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Dynamite Diego Costa in heaven with Cesc Fabregas, claims Jose Mourinho

first_img Rik Sharma Diego Costa is in dynamite form for Chelsea, with seven goals in four Premier League games, and a key component in that is Cesc Fabregas. Manager Jose Mourinho said that Costa, who scored a hat-trick on Saturday as Chelsea beat Swansea 4-2, was loving the service from Fabregas.  CEST When asked about his creativity, Fabregas said: “I’m just trying to do my job. That’s it. “We have a good team, strong, young, with a lot of courage. We showed it again.” Chelsea bought the Barcelona star this summer, along with the Atletico Madrid striker, and the pair are already working wonders in west London, with the Blues top of the league with a 100 per cent record. center_img “The guy sees the movement, sees the pass, is not selfish, makes always the right choice.” “To play with Fabregas is the dream of every striker,” Mourinho told Chelsea TV. 14/09/2014 Upd. at 21:45 Chelsea’s next game is in the Champions League on Wednesday night, when Schalke 04 visit Stamford Bridge, before next Sunday’s showdown against Manchester City at the Etihad.last_img read more

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10 Clasico factors that could be crucial in Madrid v Barça

first_img1. Full attention to the right flank Pichi Alonso You don’t have to be very shrewd to note the Santiago Bernabeu will be a pressure cooker. Los Blancos’ stadium will be packed to the rafters and they will be targeting Gerard Pique. The defender must be careful at all times and temper himself if provoked.  Only the splendid season Keylor Navas has had has prevented greater problems befalling Rafa Benitez. Madrid’s star man this season has been the Costa Rican goalkeeper – even though the defensive stats are good, it’s largely down to the stopper doing his job. However, he may not be fit to to play the game. Upd. at 19:57 18/11/2015 6. Real Madrid’s internal conflicts From the time of Pep Guardiola and Tito Vilanova, the coaching staff has stressed an important detail against Real Madrid – losing the ball is always bad, but doing it in midfield against an opponent like this will be lethal. Any errors will allow Kroos and Modric to feed the attackers, who are more comfortable counter attacking than against static defences. It’s not impossible Madrid will let Barcelona have more of the ball so they can sting them like this. We’ve already spoken about Alves v Marcelo, but at the other end Neymar v Danilo will also be crucial. Iniesta and Modric are required to bring the best out of their respective teams too. And a third duel may be key – Luis Suarez v Sergio Ramos. Sparks will fly. It’s been a problem for the club for a while. Last season Real Madrid took advantage, with Marcelo giving Dani Alves a torrid time. His continuous bursts forward are dangerous, especially when he works with Cristiano Ronaldo and others. Alves needs assistance. 5. Gerard Pique in a hostile environment 10. Pay attention to the counter-attacks 9. Direct duels to tip the balancecenter_img CET 3. Total concentration at set pieces 7. Much to win and little to lose at Barcelona We’re in mid-November and about a third of the season through. But Clasicos are more than just games with three points at stake. Their form is mixed and their style has not convinced the fans. There is three points between the sides and a Madrid defeat would open up these wounds. And if that were not enough, the dressing room has also seen friction between the players and their coach Rafa Benitez. Including multiple interviews given by Cristiano Ronaldo that have provoked speculation he will leave. In short, not the best environment with which to approach a Clasico. 8. The MSN is in good shape, the BBC in crisis 2. Control and precision Apart from injury worries, both Barcelona and Madrid’s attacks are very clear. Neymar and Luis Suarez are in brutal form. Both have been working hard to reduce the impact of Messi’s absence. But the BBC cannot hold its head high. Cristiano has found it hard to score (he has drawn nine blanks in 15 games), Bale is still not loved by the fans and Karim Benzema has off-the-field problems as well as injuries.  4. Keylor Navas stops the bleeding Following the same line, Barcelona are enjoying a peaceful spell. To go to the Bernabeu with a three point cushion and little trouble, will allow them to look at the game from the best of perspectives. It’s possible the FIFA virus could still have an effect – minimised by Spain’s game vs Belgium being cancelled – and Messi’s injury seems to be healing too. Barcelona usually play well when all at the club is settled, and this is an ideal time for a Clasico for them.  Two pieces of information are interesting. Firstly, Barcelona have recovered their dominance of the central midfield areas in recent games. They set the pace, suffer less in defence and create more danger in attack. Secondly, Real Madrid have suffered in this area. Casemiro aside, the other midfielders are not battlers and their pressing in midfield leaves a lot to be desired. Old errors have come back to hurt Barcelona this season. Corners and free kicks in wide areas have been problematic. Furthermore, Madrid are always strong from these positions. Sergio Ramos, Varane, Cristiano Ronaldo and Co know how to capitalise on Barcelona mistakes. last_img read more

