Barca icon Iniesta seals Vissel Kobe switch

first_imgTransfers Barcelona icon Iniesta completes move to Japanese side Vissel Kobe Chris Burton Last updated 1 year ago 15:41 5/24/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Andres Iniesta Vissel Kobe Getty Images Transfers Vissel Kobe Barcelona Primera División Japan Football League The World Cup-winning midfielder has been officially unveiled by his new J-League employers after bringing an iconic career at Camp Nou to a close Andres Iniesta has been officially unveiled as a Vissel Kobe player, with the J-League outfit having snapped up the Barcelona legend in the wake of his departure from Camp Nou.Having graduated out of the famed La Masia academy system in Catalunya, the 34-year-old matured into one of the most decorated players of the modern era .He helped Barca to nine La Liga titles and four Champions League crowns during his time at Camp Nou, while also landing World Cup and European Championship honours with Spain. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Sorry, Cristiano! Pjanic is Juventus’ most important player right now Iniesta has, however, decided to open himself up to a new challenge and will be continuing his distinguished career in Asia.A social media post on Wednesday revealed that the classy midfielder was heading to a “new home” , with Vissel Kobe now confirmed as that destination.He told reporters after penning a contract: “This is a very special day for me. This is a very important challenge for my career. I’d like to express my heartfelt gratitude for your trust in this project.”There were many offers. I’d like to thank the other clubs who showed an interest. The reason I chose Vissel is because this is a very interesting project. They trusted me as a player.”Japan is amazing, the culture is good. I’d like to get used to Japan, enjoy the life here and get into the team.”China had been considered the most likely landing spot for an iconic figure once his departure from Barca after 16 seasons was announced .No deal could be done there, though, while talk of a possible switch to the Australian A-League also came to nothing.EMBED ONLY Andres Iniesta Vissel Kobe GFXInstead, Iniesta has headed to Japan, with Vissel Kobe parading their new signing at a press conference in Tokyo on Thursday.The club’s chairman, Hiroshi Mikitaini – who is the chief executive of Japanese electronics company Rakuten, who are Barcelona’s shirt sponsors – believes Iniesta can be “a terrific inspiration for Japanese football society” and help Vissel Kobe complete their “goal of becoming the number one club in Asia”.last_img read more

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Senegal hold off Poland in World Cup opener

