Daily Archives: November 1, 2017

Sean Dyche: five years in charge of Burnley marked with win

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Burnley marked Sean Dyche’s fifth anniversary as manager with a win thanks to Jeff Hendrick’s second league goal that earned the Clarets a 1-0 win over Newcastle.

Burnley leapfrogged Newcastle to climb to seventh place yet both played dully, with little highlights in the game despite early commitments to go forward.

Indeed, the only attempt on target in the first half came from Newcastle when Atsu set up Jonjo Shelvey for a shot, the midfielder striking it well from just inside the area but firing it straight at Nick Pope in the Burnley goal.

While the Magpies continue to look to Shelvey for offensive ideas, the midfielder was erratic and had misplaced a couple of straightforward passes. On the occasion of a free kick, the Englishman tried to catch Burnley out with a quick free-kick and succeeded only in passing the ball to an opponent.

The second half opened with a couple more attempts on goal, first from Newcastle with Ayoze Perez’s curling but tame shot and then in Burnley’s next attack James Tarkowski got his head to a Brady free-kick but could only direct the ball straight at Rob Elliot.

The game was heading to an almost foreseen goalless conclusion when Hendrick tapped home Johann Berg Gudmundsson’s fine cross after Rob Elliot had beaten away Jack Cork’s effort to earn a win for Burnley in a milestone for Dyche in an otherwise unmemorable game.

In addition to five years and three points the manager will also be celebrating a fourth clean sheet in seven games, and while Dyche was not positively ecstatic he was no less pleased with the result.

“When you’re us you can’t go out and play fantastic football every week, you have to fight for your wins,” he said, not unreasonably. “I knew this game would be tight. Newcastle are very organised under Rafa(el Benitez) and we had to work hard to break them down. It’s very difficult when your opponents stay as resolute as Newcastle did.”

Premier League champions Chelsea humiliated at Roma

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Premier League champions Chelsea were humiliated at Roma as the Serie A runners-up earned a comprehensive 3-0 victory.

Roma’s rout had begun in just 39 seconds, with their first goal immediately following an attack on the other end. Pedro had shot weakly at Alisson Becker, allowing Roma to clear with the ball lobbed long to to Edin Dzeko, who knocked it down to the edge of the Chelsea box for Stephan El Shaarawy to catch it on the half volley and sent the ball fizzing into the corner.

Antonio Rudiger, on his return to his former club gifted them their second as he through to Thibaut Courtois, while Stephan El Shaarawy sprinted between the two players and slotted home clinically for his second.

While Chelsea continued to challenge Becker through attempts from Eden Hazard and Alvaro Morata but failed to make a breakthrough.

Their defensive frailties was subsequently exploited for a third time as Cesc Fabregas gives the ball away outside his own penalty area, allowing Diego Perotti a shoot from the edge of the area that into left-hand corner past the Courtois.

Roma should have got their fourth when Chelsea’s defenders all ran to Dzeko, who managed to square to a totally unmarked Perotti, but he fired over when he should have finished.

The Blues were hugely fortunate that Atletico Madrid failed to beat Qarabag, allowing them an easier chance to qualify.

They currently four points above third-placed Atletico — and a win in their next Champions League game at Qarabag will take them through.

As for Roma, a team currently fifth in Serie A, now lead the group by a point.

Marcelo relishes Tottenham test amidst challenging times for Real

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Real Madrid defender Marcelo is aware of the threat Tottenham poses even as Los Blancos suffers a dip in form.

Either side could guarantee their progress from Group H with two games to spare in their group stage encounter later today.

However, though Real are unbeaten in Europe this season their domestic form has been worrying, with Sunday’s shock defeat at Girona leaving them eight points behind Barcelona after 10 league matches.

“Despite everything we’re not going to lose our heads,” he added. “We need to stay cool, calm and collected at this moment and work hard to put things right.”

Marcelo also went on to defend Tottenham Hotspur against accusations that they are dependent on striker Harry Kane as a team, but admitted that the striker’s absence could have a profound impact on Real Madrid’s return Champions League fixture against Spurs at Wembley.

“For me it does make a big difference if he is not fit,” Marcelo said. “Kane is a very important player, but Tottenham are far more than just one player.”

“I’ve seen many of their matches and I’ve seen Harry Kane do great things but I’ve also seen the rest of their team produce great things out on the pitch. For us the most important thing is not just to think about Kane but rather to consider the group, and be ready to take on the team as a whole.”

Meanwhile, Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane suggested that there were aspects of Real’s current troubles that he actually enjoys.

“After a defeat of course people aren’t happy but in some ways I actually like this,” he said. “I like the motivation of a big match coming, so we can get back to winning ways.”

“This is something that inspires me. When the going gets tough, that’s when I’m at my best. Life after all is like this: there are hard moments but you need to work through them and come back stronger.”