Aurelien Tchouameni has dismissed talk of him being the new Paul Pogba and explained why he turned down Paris Saint-Germain to join Real Madrid.

Tchouameni has emerged as another big French talent, prompting Madrid to lure him to Santiago Bernabeu from Monaco for a fee of €80million that could rise to €100m in June.

PSG are among the top European clubs who were also eager to land the midfielder, but he had already agreed to sign for the European champions.

Tchouameni has been likened to France team-mate Pogba, but the 22-year-old does not want to hear those comparisons after making a name for himself.

He told Telefoot: "I am not the new Pogba, I am Aurelien Tchouameni, I try to write my own story. Pogba is a player I followed a lot when he was little and whom I follow a lot. We play in the same position, but there is only one Pogba."

Tchouameni revealed he had no intention of staying in his homeland with PSG after giving Madrid his word that he would move to the Spanish capital.

He added: "No, no, I didn't hesitate with PSG. It is also a very big European club, but I had already decided to play for Real Madrid."

Tchouameni has fierce competition for a place in the Madrid midfield and knows he must grasp his opportunities.

"No matter the price of the transfer, at this club there is always pressure," he said. "But I'm trying to live up to expectations, to do what I can do on the pitch and so far it's going quite well.

"It was not me who was in the office to give the numbers of my signing. So whether it's 80 [million Euros], 60, 40... in the end, when you arrive in Madrid and you're a starter, you always have to perform."

Pogba hopes he will be a starter when Les Bleus attempt to retain the World Cup in Qatar.

He said: "I try to contribute to the team, then if [N'Golo] Kante and Pogba return, the coach will be the one I choose and I will always do my best to be the starter.

"I think about the World Cup every day. I'll try to win points with Real Madrid and then we'll wait for the list."

Phil Foden became the youngest player to hit 50 goals in a Pep Guardiola team as he scored two in a first-half rampage by Manchester City in Sunday's derby.

The England international scored City's opener and added their fourth as the home side led Manchester United 4-0 at the break. They were his first goals in Manchester derbies, with this his eighth appearance in such a game.

Between those goals, Erling Haaland delivered another masterclass of finishing with a clinical double strike, and it was Haaland's cross that Foden fired in to reach his half-century.

It meant Foden got to 50 goals in all competitions for City at the age of 22 years and 127 days.

Lionel Messi was 22 years and 164 days old when he reached 50 under Guardiola at Barcelona.

To give that some context, it is important to remember Messi had played four seasons for Barcelona before Guardiola took charge ahead of the 2008-09 season, while Foden has only ever played for Guardiola in City's first team.

Messi reached 50 for Guardiola in just his second season under the Spanish boss, while Foden made his City debut almost five years ago, in a Champions League game against Feyenoord.

Real Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois faces a spell on the sidelines after suffering an injury with Belgium during the international break.

The 30-year-old completed 90 minutes as Belgium lost 1-0 to the Netherlands in last Sunday's Nations League clash, but appeared to be in some discomfort during the game.

Madrid host Osasuna in LaLiga on Sunday as they return to action after the last international break before November's World Cup, but will be without their star goalkeeper.

The Spanish and European champions released a statement ahead of the clash with Osasuna stating Courtois had suffered a hernia issue.

However, Carlo Ancelotti's side did not confirm how long the back injury will keep Courtois on the sidelines as Madrid await results from scans on the former Chelsea man.

Courtois remains the only player to have played every minute of the season so far for Madrid, who are undefeated this campaign, but that run will end with Andriy Lunin expected to replace him.

FIFA president Gianni Infantino offered his condolences on "a dark day" after at least 174 people were killed in a stampede at an Indonesian Premier League (Liga 1) match between Arema FC and Persebaya Surabaya.

Police fired tear gas in an attempt to disperse rioting fans on the pitch after hosts Arema were beaten 3-2 at the Kanjuruhan Stadium in Malang on Saturday.

East Java police chief Nico Afinta said people died after being crushed and suffocated as they ran towards the same exit, with Afinta stating that 3,000 of the approximately 40,000 spectators in attendance had invaded the pitch initiating "riots".

It was initially reported that about 130 people had lost their lives, but officials later confirmed the death toll had climbed.

The Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI) launched an investigation into the tragedy, while FIFA's Infantino said in a statement: "The football world is in a state of shock following the tragic incidents that have taken place in Indonesia.

