‘Ronaldo’s motivation sets him apart from Messi’

first_imgCristiano Ronaldo Ronaldo’s motivation puts him above Messi, says Roberto Carlos Joe Wright 16:59 12/29/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(7) CristianoRonaldoLionelMessi - cropped Getty Images Cristiano Ronaldo Real Madrid Lionel Messi Neymar Real Madrid v Barcelona Barcelona Primera División The iconic former left-back believes Cristiano is the world’s best because of his determination to stay a step ahead of his contemporaries Cristiano Ronaldo’s professionalism and determination set him apart from Lionel Messi and Neymar, according to Real Madrid great Roberto Carlos.The Portugal star won the Ballon d’Or for the fifth time in his career this year, having inspired Madrid to success in La Liga, the Champions League, the UEFA Super Cup, the Supercopa de Espana and the Club World Cup.Ronaldo has endured a rocky run of form in domestic competition in 2017-18, however, scoring just four times in 12 league appearances, while Messi has been pivotal in inspiring Barcelona to build a a nine-point lead at the top of the table. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player But Roberto Carlos believes Ronaldo has the edge on long-time rival Messi and Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar due to his drive to improve on a daily basis.”These days, when you talk about football, you talk about Neymar, Messi and Ronaldo,” the former full-back told Fox Sports.”Cristiano has worked to improve. When you talk about the Ballon d’Or or any other prize, it’s not just any person who votes, it’s people who know football, who follow the stats of the players and pick the best in the world. pic.twitter.com/zapVkPkpVa— Cristiano Ronaldo (@Cristiano) December 18, 2017″I watch him train every day and the way he works is exciting. He wants to improve every day.”That’s the difference with Messi. Leo is a phenomenon, we never talk about Neymar… but that side of Cristiano, of training, professionalism, focus, motivation, success… Cristiano has an advantage over all the others.”Although Ronaldo still rules the roost at the Santiago Bernabeu, Roberto Carlos has backed rising Brazil star Vinicius Junior to become a leading player in the Spanish capital.The 17-year-old signed for Madrid in May this year but is expected to stay at Flamengo until July 2019 before linking up with the European champions.”I’m not going to say that he’s ready because he’s still very young, but what Real Madrid have done, thinking about the future of the club, I think is perfect both for Real Madrid and Flamengo,” Roberto Carlos said of his compatriot.”He’s coming to Europe to learn, to accelerate the learning process as a player and as a man.”He knows playing for Real Madrid won’t be easy because the Bernabeu is very big, the fans demand a lot. To be a Real Madrid player should make him very proud and very motivated.”He has an even bigger responsibility today to improve day by day. I wish him a lot of luck because, I’m certain, he’s going to become an idol within this club.”last_img read more

Ligue 1 Team of the Season so far

first_imgLigue 1 Ligue 1 Team of the Season so far Robin Bairner 20:00 12/29/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(4) Neymar PSG Troyes Ligue 1 29112017 Getty Ligue 1 PSG Troyes Strasbourg Nice Bordeaux Metz Rennes Montpellier Guingamp Αμιάν Dijon Angers SCO Olympique Marseille Monaco Caen Lille Toulouse Saint-Étienne Olympique Lyonnais Nantes List PSG lead the table heading into the new year, but which players make our best XI for the 2017-18 season so far?last_img read more

A-League Review

first_imgSydney v Perth Glory A-League Review: Successive hat-tricks for Bobo as Sydney move eight clear Harry West 19:22 12/30/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Sydney - Cropped Getty Images Sydney v Perth Glory Adelaide United v Brisbane Roar Sydney Adelaide United Brisbane Roar Perth Glory A-League Sydney striker Bobo netted a second straight hat-trick as the A-League leaders moved eight points clear with a 6-0 hammering of Perth Glory. Bobo’s second hat-trick in as many games helped Sydney to a 6-0 demolition of Perth Glory that moved the defending champions eight points clear at the A-League summit.The leaders took full advantage of Newcastle Jets’ 2-1 defeat to Melbourne Victory 24 hours earlier as three goals in a nine-minute burst in the second half preceded Bobo taking his tally for the season to 13 to complete a resounding success.Graham Arnold’s men only led 1-0 at the break thanks to Brandon O’Neill but the tone for a one-sided second half was set as Adrian Mierzejewski – having two minutes earlier seen a goal overturned by the VAR for offside – was soon celebrating for real thanks to a deflected strike. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Milos Ninkovic then rattled the crossbar and Alex Brosque glanced in Michael Zullo’s cross before Jacob Poscoliero hauled down Bobo, who stepped up to slot home from the penalty spot.The Brazilian doubled his tally with a fine volley on the swivel in the 90th minute and his successive hat-tricks – after three goals in a 4-1 defeat of Wellington Phoenix last week – were sealed when he squeezed home another spot-kick via the post in stoppage time.FT | That’s one clinical performance from your Sky Blues as we equal Brisbane’s undefeated home record of 23 games… #SydneyIsSkyBlue #SYDvPER pic.twitter.com/ggg3BSZE36— Sydney FC (@SydneyFC) December 30, 2017In the day’s earlier game, Brisbane Roar survived playing the second half a man down to secure a 2-1 victory at Adelaide United.The Roar were two up thanks to goals from Fahid Ben Khalfallah and Massimo Maccarone – the Italian’s fourth in five games – when captain Matt McKay was given a straight red card on the stroke of half-time for kicking out at Nikola Mileusnic.McKay’s punishment was upgraded from the initial yellow after referee Adam Fielding consulted with the VAR, but, although Adelaide halved the deficit in the 69th minute through George Blackwood, they could not capitalise on their numerical advantage.last_img read more

