Tom Brady "Felt Like an Outsider to the 2008 Patriots" and other lessons learned from the latest episode of Man in the Arena

A theme in episode 5 of the documentary series is the former Patriots quarterback discussing the transition his life went through between 2008 and 2012, both on and off the field. (Author: Gardener)

PatriotsTom Brady has spent 20 seasons with the Patriots. A theme on the latest episode of the documentary series "Man in the Arena" is former Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, who talks about the changes his life went through between 2008 and 2012, both on and off the field. Episode 5, titled "No Guarantees," focuses on a time when a new group of gamers - what Brady referred to as "The Patriots 2.0" - was taking shape around him. Away from football, the relationship between Brady and his wife Gisele Bündchen is recorded. Bündchen can be seen in the episode with Brady, former Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker and ex-Patriots assistant coach Bill O’Brien. According to Bündchen, the relationship with Brady grew from a friendship to "a few dates". “Then he invited me to go to my first soccer game that was against the Chargers,” recalls Bündchen. "I thought it was the most boring thing I've ever seen in my life," confessed Bündchen, noting the differences between American football and soccer. A defining moment in Brady's career came in the first game of the 2008 season when he tore his ACL and MCL on a tackle from Bernard Pollard. The injury sidelined Brady all season and broke away from his normal life. "When I was out all season I realized that I was enjoying the game so much," said Brady. "There is a big void in your life when you don't do what you love to do, which is being part of the team." "I felt like an underdog for this team," said Brady. Brady said he was "anxious" and "stressed" after giving birth to his first son Jack in 2007 while trying to reconcile his personal life when his relationship with Bündchen began. Jack is the son of Brady and the actress Bridget Moynahan, who was living on the west coast at the time. "How will it all work out?" Brady remembered wondering. As Bündchen explained, it was for her to play a part in Jack's life. "It was really the greatest blessing in my life," said Bündchen. "I love Jack like he's my own little munchkin." Brady and Bündchen married in 2009, deviating from a schedule the quarterback had always adopted. "I didn't think I was going to get married until I was late in my career," admitted Brady. "I thought I was getting married in my late 30s or early 40s." But as Brady noted, he was married his 11th NFL season with two children. "My life has been led a different way than I thought," said Brady. Bill Belichick designed the 2011 Patriots Offensive around the Post-Lockout Environment In 2011, the NFL went on a four-month hiatus when owners locked players out while negotiating a new collective agreement. The March-July lockout prevented players from going through a normal off-season. Brady and the Patriots got together for informal training sessions at Boston College as the players tried to keep up with the game. When the lockout ended and the team started working with coaches again, coach Bill Belichick waited with a new game plan. "When we first got back to the facility, manager Belichick said, 'There are a lot of teams that have probably not played [expletive] for the whole off-season,'" said Brady. So we're going to try to play a lot of no-huddle. ”The team's commitment to being quick paid off as New England became one of the most productive offensives in the league again. O’Brien and Brady took a moment during the episode to resolve their memorable side argument in a 2011 win over Washington. The incident occurred after a pass was intercepted in the end zone intended for Patriots receiver Tiquan Underwood. Brady and O'Brien remembered the slogan-laden exchanges between them and found that the argument was something they could get past quickly. Brady said O'Brien's nickname was based on his temperament. "We had a nickname for Billy," said Brady. According to Brady, O'Brien's temper would simmer until it boiled over. O'Brien was quick to remind Brady, however, that "you too are the teapot". During the 2011 season, Patriots players began listing O'Brien's "Teapot" episodes on the side of an actual teapot. Brady and the Patriots got off to a terrible start in yet another Super Bowl against the Giants. In New England's first offensive game, Brady committed an intentional grounding from the Patriots' end zone, resulting in a security for New York. "A lot of people have likely lost their Super Bowl bets when it comes to the first person to score in the game," joked Brady. “They didn't know it would be a security. Although Brady described the loss of Super Bowl XLII to the Giants as his "worst loss" after the 2007 season, it is clear that he values ​​his New York colleagues from that period very much. "They were always a little thorn in our side, and I think because they weren't afraid," said Brady of the Giants. "Sometimes we put fear on some other teams, but never on the Giants." In the midst of a back and forth fight in Super Bowl XLVI after the 2011 season, Brady reluctantly gave the Giants credit. "In typical Giants fashion, they're just fighters," Brady said. "There were a lot of what-if games in this game," said Brady. "Unfortunately the [expletive] Giants were on the other end." After one of the defeats at the Super Bowl, Bündchen could be heard saying, "My husband can't throw the ball [expletive] and catch the ball at the same time." The comment was a response to Welkers sharp drop in the fourth quarter that could have brought the Patriots close to sealing the game. "You can't say that," said Brady to Bündchen, although at first she didn't think it was a momentous moment. "I thought I was gentle in what I said," said Bündchen. “The next morning when they did it on Wes, it broke my heart,” said Bündchen, “because I thought, 'Are you kidding?' For me, this is the hardest working guy I know on this team. “I know where her heart is and I know who she is, so I almost agreed with her at the time,” Welker admitted. Even in their farewell week, Bill Belichick and the Patriots were big winners on Sunday. “It's just funny that you remember the one [Drop],” complained Welker. As Brady correctly pointed out, Welker naturally ended up in second place on this trip. "That was a huge game in the game, but at the same time we had to play for third place," said Brady, "and I didn't do that either." "There was no one who could define what it meant to be a great teammate, what was the right thing to do like Wes," explained Brady. “You know, Wes had the most amazing career for the Patriots. But we didn't win the Super Bowls back then. If I get a team to go into battle with, Wes Welker will be on that grid. "


How a chance encounter with Dubs began this photographer's career

Jordan Jimenez, 23, captured the two most iconic images of this Warriors season ... (Author: Gardener)

