Total Football News | All the news about Football | Page 604

Euro 2020 draw: ‘A groan and a grimace’ – When France and Germany drew Portugal

[unable to retrieve full-text content]
Watch how France manager Didier Deschamps and Germany's Joachim Low react to drawing Portugal in the Euro 2020 draw.

This news item was provided by the BBC Sport - Football website - the original link is:

Liverpool 2-1 Brighton & Hove Albion: Leaders move 11 points clear despite Alisson red card

Since start of the 2018-19 season, Liverpool have scored 29 headed goals in the Premier League - 10 more than any other team

Liverpool keeper Alisson was sent off for a blatant handball outside his penalty area as the Reds moved 11 points clear at the top of the table with victory over Brighton.

Jurgen Klopp's side were coasting to victory after two Virgil van Dijk headers from Trent Alexander-Arnold assists in the space of six first-half minutes.

But Alisson's red card - for clearly handling outside his penalty area with Brighton substitute Leandro Trossard bearing down on goal - gifted the visitors a lifeline.

Substitute keeper Adrian's first touch was to gather the ball out of his own net after Lewis Dunk's cute free-kick left the keeper - who was still organising his wall - stranded, before Liverpool's stopper saved late on from Aaron Mooy.

Earlier in the day, reigning champions Manchester City were held to a 2-2 draw at Newcastle United.

Leicester City will cut Liverpool's lead to eight points if they beat Everton on Sunday (16:30 GMT).

Liverpool do it the hard way

The win means Liverpool have equalled their longest ever unbeaten run in the top flight, having also gone 31 games without defeat between May 1987 and March 1988.

Yet this was anything but straightforward for the leaders as Alisson became the first Red keeper to be sent off in a Premier League game since fellow Brazilian Doni in 2012.

With his side 2-0 up and closing in on three points, Alisson came rushing out of his penalty area to handle the ball as Brighton attacked.

As a result, Alisson will now miss the Merseyside derby with Everton at Anfield on Wednesday.

His actions set up a nerve-wracking finale and Dunk's free-kick - an awful goal to concede from Liverpool's point of view - means Klopp's side are still without a clean sheet since 28 September.

Substitute keeper Adrian saved his side by keeping out Mooy as mid-table Brighton piled forward in search of an equaliser.

The Reds had looked like coasting to victory after Van Dijk's double, and Brighton keeper Mat Ryan made three fine saves to frustrate Roberto Firmino, twice, and Mohamed Salah.

Liverpool head into a demanding December, a month which will see the club play nine fixtures in four different competitions, with a fifth successive league win - but this was far too close for comfort.

Liverpool 2-1 Brighton: Adrian was my man of the match

Spirited Brighton give leaders a scare

Brighton slipped to 15th in the table after a third straight defeat, but there are grounds for optimism before a busy December programme after a spirited second-half performance.

In a week which saw Seagulls boss Graham Potter extend his contract to 2025, his side gave the leaders a real scare even before the hosts were reduced to 10 men.

Dunk went close from a Pascal Gross corner before popping up with his second goal in as many games, while teenage forward Aaron Connolly also showed flashes of real promise.

With his side trailing 2-0, the 19-year-old managed to create space for himself inside Liverpool's penalty area and test Alisson despite close attention from Dejan Lovren and Van Dijk.

One worry for Brighton is their defending from set-pieces as Van Dijk was allowed to dominate the aerial duels.

That will be a real concern for Potter with matches against Arsenal, Tottenham and Chelsea on the horizon.

Man of the match - Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool)

Virgil van Dijk not only scored for the first time since the opening night of the season, the Liverpool defender also ended the match with a passing accuracy of 89.8%

'Lots of positives' - what they said

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp: "It was unnecessary [for the game to be nervy at the end], of course, because we had unbelievable chances. Their keeper made some good saves.

"It was difficult this game because Brighton are a good football side. They had a lot of possession and we had to work really hard. I

"I loved that the boys were prepared to do that after a busy week."

