Category Archives: Sports

Jose Mourinho puts Tottenham and Man Utd woes behind him with extraordinary Roma start

The 23-year-old had enormous shoes to fill; having replaced experienced striker Edin Dzeko in the Roma ranks.

Inter signed the former Manchester City hitman on a free transfer after Roma elected to not extend his stay with the club.

However, in spite of all the new signings, new tactics, and new development, one thing has changed the most – Mourinho.

The angry and frustrated figure Mourinho often cut in the Tottenham dug-out, has become the very crazy Portuguese tactician who sprints up the touchline in celebration, the footballing world fell in love with.

When Stephen El-Shaarawy scored a 91st minute winner against Sassulo, Mourinho darted up the pitch to join in with the celebrations in the stands at the Stadio Olimpico.

They were scenes, reminiscent of his legendary touchline charge at OId Trafford, when Franciso Costinha scored a late winner against Manchester United to send Porto into the Champions League quarter-final in 2004.

If Roma and Mourinho continue as they are, this could be a very special season for both parties.

Published at Sat, 18 Sep 2021 18:52:43 +0000

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Jurgen Klopp raves about Ibrahima Konate’s Liverpool debut as Thiago injury update issued

Jurgen Klopp admitted the scoreline makes Liverpool’s tricky 3-0 win over Crystal Palace look much easier than it really was, as the Reds were pushed all the way by the Eagles on a challenging afternoon at Anfield. Goals from Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah and Naby Keita put Liverpool top on an afternoon where Manchester City could only manage a draw at home to Southampton.

While Liverpool squandered their fair share of chances, Palace also had their moments on Merseyside but the Reds’ resilience saw them secure their fourth Premier League clean sheet of the season, having now conceded just once in their opening five league matches.

Klopp made a number of changes to his backline too, resting Joel Matip and Andy Robertson while Trent Alexander-Arnold sat the game out due to illness.

Yet debutant Ibrahima Konate, Kostas Tsimikas and James Milner all stepped up to the plate, showing Klopp that they’re ready to perform whenever called upon.

“It is one of the most hard-fought 3-0s ever. We had to give everything. Hard but fair challenges,” Klopp told Sky Sports, when reflecting on the victory.

“Physicality was immense and we had to be ready. The chips in behind our full-back gave us trouble. The longer it went they used that more and more.

DON’T MISS: Liverpool forward Diogo Jota in ‘miss of season’ with four-yard Crystal Palace sitter

“We had to run. Wednesday/Saturday rhythm is really hard. We scored wonderful goals and used our set-pieces.

“It is massive in games like this. These are the games you have to win when you are not brilliant.”

It looked like Liverpool’s missed chances could come back to haunt them after Diogo Jota fired over from three yards with the goal at his mercy but the Reds were persistent and were therefore rewarded for their determination just moments later, when Mane opened the scoring before half-time.

“We weren’t flying today. We had to grind out a proper performance. I liked it,” Klopp added.

“When you look back you have these games when it was really fun. And some was it was important. This is one of those important games.”

One major positive for the heavily-rotated Reds was the performance of Konate in his first outing for Liverpool.

The Frenchman was dominant at the back alongside Virgil van Dijk to help nullify Christian Benteke and Palace’s pace on the break.

Konate has had to remain patient to make his first appearance in his new colours following his £34million move from RB Leipzig but he delivered on his first Premier League outing at Anfield.

“You can see he is incredibly talented,” Klopp said on his new defender.

“The potential is outstanding. He is used to winning challenges easy. He is young and he played a really good game. Massive. First home game for him.”

There was some bad news though for Liverpool to sour a fine afternoon as Thiago hobbled off with a calf problem.

He headed straight down the tunnel but his manager Klopp appears quietly hopeful the injury will not be as bad as first feared.

“He felt the calf. I don’t know right now but we hope it is not too serious,” he concluded.

