Sports Bulletin: Friday, April 9th, 2021
- Europa League Recap: Arsenal 1-1 Slavia Prague, Granada 0-2 & more Manchester United
- Transfer Talk: Aguero, Mbappe, Vinicius, Cavani, Haaland, Coutinho, & More
- Edo 2020 National Sports Festival continues today
UEFA Europa League Quarter-final Round Up: All the action and reaction from Thursday night football
Emirates Stadium: Arsenal 1-1 Slavia Prague
Arsenal have it all to do in the second leg after Slavia Prague scored a dramatic stoppage time equaliser to deny the Gunners a first leg win in their Europa League quarter-final clash Thursday night.
Nigerian striker Peter Olayinka started the game for the away side but it was Ivory Coast international Nicolas Pepe who came off the bench to score what looked like the winner in the 86th minute, but a close range header in the 93rd minute by Tomas Holes ensured the game ended in a stalemate heading into next week’s return leg in Prague.
Despite his side conceding late, Gunners boss Mikel Arteta is adamant his side still has what it takes to progress to the semi-finals.
“The mindset has to be to go there and score goals and win the game because we have to score if we want to go through.
“I totally believe that we can go there and win the match, if not I wouldn’t be sitting here.”Arsenal manager, Mikel Arsenal
Granada 0-2 Manchester United
Marcus Rashford and Bruno Fernandes scored in each half as Manchester United inflicted a home defeat on Spanish side Granada in the first leg of their Europa League quarter-final tie.
Rashford, who shook off a knock he suffered in last weekend’s win against Brighton in time to make the trip to the south of Spain, gave United the lead on the half-hour mark after a sensational first touch to control a long ball from Victor Lindleöf, before placing the ball into the bottom corner past Rui Silva.
It wasn’t to end without a Bruno Fernandes goal. On the stroke of fulltime, the center referee pointed to the spot after Fernandes was fouled in the area by Yan Brice and he held his nerves to convert his spot kick as United took a big step towards the semi-finals.
Scotland midfielder Scott McTominay, alongside England defenders Luke Shaw and Harry Maguire will be unavailable for the second leg after all three picked up yellow cards in Spain.
“It’s not a perfect night. We got three yellow cards and suspensions but a 2-0 result is very good,” United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer told BT Sport at fulltime.
“We know how difficult it is to come to Spain to get a result like this and I’m very happy with the result.
“Marcus and Bruno have been exceptional for us and are so important. The first goal was a very good run from Marcus, he took the ball fantastically and a good finish, and Bruno is so good on penalties.
“We want to win every game of football. It’s still a young, learning team and we have to improve all the time. It catches you so quickly if you rest and we can’t have any other approach other than to go forward and try to score goals.”
From other centers
- Samuel Chukwueze came on as a second half substitute as Gerard Moreno’s penalty in first half injury-time saw Spanish side Villarreal grab a slender win away at Croatia’s Dinamo Zagreb.
- Elsewhere, Italy’s AS Roma produced a remarkable second half comeback to defeat Dutch side Ajax at the Johan Cruyff Arena in Amsterdam. Davy Klaassen benefitted from Dusan Tadic’s assist to put the home side in the lead six minutes before the break but Roma, relentless in the second half, equalised through Lorenzo Pellegrini in the 57th minute, before Brazilian defender Ibañez broke Ajax hearts with a late winner three minutes from time.
Full time results
- Arsenal 1 – 1 Slavia Prague
- Granada 0 – 2 Manchester Utd
- Ajax 1 – 2 AS Roma
- Dinamo Zagreb 0 – 1 Villarreal
Transfer Talk: Aguero, Mbappe, Vinicius, Cavani, Haaland, Coutinho, & More
- Leeds United have joined the race to sign Manchester City’s Argentine striker Sergio Aguero, 32, when his contract expires at the end of the season, according to 90min.
- France striker Kylian Mbappe’s future at Paris St-Germain hangs in the balance as the 22-year-old continues to resist signing a new deal, according to the Telegraph.
- Mbappe will not sign a new contract at PSG because he wants to join Real Madrid, according to Cuatro.
- Real Madrid are prepared to use Brazil forward Vinicius Junior, 20, in a deal to sign Mbappe this summer, according to El Chiringuito, via Metro.
- Real’s 29-year-old Spanish winger Lucas Vazquez, whose contract expires at the end of the season, has not committed his future to the Bernabeu amid interest from Manchester United and Chelsea, according to the Sun.
- Manchester United and Uruguay forward Edinson Cavani, 34, is “closer than ever” to a deal to join Boca Juniors this summer, according to ESPN.
- Manchester United will explore the possibility of signing England midfielder Declan Rice, 22, in any deal with West Ham for compatriot Jesse Lingard, 28, according to the Athletic.