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Neville wil rotate against Barça with Espanyol in mind

first_img Sam Marsden And he says the threat of the drop is not on his mind: “I’m not even considering relegation. I am sure we will turn results around and start to win football matches.” “I must prioritise Saturday’s game. [Fran] Villalba will have an opportunity tomorrow, with two other youngsters.” “I understand your question, but I cannot share any conversations with anyone from the club – sporting director, owner or president,” he added.  It’s for that reason that the English coach wants to prioritise the Espanyol game, especially given the Barcelona-based side themselves are in really poor form.  “They’re private. No coach would share them, it wouldn’t be fair. But I speak a lot with them, obviously.” Valencia are on a 12-game winless run in La Liga and welcome Barça to Mestalla already trailing by seven goals in their Copa del Rey semi-final. The former Manchester United full-back only took over Valencia in December, but with the threat of relegation now lingering, there are already questions over his job.  “[On Wednesday] we must have a positive mentality, we must put in a huge effort, and play, and battle – but Saturday’s game against Espanyol is fundamental and that must be taken into account when picking the team.  “Last week was unacceptable, I take responsibility for that,” Neville said with regards to the first leg against Barça at Camp Nou.  CET However, despite probing from local journalists, he wouldn’t reveal any talks he’s had with the club’s hierarchy regarding his future. Upd. at 13:55 Gary Neville says he will rotate his Valencia squad for Wednesday’s game against Barcelona, instead preferring to focus on Saturday’s vital clash with Espanyol.  09/02/2016last_img read more

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Maradona’s controversial Whatsapp audio message

first_img Because do you know why? We, with every moment that passes, are greater. Because we went and we played our balls off in the Azteca stadium.  I had to be national team coach for them to give me a place. But everyone else… remember Cucciufo (who passed away in 2004)… if Kun Aguero even knows where he was from. Or where Pumpido played. Lads, what ‘Burru’ said is the most sensible thing I have heard up to now. And if there is a division, we say there is, and the captain backs it up. For the respect of all, lads. For our respect.  The transcript of the message is displayed here, in which Maradona calls himself “your captain”. Sport EN Upd. on 22/11/2016 at 03:06 CET Diego Armando Maradona has again caused controversy.  In the voice message to his former teammates, which lasts just under two minutes, Diego makes a thinly-veiled criticism of the current Argentina squad. “Lads, lads, Diego Maradona is talking…your captain. And I believe that what Burruchaga is saying is what we should be do. Shut our mouths because they have never had us in mind. We didn’t go and play against Chile. We went and beat (West) Germany. Do you understand the difference I’m telling you between one team and the other? A hug for all… Your captain.” Absent in the commemoration that the Argentine parliament celebrated for the 30th anniversary of the World Cup win of 1986, Maradona posted a message in the Whatsapp group that the group of players have between them. 29/06/2016last_img read more

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Mónaco sign Mbappé’s replacement

first_imgMonaco have reacted quickly to the transfer of Kylian Mbappé to Paris Saint Germain and have already announced Mbappé’s replacement, just hours after his move was announced. Stevan Jovetic will wear the number 10 shirt after an €11 million transfer. 28/08/2017 El Mónaco ficha al sustituto de Mbappé Upd. at 15:52 Monaco moved quickly to cover for the loss of Mbappé. Jovetic has signed from Inter, where he was not in Luciano Spalletti plans. The player had several options – including Sevilla where he played on loan last year. RELATED STORIES PSG and Mónaco reach deal over Kylian Mbappe’s transfer IN SPORT.ES Jovetic watched Monaco thrash Marseille 6-1 on Sunday before being presented today. Sport EN CESTlast_img read more

