Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney: We want to win the UEFA Champions League

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Fresh off signing his new contract that makes him Manchester United’s highest paid player in history, start striker Wayne Rooney is ready to lead the Red Devils charge towards another UEFA Champions League title.

The Red Devils have won the famous trophy three times in their history, but there has been plenty of heartache in recent years as Rooney has reached three finals (2008, 2009 and 2011) with United but only lifted the title in ’08 when United beat Chelsea on penalty kicks in Moscow.

Speaking before United’s trip to Olympiakos, Rooney is desperate to win more Champions League titles and is urging his team to aim high this season, despite a terrible campaign thus far in the Premier League.

“To win one is never enough I think, especially at this club. You need to keep trying to get into these finals, we want to win,” Rooney said. “The feeling you get when you actually win this trophy is incredible, so there’s no way you want to stop at one. You want to win every year, obviously that is impossible. But if we can go to the final it would be great for us and it’s an opportunity to win the trophy, so hopefully we can do that.”

(MORE: Champions League Preview: Talent not the issue for United against Olympiakos)

With Rooney fired up and his partnership with fit-again Robin van Persie up and running, United look rejuvenated and now boast the extra attacking talents of Juan Mata and Adnan Januzaj to support RVP and Rooney. But his trip to Olympiakos will be a tricky one, as the Athens-based club lead the way in the Greek top-flight and their fans are sure to create a hostile atmosphere on Tuesday night.

It’s safe to say United’s best performances this campaign have come in the Champions League, as David Moyes’ side breezed through the group stages with four wins ans two draws from their six matches. Despite poor form in the PL which sees them languishing down in sixth place, United are the clear favorites for this clash against their Greek opponents.

The fact that Rooney is earmarking a deep run in the UCL this season shows confidence and belief is high in the United camp, so can they keep their good European form going on Tuesday night? It seems like their only chance of qualifying for next years competition is if they win the Champions League, as fourth place is a long way away in the PL.

So, it’s a case of all or nothing from here on out for the Red Devils.

Daly collapses during match, treated for heat illness

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HOUSTON (AP) Houston Dash forward Rachel Daly collapsed during the final minute of a National Women’s Soccer League match against the Seattle Reign as temperatures climbed into the 90s.

The 25-year-old Daly was stretchered off the field and taken to the hospital, where the team said she was being treated for heat illness.

The temperature at BBVA Compass Stadium was 92 degrees at the 3 p.m. kickoff. The Reign won 2-0.

[ MORE: Perisic talking with Man Utd? ]

The NWSL issued a statement that said the league had worked with the Dash before the season to schedule any afternoon games early in the year to help avoid heat issues. The teams took a hydration break late in the match.

“We will immediately review these measures to prevent this situation from occurring in the future,” the statement said.

Reign coach Laura Harvey posted to Twitter: “Proud of the team today. Some of the hottest conditions I’ve seen. Road games are tough but that was crazy.”

MLS roundup: Outrageous dive, posts doom ‘Caps; Ramirez stays red hot

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Six matches are in the books on a busy Saturday in Major League Soccer, and five of them finished 1-0.

How they got there? Much different stories. With the Cali Clasico still to play, let’s dig into the five that followed Seattle 1-0 Portland.

[ MORE: Perisic to Man Utd? ]


Vancouver Whitecaps 0-1 DC United

It’s especially difficult to win on the road in Major League Soccer, unless the hosts fritter away four good chances off the woodwork — including a Cristian Techera PK — and give away a spot kick of their own. Lamar Neagle converted the 61st offering after a sinister dive from Jose Guillermo Ortiz. He was taken off soon after, and is probably going to miss sometime when the DisCo is done with him. Outrageous.

New York Red Bulls 2-1 New England Revolution

Not one, not two, nor three, but four New England players saw a low cross slide by them for Daniel Royer to finish as New York came from behind to take all three points at Red Bull Arena. Cody Cropper committed a gaffe that allowed Bradley Wright-Phillips to equalize after a Lee Nguyen PK had put the Revs ahead early.

Colorado Rapids 1-0 Sporting KC

Homegrown defender and University of Denver product Kortne Ford has his first MLS goal, as the Rapids surprised the Western Conference leaders on Saturday. SKC outshot Colorado by nearly 20 attempts (Shoulder shrug emoji).

Minnesota United 1-0 Orlando City

There were questions as to whether NASL superstar Christian Ramirez could translate his game to Major League Soccer.

Yes. The answer is yes.

Ramirez has eight goals in 13 MLS matches, and should be hearing his name from a certain Bruce Arena around Gold Cup time. Those USMNT dreams of last season should come true.

Bobby Shuttleworth made six saves for his third shutout of the season. All have come at home.

Real Salt Lake 1-0 Philadelphia Union

Joao Plata keeps shooting, and the tiny Ecuadorian menace keeps scoring, too. His 36th minute goal was enough for the hosts at Rio Tinto.

Raiola: Zlatan to “100 percent” stay in Europe for two seasons

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic may be 35 and coming off major knee surgery, but that isn’t stopping suitors from lining up across Europe.

[ MORE: Perisic to Man Utd? ]

Ibrahimovic’s agent, Mino Raiola, says that MLS is not an option for the Swede over the next two seasons. From Sky Sports:

“Many clubs have asked for Zlatan. He can play two more years and will stay in Europe, 100 per cent.”

It would make sense for Ibrahimovic to stay around Manchester United, where he is admired by Jose Mourinho and coming off a season that showed he’s still capable of contributing at a high level.

But he remains beloved in Italy, and would be effective for most clubs in the Top 5 leagues should he return at even 75 percent of the Zlatan we’ve seen regularly.

Report: Manchester United, Inter Milan keen on Perisic deal

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Manchester United wants Ivan Perisic, and both the player and his current club are all about it.

Perisic, 28, is ready to leave Inter Milan, and the Serie A mainstays are happy to accept $46 million for his services according to Sky Sports.

[ MORE: No China for Costa ]

Primarily a left winger, Perisic moved to Inter from Wolfsburg at the start of the 2015-16 season. He scored 10 goals and added nine assists in Serie A play this season, and has kept up his production pace since moving from the Bundesliga to Italy.

United needs stars and depth for its Champions League campaign, and Perisic would buttress an attack with Marcus Rashford, Henrikh Mkhitaryan amongst others. He was a difference maker for Croatia at EURO 2016, and can do the same at Old Trafford.