‘Neymar is a very good player,’ admits Zidane

first_imgNeymar ‘Neymar is a very good player’ but Zidane ignoring Real Madrid rumours Iain Strachan 22:39 17/3/2018 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Neymar - cropped Getty Images Neymar Real Madrid Zinédine Zidane Real Madrid v Girona Juventus v Real Madrid UEFA Champions League Primera División PSG The Brazil international continues to be linked with a move back to Spain, but it is not something the Frenchman is thinking about. Real Madrid head coach Zinedine Zidane insists he remains focused on his own players, not rumoured transfer target Neymar.Brazil international Neymar has been heavily linked with a move to La Liga powerhouse Madrid, despite having only joined Paris Saint-Germain from Barcelona for a world-record fee of €222million in August.Madrid players Casemiro and Dani Carvajal both said this week Neymar could be a success at the Santiago Bernabeu.  Article continues below Editors’ Picks Williams case shows Solskjaer isn’t holding Man Utd’s youngsters back – he’s protecting them 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 PSG coach Unai Emery issued a weary response to the latest questions about the future of 26-year-old at a news conference, suggesting reporters should ask Madrid president Florentino Perez for an update.Speaking at his own media briefing ahead of a league game at home to Girona on Sunday, Zidane said it is not surprising members of his squad praised one of the best players in the world when prompted.  “Everyone is entitled to their opinion, if you ask the players, if you ask me about Neymar, he is a very good player, but he is not a Real Madrid player,” he said.”I have to focus on my players and talk about them.”Contrary to comments made by Carvajal about the Champions League being the only remaining priority for Madrid, Zidane feels obliged to drive his players on in search of better domestic performances.Los Blancos are third in the table, seven points behind Atletico Madrid in second and 15 back from leaders Barcelona.”When Dani said that, [it] is because of the situation in the table, they like to play every tournament, but it’s true that it’s mentally harder when you’re far from the first [position],” he said.”You can think that it will be hard to achieve something in LaLiga, but [in] my role as coach I have to convince them that every game is important, now we’re in the third position so we have to try to get the second one, that’s also an important goal.”But yes it’s understandable that you journalists or Dani think that it’s less motivating to play LaLiga but I say no, in the end they’re always motivated and tomorrow we have a chance to [play] a great game.”Friday’s draw for the Champions League quarter-finals pitted Madrid against Juventus in a rematch of last season’s final in Cardiff, when the Spanish giants won 4-1 to become the first team to retain the title in the competition’s current format.”When Juventus are in good shape they are strong competitive side, it’s going to be a tough tie, as always,” Zidane said.”I think if you look at it, it’s going to be 50-50. We play the first game there and then we will see.”last_img read more

Balotelli could be named Italy captain despite ‘ugly’ fan banner

first_imgMario Balotelli Balotelli could be named Italy captain despite ‘ugly’ fan banner, Mancini confirms Jamie Smith Last updated 1 year ago 07:40 6/1/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Mario Balotelli Italy Getty Images Mario Balotelli Olympique Marseille v Nice Nice Ligue 1 Italy v Saudi Arabia Italy Friendlies The Azzurri head coach has suggested the recalled striker could be handed the captaincy Mario Balotelli could be named Italy captain but the striker is a doubt to face France, said head coach Roberto Mancini.Balotelli repaid Mancini’s faith in recalling him to the international setup with a goal against Saudi Arabia in his first Azzurri appearance for four years. The Nice striker hit out at a banner – featuring the words ‘my captain has Italian blood’ – displayed during the game that appeared to be targeted at Balotelli. 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 Mancini defended the former Manchester City forward and said he would not hold back from naming Balotelli as his captain in the future.”In the national team, the armband always goes to the player with the most caps,” Mancini told the media on Thursday.”If Balotelli were in the starting XI and had more caps than the others, then he would be captain.”The banner we saw in St Gallen was an ugly incident that should not have happened.”In any case, Balotelli is in doubt to play [against France on Friday and we’ll only decide tomorrow morning.”Balotelli’s Nice future is in doubt as the Italian is out of contract and Mancini offered the striker some guidance as to his next move.”If Mario does leave Nice, then it’s important he finds a club where he can play regularly, score goals and continue to improve,” Mancini added.Balotelli, however, said he is in the dark about where he will be playing his club football in the 2018-19 season.”I never really think about [the future],” Balotelli told Nice’s official website. “I don’t want to think too far [ahead].”I want to concentrate on what comes during the week. Next week, I will think about next week. After, I will think about the week after.”To be honest, I know nothing about my future.”last_img read more

