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Football News

» Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Milinkovic-Savic bid submitted, Man Utd 'speed up' Martinez bid
Gabriel Jesus has been officially announced as Arsenal's fourth new signing of the window, but Mikel Arteta does not appear content with stopping his summer spending spree yet
» Liverpool confirmed shirt numbers for 2022/23 season as five players given new digits
Harvey Elliott and Ben Davies have both been given new shirt numbers while Liverpool's three new summer arrivals have all been handed their first jerseys since joining the club
» Man Utd confirm Tyrell Malacia transfer as Erik ten Hag turns to next target
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag will be keen to get further signings over the line after wrapping up a deal to bring in Dutch international defender Tyrell Malacia
» Mask-wearing Ultras force ex-Liverpool star Albert Riera to flee managerial unveiling
Albert Riera has taken charge at Slovenian side Olimpija Ljubljana but the former Liverpool player saw his unveiling invaded by masked ultras, frustrated with the club's decisions
» Jurgen Klopp's Roberto Firmino comment poses real problem as Liverpool exit plan emerges
The Reds are seemingly willing to bid farewell to Firmino sooner rather than later but could find it difficult to replace him with a like-for-like addition given the rare traits he possesses
» Mauricio Pochettino lurking for big Premier League job after PSG sacking
Paris Saint-Germain have finally announced the departure of Mauricio Pochettino following months of speculation as to when the former Tottenham boss would be be sacked
» When does the Women’s Euro 2022 start? Key dates, how to watch and every team involved
The European Championships return to English soil just 12 months after the postponed Euro 2020 tournament last summer, as England women hope to go one step further and lift the trophy at Wembley
» AJ Odudu debuts 'I Am The 12th Woman' t-shirt for UEFA Women's Euro 2022 - available at Amazon
Priced at £12 from Amazon, the t-shirts have been designed to encouraging fans of all genders to show their passion for women’s football and the tournament
» Real Madrid's 'billion euro' transfer clauses as Gini Wijnaldum offered PSG escape
EUROPEAN TRANSFER ROUND-UP: As clubs prepare to jet off on lucrative pre-season tours there still remains lots of unfinished transfer business as Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain eye up targets
» Tottenham's £60m new boy Richarlison hit with FA ban before he's even played for Spurs
The former Everton man agreed to join Spurs in a £60m mega transfer this summer from Everton as part of Antonio Conte’s spending spree but he now looks set to have to wait for his debut for the north London side
» Reading aim to drive £20 away ticket price scheme but only three of 23 clubs respond
The Royals sent a letter out to every one of their Championship rivals asking to reciprocate their scheme of capping away tickets at £20 - but the vast majority of teams have yet to respond
» Women's Euro 2022: When do England play? Fixtures and how to watch on TV
The Lionesses lost to Holland in 2017, who went on to win the entire tournament - but this year England's women are aiming to bring football home after the men's team narrowly missed out last year
» Cristiano Ronaldo warning makes Erik ten Hag's life even harder amid Man Utd exit drama
The iconic Manchester United number seven has made it clear to those above him at the club that he wishes to be allowed to leave if a sufficient bid comes in for him this summer
» Liverpool move on to new top priority contract after securing Mohamed Salah deal
Liverpool have managed to tie star forward Mohamed Salah down to a new long-term contract at Anfield and it now appears Jurgen Klopp has even more plans for the rest of his remaining squad
» Cristiano Ronaldo's alleged "this is s***" comments explain why he wants out at Man Utd
Cristiano Ronaldo is looking for a way out of Man United and his behaviour at times last season highlighted his frustration as he continues to remain absent during pre-season
» Mauricio Pochettino sacked by PSG despite Ligue 1 title with next manager at the ready
Mauricio Pochettino's time as Paris Saint-Germain manager is up after the club decided to sack the former Tottenham Hotspur boss following months of speculation
» Chelsea 'offered' Neymar and Cristiano Ronaldo as Todd Boehly gives Thomas Tuchel promise
Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar and Manchester United forward Cristiano Ronaldo have been linked with exits from and Chelsea have reportedly been offered both this summer
» Comparing Christian Eriksen to Bruno Fernandes as Man Utd face new selection dilemma
United are on the verge of signing Eriksen, and the 30-year-old looks set to rival Fernandes for a place in Ten Hag's starting 11 next season
» Mason Mount shows off incredible body transformation ahead of new season
Mason Mount has ensured he returns to Chelsea pre-season in the best possible shape after sharing a snap of his physique - which highlights how far he's come since his debut
» Burnley flop Wout Weghorst set for exit barely six months after £12m signing
The giant Dutch striker was expected to achieve big things when he arrived at Turf Moor on deadline day in January, but he scored just two goals as Burnley dropped into the Championship
» Liverpool make Joe Gomez transfer U-turn amid Aston Villa's £30m interest
ASTON VILLA TRANSFER ROUND-UP: Villa have been active in the transfer window - with four arrivals already in at Villa Park - but boss Steven Gerrard is expected to land at least two more signings
» 5 things noticed from Man Utd training as senior stars taste first Erik ten Hag session
Erik ten Hag had the luxury of watching the majority of his Manchester United in training on Monday as their pre-season preparations continued ahead of their first friendly against Liverpool
» Man City facing up to nightmare Erling Haaland reality with release clause set to plummet
The Norwegian striker has only been a Manchester City player for a matter of months but he has already written a surprise clause into his contract that could see him leave the Etihad Stadium
» Cristiano Ronaldo absent from training again as Man Utd left unsure over pre-season
Cristiano Ronaldo remains absent from Manchester United's pre-season training and the club are none the wiser as to when their forward will be back at Carrington

Other sport news:

» David Squires on … Euro 2022 coming to merry old England

Our resident cartoonist on this summer’s Women’s European Championship and the sometimes bumpy journey to get here

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» Manchester United confirm Tyrell Malacia as first signing of Ten Hag era
  • Netherlands left-back joins from Feyenoord for initial €15m
  • United unsure if Ronaldo will fly with squad to Thailand

Erik ten Hag has made his first signing as Manchester United manager after the club confirmed Tyrell Malacia had joined from Feyenoord on a four-year contract with the option of a further year. The fee is an initial €15m (£12.9m) with up to another €2m to follow in add-ons.