Published at Sat, 18 Sep 2021 16:50:48 +0000

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Cristiano Ronaldo’s stance on Erling Haaland as Man Utd prepare for 2022 transfer

“Some players can have one or two great seasons, the really great players are the ones that keep doing it season after season, and that is not so easy to do.

“It takes a lot of hard work, and a lot of commitment.”

Ronaldo also suggested at the time that he’s not focused on individual accolades.

Instead, he wants to be a team player.

“I hope that I will be remembered as one of the great players, someone that worked hard, that always did his best to help his team and will be part of the history of the game,” he said.

Published at Sat, 18 Sep 2021 14:20:50 +0000

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Raheem Sterling’s comments on ‘dream’ transfer abroad amid Barcelona links

“Looking at it now, it’s like, Manchester, I love it. I love it here,” said Sterling.

“This is one of the best clubs in the world and I’m here for the long haul.

“But you just don’t know what happens in the future. I’m still young and, like I say, I am loving every minute.”

He has enjoyed a hugely successful six years with the Citizens having moved to the club from Liverpool in the summer of 2015.

City signed the then 20-year-old in a deal worth £49m. Since then, he has won three Premier League titles, five League Cups, the FA Cup, as well as reaching the Champions League final last season.

He has made 297 appearances for City, scoring 115 goals, and contributing 88 assists.

Published at Sat, 18 Sep 2021 12:19:50 +0000

This story originally posted here

Man Utd boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer may drop three players for West Ham Premier League clash

Manchester United go into Sunday’s Premier League clash with West Ham looking to bounce back. After recently losing to Young Boys in the Champions League, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side need to pick up three points at the London Stadium to improve the mood. And, in order to do that, three players may get dropped…

Aaron Wan-Bissaka

Tuesday night was a bad evening for many players.

Jesse Lingard gave the ball away for Young Boys’ dramatic late winner, with the England international then apologising on social media in the aftermath.

Donny van de Beek toiled during his 45 minutes on the field, while Jadon Sancho was forced to come off in the first half.

But, arguably, it was Aaron Wan-Bissaka’s low point.

The right-back has been consistent ever since joining from Crystal Palace two years ago, with his defending often his best trait.

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Victor Lindelof

Victor Lindelof was arguably United’s best player in their 1-1 draw with Southampton on matchday two.

But he failed to impose himself against Young Boys and is now expected to drop to the bench.

United had chosen to leave Raphael Varane out of the starting XI for their maiden Champions League fixture, despite the France international impressing so far.

Yet that decision backfired.

And, with West Ham likely to be tough to take on at the London Stadium, Solskjaer may change things around.

With Varane, the Red Devils look improved at the back.

Without him, then they look exposed – with Lindelof’s lack of pace, physicality and issues in the air all well known.

West Ham have a physical, imposing striker in the form of Michail Antonio.

And a centre-back axis consisting of Varane and Harry Maguire could be the way to go when it comes to keeping the Hammers hitman at bay.

Varane has played against many top players throughout his career and that experience is why United paid £40million to secure his signature.

Donny van de Beek

As mentioned above, Van de Beek struggled against Young Boys.

And with Solskjaer rarely playing the Netherlands international, he isn’t expected to keep his place for Sunday’s trip to London.

The 24-year-old obviously has talent in abundance but still appears unsure of himself when it comes to playing in the Premier League.

United will need grit in the centre of the field if they’re to take all three points.

So it’s likely he’ll be left out, with Paul Pogba then moved back into the middle alongside Fred for the match against David Moyes’ team.

Published at Sat, 18 Sep 2021 10:39:40 +0000

This story originally posted here

Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia’s ‘frosty’ relationship with Tottenham’s Daniel Levy

Sunday sees two of the fiercest rivals in England go head-to-head once more as Tottenham host Chelsea in the Premier League. The London-based clubs have had a number of heated battles in recent years, and this weekend’s clash could be a tasty one again as both sides look to get one over the other.

