• Udinese vs SPAL

    09 Jul 2020, 00:00 CEST

    This is a very close match-up. In 10,000 simulations Udinese won 35.7%, SPAL won 36.0% and there was a 28.3% chance of a draw. Overall, the average simulation score is Udinese 1.3 to SPAL 1.3. In simulation wins, Udinese averages 13.0 shots and 4.2 shots on goal. They average 2.2 goals in simulated victories vs just 0.6 in simulation losses. When SPAL wins they average 13.6 shots and 4.8 shots on goal. They average 2.2 goals in simulated victories vs just 0.6 in simulation losses.

  • Philadelphia Union vs Chicago Fire

    09 Jul 2020, 00:00 CEST

    There is a 27.6% chance of a draw. In simulations where the game is not a draw Chicago Fire, at 45.1%, are heavy favorites to beat Philadelphia Union who have a 27.3% chance. In simulation wins, Philadelphia Union upsets Chicago Fire by averaging 9.1 shots and 3.7 shots on goal. They average 2.2 goals in simulated victories vs just 0.5 in simulation losses. Overall, the average simulation score is Chicago Fire 1.5 to Philadelphia Union 1.1.

  • Colorado Rapids vs Los Angeles FC

    09 Jul 2020, 00:00 CEST

    There is a 8.2% chance of a draw. In simulations where the game is not a draw Los Angeles FC, at 85.7%, are heavy favorites to beat Colorado Rapids who have a 6.1% chance. In simulation wins, Colorado Rapids upsets Los Angeles FC by averaging 13.5 shots and 6.2 shots on goal. They average 3.9 goals in simulated victories vs just 1.7 in simulation losses. Overall, the average simulation score is Los Angeles FC 5.3 to Colorado Rapids 1.9.

  • Levante vs Mallorca

    09 Jul 2020, 00:00 CEST

    There is a 29.3% chance of a draw. In simulations where the game is not a draw Mallorca, at 40.9%, are solid favorites to beat Levante who have a 29.8% chance. In simulation wins, Levante upsets Mallorca by averaging 9.4 shots and 3.7 shots on goal. They average 2.0 goals in simulated victories vs just 0.5 in simulation losses. Overall, the average simulation score is Mallorca 1.3 to Levante 1.1.

  • Leganes vs Eibar

    09 Jul 2020, 00:00 CEST

    There is a 38.4% chance of a draw. In simulations where the game is not a draw Eibar, at 41.3%, are heavy favorites to beat Leganes who have a 20.3% chance. In simulation wins, Leganes upsets Eibar by averaging 4.8 shots and 2.2 shots on goal. They average 1.4 goals in simulated victories vs just 0.2 in simulation losses. Overall, the average simulation score is Eibar 0.9 to Leganes 0.5.

  • Inter Miami vs Orlando City

    08 Jul 2020, 23:58 CEST

    There is a 25.1% chance of a draw. In simulations where the game is not a draw Orlando City, at 46.0%, are heavy favorites to beat Inter Miami who have a 28.9% chance. In simulation wins, Inter Miami upsets Orlando City by averaging 16.0 shots and 5.7 shots on goal. They average 2.7 goals in simulated victories vs just 0.9 in simulation losses. Overall, the average simulation score is Orlando City 2.0 to Inter Miami 1.5.

  • Bristol City 2-1 Hull City - Match Report

    Bristol City beat Hull in first game since sacking Lee Johnson

    08 Jul 2020, 23:34 CEST


    Goals from Famara Diedhiou and Jamie Paterson gave Bristol City a 2-1 win over relegation-threatened Hull in their first match since sacking head coach Lee Johnson.


    The hosts took a 41st-minute lead when Paterson’s first-time pass into the box found Diedhiou unmarked. The striker was given time and space to control the ball and slot it past George Long.


    Paterson doubled the advantage after 53 minutes with a superb right-footed free-kick from 30 yards that went in off the crossbar after Diedhiou had been fouled.


    Hull skipper Jordy De Wijs cut the deficit with a 60th-minute glancing header from George Honeyman’s free-kick on the left.


    But the Robins held on for their first win in 10 games, condemning their opponents to a place in the Sky Bet Championship’s bottom three with just four games left.


    Assistant head coach Dean Holden changed formation to 3-5-2 for his first game in caretaker charge, bringing in Jack Hunt, Filip Benkovic and Paterson.


    Hull boss Grant McCann also made three changes, including Angus MacDonald, Callum Elder and James Scott in his starting line-up.


    The home side had a setback in the first minute when centre-back Nathan Baker suffered what appeared to be a head injury and had to be replaced by Zak Vyner after lengthy treatment.


    Bristol City had the first efforts at goal, Nahki Wells shooting over and Paterson seeing an effort blocked. But Hull responded and Scott had a fierce drive deflected out for a corner.


    Neither side could exert much control before Diedhiou made the breakthrough to give the hosts a lead they barely deserved.


    During 10 minutes of first-half stoppage time, Mallik Wilks fired over for Hull, but it was one of few goal threats from either team before the break.


    Bristol City might have gone two up five minutes into the second half when Wells broke clear down the left and cut inside only to see his low shot well saved by Long.


    After Paterson’s goal, Long had to make another fine stop to keep out a Diedhiou volley. At the other end Tom Eaves, one of two half-time substitutes for Hull, had a shot deflected just wide.


    Reece Burke headed over for Hull moments after McCann had made his third change, sending on Josh Bowler for Scott.


    De Wijs breathed new life into the Tigers with his goal, and appeals for a penalty when Wilks went down were unanswered by referee Gavin Ward.


    Goalkeeper Dan Bentley protected Bristol City’s lead with a fine diving save from Wilks’ low drive, while at the other end Andreas Weimann shot wide when well placed.


    Bentley did well again to keep out a Bowler volley as Hull pressed for a late equaliser, but their efforts proved in vain.


  • West Ham United 0-1 Burnley - Match Report

    Jay Rodriguez nets winner as Burnley beat relegation-battling West Ham

    08 Jul 2020, 23:13 CEST


    West Ham missed the chance to climb further away from relegation trouble after Jay Rodriguez fired Burnley to a 1-0 Premier League victory.


    Rodriguez’s first-half goal, a bullet header in off the underside of the crossbar, boosted Burnley’s hopes of a place in Europe next season.


    The Hammers could not find a way through a resolute Clarets defence after the interval and remain four points clear of the bottom three.


    Visitors Burnley should have taken the lead when Matej Vydra collected Charlie Taylor’s cross on the six-yard line and laid the ball off to Erik Pieters, but the Dutchman blazed over.


    Vydra then met Ashley Westwood’s free-kick with a glancing header which flew straight into the arms of Lukasz Fabianski.


    West Ham began to look threatening, though, and Nick Pope had to block a volley from Tomas Soucek and keep out Michail Antonio’s angled drive with his feet.


    So it was against the run of play when Burnley took the lead in the 39th minute, Rodriguez darting in front of Aaron Cresswell and meeting Taylor’s cross with a fine header for his 10th goal of the season.


    The ball bounced down off the underside of the crossbar twice before finally spinning away from the flailing Fabianski and rolling over the line.


