Ribeiro: I would suit Manchester United midfield

The Brazilian playmaker, linked with the champions after helping Cruzeiro to their first title in 10 years, believes he would slot seamlessly into the Red Devils’ midfield

Cruzeiro midfielder and reported Manchester United target Everton Ribeiro says he would thrive in David Moyes’ side as he continues to be linked with a move to Old Trafford.

The Brazilian club had been forced to rebuff rumours that the 24-year-old was primed to join the Red Devils, insisting he would not leave the club in January.

But now Ribeiro has fuelled speculation by sharing his admiration for the Premier League champions and suggesting he would be a perfect fit for the United midfield.

“I already watch the Premier League games,” Ribeiro told ESPN Brasil. “They are great teams that play in Europe. They are the dream of any player.

“I feel I am ready to play in any part of the world. If you play for Cruzeiro, you can play in any place.

“United have [Shinji] Kagawa, [Wayne] Rooney, [David] De Gea is the goalkeeper. I know them very well because I play with them a lot in video games as they are a great team. You play it one day after the other and know the players even better.

“I would fit in any part of the midfield. I would do well as a playmaker to support the attack.

“I let my agent and Cruzeiro talk about that. When they feel it’s good for both parties, they will let me know. I’ll see and we’ll analyse everything.”

Ribeiro, who is likely to command a price of around £15 million, added to Gazeta Esportiva: “There is always speculation after a great performance in a competition, but I am a Cruzeiro player.

“I’ll rest a lot, enjoy the holidays with my family and return fully charged in January. I let Cruzeiro and my agent handle the negotiations.”

Everton could extend Deulofeu loan from Barcelona, reveals Martinez

The young attacking midfielder, who scored the equalising goal against Arsenal on Sunday, has surprised the Toffees boss with his quick adaptation to English football

Everton boss Roberto Martinez has revealed that his side have an option to extend Gerard Deulofeu’s loan from Barcelona into 2014-15, should the Catalan club agree.

The Spanish attacking midfielder netted a late equaliser against Arsenal on Sunday, his second goal since arriving at Goodison Park in the summer, and the Toffees boss hailed the speed of his adaptation to English football.

“We have an agreement to extend the loan for an extra year if Barcelona don’t need Deulofeu,” Martinez told reporters.

“He has incredible pace and I’ve never seen a player so quick with the ball. You’ve got certain players with raw talent who can create from nothing with a special touch and he is one of them.

“I always thought he’d take until February to learn how to deal with the league but he’s surprised me.

“He’s very arrogant in the right way and [Sunday]’s finish is exactly what he deserves.”

Ross Barkley was another standout performer as Everton held the Premier League leaders at the Emirates, prompting renewed talk about the youngster’s potential inclusion in England’s World Cup squad, though Martinez intends to carefully manage the midfielder’s development.

“The England manager [Roy Hodgson] has to decide what role, if any, he wants for Ross [at the World Cup],” he observed.

“What we need to do is make sure we give Ross another 50 starts to see his evolution. Any player needs to develop an understanding.

“In this country, we need to be more protective over our youngsters because, in Ross, we have someone who, if we look after him properly, can give us something unique.”

Will Suarez become Liverpool's greatest-ever player?

With the Uruguayan currently in sensational form, the question is now being asked as to where the forward ranks in the club’s lengthy list of legends

COMMENT
By Wayne Veysey

There is a growing debate among Liverpool worshippers as they assess the sustained brilliance of Luis Suarez: where should he be placed in the Anfield pantheon?

Long-time observers trot out the hallowed names in the club’s history and warn that greatness is partly defined by longevity.

Others marvel at Suarez’s breathtaking performances week in, week out and are beginning to wonder whether there has ever been a better player to wear the famous red shirt.

In the Kop’s honours system, Kenny Dalglish is usually anointed in a category of his own. Most judges agree who should be crowned king and everyone else is playing for second place.

Does Suarez deserve to be mentioned in the same breath as the likes of Dalglish, John Barnes, Graeme Souness, Kevin Keegan, Billy Liddell and modern-day greats Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher?

Absolutely. His displays are making an unarguable case for his entry into the very top tier of Liverpool players.

The high-water mark was the four-goal masterclass last week against Norwich City, one of the greatest individual performances in Premier League history.

