The Blaugrana are chasing both players as they look to fill the void left by Neymar's world-record €222m move to Paris Saint-Germain
Barcelona are "close" to completing the double signing of Philippe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele, general manager Pep Segura has claimed.
The Blaugrana have identified Coutinho, 25, and Dembele, 20, as their key targets as they look to fill the void left by Neymar's world-record €222 million move to Paris Saint-Germain.
Goal reported on Friday that Liverpool are not shifting from their position that Coutinho is not for sale, despite the Brazil international handing in a transfer request.
Liverpool have rejected two bids from Barcelona for Coutinho so far — the last of which totalled €100 million (£91.6m)
However, speaking in the aftermath of the Blaugrana's 5-1 aggregate defeat against Real Madrid in the Super Cup on Thursday, Segura claimed the star duo are edging closer towards Camp Nou.
Speaking to RAC1 after the match, he said: "Coutinho and Dembele are both close. We are hopeful that they will end up wearing the Barca shirt."
Segura then told TV 3: "Until deals are closed I can't say anything. We know we have to help the team and reinforce it and that's what we are doing."
It was reported in Spanish publication Sport on Monday that Barcelona had agreed a fee to sign Borussia Dortmund and France forward Dembele.
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Dembele is currently suspended by Dortmund on the back of the Bundesliga outfit rejecting a bid from Barcelona for his services.
Real Madrid beat Barcelona 2-0 at the Bernabeu to win the Spanish Super Cup 5-1 on aggregate.
The Spanish and European champions were dominant, even without the suspended Cristiano Ronaldo.
Marco Asensio, who also scored in the 3-1 first-leg win, gave them an early lead with an excellent 25-yard strike.
And Karim Benzema flicked up Marcelo's cross and turned defender Samuel Umtiti to fire home a second with Barcelona rarely looking like coming back.
Real eased off in the second half, with the cup practically wrapped up, and Barca improved slightly as a result, with Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez hitting the woodwork.Real looking good again
In less than two years in charge, Zinedine Zidane has led Real to two Champions Leagues, and the 2016-17 La Liga title. And on this performance, they are going to be hard to beat again.
The big story before the game was Ronaldo claiming he was persecuted after being banned for five games - for pushing the referee - after being sent off in the first leg.
Watching from the stands, he was not missed on the pitch, with Zidane also able to leave Isco and Gareth Bale on the bench with Sunday's La Liga opener against Valencia in mind.
But in 21-year-old attacking midfielder Asensio, they have one of Europe's most talented youngsters, and four minutes in, he fired home an excellent shot that left Marc-Andre ter Stegen rooted to the spot.
Benzema added a second with a great two-touch goal, and Real could slow things down after the break, knowing Barcelona did not look capable of scoring four unanswered goals.Are Barca in trouble?
Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde will be worried by what he has seen in his two competitive games in charge, having replaced Luis Enrique in the summer.
Having lost Neymar to Paris St-Germain for £200m in the summer, and with their moves for Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho and Borussia Dortmund's Ousmane Dembele unsuccessful so far, they lacked the quality of Barca teams of the past.
Thursday's expected £36m signing of 29-year-old Guangzhou Evergrande midfielder Paulinho will do little to appease unhappy fans.
With captain Andres Iniesta - now 33 - injured, Messi and Suarez both 30, and Suarez appearing to carry an injury for the final 10 minutes at the Bernabeu, Valverde has some serious problems to address just weeks into the job.
They were slightly better after the break - arguably because Real let them be - and Messi hit the bar after gliding past several defenders, with Suarez smashing the post with a header after Messi's shot was parried.
Barca get their league campaign under way on Sunday at home to Real Betis.
The club have rejected two bids from Barcelona, the last 100million euros (Â£90.9m), and a week ago issued a defiant statement insisting no offers would be considered and the player would remain at the club beyond the summer window.
Coutinho, who is currently sidelined with a back injury, immediately handed in a transfer request and after Wednesday night's Spanish Super Cup defeat to Real Madrid Pep Segura, Liverpool's former academy technical manager and now Barcelona's general manager, told Catalan television station TV3: "We are close to Coutinho and (Ousmane) Dembele.
"We are discussing their deals but do not know when it will be done." Asked if he expected them to sign, he added: "Yes, we expect it."
However, Klopp is adamant there have been no more developments and the two clubs are not even in discussions.
"I saw the game (Real-Barcelona) but I forgot to watch the interviews afterwards
Nothing to say from our side," said the Reds boss.
"I don't know why other people are saying what they are saying; I don't even know them - especially this guy, I've never even met him."
Asked whether there had been any subsequent talks Klopp added: "I am not sure I have to answer this only because we have said what we have to say, or the club said what we have to say.
"No news from me because no-one told me anything different since we spoke last time about this."
There have been suggestions Coutinho could agitate for a move by effectively going on strike but while he is still injured that is impossible.
Klopp was asked about the prospect of this and the Brazil international's general attitude.
"To be honest I have nothing to say about his attitude because since he has had a back problem he has obviously not been in training," he said.
"I asked the medical department how he is doing and there are no complaints so that is how it is
There is nothing bad to say about this.
"We are all not silly
We know it is a very difficult situation but there is nothing new to say.
"It is not always easy for me to say the 100 per cent truth - even though I don't like to like - but it is exactly how I say it because that is how it is in the moment, nothing else."
