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Under pressure, Fed faces an outlook clouded by trade wars and signs of weakness

WASHINGTON ( ) – U.S. President Donald Trump’s attacks on the Federal Reserve have broken one set of precedents, his talk of stacking the central bank with political allies has strained another, and his on-again off-again tariff threats have made the economic outlook harder than ever to predict.

While the Fed may well find reason to cut interest rates in recent weak job and inflation readings, doing so could also put a safety net under Trump policies that, to the eyes of many policymakers, have to date done more harm than good.

“There is a kind of feed the beast aspect to it,” said former Fed vice chair Alan Blinder. “Among the many things the Fed has to take as given is trade policy. And if in fact trade policy is going to push the economy into a slump, that is a reason to cut interest rates … If the Fed comes in to bail him out you encourage bad behavior.”

Fed Chair Jerome Powell and other officials insist they can only consider what is happening in the economy and the appropriate policy response, and not try to second guess what the administration does or might do.

Trump on Monday renewed his attacks on the Fed, claiming that central bank policy put him at a disadvantage in his trade negotiations with China because that country, with closer political control of its central bank, could devalue its currency or use other tools to offset the tariffs Trump has imposed on Chinese imports.

“Our Fed is very destructive to us… They haven’t listened to me,” Trump said in a CNBC interview. “They’re not my people.”

In fact, Trump elevated Powell to the Fed leadership and appointed three of the other four sitting Fed governors.

Trump has for a year berated the Fed for raising rates and other policy steps that Fed officials say are the best way for keeping the recovery under way. That broke a roughly 30-year run of presidents largely staying away from specific policy recommendations for the Fed, even if they were sometimes generically critical of the central bank.

Earlier this year, Trump threatened a fuller assault by considering the appointment of two highly partisan political allies to the central bank, straying from a tradition of more technocratic appointments.

The surprise announcement in early May of higher tariffs on China and a threatened imposition of levies on Mexican imports added to the minefield the Fed must now navigate.

Though Trump in the end chose not to impose the tariffs on Mexico, the prospect of using an economic lever for the non-economic end of border control showed how in the Trump era policy could shift abruptly for central bankers who try to keep their focus on medium- and longer-term outcomes.

“We take all kinds of things…into account,” St. Louis Fed President James Bullard said last week before Trump called off the Mexican tariffs. “There are some good policies in there. There may be some bad policies in there. But we have to take everything into account.”

NOT IN A BOX

Recent economic data are already complicating the Fed’s job. Policymakers have expected the economy to slow, but also regarded the likely slowing as modest, and not enough to warrant a rate cut.

The story shifted after Trump’s latest trade war salvo.

“I don’t feel backed into a box,” to cut rates, Dallas Federal Reserve bank president Robert Kaplan said last week. But “in the month of April I might have said … I was a little more optimistic that the outlook was firming, and today I will tell you I am more cognizant of risks to the downside. That is a pretty big change in a relatively short amount of time.”

Whether it is enough for the Fed to put a rate cut squarely on the table will become clearer next week. Fed officials will hold their policy meeting on Tuesday and Wednesday, and issue updated rate projections. They will also have to decide whether to maintain their “patient” approach to changing rates from the current range of between 2.25% and 2.5%, or drop that description in a sign that they are open to a move sooner rather than later.

Weak inflation readings like those in a New York Fed report on Monday have already led Bullard to say that a rate reduction was “warranted.” [nL2N23H0PS]

Analysts and markets, though, are split.

Bond markets have been aggressive in pricing in lower rates later this year, and U.S. stocks have rallied hard in the past week on optimism that a rate cut looked more likely, especially after last week’s weak jobs report. Economists at Goldman Sachs and elsewhere, meanwhile, have discounted any pressure from Trump and argue the economic outlook does not yet warrant a rate cut.

Rolling with the punches from political Washington is nothing new. Former Fed chair Ben Bernanke complained when congressional spending caps reduced economic growth just as the U.S. recovery was getting traction and the eurozone was threatening to crack apart.

This problem here is different, though, with the Fed both under political pressure and less certain, week to week, what actions of the White House they may have to take into account.

After years in which U.S. central bankers bemoaned being “th上海夜生活e only game in town” influencing the economy, they may now be nostalgic for those simpler times.

“The Fed has had too much on its plate for a long time,” said Boston College economics professor Peter Ireland. “Powell was taking pains to say ‘trade is trade’ and that is not our business. But he has gotten sucked into it.”

Trump national security aide McFarland may become envoy to Singapore: official

PALM BEACH, Fla. ( ) – President Donald Trump’s deputy national security adviser, K.T. McFarland, is expected to step down and has been offered the position of U.S. ambassador to Singapore, a U.S. officia上海夜生活论坛l said on Sunday.

The move will be seen as a victory for Trump’s national security adviser, H.R. McMaster, who is retooling the national security team he inherited from retired Lieutenant General Michael Flynn, who resigned as Trump’s first national security adviser in February.

