What the papers say

Manchester United 1-1 Chelsea: Premier League – live reaction

What the papers say - Sun, 04/28/2019 - 18:29

Another hideous mistake from David de Gea gave Chelsea a point at Old Trafford and surely ended Manchester United’s hopes of finishing in the top four

6.29pm BST

“I feel quite privileged to have watched the two laziest centre forwards in world football on the pitch at the same time,” says Stephen Carr. “It feels as momentous as the Pacino-De Niro scene in ‘Heat’.”

6.26pm BST

That’s an excellent result for Chelsea, who look likely to play Champions League football next season. Manchester United will almost certainly be playing in the Europa League. They started the match superbly and deserved to lead through Juan Mata’s goal. But another bad mistake from David de Gea, which allowed Marcos Alonso to equalise just before half-time, changed the mood of the match and Chelsea were comfortable for almost all of a bitty second half.

6.25pm BST

Peep peep!

6.25pm BST

90+7 min De Gea makes a vital save from Higuain, although he didn’t know much about it.

6.23pm BST

90+6 min There’s a manic desperation to United’s attacking, but not so much in the way of quality.

6.20pm BST

90+3 min: Pedro clears off the line! Young’s deep, inswinging corner from the left was headed firmly towards goal by Rojo, and Pedro danced across the line to head clear. Chelsea would have been fuming had Rojo scored.

6.19pm BST

90+3 min McTominay wins a corner after a good header down from Sanchez, who is actually playing really well.

6.18pm BST

90+2 min Lukaku, who had been flagged offside, is denied anyway by an excellent save by Kepa.

6.18pm BST

90+1 min There are seven added minutes, mainly because of the injuries to Rudiger and Bailly.

6.17pm BST

90 min Hazard’s stinging shot from the edge of the area is blocked by McTominay, who had both arms held tight behind back in the VAR position.

6.16pm BST

89 min Young is booked for dissent. United can’t put Chelsea under any sustained pressure. Lukaku was brilliant in the first half hour but it looks like he shot his bolt.

6.15pm BST

88 min Pedro crashes over the bar from the right side of the box. Chelsea, for all their good play, have hardly bothered David de Gea in the second half.

6.12pm BST

86 min McTominay bullies Kante off the ball and finds Pogba, whose angled through pass to Lukaku is crucially intercepted on the edge of the area by Alonso.

6.12pm BST

85 min Can Manchester United score? They occasionally score.

6.11pm BST

84 min Willian, who is still feeling the impact of Rojo’s studs, limps off to be replaced by Pedro.

6.10pm BST

83 min Chelsea don’t need a winner, but it’s there for them if they want it enough. They are much the better side now.

6.08pm BST

81 min United started so well but they have lost their way in the second half, exemplified by Matic spraying a crossfield pass straight out of play. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer makes his final change, with Scott McTominay replacing Juan Mata.

6.07pm BST

80 min Willian is going to try to carry on, although he’s limping heavily.

6.07pm BST

79 min Rojo is booked for planting his studs into Willian’s ankle. It was an appalling, reckless challenge and he should have been sent off.

6.05pm BST

79 min United miss Marouane Fellaini. They do.

6.05pm BST

78 min Herrera sweeps a good pass out to Young, who then plays a dreadful pass towards Sanchez. He does well to win the ball off David Luiz near the byline, only to rake a miserable cross straight out of play.

6.03pm BST

77 min “Sanchez is improving,” says Matthew Stephens. “He’s touched the ball twice already.”

6.02pm BST

76 min Ruben Loftus-Cheek replaces Kovacic, who is brought off for his own protection.

6.02pm BST

75 min “Saying ‘David Luiz could’ve done X without faking an injury’ is tantamount to saying ‘Romario could’ve just put it in the net without humiliating the keeper so thoroughly’,” says Phil Podolsky. “Some things are signature elements of one’s art.”

6.01pm BST

74 min Willian wins a corner for Chelsea, who look the likelier scores. It’s been a stop-start half, which probably hasn’t helped United, although the bigger problem is their porcelain confidence.

5.59pm BST

73 min “I’d love to know what percentage of dedicated season-ticket football fans who cheer on all their foreign players every week voted for Brexit?” says Nigel Moore. “More than the national average, I bet.”

And the best thing is that, if you do want to place a bet, football can direct you about 500 different companies who will happily take your money. Thank you, football!

5.59pm BST

72 min Willian curls a free-kick over the bar from 25 yards.

