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Crystal Palace 1-2 Everton, Football League and more – live! | Football

Only one of today’s four Premier League fixtures is being played on our watch, so it’s an afternoon to train our beady focus upon the Football League. There are 28 3pm BST kick-offs across the three divisions, so there’ll surely be goals and drama, but beyond that we’ll be looking to see what coincidences look ready to become full-blown trends.

There are, for example, nine teams in the Football League who haven’t either scored a goal or won a point (for the record: Barnsley, Nottingham Forest*, Wycombe (who host Swansea at lunchtime), Crewe, Oxford, Bolton, Oldham, Grimsby and Southend); another couple who have scored but still don’t have a point (Derby and Wigan); a few who have points but still haven’t scored (Stoke, Portsmouth and Tranmere); eight with 100% records after two games (Reading, Bristol City, Luton, Ipswich, Lincoln, Hull, Cambridge and Port Vale); and 12 who haven’t conceded (including Portsmouth, the nation’s boredom specialists, who haven’t scored either).

* Forest lost their third game without scoring at Huddersfield last night and also lost without scoring in the EFL Cup, so are way down the road to Trend City already. Interestingly the Championship sides who took the fewest shots in their first two games were Luton (12) and Reading (14, joint with Swansea), who both have 100% records

Let’s start with a big list of today’s 3pm BST fixtures:

Premier League

Crystal Palace v Everton


Barnsley v Coventry City
Birmingham City v Rotherham United
Cardiff City v Reading
Derby County v Blackburn Rovers
Millwall v Brentford
Preston v Stoke City
QPR v Middlesbrough

League One

Accrington Stanley v Oxford United
Crewe Alexandra v MK Dons
Doncaster Rovers v Bristol Rovers
Fleetwood Town v Wimbledon
Gillingham v Blackpool
Ipswich Town v Rochdale
Northampton v Hull City
Plymouth Argyle v Shrewsbury Town
Portsmouth v Wigan Athletic
Sunderland v Peterborough
Swindon Town v Burton Albion

League Two

Barrow v Colchester
Bolton Wanderers v Newport County
Bradford City v Stevenage
Cambridge United v Tranmere
Mansfield Town v Exeter City
Oldham Athletic v Crawley Town
Port Vale v Harrogate Town
Salford City v Forest Green Rovers
Scunthorpe United v Carlisle United
Southend United v Morecambe

Scottish Premiership

Hamilton Academical v Dundee United
Livingston v St Johnstone
St Mirren v Kilmarnock

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Fantasy football scout tips gameweek 3: Kevin De Bruyne, Timo Werner, Daniel Podence and more

Manchester City’s Premier League campaign finally got underway on Monday night and Kevin De Bruyne earned himself 13 points. It was just another evening’s work for a player who outscored every other midfielder in fantasy last year.

What’s more, with City’s squad depleted by injury, De Bruyne is playing as a No 10 and could stay there for a while yet. Plus, he’s on penalties. Against a Leicester City side without Wilfred Ndidi to mop up danger, De Bruyne could register a double-digit score again.

The one moment De Bruyne would rather forget from Monday night is being nutmegged in the build up to Wolves’ goal. That slice of impudence came from Daniel Podence, who is quickly emerging as the budget midfielder of choice.

Although the arrival of Nelson Semedo could see Adama Traoré pushed up to right wing, Podence is also able to play on the left and surely will not be sacrificed after setting up two goals in two games.

After just one fantasy assist in his first two games, those who invested in Werner at the start of the season are beginning to have some doubts. But if you’re wondering whether to move elsewhere, wait for one more weekend at least.

The Chelsea striker comes up against West Bromwich Albion, who have conceded eight goals already and were torn apart by Everton last weekend. Granted they were down to 10 men for the majority but still look like prime candidates for Werner’s first victims.

Though he gave away a cheap penalty on De Bruyne and though Ruben Vinagre may have found a way back into Nuno’s plans following Marcal’s injury, Saiss remains the best Wolves defensive option as they embark on a favourable run of fixtures.

Nuno’s side travel to West Ham for Sunday’s evening kick-off then have three home fixtures in their next four games against Fulham, Newcastle and Crystal Palace, none of whom are traditionally high-scoring. Sign a Wolves defender and you will be ahead of the curve.

As a rule, you want to spend very few transfers in defence and fewer still on your goalkeeper, though the emergence of Martinez as Aston Villa’s first-choice is worth monitoring as people consider whether to play their wildcards.

Villa are away to Fulham who, despite their goal rush at Elland Road last week, are still likely to be among the lowest-scoring teams this season. Meanwhile, Dean Smith’s side appear to have shored up at the back if their form since Project Restart is anything to go by.