McFarland, 65, is a former national security analyst for Fox News and was one of Trump’s original hires after he won the presidential election on Nov. 8.

The exact date of her departure was unclear, said the U.S. official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

News of her pending departure came less than a week after Trump removed his chief strategist, Steve Bannon, from the National Security Council at McMaster’s urging. Bannon had a seat on the council’s “principals committee,” which included the secretaries of state, defense and other ranking aides. Flynn was forced to resign on Feb. 13 over his contacts with Russia’s ambassador to the United States, Sergey Kislyak, before Trump took office on Jan. 20.

McFarland’s expected departure will likely elevate the status of Dina Powell, who is deputy national security adviser for strategy. She had served in Republican President George W. Bush’s State Department, and had advised Trump’s daughter, Ivanka Trump, during Trump’s transition to the presidency.

Trump’s White House has been rife with infighting and palace intrigue as the president has struggled to get past some early stumbles.

U.S. House Speaker Ryan running for re-election: spokeswoman

WASHINGTON ( ) – U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan is running again for the job in the next Congress, a spokeswoman said on Thursday after a media report quoted several unidentified House Republicans as saying they expected him to step down next week.

“He is running,” Ryan spokeswoman AshLee Strong said.

The Hill cited four House Republicans as saying that they expected Ryan to step aside as Speaker after next Tuesday’s general election.

“Speculation is growing that Paul will not return,” the Hill quoted a “senior GOP lawmaker close to leadership” as saying.

It quoted a member of the Freedom Caucus, a group of conservative Republicans, as saying that if Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton wins, Ryan will get “a good share of the blame” among House members who support Republican candidate Donald Trump.

Ryan last month told fellow Republicans that he would not defend or campaign for Trump and would instead focus on re-electing Republicans to keep the majority in the House.

This angered some Trump supporters in the House, who felt the Wisconsin co上海夜生活论坛ngressman should stand by Trump. One of them, Representative Jim Bridenstine of Oklahoma, tweeted: “if Paul Ryan isn’t for Trump, then I’m not for Paul Ryan.”

But Ryan, who as Speaker is the country’s highest-ranking Republican, has a great deal of support in the Republican caucus, and it is far from clear that his critics would be able to oust him if they tried.

House Republicans, who currently number 246, plan to have closed-door leadership elections in mid-November. Ryan is expected to win their nomination for Speaker at that gathering, but the actual election to the Speaker’s post would not be held until the new Congress convenes in January.

All members of the House, both Republican and Democrat, will vote in the Speaker election and Ryan will need 218 votes – a majority of the House’s 435 members – to win. This could be a challenge if Republicans lose a substantial number of seats in next week’s elections, and if some of those who remain decide to oppose Ryan.

UPDATE 4-ANC set to retain power in South Africa but support slips

* Results in from 64 percent of voting districts

* ANC share of vote could fall to 55-59 percent -analysts

* President Ramaphosa trying to halt slide in ANC support

* Jobs, land and corruption were key issues for voters

* For more stories on the elections: (Adds DA, EFF, analyst comment, updates results)

By Alexander Winning and Onke Ngcuka

PRETORIA, May 9 ( ) – Results from nearly two-thirds of voting districts in South Africa’s election put the African National Congress on course to retain power but heading for its worst performance in a national poll in its 25 years in government.

The former liberation party of Nelson Mandela has not won less than a 60 percent vote share since it swept to power in South Africa’s first all-race election in 1994, marking the end of white minority rule.

As of 1840 GMT on Thursday, ballots in 64 percent of 22,925 voting districts had been counted. The early tallies put the ANC on 57 percent in the parliamentary race, with the main opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) on nearly 23 percent and the leftist Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) on nearly 10 percent.

Based on those results, analysts predicted the ANC was set for a vote share of between 55 and 59 percent.

“The ANC result is going to be lower because of voter turnout, which could be the lowest at any parliamentary election since 1994,” political analyst Melanie Verwoerd said. “Turnout has been lower in areas where more black voters live, while the turnout has been higher in the white areas.”

She projected a vote share of 56-57 percent for the ANC.

South Africans voting on Wednesday for a new parliament and nine provincial legislatures had expressed frustration at rampant corruption, high unemployment and racial inequalities that remain deeply entrenched.

“The ANC have taken a hit in the polls — with an estimated near 5 percent loss on 2014 results — due to their failure to address key challenges affecting the South African population,” said Indigo Ellis, Verisk Maplecroft’s Africa analyst.

He cited youth unemployment of 53 percent, among the highest rates in the world.

Analysts have said that a poor showing for the ANC would embolden opponents of President Cyril Ramaphosa and risk a potential challenge to his leadership. The elections are the first test of national sentiment since Ramaphosa replaced scandal-plagued Jacob Zuma as head of state in February 2018.

