Reports: Barcelona interested in Neymar only to keep Lionel Messi happy

Highlights – Abahani Limited Dhaka vs 4.25 SC

Barcelona appear to be fighting tooth and nail with arch rivals Real Madrid to sign Neymar. But focus on the word appear before you read the rest of this story.

Le Parisien claim that though Barcelona have been in the news for their constant interest in Neymar, it may only be to appease one man – Lionel Messi.

Reports claim that Messi and Neymar developed a strong friendship during their time together at Barcelona, and after learning that the Brazilian was interested in returning to the Nou Camp, Messi has been keen to link up with him once more.

However, Barcelona realise that any chance of signing Neymar would mean they would have to part with as much as 222 million euros, which is what they received to sell him to PSG in the first place.

Moreover, there are still three years left on Neymar’s contract, and PSG boss Thomas Tuchel has categorically stated that there will be no sale till there isn’t a replacement in place.

The fact that the Catalans preferred to sign Antoine Griezmann from Atletico Madrid for big money earlier in the summer transfer window means that their interest in Neymar was never that strong to begin with, and this sudden interest might just have been a bluff all along.

 

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WATCH: Lionel Messi trains extra hard despite being unfit for Barcelona opener

‘If it was my team, it would be a ‘no’ from me.’ Steve McManaman doesn’t back Neymar’s mooted La Liga return…

Barcelona will play their first La Liga match on Friday against Athletic Bilbao, and Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde has made it clear that he does not plan to risk an injured Lionel Messi.

Despite the advice of his manager, Messi is out training extra hard in order to be fit, as can be seen in a video of his training regime shared by OTRO on Instagram.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Beware @laliga defences, @leomessi is aiming to come back stronger than ever 👊🏻

A post shared by OTRO (@otro) on

Messi can be seen taking quick kicks of the football while on a sandy surface while practicing volleys, while also focusing on sharpness and focus the whole time.

The Argentine suffered a calf injury during Barcelona’s pre-season tour of the United States, and Valverde believes risking a player like him in the opening game of the season is not worth it.

“We never like to risk any players and much less someone like Leo,” Valverde said in a press conference.

“He still hasn’t returned to training with the team and while we are happy with his progress, individual training is very different to playing a match. We are going to wait and see.”

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WATCH: Nick Kyrgios slams Rafa Nadal after being handed time penalty, fined $113,000 at Cincinnati Open

Shapovalov powers past Sandgren at Winston-Salem

It was during his Cincinnati Open 2019 match against Karen Khachanov that Nick Kyrgios lost his head, not for the first time, and went on a verbal tirade against Nadal after being handed a penalty for taking too long between points.

There was drama throughout the match on the part of the controversial tennis star, who was initially given a warning but continued to run his mouth at the “poor” officiating during the contest.

He even proceeded to head off the court at one point, only to smash two racquets in frustration and come back onto the court of play to continue the match.

After being handed a time violation, Kyrgios claimed he was treated differently to stars such as Rafael Nadal.

“So you’re telling me that Rafa plays that quick?” he asked the chair umpire.

“Every service point, that quick?

“Every time? That’s hilarious, bro.

“That’s hilarious. Rafa’s playing that quick?

“I missed the ball, the guy starts the clock.

“Bro, if Rafa plays that quick, I’m retiring from tennis.

“Absolute rubbish, rubbish. Disgrace.

“Get me some footage of Rafa playing that quick, I’ll shut my mouth and never speak again.

“This sport’s biased as s**t.”

Kyrgios went on to lose the match 6-7 (3-7) 7-6 (7-4) 6-2, and BBC report that he was also fined $113,000 for five different incidents of unsportsmanlike conduct.

ATP are also considering a suspension as well as further fines to tighten the noose on such deplorable behaviour.

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Fans left in shock as Roger Federer is destroyed by qualifier at Cincinnati Open

Shapovalov powers past Sandgren at Winston-Salem

Fans watched in amazement as Roger failed to get going in the match, and couldn’t turn his fortunes around in the second set either.

