Liverpool fans set Twitter ablaze after talkSPORT journo claims club “lucky” in the Champions League.

It’s the 25th of May 2005. Istanbul is about to stand witness to one of the craziest roller coaster rides in the history of European football. By the end of the first half, Liverpool find themselves 3-0 down. They thought it was all over. But it wasn’t. If there’s one thing Liverpool are known for, it’s hope.

Courtesy of a man of the match performance by Liverpool’s Man Friday, Steven Gerrard, Liverpool clawed their way back into the game. A fifth European title, which seemed like a distant possibility in the first half now seems anything but.

The match went into extra time, then penalties. Liverpool and AC Milan had both won their last European cups after winning penalty shoot-outs. It’s anyone’s game now. But as Andriy Shevchenko squares up to Jerzy Dudek, there is a sparkle in the eyes of the Polish keeper. Shevchenko shoots straight down the middle, Dudek dives down to his right. Everything stops. Time slows down. Shevchenko thinks he’s won it. But Dudek saves with his left hand. Liverpool have now won their fifth European Cup.

The match will forever be referred to as the “Miracle of Istanbul”. Was it really a miracle, though? Adrian Durham certainly seems to think so –

“Liverpool are always, always lucky”, he says. “In Istanbul, it was all about pure luck”, he says. He even goes so far as to say that Liverpool were riding their luck against European giants Bayern Munich in the previous round this year.

The moment he said this, there were tongues of fire emanating from the eyes of every Liverpool fan on the planet. In his two minute rant, Durham went on to say that Liverpool were “lucky” in last year’s run up to the Champions League final and were once again lucky to draw Porto in the quarter-finals.

Liverpool fans are not known for shying away from critics. Twitter was abuzz with criticism against the talkSPORT journo, with Liverpool fans labeling the rant as “disrespectful” towards both clubs, especially Porto.

One thing is for certain. Adrian Durham will forever have to tread lightly in the city of Liverpool. But maybe Lady Luck will come around and save him. After all, Liverpool are known to have a string of luck, don’t they, Mr. Durham?

 

(Video) Look how much it means for the Slavia Prague players to play against Chelsea

The UEFA Europa league draws came out this Friday right after the Champions League fixtures were announced.  Former Feyenoord player and a UEFA cup winner Pierre van Hooijdonk picked out the following draw:

[Source: The Guardian]

Former Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti will return to London with his Napoli side to face Arsenal. Villarreal will face fellow league rivals Valencia. The other two fixtures involve teams facing each other for the first time ever. Benfica’s loanee Luka Jovic will face his own team as Frankfurt face Benfica. Meanwhile, former Chelsea player Miroslav Stoch will now play in the Stamford Bridge wearing Slavia Praha colours.

Sarri’s Chelsea despite performing poorly in the Premier League has performed extremely well in the European competition having won 9, drawn 1 and lost none. They defeated their round of 32 and round of 16 opponents Malmo FF and Dynamo Kyiv effortlessly. The 5-0 victory in Kiev showed the world how good they can play. Olivier Giroud scored a perfect hattrick and the Frenchman has now netted 9 goals in Europa itself.  The tournament has also given Callum Hudson-Odoi a fair chance to show the world how good he is. Even without their star player Eden Hazard, Chelsea is a dangerous side to play against in Europa.

Slavia Praha meanwhile sits at the top of the table in the Czech first league.  The last time Slavia visited London was in 2007 against Arsenal, where they faced their biggest Europa league defeat of 7-0.

But this season Slavia has displayed a strong performance and have beaten the most successful team in the competition, Sevilla, who have won the competition 5 times. Slavia came back from behind to win the game in extra time.

The last time they progressed to the quarter-finals of Europa League back in the 2015-16 season, they faced Villareal and lost. This is the farthest any Czech club has made it in the competition.

They might be the best in their own domestic league, but they are yet to prove themselves in Europe. And what better way to show their grit than to give the former UEFA Champions League winners a tough fight.

Chelsea is a big European team, ranking 17th in UEFA team rankings. Their squad is filled with individual superstars like Eden Hazard, Willian and Higuain, and world cup winners Kante, Giroud and Pedro.

Playing against such a star-studded line up is not a part of daily routine for teams like Slavia. It is a golden opportunity for them, to display their skills against Europe’s finest.  So no wonder when the players found out they would be going head to head with the Blues, this is how they reacted:

The Blues though boast a brilliant track record, having won 3 and drawn 3, and are unbeaten against Czech opponents. They would certainly want to maintain this record against Prague as well. The odds are definitely in favour of Chelsea. But this has been a season of inconsistent performances for Sarri.

Chelsea were unbeaten in the League for the first  12 gameweeks as well, but have performed poorly since then. Looking at their current form nothing can be said for sure.

