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Thistle boss Caldwell calls bonus-point shoot-out ‘rubbish’

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Partick Thistle boss Gary Caldwell has taken a swipe at the rubbish Betfred Cup rules branding the bonus-point shoot-out a pointless affair.The Jags boss saw his side lose out 6-5 on penalties to Hamilton after an entertaining 2-2 draw at the Foys Stadium.Thistle debut boy Rafa De Vita was the guilty party after seeing his spot-kick saved but Caldwell whose side can claim top spot in Group F by beating Clyde at home on Wednesday insisted he was barely ruffled during the post-match contest.He said: It was an entertaining game for the supporters but these penalties are stupid. I dont know why theyre in the competition.Its rubbish. Its the most calm Ive ever been in a shoot-out because its pointless.It didnt matter to either team, maybe in other groups its different but it doesnt make a huge difference to anything in this one.Accies youngster Ross Cunningham looked to have stolen the headlines as he marked his first start for Hamilton with a stunning double.The 21-year-old cancelled out Ryan Williamsons opener then curled home a sensational second to put the hosts ahead.Shea Gordon swept Thistle level but Caldwells side got a lucky break with Aaron McGowans penalty miss as the game finished square.After 11 successful spot-kicks, Owain Fon Williams denied De Vita to give Accies the extra point which sees them close to within one of the Jags with one game left.But Hamilton boss Brian Rices main concern was with midfielder Ronan Hughes, who was carried off on a stretcher after a 10-minute hold-up wearing a neck brace after a collision with Joe Cardle.He said: It was really concerning the game had to be stopped for so long because of the injury to Ronan.Its his neck or collar bone, Im not sure. Hopefully hell be OK.Brian Easton had to go off as well. I dont think its too serious. I think he just rolled his ankle and went off as a precaution.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Newport, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '3ff89c4d-1d1f-41f4-9fc3-4b354b08398a'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Thistle boss Caldwell calls bonus-point shoot-out \u2018rubbish\u2019'});

July 20th 2019, 2:13 pm

Goodwin admits St Mirren need to get new players in before Premiership start

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St Mirren manager Jim Goodwin insists it is crucial they bring in new signings ahead of the Ladbrokes Premiership campaign following their Betfred Cup penalty shoot-out defeat to East Kilbride.Lowland League outfit East Kilbride triumphed 6-5 on penalties following a 0-0 draw, which leaves St Mirrens hopes of progressing to the knock-out stage hanging by a threat.St Mirren have only added Oan Djorkaeff and Tony Andreu to the squad which retained their Premiership place following Play-Off success against Dundee United and there have been a raft of departures.Goodwin revealed Saints are working hard to get bodies in but knows it is vital they now get some of their targets signed up.We are short of bodies and its difficult for the players as the majority of them have played three games in a week, Goodwin said.At this time of the season thats not ideal preparation. Theyre not anywhere near as fit as what they should be at the moment and you would like to have more options there to freshen things up like some of the bigger clubs can.But I knew taking on the job that we had a job on our hands to get people in. But were doing all we can to make that happen before the league starts. Theres not enough in the squad at the moment. It would be unfair throw kids in at this stage as theyre not quite ready. We need good first-team pros who can come in and make a difference.Were confident of getting one or two over the line soon but it takes time. I wouldnt have thought wed have any in before Tuesday. Theres none close enough to say theyll be over this weekend to sign papers. Easter Road is the priority.East Kilbrides Ryan Sinnamon and Saints Danny Mullen missed in the regulation shoot-out and when Cody Cooke was ordered to retake his spot-kick as referee Colin Steven hadnt blown his whistle, his second effort was saved by Alan Martin.That presented Ruari Paton with the chance to clinch the bonus point and he made no mistake.East Kilbride manager Stuart Malcolm said: The game finished a draw and we got a bonus point for the penalties, which was a great for the fans. But for us its another step closer to where we want to be at the start of the season.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By ScottH'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '607a4103-03ec-454a-adc4-f1d98893a58f'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Goodwin admits St Mirren need to get new players in before Premiership start'});

July 20th 2019, 2:13 pm

Alloa keeper Parry may require plastic surgery after collision, says boss Grant

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Alloa Athletic goalkeeper Neil Parry may need plastic surgery after a serious injury against Hibernian, according to his manager Peter Grant. Parry collided heavily with goalscorer Christian Doidge for the opening goal and was replaced by Chris Henry straight away.Hes got a bad one, hes going to hospital now so theyre talking about even a bit of plastic surgery being needed. He was brave to come at the opportunity and it was a complete accident, so weve got no problems. Itll probably make it him a bit nicer looking!His nose was bleeding and hes got a scar on the top of his head, thats the concern. I think the wound is too wide so thats why theyre talking about plastic surgery. After Parry left the pitch, Hibernian continued to threaten and wrapped up the win five minutes from time thanks to a Tom James strike. Hibs manager Paul Heckingbottom admitted his side needed to change things at half-time after going into the interval goalless. Florian Kamberi and Daryl Horgan chances aside, Hibs lacked ideas in the first half and brought on Scott Allan and Fraser Murray to seal the game late on. It was tough, I thought first half we were sloppy with the ball, so we had to change things at half time, Heckingbottom said.With a team really sitting in against you and not much space, the shape we were playing played into their hands a bit. We had to change it and try and get some real width to stretch them. I felt we needed a tactical change and had to make space for Scott (Allan) and Fraser (Murray).We were the better team all the way through, but we were making it easier for them than it should have been.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '07e1a8a6-db7c-482d-b332-d29020332f90'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Alloa keeper Parry may require plastic surgery after collision, says boss Grant'});

July 20th 2019, 2:13 pm

Hamilton edge Partick Thistle on penalties after Ross Cunningham brace secures draw

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Ross Cunningham marked his first Hamilton start with a double as Accies grabbed a bonus-point win against Partick Thistle with a 6-5 penalty shootout victory following a 2-2 draw.The 21-year-old had previously appeared 17 times off the bench but rewarded home boss Brian Rices decision to start him as he cancelled out Ryan Williamsons opener before curling home a stunning second.Shea Gordon squared it up again though before Accies defender Aaron McGowan blew the chance to send Hamilton top of Group F when he blazed over with a penalty.That sent the game to a shootout, which Accies edged when Jags new-boy Rafa De Vita saw his attempt saved by Owain Fon Williams.Accies now close to within one point of Gary Caldwells leaders with one game to play but the result came at a cost for Rice after Ronan Hughes and Brian Easton both went off injured.Thistle struck first after McGowans 16th-minute blunder allowed Williamson to loft a delicate finish over Fon Williams.But Jags celebrations were curtailed 60 seconds later when Cunningham turned in the box and drove into the bottom corner.A hush then fell over the ground as paramedics rushed to attend to Hughes after he crumpled to the deck following a collision with Joe Cardle.The midfielder was placed in a brace as a precaution before being taken off on a stretcher with Easton then going off nine after rolling an ankle during the nine-minute long period of added time.Accies had been out-played during the first period but grabbed the lead on 54 minutes as Cunningham swept a stunning finish into the top corner.Thistle levelled up with quarter of an hour left as Gordon converted from Lewis Mansells delivery but Hamilton blew the chance to retake command almost immediately when McGowan skied a penalty after Sean McGinty dragged down George Oakley.Thistle pushed for the win but the game went to penalties as Accies held on.After 11 successful kicks in the shootout, it was Thistle debutant De Vita who was the first to falter.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Newport, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '9bb22435-5957-499e-a405-505e53ba5e2a'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Hamilton edge Partick Thistle on penalties after Ross Cunningham brace secures draw'});

July 20th 2019, 1:10 pm

St Mirren up against it after East Kilbride penalty loss

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St Mirrens hopes of progressing in the Betfred Cup are hanging by a thread following a penalty shoot-out defeat to Lowland League outfit East Kilbride.After a goalless draw which earned both sides a point, the extra point was decided with a shoot out and East Kilbride triumphed 6-5.St Mirren had a chance to win on penalties after goalkeeper Vaclav Hladky saved Ryan Sinnamons effort but Danny Mullen blazed his spot-kick over the bar.Sub Cody Cooke was forced to retake his penalty as referee Colin Steven had not blown his whistle and his second effort was saved by the excellent Alan Martin.Ruari Paton then stepped up to win the shoot-out and St Mirren now face a tall order to progress from their group, having picked up four points from their opening three games, with just one game remaining.St Mirren should have taken the lead after 22 minutes when Tony Andreus flick sent Oan Djorkaeff in on goal.But the Frenchman, son of World Cup winner Youri, hesitated inside the penalty area when he should have shot and that allowed Sinnamon to get back and make a goal-saving challenge.St Mirren then enjoyed a period of pressure as they tried to make the breakthrough and captain Stephen McGinn tested goalkeeper Martin with a drive from the edge of the box.Kyle Magennis then had a chance when he got to a Andreu pass before Martin and went round the goalkeeper but the angle was too tight and he fired into the sidenetting.Just before the break Martin produced a stunning double save. Stephen McGinn slid a through ball for Danny Mullen and his first effort was beaten away by Martin and then the Saints striker lashed the rebound goalward but East Kilbrides goalkeeper showed tremendous reactions to keep it out.St Mirren pushed for the breakthrough after the interval with Djorkaeff, Mullen and Andreu all having efforts on target but Martin was equal to all of them.Sub Cooke then went close with a header from a Cammy MacPherson cross but his effort just cleared the crossbar. Martin then produced a brilliant reaction save when sub Kim Kellerman fired a snapshot through a crowded penalty area.With neither side able to make the breakthrough, both picked up a point and the bonus point was decided from the spot.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '212a951b-dd63-4a20-b933-61f1406fa6ae'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'St Mirren up against it after East Kilbride penalty loss'});

July 20th 2019, 12:41 pm

Hibs’ new boys claim crucial win over Alloa

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Hibernian were made to wait to seal a crucial 2-0 Betfred Cup win against Alloa with new signings Christian Doidge and Tom James scoring second-half goals on their Easter Road debuts.Wasps manager Peter Grant has a tough act to follow in Jim Goodwin but would have been pleased with the opening half-hour in Leith, in which the visitors looked a tough outfit to break down.Paul Heckingbottom lamented his sides finishing in Stirling last weekend and would have felt the same in the first half hour, as Daryl Horgan and Florian Kamberi both hit efforts straight at Neil Parry from close range.It was the visitors who grew stronger in the first half as Alan Trouten flashed a volley wide.As the clock ticked closer to the interval Hibs looked more devoid of ideas.The Hibees boss noticed, and introduced Scott Allan, for his return to Easter Road, and Fraser Murray at half-time. Not much seemed to change immediately, as two fumbles from Ofir Marciano threatened to give away a goal.Midway through the second half, Doidge and Parry collided but it was the striker who nipped in ahead first, grabbing his first goal and easing the growing concern within Easter Road.Unfortunately, the goalkeeper came off the worst on this occasion and was replaced by Chris Henry.Doidge thought he had headed in a second five minutes later but was denied by an offside flag.James, another new arrival, sealed the win in stunning fashion five minutes from the end, curling a fierce shot well into the top corner.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '044a4529-d929-421d-b0a1-c51e22f30790'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Hibs\u2019 new boys claim crucial win over Alloa'});

July 20th 2019, 12:41 pm

Sale of Kieran Trippier helps Tottenham move to front of queue for Napoli defender

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The Albania international is on the way out of the Serie A side this summer and has attracted suitors across Europe.Radio Kiss Kiss has reported that Spurs’ sale of Kieran Trippier to Atletico Madrid has aided their pursuit of the Napoli defender as the Spanish side have now ended their interest in Hysaj.However, the Premier League side are likely to face competition from Roma, who have also expressed interest.Napoli have set an asking price of around €25 million for the 25-year-old defender, who has 170 Serie A appearances to his name.Now read...TRANSFERSIs there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigatesSCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 20th 2019, 11:55 am

Guardiola plans penalty practice after City’s Shanghai shoot-out loss to Wolves

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Pep Guardiola vowed to practice penalties after spot-kicks proved an unexpected weakness in Manchester Citys armoury at the Premier League Asia Trophy.Raheem Sterling blazed over from 12 yards in normal time and City players then saw three penalties saved as they were beaten by Wolves in a shoot-out in Shanghai.Ilkay Gundogan, David Silva and Lukas Nmecha all failed to beat Rui Patricio from the spot as Wolves prevailed 3-2 to claim the trophy in a poor-quality shoot-out at the Hongkou Stadium. pic.twitter.com/L7SDhSxnc2 Wolves (@Wolves) July 20, 2019After sweeping almost all before them to win a domestic treble last season, it seems the Premier League champions have at least one area to brush up on.City boss Guardiola said: We didnt expect that. I see my players take a penalty and I am always looking forward to scoring a goal but we have to practice. Were going to practice to be better takers next time.That aside, defeat in unfamiliar hot and humid conditions after a week of travel difficulties was hardly a major setback for City.There were positives, not least in the first-half performance of Kevin De Bruyne, who looked in great touch as he bids to put the injury frustrations of the past year behind him.Kevin De Bruyne looked in good touch (Nick Potts/PA)Hes been top, Guardiola said. Unfortunately last season we missed him a lot. We did incredibly well without him but we are stronger with him.Last season he didnt have a holiday but he has had more time to rest and he came back like he did two seasons ago.Hopefully he can keep his level. Hes incredibly positive in his mind and his quality speaks for itself. He made an incredible first half, really good.PENALTIES | Nmechas shot is saved.Wolves win 3-2 on penalties #mancity Manchester City (@ManCity) July 20, 2019Wolves came through despite Conor Coady and Max Kilman also missing penalties, but their success was good reward for what has been a positive week on and off the field in China.With Chinese ownership, Wolves have made a strong marketing push in the country and hosted a number of commercial events. Manager Nuno Espirito Santo has also worked his players well as they prepare for the start of competitive action with a Europa League qualifier against Crusaders next Thursday.Nuno said: The week has gone OK. We go back home better than we arrived. This was one of the main ideas from the trip to the Asia Trophy.We attended a lot of events and the players were patient. They had strong sessions in the morning and then had to go to events.Nuno Espirito Santo has been pleased with Wolves trip to China (Andy Hampson/PA)All the things we accomplished this week were good. Its good preparation for the future.Its important we return healthy and we are better to start progressing, game by game, day by day, always reaching high standards.We go home now and prepare ourselves for Thursday.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Hampson, PA, Shanghai'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'cf10257d-cd65-44f1-a7cc-ed53d99cd9eb'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Guardiola plans penalty practice after City\u2019s Shanghai shoot-out loss to Wolves'});

July 20th 2019, 11:40 am

Inter boss Conte not ready to give up on Lukaku after United reject initial bid

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Manchester United have rejected Inter Milans 60 million euros offer for Romelu Lukaku but Antonio Conte has not given up hope of signing the striker.Just two years after joining the Old Trafford giants, the 26-year-old is keen to move on to pastures new, with the Serie A side eager to bring him to the San Siro.PA understands United received a 60 million euros (54million) bid from Inter two days ago, which was rejected out of hand as it falls well short of their valuation.Antonio Conte is keen to bring Romelu Lukaku to Inter Milan (NIck Potts/PA).The two clubs met for an International Champions Cup clash in Singapore on Saturday, when the players latest knock meant he watched his current employers win 1-0 from the sidelines.Asked about Inters bid and interest in Leicester defender Harry Maguire United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said: Well, of course you want to have your team settled as early as possible.But, as I said here as well, whoevers available, we work with them and we work with them to get them performing. We work them in the training and lets see 8th or 9th of August whos here and whos not.Lukaku has yet to feature for United in pre-season due to knocks that appear to be frustrating his manager.If youre a player and you dont manage to train for a week and hes missed three games now of course I think hell be concerned, Solskjaer said. Hes working to get back on the pitch and lets see how long that takes. Its his ankle.Whether Lukaku ever dons a United shirt again remains to be seen, as Inter boss Conte remains keen to sign a player who turned him down when Chelsea manager in 2017."In one side there is my hope, my will" #Inter boss Antonio Conte has not given up on signing #MUFC striker Romelu Lukaku pic.twitter.com/BVyN5HIVs1 Simon Peach (@SimonPeach) July 20, 2019I think that I have always answered yesterday about Lukaku, he said. I think that its not right to speak about the player that in this moment is a United player.For this reason, I think we must show great respect for the club and at the same time also for the player and also for my players.As I said yesterday, Lukaku is a playerI like him, I like him because I consider him a player that could improve our team.But in one side there is my hope, my will. In the other side, then well see what we find with the club.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Simon Peach, PA Chief Football Writer, Singapore'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'ea676c99-c43b-41ca-b3bf-4650080c4a41'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Inter boss Conte not ready to give up on Lukaku after United reject initial bid'});

July 20th 2019, 11:40 am

Marcelo says Neymar is better than Eden Hazard and would be welcome at Real Madrid

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The Brazil international wants to leave PSG this summer and has been linked with both El Clasico giants.Real have already splashed out large amounts in the market to bring in Eden Hazard, Luka Jovic, Ferland Mendy and Eder Militao, and a deal for Neymar would require a substantial outlay.However, Marcelo is eager to see his Brazil team-mate join him at the Bernabeu and even insisted that he would be an upgrade on their marquee signing from Chelsea."Neymar's an unpredictable player,"the left-back told Marca."When a defender has anticipated something, he's already thought of something else and he's impossible to defend."Having Neymar atReal Madridwould be a huge pleasure.Madridhave to do everything to sign the best players in the world and his past atBarcelona wouldn't be a problem."He added: "Eden's a top player.""A player of high quality and, likeNeymar, he has the quality to be in the top five."He's impressive. You can't compare them, butNeymaris better for me."Now read...TRANSFERSIs there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigatesSCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 20th 2019, 11:25 am

It’s win or bust for St Johnstone – boss Wright

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Tommy Wright admits it is win or bust for St Johnstones Betfred Cup ambitions when they face Ross County on Sunday.The Perth outfit suffered the biggest shock of the competition so far on Tuesday as they slumped 1-0 at Ladbrokes League One side Montrose.They now host top-flight new boys from Dingwall and Wright confessed another slip-up is likely to kill of Saints hopes qualifying from Group B.The Northern Irishman told the McDiarmid outfits official website: Its now a difficult task for us to get out the group and simply we must win against Ross County and in our final two matches after that to progress.If we dont win then our Betfred Cup campaign is over. A draw and penalties will most likely not be enough so we have to be positive and on the front foot from the off to go out and win the match.County looked strong at home to Montrose and they are a big side with lots of energy and legs in the midfield.Theyll be dangerous from set plays and have options up top with the likes of Billy McKay, who is a proven goalscorer.Winning breeds confidence and theyll still be on a high from last season but were at home and we fancy ourselves against anybody here. Its going to have to be a good performance for 90 minutes because they have players who can cause problems.It was hugely disappointing the other night and the injuries we had are no excuse as the team sent out should have been able to win the match.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '2634a2a3-0f3b-4f8e-96cc-e1674152989d'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'It\u2019s win or bust for St Johnstone \u2013 boss Wright'});

July 20th 2019, 11:10 am

Solskjaer compares Greenwood with Giggs after beating Inter Milan

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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer praised Mason Greenwood and compared the teenage stars development to that of Ryan Giggs following Manchester Uniteds friendly win against Inter Milan.A sell-out crowd at Singapores National Stadium witnessed an intense friendly between Romelu Lukakus current and prospective employers as the striker watched on from the sidelines.United outplayed Inter for the most part and finally made the breakthrough after Solskjaer made 10 changes with a third of the International Champions Cup encounter remaining.Ole Gunnar Solskjaer praised his young stars (Martin Rickett/PA)Eyebrows were raised when Ashley Young was booed upon his introduction in Singapore, although his free-kick hushed his vocal critics and resulted in Greenwood scoring his second goal in as many games.The 17-year-old showed great composure before slamming home to seal a 1-0 win and hit the crossbar as the clock wound down.The kids only 17 and hes learning everyday training with these boys, Solskjaer said.Hes been with us the last few months and hes grown in confidence, grown in stature and, as Ive said before, when youve got players who perform its difficult to keep them out.Big smiles all round #MUFC #MUTOUR #ICC2019 pic.twitter.com/JH7fwshB6F Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 20, 2019But weve got to keep our feet on the ground with him as well because hes only 17 and therell be ups and downs, but at the moment hes enjoying his football.Asked if he had considered sending the teenager on loan this season, the Norwegian made a comparison to Sir Alex Fergusons treatment of United great.No, Masons never been on my mind to send out on loan, Solskjaer said. Hes one we have to keep at our place, keep him and play him when we feel its good for him and at the moment hes flying.He reminds me a little bit about the Giggsy story, that you cant really send him on loan. For me, hes ready to be in this squad.Ashley Young is a veteran in the side (Adam Davy/PA)While Greenwoods Old Trafford career is only getting started, Youngs Old Trafford career is winding down at the age of 34.The versatile full-back has been with the club since 2011 and skippered the side for much of last season, yet the United-dominant crowd in Singapore jeered him frequently and loudly.I think Ashley is a top professional, Solskjaer said when asked about the reception.He always gives absolutely everything and his delivery ended up with a goal.Of course, we want fans to support our players and Ash has been a very loyal servant to this club for many, many years and hell keep on performing when he plays.#MUFC fans brought the NOISE to the Singapore National Stadium today!Thanks for your amazing support, guys! #MUTOUR #ICC2019 pic.twitter.com/7SaC7ZPPWF Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 20, 2019I havent spoke to him theyve had to do running after the game. Hes probably finished with his running now so well have a chat with him now but I dont think hell get effected.Youngs game time is likely to be diminished by the summer arrival of flying right-back Aaron Wan-Bissaka, who earned Uniteds man-of-the-match in Singapore after a performance that the fans in the ground loved.Were building a team and Wan-Bissaka did really well today, he said. Hes hard to go past and he was going forward as well so Im very pleased with his performance and the teams performance. AWB You've voted for @AWBissaka as your #MUFC Man of the Match #MUTOUR #ICC2019 pic.twitter.com/VJMYBN0Eb6 Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 20, 2019Weve had three games and not conceded any goals so were looking strong as a defensive unit.You can see the confidence grow in him, hes been here two weeks and hes made an impact on the squad and supporters.Hes got things to learn, hes only 21 still but hes got a great chance to have a long, good career ahead of him.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Simon Peach, PA Chief Football Writer, Singapore'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '1648d9be-9268-4c71-8660-0acb4d08b367'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Solskjaer compares Greenwood with Giggs after beating Inter Milan'});

