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Adur Athletic Ladies »
Loose Lane, Sompting, West Sussex
Adult Female
Albion Community Women's »
Falmer, Brighton, East Sussex
Adult Female
Eastbourne Borough Ladies »
Priory Lane, Langney, Eastbourne
Adult Female
Eastbourne Ladies »
Sevenoaks Road, Eastbourne, East Sussex
Adult Female
University Of Brighton Ladies »
Falmer, Brighton, East Sussex
Adult Female
Worthing Minors Ladies »
Sackville Rd, Worthing, West Sussex
Adult Female
Worthing Town Ladies »
Adult Female

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Football News

» Lorenzo Insigne in X-rated argument with fan as FC Toronto nightmare continues
Lorenzo Insigne has struggled to deliver since being made one of the MLS' highest-paid players in July, with the Italian involved in an altercation with a fan on Saturday
» Real Madrid 'send scout' to Newcastle vs PSG to watch three players
Real Madrid are set to send chief scout Juni Calafat to St James' Park to watch three players in action when Newcastle take on Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League on Wednesday
» Man Utd shoot down Aston Villa after late drama in WSL opener - 5 talking points
Manchester United travelled to Villa Park to face Aston Villa Women in the opening match of the Women's Super League season, and while it took a while to warm up, there was no shortage of late drama
» Jerome Boateng ready for shock Bayern Munich return after court verdict overturned
Former Manchester City, Lyon and Germany centre-back Jerome Boateng looks set to make an emotional return to the Allianz Arena two years after waving farewell to Bavaria
» Premier League faces questions as blundering VAR duo BOTH worked in UAE on Thursday
Darren England, Dan Cook and Michael Oliver all worked at a game in the United Arab Emirates on Thursday, before travelling back for Tottenham's clash with Liverpool
» Erik ten Hag's thoughts on Marcus Rashford's role in Man Utd's early season struggles
Erik ten Hag has delivered his opinion on Marcus Rashford's form with the Manchester United man failing to find the net once again during the defeat against Crystal Palace
» Jadon Sancho pictured at Man Utd’s training ground during match as exile continues
Jadon Sancho has been frozen out by Erik ten Hag at Manchester United but was pictured at their training ground whilst his fellow team-mates played at Old Trafford
» Ivan Toney deserves a big transfer - Arsenal target does not owe Brentford any loyalty
ROBBIE FOWLER COLUMN: Ivan Toney has been linked with moves to the likes of Arsenal and Chelsea and the Brentford striker deserves a chance at a bigger club
» Erik ten Hag can't ignore Man Utd supporters' fury after his major Crystal Palace error
Manchester United have been plunged into further crisis by Saturday's defeat to Crystal Palace, with the pressure ramping up on boss Erik ten Hag from angry fans
» Aston Villa wear controversial shirts in WSL opener vs Man Utd after surprise decision
The Women's Super League returned to action on Sunday as Aston Villa Women hosted last season's runners-up Manchester United
» Ange Postecoglou has stuck by two promises to fans and turned Tottenham right around
New Tottenham boss Ange Postecoglou has the North London side challenging right at the top of the Premier League table after the former Celtic man's great start to life after his arrival
» Paul Scholes' son blasts Man Utd flops in scathing post after Crystal Palace defeat
Manchester United lost their fourth Premier League game of the season after falling to a 1-0 defeat at home to Crystal Palace, turning up the heat on Erik ten Hag
» Declan Rice hails "special" talent who Arsenal team-mates all want to "succeed so much"
Declan Rice saw fellow summer signing Kai Havertz get his first Arsenal goal in the win over Bournemouth on Saturday following several weeks of criticism for the German
» Howard Webb is not making VAR and referees better - it feels like they are getting worse
Luis Diaz's disallowed goal during Tottenham vs Liverpool is one of the worst mistakes VAR has made since its arrival in the Premier League and it had nothing to do with the technology - but rather the dreadful failure of those using it and referee Simon Hooper's fear at going against protocol
» Erik ten Hag sack fears escalate after humiliating Man Utd defeat sets unwanted record
Manchester United have made their worst start to a season for 34 years as they suffered their fourth Premier League defeat of the campaign against Crystal Palace
» Ray Parlour's solution for Arsenal problem as Gunners eye January transfer swoop
Arsenal legend Ray Parlour believes Brentford striker Ivan Toney is the perfect man to boost his former club's firepower when the transfer window re-opens in January
» Cristian Romero tells Alexis Mac Allister to "cry" as Liverpool star escalates ref row
Alexis Mac Allister and Cristian Romero clashed on Instagram following Liverpool's controversial 2-1 defeat to Tottenham on Saturday which sparked a huge debate over VAR
» Gary Neville claims ref looked sick on unseen footage after Tottenham v Liverpool decision
Gary Neville has provided unseen insight from the gantry as referee Simon Hooper reacted to Luis Diaz's controversial offside strike as Liverpool were denied an opening goal
» Premier League take action as VAR from Liverpool howler discovers punishment
Darren England and Dan Cook have been replaced as officials on Sunday's fixture between Nottingham Forest and Brentford and Fulham's clash with Chelsea on Monday
» Liverpool VAR howler: Step-by-step breakdown of what went wrong at Stockley Park
Liverpool were thwarted by VAR on Saturday night with the PGMOL later issuing an apology for disallowing Luis Diaz's goal after a serious error by those at Stockley Park
» Gary Lineker proved spot on with Jurgen Klopp claim after Tottenham vs Liverpool drama
An error by VAR official Darren England denied Liverpool what should've been a goal against Tottenham, sparking uproar throughout the Premier League on Saturday
» Sir Alex Ferguson U-turned on strict Man Utd rule that caused dressing room feud
Sir Alex Ferguson had plenty of successes in the transfer market as Manchester United manager but one particular decision caused chaos and a major falling out at Old Trafford
» VAR official wrongly thought Liverpool goal had been awarded in humiliating PGMOL mistake
PGMOL were forced to hold their hands up and admit a "significant human error" after Luis Diaz wrongly had a goal disallowed for Liverpool due to a breakdown in communication between the referee and VAR
» Two football fans arrested by police after appearing to mock death of Bradley Lowery
South Yorkshire Police have arrested two men on the alleged offence of outraging public decency after appearing to mock the defeat of Sunderland fan Bradley Lowery, who died of cancer

Other sport news:

» Women’s Super League clockwatch: all the latest from the season openers – live

1 min: Aston Villa 0-0 Man Utd Peep peep! Hayley Ladd passes the ball to Katie Zelem, and the 2023-24 season is up and running.

