OBLAK SET TO SIGN A NEW CONTRACT

According to reports in Spain, Atletico Madrid are set to offer shot-stopper Jan Oblak a new contract. The news being circulated by Spanish tabloid AS claims that the new contract is aimed at increasing the player’s current buyout clause.

Oblak is widely considered as the best goalkeeper in Spain which is reinforced with the fact that he has won the Zamora award for goalkeepers in the past three seasons. It is understood that Atletico are willing to make the 26-year-old one of the highest paid players in the club as they look to double his current release clause currently set at €100 million.

Oblak: Playing for both is Tricky

Jan Oblak from Atletico Madrid said that he is going to play for Slovenia for the qualifiers of Euro after he had missed out on 6 fixtures of UEFA Nations League in September to November in the last year because of his voluntary absence.

In an interview, he revealed the reason behind 3 months absence from national level games. He said that he had to take a decision in autumn which was not playing. This was mainly due to his physical condition. Oblak states that it was getting difficult for him to be available for Atletico. He was in great pain and when he played, he took a painkiller. Again, if he would have played for the national team, too, it would have been a lot to handle.

FRANCE AND BELGIUM MAKE FIFA RANKING HISTORY

World Cup winners France and Belgium are the first teams to share a joint top spot at the latest FIFA rankings. In its 25 year run, two teams were yet to spare the top spot but with victories against Scotland and Iceland, Belgium joined France at the top of the ladder.

France defeated Belgium at the semi-finals of the World Cup in Russia, before going on to win the tournament. The Roberto Martinez-led side that knocked out Brazil went on to claim the third place. The Belgian side recently defeated Scotland 4-0 in a friendly game, and won their debut game against Iceland 3-0 in the Nations League. France played a goalless draw against Germany before defeating the Netherlands 2-1 in the Nations League.

NEYMAR IS NERVOUS

Brazil superstar Neymar has claimed that the mere thought of participating in his first World Cup tournament is bringing out a lot of butterflies in his stomach. The 21-year-old attacker is regarded as one of Brazil’s finest talents right now.

WORLD CUP IS COMING

As the 2014 World Cup is edging closer and closer with each day passing by some players are nearing the last few weeks in which they can impress their respective county head coaches and this is especially true for the Americans as they will play a friendly match against Mexico on April 2 before the coach Jurgen Klinsmann announces his provisional squad for the upcoming worldwide competition.

SLOVENIA MISS OUT

Slovenia failed to secure a spot into the 2014 World Cup as they lost their Qualifying match against Switzerland when they faced each other back in October and a lonely goal from Granit Xhaka edged the victory for the Swiss team.

The goal that the 21 years old midfielder from Switzerland gave his team the victory they needed in order to secure their berth into the upcoming World Cup and now they have to go against Ecuador, France and Honduras as they were pitted in the same group against those teams.

FINISH IN THIRD

Slovenia finished in 3rd place of Group H which is not enough for them to secure a spot in the 2014 World Cup even though they made a fairly late challenge at the top positions; it was just too late for them and had to settle to stay 2 points behind Iceland with 15 points.

A fairly disappointing start of their World Cup qualifiers saw them losing the initial 4 matches and only managing to secure 3 points out of the possible 15. Losing against Switzerland, Norway, Albania and Iceland saw them scrapping the bottom zone of Group H during the midterm stages of the tournament.