It will be an exciting contest, seeing how Prague will prepare for this. They surely will give their 100%, but would their best be good enough to beat Chelsea?

Man United assistant manager commits a ‘Phelany’ after Liverpool’s win against Bayern Munich

Four English teams in the quarter-finals of the Champions League. What a time to be English! Liverpool’s victory over Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena coupled with Chelsea’s and Arsenal’s wins in the Europa League has ensured that for the first time since 1971 six English sides have progressed into the next round of European competition.

Bayern Munich are nothing less than European royalty and Liverpool’s victory over the Germans have caught the eye of one particular Red Devil. It seems that United’s assistant manager Mike Phelan has had his pick of the lot.

Now, before United fans pelt their desktops with stones, let me tell you this. These are Mike Phelan’s words, not mine.

Have a look –

Via Twitter/@Mike_Phelan_1

While it may seem that Liverpool have gone off the boil in recent weeks, those fears have been put to rest, courtesy of a moment of magic at the Allianz Arena from Liverpool’s main man, Sadio Mane. The Senegalese, who is in the form of his life now has 10 goals in his last ten.

Liverpool fans will be hoping that Mike Phelan does them a favor when table-toppers Manchester City visit Old Trafford in gameweek 35. Of late, United fans have been caught in between somewhat of a rock and a hard place, with the 1st place in the PL frequently exchanging hands between bitter rivals Liverpool and Pep Guardiola’s Citizens.

Man United, meanwhile, have their own worries. The arrival of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as the interim boss has breathed new life into Pogba and co, with United sitting within shouting distance of a Champions League spot, two points behind the Gunners. The Red Devils do have Chelsea breathing down their neck, and with United yet to face Man City and Chelsea at home, it may seem like United’s baby-faced assassin has his work cut out for him.

Liverpool, who trail leaders City by a solitary point can only sit and hope that the Red Devils huff and puff and blow down City’s house.

A dog joined in on the celebrations with the Leeds United fans during Reading win

Leeds United took another step towards the automatic qualification spots for the Premier League next season as they swept a lacklustre Reading side 3-0 here at Madejski Stadium.

Mateusz Klich opener followed by a brace from Spaniard Pablo Hernandez was more than enough for the Whites to claim a comfortable victory.

Leeds were firm favourites against the relegation-threatened Reading side and their intentions were clear right from the kick-off.

It took them only 14 minutes as Mateusz Klich finished it off from inside the penalty box after some slick play down the right flank.

And before the home side could react, Leeds took advantage of some sloppy passing and created a shooting opportunity for Pablo Hernandez who tucked it into the bottom corner.

The Spaniard struck again on the 43rd minute to wrap the game up for his side, this time with a screamer from outside the box giving Reading keeper Emiliano Martinez absolutely no chance.

With this brace, Hernandez now has 10 goals in the Championship this year and if you consider his 11 assists too, the midfielder is surely proving himself to be one of the most prominent stars in this years’ competition.

It was the White’s fourth win in the last five games and the fans are absolutely delighted.

Besides the performance on the field, there’s another aspect of the game that is winning the hearts of many Leeds fans.

In a viral video, Rita, a guide dog can be seen to join the celebration with the away supporters after the referee blew the full-time whistle.

Have a look at the brilliant footage here –

Rita and her owner are all-weather supporters of the Whites and many fans have reported spotting the pair in each and every game the club plays.

With only nine games to go, Leeds are closer to the Premier League than ever and this kind of support and dedication from their fans will only inspire their players even more.

 

 

(Video) BT Sport provides stunning angle of Sadio Mane’s ridiculous first goal v Bayern Munich

Liverpool’s Sadio Mane and Virgil van Dijk exhibited pure class as the Reds thrashed Bayern Munich 3-1 at their own backyard to progress to the quarter-final of the UEFA Champions League.

The teams played out a 0-0 draw at Anfield last month and the Bavarians were expected to come out all guns blazing at their home turf.

They did start the game well but a resilient Liverpool defence did extremely well to keep the initial waves of pressure at bay.

As the game progressed Liverpool slowly started to get back into the game but both the teams seemed to lack ideas and creativity in the final third.

But it was Liverpool who looked better and better with every passing second and started to control the game.

And they were the ones who struck first as Sadio Mane displayed unearthly technique and skill to put his side in the lead.

The Senegalese international latched on to a searching long ball from Virgil Van Dijk and brought it under control with a heavenly touch.

He still had a lot to do to get the ball into the back of the net and he did so with utmost calmness.

With a perfect turn, the Senegalese beat both Manuel Neuer and Rafinha before chipping it into the far corner.

Not only the chip was on target but it also had the perfect weight to leave Bayern defenders Niklas Sule and Mats Hummels mere spectators.