Aston Villa v Man Utd The players are on the field. Before the match they will be a minute’s silence in memory of Maddy Cusack, who died last week aged 27.

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» Nottingham Forest v Brentford: Premier League – live

2 mins. Anthony Elanga has forced Aaron Hickey into a yellow card-conceding challenge already as the pair contest a high ball. The Scot cannot believe it, but he was holding Elanga. Free-kick for Forest in a decent spot.

Brentford emerge in a grey and peppermint away number, Forest are in their usual red and white. A minute’s silence for Maddy Cusack, then a rendition of Mull of Kintyre. And we’re off.

I am ‘betting’ on a Forest win simply Beecause Brentford seem totally out of sorts at the mo, whereas Stevie’s boys always seem to find something. Bet you I win the bet ! Double or quits if not...

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» Ange Postecoglou’s charisma and risk-taking has Tottenham dreaming | Jonathan Wilson

Early days but the Tottenham Stadium swings with an excitement not felt in years, and all thanks to the Australian

How good could this get? What is the realistic ceiling of Tottenham’s aspirations now? After one of the most unexpected and dramatic days of Premier League football in recent memory, almost unnoticed amid the fury over Luis Díaz’s incorrectly disallowed goal and the two Liverpool red cards, Spurs lie second in the table, still unbeaten. And at the end, striding unflustered through the sulphur and the chaos, there was Ange Postecoglou to point out his side should have varied their attack more against depleted opponents but not to worry because these are still early days.

And they are early days. Tottenham’s 2-1 win over Liverpool on Saturday was only their seventh league game under Postecoglou but already he has generated more memories, more moments that will be recalled fondly in 20 or 30 years, than his three predecessors combined. The doubt 10 days ago was that Spurs hadn’t played anyone of any note yet, that it’s one thing to see off a sickly Manchester United or outplay Bournemouth or thrash Burnley or score twice in injury time to beat Sheffield United, quite another to do it against an in-form member of the elite.

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» VAR officials guilty of ‘human error’ for Luis Díaz strike stood down from duties
  • VAR Darren England and assistant Dan Cook dropped
  • PGMOL admit Liverpool were wrongly denied goal at Spurs

The video assistant referee and assistant VAR guilty for the glaring error which prevented Liverpool from opening the scoring in their 2-1 defeat at Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday have been dropped from matches this week, capping another humiliating weekend for Professional Game Match Officials Ltd (PGMOL).

Darren England, the VAR, and Dan Cook, the AVAR, have been removed from duties at Nottingham Forest v Brentford on Sunday and Fulham v Chelsea on Monday, respectively. England was due to be the fourth official at the City Ground and Cook the assistant referee at Craven Cottage.

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» Panathinaikos fans’ ‘Free the boys’ banner a stark reminder of dark forces

A shocking affront to their neighbours AEK Athens is further evidence of rising far-right activity at football across Europe

The boos that echoed from three-quarters of Leoforos Alexandras Stadium could not blank out the message held up by the small but inescapable minority. As Panathinaikos and the visiting AEK Athens entered the field for Monday’s derby a 40-metre banner was unfurled by the home ultras group, Gate 13, to a backdrop of billowing green and blue smoke. “Free the boys,” it read, and the reaction from all sides left no doubt that its meaning had resonated.

While Gate 13’s fellow supporters aired their disgust, the AEK players headed back to the touchline. This was a shocking affront to one of their own and they knew it. In August, more than 100 supporters, 96 from the notorious Bad Blue Boys group that follows Dinamo Zagreb, were detained in the Greek capital in connection with violence that led to the fatal stabbing of Michalis Katsouris, a 29-year-old AEK fan. A further nine were arrested in Zagreb last week.

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» Powerhouse Chelsea lead the WSL pack but the gap is closing

Emma Hayes’s side remain the team to beat as Arsenal, United and City try to plot a way to derail them

Football is littered with teams that write themselves into sport folklore – the dynasties who dominate and pave the way for others. On the women’s side, there is Vic Akers’ quadruple-winning Arsenal (2006-2007). The imperious Barcelona, who have won four straight league titles and two Women’s Champions League trophies. Then, of course, there is Emma Hayes’s dominant Chelsea.

With four successive league titles (six in total), three consecutive FA Cups (five in total) and a couple of League Cups, Chelsea remain the team to beat and with the new Women’s Super League campaign starting on Sunday the question is whether anyone can topple them.

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» Manchester United booed off after Crystal Palace’s Andersen piles on pain

Erik ten Hag will have to discard the buzzword Manchester United’s manager came into this game citing. “Momentum” is now obliterated after a defeat that ends a run of victories at two as, yet again, his men must regroup, this time for Galatasaray’s visit on Tuesday in the Champions League.

United have lost four of their seven first league games. This last occurred in 1989-90, the season in which the infamous “Ta Ra Fergie” banner was held up at a match in December to demand that Alex Ferguson be sacked. The Scot was not, of course, but Ten Hag will know he has to stem the serial losses or his job will be in danger; his team have scored a paltry seven times and have a goal difference of minus four.

