Former Manchester United captain, Gary Neville, has revealed how legendary boss, Sir Alex Ferguson, used to intimidate referees and opposition players.
Ferguson was famous for his mind games: whether it was tapping his watch or making a loaded comment in a post-match interview.
Neville, who played under the Scot for the best part of two decades, has now described one of the intimidation tactics the Scot would use before games.
Speaking on the Quickly Kevin, Will He Score? podcast, he said: “He always used to stand in the tunnel before every single game, outside the dressing room, and shake every single one of our players’ hands.
“But I didn’t realise until I was captain that what he was doing, he was looking down the tunnel so the opposition players saw him and the referee saw him.
“It’s a bit of intimidation. He was an overpowering figure. This idea of winning in the tunnel before you’ve even gone out on the pitch, there was an element of that with him in terms of thepsychology.”
Chelsea striker, Olivier Giroud has ruled out the possibility of leaving Stamford Bridge for another club.
The 32-year-old has been linked with a move to the French Ligue 1 side, Marseille in recent months.
The Frenchman has expressed readiness to snub a move to Marseille, and stay and fight for his place at the West London club under manager, Maurizio Sarri.
“I feel like it is as if we are where we were several months ago when I was being asked the same questions before the World Cup,” Giroud told Telefoot.
“Today, I am calm, happy with this World Cup title.
“I don’t need to put myself under more pressure than that. Of course, I am a competitor and I would like more playing time.”
“But I am in a very big club, with very big players. I am going to fight and for the moment, it is not a question about seeking a departure. I am going to stick in there and do not count on me to give up.
“I came back late from the World Cup [so] Morata played.
“In the national team in September, with this goal against the Netherlands, that did me good.
“After that, when I came back to Chelsea, I played several matches as a starter.
“Today, the coach has introduced healthy competition. Morata started again, he played well.
“It is true that we were having issues in the effectiveness department, he scored, and things are going better.”
Giroud has scored a goal for Chelsea so far this campaign in the Premier League.
The former Arsenal star will hope to feature for Chelsea when they tackle Tottenham this weekend in a Premier League fixture.
Juventus forward, Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona captain, Lionel Messi, will both miss out on this year’s Ballon d’Or award.
This claim was made by respected journalist, Eric Macruth, who works for French radio station, RFI.
Recall that Ronaldo and Messi were shortlisted for the Europe topflight individual prize last month.
Ronaldo and Messi have dominated the award for ten years now.
The pair had won an incredible five awards each, with Ronaldo equalling Messi’s tally last year.
According to Express UK, Macruth disclosed that Real Madrid midfielder, Luka Modric will win the 2018 Ballon d’ Or, while Real Madrid defender, Raphael Varane and Paris Saint-Germain forward, Kylian Mbappe will be among the three-man final shortlist ahead of Ronaldo and Messi.
“Exclusive #BallondOr: After counting half the votes, the head trio is as follows: 1) Modric 2) @raphaelvarane 3 @KMbappe. @xbarretfoot @RFIRadioFoot Info @RFIsports,” Macruth tweeted.
The 2018 Ballon d’ Or award will take place on 3rd December, 2018.
Arsenal are reportedly preparing to make a £35million offer for Espanyol defender, Mario Hermoso.
Unai Emery’s side have conceded 19 goals in all competitions so far this season.
According to The Sun UK, the Emirates club are planning to make a £35million-bid for the Spain international in the January transfer window.
The report claimed that the North London club could face battle from Real Madrid who are also interested in the 23-year-old.
Hermoso has been the star player of Espanyol’s defence so far this campaign.
Hermoso’s side currently sit in fifth place on La Liga table, just three points behind league leaders, Barcelona.
Team captain, Ahmed Musa and 21 other players trained at the Stephen Keshi Stadium in Asaba on Tuesday evening.
The Super Eagles are preparing for Saturday’s 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying battle against the Bafana Bafana of South Africa in Johannesburg.
According to a statement by Ademola Olajire, the Director of Communications, Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), those in camp are goalkeepers Daniel Akpeyi, Theophilus Afelokhai and Ikechukwu Ezenwa.
“At the training, we also had defenders Olaoluwa Aina, Adeleye Aniyikaye, Semi Ajayi, Bryan Idowu, William Ekong, Leon Balogun, Kenneth Omeruo and Jamilu Collins.
“There were also midfielders Oghenekaro Etebo, John Ogu and Mikel Agu, and forwards Kelechi Iheanacho, Moses Simon, Victor Osimhen, Henry Onyekuru, Alex Iwobi, Isaac Success and Samuel Chukwueze.
