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Pellegrini bids adieu to Etihad Stadium: “I will never forget” the fans

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Manuel Pellegrini will leave Manchester City at season’s end, his predecessor determined earlier this year when Pep Guardiola agreed to a pre-contract.

And the well-liked manager seemed a bit emotional after a 2-2 draw against Arsenal in his final home match as City boss.

[ MORE: Man City 2-2 Arsenal | Update on Welbeck ]

Later saluted by rival manager Arsene Wenger as a respected man who is “liked by everybody”, Pellegrini implored his fans to stay the course.

From the BBC:

“For me it’s been three wonderful, unforgettable years. Thanks to the fans for all, I will never forget you. Don’t change, because this team needs you and I’m sure next year you will do well in all competitions.

“Thank you all, I will see you.”

He’s a classy man, and part of us hopes there’s a landing spot somewhere in the Premier League for the Argentine. He’s been hard done-by at City, although turning down Pep Guardiola is a difficult thing for any club.

Godspeed, Manuel.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MAY 08: Manchester City fans show their support to Manuel Pellegrini, Manager of Manchester City during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester City and Arsenal at the Etihad Stadium on May 8, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

Leipzig doubles up Koln behind Werner’s 25th

Koln v. Leipzig recap and video highlights
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Timo Werner hit 25 goals for the first time in his Bundesliga career and Christopher Nkunku continued his fine season as RB Leipzig overcame hosts Koln 4-2 in a Monday thriller.

Leipzig moves third with the win, moving onto 58, after Patrik Schick scored his ninth goal in 18 league matches to open the contest. Dani Olmo also scored for the victorious visitors.

[ Bundesliga: Fixtures, box scores ]

Jhon Cordoba and Anthony Modeste scored for Koln, whose top six hopes take a big hit. The Billy Goats remain 11th and are now closer to the drop zone than sixth.

Only Robert Lewandowski of Bayern Munich has scored more league goals (29) than Werner.

[ MORE: Sancho honors George Floyd after scoring ]

A great early save from Timo Horn on Timo Werner preceded Koln’s opener.

Elvis Rexhbecaj timed his run well and knifed to the near post, where he shot through the legs of Leipzig goalkeeper Peter Gulacsi.

The ball hit the post and skittered into the box and Gulacsi could only get a piece of Cordoba’s left-footed attempt.

Leipzig leveled when Upamecano dribbled up the heart of the pitch before finding Man City loanee Angelino on the left for a perfect cross and Schick header. Angelino had an exceptional day on the left flank.

Leipzig took its lead in the 38th minute with a deft finish from Nkunku, who took Konrad Laimer’s perfect feed and popped it over a charging Horn for 2-1.

Werner finished off a lightning counter as Gulacsi collected a free kick and hit a perfect punt to the league’s second-leading scorer.

That was far from the end of the fun.

Modeste hit an absolute hammer to make it 3-2, but Leipzig restored the two-goal advantage when Olmo hit a seeing-eye shot through the traffic to cap three goals in seven minutes between the two sides.

French striker Modeste won a penalty that was denied by VAR with under 20 minutes to play, he then missed wide after beating the keeping one 1v1 break with four minutes to play.

Americans Abroad: American midfielder Tyler Adams continued his streak of playing in every Leipzig match since the break when he came off the bench just before the hour mark.

Adams hit 94 percent of his 18 passes, drawing three fouls, making an interception, and winning three of four duels.

Reports: Messi to stay at Barcelona as exit clause expires

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Lionel Messi is going to spend at least one more year with Barcelona.

The world’s best player had an exit clause in his contract that allowed him to leave without a transfer fee, but that expired at Midnight according to Marca.com.

Messi has 19 goals and 12 assists in just 22 La Liga appearances this season, one of just four players in Europe’s top five leagues to collect double-digit goals and assists (Jadon Sancho, Serge Gnabry, Alassane Plea).

It had been reported since November that Messi would not exercise his option to leave the club, but there were numerous reasons to think he might rethink things given problems at Barcelona.

[ MORE: Remaining PL schedule in full ]

There been chaos in the board room and players including Messi were angry to be thrown under the proverbial bus when Ernesto Valverde was fired early this year.

Notably, he called Barcelona “home” but noted “weird things happening” at the Camp Nou.

And there were, with the club denying accusations it used an outside firm to slander current and former players on social media. The club saw six board members resign in April.

Wouldn’t you love to be a fly on the wall for the calls that headed to his reps from clubs across the world?

Major League Soccer releases statement on murder of George Floyd

MLS statement on George Floyd
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Major League Soccer released a statement Monday expressing grief at the death of George Floyd, saying it stands “united with the black community through our country.”

Floyd, an African American man, was killed Monday in Minneapolis, Minn., and there have been widespread protests across the United States.

[ MORE: MLS owners threaten lockout ]

A video showed former Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin, putting his knee on George Floyd’s neck for more than 8 1/2 minutes. Chauvin was arrested last Friday and charged with murder, authorities confirmed.

Tributes to Floyd stood out across the soccer world this weekend, where Borussia Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho and Achraf Hakimi revealed messages of support on their jerseys.

VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Elsewhere, USMNT midfielder Weston McKennie wore an armband saying ‘Justice for George’ and Borussia Monchengladbach’s Marcus Thuram took a knee after he scored in the Bundesliga. Stars for Liverpool and Manchester United made public statements Monday as well.

Here is the full statement.

The entire Major League Soccer family is deeply saddened and horrified by the senseless murder of George Floyd.

We stand united with the black community throughout our country and share in the pain, anger and frustration.

We hear you.

We see you.

We support you.

We are committed to use our voices and the platform of our League, our Clubs and our players to continue to champion equality and social justice.

LIVE, Bundesliga: RB Leipzig visits Koln

Koln v. RB Leipzig how to watch
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RB Leipzig aims to go third in the Bundesliga when it visits the Billy Goats of Koln at the Mungersdorfer Stadium on Monday.

Kickoff is at 2:30 p.m. ET as Leipzig enters the match in fifth with 55 points, one behind third-place Borussia Monchengladbach and five back of second-place Dortmund.

[ Bundesliga: Live scores | Sancho honors George Floyd after scoring ]

Koln is in 11th place and still harbors hopes of the Europa League, eight points back of sixth-place Wolfsburg.

American midfielder/defender Tyler Adams is on the bench after starting two of three matches since the Bundesliga restart and playing in all three.

Matchweek 29 in the Bundesliga will again see games played in empty stadiums, which is the plan for the rest of the season and beyond. If you’re new to Germany’s top-flight, here’s a guide to help you pick a club to support.

How to Watch the Bundesliga

  • When: Monday, June 1 from 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET
  • TV Channel: FS2
  • Stream LiveVia Fox Soccer
  • USMNT or eligible players in action: Tyler Adams (Leipzig)

You can check out the full schedulestandings and find out how to watch the action, while we will have you covered right here on ProSoccerTalk with analysis, reaction and more.