first_imgPoland 1 Senegal 2: Good fortune and bad errors hand Africans Group H win Jamie Smith Last updated 1 year ago 01:04 6/20/18 Senegal_cropped Getty Images An own goal from Thiago Cionek and M’Baye Niang’s first strike for Senegal earned Aliou Cisse’s side a 2-1 victory in Group H. Senegal upset Poland with a 2-1 Group H victory in Moscow that owed plenty to poor mistakes from the European nation.Poland were widely expected to qualify for the knockout rounds but after suffering a seventh loss in their last nine World Cup matches, FIFA’s eighth-ranked team are in danger of making an early exit.Thiago Cionek’s own goal, the defender deflecting in a shot from Idrissa Gueye, handed Senegal the lead in the 37th minute. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Sorry, Cristiano! Pjanic is Juventus’ most important player right now Arsenal would be selling their soul with Mourinho move Senegal doubled their lead when M’Baye Niang took advantage of a mix-up between Grzegorz Krychowiak and Wojciech Szczesny to finish with ease.Adam Nawalka’s side set up an exciting finish when Krychowiak somewhat made amends for his error by heading home a Kamil Grosicki free-kick, but they could not find a late leveller.Poland will need to make amends when they take on Colombia – who surprisingly lost to Japan on Tuesday – while Senegal have qualification for the next phase in their sights.1 – Thiago Cionek is the first Polish player to score an own goal at a World Cup tournament. Unfortunate. #POLSEN #WorldCup pic.twitter.com/DVQ3YoxJIj— OptaJean (@OptaJean) June 19, 2018A slow start at Spartak Stadium saw neither side gain control of the midfield until Senegal had the first clear chance in the 18th minute, Niang dragging a poor effort wide after a break.The African side – who shocked France on their World Cup bow in 2002, their only previous appearance – gradually started to dominate but the opening goal had a large slice of good fortune.Patient passing produced an opportunity for Gueye, albeit his 20-yard strike took a huge deflection off Cionek to wrong-foot Poland goalkeeper Szczesny.Nawalka sent on Southampton defender Jan Bednarek at half-time – Jakub Blaszczykowski making way on his 100th international appearance – as Cionek’s own goal ensured Poland’s 32-year wait for a clean sheet at the World Cup goes on.Cionek’s own-goal means that we have had a goal in each of the 16 opening fixtures of the 2018 FIFA #WorldCup #POLSEN pic.twitter.com/6Ortr7XtIt— FIFA World Cup  (@FIFAWorldCup) June 19, 2018Poland captain Robert Lewandowski was Europe’s top scorer in qualifying with 16 goals but when he stepped up to float a 25-yard free-kick over the wall, Khadim N’Diaye acrobatically dived to turn the ball away.A much-improved Poland continued to threaten and Lukasz Piszczek should have hit the target with a volley at the back post from a deep right-wing centre from Maciej Rybus.But while the Senegal first was unlucky for Poland, they were architects of their own downfall for the decisive second, handing Niang his first international goal on the hour mark.Krychowiak needlessly hooked a high ball back towards his own goal from inside the Senegal half and with Szczesny attempting to intercept by coming out of his penalty area, Niang gleefully knocked the ball into an unguarded goal.1 – M’Baye Niang has scored his first-ever goal for Senegal. It was also his first shot on target at a World Cup. Unlocked. #SEN #SENPOL pic.twitter.com/aibdLRMU0H— OptaPaolo (@OptaPaolo) June 19, 2018Arkadiusz Milik should have got Poland back in the game but he slotted a perfect Piszczek cross wide at the near post.Dawid Kownacki’s headed attempt was easily saved late on by N’Diaye but the goalkeeper was beaten by Krychowiak’s well-placed header with five minutes to go.Yet Senegal held on to their advantage in a nervy finish, leaving the Euro 2016 quarter-finalists with plenty to do if they are to qualify from a suddenly wide-open group. Key Opta Stats:- Senegal have won 50 per cent of their World Cup matches (3/6), the best win rate of any African nation.- Poland have failed to keep a clean sheet in each of their last nine World Cup matches, since beating Portugal 1-0 in 1986.- Grzegorz Krychowiak scored Poland’s first goal at a World Cup since 2006, when Bartosz Bosacki scored twice against Costa Rica.- Thiago Cionek’s own goal was the only second time an African nation has benefited from an own goal in a World Cup match, after Andoni Zubizarreta for Spain against Nigeria in 1998.- M’Baye Niang’s goal was his first ever for Senegal, scored with his first shot on target in a World Cup match. read morelast_img read more

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PHOTOGRAPHS FROM NTL

first_imgPlease note that all photographs are taken by Sporting Images and that the action shots taken at the Seniors, Opens and 20’s NTL have been uploaded onto their website and can be viewed and bought online. The link is www.sportingimages.com.au For an example of the shots taken please use the ‘gallery’ link on the ATA homepage and go to 2005 NTL.last_img