And according to The Athletic, the duo do not exactly see eye-to-eye.

They claim that the pair have developed a frosty relationship down the years, and would only ever communicate via email rather than face-to-face or over the phone.

They add that it would be highly unlikely that the two would be seen making small talk at Sunday’s match, with one source adding: “What you have is two people in Marina and Daniel who are particularly tough. If you had the two of them negotiating… I don’t think anyone would know which way it’s going to go.”

Chelsea will be the strong favourites for the game, and Blues boss Thomas Tuchel said he was looking forward to the encounter. 

“It is always a good time to play Tottenham as it is a big match and rivalry,” he said. “It is one of the matches you want to play.

We had a recovery day yesterday and now have two training sessions. It is good for us, it is an advantage.”

Nuno Espirito Santo, meanwhile, seemed downbeat on his Spurs’ sides chances following their latest injury crisis.

Spurs are likely to be missing a number of key players through injury, with Lucas Moura and Steven Bergwijn the latest to pick up knocks. 

And the Portuguese manager said of the disruption: “It’s been terrible. I must be honest. Let’s not hide behind nothing. After the Watford game, everything that has happened has not been very good for us.

“But this is football and we know it’s a moment we have to overcome. Today, we tried to show the players solutions, thinking about the game on Sunday. But it’s about overcoming obstacles. That will make us stronger for the future, for sure.”

Asked about whether Moura and Bergwijn will be available against Chelsea, he added: “I cannot tell you. They are being taken care of by the medical department.

“But it’s been tough. It feels painful, it feels really bad.”

Published at Sat, 18 Sep 2021 08:16:06 +0000

This story originally posted here

Revealed: How to pick Joshua’s sparring partners

Finding Anthony Joshua’s sparring partners to prepare for Oleksandr Usyk was a ‘nightmare’ but David ‘KD’ Ghansa reveals how he selected high-class contenders…

Who are Joshua’s sparring partners?

Demsey McKean

Anthony Joshua, Demsey McKean
Image:
Demsey McKean is No 10 in the IBF

Sky customers: Buy Joshua vs Usyk
Non-Sky customers: Buy Joshua vs Usyk

“He was on our list for a very long time,” David ‘KD’ Ghansa, part of Joshua’s management team who sources sparring partners, told Sky Sports. “He was in Australia but I randomly got a call saying: ‘He’s in the country’.

“He’s a big guy, he’s strong, he fights well going backwards and forwards.

“He is ranked No 10 with the IBF so is a potential contender. So we are gauging a guy who could become a mandatory challenger as well.”

The Australian, unbeaten in 19, has been sparring up to 15 rounds consecutively with Joshua. He told Sky Sports: “I consider myself a technical fighter. I like to be nice and sharp. I’m quite fast and explosive for a heavyweight. Those are definitely my strengths. I like to showcase my speed.”

Viktor Jurk

Viktor Jurk, Joshua and Shokran Parwani
Image:
Viktor Jurk, Joshua and Shokran Parwani

“Bernd Boente [the former manager of Wladimir Klitschko] sent me a phenomenal gem,” said Ghansa.

“He is 21. He is unbelievable!”

Germany’s Jurk is an amateur awaiting the chance to turn pro.

“Everybody loves his character and his boxing ability. He is a kid who can do everything and anything, even though he’s still growing.

“He is baby-faced but 6’9”!

“He is light on his feet, powerful and strong. He is so confident and has been doing really well. He is one to watch, he’s going to be amazing.”

Vartan Arutyunyan

“Funnily enough, I just saw a kid smashing pads on Instagram! He was like a little Mike Tyson,” said Ghansa. “Then someone else mentioned his name.

“We dissect attributes from fighters. We are not looking for the complete fighter.

“We wanted to have strength. Vartan is a powerhouse even though he’s only 6’2”.

“His power is phenomenal.”