X BLADES NATIONAL 18 YEARS AND UNDER CHAMPIONSHIPS DAY 1 PREVIEW

first_imgDay 1 of the 2007 X Blades National 18 Years and Under Championships will commence Wednesday 19 September from 10.00am at the BCU International Stadium Coffs Harbour with all teams looking forward to opening their account at the showcase Junior event of the year.There are several marquee clashes tomorrow in both the Boys and Girls divisions across the 3 respective pools on the Main field that looks in immaculate condition.In Field One action in the Girls 18s Division, 2006 Grand Finalists New South Wales Combined High Schools (NSWCHS) the top seeds in Pool B, kick off the program against a well-credentialed Mets team at 10.00am.Later in the day defending Girls champions Queensland Secondary Schools Touch (QSST) and the top seeds in Pool A, feature on the “TV Field” against Sunshine Coast at 1.20pm.The 2.10pm clash on Field 1 will be a crackerjack contest between the two top seeds in Pool C of the Girls division, South Queensland Sharks and the Southern Suns.In the Boys Competition, Top seeds in Pool C QSST will look to get their 2007 campaign off to a flyer against the Australian Capital Territory (ACT).In Boys Pool A action, defending champions Mets with no less than 10 Australian Youth squad members in their line up, will face up to New South Wales Combined Catholic Colleges (NSWCCC) at 3.50pm on the main stadium.2006 Grand Finalists NSWCHS will look to get their 2007 title bid off to a winning start when they confront a well-heeled Sunshine Cast team in the last scheduled fixture game of the day at 4.40pm.There will be 36 games on four fields in nine timeslots tomorrow with the action sure to be fast and furious.Touch Football Australia will keep you updated with all the news, views, and information from the tournament throughout each day on the TFA Home page.For further information and comprehensive results visit the X Blades National 18 Years and Under Website at: http://www.sportingpulse.com/assoc_page.cgi?assoc=742&pID=14 The Schedule of Games – Day 1 Wednesday 19 September 200710.00amGirls’ Pool A R1      QSST v EaglesGirls’ Pool B R1      NSWCHS v MetsGirls’ Pool B R1      NT v NSWCISGirls’ Pool C R1      Sharks v Scorpions10.50amGirls’ Pool A R1      CQ v NSWCCCGirls’ Pool A R1      TouchWest v Sunshine CoastGirls’ Pool B R1       Rebels v CobrasGirls’ Pool C R1       Tasmania v Hornets 11.40amBoys’ Pool A R1      Mets v SharksBoys’ Pool C R1      Tasmania v HornetsBoys’ Pool C R1      QSST v ACTGirls’ Pool C R1       ACT v Suns12.30pmBoys’ Pool A R1      NSWCIS v CobrasBoys’ Pool A R1      SA v NSWCCCBoys’ Pool B R1      NSWCHS v EaglesBoys’ Pool C R1      NT v Suns1.20pmBoys’ Pool B R1      Scorpions v CQBoys’ Pool B R1      Rebels v Sunshine CoastGirls’ Pool A R2      QSST v Sunshine CoastGirls’ Pool B R2       Mets v NT2.10pmGirls’ Pool A R2      Eagles v CQ Girls’ Pool A R2      NSWCCC v TouchWestGirls’ Pool B R2      NSWCHS v CobrasGirls’ Pool C R2      Sharks v Suns3.00pmGirls’ Pool B R2       NSWCIS v RebelsGirls’ Pool C R2       Hornets v ACTGirls’ Pool C R2       Scorpions v TasmaniaBoys’ Pool C R2      QSST v TouchWest3.50pmBoys’ Pool A R2      Mets v NSWCCCBoys’ Pool A R2      Cobras v SA Boys’ Pool A R2      Sharks v NSWCISBoys’ Pool C R2      Suns v Tasmania4.40pmBoys’ Pool B R2      NSWCHS v Sunshine CoastBoys’ Pool B R2      CQ v RebelsBoys’ Pool B R2      Eagles v ScorpionsBoys’ Pool C R2      Hornets v ACTlast_img read more

