get my career back on track. Yet you think you have the right to mention my name on a live radio show.

"The truth will be told by myself when the time is right. I should never have trusted my career in your hands. I have learnt my harsh lesson there. And I just pray you have learnt yours as it could ruin another young boy's career. 

"And lastly, just to clarify, there was no advising given as you point blank made your mind up, publicly, and by then the damage had been done."

Rubie also worked as an intermediary on Antonio Rudiger's move from Chelsea to Real Madrid earlier this year and used his radio appearance to claim Los Blancos' offer was the smallest the German received. 

"Antonio Rudiger has been one of the best, if not the best, defender in the world and Premier League," he said.

"It made Carlo Ancelotti want to bring him to Real Madrid. What is the value of a top-flight, top-level centre-half in the game?

"What if I told you Chelsea, and the old regime, basically made next to no effort to keep the player.

"At the time he was very happy to stay and potentially be the captain of the club. He was offered a contract that was half the amount Romelu Lukaku was earning.

"Let me confirm this, live on air, the Real Madrid deal was the smallest deal on offer. There was a club in England offering almost double the amount and a club in Europe doubling the amount.

"I'm not going to discuss the specifics. Everyone knows there were teams interested in this player. He was one of the best in the world."

Bernardo Silva's mooted departure from Manchester City did not materialise as it was "no longer the right time" when a "concrete offer" was belatedly made, his father Paulo has said.

The Portugal international was strongly linked with an exit from the Etihad Stadium during the transfer window, with Barcelona heavily tipped as a potential destination.

But Silva ultimately stayed put with Pep Guardiola's Premier League champions, revealing afterwards a late bid had arrived from an unnamed suitor.

Silva suggested City's inability to recruit a replacement late in the window halted any move, and his father has added a transfer did not work "for everyone" at that point.

"There [were] a lot of conversations but not really a concrete offer in time that we thought could be made," Paulo Silva told Stats Perform at the FPF Football Talks 2022 in Lisbon.

"By the time these offers started to emerge, we realised that it was no longer the right time for everyone. If things were to happen, they would have happened rationally.

"So, it wasn't the ideal scenario for Bernardo when he's 28. He is a mature player. He still has time to give to football to learn and grow further. Things have to be done with rationality and not emotionality."

Silva has two goals and two assists in the Premier League this season, helping City remain unbeaten as they look to retain their title.

Christian Eriksen has had a transformative effect on Manchester United, so says club great Paul Scholes.

Eriksen arrived ahead of the new campaign on a free transfer, having restarted his career with Brentford last term following his cardiac arrest at Euro 2020, and has started every game so far under Erik ten Hag.

The former Inter and Tottenham playmaker has emerged as the creative hub of Ten Hag's rejuvenated squad at Old Trafford and delivered a superb display to topple league leaders Arsenal on Sunday.

An assist, a team-leading three key passes and 33 successful passes (also a team high) helped United seal a 3-1 victory.

His tally of key passes was more than the per 90 average of any United midfielder last term (Bruno Fernandes – 2.6), and Scholes believes the Denmark international has been crucial to United's upturn in form.

"Forwards know when the ball's coming, they know they've got a midfield player who is thinking about them even before the ball comes," he said on how Eriksen lifts United's attack.

"They know he's watching, he's looking all the time. He's always scanning the pitch and he's only thinking about going forward. I can't tell you how important that is as a number 10 and as a wide player.

"If you don't have that and you have the players that we've had playing in there who are always facing backwards and going backwards, their movement's a waste of time, so whatever movement they do it doesn't matter.

"You see Bruno [Fernandes], who's so clever to get in those spaces behind the midfield and in front of the back four, but you need someone to find him.

"Christian Eriksen has certainly got that. For a number 10 to have any kind of influence on a football game then they need a midfield player of that kind of quality."

Per 90 minutes this season across his six Premier League appearances, Eriksen averages 65 touches, 1.3 chances created and 6.6 recoveries, signifying his importance to Ten Hag's midfield.

Gabriel Jesus believes Arsenal will come back stronger after seeing their perfect start to the Premier League campaign halted by Manchester United on Sunday.

Arsenal dominated for long periods but were unable to win their first six games of a top-flight campaign for the first time since 1947-48, as Marcus Rashford followed up Antony's debut goal with a second-half brace to clinch a 3-1 win for the Red Devils.

The Gunners, who briefly got back on level terms through Bukayo Saka on the hour mark, have now won just one of their last 16 Premier League games at Old Trafford (five draws, 10 losses).

But Arsenal remain top of the early Premier League standings, and Jesus believes they will take valuable lessons from the reverse.

"The feeling is frustration because we play, we control the game and [before] the first two goals we concede, we were better than the opponent - and then we just concede," he said. 

"But now is the time to learn from it and improve. We are doing so well this season but there are still things to improve for everyone, as individuals and as a team.

"Everyone is together and we stick together until the end.

"We came to play against a strong opponent and it's always hard, it's the Premier League. 

"So we are not happy because, in my opinion, we could win because we played so much better. But that's football, they have quality as well and then if you don't go there and kill, you are going to have a big problem – and that's what happened."

Remarkably, given Jesus has now faced United in 10 Premier League games, the Red Devils are one of just three sides he has faced in the competition but not scored against, alongside Cardiff City and Brentford. 

With Mikel Arteta leading Arsenal's youthful side to the club's joint-best Premier League start since 2004-05, when they took 16 points from their first six outings (also getting 15 points in 2013-14), Jesus believes they will still improve further.

"If you look at our team, you can see we are still young. It is the youngest team in the league, in the toughest league of the world," he added.

"We are playing so good and then we play against an opponent, who is young as well, but we have to learn from it. 

"We have to stick together and improve as a team and don't think about this one. This one is gone, no one is perfect. No team in the world is perfect and we have to play to try to score and don't concede. 

"That's football and we are doing this, but sometimes the opponent has quality as well. They come and they can score. Now it is our challenge to improve a lot of things, and come back strong."

Arsenal travel to FC Zurich in the Europa League on Thursday before hosting Everton in the Premier League three days later.

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