Salah leads PL Team of the Week in final round of 2017

first_imgPremier League Premier League Team of the Week: Salah and Drinkwater star in final round of 2017 Goal Last updated 1 year ago 04:00 1/1/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(2) Mohamed Salah Liverpool Leicester City EPL 12302017 Getty Images Premier League Liverpool AFC Bournemouth v Everton Chelsea v Stoke City Huddersfield Town v Burnley Newcastle United v Brighton & Hove Albion Watford v Swansea City Liverpool v Leicester City Manchester United v Southampton Crystal Palace v Manchester City West Bromwich Albion v Arsenal Swansea City Everton Leicester City Manchester United AFC Bournemouth Stoke City Chelsea Huddersfield Town Burnley Brighton & Hove Albion Newcastle United Watford Southampton Manchester City Crystal Palace Arsenal West Bromwich Albion Positive results for Liverpool and Chelsea saw players from each side stand out as the Premier League said farewell to 2017last_img read more

Report: Newcastle 0 Brighton 0

first_imgNewcastle United 0 Brighton and Hove Albion 0: Chances at a premium in dull draw Matthew Scott Last updated 1 year ago 00:50 12/31/17 Newcastle - cropped Getty Images Newcastle ended a run of five home defeats by drawing 0-0 with Brighton, but a point keeps them in sight of the Premier League drop zone. Neither Newcastle United or Brighton and Hove Albion could break their recent slumps in the Premier League, playing out a forgettable 0-0 draw at St James’ Park on Saturday.The Seagulls and Magpies went into the game hoping to improve on runs of one win in nine and 11 games respectively, and both looked like sides lacking in form.Rafael Benitez and former Toon boss Chris Hughton went with expansive-looking line-ups following under-powered defeats to Manchester City and Chelsea respectively last time out, but the contest was too stretched for large parts. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Karl Darlow saved from Lewis Dunk while Mat Ryan denied Isaac Hayden and Dwight Gayle at the other end, although none of the chances were gilt-edged.The Toon remain just a point above the drop zone, but they can at least be thankful to have ended a run of five successive defeats on home turf, while Hughton’s men are in safer climes, three points further ahead.FT: Albion secure another @premierleague point on the road. Ryan made two brilliant saves to keep the game level. Dunk and Duffy both went close, but neither side could find a breakthrough. #NUFC 0 #BHAFC 0 #NEWBHA pic.twitter.com/I7EDUFbcxf— Brighton & Hove Albion (@OfficialBHAFC) December 30, 2017Benitez removed the shackles from his side after their safety-first outing against City, but there was little to lift anyone from their seat until Matt Ritchie drifted a promising free-kick out of play, bringing his manager to the touchline to vent his frustration.The visitors were unable to muster much better, Anthony Knockaert drifting the first half’s sole shot on target into Darlow’s midriff and Shane Duffy sending a half-volley over.Newcastle finally broke their torpor and Mikel Merino and Joselu fired off target, before the Magpies’ frailty at set-pieces was once again laid bare, only for Duffy to loop a header over the crossbar.Ryan made two superb saves to keep Brighton level in the opening stages of the second half, clawing Hayden’s deflected effort around the post and showing razor-sharp reflexes to repel Gayle’s flicked header.Darlow was solid behind Pascal Gross’ firmly struck free-kick at the other end between those chances and Hughton was first to look to his bench, replacing the ineffective Glenn Murray with Tomer Hemed.The hosts had muted penalty appeals turned down as Gayle and then Merino went to ground inside the Brighton box, but the visitors successfully held firm to preserve a point that leaves them looking down on an increasingly fraught battle against the drop. Key Opta stats:- Newcastle have now won just one point in their last six Premier League home games at St James’ Park (W0 D1 L5).- The Magpies have scored just two goals from 71 shots in their six league games at St James’ Park since the start of November (2.8 per cent)- This was the fourth time that Brighton have drawn 0-0 in the Premier League this season – a joint league-high alongside West Brom.- In fact, this was the 11th time that Brighton have failed to score in 21 Premier League games this season – the most in the competition, level with Crystal Palace and Swansea City.- Newcastle made seven changes to their starting XI in this match (from their last game vs Man City) – the most that a side has made in a Premier League game this season. read morelast_img read more

Young gets three-game ban for elbow

first_imgManchester United Man United’s Young gets three-game ban for elbowing Tadic Joe Wright 03:39 1/1/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) ashley young - cropped Getty Images Manchester United Premier League Watford v Swansea City Swansea City Watford Everton v Manchester United Everton The absences are piling up for Jose Mourinho, as the suspended Young joins the likes of injured duo Lukaku and Zlatan in missing the next matches Manchester United’s Ashley Young has been given a three-match ban by the Football Association (FA) after he accepted a charge of violent conduct.Young appeared to elbow the Southampton’s Dusan Tadic in the stomach as they jostled at a corner during the second half of the 0-0 draw at Old Trafford on Saturday.The 32-year-old accepted the charge, but his argument that the length of the suspension was excessive was rejected by an FA regulatory commission. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player “Ashley Young will be suspended for Manchester United’s next three matches,” the FA confirmed in a statement. “He accepted a violent conduct charge following an off-the-ball incident during yesterday’s game against Southampton, but argued the suspension was excessive. This was rejected by a Regulatory Commission.”Ashley Young will be suspended for Manchester United’s next three matches. He accepted a violent conduct charge following an off-the-ball incident during yesterday’s game against Southampton, but argued the suspension was excessive. This was rejected by a Regulatory Commission.— FA Spokesperson (@FAspokesperson) December 31, 2017The FA has also issued a three-game ban to Swansea City’s Kyle Naughton after he was seen apparently stamping on Watford striker Stefano Okaka in their 2-1 win at Vicarage Road.The news on Young is another blow for United manager Jose Mourinho, who is already without full-back Antonio Valencia, club captain Michael Carrick, Chris Smalling, Eric Bailly, Marouane Fellaini, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Romelu Lukaku due to injury.United face Everton on Monday before they host Derby County in the FA Cup next Friday. They then meet Stoke City on January 15. Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