Helping State Competition

first_imgRepresentatives from five States and Territory’s came to TFA to discuss State competitions. Wednesday saw Peggy Sanders from the Northern Territory, Phoebe Burgoyne-Scutts from the ACT, Lewis Tuck from Victoria, Mitch Collins from WA and Renee Bryant from SA come to TFA in Canberra to discuss competition development.The aim of the meeting was to create best practice guidelines for State Competitions. It was of benefit to streamline competitions, for other development opportunities.There was also a visit from BMTA’s Matt Hall. BMTA is Australia’s best-run affiliate, and Matt was there for competition analysis. This meeting will help all State-based competitions, and ultimately affiliates.last_img read more

10 months ago​Everton post record revenues for second consecutive year

first_imgAbout the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say ​Everton post record revenues for second consecutive yearby Freddie Taylor10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveEverton are in a very healthy financial position.The club has posted record revenues for the second year in a row.With total revenues of £189 million for the year, it is a ten percent bump on the figure from last year.The major increases came from sponsorships and commercial revenue, which are up 45 percent.Chief Executive Officer Denise Barrett-Baxendale said in a statement: “For the second consecutive year the club has generated record revenue.”Gate receipts, sponsorship and other commercial income increased significantly by 45 per cent and the continued and quite magnificent support of our fans meant that season tickets reached the cap with more than 10,000 on a waiting list.”This commercial growth demonstrates our progress and we have a vision for the club that is shared on and off the pitch by our majority shareholder, chairman, our board of directors, the Everton leadership team, our director of football and manager.”Chairman Bill Kenwright added: “With Farhad continuing his outstanding commitment, Marcel and Marco driving our first team forward, Unsie continuing to develop some of the best young talent, Denise thrusting our operations ever onward and a fanbase that continues to inspire our ambition, we look forward to the next 12 months with purpose and anticipation.” last_img read more

10 months agoSteven Davis pushing to leave Southampton for Rangers return

first_imgSteven Davis pushing to leave Southampton for Rangers returnby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveSteven Davis is set to leave Southampton for a return to Rangers.Davis is in the final six months of his contract and Steven Gerrard is keen to bring him back to Ibrox, says the Daily Mail. Gers will try to sign him for a small compensation fee this month.The 33-year-old, who has started just two times this season, is understood to be keen on the idea of returning to Ibrox to gain more regular playing time. The experienced Northern Ireland international is a firm favourite with the Rangers fans having made over 140 appearances for the club during a four-year spell between 2008-12. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

10 months agoReal Madrid striker Benzema unimpressed by L’Equipe

first_imgReal Madrid striker Benzema unimpressed by L’Equipeby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveReal Madrid striker Karim Benzema is unimpressed by L’Equipe ignoring his work in 2018.The striker failed to make the top 15 strikers list, which featured fellow Frenchman Antoine Griezmann and former Real Madrid teammate Cristiano Ronaldo, yet Benzema took the news relatively well as he made a joke out of the situation.”L’Equipe, my friends, can I be the 16th?” he wrote on Instagram.Benzema on the paper’s 2018 best strikers shortlist: “L’Equipe, my friends, can I be the 16th?Should’ve just let it go ma man pic.twitter.com/wlaZL4aOiT— (@Ultra_Suristic) January 4, 2019 About the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

