first_imgAuthorities have confirmed the death of a man injured by an explosion and fire at his northeast Nebraska home.The Thurston County Sheriff’s Office said Tuesday that 88-year-old Tony Pycha died Friday at an Omaha hospital.Pycha was found in the wreckage of his home south of Winnebago on December 19th.The Sheriff’s Office and fire investigators say a malfunctioning propane heater caused the blast and resulting fire.Photo courtesy KMEGlast_img



Brandon Weeden Talks Deion Sanders

first_imgPhoto Attribution: Icon SMIWe all know Weeden is a great quote, right? Among the variables and ups and downs of college athletics that’s one thing we can pretty much bank on.And he didn’t disappoint in an interview with Gina Mizell over the weekend. Here are some of the gems, things that might not be as funny if Weeden wasn’t the one saying them but are hilarious because he did.On the cone drills and broad jumps he has to do at the combine:It’s the final time we’ll probably ever have to do it, but it’s kind of part of the process.Basically: “I throw a football harder and tighter than anyone in the world that doesn’t currently get paid to do it and you guys are worried about how quickly I can touch a bunch of orange cones??”On throwing at the combine:I’m actually going to decide (Monday) exactly what I’m going to do. It may change, but I think as of right now, I’m leaning toward throwing. But my agent’s coming in, a couple other people (to help me decide). A lot of guys aren’t throwing, for whatever reason. I don’t know why that is. They always use the Deion Sanders comparison — he came in, ran a 4.2 (in the 40-yard dash), jumped back in his car and left. That was his strength. I think my strength is throwing the football. I’d love to throw. I’ve just got to do what’s best for me.First of all, I got a hundy saying he’s going to throw. Second, one of my favorite things about Weeden is that it’s as if he doesn’t understand this game that players and agents and the people paying both of them play. And that’s all the next two months are really, a game. He’s old school though, he’ll throw in the cold (Bedlam), in the wind (Tech), in the heat (Texas)…wherever. Just give him a football and let it ride.Also, I’ve heard that Deion story elsewhere before. I’m pretty sure it’s true and it’s definitely all-time.On where he’ll get drafted:You look back at my track record at Oklahoma State, we won some big games against some really good football teams. You can throw the other quarterbacks that are in there, we were able to beat their teams, respectively.Translation: “screw Griffin.”On what he’s going to do after the draft:I’ll probably work out at Oklahoma State if they’ll let me.Haha…yeah. If they’ll let DMase shoot Js in Gallagher-Iba too.On last year:To say it was amazing is not doing it justice. It was a special time. It was one of those things that hopefully it put Oklahoma State on the map and hopefully the fans and everybody had fun with it. I actually just watched the second half of the Fiesta Bowl for the first time. I can’t really put it into words. It really was unbelievable.I think we’ll look back in 10 years and be even more adamant about how special that ride was.There will be other Big 12 titles and maybe other shots to play for it all, but last year was special in the same way having your first child or falling in love for the first time are special. The blissful innocence is the best part.Source: OklahomanIf you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more

New Zealand take charge of WC tie

first_imgNew Zealand 6 Solomon Islands 1: Wood treble puts All Whites in play-off control Joe Wright 17:56 9/1/17 chris wood - cropped Getty Images Chris Wood scored a hat-trick as New Zealand beat the Solomon Islands 6-1 in their World Cup play-off tie. New Zealand took a step closer to the World Cup with a 6-1 first-leg win over the Solomon Islands in the Oceanic section play-off.Burnley striker Chris Wood scored a hat-trick to help the home side to a commanding victory in Auckland that puts them on the brink of progressing to the intercontinental tie in November.Wood converted from close range following a Ryan Thomas shot to put New Zealand ahead after 18 minutes, before he netted his second of the game nice minutes before half-time with a cool finish over goalkeeper Phil Mango. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! ‘I’m getting better’ – Can Man Utd flop Fred save his Old Trafford career? Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Kosta Barbarouses’ powerful drive made it 3-0 three minutes later, and although Henry Fa’arado pulled one back from the penalty spot, Thomas combined well with Monty Patterson before firing home his side’s fourth.Michael McGlinchey scored a brilliant free-kick before Wood completed his hat-trick in injury time to cap a fine performance for Anthony Hudson’s side, who are now firm favourites to progress ahead of the second leg in Honiara on Tuesday.The winner of the tie will go on to face the fifth-place team from South American’s qualifying section in a final play-off tie to determine who will be at next year’s finals in Russia.#WCQ | FT New Zealand 6-1 Solomon IslandsImpressive All Whites seize initiative in OFC #WorldCup play-off— #WCQ (@FIFAWorldCup) September 1, 2017last_img read more

Shanghai Shenhua coach slams ‘overweight’ Tevez

first_imgCSL ‘He’s not fit to play’ – Shanghai Shenhua coach slams ‘overweight’ Tevez 10:52 13/9/2017 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Carlos Tevez Shanghai CSL Shanghai Shenhua The 33-year-old has only just returned from an injury, but his new coach doesn’t appear ready to welcome him back with open arms. New Shanghai Shenhua manager Wu Jingui has taken aim at “overweight” striker Carlos Tevez, saying the Argentine won’t play for him until he gets in shape. Tevez returned from injury on Sunday after taking time off to rehab in his native Argentina. Following the match, a 2-1 loss to Henan Jianye, Shanghai Shenhua manager Gus Poyet was sacked.  Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘I’m getting better’ – Can Man Utd flop Fred save his Old Trafford career? Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing His replacement pulled no punches when quizzed by reporters about the 33-year-old’s fitness. “I won’t pick him right now. He’s not ready physically. He’s not fit to play,” Wu said of Tevez, who has been constantly linked with a return to Boca Juniors.“He is overweight, along with [Fredy] Guarin. I have to take responsibility for the team and the players as well.”If you are unable do your utmost to play, there’s no point in picking you.”Tevez joined Shanghai from Boca Juniors in December for a reported fee of £71.6 million, but has disappointed during his spell with the club. The former Manchester City and Juventus striker has made 11 appearances and scored just two goals in CSL this year while being plagued by a persistent calf injury.last_img read more

‘Milinkovic-Savic has Madrid & Manchester suitors’

