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2013 » April » 12 - Archive

Premier League: Stoke - Manchester United
premier league
Manchester United are in pole position to reclaim their Premier League crown but a second successive loss would send jitters through the camp.
United head to Stoke on Sunday, having had their lead on top of the table reduced after falling to a 2-1 defeat against Manchester rivals and defending champions City on Monday.

Sir Alex Ferguson's men are 12 points clear at the summit with seven games to go, and remain in the box seat to capture a record 20th title.

But having already bowed out of the Champions League and FA Cup in the past month, United midfielder Antonio Valencia says the club is determined to secure the title as soon as possible.
Category: News Views: 605 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 22:17

Premier League : Newcastle United - Sunderland
premier league
The 144th Tyne-Wear derby between rivals Newcastle and Sunderland on Sunday has a lot more riding on it than just local bragging rights.
Newcastle (36 points) find themselves only five points clear of the relegation zone in 13th position while Sunderland are clinging to safety by the skin of their teeth.

The 17th-placed Stadium of Light outfit (31 points) only have their heads above water because their goal difference (-11) is superior to Wigan (-20) who currently occupy the first relegation spot.

While Sunderland's chances of heading to the Championship next season are greater than Newcastle's, the latter would want to be careful and make every post a winner - beginning ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 521 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 22:15

Rui Costa: Benfica a force once more
rui costa
Benfica football director Rui Costa says the club is a rising force in Europe once again.
The Portuguese club knocked out Newcastle in the quarter-finals of the Europea League 4-2 on aggregate and have been drawn against 18-time Turkish league winners Fenerbahce in the semi-finals.

It is the second time in three years Benfica have reached the semi-finals of the tournament, after they were knocked out by fellow Portuguese outfit Braga in the 2010/11 edition.

Former Fiorentina and Milan midfielder Rui Costa knows it will not be an easy task against the Turkish club but remains confident ahead of ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 535 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 22:13

Pandev tips Mourinho for European glory
Napoli striker Goran Pandev is backing Jose Mourinho to lead Real Madrid to glory in this season's Champions League.
The Macedonia international was part of the Inter Milan side that recorded a historic treble under Mourinho in 2009/10 and he still has the utmost respect for the Portuguese coach.

While Pandev acknowledges that Madrid face stiff competition for this season's Champions League crown from Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund, he still expects Mourinho to land the title.

"He is an extraordinary coach. The best of all," the forward told Il Mattino.
Category: News Views: 626 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 22:09

Barca to play Bayern, Real meet Dortmund
champions league
Bayern Munich will face Barcelona in the semi-finals of the Champions League, while Real Madrid have been paired with Borussia Dortmund.
Bayern, who defeated Juventus 4-0 on aggregate in the quarter-finals, have claimed the continent's top prize on five previous occasions and are desperate to atone for defeat in last year's tournament decider at home to Chelsea.

Barcelona, semi-finalists for the sixth year in succession, are seeking their third Champions League title in five seasons, having gotten past Paris Saint-Germain 3-3 on aggregate, progressing courtesy of the away goals rule.

Barca's fierce rivals Madrid are bidding for a 10th European Cup, while their coach Jos ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 521 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 22:07

Ferguson disputes Hodgson comments
Sir Alex Ferguson has hit out at Roy Hodgson's suggestion that every international break 'should be taken seriously'.
England boss Hodgson claimed on Thursday that players and managers saw the FIFA fixture list as a 10-day rest period, and said that Premier League coaches have 'no excuse' for sending their star men to Dubai.

"I'd still like to see it as a time when players go to play for their international teams," Hodgson told reporters at the Soccerex conference. 

"These breaks are being seen as the 10-day break that players don't always get during the season.
Category: News Views: 490 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 22:05

Butragueno braced for Dortmund challenge
Emilio Butragueno says Real Madrid will have their work cut out to reach the Champions League final at the expense of Borussia Dortmund.
The two sides were drawn together in the group stages and it was Juergen Klopp's men who took top spot, thanks to a 2-1 victory over Real at Signal Iduna Park and a 2-2 draw at the Santiago Bernabeu a fortnight later.

