Lovren ends Liverpool run

first_imgSouthampton’s match-winner Dejan Lovren had more than one reason to smile as he left Anfield having scored the only goal and escaped with not conceding a penalty. That incident aside, however, Liverpool did not create nearly enough chances for a team who began the day top of the table. On this evidence the return of the watching Luis Suarez, sitting out the final match of his 10-match ban, has come not a moment too soon. Rodgers’ sprang a surprise in his line-up by experimenting in defence by selecting four centre-halves – arguably the strongest area of his squad – after naming Kolo Toure on the right and Mamadou Sakho on the left either side of the returning Daniel Agger and Martin Skrtel. Neither options at full-back looked a success in the first half, failing to supplement their defensive duties with anything approaching the usual attacking roles expected of that position. Saints’ right-back Nathaniel Clyde got forward more than the pair of them in 45 minutes in which his side did not have the majority of possession but were not afraid to commit men to attack. Sakho, on only his second appearance after a less-than-convincing outing in central defence in the 2-2 draw at Swansea on Monday, is seen as the long-term option in the middle but being broken in at left-back seemed almost like the Reds boss was accommodating the £16million signing from Paris St Germain for the sake of it. The watching Jamie Carragher, who patrolled central defence so brilliantly for so many years for Liverpool before his retirement last season, will no doubt have left with plenty of ammunition for his new role as a television analyst. Sat close to Carragher was Suarez, enduring his last punishment for biting Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic in April. The Croatia international struck in the 54th minute to end Liverpool’s 12-match unbeaten league run spanning this season and last. However, the Saints – the last team to defeat the Reds in March – may not have won 1-0 had referee Neil Swarbrick had the benefit of television replays which showed the defender had brought down Daniel Sturridge in the first half. He looks set to return for the midweek Capital One Cup tie at Manchester United so this was Iago Aspas’ last real chance to impress following his summer move from Celta Vigo. The Spaniard scored 12 goals last season but has yet to score in five league games for his new club and the fact he lasted only 45 minutes told its own tale. Liverpool created two real chances in the first half in addition to the penalty shout, a paltry return by anyone’s standards. Goalkeeper Artur Boruc’s brilliant one-handed save denied Gerrard’s curling free-kick after Aspas had been fouled by Jose Fonte before Sturridge, who after scoring in first four league matches had been unusually quiet, thought he had won a spot-kick. He cut back on the angle of the penalty area Luke Shaw and Lovren, who made contact with the striker but not the ball. Victor Moses carved out his own chance when he collected Gerrard’s throw down the left, cut in past a couple of defenders only to see Boruc turn his shot behind. Southampton had probed in the first half without properly testing goalkeeper Simon Mignolet, who created his own problems by coming for a ball Skrtel had covered and could only watch as Adam Lallana volleyed over the open goal. Chances seemed to be a premium for strikers at both ends as Southampton’s England international Rickie Lambert had one sight of goal, from Gerrard’s miscontrol, but sliced a gentle looping shot into the arms of Mignolet. Raheem Sterling’s introduction for Aspas at half-time should have injected some life into Liverpool’s attack but it was the visitors who struck first in the 54th minute. Lovren beat Agger to Lallana’s corner to head down and past Gerrard on the goalline. It was a goal you sensed had been coming for a while. The boost in confidence that gave Southampton was evident in Shaw’s driving run from halfway which saw Mignolet brilliantly stop both his shot, the rebound off Sakho and then get up to prevent substitute Steven Davis poking home. Lovren then produced a timely intervention at the other end, diverting Sterling’s low cross from the byline destined for Henderson. In the final 20 minutes Liverpool were back to two regulation centre-backs as Agger and Skrtel were replaced for more attacking options but it did little to change the outcome. Press Associationlast_img read more

