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10 months agoLiverpool midfielder Fabinho proud of Mane assist

first_imgLiverpool midfielder Fabinho proud of Mane assistby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveLiverpool midfielder Fabinho is delighted after his assist for Sadio Mane’s opener in victory over Manchester United on Sunday.The Brazilian laid on his first goal for Liverpool before turning in a dominant display that led to an eventual 3-1 victory.“It’s a thing I always try to perfect, to train,” Fabinho said of his chipped pass. “I get a lot of [the] ball, in a position that normally the opponent’s defence is making the move outwards, and our attackers are getting in.“I saw Mane making the sign with his hand and I launched it.”It was a good pass.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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10 months agoBarcelona boss Valverde: I’m as much a photographer as a coach

first_imgBarcelona boss Valverde: I’m as much a photographer as a coachby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveErnesto Valverde admits he regards himself as much as a photographer as a coach. The Barcelona trainer has spoken about how important it is for him to take advantage of the time he has to work with his cameras.”It’s clear that photography is a way to escape, but it’s not a hobby for me, it’s something very serious in my life,” he said to La Vanguardia.”When I was 17 years old, playing at Alaves, I was studying to get an industrial masters in electronics, a job that I never practiced.”At that time I liked to take photos but more as a hobby, until one day, with my first salary as a footballer, I asked a friend to bring me a camera from the Canary Islands.”It cost me 40,000 pesetas, I remember perfectly.”Valverde gets emotional when he talks about the various stages of picture taking.”That moment when you are in the laboratory and you smell acetic acid, a fixative, the developer that you have mixed yourself at home…” he continued.”You turn off the light inputs and you put the red light bulb on, you put the paper in the bucket and you see the image come out, that moment is amazing.”Though he is well known as an ex-football player and coach, Valverde defines himself as a photographer.”I am a trainer as well as a photographer,” he added.”I like to educate my eyes a lot by looking at books and I admire those photographers who have the patience to wait for good light and perfect a good frame.”I’m more immediate and visceral and I’m also nonconformist with my work.”I want my photos not to be very comfortable or friendly, I want my work to be different.” About the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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10 months agoPSG midfielder Rabiot agrees terms with Barcelona

first_imgPSG midfielder Rabiot agrees terms with Barcelonaby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the lovePSG midfielder Adrien Rabiot has agreed terms with Barcelona, it has been claimed.Le Parisien, ignoring Barca’s statement of denial, reported on Monday that Rabiot has reached an agreement with the Catalan club over his salary and signing bonus. At the moment there are no negotiations between Barça and PSG, but that the situation could evolve “this week”. Barça released a comment on Sunday denying “any type” of agreement with the midfielder. The club added that they have always acted in the correct manner with PSG, who they contacted over the player in August and again last week. TagsTransfersAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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10 months agoChelsea defender David Luiz: Cesc one of best players England has seen

first_imgChelsea defender David Luiz: Cesc one of best players England has seenby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveChelsea defender David Luiz has paid tribute to departing teammate Cesc Fabregas.Fabregas, on way to Monaco, bid an emotional farewell to Blues fans as they beat Nottingham Forest 2-0 in the third round of the FA Cup on Saturday.“I think Cesc is one of the best players to have played in England for many, many years,” the Brazilian told talkSPORT.“It was emotional, not just for him, but for everybody.“Maybe he is not going to play for Chelsea anymore so we are sad, but we wish him all the best because he is a great character and a great player and we will miss him.“It’s always hard, but it’s always part of the process.” TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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a month agoTammy Abraham: I want to be Chelsea legend

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Tammy Abraham: I want to be Chelsea legendby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveTammy Abraham is determined to become a Chelsea legend.The 21-year-old is making his mark at Stamford Bridge this season, with a hat-trick in Saturday’s win over Wolves taking his season total to 7 from five Premier League games.”I have grown up watching big stars playing in the Champions League, and to play in it myself would obviously be a dream,” he said.”Players like the gaffer [Frank Lampard], Didier Drogba and John Terry are great legends. They have been there and done it. I would like to follow the same path. “I am delighted to be scoring goals for a team I have grown up loving and have always wanted to play for. It is just an amazing feeling and hasn’t kicked in yet.”Hopefully this is the beginning of a great career at Chelsea. I’m living the dream and I need to keep it running.” last_img read more