“As long as the ANC gets more than 55 percent, things will be okay for Ramaphosa inside the ANC,” Verwoerd said.

The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, a government agency, also forecast a decline in support, predicting the ANC would get just over 57 percent of the parliamentary vote and about 50 percent in the provincial polls.

Turnout on Wednesday was just over 65 percent, according to the votes processed so far, the Electoral Commission said.

ANC Deputy Secretary General Jessie Duarte said she expected the party’s vote share to grow as results from larger voting districts filtered through.

Mmusi Maimane, the DA leader, said he was content with his party’s performance so far, while EFF’s chairman Dali Mpofu said the results showed the party to be “the only growing big party”.

At the last election in 2014, the ANC won 62 percent of votes, the DA 22 percent and the EFF 6 percent.

Chief Electoral Officer Sy Mamabolo said the Electoral Commission hoped that results from around 90 percent of voting districts would be declared by 10:00 p.m. local time (2000 GMT), with the remaining results to be released on Friday morning.

RAMAPHOSA BAROMETER

Ramaphosa is trying to arrest a slide in support for the ANC, whose image has been tarnished in the last decade by corruption scandals and a weak economy.

Ramaphosa, who became ANC leader in December 2017 after narrowly defeating a faction allied with Zuma, has promised to improve poor public services, create jobs and fight corruption.

But he has been constrained by divisions within his own party, where some Zuma supporters still retain influence and oppose his agenda.

The ANC achi上海夜生活网eved its best parliamentary election result in 2004 under former president Thabo Mbeki, when it won 69 percent of the vote. But its support fell under Zuma, and it lost control of big cities like the commercial capital Johannesburg in local government elections in 2016.

The party now controls eight of the country’s nine provinces, with the DA in power in the Western Cape. Early results showed ANC ahead in Gauteng province, where Johannesburg and the administrative capital Pretoria are located, while the DA led in the Western Cape, home to Cape Town.

Election officials said voting had in general progressed smoothly but that there had been isolated disruptions caused by bad weather, unscheduled power outages or community protests.

WRAPUP 2-Canada trade deficit shrinks slightly in March on higher oil exports

(Updates with fresh analysts’ comment)

By David Ljunggren

OTTAWA, May 9 ( ) – Canada’s trade deficit in March shrank slightly to C$3.21 billion ($2.38 billion) but was still the 12th largest on record, Statistics Canada said on Thursday, underscoring the challenges still facing exporters.

Analysts in a poll had forecast a shortfall of C$2.45 billion. Statscan revised February’s deficit sharply upward to C$3.42 billion from an initial C$2.90 billion.

Canada, a major crude exporter, has been hit hard in recent years by lower oil prices and higher U.S. energy output, as well as a shift away from producing light trucks. It has posted just two trade surpluses since October 2014.

Exports grew by 3.2 percent with shipments of energy products posting a 7.7 percent gain. Crude oil export volumes, which had fallen by 10.9 percent from November to February, rose by 3.1 percent.

“We’re still not fully dug out of the hole that we put ourselves in the fourth quarter, but at least it’s a nice turn around in the export story,” said Ross Prusakowski, principal economist at Export Development Canada.

Prusakowski said there was modest upside potential for energy prices to increase further in 2019.

Exports of passenger cars and light trucks rebounded by 8.4 percent after dropping in February on lower auto output上海夜网.

Markets were unimpressed and the Canadian dollar held to a near-two-week low of 1.3496 to the U.S. dollar, or 74.10 U.S. cents.

Imports increased by 2.5 percent to a record C$52.26 billion as imports of consumer goods such as clothing, footwear and accessories rose by 6.7 percent. Imports of airliners plunged by 50.7 percent on a slowdown in deliveries of U.S. aircraft.

Stephen Brown, senior Canada economist at Capital Economics, said export volumes looked set to rise further in April.

“We expect trade to make a positive contribution to second-quarter GDP growth,” he said in a note to clients.

Canada’s trade deficit with the world in the first quarter rose to C$10.13 billion, the highest shortfall since the second quarter of 2016.

Canada sent 74.2 percent of all its goods exports to the United States in March. Exports to the United States rose by 1.3 percent while imports shrank by 0.4 percent and as a result, Canada’s bilateral trade surplus grew to C$3.62 billion from C$2.99 billion in February.

Separately, Statscan said new-housing prices were unchanged in March for the seventh month out of eight, with little or no growth in the major markets of Toronto and Vancouver.

Hughton: “It was a big performance”

Chris Hughton, the Brighton and Hove Albion coach, admitted that he was very relieved after his side managed to pick up a 1-0 victory over Watford at home and it was very important in their fight for avoiding the relegation.

Hughton’s team were winless for seven matches in a row before this fixture started and they failed to score from open play for 10 hours – but they managed to end both of these runs. The coach was happy that his side was a big attacking threat for the guest throughout the whole match and they could have scored more goals than just one.

