What the papers say

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Read the latest Manchester United news, transfer rumours, match reports, fixtures and live scores from the Guardian
Updated: 1 hour 43 min ago

Premier League 2018-19 fans’ verdicts. Part two: Leicester to Wolves

Sun, 05/12/2019 - 09:00

Fans review the season with one game to play – the stars, the flops and the moments that made them smile

Part 1: Arsenal to Huddersfield

I think “all’s well that ends well” is a good enough way to sum up Leicester’s season. Try as he might Claude Puel’s footballing revolution never really caught on but thankfully we’ve found a better fit in Brendan Rodgers. There’s a sense of optimism on Filbert Way again. 7/10

Related: The revolution will be televised: as the season ends, the age of VAR is nigh | Sachin Nakrani

Related: If Liverpool’s brilliance falls short, when will relentless City be caught? | Daniel Taylor

Related: Premier League’s freakish finale leaves no margin for error | Jonathan Wilson

Related: Ander Herrera confirms decision to leave Manchester United

Related: Spurs ready for final after watching Liverpool and dancing to Oasis

Related: From Anfield ‘89 to Agüero in 2012: five other final-day title finishes | Stuart James

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Ander Herrera confirms decision to leave Manchester United

Sat, 05/11/2019 - 13:51
  • Midfielder expected to join PSG in the summer
  • ‘Sometimes the timing is just not right and you have to move on’

Ander Herrera has described choosing to leave Manchester United as a difficult decision but one he does not want to dwell on.

The Spanish midfielder confirmed his expected departure on Saturday, bringing to an end five years at Old Trafford. The 29-year-old’s deal expires at the end of the season and he is believed to have committed to Paris St Germain over another option.

Related: Premier League’s freakish finale leaves no margin for error | Jonathan Wilson

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From Anfield ‘89 to Agüero in 2012: five other final-day title finishes | Stuart James

Sat, 05/11/2019 - 08:30

As Manchester City and Liverpool gear up for the Premier League finale, five previous last-day title winners relive the tension and the euphoria of their big triumphs

State of play going into the final day Derby were top but played their last league game a week before Leeds and Liverpool, their closest challengers, finished their fixtures. Leeds needed a draw at Wolves to be champions, and Liverpool needed to beat Arsenal at Highbury.

Related: Manchester City will be ‘destroyed’ if they fail to retain title, says Guardiola

Related: Jürgen Klopp confident pain can lead to gain for defiant Liverpool in title race

Related: Premier League: 10 things to look out for on the final day

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Manchester United v Cardiff: match preview

Fri, 05/10/2019 - 17:17

Another disappointing season ends with Manchester United needing to beat already-relegated Cardiff while hoping Arsenal fail to win. In this scenario Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s side will finish fifth and so enter the Europa League group phase in September rather than in a preliminary round, maybe as early as late July. This all illustrates how far United have fallen and what a long way back it is for the club. Jamie Jackson

Sunday 3pm

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Premier League: 10 things to look out for on the final day

Fri, 05/10/2019 - 08:14

Liverpool seek another miracle as relentless City close on title, changing of the guard at Leicester and a Zaha swansong?

Brighton are the 17th best team in the league, are already safe and can at best move up one place; Manchester City are the best team in the land and desperately need victory to seal the title. There is a massive disparity both of ability and motivation here. “They’re fighting for the Premier League and are going to do their utmost to do it,” said Lewis Dunk. “We’re just going out as professional footballers to win a game as you would do every week.” This should make this the single most predictable game of the week, and in all likelihood it will be, but still there must be some doubt. People have argued that the profusion of English clubs in major European finals this season proves that this, as many have always insisted, is the greatest league in the world, but Brighton would produce an argument much more compelling than the achievements of the elite if this limited team, a couple of hours from an extended holiday and with no obvious motivation, could nevertheless produce a performance good enough to change the destination of the title. SB

Related: Miracles, plot twists and last-day drama to come – what a week of football | Eni Aluko

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Football transfer rumours: Anthony Martial to leave Manchester United?

