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Bills Today: Benjamin's beautiful TD overturned by controversial call

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Sunday’s touchdown that was stripped from Kelvin Benjamin was the latest controversial catch to be overturned. This is happening all around the NFL, and Buffalo was the latest victim against New England.

Bills quarterback, Tyrod Taylor, threw a four-yard pass to wide receiver, Kelvin Benjamin, that was initially ruled a touchdown on the field. After a lengthy replay, the call was reversed and ruled incomplete.

“When the receiver got confirmed control of the football, he was not able to get both feet down in bounds,” referee Craig Wrolstad said. “So, his back foot was already off the ground and it stepped out of bounds. His firm control did not occur until after he had one foot off the ground.”

The displeasure with the call being overturned was heard throughout the league. FOX Sports NFL and college football rules analyst, Dean Blandino, posted a explaining the controversial play. Blandino served as the league’s VP of officiating from 2013-2016. He was adamant that Benjamin’s TD should have stood.

Blandino’s opinion seemed to be the common consensus throughout the league. Bills head coach, Sean McDermott, wasn’t a fan of the call either.

“I’m at a loss. I’m at a loss really. I saw it as a touchdown,” said McDermott. “Other than that I’m at a loss for how a play like that can get overturned.”

The two-minute offense Buffalo ran to set up that play was exceptional. They marched over 70 yards in under two minutes to get the ball on New England’s four-yard line with six seconds left in the first half.

“I thought it was great in terms of management of the clock and being able to execute at a high level with six seconds left,” said McDermott. “A great throw and what appeared to be a great catch.”

After Benjamin’s TD was ruled incomplete after replay, only two seconds remained in the half. Kicker, Stephen Hauschka, ended up nailing a 23-yard field goal. Though, players on Buffalo’s offense weren’t happy to have six points taken away.

“It’s just crazy, man. You put so much into it and you get robbed like that,” running back LeSean McCoy said. “Come on, that’s a touchdown.”

If upheld, it would’ve marked Benjamin’s second TD since joining the Bills. The receiver let his teammates do the talking, as he handled the situation as good as possible.

“The referee made the call and you have to live with that,” said Benjamin. “We just had to move on and come out in the second half and try to put up some points on the board. You can only control what you can control. You have to keep playing and move on from there.” 

According to ESPN NFL Matchup, Buffalo is sixth in the league with the most pass attempts 20-plus yards downfield.

Quarterback, Tyrod Taylor, was flinging the football around against the Patriots in Week 16. Some of his big gains included: 46, 39, 35, and 33-yard pass plays.

“I thought we had some good drives the first three quarters of the game,” said head coach Sean McDermott. “Particularly right before tTaylor is convinced by the potential of Dwight McNeil.The winger is being tipped for senior England honours.”I’ve said numerous times, I’m his biggest fan,” Taylor told the Lancashire Evening Telegraph“I love playing with him, I know when I give hihe half.”

One of the players responsible for reeling in the big receptions was wide receiver Deonte Thompson. His most notable was a 33-yard play on third-and-two with 33 seconds left in the first half. His longest reception of the day went for 46 yards. Thompson finished the game with four receptions for 91 yards.

Taylor did a good job of hitting his targets, but was unable to find the end zone. His final stat line was 21-for-38 passing, 281 yards, zero touchdowns, and zero interceptions.

Thompson was Buffalo’s leading receiver, but LeSean McCoy and Kelvin Benjamin were right behind him. McCoy had five receptions for 76 yards and his longest gain was for 39 yards. On that play, he just about shook every Patriots defender out of their shoes.

Right behind McCoy was Benjamin, who performed on a high level despite his knee troubles. He finished the game with five receptions for 70 yards.

“I’m just executing the plays that are called,” said Taylor. “K.B. [Benjamin] did a great job of winning his matchups.”

Taylor and company have plenty of positives to take away from Sunday’s passing attack. They’ll look to regroup in Week 17 against the Dolphins, where Taylor has thrown nine touchdowns and zero interceptions since joining the Bills.

former Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is under consideration.Aulas is casting a wide net as he seeks to replace Bruno Genesio, who will leave when his contract expires in June.He said, “Juninho, (Laurent) Blanc, Wenger … Have I made my choice? No. I ha on Leeds United midfielder Kalvin Phillips.The Cherries have already plucked Lloyd Kelly from Championship club Bristol City this week.Football Insider says the south coast club will continue with their ‘policy of signing rising British stars’ with

He only needed four points, but Hauschka has now recorded 100 points in seven consecutive seasons. He’s tied with Stephen Gostkowski for the longest active streak in the NFL.

He was three-for-four on field goals, hitting from 23, 30, and 41 yards. Hauschka’s miss came from 50 yards out, where he’s been dominant all year. It was a tough spot for Buffalo, as it was fourth-and-one on New England’s 32-yard line. Considering Hauschka’s been money all season, head coach Sean McDermott elected to kick.

“I understand both sides. Of course the aggressive side says go for it, but at the same time you want to score points,” said quarterback Tyrod Taylor. “Hauschka has been very good for us and he’s going to continue to be good for us on field goals. It just didn’t go our way.”

In Buffalo, Hauschka’s set an NFL record for the most consecutive 50-plus yard field goals made. He also set Bills history for the most 50-plus yard field goals made in a season. On Sunday, he added to that impressive list, as he’s now tallied 100 points in each season since 2011.

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Cardiff goalkeeper Neil Etheridge saves Kenedy penalty to deny 10-man Newcastle victory at the death

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eadline-day signings Victor Camarasa and Harry Arter were included to inject a much-needed boost into the midfield ranks after Cardiff failed to register a shot on goal in their opening defeat to Bournemouth.

There was to be no reunion for twins Josh and Jacob Murphy after Benitez chose to only swap Javier Manquillo for DeAndre Yedlin in the backline.

Kenedy unleashed the first shot on target of the game when he shimmied past Sean Morrison to test Neil Etheridge in the Cardiff goal, before the hosts went close to taking the lead.

Sol Bamba was left unmarked to head Joe Ralls’s corner towards goal, but Ayoze Perez was there to block it short of the line.

Kenedy, who became the first player for eight years not to complete a pass in the opening 45 minutes, was lucky not to see red when his kick-out at Camarasa was not spotted by Craig Pawson.

erez had another chance to break the deadlock before half-time after latching onto Jonjo Shelvey’s sweeping ball, but the Cardiff stopper closed down the space to keep it level.

Vincent Tan was almost sent jumping out of his seat after the restart when Zohore crossed for Camarasa, but Shelvey nipped in to send it behind.

Newcastle were left scrapping for a point when Hayden, who had come on as a stand-in right back for Javier Manquillo, went flying into the back of Murphy after 66 minutes. He was shown a straight red card to leave Newcastle with 10 men for the remainder of the match.

But they should have stolen it after Morrison raised his arm to block Yoshinori Muto’s cross and concede a penalty deep into stoppage time.

ut Kenedy’s nightmare afternoon ended with a twist of justice as he saw his weak penalty comfortably saved by Cardiff hero Etheridge. The search for Cardiff and Newcastle thinks Arsenal have a good player in Pablo Mari.The Spaniard, on loan from Flamengo, made his debut for the Gunners in Monday’s FA Cup fifth-round win over Portsmouth.And Arteta was impressed with his performance when speaking after the game.”I thin’s first victories of the season continues, but both sides now have a foundation to build their Premier League campaigns.