The talented coach spoke about his side’s performance as he said, according to Sky Sports: “It felt like a big win that today. It was a very good performance, a performance that deserved a win, more than a 1-0 scoreline. Of course, that [second] goal goes in, you are applying that bit more pressure on yourselves, but I thought we were very good today.”Opinion: Martin Odegaard is perfect for the Premier League Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – Given how much he’s been rejected by Real Madrid, we are convinced that Martin Odegaard is perfect for the Premier League.Martin Odegaard is finally…

He also added that he was happy that his side didn’t give any chances to Watford: “When you are playing against a team as good offensively as Watford, and you restrict them to minimal, half chances, it shows you have put in a very good performance defensively. The next phase is to take these games上海夜生活论坛 on and take our chances to make things easier for ourselves.”

In the end, Chris Hughton insisted that this win was very needed: “It is a win we needed. We go to Chelsea on Boxing Day, and while you never know, there won’t be too many people who expect us to pick up anything there. That being the case, it was important we got something out of the game today. We can go into that Chelsea game with that bit more confidence. We just need to make sure that in cases where we have a better chance of getting something, we put in performances like we did today.”

Wenger vs Mourinho

Jose Mourinho accused Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger of lying about Alexandre Lacazette’s fitness before the showdown between the Gunners and Manchester United last weekend

The Red Devils coach claimed the Frenchman wasn’t honest about his striker’s fitness, and Wenger felt like he had to hit back.

It was France international Alexandre Lacazette who wasn’t supposed to feature against United on Saturday, as Wenger had previously stated he wasn’t in the right condition to play. Not only has he played, the striker managed to score.

As the former Lyon star’s presence put pressure on Mourinho’s men, he accused Pep Guardiola of being similarly dishonest when the Manchester City coach said David Silva isn’t ready to play on Sunday.

The Manchester United manager took his shot at Wenger and Guardiola during a press conference,上海夜生活论坛 when assessing his injured players after their 2-1 Champions League victory over CSKA Moscow on Tuesday.Solskjaer “very pleased” after another failure to win George Patchias – Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said he was “very pleased,” even though United failed to win yet again.It is now ten games on the road since…

“The truth is Eric Bailly, no chance for the weekend, Phil Jones a chance, [Marouane] Fellaini a chance, Zlatan [Ibrahimovic] a big chance and [Nemanja] Matic is injured but will play for sure. [Michael] Carrick no chance,” Mourinho said.

“I’m telling the truth, he’s injured but will play for sure. No stories of Lacazette or David Silva. All the truth.”

Once Wenger heard what the Portuguese coach had to say, he couldn’t not comment on the issue, and he replied to Mourinho’s claims during a news conference ahead of Arsenal’s Europa League game against BATE.

“I though he wouldn’t play, yes, but in the end, he could play. What did you want me to do, to leave him at home?” the Frenchman replied.

“I’m always honest and I thought really he wouldn’t play. He had a test on Friday morning and we were not sure he would play. After he tried, and he played. That’s part of football,” Wenger said.

Pogba: We need to win

Paul Pogba tried to motivate his fellow Manchester United players ahead of their derby against local rivals and league leaders Manchester City

The France international will not play in the Red Devils’ important match due to the suspension he picked up against Arsenal. However, Pogba has urged Jose Mourinho’s side to take the game to Pep Guardiola’s men on Sunday, when they meet in the English top-flight.

The United playmaker encouraged his club to throw bodies forward, as they need a win to get closer to their rivals in the league table. He said United must attack during the whole game.

“We need to. To win those games you need to give everything. You need to be there offensively, defensively. Kill the game when you have one chance because they are City and they have quality as well in front and they can kill the game at any time,” Pogba explained.Solskjaer “very pleased” after another failure to win George Patchias – Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said he was “very pleased,” even though United failed to win yet again.It is now ten games on the road since…

“They are first for good reason because they have been doing great at the start of the season. They keep winning and they didn’t lose one game and obviously mentally they are very strong.”

“I have complete trus上海夜生活t in the team. Even if I am not there, I will be there watching the game giving positive energy and hopefully we are going to win,” he added when asked about United’s chances to win the game.

“I’m very disappointed because I really want to help the team and wanted to be there for this derby because obviously we are playing City and in this moment, we need points and we need to win. It’s an important moment, an important game so, like I say, disappointed.”

“It’s a big derby and the atmosphere is going to be big. We want to win, we need to win as well,” the Frenchman praised the derby.

Preview: Barcelona – Sporting

Sporting’s only chance to qualify from Group D is a win in Barcelona today, coupled with a favorable result in the other match of the group between Olympiakos and Juventus (1x).

Flashscore presents the key facts before the match:

Sporting Lisbon face a 1,250km trip to Barcelona and face a mammoth task in their final group game in this Champions League (CL) campaign. Sporting must win here to stand any chance of qualification from the group. But for them to beat a Barcelona side away from home, who are unbeaten domestically and in the CL so far, whilst also relying on Olympiakos to do a job on Juventus – may be too big of an ask.