Tue, 05/07/2019 - 08:55

Today’s rumours need a strawberry

Remember when Manchester United trumpeted the £36m – rising to £58.8m – signing of Anthony Martial in 2015? It made the forward, then 19, Britain’s most expensive teenage player and it seemed the start of a bright new dawn in which a fresh, forward-thinking United went about their business with ambition and vigour. Well, about that, Martial is for the chop, according to reports, with Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s decision to omit him from the debacle at Huddersfield a precursor to his offloading this summer. Martial’s “relaxed” attitude to the pre-match warm-up at Chelsea last week is among the things to have enraged his manager. Who would take him, though, and at what price?

Perhaps United might fancy going in for Gareth Bale, who has been told in no uncertain terms by Zinedine Zidane that Real Madrid no longer require him, which is some gratitude for last season’s Champions League final heroics. Rather awkwardly, Bale doesn’t want to leave. Who wins? Florentino Pérez decides, at a wild guess. One man who won’t be heading to Old Trafford is the totemic young Ajax captain Matthijs De Ligt, who has rejected their overtures and is thought to be keener on a move to Barcelona for some reason.

Related: Pep Guardiola says Liverpool play with no pressure as City reclaim top spot

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The Dozen: the weekend's best Premier League photos

Mon, 05/06/2019 - 20:42

The best photos from around the grounds chosen by our picture editors

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Manchester United’s top four failure just not good enough, admits Young

Mon, 05/06/2019 - 14:40
• Captain expresses disappointment at Huddersfield draw
• Young says United must bounce back next season

Manchester United captain Ashley Young has admitted failing to beat Huddersfield and missing out on Champions League qualification is “just not good enough”.

A club synonymous with success and silverware continue to stumble, with the Old Trafford giants rudderless behind the scenes and a shell of their former selves on the pitch. Their issues were plain to see on Sunday as Huddersfield, relegated five weeks earlier, managed to cancel out Scott McTominay’s early goal and seal a memorable 1-1 draw through Isaac Mbenza.

Related: Premier League: 10 talking points from the weekend’s action

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Premier League: 10 talking points from the weekend’s action

Mon, 05/06/2019 - 08:59

Brighton were rewarded for their assertiveness and defence against Arsenal, Crystal Palace continued to do well away from home while Everton’s Phil Jagielka deserves a fitting farewell

Manchester United have suffered their share of indignities already this season but now they will have to start supporting Manchester City in the FA Cup final. A tame draw at Huddersfield finally ended Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s slim hopes of a creeping into the Champions League, but Watford winning the FA Cup and United finishing sixth would bring forward the latter’s Europa League involvement with a qualifying round on 25 July. That will lead to some rescheduling as United are supposed to be in Shanghai then for a meeting with Spurs in the International Champions Cup. Solskjær spoke of the positives Arsenal and Chelsea have drawn from the Europa League this season, but United did all that two years ago when they beat Ajax in the final. Wonder where Ajax are now? United have gone a long way backwards since finishing second last year. Paul Wilson

Related: Will the sun ever set on rift between Graeme Souness and Liverpool? | Daniel Taylor

Related: Liverpool ride their luck but game of fine margins remains wide open | Louise Taylor

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'The table seldom lies', says Ole Gunnar Solskjær as Manchester United miss out on top four – video

Sun, 05/05/2019 - 19:17

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjær has admitted his side can have no complaints about finishing outside the Premier League's top four.

After a lacklustre 1-1 draw at the bottom club, Huddersfield Town, on Sunday it was confirmed that United will not play in next season's Champions League, with Solskjær adding: 'Europa League is probably the right place for us.'

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Ole Gunnar Solskjær: ‘We didn’t perform to the required level’

Sun, 05/05/2019 - 17:44

• Manager said United had been inconsistent over the season
• Solskjær was disappointed at missing out on Champions League

Ole Gunnar Solskjær put a brave face on Manchester United’s latest disappointment, but accepted his side had not been good enough to put away chances against a dispirited and disorganised Huddersfield that would have kept hopes of a Champions League finish alive.

Related: Huddersfield’s Isaac Mbenza levels to kill Manchester United’s top-four hopes

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Huddersfield’s Mbenza levels to kill off Manchester United’s top-four hopes

Sun, 05/05/2019 - 16:11

Manchester United’s slender hopes of a top-four finish were ended in shambolic fashion when they surrendered an early lead to relegated Huddersfield, allowing the club marooned at the bottom of the table with 14 points to claim a wholly unexpected 15th that will alter the nature of Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s summer.