Milun Marko

Joshua and Milun Marko
Image:
Joshua and Milun Marko

“He is definitely very good,” said Ghansa. “He recently fought Frazer Clarke in the amateurs, which Frazer won.

“So Rob McCracken [Joshua’s trainer and the Team GB Olympic coach] has obviously seen Marko up close.

“He was coming over to spar with Alen Babic. I said: ‘We’d love to bring you here for two weeks’. He stayed for five.

“He is a switch-hitter – he’s a southpaw who can switch it up and apply orthodox as well.”

Thomas Carty

“Great guy, very good. He’s Irish so you know he is a warrior,” said Ghansa.

“He came and put in a real shift and gave Anthony that work.

“People need to tune in to Carty – he will blow up, he will cause these guys problems, and his chance will come.”

Carty told Sky Sports about being a southpaw heavyweight: “It’s a tactical advantage but only if utilised properly. I don’t have an extra arm or leg. But I do see the benefits. So many orthodox guys have only boxed orthodox fighters.”

Shokran Parwani

Shokran Parwani and Anthony Joshua
Image:
Shokran Parwani mimicked Usyk in Chisora’s training camp

“Nobody wants to fight him. He’s a man of many styles and is an all-round professional who trains very hard,” said Ghansa.

“He’s a cruiserweight who was in Derek Chisora and Lawrence Okolie’s camps as a sparring partner.”

Parwani told Sky Sports how he is able to mimic Usyk: “I have a little bit of the same style. I work more with my feet. I am a slick guy with a lot of movement. Usyk is also a slick guy, he isn’t a puncher.”

Denis Latypov

Denis Latypov and Anthony Joshua
Image:
Denis Latypov and Anthony Joshua

The Russian-born heavyweight represented his adopted nation, Bahrain, at Tokyo 2020. He sparred with Joshua before and after the Olympics.

The ‘nightmare’ to find sparring partners!

The job description changed from 6’9” colossuses to southpaw tricksters overnight. The “nightmare” of logistics made the sourcing of Joshua’s sparring partners even more difficult.

Joshua was initially preparing to fight Tyson Fury before attention turned to Usyk.

HANDOUT PICTURE COMPLIMENTS OF MATCHROOM BOXING.Oleksandr Usyk vs Derek Chisora, Heavyweight Contest..31 October 2020.Picture By Mark Robinson..
Image:
Former undisputed cruiserweight champion Usyk is undefeated

“It has been really difficult,” Ghansa told Sky Sports. “Look at the top 10 across every governing body, there are basically no southpaws. In the top 20 there are one or two and they don’t all possess what we need.

“Charles Martin has already fought AJ. Otto Wallin we contacted but, due to travel restrictions, we couldn’t bring him in.

“Lenroy Thomas and Mike Perez couldn’t come due to injuries.

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Anthony Joshua on fighting at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

“It has been a nightmare sourcing the correct guys and getting them into the country.

“Now, AJ is getting the best work possible. It has been a mix of guys with experience.

“Derek Chisora and Tony Bellew [Usyk’s former opponents] have been telling the sparring partners what to do. We spoke to Chisora and Bellew and, no matter what people might think, Usyk can hit.”

Sky Sports Boxing schedule

September 25 – Sky Sports Box Office
Anthony Joshua vs Oleksandr Usyk – IBF, WBA, WBO heavyweight titles
Lawrence Okolie vs Dilan Prasovic – WBO cruiserweight title

October 2
Chris Eubank Jr vs Sven Elbir
David Avanesyan vs Liam Taylor – European welterweight title
Richard Riakpohre vs Krzysztof Twardowski
Mikael Lawal vs Steven Ward

October 16
Savannah Marshall vs Lolita Muzeya – WBO middleweight title
Hughie Fury vs Christian Hammer

October 24
Jamel Herring vs Shakur Stevenson – WBO super-featherweight title

November 6
BOXXER tournament

December 18
Josh Taylor vs Jack Catterall – undisputed super-lightweight title

Published at Sat, 18 Sep 2021 06:32:01 +0000

This story originally posted here

Tottenham boss Nuno makes Chelsea ‘promise’ as he gives opinion of rival Thomas Tuchel

Thomas Tuchel has built on winning the Champions League with Chelsea last season by getting his team off to a storming start in this campaign. But Tottenham manager Nuno Espirito Santo insists he is not surprised – and has also promised that Spurs will give their all against their London rivals.

