Watch ‘mad man’ Aurier’s horror stamp on Bayern’s Alaba that somehow avoids red card

first_imgTOTTENHAM fell apart against Bayern Munich and it somehow could have been even worse – if Serge Aurier had been sent off for hacking David Alaba.The right-back, 26, went in with both feet off the ground having badly misjudged Alaba’s slide tackle clearance.So what’s the point of VAR when Aurier is doing tackles like this @baz1701_baz pic.twitter.com/lFJv2MWCU5— RonDon (@Triggz187) October 1, 2019 3 Aurier escaped a booking for the lungeCredit: ReutersThe incident occurred only in the eighth minute of the match and, even with Aurier remaining on the pitch, Spurs went on to lose 7-2.There will no doubt be some fans arguing the scoreline would have been improved had the Ivorian been given his marching orders, such was his starring role in a number of Munich’s goals.But the moment also raises serious questions of VAR and how officials reviewing the incident decided not to advise a red card.Alaba only made it to half-time at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and was down for several moments following the lunge, providing ample time for a video replay.And referee Clement Turpin didn’t even book Aurier, seemingly accepting it had no malicious intent despite being very dangerous.VAR has been less inclined to upgrade dodgy challenges to dismissals since its introduction, although AC Milan defender Matteo Musacchio had his foul on a Fiorentina player upgraded from yellow to red on the weekend.🤦‍♂ It goes from bad to worse for Milan🔴 Musacchio goes in on Ribery with his studs up and after consulting with VAR, Piero Giacomelli upgrades his initial yellow card to a red! pic.twitter.com/RYKZdf5ntn— Premier Sports 📺 (@PremierSportsTV) September 29, 2019 Latest Football NewsSILVA’S GOLDEN GIRLModel Ines Tomaz has been helping Bernardo Silva through quarantineGossipCROWD RETURNFA Cup final ‘may see 20,000 at Wembley in trial allowing some fans at games’CommentPHIL THOMASDiving and whining was never a good look and will seem worse after lockdownExclusive’I’M IN A BAD WAY’Ex-England star Kenny Sansom talks for first time since being attackedExclusiveBOURNE AGAINHowe says Cherries are stronger after lockdown with FIVE fit-again starsExclusiveSWAN THAT GOT AWAYSwansea wanted £3m Davies three years ago but couldn’t get work permitNEXT STEPJonny Hayes set to move to English Championship having been let go by CelticBAYERN 5 DUSSELDORF 0Lewa bags two as Bayern thump rivals to close on 8th straight titleNeedless to say, Spurs fans were furious with Aurier’s showing on Tuesday.One Twitter user wrote: “Aurier genuinely looked like he wanted to be off the pitch, stomping into Alaba’s chest.”Tom added: “Aurier played that 2nd half as if he’d actually been sent off for that Alaba challenge.”Marcus, meanwhile, attempted to explain the tackle: “Aurier hurdles a challenge and Alaba slides under where he’s gonna land so it’s just an accident.”But Gabriel tweeted: “Alaba went in sliding early and Aurier jumped early at the same time like players do when they want to jump OVER the person sliding. But it was so mistimed that he stamped on him with both legs. Easily a red.”ACCA WITH LADBROKES Pick up a whole load of acca features to help you land the big one3 Some believe the moment was an accidentCredit: Reuters3 The defender protested his innocence after the tackleCredit: PA:Press AssociationSerge Gnabry loses the match ball after team-mates trip him up and kick the ball into the Bayern fanslast_img read more

