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Teammates appear to stop Marega leaving after racist slurs

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LIBSON, Portugal — FC Porto striker Moussa Marega, who tried to walk off the field after being the target of racist slurs from fans, faced apparent attempts Sunday by his own teammates and opposition players to prevent him from leaving.

Marega, who is black and from Mali, was visibly angered by monkey noises targeting him after he scored Porto’s second goal in a 2-1 win at Guimarães in the Portuguese football league.

But when Marega started to walk off the field, several players from both Porto and Guimarães appeared to argue with him. Porto coach Sérgio Conceição also went on the field and spoke with Marega.

It took Marega several minutes to leave the field when he was substituted.

Marega held his thumbs down at the crowd as he went into the tunnel to the changing rooms. The crowd responded with loud jeers.

The attitude of the other players has drawn criticism on social media.

“We are indignant with what has happened. Moussa was insulted from warmups (before kickoff),” Conceição said after the match.

“We are a family. One’s nationality, color, or height does not matter. We are human beings. We deserve respect and what happened was despicable.”

Marega received a yellow card following his goal in the 61st minute when he appeared to respond to the slurs by pointing at his skin and by picking up a seat that had been thrown on the pitch.

Iker Casillas considering a run for Spanish FA presidency

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According to a report by ESPN FC, former Real Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas has decided to run for the Spanish FA presidency.

Casillas, now 38 years old, is still playing for FC Porto, where he has been since leaving Real Madrid at 2015. However, he has not made an appearance yet this season after suffering a heart attack in May of 2019, and he has already transitioned out of his playing days by working in a liason role for the Portuguese club during his recovery.

The current president, Luis Rubiales, was elected in 2018 and is likely to run for reelection as the incumbent in this year’s election set for this fall. According to the ESPN report, Casillas met with Spanish officials in Madrid over the past few days to lay out his plans for a run at the position.

The report states that Casillas would have the backing of La Liga president Javier Tebas who has been at odds with Rubiales. Casillas would reportedly also have the support of Association of Spanish Footballers president David Aganzo, although Aganzo’s support would be “discreet initially” in the event Casillas decides to withdraw his candidacy.

In order to secure a run for president, Casillas would need the official endorsement of 15% of the 140 members of the assembly. Should he achieve candidacy, he would need a simple majority in the general election to secure the position of president.

Mexicans Abroad: Tecatito shines for Porto; Chicharito close to Galaxy move

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This weekend, there was just as much action off the field as there was on the field for Mexicans abroad.

Jesus “Tecatito” Corona scored one of the best goals of the weekend, while Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez is nearing a move to MLS. 

Chicharito, who is currently at Sevilla, is reportedly meeting with LA Galaxy officials on Monday to negotiate a new contract. The Spanish club have approved a near $10-million bid, a franchise-record for the MLS side. 

Here is a list of several other Mexico national team affiliates making a name for themselves (or not) outside of Mexico this weekend.


Premier League

Raul Jimenez, Wolverhampton Wanderers —  Jimenez had a rare off-game against Newcastle United on Saturday. The forward played all 90 minutes but only registered a shot on target.

La Liga

Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez, Sevilla — Chicharito played the final 12 minutes in Sevilla’s friendly 5-0 win over Escobedo on Sunday. It might have been his final game in Europe, as the 31-year-old striker is set to finalize a move to LA Galaxy soon.

Hector Herrera, Atletico Madrid — Herrera started and played 53 minutes in Los Colchoneros’ Spanish Super Cup final loss to city rivals Real Madrid.

Andres Guardado, Real Betis —  Guardado took the field in the 77th minute for compatriot Diego Lainez in Real Betis’ 3-0 win win over Cub Portugalete on Saturday.

Diego Lainez, Real Betis — The 19-year-old started and played 77 minutes in Betis’ win, recording two key passes and one shot on target.

Nestor Araujo, Celta Vigo — Araujo started and played 82 minutes in Celta’s 4-1 win over Merida in Copa del Rey play. The defender recorded one blocked shot and three interceptions.

Serie A

Hirving “Chucky” Lozano, Napoli —  Lozano is visible not positioned highly in Gennaro Gattuso pecking order. The 24-year-old struggles to get playing time under the Italian. On Saturday, he played a minute in Napoli’s loss to Lazio.

Primeira Liga

Tecatito” Corona, FC Porto — Many may not be speaking about it, but Tecatito is having himself a solid season in Porto. The frenetic, crafty winger scored this beauty over the weekend:

Eredivisie

Erick Gutierrez, PSV Eindhoven —  Gutierrez played the final 45 minutes in PSV’s friendly on Saturday.

Edson Alvarez, Ajax — Alvarez played the final 23 minutes in Ajax’s friendly on Saturday.

Jupiler Pro League

Omar Govea, Zulte Waregem — Govea played the final 45 minutes in Zulte’s friendly on Friday.

Elsewhere around the globe:

Pedro Arce, Panionios –  Panionios were inactive over the weekend.

Gerardo Ramirez Alonso, Roda JC – Ramirez Alonso didn’t feature for Roda JC on Sunday.

Report: Porto, Lyon, Ajax after Canada’s Jonathan David

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Jonathan David may be the next Canadian to play for a top European side.

Porto, Lyon, Ajax, and Benfica are all interested in signing the soon-to-be 20-year-old this winter from KAA Gent, according to France’s L’Equipe.

David wouldn’t come cheap however, as the Belgian side are reportedly asking upwards of $22 million for his services. Porto are reportedly the only team to have submitted an official offer for the Canadian thus far.

The French report states that David is Lyon’s second-choice. Villarreal’s Karl Toko Ekambi, who is also linked to Premier League clubs, is Les Gones‘ main target.

David has spoken publicly about the interest clubs throughout Europe have on him. “Clubs with an interest must speak with my agents,” David told the Belgian outlet Sporza in January. “I am fully focused on Gent and want to win as many competitions as possible here.”

The New York-born forward has had a super season thus far, scoring nine goals and assisting seven times in Belgium.

In December, David was named the Canadian Male Player of the Year after scoring nine goals for the national team in 2019.

Debuting in 2018, David has made 12 appearances for Canada, scoring 11 goals.

Must-See Goal: Porto’s Ze Luis

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The Portuguese first division is filled with some terrific attacking talent, and one of the league’s stars put on an incredible athletic display on Monday evening.

FC Porto forward Ze Luis, who joined the club after four seasons at Spartak Moscow, latched onto a curling cross into the box, chested the ball into the air, and in one smooth motion, fired a strike into the far corner. Assuming FIFA sees this, it should be on next year’s Puskas award shortlist.

Watch the goal below. Porto defeated Pacos de Ferreira, 2-0.