World Football

The Week in Quotes

Franck Ribery (L) of Bayern Munich is hugged by goalkeeper Oliver Kahn
© Getty Images

“I have played against both Madrid and Barca, and you can’t compare Cristiano to Barça’s *Messi. Messi alone is more dangerous than Ronaldo, Bale and Benzema put together."
*Diego Simeone

“It was a long through-ball I ran on to, after which I managed to round the last defender with a feint and dink it over the keeper. Of all the goals I scored at the World Cup, that was the one I liked best."
James Rodriguez telling * he actually preferred his goal for Colombia against Japan at Brazil 2014, rather than his FIFA Puskas Award-winning strike versus Uruguay - which recieved a massive 1.38 million votes from fans

"He is without a doubt the best coach I have ever had. I have never met a trainer who knows so much about the game. The level of detail he can go into... We learned a lot in his first season here and things are going even better now we fully understand him."*
Franck Ribery on Pep Guardiola*

"Guardiola has definitely not reinvented football. He clearly has two major qualities. For starters, he can analyse a game incredibly well. Plus he is capable of making changes during a game that can be decisive. However, coaches should also praise their players every now and then. You cannot be critical of your players all the time after a successful game. At some stage, the players will not take it seriously any more."
*Oliver Kahn is less complimentary of the Bayern coach *

"I have children and this is not the sort of example that a father should set."
*Philippe Mexes on his violent reaction and subsequent red card against Lazio *

“Women’s hockey will never be men’s hockey and we will never be the NHL. Neither do I think that women’s football has to be the same as men’s. For me it’s a more entertaining game. I find female football players are tougher. They seem to battle on the field. They play with a lot of passion and there’s a lot more room out there when you are not as big as the men.”
Four-time Olympic gold medal-winning Canadian hockey star Hayley Wickenheisercomparing the difference between the men and women's games in both football and her own sport with

"To finish the first half of the season in 17th place felt like going on holiday on a bed of nails.”
*Jurgen Klopp reflects on a winter break mulling over Borussia Dortmund's poor performances so far in the German Bundesliga*

*Manuel Neuer with his slightly shorter wax doppelganger in the Berlin Madame Tussauds *

"I forgive Cristiano Ronaldo. I hold no grudge. He hit my legs and my mouth, nothing more. I don’t want to hurt him and I hope that he remains the best player in the world."
Cordoba's Edimar, whom Cristiano Ronaldo struck to earn a red car

“I started putting weight on a few years ago and I wear black clothes to cover it up. It’s as simple as that. I think I wear them pretty well, don’t I?”
Congo coach Claude Le Roy reveals to FIFA.comwhy he always wears black on the touchline

“Three years ago, no. It just shows you how you can never tell in life, and even more so in football. We (Barcelona) had a very intense rivalry with Mourinho. It never reached the level of hatred, not even close, but there were disagreements with him and [John] Terry too. Chelsea were always the team that I most wanted to beat."
*Cesc Fabregas on whether he ever saw himself signing for Chelsea and playing under Jose Mourinho *

“He’s got an odd way of playing, particularly when he’s winning. He’s always making gestures on the field, especially when he’s in front. Nobody likes to lose and these things irritate you.”
*Atletico Madrid's Gabi on Neymar *

"People don't know him but the truth is that Mario is an insecure boy, and it's down to his insecurity that maybe he does stupid things."
Liverpool striker Mario Balotelli's agent Mino Raiola

"Sunday used to be the most beautiful day of the week, I went on the pitch and did what I liked best.”
Argentine playmaker Juan Roman Riquelme on deciding to hang up his boots at the age of 36

“[My grandfather] used to wake me up when I was due to play football saying ‘Come on little boy, it’s Sunday and you have to play the most beautiful sport in the world.’ Those things stick with you, I adapted it slightly and I’ve used it ever since.”
Chilean commentator Luis Omar Tapia, reveals the origin of his famous cathphrase 'It’s the beginning of 90 minutes of the world’s most beautiful sport' to - which he has used for two decades.

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