Sergio Ramos: ‘I never wanted to leave Real Madrid’

first_img1 Sergio Ramos and Real Madrid president Florentino Perez at a press conference to announce the defender’s new five-year contract with the club Sergio Ramos has denied claims he wanted to leave Real Madrid this summer, with the defender insisting it was always his plan to retire at the famous club.The defender was heavily linked with a move to the Premier League with Manchester United this summer, but ended one of the summer’s most high profile transfer sagas by signing a new five-year contract with at the Bernabeu on Monday.Reports from Spain had previously suggested Ramos was keen to leave the La Liga giants having become frustrated by life under an intense spotlight from media and fans.But the Los Blancos captain is adamant there was no truth in the claims and that he never wanted to leave Real Madrid.“I know this renewal has taken a while but my heart and head have always been with Real Madrid so I couldn’t be happier,” he said in a press conference.“I’ve never spoken about my renewal. With a contract that had two years to go, whatever the press want to say I respect but the reality is a bit different.“My idea was to always be here and I always wanted to retire here if the president would allow it, and I’m thankful I have a new challenge to be the captain of this team. The priority is always Real Madrid, keeping our fans happy and winning titles.“I’m being honest I never said I wanted to leave, I was quiet. I never said anything out of respect for my team-mates and the president, I never rang the office to ask for more money. I’m just very happy that I have renewed and I want to stay here for the rest of my career.“At the end of the day I have been here almost my whole life. My first year was in Sevilla and the rest of my life has been here, that is sufficient motive to want to stay. There is nothing like this institution. My own happiness is the priority, in the end that was fundamental.”United were reportedly ready to offer Ramos a pay rise in a bid to lure him to Old Trafford after he was identified as one of Louis van Gaal’s main transfer targets.But, having been a Real Madrid player for a decade, the former Sevilla youngster said money is not his main concern.“Honestly, if it was an economic decision I wouldn’t have stayed,” he said.“It wasn’t a question of money. There were personal and professional things that I needed to organise and that is all sorted.“It is reality that I wasn’t happy in certain ways. I never said I wanted to leave but I spoke to the people I needed to speak to and couldn’t continue how I was. Those personal things were nothing to do with money.“The economic situation, the president and I solved that in five minutes. There were other things to talk about – past, present and future. Now everything is cleared up I’m excited to get everyone together and try and win. Everything is cleared up now, I’m very happy to be here.”Ramos added that he is counting on the continued support of the club’s fans now that his protracted contract talks have come to a satisfactory conclusion.“I think they will always receive me with the same affection they always have,” he said, when asked what sort of reaction he expected from the supporters.“I have never felt anything untoward in this stadium and as long as the fans love me that is one of the important things that helped me to stay.“The fans will always ask a lot of you but the footballers of Real Madrid know we have pressure and responsibility, and I hope I will have the same affection I have always had.”last_img read more

Arsenal star wins Player of the Year award

first_imgArsenal’s Alexis Sanchez has been named Player of the Year by the Football Supporters’ Federation.The 26-year-old forward scored 20 goals in 2015, including a superb long-range effort in the FA Cup final win over Aston Villa.Sanchez topped the fans’ vote ahead of runner-up Jamie Vardy, with Sergio Aguero, David De Gea, Harry Kane and John Stones also on the shortlist.The Chilean said: “I’m delighted to receive the FSF Player of the Year award. Personally, it’s been a great 2015 for me on the pitch with both my club and country.“Arsenal have enjoyed a good start to the season and it was disappointing to pick up an injury. But I’m hoping to be back soon to help my team-mates have another successful year.”Gunners manager Arsene Wenger added: “Alexis has had a great 2015 – winning the FA Cup with us and the Copa America with Chile.“He has made a huge impact on English football since his arrival at the Emirates and I’m very happy that his skill, ability and dedication has been recognised by football fans across the country.”The presentation of the FSF Awards, in association with William Hill, takes place in London on Monday night. Alexis Sanchez scored 80 goals in 166 appearances for Arsenal. He has just 5 in 37 for Man United 1last_img read more

AMBITIOUS PLAN COULD SEE DUNGLOE GET FREE PUBLIC WI-FI ACCESS

first_imgDungloe could be the first town in Donegal to have free wi-fi for the public.A plan is being put together to breath new life into the town by offering free access to the internet for the centre of the town.Deputy Thomas Pringle and county councillor Michael Mac Gioalla Easbuig have written to the county council about the idea. They say the centre of the town is now practically a ghost-town and something is needed to bring back the public.If successful, councillor Mac Giolla Easbuig said there is no reason why it cannot be rolled out to other towns such as Ardara and Glenties.“We need to do something to breath new life into Dungloe and other towns because nobody is coming into town centres.“If they have an excuse to hang around towns and use free wi-fi in shops and restaurants, then the people will come. “It depends on costings but myself and Thomas Pringle think this could be the spark that breaths new life into our towns.“We have contacted the county council and a costings analysis will have to be done.“But it’s hard to put a value on this when it could save many of our towns,” he said.AMBITIOUS PLAN COULD SEE DUNGLOE GET FREE PUBLIC WI-FI ACCESS was last modified: February 28th, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:donegaldungloeinternetwi-filast_img read more