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a month agoJuventus rival Man Utd, Spurs interest for Fenerbahce striker Vedat Muriqi

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Juventus rival Man Utd, Spurs interest for Fenerbahce striker Vedat Muriqiby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveThe race for Fenerbahce striker Vedat Muriqi is intensifying.Manchester United and Tottenham having been scouting the Kosovo international this season.And Juventus have asked for tickets for the derby against Galatasaray, with the express purpose of checking on Muriqi.For Fenerbahce management, there’s no plans to sell Muriqi until the end of the season. The player’s contract does not include a release clause. If he is sold, Çaykur Rizespor will be due a 15 percent share of the profit from the sale. last_img read more

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5 days agoShearer praises Hudson-Odoi for Chelsea’s win over Newcastle

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Shearer praises Hudson-Odoi for Chelsea’s win over Newcastleby Paul Vegas5 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveGeordie legend Alan Shearer praised Callum Hudson-Odoi for Chelsea’s win over Newcastle United.Chelsea beat Shearer’s former side Newcastle 1-0 on Saturday thanks to Marcos Alonso’s late goal.But it was Hudson-Odoi who provided the assist, his third of the season, as Chelsea continued their winning ways under manager Frank Lampard.”He has played three times this season and he has three assists,” Shearer said on BBC’s Match of the Day.“He had such a terrible injury which he’s come back from. He’s 18 years of age and can spray the ball around like that, left or right, and he is full of confidence.”He can go on the outside and come on the inside.”Everything Chelsea did well he was at the heart of it.“He did his bit defensively which he had to do and he was hugging the touchline, and with that drive that he’s got he makes it very difficult for defenders.”For the goal he sets it up for Alonso, puts it into his path and says ‘go on, have a go’ and that was the winning goal. Chelsea were the better team and deserved to score.” last_img read more

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a day agoMan Utd paid fortune to Alexis in bonuses

first_imgTagsLoan MarketAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Man Utd paid fortune to Alexis in bonusesby Paul Vegasa day agoSend to a friendShare the loveInter Milan striker Alexis Sanchez reportedly pocketed nearly £5m in bonuses from his dismal campaign last season with Manchester United.Sanchez was shipped out on loan to Inter Milan this summer after a dismal campaign for United which saw him score just two goals in 27 appearances.The Chilean forward joined United to huge fanfare in January 2018, signing as the club’s top earner on £400,000.The Sun says despite flopping last season, he picked up a whopping £4,920,011 in performance-related bonuses and image rights.That is the equivalent of a staggering £100,000 a week.Inter are currently paying half of Sanchez’s wages after United managed to offload the 30-year-old during the summer. last_img read more

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Rutgers Commit Marques Ford Makes It Clear He Wouldn’t Re-Consider Tennessee

first_imgA general view of Rutgers football stadium.NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ – NOVEMBER 19: A general view during the first half of a game between the Cincinnati Bearcats and Rutgers Scarlet Knights at Rutgers Stadium on November 19, 2011 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)Gibsonton (Fla.) East Bay defensive end Marques Ford was committed to Tennessee for six months until losing his scholarship on Jan. 21 due to a numbers crunch in the Vols’ class. Ford rebounded by committing to Rutgers two days later, and indicated after his official visit to RU this weekend that he planned to sign with the Scarlet Knights.Because Tennessee lost a commitment from four-star running back Kendall Bussey this afternoon, some Vols’ fans on Twitter broached the idea of trying to bring Ford back into the fold, but the four-star recruit dismissed any notion of that tonight.All this talk about me going back to Tennessee and im just like ..  #CHOPNation pic.twitter.com/TW7S9VZabP— 5⃣6⃣ (@Marques_Ford) February 3, 2015Even with Bussey de-committing, it’s doubtful Tennessee would have tried to move back in on Ford. If they did, he indicated he wouldn’t be interested. Somehow, I think this one works out well for all parties: UT still has a highly-rated class under Butch Jones, Rutgers head coach Kyle Flood lands a talented four-star and Ford ends up in a place where he is clearly wanted.last_img read more