Barcelona have already qualified from the group having gained 11 points from their first five fixtures, but do not be mistaken in thinking that they’ll take their foot off of the gas for this one. Ernesto Valverde’s Barcelona have won nine of their last ten at the Nou Camp, and their last defeat in any competition, home or away, was against their rivals Real Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup.

To add more misery to Sporting’s chances, Barcelona have scored three goals in each of their home group games so far (3-0 vs Juventus, 3-1 vs Olympiakos). Furthermore, they remain unbeaten here in the CL since all the way back in September 2013 – a remarkable 23 CL home games.

Jorge Jesus’ Sporting side have not won in Spain in 11 attempts, drawing three and losing the remaining eight games, and m上海夜网ost recently to Real Madrid last season. Meanwhile, Barcelona are unbeaten vs Portuguese teams in their last 15 games, winning 12 and drawing three – with their last defeat to a Portuguese side being back in ‘87/’88!Niko Kovac urges Bayern Munich to remain ‘humble’ Andrew Smyth – Niko Kovac has called on Bayern Munich to stay focused and humble after thrashing Tottenham 7-2 in the Champions League.

Barcelona have managed five clean sheets in their last six CL outings, yet Sporting have scored 27 goals in their last ten away games, which is just short of three goals per game. The last meeting between the two at the Camp Nou ended with a Barca win and both teams finding the net (3-1).

Lionel Messi is on the brink of making history, he is now just three goals away from his century of CL goals, and he will surely be looking to take the match ball home after the game.

Missing players

Barcelona: O. Dembele (muscle injury), J. Mascherano (muscle injury), Rafinha (knee injury), S. Umtiti (muscle injury), A. Iniesta (doubtful), A. Turan (doubtful)

Sporting: J. Silva (knee injury), S. Doumbia (doubtful).

Bonucci expecting a Milan victory in Serie A derby

The Italian is grateful for his time with the Nerazzurri, but hopes to come out as a victor after the clash between Inter and AC Milan.

Leonardo Bonucci has looked back on his spell with Inter Milan ahead of the Serie A derby on Sunday. The Italy international completed a shocking move during the summer as he swapped the Nerezzurri with the Rossoneri in a record €40m deal.

Even though Bonucci is thankful for his great time at Inter, he is expecting a win for his new club AC Milan despite a rather shaky start of the season.

“I arrived when I was 17 years old and had two splendid years in their youth academy, where I really improved a lot,” Bonucci told Tencent Sports.

“They are a good side with some great individual talents and chose an important coach in Luciano Spalletti.

“We’ll have to be very wary and give our best. I would take Antonio Candreva and Eder off the Inter squad, as they are my Italy team-mates and they’re two really great guys.Ernesto Valverde praises Lionel Messi’s “fantastic” impact Andrew Smyth – Ernesto Valverde praised a not fully-fit Lionel Messi’s impact as Barcelona came from behind to beat Inter Milan 2-1 on Wednesday.

“I predict a Milan victory, but I won’t tell you [by] how much.”

The Italian also shared a few words regarding his choice to join the Rossoneri, stating that the new challenge at San Siro is what brought him to AC Milan.

“This stadium is the history of football, the most important arena in Italy. Stepping into San Siro always has an effect on you,

“The Rossoneri project is what pushed me to choose this great challenge. I knew there would be difficulties, but I accepted it because I wanted to challenge myself again.

“The objective is to set no limitations in Serie A or the Europa League. Qua上海夜生活网lification for the Champions League must be the minimum target, as Milan have to play in that tournament every year.”

Messi’s hattrick sends Argentina to World Cup

Lionel Messi scored a hattrick in Argentina’s 3-1 victory over Ecuador, that secured the Albiceleste’s World Cup spot.

Argentina went to Ecuador with one clear objective in their mind – a victory that would seal their qualification to the 2018 World Cup. Despite their last matches being far from convincing, the Argentinian fans were putting all of their hopes on the talents of their best footballer – Lion上海夜网el Messi.

And the number 10 did not disappoint. In a crucial match for the football destiny of his country, Messi delivered – and he delivered big time. Having his own personal reasons on top of the country’s hopes to take part in the upcoming World Cup, Messi scored a hat-trick to overturn a match that Ecuador found themselves leading from minute 1.

For Lionel Messi it was one of the last chances to win a World Cup. If Argentina would have missed the presence in Russia, it’s hard to believe that Messi would have had another realistic chance to lift the trophy in 2022, when Barcelona’s player would be 35.