    Antonio had the chance to equalise immediately but blasted his shot into the sidenetting before Pope saved from Andriy Yarmolenko low down at his near post.


    James Tarkowski could count himself lucky to stay on the pitch early in the second half after planting his studs into the thigh of Jarrod Bowen.


    It was a similarly ugly challenge to the one which saw Arsenal’s Eddie Nketiah sent off 24 hours earlier, but referee Michael Oliver showed only a yellow card and the VAR chose not to intervene.


    Hammers boss David Moyes sent on West Ham’s record signing Sebastien Haller, fit again after a hip injury which had kept him out since the restart.


    Within seconds the French striker had a glorious opportunity to equalise, but showed his ring rust with a weak finish too close to Pope.


    Burnley had the ball in the net again when Chris Wood slid in Phil Bardsley’s cross but he was flagged offside.


    West Ham poured forward in search of an equaliser but Burnley held firm to stay on the fringes of the European places and keep the Hammers sweating for a little longer at least.


     


    Betting On Burnley's Next Match


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  • Internazionale vs Hellas Verona

    08 Jul 2020, 23:12 CEST

    There is a 28.0% chance of a draw. In simulations where the game is not a draw Internazionale, at 57.0%, are heavy favorites to beat Hellas Verona who have just a 15.1% chance to win at home. Overall, the average simulation score is Internazionale 1.5 to Hellas Verona 0.6. In simulation wins, Hellas Verona upsets Internazionale by averaging 8.6 shots and 3.6 shots on goal. They average 1.6 goals in simulated victories vs just 0.3 in simulation losses.

  • Sevilla vs Athletic Club

    08 Jul 2020, 23:11 CEST

    There is a 38.3% chance of a draw. In simulations where the game is not a draw Athletic Club, at 35.0%, are solid favorites to beat Sevilla who have a 26.7% chance. In simulation wins, Sevilla upsets Athletic Club by averaging 7.9 shots and 3.2 shots on goal. They average 1.5 goals in simulated victories vs just 0.2 in simulation losses. Overall, the average simulation score is Athletic Club 0.8 to Sevilla 0.6.

  • Luis Suarez strikes as Barcelona keep the pressure on LaLiga leaders Real Madrid

    Real are one point ahead of their rivals with a game in hand.

    08 Jul 2020, 22:59 CEST

    Barcelona moved to within one point of Real Madrid at the top of LaLiga with a 1-0 win over Espanyol, whose relegation was confirmed after defeat in a tempestuous derby where both sides finished with 10 men at the Nou Camp. Ansu Fati was introduced for the start of the second half but lasted just five minutes as he was shown a red card, upgraded from yellow after the video assistant referee intervened, for a studs up challenge on Fernando Calero. But Espanyol's one man advantage lasted just another three minutes as Pol Lozano was given his marching orders – again after initially being booked – for a rash challenge on Gerard Pique before Luis Suarez settled matters. After Antoine Griezmann's clever back-heel into the path of Lionel Messi led to the Argentinian's shot being blocked, Suarez was on hand to fire home the loose ball in the 56th minute. Messi's volley produced a sublime save from Espanyol goalkeeper Diego Lopez but Barca rarely looked like conceding and closed out the match with minimal fuss to keep realistic hopes alive of retaining their top-flight crown. Espanyol, meanwhile, will bow out of the Spanish top-flight for the first time since 1994. Remarkably, on the four previous occasions they have been relegated, they have immediately come straight back up. Elsewhere, Villarreal consolidated fifth spot in the table after a Santi Cazorla penalty double helped them to a 3-1 victory at sixth-placed Getafe. Cazorla slotted home from the spot in the 66th and 86th minutes, on both occasions after Moi Gomez had been adjudged to have been fouled in the box, with technology interfering on the second occasion.


    Hugo Duro had equalised in the 80th minute but after Cazorla netted for a second time, Ruben Pena struck in added-on time to make sure of the win for the visitors, who are three points behind fourth-placed Sevilla and the last Champions League qualifying berth. Tensions boiled over in the final moments as Villarreal midfielder Vicente Iborra and Getafe defender Allan Nyom were sent off. Guido Rodriguez, Alfonso Pedraza and William Carvalho struck as Real Betis moved up to 13th with a comfortable 3-0 victory over Osasuna. In Serie A, Atalanta moved up to third with a 2-0 victory over Sampdoria in a game where both goals came in the final quarter of an hour. Rafael Toloi opened the scoring before substitute Luis Muriel struck with five minutes remaining as Atalanta leapfrogged Inter Milan, who have a game in hand. Roma and Napoli remain in fifth and sixth positions after identical 2-1 victories over Parma and Genoa respectively. Juraj Kucka gave Parma the lead at the Stadio Olimpico but goals from on-loan Arsenal midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Jordan Veretout either side of the break gave Roma all three points.


    Hirving Lozano's 66th-minute effort settled matters in Napoli's favour after Dries Mertens' goal on the stroke of half-time was quickly snuffed out by Edoardo Goldaniga just after the restart. Ernesto Torregrossa gave struggling Brescia the lead at Torino, who hit back to win 3-1 and move clear of the drop zone thanks to an own goal from Ales Mateju and strikes from Andrea Belotti and Simone Zaza. Domenico Berardi and Lukas Haraslin were on target as Sassuolo prevailed 2-1 at Bologna, for whom Musa Barrow's effort in time added-on proved a consolation, while Fioretina and Cagliari shared the spoils in a goalless draw.

  • Birmingham City 1-3 Swansea City - Match report

    Rhian Brewster scores again as Swansea close on play-offs with win at Birmingham

    08 Jul 2020, 22:56 CEST


    Swansea strengthened their Sky Bet Championship play-off claims after piling on more woe for Birmingham City with a 3-1 win at St Andrew’s.


    The South Wales side came from behind after Lukas Jutkiewicz’s fifth-minute opener as on-loan Liverpool forward Rhian Brewster, Ben Cabango and Jay Fulton turned the game on its head.


    A second successive victory for Steve Cooper’s side saw them move within a point and a place of the top six behind fierce rivals Cardiff, while Brewster made it eight goals in 16 games since his arrival from Anfield in January.


    But the result prolonged the frustration for Blues, who are now 10 games without a win in the Championship.


    They have taken just six points out of a possible 30 under departing head coach Pep Clotet and have conceded three times in each of their last five home games.


    It was an all-action start at St. Andrew’s with chances at both ends and two goals in the first 12 minutes.


    Jutkiewicz saw a powerful header palmed away by goalkeeper Freddie Woodman diving to his left.


    But the striker was not to be denied a second time as he stooped to nod home in the fifth minute after team-mates Kristian Pedersen and Jake Clarke-Salter tussled for Dan Crowley’s cross.


    Birmingham captain Jutkiewicz has now matched his season’s career-best tally of 14 goals after his first goal in nine games.


    Brewster was inches away for Swansea with a towering header that bounced just wide from Jake Bidwell’s up-and-under cross.


    But England Under-21s international Brewster made no mistake when he rifled in a falling volley after Connor Roberts nodded back Conor Gallagher’s cross.


