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Alisson becomes latest Liverpool star to lay into Pickford after his horror tackle on van Dijk

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alisson becomes latest liverpool star to lay into pickford after his horror tackle on van dijk

Alisson has become the latest of the Liverpool contingent to criticise Jordan Pickford for the reckless challenge that has ended Virgil van Dijk‘s season.

The Dutch defender required surgery on his knee after a poor challenge from the Everton goalkeeper in the Merseyside derby earlier this month saw him suffer serious anterior cruciate ligament damage.

Liverpool team-mates Adrian and Georginio Wijnaldum were already among the Anfield stars who insisted they could not defend the England No 1 for the tackle, with the latter labelling it ‘stupid’.

Alisson is the latest Liverpool star to criticise Jordan Pickford his tackle on Virgil van Dijk

Alisson is the latest Liverpool star to criticise Jordan Pickford his tackle on Virgil van Dijk

Alisson is the latest Liverpool star to criticise Jordan Pickford his tackle on Virgil van Dijk

Van Dijk required surgery after the challenge left him with anterior cruciate ligament damage

Van Dijk required surgery after the challenge left him with anterior cruciate ligament damage

Van Dijk required surgery after the challenge left him with anterior cruciate ligament damage

Now, speaking to Sky Sports, Brazilian Alisson admitted that while goalkeeper’s can have different techniques when tackling insisted that Pickford’s challenge was ‘an unnecessary moment’. 

‘Every goalkeeper has a different way to play, a different way to move, but on that moment 100 per cent it is not a necessary movement,’ he said.

‘But thinking what I have in my mind when I go for a situation, I go to finish the situation because if I go too soft I know the opponent can score.

‘Everyone has their own way to go for the ball. I don’t agree with that [Pickford’s] way, everybody can see that but yeh it was just an unnecessary moment and movement.’

Goalkeeper Adrian also struggled to defend Pickford for the reckless nature of the tackle

Goalkeeper Adrian also struggled to defend Pickford for the reckless nature of the tackle

Goalkeeper Adrian also struggled to defend Pickford for the reckless nature of the tackle

Georginio Wijnaldum also labelled the challenge as 'stupid' in a scathing assessment of it

Georginio Wijnaldum also labelled the challenge as 'stupid' in a scathing assessment of it

Georginio Wijnaldum also labelled the challenge as ‘stupid’ in a scathing assessment of it

Dutch international Wijnaldum was far more scathing in his assessment earlier this month, adding: ‘The way Pickford went in was completely stupid in my opinion.

‘I don’t believe he wanted to injure Virgil but the way he made the tackle he didn’t care about what happened after the tackle. It’s happened a lot in games against Everton.

‘In my opinion they take it too far in the games we play against them. I know it’s a derby and sometimes it goes over the top but it was too much. It was not the only tackle like that. Richarlison on Thiago was also a nasty one. That’s what annoys me the most.

‘Accidents can always happen in football. You can be unlucky and injure someone but the way they were doing it was completely unacceptable. It makes it even harder when they don’t get punished, in this case Pickford.’

Now Alisson has added his opinion and deemed the Pickford tackle an 'unnecessary' moment

Now Alisson has added his opinion and deemed the Pickford tackle an 'unnecessary' moment

Now Alisson has added his opinion and deemed the Pickford tackle an ‘unnecessary’ moment

Despite playing the same position as Pickford, 33-year-old Liverpool keeper Adrian admitted he could not find a viable way of finding an excuse for his Everton counterpart.

‘It was a very bad challenge in a very bad position of Virgil’s body,’ said the Reds shot-stopper to Sky Sports.

‘It was late. No player is allowed to do this kind of challenge.

‘I’m a goalkeeper and I always defend goalkeepers, but going for a ball like this in that case… I don’t know.

Liverpool were left incensed Pickford was not punished for the challenge by VAR David Coote

Liverpool were left incensed Pickford was not punished for the challenge by VAR David Coote

Liverpool were left incensed Pickford was not punished for the challenge by VAR David Coote

‘It’s not fair in that situation because he hasn’t got much chance to block the ball in that position, just to hurt the other player.’

Liverpool left Goodison Park with just one point after the game ended in a 2-2 draw, with Henderson’s stoppage-time winner ruled out due to a controversial offside call.

Everton keeper Pickford was not be punished for the challenge on Van Dijk as it was seen by referee Michael Oliver, leading to further fury at Anfield.

Liverpool were also livid after Pickford’s lunge went unpunished with David Coote, the official overseeing proceedings at Stockley Park, failing to look at whether Everton’s goalkeeper should have been dismissed.