QPR ready to fight

first_img Press Association “But you have to be realistic. Nine of the eleven were playing in the Championship last year and, at the end of the day, we fell short. We weren’t good enough.” QPR’s veteran centre-back Clint Hill, 36, said the players needed to apologise to the fans. He said: “All the mistakes and errors we have made throughout the season played out in 90 minutes yesterday. “We just were not good enough and that has been the case throughout the campaign. There are loads of questions that need answering. Ultimately we did not have the quality to stay up. “It is a difficult one to take and we have to apologise to our fans.” Hill does not apportion any blame to manager Chris Ramsey, who took over with the team already in the relegation zone after Harry Redknapp left in February. The 53-year-old has overseen just two wins in 13 games but Hill hopes he stays on. Asked if Ramsey would be a good appointment, Hill said: “I think so. Obviously he is a good coach who likes his youngsters. It is about getting fresh players in and getting the right culture into the dressing room. “He has come into a difficult situation – with the position we were in and so many of the players not being his. “I feel sorry for him because he has given everything on the training ground. He has tried to raise us and give us a steady platform. In most games we have competed but we have faded towards the end of the season.” Legal proceedings between QPR and the Football League are still going on and an independent arbitration panel will decide on whether QPR are liable. QPR could face a fine of up to £58million for FFP breaches but are challenging the legality of the rules. A joint statement from QPR and the Football League said: “Legal proceedings are ongoing as between Queen’s Park Rangers and the Football League. “QPR challenges the legality of the Football League’s Championship financial fair play rules and any charge against QPR (if any) for breach of FFP Rules shall not be commenced pending the outcome of that challenge. “The proceedings are confidential in nature and neither party is entitled to comment upon the proceedings until the independent arbitral panel has delivered its decision.” QPR did submit their 2013/14 accounts to the Football League – they were in the Championship during that season but were promoted to the Premier League – and at the heart of the issue is a £60million income injection classed as an “exceptional item” in the accounts which was to write off loans. Without that money being put in by the owners, the club would have reported a loss of £69.7million making them liable for huge FFP fines. The Football League position is understood to be that such equity injections by club owners are not permitted and therefore the club should be dealt with as though it had made a £69.7million loss. It is over this issue that QPR has started legal proceedings. Rangers were relegated following the 6-0 defeat at Manchester City on Sunday and former manager Harry Redknapp believes the failure hinged on failing to build a squad capable of Premier League survival last summer – when he was still in charge. Redknapp told Talk Sport: “The thing they have got in their favour is they have a fantastic chairman, a good board, and they have got good supporters as well, who are very loyal to the club. Relegated QPR have insisted they will fight any attempt by the Football League to impose a fine on the club for Financial Fair Play breaches.last_img read more

Shikhar Dhawan Motivated, Want To Keep Him Back: Virat Kohli

first_imgNottingham: India skipper Virat Kohli on Thursday said injured opener Shikhar Dhawan is motivated and the team is hopeful he recovers in time to be part of their World Cup campaign again.Shikhar Dhawan suffered the injury after being hit by a Pat Cummins’ delivery during his 109-ball 117 knock against Australia. Pant, who was initially ignored for Dinesh Karthik when the 15-member squad was picked, has been named as his standby and is expected to fly in to England as cover.”Shikhar will be in a plaster for a couple of weeks, we’ll assess and see. Hopefully he’ll be available for the later half and the semi-finals. He’s motivated, we wanted to keep him back,” Kohli said after the tie against the Kiwis was called off.India next take on arch-rival Pakistan which is always a big-ticket clash on Sunday.”For Sunday, we know we’re there when it comes to the mindset…just about going out there and having a game plan, executing it. As soon as you enter the field, it’s calm and relaxed. The atmosphere from the outside, for the first time, it’s a bit intimidating, but we’ll look to execute well,” said Kohli.”It’s been competitive for years, it’s a marquee event all over the world, honour to be a part of the big game. Brings out the best in all of us,” Kohli said.The no result meant New Zealand (7 points) stay on top while India (5 points) edge ahead of England (4 points) to the third spot with Australia (6 points) staying second. The Kiwis are yet to lose a game with three wins before this, while Virat Kohli and Co. have beaten South Africa and Australia to start their campaign on a high. IANS Also Read:We Will Wait on Shikhar Dhawan, Rahul To Open: Sanjay Bangarlast_img read more

