What the papers say

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Updated: 1 hour 11 min ago

Jürgen Klopp’s fallen Premier League kings have five games to save season

Sat, 05/01/2021 - 22:30

Reunion with United arrives with Liverpool’s reign almost over and questions mounting about the future

Mohamed Salah had tossed his shirt away in celebration and Alisson, perhaps particularly eager to mark a rare assist, had sprinted 100 yards to become the first to join him when Anfield erupted into a chorus not heard there for years: “We’re gonna win the league,” declared those previously wary of sounding over-confident.

It was January 2020. Liverpool had taken 91 of 93 points available, were 16 clear at the top of the Premier League, 30 ahead of the defeated Manchester United. The visitors’ No 10 was not Bruno Fernandes, then a Sporting Lisbon player, but Andreas Pereira. The spectre of the unemployed Mauricio Pochettino threatened to haunt Ole Gunnar Solskjær.

Related: Liverpool’s Premier League task will get harder, admits Jürgen Klopp

Related: How Guardiola transformed misfiring Manchester City into champions elect | Jamie Jackson

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Manchester United v Liverpool: match preview

Sat, 05/01/2021 - 09:00

After Manchester United’s 6-2 shellacking of Roma in the Europa League semi-final, Liverpool will hardly fancy taking on a home team 13 points ahead of them with five games left to play. That amounts to a 46-point swing from last season: Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s side trailed home 33 points behind Jürgen Klopp’s champions last term. That is further encouragement for United, but do not count Liverpool out in what is traditionally a fiercely-contested game. Victory at Old Trafford would boost Liverpool’s fading top-four hopes – but could also end their reign and confirm Manchester City as champions. Jamie Jackson

Sunday 4.30pm Sky Sports Premier League

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Solskjær says fans must be heard as Manchester United prepare for protest

Fri, 04/30/2021 - 17:00
  • Supporters angry at Super League plans and ownership
  • Up to 10,000 expected at Liverpool match on Sunday

Ole Gunnar Solskjær stressed the importance of fans being heard as thousands of Manchester United supporters prepare to descend on Old Trafford for what the manager hopes will be a “peaceful” protest.

The departing executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward followed the co-chairman Joel Glazer in apologising to supporters for the club’s attempt to join the European Super League at an emergency fans forum on Friday and promised United “do not seek any revival of the Super League”.

Related: Edinson Cavani and Bruno Fernandes help Manchester United hit Roma for six

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‘Job isn’t done’: Solskjær wary of Roma despite Manchester United thrashing

Thu, 04/29/2021 - 23:57
  • Manager warns his players Europa League semi-final isn’t over
  • Solskjær wants Cavani to stay at Old Trafford

Ole Gunnar Solskjær put a quartet of recent semi-final stumbles behind him as Manchester United routed Roma to all but book a place in next month’s Europa League final.

“We don’t feel the job is done but this was a good job done,” said Solskjær after a sometimes surreal first leg at Old Trafford, where United trailed 2-1 at the interval but ended up winning 6-2 after an apparently stern half-time homily from their manager.

Related: Edinson Cavani and Bruno Fernandes help Manchester United hit Roma for six

Related: Nicolas Pépé strikes from spot to give Arsenal a lifeline against Villarreal

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Edinson Cavani and Bruno Fernandes help Manchester United hit Roma for six

Thu, 04/29/2021 - 22:10

Manchester United emerged from an invigorating contest with a surely unassailable advantage that all but places them in the Europa League final next month.

This victory, secured despite a 2-1 deficit at half-time, had the feel of the next major step in the evolution of Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s side. Bruno Fernandes’s 70th-minute penalty may have been dubiously awarded – Chris Smalling’s “foul” on Edinson Cavani appeared to be the latter merely falling over – but United’s talisman made no mistake.

Related: ‘Job isn’t done’: Solskjær wary of Roma despite Manchester United thrashing

Related: Nicolas Pépé strikes from spot to give Arsenal a lifeline against Villarreal

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Manchester United v Roma: Europa League semi-final – live!

Thu, 04/29/2021 - 18:15

4.04pm BST

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try and try again

Even Robert the Bruce didn’t advocate a fifth attempt. His legendary quote, supposedly delivered to his troops before they routed the English at Bannockburn in 1314, stopped at the fourth try. Tonight and next Thursday, Manchester United will go one better, or maybe that should be one worse. This tie against Roma is their fifth semi-final in the last 15 months; so far they have won none of them.