The 22-year-old left-back, who has a fast, dynamic style, will provide competition for Luke Shaw and Alex Telles, though Telles may be sold if United receive an appropriate offer.

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» Women’s Euro 2022: our writers predict the winners and surprises

Who will take the Golden Boot? Who will be the breakthrough star? Our correspondents gaze into the Guardian’s crystal ball

Anita Asante This is a fantastic opportunity for England to reach a European final with huge support from a home crowd, but also they have so much depth and cover in every position. I can see France joining England in the final if they get a good run of form because they have equally strong threats in attack. Tough shout, but England to win.

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» PSG appoint Christophe Galtier as manager after sacking Pochettino
  • Galtier left Nice to take job after spells at Lille and St-Etienne
  • Pochettino led PSG to title last season but fell short in Europe

Paris Saint-Germain have sacked Mauricio Pochettino as their manager and confirmed Christophe Galtier as his replacement.

Pochettino has left after 18 months, during which he won his first trophies as a manager: the Ligue 1 title last season and, before that, the 2020-21 Coupe de France and 2020 Trophée des Champions.

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» Premier League footballer arrested by Met police on suspicion of rape
  • Police say allegation of rape of woman in her 20s was reported
  • Player in custody as inquiries continue, police statement adds

A leading Premier League footballer has been arrested on suspicion of rape and taken into custody by the Metropolitan police.

The 29-year-old was detained in the early hours of Monday and is being questioned by officers. A statement from Scotland Yard said that the alleged offence occurred last month.

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» Transfer roundup: Brentford poised to sign Hickey from Bologna for £18.9m
  • Leeds close to finalising deal for winger Luis Sinisterra
  • Defender Taiwo Awoniyi in line to join Nottingham Forest

Brentford expect to confirm the signing of Aaron Hickey from Bologna this week, with the Scotland defender due to fly to England on Tuesday for a medical.

The Premier League club have agreed to pay €22m (£18.9m) for the 20-year-old, who joined Bologna from Hearts just under two years ago.

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» Football transfer rumours: Cristiano Ronaldo to Barcelona? Really?

Today’s gossip wears denim wherever it goes

Ambition has no room for sentiment. The Mill wouldn’t know much about this, having chugged along near the bottom of the transfer-gossip pyramid for the best part of 20 years, but we read it on a toilet wall once and it sounded profound. And if we had any lingering doubts about the incompatibility of ambition and sentiment, they’ve been obliterated by the burgeoning where-will-Cristiano-Ronaldo-pout-next saga!

Monday’s news that Ronaldo is making come-to-CR7 eyes at Chelsea was a knife to the memory bank for all connected with Manchester United. And Tuesday’s rags suggest he is now doing the same to Real Madrid!

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» Football fans can stand at new Wembley for first time from next season
  • Government approves safe-standing areas at football grounds
  • Manchester United and Chelsea among clubs to have licences

Fans will be allowed to stand at the new Wembley for the first time from next season, after the government approved safe-standing areas at football grounds.

The sports minister, Nigel Huddleston, has confirmed that clubs are now able to apply for permanent safe-standing licences, and the national stadium is among those grounds where licences have been granted after successful trials. Huddleston said he hoped the new technology would help to prevent further disorder of the kind that has disrupted matches over the last year.

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» Women’s Euro 2022: your complete guide to all 368 players

Get to know every single squad member at the tournament. Click on the circular player pictures for a full profile

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» Women’s Football Weekly: Euro 2022 preview show – podcast

Faye Carruthers is joined by Suzanne Wrack, Robyn Cowen and Jonathan Liew to preview the groups of Euro 2022, which kicks off on Wednesday

It feels like we’ve been talking about it forever – but Women’s Euro 2022 finally kicks off on Wednesday.

You can’t miss the Lionesses, whether it’s on crisp packets, drinks bottles, billboards or the cliffs of Dover. But what about the other teams who stand in their way?

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» Just the ticket: Ella Toone splashes out for England’s Old Trafford opener
  • Manchester United player and fan buys 24 seats for Austria game
  • ‘Amazing’ to play at sold-out stadium where she still watches

The dreaming is nearly over. Ella Toone, a Manchester United player and fan, has bought the extra 24 tickets for family and friends and sustained the superb form to play her way into contention as one of Sarina Wiegman’s gamechangers. Now she just has to turn up at Old Trafford on Wednesday and, whether starting or coming on, do her thing. She will feel at home, after all.

England face Austria in the opening game of the biggest Women’s European Championship yet. The Tyldesley-born playmaker admits she fantasises about celebrating scoring with a knee slide in front of the Stretford End but now that the reality is approaching, the Lionesses having travelled from their Staffordshire training base to Manchester on Monday, Toone finds herself serenely living the moment.

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» Women’s Euro 2022 team guide No 16: Italy

After a surprise run at the World Cup three years ago, the Azzurre hope to rekindle their 1990s heyday by becoming fixtures in the latter stages of tournaments once more

This article is part of the Guardian’s Women’s Euro 2022 Experts’ Network, a cooperation between some of the best media organisations from the 16 countries who have qualified. is running previews from two countries each day in the run-up to the tournament kicking off on 6 July.

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» Christian Eriksen agrees to Manchester United move on three-year contract
  • Midfielder told United and Brentford of decision on Monday
  • Denmark international’s free transfer is subject to a medical

Christian Eriksen has agreed to join Manchester United on a three-year deal after talks with Erik ten Hag. The Denmark midfielder, who spent the final four months of last season at Brentford and is out of contract, has reached a verbal agreement and the move is subject to a medical.