    The Blues tried to hit back and Scott Hogan’s shot on the turn was blocked by Cabango and Gary Gardner headed inches over from Jeremie Bela’s corner.


    At the other end Swansea captain Matt Grimes whistled a low left-foot drive narrowly off target on his 100th appearance for the club.


    The visitors took the lead in the 45th minute when Cabango bundled home the first goal of his career to punish poor defending after Clarke-Salter diverted Roberts’ centre into his path.


    Blues brought on Jude Bellingham at half-time for the out-of-sorts Hogan, but their plight was about to get worse.


    Fulton made it 3-1 seven minutes into the period with a mishit shot when Blues left him unmarked 15 yards out from Grimes’ corner.


    The hosts tried to respond but Bela’s first-time effort deflected wide and Jutkiewicz poked straight at Woodman when clean through.


    Brewster wasted the chance to give his team-mates some respite from a late aerial onslaught when he lobbed too close to keeper Lee Camp when clean through.


    But Swansea defended superbly as Blues launched cross after cross in the torrential rain.


  • Wigan Athletic 1-0 Queens Park Rangers - Match Report

    Wigan edge to victory over QPR to boost Championship survival chances

    08 Jul 2020, 22:55 CEST


    Wigan’s hopes of avoiding the drop were boosted as Kieffer Moore’s first-half strike earned the beleaguered Championship outfit a 1-0 win over QPR at a rain-soaked DW Stadium.


    Playing at home for the first time since last week’s announcement that they had entered administration, Latics went ahead in the 33rd minute when Moore rifled a shot past Joe Lumley having been played in by Sam Morsy.


    Moore nearly added a second after the interval, while QPR’s closest attempt was an Ilias Chair shot saved in fine style by David Marshall.


    The result leaves Wigan eight points above the relegation zone with four games left to play.


    But having entered administration, the club face a 12-point penalty – against which they are appealing – that will be applied this season if Paul Cook’s men finish outside the bottom three.


    The threat of relegation remains considerable, but Cook and his players will not be lacking in belief following this seventh win in nine games as they bounced back from Saturday’s 3-0 loss at Brentford.


    Meanwhile, Mark Warburton’s QPR, despite a fourth loss in five, are also eight points above the drop zone.


    Wigan made a lively start, with Jamal Lowe’s strike bringing a stop out of Lumley in the fourth minute.


    Kal Naismith had a shot deflected wide moments later and then slid to get a foot to a Moore cross but was unable to get his effort on target.


    After Moore subsequently just failed to connect with a fine Kieran Dowell pass into the box, Marshall made his first save in the 23rd minute, dealing with a Bright Osayi-Samuel attempt from distance with ease.


    The hosts then grabbed the lead when skipper Morsy drove forward from midfield and fed Moore, who lashed the ball past Lumley.


    While QPR mustered little in response, Wigan exerted more pressure just before the break as Naismith saw a drive from 30 yards out parried by Lumley, who also grabbed a Moore header.


    Moore then came close to doubling the advantage in the 51st minute as he fired narrowly wide, before Marshall made a superb stop around the hour mark to keep out Chair’s strike.


    The counter-attack that followed then saw Lowe carry the ball to the QPR box, where he was denied by a Lumley block.


    Wigan threatened again in the 82nd minute as Danny Fox headed a corner over, then saw out a nervy last few minutes before the final whistle confirmed three points were secure.


  • Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp refusing to think about Premier League points record

    The Reds claimed a 30th league win of the season at Brighton.

    08 Jul 2020, 22:45 CEST

    Jurgen Klopp insists he cannot afford to start thinking about smashing the Premier League points record after Liverpool ground out a battling 3-1 win at Brighton. Mohamed Salah's double and a fine strike from captain Jordan Henderson earned the runaway champions a 30th top-flight victory of a remarkable season. The Reds require a further nine points from fixtures against Burnley, Arsenal, Chelsea and Newcastle to surpass the 100 points Manchester City accrued two seasons ago. Klopp admits his side were far from their fluent best on the south coast and is taking nothing for granted in the pursuit of a record-breaking points haul. "What can I say? When I think about the next four opponents and think we will get 12, 10, or whatever points, I can't do that," said the Reds manager. "How could I assume we could get all these points? When I think about 92 points, I think how could we get 97 last year (finishing second), it's unbelievable. "First and foremost you have to fight for the three points. "That's what we did tonight and I like that a lot because that's the mother and the father of each win that you really work hard for it, and the boys did that again, that's great." Liverpool looked like making light work of lowly Albion after Salah and recalled captain Henderson each netted during a blistering opening eight minutes at the Amex Stadium. But the visitors were made to dig deep after the Seagulls fought back and deservedly halved the deficit through Leandro Trossard just before the break. Reds top scorer Salah eventually made the points safe 14 minutes from time by heading home his 19th league goal of another prolific campaign, while Klopp was left with some cause for concern after Henderson limped off late on.


    The German is unsure how serious his skipper's apparent knee issue is but is braced for bad news. "I don't know, honestly. I didn't see the situation back on the pitch but I know that it will not be nothing, probably," he said. "That's how it is but we have to wait, I cannot say more." Brighton paid a heavy price for their sloppy start and remain without a win against Liverpool in any competition since January 1984. Albion stay nine points clear of the relegation zone, albeit having played a game more than both 18th-placed Aston Villa and second-bottom Bournemouth. Seagulls boss Graham Potter dismissed suggestions his team are already safe and praised his players for their response to the costly early setbacks. "I think the start made things difficult for us but the response from the players was fantastic. I thought we clawed our way back into the game," he said. "We had chances and moments. We pushed and pushed. I'm just really happy with the players how they put their personality in the game and pushed Liverpool as much as we could." Brighton host Manchester City on Saturday ahead of fixtures against Southampton, Newcastle and Burnley. Asked about survival, Potter added: "We know that we have to keep fighting for points. We're not celebrating or safe, we're going to keep fighting. "(We have to) focus on the next match, which is another really difficult game but that's the Premier League."

  • Birmingham and Pep Clotet part ways after Swansea defeat

    Birmingham sit 17th in the table and lost to Swansea on Wednesday night.

    08 Jul 2020, 22:41 CEST

    Pep Clotet has left his position as Birmingham head coach after the club's 3-1 home defeat to Swansea. The 43-year-old was due to step down at the end of the season, but a 10th Championship match without a win brought his departure forward. Birmingham are 17th in the table, four points above the relegation zone with four matches to play. Clotet did not speak to the media after the loss to the Swans and his exit was announced just after 11pm. A Birmingham statement read: "Pep Clotet has this evening left his position as head coach. He was due to step down at the season's end but it was mutually agreed that he should relinquish the role immediately. "The board would like to place on record its sincere thanks to Pep for his efforts during the past two years. "We will be making no further comment at this time." Meanwhile, Swansea manager Steve Cooper has backed Rhian Brewster to remain the man for the big occasion after he started his side's comeback at St Andrew's.