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Classic YouTube | Ali and Frazier’s studio scrap, Man Utd v Liverpool memories and Phil Tufnell

Thu, 04/29/2021 - 10:00

This week’s roundup also features NHL opportunism, a goalkeeper assist and three monstrous UFC finishes

1) Sixty years ago today, ABC’s Wide World of Sports debuted on American television. Here’s Evil Knievel’s first jump on the show, from March 1967; Arnold Schwarzenegger winning Mr World in 1970; a show from January 1974 featuring a row between Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali (it’s all worth your time, but here’s the actual physical bit); and a world-record high dive challenge from 1983.

2) Last Saturday saw three UFC title fights, all of which ended in devastating style. Here’s Kamaru Usman v Jorge Masvidal at men’s welterweight; Zhang Weili v Rose Namajunas at women’s strawweight; and Valentina Shevchenko v Jessica Andrade at women’s flyweight.

Related: Champions League latest and Posh champagne on ice – Football Weekly

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Europa League: previews and predictions for the semi-finals

Thu, 04/29/2021 - 08:00

The team news, tactics and form guides for Manchester United v Roma and Villarreal v Arsenal

By Ben McAleer for WhoScored

Ole Gunnar Solskjær is looking to end his dire record in semi-finals when Manchester United take on Roma. The Norwegian has lost his last four semi-finals, falling to defeat twice to Manchester City in the League Cup, to Chelsea in the FA Cup and to Sevilla at this stage of the Europa League last season.

Related: Solskjær insists he meant no disrespect with remarks that riled Roma fans

Related: Chris Smalling’s return gives Roma hope for Manchester United clash | Nicky Bandini

Related: Arteta backs Kroenkes and insists fans would be ‘surprised’ by owners’ work

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Solskjær insists he meant no disrespect with remarks that riled Roma fans

Wed, 04/28/2021 - 15:18
  • Manchester United manager features on Roma fans’ poster
  • Solskjær full of praise for club before Europa League semi-final

Ole Gunnar Solskjær has admitted comments he made about Roma may have sounded disrespectful to Manchester United’s Europa League semi-final opponents, but said that was never his intention.

United host Roma in Thursday’s opening leg hoping to reach a first final in five attempts under Solskjær. The manager was asked about the Italian club after knocking out Granada in the previous round and is believed by Roma fans to have said: “I don’t know them and I haven’t seen them play.”

Related: Chris Smalling’s return gives Roma hope for Manchester United clash | Nicky Bandini

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Chris Smalling’s return gives Roma hope for Manchester United clash | Nicky Bandini

Wed, 04/28/2021 - 12:39

Roma’s domestic form has unravelled but their defensive talisman will be available to face his former club

As Paulo Fonseca watched relegation-threatened Cagliari score against his Roma team for the third time, he chose to see the glass as half-full. This had been another grim Sunday afternoon in a spring packed full of them, but at least he had been able to get two of his first-choice defenders back on the pitch ahead of Thursday’s Europa League semi-final against Manchester United.

“The important thing was for Chris [Smalling] and [Leonardo] Spinazzola to play [after recent injuries],” Fonseca affirmed afterward, highlighting the Englishman’s 59 minutes as especially pleasing. Smalling had been out for six weeks with a knee injury, during which time he endured the trauma of an armed robbery at his home. “He played really well,” said Fonseca. “The team looked confident with Chris.”

Related: Chris Smalling and family ‘shaken up but unharmed’ after armed robbery

Related: Milan and Juventus facing real threat of missing out on Champions League | Nicky Bandini

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Manchester United’s caution on the pitch reflects the club’s corporate culture | Jonathan Liew

Tue, 04/27/2021 - 08:00

The team’s sense of tactical trepidation is a product of the decisions made by the Glazers and Ed Woodward

According to reports, the high‑powered meeting between Boris Johnson and Ed Woodward at 10 Downing Street earlier this month was actually a chance encounter that occurred when the two men stumbled across each other in a corridor. Instinctively, this feels about right. After all, these are two men for whom stumbling has been their defining professional technique: over decisions and into positions of immense and unanswerable influence.

