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 By Chris Atkins

Success of Demba Ba and Mohamed Sissoko crucial for Shanghai Shenhua

Demba Ba is the latest player to seek success at Shanghai Shenhua.
Demba Ba is the latest player to seek success at Shanghai Shenhua.

How does a football club emerge from sustained chaos? While for most supporters of top European teams this is a question they never need ask, for those elsewhere it is one which emerges with astonishing frequency. A change of owner, president or general manager is often greeted with promises of hope and progress, but invariably little changes until there is meaningful reform at all levels -- and even then success is far from guaranteed.

For traditional Chinese powerhouse Shanghai Shenhua, it remains...

Ligue 1 teams sell a lot of their best players, but it's not a bad thing

ESPNFC's Janusz Michallik provides the lowdown on West Ham's recruitment of France international midfielder Dimitri Payet from Marseille.

Geoffrey Kondogbia (Internazionale), Dimitri Payet (West Ham), Franck Tabanou and Andre Ayew (both to Swansea City) have all already gone. Giannelli Imbula, Jordan Amavi, Fabinho, Idrissa Gueye, Yannick Ferreira-Carrasco or Raphael Guerreiro could follow soon.

A quick look at the current transfer window in Ligue 1 shows that this summer is no different than ones in the past: bigger clubs in bigger leagues come to do their shopping in France. The country continues to be the place to go to get...

The transfer window rumours and speculation promote hope among fans

Manchester United assistant manager Ryan Giggs says the club intends to make signings with star power, to return the club to the top of English football.

Will Manchester United ever sign Wesley Sneijder? Or Nicolas Gaitan? Produce a word cloud for the club's last eight transfer windows and those two would be in a font so big, you could see it from the moon.

Will Arsenal nail down William Carvalho or even his long obsolete prototype, the lesser-spotted Yann M'Villa? Could this the year that Liverpool finally sign a wincing Edinson Cavani?

Every summer transfer window seems to see the same football clubs linked with the same players, or at least the...

Neil Tovey must shape South African football amid questions over his role

Neil Tovey celebrates South Africa's African Nations Cup victory with Nelson Mandela in 1996.

The South African Football Association has finally called on one of their most successful faces as they look to emulate and ultimately go beyond the success of their 1996 African Nations Cup victory.

Neil Tovey, who captained the team to their only continental triumph, has been appointed technical director of the federation for the next five years but his influence may not be felt at the highest level, where it may be most needed.

Tovey's new job will focus more on grassroots with his main task...

 By Uli Hesse

Germany youngsters seek to defend U19 title after U21 heartbreak

Portugal thrash Germany to advance to the U21 European Championship.
Germany celebrate during their semifinal win over Austria on their way to winning the European U19 Championships in 2014.

For German football fans, the tournament deluge continues unabated. On Sunday, the European U19 Championship starts in Greece and Germany will be looking to retain the title the team won last summer.

They will be also looking to inject the feelgood factor back into German football following the U21's disastrous 5-0 semifinal defeat against Portugal in the European U21 Championship on June 27.

This U19 competition is not as widely covered as the Euro U21 equivalent but there was a time when it was...

Van Gaal has returned the arrogance that once propelled Man United

The ESPN FC panel respond to Wayne Rooney's suggestion that Manchester United are only a few signings away from challenging for the Premier League title next season, while Shaka Hislop indicates they need to sign a marquee striker.

It's too early to judge whether Manchester United are on their way back to the summit of English football, but they've certainly got their old swagger back. From the noises coming out of Old Trafford, you'd think that the club had only just missed out on the title in May and was now regrouping in anticipation of another tilt.

This weekend, Ryan Giggs echoed Louis van Gaal's contentious view that United were "close" last season with such confidence that you actually have to stop to remind yourself...