World Football

The Week in Quotes

Eden Hazard of Real Madrid CF reacts.
© Getty Images

"Pele is incomparable. Anybody who wants to compare Pele to any other you know what I do? I hear but I don’t listen. Once I said that Messi is extraordinary. I meant he's extraordinary to the present time and among humans, with his creativity. Pele is out of normal patterns and I'm not saying this because I'm a Brazilian. You can't find a defect. If somebody comes to me and starts to make comparisons, for me it has no credibility."
Brazil coach Tite on comparisons between Pele and Lionel Messi

“He didn’t like to train hard. While we were working he was waiting for us to finish training, just standing there. But on Sundays he was always man of the match, it was unbelievable. He has incredible talent.”
John Obi Mikel on former Chelsea team-mate Eden Hazard

“James is a player that is playing with a motorbike because he is really fast. I have never seen someone in the last period as fast as him, [except] maybe Mbappe. He's unbelievable.”
Hungary coach Marco Rossi on Wales and Manchester United winger Daniel James

"Usually we Finns are introverted, reserved and cannot show our emotions well. That made what happened after the final whistle all the more interesting: the fans stormed the pitch, dozens hugged me, kissed me and said how much they love me. After the celebration with the fans on the pitch, we spent half an hour in the sauna, drinking beer and singing songs, then eating with our families and then in a club in Helsinki, where we celebrated the rest of the night.”
Finland captain Tim Sparv details the Finnish reaction to qualifying for UEFA EURO 2020

"I think that, right now, he's the best striker in the world."
Eden Hazard on Karim Benzema

“Former strikers are the ones that can do it well. Kane has a great interest in it and I wouldn’t be surprised if in years to come he’ll be kicking an NFL football. Knowing Kane - and having worked with him - I know all about his mentality and attitude. I’m sure he could adapt his style to do the job and I wouldn’t put it past him being very successful at it. It’s also not got the physical demands of soccer - kicking at least - so players can go on a little longer.”
Tottenham Hotspur legend Clive Allen, who enjoyed a stint in American football at the end of his career, tips Harry Kane to become an NFL kicker

“I find it hilarious to be honest, especially some of the pictures and stuff my friends send me. On one [headline] it said triple bogey - and I've never had a triple bogey! At least give me an albatross! It's funny.”
Gareth Bale on being dubbed ‘The Golfer’ by the Madrid media

"You have to say [Spurs have] the best stadium in the world. That's the reality. The training ground is also second to none. It probably can only be compared with some American Football training grounds. You cannot compare it with European football at any level."
Jose Mourinho is impressed by his surroundings after taking charge at Tottenham Hotspur

“My passport says: 'Robert Lewandowski, 31 years old'. But that's not how I feel. My best spell is just starting now and hopefully will continue for some more years. The best is yet to come."
In-form Robert Lewandowski makes a vow that will send chills down defenders’ spines

"I can’t imagine myself without a beard – it’s part of my personality. But who cares? If we win the title, I’ll even shave my hair off!”
Italy keeper Simone Del Mestre on vowing to shave off his beard if Gli Azzurri win the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup

"Guti didn't speak to me for three months or so because he ended up on the bench [after I joined Real Madrid]. But at some point we ended up playing together and we had an incredible connection. We knew where the other one was or was going without even looking. He's a phenomenal player - probably the best player I've ever played with. Unreal. He made the biggest impression on me."
High praise for Guti from former Real Madrid team-mate Wesley Sneijder

A powerful celebration from Gini Wijnaldum and Frenkie De Jong as the Dutch take a stand against racism

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