The round of 16 matches ended 6-3, 6-4 in the favour of the Russian, leading to fans venting their frustrations out on Twitter and other social media platforms.

What does this mean for Federer and his plans of conquering the US Open?

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Reports: Barcelona star refuses to be part of Neymar swap deal

Highlights – Abahani Limited Dhaka vs 4.25 SC

Neymar Jr. appears to be inching closer and closer to a move back to former side Barcelona, but one small hiccup may have come up that could stall the transfer for the time being.

El Chiringuito are reporting that current Barcelona star Ivan Rakitic has flatly refused from being a part of any swap deal that could see Neymar struggle to secure a seamless exit from the Parisians.

Reports had earlier suggested that Barcelona were negotiating with PSG about including Philippe Coutinho and Ivan Rakitic in a swap deal that would see Neymar return to the Nou Camp.

While that did appear to be promising, Rakitic’s unwillingness to make the shift from Catalonia to Paris could cause some complications in the transfer.

If the Croatian cannot be convinced into leaving, Barcelona would most likely have to rely on spending extra cash along with selling Coutinho to the Ligue 1 Champions in order to make the blockbuster deal stick.

Real Madrid are keeping a close eye on the situation, and are far from out of the race themselves, despite signing Eden Hazard already in the transfer window.

Reports: Neymar to join La Liga giants in 48 hours

Highlights – Abahani Limited Dhaka vs 4.25 SC

Neymar Jr. could be set for a move back to Spain, and it could all be decided in as little as 48 hours. After reports emerged of his representatives negotiating a move, it appears this could all be done soon.

Mundo Deportivo are claiming that a negotiation has taken place between Nasser bin Ghanim Al-Khelaifi of Paris Saint-Germain (PSG), and Josep Bartomeu of Barcelona, leading to some healthy discussions about the future of Neymar.

Since the Brazilian has his heart set on moving back to the Nou Camp, Al-Khelaifi may be forced to relent, and let the superstar forward move on, even though the club might have to take a financial hit because of it.

‘Our relationship with Neymar hasn’t changed’ – Verratti

The report also states, however, that PSG are awaiting the stance of Real Madrid, with Florentino Perez also keen on signing Neymar, since manager Zinedine Zidane wants more fire power up front to add to new signings Eden Hazard and Luka Jovic.

It is expected that Los Blancos could come up with an offer that is closer to the 222 million euros that PSG paid to sign the 27-year-old from Barcelona a couple of years ago, and if that valuation is met in cash, then PSG would sell him to Madrid.

As for Barcelona, it is likely that their deal could come in the form of a swap, with Philippe Coutinho heading to the Parisians in return.

Former Real Madrid star slams Manchester United signing Harry Maguire as ‘worst player on the pitch’

Silverware with Liverpool or Man Utd? Holiday in Vietnam or Thailand? Michael Owen is in the FIRING LINE!

Harry Maguire put on a man of the match display for Manchester United in his debut for the club against Chelsea, but one man is having none of it.

Speaking on Sky Sports, former Real Madrid star Rafael van der Vaart slammed Harry Maguire, and noted that on a previous occasion, he felt the central defender was the ‘worst player on the pitch’.

‘I was working for Dutch television during the Uefa Nations League and I remember we were saying ‘Harry Maguire was by far the worst player on the pitch’,’ he said to Sky Sports. ‘

‘Then two months later he signs for £80 million!’

The statement was made before Maguire took to the pitch at Old Trafford against Chelsea, where he impressed United fans as well as manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

The Red Devils pulled off a stunning 4-0 win in their first Premier League game, with goals from Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial, and another new signing Daniel James.

Alongside Victor Lindelof, Harry Maguire turned out to be one of the highlights for United, who made the former Leicester City man the most expensive defender in the history of the game.

Reports: Real Madrid line up former Liverpool star as Neymar alternative

Highlights – Abahani Limited Dhaka vs 4.25 SC

Real Madrid do not seem to be done in their transfer business for the summer window, and are still on the look out for players to bring in.

