Neymar to travel for World Cup qualifying despite injury
SAO PAULO – Neymar will come to South America for World Cup qualifying matches despite a groin injury he picked up in a Champions League match for Paris Saint-Germain. Brazil coach Tite called Flamengo striker Pedro for the matches against Venezuela and Uruguay on Nov. 13 and 17, without removing Neymar from the squad. “We will follow his development closely.”PSG coach Thomas Tuchel said last week it would be “impossible” for Neymar to play for Brazil as he recovered from the injury. Brazil has already lost four players for the two clashes, including three due to injury — midfielders Philippe Coutinho and Fabinho, and defender Rodrigo Caio. Brazil and Argentina lead the South American qualifying group with two wins from two matches.
Barcelona fans relieved after Messi says he will stay
BARCELONA Barcelona fans breathed a collective sigh of relief a day after Lionel Messi said he would wait a year in his desire to seek success elsewhere. Argentine great Messi announced Friday that, despite having told the club he wanted to leave, he would see out the last season on his contract. The 33-year-old forward said he would stay because he wanted to avoid the ugly possibility of going to court to seek his release. Hes Staying was splashed over a huge photo of Messi on the front page of Barcelonas daily Sport on Saturday. It hurt me when people started to doubt my love for this club, Messi said.
Where next, Messi ? Few clubs can meet his financial demands
The money in that contract is daunting: a reported 100 million euros ($118 million) annual salary package and release clause demanding a 700 million euros ($827 million) transfer fee. What coach says no to Messi? said Tuchel, whose side lost the Champions League final to Bayern Munich on Sunday. GERMANYBayern Munich appears in little need of reinforcement after winning a Champions League, Bundesliga and German Cup treble. The Bavarian powerhouse has grown on and off the pitch thanks to smart financial management, with revenue of 750 million euros ($886 million) in the most recent annual accounts and profit after tax of 52 million euros ($61.5 million). When World Cup-winning France defender Lucas Hernndez arrived last year for a club-record 80 million euros ($95 million) from Atltico Madrid, it was an exception.
Bayern coach Flick the key to latest Bundesliga triumph
(AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)BERLIN Bayern Munich effectively won the Bundesliga title in November when it appointed Hansi Flick as coach. Bayerns defensive record was its worst since Jrgen Klinsmann was coach in 2008. Kovac had led Bayern to a league and cup double the season before but never had the full backing of the clubs leadership. Bayern is currently on a 14-game winning run including the 3-0 win over Chelsea in London in the Champions League. There are also other reasons Bayern has won an unprecedented eight consecutive title, mostly tied to the clubs financial might.