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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

What's trending: Ajax, Barcelona and Netherlands legend Johan Cruyff dies

Here are the latest stories from Thursday.

NETHERLANDS: Netherlands, Ajax and Barcelona legend Johan Cruyff has died at the age of 68. Cruyff, a three-time Ballon d'Or winner, had been fighting lung cancer and it was announced on Thursday that he had lost his battle. He was part of the Ajax side that won three consecutive European Cups as a player, and as a coach is credited with instigating the philosophy behind Barcelona's current success.

Johan Cruyff (1947-2016): The football world reacts to his death

- VIDEO: Jordi Cruyff's legacy is still relevant today

SUNDERLAND: Former England footballer Adam Johnson has been sentenced to six years in prison after he was found guilty of sexual activity with a 15-year-old fan and grooming the teenager.

CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: The Champions League group stage could become a 16-team "Super League" from 2018-19 under a revamp being considered by UEFA.

MAN UNITED United are confident of winning the race for in-demand Feyenoord youngster Tahith Chong, a source close to the Premier League club has told ESPN FC.

Bastian Schweinsteiger has said he can only "accept the situation like it is" after the Manchester United midfielder suffered a partial tear to the medial collateral ligament in his knee in Germany training on Tuesday.

- Manchester United could be hit with another UEFA charge after the governing body announced it was investigating reports of illicit chanting in their Europa League clash against Liverpool.

VIDEO: Craig Burley says Man United not Aubameyang's best bet

MAN CITY: Eliaquim Mangala is expected to be sold this summer as incoming boss Pep Guardiola looks to revamp the club's defence, a source has told ESPN FC.

- Sergio Aguero says he will finish his career at former club Independiente after paying for the Argentine club's new training ground.

- Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling might not play again this season after picking up a groin injury in the Manchester derby, a source told ESPN FC.

LIVERPOOL: Jurgen Klopp is hoping his six players involved in the Germany-England friendly escape without injury.

- Christian Benteke has said he can't understand why he is not playing more under Jurgen Klopp in an interview with Sport Magazine in Belgium.

- Danny Ward has stated his ambition to compete with fellow Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet for the No. 1 spot at Anfield as he prepares to make his Wales debut.

VIDEO: Craig Burley thinks Benteke needs to show Klopp he belongs

JUVENTUS: Paul Pogba has informed Juventus that he intends to stay with the club following this season, according to the team's director general Giuseppe Marotta.

- Alvaro Morata, who has been linked with Arsenal and a return to Real Madrid this summer, says that playing in the Premier League appeals to him and that it would be better suited for a striker like him. He said: "I like it a lot because of the characteristics of its football and it's more attractive for a striker, it's not as tactical as Italian football. I like it."

INTER MILAN: Manager Roberto Mancini is not in the frame to succeed Arsene Wenger at Arsenal, according to the club's vice-president Javier Zanetti.

CHELSEA: Juventus' general manager Beppe Marotta says he is honoured that Chelsea are being linked with bids for his club's players, but says there is no reason why they have to sell anybody this summer. With former Juve coach Antonio Conte expected to take over at the Blues in the summer, it has been suggested he may try to raid his former club. He would receive nothing more than a polite "no," however.

ENGLAND: Marcus Rashford will not be fast-tracked into the England squad, according to national under-21 manager Gareth Southgate.

- With Joe Hart injured, his fellow goalkeepers Jack Butland and Fraser Forster are both hoping to be given a chance to impress in upcoming friendies.

- Wales manager Chris Coleman says he knows exactly how Euro 2016 rivals England will play in France. He said: "If England were going to change formation drastically it is something I would study, but I don't see them doing that."

BELGIUM: The Belgian FA has announced that next week's friendly against Portugal will now take place in the Portuguese city of Leiria following the deadly explosions in Brussels. A statement on the Belgian FA (KBVB)'s official website read: "The Board of Directors of the Belgian FA has, in agreement with the national coach and coaching staff, decided to accept the proposal of the Portuguese Football Federation to play this match in Leiria, on the same day and at the same time, Tuesday, March 29 at 20:45 (Belgian time)."

PSG: Argentina head coach Gerardo Martino has criticised Paris Saint-Germain for not resting Angel Di Maria ahead of World Cup qualifiers against Chile and Bolivia. "I'm angry with PSG who didn't respond in the same way as us when a player, as was with the case with Di Maria, should be kept in reserve," RMC quoted Martino as saying.

ITALY: Antonio Conte says he has no regrets about his decision to step down as Italy coach and believes that he has handled his impending exit well. "In retrospect I think I behaved in the right way," Conte told a news conference.

- VIDEO: Conte says Euro 2016 squad places still up for grabs

- VIDEO: Del Bosque believes Spain and Italy are not far apart

ARGENTINA: Paulo Dybala has been withdrawn from the Argentina squad ahead their upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Chile and Bolivia because of a muscular problem. "Dybala's withdrawal was not unexpected," Argentina head coach Gerardo Martino told reporters.

BRAZIL: Brazil legend Ronaldo says forcing Neymar to decide whether to compete in the Copa America or Olympics this summer is "cowardly."

NIGERIA: Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel has been appointed Nigeria captain by coach Samson Siasia. Mikel, 28, replaces CSKA Moscow winger Ahmed Musa as skipper.

GERMANY: Coach Joachim Low has promised Mario Gotze a place in the Germany squad for Euro 2016 despite his current struggles with Bayern Munich. Gotze, 23, has played only 54 minutes for Bayern since recovering from a groin injury in mid-February and has been linked with a summer exit from the club he joined in 2013.

- VIDEO: Raphael Honigstein says it's unlikely that Mario Gotze returns to Dortmund

BARCELONA: Luis Suarez will face Barcelona teammate Neymar when Brazil host Uruguay in Friday's CONMEBOL World Cup qualifier, with a friendly bet on the line -- a burger.

EURO 2016: UEFA cannot rule out the prospect that games at this summer's European Championship could be played behind closed doors if there are sufficient concerns over terrorism, according to its executive committee vice-president Giancarlo Abete.

- VIDEO: Matches behind closed doors "unthinkable"

ARSENAL: Arsenal have offered rising star Alex Iwobi an improved deal as reward for his breakthrough into the first-team, a source has told ESPN FC.

LEICESTER: Jamie Vardy admits he doesn't "really leave the house" much and that life has not changed like people might expect in light of his rise to prominence in the Premier League and his recent call-ups to the England squad.

VIDEO: Foxes focused on England duty

REAL MADRID: Brazil international Marcelo is hoping to extend his contract, which expires in 2020, having only signed a new deal last summer. "One of my aims is to continue here, to renew my contract and stay as many years as possible," Marcelo said, in quotes reported by Marca.

WERDER BREMEN: Werder Bremen defender Papy Djilobodji -- who is on loan from Chelsea -- has been banned for two Bundesliga matches and fined for making a throat-slitting gesture during a match.




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