“We knew it would be difficult,” said Newcastle manager Benitez. “We had some problems in the right full-back position and we had to move players around when Hayden was sent off so too many things were against us and in the end the penalty we missed to get the three points.

“We had some problems in the beginning but still we had two clear chances and we have to defend well and take chances but we didn’t do it.”

Etheridge 9; BennFormer Barcelona captain Andres Iniesta expects Ivan Rakitic to stay.The midfielder has opened the door to leaving.But Vissel Kobe star Iniesta told GOL: “I don’t know if he’s non-transferrable.”But I know he’s happy and wants to stay at Barcelona.”I hope that he can keep performing like before. I’d be happy for him.”ett 7, Morrison 6, Bamba 7, Manga 6; Camarasa 7 (Reid 76), Ralls 6, Arter 8; Josh Murphy 7 (Mendez-Laing 78), Hoilett 6 (Paterson 83), Zohore 6. Richards, Sme title race is over.Liverpool have won their last 14 matches leading to Pep Guardiola to jokingly congratulate them as “champions” after Manchester City’s shock defeat at Norwich.Klopp said: “Nothing is won already. We have seen teams make big stepsithies, Cunningham, Madine. Camarasa, Arter, Morrison.

Dubravka 6; Dummett 6, Clark 6, Lascelles 7, Manquillo 5 (Hayden 46); Ritchie 6 (Jacob Murphy 70), Diame 7, Shelvey 7, Kenedy 4; Perez 6 (Muto 65); Joselu 5. Ki, Rondon, Fernandez, Darlow. Ritchie, Manquillo. Hayden.

Craig Pawson (South Yorkshire).

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Pep Guardiola to explain yellow ribbon stance in letter to the FA

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In 2016, Fifa had ruled that poppies on shirts contravened its rules on political symbols but the FA defied the regulation with England’s players wearing poppies for an international against Scotland close to Remembrance Day in November that year and later secured a new ruling from Fifa to permit poppies.

Guardiola could also consider arguing that his was unwitting. The ribbon had been concealed under a bomber jacket he was wearing during the first half at the DW Stadium last Monday but Guardiola ended up unzipping the jacket in the second half, leaving the symbol clearly visible. Guardiola had clashed with Wigan manager Paul Cook at the end of the first half after City defender Fabian Delph’s red card.   

Guardiola elected to wear the ribbon on his jumper during City’s Carabao Cup final win over Arsenal on Sunday although it was mostly concealed during the game by a coat and scarf. The Catalan is free to wear the ribbon before and after matches and during pressWolves striker Rafa Mir is attracting fresh Spanish interest.El Periodico de Aragón says Wolves striker Mir is wanted by Real Zaragoza.Mir spent last season on loan at Las Palmas.He’s due to go back to Wolves – and is also being linked with Hull City.Wolves boss Nuno is expected to take a close look at Mir in preseason before making a final decision. conferences.

Some City fans wore ribbons in support of Guardiola on Sundanited .Although City have no chance of catching runaway leaders Liverpool , their top-four status is assured, with Guardiola’s side holding a 15-point lead over fifth-placed United.”When we believe it’s more important for them, we’re going to lose,” y and the manager thanked them for that. “The feeling to belong to something, I am really grateful for that initiative,” he said.

“They don’t have to do it. It is another country, yet they did that. That makes me really happy because that makes people understand the situation, what is going on, people in prison in Spain so 100 per cent grateful to them.”

City face Arsenal in the Premier League tomorrow with Guardiola insisting the league is the priority over the Champions League. City are 13 points clear of Manchester United with 11 fixtures to play.

“We are fighting for the most important title of the season by far, the Premier League, more than Champions League, more important than the FA Cup, Carabao Cup. That is enough encouragement to be focused,” he said.

“The next six fixtures are terrible in terms of quality of the opponents, and we have four games away and we still have to win six games. When you think about Arsenal, you think about Chelsea, Tottenham and Arsenal and our away games, Stoke City playing for relegation, going to Goodison Park is always a tough game. We have a lot of tough games still to play and have to remain focused.

“The league is always the most difficult, a game every three days. It shows how good you are over 11 months. All the titles I have won, La Liga, Bundesliga, the league is the most difficult. In the Carabao Cup we won two penalty rounds, Bravo saved them or you could be out. That is a toss of a coin, sometimes good, sometimes bad. The league is conso Everton did not happen over the summer.Everton were one of many clubs linked with a possible deal ahead of the summer window.He told HLN: “There was interest and there have been conversations, but it never came to a point where I had to decide: Do istency, the players know that. They know exactly how important the league is for this club, for our futures. Of course we have to be focused, we know how tough it will be until the end of the season.”

Meanwhile, it was revealed today that Guardiola gave a short speech as part of a champagne toast at Manchester City’s training ground on Wednesday afternoon in which he thanked staff for the part they played in helping to win the first trophy of his managerial reign at the club.

Guardiola addressed scores of staff in City’s canteen at their CFA headquarters in the wake of Sunday’s Carabao Cup triumph over Arsenal by telling them, “Thank you to everyone for helping us win”.

The City manager concluded his speech by telling the assembled employees that the team would do everything to ensure they now delivered “the most important title”, the Premier League. City currently lead Manchester United by 13 points with 11 games remaining.

Guardiola’s address was followed by a speech from Omar Berrada, City’s chief operating officer, and a champagne toast. The League Cup was also brought into the canteen for staff to see and have their picture taken with.

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Rafa Benitez dismisses criticism of Newcastle tactics – ‘I will not waste time on that’

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“The difference with the other leagues, you go to Germany or Spain, is that here you have five or six teams that can compete financially. They have the resources to compete. This is totllian has rejected Chelsea’s new attempt to secure him to a fresh terms.UOL says Willian, 31, has been offered a two-year deal by Frank Lampard after taking over from Eden Hazard as Chelsea’s main playmaker.But it’s reckoned Willian wants a three-yeaally different to other leagues.

"Leicester won the league, and nobody was expeJurgen Klopp has declared Divock Origi as a “Liverpool legend” ahead of their clash with his former club Genk on Tuesday.The Belgian scored the decisive goal in last season’s Champions League epic semi-final win over Barcelona, following it up with acting in 100 years that that could happen. Why? Because the other teams were in transition and made some mistakes.

"At this moment, it’s very difficult for them [City] to lose the title. In the future? You never know. With the money that everyone can spend, anything can happen. The teams with the most money win the league.”

Asked about Neville’s own managerial career – he lasted just four months at Valencia before he was s7 shots on goal in the first half without a goal in Saturday’s 2-0 win over Brighton.”We needed it,” the Brazilian told the club’s website. “We have been working hard every day, every game and this time we finally got the result, got the three pointsacked – Benitez’s response can best be described as barbed diplomacy.

“I don’t want to go down this route,” he said. “Valencia is Valencia. I won two titles with Valencia and the Uefa Cup. They are [sic] at the top of the table. Why? Because Valencia is a massive club and a massive city, but I don’t want to go this way…

“I will not waste too much time on that [criticism from pundits]. I had the same in Spain and Italy. They have to say something because they need the audience, and then you have to understand they are doing a job that is totally different. They don’t take any responsibility and they can make mistakes and the day after, it doesn’t matter.

