Lionel Messi struggling to settle at PSG, Declan Rice's West Ham WONDER goal, Wilshere Arsenal transfer LATEST

DECLAN RICE scored arguably the goal of the season so far as West Ham won 2-0 at Dinamo Zagreb.

Meanwhile Leicester were held 2-2 in a thrilling draw with Napoli and Rangers were beaten 2-0 by an impressive Lyon performance in the Europa League.

And in the Europa Conference league Spurs were held to a 2-2 draw at Rennes.

And all is reportedly not well for Lionel Messi at Paris Saint-Germain, with Angel di Maria admitting he's struggling to settle in and find a family home.

Elsewhere there are updates on the condition of footballing icon Pele, 80, who is recovering after having a tumour removed.

Meanwhile, Jack Wilshere's future could soon be resolved with former club Arsenal set to let the former midfielder train with them, opening the door to a potential comeback.

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  • Giacomo Pisa

    WEEKEND FIXTURES

    Here's a look at the Premier League fixtures scheduled for this weekend.

    The standout fixture has to be Sunday's clash between fierce rivals Tottenham and Chelsea.

    But football fans will have to wait until the end of Matchday Five to see that eagerly anticipated clash.

    • Newcastle vs Leeds (Fri, 8pm)
    • Wolves vs Brentford (Sat, 12.30pm)
    • Liverpool vs Crystal Palace (Sat, 3pm)
    • Manchester City vs Southampton (Sat, 3pm)
    • Norwich vs Watford (Sat, 3pm)
    • Aston Villa vs Everton (Sat, 5.30pm)
    • Brighton vs Leicester (Sun, 2pm)
    • West Ham vs Manchester United (Sun, 2pm)
    • Tottenham vs Chelsea (Sun, 4.30pm)

    BARC-ING MAD

    Barcelona hope to sign Manchester United ace Paul Pogba for FREE next summer but will be rivalled by top clubs, reports say.

    According to Fichajes.net, Pogba’s name came up in conversations between his agent Mino Raiola and Barca club president Joan Laporta.

    The super agent informed Laporta that Pogba would certainly be subject to a bidding war.

    But should Barca put an offer forward, he will try and convince the Frenchman to decide on Barca’s offer before other proposals.

    Barca would have to see off challenges from rivals Real Madrid, super team Paris Saint-Germain and Juventus to secure the World Cup winner’s signature.

    RICE RICE BABY

    Declan Rice helped West Ham United to a famous European win last night.

    The 22-year-old midfielder was instrumental in the 2-0 away win against Dinamo Zagreb, and even capped off his performance with a stunning goal.

    Rice has been heavily linked with a move to Manchester United or Chelsea at the end of the season, but is currently enjoying a stellar start to the campaign with the Hammers.

    And goals like this will only add to his reported £100million price tag.

    • Giacomo Pisa

      BIELSA BALL

      Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa has been typically cryptic in the build-up to his side's Friday night clash against Newcastle United.

      In response to criticism he has put on himself, he said: "I am never critical of my job or my labour without explaining why and I did it in the press conference beforehand.

      "The job of a manager is not measured by the quality of the resources that he has but by those resources obtaining the result that we are looking for.

      "Normally I don't have problem diagnosing the problems that we suffer but knowing what the problems are doesn't mean having a solution for them or solving them.

      "You start using different resources and it is only good how you manage it if the reality changes."

    • Giacomo Pisa

      LINEKER'S LOW-DOWN

      Leicester City fan Gary Lineker has also aimed a dig at referee Tiago Martins for his officiating during the draw against Napoli.

      The 60-year-old took to Twitter after the game to praise the action at the King Power, which 'even the referee couldn't spoil' after Wilfred Ndidi was sent off late on.

      The Match of the Day presenter tweeted: “Cracking game of football.

      “Some excellent goals. Two very good sides. Even the referee couldn’t spoil it.

      “Wouldn’t at all be surprised if Napoli win Serie A.”

    • Giacomo Pisa

      BRENDAN'S BLUES

      Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers has slammed last night's referee, Tiago Martins, for his officiating at the King Power Stadium.

