Cesc Fabregas snubs Chelsea team-mates in his dream five-a-side team

first_imgAdvertisement Cesc Fabregas snubs Chelsea team-mates in his dream five-a-side team Comment Cesc Fabregas picked a star-studded five-a-side team (Picture: Getty)Cesc Fabregas didn’t name a single Chelsea player in his dream five-a-side team from players that he’s played with during his career.The Spaniard’s enjoyed a glittering career that’s been spent at elite European clubs such as Arsenal, Barcelona and Chelsea.Added to that is the hugely successful international career that Fabregas has enjoyed with Spain, where he’s won two European Championships and a World Cup.But some of Fabregas’ best football was played at Stamford Bridge, where he inspired the Blues to the Premier League title in his debut campaign in west London in 2015.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENTHowever, despite playing with the likes of N’Golo Kante, Eden Hazard and Diego Costa, Fabregas didn’t name a single Chelsea player in his dream five-a-side team and packed it instead with Spanish players and Thierry Henry.Speaking to Henry on Instagram Live, Fabregas said: ‘I need a goalkeeper, I’m an offensive coach but I need a goalkeeper. For what we experience together and the big moments we had together I will go with Iker [Casillas].‘He was incredible in big moments. I think Iker in important moments, the moments where it is history, I think I have to go for him. ‘By the way you’re [Henry] up front obviously, you’re in my all-time XI. ‘I would have to have Lionel Messi 100% because I think between you and him we’d score a few goals. Casillas is the player that will save them. Fabregas remains close friends with Messi (Picture: Getty)‘I have to say this is a player that a player in England everyone talks about him now but I played with him when I was 16 years old and it’s David Silva. I always had this understanding with him. There’s players that you never talk about as best in the world but I had special feeling with him. ‘We had a career with Spain growing up and then winning everything together. Iniesta and Silva are the two players that I always felt ‘wow’ I’m enjoying so much in midfield, they can pass and move. They have the intelligence that when I move forward they can drop to get it. You don’t need to be in the same position, you can change because other players are intelligent to fill the hole for you. I love that. ‘Silva and Iniesta have to be there for me. I don’t have any defender but I don’t care. I will have a goalkeeper that can save everything, two magicians in midfield and two GOATS [Greatest Of All Time] up front.MORE: Cesc Fabregas reveals he upset Arsenal star Nwankwo Kanu in very first training session Advertisement Metro Sport ReporterThursday 14 May 2020 9:45 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link2.7kShareslast_img read more