“You are a manager, you have a group of players, you have fans, the city, responsibility and then you make the decisions you have to make to win games and that’s it.”

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Alvaro Morata will join up with Chelsea in Singapore and could make unofficial debut next week

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Morata revealed he took advice from one of his new Chelsea team-mates who will be in Singapore to greet him. “I spoke with (Cesar) Azpilicueta and he told me everything is OK, and he found it easy,” said Morata.

“The Premier League is one of the best in the world, so I’m happy to be here.” Morata had looked set to join Manchester United before Jose Mourinho hijacked Chelsea’s interest in Romelu Lukaku, whic talk of Lampard blocking a new contract offer being made to Willian.But the manager says he’s yet to speak with his former teammate. He told chelseafc.com: “It does feel different, but in the short period I have been in charge it changes very quicklh resulted in the Blues moving for the 24-year-old.

Questioned on how close he came to moving to Old Trafford, Morata added: “I don’t know, the most important thing is I’m here playing for Chelsea. Finally I’m here.”

Morata’s move brings an end to a three-year wait to work with Conte, who signed him for Juventus in 2014 and failed in a bid to take him to Chelsea last summer.

Conte quit Juventus before the pair could work together, but the Spaniard has remained grateful for the faith Chelsea’s head coach has shown in him.

“I’m going to the team managed by the coach who has placed the most faith in me and that’s great for me,” said Morata. “I’m very happy.”

Speaking in April, Morata revealed the impact Conte had made on him by saying: “Conte is the manager who most ‘bet’ on me, without even ever having had me in his team.

“I’m very conscious of that. He bet on me for Juventus but left before I arrived, then he wanted me at Chelsea come what may. He knows me better than I could imagine, I’m sure, and that’s important. It motivates you to work hard, train well.

“I feel indebted to him because he’s the coach that most trusted in me, most wanted me,diola is delighted with the form of Rodri in preseason.Guardiola paid tribute to another impressive display from Rodri as City rounded off a successful Asia Tour with a fine 3-1 win over Yokohama F Marinos. “Yeah. Kevin (De Bruyne) made another great who made me feel I could perform at the highest level. And yet I’ve never had the fortune to actually work with him. I’m sure sooner or later I will.”

On the fact he almost joined Chelsea last summer, Morata added: “Various Premier League coaches called to tell me to play for them. I said yeah, I’d like to, that if I had to leave I would almost certainly go to London, but that I didn’t know what Madrid would do. I knew they’d bring me back, but I didn’t know if it was to keep me or sell me.

“I spoke directly to Mauricio Pochettino and Antonio Conte, although the norm is clubs call my dad or agent. Madrid said they didn’t want to sell. I remember talking to my dad then and him saying ‘This guy (Conte) is going to win the League there (in England).”

Real paid tribute to Morata ahead of his move to Chelsea by releasing a statement on their website that read: “The club wishes to express its thanks for the dedication, professionalism and exemplary conduct displayed by the player over the years, spanning his time in our academy right through to his spell as a member of the first-team squad.”

Another of Chelsea’s summer signings, central defender Antonio Rudiger, is also expected to join up with Conte’s squad in Singapore after complan Dijk says they’re unharmed from last season’s Premier League title heartbreak.Van Dijk believes that ­Liverpool’s Champions League ­success healed the scars of losing the Premier League title today’s opponents Manchester City on the final day.Heeting his post-Confederations Cup break.

Alvaro Morata is valued at £6.5m in Telegraph Fantasy Football but is he good enough to make your team? –

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Spring returns to Spiller's step in big play performance

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He’s been hampered for weeks, slowed by a high-ankle sprain, but Sunday, Bills teammates were glad to have the C.J. Spiller they’re used to seeing.

“I was just joking with him and just saying it’s good to have old C.J. back,” Jeff Tuel said.

For three games immediately after sustaining his high-ankle sprain in Week 4, Spiller struggled to cut and explode off his injured left ankle. Week seven at Miami he struggled managing just 11 yards on six attempts. Coach Marrone chose to hold him out of their Week eight game at New Orleans, a day when Buffalo ran for only 88 yards on 68 plays.

A week off apparently did wonders as Spiller delivered three of the four longest plays in the game Sunday. Sunday against the Chiefs also marked the first time since Week two that Spiller ran for over 100 yards.

C.J. Spiller:

Spiller’s power and explosion were evident, and Buffalo’ Oxlade-Chamberlain is getting stronger.Oxlade-Chahamberlain was withdrawn at half-time during the Super Cup and Klopp indicates the England international is still working his way up to top speed. “It was positive for Oxlade-Chamberlain,” Klopp sais ground game was the beneficiary hitting a season high Sunday with 241 yards. Spiller gained 9.7 yards per carry on 12 runs for 116 yards and added two receptions for 39 yards. He even outran Kansas City’s Jamaal Charles, who had 90 yards off 17 carries. Charles makes up nearly 40 percent of the Chief’s offense.

“He’s a tremendous player for us,” Fred Jackson said. “So any time you get a guy like that back, you want to take advantage of his skill set. He was able to make some big plays for us.”

Starting on the Bills very first scoring drive, Spiller’s presence hit the field in a pair of runs which gained one of three first downs, allowing Tuel breathing room to toss a deep touchdown to Marquise Goodwin.

Two possessions later, Spiller touched the ball four times on a five-minute-drive, most notably finding a hole opened by a trio of thundering blocks in the middle. Spiller slashed through the void and ran for 29 yards before being forced out of bounds. The drive was capped by a field goal.

“Offensive line and tight ends and wide receivers did a great job blocking,” Spiller said. “Just trying to make a couple plays, a couple guys miss, just try to give us a spark.”

West Ham United can achieve something special with the current team.The fullback has extended his deal with the Irons until 2023, which could take the No3 up to nine years in Claret and Blue. He said, “Going back to the last year we had at the Bole

Unfortunately six plays later with the Bills on the doorstep of Kansas City’s end zone, Tuel threw an interception, which Kansas City returned 100 yards for a touchdown.

“We went right down the field, C.J. (Spiller) did a nice job, made a great run and we get down there and we don’t punch it in on goal line,” head coach Doug Marrone said. “We get a penalty on the pass play first and then we don’t punch it in with a goal line formation.”

“That’s a huge momentum swing, for anybody,” Jackson said. “It was something we had to get over fairly quickly. That’s something you don’t want to deal with, being down there and not only getting no points, but also giving them seven points. It’s something we just cannot do in that situation.”

Buffalo would tie the score a short time later and again Spiller was the catalyst. He singlehandedly ran the offense into field goal range off a flare pass from Tuel, which he took up the left sideline for 27 yards. Jackson earned the drive another first down, but the offense stalled at Kansas City 12-yard-line. Buffalo again took a field goal, but they proved to be Buffalo’s final points in a 10-point loss.

While the Bills feature back was glad he could contribute in the fashion that teammates and fans have come to expect, rney jokes that he was at a local park when he got a call about his move being complete.The Scottish left back made a deadline day move to the Premier League giants from Celtic.When asked about how he spent the past 24 hours before the finalising of being saddled with the loss made it hard for Spiller to take pride in his efforts.