    Brewster scored his eighth goal in 16 games since joining on loan from Liverpool in January. His strike cancelled out Lukas Jutkiewicz's early opener before Ben Cabango and Jay Fulton put Swansea within a point and a place of the play-offs and arch-rivals Cardiff. "That's where you want him – in the box and scoring goals and if he gets a chance in the box, you fancy him," said Cooper about England Under-21s forward Brewster. "It wasn't an easy finish – you might look back on it and say he should score but he kept it down well and took the opportunity. "I was really pleased for him again. I thought he could have got another when he might have gone round the keeper. "But he was full of running and endeavour again and a goal threat. "These younger players have to make the most of their opportunities they're being given and that doesn't just apply to him but all of the young players." Cooper stressed the result was the only thing that matters as Swansea made it back-to-back wins. "Getting the three points was really important at this stage of the season," added Cooper. "It was a difficult start and they really rocked us with that but it was a brilliant reaction from the boys. "I thought we played excellently in the first half in terms of our positioning and possession and looked a real threat, moving them about. "It was just about waiting for that moment to create chances and that's what we did. "I was happy with the performance and the result and we have to get ready for the weekend now."

  • Jose Mourinho hits out at people in power after Eric Dier receives four-game ban

    The defender was also fined.

    08 Jul 2020, 22:14 CEST

    Jose Mourinho has accused people in power of being out of touch with the game after Tottenham defender Eric Dier was handed a four-match ban by the Football Association. The England international also received a GBP 40,000 fine for climbing into the stand to confront an abusive fan after an FA Cup defeat to Norwich in March where Dier's brother became involved. An independent panel ruled that Dier's behaviour was "objectively threatening" and it was not his sole intention to protect his brother. Mourinho said: "My feeling is that in the majority of the cases, football is not protected by the people that are powerful and doesn't belong to this world. "That's simply my feeling. Powerful people – that doesn't belong to the tribe. And they don't have the feelings. "They don't have the know-how, and it's very, very difficult to lead something when you don't have a clue about the world that you are leading." Mourinho also revealed Dier had met the fan. The spectator involved told police in a statement that he was acting like "an idiot" and did not feel threatened and reiterated those feelings to Dier at their meeting, which Mourinho thought would have been enough for a "fair decision".



    Mourinho, who also says the fan would be welcome back at the stadium once gates are open, said: "The fan had the opportunity to meet the player, had the opportunity to apologise to the player, had the opportunity to understand that we are very well paid but we are not robots. "We are very well paid but we have families and friends that support us in the stadiums. So I think it was a good opportunity for that fan to turn his profile and become a different fan. "It was his own decision to do it, because the person in this case, first of all, is a Tottenham fan and was sorry about what happened. "The way I was told he had the dignity to want to apologise to him. It was a nice thing that, in normal circumstances, especially after saying that he never felt under threat at any moment of the situation, would be enough for a fair decision." Mourinho has been defensive of Dier from the off and said he would not agree if the club also decided to punish their player. It has been revealed that any internal action was postponed until the end of the FA's disciplinary process, but the Portuguese's position has not changed. "An internal action is an internal action that I don't think we need to share," he said. "I have no comments about it. "You know, even without me answering direct to the questions, I think you know my position in relation to what happened. I would prefer to say in relation to what didn't happen."

  • Jurgen Klopp pleased with Liverpool resolve in victory at Brighton

    Mohamed Salah and Jordan Henderson struck in the first eight minutes.

    08 Jul 2020, 22:02 CEST

    Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp was pleased with how his side handled Brighton's fightback during the 3-1 victory at the Amex Stadium. Mohamed Salah and Jordan Henderson struck in the first eight minutes before Brighton responded and halved the deficit on the stroke of half-time through Leandro Trossard. But Salah sealed the game 14 minutes from time, heading in from a corner, to secure the Reds their 30th Premier League win of the season. Klopp told Sky Sports: "We don't have any influence on what the other team is doing. We have to react and we had a super solution. I liked how we did it. "They left two offensive players between the lines. When they won the ball, then it was difficult to protect that, and they did create well in most of the situations. "But when you lose the ball at the wrong moment, then they have an advantage and that's why they had the two chances and that's why they scored the goal as well. "I would say they deserved that goal, but we scored then the third one and could have scored again, more really big chances. But all good."


    Salah praised Brighton for fighting back and was glad to have killed the game off with his second goal. He said: "It was a good game for fans to watch. They [Brighton] play really well from the back and they had a good game. "We scored two at the beginning, so it made the game a little bit easier to just have the confidence from the beginning, but they played a good game. "After 2-1, they had more confidence and they tried to play more football. They were really good. "They were close to scoring the second as well, so after I scored the third one, it made the game calm again and we had more confidence that the game was almost over." Salah's brace took him to 19 league goals for the campaign, three behind leading goalscorer Jamie Vardy, but he was coy when asked about his chances of claiming the Golden Boot. "Let's take it game by game," he said with a smile. Brighton boss Graham Potter was pleased with much of what he saw from his players, but admitted there were lessons to be learned. He said: "I think we played well. Over the course of the game, we gave a really good account of ourselves, good personality, especially going 2-0 down in the manner we did. "Liverpool really smelled blood, if you like, because we gifted them a couple of goals, so great personality to drag ourselves back into the game, and then we created some chances before we scored a really good goal. "We put a lot into that game and there are a lot of positives for us, of course things that we need to learn from as well – which is normal – but I'm pleased with a lot that we did. "But again, we have to improve as well, and that includes myself."

  • Alex Neil hails impact of substitutes as Preston reignite play-off hopes

    Preston hit back with three late goals, all from second-half substitutes to turn the game on its head.

    08 Jul 2020, 21:56 CEST

    Preston boss Alex Neil was delighted with the impact of his "aggressive" substitutes after his side fought back to win 3-1 at Sheffield Wednesday. Jacob Murphy fired Wednesday into a second-half lead after cutting from the right and playing a one-two with Atdhe Nuhiu on the edge of the penalty area. But Preston hit back with three late goals, all from second-half substitutes to turn the game on its head. Scott Sinclair equalised with 12 minutes left, Jayden Stockley fired them ahead in the 87th minute and Brad Potts lashed in a third to seal the points in time added on. It was a first victory for North End since the league's resumption and moves them back to within three points of the play-off places with four games to play. "It looked like it was going to be another frustrating night," said Neil, whose side squandered four big first-half chances. "First half we were fantastic, we could have been 4-0, 5-0 up, we had plenty of opportunities. "On another night we could have been 4-0 up at half-time and in the second half we didn't get up to tempo quick enough before their goal changed the game. "We went very aggressive with the changes to try and force the issue and the lads who came on had a really big impact."


    The Owls thought they had regained the lead with the score at 1-1 through Julian Borner's late header, only for the linesman to flag for an infringement on Preston goalkeeper Declan Rudd. Moments later Stockley rifled Preston ahead with a first-time shot from the edge of the area and Potts added a thumping finish in stoppage time. "We probably got that bit of luck, albeit that was a free-kick on Declan for their second (disallowed) goal," Neil added. "But sometimes you don't get those decisions. "But we got that one and that's swung the game in our favour and then the second two finishes were fantastic to finish the game off." Owls boss Garry Monk bemoaned Borner's disallowed goal, but criticised his players for losing their concentration when the game was on a knife-edge. "I didn't see a big interference for it (the disallowed goal)," Monk said. "It was a bitter blow. "It would have put us in a good moment to win. But it's about being able to focus in the big moments. It is game management. We lack concentration in those moments." Monk, whose side slipped to a third straight league defeat, added: "There is a lot of work to do here, but I'm determined to get it right."

