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Ever Banega is the bad boy playmaker and Sevilla star who blew away Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho 

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ever banega is the bad boy playmaker and sevilla star who blew away pep guardiola and jose mourinho

Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho have rarely found common ground during their careers, yet neither doubt the man determined to ensure Manchester United’s season ends without a trophy.

Ever Banega, the Sevilla playmaker, is a rock star off the pitch and an artist on it. Few can spot a pass, hit a dead ball or find space like the Argentine.

The 32-year-old is set to join Saudi Arabian club Al-Shabab after Sevilla’s season ends, and his departure to a little league is a pity for one of the best enganches — the Argentine term for a playmaker — of modern times. 

Ever Banega is the bad boy Sevilla playmaker that Manchester United will need to look out for

Ever Banega is the bad boy Sevilla playmaker that Manchester United will need to look out for

Ever Banega is the bad boy Sevilla playmaker that Manchester United will need to look out for

His dazzling display in the quarter-final win over Wolves highlighted Banega’s determination to end his Sevilla career with a third Europa League title. 

If he is given similar time and space by United in tomorrow’s semi-final, there is every chance he will hurt them just as badly.

Thankfully, Banega does damage to opponents these days rather than his own career.

During his first spell in Spain, at Valencia from 2008-14, Banega suffered one of football’s most bizarre injuries when he forgot to put the handbrake on when filling up at the petrol station. His car rolled back and broke his ankle.

Few can spot a pass, hit a ball or find space like the Argentine but he has a rockstar reputation

Few can spot a pass, hit a ball or find space like the Argentine but he has a rockstar reputation

Few can spot a pass, hit a ball or find space like the Argentine but he has a rockstar reputation

The Argentine midfielder was involved in an internet sex scandal during his spell at Valencia

The Argentine midfielder was involved in an internet sex scandal during his spell at Valencia

The Argentine midfielder was involved in an internet sex scandal during his spell at Valencia

There was an internet sex scandal at Valencia in 2008, the wild hotel-room party after Argentina had won the Under 20 World Cup in 2009 and the reports — denied by coach Ernesto Valverde — that he arrived drunk for training before a match against Barcelona in 2012.

It begs the question: why do clubs bother?

They bother because with the ball at his feet Banega is far more Mozart than Motorhead.

Both Pep Guardiola (L) and Jose Mourinho (R) have both spoken highly of Banega in the past

Both Pep Guardiola (L) and Jose Mourinho (R) have both spoken highly of Banega in the past

Both Pep Guardiola (L) and Jose Mourinho (R) have both spoken highly of Banega in the past

In that game against Barcelona, Banega was man of the match, justifying Guardiola’s remarks that ‘Banega is fantastic. We’ll have to be plugged in to render him ineffective’.

And after Banega-inspired Sevilla knocked United out of the Champions League in 2018, then United boss Mourinho said: ‘There are many Sevilla players who would play in my team.’

No prizes for guessing Banega was one of them.

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Wilfried Zaha was sidelined from Man Utd action after rumours of affair with David Moyes’ daughter, says Patrice Evra

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wilfried zaha was sidelined from man utd action after rumours of affair with david moyes daughter says patrice evra

WILFRIED ZAHA “disappeared” from Manchester United action after rumours of an affair with boss David Moyes’ daughter, his former team-mate Patrice Evra claimed.

Crystal Palace ace Zaha moved to Old Trafford in 2013 but was mysteriously sidelined following an impressive pre-season as he struggled to break into the first team.

Crystal Palace star Wilfried Zaha made the move to Old Trafford in 2013

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Crystal Palace star Wilfried Zaha made the move to Old Trafford in 2013
Patrice Evra stunned TV viewers when he brought up the alleged romance

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Patrice Evra stunned TV viewers when he brought up the alleged romance

Former left-back Evra, 39, was in the United squad with Zaha and felt he never recovered following rumours of a fling with then manager Moyes‘ daughter Lauren.

He made the claim while speaking on Sky Sports ahead of Zaha taking to the pitch for the Premier League clash between Crystal Palace and Man Utd.

Evra said: “All the Crystal Palace fans, they know Wilfred deserves better than Crystal Palace with all due respect. Such an electric player. 

“I remember I think, what’s real in his Manchester United career is when he had this true or untrue affair with David Moyes’ daughter. 

“Because I remember at the pre-season he was playing every day – and when that news comes out… out of the game and he disappeared. 

“But what a player.”  

After he made the comments, presenter Kelly Cates said: “We don’t know the background to that story so probably best leave that one for now.”

Zaha, 27, has always dismissed the claims as “silly gossip” and said he has never even met Moyes’ daughter.

Sky later issued a statement on Evra’s comments, it read: “We have to clarify a comment made earlier in the programme suggesting there may have been a relationship between Wilfried Zaha and David Moyes’ daughter.

“We understand that Wilfried Zaha has never met David Moyes’ daughter and that the claim made by Patrice was false. We apologise for any offence caused.”

David Moyes' daughter Lauren

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David Moyes’ daughter LaurenCredit: PA:Empics Sport
David Moyes succeeded Alex Ferguson as the Manchester United manager in for 2013/14

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David Moyes succeeded Alex Ferguson as the Manchester United manager in for 2013/14Credit: PA:Empics Sport

Zaha went from Palace to Man Utd for an estimated fee of around £10million for the 2013/14 season on a five and half year contract- the club’s last transfer overseen by Sir Alex Ferguson.