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SIXTY SECONDS IN TOUCH

first_imgWelcome to another edition of Sixty Seconds in Touch, where we have a new area of the website specifically devoted to the weekly column…you can read Sixty Seconds in Touch either in the news section on the front page, or you can scroll through previous editions of the column by clicking on the ‘Sixty Seconds in Touch’ logo on the front left hand side of the page. Click here to read all the Touch news from around Australia…TFA have launched their re-vamped website! If you have a scroll through the pages you’ll see there’s some areas we’re still working on, but we’re keen to get people using the new site and navigating it before the upcoming NTL. Some of the new additions to the site include front page news that scrolls through the most recent articles, updated links to state and local associations, a ‘Where to Play’ map that allows you to search for your local competition and links to tournaments such as the NTL on the homepage, making it easier than ever for everyone to have access to the NTL news and stories. We’ve also updated the My Club Touch site, making it easier to navigate and access. There’s a big and bold link on the front page and the info on the site has been cleaned up, so that the most relevant and important info is easy to access. We’re still updating the My Club Touch site, so keep checking over the coming days. Make sure you join the TFA tipping competition, it’s a chance to tip the AFL and NRL results against your Touch mates Australia-wide and we’ll be announcing the prize that’s up for grabs soon. The TFA shop has also been upgraded, with so many items available for purchase we’ll be working on the shop for the rest of this week. Make sure you check it out next week though when we’re open for business! In the mean time, if you’re in need of some merchandise call Rachel on 1800 654 951The Australian Mens 30’s side is set to hit Sydney for the 2006 Australian Sports Awards. Representatives of the team will be attending the dinner and awards ceremony, where they are one of the three finalists in the Australian Masters Team of the Year award. Tune in to the awards on Wednesday night on SBS at 10:00pm or check out the TFA website the following day, we’ll be giving a full wrap of the awards and how our Mens 30’s fared. Congratulations again guys and good luck! TFA welcomes ACT junior and Womens Open representative Sarah Kiermaier to the office…Sarah has come on board part time to help out with the database entry of Touch players Australia-wide. With the sport growing constantly in numbers she certainly has her work cut out for her!The NSW Junior State Cup was blessed with warm conditions (in contrast to the wild storms at the 2005 event), with 277 teams playing a total of 777 games over the two days of the event. Check out the front page of our website and also www.nswtouch.com.au for all of the stories and results from the event.If you’re keen to keep in touch with the regular TFA newsletters and other important info and stories, simply enter your name and email address on the ‘Subscribe’ section on the front of the website. News from WA is that Rosalie Touch are going to huge lengths in their fundraising for the upcoming WA State Titles…they are offering their Womens Open side for purchase on E-bay! The Rosalie women are no doubt to keep their ownership within Australia, so check out the site, get bidding and support the Rosalie Womens Open side in their quest for a State title. ROSALIE OPEN WOMEN ON E-BAY Touch SA have a new website…www.touchsa.com.au check it out for all the news from Touch in South AustraliaThe NTL draft draw will be out soon, with Tournament Director Jon Pratt set to release the draft any day now…keep an eye on the website for all the news. Rachel and Lisa have started work on the March edition of Touch-e-Talk, TFA’s online monthly newsletter. It will be a huge edition, with the NTL receiving special treatment and a preview to the 2006 event sure to be interesting. Remember if you have an event you would like added to the TFA calendar or some info you would like shared in the weekly Sixty Seconds in Touch column, please let Rachel know on media@austouch.com.au The NTL program goes into production this week…this is the last chance to book some advertising space, please contact Rachel on media@austouch.com.au if you’re interested.last_img read more

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10 months agoReal Madrid captain Ramos hits out at Mourinho rumours

first_imgAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your say Real Madrid captain Ramos hits out at Mourinho rumoursby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveReal Madrid captain Sergio Ramos has hit out at talk of Jose Mourinho replacing coach Santiago Solari.Ramos was in no mood to entertain reporters questions on the Portuguese.”I’m nobody to decide who the Real Madrid coach is,” he said.”We’ve been without Mourinho for five years and you’re still talking about him.”We have the chance to win a title and we’re talking about Mourinho.”A captain doesn’t decide the coaches.” last_img

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10 months agoAC Milan chief Leonardo insists Gattuso safe

first_imgAC Milan chief Leonardo insists Gattuso safeby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveAC Milan technical director Leonardo insists coach Rino Gattuso is safe.There’s been claims Gattuso could be sacked if they fail to beat SPAL.“We never thought about changing Gattuso,” Leonardo said yesterday.“We can deny this general situation. Milan started in a hurry this year, and we’re trying to fix a situation which started that way.“We’re in the running for our objective, which is to finish in the top four. Right now we’re there, and the pessimism Rino talks about is in relation to a moving car that needs fixed.“The owners know the situation, and we need everyone to cooperate and unite.“We need a bit of understand to fix this situation, we’re not going to buy 10 players and suddenly fix everything.“There is no plan to change Gattuso, and Milan have not contacted anyone else.” TagsTransfersAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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a month agoBurnley defender Pieters: Norwich tactics helped us

first_imgAbout the authorAnsser SadiqShare the loveHave your say Burnley defender Pieters: Norwich tactics helped usby Ansser Sadiqa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveBurnley defender Erik Pieters says Norwich City’s tactics helped his side secure a 2-0 victory at Turf Moor on Saturday.A double from Chris Wood saw Sean Dyche’s clinch a comfortable victory in front of their supporters.Pieters believes Norwich penchant for playing out from the back allowed the Clarets to press high up the pitch and capitalise on mistakes.The Dutchman said: “The way they play and how they beat City playing out from the back helped us.”We pressed them 100 per cent, we didn’t give them any time, so it helped us win the ball and score our goals. I think they helped us.” last_img

