Problems Mount for Arda Turan as Turkish Government Launch Investigation Into Alleged Islamist Ties

Barcelona midfielder Arda Turan is said to be facing an investigation into his suspected ties with Islamist clerics organisation Fethullah Gulen.

According to Turkish publication Hurriyet (H/T Diario AS), the Istanbul Prosecutor’s Office has ordered an investigation into the alleged links, with the aforementioned organisation having been blamed for the failed coup d’etat that was attempted in July 2016.

Turkish Spor Toto Super Lig'Medipol Basaksehir FK v Kayserispor'

Turan, currently on loan from Barca, plays for Istanbul Basaksehir. He is not the only player suspected of being involved with the Islamist sect, as teammate Emre Belozoglu and former player Okan Buruk are also implicated. Former Bursaspor technical director Bulent Korkmaz is believed to be linked as well, per the report.

The Prosecutor’s office harbours suspicions regarding the aforementioned individuals, who they believe either have direct links or offered to help Fethullah Gulen, considered a terrorist organisation by the Turkish government since the attempted coup.

Turan was recently accused of other crimes, per reports, and is said to be facing between three and 12 years in prison after uttering threats, causing injuries and being in possession of an illegal weapon during a recent altercationthat saw Turkish singer Berkay Sahin sustain injuries.

Turkish Spor Toto Super Lig'Medipol Basaksehir FK v Kayserispor'

The former Atletico Madrid star reportedly broke Sahin’s nose with a headbutt and is also reported to have harassed the singer’s wife, Ozlem Adad, prior to the incident.

With the singer and his wife having gone to a hospital after the fiasco, reports claim that Turan arrived at the medical facility shortly after and fired off a pistol. While shot did not cause any injuries, it does amount to “shooting with a firearm in a way that may induce fear or panic” and could carry a serious consequence.


Barcelona Midfielder Arturo Vidal Handed €800,000 Fine for Involvement in 2017 Bar Fight

Barcelona midfielder Arturo Vidal has been fined €800,000 by a Munich court after being found guilty of assaulting another male during a nightclub fight in 2017.

That is according to The Mirror, who report that the player could have possibly faced a 10-year prison sentence but has escaped with a fine after hitting his victim over the head with a vodka bottle.

Vidal was fined based on 80 days worth of wages and it was determined that he makes €10,000 a day as part of his new Barcelona contract.

The Chilean moved from  Bayern Munich over the summer, joining the Catalan side on a three-year deal, but has since struggled for playing time. It has been quite a rough period for him, considering his recent reprimand by the club as a result of his social media activity.

The player and his half-brother were both found guilty of assaulting another male at the Munich’s Crown Club in September last year, with the brawl caught on camera.

The incident occurred after Bayern’s 4-0 win against Mainz. The player went to celebrate at Munich’s popular, annual Oktoberfest celebration, after which he continued the party in the VIP lounge of the aforementioned establishment.

Vidal’s father-in-law was also fined €35,267, while his younger brother, Sandrino, has also been handed a fine of €18,004.

The midfielder was not present at the hearing as he was playing for Chile against Mexico. But he has been ordered to pay in the fine in €10,000 instalments over 80 days.

Valencia CF v FC Barcelona - La Liga

Vidal was recently described as “lacking respect” by Barca sporting director Pep Segura after he vented over his lack of playing time via social media and has been urged to correct his behaviour by the club.


New Monaco Boss Thierry Henry Talks Up Wenger & Guardiola Influences as He Takes First Steps

New Monaco boss Thierry Henry has revealed that he draws inspiration from having worked under two of the best managers of their generations.

The former Arsenal and Barcelona forward achieved much success playing for both Arsene Wenger and Pep Guardiola, and with his coaching dream finally realised with his recent Monaco appointment, he has credited his former bosses with his development as a leader.

Henry also worked under Belgium boss Roberto Martinez as an assistant coach, being part of the managerial team that led the nation to a third-place finish in the World Cup during the summer.

