Football

Result: Manchester City ease past managerless Huddersfield Town

Manchester City close the gap on Liverpool at the top of the Premier League table back to four points courtesy of a 3-0 victory over Huddersfield Town. Manchester City have closed the gap on Liverpool at the top of the Premier League table back to four points courtesy of a 3-0 win over Huddersfield Town at the John Smith’s Stadium this afternoon. Danilo gave the champions the lead in the first half, but Huddersfield held their own for much of the opening 45 minutes and it was not until the second half that City showed something close to their best. Two goals in as many minutes from Raheem Sterling and Leroy Sane took the game away from the hosts, though, as Man City responded to Liverpool’s victory over Crystal Palace yesterday with a comfortable triumph of their own. © Reuters...

Naysmith will focus on quality with new recruits

Doonhamers boss vows to do things differently to last season. Queen of the South manager Gary Naysmith insists he will not just add to his squad for the sake of it as they gear up to try to eliminate Dundee in their forthcoming William Hill Scottish Cup fourth round replay. Naymsith watched his Championship side prove a match for Jim McIntyre’s Premiership hosts in Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Dens Park. Stephen Dobbie’s 28th minute opener was cancelled out by Jesse Curran’s equaliser on the stroke of half-time for the Dark Blues. The Doonhamers boss admits it will be a tough ask to try to see off Dundee on January 29, with a push for promotion also planned. However, he will not repeat last season’s mistake of bringing in bodies who are not up to the task. Naysmith explained: “All credit to the ...

Denis Suarez ‘drops Arsenal hints’

Denis Suarez likes a series of Arsenal-related posts on social media amid suggestions that the Barcelona midfielder is nearing a move to the Gunners. Barcelona midfielder Denis Suarez has liked a series of Arsenal-related posts on social media, fuelling suggestions that the Spaniard is on the verge of joining the Gunners. Suarez was involved in Barcelona’s Copa del Rey last-16 second leg against Levante on Thursday night, but the 25-year-old has struggled for regular action during the 2018-19 campaign. Arsenal have been strongly linked with a move for the attacker in recent weeks and it is understood that the Gunners are on the verge of taking Suarez on an initial loan, which could be made permanent at the end of the campaign. An agreement has reportedly not yet been reached though w...

Clarke weighing up options on young Kilmarnock hopeful Kiltie

Kilmarnock manager Steve Clarke insists Greg Kiltie has a big future at Rugby Park but revealed he could let him go out on loan if he can strengthen his side during the transfer window. Kiltie made just his sixth appearance of the season in Killie’s 2-0 William Hill Scottish Cup fourth round win over Forfar. The talented 22-year-old attacker had been dogged by injury problems in recent campaigns and Clarke felt, prior to his arrival as manager, these were mismanaged as he was rushed back to action too quickly. After opting to use him sparingly in the first half of the campaign, Clarke knows Kiltie is pushing for greater involvement. And as loan star Greg Stewart will not be returning to Rugby Park, having now joined Aberdeen on loan after being recalled by parent club Birmingham, the...

Southampton have right balance to stay clear of relegation zone – Hasenhuttl

Ralph Hasenhuttl believes Southampton have found the right “balance” to kick clear of the Premier League relegation scrap. The Austrian boss hailed his back-three of Jack Stephens, Jan Bednarek and Jannik Vestergaard for helping transform Saints’ play both on and off the ball. James Ward-Prowse and an own goal from Andre Gomes sealed Saints’ 2-1 win over Everton at St Mary’s on Saturday, leaving manager Hasenhuttl boosted by the quick progress on his watch. Former RB Leipzig boss Hasenhuttl already boasts four wins in eight top-flight matches, where predecessor Mark Hughes claimed just three in 22. “Jack Stephens has taken the place from Maya Yoshida, and you’d think he’s been playing all the time, in this back five,” said Hasenhuttl. “We’ve worked a lot with this back five and we’ve found...

Jota basks in the joy of Wolves’ first top-flight treble for 42 years

Diogo Jota hailed his special treble after he scored Wolves’ first top flight hat-trick for 42 years. The forward’s injury-time strike sealed a pulsating 4-3 win over Leicester at Molineux on Saturday. The 22-year-old became the first Wolves player since John Richards in 1977 – also against Leicester – to score a treble in the top flight. Diogo Jota celebrates scoring Wolves’ third goal against Leicester (Mike Egerton/PA) Jota told the club’s official site: “It’s really special, a hat-trick, I know it’s not happened in a long time. This is the second of my career, so it’s like giving your team the win, it feels very good. “This is the kind of game I watched as a kid and now being part of it is a good moment for me. In the end, when we win it is the best feeling in the world. “It was a very...

