Category: AFP

VAR turns the tide as Leicester show top-six credentials against Spurs

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Leicester (United Kingdom) (AFP) – Leicester proved their credentials to upset the top-six applecart in the Premier League by coming from behind to beat Tottenham 2-1 at the King Power on Saturday. Harry’s Kane’s improvised opener put Spurs on course for a first away win in the Premier League since January. However, the game swung Leicester’s way after a second Tottenham goal midway through the second half was ruled out by the finest of margins for offside by VAR. The hosts built on that lift immediately as Ricardo Pereira equalised before James Maddison struck the winner from long range five ... Read more

Leicester hit back to shock Spurs with help from VAR

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Leicester (United Kingdom) (AFP) – Tottenham’s long wait for an away win in the Premier League continued as Leicester came from behind to beat last season’s Champions League finalists 2-1 at the King Power on Saturday. Harry Kane’s great improvisation handed Spurs a first-half lead and Mauricio Pochettino’s men thought they had doubled that advantage when Serge Aurier fired home. However, the goal was ruled out by the finest of margins for offside after a VAR review and Leicester compounded Spurs’ pain by equalising two minutes later through Ricardo Pereira. James Maddison’s fine long-range strike five minutes from time then ... Read more

Zidane would quit Real Madrid without backing

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Madrid (AFP) – Zinedine Zidane believes he has the backing of Real Madrid but admits he would leave if he ever felt he had lost the club’s support.  Zidane has come under scrutiny after enduring his worst ever defeat as Madrid coach on Wednesday, a 3-0 loss to Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League.  The result also followed an underwhelming start in La Liga, which has seen Madrid claim two wins and two draws from games against Celta Vigo, Real Valladolid, Villarreal and Levante.  After returning from Paris, Zidane gave his players the day off on Thursday, which surprised those ... Read more

Injury-hit PSG without Icardi, Sarabia for Lyon trip

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Paris (AFP) – Paris Saint-Germain’s injury problems worsened on Saturday as forwards Mauro Icardi and Pablo Sarabia were ruled out of Sunday’s Ligue 1 game at Lyon. Star striker Kylian Mbappe has also failed to recover from a thigh injury suffered in August, leaving PSG coach Thomas Tuchel without five attacking players, with Edinson Cavani and Julian Draxler also still sidelined. “It’s still too risky (to play Mbappe),” said Tuchel. “He’s very close (to playing again), but it (his recovery) is not over.” Winger Sarabia, a close-season signing from Sevilla, picked up a knock in Wednesday’s 3-0 Champions League victory ... Read more

Klopp braces for test from ‘exciting’ Chelsea young guns

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London (AFP) – Jurgen Klopp warned Liverpool on Friday to brace for a fierce fight with the Chelsea youngsters that remind him of the thrilling Borussia Dortmund sides that took Germany and Europe by storm. Klopp, whose Premier League leaders take on Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday, built a dynamic team in his seven years at Dortmund fuelled by gifted prodigies including Mario Goetze, Nuri Sahin, Shinji Kagawa and Robert Lewandowski. He sees more than a few similarities between Dortmund teams that won the Bundesliga in consecutive seasons and reached the Champions final in 2013, and the way Chelsea ... Read more

Harit’s late strike moves Schalke level with leaders Leipzig

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Berlin (AFP) – Amine Harit’s superb last-minute goal saw Schalke snatch a dramatic win over Mainz and move to second in the Bundesliga on Friday, level on points with league leaders RB Leipzig. Schalke have 10 points having played a game more than Leipzig, who travel to Werder Bremen on Saturday, and are two ahead of champions Bayern Munich before their home match with Cologne thanks to Harit’s last gasp solo effort. The Moroccan international won the match for the hosts when he collected the ball and darted towards goal before curling home a spectacular winner with the outside of ... Read more

Guardiola hoping injury-hit City can turn to Mendy

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Manchester (United Kingdom) (AFP) – Pep Guardiola insists Benjamin Mendy can still be a force for injury-hit Manchester City despite the French defender’s own struggles to find top fitness. Mendy has endured a difficult time with City since arriving from Monaco in a £52 million ($64.85 million) deal in 2017. He suffered an anterior cruciate ligament injury in September 2017 and has been fighting for full fitness ever since. Since that day against Crystal Palace, the 24-year-old has only featured in 20 of City’s 118 fixtures in all competitions. Premier League champions City have seen centre-backs Aymeric Laporte and John ... Read more

Strasbourg strike late to stop Nantes topping Ligue 1

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Strasbourg (France) (AFP) – Nantes missed the chance to go top of Ligue 1 on Friday after Ludovic Ajorque’s last-minute penalty saw Strasbourg come from behind to win their first match of the season 2-1. Ajorque struck from the spot after Jean-Ricner Bellegarde was brought down in the area, capping a powerful second-half display that also featured a smart Dimitri Lienard leveller in the 66th minute and moved Strasbourg out of the relegation zone. The defeat means Nantes failed to leapfrog league leaders Paris Saint-Germain despite taking the lead with a fine Kalifa Coulibaly strike midway through the first half. “We ... Read more