The Barca boss has admitted that his side not only rely on the Argentine forward, but that they will need him for many more years.
Barcelona boss Luis Enrique claims it would be “naive” to suggest that his side are not reliant to a certain extent on the form of Lionel Messi.
The Argentina star has scored three goals in his last two La Liga matches to ensure maximum points from difficult games against Leganes and Atletico Madrid.
Messi, who has scored 35 times in as many appearances this season despite dropping deeper into midfield at times, is one of the few Barca players who has maintained form throughout an inconsistent campaign.
Suggestions of ‘Messi dependencia’ have consequently reared their heads once more – especially with the 29-year-old’s future unclear – but Luis Enrique is glad to be able to rely on the player he considers to be the world’s best. Naija and Bet
“It would be naive to think that we do not depend on the best player in the world,” the Barca boss told a news conference. “I hope we can depend on him for many more years. Continue reading Barca need Messi for many Years – Luis Enrique
Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane hopes Jese Rodriguez rediscovers the form that once made him the star of Madrid’s academy, but only after his return to the Santiago Bernabeu with Las Palmas on Wednesday.
Jese left Madrid for French champions Paris Saint-Germain on a five-year deal in August for a reported €25 million.
However, he scored just twice in 14 appearances and quickly fell down the pecking order for PSG’s Spanish coach Unai Emery before joining home town club Las Palmas on loan in January. Naija and Bet
“I like him a lot as a player and a person, and I hope that from Thursday it goes well for him at Las Palmas,” Zidane said on Tuesday.
When the Canary Islanders pushed the boat out to bring the 24-year-old forward back to La Liga at the end of January, qualifying for Europe was the aim. Continue reading Zidane hopes Jese doesn’t haunt Real
Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane believes he is one of the best strikers in the world after his hat-trick in Sunday’s 4-0 win over Stoke City took him past 20 goals in all competitions for a third successive season.
Kane, who scored his second hat-trick in a week and third in nine games in Sunday’s match, is level with Alexis Sanchez and Romelu Lukaku on 17 goals as the top flight’s leading scorer this season as he seeks to retain the golden boot. Naija and Bet
“I feel that if you look at my stats, my goals, then I’m up there. If you guys want to print that (I’m one of the best in the world), I’m more than happy to have that,” Kane said.
Kane missed seven weeks with an ankle injury earlier this term, but the England international believes the time on the sidelines has put him in his best possible shape. Continue reading I’m among the best strikers in the world – Kane
The Dutchman says that the England striker would be “welcome” at Goodison Park amid ongoing speculation regarding a summer transfer.
Everton boss Ronald Koeman has suggested he could attempt to sign Wayne Rooney from Manchester United at the end of the season.
Rooney stated last week that he has rejected approaches from other clubs – reportedly from the lucrative Chinese Super League – in order to stay at Old Trafford.
The club captain’s long-term future remains the subject of speculation, however, with the 31-year-old last starting a Premier League match in December and having watched the EFL Cup final win over Southampton on Sunday as an unused substitute. NaijaBet.com
Rooney has been linked with a return to his boyhood club in the past and Koeman admitted that he would welcome the chance to sign the England skipper. Continue reading Everton coach drop hints about Rooney move
Struggling Deportivo La Coruna unveiled former Real Betis and West Bromwich Albion coach Pepe Mel as their new manager on Tuesday until the end of the season in a bid to steer clear of the La Liga relegation zone after a winless start to 2017.
La Liga winners in 2000 and Champions League semifinalists in 2004, Deportivo are battling against a third relegation in seven years after losing four games in a row which led to Gaizka Garitano being sacked after Saturday’s 4-0 thrashing at the hands of fellow strugglers Leganes.
