Manchester City FC manager Pep Guardiola’s mother, Dolors Sala Carrió, died from Covid-19 in Barcelona on April 6. She was 82. “The Manchester City family are devastated to report the death today of Pep’s mother, Dolors Sala Carrió, in Manresa, Barcelona, after contracting Corona Virus… Everyone associated with the club sends their most heartfelt sympathy at this most distressing time to Pep, his family and all their friends,” read a statement from the club.
Dolors, a textile factory worker in Santpedor (40 miles north of Barcelona), had four children including Pep and Pere, who is a player agent. Last month Guardiola donated €1m for the purchase of equipment to help fight the virus in Spain. The pandemic has killed more than 13,000 people in the country.
Bayern President Expects Transfer Fees Decline
Bayern Munich president Herbert Hainer is convinced that transfer fees will decrease significantly following the Covid-19 pandemic. In spite of a common $100 million transfer fee during the windows these years, Bayern has always been very humble with their spending. Bayern has been more conservative but broke its transfer record by splashing out €80m on Lucas Hernandez last year.
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Hainer in an interview to a local german magazine said: "As I said, although serious predictions are difficult to make, it's obvious there'll be changes. I agree with Uli Hoeness' assumption that transfer fees will decrease. That's just logical. "When income decreases, there's less money in circulation. And given the economic impact of the coronavirus crisis on people's everyday lives, outrageous sums in the millions are even less justifiable than they already were. My hope is that more common sense will be applied here as well. I have to take my hat off to Hasan Salihamidzic and our sporting leadership. They're handling the coronavirus situation very well."
City Disciplines Walker
Kyle Walker faces disciplinary action of £240,000 after the 29-year-old and his friend invited two women escort to his apartment last week. This happened just hours after he told his 1.5 million followers to strictly follow the lockdown measures. Walker is the second-high profile Premier League player who has been caught flouting the government’s guidelines after Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish. Walker apologised for breaching the lockdown rules after it was widely reported that he held the party at his home last week breaking the rule of social distancing.
“Manchester City are aware of a story in a tabloid newspaper regarding the private life of Kyle Walker in relation to a breach of the UK lockdown and social distancing rules. Footballers are global role models and our staff and players have been working to support the incredible efforts of the NHS and other key workers in fighting the effects of the Covid-19 coronavirus, in any way we can.” the club said in a statement.
Celta Vigo's Smolov Defies Lockdown
Celta Vigo player Fedor Smolov became the second player at the La Liga club to disregard lockdown instruction by returning to his homeland Russia for his fiancee’s 18th birthday. After his teammate, Pione Sisto was criticized for driving to his hometown in Denmark despite the government's restrictions on travel, Smolov reportedly faces a fine when he returns after seeing his Fiancee, Maria Yumasheva, granddaughter of the former Russian President Boris Yeltsin.
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According to the spanish newspaper AS, A club source quoted “The player repeatedly requested permission to travel to Russia for a personal matter,” he added, “ The club could not give it to him because La Liga did not authorise it, but he promptly reported his movements and left with the commitment to return once he solved his personal affairs.”
PFA Chief on Covid-19 Pay Cuts
Gordon Taylor, Professional Footballers' Association (PFA) chief executive, insisted that Premier League players are not stupid in the row over pay cuts and called the intervention made by health secretary Matt Hancock as "astonishing". Hancock had urged top-flight players in England to do their part.
Wayne Rooney, Gary Neville and Gary Lineker have been among the high-profile players who have stated that it is unfair for footballers to be singled out during the debate over salary reductions. Taylor told the Telegraph: "I found it astonishing that Matt Hancock could come out like that when he's got his own issues with trying to get the necessary protective health equipment for our NHS workers and didn't have the tests in place either. I think if they [the clubs] can't do that [provide details on where the money will go] and explain the position fully then they have every right to expect players to mistrust what is happening."
European Football Season Update
Serie A clubs are going to be allowed to end the 2019-20 season as late as October, according to Italian Football Federation (FIGC) president Gabriele Gravina. FIGC stated on Friday that the season would not be resumed until the health and safety of all concerned is going to be determined in some way or the other.
Not too far from the Serie A clubs, a Former Barcelona star- Hristo Stoichkov believes that it is only going to be fair to most all concerned that La Liga ends now, scrap relegation and promote two teams from the second division.
On the other side of Europe, UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin has revealed the Champions League and Europa League is likely to get abandoned if restrictions are to remain unchanged till September. The finals of bothChampions League and Europa League, and the final of the Women's Champions League were scheduled to take place in May. The matches have already been postponed by the governing body.
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