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Neymar trouble hanging over Brazil before England friendly

first_img “We need to continue to build and not just against Brazil, but for the future.” Though Neymar has scored 11 goals in 12 games since his world-record move to Paris Saint-Germain from Barcelona, recent weeks have yielded stories of rifts with his team-mates and disagreements with coach Unai Emery. “When you are an idol, an example in the eyes of so many people, you have to be perfect and very often I am not,” Neymar said before his abrupt departure. Neymar has generally dazzled in Ligue 1 since completing his 222 million euros ($259 million) transfer from Barcelona, but his recent performances have betrayed signs of unease. 13/11/2017 England will approach the game in a positive frame of mind after an inexperienced and injury-depleted side produced an encouraging display in a 0-0 draw against Germany on Friday. He cut a fragile figure in the press conference that followed Brazil’s 3-1 win over Japan in a friendly in Lille on Friday, wiping away tears as national coach Tite spoke out in his defence and then hurriedly leaving the room. It is with a raincloud hovering above the head of their talisman Neymar that Brazil are gearing up for their final assignment of 2017 against England at Wembley on Tuesday. “I think we did well against a well-oiled machine in Germany,” said Tottenham Hotspur’s Eric Dier, who captained England against the Germans. “It just proves that he’s a man like anyone else,” Mbappe told French television channel TF1 on Sunday. He was sent off in PSG’s 2-2 draw at Marseille after being shown a second yellow card for reacting angrily to a foul by Lucas Ocampos. Although he scored (and squandered a penalty) against Japan, he was also booked for cuffing Hiroki Sakai — who, coincidentally, plays for Marseille — on the back of the head. Neymar aside, Brazil have had a little else to worry about, having finished 10 points clear in the South American qualifying tournament for next year’s World Cup following the dynamising mid-campaign appointment of Tite as coach. He has returned to Barcelona at least twice since the start of the season, twice being pictured on social media with Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, and is even reported to have asked them how they would feel if he came back for good.center_img “From the outside, he gives the impression that he’s not affected, even if there (in Lille), he let go. When you’re on the inside, he opens up to you and shows that he’s someone normal.” “He’s like us — he has two arms, two legs and one heart. He can be affected by the all the criticism he gets. Tite is expected to rotate his starting XI from the Japan game, with Neymar’s PSG colleagues Dani Alves and Marquinhos, as well as Philippe Coutinho and Diego, among the players tipped to come into the starting XI. But for PSG team-mate Kylian Mbappe, Neymar’s emotional press conference was merely a reminder that the superstar is only flesh and blood. Upd. at 13:23 There could be more debuts in the offing against Brazil after Bournemouth midfielder Lewis Cook and Liverpool forward Dominic Solanke were drafted into the squad, along with young Manchester City goalkeeper Angus Gunn. – England encouraged – AFP Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford and Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek, who is on loan at Crystal Palace, both impressed on their debuts as manager Gareth Southgate gave five players a first taste of international football. More worrying yet for PSG’s fans have been the reports emanating from Brazil that Neymar has already expressed regret about leaving Barcelona. “I am a young man of 25 with a lot to learn in football.” CETlast_img read more

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Official: Copa del Rey final to take place in Real Betis’s Benito Villamarin

first_img Real Betis’s stadium will host the event after beating out Valencia’s Mestalla, which was the alternative. FACTS sport.es 28/01/2019 Upd. on 29/01/2019 at 17:03 CET OFICIAL: El Estadio Benito Villamarín, sede de la final de la Copa del Rey 2018 / 2019 There also needed to be sufficient hotels in the city to host fans, at a reasonable distance from the stadium and price, not demanding minimum stay length or raising the price beyond that of a normal weekend rate. IN SPORT.ES It’s an unprecedentedly early decision, given the whole thing usually gets decided after the finalists are known, amid a boat load of controversy. The Spanish football federation (RFEF) have decided that the Copa del Rey final will take place at the Benito Villamarin in Seville on May 25. The RFEF wanted to make sure it had a minimum 45,000 tickets to sell, along with an emblematic space in the city between 5,000-10,000 square metres to celebrate events in a ‘festival of football’ around the game. Type of grass: natural Dimensions: 105 x 68 m Capacity: 60.721 espectadores Inauguration: 1929. Remodelado en 1982, 2000 y 2017 Architects: Antonio González Cordón, Manuel López Ruiz The Benito Villamarin has a 60,721 capacity. It was inaugurated on March 17, 1929, and recently renovated.last_img read more

