Burnley boss Dyche: Hendrick has much to offerby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveSean Dyche is pleased with the impact of Burnley midfielder Jeff Hendrick.The Burnley boss saw Hendrick’s late goal hand them a 1-1 draw at Brighton last time out. “I just think he can affect the game in so many different ways,” Dyche said of his midfielder.“Probably the biggest thing I’ve spoken to him about is scoring goals – adding to that side of the game.“He’s a big lad, he can head it, he can strike it as you’ve seen. He did very well.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
About the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say Klopp fumes over penalty as Liverpool fall in Napoli – againby Freddie Taylora month agoSend to a friendShare the loveJurgen Klopp was unhappy with the refereeing in Liverpool’s 2-0 loss to Napoli in the Champions League on Tuesday night.The game looked destined from a draw until Andy Robertson fouled Jose Callejon in the box after 81 minutes. Replays showed Callejon initiated the contact to Robertson’s outstretched leg, but nonetheless, Lorenzo Insigne stepped dutifully to fire home Napoli’s first of the game.An uncharacteristic error from Virgil van Dijk then allowed Fernando Llorente to score his first goal for Napoli to double their advantage. Speaking after the game, Klopp was adamant Robertson should not have been penalised for the challenge with Callejon.He told BT Sport: “It should hurt because there were opportunities for us. It was an open game with a lot of counter attacks, but we didn’t finish them off and that is a problem.”In the second half it was a wild game, they were running and we were running.”I don’t think it’s a penalty. What can I say, for me, it is clear and obvious no penalty. He jumps before any contact, we can’t change that.”We played a lot of good football but didn’t finish it off. We controlled moments but had not enough chances in the end. We made decisions that were not right and have to accept the result. It was very often the final ball that was not right.”Napoli defeated Liverpool 1-0 at the San Paolo Stadium in the Champions League group stages last season.
Man Utd manager Solskjaer fears the worst for Rashford injuryby Freddie Taylora month agoSend to a friendShare the loveOle Gunnar Solskjaer is worried Marcus Rashford could be sidelined after injuring his groin in Sunday’s 2-0 loss to West Ham United.The England international was substituted after 60 minutes when he suffered a muscle injury.”We have got to scan him tomorrow,” Solskjaer said after the match.”He felt his groin. So he will probably be out for a little while. I can update you later when I know a little more.” About the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say
TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Vitesse coach Slutsky: Today’s footballers should be grateful to Abramovichby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveVitesse Arnhem coach Leonid Slutsky says today’s footballers across Europe should be grateful to Roman Abramovich.Slutsky, who is close to the Russian billionaire, argues football’s wage explosion would not have happened without Abramovich buying Chelsea.He stated: “Abramovich is a revolutionary in world football.”All the young players of our time should say thanks to Roman Abramovich, who, by joining football, raised the salary level several times. “Now you will not surprise anyone with huge salaries, but Abramovich started everything.”Abramovich has owned Chelsea since the summer of 2003.
Sead Kolasinac says Arsenal plans on trackby Paul Vegas4 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveSead Kolasinac says Arsenal’s plans this season are on track.Arsenal can return to third in the table with victory at Sheffield United tonight.“The Premier League isn’t called the hardest league in the world for nothing,” said Gunners defender Kolasinac. “It [the race for the top-four] is pretty wide open. For example, Manchester City lost to Wolves before the international break. But we are just going to focus on ourselves and try to work hard to win every game. Who knows what will happen at the end of the season? “We are still at the beginning now, but we hope to finish in the top four.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
FSU FootballsFlorida State travels to Wake Forest this Saturday, and the game could be affected by the path of Hurricane Joaquin. At the very least, heavy rain could fall during the contest, and the Seminoles are preparing for the inclement conditions. Here’s a video courtesy of FSU beat writer Safid Deen showing the Seminole running backs working with wet footballs in anticipation of a downpour on Saturday. The balls get a quick dunk in a bucket of water before being used in the drill.FSU’s running backs working with wet footballs in preparation for Saturday’s game at Wake Forest. #Noles pic.twitter.com/tvkRuRavtE— Safid Deen (@Safid_Deen) October 1, 2015Can’t leave any stone unturned when getting ready to play.
