Santi Cazorla Returns to Spain Squad for Euro 2020 Qualifiers After 4-Year Absence

Villarreal midfielder Santi Cazorla has been named in Spain’s 23-man squad for their upcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers against the Faroe Islands and Sweden.

The 34-year-old has not featured for his country since November 2015, when he faced England in a friendly match. However, he has enjoyed an impressive season with Villarreal and is now set to return to the international fold.


The Spanish national team confirmed the call-up on ?Twitter, bringing an end to ?Cazorla’s lengthy absence from the team.

The former ?Arsenal star has racked up seven goals and 11 assists in all competitions this season, despite Villarreal struggling towards the bottom of the ?La Liga table.

?Manchester United goalkeeper ?David de Gea retains his place in the squad, and he will compete with ?Chelsea star Kepa Arrizabalaga and Real Betis’ Pau Lopez for a place on Luis Enrique’s team sheet.

Real Sociedad duo Diego Llorente and Mikel Oyarzabal have both caught the eye and played their way into Enrique’s squad, whilst Dani Carvajal and Iago Aspas have both returned from injury.

?Isco has also forced his way back into the squad, having been left out for his side’s previous meetings with Norway and Malta.

With such a large pool of talent to choose from, there are plenty of notable absentees. Enrique has continued to overlook ?Atletico Madrid trio ?Diego Costa, Saul Niguez and Koke, whilst the Chelsea pairing of ?Cesar Azpilicueta and ?Marcos Alonso have both missed out.

Francisco Roman Alarcon alias Isco

Spain will travel to the Faroe Islands on 7th June, before hosting Sweden on 10th June, as they look to continue their perfect start to qualification


Goalkeepers: David de Gea, Pau Lopez, Kepa Arrizabalaga.

Defenders: Jordi Alba, Sergio Ramos, Inigo Martinez, Diego Llorente, Mario Hermoso,  Dani Carvajal, Jose Gaya, Sergi Roberto.

Midfielders: Santi Cazorla, Rodri, Isco, Dani Parejo, Jesus Navas, Fabian Ruiz, Sergio Busquets.

Forward: Rodrigo Moreno, Alvaro Morata, Iago Aspas, Mikel Oyarzabal, Marco Asensio.

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Luka Jovic ‘Completes’ £52.4m Move to Real Madrid From ?Eintracht Frankfurt

?Eintracht Frankfurt striker Luka Jovic has reportedly completed his anticipated switch to Real Madrid, with Los Blancos paying £52.4m for the Serbian, tying him down to a five-year deal, though some reports have denied an agreement has been reached.

Jovic has been a revelation for the Bundesliga outfit this season, netting 27 goals across competitions and providing seven assists. Alongside Chelsea forward Olivier Giroud, he is the joint-top scorer in the Europa League this season, with his 10 goals helping Frankfurt to the semi-finals, where they were ultimately knocked out by the Blues.

Luka Jovic,Mijat Gacinovic

The 21-year-old has long been linked with a move to the Spanish capital this summer, and according to ?Sky Sports the deal has now been completed. 

The reports explained: “Eintracht Frankfurt striker Luka Jovic has completed a £52.4m (€60m) move to Real Madrid, Sky Sports News understands.

“The 21-year-old Serbia international has signed a five-year contract with the Spanish giants, which will earn him £43.7million (€50m) in total, or £8.7million a year.”

Jovic joined the German side from Benfica on an initial two-year loan, but Adi Hutter’s side triggered a clause in that contract to sign the player for a fee understood to be in the region of just €7m back in April. 

All in all, he scored 36 goals in 74 appearances for the Eagles, and will join ?Real as one of Europe’s hottest strikers. The deal Jovic penned with Frankfurt did in fact extend his deal till June 2023, but it did not include the considerable salary he has been afforded by Zinedine Zidane’s side.

However, according to reports in Bild, as relayed by Ronan Murphy on ?Twitter, the deal has not been agreed, with Frankfurt apparently holding out for something closer to €60-70m. As Murphy explained: “Bild have denied an agreement between Real Madrid and Eintracht Frankfurt for Luka Jovic, saying Madrid offered €50m but Eintracht want €60-70m.”

