Barcelona confirmed the departure of the young Spaniard Munir to Sevilla. The 23-year-old was a backup for Luis Suarez in the main team. Valverde often did not consider him in his plans. Munir's game play was limited to only Spanish Cup matches. Even though Munir spent his youth career in Barcelona, he was never a fan favourite. Barcelona's passing game didn't suit him well.

 To replace Luis Suarez in the starting lineup, you have to be something special especially considering the Uruguayan's exceptional chemistry with Messi. Munir only had 11 appearances for the Los Blaugranas with 2 goals in his account. Hope he can bring out his entire potential at his new club. Good luck for him!

Now let's return back to Camp Nou. The only center forward available for Valverde is the 31-year-old Luis Suarez. Valverde was forced to play Dembele, who is naturally a winger, as a center forward due to lack of his options. No wonder Barca lost that match! Playing Lionel Messi as false no.9 is another choice. But the Argentine talisman is more comfortable in right wing position.

There is no doubt that the Uruguayan Suarez is one of the best strikers in the world. He already scored 14 goals in 24 matches for Barcelona so far in this season. But it is time for Camp Nou to welcome another forward as age is not a favourable factor for Suarez. Injuries can also affect him easily. Here we take a look at three players who can replace Munir in Barcelona colours:

             1) ALVARO MORATA

Most promising talent to a miserable flop; Morata's career journey from Juventus to Chelsea sums up in a simple line. Morata is the best example why Premier League is considered as the toughest league in the world.

The 26-year-old started his youth career at Real Madrid Academy. Later, Los Blancos sent him to Turin for a 2-year loan deal. Morata showed great potential during that period where he scored 15 goals for Juve including goals against Real Madrid in Champions League.

 He returned to Bernabue on 2016 and settled nicely. He became a super-sub and made instant impact on the pitch whenever he got the opportunity.

 Chelsea brought him to London with huge hopes. Even though the Spaniard started well in Blue colours, he lost his confidence in front of goal. He missed many open chances. Morata scored 16 goals in 47 appearances so far for Chelsea.

There are rumours regarding Higuain joining the London side. If that is the case, then Chelsea would be forced to offload Morata to make room for the Argentine. Barcelona are likely to sign the Spaniard as a backup for Suarez and can be the future no.9. Who knows! Maybe Morata can build up his old form in La Liga with the quality around him. 

             2) CRISTHIAN STUANI

The 32-year-old Uruguayan Cristhian Stuani is another option for Valverde. According to reports, Barcelona are interested to trigger the €15m release clause for the Girona man.

Stuani is expressing outstanding piece of play in this season with 12 goals in 17 appearances. He is in third position behind the Barcelona duo of Messi and Suarez in the top scorer chart.

Stuani is nearing an exit from Girona as his contract is up at the end of the season. Stuani is not a long term replacement considering his age. But he is capable to answer Barcelona's striker issues. The former Middlesbrough man has a plenty of experience in the Spanish League with a record of 85 goals in 237 appearances.

Stuani is good at dribbling and definitely a clinical finisher. Due to the lack of options for Valverde, it is possible that Barcelona would trigger his release clause without waiting for a free transfer. Then we could see the partnership of two Uruguayan centre forwards at Camp Nou.

            3) OLIVIER GIROUD

The World Cup Winner, Olivier Giroud can also be a backup for Suarez. The Chelsea man is not a starter under Sarri and struggling to find his spot. With Hazard and Morata ahead of him, the French man could make his way into Camp Nou.

The 32-year-old scored only four goals in thirty matches for the London club. "Don't judge a book by its cover". Just like that, it is totally stupid if you judge Giroud looking at his goal stats alone. The French man often brings more than just goals as a striker. He is a perfect team player. His strength and presence make gaps for wingers to expose the opposition box. Hazard likes to play more with Giroud more than Morata as the Belgian gets more freedom with the French man in the box. It's the same reason why Deschamps included Giroud in the World Cup squad and excluded the scoring machine Lacazette.

Valverde can apply the same mixture with Giroud and Messi in Camp Nou. Also, Giroud is very good in headers and acrobatic goals. It would be a great deal for Barcelona if they can land the French striker.