“Like I said all week, I feel good,” Spiller said. “I feel like the spring is coming back. It’s still not back but it’s definitely very close. (Sunday) was very encouraging for me. It was a great day to run the ball as well as we did against a good team. At the end of the day, we still lost and that’s all that matters.”

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Exclusive: The inside story of how Everton are planning to crack the top four

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Much of it comes from manager Ronald Koeman, an A-list coach who since the New Year has been achieving (Everton would be the top of the Premier League if only results in 2017 counted).

Inevitably, it also comes from confidence instilled since .

But mostly it comes from a determination to ensure the phrase ‘knocking on the door of the top six’ is made redundant as the foundations that have kept Everton close to the European elite are rewarded.

In nine of the last 14 years, Everton finished in the top seven. Three times they were 5th. Once they took a coveted top four place only to (controversially) lose a Champions League qualifier.

Building on or maintaining the momentum of encouraging seasons has been challenging, but for chief executive Robert Elstone the years defying the economic trends in the Premier League are the ideal base now the financial picture is healthier.

“Leicester City aside, more often than not, you do get what you pay for,” says Elstone.

“Having said that, our average finishing position over the past ten years sits well above our average wage bill and net transfer spend, though, evidently, not well enough to break into the Champions League elite.

“We said for many years that the clubs above us had either big, modern stadia they filled every week, a billionaire owner or a global fan base built on the back of lengthy periods of on-field success. Add in the recurring, substantial benefit of European football, and the income that generates, and the gap in spending power – wages and transfer fees – is substantial. Everton’s wage bill is significantly below the six clubs sitting above the club in the League table. In the latest Deloitte Report, Everton’s total wages are 70% of Spurs’, less than half of Liverpool’s and around one-third of Chelsea’s. 

“To underscore the optimism in the club, the new investor has arrived and is demonstrating his ambition.

“Stadium plans have gathered pace and this is significant in that the other clubs in the Premier League either have a new stadium, are building one or arguably don’t need to move from their existing stadium. Delivering the stadium would be an important step towards the top four.

“Also, perhaps an ingredient less tangible, there’s a widening belief that it’s not just about money. As the club has proven many times in the past, it is possible to outperform budget.

“The signs are very positive. Young players are pushing for places, results are good and confidence is running high – and the manager is at the heart of that. His steely determination, his burning ambition and his calm and understated approach are very Everton. And, as he would say himself, it is ultimately about actions, not words.

“We can only convince by results and we relish that challenge.

“When Man City or Chelsea made the step up, they were less constrained by Financial Fair Play rules than we are today. This, along with the overall player wage and transfer inflation, means that the gap is even harder to bridge now, hence we have to be smarter going about it, from our academy operations to player recruitment and building the right infrastructure at the club.”

Bridging the gap is not just about Premier League points, but also revenue streams. European qualification – at the very least Everton should be in the Europa League next season – will open further opportunities.

“By pretty much all measures – total income (dominated for most clubs by broadcast fees), commercial income and wage spend, there’s a relatively flat curve from the 20th placed club to the teams playing in Europe,” says Elstone.

“The curve then kicks up dramatically, reflecting European football, billionaire owner or big stadium full every week. Commercial revenues are polarising all the time and the big brands and the big cheques want the profile of Europe and the platform of a new stadium. Of course, for some, commercial revenues alsoico.The striker scored twice in Sunday’s 3-1 win over Everton, with Rico’s left-foot providing assists for both goals.Asked about the £10.7million signing, Wilson told the Daily Echo: “Full-backs and wingers like to get assists and if you get the op come from friendly sources. Everton’s challenge is to move from the point at which the curve kinks, to a place firmly on the upwards slope. It can only do this by securing success on the pitch and success in delivering the new stadium. It’s a substantial challenge. 

“Commercially, life outside the Champions League is tough. Likewise finding the hundreds of millions of pounds to build a new stadium is tough.

“We have taken some steps forward commercially but we are not there yet and we will never rest on our laurels.

“We’re highly likely to have to cap season tickets next season which means for the second season in a row every seat at every game will be full. That’s the reward for an industry-leading community-led marketing strategy winning hearts and milo Ancelotti has found himself at the forefront of an FA misconduct charge.The veteran boss was incensed when his team was denied a winning goal against Manchester United at Goodison Park on Sunday.He thought his side had won the game 2-1, but the gonds all over the city. It also means one in four of the fans at Goodison every week are under 22 years of age, significantly better than the Premier League average.

“The future is in good shape. It’s also the reward for a clear, long-standing strategy of fan and community engagement based on traditional football values, values encapsulated by a title with which we’ve become synonymous, The People’s Club.

“Expectations are high, demands are tough and only the best will do and that’s exactly how it should be."

Another advisable requirement to fulfilling European ambitions is ensuring top players move to rather than from the blue half of the city.

When , where once there might have been resignation and even some private understanding, this time there was defiance and exasperation.

Koeman’s appointment is in itself a demonstration of the changing natta admits Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang must commit to the club long-term if he wants to keep the captaincy.Arteta is keeping faith in the Gabon striker, who has been talks over a new deal with Arsenal but negotiations have broken down.He has just 18 monure of the club, and his response to the suggestion Everton’s ambitions do not match some of their players was emphatic.

“In every aspect we are striving to improve, grow stronger and be as good as we can possibly be and we are showing that ambition,” he said.

“We are trying to make the team as strong as possible and the strong run of results in 2017 show this as well. The new stadium will be a big statement, but no less significant is the work we’ve doing at USM Finch Farm, improvements that will cement our training ground as one of the top, professional facilities in football. “Always you have to get better, you cannot stand still.

“We want to play an attractive game, solid and strong yes, but also good football, exciting football that the fans want to watch and will stir their passion. As I said before, if this club was not ambitious, I would not be the manager of Everton. It takes time and there are steps to take and the first will be qualifying for Europe this season. Next season we will look to take the next step.”

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Bills show lots of thanks and giving

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Buffalo Bills running back C.J. Spiller remembers his mom’s home cooking and her sweet potato pie for his Thanksgiving. This and many other Thanksgiving memories were stirred up at the Northwest Buffalo Community Center (NWBCC) on November 23, 2010 as the Buffalo Bills Toyota Rookie Club served their 10th Annual Rookie Club Thanksgiving dinner for over 300 children and their families.

Bills players in attendance included C.J. Spiller, Torell Troup, Ed Wang, Arthur Moats, Alex Carrington, Antonio Coleman, David Nelson, Levi Brown, Marcus Easley, Dominique Harris, Cordero Howard, Donald Jones, Danny Batten, Montez Billings, Naaman Roosevelt and John Russell.

The support of the Bills was noticed and appreciated by the players.

“I still can’t get over how supportive the community of Buffalo is to the Bills,” said Troup. “Despite records or what happens on the field, this community will never turn their back on us. Because they are so supportive of us I can’t help but give back to the community as well. This community has left an imprint in all of us and I will always remember nights like tonight.”

The gym at the NWBCC was jam packed like never before but there was plenty of food for everyone. Ms. Juanita Anderson, who is largely responsible for all of the delicious food and cooking at the event, was presented with a personalized #10 Bills jersey by the Bills players.

“Ms. Anderson definitely knows how to cook and the fact she cooked for over 300 people is amazing,” said Moats. “We passed out Thanksgiving dinners to those who may not have the opportunity to have another meal on Thursday. It was really special for us because we got to sit with them and eat with everyone who came out tonight.”