Fabinho has been deputising in van Dijk's absence but sustained a hamstring injury on Tuesday

Fabinho has been deputising in van Dijk's absence but sustained a hamstring injury on Tuesday

Fabinho has been deputising in van Dijk’s absence but sustained a hamstring injury on Tuesday

Fabinho will not play against Man City but the injury is reportedly not as bad as first feared

Fabinho will not play against Man City but the injury is reportedly not as bad as first feared

Fabinho will not play against Man City but the injury is reportedly not as bad as first feared

Remarkably, Sportsmail was told earlier this month that Coote thought the offside — which he checked forensically — nullified what happened afterwards.

Sportsmail also revealed last week referee Michael Oliver and Coote will be scrutinised in an official mid-season review for the shocking decision not to send Pickford off.

Fabinho and Joe Gomez will deputise in van Dijk’s absence, but Liverpool’s injury crisis only seemed to worsen when the Brazilian suffered a hamstring victory in the victory against Midtjylland on Tuesday.

And while Fabinho – naturally a deep-lying midfielder – looks set to miss the crucial clash against Manchester City next weekend, reports have since emerged that his injury is not bad as first feared with concerns he could have been out for six months. 

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Watch as ‘lonely’ Lionel Messi walks alone in Barcelona training after Luis Suarez exit leaving fans heartbroken

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watch as lonely lionel messi walks alone in barcelona training after luis suarez exit leaving fans heartbroken

LIONEL MESSI fans have been left devastated after seeing their man look distant and subdued during Barcelona training.

The Argentine saw his best friend Luis Suarez forced out of the club in the summer, in the aftermath of a disastrous 2019-20 campaign.

Messi appeared distant in the training session

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Messi appeared distant in the training session
The Argentine's head was bowed while receiving instructions from Koeman

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The Argentine’s head was bowed while receiving instructions from Koeman

When Messi, 33, himself tried to follow, however, Barca refused – making it clear that he would have to take legal action if he was to leave his boyhood club.

So he remains at Barcelona, but things just don’t look the same.

In a video that has circulated online, Messi can be seen walking away from his team-mates as they entered the training field.

And as Ronald Koeman dished out some instructions, his No10 had his head bowed, looking as if he perhaps didn’t want to be there.

As the session got underway, his team-mates including Jordi Alba and Philippe Coutinho appeared to be in good spirits.

But Messi looked as if it was a struggle to conjure the energy.

The subdued star didn’t go unnoticed, as sad fans flocked online to express their grief at the situation.

One wrote: “A lot of fans don’t care about how he feels, he’s drained out, he’s not right mentally after all the transfer drama, I just want the best for him he looks lonely”.

Messi lost his mate Suarez to Atletico Madrid in the summer

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Messi lost his mate Suarez to Atletico Madrid in the summerCredit: EPA

And another mused: “A lot of people think Messi is just a robot with no feelings, at the end of the day, he is a human with real emotions, and regardless of the fact that he’s not been performing to his standards, it seems like he feels lonely at the club rn, and disinterested as well.”

To which a third replied: “He’s exhausted mentally, went through so many things that I don’t know how can he still keep up. It 100% has a major effect on his form.”

Messi does at least still have his pal Suarez to chat to on the phone.

Following Atletico’s 1-0 victory over Barca on Saturday night, the Uruguayan told Marca: “We talk about life, the virus, everything, but very little about football, about the goals we miss or about tactical systems.”

The loss saw Barcelona fall to 13th in the table, having won just three of their opening eight games under Koeman.

Messi and Co fell to a 1-0 defeat to Atletico at the weekend

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Messi and Co fell to a 1-0 defeat to Atletico at the weekendCredit: Getty Images – Getty
Pep Guardiola admits Lionel Messi’s future is up in the air as Man City plan transfer bid for unsettled Barcelona star

This post first appeared on thesun.co.uk

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PSG assistant says Neymar goes to ground because he has ‘extremely sensitive feet’

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psg assistant says neymar goes to ground because he has extremely sensitive feet

PSG assistant Zsolt Low has defended Neymar from accusations he is a diver, bizarrely claiming the Brazilian forward has ‘incredibly sensitive feet’ and is left in agony when he is fouled.

The former Barcelona star has a reputation for playing things up on the pitch and has been seen rolling around on the turf after a handful of challenges in Ligue 1 and the Champions League.

But Low, right hand man to PSG boss Thomas Tuchel, leapt to Neymar’s defence, pointing out that he suffers with an issue in his feet that has plagued him for most of his career and brushing off accusations that he overreacts. 

