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Paris Saint-Germain predicted lineup vs Maccabi Haifa

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Paris Saint-Germain resume their seemingly never-ending quest for Champions League glory in Israel this week as they travel to Maccabi Haifa on Wednesday.

They got off to the perfect start by beating Italian giants Juventus in Paris in the opening round of games in Group H and they are the heavy favourites to get another three points at the Sammy Ofer Stadium.

Maccabi, who will be hosting their first Champions League game in 13 years, are unlikely to make it easy for them, but Christophe Galtier should have more than enough talent at his disposal to win the match.

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Christophe Galtier

Christophe Galtier has many options to ponder / Jonathan Moscrop/GettyImages

GK: Gianluigi Donnarumma – The Italian saved a penalty against Brest last week, so he will be hoping for an easier time of it in this one.

CB: Danilo Pereira – Pereira is probably more of a midfielder but he has dropped into a three-man defence impressively of late.

CB: Marquinhos – The Brazilian was a substitute last time out against Brest but expect him to step back in for the injured Presnel Kimpembel.

CB: Sergio Ramos – In what promises to be a hostile atmosphere, Ramos is either going to be a colossus or get himself sent off. It will be fascinating to see which one he chooses.

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RM: Nordi Mukiele – The jury is definitely still out on Mukiele, but he should get another chance to impress.

CM: Marco Verratti – There feels like a good chance that one of Veratti and Vitinha will be rested for this one, but Galtier will probably want Verrati’s experience on the pitch.

CM: Fabian Ruiz – The Spaniard has been restricted to just nine minutes of football for PSG since his summer move from Napoli. It’s surely time for him to get an opportunity to stake a claim.

LM: Nuno Mendes – The Portuguese youngster is just really settling in at PSG, but he has impressed so far.

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AM: Lionel Messi – However partisan the Maccabi Haifa crowd may be, I guarantee you they will be more scared of Lionel Messi than he will be of them.

CF: Kylian Mbappe – Mbappe already has two Champions League goals to his name this season. He’ll probably add to that in this one.

CF: Neymar – However frightened the Maccabi Haifa crowd might be of Lionel Messi, I guarantee you Neymar will think they should be more scared of him.



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Barcelona still owe €50m for Miralem Pjanic & Philippe Coutinho transfers

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Barcelona are thought to still owe as much as €144m on various incoming transfers from years – including €50m on Miralem Pjanic and Philippe Coutinho alone, both of whom have actually left Camp Nou in permanent deals.

Barça made Coutinho one of the most expensive players of all time when they agreed a deal with Liverpool in 2018 worth up to €160m. But things quickly soured for the Brazilian and he spent time on loan at Bayern Munich and Aston Villa, before joining the latter for a minimal fee this year.

Pjanic, meanwhile, was part of a slightly bizarre double deal in the summer of 2020 that saw the Catalans also send Arthur Melo to Juventus.

AS has reported that Barça’s latest economic report, which is to be presented to members next months, will explain that the club has outstanding transfer fees to be paid totalling €144m.

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However, they are also owed just under €130m themselves, with plenty of modern deals arranged with staggered payment structures.

Aside from money still owed for Pjanic (€36m) and Coutinho (€14m), Barça have €46m to pay Ajax for Frenkie de Jong and Sergino Dest. There is another €52m that has to go to Manchester City for Ferran Torres. Yet Barça are yet to be paid €10m for Coutinho by Aston Villa and will also receive €6m for Trincao from Wolves in due course.

Barça’s finances are in much better shape than they were at the peak of the club’s money trouble, but Camp Nou vice president of economics Eduard Romeu confirmed earlier this week that this chapter is still not over and more has to be done.

“We have saved Barça, but we still haven’t resolved it,” Romeu explained. “We don’t have it healthy; it involves a lot of austerity, a lot of rigour and there is a lot of work to do. In the 2024/25 season we will be at the level that corresponds to us.”

