Mafia, money-grabbers and robberies – Ronaldo’s world reacts to Modric Ballon d’Or win
Well, the Ballon d’Or went largely as expected. The result pretty much blew up the internet in a frenzy of bickering – which is largely what the prize (and the internet) is designed to do, no matter who had won.
In the end, Luka Modric came out on top after a strong World Cup performance for Croatia and winning the Champions League with Real Madrid.
The Croatian has now broken the Ronaldo / Messi duopoly which has not gone down well with supporters and family members of the Portuguese camp. Let’s start with Cristiano Ronaldo’s sister, Elma Aveiro, who appears to be akin to Luther, President Obama’s official anger translator from Key and Peele.
“Unfortunately, this is the rottenness of the world we live in, between the mafia and money-grabbers,” wrote Elma on Instagram taking the news well. “God may take his time, but he never forgets.” Ok…let’s step away from that. Although it doesn’t get any better.
How about this from Ronaldo’s best friend, Miguel Paixao? “This is the cherry on top of embarrassment and robbery,”– this verbal body slam was ‘liked’ by CR7’s partner Georgina Rodrigeuz, which apparently in social media terms counts as a full-on endorsement.
Tune into our Sports Burst live show on our beIN SPORTS Facebook page at 12PM ET / 9AM PT for some of the finest words from the Ronaldo camp the morning after the night before.
Mourinho’s double-speak on top four finish
Backtrack alert! Well, two backtracks at the same time.
Both belong to Jose Mourinho who was speaking on Tuesday morning ahead of the Premier League humdinger against Arsenal the following day.
More of Jose's comments from the press conference. #MUFC— Manchester United (@ManUtd) December 4, 2018
The first was sneaking out of the contention made recently that it would be "a miracle" if Manchester United were to finish the end of the season in the top four places in the standings, with the chance to massively disappoint in next season’s Champions League.
To be fair, on current form it would be a miracle if United were to finish in the top half of the table.
"We don't need to waste points where we don't need to waste," was the recalibration from the Special One, although the second backtrack does seem to refer to an earlier boast that his team would finish top four...now the aim for United is come "close to these positions."
"We don't need a miracle [to finish in the top four] at all," Jose says. "I think we need a good run of results and we don't need to waste points where we shouldn't be wasting them." #MUFC— Manchester United (@ManUtd) December 4, 2018
A defeat on Wednesday in Old Trafford would make that task the harder considering United is currently lying eight points from Arsenal - who coincidentally lies in fourth sport.
Elsewhere, Mourinho refused to talk about the story that Paul Pogba had been called a 'virus' by his good self in the locker room after Saturday's draw to Southampton. Heck, the happy-go-lucky coach even refused to talk about Arsenal, which would be traditional in a pre-match press conference - "I have my opinion, I keep that to myself." Ok, then.
Manchester City with chance to stretch lead at the top
Over to the noisy neighbors and Manchester City has the chance to temporarily move five points clear at the top of the EPL table today with Liverpool playing on Wednesday. Pep Guardiola's undefeated men are away at Watford.
The previously perky Bournemouth will be looking to avoid five defeats on the bounce in a home clash against Huddersfield. Brighton takes on Crystal Palace in a bit of an old-school grudge match on the south coast. West Ham plays Cardiff in the fourth of the night's encounters.
You can catch the best of all the action on the XTRA at 7PM ET / 4PM PT.
Meanwhile, Southampton continues a search to replace Mark Hughes as manager after the Welshman was sacked on Monday. The Saints appear to be going down the hipster route with former RB Leipzig boss, Ralph Hasenhüttl and Quique Sanchez Flores leading the chase.
Athletic ditch coach as Thierry Henry reflects on life choices
A 3-0 defeat against Levante on Monday has seen Athletic Bilbao pull the plug on Eduardo Berizzo's tenure at the club.
The side that famously only selects players from the immediate Basque region is currently in the relegation zone with just the single win from 14 this season.
Elsewhere in Spain and with the Round of 32 second-leg games in the Copa del Rey gets underway today. Four ties are taking place on Tuesday with Espanyol as the biggest team most likely to suffer a shock, 2-1 down to Cadiz from Spain’s second division.
That game is live on beIN SPORTS live at 3:30PM ET / 11:30AM PT preceded by the saddest looking face in the multi-verse. Yep. Poor Thierry Henry.
The Frenchman who is becoming a meme for all the expressions of gloom its possible for a human to deliver is leading Monaco once again into the breech.
The collapsing Monte Carlo outfit is currently in the relegation zone and in action at Amiens, another side in the drop zone and looking to make Thierry Henry assess his career choices once again.