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College GameDay Made Lee Corso Cry With Incredible Footage Of His Time At Navy

first_imgLee Corso cries on College GameDay.lee corso cries on college gamedayESPN’s College GameDay only had one game to cover Saturday morning, but the program certainly made the most of its air time. In honor of Lee Corso’s time spent at Navy, where he was the defensive backs coach from 1966 to 1968, GameDay put together a feature that included footage of his days in Annapolis. The segment, which you can view below, actually made Corso cry live on television. Rece Davis, Desmond Howard and Kirk Herbstreit were also taken aback.Here’s the entire feature, via ESPN. If it doesn’t work on your mobile device, you can view it here.Very cool. Props to ESPN for honoring one of the most beloved people in the sport.last_img read more

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What happened to Oscar? The Brazil star paid £21m a year

first_imgHe had the football world at his feet. A midfield talent like few others, Oscar was already the star of a World Cup and a vital cog in not one, but two Premier League-winning campaigns.At 25, the Brazilian seemed to have everything in place to cement his position in the game’s elite.However, in January 2017, he dropped a bombshell. The Chelsea man gave up on his dream of dominating European football and moved to China, signing a hugely lucrative four-year deal with Shanghai SIPG worth £20.8 million ($26.5m) a year that made him one of the world’s highest-paid players. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Two years have now passed since that momentous £60m ($76.5m) transfer, and while predictions made at that time over how Chinese football was ready to compete with Europe’s big leagues proved incorrect, Oscar has been a huge success in Shanghai.Perhaps the most striking thing about this elegant, cultured playmaker is his knack of finding himself at the heart of winning teams.From the Recopa Sudamericana in 2011 with Internacional to two Premier League crowns at Chelsea and international glory in the Confederations Cup and Under-20 World Cup – with a hat-trick in the 2011 final he achieved a feat only the great Geoff Hurst had previously managed – Oscar has an enviable collection of trophies.Oscar Shanghai SIPGOscar Shanghai SIPG PSSince moving to Shanghai he has carried on that tradition. Having finished runners-up in the Super League in 2017, Oscar’s debut season, the side coached by Vitor Pereira went one better last year to take the title, the first in the club’s history.Oscar was predictably in the thick of things.With 19 assists across the league season, he beat compatriots Renato Augusto and Hulk (his team-mate at SIPG) to the award for best provider. The 27-year-old added a further 12 goals of his own making, meaning that of SIPG’s 77 Super League strikes, he was directly involved in no less than 31.While attacking partner in crime and Chinese football legend Wu Lei was named Player of the Season thanks to his exceptional haul of 27 goals in just 29 games, Oscar nevertheless earned a place in the CSL’s best XI.Even with wages that set SIPG back around £400,000 ($510,000) a week, Oscar proved his worth. Of course, his pay packet remains a major talking point but he has been remarkably up front about his motivations for leaving Chelsea for relatively uncharted territories.“Every football player, or every person who works, wants to earn money to help their families,” he explained back in 2017 to Copa 90.“I came from a social background in Brazil that is very poor. We didn’t have anything. This is the fruit of my work and when I earn this, it is because I conquered it.”The same way I came here, I will be able to return to Europe.”Oscar Shanghai SIPG PSHis decision of course came at a cost. Previously an undisputed member of the Brazil team, Oscar last featured for his nation all the way back in November 2015.Selecao coach Tite has shown himself willing to play China-based talent, with Renato Augusto and Paulinho both featuring in recent squads. However, Oscar has found no way through, his habitual spot blocked by Philippe Coutinho.Consequently, he finds himself in an acute dilemma. He undoubtedly retains the ability to shine again at the very highest level, but with two years left on his contract at SIPG and astronomic salary commitments, he is not exactly an attractive financial proposition for Europe’s elite.For now, then, he will continue to prove that China is not a country where footballers go to die, with the AFC Champions League the big prize on offer in 2019, along with the challenge of retaining the Super League title.The example of Paulinho also shows that one can return from the Far East, while the Copa America looms large on the horizon, with places still up for grabs in the Selecao squad for this year’s tournament in his native Brazil.Did Oscar err in following the yuan to a relative footballing backwater? Perhaps.The midfielder, however, made what he believes was the correct decision not just for himself but for his entire family, having now set them up for life.In addition, his exploits in China have shown that he remains a special talent, a valuable asset for any team.last_img read more

