Luka Jovic Says He Was ‘Born With’ Ability to Make it at Real Madrid & Cites Ronaldo as His Hero

Luka Jovic has expressed confidence in his ability to make the cut at Real Madrid, saying that he was born with the ability to make it at the highest level. 

The Serbian joins Real after a remarkable two-season spell with Eintracht Frankfurt, in which he scored 36 goals in 75 appearances, but as recently as two years ago, he was an outcast with Benfica after a failed move from Red Star Belgrade.

The 21-year-old, however, says he doubted his ability to rebuild his career and take his game to new heights. He feels that it was inevitable given his natural ability to find the back of the net, and traces it back to his childhood obsession with Brazil legend Ronaldo. 

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“Sometimes I think I was just born with it,” he said in his ?Players Tribune column. “Everyone in this life has certain talents, and I think mine is scoring goals.

“I don’t know how I ended up playing as a striker, but as far back as I can remember I’ve always been obsessed with scoring. 

“When I was a child, I used to have these two VHS tapes of all the goals from every single World Cup up to 2006, I think. I remember being mesmerised by Roger Milla from Cameroon at the ’90 World Cup, and of course Ronaldo – the original Ronaldo. 

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“I was obsessed with how he did that step-over dribble against goalkeepers. I remember it being so fast, like a magician’s trick, and I would practice how to do it at home. 

“Ronaldo would play football with such ease, almost as if he was at 30%, and I thought it was incredible. His style and confidence left a mark on me.”

He went on: “Things have happened very fast for me. A few years ago, I was just dreaming of playing for Red Star [Belgrade].

“To play in a ?Europa League semifinal, to play in a World Cup, and now to move to ?Real Madrid, it is incredible. But I think the most important thing for a striker is confidence. I’ve never doubted my worth. 

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“I just feel like I have a quality that I was born with, and I will never doubt it.”

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Real Madrid Keen to Keep Dani Ceballos at Bernabeu Despite Interest From Liverpool, Arsenal & Spurs

?Real Madrid have changed their stance on midfielder Dani Ceballos and are now eager to have him stay in the Spanish capital, despite interest from Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham.

Los Blancos were unconcerned by the prospect of losing the 22-year-old as they look to recoup some of their enormous outgoings from this summer, the club spending north of £300m thus far. 

However, they were impressed by his excellent performances for the Spain Under-21 side at the European Championships in June, with Ceballos helping his nation win the competition.

Dani Ceballos

Real now view the youngster as a star of the future and believe another season at the Bernabeu could see him develop into a guaranteed starter, according to Marca.

Unai Emery’s team have reportedly made a ?loan offer for Ceballos, which would also suit ?Madrid. Though they must earn within £100m of what they spend to meet Financial Fair Play regulations, the latter are also aware that the player possesses huge potential.

As a result, the giants of ?La Liga are keen to have a means of bringing him back to the club, whether that be via a buy-back clause or simply by lending him to the ?Gunners on a temporary basis.

?Liverpool are yet to make a bid for Ceballos, whilst ?Tottenham are likewise weighing up a move, though the Lillywhites appear to be prioritising a deal for Giovani Lo Celso of Real Betis.

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Madrid may well be hoping that the Spanish international remains, but his relationship with returning coach Zinedine Zidane may dash the chances of that.

There is very little trust between the Frenchman and Ceballos, who first worked together during the 2017/18 campaign in which Real won their third successive ?Champions League.

A final decision will be made when the Betis academy graduate comes back for pre-season, with many of his teammates already back on the training following a rare summer off.

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Iker Casillas to Join Porto Backroom Staff as He Continues Recovery From Heart Attack

?Iker Casillas has confirmed that he will take up a role as a director at Porto, as he continues his recovery from a heart attack.

After being hospitalised in May, Casillas recently returned to pre-season training with Porto, although he was still expected to take plenty of rest until he has fully recovered from the serious health scare.