July 20th 2019, 11:10 am

Aston Villa spending spree set to continue as deal is struck for Egypt winger

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The 24-year-old racked up nine goals and nine assists in the Turkish Super Lig last season before starting every game of his country’s disappointing Africa Cup of Nations campaign this summer.Hosts Egypt suffered a shock defeat to South Africa in the last 16 after Trezeguet notched a goal and an assist during the group stage.Villa have agreed a fee with Kasimpasa for the winger’s arrival, according to the Mail Online.Sampdoria were also interested in the player but he is set to become the latest new arrival at Dean Smith’s newly-promoted side.This summer Villa have already splashed out on the signings of Tyrone Mings, Wesley Moraes, Matt Targett, Ezri Konsa, Jota, Anwar El Ghazi and Kortney Hause.Now read...TRANSFERSIs there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigatesSCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 20th 2019, 10:55 am

Young booed by United fans as Greenwood strike secures friendly win over Inter

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Teenager Mason Greenwood fired Manchester United to victory against Inter Milan on a night that saw Ashley Young subjected to loud and frequent jeers by fans in Singapore.The build-up to Saturdays International Champions Cup clash at the National Stadium has been dominated by the Serie A sides public interest in Romelu Lukaku.But as a knock ruled out the Belgium striker for a third straight friendly, 17-year-old Greenwood again underlined his quality by coming off the bench to seal Ole Gunnar Solskjaers United a 1-0 victory.The forward also hit the bar after coming on with a third of the game remaining one of 10 changes made at that stage in sweltering Singapore.Young, who captained the side for the majority of last season, was another to be brought in and heard his named booed loudly when it was read out by the stadium announcer.The 34-year-old continued to be jeered on a night that ended with United racking up their third pre-season win A sea of red welcomed the sides at a sold-out National Stadium, where Solskjaers name echoed around the ground as United made a positive start.Marcus Rashford started well and Luke Shaw went agonisingly close to opening the scoring with a fizzing, low drive.Anthony Martial and Rashford were denied by Samir Handanovic as United continued to edge proceedings that included a water break on the half-hour mark.Daniel James wasted a good chance and Martial had an attempt, with Danilo DAmbrosio going closest for Inter as David De Gea, making his first appearance of the tour, flapped.Martial got fans on their feet before Lingard saw a strike cleared off the line, while Nemanja Matic hit the post.Pogba was impressing and Aaron Wan-Bissaka cleared off the line when Inter jolted into life, with former United target Ivan Perisic going close soon after.Victor Lindelof was replaced by Phil Jones after appearing to pick up a slight hamstring issue and Solskjaer soon made sweeping changes.Young was among those brought on and his named was booed when it was read out. The full-back continued to be jeered and the only respite appeared to come when he had a shot, including the free-kick that led to Greenwoods second United goal.Handanovic could only parry Youngs attempt, with the 17-year-old taking the loose ball and then a smart touch away from danger before firing home a lovely left-footed strike.Greenwood soon saw an effort clip the top of the bar after meeting a cross from Tahith Chong, who was among numerous players getting rough treatment without protection.Solskjaer did not looked pleased on the touchline unhappiness that only grew when Chong fell to the deck in pain after a few minutes.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Simon Peach, PA Chief Football Writer, Singapore'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '923e9a3f-323b-418e-a443-e2379fd7993e'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Young booed by United fans as Greenwood strike secures friendly win over Inter'});

July 20th 2019, 10:40 am

Bayer Leverkusen youngster says he's ready for next step amid Liverpool interest

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The 20-year-old midfielder has been linked with a move to Anfield this summer, but the Reds could face competition for his signature from the likes of Bayern Munich and Barcelona.However, the Germany international is calm about his next move as he focuses on preparing for another season with his current employers.“I am honest, at some point the next step must come for me,” he toldBild.“But I’m not going to worry about when exactly that will happen.“What counts now is Bayer Leverkusen. We still have a lot to do. Leverkusen very quickly signalled that they wanted to keep me.“That’s why it wasn’t an issue for me. Now I’m starting my tenth year here, maybe we can make it a golden one for the club.“What will happen afterwards has not yet been decided. There is no club where I have already signed.”Havertz was also questioned about speculation that he could be heading to Bavaria next to join Bundesliga champions Bayern.“I really don’t know yet whether Bayern is the next and right step for me,” he said.“I also don’t know whether foreign countries would not be more suitable for me. I really don’t think too much about it at the moment.“I have that self-confidence, yes [that I could play for Bayern]. But the same applies to other clubs as well.”Now read...TRANSFERSIs there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigatesSCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 20th 2019, 10:25 am

Liverpool close in on Turkish midfielder – but fans won’t get to see him for another year

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Turkish outlet Fanatik reports that the 20-year-old has attracted the attention of big clubs across Europe after an impressive 2018/19 campaign.Liverpool are said to be in the running to sign him and are set to make an approach in the next few days, but they are aware that he is unlikely to be awarded a work permit.To get around the problem, the Anfield club intend to send him back to Trabzonsporon loan next season after completing a permanent move.Omur’s deal with the Turkish outfit expires in 2022 and while the club’s president Ahmet Agaoglu has insisted the youngster isn’t for sale, he could be tempted by the structure of this deal.Now read...TRANSFERSIs there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigatesSCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 20th 2019, 10:10 am

Dawson hails Bruce impact as Newcastle beat West Ham in Shanghai

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Ben Dawson claimed the impact of Steve Bruce was immediate as Newcastle won their first friendly since appointing their new manager.Yoshinori Muto scored the only goal as the Magpies beat West Ham 1-0 in the third-place play-off of the Premier League Asia Trophy in Shanghai.Bruce only linked up with the squad on Thursday but Dawson, who will now revert to his role as academy head after taking temporary charge of first-team matters, claimed there had been a big change. Dawson said: I think it was obvious the difference having a manager in place. Hes obviously given the players some focus and direction.Hes been able to express his expectations and the standards he wants out on the pitch to both the staff and the players.Theyve obviously been able to work on that the last couple of days and put in the performance they did tonight.It has been a troubled summer at St James Park after the departure of Rafael Benitez as manager, the loss of key players Ayoze Perez and Salomon Rondon, and with the continuing takeover rumours.Newcastle keeper Martin Dubravka reckons the players need to step up and take on board the ideas of new boss Steve Bruce (Nick Potts/PA Images).Bruce spoke about the need to sign new players, particularly strikers, when he addressed media on Friday but goalkeeper Martin Dubravka insists the current players also need to step up.He said: It has only been three days but he has been trying to describe what is his way, his style of play.Three days is not enough to know each other but we are professionals and we have to take on the responsibilities.We have to take risks in games and create chances. We did today. They were very well organised but that was the key.Japanese forward Muto took his chance to shine as he turned home Jamie Sterrys cross after 34 minutes.It condemned West Ham to a second defeat of the week after losing 4-1 to Manchester City in Nanjing on Wednesday.West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini believes there are positives from the pre-season tour despite a couple of defeats (Andy Hampson/PA Images).Hammers boss Manuel Pellegrini feels the trip to China has been worthwhile, however.He said: We had 10 days in Switzerland where we worked in a physical way and this week in China we have played two games to see what our level is. We also gave minutes to the whole squad.We are working well and now we need to use the next three weeks to make sure we are a mentally and physically competitive team.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By By Andy Hampson, PA, Shanghai'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '8d033929-93d8-4c28-815b-e050dea2ff8a'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Dawson hails Bruce impact as Newcastle beat West Ham in Shanghai'});

July 20th 2019, 9:19 am

Mohamed Salah set to become England’s best-paid footballer with new Liverpool deal

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The Sun reports that the Anfield club could offer their star forward as much as £22.4 million per year.That equates to around £430,000 per week, which would rival the salary package of Manchester United winger Alexis Sanchez.Salah put pen to paper on fresh terms with the Reds until 2023 last summer, but Liverpool bosses want to extend his stay by another year on more lucrative terms.The 27-year-old has been a huge success since arriving from Roma in the summer of 2017, scoring 54 goals in 74 Premier League appearances and helping the club to Champions League glory.Now read...TRANSFERSIs there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigatesSCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 20th 2019, 8:23 am

Arsenal, Everton and Barcelona form queue for Juventus youngster Moise Kean

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The 19-year-old broke into the Serie A champions’ first team towards the end of the 2018/19 season but faces stiff competition for a starting place from the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Paulo Dybala and Mario Mandzukic.Gianluca Di Marzio reports that Everton have shown great interest in the striker, while Arsenal and Barcelona have made enquiries to the Turin club.Juve have set an asking price of around €25-30 million for the teenager but intend to insert a right of refusal clause into a deal regarding a future sale.Kean scored six goals in 13 Serie A appearances last season and earned his maiden call-up to the senior Italy teamm, before scoring twice in three Azzurri outings.Now read...TRANSFERSIs there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigatesSCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 20th 2019, 7:49 am

Tottenham and Atletico Madrid hold crunch talks over Christian Eriksen future

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The Denmark international is in the final year of his contract at the Premier League club and has spoken of his desire to find a new challenge this summer.According to Spanish outlet AS, Atleti CEO Miguel Angel Gil met a Spurs representative to discuss Eriksen’s future.A transfer fee of €60-70 million is said to have been discussed as the La Liga outfit look to bring in an attacking midfielder.Real Madrid’s James Rodriguez has been heavily linked with a move to the Wanda Metropolitana, but Eriksen is considered as the first alternative to the Colombian if a deal fails to materialise.Reports on Saturday claimed that Spurs are willing to more than double the Dane’s salary in a bid to keep him in north London, but they are still some way from securing an extension.Now read...TRANSFERSIs there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigatesSCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 20th 2019, 7:19 am

Inter Milan knocked back with £54 million bid for Manchester United striker

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The Serie A side have made the Belgium international their top target for the summer transfer window but are yet to meet United’s valuation.ESPN FC reports that their latest proposal has been turned down by the Old Trafford hierarchy, who are holding out for between £80-90 million.Lukaku has four years left to run on his Red Devils deal and time is running out for him to complete a move, with three weeks remaining before the Premier League transfer deadline.The 26-year-old wants to join Antonio Conte’s side and United will let him go if a suitable offer comes in, but the latest bid has not met their demands.The two clubs face off in the International Champions Cup in Singapore on Saturday.ESPN also claim that United turned down the chance to sign Inter striker Mauro Icardi, who has been put on the market this summer after being told he isn’t a part of Conte’s plans.Now read...TRANSFERSIs there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigatesSCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 20th 2019, 7:07 am

Semi Ajayi completes move to West Brom

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West Brom have completed the signing of Nigeria international Semi Ajayi from Rotherham.Ajayi, who can play in defence or midfield, has signed a four-year contract with the Baggies for an undisclosed fee, believed to be in the region of 1.5million.The 25-year-old is West Broms third summer signing, following Kenneth Zohore and Croatian midfielder Filip Krovinovic as new head coach Slaven Bilic continues to rebuild the squad.Its a great opportunity for me. I want to play at the highest level and I have joined a club with the ambition to get there, Ajayi said on the West Brom website.I want to play my part in helping the team get promoted because that is definitely the target.Ajayi joined Rotherham on a free transfer from Cardiff during 2017 and went on to make more than 100 appearances for the Millers, who were relegated from the Sky Bet Championship last season.I know Im not the finished article and I feel I can improve. I am playing alongside some top defenders and I think I can learn a great deal from them, Ajayi added.For me it doesnt matter where you are in the league top or bottom. I want to win every game and I prepare like that.But I want to play at the highest level and its exciting to be joining a club that wants to get back there.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'df742871-61e5-4b7e-932f-d5490ebfa57e'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Semi Ajayi completes move to West Brom'});

July 20th 2019, 7:07 am

Manchester United snub Inter off for Lukaku

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Manchester United have rejected Inter Milans 60 million euros offer for Romelu Lukaku, PA understands.Just two years after joining the Old Trafford giants, the 26-year-old is keen to move onto pastures new and Antonio Conte is keen to bring the striker to Serie A.PA understands that United received a 60 million euros (54million) bid from Inter two days ago, which was rejected out of hand as it falls well short of their valuation.The two clubs meet for an International Champions Cup clash in Singapore on Saturday, but Lukaku will watch from the sidelines due to his latest knock.On the eve of the match, Inter head coach Conte confirmed his desire to sign a player he missed out on when Chelsea boss in 2017.I think frustrated is a big word, he said in English when asked about the inability to complete a deal.Lukaku is a United player and this is the reality. You know very well that I like this player, but also in the past when I was Chelseas coach and I tried to bring him to Chelsea.But I repeat, today Lukaku is a player of United and this is the reality and this is the truth.Pushed on Inters interest in him, Conte said: I think that at this moment, I repeat, were talking about a player of another club.For this reason, I think that its right (we) dont talk about Lukaku because I have great respect for United.As I said before, for sure, I like this player and I consider him an important player for us to have a good improvement. But, at the same time, there is a market, a transfer market.We know very well which is our situation at this moment. Well see, well see what happens but now, for sure, Lukaku is a United player.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Simon Peach, PA Chief Football Writer, Singapore'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '3da40e0b-2977-455c-b0b1-202479b38acd'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Manchester United snub Inter off for Lukaku'});

July 20th 2019, 6:37 am

Crystal Palace make bid for Everton midfielder James McCarthy - report

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The Republic of Ireland international is in the final year of his contract at Goodison Park and has made just one Premier League appearance since breaking his leg in January 2018.Sky Sports News reports that Palace have come in with a formal bid for the 28-year-old.West Brom failed with an effort to sign the player on loan in January, according to the outlet.McCarthy returned to the Toffees’ matchday squad at the start of the year but failed to break into Marco Silva’s side, earning just one substitute appearance against Manchester United before the end of the campaign.Now read...TRANSFERSIs there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigatesSCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 20th 2019, 6:19 am

Danny Rose won’t be forced into Tottenham exit as England defender considers options

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The England left-back was left out of Spurs’ squad for the pre-season tour of Asia this week so that he could find a move away from north London.However, the Telegraph reports that Rose is yet to receive an offer and won’t be forced out of the Premier League club if he has doubts over any proposals.The 29-year-old has a contract with the Champions League runners-up until 2021 and is valued at around £20 million.No English clubs have come forward with a bid and an overseas switch appears more likely as PSG and Juventus are among the big clubs to be credited with an interest.Rose is prepared to stay put and fight for his place next season if the right offer fails to materialise before the end of the transfer window.Now read...TRANSFERSIs there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigatesSCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 20th 2019, 6:07 am

Moura using Champions League final disappointment to fuel bid for Spurs trophy

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Lucas Moura respects Mauricio Pochettinos decision to drop him for the Champions League final and will try to use that disappointment to drive Tottenham to silverware this season.Signed from Paris St Germain in January 2018, the 26-year-old has sealed his place in club folklore with a remarkable hat-trick that propelled Spurs to their first ever European Cup final.But Lucas semi-final heroics against Ajax did not prove enough for a starting berth in the Madrid finale, with Harry Kane favoured in attack despite a lengthy absence following injury.Lucas Moura celebrates after the final whistle of the Champions League semi-final, second leg match against Ajax in which he scored a hat-trick to secure Spurs place in the final (Adam Davy/PA Images).The Brazil international eventually came on in the 66th minute and was unable to prevent Spurs from succumbing to a 2-0 loss to Liverpool a case of what could have been for player and the club.Of course it was difficult because every player wants to play, Lucas said of the Champions League final. But it was even more to lose the game.I really think we could do better, could win this trophy. We had quality for this.I need to respect the decision of the coach and respect my team-mates, so no problem with this. I look forward now to next season to do a great season as well. Win a trophy, that is my objective.For sure he (Pochettino) has a good reason for this (decision) and I am sure that it was difficult for him as well to choose a player. He needs to choose only 11.I respect, I am a professional. No problem for this. Now I look forward to the next season.Lucas brushed aside a question about whether Pochettino had spoken to him about the decision and is clearly focused on the future.Lucas Moura (left) and manager Mauricio Pochettino celebrate after the final whistle of the Champions League semi-final in Amsterdam (Adam Davy/PA Images).I think I understand the way Mauricio wants us to play, he said in sweltering Singapore ahead of facing Juventus in the International Champions Cup. I feel very good now. I feel really at home with my team-mates and my club.I am very happy and I cant wait to start the new season, to do my best and have a great season like the last one. I think we are at another level. We reached the Champions League final.We got into the new stadium. People believe in us more now and it is time to confirm this, that we are a big team, a big club, with a great squad. We will see what will happen this season.Asked if Spurs are entering a new era now, he said: I think so, yes. I think it is a new era for us with the new stadium, with the Champions League final.I think we got more confidence and people believe more in us now.Moura believes it is a new era for Spurs following the move into the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.I think that its time to confirm this, its time to dream with a trophy. That is our objective now and we will do our best for this.Lucas was one of eight players to take part in an event at the AIAs Fan Zone outside Singapores National Stadium, where they helped an attempt to beat the countrys national record for the time it takes to pass the ball between 100 people.There were many hundreds more watching at an event that was manic at times in the intense humidity.I am so happy to be here in Singapore, Lucas added. Its my first time here. I am so impressed by the country its a very nice country, very nice people, great fans.We are doing a good job here, working hard. We need to enjoy this time on the pitch as well and of course outside to know a new country, new people, a new culture. That is very good for us.The challenge is training in conditions like this. Very hot. But it helps to improve ourselves, our shape. We are having a good time here.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Simon Peach, PA Chief Football Writer, Singapore.'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'a74fd527-cead-4ed6-9fd1-03ca7fc29885'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Moura using Champions League final disappointment to fuel bid for Spurs trophy'});

July 20th 2019, 5:37 am

Edu: Arsenal need to rediscover winning mentality

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Arsenals new technical director Edu wants everyone at the club to return to the winning mentality which made Arsene Wengers side invincible.The Gunners are preparing for a second campaign under new head coach Unai Emery, who guided them to the Europa League final but could not deliver Champions League football.Former Arsenal midfielder Edu has been appointed to the newly-created role, which the club said will see the Brazilian coordinate the work of our first-team coaching group, the academy and player scouting and recruitment in order to oversee the constant building up and efficient strengthening of our squad. Edu interviewOur first, extended chat with our new technical director Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) July 20, 2019The 41-year-old was part of Arsenals unbeaten Invincibles squad of 2004 which won the Premier League under Wenger, and later went on to play for Emery at Valencia.Edu left a similar role with the Brazil national side following their Copa America success and has now linked up with the Gunners again on the clubs pre-season tour in the United States.While he accepts it will not be an overnight change in mentality, it is a process Edu believes is vital if Arsenal are to compete for top honours once again, both at home and in Europe.Edu (left) played alongside former Arsenal captain Patrick Vieira (Nick Potts/PA)To work with a strong mentality, you dont do it like that (instantly). You build a good mentality, Edu said in an interview with Arsenal Media.When you talk about mentality, its not only the players. The club has to have the same mentality of the players.We have to have the same mentality, and the mentality of Arsenal, we always had to have winning in front of us. Thats football. Thats the real world. When youre talking about good jobs, doing other things, without results Im not sure (it works). Its unfair maybe, but the reality is like that. We have to fight very hard for results and we have to understand the real world, where you live and where you are right now. So we are at Arsenal, we are a big club and we have to understand the situation.Winning fight for winning, and how do you do that? We have to prepare ourselves. How? By working hard, by giving everything, giving us (a chance) to be better and better, and working really hard to be where the club wants to be.Edu recalled how Wengers squad would thrive off the continued quest for more success, which spread throughout the north London club.I remember we were winning a lot of things, our team was really strong and there were big names around, but the mentality of the group, the guys around, the staff, was so great, he said.We were working hard but at the same time, we were enjoying it. That was important because at the time winning was important, but you have to enjoy it as well and we did that with our group.Edu was part of Arsenals Invincibles side under former manager Arsene Wenger (Sean Dempsey/PA)Earlier this week, a group of Arsenal supporters organisations, fanzines and blogs published a statement hitting out at Stan Kroenkes passive ownership of the club.Edu said the Arsenal board have to understand the fans but believes that works both ways.They have to understand us as well. Because we have a philosophy. The club is changing a lot, so I saw that before I signed up for technical director, I saw the many changes now Arsene has left, the Brazilian added.The structure of the club changes a lot. So thats a process, and sometimes we need time. I understand that time is going against us but we have to be aware of that. But in the end, were going to give to [the fans] some good things I am sure.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'b33758bd-1c95-4d39-9d15-4d54f37a1b07'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Edu: Arsenal need to rediscover winning mentality'});

July 20th 2019, 5:17 am

German left-back sparks transfer tussle between Liverpool and Barcelona

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The Catalan club are on the hunt for a new left-back and Sport claims that Max is their top target, ahead of Wolfsburg’s Jerome Roussillon.However, the Champions League holders could provide stiff competition as they are already in talks with the Bundesliga outfit over a potential deal.Jurgen Klopp’s side are short of a back-up left-back after Alberto Moreno joined Villarreal on a free transfer this summer.Augsburg willdemand around €20 million for the 25-year-old, who provided four goals and four assists in 30 league games last season.Although Max is the main objective for Barca, the Camp Nou club are also following Roussillon and sent representatives to watch him regularly at the end of the 2018/19 campaign.The player has acknowledged interest from Catalonia as Barca look for a new arrival to compete with Jordi Alba.That hunt could still take them to the Premier League, as talks have taken place with Tottenham’s Danny Rose, although a new arrival from the Bundesliga looks more likely.Now read...TRANSFERSIs there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigatesSCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 20th 2019, 5:02 am

Christian Eriksen offered lucrative new deal as Tottenham look to ward off La Liga giants

