Daily Archives: November 3, 2017

Jose Mourinho: Manchester United players deserve more credit

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Jose Mourinho has claimed that Tottenham’s victory over Real Madrid this week proves his Manchester United players deserve more credit.

Tottenham beat the European champions 3-1 at Wembley on Wednesday, just four days after they were beaten 1-0 at Old Trafford.

Criticisms has been levelled at Mourinho’s styling of Manchester United this season, despite his team sitting second in the Premier League table and top of their Champions League group, and the United manager insists they should get more recognition.

“Honestly, just as an example,” the Portuguese said. “Tottenham beat Liverpool 4-1, Tottenham beat Real Madrid 3-1, Tottenham didn’t score against Manchester United so at least a little bit of credit my players deserve.”

“I know that it is a different way of analysing things for this reason or that reason. Similar performances for some clubs are magic, are examples of brilliant tactics and amazing attitude from the other players and for other teams the same kind of performance becomes conservative, becomes negative, becomes so many adjectives.”

Jose Mourinho is also due in court in Madrid on Friday to face allegations of tax fraud. While the Portuguese is set to appear in person but insists the hearing is not a distraction. “It is just a change of normal training time because I want to be there and I cannot be in the morning so I have to change the timings,” he added.

In the meantime, another tough challenge awaits United as the Red Devils, still without Paul Pogba and Marouane Fellaini, visit defending Premier League champions Chelsea on Sunday. Both appears to have little chance to be fit in time to play against the Blues this weekend.

“We have to wait a little bit,” Mourinho added. “I am not very optimistic but I don’t want to lie. I don’t want you to say I lie when I said no chance of recovering so I just say two more days to confirm my expectations.”

On the other hand, Chelsea themselves suffered a 3-0 drubbing at the hands of Roma, with club coach Antonio Conte claiming that his players lack “hunger” for success. Another point also goes to United in their record of claiming points even against top teams in the English top flight.

Prediction:

Chelsea 1-1 Manchester United

England: Gareth Southgate drops stars for international friendlies

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England coach Gareth Southgate has dropped a handful of stars ahead of international friendly games against Brazil and Germany.

Southgate dropped a total of seven players after he claimed that there were people in his squad who had not necessarily justified their inclusions and were in fact, lucky to be involved during their last international fixture.

“I don’t think anybody can sit back and safely think they’re going to be involved next summer,” he said. “In every position on the field there’s really strong competition. If I had to do it tomorrow [pick a squad] I’d know who I’d take, but over the next six months that could evolve drastically.”

Former U-21 coach Southgate also said that some players who were in his squad for the World Cup qualifiers “are not playing regularly with their club at the moment”. Forwards Alex Oxlade‑Chamberlain, Daniel Sturridge and Jermain Defoe, as well as the Manchester United defender Chris Smalling are amongst the prominent stars dropped by the manager.

“We want to play a certain way,” Southgate added. “We want to see the players we’ve brought in using the ball from the back and building up in a certain way. I have huge respect for Chris and he’s obviously at a big club. I think he can [play that way]. But we have players like John Stones, Eric Dier and Harry Maguire who are even better.”

In place of the dropped players Southgate has called up a trio of uncapped players in Joe Gomez, Tammy Abraham and Ruben Loftus‑Cheek, with the manager also insisting that this was the time to experiment and try to help shape the England squad.

“Now we’ve got a phase where, OK, let’s see what’s possible here: how can we evolve the team, how can we take it forward, how can we give some of the young players that we’ve seen over the summer coming through?” he explained.

“And whether I see the benefit of that, or whether other England managers down the line see the benefit of that, I think it’s the right thing to do for English football.”

Marseille’s Patrice Evra sent off for kicking out at supporter

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Patrice Evra conjured memories of Eric Cantona after being sent off for aiming a kick at a Marseille supporter before his side’s Europa League game at Vitoria de Guimaraes.

The Frenchman was ushered away by a team-mate but not before creating history as the first player to be sent off in a Europa League match before kick-off.

Marseille, who then also had Boubacar Kamara dismissed during the match proper, went down 1-0 in what would be their second defeat in the Group I.

The incident occurred as tempers flared during the pre-match warm-up for the Europa League game between Vitoria Guimaraes and Marseille, which saw supporters and players clashing.

Pictures and video footage appeared to show the Evra, 36, kicking a fan in the head at the side of the pitch in Portugal with the former French International appearing to lash out at one of his own club’s fans as supporters reached the advertising hoardings at the Estadio D Afonso Henriques in Guimaraes.

The ugly incident was reminiscent of Evra’s French compatriot Eric Cantona, whose infamous kung-fu kick at Selhurst Park in 1995 when the Manchester United player was sent off for attacking the Crystal Palace supporter Matthew Simmons.

Cantona was banned for nine months by the Football Association for the incident, after leaving the pitch following a red card.

Likewise, Evra would now face a lengthy UEFA ban while his future at Marseille will come under fierce scrutiny in the coming days, with club coach Rudi Garcia disclaiming his actions.

“Pat has experience and he must not react, it’s obvious” he said.

“Patrice is a more than experienced player and we cannot respond to insults so low and so incredible because they come from one of our supporters. He must learn to keep his cool.”