Zidane hints Ronaldo to feature against Man United

first_img0Shares0000Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo could feature against former club Manchester United in the UEFA Super Cup © AFP/File / Glyn KIRKSkopje, Macedonia, Aug 7 – Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane indicated that Cristiano Ronaldo will feature in the UEFA Super Cup against Manchester United after travelling with the squad to Skopje on Monday.Ronaldo was surprisingly named in the reigning European champions’ group for Tuesday’s match in the Macedonian capital after only returning to training with his club over the weekend. His summer has been overshadowed by accusations of tax evasion in Spain, which led to him appearing in court last week, and speculation over his future.According to a report from Spanish radio station Cadena Ser, Ronaldo told the court he “would like to return to England” due to his tax troubles in Spain.The World Player of the Year was handed an extended summer break after playing for Portugal at the Confederations Cup in Russia. He also reportedly became a father to twins in June.But despite all that, Zidane said: “There have been a lot of things happening, a lot of noise around him as always, but he is relaxed.”Ronaldo’s last club appearance saw him score twice in the 4-1 Champions League final win over Juventus in Cardiff in early June as Madrid successfully defended the trophy.“What impresses me the most about him is that physically he is just as he was on the day of the final, which was two months ago now,” Zidane added at a press conference at the Philip II Arena.“In the end that is what interests me, him and everyone else.“The fact he is here with us means a lot because if he is with us he is here to play.”Having not played any part in Real’s pre-season tour of the United States — which featured a defeat on penalties to United in California — it would still be an enormous surprise if the 32-year-old started in Skopje against his former club.However, he took part in training on the Skopje pitch on Monday evening and he could get some game time as part of his preparations for the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup against Barcelona this Sunday.“Cris is a very important member of our squad,” said skipper Sergio Ramos.“It is important too that he travels with the team. He has a different role to any other player and his presence with us is always good, whether he plays or not.”Zidane took his entire 24-man squad to Macedonia for the game as Madrid look to win a trophy they also claimed last year, when they beat Sevilla 3-2 in extra time in the Norwegian city of Trondheim.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

Forgotten men of the Premier League: Who desperately needs to leave your club?

