Rakitic confirms his desire to renew his contract
Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitic has confirmed his desire to renew his contract at the Camp Nou. The Croatia international has been a key figure for Barca since joining them from Sevilla in 2014. However, there has been speculation over his future in recent weeks as he has been in and out of Luis Enrique’s starting XI. “I am looking forward to sitting down with people from club because I want to renew my contract and stay here for many years,” Rakitic toldSport. Note, that the 28-year-old's current deal at the Camp Nou expires in 2019.
Rivaldo advice Coutinho to join Barcelona
Brazilian legend Rivaldo has tipped Liverpool star Philippe Coutinho to follow in his footsteps by joining Barcelona. Rivaldo told Sky Sports News HQ: "In my opinion, he's a great player and a player who knows Neymar well. I think they are both friends - players who stand out. "I think that this transfer might happen because Barcelona is always going to attract the best, isn't it? "He is one of the players who stands out and I believe that this transfer - if he goes to Barcelona - would be a good thing for Barcelona for sure. "He is a player who would definitely help Barcelona. Of course, Barcelona is a big club, but with a player like him, it would definitely be a big help."
Barcelona set Arda Turan price tag
Barcelona would not consider letting Arda Turan leave for less than €30m, reports AS. Turan, according to recent reports in Spain and Turkey, is a target for Chinese Super League side Guangzhou Evergrande, who are willing to offer him a lucrative salary. Barca coach Luis Enrique is a big fan of the Turkey playmaker and does not want him to leave, but club officials could be tempted to cash in on Turan if they receive a big bid. According to AS, the La Liga champions, who secured his services for €42m in 2015, would not contemplate selling Turan for less than €30m.
Messi commits his future to Barcelona
Lionel Messi wants to stay at Barcelona “for as long as they want me”. The Argentine has 18 months remaining on his contract and is yet to sign an extension. Barca CEO Oscar Grau recently hinted the club may struggle to meet Messi’s wage demands, prompting speculation he could move on. But speaking to Coach magazine, Messi said: “I have always said that Barcelona has given me everything and I am here for as long as they want me to be.” On his former coach Pep Guardiola, who is now manager at Man City, Messi added: “It is a very competitive league, last season showed that, so it makes it very difficult to predict. “Of course Pep is a very successful coach, he will be adjusting to the league, but I am sure that he will be successful.”
Barcelona not in hurry with Messi renewal
Barcelona are yet to formally offer Lionel Messi a new contract, reports Sport. Messi’s current deal expires in the summer of 2018 and the apparent uncertainty over his long-term future has reportedly prompted strong interest from other clubs, including Manchester City. Barca have not yet offered the Argentinian a new deal, while club president Josep Maria Bartomeu has not held a meeting with the player’s father Jorge Messi, who also acts as the forward’s agent. Bartomeu and Jorge Messi have held telephone conversations and, according to Sport, both parties have indicated their determination to reach an agreement. The first meeting between Bartomeu and Messi’s father could take place in mid-February.
Awesome football vines collection. Part 1
There are lots of football videos posted on the web each day. There are both funny moments from different leagues and beautiful goals as well. We start to introduce the most noteworthy vines from around the web. To start with, we go with Andy Carroll and his superb goal. Carroll scored this creation of art against Crystal Palace to secure West Ham's victory. The Hammers won the game 3 goals to 0, while their star man this time was Carroll instead of Payet who was missed out from the squad. And a bit of Cristiano Ronaldo magic that we miss. The Portuguese star was one of the worst players in Real Madrid squad last Sunday against Sevilla, as Zinedine Zidane's side lost the game with 2 goals conceded in the ending. When Zlatan scores on the weekend again. Ibrahimovic saved Manchester United from a defeat once again as the striker netted his 14th league goal to level Diego Costa and Alexis Sanchez at the top of the top scorers' list. Barcelona fans after hearing about Real Madrid defeat. La Liga leader's defeat allows others to cut the gap and get closer to them. Barcelona are now just two points behind Real Madrid and one point behind Sevilla. However, Zidane's side still has one postponed match to play. And Chelsea fans after Man Utd drew Liverpool and Man City lost to Everton. Chelsea are now 7 points clear and feel comfortable at the top of the Premier League table. Conte's side defeated Leicester away from home. And finally, enjoy this amazing video with some incredible football skills, goals and, of course, funny fails. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A4ZDH7LxRv8
Man City will pay £100m for Messi
According to The Sun, Manchester City have told Barcelona they are prepared to pay a record £100m to sign Lionel Messi. Negotiations between City and Barcelona reportedly took place at the end of last month, but no bid was made. Messi is yet to agree a contract extension with Barcelona - Neymar and Luis Suarez have recently signed - and City are prepared to offer him £800,000-a-week.