chris daniels father upset with texasOn January 4, 2006, in one of college football’s most prestigious venues, Vince Young and the Texas Longhorns made sports history. UT’s national championship upset of Pete Carroll’s dynastic USC Trojans has been selected as the No. 34 best moment in sports history by Sports Illustrated. SI, on the epic win for the Longhorns:DATE / Jan 4, 2006 LOCATION / Rose Bowl | Pasadena, Calif.MOMENT / The 2006 BCS Championship featured a pair of unbeaten powerhouses, but in the end, it was Texas and QB Vince Young who stood tallest. Young, who accounted for a record 467 yards of offense, rushed in the game-winning score with 19 seconds remaining to lift the Longhorns over the USC Trojans 41-38. IMPACT / Players from this instant classic dominated the NFL draft, with four of them going in the top 10 (Young went No. 3). An NCAA investigation would eventually conclude USC’s Reggie Bush received illegal benefits while at the school, causing the Trojan to vacate their 12 wins from that season.Texas is one of eight college football moments included in SI’s Top 100 list. Only “The Play” from the 1982 Cal-Stanford game edges it out from the sport. We can’t argue with that. Vince Young’s performance was unforgettable.For the full list, click here.[Sports Illustrated]More: The 10 CFB Teams That Could Go Undefeated In 2016 >>>
The 2016 NCAA Tournament field was unveiled Sunday night, meaning that for the next three days, college basketball fans will be spending their time filling out brackets. We here at College Spun have a different kind of challenge for you, however. We want you to help us determine the most annoying person in sports media. We’ve gone ahead and nominated 64 different candidates.A few of the nominees – like Barstool Sports, Saturday Down South and SB Nation – are actually entities, rather than people. But you get the gist. We’ve also put ourselves on here, just in case you think that we’re actually the most annoying.Let’s get started. You can vote on the Clay Travis region below:The 64 Most Annoying People In Sports MediaVote On The Clay Travis Region Below1. Clay Travis vs. 16. Jim RomeRome isn’t burning anymore, but Clay’s hot takes do enough melting for this entire field. More Annoying: Clay Travis vs. Jim Rome?2. Dick Vitale vs. 15. Jim NantzImpossible to fall asleep when Vitale is on the broadcast. Impossible not to when it’s Nantz. More Annoying: Dick Vitale or Jim Nantz?3. Doug Gottlieb vs. 14. Ron JaworskiSyracuse fans, among others, can’t stand Gottlieb. Jaws’ shtick is played out too. More Annoying: Doug Gottlieb or Ron Jaworski?4. Keith Olbermann vs. 13. Chris ChaseOlbermann can’t figure out how to play nice in the sandbox. Chase is infamous for going against the grain. More Annoying: Keith Olbermann or Chris Chase?5. Erin Andrews vs. 12. Lee CorsoSome think Andrews looks annoyed all the time. Some don’t like Corso’s shenanigans each Saturday. More Annoying: Erin Andrews or Lee Corso?6. Kirk Herbstreit vs. 11. SB Nation’s Twitter MafiaHerbstreit gets it from basically every fan base, regardless of which teams he picks. Spencer Hall, Ryan Nanni, Jason Kirk and Rodger Sherman are basically all the same person. More Annoying: Kirk Herbstreit or SB Nation’s Twitter Mafia?7. Max Kellerman vs. 10. Barstool Sports GuysWe’re still not sure how Kellerman weaseled his way back onto ESPN. And you either love or hate Barstool. More Annoying: Max Kellerman or Barstool Sports?8. Rick Reilly vs. 9. Todd McShayReilly had it first on Twitter, we’re told. McShay’s back-and-forth with Kiper could be its own category. More Annoying: Rick Reilly or Todd McShay?Vote On The Stephen A. Smith Region Here >>>
Several Blackpool supporters blocked Arsenal’s bus from leaving the team hotel in an effort to postpone Saturday’s FA Cup tie. The Gunners were forced to change to a new bus as Blackpool supporters continue to protest the club’s owner Owen Oyston.One Blackpool fan climbed on top of the coach, while several others stood in its way in an effort to prevent the bus from leaving the hotel and heading to Bloomfield Road. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Blackpool fans currently stopping the Arsenal team bus from leaving their hotel to get to Bloomfield Road for this evenings FA Cup tie #protests pic.twitter.com/GC330zeyKJ— Ged Mills (@GedMills) January 5, 2019Blackpool supporters saw the high-profile FA Cup showdown as an opportunity to have their protests against Oyston given a bigger platform, with the game broadcast on national television.Protests are expected outside of Bloomfield Road ahead of the game as Tangerines supporters voice their opposition to Oyston’s ownership. Inside the ground, however, it should be a more subdued environment with Blackpool having sold less than 3,000 tickets to the FA Cup match. The small number of home supporters is nothing new for the League One side, whose average attendance is less than 4,000 this season as fans continue to stay away due to their opposition to Oyston’s ownership.Police were aware of the potential for protests before the game, with particular attention paid to pitch invaders. “Anybody entering the field of play without permission will be committing criminal offences and will be dealt with appropriately,” a Lancashire Police statement published ahead of the match read. Blackpool fan group, The Muckers, said: “We are calling on all Blackpool fans to make their feelings known towards the owners in a non-violent but direct way.”We will be present and encourage people not to enter the pitch, which we would condemn.”Arsenal have sold out their allocation of 5,300 tickets, meaning the away side will likely have more supporters at Saturday’s match, which kicks off at 5:30pm local time.