Jordan JimenezThe two most iconic photos from this season of the Golden State Warriors were not captured on the field by an accredited Associated Press or Getty Images agent. They were taken by a 23-year-old Bay Area photographer sitting in Section 115. "It's been many years and a lot of practice, and it's nice to see it all come true," said 23-year-old Jordan Jimenez, a freelance photographer who left the University of San Francisco in 2018 to start his media brand, Jsquared Visuals . “In the flow of the game, I don't think about what will go viral or possibly make history. I want to document and photograph artistically, of course, but then I have to photograph and keep moving because the game is happening. ”Jimenez's first viral shot came on November 12th when the Warriors took on the Chicago Bulls. He caught Steph Curry right when Curry looked away from the basket moments before his 3-pointer whizzed as an arena of teammates, defenders and fans stared in frozen anticipation. Should this photo of Curry be in every NBA art museum? (via @_JordanJimenez) - Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) November 14, 2021 With Jimenez named "Coldest Photo of the Year," the image of Jimenez solidifies Curry's mythical stature - a Sagittarius who isn't afraid has to look away, even when the rest of us look on in amazement. "I practiced taking hundreds of shots of players while I was training basketball," says Jimenez. “I practiced this photo just like Curry trained his shots in the gym. It was a mix of hard work and luck for me, just like basketball. ”Jimenez also documented Juan Toscano-Anderson's brutal fall on JaVale McGee's cup in a recent game against the Phoenix Suns - a poster that has since been included in a bootleg -T-shirt has been converted and is available as an official print with a portion of the proceeds to the JTA Foundation. How did Jimenez, a San Bruno product that once attended youth league games in their neighborhood to practice taking basketball photos make it to the Chase Center? A few off-pitch moments captured by Jordan Jimenez, including Jordan Poole throwing away the ceremonial square at a Giants game in September, as well as gasoline. In 2019, Jimenez was invited by his friend Packie Turner, who happens to be a well-respected sports coach in the area, to photograph a high profile basketball invitation tournament in Burlingame. The game showed promising talent including Toscano-Anderson and Poole. At this point, Jimenez and Poole, who are only a year apart, made an organic connection through video games, music, and food. Jimenez was already a budding photographer on the local scene, a freelance role he took on when he was only 17; he has also worked with Steph Curry for Slam Magazine and Under Armor ("the highlight of it all," he says of what he's done so far). After the Pickup Hoops event, Jimenez stayed in touch with Poole and secured a few Warriors photo shoots during the off-season. He later found gigs with other prominent Bay Area characters, including rapper P-Lo. Now, during the 2021-22 season, Jimenez was able to show his range of talent to the entire Warriors fan base. Jordan Jimenez, personal photographer for the Golden State Warriors Shooting Guard, Jordan Poole, pictured outside the Chase Center on Wednesday, December 8th. "Jordan [Poole] takes me to games and I work closely with him on and off the pitch," says Jiménez. “I send my photos to everyone on the team, but I really care about Jordan and handle the media visualization for him. Jordan Jimenez pictured with Jordan Poole including Media Day, left and in New York City. Jimenez and Poole make breakout appearances just in time as the Dubs are still trying to build a hype after the controversial move to the Chase Center. Unlike the famous "Roaracle" in Oakland, Chase is not an established draw and does not have the same appeal as the collective fan base. There isn't even a picture of Curry, Draymond Green, and Klay Thompson in the common square in San Francisco. Recent photos of Jordan Jimenez capturing a Draymond Green Flex, left, and Stephen Curry during practice. But for the first time in San Francisco's reborn basketball history, the Dubs are a squad of championship squads and they have fans back in the stands. Jimenez is aware of the challenges and his unique position on the team to capture everything on the pitch. "Of course, Chase is not the same as Oracle, but since I've been here for every game this season, I can already see that the atmosphere is developing its own personality," says Jimenez. “[Poole] and I are about the same age so it's really exciting for both of us to have a great season here after building a friendship over many years. As the personal photographer of the Golden State Warriors Shooting Guard, Jordan Poole, pictured above, Jordan Jimenez has captured him both on and off the field. Jimenez takes his routine seriously like Poole and the Golden State players. He usually arrives a few hours before the tip and spends all of the time before the game taking photos with his Sony A7R III. During the game, he has lower-level seats that he says will keep him locked in the action on the floor. When he gets home, he often stays up until 3 a.m. choosing the best photos to send to Poole and others. The young photographer is still getting used to the fact that his work is so widely appreciated, especially online. Just minutes after posting the aforementioned Curry photo, Jimenez said he received hundreds of DMs from coveted publications, friends, and even family members in the Philippines. However, like a professional basketball player, he still has nights off. It's not always about winning, ”he says. But would have been crazy - JSquared (@_JordanJimenez) November 11, 2021 of an explosive alley-oop slam between Curry and the fan-favorite newcomer Gary Payton II. Jimenez compared it to a famous alley-oop -Photo of LeBron James and Dwyane Wade showing D-Wade slipping away with arms outstretched after a gentle pass to James, who rises behind him for the ultimate finish. But like the Warriors this season, he rebounded with an even stronger performance: in the next game, he grabbed the curry look-away shot that would be a career-defining moment for many. Jimenez hopes it's just the beginning. “I know how much work I put into this craft,” says Jimenez. “Countless and sleepless nights… it's always a bit of luck to be in the same room with these people and introduce myself, but I know I worked for this opportunity and I want to share it with everyone.” Alan Chazaro is a writer and Bay Area teachers. Follow his updates on Twitter and Instagram @alan_chazaro.


Thursday night football pick, prediction from NFL model on 132-96 reel

SportsLine's model simulated Los Angeles Chargers vs. Kansas City Chiefs 10,000 times and revealed its NFL picks (Author: Gardener)

NFLThe Kansas City Chiefs (9-4) will visit the Los Angeles Chargers in a showdown at Thursday Night Football. Kansas City has won six straight games with the goal of making it seven. Los Angeles has won two consecutive matchups and is currently one game behind Kansas City in the AFC West standings. Kansas City is favored by three points on the latest Chiefs vs. Chiefs picks. Make sure to check out the brand new SportsLine projection model for NFL predictions and betting tips. The model, which simulates every NFL game 10,000 times, has increased by nearly $ 7,000 since its inception more than six years ago for $ 100 players on top-rated NFL picks. The model competes in week 15 of the 2021 season with an incredible run of 132 to 96 on top-rated NFL picks that date back to the 2017 season. The model also ranked in the top 10 NFL picks on NFLickWatch for the past five years, beating more than 94 percent of CBS Sports Football Pick'em players four times in that time. Now the model has simulated Chiefs vs. Chargers 10,000 times and has just revealed its coveted NFL picks and predictions. You can now go to SportsLine to see the model's tips. Here are several NFL odds and betting lines for Chiefs vs. * KC: Chiefs are 4-0 overall against the spread in their last four games. * LAC: Chargers are 5-1 ATS in their last six Thursday games. Kansas City ranked fourth overall offensive with 389.6 yards per game. Mahomes is currently fourth in passing yards (3,642), fifth in passing touchdowns (27) and ninth in QBR (57.3). The 2018 NFL MVP has thrown more than 300 yards in four matchups to date. Mahomes has also taken better care of football in recent games. Mahomes went 35 of 50 for 406 yards with five pass touchdowns in that competition. Los Angeles has one of the best young callers in the league, the sophomore pro Justin Herbert. The Oregon product ranks third in passing yards (3,822) in the NFL, second in passing touchdowns (30), and second in QBR (67.5). The sixth overall pick for 2020 has thrown more than 300 yards in seven games so far. Herbert narrowly missed that mark in his Week 14 win against the New York Giants, but still played solid football. The 2020 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year has an absolute rocket on the arm. He dropped a 59 yard bomb on Jalen Guyton before half time in that game for a result. SportsLine's model leans under the total score and predicts that the teams will collectively score 52 points. The model also says that one side of the spread has all of the value. You can only see the model's Chiefs vs. Chargers picks on SportsLine. Who will win Chargers vs. Chiefs in Thursday Night Football? Head over to SportsLine now to see which side of the Chargers vs. Chiefs spreads to jump on, from the advanced model that soared nearly $ 7,000 on its NFL picks, and find out.


Big day for Hun football as Raiders send six more players to Division 1 schools

The offensive line position has always been a strength of Todd Smith's roster (Author: Gardener)

