October 11, 2021 at 6:28 pm #1479485
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Fb:Celestine Oghosa OsaroboOctober 11, 2021 at 6:38 pm #1479487
Lionel Messi hails Emi Martinez as ‘one of the best in the world’ as Aston Villa goalkeeper keeps Luis Suarez at bay in Argentina victory
Emiliano Martinez has been hailed as ‘one of the world’s best goalkeepers’ by none other than Lionel Messi.
The Aston Villa goalkeeper has established himself as the number one goalkeeper for Argentina after years of uncertainty in net, having now made 11 caps for his country after impressing against Uruguay on Sunday evening.
Messi and Martinez have formed an unlikely bromance
He was imperious in goal, twice saving from Luis Suarez and earning a clean sheet as La Albiceleste as they stamped their authority on second place in their World Cup qualifying group with a 3-0 victory.
Messi, Rodrigo De Paul and Lautaro Martinez found the net – and the PSG superstar hailed his teammate for his brilliant display.
“Dibu [Emiliano] Martinez is fundamental.” Messi said, speaking to TNT Sports.
“When they come to him, he always responds.
Martinez has been a revelation in net for Argentina
“He established himself in goal and we have one of the best goalkeepers in the world.”
Eyebrows were raised when Arsenal allowed Martinez to leave for Villa for a £20million fee last year.
The goalkeeper had spent a decade at the Emirates and just started to prove his worth before he was flogged to the Midlands club.
Mikel Arteta revealed that the strapped-for-cash Gunners simply had to sell him with the more fresh-faced Bernd Leno seen as the long-term number one between the sticks.
Martinez, however, arguably proved he is the better goalkeeper last season – and he threw shade at his former club last year by saying he believed his move to Villa was a step up, rather than down.
Martinez was a back-up at Arsenal not long ago
He said: “They were all saying it was a step down in my career, but I always said it was a step up.
“When I decided to come to Villa it was because I trusted the manager and the club’s ambitions, and I knew how big Villa are.
“Some people do not realise how big Aston Villa are. I said on day one my ambition is to be in Europe with Aston Villa.
“I want to take this club as high as possible and we are on the right path. Can it be done this season? Yes. But we have to work for it.”October 11, 2021 at 6:44 pm #1479490
Chelsea suffer blow as Romelu Lukaku withdraws from Belgium squad due to ‘muscle fatigue’ with Eden Hazard also dropping out
Romelu Lukaku has withdrawn from the Belgium squad and will head back to Chelsea because
of ‘muscle fatigue’.
Lukaku scored in Belgium’s Nations League semi-final defeat to France this week, but will not feature in their third-place play-off.
Lukaku has withdrawn from the Belgium team due to ‘muscle fatigue’
The Chelsea striker had a goal ruled out in the closing stages before the world champions went on to get a 90th minute goal to win 3-2.
Manager Roberto Martinez confirmed the 28-year-old was not at 100 per cent and the decision was taken to send him back to the Premier League club.
“It’s an overload. He didn’t feel 100 per cent to play tomorrow. It’s soreness in his tissue,” Martinez said at a pre-match news conference on Saturday.
Lukaku is Belgium’s record goalscorer
“Every decision taken involves both medical departments together for the good of the player.”
Martinez also confirmed that Real Madrid’s Eden Hazard was suffering from a similar problem and will also not play against Italy.
Lukaku returned to Chelsea this summer in a £97.5million deal, smashing the club’s transfer record.
Hazard is also out of the Belgium squad
The striker has started well with four goals in nine total appearances, including three in six in the Premier League.
The Blues will now be sweating on the fitness of their star man ahead of their next match.
They face Brentford next Saturday at 5.30pm.October 11, 2021 at 8:17 pm #1479502
Newcastle next manager latest with Bruce facing sack, Liverpool suffer Diogo Jota injury blow, Manchester United’s Phil Jones on ‘toxic’ abuse – latest football news and transfer rumours
The fallout continues from Newcastle’s £305million takeover by the Saudi Public Investment Fund.
Attention is now turning to who the club might sign during the January transfer window and who may replace Steve Bruce as manager.
While fans are dreaming of superstars from across, the names linked are closer to home and include James Tarkowski and Jesse Lingard.
Brendan Rodgers, Steven Gerrard and Graham Potter have all been linked with the job for the newly wealthy club, who boast owners with a combined wealth of around £320billion.
We’ll have all the build up to Home Nations’ next international fixtures with Wales in action today before England, Scotland and Northern Ireland all play on Tuesday in their World Cup qualifiers.October 11, 2021 at 8:20 pm #1479503
Jorginho ‘could win Ballon d’Or’ as Danny Murphy backs Chelsea and Italy star to become first Premier League winner since Cristiano Ronaldo at Manchester United in 2008
Danny Murphy reckons Jorginho has a great chance of winning the Ballon d’Or following his historic year with Chelsea and Italy.