When Guillermo Barros Schelotto was introduced as the LA Galaxy’s new coach, one of the things he said he was looking forward to was working with the team’s star players. He proceeded to name the team’s four designated players, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Giovani dos Santos, Jonathan dos Santos and Romain Alessandrini.What went ignored is the reality that the Galaxy can’t keep all four players. When the Galaxy signed Ibrahimovic to a new contract, making him an official designated player — the label that allows the club to pay him well over the league’s maximum salary — it gave LA four players on DP contracts, one more than the league allows under its current rules. Now the Galaxy must figure out what to do. Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? None of the team’s DPs earn a salary that would allow the club to buy down their contract and turn them from a designated player into a TAM (targeted allocation money) player, so the Galaxy have no choice but to unload one of their marquee names, via sale, trade or contract buyout. “There’s actually interest from abroad for some of them, so we’ll discuss it first and foremost with the players and see if that is something they would entertain,” Galaxy general manager Dennis te Kloese told Goal. “Second of all, there is also the possibility of restructuring the contracts or do something. We’ll take full advantage of the possibilities. “It’s not so easy obviously, but we’ll have to look into every possibility.” Transferring out one of their DPs would be an ideal scenario. It would not only alleviate the logjam but would also generate allocation money the team could use to improve a roster that needs some additions to address needs in the team’s defense. Sources tell Goal that the Galaxy have already been approached with a transfer bid from abroad for Giovani dos Santos, but the Mexican midfielder turned down the opportunity. The older of the Dos Santos brothers has endured a largely disappointing tenure with the Galaxy, and the arrival of Ibrahimovic has made him a much less influential figure with the team. Selling him is an ideal scenario, but the Galaxy could also choose to buy out his contract. “We have to see where he’s at with his head and what he wants,” Te Kloese said of Giovani. “Last season there was a while he got injured and things got frustrating. He’s a talented player, I don’t think there’s any doubt about that, but before we can give a definite answer on his future we have to see where he comes from. “In the end Juan Carlos Osorio called him to the World Cup and he actually played. Now we’ll have to see what his idea is and how he matches up to our coaching staff and our coaching staff’s idea of playing style. Before knocking on the door with MLS on what to do about contracts and everything else we’ll have to figure out first in a professional and personal way where they stand.” The Galaxy will need to manage the Dos Santos situation carefully because of the presence of his brother Jonathan, who was originally drawn to the Galaxy by the idea of playing alongside his brother. If the Galaxy do decide to unload Gio it could unsettle Jonathan, leaving the club in a place where it has a decision to make on both brothers. Selling Jonathan dos Santos wouldn’t be much of a problem considering the quality he can still provide. Offloading both brothers might seem like a drastic option, but it would turn the Galaxy’s DP glut into a vacancy, leaving room for Te Kloese and Schelotto to hit the international market and use their cache to bring in a new star player to complement Ibrahimovic and build the team around. There is no immediate rush to make a move. The Galaxy have until the start of the season in March to address their surplus of designated players, and as much as one or both of the Dos Santos brothers could be unloaded, the Galaxy could also look to sell Alessandrini or trade him within MLS. Whatever the club decides to do, it won’t be established until Schelotto has had time with his new team and both he and Te Kloese have spoken with the Galaxy’s designated players to get a sense of what they want to do. “The first and foremost thing is we need to speak to these guys and see where they are in their mindset,” Te Kloese said. “To be honest, the team hasn’t been good for the past few years. I’d like to have our coach sit with them and see how committed they are going forward. Where they see themselves and where they stand. And now with the coach coming in also he’ll have an idea where we can change certain things. “I think it will be important when they come together so Guillermo and his staff can assess and evaluate. To be honest, I think there is a need for sure in certain areas, and it will need some creative handling.” Selling or buying out Giovani dos Santos seems like the obvious solution, but Te Kloese doesn’t see things being so simple. “It’s easy to judge, but it’s better to sit down with them and we have a little bit of time to do that,” Te Kloese told Goal. “We don’t want to hurt their possibilities, but they also have to understand that we have a clear idea where we want to go and we’ll make the best decision for everybody.”
