The Week in Quotes

“He was my drive, so he was my motivation because when I was young he was playing football professionally and I was always dreaming to go with him to the training ground. It was my dream to continue his work and to also be a football player. He was 33 years old, I was seven years old at the time so, yes, it is a pity but that’s life. The life continues and I hope he is proud looking at me from the sky so I try to do everything to make him proud.” New Manchester United signing Henrikh Mkhitaryan talked about the premature death of his father, Hamlet, while on tour of China PR with the club

"My brother Ronaldo dropped by the gym today! He is an animal. Thank you Cristiano, much respect! I will see you for that Forbes number 1 spot next year." Portugal and Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo visited UFC fighter Conor McGregorin Las Vegas

England and Tottenham Hotspur forward Harry Kane shared news that he and his wife, Kate, are expecting their first child

“The couple said he was really nice and friendly, and more than happy to have photos taken with them, which made their day with them being such big Reds fans. It was the icing on the cake.” Photographer Adam Johns told The Liverpool Echo that Liverpool forward Mario Balotelli took time out of his busy schedule to pose for wedding photographs with newlyweds who are Liverpool supporters

"I feel free and I am fully motivated. Carlo Ancelotti is a gift for the club. Under Ancelotti, I finally feel like I'm trusted again. He's an awesome coach and I need people like him or Jupp Heynckes and Ottmar Hitzfeld. I need this trust in me, to play off my strengths. It all depends on things like trust, respect and proximity. Then I cannot only give 100 per cent - I can give 150 per cent. With Ancelotti we can reach something great and I'm really looking forward to the next season." *Franck Ribery praising Carlo Ancelotti as a gift for Bayern Munich in the German sports magazine Kicker*

“Footballers today are a bit like nomads. They follow money and not their hearts. Maybe that is the difference between me and all the others. There are not many sportsmen who follow their hearts. If I had only thought about money I would have left Roma ten years ago. For me it’s about passion, not about money. I have always loved these colours and always wanted to put on this shirt. Fans go to the stadium to have fun and see a player who is always on the same team – they expect not to be betrayed.” *Francesco Totti slams modern footballers in an interview with Gazzetta dello Sport*

"When it comes to Messi, we are talking about a player I believe is still the best in the world. He really is on a different level to other players. But Hazard is a very, very good player, you can see his technique is excellent and he has shown everything at Chelsea. He is still young, so he is going to continue improving to one day be among the very best in the world. It's always going to be difficult to compete with a player of Lionel’s ability, but Eden has all the qualities to do exactly that. He has that ability and talent to stand out from the crowd, to make the difference and be decisive. When you see him produce moments of magic, it is easy to draw comparisons with Messi.” *Pedro, talking about Chelsea team-mate Eden Hazard, in a discussion with Standard Sport*

“The Ballon d’Or is out of my hands but I’ll admit that I’m in a good position given that I won the UCL & European Championships. This season has been the best of my career, I have won two major titles with my club and country so it was something unique… Individual awards are always won without expectations, they’re not everything. I’m not obsessed about winning the Ballon d’Or.” *Cristiano Ronaldo talks about his chances of winning another FIFA Ballon d’Or with Marca*

“On the field, outside the field, every detail counts. For example, you often hear managers say being healthy is really important. With him, if your weight is too high, you’re not training with the team. That is the first thing and you can hear it a lot, but for my part it’s the first time any manager has really done it. So we have a few players who are not training with the team yet. He cut out some juice and pizza and all the heavy food is not allowed.” *Gael Clichy talks to the Daily Mail about new Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola’s approach to fitness and dieting during his team’s pre-season tour to China PR*

“My room was next to Henry's, so we got together and played Pro Evolution Soccer. We were playing on the same team for the World Cup. It was 1 and we lost in the semi-finals. I told him, 'OK Thierry, I'm tired. I am going to sleep.' He grabbed me, threw me down on the bed and told me, 'I will not relieve you until we have won this Cup.' I said, 'It's a freakin' video game! Let me go! I want to go to sleep!' He said, 'No! I will not let you go. We have to win this Cup!' We stood in the bedroom until 5 a.m., until we finally won the Cup – and when we won the Cup, he was so happy. And to be quite honest – I was happy too." Former New York Red Bull Peguy Luyindula shares a memory of team-mate Thierry Henry with

“We have great players but will we deny we are dependent on Messi? Of course we depend . I'm not ashamed of playing for him or for the fact that he is the man. Messi is the best in the world, I want to depend on him." *Neymar shares his thoughts on his Barcelona team-mate at a press conference ahead of the Men’s Olympic Football Tournament*

"If I was a player who scored 50 goals a year, I'd be worth €80 million and wouldn't be at Roma! I don't understand the constantly changing opinions . One day you're a phenomena, the next you're nothing. You are crazy about Roma here, but it's not an easy place to play. You shouldn't think our lives are easy. It's hard to fulfil our ambitions. We work for them at the cost of serious sacrifice and enormous stress. People talk about the comfort of wealth. But you don't consider the effort we put in to reach this level." Roma striker Edin Dzeko in an interview with Corriere Dello Sport

"I heard Wenger shouting in French: 'Kim, do you take penalties?' 'Yeah, I’d be glad to take one.' 'Good. You’re second.' I decide early where to shoot it. When I walk alone to the spot, in a stadium with three times as many spectators as there are inhabitants of my hometown, Sandviken, I must suppress my smile. It’s a long way to walk across the pitch. I’m relaxed – perhaps happy." *Kim Kallstromdescribing to Sverigesradio what was going through his mind before taking his spot-kick in the 2014 English FA Cup semi-finals*

"For Celtic they have much more important games than this coming up with the Champions League qualifiers, but this can help them prepare. We have had some games against Celtic that I will always remember, and they are a big club, with big fans, and I would like to see them qualify this year - it is where they belong." *Lionel Messi tells Daily Record Sport how he feels about Celtic*