Brighton boss Graham Potter: "There were lots of positives for us. In the first 10-15 minutes we weren't quite as aggressive and didn't have the belief we needed.

"We gave a really good account of ourselves against a top team. We are disappointed because we came away with nothing but with the performance and the effort, we could have come away with something.

"We had good chances at 2-0 down. Virgil van Dijk was so powerful in his two actions for their goals and we weren't as good. That's the reality.

"But over the 90 minutes we put so much into the game and we need to take that forward and carry on improving."

Brighton skipper Lewis Dunk: "To come here and be disappointed speaks volumes. There's so much to move forward with and at times we were excellent.

"The game was decided by the first 15 minutes, but not many teams will come here and feel like this."

Why Alexander-Arnold is the assist king - the stats

  • Since the start of last season, no player has provided more Premier League assists than Liverpool full-back Trent Alexander-Arnold (17).
  • Brighton have lost nine of their 11 away league games against Liverpool, with their only victory coming in the top flight in March 1982.
  • Brighton are without a win in their last six away Premier League games - losing each of the last four.
  • Liverpool have registered 14 consecutive home wins in the Premier League, their second longest home top-flight winning run behind a 21-game streak between January-December 1972.
  • Since the start of last season, Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk has scored more Premier League goals than any other defender (7).
  • Liverpool have scored 40 Premier League goals via set-pieces (including penalties) since August 2018, the most of any side in this period.
  • The Reds are unbeaten in each of their last 98 Premier League games at Anfield when leading at half-time since losing to Arsenal in December 2009.

What's next?

There's a busy midweek of Premier League action coming up with Liverpool hosting neighbours Everton on Wednesday (20:15 GMT), while Brighton are away at Arsenal on Thursday (20:15).

This news item was provided by the BBC Sport - Football website - the original link is:

Euro 2020 draw: England drawn against Croatia, Wales in group with Italy

England manager Gareth Southgate with his two known opponents in Group D - Croatia boss Zlatko Dalic and Czech Republic coach Jaroslav Silhavy

England have been drawn against Croatia and the Czech Republic at UEFA EURO 2020, with Wales alongside Italy, Switzerland and Turkey in Group A.

Germany will face world champions France and reigning European champions Portugal in Group F.

The winners of Scotland's play-off path, which includes Norway, Serbia and Israel, will join England in Group D.

Gareth Southgate's World Cup semi-finalists will begin their campaign against Croatia at Wembley on 14 June.

The tournament's opening game will see Italy host Turkey in Rome on 12 June.

Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland all feature in the play-offs next March, where 16 teams will compete to fill the final four places.

The tournament, which will take place in 12 cities across Europe, will be hosted across the continent for the first time to mark the 60th anniversary of the competition.

  • Group A: Italy, Switzerland, Turkey, Wales
  • Group B: Belgium, Russia, Denmark, Finland
  • Group C: Ukraine, Netherlands, Austria, Path D/A*
  • Group D: England, Croatia, Czech Republic, Path C**
  • Group E: Spain, Poland, Sweden, Path B***
  • Group F: Germany, France, Portugal, Path A/D*

*Iceland, Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary / Georgia, North Macedonia, Kosovo, Belarus

**Scotland, Israel, Norway, Serbia

***Slovakia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland

Where and when do England play?

England manager Gareth Southgate singles out Croatia as key opponents at Euro 2020

England, joint bookmakers' favourites along with France to win the tournament, will benefit from hosting all three of their group games at Wembley.

Southgate's side already knew they would be placed in Group D, with the qualified countries of the 12 host cities purposefully placed in specific groups to ensure at least two home games.

England's tournament begins against Croatia in a repeat of the 2018 World Cup semi-final, which was won by Zlatko Dalic's side.

