Manchester United F.C.’s Paul Pogba is the world’s best midfield player and has the potential to win the Ballon d’Or in the next five years, the Frenchman’s club and national teammate Anthony Martial has said.Pogba, who rejoined United from Juventus in 2016, scored five goals and provided four assists in 30 Premier League appearances last campaign.The 24-year-old has started the current season strongly with two goals and an assist in the first two league matches and Martial believes his compatriot can reach the next level and become the best footballer in the world.”Paul is very mentally strong and he is very sure of himself,” Martial told United’s website.”He is a big guy, he is very technical on the ball and he has lots of endurance. I would say he is probably the best midfield player in the world.Reuters Photo “He is still young, too, so he has a lot to work on and he can get even better… If he continues to play and improve like he is doing then I think he is also going to win the Ballon d’Or award in the next five years.”Martial, who has scored two goals in as many league games this season, also praised Pogba’s attributes off the pitch and said the duo are targeting silverware at both domestic and national tournaments.”We want to win a lot of trophies together at United, and we also want to win the World Cup with France,” the 21-year-old added.advertisementThe United duo will be looking to extend their flying start to the campaign when the club host Leicester City at Old Trafford on Saturday.
ATHENS — Greece coach Claudio Ranieri has dropped veteran striker Fanis Gekas from his attacking lineup, and called up rookie Nikos Karelis for European Championship qualifiers against Finland and Northern Ireland.The Greeks lost their Group F opener 1-0 at home to Romania last month. Ranieri recalled the 34-year-old Gekas to his provisional squad but dropped him in favor of the 22-year-old striker Karelis. “This is a big step for my career, and I was deliegted to get the call,” Keralis said.Ranieri also stuck with in-form PAOK striker Stefanos Athanasiadis who failed to make Greece’s World Cup squad earlier this year.PAOK defender Giannis Skondras was named as a late replacement for Avraam Papadopoulos, after the Turkey-based player suffered a cheekbone injury.Earlier Oct. 3d, World Cup captain Giorgos Karagounis was formally presented as a coaching assistant for the national team, after announcing the end of his club career.He will travel with his former teammates to Finland for the Oct. 11 match. Greece hosts Northern Ireland three days later.TweetPinShare0 Shares
Egypt striker Mohamed Salah was voted as the African Footballer of the Year for the second successive year at the Confederation of African Football’s awards ceremony in Dakar on Tuesday.Salah beat fellow nominees, Liverpool team mate Sadio Mane and Arsenal forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.He edged the same two players last year in a vote decided by the technical directors and head coaches of 56 CAF member associations.”This award is very big for me, I love it because I saw it when I was young and I always had a dream to win it one day,” Salah said when collecting his trophy for his 2018 exploits.”I’m proud to win it twice, I must thank my family and my team mates, and I dedicate this award to my country, Egypt.”Salah helped Liverpool reach the 2018 Champions League final but suffered a shoulder injury during the 3-1 defeat by Real Madrid in Kiev.That injury raised doubts about his World Cup participation but he regained fitness to represent Egypt in the finals in Russia, scoring twice as they exited in the first round.He has scored 13 Premier League goals this season to guide Liverpool to the top of the standings.It is the third time an Egyptian player has claimed the crown, with Mahmoud El Khatib’s 1983 victory being the other occasion.Also Watch: