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Manchester City shines in preseason

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During the first game of the preseason, Pep Guardiola’s team thrashed West Ham United 4-1 in what was a game full of concepts and details to take into account for the development of the season.

In addition, among young people, appeared from the beginning two of the most important reinforcements for the season 19/20: Rodri and Angeliño.

Let’s see, then, what left Manchester City’s debut in the preseason:

  • Use of the new rule in output

It was obvious, wasn’t it? Everything that indicates to have the possession and to organize the game probably is used by Guardiola. It shows the new rule that allows receivers within the area after the goal kick.

There, among the multiple probable scenarios, Pep tried two: the short exit without pressure and the middle exit when it is pressed high.

In both managed to generate opportunities and transcend half of the court with the ball dominated, finding spaces and with several players.

And we still need to see it with the top players and more trained …

  • Third man concept

As usual, Guardiola teams travel the entire field forming small triangles to associate and attack the spaces.  Over and over. It is a registered trademark.

Facing the West Ham, It applied this concept several times; It attracted markers and got some flyer to give the pass to the created space. There appeared a man in freedom and with more time to decide/execute.

When there is more time to perform an action, there is more time to hit. Everything is thought.

  • Rodri’s function

It is no coincidence that Rodri sees minutes from the first game of the preseason. And probably will be like that until the last one. He will be a vital piece for Manchester City 19/20; the more familiar he is with the idea, the better.

The Spanish recovered balls, leaked passes and found a place among the central defenders to help in the exit, being important in that first phase of gestation.

Exciting? Absolutely. He is the most “Guardiola” player who has reached the Etihad.

How Rodri adapts, and what he subsequently contributes, will be born much of what the City can achieve this year.

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PSG worried with “Neymar deadline” as Real Madrid is hopeful

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Every day, a new offer for Neymar is announced in the European press. The latest is a “royal” combo: Real Madrid would be willing to pay 100 million euros plus three more players – Gareth Bale, James Rodriguez, and Keylor Navas – for Neymar. I swear I would close a swap-deal with the likes of Bale and James for Neymar. I don’t know what’s going on PSG’s chairman’s mind, but they have denied this absurd proposal.

PSG keep playing hard in order to keep the Brazilian striker, having already declined offers from two other European giants, Barcelona and Juventus.

In Real, the three players included in the proposal are set to leave. The Spanish club almost negotiated the Welsh Gareth Bale to China, but the player refused the transfer. James Rodriguez has returned from Bayern Munich loan and is not in the plans of coach Zinedine Zidane. And Costa Rican goalkeeper Keylor Navas wants to go out for a better chance to play, as Belgian Thibaut Courtois, somehow, has Zidane’s trust to be the absolute starter.

Meanwhile, I see a move back to Barcelona very improbable at this transfer window. It will be officially closed in 10 days, and the only way Barcelona could land Neymar is to paying his full-price, as PSG doesn’t seem to want to see Neymar back at Catalunia. At the same time, a move back to Barca is clearly Neymar’s wish, but I see his priority as to get out of PSG as soon as possible.

So maybe even despite the efforts from Lionel Messi, who has reportedly called Neymar to try to change the Brazilian’s mind on not to join Madrid will be in vain.

At the same time, keeping Neymar would not be a good idea for PSG, as they would still have to pay his wages, and it’s not good to have an unsatisfied player within the squad. Clock is running for both PSG and Neymar. Where will Neymar Junior be playing in some weeks? Let’s wait and see, but apparently, this whole situation is coming to an end.

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CR7: “Any player who hasn’t proved anything is worth €100M nowadays”

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It seems like the inflated Football transfer market has been upsetting the Portuguese star, Cristiano Ronaldo. In a recent interview for Portuguese TV channel “TVI”, the legend has criticized the astronomical prices clubs have been paying for players who aren’t really worth that. I have a slight impression that Man United’s new signing Harry Maguire didn’t like it that much. Pass it on.

– Nowadays, prices are surreal. I’ll put aside the case of Joao Felix, but now any player without proving anything is worth a 100 million euros. This is madness. One sees center-halves and goalkeepers being transferred by astronomical values. But on the one hand, it is also good because it is a sign that the football business is alive and apparently in good health – said the 34-year-old who avoided setting a price tag for himself.

“When I see goalkeepers being sold at 75 million euros, a player who does what I do on the pitch and who scores goals has to be worth three, four times more. Easily.”

Besides that, he also gave his words on his childhood dreams back at Madeira Island:

– My dream was to be a soccer player, everyone told me I was a football star and I started to create this illusion. But if you ask me if I thought I would ever win a Golden Ball, two or three, I tell you I never thought about it. I know that obviously, the most important thing is to have talent, and this I have, but if you notice, great athletes from others sports, scientists or Nobel laureates, are all great workers. I like to copy good examples, not only in sports. All had great talent but were above all great workers.

And also on his move from Real Madrid to Juventus:

– Financially, I don’t need football to live well. I will live well throughout my whole life. There are projects, and this one from Juventus has caught my attention. It was a challenge. I had won it in England, Spain and was going to win here in Italy. And I got another record by winning the championship. I like challenges. For me, Madrid was already in my comfort zone. After winning 17 or 18 titles, it was one more. Routines were always the same. I wanted a new challenge, I am a person who aims the perfection in my area.

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Coutinho praised by Klopp and Lewandowski

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Hired last week by Bayern Munich from Barcelona in a 1-year loan deal, Philippe Coutinho was praised by his new teammate Robert Lewandowski, and also by his former manager from Liverpool times, Jurgen Klopp. The Brazilian, who can make his debut for his new team this Saturday against Schalke 04 for Bundesliga’s Matchday 2 is being celebrated everywhere.

Everyone knows what Coutinho can do. He had a terrible time at Barcelona, but if he can make about half of what he was performing for the English Reds, I’m pretty sure the Bavarians will be happy. Lewandowski, who had complained about Bayern’s lack of signings in this window, praised his new teammate and also said that he isn’t worried on Coutinho’s possible problems to integrate with the squad at Bayern. Here’s what the Polish man said:

– Players like him can decide when a game can be won or not. And with an athlete like him, anyone can play along from the first match, ”

Who also gave his verdict on Coutinho was Bayern’s coach Niko Kovac. He talked about the possibility of the Brazilian starting at the match against Schalke this weekend:

– He is not yet at a fitness level to start on Saturday and play 90 minutes. Let’s put it slowly and not take risks.

Meanwhile, the charismatic Jurgen Klopp showed some kind of sadness as he was not able to re-sign Coutinho from Barcelona. Still, the German manager praised his former player, and also compared him to 2006 World Champion, Alessandro Del Piero:

– Coutinho has an unbelievable eye for goal from range. I haven’t seen a player coming off the left and striking the ball with such regularity and precision from those kinds of positions since Alessandro Del Piero. Bayern needed him. Now he will need to join the team. Bundesliga has won a great player – said the German to the magazine “Kicker”.

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