Cristiano Ronaldo turned 33 yesterday, and Sky Sports journalist Guillem Balague has discussed what changes he will have to make to extend his future.
But Balague thinks he will be able to extend his career by changing the way he plays.
“I said a couple of years ago that he had peaked physically and a lot of people understood what I was trying to say as: ‘He’s peaked and that’s it, he’s about to retire’. I never meant that,” Balague told Sky Sports. “What I meant was he had peaked physically so he had to change his game. “That’s what he’s done in the last couple of years. He’s become a striker, a number nine.”
On the other hand, Barcelona talisman Lionel Messi reportedly knows how Cristiano Ronaldo plans to leave Real Madrid. The 33-year-old looks likely to quit the Bernabeu given his current unhapiness with life at the club. And Don Balon say Messi thinks he is ready to move to the MLS. There, he thinks Ronaldo will enjoy one final payday before calling time on his career
Star players who could replace Cristiano Ronaldo
Paulo Dybala, Juventus
Mohamad Salah, Liverpool
Harry Kane, Tottenhham
Karim Benzema plan
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has a cunning plan to land Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea, according to reports.
Real Madrid are currently planning a mass summer sale as they look to freshen up their squad for next season.
And a new goalkeeper is right at the top of their agenda, but it will take a lot to prise De Gea away from Man Utd.
So Perez is hoping to use misfiring forward Karim Benzema as a makeweight in the deal.
According to Spanish outlet Diario Gol, the Portuguese manager is not interested in taking Benzema to United.
Perez will now have to go back to the drawing board and figure out another way of signing the Spanish shot-stopper.
Chelsea boss Antonio Conte challenges Roman Abramovich to make sack decision
ANTONIO CONTE appeared to challenge Roman Abramovich to sack him after Chelsea were beaten 4-1 by Watford on Monday night.
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Antonio Conte’s position at Chelsea is under renewed pressure after his side slipped to back-to-back Premier League defeats.
Before the match, Conte had asked for a public vote of confidence from Abramovich amid speculation over his future.
But the result, the first time Chelsea have lost consecutive games by at least three goals since October 1995, means the Italian will be fearing the worst.
And speaking after the match at Vicarage Road, Conte claimed he wasn’t under pressure and suggested he would accept the club’s decision if they decided to sack him.
Conte said: “My position? It is the same. I stay here, try to work and put all myself in the work.
“The pressure? Which pressure? What is the pressure?
“I work – if this is enough it is, OK. Otherwise, the club has to take another decision.”
Tiemoue Bakayoko was sent off after 30 minutes for two bookable offences.
Premier League: Winter break under discussion before new TV deal
The Premier League is considering introducing a winter break when a television rights deal is next agreed.
The top leagues in Germany, France, Italy and Spain all take time out in mid-season.
The Football Association has previously said a winter break is not feasible until the end of the current television deal in 2019.
Talks have been ongoing for several months and are understood to have been constructive.
A January break has been under discussion, so if it gets agreed it would not impact on the traditional festive football schedule.
An announcement on the next Premier League TV rights is expected next week. The league is seeking an increase on the current £5.14bn deal which includes 168 live matches a season, with Sky holding five packages of games and BT two.
The prospect of a winter break is referenced in the tender documents that have been sent to broadcasters. The next TV deal will cover 2019 to 2022.
Van Dijk calls out Carragher
Virgil van Dijk has hit back at Jamie Carragher after the former Liverpool defender suggested he needed to lose weight.
Carragher suggested the Holland international needed to lose some weight after the centre-back was dropped for the match against Huddersfield last week.
And Van Dijk has jokingly called on Carragher to meet him in the Liverpool dressing room to see for himself whether he needs to lose some weight.
“He (Carragher) needs to come into the dressing room and he can see if I need to lose some weight because I don’t think I need to lose some weight!” Van Dijk said.
“I have been out for eight months – last January until September really and I didn’t play at Premier League level.”
Paul Pogba blasted for having no ‘brains’ and being an ‘expensive luxury’
FORMER Manchester United youth player Eamon Dunphy has launched a stunning attack on Paul Pogba, suggesting he doesn’t have “the brains” to be the club’s playmaker.
Pogba has faced intense scrutiny since his £89million move back to Old Trafford in 2016.
And he was dropped from the starting line-up for Saturday’s 2-0 win over Huddersfield – only the second time he has not started a Premier League game when fit or available.
Jose Mourinho later played down his decision to name the France international on the bench.
Wayne Rooney, speaking on Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football, insisted Pogba would be better used in a role further up the pitch.
But Dunphy, who is now recognised as an football analyst on Irish television, has not seen enough of Pogba to suggest he is worthy of a spot in United’s side.
“I more than anyone have questioned Pogba’s ability and I don’t think he has it,” Dunphy said on Irish radio station RTE 2FM.
