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Sunderland 2-1 Newcastle: Fabio Borini late winner lifts Sunderland in tantalizing Tyne-Wear derby (video)

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Fabio Borini netted the winner in the 85th minute as Sunderland finally gave their home fans something to cheer about with a 2-1 victory over Newcastle United in the Tyne-Wear derby.

The match was an exciting one, with both sides giving 110% effort.  The effects showed late in the match with tired legs and exhaustion abound, but Sunderland dug deep for their first home points of the season and a lift off the bottom of the Premier League table.

The game had a ferocious start, with both teams fittingly after each other harshly in the opening minutes.

Steven Fletcher opened the scoring in just the fifth minute.  With the Englishman starting alongside American Jozy Altidore for just the second time this season, Altidore won a corner with good work by the flag, and Fletcher nodded home a back-post cross home with his head off the set-piece.

Fletcher outjumped Paul Dummett, the defender who was making his first career Premier League start and labeled this the biggest game of his life.

The goal didn’t change the exciting feel to the match, as both teams continued to press hard and play physical.

Fletcher nearly had a second in the 16th minute, with a bouncing shot forcing Tim Krul into a diving save, and Altidore couldn’t outmuscle Dummett for possession of the rebound.

Rain began to fall in the 23rd minute bringing strong winds with them, making physical play even more intense and challenges clumsier.

source: Getty Images
Gus Poyet’s introduction of Fabio Borini immediately injected fresh legs and an added attack to Sunderland and provided the match-winner.

The physical battle continued up to halftime and even after, and both teams failed to get real spells on goal until Newcastle found their equalizer in the 57th minute.

Hatem Ben Arfa on the ball found himself double-teamed at the top corner of the box, but he threaded a brilliant ball through the double-team of Sebastian Larsson and Phil Bardsley.  The ball traveled past the pack and to Mathieu Debuchy, who had snuck past everyone, including his marker Adam Johnson, and slotted easily past Kieran Westwood.

Ten minutes later, Fabio Borini made his way off the bench for Sunderland, replacing Adam Johnson, and he immediately made an impact.  Borini got the ball streaking towards the 18-yard box corner, and his defender Debuchy slipped, allowing Borini to fire off a shot which Tim Krul nearly spilled but collected in time.

Sunderland had a promising spell of attacking play in the 81st minute when Altidore won a free kick at the top of the penalty area.  Altidore stood over it initially, but in the end it was either Fletcher or Larsson who decided to take the kick. Fletcher put his boot to it but put it into the wall.

The Stadium of Light got their moment three minutes later when Jack Colback found himself on the break.  He found Altidore, who caught the defense off guard with a perfect layoff for Borini.  The give provided the Italian with just enough space to rifle off a shot, which found its mark – the top right corner.

The win brings Sunderland off the bottom of the table past Crystal Palace to 19th place.  It’s Gus Poyet’s first win as Sunderland manager, and its the first win of the season for the Black Cats.

GOALS:

Sunderland – Fletcher 5′, Borini 84′
Newcastle – Debuchy 57′

LINEUPS:

Sunderland – Westwood; Bardsley (Celustka, 77′), Dossena, O’Shea, Cuellar; Cattermole (Ki, 70′), Colback, Larsson, Johnson (Borini, 69′); Altidore, Fletcher.

Newcastle – Krul; Debuchy, Williamson, Dummett, Santon; Sissoko (Cisse, 45′), Tiote, Cabaye; Gouffran (Sammy Ameobi, 86′), Ben Arfa, Remy (Shola Ameobi, 70′).

Bayern’s Vidal says “ugly” Atletico not deserved UCL finalists

MADRID, SPAIN - APRIL 27: Juanfran of Atletico Madrid and Arturo Vidal of Bayern Munich argue during the UEFA Champions League semi final first leg match between Club Atletico de Madrid and FC Bayern Muenchen at Vincente Calderon on April 27, 2016 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
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Bayern Munich midfielder Arturo Vidal has declared “ugly” Atletico Madrid unworthy finalists in the UEFA Champions League.

