Eckel: The NHL playoffs have been … fantastic!

Eckel: The NHL playoffs have been … fantastic! (via

Sorting through the start of the NHL and NBA postseason, a championship fight and the EPL — yes, that’s soccer. The Flyers really can win at Madison Square Garden. After nine straight losses and down two goals in the first period Sunday, a 10th…

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MLS: Jermain Defoe makes it three goals in two games in Toronto FC win

Jermain Defoe and Michael Bradley: At the heart of Toronto FC win

Jermain Defoe and Michael Bradley: At the coronary heart of Toronto FC win

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Jermain Defoe was the hero again for Toronto FC with the one aim in their 1-zero MLS win over DC United.

Defoe’s calm sixtieth minute end, his third objective in two video games for his new membership, took them to a 2-zero start for the primary time in franchise history.

The former Spurs striker scored both Toronto targets in a 2-1 win over Seattle in their first sport of the season and he continued his positive type on his house debut at a packed BMO Subject.

Defoe, who hopes to remain within the hunt for an England World Cup place, could properly have scored more goals but for DC United keeper Invoice Hamid.

Hamid made a nice save to deny him within the twentieth minute and Defoe noticed a shot rebound off the post 4 minutes later.

However he finally beat Hamid on the hour with a aim made and finished by Toronto’s large identify gamers.

United States midfielder Michael Bradley performed in Brazilian veteran Gilberto and his fierce shot rebounded to Defoe, who calmly slotted home to show why the Canadian facet splashed out $100m to sign the skilled trio this winter.

Dwayne De Rosario could have put the sport out of reach in the 76th minute after Defoe played him in on purpose, but he could not beat Hamid from a decent angle.

Meanwhile, Robbie Keane scored late in the first half because the Los Angeles Galaxy bounced again from a season-opening defeat with a 1-1 draw in opposition to Actual Salt Lake.

Alvaro Saborio had earlier put Salt Lake forward in the nineteenth minute.

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Martin Skrtel, Liverpool Thrash Aresenal with 4 goals in 20 Minutes

Liverpool v Arsenal - Premier League

Martin Skrtel, Steven Gerrard, Daniel Sturridge and the rest of the Liverpool put collectively, perhaps, one of the best performance of the Premier League season Saturday vs. Arsenal. Liverpool blitzed the Gunners for 4 objectives within the first 20 minutes of the match, in a display that left American-based mostly supporters of each golf equipment and neutrals rubbing their eyes to examine in the event that they have been still asleep.

Until Arsenal posts a historic comeback, the Gunners may be overtaken for first place within the desk by each Manchester City and Chelsea this week should these two clubs win. Liverpool deserves main credit for coming out and making the primary-place Gunners, quickly, look like a bunch of rank amateurs.

Skrtel began it off, hammering house a Gerrard free kick inside the primary minute.

The terrifying-trying Slovak defender made it 2-zero minutes later with this tremendously-placed header.

Liverpool was already in dreamland when Raheem Sterling added another it make it 3-zero.

Daniel Sturridge finished the onslaught within the twentieth minute, prompting a little dancing.

The craziest half about the recreation’s first half? The highest spotlight of the half may need been Luis Suarez’s rocket that hit the publish.



Prospal retires after 20 seasons, 255 NHL goals

Prospal played the last two seasons in Columbus. (Getty Images)
Prospal performed the final two seasons in Columbus. (Getty Photos)

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After 1,108 games in a profession spent with seven totally different organizations, veteran ahead Vinny Prospal announced his retirement on Tuesday.

Prospal played the final two seasons with the Columbus Blue Jackets and was still a productive player. Last season he played in all forty eight video games and contributed 12 targets and 18 assists for a team that was starved for offense. Two seasons in the past with the Blue Jackets he performed all eighty two games and had sixteen objectives with 39 assists.

While waiting at home for a call to return to play he started to comprehend that he wished to retire and spend time along with his family anyway.