“I don’t think he has the brains to play there. He doesn’t have the knowledge, he doesn’t have the instinct to be a playmaker and I’m not sure what he is.
“If I was to chose between him and Juan Mata to play in midfield I’d chose Mata every time and now that Sanchez is at the club, he’ll want to play in the position that is probably Pogba’s best position which would be wide off a front three.
“So [Pogba] is going to have to fight for his place. “Sanchez is going to start, Lukaku is going to start and then Rashford is there, Jesse Lingard is there and Pogba is an expensive luxury.”
Dembele leaving in the summer?
Ousmane Dembele may be leaving Barcelona in the summer.
Diario Gol say the France international is wanted by Atletico Madrid as part of a swap deal involving Antoine Griezmann.
Express Sport understands Barca are hellbent on signing Griezmann in the summer.
And they may use Dembele as bait, despite the forward only arriving from Borussia Dortmund back in the summer.
Coutinho criticised by Balague
Philippe Coutinho is not creating enough for Barcelona following his move from Liverpool last month.
That’s according to Sky Sports’ La Liga expert Guillem Balague.
“Having been on the bench against Juventus and Sporting Lisbon last year in the Champions League, Lionel Messi was among the Barcelona substitutes for the derby against Espanyol,” he said.
“The final score was 1-1 and what you saw for three quarters of the game was that Barca did not have enough creativity.
“Philippe Coutinho was trying to fill that gap playing on the left and drifting inside the play in the pocket and in between the lines, but he did not create enough.
“He needs to be faster with his reactions and braver on the ball. Without Messi it’s clear Barcelona suffer with a lack of creativity, but who wouldn’t without the best player in the world?”
MORE FOOTBALL GOSSIP….
Borussia Dortmund chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke has accused Arsenal’s new signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang of “withholding performances” while the 28-year-old Gabon forward tried to push his transfer to the Gunners through. (Mirror)
Everton striker Wayne Rooney, 32, says Chile forward Alexis Sanchez, 29, is the “perfect player” for Manchester United, because of his “aggression, passion and desire”. (Express)
Tottenham striker Harry Kane says being released by Arsenal at the age of eight is the “best thing that ever happened to me”. (London Evening Standard)
England goalkeeper Joe Hart is wanted by Chelsea if their 25-year-old Belgian keeper Thibaut Courtois moves to Real Madrid. Hart, 30, is currently on loan at West Ham from Manchester City. (Sun)
West Ham manager David Moyes is unlikely to extend his stay at West Hampast the end of the season, whether or not the club stay in the Premier League. (Telegraph)
Arsenal are looking to tie down midfielder Aaron Ramsey, 27, to a new contract at the club. The Welshman’s current deal expires in 18 months. (Mirror)
Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha will see a knee specialist after suffering an injury in his side’s 1-1 draw with Newcastle on Sunday. The 25-year-old Ivory Coast international is expected to be out of action for at least four weeks. (Guardian)
Zaha and Palace boss Roy Hodgson have been shortlisted for awards at this year’s London Football Awards. (Croydon Advertiser)
Manchester United are set to do battle with Liverpool and Bayern Munich for Borussia Dortmund‘s 19-year-old American winger Christian Pulisic. (Bild – in German)
Manchester United will also meet with fans after manager Jose Mourinho’s complaints about their silence in the win against Huddersfield on Saturday. (Star)
The Red Devils have handed a trial to Colombian teenager Wilson Tilve, 16, who has been compared to fellow countryman and Bayern Munich midfielder James Rodriguez. (Daily Mail)
Everton striker Wayne Rooney, 32, says he would “like to go into management” once he retires from playing. (Sky Sports)
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has assured 31-year-old Belgian captain Vincent Kompany he still has a part to play in their quadruple pursuit. (Manchester Evening News)
Italy have conceded defeat in their attempts to convince Chelsea coach Antonio Conte to become their manager for a second time. (London Evening Standard)
Former Everton boss Ronald Koeman will be unveiled as Netherlands manager on Tuesday. (De Telegraaf – in Dutch)
Former Real Madrid and AC Milan midfielder Clarence Seedorf has been named as head coach of Deportivo La Coruna. The 41-year-old Dutchman has been placed in charge for the rest of the season after Cristobal Parralo’s sacking. (Mail)
Feyenoord’s Denmark striker Nicolai Jorgensen, 27, a target for Newcastlein last month’s transfer window, has suggested he is open to a summer move to the Premier League. (Newcastle Chronicle)
Newcastle midfielder Jack Colback, 28, who is spending the remainder of the season on loan at Nottingham Forest, has accused Magpies boss Rafael Benitez of showing him “a lack of respect” by making him train with the Under-23 squad after deciding he was not in his long-term plans. (Express)
Stoke skipper Ryan Shawcross, 30, has labelled Brighton’s visit on Saturday as the biggest game of the season for the club. (Argus)
Former midfielder Vinnie Jones says Leeds need to bring in “experienced pros” to get out of the Championship. The Yorkshire side are set to appoint Barnsley’s Paul Heckingbottom as their seventh manager since 2014. (Sun)
She Cranes Star Nuba Reveals Why She Decided To Play For Uganda Not South Sudan; Why She Regrets Giving Birth Early…
Born in South Sudan but grew in Uganda, that’s the story of the She Cranes goal shooter Mary Nuba Cholhok who was voted as the best shooter in the just concluded Fast5 Series tournament which was held in New Zealand.
