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CF Montreal & CanMNT defender Alistair Johnston responds to Celtic links

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CF Montreal defender Alistair Johnston has admitted he would take the opportunity to move to Europe amid intensifying Celtic links.

It’s understood the Scottish champions have come to an agreement with Montreal over the permanent transfer of the Canada international, with only a few small details left to be agreed upon by all parties.

Johnston – capable of playing as a full-back or a center-back in a back-three – is currently on duty with the CanMNT at the World Cup and put in an excellent performance as Les Rouges were only narrowly beaten by Belgium in their Group F opener – a continuation of his fine form in MLS with Montreal.

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Naturally, reporters have begun quizzing Johnston regarding his future and although the defender was guarded about specific details, he couldn’t help but admit his desire to test himself in Europe.

“There is only so much I can say right now but if an opportunity arises, sure,” said Johnston. “I am really happy at Montreal and we have a great thing going, but at the same time I want to test myself, and I want to see how high I can go. That’s something that for all athletes deep down is in our DNA.

“You want to be competitive and push yourself to play against the best and see how high you can go. We never want to look back at our career and have the, ‘What if?’ question. I’ve nightmares thinking about that.

“I want to push the boundaries of what is physically capable for me. If that means going overseas, and trying to see what kind of level I can play at, then so be it. We will see how the World Cup goes and we will see what happens after that.”

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Johnston featured in the top three among CF Montreal players in a number of key defensive metrics last season, including tackles, interceptions, and blocks, helping Wilfried Nancy’s side finish second in the Eastern Conference.

Watch the story of Charlotte FC’s journey to MLS in 90min’s The Making of Charlotte FC, presented by DoorDash, on 90min channels now. Subscribe to our new US YouTube channel.



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Tete undergoing medical with Leicester

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Tete will have a medical with Leicester on Saturday night ahead of his move from parent club Shakhtar Donetsk, 90min understands.

The Brazilian winger was offered to Premier League sides on loan with the view of a permanent deal back in December before the Foxes held talks with the representatives of the Lyon loanee regarding a move to the King Power Stadium.

Lyon are prepared to lose the 22-year-old as manager Laurent Blanc plans to move his side in a different direction. Despite that, Tete is their second highest top scorer this season after Alexandre Lacazette – who has 11 goals – with six strikes.

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Premier League sides West Ham, Tottenham, Newcastle and Arsenal were all alerted to his availability. David Moyes’ Hammers did explore a deal only to renege on their interest later.

Tete’s arrival will add firepower to Brendan Rodgers’ squad. Harvey Barnes and James Maddison are their top Premier League scorers this season with seven each, with Patson Daka, Jamie Vardy and Kelechi Iheanacho all struggling for form.

On this edition of Talking Transfers, Scott Saunders hosts Toby Cudworth & Graeme Bailey to discuss some of the latest transfer news. On today’s agenda: Dusan Vlahovic, Anthony Gordon, Enzo Fernandes, Amadou Onana, Malo Gusto, Nicolo Zaniolo, Pedro Porro, Weston McKennie, Milan Skriniar, Maximo Perrone & more! If you can’t see this embed, click here to listen to the podcast!

Tete is a naturally right-sided player and has Champions League experience with Shakhtar, scoring three times in the UEFA competition.

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Leicester were quiet during the summer transfer window, bringing in only Alex Smithies and Wout Faes, but have signed Victor Kristiansen this month to add competition at left back.



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‘Nice one, Sonny!’ Tottenham chant lyrics, origin and video

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Son Heung-min had spent two-and-a-half seasons at Tottenham Hotspur, made more than 100 appearances and scored 40 goals before he was finally granted his own song by the Spurs faithful.

The eminently loveable South Korea international has scored almost 100 times since, eliciting countless renditions of a fittingly cheery tune from his adoring public in north London.

Here’s everything you need to know about the fascinating origins of a song that has become a staple of N17.

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Chirped out to a bouncy rhythm, Tottenham fans don’t have to memorise much to keep this jaunty chant in their head. The lyrics go:

Nice one Sonny,
Nice one Son,
Nice one Sonny,
Let’s have another one…

And repeat. And repeat, and repeat…

As a Goodwill Ambassador for the World Food Programme, Son will be pleased that even those on Tottenham’s terraces don’t let anything go to waste. ‘Nice one, Sonny!’ was originally ‘Nice one, Cyril!’, in honour of the Spurs left-back Cyril Knowles from the 1960s and ’70s.

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Pat Jennings joined Spurs in the same year as Knowles and insisted that the former England international would “have been proud” to have his song moulded in Son’s image.

To find the inspiration for Knowles’ chant, you have to turn to an earworm from 1970s advertisement. Before turning his pen to a bestselling memoir, Peter Mayle conjured up the slogan ‘Nice one, Cyril’ for Wonderloaf Bread. In the iconic advert, a baker by the name of Cyril saves the day at a bakery and is cheerily praised.

Spurs fans snagged the tagline which Cockerel Chorus expanded into a single for Tottenham’s run to the 1973 League Cup final. The song, written by Harold Spiro and Helen Clarke, topped out at number 14 in the charts. Cyril Knowles played the full 90 minutes as Spurs beat Norwich City 1-0 in the showpiece event.

When did Tottenham fans first chant ‘Nice one, Sonny!’?

It’s tricky to pin down the exact moment that ‘Nice one, Sonny!’ was first whispered by a Tottenham fan. However, the reinterpretation of the classic appears to have gained a spot in the hymnbook on 11 March 2018, when Son bagged a brace in a 4-1 win away to Bournemouth.

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That victory came at the end of four game sequence in which Son scored seven goals across three competitions for Spurs, forcing himself into the throat of the watching public.

Although, spare a thought for one Tottenham fan that pondered why Son hadn’t been serenaded with a specific chant all the way back in May 2017. Ten months before that hot streak, they wrote on the Spurs Community message board: “Surely he deserves one by now? I always thought the best one would be the old Cyril Knowles one.”

Even some of his teammates know the lyrics.



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Weston McKennie due for Leeds medical

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Weston McKennie is due at Leeds on Sunday for a medical ahead of his transfer from Juventus after the two clubs agreed terms, 90min understands.

Leeds’ confidence of signing the USA international has grown in recent days, with the player and club finalising personal terms. McKennie made it clear Leeds were his first choice despite talks with other Premier League sides and he is due to link up with compatriots Jesse Marsch, Brenden Aaronson and Tyler Adams in West Yorkshire.

McKennie will join Marsch’s side for an initial £1m loan with a £29m option for a permanent transfer. That option will become an obligation if certain conditions are met.

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24-year-old McKennie joined Juve after coming through the ranks at Schalke but has largely struggled for the Italian giants. He made 65 appearances for the club in total, scoring eight goals and winning the Coppa Italia and Supercoppa Italiana.

On this edition of Talking Transfers, Scott Saunders hosts Toby Cudworth & Graeme Bailey to discuss some of the latest transfer news. On today’s agenda: Dusan Vlahovic, Anthony Gordon, Enzo Fernandes, Amadou Onana, Malo Gusto, Nicolo Zaniolo, Pedro Porro, Weston McKennie, Milan Skriniar, Maximo Perrone & more! If you can’t see this embed, click here to listen to the podcast!

Leeds had been keen on Morocco midfielder Azzedine Ounahi, who had also been the subject of interest from Napoli and Leicester, but Marseille have since announced an agreement in principle to sign the Angers star.

Leeds have been active in the January transfer window, also bringing in striker Georginio Rutter and defender Max Wober this month.

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