first_imgTransfers City target Milinkovic-Savic has suitors ‘in Madrid, Manchester and Milan’ Ben Spratt 22:28 18/9/2017 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) SergejMilinkovicSavic - cropped Getty Images Transfers Manchester City Premier League Lazio Serie A Agent Mateja Kezman has claimed there are a number of clubs interested in the Serbian midfielder, who could leave Lazio in 2018 Sergej Milinkovic-Savic could be on the move next year as agent Mateja Kezman has revealed there is interest in the Lazio midfielder from clubs “in Madrid, Manchester and Milan”.The 22-year-old – who has been linked with Premier League title hopefuls Manchester City in the recent past – has started the season in fine form as Lazio remain unbeaten in Serie A, thrashing AC Milan last week, and also winning their Europa League group-stage opener against Vitesse.Kezman, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic’s representative, says the player is happy at the Stadio Olimpico, although he would not rule out a potential departure. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘I’m getting better’ – Can Man Utd flop Fred save his Old Trafford career? Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing “There’s been a lot of interest from several clubs, such as those in Madrid, Manchester and Milan,” Kezman told Radio CRC. “But he wants to be happy, to play to keep growing and become one of the best in his role.”It’s difficult to see him away from Lazio, where he has started the season very well, but I can’t rule out him leaving.”Kezman was full of praise, though, for Lazio, where he believes sporting director Igli Tare has created an environment in which Milinkovic-Savic and the club can enjoy success.”If Milinkovic-Savic keeps this up, there will be plenty of contact from different clubs, like there was [in the recent transfer window],” he said.#TrainingSessionPossesso palla per i biancocelesti sul Campo Centrale #FormelloLive— S.S.Lazio (@OfficialSSLazio) September 18, 2017″We’ll see what happens but, for now, what matters is that he’s growing under [Simone] Inzaghi, who’s a great coach.”Right now, Milinkovic-Savic is happy to continue his adventure in Rome with Lazio. Igli Tare is sometimes criticised, but he’s done a great job.”He signed some great players and sold those that weren’t happy at extraordinary prices; now Lazio’s bench is better and they can fight to finish in the top two and win the Europa League.”last_img read more

Barca stay seven clear of Real Madrid

first_imgGirona 0 Barcelona 3: Centurion Suarez seals Catalan derby triumph Matt Dorman Last updated 2 years ago 04:36 24/9/2017 Luis Suarez - cropped Getty Images Luis Suarez celebrated his 100th league match for Barcelona with the final goal in a comfortable victory over regional rivals Girona. Luis Suarez scored on his 100th LaLiga appearance to help see off Girona 3-0 in the first top-flight derby between the two Catalan clubs.A pair of own goals either side of half-time put Ernesto Valverde’s side comfortably ahead before Suarez marked his milestone by wrapping up the three points.Girona skipper Aday Benitez was the victim for the opener when he deflected Jordi Alba’s strike into his own net to gift the league leaders an early advantage. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘I’m getting better’ – Can Man Utd flop Fred save his Old Trafford career? Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing And it was another own goal which doubled Barca’s lead after the interval as Aleix Vidal’s classy cut-back wriggled in off Girona goalkeeper Gorka Iraizoz.Suarez added the gloss with 20 minutes remaining to seal a sixth consecutive league victory, an impressive start they last managed in 2013-14.While far from perfect at the back, Valverde’s men now sit four points clear of second-placed Atletico Madrid.24 – Luis Suárez has scored against 24 of the 25 sides he has faced in La Liga (87 goals). Predatory.— OptaJose (@OptaJose) September 23, 2017The visitors had early joy down the right when Javier Mascherano found Vidal in behind, but the winger’s attempted cross was crucially cut out by Iraizoz.Marc-Andre ter Stegen next produced a superb one-handed save low to his right to deny Douglas, while Suarez’s inability to find a team-mate from a cut-back at the other end cost Barca a certain opener.Valverde’s side did not have to wait long for the breakthrough, though, and it came courtesy of a huge slice of fortune.After Iraizoz kept out Messi’s free-kick, the veteran keeper was left with no chance from the resultant corner as Alba’s speculative volley took a heavy deflection off Benitez on its way into the bottom-left corner.Barca began to take control by the half-hour mark and only an in-form Iraizoz prevented them from doubling their advantage, the 36-year-old quick off his line to smother another chance for Alba.Paulinho and Michael Olunga still found time to exchange wayward headers as an entertaining first half ended with the away side ahead.The lead became 2-0 almost immediately after the resumption when Vidal reached the by-line and attempted to find Suarez, who hurdled the back-heel pass and saw it trickle in via Iraizoz’s legs.4 – Barcelona top scorers in La Liga 2017/18:Lionel Messi 9OWN GOALS 3Update.— OptaJose (@OptaJose) September 23, 2017Girona continued to pose a threat in the air with Douglas heading another opportunity high, while Olunga nodded straight at Ter Stegen just before the hour.But any hint of a comeback was soon extinguished thanks to Suarez. The striker was put clean through by Sergi Roberto and clinically picked out the bottom-left corner to make it 3-0.With their perfect league record still intact, Barca will take plenty of confidence into their midweek Champions League trip to Sporting CP. Key Opta facts:- Luis Suarez has scored against 24 of the 25 sides he has faced in LaLiga (87 goals). – Suarez has is now eighth in the list of all-time Barcelona top scorers in LaLiga surpassing Rivaldo (86 in 157 appearances). – Barcelona were also the last side to benefit from two own goals in the same LaLiga game, which they did on April 2014 versus Villarreal.- Gorka Iraizoz scored his first own goal in LaLiga. read morelast_img read more