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» Wolves stun Manchester City as Hwang wrecks champions’ perfect league start

Last weekend footage of a Sheffield United supporter engrossed in a book at 7-0 down went viral and before kick-off here a fan was turning the pages of a title called Best New Horror. For Pep Guardiola, observing events from the directors’ box because of a one-match touchline ban, it was probably something close to that as Manchester City suffered a shock defeat at Wolves, their flawless start to defending their crown coming to an abrupt end. The only reading material Guardiola is likely to consume before switching his focus to Wednesday’s Champions League trip to Leipzig is his staff’s analysis of why things unravelled.

A couple of minutes before kick-off Guardiola took his position in the front row of the executive area, sandwiched between Manel Estiarte, City’s head of player support, and Txiki Begiristain, their director of football. It was there where Guardiola clenched both fists when Julián Álvarez pulled City level with a stunning free-kick, whipped into the top corner. José Sá, the Wolves goalkeeper, got his right hand to it but was powerless to prevent the ball spinning in. Wolves led inside 13 minutes via a Rúben Dias own goal and Guardiola looked on sternly when the hosts regained the lead midway through the second half through Hwang Hee-chan. Kyle Walker tried in vain to head the ball clear on the goalline.

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» Chelsea’s faith in Mauricio Pochettino unwavering as slump grinds on

There is comfort in numbers showing manager is pushing young squad in right direction as he prepares to visit Fulham

The mood inside Chelsea is calmer than you might imagine. Instead of panicking after another summer of heavy spending with an underwhelming start to the season, they have looked beyond the results, studied the data and concluded that the situation will improve – if they hold their nerve.

There is comfort to be found in numbers indicating that Mauricio Pochettino is pushing this young, expensively assembled squad in the right direction. While Chelsea are stuck in the bottom half of the Premier League table before they meet Fulham on Monday after picking up five points from their first six games, more than one statistical model suggests they should be much higher.

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» Steve Cooper is an inspiration for newly promoted strugglers – and Chelsea too | Jonathan Wilson

Forest manager and his team have flourished despite an owner whose ambitions seem unchecked by reality – sound familiar?

How, you wonder, did the chat between Chelsea’s directors go after their 1-0 defeat by Nottingham Forest at Stamford Bridge on 2 September? Perhaps there had been some thought that by signing 28 players over the past three transfer windows they had destabilised the club, made the life of their manager harder. Could that be possible?

Then maybe somebody asked how many Forest had signed in the same period. “You’re not going to believe this,” some lackey perhaps replied. “They signed 43.” To which the only possible conclusion for Todd Boehly and Behdad Eghbali is that they should have signed more players.

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» Luton gain first Premier League victory to pile more misery on Everton

Wild celebrations in one small corner of an otherwise deserted Goodison Park encapsulated a momentous, historic day for Luton. For the first time since April 1992, when Brian Stein and Mark Pembridge scored in a 2-0 win over Aston Villa, they had a top-flight victory to savour after inflicting fresh torment on clueless Everton. And relish it they did.

“It is an amazing day for the supporters, they deserve it and the board deserve it too,” said Rob Edwards, the Luton manager after goals from Tom Lockyer and Carlton Morris, both from Alfie Doughty set-pieces, produced the club’s first win in the Premier League.

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» Lionel Messi misses third straight game as Inter Miami playoff hopes take hit
  • Messi misses match on Saturday with persistent leg injury
  • Inter Miami salvage 1-1 draw with Avilés goal in stoppage time
  • Fans of club bristling at skyrocketing ticket prices for 2024

Here’s how it goes for Inter Miami right now when it comes to the injured Lionel Messi: The team keeps saying he might play, and then he doesn’t play.

That pattern held true again Saturday, when the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner was scratched from the lineup for a matchup against New York City FC – a game with significant Major League Soccer playoff implications for both clubs. Messi has a leg injury, the severity of which has not been revealed by Inter Miami.

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» Police investigate after football fans appear to mock death of Bradley Lowery
  • Sheffield Wednesday condemn ‘deplorable’ behaviour
  • Sunderland and England mascot died aged six in 2017

Police are investigating after two Sheffield Wednesday fans appeared to mock the death of football mascot Bradley Lowery during a match against his favourite team.

The six-year-old Sunderland fan, who struck up a close friendship with the team’s striker Jermain Defoe after being diagnosed with neuroblastoma, died in 2017 having helped raise more than £1m for charity.

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» Championship roundup: West Brom hit four to end Preston’s unbeaten start
  • Ipswich go top as late Williams equaliser earns point
  • Norwich bounce back with 2-0 win over Birmingham

Preston’s unbeaten Championship run came to an abrupt end at a rain-soaked Deepdale as they were beaten 4-0 by West Brom.

After six wins and two draws, North End were comprehensively dispatched by an impressive Baggies side. Goals from Darnell Furlong, Alex Mowatt, Matt Phillips and Kyle Bartley gave West Brom a third win of the season, lifting them to within three points of the play-off places.

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» Kai Havertz off the mark as Arsenal breeze past winless Bournemouth

There had been times, even at such an early point in his Arsenal career, when the unrelenting scrutiny that accompanies a £65m price tag was a visible millstone around Kai Havertz’s neck. His teammates knew it and, on an afternoon that could hardly have gone more smoothly from their perspective, decided to lighten the load. A one-sided match was already half-won when Ryan Christie lunged messily at Martin Ødegaard eight minutes after half-time, giving them their second penalty and a chance to move out of sight. Bukayo Saka placed the ball but, to cheers from the away support, promptly elected to step aside.

Up walked Havertz and, even if the day’s stakes were relatively low by this point, a neutral might have felt a flutter of anxiety on his behalf. He has not played badly since making the inherently risky move from Chelsea, primarily to operate in midfield, but even a cod body language analyst would have been justified in observing a lack of confidence around opposition 18-yard boxes. Fluffing his lines here could have opened a fresh can of worms but he sent Neto the wrong way unfussily and, with Gabriel Magalhães as chief cheerleader, was encouraged to milk the faithful’s acclaim.