Chelsea hero Fabregas trolls Spurs on ‘Battle of the Bridge’ anniversary

first_imgCESC FABREGAS has trolled Tottenham over the infamous “Battle Of The Bridge” that resulted in Leicester winning the Premier League title.Four years ago today Spurs travelled to Chelsea still in with a shot of pipping the Foxes to the crown.2 Cesc Fabregas played the full 90 minutes at Chelsea stopped Spurs in their tracksCredit: AFP or licensors2And moving into a 2-0 lead, the dream was on for Spurs thanks to goals from Harry Kane and Heung-min Son.But Gary Cahill gave Chelsea some hope of getting something from the game, and then Mauricio Pochettino and Co’s hopes were killed when Eden Hazard scored the equaliser at the death.And looking back to that infamous day, Fabregas has riled up a fair few Spurs fans.The Spaniard, now playing at Monaco, tweeted: “Today 4 years ago we won the Premier League.”He then cheekily added: “For Leicester City.”There was drama all over the pitch on that day in West London, with a total of THIRTEEN yellow cards, nine for Spurs.Moussa Dembele was retrospectively banned for six games for appearing to gouge Diego Costa, and Erik Lamela “accidentally” stamped on Fabregas’ head.Most Read In FootballTHROUGH ITRobbie Keane reveals Claudine’s father was ’50-50′ in coronavirus battleTOP SELLERGavin Whelan has gone from League of Ireland to David Beckham’s InstagramPicturedAN EYEFULMeet Playboy model and football agent Anamaria Prodan bidding to buy her own clubI SAW ROORodallega saw Rooney ‘drinking like madman’ & Gerrard ‘on bar dancing shirtless’ExclusiveRIYAD RAIDMan City’s Riyad Mahrez has three luxury watches stolen in £500,000 raidNEXT STEPJonny Hayes set to move to English Championship having been let go by CelticWhat resulted was Leicester and boss Claudio Ranieri winning the Premier League at odds of 5,000/1, with games still to go.Fabregas’ throwback tweet unsurprisingly went down well with Chelsea and Leicester fans, with some professing their love for the “legend”.Spurs fans were less happy, with one labelling the 32-year-old “a toddler” and telling him to “grow up”.It comes after Jamie Carragher hailed Leicester’s title winners as greater than Manchester United’s Treble side or Arsenal’s Invincibles.Leicester win Premier League as Spurs drawlast_img read more

Aurier appears to break social distancing rules AGAIN as he shows off haircut

first_imgBut the latest Instagram post comes less than a month after he and Moussa Sissoko were forced to apologise… for breaking lockdown rules.The Ivorian full-back shared a video of himself wearing a mask while training with fellow Tottenham man Sissoko on social media before swiftly deleting it.In a joint statement, the pair said: “We wish to apologise for not setting the right example here.”We recognise that as professional footballers we have a responsibility to be role models, particularly during this uncertain period that everyone around the world is facing.””We must all respect the government advice to minimise the number of lives lost during this pandemic.Latest Tottenham newsHARRY ALL FOUR ITKane admits Spurs must win EIGHT games to rise into Champions League spotGossipALL GONE PETE TONGVertonghen wanted by host of Italian clubs as long Spurs spell nears endBELOW PARRSpurs suffer blow with Parrott to miss Prem restart after appendix operationPicturedSHIRT STORMNew Spurs 2020/21 home top leaked but angry fans slam silver design as ‘awful”STEP BY STEP’Jose fears for players’ welfare during restart as stars begin ‘pre-season’KAN’T HAVE THATVictor Osimhen keen on Spurs move but only if they sell Kane this summerYOU KAN DO ITKlinsmann quit Spurs to win trophies but says Kane’s better off stayingTURBULENT PAIRINGDrogba and Mido had mid-flight brawl after stewardess prank went wrong”We cannot thank NHS staff enough for their tireless work at this time and we shall both be making a financial donation to show our support for their efforts.”The incident with Sissoko was the second time Aurier had ignored safety measures as he filmed himself running with a friend two weeks earlier.On top of Aurier’s mindless antics, Spurs were also criticised after Jose Mourinho was pictured holding a training session in a park doing meanwhile Sanchez and Ryan Sessegnon went running together.5 The Spurs right-back tagged celebrity barber Justin Carr in the post on Tuesday eveningCredit: Instagram5 He was pictured appearing to wear the same Davinson Sanchez Colombia shirt on his way into training at Spurs earlier in the dayCredit: Reuters5José Mourinho slammed by Sadiq Khan for ‘endangering lives’ by taking Tottenham training session during coronavirus lockdownCORONAVIRUS CRISIS – STAY IN THE KNOWDon’t miss the latest news and figures – and essential advice for you and your family.To receive The Sun’s Coronavirus newsletter in your inbox every tea time, sign up here.To follow us on Facebook, simply ‘Like’ our Coronavirus page.Get Britain’s best-selling newspaper delivered to your smartphone or tablet each day – find out more. 5TOTTENHAM star Serge Aurier appeared to break social distancing rules AGAIN… this time getting a haircut.The right-back, 27, took to Instagram on Tuesday night to post a photo of his new lid – and fans were quick to question whether he had been ignoring government guidelines for a THIRD time.⚠️ Read our coronavirus in sport live blog for the latest news & updates5 Serge Aurier took to Instagram to show off his haircut – but may have broken social distancing rules againCredit: InstagramAurier, wearing his Spurs team-mate Davinson Sanchez’s Colombia shirt, posed on a seat with another man stood directly behind him.In the first photo, he has his hands together, then points to the camera and finally lowers his head to show off the very fresh fade and design in his hair.He captioned the post: “Yes Sir @justscuts #LeCoiffeurEstBon,” with the hashtag translating to “the hairdresser is good”.The tagged username is Justin Carr, a barber who has 31.4k Instagram followers and keeps plenty of top Premier League footballers’ lids in shape.Earlier on Tuesday, Aurier uploaded a video of him kicking a ball, seemingly at Spurs’ training ground – with the players returning for solo sessions for the first time.He wrote: “Resumption of work… it’s almost time.”last_img read more