Aleksandar Mitrovic scored two brilliant headers as Fulham came from behind to earn a priceless 4-2 Premier League win at home to Brighton and Hove Albion, following key tactical changes from Claudio Ranieri.Glenn Murray’s double gave Brighton a 2-0 lead inside 16 minutes as crosses from the Seagulls’ right led to chances the striker gobbled up to reach 10 Premier League goals this season.But, after Ranieri switched to a back four then brought on Luciano Vietto at half-time, Calum Chambers and Mitrovic struck to draw the scores level. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Mitrovic put Fulham ahead after beating Lewis Dunk in the air and Vietto struck late to wrap up an amazing win, moving the Cottagers to within two points of third-bottom Cardiff City.pic.twitter.com/NjoewhuQr7— Fulham Football Club (@FulhamFC) January 29, 2019Fulham have conceded by far the most goals in the Premier League this season and it took Brighton fewer than three minutes to open the scoring with a remarkably simple strike.Right-back Martin Montoya was allowed to run unchallenged before delivering a fine cross Murray steered home after getting between defenders Denis Odoi and Maxime Le Marchand.Murray was on target again in the 16th minute. Odoi’s poor clearance allowed Davy Propper to hook the ball back into the danger zone for the veteran striker to pounce from close range.Either side of Propper rattling the crossbar Murray missed two chances to seal his hat-trick and surely kill the game.But Chambers’ stunning 20-yard volley gave Fulham a lifeline within two minutes of the restart and Mitrovic then hauled them level by showing the most desire to reach a deflected cross.Ping pic.twitter.com/FMukpKRnxH— Fulham Football Club (@FulhamFC) January 29, 2019Jean Michael Seri hit the post but Sergio Rico had to make a brilliant save in the 72nd minute to deny Murray the match ball.And when Joe Bryan floated a superb cross into the box from the left wing, Mitrovic dominated aerially for a second time to beat Mat Ryan with an excellent downward header.Brighton were suddenly on the ropes and Vietto’s first Premier League goal sealed matters, with Tom Cairney striking the bar as a once-improbable win threatened to grow in size.What does it mean? Fulham finally have hopeDefensively Fulham were a shambles in the first half, but in Mitrovic they have a striker capable of firing the goals they need to stay in the Premier League. Brighton, meanwhile, are suddenly drifting under Chris Hughton with the Seagulls only winning one of their past nine in the league.Tinkerman Ranieri’s masterplan pays offAfter 26 minutes of defensive disarray, Ranieri had seen enough and replaced Tim Ream with Cairney, switching to a back four. That change settled Fulham and, when half-time sub Vietto added thrust, they completed one of the season’s most memorable comebacks.Stephens and Seri avoid red cardsReferee Lee Probert was in lenient mood and a harsher official perhaps would have shown two red cards in the first half. Dale Stephens clattered into Andre Schurrle shin but was only booked, with the same punishment given to Seri after his two-footed challenge on Montoya.Key Opta facts- Fulham v Brighton is just the second match-up in Premier League history to see both sides come from two goals behind to avoid defeat in their two meetings within a season, after Blackburn Rovers v Bolton Wanderers in 2003-04.- Fulham came from behind in a Premier League game after being two goals down at half-time for the first time since April 26, 2008, when they won 3-2 at Manchester City.- Murray’s opening goal ended an eight-game run without a goal for Brighton – his worst scoreless run in the Premier League for the club.- In doing so, Murray opened the scoring in a Premier League match for the sixth time this season – only Mohamed Salah (nine games) has done more often, while Harry Kane has also achieved the feat six times.6 – Only Mohamed Salah (9) has scored the opening goal in more @premierleague games this season than Brighton’s Glenn Murray (6). Rapid. pic.twitter.com/KBBS4JFgRm— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) January 29, 2019ChelseaWhat’s next?Fulham will try to maintain momentum at Crystal Palace on Saturday, when Brighton host Watford. read more – Murray’s double saw him become the oldest player to score a brace in a Premier League game (35 years, 126 days) since Frank Lampard for against West Ham on November 23, 2013 (35 years, 156 days).- Mitrovic has now netted 20 Premier League goals – scoring five of those under Steve McClaren, five under Rafael Benitez, five under Slavisa Jokanovic and five under Ranieri.