5.58pm BST

71 min A stretcher is brought on for Bailly, but he’s able to limp slowly off the field with support from the medical staff. Marcos Rojo replaces him.

5.55pm BST

68 min Now Bailly is down injured after a challenge with Kovacic on the edge of the area. This looks really bad. It’s his right knee, and he’s in agony.

5.54pm BST

67 min Blimey. Bailly flattens Alonso just outside the area with what looked like a two-footed tackle. He got the ball but that doesn’t really matter.

5.53pm BST

66 min David Luiz is fine. I think he faked that injury to justify kicking the ball out of play so that Christensen could come on. Bit weird, as he could have just kicked it out anyway.

5.52pm BST

65 min Christensen comes on for Rudiger, but now David Luiz has gone down holding his groin. Meanwhile, Alexis Sanchez has replaced Marcus Rashford. That looks like an injury as well.

5.51pm BST

65 min “Thoroughly enjoying the fifty-fifty challenge between Eden Hazard and Juan Mata,” says Joe Mann. “The footballing equivalent of war between Luxembourg and Andorra...”

5.51pm BST

64 min Antonio Rudiger is limping off with what looks like a recurrence of his knee injury. Andreas Christensen will replace him.

5.48pm BST

61 min “Further to the debate about De Gea,” says Robert Darby. “It is all well and good playing him against Cardiff and Huddersfield, but putting on his kit and jumping up and down between the posts before the kick-off is likely to be the sum total of all the action he will see.”


5.47pm BST

60 min Kovacic, who has already been booked, leaves one on Herrera. It wasn’t enough for a second yellow card, but his next tackle might be.

5.46pm BST

59 min A draw is of little use to United, unless they want to play on Thursday nights next season. It would be a decent result for Chelsea, though.

5.45pm BST

58 min Chelsea are looking threatening at the moment. It’s been a very enjoyable game, full of subtle momentum shifts.

5.43pm BST

56 min Hazard tries to test de Gea with a long-range shot that spins behind off Young. Willian’s corner is headed away by Bailly.

5.42pm BST

56 min “Couldn’t disagree more about de Gea,” says Reg Gorczynski. “He’s shown little loyalty to the club… missed a transfer last time only because of delayed fax…clearly holding out as (like Sanchez) he sees the club as a cash cow. I’d move him, and several other like-minded players, out NOW!”


5.42pm BST

55 min A United free-kick falls nicely for Bailly, who drags an apologetic left-footed shot straight at Arrizabalaga from 12 yards.

5.40pm BST

53 min Kovacic is booked for kicking the ball away.

5.40pm BST

52 min Willian is booked for a foul on Mata. He walks away in disgust, motioning extravagantly that he got the ball. Replays show he was right.

5.38pm BST

50 min Rashford’s free-kick kicks up awkwardly in front of Arrizabalaga, who does well to hold on with United players sniffing around for a fumble.

5.36pm BST

50 min Kante shoves Bailly over 30 yards from goal. Hazard was fouled just before that by Matic, so Chelsea will have a bit of a humour on if this leads to a goal.

5.34pm BST

48 min The manner of that equaliser has deflated United and invigorated Chelsea, who have started the second half confidently.

5.32pm BST

46 min Peep peep! Chelsea begin the second half, probably with instructions to shoot on sight.

5.32pm BST

“The knives will really be out for David de Gea but we must not forget that he is our best player since Sir Alex’s days and thus persist with his slump even if it is a gamble with the Champions league qualification,” says Adarsh Ashokan. “We as a club must show faith in him in such testing times which would show him that we value him very highly as a club and would like to resign a new contract.”

For what it’s worth - nowt - I agree. If they were about to play Liverpool in a Champions League semi-final, I think there would be a big decision to make, but I’d play him against Huddersfield and Cardiff. He’s an all-time great who’s having a bad spell; happens to them all.

5.30pm BST

J Stand chanting De Gea's name. Stretford End will doubtless warmly applaud him when he re-emerges. Deserves to be cut some slack but his form rivals his first six months at the club. #mufc

5.23pm BST

“A friend of mine once went on a double date in Chelsea, only to find out her half of the date was Juan Mata,” says Norrie Hernon. “‘Quite shy and very polite,’ apparently. No, she didn’t give any further details, despite my whinnying. Which is exactly how I imagined him.”

5.21pm BST

“I’m suggesting that after all that fawning, Neville is not the most partial of judges,” says Paul Fitzgerald.