Warner slams ‘very, very poor scheduling’

first_imgAUSTRALIA vice-captain David Warner has labelled as “very, very poor” the scheduling decision that will lead to Australia playing a Twenty20 international at home the day before they begin a Test series in India.The Test players will have a long preparation for the first Test in Pune, spending up to two weeks training on spinning pitches at the ICC Academy in Dubai before heading to India for a warm-up game in Mumbai.However, while the Test players are acclimatising in Asia, a T20 team will be representing Australia in three internationals at home against Sri Lanka.The T20s take place in Melbourne, Geelong and Adelaide on February 17, 19 and 22, and the first Test in India begins on February 23.That means several members of Australia’s first-choice T20 side – including Warner, captain Steven Smith, Usman Khawaja and Mitchell Starc – will be unable to play in the T20s, while others such as Glenn Maxwell could yet find themselves in the Test squad too.“Scheduling is obviously Cricket Australia’s area,” Warner said in an interview with Fox Sports. “They play the big role in putting that on.“For me, it’s about going out there and playing the game and not worrying too much about that. In saying that, it is very, very poor scheduling. To have your Test team going away to play a Test match … it doesn’t make any sense to us.“I don’t like it. Those of us who are part of the T20 team have a bigger goal and bigger picture, and that is to win a World Cup. You want to be putting your best team on the park all the time. At the end of the day, you’ve got Big Bash and IPL.“If me, Smithy, Starcy, Ussy, Shaun Marsh — all these guys that are in the Australian T20 team from the previous World Cup — if we are not playing any T20 cricket in Australia where the next World Cup is meant to be, it becomes quite a tough thing for selectors to work around.“We have one-day stuff where you can put your foot down and prove some things, but for me it’s about playing my best in any of the three formats that you play.”A World T20 is scheduled to be held in Australia in 2020, but there remains the possibility of an event in 2018 as well. Australia are yet to win a World T20 title, having only once made the final, when they were runners-up to England in 2010.(ESPNcricinfo)last_img read more

Sevilla beats Inter Milan 3-2 to win Europa League for record sixth time

first_img Associated Press Sevilla beats Inter Milan 3-2 to win Europa League for record sixth time Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditCOLOGNE, Germany (AP) — Sevilla beats Inter Milan 3-2 to win Europa League for record sixth time.center_img August 21, 2020last_img

In memoriam

first_imgPresident C. L. Max Nikias speaks about Sidney Harman, a Leadership Institute board member who passed away last April, in Town & Gown. Several prominent members of the USC community attended the memorial celebration for the former editor-in-chief of Newsweek and husband of former congresswoman Jane Harman.Kristy Pyke | Daily Trojanlast_img