Bayern was eliminated in the Champions League semifinal by Atleti on Tuesday, with Diego Simeone’s Spanish side advancing on away goals.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s UCL coverage ]

However, Vidal believed Bayern were the better team in the second leg, saying Atletico played “ugly football” to get through.

Today ugly football – Atletico – played against the best football in the world. The only time they saw the ball was for the goal.

They are going to be dreaming about us right up to the final. They did not have the ball, they took on the best team in the world, they took their chances and got to the final.

The best does not always win in football, like today. They are not deserved finalists.

Bayern Munich controlled more than 70-percent of possession and had 33 shots compared to Atletico’s nine, but those stats mean little as Antoine Griezmann’s away goal was enough to send Atleti to the final.

[ MORE: Former England striker Joe Cole headed to NASL’s Tampa Bay Rowdies ]

Atletico may not play the most attractive football, but after eliminating Barcelona and Bayern Munich in consecutive legs, it’s hard to argue anyone deserves this more than Simeone’s men.

Europa League preview: Liverpool, Shakhtar look to overcome Spanish foes

VILLARREAL, SPAIN - APRIL 28:  Cedric Bakambu of Villarreal is watched by the Liverpool defence during the UEFA Europa League semi final first leg match between Villarreal CF and Liverpool at Estadio El Madrigal on April 28, 2016 in Villarreal, Spain.  (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
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The second leg of the Europa League semifinals kick off tomorrow, with two La Liga sides looking to make it an all-Spanish final.

[ MORE: Premier League Playback ]

Villarreal holds a 1-0 lead over Liverpool, while Sevilla scored two away goals in their 2-2 draw at Shakhtar Donetsk.

Liverpool vs. Villarreal – 3:05 p.m. ET
Villarreal won first leg 1-0

Adrian Lopez’s late winner in the first leg has given Villarreal a slight lead, while the Spanish side did well not to concede an away goal. However, Liverpool have overcome deficits at Anfield before, including their memorable 4-3 victory over Borussia Dortmund in the quarterfinals. Emre Can is back fit for the Reds, as manager Jurgen Klopp will hope his fellow German can help the team to a cup final in his first year in charge.

[ RELATED: Liverpool preparing for another big Thursday night at Anfield ]

Sevilla vs. Shakhtar Donetsk – 3:05 p.m. ET
First leg ended 2-2 draw 

Sevilla are looking to become the first team to win three consecutive Europa League titles as the two-time defending champions face off against Shakhtar Donetsk. Sevilla are in the driver’s seat after scoring two away goals in Ukraine, and will feel confident of advancing to the final with a great home record at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium.

Men in Blazers podcast: Celebrating Leicester’s title with Arlo White

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In the latest Men in Blazers podcast, Rog and Davo celebrate Leicester City’s improbable Premier League title with Leicester’s own Arlo White.

All of the MiB content — pods, videos and stories can be seen here, but to really stay in touch, follow, subscribe, click here:

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European police say Russian mafia infiltrating soccer clubs

LISBON, PORTUGAL - NOVEMBER 04:  Sporting Lisbon fans celebrate after their team score a goal during the Portuguese Liga match between Sporting Lisbon and Uniao Leiria at the Alvalade XXI Stadium on November 4, 2005 in Lisbon, Portugal.  (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
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LISBON, Portugal (AP) Portuguese and European police say they have broken up a cell of an important Russian mafia group that allegedly laundered money through European football clubs.

Europol, the European Union’s law enforcement agency, said in a statement Wednesday the group identified EU football clubs in financial distress and infiltrated them with benefactors who brought much-needed cash.

[ MORE: Man City bounced from UCL ]

Once they were in control, the mobsters allegedly laundered millions of euros (dollars) through player transfers, TV rights deals and betting.

Portuguese and European police on Tuesday raided third-division Portuguese club Uniao de Leiria and arrested three key members of the Russian gang. Three other Portuguese clubs’ premises were searched.

Europol said the operation helped identify serious crimes in Austria, Germany, and the United Kingdom, though it gave no details.