‘Never heard him say he wanted PSG exit’: Marco Verratti on Neymar

In this April 26, 2019 photo Paris Saint-Germain’s Brazilian forward Neymar (L) and Paris Saint-Germain’s Italian midfielder Marco Verratti attend a training session at the Stade de France, in Saint-Denis, near Paris. (AFP)
Updated 29 July 2019

‘Never heard him say he wanted PSG exit’: Marco Verratti on Neymar

  • Barcelona vice president Jordi Cardoner said in late-June the Brazil forward would like to return to the Camp Nou
  • World’s most expensive footballer joined French champions for $252 million

PARIS: Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Marco Verratti said on Monday that Neymar had never told him he wanted to the leave the club.
Barcelona vice president Jordi Cardoner said in late-June the Brazil forward would like to return to the Camp Nou.
“I have never heard him say he wanted to leave,” Verratti told French broadcaster RMC.
“Beyond that I don’t know what he has been saying to the club.
“When a player wants to leave, the club should let him leave. Depending on the financial conditions agreed by the club of course. But you can’t keep a player who wants to leave,” the 26-year-old added.
The world’s most expensive footballer who joined the French champions for 222 million euros ($252 million) is yet to feature during their pre-season tour in Asia and French media reported he will miss Tuesday’s game against Sydney in China.
He will also sit out the French Champions Trophy against Rennes in Shenzhen next Saturday as he completes a six-match domestic ban for an incident involving a fan the last time the teams met, in the French Cup final.
“Of course I would be disappointed to see him leave, he’s a great player,” Verratti said, who has been ruled out of the fixture against the Australians.
“It’s between him and the club,” the Italy international addded.


India beats New Zealand in 2nd T20, leads 5-match series 2-0

Updated 26 January 2020

India beats New Zealand in 2nd T20, leads 5-match series 2-0

  • New Zealand struggled to achieve any real momentum
  • The match raised further questions about the coaching and captaincy of the New Zealand team

AUCKLAND, New Zealand: K.L. Rahul made an unbeaten 57 Sunday to steer India to a seven-wicket win over New Zealand in the second Twenty20 international and to a 2-0 lead in the five-match series.
Rahul and Shreyas Iyer put on 86 for the third wicket as India cruised past New Zealand’s total of 132-5 with 2.3 overs to spare. Shivam Dube (13 not out) hit a six from the bowling of Tim Southeein in the 18th over to lift India to 135-3.
Iyer made 58 not out and Rahul 56 as India beat New Zealand by six wickets with an over to spare in the first match of the series.
New Zealand made 203-5 batting first in that match but on Sunday, on the same pitch, it struggled to achieve any real momentum. During the second match the pitch played much slower and India bowled expertly to restrict New Zealand’s total.
Martin Guptill made 33 in a 48-run opening partnership with Colin Munro and Tim Seifert made an unbeaten 33 at the end of the innings but New Zealand wasn’t able to reach a total that could stretch India’s deep batting lineup.
Rohit Sharma (8) and captain Virat Kohli (11) were out relatively cheaply but Rahul and Iyer (44) sped India toward a comprehensive victory.
Dube came to the crease shortly before the end and quickly brought the match to a conclusion.
“I think we backed up the first match with a very good performance today, especially with the ball,” Kohli said. “We demanded that the bowlers stood up and took control of what we wanted to do out there.
“I think our line and length and the way we wanted to bowl on that wicket, sticking to one side of the wicket and being shorter was a very good feature of us as a team and helped us restrict a very good New Zealand team.”
New Zealand’s total was inadequate, even on a slower pitch, and India almost toyed with the home side as it made its way to a comfortable win.
New Zealand named the same team that lost the first match of the series and batted after winning the toss, just as it batted when it was outplayed in the first match of the series.
The match raised further questions about the coaching and captaincy of the New Zealand team after its humiliating test series loss in Australia last month. New Zealand showed again Sunday it hasn’t the talent to compete with the best teams in the world.
“As a batting unit we probably needed another 15 or 20 to make that total more competitive,” said New Zealand captain Kane Williamson. “But credit to the way the India side bowled, they’re a class side in all departments and they put us under pressure throughout that middle period.”

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