Fiorentina ready to cancel disastrous loan deal for Leicester defender

first_img Yohan Benalouane in action for Leicester Fiorentina sporting director Daniele Prade will speak with Leicester City over the future of Yohan Benalouane.The defender joined the Italian side on loan in January after struggling for action at the King Power.However, since making the move, the 28-year-old has failed to make a single appearance as he struggles for fitness.Fiorentina are growing increasingly frustrated at the situation and Prade has now revealed he will hold talks with Leicester about cancelling the loan.“This is turning into a chronic problem,” Prade was quoted as saying by TMW.“We’ll speak with Leicester City and with the player and we’ll see what decisions must be taken.” 1last_img

Newcastle boss Rafael Benitez sets sights on winning return to Liverpool

first_imgRafael Benitez is targeting victory over former club Liverpool after seeing Newcastle take another small step towards safety.The Magpies edged to within two points of Norwich after a hard-fought 1-1 draw with Champions League semi-finalists Manchester City at St James’ Park, and might even have snatched a priceless win – which would have lifted them out of the Barclays Premier League drop zone – at the death.However, they will head for Anfield on Saturday knowing only a continuation of their improved form – they have taken four points from the last six on offer – will give them any chance of getting out of trouble.Benitez, who led Liverpool to Champions League glory in 2005, said: “We have to try to win every game, it doesn’t matter where.“My connection with Liverpool is obvious, it’s quite good, but hopefully they will do really well in the Europa League and we can get three points in the Premier League.“At the moment, it’s true that we are doing well, so hopefully the game away against a very good team like Liverpool, we can see the same things. But you never know.“What we have is belief. We believe now that we can fight, we can beat anyone and in the next games, we have to show that.”The Magpies, who had not beaten City in the league in 18 attempts dating back to September 2005, came desperately close to doing so on a night when Sergio Aguero’s 100th Premier League goal – which should have been disallowed for offside – gave the visitors a 15th-minute lead.Vurnon Anita’s first strike in more than two years levelled it and substitute Georginio Wijnaldum was denied a stoppage time winner by keeper Joe Hart.Asked if he was pleased, Benitez said: “Yes, pleased – very pleased if Gini had scored the goal. But really pleased because the reaction of the players, the way that we were fighting, the passion, the commitment, the relationship with the fans, everything was so positive today that it was just a pity that we couldn’t score the second goal.“It could be better, but it could be worse because you are playing against a team that is in form, it’s in the semi-finals of the Champions League and at the top of the Premier League.“Before the game, I wanted the three points; after conceding the goal, to see the reaction of the team, one point could be fine; after Gini’s chance, I was a little bit upset, but you have to be pleased in the end.” Rafa Benitez congratulates Newcastle United’s Ivorian midfielder Cheick Tiote after the draw with Manchester City 1last_img read more

West Ham goalkeeper Adrian set to sit out Swansea clash

first_imgWest Ham will be without first choice goalkeeper Adrian for their penultimate game at Upton Park tomorrow.The Spanish goalkeeper injured his calf during the 3-0 win over West Brom last weekend and will be replaced by Republic of Ireland goalkeeper Darren Randolph for the visit of Swansea.However, Adrian could return for the Hammers’ final match at the Boleyn Ground on Tuesday against Manchester United, although Slaven Bilic may decide to continue with Randolph as he prepares for Ireland’s Euro 2016 campaign.“We’ve got one player injured and that’s Adrian,” confirmed Bilic.“He felt his calf in the West Brom game and it’s a minor injury so he’s out tomorrow.”“We’ve got a great deputy in Randolph. He’s one of the biggest reasons we went far in the FA Cup and we are happy to have him.” 1last_img read more

Sevilla favoured to BEAT Liverpool in Europa League final – Coral Daily Download

first_imgCoral’s Dave Stevens joins the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast to round up the latest sporting odds.Liverpool take on Sevilla in Basel on Wednesday night in the Europa League final – a game you can listen to LIVE on talkSPORT.The Spanish side have won the competition for the past two years and are 10/11 favourites to win in 90 minutes, with Jurgen Klopp’s men priced at 7/5.Meanwhile, former Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers is now 1/3 to be the next Celtic manager after a flurry of bets.Coral is the official betting partner of the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfastlast_img