Yet, the measure of Suarez’s excellence is the consistency with which he is complementing prolific scoring with moments of jaw-dropping skill. Increasingly, both at the same time.

The dubious goals panel may rob Suarez of a third goal-of-the-season contender in four days, as his second against West Ham on Saturday took a heavy deflection off Joey O’Brien, but it does not take the gloss off the quality.

At a club whose history glitters with outstanding forwards – from Roger Hunt, Ian St John, John Toshack, Kevin Keegan, Dalglish, John Aldridge and Ian Rush through to icons of the Premier League era, Robbie Fowler, Michael Owen and Fernando Torres – Suarez faces mighty competition for a place in the all-time rankings. Yet it is questionable whether any of the Uruguayan’s gilded predecessors provided as big a threat to opponents as he is doing at the moment.

Like Dalglish, Suarez’s excellence cannot be defined merely by numbers. His enterprise, touch and inventiveness demand that he is the first name on the team-sheet whether he is finding the back of the net or not.

Nonetheless, the statistics are persuasive. In the 11 matches since his return from a 10-match suspension, Suarez has scored an astonishing 14 goals, all in the Premier League. In 107 games for Liverpool, he has scored 65 goals in total.

These are almost identical numbers to Aldridge (63 in 104), a penalty-box predator who was being fed by Barnes and Peter Beardsley in arguably the most fluent Liverpool side of them all.

Suarez has become as prolific as any Liverpool forward in history, not bad for a player positionally categorised by Brendan Rodgers as a ‘nine-and-a-half’ and who was criticised for the sloppiness of his finishing in the first half of his career at the club.

Technically outstanding, instinctive, two-footed, competitive and with an edge to his game, his all-round skills have elevated him to the tier in world football directly below Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. Like those two, his virtuosity matches his hunger and durability.

Even taking into account Suarez’s temperament flaws, many indiscretions and the way he tried to engineer his exit to, first, Real Madrid and then Arsenal last summer, the Uruguayan must command elite status in the Liverpool pantheon.

Yet exactly where depends for how long he continues to mesmerise in a red jersey. Liverpool will be confident of fending off interest from Real Madrid in their prize asset in January. Next summer promises to be a more testing proposition, with or without the carrot of Champions League football in 2014-15.

Should Suarez remain at the club, he could go down as the best Liverpool player there has ever been. There are few higher compliments.

Is Suarez Liverpool's greatest-ever player?

With the Uruguayan currently in sensational form, the question is now being asked as to where the forward ranks in the club’s lengthy list of legends

COMMENT
By Wayne Veysey

There is a growing debate among Liverpool worshippers as they assess the sustained brilliance of Luis Suarez: where should he be placed in the Anfield pantheon?

Long-time observers trot out the hallowed names in the club’s history and warn that greatness is partly defined by longevity.

Others marvel at Suarez’s breathtaking performances week in, week out and are beginning to wonder whether there has ever been a better player to wear the famous red shirt.

In the Kop’s honours system, Kenny Dalglish is usually annointed in a category of his own. Most judges agree who should be crowned king and everyone else is playing for second place.

Does Suarez deserve to be mentioned in the same breath as the likes of Dalglish, John Barnes, Graeme Souness, Kevin Keegan, Billy Liddell and modern-day greats Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher?

Absolutely. His displays are making an unarguable case for his entry into the very top tier of Liverpool players.

The high-water mark was the four-goal masterclass last week against Norwich City, one of the greatest individual performances in Premier League history.

Yet, the measure of Suarez’s excellence is the consistency with which he is complementing prolific scoring with moments of jaw-dropping skill. Increasingly, both at the same time.

The dubious goals panel may rob Suarez of a third goal-of-the-season contender in four days, as his second against West Ham on Saturday took a heavy deflection off Joey O’Brien, but it does not take the gloss off the quality.

At a club whose history glitters with outstanding forwards – from Roger Hunt, Ian St John, John Toshack, Kevin Keegan, Dalglish, John Aldridge and Ian Rush through to icons of the Premier League era, Robbie Fowler, Michael Owen and Fernando Torres – Suarez faces mighty competition for a place in the all-time rankings. Yet it is questionable whether any of the Uruguayan’s gilded predecessors provided as big a threat to opponents as he is doing at the moment.

