Neuer: I’ll retire when I’m no longer needed

first_imgManuel Neuer says he will retire from football when he feels he is no longer needed by Bayern Munich and Germany.The 33-year-old has struggled with injuries and faced long spells on the sidelines in recent years, but he remains the first choice goalkeeper for club and country and captains both sides.Neuer, who has 89 Germany caps and has made over 340 appearances for Bayern since joining in 2011, says he is still enjoying playing for the Bavarian side and his national team, insisting he still has an important part to play. Article continues below Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream However, the former Schalke star knows what it will take for him to call time on his career, telling Welt am Sonntag: “When you are no longer needed and you feel it, it is difficult to get up and motivate each day.”When your experience is needed and your players need you, that drives you on.”I have the feeling that I am very much needed here in the national team and that everyone is happy that I’m here. It’s clear that I have to show it in my performance.He added: “[My longevity] is a result of my love for this sport. It excites me a lot when I’m on the pitch training or playing. It’s a great fulfilment for me. I’m 33 years old bu when I’m on the pitch I always feel that I can improve on my goalkeeping. “I’m still as annoyed with things that don’t work out as they did nine or 10 years ago and I’m still happy about things that work out.”These are signs that mean something to me. Namely, how ambitious I am still. [I want to] play as long as my body can do it, I’m having fun and I’m needed.”Neuer, who will be 35 years old when his current contract with Bayern comes to an end, has noticed his body is changing with age, but he has adapted his training style to help stay on top of his game. “At a young age you don’t have to do so much to keep fit,” he added. “It’s changing. I’ve already noticed that, so I pay close attention to what I do and how I approach things.”last_img read more

Kane isn’t undroppable for England – Southgate

first_imgEngland manager Gareth Southgate has confirmed Harry Kane will start against Kosovo on Tuesday, but is adamant his skipper is not “undroppable”.Tottenham striker Kane scored a hat-trick as the Three Lions eased to a 4-0 Euro 2020 qualifying victory over Bulgaria on Saturday.It comes after he had to settle for a place on the bench in the Nations League semi-final against Netherlands after missing much of the latter stages of last season through injury. Article continues below Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream Southgate plans to make changes for the game at St Mary’s but says Kane’s quality makes it difficult for him to be left out, and he will resist the temptation to rest him for what will be the first ever meeting between the two nations at senior level.”In the summer we decided that he wasn’t ready to start, so I don’t think you can have a player that is undroppable, because that is a dangerous route for any team and it is not a healthy position for a player,” Southgate said. “But it is safe to say we won’t be dropping him for tomorrow. His level of performance is so high that dropping him would be a rare occurrence. “We might freshen the team a bit, that will be important. We don’t need to, everyone is fit and available. We need to make sure we get the balance right.”We need to get the right attacking and defending profiles to make sure we win the game.”Harry Kane England BulgariaSouthgate is wary of the threat posed by a second-placed Kosovo side, who have already defeated Czech Republic in Group A.”We are expecting a different sort of challenge to Saturday – but one we are looking forward to,” he said. “It will be a very different style of game. Kosovo will be very high pressing, hard working, a more attacking threat than we faced on Saturday.”Maybe there will be more space to play up front. Whatever we learned from Saturday’s game this is a completely different challenge.”Southgate, meanwhile, gave praise to midfielder Declan Rice for the way he has dealt with social media abuse directed towards him and his family after switching international allegiance to England from the Republic of Ireland. “When I spoke with Declan about the possibility of him transferring association across, I was very conscious that this was something that could happen,” Southgate said. “That is why I wanted to tread very carefully, to make sure him and his family had all the time they needed to make a decision.”I never pushed, because I suspected that this would be part of the consequences of that.”I think he has dealt with everything incredibly maturely.”last_img read more