  • Dean Smith gearing up Aston Villa for ‘crunch time’ ahead of Man Utd visit

    Smith’s relegation-threatened side have not won in the league since January and have taken just two points from a possible 27 since then.

    08 Jul 2020, 21:30 CEST

    Aston Villa head coach Dean Smith accepts it is "crunch time" for the club with five matches left to save their Premier League status. Villa have taken just two points from five matches since the resumption, leaving them four points from safety. Smith admits he never thought they would be in a relegation battle this season having come up via a Wembley play-off final victory, but remains optimistic they can survive. "It's definitely crunch time. We've only got five games left," he said, ahead of Thursday night's visit of in-form Manchester United. "I think everybody can see that home advantage at the moment has disappeared massively. You don't have your home fans there and dragging us through it at times, so you certainly miss that. "You rely then on team spirit and the camaraderie of the squad. I feel we've shown we've got that but we haven't got a points tally to go with it. "We need scoreboard pressure now. We need to go and get some points."


    Asked whether he ever envisaged being in a relegation battle, he replied: "No, I thought we would have a little bit more, if I'm honest. "I didn't think we would be a top-six team. I knew it would be tough. We've also experienced some big injuries during the season as well that have hampered us. "We lost some of our big players and didn't handle it well enough at the time." Despite the club's slide – they have not won in the league since January and have taken just two points from a possible 27 since then – Smith remains upbeat. "I'm handling it fine," he said. "I've been in this position before at a different level against different quality opposition. "The added pressure I have here is that most of the family are Villa fans so they probably find the pressure tougher than I do. "I think we surprised people with our performance at Liverpool (2-0 loss on Sunday) but ultimately we came away with nothing and I said I don't want to be a valiant loser. "We need points, we need scoreboard pressure. So we'll be going all out to get that win against United. "But we'll certainly need a performance similar to what we had against Liverpool."

  • No Bournemouth complacency about Premier League place, insists Eddie Howe

    The Cherries are four points from safety with five games to play.

    08 Jul 2020, 21:30 CEST

    Eddie Howe does not believe Bournemouth have ever been able to feel like an established Premier League club. The Cherries have spent five seasons in the top flight since earning promotion in 2015 to cap a remarkable journey from League Two. But they now only have five games to save themselves from the drop, sitting four points adrift of safety going into Thursday's clash with Jose Mourinho's Tottenham. They finished as high as ninth in 2017, 12th in 2018 and were comfortably clear of the drop last season as well in 14th place. But Howe rejected suggestions that had ever led to any sense of complacency within the club about their position in the top flight. "To say we are an established Premier League club – I don't think we could ever say that," Howe said. "And that's no disrespect to us as a club but with everything that we have to fight against, in the sense of the size of the club, and the facilities. You could go through the whole club, and to say that we are an established Premier League club in any department I'd say would be wrong. "We had to consistently fight against the odds to stay here. So I don't think from my side, and I think that's the most important thing, because I would dictate the mentality of the players. Other people, I'm not in control of what they think. "Every year we are in the Premier League is so, so special. For me it is an amazing achievement to do that. "And then my hope was that we could build the club from the inside out, because you don't go from being a League Two club to a Premier League club in the time that we did and not have areas of the club that we need to develop." Bournemouth are without a win since February and in the middle of a daunting run of fixtures with Leicester and Manchester City up next after Spurs. Howe was encouraged by some of the play shown by his side last time out at Old Trafford despite the match ending in a 5-2 defeat. Now he is looking for a further boost from the return from suspension of top scorer Callum Wilson, who Howe believes can be a key player during the run-in. "When I look at Callum I've always said I see a very positive individual," he said. "Every day when he comes in I can hear his laughter through the walls of the training ground. You need people like that at this moment. "He will feel the pain of defeats, he will feel everything the team feels. But in some senses you need those characters like Callum to drag everybody up again for the next game, which is the most important. "We can't change what's gone on behind us, we can only affect what's in front of us. "That's why Callum is such a key member of the team from a psychological perspective."

  • Ole Gunnar Solskjaer sets realistic transfer targets in bid to launch title tilt

    Executive vice-chairman Woodward has warned it might not be “business as usual” in the transfer market.

    08 Jul 2020, 21:30 CEST

    Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says he is pitching realistic and sensible transfer targets to Ed Woodward as the Manchester United boss looks to build a title-challenging side – one he hopes Paul Pogba will commit his long-term future to. FA Cup, Europa League and Champions League qualification remain within United's grasp, but their intention to build towards a Premier League title tilt could be hampered by the impact of Covid-19. Executive vice-chairman Woodward has warned it might not be "business as usual" in the transfer market and said "speculation around transfers of individual players for hundreds of millions of pounds this summer seems to ignore the realities that face the sport". United continue to be linked with countless signings, but the surprisingly low fee that saw Leroy Sane switch Manchester City for Bayern Munich last week suggested a move away from the inflated transfer values seen in recent years. "There's got to be realism," Solskjaer said. "I think the whole world has changed, both financially and the perception that we've got on values. "So every time I put the case in front of Ed, I think it's a sensible one and it's a realistic one. "I think I've proven to the club that I've always got the club in the front of my mind and the best for the club. I don't think short term or personally this would fit me for a short space of time. "I'll always think long term and try to be making good deals. I'm always quite careful with money, my own personal money as well."


    Striking a good deal could be tough given the uncertain backdrop, but speculation continues over, among others, a summer move for Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish. The 24-year-old faces United on Thursday and will be looking to repeat his standout display in December's 2-2 draw at Old Trafford to kickstart struggling Villa's hopes of beating the drop. Solskjaer knows his players have to be "aware" of the threat posed by Grealish, who it was suggested has the chance to audition for a move to United. "Everyone's said that we've got easy games in the run in because of this, that or the other," Solskjaer said. "We know it's not the case. "Every time any player plays against Man United it's a challenge, first of all because Man United is a bigger team but also the whole world is watching. "It's not just playing in front of Man United supporters or manager or team, it's for himself. You want to prove to your family and yourself that you're a good player, so I can't answer any different than that." The PA news agency understands United have looked at the impressive attacking midfielder as a potential signing but their priorities may well lie elsewhere given the way their attacking unit has flourished. Solskjaer was coy on United's priorities at a press conference in which a potential contract extension for Pogba was broached following fellow midfielders Scott McTominay and Nemanja Matic signing new deals.