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» Bowen and Soucek ease West Ham to victory against insipid Sheffield United

The strange thing was that none of Sheffield United’s players even tried to rattle West Ham. Paul Heckingbottom’s side were insipid beyond belief on an afternoon devoid of drama and intensity, their defensive foundations crumbling under the slightest pressure, and it said little for their hopes of staying up that they were so easily swatted aside by opponents who spent the second half protecting their legs before visiting Freiburg in the Europa League on Thursday.

West Ham were playing the game on their terms by that stage, goals from Jarrod Bowen and Tomas Soucek inside the opening 37 minutes allowing them to save their energy for tougher assignments. If there were positives for Sheffield United, who remain bottom after earning one point from their opening seven games, it was only that they did not lose by more.

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» Miguel Almirón stunner sets Newcastle on their way to victory over Burnley

On Wednesday night, the Champions League anthem will flood the senses here, Kylian Mbappé may or may not be fit to lead Paris Saint-Germain’s attack and Eddie Howe can, once again, confound the doubters.

Newcastle’s manager has exceeded so many expectations in such a tight time frame on Tyneside that it is easy to forget it is almost exactly 11 years since he resigned as Burnley’s manager after a brief spell in east Lancashire.

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» Women’s Super League 2023-24 previews No 12: West Ham

The Hammers need stability and they hope their new coach, Rehanne Skinner, is the right person to take a young squad forward

Another season, another head coach through the door in east London as managerial turnover strikes once again at West Ham. It is the second successive season that the Hammers have been left looking for a manager and the hope will be that this time they’ve got it right.

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» Women’s Super League 2023-24 previews No 11: Tottenham

Spurs have appointed the Swedish coach Robert Vilahamn and hope to avoid getting dragged into a relegation fight once again

Things did not go to plan for Tottenham last term. The high of a fifth-placed finish in Rehanne Skinner’s first season was not backed up as Spurs flirted with relegation for two thirds of the 2022-23 campaign. Nine straight defeats eventually did for Skinner as she was relieved of her duties in March.

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» Women’s Super League 2023-24 previews No 10: Manchester United

Marc Skinner has lost Alessia Russo and Ona Batlle but has a tantalising array of attacking options and the best goalkeeper in the world

It’s unlikely anyone will say it out loud even if they believe it, but consolidation. Like their male counterparts, Manchester United are hampered by the Glazers’ avaricious ownership and as such, chances are they will always be chasing better-funded rivals. No team can expect to win the big pots after first losing a player as brilliant as Lauren James, who departed in 2021, then two more of similar quality in Ona Batlle and Alessia Russo, who left this summer.

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» Women’s Super League 2023-24 previews No 9: Manchester City

A team studded with England internationals need to kick on and secure European qualification after last season’s near miss

To improve on last season’s fourth place and challenge for the WSL title. If missing out on Champions League qualification on goal difference last term hurt, Gareth Taylor and his players could cite mitigating circumstances. The summer of 2022 proved turbulent at the Etihad campus with four leading City lights exiting stage left and another retiring. While England’s Lucy Bronze and Keira Walsh defected to Barcelona, their international teammate Georgia Stanway departed for Bayern Munich and Ellen White, the Lionesses’ record goalscorer, hung up her boots. By then Scotland’s Caroline Weir had also already left for Real Madrid. Given that context, a top-four place represented respectability.

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» ‘I’m at peace’: England globetrotter Jodie Taylor calls time on career

Former Arsenal striker, who scored at two World Cups, played for 17 clubs in six countries and won the Champions League

When Jodie Taylor was at primary school she drew a picture of herself playing for Liverpool. “I was eight or nine and that was my dream,” says the former England striker. “It was for the men’s side; I didn’t know girls could have their own teams. But I just knew I wanted to be a professional footballer.”

That ambition would result in Taylor representing 17 clubs in six countries, spread across three continents. Throw in her collection of 51 England caps, the bronze medal from the 2015 World Cup in Canada, the Golden Boot from the 2017 European Championship in the Netherlands and a Champions League winner’s medal acquired with Lyon, and it is clear she has much to be proud of.

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» ‘They want to give our pitch to boys’: girls’ football team fight to take up space

East London’s Vicky Park Rangers under-13s are mounting a legal challenge after being turfed out

Vicky Park Rangers under-13s had a crunch game on Saturday. If the girls were going to top the league, it was a must-win fixture against last season’s champions.

Preparations for the game had been far from ideal. A week after starting training on the Stepney Green astroturf, the council told them their time slot – which they shared with four other teams at Vicky Park Rangers, a grassroots club for 120 girls in east London – had been reallocated to a boys’ club.

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» West Ham’s Hawa Cissoko: ‘Some people are just racist and find every opportunity to be racist’

Defender on how she coped with last season’s trolling, feeling harshly treated by officials and wanting to become a referee

‘If I turn off my phone, they don’t exist,” says the West Ham defender Hawa Cissoko of the racist online trolls who have bombarded her social media accounts. That is her solution, to switch off and ignore, but she thinks social media companies need to do more to protect players from racist abuse.

“I know that some people send messages because they know that nothing is going to happen even if you tell them you’re going to the police,” she says. “They know nothing will happen. We need more security … I don’t know how they can do it.”

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» Lee Kang-in targets a prize greater than glory in the Asian Games

Military exemption is as big a prize as the gold medal up for grabs for Paris Saint-Germain’s South Korean star

For Son Heung-min in 2018, read Lee Kang-in in 2023. Five years ago, Tottenham Hotspur reluctantly released their South Korea forward to participate in the Asian Games and he arrived in Indonesia midway through the tournament to lead the team to gold. This month, Paris Saint-Germain belatedly allowed Lee to fly to China and the midfielder arrived just before the group stage ended ready to help the team go all the way once more. The reason why big clubs from the capitals of England and France and elsewhere have allowed such talent to leave when they are not obliged to by Fifa is the same: the South Korean government grants military exemption to those who win gold at the Games.