Argentina needed a victory in Ecuador, as well as other results to play in their favour, in order to qualify directly to World Cup. The pre-match statistics were not encouraging for Argentina. The Albiceleste only won once in Quito, where the altitude makes it almost impossible for Ecuador’s opponents to perform at full potential. Also, Argentina failed to score a single goal from open play since November 2016, a less than encouraging statistic going into a decisive World Cup Qualifiers where you need to score.Ernesto Valverde praises Lionel Messi’s “fantastic” impact Andrew Smyth – Ernesto Valverde praised a not fully-fit Lionel Messi’s impact as Barcelona came from behind to beat Inter Milan 2-1 on Wednesday.

Ecuador were decided to make life difficult for Argentina. In fact, they only needed 39 seconds to open the score through Ibarra. However, Messi was not about to give up. And this time, he was not alone. Angel di Maria sent a magical pass in the 12th minute, that found Barcelona’s player in a finishing position. Messi took no chances and finished accurately, levelling the score and keeping the World Cup dream alive.

With the next two goals, Messi proved his commitment to his nation and to the presence at the World Cup. First, in the 20th minute, he chased a loose ball, powering past a defender and sending the ball into the net from a less than comfortable angle. Then, in the 62nd minute, Messi proved his absolute brilliance with a lob that left Ecuador’s goalkeeper, Banguera, stranded.

Messi sealed the 44th hat-trick of his career and perhaps the most important one, in a moment when his country needed him the most. It has to be said that this time, as opposed to the previous few matches for the national team, Messi had help from his teammates. Angel Di Maria, Enzo Perez and Eduardo Salvio all stood out with their performances last night, acknowledging the importance of the moment.

Messi saved the day and took Argentina to the World Cup. But Sampaoli will have a lot of work to do if he wants to achieve any big things in Russia next summer.

Real Madrid preparing huge offer for Spurs’ star

Los Blancos are interested in Harry Kane and willing to spend big to land the striker.

According to sports news outlet Diario Gol, Real Madrid are prepared to launch a huge offer for Harry Kane. As the report states, the La Liga champions are willing to offer money plus one of Gareth Bale, Luka Modrić or Karim Benzema.

The English striker has been in outstanding form since the start of 2017, netting 43 goals in 37 appearances for both club and country. September proved上海夜生活 to be one of the most fruitful months for him as he reached a milestone of 13 goals across all competitions.Donny van de Beek rules out January switch to Real Madrid Andrew Smyth – Donny van de Beek has ruled out a January move to Real Madrid as he plans to see out the remainder of the 2019/20 campaign with Ajax.

It is no secret that some of the biggest European clubs are interested in the forward due to Kane’s impressive and consistent performance on the pitch. However, it is rather surprising to see Real Madrid willing to give up on Luka Modrić, who is considered by many the best central midfielder in the world of football at present. Yet, a potential offer including Bale or Benzema would make more sense given the inconsistent showing of the Frenchman and the high number of injuries of the Welshman.

Preview: Monaco – RB Leipzig

Monaco and RB Leipzig are separated by two points at the bottom of Group G. The French team are last, with two points, while their German opponents are third, with four points after four rounds.

Flashscore present the key facts before the match:

AS Monaco have positive statistics facing teams from Germany in Europe’s premier competition with 7 wins, 2 draws and 2 losses.

When RB Leipzig score in the Champions League (CL) it’s mainly the first half – 4 of their 5 goals in this season’s competition have come in the first 45 minutes and overall they haven’t scored after the 48th minute in any CL match.

After reaching the semi-finals in the last CL campaign, Monaco have failed to shine this season. They haven’t manage to win a single match or score more than 1 goal in the 4 games so far (3 goals in total).

In the last 2 CL matches Monaco have even given away a 1-0 lead, with the opponents turning it into a draw and a defeat, respectively.

Leipzig have lost 5 of 10 competitive away matches this season and have conceded 7 out of 10 goals 上海夜生活论坛in the first half.Koulibaly warns about Genk danger Nedim Maric – The reliable Napoli defender, Kalidou Koulibaly warned his team about Genk’s quality as he’s played for the Belgian side in the past.Napoli opened their…

Despite losing both home matches in the CL, Monaco remain a big threat at home in Ligue 1 (P 6 W5 D1) and have scored 21 scored goals. In 4 of those matches they scored at least 3 goals.

Leipzig have conceded 6 goals in the 1st half of their Bundesliga away matches (4 in the 2nd) and that could be handy for Monaco, as the team has already scored 12 goals in the first 45 minutes of their home matches (9 in the 2nd half) in Ligue 1.

It’s not easy to be leading after 45 minutes against Monaco, as the team were only behind on 3 occasions at half-time this season.

Missing players

Monaco: T. Lemar (shoulder injury), D. Sidibe (injury), L. Badiashille (doubtful)

RB Leipzig: S. Ilsanker (toe injury), F. Coltorti (doubtful).

Benzema blames Ronaldo and Zidane for Real situation

Real上海夜生活 Madrid are going through a real crisis in La Liga. The draw against Atletico has seen them falling ten points below league leaders Barcelona.

