Atletico Madrid are reportedly ready to part ways with their club-record signing, setting a €100million asking price for Portuguese forward Joao Felix.

Felix, 23, was purchased from Benfica back in 2019 for a fee of €126m – shattering their transfer record by more than €50m.

He helped Atletico to a LaLiga title in the 2020-21 season, before being named the club's Player of the Season for the 2021-22 campaign, but he has now fallen out of favour, starting just five of his side's 14 league games.

Felix has been able to put himself in the shop window during his two starts to begin Portugal's World Cup group stage, including a goal against Ghana, and now Champions League contenders are expected to come calling in January.

 

TOP STORY – PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN NAMED AS ONE OF THREE SUITORS FOR FELIX

Paris Saint-Germain, Bayern Munich and Manchester United have been named the main interested parties by Spanish publication AS.

The report states Felix's relationship with head coach Diego Simeone has become too strained to continue persisting, and includes a claim that Atletico rejected a €130m offer from United before the season.

With his contract tying him to the club until 2026, there will be no need to settle for an offer deemed unsatisfactory, but AS believes anything approaching that €100m figure – including bonuses – will be enough to get a deal done.

 

ROUND-UP

– Sport is reporting Barcelona view 32-year-old Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan as a potential replacement for Sergio Busquets when the German international's contract expires after the season.

– According to Express, Saudi Arabian clubs Al Hilal and Al-Nassr are considered the leading candidates to fight it out for ex-United superstar Cristiano Ronaldo.

Paris Saint-Germain will offer Lionel Messi a new contract at the conclusion of the World Cup, according to Goal.

Chelsea and Newcastle United are competing to land 18-year-old Vasco da Gama midfielder Andrey Santos, per 90min.

– Gazzetta dello Sport is reporting Milan would like to bring in Chelsea winger Hakim Ziyech on a loan deal with the option to make it permanent, but the Moroccan's contract demands could be too expensive.

Lionel Messi says he did not disrespect Mexico during post-match celebrations following Argentina's World Cup victory last week after incurring the wrath of Canelo Alvarez.

Messi helped Argentina bounce back from a shock opening defeat at the hands of Saudi Arabia in Qatar with a 2-0 win at Lusail Stadium on Saturday.

Video footage appeared to show Messi catching a Mexico shirt with his foot in the dressing room after that win, prompting a furious response from Canelo, though the boxing superstar later apologised for his comments.

Messi does not believe he did anything wrong and has nothing to apologise for.

"It was a misunderstanding," he stated. "Those who know me know that I don't disrespect anyone. These are things that happen in the locker room after the game.

"I don't have to ask for forgiveness because I didn't disrespect the people of Mexico or the jersey."

Argentina wrapped up their Group C campaign with a 2-0 victory over Poland, with Mexico crashing out despite a 2-1 win over Saudi Arabia.

Lionel Scaloni's side will face Australia in the round of 16 on Saturday.

 

 

Lionel Messi says Diego Maradona would be "super happy" after he overtook the late Argentina great as his country's most capped player at a World Cup.

Paris Saint-Germain superstar Messi played a full part in Wednesday's 2-0 win over Poland that secured Argentina top spot in Group C and a last-16 tie with Australia.

Messi, who had a penalty saved by Wojciech Szczesny with the game level, was making his 22nd appearance in the competition – one more than his former coach Maradona.

"I only learned about this record recently," Messi said when told about his latest achievement. "It's a pleasure to be able to continue achieving these kinds of records.

"I think Diego would be super happy for me because he's always showed me a lot of affection. He was always happy when things went well for me."

Messi could yet take another record from Maradona, as the 63 chances he has created at World Cups in recorded history is second only to his compatriot, who created 67.

The 35-year-old's blank against Poland came on the back of netting in the shock 2-1 loss to Saudi Arabia and 2-0 win over Mexico in Argentina's opening two games in Qatar.

The seven shots he amassed against Poland is his highest tally without scoring in a match for Argentina since a 1-1 draw with Iceland at the 2018 World Cup (11).

 

Second-half goals from Alexis Mac Allister and Julian Alvarez ensured Argentina secured the win they needed, though, and they are now strong favourites to overcome Australia.

"After the first goal, everything went our way," said Messi, who was part of the Argentina squad that finished runners-up to Germany at the 2014 World Cup.