"This is a dark day for all involved in football and a tragedy beyond comprehension.

"I extend my deepest condolences to the families and friends of the victims who lost their lives following this tragic incident.

"Together with FIFA and the global football community, all our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, those who have been injured, together with the people of the Republic of Indonesia, the Asian Football Confederation, the Indonesian Football Association, and the Indonesian Football League, at this difficult time."

All remaining Liga 1 matches due to be staged over the weekend were suspended following the tragedy, while Arema have been banned from hosting games until the end of the season.

Erling Haaland has enjoyed a remarkably prolific start to life in England with Manchester City.

Ahead of Sunday's derby with Manchester United, Haaland has netted 14 goals in 10 appearances in all competitions for City since his off-season move.

The Norwegian joined City from Borussia Dortmund in June on a five-year contract, following interest from several top clubs.

TOP STORY – MAN CITY CONSIDERING IMPROVED HAALAND DEAL

It is only a few months into Erling Haaland's first Manchester City contract, but the English champions are ready to offer him a new and improved deal, reports the Daily Star.

City have gone early on revised contracts in the past to shore up key players before they become transfer targets for rivals and they will do the same with their star striker if he can keep up his goalscoring prowess.

Haaland is already one of City's top earners alongside Kevin De Bruyne, pocketing around £375,000 per week.

City may opt to bump that up with an improved extension in May, with reports that Real Madrid are planning to chase him in 2024, when they can trigger his termination clause.

ROUND-UP

– PSV's hot property winger Cody Gakpo is attracting interest from Milan, claims Calciomercato. The 23-year-old Dutchman was pursued by Manchester United and Leeds United during the last transfer window, and has also been linked with Southampton and Everton.

– The Sun reports that French Ligue 1 outfit Nice are in the lead in the race to sign Shakhtar Donetsk winger Mykhaylo Mudryk. The Ukrainian club are demanding £50million (€56.86m) for him.

Arsenal are in the race for Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves, claims the Express, and are hoping to win him over amid rival interest from Barcelona, Liverpool and Manchester United.

West Ham United are the latest club to be interested in Club Brugge winger Noa Lang, reports Calciomercato. Milan are also credited with an interest in the 23-year-old.

Arsenal are weighing up a move for Bayer Leverkusen's Ecuadorian defender Piero Hincapie, according to Teamtalk.

– Marca claims Sevilla could bring back former boss Jorge Sampaoli, who led the club from 2016 to 2017, if they dispense with current head coach Julen Lopetegui after their poor start to the campaign.

New Manchester United signing Antony has praised veteran Cristiano Ronaldo for his impact at the club, making him feel comfortable since his move from Amsterdam.

Antony joined United from Ajax in late August, amid a period where 37-year-old Ronaldo was seeking a way out of Old Trafford.

Instead, Ronaldo remained at United, and 22-year-old Brazil international Antony is relishing the opportunity to work with the Portuguese in attack.

"I'm feeling very happy, and I told this to him, because we always follow up and have this dialogue," Antony told ESPN Brasil.

"He always makes me feel comfortable. It looks like I have known him for a long time, and I told him this.

"He has a beautiful history and he is a huge reference for those who are younger than him.

"Something flashes in my mind, like we play videogames [of him], watch him on television and right now I share some moments with him, for me it is very rewarding.

"Like I said: I'm still young, I am 22 years old and I'm learning a lot from him."

Antony, who scored on his United debut in a 3-1 win over Arsenal last month, has played three games since his move to the Red Devils.

The winger was glowing in his praise of Ronaldo shortly after his move to Manchester, in a sign of a budding relationship between the pair.

"In just a few days, I've learnt a lot from him," he told the club website in early September. "He has an extraordinary mind and, whenever I talk to him, I take a lot from it.

"I'm sure that we have a strong attack and it's very promising for the future. I've come to help my team-mates. Regardless of age, there's immense talent in all the players."

LA Galaxy clinched their first playoff berth since 2019 after Javier Hernandez earned them a late penalty to secure a 1-1 draw away to Real Salt Lake on Saturday.

Douglas Costa converted the 68th-minute penalty won by Hernandez, after Riqui Puig had his 17th-minute spotkick saved by RSL goalkeeper Zac MacMath.

RSL had gone ahead in the 25th minute from Sergio Cordova's header, but were left to lament Justen Glad failing to convert two late golden opportunities from headers, denting their playoff hopes and extending their winless run to five games.