Hmm, I’m not sure what your point is. We know Neville’s allegiance, and his friendship with Solskjaer, but whenever I’ve seen him on Sky Sports he has been as near to objective as dammit. When the time comes that Solskjaer is fighting for his job, I think he’ll be as considered and fair as he was with Mourinho, van Gaal and Moyes. I would agree there is a developing problem with grating bias, but there are other pundits who come to mind before Neville. Each to their own, I guess.

5.18pm BST

Peep peep! Juan Mata gave United an early lead before another sad error from David de Gea led to Marcos Alonso’s equaliser. The scoreline flatters Chelsea a touch, though they’ll not give a solitary one about that.

5.16pm BST

45+1 min Another opening for United. Rashford bursts into the box on the right and lofts a cross towards Mata beyond the far post. He cushions it back into the middle and Chelsea scramble it behind for a corner.

5.14pm BST

That was another surreal error. Rudiger moved forward and smashed a hopeful shot from 30 yards. It was well struck but straight at de Gea, who fumbled it to his right. Alonso, who was the only one to follow the ball in, bounced a clever shot across de Gea and in off the far post.

5.13pm BST

David de Gea has made another mistake!

5.12pm BST

43 min Herrera is booked for a foul on Alonso.

5.11pm BST

41 min A double stepover from Pogba is too much for Azpilicueta, who boots him and is lucky not to be booked. Pogba has been excellent in the first half.

5.10pm BST

40 min Mata’s lovely, dipping cross from the left is headed behind by the stopping Alonso. Nothing comes of the corner.

5.08pm BST

38 min “A lot of things are ridiculous,” says Paul Fitzgerald. “Such as Neville asking Ole where he wants his statue after the PSG game.”

Are you suggesting that was a serious question?

5.07pm BST

37 min I think Matic was trying to hold Azpilicueta off, but ultimately he elbowed him in the face and should at least have been booked.

5.06pm BST

36 min Azpilicueta is down holding his face after being hit by a flailing arm from Matic. Martin Atkinson waves play on, and United eventually kick the ball out.

5.05pm BST

35 min Matic slides a penetrative pass down the inside-left channel for Rashford, who runs at Rudiger in the area but gets the ball stuck under his feet.

5.04pm BST

34 min Lukaku, who is really up for this game, shoulder barges Azpilicueta into the advertising boards as they challenge for a ball on the left. Great stuff.

5.03pm BST

33 min Mata, played in on the right of the area by Herrera, crosses too close to Arrizabalaga. This is a fun, open game.

5.02pm BST

32 min “If Mata writes an autobiography,” says Kevin Wilson, “I want to read more about his love of Chinese art.”

I’d like to hear his thoughts on why so few footballers have bothered to pledge 1 per cent of their income to Common Goal.

4.59pm BST

30 min Bailly almost makes it 2-0. Young swung a corner from the left towards the six-yard line, where Bailly got between Alonso and Rudiger to plant a downward header just wide of the far post.

4.58pm BST

29 min “There are many factors, of course,” says Colum Farrelly, “but to what extent has the absence of Ander Herrera contributed to Utd’s recent poor form?”

A bit, yeah, although he did play in the FA Cup game at Wolves that really started the slump. He’s limited but I like him a lot and they’ll miss him.

4.58pm BST

28 min The resulting corner is headed by Rudiger onto the back of Alonso’s head, and luckily for Chelsea the ball ricochets to safety.

4.57pm BST

28 min Lukaku plays another nice through pass, this time to Rashford. Azpilicueta tracks him all the way to concede a corner. Excellent defending.

4.56pm BST

26 min Chelsea have been much the better side in the last 10 minutes, although they haven’t really worked David de Gea.

4.55pm BST

24 min “Mata’s only 31?” sniffs Hubert O’Hearn. “Seems like he’s been around since Stanley Matthews. One thing – when he retires, if he wants to do it, Juan Mata will have one fascinating autobiography to read. The scenes he’s seen in and out of clubhouses at Chelsea and United, my my.”

He’s not really the whistle-blowing type, is he.

4.53pm BST

23 min Willian and Jorginho try the Beckham/Scholes corner. Goal kick to Manchester United.

4.52pm BST

22 min This is a good spell for Chelsea. A poor header from Shaw goes straight to Higuain, but he redeems himself by blocking the subsequent shot.

4.49pm BST

20 min A couple of corners for Chelsea, the second of which is half cleared to Jorginho 25 yards out. Goal kick to Manchester United.

4.48pm BST

19 min There was a lovely line from Rob Hughes about Romario - “darting between defenders like a lizard between rocks” - which comes to mind even time Hazard slips past people. He is despicably good.