Honourable mentions: Sergio Reguilon, Raheem Sterling, Ollie Watkins, Gabriel Jesus

Captaincy: Kevin De Bruyne

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Thiago Silva reveals he joined Chelsea on free transfer after Lampard gave him vote of confidence despite turning 36

THIAGO SILVA claims he joined Chelsea after being given the vote of confidence by Frank Lampard despite turning 36 tomorrow.

The legendary Brazilian centre-back completed a stunning free transfer to Stamford Bridge last month after an eight-year spell at Paris Saint-Germain.

Thiago Silva admits he joined Chelsea due to his admiration for Frank Lampard


Thiago Silva admits he joined Chelsea due to his admiration for Frank LampardCredit: Getty Images – Getty
Lampard had no qualms about signing Silva despite his advancing years


Lampard had no qualms about signing Silva despite his advancing yearsCredit: Getty Images – Getty

Silva penned a one-year contract with the option to extend it for another season.

And Chelsea fans will be praying he can improve their leaky defence following Sunday’s 2-0 defeat to Liverpool.

Ex-AC Milan star Silva has done it all during a glistening career that’s seen him rack up an incredible 741 appearances.

He has eight league titles to his name and led Brazil to glory at last year’s Copa America.

However, some have questioned whether Silva has the legs to deal with the pace of English football.

But the veteran is confident of earning his keep in west London.

And Silva claims the confidence shown in him by Lampard during talks was enough to seal a deal with Chelsea over the summer.

Silva told the club’s official website: “First and foremost, I came because Chelsea is an amazing team and one of the biggest clubs in the world.

“It helps when you’re welcomed so warmly, particularly by a coach who played until relatively recently, because in football there are very strong preconceptions regarding the age of players. 

“But I know about his experience when he first arrived at Manchester City, theoretically at the end of his career. He endured the same sort of thing as I’ve gone through.

“So even from the outside, without knowing me personally, he knows how hard I work to remain at the highest level. The confidence that he showed in me – that was all it took. 

“For me, that confidence was the single most important factor. To hear that he believed in me, that he thought that I could come here and make a positive contribution. 

“With our young group, as well as some more experienced players like our captain [Cesar] Azpilicueta, we’ve got all it takes for a great season.

“You can be sure that I’ll do everything I can to repay that confidence out on the pitch. We’ve signed some top players and we’ve got a squad capable of putting together a great season so that’s what we’re going to try and do.”

Silva also reflected on the time he played against Lampard in 2013 during a 2-2 draw between England and Brazil.

Silva added: “It was a long time ago now, so it’s hard to talk about that particular game but I could see his quality whenever I saw him playing for England or Chelsea. 

“He stood out for his technique, for the quality of his long and short passing, and his exceptional mid- and long-range shooting. Those are qualities that fans of great football will always notice. 

“Quality players stick in your mind and you need that to be the captain of England, not just leadership. Actually, the two go hand-in-hand – you need the quality as a player to be able to lead the group and that’s what he had.

“He had the necessary qualities to be a captain because people saw what a great player he was.”

Fikayo Tomori talks about his football beginnings at Chelsea football club

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Barcelona boss Quique Setien provides Lionel Messi injury update after win over Napoli

Lionel Messi went down after Kalidou Koulibaly kicked his left leg (Picture: Getty)

Quique Setien says Lionel Messi suffered a ‘fierce knock’ after being kicked in the leg by Kalidou Koulibaly in Barcelona’s win over Napoli but he expects the forward to make a speedy recovery.

The Catalan giants secured their place in the Champions League quarter-finals after beating Napoli 3-1 (agg 4-2) on Saturday night, with Clement Lenglet, Messi and Luis Suarez getting on the scoresheet for the hosts at the Nou Camp.

Lorenzo Insigne converted from the penalty spot to give Napoli hope right on half-time but Messi and co held on to their advantage to set up a mouthwatering clash with Bayern Munich in the next round.

Koulibaly struck Messi’s leg while trying to clear the ball (Picture: BT Sport)

Messi appeared in some discomfort after Koulibaly struck his left leg while attempting to clear the ball when the scoreline was 2-0 and Barcelona’s medical staff ran on to attend to the iconic attacker.

Barca will no doubt have been sweating at the sight of the Argentinian on the ground but he stayed on for the full 90 minutes – and Setien reassured supporters it will not be a ‘big problem’ ahead of the side’s quarter-final with Bayern.

‘Lionel took quite a fierce knock in that challenge from Koulibaly,’ the Barcelona manager said.