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The Denmark international is in the final year of his deal with the Premier League side and has attracted interest from Real Madrid and Barcelona.Spurs are looking to lock down the playmaker with fresh terms that would mark a massive raise on his current deal, the Mail Online reports.Eriksen will be offered around £200,000 per week, a huge increase on his current £80,000 per week earnings.Tottenham have failed so far to convince the 27-year-old to commit his future to the club and previously proposed a deal that would’ve doubled his salary to around £160,000 per week.However, the player’s representatives have told the Spurs hierarchy that his next step won’t be motivated by money.Earlier this summer, Eriksen revealed in an interview that “I am at a place in my career where I might want to try something new.”The Dane joined Spurs from Ajax in August 2013 and helped the club reach the Champions League final last season.Now read...TRANSFERSIs there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigatesSCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 20th 2019, 4:48 am

Zlatan hits hat-trick as LA Galaxy come out on top in derby

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored a perfect hat-trick as LA Galaxy enjoyed a 3-2 derby victory against Western Conference rivals Los Angeles FC.The 37-year-old this week claimed to be the best player in Major League Soccer, and few can argue after this display.Major. League. Zlatan.This hat trick from @Ibra_official pic.twitter.com/9Ch4XtamvM LA Galaxy (@LAGalaxy) July 20, 2019Carlos Vela is the leagues top scorer and he opened the scoring from the penalty spot in the fourth minute.But Ibrahimovic equalised shortly afterwards with a stunning strike, controlling a long pass before lobbing the ball over the head of Eduard Atuesta and volleying the ball past goalkeeper Tyler Miller.True. #ElTrafico pic.twitter.com/cpjoVVP6VJ Major League Soccer (@MLS) July 20, 2019The Swede headed in a Diego Polenta cross after 56 minutes and rifled in a left-foot shot with 20 minutes to play to complete his treble.Former Arsenal striker Vela scored his second deep into stoppage time to take his tally for the season to 21, but Galaxy held on.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '8c5fd59f-2a0e-4033-bd72-18952f25d8da'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Zlatan hits hat-trick as LA Galaxy come out on top in derby'});

July 20th 2019, 3:18 am

Liverpool beaten by Dortmund in Indiana

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Liverpools pre-season preparations were dealt a blow after they were beaten 3-2 by Borussia Dortmund in the first match of their US tour.In stifling conditions at the Notre Dame Stadium in Indiana, the European champions faced the Bundesliga runners-up in what Reds boss Jurgen Klopp had called the first proper test of his sides pre-season programme.Missing Roberto Firmino, Alisson, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane due to the Copa America and Africa Cup of Nations, Liverpool fell behind after just three minutes through a close-range strike from Paco Alcacer. Stadionromantik. pic.twitter.com/2UA1hlIvar Borussia Dortmund (@BVB) July 20, 2019Harry Wilson drew Liverpool level after 35 minutes but Dortmund scored two quick-fire goals after the break.Thomas Delaney made it 2-1 eight minutes into the second half with a simple tap-in and Jacob Bruun Larsen extended their lead with a fine finish into the bottom corner in the 58th minute.Rhian Brewster scored from the penalty spot in the 75th minute after Ben Woodburn was brought down in the box but the Reds could not find an equaliser in the closing stages in front of a 40,361-strong crowd.An excessive heat warning didn't stop the best fans in the world from turning Notre Dame Stadium into Anfield for the night Thank you, Reds #LFCPreSeason pic.twitter.com/JYnf3JmtGu LFC USA (@LFCUSA) July 20, 2019Klopp named a number of youngsters in his starting line-up but handed Trent Alexander-Arnold, Jordan Henderson, Andy Robertson, Virgil Van Dijk and Georginio Wijnaldum their first match action after making 10 changes on the hour mark.He remained upbeat despite the defeat but blamed Dortmunds goals on a lack of organisation.When you change a lot in the team then its quite difficult to have the perfect organisation, he told Liverpools website. That will be better later in the pre-season and in the season of course, it has to and it will be. Apart from that, all good. There were a lot of good things, some things which I didnt like, thats normal in pre-season.Liverpool continue their pre-season tour with a game against LaLiga side Sevilla at Bostons Fenway Park on Sunday.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'a92d6533-969b-4f1c-a848-60bcf1444a8a'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Liverpool beaten by Dortmund in Indiana'});

July 20th 2019, 2:18 am

Algeria beat Senegal to win second Africa Cup of Nations title

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Algeria won the Africa Cup of Nations for only the second time in their history after an early fortuitous goal saw them beat Senegal 1-0 in Fridays final in Cairo.It took Algeria just two minutes to take the lead with a lucky deflection from Baghdad Bounedjahs strike finding the back of the net.Djamel Belmadis side then managed to hold off Senegal looking to win the competition for the first time for the remainder of the 90 minutes to add to their 1990 success on home soil.Algeria took a remarkable early lead when Bounedjah ran in from the left and hit a shot which struck Salif Sanes outstretched leg and looped high over goalkeeper Amigo Gomes before dropping into the goal.A few minutes later, Bounedjah had another chancewhen Senegal captain Cheikhou Kouyate missed the ball but the forward was unable to capitalise on the mistake.In an unsavoury moment which slightly marred the occasion, someone from the crowd directed a laser towards SenegalsHenri Saivet as the midfielder attempted to take a free-kickSaivet also had his sides best chance of the first half in the 29th minute direct from a free-kick, but his 30-yard effort was an easy save for goalkeeper Rais MBolhi.After dominating most of the possession in the opening period, Senegal came close to an equaliser after the ball fell to MBaye Niang who turned and struck a shot towards the top corner from 30 yards out, but it went just wide.In the second half, Liverpool star Sadio Mane had his first opportunity of the match and lost a boot in the process as he turned past a defender, but his shot was blocked.In a clash of few clear-cut chances, Senegal looked to have been presented with a perfect chance to draw level in the 60th minute when they were awarded a penalty after a cross hit Adlene Guediouras arm which was by the midfielders side. However, the referee overturned the decision following a VAR review.Algeria had their first good opening of the second half when Youcef Belailis cross was deflected and flew towards goal but the ball landed on the roof of the net.Another chance for Senegal came in the 83rd minute, after a defended free-kick fell to Ismaila Sarr who let the ball bounce before firing a shot over the bar.Substitute Krepin Diatta wasted one of his sides last opportunities to equalise when he decided to shoot instead of crossing for the numbers in green gathered in the box, and his effort went high over the bar.With 30 seconds of stoppage time remaining, Senegals Sane stood up to take a free-kick, but his effort went straight into the wall and Algerias celebrations were able to begin.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '07db635e-c0fa-4645-a9a7-e84f101db0f1'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Algeria beat Senegal to win second Africa Cup of Nations title'});

July 19th 2019, 6:12 pm

Robinson hails Scott’s potential after double in cup win over Morton

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Motherwell manager Stephen Robinson claimed James Scott had the potential to become a complete centre-forward after the teenager scored twice in a 4-0 win over Morton.The 18-year-old netted in each half, hit the bar and came close on several other occasions as Motherwell took control of their Betfred Cup group.Robinson said: If he continues to improve and keeps adding goals to his game, hes got everything for a number nine.He is 18 years of age, he needs to learn to use his body better which he will do and we will help him with that, but hes got everything.He needs to keep his feet on the ground, learn when to do his tricks, when not to, and get shots away. Hes got a chance.Robinson felt his sides defending was sloppy at times in the first half but he was generally encouraged by is new-look team. Sherwin Seedorf and Jermaine Hylton impressed on the wings with the latter netting the third before Liam Donnelly rounded off the scoring.There were lots of good performances, lots of very exciting play, Robinson said.Jermaine and Sherwin, I dont think both are as fit as they can be, coming up from England where they have a longer break. Christian (Ilic) was exciting when he came on but all three of them need to get fitter. Jake Carroll the same.The ones that probably wont get the credit, Declan (Gallagher) and Liam Polworth, were also good so the new signings have done OK and theres a lot more to come from them.Morton boss David Hopkin rued the loss of Brian McLean to a groin injury with his side one down.We lost Brian McLean just after half-time and it was tough putting a midfielder back into centre-half, Hopkin said. When you lose an experienced centre-back against a team like that, its going to be difficult.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Gavin McCafferty, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '0e768dda-829d-45ca-ac67-f54b0f8f48e0'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Robinson hails Scott\u2019s potential after double in cup win over Morton'});

July 19th 2019, 5:42 pm

Guardiola admits Manchester City are on the lookout for a new centre-back

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Pep Guardiola has confirmed Manchester City are in the market for a new centre-back.The Premier League champions are hoping to find a replacement for Vincent Kompany, who left the club after last seasons treble success.But although City have been linked heavily with a big-money move for Leicesters Harry Maguire, Guardiola insists it is not vital a signing is made.Guardiola refused to be drawn on links to Harry Maguire (Andy Hampson/PA)We will see, the Spaniard said. We are looking for some names but at the same time we have three centre-backs who can play there and we have two young players in the second team who can help us.We shall see if the market is possible and the club believes we can spend that money, but if they dont, we shant spend it.Guardiola, who was speaking during Citys pre-season trip to China, was not willing to discuss whether Maguire was a target.He said: He is a Leicester player. I know some people like Bayern Munich like to talk a lot about Leroy (Sane), but usually I never speak about players at other clubs. What is going to happen, is going to happen.Guardiola will allow the players to choose Kompanys replacement as captain (Martin Rickett/PA)One position City definitely need to find a replacement for Kompany for is that of captain.Guardiola has said he will let the players choose who takes the armband because it is too important a decision for him.He said: All these things about leadership, picking this one or that one. It will happen naturally.Im not going to say, Now it is your turn, then it is your turn. Its going to come naturally. You will see who has the attitude to be captain, they will do it together. Its never a decision I will make.The captain has to handle the locker room, not me. If there are problems with me, the captain represents their decisions. They have to pick their captain. The captain is the players spokesperson to me and to the club. Its not my decision, thats far more important than me. I will not give them a shortlist.Guardiola admits the departure of Kompany, who has taken up a post as player manager at Anderlecht, will leave a void.He said: Vincent was an incredibly important player on and off the pitch. When he was fit, he was always ready on the pitch.He was a very important player, he made decisions for the team. He is still an incredible player. Im looking forward to seeing him on the touchline and seeing how Anderlecht play with him.Leroy Sane continues to be linked with a move away from City (Steven Paston/PA)Winger Sane continues to be linked with a return to Germany with Bayern and Guardiola, asked about the situation a number of times in China this week, maintains he wants to keep the player.He said: Hopefully he can stay this season and another one and another one. Thats why we offered him a new contract more than one year ago. He has special qualities.But it is his decision. We are giving everything but, in the end, if he doesnt want, what can you do? Nothing.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Hampson, PA, Shanghai'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'd510fc3d-5369-4821-8344-8208fd92f560'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Guardiola admits Manchester City are on the lookout for a new centre-back'});

July 19th 2019, 5:42 pm

Bringing star loanees back to Derby will be ‘very difficult’ – Cocu

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Derby boss Phillip Cocu believes it will be very difficult to bring Harry Wilson, Mason Mount or Fikayo Tomori back to Pride Park.The three young loan players were pivotal last season as the Rams narrowly missed out on promotion after defeat in the Championship play-off final at Wembley, with defender Tomori being named player of the year.PA understands Derby have contacted Liverpool about Wilsons availability after the attacker ended the 2018/19 campaign as top scorer with 18 goals.The 22-year-old Wales international has featured for Liverpool in friendlies against Tranmere and Bradford recently and he has been included in the Reds squad that has travelled to America for a week-long tour.It remains to be seen whether he will feature in Jurgen Klopps plans but Derby are understood to have asked to be considered should Liverpool decide to loan out Wilson again.If you look at the value of those players to the team last season, it was very big. But it will be very difficult, I think. I wont say impossible, but it will be hard, said Cocu.We are still working to strengthen the team and there are a lot of possibilities still. I dont want to name any names yet, but we are trying to get some players in.Former Derby boss Frank Lampard was pivotal in Tomori and Mount, who has recently signed a new long-term contract at Chelsea and looks to be pushing for involvement in the first team under Lampard at Stamford Bridge, arriving at Pride Park. His strong Chelsea connections paved the way for their loan deals.Cocu has strong ties with his former club PSV Eindhoven, having played for them twice and won three Eredivisie titles as manager, but he insists he will not be going down that route to recruit players.I dont think I will do that, no, he said. The league in Holland is different and the style of play is different. Would it be good for this player to play in this physical league thats high tempo? You have to consider more than if it is a good player, he has to fit the league you play in. There are some players I really like but they would be expensive and sold for big amounts.The 48-year-old does plan on using other contacts he has, however.Always you use these in football agents, technical directors or other managers. Whether it is from my time in Holland or at Barcelona.But I am not going to tell if I have spoken to someone or not, just yet. We are working hard on players but other clubs have not come to a decision on their players or on their squads yet.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Sean Taylor, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '13f5984f-1cfe-4410-b94f-656abb747555'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Bringing star loanees back to Derby will be \u2018very difficult\u2019 \u2013 Cocu'});

July 19th 2019, 5:42 pm

Scott’s double helps power Motherwell to impressive win

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James Scott hit a double as Motherwell took control of Betfred Cup Group E with a 4-0 victory over Morton.The teenage striker scored in each half before Jermaine Hylton and Liam Donnelly both notched their second goals of the season.Scott was supported with an impressive new-look trio behind him. Sherwin Seedorf and Hylton caused all sorts of problems on the wings after coming off the bench to net in Saturdays 3-0 win over Queen of the South, and Liam Polworth was involved in both of Scotts goals as he filled the void created by David Turnbulls knee surgery.Former Motherwell striker John Sutton sent a free header wide in the early stages but the hosts soon got a grip of proceedings.Scott forced a save and then diverted Jake Carrols strike on to the bar before Seedorf drew a double save from Sam Ramsbottom.The pair combined to give Motherwell the lead in the 22nd minute after Polworth sent Seedorf clear. The former Wolves player beat a man and the goalkeeper and Scott made sure his shot found the net from close range.Scott had a good chance to double the lead after another Polworth through ball but he hesitated and the chance was lost.The visitors came back into it and Aidan Nesbitt had two efforts saved just before the interval but Scott got Motherwell going again with a 30-yard strike which Ramsbottom tipped over.Seedorf and Hyltyon came close before Scott shot high into the net after Polworths cutback in the 66th minute.Hylton made it three with a measured finish from 18 yards six minutes later before Donnelly drilled home in the 82nd minute after Scotts effort was blocked.Substitute Christian Ilic had a shot cleared off the line as Motherwell continued to threaten.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Gavin McCafferty, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '7a71edbc-e689-4789-902c-3c646646b64e'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Scott\u2019s double helps power Motherwell to impressive win'});

July 19th 2019, 5:12 pm

Strachan determined to give Dundee’s youngsters best chance of success

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Gordon Strachan says he has returned to Dundee to try to offer the clubs youngsters the same opportunities he enjoyed on his way to the top.The former Celtic and Scotland boss is back at Dens Park 42 years after leaving the club where he started his playing career, having been appointed the Dark Blues new technical director.He was lured away from Tayside in 1977 as he went on to enjoy a trophy-laden spell with Sir Alex Fergusons famed Aberdeen side before winning further honours down south with Manchester United and Leeds.His move into management saw him lead Coventry, Southampton, Celtic and Middlesbrough before taking over the Hampden hotseat.However, since being axed as national team boss two years ago, Strachan has spent his time travelling the globe and studying some of the worlds top youth academies.That has allowed the 62-year-old to draw up a manifesto setting out his vision for how to raise the next generation of Scottish stars, with Dens chief John Nelms now giving him the go-ahead to implement it at Dundee.And Strachan hopes the move will open doors for the clubs latest batch of hopefuls.Strachan said: When I left Dundee at the time I thought, if I can stay in the game until Im about 32, then when Im 33 maybe open a sports shop in St Andrews or a fish and chip shop in Arbroath, that would be magnificent.But because of who I played for and the players I played with, Ive ended up coming back here 42 years later having had an incredible and fun life.All I want to do now is give players and families that kind of satisfaction and the kind of excitement that Ive had.The memories and the games are do fantastic and I just hope we can set players up for that path.Ive been a grandfather with grandchildren in academies and also a father with sons in them too, so I know how stressful it can be.Ive coached at youth level while I was at Leeds and took the reserves at Coventry, so Ive been right through the whole gambit, all the way to working in the Champions League with some magnificent players.Ive know what it takes to be a Scott Brown, a Shunsuke Nakamura, a Neil Lennon. I know what you have to sacrifice to be a Robbie Keane or a Gary McAllister.There is no shortcut to becoming a top player. Its really down to hard work.James McPake has been tasked with leading Dundee back to the top flight after last years Ladbrokes Premiership relegation.But Strachan insists his new job will not be to interfere where he is not wanted.James has got to be his own man, but Im here for anybody who asks for my help, he explained.Hopefully James wont have any problems that he needs to ask for help but I will be here if he needs me.It would be stupid for me and the club not to use that knowledge Ive gained as most of the problems come round again and again.But Ill be in the background. There will be games where Im not even here Ill have better things to do and Ill not be in the dressing room. But if James needs to speak to me afterwards then Ill be there for him.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Newport, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '68006bc2-35f9-49ff-bee0-eae459e36770'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Strachan determined to give Dundee\u2019s youngsters best chance of success'});

July 19th 2019, 1:10 pm

Vela signing will be last of the summer, says Hibs boss Heckingbottom

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Hibernian head coach Paul Heckingbottom has declared his summer transfer business complete.Former Bolton midfielder Josh Vela became Heckingbottoms seventh summer signing this week and the Hibs boss says he will be the last.The former Leeds and Barnsley manager had been working to bring back Marc McNulty and Stephane Omeonga after successful loan spells last season, but a deal for the former proved too expensive and Hibs appear to have given up on their pursuit of the Belgian.Thats it, we are done, Heckingbottom said. Unless circumstances change or something unforeseen happens which we have got to react to, that will be it.Its been a big change 11 out and seven in. Its going to take time but we are well on our way.We need them to settle down as a group and really understand each other and their roles in the team. You can only do that with games, so Im glad the competitive games have started.Vela arrived after deciding to leave England following 17 years with Bolton.Josh, we had been speaking to for a while, Heckingbottom said. He was waiting on an offer from a Championship team who wanted him and got sick of waiting. He knew how keen we were.It was a case of, Im not hanging about, I want to sign for Hibs. Perfect, thats the type of player we want. We were delighted and it happened really quick.Those negotiations were in contrast to Heckingbottoms experience of trying to sign Funso Ojo. Both Aberdeen and Hibs had bids for the midfielder accepted by Scunthorpe but the player signed for the Dons at the weekend.But Heckingbottom claimed Hibs had pulled out of the contest.We thought it was gone, he came back when Aberdeen had a bid agreed, we matched that, he said.But then the player started messing us about a bit, so it was a case of, No, we dont want you.You cant be dead set on coming somewhere, the only club for you, and all of a sudden its not. So as soon as we got those vibes it was time to pull the plug.We want people who want to come here and as soon as you get the vibe they are not, good luck, we are not interested in that.Hibs have Florian Kamberi and Martin Boyle back in their squad for Saturdays Betfred Cup clash with Alloa at Easter Road.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '6150463f-a22e-4e04-a5b7-41caf71070c5'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Vela signing will be last of the summer, says Hibs boss Heckingbottom'});

July 19th 2019, 12:40 pm

‘A disgrace’ – Dicker slates Kilmarnock’s ’embarrassing’ Europe League exit

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Kilmarnock captain Gary Dicker has described as a disgrace following up a record-breaking season with the clubs worst performance of all time.Killie crashed out of the Europa League qualifiers at the first hurdle after letting slip a first-leg lead with a 2-0 home defeat by Connahs Quay Nomads.Steve Clarke led the team to record top-flight points tallies in each of the last two seasons but the Scotland managers successor, Italian Angelo Alessio, endured a nightmare Rugby Park debut as Killie conceded two second-half goals.Dicker claims the result, in the first European game at Rugby Park for 18 years, has to be the worst in the clubs 150-year history.Its got to be, said the midfielder. We have got to take the blame for it. We got the plaudits last year, record-breakers but we are breaking the wrong records this year.Its just not good enough. As players its embarrassing. The fans have waited that long to get here and we dish up that. Im gutted for them more than anyone. They have been through enough over the years.We have worked that hard, and then to dish that up, its embarrassing, a disgrace, whatever you want to call it.The Irishman felt they failed to apply the basics against the Welsh part-timers.I dont think complacency is the word, the 32-year-old said. It was just not doing what we are good at, what got us here hard work and graft and helping each other out. The minute we think we are better than that, we are in trouble.Were getting used to playing a different way but we have still got to manage the game as players. We will take full responsibility for it. I will, Im sure the rest of the lads will.Im not going to sugar-coat it or say its early on, its just not good enough as a group and a club. We embarrassed ourselves and our fans to be honest with you. Its hard to take.We are going to get hammered for probably the worst performance in the clubs history and we deserve to get hammered for it.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'f65e48e5-7368-4942-aa14-8f4d07713374'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': '\u2018A disgrace\u2019 \u2013 Dicker slates Kilmarnock\u2019s \u2019embarrassing\u2019 Europe League exit'});

July 19th 2019, 12:09 pm

Manchester United set for crunch Paulo Dybala talks with Juventus

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Gazzetta dello Sport reports that the Old Trafford club have revived their long-standing interest in the Argentina international.A face-to-face meeting is set to take place between the two clubs, at which the possibility of a concrete bid will be discussed.However, Dybala wants to stay in Turin for the start of the Maurizio Sarri era and is ready to refuse moves elsewhere.The 25-year-old struggled for form and regular game time last season following Cristiano Ronaldo’s arrival, but Sarri intends to use him in a new false nine role for the 2019/20 campaign.Dybala started 24 matches in Serie A for Juventus last term– the fewest amount in his four seasons at the club.Now read...QUIZ!Can you name Liverpool's last 50 signings?SCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 19th 2019, 12:09 pm

