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PSG set to offer Mbappe nine-figure bonus but Real Madrid still 'confident'

Real Madrid are interested in signing Kylian Mbappe on a free transfer this summer when his contract expires, but Paris Saint-Germain have not given up hope of keeping him (Author: Gardener)

Real MadridReal Madrid are interested in signing Kylian Mbappe on a free transfer this summer when his contract expires, but Paris Saint-Germain have not given up hope of keeping him. Paris Saint-Germain 'ready' to offer Kylian Mbappe £150m for signing New deal Paris Saint-Germain are reportedly willing to pay Kylian Mbappe a £150m signing fee if he signs a two-year contract extension. The 23-year-old world champion is out of contract at the end of the season and is being linked with a move to Real Madrid. PSG are desperate to keep their prized asset and are believed to have increased their signing bonus from £125m to £150m when time runs out. PSG are also believed to be offering Mbappe an annual salary of £21million, just over £400,000 a week. The French club's Qatari owners are said to be worried about losing the talent ahead of the World Cup, to be held in Qatar later this year. When asked about his future earlier this month, the forward said: "I haven't made my decision yet, there are new elements to consider. Just new elements." It is believed Mbappe will use PSG's new offer to renegotiate a deal with Real, who are 'relaxed' on the situation. The Spanish giants tried to sign the player last summer and are 'confident' he will finally don the famous white shirt this summer. Real Madrid are even thought to have cooled off their interest in Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland, so much do they believe in Mbappe's signing. Kylian Mbappe has to decide whether to join Paris Saint-Germain for Real Madrid this summer. Should Kylian Mbappe stay at Paris Saint-Germain? PSG have reportedly offered them a commission payment of £42million if he stays in the French capital, although it's not expected to have a huge impact on the player's decision. It's easy to see why Real Madrid are interested in Mbappe. The forward has scored 160 goals in 209 games for PSG since joining the French club - initially on loan - in the summer of 2017. He has also scored 26 goals at international level and won 54 caps. But he is yet to claim a Champions League medal and lost the final in 2020. The youngster's chances of winning European football's biggest competition could be boosted by a move to Real. The Spanish team knocked PSG out of the Champions League in the round of 16 this season despite Mbappe scoring in both games. "I haven't decided my future yet," Mbappe emphasized in February - before PSG's European Cup exit. "I play for Paris Saint-Germain, one of the best clubs in the world." He continued: "I'll do my best and then we'll see what happens next season." A move to Real would see Mbappe link up with international teammate Karim Benzema, who has become a favorite at this year's Ballon d'Or after a stunning season in the Spanish capital.

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Saka's influence could help Arsenal win the transfer race with Spurs for Maddison

England international James Maddison has impressed since joining Leicester in June 2018, scoring 40 goals in all competitions and winning the FA Cup and Community Shield (Author: Gardener)

SakaEngland international James Maddison has impressed since joining Leicester in June 2018, scoring 40 goals in all competitions and winning the FA Cup and Community Shield. Both Arsenal and Tottenham are reportedly interested in signing Leicester playmaker James Maddison this summer. The 25-year-old England international with one cap has scored 13 goals and provided eight assists this season, helping Leicester reach the Europa Conference League quarter-finals. Maddison would be a huge asset for both Arsenal and Tottenham but the former club can be confident of securing his services after providing a shining reference from Bukayo Saka. "I really like the young lad Saka at Arsenal," Maddison said in November 2020. "And the thing is, I've been watching him pretty closely, because you know these days, especially when someone comes on stage quickly, they're going to be here." lined up right up there, aren't they, and they've got lights on them full, all lights.” Sometimes that can make a player take a step back, depending on how he's dealing with it. But he obviously took it in stride and Mikel Arteta seems to really like him. Big deal for him to get the number seven shirt I think. Little things like that really show that the manager trusts him. He's also scored a few goals so he's definitely one to keep an eye out for are longtime admirers of Maddison and could make a move this summer. It's believed Leicester could be tempted by a huge offer, allowing them to reinvest the money into other aspects of their squad. Maddison joined Leicester in the summer of 2018 after impressing The Championship with Norwich. The talent earned his only cap for England in November 2019 and remains on the fringes of Gareth Southgate's squad. He helped Leicester win both the FA Cup and the Community Shield in the last 12 months - his first two trophies as a player. Although Arsenal have the Saka advantage, Spurs could offer Maddison a chance to play Champions League football. Mikel Arteta's team has a game on their hands against Spurs. "Being resilient is important if we want to be a top team, in every game there are moments when the opponent can cause difficulties and if we are not strong you will never win anything or do anything important," said Conte after Spurs' 4-0 win over Aston Villa on Saturday. "We're going into that aspect, I'm very happy because I have a group of players who want to show me that they will improve in many aspects. Seven games to go and we'll show that we deserve to stay in the running for a place in the Champions League."