"We started doing again what we had been trying to do since the start of the World Cup, but which we hadn't been able to achieve for various reasons.

"Having been able to do it today, it gives us confidence for the future."

Messi will be looking to score in the knockout stages of the World Cup for the first time on Saturday, with all eight of his previous goals coming in the group stage.

He has had 23 efforts without finding the net beyond the first round, though he did assist in the last 16 in each of the 2010, 2014 and 2018 editions.

Wojciech Szczesny made a bet with Lionel Messi during Poland's World Cup clash against Argentina that the referee would not award a penalty, the goalkeeper has revealed.

The Juventus stopper denied Messi from the spot in the first half of Poland's 2-0 defeat in Group C following a controversial decision, where Danny Makkelie pointed to the spot after watching the incident following VAR advice.

Szczesny was among those convinced that it should not have been a penalty, even going as far as to make a bet with Messi during the delay of the game – though he has no intention of paying up.

"We spoke before the penalty. I told him I can bet him €100 that he [the referee] wasn't going to give it. So, I've lost a bet against Messi," he said after the match.

"I don't know if that's allowed at the World Cup and I'm probably going to get banned for it but I don't care right now. And I'm not going to pay him either! He doesn't care about €100, come on."

Szczesny's denial of Messi from the spot saw the Polish stopper become only the third goalkeeper to save two penalties at a single World Cup tournament, excluding shoot-outs, having kept out Saudi Arabia's Salem Al Dawsari in the previous round of fixtures.

His celebrations were muted, however, due to the tight contest in Group C to advance to the knockout stage – with Poland only advancing ahead of Mexico on goal difference.

"Yeah it was nice, I didn't know at the time it was going to help us get through so I tried not to celebrate," he added.

"But I've had some bad luck at the big tournaments so far, the World Cup four years ago was awful for me and I owed this much to the team and in the last two games I managed to help them a little bit."

Poland will face defending champions France at Al Thumama Stadium on Sunday in the nation's first appearance in the knockout stage since 1986.

Czeslaw Michniewicz defended Robert Lewandowski's display after Poland inched into the World Cup's last 16 despite losing to Argentina in Wednesday's dramatic Group C finale.

Goals from Alexis Mac Allister and Julian Alvarez ensured Argentina recovered from Lionel Messi's first-half penalty miss to top Group C, leaving Poland glancing nervously at Mexico's fixture against Saudi Arabia.

Poland were set to beat Mexico to second place due to their disciplinary record for much of the second half, but Saudi Arabia's late consolation in a 2-1 defeat ensured El Tri exited the tournament on goal difference.

Despite Poland advancing from their World Cup group for the first time since 1986, Lewandowski was criticised after failing to record a single shot in the match, but Michniewicz believes he was hamstrung by a lack of service.

"He was very much involved and committed, I'm not attacking anyone from our team, but we didn't help him," Michniewicz said.

"If our team would have had the higher percentage of possession, if Messi played with us and Robert with them, I'm convinced Robert scores five.

"Robert needs conditions, he needs to be assisted, and he was acting in our half. There were so many players covering him. 

"He's a great player and there were several one on ones. Messi didn't score, did he? That's all. 

"I think we're expecting Robert to score. He wanted to but we didn't have the opportunity for that."

Before Salem Al Dawsari reduced the arrears for Saudi Arabia, Poland held a narrow disciplinary advantage over Mexico – picking up five yellow cards across their group games to El Tri's seven.

Asked whether he told his team to concentrate on avoiding bookings late on, Michniewicz added: "I said to avoid stupid cards. 

"We were also discussing it on the bench, we were afraid one of the players would get a card and then we wouldn't go through. 

"Cards from the bench weren't going to count, we were told, but we were doing everything possible to avoid provocation."

While Poland failed to record a shot on target during a meek performance, Michniewicz was visibly irked by criticism of his side, choosing to relish their qualification after failed group-stage campaigns in 2002, 2006 and 2018.

"We got promoted after so many years, we played this difficult group. Let's enjoy. We still have until Sunday to criticise," he said. "Were you watching the match? What can I say? We've lost, it wasn't nice football, but it's bittersweet."

Eager to call time on his media duties, Michniewicz added: "It's really late, the prime minister is calling and I can't answer!"

Poland will now face world champions France for a quarter-final spot at the Al Thumama Stadium on Sunday, while Argentina will take on Australia on Saturday.

