Live updates

Llorente: Italy would be harder for Ronaldo and Messi

Would Ronaldo and Messi score as many goals in Italy? Credit: PA

Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi would not score as many goals in Italy's Serie A, according to Juventus striker Fernando Llorente.

The Real Madrid and Barcelona superstars have already notched a combined 36 goals this season, Ronaldo tucking away 23, in a league widely considered the finest in world football.

But Spanish striker Llorente, who joined Juventus in 2013 following nine years in Spain with Bilbao, told Cope:

"Messi and Ronaldo are players from another planet, but I'd like to see them in Italy.

"The defences are very tight here, with many players put behind the ball, so it would be more difficult for them to score goals."


Valencia to ban fan that hit Messi with bottle for life

Spanish side Valencia say they will ban the fan who hit Leo Messi with a bottle during their match with Barcelona on Sunday.

The Argentine forward was struck when celebrating Sergio Busquets' last-minute winner over Valencia at their Mestalla stadium.

Leo Messi played in the victory at the Mestalla. Credit: Reuters

"Valencia CF regret and condemn the isolated incident in the game against FC Barcelona, in which a small, uncapped bottle of water was thrown from the stands at opposition player Lionel Messi," Valencia said on their website.

"The club will endeavour to locate the person who threw the bottle and they will be banned for life from the Mestalla.

"Valencia CF operate a zero tolerance policy on such actions and rigorously enforce all security measures set out by legislation."

Messi not leaving says Barcelona president

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu says Leo Messi is happy at the Catalan club, claiming external bodies have been stirring up the rumours he wants to leave the Nou Camp.

The Argentine forward was recently quoted as saying he was open to the possibility of leaving, but Bartomeu has denied this.

Leo Messi is going nowhere, supposedly. Credit: PA

"Leo is under a lot of pressure off the field," Bartomeu told 8TV. "I have spoken with his father, Jorge, two days ago and my impression is that nothing has changed, he is happy at Barca, and his comments say that clearly - he wants to win everything.

"He has not asked us for a new contract. No, no. He is happy. From inside the club we will always help the player. [Former Barca coach Pep] Guardiola already said it a few years ago, Leo must be happy at Barca."

Wenger: I tried to sign Barcelona star Messi for Arsenal

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger claims the club tried to sign Barcelona star Leo Messi when he was a teenager.

The Gunners acquired Cesc Fabregas at the time, but failed to land the Argentine, with rumours circulating that they were unable to buy a flat for Messi's family.

"I think in the end, he was not so keen to move, because it was at a period where Fabregas came, and Fabregas and Messi played together in the same team (at Barcelona Academy). We wanted to take Fabregas, Messi and Pique. It worked only for Fabregas," said Wenger.

"It was not completely down to a flat in the end. It was down to the fact that, in the end, Messi was comfortable at Barcelona."


Lionel Messi open to leaving Barcelona

Barcelona aren't the force they were a few years ago. Credit: PA

Lionel Messi has hinted he could leave Barcelona next summer after admitting "sometimes things don’t work out" when quizzed about his future.

Speaking to Argentine newspaper Ole, he explained:

"Today I live in the present. I want to make a great year and win titles with Barcelona. And nothing more. After that we’ll see.

"Things can change a lot in football. While I have always said I would like to stay there [at Barcelona] forever, sometimes things don’t work out the way you would like."

Load more updates