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Benfica boss hopes for Man Utd & Arsenal-linked Nunez transfer similar to £113m sale of Joao Felix

Manchester United, Arsenal and Uruguayan striker Darwin Nunez's many other admirers have been informed by Benfica manager Nelson Verissimo that any deal for the South American is likely to cost as much as the £113m (€147m) transfer of Joao Felix U.S. dollar). Atletico Madrid in 2019. (Author: Gardener)

BenficaManchester United, Arsenal and Uruguayan striker Darwin Nunez's many other admirers have been informed by Benfica manager Nelson Verissimo that any deal for the South American should cost as much as the £113m transfer of Joao Felix to Atletico Madrid ( $147 million). in 2019. Leading sides from across Europe, including many from the Premier League, are reportedly preparing summer attacks on the Estadio da Luz for a frontman who has struck 31 times in all competitions this season. Verissimo has told reporters when asked if Nunez, who continues to be spotted by England forward-needy sides, could make a similar fee to former Benfica striker Felix: 'What do you think? Darwin is an excellent player, he showed all his quality. "He's a young player with a lot of potential. Given his growth this season and also given his performance in the Champions League games, it is natural that he should attract the interest of the big European clubs. “It will be at the end of this season or the following season, depending on what he has shown, it is natural that it will attract interest from other clubs and of course there may be the period when he leaves. Now for the numbers, I hope as a Benfica fan he will go for numbers close to Joao Felix's. "In my everyday life with the player, in what we see in training and in games, we obviously see a top player and all top players attract the interest of the big European clubs. Darwin is on that list, of course.” Nunez joined Benfica from Spanish club Almeria in September 2020 and has scored 45 goals in 80 appearances for the club – including a hat-trick in his last game against Belenenses and a Champions League first-leg appearance quarter-final game with Liverpool. The Uruguay international is reported to be teaming up with so-called 'super agent' Jorge Mendes, who already counts Atletico star Felix and five-time Ballon d'Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo among his clients.

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Mikel Arteta has cost Arsenal a chance to have 'one of the best midfielders in the world'.

It's been a miserable week for the Gunners and Marseille boss Jorge Sampaoli's recent comments about one of his Arsenal loanees will only insult the injury further (Author: Gardener)

ArtetaIt's been a miserable week for the Gunners and Marseille boss Jorge Sampaoli's recent comments about one of his Arsenal loanees will only insult the injury further. Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has been told that Matteo Guendouzi is on course to become one of the game's best midfielders as the Frenchman's gunners close in. The 22-year-old spent the season in his native France on loan at Ligue 1 club Marseille, where his game continued to grow. So much so that his current coach, Jorge Sampaoli, believes Guendouzi will soon be considered one of the best midfielders. Ahead of Marseille's home game against Montpellier on Sunday night, the Argentinean told reporters: "He [Guendouzi] is on his way to becoming one of the best midfielders in the world." If that's the case, Arteta could be kicking himself for sanctioning his departure and arguably making the former Lorient talent's position in north London untenable. The breakdown in Arteta and Guendouzi's relationship is well-documented as the couple were at odds for the limited time they were both at the club together. Guendouzi only spent half a season under the Spaniard's management. It was during the "project restart" that the first cracks appeared, particularly in the second game since the Premier League resumed from the Covid-19-enforced suspension. Arsenal traveled to Brighton for a game that saw Guendouzi clash with Seagulls forward Neal Maupay. Arteta was believed to be furious at the Frenchman's behavior, which only worsened during a mid-season trip to Dubai that ultimately spelled the end of Guendouzi's time at the Emirates. Already in the next season he was quickly loaned to the German club Hertha Berlin. Did Arteta make mistakes dealing with Guendouzi? "He's also managed to assert himself, which you can see from his selection for the French team. He hasn't progressed thanks to me, he's matured in general." Arsenal's current problems in midfield mean Guendouzi would likely feature if he were still at the club. Thomas Partey's hamstring injury appears to have dashed Arsenal's hopes of a top-four finish as the Ghanaian was absent from Saturday's surprise home defeat by Brighton.