Who knows what was discussed? Perhaps the prime minister and the Manchester United executive vice-chairman bonded over their apparent shared indifference towards football, and the strain of having to feign otherwise. One thing we are told was certainly not on the agenda was the European Super League, which was in its late stages of gestation. Downing Street insists the prime minister was completely oblivious to the whole thing, which – given it basically took him two months to grasp the existence of a deadly pandemic – feels weirdly plausible.

Related: Maguire takes out frustration on Fred in Manchester United’s draw at Leeds

The United product is cautious, risk-averse, football played with a sense of trepidation

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Premier League and Carabao Cup: 10 talking points from the weekend

Mon, 04/26/2021 - 08:00

Son’s tears reflect Spurs’ disappointment, Jürgen Klopp and Mikel Arteta rage and Marcelo Bielsa exercises caution

As Manchester City went through the gears in the first half, their play resembled the 2019 FA Cup final, a glorious 6-0 dissolution of Watford. But first-half goals never came and doubts descended. City were better than last week at Wembley when Chelsea ended hopes of a quadruple but their problems were similar. They lack a true finisher, with Sergio Agüero departing and Gabriel Jesus, who scored twice two years ago against Watford, no longer trusted by Pep Guardiola. Raheem Sterling’s poor form has also been unhelpful. A team hoping to reach the club’s first ever Champions League final when they meet PSG this week and next lack the killer instinct in attack that recent winners like Liverpool, with Mohamed Salah, and Bayern Munich, with Robert Lewandowski, could lean on. Patience and quality eventually told but Guardiola would surely rather not rely on set-piece headers from defenders to win matches that should have been out of sight. John Brewin

Match report: Manchester City 1-0 Tottenham

Match report: Liverpool 1-1 Newcastle

Match report: Leeds 0-0 Manchester United

Match report: Arsenal 0-1 Everton

Match report: West Ham 0-1 Chelsea

Match report: Sheffield United 1-0 Brighton

Match report: Wolves 0-4 Burnley

Match report: Aston Villa 2-2 West Brom

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Leeds United 0-0 Manchester United: Premier League – as it happened

Sun, 04/25/2021 - 16:25

It was the bore of the roses at Elland Road as Leeds United and Manchester United played out a match that somehow smelled goalless from the off

4.25pm BST

And with that, I’m off. Do follow our ongoing liveblogs here:

Related: Manchester City v Tottenham Hotspur: Carabao Cup final – live!

Related: Bayern Munich v Chelsea: Women’s Champions League semi final, first leg!

Related: Maguire takes out frustration on Fred in Manchester United’s draw at Leeds

4.21pm BST

Here’s Jamie Jackson’s match report from Elland Road:

Manchester United are now 12 points ahead of West Ham in fifth place with only 15 left to play for so a Champions League berth is near to being secured for Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s side. This and Harry Maguire handing Fred a colourful roasting (invective was used) with 72 minutes gone are the headlines from a goalless draw that was a tale of each United - Leeds were profligate, too - suffering from malfunctioning radar.

Fred being given a telling off by his captain was a telling sign of the visitors’ frustration: they had enough chances to finish Marcelo Bielsa’s team off but in Dan James, Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood had a frontline whose shooting boots lacked potency.

Related: Maguire takes out frustration on Fred in Manchester United’s draw at Leeds

4.20pm BST

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has a chat. He seems pretty chirpy, all things considered:

There’s no guarantees in football, that’s for sure. I thought we played well. Especially second half I thought we dominated. We didn’t give any chances away, but the ball didn’t fall for us in a decent way. You know, when two teams meet you create problems, you solve problems, the opposition give you things to think about. We made them adjust to us and we had to adjust to them, because of course they are a unique team. I’ve seen Leeds so many times run over teams second half, and I thought it was the opposite with us.

Seriously I thought up until the last 18 yards, that’s where the decisions let us down. Of course we’re disappointed we didn’t get three points, but the boys know they put a shift down, they’ve got a lot of respect for the way Leeds play, and this isn’t something we’re going to look back as derailing our season.

4.08pm BST

Let’s hope the Carabao Cup final has a bit more entertainment for Rob Smyth to describe:

Related: Manchester City v Tottenham Hotspur: Carabao Cup final – live!

4.03pm BST

Harry Maguire thinks his team should have won:

I think we created some good chances, enough to score. But we didn’t create enough. We knew how they were going to play. We kept them to a minimum, I felt defensively we were good and solid, but we just couldn’t find the cutting edge. The tempo was there, the intensity was there, it just lacked a little bit of quality and putting the ball in the back of the net. I felt like we had control of the game, without hurting them enough.