HunTodd Smith, Head Coach of the Hun School, kept the writers very busy on and around the signing days. If you haven't read this story about the pipeline from the Raiders' campus (and also from Smith's time in West Windsor-Plainsboro South) to the next level, it's pretty intriguing: Hun was a haven for gamers taking the next level. It's no different in 2021: after Hun dominated the field this year, going 9-0 and blowing the competition away thanks to a list filled with talent, the two days of signing for NCAA football were always very busy. Junior quarterback Marco Lainez got the ball rolling (or thrown) the ball on Monday when he announced his signing to play for the University of Iowa in 2023. On Wednesday, however, it was all about the players who will be on campus next year and play in the division 1 level. Hun had SIX players sign in front of school Wednesday in a ceremony, naturally highlighted by four-star offensive tackle Jacob Allen, who will stay in the state and go to Rutgers University. "It was amazing to be with all the guys at Hun with like-minded goals," said Allen. It's a pretty endless competition (at Hun), not just with guys with offers, but with guys across the board: every guy who's on the Hun soccer team is going to give it their all. There were also two more Big Ten signings (who will stick around as teammates over the next four years), a Southeastern Conference signing, and another group of players who will see themselves a lot more on a college campus over the next four years Years. Placekicker Will McManus, who was a star in defensive midfield at McDonogh School in Owings Mills, Maryland before focusing on shooting the elongated ball through the posts, will join tight end Owen Anderson of the University of Illinois . McManus is grateful for his teammates' guidance and looks forward to playing with Anderson next fall. "Owen has been involved in Illinois for a while," said McManus. “He's definitely had a huge impact, he brought Illinois to my attention. It's really hard to turn down Big Ten Football. McManus had played soccer for 13 years and credits the sport for helping him develop his strong leg. "I played until a little over a year ago," said McManus. “I stopped and started kicking. I've always been a very technical, basic person. Focusing on the techniques, transitioning to pedaling, with the technique and the basics, made it easier. My leg strength came from soccer too, of course. ”Perhaps the coolest story of the day comes from offensive lineman David Siegel, who will be attending Vanderbilt University. You know that, of course, because you are reading this story. "It's one thing to be a kid and dream of playing college football," Siegel said. "But if you sign up and the school buys a billboard and you're going to be into it, that's great." One thing that helped Siegel reach the SEC level is the competitive practices with the Raiders, which enabled him to compete against so many talent every day. "I loved every minute playing for Hun," said Siegel. "The biggest thing for me was the competition I had to face every day in training with the likes of Owen Wafle, Logan Howland and Dante Barone, all of whom were great D-linemen to play against." Dante Barone's brother Francesco Barone (security) also signed on Wednesday and will join teammate Jake Bingham from the University of Pennsylvania. Francesco had a few FBS offers but couldn't turn down the Wharton School of Business. "The most important thing to me was the Wharton program," said Barone. I think the program is going in the right direction. “I'm also happy that Jake will be with me. Jake and I got extremely close last year and are really looking forward to being there again. "


Aaron Rodgers stars the Packers, but don't ignore Trainer Matt LaFleur

Matt LaFleur's odds range from 0.800 to 45 games. After the defeat of the Arizona Cardinals on Monday evening, LaFleur also leads the team that has the NFC's number 1 four games to go. When we talk about the Green Bay Packers, LaFleur is seldom featured as one of the key figures in ... (Author: Gardener)

Aaron RodgersGuy Chamberlin, who won 0.784 percent of his games from 1922 to 1927, has the highest percentage of profits of all coaches with at least 50 NFL games. Matt LaFleur's odds range from 0.800 to 45 games. After the defeat of the Arizona Cardinals on Monday evening, LaFleur also leads the team that has the NFC's number 1 four games to go. When we talk about the Green Bay Packers, LaFleur is seldom named as one of the key figures in their success. That's the Aaron Rodgers Effect. But it's hard to deny LaFleur's success. LaFleur is 36-9 years old as the head coach. LaFleur is descended from the Sean McVay tree. McVay had a record 51-25 for a win rate of 0.671 prior to Monday night's game. LaFleur is way ahead of its much more celebrated counterpart. Here a lot of people give credit to Rodgers, a true quarterback of the generation. Mike McCarthy won 61.8 percent of his games and a Super Bowl with Rodgers, and nobody gives McCarthy much credit for that. LaFleur will have the same experience until we see what he does without Rodgers, but that's probably unfair. LaFleur has done very well this season. The Packers spent most of the season without left tackle David Bakhtiari, cornerback Jaire Alexander and pass rusher Za'Darius Smith, three elite players. LaFleur had to massage two different Rodgers situations, first when reporting to camp after an off-season asking for trade and then when Rodgers made headlines for making misleading comments about his COVID-19 vaccination status. LaFleur has held it together and the Packers keep winning. Even when the Packers were clearly understaffed for a game at the Cardinals, they found a way to win. The frequency of injuries on their offensive line becomes a problem. After Adams there is still a lack of talent in the passing game. But LaFleur deserves the doubt that he can prevail. Of course, it doesn't matter if LaFleur doesn't win in the playoffs. The home defeat in the NFC championship game to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last season when he made the infamous decision to score a field goal rather than a touchdown late in the game overshadows much of LaFleur's success. Taking a job at Rodgers as quarterback means breaking a high bar, and even winning 80 percent of your regular season games isn't going to please everyone. All LaFleur can do is keep winning games and see what the playoffs bring. Green Bay has a chance at No. 1 in NFC. If the Packers get that, LaFleur may be recognized as the NFL Coach of the Year. Green Bay Packers coach Matt LaFleur and quarterback Aaron Rodgers have together contributed to many victories. Here are the power rankings after week 14 of the NFL season: Combine his 331-yard game with his fantastic game earlier this season against Bill Belichick and the Patriots, and maybe in the last four games he can argue that he did the Texan is starting in 2022. There are now around 8,000 reasons to believe that Urban Meyer's tenure with Lou Holtz, Rich Kotite, Adam Gase, Matt Patricia, David Shula, Bobby Petrino or one of the disastrous coaching times in NFL history is going under. The Lions ran out of gas after their first win in Week 13, and it didn't help to miss out on so many players. Dan Campbell's challenge, by the way, is to let his team play hard without pursuing anything tangible. Zach Wilson was 10 of 26 for 92 yards prior to the last six minutes of garbage time and stat padding. It's too early to write Wilson off, but it's not too early to worry that he's having a really bad season of rookies. Kenny Golladay has 24 catches for 424 yards and no touchdowns with three missed games due to injury. That was after a 20-338-2 line last season when he was struggling with injuries. In the last two seasons that was 44-762-2 over 15 games. He's 29 years old and never made much of an impression with the Dolphins before joining the Bears, so Chicago is unlikely to have spotted a future star. But the highlights were fun and he'll be a good kick-returner for the near future. With team owner David Tepper being impulsive since taking over the franchise, the future of coach Matt Rhule has to be a talking point in the final weeks of the season. Cordarrelle Patterson started out this season as a gadget player who did a little bit of everything. Then he has 16, 13, and 16 rushing attempts in the past three weeks and is more of a regular running back than a versatile pawn. Tyler Lockett's big day got him over 1,000 for the season and he's 34 yards away from his career high, with four games to go. Lockett has been very good for years and has taken his game to a new level this season. If you are obnoxious and get involved with the other team’s logo before a game in midfield, you cannot be penalized 35-0 in the first half. Alvin Kamara came back and promptly raced for 120 yards with 27 carries. He also had four catches for 25 yards. You cannot blame the Saints for giving Kamara all he could; he's pretty much all they have on the offensive while trying to stay on the wildcard hunt. It's a big final leg of the season for the 28-year-old Parker, whose career has been full of ups and downs. Washington is still in the wildcard race but it won't last long as injuries pile up. In a bad NFC wildcard race, they are actually very much alive. Problem is, do you trust the Vikings they won't blow the games on the track? They tried their best to screw up the Steelers' win last week. Of the five 6-7 teams in the NFC, the Eagles have the best odds to reach the playoffs at 36.8 percent, according to Football Outsiders. No offense to the Eagles, but if they make it through the postseason it will be further evidence that the NFL shouldn't have expanded the playoff field. Watt suffered a groin injury in the second half of last week's game. His status for Sunday's game against Tennessee is paramount to the Steelers' playoff hopes. The Broncos had a pretty good week for their playoff hopes. Their game against the Bengals next week is huge for their postseason chances and a playoff spot could lead to long-term offseason decisions. The Bengals showed a lot of moxie to level Sunday's game against the 49ers. And that's all well and good, but they ultimately lost and with a game on deck at the Broncos they are in danger of falling behind in a tough AFC playoff race. The offensive still doesn't look good. The defense made Tyler Huntley look pretty good after replacing Lamar Jackson. It's just hard to get excited about this Browns team. George Kittle was the first ever tight end with 150 yards and a touchdown in back-to-back games. Linebacker Bobby Okereke knows what the Patriots the Colts will face on Saturday are doing well and what Indianapolis must do to slow them down. “You can run the [ball] and hand to hand, play well against teams physically. If the Colts can hold back New England's frantic offensive, they stand a chance of a big win. A few days before a huge game against the Chiefs on Thursday night, the Chargers put the left tackle Rashawn Slater on the COVID-19 list. If he has to miss the game, it will be a huge loss to the Chargers Offensive, which is already monitoring the condition of Austin Ekeler's ankle. John Harbaugh sounded optimistic that Lamar Jackson will be playing this week due to an ankle injury. Even if Jackson plays, will he be effective? We all know that Jackson needs mobility to be himself. If the Bills get that call, they would have first-and-goal chance to win in regulation. Julio Jones came back with 33 yards on four catches. Maybe he has to get back on track after an injury-related absence. Or maybe that's just all that will move Jones forward. That was the kind of win that can spark a late season run. The Rams were against it, especially after cornerback Jalen Ramsey and tight end Tyler Higbee were put on the COVID-19 list and found a way to win. Ezekiel Elliott had 12 carries on Sunday. Corey Clement, who had nine carries for 20 yards prior to Sunday, had 13 carries against Washington. Elliott had 45 yards and the underutilized Clement had 44. Elliottts fade this season is a real problem. The Chiefs outperformed the Raiders this season by 89-23. Was the win against the Raiders on Sunday an advantageous matchup for Kansas City or a sign that they are ready to take off? We'll know more after Thursday when they face the Chargers. With a win, it will be almost impossible to catch up with the chiefs in the division. The Patriots are now two games ahead of the Bills at AFC East. Losing the Ravens also helped them a little bit in getting the # 1 seeds. That means they have a little less pressure on Saturday in Indianapolis in a difficult game. The Cardinals were the best team in football for three months. Then they lose a competitive game, in large part because of two interceptions from Kyler Murray, and they drop to # 3 on the NFC. Leonard Fournette had 113 yards and a touchdown in defeating the Bills. Fournette was cut by the low Jaguars last season and was almost cut by the Buccaneers towards the end of the season when he did not fit on the offensive. It's a surprising career turnaround for a player who looked like a surefire bust not long ago. A healthy Aaron Jones had five carries on Sunday night. Jones has a lot of value as a recipient, too, but it seems clear that Dillon is the back of choice now.


