Sissoko: Why I chose Spurs over Evertonby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveTottenham midfielder Moussa Sissoko has revisited his dramatic move from Newcastle United.Ronald Koeman wanted to take the Frenchman to Goodison Park in August 2016 but was pipped to his signature by Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino and chairman Daniel Levy on transfer deadline day.“It was funny,” said Sissoko. “When I signed I was in the office with the chairman and I saw on the TV, ‘Sissoko was on his way to Everton, but then he went back and came to Tottenham’.“It wasn’t true.“Before I signed here, I talked with Koeman, the manager of Everton, on the phone.”He wanted me to join Everton and I said, ‘You have to speak with Newcastle and my agent, and if you find an agreement, why not?’“On that day, we didn’t have anything.“Then on the last day of the transfer window I came here and everything was nearly done with Tottenham.“So in my head, it was clear.“I was happy because I wanted to leave Newcastle and had the opportunity to sign here.” TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
USC Dance-OffUSC’s football team formed a huddle, Steve Sarkisian called out a couple players’ names and the Trojans had a…dance-off. While most college teams will opt to do a circle drill when a huddle like this is formed, USC’s squad decided to go the less intense route and have players attempt to one-up each other with some dance moves. It’s pretty entertaining to watch. Trojan dance-off! Who has your vote?? #FightOn pic.twitter.com/B6ab3jFxXL— USC Trojans (@USC_Athletics) August 21, 2015Who won? We’ll go with No. 89 – junior wide receiver De’Quan Hampton.
GAINESVILLE, FL – SEPTEMBER 16: Head Coach Butch Jones of the Tennessee Volunteers is seen on the sidelines during the second half of their game against the Florida Gators at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on September 16, 2017 in Gainesville, Florida. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)Tennessee lost another heartbreaker early Saturday afternoon, blowing a 13-point lead down the stretch to fall to Florida in Gainesville, 28-27. The Volunteers had a chance to win on the final play of the game, but Aaron Medley’s 55-yard kick wound up wide right. It was another tough loss for head coach Butch Jones, needless to say. But it was even tougher than we all thought – Jones initially thought the kick was good.Butch Jones celebrated the game winning FG. Except it missed. https://t.co/CgYRvCymsK— SEC Bandit (@SEC_Bandit) September 26, 2015It’s been a tough year in Knoxville. We’ll see if the Vols can learn how to close out games in the coming weeks.
Manchester City’s history of achievement is dwarfed by Liverpool’s at the elite level, according to Pep Guardiola – a factor that could loom over Thursday’s crunch Premier League clash at the Etihad Stadium.Victory for Jurgen Klopp’s side would take them 10 points clear of champions City at the summit and in prime position to claim their 19th top-flight title.The most recent of those arrived in 1989-90, with their most recent near-miss coming as runners up in 2013-14. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? City triumphed that season and have won three of the previous seven Premier Leagues under the ownership and vast financial muscle of Sheikh Mansour.The presence of seasoned campaigners with repeated title-winning experience such as Vincent Kompany, David Silva and Sergio Aguero may work in Guardiola’s favour against the Reds, but his time with Barcelona and Bayern Munich means he knows how the cherished status of Europe’s elite clubs can act as an intangible driving factor on such occasions.Preparing our A Game for tomorrow night! CITY! CITY! CITY! #mancity pic.twitter.com/k6nXynw5Wz — Manchester City (@ManCity) January 2, 2019 “I cannot deny the history,” he said. “In terms of [City] competing with the elite in the Premier League, it is the last decade. The history is not 10 years, it’s much more, it’s longer.”Anfield is Anfield, Old Trafford is Old Trafford and the history and the Champions Leagues [won] are, when the players put the shirt on, what they know they have to defend.”It’s a question for them [why Liverpool have a title drought] but when I was a little boy I looked at the Premier League from Catalonia. It was always two or three teams, City were not there.”That is why, when the people from Abu Dhabi took over and all the people working here – [Roberto] Mancini, Manuel [Pellegrini] and now ourselves – we are trying to be in there.”In the last decade our club is incredible, being in the Champions League, but of course that doesn’t win games. If you don’t win it is not because of the history.”But the history is there and I know what it