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Diego Costa sent off after furious referee rant against Barcelona

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The former Chelsea striker is not adverse to arguing with officials, but this time he has been given his marching orders early
Atletico Madrid striker Diego Costa has been sent off after a furious tirade against the referee in Saturday’s Liga clash with Barcelona.
The former Chelsea man was left perplexed after believing he was fouled in the 28th minute and let the official know, in no uncertain terms.
The Spain international went haring after Jesus Gil Manzano and seemed to unleash a torrent of abuse towards the official.
Unsurprisingly he was shown a straight red, causing a furious reaction from his Atletico team-mates. Following the melee Costa was actually escorted off the pitch by Barca defender Gerard Pique, while both Jose Gimenez and Diego Godin were booked for their protestations.
The game was tied at 0-0 at the time and Atletico manager Diego Simeone was forced to shuffle the pack, bringing on Angel Correa to replace Santiago Arias.
This is not the first occasion Costa has been sent off for the Madrid club since re-signing for them in 2018. The attacker actually was dismissed during his first appearance back at Atleti against Getafe.
In typically Costa-like behaviour, the 30-year-old scored in the 68th minute of the match, only to be reprimanded for his celebration.
During his three-year spell in England, Costa was also involved in a number of controversial incidents, such as an altercation with then Arsenal man Gabriel Paulista, that ultimately saw the Gunners defender sent off.
He also clashed with Emre Can during a 2015 League Cup semi-final against Liverpool, in which Costa was retrospectively banned by the FA for stamping on the midfielder.
In his time at Stamford Bridge Costa received 30 yellow cards in three years, but somewhat surprisingly, was only sent off once, in an FA Cup game against Everton.
The same cannot be said of his spell in the Spain, with Saturday’s incident his tenth career red card in total.
The match could prove to be vital in determining where the Spanish title ends up, with Barcelona currently ahead of second-place Atletico by eight points.
The hosts have named a strong side at Camp Nou despite facing Manchester United on Wednesday in the Champions League.

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Mbappe vs Giroud: Pogba clears air on ‘rift’ between France teammates

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France midfielder, Paul Pogba, has cleared the air on a ‘rift’ between teammates, Kylian Mbappe and Olivier Giroud.

Recall that Mbappe felt ‘attacked’ and ‘angry’ following Giroud’s comments that he was unhappy with France’s lack of cohesion in attack after Didier Deschamps’s side defeated Bulgaria 3-0 in their final Euro 2020 warm-up game on Tuesday evening.

Reacting to the development, Pogba insisted that there is a ‘great atmosphere’ in the French camp ahead of their Euro 2020 campaign.

Asked whether there has been any tension or rift between Giroud and Mbappe, Pogba told a pre-match press conference ahead of the Euro 2020 campaign: “No, the only tension is on the back and legs!

“There is always a great atmosphere with everyone. Between Olivier and Kylian, there is nothing. Or at least there has been nothing in front of me.

“Maybe what was said was conveyed incorrectly,” he added.

France kicks off their Euro 2020 campaign against Germany next Tuesday.

The World Cup champions will also face Portugal and Hungary in Group F.
Transfer: Giroud welcome to join me at AC Milan – Ibrahimovic

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Ferdinand, Shearer, Lineker predict Euro 2020 winner

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Alan Shearer, Rio Ferdinand and Gary Lineker have all predicted that France will win Euro 2020.

The French will expect to add a continental triumph to their World Cup success.

Dider Deschamps’ team conquered the world in Russia three years ago, with the squad still boasting of Paul Pogba, Kylian Mbappe, Antoine Griezmann and N’Golo Kante.

Karim Benzema has also returned from a five-year exile to add more strength to the already deadly attack.

UCL: Lineker, others praise Chelsea’s Mason after 2-0 win over Porto

“France to win it. They have got talent all over the pitch,” Shearer told the BBC.

Ferdinand added: “France have got the most depth and the most talent, that is why they are my favourites.”

Lineker however believes defending champions Portugal could yet retain their crown, but has still backed Les Bleus.

“It’s hard to look beyond France – they were losing finalists five years ago, they won the World Cup three years ago and now they have Karim Benzema too.

“They will be improved and they have brilliant young players too. They have to be favourites.

“Portugal are not exactly an outsider because they won the thing four years ago but they have a very good team and they will have a chance,” he said.

 

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Betting Tips

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SOCCER

22:00   VEN Caracas vs AC Lala FC    =1
22:00   ARG Tigre vs CA Estudiantes    =1
17:00   GEO Dinamo Batumi vs Telavi   = 1
16:00   FIN Inter Turku vs Mariehamn   = 1
17:00   ALG Relizane vs Oran    =X2

Good Luck!

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