“I liked him a lot. He was my idol. That’s why I wear a long-sleeved jersey and wear the No7.”
France forward Antoine Griezmann tells The Guardian that David Beckham was his idol growing up

“I know nearly all the clubs, but I had no idea where they are. So if you would've told me Norwich was over there, I would've believed. Now I know. Nottingham I know because of Robin Hood.”
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp tells BBC Sport's Gary Lineker about the map of England in his office

"I’ll tell my team-mates that this might be the only time in their lives that they get to play at a World Cup. We’ve been given an opportunity, and we have to seize it. We have to try to make history, which would be incredible. We must give 100 per cent, because it’s a World Cup, and there’s no room for error."
Cameroon captain Soline Djoubi speaks with FIFA.com ahead of her nation's first appearance at the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup

"I felt like Pep and Bayern had seen something in me, and I wanted to show them that they weren't wrong. It's cliche to say, but this past year has been like a dream has come true. I'm only 21 years old, and every day, I get to walk onto the pitch with some of the greatest footballers in the world. World Cup winners, European championship winners and Champions League winners are now my team-mates."
Bayern Munich midfielder Joshua Kimmich writes in The Players' Tribune

"I was distracted by football, it was important for me because it passed my time and made sure that I did not get involved in other things. The pitches were not great and you'd hit your toe and there would be blood everywhere. But you just continued. They were the surfaces we had at the time and it was fun."
Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Victor Wanyama talks with The Guardian about growing up in Nairobi, Kenya

"He has proved he is one of the best players by scoring the decisive penalty. It's not been easy [for Neymar] because to be there [Brazil] meant there was a lot of pressure to win, even though he's accustomed to that."
Barcelona defender Gerard Pique on team-mate Neymar, in conversation with Marca

"MUFC will be my last club in Europe. I respect other clubs, but Manchester United was the only one which could make me leave Bayern Munich. I will be ready if the team needs me. This is all I can say about the current situation. I want to thank the fans for the amazing support over the recent weeks."
Bastien Schweinsteiger speaks about his future on his Facebook page

"It was a very special moment. I knew it was a possibility when Rachel was called into the squad and I did think about it before the game but had forgotten while the game was raging on. When Rachel came on to play alongside me in midfield, it actually gave me a boost. It was an incredible feeling that words could not describe."
Donna Shaw talks about playing on the same team as her daughter Rachel Wolecki for Jeanfield Swifts Ladies in the Scottish Women's Premier League 2, in an interview with The Daily Record

"Working with Messi has to do with the team. If you look at both the Copa America Centenario semi-final and final, you can see the difference: In one match he had a lot of options [to pass the ball and look for options on offence], in the other he didn't. The team has to do that for him, they have to be sure that when they pass the ball to him, he must have choices to pass it back, because if there is one thing Messi has shown us, it is that he makes very good choices. We need to not be Messi-dependent. Yes, he is our MVP, but the rest of the team has to give us more depth as well."
Argentina head coach Edgardo Bauza speaks with ESPN about the team's relationship with Lionel Messi on the pitch 
 
"I can't judge that move, just like most of us can't. He grew up in Dortmund and he is for sure one of the most gifted players we have at the moment. There a few players like him who know what to do in every situation, just like he does. If he is able to perform on his highest level, there are few others who are able to always make the right move like he does. But he has to feel good and he has to bring it. That he was not able to do so in the recent past, neither at Bayern nor the national team, is probably for many different reasons. Maybe it was trust, there were a lot of speculations, but I think Dortmund knows best how to treat him."
Michael Ballack on Mario Gotze's return to Borussia Dortmund in an interview with Omnisport

"Drogba, Anelka, Brazilian Ronaldo, Adriano at his peak at Inter was unbelievable. The step overs from Brazilian Ronaldo, every now and then I'll do a step over real quick and have a shot. Anelka, his off-the-ball runs, I love Thierry Henry as well, for me those two had the best off-the-ball runs in behind I've ever seen. Drogba's leadership, mentality and his big goals, his big, big goals, and Adriano's power on the pitch. I've never seen something like that, it's very sad that he ended like he did but for me, at his peak, he took the striker's dimension to another level."
Belgium and Everton forward Romelu Lukaku tells FourFourTwo about his football heroes

"I have been very fortunate to play at major tournaments for Ireland over the years and I will cherish all of those memories but one in particular stands out - the 2002 World Cup and scoring the late goal in Ibaraki, Japan against Oliver Kahn. The atmosphere, the adrenaline & the buzz from the fans that night is something I will always remember."
Republic of Ireland's leading goalscorer and captain Robbie Keane announced his retirement from international football

"It was an honour to be captain, but from today I stop being captain. I will send a message to [senior coach] Tite that, from now, he can look for another captain. I do not like to put one title above the other - every competition I contest and win is important. Of course, it had great importance to Brazil and thank God we did it - after a lot of struggling, work and concentration."
Neymar announces to SporTV that he's stepping down as Brazil captain following the country's Rio 2016 triumph

"Neymar told me he didn't want to be captain, and I spoke with him and told him to enjoy this time with his family [winning the Olympic gold medal]. Later, we will have time to think about that. Leadership has a technical aspect and Neymar gives technical leadership and he communicates like a leader. He leads by example. There are a number of factors that need to be considered for leadership so I don't want to get into the details. I am not going to give a definitive answer as to who will be captain. My inclination is that it could be Miranda or Daniel Alves, or even Neymar, as he was before."
Brazil coach Tite declines to exclude Neymar from the captaincy candidates for his squad in a news conference

"I am convinced, like many of my peers, that we can make history as a club if we get the best player in the world in a Newell's shirt. I think we're going to get the pleasure of Messi wearing the shirt. Imagine a game with Messi in the Coloso [Estadio Marcelo Bielsa], with the press around the world. The sponsors who would come... that would make a difference economically, apart from the sentimental value, and could make a big difference to clean up the debts."
Newell’s Old Boys Vice President Cristian D’Amico tells Goal.com that he's confident Messi will return to the club