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14 days agoWolves Europa League tie Slovan Bratislava to feature 5,000 strong crowd

first_imgWolves Europa League tie Slovan Bratislava to feature 5,000 strong crowdby Paul Vegas14 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveA 5,000 strong crowd is likely to attend Wolves’ Europa League match away to Slovan Bratislava on 24 October – even though it is officially being played behind closed doors.Uefa sanctioned the Slovak champions after fans made racist chants in a play-off game against PAOK of Greece.But Uefa rules will allow accompanied children aged 14 and under to attend.In addition, 200 Wolves fans will be allowed in to see the game, providing they hold ‘category one tickets’.Uefa ruled in August that Slovan must play their next two European games behind closed doors as a consequence of racist behaviour by their supporters at a play-off match against Greek side POAK Salonika. About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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Athlon Sports Names The 10 Most Explosive Running Backs Returning For 2016

first_imgAthlon Sports released a list Sunday morning of what it believes to be the 10 most explosive running backs returning for the 2016 college football season. Some of the names on the list won’t surprise you at all, but others undoubtedly will. College football’s 10 most explosive running backs returning for 2016. https://t.co/llw8KRXZTM pic.twitter.com/XwwX1MSv6S— Athlon Sports (@AthlonSports) June 12, 2016Here’s the list they came up with. Georgia Southern’s Matt BreidaFlorida State’s Dalvin CookLSU’s Leonard FournetteNew Mexico State’s Larry RoseSan Diego State’s Donald PumphreyBoise State’s Jeremy McNicholsWestern Michigan’s Jamauri BoganSouthern Mississippi’s Ito SmithNevada’s James ButlerIowa State’s Mike WarrenAthlon adds an excellent chart to explain their decisions and you can find that here.What do you think, college football fans? Are they forgetting anybody?last_img read more

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Michigan Football’s New Air Jordan Jerseys May Have Leaked

first_imgMichigan shows off new jerseys for 2016 season.@jharkelroad1Michigan’s football program is set to unveil its new Air Jordan jerseys next week.The Wolverines, who signed a $173 million deal with Nike that runs through 2027, officially become a Nike school on Aug. 1. Jim Harbaugh’s team is set to reveal their new Jumpman-brand jerseys (they’ll be the first college football team to wear the logo) at a special ceremony on Tuesday in Detroit.It looks like a picture of the jerseys might have leaked early, though.Check out this photo:@mgoblog @michiganinsider @umichWD @SamWebb77 pic.twitter.com/NzWfGbhPVn— Justin E Harkelroad (@jharkelroad1) July 29, 2016This photo of the jerseys hasn’t been confirmed, but they certainly look like they could be Michigan’s new Jumpman jerseys. The uniforms aren’t expected to change much, save for the addition of the classic Air Jordan logo.If these are the new jerseys, what do you think, Michigan fans?The Wolverines open their 2016 season Sept. 3 against Hawaii.last_img read more

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Barcelona turn it on late to slip past Leganes

