PSG-Prince collab, Javi Martinez’s Bayern Munich exit, Coppa Italia revamp, and more under-the-radar stories

It has been one of the busiest weeks in European soccer this season with Manchester City and Chelsea reaching the UEFA Champions League final, and Manchester United vs. Villarreal set for the Europa League final.

On top of that, there have been other developments, notably the announcement of Paulo Fonseca’s departure from AS Roma and the nomination of Jose Mourinho as his replacement at Stadio Olimpico just weeks after his Tottenham Hotspur dismissal.

There have been other things going on too which might have slipped under the radar, so we are here to ensure that you have not missed out on anything this past week as Paris Saint-Germain announced another prestigious collaboration, Bayern Munich said goodbye to a faithful servant and more.

These are our picks.

PSGxPrince Estate

They might have exited the UCL earlier this week at the hands of City, but PSG are in a league of their own when it comes to groundbreaking commercial ventures and collaborations with the Prince Estate their latest ambitious crossover.

The collaboration will feature limited edition vinyl with previously unreleased live material from his final performance in Paris back in 2014 and apparel capsules created by some of his late-career designers from the Call & Response clothing studio in Toronto, Canada.

“The Prince Estate and PSG are honored to announce an exclusive partnership to commemorate global superstar Prince,” read the official communique. “The distinguished and internationally celebrated football club is paying tribute to the ‘Prince of the Parc’ by releasing an exclusive limited-edition 7″ vinyl and two limited-edition apparel capsules.”

The vinyl is already available, and the apparel will be rolling out before the end of this month.

In other PSG-related news, the French giants were delighted to announce on Friday that they have cracked Forbes’ top 50 most valuable sports teams in the world, entering at No. 43 ahead of NBA franchise Houston Rockets, but behind NFL‘s Carolina Panthers.

Les Parisiens do, however, top the list of 10 teams with the highest five-year percentage change in value ahead of the NFL’s Los Angeles Rams and the likes of Premier League trio Liverpool, Manchester City and Chelsea, as well as the NBA’s Golden State Warriors.

“We can be proud to have elevated PSG among the most valuable sports franchises in the world,” said chairman and CEO Nasser Al-Khelaifi. “While we take satisfaction in the progress, we remain focused on our future objectives. We are working on many projects on and off the pitch in the next few years that will consolidate and reinforce the strength of our institution and brand, for generations to come.”

Martinez’s Munich memories

Like David Alaba, Jerome Boateng and Hansi Flick, Javi Martinez and Bayern Munich are parting ways this summer. The German, European and World champions took this week as an opportunity to thank the Spaniard for nine years of loyal service after his 2012 arrival from Athletic Club in Bilbao.

“I am very proud and happy to have been part of the Bayern family for nine years,” said the 32-year-old. “I would like to thank this great club and especially our fans — you have made Munich my home! I will never forget these nine years. Bayern and its fans will forever be in my heart. Muchas gracias!”

Controversial Coppa reforms

The Coppa Italia will change format next season to just 40 clubs competing — all from Serie A and B — with Serie C and D teams no longer involved in a move akin to that of the now-defunct French Coupe de la Ligue (French league cup) which featured only professional teams.

More “appetizing” games for television rights and viewers is the thinking behind this change and the new format will come into effect from August with top-flight teams entering earlier than usual in a move that has not gone down well with clubs such as Venezia FC of Serie B.

Villas-Boas set for WRC debut

Andre Villas-Boas will make his World Rally Championship debut in his native Portugal later this month after previously crashing out of the Dakar Rally back in 2018 in his first taste of competitive motorsport.

The former Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur, FC Porto and Shanghai SIPG (now Shanghai Port FC) controversially departed Olympique de Marseille back in March and is set to drive a Citroen C3 in the WR3 — the third tier of the championship for privateer ventures.

Fiery Lyon-Monaco clash results in bans

The LFP has ruled on the feisty scenes during Olympique Lyonnais’ 3-2 win away at AS Monaco last weekend and dished out a handful of suspensions with OL pair Marcelo and Mattia De Sciglio getting one game each while ASM duo Pietro Pellegri and Willem Geubbels got two and three respectively.

Monaco and Lyon are both unlikely to now challenge for the Ligue 1 title after dropping points in recent weeks to trail leaders Lille OSC by five and six points respectively heading into another crunch weekend of games in France.

Revault’s tragic sudden loss saddens French soccer

French soccer is mourning the loss of former PSG, Stade Rennais, Toulouse and Havre Athletic Club legend Christophe Revault after he died at the age of 49 on Thursday.  

A respected player during his playing career, he remained loyal to hometown club HAC after his retirement and occupied the positions of scout, interim coach and sporting director, signing the likes of Benjamin Mendy to professional terms.

The Ligue 2 club, France’s oldest, are fighting for their survival in the second tier and American owner Vincent Volpe is expected to sell in the near future despite a recent denial.

 Source link

Back to top button
SoundCloud To Mp3