    The 27-year-old expressed his openness to an exit last summer, but the market has changed due to the coronavirus pandemic and the midfielder appears to be enjoying his football towards the end of an injury-hit season. Pogba's contract expires next summer – although it is unthinkable that the club will not invoke their one-year extension clause – and Solskjaer would like him to sign extended terms. Asked if plans are in place to try and get Pogba to sign a new deal, Solskjaer said: "Well, I can't comment on discussions between players and the club. "But of course we want to keep the best players around the club. We want to build a squad for the future. "Scott and Nemanja, they're in a similar position but at different stages in their careers. One at the start, one really experienced. We also need players in that mid-range group, so hopefully we can do something. "I know that since Paul's come back now he's looking better and better. He's just enjoying his football and let's see where it takes us."

  • Eric Dier met with fan who he confronted in the stands, says Jose Mourinho

    The Tottenham defender will serve a four-match ban for his actions in March’s FA Cup tie.

    08 Jul 2020, 21:30 CEST

    Jose Mourinho has revealed Eric Dier has met the Tottenham fan whose abuse led him to climb into the stands and confront him. The central defender has received a four-match suspension and GBP 40,000 fine for his actions after an FA Cup defeat to Norwich in March where Dier's brother became involved. An independent panel ruled that Dier's behaviour was "objectively threatening" and it was not his sole intention to protect his brother. The spectator involved told police in a statement that he was acting like "an idiot" and did not feel threatened and reiterated those feelings to Dier at their meeting, which Mourinho thought would have been enough for a "fair decision". Mourinho, who also says the fan would be welcome back at the stadium once gates are open, said: "The fan had the opportunity to meet the player, had the opportunity to apologise to the player, had the opportunity to understand that we are very well paid but we are not robots. "We are very well paid but we have families and friends that support us in the stadiums. So I think it was a good opportunity for that fan to turn his profile and become a different fan. "It was Dier's own decision to do it, because the person in this case, first of all, is a Tottenham fan and was sorry about what happened. "The way I was told he had the dignity to want to apologise to him. It was a nice thing that, in normal circumstances, especially after saying that he never felt under threat at any moment of the situation, would be enough for a fair decision."



    Mourinho was reluctant to discuss his true feelings on Dier's sanction for fear of receiving his own punishment. But he did say that the people in power are not in touch with the game. "My feeling is that in the majority of the cases, football is not protected by the people that are powerful and doesn't belong to this world," he said. "That's simply my feeling. Powerful people – that doesn't belong to the tribe. And they don't have the feelings. "They don't have the know-how, and it's very, very difficult to lead something when you don't have a clue about the world that you are leading." Mourinho has been defensive of Dier from the off and said he would not agree if the club also decided to punish their player. It has been revealed that any internal action was postponed until the end of the Football Association's disciplinary process, but the Portuguese's position has not changed. "An internal action is an internal action that I don't think we need to share," he said. "I have no comments about it. "You know, even without me answering direct to the questions, I think you know my position in relation to what happened. I would prefer to say in relation to what didn't happen."

  • Liverpool remain on course for Premier League record after Mohamed Salah brace

    The Egypt forward scored twice in a battling win at Brighton.

    08 Jul 2020, 21:28 CEST

    Mohamed Salah scored twice as Liverpool boosted their hopes of breaking the Premier League points record by battling to a 3-1 success against Brighton. Jurgen Klopp's runaway champions looked like making light work of lowly Albion after Salah and recalled captain Jordan Henderson each netted during a blistering opening eight minutes at the Amex Stadium. But the visitors were made to dig deep for their 30th league victory of an unforgettable season after the Seagulls fought back and deservedly halved the deficit through Leandro Trossard just before the break. Reds top scorer Salah made the points safe 14 minutes from time by heading home his 19th league goal of another prolific campaign, while Klopp was left with some cause for concern after Henderson limped off late on. Record-chasing Liverpool now require a further nine points from fixtures against Burnley, Arsenal, Chelsea and Newcastle to surpass the 100 points Manchester City accrued two seasons ago. Albion may well feel aggrieved to finish empty handed but paid a heavy price for their sloppy start and remain without a win against Liverpool in any competition since January 1984.


    The Seagulls stay nine points clear of relegation zone, albeit having played a game more than both 18th-placed Aston Villa and second-bottom Bournemouth. Liverpool boss Klopp made four changes following Sunday's lacklustre win over Aston Villa, including handing a first league start to 19-year-old defender Neco Williams. The Reds arrived on the south coast having gone five away games in all competitions without scoring. After being afforded a guard of honour from their opponents for the third successive game, the visitors quickly halted that run during a flying start. Salah claimed the sixth-minute opener, emphatically dispatching the ball into the bottom left corner after the dawdling Davy Propper was dispossessed on the edge of his own box by Naby Keita. Albion's attempts to play out from defence were admirable but they were again caught out less than three minutes later. Seagulls defender Adam Webster was at fault on this occasion, overrunning the ball in midfield before the ball fell for Henderson to stylishly curl home from 20 yards. Brighton could have been forgiven for fearing the worst but they regrouped and gradually grew into the game, with Trossard the primary threat.


    The lively Belgian winger was twice denied by last-ditch blocks, while his marauding run down the left flank led to Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson Becker being forced to deny Neal Maupay. Graham Potter's men gave themselves hope of mounting a fightback by pulling one back moments before half-time. Seagulls defender Tariq Lamptey took advantage of Williams being out of position to deliver a low cross from the right and Trossard, who claimed the winner at Norwich on Saturday, thumped home on the half volley. Williams endured a mixed full debut and, having been booked, was substituted at half-time, with Andy Robertson coming on. Brighton had gone into the game almost assured of a fourth successive season in the top-flight having taken an impressive seven points from 12 since the restart. They wasted a golden chance to equalise on the hour mark when unmarked defender Dan Burn scuffed an effort towards goal and saw it hacked away by Georginio Wijnaldum following a partially-cleared corner. Liverpool were in desperate need of a third to quash the hosts' hopes and it duly arrived in the 76th minute. Substitute Robertson delivered an inviting inswinging corner from the right and Salah found space at the near post to glance home. Henderson then limped off with an apparent injury 10 minutes from time, with James Milner coming on for his 536th Premier League outing to climb to fifth in the competition's all-time appearance rankings. Salah wasted two fine late opportunities to clinch a hat-trick but the misses mattered little as Liverpool marched on in their pursuit of a record points haul.

  • Normal service resumes as Michael Van Gerwen wins first PDC Summer Series event

    The world number one beat Peter Wright in the final.

    08 Jul 2020, 21:25 CEST

    Michael Van Gerwen made a triumphant return to the oche, overcoming world champion Peter Wright in a nail-biting final to win the first of five PDC Summer Series events that will be held over successive days in Milton Keynes. Having held a successful Home Tour during the coronavirus lockdown, the PDC has gathered 128 players for five behind closed doors events this week to mark its official return amid the pandemic. Van Gerwen claimed bragging rights on day one, the Dutchman avenging his defeat in the World Championship final at Alexandra Palace earlier this year with an 8-7 victory over Wright, who was notably dressed down for the occasion. Gone was the Scotsman's trademark multi-coloured Mohican hairstyle while he also wore glasses, but the change seemed to pay off as he averaged 108 and 105 to see off Glen Durrant and Krzysztof Ratajski to reach the final.