Wenger shuts down Sanchez to City talk

first_imgTransfers Wenger shuts down further Sanchez to City talk Joe Wright 04:18 1/1/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments() alexis sanchez - cropped Getty Images Transfers Manchester City Arsène Wenger A. Sánchez West Bromwich Albion v Arsenal Arsenal West Bromwich Albion Premier League Crystal Palace v Manchester City With speculation continuing to mount about the Chilean’s future, the Arsenal boss is growing short on patience Arsene Wenger angrily shut down questions about Alexis Sanchez’s Arsenal future amid persistent rumours of renewed interest from Manchester City.City failed in their pursuit of the Chile star during the previous transfer window but there is strong speculation they will attempt to strike a deal next month, with Sanchez’s contract expiring at the end of the season.Gabriel Jesus picked up an injury in the 0-0 draw with Crystal Palace on Sunday that manager Pep Guardiola says could keep him out for up to two months, encouraging talk of an imminent City bid for Sanchez Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Guardiola himself stated he expects the 29-year-old to stay at the Emirates Stadium, though, and Wenger was in no mood to discuss the issue further after his side were held to a 1-1 draw at West Brom courtesy of Jay Rodriguez’s controversial late penalty.Asked if Sanchez had played his last game for Arsenal at The Hawthorns, Wenger told a news conference: “We play on Wednesday [against Chelsea].”I have spoken many times about that. I’m not ready to talk about that some more.”I have given you my answer many times. I don’t see why I should come back to a subject we have talked about 155 times.”The year ends with @ManCity’s gap at 14 points pic.twitter.com/ahOjW4gpfr— Premier League (@premierleague) December 31, 2017Wenger also hit back at club legend Thierry Henry after his suggestion that Arsenal players’ mixed celebrations during the 3-1 win at Crystal Palace this week pointed to a dressing-room rift caused by Sanchez’s uncertain future.”It was never a problem inside [the club],” he said. “I don’t listen to what he says and other people says.”We focus on our own problems, that’s the only thing.”There are people who are paid to talk. It’s difficult sometimes when you are paid to talk, to talk, to talk and only say things that are true and intelligent.”Asked if Arsenal will look to make signings in the transfer window, Wenger added: “Tomorrow [Monday], I will try to bring myself in first and, after that, we will see.”last_img read more

‘That was vintage Juve Pogba’

first_imgManchester United ‘That was vintage Juve Pogba’ – Henry lauds Man Utd star’s performance against Everton Sacha Pisani 10:14 1/2/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Paul Pogba, Everton vs Manchester United, 17/18 Getty Images Manchester United Paul Pogba Everton v Manchester United Everton Premier League The former Arsenal forward heaped praise on the French midfielder after his dominant display on Monday Thierry Henry was glowing in his praise for Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba, who set up both goals in Monday’s 2-0 win at Everton, also hailing the Frenchman’s leadership.Wearing the captain’s armband in the absence of injured full-back Antonio Valencia, Pogba provided assists for Anthony Martial and Jesse Lingard at Goodison Park as Jose Mourinho’s side snapped a run of three consecutive draws in the Premier League.Pogba starred on New Year’s Day, at home on the left of a three-man midfield – where the France international established himself during his time at Italian champions Juventus before returning to Manchester in 2016. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player “He can play in a lot of positions. I said when he first arrived that, for me, he is not a holding midfielder,” fellow Frenchman Henry told Sky Sports .”He can play in a lot of positions but that is where he is at his best. That was vintage Juve Pogba.”Every time Lingard was making that early run inside, he was occupying that position on the left.”When you go back on your right foot — I used to go on the left myself — you can ping a ball on the other side, you can play that reverse pass, you can play a cute one-two, you can dribble past people. As we saw, he did it all in the second half.”When he plays at that level he is almost unplayable and I think he changed the second half.”He went up to a certain level. That’s what you do as a captain. You say to your team-mates, ‘guys, follow me. I’ll show you the way.'”Great win, good begin of the year, c’mon Uniteeed  @ManUtd #mufc pic.twitter.com/Sdou35FVQ4 — Paul Pogba (@paulpogba) January 1, 2018 “When he plays like that and when he plays on the left, coming in and being kind of free, it’s very difficult to stop him,” Henry added.”Today he acted like a captain. That’s very important too.”Manchester United moved up to second in the table, two points ahead of Chelsea – who are due to play Arsenal on Wednesday – and 12 points adrift of neighbours Manchester City.Pogba and company face a match on Jan. 5, an FA Cup tie against Derby Country to close an insane run of fixtures over the festive period. The club will then have a substantial break before returning to Premier League action on Jan. 15 against Stoke City.last_img read more