‘I want to be the best player in Scotland!’ – Joey Barton tells talkSPORT

first_imgJoey Barton has described his Rangers move as a ‘phenomenal opportunity’ and challenged himself to become the SPL’s best player.The 33-year-old has penned a two-year deal with Mark Warburton’s side, who will be back in the Scottish Premiership next season after a four-year absence.Barton was Burnley’s Player of the Year as the Clarets secured a return to the Premier League. He was out of contract at Turf Moor in the summer and, despite being offered a new one-year deal, the former Queens Park Rangers and Burnley midfielder opted to move north of the border.He explained on Drivetime: “It was just a phenomenal opportunity, I couldn’t get away from it.“I went up there last week, you feel that cross-town rivalry.“I just thought I had a great opportunity to join a club that’s just going to start another successful period after many, many periods of success and a more difficult one recently. It was one of those opportunities I couldn’t let pass. I went up there and was blown away by the size of the football club and everything that goes with being a player for Rangers.“I have never been to an Old Firm game but anyone you know who’s been there it’s the first thing you ask. You can just sense how big it is. People say a lot of things about Scottish football but Rangers being back in the top flight makes for a more interesting programme.“That’s not being disrespectful to anyone else but you see when they met [Celtic] in the semi-final, it’s one of those games where the football world stops to watch it.“It’s a huge part of the football world so to take that opportunity, to hopefully sample that.  I’ve had a good career but to add that, to have another experience of playing in an intense football atmosphere, the challenge I was looking for at the junction in my career, it just ticked every box and I had to be a part of it and I can’t wait to get started to try get Rangers back where they belong.” Huyton-born Barton turns 34 in December and, with over 400 professional appearances under his belt, he feels he still has a lot to offer.He continued: “I still feel I can more than hold my own, I feel like I’m on an upward curve as a player as last season showed.“I don’t want to go up there as a swansong, a last hurrah. That’s not me.“I’m going up there to play the best football at the peak of my powers, challenge for titles, cups and also after getting a personal accolade this season at Burnley, I want to go to Scotland and be the best player in the country – that’s my aim.“There’s some good players and a lot of players will want to have a say. That is something for me to aim at but it’s something I know my character will thrive on.”With Burnley returning to the top flight, Barton had the chance to continue his stay in Lancashire and Sean Dyche’s side. On his decision to leave England for pastures new, Barton added:“I’ve been in the Premier League before and [turning the chance down to play there next year] was a real tough decision for me.“You’re turning your back on a Premier League that’s going to contain [Pep] Guardiola, [Jurgen] Klopp, [Jose] Mourinho, [Antonio] Conte – a plethora of top managers and the players that will come with that.“It wasn’t an easy decision but I just felt I had a great journey at Burnley. Everything has a beginning, middle and end and sometimes if you stay too long it ends up ruining it. I had a great year and it’s organically the right stage to get off. I’ve got a lot of friends beyond a professional experience and I’m onto the new challenge and what a challenge it is up at Rangers.”Listen to Joey Barton on Drivetime in full, above. 1last_img read more

Man United BLOW! Raphael Varane snubs Mourinho reunion to stay at Real Madrid

first_img1 Raphael Varane has decided to snub interest from Jose Mourinho and Manchester United to stay at Real Madrid next season.The French defender was considering his future at the Bernabeu amid worries he may spend another season deputising for first-choice central defensive pairing Sergio Ramos and Pepe.However, according to Le 10 Sport, Real manager Zinedine Zidane has reassured the 23-year-old he is a significant part of his plans for the upcoming season.Former Real boss Mourinho is a big admirer of Varane having brought him to the Spanish capital from Lens in 2011 during his time at the helm.The Portuguese is determined to buy another centre-back this summer, having already signed Eric Bailly from Villarreal, but will now have to look elsewhere after Varane informed Zidane he will be staying on next season. Raphael Varane was unsure about his Real Madrid future after a season deputising for first-choice defenders Sergio Ramos and Pepe last_img read more

Highest paid players in the world: Where will Neymar rank with new Barca deal?

first_img 9 2. Lionel Messi earns $53.4million a year in salary and bonuses 8. Eden Hazard earns $17m a year in salary and bonuses 9 7. Luis Suarez earns $17.8m a year in salary and bonuses 3. Zlatan Ibrahimovic was earning $30.4m a year in salary and bonuses at PSG and is understood to have signed a £200,000-a-week wage at Man United 5. Wayne Rooney earns $20m a year in salary and bonuses 9 6. Bastian Schweinsteiger earns $19.4m in salary and bonuses 4. Gareth Bale earns $24.9m a year in salary and bonuses Neymar’s new contract at Barcelona has boosted his wages at the Camp Nou.According to American business magazine Forbes, the 24-year-old was earning a reported $14.5m salary but is likely to have increased this significantly and his lawyer, Marcos Motta was forced to withdraw his comment when he claimed the player’s deal was the ‘biggest’ in football.There are no concrete figures yet, but it appears he is definitely closer to team-mate Lionel Messi’s reported $51m salary.So, who is in the current top ten? Here is Forbes’ 2016 ranking using salary and bonuses only… 9 9 9. Sergio Aguero earns $16.8m a year in salary and bonuses – Click the right arrow above to find out who the top earning footballers in the world are – According to Forbes, Neymar was earning a reported $14.5m salary, but is likely to have increased this significantly after recently signing a new contract at Barcelona. His lawyer, Marcos Motta was forced to withdraw his comment when he claimed the player’s deal was the ‘biggest’ in football, but it appears he will definitely be closer to Lionel Messi’s salary. Here, talkSPORT looks at the football rich list, according to American business mag Forbes. 9 9 9 9 1. Cristiano Ronaldo earns $56m a year in salary and bonuseslast_img read more