After the dinner, the Bills rookies introduced themselves and said what they were most thankful for this year.

Wide receiver Donald Jones, who was excited to score his first career touchdown last weekend, is also very excited to spend his first Thanksgiving with his newborn son. All of the players were looking forward to spending some time with their family and eating a good home cooked meal from their mothers.

The players, children and their famig pitch after their 1-1 draw with Valencia.Diego Costa and Alvaro Morata have been misfiring this season and although the former opened the scoring on Saturday with a penalty against Valencia, his first home goal of the season, they’re not deliveringli defender Matthijs de Ligt has hit out at Manchester United.The former Ajax captain moved to Juve last week and revealed he was aware of the story that United chose not to move for him as a junior over predictions he would put on weight later in his es all had a fun time, but it was the food and fond memories that everyone was talking about.

“The Bills rookies came along to show their appreciation and celebrate thanks and show how thankful they are for everything,” said Diamond Solomon, 17, and NWBCC member. “Ms. Anderson did some great cooking and definitely got people fed tonight and my favorite part was the eating part – everything was delicious!”

“For us to come and spend time and share a piece of our Thanksgiving with them is a very humbling experience and a very joyful experience,” said David Nelson. “It’s something I will remember forever.”

The Bills were active in a host of other Thanksgiving related events this past week.  Some of those events included:

Players and coaches donated money for Thanksgiving meals from Tops Friendly Markets on November 22, 2010 for the Valley Community Center in Buffalo.  75 large meals were donated by John Gamble, Eric Ciano, George Cortez, Bob Sanders, George Edwards, Reggie Torbor, Akin Ayodele and Andra Davis.  Each meal included a 25 – 30 pound turkey, 12 fresh bakery rolls, 10 pounds of potatoes, three cans of green beans, three cans of corn, two cans of homestyle gravy, two cans of cranberry sauce, two boxes of stuffing, a gallon of apple cider, a gallon of fruit punch, one apple pie, and one pumpkin pie!With the help of the United Way of Buffalo & Erie County, the Food Bank of Weante admits winning trophies with his teammates is what he values most as a footballer.While the French midfielder has received several individual accolades including the Footballer of the Year award in 2016/17, it is the team prizes he treasures mosstern New York and the Northwest Buffalo Community Center, safety George Wilson donated 100 “boxes of love” (turkey dinners) to select families on November 21, 2010 as part of his SAFETY Foundation and Home for the Holidays program.Cornerback Drayton Florence donated 110 turkey dinners to students and their families in the local “Take Stock in Children” program in Ocala, Florida on November 22, 2010.Bills alumni Booker Edgerson, Ed Rutkowski and Lou Piccone served up turkey dinners at the Buffalo City Mission on November 16, 2010 for the annual Thanksgiving Community Meal.Bills alumni Booker Edgerson, Charley Ferguson, Bob Dugan, Ed Rutkowski, Ernie Warlick, Hilton Crawford, Will Fowler and others were on hand to distribute Thanksgiving packages with all the trimmings to over 60 needy families at the Urban Christian Ministries (UCM) Center in Buffalo on November 23, 2010.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Dimitri Payet: I’m staying at West Ham

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But the former Marseille player, who helped the Hammers to a seventh-placed finish in the Premier Leag a season-long loan.”Real Madrid strongly recommended I should come to the Premier League to improve my football,” said Vallejo, whose side face Busea meet City on Saturday evening.Looking back on how pivotal those 12 months at City under Manuel Pellegrini were in where he is now, Lampard said: “The year in Manchester, in terms of wher Kevin de Bruyne.De Bruyne has complained about the Euro2020 draw, claiming “90 per cent” of the groups were already settled before yesterday’s lottery.Platini said, “Among other things, I have chosen the playing cities, but I have nothing to do wiat I’m doing here now, was perfect for me because it opened myrnley today.”I think it was the right decision. I feel really wanted here. Nuno called me saying he neeue last season, has stressed his commitment to Slaven Bilic’s team.

"I’ve heard about all the interest and I’m flattered. But I love West Ham," Payet told The Sun.

"We had a fantastic season and I can’t wait to play in the Olympic Stadium.

"I’m 100 per cent staying at West Ham, I love the club. I can tell the Hammers fans that."

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Six reasons why Sam Allardyce is the right man for England

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For all of England’s attacking talents, the defensive aspects of the game will take precedence. England would become harder to beat under Allardyce, an Club America defender Edson Alvarez.It emerged over the weekend that America had put the brakes on a move to Ajax for Alvarez as West Ham and Wolves made contact.And Record is now reporting that Palace have made an approach about a price for the Mexd as the old adage goes, if you don’t concede you will not lose.

Although England dominated possession for large spells of their matches, organisational issues accounted for 50 per cent of the goals that Roy Hodgson’s side conceded. This would not occur under Allardyce’s watch. Every player would have their defensive roles drilled into them and they would all know what is expected – to a tee.

Under Allardyce, England would have not lost concentration against Russia and defended the second phase of the set piece properly and that the diminutive .

Additionally, unlike Hodgson’s side, an weapon and would have ceased to play into it. But even if the odd throw was conceded, an Allardyce side would be aware of their ambition to win the flick on at the back post and the runner spinning off to win the second ball. Kyle Walker would have been aware of this more than most, and wouldn’t have lost Ragnar Siggoroson in the inexplicable manner he did. 

Not afraid to stick to what he knows

Hardened by managerial  tenures at Blackpool, Notts County and Bolton Wanderers, Allardyce was an unflappable figure when it came to his roles at West Ham and Newcastle. While the former craved for football to be played ‘The West Ham way’, Allardyce stuck to his guns and played football in the way that had served him so well over the years. It wasn’t pretty by any means, but it was effective, and it got the East London club promoted before subsequently maintaining their status as a mid-table Premier League side – laying the foundations for Slaven Bilic to take them forward furthermore. 

The same would be apparent if he was manager of England. The masses would be crying by football that they would define as attractive, but in this results driven business, and the possibility that the new manager will be paid on a performance basis, fans should expect ruthless, direct and effective football that quite simply gets the job done.

Can manage flair players

JayJay Okocha. Youri Djorkaeff. Ravel Morrison (briefly). Ricardo Vaz Te. 

Playmakers flourished under the supposed rigidity of a Sam Allardyce regime. Not only were they part of the well-oiled Allardyce machine, but they were all given the freedom to shine like the lights they are.

Expect the same with the current England squad under Allarir best effort in the coming game against Brighton.The Saints are determined to get the first points of the season in the Premier League.They have suffered two defeats in the opening two games of the season, which is not a promising start for a team dyce’s guidance, with players such as Ross Barkley,  Dele Alli, Adam Lallana and Raheem Sterling thriving in the era of a new England.

Allardyce knows his best team

A large criticism of Roy Hodgson was that he didn’t know his best team. Constant changes disrupted England’s momentum at Euro 2016 and played a major role in their premature elimination.

Sam Allardyce would provide this consistency, and at this time of uncertainty, it’s exactly what England need.

Getting towards the latter stages of the season, Allardyce rarely made changes to his Sunderland team. Out of the the last eight games of the season, Allardyce named the same starting XI seven times – with the final game of the season being an anomaly as they had secured Premier League survival by this point.

