Following the footsteps of Michael Essien or Carlton Cole, many players are opting to head for the emerging football of Indonesia.
Currently second in the Indonesian Liga 1, Semen Padang have announced the signing of midfielder Didier Zokora. The former Ivory Coast international will begin a new chapter in his football career in a country were football is growing rapidly.
Michael Essien or Mohamed Sissoko recently sealed moves to the Asian country, which is becoming a popular destination for world-class footballers to end their careers.
The 36-year-old, who played for Tottenham Hotspur, Sevilla or Trabzonspor, among others, had played for Pune City and NorthEast United in the Indian I League. However, he decided a move to the increasingly competitive Indonesian league was his best option.
Germany Star To Replace Yaya At City?
It seems Pep Guardiola wants to replace Yaya Toure with a Germany star who is also being chased by the likes of FC Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Liverpool.
The Spaniard is keen on improving his in-form squad, which is yet to lose a game this season. City have begun the Premier League season on fire, winning 11 of their first 12 games so far. As a consequence, they have opened up an eight-point gap on second-placed Manchester United.
However, one star who has not featured much in Guardiola’s plans so far is Toure, and the Ivorian is rumoured to be leaving the club in January. The City boss is reportedly targeting Leon Goretzka, whose contract with Schalke expires at the end of the season, as his replacement.
The Sunday Mirror reported that Guardiola could try to lure Goretzka to the Etihad in January for a cut-price fee in order to beat competition from FC Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Liverpool, among others.
Schalke could be open to cashing in on the 22-year-old, who starred for Germany during the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup, instead of losing him for free at the end of the campaign.
Goretzka plays in a similar role to Toure and would not be cup-tied in European competitions in the second half of the season because Schalke did not qualify for the UEFA Europa League or Champions League this campaign.
The midfielder would become the third Germany star in Guardiola’s squad, joining Ilkay Gundogan and Leroy Sane.
Do you think Goretzka would be a good replacement for Toure? Have your say in the comments section below.
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Oumar Niasse: Everton striker banned for two games for diving
Everton striker Oumar Niasse has been banned for two matches after being found guilty of diving.
The Senegal forward is the first Premier League player to be punished under the new Football Association laws, which were introduced in May.
Niasse won a controversial penalty, under pressure from Scott Dann, during Saturday’s 2-2 draw at Crystal Palace.
The 27-year-old will miss Everton’s game at Southampton on Sunday and at home to West Ham on 29 November.
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Niasse denied he had « committed an act of simulation » that led to the penalty being awarded in the fifth minute of the game.
Leighton Baines converted from the spot, and Niasse later scored his side’s second equaliser at Selhurst Park.
The FA’s Independent Regulatory Commission, which includes former players, found the striker guilty of the charge when they met on Wednesday.
Incidents which suggest a match official has been deceived by an act of simulation are referred to a panel consisting of one ex-match official, one ex-manager and one ex-player.
They review video footage independent to each other and the FA only issues a charge if the panel are in unanimous in agreeing there was simulation.
Carlisle forward Shaun Miller was the first to be banned, when he was suspended for two games in October.
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