Paper News and Gossip: Hart Halted, Wilshere Blow, Jose Eyes Striker and More

Alex LivieFeatured ColumnistNovember 4, 2013

Paper News and Gossip: Hart Halted, Wilshere Blow, Jose Eyes Striker and More

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    Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

    Monday's papers have plenty of reaction to the weekend games, while we're not short on preview coverage for the Champions League.

    There's a manager defending his side in the face of criticism about their lack of goals, while another reveals an injury problem for one of his star men.

    There's also transfer gossip and more in Monday's edition of the Paper News and Gossip roundup.

No Rapid Manchester City Return for Joe Hart

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    Joe Hart's spell on the Manchester City bench will continue, writes the Mail's Laurie Whitwell.

    Hart was dropped for City's Premier League win over Norwich on Saturday, with manager Manuel Pellegrini finally losing faith following a string of blunders.

    Costel Pantilimon did his cause no harm with a clean sheet in the 7-0 romp, and he will keep his place for the Champions League meeting with CSKA Moscow on Tuesday.

    Per Whitwell's piece, Pellegrini said:

    For the moment we must support Costel Pantilimon.

    Joe made a lot of mistakes, he knows. So I think for Joe it is a good moment to stop. I am sure that working hard he will return to normal, but I don’t know when.

    I have confidence in Costel. If I don’t have trust in him I will change it.

Jose Mourinho Hunting New Chelsea Striker

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    Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho has been given the nod to spend big on a striker in January, writes Neil Ashton, but the Mail scribe has no clue as to who the new man will be.

    Mourinho saw his side fall five points behind Premier League leaders Arsenal at the weekend, as they drew a blank in the 2-0 loss to Newcastle.

    Despite Fernando Torres' recent run of good form, Ashton states that: "Mourinho is privately frustrated that £50m forward Fernando Torres and Champions League-winning striker Samuel Eto'o have scored just one goal each in the Barclays Premier League."

    Ashton goes on to state that Demba Ba is not deemed good enough and the search for new blood has begun, while he also says the preferred option is to bring in a striker who is eligible to play in the Champions League.

Tweet Casts Doubt on Javier Hernandez's Manchester United Future

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    Javier Hernandez could have some explaining to do at Manchester United on Monday, after retweeting a story that suggested he should leave the club.

    The striker has been a bit-part player for the past couple of seasons, and international team-mate Carlos Vela said on Sunday that Hernandez should move on if he continues to warm the bench.

    Sky Sports produced the story and tweet, which, according to the Mail's Craig Hope, Hernandez retweeted.

    Hernandez deleted the message some time later, but Hope has a screen grab of the tweet.

    There may be a call from Red Devils boss David Moyes asking Hernandez to put forward his version of events.

Jack Wilshere Set to Miss Arsenal's Trip to Dortmund

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    Jack Wilshere is a doubt for Arsenal's trip to Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League on Wednesday, writes the Star's David Woods.

    Wilshere was absent for Arsenal's win over Liverpool on Saturday, with manager Arsene Wenger confirming, per Woods, the midfielder had an ankle problem.

    "Jack has an inflamed ankle," Wenger said.

    Woods revealed that Wilshere turned his left ankle in training, with the problem to be assessed by the club's medical team on Monday.

    But the Star's writer says Wilshere's chances of travelling with the rest of the squad "look bleak."

Andre Villas-Boas Rails Against Tottenham Critics

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    "Look at the table," was the message as Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas launched a staunch defence of his side in the face of questioning about their lack of goals.

    Spurs drew 0-0 at Everton on Sunday afternoon and have only nine goals to their name from 10 games in the Premier League.

    But a solid defensive record has enabled them to climb to fourth in the table, and Villas-Boas hit back when told only Hull have scored fewer goals among the sides in the top 10.

    The Guardian's Andy Hunter has the quotes:

    I don't think it is dramatic. We are on 30 goals in 17 games (in all competitions) and it is the second highest ever at the club at this stage so I don't worry about that.

    Hull are sitting 10th and we are fourth. The chances are coming and sometimes they go your way and the opponent is not there to stop it. The team is creating more chances and more shots.

    I can carry on about all the good statistics and others can carry on about all the negative statistics and the debate will go nowhere.

    At the moment it is results that have put us in fourth and in one of the spots for the Champions League. You can have more goals, less goals. We all want excitement but right now the team is doing extremely well.

    Roberto Soldado, a £26 million summer signing, is Tottenham's leading scorer in the league with four goals, but three of those were penalties.

Bits and Pieces: Klopp's Big Interview, Utd Eye Linetty and Bendtner in Demand

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    Jurgen Klopp
    Jurgen KloppMike Hewitt/Getty Images

    Everton boss Roberto Martinez is closing in on a deal for Dundee United centre-half John Souttar, writes the Mirror's Alan Nixon.

    Also under Nixon's byline is a report in the Mirror that claims United boss Moyes sent a scout to check on Lech Poznan midfielder Karol Linetty. There may have to be a second visit, as Nixon reveals the player was only used as a substitute.

    Crystal Palace, Hull, Stoke and Sunderland are all jockeying for position in the race to sign Nicklas Bendtner from Arsenal in January, writes Metro's Danny Griffiths.

    Ahead of Arsenal’s trip to Dortmund, Borussia coach Jurgen Klopp has given a lengthy interview to the Guardian’s David Hytner. He touches on a range of subjects including Wenger, Sir Alex Ferguson, orchestra, heavy metal, red wine and beer.