Ronaldo Hints Dip in Form for Inter Star Mauro Icardi Is Due to Real Madrid Interest

​Brazil legend and former Inter star Ronaldo has suggested that Mauro Icardi has been caught in two minds following a ​reported offer from Spanish giants Real Madrid, as the 24-year-old has been a been a shadow of his former self in recent weeks.

The Argentina international has mirrored Inter’s dip in form as one goal in his last five games have been matched by nine games without a win for the Serie A side, plummeting the Nerazurri to fourth place and out of contention for the Scudetto.


The 24-year-old has regularly affirmed his loyalty to Inter but – having been subject to rumours of interest from Madrid and elsewhere in the last year – Icardi could have had his head turned by the prospect of moving abroad. 

Ronaldo told Sky Sports Italia, via ​Football Italia: “I’m convinced that Icardi is happy at Inter, as was I happy at Inter too, even though I suffered from a lot of injuries and the goodbye wasn’t the one I wanted.

“I don’t know much about the transfer market, but I think a lot of clubs want Icardi. Going to Real  is every footballer’s dream, but I don’t know if it is his.”

The uncertainty surrounding Icardi’s form and future will do little to ease the worries coming out of Inter’s camp who are a measly point ahead of fifth-placed Roma in a congested race to a Champions League berth come the end of the season – a competition the Italian side have not been a part of since season 2011/12. 

It is a stark contrast to the situation Inter found themselves at the start of the season as a 16-game unbeaten streak had many dreaming of the title, including Ronaldo.

He added: “It seemed like it was going to be our year. Seriously, you have to be on the inside to evaluate but looking at the league from the outside this really seemed like the right year.


“The fans were having fun for a while – even if they always want results first – and I was really content with the way things were going. Compared to last year Inter have improved and they’ll improve again, so they have to do everything to return to the Champions League.

“They’ve been missing from it for too long and it’s a necessary step to relaunch, in Italy and especially in Europe.

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“You can’t question everything, every time, every year: the players, the Coach. You have to believe in a project, you have to give it time to work.”

Inter’s next opportunity to end their winless streak comes against Bologna on Sunday, three points which could prove all the difference as Roma host the league’s cellar dwellers on the same evening. 

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‘Not Interested’: Robert Lewandowski Growing Tired of Rumours Linking Him to Real Madrid

Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski has endured lots of speculation over his future in recent times, as well as rumours linking him with a move to Real Madrid. And he seems to be growing tired of it all.

Recent reports claim that the forward has asked that his agents open talks with interested clubs, including Real of course, as he is frustrated with life at Bayern’s Allianz Arena.

However, the Poland international has now rubbished those reports and insists that he has no idea where they stem from.

SC Paderborn v Bayern Muenchen - DFB Cup

“I know this situation very well, I hear this speculation every year,” Lewandowski told reporters, via German outlet Bild this week.

“These rumours do not interest me and I will not say anything more.”

“I have no idea [where the reports have come from],” he added. “I did not hear that they [agent Cezary Kucharski and Real Madrid] were talking. I think that’s another piece of speculation.”

As much as the rumours may annoy him, Lewandowski will continue to be the subject of transfer speculation, with Los Blancos keen on signing another world-class attacker in the summer.

I don’t have to say anything to every bit of nonsense,” he was quoted as saying back in September when quizzed over rumours of a January switch to the Bernabeu. 

The striker, 29, is contracted to Bayern until 2021 and seems to be keen on honouring his deal with the club. But as long as Madrid keep showing interest, he’ll just have to put up with all of the talk.

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Terrifying Stat Reveals the Extent of Paris Saint-Germain’s Potent Attacking Threat

A legitimately scary statistic has been revealed which details explicitly the ​potency of Paris Saint-Germain’s notoriously deified attack.

Having infamously brought in a veritable wealth of attacking options last summer, with Neymar Jr and Kylian Mbappe acquired to accompany Edinson Cavani up front to form the now obligatory offensive acronym ‘MCN’, it is perhaps no surprise it has duly been raining goals in the French capital.

However, a tweet from OptaJean lays out in no uncertain terms their domination, revealing the runaway Ligue 1 leaders outrageous goalscoring tally so far this campaign.