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Real Madrid Named ‘Most Valuable Football Brand’ as Six Premier League Clubs Make Top 10

?It’s been a long time coming, but Real Madrid fans finally have something to celebrate this season, as they have retaken their place as the most valuable brand in world football. 

The news comes from Brand Finance, the world’s leading independent brand valuation consultancy, who every year releases its Football 50 – taking into consideration income and success on the field to establish the 50 most valuable football clubs in the world. 

Here, we’ve had a look at the top ten, featuring six representatives from the Premier League. 


10. Tottenham Hotspur: $758m

Tottenham Hotspur v Everton FC - Premier League

?Tottenham will face Liverpool in the Champions League final next month and maintain their place in tenth, but notably see their value jump by 20% to $758m.

They were the only club on the list not to venture into the transfer market over the last 12 months, so this will likely play a part in their solid financial performance, alongside their increased standing in the European game. 

They have also qualified for the Champions League for the fourth year running, so will likely only improve in the years to come. 


9. Arsenal: $885m

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang,Matteo Guendouzi

?The Gunners have dropped one place since last year to ninth but their drop in value of just 0.8% to $885m won’t exactly be a huge concern considering the transitional period the club is in at present. 

They are one of three English sides to see a marginal dip in their valuation over the last year, but should they emerge victorious in next month’s Europa League final, they could see their standing rocket in 2020. 


8. Paris Saint-Germain: $914m

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PSG continue to falter in Europe, this year throwing a two-goal lead against ?Manchester United in the last 16, but it seems their persistent domestic dominance nonetheless continues to reflect positively on their valuation.

Like Spurs, they’ve seen a sizeable increase in value, and are the second most improved side in the top ten, up by 21% since last year’s showing. They’ve leapfrogged Arsenal into eighth, and commercially at least, they seem to be a team very much on the up.


7. Chelsea: $968m

Chelsea v Eintracht Frankfurt - UEFA Europa League Semi Final : Second Leg


Our third and final London entrant, Chelsea have seen their value drop by around 2% this time around, but maintain their place in seventh without too much fuss. 

They remain one of the Premier League’s most valuable sides despite enduring an indifferent season on the pitch, though will return to the Champions League next year and have a Europa League final on the agenda, so things aren’t all bad. 


6. Liverpool: $1.19bn

Sadio Mane,Jordan Henderson

You would be forgiven for expecting to see ?Liverpool rank a bit higher on the list, but it is worth remembering that they are a relative newcomer among the modern commercial heavyweights. 

They have enjoyed a strong year on all fronts, and once again a Premier League title challenger with a second successive Champions League final on the horizon, their value has shot up by exactly 20% to take them over the $1bn barrier for the first time. They have, however, remained in 6th. 


5. Manchester City: $1.26bn

Ilkay Gundogan,Kyle Walker,Riyad Mahrez

Pep Guardiola’s City have emerged as the dominant force in English football, winning the title at a canter last season and then retaining it despite formidable opposition from Liverpool last week. That has reflected in their commercial showing, as they have also just about kept ahead of the Reds in the valuation stakes.

They’ve seen a 14% increase, though have failed to climb the table any since last year. 


4. Bayern Munich: $1.31bn

Leon Goretzka,Robert Lewandowski,Kingsley Coman

One of European football’s super-heavyweights, you expect to see Bayern near the top, so there are no surprises here. They will retain the Bundesliga yet again if they manage a point against Eintracht Frankfurt this weekend, and remain the fourth most valuable club in the world.

Like most clubs on the list, they’ve seen a pretty decent rise in their standing, up by 13%, but fall just short of…


3. Barcelona: $1.39bn

FBL-ESP-LIGA-BARCELONA-GETAFE

It’s been a disastrous season for Barcelona. I mean, they’re only 11 points clear at the top of La Liga, and haven’t even won the Copa del Rey yet ahead of their final with Valencia next month. What a shambles.

That’s the perception after their Champions League quarter-final capitulation against Liverpool, at least, but their results here leave little to complain about. They consolidate third place, with a rise of 12%, and are showing no signs of moving. 