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Friendly advice: Liverpool warned about Palace threat

first_imgThere will be plenty of reunions when Crystal Palace visit Anfield this weekend.From the dugout, where former Liverpool boss Roy Hodgson – yes, it really did happen – will look to plot the Reds’ downfall, to the field, where one-time Kopites Mamadou Sakho and Christian Benteke will play key roles in the visitors’ gameplan. Even Zaf Iqbal, the Eagles club doctor, spent four-and-a-half years on Merseyside.However, with 17 years’ service in a red shirt, Martin Kelly can top that. The versatile defender made 62 appearances at Anfield between 2008 and 2014, and was part of the squad which delivered Liverpool’s last major trophy, the 2012 League Cup. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? He can also boast, if that is the right word, the shortest ever senior England career, his one friendly appearance totalling just two minutes.This weekend, he will seek to bring down his former club. Kelly played when Palace won at Anfield in April 2017. Of the 31 home league games since, Liverpool have won 22 and drawn nine. It is the third-longest unbeaten home run in their history.“It’s always nice to go back home,” says Kelly, speaking exclusively to Goal. “And especially with the new stand. It’s always a nice fixture in terms of the stadium.”Palace are not only the last visiting team to win a league game at Anfield. They were also, in November 2015, the first side to inflict defeat on Jurgen Klopp in the Premier League.Of course, it was Palace who famously ended the title hopes of Brendan Rodgers’ side at the tail end of the 2013-14 campaign. ‘Crystanbul’, they called it.Martin Kelly Liverpool PSThey’ve been upsetting the big boys this season too. Draws with Manchester United and Arsenal were admirable, but it was their victory over Manchester City at the Etihad, three days before Christmas, which blew the title race open.Liverpool’s lofty position in the table owes plenty to the Londoners.“We all get excited playing the big teams,” says Kelly. “You go to the best stadiums and it’s exciting.“But we will take it as another Premier League game and will go with the game plan that has been set by the manager and the staff.“We know that we’ve got great ability in our squad and we can hurt any team in the league. We’ve shown that by getting a result against Manchester City, the draws with Arsenal and Manchester United this season, so all we can do is stick to our game plan and see what happens.”Luka Milivojevic Manchester City Crystal Palace EPL 12222018Kelly, like the rest of the country, has been watching events at the top of the table with interest. Liverpool can extend their lead over Manchester City, who play at Huddersfield on Sunday, to seven points with a victory over Palace this weekend.“I don’t think they will be thinking about that,” says Kelly. “They are professional athletes and all you think about is the next game and your next opponent – you don’t try to think too far ahead.“I can see the title race going right down to the wire. Liverpool are in the driving seat at the minute, but Manchester City, with the way they play, will be right there. It’ll be exciting for every Premier League fan.”As for Kelly, he is able to reflect on his time at Anfield with fondness. Injuries denied him the chance to truly establish himself at his boyhood club, but not many Academy graduates can match his achievements.Indeed, until Trent Alexander-Arnold’s emergence, no home-grown player had played more than Kelly’s 62 games for Liverpool since Steven Gerrard.“I think it’s vital for the club and the fans to see home-grown players come through,” he says. “With Trent, it seems that he has everything in his grasp to become a world-class player. Watching him play, he’s got all the attributes.“He’s still young so he probably needs the experience wrapped around him like I did. Having Jamie Carragher helped me, and Trent has the likes of Virgil van Dijk around him, so if he keeps his feet on the ground, he can go a long way.”Martin Kelly Trent Alexander-Arnoled PSKelly is also ideally placed to judge the progress of another supremely gifted young English full-back.Aaron Wan-Bissaka’s development at Palace this season has been to the detriment of Kelly’s first-team prospects, in truth, but the England under-21 international is already catching the eye of the Premier League big boys with his performances.Sadio Mane will have a testing afternoon against the 21-year-old, for sure.“Playing alongside Aaron, you forget how young he is,” Kelly says. “He’s a player that only broke into the first team last season but playing with him, it’s like he’s played 10 seasons.“He plays with experience, he’s always in the right position, he knows when to go forward and when to stay. He’s coming on leaps and bounds.“He must be made up with the progression he’s making, and a player of Aaron’s ability he’ll probably want to start adding more assists to his game.”He helps the team massively defensively, and you can leave him more or less one-on-one with any attacker knowing that he is going to do his job.”He’s a great player to have on the team.”Liverpool, you have been warned… Subscribe to Goal’s Liverpool Correspondent Neil Jones’ weekly email bringing you the best Liverpool FC writing from around the weblast_img read more