UEFA World Cup qualifying as it stands

first_imgWorld Cup Which European teams have qualified for World Cup 2018 in Russia? Oli Platt Last updated 2 years ago 16:00 10/11/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Robert Lewandowski Poland Getty Images World Cup WC Qualification Europe Romania Czech Republic Scotland Turkey North Macedonia Bulgaria Kosovo Croatia Bosnia-Herzegovina Sweden Switzerland Norway Finland Austria Azerbaijan Estonia Spain Kazakhstan Lithuania Belarus Gibraltar Greece Belgium Luxembourg Cyprus Netherlands France Andorra Latvia Hungary Faroe Islands Portugal Montenegro Northern Ireland San Marino Germany Malta England Armenia Denmark Poland Slovenia Slovakia Iceland Albania Liechtenstein Serbia Moldova Italy Israel Wales Ukraine France, Spain and Germany are among the teams to have confirmed their place at next summer’s finals, with just the play-offs left to be contested There are only four World Cup 2018 qualification places left to play for in Europe as group play reached its conclusion on October 10.France and Portugal were the last teams to wrap up top spot in their groups and confirm their place at the finals, joining the likes of Spain, Germany and England.France 11/2 to lift WC Article continues below Editors’ Picks Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. For Italy, Croatia and Switzerland, among others, though, the second-place play-offs loom in November before the draw for the tournament in Russia a month later.Goal has your complete guide to the current qualification picture as we edge nearer to the return of the biggest sporting event on the planet.QUALIFIED TEAMS Team Method Russia Hosts France Group A winner Portugal Group B winner Germany Group C winner Serbia Group D winner Poland Group E winner England Group F winner Spain Group G winner Belgium Group H winner Iceland Group I winner TBC Play-off winner TBC Play-off winner TBC Play-off winner TBC Play-off winner GROUP TABLESThomas Muller GermanyThe 54 countries participating are split into nine groups of six.The teams in each group play each other twice – once at home and once away. The nine first-place teams qualify directly for the World Cup finals.The nine second-place teams are then ranked by points, but with the results of their games against the last-placed team in their group discarded (leaving eight games each).The best eight teams on that basis are drawn at random into four two-legged play-off ties, with the ninth team eliminated. The winners of those ties also qualify for the World Cup finals.Group A: Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 1 France (Q) 10 7 2 1 18 6 +12 23 2 Sweden (PO) 10 6 1 3 26 9 +17 19 3 Netherlands (E) 10 6 1 3 21 12 +9 19 4 Bulgaria (E) 10 4 1 5 14 19 -5 13 5 Luxembourg (E) 10 1 3 6 8 26 -18 6 6 Belarus (E) 10 1 2 7 6 21 -15 5 Group B: Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 1 Portugal (Q) 10 9 0 1 32 4 +28 27 2 Switzerland (PO) 10 9 0 1 23 7 +16 27 3 Hungary (E) 10 4 1 5 14 14 0 13 4 Faroe Islands (E) 10 2 3 5 4 16 -12 9 5 Latvia (E) 10 2 1 7 7 18 -11 7 6 Andorra (E) 10 1 1 8 2 23 -21 4 Group C: Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 1 Germany (Q) 10 10 0 0 43 4 +39 30 2 Northern Ireland (PO) 10 6 1 3 17 6 +11 19 3 Czech Republic (E) 10 4 3 3 17 10 +7 15 4 Norway (E) 10 4 1 5 17 16 +1 13 5 Azerbaijan (E) 10 3 1 6 10 19 -9 10 6 San Marino (E) 10 0 0 10 2 51 -49 0 Group D: Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 1 Serbia (Q) 10 6 3 1 20 10 +10 21 2 Republic of Ireland (PO) 10 5 4 1 12 6 +6 19 3 Wales (E) 10 4 5 1 13 6 +7 17 4 Austria (E) 10 4 3 3 14 12 +2 15 5 Georgia (E) 10 0 5 5 8 14 -6 5 6 Moldova (E) 10 0 2 8 4 23 -19 2 Group E: Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 1 Poland (Q) 10 8 1 1 28 14 +14 25 2 Denmark (PO) 10 6 2 2 20 8 +12 20 3 Montenegro (E) 10 5 1 4 20 12 +8 16 4 Romania (E) 10 3 4 3 12 10 +2 13 5 Armenia (E) 10 2 1 7 10 26 -16 7 6 Kazakhstan (E) 10 0 3 7 6 26 -20 3 Group F: Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 1 England (Q) 10 8 2 0 18 3 +15 26 2 Slovakia 10 6 0 4 17 7 +10 18 3 Scotland (E) 10 5 3 2 17 12 +5 18 4 Slovenia (E) 10 4 3 3 12 7 +5 15 5 Lithuania (E) 10 1 3 6 7 20 -13 7 6 Malta (E) 10 0 1 9 3 25 -22 1 Group G: Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 1 Spain (Q) 10 9 1 0 36 3 +33 28 2 Italy (PO) 10 7 2 1 21 8 +13 23 3 Albania (E) 10 4 1 5 10 13 -3 13 4 Israel (E) 10 4 0 6 10 15 -5 12 5 Macedonia (E) 10 3 2 5 15 15 0 11 6 Liechtenstein (E) 10 0 0 10 1 39 -38 0 Group H: Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 1 Belgium (Q) 10 9 1 0 43 6 +37 28 2 Greece (PO) 10 5 4 1 17 6 +11 19 3 Bosnia & Herzegovina (E) 10 5 2 3 24 13 +11 17 4 Estonia (E) 10 3 2 5 13 19 -6 11 5 Cyprus (E) 10 3 1 6 9 18 -9 10 6 Gibraltar (E) 10 0 0 10 3 47 -44 0 Group I: Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 1 Iceland (Q) 10 7 1 2 16 7 +9 22 2 Croatia (PO) 10 6 2 2 15 4 +11 20 3 Ukraine (E) 10 5 2 3 13 9 +4 17 4 Turkey (E) 10 4 3 3 14 13 +1 15 5 Finland (E) 10 2 3 5 9 13 -4 9 6 Kosovo (E) 10 0 1 8 3 24 -21 1 (Q) = qualified(PO) = qualified at least for play-off(E) = eliminatedBold = final position confirmed SECOND-PLACE RANKINGCristiano Ronaldo PortugalThe nine second-place teams from each group are ranked by points, but with the results of their games against the sixth-placed team in their group discarded.Those points don’t count because there were initially two groups of five teams until Kosovo and Gibraltar were admitted to UEFA. UEFA subsequently decided not to change the rules despite the fact that the groups are now balanced.The best eight teams on that basis will be drawn – based on seeding – into four two-legged, home-and-away play-off ties, with the ninth team eliminated.The seeding will be based on the next update to the FIFA world rankings, which will make Switzerland, Italy, Denmark and Croatia the seeded teams and Sweden, Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and Greece the unseeded teams.The winners of those ties will qualify for the World Cup finals. Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts 1 Switzerland (PO) 8 7 0 1 18 6 +12 21 2 Italy (PO) 8 5 2 1 12 8 +4 17 3 Denmark (PO) 8 4 2 2 13 6 +7 14 4 Croatia (PO) 8 4 2 2 8 4 +4 14 5 Sweden (PO) 8 4 1 3 18 9 +9 13 6 Northern Ireland (PO) 8 4 1 3 10 6 +4 13 7 Greece (PO) 8 3 4 1 9 5 +4 13 8 Republic of Ireland (PO) 8 3 4 1 7 5 +2 13 9 Slovakia (E) 8 4 0 4 11 6 +5 12 (PO) = qualified for play-off(E) = eliminatedBold = final position confirmedWHEN ARE THE PLAY-OFFS?World Cup 2014 play off draw PortugalFIFA has confirmed that the European qualifiers play-off draw will take place on Tuesday, October 17.The draw will be held in Zurich and things kick off at 14:00 CET (13:00 GMT), with the event being streamed live on FIFA’s website as well as their YouTube channel.The eight teams involved in the draw will be split into two pots, with the four highest-ranked teams according to the FIFA world rankings in one pot and the four lowest-ranked teams in another.When will the play-off matches be played?The dates have not yet been confirmed, but FIFA says that the play-offs are expected to take place between November 9 and 14.last_img read more

Drogba plans 2018 retirement date

first_imgDidier Drogba Didier Drogba plans 2018 retirement date Alex Fisher Last updated 1 year ago 01:27 11/15/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) didierdrogba - cropped Getty Images Phoenix Rising Chelsea Premier League The Chelsea legend has set his sights on retirement in 2018 after a second season with Phoenix Rising Didier Drogba seems set to call time on his playing career after the 2018 United Soccer League (USL) season to focus on other projects.Chelsea 9/1 to beat West Brom 3-0The four-time Premier League champion scored nine goals in his first season with Phoenix Rising as they finished fifth in the Western Conference. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player As well as being Phoenix’s star player, the Ivorian is also an owner of the club, and it is his off-field ventures that the 39-year-old wants to concentrate on going forward.”I think next year will be my last season,” he told RMC. “There comes a time when you have to stop.”I need time for my other projects. It’s good to play, but at 39, it holds me back a bit.”After moving to Chelsea in 2004 Drogba established himself as one of the top strikers in world football, his strength and goalscoring prowess setting him apart from his rivals.In nine years at Stamford Bridge – over two spells – the forward scored 164 times for the Blues, including a crucial goal and the winning penalty as they won the Champions League in 2012.Away from the Premier League Drogba also lifted the Super Lig title with Galatasaray in 2013, while he also spent time in China before moving to MLS with Montreal Impact.last_img read more