The pressure was greater on Son because 2018 was his last chance before turning 28, the age by which all able-bodied men must report for duty that usually lasts between 18 and 21 months. The following year he would have had to return home. At 22, Lee has more time but the Asian Games, which Korea also won in 2014, offers by far the best chance of cutting those 18 months or so down to 544 hours of community service and the best chance of continuing a career at the top of European football (any medal at the Olympics works but that has been achieved only once, in 2012).

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» The Guardian Football Weekly Book: Ben Fisher’s car parks of British football

In an extract from the new book, our reporter, revealed as an expert on club car parks ever since his famously gripping story about facilities at Newport County, chooses five favourites

Even the billionaire riches of American businessman Bill Foley have not changed the modest car park to the rear of the corrugated iron – and temporary – South Stand, erected in 2013. Until then, the ground was three-sided, à la Oxford United’s Kassam Stadium. Premier League premiums do not apply here: fans pay just £1 for the privilege of parking directly behind the stand named after the former Bournemouth and Manchester United striker Ted MacDougall. Away supporters’ coaches pull into the car park, also used by television outside-broadcast trucks, to drop off fans a couple of hours before kick-off. A typically warm Dorset welcome is guaranteed.

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» Girona are top of La Liga for the first time in history. But this is not chance | Sid Lowe

As the 41st club to conclude a round on top of Spain’s top flight, Girona again showed they are very good at football

“We know this isn’t normal,” said Aleix García and yet, he insisted, nor was it chance. Either way, it was historic. At 8.20pm on 27 September 2023, the other García, Eric, headed in the goal that put their team into the lead against Villarreal, on course for another win, to carry them above Real Madrid, above Barcelona and above everyone else. This isn’t supposed to happen, but it had. On the long bus journey home, heading up the east coast in the dark, even the manager admitted he had scrolled through his phone and taken the screengrab that proved it. Pop to the kiosko on Thursday morning, if he could find one, and there it is to cut out and keep: Girona Futbol Club are top of the league.

The city with the best restaurant in the world now has the best football team in Spain. Maybe even in Europe: across the five biggest leagues, no one has more points than Girona and no one is more excited to be there. “Euphoric,” Eric García said, and why not? The last team to reach primera – the club that only got there in 2017 and were gone again two years later – and the team that returned just 15 months ago, stand at the top of it for the first time ever.

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» 'It doesn't help': Jürgen Klopp and Ange Postecoglou reflect on VAR errors – video

The referees’ governing body in England admitted a 'significant human error' after Luis Díaz had a goal ruled offside in Liverpool’s 2-1 defeat at Tottenham. After the match, Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp said 'I don't understand why the people in VAR are that much under pressure. Today the decision was made really quick, I would say, for that goal.' Tottenham manager Ange Postecoglou however was more forgiving, saying 'I think that people are under the misconception that VAR is going to be errorless … it's down to interpretation and they're still human beings. They're going to make mistakes'.

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» Mexican football match halted by pitch-invading dog that steals the ball – video

A football match in Mexico's second division between Alebrijes Oaxaca and Dorados had to be stopped after a dog ran on to the pitch and stole the ball. Alebrijes were winning the game 4-0 when the dog entered the field in the final minutes and ran off with the ball. The match was eventually finished, with Alebrijes posting on social media to confirm the safety of the dog, calling them 'our new best friend'

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» 'We have suffered': Spain women speak on struggles after Rubiales scandal – video

Spain's Aitana Bonmatí and Mariona Caldentey have spoken about their struggles and said they are looking forward to focusing on football after weeks of controversy following their World Cup victory. 'We weren't getting enough sleep, we couldn't rest well, we suffered from stress and anxiety,' said Bonmatí. 'Things are getting more calm eventually and now we're 100% focused on football.' The players also spoke about their desire to leave a legacy for women going forward. 'This is a global fight and all the women and players own it,' said Caldentey

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» 'I've got no idea': Postecoglou confused about handball rule after Romero penalty – video

The Tottenham manager, Ange Postecoglou, says he does not understand the handball rule after his side's 2-2 Premier League draw against north London rivals Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium. Cristian Romero conceded a penalty in the second half after a shot from Arsenal's Ben White was hit into the ground before rearing up and striking the defender's hand. Bukayo Saka converted from the spot for Arsenal's second goal before the Tottenham captain, Son Heung-min, immediately responded to draw the visitors level.

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» 'Unacceptable things happened': Putellas and Paredes call for zero tolerance on abuse – video

Spain's Alexia Putellas and Irene Paredes demanded 'zero tolerance' for abuses after La Roja’s World Cup win was overshadowed by the unsolicited kiss planted on the footballer Jenni Hermoso by the country’s former football chief Luis Rubiales. The uproar over Rubiales’s behaviour laid bare the players’ longstanding fight for equality; a battle that took a fresh twist this week after 15 players from the World Cup-winning squad were called-up despite their decision to boycott the national team until changes are made to the federation leadership. However, the government orchestrated a seven-hour marathon meeting between players, the federation and country’s high council for sports and all but two of the 23 players who had been called up ended their boycott after the federation promised “immediate and profound changes”.

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» 'We want to inspire': Germany appoint Julian Nagelsmann as manager – video

Julian Nagelsmann has been appointed as Germany’s head coach until after next year’s Euro 2024 on home soil, replacing Hansi Flick, the German Football Association (DFB) said on Friday. Germany parted ways with Flick this month, a day after their 4-1 home loss to Japan in a friendly. Nagelsmann has been out of work since his sacking by Bayern Munich in March. The 36-year-old, who previously managed RB Leipzig and Hoffenheim, won the 2021-22 Bundesliga with Bayern, where he also succeeded Flick. He is the youngest Germany coach since the 34-year-old Otto Nerz was appointed in 1926.

