Tuesday, 11 February 2014

C Barcelona head coach Gerardo Martino has described Lionel Messi's brace against Sevilla as the best way to answer his critics after helping his team to a 4-1 comfortable win on Sunday. The Catalans came from one-goal down after Sevilla went in front through a deflected strike by Alberto Moreno, but Messi inspired his side's revival as he assisted Alexis Sanchez to bundle home the equaliser before finishing off a fine counter-attack with a stunning half-volley just before half-time. The four-time FIFA World Player of the Year doubled his tally for the evening with another sweet finish from Andres Iniesta's pass 11 minutes after the break and Cesc Fabregas rounded off the scoring three minutes from time. Messi, who returned from a hamstring injury early this year has been struggling with goal scoring, but his coach Martino insisted that the Argentinean captain only needs time before to pick-up form in front of goal. "Those that do say something negative about him sometimes don't realise what they are doing is affecting his pride and, when you do that to the best player in the world, this is what happens." Barcelona coach Gerardo Martino "I always say the same with respect to Leo," Martino said. "I never run the risk of going over the top with him. "Those that do say something negative about him sometimes don't realise what they are doing is affecting his pride and, when you do that to the best player in the world, this is what happens," he was quoted as saying on FIFA.com

Chairman of the technical committee of the Nigeria Football Federation(NFF) Chris Green has stated that Super Eagles captain Joseph Yobo will be welcomed back on a return to the national team.

Yobo last played for the Super Eagles exactly a year ago,in the finals of the African Nations Cup and has not been given a call-up by the technical crew since then.

After putting in a good shift over the weekend for his new club Norwich,in their 0-0 draw against Manchester City,Yobo admitted that his focus is on a return to the Super Eagles.

“It’s been a while since I was involved with Nigeria. I haven’t played for the Super Eagles since we became the champions of Africa,” Yobo said after the game.

“I have spoken to (Stephen Keshi) and I think we are on equal basis now so I just have to perform well for Norwich City now and get my place back in the national team.

“I have been in the national team for so long. Captaining the national team gives me a special feeling and going to the World Cup for me will be an addition.

“I am here (in England) now and my priority now is Norwich City. Hopefully if I do well here, the national team (call up) will just be an addition. It will be a pleasure.” 

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