Ex-Manchester United midfielder Philip Mulryne has been ordained as a deacon in the Catholic Church. Mulryne, who picked up 27 caps for Northern Ireland, was ordained on Saturday by the Archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin. The 38-year-old is a member of the Dominican Order and is expected to be ordained as a priest next year. Mulryne made his debut for Man Utd in 1997, before moving to Norwich City and later Leyton Orient.
Cristiano Ronaldo had quite the view as he stepped up to take his spot-kick against Alaves. Whereas most fans would try to put the opposition taking a penalty off by screaming and waving – these La Liga supporters are using the more private parts of their anatomy to district Cristiano Ronaldo . One chap, who isn’t wearing his shirt, has pulled down his trousers and presented his chap to the three-time Ballon d’Or winner. But he doesn’t just leave it dangling there, he’s making sure Ronaldo gains every inch of his attention by waving it around – and rather vigorously so. Who knows if the Real Madrid star saw it or not it, but it didn’t seem to affect Ronaldo who tucked away his penalty neatly.
The Barcelona FC team dressed in denim have arrived Manchester ahead of their UEFA Champions League game with Manchester City tomorrow at the Etihad Stadium. City lost 4 – 0 to Barca when the two teams met at the Nou Camp. The Barcelona team will stay at the five-star Lowry Hotel, sleeping under the same roof as the Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho. Tomorrow will be yet another opportunity for Guardiola to try and win his former club. He has lost to Barca at previous meetings. See more pictures after the cut.
Real Madrid defender Pepe is likely to be out for several weeks with a hamstring injury and could miss El Clasico. The 33-year-old Portugal defender was injured during the first half of Saturday’s 4-1 win over Alaves. Real confirmed Pepe “has been diagnosed with a grade two muscle injury in the femoral biceps of his left leg”. Spanish newspaper reports claim he is likely to be out for four to six weeks. Real face city rivals Atletico Madrid on 19 November and meet Barcelona on the first weekend of December.
Manchester United have shared some pictures of their latest training session – and it looks as though Bastian Schweinsteiger is back in the mix. He’s pictured alongside his teammates, complete with a bobble hat, as they prepare for Thursday’s Europa League game against Fenerbahce. Schweinsteiger had been training on his own after being told he wasn’t going to be picked by Jose Mourinho. Mourinho left him out of European squad and club wrote him off financially as a first team squad player last month in last set of accounts. More pictures after the cut.
Obafemi Martins’ move to China hasn’t always been smooth, but it has been undeniably lucrative and it’s about to get even more so. The former Seattle Sounders forward has reportedly signed a contract extension that will keep him at Shanghai Shenhua through 2017 and net him about $9 million. If Martins were still playing in MLS he’d need to be paid about $12-15 million in order to net that much, almost double what the highest paid players in the league get. It’s enough to put him safely in the Top 10 among the top paid players in the English Premier League.
Chelsea manager Antonio Conte hailed the performances of Marcos Alonso and Victor Moses at wing-back as being key to his side’s strong run of form. The duo made vital contributions in Chelsea’s 2-0 win over Southampton at St Mary’s, with Moses providing the assist for Eden Hazard’s opening goal. Alonso, who Conte signed from Fiorentina in August, is an established left-back but he has proved effective in a more advanced role, while Moses has defied his reputation as a fringe player by cementing his place in Chelsea’s starting line-up this season. Conte, who has utilised a 3-4-3 formation during Chelsea’s run of four consecutive Premier League victories, said: “This role is very important in this system because you must have good stamina and quality to play as a wing-back. “I ask my wing-backs to attack and defend. I think Moses is a great surprise in this aspect because we know him as a winger but I think he is playing in a fantastic way. “For Alonso it wasn’t easy to go into the English league and to play in this way.” Conte suggested that his squad contains enough strength in depth to use wing-backs throughout the season, adding: “We have to continue but I think Pedro can also play in this role, like Moses. “More defensively, [Branislav] Ivanovic or [Ola] Aina can play as wing-backs, but I’m pleased because I’m seeing a lot of positive things.”