Ex-Manchester United forward Hernandez earned Galaxy's reprieve after review when bundled over by Marcelo Silva inside the box, with Costa sending MacMath the wrong way.

The draw was enough for the Galaxy, who are perched fourth in the Western Conference with 47 points from 33 games, with RSL sitting eighth, just outside the playoff spots, with 44 points from 33 games.

Derrick Etienne scored two late goals against his former side to earn Columbus Crew a 2-1 win over New York Red Bulls, who suffered their third defeat in four games.

Etienne equalized Franuel Amaya's 53rd-minute thunderbolt with an 89th-minute strike on the turn, before grabbing a 93rd-minute winner by lashing home a rebound.

Philadelphia Union handed the initiative to LAFC in the Supporters' Shield hunt after being thrashed 4-0 by Charlotte, for whom Daniel Rios netted four goals, achieving a franchise-first hat-trick.

The defeat means Philadelphia have failed to win in their past two games, leaving them on 64 points from 33 games, while LAFC have the same number of points with two games to play, starting with Portland Timbers on Sunday.

Donovan Pines scored an own goal and was red carded as DC United lost 1-0 to Montreal, who closed within two points of Eastern Conference leaders Philadelphia with one game to play.

Sergio Santos was sent off amid a late scuffle as Cincinnati missed a chance to practically clinch a playoff spot with a 3-2 home loss to Chicago Fire. Cincinnati fought back from 3-0 down after Jhon Duran's double for Chicago.

Minnesota United's winless run extended to six games after going down 2-0 to San Jose Earthquakes, leaving them in a precarious position in the race to qualify for the Western Conference playoffs.

Vancouver Whitecaps capitalized on Minnesota and RSL's results and beat Austin 2-0 to keep alive their playoff hopes with their third straight victory. The Whitecaps are ninth in the west with 43 points with one game to play, with seventh-placed Minnesota on 45 and RSL on 44.

Josef Martinez scored a spectacular scissor-kick goal but Atlanta United went down 2-1 to New England, while playoff-bound Dallas lost 1-0 at Colorado Rapids.

Reigning Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) champions Senegal and continental powerhouse Ivory Coast have been drawn together for the 2022 African Nations Championship (CHAN).

The biennial tournament is due to be held in Algeria in January and February 2023, with 18 teams competing across five groups. The participants must consist only of players playing in their domestic national league competitions.

Group B looms as the toughest with Senegal drawn alongside two-time AFCON winners Ivory Coast, as well as DR Congo and Uganda. DR Congo missed out on 2022 World Cup qualification in the playoffs to Morocco.

Hosts Algeria are in Group A with 2014 winners Libya, Ethiopia and Mozambique, while Morocco, who have lifted the past two African Nations Championship titles, are in Group C with Ghana, Sudan and Madagascar.

Mali, Angola and Mauritania are in Group D and Cameroon, Congo and Niger make up Group E.

Egypt, who lost last year's AFCON final to Senegal, along with 2022 World Cup participants Tunisia did not enter, while Nigeria failed to qualify.

Bayern Munich pair Thomas Muller and Joshua Kimmich have gone into isolation after testing positive to COVID-19.

The German champions announced the news on Saturday, with Muller and Kimmich having both been in the starting XI for Friday's 4-0 Bundesliga win over Bayer Leverkusen.

Bayern said the pair had tested positive on Saturday, were asymptomatic, doing well and isolating at their respective homes.

The Bundesliga outfit are due to face Czech club Viktoria Plzen in the Champions League at Allianz Arena on Tuesday.

The positive tests come after Bayern pair Manuel Neuer and Leon Goretzka were withdrawn from Germany camp last week after their own infections.

Kimmich has started every game in all competitions this season for Bayern, netting two goals and providing four assists.

Muller has started all bar one of Bayern's games in all competitions, scoring twice and providing four assists.

Xavi made LaLiga history as Barcelona extended their unbeaten away record during his reign to 18 games, but the coach saw room for improvement in a 1-0 win at Real Mallorca.

The victory moved Xavi past Zinedine Zidane for the best unbeaten start away from home by a coach in the Spanish top flight, with the Frenchman having reached 17 games (W13 D4) in the competition without a defeat on the road in 2016 at Real Madrid.