“I want to thank my teammates and coaches who helped me get pleasure from a 20-year skilled hockey profession when very few thought I’d play even one NHL sport,” said Prospal. “I sincerely wish to thank the fans who have been so good to me, treating me with such kindness and respect, for the 20 years I’ve played here in North America in each the NHL and the AHL. Playing within the NHL was a dream. To play at the highest level for sixteen years, with the perfect gamers in the world is one thing I will cherish for the rest of my life. I respect additionally the help, steerage and encouragement I obtained from my agent, Ritch Winter over the 22 years we worked together, in addition to Ritch’s associate, the late Miro Henys. Ritch and Miro believed in me when many others did not. I can’t thank them sufficient. I especially wish to thank my dad and mom for their love and assist for the reason that very beginning and their steering within the early years.

“I cherished playing hockey, I beloved scoring objectives and I loved being part of the NHL for therefore a few years. That said, inside minutes of me stepping on the ice for apply last week in Abbotsford, I knew that I wished to deal with one thing that was extra important than hockey, my family. I really like my spouse and I like my children. Having spent a lot of the last 10 months with them ready for a call to return to the ice, I know now that I’d fairly be with them at dwelling serving to and supporting my spouse and being with my children than enjoying the game I love so much. Once I got on the ice with the Abbotsford Heat last Thursday, it was clear to me that I did not have the desire to play on the level I have come to anticipate of myself anymore. And to not be able to give every little thing wanted could be to disrespect the game that has been so good to me. I’m going to focus all my time and a focus now on being an excellent father and a husband. As a result of, ultimately, my household is and can at all times be my greatest accomplishment.

“I need to thank all of the teams I’ve played with for having the religion in me they did. I especially need to thank the Vancouver Canucks, with whom I have by no means performed a recreation for, and my coach and buddy, John Tortorella, for helping me have closure that may not have occurred had they not prolonged to me the opportunity they did last week. I appreciate Torts and the Canucks for his or her faith in me and am sorry I can’t be reunited with one of the influential folks in my life in Torts as we had planned.”

Prospal was drafted within the third spherical, 71st overall, by the Flyers in 1993. He then played for the Senators, Panthers, Lightning, Ducks, again with the Lightning, back to the Flyers, then again to the Lightning, the Rangers and at last the Blue Jackets. He never won a Stanley Cup, coming closes with the Flyers in 2007-08. He did win a bronze medal with the Czech Republic on the 2006 Winter Olympics in Torino.

Prospal completed his profession with 255 objectives and 510 assists over the 1,108 video games.

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Langenbrunner retires after 16 seasons, 243 goals

Langenbrunner finished out his career in St. Louis. (Getty Images)
Langenbrunner completed out his profession in St. Louis. (Getty Images)

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Veteran ahead Jamie Langenbrunner was unable to discover a contract for this season so on Wednesday the NHLPA introduced the 38-12 months-old has formally retired from professional hockey.

Langenbrunner, who spent the last two seasons with the Blues but solely played 4 games in the 2013 season, performed 1,109 video games in his career between the Blues, New Jersey Devils and the Dallas Stars, the crew that drafted him. He was with the Stars for the Stanley Cup run in 1998-ninety nine, contributing 10 targets and 7 assists in the playoffs.

He was traded to the Devils a couple seasons later along with Joe Nieuwendyk and gained a second Stanley Cup with New Jersey in 2002-03. He has a robust postseason for New Jersey, scoring 11 goals and adding seven assists in 24 games.

“It was a dream come true to have the opportunity to play in the NHL for sixteen seasons. The friendships I developed with my teammates, and in addition the individuals within the communities where I played, will always be cherished by my household and I,” Langenbrunner mentioned within the launch. “I wish to thank Bob Gainey, Lou Lamoriello and Doug Armstrong for giving me the chance to play against the top players in hockey, in the most effective league in the world. I would additionally wish to thank my coaches and teammates for helping a child from Minnesota take pleasure in a protracted, fulfilling hockey career. Finally I’d wish to thank my really amazing family for all their sacrifices they made so I might live my dream.”

Langenbrunner also represented the USA twice in the Olympics, successful a silver medal with the People in 2010 in Vancouver. The other time he wore the red, white and blue on the Olympics was in 1998 in Nagano.

All advised Langenbrunner completed his profession with 243 goals – 58 of them game winners – and 420 assists. In his additional 146 postseason video games he had 34 targets and 53 assists.