Paton hoping summer training in Canada and brotherly love drive him on

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Harry Paton hopes his summer family training regime can help his push for a first-team place at Ross County.The 21-year-old impressed in Countys 4-0 Betfred Cup win at Brechin on Tuesday after forcing his way into the starting line-up.The midfielder hopes the extra effort of spending most of his summer holiday training with his two younger brothers at their family home in Canada can give him a head start this season.The former Fulham and Hearts trainee told PA: I took a week or two off just to completely rest but I went right back into it and was training after that.I have two brothers back home and we were all pushing each other and working hard over the summer to be fit for the new season.My brother is at Blackburn Rovers, he is 18 and in the under-23s there, so we were pushing each other to be better than the other. Its good to have that.Me and Ben are always pushing each other and going the extra mile, always checking Twitter to see if he scored that week.We have always been like that, on the pitch taking free-kicks, and I have a wee younger brother as well who could maybe come over some day and give it a go. Its good to have that group training with each other.My youngest one is 14 now, Landon, so he has a few years to improve. He loves it and is always asking to get me out, always going out for runs.Theres a wee field right by our house so we are always out there knocking balls about and doing technical drills.Paton made seven first-team appearances last season for County as well as having a second loan spell at Stenhousemuir and is eager to build on Tuesdays display.I really enjoyed it, he said ahead of Sundays trip to face St Johnstone. When you get your chance you need to perform and I felt I did well on Tuesday. You can always improve though.The managers are always giving me pointers for my game and I am always listening to them and working on my game.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Gavin McCafferty, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '3239540a-44c0-43f3-8e29-7fb8847c6fc1'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Paton hoping summer training in Canada and brotherly love drive him on'});

July 19th 2019, 12:09 pm

Liverpool and Manchester City ‘make enquiries’ for Turkish goalkeeper

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According to Goal.com, the two Premier League giants are monitoring the 19-year-old’s situation with his club, who are yet to hand him any action in the Super Lig.Ozer is considered as a huge prospect back home, however, and was called up to Fatih Terim’s Turkey squad shortly after his 17th birthday in 2017. He has since been called upon again, although is yet to win a cap.It is believed that the teenager would not be considered for either Premier League club’s first team in the near future, and instead be loaned out for first-team experience.Goal report that Liverpool, City and Basel all tried to sign Ozer before he joined Fenerbahce in 2018, but the youngster believed his chances to be greater in Turkey.Liverpool’s immediate goalkeeping situation is unclear as Simon Mignolet seeks an Anfield exit this summer.NOW READ...QUIZ! Can you name Liverpool's last 50 signings?FEATURE Is there any point of handing in a transfer request? FourFourTwo investigates

July 19th 2019, 11:06 am

England’s Euro 2020 qualifier against Bulgaria to be played in front of reduced crowd

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England are set to play their 2020 European Championships qualifying match against Bulgaria in front of a reduced crowd.Bulgaria have been hit with a partial stadium closure by UEFA after their supporters were found guilty of racist behaviour in their matches against Kosovo and the Czech Republic last month.The Bulgarian FA will be required to block off 5,000 seats for the visit of Gareth Southgates side to theVasil Levski National Stadium on October 14. The arena has a capacity of 46,340.The area of vacant seating will display a banner with the wording #EqualGame.Montenegro were forced by UEFA to play a match behind closed doors after England players were subjected to racism in March.England will head to Sofia for their next match at the top of Group A following two victories from their opening matches.Bulgaria are rooted to the foot of the table having failed to win any of their four fixtures.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'b3cfa973-96af-45ce-9ba8-8c63064cf27a'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'England\u2019s Euro 2020 qualifier against Bulgaria to be played in front of reduced crowd'});

July 19th 2019, 11:06 am

New Derby boss Phillip Cocu determined to be his own man

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Phillip Cocu insists he is not out to emulate Frank Lampard and will be his own man at Derby.The former PSV Eindhoven manager was appointed as Lampards successor following his departure to Chelsea earlier this month.Lampards debut campaign at Pride Park ended in a play-off final defeat to Aston Villa.Of course I can imagine that the fans are sad Frank has gone because he did a great job, was a fantastic player and had a great career, said Cocu on his official unveiling as Derby boss.But I am not a person who is going to try and do the same as the old manager. You have to be yourself.What I like is the relationship between the club and the fans. The bond is very close and that is important.You have to show you are proud to work and play for the club and we want to see that on the pitch.Cocu represented PSV Eindhoven and Barcelona and was capped 101 times by Holland during a glittering career.But the 48-year-olds move to Derby signals his first period as a manager or player in England.Cocu won three league championships and a Dutch Cup during his time in charge of PSV. He also oversaw the clubs progress to the knockout stages of the Champions League.His latest managerial role at Fenerbahce lasted only 15 matches after he was sacked in October 2018 having won just three matches.Cocu, who on Friday targeted a top-six finish in the Championship, added: I am very happy to be here. This is the right step in my career and the right fit for me.I know that in the world of football you have to bring performance and it doesnt matter if you are a manager in the Premier League, or La Liga, football is wider than that.Derby are interested in the academy, and they have built something that I want to continue as a core value.It will be tough because a lot of teams have potential to be in the top six. But it is also good that things will not come easy. They never do in football.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '31d9b7e5-5819-4ed0-838c-e56253e0f984'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'New Derby boss Phillip Cocu determined to be his own man'});

July 19th 2019, 10:54 am

Aden Flint joins Cardiff from Middlesbrough

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Cardiff have announced the signing of defender Aden Flint from Sky Bet Championship rivals Middlesbrough for an undisclosed fee.The 30-year-old, who joined Boro in a 7million deal from Bristol City last summer, was understood to be heading for south Wales on Thursday for a medical and to finalise a transfer which could be worth as much as 6million to the Teessiders.And the Bluebirds on Friday confirmed the deal for Flint, who made 42 appearances for Boro last season as they finished a point outside the play-off positions.Im excited to be here and thankful for the opportunity. It came about really quick, Flint told the clubs official website.Everyone wants to play in the Premier League and thats why Ive joined. Hopefully we can get the right results, get promoted again, and have another opportunity to do that.Im looking forward to getting going. I cant wait for the first match.Cardiff also revealed that Bruno Ecuele Manga has left to join Dijon for an undisclosed fee after five years at the club, while Kenneth Zohore completed his move to West Brom.Thank you to the manager, the owner and the board for giving me the opportunity to play for you, and the brilliant players and staff that helped me along the way, Ecuele Manga wrote in an open letter.I have made some great friends and will be sorry to say goodbye.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'b30b0b4c-e7bd-4de3-9edb-844b8a812b9f'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Aden Flint joins Cardiff from Middlesbrough'});

July 19th 2019, 10:54 am

Hamilton striker George Oakley stunned to see veteran Kenny Miller still playing

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Hamilton striker George Oakley admits he is stunned to see Kenny Miller still kicking a ball for a living at the age of 39.Accies hitman Oakely has fond memories of watching the evergreen former Scotland, Rangers and Celtic ace as a teenager but thought he would have hung his boots up by now.However, Miller is still going strong and Oakley will now get the chance to see how he operates up close when Brian Rices side welcome the ex-Wolves, Derby and Cardiff forward and his new Partick Thistle side to the FOYS Stadium for Saturdays Betfred Cup clash.And Oakley, 23, reckons the experience of watching how the savvy veteran makes room for himself will be the perfect lesson in how to defy the ageing process.The former AFC Wimbledon and Inverness frontman told PA: I was watching Kenny Miller play when I was 13 or 14 and it seemed like he was already at the veteran stage back then.I remember him from his Rangers days and also playing for Wolves down in England so I cant believe hes still going all these years later.But credit to him. Hes 39 and still going strong. Touch wood hopefully Im still playing when Im 39 too.Hes still a good forward despite his age. You dont lose that ability overnight and hes got that intelligence to his game that has allowed him to carry on for so long.As you get older, everyone knows you might lose that bit of pace but if youre mentally sharp that is as good as a couple of yards and Kenny obviously has that.It will be a good experience to play against someone like him because he is vastly experienced himself with all hes done in his career. I can still learn from watching how he operates so Im looking forward to seeing him up close.Thistle are two points ahead of Accies after two Group F fixtures and this weekends showdown could decide which team claims an automatic qualification slot for the knock-out stages.Oakley added: I dont know too much about Partick. I know theyre a big club in Scotland and probably shouldnt have finished where they did last year.But it can be heard to rebuild after being relegated.Looking at some of the names they have got though, it looks like they should do better this year so it should be a good test for us on Saturday.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Newport, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'f281abbd-09d2-4b70-b817-ebe141c3f47b'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Hamilton striker George Oakley stunned to see veteran Kenny Miller still playing'});

July 19th 2019, 10:54 am

Sporting CP form plan to keep Bruno Fernandes after losing patience with Manchester United

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The Old Trafford club have been heavily linked with a move for the Portugal international this summer but are yet to formalise their interest.Portuguese outlet Correio de Manha has reported that Sporting CP president Frederico Varandas is prepared to sell four players - Wendel, Raphinha, Marcos Acuna and Bas Dost – to raise funds if Fernandes stays put.The Lisbon outfit want €70 million for the midfielder but are yet to receive a bid from Manchester and the outlet believes that the Premier League side are unlikely to meet the valuation.Varandas believes he can raise around €100 million from selling the quartet while also saving on salaries, but even bringing in just €40-50 million would ensure they would be under no pressure to let Fernandes go.O Jogois more optimistic about a formal offer from United coming in before the end of the weekendNow read...QUIZ!Can you name Liverpool's last 50 signings?SCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 19th 2019, 10:54 am

Three Premier League clubs interested in Real Sociedad defender Diego Llorente

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The 25-year-old joined the La Liga side from Real Madrid two years ago and has a €50 million release clause written into his contract.El Mundo Deportivo believes that a host of English sides are monitoring the centre-back, although no formal bid has been received yet.Fulham (!) and Spurs both sent representatives to watch him play in November, according to the report,following Liverpool and West Ham who had previously scouted the Spain international.The outlet believes that bids of around €25 million could arrive from English shores, while Real Madrid have the option to buy him back for that price due to a clause in his contract.The four-cap Llorente has designs on a place in Spain's Euro 2020 squad, having made his debut in 2016, and featured 21 times in La Liga across an injury-hit2018/19 campaign.Now read...QUIZ! Can you name Liverpool's last 50 signings?SCREAMERS10 incredible goals wasted in meaningless friendlies

July 19th 2019, 10:09 am

United boss Solskjaer demands a flying start to new season

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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer knows Manchester United need to hit the ground running if next season is to be a success.A poor start to the 2018-19 campaign resulted in Jose Mourinhos men falling behind the pack, leading to the Old Trafford hierarchy eventually wielding the axe in mid-December.Solskjaer then oversaw a remarkable upturn in fortunes when brought in as caretaker manager but things went awry after his permanent appointment and United stumbled home in sixth.Nothing but work #MUFC #MUTOUR #ICC2019 pic.twitter.com/dMeujooSzu Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 19, 2019The gap to relegated Cardiff in 18th was the same to champions Manchester City at the end of the season, and Solskjaer knows his side need to start as they mean to go.Of course the transfer window will close when the league starts, the United boss said.The start of the season is important, thats why weve worked them hard.I dont think many of the players have had a pre-season like this before in the last two or three years because there have been championships. Its their first pre-season for a little while."So far, we've had loads of encouraging moments," Ole says. "Tomorrow night will be another stepping stone, against more difficult opposition." #MUFC #MUTOUR #ICC2019 Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 19, 2019So, for us, in the first eight to 10 games you dont win anything but you can definitely lose the chance to win things. The first two months is vital for us.Getting players in as soon as possible will also play an important role.So far, Swansea flyer Daniel James and Crystal Palace right-back Aaron Wan-Bissaka have been the only additions, with the club keen to still at least bring in a ball-playing centre-back and central midfielder.Daniel James is one of only two new faces signed by Solskjaer so far this summer. (Simon Peach/PA)Asked for a transfer update by PA, Solskjaer said: As Ive said a few times, were working on one or two cases but my objective here now is weve got to get ready for the games and training sessions.And if Ive got to travel somewhere, I will, and you wont be able to ask me.Solskjaer was speaking at Singapores National Stadium, where United will continue pre-season preparations against Inter Milan on Saturday in the International Champions Cup. | CONFERENCE#Conte: "Tomorrow, we have an important match. At this level, it's difficult to see it as just a friendly and it will also be the same for them. Our pre-season is going well, I hope to see improvements in my team."#ManUtdInter #ICC2019 pic.twitter.com/zpTlx7bAFz Inter (@Inter_en) July 19, 2019Romelu Lukaku, a key transfer target for the Serie A side, will miss his third straight friendly with an unspecified knock.Addressing the issue, Solskjaer said:Hes not fit so he wont be available.As to whether he expects Lukaku to be at the club next month, the Norwegian added:I dont have any updates from the last time I spoke to you. So yeah, I do.Lukaku watched training from the sidelines in Singapore, where Fred and Matteo Darmian trained with the group after being allowed to miss the Australia leg of the tour for personal reasons.Lukaku was again a spectator during training ahead of Uniteds pre-season friendly with Inter Milan in Singapore. (Martin Rickett/PA)Today we are going to have to see where theyre at because theyve been training back home, he said.Freds been over in Brazil, had his wedding, got married so he has probably got loads of energy and Im sure he is keen to join in.Solskjaer expects David De Gea and Luke Shaw to be available to face Inter after illness and a hamstring issue respectively.Including updates on @D_DeGea, @LukeShaw23 and @RomeluLukaku9#MUFC #MUTOUR #ICC2019 Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 19, 2019TheUnited boss, meanwhile, has thrown his support behind Anthony Martial ahead of the new campaign.Solskjaer is confident the 36million capture from Monaco four years ago can enjoy potentially his best season with the club after witnessing his form so far in pre-season.Anthony can be a world-class forward and I think if you followed Anthony in the last few seasons the way hes come back to pre-season now, his attitude is absolutely spot on, he said.The boss has been impressed by @AnthonyMartial's attitude and aptitude in pre-season so far #MUFC #MUTOUR #ICC2019 Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 19, 2019Theres been a couple of instances where you can see a new Anthony in the way that he works for the team.He has always got the quality, talent, hes going to score goals and his work rate is improving. I expect him and Marcus to be even better than last season.Anthony had a top season when he came, his first season top scorer, then hes had a couple of seasons where hes not hit that amount of goals and quality so Im sure we will see a better Anthony this year.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Simon Peach, PA Chief Football Writer, Singapore'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'f1484813-69b4-49af-bac0-e4089119407d'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'United boss Solskjaer demands a flying start to new season'});

July 19th 2019, 10:09 am

Nuno hails impact of China trip on Wolves’ profile

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Nuno Espirito Santo believes Wolves pre-season trip to China has given the clubs profile a huge boost.Wolves Chinese owners, Fosun, have made a strong marketing push around their teams involvement in this weeks Premier League Asia Trophy.The club have opened a new megastore in Shanghai, launched a clothing range at a well-attended fashion show and promoted Wolves-themed beer.On the field, Wolves beat Newcastle in Nanjing on Wednesday and will play in Saturdays final against Premier League champions Manchester City in Shanghai.Yes, its definitely (been a success), said manager Nuno, who guided Wolves to seventh in their first season back in the Premier League last term. We knew one of the goals of our trip to the Asia Trophy was that.Were delighted to be here and the players are being very patient and co-operative.Its difficult, with the weather and all these things, but we are really happy to be here. All the events made by the club, the way they appreciate us, the way we go on the street and people share their happiness, its good.Captain Conor Coady has also enjoyed his time in China.The 26-year-old said: Its been a amazing the football side of it and the events off the pitch have been fantastic for us.The way the people have taken to Wolves and taken us in and shown their support has been fantastic.We remember where we were three or four years ago. To be where we are now, we need to make the most of it and make sure we keep on improving.Wolves now know they will face Crusaders of Northern Ireland in their eagerly anticipated Europa League qualifier next week, but Nuno wants to get Saturdays game out out of the way before planning for that.First we have the game of tomorrow and then we are going to think about Crusaders, he said.Nuno feels the City game will be useful for their preparations.He said: Its a final but its a preparation game. Our interpretation is to compete and prepare ourselves for whats coming next week.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Hampson, PA, Shanghai'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '08620c07-ce5c-473c-a314-35ac723133f3'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Nuno hails impact of China trip on Wolves\u2019 profile'});

July 19th 2019, 10:09 am

Villas-Boas makes first signing as Marseille head coach

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Andre Villas-Boas has made his first signing as Marseilles head coach with a season-long loan deal for Villarreal defender Alvaro Gonzalez Soberon.Although the former Tottenham manager was appointed almost three months ago by the French Ligue 1 club, the Portuguese has bided his time before making a move in the transfer market.Marseille have an option to purchase Soberon, an experienced defender, with more than 230 La Liga appearances to his name.A Marseille statement said: European champion with the Spanish U21 team in 2013, Alvaro Gonzalez is a defensive leader, with a good reading of the game and a solid ability to play in duels.His longevity in the Spanish elite against high-level opponents makes him a complete defender.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'a0cb2c1b-d733-4636-a6c4-c6643b2c4cd7'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Villas-Boas makes first signing as Marseille head coach'});

July 19th 2019, 10:09 am

West Brom complete deal to take Zohore from Cardiff

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West Brom have announced the signing of Kenneth Zohore from Cardiff for an undisclosed fee.The 25-year-old Danish striker, who is reported to have cost around8million, has agreed a four-year contract at the Hawthorns.Zohore, who scored one goal in 19 Premier League appearances for Cardiff last season, replaces Jay Rodriguez following his move to Burnley.The news also follows the announcement that Salomon Rondon, who spent the 2018-19 campaign on loan at Newcastle, has joined Chinese club Dalian Yifang for an undisclosed fee.He is a player who has got more than a bit of everything, said Baggies boss Slaven Bilic of his new signing.Hes strong, he has pace, he has good skill. He knows the league, he knows the country, hes already got good experience, but hes still got room to improve. Hes not the finished article.Zohore made his professional debut for Copenhagen aged 16 and also counts Fiorentina, Brondby and Odense among his former clubs, although he did not make a senior appearance for the Serie A outfit.Zohore joined Cardiff in the 2016 January transfer window initially on loan from another of owner Vincent Tans clubs, KV Kortrijk and went on to score 24 goals in 101 appearances during his time in south Wales.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '803e5d22-58d6-4d0a-a147-58323bef428b'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'West Brom complete deal to take Zohore from Cardiff'});

July 19th 2019, 9:05 am

Pulisic makes Chelsea debut in defeat by Kawasaki Frontale

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Brazilian striker Damiao headed Chelsea to a 1-0 defeat in Japan as J League side Kawasaki Frontale claimed a famous pre-season scalp.The substitutes late effort in Yokohama settled a game into which Frank Lampards men had gradually grown, but the Premier League outfit, who handed a debut to Christian Pulisic as a second-half replacement, could not make the breakthrough.A Chelsea starting line-up which included Willy Caballero, Mason Mount, Kenedy and Michy Batshuayi, struggled to break the hosts down with Pedro forcing an early save and sending another shot just over the bar before Kenedy blasted just wide from distance.However, Caballero had to make a late save to deny the J League champions a half-time lead.Lampard made changes at the break with Davide Zappacosta, Andreas Christensen, Emerson, Ross Barkley and Olivier Giroud replacing Cesar Azpilicueta, Kurt Zouma, Marcos Alonso, Pedro and Batshuayi, but it was Mount who came close to opening the scoring with a curling effort within three minutes of the restart.Giroud was denied by a solid save from a 75th-minute free-kick, but Damiao, who had earlier sent a diving effort just wide, headed the home side in front with two minutes remaining and his contribution proved decisive.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '8c3dc359-117d-4877-b5eb-51e978f438e0'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Pulisic makes Chelsea debut in defeat by Kawasaki Frontale'});

July 19th 2019, 9:05 am

Manchester City boss Guardiola happy with defensive options

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Pep Guardiola claims it is not vital Manchester City sign a new centre-back before the start of their latest Premier League title defence.The back-to-back champions have a central defender less following the departure of Vincent Kompany at the end of last season.City have been linked with Leicesters Harry Maguire but, even if a new face does not arrive, Guardiola feels he is well covered in the position with Aymeric Laporte, John Stones and Nicolas Otamendi.Vincent Kompany said goodbye to Manchester City at the end of last season (Nick Potts/PA)The City boss said: We are so happy with the squad we have. I dont know if the players here will stay or new players will come, but I am delighted with the players we have.Maybe (we will buy) but we have three incredible central defenders and Fernandinho can play in that position. We will see.One player continually linked with a move away from City is winger Leroy Sane, with Bayern Munich making public their interest in the player.Guardiola, a former Bayern manager, said: For a long time they are talking about (it) but Leroy is our player. Hopefully he can stay here and the next season, and the next season.Guardiola hopes to keep Leroy Sane at the Etihad Stadium (Martin Rickett/PA)Guardiola was speaking at a press conference in China where City are involved in the Premier League Asia Trophy. They face Wolves in the final in Shanghai on Saturday after beating West Ham in Nanjing on Wednesday.It has been a difficult trip for City so far after their flight from the UK was twice delayed due to an administrative problem. Consequently they had little time to acclimatise or overcome jetlag before facing the Hammers after they arrived on Tuesday.Guardiola was asked bluntly if he was happy to be in China. He replied equally firmly with yes but was cryptic when asked how seriously he was taking the tour.Guardiola on Bayern's public pursuit of Sane: For a long time they are talking about their interest in Leroy Sane but he is our player and hopefully he can stay here. #MCFC pic.twitter.com/8v59K13Fzr Andy Hampson (@andyhampson) July 19, 2019As much as possible, he said.Guardiola did admit that the hot and humid conditions in China were making it difficult to train effectively.He said: We try to sleep during the night. We want to survive. We have incredible jetlag. We cannot train, we need to keep energy for the match day.City are without a number of senior stars on the trip due to international commitments and have bolstered their squad with players from the youth ranks.Extreme sightseeing In Shanghai! #mancity pic.twitter.com/gjHpPYQy4z Manchester City (@ManCity) July 18, 2019Guardiola said: We are delighted to bring young players to play with the first team.When we arrive at the start of the season, Argentina and Brazil are playing competitions from last season, so (their players) cant be here. They need time to rest.But we need to play games after a week (of training) with humidity, jetlag, (after a) 22-hour flight.They (young players) give another alternative for us. Its a friendly but its an official game against teams like West Ham and Wolves. Thats why they are here.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Hampson, PA, Shanghai'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '1905b697-895a-45da-9f6e-42db4cafaa98'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Manchester City boss Guardiola happy with defensive options'});

