Soccer Wiretap

Isco Whistled By Home Supporters, Refuses Captain's Armband

Dec 13, 2018 5:14 PM

Isco was whistled by supporters in the Santiago Bernabeu as Real Madrid lost to CSKA Moscow 3-0, their worst home loss in Champions League history. 

The Spanish midfielder, who has struggled under Santiago Solari, also rejected the captain's armband from Marcelo. 

Marcelo, who started the match as captain, was subbed off and "tried to give the armband to Isco. But he told me that I had to give it to Carvajal. I don't know what the reason for that was."

Tags: Real Madrid, Game Recap

Jorge Sampaoli To Be New Santos Manager

Dec 13, 2018 5:02 PM

Jorge Sampaoli has agreed to take over as manager of Santos.

Sampaoli was rumored for the same position at Atlanta United, but ultimately chose the Brazilian club. The 58-year-old is coming off a disastrous World Cup campaign as the manager of Argentina. 

He's previously coached in Argentina, Peru, Chile, Ecuador, and Spain. Santos represents his first time managing in Brazil. 

RealGM Staff Report

Tags: Santos, IQ

Athletic Bilbao Would Rather Get Relegated Than Change Philosophy

Dec 13, 2018 2:01 PM

Despite struggling in the relegation zone with two wins on the season, former Athletic Bilbao players and executives would rather see the team go down to the second division than change their Basque-only recruitment philosophy.

Athletic have never been relegated in their 120-year history. 

The club recently fired Eduardo Berizzo, replacing him with Gaizka Garitano who was in charge of the B team. 

In regards to the upcoming December election for club president, former Athletic president Jose Julian Lertxundi said "anyone who is a candidate and aspires to change [the Basque-only player mandate]... isn't a candidate. You don't even touch the philosophy".

The Basque region makes up just 4.9% of Spain's population. 

Sid Lowe/ESPN

Tags: Athletic Bilbao, IQ, Signing

New Galaxy GM Dennis Te Kloese Aims To Tap Into Los Angeles Talent

Dec 13, 2018 1:39 PM

New Los Angeles Galaxy general manager Dennis te Kloese wants to build a "clear identity" in how the club develops youth players in Southern California, even if it involves overhauling the current system and shifting the balance between big-name signings and local talent.

Te Kloese said that developing local players from a talent-rich area "is a big challenge because the Galaxy has always and will always be known as a place for high-profile players which make a direct impact and carry the team to big success. But I think there is also a need for a little bit of a more local identity close to those players that the Galaxy has invested highly in, in the last few years.”

Te Kloese has already hired a new manager in Caleb Porter, as well as re-signing Zlatan Ibrahimovic in making his mark on the team. 

The Galaxy have one of the most exciting youth prospects in MLS in 15-year-old midfielder Efrain Alvarez, who won the USL Young Player of the Year after scoring 12 goals in 17 matches. 

Luis Bueno/US Soccer Players

Tags: LA Galaxy, IQ

Top-10 2018-19 Champions League WhoScored Rating (Group Stage)

Dec 13, 2018 11:29 AM

Lionel Messi leads all players in WhoScored Rating after the completion of the group stage of the 2018-19 Champions League.

10. Toni Kroos: 7.75
9. Harry Kane: 7.76
8. Nabil Fekir: 7.78
7. Javi Martinez: 7.80
6. Nikola Vlasic: 7.88
5. David Silva: 7.88
4. Robert Lewandowski: 8.00
3. Neymar: 8.44
2. Edin Dzeko: 8.49
1. Lionel Messi: 8.88

RealGM Staff Report

Tags: UEFA Champions League

Inter Milan Hires Beppe Marotta As General Manager

Dec 13, 2018 9:13 AM

Beppe Marotta has been appointed Inter Milan's new general manager less than two months after leaving a similar position with Juventus.

Marotta is widely credited with being the architect of Juve's recent success.

"From today, I will be part of this great Inter, which is something I am really proud about -- to fulfil such an important role, being the general manager for the sporting aspects," he said.

"It's certainly an important experience and chapter in my professional life, full of great responsibility, although this certainly doesn't frighten me as we are at the start of an important path, and it has to be a winning one."

Ben Gladwell/ESPN

Tags: Internazionale, Misc Rumor

Who's In The Champions League Last 16

Dec 13, 2018 9:06 AM

The last 16 of the 2018-19 Champions League has been set.

Group Winners
Paris Saint-Germain
Manchester City
Real Madrid

Atletico Madrid
Tottenham Hotspur
Manchester United

Europa League round of 32 qualifiers (third-place teams)
Club Brugge, Internazionale, Napoli, Galatasaray, Benfica, Shakhtar Donetsk, Viktoria Plzen, Valencia.

The Guardian

Tags: Ajax, Atlético Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, Juventus, Liverpool, Lyon, Manchester City, Manchester United, Porto, Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid, Roma, FC Schalke 04, Tottenham Hotspur, UEFA Champions League

Arsenal Targeting Center Back During January Transfer Window

Dec 12, 2018 11:26 PM

Unai Emery would like Arsenal to add a center-back during the January transfer window.

Arsenal are facing a shortage of defenders after Rob Holding was ruled out for the season last week with a torn knee ligament, while Laurent Koscielny is only now ready to play his first game of the campaign after recovering from an Achilles injury.