      Speaking in his post-match press conference on Wilfred Ndidi's 93rd minute red card, Rodgers said: "I don't think the referee was very good all night, to be honest.

      "I thought he [Ndidi] was unfortunate, he's picked up the [first] booking early on and he's done really well to get through to that point in the game.

      "He's obviously fighting to try and get across to stop the attacker getting away.

      "So yeah it was a little bit harsh, I think the first one was [also] a little bit harsh, but I didn't think the referee was great to be honest."

    • Giacomo Pisa

      GAME DAY

      Matchday Five of the 2021/22 Premier League season is already upon us.

      Leeds United travel to St. James' Park this evening to take on Steve Bruce's Newcastle United.

      The clash represents a chance for both sides to pick up their first wins of the season, after poor starts to the campaign.

      Marcelo Bielsa's side are currently 17th in the Premier League table after two wins and two draws from four games, while Steve Bruce's side are 19th having just one point from a possible twelve so far.

      The Whites will be without Pascal Struijk after their appeal for his red card following the defender's challenge on Harvey Elliott last week was not overturned.

    • Giacomo Pisa

      BLUES THE BEST

      Former Liverpool man Mark Lawrenson has tipped Chelsea to win the title this season, ahead of his old side.

      The 64-year-old has been impressed with the start Thomas Tuchel's side have made to the campaign.

      And writing for the BBC, Lawrenson said: "I would say Chelsea are the best team I have seen in the Premier League so far this season.

      "Not just in the games where they have played well and won, but also in terms of winning when they don't.

      "I am not sure any of the other teams who have got a chance of the title are in that mode yet."

    • Jack Figg

      OVERNIGHT ROUND-UP

      Manchester United, City and Liverpool are monitoring Jude Bellingham's stand-out start to the season.

      Borussia Dortmund's England stylist, 18, is again being linked with several of Europe's top clubs.

      And Bellingham's classy midweek goal against Besiktas showed why there could be a huge bidding war next summer.

      Meanwhile, after Liverpool and Manchester City's thrilling victories that same Wednesday night, yesterday was almost as dramatic in the lesser European competitions.

      Manager David Moyes is "really excited" to see what West Ham can achieve after his high-fliers opened their Europa League campaign with a 2-0 triumph at Dinamo Zagreb.

      Michail Antonio's fifth goal this term and Declan Rice's solo special saw off the Croatian champs.

      But Leicester's 2-2 home Europa League draw with Napoli was marred by crowd violence.

      Victor Osimhen’s superb double, including an 87th minute leveller, had earlier cancelled out fine Foxes' goals from Ayoze Perez and Harvey Barnes.

      Tottenham's 2-2 Europa Conference League draw at Rennes was tarnished by injuries leaving Lucas Moura and Steven Bergwijn doubtful for Sunday’s home Prem clash with Chelsea.

      Finally, Gareth Southgate believes the reaction to England’s Euro 2020 final shootout loss showed the country at its “very worst”.

      Bukayo Saka, Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho faced racist abuse online after missing penalties against Italy, whilst disorder also broke out.

      Three Lions' chief Southgate said: “However far we’ve progressed, that one moment showed us how much there is to do."

    • Ian Tuckey

      MARC’S TO THE MAX

      Marcus Rashford looked sharp in training following an operation on his shoulder.

      The forward, 23, had surgery on an injury after Euro 2020 in July, which kept him out for the beginning of the season.

      But he was spotted looking fit and healthy as United trained for the first time since their shock Champions League defeat to Young Boys on Tuesday.

      Rashford has enjoyed a quick recovery having been expected to return in late October.

      The England forward decided to undergo an operation after the Three Lions’ final defeat to Italy in the summer.

      He had been playing with a muscle tear in his shoulder since last November.

      And he has timed his return to action well, with Ole Gunnar Solskajer currently without Edinson Cavani.

      The Red Devils boss confirmed earlier this week that the Uruguayan is likely to be out for one-two weeks – but would not reveal his injury.

    • Ian Tuckey

      FOREST IN COOP D'ETAT

      Nottingham Forest are set to barter with Swansea City over a compensation fee for Steve Cooper as they look to appoint Chris Hughton's replacement.

