Five stars could save Spurs’ horror season, including Dybala, and Fernandes

first_imgBruno FernandesSporting Lisbon’s star man was chased by Spurs and Manchester United all summer with Real Madrid and Liverpool also keeping tabs.And Tottenham even had a £40million bid turned down by the Portuguese champions because of Champions League and Premier League clauses they included.Riccardo SottilThe Fiorentina winger made his Italy Under-21 debut earlier this month having moved into the Tuscan side’s first-team.And Spurs reportedly sent scouts to watch the Serie A star play against Atalanta on Sunday night. But they would have left disappointed given the 20-year-old remained on the bench throughout the 2-2 draw.Dael FryMiddlesbrough’s bright young defender, 22, is a target for Spurs, Man City and Everton and the North Londoners could move in January to shore up their leaky defence.Fry recently reacted to speculation linking him with a move, saying: “If I want to play in the Premier League I want it to be with Middlesbrough.“This season, I’ll give 110 per cent but obviously if not who knows what’s going to happen.”77 Paulo Dybala is a target for SpursCredit: Getty Images – Getty7 Real Madrid would let Isco go if they got a £72m offerCredit: Getty – Contributor7 Bruno Fernandes was a target for Man Utd but Spurs could swoop in JanuaryCredit: Getty – Contributor7 Tottenham sent scouts to watch Riccardo Sottil on SundayCredit: Getty Images – Getty7 Dael Fry is a target for several Premier League clubsCredit: PA:Empics SportTwitter slates ‘plastic’ Southampton fan for filming fake celebration during derby win over Portsmouth TOTTENHAM have had a very shaky start to the season and it got even worse when they crashed out of the League Cup to League Two minnows Colchester United on Tuesday.The North Londoners sit seventh in the Premier League and have failed to win four of their six games so far.7 Mauricio Pochettino refused to slam his players for their Colchester performance but could dip into the transfer market to improve his squad in JanuaryCredit: ReutersTheir stats so far also include an embarrassing home defeat to relegation candidates Newcastle and a 2-1 defeat at Leicester last time out.But after Mauricio Pochettino refused to slam his current players after their Colchester defeat, here are five new recruits the Argentine could bring in in January to save Tottenham’s slide.Paulo DybalaSpurs lined up a £65million bid for the Juventus forward on deadline day but it fell through at the last minute when the Italian champs pulled the plug.The attacking midfielder could be a perfect replacement for Christian Eriksen, who wanted a new challenge in the summer and has started the season in indifferent form.IscoThe Spanish midfielder is surplus to requirements at Real Madrid and was made available by the Spanish giants for £72m earlier in the summer.Los Blancos still need to offload some big stars having signed Eden Hazard, and are still courting Manchester United’s Paul Pogba.last_img read more

We get more love in India than Pakistan: Afridi

first_imgKolkata, Mar 13 (PTI) Floored by the warm reception here after arriving for the ICC World Twenty20, Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi today said his team is “loved more in India” than in Pakistan and has never felt any security threat in the country. The Pakistani team touched down here last night after getting government clearance to travel, a decision that was delayed by several days over security concerns. In fact, Pakistans marquee World T20 clash against India on March 19 had be moved from Dharamsala to Kolkata after Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh expressed his inability to provide adequate security cover in the wake of protests by the states ex-servicemen. However, both Afridi and senior all-rounder Shoaib Malik played down the intense media focus on Pakistans security. “Ive not enjoyed playing anywhere as much as I have in India. I am in the last stage of my career and I can say that the love I have got in India is something that I will always remember. We have not got this much love even from Pakistan,” Afridi said. “There are cricket-loving people here, much like in Pakistan. Overall, Ive enjoyed a lot playing in India in my cricketing career,” he added. Echoing Afridis sentiment, Malik, who is married to Indian tennis star Sania Mirza, said he feels honoured to be in India. “Firstly I would like to thank the Indian Government. The security is very good. My wife is from India and I come to India a lot. I have never faced any security issue,” Malik said. “I dont really see any difference between Pakistani people and the Indians. We eat the same food, we speak the same language. I dont really see any difference. I am very happy to be in India. I have always got a lot of love from people and from media. Im honoured to be in India,” he added. Asked to comment on Pakistan government delaying clearance for their departure by insisting on a written security assurance from India, Afridi side-stepped the query, saying that he would not speak on politics. “Whatever decision the state takes, we are behind them. We are cricketers and not politicians. Sport always brings two nations together. Can there be anything better than cricket? I think we should keep politics away from it,” Afridi said. On whether Pakistani players would be distracted by the drama that preceded their arrival, Afridi said: “I think its nothing special. We were practising over there. We think about that. Physically and mentally we were ready that we will go definitely.” “International cricket is all about pressure. The team which handles pressure well wins in the end.” PTI TAP PM PMadvertisementlast_img read more