IQ - Soccer Wiretap

Landon Donovan: MLS Will Be Up There With NBA And NFL

Feb 15, 2019 5:30 PM

Landon Donovan believes that MLS will rival the NBA and NFL in popularity.

"Finally, Major League Soccer is very close to the others. I believe that, now, baseball, in my country, is for the older generation. Young people don't watch much baseball. American football [NFL] also has issues with security and health. Basketball [NBA] is in a good phase, but MLS is really growing. In five, 10, 15 years, I believe we will be the third, second or first sport in the country. [That it costs] $300m means everything -- because, if companies or people with money are paying a lot, this tells you business is good and that the league is growing," said Donovan.

Donovan recently came out retirement to sign with the San Diego Sockers.


Tags: IQ

Juventus Will Use Aaron Ramsey In Right Position, Says Club Director

Feb 15, 2019 5:27 PM

Juventus sporting director Fabio Paratici stated that Arsenal never played Aaron Ramsey in his correct position.

"Ramsey is a player who, in my opinion, has never found his position, because he has never played as a 'mezzala' in a three, which is his role. He's more technical, he's a final ball man, he has a nose for the goal. He is a different player from what we've got, we don't have someone like him in our squad."

Ramsey's move to Juventus makes him the highest-paid British football player in the world.


Tags: Juventus, Arsenal, IQ

Diego Simeone: Diego Costa, Alvaro Morata Are Compatible

Feb 15, 2019 5:22 PM

Diego Simeone was eager to have Diego Costa and Alvaro Morata in the same lineup.

"There is no question that Morata and Costa are compatible, in a solid, structured team," said Simeone, although there are questions of a tactical fit between Costa, Morata, and Antoine Griezmann in his 442 system.

Simeone said his Atleti side needs Costa's energy.

"Costa is a beast, he's raring to go, he's ambitious and as everyone knows, he's a warrior. We hope he can release what he has inside, we badly need it."


Tags: Atlético Madrid, IQ

Edwin Van Der Sar: Frenkie De Jong Is Like Isco, Eden Hazard

Feb 14, 2019 5:47 PM

Edwin van der Saar compared Frenkie de Jong to Isco and Eden Hazard.

 “He reminds me a bit of Isco at Real Madrid, that low centre of gravity, and Eden Hazard, with the way he dribbles and tries to beat people, as Frenkie does but in midfield," said the Ajax director.

He then stated how pride in de Jong's move to Barcelona.

 “You want to build as strong a team as possible and that’s better if the team stays together but we are in a smaller league, we know there are bigger clubs than Ajax. The fact that a player like Frenkie goes to Barcelona is also due to the support he received from the trainers and the other people here, which makes us proud.”

Football Oranje

Tags: Ajax, Barcelona, IQ

Declan Rice To Play For England

Feb 13, 2019 11:58 AM

Declan Rice has submitted a request to transfer his international allegiance from Ireland to England.

The 20-year-old Rice had played 3 friendlies with Ireland before making the switch.

“I have equal respect and love for both England and Ireland and therefore the national team I choose to represent is not a clear-cut, simple selection. Particularly not for a young lad who never dreamed of being in this position. Like so many people around the world, I consider myself to be of mixed nationality. I am a proud Englishman, having been born and raised in London. However, I am just as proud of my family’s Irish heritage and my affinity and connection with the country. Ultimately it is a personal decision that I have made with my heart and my head, based on what I believe is best for my future. I fully accept that some Irish supporters will be disappointed … My pride at wearing the Irish shirt was always 100% genuine," posted Rice on Twitter.

The Guardian Football

Tags: England, IQ

Inter Strip Mauro Icardi Of Captaincy

Feb 13, 2019 11:55 AM

Mauro Icardi was striped of his captaincy for Inter amid contract negotiations with the club.

Icardi is under contract through 2021 but is attempting to negotiate a new deal.

Keeper Samir Handanovic was named the new captain.

BBC Sport

Tags: Internazionale, IQ

Eden Hazard: Maurzio Sarri Plays 'My Philosophy Of Football'

Feb 13, 2019 10:36 AM

Eden Hazard contends Maurizio Sarri's style of play is "more like my philosophy of football."

Sarri has faced questions during Chelsea's current poor run of play with the club sitting sixth in the Premier League table.

Hazard's future with Chelsea is in severe doubt.

"All the managers I've played for have given me something, from when I started with Claude Puel at Lille to now with Maurizio Sarri," Hazard told Chelsea's website.

"They all see football in different ways, which is why I'm the player I am. They have all given me important advice. Jose Mourinho was special, but the way Sarri and [Rudi] Garcia like to play is more like my philosophy of football."

Liam Twomey/ESPN

Tags: Chelsea, IQ

Josep Maria Bartomeu: 3 La Liga Games Played Outside Of Spain

Feb 12, 2019 1:37 PM

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu said that there must be 3 La Liga games played outside of Spain every season to promote the league.

He added that the games should be split between North American, Asia, and the Middle East.

