‘I hope to have dinner with him’ – Ronaldo missing rival Messi

first_imgCristiano Ronaldo has said he hopes to have dinner with Lionel Messi sometime in the future after saluting their “good relationship” despite their longstanding rivalry.Messi and Ronaldo have been seen as the top two players in football for over a decade, with the pair managing to form a monopoly on Ballon d’Or for 10 years, winning five each.The 2018-19 campaign brought to an end the battle between the pair in La Liga, with Ronaldo departing Real Madrid for Juventus following a third straight Champions League triumph. Article continues below Editors’ Picks 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 Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? In addition, their stranglehold over the Ballon d’Or was ended, as Ronaldo’s former team-mate Luka Modric secured the award.But seated next to each other at the UEFA Champions League draw, the pair were seen conversing and appeared to enjoy one another’s company.When asked about it prior to the naming of the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year, Ronaldo was full of praise for his rival, as well as admitting he hopes the pair can get dinner some time in the future.“We shared the stage for 15 years, me and him,” Ronaldo said at the Champions League draw. “I don’t know that it’s ever happened in football, the same two guys, the same stage, all the time. It’s not easy.“We have a good relationship. We’ve not had dinner together yet, but I hope [we will] in the future.“Of course I miss playing in Spain – we’ve had that battle the last 15 years, which is good. It pushed me and I pushed him as well.“It’s good to be part of the history of football. I’m there and of course he’s there as well.”Messi takes on RonaldoRonaldo was asked about rumours of a possible retirement at the end of the season, as well as if he might time his exit from the game to coincide with Messi’s.The Juventus star did note he has two years on his Barcelona counterpart, but promised to remain among football elite for the foreseeable future.“He’s two years younger than me, but I think I look good for my age,” Ronaldo said. “I hope to be here next year and then in two years and three years. So the people that don’t like me, they’re going to see me here.”While neither Messi nor Ronaldo could beat out Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk for the Player of the Year, the Argentine top his Portguese rival for award for top forward.And Messi matched Ronaldo’s praise, saluting his long-running battle with the Juve star.”With Cristiano, it was a beautiful rivalry,” he said.”It’s nice to score goals. The goal is always to try to do things to win, before scoring. But if you can win and score, then [it’s] better.”last_img read more

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Mkhitaryan: I wasn’t happy – maybe English football didn’t suit me

first_imgHenrikh Mkhitaryan admits he wasn’t happy at Arsenal and struggled to adapt to English football, with his loan spell at Roma the chance to rediscover his enjoyment of the game.The Armenia international is set to spend the rest of the 2019-20 campaign on loan in Italy.Arsenal agreed to a season-long agreement towards the end of the summer transfer window, with Unai Emery deeming the 30-year-old playmaker to be surplus to requirements. Article continues below Editors’ Picks 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 Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream The Gunners were able to take that decision after seeing Mkhitaryan struggle to make the expected impact following his arrival from Manchester United in January 2018.Like Alexis Sanchez, who moved in the opposite direction as part of the deal which took him to north London, the former Borussia Dortmund star flopped in new surroundings.Both men are now in Serie A and seeking to rekindle the passion which once made them so highly regarded – with Sanchez taking in a loan spell at Inter.Mkhitaryan is determined to make the most of his opportunity, telling reporters at his official unveiling: “Now I am in Rome and I focus on them.“This is not a step backwards as a great football is played here. I wanted to change scenery and for me it is an opportunity to be seized. “I have to enjoy playing football, no matter the place. “I no longer felt happy. Maybe I was not fitting so well in English football.“The messages after the two national matches made me happy, but now I have to concentrate on Rome. “I will never give up and I will fight to the end. I’m not afraid of pressure, I’m used to it having already played with great teams. “I know that the slightest mistake is criticised while a good performance is exalted. If you agree to play soccer you must be ready to face criticism. “Serie A is a great opportunity, I accepted immediately with enthusiasm. We didn’t even talk about money.”That is probably a good thing as Roma sporting director Gianluca Petrachi claims Mkhitaryan has given up “lots of money” in swapping Emirates Stadium for Stadio Olimpico.He said: “The idea was to invest in important young people.“In situations where we found ourselves at the end of the market, we made investments in young people or operations like those for Micky.“He is a top player with very high costs, the boy has given up on lots of money to come to Rome. Time will tell if we have the chance to keep players like that.”last_img read more

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Beltre cheered in possible Texas finale, 6-1 win vs Mariners

first_imgBeltre cheered in possible Texas finale, 6-1 win vs Mariners MLB’s active hits leader will decide later if he’s coming back Published: September 23, 2018, 4:00pm Follow GO By Associated Press Texas Rangers’ Adrian Beltre walks to the dugout after being relieved of his duties at third base during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Seattle Mariners, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Jim Cowsert) Follow The Columbian on Instagram ARLINGTON, Texas — Adrian Beltre was given a standing ovation when he was removed from what could be his last home game for Texas, just before the Rangers rallied for four runs in the sixth inning to beat the Seattle Mariners 6-1 on Sunday.The 39-year-old, playing his 21st major league season, struck out twice and is hitting .275 with 14 homers and 61 RBIs. The four-time All-Star, the active hits leader with 3,162, went to third base just after the game became official — his 2,758 appearances at third are second only to Brooks Robinson’s 2,870. Rougned Odor ran out of the dugout and hugged Beltre, entering the game as Jurickson Profar moved from second base to third.“I want to get another at-bat but I didn’t want to be rude,” Beltre said.Teammates hugged Beltre as the crowd of 31,269 rose to its feet. He acknowledged the cheers with a tip and wave of his cap, then descended into the dugout to more hugs.center_img Receive latest stories and local news in your email: Seattle lost a day after it was eliminated from the postseason contention, extending the longest playoff drought among the four major U.S. pro sports to 17 years.Guillermo Heredia’s double in the second put the Mariners ahead, but the Rangers took a 4-1 lead in the sixth when Nomar Mazara chased starter Wade LeBlanc (8-5) with a two-run double, Robinson Chirinos hit an RBI single off Nick Vincent and Carlos Tocci had a sacrifice fly against James Pazos. Joey Gallo added his 39th homer, a two-run drive in the eighth against Ryan Cook.Seattle finished its road schedule 44-37, its second-most wins away from home since 2002, behind only 46-35 four years ago.Trainer’s roomMariners RHP Felix Hernandez (strained right hamstring) is slated to return Tuesday to make his first start since Sept. 8. “He has some problems with the leg,” manager Scott Servais said. “It is important just to go into the offseason with peace of mind.”Up nextMariners LHP James Paxton (11-6, 3.83), sidelined by pneumonia since Sept. 7, starts Monday’s series opener at Safeco Field against Oakland and LHP Brett Anderson (4-5, 3.96). Share: Share: “It was goose bumps and some tears along with Adrian, because he teared up pretty good,” interim manager Don Wakamatsu said. “He’s been such a leader for a lot of the young guys here. It’s a pretty emotional moment for everybody.”Beltre is in his eighth season in Texas after time with Seattle, the Los Angeles Dodgers and Boston, and he has not said whether he wants to return for next season. He said he will make his decision after discussions with his wife and three children.“Mentally, I’m ready for whatever decision I’m going to make. I’m ready to accept the fact that maybe this is it. If it’s not, I want to be ready mentally to go through another year.”The Rangers finish their season on the road after going 34-47 at home, the second-most home losses since the team moved to Texas, behind 33-48 in 2014. By signing up you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.last_img read more

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