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Posts Tagged ‘maikon leite’

Last Sunday away against Joinville, Palmeiras reportedly played one of their most uninspiring games of all times: the goalless draw was a sleeping pill from start to finish and not even injecting Valdivia or Kelvin into the formula had any effect. With that, Palmeiras compute two draws in two games in the Brazileirão – certainly not the start foreseen.

This week coach Oswaldo stepped up the pace at practice sessions.

Sunday, at the novel time of 11am, Palmeiras welcome Goiás at the Allianz Parque. An astonishing 30.000 tickets have already been sold. For a Sunday morning game. Against a rather inexpressive opponent. At the start of the championship. Palmeiras are something else.

Speaking of the Allianz Parque, our stadium is once again nominated for an International award, having previously won the 2014 “Stadium of the Year” of the Stadium DataBase and the “Most Spectacular of the Future” by Spanish El Gol Digital. This time, the Allianz Parque is one of the finalists for the “New Venue Award”, of The Stadium Business. Stay tuned.  

Maikon Leite has left the squad to joint Sport of Recife for the remainder of the season. Early in the year, the fast forward enjoyed Oswaldo’s confidence, but soon enough showed his limitations. As Leite’s contract with Palmeiras ends in May of next year, we’ll likely not see him fly our colours anymore. Which is good news.

Change to the squad is not stopping with Leite: a few other players, like Ayrton and Victor Luis, are likely to continue their careers elsewhere. Oswaldo is looking at a reduced squad, but also making room for the 2-3 athletes Alexandre Mattos is expected to bring in for the Brazilian championship.

Then there’s Dudu. You will remember he was shown the red card in the second leg of the Paulistão final against Santos and that in the turmoil that followed on the pitch, he gave the referee a little shove from behind. Well, the almighty Supreme Tribunal of Sports this week sentenced Dudu to a 180 days suspension. Palmeiras’ lawyers will appeal. In similar cases, the initial sentence has been converted to a three-game suspension. Brazilian justice at its best, with zero predictability. Especially as we’re talking Palmeiras.

Well, at least we now know our next adversary in the Brazil Cup: after having drawn twice with Vitória, ASA is the team to beat. The first leg will be played on Wednesday next week, the second leg yet without a date.

Rounding things off with a special mention to all our German fans out there: Zé Roberto promoting the TV Palmeiras youtube channel and its 300K+ subscribers – of course, in German.
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Sich freuen, der Sieg ist unser!

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Arouca is our #5

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This afternoon, defensive midfielder Arouca agreed to withdraw his claim against Santos of roughly half a million US dollars in unpaid wages. The amount will instead be paid by Palmeiras, who in return will retain 40% of the player’s federative rights as Santos now have agreed to release the 28-year-old from his contract. The release would likely have happened anyway, tomorrow Friday, when Arouca’s case was to be brought up before a judge. By anticipating a deal, both clubs avoided what could have been a lengthy battle in the courts, in addition to keeping good, perhaps even excellent, relations between them. 40% of the player’s rights stay with Santos, while the remaining 20% belong to an investor.

Upon signing, Arouca will become Palmeiras’ 17th acquisition this season. And although both Zé Roberto and especially Dudu are considered big names, Arouca must be considered the heaviest hitter of them all. Strongly identified with Santos, where he resided 2010-2014, he has also played four caps for Brazil, in 2012.

As news leaked that Arouca was free to sign with Palmeiras, within minutes the #BemVindoArouca (Welcome Arouca) hashtag was trending on twitter.

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Valdivia returned to the squad today. He was examined and, as expected, continues to suffer from an injury to the thigh. He will be put under special treatment.

Another player who will stay close to the medical department, but for considerably longer, is recently arrived forward Kelvin: he twisted his knee last week during training, did not tear any ligaments and will luckily not require surgery, but is expected back only in three months’ time. Leandro, Kelvin… The joke is Maikon Leite’s hiding a voodoo doll somewhere.

Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!

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20-07-2013-19-18-23-zagueiro-thiego-meia-valdivia-figueirense-2-x-3-palmeiras-cristiano-andujar-divulgacao-20072013.
Palmeiras were once again put to the test last Saturday, this time against an opponent carrying some weight – Figueirense, from Florianópolis – and on hostile ground. Would Valdivia confirm his ascending curve? Would Alan Kardec make his debut?  Would the Verdão bag another three points? Yes, yes and yes.

Rising to the top of the tables, Palmeiras showed power of reaction: after Leandro having missed a penalty, Palmeiras went into halftime behind on the score sheet. Returning considerably more alight and with Kardec as the reference point up front, chances materialised: a shot from Vinícius was cleverly deflected by Vilson, finding the net. Shortly after, André Luiz bagged his first brace in the Palmeiras jersey, taking advantage of Figueirense’s weak aerial coverage, multiplied by the fact that the team had just become one man short. Palmeiras suffered the equalizer before Kardec, five minutes from stoppage time, put his forehead to a cross from Ronny, saw the ball hit the post and proceed in the direction of Valdivia, who securely placed it where it belonged. Don’t miss the highlights.
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Palmeiras have a week of training before next Saturday’s clash with current 12th positioned Guaratinguetá. With more quality players available than ever before  – Kardec, Eguren, Menezes – coach Kleina have interesting options to explore.