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» Messi’s US Open Cup final absence a reminder age always takes its toll

The 36-year-old was unfit to play in Miami’s defeat to Houston on Wednesday night. The club should consider calling time on his epic, remarkable season

Lionel Messi reached his breaking point. At least for now. The Argentinian has been remarkably durable throughout his club and international career. However, at 36, 12 spellbinding games in two months for his new club – after a season with PSG sandwiched by the World Cup triumph where he played every single minute – has proved too much.

As such, Inter Miami were without their blockbuster acquisition for arguably the biggest game in the club’s history. In the US Open Cup final on Wednesday night a fatigued squad lost 2-1 to Houston Dynamo in Fort Lauderdale. Messi could only watch from the stands.

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» Ukraine urges Uefa to reconsider Russia decision and will boycott tournaments
  • UAF condemns Uefa’s plans to readmit Russia under-17 teams
  • England and Poland say they will also not play against Russia

Ukraine has said it will not play in tournaments involving Russian teams after Uefa announced plans to reinstate Russia’s under-17 sides to European competitions.

In a statement the Ukrainian Association of Football (UAF) urged Uefa to reconsider its decision and urged other countries not to play against Russian teams.

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» Morata dominates the skies to win derby – and recognition – for Atlético | Sid Lowe

Striker has never been universally rated – but he is flourishing after being made to feel valued at club he grew up supporting

For one brief moment it looked like Álvaro Morata was going to do a Cristiano Ronaldo but this wasn’t the time and it definitely wasn’t the place, and somewhere in the middle of another leap into the Madrid sky his celebration became something else. No siuu, just screaming. Landing in the northwest corner of the Metropolitano, where the noise was unlike anything they had heard here before, he opened his arms for Samuel Lino to jump in. Three minutes gone and he had already scored the goal that opened the derby; 33 seconds into the second half, he scored the goal that closed it. Which was when Diego Simeone blew him a kiss.

“This is the Morata we need,” Atlético Madrid’s coach said after. “We know he can do it.”

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» Marseille are a managerless mess and their fans deserve some of the blame

Marcelino quit the club due to ‘severe threats and insults’. When will the fans learn how to support their managers?

By Adam White for Get French Football News

A coach’s life is never simple at the Vélodrome. After just seven games in charge, Marcelino resigned as Marseille manager last week in response to what he called “intimidation, threats, insults and slander”. The Spaniard became the fourth Marseille coach to resign in less than three years and he is not the first to do so under duress from the club’s volatile fanbase. Marseille, so often their own worst enemies, routinely implode and start again. As their 4-0 thrashing to PSG on Sunday night underlines, this latest farce will be difficult to overcome.

The trouble began at an “extremely tense” meeting last Monday. Marseille fans often enjoy an audience with the club’s management and last week’s gathering had been planned for some time. But things turned sour when fan groups took the opportunity to complain more aggressively than usual.

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» Nagelsmann must revive Germany and unite a nation but are the tools lacking? | Andy Brassell

Replacement for Hansi Flick has little time and few friendlies but win over France suggests potential exists for improvement

Germany want “to take an approach that isn’t typical for a crisis”, says Julian Nagelsmann. After months and even years of stodge and with a home tournament on the horizon, the new coach is right to assume that patience and back-to-basics aren’t on the menu. Before hosting Euro 2024 Germany, it seems, just want to have fun.

This should be music to the ears of a nation of football fans turned off their national team not just by lacklustre displays – and successive failures at World Cup 2018, Euro 2020 and the latest World Cup – but by disorganisation and dispute within the Deutscher Fussball-Bund (DFB), the game’s governing body. Germany exited the 2022 World Cup at the group stage but already it was as if the tournament wasn’t happening back home, with few public screenings – reflective of antipathy about the hosts Qatar among fans but also of the squad’s perceived lack of personality, both in confronting human-rights issues and in performances.

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» Cat’s sighs: Juventus get a brutal reality check in Serie A from Sassuolo | Nicky Bandini

Fine win against Lazio lifted hopes but 4-2 loss raises questions about Bianconeri’s ability to challenge

For the first time in two years, Massimiliano Allegri stopped tinkering. Since returning to Juventus in 2021, he had taken charge of 112 games and changed his starting XI in every single one. There was genuine shock in the press box at the Mapei Stadium on Saturday as journalists realised the team to face Sassuolo was the same one that beat Lazio 3-1 a week before.

Allegri has suggested previously that his team selections rely on intuition more than over-analysis, telling La Repubblica: “I can’t stay 24 hours searching for a solution, I have to wait for inspiration to arrive.” It is easy to understand why his gut might have told him to stick, not twist, on this occasion. Juventus were brilliant against Lazio: exerting control even without possession against last season’s runners-up.

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» European roundup: Barcelona rescue point, Milik sends Juventus second
  • Fermín López goal earns Barça 2-2 draw at Real Mallorca
  • Juventus beat Lecce 1-0; Bayern’s Gnabry fractures arm

Barcelona twice fought back to secure a 2-2 draw at Real Mallorca on Tuesday, maintaining their unbeaten start to the La Liga season.

Mallorca’s early pressure paid off as they took the lead after eight minutes when Vedat Muriqi capitalised on a poor clearance from the Barcelona goalkeeper, Marc-André ter Stegen. Raphinha scored an equaliser with a powerful shot into the bottom-left corner in the 41st minute, only to see Abdón Prats restore the home side’s lead in stoppage time with a simple finish after Predrag Rajkovic’s superb long clearance from goal and a Muriqi header.