4.47pm BST

18 min Alonso cracks the free-kick over the bar.

4.47pm BST

16 min Hazard slips gloriously past Herrera, who trips him 25 yards from goal. He’s fortunate not to get booked for that.

4.46pm BST

14 min “Seems like Man U’s problem is pretty simply a lack of a technical director with clear authority over transfers,” says Joe Harvey. “An additional problem seems to be an organizational chart where no one knows who’s precisely responsible for what. For my taste, the TD has sole say and is higher up the chart than the manager, but that’s just me.”

Yes, agreed. When you see clubs like City (Manchester and Norwich), you realise how important it is to have a clear identity and purpose. I mean, there are lots of other problems at United but this is probably the biggest one.

4.42pm BST

12 min This is the same United system - and the same personnel, bar Bailly and De Gea - that Solskjaer used when they put Chelsea out of the FA Cup in February.

4.42pm BST

The goal was made by Lukaku, who chipped a beautiful pass over the defence into the path of Luke Shaw. Kepa came out to block the shot, so Shaw touched the ball across the area for Mata to score his right foot. There were a few defenders on the line but Mata stayed cool and passed it into the net.

4.41pm BST

It’s been coming, and that’s a really nice goal from Juan Mata.

4.40pm BST

10 min Lukaku plays an excellent pass to Shaw, whose low cross is kicked away by Azpilicueta. United are playing some good one-touch football.

4.38pm BST

9 min The first goal is even more important than usual, given the fragile confidence of both sides, United in particular.

4.37pm BST

8 min It’s been a breezy, open start to the game, with United in particular showing a zest and intent that hasn’t been evident of late.

4.36pm BST

7 min Rashford beats Alonso with a lovely turn on the right. He looks really sharp.

4.36pm BST

5 min “How can Neville be seen as an impartial judge when he obviously has an ever-ready excuse available for his friend Ole,” says Paul Fitzgerald. “Man Utd’s biggest problem is not just Ole’s lack of nous but former Utd players’ omnipresence and their sense of entitlement over the Utd debate.”

I think that’s harsh, verging on ridiculous, but that’s just my opinion.

4.34pm BST

4 min: Big save from Kepa! That was a great chance for Lukaku, who made a good run onto a long ball forward from Shaw and was through on goal. He spent too long trying to move the ball onto his left foot, which allowed Rudiger to get round, but Lukaku still managed to hit a low shot that was smothered by the outrushing Kepa.

4.33pm BST

4 min “Right now the Premier League table looks ridiculous,” says Phil Podolsky, “but overall the hierarchy at the very top seems to be less rigid than in all the other top leagues. You can see Chelsea buying, I dunno, Griezmann, Coutinho and Alaba and challenging for the title, with Liverpool weakened after losing Mane and Salah to the Spanish big two, City facing uncertainty after Pep walks out at the end of next season etc. (I know Chelsea have the transfer ban which they’re appealing, but in the realm of the hypothetical etc.)”

Yep, agreed. The top six has been set in stone for years, the Leicester miracle notwithstanding, but there’s been a lot of change within that sextet. It’s a different kind of predictable to Spain, Italy and Germany. I still prefer the Championship, though.

4.32pm BST

3 min A good attack from Chelsea. Hazard hammers a dangerous low cross that Kante flicks towards goal on the six-yard line, and Shaw comes round to make a fine block.

4.31pm BST

2 min “True about Azpilicueta,” says Nelson Kalberer, “but doesn’t he always look like he wants to kill someone?”

Yes. Here’s a picture of him in the tunnel, in fact.

4.30pm BST

1 min Peep peep! United kick off from right to left.

4.24pm BST

The players are in the tunnel. Cesar Azpilicueta looks like he wants to kill someone. Eden Hazard is laughing and joking.

4.09pm BST

Manchester City have beaten Burnley 1-0 at Turf Moor, which leaves them two wins away from retaining the title.

Related: Burnley 0-1 Manchester City: Premier League – live!

3.37pm BST

There are just over 15 minutes remaining in the vital match between Burnley and Manchester City. You will not believe the score!

Related: Burnley v Manchester City: Premier League – live!

3.36pm BST

Pre-match reading

Related: Ole Gunnar Solskjær keen to have the last laugh ahead of Chelsea showdown

Related: Maurizio Sarri: I need two more years to make Chelsea title contenders

3.35pm BST

Ander Herrera, so impressive in the last two months, returns to the side in what looks like a diamond midfield. Juan Mata and Eric Bailly have also been taken out of cold storage.