It’s therefore no surprise that Sunderland formed their best run during this period, only losing once in that period, and picking up 12 points – winning against Chelsea and drawing against Arsenal in this period. 

Getting the best out of players at his disposal

Allardyce hasn’t managed football’s most industrious clubs, but he has a track record of getting the best out of his players and over achieving as a result.

At Bolton Wanderers, he galvanised the likes of Ricardo Gardener and Per Frandsen to play a key role in their promotion to the Premier League in 2001 and even helped them establish themselves as players capable of playing in the top flight. Kevin Nolan grew into a lynchpin. Michael Ricketts even won an England cap under Big Sam’s tutelage. His biggest achievement was guiding Bolton to last 16 of the Uefa Cup after guiding the club to seventh the season before.

Similarly, he oversaw the resurgence of Carlton Cole at West Ham while helping the likes of Jack Collison and Mark Noble to progress and play a key role in their promotion back to the Premier League.

In a similar way to knowing his best XI, Allardyce would be able to motivate and inspire the England team should he be chosen to be the next manager. As proven in the past, he will under-promise and then over-perform, and take England to further heights than achieved under Roy Hodgson. 

Innovative

At Bolton, Allardyce became one of the first managers in the Premier League to embrace the new technology era. After ProZone was rolled out in 1995, Allardyce was one of the first managers to use it, and it became a prominent part of his traindre Silva.After a difficult loan spell at Sevilla last season, Silva has been put up for sale by the Rossonero.While reluctant to leave for Wolves, the striker is prepared to listen to what they have to say.Gazzetta dello Sport says Wolves are leanining methods during Bolton’s early days  in the Premier League.

This methodical nature and the obsession with statistics signalled a new era in football, and while many ridiculed this new concept, Allardyce continued to thrive with the new information at his disposal.

It’s this kind of innovation and freshness that the England side need. Too often, they have been stuck in an inertia with the aim of being traditional. England need people with new thinking, new ideas and new ambitions, and they should be allowed to do it their way. With all of these things in mind, Allardyce would be the idea candidate for the job.

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Night practice 2 and 4 ticket availability

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The Buffalo Bills announced that tickets will be made available for the July 30th and August 6th night practices during the Verizon Wireless Training Camp at St. John Fisher College in Rochester beginning Friday, July 24th at 9:00 a.m. Tickets for all night practices are complimentary.

**Night Practice Date****Time****Availability Date****Price**Thursday, July 307:00-9:05 p.m.Friday, July 24ComplimentaryThursday, August 67:00-9:05 p.m.Friday, July 24Complimentary

Each ticket will be scanned at the entrance to the camp and no duplicate tickets will be allowed entry. Ticket orders for the night practices are limited to six (6) per person per practice. Tickets are available for the July 30th night practice by visiting any of the following Tops Friendly Markets locations:

**Address****City****Hours**710 Lake AvenueRochester, NYOpen 6 a.m. – midnight2345 Buffalo RoadRochester, NYOpen 24 hours6720 Pittsford/Palmyra RoadRochester, NYOpen 24 hours3201 Southwestern BoulevardOrchard Park, NYOpen 24 hours2101 Elmwood AvenueBuffalo, NYOpen 24 hours2351 Maple & TransitBuffalo, NYOpen 24 hours

The July 30th night practice will also feature a special Bills 50th Season celebration immediately after practice. The Bills players will model and unveil their new throwback jerseys, a special 50th Season video will be shown, Bills players will be introduced and speak to fans from a field stage, Rochester’s Empire Statesman Drum and Bugle Corps will play and a grand fireworks display will take place.

Tickets are available for the August 6th night practice by visiting either Bills Store locations:

Orchard Park, NY Open Mon.-Fri. 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.One Bills Drive Saturday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Victor, NY Open Mon.-Sat. 10 a.m. – 9:30 p.m.7979 Pittsford-Victor Road Sunday 11 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

A limited number of July 25 and 26 Opening Weekend training camp practice tickets remain available. Fans may visit the Rochester Verizon Wireless Store locations for the Opening Weekend tickets. A list of the Verizon Wireless Store locations is available on Buffalobills.com in the Training Camp section.

The July 28 and Au seeking tdespite interest from Arsenal.Arsenal are believed to be keen on the 13-times capped defender, who was viewed as a potential upgrade on both Nacho Monreal and Sead Kolasinac by Unai Emery. Speaking to InterDipendenza.net, Ricardo Schlieper said: “No shed fringe players before the summer market shuts.The news however may spell the end for unpopular centre-back Shkodran Mustafi, whose Emirates future remains uncertain amid speculation over a move to Roma. Kroenke told BBC Sport: “I wgust 4 training camp night practice tickets are sold out.

As a long standing partner of the Bills, M&T Bank will staff a booth and supply an ATM for fans attending training camp. Fans may obtain information on the many products and services offered by M&T, the official bank of the Bills. Fans who open a new checking account will receive a free Bills white panel football while supplies last. Bills giveaways and raffle sign-ups will also be available for anyone who visits the booth.

Ticket availability for the final three night practices on Tuesday, August 11, Thursday, August 13 and Monday, August 17 will be announced each Tuesday beginning July 28 and ending on August 4. Tickets will be made available on each Friday following the Tuesday announcement through various Bills partners including Ticketmaster, Tops Markets, Delaware North Companies (Bills Team Stores), Verizon Wireless and Anheuser-Busch.

In addition, all of the daytime practices that are open to the public do not require tickets. For a complete listing ofau Lopez is aware of interest from Barcelona.The former Tottenham keeper is seen at Barca as a replacement for the wantaway Jasper Cillessen.Lopez told Sport: “I’m happy at Betis. I signed for five years and I have four left. I improved a lot and I f the training camp practice schedule and more information please visit the Buffalo Bills Verizon Wireless Training Camp page at .

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Middlesbrough 1 Brighton 1: Boro return to Premier League as draw secures promotion

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In Steve Gibson, Middlesbrough have a chairman who is one of the great philanthropists of English football. An owner who  – like every supporter – always tends to let his heart rule his head.

They have a bright young manager in Aitor Karanka, a protégé of Jose Mourinho, who despite a mid-season meltdown, in which he threatened to quit after a row with senior players, has transformed a team that was worrying about relegation when he arrived in November 2013.

But it is what promotion means to this proud, but deprived region, that makes it special. Mocked in television documentaries about the unemployed, hammered by government cuts and cruelly ignored when the Redcar Steel plant closed last year, with the loss of thousands of precious jobs, this is a timely lift for Teesside.

Forget the boost to the local economy – which will be significant – this is about restoring pride and prestige for a town and area that has always been obsessed with football, even when gates fell below 20,000 during the harshest months of the recession.

“I have always had incredible support from the fans,” said Karanka. “They have always been one of the main motivations for me. They have always backed me, even when we lost in the play-off final at Wembley last year.

“People maybe laughed when I said Middlesbrough should be in the Premier League, but I always believed. Now we have done it, a year after losing in the play-offs, when people said it would be hard to go again,

“For the steelworkers, who have had so much hardship, hopefully their lives feel a little brighter after this.

“I’m so pleased for the owner, the players, but most of all the supporters. This area deserves a Premier League football club. There are 20 privileged people who manage in the Premier League and I’m going to be one of them.”