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Benfica boss hopes for Man Utd & Arsenal-linked Nunez transfer similar to £113m sale of Joao Felix

Manchester United, Arsenal and Uruguayan striker Darwin Nunez's many other admirers have been informed by Benfica manager Nelson Verissimo that any deal for the South American is likely to cost as much as the £113m (€147m) transfer of Joao Felix U.S. dollar). Atletico Madrid in 2019. (Author: Gardener)

BenficaManchester United, Arsenal and Uruguayan striker Darwin Nunez's many other admirers have been informed by Benfica manager Nelson Verissimo that any deal for the South American should cost as much as the £113m transfer of Joao Felix to Atletico Madrid ( $147 million). in 2019. Leading sides from across Europe, including many from the Premier League, are reportedly preparing summer attacks on the Estadio da Luz for a frontman who has struck 31 times in all competitions this season. Verissimo has told reporters when asked if Nunez, who continues to be spotted by England forward-needy sides, could make a similar fee to former Benfica striker Felix: 'What do you think? Darwin is an excellent player, he showed all his quality. "He's a young player with a lot of potential. Given his growth this season and also given his performance in the Champions League games, it is natural that he should attract the interest of the big European clubs. “It will be at the end of this season or the following season, depending on what he has shown, it is natural that it will attract interest from other clubs and of course there may be the period when he leaves. Now for the numbers, I hope as a Benfica fan he will go for numbers close to Joao Felix's. "In my everyday life with the player, in what we see in training and in games, we obviously see a top player and all top players attract the interest of the big European clubs. Darwin is on that list, of course.” Nunez joined Benfica from Spanish club Almeria in September 2020 and has scored 45 goals in 80 appearances for the club – including a hat-trick in his last game against Belenenses and a Champions League first-leg appearance quarter-final game with Liverpool. The Uruguay international is reported to be teaming up with so-called 'super agent' Jorge Mendes, who already counts Atletico star Felix and five-time Ballon d'Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo among his clients.

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Arsenal were preparing to pocket a £47million summer transfer if Arteta overhauls plans

Arsenal will inject the money again ahead of the summer transfer window but it will mean Mikel Arteta, desperate for money, will have to force some departures from the Emirates (Author: Gardener)

summerArsenal are set to inject the money again before the summer transfer window but it will mean Mikel Arteta, desperate for money, will have to force some exits from the door. Mikel Arteta has big plans for the summer transfer window as he looks to continue tinkering with his squad. He has been keen to bring the squad's overall age down - which he has achieved after a summer of bringing in the likes of Ben White, Aaron Ramsdale and Takehiro Tomiyasu. But the Gunners manager isn't done yet and has further plans to turn things around this summer. Arsenal spent over £100m last summer but are yet to come anywhere close to that number in player sales. They include Pepe, who was signed from Lille in 2019 for a club-record £72m and has not made a major appearance despite his astonishing fee. With the Ivory Coast international set to enter the final year of his contract, Arteta wants him out. The forward has made just 16 Premier League appearances - mostly off the bench - scoring just one goal. It's a surprising drop considering he scored ten goals last year and looked poised to play a bigger role in the squad. Mikel Arteta is keen to sell Nicolas Pepe this summer but Bukayo Saka's form has forced the 26-year-old to hold back and remain on the bench for large parts throughout the campaign. And it seems Arsenal are ready to soak it up and take the financial hit and move the winger on. However, it has not been a happy time for Pepe since his move to the Premier League and a departure could please all parties. Arteta has already indicated he's ready to spend in the summer and will need every penny he can get. Nicolas Pepe could be sold for as little as £25million. When asked if he expects to continue his spending spree this summer, Arteta said: "I expect so, yes." If you can afford it financially and we don't have to make the turn in the squad we have to have if you ask me what I want, is that 22 outfield players and three goalkeepers.

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Arsenal and Spurs battle for Leicester's James Maddison

Plus: Paris Saint-Germain bosses are fed up with Neymar on and off the pitch, Carlos Tevez is set to visit Antonio Conte at Tottenham's training ground, Ajax have banned British journalists from attending Erik ten Hags' press conference on Saturday (Author: Gardener)