Have a look at this moment of brilliance courtesy of BT Sport here –

 
 
 
Mane was again on the target on the 84th minute when he headed a brilliant lobbed ball from Salah home to wrap up a memorable night for the five-time European Champions.

With Liverpool’s qualification, it is for the first time in the last ten years when four British clubs have managed to qualify for the quarter-finals stage and if they keep on performing like this, the glorious days of English football may not be far away.

Fortune cookies, Drake and Dalai Lama – Liverpool’s title bid is getting all the help it needs

Liverpool Fans Are Seducing Lady Luck Like There’s No Tomorrow

28 may seem like a random number to you. A number of little to no significance. In the red half of the city of Liverpool, however, the number has a certain gravity associated with it.

28 is the number of years Liverpool fans have had to wait for the title of Premier League champions. The number may well go up to 29 come May 12th. But if there is one thing that Liverpool fans are known for, it is their ability to cling on to hope like dear life itself. “Walk on, walk on with hope in your heart. And you will never walk alone”, they sing each night at Anfield; a song which gains an automatic bass boost during European nights.

With 8 games to go, Liverpool sit a point behind leaders Man City. But Liverpool fans are well versed with the concept of fine margins, having lost out on the title in 2013-14. This season, however, Liverpool fans are leaving nothing to luck.

  • Exhibit A – Blessings of the Dalai Lama

A Liverpool fan from Thailand carried his Liverpool scarf while seeking the blessings of the Dalai Lama. That’s one way of seeking divine intervention.

Via Time.com
  • Exhibit B – Confucius says, “Paint the Premier League red”

Call it a coincidence, or call it sheer luck. But one Liverpool fan’s fortune cookie read, and I quote, “Your sports team will be very successful this year”. With Liverpool contesting on two fronts, aiming for both, domestic and European glory, the Merseysiders could use all the luck the Reds can muster.

Via Reddit
  • Exhibit C – The cursed hotline bling

You wouldn’t associate bad luck with an artist as accomplished as Drake. However, in sports scenarios that definitely seems to be the case. Conor McGregor’s loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov was preceded by a visit from the one and only Champagne Papi. Liverpool’s 2013-14 slip up was preceded by the meet up between Daniel Sturridge and the one and only Drake. Recently, Drake was spotted with City’s Argentinian hitman, Sergio Aguero. If the stars are to be believed, Liverpool fans will be salivating.

City have scored the most goals this season, while Liverpool have conceded the least goals this season. What happens when an unstoppable force and an immovable object wrestle for the PL title? Guess we’ll find out during gameweek 38. Stay tuned, folks.

This bit from The Telegraph might be the best thing Leeds United fans will read all season

Leeds United maintained their push towards getting into the automatic promotion places with a solid 3-0 win over Reading on Tuesday.

The 3 points had temporarily displaced Norwich from the summit of the Championship but the Canaries regained their top spot with a narrow 3-2 win over Hull City.

Since getting demoted to the Championship all the way back in 2004, United finally look like they will secure their much awaited promotion back to the top flight next campaign under Marcelo Bielsa’s stewardship.

Since coming in last summer, the veteran boss has got the Whites playing with flair again and supporters have been left thrilled after watching the drastic change in style.

Especially during the early stages of his reign, Leeds were almost untouchable and had dominated the first spot in the Championship for large spells of this campaign.

While supporters would have surely been feeling pretty happy with how their side have gone about their business under the Argentine boss so far, a new report that has surfaced on The Telegraph should make them feel even more proud about Leeds’ exploits this term.

Luke Edwards has come up with a pretty enticing article explaining how Leeds have really turned up under Bielsa and should make a pretty decent read for any Leeds fan.

Calling the Whites better than the likes of Pep’s City and Solskjaer’s United, the author calls Leeds one of the most entertaining side to watch in England this year.

With United almost certain to get promoted to the top flight, seeing the historic club back in the Premier League should make for an interesting proposition for fans of all clubs in the country.

A must read for all Leeds fans! Check out a screenshot of the article here :

Via Twitter/@markrikko

Watch: Man United superfan Usain Bolt calls Arsenal ‘the best’ while wearing Gunners merchandise

World fastest man Usain Bolt is known to be a Manchester United fan through and through.

And the internet melted down last night when some fans spotted the Jamaican in arch-rival Arsenal’s colours.

Bolt, 32, is one of the most decorated athletes in the world and has won as many as 11 world championships before retiring in 2017.

But after retiring from athletics, the Jamaican went on to pursue his ambition of becoming a professional football player and to play for his dream club Manchester United one day.

He began his football training in Norway before moving to Australia to join A-League side Central Coast Mariners.