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Georgia Releases Awesome “Autumn Fire: Vision” Hype Video Ahead Of Nicholls State Game

first_imgA Georgia football player wearing number 14.Georgia has released a new hype video ahead of its contest Saturday against Nicholls State.The Georgia Bulldogs kicked off their 2016 campaign with a huge win over No. 22 North Carolina last Saturday. Nick Chubb, who suffered a devastating knee injury last season, returned to form with a 222-yard, two-touchdown performance against the Tar Heels. Fans are hoping that Kirby Smart’s first victory as the head coach of the Bulldogs sets the tone for the rest of the season.This week, UGA gets a bit of a breather, taking on Nicholls State at home. Regardless, the team has put together another awesome hype video to help amp up the team ahead of the contest. It’s called “Autumn Fire: Vision (Attack The Day) and fans will love it:Georgia vs. Nicholls State is set to kick off at Noon ET. It’ll be broadcast on the SEC Network.last_img read more

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St. Petersburg Bowl: Mississippi State vs. Miami (OH) Prediction, Preview, Spread, Channel

first_imgThe St. Petersburg Bowl logo.Twitter/St. Pete BowlLooking for a Mississippi State vs. Miami (OH) preview ahead of their matchup in the St. Petersburg Bowl? Stick around. We’ve got all of the pre-game analysis before the big matchup.Monday, Dec. 26, the Mississippi State Bulldogs take on the Miami (OH) RedHawks in the St. Petersburg Bowl. The game, to be played at Tropicana Field, is slated for a 11:00 a.m. ET start time and will be broadcast on ESPN. Read on for our Mississippi State vs. Miami (OH) preview.According to ESPN’s matchup predictor, which is based on its Football Power Index, Mississippi State wins the matchup between the two teams 81.9% of the time. The spread, via OddsShark, has the Bulldogs favored.Spread: Mississippi State -11.5Game Time: 11:00 a.m. ETChannel: ESPNMississippi State vs. Miami (OH) preview:Mississippi State (5-7) closed out the regular season with a 55-20 win at Ole Miss in the Egg Bowl which snapped a two-game losing streak for the Bulldogs. Miami (OH) (6-6) won its last six games of the year to become bowl eligible with its latest win coming on Nov. 22 against Ball State.The RedHawks found themselves down 17-7 against Ball State but were able to put together a comeback to punch their ticket to a bowl game. Miami (OH) gave up 247 rushing yards on the ground to Ball State, but quarterback Gus Ragland helped lead the comeback with 380 yards passing and three touchdowns. The RedHawks’ offense enters the game ranked 108th in the nation averaging 361 yards per game.Mississippi State beat up on Ole Miss in the Egg Bowl much to the thanks of quarterback Nick Fitzgerald throwing three touchdowns and rushing for 258 yards and two more scores against the poor Rebel defense. Fitzgerald averaged seven-yards per rushing attempt during the regular season and the Bulldogs go as he goes.The Bulldogs beat NC State 51-28 in the Belk Bowl a year ago while the RedHawks last played in a bowl game in 2011 when they beat Middle Tennessee 35-21 in the GoDaddy.com Bowl.Mississippi State vs. Miami (OH) Prediction:Mississippi State is built on the run as it averages 233.2 yards per game which is 24th in the nation. The RedHawks have been successful in stopping the run this season as their run defense ranks 33rd in the country allowing less than 140 rushing yards per contest.Miami (OH) on the other hand virtually has no rushing attack as it ranks 109th in the land with 133.5 yards on the ground per game.The Bulldogs have the firepower, and the dual-threat Fitzgerald, that will give the RedHawks major problems all afternoon.Mississippi State 45, Miami (OH) 23,According to ESPN’s matchup predictor, which is based on its Football Power Index, Mississippi State wins the matchup between the two teams 81.9% of the time. The spread, via OddsShark, has the Bulldogs favored.Spread: Mississippi State -11.5Game Time: 11:00 a.m. ETChannel: ESPNMississippi State vs. Miami (OH) preview:Mississippi State (5-7) closed out the regular season with a 55-20 win at Ole Miss in the Egg Bowl which snapped a two-game losing streak for the Bulldogs. Miami (OH) (6-6) won its last six games of the year to become bowl eligible with its latest win coming on Nov. 22 against Ball State.The RedHawks found themselves down 17-7 against Ball State but were able to put together a comeback to punch their ticket to a bowl game. Miami (OH) gave up 247 rushing yards on the ground to Ball State, but quarterback Gus Ragland helped lead the comeback with 380 yards passing and three touchdowns. The RedHawks’ offense enters the game ranked 108th in the nation averaging 361 yards per game.Mississippi State beat up on Ole Miss in the Egg Bowl much to the thanks of quarterback Nick Fitzgerald throwing three touchdowns and rushing for 258 yards and two more scores against the poor Rebel defense. Fitzgerald averaged seven-yards per rushing attempt during the regular season and the Bulldogs go as he goes.The Bulldogs beat NC State 51-28 in the Belk Bowl a year ago while the RedHawks last played in a bowl game in 2011 when they beat Middle Tennessee 35-21 in the GoDaddy.com Bowl.Mississippi State vs. Miami (OH) Prediction:,According to ESPN’s matchup predictor, which is based on its Football Power Index, Mississippi State wins the matchup between the two teams 81.9% of the time. The spread, via OddsShark, has the Bulldogs favored.Spread: Mississippi State -11.5Game Time: 11:00 a.m. ETChannel: ESPNMississippi State vs. Miami (OH) preview:Mississippi State (5-7) closed out the regular season with a 55-20 win at Ole Miss in the Egg Bowl which snapped a two-game losing streak for the Bulldogs. Miami (OH) (6-6) won its last six games of the year to become bowl eligible with its latest win coming on Nov. 22 against Ball State.The RedHawks found themselves down 17-7 against Ball State but were able to put together a comeback to punch their ticket to a bowl game. Miami (OH) gave up 247 rushing yards on the ground to Ball State, but quarterback Gus Ragland helped lead the comeback with 380 yards passing and three touchdowns. The RedHawks’ offense enters the game ranked 108th in the nation averaging 361 yards per game.Mississippi State beat up on Ole Miss in the Egg Bowl much to the thanks of quarterback Nick Fitzgerald throwing three touchdowns and rushing for 258 yards and two more scores against the poor Rebel defense. Fitzgerald averaged seven-yards per rushing attempt during the regular season and the Bulldogs go as he goes.The Bulldogs beat NC State 51-28 in the Belk Bowl a year ago while the RedHawks last played in a bowl game in 2011 when they beat Middle Tennessee 35-21 in the GoDaddy.com Bowl.Mississippi State vs. Miami (OH) Prediction:last_img read more