Laurent Koscielny has handed Arsenal a timely fitness boost ahead of their trip to Manchester City, with the Gunners skipper back in training.The France international was forced to sit out a 2-1 victory over Cardiff on Tuesday.He found himself on the sidelines after taking a heavy blow to his face during the FA Cup fourth round clash with Manchester United. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? It was initially feared that he had broken his jaw, although the severity of the knock was reduced following medical examinations.With no lasting damage suffered, Koscielny is now ready to resume his efforts in 2018-19.He had already seen the start of his season delayed by an Achilles problem picked up towards the end of the previous campaign, so is desperate to get as much game time under his belt as possible.It could be that he is drafted straight back into Unai Emery’s plans for a visit to the home of the reigning Premier League champions on Sunday.An update from Arsenal on Koscielny’s fitness read: “Returned to full training further to bruising and soft tissue swelling to face and jaw.”The Gunners will be hoping that their captain is ready to face City as they are currently contending with a number of other defensive issues.Sokratis Papastathopoulos also picked up an untimely ankle injury during the aforementioned 3-1 defeat to United.Arsenal were forced to name Skhodran Mustafi and Nacho Monreal as their centre-half pairing against Cardiff as a result.There will be more creative selections to come, with their Greece international “expected to return to full training by the end of February”.Rob Holding, meanwhile, is recovering from surgery on his left knee.Ainsley Maitland-Niles may be ready for duty against City, but he will be “assessed” ahead of a journey to the Etihad Stadium.Henrikh Mkhitaryan will also have to prove his fitness before a decision is taken on his possible involvement against the Blues.One man who definitely will not be involved is Hector Bellerin.The Spain international full-back has been forced to undergo an operation after suffering cruciate ligament damage to his left knee.Arsenal say he has “now commenced recovery and rehabilitation programme”, but is set to be sidelined for the foreseeable future. Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.
Eden Hazard will go down in history as the best player to ever represent Chelsea, according to former Blues midfielder Joe Cole.Hazard, who has helped the Blues win five major trophies since arriving in west London in 2012, was named PFA Player of the Year in 2014-15 and continues to lead by example for Maurizio Sarri’s side.And former England international Cole, who spent a year with the Belgian while at Lille in 2011-12, always felt Hazard’s skill level would see him become a fan favourite at Stamford Bridge. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? “I said when he signed that he would be the greatest player the club has ever had and I still stand by that. I still believe that,” Cole told the Daily Mirror .“My team-mates and my colleagues have been amazing but Eden is the best player I’ve ever worked with.“When you look at what he’s done in the short space of time that he’s been there. He’s been an unbelievable player. I think he’s the best player in the league and I think he’s a top, top player and it’s important the club keep hold of him.”Cole’s praise for Hazard is even more remarkable considering who the 37-year-old played with during his seven-year stint at Stamford Bridge.The former midfielder was a team-mate of the likes of John Terry, Ashley Cole, Frank Lampard, Didier Drogba at Chelsea, but ironically it is a player who has since moved to Chelsea, whom Cole considers to be the best he ever played with.So impressed was the now Chelsea coach with Hazard, he even encouraged him to join the Blues in the summer of 2012.“I played with him when I was at Lille and he was being courted by all the top clubs in Europe and Harry Redknapp was talking to me about him because Tottenham wanted him,” said Cole. “Everyone wanted him – Man United, Man City and I just felt Chelsea was the right home for him.“I told him if he wanted to win trophies which he has done and develop as a player. London is close to Belgium on the Eurostar, I felt it was the right fit and I knew the fans would love him.”Hazard continues to be linked with a move away from Chelsea, with Real Madrid reportedly keen to bring him to Santiago Bernabeu.For now, though, his concentration is focused on firing the Blues back into the Champions League, with Sarri’s side next in action against Huddersfield Town on Saturday. Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.