    Van Gerwen's route to the showpiece saw him topple Ciaran Teehan, William Borland, Callan Rydz, Jamie Hughes and Danny Noppert before averaging 107 in his semi-final defeat of Gabriel Clemens. Van Gerwen stole a march on Wright in the final which pitted the top two players in the world against each other, breezing into a 5-2 lead in the first to eight battle. But Van Gerwen watched on helplessly as Wright won five legs on the spin to move to the brink of victory, only for the world number one to roar back and pip his rival in the final leg to end a riveting, topsy-turvy contest. "I'm very happy," Van Gerwen said on the PDC's official website. "It was a tough day and I had to perform really well but I worked hard and I did enough. "For the first tournament after this big gap, I think it wasn't too bad. I'm really glad to be back. I played some good darts but you never know what can happen – there's no easy games any more. "It doesn't matter who you draw now, you have to be sharp otherwise they will beat you. It's been my biggest gap ever, four months is a long time to be away but I'm happy that I showed everyone that I'm back."

  • English football disrespected over Wigan crisis – EFL chairman Rick Parry

    The Sky Bet Championship club is facing a 12-point penalty.

    08 Jul 2020, 21:17 CEST

    EFL chairman Rick Parry has vowed to get to the bottom of the crisis at Wigan after claiming English football has been treated with "disrespect". The Sky Bet Championship club was placed into administration by new owners Next Leader Fund, headed by Au Yeung Wai Kay, just a month after they took over. The Latics have appealed against a 12-point penalty which could see them relegated at the end of the season. Parry confirmed that the Hong Kong-based group, which claims to have invested in excess of GBP 40million in the club, passed the EFL's owners' and directors' test, but was shocked by the decision to call in the administrators. He told BBC Sport: "It was a tremendous shock – a bolt from the blue. Normally if a club is facing administration, you get warning signs. Generally they don't pay HMRC, they don't pay the players, there are problems with creditors and it happens gradually. "It is really unprecedented for an owner to put his own club into administration, literally overnight. It is completely unprecedented for an owner who has only just acquired the club for GBP 40m to put his prized asset straight into administration and therefore destroy its value to him. "It makes absolutely no sense to us – it's a real mystery. I've never seen anything quite like it."


    Parry, who played down rumours that the club may have been at the centre of a betting scam, admitted the EFL's powers to call the owners to account may be limited but promised to do all he can to investigate the matter. He said: "We want to and we are determined to. How confident can you be when it is thousands of miles away with limited jurisdiction? It will be challenging. "We want to try to get to the bottom of this because, on the face of it, the Wigan staff, the fans, the players, the town… English football has been treated with disrespect in this." Parry also condemned owners who are placing their own clubs in financial difficulties by gambling on reaching the Premier League and the riches on offer. He said: "The Championship is a financial nonsense. We've got clubs spending 107 per cent of their income on wages, we've got the major distortion of parachute payments, we've got GBP 400million of owner-funding required, GBP 16million per Championship club. "There are owners gambling on getting into the Premier League. It's unsustainable."

  • Steve Cooper delighted Rhian Brewster is making the most of his Swansea chance

    The loanee forward scored again.

    08 Jul 2020, 21:09 CEST

    Swansea manager Steve Cooper backed Rhian Brewster to remain the man for the big occasion after he started the comeback that saw his side beat Birmingham 3-1 at St Andrew's. On-loan Liverpool forward Brewster scored his eighth goal in 16 games since joining on loan from Liverpool in January. His strike cancelled out Lukas Jutkiewicz's early opener before Ben Cabango and Jay Fulton put Swansea within a point and a place of the Sky Bet Championship play-offs and arch rivals Cardiff. "That's where you want him – in the box and scoring goals and if he gets a chance in the box, you fancy him," said Cooper about England Under-21s forward Brewster. "It wasn't an easy finish – you might look back on it and say he should score but he kept it down well and took the opportunity. "I was really pleased for him again. I thought he could have got another when he might have gone round the keeper. "But he was full of running and endeavour again and a goal threat. "These younger players have to make the most of their opportunities they're being given and that doesn't just apply to him but all of the young players."


    Cooper stressed the result was the only thing that matters Swansea made it back-to-back wins. "Getting the three points was really important at this stage of the season," added Cooper. "It was a difficult start and they really rocked us with that but it was a brilliant reaction from the boys. "I thought we played excellently in the first half in terms of our positioning and possession and looked a real threat, moving them about. "It was just about waiting for that moment to create chances and that's what we did. "I was happy with the performance and the result and we have to get ready for the weekend now." The defeat saw Birmingham's winless run in the Championship extend to 10 matches and they have conceded three times in each of their last five home games. Manager Pep Clotet, who is leaving the club at the end of the season, did not speak to the media at the end of the game.

  • West Bromwich Albion 2-0 Derby County - Match Report

    West Brom edge closer to Premier League return with victory over Derby

    08 Jul 2020, 21:09 CEST


    West Brom turned up the title pressure on Leeds as they returned to the top of the Sky Bet Championship and moved a step closer to a Premier League return.


    Grady Diangana and Dara O’Shea struck to down Derby 2-0 with Slaven Bilic’s side now two points clear at the top, having played a game more, and five points ahead of third-placed Brentford.


    Derby’s play-off hopes were hit as they dropped to eighth and Louie Sibley was sent off in injury time.


    Leeds host Stoke on Thursday knowing victory will reclaim the lead but Bilic should be satisfied with a professional job done with just four games left.


    It had been a bright start from both sides with O’Shea blocking from Duane Holmes and Kamil Grosicki shooting over.


    But it was Albion who struck first to underline their promotion credentials in the 11th minute.


    Grosicki’s cute through ball found Diangana and the West Ham loanee beat the offside trap to round Ben Hamer and roll in from a tight angle.


    Albion’s Matheus Pereira dragged wide soon after and Graeme Shinnie shot over as the Rams tried to find a foothold.


    Yet the Baggies had raised their game and comfortably kept the visitors at bay.


    With Pereira and Diangana they also had the game’s most influential players with the pair, at times, toying with Derby in the first half.


    George Evans blocked a low Pereira effort after the forward danced into the area eight minutes before the break.


    The Baggies continued to press, only for Grosicki to shoot wastefully over, and Hamer was forced into a smart low save when he turned Charlie Austin’s volley wide in first-half stoppage time.


    Wayne Rooney’s impact had been minimal but Pereira was growing in stature and Hamer saved his low drive four minutes after the restart.


    Diangana hobbled off soon after, being replaced by Callum Robinson, but the robust Baggies, who have lost just six league games, did not break stride.


    Although Sibley slashed wide Derby remained limited and, after Hamer denied Pereira, Albion doubled their lead 14 minutes from time.


    The Rams conceded a cheap corner and O’Shea lost his marker to head in Pereira’s near-post delivery.


    Derby’s misery was then compounded in stoppage time when Sibley saw red for an innocuous kick on O’Shea.


  • We had to win for staff who have been made unemployed, says Wigan boss Paul Cook

    The club have entered administration.