The Jamaican soon featured for the Mariners in friendly matches and scored a brace in his second appearance, prompting the New South Wales club to offer him a professional contract.

The contract, however, never realized and in November 2018, Bolt left Australia before eventually announcing his retirement last January.

For someone who went through all this after a phenomenal career in athletics just to realize the dream of playing for Manchester United, even thinking of wearing arch-rivals Arsenal’s shirt should be disastrous.

But in the viral video, the Jamaican can be seen doing exactly that.

He then even went on to kiss the Gunners badge and saying ‘Arsenal is the best’.

Have a look at the clip here –

It is most likely that the track legend has lost a wager with a friend and was forced to recite the words following Manchester United’s 2-0 defeat against the North London side.

And it was not the first time when the Jamaican was forced to a similar act.

Back in 2015, Bolt was forced to take a selfie in Arsenal colours after he lost a bet with avid Arsenal fan and TV presenter Patty Lopez de la Cerda.

 

 

(Video) Newcastle United fans loved what Isaac Hayden did after the 2nd goal v Everton

Newcastle United got back to winning ways in the Premier League with a stunning 3-2 comeback win against Everton at St James’s Park last Saturday.

Everton had lost 3 of their 5 matches, with defeats coming against Wolves, Manchester City, and Watford. Toffees though did manage to pull off a potentially title-deciding nil-nil draw against bitter rivals Liverpool.

Everton started strong with an 18th minute Dominic Calvert-Lewin goal. Things really got messy on the pitch in the 29th minute when Jordan Pickford took out Salomon Rondon while trying to punch the ball away. This was a golden chance for the Magpies to level the score. Ritchie hit the penalty low and hard but was brilliantly saved by Pickford. This was the Englishman’s 3rd penalty save of the season.

To make matters worse, Everton doubled their lead the very next minute, courtesy of a Richarlison goal. This meant Newcastle entered half time with a 2 goal deficit. Benitez took out skipper Lascelles and brought in Dummett to enforce an offensive approach in the second half.

20 minutes into the second half they managed to pull one goal when Rondon paired up with Ayoze Perez for a quick one-two. Then on the 81st minute, Perez got a goal for himself as well. Pickford saved Almiron’s initial shot but the ball fell to Perez who put the ball past the goalkeeper.

But Perez’s celebrations were cut short by his fellow teammate Isaac Hayden when he did this:

Hayden called his teammates back to the half line, asking them to concentrate on the game and try bag all the three points.

The fans loved his positive gesture. The 23-year-old English professional has been with the team for 3 seasons now after completing a move from Arsenal in 2016.

In 2013, Arsene Wenger had described Hayden as “a player whose key assets are concentration, intelligence, and strength”. He surely showed all of the above-mentioned traits in the match.

His actions did prove to be fruitful as just two minutes later when Perez scored again. This was the Spaniard’s 6th goal of the campaign.

With two goals and an assist, he did win the man of the match, but Hayden’s gestures won the fans’ hearts. These small actions are a sign of a good leader.

No wonder Benitez is trying his best to keep Isaac at the club after he submitted a transfer request in summer according to Sky Sports.

(Video) Sky Sports commentator caught singing the Patrick Bamford song during Leeds v Reading yesterday

Leeds United moved back to the top of the Championship with a comfortable 3-0 win over Reading yesterday.

While Norwich City can regain the summit if the manage to get a win against Hull City, the win should definitely boost the morale in Marcelo Bielsa’s camp as they look to secure promotion to the Premier League this year.

The veteran boss has done a tremendous job since coming in last summer and the Whites are now considered firm favorites to finish within the automatic promotion spots.

Reading had no answers to United’s attacking threat as Pablo Hernandez’s brace and Mateusz Klich’s early strike secured a comfortable win for the away side.

Hernandez added a second for Leeds shortly after Klich’s 9th minute goal and effectively ended the contest before half-time with another magnificent strike in the 43rd minute.

The victory follows the vital 1-0 win over Bristol City last week when Patrick Bamford’s 9th minute strike prevented the Canaries from extending their lead at the top.

While the 25-year-old couldn’t get himself on the score-sheet against Reading, he created plenty of problems for the home team with his movement and interplay.

During one such attack late in the game, the England striker made a brilliant run behind the defense and was picked brilliantly by Alioski but narrowly pulled his shot wide off the far post.

While Bamford looked pretty disappointed with himself for missing the chance, one of the commentators seemed to enjoy watching the striker’s attempt.

The Sky Sports commentator seems to be a fan of the attacker and proceeded to chant Bamford’s song while replays were showing the attack during his coverage of the match.

The incident was quickly spotted by Leeds fans who have posted several clips of the commentator’s chant on Twitter since.

Check out clip of the Sky Sports commentator signing the Bamford song here :