- Chelsea may target both Borussia Dortmund’s Norway striker Erling Braut Haaland, 20, and Manchester City’s Aguero this summer, according to 90min.
- Lyon have set a £25m asking price for Danish centre-back Joachim Andersen, 24, who is currently on loan at Fulham. Manchester United and Tottenham are considering a move, according to Metro.
- West Ham are interested in signing Venezuela midfielder Yangel Herrera. The 23-year-old is on loan at Granada from Manchester City, according to Todofichajes.
- Leeds have been priced out of a move for PSV Eindhoven and England Under-21 midfielder Noni Madueke. PSV would want in the region of £20-25m for the 19-year-old – more than Leeds would be willing to pay, according to Football Insider.
- Japan winger Takumi Minamino, 26, says he was “surprised” by Liverpool’s decision to loan him to Southampton in January, according to the Independent.
- The Saints are in negotiations to extend English forward Theo Walcott’s stay at St Mary’s. The 32-year-old is currently on a season-long loan from fellow Premier League side Everton, according to Southern Echo.
- Liverpool have identified AZ Alkmaar’s 23-year-old Dutch midfielder Teun Koopmeiners as a potential replacement for compatriot Georginio Wijnaldum, 30, according to AS.
- Brighton manager Graham Potter says he is keen to extend English striker Danny Welbeck’s stay at the club, but talks will not take place until the summer, according to Sky Sports.
- Chelsea and Italy midfielder Jorginho 29, says he would like to return to former club Napoli before the end of his career, according to Sky Sport Italia.
- France forward Ousmane Dembele, 23, will sign a new contract at Barcelona, according to Marca.
- Championship leaders Norwich City are monitoring VVV-Venlo’s Greek striker Giorgos Giakoumakis, 26, according to Teamtalk.
- Former Liverpool midfielder and Brazil international Philippe Coutinho, 28, is among nine players who will be put up for sale by Barcelona this summer, according to Mirror.
- Brazil winger Willian, 32, is determined to succeed at Arsenal despite a difficult first season at the club since joining from Premier League rivals Chelsea, according to Mirror.
- Sevilla are interested in Wolves’ Spanish striker Rafa Mir, 23, who is currently on loan at La Liga club Huesca, according to La Razon.
Edo 2020 National Sports Festival
The Edo 2020 National Sports Festival will continue as scheduled after hosts, the Edo State government and the Federal Government held positive talks on Wednesday.
The event was on the verge of getting shut down following a lack Federal Government funding causing the hosts to reconsider their stance.
Edo State Deputy Governor Philip Shaibu explained that the decision to shut down the festival was not made to threaten the Federal Government, but for the hosts to better understand their stance in the successful hosting of the games.
Track & Field Events Underway Today
The Olympics-bound trio of Ese Brume, Grace Nwokocha and Orukpe Eraiyokan are in action as the track and field events get underway at the Edo 2020 National Sports Festival in Benin City today.
Nigeria’s Ministry of Youth and Sports has also acknowledged national sprints champion Nwokocha, alongside Eraiyokan and Chidi Anthony Okezie as some of the athletes to watch at the event which starts 7.00 a.m. today and runs through April 14.
The National Sports festival has historically birthed some of the most successful athletes to come out of Nigeria, including two-time Olympics bronze medalist Mary Onyali, Fatimah Yusuf, Henry Amike, Yusuf Alli among others.
On the medals standings, Team Delta lead the park with 32 Gold, 25 Silver and 15 Bronze, while Team Bayelsa follow closely in second with 20 Gold,8 Silver and 21 Bronze. HostsHosts Team Edo complete the top with 18 Gold, 21 Silver and 21 Bronze.
Luka Doncic bagged 27 points, while Kristaps Porzingis got 26 points and 17 rebounds as the Dallas Mavericks triumphed 116-101 over the Milwaukee Bucks, who were without team talisman, Giannis Antetokounmpo for the game on Thursday night.
Porzingis, playing in consecutive days for the first time in two months scored an impressive 11 points in the fourth quarter alone, including straight 3-pointers.
“It felt good. To just come in right away and hit that pump-fake 3. After you hit one like that, you feel in good rhythm and got a couple more.”Kristaps Porzingis, Dallas Mavericks
NBA Scores – Thursday, April 8th
- Miami Heat 110 – 104 Los Angeles Lakers
- Toronto Raptors 113 – 122 Chicago Bulls
- Oklahoma City Thunder 102 – 129 Cleveland Cavaliers
- Dallas Mavericks 116 – 101 Milwaukee Bucks
- Los Angeles Clippers 113 – 103 Phoenix Suns
- Sacramento Kings 101 – 113 Detroit Pistons
- Utah Jazz 122 – 103 Portland Trailblazers