YouTube/WatchNDNotre Dame got a much-needed win on Saturday over Syracuse and the latest ICON video takes us behind the scenes of the back-and-forth contest.It hasn’t been an easy season for Notre Dame football. After a heartbreaking Week 1 loss at Texas and back-to-back losses at home to Michigan State and Duke, the Fighting Irish desperately needed a win against Syracuse on Saturday.Notre Dame got its win, in somewhat wild fashion, and the newest “Irish Connection” video takes us behind the scenes of the Irish getting back on track.As always, you get a look inside the team’s locker room and hear pregame speeches from assistant coaches. There’s also the customary footage of coaches and players on the sidelines.The video is complete with plenty of DeShone Kizer highlights as well. After all, he did have 471 passing yards and three touchdowns leading his team to a 50-33 victory.Fighting Irish head coach Brian Kelly delivers the message that this team can only get better and they certainly did look better as they got back in the win column.Notre Dame travels to North Carolina State this Saturday. Kickoff is set for noon E.T. and can be seen on ABC.
Stephan Lichtsteiner could be followed out of the Arsenal exit door by at least two more experienced defenders this summer as Unai Emery attempts to shake up the Gunners’ much maligned defence.The Switzerland international, who arrived from Juventus on a free transfer last year, announced on social media on Monday that he would be leaving the Emirates after just 12 months following an unsuccessful spell in north London.Arsenal could have kept Lichtsteiner for another season, but – as Goal revealed in May – Emery opted not to take up the option in the 35-year-old’s contract which would have seen it extended until the end of the 2019-20 campaign. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? And the former Juventus star is not the only defender expected to move on from Arsenal this summer following a season which saw the Gunners ship 50 goals in the Premier League.Skipper Laurent Koscielny could leave, as could Nacho Monreal and Shkodran Mustafi, with the club open to offers for all three players.Koscielny has been with Arsenal since 2010 and battled back to full fitness this season following 10 months out due to a ruptured Achilles.The 33-year-old still has a year left on his current deal, but is open to a new challenge – with Turkish side Fenerbahce one of several clubs believed to be interestedFenerbahce’s director of football, Damien Comolli, travelled to the Europa League final in Baku last week for transfer talks, with midfielder Mohamed Elneny also believed to be on his agenda.A return to France could be an option for Koscielny, with German side Bayer Leverkusen also said to be in the running.Monreal, meanwhile, also has a year left on his contract after Arsenal took up an option to extend his stay during the second half of last season.But with Emery keen to return to a flat back four next season and also looking to reduce the age of his squad, Arsenal would be open to letting Monreal leave should an acceptable offer come in.Another player who could be allowed to leave is Calum Chambers, despite the 24-year-old having enjoyed a fine spell out on loan with Fulham.The former Southampton man was named player of the season at Craven Cottage, although the majority of his 33 appearances came playing in a defensive midfield role.Chambers will return to Arsenal this summer and does not want to be loaned out again.He has fallen behind Rob Holding in the pecking order at the Emirates, however, and Holding is hopeful of returning from his cruciate ligament injury within the first two months of the 2019-20 campaign.So with Chambers’ stock relatively high due to his displays for Fulham, a tempting enough bid could see Arsenal cash in to bolster the transfer budget, which currently stands at around £45m.Emery is looking to clear the decks in defence to fund some new arrivals which he believes are necessary to improve a backline which has conceded 51 and 50 league goals in the past two seasons.Goal understands teenage Saint-Etienne centre-back William Saliba is a top target , with Arsenal having scouted the France youth international several times since the turn of the year.Saliba only signed a new long-term contract with the Ligue 1 side in April, but Saint-Etienne are aware it will be difficult to keep hold of their talented young defender amid mounting interest from overseas.Samuel Umtiti at Barcelona has been mentioned, but the France international looks to be financially out of reach – despite Barcelona being more than happy to allow him to leave. Arsenal have put the feelers out to several agents across Europe asking about the potential availability of certain defenders, but their failure to secure qualification for the Champions League has severely limited what targets they can focus on.Scouts watched Crystal Palace’s Aaron Wan-Bissaka extensively last season, with the club concerned about going into the coming campaign without a recognised right-back due to Hector Bellerin’s injury.But a potential move for Wan-Bissaka is now all but impossible due to the funds involved, with Paris Saint-Germain right-back Thomas Meunier being viewed as a cheaper option.Manchester United are also interested in Meunier, who admits he could leave the French capital this summer.“The press knows more than I do,” said the Belgium international. “There are great clubs, which is very interesting.“As a player of PSG, you are always in the spotlight. We have the level to join many other clubs. We’ll see.“I am looking forward to staying in Paris, but if I have to go to another club, I will leave.”