Sherwood brushes off speculation

first_imgTim Sherwood preferred to focus on the performance of his players rather than the mounting speculation about his Tottenham future after the comprehensive defeat of Sunderland. The build-up to Monday’s Barclays Premier League clash was dominated by a report that claimed the Spurs head coach’s tenure would end this summer, regardless of how results went between now and the end of the campaign. Sherwood insisted before the match that the speculation would not affect him or his players and so it proved, with the hosts running out 5-1 victors at White Hart Lane. Woeful defending saw Lee Cattermole open the scoring for the relegation-threatened Black Cats, but Spurs responded impressively through an Emmanuel Adebayor brace complemented by efforts from Harry Kane, Christian Eriksen and Gylfi Sigurdsson. It was a good end to a tough day for under-fire Sherwood – not that the Spurs boss would admit it. “No, it was a good end to a day where we needed to win the game,” he said. “We came here and we knew we had to respond to the game against Liverpool and we did that today. “After giving them a goal – we’re making a habit of this and we have to stop it – I thought we controlled the game from start to finish. “We stayed patient with the football, moved it around, made the pitch very big and got our offensive players on the ball in the correct areas of the field. “We created 29 attempts to score a goal – it was the most dominant football match you’re ever going to see.” Pressed on whether the talk had been at all unsettling, Sherwood added: “It doesn’t affect me. “I am just professional, I know I have got an opportunity to manage this football club and I owe it to the players and the fans who come and support us to do the job professionally. “That’s what I did, just got on with the job.” The players did just that too, with Adebayor lending his backing to Sherwood after netting a brace. “I am not surprised he is backing me, he never played before I came in here,” the Spurs boss said with a laugh. “Listen, I’ve always said about Ade that he is a top professional. I hear all these stories and I see it myself, but he has never caused me a problem. “He is a real credit to the football club, the way he conducts himself with the young players. “That’s why he scores so many goals. He is a fantastic trainer and just gets on with it. I would have been mad not to give him the opportunity to play, wouldn’t I? “I think the players are backing me and I am backing them as well. They get from me honesty – I tell them when they’re not doing well and pat them on the back when they are doing well. “I always wanted honesty from my managers and at some clubs I didn’t get that, which was very disappointing. You live and learn.” While the direction of Tottenham remains unclear, the only way Sunderland are heading his down unless things change quickly. Gus Poyet’s side have taken just one point from their last seven matches and languish bottom of the table, seven points adrift of safety. They have two games in hand on many of their relegation rivals but manager Poyet concedes his side need a miracle to stave off the drop. “I don’t change my opinion,” the Black Cats boss said. “I am very honest and I know where I am. It doesn’t matter if it was five minutes ago or if you asked me on Friday. “I am realistic, when you look at the table and the games that we have got left, about how many we need to win. “I think we need a miracle. We need something unique, a shock because if not I cannot see it coming.” Press Associationlast_img read more

Paine reveals Australia’s secret Ashes injury toll

first_imgAUSTRALIA captain Tim Paine has revealed he broke his thumb during the fifth Ashes Test, while he has praised paceman Peter Siddle for bowling through the pain of a hip injury for most of the match.The Test skipper has also revealed he won’t be available to play in the KFC BBL this summer as he looks to focus on playing red-ball cricket.England won the fifth Test at The Oval this week to level the five-match series at 2-2, although Australia retained the Ashes urn as the holders of the famous old trophy.To add to the disappointment of losing the match in south London, Paine had to play through the pain of a busted thumb.“My thumb was broken towards the end of that Test but it is not displaced, so I should be right to get back into training early,” Paine wrote in his column for The Australian.It is not known exactly when or how Paine suffered the injury or whether it’s his right or left thumb.The Test skipper was not selected for Tasmania’s opening two Marsh Cup games next week as the majority of Australia’s Ashes squad were given a well-earned break, but he’s expected to feature for the Tigers in the lead-up to Australia’s first Test of the home summer, against Pakistan in November.Paine famously required seven separate operations on his right index finger after it was broken during an exhibition match in 2010, almost ending his career prematurely.He also suffered a hairline fracture in his right thumb during the Johannesburg Test last year, his first as captainIn his column, Paine also touched on the hip injury suffered by Siddle on the opening day of the Test, which the Victorian hinted at during the match.“Peter Siddle tore a hip flexor bowling on the first morning,” Paine wrote.“He has copped a bit of criticism for not bowling as well as he we know he can, but the team knows just how heroic he was. A lot of other people wouldn’t have bowled again in the match, but he pushed on because he didn’t want to leave Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins to do extra work. He’s a warrior, Sidds, and we love him deeply for that.”Siddle was picked ahead of Mitchell Starc and James Pattinson for the Oval Test and was uncharacteristically expensive on the opening day, conceding 0-61 from 17 overs in the first innings.He also leaked four-runs-an-over in the second innings, although he did pick up the key wickets of Joe Denly for 94 and Jos Buttler for 47.“I hurt my hip early on day one, so it’s been a bit of a graft in the last couple of days,” Siddle told the BBC after day three.“It’s been hard work, but it’s a Test match, you do what you can do and you stay out there.”It is understood Siddle’s injury, like Paine’s, is not overly serious and he’s expected to be available to play for Victoria next month.Paine said while playing Big Bash cricket for the Hobart Hurricanes is not on his radar for this season, he’s keen to return to the 20-over game once his Test career is over.“I’m keen to see just how far we can take this (Test) team and I’ve decided to give up the BBL so I can concentrate on red ball cricket and being in the best place to lead them,” he wrote.“Being captain is draining and I think I should take every chance to recharge my batteries.“I’ll go back to the BBL when I’m finished, but for now my focus is on my main job.”last_img read more