Having been pitted against one another in the semi-final draw on Friday, Madrid director Butragueno is well aware of just how big a task the Liga club face getting past Dortmund.

"It is an honour for us to play the semi-finals of this great comp ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 507 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 22:03

Uruguayan FA to back Suarez
The Uruguayan Football Association (AUF) say they will defend Luis Suarez after claims he punched an opponent during a World Cup qualifier.
The incident occurred during Chile's 2-0 victory over Suarez's Uruguay in March, when the 26-year-old allegedly threw a punch in the direction of West Brom defender Gonzalo Jara, who is on loan at Nottingham Forest.

Referee Nestor Patana missed the altercation in the penalty area and was therefore unable to react during the match, and though retrospective action is likely to be taken, the AUF are adamant they will stand by their star man.

"Once again we feel S ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 443 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 22:01

Wenger wants Arsenal to start fast
Arsene Wenger says scoring early in games will be important if Arsenal are to qualify for the Champions League this season.
The Gunners are hoping to secure a top-four finish as they head into the latter stages of their Premier League campaign, with Norwich next on the fixture list at the Emirates Stadium.

Wenger said it is important they continue their good recent form by starting well against the visitors this weekend, as it forces teams who set up to defend to change their tactics and style of play.

"Once we are in front the teams who usually defend against us have to come out and that gives us ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 446 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 21:59

Premier League: Aston Villa - Fulham
premier league
Relegation-threatened Aston Villa will hope to make it two vital wins in succession when they host Fulham in the English Premier League.
Villa defeated Stoke City 3-1 away from home on Saturday, dragging their beaten hosts into the scrap for survival at the wrong end of the table.

Three points gained at the Britannia Stadium lifted Villa up to 16th in the standings, two points clear of the drop zone.

And with little separating the teams in the bottom half of the Premier League, they are just six points away from 10th-placed Fulham.

Paul Lambert's Villa team are enjoying some of their best form this seaso ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 785 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 05:06

Premier League : Everton - QPR
premier league
Realistically, Queens Park Rangers must beat Everton at Goodison Park on Saturday if they hope to avoid relegation from the Premier League.
Harry Redknapp's side have spent the season near the foot of the table and are in 19th position, a worrying seven points from safety with just six games left to be played.

Their recent form has been up and down, with crucial lapses badly affecting their results, such as the first-half performance in a 3-2 loss to Fulham and conceding a late equaliser against Wigan after battling hard to retain their lead despite being reduced to 10 men.

Everton by contrast have won three of their past four league games, with an outstanding 2-0 victory ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 675 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 05:05

Premier League : Southampton - West Ham
premier leagueThree points for Southampton or West Ham United will all but guarantee their Premier League survival when they clash on Saturday.
After a 2-0 away win against Reading in their last fixture, Southampton have now won their last three games, including home wins against Chelsea and Liverpool, and are in 11th position on 37 points.

Coming off some solid results against Liverpool (0-0) and West Bromwich (3-1), West Ham are placed 12th in standings, behind their south-coast opponents only on goal difference but with a game in hand.

It would take a poor run for either of these sides to be relegated but three points in this clash at St Mary's Stadium would ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 651 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 05:03

Premier League: Reading - Liverpool
premier league
Reading manager Nigel Adkins says he will not compromise on his style of football despite facing relegation to the Championship.
Adkins was appointed Reading manager on March 26 and has overseen two defeats so far but remains committed to playing attacking, possession-based football as he prepares his team for the visit of Liverpool on Saturday.

Despite admitting Reading face an 'uphill task' to stay in the English Premier League, the former Southampton manager has urged his players to 'get the supporters off their feet' rather than just defend over the last six games of the campaign.

"I want the players to work hard, I want the players to get the supporters off their fee ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 617 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 05:00

Premier League: Arsenal - Norwich
premier league
Inconsistent winger Gervinho could be the key for Arsenal when they host Norwich in the English Premier League with third spot on the line.
Gervinho has been a popular target for disgruntled Arsenal fans this season as the London-based side have failed yet again to challenge for the Premier League title but with two goals and three assists in Arsenal's past three fixtures, the 25-year-old Ivory Coast international has found top form.