Eriksen returned to action in February after his cardiac arrest at Euro 2020 eight months earlier and Brentford had hoped to keep him. But the 30-year-old has opted for United and communicated his decision to both clubs on Monday.

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» Men’s transfer window summer 2022 – all deals from Europe’s top five leagues

All of the summer’s Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga, Ligue 1 and Serie A deals and a club-by-club guide

The summer transfer window 2022 promises to be as busy as ever. We have already had some big transfers with Erling Haaland joining Manchester City the biggest one so far.

But Sadio Mané has indicated he wants to leave Liverpool and likewise Robert Lewandowski could be on the move from Bayern Munich with Barcelona a reported destination.

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» Women’s transfer window summer 2022 – all deals from Europe’s top five leagues

All deals from the WSL, Serie A femminile, Primera División, Division 1 Féminine and Frauen-Bundesliga plus club-by-club guides

The women’s summer transfer window is expected to be a busy one. In England, Manchester City will have to rebuild after losing Lucy Bronze, Georgia Stanway and Caroline Weir.

Elsewhere in the WSL, Chelsea are unlikely to remain quiet while Vivianne Miedema has told Arsenal to invest in the squad after signing a new contract.

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» Phillips seals Manchester City move as Leeds take Adams to replace him
  • Kalvin Phillips makes ‘dream’ transfer for £42m plus add-ons
  • Leeds agree Tyler Adams deal and close on Luís Sinisterra

Manchester City have confirmed the signing of Kalvin Phillips from Leeds, who have moved swiftly to replace the England midfielder with RB Leipzig’s Tyler Adams.

Phillips has joined City for £42m plus add-ons on a six-year contract and Leeds have agreed to pay up to £20m, including add-ons, for Adams. The US international is due to travel to England for a medical.

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» Chelsea consider move for Cristiano Ronaldo from Manchester United
  • Ronaldo’s agent Jorge Mendes has offered player to London club
  • Co-owner is interested but a deal will depend on Thomas Tuchel

Chelsea are considering a move for Cristiano Ronaldo but it remains to be seen whether Thomas Tuchel is keen on signing the Manchester United forward.

Ronaldo wants to leave United because of what he perceives as a lack of ambition in their summer transfer dealings and his agent, Jorge Mendes, offered the 37-year-old to Chelsea’s co-owner Todd Boehly last month. Boehly is understood to be intrigued by the idea of signing the Portugal international and has held further talks with Mendes but is likely to be led by Tuchel’s thoughts on Ronaldo before firming up any offer.

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» ‘Very excited’: Arsenal confirm Gabriel Jesus signing from Manchester City
  • Brazil forward joins for £45m and is fourth summer signing
  • Mikel Arteta hails player he worked with as assistant at City

Arsenal have confirmed the signing of Gabriel Jesus from Manchester City. The Brazil forward has joined for £45m and is Mikel Arteta’s fourth purchase of the summer.

Jesus, who scored 95 goals in 236 games for City across five and a half seasons, follows the midfielder Fábio Vieira, goalkeeper Matt Turner and another Brazilian forward, Marquinhos, into the club. The 19-year-old Marquinhos has been described by Edu, Arsenal’s technical director, as one for the future.

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» Duncan Ferguson leaves Everton role to pursue managerial ambitions
  • Ferguson had two spells as caretaker manager at Goodison Park
  • ‘I need to move on to take that next step in my career’

Duncan Ferguson has left his coaching role at Everton to pursue managerial ambitions, the club have announced.

Ferguson had served on the backroom staff to a succession of managers at Goodison Park and also had two spells as caretaker manager, the most recent being after Rafael Benítez was sacked last season. The 50-year-old reverted to assistant manager after the appointment of Frank Lampard in January.

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» Andy Goram obituary
Scotland and Rangers goalkeeper known as a superb shot-stopper who also played first-class cricket for Scotland

The goalkeeper Andy Goram, who has died aged 58 of cancer, played more than 40 times for Scotland between 1986 and 1998 and wore the No 1 shirt for Rangers through most of the 1990s, winning the Scottish Premier League with the club on five occasions. Unusually for a footballer of the modern era, he was also a first-class cricketer, appearing for Scotland in the early 90s.

Though short for a keeper, at 5ft 11in, Goram possessed all the attributes needed at the top level. A superb shot-stopper with fast reflexes, he had an excellent positional sense that allowed him to quickly close down shooting angles and a will to win that was a boon to all the sides he played for. Known at Rangers simply as “the Goalie” he was widely regarded not only as the best ever Rangers goalkeeper, but one of the greatest Scotland has known.

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» John Eustace replaces Lee Bowyer at Birmingham amid takeover uncertainty
  • Eustace had been assistant at QPR and Republic of Ireland
  • Bowyer was sacked on Saturday after 16 months in charge

Birmingham have appointed John Eustace as their new head coach, one day after announcing Lee Bowyer’s departure.

The 42-year-old Eustace, who was assistant manager with QPR and, since March, the Republic of Ireland, has agreed a three-year deal with the Championship club. The change of manager at St Andrew’s comes amid uncertainty over a proposed takeover.

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» Euro 2022 is here, and can be the living proof women’s football has arrived

Women’s game’s growth since Euro 2017 has been remarkable, and England offers the perfect stage to showcase that progress

If a tree falls in the woods but no one is there to see or hear it, does it make a sound?

For so long women’s football has been that tree, struggling to be seen or heard. There was so little coverage and attendances were so low that you could be forgiven for wondering if matches had even taken place. Now, all eyes are on the tree. There are journalists camped in the woods, laptops at the ready, a crowd has gathered around it and specialists wait nearby. The world has woken up to the existence of the women’s game in recent years and is now hungry for more.

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» Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure will hurt but now Manchester United can move forward | Jonathan Wilson

Erik ten Hag could not have accommodated an ageing forward whose decision to leave should aid a huge rebuilding job

Ralf Rangnick had been Manchester United manager for two days when he observed to a colleague that he couldn’t play with Cristiano Ronaldo, but he certainly couldn’t play without him – and that is the dilemma any manager of United will have.