UCL last 16: All the details ahead of the draw

first_imgUEFA Champions League Champions League last 16: Which teams have qualified & when is the draw? Ryan Kelly Last updated 1 year ago 16:00 12/11/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(24) Neymar, Paris Saint-Germain Getty UEFA Champions League Manchester United Feyenoord Manchester City Monaco Tottenham Hotspur Benfica Chelsea Sporting CP Roma Atlético Madrid Barcelona Juventus Basel Celtic Qarabağ Anderlecht Porto Real Madrid Borussia Dortmund Bayern München Olympiakos Piraeus Beşiktaş PSG Spartak Moskva Maribor RB Leipzig CSKA Moskva Napoli Shakhtar Donetsk Liverpool Sevilla APOEL With Europe’s premier club competition ready for the knockout stage, Goal brings you everything you need to know ahead of the draw The group stage of the 2017-18 Champions League is over and knock-out stage is drawing near.Liverpool, Sevilla, Shakhtar Donetsk and FC Porto were the last four teams to book their place in the next stage as 32 teams were whittled down to 16 for the second-round draw.Dabblebet’s Champions League odds here Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player With the composition of the knockout stage now decided, Goal takes a look at everything you need to know.WHEN IS THE CHAMPIONS LEAGUE LAST-16 DRAW? Champions League drawThe draw for the first round of the Champions League knock-out stage will take place on Monday, December 11 at UEFA’s headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland.It is scheduled to take place at 11:00 GMT (06:00 ET) and fans will be able to follow it via live stream on UEFA’s official website as well as being able to follow the latest news on Goal.How does the Champions League last 16 draw work?The draw for the last 16 of the Champions League will be a seeded draw and the winners of the eight groups will be seeded. The eight group runners-up will be unseeded.Group winners, or seeded teams, will be away for the first-leg matches, which are scheduled for February 13/14 and 20/21, with the second-leg games due to be played on March 6/7 and 13/14.Teams from the same group or national association cannot be drawn against one another, so, for example, Manchester United cannot be drawn against the likes of Manchester City.However, that will change for the quarter-final draw, which will be an open draw.WHICH TEAMS ARE IN THE CHAMPIONS LEAGUE LAST 16? Cristiano Ronaldo Real MadridManchester United, Paris Saint-Germain, Roma and Barcelona will be the seeded teams from Groups A-D, while Liverpool, Manchester City, Besiktas and Tottenham are the seeded teams from Groups E-H.Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, Chelsea and Juventus make for a strong unseeded line-up, and they are joined by Basel, Sevilla, Shakhtar Donetsk and Porto.And with Liverpool having booked their place in the knockout stage as group winners, England has become the first country to have five teams qualify for the last 16 of the Champions League.Champions League last-16 seeding Group Seeded Unseeded A Manchester United Basel B PSG Bayern Munich C Roma Chelsea D Barcelona Juventus E Liverpool Sevilla F Manchester City Shakhtar Donetsk G Besiktas FC Porto H Tottenham Real Madridlast_img read more

Man Utd team news & likely line-up vs Bournemouth

first_imgManchester United Man Utd Team News: Injuries, suspensions and line-up vs AFC Bournemouth Kris Voakes Man Utd Correspondent Last updated 1 year ago 16:16 12/13/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Jose Mourinho Manchester United Getty Images Manchester United Premier League Manchester United v AFC Bournemouth AFC Bournemouth Everything you need to know ahead of the Premier League clash at Old Trafford on Wednesday Jose Mourinho and Manchester United have a lot to prove in the next few weeks following the derby defeat to neighbours City which has seen them fall 11 points off the pace in the Premier League title race.United’s performance on Sunday has attracted plenty of attention for its timidity, and only a string of more expressive displays is likely to salve the wounds of Reds supporters still smarting from the City loss.And with Chelsea having won at Huddersfield Town on Tuesday, United need the three points against Bournemouth on Wednesday to keep some distance between themselves and the third-placed Blues. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player MAN UTD INJURIES Phil Jones returned to United’s 18-man squad for Sunday’s derby but was not called upon, despite Marcos Rojo leaving the field at half-time due to a head injury. The Argentine may well miss out on Wednesday as a result of the knock suffered in his challenge on David Silva, meaning Jones or Victor Lindelof could start in his place.Eric Bailly appeared to be on the verge of a return from a groin injury but has suffered a setback in his recovery and is likely to be out for another six to eight weeks.Zlatan Ibrahimovic returned against City having sat out a couple of fixtures due to complications surrounding his recovery from a serious ACL injury and is likely to again be among the substitutes.Michael Carrick will be given plenty of time to recover following a procedure to deal with an irregular heart rhythm but is not expected to return to play for the time being at least, while there is some hope that Marouane Fellaini might be available again after a knee injury.Eric Bailly Jan Vertonghen Manchester United Tottenham Premier LeagueMAN UTD SUSPENSIONS Paul Pogba serves the second game of a three-match suspension following his sending-off against Arsenal for a bad challenge on Hector Bellerin. United will also be wary of Ander Herrera’s disciplinary record, as a booking against Bournemouth would rule the Spaniard out of Sunday’s trip to West Bromwich Albion and leave Jose Mourinho scrambling for alternatives in midfield. Ashley Young is another who is one yellow card shy of a ban, while the Cherries’ Steve Cook would miss the weekend clash with Liverpool if he is booked at Old Trafford.MAN UTD POTENTIAL STARTING LINE-UPJose Mourinho could make a handful of changes as his team backs up from Sunday’s game just three days on, meaning the likes of Ashley Young and Antonio Valencia will be considered for a rest. That could open the door for Matteo Darmian or Luke Shaw.Juan Mata may well be recalled in the attack, while Henrikh Mkhitaryan has only featured for 20 minutes of the past seven matches in all competitions but could return to the 18-man squad. Mourinho will be hoping that Marouane Fellaini is fit for selection given his lack of options in midfield in Paul Pogba’s absence.Chris Smalling has started 16 straight games at centre-back so could be a candidate for a night off, but with Marcos Rojo potentially missing out with a head injury it may well be a shoot-out between Phil Jones and Victor Lindelof to start alongside Smalling.Man Utd possible XIBOURNEMOUTH TEAM NEWS After a poor start to the season which saw them fall to four straight defeats, Bournemouth have regained their feet enough to start Wednesday’s fixture three points clear of the Premier League drop zone. A run of three wins in four fixtures in October and November have propped up their campaign to this point, but they have yet to beat anybody higher in the table than 12th-placed Huddersfield Town.Eddie Howe has exclusively used a three-man backline against top-six clubs so far this season, but the use of such tactics against Manchester City, Arsenal, Tottenham and Chelsea has resulted in a Cherries defeat every time. If he goes with a similar shape at Old Trafford rather than his usual back four, don’t be surprised to see Jose Mourinho match up with the same formation as has been his trend in 2017.Callum Wilson’s hat-trick against Huddersfield represents his entire Premier League goals account for the season and yet he sits top of his side’s scoring charts, underlining where Bournemouth’s problems have been to this point. However, Bournemouth may feel they owe United a tough outing following last season’s controversial 1-1 draw at the Theatre of Dreams, which led to lengthy suspensions for Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Tyrone Mings.Callum Wilson BournemouthBEST OPTA MATCH FACTS Bournemouth have found the net at least once in each of their four Premier League meetings with Manchester United – making them the side the Red Devils have faced the most in the competition without keeping a clean sheet. Bournemouth are one of four clubs that Jose Mourinho has faced more than once at home in his league managerial career but not beaten (D1 L1), after Burnley (D2), Genoa (D2) and Roma (D2). Manchester United’s 40-game unbeaten run at Old Trafford came to an end in their 1-2 derby defeat to Manchester City on Sunday (now W29 D11 L1) – In fact, Man City are the only side to have defeated Manchester United at home since February 2016, doing so twice. Manchester United haven’t lost successive home matches in all competitions since January 2014 (v Spurs in the Premier League and Swansea in the FA Cup). Jermain Defoe has scored against Manchester United in the Premier League for both Spurs and West Ham United. Only eight players have previously scored against the Red Devils for 3+ clubs in the competition – Les Ferdinand (4 clubs), Darren Bent (4), Chris Sutton (3), Brian Deane (3), Nicolas Anelka (3), Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink (3), Yakubu (3) and James Milner (3). Marcus Rashford has now been involved in 15 goals for Manchester United this season, only Romelu Lukaku has been involved in more (17). However, Rashford has averaged a goal involvement every 93 minutes on average in 2017-18, compared to Lukaku’s ratio of 122 mins per goal involvement. Romelu Lukaku has scored five goals in four Premier League appearances against Bournemouth, including four in his last appearance against them: a 6-3 win for Everton in February 2017. Lukaku has scored just one goal in his last nine Premier League appearances, despite attempting 22 shots in this run – converting just 4.5% of these. TV COVERAGE & KICK-OFF TIME The match at Old Trafford kicks off at 20:00GMT on Wednesday, with no live coverage available in the UK.In the US, watch the Premier League live and on-demand with fuboTV (7-day free trial) Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