Conte keen on ‘best in world’ Alexis & Vidal

first_imgTransfers ‘Sanchez and Vidal are best in the world’ – Conte keen on signing Chilean duo Nizaar Kinsella Click here to see more stories from this author Chelsea correspondent Last updated 1 year ago 06:30 1/3/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Alexis Sanchez Arturo Vidal Chile Transfers Chelsea Antonio Conte A. Sánchez Arsenal Premier League While the manager admits he has only limited input in his side’s transfer policy, he has identified the two Roja stars as top targets Antonio Conte has admitted that he is a big fan of both Bayern Munich’s Arturo Vidal and Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez as the January transfer window opens.Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia, not Conte, is in charge of new signings at Chelsea as Roman Abramovich’s representative at the club. The Italian prefers to be called head coach at Chelsea as he wants to focus on the technical side of the game rather than the business of transfers. But despite changing his phone number to avoid agents’ calls, Conte does identify transfer targets – and he is a big fan of the Chilean duo. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player “I think there is this maybe this habit here, but I’m not involved in the transfer market, I give my opinion but the club decide for the players they want to buy, to invest in,” he told reporters.”I changed my number. I don’t have this problem. In this period for us it’s very difficult, but it’s right for the club to be involved 100 per cent in the transfer market and to try to do the best for the team and for the club and I’m ready to face every situation.Alexis Sanchez 31122017“We must stay calm. I don’t like to speak about other players of other teams but you are talking about two big and strong players, top players for their roles, and Vidal is one of the best in the world but Sanchez is the same as a striker.”Conte’s admission of admiration for Sanchez comes just a day before his Arsenal side face Chelsea in the London derby. Sanchez will be available on a free transfer at the end of the season but Manchester City are thought to be in pole position to secure his services. Chelsea have a small squad compared to some of their rivals, and could look to strengthen in January. Conte is keen at the very least to not see any current first-team players leave even on loan unless replacements are signed.EN Emirates VidalThe 47-year-old gave details on how he plays his role in the club’s ambitions to secure players in the transfer windows.”I think that we must be ready for all and to work on the pitch and also to work on the transfer market but you have to understand what your role is in the club, I’m very focused on the pitch to try to improve my players and the transfer market is for the club,” he added.Conte Vidal Juventus“I trust in my club and I’m sure they will take the best decision for the team. In this case when I tell that I give my opinion to the club, I try to tell where are the roles we can improve also on the numerical aspect because in some roles we don’t have a couple of players.”Or there is a young player that is not ready to play with the first team. If the club ask me some names I try to do this but then it’s the club, it’s the club that decides the name, the investment, which is the best player for the team.””I think that the situation can change a club-by-club [on who signs the players], in Italy for example there is a sporting director to talk about the transfer market also with you and to answer these questions and for the coach.Michael Emenalo“It’s easier because I understand that in England it’s a bit different and in every press conference in this period it’s normal to get this kind of question. I think that it’s important for you to know and I’m a coach, I give my opinion if the club ask me, I think it’s right.”Michael Emenalo has left his key role of technical director in Chelsea’s transfer process to become sporting director at AS Monaco. The club doesn’t yet have plans to bring in someone new to work on transfers with Granovskaia but are considering various options which may not include a like-for-like replacement.last_img read more

Pochettino: Spurs were better than Swansea

first_imgTottenham Hotspur We’re just better than Swansea – Pochettino dismisses importance of extra rest Ryan Benson 07:40 1/3/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) pochettino-cropped Getty Images Tottenham Hotspur Premier League Swansea City v Tottenham Hotspur Swansea City Harry Kane The Londoners prevailed on Tuesday having had three days more to prepare, but the Spurs manager does not think that had an impact Mauricio Pochettino dismissed the idea that Tottenham’s less hectic festive schedule gave them an advantage over Swansea City, insisting that Spurs are simply a better team.Much has been made by some managers in recent days about the packed Premier League schedule around the turn of the year, with some teams playing two matches just 48 hours apart.Pep Guardiola, Jose Mourinho, Antonio Conte and Alan Pardew are among those to have spoken out, with the West Brom manager even suggesting that his club had lodged an official complaint. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player But Pochettino does not think the fact Spurs had three full days of recovery more than Swansea had any impact on their 2-0 victory at the Liberty Stadium on Tuesday. Mauricio: “I think we played well and deserved the victory. The conditions weren’t the best to play football, but the effort was fantastic.” #COYS pic.twitter.com/jYcQJCwZpE— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) January 2, 2018″I think the result speaks for itself, a win,” Pochettino told Sky Sports. “We’re better than Swansea.”It wasn’t our physical condition that was an advantage, we just played better, created more chances than them and deserved the victory.”But after the game we’re pleased because the conditions really were terrible for playing football. The effort was great.”Fernando Llorente scored the first goal on his return to the Liberty Stadium, as the Spaniard was given his maiden Premier League start in a Spurs shirt due to the recent illness of Harry Kane.Kicking off 2018 with a win! #COYS pic.twitter.com/5xDEtVJCaJ— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) January 2, 2018But Kane did come on in the 68th minute and played a vital role in Dele Alli’s late clincher, with Pochettino praising his impact.”I think that we did well with him, because we saw that it was difficult for him to run,” Pochettino added.”But it was a good training session for him to prepare for the next game, so hopefully he’s okay in the next 24 hours and he’s ready to start.”He is a complete player. He doesn’t only score, he creates, builds, hold the ball up. He’s a complete striker.” Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

Tosun to Everton ‘not finished’

first_imgTransfers Tosun to Everton ‘not finished’, says Besiktas chief Dom Farrell Last updated 1 year ago 20:03 1/3/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Cenk Tosun - Cropped Getty Images Transfers Everton Beşiktaş Premier League Süper Lig The Turkish club say that any deal is not near completion, and claim to have rejected a bid from a Chinese Super League club Everton still have work to do in order to complete the signing of Besiktas striker Cenk Tosun, the Turkish Super Lig side have revealed.Turkey international Tosun was understood to be on the verge of sealing a £25 million move to Goodison Park, with Besiktas chairman Fikret Orman reportedly due in London for meetings with the Everton hierarchy on Wednesday.But speaking at the signing ceremony for new recruit Domagoj Vida, Orman told reporters his club have previously turned down an offer in excess of what Everton tabled from a Chinese Super League club. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player “We had an offer from Everton. But the situation is not finished yet,” he said.”We had an offer from a Chinese club for him too. They offered €35 million but we didn’t even talk about that.”Cenk Tosun’s future is important to us too.”Tosun, 26, has scored 14 goals in 24 matches for Besiktas this season, including four in six outings as Senol Gunes’ side reached the knockout stages of the Champions League.last_img read more