Manchester United (4-D-2) de Gea; Young, Bailly, Lindelof, Shaw; Matic; Herrera, Pogba; Mata; Rashford, Lukaku.
Substitutes: Romero, Rojo, McTominay, Darmian, Pereira, Sanchez, Martial.

2.35pm BST

Hello and welcome to live coverage of Manchester United v Chelsea from Old Trafford, the latest instalment in the strangely compelling stumble for Champions League places.

Actually, to call it a stumble might be bit generous. Spurs have lost six of their last league 10 games; Arsenal have lost four of the last five and were plugged 3-0 by Leicester earlier today. Manchester United have lost four of their last six league games – and seven out of nine in all competitions – while Chelsea, who are in reasonable form compared to the others, have still lost five of their last seven away games in the Premier League.

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Categories: What the papers say

Ole Gunnar Solskjær keen to have the last laugh ahead of Chelsea showdown

What the papers say - Sat, 04/27/2019 - 22:30

The Manchester United manager insists he can halt an alarming slump in form and stave off talks of crisis with a top-four finish

The Ole Gunnar in jokes have suddenly stopped raising a smile. Ole at the wheel was fun while it lasted, but the mood has switched in a matter of weeks to the driver being thrown under the bus.

“It was Roy Keane who said that, wasn’t it?” the Manchester United manager asked on Friday in perhaps the nearest he will ever get to an “Et tu, Brute?” utterance. Solskjær is loyal to his friends, of whom he counts Keane as one of the oldest, though he seems to be in denial about what has gone awry since his job at the club was made permanent.

Related: Premier League top four: who will stumble into the Champions League?

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Categories: What the papers say

Manchester United v Chelsea: match preview

What the papers say - Sat, 04/27/2019 - 09:00

Three wins from the last three games will give Manchester United the best chance of claiming a Champions League berth. Yet the 527 minutes since Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s team last scored from open play is an encouraging statistic for Chelsea as they arrive knowing victory will help their own top-four challenge. Given how Arsenal split the two in the table, a draw by final whistle will not aid United or Chelsea greatly. Jamie Jackson

Sunday 4.30pm Sky Sports Premier League

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Juventus keen on signing Paul Pogba but may need to sell players first

What the papers say - Sat, 04/27/2019 - 08:00
  • United likely to demand €130m for French midfielder
  • Juventus have met with Pogba’s agent, Mino Raiola

Juventus would like to sign Paul Pogba from Manchester United this summer but would have to sell two or three important players to be able to afford the Frenchman. United are likely to demand €130m (£112.4m) for the 26-year-old.

United want to keep the World Cup winner but his second spell at the club has not been a success so far. The midfielder may look to leave in the summer, especially if Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s side misses out on a Champions League place for next season.

Related: PFA Team of the Year: Manchester United’s Paul Pogba a shock inclusion

Twitter: follow us at @guardian_sport

Related: Leicester keen to sign Atalanta striker Andrea Petagna in summer for €20m

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Maurizio Sarri believes his first season at Chelsea has been a success

What the papers say - Fri, 04/26/2019 - 22:30

• Players urged to make top four and Europa League final
• ‘The season, at the moment, is good,’ manager says

Maurizio Sarri will consider his first season at Chelsea a success whatever the outcome of the club’s pursuit of Champions League qualification, but he has challenged his players to secure a top-four finish and a place in the Europa League final in the weeks to come.

Chelsea can open a six‑point gap over Manchester United, effectively knocking their hosts out of top‑four contention, by winning at Old Trafford on Sunday with qualification for Europe’s elite competition in their own hands. Sarri has also taken the team to a Europa League semi-final against Eintracht Frankfurt, and saw his side beaten on penalties by Manchester City in the Carabao Cup final.

Related: Premier League top four: who will stumble into the Champions League?

Twitter: follow us at @guardian_sport

Related: Doing something right despite the hysteria: in defence of Maurizio Sarri | Barney Ronay

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Premier League top four: who will stumble into the Champions League?

What the papers say - Fri, 04/26/2019 - 18:59

Tottenham, Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United have one win from eight games between them – who will win the race?

The battle for the top four continues this weekend with all four teams seemingly doing their utmost to miss out. Tottenham, Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United have managed a single win between them in eight games (and that was Spurs’ late win against Brighton) and Mauricio Pochettino’s team recently picked up four points from an available 15.

So with this in mind we asked our writers how it came to this and why these clubs are still fighting to secure a place in the top four with three games to go – as well as if there is any hope of any of them mounting a serious title challenge in the next two years.

