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Champions League: Wenger reveals why Messi, Barcelona are struggling

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Former Arsenal manager, Arsene Wenger, has criticized Barcelona for their over-reliance on Lionel Messi.

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Reacting to a 0-0 draw between the Spanish champions and Slavia Prague on Tuesday, Wenger said they played “like a team in crisis”.

Barca struggled to beat the Czech side, who gave a good account of themselves at the Camp Nou.

“They’re top of the league, they’re top of their group, and they play like a team in crisis.

READ ALSO:  EPL: Arsenal sack eight staff as Unai Emery’s job hangs in balance

“Their game is too slow. There is no dynamic in the last 30 metres, it’s too individual.

“Every time they lose the ball, it looks like they will concede a goal on the counter attack because they cannot deal with pace against the opponent… the team lacks dynamic, lacks energy, lacks confidence.

“Today it looks like they play and they wait for Messi to do something, but the basic strengths of the team play is a bit gone.

READ ALSO:  Champions League: What Ramsey told Cristiano Ronaldo after Juventus’ 2-1 win over Lokomotiv Moscow

“And you think, when will Messi get the ball to do something? And before, the music, the basic music, was the fantastic team play, making it difficult to catch the ball, and then on top of that came Messi,” Wenger said on beIN Sport.

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Spanish Footballer, David Villa Announces Retirement

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Spain’s all-time leading goalscorer David Villa has announced he will retire from playing at the end of the Japanese season when he will be aged 38.

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Villa, who plays for J1 League side Vissel Kobe, will bow out having won the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2008 with Spain, and the Champions League in 2011 with Barcelona.

The 37-year-old is Spain’s top scorer with 59 goals in 98 games, with four of those coming at Euro 2008 where he won the Golden Boot and was named in the team of the tournament.

READ ALSO:  EPL: Arsenal sack eight staff as Unai Emery’s job hangs in balance

The former Valencia man said in a statement on social media: “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 team-mates that have allowed me to enjoy this dream career.

“Thank you to my family, that has always been there to support me through good and hard times. It is my objective to put the cherry on top by winning the Emperor’s Cup with Vissel Kobe on January 1st.

READ ALSO:  EPL: Man Utd receive advice on striker to sign instead of Mandzukic

“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.”

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Wenger under fire as former Arsenal boss prepares to join Bayern Munich

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Former Chelsea and France defender, Marcel Desailly, has said Arsene Wenger is too old to be favourite for the Bayern Munich job.

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Wenger, 70, is set to replace Niko Kovac, who was sacked on Sunday following their 5-1 defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt.

But Desailly believes his compatriot is no longer suited to life in the dugout.

READ ALSO:  EPL: Three first team players to leave Chelsea revealed

“No, he should not be in the dugout. It’s not for him any more,” he said on beIN Sport.

“He has great possibilities to restructure, to build up the philosophy of the club, towards the first team and the academy.

“But as a frontline, we don’t see him anymore. He’s 70 years old.”

READ ALSO:  Champions League: What Ramsey told Cristiano Ronaldo after Juventus’ 2-1 win over Lokomotiv Moscow

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EPL: Three first team players to leave Chelsea revealed

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Chelsea are prepared to sell three first-team players in January as manager Frank Lampard looks to shake up his squad at Stamford Bridge, The Telegraph reports.

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Olivier Giroud, Pedro and Marcos Alonso are up for sell if the Blues receive worthwhile bids for them.

Giroud and Pedro’s contracts both expire in June 2020 and will be allowed to begin negotiations with foreign clubs in January.

Chelsea are willing to offload Giroud in January so they can recoup some money from him, rather than letting him leave on a free transfer in the summer.

READ ALSO:  EPL: Man Utd receive advice on striker to sign instead of Mandzukic

Giroud has fallen down the pecking order since Lampard arrived last summer.

The Frenchman has started just one competitive match this season and wants regular football to give himself a chance of playing for France at Euro 2020.

Pedro has also seen himself become less important within the first-team squad at Stamford Bridge.

Lampard’s preference to play younger players, as well as the summer arrival of Christian Pulisic, has meant the Spaniard is no longer a regular starter.

READ ALSO:  Champions League: What Ramsey told Cristiano Ronaldo after Juventus’ 2-1 win over Lokomotiv Moscow

Alonso has also been in and out of the Chelsea team and it may be time for him to call it quits on his Stamford Bridge career sooner rather than later.

Chelsea are said to be interested in Leicester’s Ben Chilwell next summer and that would leave Alonso seemingly ready to go.

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