Lionel Messi saluted Argentina's character and determination, insisting they "strengthened" following his penalty miss to secure their crucial 2-0 World Cup win over Poland.

Lionel Scaloni's side booked their place in the last 16, bouncing back from Wojciech Szczesny saving Messi's spot-kick with second-half goals from Alexis Mac Allister and Julian Alvarez sending them through as Group C winners.

La Albiceleste, who suffered a shock 2-1 defeat to Saudi Arabia in their opening match, have now reached the World Cup knockout stages for the 13th time in 14 appearances, and will play Group D runners-up Australia on Sunday.

"The team came out strengthened after that mistake of mine," said Messi, who surpassed Diego Maradona in playing the most World Cup games for Argentina (22). 

"We knew that once the first goal went in it was going to change the game. The previous game gave us a lot of peace of mind and we went out on the pitch thinking we should win.

"The game with Australia is going to be very difficult. Anyone beats anyone, everything is very even. We have to prepare for the game in the best way we always do.

"We must be calm and go game by game. Now, another World Cup starts, and hopefully we can continue to maintain what we did today."

Nicolas Otamendi concurred: "This is a team that strengthens under pressure, it was demonstrated. Today we had a final, and we never lost focus."

While Rodrigo De Paul hailed the "personality" demonstrated by the squad, Mac Allister believes the performance will boost their belief heading into the knockout stages.

"I think today was a great team game, and that gives us a lot of confidence for what's coming," he said.

"It was a convincing performance. We look for the goal at all times. I think we went back to being the team we used to be. We handled the ball more, we had peace of mind, and we didn't despair. We played well collectively. It fills us with confidence."

Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez has issued an apology to Lionel Messi after he accused the Argentina forward of disrespecting the Mexico flag in the World Cup.

The boxing superstar reacted furiously after a video from the dressing room following Argentina's 2-0 victory over Mexico appeared to show Messi catching a Mexico shirt with his foot during the celebrations, which was on the floor.

Canelo declared "I ask God that I don't find him" but, having attracted criticism following his comments, has now backtracked and issued an apology to the Argentina captain.

"These last few days I got carried away by the passion and love I feel for my country and made comments that were out of place for which I want to apologise to Messi and the people of Argentina," he posted on Twitter. "Every day we learn something new and this time it was my turn.

"I wish both teams much success in their matches today and here we will continue supporting Mexico until the end."

Both sides went into the final round of matches in Group C with hopes of advancing to the knockout stage of the competition, with Argentina tackling Poland and Mexico taking on Saudi Arabia.

Lionel Messi is set to break Diego Maradona's record of the most World Cup appearances for Argentina after being named in their starting XI against Poland.

The late, great Maradona played 21 games at World Cup tournaments and Wednesday's match at Stadium 974 will be Messi's 22nd on this stage.

But Messi will be hoping that is not the only way he can eclipse Maradona at the 2022 World Cup.

Argentina find themselves in a tricky position heading into the Group C encounter, with elimination a real possibility.

If La Albiceleste lose, they will be knocked out, while a draw may not be enough to take them through to the last 16 either.

Although regarded by many as the greatest player ever, Messi's legacy will forever be tinged by World Cup failure if he does not lift the trophy Maradona inspired his nation to in 1986.

On the other hand, success in Qatar would arguably see Messi conquer the final frontier of the "GOAT" debate.

Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni made subtle changes elsewhere in his starting XI, with Julian Alvarez coming in for Lautaro Martinez up top, while Lisandro Martinez was replaced at centre-back by the fit-again Cristian Romero.

Enzo Fernandez, scorer of a stunning clincher in the 2-0 win over Mexico last time out, was named among the midfielders, while Scaloni swapped out Gonzalo Montiel at right-back for Nahuel Molina.

Argentina will be looking to progress to the knockout stages for a 13th time in their last 14 World Cup appearances, with their only group stage elimination during this period coming in 2002.

Meanwhile, Messi is only two short of Gabriel Batistuta's record of the most World Cup goals scored for Argentina (10).

Lionel Messi is destined to return to Barcelona one day as the player and club "deserve one last dance together", according to the Catalan giants' sporting director Jordi Cruyff.

Paris Saint-Germain star Messi's 21-year association with Barca came to an end in August 2021 as the club could not afford a new deal under LaLiga's financial fair play rules.