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Bundesliga: Borussia Dortmund striker Robert Lewandowski aiming for more goals

Robert Lewandowski: Borussia Dortmund striker feels he should have more league goals

Robert Lewandowski: Borussia Dortmund striker feels he should have extra league objectives

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Borussia Dortmund striker Robert Lewandowski will not be joyful together with his season up to now, despite topping the Bundesliga scoring charts with 11.

The Poland worldwide believes he and his membership might and may have scored far more targets than they have accomplished this season, thus explaining why they’re already 12 factors adrift of league leaders Bayern Munich with lower than half of the season gone.

“I am under no circumstances joyful,” Lewandowski informed the Bild newspaper. “Despite scoring eleven, I ought to have had much more.

“We have just given away too many points not as a result of we’ve performed badly, but as a result of we have wasted our probabilities.

“We’ve all received in charge ourselves, and it is irritating.”

Lewandowski, who will announce in January who he shall be taking part in for subsequent season after choosing to depart Dortmund as soon as his contract expires, hopes they will turn the corner quickly and nonetheless be capable of mount a problem on the prime of the table.

“We all know that we want wins and desperately need to put a run collectively now,” Lewandowski mentioned.

“We need to start off in opposition to Hertha Berlin. We need to hit the ground operating in the second half of the marketing campaign to reduce the deficit on Leverkusen and Bayern.

“We can’t afford to drop any extra points.”

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Premier League: Goals from Gary Hooper and Leroy Fer help Norwich beat West Brom

Leroy Fer: Downed the Baggies with a second for Norwich in the final minute

Leroy Fer: Downed the Baggies using a second for Norwich in the last minute

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Norwich won on their travels just for the second time this season thanks to the hard-fought 2-0 victory at Western Bromwich Albion.

Gary Hooper opened the rating in the 13th minute and Leroy Fer sealed the contest having a well-taken finish in the final moment.

West Brom had countless chances to take a minimum of a point from this game with Stephane Sessegnon twice failing to transform great opportunities and Shane Lengthy also guilty of being profligate before goal.

It is currently one win in nine online games for the Baggies, and Steve Clarke’s side were booed off with full-time.

The particular midweek hiding against a Luis Suarez-inspired Liverpool at Anfield acquired put Canaries boss Chris Hughton’s position under further scrutiny, yet he would have been delighted with the method his side responded as they leapfrogged their opponents in the table.

After starting gaily they took the lead having a wonderful strike from Hooper.

Nathan Redmond given Fer, who picked out the striker’s run with the aid of a deflection away Diego Lugano’s heel. The position of the pass was taking Hooper away from goal but he fizzed a superb strike beyond Boaz Myhill.

Albion searched for a quick response with Youssouf Mulumbu, back from suspension, firing directly at John Ruddy after wonderful link play with Morgan Amalfitano.

The Frenchman’s teasing cross from the right then noticed Victor Anichebe get in a header which Ruddy gratefully grasped.

Norwich were becoming penned in their own half yet Johan Elmander should have done much better from a quick break.

The Swede’s flick-on discovered Hooper, who quickly returned your pet the ball. However , Elmander after that ignored his better placed hit partner as he drove forward plus saw his shot blocked.

The hosts had been soon back on the offensive, along with Ruddy tipping a fierce Anichebe shot wide of goal, just before Sessegnon contrived to fail to create any contact with a Chris Brunts corner which found him unmarked.

Double change

It summed upward West Brom’s first half plus Clarke made two changes in the break, bringing on Long plus Saido Berahino for Liam Ridgewell and, surprisingly, Amalfitano.

They helped spark Albion into a very strong start to the second fifty percent and they could have had a penalty each time a Sessegnon shot, after a goalmouth scramble, struck Martin Olsson on the provide as he made the block.

They should have been degree in the 52nd minute when Sessegnon surged past two Norwich defenders into the box, but the Frenchman folded his shot wide of the article having beaten the advancing Ruddy.

At the various other end Redmond’s pace proved an excessive amount of to handle for Uruguay defender Lugano, whose vulnerability will doubtless become noted by England manager Roy Hodgson, but the winger’s pull-back cannot find Hooper.

