Favre ready for life after Sancho and Hakimi at Dortmund

By Sports Desk June 15, 2020

Borussia Dortmund coach Lucien Favre recognises there is no guarantee over the futures of Jadon Sancho and Achraf Hakimi.

Former Manchester City winger Sancho has long been linked with a return to the Premier League, most persistently with Manchester United.

Hakimi's future is also unclear given his loan deal from Real Madrid expires at the end of the season and Dortmund have not yet agreed to an extension.

Although the impact of the coronavirus pandemic has made significant transfer spending less likely across Europe, it remains unclear whether Dortmund will be able to keep Hakimi and resist offers for Sancho.

Favre is prepared for the prospect of losing both players, even though he is still hopeful they will stay at Signal Iduna Park for 2020-21.

"We'll see after the season," he said on Monday. "Of course, players will leave. We hope the players will stay, but it is possible that players will leave. You have already mentioned two [Hakimi and Sancho] that we don't definitely know about.

"Of course, they could stay with us, which would be very good for me. But we'll see what we'll do, whether it's in defence, midfield or attack."

Dortmund host Mainz on Wednesday in their next Bundesliga match but Bayern Munich may already have secured the title if they beat Werder Bremen on Tuesday.

Favre is happy to congratulate Hansi Flick on guiding Bayern to an eighth domestic title in a row, but he still feels things could have been different had Dortmund been given a penalty for a Jerome Boateng handball when the two sides met last month in a game the league leaders went on to win 1-0.

"I am very happy for my colleague at Bayern," he said. "He is doing a very good job. I can only congratulate him. But I still can't forget our game against Bayern.

"It was a clear penalty in the 60th minute [when Erling Haaland's shot hit Boateng's arm]. And everything would have been open after that. That would have changed everything. We were close. But in the end, we have to admit that Bayern is clearly the best team."

Related items

  • England World Cup winner Nobby Stiles dies aged 78 England World Cup winner Nobby Stiles dies aged 78

    England World Cup winner and former Manchester United player Nobby Stiles has died at the age of 78.

    Stiles' family confirmed that the one-time midfielder passed away peacefully on Friday after a long illness.

    Manchester-born Stiles earned 28 caps for England and was a big part of the squad that won the World Cup in 1966.

    Two years later, he was part of the United side that became the first English club to win the European Cup.

    He made almost 400 appearances for United in all competitions across an 11-year spell at Old Trafford and went on to play for Middlesbrough and Preston North End, before hanging up his boots in 1975.

    A statement from United read: "We are extremely saddened to learn of the passing of Nobby Stiles MBE.

    "An integral part of our first-ever European Cup-winning side, Nobby was a titan of the club's history, cherished for his heart and personality on and off the pitch. He will be sorely missed by us all."

    The England national team Twitter account posted: "We're incredibly saddened to learn of the passing of Nobby Stiles, a key member of our World Cup-winning squad, at the age of 78. All of our thoughts are with Nobby's loved ones."

    Former England striker Gary Lineker was also among those to pay tribute to Stiles on social media, tweeting: "Saddened to hear that Nobby Stiles has passed away.

    "Another of our 1966 World Cup winning heroes leaves us. He had a heart that was even bigger than the gap in his teeth. RIP Nobby."

  • Paris Saint-Germain president Nasser Al-Khelaifi acquitted in Swiss corruption trial Paris Saint-Germain president Nasser Al-Khelaifi acquitted in Swiss corruption trial

    Paris Saint-Germain president Nasser Al-Khelaifi is glad to have "completely cleared my name" after being acquitted by a Swiss court of inciting aggravated criminal mismanagement.

    Al-Khelaifi had been charged in a case relating to beIN Media Group's allocation of television rights for the 2026 and 2030 World Cups.

    The case also involved ex-FIFA general secretary Jerome Valcke, who was found guilty of forging documents relating to separate media rights and given a 120-day suspended prison sentence.

    A statement from PSG chief Al-Khelaifi, who is also part of UEFA's executive committee, read: "Today's verdict is a total vindication.

    "After a relentless four-year campaign against me that ignored the basic facts and the law at every turn, I have finally, fully and completely cleared my name.

    "It restores my faith in the rule of law and in due process, after four years of baseless allegations, fictitious charges and constant smears of my reputation - all of which have been proven to be completely and wholly unsubstantiated."

    He added: "I can now devote all my energy to my various roles, which are all focused on building a positive future for world sport - at a time when the industry needs strong leadership the most."

     

  • Guardiola 'incredibly happy' at Manchester City and hopeful of prolonging stay amid latest Barca links Guardiola 'incredibly happy' at Manchester City and hopeful of prolonging stay amid latest Barca links

    Pep Guardiola is "incredibly happy" at Manchester City and is hopeful of prolonging his stay at the club amid fresh links with a return to Barcelona.

    Barca presidential candidate Victor Font stated this week he intends to lure Guardiola back to Camp Nou should he succeed Josep Maria Bartomeu, who stepped down along with the entire board on Tuesday ahead of a vote of no confidence.

    Guardiola won three LaLiga titles and two Champions League crowns during a trophy-laden spell in charge of the Catalan giants between 2008 and 2012.

    The 49-year-old is into his fifth season with City - more than he has managed at any previous club - but is due to be out of contract at the conclusion of the current campaign.

    Despite not yet opening talks with the club over fresh terms, however, Guardiola has insisted he is open to staying on at the Etihad Stadium beyond the end of 2020-21.

    "I'm incredibly happy here," he said at Friday's news conference when asked about Font's comments. 

    "I'm delighted to be in Manchester and hopefully I can do a good job this season to stay longer."

    City have had a largely mixed start to the campaign, most recently following up a 1-1 Premier League draw at West Ham with a 3-0 victory at Marseille in the Champions League.

    They have failed to score more than once in their past three top-flight outings but Guardiola denied suggestions his side are lacking motivation with games coming thick and fast.

    "With this amount of matches we play, if the manager has to motivate players he is over," he said ahead of Saturday's trip to Sheffield United. 

    "They come from inside the desire to play good, help the team, to feel important, to be decisive in every game. This comes from inside themselves. 

    "We suggest ideas but playing every three days I can't make a speech to motivate them. They love football to be part of the competitions."

    Kyle Walker has started every game for City this season, plus three internationals for England, and was arguably the best player on the field in the win away to Marseille.

    He gained possession more times than any other player on the field (10) and no-one made more than his 112 touches, level with team-mate Oleksandr Zinchenko.

    Guardiola feels the versatile defender, who was signed from Tottenham for an initial £45million in July 2017, is playing the best football of his career.

    "I want to thank the club for bringing him here - it was an incredible signing," Guardiola said. "Today the top players can play every three days and not get injured. 

    "Before you sign a player you have to look at his injury history and ability to play and play. Kyle is an example of that. Now this is the best Kyle we have ever seen. 

    "He's one of our captains and important in the locker room. In the last game against Marseille, he had a really good game and hopefully he will tomorrow, too."

    City head to Bramall Lane looking to win four consecutive league games against Sheffield United for the first time since March 1930.

    Guardiola revealed Sergio Aguero is still not back in training following his latest injury setback, while Gabriel Jesus and Nathan Ake "are getting better" and will be assessed on Friday.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.