Pulu banned for two weeks

first_imgPhoto: HAGEN HOPKINS/GETTY IMAGES (Caption: Referee Glen Jackson marches Augustine Pulu off late in the match in Palmerston North) It means Pulu’s Mitre 10 Cup season is over, with Counties-Manukau out of premiership semifinal contention and just one regular season match remaining against Tasman on Saturday.Pulu was red carded for a dangerous tackle on Manawatu’s Jade Te Rure in the 75th minute of last week’s match in Palmerston North, which Counties-Manukau won 29-24.He faced a hearing before New Zealand Rugby judicial officer Nigel Hampton QC on Saturday.Hampton said the tackle initially made contact with Te Rure’s chest, then rose onto the neck, making it a low end offence with a starting sanction of a two-week suspension.Hampton found that Pulu had been suspended for a similar offence in 2016, which added one week to the entry level sanction.Pulu showed remorse for his action, immediately apologised to the opposing player Te Rure and Hampton noted it was the first red card he had received, which saw the suspension reduced to two weeks.Pulu’s suspension includes all rugby and means he will miss Counties-Manukau’s match against Tasman and any matches he is scheduled to play in up to and including October 21.last_img read more

McMahon signs with Sunwolves, World Cup hopes fade

first_imgThe 24-year-old has not played for the Wallabies since their heavy loss at the hands of Scotland on last year’s Spring Tour, after which he joined Suntory in the Top League.With Japan hosting the 2019 Rugby World Cup, however, the surrounding Top League seasons were drastically shortened – leaving a window for Australian players to return home for a Super Rugby season and a potential World Cup tilt.The Reds, Rebels and even the Force approached McMahon but RUGBY.com.au can reveal he turned his back on all offers to sign for the Sunwolves for the 2019 Super Rugby season.A Sunwolves official confirmed McMahon had signed a one-season contract.It’s understood the deal was done in July.The Sunwolves play in the Australian conference but they are still regarded as a foreign side and Aussie players at the club are therefore not eligible for the Wallabies.While the Sunwolves deal doesn’t entirely kill off the chances of McMahon playing at the World Cup – he could still sign for an Australian Super Rugby club in 2020-21 and therefore be eligible for selection – it is understood the flanker intends to stay in Japan and extend with Suntory.He is understood to be earning around $800,000 per year in the Top League, well over his earning capacity in Australia given the hefty salaries of fellow star flankers David Pocock and Michael Hooper.McMahon has been sorely missed by the Wallabies in a disappointing 2018 campaign, and will be a huge loss for the Wallabies’ World Cup campaign if he does not figure.McMahon’s destructive, tireless carries were a significant cog in the attacking machine which kept the Wallabies ticking in 2017 and they have lacked a line bending backrower since his departure.Asked earlier this month about bringing the star flanker home, Cheika said he’d been “very clear” in putting an offer on the table.”We’ve been really clear with Sean about what we’d like,” Cheika said.”The ball is in his court.”The Sunwolves announced their initial squad on Tuesday.Star Kiwi winger Rene Ranger headlined a list of new recruits, the signing of McMahon expected to be unveiled in the coming weeks.last_img read more