LeicesterNorth London rivals Arsenal and Tottenham will be in contention for £60million-rated Leicester City star James Maddison in the summer. Manchester United are reportedly keen to lure Everton killer Richarlison to Old Trafford this summer. New Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag is reportedly planning to be '100 per cent' involved in the club's transfer business. Juventus are reportedly looking to sign Chelsea star Jorginho this summer. Ralf Rangnick has the worst record of any Manchester United manager ever in the Premier League after losing 1-0 to Everton. Jesse Lingard is tempted by a summer move to Italy, with former manager Jose Mourinho's AS Roma one of three Serie A sides interested in the forthcoming free agent. Erik ten Hag remains in talks with Manchester United as his future remains unclear, although Robin van Persie is hired as a potential assistant manager at Old Trafford. Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea launched an astounding tirade lamenting his team-mates after losing at Premier League contenders Everton. Todd Boehly and the Ricketts family are expected to offer Chelsea fans a "golden share" of their final bids for the Premier League club and guarantee fans a right of veto over key decisions. Despite his patriotism for Ashes rivals Australia, Justin Langer is believed to have veered from the idea of ​​coaching England but wants to take control of all three formats of the game. The Saudi-backed golf series claims to have signed two world No. 1 Ryder Cup stars ahead of its start in England this summer. Carlos Tevez is reportedly set to visit Antonio Conte at Tottenham's training ground next week for a potential Premier League return. Real Madrid have launched a new charm offensive to snatch Norway striker Erling Haaland from Manchester City's clutches. Erik ten Hag gave a frosty response when asked about reports he is set to be named Manchester United's next manager. Steven Gerrard will oversee a squad overhaul at Aston Villa this summer, with surprise names like Ezri Konsa and Tyrone Mings potentially up for grabs, while he plans moves for Liverpool's Joe Gomez and Brighton's Yves Bissouma and the difficult decision of whether to go on loan Philippe Coutinho's wage demands could fit into the club's structure. Manchester United face further financial woes if they miss out on next season's Champions League due to performance clauses in sponsorship deals with TeamViewer and Adidas. The potential new Derby County owner has confirmed he would like Wayne Rooney to remain in charge next season. Chelsea's first black player Paul Canoville has told three of the club's shortlisted bidders that he would like them to do more about anti-black racism if they manage to take control. Derby County boss Wayne Rooney has spent £20million on a Downton Abbey-style mansion in Cheshire that includes an underground spa and wine cellar. UEFA has given Ukraine the option to play the World Cup playoff semifinals against Scotland on either May 31 or June 1, with the earlier date potentially meaning Andy Robertson playing 72 hours after the Champions League final , if Liverpool gets there. Leigh Griffiths revealed boos from Celtic fans during his last appearance for the club against West Ham last summer and brought him to tears on the drive home.

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Mikel Arteta says Arsenal lacked courage and determination in their defeat by Brighton

Goals from Leandro Trossard and Enock Mwepu helped Brighton earn a deserved 2-1 win at Arsenal; the Gunners pulled one back late through Martin Odegaard but missed a chance to finish fourth; second loss in a week for Mikel Artetas' side after defeat at Crystal Palace (Author: Gardener)

BrightonMikel Arteta blasted another 'really bad' first half from his Arsenal side as a second defeat in a week further dented their top-four hopes. The Arsenal manager had urged his side to react after Monday's 3-0 defeat at Crystal Palace, but a 2-1 home defeat by Brighton saw them miss a chance to move back up to fourth place. Later on Saturday, rivals Tottenham moved up to the last qualifying spot for the Champions League by three points with a 4-0 win at Aston Villa. The Gunners underperformed again in the first 45 minutes after passing a Leandro Trossard strike and fell further behind after the break to a half-volley from Enock Mwepu. It wasn't until Martin Odegaard's deflected long-range shot pulled one back in the 89th minute that Arsenal really upped the intensity, but by that point, as Arteta conceded, it was already too late. He then went on to criticize his side's lack of reaction to Monday night and their inability to assert themselves in the game, particularly in the first half. "The first half was really bad again," he said. "The reaction we wanted to show and everything we talked about we didn't implement on the pitch, we didn't put momentum into the game, we didn't play at the right pace and we didn't change the game that Brighton proposed today, and on the first chance - the only chance they had - they scored. You can see the moment we gave them something... but we played a game where you couldn't see the purpose, the intent of what the team was trying to do. We didn't give them anything in the first half and that's on us. "It wasn't an issue of attitude, it was an issue of courage that we showed playing and we didn't have that purpose. We had no intention of attacking and intervening and provoking the situation that we wanted. That was it." Another inefficient display from forward Alexandre Lacazette, who hasn't scored in any of his last four games, but Arteta insisted the Gunners' attacking problems were a "collective problem" but accepted the tactical change he made with Emile Smith Rowe in a slightly deeper role and the decision to use Granit Xhaka at left-back and drop the out-of-form Nuno Tavares hadn't worked as hoped. "The spaces we wanted to attack, it suited Emile to play that position and because we thought the space was there that Granit could use, which it was. That move was forced by an injury to Kieran Tierney, while Thomas Partey's absence from midfield adds to Arteta's woes. With Chelsea, Manchester United and West Ham set to play in three of their next four games, Arsenal still have work to do to secure a Champions League spot after seeking favorites to finish among the top a few weeks ago four to come. Speaking about the task ahead, Arteta said: "With all the team available, we knew how difficult the challenge was. What happened today is down to us, the players we have and the way we prepared the game . We criticize ourselves a lot because we deserve it." to [lose] because we were really bad in the first half and lift ourselves up. "We know this path isn't taking us anywhere, especially where we want to be. We've got everything going in the last eight games. We have to have that level of energy and imagine the beautiful challenge that's ahead, lean in not back and let's see what happens. expected return to the Champions League. Monday night's defeat to Crystal Palace was a bad one. It was their worst performance since the first few weeks of the season. The response that what Arsenal fans saw on Saturday would have alarmed them. While Brighton didn't bring the same frantic style of pressing to the Emirates that Palace displayed at Selhurst Park, Arsenal were still slow out of the blocks, sloppy possession and incoherent in attack, with the forced reshuffle caused by the absence of Thomas Partey Nuno Tavares' form didn't work, Gabriel Martinelli failed Just before half-time they were narrowly placed offside to equalize what would have been tough for Brighton until Martin Odegaard made it 2-1 in the 89th minute that Arsenal showed the intensity required. With injuries, fixtures and total points now counting against them, Arsenal have everything they need if they are to overtake neighbors Tottenham in the contention for fourth place. As summer approaches, they can look back on this week as the moment their encouraging season came to an end.