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‘Van Dijk is the kingpin at Liverpool’

first_imgVirgil van Dijk is “the kingpin” at Anfield, says Mark Wright, with a £75 million ($94m) centre-half “key to Liverpool’s success”.A former Reds defender is not the first to suggest that a Netherlands international has become a talismanic presence on Merseyside.Jurgen Klopp moved to put a record-breaking transfer in place during the winter window of 2018 . Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare The faith shown in Van Dijk has been richly rewarded, with the 27-year-old now PFA Player of the Year and a Champions League winner .He is widely regarded as the finest exponent of his chosen position in world football, with Wright among those to have talked up his obvious qualities and value to Liverpool.A man who spent seven years with the Reds between 1991 and 1998 told Sky Sports : “You can talk about his ability in possession and, yes, he can head the ball, he is quick and he can do all the other bits and pieces as well.“But you don’t come to Liverpool unless you can do those things. The biggest thing that has impressed me is what I see from him when the ball is at the other end of the pitch.”He dictates. He makes sure people fill those pockets where previously Liverpool were being hurt on the counter-attack. He makes sure others are aware.“It’s that organisation of others that has made the biggest difference because there aren’t a lot of leaders around but he can do that. Nobody is going to argue with him because Virgil is the kingpin.“I see him as the key to Liverpool’s success. He is an exceptional player and I really cannot believe it wasn’t more of a battle to get him because there is a dearth of top centre-halves around.“Look around. Name the top five in the Premier League and I think you would struggle to come up with five. Virgil stands out like a sore thumb, to be honest with you.”Jurgen Klopp Liverpool Champions League Winner 06/01/19Van Dijk has contributed significantly to Liverpool becoming European champions and serious contenders for the Premier League title.Wright believes there will be more success to come for the Reds after seeing Klopp break his trophy duck in English football.The ex-England international added: “I hope this is the start of something.“They are already feared. Teams don’t want to play against them. That is where they are now. Liverpool and Manchester City are where everyone else wants to be.“I think they need maybe two good players this summer and that would be enough. Maybe a centre-forward who could change the play if they needed to.“But who am I to say anything to Jurgen Klopp? He is the manager and he knows exactly what he is doing.“I am the same as the Liverpool supporters worldwide, I trust in him. If he doesn’t want to buy anyone then that means there aren’t the right players out there.” Subscribe to Goal’s Liverpool Correspondent Neil Jones’ weekly email bringing you the best Liverpool FC writing from around the weblast_img read more