Another day with another transfer rumour on the air. As usual, it is Arsenal linking up with a midfielder. According to reports from Mirror, the Gunners are weighing up moves for the Algerian Yacine Brahimi from Porto. The 28-year-old is going to terminate his contract with the Portuguese side and would be a free agent in this summer.


Arsenal had already spoken with the player’s agents and looking for a pre-contract agreement. Premier League clubs like Manchester United and Everton are also running along with the Gunners to tie up the attacking midfielder. Considering the limited budget of Arsenal and lack of creative players in the squad makes the Gunners ideal for the signing.

Brahimi started his senior career in Rennes and later they sent him to Ligue 2 side Clermont on a loan deal. In 2010, he returned back to Rennes despite the strong interest from Arsenal and Real Madrid. He scored six goals in twenty-three appearances for the French side. On 2014, Porto announced his signing where he made a name for himself.

The Algerian is having a terrific season so far with Porto. He scored seven goals and assisted six in a total of 25 matches. His contribution behind the run of Porto in the Champions League is priceless as the Portuguese side finished top in the group stage. Brahimi has a total of 44 goals in 149 matches for Porto.

Emery can use Brahimi either as a midfielder or as a winger. The 28-year-old is blessed with splendid dribbling and can tear up defences with his pace. His through balls and passing are blistering for eyes. Brahimi also showed his class on scoring with four goals in last six matches. But still, Brahimi is not a clinical finisher and it is considered as one of his drawbacks. He is also good at utilizing foul kicks.

Even though he brings quality to the attack, his contribution to defence is very much less. The midfielder often fails to tackle the opponents and break up the counters. Emery might give him a free role considering his weakness in the defence. 

Brahimi is much needed for the Gunners when compared to Manchester United. After a tremendous 22 match unbeaten streak, Emery faced a lot of setbacks. The last one in the list is their away defeat against West Ham United.

 Injuries also played a big part in the recent form of Arsenal. Holding, Mkhitaryan and Welbeck are out of the squad on long term injuries. As Ramsey is nearing an exit from Emirates and Ozil’s future hanging in the air, Brahimi could be the saviour for the Gunners.

Ozil-Emery saga once again fueled up as Emery left the German out of the squad against West Ham. Fans went crazy after seeing the eleven as the German didn’t even make up the bench. Seriously it’s not the way to handle one of the best players in your squad. There is something really fishy happening in between Emery and Ozil. If Ozil is not in Emery’s plans anymore, then Brahimi would be apt for replacing the German in Emirates.


Brahimi can bring up the creativity in the midfield and can give the perfect passes to Auba-Laca duo. Xhaka and Guendouzi lack the vision to give key passes which split the opposition defences. Arsenal have many youngsters like Reiss Nelson and Bukayo Saka. But they still need many years for gaining experience and establishing themselves in the hardship of Premier League.

There are also rumours linking Denis Suarez of Barcelona with the Gunners. But Emery made it clear that the Arsenal board is currently facing a financial struggle and are not able to sign anyone permanently with transfer fee. So Brahimi could be the right man to head into Emirates in this transfer window. 


Offence is the best defence; one of the fundamental principles in world football. It is even practical in real life. When challenges or difficulties arrive, you have to face and oppose it. If we try to run away, sooner or later we would be screwed.

Yesterday, India got eliminated from the Asian Cup after a pathetic loss against Bahrain. India was in the second position on the table before the match and dropped to the fourth position after the match. The opposition scored through a penalty in the injury time due to an unnecessary foul by Pronay Halder inside the penalty box. A heartbreaking moment for the entire people in India.


It was a totally different side against Bahrain. Stephen Constantine, Indian Coach made only one change in the starting lineup: Rowllin Borges IN and Anirudh Thapa OUT. Rowllin is a defensive minded player with physical strength. The intention was clear that the coach wanted a draw from the match.

In the previous two games, India played splendid piece of attacking football. The Blue Tigers crushed Thailand with a three-goal margin. Even though they lost against mighty UAE, the fans saw lovely attack from Indian side. It was just an unlucky match.

