How the FIFA men’s World XI should have looked with ‘sensational’ Liverpool duo Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson

24 Sep

Everyone has their own opinion when FIFA World XIs are released and the team that was picked at The Best FIFA Football Awards has caused plenty of debate.

It was a night full of surprises which saw the likes of Leeds United handed the fair play award despite being embroiled in the ‘Spygate’ row in January.

Lionel Messi won the FIFA Best men’s player award
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There was plenty of discussion about the World XI and below you can see who made the cut.

FIFPro World XI

Alisson Becker (Goalkeeper)

Matthijs de Ligt (Defence)

Sergio Ramos (Defence)

Virgil van Dijk (Defence)

Marcelo (Defence)

Frenkie de Jong (Midfield)

Luka Modric (Midfield)

Eden Hazard (Midfield)

Kylian Mbappe (Forward)

Cristiano Ronaldo (Forward)

Lionel Messi (Forward)

Danny Mills was particularly shocked at seeing some of the players getting picked, or rather who didn’t get picked.

Mills told talkSPORT: “I wouldn’t have those two in [Ramos and Marcelo]. They’ve been unbelievable players throughout the course of time, but not last season.

“Hazard’s not a midfield player, he’s a forward player. You’ve got to put him in that forward line.

“I would leave Hazard and Modric out [of the midfield] because I think there were better players there last season.

Mills was shocked Alexander-Arnold didn’t get in as well as Liverpool left-back Robertson
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“Sometimes you get two players in fabulous positions.

“There’s no right-back in the team. De Ligt or Ramos are not going to play there. Trent Alexander-Arnold – why’s he not in there?

“Andy Robertson at left-back, where are these players? Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson were sensational last season.”

So talkSPORT.com has decided to pick a different XI containing some players who were unlucky to miss out on a place.

Alternative World XI

How the World XI arguably should have looked
buildlineup.com

Danny Mills stunned ‘Dirty Leeds’ won FIFA Fair Play award and jokes Marcelo Bielsa should be sacked

24 Sep

The irony wasn’t lost on Danny Mills as Leeds United picked up the award for fair play at the Best FIFA Football Awards.

The former Whites defender joked on talkSPORT that manager Marcelo Bielsa should be sacked for tarnishing the club’s ‘dirty Leeds’ reputation.

Leeds were surprise winners of the Fair Play gong at the Best FIFA awards inn Milan on Monday night.

They won the award for Bielsa’s act of sportsmanship against Aston Villa, allowing their promotion rivals a free goal after taking the lead in their clash back in April while Villa’s Jonathan Kodjia lay injured on the field.

Many saw it as a way of apology after the club’s ‘Spygate’ scandal, with Bielsa admitting to watching all of United’s opponents train in the build-up to matches.

Leeds were fined £200,000 and Bielsa paid it out of his own pocket.

Bielsa and Leeds won praise for their conduct against Aston Villa in April
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Nevertheless, Bielsa’s act of fair play was officially recognised by FIFA at Monday’s glitzy do, and Mills could only laugh when asked about it on Tuesday’s Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast.

“I think Bielsa should be sacked!

“You can’t have Leeds winning a fair play award, it’s outrageous!

“What happened to ‘dirty Leeds’? The whole ethos of the club is built on ‘dirty Leeds’ – this shouldn’t be happening!”

Jurgen Klopp over Pep Guardiola? Former Man City star questions Liverpool manager winning men’s coach of the year at The Best FIFA awards

24 Sep

Jurgen Klopp was named the Best FIFA Men’s Coach of the Year because of his personality, not by Liverpool’s achievements on the field.

That’s according to Danny Mills, who has questioned why the German won the award ahead of Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola.

Jurgen Klopp has landed FIFA’s best men’s coach award after leading Liverpool to Champions League glory
AFP

The most likeable man in football collected the top manager’s prize at the FIFA Football Awards in Milan on Monday night and used his speech not to big himself up, but to pay tribute to rivals Guardiola and Mauricio Pochettino, his Liverpool team and his family.

If you didn’t like the bespectacled German before, you probably do now after watching it.