Deportivo are 17th in the standings, two points above Sporting Gijon who occupy the final spot in the relegation zone, although the Galicians have a game in hand. Mel is the seventh manager they have appointed in six years.Place bet on live Matches on NaijaBet.com
A journeyman striker and crime fiction author, Mel has been a coach since 1998, including two spells with Real Betis as well as a brief stint in the Premier League with West Bromwich Albion in 2014, who he led to safety before being sacked.
Antoinio Conte’s side hold a healthy 10-point lead at the summit of the Premier League and the Belgian is sure that they will win the title.
Eden Hazard has warned Chelsea’s title rivals that they have the experience needed to stay top of the Premier League until the end of the season.
Antonio Conte’s side are 10 points clear of second-place Tottenham thanks to their 3-1 win over Swansea City at the weekend – their 20th victory in 26 league matches.
Manchester City can close the gap to eight points if they win their game in hand, and Conte has already claimed that another 29 points are needed for Chelsea to guarantee a second title in three seasons. NaijaBet.com
But Hazard, whose inspiring form helped them to triumph in 2014-15, does not believe his side will stumble in the closing weeks of the campaign.
“We are professional. We won the league two years ago so we know what to do,” the winger said. Continue reading Hazard confident in Chelsea to win the league
The Catalans are hoping to capitalize on the 24 year-old awareness that he may never achieve his full potential at Real Madrid and get him to leave.
Barcelona are hoping to poach Isco from Real Madrid in 2018 by attempting to convince him not to extend his contract in the Spanish capital.
The midfielder is currently negotiating an extension at the Bernabeu, even if he has yet to fully convince Zinedine Zidane. NaijaBet.com
Barcelona are hoping to capitalise on uncertainty regarding his place as a starter by promising to make him the heir to Andres Iniesta in the heart of their midfield.
Luis Enrique is hoping to persuade the 24-year-old to follow in his footsteps, with the Barca boss leaving Madrid during his playing days to join Barcelona as a free agent in 1996. Continue reading Barca set to persuade Isco to leave Real
Nigerian defender Efe Ambrose has made a return to Scottish champions Celtic following the collapse of his move to English second tier side Blackburn Rovers.
The 28-year-old was holding out for a move to the English Championship in January before the deal fell through due to work permit issues.
Ambrose stated that he is ready to continue “working hard and training hard.” NaijaBet.com
The former Kaduna United man claimed he has held talks with Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers who has assured him that he needs to start playing to get a look-in. Continue reading Ambrose set to returns to Celtic
Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy is hoping to fire regularly after his brace in Monday’s 3-1 victory over Liverpool helped the struggling champions end their five-game losing streak in the Premier League.
Vardy, who scored 24 league goals during Leicester’s title-winning campaign last year, has been far from his prolific best this season, managing nine goals across competitions so far.
The 30-year-old also scored in back-to-back games for the first time since September, having netted in Leicester’s 2-1 Champions League loss at Spanish side Seville last week. Naija and Bet
“I’ve been very frustrated with the amount of goals I’ve got this season but hopefully those two can push me on and hopefully there will be a lot to follow,” Vardy said.
Leicester have been in a turmoil after media reports suggested a players’ revolt led to Claudio Ranieri’s sacking on Thursday, nine months after the manager led the club to the league title.
Continue reading Vardy ready to build on Liverpool display
Fiorentina are a long way off potential a potential European qualification spot and any hopes of making the Champions League next season were squashed on Thursday after they threw away a three-goal aggregate lead against Gladbach in the Europa League. Manager Paulo Sousa might not be at the club at the end of the season
Torino are even further away from the top 6 but they could still catch Fiorentina and a positive result here would help them do that. Morale will be down in the Fiorentina camp and this is the time to capitalise for Torino. NaijaBet.com
Fiorentina – Matias Vecino’s suspension will force Borja Valero to play in midfield, thus leaving room for both Josip Ilicic and Federico Bernardeschi behind the lone striker.
Nikola Kalinic is set to start up front, despite playing the full game against Gladbach on Thursday. Continue reading Match Preview : Fiorentina vs Torino