Leroy Sane to Bayern Munich
Photo by M. Donato/FC Bayern via Getty Images

Sane seals move from Man City to Bayern Munich

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We already knew Manchester City’s going to look different next year with David Silva amongst those set to leave the Etihad Stadium, but we now have confirmation that a younger playmaker is following through on rumors he was headed out the door.

Bayern Munich announced the purchase of Leroy Sane on Saturday, one of the top architects of City’s incredible 2017-18 season going home the Bundesliga. Reports speculate that Bayern will pay around $56 million for Sane.

“Leroy has been part of one of the most special periods in this club’s history and he leaves with the best wishes of everyone here at Manchester City,” said Pep Guardiola.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

The rumors of Sane to Bayern extend well over a year, and the German champions are happy to get their man after reports the player turned down a City contract offer as recently as mid-June. There was an apology from the German powers to Man City after photos of the player taking a medical in Bayern kit were put online.

Make no mistake: Bayern badly wanted Sane.

“His speed, his technical quality and his scoring threat make him an absolute top player,” said future Bayern chairman Oliver Kahn. “He also fits very well into our team as a person and as a character.”

The winger turned 24 in January and has double-digit goals and assists in each of his last two full Premier League campaigns. He followed up 10 goals and 15 assists in 2017-18 with 10 and 11 last season.

Bayern has wanted Sane for some time, but the union might’ve become even more appealing to the playmaker when the German giants appointed Hansi Flick as manager.

From FCBayern.com:

“FC Bayern is a great club with big goals and these goals suit me as well. I’m looking forward to the new challenge and can’t wait to train with the team. I know Hansi Flick from the U21 national team, we had a very good relationship there. I want to win as many trophies as possible with FC Bayern, and the Champions League is the top priority.”

The Bavarians already have Champions League-winning quality and the idea of Serge Gnabry on one wing and Sane on the other is exciting.

As for City, it will be interesting to see what they do this summer presuming at least one year of ther two-year European ban is upheld.

The club will still be playing for the Premier League, FA Cup, and League Cup. They could also still be playing for the Community Shield and European Super Cup should they win the FA Cup and Champions League

So it’s not like they won’t need depth but do they rate some of their younger players and we don’t know who might ask to leave given the prospect of no UCL. We know Phil Foden is ready to take the next step, but who else will be coming through the door? Will in-prime players arrive to play for Pep without the prospect of the UCL for at least year? Or will it be older guys looking for a PL crown?

Ramos helps Madrid edge Getafe, increase lead over Barcelona

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BARCELONA, Spain — Real Madrid beat Getafe, increasing its lead over Barcelona to four points with the Spanish league nearing its end as Sergio Ramos scored a late penalty to give them a valuable three points.

[ MORE: La Liga scores, schedule

Ramos converted the 79th-minute spot kick after Getafe made its first mistake in an otherwise flawless defensive performance to stifle the more talented rivals.

Madrid right back Dani Carvajal raced into the area and cut back around defender Mathias Olivera, who tripped him and gave Ramos the chance to score the winner that boosts his team’s chances of dethroning Barcelona.

It was the ninth league goal of the season for the Madrid center back.

Madrid has won all six matches since the restart of the league following a three-month stoppage for the coronavirus pandemic. Barcelona, meanwhile, settled for a third draw in four games on Tuesday when it was held 2-2 by Atletico Madrid.

Real Madrid and Barcelona both have five matches left. Madrid holds the tiebreaker in case of they finish level on points.

La Liga standings

Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
 Real Madrid 33 22 8 3 61 21 40 13-4-0 9-4-3 74
 Barcelona 33 21 7 5 74 35 39 15-2-0 6-5-5 70
 Atlético Madrid 33 15 14 4 43 25 18 10-5-1 5-9-3 59
 Sevilla 33 15 12 6 48 33 15 7-7-2 8-5-4 57
 Villarreal 33 16 6 11 53 40 13 8-5-3 8-1-8 54
 Getafe 33 14 10 9 42 31 11 8-6-3 6-4-6 52
 Real Sociedad 33 15 5 13 50 42 8 9-3-5 6-2-8 50
 Athletic Club 33 12 12 9 38 28 10 9-4-3 3-8-6 48
 Granada 33 13 7 13 40 38 2 9-2-5 4-5-8 46
 València 33 12 10 11 41 48 -7 9-7-1 3-3-10 46
 Osasuna 33 11 11 11 40 47 -7 6-5-5 5-6-6 44
 Levante 33 12 6 15 41 46 -5 8-4-4 4-2-11 42
 Betis 33 9 10 14 43 54 -11 8-4-5 1-6-9 37
 Valladolid 33 7 15 11 27 37 -10 3-10-3 4-5-8 36
 Alavés 33 9 8 16 32 50 -18 7-5-5 2-3-11 35
 Eibar 33 9 8 16 34 50 -16 7-2-8 2-6-8 35
 Celta Vigo 33 7 13 13 32 42 -10 5-6-5 2-7-8 34
 Mallorca 33 8 5 20 35 56 -21 7-3-7 1-2-13 29
 Leganés 33 5 10 18 24 49 -25 4-4-9 1-6-9 25
 Espanyol 33 5 9 19 27 53 -26 2-5-9 3-4-10 24

 

VIDEO: Bernardo Silva doesn’t applaud Liverpool in ‘guard of honor’

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Bernardo Silva didn’t applaud Liverpool in the ‘guard of honor’ Man City gave them and couldn’t get off the pitch quick enough.

