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Mourinho Called Ozil, Coward

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Fans may be wondering on what sometime happen in the dressing rooms when players and their managers get into the locker room.

German international, Mezut Ozil has giving some indications of occasional bust off when he revealed that maverick coach, Jose Mourinho once called him a “coward” and “cry baby” during a furious half-time bust up while both were in Real Madrid

Ozil spent three seasons playing under Mourinho at the Santiago Bernabeu, during which time he won LaLiga and the Copa del Rey.
However, Ozil’s work ethic and contribution to the cause was questioned by the Portuguese in a half-time spat, during which the now Arsenal midfielder angrily hit back at his coach.

In an extract from Ozil’s book, Die Magie des Spiels, serialized in German newspaper, Bild, Ozil revealed:
“Mourinho screamed at me ‘Do you think two nice passes are enough? You think you are too good to enter a duel. You think you are so good that you can play at 50 per cent.

“Do you know what it looks like when you enter a duel? Let me show you.’ He then tiptoed around the dressing room with his hands close to his body and pursed lips.

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“I lost it and screamed at him to go out there on the pitch and play himself, taking off my jersey and throwing it at his feet. I told him to put it on and go out there.
“Mourinho was just laughing and sniped ‘Are you giving up already? You are such a coward. What do you want to do? Get in the warm shower and wash your hair?

“Do you want to be alone? Or would you rather show your team-mates, the fans and me what you can do? You know what Mesut, why don’t you start crying! You are such a cry baby, get in the shower. We do not need you.’
“I grabbed my towel and walked past him into the showers without saying a word to him.
“I later apologised for my behaviour to captain Sergio Ramos and the rest of the team.”
Ozil added that he came to realise why Mourinho made an example of him in the changing room.
“In the end, I understood why Mourinho was screaming at me like that in front of the other players,” he added.
“He wanted to make it loud and clear that he never wanted me to relax. He wanted me to get out of my comfort zone. He wanted to make me stronger and keep pushing me to ensure I kept developing.
“Looking back, Mourinho was right. I felt that playing nice was enough when I arrived at Madrid. I was too easily satisfied.    Mourinho pushed me on and I thanked him for it. He later apologised for his choice of words as well. He made it clear he just wanted to get the best out of me.”

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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Napkin used by Barcelona to sign Messi sold for nearly $1 million

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A signed and framed napkin on which soccer club Barcelona promised to sign a 13-year-old Lionel Messi is displayed at the Bonhams auction house in London, Britain May 8, 2024. REUTERS/Will Russell/File Photo

The napkin on which Barcelona promised to sign Lionel Messi when he was a 13-year-old has been sold for 762,400 pounds ($969,000, auction house Bonhams said on Friday.

The napkin was signed in December, 2000 by Barca’s former sporting director Carles Rexach and transfer advisor Josep Minguella along with Argentine agent Horacio Gaggioli over lunch at a tennis club.

Messi became one of Barcelona’s greatest players, winning over 30 trophies and leaving the Catalan club as their all-time leading scorer with 672 goals.

He also won a record eight Ballon d’Or awards for the world’s best player and led Argentina to the World Cup crown in 2022. Messi now plays for U.S. club Inter Miami in Major League Soccer.

“Yes, it’s a paper napkin, but it’s the famous napkin that was at the inception of Lionel Messi’s career,” Ian Ehling, the head of fine books and manuscripts at Bonhams New York, said in a statement.

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“It changed the life of Messi, the future of FC Barcelona, and was instrumental in giving some of the most glorious moments of football to billions of fans around the globe.”

-Reuters

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Racially Abused Senegalese Goalkeeper Speaks Out After Abandoned Spanish Match –

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Racially Abused Senegalese Goalkeeper Speaks Out After Abandoned Spanish Match -

Senegalese goalkeeper Cheikh Sarr has heard racial slurs directed at him from the stands before, but when a fan allegedly approached just to racially insult him during a Spanish third-tier league game last Saturday, he decided he’d had enough.

“I grabbed him and asked why he was insulting me. My attitude was not aggressive, I just wanted to ask him why,” the 23-year-old told reporters on Tuesday of the incident in Sestao, a working-class town in northern Spain, which led to the game being abandoned.

“Other times it could be seen as something playful or a joke. However, this was not the case on Saturday, as it was something horrible and I could not stop myself. It was a very sad and ugly thing what they were saying,” he added.

The match between Sarr’s Rayo Majadahonda and Sestao River Club was suspended in the 84th minute after the altercation first led to Sarr being expelled by the referee, who was too far to hear the alleged insults, and then his team mates leaving the pitch in protest.

Racism in sport has been a hot topic in Spain, especially after Real Madrid’s Brazil winger Vinicius Jr, who has suffered from several incidents of racist abuse and is part of a campaign against racism, last year called LaLiga and Spain racist.

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On Saturday, he spoke out in support of those affected on social media again, citing “three despicable cases of racism” on that day alone, including Sarr’s.

Sevilla’s Argentina defender Marcos Acuna and coaching staff were also the target of “racist and xenophobic insults” from fans in a LaLiga game at Getafe, the club said.

Sarr said he was thankful that Vinicius had tagged him on social media showing support.

“If more players said no to racism like he does, they (racists) wouldn’t have the power they have now,” he said.

Reuters

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Sex-convict, Alves Spends First Day Of Provisional Freedom With All-night Party –

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Former Barcelona star, Brazilian Dani Alves, who was provisionally released from prison after over a year in prison celebrated his temporary reprieve with an all-night party.

Although his release from prison was temporary, after he was convicted and faces a 4-and-a-half-year prison sentence, Italian newspaper,  Corriere dello Sport reported that the Brazilian organized a noisy party to celebrate his father’s birthday.

The newspaper indicated that Alves held this party last Tuesday, and continued until five in the morning in the presence of family and friends, to celebrate his father on the one hand, and also to enjoy his freedom on the other hand after spending a long period behind bars.

The camera of the Spanish “Telefónico” network was following the steps of the legend of the oldest Brazilian player to participate in the World Cup, until he arrived at his home, located 25 minutes from downtown Barcelona.

The first thing Alves did after arriving at his home was to order a large amount of “burgers” for dinner, the first meal that the former right-back ate after his release from the “Brian 2” prison in Barcelona.

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According to several Spanish media outlets, Alves distributed his belongings  such as clothes and a small fan to the prisoners who had been by his side for more than 430 days,

Alves, 40, was accused of raping a woman in a nightclub, and was sentenced to 4 and a half years in prison last February, before a decision was issued for his conditional release

 

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