Like Dalglish, Suarez’s excellence cannot be defined merely by numbers. His enterprise, touch and inventiveness demand that he is the first name on the team-sheet whether he is finding the back of the net or not.

Nonetheless, the statistics are persuasive. In the 11 matches since his return from a 10-match suspension, Suarez has scored an astonishing 14 goals, all in the Premier League. In 107 games for Liverpool, he has scored 65 goals in total.

These are almost identical numbers to Aldridge (63 in 104), a penalty-box predator who was being fed by Barnes and Peter Beardsley in arguably the most fluent Liverpool side of them all.

Suarez has become as prolific as any Liverpool forward in history, not bad for a player positionally categorised by Brendan Rodgers as a ‘nine-and-a-half’ and who was criticised for the sloppiness of his finishing in the first half of his career at the club.

Technically outstanding, instinctive, two-footed, competitive and with an edge to his game, his all-round skills have elevated him to the tier in world football directly below Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. Like those two, his virtuosity matches his hunger and durability.

Even taking into account Suarez’s temperament flaws, many indiscretions and the way he tried to engineer his exit to, first, Real Madrid and then Arsenal last summer, the Uruguayan must command elite status in the Liverpool pantheon.

Yet exactly where depends for how long he continues to mesmerise in a red jersey. Liverpool will be confident of fending off interest from Real Madrid in their prize asset in January. Next summer promises to be a more testing proposition, with or without the carrot of Champions League football in 2014-15.

Should Suarez remain at the club, he could go down as the best Liverpool player there has ever been. There are few higher compliments.

TIREDNESS – NOT HEAT, SUAREZ OR BALOTELLI – IS ENGLAND’S BIGGEST OPPONENT

Of all the reactions to England’s World Cup draw, none was more damning than that offered by Fabio Capello.

Asked about the clash between England and his native Italy in the Amazonian rainforest, Capello observed: “England players will not be at the top of their physical condition And Manaus will be really, really warm. It will be tougher for England. Italy sometimes arrive tired But, in England, the football is stronger, faster – they never stop.”

Handed a bunch of exhausted players before the 2010 tournament, Capello’s assessment is worth remembering before we get too carried away with the potential of Ross Barkley, Daniel Sturridge and Luke Shaw, or the consistent majesty of Wayne Rooney and Steven Gerrard.

The exertions of an English campaign, supplemented by the wilting heat of Brazil, are likely to be even more decisive next June than the on-pitch threats of Luis Suarez and Mario Balotelli.

It is a shame But it would reckless to ignore this time-honoured reality.

Cabaye: Who doesn't want to play for Paris Saint-Germain?

The France international is unaware of any official approach from the Ligue 1 giants but suggests that he would be keen on a switch to the Parc des Princes in the future

Newcastle midfielder Yohan Cabaye has opened the door to a potential move to Paris Saint-Germain by insisting: Who doesn’t want to play for them?”

Cabaye, who scored the winning goal as Alan Pardew’s side defeated Manchester United on Saturday, came close to joining Arsenal in the summer, with the Gunners failing with a £10 million (€12m) bid for the France international.

The former Lille man has played a key role in the Magpies’ resurgence this season that sees them sitting in seventh place in the Premier League table but, despite confirming that no offer has come in from PSG, Cabaye would be interested in a switch to the Parc des Princes.

“Contact with PSG? Not to my knowledge,” he said, as quoted by BeIN Sport. “I know that in January the rumours will start all over again. I’d like to know who does not want to play for Paris Saint-Germain today?”

Cabaye also revealed that he was in talks to join Aston Villa during Gerard Houllier’s spell in charge back in 2011 before he finally opted for St James’s Park but has “no regrets” over moving to the Tyneside club.

“It was the summer after Lille won the double,” the midfielder recalled. “I had much more contact with Aston Villa and Houllier. It was my priority.

“Then my agent told me about Newcastle and I waited for Houllier to tell me he had finally stopped [managing Villa due to health reasons], to join Newcastle.

“And I have no regrets. I feel great, confident, especially compared to last season. It was the first time in my career I played [to avoid] relegation.

“This season we are well placed, we have taken points. I feel very good, I want it to be a big season, to try to finish as high as possible while thinking about the World Cup next summer.”

French newspaper Le Parisien reported on Monday that there had been no approach from PSG for Cabaye, detailing that their interest in the Frenchman dated back to Leonardo’s time as a director at the club.