Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola backs Alexis Sanchez to succeed at Inter Milan

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Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola has backed Alexis Sanchez to succeed at Inter Milan after his forgettable stint at Manchester United.

The Chilean played under the Catalan boss at Barcelona and the duo maintained a healthy relationship, with Guardiola having tried to sign Sanchez before his move to United. The Spaniard still rates the forward highly and has tipped him to succeed in Italy.

“I know him,” Guardiola said according to Goal. “We worked together in Barcelona – I have a special affection [for him] as a player, of course, but especially as a human being. He’s an incredible, humble guy and a fighter.

“Now he has decided to move to Italy with one of the greatest teams in Europe right now with Inter, [who have an] incredible manager with Antonio Conte, and I’m pretty sure they are going to do well.

“I think the way Inter play suits him perfectly. Playing close to Lukaku and, in this position, I think he is going to have a good period in Milan.”

Guardiola also maintained that Sanchez is not solely to be blamed for what went wrong at United last season.

“Football doesn’t depend on one player,” the Catalan coach went on. “You judge it was a failure for Alexis, but there are many reasons.

“They don’t play alone – it’s not tennis, it’s not golf. To play with 10 players against one system, against opponents, against many, many things that are involved in one player performing well in the team.

“I don’t know what happened, I was not there, I will not be there, so that’s why I cannot give my opinion – but I am not thinking it is just for one reason.”

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Crystal Palace chairman Steve Parish will let Wilfried Zaha leave in next transfer window

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Wilfried Zaha

Crystal Palace chairman Steve Parish will let Wilfried Zaha leave the club in the next transfer window as he believes the forward deserves to play for a bigger club.

The 26-year-old wanted to push through a move to Everton this summer but Parish believes Zaha can do better and will let him go to the right club if he can find a replacement.

“I’m sure it has a happy ending for everybody,” Parish said in the Daily Mail. “That’s what I want to generate and I’m sure we’ll make that happen.

“We’ve all been young, but the situation was not right for anybody this summer. You think at the time it is, but I wouldn’t put a cap on this kid’s talent.

“I’ve watched him every week for 10 years, he scored the goal in the first game after we bought the club when he was 16.

“So there’s even a bit of me that wants to see what he can do at a top club, and I certainly wouldn’t want to be the person who stopped that.”

Zaha came through the ranks at Palace, making his debut in 2010. He joined Manchester United in 2013 but struggled to break into the first team at Old Trafford and returned to Selhurst Park, initially on loan, before rejoining on a permanent deal in 2015.

The Ivory Coast international signed a contract extension last summer which ties him to Palace until the summer of 2023.

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Real Madrid rebuffed, Man United and Chelsea ignored - Mauricio Pochettino says he is committed to Spurs

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Mauricio Pochettino

Mauricio Pochettino has turned down a number of job offers from elsewhere during his five years at the Tottenham helm, but insists his commitment to the club has never wavered.

Pochettino’s success in leading Spurs to the top of the English game, spending a fraction of what other clubs have spent, has seen him coveted for some top jobs, both in England and abroad.

Chairman Daniel Levy rejected an approach from Real Madrid last summer while Chelsea and most recently Manchester United also put him at the top of their shortlist.

Pochettino’s future has come into the spotlight again this week amid speculation he is planning on walking away from Spurs after this weekend’s north London derby against Arsenal whatever the result.

The Argentinian, who is one year into a fresh five-year contract, was baffled by the “stupidity” of the rumour and reiterated his contentment at being at Spurs.

Asked whether he had ever been tempted by the “plenty” of offers to leave Spurs, he replied: “No. No because last year when I signed the contract here it was because I wanted to help the club to finish the stadium, to move into the stadium.

“That was my personal commitment with Daniel. In this moment one year ago it would have been easy to say, ‘OK, we’ve been here four years, let’s find another challenge and move on’, because always people at Tottenham will remember us very nicely.

“But we showed our commitment with the club and personally with Daniel because we knew it was going to be a difficult summer, impossible to sign players, impossible to move players and we had to keep the same squad while trying to deliver the job.

“(There have been) plenty. Plenty in five years and Daniel knows. From everywhere.

“Daniel knows very well how our commitment with the club is. It’s massive, it’s more than what is normal.

“But it’s normal that different managers for sure, if you ask (Pep) Guardiola, if you ask (Jurgen) Klopp, if you so ask the best managers…For sure Guardiola is working in City and receives a call from a different club.

“Or like Klopp or like a different manager. It does not make it special to me.”

Pochettino has cut a frustrated figure this season, regularly distancing himself from issues at the club and unhappy at how his squad has been affected by the late closure of the European transfer window.

He held clear-the-air talks with chairman Levy on Thursday night and is ready to move on and attack the new season.

“It was a very good exercise to have better communication, to make clear the things,” he said of his dinner with Levy, his assistant Jesus Perez and a fourth unnamed club official.

“Always the intention was to help the club. The intention in my posture or my speech or my decision was always to try to make the best for the club.

“There were no personal intentions. It was always trying to help the club, help the team, that is our principle objective and it was good to listen from Daniel that we are on the same page, that is the most important.

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“But now we need to try to push again. That is why we need to be on the same page – the club, Daniel and us in our vision and plans for the future.

“I only tried to explain the situation, it is because I care about the club and Daniel and our personal relationship. It’s not because I am a coach and if I am here I am here and if we don’t I get sacked and go home.

“The fact I have a four-year contract, or more is not the point.

“I am very happy to be here, very proud.

“Five years ago we signed for and started a project at a very different club – and now we are one of the best clubs in the world.

“We have played in the final of the Champions League and now the aim is to remain competitive for the future.”

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