Dallas Remaining Games Preview How To Get # 1 Seed In NFC

Cowboys 2021 Playoff Outlook: Remaining Games Preview, What Needs Improvement How to Get # 1 Seed (Author: Gardener)

DallasAfter the Cowboys narrowly lost to Tom Brady and defending champions Tampa Bay Buccaneers early in the 2021 regular season, the Cowboys rode an offensive upswing, led by Dak Prescott and his arsenal of weapons to a six-game winning streak created by the advent of Rookie first-round voter Micah Parsons as the latest defensive phenomenon in the league and a breathtaking interception record from former second-round pick Trevon Diggs were greatly enhanced. However, the good times screeched to a halt as they consumed their own Velveeta before taking on the Denver Broncos, and they have been working on getting back in shape ever since. This resulted in the forgetting of November and setting up the team for a December that many thought would be light-hearted but has instead turned into an intense list of needed wins against opponents who are now no longer what they were in October. As quiet as it is kept, neither are the cowboys. Their defense sees the formidable return of all-pro pass rusher DeMarcus Lawrence and the return of Neville Gallimore and Randy Gregory in Week 14 against the Washington Football team. The result was a monstrous tandem with Parsons and Diggs and unannounced playmakers like Jayron Kearse patrolling secondary school, a unit that took an explosive foray into FedEx Field to counter the bad game of Dak Prescott and the offensive as a whole - the latter had to go immediately if this season is to end the way the cowboys hope it will end. It's the final leg of what still has the chance to be a very, very special year for Dallas, but only if they run out of food in the future and have some left over for them. Believe it or not, the Cowboys are still a top 2 offensive in terms of points scored per game, averaging 29.4 points per game - despite their recent shortcomings on this side of the ball. The fact of the matter is, however, they were mostly worn by their defensive compatriots and that is also a salute to what Dan Quinn has managed in the absence of key players and with breakout seasons from young stars like Micah Parsons and Trevon Diggs since it was one Question mark is what prevented Prescott and offensive coordinator Kellen Moore from running the train without falling onto the rails from time to time. Their streak against the Raiders ended up being some kind of "too little, too late" deal, but Prescott was seen ripping into the fourth quarter to force overtime and almost a win after falling down to 11 points in the third was quarter. The offensive mostly stuttered again in New Orleans the following week, but the touchdown drive that saw Prescott have a surgical section with large pieces by Amari Cooper, CeeDee Lamb and Michael Gallup was a reminder that there was still a V12 underneath it Hood is located. Her unproductive nature continued into week 14, only scoring one touchdown against WFT and going 1-on-6 into the red zone. It was kicker Greg Zuerlein and an explosive defense led by Micah Parsons, Randy Gregory, DeMarcus Lawrence and several other defenders that not only sustained the Washington win but ultimately saved the day and kept Prescott from literally throwing the game away. The Cowboys sit at 9-4 for the season after apparently righting the ship - at least defensively - against the Saints in New Orleans and then going to FedEx Field and causing the Washington Football team a loss, as reported by head coach Mike McCarthy promised. It starts the month of December just right after a brutal November that saw them see three out of four games to abruptly halt a six-game winning streak. It also keeps her at the top of NFC East and within striking distance of the NFC's # 1, currently owned by the Arizona Cardinals (10-2), a team the Cowboys will face before the end of the regular season. The importance of this upcoming battle cannot be stressed enough, but Dallas cannot afford to look ahead as the Washington Football Team and Philadelphia Eagles are still in the running for the NFC East title - if the cowboys are in theirs completely collapse last four games. They are enjoying a three-game lead in the division in second place at WFT after beating all three division opponents once this season but preparing to face one another before the regular season ends. As it stands, the Cardinals (10-2), Packers (10-3) and Buccaneers (10-3) are the only three clubs with better records than the Cowboys in the NFC, and it could especially be the Rams ( 8-4) finished their three-game slide in Week 13 against the utterly disappointing Jacksonville Jaguars. It's a four-horse race for the top seed in the NFC, and the cowboys are able to take it, but it won't be easy. For example, they don't just have to finish strong (then they can probably just afford one more loss) hoping the Cardinals lose to the Rams in week 14, and then be surprised by a team like the Colts in week 16 and / or Seahawks in week 18 - with the matchup against the cowboys in between. Should the Cardinals drop three of their last five and the Cowboys four of their last five, they'll both finish at 12-5, and then their eyes will turn to the Packers and Rams to determine the fate of everyone on the NFC. Can Aaron Rodgers, who has insufficient protection on his blindside due to an injury and even plays with a broken toe, lead the season to the end of the season? Romantically speaking, many will say yes, but remember that the Packers lost two of their last four games as they headed into Farewell Week. As for the Rams, they have just finished a three-game losing streak and have faced the Jaguars - Matthew Stafford was recently on an interception frenzy. And now the Rams have to travel to face the Cardinals in Week 14, followed by the Seahawks (who just pissed off the 49ers), an unpredictable Vikings team, a pissed off Ravens club, and a 49ers team fighting for one Wants to avenge loss in week 10. On the way in week 14, the Cowboys have a loss to the Buccaneers (head-to-head is the first tiebreaker), while the Cardinals take a loss to the Packers on their balance sheet and the Rams take a loss from both Cardinals and the Packers up your. As mentioned above, the Cowboys will have their chance at the Cardinals but not the Packers in the regular season. This outweighs a win over Arizona more heavily than any other remaining competitions - especially when it comes to talking about # 1 placement (in other words, they're all important, but this game is most important). If you look closely at each team's conference record (another deciding factor), the cowboys are in a great position and have a 6-1 record in the NFC. The Cardinals are 6-2 in the conference, the Packers are 8-2, the Buccaneers are 6-3 and the Rams bottom out in this category with a 5-3 record in conference play. It's really a royal rumble between these four teams to determine who gets a bye and home advantage in the first round, and that in a postseason that now only gives away one week bye to the No. 1 seeder while at the same time the playoff field will be expanded to seven teams per conference. All in all, the Cowboys must not only try to win, but that the other three teams suffer losses and then, should there be a break, hope that they own the H2H win, or at least have finished with the better conference record in a situation where the H2H does not apply (i.e. no matchup in the regular season vs. The Cowboys have the best strength of the schedule (.514) and the most points scored in the conference (104) among the Four NFC Horsemen, but that is only important when the tiebreaker verdict is this far down the list; yes, that's all complex, but the plan itself is simple for the cowboys: move up, sweep the division to end the season, and then wait to see if The road to the Super Bowl LVI will pass through Arlington, and the good news for them is that after stumbling heavily in November, they are still on the back of the other top NFC teams in December, hoping to win theirs Heels together Click and force the playoffs through the AT&T stadium. That's probably fair, considering Ering the Giants are once again one of the worst teams in the league and, having fired offensive coordinator Jason Garrett, are working on figuring out the manager's responsibilities while also figuring out when Daniel Jones can recapture the field. Jones is dealing with a neck strain that will likely cost him a second straight game in week 14 and endanger his availability for week 15 against the Cowboys. It's a Giants team that did better when they first faced the Cowboys in Week 5, and they were puppeted on at the AT&T Stadium. So it's hard to imagine that they'd be able to overthrow an aspiring, healthy Dallas defense even if the MetLife Stadium offensive could struggle. Whether it's Jones or Mike Glennon (who is currently struggling with a concussion) or Jake Fromm, the quarterback for Big Blue is going to run into a defensive buzz saw ready to give the ball away to a team that is often anxious to take the ball away. And it seems Garrett wasn't the [only] problem, considering the Giants' offensive is still struggling to score, averaging a staggering 17.6 points per game (28th)). But, and you will sense a theme here, if the Cowboys offensive comes back to life and the defense continues to file charges, there is no reason they can't put the Giants out of their misery on December 19th. Next meeting: Week 16 (AT&T Stadium) - Sunday, December 26th, 8:20 pm ET (Sunday Night Football) Unfortunately for Ryan Fitzpatrick, this has been at the cost of his health, but Washington has recently come alive, the winners of the last four games go in week 14. They will now try to protect FedEx Field from the invasion efforts of the cowboys, but it will not be easy. They lost all-pro defensive player Chase Young for the season, and his Pass Russian colleague Montez Sweat joined a list of other key defensive players on the team's COVID-19 list in week 14, with star tight End Logan Thomas to IR. goes with a serious knee injury of some sort. The cowboys took care of business, but thanks in large part to their defenses. They have a chance to sweep WFT in two weeks, but Prescott and Co. should be better prepared to produce in this one. Step on the tires and light the fire because this is the one that could determine the top seeding on the NFC. If the Cowboys are down to business by this point, there is no question that this will be a must-have - the home advantage and the only home game of the conference that is at stake. Every challenge the Cowboys have faced up to this point in the season and every lesson they have learned will be put to the test as they welcome Kyler Murray and the Cardinals. They can see this as a real litmus test of whether they're ready to fight for a Super Bowl this season, and they don't even get the luxury of calling that fight a home game. Sure, it's at the AT&T Stadium, but Murray feels perfectly at home winning games in Arlington (as he did in college and again on his visit to the NFL last season). The former NFL rookie of the year didn't shed light on the stats in his first game against the Cowboys, but he used 74 rushing yards and three combined touchdowns to lead the Cardinals to a 38-10 beating of the Cowboys on their own. And Murray is even better in 2021, largely aided by all-pro recipient DeAndre Hopkins - who returned by his side in Week 13 - and a defense that will be among the best in the league even without the future Hall of Famer J. either one of the highest scoring games in the NFL this season or one of the lowest for a number of reasons. Murray leads and offense, which averages a whopping 28.6 points per game (3rd) and his defensive counterparts only allow 18.7 points per game (4th). A team that is in the top 5 on both offense and defense is as impressive as their record suggests, but here's the kick: The cowboys aren't lazy in any category either. Despite her offensive battles over the past few weeks, Dak Prescott still leads the runner-up offensive in the NFL in terms of points scored per game (29.4) and defense ranks 12th in scoring allowable (22.3 per game). pro Football Outsiders - with 24.7% DVOA (the Cardinals are fifth with 22.4%). In a battle between unstoppable forces and immovable objects, this could easily be a preview of the NFC championship game. The Cardinals are likely to escape this with a win, either because of a big game too late or a wash against the Cowboys that will determine the outcome of an otherwise tough heavyweight fight. Philadelphia won three games in a four-game period from late October to late November but then lost to the Giants. Without Jalen Hurts out with an injury in Week 13, they could let Gardner Minshew take a necessary win, but not before the confused New York Jets could debunk the Philly defense early and often. It's the same defense that allowed the Cowboys to hang on to them in week 3 41, and Dak Prescott would do nothing better than use a healthy tandem of Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup and CeeDee Lamb to add to the Eagles to Ezekiel Elliott and. to sweep Tony Pollard served punches in the frantic attack. That is, of course, provided the starters are playing in that competition, but it is likely that they will have to. At one point this season the Cowboys had such a big head start in the division and were so close to snagging the # 1 seed that they could entertain potentially dormant starters in week 18, but nothing more. Their last five games are way too important now, having wet much of November, and that doesn't bode well for the Eagles - who will likely be in a must-see position for a possible wildcard spot. This means that not only may the Cowboys need this game for a shot to the top, depending on how things go with the Cardinals, Rams, and Packers, but it gives the added motivation the Eagles' playoff hopes to get too finish in Philadelphia. So expect the Cowboys to keep the accelerator on the ground for this time around and do something they've been on the verge of doing in several places in several places over the past few years: sweeping the entire division.


"The rivalry with Arsenal is pretty fierce"

The Canadian Olympic champion on the "mighty" words Emma Hayes read to the team before the FA Cup final and her WSL progress (Author: Gardener)

