Barcelona boss pleased with the involvement of summer signings

Barcelona head coach Ernesto Valverde has admitted that he is pleased with the involvement of the club’s summer signings during the recent friendly game against Tottenham Hotspur. The trident of Clement Lenglet, Malcom, and Arthur featured during the 2-2 draw versus Spurs which they won on penalties and Valverde was particularly pleased with the efforts of the latter, who has no European experience to his name.

Speaking to reporters, he said: “The new signings? They all played really well, it was evident that both Lenglet and Arthur have been training with us for a little while. We had no doubts about Lenglet because he already played in Spain and we have been working on Arthur settling in but this was very encouraging. We believe Arthur can give us a lot in terms of possession, bringing the ball forward and offering a goal threat.”

Everton remain favourites to sign Yerry Mina

The agent and uncle of Yerry Mina has indicated that Everton remain the front-runners to pursue the Colombian from Barcelona this summer. The centre-back could not make an impression for the Blaugrana after his winter move last term and he has now been linked with a probable exit with Clement Lenglet recently joining the Catalan giants.

In a report covered by The Mirror, Mina’s uncle Jair admitted that the Toffees are leading the race for the central defender but the Colombian would prefer staying put with Barcelona, he said: “For now, Yerry Mina has shown only one part. We wanted him to be in Barcelona and it was not easy. It was the number one goal and he got it. He wants to succeed in the world of football and he must do it at a big club like Barcelona. I spoke with Ramon Planes and he told me to be calm, that he has a contract and that what arrives will be heard. For Yerry Mina it would be a failure not to play. He just wants to play.”

Rio Ferdinand explains the change in Lionel Messi versus Nigeria

Former Manchester United star Rio Ferdinand suggested that Lionel Messi showed a huge change in body language during Argentina’s crucial 2-1 victory over Nigeria at the World Cup. Argentina opened the scoring within the 14th minute of the game after an impressive finish from Lionel Messi but ultimately it was Marcos Rojo, who caught the headlines after netting the winner four minutes from time.

Speaking after the game, Ferdinand praised the Barcelona star for lifting his performance on the night where Argentina needed a win to avoid a shock group-stage exit, he said:"His body language, immediately as he came on the pitch, was different to what we've seen in this World Cup. He looked like there was a spark about him, there's an energy about him, that 'this was my stage, my moment now'. His touch for the goal...you can't underestimate how good this guy's touch is, not only his first touch but his second touch after that."

Yerry Mina has no plans of leaving Barcelona this summer

Colombian defender Yerry Mina has stressed that he does not have plans of leaving Barcelona despite the criticism levied at him during the second half of the season. The centre-back was recruited by the Blaugrana during the winter transfer window after Javier Mascherano left for China and he has since struggled for consistency at the heart of the defence.

Despite this, the 23-year-old is unfazed by the situation and he is looking forward to making better progress next term, he told Mundo Deportivo: “I arrived in the middle of the season, in a difficult moment, I talked to some of my teammates, but now I have to show why I am here and do it well since the start of the next preseason. Compete with Piqué and Umtiti? I know that the beginnings are not easy, but I have all the desire in the world to succeed here. Going out of Barca is not something that goes through my head, nor will it happen.”

Roberto Firmino speaks on his strong relationship with Philippe Coutinho

Liverpool striker Roberto Firmino has admitted that he shares a fond relationship with Philippe Coutinho despite the latter leaving the Reds for Barcelona midway through last season. The 25-year-old spent five seasons at Anfield where he contributed 41 goals and 35 assists but the urge to join the Blaugrana was too hard to refuse.

Regardless of this, Firmino continues to share a good bond with his compatriot whilst playing for the Brazilian national side and he is looking forward to sharing the same dressing room during the upcoming World Cup in Russia. Speaking exclusively to Four Four Two, he said: “Everybody knows that Coutinho is a great footballer – here in England they call him ‘The Magician’. He made his decision to join Barcelona, but every time we play for the Seleção we have a chat and maintain that friendship. He's an exceptional guy – one of the best friends football has given me. I believe Brazil is enjoying a good uprising since Tite took over – everyone is playing good football.”

Philippe Coutinho Admits Disappointment After Levante Defeat

Barcelona midfielder Philippe Coutinho has expressed his disappointment after the club were not able to maintain their unbeaten league run. The Blaugrana had not lost any of their previous 36 games in the Spanish La Liga and they appeared on the course to go invincible before succumbing to an away defeat at Levante.

Ernesto Valverde Delivers His Verdict On Lionel Messi’s Injury

Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde has remained calm about the ongoing injury concern to star forward Lionel Messi. The Argentina international missed the friendlies against Italy and Spain during the break with a hamstring niggle and he is now said to be doubt for the La Liga outing against Sevilla this weekend.

Luis Suarez Opens Up On His Injury Concern

Barcelona striker Luis Suarez has admitted that he was worried that his knee injury in August would derail his long-term prospects with the Catalan giants. The Uruguay international suffered the problem during the Super Cup defeat at the hands of Real Madrid, and he struggled to recapture his form on his return to the starting lineup.

Carlo Ancelotti: Lionel Messi And Cristiano Ronaldo The Difference In The Champions League

Former Bayern Munich manager Carlo Ancelotti believes Barcelona and Real Madrid are favourites to reach the final of the Champions League, as they possess the individual talents of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. The La Liga duo have cruised through the quarter-final stage with Messi and Ronaldo dominating the scoresheet for their respective sides.

In a report covered by Goal.com, Ancelotti was asked about his favourites for this season’s Champions League, where he said: "Clearly Champions League games are decided by the smallest of details and in a one-off game it is sufficient for a refereeing decision to knock someone out.Madrid and Barcelona are favourites for their experience and because they have Ronaldo and Messi.It is clear [Juventus and Roma] are not favourites because they are up against two European powers but they still will have their chances."

Gerard Pique warns Barcelona of Chelsea's attacking threat

Barcelona defender Gerard Pique has urged his teammates to be wary of the threat possessed by Chelsea despite their mixed performances since the turn of the year. The Blues ended a run of back-to-back defeats with victories over West Bromwich Albion and Hull City, and Pique is not taking the game likely with no wins in their previous seven meetings with the Capital outfit.

In a report covered by Four Four Two, Pique admitted that the Catalans have high expectations on their head, and though they go as favourites for the Champions League tie, a poor result against the Blues could turn their worse into one which is not so good.

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