Related: Title race, top four, promotion and relegation – what's still at stake?

Related: Premier League: 10 things to look out for this weekend

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Ole Gunnar Solskjær on Pogba: 'I think Paul is going to be here' – video

What the papers say - Fri, 04/26/2019 - 13:20

Ole Gunnar Solskjær believes that the future of Paul Pogba is at Manchester United. The midfielder has been linked with a move to Real Madrid, however Solskjær said: 'I can assure you that he is very determined to be successful at United.' Pogba's side have lost four of their last six matches and, despite their recent dip in form, the Frenchman made it into the PFA Team of the Year. United host Chelsea on Sunday in a key battle for the top four

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De Gea’s Manchester United place is secure despite poor form, says Solskjær

What the papers say - Fri, 04/26/2019 - 10:39
• ‘I trust David,’ says United manager of keeper after recent errors
• Solskjær believes Paul Pogba will remain at club next season

Ole Gunnar Solskjær has stated he will not drop David De Gea for Sunday’s visit of Chelsea despite the Manchester United goalkeeper’s shaky form.

De Gea was at fault for each of Manchester City’s goals in Wednesday’s 2-0 derby defeat at Old Trafford. The Spaniard was also culpable for Lionel Messi’s second in the 3-0 loss at Barcelona in last week’s Champions League loss.

Related: Solskjær expects Pogba to stay at United: weekend countdown – live!

Related: Dominant Manchester City show how vast the gulf has become with United | Jonathan Wilson

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Premier League: 10 things to look out for this weekend

What the papers say - Fri, 04/26/2019 - 00:01

A chance for Shaqiri to shine, City may need to show their dark side and Cardiff can pile pressure on Brighton

Pep Guardiola is not usually short of post-match praise for his players, but he struck a different note after the Manchester derby win. “Tonight we can enjoy it, but tomorrow it’s over, so we have to be focused,” he said. “I know people are going to talk about how beautiful, how handsome we are, but now we have to go to Burnley”. Guardiola is rightly taking nothing for granted even after taking the necessary six points from Spurs and United. Burnley were one of six teams to take points off City last season and have routinely posed problems for the top six this term. It is to City’s advantage that they have been winning ugly for a while. The 6-0 thrashing of Chelsea in February was perhaps the last time City were at full throttle in the league, but the wins have kept coming, drawn out through force of will. Guardiola’s handsome team will need to show their dark side again on Sunday. NM

Related: Manchester City's derby delight, focus on Burnley and eggs – Football Weekly Extra

Related: PFA Team of the Year: Manchester United’s Paul Pogba a shock inclusion

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The Bernardo principle, Alexis Sánchez and Manchester City’s great paradox | Barney Ronay

What the papers say - Thu, 04/25/2019 - 20:12
Alexis Sánchez might have been in Bernardo Silva’s place on Wednesday had things panned out differently but that would have gone against the tone and texture of Pep Guardiola’s team

Of the many telling facts, stats and scalding-hot takes to emerge from Wednesday night’s Manchester derby – a game that felt as if two clubs were passing briefly on airport travelators, waving curtly as they rolled off in opposite directions – perhaps the most poignant was the touch map of Alexis Sánchez.

Related: Dominant Manchester City show how vast the gulf has become with United | Jonathan Wilson

Alexis Sanchez came on for a total of 12 minutes tonight.

This is his touch map...#ManchesterDerby #MUNMCI pic.twitter.com/yHyyaunyQK

Related: Manchester City's derby delight, focus on Burnley and eggs – Football Weekly Extra

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Dominant Manchester City show how vast the gulf has become with United | Jonathan Wilson

What the papers say - Thu, 04/25/2019 - 13:10

While Ole Gunnar Solskjær tries to reconjure old values, City are breaking free from their past with the title a step closer

In prospect, six weeks ago, in that golden age when Manchester United didn’t have a permanent manager, the derby looked like being the biggest obstacle between Manchester City and retaining the league title. History, perhaps, will continue to view it as such: it is a derby, it is United; how could it not have been a night of furious passions and impossible tension? And yet in the moment, once the initial United surge was over – there was, at least, some sort of reaction to Sunday’s humiliation at Everton – the overwhelming sense was of how vast the gulf between the sides has become.

