Friday, November 04, 2011
The Premier League returns after a busy midweek of European action, and Manchester City have the opportunity to build on a 3-0 victory against Villarreal in the UEFA Champions League when they travel to the capital to face Queens Park Rangers. City are currently five points clear and go to Loftus Road on the back of five consecutive league wins, although QPR recently disposed of Chelsea on their home patch and will be fired up for the challenge. Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool all have home matches that they will expect to take maximum points from, while Chelsea face lowly Blackburn. Tottenham, along with City and Liverpool, are the in-form side in the top flight and they lock horns with London rivals Fulham on Sunday as Wolves play Wigan earlier in the afternoon.
Premier League Spotlight
Paul Merson's Predictions
Real Madrid will be looking to maintain their near-perfect form when they turn their attention from the Champions League to the La Liga, where they host Osasuna. The Sunday evening game sees Barcelona, one point behind Real, travel to Athletic Bilbao.
Ronaldinho began his career with hometown club Gremio before leaving for a decade in Europe that brought him worldwide fame and success. And when he decided to return to Brazil after his time in Europe, he chose not to obey the pleas of Gremio fans and instead signed with wealthier Flamengo. This did not sit well with Gremio supporters.
Fulham 4 - 1 Wisla Krakow
Jamie Jackson at Craven Cottage
Birmingham City 2 - 2 Club Brugge
Stuart James at St. Andrew's
Rubin Kazan 1 - 0 Tottenham
Highly-rated FC Dallas winger Brek Shea will spend a month training with Arsenal in a bid to earn experience of the European game.
Odds on him ending up in here...?
For a manager granted the not especially complimentary nickname 'Tinkerbell' by fans impatient of his use of squad rotation, there is a happy wealth of options from which to select Sir Alex Ferguson's greatest ever XI. One thing for certain is that he probably wouldn't agree with this selection. 4-4-2 will be the formation, as it has been, with certain nuances, the default for his tenure.
Thursday, November 03, 2011
Mario Balotelli has been in sizzling form leading up to Fireworks Night.
And it appears he is going to steal the show on Saturday judging by this huge tribute to the Manchester City star.
Because a 30ft effigy of the striker has been unveiled that will be torched at a huge celebration in Kent.
Former England captain says he has completed his US mission off the field but that he is still missing one thing: a trophy.
David Beckham targets MLS Cup as his LA Galaxy adventure nears an end.
Tottenham and Stoke City will be out to continue their unbeaten runs in the Europa League on Thursday, while Paris-Saint Germain need a win.
Wisla Krakow go to Craven Cottage...
Key games in Sir Alex Ferguson's 25 years at Old Trafford: Manchester United 1-1 Chelsea (United win 6-5 on pens)
In the build-up to Sir Alex Ferguson's 25th anniversary at Old Trafford, here is the third of our series of archive match reports from the key games which have defined his extraordinary career at Manchester United.
Date: Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Competition: Champions League (final).
Venue: Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow. Att: 69,552
Result: Manchester United 1-1 Chelsea (AET) (United win 6-5 on penalties)
Manchester United: Van der Sar; Brown (Anderson 120), Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra; Hargreaves, Scholes (Giggs 87), Carrick, Ronaldo; Tevez, Rooney (Nani 101).
Subs: Kuszczak (g), O'Shea, Fletcher, Silvestre.
Chelsea: Cech; Essien, Carvalho, Terry, A Cole; Makelele (Belletti 120); Ballack, Lampard; J Cole (Anelka 99), Drogba, Malouda (Kalou 92).
Subs: Cudicini (g), Shevchenko, Mikel, Alex.
Referee: L Michel (Slovakia).
Villarreal 0 - 3 Manchester City
Sid Lowe at Stadio El Madrigal
Daniel Taylor at Stadio El Madrigal
Manchester United 2 - 0 Otelul Galati
Paul Wilson at Old Trafford
Will Tidey at Old Trafford
Bayern Munich 3 - 2 Napoli
Inter Milan 2 - 1 Lille
Lyon 0 - 2 Real Madrid
Best & Worst of the Round
Although they finished fifth and fourth in La Liga, both were out of sorts when they met Porto. Sevilla had failed to win any of its previous five games, and even then lost only on away goals; while Villarreal looked exhausted and had begun a slump from which it is yet to recover. That's not Villas-Boas' fault, but it is a gap in his credentials.
Sammy Ameobi, who plays for Newcastle alongside older brother Shola, was called a "n****r'' by a follower with the username @JonnnnyPhipps after the footballer tweeted a photo of a black pair of boots.