Not that much has gone for the Terriers in their two-season stay in the Premier League, but at least the side that shares the early relegation record with Derby County can take pride in taking four points off Manchester United in two league meetings at the John Smith’s Stadium. Huddersfield won this fixture last season, and despite a dreadful start to this game they had their chances in the second half to cause a similar shock.

Related: Huddersfield Town v Manchester United: Premier League – live!

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Categories: What the papers say

Huddersfield Town v Manchester United: Premier League – live!

Sun, 05/05/2019 - 15:52

3.52pm BST

90+4 min: Pogba shoots, slips and the result is certainly not respectable. Solskjaer sits impassively, then leaps to his feet. Lossl takes an age over the goal kick and is booked. Neville laments, quite rightly, how United simply let this game drift for an hour.

3.50pm BST

90+3 min: United have five minutes to be in with a shout of keeping their season respectable ...

3.48pm BST

90+1 min: Huddersfield bring on Diakhaby for the scorer, Mbenza, whose goal was his first of the season. We will see EIGHT added minutes here.

3.46pm BST

89 min: Chong could win it! He looks well offside as Rashford slides him through – and a replay shows he indeed was – and drives into the box before Lossl tips his angled shot away. Then Pogba clatters one against the bar from 18 yards moments later! It’s the second time he’s hit the frame! And *then* Huddersfield break and De Gea saves again with his legs from Grant. Suddenly it’s all happening at the death!

3.44pm BST

87 min: Still, United will have some big social media engagement figures after this. And that is what counts!

3.43pm BST

86 min: This has been so unbelievably – yet so very believably – bad from United since those first 20 minutes. These players just coast, don’t they? Where’s the energy, the fire, the resolve, the determination? These are intangibles but no successful team does without them.

3.40pm BST

83 min: Dalot replaces Lindelof. The Swede, who has played better than most of his teammates, heads down the tunnel so presumably has a knock. Ashley Young is now playing at centre-back for Manchester United.

3.39pm BST

82 min: Lossl beats away a cross-shot from Rashford. United need to build a head of steam now-ish.

3.38pm BST

80 min: But it’s Mbenza streaking away again on the right to win a corner off Jones. Lowe swings it in ... and United just about clear at the second time of asking.

3.36pm BST

79 min: It has to be a grandstand last 15 minutes or so from United now, and ultimately a win, otherwise their top-four hopes are mathematically done. Will they deign to make it exciting?

3.34pm BST

77 min: McTominay gets up groggily. It’s one of those where you just have to trust the medics to do the right thing. They’ve deemed he can continue, so he does – and the game does too.

3.32pm BST

76 min: McTominay is caught by Lossl as the keeper punches away, and seems to have a head injury. The physio comes on ...

3.31pm BST

74 min: It’s now Chelsea 3-0 Watford. Higuain has got the third.

3.30pm BST

73 min: Now Mata squares and Rashford, on the stretch, can’t get the ball on target. Have United’s players realised the gravity of the situation at last?

3.29pm BST

72 min: “Lifelong United fan here, I went to the same school as Geordie Best,” writes Philip Brennan just as Phil Jones misses a *sitter*, jabbing a low Young free kick over when totally unmarked. “I just punched the air and cheered when Huddersfield scored. I’m going back to watching Glentoran.”

I think a few people might sympathise with that. United need to remember they are a football club, double-quick.

3.27pm BST

70 min: “We’re going down!” chant the home fans. They could yet go down with a win here. United are all over the show; it’s as joyless from them as usual.

3.26pm BST

69 min: “I’d actually have more of an opinion on Woodward if he backtracked on Solskjaer and said ‘enough is enough’ and broke the bank for a top tier relevant manager. Otherwise is could be another few years and millions being wasted,” writes Paul Fitzgerald.

I just think it’s hard to have a firm view on Solskjaer at the moment. They probably firmed the appointment up too quickly but, as for his own ability to turn things around, we must remember he has inherited an absolute rabble.

3.23pm BST

66 min: It’s taking two groundstaff to assemble a corner flag at the moment. It’s not going superbly but would you have a steady hand with 24,500 people making merry around you? Now we do restart after a six-minute delay.