  • Sunday 14 June: England v Croatia (Wembley)
  • Friday 19 June: England v Path C play-off winners (Wembley)
  • Tuesday 23 June: Czech Republic v England (Wembley)

If England win their group, their last-16 tie would be in Dublin against the runner-ups in a hugely competitive looking Group F - which already includes Germany, France and Portugal - with a potential quarter-final in Rome.

Should they finish second, it would be a trip to Copenhagen against the runner-ups from Group E, which features Spain, before a quarter-final in St Petersburg. There are other possibilities if they are one of the best third-place finishers.

Reacting to the draw, England manager Southgate said: "I'm never sure whether it's a good draw. We have played two of the teams before and for us to play at Wembley is something special. We are looking forward to the tournament.

"We have to accept that expectations have changed from where we were. We are very critical of ourselves. We would rather be a team that are fancied than a team with no chance."

Where and when will Wales play?

Ryan Giggs says Wales will be a match for anyone at Euro 2020

Wales, semi-finalists in 2016, land in Group A alongside 1968 winners Italy, who won all 10 of their qualification matches and conceded just four goals.

They are joined by Switzerland, winners of their qualification group, and a Turkey side that earned a win and a draw against world champions France.

Italy will play their three group games at Rome's Stadio Olimpico, with the other venue in the group being Baku's Olympic Stadium.

Guaranteed to face at least one trip to Azerbaijan or Russia prior to the draw, Wales boss Ryan Giggs will be pleased with his side's travel plans which sees them play twice in Baku before a final group match in the Italian capital.

  • Saturday 13 June: Wales v Switzerland (Baku)
  • Wednesday 17 June: Turkey v Wales (Baku)
  • Sunday 21 June: Italy v Wales (Rome)

On his side's draw, Giggs said: "Logistically looking at it, it's Baku, Baku, Rome, rather than having Rome in the middle - so for the fans it's much better. Switzerland are a good team, talented. Turkey were in a group with France and Iceland so have done well to come through that. And Italy have won every game so that will be tough.

"I'll get around and watch the players as much as I can. You hope that come June you have a group of healthy players to choose from and if we have that, we're a match for anyone. We want to take our chance, just like in 2016."

What do Scotland and Northern Ireland need to do?

Triumph in the Euro 2020 play-offs in March, and Steve Clarke's Scotland would end a 22-year wait for major tournament football.

That wait would come to an end against the Czech Republic in Glasgow on 15 June, with a trip to face England at Wembley following on Friday 19 June and a final group game at Hampden Park against Croatia four days later.

But first, Clarke's side must find a way past Israel at home on 26 March.

Succeed, and they will then face an away tie against the winner of Norway's play-off semi-final with Serbia five days later to battle for qualification.

Meanwhile, Northern Ireland are away to Bosnia-Herzegovina in their play-off semi-final, with the winner at home to the Republic of Ireland or Slovakia in the Path B final.

Saturday's draw means Spain, Sweden and Poland would await Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland in Group E should they qualify.

However, with the play-off winners not being decided until 31 March, there remains a bit of a wait yet for the final groups to be confirmed.

The most difficult group ever?

Reaction from the managers of France, Germany and Portugal to the Euro 2020 draw

World champions France, European champions Portugal and the previous World Cup winners Germany are all together with one play-off team in Group F.

This is only the second major tournament where the world champions and the European champions will have met in the group stage - after Euro 1992, when the Netherlands beat Germany.

Germany, who won the 2014 World Cup, will host their three group games in Munich, with the other matches in Budapest. If Hungary win their play-offs, they will be in the group, hosting two games.

One big boost for the trio is that four of the tournament's six third-placed teams go into the last 16.

"This is a group of death," said Germany boss Joachim Low.

"The games in Munich will be football festivals. The expectations will be quite high. For our young team, this will be a huge challenge but also a big motivation. This is the reward for winning the qualifier group."

Would England be better finishing second?

In a similar vein to the 2018 World Cup, England may well be better off finishing second in their group.

