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After 19 years, Spain’s all-time top scorer, David Villa, announces retirement from football

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Spain’s all-time top scorer David Villa announced on Wednesday he is retiring from football at the end of the Japanese top-flight season.

Villa, who has been playing in Japan with Vissel Kobe since the beginning of this year, made the announcement with a statement on his official Twitter account as well as calling a news conference.

“After 19 years as a professional, I have decided to retire from playing football at the end of this season. Thank you to all the teams, coaches and teammates that have allowed me to enjoy this dream career,” he wrote.

“It is my objective to put the cherry on top by winning the Emperor’s Cup with Vissel Kobe. From then on, I will continue to enjoy football through all the projects that we’re currently developing with DV7 group. Thank you for all the love.”

Villa, 37, began his career with Sporting Gijon, later moving to Real Zaragoza, Valencia, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid before leaving Spain in 2014 for MLS-side New York City. He also had a brief loan spell at Melbourne City.

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He won two La Liga titles with Barca and one with Atletico among other trophies, also lifting the 2011 Champions League title with the Catalans, scoring in the 3-1 win over Manchester United.

Villa also won the 2008 European Championships with Spain and the 2010 World Cup.

He retired from international football in 2014 and remains his country’s record scorer with 59 goals in 97 games.

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Leicester boss aims for top four

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Brendan Rogers

After another loss in this horrid run of form for Leicester City, Brendan Rodgers was asked if he thinks the Foxes will qualify for the Champions League.

After the Toffees defeat, Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers was asked if the East Midlanders will qualify for the Champions League. And it was encouraging to hear the manager take a combative approach:

“I’ve always said we’ll push to finish as high as we possibly can. If we finish outside it, then we haven’t been good enough. It’s as simple as that. You have to sustain it over 38 games. We’ve go six games to go and we have to fight to finish as high as we can.”

 

MORE READING!  Leicester boss aims for top four
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Dyche’s achievements at Burnley exemplary for promoted clubs, says Wilder

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London, July 3, 2020 (Reuters/NAN)  Sean Dyche’s achievements at Burnley are an inspiration for promoted clubs like Sheffield United who aim to similarly cement their place in the Premier League, manager Chris Wilder said on Friday. 

Dyche has twice led Burnley to Premier League promotion and guided them to the Europa League qualification in 2018, marking the club’s return to European football for the first time in 51 years.

Wilder said United, who has emerged as a surprise package on their top-flight return this season, have been using Burnley as the blueprint for what they could achieve at Bramall Lane.

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“Burnley are the most talked about a football club in our football club.

“They have built the club, consistency, honest performances, (and) a brilliant manager.

“(Sean Dyche) gives the maximum for his team, takes defeats on the chin, and comes flying back.

“And a great example for my football club and my players on how to do it,” Wilder told reporters in a virtual news conference ahead of Sunday’s league clash at Turf Moor.

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Dyche’s future at Burnley has come under speculation in recent weeks amid reports of a disagreement with the club’s hierarchy.

“Absolute nonsense, complete nonsense in terms of anyone questioning what that man does for that football club.

“Have Burnley gone as far as they can with Sean Dyche or is it the other way around?

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” I think it’s the other way around and if I was him, I would be looking at it like that,” Wilder said of the reports.

Wilder’s United are seventh in the league after beating Tottenham Hotspur 3-1 on Thursday for their first victory since the restart last month.

The Blades will be without injured duo John Fleck and John Lundstram against tenth-placed Burnley, while center back Jack O’Connell remains a doubt.

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Zidane reacts to news Lionel Messi could leave Barcelona

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Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane has responded to growing transfer rumours that Barcelona legend, Lionel Messi, could leave the club after this season.

Messi has been at Barcelona since he was 12 and has won every laurel in club football while at the club side, but disagreements with head coach Quique Setien and recent disappointment in the champions league has made the striker question his loyalty to the club according to reports.

Rivals, Real Madrid beat Getafe on Thursday night to climb four points ahead of Barcelona with five matches remaining in La Liga. And with the Champions League filled with strong opponents, Barcelona could end the season without any major trophy.

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Asked on his thoughts if he will like Messi to leave or stay amid the rumours, Zidane said;

“I don’t know what will happen but we hope not because he is in this league and we want the best in this league,” Zidane said post-match.

Sergio Ramos was the hero for Madrid against Getafe, scoring the only goal from the penalty spot in the 79th minute at the Alfredo di Stefano Stadium.

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Zidane hailed captain Ramos, who took his La Liga tally to nine goals in 2019-20 following his 450th league appearance for Madrid.

“Our captain is our leader on the field, but also outside,” Zidane said of the Spain skipper, who took his career total to 100 goals.

“He is an unrepeatable player. He is unique and we know what he transmits to everyone else. I’m happy for him for his goal because when it comes to shooting a penalty, he has a lot of confidence.

“It’s almost in the 80th minute and Dani Carvajal’s effort in goal is from the whole team. We know that with patience and tranquility we can score goals. This is what happened.

“The last 20 minutes with freshness we claimed a very important result. We have to congratulate all the players because what we are doing is not easy.”

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