The Rouge-et-Bleu have now registered an eyewatering 125 goals in all competitions this season, 23 more than Pep Guardiola’s supposedly peerless and free-wheeling Manchester City side.


The Parisiens have scored 75 goals in Ligue 1, incidentally only one more than the 74 City have accrued in the Premier League, but collected an astonishing 25 from their six games in the Champions League, compared to City’s 14 from the same period.

They are still 32 goals behind Monaco’s total of 107 from last season’s title victory, although if they maintain the pace they are currently operating at (3.125 goals per game) they will eclipse the total by 11 scores, and would incidentally match the current Ligue 1 record, posted by Racing CF back in 1959/60.

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Real Madrid Forward Cristiano Ronaldo Insists He Can Stay at the Top ‘for a Few Years’

​Real Madrid and Portugal forward Cristiano Ronaldo believes he is still capable of playing at the highest level ‘for a few years’. 

Los Blancos are struggling this season, with Ronaldo himself no exception. Madrid are currently 4th in La Liga, 19 points off league leaders Barcelona, while Ronaldo has only scored eight goals in 17 La Liga games. 

In a recent interview with ​Italy GQ however, Ronaldo has no thoughts about slowing down, insisting he can remain at the top for at least a few more years.

Valencia v Real Madrid - La Liga

He said: “At the career level, I had two fantastic years in which I won titles with my club and the national team, and I feel I can be at the highest level for a few years.”

Now aged 33, the former Manchester United man’s hunger shows no sign of stopping, as Real Madrid have a Champions League last-16 tie to prepare for against Paris Saint-Germain a week on Wednesday, while Ronaldo will also be captaining his country to another World Cup in Russia this summer. 

(You may also be interested in ​PSG Forward Kylian Mbappe Jumps to Cristiano Ronaldo’s Rescue by Claiming He Is Not on the Decline)

Life however is a little different for Ronaldo now, with a young family to think about, and also acknowledging he must look after his body.

He said: “Being a father is the best thing that has happened to me. And it makes me immensely happy. I enjoy every single moment with my children.

“Now, I don’t do the same things I did 10 years ago. To maintain yourself at this level you must make sacrifices. I can no longer do certain things, surely I cannot do the things I did when I was 20 years old.

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“We must always find a balance. Even the small details make a difference.”


Gary Lineker Names the 3 Players He Thinks Are Better Than Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo

​Gary Lineker has expressed his belief that Lionel Messi, Neymar and Harry Kane are now better players than Cristiano Ronaldo.

The former striker turned pundit played for Barcelona in the 1980s, so it is hardly surprising that he has a preference for Messi.

There has long been a debate as to which of Messi and Ronaldo is the better player, although the latter’s underwhelming form in La Liga this season has led to suggestions that he could be on the decline.

Real Madrid v Barcelona - La Liga

“I like Cristiano a lot, but Messi is from another world,” said Lineker when asked by Mundo Deportivo to give his verdict.

Asked to then choose between Ronaldo and Neymar, he added: “Neymar, but when he played in Barcelona. Neymar is the future, Cristiano has been great.”

And Lineker also claimed that Tottenham striker Kane, who has continued his prolific rate of scoring in the Premier League this season, is set to surpass Ronaldo.

“For the future, Kane!” he said.


(You may also be interested in 7 Things You May Not Have Known About Cristiano Ronaldo on His 33rd Birthday)

Lineker admitted he was surprised at Real Madrid’s poor form this season, with Zinedine Zidane’s side sitting in fourth place in La Liga, 19 points behind leaders Barcelona.

“I’m surprised, I do not know what happened with Real Madrid this season because last season, they won almost everything,” he said.

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“It’s hard to explain, confidence is very important for the players, maybe some players are a bit older, I don’t know if that’s it.”


Struggling Real Madrid Handed Boost as Midfield Ace Dani Ceballos Returns to Training

Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has been given a much needed boost after midfield playmaker Dani Ceballos returned to training on Tuesday.

The 21-year-old has been out of action for a couple of weeks after sustaining an ankle injury while preparing for Real’s Copa Del Rey clash with Leganes.

According to AS, the Spanish U21 international has now returned to training, albeit alone, and completed a light fitness workout, which included ball work. The central midfielder is set to step up his recovery over the remainder of the week, with the intention of Ceballos taking his place in the matchday squad against Real Sociedad on Saturday.