There remained at times something vaguely glorious about Ronaldo last season. He was still capable of narrative-shifting late goals. He still looked the same, a little slower perhaps, but his body was evidence of a lifetime’s dedication. Though much had been lost, much abided; it was still at times possible to believe that some noble work could yet be done.

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» Lauren Hemp: ‘I put so much pressure on myself I don’t really feel it from the outside’

The England winger tipped for Euros super-stardom discusses freedom under Sarina Wiegman and where she needs to improve

Quiet and unassuming off the pitch but bold and fearless on it, Lauren Hemp is being tipped for super-stardom at the Euros.

The 21-year-old is used to the hype and expectation, having won the Professional Footballers’ Association young player of the year award four times, first in 2018 aged 17 then in 2020, 2021 and 2022. Now, though, it is ramping up a level. Hemp has had a phenomenal season for club and country, scoring 20 times in 36 games for Manchester City, and will probably be critical to England’s hopes this month. The pressure could be too much for even the most experienced players, but it cannot match the pressure she places on herself.

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» Football transfer fees present another divisive moment for Australian game | Emma Kemp

The introduction of a domestic transfer system could make Australia relevant in the global market, but opponents to the idea say young talent could be priced out of the cash-strapped professional game

It has been 12 years since Mat Ryan was given his first chance at senior professional football when, as an 18-year-old, he left Blacktown City and signed with the Central Coast Mariners. It was an opportunity which opened the door to Club Brugge, Valencia, Brighton and Real Sociedad. It was also an opportunity he believes might not have occurred under current rules.

“When you are taking your first step into professional football, clubs have to take a chance on you,” Ryan says. “If there was a big fee on my head the Mariners might have looked elsewhere and thought the risk was too high.”

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» Five key England issues for Wiegman before hosts kick off Euro 2022

With the warm-ups over, the England manager must decide where to play her captain, and who can back up Ellen White

Arsenal’s centre-back Leah Williamson is arguably one of England’s best players but finding the position that gets the best out of Wiegman’s captain while keeping the team balanced is not easy. Against Belgium Williamson was deployed in midfield, as has been the case with increasing frequency under Wiegman. Against the Netherlands she began in the middle but dropped into the backline in the second half and against Switzerland she operated from the back. Wiegman has made the most of this trio of preparation games to try to find the fit for her captain. Williamson was handed the armband after performing well in defence early in Wiegman’s tenure and impressing the manager more generally.

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» Tigers review – gripping true-life tale of a troubled Swedish football prodigy

Erik Enge excels as Inter Milan wunderkind Martin Bengtsson in Ronnie Sandahl’s impressively knotty look at the psychology of top-tier sport

A Swedish teenage football prodigy who is acquired by a top Italian team finds that the high price tag placed on his skills doesn’t necessarily transfer to his self-worth, in this impressive, knotty examination of the psychology of sporting excellence. The second feature from writer-director Ronnie Sandahl (who also wrote the screenplay for the tale of tennis rivalry Borg vs McEnroe), Tigers is inspired by the real-life story of Martin Bengtsson.

Erik Enge is remarkable in the central role of Martin. He’s a gauche, driven kid with braces and a notebook in which he writes, in his naive child’s hand, motivational notes to himself: Train Eat Recover. But he finds himself in a world that, while not exactly grownup – the other junior team members are arrested in a kind of petulant permanent adolescence – is full of adult temptations and challenges.

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» Women's Euro 2022: who are the favourites and what are England's chances? – video

After being postponed for a year due to Covid-19, the Women's European Championship in England starts this week, with the opening game set to be played in front of a sold-out Old Trafford on 6 July.

Guardian football writer Suzanne Wrack breaks down the teams and players to look out for – and gives her verdict on England's chances. 

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» Alessandro Canale: the man who does keepie uppies on a skateboard – video

Alessandro Canale, known as 'Sandro', impresses fans on his Instagram account with videos of his football skills, often demonstrated on a skateboard. He can frequently be seen riding along with the ball bouncing off his legs, feet and the board itself. Even without the skateboard he has talent to display, with his honed footwork giving him control of any ball.

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» 'Sad and cruel': Megan Rapinoe holds back tears as she speaks on Roe v Wade ruling – video

US women's national team forward Megan Rapinoe described the supreme court ruling overturning Roe v. Wade as "sad and cruel". The Supreme Court has ruled there is no constitutional right to abortion in the United States, upending the landmark Roe v Wade case from nearly 50 years ago. 

'It will completely exacerbate so many of the existing inequalities that we have in our country. It doesn't keep not one single person safer,' she said

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» Sadio Mané 'did not think twice' about joining Bayern Munich – video

Sadio Mané said he did not 'have to think twice' before deciding to join Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich from Liverpool. Mané completed a €40m move on a three-year contract which he signed on a rooftop in the Bavarian city. Mané called Bayern 'the team for me' as he spoke of their style and tactics, and said he hopes they can 'achieve things together'

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» Memphis Depay shows off skills on dirt pitch during community football match in Ghana – video

The Barcelona forward Memphis Depay was in fine form while visiting Ghana. The Dutch international, whose father is Ghanaian, leads several community projects in the west African nation and visits regularly. On his most recent journey, he was invited to play in a friendly match on a dusty pitch in Accra, alongside fellow Netherlands international Quincy Promes.

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» Harry Kane confident about England's World Cup chances: 'We can win it' – video

England captain Harry Kane said that England 'need to be confident' they can win the World Cup in Qatar, as they enter tournament as one of the favourites. Gareth Southgate's side have seen success at their last two tournaments having reached the semi-finals of the 2018 World Cup and  the final of Euro 2020, but England  experienced a drop in form after failing to win any of their four Nations League matches in June. 

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» Australia move on from thrashing as Matildas ride luck in draw with Portugal
  • Portugal 1-1 Australia (Encarnacao 87; Ibini-Isei 73)
  • Goalkeeper Lydia Williams makes two key late saves

The Matildas bounced back from their 7-0 drubbing by Spain at the weekend by claiming a 1-1 draw against Portugal in Estoril, but the improved result still left coach Tony Gustavsson “very disappointed”.