Silva and his teammates lined up on the pitch before the game at the Etihad on Thursday and welcomed the newly-crowned champions by flanking them on both sides.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights

Every other Man City player gave Liverpool a round of applause, which will be expected from each team Liverpool face in the rest of the Premier League season as they won the title with seven games to go. It will be intriguing to see if other teams and players have a similar reaction to Silva.

Bernardo Silva was not having it, though, as he sipped on a drink, look disinterested and started walking to the benches before most of the Liverpool team had got past the end of the line.

Check out the video clips below of Silva showing perhaps why Man City went on to batter Liverpool 4-0 in the game as he looked angry and most of the Man City players looked far from pleased that they had to applaud Liverpool onto the pitch.

These rivals are a lot closer than the current 20-point gap in the table suggests and given the flashpoints which arrived throughout the game, Man City will be coming back even stronger next season to challenge Liverpool for their title.

Guardiola, Klopp disagree on gap between Man City, Liverpool

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Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp believe Man City and Liverpool are in very different places.

Very, very different places, according to the post-game reaction of Guardiola and Klopp.

[ MORE: Klopp happy with Liverpool ]

Asked by ProSoccerTalk after the game if Man City’s 4-0 win against Liverpool proves they aren’t that far behind the new Premier League champions ahead of the 2020-21 season, this was Guardiola’s response. Seriously, it was this long.

“The gap to Liverpool is more than 20 points. That is the difference between one team and the other one,” Guardiola said via Zoom. “It is 20 points. Like two seasons ago it was 25 [in favor of Man City], now it is 20 points for them. That is the reality. That result is not going to be confused with my players as to what is the reality. They were incredible, much better than us. We are not consistent and we have to recover the consistency that we had the previous seasons. It doesn’t matter anywhere we play. We take a result and points. But I am happy today because we beat a team who are the Champions of Europe and England. Like, they were really incredibly focused to beat us. I saw their faces, the way they shout, the way they communicated, they way they won it and that’s why. They didn’t come hear to celebrate absolutely anything.

“I think they celebrated and they are going to celebrate but I think they drank enough beers in the early days of the week but they came here to compete against us, without a doubt, and that is why for us, to prepare Arsenal and [Real] Madrid, it will be so important, this game, to take confidence and say ‘okay, we can do it’ but next season will be completely different. Everyone starts from zero and you have to show, first to Liverpool but especially for ourselves, that we can do it. That we can do what we have done these last few years, winning a lot of titles in many different competitions.”

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights

ProSoccerTalk then asked Klopp what he thought about Guardiola pointing out the 20-point gap between Liverpool and second-place Man City?

“If anybody thought before that game that the quality gap between Liverpool and Man City is 20 or 23 points, I cannot help these people. That is how it is,” Klopp smiled. “Football is not about that. Football is about winning games and we did that, in a pretty impressive manner, to be honest. I saw pretty much all of the Man City games and even the games they lost were good. Unbelievable. It is the truth. It was not that they didn’t perform or whatever. They had moments when the opponents scored and that was tonight the case.

“We had our situations and if you’ve watched us before, you know we score in situations like this, more often than not. Tonight we didn’t. Not at all. Then to concede a penalty… I was really happy with the start of the game, to be honest. We were there, we were completely in the game, we pressed them, it was not comfortable for them. It was a good game. Both teams pressed high. Both teams tried to play football. When do you see that? You don’t see that a lot of times. In the very decisive moments, City was better tonight. You can see that in the result. We cannot change that. If anybody thought we were 20 points better than City, I cannot help them.”

This reaction from Guardiola and Klopp is somewhat predictable given their respective situations.

With six games of the season to go, Man City will finish a long way behind Liverpool in the table but don’t let that deceive you.

Pep Guardiola wants you to think they are a long way back to Liverpool which will in turn make his players think that and they will come back hungrier and fitter next season. Not to mention for the FA Cup semifinal against Arsenal and their Champions League clash against Real Madrid.

Jurgen Klopp wants you realize that Liverpool’s season has been incredible but it is not a true reflection as to their quality compared to Man City’s.

The real answer? Probably a bit of both. Man City and Liverpool are the clear title contenders and will be again next season but the result on Thursday proved they are very evenly matched. Well, they are closer than the current 20-point gap anyway.

Klopp perturbed after champions Liverpool blown out at Man City

Jurgen Klopp reaction
Photo by LAURENCE GRIFFITHS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images
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“It’s all okay. It’s not nice. It’s not what we wanted.”

Jurgen Klopp was ornery after Liverpool were blown out of the Etihad Stadium in a 4-0 loss on Thursday.

The manager did not like a line of questioning after the huge loss, which came in the first match after the Reds clinched their first Premier League title in 30 years.

[ MORE: Man City 4-0 Liverpool ]

But you know the German wizard is a massive competitor. He took umbrage at the idea that Liverpool’s spirit was anything other than what it showed in the run-up to its title.

“I saw brilliant attitude, boys who were fighting with all they had,” Klopp said of the loss. “We didn’t behave (poorly). We lacked fluidity and in some situations, 50-50, they were just quicker than us. Then the pitch becomes big immediately. The first goal felt like five minutes along in a challenge with Sterling. There must be a second player. They used their chances not all but a lot. It it was 5-3 or something I would be positive as well. It’s a 4-nil and we had to take that.”

Klopp felt that there was a narrative being pushed that the Reds lost 4-0 because they were content with their title or still hungover.

“If you want to lead this story that we were not here with our focus. That’s the second time. I said I liked my team. It’s clear. We proved our point and that City is an incredible team. … By the way I do that always. I saw City’s season. I didn’t see a bad game. Even when they lost.”

The Reds are still the champions and a lot of the surprise from his anger probably comes from the fact that we’re just not used to seeing him after defeat.