means when you go on the biggest stages and you know what you have behind. How do you take a step forward? I have to defend something special.”Maybe in the next decades the players coming here will feel that. Our target is higher now and that is what I want to try and maintain.”Is @debruynekev ready to rock? Can we close the gap? #PEPTALK with @marathonbet #mancity pic.twitter.com/KEs3Y9QuF9 — Manchester City (@ManCity) January 2, 2019 While City have not maintained the phenomenal levels of their 100-point season last time around, with three December defeats handing the title initiative to Liverpool, Guardiola is satisfied to find them in the race and boasting a healthy points total at midway.”What I didn’t want at the start of the season was to fall down and drop after success. I talked many times with the players,” he explained.”I know what happened after Chelsea won the league and after Leicester won the league. The year after was tough.”I was saying that was what we have to avoid and we avoided it. We have a lot of points, we are fighting for the Premier League. When that happens you cannot have regrets, but there is an opponent who did incredibly.”Liverpool’s form gives them their shot at adding to the history Guardiola so reveres – something he feels could bring a particular type of pressure.”I can feel what the Liverpool players feel after not winning the Premier League for 29 years. To be there to win the Premier League, I understand,” he added.”I said to the players, that is the big difficulty, to handle that. That is why in this season we want to maintain being there and do it as far as possible.” Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.
YouTubeNotre Dame football hosted a nine-year-old cancer patient and made him an honorary quarterback in this heartwarming video.Kellen McCord is a nine-year-old battling stage IV neuroblastoma. He is on his third relapse. This week, Notre Dame football allowed Kellen to live out a dream of playing quarterback for the Fighting Irish.McCord spent time with the team at practice, becoming an honorary member of the “Red Army,” Notre Dame’s quarterback corps. Wearing Malik Zaire’s No. 9, McCord tosses passes with DeShone Kizer, does footwork drills and breaks the group down for a “Red Army” cheer.McCord also tells the QB’s they need to beat a certain team in a couple of weeks. Which one? Watch this incredibly touching video and find out.Whether you’re a Notre Dame fan or not, that should melt your heart. Kudos to the Fighting Irish.On the Kellen’s Krusade Facebook page, there are also some photos of McCord’s trip to South Bend.As McCord begins another round of cancer treatment, our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family. Stay strong buddy.
Jurgen Klopp has dismissed talk of him being plagued by back luck as Liverpool prepare to face Tottenham in his third Champions League final.Since his domestic double at Borussia Dortmund in 2012, Klopp has been the runner-up in two Champions Leagues, the Europa League, the League Cup and two DFB-Pokals, meaning the Liverpool manager’s last six finals have ended in defeat, His counterpart, Mauricio Pochettino, nonetheless hailed Klopp for his success in getting to so many finals and the German himself is not concerned about that record ahead of the showdown with Tottenham in Madrid on Saturday. Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? “If I would be the reason for losing six finals in a row, then everybody needs to worry really,” Klopp said at a press conference on the eve of the all-Premier League showdown.”So if that’s not the case then we always have to have a chance and that’s how we see it actually,”Since 2012, apart from 2017, I was with my team every year in the final. So we came there sometimes with luck in some moments, but most of the time because we had to go there, so I am probably in the moment world-record holder in the last seven years at least in winning semi-finals.”While an impressive accomplishment to make so many finals, Klopp noted that if he were a different person, he might get down on himself as the primary reason his teams have been unable to get over that finals hurdle. “I’m a normal human being, so if I would sit in the room and think it’s all about me, I’m the reason, if I would see myself as a ‘loser’ or whatever, then we all would have a problem, but I don’t see it like this.”He added: “I think there can be moments that are lucky and unlucky and in the few finals I was part of we were never on the lucky side, it’s true, but I cannot change that.”Liverpool will be looking to claim their sixth European Cup/Champions League crown which give them sole possession of the third-most titles in the competition’s history, behind Real Madrid (13) and AC Milan (7).