Arsenal v Leeds United - FA Cup Third Round

He’s now about to embark on a new challenge as a head coach and it will be very interesting to see how he does in his new role.

“I learned from those I worked with, whether they challenged me, or whether sometimes they did the wrong thing,” the Frenchman told beIN Sports.

“Arsene unlocked so many things in my mind – what it meant to be a professional, on how to perform.

“You learn from people, but also need to put your own mix into it.”

Barcelona v CA Osasuna - La Liga

Henry also revealed having “re-learned” the game when he moved to ?Barcelona to work under Guardiola, now in charge at ?Manchester City.

“Pep for me is the reference. I re-learnt how to play the game when I went to Barcelona under him.

“With Pep you can just talk about the game and he will not go to sleep. You will fall asleep and he’s still talking. He is way ahead of the game.”

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Henry takes over a struggling team who are currently in 18th place in the Ligue 1 standings with just six points to their name and already 21 points adrift of leaders Paris Saint-Germain. But he relishes the challenge and has said that their offer was one he simply could not turn down.

“For me when the offer came it was logical,” he added.

“This is where I started. This club will always have a big place in my heart, so to be able to come here and start again is a dream come true.”


Barcelona Defender Samuel Umtiti Set to Miss Pivotal Clashes With Inter and Real Madrid

??Barcelona centre-back Samuel Umtiti is set to miss out on a number of pivotal fixtures coming up in the calendar, after failing to recover from the knee issues that have plagued him since the World Cup.

The Frenchman has been absent from the Blaugrana’s last three matchday squads, as well as his country’s for their Nations League clashes, and could be out for another month. 

As reported by ?Marca, the 24-year-old was examined by doctors this morning at the Sant Joan Despi Hospital, and they confirmed he would be ineligible for ?Barca’s games against Sevilla, ?Inter and the Classico against ?Real Madrid. 

FC Barcelona v Girona - La Liga Santander

More worrying, though, is the nature of the issue. The Cameroon-born French international has been suffering from chondropathy – a condition in the cartilage – intermittently since the World Cup, and was even hampered by it in Russia. 

With such a sensitive injury, the club are in no mind to rush the defender back to the starting XI, and are persisting with a non-invasive, ultrasound approach to the treatment. The doctors admitted that there had been promising signs of recovery in recent days, but that a specific return date could not be set as of yet. 

CD Leganes v FC Barcelona - La Liga

While his return could come in the middle of November, there is some concern that, should this relatively conservative treatment process fail to relieve the problem, then an arthroscopy

operation would be needed. 

This would sideline Umtiti until the start of 2019, and even then, such a procedure wouldn’t guarantee the re-emergence of the injury further down the line.


Andres Iniesta Hoping for Reunion With Barcelona Next Summer Amid Rumours of Pre-Season Friendly

Vissel Kobe midfielder Andres Iniesta has admitted that it would be ‘fantastic’ to reunite with Barcelona next summer in a pre-season friendly.

The 34-year-old left his boyhood club ?Barcelona in May, bringing to a close his glittering 16-year career at the Nou Camp. The three-time Champions League winner moved to Japanese side Vissel Kobe where he now stars in the J1 League. 


Barca have added the Asian continent, including Japan, as part of their pre-season schedule for next summer and Iniesta is hoping that his current side can test themselves against the Spanish giants. 

“It would be fantastic if it could be fulfilled,” Iniesta said at a press conference, quoted by Spanish outlet Marca. 

“I think it would be an unprecedented opportunity for both me and the Japanese supporters.”

During his career at the Catalan club, Iniesta won nine ?La Liga titles and six Spanish Cups. Not forgetting, his two European Championships and World Cup winners medal for the national side.

Spain's midfielder Xavi (L) hugs goal sc

In total, Iniesta played an incredible 675 matches for ?Barca in all competitions, scoring 57 goals and supplying a further 140 assists. All while building one of the greatest midfield partnerships with the now-retired Xavi.

For his current club he has played ten matches this season, finding the back of the net on two occasions, with injury currently restricting his game time.