Xavi's streak includes 13 wins and five draws, but Mallorca pushed Barcelona hard, and goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen had to be sharp to preserve another clean sheet.

That is five consecutive shut-outs for Barcelona in LaLiga, and Saturday's victory took them to the top of LaLiga with 19 points from seven games.

Real Madrid, due to play Osasuna on Sunday, have launched their title defence with six consecutive wins and are set to have the chance to reclaim top spot.

The first Clasico of the season is just two weeks away, however, and this early-season rivalry is boiling up nicely before that meeting at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Xavi said of his team's win, which was secured by Robert Lewandowski's ninth goal in seven league games: "It was a very complicated game. These are three very important points, especially after the [international] break.

"In games like this, if you don't score the second [goal], it can become complicated. We've done well by showing patience and calmness."

He added: "It was difficult for us. In the first half we were good, in the second [our level] went down and we can't allow that. We have to go for the second goal and be more ambitious."

 

The away run is something that Xavi takes pride in rather than shying away from, and he sees it as a step towards something more significant.

"It's an important record that hopefully translates into titles," he said. "If it translates into titles, it tastes better, but since there aren't any, it's anecdotal."

That much is true, and it might be that Barcelona need Lewandowski to stay prolific throughout the campaign if they are to topple Madrid from their perch.

"Once again he made the difference," said Xavi, who also added praise for Barcelona's defence in a game in which they were given plenty to do.

Mallorca had a higher expected goals (xG) total than Barcelona (1.0 to 0.7), reflecting the quality and number of their chances. The hosts edged the shot count 13-11 too, with Lee Kang-in going close to a late leveller.

"It was a solid game, without shining, but we took three very important points," Xavi said.

Lewandowski has reached nine goals in his LaLiga career quicker than any player in history. He might get to 10, 11, 12, and goodness knows how many more goals quicker than anybody too, such has been his smooth transition from Bayern Munich to Barcelona.

"He's a goalscorer, a top player, one of the best players in the world, if not the best," Xavi said. "In addition to scoring, there is how he works, presses, instructs others and talks to team-mates."

Milan head coach Stefano Pioli praised the way his team played with "stubbornness and determination" after two injury-time goals from Fode Ballo-Toure and Rafael Leao gave them a 3-1 victory at Empoli.

Pioli's side went in front through Ante Rebic just over 10 minutes from time, but a superb 92nd-minute free-kick from Nedim Bajrami looked to have earned the hosts a point.

However, 105 seconds after Milan had conceded the equaliser, Ballo-Toure turned in Rade Krunic's flick-on to make it 2-1, before Leao made sure of the three points with a delicate dink over Empoli goalkeeper Guglielmo Vicario.

The Rossoneri remain within striking distance of Serie A leaders Napoli, just three points behind, and Pioli spoke after the game of his players' team spirit.

 "I'm interested in playing with stubbornness and determination, and today we did it," he told DAZN.

"The team showed that they had mentally prepared the game well in the first half hour, but we had to score, and we didn't succeed.

"I'm happy with the team's performance. It's clear that we have to score a few more goals, and we have conceded something to a team that plays well, so that's okay.

"If we managed to break the deadlock, it would be an even more favourable situation. At some point, it was the 76th minute, and it seemed incredible to me that we were still 0-0."

The win came at a cost, though, as Davide Calabria, Simon Kjaer and Alexis Saelemaekers all went off injured.

And Pioli acknowledged how the absences were affecting his team, adding: "It is clear that the injuries have disunited us a little bit.

"I have a group of players who want to test themselves commendably, so we must also go on with injuries.

"Today we unfortunately had two muscle injuries, one who had been away with the national team and another who was not well."

Lionel Messi showed against Nice he has the quality to become the world's best player again, according to Paris Saint-Germain boss Christophe Galtier.

The Argentina international opened the scoring in PSG's 2-1 Ligue 1 win at Parc des Princes on Saturday with a lofted free-kick from 22 yards that he had won himself.

That was Messi's first direct free-kick goal for PSG since joining from Barcelona in August 2021 and the 60th of his career overall for club and country.

On the back of an underwhelming first campaign in the French capital, Messi has five goals and seven assists in his first nine Ligue 1 outings this season.

And after registering a goal in successive league games for the first time as a PSG player, Galtier has backed the seven-time Ballon d'Or winner to maintain his consistency.