first_imgLionel Messi played an important role off the bench with an assist for Luis Suarez before scoring himself as Barcelona secured a 3-1 win over Leganes at Camp Nou.Ernesto Valverde’s decision to rest Messi almost backfired after Martin Braithwaite cancelled out a goal from Ousmane Dembele, who was later forced off injured, but the Argentinian came off the bench to inspire Suarez’s goal and then rounded out proceedings.Dembele was almost unplayable right from the start and it came as no surprise to see him find the breakthrough with a tidy finish just after the half-hour mark. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? The France international was unfortunately replaced due to a suspected hamstring problem shortly after Braithwaite made the scores level, but Suarez put Barca back in front in the 71st minute after Messi’s shot had been saved, and their main man made sure the five-point gap to second-place Atletico Madrid was restored.The lively Dembele was crucial when Barca’s dominance finally resulted in a chance in the 31st minute, the forward feeding Suarez, who prodded into the side-netting from an acute angle.But Leganes were not so lucky just over 60 seconds later.Gerard Pique found Dembele after a charging run up the right flank and the winger darted inside, offloaded to Jordi Alba, before then steering the Spaniard’s cut-back in off the right-hand post from 12 yards.Despite Barca’s control, Leganes levelled out of nowhere in the 57th minute – Braithwaite slamming home from close range after an excellent run and cross from the right by Youssef En-Nesyri, adding to his goal against Real Madrid on Wednesday.Messi was introduced shortly after and, although they lost Dembele to an innocuous-looking injury, Barca powered to victory.Their talisman’s long-range strike was saved by Ivan Cuellar, but Suarez bundled in – catching the goalkeeper in the process – to secure the points, despite a lengthy VAR delay.Messi then completed the scoring in the second minute of stoppage time, emphatically firing home with his right foot from the centre of the box after receiving Alba’s pass.On  @Dembouz now has a CAREER-BEST 13 goals this season, across all competitions! Keep the fireballs comin’ Ousmane!  pic.twitter.com/HxGV4MW9Nh— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) January 20, 2019What does it mean? Luck not on Dembele’s sideIt is fair to say things have not always gone to plan for Dembele so far at Barca. Injuries, reservations about his attitude and questionable timekeeping, mean he has attracted headlines. But his goal on Sunday was his 13th of the season, making it his most productive campaign as a professional, only to then suffer another injury.Ous the man?Dembele looked really up for this contest right from the off, completing mazy runs that otherwise looked impossible to pull off. His final pass was a little wayward early on, but he got the fans off their seats and scored a deserved goal with a fine finish.Coutinho fails to grasp his opportunityPhilippe Coutinho is having a difficult season. Handed only his third start in LaLiga since early November, he saw plenty of the ball but did not make much of an impact in the final third.Key Opta Facts:- Ousmane Dembele has scored 13 goals for Barcelona this season in all competitions, his best goal tally in a single season (12 goals for Rennes in 2015-16).- Luis Suarez has scored 15-plus goals in each of his last seven league seasons (five for Barcelona in LaLiga and two for Liverpool in the Premier League). – Barcelona’s Lionel Messi has scored 22 La Liga goals as a substitute, more than any other player in the 21st century. – Dembele completed 11 dribbles against Leganes (15 dribbles attempted), the most by a player in a LaLiga game this season. – Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde has won a La Liga managerial game against Leganes’ Mauricio Pellegrino for the first time (D1 L2). 15 – Luis Suarez has scored 15+ goals in each of his last seven league seasons (five for @FCBarcelona in @LaLigaEN and two for Liverpool in the Premier League). Predatory. pic.twitter.com/UpGIyihlPq— OptaJose (@OptaJose) January 20, 2019What’s next?Barca face a trip to Sevilla in the Copa del Rey on Wednesday, before returning to LaLiga action in a Catalan derby at Girona four days later. Leganes host Eibar in the league on Saturday. read morelast_img read more

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ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt Thinks These 10 Teams Have The Best Shot At The Playoff

first_imgScott Van Pelt talks about the College Football Playoff.ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt thinks that these 10 teams have the best shot at reaching the College Football Playoff later this year.While there are certainly a number of crazy scenarios that could produce some unlikely College Football Playoff participants, it’s safe to say that there are really only about 10 teams that have decent chances at playing in the competition later this year. ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt broke it down last night for his “1 Big Thing” on his nightly show.Van Pelt believes that Alabama, Clemson, Louisville, Washington, Oklahoma West Virginia, Ohio State, Michigan, Penn State and Michigan are the teams with realistic chances. He also expressed his desire to see the event include more teams in the future. Are there any other teams Van Pelt is missing? Maybe Washington State or Oklahoma State?last_img read more

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Pogba plea shows Man Utd is no place for superstars