CanadianEssie Fleming played 433 minutes and made three starts in the Women's Super League last season but returned to the Chelsea locker room this summer with an Olympic gold medal. She wasn't a player for Canada in Tokyo 2020 either, scoring four knockout penalties, including two in the final against Sweden and a 1-0 win over the US in the semifinals, with Canada failing to beat her team Neighbors, the world champions, in 20 years. Few players make their international debut at the age of 15 and not many 23-year-olds have made 94 appearances after four months of their second season as a professional. This season, Fleming has already played nine minutes more than in the 2020-21 WSL campaign, started five games and scored three goals, and was voted Barclays Player of the Month in November. "It was definitely a busy time," said the attacking midfielder. Fleming chats on her day off, 12 hours after Chelsea held 0-0 against Juventus at Kingsmeadow and four days after they beat Arsenal 3-0 in the FA Cup Final at Wembley. That game was sore in many ways, with Arsenal beating Chelsea in the opening game. "The rivalry between our two clubs is pretty fierce," says Fleming. “You've been at the top of the league for most of the season and I think that was kind of in the back of our minds that we wanted to be in that position. If you look at our performance, it was dominant in many ways and a lot of it had just to do with our pace of work and the players who wanted to win the ball and double their players and just the will and passion of our entire group. "Chelsea bulldozed Arsenal and Fleming slipped seamlessly into the top three alongside Fran Kirby and Sam Kerr, with Pernille Harder free from an injury. "I definitely feel like I've improved since I came here," says Fleming. “The daily quality of training alone, the physicality and the quality in the league have definitely helped me to improve. I would say one big focus or one thing that I've worked on with our coaches is my offensive side of the game and the ability to make faster decisions, be more determined in attack and create more opportunities for the team. Before the final, which was played by all affiliated stadiums on the 100th anniversary of the football association's ban on women's football, Chelsea's manager Emma Hayes "read us an excerpt," says Fleming. Fleming credits the way Hayes speaks about the group and the language used as a contribution to it. We know we're good enough to beat Arsenal because we've done it before and many of us felt that this game that we lost in the Emirates earlier this season was something that we enjoyed Somehow slipped away and people were definitely really disappointed. ”Hayes also achieves what appeared to be an innate belief in bringing many leaders onto the pitch and empowering players to make decisions. "The special thing about our group is how easily we can adjust to a formation change or if something is not going well, to the game," says Fleming. “We have the executives and the heads on the team so that we can adapt and not let our entire game plan be mixed up. Whether the players need to adjust their position or something, it's just a huge weapon anywhere. ”Hayes is under pressure to give the players minutes - a problem she both loves and hates - and Fleming shows that she can Earned time on the pitch. Have your expectations changed after Olympic gold and a strong start to the season? “Maybe they've changed a bit,” says Fleming. “But I don't like to put pressure on myself when it comes to playing. I've learned to trust Emma's decision-making. I think she knows how to win games and I also have to appreciate the talent that is in our squad. Sometimes when you look at Fran, Sam and Pernille it is hard to argue against the fact that they are not playing. “For me, coming to Chelsea the most important thing I wanted was to be in a challenging environment and improve and I feel like I'm doing that. It's nice to see some of these improvements tangible, but I also see a lot of things that I still have to work on. I just want to get better and then the playing time and maybe some of Emma's trust will continue. ”Jessie Fleming is Barclays WSL Player of the Month for November.


The Champions League draw that never existed

Man United meant Lionel Messi versus Cristiano Ronaldo. But there was a problem ... (Author: Gardener)

The Champions LeagueIn an unusual twist, UEFA had to announce on Monday that the Champions League round of 16 will have to be redrawn after the first attempt was marred by technical problems. In an unusual twist, UEFA had to announce on Monday that the Champions League round of 16 will have to be redrawn after the first attempt was marred by technical problems. The first draw, scheduled for 12:00 noon CET / 6:00 a.m. ET, caused administrative chaos as the software used to inform UEFA officials about eligible teams during the live event at the home of the European Football Association didn't work properly in Switzerland. This resulted in a mistake as the Manchester United ball was accidentally left out of the pot during the draw to find Atletico Madrid's opponent. Problems arose when Villarreal was pulled from runners-up and paired with United. Under UEFA rules, two teams that have faced each other in the group stage cannot meet in the first knockout round. As a result, UEFA Deputy General Secretary Giorgio Marchetti ordered a new draw for Villarreal's opponents, with Manchester City coming out of the pot for the second time. Atletico Madrid speak to UEFA about the UCL draw. UEFA is currently discussing whether the draw can take place in its current form. The decision on whether to draw again within an hour is the word.— Alex Shaw (@AlexShawESPN) December 13, 2021 United's ball then appeared to be accidentally excluded from the pot for the next draw as Atletico Madrid select their opponents from a reduced pool let what United did not contain, although the two clubs are perfectly entitled to compete against each other. To make matters worse, Liverpool have been added to the pot to potentially face Atletico, despite the fact that both teams face each other in the group stage. UEFA has never drawn because everything is computer programmed. The computer tells who is authorized to compete against each team. But the computer said Villarreal could play against anyone, including Man United and Real Madrid. And no one noticed that it wasn't programmed properly ... - Dale Johnson (@DaleJohnsonESPN) December 13, 2021 United then played against Paris Saint-Germain, causing great excitement across the football world as Cristiano Ronaldo lost his head - to-head against the old opponent Lionel Messi in the Champions League again. THE GOATS AGAIN IN THE CHAMPIONS LEAGUE! 🐐🍿— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) December 13, 2021 The draw was then completed as planned and for a brief moment these were the round of 16 games of the 2021-22 Champions League season. The Champions League round of 16 draw has been decided 🏆— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) December 13, 2021 However, when it was found that a mistake had been made, complaints were submitted to UEFA and finally to the governing body to cancel the first iteration of the draw, null and void it and push for a fresh start. After a technical problem with the software of an external service provider instructing the officials as to which teams are eligible to play against each other, the draw for the round of 16 of the UEFA Champions League resulted in a material error. - UEFA (@UEFA) December 13th 2021 After United's box-office fight with PSG and the prospect of a clash between Ronaldo and Messi had been wiped off the slate, many football fans mourned what could have been. I can't believe they'll repeat the draw. Just when we * finally * wanted to find out which of Messi and Ronaldo was better. - Tom Williams (@tomwfootball) December 13, 2021 Max Verstappen was ultimately world champion in the last race of the season ahead of Lewis Hamilton, but only after the FIA ​​with intervened in a questionable appeal that made the final lap of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix essentially a one-lap race for the title. The Champions League will be drawn again. No good days for sports authorities.— Gary Lineker 💙 (@GaryLineker) December 13, 2021 A real hold-my-beer moment from UEFA— Si Lloyd (@ SmnLlyd5) December 13, 2021 Could be worse: If this is Formula 1 would we would have to play the group stage again— Sam Wallace (@SamWallaceTel) December 13, 2021 UEFA couldn't even handle the fact that F1 was in the spotlight for 24 hours so had to they create a bureaucracy their own mess 😅 How can you get a draw wrong ?! - Ronan Mullen (@RonanReigns) December 13, 2021 As expected, the flawed Champions League draw brought a wave of consternation among many jaded viewers. I'm not saying UEFA have draw issues today, but Arsenal have just been matched with Flamengo in the Europa League.— Ian Doyle (@IanDoyleSport) December 13, 2021 Some were skeptical and said so given the epic scale of one of the games made ahead At the first draw, it might be in UEFA's interest to achieve a similar result on the second attempt. #MUFC pulls out PSG again at 2 p.m., just for clarification - Peter Hall (@ PeteHall86) December 13, 2021 Spartak Moscow has meanwhile asked UEFA in an unusual way to exclude its ball from the Europa League draw so that it doesn't get anything finds forced to play against Erling Haaland and Borussia Dortmund. 🤔 @UEFA, can you please put our ball aside if you draw against Borussia Dortmund in the round of 16? - FC Spartak Moscow (@fcsm_eng) December 13, 2021 Real Madrid midfielder Toni Kroos just decided to pretend the whole thing wasn't happening and ironically asked fans about their tie predictions. Any prediction for the draw? - Toni Kroos (@ToniKroos) December 13, 2021 The re-draw finally took place three hours after the original draw, after the Europa League and Europa Conference League were played, with the latter competition having its own software malfunction. UEFA has further technical problems with the draw for the play-offs for the Europa Conference League. "It's a technical problem with the software," says Marchetti. At least they're consistent - Simon Bajkowski (@spbajko) December 13, 2021 Reigning European champions Chelsea had to wait and see who their new opponents would be in defending their titles - just so that it's the same as the team they were drawn against the first time. For the record, here is the FINAL AND FINAL draw for the Champions League round of 16: Manchester City Atletico Madrid v Manchester United Real Madrid


Manchester United postponed Brentford as Premier League announces record positive Covid tests

Tuesday's Premier League game between Brentford and Manchester United has been postponed due to a Covid-19 outbreak within the United roster as the league struggles with a surge in cases. (Author: Gardener)