Klopp conceded that he was only up there because of the Reds’ Champions League victory, telling Pochettino – who he embraced on his way on to the stage – that it would have been him holding the gong if Tottenham had won last season’s final in Madrid.

But Mills disagrees, saying the main reason behind Klopp’s win was because it’s practically impossible not to like him – adding that if Jose Mourinho had achieved what the German achieved last season, he probably wouldn’t have won.

Speaking on Tuesday’s Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast, the former Man City defender said: “So are people saying that Klopp is better than Guardiola?

“Liverpool won the Champions League, which is sensational, but it’s a cup. They didn’t win every game going through that competition, did they.

“Manchester City won the Premier League with the way they played and got 98 points.

Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City become the first English club in history to win the domestic treble last season, but he was pipped to the gong
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“It’s difficult to argue, because Liverpool went so close in the Premier League title and won the Champions League. Klopp was outstanding. But he’s also media friendly, isn’t he.

“If that would have been Mourinho coming second and winning the Champions League, would he have got the vote? No chance!

“We don’t always judge people solely on footballing ability, a lot of it comes down to personality.”

Liverpool enjoyed further success at the glitzy do in Italy as Alisson was named Goalkeeper of the Year and both he and Virgil van Dijk were included in the World XI, although the Dutch defender  lost out in the overall Player of the Year vote to Barcelona maestro Lionel Messi.


Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson Danny Mills slams FIFA World XI and insists Liverpool duo deserve places

24 Sep

Danny Mills can’t believe Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson were not selected in FIFA’s World XI.

Not just that, the talkSPORT presenter was stunned to discover there were NO players from his former team, Manchester City.

The 2019 FIFA World XI has not gone down well with fans
@FIFAcom on Twitter

This year’s all-star line-up was announced at the BEST FIFA Football Awards in Milan on Monday, but the selection has been slated by football fans in England.

The 2019 XI features THREE Real Madrid players (not including Eden Hazard, who only joined them in the summer) despite the Spanish giants not winning a major trophy.

Meanwhile, there are no representatives from Man City’s history making treble-winning team, while only Virgil van Dijk and Alisson made the cut from Liverpool’s Champions League-winning side.

Now, fantasy XIs are rarely universally agreed, but Mills believes voters got this one seriously wrong and two Reds stars in particular should have been included after their stunning individual seasons.

Speaking on Tuesday’s Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast, the former City and England defender said: “Ramos and Marcelo? I wouldn’t have those two in. They are unbelievable players throughout the course of time, but not last season.

“Eden Hazard is not a midfield player, he’s a forward. You’ve got to put him in the forward line, and then he doesn’t even get in.

“I would leave Hazard and Luka Modric out of that team. There were better players last season in midfield.

“There’s no right back in the team, either!

Trent Alexander-Arnold has enjoyed a meteoric rise in the Liverpool team over the past two seasons
Getty Images - Getty

“Trent Alexander-Arnold, why is he not in there? Andy Robertson in at left-back, where are these players? They were sensational last season!

“They got goals and assists, why did they not get a vote or two?”

Best FIFA Football Award winners 2019

Men’s player – Lionel Messi (Barcelona and Argentina)

Women’s player – Megan Rapinoe (Reign FC and United States)

Men’s coach – Jurgen Klopp (Liverpool)

Women’s coach – Jill Ellis (United States)

Men’s goalkeeper – Alisson Becker (Liverpool and Brazil)

Women’s goalkeeper – Sari Van Veenendaal (Atletico Madrid and Holland)

Puskas award – Daniel Zsori (Debrecen/Fehervar)

Fan award – Silvia Grecco (Palmeiras)

Fair play award – Marcelo Bielsa and the Leeds squad

FIFPro men’s world XI – Alisson; Matthijs De Ligt, Marcelo, Sergio Ramos, Virgil Van Dijk; Frenkie De Jong, Eden Hazard, Luka Modric; Cristiano Ronaldo, Kylian Mbappe, Lionel Messi

FIFPro women’s world XI – Sari Van Veenendaal; Lucy Bronze, Nilla Fischer, Kelley O’Hara, Wendie Renard; Julie Ertz, Amandine Henry, Rose Lavelle; Marta, Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe

Zlatan Ibrahimovic hilariously trolls Liverpool star Mohamed Salah over Puskas Award win

28 Sep

Zlatan Ibrahimovic does not believe Mohamed Salah should have won the Puskas Award for his goal against Everton.