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The extinction of the Palmeiras B team, swapping Barcos for four Grêmio players and the signings during the Confederations Cup brought total number of players in the Palmeiras squad to well over forty. That is now being corrected, mostly by placing players in other teams to gain experience: young Chico is playing for Santo André, João Denoni and Emerson for Oeste. Patrik is at Sport, while midfielder Tiago Real is heading for Náutico to join Maikon Leite and Leandro Amaro. Weldinho seems to be heading for Sporting/POR. The only player who has left “for good” is Maurício Ramos, now at Sharja FC. Well, there’s also the striker Kleber, who recently returned to Porto/POR after a not very impressive season over here.

Still no news on a master sponsor…

But apparently there’s a launch of an upgraded version of the supporter programme “Avanti” due within the week. Stay tuned!

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Palmeiras v2.0 came on last Saturday, still a few players short: Alan Kardek recovering form, Vilson idem, Eguren signed but not yet with all papers cleared for play, and Leo Gago with a few weeks to go before full recovery.

Now, what we DID have was Prass between the posts, Valdivia commanding the midfield, Charles the pitbull by his side and returning youngster Luís Felipe on the right flank. With six minutes Leandro opened the scorecard. Oeste threw away a few good opportunities to equalise (Kleina needs urgently correct defensive positioning, especially airballs) but stopped short, seeing Palmeiras double up with Leandro again just before halftime. Second half was Palmeiras steamrolling all over Oeste, Charles bagging twice and closing the scorecard 4-0.

Yes, the opponent wasn’t the strongest, but nevertheless Palmeiras showed new qualities and personality. Valdivia was directly involved in three of the four goals. Mendieta came on in the end and didn’t score twice due to one great save by the Oeste keeper and one bad call by Caio, who opted for shooting when he should’ve passed the ball.

All in all a good performance, especially the offensive moves. If the new pieces fit as expected, Palmeiras will sail through the Brasileirão like a breeze and be a serious contender for the Copa do Brasil title.

Next challange is ABC, at the Pacamebu stadium, this coming Friday. A good crowd is expected: it’s been a while since Palmeiras played in São Paulo due to the four-game punishment imposed due to incidents last year.

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Eguren_unveiledSpeaking of Sebastián Eguren: the defensive midfielder was unveiled today, receiving the #4 jersey from the hands of president Paulo Nobre. The 32-year-old was excited about the future of not only playing in Brasil but for a big club like Palmeiras. Having spent the last ten years abroad, playing mainly for clubs in Spain and the Nordic countries, Eguren expects no difficulties in adapting to Brazil. Those who saw his first training session at Palmeiras can nothing but approve: the tall member of the Uruguayan national squad has a strong presence, showed passing qualities and good positioning.

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RamosAt Sharja FC, Maurício Ramos is the new owner of the #4. Officially unveiled at the beginning of the week, the centre-back, with close to 200 games for Palmeiras, expressed his gratitude toward club and supporters alike, showing great appreciation for the almost four years he spent at the Verdão.

Anything Palmeiras wishes Maurício the best of luck in this new endeavour.

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Maikon Leite said his goodbyes, left… and boomeranged back. There are few details available, but something obviously got in the way of his transfer to Qatar club Umm-Salal Sports. Training isolated from the rest of the squad while awaiting a definition in regard to his future, things have certainly looked better for the 24-year-old striker. A possibility is re-inserting Leite into the negotiations with Portuguesa in the Ayrton-for-Luis Ricardo negotiations.

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Remember the 2011 Martinuccio case? Palmeiras lawyers have silently and patiently been working on the case, awaiting a decision by FIFA. Palmeiras are claiming roughly US$ 4.5 million in compensation, in addition to the suspension of the player and a fine for Fluminense. Palmeiras’ lawyer André Sica is leaving for Zurich this Friday to check up on the case. “We’re looking after our interests and only want what’s just”, Sica stated. One can only hope that sooner or later, Martinuccio – currently at Cruzeiro – and Fluminense will pay a price for breaching the pre-contract.

Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!

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Fat-PigIt’s a fattened Palmeiras returning after the month-long Confederations Cup break. The already large squad – mostly due to the extinguishing of the B team – has been inflated by Mendieta, Menezes, Kardec and, in a matter of days if not hours, Eguren. With more than 40 players in the squad, Kleina has received the mission to deflate: even practice sessions suffer due to the exaggerated numbers. Maurício Ramos and Maikon Leite have already left for Sharjah (Emirates – for good) and Umm-Salal (Qatar – one-year loan) respectively. Expect more to follow.