It’s a big week. We need to improve on today for sure, we need to be more clinical in the final third. We’ve got to go into it full of confidence, and try to improve on what we did today.

3.58pm BST

Bore of the roses.

3.53pm BST

90+4 mins: The referee’s assistant raised the board to indicate the chosen amount of stoppage time about 25 seconds early, and the referee now ends the game about 25 seconds early. Either his watch was broken, or he was a bit bored.

3.50pm BST

90+2 mins: Manchester are pushing for a goal, in a half-hearted way. Shaw’s corner is poor, and Meslier catches. Meanwhile, the pass of the match award goes to:

Look away now, Luke Ayling

That one tickled @Carra23

Watch on Sky Sports PL
Follow #LEEMUN here: https://t.co/2dMWXQDkx5
Download the @SkySports app! pic.twitter.com/v7qokeERiX

3.48pm BST

90+1 mins: There will be four minutes of stoppage time.

3.47pm BST

90 mins: Cavani tries to lay the ball back to Greenwood, but his touch is too soft, and allows a defender to throw their foot in the way of the shot.

3.46pm BST

89 mins: Van der Beek comes on now, replacing Fred.

3.45pm BST

87 mins: “This game’s been awful hasn’t it, the quality? Jesus,” moans Jamie Carragher on Sky. This is not entirely true - there were approximately four entertaining minutes earlier in this half.

3.43pm BST

86 mins: Rashford has been displaced off the pitch entirely, with Cavani taking his place.

3.41pm BST

83 mins: Rashford is now in the middle, which seems a sensible place for him to be, with Pogba based on the left. Cavani is about to come on, though, which might displace Rashford again.

3.39pm BST

81 mins: Good work from Greenwood in the area, twisting and turning in search of space, but also good work from Leeds, who have four players around him, somehow avoid fouling him - though Klich comes very close - and end up conceding only a corner, which they clear.

3.38pm BST

79 mins: A fine nutmeg from Rashford on Alioski. It achieves nothing, with Struijk coming across to take the ball before the Manchester man can run back onto it, but it must have given him a great deal of pleasure.

3.34pm BST

76 mins: While Leeds bring Robin Koch on for Roberts.

3.33pm BST

76 mins: Manchester’s first substitution bring Paul Pogba onto the field, with James departing.

3.33pm BST

75 mins: Henderson makes two saves in 30 seconds! The first comes when Bamford plays Klich in on the right, and he cuts onto his left foot but shoots a bit timidly, and Henderson catches. Then Phillips sends a long-ranger at the keeper from 25 yards or so.

3.32pm BST

74 mins: Leeds are alleging some form of GBH by Wan-Bissaka on Helder Costa:

After being suplexed by Wan Bissaka and taking an injury to his back, Costa is replaced Klich. 0-0 pic.twitter.com/GPlpcPDxTp

3.29pm BST

72 mins: Helder Costa goes down in midfield, and after a bit of physio attention he limps gingerly from the field. Klich is his replacement.

3.28pm BST

70 mins: Bamford dribbles the ball out of play in Leeds’ left-back position, and is so annoyed about it he picks the ball up and boots it into the stands. He, too, is booked.

3.26pm BST

68 mins: Leeds make the day’s first substitution, bringing Poveda on for Harrison.

3.25pm BST

67 mins: Maguire thunders into Roberts, the ball long gone, and is booked.

3.22pm BST

64 mins: The corner is cleared to Rashford, and Alioski stops him breaking by deliberately pushing out his bum. The referee gives him no credit for this enterprising fouling, and books him.

3.21pm BST

63 mins: Then Leeds go close, as Helder Costa’s deflected shot loops just over the bar!

3.20pm BST

62 mins: Another great chance! The ball is played down the right for Rashford, who passes infield to James, who is just settling himself before guiding the ball home when Alioski appears from behind and gets a toe to it.

3.19pm BST

60 mins: Greenwood runs behind Struijk onto the through-ball and sends in a low, hard shot that Meslier saves at the near post. It’s starting to look not inconceivable that somebody might score soon.

3.15pm BST

56 mins: Chance! Probably the best in the match! Wan-Bissaka does well on the right, taking the ball around Helder Costa like he’s a traffic cone in a training exercise and then passing back for Fernandes, who perhaps distracted by Struijk throwing himself at the ball scuffs his shot and it bobbles wide.