ICC to help deliver Athlete Career Education program

first_imgICC East Asia Pacific Development Manager Kieran McMillian is working with Richard Ora, HP Athlete Career Education Coordinator and HP Director Aaron Alsop to host an ACE Workshop with the athletes of PNG, including some ICC cricket specific content for PNG Cricket.ICC approached HP to partner with them to support and deliver the education programs as part of the requirements of their development programs.In addition it will present an opportunity to have the visiting guest speakers present a workshop which will theme topics such as Career Education, Personal Development and Life Skills.HP Director Alsop is also grateful for the guest speakers offering to conduct a range of capacity building and professional development with the staff to complement existing programs and education curriculum.McMillan said that the ICC sees great potential for PNG to have an impact on the world cricket stage.“As part of our efforts to support Cricket PNG’s continued growth, we are excited to be working with the High Performance Sport team of PNGSF and using the expertise within the Australian and NZ cricket industries to develop quality education and welfare programs for PNG’s elite cricketers and athletes from other sports.  These programs will provide players with the support they need to develop a broader range of skills and lead balanced lives – which can only enhance their on-field performance,” McMillan said.The open ACE workshop is for any provincial or national squad athlete from any sport and will be held at the Taurama Aquatic and Indoor Centre on Tuesday July 26 from 5-6.30pm.Entry is free for the first 100 athletes.One of the guest speakers, Sanj Silva is a former first-class cricketer in New Zealand and Sri Lanka. After his playing career ended in 2001 he moved into the banking industry, holding senior management positions with ANZ and Westpac. For the last four years he has worked as the National Personal Development Manager for the NZ Cricket Players Association (NZCPA), overseeing programs that support current and former professional cricketers find the appropriate life balance and develop a broader range of non-cricket skills.Silva’s presentation theme on “Better People Make Better Athletes” is about finding the right life balance to enhance performance during an athlete’s career and allowing the transition into a successful new career once they retire.Silva’s presentation will focus on three key areas;Personal Development – building your personal brand and ‘soft skills’,Risk Management – managing the personal stresses of elite sport; andCareer Transitioning – setting yourself up for a successful and satisfying career post-sport.last_img read more