      Forest parted company with the former Newcastle United and Brighton boss on Thursday morning after Wednesday night's 2-0 defeat by Middlesbrough left them rock bottom of the Championship.

      The result maintained Forest's worst start to a season for more than a century after Hughton managed just one point from his first seven league fixtures.

      City Ground chiefs swiftly identified former Swansea boss Cooper as the man they want to become their 20th manager in 10 years.

      And they believe the 41-year-old can restore their flagging fortunes.

      However they will have to pay compensation for the coach who led Swansea to back-to-back play-offs and made his name leading England's Under-17 kids to world youth cup glory.

      Cooper still had one year left to run on his three year Swansea contract when he left the Swans by mutual agreement after two seasons in charge in July.

      Part of that severance agreement was that the Welsh club would still be entitled to a compensation fee if Cooper joined another club within the remaining 12 months of his deal.

    • Ian Tuckey

      VIOLENCE FLARES AT KING POWER

      Leicester's Europa League clash with Napoli descended into violence in the King Power stands at the end of the match.

      It looked like it would be an evening to remember for the Foxes as goals from Ayoze Perez and Harvey Barnes put them 2-0 up.

      But a brilliant double from Victor Osimhen secured a point for Napoli, and there was worse to come.

      Wilfred Ndidi was sent off in the dying minutes before violence erupted between the two sets of supporters.

      A bust-up involving around 20-30 fans was sparked and involved plastic bottles being thrown.

      Police were called in to calm things down as a group of Leicester fans scrambled over safety netting to attack Napoli supporters.

      An appeal went out over the King Power's speaker system asking fans to "respect your club" by "moving away from the segregation line".

      It was not clear how the violence started but fans were generally well behaved throughout the 90 minutes.

    • Ian Tuckey

      REACTION TO EURO LOSS WAS 'COUNTRY AT IT WORST'

      Gareth Southgate believes the reaction to England's Euro 2020 final shootout loss showed the country at its "very worst".

      Bukayo Saka, Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho faced racist abuse online after missing penalties against Italy, whilst the night included violence and disorder.

      Southgate said: “We were seeing the very worst about our country, we were seeing the very worst, if you like, about our country, having been so close to a moment where none of that would probably have happened.

      “That was hugely disappointing.

      "There is not achieving what we wanted to achieve as a team, but to see our country in that light, under the microscope – because the rest of the world are looking at us at those moments – it just said to me we’ve got a lot of work to do.

      “However far we’ve progressed, that one moment showed us how much there is to do.

      “But I would also say the counter-reaction to (what happened to) the three boys, and the wave of support, was also really heartening because I think that was genuine and it was a little bit like when we were taking the knee and getting booed by certain sections.

      “The tidal wave and direction of travel is in the opposite direction. And it’s just a reminder that sometimes you’ve got to live through that pain to be able to make a difference.”

    • Ian Tuckey

      LINEKER CHEERS ON FOXES

      Gary Lineker cheered on his beloved Leicester in their 2-2 draw with Napoli after quitting his BT Sport role to watch the Foxes' Europa League campaign.

      And he would have been very happy with that decision at half-time, as Leicester lead 1-0 through Ayoze Perez.

      Harvey Barnes doubled the lead after the break, moments after Patson Daka was denied his first Leicester goal – VAR ruled out his strike for offside by the tightest of margins.

      But Lineker's delight turned to anguish because of one man – Napoli star Victor Osimhen.

      The striker was a handful throughout the first-half and got his reward with a brilliant goal after the break, chipping Kasper Schmeichel to grab one back for his team.

      And with minutes remaining he towered above Caglar Soyuncu before nestling his header into the far corner for the equaliser.

    • Ian Tuckey

      RESULT: LEICESTER 2 NAPOLI 2

      Victor Osimhen's superb double, including an 87th minute leveller, overturned Leicester's 2-0 lead in a lively Europa League Group C drew.

      And shortly before Wilfried Ndidi's stoppage-time red-card for two bookings Napoli almost snatched victory.