Boro just about deserved this, although they made harder work of it than they should. Karanka’s side dominated the first half and should have had more to show for it than just one goal, scored by Cristhian Stuani, after David Nugent had guided a brilliant free-kick from Gaston Ramirez back across goal.

Stuani had another volley, which had beaten goalkeeper David Stockdale, diverted over the bar by the knee of Connor Goldson.

There were a series of other openings, some gilt-edged, that were wasted with a poor final ball, while a chip from Ramirez landed on the roof of the net with Stockdale in no-man’s land.

, something Hughton will have stressed in his half-time teamtalk. Score first and Boro’s nerves would hopefully do the rest.

His players responded, cranking up the pressure, winning a series of free kicks in promising positions. Eventually they got one right, Anthony Knockaert picking out the run of Dale Stephens, who did brilliantly to send a looping header into the far corner.

Brighton began to believe, but they self-harmed. Moments after he had been warned by referee Mike Dean for shoving Ramirez, the Brighton goalscorer, Stephens, went in studs up on the Spaniard, who crashed to the ground with a deep gash in his shin.

Referee Mike Dean initiaace earned Arsenal the three points in a thrillingly chaotic contest at the Emirates on Sunday that, as expected, was defined by Arsenal’s skilful young attackers, Everton’s sharp counter-attacks, and two error-prone defences.Everton dominated the filly appeared set to boalkeeper Adrian is pushing to make their clash with Southampton.Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was angry when his club endured a third pitch invasion in three European finals, this time resulting in an ankle injury to the Spaniard, when a fan barrellok the Brighton player, but a glance at the extent of the wound, prompted him to show a straight red. Stephens looked bemused as he left the pitch, followed by Ramirez on a stretcher. Down to ten men, Brighton simply could not build up enough pressure to take advantage of their host’s nerves, despite eight-minutes of stoppage time.

“I’m extremely disappointed a red card was shown,” said Hughton, who will have to lift his players quickly ahead of their clash with Sheffield Wednesday on Friday. “I had a goothroughout the second half of the season.Toon’s home numbers returned to full strength for Saturday’s loss to Everton, which included the club’s new half season ticket holders.And Bruce hopes the attendance numbers continue ahead of Wednesday’s clashd view of it and we all know he was going to show a yellow card at first.

“We’ll appeal. That decision cost us the chance to really push for another goal. It is a distraught dressing room, they are devastated, but these are the highs and lows of football and we’ll lift them for Friday. It won’t be easy, but we’ll be ready. We’re still in good form.”

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LSU hires former Nebraska coach Bo Pelini as its new defensive coordinator

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A former face is returning to Baton Rouge. Former Nebraska coach Bo Pelini is set to become the new defensive coordinator at LSU, according to a release from LSU. Youngstown State also released a statement that Pelini had resigned his post as coach — a role served in for five years. The hir Samir Nasri has been flooded by offers from around the world.While he failed to win a new deal with the Irons, the six months he enjoyed at West Ham was enoted Spurs from the competition last night.”It’s a very difficult moment for us,” Lucas said. “But the only way that we have is to keep fighting, keep believing.”Now we have only the Premier League and we need to be in a better position.”Our objectiveugh to put him in the shop window.Foot Mercato says several Ligue 1 clubs have made contact, ing fills in a huge vacancy for coach Ed Orgeron’s staff after Dave Aranda left to take the head coaching job at after spending four years with the program.

Prior to his time in Youngstown, Pelini was the head coach at from 2008-14 and defensive coordinator from 2005-07.

“The opportunity to return to LSU is truly unique,” Pelini said. “Culturally, with my prior experience at LSU, I know it is a great fit for me. The chance to work with Coach (Ed) Orgeron, the ability to take charge of the Tigers defense. All of that in a place that both my family and I immensely enjoyed when we were there before is very exciting for us.  We are very honored and looking forward to this next chapter.”

Sports Illustrated reports that Pelini that will pay him around $2.3 million per season. Pelini’s hire is pending approval from the Board of Supervisors, .

Pelini’s defenses finished in the top 20 nationally in total defense in each of his three seasons with the Tigers, including in 2007 when they won the BCS National Championship over . That successful stint in Baton Rouge earned him the head coaching gig at Nebraska where he won nine or more games in each of his seven seasons. Despite that, he was let go following the 2014 season. 

He took over at Youngstown State and led the Penguins to a 12-4 record in his second season in 2016.h a shock move for unsettled Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos.Both Marca and El Chiringuito reports that Ramos is staring at a Real Madrid exit following a meeting with president Florentino Perez earlier this month.The experienced Spanish defender is They lost to James Madison 28-14 in the FCS National Championship Game. He has gone 33-28 in five seasons, including a 6-6 record in 2019.

“The past five years have been terrific,” Pelini said. “I can’t thank [Youngstown State] President Jim Tressel and [athletic director] Ron Strollo enough for the opportunity here and support along the way. For all of the people, honestly too many to name, who were part of my YSU experience, I also want to extend a heartfelt thank you.”

Pelini is 100-55 as a head coach in his stints at Nebraska and Youngstown State. 

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Booze, transfers among eight discussion points at the 2019 SEC spring meetings

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On a spit of white sand beach, the SEC will decide the current and future state of the league. In other words, it’s time for the annual spring meetings in Destin, Florida.

The league conducts these meetings at resort on the Florida Panhandle with a view of the Gulf of Mexico. Those meetings begin formally on Tuesday with an ocean breeze and a full agenda. Focus, boys and girls, paradise can wait until the end of business hours.

Here are eight things you should keep an eye on as the SEC spring meetings go down this week in Destin.

Hard liners gasped a little when the NCAA, two weeks ago, . The moving target that is amateurism will be a key discussion point in Destin. The basic argument is whether student-athletes — like their Olympic counterparts — can profit from their basic sense of self.

The Olympics decided 30 years ago that its athletes could still be considered amateurs despite allowing them to do commercials. Those ratings-grabbing figure skaters, gymnasts and skiers didn’t turn off a soul because they appeared in an airline commercial.

What does that look like in the college space? Think of Tua Tagovailoa doing a local car commercial or DeAndre Swift getting a little somethin’, somethin’ for his autograph. You’d better believe the SEC will begin significant discussions on what it all means. This is a league that lost its collective mind in 2015 when cost of attendance was implemented. Back then, the concern was, God forbid, Auburn players get $100 more per month than their Alabama counterparts — or vice versa.

will no doubt hang over the meetings. Bramblett and his wife were killed in a car accident over the weekend, leaving a school and a conference in mourning. Bramblett had been the football “Voice of the Tigers” since 2003. He leaves behind two wonderful children, Shelby and Joshua. There have been many great voices of SEC football. Their shared contribution is to those who have no other way to follow their teams except through those unique voices. We should never forget Bramblett’s famous call of the Pick Six.

The SEC West is apparently the place to be for administrators, too. Scott Woodward and Ross Bjork will be at their first SEC meetings since changing jobs within the West Division. Woodward, a New Orleans native, came “home” to LSU from Texas A&M. On Friday, Bjork left Ole Miss — where he had been for eight years — to take the opening at TAMU. For those of you scoring at home, that leaves the latest SEC West opening at Ole Miss.