French Ligue 1 outfit, Marseille, are exploring the possibility of signing John Mikel Obi from Chelsea during the winter transfer window, according to TuttoMercatoWeb. The Nigeria captain has entered the final year of his contract at Stamford Bridge, so is due to become a free agent next summer. That situation is likely to leave Chelsea open to offers in January, with Mikel having fallen out of favour again under Antonio Conte. His present condition at Chelsea is not unconnected to his decision to exit pre-season and proceed to Rio Olympics to represent Nigeria and which did not go down well with Conte. The 29-year-old has spent 10 years with the Blues, making well over 350 appearances and collecting numerous major honours, but it appears his days in west London are numbered.
Novak Djokovic is ready to fight for his world number one status as Andy Murray heads into this week’s Paris Masters looking to overtake the Serb. Murray, 29, won his third title in as many weeks with victory in Vienna on Sunday and could top the rankings with another good run in Paris. Four-time champion Djokovic says he is rejuvenated after a slump in form. “It makes me want to go on court and fight for every point because there is something to win at the end,” he said. The 12-time Grand Slam champion returns to action after losing in the Shanghai semi-finals two weeks ago. Djokovic, 29, has finished four of the past five years as the world number one and will hold on to the top ranking if he reaches the final in Paris. However, failure to do so would allow Murray to overtake him if the Scot can win, or if Murray reaches the final and Djokovic falls before the semis.
Ahmed Musa started for Leicester and scored the equalizer in the 48th minute as they drew 1 – 1 with Tottenham away at the White Hart Lane. He was replaced by Schlupp in the 68th minute.
Alex Iwobi started for Arsenal as they beat Sunderland 4 – 1 away at the Stadium of Light. He was replaced by Giroud in the 69th minute.
Victor Moses started for Chelsea played a good game as they beat Southampton 2 – 0 away at the St. Mary’s Stadium. He was replaced by Ivanovic in the 87th minute.
Odion Ighalo started for Watford and played the whole game as they beat Hull City 1 – 0 at home at the Vicarage Road.
Kelechi Iheanacho was an unused substitute for Manchester City as they beat West Brom 4 – 0 away at the Hawthorns.
Victor Anichebe was an unused substitute for Sunderland as they lost 4 – 10 at home to Arsenal at the Stadium of Light.
Isaac Success was not selected for Watford’s game against Hull City. Mikel Obi was also not selected for Chelsea’s game against Southampton – The inspiring Super Eagles captain continues to pay the price for leaving Chelsea’s pre-season to represent Nigeria at the Rio Olympics where he won a Bronze medal.
Real Madrid and Wales forward Gareth Bale has extended his contract with the Spanish giants until 2022. The 27-year-old arrived at the Bernabeu from Premier League side Tottenham Hotspur on a six-year deal in 2013 for a then world record fee of £85m. He has helped Real win five trophies in the past three seasons, including the Champions League twice, and scored 62 goals in 135 appearances. Midfielders Luka Modric and Toni Kroos have also signed new deals this month. Bale’s contract is reportedly worth £600,000 per week, £350,000 after tax.
Nigeria manager Gernot Rohr has named his 24-man squad for next month’s 2018 World Cup qualifier against Algeria in Uyo. Judging from the last squad that played against Zambia, there are recalls for Oghenekaro Etebo, Victor Moses, Odion Ighalo, John Ogu, Dele Alampasu and Leon Balogun. Tyronne Ebuehi is being called up for the first time.