U.S. women’s national team midfielder Rose Lavelle has declared herself fit ahead of Sunday’s World Cup final against Netherlands. Lavelle was removed in the 65th minute of the USWNT’s 2-1 semifinal win over England on Tuesday, as she went down holding her hamstring.The injury led to fears that Lavelle could miss the final but, on Friday, the midfielder said she would be ready for the showpiece on Sunday in Lyon. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare “I’m good, I’m ready to go,” Lavelle said, before insisting that her substitution against England was more precautionary than anything. “I just didn’t want to be a liability on the field because I do know with muscles anything can happen,” Lavelle said, “so it was a little bit more precautionary.”There was some added concern due to the location of Lavelle’s injury, with the 24-year-old having struggled with hamstring problems in the past. Lavelle missed the better portion of a year between the summer of 2017 and the summer of 2018 with a recurring hamstring injury, only returning to the USWNT ahead of World Cup qualifying last fall. Lavelle admitted that after a yearlong ordeal that saw her suffer multiple setbacks, she does have extra concern over any potential hamstring injury. “It’s something that I’m always paranoid about but I’ll be fine,” Lavelle said. “I can get over it.”The U.S. and Netherlands have both won all six of their games at the World Cup, with the Dutch having defeated Sweden 1-0 in extra time in the semifinal to advance to their first World Cup final in just their second appearance at the tournament. Though the USWNT are strongly favored to repeat as World Cup winners, Lavelle is expecting a difficult game on Sunday against the European champions.“Netherlands is a great team and they are at the top of their game right now,” Lavelle said. “We don’t take them lightly at all. I think it’s going to be tooth-and-nail, a close game.”With a win on Sunday, the U.S. will clinch their fourth World Cup in eight tournaments since the inaugural edition in 1991. Only one other team, Germany, has won more than one World Cup.
LAWRENCE, KS – NOVEMBER 16: A general view of Memorial Stadium, the University of Kansas Football Stadium, during the game betweem the West Virginia Mountaineers and the Kansas Jayhawks at Memorial Stadium on November 16, 2013 in Lawrence, Kansas. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)The first full Saturday of the 2018 college football season will be here before you know it. It’s three months from tomorrow!Saturday, Sept. 1 is going to be a great day. The season’s opening weekend has a ton of great contests, including Alabama-Louisville, West Virginia-Tennessee and Michigan-Notre Dame, among others.The best part of the season approaching is that basically every program is optimistic. No one has lost yet.Not everyone should be optimistic, though. Some programs are bound to have terrible years.One of those programs, unfortunately, is Oregon State.ESPN is predicting Oregon State will be the country’s worst Power 5 team in 2018. It’s not close, either.The Football Power Index is projecting Oregon State will go 2-10 during the 2018 season. The Beavers are not favored to win any Pac-12 game.Oregon State is set to open its 2018 season on Sept. 1 at Ohio State. The FPI gives them a 1.2 percent chance to win that game.You can view the full projections here.
ESPN college football analyst Paul Finebaum is spending his Monday morning trashing one major college football team.The noted ESPN personality is not a believer – at all – in what UCF has done so far this season.The Knights are undefeated, ranked No. 9 in the latest top 25 poll, but Finebaum isn’t impressed. Or, rather, he doesn’t think they should be getting more praise than several Power 5 teams with a loss or two.“The one thing I am probably fascinated by is UCF,” Finebaum said on WJOX this morning. “I want to see if the committee listens to the noise, plays the political correctness game and ranks UCF ahead of a school like Kentucky, who has done something this year, who has gone on the road and beat a good Florida team, who has gone to A&M and played to an overtime game. And if they do that, then this committee begins to lose all credibility, because UCF shouldn’t be in the Top 10. They shouldn’t be anywhere near the Top 10.”Finebaum crushed UCF’s athletic director and its fan base, too.“The only thing UCF has going for them is a grandstanding athletic director who just can’t keep his mouth shut, but also can’t schedule a decent opponent,” Finebaum said. “And (UCF has) a fan base that is delusional.”This isn’t the first time an ESPN analyst has been critical of UCF, either. ESPN’s College GameDay faced some criticism for UCF for what it said about the Knights earlier this season.The first College Football Playoff rankings are set to be released on Tuesday night.