Inter and AC Milan's decline is sad – Ribery

With Bayern Munich having dispatched Roma 7-1 and 2-0 in the Champions League this week, the French winger believes Serie A’s struggles are reflected in two of their fallen giants

Franck Ribery admits it is “sad” to see Inter and AC Milan so far away from challenging amongst the elite of Europe.

Milan claimed their seventh Champions League title in 2007, while the Inter of Jose Mourinho completed an historic treble in 2010 by defeating Bayern in the final of the tournament.

Both clubs have been in substantial decline in the past two seasons, however, and the 1-1 draw in the derby on Sunday left Milan 13 points of Serie A leaders Juventus, with the Nerazzurri a futher point behind.

Ribery, whose Bayern side destroyed Roma 7-1 in Italy before a comfortable 2-0 win at the Allianz Arena in this season’s group stage, believes the dimished power of the Milan giants leaves Italian football in a disappointing state.

“Once your league was the most attractive,” he told Gazzetta dello Sport‘s weekly ‘ExtraTime’ magazine. “Everyone used to look towards it.

“Now, historic clubs like Milan and Inter are in difficulty. The league is associated more with Juve and Roma, two very strong teams.

“It’s sad to see the Milanese in this kind of situation, so far down the table and outside of Europe. It’s sad for the fans, for the league and for the very history of the club.

“As for the matches between ourselves and Roma, I will say they are a good team, but we’re stronger, we have international players with a lot of Champions League experience.

“Plus, we must acknowledge that we managed to score from every chance we had, which won’t always happen.”

Nasri urges 'world-class' Manchester City to justify salaries

The Premier League champions are bottom of their Champions League group after four games and must now beat Bayern Munich to avoid a third group-stage exit in four years


Samir Nasri has urged this Manchester City team-mates to deliver in the Champions League and justify their “world class” talents and huge wages.

The Premier League champions are bottom of Group E, two points adrift of second-placed Roma, ahead of facing Bayern Munich and look to be facing a third group-stage elimination in four attempts.

Nasri said there would be no more excuses for City, who need a win on Tuesday, with the talent in their ranks and they must now prove they have learnt from past mistakes.

“We need to do something or otherwise next year it is going to be new players,” he told reporters. “That’s how we work when you play for a big team. You have to respond and show everyone you deserve to qualify.

“With the salary of every player and the level of those players, 90 per cent of the team is world class, then not to qualify [from the group stage] would be a huge blow for the club – and for us as well.”

“The thing in the Champions League is not just the talent, it’s not being a team, it’s the experience as well.

“We need to show we are smart players and to use what happened in the last couple of years to improve. We still have a chance and we need to take it. Now is the moment.”

Dortmund should not have humiliated Bayern – Watzke

The Dortmund CEO feels their impressive performances against the current Bundesliga holders have eventually caught up with them

Borussia Dortmund chief Hans-Joachim Watzke believes the club have paid the price for humiliating Bayern Munich 5-2 in the 2012 DFB Pokal final.

The Signal Iduna Park thrashed their arch-rivals in Berlin two seasons ago, but have since been unable to keep up with Bayern after losing Mario Gotze and Robert Lewandowski to the Bavarians.

Bayern are now also interested in signing Dortmund star Marco Reus and Watzke feels the situation would have been different had they not beaten the Allianz Arena side by such a big margin in the cup final.

“The decisive mistake was that we scored two goals too many in Berlin,” Watzke said at the club’s general assembly.

“Bayern could have accepted a 3-2 defeat, but a 5-2 loss was too much for them.

“Bayern’s dominance in Germany is down to their expenses on players.”

Dortmund have been struggling to find their best form this season and currently sit 16th in the Bundesliga table, trailing leaders Bayern by 19 points.

Messi's record will stand for 600 years – Guardiola

The Bayern boss has hailed his former player’s achievement and is hopeful he will stay at the Catalan giants for the rest of his career

Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola has voiced his admiration for Barcelona star Lionel Messi and thinks it could take 600 years before someone breaks the Argentine’s La Liga goalscoring record.

The 27-year-old netted a hat-trick at the weekend to take Telmo Zarra’s place in the record books with 253 goals in the Spanish top flight.

Guardiola worked with Messi at Barcelona between 2008 and 2012 and he has nothing but praise for his former pupil.

“You have to congratulate Messi. What he has achieved is astounding,” Guardiola said at a press conference.

“He has broken a record that everyone thought was unbreakable, a figure which was unreachable – and one which has stood for 60 years.

“It will take another 600 years before his record is broken.”

The Spaniard then went on to discuss Messi’s situation at Barcelona in the wake of the attacker’s comments suggesting he is unhappy at the club.

“It would make me happy to see Messi finish his career at Barca, I say that from the heart.”

Messi has a contract with Barcelona until June 2018.

Reus exit would be the knockout blow for Dortmund, says Kahn

The ex-Germany goalkeeper has questioned BVB’s ability to bounce back if the attacker leaves them for Bayern in the summer of 2015

Oliver Kahn believes it would effectively end Borussia Dortmund’s ambitions of challenging for the Bundesliga title if Marco Reus were to leave the club for Bayern Munich at the end of the season.

The Germany international has a contract with BVB until June 2017, but has a limited fee release clause that allows him to leave for €25 million in the summer of 2015 and Bayern are closely monitoring the 25-year-old’s situation.

The reigning Bundesliga champions previously already signed Mario Gotze and Robert Lewandowski from Dortmund and Kahn feels it would be the knockout blow if they signed Reus, too.

“It would probably be the knockout blow if Reus would now leave Dortmund for Bayern as well,” Kahn told reporters.

“It would not just hurt Dortmund on the pitch. You should not underestimate things like this. It would be a huge blow for a club like Dortmund.

“It would also affect them psychologically and leaves them wondering why they cannot hold on to their best players.”

Reus picked up a serious ankle injury in his side’s 2-2 draw with Paderborn at the weekend and will be out of action for the remainder of 2014.

The attacker has netted six goals in 11 appearances in all competitions so far this term.