Messi is now into his second season with PSG, but he is out of contract at the end of the campaign and has been linked with a move to Major League Soccer side Inter Miami.

The seven-time Ballon d'Or winner turns 36 next year and Cruyff hopes to see him back at Camp Nou in the future, though accepts that it may not be in a playing capacity.

"It's clear Barcelona and Messi have to be together again one day," Cruyff told RAC1. "It may be after his career, but they deserve a final hug, one last dance together."

Messi scored 672 goals across 778 appearances for Barcelona and provided a further 265 assists, amounting to 937 goal involvements across that trophy-laden spell.

 

He featured more times (219) and scored more goals (211) under Pep Guardiola than any other head coach, with the Catalan winning 14 trophies in four seasons at the helm.

Guardiola has since spent three seasons with Bayern Munich and is into his seventh season with Manchester City, where he remains under contract until July 2025.

Speaking this week, Guardiola said he would return to Barcelona one day if the club needed him, adding that "nothing is comparable" to managing a club so close to your heart.

Asked about the possibility of Guardiola managing the Blaugrana again further down the line, Cruyff said: "He's reached the level of being able to choose his own destiny.

"Not many have reached that point; it's the dream of every professional. Whether he returns or not, I have no idea. I think he's happy at City."

After just a pair of games each, it has already been an up and down World Cup for two of the best players on the planet.

Poland's Robert Lewandowski was the villain on matchday one as he saw a tame penalty saved in the 0-0 draw with Mexico, before redemption as he claimed his first ever World Cup goal in the 2-0 win over Saudi Arabia.

Lionel Messi scored his penalty in Argentina's first game, though was unable to stop his team from suffering a humiliating 2-1 loss to Saudi Arabia, but then his exquisite strike set La Albiceleste on their way to a 2-0 win against Mexico.

These two superstars will surely be front and centre when they clash in their final game of Group C on Wednesday.

Victory for either will confirm their passage to the knockout stage, with a draw also good enough for the Poles.

A defeat would eliminate Argentina, with a draw leaving them sweating on the outcome of Saudi Arabia v Mexico.

History could be on their side, though, with their last meeting at a World Cup coming in 1978, where Argentina won 2-0 before going on to lift the trophy for the first time (Poland won their only other World Cup clash 3-2 in 1974).

 

Lionel Scaloni's men will have their work cut out though, with Poland having kept a clean sheet in each of their last three World Cup games, including both in Qatar so far despite facing 27 shots (nine on target).

Poland are looking to qualify from their World Cup group for the first time since the 1986 tournament under Antoni Piechniczek, and they last went unbeaten in all three matches in their first round group in 1982.

Following his match-winning performance against Mexico, Messi said: "Another World Cup started for us today... We can't give up now; we have finals from this point on and can't make a mistake."

Poland coach Czeslaw Michniewicz said after Lewandowski's maiden World Cup strike "one player will not win the match alone".

He could be right, but if ever there were a contest to prove whether he is, it might just be this one.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Poland – Robert Lewandowski

Lewandowski (50) was the player with most goals scored among players in the top five European leagues in all competitions last season, ahead of Ballon d'Or winner Karim Benzema (44).

The Barcelona striker cut a frustrated figure against Mexico, but was key in their win against Saudi Arabia, grabbing a goal and an assist.

Lewandowski is the only Polish player to have attempted more than two shots so far (seven), while no team-mate has created more chances than his three, level with Piotr Zielinski.

Argentina – Lionel Messi

Despite people daring to suggest Messi's powers are waning, he remains his country's talisman.

The 35-year-old has scored in six successive appearances for Argentina in all competitions, his joint-longest scoring run for his national side (also six between November 2011 and September 2012), while he now has as many World Cup goals as Diego Maradona (eight), with only Gabriel Batistuta (10) netting more for Argentina at the tournament overall.

PREDICTION

Despite Poland leading the way in Group C, Opta make Argentina favourites for this one, with Scaloni's side having a 64.8 per cent chance of winning at Stadium 974.

Poland have just a 13.8 per cent chance of victory, but they will also be satisfied with a draw, which has a 21.4 per cent chance of occurring.

Christopher Nkunku has long been inked with Chelsea, with reports he had undergone a medical in September.

The 25-year-old Frenchman netted 20 goals in the Bundesliga last season and already has 12 this term.