The Full Squad:
Goalkeepers: Carl Ikeme (Wolverhampton Wanderers, England); Ikechukwu Ezenwa (FC Ifeanyi Ubah, Nigeria); Dele Alampasu (FC Cesarense, Portugal)
Defenders: Leon Balogun (FSV Mainz 05, Germany); William Troost-Ekong (Haugesund FC, Norway); Kenneth Omeruo (Alanyaspor FC, Turkey); Uche Henry Agbo (Granada FC, Spain); Tyronne Ebuehi (ADO Den Haag, The Netherlands); Abdullahi Shehu (Anorthosis Famagusta, Cyprus); Musa Muhammed (Istanbul Basaksehir, Turkey); Elderson Echiejile (Standard Liege, Belgium), Kingsley Madu (SV Zulte Waregem, Belgium)
Midfielders: John Mikel Obi (Chelsea FC, England); Ogenyi Onazi (Trabzonspor FC, Turkey); Wilfred Ndidi (KRC Genk, Belgium); Oghenekaro Etebo (CD Feirense, Portugal); John Ogu (Hapoel Be’er Sheva, Israel)
Forwards: Ahmed Musa (Leicester City, England); Kelechi Iheanacho (Manchester City, England); Moses Simon (KAA Gent, Belgium); Victor Moses (Chelsea FC, England); Odion Ighalo (Watford FC, England); Brown Ideye (Olympiacos FC, Greece); Alex Iwobi (Arsenal FC, England)
Jose Mourinho’s criticism of Antonio Conte in the aftermath of Manchester United’s 4-0 defeat to Chelsea was justified, according to former Spain manager Vicente Del Bosque. Reports suggest Mourinho accused the Blues boss of ‘humiliating’ him with his animated behaviour on the touchline throughout the encounter at Stamford Bridge. The pair were captured exchanging words at the final whistle and Del Bosque, who masterminded Spain’s 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012 wins, believes Mourinho has every right to feel aggrieved. ‘It did not seem like a wrong message from Mourinho to Conte,’ Del Bosque told AS. ‘Sometimes Conte has to be a little more considerate when he celebrates victories, really. ‘I was also hurt when we played against Italy at Euro 2016. ‘I’m not saying don’t express joy, there’s no need to be as dull as me, but express a moderate joy. It is not that I am a defender of Mourinho, but he had a point.’
South Africa have dismissed former Bournemouth star Tokelo Rantie from the national team after he farted at boss Ephraim Mashaba. The 26-year-old allegedly dropped his trousers and farted during the last international break. Rantie, who joined the Cherries in 2013 for a club-record £2.5million, was immediately kicked out of the training camp. And his international future now looks to be at an end despite being in good form for new Turkish club Genclerbirligi.
Liverpool have beaten Stoke to the signing of promising Bury teenager Emeka Obi. The 15-year-old has agreed to join the Anfield club once they get approval from the Football League and Premier League over his visa as he has Nigerian heritage. Obi, who is already 6ft 5ins tall, has already appeared for the League One club’s first team and had a trial with Stoke during the summer. He has been described by Bury manager David Flitcroft as the ‘best talent at 15 years old in the entire country’.
Algeria have appointed Georges Leekens for a second spell as their national coach. The Belgian, who previously led the team in 2003, replaces Milovan Rajevac, who was ousted by reported player power earlier this month. Thursday’s appointment came just 16 days before Algeria play Nigeria in a 2018 World Cup qualifier. “This choice was unanimously approved by members of the federal bureau,” said the Algerian federation in a statement. “The commission, having consulted several coaches, had decided on a shortlist of five trainers.” Leekens is the third Algeria coach this year after Serbia’s Rajevac replaced Frenchman Christian Gourcuff, who surprisingly stepped down in April with two years left on his contract. The 67-year-old takes charge just two days after losing his job at Belgian side Lokeren, who have lost eight out of 12 games this season. The bespectacled coach led Algeria for four months in 2003 before leaving for ‘family reasons’ just days after qualifying the team for the 2004 Nations Cup.
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has been charged with misconduct by the Football Association for his comments about referee Anthony Taylor prior to the goalless draw at Liverpool. Taylor’s appointment for the Oct. 17 clash drew criticism from some, as he was born around six miles away from Old Trafford, and Keith Hackett, the former head of the Professional Game Match Officials Limited body, said the appointment would place undue pressure on the referee. When those comments were put to Mourinho ahead of the match, the United boss said: “I think Mr Taylor is a very good referee but I think somebody with intention is putting such a pressure on him that I feel that it will be difficult for him to have a very good performance.”