Beating ‘Messi’s Argentina’ boosted France’s World Cup belief – Lloris

Coming from behind to beat Argentina and dump Lionel Messi out of the World Cup gave France the belief to go all the way, according to captain Hugo Lloris.

The eventual champions could well have had their tournament ended in the Round of 16 when they trailed 2-1 to 2014 finalists Argentina.

Despite a lacklustre group stage that nearly saw them eliminated, Messi’s men had gone ahead through two goals either side of half-time, erasing an early deficit after France scored on a penalty earned after Kylian Mbappe was taken down in the area. 

However, a sublime Benjamin Pavard equaliser set the scene for Mbappe’s heroics, as the teenager delivered a brace in France’s eventual 4-3 victory.

It was the only real scare Didier Deschamps’ side would receive in Russia as they went on to overcome Uruguay, Belgium and Croatia to lift the trophy for the second time.

Tottenham goalkeeper Lloris said surviving the emotional rollercoaster of their first knockout assignment galvanised the group.

“We got the best of Argentina… of Messi’s Argentina,” Lloris told Omnisport.

“It made us realise we have the potential to go through. Every game was difficult, but we did really well.

“We could feel a very strong team ready for the challenges ahead. We faced challenges after challenges following that game until the final victory.

“Every game was difficult, but we did really well.”

Paris Saint-Germain sensation Mbappe would strike again in the 4-2 final triumph over Croatia as a second-half gaffe from Lloris proved inconsequential.

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Fabinho: I’ll try to convince Mbappe to join Liverpool

Persuading Kylian Mbappe to leave French champions Paris Saint-Germain and join Liverpool is on the agenda for Reds recruit Fabinho.

Brazilian midfielder Fabinho swapped Ligue 1 outfit Monaco for Liverpool in a deal reportedly worth €50million in the close-season .

Now Fabinho wants former Monaco team-mate and World Cup winner Mbappe – who has committed his future to PSG amid links with Real Madrid – to join him at Anfield.

Mbappe took Russia 2018 by storm, the 19-year-old sensation scoring four goals to claim the best young player of the tournament.

“He [Mbappe] has already said this season he will remain at PSG, but I will try slowly to convince him to come over,” Fabinho said.

Fabinho and Mbappe played together in 2016-17 as Monaco upstaged PSG to win Ligue 1.

Mbappe departed Monaco last season and spent the campaign on loan at PSG, where he won the domestic treble.

With both players now plying their trades away from Monaco, Fabinho revealed he was congratulated by Mbappe following his move to Merseyside.

“Kylian Mbappe sent me a text message congratulating me for coming to Liverpool. Unfortunately I have not had a chance to congratulate him for what he did during this World Cup,” said Fabinho.

“What France did was fantastic. What Mbappe did in two years of professional football is amazing. He is a phenomenon and needs to be congratulated, and as soon as I have the chance I will.”

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What is Eleven Sports? How to live stream La Liga & Serie A in the UK

Following news of Eleven Sports’ acquiring of the rights to show La Liga and Serie A from BT Sport, fans will be wondering how they can follow Barcelona’s retention of their league title and, of course, Cristiano Ronaldo’s debut for Juventus following a sensational €100m transfer from Real Madrid.

Eleven Sports have released details about how audiences can watch both the Italian and Spanish leagues, which Goal have provided below.


What is Eleven Sports?


Eleven Sports is a multinational group of sports television channels, based in the UK.

They are the official holders to the TV rights to Serie A and La Liga matches in the UK and Ireland, securing an exclusive three-year deal after beating out BT Sport.

It is owned by Leeds United chairman Andrewa Radrizzani and intends to launch two new channels. The current deal will start in August, running through to the end of the 2020-21 season.

Their acquisition of the rights ends BT Sport’s six-year association with showing Serie A.

Eleven Sports executive chairman Marc Watson said: “Serie A has a dedicated following in the UK and Ireland and there is now added interest following Juventus’ signing of global superstar Cristiano Ronaldo.”

Group managing director Danny Menken said: “Eleven Sports is delivering on the promise to become the go-to destination for football fans.

“We will cooperate very closely with the leagues to deliver an outstanding all-round service that ensures the fans live every moment from some of the world’s best sports leagues and competitions. 

“We are looking forward to announcing more premium football and non-football rights soon to add to our growing portfolio.”

Eleven Sports will show both La Liga and Serie A through their online streaming platform, following a partnership with global sports media group IMG.

They are also in discussion with other distribution platforms to widen availability of the rights – which emans that they could sub-license some of the games to other TV broadcasters.


How can UK viewers watch La Liga & Serie A?


Cristiano Ronaldo Juventus

Once Eleven Sports have launched their streaming platform in August, fans will be able to watch La Liga and Serie A matches online via their streaming platform, through their iOS mobile and tablet apps (available from the Apple Store) as well as Android mobile (available from the Google Play store).

They also confirmed that they are in discussions with other broadcasters such as Sky and BT to show matches through their platforms.

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Transfer news & rumours LIVE: PSG willing to sell Neymar to Real Madrid


PSG willing to sell Neymar


Paris Saint-Germain no longer consider Neymar untouchable in the face of a possible huge offer from Real Madrid for the Brazil superstar, reports Mundo Deportivo.