a month agoQuique Sanchez Flores insists Watford have plenty to play for

first_imgQuique Sanchez Flores insists Watford have plenty to play forby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveNew Watford boss Quique Sanchez Flores insists there’s plenty to play for this season.Sanchez Flores thinks the decision to bring him back in place of Gracia demonstrates the club’s ambition and shows why they can achieve “something special”. “I never see Watford at the bottom,” he said.”Three years ago, we were never there. The last three years, it was impossible to think about that, but football’s very hard right now. It’s very equal, very even and everything is pure competition, so everything is possible.”We need to go out of this position as soon as possible.”The ambition is the same. This is a club that is very clear about the way they want to grow and so I realise of course they have changed a lot of things, the training ground, the players, the squad.”But [what they want] is exactly the same what they wanted from me three years ago.”Now it’s a little bit different because they’re established in the Premier League, they want to keep going in the same category, so the pressure is the same, but the squad and the objective of the club they are different.”I’m confident we can work together and we can do something special.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

a month agoLiverpool fullback Robertson quits Twitter after Napoli backlash

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Liverpool fullback Robertson quits Twitter after Napoli backlashby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveLiverpool left-back Andrew Robertson may have deactivated his Twitter account.The decision could be connected to the Reds’ 2-0 defeat at Napoli on Tuesday.The Scot gave away a late penalty when he was adjudged to have fouled Jose Callejon in the box, with Dries Mertens slotting home from the spot.Fernando Llorente then nipped in ahead of Robertson to seal victory for the home side in stoppage time.Reds boss Jurgen Klopp hit out at the decision to award the the penalty – and the failure to overturn it through VAR – after the game, although former Premier League referee Mark Clattenburg has claimed it was the right decision.The Mirror reports a search for his Twitter account ‘@andrewrobertso5’ shows up no results, although his Instagram account is still online at the time of writing. last_img read more

The 5 Best Moments From The 1st Episode Of Ohio State Football’s “Scarlet & Gray Days”

first_imgPromotion for Ohio State's scarlet and gray days.Twitter/@BigTenNetworkThe first episode of Big Ten Network’s Hard Knocks-style documentary series about Ohio State football, Scarlet & Gray Days, premiered tonight, and it promises to be an incredibly fun look inside the defending national champions as we head towards the season. The episode highlighted a few players, including quarterback Cardale Jones, QB-turned-receiver and h-back Braxton Miller, and linebacker Josh Perry. Here are our five favorite moments from the pilot episode.1.) Josh Perry describes his Ronda Rousey-based beef with Cardale Jones:Cardale may have the shirt, but Perry has the photo. We expect this to be a recurring storyline.2.) Braxton Miller gets burgers and hot dogs, while Cardale Jones gets the first class meal:Lesson learned: even former Big Ten Players of the Year have to eat the worse meal if they oversleep before a workout.3.) Big brothers are chosen for Ohio State freshmen:Very cool, and funny look inside the process.4.) Cornerbacks coach Kerry Coombs trash talks h-back Jalin Marshall:Every year when HBO does Hard Knocks, one of the assistant coaches is a breakout star. For Scarlet & Gray Days, it looks like Coombs will be that guy.5.) Urban Meyer coaches up Braxton Miller at wide receiver:Is there a more intriguing skill position player in the country right now?Overall, very fun first episode from Big Ten Network. This will certainly help us get through these long last few weeks before football officially begins.last_img read more