Kroos is the talisman of Madrid

first_img12/9/17Real Madrid – Seville5-0 08/20/17Deportivo – Real Madrid 0-3 11/07/18Viktoria Plzen – Real Madrid0-5 FAYEZ NURELDINE & nbsp; (AFP) ‘); return false; “class =” item-multimedia “>Kroos and Varane celebrate the first goal against Valencia.FAYEZ NURELDINE (AFP) 05/14/17Real Madrid – Seville4-1 02/10/18Real Madrid – Real Sociedad5-2 2/13/16Real Madrid – Athletic4-2 04/26/15Celtic – Real Madrid2-4 Toni Kroos is a footballer from before. Axis of the center of the field of Real Madrid, works without making too much noise, always complies and just makes mistakes. Unfortunately for Zinedine Zidane, the German midfielder does not usually take out his brilliant punch, but when he does it is a guarantee. Since it arrived in summer 2014, the ‘8’ has scored in 17 official matches and everyone has something in common: when the team celebrates a target of theirs, they end up winning the duel. It is the talisman of this Madrid. All Kroos goals in Real MadridIn his first white season, Kroos signed a poor baggage of two goals, but also 14 assists. His first goal as a Real Madrid player arrived at Santiago Bernabéu, before the Vallecano Ray. His Madrid dominated with an iron fist and took the three points by scoring (5-1). The second was late. It was before him Celtic, on day 33 of the national league championship. He put the 1-1 in an even match that ended with a triumph of those of Ancelotti (at that time coach) by two goals to four. At that time, they completed the scorer chapter James (in his first stage) and Chicharito with a double.The 2015-16 was not the best for Kroos in scoring terms. He closed his campaign again with a brilliant number of goal passes (13), but only celebrated one target in the victory against the Athletic in the Bernabéu (4-2). He took that weight off on 16-17, with 16 assists, but four goals. These were accompanied with triumph before the Naples in the first round of Champions, victory against Celtic (2-1 and decisive goal in 81 ‘), three points against the Seville and three others, again, against the Vigo team, one of their favorite rivals.Kroos goals at Real Madrid 2/15/17Real Madrid – Naples3-1 08/27/16Real Madrid – Celtic2-1 05/17/17Celtic – Real Madrid 1-4center_img Of course, their statistics have turned into victory: against Celta, Galatasaray, Leganés and the Super Cup duel against Valencia, Real Madrid heard the final whistle ahead on the scoreboard. In addition, the trump rule is also met in four of the matches he has attended. In all, except the Bernabéu against Bruges, with the team of Zidane passing one of the worst potholes of the season. The ‘8’ has gone from being questioned, to renew until 2023 and give its best white level. Zidane, Valverde, team ambition … Many factors before a reality: Kroos is baton and talisman.Only Piqué and Banega beat himIt was previously exposed and is evidence, Kroos shines on the pass and contributes momentarily in the definition. But its endorsement is the creation and the numbers are on its side. Pique is, so far, the player with the most correct passes has given in LaLiga Santander (1,165) and Banega follows him with (1,090). In the third podium drawer the center of Real Madrid appears, with a total of 1,070 correct deliveries. In addition, most of them are done in a rival field and with a fabulous success rate (more than 90% of success). The league championship statistics get used to seeing him at the top. The German machinery does not fail and shows that the doubters were wrong. Similarly, AS conducted a survey and 64% of Internet users did not celebrate its continuity. He has spoken in the field and now all Madrid support him blindly. DateMatchOutcome 1/8/20Valencia – Real Madrid1-3 Before Valencia it was not going to be otherwise. Kroos scored the first goal of the match and it was, again, of great beauty. The German saw Jaume Domenech out of position and connected a right from the direct corner to the goal. An Olympic goal in one of the great events so far this season. He barely showed effusivity in the celebration, in line with what he used to do. Performance, consistency, efficiency and noise to the other side. With just 30 years old, live his best moment in a Madrid that knows that so much of Toni is synonymous with success.His goal, in addition, definitely silences the doubts that were around his figure. Actually, since the new Zinedine Zidane project started, Kroos has demonstrated to the coach that he is not mistaken by turning his trust in him. In fact, the presence of Fede Valverde, a lung in the spinal cord, and the good moment of Casemiro They have helped the German to enjoy more freedom in the midfield and to be able to impose his football. The statistics speak for themselves: adds more than 90% of percentage in the pass in League and already accumulates four goals and five assists since the king’s sport was restarted last August. 05/12/18Real Madrid – Celtic6-0 08/17/19Celtic – Real Madrid 1-3 01/27/18Valencia – Real Madrid1-4 11/8/14Real Madrid – Lightning5-1 10/30/18Real Madrid – Leganés5-0 10/22/18Galatasaray – Real Madrid0-1 Already in the summer of 2017, Kroos would premiere LaLiga with a goal against Deportivo de la Coruña (0-3). In that campaign he would sign numbers that any striker would accept: five goals and seven assists in the league championship. Madrid would also win Seville, Valencia, Real Society Y Celtic (again) thanks to the German scorer’s participation. But in 2018-19, the season in which he was questioned and did not enjoy enough confidence on the grass because of the bad moment of the team, he did not continue his good goalscorer dynamics. Just scored against the Viktoria Plzen, in one more win in the group stage of Champions (0-5).last_img read more