July 19th 2019, 9:05 am

Andreu backs new boss Goodwin to have impact at St Mirren

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Tony Andreu knows all about Jim Goodwins brawn from their battles on the pitch but the St Mirren playmaker believes his new boss also has the brains to bring success to Paisley.The former Norwich and Hamilton playmaker admits he was left battered and bruised anytime he came up against the Irish enforcer during his playing days.But now it is Goodwins savvy management that has struck the new Buddies forward.It has not been the easiest of starts for Goodwin after returning to the club he once skippered.His first game in charge ended in Betfred Cup defeat to Dunfermline while it took a last-gasp penalty to see off League Two Edinburgh City on Wednesday.But Andreu is convinced his manager can make as big an impact in the dugout as he did on the pitch.He said: I played against the manager I was covered in bruises at the end of the game. But now he is really calm and knows what he wants to do.He is very intelligent and clever and that is what we need this season.He has only been in for 20 days so it is still really early. It is still pre-season. It will take some time to get used to playing with each other and the system, but I think we are on the right track.We played well against Edinburgh but we could have played a bit quicker. In the second half we done that better and thats how we won the penalty. We are getting there.Jim is amazing. He came in really positive, with a system, and with a way of wanting to play football. He wants to play from the back, not in a crazy manner, but knows sometimes you have to play a different way.He done that against Edinburgh by going two up front in the closing stages and thats what we needed.He has been really good since he arrived. He really understands the players because it isnt so long since he stopped playing, so that helps as well.Saints will look to keep their faint hopes of topping Group H alive when they take on East Kilbride at K Park on Saturday.And Andreu says his team-mates will have to be patient again when they face up to the Lowland League outfit.It is never easy games against these teams, he said. There might be a difference in quality between the leagues but these sides come in and they compete.It is a cup game and they come in and raise their level.You need to be patient, do the basics and hope to find the goal. We need to have good finishing I felt we lacked that a little on Wednesday because if you do that early on you have a great chance of winning the game.Meanwhile, Saints have terminated Josh Heatons contract. He became the clubs most expensive signing in 25 years when he arrived from Darlington for 75,000 last summer but made just two appearances for the Buddies.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Newport, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'a54c6a63-f15b-4d9c-b4ba-9d3a75cc98c2'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Andreu backs new boss Goodwin to have impact at St Mirren'});

July 19th 2019, 9:05 am

Conte admits to frustration in so far failing to sign Lukaku

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Inter Milan head coach Antonio Conte has confirmed his desire to sign Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku a player Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has ruled out of Saturdays clash between the sides in Singapore with a knock.Two years on from joining from Everton for an initial 75million, the 26-year-old is keen to move onto pastures new and link up with the manager he spurned to join the Old Trafford giants.United sneaked ahead of Contes Chelsea to complete that move in 2017, and now the Italian is looking to link up with him at Inter, who face Solskjaers side at Singapores National Stadium on Saturday. | CONFERENCE#Conte: "Lukaku is a Manchester United player. I know him very well from the time I spent as Chelsea's Coach."#ManUtdInter #ICC2019 pic.twitter.com/zGOBjaJkVk Inter (@Inter_en) July 19, 2019I think frustrated is a big word, he said in English when asked about the inability to complete a deal.Lukaku is a United player and this is the reality. You know very well that I like this player, but also in the past when I was Chelseas coach and I tried to bring him to Chelsea.But I repeat, today Lukaku is a player of United and this is the reality and this is the truth.Lukaku, right, could have joined Chelsea when Conte was in charge but opted for United. (Martin Rickett/PA)Pushed on Inters interest in him, Conte said: I think that at this moment, I repeat, were talking about a player of another club.For this reason, I think that its right (we) dont talk about Lukaku because I have great respect for United.As I said before, for sure, I like this player and I consider him an important player for us to have a good improvement. But, at the same time, there is a market, a transfer market.We know very well which is our situation at this moment. Well see, well see what happens but now, for sure, Lukaku is a United player.Mauro Icardi is not part of Contes plans for Inter moving forward. (Niall Carson/PA)Conte confirmed striker Mauro Icardi, just like midfielder Radja Nainggolan, would not be part of the Inter project moving forwards, a decision that leaves them light in attack.For sure its not easy to play without a striker at the beginning of the season like this, Conte said.Its not easy to play against teams like Juventus and Manchester United without strikers.But the market is open so there is still a process for players to come in and out.Contes frustration in failing to sign Lukaku is understood to be echoed by the player himself.Including updates on @D_DeGea, @LukeShaw23 and @RomeluLukaku9#MUFC #MUTOUR #ICC2019 Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 19, 2019The Belgium striker watched Uniteds training session from the bench on the eve of the International Champions Cup match against his potential employers in sweltering Singapore.Lukaku was at one point seen in animated conversation with a member of the United backroom team during the session, one of many he has missed during the pre-season tour.After missing missed the wins against Perth Glory and Leeds, the 26-year-old will again fulfil a watching brief in Singapore.No, hes not fit so he wont be available, Solskjaer said in Singapore, two hours before Conte sat in the same chair.When asked if he believed Lukaku would be at the club next month, the United manager said: I dont have any updates from the last time I spoke to you. So, yeah, I do.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Simon Peach, PA Chief Football Writer, Singapore'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'c23a6cde-d9cf-4a6e-8b27-4a6a9a59b412'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Conte admits to frustration in so far failing to sign Lukaku'});

July 19th 2019, 8:35 am

Manchester United make enquiry for Merih Demiral – but face competition

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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is looking to reinforce his backline this summer, with Leicester’s Harry Maguire their top target.However, the high cost of doing a deal for the England international has seen the Old Trafford club consider Demiral as an option, according to Turkish Football.The outlet says a source close to the player has revealed that United and Atletico Madrid have contacted the Turkey international’s agents about a potential move.The 21-year-old arrived in Serie A at Sassuolo in January before joining the Old Lady this summer in a reported €18 million deal.However, the arrival of Ajax defender Matthijs de Ligt, adding to centre-back options that already include Giorgio Chiellini, Leonardo Bonucci and Daniele Rugani, mean Demiral’s game time in Turin could be limited.Juve don’t want to loan out the defender or sell him on a permanent deal to a domestic rival, and Demiral’s priority is said to be fighting for a starting place with the Serie A champions.The youngster impressed on loan at Sassuolo from Alanyaspor in the second half of the 2018/19 campaign, scoring two goals in 14 appearances and establishing himself as a regular in the heart of defence for his country.Now read...WANTAWAYS8 players who were bigger than the club (or thought they were, anyway)NEW BLOOD5 right-backs who could replace Kieran Trippier at Tottenham

July 19th 2019, 8:35 am

Halliday keen to help get redemption for Rangers

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Andy Halliday bears no responsibility for the disaster Progres Niederkorn inflicted on Rangers two years ago but that will not stop him looking to avenge the pain of 2017.The midfielder was spared the humiliation of being part of a side that crashed out against the Luxumbourg minnows when he was shunted out on loan to Azerbaijani outfit Qabala by former manager Pedro Caixinha.Instead, he watched as the Portuguese boss newly-assembled squad put together at a cost of 8.5million blew a first-leg lead as they slipped up 2-0 in the Grand Duchy.The farcical nature of the clubs worst ever European result was underlined by images of Caixinha standing a bush after the match trying to placate the furious Light Blues travelling support.Halliday first saw those pictures as he settled into his new surroundings in Baku and while he was not to blame, the boyhood Rangers fan felt the anguish all the same.Now with Steven Gerrards Gers drawn to face their old foes in the second round of this years Europa League qualifiers, the 27-year-old hopes to serve up a cold dish of revenge.He said: I wasnt here at the time. I was in another country but it was still hugely disappointing.Even as someone still contracted to the club and obviously being a fan and wanting to support my team-mates it was a hugely disappointing time for the club.We realise the repercussions of disappointing results like that so we need to be on guard and treat them with the respect we showed St Josephs on Thursday night.I suppose you could say its a good chance for redemption after the huge disappointment of two years ago.The only survivors of that Caixinha disaster still at the club are Wes Foderingham, James Tavernier, Ryan Jack, Daniel Candeias and Alfredo Morelos.Gerrards crop have already proved themselves a vastly more capable outfit after marching through four rounds to reach last seasons group stages.But Halliday still plans to sit this summers additions to the Ibrox squad down and remind them of what happened last time against Progres as a warning against complacency.Speaking after his side wrapped up a 10-0 aggregate trouncing of Gibraltarian minnows St Jospehs on Thursday, he said: Well treat them with the respect they deserve but ultimately we must go out and put on the type of performance weve shown since the start of pre-season.We showed a lot of improvement last year and played a lot of good teams on the back of making the Europa League group stages.We showed we deserved to be in the competition but there will be question marks on the basis of the result two years ago so its a good chance for the boys who were here at that time to put things right.Will we raise what happened two years ago with the new guys here now? 100 per cent, although I do believe were a different team.We could have had an upset against St Josephs home or away but we approached the game in the right manner and did the job we had to do.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Newport, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'f6e55d7a-e505-4190-86b6-61df53706d91'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Halliday keen to help get redemption for Rangers'});

July 19th 2019, 8:05 am

5 humiliating European defeats suffered by Scottish clubs

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Scottish football suffered its latest humiliation on the European scene on Thursday night when Kilmarnock crashed out of the Europa League to Welsh part-timers Connahs Quay Nomads.Angelo Alessios side had a 2-1 lead from the first leg but crumbled 2-0 at Rugby Park as their first appearance in UEFA competition since 2001 ended in disaster.Here, PA takes a look at five other results which brought shame on the nation.Celtic v Artmedia Bratislava 2005/06 Champions League second qualifying roundCeltics Shaun Maloney shows his dejection as Celtic crash out to Artmedia Bratislava (Steve Welsh/PA)Gordon Strachans Parkhead reign could not have got off to a worse start as the Hoops were thumped 5-0 in the Slovakian capital. They trailed 1-0 at the break but the roof caved in during the second half as Juraj Halenars hat-trick sealed the clubs worst result since a six-goal drubbing by Kilmarnock in 1963. Strachans men threw everything at Artmedia back in Glasgow but could only manage four goals as they crashed out 5-4 on aggregate.Falkirk v FC Vaduz 2009/10 Europa League second qualifying roundFalkirks Ryan Flynn (left) scored the Bairns first ever European goal but it was not enough to see off FC Vaduz (Danny Lawson/PA)Falkirk had waited 55 years to qualify for continental competition and finally got their chance after finishing as Scottish Cup runners-up. However, it proved to be a nightmare introduction for the Bairns as Eddie Mays side fell flat at the first hurdle after coming up against a side forced to played in the Swiss league because their native Lichtenstein does not have its own set-up. Ryan Flynn scored the clubs historic first European goal but it was wiped out in the second leg as Vaduz won 2-0 to edge through on aggregate.Aberdeen v Sigma Olomouc 2009/10 Europa League third qualifying roundAberdeen were given the run around by Czechs Sigma Olomouc (David Cheskin/PA)As a member of the Gothenburg Greats, Mark McGhee played a part in the Dons greatest ever triumph with their 1983 Cup Winners Cup final success against Real Madrid. But his first match as Reds boss ended in humiliation as their Czech visitors ran riot at Pittodrie with a 5-1 mauling. Aberdeen slumped again in the return leg, this time going down 3-0, as they surpassed their previous worst European result the 5-0 aggregate pasting from eventual European champions Liverpool in 1981.Hibs v Malmo 2013/14 Europa League second qualifying roundMalmo hold the record for the biggest ever aggregate win over a Scottish club in Europe, having defeated Hibs 9-0 on aggregate in 2013/14. SPLstats (@SPLstats) August 19, 2015Hibernian were the first ever British club to play in European competition when they marched all the way to the semi-finals of the inaugural European Cup in 1955 but the clubs proud history suffered a dent 58 years later when they were humiliated 9-0 on aggregate by the Swedes. A campaign that would eventually end in relegation started just as painfully as Malmo followed up their two-goal win at home by crushing Pat Fenlons side 7-0 in front of a shell-shocked 16,000 Easter Road crowd.Rangers v Progres Neiderkorn 2017/18 Europa League first qualifying roundProgrs Niederkorn shock Rangers, plus revised #UEL second qualifying round draw https://t.co/X5gHtieG6e UEFA Europa League (@EuropaLeague) July 4, 2017Pedro Caixinha splashed out 8.5million as he looked to prepare Gers for their first European adventure in six years but it was not enough to guarantee safe passage beyond minnows Neiderkorn of Luxembourg. Kenny Miller did give the Light Blues a narrow first-leg lead after a nervy Ibrox clash but disaster struck in the Grand Duchy as Progres won 2-0 to seal what for many is the single worst result in Rangers history. Needless to say, Caixinha did not last much longer.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Newport, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'd6af4db1-8ea7-43ec-935f-14f6b0ec4a2c'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': '5 humiliating European defeats suffered by Scottish clubs'});

July 19th 2019, 8:05 am

Wilshere keen to make up for lost time at West Ham

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Jack Wilshere is eager to make up for lost time after his first season at West Ham was ruined by injury.The England midfielder made just eight appearances for the Hammers last term due to ankle problems.They were merely the latest of a number of injury setbacks throughout the 27-year-olds career but he now hopes to put those frustrations behind him.The former Arsenal player said: I just want to play as much as I can. Last year was tough for me but injuries can happen any time.Im just taking each day as it comes, working hard in training and then (hoping to) prove myself in games. I want to play a big part this season and play as much as I can.I dont need to tell you frustrating it was. I was in the team, I wanted a new challenge and I wanted to play.I was really happy with the way I was playing, I started well, but then picked up my injuries.It was devastating but I put that behind me and came back at the end of the season. I missed being around the team and travelling with the boys.But I have had a good couple of weeks now, I am ready to go and be involved. I just want to push on now.Wilshere was speaking at a press conference in Shanghai, where the Hammers are involved in the Premier League Asia Trophy.They play Newcastle in the third-place play-off on Saturday after losing 4-1 to Manchester City in Nanjing on Wednesday.Wilshere said: Its important to have a full pre-season. I enjoy pre-season and playing games. I know how important it is for my sharpness.You can train as much as you like, but there is no substitute for playing games and I want to play as many games as I can.Despite his hard work over the summer, Wilshere accepts he faces competition to win a place back in the team.He said: There is a lot of quality in this team, especially in the midfield area, so its down to us as individuals to show the manager in training and in games that we should be playing.Its a long season, though, so I am sure we will all have opportunities to prove ourselves.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Hampson, PA, Shanghai'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '7b5fbb11-7511-43e3-9b1e-35b2318c7897'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Wilshere keen to make up for lost time at West Ham'});

July 19th 2019, 8:05 am

Left-back keen on Barcelona move ahead of crunch talks with Bayern Munich

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The Camp Nou club want to sign the Austrian to provide competition for left-back Jordi Alba, according to ESPN FC sources.Alaba’s representatives offered the versatile defender to Barça a few weeks ago and the 27-year-old is now considered a top target for the La Liga club.Alba is currently the only left-back in Ernesto Valverde’s squad, while Alaba's’s experience and ability to play in a variety of roles, including centre-back, make him an attractive proposition."The player is interested in coming," a Barça source is quoted as saying."It's a complicated operation, but not an impossible one."Bayern are likely to drive a hard bargain for Alaba, who has two years remaining on his contract, despite the player’s eagerness to make the move happen.The Catalan club are therefore considering alternative options, including Augsburg’s Philipp Max and Junior Firpo of Real Betis.Max has been tracked for the last year by Barcelona, but they could face competition from Borussia Dortmund.Junior could be allowed to leave Betis for less than his €40 million release clause, but he is considered the third-choice option by the Catalans.Now read...WANTAWAYS8 players who were bigger than the club (or thought they were, anyway)NEW BLOOD5 right-backs who could replace Kieran Trippier at Tottenham

July 19th 2019, 8:05 am

De Ligt picked Juventus due to Sarri’s footballing philosophy

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Matthijs De Ligt has hailed the philosophy of new Juventus manager Maurizio Sarri as one of the key reasons behind his decision to join the Bianconeri.After being courted by several clubs over the summer, the Holland centre-back opted to leave Ajax for Turin in a deal worthan initial 75 million euros (67.8million), with the 19-year-old signing a five-year deal.At his first press conference on Friday, De Ligt confirmed it was a chat with former Chelsea boss Sarri that helped to make up his mind.Welcome to your new home, Matthijs! #TURNDELIGTON pic.twitter.com/q7w7cjnOTz JuventusFC (@juventusfcen) July 19, 2019De Ligt said:I spoke to Sarri on the phone before coming just to get to know each other. He was one of the reasons that I wanted to join here.Ive heard a lot of good things about him and I like his footballing philosophy and how he prepares his defence.De Ligt also highlighted Italys focus on the defensive side of the game as another factor in his decision, and he is confident of not only furthering his development but using that to aid Juves cause.pic.twitter.com/OWtj4TxeA5 Matthijs de Ligt (@MatthijsDeLigt) July 19, 2019I came here because Italy is one of the most traditional countries for defenders, said De Ligt. Juventus is a great forwards step for me.In Holland, there is a lot of building from the back and defending high up the pitch. Italy is more about zonal marking and defending together.I think that Juve can help me and I can help them. Ajax was a younger environment and here I hope that I can learn from great champions like (Giorgio) Chiellini, Gianluigi Buffon, Cristiano (Ronaldo) and many others. View this post on Instagram First day as a juventino, first day of a new adventure @juventus #TURNDELIGTONA post shared by Matthijs de Ligt (@mdeligt_) on Jul 18, 2019 at 3:30am PDTDe Ligt, who posted a video on Instagram that includes an image of him wearing a Juve shirt when he was a boy, knows he still has much to learn over a decade later as he now wears the teams latest kit as a professional.The photo of me in a Juventus shirt was taken when I was about six or seven, at that time Fabio Cannavaro was a defender that I admired, said De Ligt.I always had a good feeling about Juventus and Ive always been a fan.#TurnDeLigtOn pic.twitter.com/jNV4Y7XNmG Matthijs de Ligt (@MatthijsDeLigt) July 18, 2019Im still young but I feel like Ive got a lot of experience for a 19-year-old, thats why I made this move, to gain more experience and to learn from the players here.Its a big step, my first outside of my home country.I can still improve and I want to do that. Its important to work hard every day and to learn and I hope to become a better player.We want to win them all: this is the mentality of Juventus.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'f0d0bd32-c921-49bc-b6a2-53ac0d0115b8'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'De Ligt picked Juventus due to Sarri\u2019s footballing philosophy'});

July 19th 2019, 7:35 am

Arsenal set to complete €40 million transfer of Copa America hero

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The winger played a key role in Brazil’s Copa America triumph this summer, scoring three goals– including a strike in the 3-1 final victory over Peru.Marca reports that the Gunners are closing in on a deal, following reports that the north London side had sent a doctor to Brazil to put the player through a medical.Arsenal have been regularly linked with a move for Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha this summer, but the high demands coming from Selhurst Park have seen them turn attention to Everton.The 23-year-old has spent his career so far at Gremio, scoring 38 goals in 148 appearances.Now read...WANTAWAYS8 players who were bigger than the club (or thought they were, anyway)NEW BLOOD5 right-backs who could replace Kieran Trippier at Tottenham

July 19th 2019, 7:35 am

Bruce ignored Shearer advice in accepting Newcastle job

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Steve Bruce has confirmed even good friend Alan Shearer could not persuade him not to take the head coachs job at Newcastle.The Magpies record goalscorer revealed in a newspaper column this week that he had advised the 58-year-old over dinner earlier this summer not to accept Mike Ashleys offer of employment if it came his way in the wake of Rafael Benitezs departure as manager.However, speaking at a press conference in Shanghai on Thursday, Bruce insisted he simply could not take Shearers advice.Alan Shearer celebrates after scoring his 201st goal for Newcastle to break Jackie Milburns record (Owen Humphreys/PA)He said: Well, make no mistake, Alan is a big, big friend of mine and hes welcome to his opinions, but I would like to think I am my own man.As Ive said many times, I understand the challenge that lies ahead. Im not everybodys cup of tea, I am not Rafa Benitez, so whoever was going to sit in this seat was going to find it difficult.However, Im confident enough that with my experience and the people I have brought with me, that well continue to take the club forward, and thats why Im sitting in the position Im in right now.Aarons hoping for an opportunity under "top manager" Bruce Rolando Aarons spoke to NUFC TV from Shanghai ahead of Saturday's Premier League clash against West Ham United and gave his thoughts on the appointment of Steve Bruce, who he played under for Sheffield Wednesday FC last season. Watch the full interview: https://www.nufc.co.uk/nufc-tv/latest-videos/aarons-hoping-for-an-opportunity-under-top-manager-bruce/Posted by Newcastle United on Thursday, July 18, 2019Bruce is well aware that his appointment has not gone down well with a section of the Toon Army despite heading off for China as his arrival was announced, but he is pleased for a chance to prove himself.He said: I dont read it because if you want to take it personally and read and scrutinise everything thats thrown your way, then you would end up in a mad house.Just judge me over the period of time, and Im quietly confident after maybe 400 games in the Premier League that Ill do okay.Bruce accepted his dream job after resigning from his post at Sheffield Wednesday, sparking a wrangle over compensation which remains unresolved with the Owls taking legal advice.Sheffield Wednesday have issued the following club statement #swfc Sheffield Wednesday (@swfc) July 17, 2019He said: Id like to put it out there that a managers contract is a managers contract. When its terminated, compensation should be due, and that applies to when a manager wants to leave or hands in his resignation.I am disappointed about that because I thought that was in hand. However, its football and I wish them the best of luck in the future.As Ive said many, many times, it was the challenge and the chance to go and manage Newcastle United, the great club that it is, that was the overriding factor for me to be as selfish as I was. Newcastle face West Ham in the Premier League Asia Trophy on Saturday, but behind the scenes, work is ongoing to rebuild the squad with strikers the main priority.Bruces job title of head coach suggested he may not have the influence Benitez wanted over signings, but the former Manchester United defender has insisted that is not the case.He said: The big one, of course, is what youre insinuating there, am I in charge of transfers or am I just going to sit there and be a puppet? That wont happen.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Damian Spellman, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'a4a5c4d5-acb6-4727-9ed6-9bb33d6293c7'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Bruce ignored Shearer advice in accepting Newcastle job'});

