Rivaldo Exclusive: Very talented Veron should plump for City over United

There are strong rumours that Manchester United and Manchester City are chasing Gabriel Veron‘s signing from Palmeiras and I think that the Manchester club that wins this particular fight will be properly rewarded.

Veron has lots of talent and a bright future ahead so it’s no coincidence to see two big English clubs chasing him, and he could perform for either club without problems.

If he has the choice between the two clubs, I suggest City because they are the more more stabile club nowadays, with a solid tactical system implemented by Pep Guardiola, which is not the case with Manchester United, despite also being a fantastic club.

Willian Jose will have his chance at Wolves

Wolves decided to bring Willian Jose on a six-month loan from Real Sociedad. The Brazilian attacker will have the perfect chance to show his credentials by playing in the best league in the world.

He has been doing a solid job with Real Sociedad in previous seasons, scoring many goals and proving his class in front of goal. That didn’t surprise me because I played with him at São Paulo in 2011.

With Raul Jimenez still recovering from a serious head injury, Willian Jose should have the required game time to show his class and this is a huge opportunity to boost his career.

Barça’s financial problems could force a Coutinho’s exit

Barcelona were not in good financial health pre-pandemic, but things got nasty in the last year and beyond Lionel Messi’s almost inevitable departure, the club may need to sell some more important players to generate income.

As I mentioned previously, the club’s board made a mistake by not selling Lionel Messi while he was still under contract, something Real Madrid did with Cristiano Ronaldo receiving around €100M in exchange.

It’s sad to see such a talented and valuable player leaving Barca for free when the club is going through so many financial problems.

But looking to potential transfers that might occur, I think Phillipe Coutinho time may have be coming to an end. He has admirers in England and perhaps Barcelona could generate some good income with his sale, allowing them to keep others like Ousmane Dembélé and Antoine Griezmann.

The Brazilian never managed to show his best football in Spain, and since his better moments happened in Premier League I’m sure there will be clubs interested in his services and available to pay considerable amounts, although not quite what Barcelona paid to Liverpool!

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I hope that Barcelona overcome these tough times

It’s clear that the current directors made some errors during this presidency, but COVID-19 played the bigger role in aggravating the situation. In the early 2000s Milan also experienced in a big crisis and they are still fighting nowadays to return to European top football, so, I expect that a new president can take things around with the right decisions in terms of signings, sponsorships, and more to prevent the club drowning in a similar situation.

I don’t believe Barcelona will suffer the same fate, but it’s important to take immediate measures to prevent it. Barcelona fans simply aren’t ready to stop fighting for titles for a decade or two. Out of question.

Koeman is being brave by playing the youngsters

Attending to current Barcelona financial problems, the club needs a brave manager capable of using younger players from La Masia and that’s exactly what Ronald Koeman is doing right now in which I consider to be very good work.

He recently restarted to use Riqui Puig and the midfielder is proving his value with great personality reminding me of Xavi when he first started to show up at Barcelona squad.

Along with Pedri, who is playing more often, Barcelona may have a glimpse of the club’s future in a time we are going through a clear reformulation on the squad. It will be important to mix things nicely to keep Barcelona fighting for titles during this phase.

Vinicius Jr must persist

At Real Madrid, Zidane seems to be using Vinicius Jr lesser often and many are already arguing that the Brazilian should chase a potential loan or transfer in the current transfer window to develop his skills in another club that might trust more in his game.

But I disagree because he already showed his quality to Zidane and his ability to be a regular starter, he only needs to be more consistent. I’m convinced that with a bit more persistence he could finally earn Zidane’s confidence.

But to achieve such a goal he must keep working hard and trusting his own skills instead of giving up and conforming with his current situation.

Casemiro surprised me with his solid performances at Real Madrid

For me, Casemiro is a very experienced player but I didn’t imagine that he could become so crucial to Real Madrid.

He is the kind of player who brings joy to training and matches, and have been developing his skills each day, becoming a player capable of going forward and scoring many important goals, a little bit like Sergio Ramos.

Nowadays he is a certain starter at Real Madrid, and even if I didn’t imagine this coming a few seasons ago, the fact is that he deserves it entirely thanks to his great commitment and performances.

Luiz Adriano and Marinho could decide CONMEBOL Libertadores

The CONMEBOL Libertadores Final will be played this Saturday in a 100% Brazilian clash between Palmeiras and Santos. Although the Betfair customers make Palmeiras favourites, for me there is no favourite.

Honestly, I think that the team which manage to be tactically and technically stronger could have the edge, but that must be complemented with some mental power and group spirit to lift the trophy in the end.

Palmeiras are having a great campaign with Abel Ferreira, fighting in three competitions and having the chance of a glorious end of season. Santos are very well coached by Cuca, who has gathered a group that had some financial problems midway through the season and made them very tough to beat nowadays.

Both sides have players with quality and experience which could make the difference in the game. For that reason, I have to mention Luiz Adriano from Palmeiras and Marinho from Santos as potential heroes from both sides because they had good international experiences at other clubs and seem prepared for these occasions.

In terms of score prediction and having some affection for Palmeiras I will bet on a tight 2-1 win allowing Palmeiras to claim his second CONMEBOL Libertadores title.

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