Tata Martino becomes the new Mexico head coach

Mexico have confirmed the appointment of Tata Martino as their new manager following the veteran’s success with Atlanta United in Major League Soccer. The former Barcelona star had a storybook season with Atlanta during the previous campaign where he guided them to MLS Cup success in just their second season in the top tier.

Speaking after joining El Tri, Martino revealed that he has committed to the nation for the next four years and the ambition is to reach the quarter-final of the World Cup with the country being knocked out at the round of 16 stage in the previous seven editions, he said: “I’m getting onboard with the objective of playing in the fifth match of the World Cup. But before that, I want to put in place a system of play and a clear idea. We won’t just magically arrive there. The spirit of the contract is that of the World Cup cycle of four years.”
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Stuart Pearce heaps praise on Gareth Southgate’s efforts with England

Former England player and Under-21 manager Stuart Pearce believes Gareth Southgate has vastly improved the performances of the national side since taking charge at the helm. The Three Lions managed to reach the semi-final stage of the World Cup for only the third time in their history during the summer but they was some sort of disappointment after Croatia denied them the opportunity to reach the final event.

However, Southgate and his team managed to overcome the setback by securing a dramatic 2-1 comeback win over the Croatia on Sunday and the victory has offered England with the chance to vie for potential silverware after progressing to the Nations League finals. Speaking on Sky Sports News, Pearce highlighted that Southgate has become a better manager as his time with England has progressed and feels the 48-year-old does not have second thoughts with his selection for any matchday.
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Qatar Could Share Stadiums with Neighbours at 2022 World Cup, claims FIFA chief

FIFA chiefGianni Infantino has claimed that Qatar neighbours could ultimately join hands to host the 2022 World Cup. This tournament will encompass 48 teams and it is a substantial increase over the previous editions which featured only 32 teams. As a result, there will be plenty of requirements for stadiums across the host nation. It would allow 64 matches will be played at eight different stadiums over the course of 28 days.Qatar has been in a rift with neighbours, who have boycotted all forms of economy and travel with the oil-rich state.

Infantino admitted there was tension between countries like the Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia. However, he says that the possibility of sharing games is quite feasible and that leaders should consider giving it a try since it would send a good message to the world. The FIFA chief has compared the situation to the 2026 World Cup edition, which will feature games hosted jointly by Canada, United States, and Mexico. Even though the three countries are involved in several trade disputes, they have joined together in order to host the event. At the same time,Infantino admitted that it is highly unlikely that most of the Middle East states will be joining hands with Qatar considering that they have little to gain from such an arrangement.
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Ex-Brazil manager backs Neymar to be the best player at next World Cup

Former Brazil manager Vanderlei Luxemburgo has backed Neymar to be the best player at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. The Paris Saint-Germain star struggled with a foot injury during the backend of the previous league campaign and this partly hampered his performances for Brazil at the World Cup finals in Russia.

Moreover, he was also heavily criticised for the diving antics whenever he was fouled at the global tournament but Luxemburgo believes the attacker will be better prepared for the next World Cup in the Middle East, he told Omnisport: “Of course it has an impact on him. You can be sure of what I will say now: Neymar will be the best player of the next World Cup.
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ROBINHO: STADIUM SWUNG IT

Brazilian soccer star Robinho confirmed that the familiar faces at Real Madrid, as well as the chance to play at the Santiago Bernabeu helped him decide to move to the Spanish capital in such an important phase of his career development, rather than join their rivals Barcelona.

The forward, who has had quite a career, said the large group of Brazilian faces, and the coaching staff that was familiar faces helped him decide to join them, though he added that Barcelona also had a similar mix of players he knew at the time, and were interested. What swung it at the time was the fact that Robinho would be playing in the massive Bernabeu stadium on a weekly basis – as a child he had always dreamed of playeing there rather than in the Maracana or the Camp Nou. (more…)

World Cup winner unsurprised by Alisson Becker’s rapid rise

Former World Cup winner and Brazil legend Claudio Taffarel has said that he is not surprised by the progress made by Alisson Becker over the past couple of years. In the summer of 2016, Roma signed the shot-stopper from Internacional for a modest £7.1m but they managed to make a hefty profit on him after sanctioning his £65m switch to Liverpool earlier this summer.

Since then, Alisson has been fluent between the sticks on more occasions than not and Taffarel has suggested that his potential was never in doubt, he said: “You know, from the moment Alisson started playing at Roma he has enjoyed a natural growth. We all expected it, because in Brazil he had already shown his potential. He always showed that in the Brazilian team as well. “For us, it is very important. For the Brazilian goalkeepers it opens a lot of doors in Europe when they’re spoken of well. Ederson has impressive potential. Over time he will grow.”
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Mauricio Pochettino expecting his toughest season yet with Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino has admitted that he could face his ‘toughest season’ yet with Spurs. The north London outfit surprisingly made no signings during the recent transfer window and Pochettino now expects double effort from the current squad, if they are to compete for another top-four finish this season.

Speaking to reporters, he said: “Given everything, for me, it will be the toughest season and if we want success we have to give more than our best. 100 percent is not enough – it’s 200 percent. We know from inside that the season will be hard and because we are warriors we want to fight. We want to be proud at the end, we want success, and we do not want to complain or make excuses. I am a winner and I love the challenge, so I feel full of energy. We want to go again. The club, the fans, and the team need our full energy more than before.”
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Lucas Moura keen to impress for Tottenham Hotspur in pre-season

Brazil international Lucas Moura is keen to make an impression during Tottenham Hotspur’s pre-season tour of the United States. The 25-year-old could not make much of an impact after his mid-season arrival from Paris Saint-Germain last term but he is now eager to make amends starting with a strong display from pre-season.

Speaking to reporters, he said: “Roma is a big game to start the tour, I have Brazilian friends who have played at Roma. I also played against them (for PSG) last pre-season in America! It’s always tough against Italian teams.It’s always a pleasure to play against Barcelona. It’s a big team, big players and for me, it’s an important test.  We have to try to keep the ball and when we lose it, we try to get it back quickly. It’s my first pre-season with the club so I will give my best to show my talent and try to help the team win games. That’s my objective.”
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Liverpool ace praises Harry Kane for World Cup showing

Liverpool midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has heaped praise on Harry Kane following his stunning showing for England at the summer World Cup. The Tottenham Hotspur ace netted a match-winning brace during the 2-1 over Tunisia and he managed to follow it up with a hat-trick in the 6-1 mauling of Panama.

As a result, Kane is leading the Golden Boot race with five goals from just two matches and Oxlade-Chamberlain has praised his compatriot for leading from the front as the captain, he told TalkSPORT: “We all know how capable he is of scoring, but to take it to the World Cup is what all top goalscorers try to do. He’s on a great run of form at the moment and long may that continue in this tournament.He’s been brilliant leading the boys, not just vocally, but with his performances, which is massive.”
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Graham Roberts urges Gareth Bale to re-join Tottenham Hotspur

Former Tottenham Hotspur defender Graham Roberts has urged Gareth Bale to consider a return to Spurs during this summer’s transfer window. The Wales international netted a sublime brace during Real Madrid’s Champions League final triumph over Liverpool on Saturday but doubts continue to linger over his future at the European champions.

As such, Roberts has urged the 28-year-old to return to his former club, who have made great progress under Mauricio Pochettino in recent seasons, he tweeted: “You bloody beauty Gareth Bale get back to Spurs we’re the fans appreciate you and idiots don’t boo you and the manager wants you! Klopp just can’t get over the line these big games.”
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