Embarba, a step away from Espanyol

first_imgThey negotiated this Monday in Madrid and it will close, except for a major surprise, this Tuesday. As Cope advanced, Espanyol will be done with the services of Adrián Embarba, franchise player of Rayo Vallecano, to reinforce the right-handed end, the position that was still lame after the additions of Raúl de Tomás in the lead and Leandro Cabrera, just a few hours ago, for the axis of defense. And throw the parakeet club down the direct path. Espanyol will pay the ten million of Embarba’s termination clause, as the Lightning had been requesting since the contacts began last week, or failing that a very close amount. And, having reached an agreement between clubs, you can do so in installments, so that between the operation within the perico salary limit, which for this winter market had increased by 12 million (from 68 to 80 today) and culminates after investing 20 fixed (and other 3.5 variables) in De Tomás and nine, in another clause, by Cabrera. All of them, equally, in installments. Throw the house through the Chen Yansheng window in search of permanence.Embarba is a saint and a sign of Rayo in Segunda, a market that, as emphasized by AS a few days ago, was tracking the direction of professional football directed by Francisco Joaquín Pérez Rufete every time he saw how the options of Cristian Tello, Betis, and Ibai were complicated Gómez, of the Athletic Club, which nevertheless have remained with possibilities until the end. The end will be reunited with Raúl de Tomás, his partner in the previous two seasons, in which it is expected to be a good partnership for an Embarba that this course already has seven goals and up to 11 assists.last_img read more

Barça staff lowers salary and donates to employees

first_imgThe soap opera of the negotiation between the Barcelona directive and the first football team for the salary reduction in the framework of a temporary employment regulation file (ERTE) has concluded with an agreement of which the details are not known, but which closes with the players of the first one, lowering the salary by more than 70%, but very far from the board.Messi issued a statement As captain of the team defending that the club has put them under the spotlight and being very hard on the board. The captain defends that they “ALWAYS” (highlights it in capitals) have helped the club when asked.And to prove it, the Argentinean announces that the squad will a series of donations and financial resignations so that the employees of the entity’s non-sports staff affected by the ERTE do not have to avail themselves of it and they can continue to collect their full salary.It remains to be seen how this agreement is carried out in detail, but the ERTE will be presented in the next 24/48 hours.In this sense, the club was willing to act unilaterally and had issued an ultimatum the staff in the sense that as soon as they had the documentation prepared, they would present it to the Department of Treball of the Generalitat. “The club will present the ERTE, if the players have changed their minds, perfect, if not, we will also present it. It is not necessary an agreement to present an ERTE for reasons of force majeure ”, they had defended from the direction of the club.This Monday, the entity explained the agreement in this note: “The Board of Directors of FC Barcelona, ​​the members of the staff of all professional sports and most of the basketball team They have reached an agreement for the reduction of their wages during the time that the alert status is prolonged due to Covid-19.In the case of the first soccer team, the reduction will be more than 70% initially raised by the club. This additional contribution from the squad, plus the contribution that the Club will make, will guarantee 100% of the salaries of all non-sports personnel, who will undergo an ERTE this week.The club wants to thank the involvement of its professional athletes, in a situation as exceptional as that generated as a result of this health emergency. “The players, through the mouth of Messi explained in previous days that the delay of the agreement was only due to the fact that the best solutions for everyone were being sought.Now, it seems that an issue is solved, but another uncertain question opens, which is the relationship of the staff with the board.last_img read more

