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Rodri signs new contract with City
Manchester City midfielder Rodri has signed a three-year contract extension with the Premier League champions.
Rodri, 26, won five titles in his three seasons at the Etihad and was also part of the City side that reached the Champions League final in 2021.
The Spaniard has pledged to stay with the Citizens until 2027 and is delighted to secure his future under Pep Guardiola’s tutelage.
Rodri said: “Joining City in 2019 is the best decision I’ve made in my career.
“I loved every second of it. The fans have been amazing with me, I feel totally supported by the club and the manager pushes me every day.
“I have improved so much as a player, and I want to thank Pep and all the staff behind the scenes for their help. They are totally committed to helping me become the best player I can be, and I appreciate their hard work.
“We’ve had a lot of success since I arrived here, which makes me very proud. But to be honest, that success has made me even hungrier. Once you start winning big titles, you don’t want to the more you stop.
“City, I think, gives me the best chance of winning trophies and that’s why I’m so happy to stay here longer.”
Spain aim for ‘historic’ victory
Spain coach Jorge Vilda is preparing a historic win for his country in tonight’s Women’s Euro 2022 Group B encounter against Germany.
La Roja are heavily favored to reach the Wembley final on July 31 but have been rocked by injuries to all-time leading scorer Jennifer Hermoso and Ballon d’Or holder Alexia Putellas.
Vilda’s side have never beaten the eight-time European champions but are confident of recording a decisive win at Brentford Community Stadium.
Vilda, 41, said: “We’ve never beaten them before.
“I’ve been here since 2015 and we’ve always set ourselves the goal of doing things we couldn’t do, playing and beating the best teams.
“We’re going to give it our all, leave our soul there to win for the first time.”
Spain fell behind from the first minute of their tournament opener against Finland before winning 4-1.
Meanwhile, Germany cruised to a convincing 4-0 victory over Euro 2017 runners-up Denmark at the top of the group.
And Vilda is well aware of the challenges she will face against Martina Voss-Tecklenburg’s side.
He added: “We know their players inside out. They are quick on the wing and we have to neutralize that.
“Historically, they have a high self-esteem because of everything they’ve done and seen here.
“We have to be at our best in dominating possession, in positioning, in creating chances and then having a bit of luck in front of goal. The details will decide that.
“Winning would, of course, be an injection of adrenaline, motivation and morale, that’s for sure. It would be historic.”
Nani heads down
Former Manchester United winger Nani has joined A-League side Melbourne Victory.
Nani, 35, finished last season with Serie A side Venezia but cut ties with the club after they were relegated to the second tier.
The Portuguese international has signed a two-year contract with Tony Popovic’s men and is eager to get started.
He said: “I am delighted to come to the A-League with Melbourne Victory and I look forward to the challenge ahead of us.
“I’ve spoken with the coach, Tony, and I know Melbourne Victory is a club that wants to succeed and I want to play a part in helping the team achieve that.
“From what I’ve seen the fans in Melbourne are not only the best in the league but they rival the atmosphere in Europe and I can’t wait to be part of that on the pitch with a shirt. Victory and to play for them this season.”
London Derby to headline WSL opening weekend
Champions Chelsea will kick off the new Women’s Super League season against West Ham.
A thrilling series of openers at the weekend will also see 2021-22 runners-up Arsenal travel to Manchester City.
The new campaign will start on Saturday September 10 and the season is expected to end on Saturday May 27.
Newly promoted Liverpool will start life in the top flight with a trip to Reading, with a mouth-watering clash against Manchester United scheduled for the final weekend.
Last season’s best two will face off at Borehamwood on Saturday January 14, before Emma Hayes’ side have the chance to put home advantage against their title rivals in the forward’s second leg -last weekend.