Neymar has been defended over his perceived theatrics by PSG assistant boss Zsolt Low

Neymar has been defended over his perceived theatrics by PSG assistant boss Zsolt Low

Neymar has been defended over his perceived theatrics by PSG assistant boss Zsolt Low 

He claimed the Brazilian had 'incredibly sensitive feet' and feels huge pain when he is fouled

He claimed the Brazilian had 'incredibly sensitive feet' and feels huge pain when he is fouled

He claimed the Brazilian had ‘incredibly sensitive feet’ and feels huge pain when he is fouled

‘Neymar has incredibly sensitive feet,’ he told Bild, via Goal.

‘If he is kicked, it gives him extreme pain.’

The 28-year-old, who led the Parisiens to the Champions League final and domestic treble last season, has previously been slammed for showboating in the French top division with his attitude called into question too. 

But Low said he was simply misunderstood – describing him as a ‘warm guy’ who is painted as ‘arrogant’, and insisted he would always try to play on if possible after being impeded. 

The former Barcelona star has a reputation for diving and and overreacting after a challenge

The former Barcelona star has a reputation for diving and and overreacting after a challenge

The former Barcelona star has a reputation for diving and and overreacting after a challenge

‘Neymar is a warm guy, very open,’ he added.

‘Of course it sometimes seems arrogant what he does on the pitch. But if he is fouled, then he tries to dribble past his opponent at the next opportunity.

‘That is his way of responding to the harshness.’

Since joining PSG for a world record £220m in 2017, Neymar has sought to become the world’s best player and has netted 72 times in 92 appearances. Things have not always gone smoothly for him at the Parc de Princes and fell out with supporters in the last campaign after being linked with a return to Barcelona. 

Low insisted Neymar was 'a warm guy' and that he is misunderstood as an 'arrogant' player

Low insisted Neymar was 'a warm guy' and that he is misunderstood as an 'arrogant' player

Low insisted Neymar was ‘a warm guy’ and that he is misunderstood as an ‘arrogant’ player

His spell in Paris has also blighted by injuries. Last season he managed 19 in all competitions after being sidelined at the start of the campaign. 

This season his progress has been similarly hampered and has been ruled out for the last few weeks with a groin issue. When asked if Neymar could return for the club’s Champions League game against Leipzig, Low said there was a chance but admitted their star man was not fully fit.

‘He’s not yet at 100 per cent. But we need him with his experience and his quality.’ 

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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West Brom ‘hold talks with American consortium over £150million takeover’ in potential January transfer boost for club

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WEST BROM have reportedly held talks with an American consortium over a proposed £150million takeover.

The Telegraph reports the Baggies’ controlling shareholder Guochuan Lai turned down an offer earlier this year but negotiations remain open for either a full takeover or minority stake up to 15 per cent.

West Brom could be taken over by an American consortium

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West Brom could be taken over by an American consortiumCredit: AFP or Licensors

The report states the US consortium are being advised by an individual with vast Premier League experience and they are weighing up whether to launch another bid if the asking price drops.

China-based Lai would sell for £150m – having paid ex-chairman Jeremy Peace £200m in 2016 – but the consortium believe that is too high with the club’s Prem status in doubt.

Slaven Bilic‘s men were promoted to the top flight as runners-up in the Championship last season.

But they are yet to win a single game and sit 19th on three points after drawing three of their opening nine games.

A takeover bid could be delayed until later this season when the club’s survival prospects will be easier to determine.

If a majority deal does not go through a smaller 15 per cent purchase could be sanctioned after it was discussed with chief executive Xu Ke.

Ke is based at West Brom‘s training ground and reports to Lai in China.

The report claims other potential buyers have shown interest and held initial talks regarding a takeover in the last year.

How many fans each Premier League club will be allowed based on October tiers
How many fans each Premier League club will be allowed based on October tiers

Some Baggies supporters are unhappy with the lack of investment from the club’s current owners.

Croatian boss Bilic was handed a reduced tramsfer war chest of just £20m, following the coronavirus pandemic, to finance their return to the Premier League.

A big-money takeover would boost West Brom’s hopes of making a dent in the market and the club have been linked with fellow strugglers Sheffield United‘s Welsh defender Rhys Norrington-Davies, 21.

But Blades boss Chris Wilder confirmed he was not looking to sell any of his young players.

West Brom manager Slaven Bilic gets drenched in champagne after clinching promotion into the Premier League

This post first appeared on thesun.co.uk

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