India lost their key defender Anas Edathodika in the early stages of the game. Bahrain maximised the situation and started to exert intense pressure. They tried long-rangers and played with more physical strength since it was a do or die match for them. Gradually, the entire game stayed on India's half.

India successfully defended Bahrain from scoring in the first half. Gurpreet, Indian keeper made some good saves. It was totally a one-sided game. Every time Bahrain losses possession, they regained it with vigour mentality.

No change for the style of play in the second half. We could feel "it is coming; it is coming". Bahrain got an indirect spot kick inside the penalty box for a silly mistake made by Indian defence. There was a noise of relief when Bahrain shot deflected wide.

In extra time, the inevitable happened. Pronay Halder fouled Rashid inside the box. Referee blew the whistle and Rashid converted without any panic. Bahrain into the knockout stage and India back home. There was one difference between Bahrain and India: Bahrain played to win and India played to avoid loss. God is always with the brave.

One man that I am feeling extremely sorry is Sandesh Jhingan. He doesn't deserve to lose yesterday. In the absence of Anas, the entire workload was on his shoulders. He defended like a soldier and made his impact on the pitch.

"We defended like warriors & the defeat is really hard to take. Disappointed seeing how it turned out but we can only go upwards from here. Proud of the boys and we thank the fans for their support" - Sandesh Jhingan(After the match)


Eight years back on this day on January 14, 2011, team India suffered a 5-2 defeat against Bahrain, in the AFC Asian Cup 2011. Now it is just 1-0. I have hope in this team. The emergence of Isl brought up many talents for the future. Many academies are running for the grass root development of football in various parts of the Country. It's a positive sign to look forward to the coming years. 

I am happy and proud at the moment. India played with their heart during the entire group stage. It is not the end of Indian football. It's just the beginning. One day, India will make up a name for themselves in football. #BLUE TIGERS


Camp Nou welcomed Coutinho from Liverpool last year as they expect him to be the perfect replacement for Iniesta. Barcelona made him the third expensive signing with a mammoth fee of $162 million. The Brazilian had a promising start in his new club and scored 10 goals in his debut season for Blaugranas.
Expectations went sky high for his first full season in Camp Nou. But to be honest, he is not even showing half of Liverpool Coutinho. The Ex-Reds star found the net only 6 times so far this season. He often finds his place on the bench as Valverde prefer Dembele and Arthur ahead of him.

With such a hefty price tag, Coutinho had immense pressure upon his shoulders during his arrival in January. When someone considers you as a valuable asset, then it is up to you to prove that you are worth the money. He faced a lot of criticism from Liverpool fans for leaving the club in the middle of the season. The task in front of him wasn’t easy either which was to replace Iniesta in the heart of Barca’s midfield. No doubt that pressure played a big part in Coutinho’s recent form.

Coutinho likes to play as an attacking midfielder rather than a left winger. We can see the change in his play with the Brazil National team where Neymar plays the role of winger and Coutinho as an attacking midfielder. It is more suitable for him as he loves to be in a free role on the pitch. Valverde often puts him in the left-wing role which seems to be insecure for the Brazilian. He doesn’t have the pace for making the overlaps and to produce crosses.


Recent signings like Arthur and Vidal also affected Coutinho. Both the players showed tremendous piece of play whenever they got a chance. Under a defensive minded coach like Valverde, there is no surprise if you see Rakitic and Vidal starts ahead of Coutinho in the starting eleven. The bromance between Valverde and Rakitic is still a mystery for the fans as the Croatian keeps finding his place on the starting eleven in almost all the matches. Vidal brings the fighting spirit to the team and is able to play as a box-to-box midfielder. Fans already started comparing Arthur with Xavi due to his calm and composure style of play. Valverde has various options for midfield now.

Coutinho was not the only signing for Barcelona after Neymar went to PSG. Barca signed the French wonder kid Dembele from Dortmund to replace the Brazilian. The 21-year-old is considered as one of the future star and Valverde seems to be impressed in the young lad. He is blessed with pace and skills which makes him the ideal choice for the left winger position over Coutinho.