Tottenham and Chelsea come face to face on Sunday in north London in a key early-season tester as to just how these two bitter rivals are going to fare this term.

Tuchel’s Chelsea go into the game on the back of three wins in four games in the Premier League and conceding only one goal.

Meanwhile Nuno’s injury-riddled Tottenham side saw their unbeaten start to the campaign brought to a shuddering halt with a 3-0 loss at Crystal Palace last weekend.

Add to that a lengthening casualty list and a draining UEFA Europa Conference League trip to Rennes in midweek, and the Portuguese is facing major problems ahead of a clash against a coach he deeply respects.

Nuno was adamant after Spurs hit the top of the table after their opening three wins that it meant nothing and that work still needed to be done.

MUST READ: Spurs fans make same joke after Arsenal icon Thierry Henry jibe

But Tuchel, after a remarkable first nine months at Stamford Bridge, appears to have already turned Chelsea into Premier League and Champions League contenders.

The Spurs manager said: “There’s no surprise at all for me about how well Thomas has done.

“He already did an amazing job at Borussia Dortmund, and was fantastic at Paris Saint-Germain. He and his coaching staff have enormous quality so I am not surprised by the success.

“You can see how good they play. They are a very good team, and Thomas is doing an amazing job.

“Chelsea have an amazing squad, with talented players. They play good football, they are organised, they are intense.

“They are European champions, so we must value that, as we do to all of the opponents. But tomorrow we will compete. That’s a promise.”

“He has always been a top-class coach, but he has had to adapt. He has changed the way he wants to play, changed the formation.

“But his principles are still the same, he still wants to win games and play nice football. That’s his way of playing.”

With Son Heung-min, Eric Dier and Ryan Session already doubtful for tomorrow with knocks, Nuno has further worries with Steven Bergwijn and Lucas Moura limping off in France and facing tests today.

Giovani Lo Celso, Cristian Romero and Davinson Sanchez could all be thrown into action against Chelsea such is the extent of the injury crisis.

All three arrive back from Croatia on Saturday after their enforced absence, but will train in the afternoon and will be considered for selection.

Nuno said: “We must consider them. It’s been hard because absences are always a problem.” Lo Celso and Romero both face club fines for travelling to play for Argentina without permission – and all three players have been training while isolating in Croatia.

Published at Sat, 18 Sep 2021 04:11:42 +0000

“Excited to fall back in love with wrestling again”- Ruby Soho talks about joining AEW after WWE release

Ruby Soho has revealed her happiness in joining AEW and has again fallen in love with wrestling.

Soho debuted at AEW All Out 2021 and made a winning start in Tony Khan’s promotion as she won the Women’s Casino Battle Royale.

Ruby Soho has picked up wins in every match she’s been involved in AEW. While speaking to Chris Jericho on his podcast Talk is Jericho, the former leader of the Riott Squad, said she was “excited to fall back in love with wrestling again.”

“It’s like a journey. I don’t think I have words to describe it. It’s like a dream, I don’t know if I have words to describe it. It feels like I’m living a completely different life but it’s untrue because the lives I’ve lived previously have just led me to this point and I’m so unbelievably grateful and this place is so special and I have wanted to see this, this seems too good to be true. Like, the people are super nice, Tony is amazing, everybody has been super responsive and the crowds are unbelievable not just in Chicago but when we were in Cincinnati they were amazing so I know it wasn’t just a one time thing and I’m just so happy to be a part of it and I’m so excited to fall back in love with wrestling again,” said Ruby Soho.