Lionel Messi has accused the referees of favouring Brazil as Argentina crashed out of the Copa America with a 2-0 defeat in the semi-final in Belo Horizonte.The Barcelona star again failed to have a decisive impact in the match for his nation as the hosts took the most of their opportunities with goals from Gabriel Jesus and Roberto Firmino in either half sealing a place in the final against either Chile or Peru.But Messi was scathing of the performance from the Video Assistant Referee and match official Roddy Zambrano , using a post-match interview to criticise the decision to not award a penalty to Sergio Aguero just prior to Firmino’s 71st minute strike. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare “They were not better than us. They found the net early and the second goal came from a penalty [to Aguero] they didn’t award,” Messi told reporters.”They [the officials] had booked a lot of bullsh*t, but they didn’t even check the VAR, that’s incredible.”That happened all over the game. At the first glance of contact, they ruled in their [Brazil’s] favour and this kind of bullsh*t distracted us from the game.”There is no excuses for us, but we need to review this, analyse it and let’s hope CONMEBOL does something about it.”I think we played a great game. We made a great effort and they were not superior to us.”Argentina had 10 more shots at Brazilian goalkeeper Alisson than their opponents managed in attack (14-4) and struck the woodwork twice as they came agonisingly close to getting back into the contest.Aguero looped a header onto the crossbar with Alisson well beaten in the first half shortly after Jesus gave Brazil the lead and Messi slammed a shot into the post in the second period after Lautaro Martinez’s drive was blocked.The Selecao took both of their chances clinically, only having four shots in the match, as Jesus and Firmino both side-footed into the net from close range after being teed up by the other.Brazil will now host the winner of Wednesday’s semi-final between Chile and Peru in a final to be hosted on Sunday at the Maracana.They will be aiming to win their first Copa America since triumphing in Venezuela during the 2007 edition.
TAMPA, FL – JANUARY 09: Quarterback Jalen Hurts #2 of the Alabama Crimson Tide celebrates after a touchdown by running back Bo Scarbrough #9 (not pictured) during the first quarter against the Clemson Tigers in the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship Game at Raymond James Stadium on January 9, 2017 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)The “Jalen Hurts is going to transfer” rumors didn’t take very long to start up tonight. It took, oh, one drive from Alabama’s offense, led by sophomore quarterback Tua Tagovailoa.Nick Saban said earlier today that he would be playing both of his quarterbacks against Louisville tonight. Tagovailoa, though, is the quarterback who got the start. And he looked good.Tagovailoa led Alabama on a touchdown drive featuring a couple of beautiful passes against the Cardinal’s defense.Hurts will likely see some playing time later in the game. It’s possible, knowing Nick Saban, that he’ll continue to play both quarterbacks for the majority of the season.But the writing seems to be on the wall for Hurts, at least for 2019. He can graduate this year and then play somewhere else right away next season.That talk has heated up tonight, unsurprisingly.“Jalen Hurts will be playing for _____ next season?” tweeted Ralph D. Russo.Jalen Hurts will be playing for _____ next season? https://t.co/UGAdcfKC27— Ralph D. Russo (@ralphDrussoAP) September 2, 2018It’s a fair question.There was talk of a Hurts transfer all offseason. Now that Tua has been named the starting quarterback (for this game, at least) that transfer talk for next season is only going to increase.For what it’s worth, Nick Saban has said all along that he’s really high on both players. Perhaps the competition isn’t over.“I think we have two guys that are weapons and they’ve both played well, so the plan is to play both guys in the game,” Saban told ESPN’s Chris Fowler before tonight’s game. “So the only issue is who plays first, and we’ll decide that when the time comes.”Alabama has decided that Tua Tagovailoa is going to play first. We’ll see if that continues to be true moving forward.