July 19th 2019, 7:05 am

Antonio Conte infuriated as Inter Milan's interest in Romelu Lukaku wanes

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The Belgium international is Conte’s top target to lead the line during his first season in charge, but the two clubs are yet to agree on a fee.The Sun reports that the Serie A side are now starting to express doubts about whether Lukaku is worth the expense as United hold out for £75 million.Inter are now said to be considering less costly options such as Lille’s Rafael Leao.This has enraged former Chelsea boss Conte, as he was assured before taking the job that he would be able to count on a forward line boasting Lukaku and Edin Dzeko.Neither player has been brought in yet, despite the San Siro hierarchy’s pledge that they would be fully committed to signing the Belgian. To make matters worse, players deemed to be surplus to requirements by Conte such as Mauro Icardi, Radja Nainggolan and Joao Mario are still at the club.Inter this week prepared an offer worth around £60m plus another £15m of bonuses, but the Old Trafford club are standing firm and have told the Italians to meet their price or forget about doing business.Now read...WANTAWAYS8 players who were bigger than the club (or thought they were, anyway)NEW BLOOD5 right-backs who could replace Kieran Trippier at Tottenham

July 19th 2019, 7:05 am

Fernando Llorente set for surprise return to Tottenham this summer

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The 34-year-old’s deal with the Premier League side expired on June 30 and he is currently a free agent.The Evening Standard reports that Spurs are prepared to hand the Spaniard a new one-year deal on reduced terms from his previous £100,000-per-week contract.Llorente will now consider his next move as he weighs up his options, which include Fiorentina and a possible switchback to Spain.The former Swansea striker scored just one goal in 20 Premier League appearances for Mauricio Pochettino's side last season, but chipped in with crucial strikes against Borussia Dortmund and Manchester City during their run to the Champions League final.Now read...WANTAWAYS8 players who were bigger than the club (or thought they were, anyway)NEW BLOOD5 right-backs who could replace Kieran Trippier at Tottenham

July 19th 2019, 6:53 am

Arsenal face competition as Premier League rivals Everton join the chase for Wilfried Zaha

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Reports on Thursday claimed that the Ivory Coast international has asked to leave Selhurst Park admit interest from the Gunners.Arsenal have been viewed as the leading candidates to sign Zaha this summer, despite having an opening £40 million bid rejected.However, the Evening Standard believes that they could face competition from Premier League rivals Everton.The Goodison Park club are set to bring in around £22.5m by selling Ademola Lookman to RB Leipzig and want to use that money to fund the signing of another winger.Palace value the 26-year-old Zaha at £80m, but Toffees majority shareholder Farhad Moshiri has previously demonstrated that he is willing to splash out big sums in the market.Everton could struggle to convince the player to join them, though, as he has spoken of his desire to play in the Champions League before and his brother Judicael Zaha has said that Arsenal is his preferred next destination.Now read...WANTAWAYS8 players who were bigger than the club (or thought they were, anyway)NEW BLOOD5 right-backs who could replace Kieran Trippier at Tottenham

July 19th 2019, 6:04 am

Lukaku will not play for Manchester United against Inter Milan

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Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku will not play against Inter Milan on Saturday amid continuing speculation that he could join the Serie A club this summer.United are due to face Inter in the International Champions Cup in Singapore this weekend, but the Belgium international will not be involved.Asked at a press conference if Lukaku would be fit, and if he would play him against the Italian side considering the ongoing speculation, Red Devils boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said: No, hes not fit, so he wont be available, so that answers the second one as well.Heading out for our open training session in Singapore! To see more of the squad in action, watch now on #MUTV: https://t.co/csiMNYDpXG #MUFC #MUTOUR #ICC2019 pic.twitter.com/E37TsNzhoq Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 19, 2019Inter are yet to meet Uniteds asking price for the striker who cost them 75million from Everton two summers ago, and Solskjaer insisted his situation remained unchanged.He added: I dont have any updates from the last time I spoke to you.In the meantime, the Norwegian will concentrate on the task of preparing his players for the third game of their pre-season campaign with the squad having been boosted by the arrivals of Matteo Darmian, Fred and Dean Henderson.Brazilian midfielder Fred has returned after being married in Brazil, and Solskjaer is hopeful the club will get more from the man for whom they paid Shakhtar Donetsk 52million last summer when the new season gets under way.Manchester United are expecting more from midfielder Fred this season (Martin Rickett/PA)He said: Youre not surprised when a player from Brazil thats played in Ukraine finds it a little bit hard in the beginning, but we know the talent is there.We have seen towards the end of the season what Fred can give us, the PSG game, the Arsenal, Man City, and of course hes one that we hope is going to take another step this season.Hopefully missing 10 days of our pre-season wont set him back too much. Fred has been back over in Brazil and had his wedding and got married, so hes probably got loads of energy and Im sure hes keen to join in.Like Lukaku, goalkeeper David de Gea and full-back Luke Shaw both missed Wednesdays 4-0 win over Leeds, but both could be involved in Singapore.Including updates on @D_DeGea, @LukeShaw23 and @RomeluLukaku9#MUFC #MUTOUR #ICC2019 Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 19, 2019Solskjaer said: I think both will be available. Luke did a decent training session yesterday before we left and David is training today, so well try to get 60 (minutes) or longer out of him.He added with a smile: It shouldnt be too difficult hes a keeper.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '08701966-6188-4b46-827b-4a50f6a570f9'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Lukaku will not play for Manchester United against Inter Milan'});

July 19th 2019, 5:50 am

Gareth Bale to be reintegrated as Real Madrid put Paul Pogba pursuit on hold

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Real boss Zinedine Zidane is keen to bring in the Manchester United midfielder this summer, while Bale has fallen out of favour and isn’t in the Frenchman’s plans.Perez hasalready invested heavily in the market this summer with the signings of Eden Hazard, Luka Jovic, Eder Militao and Ferland Mendy.According to the Independent, the Merengues president now wants Zidane to drop his interest in Pogba as he looks to limit further spending.The Bernabeu club’s failure to sell high-profile players like Bale and goalkeeper Keylor Navas this summer means they haven’t been able to raise the funds needed to launch an assault for Pogba.Perez planned on selling the former Tottenham winger but his high demands for a transfer fee, coupled with the Wales international’s wage demands, have put off any suitors.According to the outlet, Bale’s favoured destination if he did leave would be Chelsea, but the Stamford Bridge club are currently facing a two-window transfer ban.The circumstances have led Perez to ask Zidane to consider reintegrating Bale and wait a little longer for Pogba, who appears set to stay at Old Trafford as things stand.Now read...WANTAWAYS8 players who were bigger than the club (or thought they were, anyway)NEW BLOOD5 right-backs who could replace Kieran Trippier at Tottenham

July 19th 2019, 5:34 am

5 things you should know about Connah’s Quay Nomads

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Welsh Premier League part-timers Connahs Quay Nomads produced a stunning Europa League qualifying performance to beat Scottish heavyweights Kilmarnock 3-2 on aggregate and book a tie against Partizan Belgrade.Here, PA takes a closer look at five things about the Flintshire club.HistoryFULL TIME | @KilmarnockFC 0-2 Nomads (2-3 agg) ITS THE GREATEST WELSH FOOTBALL RESULT OF ALL TIME! WERE GOING TO SERBIA! Say it with us #NomadsNeverDie Connah's Quay Nomads (@the_nomads) July 18, 2019The present-day club was formed as Connahs Quay Juniors in 1946, being driven by Connahs Quay native and former Wales and Everton defender Tommy Jones. After limited spells of success, Connahs Quay were League of Wales founder members in 1992, winning the competitions League Cup four years later and reaching the 1998 Welsh Cup final in 1998. Following a spell in the Cymru Alliance, they regained Welsh League status in 2012 and have gone from strength to strength, securing top-three Welsh Premier League finishes during the last three seasons and challenging for Europa League qualification, in addition to reaching last seasons Scottish Challenge Cup final.Home sweet homeFormer world darts champion Ted Hankey (Sean Dempsey/PA)The Nomads play at the 1,600-capacity Deeside Stadium. Their record attendance was 1,068 for a Scottish Challenge Cup semi-final against Edinburgh City last season. The Partizan Belgrade home tie, though, is set to take place at nearby Rhyls Belle Vue ground. Connahs Quay, itself, is situated six miles west of Chester and has a population of just over 16,000. The Quay is Flintshires largest town, and its former residents include ex-world darts champion Ted Hankey.Andy MorrisonHaving had time to reflect .As a manager You need to have luck and good fortune on your side to be successful .We make our own good fortune time after time .My luck is the staff I have and the group of players I work with which makes me the luckiest manager in football !! Andy Morrison (@AndyMorri5on) July 19, 2019Former Manchester City captain Morrison took charge of the Nomads in November 2015, and he has led the club to consistent success. After being signed by Joe Royle, he played for City between 1998 and 2002, and was once famously sent off for sticking his tongue out at Stan Collymore during a game against Fulham. Scotsman Morrison also played for Plymouth, Blackburn, Blackpool and Huddersfield during a playing career that spanned more than 250 games. His managerial stint at the Nomads has seen them become consistent Welsh Premier League title challengers and Europa League qualification regulars.Rhys HealeyRhys Healey in action for Cardiff (Steve Paston/PA)Striker Healey is the Nomads most successful playing product. He joined the clubs renowned youth set-up in 2009 and scored 12 goals during his Welsh Premier League debut season. He moved on to Cardiff City, making his Premier League debut against Chelsea after going on as a substitute for Craig Bellamy, before moving to Colchester on loan in 2014. He also had loan spells with Dundee, Newport County and Torquay United, and he signed a permanent deal with League One club MK Dons this summer following a successful loan spell last term when he helped them clinch promotion.European exploitsYou just never know in football.. We all presumed it would be Kilmarnock but @the_nomads have proved everyone wrong.It's a trip to Wales on July 25 in the @EuropaLeague 2nd qualifying round And then, back to Belgrade on August 1 pic.twitter.com/gNAq1bKBAS Partizan Belgrade (@FKPartizanEN) July 18, 2019A 3-2 aggregate victory over Kilmarnock was comfortably the Nomads finest Europa League qualifying round achievement, but they are no strangers to the tournaments demanding qualification process. Their first European campaign in 2016-17 saw them beat Norwegian side Stabaek before going out to Serbian club FK Vojvodina. The following season, a 1-0 home leg victory was not enough to see off HJK Helsinki on aggregate, while this years already memorable campaign began with a 5-1 aggregate success against Belarus opponents Shakhtyor Soligorsk before Kilmarnock were sent packing.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'ab295fc4-485b-424c-bd95-2c9dd53b12ab'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': '5 things you should know about Connah\u2019s Quay Nomads'});

July 19th 2019, 5:18 am

Kane still struggling with missed opportunity in Champions League final

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Harry Kane is still reeling from Tottenhams Champions League disappointment as the trophy was there for the taking.It is just 48 days since Spurs first ever European Cup final appearance ended in heartache at the Wanda Metropolitano.Jurgen Klopps Liverpool were crowned European champions for the sixth time after a 2-0 victory that saw another impressive season under Mauricio Pochettino end trophyless.Kane understandably tried to focus on the positives when asked about the final during the pre-season trip to Singapore, although the Spurs striker clearly felt it was a big opportunity missed.It was a tough one to take, the England captain said at the National Stadium. We did extremely well to reach the Champions League final and, of course, when you get to those big games and you dont quite perform the way you know you can, thats always the bit that hurts you the most.We know it was there for the taking and thats something we have to deal with and something weve had to think about over the summer.Its a hard one to get over but, all in all, with everything surrounding us, the start at Wembley, and things like that, I think we did extremely well, and its now given us the confidence and belief that we can be in the big games, the Champions League finals, so its down to us this season to try and perform again.Asked if he had watched the final back, Kane said: No, I havent. I dont want to watch it.As a player, you know when you could have done better, you could have done more.Like I said, its a hard one, because its probably one of the biggest games well ever play in our careers and to let it slide by is always a tough one to take.Its an experience we need to learn from and Ive said before, its not the easiest final to get over, but with the belief we have in the squad, we know were capable of doing that.Kane brushed aside a question about his selection for the final and is keen to move on, with a full season in their stunning new stadium to look forward to and the chance to launch a sustained Premier League title tilt.Its hard to sit here and say a reason why or how were going to do it, we just have to play better, perform better, Kane added. We know we could have done a lot better in the league last season.There were certain games that were just unacceptable from our point of view, so we need to try to be more consistent. Thats the key.When you look at City and Liverpool, thats what they were last season, consistent over the 38 games and its down to us to match that if not better it.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Simon Peach, PA Chief Football Writer, Singapore'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'fdce0cd5-bbd7-4857-bc7e-31e815710813'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Kane still struggling with missed opportunity in Champions League final'});

July 19th 2019, 5:18 am

Barcelona step up Neymar chase with mammoth players-plus-cash bid for PSG star

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The Brazilian is eager to leave the French capital this summer and favours a return to Barça, who he left in a £200 million deal two years ago.Sky in Germany reports that the Camp Nou club have made a bid of £90 million plus a choice of two players from a list of Philippe Coutinho, Ousmane Dembele, Ivan Rakitic, Nelson Semedo, Malcom and Samuel Umtiti.However, PSG are understood to want over £200 million for the forward and Brazilian outlet Esporte Interativo claims that the Ligue 1 champions will not consider a swap deal.The French club’s sporting director Leonardo last week admitted that Neymar would be allowed to leave for “an offer that suits everyone”.Sky believes that PSG tried to convince the Brazil international to change his mind, and that the 27-year-old didn’t tell his employers where he would like to move to.Neymar’s father flew to London from Brazil with the player’s agent on Wednesday for talks with representatives from PSG and Barcelona.However, reports that Neymar’s agent had held talks with Juventus are understood to be untrue.Now read...WANTAWAYS 8 players who were bigger than the club (or thought they were, anyway)NEW BLOOD 5 right-backs who could replace Kieran Trippier at Tottenham

July 19th 2019, 5:04 am

Rondon leaves West Brom for Chinese Super League

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Salomon Rondon has completed a move to Dalian Yifang from West Brom for an undisclosed fee, the Sky Bet Championship club announced on Friday.The striker spent last season on loan at Newcastle and links up again with manager Rafael Benitez, who left St James Park for the Chinese Super League club at the end of last month.Rondon joined the Baggies in the summer of 2015, making 120 appearances for the club and scoring 28 goals before their relegation from the Premier League at the end of the 2017-18 campaign.The Venezuela international made 33 appearances for Newcastle last season.Rondon joins former Napoli captain Marek Hamsik and Belgium winger Yannick Carrasco on the books at Dalian Yifang.The club wishes Salomon and his family all the very best in the future, read a West Brom statement.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'd3aefd55-44bf-4d0b-964e-2bd8dc1056a3'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Rondon leaves West Brom for Chinese Super League'});

July 19th 2019, 4:48 am

Sean Longstaff flattered by Manchester United link

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Newcastle midfielder Sean Longstaff has admitted he is flattered to have been linked with a big money move to Manchester United.The 21-year-old home-grown talent burst on to the first-team scene at St James Park under Rafael Benitez last season before a knee injury ended his breakthrough campaign prematurely.Despite having just eight Premier League starts to his name, Longstaff has been identified as a target by United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, although the Red Devils 25million valuation of the player is nowhere near that of the Magpies.Nevertheless, he is simply concentrating on the task of getting himself fit again on the clubs pre-season training trip to China, with new head coach Steve Bruce now in charge.Longstaff told the Chronicle: If somebody had said to be me a year ago I would be in this position, I would probably have laughed at them.This time last year, I was deciding whether to go to League One on loan. A year on, you are seeing your name linked with one of the biggest clubs in the world.For me, it is all a positive really. It gives you even more confidence. When I was in for a short amount of time, people took notice of me.It is flattering, but my job is at Newcastle. The new boss is coming in and its a clean slate for everybody including me.I just get my head down and work on the pitch. Like anybody knows, you are no use to anybody if you arent fit.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Damian Spellman, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'c8d8f927-3873-4d57-a78e-4b4e911a0716'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Sean Longstaff flattered by Manchester United link'});

July 19th 2019, 4:48 am

Friday's big transfer rumours: Tottenham facing fresh contract crisis for defender

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What the papers sayParis Saint-Germain are interested in signing Tottenham’s Danny Rose, the Mirror reports. The England left-back, 29, has been left out of his club’s pre-season tour to Asia, with Spurs willing to listen to offers for him. They are said to want at least £20 million for Rose, who was signed from Leeds for £1min 2007.Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers has told Manchester United he will slam the door on any cut-price attempt to snatch Harry Maguire, the Daily Star reports.Unai Emery is reportedly keen to add to his squad over the summer (Bradley Collyer/PA)The Independent says Arsenal boss Unai Emery insiststhe Gunners are working to bring in “three or four” players before the start of the new season.Meanwhile, one of Frank Lampard’s first decisions as the new Chelsea boss will be whether to offer Willian a new contract to stay at Stamford Bridge, the Express says. The Brazilian has one year remaining on his current deal but it is thought Barcelona could swoop in with a £30m offer for the 30-year-old.Social media round-upArgentina's 'next Lionel Messi' shuns new deal as he hopes for Premier League transfer, with one bid already rejected | https://t.co/cMGETRK3sm pic.twitter.com/xK4Okzadbc— Mirror Football (@MirrorFootball) July 18, 2019Frank Lampard claims Chelsea’s transfer ban could be a blessing in disguisehttps://t.co/Tocgsxqwoa— The Sun Football (@TheSunFootball) July 18, 2019Players to watchJan Vertonghen: The Belgian defender is refusing to commit his long-term future to Tottenham, with his deal running out at the end of the season, The Sun reports.Tottenham’s Jan Vertonghen is out of contract at the end of the season (Martin Rickett/PA)Nicolo Zaniolo: Manchester United look to be ready to enter the race for the £25m-rated Roma midfielder but will face competition from Tottenham and Juventus, the Mirror reports.NOW READ...LIST5 right-backs who could replace Kieran Trippier at TottenhamIF ONLY...11 world-class players who nearly joined unfashionable Premier League clubs

July 19th 2019, 4:05 am

Sadio Mane says he'd swap Champions League for Africa Cup of Nations glory

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Liverpool and Senegal forward Sadio Mane said he would exchange his Champions League title for a win over Algeria in the final of the Africa Cup of Nations on Friday.Senegal will be looking to win the tournament for the first time in Cairo having only reached the final once before in 2002.Speaking to the BBC, Mane said: “For sure, I would be ready (to swap), even today.“We know it won’t be easy but it’s normal, it’s part of football. Algeria is a great team and now I’m just looking forward to playing in the final and to win it.”Senegal coach Aliou Cisse said, as quoted by cafonline.com: “This game is going to be tough but we want to make our people happy.”Algeria beat Senegal 1-0 in the group stage at this year’s tournament but Cisse insists his side have put the earlier meeting behind them.“We are not under pressure, but we wake up every day happy that we are here and that we are lucky to work with passion,” he said. “We represent our country, our supporters and our flag.“We always play to win. Senegal always had great talents, but I think this generation is the best.”Senegal will be without defender Kalidou Koulibaly after the Napoli player picked up a second tournament yellow card in the semi-final victory over Tunisia.Algeria coach Djamel Belmadi is confident his squad are ready to face the highest-ranked African team.“We will prepare for that match as we did for the previous ones. We are focused and I rely on my players’ motivation and enthusiasm,” said Belmadi.“We are playing against the best African ranked team, and they played in the previous World Cup, so we can lose, they are the favourites.”He added: “We are not tired, but 100 per cent ready.”