The winners of England's Group D will face the runners-up in Group F - probably Germany, France or Portugal - in Dublin.

But if England finish as runners-up, they would face the team who finish second in the group containing Spain, Poland, Sweden and possibly Northern Ireland or the Republic in Copenhagen.

However, the quarter-finalists either way are likely to be difficult - possibly Spain in St Petersburg if they win their group, or the winners of the "group of death" in Russia if they finish second.

"If you can win and be top seeds then you have to take control of your destiny," England boss Gareth Southgate told BBC Sport. "Let's hope we have the decision to make. We will take on whoever comes. Everyone will be thinking the same about playing us."

This news item was provided by the BBC Sport - Football website - the original link is:

Tottenham Hotspur 3-2 Bournemouth: Alli stars as Mourinho makes it three wins out of three

Dele Alli last scored in consecutive games for Tottenham in December 2018

Dele Alli starred as Tottenham made it three wins out of three under manager Jose Mourinho, despite a Bournemouth fightback.

The result lifts Tottenham, who secured their first back-to-back Premier League victories this season, up to fifth in the table, while the visitors drop to 12th.

Eddie Howe's side started brightly but Alli, who appears to be flourishing under Mourinho, was the catalyst for Spurs' victory.

Toby Alderweireld's raking pass created Alli's opening goal, with the England midfielder racing on to Son Heung-min's touch to tap the ball past Cherries goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale.

Alli's second came from the same source, as he superbly controlled Alderweireld's pass before holding off Jack Stacey and flicking the ball over Ramsdale.

When Moussa Sissoko added Spurs' third goal - with a close-range volley from Son's exemplary cross - the hosts appeared to be en route to an emphatic win.

However, Harry Wilson's introduction sparked the visitors into life, pulling one back with a superb free-kick.

The on-loan Liverpool midfielder reduced the arrears further six minutes into stoppage time, although it proved too little too late for the Cherries, who have now conceded 16 goals on their last five visits to Tottenham.

Jose all smiles and Alli reborn

While smiles were in short supply towards the end of Jose Mourinho's tenure at Manchester United, the Portuguese manager has started life at Tottenham with a cheerful and airy disposition.

With his proclamations of humility, celebrations with ball boys and decisions to deploy players into positions they favour, his approach has clearly had the desired effect.

His new employers have so far reaped the rewards, and this was the first time Spurs have won three consecutive matches (across all competitions) since April.

While this was far from a vintage performance overall, one player who appears to have benefitted under the new regime is Alli.

This game suggested he is not only back to his influential best as a playmaker behind Harry Kane and Son, but also as someone capable of making a considerable contribution in front of goal.

His first goal on Saturday was all about anticipation and timing, running adjacent to Son and ensuring he was on hand to deliver the simplest of finishes.

His second showcased all of his talents - running power, control, strength and the composure in front of goal to apply the deftest of touches under pressure.

While Alli was unable to register his first hat-trick for the club, it was still his first two-goal haul in a home game for Tottenham since January 2017 and ensured he received a standing ovation when he was withdrawn late on.

Same old story for Bournemouth

While Mourinho or Alli will deservedly take the acclaim, this all had a touch of deja vu for Bournemouth, who arrived in London seeking to avoid their third straight defeat.

Despite their attractive football, they once again struggled against one of the Premier League's established top-six teams.

The Cherries have managed two away victories in 26 games against Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, both Manchester clubs and Tottenham - a miserable run that could have been made all the worse by a hammering here.

Frustratingly though for the Cherries supporters, their team came to life at 3-0 down, largely due to Harry Wilson's endeavour.

The 22-year-old Wales midfielder, who was surprisingly omitted from the starting XI, signalled his intent with a shot on goal a minute after being brought on.

His trademark free-kick, which flew into the top right corner from 20 yards, ensured that no other Premier League players has scored more goals from outside the penalty area this season.