But after impressing over the summer, the 21-year-old played just 28 minutes in the Premier League for United and was sent out on loan to Cardiff in January.

He returned to Selhurst Park just one year after leaving, and has since remained at the club.

Speculation as to why he fell out of favour became focused on claims of a relationship between him and Lauren, who has 19 at the time.

Moyes himself was sacked from the job after just ten months despite being handpicked for the role by Ferguson.

The Red Devils endured a bruising campaign under his tenure that saw them finish seventh in the Premier League and fail to get into Europe.

Zaha has lamented his period at the club, and previously said he “didn’t really understand” why he fell from grace.

David Moyes congratulates Zaha as he leaves the pitch after a clash with Norwich

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David Moyes congratulates Zaha as he leaves the pitch after a clash with NorwichCredit: Mark Robinson – The Sun

As recently as this June, the Ivory Coast international hit out at Man Utd for failing to offer him any guidance amid the speculation.

In an interview for The Locker Room, he told former team-mate Rio Ferdinand: “No one at the club at all told me anything, I didn’t know what to do whatsoever.

“I remember tweeting something about it saying ‘silly rumours’ because it was getting too much, so I had to say something myself and then I remember the club media messaging me saying ‘you shouldn’t have done that, you shouldn’t have done this’ and I’m thinking ‘you haven’t helped me.’

“I’m here by myself, struggling because people are telling me I’ve slept with the manager’s daughter and that’s why you’re not playing me.

“The funny thing is, it’s carried on for so long I felt like, is the manager not going to come and have a word with me over this?

“That’s how I felt and I’m thinking this is ridiculous man. Up to this day I still get people that think that’s true and I’ve never even met his daughter.”

David Moyes poses with Wilfried Zaha

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David Moyes poses with Wilfried ZahaCredit: Getty – Minimum Fee

Speaking in 2015 not long after he rejoined Palace following the tough stint at Old Trafford, Zaha said he had never even met Lauren.

He said: “The thing that really frustrated me about the whole United thing was the fact that people didn’t know what actually went on at the training ground.

“There were just a load of rumours that used to just come out somehow and people would believe them.

“It was either I slept with David Moyes’s daughter or I have got a bad attitude.

“Those are the two rumours that stuck with me until I left. I have had no say since then.”

“As soon as anybody sees me now, people think, ‘Wilfried Zaha, bad attitude’ I don’t understand why.

“It’s like playing any other team in the league now for me, I don’t feel anything about them any more.”

He claimed Moyes told him the reason he was didn’t make the first team was he “wasn’t ready for the Premier league”.

Wilfried Zaha finally opens up on rumours he slept with David Moyes’s daughter at Man United – saying club criticised him

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Southampton vs Tottenham LIVE: Stream free, TV channel, score and teams – Ings opens scoring for Saints

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southampton vs tottenham live stream free tv channel score and teams ings opens scoring for saints
BLOG SOUTHAMTON VS SPURS LIVE 2

IT’S the Gareth Bale derby as Tottenham take on the club that gave their returning hero his start in English football.

However new signing Bale will have a watching brief today as he has not been registered in time for this game and reports in Spain say he could be out for up to a month through injury.

  • Southampton vs Tottenham kicks off at 12pm today.
  • Southampton vs Tottenham will be shown on BT Sport 1.
  • To stream the game live, head to the BT Sport website of app.
  • If you’re an EE customer, you can get a FREE three-month trial of the BT Sport app by texting SPORT to 150.
  • Southampton XI: McCarthy, Walker-Peters, Stephens, Bednarek, Bertrand, Romeu, Ward-Prowse, Armstrong, Djenepo, Ings, Adams
  • Tottenham XI: Lloris, Doherty, Dier, Sanchez, Davies, Hojbjerg, Winks, Ndombele, Lucas, Son, Kane.

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Fernandinho named as new Manchester City captain by manager Pep Guardiola  

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fernandinho named as new manchester city captain by manager pep guardiola

Fernandinho has been confirmed as Manchester City‘s new club captain by manager Pep Guardiola

The Brazilian takes over from David Silva, who left the club this summer after 10 years at the club and who himself took over Vincent Kompany the season before.

The City boss revealed the decision to hand the 35-year-old was made collectively by himself, players and the backroom staff.

Ferandinho has been confirmed as the new Manchester City club captain by Pep Guardiola

Ferandinho has been confirmed as the new Manchester City club captain by Pep Guardiola

The City boss revealed the decision was made collectively by players and the backroom staff

The City boss revealed the decision was made collectively by players and the backroom staff

The midfielder was often the on-pitch captain last season as Silva saw less playing time and Guardiola has no doubt of his ability to step into the role full-time.

‘He will be good, as he always has done since I met him,’ said the Man City manager. 

‘Sometimes I have captains, it doesn’t matter with the armband, being the first captain, he is always a guy who leads in the bad moments.’ 

‘We decided in the locker room – the players, the backroom staff – we decided that Fernandinho is captain and I am more than delighted with that.’ 

Fernandinho, who joined the club from Shakhtar Donetsk in 2013, was one of three ‘assistant’ captains last season along with Kevin De Bruyne and Sergio Aguero. 

The Brazilian takes over the armband from David Silva who left the club in the summer

The Brazilian takes over the armband from David Silva who left the club in the summer

The usually deep-lying midfielder played much of last season as a defender after City’s trouble with injuries.

It remains to be seen whether he will revert to his usual midfield position this season as Guardiola continues his search for a new central defender.

The north-west club open their 2020-21 campaign against Wolves on Monday night.

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