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Armando Broja discusses his father’s training methods, inspirations & Albanian pride

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Armando Broja has spoken about the tireless hours his family would commit to ensuring he made it as a footballer in his youth, and what it means to be a young star representing Albania on the world stage.

Broja shot to prominence at Southampton last season, on loan from Chelsea. The forward impressed throughout the campaign and returned to west London having scored nine goals in all competitions and racking up 32 Premier League appearances.

Since returning to his parent club, the Albanian international has penned a new long-term contract with Chelsea and been integrated into the first-team, featuring for Thomas Tuchel before his dismissal as head coach.

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But the future remains bright for Broja, despite the managerial change, with Graham Potter now in the hot seat.

Speaking to The Players’ Tribune, Broja credited his mentality and ability to thrive under pressure to his family, namely his father, who pushed him throughout his childhood.

“He’s always been so desperate to succeed and for his kids to succeed. Growing up, there wasn’t a minute to waste. Time was the most precious thing to him,” the striker said.

“I remember when I was young and just starting off in football, he’d come home from work late and he’d be exhausted. It might be like 10 or 11 at night and he might’ve worked a 15-hour day, but he’d always ask, ‘Armando, have you done your training today?’”

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“Obviously lyin’, I’d be like, ‘Mmm, yes?’” he added: “He’d know the truth, though, and out we’d go to the park and he’d make me run laps. Twenty times around the pitch.”

Broja went further, explaining his father’s detailed eye for his traits and progression: “When I had a growth spurt around 16, he got worried I was gonna lose my speed. Pace had always been one of my biggest strengths. So he took me out to do hill sprints for like an hour at a time.

“I was basically falling down the hill by the end and he’s there standing over me like, ‘Nah, go again. Another one. Defenders gonna catch you.’

“We joke now that my success is 50-50. Half mine, half his and my mum’s. They put in the work you don’t see. In those early years, though, the balance was waaaay more on their side.”

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Broja also discussed his inspirations, explaining that his affinity for Brazilian legend Ronaldo came from his father, after he would show him clips on YouTube.

But alongside R9, Broja namedropped Lorik Cana – the first and only Albanian to play in the Premier League before him.

It was this that fuelled his discussion about flying the flag for his nation and what it meant to represent Albania, who he earned his first senior international cap for in 2020.

“There was a moment when the England under-21s wanted me and, yeah, I thought about it and what I wanted for my future, but honestly … I didn’t have to think too long,” he explained: “I grew up in England, but I’m proud to be Albanian.

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“Every time I travel for international duty and pull on the red and black I feel this incredible pride and excitement.”

The 21-year-old added, explaining how he relishes the opportunity of being able to shoulder responsibility and expectations at a young age for his country, while also expressing his desire to fire them to a World Cup.

“You can step up and be a star. And if you do well, you can become an icon for eternity. When my career is over, I want my name to live on. For Albania. For my dad.”

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OFFICAL: Ibrahim Gusau replaces Pinnick as new NFF President

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Ibrahim Gusau arose as the new Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) President replacing Amaju Pinnick.

Gusau arose as the champ at the NFF elections held in Benin City on Friday, September 30, 2022.

Following a while of vulnerability, the NFF races occurred with delegates of the world football overseeing body FIFA in participation.

There were 10 qualified contender to supplant Pinnick following eight years of his administration.

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The candidates included Hon. Suleiman Yahaya-Kwande, Mallam Adam Mouktar Mohammed, former VPs, Barr. Seyi Akinwunmi and Mallam Shehu Dikko.

Others were Alhaji Ibrahim Musa Gusau, Barr. Musa Amadu, Dr. Christian Emeruwa, Peterside Idah, Alhaji Abba Abdullahi Yola and UK-based David-Buhari Doherty.

In the initial voting results, Gusau recorded 21 votes, Akinwunmi 12 votes, Dikko six votes, Yola and Idah had one vote each.

Gusau the former Zamfara State Football Association chairman would emerge victorious and now lead the NFF for the next four years.

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