Hazard frustrated with Chelsea’s missed chances

first_imgChelsea ‘We missed a lot of chances’ – Hazard frustrated after Arsenal draw Joe Wright 06:24 1/4/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(6) eden hazard - cropped Getty Images Chelsea Premier League Arsenal v Chelsea Arsenal Eden Hazard Alvaro Morata was the principal culprit as the Blues were held at the Emirates Stadium, a result that left Hazard less than satisfied Eden Hazard felt Chelsea created enough chances to win their meeting with Arsenal and was frustrated to leave the Emirates Stadium with a 2-2 draw.Hector Bellerin’s 92nd-minute strike rescued a point for the Gunners in a pulsating derby clash on Wednesday, after Chelsea had come from behind to lead 2-1.Jack Wilshere broke the deadlock midway through the second half before Hazard’s penalty and a Marcos Alonso goal looked to have secured the win for the visitors with six minutes remaining, only for Bellerin to equalise with a brilliant half-volley. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Goalkeepers Petr Cech and Thibaut Courtois made some fine saves in an engrossing contest but Chelsea arguably had the better opportunities, with Alvaro Morata missing three one-on-ones and Davide Zappacosta rattling the crossbar in the dying seconds.Hazard admitted it was a disappointing outcome for the visitors, telling Sky Sports: “Chelsea should have won this game, because of the chances.”It was 50-50, both teams played a really good game. Maybe we should have scored more goals – we missed a lot of chances.”I think the last shot [from Zappacosta] should be a goal and, just before, Alvaro missed a chance. Petr did a great job today. He’s a great goalkeeper and it’s always hard to score against him.”4 – Arsenal have conceded a joint-high 4 penalty goals in the Premier League this season (level with Watford and West Ham). Spotted. pic.twitter.com/QiBTWEwYwB— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) January 3, 2018Bellerin was pleased with Arsenal’s reaction to falling behind but felt they should have done better to keep their initial lead, with Hazard equalising four minutes after Wilshere’s strike.”It was non-stop,” said the full-back. “It’s always a hard game when we play them, always a lot of entertainment, always really hard.”It was disappointing because we should have held the score at the beginning but it was a great reaction.”We had so many chances in the first half but it was a great game of football.”Bellerin conceded the penalty by kicking the sole of Hazard’s boot as both players stretched for a loose ball, but the Spain international would not say if he felt referee Anthony Taylor made the wrong decision.”He’s very quick in the box, I saw the ball in the air and we both went for it at the same time,” he said. “The ref thought it was a pen.”Hazard was less equivocal in his assessment, adding: “We don’t need a replay – it was a penalty.” Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

Conte: Out-of-sorts Morata was unlucky

first_imgChelsea Conte blames bad luck for dismal Morata display at Arsenal Joe Wright 07:36 1/4/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) alvaro morata - cropped Getty Images Chelsea Premier League Arsenal v Chelsea Arsenal Morata Antonio Conte The Spaniard’s forgettable showing in the 2-2 draw at the Emirates, including three missed one-on-ones, was passed off as bad luck by his boss Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte has challenged Alvaro Morata to work hard to improve in the wake of his poor performance against Arsenal.The striker missed three one-on-one chances in a thrilling 2-2 draw at the Emirates Stadium, the last of which came after Hector Bellerin fired home the Gunners’ equaliser in the 92nd minute.Morata has scored 10 goals in 19 Premier League appearances this season but the majority of those came in the opening three months, with the 25-year-old having only netted twice in his last eight top-flight matches. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Conte feels the Spaniard has been short on luck in recent weeks but admits his side had plenty of chances to take all three points from Wednesday’s match.”I think it’s a pity because when you have a lot of chances to score, you must win the game. Instead, we’re talking about a good draw against a good team,” he told Sky Sports.When things don’t go as expected there’s only one way… Work hard!Se nos escaparon los tres puntos… Cuando las cosas no salen como uno espera, solo hay un camino… trabajar, trabajar y trabajar. pic.twitter.com/uBcVFLqEOk— Álvaro Morata (@AlvaroMorata) January 3, 2018Asked about Morata’s misses, Conte said: “He is not lucky in this period. He has to continue to work and improve. It’s a pity because he had many chances to score but, at the same time, I’m very happy for his effort and commitment.”We must be disappointed, me and the players. We had a good chance to win because we deserved to win. “But this is football and we must accept the final result and continue to work really hard to try to score more.”My disappointment is the same as my players. We win together, we draw together, we lose together. I repeat, it’s a pity because we deserved to win the game.”The draw means Chelsea stay third in the table, a point behind second-placed Manchester United and 16 adrift of leaders Manchester City. Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