Source : PA
For completed deals, check our transfers page.Transfer news
Tottenham are not expected to entertain offers from Chelsea for full-back Danny Rose, 27, with the Blues ready to double his salary. (Evening Standard)
Daniel Levy, the Tottenham chairman, says midfielder Dele Alli, 21, would not be sold even for £150m, with Barcelona and Manchester City both interested. (Sun)
Barcelona have offered Liverpool £118m for 25-year-old Brazilian midfielder Philippe Coutinho. (Goal.com, in Spanish)
Barcelona are a step closer to securing a deal for Ousmane Dembele, 20, from Borussia Dortmund after the French forward was pictured packing his bags. (Daily Express)
Manchester City have made a £60m bid for Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez, with Real Madrid also interested in the 28-year-old Chilean. (Don Balon, via Daily Star)
Arsenal have already rejected a £45m bid from City for Sanchez, according to the player's agent Fernando Felicevich. (El Mercurio, via Daily Express)
Arsene Wenger, the Arsenal manager, has told Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, 24, that he wants him to stay for "a long time", with Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester United interested in the England winger. (Sun)
Wenger has admitted Sanchez and Oxlade-Chamberlain could both be sold this summer. (Daily Star)
A photo of Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk in London was posted on Instagram, only to be deleted soon after. The 26-year-old has been linked with Chelsea. (Daily Mirror)
Chelsea have not given up on signing Alex Sandro, 26, from Juventus, but are relying on the Brazilian left-back handing in a transfer request. (Evening Standard)
The Blues have made new £73m bid for Sandro, but Juventus have rejected offer. (Calciomercato, via Daily Star)
Everton Ronald Koeman says the club still has business to do before the transfer window closes, despite breaking their transfer record to sign £45m Gylfi Sigurdsson from Swansea. (Guardian)
Manchester United are ready to offer striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, 35, a coaching role as part of their move to re-sign him. (Independent)
Napoli have turned down a £55m bid from Barcelona for Italy's 26-year-old forward Lorenzo Insigne. (Gazzetta dello Sport, via IB Times)
Tottenham are lining up a £27m bid for Barcelona midfielder Denis Suarez. The 23-year-old Spaniard looked to be heading to Italian side Napoli. (Mundo Deportivo, via Metro)
Chelsea pulled out of a deal for Paris St-Germain's Polish midfielder Grzegorz Krychowia, 27, because PSG were too busy handling the arrival of Neymar from Barcelona. (L'Equipe, via Daily Express)
Brazilian defender Gabriel is set to join Valencia from Arsenal in a £10m deal. Gabriel, 26, joined the Gunners for £15m in January 2015. (Daily Mirror)
Watford are close to agreeing a season-long loan deal for Benfica's Peruvian 26-year-old winger Andre Carrillo. (Daily Mirror)
Leeds' New Zealand striker Chris Wood, 25, fears his club's demand of a £20m fee could stop a dream move to Burnley. (Daily Star)
Sheffield Wednesday will reject a second bid from Leicester City for forward George Hirst. The 18-year-old is the son of former England striker David Hirst. (Sheffield Star)
West Brom have no intention of selling Nacer Chadli, but are lining up a replacement in case Swansea make an offer too good to refuse for the 28-year-old Belgian winger. (Birmingham Mail)The back pagesMeanwhile...
Diego Costa could be sued by Chelsea if he ignores their requests to return to training. (Daily Telegraph)
Paris St-Germain's new world-record £198m signing Neymar has hired a UFC fighter as his personal bodyguard. (Sun)
Manchester United are among a number of clubs to have expressed reservations about a proposal to close the transfer window before the start of the season. (Daily Telegraph)
Aston Villa manager Steve Bruce has three games to save his job. (Daily Star)
Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has sent a letter (with marriage advice) to a lifelong Spurs fan before his wedding day. (Daily Mail)
Former England and Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has revealed on Twitter that he has been asked to go on reality television show 'I'm A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!' ...Could Jamie Carragher be a future King of the Jungle?Best of Wednesday's transfer news
Chelsea are lining up a £50m move to sign Tottenham Hotspur and England full-back Danny Rose, 27, after the player angered Spurs by criticising the club's transfer and wage policies. (Sun)
Spurs have reached an agreement with Paris St-Germain defender Serge Aurier, 24, who was a target for Manchester United. (L'Equipe, via IB Times)
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says the club will resist any bids for forward Alexis Sanchez, 28, and Oxlade-Chamberlain and expects them to honour the final year of their contracts. (Daily Mirror)
Gunners and England midfielder Jack Wilshere, 25, is wanted by Championship side Aston Villa. Wilshere has one year left on his Arsenal contract. (Daily Mail)
Liverpool want Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitic, 29, included in negotiations with the Spanish giants over playmaker Philippe Coutinho, 25. (Diario Gol, via Daily Express)
Manager Brendan Rodgers described Celtic's 5-0 Champions League play-off win over Astana as an "outstanding team performance" but insisted there is work to be done in the second leg.
Celtic travel to Kazakhstan on Sunday ahead of Tuesday's tie, with Rodgers adamant that he will select a team to win the match and not just see it out.
"We want to go there and win the game. We want to perform well," he said.
"It was a brilliant performance and now we need to get the job done there."
An own goal by Evgeni Postnikov and a Scott Sinclair strike established a 2-0 half-time lead for Celtic, and they added further goals through Sinclair again, James Forrest and an Igor Shitov own goal.
Celtic drew 1-1 away to Astana in the third qualifying round last season, before progressing by winning 2-1 at home, and the Kazakh champions have a strong home record.
Rodgers, though, was impressed with the way his players have grown and developed in European competition in the past 12 months,
"It's a great demonstration of the work the players have made and progressed over the course of the last season," the Celtic manager said.
"You could see the physical courage when I came, but having the ability to be composed, to have maturity, to handle the ball, and have the belief in a shape and understanding of the game, that was perfectly demonstrated tonight.
"It was an outstanding team performance, creativity, pressing, really good structure to the team. We scored five goals and missed one or two chances. To do that at this level of competition for a Scottish team, I was really proud of the team.
"We're in a better place [than last season] but we understand we have to finish the job off.Leigh Griffiths knocks in Celtic's fifth goal, deflected into the net by Igor Shitov (number four)
"The players deserve a huge amount of credit, they managed the game very well. We've made a really good start and it's another game when we haven't conceded.
"We'll pick a team to win the game [next week]. I've got trust in all the players, they're very clear in how we play."
Rodgers confirmed that midfielder Stuart Armstrong is likely to sign a contract extension "within 24 to 48 hours" and added that Tom Rogic appeared to have recovered from a second-half head knock that required him to leave the field.