‘Blind should leave Man Utd for Barcelona’

first_imgTransfers Blind urged by Van Gaal to quit Man Utd and head for Barcelona Chris Burton Last updated 1 year ago 16:31 12/24/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(4) Daley Blind Manchester United Getty Images Transfers Barcelona Manchester United Primera División Premier League The versatile Dutchman has been linked with a January switch to Catalunya, and a former boss at Old Trafford and Camp Nou says a switch makes sense Daley Blind deserves better than his current treatment at Manchester United and should be looking for a move to Barcelona, says Louis van Gaal.The versatile Dutchman has become a fringe figure at Old Trafford, with Jose Mourinho favouring other options across his back four and midfield.As a result, Blind has been restricted to just one minute of Premier League football since starting the first three games of the season. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player He has featured in the Champions League and Carabao Cup, but Van Gaal believes the 27-year-old should be looking for more minutes amid talk of a possible January switch to Camp Nou.The former United and Barcelona boss said in the Mirror: “Daley Blind is better off going to Barcelona than staying with Man United.Van gaal on blind E“He is not even on the bench for United sometimes. Daley can play in more than one position and at Barcelona he would never be sat in the stands.“I think Daley would fit in better at Barcelona anyway. His level and his style of play is more suited to Spain than England.“He can operate as a central defender who builds up the play. He can be a defensive midfielder or an attacking left-back. Daley can do it all.”Blind joined United from Ajax in the summer of 2014.He has made 137 appearances for the club and is one outing short of 300 at club level.Mourinho, though, has shifted Ashley Young to a left-back role this season, while several other options have been utilised at centre-half and Nemanja Matic drafted in for £40 million to fill a holding midfield berth.last_img read more

Fifa’s World Cup money-grabbing may be running into the sand in Qatar

first_imgExciting territory for the Middle East ingenues at Fifa, as the Qatar World Cup is elevated to the status of geopolitical bargaining chip. I know! It’ll be hard to know whether to qualify for it or sign a triple entente in the hope it’ll see us through the group stage.But first, a recap. Back in June, several countries in the region – including Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt – instituted a blockade of Qatar, severing diplomatic relations and cutting off trade routes and so on. This, they said, was a response to the country’s support for terrorism and closeness to Iran. Among their various demands was that Qatar shut down the Doha‑based al-Jazeera and align itself far more tightly with other Gulf countries. Eye‑catchingly, Dubai’s high-profile security chief has now upped the stakes and claimed the blockade would end if Qatar gave up the World Cup. “If the World Cup leaves Qatar,” reasoned Lt Gen Dhahi Khalfan last Sunday, “Qatar’s crisis will be over … because the crisis is created to get away from it.”Clarifying his comments the next day, he explained: “I said Qatar is faking a crisis and claims it’s besieged so it could get away from the burdens of building expensive sports facilities for the World Cup. That’s why Qatar isn’t ready and can’t host the next World Cup.” He went on to suggest that “the cost is bigger than what the Hamadein [the ruling family] have planned”. Twitter Share on Messenger Share on LinkedIn Read more Sportblog Middle East and North Africa Qatar rejects allegations it supports terrorism – video Qatar Share on Pinterest Pinterest World Cup 2022 Topics World Cup Share via Email On the one hand, let’s not get carried away with this somewhat boggling analysis. It seems unlikely that Qatar is confecting a regional crisis solely to get out of honouring its commitment to host the World Cup – though the mere fact it could be suggested shows the Wag-the-Dog nature of the modern sporting mega-event. These things are not quite so expensive that it’s cheaper to have a war to get out of having to deliver them. But, you know … it’s close. Furthermore, I love how even the richest people on earth still apparently end up spending way more than they’re happy with on events of this type. Such is the demented mission creep of the mega-event that even Croesus would have ended up screaming: “I AM NOT MADE OF MONEY,” at the chairman of the Lydian organising committee trying to get him to sign off another bazillion of his newfangled coins for infrastructure security.On the other hand … the Middle East is starting to look like the place where Fifa might finally find itself out of its depth. With past World Cup hosts, the process for our Zurich‑based heroes has always been simple. Award World Cup to a country while denying inducements from immoral or innumerate local officials; get said country to spend insane amounts of money; get country to spend more money; get country to max out all lines of credit; insist country overrides its constitution and aspects of its rights legislation for your time in situ; leave with all the money and without paying any tax; respond with a hand wave or not at all when people talk about white elephant stadiums and infrastructure. Repeat.Qatar, on the other hand, is proving slightly formula-resistant. Not only does it have the blockade hampering construction work, but last week also saw the leak to the BBC of a risk report on the tournament. Compiled by management consultants, it judged there is “an increasing political risk that Qatar may not host the World Cup in 2022”. As the report puts it: “Western diplomats have privately stated they do not know whether or not the tournament will take place as planned.” According to Qatar 2022’s Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, the authors of this report have links to the countries blockading Qatar. For this reason, they say, it should be discounted. Alternatively, you may judge it should be paid particular attention to, as evidence that the blockade countries really mean to cause as much trouble as they can in relation to the World Cup. Thousands of Qatar World Cup workers ‘subjected to life-threatening heat’ Facebook Clearly some sort of PR pushback is necessary, and on Monday the New York Times ran an interview with the Qatar organising committee chief, Hassan al-Thawadai, conducted before the report came to light. Whether sight of it would have tempered some of his answers is unclear but without it there was much for students of sporting platitude and euphemism to enjoy. Did the blockade complicate the idea of making it a regional event, wondered the paper? “No,” came the amusing reply. “We’ve always taken the simple position that sports is elevated from conflict.” That’s certainly a simple position – and time may show it to be a simplistic one. Still, you have to admire him for doubling down, declaring: “We’ve always focused on it being a regional World Cup.” Just to clarify: is the region in question currently the one literally blockading you? “This is a World Cup beyond Qatar,” Thawadai insisted firmly. “It’s a cultural experience.”Well. It feels very regionist to describe the current diplomatic chicanery over a football tournament as cultural, but perhaps Thawadai meant something else. Indeed, despite the frequency with which the World Cup is used as a political tool – perhaps this time more than ever – he is falling back on the cliche that it will be a peacemaker and healer. It is, he insists, “an opportunity to transform our region to a sustainable and stable future”. That idea may well run up against the limits of its credibility in Qatar. The official slogan for Qatar’s 2022 World Cup bid was: “Expect amazing.” The unofficial slogan for its delivery period is: “How’s that working out for ya?” comment Share on Facebook Share on WhatsApp Share on Twitter Play VideoAdvertisementPlayCurrent Time 0:00/Duration Time 0:00Loaded: 0%Progress: 0%FullscreenMuteThis is a modal window. Reuse this contentlast_img read more