July 19th 2019, 3:48 am

Kilmarnock boss Angelo Alessio apologises for Europa League exit

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Kilmarnock manager Angelo Alessio apologised for his sides embarrassing Europa League exit to Welsh underdogs Connahs Quay Nomads and vowed to learn from it.The Rugby Park outfits first European campaign in 18-years ended in humiliation as they were sent crashing out of the Europa League qualifiers following a 2-0 defeat as both sides were reduced to 10 men.Connahs Quay Nomads lost 2-1 at home in the first leg but they turned this tie around in sensation fashion following a second-half goal from Ryan Wignall and a Callum Morris penalty to set up a second qualifying round tie against Partizan Belgrade.Kilmarnocks Stuart Findlay was shown a straight red card for conceding the penalty and Connahs Quay goalscorer Wignall was sent off with five minutes remaining after receiving his second bookings.New Killie boss Alessio who took the reins from Steve Clarke this summer held his hands up for the defeat but vowed his charges will learn from it.Alessio said: Im sorry. Im sorry for this result, this is a bad result for us. We won 2-1 in Connahs Quay last week but today we lost 2-0 but its important for us to learn from this game and to continue to work hard every day.This team and these players they have shown the right attitude, the right mentality in the past. This is a bad result but we have to learn from this match.In the first half we have three opportunities to score a goal and their goalkeeper made great saves, this can happen.At the same time in the second half its important dont lose your head and stay in the game.We conceded two goals, the second a penalty, but this is football.I dont feel like I have lost the good feeling from the fans. It is important to remember that this is only the first game.Yes, it is a bad result and I am sorry for this because I am the manager but it is important to stay together. Everyone the fans, the club and you guys in the media.Connahs Quay Nomads manager Andy Morrison hailed the result as one of the best in Welsh football history.Morrison said: This is one of the greatest results in Welsh Premier League history and Europe.It is all relative. Liverpool beat Barcelona 4-0 and people said that was remarkable but that (Thursday nights match) was on a par with it as the gulf between the two teams is huge.For us to come here and win 2-0 is amazing. We were written off and were 66/1 to win 2-0 and nobody gave us a hope in hell.It is a special night in Welsh football.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'f03a1f04-7f0c-41e2-b1b4-60ee5c77cce1'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Kilmarnock boss Angelo Alessio apologises for Europa League exit'});

July 18th 2019, 6:39 pm

Sadio Mane would swap Champions League for Africa Cup of Nations glory

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Liverpool and Senegal forward Sadio Mane said he would exchange his Champions League title for a win over Algeria in the final of the Africa Cup of Nations on Friday.Senegal will be looking to win the tournament for the first time in Cairo having only reached the final once before in 2002.Speaking to the BBC, Mane said: For sure, I would be ready (to swap), even today.We know it wont be easy but its normal, its part of football. Algeria is a great team and now Im just looking forward to playing in the final and to win it.Spearheading @FootballSenegal #TotalAFCON2019 pic.twitter.com/iKIT5JjmRN CAF (@CAF_Online) July 18, 2019Senegal coach Aliou Cisse said, as quoted by cafonline.com: This game is going to be tough but we want to make our people happy.Algeria beat Senegal 1-0 in the group stage at this years tournament but Cisse insists his side have put the earlier meeting behind them.Fully focused #TotalAFCON2019 pic.twitter.com/ufdbVLBJVr CAF (@CAF_Online) July 18, 2019We are not under pressure, but we wake up every day happy that we are here and that we are lucky to work with passion, he said. We represent our country, our supporters and our flag.We always play to win. Senegal always had great talents, but I think this generation is the best.Senegal will be without defender Kalidou Koulibaly after the Napoli player picked up a second tournament yellow card in the semi-final victory over Tunisia.#LesVerts trained for a final time ahead of #SENALG the tournament's final #TotalAFCON2019 pic.twitter.com/ZQIHh1Jtcj CAF (@CAF_Online) July 18, 2019Algeria coach Djamel Belmadi is confident his squad are ready to face the highest-ranked African team.We will prepare for that match as we did for the previous ones. We are focused and I rely on my players motivation and enthusiasm, said Belmadi.We are playing against the best African ranked team, and they played in the previous World Cup, so we can lose, they are the favourites.He added: We are not tired, but 100 per cent ready.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'd8c5f7e5-aee6-4994-9b4e-f955b81601cb'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Sadio Mane would swap Champions League for Africa Cup of Nations glory'});

July 18th 2019, 6:23 pm

Manchester City defender Mendy set to miss start of season

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Manchester City left-back Benjamin Mendy is set to miss the start of next season as he continues his recovery from knee problems.PA understands the France international is still being treated in Barcelona and is not expected to return to training in Manchester until next month.That means the 25-year-old is unlikely to be available for the Community Shield against Liverpool on August 4 or the Premier League opener at West Ham the following week.Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola, right, has been without Mendy, left, for some time (Martin Rickett/PA)After two years of injury problems, it is possible the champions may not even risk Mendy until after the first international break of the season in early September.Mendy has undergone two knee operations since joining City in a 49.1million deal in 2017 and suffered further setbacks after his latest comeback in January.He spent time late last season and over the summer working with specialist Dr Ramon Cugat in Barcelona and that treatment is continuing.Mendy who prompted manager Pep Guardiola to swear in a press conference in February by joking he was in Hong Kong is therefore missing Citys pre-season tour of Asia.Angelino has returned to City (Nick Potts/PA)His absence offers new signing Angelino an early chance to stake a claim for the left-back spot.City activated a 5.3milion buy-back clause in the Spaniards contract at PSV Eindhoven to re-sign the 22-year-old just a year after selling him to the Dutch club. His arrival means City now have specialist cover at left-back after playing with makeshifts Oleksandr Zinchenko and Fabian Delph in the position in recent times.It was my objective to get back to the club, and it worked really well at PSV, said Angelino, who made just three first-team appearances in his first spell at City.I had the clause in the contract to come back, so it was up to me to have a good season and see what happened. Thankfully it happened. I didnt expect it but I was hoping to get a call.The club has confirmed that Angelino will wear the No.12 jersey next season. #ManCity pic.twitter.com/Vp6cZy7xSz Manchester City Nigeria (@ManCity_NG) July 18, 2019The clause meant City could buy Angelino back well below his market value after an impressive season in the PSV side. He had been linked with 20million moves to Paris St Germain and Arsenal.He said: I started here at City so returning was my main focus.I have improved a lot. I am not the same player I was when I was here. The last season at PSV was really good and hopefully I can do the same.Angelino featured in Citys Premier League Asia Trophy match against West Ham on Wednesday but expects it to be tough to hold down a regular place.He said: It is a tough group. They have the best players as an XI and in every position there is a lot of competition. It is hard but you have to train hard and hopefully you will get a chance.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Hampson, PA, Shanghai'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '9d7c4c1d-355d-4b0f-b55d-4e5e977147ac'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Manchester City defender Mendy set to miss start of season'});

July 18th 2019, 6:23 pm

Kilmarnock unlocked by Connah’s Quay in European upset

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New Kilmarnock manager Angelo Alessio endured a nightmare home debut as the Rugby Park side crashed out of the Europa League qualifiers to Welsh underdogs Connahs Quay Nomads.Rugby Park was hosting its first European tie in 18 years and Kilmarnock were looking to build on their 2-1 first-leg lead and secure a tie against Partizan Belgrade in the second qualifying round, but instead it was Connahs Quay who progressed following a sensational 2-0 win.Second-half goals from Ryan Wignall and Callum Morris (penalty) turned the tie on its head and ensured former Chelsea, Juventus and Italy assistant manager Alessio had a home debut to forget.FULL TIME | @KilmarnockFC 0-2 Nomads (2-3 agg) ITS THE GREATEST WELSH FOOTBALL RESULT OF ALL TIME! WERE GOING TO SERBIA! Say it with us #NomadsNeverDie Connah's Quay Nomads (@the_nomads) July 18, 2019Both sides ended the match with 10 men as Stuart Findlay was shown a straight red for conceding the penalty and then goalscorer Wignall was sent packing in the closing stages.Kilmarnock had worked wonders to qualify for Europe under former boss and now Scotland manager Steve Clarke but this was a humiliating exit.For Connahs Quay and their manager Andy Morrison this was a wonderful result and they proudly march on in the competition.Connahs Quay should have taken an early lead when Michael Wildes low cross was dummied by Declan Poole and ran for the unmarked Morris but from eight yards out and with the goal at his mercy he somehow put his effort wide..@InsallJamie returned to Scotlandand won the penalty that sent us through! Our No.10 pic.twitter.com/9LOGjB1Cuz Connah's Quay Nomads (@the_nomads) July 18, 2019Kilmarnock then spurned chances to make the breakthrough as Rory McKenzie drive forward and slide possession to Greg Taylor but the full-back scuffed his effort goalward and goalkeeper Lewis Brass saved. The rebound came back to McKenzie and he lashed in a shot but Brass was equal to the test as he pulled off a fine save to turn it wide.Taylor was then presented with another chance when Burke pirouetted on the edge of the box to create space and then burst into the penalty area and his cross came to the Scotland international but once again he could not force the ball past Brass.Kilmarnock right-back Stephen ODonnell tested Brass twice in quick succession but the keeper stood firm to keep out his efforts.Connahs Quay wiped out Kilmarnocks one-goal lead five minutes into the second half through a Wignall header.It was a tough night for Angelo Alessio (Jeff Holmes/PA)Declan Poole swung in a dangerous cross from the right flank and Wignall glanced home a header into the bottom corner beyond the despairing dive of Killie goalkeeper Jamie MacDonald.Kilmarnock were still ahead on the away goals rule but now this European tie was on the knife edge.And Connahs Quay Nomads were in the driving seat with 11 minutes to go as they grabbed their second of the night through a Morris penalty.Connahs Quays players celebrate (Jeff Holmes/PA)Sub Jamie Insall broke in behind the Killie defence and was hauled down inside the box by a last-gasp Findlay challenge.The Killie defender was sent off by Hungarian referee Ferenc Karako and from 12-yards out Morris made no mistake.Connahs Quay Nomads were reduced to 10 men with five minutes remaining when Wignall received his marching orders after picking up a second booking following a crunching challenge on Alan Power.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '467a2fc5-cbbe-42fb-b20a-f8c9bc685f5f'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Kilmarnock unlocked by Connah\u2019s Quay in European upset'});

July 18th 2019, 6:23 pm

Candeias heading out of Rangers as club progresses in Europe

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Steven Gerrard has revealed Daniel Candeias is set for the Ibrox exit after the winger admitted he does not want to stay and fight for his Rangers place.The Portuguese attacker is on his way to Turkey to open talks with a club believed to be Genclerbirligi.Gerrard and director of football Mark Allen met with the former Benfica man on Wednesday for a heart-to-heart discussion and made it clear he was still in their plans for the season ahead.But the 31-year-old confessed he was looking for guaranteed action something Gerrard was not prepared to offer after signing Sheyi Ojo, Greg Stewart and Jake Hastie to provide competition on the right flank.Now Gerrard has reluctantly given Candeias permission to fly to Ankara to discuss his move.I had a conversation on Wednesday with Daniel and he said he wanted to go and speak to a team in Turkey, said Gerrard. Weve had an approach and we had a real adult conversation.I said I wanted him to stay and fight for the shirt and be part of the squad but he said he wants to go and explore the situation in Turkey so we reluctantly but respectfully granted him permission.Hes a good man and been a good servant so hes going to speak to the club in Turkey and well see how that one develops.I have to respect Daniel and keep a lot of the conversation private but it boils down to him wanting to be a regular starter as in every single game.At his age he doesnt want to be part of the squad and fight for the shirt without any guarantees so we have to respect his decision but it was Daniels decision to explore this interest.Myself and Mark Allen sat in front of him and echoed that wed like him to stay so well see how it develops in the next 24 to 48 hours.My gut feeling is that he wants to move on. The financial side of it isnt my business but since Ive walked in the door I only want people who are prepared to fight for the shirt and nobody is guaranteed to start.I want people prepared to fight tooth and nail to be part of the XI. Daniels not the best sub and I understand because I wanted to play ever game as a player.But I made it quite clear I wanted him to stay but respected his decision and Ill never stand in anyones way if they want to speak to another team.Candeias was not part of the team which completed the Europa League demolition job on Gibraltan minnows St Josephs with a 6-0 Ibrox win.Joe Aribo put the Light Blues ahead early while an Alfredo Morelos hat-trick and Jermain Defoes double sealed a 10-goal aggregate triumph that now sets up a revenge clash with Progres Neiderkorn, who dumped Pedro Caixinhas side from the competition two years ago.But Gerrard admits his side took their time to get going.The first half was quite boring, slow and predictable but the second half was really entertaining and much better, he said. Certain people in the starting 11 were quite nervous and tentative and went for the safe option but we were a lot more positive in the second half and entertained the fans.St Josephs coach Raul Procopio said: The result was to be expected because we lost 4-0 in the first leg and Rangers are a world-class team.But Im very proud of my team and its been a dream come true to play at Ibrox.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Newport, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '183c2d56-575a-4c7c-9661-4c225d19eb3e'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Candeias heading out of Rangers as club progresses in Europe'});

July 18th 2019, 6:23 pm

Rangers progress to Progres clash as Morelos scores a hat-trick

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Rangers set up a Europa League revenge mission with Progres Neiderkorn as they completed their demolition job on St Josephs with a 6-0 win at Ibrox.Alfredo Morelos struck his third Gers hat-trick as Jermain Defoes double and Joe Aribo strike sealed a 10-goal aggregate triumph.And now having swept aside the minnows of Gibraltar, the Light Blues will welcome their old foes from Luxembourg to Glasgow next Thursday as they look to lay to rest the Neiderkorn ghosts of two years ago.Thankfully for the Ibrox faithful, the team now managed by Steven Gerrard bear little resemblance to Pedro Caixinhas team of that time.The Portuguese boss presided over arguably the clubs worst ever result when Rangers crashed out to the Grand Duchy part-timers in the opening qualifier of the 2017/18 campaign.But it would be an even bigger shock should Progres repeat the feat against a squad now bursting with attacking options.Last weeks crushing win under the Rock of Gibraltar allowed Gerrard the luxury of sweeping changes for the Glasgow return, with only Connor Goldson and Glen Kamara keeping their places.New signings George Edmundson and Jake Hastie came in for their debuts while Aribo, Matt Polster and Greg Stewart were making their competitive home bows in Govan.And it took just two and a half minutes for Aribo to open his Ibrox account.The entire St Josephs defence was caught cold as Greg Docherty slid a cute reverse pass in behind for the former Charlton midfielder to bury low into the net.As expected it was one-way traffic from there on in but there was still a hint of last weeks first-half display as Gers again made heavy work of adding to their lead.The Ibrox support had turn up expecting a goal-fest but Gerrard did not look to perturbed as a series of chances went begging, knowing his men are not yet up to full sharpness.Stewart looked rusty as failed to finish a close-range header while Morelos carelessly wandered offside on 27 minutes as he collected a Docherty pass, with the flag already up by the time Hastie stuck the Colombians cross into the net.Andy Halliday clipped a free-kick just past the far post, while Hastie got his feet all wrong as he skewed another golden chance wide.But the second did arrive just before the interval. Hastie fired a corner to Goldson at the corner of the six-yard box and the defenders flick fell perfectly for Morelos to head home at the back post.Morelos scored again from the penalty spot 12 minutes into the second half after Docherty was bundled over in the box by Daniel Guerrero.And last seasons top scorer notched his fourth of the new campaign already on 66 minutes as he guided home from yet another teasing Docherty delivery from the right flank.Having claimed the match ball, Morelos immediately made way for Defoe but the 36-year-old ensured Rangers lost none of their killer touch.Number five was a carbon copy of the fourth, this time with Polster acting as provider and Defoe the finisher.The Englishman then grabbed his 10th goal in Rangers colours late on after a neat move involving Scott Arfield and Stewart opened up St Josephs yet again.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Andy Newport, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '5f7fa14d-8301-469d-bb39-2380a491a09f'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Rangers progress to Progres clash as Morelos scores a hat-trick'});

July 18th 2019, 5:25 pm

McInnes pleased as Aberdeen make European progress

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Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes hailed his players character after they shrugged off an early setback to progress in the Europa League qualifiers.The Dons fell behind inside two minutes against RoPS Rovaniemi in Finland after seeing a two-goal advantage cut in half in the dying seconds of the first leg.But Sam Cosgroves first-half penalty and Lewis Fergusons stoppage-time strike earned a 2-1 win and 4-2 aggregate success.McInnes told Red TV: They scored in the last 30 seconds (of the first game) and the first 30 seconds, everything else has been pretty good for me.I am finding out a lot about my team, its a new squad and we are trying to find our feet fitness wise and with the familiarity.Last week we should have been out of sight and the tie should have been far more comfortable here.The first goal I thought it might have been a foul on (Scott) McKenna and then the shot took a wicked deflection and loops over Joe (Lewis). That happens.For such a young team, young boys who probably wouldnt have been in that situation before, its a big deal for us and a lot of pressure on them to deal with it. And they just dealt with the game. We controlled the game.They had their moments and they gambled towards the end, throwing bodies forward, we had to defend deeper and counter-attack. When composure, calmness and good decision-making was needed, we gave it.McInnes will have summer signings Craig Bryson and Funso Ojo available in his midfield for the second qualifying round againstGeorgian side Chikhura Sachkhere.He added: While we are trying to work towards being at our best, its good we can still overcome challenges.We had 33 shots in the first leg and probably something similar here. We could have made it easier on ourselves by taking the chances we missed but the work from box to box calmness in possession, use of the ball from the back, is everything I want from my team.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'e4323188-ce4a-4e66-8c44-9b57eec3f879'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'McInnes pleased as Aberdeen make European progress'});

July 18th 2019, 4:09 pm

Aberdeen see off RoPS to progress in Europa League qualifiers

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Lewis Ferguson scored with the last kick of the ball to earn Aberdeen victory in Finland and ensure they progress in the Europa League qualifiers.The Dons suffered a shocking start to the second leg, with RoPS Rovaniemi netting inside two minutes to put themselves in the driving seat on the away goals rule.But Sam Cosgrove converted a 27th-minute penalty and Aberdeen endured precious few scares before Ferguson broke clear right at the end of four minutes of stoppage-time to seal a 2-1 victory.The 4-2 aggregate win sends Derek McInnes and his players into the second qualifying round to take on Georgian side ChikhuraSachkhere.It was job done for Aberdeen in the capital of Lapland but the tie proved far closer than it should have been.The Dons had 33 efforts on target in the first leg at Pittodrie before seeing a 2-0 lead cut in half with almost the final kick of the ball.Their advantage was wiped out completely at the start of the second leg when Tarik Kada held off Scott McKenna before firing a shot that deflected in off Ash Taylor.Aberdeen set about peppering the home defence with a series of crosses, with Niall McGinn and Ryan Hedges delivering several threatening balls.Ferguson came close in the 17th minute when he headed inches beyond the post following Shay Logans centre.And the former Hamilton player soon won the spot-kick after tempting ex-Kilmarnock defender Mahamadou Sissoko into making a reckless penalty-box challenge.Cosgrove dispatched the penalty past former Inverness goalkeeper Antonio Reguero.The striker missed two great chances either side of half-time, firstly sending a free header wide from eight yards following a Hedges cross, and then missing the target from four yards after getting above his marker to meet John Gallaghers delivery.Hedges and Taylor threatened from long range and McGinn caused panic for the hosts three times in quick succession, delivering dangerous crosses either side of a clever chip which the back-tracking Reguero tipped over.The tie remained delicately poised though and Aberdeen gradually retreated as the Finns threw men forward in search of a goal that would take it to extra-time.Joe Lewis saved well from Youness Rahimi and Ferguson raced clear in the dying seconds and saw his deflected effort land over the line after having his initial effort saved.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '3196fd0b-6758-4617-a954-e0ace71fcb42'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:match-reports'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Aberdeen see off RoPS to progress in Europa League qualifiers'});

July 18th 2019, 2:38 pm

Simunovic banned for two Premiership matches after red card in Swiss friendly

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Jozo Simunovic will miss the first two matches of the Ladbrokes Premiership season following his recent red card in a friendly in Switzerland.The Scottish Football Association confirmed the defender would be suspended for two matches after he was sent off against St Gallen on July 2.Simunovic will miss the season opener against St Johnstone at Parkhead on August 3, and a trip to Motherwell seven days later.The centre-back was initially shown a yellow card for a head-high challenge on Boris Babic, but the colour was changed to red following a VAR review. The video system was being trialled ahead of its introduction in the Swiss top flight.A domestic suspension will now apply after the Swiss football authorities reported the sending-off to their Scottish counterparts.The development will come as a blow to manager Neil Lennon, who has been employing a makeshift defence following the summer departures of Filip Benkovic, Dedryck Boyata and Mikael Lustig.Midfielder Nir Bitton played in central defence alongside Simunovic in their opening Champions League qualifiers against Sarajevo with Kristoffer Ajer shifting to an unfamiliar right-back role. New centre-back Christopher Jullien is just short of match fitness.Lennon is hoping to strengthen his defence before the suspension and revealed on Wednesday night he was closing in on his fourth summer signing.Reports in Israel claimed a deal had been agreed for versatile defenderHatem Abd Elhamed to move to Glasgow from Hapoel Beer Sheva.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Gavin McCafferty, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '5d2e67fe-a061-412f-aa8c-9b51d1b7fd6f'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Simunovic banned for two Premiership matches after red card in Swiss friendly'});

July 18th 2019, 1:38 pm

Bury hit with big points deduction after agreeing financial future

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Bury will start the League One season with a 12-point deduction after entering a Company Voluntary Agreement, the EFL has announced.The Shakers, promoted last season, saw a winding-up petition over unpaid debts adjourned at the High Court last month and have now secured their future with the CVA.The club, however, will kick-off the forthcoming campaign with the points penalty.Following receipt of notice that the Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) has been passed in respect of Bury Football Club, the EFL can confirm that the club has now suffered an insolvency event and will be subject to a 12-point deduction, said an EFL statement.In accordance with EFL regulations, the sporting sanction will take effect immediately and the club will start the League One season on minus 12 points. The club has seven days to appeal.The EFL will now continue its discussions with the clubs ownership with the aim of achieving a long-term future for the club.Earlier on Thursday, Bury chairman Steve Dale revealed the cash-strapped club would be safe after agreeing the CVA.Dale, who was involved in an angry confrontation with a group of supporters during Saturdays friendly at Nantwich Town, confirmed the news in a statement on the clubs official website.He said: Today was a major day for our beloved club, the old girl is safe. The CVA was passed, so our future is secured, as I said I would.We have worked tirelessly to achieve the result today whilst taking a lot of flak. Some might say our methods were questionable but we can all pass comment with hindsight. My job was to save Bury FC and thats done. We have other hurdles but the main one is complete.Over the coming weeks, our fans will see the truth appearing once the police have completed their enquiries and arrests, and they will realise who had the clubs best interest at heart. The facts as always will outweigh the social media spin and lies.Dale, who revealed the club is working with the EFL to deal with outstanding issues, hit out at his critics and those who had brought his family into an acrimonious situation.He said: The social media garbage pedalled by the same few is not needed and bears no relation to the truth.I cant see how attacking my family has anything to do with Bury FC issues, but again its the same mindless few. I accept emotions can run high its a passionate sport but if we can put these things behind us and all get together, we will ensure our club has a great season in unity.Bury begin their League One campaign at home against MK Dons on August 3. League One rivals Bolton will also start with a 12-point deficit due to their own financial problems.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '966ee937-776f-48e3-bc5d-d393a29ebd5a'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Bury hit with big points deduction after agreeing financial future'});

July 18th 2019, 1:38 pm

Brighton defender Leo Ostigard joins St Pauli on loan

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Brighton defender Leo Ostigard has joined 2. Bundesliga side FC St Pauli on loan.The 19-year-old, who made two Premier League appearances last season for Albion, will spend the 2019/20 season with the Hamburg-based club, who play in the second division in Germany.This is an excellent loan move for Leo and one which comes at the right time for him, said Brighton Under-23 coach Simon Rusk.Im sure hell learn valuable lessons from a tough season in the Bundesliga 2.Leo works extremely hard on the training pitch and his commitment to improve is clear to see.We will closely monitor his progress in Germany and we are looking forward to seeing how he progresses as he takes on an exciting new challenge.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '754524fe-e1f0-4406-952d-47b51ed3a68d'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Brighton defender Leo Ostigard joins St Pauli on loan'});