"Tom is fine," Rodgers said. "He was smiling at the end.
"Stuart, hopefully imminently, he will agree an extension to his deal. Hopefully that will be announced in the next 24, 48 hours, which will be brilliant for us.
"I have a huge admiration for him, this is the place for him to develop and he's a vital member of our squad."
Potent going forward, Jurgen Klopp's side have looked highly suspect at the back during a frenetic opening week to the new campaign.
Saturday's 3-3 draw at Watford was followed by another fraught contest against Hoffenheim at the Rhein-Neckar-Arena on Tuesday night.
Liverpool returned home with a precious 2-1 lead from the first leg of their Champions League play-off but it was far from convincing.
Mignolet produced an heroic display as he kept out Andrej Kramaric's early penalty and made a string of fine saves to spare the Reds' blushes.
The Belgium international, who was repeatedly left exposed, is convinced that Liverpool can tighten up at the back without compromising their threat at the other end.
“We can only play one way and that is forward,” Mignolet said.Read More Hoffenheim 1-2 Liverpool
“We know that we can always score. We have so much style up front.
“We have so much talent in the squad that we have to use it. We have the qualities and our natural game will be attacking.
“But we know we have to fill that in with a really defensive spirit. We know that is where we have to improve.
“We are not blind. Everybody knows it in the dressing room, but there is no point throwing everything away.
“A natural footballing side that goes forward, you cannot change that, but we know we have to mix that in with a good defensive, aggressive spirit to make sure they don’t score the goals.”Stefano Okaka of Watford Scores the opener (Image: Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)
Liverpool may have ridden their luck in Germany but Mignolet believes the significance of inflicting Hoffenheim's first home defeat for 15 months shouldn't be overlooked.
The Reds will go into next Wednesday's second leg at Anfield in control of the tie as they look to secure their passage to the group stage.
“We would have taken that before the game so we are pleased,” Mignolet said.
“The first half wasn’t easy for us but we scored our goal and we could have made it a bit easier.
“We take the result as it is. Hoffenheim showed that they are a really good side and we knew they were not going to be easy to play against.
“The outside world probably thought it was going to be easy for us but that is never the case in a Champions League game. We have the result now, the first leg is gone and we will try and see it out at Anfield.
“If we score one at Anfield it will be very difficult for them.”Simon Mignolet saves a penalty during Hoffenheim v Liverpool (Image: Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)
Mignolet, one of only three survivors from the last Liverpool side to grace the Champions League three years ago, showed why he's beaten off competition from Loris Karius and Danny Ward to continue as the club's No 1 this term.
He was only denied a clean sheet when substitute Mark Uth fired home to halve the deficit three minutes from time.
“I helped the team but that's my job,” he said.
“The first half it was difficult for us as they created chances. I made a save with my legs after the penalty but that was a big moment.
“All credit again to the analysts who gave me all the correct information (for the penalty).
“We were nearly there. It was unfortunate to concede in the last couple of minutes, but before the game we would have taken two goals away from home.
“It is more about qualifying for the Champions League than clean sheets. I will take this all the time.”Trent Alexander-Arnold earned praise from all quarters against Hoffenheim (Image: Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)
Now in his fifth season at Anfield, Mignolet is one of the most experienced members of Klopp's squad and he has played his part in helping Trent Alexander-Arnold settle into the side in the absence of the injured Nathaniel Clyne.
The teenage full-back enjoyed a dream European debut for the Reds as he bagged his first senior goal for the club with a 25-yard free-kick.
“A young guy like Trent, I try and give him as much information as I can,” Mignolet said.
“I was speaking to him after the game and he is such a good player.
“I am turning 30 next year and I am one of the oldest guys in the dressing room so I try and help.”Read More
Now the focus turns to Saturday's home clash with Crystal Palace, who have won their last three trips to Anfield.
Mignolet says it's down to the players to "look in the mirror" and take on board where they can improve as the Reds look to deliver a much more composed performance.
"When you are in the spotlight and play at the highest level, in the Premier League and the Champions League, there are always going to be things thrown at you," he added.
"You have to be strong enough characters to deal with that. We just try and improve in training and create the best team spirit to deal with everything.Read More
"I think we have so much quality inside the team and with what we learned in the last 10 games of last season we can definitely be successful.
"We have to try and look in the mirror and say it is only us who can change it.
"We know how long we had to fight to get that fourth place in the Premier League and we don’t want to throw it away.
"We need to beat Crystal Palace and then see the Champions League qualifier out."
Norwich City registered their first win of the season by easing past Queens Park Rangers at Carrow Road, ending the R's unbeaten start to the campaign.
Striker Nelson Oliveira slotted past Alex Smithies to give the Canaries a deserved lead early in the second half.
Southampton loanee Harrison Reed then made it 2-0, scoring his first goal in senior football with a fine strike from 20 yards.
Jamie Mackie and Conor Washington wasted QPR's best opportunities.
But Norwich were good value for their first victory in 2017-18 - and Daniel Farke's first as head coach following his summer appointment after leaving Borussia Dortmund's reserve team.
The Canaries, who took only one point from their first two matches, missed further chances through Marcel Franke and Wes Hoolahan.
Rangers boss Ian Holloway had named an unchanged team for the third game running for the first time since 2011, but they could not extend their unbeaten start to the season.
Norwich boss Daniel Farke:
"I am very pleased with the win. After Sunderland everyone was very motivated for this game. We received some criticism after the defeat and to be fair it was justified because some of our defending was not good.
"I think you saw a lot of effort and togetherness out there tonight and in the end the players got what they deserved. It was a good performance with two excellent goals and I also thought we defended really well - I can't really remember QPR having a clear-cut chance all night."
QPR boss Ian Holloway:
"I actually thought we defended well for most of the game but what you saw there was unacceptable.
"We could easily have cleared the ball up to our striker and put them under pressure but the ball went straight to them and then they played through us far too easily. We should have been more switched on and covered the second ball.
"Goals change games - and if we had scored the first one I think we would have gone on to win the game."