3.12pm BST

53 mins: Leeds have a spell. Dallas chips the ball to Helder Costa inside the area, whose low cross flies across the face of goal.

3.07pm BST

49 mins: Greenwood plays a lovely ball through to Fernandes and/or James. James gets it first, but his first touch takes it towards Fernandes. He leaves it to the Portuguese, who leaves it right back again, and instead of Manchester having a player running clean through for a shot on goal Leeds are allowed to intercept.

3.04pm BST

46 mins: There were two balls on the pitch when Leeds kicked off, so the referee stops play with the ball at the feet of Llorente, runs over, picks the ball off his toe, drops it back onto his toe again, and play continues.

3.02pm BST

46 mins: Peeeeeep! The teams are back out and already playing!

3.00pm BST

The one real talking point from that first half is the Luke Shaw handball, which to me falls firmly into the seen-them-given-but-I’d-rather-they-weren’t territory.

Thoughts? pic.twitter.com/TQxWdDd8xF

2.47pm BST

45+2 mins: A quite determinedly goalless half ends, goalless.

2.46pm BST

45+1 mins: Maguire pretty much stands still as the corner comes in, and his marker runs away towards the six-yard box, leaving Maguire with a completely free header from 10 yards. It floats over the bar.

2.46pm BST

45 mins: Save! Rashford’s free-kick is hit at pace and is dipping under the bar, but it’s nowhere near the corner and Meslier manages to get a hand on it.

2.45pm BST

44 mins: Struijk brings James down, 25 yards out. Leeds really do seem quite keen on conceding free-kicks around their penalty area.

2.42pm BST

41 mins: Lindelof plays an awkward bouncing pass back to Henderson, but instead of roaring into the keeper Harrison stops, with Wan-Bissaka getting in his way, and the ball is cleared.

2.40pm BST

40 mins: ... which Shaw curls over everybody and out of play.

2.40pm BST

39 mins: Another booking, Roberts this time fouling Greenwood. Manchester enjoy the novel situation of preparing for a set-piece from the right.

2.38pm BST

38 mins: Yet another left-wing free-kick for Manchester. This time Fernandes shoots, but Bamford heads it over the bar.

2.37pm BST

36 mins: Maguire hits the ball down the left for Rashford, who is absolutely wiped out by Ayling, who stumbled at full sprint and went flying into the Manchester forward’s legs and is booked for his troubles.

2.35pm BST

34 mins: Phillips steals the ball from Fernandes after a defensive throw-in and passes infield to Dallas, whose 20-yarder flies into Henderson’s arms. A second shot on target, though.

2.34pm BST

33 mins: There has been one shot on target so far, and the game just feels stodgy. It doesn’t feel like a goal is imminent, unless through terrible defensive error.

2.31pm BST

31 mins: Fernandes is fouled a couple of yards outside the Leeds penalty area, gets up and boots the free-kick well over the bar.

2.30pm BST

28 mins: Lindelof gives the ball away in his own half but Dallas comes to the rescue, biffing a pass straight out of play on the left.

2.26pm BST

25 mins: Fernandes finds space on the right of the area, but his pull-back to Greenwood is overhit and he can’t bring it under control.

2.24pm BST

24 mins: Another left-wing free-kick for Manchester. This time Shaw takes, and Ayling clears.

2.22pm BST

21 mins: Leeds keep the pressure on, and keep the ball in the Manchester half for a while, before Ayling’s low cross is cleared.

2.21pm BST

19 mins: Harrison brings the ball to the edge of the Manchester area before crossing towards Bamford in the middle - Helder Costa was all alone on the right, a much better target. The ball though goes just behind Bamford and hits Shaw’s left arm. VAR has a look at it, and isn’t inclined to get involved.

2.17pm BST

15 mins: Manchester have been on the front foot for most of the game. They’re still in search of their first decent effort on goal, but all signs suggest it is coming.

2.13pm BST

12 mins: And it leads to another chance! It bounces through to Maguire, who seems astonished that it does so and entirely unprepared for it, and the ball bounces off his thigh and over.

2.12pm BST

10 mins: Rashford wins a free-kick on the left, only a few yards from the spot from which Fernandes sent the ball in for Greenwood’s early effort.