The La Liga giants have been linked with Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) superstar Neymar Jr. repeatedly in this window, but haven’t been able to reach an agreement just yet.

The high transfer fees and possibility of a cash plus swap deal is the likely reason behind it, but it appears that Madrid could have a cheaper option in mind.

Don Balon are reporting that AC Milan star Suso could be considered by Zinedine Zidane as a possible choice instead of spending big money on Neymar or even Paul Pogba from Manchester United.

Suso could be available for as little as 40 million euros, making him a lucrative option for Real, who have already spent big on players such as Eden Hazard and Luka Jovic earlier in the window.

Moreover, Suso has experience playing in La Liga, having spent time at Almeria, and even starred in the Premier League for Liverpool before making his move.

The Spaniard recently scored in a pre season game for AC Milan against Manchester United in the International Champions Cup (ICC), and is being considered as an option by top European clubs.

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Reports: Manchester United can still sign Premier League striker as Romelu Lukaku replacement

Highlights – Abahani Limited Dhaka vs 4.25 SC

The Premier League transfer window may have shut, but Manchester United can still add to their attacking arsenal despite not making any signings on deadline day.

Corriere Dello Sport and Football Italia are reporting that United are keen on signing Fernando Llorente from Tottenham Hotspur on a free transfer, which is not hampered by the transfer window being shut.

Since Llorente will be out of a contract at Spurs, he isn’t tied down by the transfer window, and is reportedly demanding a salary of €4million to join the Red Devils.

Feature: Romelu Lukaku to Inter Milan – all the stats!

Another club interested in acquiring his services is Napoli, who want to also sign Mauro Icardi from Inter Milan, but could face competition from fellow Serie A giants Juventus.

It remains to be seen which club will be able to land the Spaniard, who is finding a regular starting spot in Tottenham’s team a massive difficulty, owed solely to the fact that Harry Kane has been in unbelievable form.

Spurs have invested well in the transfer window themselves, signing Tanguy Ndombele and Ryan Sessegnon to supplement their potent attack, while also bringing in Giovani Lo Celso this summer.

United have had to deal with the departure of Romelu Lukaku to Inter, and could make Llorente their late priority.

Neymar reveals he predicted his two goals for Barcelona against PSG in epic UCL clash

Devastated Lennon says Celtic as a ‘collective’ are to blame for Champions League elimination

The Brazilian scored two goals in Barcelona’s incredible comeback which saw them win 6-1 in the second leg, despite losing 4-0 in the first leg in France.

Now, Neymar has revealed that he predicted he would score a brace in the second leg as he discussed the heroic moment.

“Two of my friends said that PSG had a great team – and they did – and that they had already qualified, this and that…” he told DAZN.

 

“But I got up and said: ‘You are my friends, you work with me, but it seems you don’t believe we can turn this game around. We will reverse this situation, and I promise you two goals’.

 

“In that game, the most striking goal was Sergi Roberto’s,” Neymar continued.

 

“It was the goal that made us go through. It’s the goal that will be remembered in history and I’m happy to have made the move, but his goal was special – that’s when the Camp Nou exploded.

 

“That was the most important goal. I think that, in terms of excitement, in terms of making everyone crazy, that was one of the most important goals in Barcelona history.”

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Reports: How Real Madrid can sign Neymar ahead of Barcelona

Highlights – Abahani Limited Dhaka vs 4.25 SC

Real Madrid may have failed to sign Paul Pogba from Manchester United, but they might just be able to land Neymar Jr. in this summer transfer window, and that too ahead of their rivals Barcelona.

Neymar initially wanted to secure a move back to the Blaugrana, but Marca now claim that the primary objective for the Brazilian isn’t to join his former employers, but to simply leave Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) this summer.

It will not be easy, but his route to Real Madrid could be complete if the Galacticos agree with the demand reportedly put forth in front of them.