Premier LeagueThe Brentford game against Manchester United was postponed due to the high number of positive Covid cases in the United camp. Tuesday's Premier League game between Brentford and Manchester United has been postponed due to a Covid-19 outbreak within the United roster as the league struggles with a surge in cases. The postponement of the game follows the announcement by the Premier League on Monday of 42 new positive Covid-19 tests at a record high between Jan. Conte has now seen that his team's last two games were not continued. A league statement announced a return to its "emergency response procedures," which include protocols on wearing face-coverings indoors, maintaining social distancing, limiting treatment time, and increasing lateral flow and PCR testing of players and staff . "We will continue to work closely with the government, local authorities and support groups while responding to future changes in national or local guidelines," said the Premier League. United’s proposed hosting in Brentford was called into question on Monday afternoon after visitors announced the 24-hour closure of their Carrington training complex due to a string of positive Covid-19 cases among first-team employees and players. A statement from United said that those who tested positive were isolating themselves and that the club was discussing the continuation of the game at Brentford with the Premier League. The league later confirmed that the game would be postponed and rearranged at a later date "as directed by medical advisors due to the exceptional circumstances" of the United Covid-19 outbreak. Both clubs issued statements of the postponement acknowledging the "inconvenience" caused to the fans, with United confirming that they had requested the game to be reorganized. "We appreciate that there will be many fans who are inconvenienced by the postponement of the game and we apologize for the inconvenience that was beyond our control," said Brentford's statement. "But we respect the Premier League's decision and recognize that the health and safety of the players and staff at both clubs must always come first." It's the second postponement in days as rising Covid-19 cases threaten to derail a hectic winter season in English football. Sunday's game between Brighton and Tottenham Hotspur was also postponed last Thursday due to a Covid-19 outbreak in the guest camp - with Spurs manager Antonio Conte announcing positive cases in eight players and five employees. The Spurs UEFA Europa Conference League game against Stade Rennais on Thursday did not take place due to the club's high number of cases. "A Spurs statement said:" We apologize to everyone at Stade Rennais and Brighton & Hove Albion as well as to your and our fans for the inconvenience this has caused. "We would also like to thank both clubs for their understanding during these challenging times Thank you. "." Conte confirmed the extent of the outbreak on Thursday, admitting he was "very upset" at the "strange and unbelievable" situation - Leicester City - on Thursday, with Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers expecting the Game continues. Rodgers was without multiple players in his team's games against Napoli and Newcastle last week. "I can't give the number of Covid cases. “Said Rodgers after his team beat Newcastle 4-0. Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard is another Premier League boss struggling with selection issues from Covid, though not to the same extent as Conte. Gerrard spoke to reporters yesterday before his team's trip to Norwich tonight and confirmed "some" positive cases among players. Gerrard also announced that the vaccination status of potential signings will be considered as part of the club's transfer strategy. "We're looking at everything so I'm sure it will come out," said Gerrard. Meanwhile, Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola said players and staff were encouraged by the club's medical team to receive the Covid-19 booster, citing the outbreaks in Spurs and Leicester. On Sunday, the UK raised its Covid-19 warning level and accelerated booster jabs in response. Prime Minister Boris Johnson set a new goal of offering a third vaccination to all adults by the end of December. "Absolutely, the doctors suggest they have to do it [get the booster]," Guardiola told reporters on Monday ahead of the City-Leeds game tonight. “I'm not worried that they might cancel the Premier League, I'm worried because the virus is here and people are suffering.


Man United, Bayern, Barca track Kamara

With his contract expiring in the summer, top European clubs are ready to move to Marseille's Boubacar Kamara. Transfer Talk is LIVE with the latest. (Author: Gardener)