‘Tottenham will not sign Rossi to act as Kane cover’

first_imgTottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has dismissed rumours that his side could be ready to move for Italy international striker Giuseppe Rossi as a short-term replacement for Harry Kane.England forward Kane has scored 14 times in 22 Premier League outings for Spurs this season but faces an extended period on the sidelines due to an ankle injury. He is not expected back before the beginning of March.Additionally, they are temporarily without Son Heung-Min, who is away on Asian Cup duty with South Korea. 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? As such, there has been speculation that the White Hart Lane side, who remain at Wembley as their ground redevelopment has run overschedule, could move for 31-year-old Rossi, a free agent since leaving Genoa in the summer.“There are many names that appear in every transfer window,” said Pochettino, who became the first Premier League manager in history not to make a single signing during the summer transfer window of 2018.“I think he is another name to add on the list but it is only a rumour. We have not considered him.“I don’t think it’s a possibility.”New Jersey-born Rossi started his senior career with Manchester United in 2004 but truly rose to prominence during his time with Villarreal in La Liga. However, his development was stunted by a series of serious injuries, which effectively cost him three seasons.Fiorentina signed him up and, during the 2013-14 campaign, reaped the rewards of his goalscoring instincts as he notched 16 times in 21 games, though a knee injury struck in January when he was the league’s top scorer.He has struggled to regain his full capacities since, spending time on loan at Levante and Celta Vigo and most recently the second half of the 2017-18 season with Genoa.During his time with the Serie A side, he tested positive for the banned substance dorzolamide and, though he strenuously denied any wrongdoing, was given a warning.In a bid to regain his fitness, he has recently been training with Manchester United, who are now managed by his former team-mate at Old Trafford, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.He has won 27 caps for Italy and has scored nine goals.last_img read more

Beating Chelsea did Arsenal no favours – Merson

first_imgLosing to Chelsea “would’ve done Arsenal a favour”, says Paul Merson, with the Gunners not good enough to compete for a top-four finish in the Premier League and chase down Europa League glory.Unai Emery’s side, who have raised their game for the big occasion of late, secured derby spoils when beating their London rivals 2-0 at Emirates Stadium last time out.That result has seen them close to within three points of the Blues and the final Champions League spot. 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? Forcing their way into that pack is considered to be a priority, having seen Arsene Wenger’s reign end with failures in successive seasons, while they are also still in the hunt for a continental prize.Arsenal have reached the last 32 of the Europa League, where they will face BATE, and Merson believes an enforced narrowing of the focus on that competition would have aided the Gunners’ cause for 2019.He told Sky Sports: “It would’ve done Arsenal a favour to get beat the other day, I think, and then they could have put all their eggs into the Europa League.“Now they’ve got to go for the league too but I just don’t think they’re good enough.“They’re hot and cold, you’ve got to be consistent. One minute they’re getting well-beaten by West Ham, but then they’re well-beating Chelsea. The manager’s got to be scratching his head.“This is Arsenal, they need to be playing Champions League football, not Thursday night.“I think Chelsea will edge it, but only just. It’s more the three-point headstart if I’m being honest.”Unai Emery Arsenal 2018-19Merson added on the inconsistency which could work against Arsenal, with Manchester United also in the top-four picture after enjoying a resurgence under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: “Arsenal will get beaten by a team in the bottom half next week probably, they were getting beaten by West Ham last week and they were very poor.“They won’t have the consistency, I think Manchester United will get found out – they can’t keep on being that lucky, and I say lucky but they’re poor at the back.“Tottenham’s games they’ve got without [Harry] Kane are winnable, so I don’t see a problem with them, the top two will look after themselves and I think Chelsea will get it.“Man for man they’re a lot better than Arsenal I think. Defensively, they’ll be more reliable before the end of the season.“Manchester United have got a couple of nice games coming up, they’ve had some nice games, but I’m a great believer that what follows easy games is difficult games. What about when PSG get hold of them?”Arsenal’s next game is set to see them take on United, with a heavyweight FA Cup fourth round clash to be staged at Emirates Stadium on Friday. Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