Coach Kleina yesterday announced the 20 players traveling to Presidente Prudente to take on Oeste in the seventh round of the Brasileirão B on Saturday: keepers Fernando Prass and Bruno; centre-backs Henrique, André Luiz and Tiago Alves; wingbacks Luis Felipe and Juninho; defensive midfielders Charles, Wesley, Márcio Araújo and João Denoni; offensive midfielders Mendieta, Tiago Real, Valdivia, Serginho, Ronny and Fernandinho; strikers Caio, Vinicius and Leandro. Apart from the novelty of having Valdivia and Prass back from the medical department, Luis Felipe (previously on loan to Penapolense) replaces Ayrton on the right flank. Menezes and Kardec are not yet in physical conditions and were left out.

Yours truly expected the announcement of a master sponsor during the break, but drew a blank. Yesterday, president Nobre signed an agreement with the philanthropic institution Santa Casa: the logo will feature on Palmeiras’ jersey in the coming two home games at the Pacaembu – the 12th against ABC and the 30th against Icasa. The haemorrhage continues…

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Palmeiras were a bit of a mixed bag against Millonarios from Colombia in yesterday’s first leg in the group of 16 in the South America Cup. At the Pacaembu stadium before some 7.000 spectators – actually not a bad number considering the day and time of the game and the focus Palmeiras and palmeirenses are giving to the Brazilian Championship – Palmeiras showed superiority and, as in previous games under Kleina, opened up the scorecard within 15 minutes. With Barcos serving his national squad and Assunsão a Thiago Heleno resting, we saw a starting eleven composed of Bruno; Artur, Maurício Ramos, Román and Juninho; Henrique, Correa, Márcio Araújo and Daniel Carvalho; Maikon Leite and Obina. Unfortunately, Leite twisted his ankle in the early minutes of the game and was substituted for Luan (in any case Leite will not play on Saturday against São Paulo due to suspension, but let’s hope for a speedy recovery).

The end result, 3-1, was good but not great. Palmeiras relaxed a bit too much, especially mid second half, and allowed Millonarios to apply considerable pressure. Bruno was terrific between the posts but was beaten by an unlucky own goal from Artur. However, on the whole, the team performed well. Román showed a lot of spirit, Daniel Carvalho has his best display in ages, both Luan and Valdivia (came on with 15 minutes to go in the second half) worked well offensively, stressing the opponent to commit mistakes. Kleina again showed he has a good grasp of the squad and all his substitutions aimed at turning Palmeiras more offensive. We like that.
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The return game takes place in three weeks’ time. Palmeiras can afford to lose by one goal and still qualify for the quarter-finals.

As of today, the focus is back 100 per cent on the Brasileirão and Saturday’s derby against São Paulo. The three victories under Kleina have been against relatively weaker teams; this will be the first actual test. Maximum alert in regard to the referee picked for the clash: Paulo César de Oliveira has the worst possible track record against Palmeiras and in any serious country/football federation he would have been asked to clear off a long time ago. Expect penalties against Palmeiras, expect our players seeing the red card. Expecting anything.

Avanti Palestra!

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It’s common football knowledge that teams normally respond well to a new coach, at least in the first round or two. It’s also pretty safe to assume that Kleina’s influence on the squad during the two and a half days available to him must be considered small to minimal. Nevertheless…

Against Figueirense, the starting eleven consisted of Bruno; Corrêa, Maurício Ramos, Thiago Heleno and Juninho; Henrique, Marcos Assunção, Márcio Araújo and Valdivia; Maikon Leite and Barcos. No surprises there. Arroz com feijão, as a Brazilian would say. However, there were minor changes (Barcos without his beard) and major improvements (Maikon Leite without that ridiculous turd-mohawk hairdo of his). And as soon as the ball started rolling, the change in attitude was perceived: fearlessness, determination, aggressiveness. Perhaps the clearest indicator of this was Palmeiras not relaxing even after having scored twice within ten minutes of kick-off. Importantíssimo. There’s hope for the remainder of the championship.
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Hope and determination was also words used by uncontested captain Marcos Assunção after the game. “As long as there’s a shiver of hope, I’m fighting, we’re fighting. I we have to give our lives, we’ll give our lives”.

Palmeiras have never been a place for the weak. Now, it’s rather unusual for a player to chicken out in the manner as midfielder João Vítor did earlier this week, asking for a time out due to “having received threats” after making a crucial error that led to Corinthians’ second goal last week. He didn’t travel to Florianópolis to face Figueirense. As far as I’m concerned, he shouldn’t travel anywhere at all, neither ever again wear the Palmeiras jersey. In fact, it seems as this might be the most likely scenario, considering that João Vítor’s contract with Palmeiras expires 31 December. Ciao!

Speaking of cowards: in contrast to practice, vice-president Frizzo didn’t travel to Florianópolis, neither did any other director. Thus no one was present to represent Palmeiras at the highest level. Under normal circumstances this would be unadvisable. Considering that this was the first game of our new coach, nothing short of a disgrace. Shame on you, Frizzo. Shame.   

Palmeirenses yesterday supported their team and today must side against Flamengo, Bahia and Coritiba: to diminish the gap to these three is key no matter what.

Our next game is this coming Saturday against Ponte Preta – coach Gilson Kleina’s former club – at the Pacaembu. After that, Palmeiras prepare for the first leg against the Colombian team Millonarios in the South America Cup group of 16.

Avanti Palestra!

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