Man Utd vs Derby: Team news & TV guide

first_imgFA Cup Manchester United vs Derby County: TV channel, stream, kick-off time, odds & match preview Ryan Kelly Last updated 1 year ago 17:00 1/5/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Jesse Lingard Manchester United Getty FA Cup Manchester United Manchester United v Derby County Derby County Jose Mourinho’s men returned to winning ways at the beginning of the year and they will be desperate to string a series of positive results together Manchester United welcome Championship side Derby County to Old Trafford on Friday as they get their FA Cup campaign under way.The Red Devils ended a four-game winless run when they defeated Everton 1-0 on New Year’s Day and Jose Mourinho will be keen for his players to build on that as they come out the other side of a hectic festive schedule.Derby, meanwhile, are enjoying a seven-game unbeaten streak in all competitions so they will fancy their chances of staging an upset against the Premier League giants. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Game Manchester United vs Derby County Date Friday, January 5 Time 20:00 GMT / 15:00 ET Stream (US only) fuboTV (7-day free trial) TV CHANNEL & LIVE STREAM Jose Mourinho, Manchester United vs SouthamptonThe game is not being shown live on television in the United Kingdom, but Goal will be providing updates here. US TV channel Online stream FS2 fuboTV In the United States (US), the FA Cup can be watched live and on-demand with fuboTV (7-day free trial). New users can sign up for a free seven-day trial of the live sports streaming service, which can be accessed via iOS, Android, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Roku and Apple TV as well as on a web browser.SQUADS & TEAM NEWS Position Man United players Goalkeepers De Gea, Romero, Pereira Defenders Lindelof, Jones, Rojo, Smalling, Blind, Shaw, Valencia, Darmian, Tuanzebe Midfielders Pogba, Mata, Lingard, Young, Herrera, Mkhitaryan, Matic, Mitchell, McTominay Forwards Lukaku, Martial, Rashford Manchester United are certain to be without a number of key first-team players with Eric Bailly, Michael Carrick and Zlatan Ibrahimovic all ruled out, but Marouane Fellaini could return.Romelu Lukaku has been cleared to take part in the game following his head injury against Southampton, while Ashley Young is suspended.Potential Man Utd starting XI: Romero; Darmian, Jones, Smalling, Shaw; Matic, Pogba, Lingard, Young; Martial, Rashford. Position Derby players Goalkeepers Carson, Mitchell Defenders Forsyth, Shackell, Keogh, Baird, Wisdom, Pearce, Lowe, Hanson, Olsson, Davies Midfielders Anya, Lawrence, Johnson, Thorne, Ledley, Guy, Bird, Huddlestone Forwards Russell, Martin, Bent, Winnall, Weimann, Bennett, Vydra, Nugent, Thomas Derby have a number of injury concerns coming into the game, with Wales international duo Tom Lawrence and Joe Ledley both carrying knocks, while Bradley Johnson is also being monitored.Rams boss Gary Rowett has indicated that he will make some “subtle changes” to his starting XI in order to cope with the busy schedule.Potential Derby starting XI: Carson; Forsyth, Keogh, Davies, Baird; Huddlestone, Winnall, Vydra, Russell, Weimann; Nugent.BETTING & MATCH ODDS Nemanja Matic Marcus Rashford Manchester UnitedManchester United are 1/4 favourites to win according to dabblebet, with Derby priced at 11/1 to beat the Red Devils. A draw is available at 9/2.Click here to see all of dabblebet’s offers for the game, including goalscoring markets, correct score predictions and more.GAME PREVIEW Jesse Lingard Ashley Young Manchester United West BromThe festive period was undoubtedly a rocky patch for Man United and a series of disappointing results has seen them cede considerable ground to their rivals in the league as well as seeing them exit the Carabao Cup.Mourinho’s side suffered a humiliating last-minute elimination in the Carabao Cup quarter-final at the hands of another Championship side – Bristol City – and they will be desperate to avoid a repeat of that scenario when they take on Derby.On paper, Rowett’s Rams pose more of a threat to United than Bristol City did, boasting a plethora of experienced internationals in their squad, so it is certainly a game that the Red Devils cannot afford to take lightly by implementing mass changes.That said, the busy schedule has taken its toll on the United squad, with injuries to Lukaku and Ibrahimovic handing Mourinho an unwelcome selection quandary, but the Portuguese will be buoyed by the performances of Jesse Lingard, who has shone in recent matches.last_img read more

‘Wilshere a superstar approaching Alexis & Ozil level’

first_imgArsenal Wilshere a ‘superstar’ approaching Alexis and Ozil level – Keown calls for new Arsenal deal Chris Burton Last updated 1 year ago 22:59 1/5/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments() Jack Wilshere Arsenal 2017 Getty Images Arsenal Premier League A. Sánchez Mesut Özil Transfers The former Gunners defender has been impressed by the England international’s return to form and believes fresh terms “should be a formality” Jack Wilshere is “a superstar approaching the levels of Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil”, says Martin Keown, with a new Arsenal contract “a formality”.The 26-year-old midfielder was in danger of becoming a forgotten man at Emirates Stadium when allowed to link up with Premier League rivals Bournemouth last season.Another untimely injury saw that spell cut short and it appeared as though the England international was destined to leave north London, either during the 2017-18 campaign or at the end of his current deal. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Wilshere has, however, forced his way back into contention and so impressive has his form been of late that he is now considered to be a vital part of Arsene Wenger’s plans – especially as he has expressed a willingness to stay on, unlike fellow potential summer free agents Sanchez and Ozil.”Jack [Wilshere] proved against Chelsea on Wednesday that he is well and truly back, and a force to be reckoned with,” former Gunners defender Keown wrote in a column for the Daily Mail.”He is a superstar approaching the levels of Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil but, crucially, he wants to play for Arsenal.”The uncertainty surrounding the futures of Sanchez and Ozil has created a flat feeling at Arsenal.Jack Wilshere superstar like Alexis Sanchez Mesut Ozil Martin Keown“Much was made of some Arsenal players not celebrating with Sanchez when he scored at Crystal Palace but that was not the case when Wilshere fired Arsenal into the lead against Chelsea. You could see how much his goal meant to everyone, including the substitutes. “Wilshere is the figurehead in this dressing room and does not take any nonsense.”He has taken those fighting qualities which have seen him battle back from injury and is displaying them to great effect. He is the dynamo in Arsenal’s engine room.”With Wilshere now very much back in favour, and with Wenger admitting that future talks are planned, Keown believes it is only a matter of time before an extended stay is agreed.He added: “It should be a formality that he signs a new contract. Given his injury history, he will have to be realistic and the club may want to build something into his deal which is linked to appearances. “If Wilshere plays, he should be paid top dollar, but allowances have to be made for if he has another lengthy injury lay-off.”Wilshere has made 19 appearances for Arsenal in all competitions this season – his best return for the club since 2014-15.last_img read more