In fact, the former Manchester United star admitted he did not care who on the award because he was not nominated for the accolade.

Salah won the award, but that was incorrect according to Ibrahimovic

FIFA caused outrage when they declared Salah’s strike against Everton the best goal from 2018.

Fans took to social media to complain about the decision, with teammate James Milner also poking fun at the situation.

But Ibrahimovic, who won the award in 2013, has finally had his say on the situation in his own indomitable style.

The LA Galaxy striker was asked if Salah should won the award and simply replied: “No.

Zlatan celebrates scoring the overhead kick against England which won him the 2013 Puskas Award

“I did not see the candidates, if my goal was not there I am not interested.

“My goal should have been there – the one against LAFC. Maybe I am there next year.”

The 36-year-old has a history of being a scorer of great goals, as well as a great goalscorer.

In just 23 games, the charismatic striker has scored 18 goals in MLS and shows no sign of slowing down.

Actor Idris Elba wore a Gareth Southgate waistcoat with England manager’s picture plastered all over it at FIFA Football Awards

25 Sep

Idris Elba paid tribute to England manager Gareth Southgate at the FIFA Football Awards – by donning a waistcoat plastered with his face.

Waistcoat sales sky rocketed during the summer as fans flocked to the shops to copy Southgate’s look.

He was a popular man and images of him celebrating – fists clenched and punching the air – are a lasting image of the passion every fan had during the summer and the Three Lions boss even created their own song for him.

Elba, who has starred in The Wire and Luther, wore a waistcoat with the image of Southgate’s iconic celebration plastered on it
Southgate joined Elba on stage at the awards
With Southgate in charge, England made it all the way to the World Cup semi-final, but were defeated by Croatia in extra-time

At the awards ceremony in London, Luka Modric won the Best player award and Mohamed Salah picked up the Puskas prize, given to the player whose goal is deemed to be better than anyone else’s. The Liverpool player’s victory left a lot of fans stunned.

Mohamed Salah wins Puskas award and some fans think FIFA were too scared of a possible Liverpool supporter petition

25 Sep

So Mohamed Salah‘s goal against Everton was the best of the year.

That’s what the FIFA Football Awards told us when the Liverpool star collected the Puskas award, given to the player whose goal is deemed to be better than anyone else’s.

Salah’s goal against Everton in December 2017 won the Puskas award

His goal in the Premier League Merseyside derby clash last season was voted for by, according to FIFA, ‘fans from around the world’, with the strike garnering 38 per cent of the vote.
To say the rest of the watching world were shocked is an understatement and even Salah’s team-mate, James Milner, couldn’t resist joining in with the fun. The midfielder congratulated Salah on Twitter, jokingly tweeting: ‘Congrats on your 7th best goal from last season’.

One fan even posted every winner of the Puskas award from 2009 to show the quality of strikes from previous years.

However, other fans, despite knowing the gong is decided by supporter votes, decided to mock the system by referring to the Liverpool fan who created a petition demanding UEFA punish Sergio Ramos for ‘intentionally hurting Mohamed Salah’ during the Champions League final in May.

Salah’s night ended in the first half when he damaged his shoulder as a result of the tussle and the Real Madrid defender became public enemy no.1 at Anfield.

Other supporters, meanwhile. think there could be a petition incoming demanding Salah be placed in the Team of the Year.

FIFPro World 11: David De Gea; Dani Alves, Marcelo, Sergio Ramos, Raphael Varane; Eden Hazard, N’Golo Kante, Luka Modric; Cristiano Ronaldo, Kylian Mbappe, Lionel Messi.

Elswhere, Luka Modric was crowned the year’s best player at the awards night in London. Yes, it’s the same Luka Modric Newcastle’s transfer experts thought wasn’t good enough for the Premier League in 2008.

FIFA Football Awards: Luka Modric wins best player prize, but in 2008 Newcastle didn’t even think he was good enough for the Premier League

24 Sep

Luka Modric saw off competition from Cristiano Ronaldo and Mohamed Salah to win FIFA’s prestigious ‘Best’ award, hammering home his status as one of football’s top midfielders.