Princess Ibini-Isei came of the bench to put the visitors into the lead on 73 minutes with her first international goal, punishing some earlier profligacy from Portugal. But Gustavsson’s side were denied victory by a late equaliser from Telma Encarnacao as time ran out at the Estadio Antonio Coimbra da Mota.

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» Los Angeles FC hoping Gareth Bale signing will be a ‘long-term partnership’
  • ‘We expect him to be a top, top player for us,’ says co-president
  • Length of Bale’s contract not discussed by John Thorrington

Los Angeles FC are hoping their signing of Gareth Bale will prove a “long-term partnership”.

Wales international Bale revealed on Saturday he had agreed to join the Major League Soccer club following his release by Real Madrid. The 32-year-old had been looking for a new club to maintain his fitness ahead of the World Cup later this year.

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» US Soccer condemns supreme court abortion ruling as UWSNT beat Colombia
  • US win 3-0 in Utah despite missing two penalties
  • Megan Rapinoe had spoken out against Roe v Wade decision
  • USWNT’s home unbeaten streak stretches to 68 games

Sophia Smith scored twice in the second half and the US women’s national team beat Colombia 3-0 on Saturday night to extend their home unbeaten streak to 68 games, but many of the players had a seismic legal ruling on their minds.

Smith scored her first in the 54th minute off a pass from Rose Lavelle when Colombian goalkeeper Catalina Perez came out of her goal. She added her second in the 60th minute. Smith, who plays for the Portland Thorns in the National Women’s Soccer League, has six international goals.

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» Diego Maradona: eight to go on trial in Argentina for homicide

Defendants named in judge’s report include football star’s three doctors, a psychiatrist and two nurses

Eight people who took care of the Argentinian football superstar Diego Maradona will be tried for homicide, according to a ruling released on Wednesday following an investigation into his death from cardiac arrest.

In the 236-page document seen by Reuters, the judge in charge of the case questioned “the behaviours – active or by omission – of each of the accused which led to and contributed to the realisation of the harmful result”.

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» Transgender footballers in Germany can choose men’s or women’s team
  • Football federation rule for youth, futsal and amateur game
  • It applies to transgender, intersex and non-binary players

German football is bucking the recent trend of banning transgender women from women’s competition by allowing transgender, intersex and non-binary players to decide whether to play in men’s or women’s teams.

The German football federation passed a regulation for gender-nonconforming players with the civil status “diverse” or “unspecified” on Thursday.

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» ‘I stumbled across it’: the push to help Tanzania’s untapped football talent

Michael Noone went to Africa looking for a change and now has an academy for boys and girls in one of Tanzania’s poorest areas

When Michael Noone set off on his solo walk from Old Trafford to Wembley stadium on Boxing Day to raise money for his football academy in Tanzania, it wasn’t the first time he had taken a journey into the unknown. A youth coach with experience of working in schools in Manchester, the United States and Canada, the 37-year-old was “looking for a change in my life” when he arrived in east Africa in March 2020.

“I just kind of stumbled across it,” he says. “I came over with just a backpack and had nothing organised so I sort of just wandered around. I started volunteering in this orphanage, joined in a few games and found the football culture unbelievable. I’ve been coaching for many years and I’d played with some guys from east Africa before and they told me that there was so much hugely untapped talent here. So I came almost out of curiosity more than anything I guess …”

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» Eritrea women’s team footballers still in hiding after escaping in Uganda
  • Five players fled before match against Uganda on 2 November
  • More than 60 footballers have escaped Isaias Afwerki’s regime

Five members of Eritrea’s Under-20 women’s team who escaped after playing in a tournament in Uganda last year remain in hiding, the Guardian understands.

According to sources close to the players, the five – Luwam Solomon, Yordanos Abraham, Shamat Futsum, Rahel Michael and Trhas Habate, who are aged between 16 and 19 – are “safe and well” after fleeing hours before their game against the hosts in the Cecafa Women’s Under-20 Championship on 2 November. It is estimated that more than 60 players have used their status as internationals to escape the oppressive regime of the Eritrean president, Isaias Afwerki, since 2009, although this is the first case involving female players.

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» Threat of Fifa ban looms over India and Chhetri’s hopes of passing Messi | John Duerden

Turmoil at India’s FA could lead to ban and the national coach, Igor Stimac, has warned those in charge to ‘wake up’

If Estonia had not conceded five goals to Lionel Messi this month, India’s legendary striker Sunil Chhetri would be second behind Cristiano Ronaldo in the highest active international goalscorers’ list. The 37-year-old has 84, two behind the Argentinian, after scoring four in the just-finished third round of qualification for the 2023 Asian Cup.

That haul helped India win all three games and stroll to a second successive appearance at the continent’s biggest event. Chhetri is a little concerned, however, that he may not be able to participate in the tournament – and not because there is currently no host after China relinquished those duties last month. The worry is that India may be hit with a Fifa ban.

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» Brazil’s Tite: ‘We reached the World Cup – now it’s time to be champions’

The manager discusses the pressure of his job, Neymar’s future and turning down approaches from Real Madrid and PSG

With a few months to the World Cup how are you? How are you managing your anxiety? How am I? I’m expectant but focused. We reached the World Cup; now it’s time to reach the final and be champions. This is the truth. At the last World Cup I was the manager because of other circumstances [Dunga was fired in 2016 and Tite took over]. Now I have had the opportunity to do the full four-year cycle. Expectations are high but the focus is on work.

I have staff with great values and credentials. And an extraordinary family. If I didn’t have my wife [Rosi], I wouldn’t be where I am. I lose my temper, I hit the roof, I don’t sleep at night, just like everyone else. But I have a partner who supports me, a family that supports me. I draw strength from my family, work and spirituality.