The Blues are undergoing a period of change under owner Todd Boehly and new head coach Graham Potter – and could be about to land a big-name target.

 

TOP STORY - NKUNKU'S CHELSEA DEAL SET TO BE SIGNED

Chelsea are on the cusp of finalising the deal for RB Leipzig forward Nkunku with contracts set to be signed, reports Fabrizio Romano.

The Blues have reached an agreement with Nkunku's German club Leipzig for more than £52million (€60m).

Nkunku, who was ruled out of the World Cup earlier this month due to a knee injury, will apparently pen a long-term deal starting from June 2023.

ROUND-UP

- ESPN has reported that  Lionel Messi has not agreed to a deal to join Inter Miami from Paris Saint-Germain following reports that he is on the verge of a deal with the Major League Soccer club.

Chelsea are reportedly not willing to let Christian Pulisic depart on loan in January, amid links with Premier League trio Manchester United, Newcastle United and Arsenal. The Blues would prefer a permanent deal for the United States international.

- Sky Sport's Florian Plettenberg claims RB Leipzig's Konrad Laimer has reached a verbal agreement to join Bayern Munich at the end of this season, with a view to a long-term deal until 2027.

Edin Dzeko is set to earn a new one-year deal with Inter, according to Gazzetta. But the 36-year-old must accept a pay cut, from about €5.5m to €3m per season (plus bonuses).

- Ecuador international midfielder Moises Caicedo, who is currently on Brighton and Hove Albion's books, is drawing interest from Manchester United, claims Sky Germany.

- Fabrizio Romano reports Brighton are in talks with Molde to sign 19-year-old Ivorian striker David Datro Fofana. The Norwegian club want more than €10m (£8.6m) for him.

Lionel Messi is not in negotiations to seal a move to Major League Soccer side Inter Miami at the end of the season, the Paris Saint-German forward's representative has declared.

Reports broke on Sunday that claimed the Argentina superstar was close to an agreement that would see him move to the United States after his contract with PSG expires next year.

Such a move would provide a huge boost to the sport in North America ahead of the World Cup in 2026, which will be held in the USA, Canada and Mexico, with Messi previously indicating a desire to play in MLS.

However, his representative Marcelo Mendez has dubbed the reports as "fake news" and made it clear discussions are not taking place.

"It's false, it's fake news. There is no negotiation for Lionel to join Inter Miami next season," Mendez told CNN.

Messi is currently focused on leading Argentina to glory in the World Cup, having scored in both of his side's matches so far – including the opening goal in the crucial victory over Mexico on Saturday.

Argentina meet Poland on Wednesday, where victory will secure a spot in the knockout stage. A draw would also be enough if Saudi Arabia and Mexico finishes level in the other Group C match.

Canelo Alvarez has issued a warning to Lionel Messi as he accused the Argentina forward of disrespecting the Mexico flag following Saturday's World Cup clash.

Argentina kept their hopes of being crowned champions alive with a 2-0 victory over Mexico, Messi scoring the opening goal with a sublime finish from outside the penalty area.

Messi has incurred the wrath of boxing superstar Canelo after footage emerged of the Argentina captain with either a Mexico shirt in front of him on the floor in the dressing room during the post-match celebrations.

As  Messi pulled off his boot, he appeared to have caught the shirt with his foot and Canelo was not impressed.

"Did you see Messi cleaning the floor with our shirt and flag ???? I ask God that I don't find [him]!!" he posted on Twitter.

The Mexican fighter added: "Just as I respect Argentina, you have to respect Mexico!! I'm not talking about the country [Argentina] I’m talking about Messi because of the b******* he did.

Canelo wrote in another social media post: "Since the Mexico shirt is on the ground, it's already an insult. Stop b*******ing about what was or wasn't."

Argentina go into their final Group C game against leaders Poland knowing a win will put them into the round of 16, while a draw will be sufficient if Mexico draw with Saudi Arabia.

Mexico need a win to have any chance of progressing, while they also need a helping hand from Poland. 

Lionel Messi has been linked with a blockbuster move to MLS club Inter Miami.

The Times report that the US franchise, co-owned by David Beckham, are ready to make Messi the highest-paid player in MLS history.

Messi is out of contract at Paris Saint-Germain at the end of the season and has also been linked with a move to his former club Barcelona.

