The Decathlon: Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp could take sabbatical in 2022
Ten things from the world of sport on Wednesday 5 June
1. Klopp to take a break?
Jurgen Klopp could take a year’s sabbatical from football management when his Liverpool contract expires in 2022.
Sources have told ESPN that the Champions League winners are hopeful the German will extend his deal, but are minded not to put pressure on him.
It was reported earlier this week that Liverpool were poised to reward Klopp with a new long-term contract worth £10m a year.
2. Big changes at the Bridge
Chelsea are braced for huge changes this summer with manager Maurizio Sarri and talisman Eden Hazard poised to leave Stamford Bridge. According to the bookies Derby’s Frank Lampard is favourite to take over but Watford boss Javi Gracia is also a candidate.
3. Pogba and Dybala to swap?
Italian champions Juventus have told Manchester United that they are interested in re-signing Paul Pogba. Paulo Dybala could be used as a makeweight in the Pogba deal while Alex Sandro, Douglas Costa, Joao Cancelo or Miralem Pjanic are other possible options for an exchange.
4. Sterling targets Nations League glory
England forward Raheem Sterling has told his team-mates he is “not sacrificing his holidays to go home empty-handed”, the Daily Mirror reports. England face Holland on Thursday in the Uefa Nations League semi-final and Manchester City star Sterling said: “There’s no point in me missing my holiday to go away with England to see how it goes. No. I’m going there to try to win. Not in a rude or arrogant way. We’re in a semi-final and it’s doable. We’ve got hard work to put in but we should feel confident and try to win it.” Portugal take on Switzerland in tonight’s semi-final.
5. Konta hits new heights
British No.1 Johanna Konta is through to the semi-finals of the French Open tennis grand slam after beating seventh seed Sloane Stephens 6-1, 6-4. The 26th seed destroyed last year’s runner-up in an “unbeatable” performance that left seven-time winner Chris Evert “speechless”.
6. It’s Rafa vs. Roger at Roland-Garros
Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer will go head-to-head in the semi-finals of the French Open on Friday. Second seed Nadal reached the final four with a straight sets victory over Japan’s Kei Nishikori while third seed Federer beat fellow Swiss Stan Wawrinka in four sets. World No.1 Novak Djokovic will take on Alexander Zverev in the quarter-finals today (2.15pm BST).
7. Mueller’s message to India
India are playing their first Cricket World Cup match today in Southampton and they have received a good luck message from an unlikely source. Germany and Bayern Munich footballer Thomas Mueller has posted a message of support on social media, declaring his allegiance to India alongside a photo of him wearing the team’s shirt.
8. No comparisons with Lewis… yet
Max Verstappen should not be compared to Lewis Hamilton until the 21-year-old is battling the five-time world champion for the Formula 1 title. That’s not the view of the pundits or the fans but the Red Bull driver himself. He said: “To be honest, I’m still waiting for the real battle against Lewis. Hopefully this year we will be more in that fight throughout the whole season, every weekend, then we can compare each other.”
9. Maradona: I could coach Man Utd
In an interview with FourFourTwo magazine Argentina legend Diego Maradona says he could be the man to bring success back to Manchester United. “If Manchester [United] need a coach, I’m the man to do it,” he said. “I know they sell lots of shirts around the world, but they need to win trophies, too. I can do that for them.”
10. AJ: no one else to blame
Anthony Joshua says there’s no one to blame for losing his heavyweight titles to Andy Ruiz Jr.
In a video posted on YouTube, the British boxer said: “I had no panic attack. I have to take my loss like a man. No blaming anyone or anything.”
Promoter Eddie Hearn has confirmed that a rematch clause has been triggered and it could be held in November or December.