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» Cashing in on Phillips and Raphinha gives a club like Leeds no guarantees | Jonathan Wilson

Outside the elite, eventually the best players move on and even with money to spend fresh recruits remain gambles

The good news for Leeds is that last season’s injury crisis means they have had plenty of practice playing without their stars. The bad news is that this time it’s permanent. Kalvin Phillips and Raphinha are both on their way and so Leeds, suddenly but not unpredictably, are cast in the familiar position of a club on the rise seeing their greatest assets are stripped away and needing to rebuild. The inevitability of the pattern is one of the great sadnesses of the financial structures of modern football.

Phillips is 26. He was born in Leeds. He is a Leeds fan. He joined the academy when he was 14. He has played more than 200 league games for the club. But not even the most blinkered Leeds fan could realistically blame him for accepting an offer from Manchester City. He will make far more money, play under one of the greatest coaches ever and be in contention for the most prestigious prizes. Leeds, in fact, may think themselves lucky they were able to keep him for so long.

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» Euro 2022: the complete guide to all the stadiums

All you need to know about the 10 Women’s Euro 2022 stadiums, including history and geography lessons on the home venues

Opened: 2011

England v Norway, 11 July, 8pm

Austria v Norway, 15 July, 8pm

Quarter-final, 20 July, 8pm

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» Can France overcome infighting and ‘scandal’ of Henry’s Euros absence?

Squad’s talent is clear but fallout from club tensions and doubts over coach Corinne Diacre have dampened expectations

Welcome to Moving the Goalposts, the Guardian’s new (and free) women’s football newsletter. Here’s an extract from this week’s edition. To receive the full version once a week, just pop your email in below:

France have one of the best squads at the women’s Euros, yet few expect them to win it. Why? For years they have been dogged by controversies, infighting and intrigue – and the issues refuse to go away.

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» The Fiver | Christian Eriksen, Cristiano Ronaldo and a trickle of United optimism

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Between ‘The Pogumentary’ revelations, that pesky BBC news ticker and the rather desperate Frenkie de Jong saga, it’s fair to say the summer in the red half of Manchester has been a fairly rough one. Even the arrival of Erik ten Hag, who seems both capable and cheery, has failed to change the perception that the famous Red Devils are destined for another nailbiting sixth-place finish next season.

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» Football transfer rumours: Arsenal and Manchester United in for Dybala?

This morning’s tittle-tattle wants new balls, please

The brightest scouts in the business at Manchester United and Arsenal woke up on Monday morning and came up with a cracking idea: signing Paulo Dybala on a free transfer after the elapsing of his contract at Juventus. The diminutive Argentinian has one of the sweetest left foots going and signing the 28-year-old might be too good an opportunity to turn down, if other suitors like Napoli can be fended off.

Both Premier League clubs could probably rather do with a proper No 9 rather than another No 10. Arsenal, at least, have finally announced the capture of Gabriel Jesus after Alexandre Lacazette’s departure to Lyon, but Cristiano Ronaldo is doing his best to fling himself on to a private jet at Manchester Airport marked Do One. The Portuguese informed United on Saturday that while Erik ten Hag seemed nice enough, he fancied playing in the Champions League, although interest isn’t exactly coming in thick and fast for the 37-year-old. Perma-tanned super-agent Jorge Mendes has apparently chatted to Chelsea and Bayern Munich, while there is also talk of a return to Italy, but there are no concrete offers. Yet.

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» There’s only six Ben Davies! Which name is the most common in football? | The Knowledge

Plus: familiar foes at World Cups, more old internationals who broke their goalscoring duck and Rangers’ 394-day season

We’ve covered footballers with identical names playing for the same team before but we’ve yet to delve into the history of professional footballers who have shared the same name. One of the Jamies above is retired, so we’re assuming the question refers to professionals who have shared the same name throughout footballing history. Given how long the sport has been going, we can beat more than four with minimum fuss and, in fact, the first example to trump the above was taken from a period of English football when all of the players were active.

“During the early-to-mid-1990s there were five players with the name Paul Williams active in the Football League,” writes Ed Rostron. “Three of them even had spells at Coventry, though (unfortunately) not at the same time. Paul Williams (born 1965), a forward best known for spells with Charlton, Sheffield Wednesday and Crystal Palace; PW born 1969, a defender who spent a long time at Stockport and Plymouth, with a brief stop at Coventry; PW born 1970, a full-back who made a handful of appearances for Sunderland, Swansea and Doncaster; PW born 1971, a midfielder who had long spells at Derby and Coventry; and PW born 1963, a Northern Irish forward who played for Stockport, WBA, Rochdale and again, briefly, Coventry. A sixth Paul Williams, a defender born in 1962, was a contemporary of the others but made just a solitary appearance for Chelsea in the 1980s.”

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» Taking Football Weekly on the road is like a relaxed evening with old friends | Barry Glendenning

The unique podcast live audiences are unlike any other with the weirdly intense but welcome appetite for sport-related chat

This is Spinal Tap. Well, this is eerily reminiscent of the iconic mock-rockumentary. The five-man lineup from the Guardian’s Football Weekly podcast is doing yet another passable impersonation of David St Hubbins, Nigel Tufnel and chums as we attempt to negotiate a labyrinthine network of dark, prop- and cable-strewn passages, one of which leads from our dressing room to the stage. Having finally found our way, invariably with the help of a patient theatre tech, Max Rushden wanders on stage as the rest of us wait in the wings.

There’s no big announcement or fanfare for our host, who just sidles on. The hubbub of the restless, predominantly male crowd is gradually replaced by cheers and applause. Quite how he does it remains something of a mystery, but within a couple of minutes the mild-mannered presenter once described by a Manchester United fan in the Belgian city of Genk as “everything that is wrong with modern football” has whipped the crowd into a genuinely frothing frenzy. To raucous roars of applause he introduces Producer Joel, who explains the rules – no recordings to protect the sanity of the Guardian lawyers, every man for himself in the event of a fire and a polite request not to ruin the big surprise for future audiences – and introduces everyone else. It’s showtime – let the 90 or so minutes of high-octane, crowd-pleasing football chat begin.