The 33-year-old playmaker has been a key man for both club and country over many years and won the gong at the star-studded event in London.

Modric won the 2018 World Cup Golden Ball, a trophy given to the best player in the competition

He was the best player at the World Cup where he captained Croatia to the final and has been the creative hub in Real Madrid’s three consecutive Champions League successes.

However, 10 years ago, Newcastle‘s head of player recruitment Tony Jimenez passed on the chance to buy him for reasons that left manager Kevin Keegan in shock.

In his new book, Keegan describes his return to the dugout at St James’ Park in 2008 and the circus that formed the club boardroom where Jimenez had a lot of influence. This is a man who, according to Keegan, revealed he had never heard of Per Mertesacker, then of Werder Bremen, during a discussion about potential transfer targets.

Keegan’s second stint at Newcastle didn’t even last a year

“At one point I took a call from Luka Modric’s agent to ask if I would be keen on signing the player from Dinamo Zagreb,” he wrote. “Modric had already been speaking to Spurs and his agent was honest enough to explain the move to White Hart Lane was likely to happen. Yet it was clear there might still be a chance to gazump that deal, otherwise the agent would never have bothered getting in touch.

“‘Mr Keegan, I’m a massive fan of yours and I’d very much like to discuss it with you,’ he said. Dinamo Zagreb wanted £16million and the wages were quite high, but it was still within our budget and, at 22, Modric had his best years ahead of him. He was exactly the kind of player I wanted to see in a black and white shirt.

Modric dazzled the Premier League with his displays for Tottenham between 2008 and 2012

“It was an opportunity to sign one of the outstanding young footballers in Europe and, to begin with, I was making decent inroads. I explained what a great club Newcastle was, how the supporters would adore Modric and how we were looking for someone to spark us off.

“Then Jimenez piped up. ‘Can I come in here?’ he said. ‘I don’t think Luka is good enough for the Premier League. He’s too lightweight. He’s decent, but he’s not good enough.’

“The agent looked shocked. ‘What do you mean?’ he asked. ‘Are you saying my player is not strong enough? Luka’s a very strong boy, I can assure you.’ ‘That’s exactly what I mean,’ Jimenez continued.”

The Magpies’ loss was Tottenham‘s gain and fans loved the little genius during the four years they shared together. His displays eventually saw Real Madrid part with £33m to take him to Spain in 2012. There he has won La Liga and been on the winning side in four Champions League finals.

Luka Modric has won the Champions League four times with Real Madrid

Fifa The Best Awards: Start time, TV channel, live stream and nominees for tonight’s London ceremony

23 Sep

FIFA’s Best Awards ceremony will crown the best men’s player of the year.

With no Lionel Messi on the final three-man shortlist for the first time in 12 years, it is expected to be one of the most talked about awards shows in the governing body’s history.

Luka Modric will be looking to add the Fifa Men’s Player of the Year award to his World Cup Golden Ball in the summer

What time is the Fifa Best Awards?

The awards ceremony will take place on Monday, September 24.

It will start at 6.30pm.

The show is being held at the Royal Festival Hall in London.

How can I watch the Fifa Best Awards?

The ceremony is being live streamed by Fifa on their YouTube channel.

The streams will also be on their Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Who are the nominees for the Fifa Best Awards?

Men’s Player

  • Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid/Juventus)
  • Luka Modric (Real Madrid)
  • Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)

Goalkeeper

  • Thibaut Courtois (Chelsea/Real Madrid)
  • Hugo Lloris (Tottenham)
  • Kasper Schmeichel (Leicester City)

Men’s Coach

  • Zlatko Dalic (Croatia)
  • Didier Deschamps (France)
  • Zinedine Zidane (Real Madrid)

Women’s Player

  • Ada Hegerberg (Lyon)
  • Dzsenifer Marozsan (Lyon)
  • Marta (Orlando Pride)

Women’s Coach

  • Reynald Pedros (Lyon)
  • Asako Takakura (Japan)
  • Sarina Wiegman (Holland)

Fair Play Award

This award will be announced during the ceremony with no nominees.