Real Madrid president Florentino Perez is thought to value Neymar above all else, and new PSG boss Thomas Tuchel would use the money to reinforce multiple positions in his side.

The only PSG player considered off-limits by the Ligue 1 winners is teenage star Kylian Mbappe.


Willian still wants to quit Chelsea despite Sarri appointment


Chelsea attacker Willian still wants to depart the club this summer, despite the appointment of Maurizio Sarri, reports the Sun.

Willian fell out with previous Blues boss Antonio Conte, so the club’s officials hoped Sarri’s hiring and playing philosophy would tempt the winger to stay.

However, Willian has already had his head turned by talk of a move to Barcelona and Real Madrid, with Brazil team-mate Philippe Coutinho talking to him during the World Cup about joining the La Liga champions.


Pavard to join Bayern Munich


Benjamin Pavard has agreed to join Bayern Munich from Stuttgart in 2019, according to SWR Sport.

The France international has a release clause of €35 million (£31m/$41m) which will become valid in 2019, which is considered will below his market value.

Stuttgart and Bayern are discussing a possible exit this summer with Stuttgart receiving a larger fee for Pavard’s immediate departure.


Reyes draws interest from Premier League clubs


Mexico international Diego Reyes has drawn interest from West Ham and Newcastle, reports Sky Sports.

The defender’s contract with Porto has expired, meaning he can join any side on free transfer, with Turkish club Fenerbache having made an offer for Reyes.


Everton want part-exchange for Zaha


Everton are hoping to do a cash plus player swap to land Crystal Palace attacker Wilfried Zaha, according to the Mirror.

Everton, along with West Ham, have refused Palace’s £60 million asking price but the Toffees are hoping to include former Palace player Yannick Bolasie in a swap.

Borussia Dortmund are also interested in Zaha, who is ready to move on from the club this summer.


Wenger becomes Japan’s No.1 target


Arsene Wenger is the top choice of the Japanese Football Association to take over the national team head coaching job, reports the Daily Mail.

Wenger managed in Japan with the club Nagoya Grampus Eight prior to joining Arsenal and remains a popular figure in the country.

While Wenger prefers club football, his opportunities at that level appear limited to China, which may lead him to taking Japan’s offer.


Donnarumma on Chelsea three-man shortlist


AC Milan’s Gianluigi Donnarumma has been added to a three-man shortlist of goalkeepers Chelsea want to replace Thibaut Courtois, reports the Evening Standard.

Courtois is expected to leave for Real Madrid once the Blues have lined up a replacement, and Donnarumma joins Leicester City’s Kasper Schmeichel and former Blues keeper Petr Cech on that list.

Milan are interested in Chelsea’s Alvaro Morata, and while it’s possible both players will switch teams, it is unlikely it will be done in a straight swap.


Navas willing to battle Courtois


Real Madrid goalkeeper Keylor Navas is willing to stay and fight for his place amid the likely arrival of Thibaut Courtois, reports AS.

While Navas has lost two major allies in former manager Zinedine Zidane and goalkeeping coach Luis Llopis, the Costa Rica international has no plans to ask for a transfer.

Madrid are open to keeping Navas around due to his service to the club, though Kiko Casilla and Luca Zidane would be likely to be moved on.


Everton make £14m Digne offer


Everton are targeting Barcelona full-back Lucas Digne and made £14 million ($18m) offer, reports Mundo Deportivo.

Digne is among the players Barcelona are considering moving on this summer, along with Andre Gomes, Rafinha, Marlon and Aleix Vidal.


West Ham make £20m Vida offer


West Ham have jumped ahead of Premier League rivals Everton in the hunt to sign Croatia defender Domagoj Vida, according to Milliyet.com.

The Hammers have made an offer to Besiktas of £20 million ($26m) for Vida, and are willing to pay much of that money up front.

The defender has a contract until 2022, with the club hierarchy meeting to decide whether or not to cash in on Vida.

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‘What are you waiting for?’ – Alisson reveals Salah texts that convinced him to join Liverpool

New Liverpool signing Alisson has revealed former Roma team-mate Mohamed Salah sent him text messages encouraging him to complete a move to Anfield.

Alisson’s arrival on Merseyside was confirmed on Thursday for a world-record fee for a goalkeeper that could rise to £65 million (€73m/$85m).

The 25-year-old shared a dressing room with Salah at the Stadio Olimpico during the 2016-17 campaign before the Egypt international departed for Liverpool, where he was a revelation last season.

And Alisson says Salah made contact when speculation grew over a potential move.

“We didn’t have that much contact after he left Roma,” Alisson told Liverpool’s official website. “We met again in the game when we were up against each other [in the Champions League in April]..

“Yesterday, he sent me a message saying: ‘Hey, what are you waiting for?’ As the negotiations were at an advanced stage, I replied to him straight away saying: ‘Calm down, I’m on my way!’

“I’m really happy to have the opportunity to play alongside him again. As well as being a great player, he is a huge character and a great person – which is the most important thing.

“To be with these great people and players day to day is fantastic for me.”

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