"I have an incredible pleasure to see him every morning in training," Galtier said in his post-match press conference. "He is playing well and is happy every day when he trains.

"He is a player who has always had a habit of scoring a lot of goals in a season. This year he's regaining a taste for scoring and is becoming decisive for us.

"Whether he can be the best player in the world again, I'd say yes because he's in incredible shape and he's well prepared.

"He has a relationship with his team-mates that makes him happy. When he's happy, he performs; when he performs, he can reach the standards seen throughout his career."

 

Messi's sublime effort was cancelled out by Gaetan Laborde two minutes into the second half and PSG were then largely frustrated by Nice, the side Galtier left to join PSG in July.

But Kylian Mbappe proved to be the match-winner from the bench with his 83rd-minute strike, coming from his only shot on target, as PSG leapfrogged Marseille at the summit.

Asked about his decision to start with Mbappe on the bench following his return from France duty, Galtier said: "He picked up a knock to the hip against Denmark.

"He returned on Wednesday and only had 48 hours to rest. He still had a hip hematoma today. He had this apprehension but still remained available to the team.

"I had the same discussion with Lionel when he returned to the group [from Argentina action]. Unlike Kylian, he didn't pick up an injury during his time away."

PSG now have 25 points after nine unbeaten matches to start the campaign, matching their previous best starts from the 2017-18 and 2018-19 campaigns.

However, it was not all good news for the Parisians as Renato Sanches lasted only 16 minutes after being brought off the bench, aggravating an injury problem.

"Renato felt a little stretch of his left leg as he slid," Galtier said. "It's his left leg, so on the side where he was previously injured.

"He was returning from injury and preferred to come off rather than stay on. Regarding the seriousness of the injury, it is still far too early to know."

Robert Lewandowski chalked up a LaLiga record as his ninth goal of the season gave Barcelona a 1-0 win at Real Mallorca, taking Xavi's team to the top of LaLiga.

The match-winning strike from Lewandowski made him the fastest player to reach nine goals in the Spanish top flight in the 21st century, with this just his seventh game since arriving from Bayern Munich.

Real Madrid can reassert themselves as leaders when they face Osasuna on Sunday, but the sight of Barca at the summit, however fleetingly, points to the prospect of a fierce title battle.

There was plenty to satisfy coach Xavi, including a first domestic league start of the season for Ansu Fati, even if his team had to settle for a slender victory margin.

Lewandowski put Barcelona ahead in the 20th minute, collecting a pass from Ansu Fati and racing in from the left. He cut back cleverly onto his right foot to make space, cracking a powerful low shot into the far corner.

The Pole had another chance shortly after but could not apply power to his finish after being picked out by Sergio Busquets with a smart first-time pass.

Mallorca went close to a leveller when Jaume Costa tested Marc-Andre ter Stegen after good persistence on the right flank from Antonio Sanchez.

Sanchez forced another save from Ter Stegen soon after the break with a vicious cross-shot, while at the other end Franck Kessie sent a 25-yard drive just wide after good work from Fati.

Kessie and Fati made way midway through the half as Xavi brought on Pedri and Raphinha, emphasising Barcelona's squad depth.

Pedri, Gavi and Raphinha almost combined for a fantasy goal, but Barcelona ultimately did not need a second.

Milan claimed a dramatic 3-1 victory at Empoli as two injury-time goals from Fode Ballo-Toure and Rafael Leao downed the Serie A champions' stubborn opponents.

Nedim Bajrami's 92nd-minute free-kick looked to have earned a point for Empoli after Ante Rebic had put Milan ahead in the 79th minute.

But Ballo-Toure finished in the 94th minute to puncture Empoli's resolve.

With Empoli's hopes dashed, Leao added a third to ensure Milan returned to winning ways following their defeat to Napoli last time out.

Kylian Mbappe was brought off the substitutes' bench to rescue a late 2-1 win for Paris Saint-Germain against Nice in Ligue 1 on Saturday.

Former Nice coach Christophe Galtier decided against starting Mbappe, but it did not appear to matter when Lionel Messi opened the scoring from a free-kick he had won himself.

That was Messi's first direct free-kick goal for PSG – and the 60th of his career – yet Gaetan Laborde equalised two minutes into the second half for Nice.

Although Mbappe's introduction on the hour did not initially make much difference, the France forward's quality told as he swept in an 83rd-minute winner at the Parc des Princes.

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