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Knotweed entangles Man Utd again? Arsenal top 4 offer over?

Plus: Tottenham Strikeforce on song; Chelsea corrected some stylistic errors in Southampton; Anthony Gordon embodies the spirit of Everton; Leeds momentum under Marsch picks up pace as Watford hopes of survival continue to dwindle (Author: Gardener)

4This high-stakes clash was the polar opposite of this weekend's encounter between Liverpool and Manchester's other club. Man City vs Liverpool is a meeting of two of the game's greatest thinkers, a masterpiece between the league's champions in a class of their own. By contrast, Goodison Park hosted a Festival of the Damned, which featured two clubs in dire need of a reset. It was three years ago this month when they delivered arguably their best performance of the Farhad Moshiri era against Manchester United, beating them 4-0 to provoke a memorable rebuke from Gary Neville. A fifth consecutive away defeat for the first time since 1981 would help prevent them from qualifying for the Champions League. "I've said many times over the past seven years that weeds need to be removed over the past seven years," Neville said. “But there is a Japanese knotweed in this football club that is attacking the foundations of the house. So much has changed and yet so much has remained the same with United who look no closer to contending for the big prizes 64 minutes: Marcus Rashford attempted more shots on target (3) and had more touches in the opponent's box (6) than every other player in the game - small consolation for the angry fans who had traveled there but the striker looks a bit more like him The old self is a small consolation to take to Manchester with Rangnick. Just a few weeks ago it felt like as if Arsenal were favorites for fourth place and the long-awaited return to the Champions League. But in the space after six days, their hopes of a return to Europe's top club competition have suffered a major blow. Losing to Crystal Palace on Monday night was a tough one. Arsenal, bullied and hounded by their London rivals, never got off the ground and made costly mistakes. It was their worst performance since the first few weeks of the season. The response Arsenal fans saw on Saturday would have alarmed them. While Brighton didn't bring the same frantic style of pressing to the Emirates that Palace displayed at Selhurst Park, Arsenal were still slow out of the blocks, sloppy possession and disjointed in attack, with the forced re-teaming brought about by Thomas Partey's absence and Nuno The Tavares form is not working. Gabriel Martinelli was denied an equalizer by a minor offside just before half-time but that would have been tough for Brighton. Arsenal worked with the ball and lacked momentum or a clear approach, as Mikel Arteta later conceded. Only when Martin Ödegaard made it 2-1 in the 89th minute did Arsenal show the necessary intensity. Twice this week Arsenal have missed chances to finish fourth. With injuries, games and points now counting against them, Arsenal have everything they need if they are to overtake neighbors Tottenham now. As summer approaches, they can look back on this week as the moment their encouraging season came to an end. Heung-Min Son has now scored 17 Premier League goals this season and in this form could rival Mohamed Salah for the golden boot. That link with Harry Kane looks as deadly as ever, with the England captain's assist for the third goal underscoring his extraordinary vision. But maybe it's time to talk about how this is a magical trio at Tottenham and a perfect partnership. Dejan Kulusevski sped through to score with another Kane assist and then became Son's fourth goal. There's not much that Kane and Son were missing, but he added. A natural left-footer, he knows when to slow down and speed up the game and that calm in the final third sets him apart from the other contenders for that third position in Tottenham's attack. The return of Gareth Bale, on loan from Real Madrid last season, had briefly hinted at a dream team of a forward line - and the Welshman was scoring goals. This time it looks like it could be enough to put Spurs in the Champions League. Within 21 minutes at St Mary's, Chelsea had provided the needed response after back-to-back defeats. Marcos Alonso, Mason Mount and Timo Werner had all struck out to quickly assuage any concerns after being stunned 4-1 by Brentford a week ago and then humiliated 3-1 at home by Real Madrid. Thomas Tuchel has made four changes after losing the first leg of the Champions League quarter-finals, with Mateo Kovacic, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Timo Werner and Marcos Alonso all being called up to the team. When Chelsea quickly regained the ball, they were able to immediately counterattack and take advantage of the space behind the Southampton defence. The Blues were so good at pushing the Saints' midfield that the struggling Oriol Romeu was on the hook after just 35 minutes after being thoroughly overrun. Kovacic and Ngolo Kante exerted relentless pressure while Loftus-Cheek, despite being out of position at right-back, played a crucial role in Chelsea's physicality but also in attack by being involved in two goals. Alonso