2.08pm BST

7 mins: Rashford gets a shooting chance after running onto a long hoik from defence, but his first touch is imperfect and forces him wide, and the shot on the spin is mishit and bumbles wide.

2.06pm BST

4 mins: Disappointing lack of goals so far. Manchester were 2-0 up by now when the teams met at Old Trafford.

2.02pm BST

2 mins: An early chance, but Greenwood’s header from Fernandes’s free-kick was weak, and really from too far out to threaten goal unless seriously brilliant.

2.00pm BST

1 min: Peeeeep! Manchester get the ball rolling.

2.00pm BST

I will be referring to Manchester United as Manchester for the remainder of this liveblog. Leeds will be Leeds. Obviously, they are both United. Right, let’s do this.

1.57pm BST

The teams are on their way out! Football imminent!

1.41pm BST

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has a chat:

It’s a unique game. They’re the fittest team in the league. You get tested to the limit, mentally, physically and tactically. You’ve got to be concentrated, you’ve got to have your heads and your hearts out there, and your lungs will be tested. We have four massive games coming up. You’ve got to have maximum energy in all of them. Today we went with Dan James, and it’ll be a different selection maybe on Thursday. His pace, his workrate and attitude, he’s had a good season. He had a spell last season and early this season when he doubted himself. He’s back on track again.

1.38pm BST

Cool and breezy in Leeds today, apparently. Looks alright from here.

1.10pm BST

I asked Opta when United last had 14 shots on target and the answer ... drumroll please ... was against Southampton in February. Which makes the statistic I used in my preamble not just less exciting than I imagined, but really extremely incorrect.

1.05pm BST

The teams have been named, and here are the names:

Leeds: Meslier, Ayling, Llorente, Struijk, Alioski, Phillips, Helder Costa, Dallas, Roberts, Harrison, Bamford. Subs: Koch, Poveda-Ocampo, Casilla, Hernandez, Berardi, Summerville, Greenwood, Klich, Shackleton.
Man Utd: Henderson, Wan Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw, McTominay, Fred, Greenwood, Bruno Fernandes, James, Rashford. Subs: de Gea, Bailly, Pogba, Cavani, Mata, Alex Telles, Matic, van de Beek, Tuanzebe.
Referee: Craig Pawson.

Marcelo names an unchanged side to the one that drew against Liverpool, but Summerville and Greenwood feature on the bench

It's time for team news...

#MUFC
#⃣ #LEEMUN

12.56pm BST

Leeds have had some bonkers results this season. They have won 4-3, 5-2 and 5-0, lost 4-1, 4-2 and 4-3, but the 6-2 defeat away at Manchester United has to stand at the top of the pile. Scott McTominay, who has scored in only three league games this season, had a brace by the third minute. It was 4-1 by half-time. Manchester United had 14 shots on target, not just the most they have had in a single game this season but the most they have had since 2013-14, when the website I was checking it on stopped being able to give me the appropriate statistics. “We lacked efficiency; they scored their opportunities and we didn’t,” said Marcelo Bielsa, even though his side scored 50% of their shots on target and United just 43%. It was wildly entertaining from first to last. Rob Smyth, on MBM duties that day, described it as “a glorious slugfest” that “was so much fun, too much fun almost”.

Another one like that, please! Thanks!

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Categories: What the papers say

Maguire takes out frustration on Fred in Manchester United’s draw at Leeds

Sun, 04/25/2021 - 16:13

Manchester United are now 12 points ahead of West Ham in fifth place with only 15 left to play for so a Champions League berth is near to being secured for Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s side. This and Harry Maguire handing Fred a colourful roasting (invective was used) with 72 minutes gone are the headlines from a goalless draw that was a tale of each United - Leeds were profligate, too - suffering from malfunctioning radar.

Fred being given a telling off by his captain was a telling sign of the visitors’ frustration: they had enough chances to finish Marcelo Bielsa’s team off but in Dan James, Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood had a frontline whose shooting boots lacked potency.

Related: Leeds United v Manchester United: Premier League – live!

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Categories: What the papers say

‘Just relegate them’: Fans discuss England’s ‘big six’ after the ESL farce

Sun, 04/25/2021 - 08:00

Fans from all 20 Premier League clubs assess an astonishing week. How did it come to this? And what should happen next?

