It has been a few years in the making and still appears a few years off arriving, but football fans regularly contemplate what life will be like when Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo either fall from their ridiculous standards or retire gracefully. Aged 31 and 33 respectively, they are at the time of the career when most normal footballers exhibit some signs of decline. Yet the reason they have had such longevity at the top of the game is their work ethic combined with ludicrous ability. Perhaps it could be the arrival of two new bona fide superstars that will encourage Messi and Ronaldo to hang up their boots.
On the eve of their preparations for this Summer's FIFA World Cup, Spain's plans will have been thrown into disarray. Julen Lopetegui, who had only signed a new contract until 2020 as recently as May of this year, is no longer in charge of the nation which won the 2010 edition of the tournament.
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has praised the impact of Ashley Young during the current campaign and believes the Englishman could have a similar role to play next term. The 33-year-old has been the undisputed first-choice in the left-back position this season, contributing two goals and seven assists in 36 appearances for the club.
Portuguese goalkeeper Joel Pereira is keen to live up to his potential with Manchester United. The 21-year-old is currently the Red Devils’ third-choice goalkeeper behind David de Gea and Sergio Romero, but he has been backed by Jose Mourinho to become one of Portugal’s best shot-stoppers of the current generation.
Armenia international Henrikh Mkhitaryan has stressed that his 18-month spell with Manchester United was a success. The 29-year-old netted 13 goals in 63 appearances for the Red Devils before making the switch to Arsenal in a swap agreement involving Alexis Sanchez.
Manchester United midfielder Nemanja Matic has admitted that the team can provide no excuse for their lacklustre showing against Sevilla in the round of 16 of the Champions League. The Red Devils failed to show up over the course of the two-legged tie, and they eventually lost by a 2-1 aggregate scoreline.
At 35 years old, Jermain Defoe is fast-approaching the end of his career at the top of the game. If he does a John Terry and decides to move down a league or walks off into the sunset a rich man, there’s no doubt the East London-born scorer has put in a shift over the years.
Bayern Munich midfielder Arturo Vidal has reportedly delivered a blow to Manchester United's transfer ambitions for the summer. The Chile international has been identified as one of Jose Mourinho's prime targets to bolster the centre of the park, though the 30-year-old appears content to remain with the Bavarian giants.
Prior to the 2014 FIFA World Cup, Germany was positioned in 2nd place of the FIFA World Rankings but after the team of Joachim Low emerged as the victorious side with a 1-0 triumph over Argentina, they earned an escalation to the 1st spot, and they've been at the top pretty much ever since, even though there has been a changing of the guard in recent years. If anything they are more vibrant, exciting and entertaining now than ever, and well worth watching in action on fussballlivestream.tv if you get the chance!
Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho could extend his spending spree this summer after being given the backing to spend another £100m on new signings.