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Daily Schmankerl: Juventus join the race for Leo Messi, De Bruyne’s agent arrested, Muller talks Bayern 8-2 Barcelona, and MORE! (Updated)

Barca fans won’t like what Muller had to say about their team. That’s probably why Messi wants to leave?

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Juventus join the race for Leo Messi (L’Equipe)

With all the hullabaloo about Messi leaving Barcelona, it was just a matter of time before someone linked him with Juventus. L’Equipe are the first to jump on the clickbait gravy-train, as they report that the Italian champions have entered the race to sign the Argentinian.

If successful, this transfer would mean that we get to see Leo Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, the two best footballers of this century, finally play on the same team. However, the report should be taken with a healthy dose of salt. Most (reliable) sources have reported that Messi has already chosen Manchester City as his next destination, and that’s only IF the transfer goes through (which is far from certain). PSG are also reportedly in the mix, with Angel Di Maria and Neymar making attempts to persuade the Barca captain over to their side.

While Juventus’ owners, the holding company Exxor, have plenty of money to throw around, they’d rather spend it to help Ferrari ruin Vettel’s career. This means it’s unlikely that the Turin-based club will be able to afford Messi’s services. They already have to pay Ronaldo, and that’s been a huge burden for them financially. In any case, the report makes for a great headline, so we salute L’Equipe for the Schmankerl fodder.

Kevin De Bruyne’s agent arrested (Sporza)

Manchester City star Kevin De Bruyne’s agent, Patrick De Koster, has been arrested in Belgium. This comes after the agent’s home was raided by police after a complaint from the Belgian star. From the report:

“Patrick De Koster is suspected of money laundering and forgery,” said Eric Van Duysse, the prosecutor’s spokesperson. The investigation is conducted by the Central Anti-Corruption Service (CDBC).

De Koster works for J&S International Football Management, an agency which represents a number of players from Belgium. De Bruyne is by far their highest profile client. There’s not much more info to go on, but we imagine that the matter will go to court once the police conduct their investigations. Man, football really never stops giving us new stories.

Update: De Bruyne caught his agent off-guard

According to HLN, the the Belgian star caught his agent completely off guard. De Koster had been negotiating the deal with Man City over De Bruyne’s new contract for several months. The player apparently made the complaint in secret.

We still have no idea WHY this complaint was made, but those details will probably become known soon enough. It must be quite serious, because the player had once called his agent a “second father.” For now let’s just appreciate the opening line of this article:

Kevin De Bruyne is a strange little guy, always has been.

Interesting way to start your report, I gotta say.

Muller: Barcelona were “very relaxed” in the warm-up (Marca)

In a recent interview, Bayern Munich star Thomas Muller spoke about his team’s 8-2 thrashing of Barcelona in the Champions League quarterfinals. As we pointed out in our extensive coverage of the tie, it was the worst defeat by any team in the knockouts of the Champions League. Speaking about the tie, Muller gave credit to Hansi Flick for Bayern’s utter dominance, pointing out the differences in Barca and Bayern’s preparation.

“I congratulate our coach,” said the Raumdeuter. “Just one example: We had been warming up for ten minutes when Barcelona walked out onto the field to warm up. They were very relaxed. That doesn’t have to mean anything.”

Muller, who scored two goals and registered one assist, was named Man of the Match for that game. He said, “the match could have ended differently, but I think it turned out that we were very hungry.” Knowing him, he probably said something along the lines of “we were hungry, so we 8-2 much!” which the interviewer cut out of the transcript for the sake of decency.

In any case, the lethargic warmup would explain why Barca looked so far out of their depth when facing Bayern. Ronald Koeman has a ton of work to do at that club.

It’s been 11 years already?

How time flies. Check out some vintage interplay between Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery:

The most adorable thing you’ll see today

Thiago, why are you leaving us???

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