Larry Nassar’s ‘death warrant’: sexual abuser jailed for up to 175 years

first_img 1997 Support The Guardian 1996 Reuse this content Share on Facebook ‘Larry Nassar, I hate you’: abuse victims in their own words – video Thank you for your feedback. Gymnastics Play Video Victim impact statements against Larry Nassar: ‘I thought I was going to die’ 2:41 … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Play Video “For the past week, survivors came forward to courageously face a perpetrator of evil and to share their painful stories,” Raisman wrote on Twitter. “Many of them, myself included, claim the USOC is also at fault. Was the USOC there to ‘focus on supporting the brave survivors’? No. Did they issue any statement then? Crickets …” ‘Little girls don’t stay little forever’: abuse victims confront Larry Nassar – video 1992 Share on Twitter The former USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar has been sentenced to between 40 and 175 years in prison for abusing athletes in his care.Judge Rosemarie Aquilina reached her decision after a sentence hearing that heard from dozens of women and girls, including the Olympic champions Aly Raisman and McKayla Maroney. Hide Eighteen women file a lawsuit against Nassar, USA Gymnastics, MSU and Twistars Gymnastics Club. The lawsuit alleges Nassar assaulted the women over a period of 20 years and the institutions named in the suit failed to prevent his behaviour.  Nassar pleads guilty to seven charges of criminal sexual abuse. He later pleads guilty to three further accounts as part of a plea agreement.  According to a lawsuit, Nassar commits his first recorded assault, abusing a 12-year-old girl in the guise of medical research. A year later Nassar gains his medical degree from Michigan State University, where he will commit many of his assaults. US sports Timeline Larry Nassar abuse case The first recorded complaints about Nassar are received. According to a 2017 lawsuit, youth gymnastics coach John Geddert fails to investigate the allegations.  Nassar had already admitted in November to molesting seven girls in his care under the guise of treatment. But a total of 156 girls and women came forward to speak at the seven-day sentencing hearing, saying they had also suffered abuse at his hands, with two dozen more submitting private letters to the court.Late on Wednesday, the president of Michigan State University, where Nassar also treated athletes, said she was tendering her resignation. Lou Anna Simon had faced a barrage of criticism for not doing enough to halt the abuse by the doctor, including a scathing front-page editorial by the independent student newspaper that cast “Simon, her appointees and cheerleaders” as “enablers”. “As tragedies are politicized, blame is inevitable. As president, it is only natural that I am the focus of this anger,” Simon said in her resignation letter.Judge Aquilina told Nassar Wednesday: “It is my honor to sentence you because, sir, you do not deserve to walk outside of a prison ever again. Anywhere you walk, destruction would occur to those most vulnerable.”She added: “I just signed your death warrant.” 1:42center_img Topics Share on LinkedIn Share on WhatsApp Show January 2017 January 2018 Share via Email Was this helpful? 1:58 Since you’re here… Nassar becomes national medical coordinator for USA Gymnastics before the Atlanta Olympics. He will go on to treat athletes at the next five Olympics and abuse many of them. Olympic champions Simone Biles, Aly Raisman, Gabby Douglas and McKayla Maroney are among those who said they were abused by Nassar under the guise of medical treatment.  Nassar is given a jail term of up to 175 years for sexually abusing athletes in his care. In total, 156 women make impact statement at his sentence hearing, saying he abused them. Handing down the sentence, Judge Rosemarie Aquilina says: “I just signed your death warrant”. ‘I’m a survivor’: US Olympian confronts abuser Larry Nassar in court – video Share on Pinterest Read more Michigan news Claims against Nassar go public for the first time after the Indianapolis Star publishes an investigation into sexual abuse at USA Gymnastics. Rachael Denhollander files a criminal complaint against Nassar, saying she was first abused by him when she was 15. Aquilina said the sentence reflected not only the seven counts to which Nassar pleaded guilty, but also the survivors who came forward during the sentencing hearing “because the depth of all of your crimes have cut into the core of this community”.“The breadth and ripple of this defendant’s abuse and destruction is infinite,” the prosecuting attorney Angela Povilaitis said in her closing remarks. “Nassar used his prestige to gain [his victims’] trust and to exploit them, leaving many of them emotionally shattered by a man they not only trusted but loved. In competitive gymnastics, he found the perfect place for his master manipulation.”The disgraced physician gave a brief statement before Aquilina handed down the sentence, acknowledging the “pain, trauma and emotional destruction” experienced by his victims.“Your words these past several days have had a significant emotional effect on myself and have shaken me to my core,” he said. “I will carry your words with me for the rest of my days.”“Sir, I hope that’s true,” the judge said after Nassar concluded. Aquilina read portions of the six-page, single-spaced letter Nassar wrote to the judge last week in which he said it was too difficult for him to listen to the victim impact statements, citing it as proof that “you have still not owned what you did”.“Would you like to withdraw your plea?” the judge asked.“No, your honor,” he said.“Because you’re guilty, aren’t you, sir?”“I accept my plea.”Rachael Denhollander, one of three survivors to speak on Wednesday, was “absolutely” satisfied with the sentence on a day she wasn’t sure would ever come when she became the first of Nassar’s victims to come forward publicly in September 2016.“The number of sexual assault victims Larry had was plain to me,” she said. “Whether or not anyone would feel safe to come forward, that was the wild card.”After Aquilina delivered the sentence, the US Olympic Committee called on the directors of USA Gymnastics to resign. “The purpose of this message is to tell all of Nassar’s victims and survivors, directly, how incredibly sorry we are,” the USOC chief executive, Scott Blackmun, wrote in an open letter. “We have said it in other contexts, but we have not been direct enough with you … The Olympic family is among those that have failed you.”Those who confronted Nassar in the Michigan courtroom included household names such as Raisman and Maroney but most of those he abused never reached the elite level. The first witness in court when the hearing started last week was Kyle Stephens, who told the court she was abused by Nassar, a family friend, between the ages of six and 12. “Perhaps you have figured it out by now, but little girls don’t stay little for ever,” Stephens said. “They grow into strong women that destroy your world.”Simone Biles, one of the stars of the Rio Olympics, said she had also been abused by the 54-year-old although she chose not to appear in court. “Most of you know me as a happy, giggly, and energetic girl,” the four-times Olympic gold medalist wrote on Twitter last week. “But lately I’ve felt a bit broken and the more I try to shut off the voice in my head the louder it screams. I am not afraid to tell my story anymore.”Michigan State University, USA Gymnastics and the USOC have all been named as co-defendants in civil suits that appear headed to trial, with allegations that officials knew about Nassar’s abuse. One of the most vocal critics of the organisations that allegedly enabled Nassar has been Raisman. 1986 Larry Nassar joins USA Gymnastics as a trainer August 2016 Share on Messenger November 2017 Play Video “Adult after adult protected you,” Raisman, who won gold medals at the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, said when she appeared in court last week. “How do you sleep at night? You are the person they had ‘take the lead on athlete care’.” “I will not rest until every last trace of the influence you had on this sport has been destroyed like the cancer it is.”Raisman also told ESPN that USA Gymnastics “told [her] to be quiet” when she first told the organisation she had been abused by Nassar. On Monday, three USA Gymnastics board members resigned over the scandal. Raisman took the USOC to task for taking credit for the resignations.last_img read more

