Guus Hiddink :Mikel is the ideal Player to bring balance to the team

Anyone seeking to understand Chelsea’s steady return to form under interim manager Guus Hiddink will find a partial explanation in the unassuming figure of holding midfielder John Mikel Obi.

 Having started just two of Chelsea’s final 16 Premier League games under Jose Mourinho, Mikel has started nine of 12 under Hiddink in the only notable non-enforced personnel change that the Dutchman has made to the starting XI. Naijabet.com

 

As well as being unbeaten in their 12 league games to date under Hiddink, Chelsea’s average number of goals conceded per game has dropped from 1.625 to 1, and Mikel’s defensive nous has been an important factor.

“He’s the ideal player to bring balance to the team,” Hiddink said earlier this year.

“He knows where the strength of the opponent is and he knows exactly how to cope with that.

“He doesn’t do it in a very brutal way — he’s very, very elegant. What I like to see very much is not just a quality player, but a player who can defend so smoothly. It’s beautiful to see.”

It is a configuration that has helped Chelsea climb to 10th in the league, kindling hope that they may yet succeed in overturning a 2-1 deficit in today’s Champions League clash at home to Paris Saint-Germain.

Mikel missed the two previous Champions League ties with PSG over the last two seasons. An unused substitute in both legs of the quarter-final in 2013-14, he was recovering from knee surgery last season.

But he has already made his mark on this season’s last 16 tie, having been the source of two goals in the first leg at Parc des Princes.

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Wolfsburg Reached Champions League Quarter-Finals for the First Time

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Wolfsburg reached the Champions League quarter-finals for the first time after Andre Schurrle’s goal sealed a 4-2 aggregate win over Gent.

The Germans had the best chance of a dour first half but Joshua Guilavogui’s 20-yard shot was saved by Matz Sels.

They wrapped up victory when Julian Draxler picked out Schurrle after a driving run to the byeline.

Danijel Milicevic’s shot wide from Moses Simon’s cross was the closest the Belgian team came to scoring ,Naija.com.

Dieter Hecking’s Wolfsburg side have dropped to seventh in the Bundesliga after a disappointing sequence of one win in nine games, but they deserved victory against plucky but limited opponents.

Before the game, Gent coach Hein Vanhaezebrouck said his side would need a “miracle”, but they lacked the attacking quality to fashion clear-cut chances.

The Belgian champions beat Valencia, Lyon and Zenit St Petersburg to qualify from the group stage, but they never threatened a repeat here.

And Schurrle’s late strike ensured that Belgium’s wait for a first Champions League quarter-finalist would continue.

Arsenal beat Hull City in FA Cup, Ended a run of five games without a Win

The Gunners were gifted the lead when Hull’s David Meyler set up Olivier Giroud to slot home.

Aaron Ramsey almost scored an own goal to let Hull back in but Giroud volleyed in to extend Arsenal’s lead.

Theo Walcott wrapped up the victory for the holders when he side-footed in and then rifled in a late shot. Naijabet.com

Giroud celebrated the birth of his baby boy on Monday and manager Arsene Wenger hoped it would inspire him to break his 11-game scoring drought.

The France striker was restored to the starting line-up, along with fellow forward Walcott, but the pair initially struggled against Hull, who had not conceded in six previous home games.

The Tigers were employing a three centre-back formation and rarely looked like being breached until Meyler’s mistake allowed Giroud to slot in his first goal since 13 January.

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Real Madrid reached Champions League quarter-finals with a 4-0 aggregate victory over Roma.

Cristiano Ronaldo scored his 40th goal of the season as Real Madrid reached the Champions League quarter-finals with a 4-0 aggregate victory over Roma.

Leading 2-0 from the first leg, Real peppered the visitors’ goal, although Edin Dzeko and Mohamed Salah wasted chances for Roma at the Bernabeu.

It proved costly as Ronaldo crashed in at the near post before setting up James Rodriguez for an angled finish. Naijabet

Roma hit the post but Real made the last eight for a sixth successive term.

With Zinedine Zidane’s team 12 points behind La Liga leaders Barcelona, and disqualified from the Copa Del Rey, winning the Champions League remains their only realistic chance of silverware.

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Earthquake caused by Leicester City fans after last minute Winner

Leicester City have been the surprise package in the Premier League this season and are clear at the top by five points with nine games left to play.

An “earthquake” made by football fans celebrating a goal has been recorded for the first time in the UK.

A University of Leicester team installed a seismometer near Leicester City’s  Power stadium and reported a minor quake with a magnitude of 0.3.

The tremor was attributed to a “sudden energy release” made by Foxes fans when Leonardo Ulloa scored a last-minute winner against Norwich, in February.

A seismometer was installed by geology students, and the British Geological Survey (BSG), at Hazel Community Primary School, 500m (0.3 miles) from the King Power Stadium, as part of a project to detect earthquakes around the world

However, Paul Denton, a seismologist from the BSG, said the team wondered if football fans would affect the detectors. Naijabet

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