Daily Archives: October 14, 2016

Wenger backs Southgate for permanent England role

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Arsene Wenger believes that England has an outstanding candidate to be appointed as the next permanent manager in Gareth Southgate.

Wenger, whose contract with Arsenal expires until the end of the season, had been linked as one of the candidates to take over the England job after Sam Allardyce’s prompt dismissal last month.

However, new reports indicated that Arsenal would offer him a new contract, and the Frenchman had also gradually distanced himself from the possibility of taking the England job next summer.

This also meant that Wenger would be extending his time managing in the Premier League up to more than 20 years.

“Is Southgate the outstanding candidate for the job? Yes,” Wenger said, when a question was put forth to him ahead of Arsenal’s clash with Swansea City.

“In England, there’s always the demand for the big names – that is the difficulty. What is most important to me is the competence of the person and, if a person is competent, then he can make a name for himself.”

“He [Southgate] has a good opportunity to show that. I’m happy to see that he has an opportunity to show that he has quality. He has handled himself quite well.”

“He has accumulated experiences, first with Middlesbrough and now with the FA. He was a good observer of what was going on in the English national team and, after that, we’re in a job where you are questioned, especially when you have less experience.”

“The only answer he can give is by doing his job, and our job is selection and decision making. He has to show that the decisions he makes are the right ones, and that he has the strength to do what he believes is right.”

Mike Phelan appointed permanent manager of Hull City

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Mike Phelan has been promoted as the permanent manager of Hull City after working as caretaker manager at the club for three months.

Phelan, 54, stepped up from the role of assistant manager after Steve Bruce resigned on 22 July after disagreements with the Allam family, Hull’s owner, over a lack of player transfers.

“It’s been a while in coming, but I’m happy with the position I am now in and looking forward to the challenge ahead,” he told the club’s official website.

“It has taken time but things have to be done correctly with these matters. What is important now is that we move forward and help this squad of players be successful for this football club.

“It’s exciting to step over that threshold into management, and I’m looking forward to working with this group of players that has done so well so far.

“The support I have received from everyone has been magnificent and I want that to continue because the challenges ahead are huge. The fans have been excellent through the last few months and the players have given me their full backing. I’m looking forward to what is to come now so roll on the next few games.”

Previously Sir Alex Ferguson’s assistant at Manchester United, Phelan has impressed all by overcoming a raft of injuries to senior players to collect a respectable seven points from seven Premier League games while also leading the team into the last 16 of the League Cup.

However, the Tigers need to up their next game against Bournemouth given that they have suffered two straight defeats and fell to 15th in the Premier League, or face the threat of relegation.

Prediction:

Bournemouth (2) – (1) Hull City

Tottenham suffers Dembele injury blow amidst pursuit of City

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Tottenham will have a harder time chasing down Manchester City on top of the Premier League table after suffering another injury setback in Mousa Dembele.

Dembele, 29, sustained a foot injury in training that, according to Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino, is causing him pain when he kicks the ball.

As the Belgian undergoes further tests later today, it is unclear whether he will be available to play at West Bromwich Albion on Saturday, or for how long he will be sidelined.

However, it is acknowledged that the injury was a recurring one.

“He got a problem against Sunderland and then he got a knock in his foot and that is an old problem,” Pochettino said.

“He is now recovering from that. It’s minor but for him it’s painful. When he touches the ball it’s always painful for him.”

Dembele had missed Tottenham’s first four matches of the season because of the suspension that he received at the end of the previous campaign for gouging the eye of Chelsea’s Diego Costa.

He has played only twice since – as a half-time substitute in the Champions League tie against Monaco on 14 September and then as a starter against Sunderland.

However, he was taken off in the 74th minute with what Pochettino initially thought was cramp in his hamstring but the problem turned out to be more serious.

Preditcion:

West Bromwich Albion (0) – (1) Tottenham