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Big Ten Program Named Possible Transfer School For QB Kelly Bryant

first_imgKelly Bryant of the Clemson Tigers reacts after a touchdown against the Miami Hurricanes in the third quarter during the ACC Football Championship.CHARLOTTE, NC – DECEMBER 02: Kelly Bryant #2 of the Clemson Tigers reacts after a touchdown against the Miami Hurricanes in the third quarter during the ACC Football Championship at Bank of America Stadium on December 2, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)Clemson quarterback Kelly Bryant announced his decision to transfer earlier today. Bryant will redshirt this season and be immediately eligible elsewhere as a graduate transfer in 2019.He should have no shortage of programs interested in him. Bryant has started the last 18 games for the Tigers and has led a team to the ACC title and the College Football Playoff.Trevor Lawrence might have the higher ceiling and be the better play for Clemson right now, but Bryant is a capable FBS quarterback.Tanner Nestle of BadgerofHonor has proposed the possibility of Bryant enrolling at Wisconsin. While Nestle acknowledges that current starter Alex Hornibrook will be back next year and highly-rated recruit Graham Mertz will be arriving, he cites Bryant’s skill set as a major reason the Badgers should be interested.Bryant is a true dual-threat quarterback. Last year he threw for only 2,802 yards and 13 touchdowns, but he ran for 665 yards and 11 more scores on the ground. He’s not a bad passer though. Last season he completed over 65% of his passes and so far this year he has completed 66%.With Wisconsin’s history of playing great defense and being able to run the ball effectively, it seems like it’s always just a strong quarterback away from competing for a national title. The closest the Badgers have come to such glory was with Russell Wilson in 2011 and Alex Hornibrook last year.In our opinion, Bryant and Wisconsin doesn’t seem like a natural fit. Hornibrook is in his third season as a starter and has improved each year. Bryant is good and his legs would add a different dimension to the Badgers’ offense, but are we sure he’d win the job?More than likely, Bryant will head to a program that has a clear opening at the QB position. He’s clearly looking to maximize his playing time in his final collegiate season.Which program proves to be the best fit remains to be seen.last_img read more

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Vegas Computer: This Undefeated Team Will Get Blown Out Today

first_imgA general view of NC State's football field.RALEIGH, NC – SEPTEMBER 18: The North Carolina State University Wolfpack kicks off to the Ohio State Buckeyes on September 18, 2004 at Carter-Finley Stadium in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo By Grant Halverson/Getty Images)The college football season is over its midway point. After seven weeks of action, only eight undefeated programs remain – all of which sit inside the top-25 of the AP and Coaches’ polls.A Vegas computer is predicting one of those undefeated teams gets blown out this afternoon. No. 16 NC State takes on No. 3 Clemson at Memorial Stadium.The Wolfpack, despite its 6-0 record, is in for a nasty defeat on Saturday afternoon if you put any stock in the score predictions from OddsShark. The computer predicts the Clemson Tigers walk out with nearly a three-touchdown win.Here’s the prediction.Clemson enters the game as a 17.5-point favorite. The Vegas computer has the Tigers covering – for those who want to put a little money on the game.When these two teams met last year, Clemson walked out with a 38-31 win. Can the Wolfpack pull off the upset?Clemson and NC State kick off at 3:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.last_img read more

