Zabaleta: Brazil hatred drives us on
- 12 July 2014 08:48
- Posted by @NieldyMCFC
Happy World Cup Final Eve, everyone!
With the hours ticking down until kick-off in Rio tomorrow, City’s Pablo Zabaleta features heavily in many previews across the paper and pixelated pages of the media.
The Blues hero has had an excellent tournament, putting in the type of all-action displays at right-back for La Albiceleste that we’ve all become accustomed to seeing in the Premier League.
Zaba reckons that Argentina’s bitter rivalry with hosts Brazil has driven Alejandro Sabella’s side on towards their first final in 24 years.
““You can see how the Argentina fans are excited, singing for 90 minutes. It’s special for us to play in this country,” said Zabaleta in Paul Joyce’s piece for the Express. “Especially because Brazilian fans have been against Argentina for this World Cup.
““Sometimes, if you have all the people against you, you feel even stronger. We showed that and we feel very proud.
You can imagine people from Argentina selling their cars to be here, even without tickets. This is something that happens in Argentina. We love football.
““We know how special it would be for this country to win another World Cup. But obviously we appreciate how Argentinean fans are doing everything to support the team.
““As a player I feel very proud, everyone feels very proud. Hopefully we can give them another trophy.””
Owen Gibson in the Guardian’s write-up carries more quotes from the influential full-back who believes his side won’t buckle like Brazil against a Germany side that are now touted as favourites following that remarkable Semi Final victory over the hosts.
““Even if you concede some goals before 15 minutes or 20 minutes you need to keep calm and keep playing in the same way as we have been doing for these six games,” said Zabaleta, whose tears of relief and battered, bruised face after their semi-final victory over Holland seemed to sum up their scrappy, resolute run to the final.
““A football game is just about 90 minutes. If you concede some goals and you try to score as soon as possible, you concede space at the back and you are finished. It was a lesson for us, the Brazil game.””
We’ll have full coverage and reaction to the World Cup Final over the weekend as well as updates on Twitter of today’s 3rd and 4th place play-off between Brazil and Holland.
“Newcastle, Sunderland, Stoke, Southampton, West Ham, Tottenham, Swansea, West Brom and his former side Everton are all chasing the Manchester City misfit.
“Italian giants Inter Milan, along with Spanish sides Valencia and Villarreal, also want the England midfielder, who wants to leave the champions after two miserable years with the top flight champions.
“Rodwell, 23, has been unable to nail down a regular spot in City’s starting line-up, and has made just 26 appearances since joining in a £13.2million switch from Goodison in August 2012.
“A source said: ”Jack is very disappointed at the way his career has stalled since joining City. He had high hopes that it would be a great move for him, but it just hasn’t worked out.”
Elsewhere, Inter Milan still carry hopes of signing Stevan Jovetic according to their sporting director Piero Ausilio.
“The Italian giants have been regularly linked with a move for Jovetic as owner Erick Thohir looks to return the club to UEFA Champions League football” reports FourFourTwo.
“The signing of defender Nemanja Vidic was a big statement of intent and Ausilio - who spoke about the chances of Inter signing several players - has his fingers crossed that Jovetic joins the former Manchester United captain at San Siro.
"We made contact some time ago with the club, who told us that the boy wasn't for sale," Ausilio told Sky.
"We thought therefore that there was no longer an opportunity. But the window closes on September 2."”