 

TOP STORY - MESSI AND BUSQUETS COULD BE BOUND FOR MIAMI

Barcelona midfielder Sergio Busquets is set to join ex-team-mate Lionel Messi at MLS club Inter Miami, according to Cope.

The 34-year-old Spain captain is out of contract at the end of this season and has been weighing up his future at Camp Nou.

Messi and Busquets spent more than a decade together at the Blaugrana and could re-unite in Florida, where the Argentina great regularly vacations at a house he owns.

ROUND-UP

- ESPN reports Manchester United are exploring a January loan move for Chelsea's Christian Pulisic. Newcastle United and Arsenal have also been linked with the United States international by the Mail.

- Chelsea have been keeping a close watch on Bayer Leverkusen's Ecuadora centre-back Piero Hincapie during the World Cup, reports the Mirror.

- Fichajes claims that Real Madrid's German midfielder Toni Kroos has rejected the chance to move to Manchester City.

- Newcastle will move for 18-year-old Vasco da Gama midfielder Andrey Santos in January, according to the Northern Echo.

- Milan are eager to discuss lowering the €22m purchase option fee for on-loan midfielder Brahim Diaz with parent club Real Madrid, reports La Gazzetta dello Sport. The Spaniard's two-year loan deal is due to expire at the end of the season.

Lionel Messi is rumoured to become the latest superstar to move to MLS, with the Times reporting that the Argentina forward will join Inter Miami. 

Messi is out of contract with Paris Saint-Germain at the end of the season and has been continually linked with a return to Barcelona, having left the Blaugrana in 2021.

But Inter Miami are said to be "confident" the 35-year-old will sign following the conclusion of the World Cup in Qatar, where he has scored in both of Argentina's group stage matches, though he would not move until the conclusion of PSG's season.

Should the move materialise, Messi would join a host of big names to ply their trade in the United States. Here are some of the most notable examples.

David Beckham

The former England captain shocked the world when he swapped Real Madrid for LA Galaxy in 2007, though his blockbuster move certainly put MLS on the map.

Beckham made 118 appearances during his five-year spell with Galaxy, scoring 20 goals, while helping the franchise to successive MLS Cup triumphs in his final two seasons.

Thierry Henry

Arsenal and France's all-time leading scorer scored 52 goals in 135 games for the New York Red Bulls between 2010 and 2014, helping them win the 2013 Supporters' Shield and making four All-Star appearances.

Henry also coached Montreal Impact from 2019 to 2021, guiding them into the playoffs during his only full season in charge.

David Villa

Spain's all-time leading marksman became New York City's first signing when he joined from Atletico Madrid ahead of their debut MLS season in 2015.

A four-time All-Star, Villa would go on to score 80 goals in 126 appearances before departing for Japanese side Vissel Kobe at the end of the 2018 season.

Kaka

The former Ballon d'Or winner became Orlando City's first designated player when he agreed to join the new franchise in 2014.

Kaka played 78 times for City, scoring 25 goals, while he was an All-Star in each of his three seasons.

Andrea Pirlo

A multiple Scudetto winner with Milan and Juventus, Pirlo was unable to truly leave his mark on MLS during his stint with New York City.

Nevertheless, the former Italy midfielder did help the franchise reach the playoffs in 2016 and 2017, while racking up 62 appearances and netting once.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Ibrahimovic certainly hit the ground running after switching Manchester United for LA Galaxy, scoring twice on his debut in a 4-3 win over rivals Los Angeles FC, including a 45-yard screamer.

That set the tone for a prolific two-year spell for the former Sweden international, who netted 53 times in 58 appearances before returning to Italy for a second stint at Milan.

Wayne Rooney

England's all-time leading scorer helped D.C. United reach the play-offs in his first season after joining from Everton in 2018, while he will always be remembered for his last-ditch tackle and cross-field assist to Luciano Acosta that sealed a dramatic 3-2 win over Orlando City.

Rooney scored 25 goals in 52 appearances for United and, following a spell at Derby County, he returned to the franchise as head coach in July. 

Gonzalo Higuain

A league title winner with Real Madrid and Juventus, Higuain swapped Italy for the States in September 2020.

Despite missing a penalty on his debut against Philadelphia Union, the former Argentina striker went on to score 29 goals in 70 appearances before retiring at the end of the 2022 MLS season.

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