first_imgIf Paul Pogba gets his way, then he will not be at Manchester United by the time the new season kicks off. And that in turn could have devastating consequences for the club’s ability to attract top talents going forward.Pogba is far and away United’s most talented and best-performing player – by any metric – but in many quarters has been made the scapegoat for their failures under Jose Mourinho and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.At the heart of it, United simply haven’t got players alongside Pogba that are of comparable worth. Alexis Sanchez, the highest earner in the Premier League, is the embodiment of wasted talent with just five goals in 45 games since his arrival in January 2018. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? But instead of pointing the fingers of blame at the rest of the squad, or to the recruitment department where the problem really lies, fans are minded to turn their ire towards Pogba, a world-class player who is already doing more than his fair share of heavy lifting. He supplied more goals and assists than any other United player last season and, despite the consistency in his output, was regularly slated from the sidelines.This is a World Cup winner, as well as a multiple Serie A winner with Juventus, whose effort and ability are undermined at the drop of a hat. The truth of the matter is that the Pogba return to United has been a bad match since the very beginning. Quite what kind of player Mourinho thought he was getting in 2016 never tallied with what Pogba could actually do.He has been shifted around the midfield – in positions that do not always adequately showcase his best characteristics – and been forced to deal with the critics when things go wrong.It’s clear that there were problems with Mourinho. From the moment last April when Pep Guardiola revealed he had been offered Pogba’s services by agent Mino Raiola, it has been apparent that the truce between player and club has not always been easy. Then followed Pogba’s much-publicised transfer saga last summer when it emerged that the Frenchman was determined to push through a move to Barcelona. That didn’t come off, but history is repeating.Sponsored or corporate media opportunities are usually bland affairs, where players and clubs go out of their way to ensure nothing remotely interesting is said. What Pogba did in Tokyo on Sunday is unprecedented. To turn an end-of-season commercial tour into a press conference, featuring a publicly-declared desire to change clubs – with Real Madrid or a return to Juve the likely destination – demonstrates the gravity of the situation facing Manchester United.Pogba is hoping to facilitate his departure by putting it out there that he will be the one to instigate the move. At this stage of his career, having just turned 26, Pogba cannot easily face the prospect of remaining under contract at United until 2022. His current deal expires in 2021 but United hold the option to renew for a further season.Paul Pogba Manchester United 2018-19United right now are going nowhere, have a squad of uneven quality, and a coach of little or no pedigree. They are directionless, no place for a player of Pogba’s class.Manchester United for a long time rightly regarded themselves as a club right at the highest levels. They made big signings under Sir Alex Ferguson, players like Juan Sebastian Veron, Rio Ferdinand and Dimitar Berbatov, but none of those had to deal with the same kind of expectation that Pogba has.When United spent big, it was usually for one player who could slot in and improve what was already there. But there isn’t the baseline quality in the team these days, which means Pogba is a fish out of water.This is not the NBA, where one major acquisition can make the difference like Kawhi Leonard for the Toronto Raptors. A superstar is always going to have trouble standing out in ordinary teams. And that is one reason why those players linked to Manchester United this summer – such as Matthijs de Ligt and Christian Eriksen – may well be reluctant to commit.For United to build a team of players on Pogba’s level would take an outlay of about £1 billion based on current transfer market trends. One or two players of that class – without an equally-talented squad around them – would find it extremely difficult to make the difference but would still find themselves blamed for failing to imbue the team around them with a higher standard of play.United need to embark on a recruitment drive but it will take more than one or two superstars – on wages to match – in order for them to get to the next level. And what the Pogba saga proves is that world-class players have nothing to gain but everything to lose by going there. Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

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Neymar wishes Messi happy birthday amid Barca rumours

first_imgNeymar has wished Lionel Messi a happy birthday on social media amid growing rumours the Brazil superstar will return to Barcelona.Paris Saint-Germain are reportedly willing to sell Neymar with president Nasser Al-Khelaifi warning in a rare interview that the Ligue 1 champions will no longer tolerate “celebrity behaviour” in what was widely speculated to be a barb at the 27-year-old.Real Madrid have long been linked with the forward but their capture of Eden Hazard from Chelsea, coupled with a spending spree that has seen Luka Jovic, Eder Militao and Ferland Mendy join, may scupper a switch to the Santiago Bernabeu. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Barca are reportedly considering bringing Neymar back to the club with talisman Messi said to be among those pushing for the deal to happen.And on the Barca captain’s 32nd birthday, Neymar posted a message to his former team-mate on social media.”Happy birthday, brother,” Neymar wrote on his Instagram Story. “May God bless you always.””Happy birthday, brother. May God bless you always.”Awww isn’t that lovely? Neymar shared the birthday love for his ex-Barcelona team-mate Lionel Messi… Will there be a Camp Nou reunion for the star forwards next season?   pic.twitter.com/kf0pGokPgD — Omnisport (@OmnisportNews) June 24, 2019 Brazil team-mates Philippe Coutinho and Arthur have said they want Neymar, ruled out of the ongoing Copa America by an ankle injury, to return to Barcelona.But a Monday report in UK newspaper the Independent claimed Neymar has been offered to Manchester United.According to the report, PSG were keen to discuss a potential swap deal involving Paul Pogba, but the Premier League club were not interested.Al-Khelaifi’s condemnation of “celebrity behaviour” came after Neymar was given a three-match ban for punching a fan following PSG’s Coupe de France final defeat to Rennes. The Brazil star has also since been interviewed by police after he was accused of rape by 26-year-old Najila Trindade.Neymar has been at PSG since 2017, having reportedly moved away from Camp Nou in order to be the main forward at a club – a ploy he believed would increase his chances of winning the Ballon d’Or.last_img read more