The report says that PSG want to make up the 222 million euros they spent to sign the 27-year-old from Barca, and are willing to accept half of that amount in cash only.

The rest of the money would have to come from player sales, and that could mean Gareth Bale could be one of the names included as a makeweight to make the move stick.

The Parisians even look at Casemiro as a good option, but Madrid are not interested in selling him, which could mean Keylor Navas might be looked at as a possible alternative to be sold to the Ligue 1 Champions this summer.

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Reports: Cristiano Ronaldo tells Juventus which striker to sign instead of Romelu Lukaku

Highlights – Abahani Limited Dhaka vs 4.25 SC

Juventus have looked close to signing Romelu Lukaku in this transfer window from Manchester United, but now appear to have lost him to Inter Milan. And Cristiano Ronaldo might have an alternative in mind.

La Gazzetta Dello Sport are reporting that the Portuguese superstar is keen on linking up with Mauro Icardi at the Bianconeri, and considers him a more suitable option up front than Lukaku.

Icardi has faced his own issues at Inter Milan last season, even being stripped of his captaincy and falling out with his teammates and board after a lengthy saga.

But Ronaldo believes he could add something extra to the Juve team, who look set to lose Paulo Dybala to Tottenham Hotspur after the Argentine reportedly agreed terms for a move to Tottenham Hotspur.

Icardi, in many ways, could be the perfect man to replace Dybala, with his goalscoring prowess and ability to link up well with fellow attacking players, that might be what Ronaldo also needs in a partner up top.

With Lukaku now entering the Inter squad, and Antonio Conte not willing to give Icardi a chance at the Milan club, it would make a lot of sense for all involved to ensure that this particular deal pulls through.

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Reports: Cristiano Ronaldo pushing for “new Messi” signing ahead of Manchester City

Highlights – Abahani Limited Dhaka vs 4.25 SC

Cristiano Ronaldo is reportedly pushing hard to ensure Juventus grab the “new Lionel Messi” ahead of Manchester City and Pep Guardiola.

Don Balon report that Ronaldo wants Juve to sign Thiago Almada from Velez Sarsfield in Argentina, because of the similarities in play between Almada and the great Leo Messi.

The report suggests that Pep Guardiola is very keen on bringing the Argentine to Manchester City before his transfer fees goes through the roof, but Ronaldo wants the kid at Juventus.

Former Manchester United star Gabriel Heinze is the current manager at Velez Sarsfield, and is looking for the right offer to send the 18-year-old to Europe, with pretty much everyone convinced he has it in him to make it big.

The former defender even admitted that top clubs were interested in signing the teenager, and that he does not know what the future holds.

“I would love to tell the whole truth, but sometimes I can’t do it because I am responsible for a group. This week was the Thiago we all know. He spent a few very special days, but normal, with all this,” he was quoted as saying.

It remains to be seen whether Ronaldo or Guardiola can convince Almada to come to Europe.

 

Reports: Cristiano Ronaldo pushing for another Juventus star to be sold after Paulo Dybala

Highlights – Abahani Limited Dhaka vs 4.25 SC

Cristiano Ronaldo appears to have a say in the transfers Juventus are making this season, and also appears to be involved in the decisions made to sell certain big names.

Don Balon reports that Ronaldo may have been one of the reasons behind Paulo Dybala being linked with a move to Manchester United, with Romelu Lukaku heading the other way.

The report also suggests that he could be pushing for another Juventus star to move to the exit door this summer, with Gonzalo Higuain reportedly the man CR7 wants out.

Whether it is something to do with Argentine players or just Ronaldo wanting to be the new number 9 at the Bianconeri, there does appear to be a similarity between the two possible departures from the club.

Mario Mandzukic is another player that Juventus have in the strike department, but he could be included in the Dybala-Lukaku swap deal, which would make the sale of Higuain a tad bit unnecessary.

That being said, it is possible that stints at clubs such as Chelsea last season might have been the catalyst for a permanent move away from Turin for Higuain, who is very capable of providing regular goals up front when in the best of form.