3.22pm BST

65 min: We are still waiting to get underway as a new flagpole is constructed. A farce that matches United’s season well. What do they have left here? They seemed to have improved a little since Herrera and Chong came on, moving the ball more slickly, but you can’t say they have not courted this.

3.20pm BST

63 min: Lossl gets an assist there, and it’s atonement for that earlier blooper. The game is delayed while we get a new corner flag – I think a jubilant Mbenza smashed it in celebrating! Meanwhile Neville murmurs: “There’s nothing to like about this United team at all. Just awful.”

3.18pm BST

Oh my! Lossl grabs that McTominay header and immediately aims a long, flat clearance upfield towards the chasing Mbenza. Shaw is the only United player back and well positioned to clear ... but completely misses the ball! Now Mbenza is through, and slides his finish under De Gea. The stadium goes wild!

3.17pm BST

60 min: Shaw wins a corner although he could maybe have picked out Chong sooner at the far post. McTominay’s downwards header is saved easily – and then ...

3.14pm BST

57 min: Then Pogba puts a better effort over from 20 yards. There are goals here if they do want them.

3.13pm BST

56 min: Ander Herrera, who replaced Matic a couple of minutes back, blasts a quite in-keeping shot well off target.

3.12pm BST

55 min: Gary Neville is going into one of his quite delicious rants about United’s lack of character, spirit, commitment. Can’t say he is wrong. A bright start here has turned into absolute nothingness, let’s be honest, and we’ve seen this film before. Tahith Chong might fancy this, though, as the youth product replaces a limping Sanchez. Will we see the Chilean in a United shirt again? I doubt it.

3.10pm BST

52 min: Huddersfield are testing United with balls over the top. They look a bit wobbly and Grant, cutting onto his left foot, curls just over the bar! No intensity from United at all at present.

3.07pm BST

50 min: David Luiz has very quickly made that 2-0. So Chelsea are heading third, and if it stayed like this United would be two points behind fourth-placed Spurs going into the final day.

3.06pm BST

49 min: Bad news for United, though, as Ruben Loftus-Cheek has turned the boos into cheers at Stamford Bridge. It’s Chelsea 1-0 Watford.

3.05pm BST

47 min: Shaw fizzes one well wide after a half-clearance from Hogg. United start on top.

3.03pm BST

United get the half started.

3.02pm BST

A Huddersfield change at the break: Smith replaces the injured Durm.

3.01pm BST

Dean Hoyle has been addressing the Terriers fans at the break. “All I am is custodian of fans’ dreams. I’ve done my bit and now it’s for somebody else to carry the weight of expectation.”

He gets one heck of an ovation, and it’s so well deserved.

2.57pm BST

Chelsea are drawing 0-0 with Watford. By all accounts they were booed off at the break. United couldn’t be the team that find a semblance of form and snatches fourth ... could they?

2.48pm BST

Huddersfield can’t make a late corner count, the whistle goes, and there we are. McTominay’s early goal, scored with plenty of help from Lossl, separates these two. United were in total control for around 25 minutes, but Huddersfield came back into it and De Gea had to make an important save from Grant. Pogba has since hit the bar and United will feel they have more goals in them – if they can summon a good, sustained period of high tempo, which hardly seems a done deal.

2.45pm BST

45+1 min: Rashford takes a blow to the head but, after some treatment, is deemed fine to continue.

2.44pm BST

44 min: Lindelof heads another Pritchard delivery from the right away. The hosts are getting joy down there ands Lindelof is having a superb half.

2.43pm BST

43 min: Siewert gets, I’d say, disproportionately unhappy about then non-award of a throw to Huddersfield, stalking outside his technical area and offering some choice words to somebody.

2.42pm BST

42 min: Pogba hits the bar! Mata loops a fine cross in and Pogba, twisting with the ball just behind him, arcs a superb header against the frame. It dribbles back off a home defender but is grabbed before it can roll across the line.

2.39pm BST

39 min: Lindelof, again, is in there in the nick of time to stop Mbenza converting a Pritchard centre. Then Jones gives away possession and it’s worked through to Grant, who is denied by a big De Gea save with his feet! United have dozed off here, big time. It happens so often.

2.36pm BST

37 min: Mata overcooks a through pass for Rashford, who is beaten to the ball by Lossl. United could do with a second goal.