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» Why did the north-east of England not get any Euro 2022 games?

St James’ Park, the Stadium of Light and the Riverside would have been excellent options for this year’s tournament

Welcome to Moving the Goalposts, the Guardian’s new (and free) women’s football newsletter. Here’s an extract from this week’s edition. To receive the full version once a week, just pop your email in below:

The biggest domestic league attendance in the English women’s game last season gathered for a fourth-tier fixture.

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» Who is the oldest footballer to score their first international goal? | The Knowledge

Plus: expensive unused Champions League winners, widely shared armbands and epic seasons

“Andreas Weimann scored his first senior Austria goal against France last week at the age of 30,” notes Niall McVeigh. “Are there any players who were older when breaking their international duck?”

“Italy have at least 13 players who have scored their first international goal after their 30th birthday, Fabio Cannavaro included,” begins Andrea Ferrioli. “Here’s the top three: Marco Materazzi, first goal at 32 years and 307 days old (Czech Republic 0-2 Italy at the 2006 World Cup – his second was in the final); Daniele Massaro, first goal at 33 years and 26 days (Italy 1-1 Mexico at the 1994 World Cup, his only international goal in 15 caps); and Francesco Caputo, first goal at 33 years and 62 days (Italy 6-0 Moldova, a friendly on 7 October 2020).”

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» Football. Golf. Quiz: how much do you know about players who love the links?

See if you can top the leaderboard by taking on these 10 teasers about footballers who can’t wait to get on the golf course

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» David Squires on … legendary dragons taking Wales to the World Cup

Our cartoonist on the choral bangers, Bale heroics and Ukrainian resolve on show during an emotional afternoon in Cardiff

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» Premier League 2021-22 season review: our writers’ best and worst

The best players, most gripping games and finest signings – plus the biggest flops and greatest gripes

Nick Ames Because he deserves the recognition: Son Heung-min. This was not Harry Kane’s finest season, despite a big uptick in its second half, but Son’s brilliance ensured that ultimately mattered little. Mohamed Salah had looked nailed on for this until the last couple of months and still needs mentioning, as does Kevin De Bruyne; his performance at Wolves, which I was fortunate to report on, was mindblowing and an already supreme Manchester City are transformed when he is at his best.

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» Premier League 2021-22 season review: our predictions versus reality

Before the season began we predicted where all 20 clubs would finish. We were right about two of them – which beats last year

What we said before the season: “The signing of Jack Grealish has made Manchester City look even more formidable and Harry Kane could yet jump on the juggernaut. Pep Guardiola’s vision for the season is for domestic domination to roll on and for City to claim a first European Cup.”

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» Premier League 2021-22 review: the big quiz of the season

Who was sacked? Who made the difference? Who had to go?

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» Premier League 2021-22 review: players of the season

We select a few contenders for the Premier League’s player of the season – and invite you to have your say

In curling his first goal of the season beyond the outstretched arm of the Norwich goalkeeper Tim Krul, Salah became the first player to score in the opening game of five consecutive Premier League campaigns. At the time he could have had no idea that, on the final day of the campaign, Liverpool would have already won two domestic cups, booked their place in the Champions League final and still be in contention for the title.

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» Premier League 2021-22 review: flops of the season

We select a few contenders for the Premier League’s flop of the season – and invite you to have your say

It is difficult writing lists that point out individual failings, so it is quite pleasing how bad Manchester United have been across the board. On the player front Fred, Cristiano Ronaldo and David de Gea escape with their reputations relatively intact. The summer recruits Jadon Sancho and Raphaël Varane have struggled to fit in, which is quite difficult in such a poor team. Ole Gunnar Solskjær could not get much of a tune out of the squad and Ralf Rangnick has arguably been worse. England’s Harry Maguire and Marcus Rashford have endured a miserable time. Maguire has looked off the pace and was dropped for the April defeat by Arsenal. Rashford has come off the bench more times than he has started in the league, resulting in four goals in 25 appearances. Even the catering at Old Trafford is not up to scratch. The BT Sport presenter Jake Humphrey tweeted a photo of his offering – scrambled egg and mash potato – to rightful derision. Good luck, Mr Ten Hag.

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» Premier League 2021-22 review: the season’s best photos

Our photo editor selects his favourite frames – including epic celebrations, crunching tackles and a bizarre banner featuring the ‘Moyesiah’

This season we’ve received more than 800,000 Premier League pictures from staff, agency and freelance photographers. Here are some of the most emotive, arresting and creative images which capture the narrative of another memorable top-flight campaign.


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» Premier League 2021-22 review: goals of the season

We select a few contenders for the Premier League’s goal of the season – and invite you to have your say

We expect the ridiculous from Salah, but when he picked up possession outside the box, wide on the right, back to goal, and with João Cancelo feeling his collar, there looked nothing on. So Salah spun his man then, while absorbing a shove from Phil Foden, rolled studs over the ball to take him outside the next. Bernardo Silva was later found in lost property. Even then only a cross looked on, so Salah swayed inside, enticing Aymeric Laporte to follow, before dipping outside to snap an expert’s finish into his favourite far-post side-netting. It was a goal that only he could score, the skill, speed and composure an act of audacious impossibility, like painting a fresco on a rollercoaster.

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» Premier League 2021-22 review: gripes of the season

Bending the Covid rules, drug use in the stands and social media disgraces all stuck in the craw this season

An argument for cryptocurrencies, the blockchain and non-fungible tokens is that they may one day democratise finance, and place wealth in the hands of those who previously had little access to resources. An alternative argument is that it’s all a Ponzi scheme where all but a select few will lose their shirt. Recent crashes in the crypto market suggest the latter is the more likely. Still, there’s money to be made in the interim, and football’s unrelenting lust for get-rich-quick schemes makes it an ideal breeding ground for crypto-wibble. It’s become ubiquitous. VAR in Serie A is sponsored by a crypto exchange, Manchester City signed up and then hurriedly binned a crypto partner that had no digital footprint, Paul Pogba flogged “dragon eggs” and then John Terry got in a bit of lumber for shilling NFTs that included official logos he didn’t have permission to use.