July 18th 2019, 1:20 pm

How Arsenal have come out on top in north London fight for William Saliba

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The Gunners were favourites to land the 18-year-old’s signature until a late swoop from Spurs threw their plans into turmoil.However, sources have told ESPN FC that Unai Emery’s side will win the race for the centre-back despite the efforts of their north London neighbours.Saliba has chosen Arsenal over Tottenham after being convinced by the project at the Emirates Stadium and will join the club in a €30 million deal.He will sign a five-year contract before being sent back to Saint-Etienne on loan for the 2019/20 campaign.Arsenal are expected to confirm the deal soon, with only minor details needing to be finalised.Now read...QUIZ!Can you name the 28 managers who've bossed three or more Premier League clubs?FEATURE11 world-class players who nearly joined unfashionable Premier League clubs

July 18th 2019, 12:16 pm

Tottenham defender Danny Rose wanted by giants in France and Germany

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The 29-year-old has been left out of the Spurs squad for their pre-season tour to Singapore as he looks to find a new club.Sky Sports News believes that the Ligue 1 champions are at the front of the queue for his signature as things stand.Spurs have set a £20 million asking price for the experienced defender, who joined the north London club from Leeds United in 2007.PSG could face competition from Bundesliga outfit Schalke as interest builds.Fulham’s Ryan Sessegnon has been lined up as a replacement if Rose leaves the club this summer.Now read...QUIZ!Can you name the 28 managers who've bossed three or more Premier League clubs?FEATURE11 world-class players who nearly joined unfashionable Premier League clubs

July 18th 2019, 12:05 pm

Atletico boss Simeone a ‘massive’ factor in Trippier transfer

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Kieran Trippier has revealed the absoluteprivilege of working under Diego Simeone played a huge part in his decision to join Atletico Madrid.The England defender was officially presented by Atletico on Thursday afternoon after leaving Tottenham to sign for the Spanish giants on a three-year deal for a reported 20million.The 28-year-oldsays moving to Spain fulfils a long-held ambition of his and he pledged to give his all for the club and new boss Simeone, who he holds in the highest regard. @trippier2 is our new number 23! #ApaAtleti #WelcomeTrippier pic.twitter.com/UpG3nJdiE1 Atltico de Madrid (@atletienglish) July 18, 2019Asked how much his decision to join Atletico was influenced by the chance to play for the most successful coach in Rojiblancos history, Trippier said: He was massive.From watching Atletico over the years you see what he demands of his team, the work ethic. They give everything for the team, the badge. Its like a big family here and I wanted to be a part of this.For me, hes one of the best managers in the world and its anabsoluteprivilege to play for him and give everything I can for him. Diego Simeone has led Atletico Madrid to a host of trophies (Nick Potts/PA)He added: Obviously the Premier League is one of the best leagues in the world, but when Atletico Madrid were interested I didnt think twice.It was a great opportunity for myself, my family, to come and live in Madrid and experience it.Me and Mauricio (Tottenham boss Pochettino) had a conversation about my future. I explained there was a big opportunity at Atletico Madrid and it was an opportunity that I didnt want to turn down. Trippier joins a relatively small group of English players to try their luck in Spain and is determined to make the most of the experience.Trophies are obviously high on his agenda, but the former Burnley full-back insists his first port of call is to learn the language as soon as possible.Trippier, who will wear the number 23 shirt at Atletico, the same number compatriot David Beckham wore at Real Madrid, said: (Its a source of) pride and a great challenge for me to come here. @trippier2 will become the 11th English player to have played in #LaLigaSantander this century. Can you name the other ? pic.twitter.com/31tBddbaiW LaLiga (@LaLigaEN) July 18, 2019The most important thing is to get involved in the culture of the players and learn the language.My main priority is to learn the language straight away, to make it easier for my family and just enjoy playing for Atletico and living in Madrid.Ive always wanted to speak Spanish anyway and this gives me a better opportunity to do that.Bury-born Trippier was on Manchester Citys books as a youngster before moving to Burnley in 2011 and then Tottenham in 2015.Trippier was part of the Spurs side that lost the Champions League final to Liverpool at the Wanda Metropolitano in June (Peter Byrne/PA)His last competitive game for Spurs came in Junes Champions League final defeat to Liverpool at the Wanda Metropolitano a venue he will now be calling home.Trippier added of his decision to leave England: Ive always wanted to play abroad, especially LaLiga, since I was young and Ive got a great opportunity now and its one that Im going to really enjoy and give my all.Im delighted to be here and Im looking forward to exciting times ahead and trying to help the team achieve great things.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '23bcbcbb-ff5b-46d6-8a06-68a024d80917'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk,paservice:sport:world'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Atletico boss Simeone a \u2018massive\u2019 factor in Trippier transfer'});

July 18th 2019, 12:05 pm

Bury future secured, says club chairman Steve Dale

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Bury chairman Steve Dale has revealed the cash-strapped club is safe after a company voluntary arrangement was agreed.The Shakers saw a winding up petition over unpaid debts adjourned at the High Court last month and have now secured their future with the CVA.Dale, who was involved in an angry confrontation with a group of supporters during Saturdays friendly at Nantwich Town, confirmed the news in a statement on the League One clubs official website.He said: Today was a major day for our beloved club, the old girl is safe. The CVA was passed, so our future is secured, as I said I would.We have worked tirelessly to achieve the result today whilst taking a lot of flak. Some might say our methods were questionable but we can all pass comment with hindsight. My job was to save Bury FC and thats done. We have other hurdles but the main one is complete.Over the coming weeks, our fans will see the truth appearing once the police have completed their enquiries and arrests, and they will realise who had the clubs best interest at heart. The facts as always will outweigh the social media spin and lies.Dale, who revealed the club is working with the EFL to deal with outstanding issues, hit out at his critics and those who had brought his family into an acrimonious situation.He said: The social media garbage pedalled by the same few is not needed and bears no relation to the truth.I cant see how attacking my family has anything to do with Bury FC issues, but again its the same mindless few. I accept emotions can run high its a passionate sport but if we can put these things behind us and all get together, we will ensure our club has a great season in unity.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '2ec13ce0-3802-471e-a465-876e5f99f959'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Bury future secured, says club chairman Steve Dale'});

July 18th 2019, 12:05 pm

Gallagher reaping rewards of Motherwell move ahead of facing former boss Hopkin

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Declan Gallagher believes he is already reaping the rewards of his move to Motherwell as he prepares to face one of the men who made it possible.The defender is set to come up against his former Livingston manager, David Hopkin, when Motherwell host Morton in the Betfred Cup on Friday.Hopkin re-signed Gallagher for Livi after the centre-back was released from prison in January 2017 after being convicted of assault.The pair enjoyed consecutive promotions together before Gallagher enjoyed an ever-present season in the top flight with Livi, earning a move to Motherwell with his impressive displays.Hopkin spent some of last season as Bradford manager and got his Cappielow reign off to a flying start with a 6-1 victory over Dumbarton.Gallagher said: Obviously its my old manager, David Hopkin, so I know what they are going to be like: they are going to be organised, they are going to be a fit team, they are going to be right in your faces. He has made a big impact already with a great result.A lot of people say he was long ball but its nothing to do with that, he likes playing in the opposition half and working hard and making it hard for other teams and there is nothing wrong with that.Ill not look forward to seeing him if we get beat, thats for sure, he will try and rub it in my face but seriously, Im definitely looking forward to seeing him, he is a good guy and a good character in our changing room. So it will be nice to have a wee chat with him.He signed me the second time for Livingston and gave me my chance back in football so I owe him quite a lot.I might not be here today if he hadnt given me that first chance.I think I repaid him with us getting the League One title and getting up through the Championship play-offs. But I definitely owe him a lot.Gallagher believes the Fir Park set-up will help him improve.The 28-year-old said: The boys have been really welcoming and all the staff have been really good. Its a lot more professional than what I was used to, everything is a lot more organised.I think already I can see benefits to my game working with the sports scientist and the coaching and information Im taking in every training session, its affecting my game and I can see the improvements.Im getting certain stuff that I wasnt getting before, getting my proteins in, better food and getting a bit more one-to-one time, things that are specific to what I need on the pitch instead of doing it collectively.Motherwell will be without striker Chris Long (concussion) and midfielder Casper Sloth, who has been allowed time off to deal with personal issues in Denmark. Devante Cole is also a fitness doubt.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Gavin McCafferty, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '0859ff64-c977-44f4-a0e6-7c9d6146326b'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Gallagher reaping rewards of Motherwell move ahead of facing former boss Hopkin'});

July 18th 2019, 12:05 pm

Tottenham to break transfer record AGAIN – and Arsenal could benefit

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The Argentina international has been heavily linked with a move to north London and is eager to link up with Mauricio Pochettino.According to the Mirror, Spurs are finally ready to step up their interest in the midfielder.The Premier League club’s £55m capture of Lyon’s Tanguy Ndombele earlier this summer was a new club record, but the fee they will hand Betis for Lo Celso is set to eclipse that.The La Liga outfit have already brought in a replacement for the 23-year-old with the £22m arrival of Nabil Fekir from Lyon.Lo Celso’s arrival could be good news for Arsenal, as it signals the end of Spurs’ interest in Real Madrid midfielder Dani Ceballos.The Spain international now appears likely to join the Gunners on loan after Tottenham decided they didn’t want to be viewed as a stepping stone by the player, who is eyeing a future first-team spot at the Bernabeu.Now read...QUIZ!Can you name the 28 managers who've bossed three or more Premier League clubs?FEATURE11 world-class players who nearly joined unfashionable Premier League clubs

July 18th 2019, 11:00 am

Romelu Lukaku set for Manchester United stay as Inter Milan find cheaper alternative

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Antonio Conte wants the Belgium international to lead the line for his side next season, but there remains a significant distance between the two clubs’ valuation of the player.Tuttosport claims that former Palermo and Napoli forward Cavani is the first alternative to Lukaku for the Italians.He would be a less pricey option at the age of 32 and with one year left to run on his deal in France, while he has a proven track record in Serie A.The report adds that during a meeting between United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward and Inter sporting director Piero Ausilio in London, the Red Devils demanded €88 million for Lukaku.Inter are now considering an offer made up of €60 million up front and €15 million of bonuses spread over three years.Read more...QUIZ!Can you name the 50 most expensive centre-back transfers of all time?RANKED!The 14 worst kits of the 2019/20 season

July 18th 2019, 10:50 am

Newcastle boss Bruce vows to win over doubters

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New Newcastle head coach Steve Bruce has vowed to win over the doubters after admitting he has always regretted turning down the job the first time he was offered it.The 58-year-old was installed as Rafael Benitezs replacement on Wednesday as angry fans vented their displeasure at owner Mike Ashleys running of the club.Corbridge-born Bruce, who grew up in Wallsend, never played for the club he supported as a boy and revealed the chance to step into the hot-seat was one he simply could not refuse a second time. Steve Bruce spoke to NUFC TV after his first training session in Shanghai today and explained why he couldn't turn down the opportunity to become the Magpies' head coach.Watch the full interview: https://t.co/g8XyEb78FZ #NUFC #PLAsiaTrophy pic.twitter.com/rpagUxOeyG Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) July 18, 2019Speaking to nufcTV in Shanghai, where he will take charge of his first game against West Ham in the Premier League Asia Trophy on Saturday, he said: Im like every other Geordie, Ive lived the dream.If you cant play for them, then of course if youre a Geordie, what better thing than to take the number one seat? Im delighted to have been given the opportunity and Ill do my best.I know in some peoples eyes, Im not Rafa and I understand there are big shoes to fill. But believe me, Ill give it everything I possibly can and hopefully prove the doubters wrong.Bruce, who met the players on Thursday just hours after his arrival in China, might have managed the Magpies much earlier in his career having been approached when Sir Bobby Robson was sacked in 2004 during his time in charge at Birmingham. It was a decision he lived to regret and is delighted to get a second bite at the cherry, even if he knows he is walking into a storm on Tyneside.He said: The easy thing for me would have been to say no, but at this stage in my career nowBack a few years ago, I regretted it. I regretted it and it lingered around me for years, when Sir Bobby left. To be given the opportunity again, it was simply something I had to take, I had to grasp it.I knew it was going to be difficult as I said, the easy thing would have been to say no. I just hope that people will show the respect, which obviously you only gain by getting a few results and doing the job, but hopefully that will go hand in hand.Last seasons leading scorer Ayoze Perez has left for Leicester (Richard Sellers/PA)With just three weeks of the transfer window remaining, Newcastle are running out of time to plug the substantial gap in the squad left by the departures of Salomon Rondon and Ayoze Perez among others.Dwight Gayle missed Wednesdays 4-0 defeat by Wolves with a calf problem and Yoshinori Muto is currently the only fit senior striker, although the club is understood to be in advanced talks with Hoffenheim over 22-year-old Brazilian Joelinton.Bruce said: When you get the call, the first thing you look at is the squad, and of course were aware that weve lost Rondon and Ayoze, so were short in that little area and were working on that.But the squad is littered with some very, very good players and thats why its been able to stay in the Premier League. Its my job now to try to move us forward as best as we possibly can and Ill do my utmost to try to achieve that.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Damian Spellman, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'a9bc486f-5e9d-4ddf-a2be-efbe7b138dee'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Newcastle boss Bruce vows to win over doubters'});

July 18th 2019, 10:50 am

El Hadji-Diouf says Liverpool "have to be realistic" about "impossible" Premier League title hopes

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The Anfield club won the Champions League and finished one point behind Premier League winners Manchester City last term.But Diouf, who played for the Reds from 2002-05, is doubtful that Klopp will be capable of getting a similar level of performance from his players next season."They were very good last season,” he told A Bola.“I can’t believe they can play like this next season.They missed the chance to win the title.“Every season is different and the way they have done it... it will be impossible to repeat such a good course."Their level of performance was incredible, and looking at how they lost the title of English championswith a distance of one point... we have to be realistic.“City is a great rival because they struggled a lot to get to the title.In my opinion, Liverpool will not be able to produce the same levelthey produced last season.”The former Senegal international had warmer words for compatriot Sadio Mané and his team-mate Mohamed Salah."They are the two best players in the world and their contributions to Liverpool can’t be underestimated," he said.Now read...QUIZ! Can you name the 28 managers who've bossed three or more Premier League clubs?FEATURE 11 world-class players who nearly joined unfashionable Premier League clubs

July 18th 2019, 10:50 am

It's 'practically impossible' for Real Madrid to sign Paul Pogba this summer

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Paul Pogba will most likely be staying at Manchester United this summer, according toMarca.Pogba’s potential move from Manchester United to Real Madrid has been made even harderthis week, accordingto reports.Manchester United's record signing cast doubt over his future at the club last month when he commented that he was considering: "a new challenge".However, Spanish publicationMarcanow believe it has become‘practically impossible’ for Los Blancos to sign the United midfielder.According to ESPN, Real Madrid president Florentino Perez informed coach Zinedine Zidane it will be "very difficult" to sign the midfielder this summer.Zidane is said to understand United's position and, barring an unexpected u-turn, doesn't expect Pogba will wear a Real Madrid shirt this season.Despite the midfielderwanting to leave,it seems Madrid may be forced to look at other options this summer.Ajax’s Donny van de Beek and Tottenham’s Christian Eriksen are on their potential wish list.NOW READ...NEWS!Romelu Lukaku set for Manchester United stay as Inter Milan find cheaper alternativeQUIZ!Can you name the 50 most expensive centre-back transfers of all time?RANKED!The 14 worst kits of the 2019/20 season

July 18th 2019, 10:50 am

De Vita handed new Livingston contract before joining Partick Thistle on loan

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Livingston have handed Rafa De Vita a new contract before loaning him to Partick Thistle.The forward has signed a contract with Livi until June 2021 and a season-long loan with the Jags, although his parent club can recall him in January.The 31-year-old former Swindon playermade three substitute appearances late last season after recovering from cruciate ligament damage suffered during the previous campaigns play-offs.Manager Gary Holt told Livingstons website:Rafa came and spoke to (assistant manager) Davie (Martindale) and I as he was concerned about the amount of game time that we could offer him for the coming season.Having been out the vast majority of last season Rafa was determined to be playing football week in week out, and at this stage that was something we could not offer him.We all felt that to get Rafa back to his best it was probably best that he got out playing football every week at a decent level.We all feel that this scenario is a win-win for everyone: Rafa gets to play football and hopefully recover the form that seen him star for us in our successful Championship season.Livingston has secured his signature for a further year and hopefully the much needed game time that Rafa will receive will see him return to the football club ready to go for another season, hopefully in the Scottish Premiership with Livingston FC.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', 'c9d1d5b4-f39b-4f05-91f2-5aa1d0db1ac1'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'De Vita handed new Livingston contract before joining Partick Thistle on loan'});

July 18th 2019, 9:17 am

Sturridge banned from football for two weeks for breaching betting regulations

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Former Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge has been handed a two-week suspension from football and a 75,000 fine for breaching betting regulations, the Football Association has announced.An independent regulatory commission found that Sturridge, capped 26 times by England, had given his brother inside information on a possible move to Sevilla during the January 2018 transfer window.However, nine of the 11 charges were dismissed against Sturridge, who is free to resume his career on July 31 as four weeks of a six-week ban are suspended.The FA is appealing the regulatory commissions findings as well as the sanctions handed down to the former Manchester City and Chelsea forward, believing them to be too lenient.The @FA is today publishing the written reasons of the Regulatory Commission which heard the case brought against Daniel Sturridge, formerly of Liverpool Football Club. Full details here: https://t.co/dJfgZwhwXz pic.twitter.com/PFnpQII5un FA Spokesperson (@FAspokesperson) July 18, 2019An FA statement said: Mr Sturridge faced 11 charges. Nine of those charges (1a, 1b, 2, 5, 6a, 6b and 7-9) concerned alleged breaches of the inside information rule, in that, it was said, Mr Sturridge had provided inside information to friends and family about his possible transfer moves in January 2018, which information had then been used for, or in relation to, betting. Those charges were dismissed by the Regulatory Commission.The regulatory commission found proved charges 3 and 4, which alleged that, in that same transfer window, Sturridge had instructed his brother, Leon, to bet on a possible move by him (Daniel) to Sevilla.In issuing that instruction, the regulatory commission found that, as a matter of fact, Sturridge had provided his brother with inside information for that purpose.By way of sanction, the Regulatory Commission imposed on Sturridge a six-week suspension from participation in any domestic football matches (including friendlies), such suspension being effective from July 17 2019.The FA is appealing against the sanction handed to Sturridge (Nick Potts/PA)Four weeks of that ban have been suspended until August 31 2020, meaning that Sturridge will be able to resume participating by July 31 2019 in the event he commits no further breaches of FA Rule E8.In addition, the Regulatory Commission imposed a fine of 75,000 on Sturridge.The FA respectfully disagrees with the regulatory commissions findings and will be appealing against the charges which were dismissed and the sanction which was imposed.Sturridge ended up switching to West Brom for the second half of the 2017-18 campaign after a move to LaLiga side Sevilla broke down.The 29-year-old is currently without a club after being released by Liverpool at the end of last season, having scored 67 times in 160 appearances during his six-and-a-half year spell at Anfield.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By PA Sport Staff'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '56d10550-7f6b-4aff-afc6-49f05b03758e'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:football,paservice:sport:uk'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Sturridge banned from football for two weeks for breaching betting regulations'});

July 18th 2019, 8:45 am

Robinson pleased with Motherwell’s ‘stability’ as he signs new two-year deal

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Motherwell manager Stephen Robinson claimed the clubs stability and togetherness were major assets after signing a two-year contract extension.The 44-year-old and assistant Keith Lasley have agreed new deals which tie them to the club until 2022.Robinson took over in March 2017 soon after returning to the club for a second spell on the coaching staff and, after steering the club away from relegation danger, has led them to two mid-table Ladbrokes Premiership finishes and two cup finals.The Northern Irishman said: Im very, very happy to commit my future here. Its a fantastic football club and people have been very good to me. I still see us moving forward and developing.Theres not a lot of stability in football clubs but clubs that do have that stability, if you look back, seem to be the ones that are relatively successful.And we have been that in terms of what is expected at Motherwell. We have been to two cup finals, developed a lot of young players, and brought a lot of money in that has helped keep us on a steady footing.We are looking to keep moving forward, developing young players and bringing in exciting players to sell.Robinson had a bruising spell as Oldham manager after leaving the Motherwell and Northern Ireland coaching teams, being sacked six months after taking over a club with only seven contracted players.Robinson has had a similarly busy time in the transfer market given the turnaround in players in each of his three summers as Well manager but has found support and understanding from the clubs board.The club have brought in transfer income from the likes of Cedric Kipre and Louis Moult as well as bringing through a series of young players.Oldham was an experience, he said. I probably learnt more there in six months than I would in a lifetime. It stands you in good stead when you do encounter problems.Theres a lot of issues that you have to deal with as a manager but this is a football club where people do things together.Ive got total support from the board, fans have been terrific with me, and it does make life easier when thats the case.The model of the club is to develop young players and sell them, and keep bringing in good value players that we can create assets from.The football club exists on selling players, we are fan-owned and it has to be that case.Its frustrating at times because you think you build a very good side and it gets broken up. This is probably the third squad we have put together with eight or nine players.But its a challenge that I very much enjoy. Its not a surprise, we know thats going to happen.And we have aspirations of trying to get in the top six and pushing on and still trying to play the football we played in the last six months of the season.(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-72310761-1', 'auto', {'name': 'pacontentapi'}); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'referrer', location.origin); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension1', 'By Gavin McCafferty, PA'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension2', '71f6de27-2a6a-488e-ac4c-bdf328f35d8e'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension3', 'paservice:sport,paservice:sport:club-news,paservice:sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension6', 'story'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension7', 'composite'); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension8', null); ga('pacontentapi.set', 'dimension9', 'sport:football'); ga('pacontentapi.send', 'pageview', { 'location': location.href, 'page': (location.pathname + location.search + location.hash), 'title': 'Robinson pleased with Motherwell\u2019s \u2018stability\u2019 as he signs new two-year deal'});

July 18th 2019, 8:45 am
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