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Steve McClaren makes no excuses after Newcastle’s defeat to West Ham

first_img They even asked for the kick-off to be put back in order to give them time to warm up sufficiently, but to no avail. And they were caught cold at the start of each half as French star Payet fired West Ham to their first home win this season. “We can make excuses and say the preparation wasn’t ideal, but it’s no excuse,” said McClaren. “We felt the preparation wasn’t long enough and asked the referee to put it back. “But we didn’t do tonight what we have done for the previous four games in terms of organisation, discipline and being hard to beat, we lacked that. “We shot ourselves in the foot, especially for second goal. “It’s a learning process and we’ve learned a lot tonight. You don’t like going through nights like tonight, it’s painful, but sometimes you have to.” West Ham could sense Newcastle were there for the taking after just nine minutes when £10.5million summer signing Payet capped a sweeping move with a stunning opener. Mark Noble collected Diafra Sakho’s backheel in the penalty area and laid the ball back for the midfielder to coolly sidefoot a curling effort into the top corner. Three minutes into the second half West Ham doubled their lead when Victor Moses was desperately unlucky not to mark an impressive first appearance with a goal. The Chelsea loanee ran almost the length of the field following a Newcastle free-kick, only to crash his shot against the crossbar. The ball bounced down and out towards the lurking Payet, who thumped it into an empty net to take his tally for the season to three. “We fully deserved the three points, we were better from the start and we scored at the right time,” said Bilic. “It’s small proof that we really did well in the transfer window. Payet is a player I wanted from the start. “I’ve known him for a long time, he is one of those players who is not only a great player who scores goals and makes goals, but he also makes the players around him play better.” The Hammers are now up to fifth in the Barclays Premier League but Bilic added: ” I didn’t set targets in terms of finishing in the top 10. “Our target is that we want a good team that can defend with numbers and can attack with numbers, a team who can keep the ball. “If we succeed in that that should give us more points. But I don’t know if we will be fifth, or 15th.” Steve McClaren was forced to endure another miserable evening at the hands of Slaven Bilic as Newcastle slumped 2-0 at West Ham. McClaren, who lost his job as England boss eight years ago after a Wembley defeat to Bilic’s Croatia, saw his side shot down by two goals from Hammers new boy Dimitri Payet. The night did not start well for the Toon, either, after they arrived late at the stadium having had to walk the last mile of the journey due to the heavy traffic. Press Associationlast_img read more

Arsenal Takes Emirates FA Cup to Dubai

first_imgFresh from their victory over Chelsea FC, Arsenal took the Emirates FA Cup once again to Dubai after the team’s record 13th victory of the historic trophy.The Emirates FA Cup made its way to Arsenal Soccer Schools Dubai at the Sevens so that it’s lucky students could join in to take special individual and group photos with the trophy. Over 120 kids had their photo taken with the iconic trophy. Arsenal Soccer Schools Dubai is a joint venture between Emirates and Arsenal, open to boys and girls of all abilities, aging from five to 20 years.Each year, more than 400 children are taught to “Play the Arsenal Way,’ based on the same principles taught to the first team. The training programme is also designed to help aspiring young footballers develop their skills on the pitch, ensuring they have a platform to reach their potential.Emirates has been a proud sponsor of Arsenal Football Club since 2004, and the partnership includes the club’s jersey sponsorship and naming rights to Arsenal’s home ground, Emirates Stadium.In 2015 Emirates became Title Sponsor of the FA Cup, the world’s oldest and largest domestic football tournament, which is now globally known as The Emirates FA Cup.The Emirates FA Cup also made a special visit to Emirates Group Headquarters, and employees were given the chance to take pictures with the trophy.A number of Arsenal first team players have visited Dubai to train and coach students in addition to meet and greet sessions with recent visits by Mesut Ozil (May 2016), Nacho Monreal and Danny Welbeck (2015).Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