I always feared there’d come a time when we’d really regret flogging off this country’s footballing crown jewels, and Spurs, to owners with no grasp of our risk-and-reward pyramid format. And here we are. The ESL closed-shop plan may have gone for now, but in the absence of real governmental intervention, it’ll be back. For us Gooners, it’s all felt like the latest step in a barefaced betrayal – one that began with leaving Highbury and was made worse by our absentee landlord’s purchase of the meagre proportion of shares still in private hands. The result is fans feeling like nothing more than an anonymous revenue stream for our sterile new ground.

Related: Pérez says Super League clubs ‘cannot leave’ as Manchester United fans protest

Related: Punish Super League clubs for breakaway, say 60% of fans

Related: English fans’ ESL mobilisation in contrast to resignation in Europe | Ed Aarons

Related: Super League shows why the deliberate ‘stupidising’ of sport must be resisted | Barney Ronay

Related: How JP Morgan and Jamie Dimon scored a spectacular own goal on the ESL

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Categories: What the papers say

Solskjær: Glazers have ‘job on their hands’ to unify Manchester United

Sat, 04/24/2021 - 22:30
  • Manchester United manager wants club to ‘work together’
  • Solskjær calls for player consultation over future changes

Ole Gunnar Solskjær wants Manchester United to be unified following the European Super League fiasco but the manager admits the owners, the Glazer family, have a “job on their hands”.

United’s membership of the now defunct ESL caused further fury among a fanbase who already strongly dislike the club’s American owners. Joel Glazer was to be one of the ESL’s most senior figures, as a vice-chairman. After United performed a U-turn and dropped out of the competition, he apologised to fans in an open letter.

Related: Manchester United’s Katie Zelem: ‘Italy changed me as a player – and a person’

Related: European Super League: ‘Nobody is safe from these billionaires’

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Categories: What the papers say

European Super League: fans call for owners to go after failed breakaway – video

Sat, 04/24/2021 - 19:22

Hundreds of Manchester United fans gathered outside Old Trafford to protest against the club’s American owners on Saturday, following the failed attempt to form a breakaway European Super League.

The protests followed similar actions by fans of other clubs that signed up to join the league: Liverpool supporters protested outside Anfield, thousands of Arsenal fans gathered outside the Emirates on Friday, and Chelsea fans demonstrated outside Stamford Bridge earlier this week.

Proposals for a partially closed competition involving 12 of Europe’s top clubs in England, Spain and Italy collapsed on 21 April when most of the founders pulled out in the face of a fierce backlash.

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Pérez says Super League clubs ‘cannot leave’ as Manchester United fans protest

Sat, 04/24/2021 - 16:45
  • Real Madrid president: ‘this project will move forward’
  • United fans’ ‘Glazers Out’ banners demand owners quit

The Real Madrid president, Florentino Pérez, said the 12 clubs announced last week as founders of the European Super League cannot abandon it due to binding contracts and promised the project would return soon.

Related: English fans’ ESL mobilisation in contrast to resignation in Europe | Ed Aarons

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Leeds v Manchester United: match preview

Sat, 04/24/2021 - 09:00

In normal times Manchester United fans would be streaming east over the Pennines for this one. Instead there will be no scarves flapping from the windows of countless cars traversing the M62, no good humoured queues at Hartshead Moor services and no intense hostility between home and away supporters at Elland Road. If ever a fixture highlighted what football has lost since necessarily being moved behind closed doors it is this one. “A classic game,” as Marcelo Bielsa put it. The Leeds manager will be keen to atone for his side’s 6-2 reverse at Old Trafford earlier in the season but must cope without the injured Raphinha and Rodrigo and the suspended Liam Cooper. Edinson Cavani will doubtless fancy his chances of scoring a goal or two for Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s side. Louise Taylor

Sunday 2pm Sky Sports Premier League

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Manchester United’s Ed Woodward got one day’s notice of Super League launch

Fri, 04/23/2021 - 11:16
  • Executive vice-chairman not part of final discussions
  • He resigned after deciding he could not support project

Ed Woodward became aware of the European Super League’s launch only a day before its announcement, with Manchester United’s executive vice-chairman not part of that aspect of the decision-making process, the Guardian understands.

Woodward, a European Club Association board member until the start of this week, was not kept abreast of developments in the final days before the controversial project was confirmed on Sunday with United’s co-chairman Joel Glazer as one of its most senior figures.

Related: Ed Woodward’s Manchester United legacy is chequered but title is in sight again

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