The Tajik adventure of Manuel Bleda

first_imgManuel Bleda, on his stage in Istiklol Belarus and Tajikistan – with the permission of Nicaragua and Burundi – have become the last haven of hope for soccer fans around the world. There, nothing more and nothing less than in two of the few countries whose sport challenges COVID-19, played Manuel Bleda (Sagunto, 1990) between 2014 and 2016. The Valencia striker, now in the Kitchee in Hong Kong, remembers his time at Belshina and Istiklol. An adventure full of coincidences that led him to record his name in the history of the most important club in Tajikistan. Everything could change, yes, a year earlier, when his departure to the Belaz Torpedo ended up being interrupted for financial reasons: “I signed and did a preseason month in Antalya, but when I was in Spain finalizing the move they told me that they could not pay my training fees and they proposed to wait a year“Bleda, disappointed after seeing his first attempt to play abroad fail, ended up in Dani Pons’ Alzira, “a coach who has always brought out the best in me”. The Valencian striker lived one of the best seasons he remembers there. And in March siren songs came again from Belarus: “They called me back, but I was no longer the Torpedo“It was Belshina, against whom he had played a friendly match months before, the team that launched fully into Bleda:” It cost me because Alzira had become my family. People said that where he was going, that he was crazy, but I was very clear and I left. “And there, in Babruisk, a city of 230,000 inhabitants 340 kilometers from the border with Russia, he spent six months” full of good moments “:”The coach welcomed me like a son because he was the only one from the non-Russian speaking club. The only bad thing is that he did not charge“Manuel Bleda points out:” From time to time they gave something, 15 or 20%. We lived in a hotel and we hardly had any expenses, but it is difficult to endure such a long time. I had to leave, but when I left we had already saved the category, which was the main objective of the club “.To Tajikistan by chanceFrom Babruisk to Tajikistan to play for FC Istiklol. 3,600 kilometers that Manuel Bleda traveled by chance: “Mubin Ergashev, coach who combined the Tajik team with Istiklol, traveled to Belarus to visit the BATE stadium before playing a friendly there. We had to visit them and he saw me play. I did well and he was waiting for me when he left. He gave me his card and we met the next day. The conditions were very good and I came for five months without charge, so we agreed, “recalls Manuel Bleda from Hong Kong:” I was very happy there. We won all the local titles at stake and reached the final of the AFC Cup -Competition equivalent to the Europa League in Asia- “. Istiklol fell to Johor FC, which does not detract from the role he played in what was his first participation in the continental championship. “I didn’t realize I had scored the 500th goal until I got to the locker room. The president came down to congratulate me.”center_img “Istiklol is a very powerful club. The owner is the nephew of the country’s president and practically all the national team players have ever played there. When I was there it showed that he played for a big club, “recalls Bleda, who defines the Tajik player as” technically good but tactically scarce. “” The country’s president is investing a lot of money in improving infrastructure and I am sure that little by little they will increase their prestige in Asia. They have already grown a lot lately, although there is still a lot of distance between the top finishers and the rest, “adds the Valencia striker.During his stay in Dushanbe, the capital and largest city of Tajikistan, Manuel Bleda left his name engraved in the history of the Istiklol. He did it after signing the goal 500 In the history of the Tajik club in local competitions, something that he did not realize until the end of the match against Khujand FC: “I had no idea. I realized when, with the game over, everyone started congratulating me. Also the president, who went down to the locker room. ” In what was his first adventure in Asia, the Spaniard got used to playing in extreme temperatures and taking advantage of the altitude: “We played at 3,000 meters, something that we could get a lot of out of. The fields were filled from start to finish and I still have contact with some of the players I met. I have very good memories and I wish I could visit them one day“A bus as a locker roomManuel Bleda has fond memories of his adventure in Tajikistan, but nothing like the day his team, Istiklol, had to use the bus as a dressing room: “We were playing the Cup against a small team and when we got to the field we realized there was nothing else. No bleachers, no toilets … The funny thing came when the driver got on the bus with the suitcases and said that we had to change there. Suddenly people began to appear. We were in balls and everyone watching! It was cold and it was raining a lot, but it was very funny. There were no showers either, and we had to go home sweaty. It was three hours … Good thing the club paid for a hotel so we could wash up halfway. “last_img read more

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