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Oklahoma RB Has Suffered A Season-Ending Injury

first_imgA general view of an Oklahoma Sooners football game.NORMAN, OK – NOVEMBER 25: The Oklahoma Sooners and West Virginia Mountaineers in between plays at Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium on November 25, 2017 in Norman, Oklahoma. Oklahoma defeated West Virginia 59-31. (Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images)Oklahoma’s football program has suffered some tough injury news today.The Sooners’ senior running back, Marcelias Sutton, will not be able to play the rest of the season. He’s suffered a season-ending injury.247Sports first reported the news:Sources tell OUInsider.com’s RJ Young that senior RB Marcelias Sutton will miss the remainder of the season after sustaining a broken leg earlier in the week.Oklahoma has seen running backs Trey Sermon and Kennedy Brooks take the majority of the snaps as of late.Still, any hit at the running back position is a big one, with Oklahoma short due to Abdul Adams transferring to Syracuse and OU losing All-American Rodney Anderson early in the season to a torn ACL.Sutton, a senior running back, had totaled 152 yards and 2 touchdowns this season. He had also made a major impact in the special teams game.Oklahoma is set to play Texas Tech on Saturday.last_img read more

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LSU Star Reveals If UCF Could Play In The SEC

first_imgA UCF football helmet placed on the field.GLENDALE, AZ – JANUARY 01: A UCF Knights helmet sits on the field after the UCF Knights defeated the Baylor Bears 52-42 in the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl at University of Phoenix Stadium on January 1, 2014 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)UCF won 25 straight games before today’s loss to LSU in the Fiesta Bowl. It was a hell of a two-year run for the Knights.UCF was able to shake up college football and continue debate about the structure of the playoff. They also beat Auburn in the Peach Bowl last year, giving them a postseason win over an SEC team and fueling their claim they can play with anybody.LSU linebacker Devin White isn’t so sure though. White was a little less than complimentary of his opponent after the game.When asked about UCF’s physicality, White said he didn’t think it met SEC levels.Devin White on UCF’s physicality: “I don’t think they could play in the SEC week-in, week-out.” #LSU— Brody Miller (@BrodyAMiller) January 1, 2019For what it is worth, White and the LSU defense limited UCF to 250 yards of total offense, despite the fact the Tigers were missing multiple key players. That’s something they should feel good about.It is pretty clear that LSU is enjoying this win. SEC fans who partake in conference superiority are likely doing the same.It would be great to see UCF continue to get opportunities to test itself by playing Power 5 opponents in the coming years.last_img read more

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Saints’ Sean Payton: Kyler Murray’s Film Is ‘Too Good’

first_imgkyler murray looks to pass at the college football playoffMIAMI, FL – DECEMBER 29: Kyler Murray #1 of the Oklahoma Sooners carries the ball in the third quarter during the College Football Playoff Semifinal against the Alabama Crimson Tide at the Capital One Orange Bowl at Hard Rock Stadium on December 29, 2018 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)Heisman trophy winner Kyler Murray is increasingly looking like a top quarterback prospect. Even some NFL head coaches are starting to come out to praise the Oklahoma superstar.Speaking to NFL Network during the Scouting Combine, New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton spoke glowingly about Murray. Payton went so far as to call the film he’s seen on Murray “too good.”Payton spoke to NFL Network about the potential top Draft pick. Video, via The Checkdown:“His film is too good… it’s too good. And I like him.” – Sean Payton on @TheKylerMurray pic.twitter.com/Y0fISMMKDS— The Checkdown (@thecheckdown) March 1, 2019 Payton may just be making an observation, but Saints fans would have plenty of reason to read more into his words. While quarterback Drew Brees has shown few signs of slowing down, he will have to retire eventually – and his successor does not appear to be on the team’s roster right now.In addition, given that Drew Brees is among the shorter quarterbacks in the league, one can imagine Sean Payton is among the least concerned with Murray’s 5-foot-10 frame.The Saints don’t have a first round pick this year though, so unless Murray somehow falls to them at the 62nd overall pick, they may have to make a move if they have any hopes of getting him.Based on recent trends, it looks unlikely that Murray will escape the first round.Since 2009, each of the nine draft-eligible Heisman trophy winning quarterbacks has been drafted in the first round.last_img read more