Why Premier League Clubs Should Target Jackson Martinez


Jackson Martinez - PortoJackson Martinez is a Colombian striker currently plying his trade in the Portuguese Primeira Liga with FC Porto and has been prolific ever since his arrival in 2012. In his first season at Porto, Jackson managed 31 goals in 40 appearances across 4 competitions, scoring 26 of them in the Liga, helping Porto to yet another league title. In his second season, he managed 29 goals in 51 appearances, however, he was unable to prevent a rather unsuccessful season for Porto as both Lisbon clubs finished ahead of them in the Liga table and they had to settle for a third-place finish and a play-off to reach the group stages of the 2014/15 Champions League. As for this season, he has already managed to rack up more than 20 goals. A clinical, reliable finisher if ever there was one. Continue reading

Vitor Pereira on his Way to Crystal Palace?


Photo: Paulo Santos/ASF

Photo: Paulo Santos/ASF

Vitor Pereira, the former manager of FC Porto and, more recently Saudi club Al-Ahli, is the latest name to be added to the short-list of the vacant Crystal Palace job. At 46, the two-time Portuguese Champion is not unfamiliar to the English media rumour mill, having been considered a strong contender to succeed David Moyes at Everton before the appointment of current manager Roberto Martinez.

Now, nearly two years on from that aforementioned speculation, Pereira is a free agent set for discussions with Glaziers boss Steve Parish after the sacking of Neil Warnock following a 3-1 defeat to Southampton as Selhurst Park. Continue reading

Silvestre Varela Loaned to West Brom


Varela - Portugal V Luxembourg

Silvestre Varela

Porto to West Bromwich Albion (loan)

After first-team chances looked slim this pre-season, Porto winger Silvestre Varela has left the club on loan. The winger, who had been an undisputed starter over the past few seasons now will join English Premier League side West Brom on loan until the end of the season. There is no mention of whether or not West Brom will have the option to sign him at the end of the loan, but with his Porto future up in the air, there’s every possibility an option does exist. 

After a disappointing 2013/2014 campaign, Porto renovated their squad heavily. Head coach Paulo Fonseca was sacked and was replaced by former Spanish U-21 team head coach Julien Lopetegui. With Lopetegui came a host of Spanish players, including Adrian (Atletico Madrid), Oliver Torres (Atletico Madrid), and Cristian Tello (Barcelona). Other players were brought in from clubs such as Real Madrid, Granada, and Feyenoord. These signings spelled the end of Varela’s time at Porto, at least temporarily. 

Though Varela is taking a step backwards in term of quality of club (from Porto to West Brom), he is certainly stepping up in terms of league quality. The English Premier League has formed a reputation for being one of the most competitive leagues in existence at the moment. Varela will now have the opportunity to play against some of the finest opposition in world football, which will do nothing but help his chances of appearing for the Portuguese National Team. 

Daniel Carrico Signs on at Reading


Daniel Carrico

Daniel Carrico

Sporting Lisbon to Reading

In a surprise move, Daniel Carrico has switched crisis-ridden Sporting Lisbon with Premier League relegation-battlers Reading. It has been widely-known that Daniel Carrico was looking to leave Sporting. Once touted as the future of Portuguese football, the defender’s development has stalled, and consequently, his starting spot at Sporting has disappeared. Once linked with multi-million dollar moves to clubs like Manchester United, Chelsea, Atletico Madrid, and Manchester City. Now, however, Carrico has moved to a bottom-table Premier League side for not even a million Euros. The final transfer fee? 750,000 Euros. Pretty shabby.

Carrico spoke of his departure from his boyhood club to Sporting’s website, saying: “It is with mixed emotions that I write this farewell message,” he said. “I’m leaving the club of my heart, where I had the privilege of graduating (through the youth ranks) and serving for several years. I’m leaving because I understand that I am at a stage in my career when I have to take chances. Moreover, the proposed project is extremely exciting to me and know I can succeed.”

Arsenal and Liverpool Eyeing Danilo Pereira


Danilo Pereira, of Parma FC, is a transfer target for Premier League giants Arsenal and Liverpool, according to reports coming out of Portugal. Danilo was one of Portugal’s standout players in their 2nd place finish in this summer’s U-20 World Cup. The holding midfielder currently plays for Parma FC in Italy. He is set to return to the club after he was loaned last season to Aris, in the Greek league. Danilo’s performances have not gone unnoticed, however. Arsenal and Liverpool are now interested, and though a move is unlikely, it still makes for a good story. Clubs such as Arsenal and Liverpool are not stupid in their interest in Danilo. He has shown signs that he will develop into a world-class defensive midfielder.

Fulham Tracking Zeca


Vitoria Setubal attacking midfielder Zeca is reportedly a target for English Premiership side Fulham. A representative from the English club was supposedly in the stands at the game against Sporting on Monday, checking out the 22 year-old. Zeca has been in fine form this season, most notably capped with a goal against Sporting in the cup. It’s not just Fulham. Other unnamed clubs have joined the race for his signature.