Sunderland maintained their unbeaten start to the Championship season with a draw at Sheffield Wednesday.
George Honeyman put the visitors ahead after four minutes, blasting in Aiden McGeady's cross from close range.
Black Cats strikers Lewis Grabban and James Vaughan went close to making it 2-0, but David Jones' powerful 25-yard strike brought Wednesday level.
Both goalkeepers were forced into saves before Owls striker Gary Hooper struck the bar and fired wide late on.
Simon Grayson's men had the better of the first half, with McGeady's delivery setting up Honeyman to score his second goal for the club after goalkeeper Keiren Westwood flew off his line.
Grabban headed a McGeady free-kick narrowly wide, Brendan Galloway was denied by Westwood and Vaughan blazed over a rebound as the relegated Premier League side looked to add to their advantage.
Wednesday had their chances however, with Jason Steele having to be alert to keep out Sam Winnall's effort before Hooper smashed a half-volley against the bar.
But despite finishing strongly Wednesday could not find a second goal and are without a win from their opening three Championship matches.
Valon Behrami has left Watford to sign for Italian side Udinese.
Behrami, 32, has signed a two-year deal with the Serie A club who, like Watford, are owned by the Pozzo family.
The Switzerland midfielder made 44 appearances in all competitions for the Hornets, having joined from Hamburg in July 2015.
Udinese become Behrami's sixth Italian club, following stints with Genoa, Hellas Verona, Lazio, Fiorentina and Napoli.
However, Liverpool, anchored by Henderson, were rampant and looked set to rival Antonio Conte’s Chelsea for the title.
But he was then ruled out with a bruised foot towards the end of February, an injury that was initially reported to only keep him out for a week but eventually curtailed his season.
Liverpool were without their captain as they hobbled over the finish line to ensure a place in the top four and a Champions league playoff match to navigate.
His return in pre-season was hyped. In the final few months of the season Liverpool looked blunt and the opposition controlled the middle third. People pointed to the Henderson shaped hole in midfield as one of the reasons.
The Reds had their skipper back at the heart of their midfield, Mohamed Salah had arrived from Roma to bolster their attacking options, Philippe Coutinho looked to be taking his rightful place in a withdrawn role and the arrivals of Virgil van Dijk and Naby Keita looked to be on the horizon.
Henderson appeared to be ticking along nicely in those friendlies – bar a pretty woeful penalty in the Audi Cup final. He had a full pre-season under his belt and was set to reclaim his position at the base of the midfield with Emre Can returning late to training after his spell with Germany at the Confederations Cup.
But then Liverpool went into their opening game of the season against Watford, of course, without Keita and Coutinho in their midfield ranks. RB Leipzig have so far resisted the temptation to sell, and Liverpool’s No.10 is agitating for a move to Barcelona.
Saturday’s opening game saw the home side control the midfield. Henderson and co looked overrun in the middle third, and the captain switched off defensively as Tom Cleverley drove into the penalty area to help set up the second Watford goal on the day.
It was basically everything Henderson’s return was supposed to prevent. Was he rusty? Definitely. Is he still returning to match fitness after months out? Of course. But after a full pre-season in training, it was alarming to see him play as though he was carrying a knock.
And he looked even worse against Hoffenheim on Tuesday. The former Sunderland man wasn’t his usual energetic self, in fact, he was far from it. It was almost as though he was a passenger for the most part.
Players were running off of him, he was slow to get into areas of the pitch he needed to be and his passing was erratic. Liverpool’s centre backs were exposed by a huge hole in front of them as the home side attacked. It wasn’t until Henderson left the pitch after 63 minutes that Liverpool wrestled back control of the match and weren’t relying on Sadio Mane or Mohamed Salah to produce a moment of magic.
Subbing your captain with half an hour remaining in an important Champions League qualifier away from home is indicative of either Henderson’s fitness being an issue, or his performance being extremely poor.
There’s an argument to be made that Hoffenheim had tired by that stage and James Milner could have replaced anybody in that midfield and there would have been an upturn in the performance. But that’s subjective.
You could also claim Klopp was protecting his skipper after months out. Maybe so. But it’s alarming to note just how better Liverpool looked without him labouring in midfield.
There are still question marks over his fitness, meaning it’s near impossible for the Reds to rely on him. Since he took the armband off of Steven Gerrard he’s yet to play 30 games in a season, and of the 6,930 minutes on offer in the Premier League over the past two seasons he’s appeared in just the 3,501 of them.
Daniel Sturridge has been in the Liverpool squad more times than Henderson in the last two seasons (65 for Sturridge vs. Henderson 59).
So, when do Liverpool admit defeat and transition Henderson from a key first-teamer into a squad player, similar to Sturridge?
It would be naive to build a team around the current captain, but if he’s available he can have an impact. The longer Klopp waits the harder it becomes for the Reds to build solid foundations.
An England player was left "shocked" after being the subject of alleged racist remarks made by women's national team head coach Mark Sampson.
Sampson is accused of saying - in 2015 - that the unnamed player had been arrested a number of times.
The alleged comments emerged after a bullying and harassment complaint was made by England striker Eniola Aluko.
When contacted by BBC Sport, the FA reiterated that an independent report found no evidence of wrongdoing.
Striker Aluko, who has 102 England caps, included the allegations in her case against Sampson, which were sent to the FA last year.
When details were leaked on 7 August about the bullying and harassment case, they did not include the alleged remarks made to the player, which Aluko claimed had "derogatory, racial and prejudicial connotations".
BBC Sport understands that the comments made the victim feel extremely uncomfortable.'Haven't you been arrested before?'
It was also revealed last week that Aluko received about £80,000 in a settlement with the FA, but the governing body said the 30-year-old was not "precluded from speaking about the facts of that complaint".
It said it had agreed "a mutual resolution" with her to avoid disrupting the England squad's preparations for Euro 2017, which ended in a semi-final defeat by the Netherlands last Sunday.
Aluko, who is also a lawyer, responded in a statement to confirm that she "raised a grievance against the FA as a result of treatment that I and others previously suffered".