It is interesting to note that at first, Dembele struggled to make it into the starting eleven while Coutinho often got his chance. Now things are reversed; Dembele in the starting lineup and Coutinho warming up the bench.

Injuries also played a big part in Coutinho’s career at Barcelona. The Brazilian suffered from a Torn muscle bundle in early November which costs him 19 days out of the pitch. After that injury, Coutinho didn’t find his rhythm back. He also had an injury when Barca signed him which made his debut late for Blaugranas. Even a slight injury would make you pay in such a star-studded club.

It is clear that Coutinho is not getting the one man star value in Barcelona when compared to Liverpool especially due to the presence of Messi. Coutinho must fight to earn his spot back. At the moment he lacks confidence and fighting spirit.


There are rumours regarding a swap deal with Coutinho and Neymar. Also Manchester United are aiming to lure the Brazilian away from Camp Nou. The 26-year-old have many years to come and a move from Camp Nou considering his current situation seems to be possible.

Coutinho is one of the best in his position and has the potential to be the next big thing in Barcelona.
He just needs some time to regain his confidence and form. Hopefully, we can see old Coutinho very soon in Camp Nou. Barcelona will face Eibar tonight and let us see whether the Brazilian gets his place on the pitch. #Visca El Barça


Arsenal planning to bring more quality to their midfield as a £63 million offer is on the table for the 27-year-old Colombian International James Rodriguez. According to reports from foxsports, Arsenal are leading the line to get his signature while they face fierce competition from the likes of Liverpool and Manchester United.


The Colombian is on his second spell of a two-year loan deal at Bayern from Real Madrid. The Madrid star suffered from injuries and lack of game time so far this season. Considering his relationship with Niko Kovac, it is unlikely that the Bavarians sign him on a permanent basis. It is interesting to see whether James would go back to a struggling Madrid or make his way to the Premier League.

The turning point in his life was the 2014 FIFA World Cup. He scored 6 goals and 5 assists for his Country. No football fan can forget his wonder volleyed opening goal against Uruguay which won the FIFA Puskás Award. His splendid performance tempted Real Madrid to make another Galactico signing.

James often found his place at the bench under Zidane as he made Asensio and Isco regular starters in the eleven. Despite winning back-to-back Champion's League titles, he went to Bayern on a loan deal. After all, a player of his quality should be on the pitch and not warming up the bench.
James made an influential start for the Baverians on his first spell. He linked up perfectly in that number 10 role. Later injuries started to hunt him down. He found it hard to maintain his form and left out from the eleven oftentimes.

He scored 7 goals and produced 11 in 23 matches during his first spell in Bayern. In this season, he played only 8 matches and scored 3 goals so far. The difference is crystal clear and it is a matter of time for him to decide his next destination as Arsenal seems more likely.

Arsenal is in search of creativity for their team. As Aaron Ramsey nearing an exit at the end of the season and lack of stability for Ozil would tempt the Gunners to break their bank for the Colombian. But it is not clear whether the club can afford his signing, considering the huge salary of the current players especially the German Ozil.

James can make a formidable midfield with Xhaka and Torreira. He is intelligent and is capable of turning around the game with a touch. The Colombian can produce the perfect through balls and wide passes for the Laca-Auba duo to finish. Emery can use James as an attacking midfielder or as a right-winger.

No doubt that James is one of the best in his position. But the addition of the Colombian means the exit of Mesut Ozil from Emirates because of the similarity in their playing and to maintain financial stability. There are also rumours linking Denis Suarez of Barcelona to Arsenal. So most probably it would be Ramsey-Ozil duo out and Denis-James duo in.

As a fan, I would be happy to see this deal happen. James has the calibre to fill Ozil's void and his absence in important matches due to "mysterious injuries". Recently Emery dropped Ozil from the starting eleven and controversy regarding the player and the coach is on air. If Emery gets support from the board for the transfer, we could see James in Emirates soon. #COYG


I am sharing my personal experience on using Nivia Equator Football from Amazon. I bought this football 2 months ago to play with my friends in college. The initial impressions and design of the product met my requirements. Amazon service took 3 days for the delivery.