Puskas Award (Best goal)

  • Gareth Bale – Real Madrid vs Liverpool
  • Denis Cheryshev – Russia vs Croatia
  • Lazaros Christodoulopoulos – AEK Athens vs Olympiakos
  • Giorgian De Arrascaeta – Cruzeiro vs America Mineiro
  • Riley McGree – Newcastle Jets vs Melbourne City
  • Lionel Messi – Nigeria vs Argentina
  • Benjamin Pavard – France vs Argentina
  • Ricardo Quaresma – Iran vs Portugal
  • Cristiano Ronaldo – Juventus vs Real Madrid
  • Mohamed Salah – Liverpool vs Everton

Fan Award

  • Sebastian Carrera
  • Japan and Senegal fans at the 2018 World Cup
  • Peru fans at the 2018 World Cup

FIFPro World11

  • Goalkeepers: Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus/Paris Saint-Germain), Thibaut Courtois (Chelsea/Real Madrid), David de Gea (Manchester United), Keylor Navas (Real Madrid), Marc-Andre ter Stegen (Barcelona)
  • Defenders: Jordi Alba (Barcelona), Dani Alves (Paris Saint-Germain), Dani Carvajal (Real Madrid), Giorgio Chiellini (Juventus), Diego Godin (Atletico Madrid), Mats Hummels (Bayern Munich), Joshua Kimmich (Bayern Munich), Dejan Lovren (Liverpool), Marcelo (Real Madrid), Yerry Mina (Barcelona/Everton), Benjamin Pavard (VfB Stuttgart), Gerard Pique (Barcelona), Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid), Thiago Silva (Paris Saint-Germain), Kieran Trippier (Tottenham), Samuel Umtiti (Barcelona), Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool), Raphael Varane (Real Madrid), Sime Vrsaljko (Inter Milan/Atletico Madrid), Kyle Walker (Manchester City)
  • Midfielders: Sergio Busquets (Barcelona), Casemiro (Real Madrid), Philippe Coutinho (Barcelona), Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City), Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Andres Iniesta (Vissel Kobe/Barcelona), Isco (Real Madrid), N’Golo Kante (Chelsea), Nemanja Matic (Manchester United), Luka Modric (Real Madrid), Paul Pogba (Manchester United), Ivan Rakitic (Barcelona), David Silva (Manchester City), Arturo Vidal (Barcelona/Bayern Munich)
  • Forwards: Karim Benzema (Real Madrid), Edinson Cavani (Paris Saint-Germain), Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus/Real Madrid), Paulo Dybala (Juventus), Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid), Harry Kane (Tottenham), Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich), Romelu Lukaku (Manchester United), Mario Mandzukic (Juventus), Sadio Mane (Liverpool), Kylian Mbappe (Paris Saint-Germain), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Neymar (Paris Saint-Germain), Mohamed Salah (Liverpool), Luis Suarez (Barcelona)

The Best FIFA Men’s Player award: Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos wants Luka Modric to win ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo and Mohamed Salah

11 Sep

Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos believes Luka Modric deserves the FIFA ‘Best Men’s Player’ award, despite his team-mate being up against ‘players with more marketing’ for the trophy.

Cristiano Ronaldo has won the prize in its two-year existence, but the defender thinks Modric – the World Cup’s player of the tournament – deserves some acclaim.

Ronaldo has won the FIFA award twice

The Croatian captained his country to the 2018 World Cup final and Ramos suggested that awards have often been handed out to players with the best off-field image and he would like to see it presented to a player who ‘deserves’ it more.

“We will see [who wins The Best],” he said when asked whether Modric should get it ahead of former team-mate Ronaldo and Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah. “There are few players that I am as proud of having in my team as him.

“He is a great friend and a great player. He is one of the few players who [if he wins] would make me as happy as if they had given it to me.

Modric won the 2018 World Cup Golden Ball

“Maybe there are players with more marketing, with a bigger name but Modric deserves that award.”

The Spaniard was asked if his comments were aimed at any particular individual considering Ronaldo is the only man to win the award.

“No,” he replied. “But since there is nothing that defines the prize, everything adds up [to Modric winning the award].”

The presentation for the award will take place on 24 September.