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tata-martino-atlantaA huge win for Major League Soccer and expansion side Atlanta United FC, as the club announced that former Barcelona and Argentina coach Gerardo “Tata” Martino will oversee Atlanta’s first season in the MLS in 2017.

“This is an incredibly exciting and historic day for our club,” Atlanta United owner Arthur Blank said.

“Gerardo brings an unprecedented level of international experience to our head coaching position that will be a valuable asset to our players and demonstrates the continuing growth of Major League Soccer.

“We’re thrilled he’s chosen to join our club and look forward to welcoming him to Atlanta.”

DortmundAndre Schurrle came off the bench to ensure Borussia Dortmund claimed a 2-2 draw against Real Madrid as Cristiano Ronaldo scored his 95th Champions League goal.

Ronaldo reached the landmark when his first-time effort beat Dortmund goalkeeper Roman Burki to give the visitors a 1-0 lead but Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang stabbed home from close range to level just before half-time.

Raphael Varane restored Real’s advantage in the second half but substitute Schurrle’s late strike three minutes from time saw both sides share the spoils and stay level on four points in Group F.

Big Sam Fired By England

big-sam-englandEngland manager Sam Allardyce is sensationally out of a job after being fired by the Football Association for ‘inappropriate’ conduct and a ‘serious error of judgment’

Big Sam lasted only 67 days as England boss after being the target of an embarrassing Daily Telegraph sting. The Daily Telegraph film of Allardyce advising undercover reporters, who were posing as Far East businessmen, how to get around the FA’s third party ownership rules was among a number of indiscretions Wembley bosses considered hugely damaging to the reputation of the governing body.

A statement from the governing body issued on Tuesday night said:

Cesc Carries Chelsea To Victory In League Cup

New-Cesc-FabregasChelsea’s Cesc Fabregas answered critics that he does not score enough, scoring two terrific goals in extra-time to lead Chelsea to a thrilling victory over Leicester in the league cup on Tuesday night.

And for those who say that he does not run enough, there was an 80-yard sprint to celebrate the second with a knee-slide before more than three thousand traveling fans.

The Chelsea fans had been singing his name for much of the second-half as his influence grew and Leicester’s two-goal lead courtesy of Shinji Okazaki and some generous defending was wiped out.

Rampant Reds Run Wild Again

coutinho-newThere is a growing confidence on Merseyside that this could be a special season fir Jurgen Klopp’s side this season. The league might be beyond them, but a domestic cup is well within their realm of possibility, especially with Philippe Coutinho in this kind of mood.

Seven months ago Coutinho was inconsolable at Wembley after becoming one of three Liverpool players to miss in the League Cup final penalty shoot-out against Manchester City.

Klopp would love to go one stage better in the same competition and certainly Coutinho played as if on a mission to deliver.

arsene-wenger-pressSpending money does make a difference, it seems, as two of Arsenal’s big-money summer signings helped the Gunners into the fourth round of the league cuo.

Granit Xhaka and Lucas Perez, £47 million worth of talent, scored either side of half-time to set up a routine win for Arsenal ahead of their crunch derby against Chelsea on Saturday.

Forest’s fall from grace meant these two icons of English football had not faced each other since 1999. Last night was the 12th anniversary of Brian Clough’s death — an occasion marked by the Forest fans with a minute’s applause in the 12th minute.

hector-bellerinBarcelona have made the signing of Arsenal full back Hector Bellerin their top priority for next summer’s transfer window.

The Spaniard left Barca to join Arsene Wenger’s side five years, but could become the latest in a long line to return to the Catalan giants after moving away.

The defender has become a first-team fixture at the Emirates Stadium and has made his international debut after coming through the feted La Masia academy system.

And speaking in Sport, Barca vice-president, Jordi Mestre confirmed that Bellerin could follow in the footsteps of Cesc Fabregas, Gerard Pique, Jordi Alba and Denis Suarez in returning to the Nou Camp.

Inter v Juventus – Serie A Best Rivalry

inter2juve1Goals from Mauro Icardi and Ivan Perisic cancelled out Stephan Lichtsteiner’s opener for Juventus and Inter held on to clinch a deserved 2-1 ‘Derby d’Italia’ win that they fully deserved after a dominant display.

Stephan Lichesteiner opened the scoring for Massimiliano Allegri’s visitors against the run of play on 66 minutes, but Mauro Icardi continued his impressive form against Gianluigi Buffon by hitting the leveller just two minutes later.

Perisic then came off the bench to nod the winner from Icardi’s deft cross 12 minutes from time to send Inter up to seventh place in the table.

Mourinho-Old-TraffordJose Mourinho believes his players may be struggling under the pressure as Manchester United continue to suffer an alarming drop in form, and singled out Luke Shaw for criticism following Sunday’s defeat at Watford.

The Red Devils had not lost to Watford in 30 years but were deservedly beaten 3-1 at Vicarage Road, adding to derby defeat at home to Manchester City last weekend and Thursday night’s Europa League loss away to Feyenoord.

Etienne Capoue’s fourth goal of the season opened the scoring for the hosts. Marcus Rashford equalised in the 62nd minute with United’s first shot on target but Watford responded as substitute Camilo Zuniga fired them back in front having just come off the bench.

Wenger Savors “Convincing Win”

arsene-wenger-pressArsene Wenger was impressed by the way Arsenal brought a tough week to a convincing end at Hull.

Having required a last-gasp penalty to fortuitously secure victory against Southampton last weekend, the north Londoners rode their luck as they started their Champions League campaign with a draw at Paris St Germain.

Alexis Sanchez scored Tuesday’s late leveller and again proved integral as Hull were comprehensively overcome 4-1 at the KCOM Stadium, netting a brace that was complemented by a Theo Walcott effort and Granit Xhaka’s stunning stoppage-time strike.