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» Premier League 2021-22 review: pundits of the season

From Roy Keane’s rants to Clinton Morrison’s wardrobe the pundits have been busy creating and dividing opinion again

Welcome to the Guardian’s review of the 2021-22 Premier League season. We have nominated some contenders for this category to get the discussion going

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» Premier League 2021-22 review: matches of the season

We select a few contenders for the Premier League’s match of the season – and invite you to have your say

“It was a wild ride,” said Jürgen Klopp after a pulsating draw. He wasn’t wrong. Liverpool had their feathers ruffled and more, going behind in the 27th minute as Ethan Pinnock finished a smart move involving Ivan Toney. The futuristic little Community Stadium almost rattled out of its foundations and didn’t stop shaking. A few moments later Diogo Jota headed home to make it 1-1. When Mohamed Salah gave Liverpool the lead with his 100th goal for the club the expectation was that Klopp’s side would gain control. Brentford had other ideas, throwing caution to the wind and bombarding Liverpool’s penalty area until, finally, Vitaly Janelt equalised. It felt like a cup tie. A deflected Curtis Jones strike sent the away fans into raptures in the 67th minute and, when Salah went clean through 10 minutes later, a 4-2 victory looked inevitable only for the Egyptian to loft over wastefully. On came Yoane Wissa to seal a famous draw with a feather-toed finish over Alisson.

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» Premier League 2021-22 review: young players of the season

We select a few contenders for the Premier League’s young player of the season – and invite you to have your say

These days, it’s a bad day to be a left-back when Arsenal come to town. Whether you view the Gunners’ season as a failure or one of improvement, there is no doubt that this has been the one where Saka, despite his tender age, has become the club’s talisman. There are few players in the league, perhaps the world, with the Ealing-born winger’s poise and balance, and the beauty of his dribbling off the right flank is that he is just as happy to drive to the byline on his right foot as he is keen to cut inside on his left. Saka is intelligent on the pitch, eloquent off it, and Arsenal are lucky to have someone so fiercely loyal to the club. What is frightening is how much better he could become, especially if Arsenal invest in a proper striker and a right-back capable of overlapping and creating more space for Saka.

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» Has Raheem Sterling reached his ceiling? What Manchester City need is certainty | Jonathan Wilson

For all his goal scoring ability, Pep Guardiola cannot trust his forward to deliver at clutch moments in the biggest games

Raheem Sterling made a dart in behind Vincent Kompany to receive an angled pass from Luis Suárez. His first touch, with the outside of his right foot, took him outside the line of the right-hand post, some 12 yards from goal, with Kompany and Joe Hart between him and the net. He turned back inside, opening an angle to curl a left-footed finish between Hart and Pablo Zabaleta into the bottom corner. Hart shuffled and Kompany closed in, only for Sterling to jink back and roll the ball through an implausibly large gap into the right side of the goal.

That was the opener in Liverpool’s 3-2 win over Manchester City in April 2014 but what makes it memorable was not just that it was a vital goal in the title race, rather the way Sterling conjured space where none had seemed to exist. It was that goal, more than anything, that led to the inflated expectations on Sterling going into the World Cup.

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» Women’s Euro 2022 team guide No 3: Northern Ireland

The first-time qualifiers will be underdogs in Group A but Kenny Shiels’ side have already overcome the odds to get there

This article is part of the Guardian’s Women’s Euro 2022 Experts’ Network, a cooperation between some of the best media organisations from the 16 countries who have qualified. is running previews from two countries each day in the run-up to the tournament kicking off on 6 July.

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» Martin Bengtsson: football’s Swedish wonderkid whose dream died at Inter | Louise Taylor

The story of a player who went to Milan full of hope and departed in the grip of depression is told in a compelling film

If Martin Bengtsson feels stressed he kicks a football around on his own and, almost immediately, the tension begins to ebb away. “Nowadays I play for meditation,” he says. “I have a very natural and close relationship with the ball; we still have a good rapport.”

Bengtsson is 36 but, 20 years ago, his first touch was so seamlessly adhesive that opponents could have been forgiven for believing he and footballs were inseparable. The then Sweden youth international was such a gifted midfielder that he was swiftly snapped up by Internazionale’s academy; which is where everything went wrong.

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» The Neymar Identity: football’s first real career commodity-player | Barney Ronay

PSG forward is reportedly set for an automatic contract extension to 2027 on 1 July, a new twist on the modern game

“We no longer want flashy, bling-bling. It’s the end of sequins.” No, not the sequins. How about diamanté? What is the official position, Nasser al-Khelaifi, president of Paris Saint-Germain, on the embroidered epaulette?

In an interview with Le Parisien this week, Khelaifi took the chance to outline his vision of a new utilitarian PSG: a PSG staffed by hungry, flat-faced hair-shirt men who look like David May with toothache.

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» Next Generation 2021: 60 of the best young talents in world football

From ‘the next Alphonso Davies’ to Dortmund’s Moukoko, we pick 60 of the most talented players born in 2004. Check the progress of class of 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015

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» Next Generation 2021: 20 of the best talents at Premier League clubs

We pick the best youngsters at each club born between 1 September 2004 and 31 August 2005*, an age band known as first-year scholars. Check the progress of class of 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016

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» From Jadon Sancho to Alexander Isak: what happened to Next Generation 2016?

With the Next Generation 2021 picks out this week we look at the final updates for the class of 2016. How did they fare?

There was a time when going abroad wasn’t cool. It was a time when British footballers stayed at home, worried about how they might fare in Europe and beyond.

Gary Lineker helped to break the mould with his switch – and success – at Barcelona in the 1980s but Ian Rush’s struggles at Juventus around the same time seemed to put off many players.

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