Having been identified as a reason for the underwhelming start of the season, Karim Benzema defends himself, saying that manager Zinedine Zidane and Cristiano Ronaldo share the blame for the lack of goals.

Real Madrid have only scored 22 goals this La Liga season, with Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema each scoring only once. The attack’s lack of efficiency has had a huge impact on their standings in the league, where they are currently third, six points behind Valencia and ten behind Barcelona.

Karim Benzema is unhappy with the fact that he has been pointed as the main responsible for the lack of goals and has made his frustrations known to the club’s president, Florentino Perez. According to Diario Goal, the French striker said that the blame should be shared between him, Cristiano Ronaldo and Zinedine Zidane.Ronaldo scores in Juventus’ victory vs Bayer Leverkusen Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – With goals from Higuain, Bernardeschi, and Ronaldo, Juventus defeated Bayer Leverkusen in their second Champions League match.Juventus really needed a victory after the initial…

According to the source, Benzema feels that he would be much more effective if Ronaldo wouldn’t move so often in his area of action, in central positions. Furthermore, the French striker believes that Zidane allows Ronaldo freedom of movement on the pitch because of his superstar status at the club, but this affects the performances of the team.

The report also suggests that Benzema asked Perez to leave the club if the situation doesn’t change. The ex-Lyon striker arrived at Santiago Bernabeu in 2009. He played 378 matches for the club, during which he scored 182 goals.

Benzema started the match against Atletico Madrid (0-0) as a central striker, but didn’t have any goalscoring opportunities during the 75 minutes he spent on the pitch. He was substituted with Marco Asensio, but Real still didn’t manage to win and lost two important points in the title race in La Liga.

United’s manager unfazed by increasing gap with Premier League leaders

The ‘Special’ one insisted things could have been worse for his team.

Manchester United manager José Mourinho insisted he is not worried by the increasing gap between his club and Premier League leaders Manchester City. The Red Devils lost an important game on Sunday with a result of 1-0 against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

United were dominated by the Blues for the greater part of the game and the Blues’ efforts were awarded by Morata with a super header in the 55th minute. Meanwhile the Red Devils had only two shots on target w上海夜生活ith Lukaku being completely isolated in the front.

The defeat on Sunday, together with City’s 3-1 win over Arsenal, increased the gap between the two clubs to 8 points, but Mourinho is not bothered by that fact.Jamie Carragher puts Chelsea over Manchester United and Arsenal Nedim Maric – In an uneventful derby, last night, Manchester United and Arsenal both got point each.Top four-fight this season looks like it’s going to be between…

“We are second not fifth, sixth or seventh,” he told Sky Sports.

“There are 18 teams in a more difficult position. Eight points is eight points.

“We went through a very difficult phase with some of the most important matches without important players. It’s obvious we’ve been through a difficult phase with limitations.”

Updates about Carvajal’s condition

Excellent news are coming from Spain, where it was announced that Dani Carvajal is out of any danger.

The Spanish full-back of Real Madrid was diagnosed with a viral infection of the pericardium and was ruled out of action indefinitely. So far, no news emerged about Carvajal’s situation and there were worries about his general health condition, after the medical staff of Real Madrid said that they don’t know when will the player be ready to play again. He was offered treatment and was kept under supervision by the team’s doctors.

However, AS now announced that the right-back is out of any danger and will return to the first team training sessions very soon. Although the medical team of Real Madrid cannot say exactly when Carvajal will re-join his teammates, rumours suggest that this will happen until the end of October, the player needing at least one more week of rest.Real Madrid injury update ahead of Champions League clash Nedim Maric – Atletico and Real Madrid pl上海夜生活论坛ayed the Madrileno derby last night which finished in a bore 0-0 draw.In the absence of Marcelo and Ferland Mendy,…

Dani Carvajal played 11 matches this season and provided two assists for his teammates. However, he stopped training with his colleagues on the 30th of September, due to the medical condition that was discovered during a routine medical check.

The Spanish right-back signed a new deal with Real Madrid recently, keeping him at the club until 2022. The 25-year-old played 170 matches for Los Blancos, scoring 4 goals and managing 27 assists. His current market value is €32m, according to Transfermarkt.

Ederson’s goal-kick is simply in a league of its own

The Citizens’ goalkeeper made his Brazil national team debut on Thursday.

Ever since arriving in Manchester City from Benfica during the summer, Ederson has been outstanding. The 24-year-old has kept seven clean sheets, conceding only two goals since the start of the season. His great performances have not gone unnoticed as he was called up for the national squad of Brazil, making his first ever debut for Selecao.

