League

Gordon Smith warns Steven Gerrard not to put Europa League first

Former Rangers striker Gordon Smith has warned Steven Gerrard he cannot allow the Europa League to get in the way of attempts to halt Celtic reaching nine titles in a row. Smith’s old side could be set for a daunting trip to Kosovo as they begin their quest for the group stages. Gerrard’s side have landed either FC Prishtina – who finished second in the Kosovan Superleague last term – or St Joseph’s of Gibraltar in the first qualifying round. The Light Blues’ potential opponents meet over two legs on June 27 and July 4 to decide who will host the Glasgow giants in the first leg, provisionally scheduled for July 11. If Prishtina make it through, it will mean a 3,500-mile round trip to the Balkan state for starters as Gerrard looks to repeat last season’s feat, ...

Daniel Arzani confident Celtic will reach Champions League group stages

Daniel Arzani has backed Celtic to advance to the Champions League group stages and join the cream of Europe. The Hoops will again have to do it the hard way after being handed a tough draw against Bosnian side Sarajevo in their opening qualifying tie. Neil Lennon‘s side will take on a side managed by former Hearts striker Husref Musemic as they seek to reach the group stages for a third time in four years. On-loan Manchester City winger Arzani believes it is harsh that the Scottish champions still have to take such an arduous route to the group stages given their recent achievements. 🌍 #CelticFC have been drawn against FK Sarajevo in the @ChampionsLeague First Qualifying Round. 🏆🍀 Full fixture confirmation to follow. #UCL pic.twitter.com/AGagUNb6Q9 — Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC)...

Rangers to face either Kosovan or Gibraltarian team in Europa League

Steven Gerrard’s side have been pitted against either FC Prishtina or St Joseph’s of Gibraltar in the first qualifying round of the Europa League. Rangers could face a daunting trip to Kosovo as they begin their Europa League quest. Steven Gerrard‘s side have landed either FC Prishtina – who finished second in the Kosovo Superliga last term – or St Joseph’s of Gibraltar in the first qualifying round. The teams meet over two legs on June 27 and July 4 to decide who will take on the Light Blues. The Glasgow giants are provisionally scheduled to travel away from home for the first leg on July 11, with the Ibrox return pencilled in for July 18. If Prishtina make it through, it will mean a 3,500-mile round-trip to the Balkan state for starters as Gerrard looks to repeat ...

Celtic learn possible opponents for opening Champions League qualifier

Celtic face a trip to Eastern Europe or Malta in their opening Champions League qualifier after UEFA confirmed the groupings for Tuesday’s first-round draw. The seeded Scottish champions have been told they will face either Malta’s Valletta, Bosnian league winners FK Sarajevo, FK Sutjeska Niksic of Montenegro, Albanian’s Partizani or Saburtalo of Georgia. It means there will be no repeat of 2017’s controversial trip to Linfield, when striker Leigh Griffiths was targeted with a bottle thrown from the home support in Belfast. The draw takes place at noon UK time in Nyon, Switzerland and will be followed by the draw for round two. The Hoops – who only rounded off their historic triple treble campaign against Hearts at Hampden 23 days ago – are due back in action on Jul...

Enda Stevens: ‘Sheffield United will enjoy Premier League return’

Sheffield United defender Enda Stevens regrets his side will not be launching their first season back in the Premier League with an opening-day fixture at Bramall Lane. The Blades, who ended their 12-year top-flight exile by pipping Leeds to the Sky Bet Championship’s second automatic promotion place last month, will play at Bournemouth on the opening weekend of the 2019-20 campaign on August 10. Chris Wilder‘s side then face back-to-back home games against Crystal Palace and Leicester before completing their August league fixtures with a trip to Europa League winners Chelsea. “I just wanted a home game really to experience Bramall Lane again, the feelgood factor and to get that back,” Stevens said. “It’s something you miss when you stop playing and to b...

Fans advised to shop around for Premier League TV fixtures

Avid armchair football fans are being advised to shop around if they want access to all 200 televised Premier League matches next season, with Amazon Prime, BT Sport and Sky Sports sharing the domestic rights. The 2019-20 fixtures were revealed on Thursday morning, with the first game being newly-promoted Norwich’s visit to European champions Liverpool on Friday, August 9. That game will be the first of 128 to be broadcast live by Sky Sports next season, with the campaign’s second game – West Ham versus champions Manchester City on Saturday, August 10 – being the first of 52 on BT Sport. Amazon, the market’s new entrants, will show two rounds of midweek fixtures in December, the first at the start of the month includes the Merseyside derby at Anfield and Spurs’ visi...