2.35pm BST

36 min: It’s a good spell for the Terriers, for sure, and Lindelof does well again to stop a neat Pritchard pass sending Bacuna away.

2.33pm BST

34 min: Jones is rightly booked for taking Hogg out on the right byline. Hogg had, errrm, roasted him. Another chance for some home pressure, but McTominay lumps Mooy’s delivery away.

2.31pm BST

31 min: Now Huddersfield, who have come into this slightly, win a free-kick 30 yards out and Bacuna’s strike snicks wide off a red shirt. The corner comes to nothing but this resembles a contest now, albeit not an absorbing one.

2.29pm BST

29 min: Huddersfield put a nice little move together and Grant, in space on the right of the box, sees his cross defended bravely by Lindelof.

2.27pm BST

28 min: The bulletins from Chelsea, where it is goalless, suggest Watford are well on top and Kante has gone off injured. Hope growing for United?

2.26pm BST

26 min: Sanchez, who is playing well enough, chips towards an unmarked Pogba at the far post but it’s at an awkward height and the midfielder can do little more than keep the ball alive for a second or two before Lossl pounces.

2.25pm BST

25 min: At the other end Mata, getting on the end of a lovely United move, measures one towards the far corner but it doesn’t fade enough and a decent chance goes begging.

2.24pm BST

24 min: And now they have a shot, Mata giving away possession with a loose touch and Bacuna, who has better passing options, shooting a yard wide from 20 yards. De Gea was never too worried.

2.22pm BST

22 min: Huddersfield have their first attack – yes, really – but it comes to very little as Durm’s low cross is easily ushered away.

2.19pm BST

20 min: United, who are dominant to a ludicrous degree, win consecutive corners but Young swings the second one out of play. They’ve been wasteful with set pieces so far, although I can’t imagine they’ll be short of further opportunities to threaten.

2.18pm BST

18 min: Hogg, who likes a challenge, is punished for a heavy one on Pogba, before Kongolo slides in at the other end to prevent a United opening.

2.16pm BST

17 min: Corner to United. They could and should win this by a hatful, I think we can say that already. But not with crosses like the one Mata just provided.

2.15pm BST

15 min: Lee Mason, yer ref, awards United a free-kick much closer in now after Rashford is hauled over. Now this could be a chance for Mata. It is he who has a go, but the ball ends up floated into the wall.

2.12pm BST

12 min: Young aims a deep corner and Lindelof, about 14 yards out, looks absolutely stunned to be allowed to control it on his chest with nobody near him. Huddersfield end up winning a free-kick but their defending so far has been rank bad.

2.11pm BST

11 min: A half-chance for number two, Sanchez showing some of his old tenacity to win possession on the left byline and centre for Rashford at the near post, but Kongolo is in very smartly to stop him converting.

2.10pm BST

10 min: That was McTominay’s second goal for United. They may as well try for a few more now if they’re going to come as cheaply as that one.

2.09pm BST

That’s the start they wanted, although it’s with a lot of help from Lossl. McTominay wins a free-kick just inside his own half and it’s worked short. Eventually he receives the ball himself, via a lucky break off a defender, and takes it into the box. His low, left-footed shot is OK-ish, but Lossl really should save. But it squirts through his legs and flies in!

2.05pm BST

6 min: Sanchez is clipped by Schindler and it’s a United free-kick, a little further out than ideal shooting range although Huddersfield form a three-man wall. Rashford has a pop but it bounces harmlessly through to Lossl.

2.03pm BST

4 min: There’ll be an eye or two on Chelsea’s fortunes against Watford. I’ll try and keep you informed. Nothing at all has happened here yet.

2.02pm BST

2 min: A slow start, but a very noisy stadium that seems intent on giving Huddersfield and Hoyle a lively farewell.

2.00pm BST

Huddersfield, kicking right to left, get us going.

1.57pm BST

And the teams are out on the pitch here! It seems a bright, perky atmosphere, all things considered – so let’s hope that points to a fun afternoon in general.

1.56pm BST

Don’t forget you can keep on top of the Championship’s last knockings here with Daniel Harris. The play-off and title races are going to the wire!

Related: Championship: Derby, Middlesbrough and Bristol City's play-off battle – live!