“Only France-based forward Samuel Kalu is expected on Wednesday,’’ he said.
Nigeria need just one point from Saturday’s encounter inside the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg to secure a ticket.
Nigeria’s delegation will depart the country aboard a chartered flight from the Benin City Airport on Thursday evening.
Arsenal forward, Danny Welbeck, has spoken for the first time since his career threatening injury during their Europa League clash with Sporting Lisbon.
The England international promised to return ‘stronger than ever before’ and thanked Arsenal fans for their support.
The player said this after undergoing two surgeries on his broken ankle.
The 27-year-old forward landed awkwardly in the 30th minute in the draw with Sporting Lisbon and required oxygen before being stretchered off the field at the Emirates.
Arsenal had earlier confirmed that both of Welbeck’s procedures ‘went well’ on Monday night.
“Back home… Thanks for all the love and support,” he told his followers on Twitter.
“No doubt I will be back stronger than ever before. Recovery grind starts now.”
This is a serious debate and we want honest answers from our Hard Core Football Fans
After having an incredible tournament for Super Eagles at the 2013 FIFA U-17 World Cup that saw him grab the Most Promising Talent For that year at the CAF Awards, young Iheanacho was the at central of attraction from top European teams including Arsenal & Porto.
Many wanted him to join Arsenal as that will give him more playing time as then manager Arsene Wenger was known to give young players a spot in his squad.
However, in a move that critics saw as
picking money over career, Iheanacho made a shock move to Man City in early 2014.
Despite rare glimpse of promise, his limited chances at City greatly affected his confidence, jeopardizing his growth. It was surprising to see him pick Man City as they are known to splash the cash for ready made stars. It was hard to see our Iheanacho grow in such an environment
On 3rd of August 2017, Leicester City signed him on a five-year deal.
Now look what a Nigerian tweeted below, it wasn’t me ooo!
Ahead of their Premier League clash at the Etihad on Sunday, Manchester United boss, Jose Mourinho has aimed a dig in the direction of his Manchester City counterpart, Pep Guardiola.
Mourinho emphasised on City’s policy, especially when the club signed four full-backs last season to become the side with the most expensive defence line in the world.
Guardiola’s team have come under fire during the week after the leaked data exposing their approach to avoiding Financial Fair Play.
While former Chelsea boss would not directly comment on the row, he took aim at City’s recruitment policy and moaned at their superior resources in the transfer market
“I am clearly rebuilding,” he told reporters during press conference ahead of the Manchester derby.
“In my first season, I got into a situation where there were players like Wayne Rooney and Michael Carrick – phenomenal players and some of the most important players in the past years of the club – coming to the end.
“We had to get a player like Ibra [Zlatan Ibrahimovic] to help us to have a certain power to fight for something important, which was clearly to get back to the Champions League level.
“But it’s been hard work, really hard work, with people like Luke Shaw and Tony Martial, for example.
“Because for talented players like them to get to the level they are now is a process.
“To transform talent in professional players into stability and performance is a process of hard work. So is it rebuilding? Yes.
“If I need a full-back and I was able to buy four, it would be easier. So, when I needed a full-back, when I wasn’t happy with Luke Shaw’s level, the easiest thing would have been to buy four new players.
“Some clubs can buy four full-backs. But we didn’t buy a left-back for three years because we were wishing and working for Luke Shaw to be that left-back.
“But during that process, we played Matteo Darmian, we played Daley Blind, we played Ashley Young, we played Marcos Rojo.
“We didn’t buy four replacements – and that is a big difference. It takes less time when you buy four full-backs.
“To buy four, you need good scouting – and you need money. But to make players well that takes more time.”
Fifa is investigating allegations Manchester City broke rules banning third-party ownership in their links with Danish club FC Nordsjaelland.
On Thursday, Danish newspaper Politiken claimed City had signed an agreement with the Superliga side allowing them to recruit African players for free.
It allegedly gave them the right to sign players from Nordsjaelland’s Right to Dream Academy between 2016 and 2020.
BBC Sport has contacted Premier League champions City for comment.
Nordsjaelland president Tom Vernon told Politiken no players had been “forced” to move – and the contract in question had “not been in force for some time”.
He added: “We are confident that we are in compliance with all relevant football regulations in our running of Right to Dream and FC Nordsjaelland.”
The contract in question allegedly stated Nordsjaelland “shall be obliged to use its best endeavours to effect the transfer” if City wanted to sign a player from the academy.
banned third-party ownership of players in 2015, said it was “looking at this matter”.