Sessegnon then spurned another opportunity after Olsson had gifted the particular ball to him six back yards out, with Ruddy making the particular save.

Lengthy became the latest man to skip for West Brom a few moments later on.

Mulumbu’s deflected shot fell to him in the region, but his shot was as well tame to beat Ruddy.

Mulumbu fired an attempt wide but all the home side’s pressure came to nothing and they had been punished as Redmond found Fer for the midfielder to cut inside plus fire low beyond a flat-footed Myhill with a minute remaining.

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Chelsea beaten, Reds win again

Stoke: Saw off Chelsea at The Brit

Stoke: Saw off Chelsea at The British

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Chelsea had been stunned at Stoke, Liverpool thumped West Ham while there were furthermore wins for Crystal Palace plus Norwich in the Premier League.

Chelsea missed the opportunity to make up some ground on commanders Arsenal as they suffered a 3-2 defeat to Stoke at the Britannia Stadium.

Andre Schurrle scored in each fifty percent for the Blues while Peter Stoop, Stephen Ireland and substitute Oussama Assaidi netted one apiece for that Potters, who lost Charlie Adam to a first-half injury.

The loss saw Jose Mourinho’s side drop to third at the rear of Liverpool,

degree on 30 points with the Yellows and four behind the Gunners.

Liverpool terminated four goals past 10-man Western Ham as they moved up 2 places following a match that noticed three own goals scored within the 4-1 scoreline.

Guy Demel was unfortunate in order to gift the Reds the business lead just before the break before Mamadou Sakho and Luis Suarez netted either side of Martin Skrtel’s blunder which pulled one back again for the Hammers.

Joey O’Brien then sent the particular ball into his own net to finish the scoring in the match which usually saw Kevin Nolan sent away from after 82 minutes.

Pablo Osvaldo cancelled out there Sergio Aguero’s opener to end Stansted City’s four-match winning run since Manuel Pellegrini’s side were kept to a 1-1 draw against Southampton at St Mary’s and lowered down to fourth.

New manager Tony Pulis documented his second win in charge of Amazingly Palace following Tuesday night’s success over West Ham as they noticed off Cardiff 2-0 at Selhurst Park.

Cameron j. Jerome’s early header put the Silver eagles ahead before Marouane Chamakh netted his second goal in 2 matches to move Palace up to eighteenth spot.

Norwich bounced back from their midweek knocking at Anfield as goals through Gary Hooper and Leroy Fer earned them a valuable win over Western Brom at The Hawthorns.

Hooper scored the opener in the 13th minute before Fer finished off a sharp counter past due on to seal a 2-0 triumph as the Canaries pulled away from the risk zone into 14th, two factors above their opponents.

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Premier League: Jose Mourinho admits Chelsea defence is ‘a big concern’

Jose Mourinho accepted Chelsea’s porous defence is “a big concern” after his part lost 3-2 at Stoke upon Saturday.

The particular Blues manager appeared somewhat surprised after watching his Blues group go down to a late Oussama Assaidi goal at the Britannia Stadium.

Andre Schurrle got given the visitors the guide in the Premier League encounter yet goals from Peter Crouch plus Stephen Ireland put Stoke in the front before Schurrle made the scoreline level once more.

However , Assaidi’s intervention meant the particular points stayed in the Potteries.

“I don’t feel comfortable to tell you what I consider the game, ” Mourinho told Skies Sports soon after the final whistle.

“I prefer to end up being simple and pragmatic – we have scored one goal less than them and lost.

“I can’t analyse with you certain facets of the game, or individual performances.

“I don’t wish to take credit away from them. Easily was Mark (Hughes), I’d become upset if the opposition manager simply said ‘we lost’. They do something to get a point, maybe not in order to win. “

Mourinho was asked about his protection, having conceded six goals within back-to-back away games at Sunderland and Stoke.

“It’s a big concern, ” mentioned the Chelsea boss. “I avoid organise my teams this way. Person mistakes kill a team as well as the way we work.

“But, there are also the targets we didn’t score. In the 1st half, we had lots of occasions where a simple movement and finish could have meant the job was done. We ought to score more goals than we all did.