first_img James Wilson (Manchester United) – The striker enjoyed a dream debut scoring two goals against Hull City after being thrown in by United interim manager Ryan Giggs in May 2014. Since then things have not turned out as Wilson and fans had hoped. The forward spent the 2016/17 season on loan at Derby County but suffered a serious injury in October and returned to his parent club for treatment. With Marcus Rashford’s emergence as the latest Manchester United starlet people will begin to wonder what future Wilson has with Jose Mourinho’s team. Bakary Sako (Crystal Palace) – The Malian earned his move to the Premier League in 2015 after starring for Wolverhampton Wanderers in the Championship. After an average first season Sako’s second campaign for the Eagles has been worse. He made just eight appearances, scoring no goals, and his future at the club could be nearing an end. Jordy Hiwula (Huddersfield Town) – The ex-Manchester City man was signed by the Terriers in 2015 and has been on loan at Wigan, Walsall and Bradford City since. The forward has only featured once for Huddersfield but will hope to be part of David Wagner’s plans as they gear up for their Premier League adventure. Paul Robinson (Burnley) – The former England number one goalkeeper joined Burnley in January 2016 after being without a club following his release by Blackburn Rovers at the end of the 2015 season. As back-up to current England international Tom Heaton, Robinson’s playing time has been limited. He made his Burnley debut in November 2016 – his first Premier League appearance since 2012. Max Gradel (Bournemouth) – The Ivory Coast international was one of Bournemouth’s major signings after their promotion to the Premier League. However, opportunities in his first season were limited, thanks to a serious knee injury, and things didn’t improve the following campaign. The former Leeds man made just 11 Premier League appearances, all from the bench, and he has made it clear he wants to leave – though the Cherries want him to stay. 19 Arouna Kone (Everton) – In a move that will shock few the former Wigan striker’s time at Everton is about to come to an end following a season that brought eight appearances and two league cup goals. Kone’s lack of action will have tricked many into thinking he had already left but Ronald Koeman has allowed the forward to be released and is determined to bring in someone of higher quality. Kenedy (Chelsea) – The Brazilian looked to be a bright young prospect for the Blues after they signed him from Fluminense in August 2015. However, this season it has been a rare sight seeing the 21-year-old on a football pitch. Watford signed Kenedy on loan at the start of the season but he returned to Chelsea in December after struggling with injury and making just one appearance for the Hornets. He made just two further appearances for Antonio Conte’s side after his recall. 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 Florin Gardos (Southampton) – Suffered from injury but the Romanian defender has played just once in the last two seasons – a 5-0 FA Cup defeat to Arsenal in January 2017. Southampton have been thin at the back in the second half of the season but the fact Gardos still hasn’t played suggests the 28-year-old’s Saints future is nearing an end. 19 Doneil Henry (West Ham) – The Canadian centre-back was signed by West Ham back in January 2015 following a recommendation from former Blackburn Rovers captain Ryan Nelsen to then manager Sam Allardyce. However, the 24-year-old has had limited first team chances and spent time on loan at Blackburn before joining Danish side AC Horsens in the summer of 2016 on a season-long loan. The defender tore his ACL, in just his second start for the club, and returned to West Ham in January 2017. Georges-Kevin Nkoudou (Tottenham Hotspur) – After signing from Marseille in the summer of 2016 the 22-year-old hasn’t had quite the season he would have hoped for at Tottenham. Limited to a handful of substitute appearances, the Frenchman has admitted he needs to work harder if he is to force his way into a strong starting line-up. Recently had to apologise after being pictured in a Chelsea kit. 19 Stephen Ireland (Stoke City) – The Irish midfielder missed the entire 2016/17 season after suffering a double leg break in May 2016. He has recently been offered a new contract by the club and will hope to return to action in the near future. Achraf Lazaar (Newcastle United) – Signed in a £3m summer deal from Palermo the Moroccan left-back has had to play second fiddle to Paul Dummett as Newcastle won the Championship title. The 25-year-old made nine appearances for Rafa Benitez’s team and while he was adamant he would play more in the Premier League he is supposedly mulling over a move away. Bartosz Kapustka (Leicester City) – Who? Unless you were a die-hard Leicester fan you would be hard pushed to know anything about the 20-year-old Polish winger. Signed last summer for £7.5million Kapustka failed to make a single Premier League appearance for the Foxes and only featured three times in the FA Cup. Still has time on his side but significant improvement will be needed if he is to make an impact. Fabian Delph (Manchester City) – A former Aston Villa captain and England international who has struggled for game time since joining City in July 2015. Most fans will remember the midfielder’s controversial U-turn in signing for City, having pledged his future to Villa just a week before, but he has faded into obscurity after making just 12 appearances since Pep Guardiola arrived. Ben Watson (Watford) – The hero behind Wigan’s 2013 FA Cup triumph, the 31-year-old midfielder has been something of a spectator at Watford lately. Manager Walter Mazzarri, who only handed Watson four Premier League starts last season, has now gone but the midfielder will likely be seeking a new club if he is to get regular playing time again. Lucas Perez (Arsenal) – The forward was hailed as the ‘Spanish Jamie Vardy’ when he joined Arsenal from Deportivo La Coruna in August 2016. However, his debut campaign has proved to be a season of struggle for Perez as he made just two Premier League starts – with his last Arsenal appearance coming against non-league Lincoln in the FA Cup on 11 March. The striker is looking to leave the club though manager Arsene Wenger wants him to stay. Meanwhile, Yaya Sanogo, another forgotten man has confirmed he will leave the club in the summer when his contract expires. 19 Mike van der Hoorn (Swansea City) – The Dutch centre back was signed from Ajax last summer but failed to truly inspire in his seven Premier League starts. England Under-21 international Alfie Mawson soon stepped up to become first choice in defence and you wonder what the future holds for Van der Hoorn. Richie Towell (Brighton) – After moving from Dundalk in 2016, 25-year-old Irishman Towell has found opportunities hard to come by for Brighton during a season which saw them promoted from to the Premier League. While the club get set for their Premier League campaign it is highly likely Towell will be sent out on-loan next season after being awarded with a contract extension until 2019. 19 19 With so much at stake Premier League clubs have bolstered their squads to the maximum.The summer transfer window is just around the corner and England’s top tier sides will, no doubt, delve into the market to try and unearth more quality signings.However, with so many players incoming it inevitably leads to current squad members being left out and relegated to forgotten man status.So which players have become an afterthought and who did you forget was still a part of your club? 19 Callum McManaman (West Brom) – Another star from Wigan’s 2013 FA Cup win, McManaman was named man of the match in the final. However, the winger looks to be on his way out of the Hawthorns after the 26-year-old spent the second half of the season on loan at Sheffield Wednesday and Baggies boss Tony Pulis admitted he may have made a mistake in signing him. 19 19last_img read more