BayernThe summer transfer window was unlike any other. And just because the window is closed until January doesn't mean the rumors are getting stuck. Manchester United, Newcastle United, Bayern Munich and Barcelona are interested in Marseille midfielder Boubacar Kamara, according to The Athletic. The 22-year-old, who can also act as a central defender, has a contract with Marseille that ends in summer 2022. This means that foreign clubs can negotiate a summer change with him free of charge. There is great interest in the French. Marseille haven't given up hope of his whereabouts as they could make another push to reach an agreement, but Kamara have already decided that he will leave as a free agent at the end of the season, the report added. In addition, Barcelona are known as strong admirers - especially since they would not have to pay a transfer fee in their financial difficulties. - ESPN FC 100: Ranking of the world's best players after position 22.28 GMT: AC Milan midfielder Franck Kessie is about to be eliminated from Serie A, reports Calciomercato. The Ivory Coast international is set to be out of contract this summer and talks have stalled despite talks on a new deal, moving the 24-year-olds closer to leaving the club in the future. 21.46 GMT: Benfica hope to revive interest in Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti, Mundo Deportivo say. While Barcelona are reportedly looking to leave the 28-year-old in the summer, Benfica have tried to sign him. A deal didn't go through, but the Portuguese club are now hoping to land him on the winter transfer market. 21.15 GMT: AS Roma are interested in Juventus midfielder Arthur who is struggling to penetrate the team after moving from Barcelona. According to reports from Calciomercato, Massimiliano Allegri is hoping to join the Brazilian international in January as he tries to shake up midfield at the Old Lady. Meanwhile, Jose Mourinho is hoping to add to his squad this winter, with his side finishing in sixth place. 20.42 GMT: According to the picture, FC Bayern Munich is interested in Borussia Dortmund and English midfielder Jude Bellingham. However, Dortmund should aim to keep the 18-year-old, who has been with the club since 2020 from the master club Birmingham City. 03/20 GMT: Real Madrid have emerged as favorites to use Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger, with the club reportedly having had positive talks with the player. The 28-year-old's current contract with Chelsea will expire this summer, but renewal talks are not going well, according to the Guardian. The report says the Germany international has turned down an initial contract proposal of £ 140,000 a week at the club and is aiming for closer to £ 200,000 a week for his next deal, whoever he signs it with. 19:28 GMT: According to ESPN Deportes and other media outlets, youngest League MX champion Jesus Angulo could soon leave Atlas to join Tigres. An agreement was reportedly reached between the two clubs to transfer the 23-year-old defender. 19.04 GMT: Barcelona will be forced to deploy winger Yusuf Demir in the next few months to avoid a clause in their loan deal, Sky Sports Germany reports. The youngster would reportedly trigger a clause on his loan deal stating that he would move to Barcelona permanently for € 10m if he played another game. However, if they wait until February to give the 18-year-old some playing time, the clause would still be triggered but it would delay the budget hit until summer 2022, giving Barca a bigger winter budget. 18.31 GMT: Talks between Internazionale and Croatian international Ivan Perisic have reportedly stalled, with the club now considering a move from Eintracht Frankfurt winger Filip Kostic. According to Calciomercato, the Nerazzurri Perisic are likely to lose in the summer as his current contract expires. 17:27 GMT: Barcelona President Joan Laporta had a meeting with Agent Mino Raiola about possible signings, including Paul Pogba, reports journalist Fabrizio Romano. The reporter says several names emerged, including Erling Haaland and Noussair Mazraoui, and Pogba. The club are reportedly looking to strengthen their squad amid a financial crisis and disappointing performances. 16:34 GMT: Pep Guardiola believes New York City FC striker Valentin Castellanos is ready to leave the MLS and take the next step in his career in Europe. The 23-year-old Castellanos finished the regular season on 19 goals before adding three in the play-offs as New York City celebrated their first ever MLS Cup triumph after beating the Portland Timbers on penalties. The Argentine has been linked with a move to the Premier League and Guardiola announced that he has spoken to City Football Group's scouting department about his future. "I think he's a guy who will take the next step in Europe," Guardiola said at a press conference on Monday. "From what I saw when the scouting department spoke to me, I know he's a quality player and ready to take the next step into Europe and we'll see where." 15.42 GMT: Frenkie de Jong's father says "Europe's top five clubs" have all asked about the Dutch midfielder but he doesn't see his son leaving Barcelona anytime soon. Barca's financial troubles have led to the departures of Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann this year but they may be forced to let more players go if they want to strengthen elsewhere. De Jong, 24, has sometimes been touted as a quick fix to the club's situation given the fee it would attract, but manager Xavi Hernandez recently declared him "not for sale" and the player's father cannot see him leave. either. "The weather is terrible there," John de Jong told AD when asked about a possible interest from Bayern Munich and Manchester United. "I know Barcelona need money and a big offer could help Frenkie, but I don't see it even though the top five European clubs have called all of them. De Jong joined Barca from Ajax in 2019 and had a deal worth around 70 million euros. " , turned down offers from Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City, clubs that along with Bayern and United have been re-associated with him in recent months. 14.46 GMT: Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta has claimed Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang "takes time". but refused to rule out the striker's sale in January. The Gunners said in a statement Tuesday that Aubameyang, 32, would no longer wear the armband after a "disciplinary problem" source ESPN James Olley told ESPN the striker is late returning from a sanctioned holiday. When asked if he would consider selling Aubameyang in January, Arteta gave a more ambiguous answer to the same question than last Friday when he claimed the Club have done this "never discussed" about it. "I can now say that we made this decision, unfortunately it is a really difficult decision and if I had to choose I would of course not like to sit here and talk about it, but we do had to do it, "said Arteta, who claims he communicated his decision to the Gabonese international of his decision in personal talks. Urged when Aubam eyang could get active again, Arteta added: “What I can tell you now is to make the decision that we made because he was really hurt and it is still like that and he needs a little time to to heal. In response to how Aubameyang took the news, Arteta pointedly replied, "He had to accept the decision." 