“Our first half was fantastic. All of us dominated. We had dozens of situations whenever we won the ball back… yet we didn’t kill the game.

“We gave living to an opponent who was in huge trouble. In the second half, it had been less football – push right here, pull there, yellow card, free-kick. “

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Premier League: Michael Dawson says Tottenham can go all the way and expects goals to flow

Michael Dawson: Confident that Tottenham can challenge for trophies

Michael Dawson: Confident that Tottenham can problem for trophies

Michael Dawson is confident that Tottenham Hotspur have the standard to win a trophy this season and believes it’s only a matter of time before the objectives begin to circulation.

Spurs have made a strong start to their Premier League marketing campaign and picked up 20 points from their first 11 video games, however last weekend’s 1-zero loss at dwelling to Newcastle United left them seventh within the desk.

Dawson stays upbeat about Tottenham’s possibilities of qualifying for the UEFA Champions League and insists they’re even able to challenging for the title.

“Our expectations are high,” he advised the Daily Star Sunday. “There is no hiding firstly of the season. Our aim was to be in the high 4. That hasn’t changed.

“But we goal high and we consider that now we have got the squad – and the quality in the dressing room – to go all the way in which.”

Dawson has been part of a defence which has conceded just six league goals so far this season, and he believes that may be a nice foundation to construct on.

The centre-again is convinced that Spurs’ attacking players will soon start to click into gear, having scored just nine occasions up to now, and drive the club on to a successful season.

He mentioned: “It is great retaining clean sheets and I take great satisfaction in that. As a group, we have worked very arduous at that facet.

“Yes, we would have appreciated to have scored a few more goals and turned a couple of more of the draws into wins.

“However we’ve got had an important begin. Our greatest in the Premier League. We have now to take a lot of positives from that. And people goals will come.

“As the supervisor says, the goal is to win a trophy this season and we are going for every competition.

“However everyone desires to play every sport and the squad we now have means that any staff the supervisor chooses can do properly in the Premier League.”

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Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas plays down lack of Premier League goals

Andre Villas-Boas: Has no concerns over dearth of league goals

Andre Villas-Boas: Has no considerations over dearth of league objectives

Andre Villas-Boas has insisted he is not anxious about Tottenham Hotspur’s low Premier League goal tally, whereas he has urged Emmanuel Adebayor to work exhausting to attempt to earn a recall.

Spurs have scored simply nine times of their opening ten league games after drawing a clean in Sunday’s 0-zero draw away to Everton.

Nonetheless, Villas-Boas believes it’s unfair to criticise the group for an absence of firepower, pointing to their report of 30 goals in 17 matches general this time period.

Villas-Boas has been happy with Tottenham’s performances and maintains that a very powerful thing is that they’re fourth in the table.

He stated: “The probabilities are coming and sometimes they go your means and the opponent isn’t there to cease it.

“The team is creating more chances and extra shots. I keep it up about all the great statistics and others about all of the negative, and there will likely be debate.

“At the moment it’s outcomes that have put us in fourth and into one of the spots in the Champions League.

“You may have extra targets, much less targets. All of us need pleasure however right now the crew is doing extremely properly.”

Villas-Boas was asked on the post-match press convention why he continues to overlook the claims of Adebayor, who is but to function this season and has spoken out about his frustration.

Villas-Boas stated: “There’s competition for locations and you need to try to break into the crew.

“Irrespective of how hard you attempt the others are trying as arduous.

“He must be patient and look ahead to the opportunity each time it arises.

“That is the nature of each high club.

“He has to proceed working exhausting. It is just the others are working simply as hard.”

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Wiggins’ goals: KU title, being ’14 top pick

Kansas better win now as a result of freshman Andrew Wiggins has acknowledged that he’ll most probably be heading to the NBA subsequent season.

In an interview for ESPN The Magazine’s school basketball preview issue, Wiggins was asked what he is loved most since he arrived at Kansas.

“I’d say just having the ability to get pleasure from my final yr of college,” Wiggins said.

The 6-foot-eight wing is extensively considered a lock to be the top pick within the 2014 draft if he declares.