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» Orban extends reach across border to make TSC the club for ‘Serbia-Hungary’

West Ham’s Europa League opponents are one of several clubs outside Hungary benefiting from Hungarian assistance

On the face of it there was nothing unusual when, in October 2018, Viktor Orban attended the opening ceremony of a rural town’s new football academy. Hungary’s prime minister has long pumped vast amounts of money into his favourite sport, modernising its infrastructure while other elements of the government’s activity regress deeper into authoritarianism, and he was present to see the fruits of another new project. Orban watched a tournament between under-14 teams at the €9.5m facility, staying long enough to hand the winners their trophy.

The twist: Orban was in a different country. He was visiting Backa Topola, a small town in northern Serbia nearly 30 miles from the border with Hungary, to show his backing for its local side TSC. The surrounding region, Vojvodina, contains nearly 185,000 ethnic Hungarians and many are eligible to apply for citizenship, voting in the country’s elections. At the last count they made up 58% of the club’s surrounding municipality.

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» A very different Valencia find their youthful stomach for La Liga fight | Sid Lowe

Rubén Baraja was a mainstay of the club’s golden era. He’s now the manager of the youngsters reviving a distressed institution

“I’d like to see a different Valencia, but you have two options in life: give up or fight,” said the Valencia coach Rubén Baraja, and so they were going to fight. They were also, it turned out, going to be the Valencia that he and everyone else wanted to see but no one thought possible, not any more. The Valencia that was, well, Valencia, the way they used to be, the way they’re supposed to be; the Valencia that Diego Simeone said were “much better than us”, 45,363 people standing to applaud when it was all over and Atlético Madrid had been defeated 3-0. “This is a day to be enjoyed, for how hard it is to win,” Baraja said.

They had enjoyed it all right, the noise rolling down the vertical sides of Mestalla. As for hard, he could say that again so he did. Atlético were unbeaten, the last time they had played they had scored seven and Valencia hadn’t beaten them in 17 games, going back to 2014. “We have to accept that they have a very high level,” Baraja had said. Others dared say that they were title contenders again. Valencia by contrast had just come off two defeats that saw familiar ghosts reappear and their president had dared say that their target was survival, that Spain’s fourth biggest club should aspire only to avoid relegation.

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» To drive the Women’s Super League forward, it’s time to think big | Anita Asante

Playing at major stadiums can help players feel they are part of one club and that commitment is being shown towards them

For those of us working within the game, what happened with Spain’s players allows us to be empowered, to confront issues at our own clubs. Seeing them speaking out was so inspiring. Behind the scenes, clubs are surely going to try to be more stringent with safeguarding.

The power structures the actions of Luis Rubiales and others embody exist in whatever industry you work in. They have to be confronted. This is women’s football’s chance to be self-reflective, to see whether enough opportunities are offered to speak out. The game can lead by example.

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» Kai Havertz’s struggles to fit in sum up Arsenal’s unsettled start to season | Jonathan Wilson

The Gunners remain unbeaten and already have injury problems, but the weaknesses which cost them last season appear evident again

The ball sat up for Kai Havertz at the edge of the box. Very briefly, the possibility loomed that he might be about to arrive. This was the perfect moment for him to cast off all the doubts. Smash this into the top corner, win the north London derby with a brilliant late winner, and in an instant his journey in fans’ affections from puzzlement to embrace would have been completed.

It was not an easy chance, far from it, but so much the better: nobody becomes a hero with a tap-in. But the ball bounced fractionally higher than he’d anticipated, he made contact with the outside of his boot and the shot flew harmlessly high and wide. Havertz chewed the collar of his shirt: he knew what that moment represented.

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» Bin Salman’s sportswashing quip reflected growing power but was perhaps a mistake | Paul MacInnes

The crown prince was full of statistics in his Fox News interview – though scepticism of Saudi Arabia’s vision will surely remain

Crown prince Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia gave the impression of having swallowed a spreadsheet during his midweek interview with Fox News. Every answer he gave seemed to have a statistic attached. He reeled off figures comparing the economic growth of his country and South Korea. He estimated the level of annual profits in the global esports sector. He said he had a target to grow Saudi’s sports industry to 1.5% of national GDP. If that meant being accused of sportswashing, he added, then so be it.

“If sport washing is going to increase my GDP by way of 1%, then I will continue doing sport washing,” Bin Salman told Fox’s man by the Red Sea, Bret Baier. “I don’t care … I’m aiming for another 1.5%. Call it whatever you want, we’re going to get that 1.5%.”

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» David Squires on … what next for Neil Warnock after leaving Huddersfield?

From writing space novels to creating NFTs, how a nation’s sweetheart might fill his time while he’s out of work

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» Newcastle take out Manchester City and the WSL returns – Football Weekly Extra

Max Rushden is joined by Barry Glendenning, Jonathan Fadugba, Will Unwin and Suzy Wrack for a midweek review and a weekend preview

Rate, review, share on Apple Podcasts, Soundcloud, Audioboom, Mixcloud, Acast and Stitcher, and join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter and email.

On the podcast today: Manchester City are out of the League Cup thanks to plucky upstarts Newcastle United. Does this suggest anything about either side’s quality this season and how much does Pep Guardiola care?

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» Who was the first goalkeeper to come up for a corner in football? | The Knowledge

Plus: the most consecutive score draws, the most goals scored in one game by different players and more

“The phenomenon of keepers desperately going up for a corner in the final moments of a game is one of the most exciting things about football. But when did it start? Were amateur-era keepers doing this? Or did Peter Schmeichel invent it at Euro 96?” wonders Damian Kerr.

Ivan Provedel’s accomplished header for Lazio against Atlético Madrid last week was the latest example of a keeper stealing the show at the end of a game. But pinning down the origin is tricky: it’s not in Rothmans, there are no catch-all search terms you can use in the newspaper archives. We know that goalkeepers have been scoring goals since Moses wore short pants, but the likes of Charlie Williams (1900), Pat Jennings and Peter Shilton (both 1967) all did so by accident from goal-kicks.

