Ever since Queens Park Rangers were assured of relegation following their 0-0 draw with Reading last week, owner Tony Fernandes has been looking for others to bear the brunt of the blame for their failed season.
It appeared Fernandes had selected former manager Neil Warnock as his scapegoat du jour, and despite later clarifying that he never meant to blame his former conductor for their misfortune this season, the damage had been done.
Yesterday, many believed the owner was hitting out at Warnock for his failed deals at the beginning of the season. Fernandes was quoted by The Mirror as saying, “At the time when we arrived (in the Premier League), we were offered a lot of players, many on free transfers. We questioned a few of these and it wouldn’t be fair for me to name names, but we weren’t long in the business and we deferred to the footballing side of the business.”
Fernandes was most likely referring to the high-wage additions of Shawn Wright-Phillips, Joey Barton, Armond Traore, Anton Ferdinand, and Luke Young all in the final stages of the 2011 summer transfer window under the direction of Warnock. Fernandes later fired Warnock in January of 2012.
Fernandes, also the owner of Air Asia, attempted to clarify his statements today saying he never meant to blame Warnock for starting QPR’s slide, but it was too late in the former boss’s mind. Warnock fired back, saying, “Tony Fernandes came in with no experience. They brought in Phil Beard with no experience either and Mark Hughes brought in Mike Rigg. There’s nobody in between the ownership and the manager. When things go wrong, everybody starts throwing things and unfortunately it’s my turn to be hit now.”
Round two of the UEFA Champions League is back on Tuesday, and while clubs cannot book their place in the Round of 16 just yet it’s just as easy for them to put themselves out of contention.
Three Premier League sides will be action on the afternoon, including Tottenham — who has the chance to start Group H play with six points.
Meanwhile, Liverpool and Manchester City will also take the pitch in Group E and F, respectively.
The day’s biggest clash of the day though comes in Germany as Borussia Dortmund and Real Madrid meet in the other Group H fixture. Dortmund will be looking for a positive result after falling to Spurs in their opening day loss in the competition.
[ MORE: Who is the most complete striker in the Premier League? ]
Here’s the full rundown of matches on Tuesday’s UCL docket.
All games kick off at 2:45 p.m. ET
Spartak Moscow vs. Liverpool
Sevilla vs. Maribor
Manchester City vs. Shakhtar Donetsk
Napoli vs. Feyenoord
Besiktas vs. Red Bull Leipzig
Monaco vs. Porto
Borussia Dortmund vs. Real Madrid
APOEL vs. Tottenham Hotspur
The New Orleans Saints will be playing a different sort of football on Sunday at historic Wembley Stadium, but the NFL franchise took in Arsenal’s match today during their trip to London.
[ MORE: PL playback — Who is the most complete striker in the PL? ]
Super Bowl-winning quarterback Drew Brees posted a picture on Instagram with several of his Saints teammates taking in the Arsenal-West Brom fixture at the Emirates Stadium six days before the NFL team plays the Miami Dolphins.
The Saints-Dolphins matchup is the second NFL game to take place in England thus far in 2017, after the Jacksonville Jaguars defeated the Baltimore Ravens, 44-7, on Sunday at Wembley.
Robbie Earle and Robbie Mustoe react to Arsenal’s 2-0 win over West Brom, Brighton’s 1-0 victory against Newcastle and get into a deep discussion over the plethora of strikers in the Premier League.
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This isn’t what Atlanta United wanted to see right before the playoffs, but the club will be praying that it gets one of its biggest stars back in time for the MLS postseason.
[ MORE: Trio of USWNT players stay in locker room for national anthem ]
Miguel Almiron has been ruled out at least three weeks after suffering a hamstring injury during Sunday’s 2-0 win over the Montreal Impact.
Given the projected three-week timetable, Almiron could return for the team’s final two matches of the regular season against the New York Red Bulls and Toronto FC.
Meanwhile, Almiron will also likely miss out on Paraguay’s two final CONMEBOL World Cup qualifiers, which is a devastating blow for the country’s qualification chances. Paraguay currently sits three points behind fifth-place Argentina in South American qualifying.
In his first season in MLS, Almiron has taken the league by storm after scoring nine goals and adding 13 assists. Additionally, the 23-year-old has three game-winning goals for the expansion side, who currently sits third in the Eastern Conference.