Wheddon tinkers with lineup in tie with Pittsburgh

first_imgWhen Phil Wheddon’s players have a chance to play, he expects them to make a difference. Every time they step on the field, they have to make a difference. That was the message the Syracuse women’s soccer coach left with his team, following its 1-1 tie with Pittsburgh Sunday afternoon. And SU was able to maintain that mindset long enough to stave off a conference loss that might have caved in its season. Wheddon credits that mindset for his team not faltering. ‘The team is gaining inspiration from each other,’ Wheddon said. ‘We challenge ourselves each day to get the ball on the ground and play a possession style of soccer. And we did that. As you saw, while making different changes in the team and putting different people in different positions, we still can do that.’ Wheddon ran out a lineup Sunday that was without regular starters Kayla Afonso, due to a red card suspension, and Megan Bellingham, due to a leg injury. On their behalf, fueled by their coach’s motivating words, several underclassmen made the most of increased playing time. With five substitutions in the first half alone, Wheddon tinkered with the lineup in an effort to answer Pittsburgh’s early goal. As a result, freshmen Karly O’Toole and Brittany Kinmond, along with sophomores Laura Jackson and Jenna Rickan, were each able to contribute to SU’s late comeback.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text Midfielder Alyscha Mottershead, an Iowa transfer who is seeing increased responsibility this season, doesn’t see SU’s collectively young roster as an issue. ‘I don’t really think having a young team means that we are going to play younger,’ Mottershead said. ‘Age is just a number, and the year in your class is just a number. A lot of people on our team, young or old, have a lot of experience. I think coming together as a team, we’ve all grown, and everyone on this team is a leader. Senior or junior, sophomore or freshman, I think everyone can hold their own.’ After extended back-and-forth volleying between the Orange and Panthers in the first half, Jackson entered the game with fewer than two minutes to play in the half. Over the next 15 minutes and into the second half, she was able place a free-kick service toward the net, lob a pass up and in front to Cecilia Borgstrom, and push another opportunity out wide to Tina Romagnuolo, all of which created open looks Syracuse wasn’t finding at the start of the game. For a player who started 18 of 19 games last season, Jackson was more than ready to come in and make something happen. ‘The biggest thing for me is just to make sure that I’m getting opportunities for my team,’ Jackson said. ‘I try and get the ball in to opportunities where we can obviously score and get the ball in the back of the net. I make sure that no runners get by me, and I check the runners at midfield.’ Syracuse entered this weekend’s play ranked 14 out of 16 Big East teams in goals scored. Although SU surely didn’t improve upon that ranking with its lone goal on Sunday, after back-to-back overtime games, it was still a few bounces away from a victory. For Kinmond, who saw action in both games, SU is moving in the right direction at a critical time of the year. ‘I know sometimes a lot of teams, by mid-October, start to decline a little bit,’ she said. ‘But I think that our team is just rising. Because we have a lot of players that come off the bench, there’s definitely a good team atmosphere.’ Playing without senior leader Bellingham this past weekend, SU got a good look at the future of the program. And with Rutgers and Seton Hall to play next week, Syracuse knows it will take a group effort to keep its season alive. Including the young players. It’ll take making a difference every time they step onto the field. ‘It doesn’t matter who we put in there, everyone has bought into what we’re trying to do,’ Wheddon said. ‘And everyone is getting better, day to day. We push each other every day in training. So they know what’s expected. And today, those players stepped on the field and made a difference.’ zoirvin@syr.edu Published on October 10, 2010 at 12:00 pm Facebook Twitter Google+center_img Commentslast_img read more