      Ayoze Perez and Harvey Barnes seemed to have put the Foxes on course for victory, but the Italian giants fought back for a deserved point.

      Click here for our full match report.

    • Ian Tuckey

      AKE SCORED MINUTES AFTER HIS DAD PASSED AWAY

      Nathan Ake has revealed his first ever Champions League goal came just minutes after his father passed away.

      The defender, 26, headed in Manchester City's opener in Wednesday's 6-3 rout of RB Leipzig at the Etihad.

      And the Dutch international dedicated the special moment to his dad Moise – who had died surrounded by his family that evening.

      Ake said: “On Wednesday, after a difficult time I scored my first Champions League goal – and only a few minutes after my dad passed away peacefully with my mum and brother by his side.

      “Maybe it was meant to be, watching me play always made him proud and happy.

      “I know you're always with me, you will always be in my heart and this one was for you dad.

      “The past few weeks have been the toughest of my life, my dad has been very ill and there was no more treatment possible.

      “I was lucky to have a lot of support from my fiancé, family and friends.”

      .

    • Ian Tuckey

      SON SUPPORTED MAN UTD

      Tottenham hero Son Heung-min has admitted he was a Manchester United fan as a kid thanks to South Korean icon Park Ji-sung.

      Park, now 40, played more than 200 games for the Red Devils between 2005 and 2012 to help Sir Alex Ferguson's side achieve considerable success.

      When asked by Pro:Direct who he supported as a youngster, Son, 29, revealed: "Manchester United because obviously Ji-sung was playing.

      "He’s a national hero. In Korea also they would say he has two hearts. He’s a national hero for me. He’s a good friend of mine.

      "He offered to the players from South Korea [the way to play], he gave us hope and the opportunity.

      "It’s not easy, you know, he was the first one that played in the Premier League. So I was supporting United, but I can’t now!"

      Park was an integral part of Fergie's last great Man Utd team, winning four Prem titles and the Champions League in 2008, among other trophies.

      He also helped South Korea reach the semi-finals of the World Cup in 2002 on home soil – their best performance to date.

    • Ian Tuckey

      CROCKS MOURA AND BERGWIJN ADD TO SPURS WOE

      Spurs face an injury crisis up front with Lucas Moura and Steven Bergwijn doubtful for Sunday’s home Premier League game with Chelsea.

      Already without South Korea superstar Son Heung-Min, boss Nuno Espirito Santo saw two more forwards pick up injuries in tonight's 2-2 draw at Rennes.

      It means that aside from central striker Harry Kane, Spurs have just Dele Alli and Bryan Gil available in supporting roles.

      And it could force Nuno to change shape yet again, having seen a midfield diamond flop against Crystal Palace last weekend.

      The Spurs boss said: “It’s really painful, it’s too early to say for Sunday.

      “The physios are working with them. It’s been terrible, I must be honest.

      “Let’s not hide behind nothing. After the Watford game, everything that has happened has not been very good for us.

      “We scored then we lost control. We played a good team who caused some problems.

      “It is hard to judge the game, I think we finished well. Rennes were a hard team to play but the attitude was good.”

    • Ian Tuckey

      BIELSA WANTS EXPLANATION OVER STRUIJK RED CARD

      Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa wants the FA to explain why it uphelp Pascal Struijk's red card for a challenge on Harvey Elliott. 

      The FA says Struijk's innocuous-looking merited a sending-off to ensure players improve their decision-making.

      But Liverpool whizkid Elliott, who faces six months with a dislocated left ankle, has been among many critics of the verdict.

      Elliott, 18, described Struijk as blameless for the "freak accident" in the Reds' 3-0 win at Elland Road on Sunday.

      And Bielsa told Sky Sports: "The majority of the plays that are similar to this one don't generate the consequences this one generated.

      "That's why the injured player admits there was no bad intention," said Bielsa ahead of Leeds' visit to Newcastle on Friday, live on Sky Sports.

      "I understand those that judge and decide have different arguments to the ones I've spoken about, and the ones the injured player has spoken about, and their arguments are the ones that decide the outcome.