Ruby Soho will challenge for the Women’s Championship at AEW Dynamite: Grand Slam

Next week, Ruby Soho will cash in on her title opportunity at the AEW Dynamite: Grand Slam special.

The match came about after Ruby Soho won the Women’s Casino Battle Royale at All Out. Since then, Britt Baker and her crew have tried to make life difficult for the new No.1 Contender, but nothing has worked.

The former WWE star defeated Jamie Hayter during her Dynamite debut. Soho continued her winning momentum on last week’s Rampage as she joined forces with Kris Statlander and Riho to defeat Britt Baker, Rebel and Hayter.


If you use any of the above quotes, please backlink Talk is Jericho and give a H/T to Sportskeeda Wrestling.


A top IMPACT Wrestling star just told us he wants to face AEW’s Adam Cole. Click here for more.

Edited by Alan John


Published at Sat, 18 Sep 2021 02:01:22 +0000

Grassroots football could be on verge of extinction – due to climate change

On average, every amateur football club in the country is hit with five cancellations or postponements each season because of severe weather.

This rises to an average of seven matches in Wales, the most affected area of the UK, according to the research from The Climate Coalition to mark the start of Great Big Green Week.

Experts now fear that without a clearer Government plan on how to tackle climate change, participation in the amateur game could dry up within 60 years.

Extreme weather has been linked to changes in the climate by experts at The Met Office and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Fiona Dear, Head of Campaigns at The Climate Coalition, said: “Top football players may be global superstars, but they represent only the tip of the pyramid.

“Grassroots football remains the lifeblood of the game and a key way that many people keep fit, socialise and stay close to their community – that’s what makes our findings so alarming.

“Extreme weather conditions linked to climate change are already having a disruptive impact on the grassroots game, but we’ve also got deep concern about future participation levels.

“With The Met Office predicting that the UK could have between 70 and 100 per cent more rain by 2080 – under 60 years away – it’s not beyond reason that participation in the grassroots game could all but vanish by that point.”

Research of 2,000 adults commissioned by The Climate Coalition found more than eight in ten adults have had a grassroots game they were involved with affected by adverse weather.

Six in ten report an increase in extreme weather putting paid to their weekend games, with 51 percent struggling to find refs who will officiate in the rain or freezing cold.

More than half (55 percent) report pitch quality deteriorating when the weather is extreme – either too hot, too cold or too wet.

Another 51 percent feel their crowd numbers dwindle even further when games take place during particularly bad weather.

A third (33 percent) of those polled via OnePoll worry for the future of the game, as a result of extreme weather situations changing or cancelling the matchday experience.

Brits believe the grassroots game is twice as likely as the professional model to be at risk due to worsening weather conditions in the future.

And just under four in ten (38 percent) would like to call on the government to do more to protect football from the ravages of climate change.

Fiona Dear added: “This is why Great Big Green Week is so important.

“It’s the fight that unites. People from all walks of life – no matter who they are, where they’re from or which football team they support – are putting differences aside to celebrate a love for nature and the environment.

“They’re also sending a clear message to the Prime Minister ahead of the United Nations COP26 climate talks in November: we care about climate change, and we need you to deliver a clear plan to limit a rise in temperatures and to stop floods, heatwaves and droughts getting even worse.

“Football is one part of British life that would benefit hugely from improved Government climate policies.”

HOW WEATHER AFFECTS GRASSROOTS FOOTBALL:

  • There are an estimated 40,000 amateur football teams in the UK;
  • 58 percent of people involved with amateur football teams say their team’s matches are cancelled or postponed because of adverse weather linked to climate change, leaving 23,300 teams affected;
  • An average of 5.39 games postponed or cancelled per club gives 125,048, divided by two to account for each game involving two teams (and removing any potential duplication), which equates to 62,524 matches overall.

Published at Fri, 17 Sep 2021 23:16:46 +0000