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Your top 10 stories of 2019: Klopp calls out LFC fans; Messi demands Barca sales; Jose happy with Pogba backlash

As we close out 2019, Liverpool enter the New Year European and World champions, while Barcelona captain Lionel Messi is our Ballon d'Or. And such achievements are reflected in what you made popular on Tribalfootball.com over the past 12 months...

Liverpool and Messi have generated the greatest interest from you this past year - though there have also been some surprises, including one story regarding how Carlo Ancelotti would wind-up Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich. Oh, and of course, the inevitable speculation around Paul Pogba and Manchester United.

As we say farewell to 2019 and welcome 2020, here's the ten most popular stories for the past year according to Tribalfootball.com's readers:


10) Zidane angry with Real Madrid president Perez refusing to pay Mane price

Where would we be without Eduardo Inda? The chief football and political pundit from Okdiario was all over the late season speculation regarding Sadio Mane and Real Madrid. Indeed, this story didn't just begin and end there. Inda lifting the lid on the broken promises made by Real president Florentino Perez to Zizou when sending out his SOS after Santiago Solari's removal.

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9) RESPECT: Arsenal accept nominal Real Sociedad offer for Monreal

Would Unai Emery still be in a job if Nacho Monreal remained an Arsenal player? This story really did appeal to Gooners as the board showed a little seen side of themselves. Rather than insist on a massive fee for the veteran defender, Arsenal allowed Monreal to leave for Real Sociedad for chump change out of respect to his service to the club - a fee which is now being paid over several staggered installments.

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8) Liverpool boss Klopp warns fans: Keep doing it and I'll lose respect for you

Any surprise that Jurgen Klopp calling out his own would generate a bit of interest? Fed-up with the way the Anfield support continued to barrack his captain last season, Klopp went public with his complaints. Of course, today there's a debate about Jordan Henderson being Liverpool's Player of the Decade. But that wasn't the case last season - even going into the Champions League final. And Klopp made his feelings known.

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7) Leeds boss Bielsa delivers huge rant on Arsenal loanee Nketiah: He only thinks about himself!

To be fair, Eddie Nketiah is one of the most popular players amongst Tribalfootball.com readers. Even more so for Arsenal fans. So when Marcelo Bielsa chooses to go public with criticism of the young on-loan striker, there's always going to be a backlash.

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6) Abramovich sets his price to sell Chelsea

The future of Chelsea is always going to generate interest. And more so when there's actual credible takeover talk. Of course, Sir Jim Ratcliffe has confirmed he made enquiries after Chelsea and Roman Abramovich's willingness to sell. While the approach didn't lead anywhere, it was leaked that a price was set by Abramovich in the event an interested party out there had the spending power to bring him to the table.

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5) Real Madrid ready as 'upset' Salah ponders Liverpool transfer demand

Remember this one? The Madrid press were full of it. A blazing row between Mohamed Salah and Klopp had the Egyptian ready to slap in a transfer request last season, only to be talked out of it by Liverpool directors. But in Madrid over the summer they were convinced - Salah would demand a move and Liverpool would be prepared to sell.

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4) REVEALED: Pogba put in personal transfer call to Juventus

Of course Paul Pogba and his antics are going to create buzz. And among the work devoted to covering his on-off, will he/won't he, move to Real Madrid, one story regarding the Manchester United star and Juventus sparked huge interest. This report broke in February, with Pogba making contact with Juve two months into Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's arrival after Jose Mourinho's sacking.

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3) Mourinho pleased to see public turn on Man Utd midfielder Pogba

Another one about Pogba. But inevitably, it just had to also involve Jose Mourinho. The claim here is that Jose was happy seeing the media and United support turning on Pogba as he angled for a move away from Old Trafford. And to be fair to Jose, opinion remains split on United's No6 eleven months since this story broke.

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2) REVEALED: Abramovich texted Ancelotti question marks after Chelsea losses

A surprise inclusion in this year's top ten is this one around new Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti. Just a quick, little revelation from a local Italian journalist, but it spoke volumes as to why the relationship between Ancelotti and Abramovich broke down. Sacked a year after leading Chelsea to the Premier League title, it's now clear Ancelotti and Abramovich's texts offer a glimpse into why everything deteriorated so quickly between the pair.

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1) Messi tells Barcelona board to sell three flops - including Coutinho

And the most popular? It just had to be Leo Messi. This story, in the aftermath of Barca's Champions League collapse at Liverpool, highlighted Messi's new influence on the club's transfer policy and frustration with the make-up of the squad at the time. Since this one broke, we've had confirmation that Messi has a say on signings courtesy of a clause in his contract and he has even complained publicly about their failure to bring Neymar back from PSG last summer.

Click here to read the story.


Chris Beattie
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Chris Beattie

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