"If we want La Liga to be strong, we are to play in these games. At Barca we have sometimes been talking to La Liga and have been telling them that if you want to promote La Liga more and more, then we should have three games of the year outside - one in America, one in the Middle East and one in Asia. We have to go and be closer to the fans. We do the summer tours in July and August to go closer to the fans. It's us showing respect to them, going to Miami would have been respect to our fans in the USA."


Tags: Barcelona, IQ

Rafa Benitez Says Miguel Almiron Mentally Ready For Premier League

Feb 11, 2019 9:44 PM

Rafa Benitez stated that Miguel Almiron is mentally ready to handle the Premier League, but will have to adjust to its physicality.

“Mentally he’s ready. He wants to play. In training he’s very dynamic and quick, always involved, but he has to cope with the physicality of the Premier League. I think he can do that," said Benitez.

Benitez added that Almiron gives his side qualities they don't have on their roster.

“We know he needs to adapt but he has the pace, the runs and the ability. We will see if he is strong enough to do the same things he was doing in the MLSon the ball and without the ball. He’s different to the players we have, his game is running between the lines and behind the defenders, scoring goals and making passes.”


Louise Taylor/The Guardian

Tags: Newcastle United, Atlanta United, IQ

Maurizio Sarri: Manchester City Midfield Most Technical In World

Feb 9, 2019 7:40 PM

Maurizio Sarri said that Manchester City have the most technical midfield in the world ahead of their Sunday clash.

In pointing out Fernandinho's contributions, Sarri also stated that midfield would define the match.

“Not only Fernandinho but also Kevin De Bruyne, Bernardo Silva, David Silva. Technically there is nothing better in Europe, so it will be really difficult to be in control of the match, but I think that is the area that will decide the game, more than the strikers. They are still able to play if you manage to stop Fernandinho, we are able to play if you stop Jorginho. We have options in midfield, but maybe they have more options than us.”

Paul Wilson: The Guardian

Tags: Chelsea, Manchester City, IQ

Pep Guardiola On Gonzalo Higuain: Striker Of Exceptional Quality
Guardiola described Higuain as a striker who doesn't need much to score a goal.

Paul Wilson/The Guardian

Eden Hazard On Gonzalo Higuain: We Can Do Something Great Together
Hazard added that Chelsea need to adapt when opponents man-mark Jorginho.


Mauricio Pochettino: Moving To New Stadium This Season Is "Tough"
Tottenham's move to their new stadium that been delayed until mid-March.

Nick Ames/The Guardian

Josep Maria Bartomeu: Messi's Retirement 'A While Away'
Bartomeu will step down as Barcelona president in 2021.

BBC Sport

Tottenham's New Stadium Will Not Be Ready For Arsenal Match
The stadium has encountered numerous delays and is now scheduled for a March opening.

BBC Sport

Pep Guardiola: '3 Or 4 Days Ago, We Were Already Done'
Manchester City are just 3 points behind Liverpool in the table.

Jamie Jackson/The Guardian

Sergio Ramos: Panenka Penalty Is Not To Humiliate Goalkeeper
Ramos added that he waits until the last fraction of a second before he decides how to strike his penalty.


Kevin-Prince Boateng: Seeing Messi On The Field Is 'Magical'
Boateng admitted that he was out of shape and overweight during his spell at Tottenham.


Diego Simeone: Alvaro Morata Is A 'Finisher Striker'
Simeone said Morata works well with Griezmann, Kalinic, and Costa up front.


Jurgen Klopp: Liverpool To Focus Both On League and Europe
Liverpool play their first leg in the Champions League against Bayern Munich on February 19th.

Andy Hunter/The Guardian

Solskjaer: Anthony Martial Needs To Score More Tap-Ins
Solskjaer added that he wants Martial to play more directly in the final third.

BBC Sport

Tim Howard To Retire At End of MLS Season
The 39-year-old Colorado Rapids keeper said that this would be his final season as a professional.

Jeff Carlisle/ESPN

Thiery Henry Sacked From Monaco
Monaco won just 5 matches in 20 under Henry.

David Ornstein/BBC Sport

Real Madrid Is Highest Earning Club Of 2018
Real Madrid increased their revenue through sponsorships, merchandising, and pre-season fixtures.

Sean Ingle/The Guardian

Usain Bolt Retires From Football
Bolt scored two goals on trial with the Central Coast Mariners.

Pádraig Collins/The Guardian

Maurizio Sarri On Eden Hazard: More Individual Than Leader
Sarri added that it's difficult to play Hazard in one position due to his instinctive nature.

Dominic Fifield/The Guardian

PSG Fined 100,000 Euros For Ethnic Profiling
PSG did not use the information for discriminatory purposes,

BBC Sport

Search For Plane Carrying Emiliano Sala Suspended
The plane, carrying Sala, was bound for Cardiff.

BBC Sport

Maurizio Sarri: Chelsea Struggle To Get Up For Big Matches
Chelsea have lost 5 out of their last 16 matches.

Mark Ogden/ESPN

Pep Guardiola: Spying Is A Part Of Club Culture
Guardiola said that he's never spied on an opponent with at Manchester City.

Jonathan Smith/ESPN