He was requested his goals for this season.

“Win another championship, a national championship,” he mentioned. “Follow in Anthony Bennett’s footsteps of going No. 1.”

The previous 4 No. 1 picks (Bennett, Anthony Davis, Kyrie Irving and John Wall) performed just one year in school. Blake Griffin, the highest choose in 2009, performed two years, and Derrick Rose (2008) was one-and-carried out at Memphis.

So No. 1 is the plan, Wiggins was asked.

“Yeah, if that’s attainable if I can, yeah,” he said.

Meanwhile, Oklahoma State sophomore guard Marcus Sensible, projected as a high-three decide by ESPN NBA Insider Chad Ford, stated Wiggins first has to show he is the most effective within the Big 12.

“A lot of people are saying he’s the perfect player now in school basketball,” Good said of Wiggins throughout the Big 12’s media day. “All I am saying is how will you be the most effective player in one thing you haven’t even performed but?”

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Goals for Yankees GM: Keep Girardi, Cano

THE BIG APPLE – New York Yankees general supervisor Brian Cashman says the crew desires Joe Girardi again as manager.

[+] EnlargeJoe GirardiMark Goldman/Icon SMIBrian Cashman will meet Wednesday with the agent for Joe Girardi about maintaining the manager (above) in New York.

Employed after the 2007 season, Girardi’s contract expires on the end of October. Crippled by injuries, the Yankees went 85-77 this season – their worst document since 1992 – and finished tied for third in the AL East.

Talking two days after the group’s season ended, Cashman stated Tuesday that Girardi “knows we might like to have him keep and proceed as manager of the New York Yankees as we transfer ahead.”

Cashman, who stated he thinks Girardi “likes it here,” will meet Wednesday with Girardi’s agent. Cashman wouldn’t say whether he would give the Chicago Cubs permission to speak with Girardi about their managerial opening. The Cubs fired Dale Sveum on Monday.

Heading into the offseason, the Yankees want to re-signal All-Star second baseman Robinson Cano, who can change into a free agent after the World Sequence.

Cashman additionally mentioned it’s unclear whether the Yankees will be able to get beneath next yr’s $189 million luxurious tax threshold, which incorporates about $177 million for player salaries.

“It is actually a purpose; it’s not a mandate,” he mentioned. “There’s plenty of advantages to staying under that, but it surely’s not a mandate on the expense of a championship run.”

He also plans to deal with the Yankees’ lack of power this season.

“We acquired derailed this yr by determination-making as well as accidents,” Cashman stated.


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Liverpool beat Man United, still on pace for 38 wins from 38 Daniel Sturridge goals


With a 1-0 win in opposition to Manchester United at Anfield, Liverpool now have three wins from three Daniel Sturridge objectives (each coming within the first half). It’s the first time they have ever gained all of their first three matches with three clear sheets to start out a high-flight season in the club’s historical past. Clearly it will proceed to the end.

Daniel Sturridge, who solely just joined the club in January, celebrated his twenty fourth birthday along with his fifth objective in all competitions this season (he scored twice in Liverpool four-2 Capital One Cup win over Notts County, as nicely). And in doing so, has proven that Liverpool aren’t as dependent on disloyal human biter Luis Suarez, who is still serving his latest ban, as they as soon as were.

In addition to Sturridge’s birthday mojo, Liverpool additionally had the added mystique of a pre-match celebration for what would have been legendary supervisor Invoice Shankly’s 100th birthday (which is definitely September 2).



The high quality of play on this version of the north west derby will not be the subject of any sonnets. Man United performed poorly coming off a zero-zero draw towards Chelsea at Previous Trafford and Liverpool will be grateful for Sturridge’s brilliantly redirected header in just the 4th minute.

A good 38 wins from 38 Daniel Sturridge targets and 38 clear sheets might be a bit an excessive amount of to expect from Liverpool this season, however they appear to be coming together in season two beneath Brendan Rodgers. With Mamadou Sakho and Tiago Ilori finalizing deals and Victor Moses and Aly Cissokho joining on mortgage, an improvement on last season’s seventh-place end seems seemingly. Even when Sturridge by some means would not set a new scoring report.