Monterrey vs Morelia: Team news & live stream

first_imgLiga MX Monterrey vs Morelia: Live stream, team news, kick-off time, & match preview Goal Last updated 1 year ago 02:07 1/6/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Carlos Sanchez Nicolas Sanchez Dorlan Pabon Monterrey Julio Cesar Aguilar Liga MX Monterrey v Morelia Morelia Monterrey Last season’s defeated finalists look to get 2018 started right when they host Monarcas at the Estadio BBVA Bancomer After Monterrey surprisingly fell short in the Liga MX final last month, the club begins the Clausura on Saturday with a home match against Morelia.The game at the Estadio BBVA Bancomer will be a playoff rematch, after Rayados took care of Monarcas in the Apertura semifinals by a 5-0 aggregate scoreline. Rayados dominated Liga MX in the Apertura, finishing the regular season in first place, and Antonio Mohamed’s side will be expected to finish right near the top once again in the Clausura.  Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Game Monterrey vs Morelia Date Saturday, January 6 Time 8:00 p.m. ET Stream (US only) fuboTV (7-day free trial) LIVE STREAM Aviles Hurtado MonterreyWatch Monterrey vs. Morelia live and On-Demand with fuboTV (7-day free trial)New users can sign up for a free seven-day trial of the live sports streaming service, which can be accessed via iOS, Android, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Roku and Apple TV as well as on a web browser.SQUADS & TEAM NEWS Position Monterrey players Goalkeepers Gonzalez, Carrizo, Resendez Defenders Montes, Basanta, Sanchez, Portales, Vasquez, Alvarez, Vangioni, Velarde, Castillo, Medina, Juarez Midfielders Molina, Ortiz, Zavala, J. Gonzalez, Amaya, Sanchez, A. Gonzalez, Urretaviscaya, Hurtado Forwards Funes Mori, Pabon, Benitez, Villa, Cruz Mohamed’s side will have most of its key contributors back for the Clausura, with Neri Cardozo the most significant name to depart the club. The club’s most significant offseason acquisition was Jonathan Urretaviscaya, who arrives from Pachuca and will be expected to bolster the Rayados attack from a wide midfield position. Potential starting XI: Gonzalez; Basanta, Montes, Sanchez, Medina; Gonzalez, Molina, Urretaviscaya, Hurtado; Funes Mori, Pabon. Position Morelia players Goalkeepers Malagon, Urbina, Sosa Defenders Achilier, Loeschbor, Vegas, Valadez, Rodriguez, Chavez, Guzman Midfielders Meraz, Osuna, Rodríguez, Rocha, Millar, Valdes, Reyes, Cuero, Vilchis, Sepulveda, Zarate, Polo, Lezcano Forwards Sandoval, Ruidiaz, Ortiz, Sansores Monarcas return much of the same side from the Apertura, when they finished in fourth place and defeated Toluca in the Liguilla quarterfinals, before falling to Monterrey in the semifinal. Manager Roberto Hernandez will not have new signing Ray Sandoval available, as the Peruvian striker’s paperwork has not gone through yet following his move from Sporting Cristal in Peru.Potential starting XI: Sosa; Vegas, Rodriguez, Achilier, Guzman; Millar, Osuna; Lezcano, Valdes, Sepulveda; Ruidiaz.GAME PREVIEW Raul Ruidiaz MoreliaRayados were dealt a body blow in the Apertura final against city rivals Tigres, losing 2-1 at home in the second leg to fall to a heartbreaking 3-2 aggregate defeat. Mohamed’s side did pick up a consolation prize a couple weeks later, defeating Pachuca to lift the Copa MX, but the Argentine manager enters the Clausura under pressure to deliver the title that evaded his side last month. Monterrey is positioned well to start the season off on the right foot, facing a Morelia side that will not have forgotten the 4-0 defeat it suffered in the Apertura semifinal second leg at the Estadio BBVA Bancomer just a month ago. Rayados return nearly their entire squad from last season, including top scorer Aviles Hurtado. The Colombian will be looking to erase some painful memories in the Clausura, after his late penalty miss against Tigres cost his side an opportunity to take last month’s final into extra time. Morelia has also put a premium on continuity, returned most of the squad that finished fourth in the Apertura.As usual, Monarcas will be counting on Raul Ruidiaz to deliver the goals. The Peruvian netted 11 times for his side in the Apertura, easily leading the team in scoring.last_img read more

Barca agree €160m deal with Liverpool for Coutinho

first_imgTransfers Barcelona agree record €160m deal with Liverpool for Coutinho Melissa Reddy Liverpool FC Correspondent Last updated 1 year ago 01:03 1/7/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(67) Philippe Coutinho Liverpool Getty Images Transfers Philippe Coutinho Liverpool Barcelona Premier League The Brazil international ends five years on Merseyside as he is set to finalise his desired move to Camp Nou Philippe Coutinho will become Barcelona’s most expensive signing after a deal worth €160 million was agreed with Liverpool, which is the new British transfer record.La Liga’s leaders will part with €120m as a guaranteed base fee, with another €40m in performance and appearance-related add-ons that are expected to be triggered.Philippe Coutinho Liverpool Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player The 25-year-old will move ahead of Ousmane Dembele as Barca’s highest-cost recruit, also surpassing Paul Pogba as the biggest player trade involving an English club.Liverpool failed in their exhaustive efforts to convince Coutinho, who did not travel with the squad to a warm-weather camp in Dubai , to remain on Merseyside until the end of the season at the very least.The Brazilian declined their proposed incentives and offer of a higher wage , repeating his intention to move to Camp Nou with immediate effect.gfx most expensive players in the worldHaving approached the Reds on July 20 with the first of three unsuccessful summer bids bloated by improbable clauses, Barca finally succeeded in their pursuit of the playmaker on Saturday.Liverpool were definitive in their stance that Coutinho was not for sale at any price in the summer, rejecting his transfer request in the process, but with their No.10 maintaining his desire to depart and Barca finally tabling an acceptable package for his services, Jurgen Klopp agreed to sanction his sale.The Brazilian made 201 appearances and scored 54 goals for Liverpool after signing in January 2013 from Inter for just £8.5m.He is now the third most expensive footballer in the world, behind Paris Saint-Germain pair Neymar and Kylian Mbappe.last_img read more