Coming to the features and details:

              > The ball is rubber-made and hand stitched.

              > Size of the ball is 5.

              > It is suitable for hard ground also.

              > The outer material is covered with polyurethane.

              > It is water resistant and ideal for men and boys.

              > Weight of the product is approximately 400g.

I liked the design and colour combination. Even though the colour started fading after couple of matches, still we can identify it easily. It is little bit bouncy and you can expect great swing.

The ball is well balanced as it is safe to head the ball without getting injured. Also you can play without boots as the material is not much hard compared to other balls at this price range.

Considering the price tag, it is okay that there is no pump included with the deal. But you will get the needle and can fill it manually. Be careful not to over inflate.

After one month usage

Overall I am really satisfied with the football so far. If you are looking for a budget, nice looking, durable football, just go for it. You can practice on it or can use in professional matches.

If you are interested, check here and buy it from Amazon. Make sure to maintain it properly.


Former FIFA President Sepp Blatter once called India 'A Sleeping Giant'. Considering the enormous population, India could have been one of the strongest teams in the world. Even though India stands at second position in World's population, the growth of sports especially football is comparatively low compared to other countries. There are numerous reasons behind this:

                > Parents in India wants their children to become a Doctor or an engineer or any other white-collar jobs.

                > Education system is enclosed with printed books and not friendly towards outdoor games.

                > Less success rate in field of football.

                > Lack of grass root level training in most of the states.

                > India is a developing Nation and has its own limitations in facilities.

In last five years, India has improved in the field of football. Introduction of ISL with high promotion increased attention from other countries. Big names in football like Roberto Carlos, Diego Forlan, Tim Cahill, Berbatov came to India as part of the ISL.

Clubs started different programs for the growth of football. Several youth academies and teams formed. They found local talents and promoted them to the team. Friendly matches and pre-season tours organized for gaining experience for the lads.

Manjappada: Kochi Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium

Fans also gave terrific support which was unbelievable in such a cricket maddened country. Fans of Kerala Blasters FC and Bengaluru FC; Manjappada and West Block Blues respectively showed professional attitude towards the game. They cheered for the team even in sufferings and travelled with them in away match. Their friendly rivalry and chants are fun to watch.


In every season of ISL, a handful of young talented stars arises. Players like Sandesh Jhingan, Anas, Anirudh, Narzary, Udanta etc. are the findings of ISL. There is an award known as "The Emerging Player Of The Year" given to the best young potential of the season. Gradually they will be selected to represent the Country.

Sunil Chhethri

Currently India is standing at 97th position in FIFA rankings. I know it is not that great to boast upon. But considering the background of my country, I am proud to say that my Country will participate in Fifa World Cup very soon.

Yesterday India beat Thailand in Asian Cup match with a scoreline 4-1. My captain Sunil Chhethri became the Second Highest Active International Top Scorer. I saw good passing; I saw pacy counter attacks; I saw clinical finishes; I saw determined tackles; I saw commitment in every player.

8 months ago, Thailand refused to play with India saying that they don't have quality. Now India thrashed the same "Quality Thailand" and showed the entire world not to underestimate them.

 It is just the beginning for the Indian team. Still a long way to go and they have to keep the momentum going. Good luck. #BLUETIGERS #AFC


Emery is ready to make his first January signing as he wants the 24-year-old Barcelona central midfielder Denis Suarez as a £20 million offer is on the table. According to reports from Skysports, Emery is eagerly waiting to reunite with the Spaniard, having worked with him at Sevilla during 2014-15 season.

The Spanish youngster started his teenage career at the academy of Manchester City. In 2012, he was awarded Manchester City's Young Player of the Year. The Barcelona board found his talent and signed him on 2013. Later he was loaned to Sevilla for two seasons where he worked under Unai Emery.

He returned to Camp Nou as it is his dream to be in the starting lineup and to play alongside with the likes of Messi, Iniesta etc. Definitely it was tough for him to show his talent in such a star-studded team. Often injuries also drag him back. The youngster scored 8 goals in his 30 appearances for the club.