Uganda emerged in fifth position in the tournament. theGrapevine had a chance to talk to Nuba before she went back to England for her professional career.
Grapevine: Why did you decide to play for Uganda and not for your native country South Sudan?
Nuba: South Sudan is still lagging behind in Netball and I’m getting old, that’s why I decided to play for Uganda’s She Cranes.
Grapevine: What challenges have you faced so far in your career?
Nuba: Thinking about my five-year baby who stays in Uganda yet I’m in England playing for my professional club.
Grapevine: Then what about your husband [the baby’s father] ?
Nuba: I’m not married, though I gave birth.
Grapevine: How did you manage giving birth and playing Netball?
Nuba: I realized that later that I made a mistake of getting pregnant. But I stood on my feet, forgot all the past and decided to move on with my child and my career.
Grapevine: How do you manage those good performances?
Nuba: I work very hard ever day in order to achieve my goals.
Grapevine: Where do you see She Cranes in four years to come?
Nuba: I see She Cranes winning the Netball World cup because we have good players who are still young.
Grapevine: Tell us about the best game in your career?
Nuba: When we defeated South Africa in the Common Wealth games in Birmingham.
Grapevine: Who’s your role model in the game of Netball?
Nuba: Peace Proscovia because of the way she managed to lift her life from a poor background. She is now superstar in the game.
By Juma Ali
MIRACLE: All She Cranes Players Return After Incidents Of Players Disappearing While On Duty Abroad…
It was a miracle this time around after all the She Cranes players returned from New Zealand.
It has been a habit for some Netball players to escape when the team travels for international tournaments.
Just last month, two She Cranes players; Nakanyike Shakira, who was a Police Player and Rose Namutebi, who was a KCCA Player, disappeared in UK, during She Cranes international friendlies.
The disappearance of these two players followed the disappearance of centre Player, Halimah Nakachwa, who disappeared in UK, in 2017 during another international friendly in UK.
However, this time around, all the nine players who went for the first five series tournament in New Zealand, where She Cranes emerged fifth, after wining three games and losing three games, all returned with the team.
National players disappearing while on duty abroad is also a habit in other sports disciplines like; boxing, table tennis, Rugby among others.
By Juma Ali
It’s Time For Golola To Rest: I’m Going To Punch Him Into Retirement – General Fungu Vows…
General Hamza Fungu has vowed to fight Moses Golola and send him into retirement come 26th December. 2022.
Fungu said this during the launch at Akamwesi gardens today.
Uganda’s middle weight kick boxing champion, Golola Moses is set to face his former trainer, General Hamza Fungu on bixing day at Akamwesi shopping mail gardens.
Golola, who is known for his many words said that he has beaten many fighters who were better than Fungu, “now look at this piglet, I’m going to show him why I’m called Golola Moses ‘of Uganda ‘ and I call upon Ugandans to come and be witnesses on that day.”
Though Golola said that he signed a contract which allows both fighters to fight until one gets tired, officials in charge of organizing the show said they will fight K-1 style for five rounds.
Grapevine had a chance to sit down with Golola’s challenger General Fungu and and this is what he had to say;
theGrapevine: How are you prepared for this fight?
Fungu: I’m well prepared but they have also given us enough time. So, I’m going to prepare more.
theGrapevine: Why, among fighters did you choose Golola?
Fungu: I have been asking to fight Golola for the last five years but he has been dodging me. He one time asked for 20,000 dollars to fight me.
theGrapevine: Why do you think he accepted this time around?
Fungu: I think this time, he has been given a lot of money.
theGrapevine: Which tactics are you going to use to defeat Golola?
Fungu : Golola has words but I have the tactics which will defeat Golola.
theGrapevine: Many people have come out to challenge Golola but he finally wins?
Fungu : He has been favoured many times.
theGrapevine: Is it true that the contract you signed for the fight allows you to fight until one of you gets tired?
Fungu : The contract is a disadvantage to Golola not me because I was born a fighter.
theGrapevine: What next after this fight?
Fungu : After this fight, I will fight three more three bouts and retire.
By Juma Ali
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