McTominay: Champions League was a tough watch

first_imgScott McTominay says that he is proud of Scotland team-mate Andrew Robertson’s Champions League title with Liverpool, but the Manchester United midfielder admitted the Reds’ win was a “tough watch”.Robertson and Liverpool lifted the Champions League title on Saturday as the Reds topped Tottenham 2-0 in the finale.The Scottish fullback started and went all 90 minutes as an early Mohamed Salah finish from the penalty spot and a late Divock Origi clincher sealed the club’s sixth Champions League title. 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? McTominay, a Manchester United academy product, says he takes pride in seeing one of his countrymen shine on the biggest stage, but his Scotland team-mate’s achievement was the only positive from Saturday’s result.“I’m a Man United man through and through so I can’t lie it wasn’t easy, it was a tough watch,” McTominay told the Herald. “But it was still good to see a fellow Scotsman on the pitch and beautiful to see what he’s gone through from 2012 to now.”Robertson is set to join up with Scotland in the coming days, having been given a break to recover from Liverpool’s Champions League run.The defender has served as Scotland’s captain, having earned 29 caps for the team since making his debut in 2014.McTominay says his team-mate’s achievement will serve as inspiration for the rest of the team going forward.“It’s amazing for him and we’re relishing getting him back and hopefully kicking on in a Scotland jersey,” said the 22-year-old midfielder, who made 16 Premier League and three Champions League appearances for the Red Devils this campaign.“If that’s not inspiration for the whole team right there I don’t know what is.“He’s done incredibly well and that’s my aim – to be replicating something like that winning big trophies and hopefully playing in major tournaments in the future with Scotland.”Scotland are set to host Cyprus on Saturday in a Euro 2020 qualifier before visiting Belgium on June 11. Subscribe to Goal’s Liverpool Correspondent Neil Jones’ weekly email bringing you the best Liverpool FC writing from around the weblast_img read more

Man Utd target Maguire no closer to move

first_imgManchester United target Harry Maguire is no closer to departing Leicester City for the Red Devils, according to manager Brendan Rodgers.The England international featured for the full 90 minutes of the Foxes’ pre-season friendly with Stoke at the weekend, as speculation continues to swirl around his future.Maguire, who joined Leicester in the wake of their famous Premier League title-winning season, has been a standout performer for the club since his arrival, and was a key man for his country at last year’s World Cup in Russia. Article continues below Editors’ Picks 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? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Since then, he has been consistently linked with a move to Old Trafford, first when Jose Mourinho was at the helm and subsequently after Ole Gunnar Solskjaer took the reins.The club, as well as rivals and champions Manchester City, both tabled offers earlier this year for the 26-year-old, which Leicester subsequently rejected.United however have been undeterred and are widely tipped to get their man before the transfer window closes in August.However, former Celtic boss Rodgers has described himself as “relaxed” over the rumour mill that suggests the centre-back’s impending departure.”He’s been brilliant since the first day of pre-season,” the manager stated.”There’s a lot of speculation around Harry, but he’s just got on with it. Like I’ve always said, we’re all pretty relaxed with it.”We’re looking to prepare the whole team and squad and Harry’s a part of that. He was excellent [Saturday], he’s working very hard.”There’s no discussion. I know you guys [the media] are looking for updates, but there’s no change from the other night.”Regarding whether Leicester would point-blank refuse to sell after a certain peiod,  due to the club’s lack of time to secure a replacement, he added: “I haven’t really thought about that.”We have two weeks left to go in the window for all of the players. I think it’s just a case of everyone staying focused.”Rodgers will see his side open their new Premier League campaign at the King Power Stadium on August 11, when they host last year’s surprise package Wolves.Nuno Santo’s side will be hoping to replicate the Foxes’ own post-promotion feats and transform themselves into a genuine major top-flight side.last_img read more