      "It's good that it's this way. What would be useful is to receive information which gave an explanation how to avoid these casual things from generating an injury."

    • Ian Tuckey

      ARTETA 'SEES THE LIGHT'

      Mikel Arteta claims he can "really see the light" as Arsenal prepare for Saturday's trip to Burnley after earning their first points of the season last weekend.

      Boss Arteta told the Gunners; media team: "Things happen for a reason and maybe what is happening had to happen and [maybe] it’s going to be really good for the club and really good for myself and everybody experiencing that situation. We have to believe that

      "I can really see the light. I’m telling you I’m very positive most of the time.

      "I’ve seen the light and I can see bright lights. There can be bumps in the road within that light, but I can see a lot of light."

    • Ian Tuckey

      FOOTY PRESENTER SCARED BY MAN FOLLOWING HER

      Footy presenter Emma Jones has revealed how she was left terrified after being followed while out shopping.

      Emma – who fronts coverage on Leeds TV and also works for the BBC – said she had to seek refuge in a shop and call for help.

      She said: “I was shopping alone when a man started following me. I walked into the shop to get away from him but he followed me in and wouldn’t leave me alone.

      “A security guard and every staff member saw and proceeded to remove him from the shop and kept him away from me.”

      Writing on Twitter Emma, 30, added: “This isn’t the first time I’ve been followed, but it is the first time anyone has stepped in to help. And I cannot express how much this helped me.

      "The reason I’m telling you this is because I think we sometimes see uncomfortable situations and choose to ignore it.

      “I will be writing to the shopping centre staff to tell them how thankful I am.”

      Earlier this year the presenter told how she’s regularly bombarded with explicit messages by ‘fans’.

    • Ian Tuckey

      JT KEEN ON FOREST JOB

      John Terry is keen on the Nottingham Forest job, writes ALAN NIXON.

      Chelsea legend Terry wants to be a manager after working as Dean Smith’s assistant at Aston Villa.

      Forest dismissed Chris Hughton as head coach and Steven Reid will take temporary charge on an interim basis.

      Having left Villa, the former Blues captain recently expressed his desire to move into the top job.

      Terry told Sky Sports: “Obviously [I’m] always waiting [for a management job].

      “But the idea was to step away, spend a year with the family and then see what comes up.

      “We’re a month into the season, I’m sure jobs will come up and I’m there and waiting and doing what I need to do in the background.

      “But if not, I’m enjoying my time with my family”

    • Ian Tuckey

      RESULT: RENNES 2 SPURS 2

      Sub Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg rescued much-changed Spurs late on in their Europa Conference League opener at the French strugglers

      Rennes defender Loic Bade deflected in Lucas Moura's low cross early on but Flavien Tait curled a deserved leveller on 23 minutes.

      The hosts edged the chances after the break, Gaetan Laborde pouncing form close range in the 72nd minute.

      But Hojbjerg soon tucked in Matt Doherty's cross to earn Tottenham a Group G draw.

      Click on our match blog for news and reaction.

    • Ian Tuckey

      RESULT: DINAMO ZAGREB 0 WEST HAM 2

      Michail Antonio's fifth goal of the season and Declan Rice's solo effort on his 150th appearance opened West Ham's Europa League Group H campaign with a fine victory.

      Striker Antonio punished Kevin Theophile-Catherine's underhit pass on 21 minute.

      Then five minutes after the break Rice won the ball well, surged forward and drilled home left-footed.

      It's the Hammers' first win in Europe since 1999, except for qualifiers.

    • Ian Tuckey

      I GOT YOUR BAA-K, RON

      Patrice Evra has dipped into the tale of pal Cristiano Ronaldo having to swap mansions due to noisy sheep – by whistling up a watery solution.

      Deadpan Evra tweeted a clip of himself on a boat with sheep – as he blew a whistle to show he was in control.

      The former France defender posted for the attention of his ex-Manchester United team-mate: “I got your back bro @cristiano Ronaldo Twitter you finally going to be able to sleep.”

      Ewe couldn’t make it up!

      Cristiano Ronaldo switches mansions after bleating sheep kept waking him up

      Source: Read Full Article