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Speaking to ?Porto Canal, Casillas revealed that he intends to work closely with the club during his recovery.

He said: “I’m going to do something different than I usually did, which was to be on the pitch. I’ll try to make the connection between the squad and the club officials. 

“The manager talked to me last season when my situation happened and he told me that he wanted me to stay with them, close to the players, near the younger players, because there would be a lot of changes. I will try to do my best to help my teammates.

“We will prepare to do as well as possible at the beginning of the season. We already have several weeks of work but there are still a couple of weeks left until the first official matches. 

“May we all have a great season together so that we can win the championship, the cups and do as well as possible in Europe.”

There was no mention of retirement for the former ?Real Madrid star, who clearly intends to come back and fight for his place in the first team once he feels physically able to do so.

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In Casillas’ absence, Vana Alves will likely continue in goal, whilst there could be chances for Joao Costa or 19-year-old Diogo Costa, who has enjoyed a number of impressive seasons as part of Porto’s academy sides.

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Eden Hazard Chooses Number 23 Real Madrid Shirt as Tribute to Basketball Legends

?Eden Hazard has requested to wear number 23 on his Real Madrid shirt, as a sign of his love for NBA icons Michael Jordan and LeBron James.

His preferred number 10 is currently being worn by Luka Modric, whilst number seven is also taken up by Mariano Diaz, so after being presented to fans without a number on his shirt, Hazard was forced to come up with another set of digits to wear.

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Fortunately, according to ?Marca, this was not a hard decision for ?Hazard to make, as he specifically requested to wear the number 23 on his new shirt.

He chose that number due to his love for basketball. 23 has an iconic status in the NBA, largely thanks to Michael Jordan’s rise to prominence with the Chicago Bulls during the 1980s and 1990s.

More recently, Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James has also worn number 23, including during his time with the Cleveland Cavaliers earlier in his career.


Back in the football world, ?Real’s number 23 is synonymous with David Beckham, who enjoyed a number of successful years with 23 on his back between 2003 and 2007. Since then, it has been worn by ?Isco and Sergio Reguilon, but Hazard is ready to become the next player to sport the number.

He was heavily rumoured to take the number seven shirt but, with Mariano’s determination to stay and fight for his place at the Santiago Bernabeu, Hazard has opted to choose another number.

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With 23 on his back, Hazard will be eager to replicate the success of both Jordan and James during his time with Los Blancos, who will call on Hazard to help them bounce back from a disappointing year last season.

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Manchester United Set Paul Pogba Transfer Deadline in Bid to Ward Off Interest From Real Madrid

?Manchester United are insistent that their valuation of Paul Pogba will be fixed this summer in a bid to ward off any potential interest from Real Madrid.

After a somewhat mixed 2018/19 campaign at Old Trafford, Pogba’s future has been thrown into question this summer, as a number of top European sides are said to be considering an approach for the 26-year-old.

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It has been widely reported that ?Manchester United’s original valuation of ?Pogba sits at around £150m and, according to ?The Mirror, the Red Devils will not be budging on that stance as they look to dissuade the likes ?Real Madrid who remain front runners to land the Frenchman’s signature.

What’s more, the report from The Mirror also claims that United will not be accepting any offers for Pogba once the English transfer window shuts on August 8.

La Liga clubs have until September 2 before their window shuts, but Ole Gunnar Solsjkaer has made it clear that United cannot consider selling Pogba if they do not have the opportunity to find an adequate replacement in the transfer market.

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While United’s original valuation may have initially sat at £150m, there is a chance that Real Madrid may have to cough up even more if they are to convince the Red Devils to part ways with Pogba.

?The Daily Mail have claimed that United have added £30m to their valuation, which means they will only be considering offers in the region of £180m. This decision is said to have come about as a result of the actions of Pogba’s agent Mino Raiola, who has been fuelling transfer rumours in an attempt to secure his client a big-money move.

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