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Gareth Southgate has his say on rumours linking him to Manchester United job

first_imgAdvertisement be52NBA Finals | Brooklyn VsznWingsuit rodeo📽Sindre Elth8i( IG: @_aubreyfisher @imraino ) 4cfn33Would you ever consider trying this?😱25Can your students do this? 🌚974kh1Roller skating! Powered by Firework Gareth Southgate has certainly worked magic with an underdog England squad and defied the proverb “England never win” to take 4th place at the 2018 World Cup Russia. Meanwhile he has also received a Order of the British Empire (OBE) from the British goverment for his impeccable level of service to the English football team. Here’s a new development – the man himself is rumoured to take the throne at Old Trafford.Advertisement Upon being asked about the rumour by Sky sports, the England boss said “I’m the England manager and it’s a privileged position to be in.Advertisement “We’ve had the best year for 28 years and we’ve got a [Nations League] semi-final this summer and a European Championship [in 2020] that’s predominantly at Wembley, providing we take care of business to qualify.“So, it’s a hugely exciting time with the team. I don’t think we’ve progressed as far as we can yet. I think there’s room for us to grow.​Advertisement “I think there is a lot of importance in life about enjoying what you are doing.“I am still a young coach, I’ve managed fewer than 200 matches, so, for me, it’s an honour to be in the role I’m in and I thoroughly enjoy it.” Advertisementlast_img read more

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Sarri still high on Arrizabalaga despite goalie’s Carabao Cup actions

first_imgAdvertisement 4p8f4tybNBA Finals | Brooklyn Vssi7iWingsuit rodeo📽Sindre Eniy9o2( IG: @_aubreyfisher @imraino ) gpioWould you ever consider trying this?😱75wiwCan your students do this? 🌚61kRoller skating! Powered by Firework Maurizio Sarri has made it clear that Kepa Arrizabalaga is still his number one choice as the goalkeeper for the Blues even after his Carabao Cup actions.Advertisement Sarri subbed Kepa and picked Willy Caballero for his starting XI in their victory over Tottenham on Wednesday.Advertisement During the finals of the Carabao Cup against Manchester City, Kepa sustained an injury and Sarri thought it was best to bench the Spanish goalkeeper.However, Arrizabalaga refused to be benched and insisted that he was fine which ultimately led to Chelsea’s defeat.Advertisement Kepa was later fined by the club although Sarri explained that it was a  result of miscommunication.Asked whether Kepa was still his number one, the Italian told a news conference: “Of course.“I think it was the right decision [to drop him]. Kepa made a big mistake. He paid [a fine] with the club and then he paid [with his position] with the team.“I don’t know in the next match if he will be on the pitch or not. But in the next one or two, of course.“We cannot kill him. When you are young you can make mistakes.“You need to understand very well after every mistake. For me the question is closed.” Advertisementlast_img read more

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If Gordon Strachan was still manager, he would give paedophile Adam Johnson a second…

first_imgAdvertisement 3e7xc4NBA Finals | Brooklyn Vsi7owgWingsuit rodeo📽Sindre Evyndf( IG: @_aubreyfisher @imraino ) 1vWould you ever consider trying this?😱3dCan your students do this? 🌚dq0gRoller skating! Powered by Firework Former Celtic and Scotland national team manager Gordon Strachan says he would consider signing Adam Johnson if he was still a manager.Advertisement Adam Johnson, the former England and Sunderland midfielder was convicted for indulging in sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl. Having served half of his six-year sentence, he was released from prison last week.Advertisement “I would if he’s shown genuine remorse,” Strachan said on Sky Sports show The Debate.“Then I’d say, ‘Right, let’s get on with it’.Advertisement “I would because I go back to what I believe in, that everybody deserves a second chance – and he’s done his bit.“People will think he’s done his three years but this is for life. People will say, ‘That’s that guy!’“What if we don’t allow him back in the game and his family are affected? His kids? We’ve got to think about that.”Johnson who was sacked by Sunderland after pleading guilty still remains on licence. While he has revealed that he has hopes of reviving his playing career abroad, he has limited options as most leagues which include the Chinese Super League, Major League Soccer and Australia all subject the players to thorough criminal and background checks. Advertisementlast_img read more

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