Manchester United could build a 12-point Premier League cushion vs. Everton today

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Everyone’s measuring tape may stretch a little differently when considering how far Manchester United needs to extend its lead over Manchester City to cinch off, wrap up and put a pretty bow around the Barclays English Premier League championship.

Most of us looked at last weeks’ results – United’s win at Fulham married with City’s draw at home to Liverpool – as the moment of truth.

If it was not, can we all pretty please agree that it’s coming today? It is with a successful day at Old Trafford, that is.

City’s loss to Southampton on Saturday set the stage. Sir Alex Ferguson’s men start the morning nine points clear of the only viable pursuer close enough to talk about. With all three points today against U.S. international Tim Howard and Everton, United will build a 12-point deficit that would need a historic collapse for undoing.

Yes, United was eight points clear last year with six matches remaining.

Still, consider the psychological impact of today’s contest at Old Trafford.

This is where it all began to unravel for Manchester United a little less than a year ago. It was in April (so, a bit later in the season) when Everton and United played to a sensational 4-4 draw.

This week, Ferguson warned such a thing will not happen again. What he told United Review:

If I had to pick out one single match where we lost our title it would have to be that game. What I can say is that it won’t happen again – or if it does, then put it this way, they will feel the full effect of the hairdryer.”

Yes. Egad! The fabled Ferguson hair dryer.

Today’s match kicks off at 10:30 a.m. ET on Fox Soccer Channel.

There’s also a schedule ahead to consider, one that sets up more favorably for United. And with Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie leading the way, goals a just a’ flyin’ in for United; Opta Sports tells us Ferguson’s men have scored two or more in 15 of their last 16 at Old Trafford.

VIDEO: Top Premier League goals – Week 6

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From Fabian Delph‘s curler to Alvaro Morata’s surging run and dink and from Philippe Coutinho‘s perfect free kick to Leroy Sane’s delicate touches.

Boy, did we have some fine strikes in the Premier League in Week 6.

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Click play on the video above to see the best of the bunch and let us know your favorite in the comments section below.

“What is your favorite?” I hear you cry. Settle down, settle down. I love a good curler which clips off the bar and in so I’m going with Delphy’s goal against Crystal Palace. Sublime.

PHOTO: New USMNT jersey for 2018 World Cup leaked?

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Now, of course, they have to qualify first.

But if Bruce Arena’s men do make the 2018 World Cup in Russia they could be wearing this beauty in the photo below.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights

With all leaked jerseys there is a real possibility it could turn out to look completely different but information from Conrad Burry of Sportslogos over the weekend suggested something along these lines.

Take a look at the photo below of the home jersey (the away jersey is said to be “Midnight Navy with a second color of Blue Nebula”) and let us know what you think.

Champions League score picks – Week 2

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The UEFA Champions League group stage kicks off Week 2 on Tuesday, so let’s have some fun and try to predict the scores.

[ MORE: Champions League schedule ]

Feel free to join in down in the comments section, as I’m predicting another unbeaten week for all five Premier League teams in action.

[ MORE: Group stage predictions ] 

Below you will find score predictions for all 16 UCL games across the next two days.


Tuesday

Group E
Sevilla 3-1 Maribor
Spartak Moscow 1-1 Liverpool

Group F
Man City 3-0 Shakhtar Donetsk
Napoli 3-1 Feyenoord

Group G
Besiktas 0-2 RB Leipzig
Monaco 2-1 FC Porto

Group H
Borussia Dortmund 1-3 Real Madrid
APOEL 0-3 Tottenham Hotspur

Wednesday

Group A
CSKA Moscow 1-2 Manchester United
Basel 0-2 Benfica

Group B
Paris Saint-Germain 2-2 Bayern Munich
Anderlecht 2-1 Celtic

Group C
Atletico Madrid 1-2 Chelsea
Qarabag 1-3 Roma

Group D
Sporting Lisbon 1-3 Barcelona
Juventus 2-1 Olympiacos

Court hearing opens into spectators attacking referees

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MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay (AP) Witnesses in Uruguay’s capital testified before a judge on Monday about an attack on two referees by spectators at a soccer match.

A male and a female referee were attacked on Saturday during a second division under-19 game between Basanez and Platense.

The next day, the Uruguay Football Association cancelled all organized football as referees protested the violence by refusing to officiate. Officials are expected to meet on Wednesday to decide if they will lift the stoppage.

Witnesses told Judge Julia Staricco it started after a kid threw rocks on the field with encouragement from his father. The female referee’s partner asked the kid to stop, leading to an argument with other spectators who punched and kicked the referees.

An attorney representing the country’s referees union, Fernando de Los Santos, says the officials suffered bruises to their bodies.

“There are several people responsible here: The players, especially who are all young in the under-19 category; their parents, and their families,” de Los Santos said.

“This is not new. We’ve seen this kind of violence in the lower divisions. But this is the straw that broke the camel’s back.”

The Basanez and Platense clubs have issued statements condemning the violence. Basanez also said it fired one of its players who was part of the attack.

The case is being handled by the same local judge who recently charged three people for violent acts during the Penarol-Nacional derby.