1.52pm BST

They’ll be trotting out in a few minutes. United’s season – what’s left of it anyway – is right on the line here. Remember, realistically they have to win and preferably score a few, too ...

1.45pm BST

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on Alexis Sanchez to Sky Sports: “He's been waiting for an opportunity. He's been injured for a while & working hard to get back, so hopefully we can see a sharp Alexis with the attitude and hunger to get goals because we need goals to win the game" #MUFC

There you go ...

1.32pm BST

Huddersfield benefit from the return of Aaron Mooy, who missed the defeat at Liverpool. That was their 21st loss in 23 league games, a staggeringly bad record. It just hasn’t worked yet under Jan Siewert although he didn’t inherit a straightforward situation.

1.29pm BST

“Is it also possible the start for Alexis is one of those ‘put him in the showroom so that we can get a decent bit for him in the summer’ things?” ponders Thomas Krantz.

Possibly a bit of that too, yes. Although who’d take him currently? I’d add that the wider surprise over Sanchez’s drop-off ... errrr ... surprises me. It always looked a weird investment, I thought. His game was based so much on incredible reserve of energy, industry and dynamism. He’d also played a tremendous amount of football, year-round, for club and country. When you get to 30, it starts to tell – it’s not rocket science! I think we’re just seeing a player who is burnt out.

1.18pm BST

That start for Alexis Sanchez is his first for two months – the home win over Southampton was his last. A chance to salvage his United career from the dead? Or more of a sign that the likes of Lukaku and Martial are not much longer for Old Trafford?

1.11pm BST

Huddersfield: Lossl, Lowe, Kongolo, Schindler, Durm; Hogg, Bacuna, Mooy; Grant, Mbenza, Pritchard. Subs: Coleman, Smith, Kachunga, Diakhaby, Mounie, Stankovic, Daly.

Manchester United: De Gea; Young, Lindelof, Jones, Shaw; Matić, McTominay, Pogba; Mata, Sánchez, Rashford. Subs: Grant, Dalot, Smalling, Fred, Herrera, Pereira, Chong.

12.20pm BST

Almost there! That’ll surely be the feeling for both sets of fans here, who can’t have enjoyed this season one little bit. It has, for different reasons, become a fairly agonising slog for both – although there is just enough to keep everyone involved interested in what we have ahead ...

For Manchester United there is, quite incredibly given their recent form, still hope of a top-four spot. They are three points and a fair few goals shy of fourth-place incumbents Chelsea, who face a tougher assignment against Watford at the game time as this match, and two behind fifth-placed Arsenal with the Gunners hosting Brighton later. So it is an ask but, as we know, absolutely none of the contenders seem willing to grab this one by the horns – and it might just be that whoever can churn out two wins at this point will stumble over the line. Do United deserve that? No, not really. But then nobody really does. So they need to do the business here and see whether that keeps them in with a chance.

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I will get realistic chance to revive Manchester United, says Solskjær

Sat, 05/04/2019 - 22:30

• Manager claims it will take two or three years to catch rivals
• Norwegian insists the club can still attract elite players

Ole Gunnar Solskjær is confident Manchester United will grant him the “two or three years” he believes is needed to establish a style of play that will realistically challenge Manchester City and Liverpool.

Last season José Mourinho’s side finished second but 19 points behind City, while United were 27 points behind the champions and 26 from Liverpool at the start of this weekend. Sixth-placed United are also unlikely to claim a Champions League berth as they are three points behind Chelsea, who are fourth, and one from fifth-place Arsenal. United have failed to win a league game since 13 April and are on a run of two victories in 10 matches in all competitions.

Related: Ole Gunnar Solskjær confirms David de Gea will keep place against Huddersfield

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Huddersfield Town v Manchester United: match preview

Sat, 05/04/2019 - 09:00

The 2-1 win home win over Manchester United in October 2017 has been the highlight of Huddersfield’s two-season stint in the Premier League. They are a different team now but will try to attack United in an attempt to get a victory in their last match at the John Smith’s Stadium before their return to the Championship. But for that, they would probably need an unwitting contribution from Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s team, who should be at their best as they pursue a top-four finish. Paul Doyle

Sunday 2pm Sky Sports Premier League

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Ole Gunnar Solskjær confirms David de Gea will keep place against Huddersfield

Fri, 05/03/2019 - 11:57
• Manchester United manager says Sergio Romero is injured
• Solskjær says club can attract players without top-four finish

The Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjær has said David de Gea will not be dropped at Huddersfield despite his poor recent form – although he added that his deputy, Sergio Romero, is injured.

