Man Utd Set for £90m Bid for Barca’s Greizmann

first_imgManchester United are readying an ambitious swoop for Barcelona forward Antoine Griezmann, with the Spanish giants prepared to sell him for £90million.The French star only arrived at the Nou Camp last summer has not yet made the impact that was hoped of him, and now Barca are willing to cash in as part of a wider revamp of the squad.Now United are ready to pounce and want to recruit Griezmann as their marquee signing and show their confidence in his ability by giving him the famous number seven shirt – currently owned by flop Alexis Sanchez, according to Mundo Deportivo. The club bestowed similar faith in the Chilean star after signing him from Arsenal in 2018, but he went on a miserable run of just five goals in 45 games at Old Trafford and was shipped out on loan to Inter Milan at the start of this season.Griezmann was linked with a move to Manchester United in 2017 after the club won their place back in the Champions League, but the move failed to come to fruition with his old club Atletico Madrid undergoing a transfer embargo.The Frenchman committed to staying and helping the team through that period, but was snapped up by Barca last summer when they paid his £110m release clause.Many fans of the Spanish outfit hoped he might go down in folklore alongside favourites such as Neymar, Ronaldinho and Samuel Eto’o, but he hasn’t been as prolific as most supporters would have liked.He has just eight goals in LaLiga this season, with 14 overall and four assists.Barcelona have long been planning a refresh of their squad amid rumours that they are plotting a return for Brazilian star Neymar, and parting ways with Griezmann could allow them more funds to revitalise the team.The report says that the club will accept offers upwards of £90m for the 29-year-old, which could possibly allow them to move for Inter forward Lautaro Martinez as a replacement.United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is in need of more firepower atfter he sold Romelu Lukaku to Inter this season, with no immediate replacement coming in.The club’s board backed the Norwegian in January with the loan signing of forward Odion Ighalo from Shanghai Shenhua, but the signing of Griezmann would be a real statement of intent and offer a reliable goalscorer with a winning mentality.Griezmann’s career record makes impressive reading for United fans should the move go ahead. Since bursting onto the scene for Real Sociedad in 2009, he has netted 199 goals in 495 appearances.He won the Europa League and UEFA Super Cup with Atletico before the defining moment of his career as he lifted the World Cup with France in 2018.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

Maeva Djadi-Tabdi highlights forwards’ growth in win over Boston College

first_imgMaeva Djaldi-Tabdi doesn’t care that she had two-straight blocks. On the surface, the 6-foot-2 redshirt freshman showed growth by sticking with the play. Weeks prior against Miami, a team that destroyed Syracuse inside with the high-low play of her forwards, Djaldi-Tabdi seemed a step late each time. One move would free the offensive player, and then it would be a free shot at the hoop. But Sunday, in the Orange’s 96-69 blowout win over the Eagles, Djaldi-Tabdi went straight up. She sent Marnelle Garraud’s first layup attempt back. Boston College grabbed the ball off the miss, and when Taylor Soule went back up to the ball, Djaldi-Tabdi swatted it again, then grabbed the rebound with two hands.The crowd cheered. The bench jumped. SU head coach Quentin Hillsman clapped his hands. The Orange went on a 9-2 run and a possible close game became the blowout it was once primed to be. But after the game, Djaldi-Tabdi dodged the opportunity to credit herself.“No. 11 (Emma Guy) scored 30 points. We shouldn’t be able to give that to someone,” Djaldi-Tabdi said. “So blocks are good, but that’s something we have to work on.”In Syracuse’s (18-5, 7-3 Atlantic Coast) dominant win over the Eagles (14-10, 3-8), the forward and centers unit headlined by Djaldi-Tabdi — who led the group with 16 points on 8-of-12 shooting — showed improvement with its increased intensity on the defensive end and more seamless movement in transition the other way. As SU broke out of its recent shooting slump, the forwards were given more openings on the inside to score. And they did, outscoring the Eagles 52-30 in the paint.Despite 30 points from Guy, the Orange’s defensive unit looked strong down low. Multiple good switches and rotations led to tipped passes and blocked shots. The Orange, who average 4.7 blocks per game as a team, surpassed that mark by the 7:34 mark of the third quarter and finished with six in the game.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“I think a lot of it just comes from better positioning on the block and in the paint,” Hillsman said.All season long, the Orange have preached the importance of working the ball inside and getting their bigs going in the context of their offensive efficiency. As the Orange missed 109 threes over their past five games, players and coaches said a constant potential remedy was that more scoring and movement comes through the post players. But Miami proved the Orange have more than just an offensive identity inside. Against a powerful forwards group, SU was exposed for its inability to stick with opponents off the dribble. Against Guy and the Eagles, the Orange started off sloppy. There were a multitude of shooting foul calls on the interior and offensive rebounds bounced in the way of Boston College more often than in any other point of the game, giving second chances and more looks at the free throw line.But the intensity picked up, and SU started to find more ways to work inside. Though Guy scored handily on the inside, Hillsman said a large part of that had to do with the defense of its guards. When a guard got beat on the perimeter, it forced Djaldi-Tabdi and others to play the passing lanes, which made the Orange susceptible to a dump-off pass down low. As the game progressed, the passing lanes grew thinner. Djaldi-Tabdi read the defense and rotated to the left side for a steal in the first half, and in the second half she used her outstretched arms to deflect multiple balls out of bounds.She led a group of bigs that ran well in transition and found herself in the right spots often. She received open passes down low, in transition and on the blocks. As the offense started to exploit the Eagles from the outside, SU pushed the ball inside when it was in need of a bucket. The offensive rebounding picked up — even though Hillsman said at 60-plus percent shooting, there weren’t many to grab — with some aggressive play from Digna Strautmane, who had three of the Orange’s six blocks Sunday. When Djaldi-Tabdi checked out in the third, Strautmane gained a rhythm with six points in the frame.“After the first half they were more focused on the shooters. So, that created more lanes for us to drive,” Miranda Drummond said. “… with our post running the floor in transition, we got a lot of points. Just running the floor.”By the end of the contest, Boston College had the most dominant interior player. But, after the beginning SU’s first conference losing stretch exposed the Orange’s forwards need work, SU left with a feeling of growth.“It’s just about keeping balls alive, touching loose balls,” Hillsman said. “I just thought we did a better job second half of just keeping balls alive and just getting bodies on them.” Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on February 10, 2019 at 5:51 pm Contact Michael: mmcclear@syr.edu | @MikeJMcClearycenter_img Commentslast_img read more