Despite setbacks, senior player reflects on success

first_imgNick Entin | Daily TrojanDifficult choices · Michael Hutchings considered quitting football after his father’s death during his freshman year, but decided against it.Senior Michael Hutchings has two favorite memories from four years as a Trojan. One at the beginning, one at the end.His first came in November of his freshman year, when a team in transition with a new head coach and something to prove knocked off No. 5 Stanford in front of a sold-out home crowd. The team rallied, former quarterback Cody Kessler threw a key touchdown and a defense-heavy game ended in a 20-17 victory. The stadium shook with cheers as the final whistle blew. Fans streamed over the barricades and onto the field, with cell phones held high to record the madness. Hutchings didn’t start, didn’t record a single tackle all game. But standing on the grass of the Coliseum in the middle of the crowd, he felt like he’d finally made it.A month and 29 days later, he felt as if his world was flipping on its head. He’d lost his father, his idol, the man he was named for, to a battle with pancreatic cancer that didn’t last half of a year. His father, who watched film and scouted opponents, who called him before each game to give him a rundown of suggestions and who taught him to love football.His dad only saw him play a handful of USC games. He was hospitalized soon after moving Hutchings into his dorm. By New Year’s, he was too weak to open presents for his birthday. He died on a January afternoon, two weeks after turning 49.It was a loss that Hutchings couldn’t shake. For him, football and family were intertwined, inseparable. Without his dad, Hutchings wasn’t sure what was left to love about the sport.“It was hard,” Hutchings said. “It was easy to feel like there wasn’t much to keep playing for.”He started skipping team meetings and coming to practices late. Clay Helton, an interim coach at the time, was told to keep an eye on him. For awhile, Hutchings considered just quitting football entirely.Hutchings isn’t sure why he stayed. But he did, grinding through practices, staying steady through every head coach replacement and front page scandal. It wasn’t easy, he said, but it was worth it. The whole team took each season one practice at a time. They trusted in the future, that a season would come when it all would fall into place.In 2016, Hutchings decided that this season, his last season, was the year. As a sophomore, he fell to second string and spent two years clawing his way back into the team’s rotation. But as a senior, he felt ready to leave an impression that wouldn’t fade easily.“I had one year left and I didn’t have anything to lose,” Hutchings said. “I knew I wasn’t going to get any days back. There was no next year. I gave everything I had each day.”The difference was noticeable to Hutchings almost immediately. He attacked every practice at spring camp and approached the locker room just as fervently, making sure to connect with each of his teammates.In August, Hutchings was named a captain alongside Max Browne, Zach Banner and Adoree’ Jackson. A bright red “C” emblazoned his jersey as he started every single game, tying for the second most total tackles for the team. And through a shaky start and a roller coaster finish to his final season, Hutchings focused on being there for his teammates every game, every practice and every day.It was a year to be proud of, a year with nothing to lose and everything to gain. And Hutchings made the most of it. Until this year, his father’s death was a weight, hanging heavily. But now, it’s a constant motivation.“It made me grow off the field a tremendous amount,” Hutchings said. “It made me look at sports, look at football in a different way. I look at it as more of a privilege. It helped me grow to take a step back and appreciate everything that was in front of me.”This year was a turning point for Hutchings. It brought him to his second greatest memory — Saturday’s game against Notre Dame — and the most recent, its vibrance still fading after a few days. He’s not sure what it was about the game, whether it was the pelting rain or the roaring student section or Jackson’s leap over a defender to sprint into the end zone. He recorded five total tackles, but Hutchings’ stats weren’t his focus at the end of the day.It was something about the energy, the way his teammates grinned and laughed and hugged each other after every play. The sideline brimmed with excitement, and Hutchings fed off of it. It took until later, after the game ended and the locker room cleared out, that the weight of his final game in his home field sunk in.“After, when everything was all done, it settled in that it was my last game,” Hutchings said. “Afterwards it hit me hard. This team, it means a lot to all of us. I’ve grown so much as a part of it and when you look back, it just means a lot more than you can say.”Part of that has to do with Helton, a man Hutchings has known since he was 14, since he first considered putting on a USC jersey. He praises the head coach for his fierce loyalty and his determination to support and connect with each of his players.But most of what Hutchings will take away from USC has nothing to do with post-game statistics or highlight reels. It’s the teammates, he says, the friends who have become close to brothers. He respects his teammates, looks up to them and learns from them.“You’re just around all these guys who set great work ethics and great examples,” Hutchings said. “The game provides so much more than just playing. You learn to appreciate people a lot more and know that your problems aren’t the biggest. The fun, the team that I had during this time — that’s what I’ll take away.”Hutchings likes to think that his greatest memory at USC isn’t made just yet. There’s one game left — the unannounced bowl game, a final chance for every senior to make their mark on the team.After that, he’ll graduate in the spring, along with 13 other seniors on the team. He’s not sure what will happen then, what will come next.But Hutchings know one thing for sure. In a few weeks, he’ll put on a jersey labeled “19” on the back and “C” on the chest. He’ll think about his dad, about the advice he would give if he could, and he’ll look for his mom in the stands. He’ll dance with his teammates on the field, cheer from the sidelines and throw hard hits when he can.He’ll play as a Trojan, one last time. And for now, that’s the only thing Hutchings wants to worry about.last_img read more

2020 defensive back Chase Atkinson commits to Syracuse

first_imgThe rising senior at Blythewood (South Carolina) high school was not ranked by 247sports.com and didn’t receive an offer from SU until last weekend’s camp. The 5-foot-11, 180-pound safety’s only other offer was from Coastal Carolina.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textHe’s now the third player to commit to Syracuse in five days, joining Canadian safety Ben Labrosse and tight end Steven Mahar. The SU 2020 class now holds 14 pledges. With senior Evan Foster nearing the end of his SU career, Atkinson could provide much needed secondary depth come 2020. Comments 2020 defensive back Chase Atkinson committed to Syracuse on Wednesday, according to his Twitter page. Facebook Twitter Google+center_img Published on July 31, 2019 at 8:13 pm Contact Adam: adhillma@syr.edu | @_adamhillmanlast_img read more