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» From Macario to bigger crowds: five things to look forward to as WSL starts | Moving the Goalposts

With the new Women’s Super League season starting on Sunday, we are excited to see how the new signings fare and whether anyone can topple Chelsea

The football never stops, they say, and who can argue? On Sunday the Women’s Super League starts, just over a month since the World Cup final between England and Spain in Sydney. And in between we have had the Nations League and Champions League qualifiers.

There is a real concern about player welfare and managers have been given an almost impossible task to juggle the safety of their squad members with the desire to have the best possible season.

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» WSL season preview 2023-24 – Women’s Football Weekly

Faye Carruthers, Suzanne Wrack, Robyn Cowen and Sophie Downey round up the latest news across the women’s game and preview the WSL season

We’re back! Has anything happened since we were last with you?

Less than five weeks since the World Cup final and there’s so much to catch up on as we prepare for the 2023-24 Women’s Super League season.

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» Barça bounce back, a Juve calamity and madness in Marseille – Football Weekly

Max Rushden is joined by Barry Glendenning, Nicky Bandini, Philippe Auclair and Sid Lowe for a round-up of the biggest stories in European football

Rate, review, share on Apple Podcasts, Soundcloud, Audioboom, Mixcloud, Acast and Stitcher, and join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter and email.

On the podcast today; Barcelona are top of La Liga and look favourites to be there come the end of the season, Real Madrid’s lack of depth is exposed by Atlético and 15 Las Palmas players miss their flight in search of a coffee.

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» How Ajax went from Champions League overachievers to chaos | Bart Vlietstra

Dutch club won neutrals’ hearts with 2019 European run but a series of events has led to poor results and fan rage boiling over

It all started with a photograph of the private parts of a former player. No, this is not a piece about dressing-room “humour”. This is the story of the demise of Ajax, who in 2019 were seconds from the Champions League final and now sit 14th in the Eredivisie after the game at home against Feyenoord on Sunday was abandoned amid crowd trouble with the team 3-0 down.

The goal scored by Tottenham’s Lucas Moura in the last minute of injury time on 8 May 2019 shattered Ajax’s Champions League final dream then but there could be no doubting the Dutch club had overachieved. For a team from a league snubbed by oil sheikhs and big investors, and where TV money is a relative pittance, it was still a memorable evening and an unforgettable season.

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» Austria Salzburg refuse to play second fiddle to Red Bull 18 years after split

Breakaway club’s fans have never forgiven Red Bull for their treatment and vented their feelings in the Austrian Cup

Before kick-off at the MGG Arena, south of Salzburg, a banner went up among the fans in violet and white. In block white capitals, it read: “For you only success and money count, you characterless bull-swines!” As the smoke rising from the flares behind the home goal made the stands look like a cauldron, a deafening chorus of anti-Red Bull chants echoed around the ground. Austria Salzburg fans’ pre-match tifo showed Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, the city’s most famous son, decked out in violet and white, bringing his instrument crashing down on the head of a bloated red bull. Underneath it, supporters displayed another banner, which read: “In Salzburg, we play first violin.”

Austria Salzburg fans’ animosity towards Red Bull can be traced back 18 years to the company’s takeover at the Stadion Wals-Siezenheim, now known as the Red Bull Arena, after which disillusioned supporters broke away and set up a phoenix club, which on Tuesday met Red Bull Salzburg for the first time. The origins of the feud made it hard not to view this as a clash between corporate power and fan power, cash and community, and two fundamentally different visions of the game.

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» ‘We’re quite an oddity’: Exeter City celebrate 20 years of fan ownership

League One side host Luton in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday but as their chair says: ‘I’m sad at how other clubs judge success’

It is difficult to imagine there are too many other clubs where the manager can freely walk home from matches, regardless of the result, or has been gifted a tailor-made oak coffee table by a fan. Better still, the table in Gary Caldwell’s office at Exeter’s revamped Cliff Hill training base, given to him by a supporter who is a carpenter, has an integrated tactics board and the pitch dimensions are to the scale of the surface at their St James Park home. “The supporters go over and above in terms of what they give to this club,” Caldwell says.

Then again Exeter are somewhat unique given their status as a fan-owned club, the 20-year anniversary of which is this month, a cause for celebration and a move that has since prompted intrigue and praise in their model from rivals and government.

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» ‘Get back into the kitchen’: what happened when Jill Scott and Gary Neville swapped social media accounts

The two former England internationals swapped X accounts for five days without telling anyone. The results were predictable

It would be easy to presume that life is straightforward for Jill Scott these days. The former England midfielder hung up her boots last year with a Euro 2022 winner’s medal in her pocket, and a few months later was voted queen of the jungle on I’m a Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here.

Scott’s distinguished playing career culminated in a wave of public affection after England’s first major tournament victory since 1966. But even now, as a highly decorated and widely celebrated former player, life in the public eye has its challenges.

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» Next Generation 2022: 60 of the best young talents in world football

From Antonio Nusa to Mathys Tel, we pick 60 of the most talented players born in 2005. Check the progress of our classes of 2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014

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» Next Generation 2022: 20 of the best talents at Premier League clubs

We pick the best youngsters at each club born between 1 September 2005 and 31 August 2006, an age band known as first-year scholars. Check the progress of our classes of 2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014

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» From Haaland to Gordon: what happened to Next Generation 2017?

Five years ago we picked 80 promising players from around the world and have followed their progress since then.

Premier League Next Gen 2017 | Rest of the world 2017

Talent spotting in football can be a brutal and precarious business. There are so many pitfalls on the way and a player who is outstanding at 16 may not make it for a variety of reasons: loss of form and/or confidence, injuries and a host of personal reasons.

Every now and then, however, a player comes through who is so good that he or she seems destined to make it to the top. Erling Haaland – or Erling Braut Håland as he was known back then – is one of them. Of course, a serious injury could have derailed his career but he was one of those kids who stand out from an early age.

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