Man of the match - Dele Alli (Tottenham)

Alli had more shots and more shots on target than any other player

'Alli has been phenomenal' - what they said

Jose Mourinho speaking to Match of the Day: "I think it was in our best period when we scored the third goal. We were close to scoring the fourth and then when they scored the first one it was a different game.

"The boys felt a bit tired after playing a high intensity game, but we had the chance to score the fourth goal, but then in the Premier League the game is always alive. We played well for long periods of the game, we had a few scary moments but I think the fans enjoyed it. We scored seven goals in four days."

On Dele Alli: "He plays in a position where he feels happy and comfortable. We also give him space for his creativity, which he always has. I think he played three phenomenal matches since I arrived."

On the fans' reception: "The fans love the club. I'm not saying they love me but they accept me as a top professional who wants to give everything for the club.

"People have more reasons to love me if they like my work, but the fans are behind the team and they see us working hard to get to a position in the table that is more suitable to the talent of this squad."

Eddie Howe speaking to Match of the Day: "We felt it was a close game all the way through. I think we played OK today but the disappointing thing is to concede two goals from long balls. That killed us.

"We should have dealt with them better. These are not the type of goals you expect to concede coming here.

"Harry Wilson is a goalscorer, and we had other moments during the game. It is just a shame we were coming back from 3-0 down. In this league if you're not quite where you need to be you can get punished."

Sissoko ends goal drought - the stats

  • Tottenham have registered back-to-back Premier League wins for the first time this season, last doing so in April.
  • Bournemouth have lost three consecutive Premier League games for the first time since December 2018 (a run of four).
  • Tottenham conceded 20 shots against Bournemouth, last conceding more at home in a Premier League game in September 2015 against Manchester City (22).
  • Dele Alli has been directly involved in three goals in his two Premier League games for Tottenham under Jose Mourinho (2 goals, 1 assist), as many as he managed in his last 12 under Mauricio Pochettino.
  • Son Heung-Min has registered 71 Premier League goal involvements (46 goals, 25 assists), 31 more than any other Asian player (Park Ji-Sung on 40).
  • Moussa Sissoko scored for the first time in 69 Premier League appearances for Tottenham - since netting against Huddersfield in September 2017.
  • No player has scored more goals from outside the box (3, level with James Maddison) or from direct free-kicks (2, level with Riyad Mahrez) in the Premier League this season than Bournemouth's Harry Wilson.
  • Since the start of last season, Bournemouth's Jefferson Lerma has picked up 18 yellow cards in the Premier League, more than any other player.

What's next?

Tottenham travel to Old Trafford to face Manchester United in the Premier League on Wednesday 4 December (19:30 GMT). Bournemouth visit Crystal Palace, also in the Premier League, on Tuesday 3 December (19:30 GMT).

This news item was provided by the BBC Sport - Football website - the original link is:

West Ham supporters sing homophobic chants towards Chelsea fans

West Ham supporters were heard consistently singing homophobic chants towards Chelsea supporters in their 1-0 win at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.

“Chelsea rent boys” could be heard clearly throughout Saturday’s game, which has seen football’s anti-discrimination organisation Kick It Out urge supporters to report instances of homophobic chants.

The chants come on the week of the Rainbow Laces Day campaign, designed to promote LGBT+ inclusion in the sport.

Kick It Out tweeted: “If you were at the Chelsea vs West Ham game and heard homophobic chanting please directly report it to @KickItOutReport.”

It is the latest example of Chelsea fans having homophobic chants directed at them, with Kick It Out previously calling for action after Liverpool supporters were also heard singing “Chelsea rent boys” last April. 

“We are absolutely clear: the ‘rent boy’ chant is homophobic and must be treated as such,” read their statement at the time.

“The ‘rent boy’ chants have been directed at Chelsea for years, with little action taken by The FA or police – and that must not continue.

“We expect stronger condemnation and appropriate sanctions. just as we would for any other form of discrimination.”

This news item was provided by the The Independent - Premier League website - the original link is: