David Moyes takes responsibility for ‘disappointing’ derby before walking out of press conference

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He didn’t go full Arsène Wenger and skip his press conference, but after Manchester United lost 3-0 in today’s Manchester Derby, manager David Moyes was in no mood to endure the post-match ritual. After briefly addressing the assembled press corps at Old Trafford, the embattled first-year boss walked out on questioning, providing few explanations for another disappointing performance.

The performance saw United fall 3-0 to its cross-town rivals, with City’s win at the Theater of Dreams vaulting Manuel Pellegrini’s side into second place. United sits seventh after its sixth home loss of the season, with 12 points separating the reigning champions from fourth place.

Wenger, whose team suffered a 6-0 loss at Chelsea, didn’t even show up for this spost-match session on Saturday. In the face of his own embarrassment, Moyes stopped short of matching his colleague, but as one reporter on the scene relayed via Twitter, the disappointed manager wasn’t long for today’s affairs in Stretford:


Given how quickly his team fell behind, you can understand Moyes’s frustration. In less than a minute, Edin Dzeko had put Manchester City in front, a lead the striker doubled 10 minutes after half time. Yaya Touré added a third late to give the Manchester’s blue side its lopsided result.

“We never came out of the blocks. You warm up the players, get them ready, but we just never started well enough,” Moyes said, one of the few answers he gave after the loss.

Perhaps Moyes feels his players’ early capitulation speaks for itself, but throughout what’s became a historically disappointing campaign, he still hasn’t answered the questions that puzzle Manchester United supporters week-in, week-out: Why is this team setting up they way it does? What’s the motivation behind the selection (choices that left Adnan Januzaj out of today’s game)? Why such a huge tactical shift from last year to this? In short, can you explain why the team has been so bad?

There may be good answers to all these questions, but at the beginning of the season, all we heard were platitudes along the lines of I thought we played better than the result. Now that the season is an obvious failure, United fans probably want those answers. And if there are none, at least let fans in on the thought process.

Supporters are past hoping this will turn around. Now, they just want some reason to believe things will change. He’s under no obligation to, but Moyes could give that to them, if he stuck around.

Premier League Preview: Chelsea vs. Watford

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  • Chelsea are without N'Golo Kante, Victor Moses (both hamstring) and Danny Drinkwater (calf) is still absent.
  • Watford remain without Younes Kaboul and Sebastian Prodl (both thigh), plus long-term absentees Craig Cathcart, Nathaniel Chalobah and Isaac Success (all knee).
  • Watford have not won against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge since 1986, but the Hornets have won 10 points of a possible 12 on the road. 
  • Chelsea have lost three of their first eight matches this season. No team has ever lost this many of their opening eight matches and still won the Premier League title.

Watford heads south for another London derby with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Saturday at 7:30 a.m. (Watch live on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

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The Hornets have had an amazing start to the season and currently occupy fourth place on 15 points, two points ahead of fifth-place Chelsea, which has lost two-straight Premier League games. The Blues have struggled without N’Golo Kante and Alvaro Morata and there have been reports of grumbles from the squad about dissatisfaction with Antonio Conte‘s training methods, but the Chelsea coach has brushed those rumors off.

Meanwhile Watford is coming off a confidence-boosting win last weekend against fellow Londoners Arsenal, and the club is looking to take down another big club for a second-straight week.

What they’re saying

Watford manager Marco Silva on his team’s start“I want everybody to be really calm. We did really in the first eight matches but it’s too early. We want to continue to work hard every day. Everything changes fast and you need to keep going and treat the next game as the most important. But of course I feel proud.”

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte on being under pressure: “‘Do I feel the pressure? Every manager feels pressure, but I try to give all of myself into my job, so I’m happy when I go home because I know in every moment I give all of myself for the fans, the players and the club. In football you know anything can happen, but the most important thing is to work.”

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Prediction

Chelsea has its back against the wall but the team’s overall quality should be enough to see them through with all three points against Watford. The Hornets luck runs out in Stamford Bridge as Chelsea hold on for a late win. Chelsea 2-1 Watford

Leicester City record massive earnings from UEFA Champions League

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Leicester City’s UEFA Champions League campaign may have ended without a trophy, but the Premier League side pipped the European champions in the bank account.

UEFA announced on Friday that Leicester City earned $96,167,125 during the Champions League run that ended in the quarterfinals, the farthest of any Premier League club. Real Madrid, the back-to-back champions, earned a slightly less $95,385,679. Much of the difference comes from TV rights deals in England, which pays out more to teams compared to the TV rights deal in Spain.

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Juventus, the Italian giant, earned the most of any club in last year’s Champions League, making a whopping $129,965,357, mostly thanks to the TV rights again.

Mourinho: Ibrahimovic could return in December

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Dare to Zlatan? It could be only a couple of months away.

That’s according to Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho, who said the veteran striker could return from his torn ACL before the end of the calendar year.

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“Zlatan is here, he’s working here and under our control,” Mourinho told reporters. “He’s working as you would expect so, so, so hard. But he’s not to be back in the next week or next couple of weeks. Do I believe he’ll be back in 2017? Yes, I do. But it’s just a feeling.”

The big Swede scored 28 goals for Man United last year in all competitions, proving that he’s still got it at the age of 36, but it’s going to be tough for him to find his old form coming off an ACL injury at such an old age. After suffering the injury last April, it’s been a long road to recovery for Ibrahimovic.

However, with the play of Romelu Lukaku up top, Ibrahimovic would only play from time to time, which could help in his recovery both from the knee injury and just the general recovery between games.

Manchester City quartet called up by Brazil for friendlies

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Brazilian National Team coach Tite has decided on calling up a full-strength squad for November’s upcoming friendly matches in Europe, including four Manchester City players in his 25-man squad.

Gabriel Jesus, Fernandinho, Danilo and Ederson all made the squad as Tite looks to develop more chemistry among his side ahead of the 2018 World Cup, which Brazil breezed into after Tite took over in 2016.

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Luckily for Manchester City and the other European-based players in the squad, Brazil’s friendly matches will be played in Western Europe. The Selecao first faces Japan in Lille, France on November 10 before taking on England at Wembley Stadium on November 14.

The call-ups may be a tough pill for Guardiola to swallow though. As of Friday, Manchester City has 17 games remaining in the calendar year, and surely he would prefer for some of his starters to get a two-week break in November to preserve some energy instead of play in friendly matches.