NEW ORLEANS, LA – JANUARY 01: Head coach Mike Gundy of the Oklahoma State Cowboys reacts in the second quarter against the Mississippi Rebels during the Allstate Sugar Bowl at Mercedes-Benz Superdome on January 1, 2016 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)It’s been the week of the transfer in the college football world and Oklahoma State’s program had one of the most-shocking departures in the country.Jalen McCleskey, a veteran wide receiver at Oklahoma State, announced this week that he was taking a redshirt year and would pursue other options in 2019. McCleskey, the leading wide receiver on Oklahoma State’s team in career yards, was not happy with his role this season.Mike Gundy and the Cowboys’ program apparently doesn’t want to talk about this. He reportedly gave an ultimatum to the team’s beat reporters, telling them they would lose access to players if they asked about it.Ocolly.com had the details on what happened:At 5 p.m. Tuesday, media members gathered in the west concourse of the stadium for weekly player availability after practice. Players are usually made available at about 5:30 p.m., but before the first player reached the waiting reporters, the ethical dilemma began.Gavin Lang, Gundy’s media relations coordinator, gathered the group of reporters and said Gundy threatened that if any reporter asks a player a question about McCleskey, then players would no longer be available to any media for the rest of the season.Reporters immediately took to the phones, calling editors and supervisors about what to do.You can view the full story here.Oklahoma State is set to play at Kansas on Saturday.
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – JANUARY 08: A detail of the official National Football League NFL logo is seen painted on the turf as the New York Giants host the Atlanta Falcons during their NFC Wild Card Playoff game at MetLife Stadium on January 8, 2012 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)A former college football star was released from his NFL team on Saturday afternoon. According to a report from Ian Rapoport, the Seattle Seahawks have finally moved on from former second-round pick Malik McDowell.Seattle selected the former Michigan State star early in the second round after NFL teams fell in love with his combine performance. Unfortunately an accident nearly derailed his NFL career.Just a few week before training camp kicked off, McDowell was involved in an ATV accident. He never played a down for the Seahawks in his first two seasons with the club.Here’s the report from Rapoport.The #Seahawks are finally and officially releasing former high draft pick DT Malik McDowell, source said. He will be on waivers and would like to continue his football career.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 2, 2019Seattle attempted to move on from the former Spartan when the team released him in July 2017. However, he went unclaimed and reverted back to the Seahawks’ non-football injury list.He’ll finally get the opportunity to move on with his NFL future and get the chance to prove he can still play at the highest level.The former No. 35 overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft hits the open market when the new league year kicks off on March 10. It’ll be interesting to see if any NFL team takes a chance on McDowell.Stay tuned for the latest NFL free agency news.
During ESPN’s College GameDay, Kirk Herbstreit spoke about both quarterbacks that will be on the field. He believes more pressure is on Ehlinger than Burrow.Here is Herbstreit’s preview, via 247Sports:“I think Sam does because of the opportunity Texas has in front of them,” Herbstreit said. “Texas has an opportunity to send a message to the country. He said they were back last year after beating Georgia in the Sugar Bowl and I think now he gets the big stage. College GameDay hasn’t been here in a long time. They’re playing a big-time brand in LSU with big games down the road.”“If they’re able to knock off LSU, think about the position that would put Texas in the non-conference heading into Big 12 play. Sam has a big opportunity to kind of send a message and I’m sure he’s anxious to try and take advantage of that.”Ehlinger should be motivated in this matchup since LSU fans somehow got a hold of his phone number and sent him hundreds of texts.Texas and LSU would raise their stock with a victory tonight. PASADENA, CA – JANUARY 05: Broadcaster Kirk Herbstreit speaks onstage during the “BCS Title Game” panel at the ESPN portion of the 2011 Winter TCA press tour held at the Langham Hotel on January 5, 2011 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)The biggest game of the weekend is receiving proper treatment from ESPN, as College GameDay is in Austin to preview tonight’s Texas-LSU showdown.LSU dismantled Georgia Southern in its season opener in large part because of its new offense. Passing game coordinator Joe Brady has give that unit new life.Although Joe Burrow has proven that he’s a game-changer at quarterback, the Longhorns have their own superstar under center as well. Sam Ehlinger is most likely going to make the biggest difference in this matchup.Not only is Ehlinger an early candidate to win the Heisman Trophy, but the dual-threat quarterback is the heart and soul of his team.