In her original evidence submitted to the FA, Aluko said: "During a meeting, at which I was not present, MS [Sampson] used an analogy about pressing hard in midfield and getting a caution like a police caution.
"MS then addressed the player individually and said in relation to being cautioned by police: 'Haven't you been arrested before? Four times isn't it?'"
Aluko's evidence continued: "This comment about the player was made with derogatory, racial and prejudicial connotations.
"It was also a defamatory, untrue statement given that the player has never been arrested and MS's comment indicates an assumption (subconscious or conscious) that being mixed race from London suggests a criminal record with the police.
"Although I was not present at the meeting, other players confirmed MS made this comment and that it was not received as a joke and created an awkward atmosphere in the room.
"I was deeply concerned and felt it was highly inappropriate for the national team coach to make such a sweeping negative generalisation about a new player in the team."
Since making the complaint, Chelsea forward Aluko has not been picked for England and last played for country in April 2016 despite being the Women's Super League One top scorer the same year.
However, she still remains a centrally contracted player, on a deal worth about £30,000 a year.
Referring to the alleged incident she added: "As a black female in the team, understanding the unfavourable, racial and social connotations underlying MS's comment further heightened my feelings of fear and isolation, especially in light of the previous instances where I have been negatively singled out, too."The FA response
In a statement, the FA said: "Following an internal review into allegations raised by Eniola Aluko last year, The FA commissioned an independent investigation conducted by a barrister, Katharine Newton, who is an expert on employment and discrimination law.
"The detailed independent investigation report did not uphold any of Eniola Aluko's complaints and found no wrong-doing on behalf of The FA or others."
Iain Brunskill recalls the “proper buzz” around the Liverpool Academy.
The boy banging in the goals was just seven years of age but the club's youth coaches knew they had a special talent on their hands.
Eleven years on Trent Alexander-Arnold announced himself to a much wider audience on Tuesday night with his eye-catching contribution to the Reds' 2-1 win over Hoffenheim in the first leg of the Champions League play-off.
Brunskill, who is now the head coach of Jordan Under-23s, was the Academy's assistant technical director when the West Derby youngster first pitched up at Kirkby.
“Trent was only a little boy back then but he had loads of natural ability,” Brunskill told the ECHO.Read More
“He was a striker. He was clever, he was wirey, he was quick and he did some unbelievable things with the ball.
“There was a proper buzz about him even at the age of seven.
“He was just a good kid. Well mannered and hard working. He always listened to the coaches and wanted to learn.
“That's all down to his mum Dianne. She's a great woman and a strong character.
“Listen to him now and he's so focused and down to earth. His mum has kept him that way.”Iain Brunskill, who coached Trent Alexander-Arnold at Liverpool's Academy
Brunskill revealed that a change in Liverpool's recruitment strategy helped them secure the services of Alexander-Arnold, who also spent some time training at Everton.
“You could sign a player at the age of eight to join the Academy,” he said.
“But around that time we were finding it more and more difficult to get them in at that age as other clubs, especially Everton, were starting younger.
“You'd approach a kid at seven and the family would say: 'Well, he's been at Man United for two years.' It wasn't ideal but we had to alter our stance and get involved with them younger.Read More
“I shifted from the community coaching side to recruitment and we called it the pre-Academy. I worked with kids from age of five to eight.
“Steve Heighway used to say if you can coach kids at that age then you can coach anyone because you have to have a certain way about you. The only thing that changes is the size of the shirt.
“We'd go into schools and get them in so there was an affinity with the club so when they were eight we'd already had them for a couple of years.Trent Alexander-Arnold of Liverpool (Image: John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)
“My second year in that programme would have been when Trent was coming through. Ben Woodburn was part of the same programme. Now 10 years on Liverpool are getting the benefits of it and it's great to see.”
Alexander-Arnold had caught Liverpool's eye when he was six after the St Matthew's Primary School pupil's name had been pulled out of a hat to attend an Academy summer school.
Many coaches have played a part in his development over the past decade but Brunskill says the most praise must go to scout Ian Barrigan, who is now the club's head of pre-Academy recruitment and player retention.
“Ian had the biggest influence on Trent,” he said.
“Trent played for his Sunday team and he used to give him lifts everywhere.Read More
“There was a group of us – myself, Paul Johnson, Barry Whitbread, Karl Robinson and Mike Garrity among others.
“They were good times. A good group of young coaches who worked well together and got the best out of young players.
“But it was Ian who got Trent in and helped support him. What he did for him can't be under-estimated.
“He would have still been going to Everton at that time. But Dianne always wanted what was best for Trent and Liverpool was certainly best for him.
“The environment suited him. He's a bright kid and he's taken it on.
“Both Ben and Trent have this freedom. They just play, they don't seem worried about anything and it's fantastic to see. This is just the start for them.”
Brunskill admits they are fortunate to be playing for a manager in Jurgen Klopp who is happy to put his faith in youth.
“It's brilliant and it gives everyone hope,” he said.
“The younger players lower down in the Academy system know if they do well they will get a chance.
“The young players thing fits well with Klopp and the way he wants to play because he's fearless: 'Just go and play.'
“Of course there's more to it than that but he likes the energy of young players and it's refreshing. I'm not sure you'd see Pep Guardiola do it, you certainly wouldn't see Jose Mourinho do it.”Read More
Burscough-born Brunskill came through the ranks at Liverpool himself.
The England youth international signed for the Reds at the age of 11, playing in the same representative team as Paul Dalglish, and trained at the Centre of Excellence under Steve Heighway, Hughie McAuley and Dave Shannon.
He turned pro and played in Sammy Lee's reserves for three seasons but didn't make a senior appearance.
After being released, he had spells at Bury and Leek Town before Heighway offered him a route into coaching.
“My first age group was the under-9s which had Jay Spearing and Stephen Darby in it,” he said.