That is 11 league wins in a row now for City, a run of absurd consistency. United battled, at least until going behind, but as Roy Keane pointed out that should be a prerequisite. The presence of a bit of fight, though, served only to highlight the difference in quality, a disparity highlighted by the way United set out with three central defenders shielded by three deep-lying midfielders – and nobody accused Ole Gunnar Solskjær of needless ideological negativity; breaking the game up was just the best way of trying to get something out of the game.

Related: Obsession with past leaves Solskjær’s United stuck in a footballing Pompeii | Barney Ronay

Related: PFA Team of the Year: Manchester United’s Paul Pogba a shock inclusion

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Categories: What the papers say

Football quiz: how much do you know about Premier League title races?

What the papers say - Thu, 04/25/2019 - 10:45

Who ate well? Who left it late? Who won on goal difference?

Which player was mentioned by name in Kevin Keegan’s infamous "I would love it" rant during the 1995-96 run-in?

Les Ferdinand

Roy Keane

Stuart Pearce

David Platt

Which club has won the Premier League on goal difference?

Blackburn Rovers



Manchester City

Chelsea’s 2-0 win at Anfield in 2014 is often remembered for Steven Gerrard’s slip. Which player made his league debut for Chelsea in that game and was named man of the match (in the Guardian, at least)?

Lewis Baker

Nathan Ake

Tomas Kalas

Mohamed Salah

Manchester United won the first Premier League title in 1993. Who came second?

Norwich City

Blackburn Rovers

Aston Villa


Arsenal did not lose any of their 38 league matches in the 2003-04 season. How many did they win?





Manchester City won the title in 2012 thanks to a 3-2 victory over QPR on the final day. When did Edin Dzeko and Sergio Agüero score their goals?

The 87th minute and 89th minute

The 90th minute and 93rd minute

The 92nd minute and 94th minute

The 95th minute and 98th minute

What food did Claudio Ranieri promise his Leicester players if they kept clean sheets during their run to the title in 2016?


Fish and chips



Manchester United pipped Chelsea to the title by two points in the 2007-08 season. Which player made the most league appearances for United that season?

Wes Brown

Cristiano Ronaldo

Paul Scholes

Edwin van der Sar

Arsenal beat Everton 4-0 in May 1998 to clinch the title. Which player (who went on to become a Premier League manager) opened the scoring with an own goal?

David Moyes

Slaven Bilic

Aidy Boothroyd

Owen Coyle

Which club won the title even though they lost their last two games of the season?


Blackburn Rovers

Manchester City


1 and above.

Oh dear

2 and above.

Oh dear

3 and above.

Not familiar with the title race. Do you support Spurs?

5 and above.

Not familiar with the title race. Do you support Spurs?

4 and above.

Not familiar with the title race. Do you support Spurs?

6 and above.

That's an impressive score.  

7 and above.

You made top four but didn't win the title

8 and above.

You made top four but didn't win the title

9 and above.

Close but you just missed out on goal difference

0 and above.

Oh dear

10 and above.

You are the title winner of this quiz

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Categories: What the papers say

PFA Team of the Year: Manchester United’s Paul Pogba a shock inclusion

What the papers say - Thu, 04/25/2019 - 09:17

• United midfielder makes players’ XI
• City have six players in team and Liverpool four

Title chasing Manchester City and Liverpool dominated the The Professional Footballers’ Association’s team of the year when it was announced on Thursday but there was a surprise inclusion for Paul Pogba.

Related: Leroy Sané fires Manchester City past United to tip scales in title race

The PFA Premier League Team of the Year!#PFAawards | #TOTY pic.twitter.com/YBWOhoJsQI

Related: Obsession with past leaves Solskjær’s United stuck in a footballing Pompeii | Barney Ronay

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Categories: What the papers say

Obsession with past leaves Solskjaer’s United stuck in a footballing Pompeii

What the papers say - Thu, 04/25/2019 - 00:30

Manchester United’s derby performance was that off a club cranking out the same jangly playlist while locked in a time warp as the present ebbs away

Not even close. Not even close to being close. If there is an accurate measure of Manchester City’s domestic dominance over the past two seasons, and more specifically that combined 50-point lead over the creaky 1990s tribute act from across the way, it is perhaps the sight of Old Trafford at the final whistle of this room-temperature 2-0 derby victory.

As the home crowd filed out in added time you could see the bones of this ground open up, its clanky iron clavicles exposed to the air. The only noise came from the sky blue corner where City’s fans sang “this city is ours” and – a little prematurely: the bigger test of Burnley away is yet to come – a few late rounds of “Campeones”.