Lonzo Ball to miss 4-6 weeks as Lakers’ injuries continue to mount

first_imgWithout him, the Lakers frittered away a 15-point lead and lost in overtime.“When he went down it’s hard to do it, hard to have someone do the stuff he was doing,” Zubac said. “It’s tough, and he was moving the ball with him, we were sharing. He was running the pick and roll perfect. He was finding open shooters. It’s just tough without him. He’s a great basketball player.”Now, Ball is another player that the Lakers will have to do without. Lakers practice early hoping to answer all questions Trail Blazers, Grizzlies advance to NBA play-in game; Suns, Spurs see playoff dreams dashed Trail Blazers beat Grizzlies in play-in, earn first-round series with the Lakers Lakers, Clippers schedules set for first round of NBA playoffs Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorcenter_img LOS ANGELES — Thanks to Greg Zuerlein, at least one L.A. pro athlete had some good news come from his foot on Sunday afternoon.For the Lakers, Lonzo Ball’s left ankle brought only heartache.An MRI on Sunday revealed that Ball, the second-year point guard who has stepped up his play of late, will now be sidelined four to six weeks with a Grade 3 sprain suffered Saturday night in a loss to the Houston Rockets. The injury will not require surgery, but it will rob the Lakers of their best remaining play-maker on an already beat-up squad.The team (25-22) has been through the ringer with injuries this season: Both LeBron James (strained left groin) and Rajon Rondo (sprained right ring finger) are expected to return to practice this week after missing 13 straight games since Christmas. Neither is expected to play Monday against the defending champion Golden State Warriors. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersWith Ball now out for extended time, the three playmakers and ball-handlers that the Lakers have touted as a strength since before the season are all unable to suit up. The Lakers have gone 5-8 without James, their star, and Rondo, a key veteran, and Ball was a big reason they were able to scrape out any wins at all in that stretch and stay afloat in the middle of the packed Western Conference standings.A familiar gut-wrenching feeling struck the team in the third quarter when Ball tumbled after awkwardly rolling his ankle. He rolled on the court in apparent agony for several moments before teammates carried him to the locker room without bearing any weight on his injured foot.“‘Zo is really finding himself a nice rhythm,” Walton said Saturday night after Ball had been taken to a Houston hospital for X-rays. “We’ll miss that and the continuity but we’ll keep our heads up and keep grinding.”While Ball’s per-game production has decreased in his sophomore season as he took a more supporting role alongside James, he’s been one of the key leaders since Christmas. In the past 13 games, Ball had been averaging 12.5 points, 7.2 assists and 5.7 rebounds while shooting 37.3 percent from 3-point range.The last seven games in particular, during which the Lakers have been 4-3, seemed to mark a kind of turning point for Ball, whom teammates had said was more active, engaged and vocal to fill the vacuum left by James and Rondo. Brandon Ingram called him “the head of our team” in the past few weeks. “I think in these last three or four games, he’s been very consistent in what he does,” Ingram said. “And he continues to bring the energy, starts picking up [defense for] 94 feet, pushing the pace in transition, and it goes from there.”As of Sunday afternoon, the Lakers sat a game behind the Clippers for ninth in the West, a spot out of playoff position. They have five straight games upcoming at Staples Center with only one clearly vulnerable opponent: Golden State, Minnesota, Phoenix, Philadelphia and the Clippers. From there, they’ll embark on their longest road trip of the year leading into the All-Star break beginning Feb. 14.The situation infuses even more urgency into a looming question: How soon can James, in particular, return?Walton said Ball’s injury won’t push up the timeline for anyone else’s recovery. James is in the midst of the most serious injury of his career, already having tied the most games (13) he’s ever missed in any of his 16 NBA seasons. The Lakers have already missed his scoring punch and end-of-game poise — with Ball out, they’ll miss his play-making ability even more.Rondo was cleared for full-contact practice over the weekend, but has still been wearing a wrap around his middle and ring fingers on his right hand.If neither is able to play soon, the Lakers are likely to turn to Ingram as a point forward, which Walton has done already in the past month with James on the shelf. It would also require some extra ball-handling duties for Lance Stephenson, who had a strong second half against the Rockets, but hasn’t been an offensive focal point for much of the year.Ball’s absence for the Lakers’ defense is less tangible but potentially just as important. Even with James and Rondo out, the Lakers have sported the NBA’s third-best defensive rating (105.9 points allowed per 100 possessions) over the last 13 games. Ivica Zubac pointed out that Ball’s defense was invaluable Saturday night when the Lakers were trying to guard James Harden, and then he was able to convert stops into points on the other end.Related Articles How athletes protesting the national anthem has evolved over 17 years last_img read more