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New Barcelona coach Ronald Koeman insists he has a good relationship with Lionel Messi

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New Barcelona manager, Ronald Koeman, has insisted that there is no animosity between himself and  Barcelona favorite Lionel Messi, weeks after the Argentina captain chose to abandon his plans to leave the club.

 

Messi informed the club he wanted to leave Barcelona of at the end of last season, after the club humiliatingly lost 8-2 to Bayern Munich in the Champions League.

 

Messi, 33, after long discussions between his dad and the club board revealed that he would remain at the club than become embroiled in a messy legal battle with the club he has been at since 13.

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Messi has now returned to Barcelona ahead of the new season with his future in doubt, having entered the final season of his contract.

 

Koeman, brought in to replace Quique Setien after the defeat to Bayern, has said that any conflict that existed was between the player and club, and that he and Messi have spoken multiple times since he decided to stay at Camp Nou.

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“That has passed me reasonably well,” Koeman told Fox Sports.

“That was mainly a conflict between Messi and the club. I have spoken to Messi since then and we will continue as usual.”

 

Messi has said Barcelona’s poor recruiting in recent seasons was one of the reasons he wanted to leave but Koeman says the club appear likely to begin the new season with the squad they currently have.

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“We are now working towards the new season and I assume that we are going to do it with this group with which we are the preparation,” Koeman added.

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Manchester City announce £64m signing of Ruben Dias from Benfica on a six-year deal 

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Manchester City has announced the signing of Portuguese defender Ruben Dias from Benfica in a £64.3million move.

 

The 23-year-old who had his medical in Lisbon signed a six-year contract, which saw Nicolas Otamendi moved to Benfica for £13.7m as part of the deal.

 

‘I am a player that loves to win, a player for the team, for the fans, a player that loves this family spirit which I am feeling a lot since I have been here,’ Dias said.

 

‘I am an aggressive player and I love what I do. I love the game and without getting into too much detail, because it is something you will see when I start playing, the most important thing to say is I love to win and that is the thing you most need to know about me.

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Manchester City announce ?64m signing of Ruben Dias from Benfica on a six-year deal?

‘I am expecting the Premier League to be the reason why I wanted to be a football player. To have that feeling when I am on the field, when my arms get goosebumps.

 

‘That is it, that feeling, you cannot even put it into words. For me, the Premier League means all of that and to be able to play in the Premier League at a top club like City, it doesn’t get much bigger than that.’

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After failing to replace Vincent Kompany last year, City sporting director Txiki Begiristain revealed that the club are expecting Dias to take leadership responsibility.

 

‘Ruben is a player we have admired for some time and we have been impressed with how he has progressed at Benfica,’ Begiristain said.

 

‘He has developed into a real leader and as a defender, he has all the attributes we are looking for. He is strong in the air, good in one v one situations and technically, he is very good, so we are confident he can thrive in our system.

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Manchester City announce ?64m signing of Ruben Dias from Benfica on a six-year deal?

‘He is young but has gained valuable experience at a big European club in Benfica and we’re really pleased we’ve been able to sign him. He is another talented addition to the squad and someone who is only going to get better working under Pep.’

 

Dias, who becomes City’s third signing of the summer following the arrivals of Nathan Ake and Ferran Torres, will wear the No 3 shirt.

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Liverpool midfielder, Thiago Alcantara tests positive for Coronavirus

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Liverpool midfielder, Thiago Alcantara has tested positive for coronavirus and is self-isolating, the club confirmed on Tuesday.

 

The 29-year-old Spaniard only joined Liverpool from Bayern Munich last month in a deal worth up to £25m, and made his debut for the Premier League champions in a 2-0 win at Chelsea on September 20.

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He was a surprise absentee from Liverpool’s squad that faced Arsenal in Monday night’s 3-1 victory, but his omission has now been explained.

 

Liverpool released a statement via the club’s official Twitter account confirming his diagnosis: “Thiago Alcantara has tested positive for COVID-19 and is currently self-isolating according to the necessary guidelines.”

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“The 29-year-old, who missed Monday’s match against Arsenal, has exhibited minor symptoms of the virus but is in good health and is getting better.”

 

“The club has, and will continue to follow, all protocols relating to COVID-19 and Thiago will remain in self-isolation for the required period of time.”

 

LFC first-team doctor, Dr Jim Moxon, added: “It is the choice of each individual whether they reveal publicly the outcome of a COVID-19 test.

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“We have followed all the protocols to the letter and Thiago is OK. He will be self-isolating now as per the guidelines and hopefully he’ll be back with us soon.”

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Chelsea complete £22m signing of Senegalese goalkeeper Edouard Mendy from Rennes

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Chelsea have completed the signing of goalkeeper Edouard Mendy from Ligue 1 outfit Rennes in a £22m deal.

 

The Senegalese international, 28, has penned a five-year deal at Stamford Bridge and is expected to become Chelsea’s No 1 ahead of Kepa Arrizabalaga and Willy Caballero.

 

After signing his long-term contract with the Blues, Mendy said: ‘I am so excited to be joining Chelsea. It’s a dream for me to be a part of this exciting squad and to work with Frank Lampard and all of his coaching staff. I look forward to meeting my team-mates and can’t wait to get started.’

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ALSO READ:  Liverpool midfielder, Thiago Alcantara tests positive for Coronavirus

 

On signing Mendy, Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia said: ‘As soon as Petr Cech and our technical team identified Edouard as the most suitable goalkeeper to complement our existing group, there was only one player we wanted to bring in. Edouard arrives following a season of real success with Rennes, he is ambitious for more, and we welcome him to our club.’

 

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Edouard Mendy becomes Chelsea’s seventh signing after the arrival of Hakim Ziyech (Ajax) Malang Sarr (Nice) Ben Chilwell (Leicester) Thiago Silva (PSG), Timo Werner ( RB Leipzig ), and Kai Havertz ( Bayern Leverkusen).

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