Chelsea must use Arsenal defeat as motivation – Marcos Alonso

Marcos Alonso insists Chelsea must use their defeat at Arsenal as motivation – after Blues boss Maurizio Sarri slammed his players following their performance at the Emirates Stadium. The Gunners ran out deserved 2-0 winners on Saturday as Alexandre Lacazette and Laurent Koscielny scored first-half goals for Unai Emery’s side. The Premier League victory takes Arsenal within three points of fourth-placed Chelsea, while a resurgent Manchester United are also the same distance away from the Champions League positions. Sarri launched an unexpected rant at his players in his post-match press conference. Speaking in his native Italian, an angry Sarri accused his squad of being “extremely difficult” to motivate. But Alonso is keen to use the Arsenal display to act as that motiva...

Hunt pleased by “gentleman” Cech’s response to clash

Stephen Hunt has thanked Arsenal star Petr Cech for not taking an “easy shot” at him after his challenge left the goalkeeper with a fractured skull. Cech, who announced his impending retirement from football earlier this week, was injured during his then club Chelsea‘s 1-0 Premier League victory at Hunt’s Reading in October 2006. The Czech Republic international, who has worn a protective helmet on the pitch since, underwent emergency surgery to repair a depressed fracture of his skull after being carried from the pitch, leaving Hunt in the firing line. The former Royals and Republic of Ireland midfielder told BBC Radio 5 Live’s Sportsweek show: “I don’t know him personally, I don’t know him that well, but for him it would have been very easy...

Derek McInnes: games coming thick and fast will help Aberdeen

The Dons will have two games a week for the next three weeks. Derek McInnes believes games coming thick and fast will help Aberdeen after they almost became victims of a William Hill Scottish Cup shock after a 1-1 draw with Stenhousemuir. Despite the home side taking the lead through the returning loanee Max Lowe after 20 minutes, Mark McGuigan’s second-half header earned the Warriors a replay at Ochilview on Tuesday January 29. That means the Dons will have two games a week for the next three weeks, after a packed December saw them play nine games in the month leading up to the winter break. McInnes said: “I look forward to the Hamilton game. I think we’ll be better for having had the game today in terms of match sharpness, and we’ll be better in the replay for having a couple of games be...

United should go “all out” for Pochettino, says Wayne Rooney

Former England forward believes the Argentinian is the best long-term replacement for Jose Mourinho. Mauricio Pochettino “ticks every box” to be the next long-term manager of Manchester United, according to club record goalscorer Wayne Rooney. The Tottenham boss has been strongly linked with the Old Trafford vacancy since the sacking of Jose Mourinho last month, and Rooney believes his record at Spurs makes him the ideal candidate for the job. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is in interim charge of United and has overseen seven wins out of seven since taking on the role, with the latest success being a 2-1 Premier League victory over Brighton on Saturday. Wayne Rooney wants Mauricio Pochettino at Old Trafford. pic.twitter.com/Pb1qEtPFWk — ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) January 19, 2019 Rooney, working as an analy...

Liverpool finding way to beat Palace was crucial in title race – Henderson

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson admits it was crucial they found a way to win and maintain the pace in the title race on Saturday despite not being at their best. Having conceded just 10 goals in 22 Premier League matches, Liverpool uncharacteristically shipped three at home to Crystal Palace in a chaotic 4-3 victory at Anfield. Having been 1-0 down at half-time – despite dominating – the hosts twice bounced back to go 2-1 and 4-2 up in a manic conclusion which also saw stand-in right-back James Milner sent off for a second bookable offence. It was the first time Jurgen Klopp‘s side had conceded three in a league match since victory over Manchester City by the same scoreline a year ago and, while Henderson was not happy with the performance, he accepted the result – that briefly e...

Canning calls for a united Hamilton

Martin Canning is appealing for a united front as he prepares Hamilton for the  crucial midweek home clash with Aberdeen. The 2-0 weekend William Hill Scottish Cup defeat at St Johnstone prompted open hostility from a section of Accies fans. However, the Accies manager was more concerned by claims that his father had felt it advisable to leave McDiarmid Park after a confrontation with critics which had attracted the attention of stewards. Upset by first-half Saints goals gift-wrapped by stand-in goalkeeper Ryan Fulton to Jason Kerr and Tony Watt, visiting supporters appeared to squabble amongst themselves before order was restored. Canning made it clear he could handle criticism but condemned a minority of followers for their behaviour, saying: “I can’t accept it if my dad has been abused ...

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