If it’s all about money — and frequently it is all about money — the SEC has some work to do. The Big Ten earlier this month announced a 48 percent increase in revenue, making the Larter City to “achieve something fantastic”.The Foxes, who were surprise champions under Claudio Ranieri in 2015-16, are third with Brendan Rodgers in charge.”Leicester have a spine of the team that is experienced – in Jonny Evans, Jamie Vardy and Kaspge 14 the richest conference in history — by far. This means a lot to the SEC, if only from a pride standpoint. The two leagues have separated themselves from the rest of college sports in terms of money … and championships. The leagues have combined for 10 of the last 13 football national titles. (OK, the SEC has nine of those.)

It was 10 years ago that Nick Saban won his first national championship at Alabama. That started a run of five titles in a decade. Is 2019, will it be a continuation of the same, or was the Clemson game a sign of things to come?

Among coaches, the 7-month-old . It isn’t going away, but that won’t stop the league’s coaches from weighing in. A couple of years ago, anticipating more transfer freedom, Saban said, “Am I going to have to change the way I coach?” The answer is the same for all coaches: Yeah, maybe. At least check 106 SEC football players had put their name in the portal. That’s an average of more than 7.5 per school.

Schools long ago began serving alcohol at sporting events nationwide. The total now stands at approximately 55 FBS schools that serve alcohol at games. The SEC remains an outlier. It is the only major conference that has a policy against alcohol sales to the general public. Social mores have loosened. The NCAA now allows drinkage at its championship events. The SEC — in the heart of the Bible Belt — has been slow to change, but truths have emerged.

Alcohol is a significant revenue source that can be controlled. Former West Virginia AD Oliver Luck proved it when he argued that limiting beer and wine inside the stadium (two drinks per visit) were better than fans binge-drinking at halftime. The West Virginia model is 8 years old. (Security officials actually used to have a “Code Vomit” to identify out-of-control drinking in the stands before it was regulated.)  The SEC’s no-booze policy dates back to at least 1978, according to Sports Illustrated. There will be significant discussion this week in Destin about opening up the spigots. Time for a toast?

, the SEC continued its image makeover. If nothinproblems between Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann.It’s been suggested Messi doesn’t get along with the arrival from Atletico Madrid.But Pique says: “Leo and Grizzi get along well, it’s the same for Dembélé or before with Pedro… “It’s true that g else, the league will celebrate its hoops  success in Destin. Having one-quarter of the Sweet 16 hadn’t happened in the SEC in 22 years. Auburn made a Cinderella run to the Final Four.

The general upgrade in basketball fortunes means more pressure to win. Six of the 14 SEC schools have changed coaches in the last two seasons — four in the last couple of months. Alabama snagged up-and-comer Nate Oates from Buffalo. Veteran (and Nevada) coach Eric Musselman will make his Power Five debut at Arkansas. Buzz Williams left Virginia Tech for Texas A&M. Jerry Stackhouse takes over at Vanderbilt after the surprising firing of Bryce Drew.

That’s not counting Will Wade, wh goalkeeper David Seaman is backing Nice coach Patrick Vieira for the Gunners job.Arsenal are starting their search for a new manager for only the second time in 23 years after sacking Unai Emery.And ex-Gunners captain Vieira, now manager of Nice, coo snagged an SEC title (and lots of FBI attention) in his second year at LSU. Kentucky remains the team to beat, but it definitely has some competition. 

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Virginia Tech vs. West Virginia prediction, pick, odds, watch live stream, TV channel

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For years, the Black Diamond Trophy was awarded to the winner of and , border rivals and bitter conference rivals during their days in the Big East. The two squads haven’t played since 2005, and an offseason full of smack talk has added to the hype for this Sunday night showdown at FedEx Field in Landover, Md.. 

Both teams enter 2017 with e’s unsure of his next move.While his father has pushed for a switch to Napoli, James is said to be eager to hear from Manchester United before making a final decision.In Brazil for the Copa America, the Colombia captain said: “I do not know, I have new starting quarterbacks — redshirt freshman for Tech, former quarterback for the Mountaineers — and VT comes into it after winning 10 games and finishing in the top 25 a year ago, starting this season in the preseason poll. Dana Holgorsen and Justin Fuente both ascended the coaching ranks as well-respected offensive coordinators, and this game is expected to be very informative in terms of how each team has handled the turnover and whether either squad is primed to make a run at the favorites in their respective conferences.

Viewing information 

Sunday, Sept. 3 | 7:30 p.m. ET FedEx Field — Landover, Maryland ABC |

Storylines

: Hokie fans seemed to know the names of all the offensive staff members prior to Justin Fuente’s arrival — and not for good reasons. The slide from winning ACC Coastal Division and cor Mikel Arteta admits that he needs to get into the Champions League to sign better players.The Gunners are among several teams that are trying to find a route into the top four in the Premier League.Given they are out of theback Juan Miranda.RAC1 says Juve sporting director Fabio Paratici is in Barcelona today for negotiations over Miranda.Juve have offered Daniele Rugani as part of the deal.However, Olympique Marseille remain ahead of the Bianconeri as they want to tak Europa League, the leagunference titles to fighting for bowl eligibility was defined by an offense that could never get on the same page and produce consistently across an entire season. Logan Thomas and Michael Brewer each had games — and moments in games — where everything was clicking. Bud Foster’s Lunch Pail Defense was complemented by an offense that could go toe-to-toe with anyone in the country. But there were also moments, like this one against in 2014, that haunt Virginia Tech fans to this day. 

Fuente brought a strong offensive reputation with him and quickly put his system in with a first-year starter in , who meshed well with some proven pieces already on the roster (, to name a few) and went on to break or tie 10 offensive school records on the way to a Coastal Division title and the program’s first 10-win season since 2011. The defense still looks loaded, so the main intrigue is whether Fuente’s instant offensive impact has another act with a new cast in 2017. 

: Are the Mountaineers a legit top-25 team? Holgorsen has expressed a lot of confidence in Grier, who did go 6-0 as Florida’s starter before his PED suspension, but WVU a handful of key contributors on both lines and two of its top receiving targets. The running back position is loaded, and Tony Gibson has done a great job with the defense in recent years, but like Virginia Tech, there are a lot of questions that need to be answered early to back up hype that seems to be more residual from last year’s 10-win season (the program’s best finish since joining the Big 12) than a projection of performance in 2017. 

The good news for West Virginia is that this is nothing new. Entering his seventh season, Holgorsen has moved from being a hot name to temporarily flirting with the hot seat and now seems firmly entrenched with his system and people in place. This is a program where a postseason appearance is the floor and every few years they’ll creep up and challenge for the Big 12 title. These transition years after the peak seasons are always going to be interesting to track because West Virginia could very well be a top-25 team, but in a tough Big 12, that can only be determined by they how they perform against comparable foes from other power conferences, like Virginia Tech.

Prediction

FedEx Field has been a house of horrors for Virginia Tech, but I think they’ll exorcise some demons in a game that should be much lower scoring than you’d think based on the offensive reputation of both coaches. Bud Foster has been scouting the one-back attack of WVU all summer and while I’m sure Holgo will have some wrinkles that can catch the Lunch Pail D off guard I favor the Hokies in that matchup against a first-time starter under center. It’s going to be a rock fight that probably ends on a field goal, so I’m taking the underdog but think Virginia Tech ultimately wins straight up.

VT -4.5 SU