In the build-up to Saturday’s match between Stoke City and Arsenal, the Daily Mail has revealed that Gunners midfielder Aaron Ramsey has been warned of the hostile reception he’ll receive at the Britannia Stadium.
The threat has come from a Stoke fanzine called “The Oatcake” that features a picture of Ramsey celebrating his goal in last September’s 3-1 victory over the Potters and a headline that reads: “Okay Mr Ramsey. All bets are off.”
Inside the fanzine Ramsey is warned to expect a difficult time next time he travels to Stoke, saying: “By running directly over to the travelling Stoke fans pointing, smiling and giving us the ‘shush’ finger you seem more than happy for this stupid situation to continue to be drawn out.
“Next time you play at the Britannia Stadium, let’s have no whining and trying to take the moral high ground when you get the kind of reception your actions have inevitably guaranteed.”
The harsh words are sure to have Arsenal fans at a loss after the Britannia was the site where Ramsey suffered the horrific leg-break in February 2010. In a poor challenge from Ryan Shawcross, who was issued a straight red card, Ramey’s tibia and fibula were snapped requiring immediate surgery and ending his season. To his credit, the incident had Shawcross in tears and reports claim the center-back immediately sent Ramsey an apology and well-wishes in his recovery.
While the fanzine piece is likely the work of a few radical Stoke supporters looking to get a rise out of readers, Arsenal fans will no doubt view it as a class-less act. Perhaps they will have a laugh, however, by the lack of due diligence on the publisher’s part as Ramsey is unlikely to travel to Stoke as he recovers from a thigh strain.
Los Angeles FC selected five players in the MLS Expansion Draft, including Costa Rican national team star Marco Urena.
Whether they’ll make their way to the City of Angels is another story.
The first pick from general manager John Thorrington was goalkeeper Tyler Miller from Seattle Sounders.
[ MORE: Benitez on NUFC struggles ]
Going next was Latif Blessing from Sporting KC, an electric attacker who netted thrice with an assist last season.
Next was Urena from San Jose and the Costa Rican national team, a huge addition, and then Columbus left back Jukka Raitala before closing up the draft with Raheem Edwards from Toronto FC.
LAFC has already announced the signings or acquisitions of Carlos Vela, Walker Zimmerman, Carlos Alvarez, Monday Etim, and Guillermo Vizcarra.
The club will also loan Omar Gaber from Basel and Rodrigo Pacheco from Lanus.
Chelsea visits the John Smith’s Stadium to face Huddersfield Town in one of three Premier League fixtures this chilly Tuesday in December (Watch live at 3 p.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).
The Blues are now 14 points back of Manchester City, and three points clear of fifth place.
Meanwhile there are a pair of matches on NBC Sports Gold: Burnley looks to keep pace with its Top Four ambitions when it hosts struggling Stoke City, while in-form Crystal Palace seeks a home win that would move it out of the drop zone. In its way? Dangerous, attack-minded Watford.
Burnley vs. Stoke City — 2:45 p.m. ET [ STREAM ]
Huddersfield Town vs. Chelsea — 3 p.m. ET [ STREAM ]
Crystal Palace vs. Watford — 3 p.m. ET [ STREAM ]
ZURICH (AP) FIFA has banned Colombia midfielder Edwin Cardona for five matches for making a discriminatory gesture with his eyes toward a South Korean opponent.
FIFA will allow Cardona to serve the ban in friendly games, so he should be available for Colombia’s World Cup opener against Japan on June 19.
[ MORE: Pep on post-derby celebrations ]
Cardona has also been fined 20,000 Swiss francs ($20,150) because of the incident last month in a friendly in Seoul.
Cardona apologized at the time, saying he “didn’t mean to disrespect anyone, a country or a race, but if anyone felt offended, or interpreted it in that way, I am sorry.”
Spurs finally got a bit of good news this weekend with a blowout of Stoke City.
That was a followed by a tough draw against Juventus in the UEFA Champions League, and bad news on an old injury.
[ MORE: Benitez on NUFC struggles ]
Center back Toby Alderweireld is going to be gone into February, extending his time on the sidelines with a hamstring injury suffered Nov. 1 against Real Madrid.
Spurs were 6-2-2 in league when Alderweireld went down, and are just 2-2-2 since the injury. The Belgian has missed losses at Arsenal and Leicester, draws against Watford and West Brom, and wins over Crystal Palace and Stoke.
Tottenham did win both of its UCL matches since the injury.