“They ended up going all the way through and winning the FA Youth Cup.”Trent Alexander-Arnold of Liverpool and Chris Smith of Ipswich Town lead their teams out at the start of the Liverpool v Ipswich Town FA Youth Cup game at Langtree Park on December 16, 2015 in St Helens, England. (Photo by Nick Taylor/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)
Brunskill spent 12 years at the Liverpool Academy before leaving to take over as reserve team boss at Blackburn Rovers in 2008. He was promoted to first-team coach by Steve Kean.
A spell as head coach at Floriana in Malta followed before he worked for the FA doing coach education and assisting England Under-18s.
Brunskill was in charge of Bolton's development squad under Neil Lennon but he was lured to Jordan last summer after being given the chance to link up with Stuart Gelling, who he had worked with at Liverpool.
“Stuart had been appointed technical director of Jordan and they needed an Olympic coach,” he added.Iain Brunskill coaching in Jordan
“That was 13 months ago and it's been a great experience.
“It's not a rich country, no natural resources so it's not like Dubai or Qatar. That has its benefits because players are not wealthy so there's that hunger there. You try to harness that natural enthusiasm and will to work as football is a way out for them.
“The target is to qualify for the next Olympics in 2020.”
They are on track having progressed from a qualification tournament last month. Now the Asia Under-23s Championship Finals in China await next January.
“I want to get back and coach in the UK again at some stage for sure," Brunskill said.
"But working abroad in international football certainly gives you another set of skills which you can bring back."
Everton will not hand a debut to record signing Gylfi Sigurdsson in Thursday's Europa League play-off round first-leg match against Hajduk Split.
The £45m signing from Swansea would not be fit enough to make an immediate debut, manager Ronald Koeman said.
Forward Sandro is a doubt with a heel injury and midfielder James McCarthy misses out with a knock to the knee.
Koeman will pick his strongest team, rather than resting anyone for Monday's match with Manchester City.
"We don't reserve people for Monday," he said. "We like to be part of Europe. We will put a strong team in."
Of their opponents, who are second in the Croatian table after five games, Koeman said: "We know a lot about them. My brother [and assistant] Erwin watched their game away to Dinamo Zagreb [on 6 August].
"We have videos of them. They do not have any secrets from us and we do not have any from them. They are physically strong at the back."
Состав сборной Голландии:
вратари – Яспер Силлессен ("Барселона"), Мартен Стекеленбург ("Эвертон"), Йерун Зут (ПСВ);
защитники – Джоэл Велтман ("Аякс"), Дэйли Блинд ("Манчестер Юнайтед"), Бруно Мартинс Инди ("Сток Сити"), Кенни Тете ("Лион"), Стефан де Фрай, Уэсли Худт (оба – "Лацио"), Натан Аке ("Борнмут");
полузащитники – Кевин Стротман ("Рома"), Джорджиньо Вайналдум ("Ливерпуль"), Донни ван де Бек, Маттейс де Лигт (оба – "Аякс"), Джеремейн Ленс ("Бешикташ"), Мемфис Депай ("Лион"), Арьен Роббен ("Бавария"), Дэйви Преппер ("Брайтон"), Марко ван Гинкель (ПСВ), Йенс Торнстра, Тонни Вильяена, Стивен Бергейс (все – "Фейеноорд"), Весли Снайдер ("Галатасарай"), Дэви Классен ("Эвертон");
нападающие – Квинси Промес ("СПАРТАК"), Бас Дост ("Спортинг" Л), Винсент Янссен ("Тоттенхэм"), Робин ван Перси ("Фенербахче"), Юрген Локадия (ПСВ), Райан Бабел ("Бешикташ").
– А как вам карьерный путь Андрея Аршавина? Он стал лучшим в России, уехал в Англию, провел полтора хороших сезона в "Арсенале", а потом потихоньку пропал с радаров.
– В свое время Аршавин был самым сильным российским футболистом. Играл в "Арсенале", делал покер в ворота "Ливерпуля", забивал "Барселоне". Считался если и не лидером "канониров", то в определенный период точно одним из ключевых игроков этой команды. Было бы супер провести карьеру так же, как и он. Я не против.
– Он был вашим кумиром?
– Да, когда был еще маленьким, смотрел Euro-2008, восхищался его игрой. Можно назвать Аршавина моим кумиром. Очень сильный футболист. (Виталий АЙРАПЕТОВ)
В БЕРНЕ МЫ БЫЛИ ВЫХОЛОЩЕНЫ – В ДЕРБИ ОСТАВИЛИ МНОГО ЭМОЦИЙ
– Сложный матч в Берне, тяжелая победа – начал Головин. – Сказался плотный график, плюс искусственное поле, непривычное. Тренировались-то мы все время на естественном. Нам повезло в концовке. Защитник хозяев ошибся, забив автогол. Думаю, ничья была бы справедливым результатом.
– А в чем особенность поля в Берне?
– Совсем другой отскок, иное движение. К этому нужно привыкать.
– А какой матч дался тяжелее – дерби со "Спартаком" или поединок со швейцарцами?
– В дерби оставили много эмоций. Поэтому в Берне были немного выхолощены. Честно говоря, первые 15 минут я не до конца понимал, что уже в игре. Не отошел от предыдущего матча психологически. В общем, по эмоциям со "Спартаком" было сложнее.
– А по игре?
– Уровень Лиги чемпионов все-таки повыше будет.
– В курсе, что за вашей игрой против "Янг Бойз" наблюдали скауты дортмундской "Боруссии"?
– Было приятно об этом прочитать. Но вообще не думал о скаутах "Боруссии". Я – игрок ЦСКА, все мои мысли сейчас только об этой команде.
– Вас называют сейчас самым одаренным российским молодым игроком. Но Виктор Гончаренко сказал про вас: "Головина не заносит от похвалы в прессе. Он все такой же мальчик, любящий футбол". А что или кто не позволяет вам зазвездиться?
– Даже не знаю. Может быть, все потому, что я родом из маленького города. И понимаю, как все это мне далось. Я же и думать не мог, что дорасту до уровня ЦСКА и буду играть за основную команду.
– А что родители вам говорят?
– Папа в молодости сам играл в футбол. По-прежнему дает какие-то советы. Конечно, родители смотрят каждый мой матч.