‘But I don’t think it’ll become a big problem for him.’

The La Liga giants will face Bayern Munich in the quarter-finals (Picture: Getty)

Bayern booked their place in the next round with a comprehensive 4-1 (agg 7-1) victory over Chelsea and Setien is looking forward to a tough encounter between two of Europe’s top teams.

‘The game against Bayern will be complicated, but we are also a great team,’ he added.

‘The team has been good and we deserved the victory.

‘We have overcome the opening minutes and in the second half Napoli didn’t create much danger.

More: Champions League

‘The truth is that Napoli are one of the best Italian teams. We knew how to react to their start and then we had a good first half.

‘They have had more prominence during the second half.’

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MORE: Frank Lampard criticises Chelsea players and responds to Kai Havertz speculation after Bayern Munich mauling

MORE: Owen Hargreaves highlights key ‘worry’ with Chelsea’s move for Kai Havertz

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Sancho terms ‘AGREED’, Bruno Fernandes and Pogba INJURED, Grealish transfer ‘DONE’ – The Sun

MANCHESTER UNITED host Bournemouth this afternoon as they aim to extend their winning run to an incredible 16 matches.

And Jack Grealish has reportedly all but agreed to join the Red Devils while defensive target Kalidou Koulibaly’s asking price has been slashed to £64m.

Follow ALL of the latest United news here…

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Emile Heskey sends warning to James Maddison over Man Utd transfer

Maddison has impressed during his two seasons in the top flight (Picture: Getty Images)

Emile Heskey has advised James Maddison not to rush a move to a ‘bigger club’ like Manchester United and instead stay at Leicester City for another ‘two or three years’.

The 23-year-old has emerged as one of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s top priority targets for the next transfer window, with the Norwegian boss aiming to add another creative midfielder to his squad.

Maddison has been instrumental in the Foxes’ push for the Champions League places, registering six goals and three assists in the Premier League this season.

However, former Leicester striker Heskey warned the midfielder that although a move to a top club is on the horizon, he still has room to grow under the tutelage of Brendan Rodgers.

Speaking exclusively to 888sport, he said: ‘Maddison has to look at himself and find out where his pathway lies. He is still a young lad with many years ahead of him and a lot of learning still to do.

‘He has a great teacher in Brendan Rodgers, but at some stage he will be wondering what his next path will be.

‘That he has taken it so far at Leicester and now what is the next path, so at some stage he will be looking to move to a bigger club.

‘Right now though I don’t see why he can’t stay for another two or three years, that will still only take him to 25.’

Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish is another midfield target for Solskjaer (Picture: Getty Images)

Northern Irish boss Rodgers has turned the Midlands club’s fortunes around since taking over from Claude Puel in February 2019, and Heskey isn’t surprised he is being linked with big clubs.

‘I just think Brendan Rodgers is a very good football coach and they have bought into his philosophy,’ he added.

‘He’s got a great philosophy that he implemented at Swansea, Liverpool and Celtic and he got results.

‘Now he’s doing the same at Leicester and he’s still getting good results. Now everyone is being linked to so-called bigger clubs, that’s how you know how well he is doing.

More: Manchester United FC

‘I think Leicester are a little bit away from being a top four club consistently, that’s because I don’t think Spurs, Chelsea, and Arsenal will have another bad season as they’ve had.

‘So top four no. But top six, one hundred per cent. I don’t think top four is Leicester’s priority right now.

‘Their priority is taking things one step at a time and cementing themselves in the top eight and then saying, “Okay, where’s the next one? Top six. Right, let’s move up to that one”. You can’t just jump into the top four.’

Read the full 888sport interview with Emile Heskey here.

MORE: Gary Neville reveals the real reason Ravel Morrison didn’t make it at Manchester United

MORE: Paul Ince claims ‘diabolical’ Paul Pogba has been shown up by Manchester United new boy Bruno Fernandes

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Jadon Sancho ‘unofficially confirms Old Trafford transfer’, Saul eyed as Pogba replacement – The Sun

MANCHESTER UNITED fans may have to wait until JULY to see their team play in the Premier League again.

But despite the top-flight’s return date still not confirmed due to the coronavirus pandemic, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is focusing on a big summer overhaul.

We’ve got updates on the futures of Jadon Sancho and Paul Pogba, who looks set to leave with Aaron Ramsey or Saul Niguez joining in his place.

Follow all the latest gossip and news from Old Trafford below…

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Jamie Redknapp speaks out over Mason Mount’s ‘stupid’ coronavirus breach

Mason Mount defied Chelsea’s guidelines as he was spotted playing football with Declan Rice (Picture: Getty)

Jamie Redknapp admits Mason Mount made a ‘big mistake’ by ignoring Chelsea’s self-isolation guidelines but urged critics to forgive the midfielder after his ‘stupid’ error of judgment.