Torres, Suarez & now Coutinho: Liverpool’s lost stars

first_imgTransfers Torres, Suarez & now Coutinho: The stars Liverpool have lost to Europe’s elite Mark Doyle Last updated 1 year ago 02:15 1/7/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(25) Liverpool's lost stars Getty/Goal Transfers Liverpool Premier League Manchester City Chelsea Real Madrid Barcelona Primera División Raheem Sterling Luis Suárez Philippe Coutinho Opinion The Brazilian is set to join Barcelona, which will make him the latest in a long line of top players to have left Anfield during their title droughtlast_img read more

Exclusive: Daniel Arzani looking to leave Melbourne City

first_imgTransfers The Covert Agent: Daniel Arzani looking to leave Melbourne City for rival A-League clubs The Covert Agent Last updated 1 year ago 08:31 1/7/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Daniel Arzani Melbourne City Transfers Melbourne City A-League Melbourne City v Wellington Phoenix Wellington Phoenix Goal’s exclusive spy can reveal the super-talented attacker is looking to sever ties with the City Football Group and head north Wonderkid Daniel Arzani is keen to leave Melbourne City at the end of the season, with Sydney FC or Western Sydney Wanderers the preferred destinations.The 19-year-old came off the bench on Saturday night to set up both of Ross McCormack’s goal as City came from behind to defeat Wellington Phoenix 2-1.The Covert Agent can reveal Arzani’s representatives have contacted the Sky Blues and Wanderers about a deal next season, because of the Sydney-born player’s dissatisfaction with his development under City coach Warren Joyce and his wish to return to his home state Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Arzani, whose contract expires at the end of the season, has made nine A-League appearances for City over the past two campaigns since joining from the AIS in 2016, but is yet to start a match and has only played 137 minutes.It was plain to see the tension between player and boss in Joyce’s post-match conference following the Phoenix victory, with the former Manchester United coach reluctant to praise Arzani, instead offering words of warning to the youngster.”There is a lot of things he has got to work on in his game. He’s got to be willing to listen to people at the football club,” Joyce said.”If he trusts us to develop him, he could be a very good player.”If he listens to other people and has got a different agenda, I’m seen a lot of players exactly the same as him fall by the wayside.”It is understood Arzani has a clause in his contract for it to be automatically extended if he plays a certain amount of games, believed to be 15, for City during the current season.last_img read more

Bayern without Lewandowski & Hummels

first_imgBayern München Blow for Bayern as Lewandowski and Hummels ruled out of Leverkusen clash Ryan Benson 20:16 1/11/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) lewandowski-cropped Bongarts Bayern München Bundesliga Robert Lewandowski Bayer Leverkusen v Bayern München Bayer Leverkusen Jupp Heynckes has ruled the duo out of a Bundesliga contest on Friday, but Joshua Kimmich does travel with the reigning champions Robert Lewandowski and Mats Hummels will miss Bayern Munich’s Bundesliga clash with Bayer Leverkusen on Friday due to injury, coach Jupp Heynckes has confirmed.Both players sustained problems during Germany’s mid-season break, with Lewandowski suffering with a knee issue and Hummels injuring an adductor.The pair were forced to train alone for much of Bayern’s training camp in Doha, before returning to the rest of the group on Thursday. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player However, Friday’s trip to Leverkusen has come too soon for them, with Heynckes revealing they will definitely miss out.#Heynckes on team news: “@lewy_official and @matshummels will not be available tomorrow.” #B04FCB pic.twitter.com/yEwLUtrlsb— FC Bayern English (@FCBayernEN) January 11, 2018″I am happy that both have trained partly with the team and both feel well,” Heynckes said at his pre-match news conference. “We will be able to increase their training schedule from next Monday, but it would be negligent to let them play. That’s why both are not part of the squad.”There is good news regarding Joshua Kimmich, who has been deemed ready to at least be selected in the travelling party, even if there are still some doubts about his fitness following an illness.#Heynckes: “Joshua #Kimmich will be in the squad against @bayer04_en, but it’s not clear whether or not he will start.” #B04FCB pic.twitter.com/idlJtHXd05— FC Bayern English (@FCBayernEN) January 11, 2018″Joshua Kimmich will travel with the team, but I have to think about if he will start,” Heynckes added.Lewandowski’s absence means Sandro Wagner is likely to be handed his first start in his second spell for the club, having joined from Hoffenheim at the start of January for a figure reported to be in the region of €12 million.Heynckes expects the Germany international to fit seamlessly into their system.#Heynckes on #Wagner: “Sandro has settled in well. He is very disciplined and has impressed in training. I’m very happy with him and he is the first option up front tomorrow.” #B04FCB pic.twitter.com/zdZVM5N50q— FC Bayern English (@FCBayernEN) January 11, 2018″I don’t think it changes that much [about how they play],” the Bayern boss said. “He [Wagner] is also a player who can play with his back to the opponent and make balls, like Lewy [Lewandowski].”He has settled in well so far. He’s very disciplined and impressed me in Doha. I’m happy and he’ll be the first option in attack.”Bayern can open up a 14-point lead – at least temporarily – with victory in Leverkusen, but their fourth-placed hosts possess a number of particularly threatening players, with Heynckes highlighting Leon Bailey, Julian Brandt and Kai Havertz.Heynckes said: “Leon Bailey has made good progress and is scoring goals and Julian Brandt is a talented player.”But it’s not only the two of them; Kai Havertz is also an outstanding talent, their defence is strong. Leverkusen are a convincing team. They’ve gone 12 Bundesliga games without defeat.”They’re a young, highly talented, hungry, fast-paced team that also has a lot of imagination. It’s a game with all the ingredients that make football so attractive, and both teams can play football very well. It’s going to be difficult.”last_img read more