also delivered the important opener with trademark arrival in the box. Then there was Werner, who showed his value after being benched against Madrid with two goals from enough chances to score five, which didn't matter in the end as Chelsea found their sting again. Everton don't know how to win, according to Sean Dyche, but they've found a way despite Manchester United's efforts to remain calm. This is a poor United side and this pathetic display, led by the anonymous Cristiano Ronaldo, has revealed the magnitude of the task that Erik ten Hag faces if he is appointed. But the day and this opportunity revolved around Everton. Richarlison, the indefatigable Brazilian, embodied Frank Lampard's call for energy and fight for the cause in response to the second-half surrender at Burnley. It was a Herculean effort from all the Blues, from Alex Iwobi and Fabián Delph – the unlikely pair – in midfield and of course from Gordon, who has the footballing world at his feet. Jordan Pickford wasn't a bystander and did his part to deny Marcus Rashford and then Ronaldo twice in stoppage time. It was a back-to-the-wall performance from Everton, another turn on the ground and another turn of the knife in United's Champions League hopes. "I have to give the guys a lot of credit here as they lost twice in one week," said Frank Lampard. "Playing again on Saturday morning against a team that's fresh and full of quality was excellent. It was connected to the fans, it's good here since I've been here, that doesn't come naturally. The players made an effort. It is always a team effort and Jordan made two big saves in the first half and one outstanding one at the end. Jordan is England's No 1 for a reason and he absolutely showed it today." “We know it's in our hands, regardless of the others, to stay in the league. Some people around me calculated how many points or wins we still need, but I don't focus on that. We just have to keep going this." The spirit of the blues is playing out and they've never shown so much spirit this season. "He's a class," said Jamie Carragher of Bruno Guimaraes after beating in the 1-0 win by Newcastle against Wolves on Friday Night Football. The more the Brazilian plays, the more there is to admire about him. In his first home Premier League start for the Magpies since winning for £40million in January Pounds came from Lyon, the midfielder beamed from the first minute at the St. The 24-year-old's exquisite back-heel volley against Southampton last month showed he has world-class qualities and proved once again why Newcastle were adding them to theirs to date most expensive signing under new ownership, making 37 of 41 passes, winning seven balls and tackling four, it was a dominant performance against a Wolves side who still had an outside chance f qualifying for next season's Champions League came into play. Newcastle boss Eddie Howe told Sky Sports Guimaraes gives his side "another dimension". Despite last weekend's 5-1 defeat at Tottenham, Newcastle have transformed under Howe and are now 10 points clear of the relegation zone. They will almost certainly be the first team to avoid relegation after failing to win any of their first 14 games. Guimaraes will certainly play a leading role. Bruno Lage described Wolves' 1-0 defeat by Newcastle on Friday Night Football as a missed opportunity for his side in their foray into European football and it's hard to disagree. It was a miserable first-half performance which Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher says could only get better after the break, but there was minimal improvement in the second 45 minutes. Wolves' approach of sitting back and soaking up the Newcastle pressure worked for much of the first half but they offered nothing up front and failed to find a shot on goal until the 81st minute. The absence of Ruben Neves and Leander Dendoncker was painfully felt in midfield with teenager Luke Cundle, making only his second Premier League start and struggling to get a grip on the game as Newcastle's £40m New signing Bruno Guimaraes raged in January. It's another case of what if for Wolves fans, who will wonder why their team isn't at the St. albeit for the moment. Roy Hodgson's assessment of Watford's hopes of survival following their recent setback by Leeds was not sugarcoated. "We have no reason to be optimistic," said the former England manager after watching his side suffer their ninth consecutive Premier League defeat at Vicarage Road. The Hornets became the first Premier League side in a decade to set that unwanted record. The last team to do so, Wolves, were relegated and it's becoming increasingly difficult to see how Hodgson can turn things around and avoid relegation to the top flight for the first time in his illustrious career. As Watford become less likely to pull themselves out of the mess they find themselves in, so does the likelihood of Leeds giving up the healthy position they have fought their way into under Jesse Marsch. Three wins from four unbeaten matches have changed the fortunes of the Yorkshire club, which once stared at the plight now engulfing Watford. Such fears now look incredibly misguided as marching has certainly propelled Leeds to yet another Premier League season.