A member of the public spotted Mount having a casual kickabout with Declan Rice and others in Barnet on Sunday despite Chelsea’s strict instructions to avoid such activities after Callum Hudson-Odoi tested positive for the coronavirus.

The England international has since apologised to Frank Lampard for his behaviour over the phone and Chelsea’s squad have been reminded of their responsibilities amid the devastating health crisis.

Speaking about Mount’s lapse of judgement on Sky Sports’ The Debate, ex-Liverpool and England star Redknapp said: ‘He’s made a mistake. He’s a great kid, a really nice boy, well educated, he’s got a lovely family behind him.

‘He’s made a mistake, I remember making plenty of mistakes when I was his age and I’m sure with Frank and everybody at the club will stick by him.

‘We’ve all done stupid things in our time. He is a brilliant young man, that’s all I can say.’

Redknapp has jumped to Mount’s defence after his ‘big mistake’ (Picture: Getty)

Redknapp believes Mount will feel awful about his behaviour considering the seriousness of the current COVID-19 pandemic but hopes fans are able to forget the incident in time.

‘We all want to get back to watching football and not sit here talking about something that’s so serious but that’s life, we just have to get on with it,’ he added.

‘He loves the game and that’s the problem but as I say it was just the wrong time for him to do it.

‘Knowing him, I’ve met him a few times, he’ll feel so bad about what he’s done.

‘He’s made a big mistake but there will be people all around the world who should be self-isolating that are not so let’s just forget about it now, he’s made a mistake and everybody just moves on.’

Lampard has urged fans to take care of each other during the pandemic (Picture: Getty)

Chelsea manager Frank Lampard has called on the public to take care of one another amid the coronavirus crisis and reassured fans that Callum Hudson-Odoi was recovering well in self-isolation.

‘I’m happy to say that in Callum’s case, he has made great progress and almost feels his usual self, which is obviously the news we all want to hear,’ Lampard said.

‘I am of course aware that not everyone can or will recover from this virus, so I urge all of the football and sporting community to continue to act responsibly and look out for the health of others.

‘I want to make it clear that I am no medical expert when it comes to challenging times such as these but please do take the time to call older relatives and vulnerable people who might be alone, or offer to drop round shopping if they can’t get out. Let’s make sure we all take care of each other.

‘Social distancing can leave us feeling isolated, however we can continue to support each other even if that means doing it remotely.

‘Of course we still don’t know when competitive football will restart, but it isn’t worth worrying about that too much at the moment.

‘We all miss football, but right now it’s about acting responsibly and in the best interests of society. I am sure I wasn’t the only one who found myself in a strange place with no sport this weekend, but ultimately none of that matters when we consider the bigger picture.’

More: Chelsea FC

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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer speaks out on angry rant at Jesse Lingard during Man City clash

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was furious with Jesse Lingard during Manchester United’s win over Man City (Sky Sports)

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer insists his angry tirade towards Jesse Lingard during Manchester United’s Carabao Cup clash against Manchester City on Wednesday evening was ‘in the heat of the moment’.

The incident occurred during the second half of their match at the Etihad Stadium as United were chasing a second goal after Nemanja Matic had scored in the first half.

But Lingard’s wayward pass for Fred in the 58th minute was intercepted and City quickly countered to create a one-on-one chance for Raheem Sterling.

Sterling was unable to equalise for City but Lingard’s error sparked a strong reaction from Solskjaer on the touchline.

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Television cameras which were directed towards the dugout caught Solskjaer shouting: ‘Jesse. One more time and you’re f****** off.’

Lingard was substituted shortly after in the 65th minute.

When asked about the incident after the match, Solskjaer replied: ‘Ah, it was just heat of the moment.

‘Once in a while when you lose the ball just make sure we try to play more.

Solskjaer hugged Jesse Lingard after substituting him (Sky Sports)

‘In the next moment him and Victor [Lindelof] grew in confidence.

‘Once in a while you’re going to make mistakes.

‘But if you’re going to come here and just defend you’ve got no chance.

‘Yes, we created one or two dangerous moments with the way we tried to play our way out.

‘But that’s the way we want the boys to express themselves that we have to do that to release the pressure.’

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United were unable to score their second goal and were reduced to 10 men with 14 minutes remaining following Matic’s red card.

City won the tie 3-2 on aggregate and Pep Guardiola’s side will play Aston Villa in the final on March 1.

More: Manchester United FC

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