World Football Gossip Roundup: Fernando Llorente, Stephan El Shaarawy, Alex
Some players and managers just can't get along, as this Tuesday edition of the B/R World Football Gossip Roundup demonstrates.
Spanish striker Fernando Llorente looks to be on his way out of Athletic Bilbao after a training-ground bust-up with the club and manager Marcelo Bielsa.
Meanwhile, Brazilian midfielder Alex has had his contract terminated by Fenerbahce after a highly publicized disagreement with his manager.
All that and more inside. Keep reading for all the details.
Fernando Llorente Walks Out of Athletic Bilbao Training
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Spain international striker Fernando Llorente walked out of Athletic Bilbao's training session Monday after a disagreement with manager Marcelo Bielsa (via ESPN FC).
Llorente, 27, was a late substitute in Athletic's 2-0 loss at Real Sociedad on Saturday.
Llorente's contract expires at the end of this season, and over the summer he was linked with a move to Juventus.
According to the Daily Mail, Llorente still prefers Juventus, though Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester City are also interested.
AC Milan: Stephan El Shaarawy Not for Sale
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AC Milan say striker Stephan El Shaaraway is not for sale amid reported interest from Manchester United (via Goal.com).
El Shaarawy, 19, has earned one senior cap with Italy. He scored four goals in all competitions last season for Milan.
Ashley Cole to PSG Rumors Heat Up
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Paris Saint-Germain manager Carlo Ancelotti has praised Chelsea full-back Ashley Cole, calling the England international the "best left-back in the world" (via The Guardian).
Cole, 31, is playing the final season of his contract with Chelsea. Various reports have claimed Chelsea will not offer Cole a deal longer than one year, and PSG have been linked with a move for him.
"For this season, we have a very good squad but next year, I don't know what is going on," said Ancelotti. "Ashley Cole is the best left-back in the world at the moment."
Zlatan Ibrahimovic: Lionel Messi Should Not Win Ballon d'Or
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Paris Saint-Germain striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic says Barcelona forward Lionel Messi should not win the FIFA Ballon d'Or award (via The Independent).
The Ballon d'Or is awarded yearly to the world's best player. Messi has won the last three awards (the first when it was still called the FIFA World Player of the Year).
Messi scored an unprecedented 73 goals in all competitions last season, but Ibrahimovic has said someone else should win the award.
"Messi had a fantastic season but he has not won that much and he has already won the Ballon d'Or three times," said Ibrahimovic.
The Ballon d'Or will be awarded Jan. 7, 2013.
Manchester United, Chelsea Watching Teen Defender
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Manchester United and Chelsea sent scouts to watch 19-year-old Lille left-back Lucas Digne last week (via Daily Mail).
Digne has represented France at the U-16, U-17, U-18 and U-19 levels. He graduated from Lille's youth team to the senior squad in 2011.
Fenerbahce Terminate Alex's Contract
Fenerbahce have terminated the contract of Brazil international midfielder Alex (via Goal.com).
Alex, 35, had served as only the second non-Turkish captain of the club. He scored 137 goals in 242 appearances.
A statue of Alex was erected outside the club's stadium in recent weeks, but Alex had a high-profile disagreement with manager Aykut Kocaman.