Manchester City to begin Premier League title defence at West Ham United

Manchester City will start the defence of their Premier League title at West Ham. The 2019-20 fixtures, announced on Thursday morning, handed Pep Guardiola’s team an opening match at a venue which has proved to be productive for them since 2017. City, who have won successive Premier League titles, have picked up three points in east London in the last three seasons – scoring four goals on each occasion. The champions follow their August 10 lunchtime trip to the London Stadium with a home match against Tottenham. Games against Bournemouth, Brighton, Norwich and Watford follow. Manchester City’s Leroy Sane (centre) celebrates scoring the first of his two goals in November’s 4-0 win at West Ham (Dominic Lipinski/PA) Liverpool, pipped by a point to the title by City, get next season up and run...

Liverpool, Manchester City handed kind starts to 2019-20 Premier League season

The new season’s Premier League fixtures point to last season’s title rivals Manchester City and Liverpool continuing their strong opening-day records. City have started their season with a win for the last eight years in succession while the Reds have won five of their last six. And with West Ham and Norwich respectively awaiting them, there appears little resistance this time around. (PA Graphic) The Hammers have lost on day one for the last three seasons, including back-to-back 4-0 defeats at Manchester United and Liverpool, while City have won 4-0, 4-1 and 4-0 away to the Hammers in the last three seasons. Sergio Aguero has the most opening-day goals in the Premier League among the competition’s active players, with six. He has not netted in any of those three wins at...

Premier League fixture release: Five games to look out for in 2019-20

Matches which catch the eye in 2019-20. The Premier League fixtures for the 2019-20 season were released on Thursday. Here, Press Association Sport highlights five games to look out for. Liverpool v Man City, November 9 Leroy Sane celebrates scoring City’s winner against Liverpool at the Etihad Stadium in January (Martin Rickett/PA) Pep Guardiola’s back-to-back Premier League champions renew their rivalry with Jurgen Klopp’s European champions in their first meeting since landing their latest respective silverware. Liverpool pushed City all the way in an epic title race last season and have home advantage as they bid to draw first blood in pursuit of their first domestic crown in 30 years. Guardiola’s side will be equally determined to maintain the edge after beatin...

Five talking points from the Premier League fixture release

Manchester City have a favourable start and end to the season but title rivals Liverpool get Champions League help. The Premier League fixtures for 2019-20 were announced this morning. Here, Press Association Sport takes a look at some of the stories behind the schedule. Advantage City City appear to have a kinder start and run-in (Martin Rickett/PA) Only a point separated the top two last season and it could be all about fine margins again in 2019-20. If that is the case, Manchester City seem to have been dealt a kinder hand, with a home game against Tottenham appearing to be the most challenging fixture in their first and last six games. In contrast, Liverpool have Arsenal, Chelsea and Newcastle in their first six – and finish against the trio. But Liverpool get home help after European ...

Roma withdraw from pre-season ICC due to Europa League commitments

The Serie A club will be replaced by Fiorentina. Roma have announced their withdrawal from the International Champions Cup, with Fiorentina taking their place. The Serie A club had been scheduled to face Chivas Guadalajara, Arsenal and Benfica in the United States in July. However, Roma enter next season’s Europa League in the second qualifying round, the first leg of which will be played the day after they were set to face Benfica in New Jersey. We will now face @ACFFiorentina in Charlotte, NC 🇺🇸 — Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) June 12, 2019 “We looked at every available option in order to avoid withdrawing, however, in the end, the decision had to be made in light of next season’s commitments,” Roma chief executive Guido Fienga told the club’s website. “I apol...

Sharing England squad with Liverpool’s Champions League winners ‘draining’, admits Rose

Rose was part of the Tottenham side who lost the final in Madrid. Tottenham defender Danny Rose says it has been difficult to spend time around Liverpool players during England’s Nations League campaign. Liverpool beat Spurs 2-0 in Madrid to lift their sixth European Cup, just five days before the Three Lions’ first match in Portugal. England manager Gareth Southgate opted against starting any of the seven members of his squad who were involved in that game as his side lost their semi-final against Holland on Thursday. Liverpool were 2-0 winners in the Champions League final (Peter Byrne/PA) Rose, whose future at Spurs remains uncertain, was one of six recalled for Sunday’s third-place play-off against Switzerland, which England won on penalties. While he did not feel physically tired at t...

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