– После того, как вы стали ключевым игроком ЦСКА, братья Березуцкие меньше "пихают" на тренировках?
– На самом деле, им без разницы кого ругать, если, конечно, есть за что. Будь ты лидер команды или новичок, если не доработал или не добежал, братья справедливо тебе "напихают". К этому нужно относиться абсолютно нормально.
– А если на тренировке прокинуть мяч между ногами Вернблуму, он не посмотрит на то, что вы Головин и отомстит?
– (Улыбается). На самом деле, можем просто посмеяться. Никакой агрессии со стороны Вернблума нет. Каждому можно прокинуть между ногами в "квадрате" – никто не обижается.
– И все-таки что нужно сделать, чтобы у тебя не снесло крышу от популярности и неплохого контракта?
– Здесь, по-моему, все довольно просто. Главное – любить футбол, усердно работать и особо ни о чем больше не думать. Ни о деньгах, ни о контракте. Даже если тебя все время ставят в стартовый состав, нельзя сбавлять обороты.
Вторник. Берн. "Янг Бойз" - ЦСКА - 0:1. Реакция ВИТИНЬЮ и Александра ГОЛОВИНА (№17) на автогол Касима Нуху. Фото REUTERS
АВТОГОЛ? КОГДА-ТО ЖЕ И НАМ ДОЛЖНО ВЕЗТИ
– Ожидали такой мощной игры от "Янг Бойз"?
– Да, конечно. Разбирали игру соперника и прекрасно понимали, что это очень сильная команда. Было ясно, что потеря концентрации может обернуться для нас серьезными проблемами.
– В России искусственные поля такие же по качеству?
– Вот в Уфе поле лучше. А в Перми примерно такое же, как в Берне. На них играть гораздо сложнее. К такому покрытию я еще не привык. Мы же фактически провели там одну короткую предыгровую тренировку. Да, быстро вкатились в игру, но, не буду скрывать, поначалу пришлось непросто...
– В первом тайме у вас мало что получалось в созидании. 35-й номер хозяев Саного оказался слишком серьезным оппонентом?
– Да они там практически все такие крупные. Было изначально понятно, что в борьбе они нам вряд ли уступят. Тем более играли дома при своих болельщиках, которые гнали их вперед. При этом они где-то давали и нам играть, а сами проводили весьма опасные контратаки. В общем, хорошая, крепкая команда.
– Желто-черные трибуны сильно давили?
– Да нет. Я уже не обращаю внимания на то, что кричат болельщики соперника. Сконцентрирован только на игре. Так что это мне не мешало.
– Первая мысль, когда увидели автогол?
– Очень неожиданное развитие событий. Хорошо, что так сложилось. С другой стороны, и нам когда-то уже должно повезти, чтобы такие мячи залетали в чужие ворота. Во вторник фортуна, наконец, улыбнулась ЦСКА.
– Имеете в виду, что вам воздалось за те матчи, в которых вы незаслуженно проиграли?
– Да. Я думал об этом. Ведь были матчи в чемпионате России, в которых мы создавали моменты, но нам просто не везло. А в итоге уступали...
– В каких матчах?
– Да в тех же встречах с "Локомотивом" (1:3) и "Рубином" (1:2) по игре мы выглядели, как мне показалось, даже лучше. Да можно вспомнить и дерби со "Спартаком" в прошлом сезоне на нашем стадионе. Сколько мы моментов не реализовали в той встрече?! А на табло – 1:2...
12 августа. Москва. ЦСКА - "Спартак" - 2:1. Александр ГОЛОВИН (№17) и ВИТИНЬЮ празднуют гол. Фото Александр ФЕДОРОВ, "СЭ"
НЕ ДУМАЮ, ЧТО "СПАРТАК" СТАЛ СЛАБЕЕ
– В дерби вы почувствовали, что "Спартак" стал слабее по сравнению с прошлым сезоном? Что сейчас не так с красно-белыми?
– Да я бы не сказал, что они ослабли. Спартаковцы играли хорошо, навязывали нам борьбу на каждом участке поля. В какой-то мере нам не повезло в начале игры. Помните, какой хороший, пусть и не 100-процентный момент, был у Дзагоева? Опасно били издали, но...
– Генеральный директор вашего клуба Роман Бабаев даже признался, что после гола "Спартака" начал верить в карму...
– Да, да! Я тоже вспомнил предыдущее дерби на нашем стадионе, когда мы упустили немало моментов. Подумалось: не может же быть так два раза подряд!
– Щенникова, наверное, теперь называете супербомбардиром?
– Ну он же сказал в интервью, что будет забивать. Видите, свое слово держит. (Улыбается)
– Показалось,что после пропущенного мяча ЦСКА уперся в стену. Сами верили, что способны все перевернуть?
– Конечно. Даже когда некоторые болельщики и друзья смирились с поражением, понимал, что можем еще все перевернуть. Мы же проводили неплохие атаки. А когда команда ведет в счете и пропускает в концовке, то может психологически надломиться. Так, видимо, и случилось со "Спартаком". И тут же забили второй мяч.
– Что лично вы испытываете к "Спартаку? Это для вас красная тряпка, красно-белые вас реально раздражают?
– Никакой особой ненависти к "Спартаку" не испытываю. Это просто принципиальный соперник, с которым всегда приятно играть. И, конечно, каждый раз хочется только побеждать.
– А вы же сами могли оказаться когда-то в "Спартаке"?
– Да, мне тогда было 10 или 11 лет. Приехал из своего города с родителями в "Спартак" на просмотр. Где-то неделю тренировался.
– Не подошли?
– Мне сказали, что взяли бы меня, если бы я жил в Москве. А в интернат они готовы были пригласить иногородних ребят, если те были сильнее местных.
– То есть у вас примерно такая же ситуация, как у Кокорина?
– Да, что-то подобное.
– Кстати, как вам нынешний "Зенит"?