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Knotweed entangles Man Utd again? Arsenal top 4 offer over?

Plus: Tottenham Strikeforce on song; Chelsea corrected some stylistic errors in Southampton; Anthony Gordon embodies the spirit of Everton; Leeds momentum under Marsch picks up pace as Watford hopes of survival continue to dwindle (Author: Gardener)

4This high-stakes clash was the polar opposite of this weekend's encounter between Liverpool and Manchester's other club. Man City vs Liverpool is a meeting of two of the game's greatest thinkers, a masterpiece between the league's champions in a class of their own. By contrast, Goodison Park hosted a Festival of the Damned, which featured two clubs in dire need of a reset. It was three years ago this month when they delivered arguably their best performance of the Farhad Moshiri era against Manchester United, beating them 4-0 to provoke a memorable rebuke from Gary Neville. A fifth consecutive away defeat for the first time since 1981 would help prevent them from qualifying for the Champions League. "I've said many times over the past seven years that weeds need to be removed over the past seven years," Neville said. “But there is a Japanese knotweed in this football club that is attacking the foundations of the house. So much has changed and yet so much has remained the same with United who look no closer to contending for the big prizes 64 minutes: Marcus Rashford attempted more shots on target (3) and had more touches in the opponent's box (6) than every other player in the game - small consolation for the angry fans who had traveled there but the striker looks a bit more like him The old self is a small consolation to take to Manchester with Rangnick. Just a few weeks ago it felt like as if Arsenal were favorites for fourth place and the long-awaited return to the Champions League. But in the space after six days, their hopes of a return to Europe's top club competition have suffered a major blow. Losing to Crystal Palace on Monday night was a tough one. Arsenal, bullied and hounded by their London rivals, never got off the ground and made costly mistakes. It was their worst performance since the first few weeks of the season. The response Arsenal fans saw on Saturday would have alarmed them. While Brighton didn't bring the same frantic style of pressing to the Emirates that Palace displayed at Selhurst Park, Arsenal were still slow out of the blocks, sloppy possession and disjointed in attack, with the forced re-teaming brought about by Thomas Partey's absence and Nuno The Tavares form is not working. Gabriel Martinelli was denied an equalizer by a minor offside just before half-time but that would have been tough for Brighton. Arsenal worked with the ball and lacked momentum or a clear approach, as Mikel Arteta later conceded. Only when Martin Ödegaard made it 2-1 in the 89th minute did Arsenal show the necessary intensity. Twice this week Arsenal have missed chances to finish fourth. With injuries, games and points now counting against them, Arsenal have everything they need if they are to overtake neighbors Tottenham now. As summer approaches, they can look back on this week as the moment their encouraging season came to an end. Heung-Min Son has now scored 17 Premier League goals this season and in this form could rival Mohamed Salah for the golden boot. That link with Harry Kane looks as deadly as ever, with the England captain's assist for the third goal underscoring his extraordinary vision. But maybe it's time to talk about how this is a magical trio at Tottenham and a perfect partnership. Dejan Kulusevski sped through to score with another Kane assist and then became Son's fourth goal. There's not much that Kane and Son were missing, but he added. A natural left-footer, he knows when to slow down and speed up the game and that calm in the final third sets him apart from the other contenders for that third position in Tottenham's attack. The return of Gareth Bale, on loan from Real Madrid last season, had briefly hinted at a dream team of a forward line - and the Welshman was scoring goals. This time it looks like it could be enough to put Spurs in the Champions League. Within 21 minutes at St Mary's, Chelsea had provided the needed response after back-to-back defeats. Marcos Alonso, Mason Mount and Timo Werner had all struck out to quickly assuage any concerns after being stunned 4-1 by Brentford a week ago and then humiliated 3-1 at home by Real Madrid. Thomas Tuchel has made four changes after losing the first leg of the Champions League quarter-finals, with Mateo Kovacic, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Timo Werner and Marcos Alonso all being called up to the team. When Chelsea quickly regained the ball, they were able to immediately counterattack and take advantage of the space behind the Southampton defence. The Blues were so good at pushing the Saints' midfield that the struggling Oriol Romeu was on the hook after just 35 minutes after being thoroughly overrun. Kovacic and Ngolo Kante exerted relentless pressure while Loftus-Cheek, despite being out of position at right-back, played a crucial role in Chelsea's physicality but also in attack by being involved in two goals. Alonso also delivered the