Related: Leroy Sané fires Manchester City past United to tip scales in title race

Related: Pep Guardiola turns Manchester City’s focus to Burnley after derby win

Related: Manchester United 0-2 Manchester City: Premier League player ratings | Jamie Jackson

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Categories: What the papers say

Ole Gunnar Solskjær: 'I need to see who is willing to make sacrifices for Manchester United' – video

What the papers say - Thu, 04/25/2019 - 00:30

Ole Gunnar Solskjær has said his side did not have enough quality in Manchester United's 2-0 derby defeat to Manchester City.

The loss for United may prove to be damaging in their hopes to finish in the top four, as they remain in sixth place with three matches left to play.

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Categories: What the papers say

Pep Guardiola turns Manchester City’s focus to Burnley after derby win

What the papers say - Thu, 04/25/2019 - 00:04
• City are a point ahead of Liverpool with three games to go
• Guardiola: ‘We still have a job to do’

Pep Guardiola has called on his Manchester City players to finish the season with three more victories after watching them win 2-0 against Manchester United to move into a position of strength at the top of the Premier League table.

City are now a point ahead of Liverpool with three games to go after second-half goals from Bernardo Silva and Leroy Sané extended United’s run to seven defeats from their last nine games, their worst sequence of results since 1962.

Related: Leroy Sané fires Manchester City past United to tip scales in title race

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Categories: What the papers say

Leroy Sané fires Manchester City past United to tip scales in title race

What the papers say - Wed, 04/24/2019 - 22:00

Every season there is always one game in the title race when the team who are going to win the Premier League know it is going to be their year. One game when everything turns in their favour, all the hard work comes together and the supporters can think it is going to be a season to cherish.

For Manchester City, was this that night? It certainly felt that way even if they still have to negotiate a tricky assignment at Burnley on Sunday before closing their season with a home game against Leicester and a trip to Brighton. City have made it 11 league wins in a row and if they can extend that sequence to 14 there will be nothing Liverpool, in second place, can do about it. No wonder there was such jubilation at the final whistle from the players in blue.

Related: Pep Guardiola turns Manchester City’s focus to Burnley after derby win

Related: Manchester United 0-2 Manchester City: Premier League player ratings | Jamie Jackson

Related: Diogo Jota-inspired Wolves deal fresh blow to Arsenal’s top-four hopes

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Categories: What the papers say

Manchester United v Manchester City: Premier League – live!

What the papers say - Wed, 04/24/2019 - 18:30

2.00pm BST

Hello. They’ve been playing Manchester derbies since 1881, the year Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson first met and Pat Garrett killed Billy the Kid. And there has never been a United-City duel in a context exactly like today’s. The 178th showdown between the clubs is assured of at least mention in each clubs’ history books no matter how it unfolds. Some shade of glory beckons for both, but deep regret, even ignominy, also lurks. This match has immediate importance to each team’s season and is a bellwether game for what could happen beyond that. And Liverpool are watching in the role of helpless bystanders hoping that United, their fiercest rivals, will do them a favour in spite of themselves. But what if the twist in this season’s title race is that there is no twist? And City just keep on winning.

Pep Guardiola’s men haven’t dropped a point in the Premier League since late January and there’s little to suggest they’re about to slip up now, especially not against a United side who have been in wretched form, with Sunday’s 4-0 defeat at Everton not so much humiliating as contemptible. Everything suggests the gulf between the neighbours is growing. But this is a derby. This is at Old Trafford. City are not perfect and United do have some quality and, presumably, some pride.

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Categories: What the papers say

Manchester City fans could teach Brexit Britain how to put the fun in failure | Daniel Lavelle

What the papers say - Wed, 04/24/2019 - 08:00
Win or lose, leave or remain – City supporters know it’s important never to take yourself too seriously

The British are celebrated for their ability to laugh at themselves. Which is good – because we’re not celebrated for much else at the moment. But even our talent for self-mockery is being strained. The cause is understandable: Westminster’s incompetence is so farcical it should be funny. But it’s not. We’re in danger of becoming a nation of dour, po-faced haters (and self-haters). So thank the lord for Manchester City fans. And as a Man United fan I never thought I’d hear myself say that.

In these dark days it is the blue half of Manchester that is showing the rest of the country it is still possible to not take yourself too seriously. City learned the hard way. They endured 35 years of pain – not winning a single trophy while United swept up everything in front of them. And in that time they learned the invaluable lesson – it’s best to poke fun at yourself before others get the chance.

Related: My team lost, but Man City v Spurs was better theatre than Shakespeare | Simon Hattenstone

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Categories: What the papers say