England can go toe-to-toe with world’s best teams, says Steph Houghton

first_imgnews Topics Share on Pinterest Photograph: Chesnot/Getty Images Europe Share via Email Share on Messenger Read more And it was Houghton’s indirect free-kick that pulled England level three minutes after a blistering Megan Rapinoe half-volley had put the US in front. “I don’t practise indirect free-kicks but the technique and how I strike the ball I practise a lot,” said the Lionesses’ captain. “I knew where I was going to put it but Rapinoe was standing right in front of me, in my eyeline so I was like: ‘Could you actually move so I can have a look?’ But at the same time it’s about remaining calm in those moments and sticking to where you want to put it, kind of like a penalty, make a decision and go for it.”England have come a long way since their defeat against the USA in this tournament last year and Houghton believes this side is now showing they can go “toe to toe with the best teams in the world”.“Everyone is pushing for that starting place,” Parris said. “No one can be complacent and that’s what you need in order to push on and win a World Cup. You need everyone firing.” Women’s football Share on WhatsApp Thank you for your feedback. Quick guide Follow Guardian sport on social media Hide center_img England women’s football team Reuse this content England’s Steph Houghton and Nikita Parris score to earn draw with USA Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Against the Americans, though, she refused to get frustrated. “Whenever I see any midfielder get their head up and have five yards of space, I know my role: get in behind,” she said. “If it doesn’t come, it doesn’t come. The girls will pick out the pass the next time. You can’t get frustrated. You’ve just got to keep making them runs.”With England level, thanks to a stunning Steph Houghton free-kick, her chance finally came and she gave England a 2-1 lead in the 52nd minute. “I knew if I got in behind Crystal Dunn I would be able to have at least two yards on her. She is quick, she will recover but I’m just as quick and, if I’ve got two yards, I’m going to go for it.”Falling behind in both matches has tested the team in a new way and both times they have shown resilience and confidence. “From the start in the game against Brazil, when we went 1-0 down, to here, when we went 1-0 down, our responses are unbelievable. We don’t ever get down on ourselves because we know the quality that we’ve got and in offensive moments we can cause some damage and we did that today.”Houghton laughed when asked whether Phil Neville should give his half-time talks pre-game: “Obviously we’ve travelled a long way, some of us have played a lot of games for our clubs and we’re coming into an environment with 22,000 screaming USA fans,” she said of their slow starts. “But we handled it and grew into the game.” Twitter: follow us at @guardian_sportFacebook: like our football and sport pagesInstagram: our favourite photos, films and storiesYouTube: subscribe to our football and sport channels Show Was this helpful? The England forward Nikita Parris has had a busy two weeks with three crucial games for Manchester City, including a 120-minute grind against Arsenal to their third Continental League Cup, before travelling to the US to take part in the SheBelieves Cup.Parris has since started the Lionesses’ 2-1 defeat of Brazil and the impressive 2-2 draw against the USA on Saturday night and it would have been no surprise if the pacy forward had found a little less in her legs. Share on LinkedInlast_img read more

Brazil most costly team in world

first_imgBrazil Brazil overtake Spain as world’s most-expensive national team Brasil Global Tour 18:58 1/15/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Gabriel Jesus Coutinho Neymar Brasil Argentina Eliminatorias 2018 10112016 Thomas Santos/MoWa Press Brazil Russia v Brazil Germany v Brazil Russia Germany Friendlies Neymar Philippe Coutinho Philippe Coutinho’s €160 million switch to Barcelona has seen the Selecao surpass Spain as the most costly national team in world football Philippe Coutinho’s transfer to Barcelona this month saw Brazil surpass Spain as the most expensive national team in world football.The Selecao star cost the Catalan club around €160 million and saw him become the second most expensive signing in the history of football.READ MORE: EXCLUSIVE: BGT meets Willian | Neymar moved to tears | EXCLUSIVE: BGT meets Renato Augusto The most expensive, of course, was Brazil star Neymar, who left Barcelona last year to join French giants Paris Saint-Germain for a jaw-dropping €222 million. Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Coutinho’s switch means the 11 starters for Brazil have fetched a market value of around €530 million, which edges them past Spain (€520 million) and Belgium (€510 million)Indeed, football transfer website Transfermarkt values Brazil as the most valuable collection of players in the world in terms of current market value, too, at a staggering €789.5 million. And while the average age of the squad overall right now is around 28-years-old, the average of their top five most valuable players is just 24.The most expensive national team in the world will reconvene in March as the Brasil Global Tour returns to Europe with a trip to Moscow to face Russia before stopping in Berlin to meet Germany.last_img read more

Klopp has Mourinho’s Man Utd in his sights

first_imgLiverpool Klopp and Liverpool have Mourinho’s Man Utd in their sights Chris Burton 20:08 2/12/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Jurgen Klopp Jose Mourinho Liverpool Manchester United Getty Liverpool Premier League Manchester United Jürgen Klopp Victory for the Reds over the weekend and defeat for their arch-rivals means there are now just two points separating the sides in the Premier League Jurgen Klopp has Manchester United in his sights after seeing Liverpool close to within two points of their arch-rivals in the Premier League table.Another intriguing round of fixtures in the English top-flight has intensified the battle for Champions League spots.Manchester City, who are now 16 points clear at the summit, are running away with the title, but second and fifth are separated by just six points. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Liverpool have moved up to third, following a comfortable 2-0 victory over Southampton, with a shock 1-0 defeat for United at Newcastle leaving Jose Mourinho’s side within striking distance for Klopp and his ambitious troops on Merseyside.The German coach said after narrowing that gap: “I didn’t know United had lost before the game but we know we’re not far away.“We play against them one more time this season at least, so that’s good. For us, 54 points is important.“What the other teams have we have no influence on. We just need to make sure we keep on winning to keep up the pressure.”Liverpool are set to head for Old Trafford on March 10.The Red Devils also have meetings with Chelsea, Manchester City and Arsenal to come before the end of the season, with plenty of twists and turns to be expected.Klopp believes the tussle for top-four finishes will go to the wire, with it up to his side to ensure that they remain in the mix.He added on his targets for the remainder of the 2017-18 campaign: “We want to finish the season top four. The only thing we can do is win our games.“But it will stay tight until the end. The quality of the teams is so big.“Also, in the last few years, a few teams had reached their targets in mid-table by this stage.“Apart from Leicester and Burnley no one has done that. So that will also make the league interesting to the end.” Subscribe to Goal’s Liverpool Correspondent Neil Jones’ weekly email bringing you the best Liverpool FC writing from around the weblast_img read more