Not only did Ederson record yet another clean sheet, but he also did something that very few can do. During the 23rd minute of th上海夜生活论坛e game, City’s shot-stopper produced an outstanding goal-kick that reached the opposition’s box, dropping right at Jesus’ feet.

https://twitter.com/torahiko0803/status/918431655739772928Neville: Pep Guardiola knows Man City aren’t good enough Andrew Smyth – Gary Neville has quashed Pep Guardiola’s claims that Manchester City won’t buy in January as they can’t challenge for trophies without defensive cover.

Speaking to Manchester City’s website, Ederson revealed it was all planned even though it did not work out.

“At the start of the game, I spoke with Gabriel and said that we could score from our first goal kick as Chile were making a lot of pressure.

“I was able to kick the ball to his back. Unfortunately, Gabriel wasn’t able to control the ball, but I am happy for him and for me, as he scored twice and we managed to help with the win.”

Transfer embargo stopped stopped Griezmann from leaving

The ex-agent of Antoine Griezmann has revealed that the Frenchman was really close to United this summer.

The France international would have certainly joined Manchester United if it had not been for Atletico Madrid’s transfer ban, according to the player’s former agent.

Griezmann was a target for a number of European clubs, with the Red Devils being in the leading position for his signature as they submitted a bid close to €100 million in the very start of the summer.

Yet, the 26-year-old confirmed that he would remain at Atletico Madrid since his club needs him now most than ever due to their FIFA-imposed ban on adding new players to their ranks.Report: Mourinho rejects several offers amid Real Madrid talk Andrew Smyth – Jose Mourinho has reportedly turned down several job offers in Europe as he eyes up a potential shock return to Real Madrid.

“Griezmann hasn’t felt able to leave Atletico,” Olhats, who was Griezmann’s manager until September 2016, told France Football . “It showed the integrity of his links with the club, [who were] unable to sign players. Without that上海夜生活网 ban, he would have gone, without a doubt.”

“His omnipresence in the media has not helped him to relaunch himself on a sporting level,” he said. “The balance between the search for performance and the desire to sell your image is very fragile. Unconsciously, you can choose the wrong side.

“There are a lot of aspects of show business in football these days. Antoine is immersed in that inescapable logic at the moment. Now, he’s a footballer, not a singer.

“The press and marketing side of Antoine’s career are handled by his sister Maud, who know all about that. It was decided that Griezmann’s image would take a different path with new methods.”

Arsenal outcast finally out of the Emirates

Lucas Pérez has finally ended his nightmare spell with the Gunners.

The 28-year-old will join Deportivo La Coruna as he stated he was where he wanted to be after completing a loan move from Arsenal.

The 28-year-old has been looking for a way out throughout the whole summer. While it appeared that Wenger’s side is not willing to accept bids below 15 million pounds for his services, the club from north London finally agreed on a €4m loan deal with no option to buy included.

“I’m where I want to be,” Pérez is quoted as saying by Riazor.org.

“I have a right to decide what is going to happen with my future and what I want to do.

“Arsenal understood that and I’m grateful to them. They understood my situation and the fact that I wanted to return home.Top 5 players to watch in Manchester United vs Arsenal Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – Ahead of the most important Premier League match of the weekend, we got the Top 5 players to watch in Man United vs Arsenal.The…

“Arsenal defended their own interests, they initially didn’t want me to return to Deportivo.

“They have reached agreements with many clubs but I clearly told them that my intention was to join Depor and no other alternative.

“I don’t want to give a number but 上海夜网in the last three or four days I spoke to many sporting directors and coaches. But I reiterated that my wish was to return to Deportivo.”

Mbappe chose PSG for first-team opportunities

Kylian Mbappe said that he felt he would have more first-team opportunities at PSG than at Real Madrid.

The young forward was disputed this summer by Real Madrid and PSG, but eventually he chose to remain in France and sign with the Parisians. Now he revealed that the main reason behind his choice was the prospect of playing regularly in the first team: “I felt that at PSG, I would have more opportunities to play than at Real Madrid.”

Speaking to L’Equipe, the 18-year-old also revealed that he held discussions with Manchester City boss, Pep Guardiola, but eventually turned down a move to England: “Guardiola is a coach who breathes football, he won everywhere and he transmits passion and makes you want to play. Drogba tips for Neymar and Mbappe to win Ballon d’Or one day Nedim Maric – One of the best strikers in the Premier League era talked about PSG’s sensational duo and their chances of winning individual awards in the…

When I spoke with him, he explained how he would use me in his tactical system. But I did not say no to Guardiola, I said no to Manchester City.”

Although he eventually switched to Ligue 1 rivals PSG, Mbappe said that he had no intention of leaving Monaco at the end of last season, when they won the title: “I had no intention of leaving Monaco at the end of the season, but things happened and I decided to change my mind and I’ll take the time to explain it later.”

Th上海夜生活论坛e 18-year-old is now looking forward to win trophies with his new team and has set his sights on Champions League: “I dream of winning the Champions League this year, it’s easy to say in September, but what counts is to be able to say it in February. We have a great team on paper, now we’ll have to prove it on the pitch.”