Drew Brees calls Chargers’ decision to pick new QB ‘worst mistake ever’, says ex-coach

first_img Written By LIVE TV FOLLOW US New Orleans Saints’ veteran Drew Brees has been one of the most iconic quarterbacks in the history of the NFL. However, the 40-year old football star endured some tough times at the San Diego Chargers. In a recent interview with SI.com’s Albert Breer, Chargers’ former quarterback coach Brian Schottenheimer revealed how Drew Brees rose from nothing to become one of the most successful players in the league since his debut in 2001.Also Read | Odell Beckham Jr throws helmet in anger, argues with Browns coach Freddie KitchensDrew Bees named as a finalist in the NFL 100 all-time team COMMENT Last Updated: 27th December, 2019 23:29 IST Drew Brees Calls Chargers’ Decision To Pick New QB ‘worst Mistake Ever’, Says Ex-coach San Diego Chargers coach Brian Schottenheimer revealed that former player Drew Brees called the team’s decision to bring in a new QB as ‘worst decision ever’. Also Read | Lamar Jackson responds to Tom Brady’s challenge on Twitter, says NFL legend’s still got it SUBSCRIBE TO US Daniel Arambur First Published: 27th December, 2019 23:29 IST Also Read | NFL bans Denver Broncos player Kareem Jackson for DUI, speedingSeattle Seahawks’ Brian Schottenheimer reveals an interesting story of former quarterback Drew Brees WATCH US LIVE Also Read | Odell Beckham Jr to join Pittsburgh Steelers? NFL trade rumours around Browns starDrew Brees is in his 18th season in the NFL. He has definitely shown that he still has it in him to perform at the highest level. Former Chargers quarterbacks coach – Brian Schottenheimer – revealed how the decision to acquire a quarterback in the 2004 draft spurred Drew Brees to push harder and win the NFL Comeback Player of the Year that season. Brees went on to record 27 touchdowns against just seven interceptions in 2004. It won him massive recognition and sent him to his first career Pro Bowl. Also Read | NFL rumours: Antonio Brown drawing interest from several teams despite rape allegationsDrew Brees just can’t stop praising teammate Michael Thomaslast_img read more

Clayton Kershaw delievers again with two-hit shutout as Dodgers beat Reds

first_imgHappiness is a warm security blanket fresh out of the dryer.Still sagging from a marathon weekend in San Diego and six losses in their previous eight games, the Dodgers reached for the one thing that always seems to bring them comfort – Clayton Kershaw. The ace left-hander went the distance, throwing a complete-game two-hit shutout in a 1-0 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Monday night.Chants of “M-V-P” rang out during the ninth inning – perhaps started by the Dodgers’ frazzled bullpen, given a desperately-needed day off by Kershaw.After playing for five hours and 47 minutes Sunday afternoon (and evening), Kershaw had everyone home in their pajamas before Stephen Colbert’s first Donald Trump joke, needing much less than half that time – just two hours and 11 minutes – to throw his third complete game in five starts this month. Coming into the game, the Reds’ pitching staff had a 5.57 ERA this season – the worst in baseball by more than a half-run. But the weary Dodgers struggled in left-hander Brandon Finnegan’s wake. They had just two hits through the first five innings and just five in eight innings against Finnegan.Seven Dodgers played all 17 innings Sunday and five of them were in the lineup again Monday – including A.J. Ellis, who has caught 26 innings in the past two days.That lineup put together the mildest of McGyver-esque, spare-parts rallies for the game’s only run – a walk to Justin Turner, a throwing error by the Reds catcher on a pick-off attempt, a checked-swing flare single over the third baseman’s head by Adrian Gonzalez and a run-scoring double play. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorcenter_img The start was not one of Kershaw’s more dominant performances but was one of his more economical – perhaps more valuable to the Dodgers considering the state of their pitching staff after Sunday’s 17-inning game in San Diego (on the heels of an 11-inning game Saturday).Kershaw struck out just seven, his first sub-10 strikeout game since April 15. In between, he had six consecutive starts with at least 10 strikeouts, one short of matching Randy Johnson’s National League record.Kershaw also – gasp – walked a batter. It was only his fifth walk in 79 innings this season.Kershaw was less strikeout fascist and more democratic, getting 15 ground-ball outs. That allowed him to retire the Reds on 11 pitches or fewer in seven of his nine innings.As frugal as Kershaw was with his pitch count, the Dodgers were just as stingy with their offensive support.last_img read more