13:54 GMT: The result of the Champions League round of 16 draw, in which Real Madrid met against Paris Saint-Germain, will be the plans of the Spanish giant regarding the timing of Kylian Mbappe's contract, reports AS. Mbappe hasn't signed a new deal with Paris Saint-Germain and with his current deal ending next summer, the French international will be able to negotiate with his next club in January. However, Los Blancos reportedly intend to keep negotiations with Mbappe on hold until after March 9, when the second leg between the teams is played at Madrid's Santiago Bernabeu - until then out of respect for PSG. Mbappe, 22, wanted to join Madrid last summer but PSG turned down all offers. The striker, who has scored 13 goals and assisted 12 more in 23 games in all competitions so far this season, is reportedly set to sign a deal with Madrid until June 2028 Spurs of 'Spider-Man' star Holland 01-13 GMT: Aston Villa- Manager Steven Gerrard has said the club may be reluctant to sign a new player next month if they are not vaccinated against COVID-19. This week, the Premier League announced that 42 club players and staff tested positive over the past week while the Brentford-Manchester United game was postponed on Tuesday due to an outbreak of cases at United. But I don't think it's right to comment on whether or not I would [sign the player] in this situation [if they were unvaccinated]. "09/12 GMT: Tottenham Hotspur are ready to listen to offers for Dele Alli In January, sources told ESPN's James Olley. Spurs boss Antonio Conte has hinted the 25-year-old isn't an important part of his plans for the second half of the season, sources told ESPN, with Conte willing to let him in to revive his career elsewhere Significantly, chairman Daniel Levy is also ready to soften his stance after blocking several Paris Saint-Germain attempts to loan the midfielder last summer. Sources have told ESPN that Alli was open to joining Ligue 1, with the prospect of a reunion with former Tottenham head coach Mauricio Pochettino at Parc des Princes 11.33 GMT: The January transfer window is getting closer and clubs are starting to think seriously about which players they want to strengthen uads. Traditionally, the off-season is not a time for big moves, but the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on football finances is unpredictable and there was a lot of spending in the summer window despite the situation. Here we break down some of the players on the radar of some of Europe's biggest clubs. 10.41 GMT: Barcelona have announced that Sergio Agüero will hold a press conference on Wednesday to "explain his future" while suffering from heart disease. Various reports suggest that Aguero, who joined Barca on a free transfer from Manchester City in the summer, will confirm his retirement from the game. Barca president Joan Laporta will appear alongside the Argentine striker at the event at Camp Nou. The 33-year-old Aguero made just five appearances for Barca this season before being sent off after chest pain in the October draw with Alaves. This three-month period runs until the end of January, but in recent weeks there has been increasing speculation that Aguero would have to hang up his boots. Sources told ESPN back in November that the forward would follow doctors' orders and be in no hurry to make a decision about his future. Agüero took the stage with Independiente in his homeland before moving to Atletico Madrid. He later spent a decade at City, becoming the English club's record scorer before joining Barca after his contract expired last June. 09.47 GMT: Sporting CP are already working on a plan to keep Spanish defender Pedro Porro at the Portuguese club for the long term, according to A Bola. Porro, 22, has been standout since joining Sporting from Manchester City on a two-year loan deal in August 2020. Sporting are hoping to make Porro's move permanent by paying City the agreed € 8.5million this summer. Porro has already convinced Sporting executives of its worth by scoring four goals in 37 games and preparing four more to help Sporting win the championship last season. The Spanish international, who is under contract with City until 2024, has scored three goals in 18 games this season. After signing, Sporting are ready to offer Porro, who is a target for Real Madrid and Atletico, an upgraded three-year deal and a € 45million release clause. Porro moved to City from sister club Girona for £ 10.8million in the summer of 2019 but was immediately loaned to Real Valladolid. 08:52 GMT: Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira remains open to the prospect of keeping midfielder Conor Gallagher beyond the end of his season loan from Chelsea. The 21-year-old Gallagher has scored six goals so far this season, fielded another three in the Premier League, and was even called up late to the youngest English squad. After his eye-catching loon spell at West Bromwich Albion last season, Gallagher is establishing himself as one of the most promising young players in England, leading to speculation that he could be resumed next season or even be recalled at Stamford Bridge in January. "We don't think about what will happen in the future," said Vieira. We'll see what happens at the end of the season. "08:00 GMT: Manchester United interim coach Ralf Rangnick said striker Anthony Martial should have the courage to make a formal transfer request if he is leaving the club in January. Martial's agent Philippe Lamboley said on Friday that his client would be leaving Old Trafford in the next transfer window, but the news came as a surprise to Rangnick, who insists that Martial, 26, has not approached him or the club about his plans and I am not over-communicating the media and the press with the agents, "said Rangnick. If he really has the desire to move to another club, it should be the player who either informs the board of directors or me. I've never talked about a player through the media or about agents. "- Erling Haaland will hold a perspective discussion with Borussia Dortmund about his future, writes the kicker. The Norwegian international's contract contains a release clause that is to be triggered in the summer, while Dortmund hopes he will stay beyond that. With many of the biggest clubs in the world hoping to sign the striker, there will be a discussion over what happens next in the coming weeks - although it may take longer to reach a final decision - Sergio Aguero will announce his resignation at a press conference on Wednesday December 15, according to Diario Sport and other media outlets, after the Argentine was forced off the pitch in a game against Alaves for dizziness and is now due to a heart condition as Player resign.- The Chicago Fire announced that striker Ignacio Aliseda has joined FC Lugano from de r Swiss Super League changes and will do so when the European transfer window opens on January 1st. The Argentine joined Fire in February 2020 and played 43 games in two seasons. His departure will free up a designated player seat. - The contract talks between AC Milan and Alessio Romagnoli are going well, the club is offering 3.5 million euros per season, reports Calciomercato. New meetings are planned with the defender's agent, Mino Raiola, while the 26-year-old could change the club's plans to bring on other center-backs. - Zenit St. Petersburg has offered Sardar Azmoun a contract extension so as not to lose him as a free agent if his current contract ends in the summer, tweeted Nicolo Schira, but the 26-year-old has attracted attention elsewhere. Lyon have been in advanced talks since October and have offered the Iranian international a four-year contract, Bayer Leverkusen are also showing interest.