– Этот "Зенит" однозначно гораздо сильнее прошлогоднего. Достаточно посмотреть на того же Кокорина, как он преобразился. Забивает в каждой игре. Думаю, сейчас зенитовцы – главные конкуренты в борьбе за золото.
Александр ГОЛОВИН на тренировке ЦСКА. Фото Александр ФЕДОРОВ, "СЭ"
ГОТОВ ЛИ ИГРАТЬ ЗА "КАНОНИРОВ"? Я С НИМИ НЕ ТРЕНИРОВАЛСЯ
– Допускаете, что вашу игру в дерби посмотрел Арсен Венгер и принял решение: этого парня нужно приобрести во чтобы то ни стало – либо сейчас, либо зимой?
– Сложно ответить на такой вопрос. Даже не представляю, что там да как (улыбается). Но было бы приятно, если такой специалист обратил на меня внимание и пригласил в "Арсенал".
– Представим, что завтра вам поступает предложение от лондонцев. Ваши действия?
– Конечно, мне будет приятно, что мной заинтересовался такой клуб. На мой взгляд, каждый футболист, в не зависимости от возраста, хочет поиграть в Европе. Я не исключение.
– А вы сами в 21 год уже готовы попробовать свои силы в команде уровня "Арсенала"?
– Не могу ответить на ваш вопрос. Я же с этой командой не тренировался. Не знаю, как там и что. Да, мы играли в Лиге чемпионов с соперниками такого уровня, но я не знаю ситуацию изнутри. Конечно, хотел бы попробовать там свои силы. И все-таки четкого представления о том, готов ли я к "Арсеналу", у меня сейчас нет.
– Считаю, ничего страшного с ним не случилось. В принципе, было понятно, что его сначала отдадут в аренду. В "Сити" собраны очень сильные исполнители, высокая конкуренция. Но никакой катастрофы нет. Думаю, уже максимум через год Зинченко сможет побороться за место в составе "МС". А пока, наверное, еще немного поиграет в аренде.
– А вы не погорячились, сказав на встрече с болельщиками, что не покинете ЦСКА, пока команда вновь не станет чемпионом?
– Думаю, все понимают, что я сказал это не на полном серьезе. Просто ответил на вопрос. Все посмеялись. Нельзя утверждать со стопроцентной уверенностью такие вещи. Кто знает, футбол ведь вещь непредсказуемая.
Александр Головин не против повторить путь Андрея АРШАВИНА в "Арсенале". Фото REUTERS
АРШАВИН БЫЛ МОИМ КУМИРОМ
– А как вам карьерный путь Андрея Аршавина? Он стал лучшим в России, уехал в Англию, провел полтора хороших сезона в "Арсенале", а потом потихоньку пропал с радаров.
– В свое время Аршавин был самым сильным российским футболистом. Играл в "Арсенале", делал покер в ворота "Ливерпуля", забивал "Барселоне". Считался если и не лидером "канониров", то в определенный период точно одним из ключевых игроков этой команды. Было бы супер провести карьеру так же, как и он. Я не против.
– Он был вашим кумиром?
– Да, когда был еще маленьким, смотрел Euro-2008, восхищался его игрой. Можно назвать Аршавина моим кумиром. Очень сильный футболист.
– Не обидно, что сборную России порой так нещадно критикуют?
– Я понимаю недовольство болельщиков. На домашнем Кубке конфедераций все хотели, чтобы сборная вышла из группы. Считаю, мы выложились по полной, приложили все свои усилия, но что-то не получилось. Так бывает... Считаю, играли мы хорошо. Заслуживали выйти в четвертьфинал. Однако получили вот такие ненужные голы... Жаль.
– На домашнем чемпионате мира готовы повести за собой сборную, стать нашей "надеждой №17"? (В ЦСКА Головин играет под 17-м номером. – Прим."СЭ")
– Мне будет 22 года. По футбольным меркам уже не молодой. Считаю, в таком возрасте нужно проявлять свои лучшие качества не только в клубе, но и в сборной. В том числе и лидерские.
– Не думаете, что можете остаться в ЦСКА, получить еще более выгодный контракт и просто не уехать в Европу?
– На самом деле я хотел бы поиграть в Европе. Но если не сложится, готов остаться в ЦСКА, и, как Акинфеев, провести здесь свою карьеру. Считаю, это было бы очень почетно.
Берн – Москва
Shankly Hotel to mark anniversary by unveiling The Beatles' never-before-seen telegram to Liverpool icon
It's been two years since the Shankly Hotel opened its doors to the public, and the venue now has the largest capacity in the city, with 509 beds throughout the property on Victoria Street.
And as the owners prepare to usher in the two-year anniversary of its opening, the Shankly will unveil an iconic piece of memorabilia which will be on display permanently from the beginning of September.Bill Shankly and Ron Yeats in 1965
The telegram from the Fab Four, which was sent before the 1965 FA Cup final against Leeds United, reads: "Best of luck lads we’ll be watching on the tele. John Paul George and Ringo".
The telegram was signed off by all four Beatles - despite Paul McCartney's allegiances as an Evertonian !
With The Beatles' Ticket To Ride sitting proud at number one in the UK charts on May 1 1965, Shankly's Liverpool beat Leeds 2-1 at Wembley to pick up the first of two FA Cups under the legendary Scot.The Beatles sent Bill Shankly a telegram ahead of the 1965 FA Cup final (Image: ©Mirrorpix)
However, before the telegram is officially placed into the hotel as part of its attractions, the unique piece of memorabilia will be on view to the public from Monday August 14 until Sunday August 20.
Co-founder of The Shankly Hotel, Chris Shankly-Carline said: "I still can’t quite believe we have this amazing hotel which honours my grandad.Bill Shankly’s grandson Chris Carline-Shankly and granddaughter Emma Parry with the telegram from The Beatles
"He touched so many lives so it means everything that we can give fans, friends and family a place to come that pays tribute to his achievements for the city.
"The Shankly Hotel is everything and more than I ever imagined it would be and its first two years have been incredibly successful so it’s a great achievement for myself and the Shankly family along with everyone at Signature Living."