2. Manchester United: $1.47bn

FBL-ENG-PR-MAN UTD-WATFORD

United have taken a bit of a battering on all fronts over the last few years, having been left behind by Europe’s elite due to their outdated infrastructure. That’s likely to be amended in the summer with the introduction of a sporting director, but for now, it reflects pretty badly on their commercial performance.

They’ve seen a drop by as much as 6% in their valuation, and have been knocked off top spot. With no Champions League football next season, they are likely to have some rebuilding job on their hands in the years to come.


1. Real Madrid: $1.65bn

FBL-ESP-LIGA-REAL SOCIEDAD-REAL MADRID

There’s no surprise to see Real Madrid on top here, as they remain one of the biggest clubs in the world despite their poor recent performances, but they have admirably improved by as much as 27%, clearly feeling the benefits of that third successive Champions League win.

They’ve retaken top spot for the first time since 2010, and are once again the most valuable club in the world. How that will look after they sign 250 new players this summer, however, remains to be seen.

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Real Madrid Planning to Offload 14 First-Team Players as Part of Major Overhaul This Summer

?Real Madrid stars Gareth Bale, James Rodríguez and Keylor Navas have been included in a list of players the club will look to sell at the end of the season.

There are plans for a major overhaul at the Santiago Bernabéu this summer following the re-appointment of Zinedine Zidane as manager.

The club have already wrapped up deals for Brazilian duo Rodrygo and Éder Militão, Spanish outlet Marca have released a list of players who will be asked to find new clubs and leave Real Madrid’s squad this summer.

FBL-ESP-LIGA-REALMADRID-TRAINING

From back to front, goalkeeper Navas is their most high profile player who will be available, while defenders Sergio Reguilón, Jesús Vallejo and Theo Hernández have also been put up for sale by the club.

Returning midfielders Rodríguez and Mateo Kova?i? – on loan at Bayern Munich and Chelsea respectively –  are considered surplus to requirements, as well as the likes of Dani Ceballos, Martin Ødegaard, Marcos Llorente and Óscar Rodríguez.

Both Isco and former Manchester City winger Brahim Díaz could also be available to sign heading into the new season, although the latter will most likely only be available in a season-long loan deal.

In attack, Lucas Vázquez and Mariano Díaz are also stuck in limbo between being part of Zidane’s side or being free to look for a new club.

But the same can’t be said for Bale, who along with strikers Borja Mayoral and Raúl de Tomás, has been told that he’s not wanted at the Santiago Bernabéu.


Real Madrid’s Wales international forward will have the chance to have a farewell in the Spanish capital this weekend when Los Blancos host Real Betis, with the club hopeful of collecting three points to break the 70-point barrier.

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Luka Jovic to Sign Real Madrid Contract ‘Next Week’ After Bundesliga Season Concludes

Luka Jovic is to finalise a deal to join Real Madrid after the on-loan Eintracht Frankfurt? striker ends his domestic Bundesliga season.

The Serbian forward’s future has been the centre of intense speculation in recent months, with Madrid repeatedly among those clubs in conversation with a player who has been in imperious form this season.

Jovic has netted 25 goals in all competitions, in what is the final season of his two-year loan deal from parent club Benfica.

Luka Jovic

With the season set to draw to a close for both the ?Bundesliga and ?La Liga outfits this weekend, ?AS claim that Los Blancos will ‘finalise’ the deal after the weekend with an agreement ‘in place’ for Jovic to join the Spanish giants.

?Madrid are required to cough up a fee in the region of €60m for the prolific striker, however, giving the spending power of Zinedine Zidane’s men, this is not expected to be a problem.

After Mariano’s disappointing return to the club after  a spell at Lyon, Karim Benzema continues to remain the club’s only reliable frontman, with Jovic expected to provide serious competition for the 31-year-old. 

Ten years his senior, AS state that the 21-year-old is the ‘perfect’ replacement for the Frenchman, and will eventually take over the mantle as leading striker.


Eintracht’s domestic season is not done and dusted yet, with the German side fighting to earn a top four spot – something that is more than achievable with just one match remaining. Die Adler are currently sixth, but just one point off fourth place Borussia Mönchengladbach ahead of their away trip to ?Bayern Munich.

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