‘De Gea is staying now’ – Schmeichel says deal done

first_imgDavid de Gea “is staying” at Manchester United, says Peter Schmeichel, with the former goalkeeper claiming the Spaniard has been “tied down” despite no official announcement of a new contract.The future of the Red Devils’ No. 1 has been a subject of much speculation for several months.De Gea has entered the final year of his current deal at Old Trafford and initially appeared reluctant to commit to fresh terms. Article continues below Editors’ Picks 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? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? It has, however, been suggested that a long-term extension has been thrashed out with the 28-year-old.Schmeichel says that agreement is done, with United able to rest easy after securing the services of a talismanic presence and four-time Player of the Year.The Red Devils legend told The Mirror: “David was a great signal that we start off with arguably our best performer over the last five years.“We have tied him down, he is staying and now we move on and build on that.”While De Gea appears to have been talked into staying, United have parted with the vast experience of Ander Herrera and Antonio Valencia at the end of their respective contracts.Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Manchester UnitedMoves are being made to counter those departures, with Schmeichel pleased to see former team-mate Ole Gunnar Solskjaer turning to youth for inspiration.The Dane added: “We had a few guys who have been instrumental like Antonio Valencia and Ander Herrera who have left with their contracts running out.“They have had to be replaced by Manchester United youth which is a very position thing.“[Aaron] Wan-Bissaka has come in and Daniel James who are good exciting young British players.“They are still a bit raw but massively talented and that is proper Man United DNA. You find those kind of players and develop them.“I also know Ole has worked really hard on getting the players fitter than they have ever been and that is going to stand them in good stead.“That is going to be a big difference to last season and the season before. I think it is about longevity – duration not only in games but in the course of the season as well.“The fitter you are, the longer you last. It is an interesting season and I am really looking forward to it.“We all want Man United to do a lot better. I am very positive we will see a big improvement.“But I don’t think you change from being one to the next over the course of just one summer.”United could only muster a sixth-place finish in 2018-19, meaning they are without Champions League football once again, but opened the current campaign with a morale-boosting 4-0 victory over Chelsea.last_img read more

An Early Bowl Game Is Changing Its Location This Year

first_imgAn interior view of the Tampa bay Buccaneers stadium.Raymond James Stadium scoreboard and pirate ship as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers host the Baltimore Ravens September 10, 2006 in Tampa. The Ravens defeated the Bucs 27 – 0. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)The Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl is on the move. It isn’t going very far though.For the last decade, the bowl has changed its name many times but was always played at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg. However, it will head to Tampa Bay this year, according to Brett McMurphy.The game will be played at Raymond James Stadium, home of the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the annual Outback Bowl.Sources: After 10 years, Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl is leaving St. Pete’s Tropicana Field for Tampa’s Raymond James Stadium https://t.co/rXokphvjNJ— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) May 23, 2018According to McMurphy, attendance is a major reason for this change. The game hasn’t topped 17,000 fans in each of the last three seasons.What the game has lacked in fan support, it has more than made up for in names. In the past, the bowl has been known as the magicJack St. Petersburg Bowl; St. Petersburg Bowl Presented by Beef ‘O’ Brady’s; Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl; Bitcoin St. Petersburg Bowl and St. Petersburg Bowl.It was renamed the Gasparilla Bowl in 2017, with Bad Boy Mowers signing a three-year naming rights deal.The Gasparilla Bowl is typically played in the week before Christmas as one of the earlier bowl games, although it was held on December 26 from 2014-16.  Temple won last year’s game over FIU by a score of 28-3.Past MVPs of the St. Petersburg/Beef O’Brady’s/Gasparilla Bowl include current NFL players Mohamed Sanu (Rutgers), Jacoby Brissett (NC State) and Blake Bortles (UCF).last_img read more