Arsenal can boost their UEFA Champions League qualification hopes and move from fifth into third spot in the English Premier League with a win over Norwich at the Emirates on Saturday and Gervinho could well be critical to the home side's chances.

Category: News Views: 598 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 04:59

Pardew proud of European adventure
Alan Pardew insists he is proud of his players despite Newcastle bowing out of the Europa League against Benfica on Thursday.
Trailing 3-1 from the first leg Newcastle knew they would need to mount a stirring comeback in order to make the last four of the competition, and were roared on by a passionate St James' Park crowd.

Papiss Cisse gave the hosts hope when he nodded home on 71 minutes after twice being denied by the assistant referee's flag, but Eduardo Salvio killed off the tie with a clinical finish in injury time.

The 4-2 aggregate defeat ends the European adventure which has proved a welcome distraction from a disappointing Premier League campaign, but Pardew is adamant his men could do no more.
Category: News Views: 565 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 04:56

Europa League: Newcastle United 1:1 Benfica (agg. 2-4)
Newcastle United were knocked out of the Europe League on Thursday despite battling to a 1-1 draw with Benfica at St James' Park.
Following last week's 3-1 defeat in the first leg in Lisbon, Newcastle were given a glimmer of hope when Papiss Cisse's second-half header with 20 minutes remaining reduced the overall deficit. 

But Alan Pardew's side left themselves with too much to do as Eduardo Salvio's 90th-minute strike sealed Benfica's progress into the last four.

Newcastle had goalkeeper Tim Krul to thank for keeping them in the tie early on as Andre Almeida's powerful cross from the right was flicked on by Lima, only for Krul to make an instinctive save with his foot.

... Read more »
Category: News Views: 590 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 04:54

Europa League: Lazio 1:1 Fenerbahce (agg. 1-3)
Lazio crashed out of the Europa League at the quarter-final stage after a 1-1 draw with Fenerbahce at the Stadio Olimpico on Thursday.
Senad Lulic put the hosts 1-0 up on the hour mark after heading past Volkan Demirel, but Caner Erkin levelled up the encounter with 15 minutes remaining to put his side 3-1 up on aggregate as Fenerbahce secured their place in the last four.

The first clear-cut opportunity of the game fell to Antonio Candreva following some sloppy defensive play by Cristian as the Lazio winger fired a tame effort goalbound that was easily held by Volkan Demirel.

The hosts pressed on goal early as Hernanes saw his long distance effort inadvertently blocked by Libor Kozak before the Brazilian midfielder looked to ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 541 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 04:52

UEFA Europa League: Basel 2:2 Tottenham (agg. 4-4, 4-1 on pens)
Tottenham crashed out of the Europa League quarter-finals on penalties following a 2-2 second-leg draw against Swiss outfit Basel.
The match had finished level in normal time, with Clint Dempsey's early strike putting Spurs in control of the tie, but they were quickly pegged back thanks to Mohamed Salah's near-post finish.

Basel capitalised on slack defending just after the interval to take control as Aleksandar Dragovic rifled home from close-range after Brad Friedel had parried a Fabian Schar header.

Plucky Tottenham were not to be denied, as Dempsey netted his second following a searching pass from substitute Tom Huddlestone, before Jan Vertonghen's red card prior to the final whistle left the visitors with an uphill task ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 455 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 04:51

Europa League: Rubin Kazan 3:2 Chelsea (agg 4-5)
Chelsea advanced to the last four of the Europa League despite a 3-2 defeat in the second leg of their quarter-final against Rubin Kazan.
Fernando Torres' goal inside five minutes got the Blues off to the perfect start leaving the hosts with a mountain to climb.

Ivan Marcano gave the Russians hope with a thumping header after the break but Victor Moses quickly put Chelsea back in the driving seat with their second minutes later, only for Gokdeniz Karadeniz to then level the score with another header.

Bibras Natcho gave Rubin the lead on the night from the spot but Chelsea managed to hold on thereafter to reach the semi-finals.

Rafael Benitez made seven chang ... Read more »
Category: News Views: 451 Added: Sky Date: 12.04.2013 - 04:49

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