    08 Jul 2020, 21:07 CEST

    Wigan boss Paul Cook dedicated Wednesday's win over QPR to the staff who had been made redundant following last week's announcement that the club had entered administration. On Tuesday, it emerged that 75 redundancies had been made among Latics football support staff and general support staff. After Kieffer Moore's 33rd-minute strike secured a 1-0 victory against QPR, Cook said: "It's been a real week, and tonight we had to win. "We were flat on Saturday (a 3-0 defeat at Brentford) – we are not as flat as the people who have been made unemployed. "We had to win for them tonight, for Wigan Athletic and the town, and we did that." Cook, who had spoken to some of those concerned earlier that day, added: "For whatever I feel, for how much sleep I don't get, for the worst, toughest week of my football career by far, to see what goes on to other people makes my job even worse."


    The result boosted the beleaguered Championship outfit's hopes of avoiding the drop. Wigan are now eight points clear of the relegation zone with four games left to play – but having entered administration they face a 12-point penalty, against which they are appealing, that will be applied this season if they finish outside the bottom three. Cook said: "People have written us off, the 12 points. (But) we're still fighting. "We're not going to get ahead of ourselves. We are not stupid, we have a real big mountain to climb. "We are in administration, it's a 12-point deduction. I just hope the EFL hand punishments out for other clubs that have been breaking the rules. "At the minute we're accepting it, if that's going to be the case. But we've still got plenty of fight in us. "We need a new owner, we need to re-employ people that have been made unemployed, and we need to make this town come together with happiness not sadness. "None of us know the future but one thing I do know, this club must be here for a long, long time." Cook added: "Football was in a bad place last year when we allowed Bury to go out of business, yet there's multi-millions of pounds and players on fortunes. It's not right and football must look at helping other clubs now. "I'm not on about Wigan Athletic in administration, I'm on about football. Football in our country is everything to communities and supporters and we can't let clubs go out of business."


    QPR, for whom it was a fourth defeat in five games, are also eight points above the relegation places. Their best chance came around the hour mark when Ilias Chair saw his shot well saved by David Marshall. QPR boss Mark Warburton said: "They probably wanted it more than us in the first half. They've had some shocking news, appalling news and we knew they'd be united and together and angry, and they were. "But then the second half we came out much better and controlled the first 15 minutes, and then we have to score. We can't miss from four yards out, basically into the middle of the goal, we can't miss those chances."

  • FA to investigate after Adebayo Akinfenwa claims he was abused in play-off tie

    The Wycombe striker alleges he was called “fat water buffalo” by a Fleetwood representative.

    08 Jul 2020, 21:06 CEST

    The Football Association is set to investigate after Wycombe striker Adebayo Akinfenwa alleged he was called a "fat water buffalo" on several occasions by a Fleetwood representative on Monday night. Wycombe progressed to the League One play-off final after a 6-3 aggregate victory over Fleetwood but the occasion was spoiled for Akinfenwa after learning of a remark he says left him feeling angry, frustrated and dehumanised. Akinfenwa said in a statement published on Twitter: "Monday night was one of the highlights of my career with Wycombe so far as we secured our place in the League One play-off final at Wembley. However, what should have been an evening of joy and excitement quickly turned into one of anger and frustration. "Following the conclusion of the game, I learned that a representative of the opposition had repeatedly referred to me as a Fat 'Water Buffalo' in a derogatory tone. "I believe it dehumanises me as a black man by associating me to a Water Buffalo, a dark animal, in a derogatory manner." Wycombe said on Twitter that they "fully stand by (their) players and supports all campaigns to end discrimination" but would make no further comment on the matter. The PA news agency has contacted Fleetwood for a response on Akinfenwa's claim. An FA spokesperson said: "We've been made aware of the allegation and we'll be investigating it further."


    Akinfenwa, 38, has been with the Chairboys for the last four years, and counts Swansea, Northampton and AFC Wimbledon as his former clubs. Amid the Black Lives Matter movement, he added his voice to calls for more to be done to tackle racism. His statement added: "Regardless of whether or not there was deliberate racial intent by using that that language and irrespective of the context in which it was used, if we are to make real and long standing change then we must strive to educate each other about these issues. "We must work together to ensure those who have not and do not face racial prejudice understand that what may appear to them to be a throwaway remark can have such a big and hurtful impact. "I feel passionately around raising this because we as a sport and as a society must wake up. We must do more. We must educate ourselves and understand the potential repercussions of using such language and be aware of the hurt it can cause. "The bigger issue to me would be the lack of understanding as to why calling me this term would not be hurtful to me as a black man, and this must change. "Taking a knee, supporting social media campaigns and wearing a logo on our kits is a start, but it is not enough. It will not result in real and long standing change. "The real work must start now and the only way to move forward collectively is through education."

  • Preston leave it late to revive their play-off hopes

    North End are three points off the top six.

    08 Jul 2020, 20:58 CEST

    Preston rekindled their Sky Bet Championship play-off hopes with three late goals at Hillsborough to sink Sheffield Wednesday 3-1. Wednesday broke the deadlock early in the second half through Jacob Murphy's fine effort, but Preston hit back to turn the game on its head with goals from substitutes Scott Sinclair, Jayden Stockley and Brad Potts. The victory halted a seven-game winless run for Alex Neil's side, who have climbed up to eighth place, three points adrift of the top six. Wednesday slipped to a third straight league defeat, but the scoreline was harsh on Garry Monk's side, who hit the crossbar through Dominic Iorfa in the first half. Neil made his intentions clear, switching to just three at the back in a bold bid to end his side's poor run and it helped make for a lively opening. Patrick Bauer's downward header was held by Wednesday goalkeeper Joe Wildsmith and at the other end Iorfa headed Barry Bannan's corner against the crossbar. The visitors squandered more big chances when the unmarked Andrew Hughes headed Joe Rafferty's free-kick off target and Sean Maguire somehow failed to connect with skipper Alan Browne's cross. Tom Barkhuizen was next to make a hash of a clear scoring chance for Preston as he shot wide after sprinting through on goal at the end of a swift counter.


    The Owls had spells of concerted pressure as half-time approached and striker Alessio Da Cruz was thwarted by Jordan Storey's excellent block after Bannan's clever ball over the top. Wednesday continued to dominate possession at the start of the second half and broke the deadlock with a moment of genuine quality in the 58th minute. Murphy cut in from the right and after evading several challenges, played a one-two on the edge of the area with Atdhe Nuhiu before steering the return pass beneath Preston goalkeeper Declan Rudd. Wednesday's goalscorer limped off injured soon after and was replaced by Moses Odubajo. Neil responded by sending on Daniel Johnson and Potts for Ben Pearson and Ryan Ledson and soon after Sinclair and Stockley replaced Hughes and Maguire. That proved inspirational from the Preston boss. Two minutes later Sinclair showed real composure to find the target after Stockley's flick-on. In a dramatic finish, Wednesday defender Julian Borner thought he had headed his side back in front in the 86th minute, but the linesman flagged for offside and a minute later Preston forged ahead. Stockley fired home an excellent low finish into the bottom corner from outside the penalty area. Wednesday went close to a late leveller when midfielder Joey Pelupessy headed inches wide, but Potts settled it for Preston with a thumping finish in time added on.