Wednesday, November 02, 2011
Mario Balotelli is, and always has been, a reflection of his surroundings. Born in Palermo on the Italian island of Sicily in 1990, his Ghanaian immigrant parents moved north to Brescia almost immediately. Struggling with health issues and stuck in cramped living conditions, the Italian social services recommended Mario was fostered and aged just three he became a Balotelli after being informally adopted by Francesco and Silvio.
Genk 1 - 1 Chelsea
Dominic Fifield at Cristal Arena
Arsenal 0 - 0 Marseille
Richard Williams at the Emirates Stadium
Henry Winter at the Emirates Stadium
Kevin McCarra at the Emirates Stadium
Five Things We Learned
Plzen 0 - 4 Barcelona
Valencia 3 - 1 Bayer Leverkusen
BATE Borisov 1 - 1 AC Milan
A group of Chelsea's 1,100 travelling supporters repeatedly sung "Anton Ferdinand: you know what you are" in a misguided attempt to show support for John Terry. Terry has been accused of racially abusing Ferdinand during his side's 1-0 defeat at Loftus Road last month, with both the FA and Met Police launching formal investigations into the allegations.
Key games in Sir Alex Ferguson's 25 years at Old Trafford: Manchester United 2-1 Sheffield Wednesday
In the build-up to Sir Alex Ferguson's 25th anniversary at Old Trafford, here is the second of our series of archive match reports from the key games which have defined his extraordinary career at Manchester United.
Date: Saturday, April 10, 1993
Venue: Old Trafford, Manchester. Att: 40,102
Result: Manchester United 2-1 Sheffield Wednesday
Manchester United: Schmeichel; Parker, Pallister, Bruce, Irwin; Sharpe, Ince, McClair, Giggs; Cantona, Hughes.
Sheffield Wednesday: Woods; Nilsson, Anderson, Palmer, King; Sheridan, Worthington, Wilson, Watson; Waddle, Jemson.
Referee: Mike Peck
Tuesday, November 01, 2011
At the final whistle in Osasuna, you could have been forgiven for shedding a tear – not just for Levante but for Spanish football too.
In Group G, Shakhtar Donetsk will be hoping to repeat their quarter-final run last season by beating the reigning Russian champions, Zenit St Petersburg, who, on the other hand, are looking to build over their win over Porto in their last European fixture. Elsewhere in Group G, Porto will look to beat APOEL in Nicosia in order to nab top spot in the group.
Genk's home from above...
QPR defender Anton Ferdinand and Newcastle United striker Sammy Amoebi receive racist abuse via Twitter
Marco Reus's brilliance is a mixed blessing for Borussia Mönchengladbach, who fear losing him to Bayern Munich.
Antonio Conte has changed the mentality at undefeated Juve, and their win at Inter in the Derby D'Italia was 'worth double'.
The club denied reports that the 29-year-old player, who was taken ill on the flight back from the 3-2 win at Roma on Saturday, had suffered a stroke. "AC Milan inform that the news in circulation containing a hypothetical diagnosis on Antonio Cassano's state of health cannot be considered true as it does not come from an accredited medical source," Milan said in a statement.
The incident in which George Galamaz was left deaf in an ear after a punch by a pitch invader has tarnished Romanian football.
Monday, October 31, 2011
In the build-up to Sir Alex Ferguson's 25th anniversary at Old Trafford, here is the first of our series of archive match reports from the key games which have defined his extraordinary career at Manchester United.
Game: European Cup Winners Cup final.
Venue: De Kuip Stadium, Rotterdam. Att: 45,000
Result: Barcelona 1-2 Manchester United
Manchester United: Sealey; Irwin, Blackmore, Bruce, Phelan, Pallister, Robson, Ince, McClair, Hughes, Sharpe. Barcelona: Busquets; Nando, Alexanco (Pinilla 72), Koeman, Ferrer, Bakero, Goicoechea, Eusebio, Salinas, Laudrup, Beguiristain. Referee: B Karlsson (Sweden).
The midfielder was seen leaving hospital on crutches with his right leg in plaster up to the knee. He had fluid drained from the ankle and Liverpool hope the procedure will allow Gerrard a speedy recovery. The extent of the lay-off should be known in the next 48 hours.
Senegal international striker El-Hadji Diouf has joined Doncaster Rovers on a three-month deal, subject to clearance.
The 30-year-old, who was released by Blackburn in the summer, has joined the Championship club after talks with boss Dean Saunders.
The two-time African Footballer of the Year previously played for Liverpool, Bolton, Sunderland and Rangers.