Recent Barcelona signings including Arthur and Vidal ensured that Denis Suarez stays on the bench. Valverde, coach of Barcelona wasn't much interested in the Spaniard and the fans couldn't even find his name on the squad list. His game time was reduced to Spanish Cup and few La Liga matches.

There are strong rumours linking Aaron Ramsey with PSG and Juventus. And considering Ozil's unstable performance and injuries, it is an ideal signing for the Gunners. Emery can use Suarez as a central midfielder or as a left winger. He can make a formidable midfield with Xhaka and Torreira.

Denis Suarez is considered as a huge potential by fans and football pundits. He is intelligent and can control the game as well. He is one of the most underrated players just because he currently plays in one of the best clubs in the world. To find a player with his commitment and desire is hard especially in a money-minded world.

The rumour is so strong and we could see Denis in Arsenal's colours very soon. As a fan, I really wants to see this deal to happen very soon. It is good for both the player and the club. I am sure that even Barcelona fans would be happy to see this transfer happen as he is a fan-favourite. #COYG


My mind: don't say it...... don't say it..... don't say it.... Manchester United are back!

From struggling to find goals to win four consecutive matches, Ole started his "caretaker" job pretty well. Noone will wonder if the caretaker job turns to permanent manager job.

Source: Manchester United Facebook Page MUFC

It is clearly visible that their style of play and attitude towards the game changed. Ole have faith in young talents. Angel Gomes got his opportunity to play in Old Trafford.

Fans were never satisfied with Mourinho especially his "bus parking" strategy which gives extra priority to defence. Even though he brought three titles to Old Trafford including the Europa League, Mourinho was not in harmony with key players. To publish rumours regarding clash between Pogba and Mourinho was a daily routine for the journalists.

No doubt that Mourinho is one of the best in the business. But United likes to attack and fans wants to see their team scoring again and not on hanging up on one goal lead. Also you cannot expect the quality of Ramos-Pepe and  Terry-Luiz in Smalling-Jones duo. Playing Fellaini instead of Pogba and watching Lukaku blow up chances while Sanchez and Rashford on the bench.... Seriously?

Ole, as a former United player knows well the capabilities of the Red Devils. When your team do not have a good defence, then just follow the philosophy "offense is the best defence." Manchester United are now playing with more possession and scored 14 goals from just 4 games.

Source Manchester United Facebook Page MUFC

Ole unlocked Pogba and gave him a free role in the heart of their midfield. With the help of Matic and Herrera in the midfield, Pogba can concentrate on attack. Pogba scored 4 goals and provided 3 in United's last 4 matches. The recent form of Pogba also shows the lack of harmony between him and Mourinho.

The front trio of Martial-Rashford-Lingard is on fire especially Rashford. The England youngster showed his potential and Lukaku must do something special to replace him in the striker position.

Source Manchester United Facebook Page MUFC

De gea got his much deserving cleansheet in the last match against Newcastle United. According to reports, Ole wants to tie down the Spaniard with a contract extension.

United currently stands on sixth position below the Gunners. They are aiming for a top 4 position and Champion's League qualification. United will face PSG in February hoping for a quarter draw.


Welcome to Premier League Matchday 21 of 38. Liverpool travels to Etihad Stadium to take on Manchester City which gonna be title deciding clash. The Reds are currently leading the point table with 54 points and City stands on third with 47 points.

The season was full of surprises and twists so far. Manchester City had the advantage rope till their meeting with Crystal Palace and Leicester City. Two consecutive defeats dragged them from top to third. They bounced back against Southampton and are ready for the ultimate battle tonight.

Situation of Liverpool is completely different. They are proving in each and every day that they are the deserving Champions in this season. They thrashed Arsenal in their last match with a one-sided score chart ie, 5-1. Liverpool's front trio consisting of Salah, Firmino and Mane shows tremendous fire power in front of goal and not seeming to stop.

Liverpool predicted eleven

Manchester City predicted eleven

PREDICTION : Going with the Reds considering their recent form and record. It's gonna be 3-2 in favour of Liverpool. 

No doubt that this match would be an exciting one. Who will get the sweetest New Year gift? Let's wait and see. #Reds #ManCity