(You may also be interested in PSG Academy Director Believes Neymar Will Not Make Controversial Move to Real Madrid)

News of his return to action will be warmly greeted by Los Blancos bosses, with Zinedine Zidane under ever-increasing pressure after Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Levante.

The €18m signing from Real Betis signed a six-year deal at the Santiago Bernabeu when he arrived in the summer, but has been a peripheral figure so far this season. He has only appeared in six La Liga games, despite notching a brace on his first start back in September during a 2-1 win over Deportivo.

His opportunity in the side may come sooner rather than later though, with Zidane’s men under severe scrutiny after a poor run of results.

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The reigning La Liga and Champions League holders are an astonishing 19 points off the pace set by rivals Barcelona, with an embarrassing defeat to Leganes in the Copa Del Rey also on this season’s list of moments to forget.


Bayern Boss Jupp Heynckes Backs Real Madrid to Bounce Back and Progress in the Champions League

Bayern Munich manager Jupp Heynckes has backed Real Madrid to turn around their recent poor form and beat Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League.

Madrid currently sit in fourth in the La Liga table, 19 points behind arch-rivals Barcelona and are widely being written off by critics ahead of their last-16 fixture against PSG.

Levante v Real Madrid - La Liga

Manager Zinedine Zidane is very much under pressure, with European silverware now their only chance of bringing something back at the end of a disappointing campaign.

But Heynckes, who was Madrid manager during their 1998 Champions League title win in his only season at the Bernabeu, thinks that Real will be able to beat Neymar and co and progress into the quarter finals.

“That Madrid is going through a low in the league at the moment is, in my opinion, quite normal, especially if you have won the Champions League twice and been Spanish champions too,” he told Goal.

Levante v Real Madrid - La Liga

“In addition, Real have given away three very good players in the summer with Alvaro Morata, Pepe and James Rodriguez, perhaps to save salaries.

“They have not bought big and thought that with the young players they can compensate for that. You need a really good mix between young and old, between experienced and hungry players.

“Nevertheless, you must not write off Real in the Champions League. They have much more experience than Paris Saint-Germain. Much more! I believe they will win the tie.

“They have a good team for playing in European competition. When we first won the Champions League again in 1998, we finished fourth in the league. I know from personal experience Madrid should never be underestimated.”

Heynckes has already faced PSG this season, with Bayern facing the French giants in the group stages earlier in the season.

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Bayern haven’t won the top prize in European football since 2013 but are being tipped as this year’s dark horses after Heynckes resurrected their poor start to the campaign under Carlo Ancelotti.


PSG Academy Director Believes Neymar Will Not Make Controversial Move to Real Madrid

​Neymar is not about to make a crazy move to Real Madrid – that’s the opinion of Paris Saint-Germain’s academy director Luis Fernandez.

For a couple of months now the Brazilian’s name has been linked with a move to the Spanish giants, with Cristiano Ronaldo seemingly on the decline at the age of 33, and Gareth Bale not trusted over his injury record.


Neymar, as dazzling as the stats suggest he has been for the French league leaders this season, has made headlines on numerous occasions about his popularity, or lack thereof, in the dressing room because of his inflated ego.

He has also been reported to have fallen out with manager Unai Emery and Edinson Cavani on several occasions, which has only increased speculation that he might not actually stick around in Paris despite the incredible amount of money it took to get him there.

According to Fernandez, Neymar won’t be making such a controversial move though. He told Cadena SER’s ‘El Larguero’ programme, as quoted by ​Marca: “I’ll stick my neck out, because Neymar will not go to Real Madrid.


“If PSG went after Neymar and [Kylian] Mbappe then it was for them to stay here, not for them to leave. Neymar is the star of PSG.

“He makes the difference and when you see him play you don’t detect what people say about him wanting to leave. He’s convinced that he’s happy here and he wants to succeed.”

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Neymar, who turned 26 on Monday, certainly is the star at the Parc des Princes – since his move last summer, he’s scored 27 goals in just 26 games so far and 18 assists.