Real Madrid slip up against Villarreal

first_imgVillarreal 2 Real Madrid 2: Luca’s debut misjudgement costs Los Blancos Patric Ridge Last updated 1 year ago 04:46 5/20/18 Luca - cropped Getty Images Real Madrid debutant Luca Zidane’s late error proved costly as Villarreal came from behind to secure a 2-2 draw in LaLiga. Luca Zidane made a costly misjudgement on his Real Madrid debut as they squandered a two-goal lead to draw 2-2 with Villarreal in their final LaLiga fixture of the season.Handed a first start by his father with Keylor Navas rested, Luca impressed for much of Saturday’s clash, before showing his inexperience when he was rounded by substitute Samu Castillejo five minutes from time.The goal dashed Madrid’s hopes of pipping Atletico Madrid to second place in LaLiga, less than ideal ahead of their Champions League final against Liverpool next weekend. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Sorry, Cristiano! Pjanic is Juventus’ most important player right now Castillejo’s well-taken equaliser – scored eight minutes after he replaced Pablo Fornals – was a deserved reward for Villarreal, who looked beaten at the interval after Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo put Madrid in control.Bale has often found himself out in the cold under Zinedine Zidane this term, but looked sharp throughout at Estadio de la Ceramica – his fifth goal in four league games setting the tone for a confident first-half display from Los Blancos.Madrid cemented their authority in the 32nd minute when Ronaldo headed in from Marcelo’s sublime cross, but a sloppy second-half performance allowed substitutes Roger Martinez and Castillejo to earn a share of the spoils as a place in the Europa League was guaranteed.FT: @Eng_Villarreal 2-2 #RealMadrid (Roger Martínez 71′ Castillejo 85′; @GarethBale11 11′, @Cristiano 32′) #Emirates | #HalaMadrid — Real Madrid C.F. (@realmadriden) May 19, 2018 Ronaldo wasted little time in testing Villarreal’s second-choice goalkeeper Andres Fernandez, who reacted well to keep out the Portugal forward’s dipping long-range strike.Fernandez was beaten 12 minutes in, though. Luka Modric’s quick free-kick found Bale, who spun free of his marker to arrow a low finish into the bottom-left corner.Villarreal looked to be mustering a response when Fornals struck wide of Luca’s goal on the half hour, but Madrid soon had their second.Having initially delayed his cross, Marcelo delivered an exquisite ball with the outside of his foot at the second time of asking – Ronaldo rising highest to cushion a brilliant header into the far corner.Madrid could have extended their advantage prior to the interval, Modric chipping over from close range before Ronaldo failed to capitalise on an error from Fernandez.Nicola Sansone looked set to pull one back shortly after the restart, but Luca got across sharply to parry the Italian’s free-kick wide.Bale continued to shine at the other end. He started a counter-attack with a wonderful flick into Toni Kroos, whose return pass caught the forward offside on the edge of Villarreal’s box.Luca’s inexperience was exposed when Sansone got in behind with a terrific turn, but Sergio Ramos was on hand to head Enes Unal’s effort off the line after Ronaldo was withdrawn with an eye on the upcoming trip to Kiev.Neither Ramos nor Luca could deny Martinez in the 70th minute, however, the winger cutting in from the left to hammer a thunderous strike high into the net just 184 seconds after replacing Unal.Madrid’s luck was out and it was Martinez’s fellow substitute Castillejo who snatched the draw when he took advantage of Luca’s rush of blood to coolly slot home from a tight angle. read morelast_img read more

Brazil’s World Cup squad: Neymar, Coutinho & all 23 players

first_imgWorld Cup Brazil’s World Cup squad: Neymar, Coutinho & all 23 players at Russia 2018 Last updated 1 year ago 23:51 5/22/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(4) Coutinho, Neymar, Gabriel Jesus Getty World Cup Brazil Brazil v Switzerland Goal takes a look at each of the goalkeepers, defenders, midfielders and attackers named in Tite’s squadlast_img

De Laurentiis: Ancelotti not pushy like Conte

first_imgNapoli De Laurentiis: Ancelotti didn’t insist on players like Conte Sacha Pisani 10:33 5/30/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(1) Antonio Conte Chelsea 2017-18 Getty Images Napoli Carlo Ancelotti Antonio Conte Serie A The Chelsea manager was linked with the Serie A side, however, his demands proved too much for for the club’s boss to deal with Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis said he opted for Carlo Ancelotti over Antonio Conte as the former Bayern Munich manager did not push for signings like the Chelsea boss.Ancelotti replaced Maurizio Sarri on a three-year deal last week – the veteran tactician returning to Serie A for the first time since leaving AC Milan in 2009.Conte, who is reportedly set to be replaced by Sarri at Stamford Bridge, was also in talks with De Laurentiis, however, his demands proved too much for the Napoli owner. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Goalkeeper crisis! Walker to the rescue but City sweating on Ederson injury ahead of Liverpool clash Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Sorry, Cristiano! Pjanic is Juventus’ most important player right now Speaking about the arrival of Ancelotti, De Laurentiis said: “I hope he stays with us for another 10 years, but I always have to think about the good of the club.”I’ll always act with objectivity and not allow myself to be taken by enthusiasm. Don’t worry, with Carlo we’ll do what we have to do.”With Carlo, we’ve felt over the years that he’s a man who’s always given us a sense of serenity.”When he asked me for some players and I said ‘no’, he didn’t keep insisting like Conte. He understood and did so with great tenderness.”If he came here, it’s because he likes the club, city and current team. He’s not someone who’ll use Napoli as a stepping stone.Carlo Ancelotti Napoli“I’ll never forget when Conte courted me for [Kalidou] Koulibaly, going up to €58 million with Chelsea. I told him, ‘what can I do with €58m?’. Money is a means, not an end. The end is Koulibaly.”Sarri guided Napoli to two runner-up finishes in three seasons, having almost dethroned reigning champions Juventus this term.The 59-year-old held talks with Napoli over an extension, however, De Laurentiis turned to Ancelotti amid Sarri’s growing links with Chelsea.”There is no background to Sarri’s exit,” De Laurentiis said. “At a certain point I told the press that his time was over.”I am in charge of a business, and I can’t be waiting for others to be available when they should always be available for the club.”De Laurentiis added: “I gave him time, but then the time expired and I moved on by taking Carlo Ancelotti to Napoli.”We started to collaborate together for two days in Rome and then with Ancelotti first in London, then in Canada.”last_img read more