Britain Soccer Premier League

Tottenham 0-1 Newcastle: Krul’s heroics continue Spurs struggles in front of goal

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Loic Remy put the visitors ahead early and Tim Krul made sure it stayed that way as the Magpies secured their second straight top-class win with a 1-0 defeat of Tottenham at White Hart Lane on Sunday.

Spurs took 29 shots on goal – 14 on target – but they couldn’t find the back of the net and sit on just nine goals scored so far this Premier League season thanks to Krul’s outstanding match.

The game began with both teams looking to find their attacking sense, and it was Spurs who did so first.

Andros Townsend worked well on the right wing early, and the 10th minute saw him combine with Christian Eriksen win a corner. Roberto Soldado subsequently found himself free on the set-piece for a header but put it just over.

Newcastle were playing with a view to the counter-attack, however, and a beautiful ball just a minute later from Yohan Cabaye sprung Loic Remy free and only a fabulous last-ditch tackle from Vlad Chiriches saved the day.

Remy would make amends and finish well in the 13th minute and give Newcastle the lead.  Yoan Gouffran stole the ball from Paulinhoat the mid-line and immediately slotted Remy through past the defense caught out on possession.  Remy one-two touched around Friedel and finished into the empty net.

The goal, just the sixth Spurs have conceded all season, didn’t change the home side’s early approach to the match despite their lack of goalscoring thus far into the season.  It was more of the same from Tottenham though, with lots of passing but no cutting edge or final ball.

Finally Spurs found a chance in the 30th minute, as Eriksen put in a great ball for Soldado and his header was brilliant, but Tim Krul’s save was better to deny the Spaniard despite the beaming sun in his eyes.

source: Reuters
Loic Remy, on loan from Queens Park Rangers, was the man on the scoresheet for Newcastle.

The home side continued to press for an equalizer as Paulinho fired off a shot in the 41st minute but Krul again saved well, the 25-year-old Dutch keeper in fine form.

Halftime brought two changes for Andre Villas-Boas, one via injury as Vlad Chiriches suffered a facial laceration and was replaced by Younes Kaboul.  AVB also tactically removed Moussa Dembele for Sandro.

It brought a new attacking sense for Tottenham, with Paulinho able to push further forward.  Unfortunately for the home side, Tim Krul outdid his first-half heroics with a pair of spectacular saves.

First in the 50th minute Eriksen was in front of goal at point-blank range but Krul saved well.  Then came the beauty, a 52nd minute free kick from Sigurdsson that took a crazy deflection off the wall, but Krul switched direction and brilliantly stopped the ball, and also saved a follow-up before Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa put the ball out.

Newcastle showed no threat of scoring a second, as the second half rolled on it was all about Tottenham equalizing or not.  They pushed, but between the lack of consistent creativity and Krul’s performance, it was not to be.  Paulinho had a chance in the 82nd minute but Krul was well-positioned, and Vergtonghen’s follow-up was saved low.

Shockingly for Newcastle, following their loss in the Tyne-Wear derby they now have not just wins over but also clean sheets against Chelsea and Tottenham in their last two matches, pushing them up to ninth in the table level with Manchester United on points.

For Spurs, they remain in sixth despite the opportunity to go third in the table with a win.

GOALS:

Newcastle – Remy 13′

LINEUPS:

Tottenham – Friedel; Walker, Vertonghen, Chiriches (Kaboul, 45′), Dawson; Paulinho, Dembele (Sandro, 45′); Townsend, Sigurdsson (Defoe, 69′), Eriksen; Soldado.

Newcastle – Krul; Williamson, Yanga-Mbiwa, Debuchy, Santon; Cabaye, Gouffran (Obertan, 85′), Sissoko, Tiote; Remy (Cisse, 75′), Shola Ameobi (Anita, 60′).

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.