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Inside PSV’s youth academy revolution

first_imgFrom signing hot prospect Ronaldo in 1994 to developing the raw talent of Memphis Depay for his move to Manchester United, Goal ventures inside PSV’s youth academy and exclusively talks to those behind this revolution.Featuring exclusive interviews with Mark van Bommel, Ruud van Nistelrooy, Steven Bergwijn and Mohammed Ihattaren.last_img

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Report: Alabama’s Nick Saban, Jalen Hurts Have New “Agreement”

first_imgJalen Hurts of the Alabama Crimson Tide and head coach Nick Saban celebrate thier win after the AllState Sugar Bowl against the Clemson Tigers.NEW ORLEANS, LA – JANUARY 01: Jalen Hurts #2 of the Alabama Crimson Tide and head coach Nick Saban celebrate thier win after the AllState Sugar Bowl against the Clemson Tigers at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on January 1, 2018 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)Alabama entered the 2018 college football season as the No. 1 team in the nation. After one game, the Crimson Tide still hold the title of America’s best college football team among coaches and Associated Press members.Louisville couldn’t do anything to slow down the Tide during Week 1, though there were plenty of story-lines from the game – namely among Alabama’s quarterbacks. Tua Tagovailoa got the majority of snaps and looked like a Heisman Trophy candidate.Where does that leave Jalen Hurts? Well, according to a new report, Hurts and Nick Saban have come to an agreement that will preserve some of the quarterback’s eligibility.According to Aaron Suttles of the Athletic, Hurts will redshirt unless Tua gets injured.Our own @AaronSuttles tells us expect Jalen Hurts to be redshirted this season unless Tua is injured. @3ManFront pic.twitter.com/xthD6kKr8P— Pat Smith (@patsmithradio) September 7, 2018As per the NCAA’s new rules for the 2018 season, Hurts must play in four or fewer games to retain his redshirt. After seeing action against Louisville last weekend, Hurts has three games remaining.The national title-winning quarterback graduates in December and can transfer to play for another program.last_img read more

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Texas’ Bowl Situation After The Kansas Win

first_imgSam Ehlinger of Texas attempts to throw a passDALLAS, TX – OCTOBER 06: Sam Ehlinger #11 of the Texas Longhorns during the 2018 AT&T Red River Showdown at Cotton Bowl on October 6, 2018 in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)Texas football clinched a spot in the Big 12 Championship Game with its win over Kansas today. This season has been a solid step forward for Tom Herman’s program.Texas is 9-3, and handed Oklahoma its only loss of the season thus far, and fell by just one point to West Virginia. It will face the winner of tonight’s big OU-WVU game in the Big 12 title game next week.THE HORNS ARE BIG 12 CHAMPIONSHIP BOUND!!!? https://t.co/DLT27Dnxaj#ThisIsTexas #HookEm pic.twitter.com/7YvVLTZqul— Texas Football (@TexasFootball) November 23, 2018The three losses preclude Texas from getting into the College Football Playoff picture. The Longhorns are still looking at a nice bowl appearance though.Texas football’s bowl game will largely depend on what happens in that Big 12 title game.A few weeks ago, virtually every projection had Texas in the nearby Alamo Bowl. Now, those are much more varied.If Texas wins the Big 12, a New Year’s Six bowl is on the docket.ESPN‘s Mitch Sherman has the Longhorns facing LSU in the Fiesta Bowl. The Orlando Sentinel has the same destination, but with Florida lining up across the ball.Sports Illustrated has Texas heading to a different New Year’s Six game with a Big 12 championship win: the Sugar Bowl vs. Georgia.With a loss to Oklahoma or West Virginia, the Alamo Bowl remains a strong possibility for UT. The Dallas Morning-News broke down virtually every major projection for Texas ahead of today’s win over Kansas (which was assumed), and also found the Peach Bowl and Camping World Bowl being thrown out as options.last_img read more