important opener with trademark arrival in the box. Then there was Werner, who showed his value after being benched against Madrid with two goals from enough chances to score five, which didn't matter in the end as Chelsea found their sting again. Everton don't know how to win, according to Sean Dyche, but they've found a way despite Manchester United's efforts to remain calm. This is a poor United side and this pathetic display, led by the anonymous Cristiano Ronaldo, has revealed the magnitude of the task that Erik ten Hag faces if he is appointed. But the day and this opportunity revolved around Everton. Richarlison, the indefatigable Brazilian, embodied Frank Lampard's call for energy and fight for the cause in response to the second-half surrender at Burnley. It was a Herculean effort from all the Blues, from Alex Iwobi and Fabián Delph – the unlikely pair – in midfield and of course from Gordon, who has the footballing world at his feet. Jordan Pickford wasn't a bystander and did his part to deny Marcus Rashford and then Ronaldo twice in stoppage time. It was a back-to-the-wall performance from Everton, another turn on the ground and another turn of the knife in United's Champions League hopes. "I have to give the guys a lot of credit here as they lost twice in one week," said Frank Lampard. "Playing again on Saturday morning against a team that's fresh and full of quality was excellent. It was connected to the fans, it's good here since I've been here, that doesn't come naturally. The players made an effort. It is always a team effort and Jordan made two big saves in the first half and one outstanding one at the end. Jordan is England's No 1 for a reason and he absolutely showed it today." “We know it's in our hands, regardless of the others, to stay in the league. Some people around me calculated how many points or wins we still need, but I don't focus on that. We just have to keep going this." The spirit of the blues is playing out and they've never shown so much spirit this season. "He's a class," said Jamie Carragher of Bruno Guimaraes after beating in the 1-0 win by Newcastle against Wolves on Friday Night Football. The more the Brazilian plays, the more there is to admire about him. In his first home Premier League start for the Magpies since winning for £40million in January Pounds came from Lyon, the midfielder beamed from the first minute at the St. The 24-year-old's exquisite back-heel volley against Southampton last month showed he has world-class qualities and proved once again why Newcastle were adding them to theirs to date most expensive signing under new ownership, making 37 of 41 passes, winning seven balls and tackling four, it was a dominant performance against a Wolves side who still had an outside chance f qualifying for next season's Champions League came into play. Newcastle boss Eddie Howe told Sky Sports Guimaraes gives his side "another dimension". Despite last weekend's 5-1 defeat at Tottenham, Newcastle have transformed under Howe and are now 10 points clear of the relegation zone. They will almost certainly be the first team to avoid relegation after failing to win any of their first 14 games. Guimaraes will certainly play a leading role. Bruno Lage described Wolves' 1-0 defeat by Newcastle on Friday Night Football as a missed opportunity for his side in their foray into European football and it's hard to disagree. It was a miserable first-half performance which Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher says could only get better after the break, but there was minimal improvement in the second 45 minutes. Wolves' approach of sitting back and soaking up the Newcastle pressure worked for much of the first half but they offered nothing up front and failed to find a shot on goal until the 81st minute. The absence of Ruben Neves and Leander Dendoncker was painfully felt in midfield with teenager Luke Cundle, making only his second Premier League start and struggling to get a grip on the game as Newcastle's £40m New signing Bruno Guimaraes raged in January. It's another case of what if for Wolves fans, who will wonder why their team isn't at the St. albeit for the moment. Roy Hodgson's assessment of Watford's hopes of survival following their recent setback by Leeds was not sugarcoated. "We have no reason to be optimistic," said the former England manager after watching his side suffer their ninth consecutive Premier League defeat at Vicarage Road. The Hornets became the first Premier League side in a decade to set that unwanted record. The last team to do so, Wolves, were relegated and it's becoming increasingly difficult to see how Hodgson can turn things around and avoid relegation to the top flight for the first time in his illustrious career. As Watford become less likely to pull themselves out of the mess they find themselves in, so does the likelihood of Leeds giving up the healthy position they have fought their way into under Jesse Marsch. Three wins from four unbeaten matches have changed the fortunes of the Yorkshire club, which once stared at the plight now engulfing Watford. Such fears now look incredibly misguided as marching has certainly propelled Leeds to yet another Premier League season.

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