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Virgil van Dijk clearing path for Joe Gomez at Liverpool and
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Message Virgil van Dijk clearing path for Joe Gomez at Liverpool and Répondre en citant
 
sbobet asian England's Joe Gomez sees himself as "a sponge" soaking up lessons from the world's most expensive defender, Virgil van Dijk.

Gomez was injured less than 10 minutes into Friday's head to head with Van Dijk's Netherlands, which England won 1-0 thanks to Jesse Lingard's second-half strike, but will continue to be monitored by the FA's medical staff ahead of Tuesday's Wembley clash with Italy.

Van Dijk's £75m move to Liverpool may have slowed Gomez's long-term ambitions of a move from right-back to centre-half but he does not see his team-mate as an obstacle.

"I didn't see it as blocking my path or anything like that. It's a great opportunity to learn from him," he said.

"I am not overly stressing about it or paranoid about other people coming in. It's great to be in environments where I can learn from players like that. I am just trying to soak it all up and be the best sponge I can be.

"I think he has a great presence, everyone sees that. He is very dominant in the way he plays and his body language shows that he has quality on the ball."

Gomez does not have to look too far for the other side of his football education, sharing Liverpool's Melwood training pitch with the country's top-scorer Mohamed Salah on a daily basis. sbobet asian

Salah has been a revelation since arriving at Anfield last summer, plundering 36 goals in all competitions in his first season in red.

Having also shut out Brazilian star Neymar on his first England start, he is getting used to taking on the very best in the world.

"I'm not sure [who is better], they're both world class," he said.

"They're both incredible players and it's a pleasure for me to come up against such talent.

"It has to be a balance of respecting the ability but also understanding that he's your opponent and you can't be in awe of him, otherwise that might not do you any good.

"I try to learn as much as I can about each opponent and study their threats."

Gomez's next mission at international level to is to win a place in Gareth Southgate's World Cup squad.

If he makes the 23 it would represent a remarkable turnaround. He opted to sit out last year's Under-21 European Championship to build fitness and focus away from the cut and thrust of tournament football. sbobet asian

 



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Message Manchester United's full-back weakness exposed again by West Répondre en citant

 
188bet Manchester United's 1-0 home defeat to West Bromwich Albion was a collective failure, one where Jose Mourinho and almost every one of his players were substandard. As a result, it seems unfair to single anyone out. What is important, though, is to identify a key area where the team have both advanced and regressed, and this is in relation to United's full-backs.

Ashley Young and Antonio Valencia are two of the squad's most reliable performers, defensively diligent from week to week, but there is a sense that their best instincts have long been suppressed.

This isn't something that can be laid solely -- or even primarily -- at the door of Mourinho, since the issue arose some time before his arrival at Old Trafford. The fact is that two players who were among the very best crossers in the Premier League no longer deliver a consistently excellent final ball.

There are probably a couple of good reasons for that. One is that Young, in particular, has lost some of the speed that allowed him to get clear of his man before delivering the ball into the box. Moreover, he is a right-footer playing on the left wing, and so he always has to check back before he releases the ball.

In some games, the unfortunate and cumulative effect is that United concede a good 10 to 15 yards on the left flank in several attacks, since their opponents know that they will not attack the byline with any great aggression. 188bet

The addition of Alexis Sanchez has addressed this issue to some extent, but Sanchez is a right-footer, too, so he also hesitates when cutting inside. This might sound like a small matter, but it is the kind of thing which leads to a greater predictability in United's attack.

Young's loss of attacking flair is partly explained by his growing emphasis on his defensive duties, a fate which appears to have befallen Antonio Valencia.

Valencia's transformation is even more remarkable than Young's -- while Young is widely regarded as a hardworking yet ultimately limited full-back, Valencia has the tools to be the complete right-back. His defending has improved immeasurably and he has the speed and strength to unsettle anyone against him on the flank. He also regularly completes around 90 percent of his passes.

Yet there is a sense that Valencia, though a fine servant -- in so far as such as a concept still exists -- is holding himself back, and has done for some time. During the early part of the decade, he was a regular supplier of superb crosses to the head of Wayne Rooney, providing the striker with so many assists that Rooney scored more goals in a season than he ever had before. 188bet



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Message Ryan Bertrand says Southampton's relegation threat was wake- Répondre en citant
Ryan Bertrand says Southampton's relegation threat was wake-up call

 
sb0bet Jamie Redknapp admits Manchester United's style of play leaves him cold - and says their big-name players are not working in Jose Mourinho's system. United made sure of second place in the Premier League with a point at West Ham but they produced another uninspiring attacking display as they toiled in the London Stadium stalemate. Redknapp was left unimpressed by a display low on "fluidity and joy" and declared them a "long way off" rivals and champions Manchester City.

Speaking from the Sky Sports studio after the stalemate, Redknapp said: "You'd normally say finishing second and reaching the FA Cup final, would be great but when you look at the money they've spent in the last few years and watch how they play... "United fans have been blessed watching some great sides but it's hard to watch this United side. There's not a lot of joy in their play. I still think (Jose's) searching for something when you look at the teams and systems. "The big-name players have not really worked for Jose. Whether they'd work for another manager, I don't know, but they're not working for Jose. He's questioned the mentality of his team often. sb0bet

"I think they're a long, long way off from competing with Manchester City, if I'm honest. It feels like when Jose went to Real Madrid and had to find a different way to compete with Barcelona and disrupt them. "At the moment, when I look at United, I don't enjoy watching them. There's not much fluidity, not much enjoyment. It's difficult to watch." Teddy Sheringham won three Premier League titles and the Champions League with Manchester United and echoed Redknapp as he compared Mourinho's "strategic" style with the self-assuredness of the side masterminded by Sir Alex Ferguson. 

"It's more silverware under Jose Mourinho - that's what they brought him in for - but I don't think anyone can be that impressed with the way they've gone about it, especially again tonight," Sheringham - who also spent three seasons at West Ham - said. "It's the point they wanted but it's not really what you expect from Man Utd, going forward and forcing the issue. "There's an FA Cup final between Manchester United and Chelsea to come but while you'd always expect humdinger between those sides, you know Jose is going to try and win the game in a strategic manner, not in the way Sir Alex would have approached it, saying: 'Show them what you can do, put them under pressure and they'll crack with our intense football'. "It's not like that with Jose. You're breaking down teams and it's not easy on the eye." sb0bet



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