Barcelona 5 – 0 Las Palmas – all goals and highlights
La Liga | Match day 18 - Barcelona 5 - 0 Las Palmas - all goals and highlights
Dybala wants to continue at Juventus
Paulo Dybala says he wants to commit his future to Juventus after revealing that he has not received any offers from Barcelona or Real Madrid. The Argentinian, 23, is one of the most coveted forwards in world football, with recent reports claiming Spain’s two biggest clubs are on his trail. However, Dybala has his suitors a blow by revealing his desire to stay in Turin. Speaking to Rai Sport, he said: “Is it difficult to reject Real Madrid or Barcelona? I don’t have any offers, so, therefore, I do not have anything to reject. I am pleased and happy here, I want to stay, but this does not just depend on me. My agent will arrive here in the next few days and we hope to finalize a new contract.” Dybala joined Juve from Palermo in a €32m deal in 2015.
TOP-5 MIDWEEK Clashes you should NOT miss
Holidays are over, and we are all back to our duties, however, our beloved football world is still holding our hands not letting us to fall into post-holiday depression. Here we present a couple of awesome games that will color up your weekdays. Manchester United vs Hull City English League Cup, Semifinals January 10, 20:00 UTC Venue: Old Trafford, Manchester, England Referee: Kevin Friend After defeating West Ham and Newcastle United in the quarterfinals, Hull City and Manchester United are here to decide who will be the first finalist of English League Cup. Taking into account how the recent forms of these teams differ from each other, one might think of a possibility of seeing Jose Mourinho’s first final as the Red Devils’ head. The Manchester side are undefeated in their last 14 games in all competitions, having won the vast majority of it. Hull City, on contrast, have won only two clashes out of their last 10 games. The head-to-head statistics of these teams are not giving hope to Hull City either. There have no wins against Red Devils with only one draw and eight losses in last nine face-to-face encounters. However, League Cup has always been keen on surprising the fans, and the weekend win against Swansea (2-0) might be a big push for Hull City enthusiasm. League Cup final might be one of the only chances to shine in the current season. Missing Players Manchester United: Rojo (injured), Bailly (out of squad) Hull City: Bruce, Will Keane, Luer, Odubajo, Davies (all injured), Elmohamady, Mbokani (out of squad) Southampton vs Liverpool English League Cup, Semifinals January 11, 19:45 UTC Venue: Saint Mary’s Stadium, Southampton, England Referee: Neil Swarbrick Liverpool being in the second semifinals of the League Cup brings the fans hope to witness the historic English battle Manchester United vs Liverpool… But still there is a chance of having final Hull City vs Southampton, which, to be honest, does not seem a realistic scenario. Why? Southampton, as well as Hull City, are not having their best season. Three out of the last five games have been lost, last four games bringing no wins to the Saints. Head-to-head statistics against Liverpool, however, are not that bad for Southampton. Last two games have been home clashes with no loss, as the Saints won (3-2) and drew (0-0) last two face-to-face encounters. Missing Players Southampton: Austin, Boufal, Hesketh, Mccarthy, Targett, Pied, Fonte (all injured) Liverpool: Ings, Henderson (both injured), Matip (unfit), Mane (out of squad) Barcelona vs Athletic January 11, 20:15 UTC Copa del Rey, Round of 16 Venue: Cam Nou, Barcelona, Spain Referee: Jesus Gil Manzano, Spain If the top-5 clashes of the midweek were not sorted by dates in this selection, this would be first game as measured by the importance of the matches. Athletic Bilbao managed to win the first leg clash (2-1) and a simple draw will help Athletic to proceed the defending champions. Barcelona, in turn, are not experiencing their best season. Failing to win against Villarreal during the weekend, Luis Enrique side went down the league table and are now occupying the third position. The football fans expect Athletic to “park the bus”, while Barcelona squad will be furious in their attempt to prove all the critics wrong. I am certainly not missing the clash. Missing players Barcelona: Cillessen (injured) Athletic Bilbao: Aketxe, De Marcos, Yeray (all injured) Juventus vs Atalanta Coppa Italia, Round of 16 January 11, 19:45 UTC Venue: Juventus Stadium, Turin, Italy Referee: Piero Giacomelli Juventus vs Atalanta is one of the clashes in Coppa Italia Round of 16 which really needs attention. This is the game of the first and sixth teams of Serie A, which is at least worth a glance. Despite the fact Massimiliano Allegri’s team is not expected to feature with their first team, they are still the obvious favorites of the opposition. Sevilla vs Real Madrid January 12, 21:15 UTC Copa del Rey, Round of 16 Venue: Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan, Seville, Spain The result of this two-leg clash has been predetermined in the first-leg. Zinedine Zidane’s unstoppable machine went through Sevilla (3-0), despite the fact that the latter show pretty decent football in the current season and are even above Barcelona in Spanish La Liga league table. They are now occupying the second place. However, the actual game flow was is not obvious from the score. The referee of the clash (Mateu Lahoz) has been criticized recently for numerous mistakes, all in favor of the Madrid side. Will Sevilla be able to revive the intrigue of the clash if the arbitrage is fairer? Less likely, as Los Blancos look incredible in any case. But one thing is sure: Jorge Sampaoli side will try to correct their mistakes, and their try is worth watching.