The 28-year-old has made a serious of high-profile blunders as talk about his future continues, with last weekend’s gaffe allowing Chelsea an equaliser in a 1-1 draw that was a blow to United’s top-four hopes.

Related: Liverpool's Naby Keïta to miss Africa Cup of Nations with Guinea – live!

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

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Categories: What the papers say

Premier League: 10 things to look out for this weekend

Fri, 05/03/2019 - 00:01

Leicester can test City but Liverpool face a challenge of their own, it’s all or nothing for Cardiff and Watford need to regroup

Following the disappointment of their reasonably heroic Champions League defeat at Barcelona, Liverpool must rouse themselves for what could be an extremely tricky Saturday evening appointment at Newcastle in which they simply cannot afford to slip up. With only two matches of the Premier League campaign remaining, anything less than a win for Liverpool would leave the door open for Manchester City to all but wrap up the title on Monday. One suspects this is a far tougher assignment than Jürgen Klopp would like so soon after a gruelling and dispiriting game at the Camp Nou and the portents are not great. Last September, a BBC study on the form of Premier League teams following midweek fixtures in Europe showed that Liverpool had won half a point less per game on on average following European fixtures over the previous five years, the worst record among their top-flight rivals. Last season alone, coming out of European games, they dropped points against Burnley, Stoke, Everton and their opponents on Saturday, Newcastle. BG

Related: Ajax, Messi, Bolton and a weekend preview – Football Weekly Extra

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

Related: The unexpected statistics of the season in the Premier League

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Kevin Breathnach: 'I was interested in figuring out why I was so pretentious'

Thu, 05/02/2019 - 14:45

Blending refined aesthetics with startling self-revelation – and a fair few lies – the Irish author’s essays offer readers a compelling puzzle

Kevin Breathnach would like to clear something up: he’s never been a professional skateboarder. Good, you might say, I never said he was. But Breathnach’s debut essay collection Tunnel Vision reveals a relationship with the truth that is dizzyingly fluid, where the problem is not only the repeated telling of lies, but also of undoing them.

“This is my opportunity – I never got to address this lie in the book,” he says; understandably, he seems to have lost track of the untruths. “I told everyone at college that I had once been a sponsored skateboarder. Ten years on, people who know me still believe it. It just travelled too fast.” Does he know why he told that lie in the first place, I ask, and he shrugs as if to say, ‘Well, why wouldn’t I?’

Related: Tunnel Vision by Kevin Breathnach review – self-lacerating honesty and lies

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Categories: What the papers say

The unexpected statistics of the season in the Premier League

Thu, 05/02/2019 - 12:30

David Luiz is king of the through ball; Phil Jones keeps the ball; and Aleksandar Mitrovic keeps missing

By Martin Laurence for WhoScored

With two weekends remaining in the Premier League, Manchester City are top of the table and Mohamed Salah is leading the scoring charts. It might feel familiar but this campaign has been nothing like last season in reality. As well as offering a two-horse title race in which both sides keep refusing to blink, it has thrown up plenty of statistical surprises. Here are a handful that sounded very unlikely before the season began, starting between the sticks.

Related: The (young) Premier League young players of the year

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Categories: What the papers say

Football transfer rumours: Portugal pair to Manchester United for £150m?

Thu, 05/02/2019 - 09:35

Today’s whispers are dozing off

Signing the next big thing from Portugal can be a tricky business. You might end up with Cristiano Ronaldo, you’ll probably end up with either another Renato Sanches or Hélder Postiga. Still though, sometimes it’s worth rolling the dice, and when you’re Ed ‘Snake Eyes’ Woodward, there’s no messing about. Bruno Fernandes, who spent years in Italy at Udinese and Sampdoria doing nothing more than OK, has been doing rather better recently at Sporting Lisbon, leading some media outlets to report that United will drop a combined £150m for the 24-year-old as well as Benfica’s young scamp, João Félix.

Related: Mesut Özil says he will definitely not be leaving Arsenal this summer

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Categories: What the papers say

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