Former Liverpool Man Claims Club May Receive World Record Transfer Fee for Mohamed Salah

​Former Liverpool defender and now pundit Phil Babb has claimed if Mohamed Salah can continue his current vein of form through to the World Cup, the Red’s may be in line to receive a world-record fee for the winger in the summer.

The Egyptian international is on red-hot form at the moment, scoring his 20th and 21st Premier League goals of the season in Liverpool’s latest 2-2 draw with Tottenham on Sunday. He was named as the Premier League Player of the Month for November, and looks on course to win the Golden Boot as well as being an early contender for the PFA Player of the Year award.

Liverpool v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League

Unfortunately for Liverpool, with good form comes vast amounts of interest in the player, with Spanish giants Real Madrid already being linked with a summer move for the winger, and Babb believes both Real and their fierce rivals Barcelona would be prepared to break the world record for a transfer fee to get their man.

Speaking about Salah’s performance against Tottenham, in particularly his second goal, he said (via ​Daily Star): It’s a fantastic goal, composure to finish as well. He was going past international players, elite footballers there. Going past them like they don’t exist. 

Liverpool FC Legends v Australian Legends

“He is one of the hottest properties in world football without a shadow of a doubt. I think again, you do fantastically well, then you have the big Spanish giants, you awake their interest.”

To add to his scintillating club form, Salah was also the hero for his country when his late penalty secured Egypt’s passage to the 2018 World Cup finals in Russia in the summer. Babb went onto claim if he can repeat his current form during the World Cup, he would expect a world record fee for the winger.

He added: They’re going to keep monitoring him and they’re going to say eventually ‘if he keeps doing it until the end of the season, if he does well in the World Cup’, do they put in a massive world-breaking bid in the summer transfer window?”

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In the meantime, Liverpool have temporarily overtaken Chelsea into third position in the Premier League, with the reigning champions playing Watford on Monday night. Liverpool fans will be hoping to see more of the same from Salah in the games to come as they now face an away trip to Southampton on Sunday before their Champions League round of 16 clash with Porto.


7 Things You May Not Have Known About Cristiano Ronaldo on His 33rd Birthday

1. He Was Once Expelled From School

Now one of the most successful men on the planet, but when he was 14, Ronaldo was expelled from school in Portugal after launching a chair at a teacher. The teacher was apparently making fun of his Madeiran accent, and the wealth of his family. 

I think we know who had the last laugh here. 

2. His Career Could Have Been Over at 15-Years-Old

At 15, Ronaldo was diagnosed with a heart condition which could have ended his football career. He was at Sporting CP when the racing heart condition was discovered, and he underwent laser surgery to rectify the problem. 

Luckily the surgery was successful and he was able to continue playing football.  

3. You Can Study a Cristiano Ronaldo Course at a College in Canada

The University of British Colombia in Canada offers a course in Cristiano Ronaldo studies. The course involves studying everything about Cristiano Ronaldo from his skill and achievements to his fashion style and lifestyle. 

The semester-long course also looks at Ronaldo’s influence and relationship with Portugal and Madeira

4. He Was the First Player to Score in Every Minute of the Game

He was the first player to score in the first, second… all the way through to the 90th minute in a game at some point in his career, which is pretty impressive. 

He achieved the feat in 2014 when he netted a brace against Atletico Madrid in the Copa Del Rey. The first of the goals completed the set, and ironically it was scored in the 7th minute. 

5. He is Named After a Former American President

Ronaldo was actually born Cristiano Dos Santos Aveiro, but he is now known as Ronaldo due to his dad.

He was a big fan of American actor and former president Ronald Regan, so much so that he decided to name his son after him. 

6. He Was the First Premier League Player to Win FIFA World Player of the Year

Ronaldo became the first player from the Premier League to be crowned as the world’s best player by FIFA when he won the award for 2008. 

He beat of competition from Lionel Messi and Fernando Torres to win the award; Ronaldo has since gone on to win the award on 4 other occasions.

7. He Shares His Birthday With Neymar and Carlos Tevez

Ronaldo was born on this very day (February 5th) in 1985, and it seems that it is a popular day for birthdays associated with football. 

Other players to be born on this day include: Neymar, Carlos Tevez, Adnan Januzaj, Jordan Rhodes, as well as ex England manager Sven Goran Eriksson. 

Happy Birthday to them all!