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ESPN’s 2nd Half Prediction For Alabama-Georgia

first_imgalabama and georgia play in the sec championship gameATLANTA, GA – DECEMBER 01: Tua Tagovailoa #13 of the Alabama Crimson Tide looks to pass in the first half against the Georgia Bulldogs during the 2018 SEC Championship Game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on December 1, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)Alabama and Georgia are now two quarters into their SEC Championship Game in Atlanta, Ga. It’s been quite the first half for the Crimson Tide and the Bulldogs.Surprisingly, Georgia has looked like the better team through two quarters. The Bulldogs are doing everything they can to secure a College Football Playoff berth.It’s Georgia 21, Alabama 14 at halftime.Georgia, even with a loss, could end up in the College Football Playoff’s final four. ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit certainly thinks that should be the case.What’s in store for the second half?ESPN has updated its prediction.ESPN’s Football Power Index is giving No. 4 Georgia a 67.5 percent chance of winning this game, giving No. 1 Alabama just a 32.5 percent chance of pulling out a comeback victory in the second half.What’s your prediction for the second half of Alabama-Georgia?The second half of Alabama-Georgia should begin in about 10 minutes. The game is being televised on CBS.last_img read more

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Halftime Performer Reportedly Decided For Alabama-Oklahoma Game

first_imgBen Boulware of the Clemson Tigers and Deshaun Watson #4 celebrate after the Clemson Tigers defeat the Oklahoma Sooners.MIAMI GARDENS, FL – DECEMBER 31: Ben Boulware #10 of the Clemson Tigers and Deshaun Watson #4 celebrate after the Clemson Tigers defeat the Oklahoma Sooners with a score of 37 to 17 to win the 2015 Capital One Orange Bowl at Sun Life Stadium on December 31, 2015 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)The Alabama-Oklahoma matchup in the Orange Bowl was already primed to be one of the best college football games of the year. But it seems that the game just got the cherry on top if rumors of the halftime performer are true.According to AP writer Tim Reynolds, Flo Rida will be performing in the halftime show for the Orange Bowl.Flo Rida was born and raised in Carol City, Florida, only a few blocks away from Hard Rock Stadium, the venue for the Orange Bowl.The multi-time Grammy Award nominated rapper performed at Hard Rock Stadium for the first time earlier this year for a Miami Dolphins game. The performance was also his first football halftime show.Welcome to His House. And Whistle.Sources: Alabama-Oklahoma matchup in the Orange Bowl halftime show will be none other than the man himself — @official_flo.— Tim Reynolds (@ByTimReynolds) December 19, 2018The stadium seated over 80,000 people when it hosted the BCS National Championship Game in 2013, and could be just as full for the Orange Bowl.If Flo Rida is indeed the performer, it might be one of the largest audiences he’s ever performed live for.The first ever Alabama-Oklahoma meeting took place in the 1963 Orange Bowl at the former Miami Orange Bowl stadium. Alabama won that game, 17-0, making it the only time the Crimson Tide have ever beaten the Sooners.last_img read more

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Major Program Is Off To Disastrous Start In Today’s Bowl Game

first_imgA detail of a Nike official NCAA size football as it sits in the end zone while the West Virginia Mountaineers stretchon the field prior to playing against the Clemson Tigers during the Discover Orange Bowl at Sun Life Stadium.(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)On Friday afternoon, the Purdue Boilermakers took the field for a contest against the Auburn Tigers in the Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl. So far, it’s been all Tigers as Auburn has dominated on both sides of the ball.After just eight minutes of play, the Tigers hold a 21-0 advantage over the Boilermakers. The stats for today’s game reflect the score.With just under seven minutes left to play here’s what the stat line looks like for both programs:Auburn – 180 yardsPurdue – 31 yardsThe Boilermakers got off to about as bad a start as possible this afternoon with Auburn’s latest touchdown coming after a David Blough interception.Freshman sensation Rondale Moore has been quiet for the Boilermakers after coming into the game with 105 catches for 1171 yards and over 170 all-purpose yards per game – good for fourth in the nation.Can Purdue vault a comeback or will SEC fans have bragging rights over the Big Ten?last_img read more

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