Jorginho has been absolutely brilliant in 2021, orchestrating Italy to a glorious triumph at Euro 2020 as well as winning the Champions League under Thomas Tuchel at Stamford Bridge.
Jorginho certainly had the best year in terms of silverware, picking up two of football’s biggest prizes
Jorginho played a pivotal role anchoring Italy’s midfield on their way to Euro 2020 glory
Just last year, the 29-year-old’s career was going in another trajectory as he found himself frozen out by Frank Lampard before he was sacked in January.
But Tuchel’s arrival has elevated Jorginho to the very top of the game, with the German, Roberto Mancini, Maurizio Sarri and a host of other high-profile figures saying he ‘deserves’ the top individual accolade.
Murphy believes Jorginho’s trophy haul, which also includes the UEFA Super Cup, gives him a really good chance of winning the award.
If he does, he will become the first Premier League player to win it since Cristiano Ronaldo in 2008, who claimed the first of his five Golden Balls under Sir Alex Ferguson at Old Trafford.
Ronaldo won his first Ballon d’Or in 2008 at Old Trafford
“Very rarely – and I can’t remember the exact figures – do midfielders beat forwards for the Ballon d’Or because goals is what people remember and love and is one of the hardest things to do in football,” Murphy told the White and Jordan show.
“I think [Luka] Modric is one of the first midfielders in a long time to win it, probably because of his success in international football.
“I think it would be unusual for a midfielder but this time with Jorginho, he probably could win it after the Euros with Italy.”October 11, 2021 at 8:25 pm #1479505
Teenage midfielder Gavi is yet to complete 90 minutes for Barcelona, yet he was superb in the UEFA Nations League finals as he became Spain’s youngest ever player.
The Barca academy graduate was a shock addition to Luis Enrique’s squad for the Nations League, and it was an even bigger surprise when he was named in both their starting line-ups for the finals.
Gavi looked like a superstar in the making on his Spain debut
The 17-year-old is yet to play 90 minutes for Barcelona, but he wears Lionel Messi’s original No.30 shirt
Gavi has played just eight games of senior football totalling 409 minutes, with the toughest task yet coming last time out in a 2-0 loss to Atletico Madrid.
And against Italy in the Nations League semi-finals, things stepped up a level with a Euro 2020 winning midfield snapping at his heels.
However, the youngster more than lived up to the challenge, always in space to receive a pass, and always finding a teammate.
Gavi impressed again in the first half of Spain’s Nations League final clash against France but couldn’t stop them from losing 2-1.
Torres was the star of the show with two excellent goals
But Gavi still made the headlines with an impressive midfield display
Spain manager Luis Enrique has managed some of the game’s greatest ever players in Lionel Messi, Neymar, Xavi Hernandez and Francesco Totti, but still had some high praise for his newest star.
“We’re talking about a rare case in Gavi,” said Luis Enrique. “He is playing on the pitch as if it’s the backyard of his house. He’s the present and future of the national team.
“He’s a player who can play between the lines, doesn’t lose the ball, has good technique, and is physical.
“We knew what he would bring; personality, willingness to play, courage. Nothing is too much for him. He is a very complete player.”
Marco Verratti was unable to hold onto the star youngster
Gavi and Verratti duelled all night, with the former coming out on top
Luis Enrique famously made headlines when he picked a 24-man squad for Euro 2020, leaving two slots empty, and the Gavi call-up was just as big a shock.
But the former Barcelona coach wasn’t at all surprised, saying he’s been on the radar for a while.
“Absolutely, it was his first game but we know him, and those that know him, are not surprised,” he said.
“This is not a normal situation, with such a personality and so much football in one player so young.
Luis Enrique isn’t afraid of making big decisions, and this one paid off
“Quite typical in our system, he’s a player who can play between the lines he wouldn’t lose the ball he’s got technical qualities enough to give that last assist, good physique also so he’s the future of selection of course, but also as we can see it’s present.”
Unlike Luis Enrique, vice president of the Italian Football Federation, Demetrio Albertini, was surprised by the youngster.
The former Milan, Atletico Madrid and Barcelona compared him to a unique player who made his international debut even younger at just 16 years of age.
Gavi has been compared to Roma legend Totti, not for his style, but his performances at such a young age
“Gavi is an exception, he’s Francesco Totti, let’s call him that,” Albertini said. “But in Spain players can come through at second teams, where talent is confronted with experience.
“A talented player can be seen right away, there he has the courage that when you give him the opportunity he takes it without fear.”
Since the game reports have emerged that Barcelona are attempted to extend Gavi’s contract at the Nou Camp, and are offering a five-year deal.October 12, 2021 at 3:42 am #1479604
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