Politiken’s allegations come during a week in which German news magazine Der Spiegel alleged City and its sponsors manipulated contracts to circumvent Uefa’s Financial Fair Play regulations.
England and Manchester City forward, Raheem Sterling, has officially signed a new five-year deal worth up to £300,000 a week with the Premiership champions, making him the highest-earning English footballer.
On signing the deal, the 23-year-old who has so far scored seven goals for Manchester City said:
‘I’m delighted to sign – my development here has been incredible,’ Sterling said. ‘I felt from the minute I got here it was the right choice for me. It’s really paid off for me and I’m really grateful.
‘Every season you come in you want to do better than your previous season. You want to try and develop and get better.
‘With the facilities, we’ve got here there’s no reason not to. With the coaching staff and the players we have in this team it’s the perfect environment to develop and get better.’
Football star Raheem Sterling officially signs new ?300,000 per week deal with Man.City, becomes England
Manchester City sporting director Txiki Begiristain added: ‘This is a significant moment for the club.
‘Raheem has improved dramatically in the past two seasons and is now one of the Premier League’s best-attacking players. His statistics tell their own story.
‘He’s quick, strong and excellent in front of goal – everything a modern-day forward needs to excel.
‘We’re all delighted he has committed his future to City.’
Bernardo Silva believes Manchester United remain Premier League title “contenders” and says victory in this Sunday’s derby is vital in denting their challenge.
Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola appeared to rule out Jose Mourinho’s side last month from a five-horse race but United have since won back-to-back league games to get within four points of fourth-placed Tottenham.
Victory for United, who came back from 2-0 down to win the corresponding fixture last season at the Etihad, will see them move within six points Guardiola’s side ahead of the international break.
“We don’t know that. For sure it is an important game, like any other one because we are playing for three points,” Silva said, when asked whether the match was their most important of the season.
“We want to win every time we play in the Premier League or any competition.
“It’s just three points but for the fans, it means a little bit more because it is a derby and against a contender.
Mohamed Salah has reportedly reached out to the artist who created a sculpture of him that went viral in order to encourage her to continue with her art.
Egyptian sculptor Mai Abdalla faced a backlash after her piece was unveiled at the World Youth Forum in Sharm El Sheikh last week.
The sculpture quickly went viral, and as well as being compared to the infamous bust of Cristiano Ronaldo that was unveiled in Madeira last year, also earned comparisons with the likes of Leo Sayer and Art Garfunkel because of Salah’s almost comically high hair.
The Liverpool star is a hero in his homeland after leading Egypt to their first World Cup finals since 1990, and although they ended up losing every game in Russia in the summer, the design was commissioned to show how much Salah is idolised by the country’s youth.
The negative reaction to the creation has caused a stir online, but – according to Egypt Today , via the Liverpool Echo Salah has taken steps to ensure that the artist isn’t too discouraged.
In a Facebook post, Abdalla wrote: “International and our hero captain, our player Mohamed Salah, personally contacted me just now and encouraged me to continue.
“He asked me not to pay attention to the negative comments and told me that I am a very good artist. And asked me to take my time in the work of a new statue to put him in his home.”
Salah retains hero status in Egypt despite a row with the country’s football association that began during the World Cup, when he was forced to meet with controversial Chechnya leader Ramzan Kadyrov.
The row has now cooled though, and after playing for Egypt in a 4-1 win over Eswatini last month, Salah is set for feature for Egypt in an Africa Nations Cup qualifier against Tunisia next week.
Former Arsenal manager, Arsene Wenger has explained why forward, Alexis Sanchez is struggling at Manchester United.
Sanchez has struggled to hit top form since his arrival from Arsenal in the January transfer window.
The Chilean international was unhappy with manager, Jose Mourinho, after he was dropped earlier this season and reports claimed few weeks ago that the 29-year-old is considering leaving Old Trafford.
Wenger, who coached Sanchez during his time at Emirates, believes the forward has lost his confidence and that is affecting his performance for United.
Speaking on Sanchez’s form at United, Wenger told beIN Sports: “I believe he has lost confidence.
“The strength of Alexis Sanchez is to take initiative to dribble and to take people on.
“Those are the players who are most vulnerable when they lose confidence their game is based on that and having that feeling to take initiative, he has lost that slowly.”
Sanchez impressed for the Red Devils when he started for his side’s 2-1 win over Juventus in the Champions League encounter on Wednesday night.
He will hope to feature for United when they tackle Manchester City this weekend in the Premier League derby clash.