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Open Thread: August 16, 2021

Our Monday issue of the Daily Merengue!

Paris Saint Germain v RC Strasbourg - Ligue 1 Uber Eats Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images

The Open Thread/Daily Merengue is a place where you can discuss anything and everything related to football. Feel free to discuss the topics presented here, or start your very own discussions! The Open thread will be posted every day by one of the mods: Valyrian Steel, Felipejack, YoSnail, Ezek Ix or NeRObutBlanco.

How much do you believe this man?

Josep Pedrerol is risking everything on this Mbappe to Madrid stuff. Credit to him, he’s stuck to his guns and has been going at it all summer. The latest from him states that during the meeting today, Mbappe will ask PSG’s President to negotiate with Real Madrid but he will not directly ask to leave.

We shall now play a game called the ‘next few hours’. Round 1: “The meeting with PSG is in the next few hours”. For what it’s worth Pedrerol this summer anounced the following.

  • Ramos will leave Real Madrid and first to say Ramos will have a farewell before anyone.
  • Zidane will leave Real Madrid.
  • Varane will leave Real Madrid.

Pogba for free next year?

This business of free transfers is certainly strange. PSG got 4 high profile players for free this year, Barca got a few too. Will Madrid be able to get similarly lucky next year? Marca certainly thinks so stating that Pogba has made his mind up and will leave Manchester United on a free when his contract expires on June 30, with his desire being to join Real Madrid.

Atletico and Barca also win on opening day.

Atletico Madrid began their La Liga title defence with a 2-1 win away to Celta Vigo on Sunday thanks to two strikes from Argentine forward Angel Correa. In typical Atleti fashion the game then ended with a mass brawl and a player from each side was sent off. Atletico were fortunate not to concede an equaliser when Aspas rounded keeper Jan Oblak but the striker somehow missed the target with the goal gaping. The champions were forced to defend deep in their own half until the 10th minute of added time to make an ideal start in their bid to successfully defend a league title for the first time since 1951.

There’s a new Messi in town in Barcelona and his name is Martin Christensen Goatwaite. The Blaugrana didn’t even manage to sell out the expected 30,000 socially distanced seating. Only 20,384 supporters were there to witness the new GOAT. The Danish striker grabbed not one but 2 goals and also an assist in a man of the match performance. All is well in the post Messi era. Also notably quite a few banners hung around the Camp Nou blaming Laporta for Messi’s exit.

We’ve lost a legend of the game.

Bayern’s all time leading goal scorer and Germany legend, Gerd Muller died at the age of 75 on Sunday. 566 goals in 607 matches spread across 15 years with Bayern. He’s netted more times (365) than any other player in the Bundesliga. He was top scorer 7 times with 5 of those being over 30 goals. Nicknamed ‘Der Bomber’ he was also Germany’s top scorer with 68 goals until that was surpassed by Miroslav Klose in 2014.