Google Maps Is Now Taunting Ohio State’s Football Program

first_imgAn Ohio State Buckeyes cheerleader running with a flag.MIAMI GARDENS, FL – JANUARY 03: A cheerleader runs onto the field with an Ohio State Buckeyes flag prior to the Discover Orange Bowl against the Clemson Tigers at Sun Life Stadium on January 3, 2014 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)It’s been several days since Ohio State were upset by Purdue, but the jokes at the Buckeyes’ expense have hardly died down.The latest outlet to poke fun at Ohio State’s expense is Google Maps, who per an image captured on Reddit, changed the name of Purdue’s football stadium to reflect the stunning result.The venue, Ross-Ade Stadium, was found on Google Maps to have been renamed “Nutcracker Stadium” – a clear reference to Purdue’s 49-20 win on Saturday.As of writing, the change is still visible on Google Maps.Google Maps has apparently changed the name of Purdue’s Ross-Ade Stadium ? #BoilerUp #OSUvsPUR ? pic.twitter.com/w9ygEEFNbN— RedditCFB (@RedditCFB) October 22, 2018Purdue took a 7-0 lead in the game towards the end of the first quarter and never lost it the rest of the game.QB David Blough and RB D.J. Knox combined for six TDs. In the final minutes of the fourth quarter, Markus Bailey intercepted Ohio State QB Dwayne Haskins for a 41-yard TD.The Boilermakers have won four straight games after starting the season 0-3.last_img read more

Nick Saban Reveals Punishment For Alabama Player Arrested This Weekend

first_imgA closeup of Nick Saban during a press conference.TAMPA, FL – JANUARY 09: Head coach Nick Saban of the Alabama Crimson Tide speaks during a press conference after the Clemson Tigers defeated the Alabama Crimson Tide 35-31 in the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship Game at Raymond James Stadium on January 9, 2017 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)Over the weekend, an Alabama football player was arrested on suspicion of DUI. Redshirt freshman offensive lineman Hunter Brannon arrested in Tuscaloosa, Ala. early Sunday morning.Head coach Nick Saban released a statement about the player’s arrest on Sunday.“We are very disappointed any time a player makes a choice that leads to this kind of behavior,” Saban said. “We are still in the process of gathering all of the details on the situation, and we will evaluate what we need to do in terms of appropriate discipline as we move forward.”On Tuesday night, Saban revealed the action took to discipline the player. Brannon has been suspended from the team and is not allowed to dress for games.Nick Saban: We suspended Hunter Brannon from the team. He’s not going to dress for any games right now.Said he’ll have some things to do behind the scenes (police ride around, community service, etc.)— Marq Burnett (@Marq_Burnett) October 23, 2018Alabama moved to 8-0 on Saturday with an impressive victory over Tennessee. The Crimson Tide get the weekend off before its hardest matchup of the season when the team travels to Death Valley to take on LSU.last_img read more

Major Head Coach Calls Out His Conference

first_imgPenn State football players sing to celebrate win.STATE COLLEGE, PA – NOVEMBER 05: Penn State Nittany Lions players and fans sing to celebrate the team’s win over Iowa Hawkeyes on November 5, 2016 at Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania. Penn State defeats Iowa 41-14. (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)A major head coach has called out his own conference following the College Football Playoff selection committee’s decision on Sunday.The Big Ten’s champion has missed the College Football Playoff for the third season in a row. Ohio State has missed it in back-to-back seasons and Penn State missed it in 2016.Penn State head coach James Franklin believes the Big Ten needs to take a serious look at its makeup and scheduling process moving forward.The Big Ten plays nine league games – unlike the SEC – and the East Division has been significantly more top heavy than the West Division.“We’ve got to look at our model and see it if makes sense, especially on our side of the conference,” Franklin told reporters on Sunday. “We’re beating each other up week in and week out.”Franklin continued:“Obviously when you play eight conference games, then each school has a little bit more ability to schedule what they think gives them the best chance to be undefeated,” Franklin told reporters. “In my mind, that’s what you need to do. You need to do everything in your power to give yourself the best chance to be undefeated at the end of the season.”It really comes down to one key point for Franklin (and, likely, the rest of the league’s coaches).“Then, we’ve got to ask [in the Big Ten], are we putting our programs in the Big Ten in the best position to compete for national championships?”At this point, the answer to that question is probably “no.”last_img read more