"If we can take one player to help us at center-back, I think it's a good option," Emery said. "But a transfer is not easy."

Manchester United's Eric Bailly and Chelsea's Gary Cahill have been identified as options.

Mattias Karen/ESPN

Tags: Arsenal, Misc Rumor, Transfer Rumor

Eden Hazard Can Hold Ball Like Target Man, Says Roberto Martinez

Dec 12, 2018 7:01 PM

Roberto Martinez praised Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri's use of Eden Hazard as a lone striker against Manchester City, citing the Belgium's ability to work for the team.

Martinez said Hazard "relies on individual quality in what he brings in the game, but he is a team player. As you saw [on Saturday] he was prepared to do something that he's not used to and doesn't do normally. But he's prepared to understand what he needs to do when the ball gets into his feet." 

Hazard did note that he likes getting more touches as a winger than the 39 touches he took in the false nine role against Manchester City.

Martinez also added that the 5-foot-8 Belgium "can hold the ball as well as any No 9, a target man. He's got a really good centre of gravity".

Premier League

Tags: Chelsea, IQ

Gregg Berhalter Embarks On 10-Day European Scouting Trip

Dec 12, 2018 6:31 PM

New USMNT manager Gregg Berhalter is taking an extended trip to France, Germany, and England to meet with key national team players in the region.

Berhalter is expected to meet with the likes of Christian Pulisic and Weston McKinnie in the Bundesliga, along with DeAndre Yedlin and Tim Ream who ply their trade in the Premier League.

Berhalter will make his national team coaching debut on January 27th, 2019 against Panama. 

Roger Gonzalez/CBS

Tags: United States, IQ

Manchester United's Shola Shoretire Makes UEFA Youth League History
The 14-year-old Shoretire has trained with England but is also eligible to represent Nigeria at the international level.

Rob Dawson/ESPN

Raheem Sterling Awarded Premier League Player Of The Month
Sterling scored three goals and had three assists in November.

RealGM Staff Report

Luciano Spalletti Says Inter Lost Their Calm In PSV Draw
The 1-1 result sent Inter to the Europa League knockout round.

Sempre Inter

Jurgen Klopp Says He Would Have Paid Double For Alisson After Save
Alisson made a point blank save in injury time to see Liverpool through to the Champions League knockout round.

Chris Burton/

Eden Hazard: You Know Me, I've Always Loved Real Madrid
Eden Hazard's future with Chelsea remains uncertain without a long-term contract.

Mohamed Salah's Goal Gets Liverpool To Round Of 16
Mohamed Salah scored for Liverpool in the 34th minute and Alisson was excellent in goal to preserve the clean sheet.

Daniel Taylor/The Guardian

Spurs Advance To Round Of 16 With Lucas Moura Equalizer
Inter Milan played to a draw against PSV, which allowed Spurs to advance.

David Hytner/The Guardian

Zlatan Ibrahimovic Agrees To Re-Sign With Galaxy
The move means the Galaxy will have to move one of their three existing DPs.

Jeff Carlisle/ESPN

LA Galaxy Hire Caleb Porter As Manager
Caleb Porter has been without a job over the past year after parting ways with the Portland Timbers.

Kristian Dyer/The Athletic

Jon Champion Named New MLS Play-By-Play Voice
Champion became one of the most recognizable voices in the English Premier League.

Bill Hofheimer/ESPN Media Zone

Franck Ribery To Leave Bayern In Summer
Franck Ribery has made 406 competitive appearances for Bayern, scoring 119 goals, and has featured in 19 games this season.

Stephan Uersfeld/ESPN

Barcelona Security Tracks Down Ousmane Dembele
Barca also have concerns about the company Ousmane Dembele keeps.

Sam Marsden/ESPN

Josef Martinez Becomes Top-Selling Player In Merchandise On Fanatics
Martinez is the first MLS player to top the player merchandise sales list on the site.

Ian Thomas/Sports Business Journal

Zlatan Ibrahamivoc Rejects AC Milan Loan, Remains With LA Galaxy
Ibrahimovic scored 22 goals in 27 matches with the Galaxy this season.

Associated Press

Barcelona Withdraws Plans For La Liga Match In Miami
La Liga still has plans to play one league match outside of Spain.

RealGM Staff Report

City Signs Phil Foden To Extension Through 2024
Phil Foden has become a first-team squad regular this season at the age of 18.

Jamie Jackson/The Guardian

Eden Hazard To Receive More Minutes At Center Forward
Hazard finished with two assists on 39 touches against Manchester City.

David Pasztor/We Ain't Got No History

Atlanta Pays $17M Release Clause To Sign Pity Martinez Of River Plate
Gonzalo "Pity" Martinez has said he will leave River Plate and join Atlanta United after the World Cup.

Adriana Garcia/ESPN

Jurgen Klopp: I Was Never Worried About Mohamed Salah's Form
Mohamed Salah scored a hat-trick in this weekend's win over Bournemouth.

Stuart James/The Guardian

David Luiz's Chelsea Future Uncertain Due To Over-30 Contract Policy
Chelsea doesn't offer multi-year extensions to players in their 30s.

Dominic Fifield/The Guardian