League Cup Roundup: QPR and Aston Villa crash out

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One day after MK Dons’ 4-0 mauling of Manchester United two more Premier League clubs, Queens Park Rangers and Aston Villa, crashed out of the League Cup to sides from the Football League.

Sunderland and Stoke City enjoyed better fortunes and were subsequently included in the Third Round draw conducted after the Second Round matches concluded.

The Potters and Black Cats were matched up for a clash at the Stadium of Light while other fixtures involving Premier League clubs will see Chelsea play Bolton Wanderers, Arsenal host Southampton, West Bromwich Albion take on Hull City, Crystal Palace face Newcastle United, Liverpool match up with Middlesbrough, Manchester City take on Sheffield Wednesday, Swansea City meet Everton and Tottenham Hotspur host Nottingham Forest.

Third Round matches are set to be played the week commencing September 22nd. For all the results from the Second Round of the League Cup, see below.

Burton 1 Queens Park Rangers 0

League Two side Burton Albion found a 77th minute match-winner from Adam Kirk to send Queens Park Rangers crashing out of the League Cup.

Aston Villa 0 Leyton Orient 1

League Two club Leyton Orient went in to Villa Park and nabbed a 1-0 win after Romain Vincelot scored with just three minutes to play.

Stoke City 3 Portsmouth 0

A Jonathan Walters brace and a 90th minute strike from Peter Crouch gave Stoke City a comfortable 3-0 victory over Portsmouth.

Birmingham 0 Sunderland 3

Birmingham enjoyed 61% possession but it was all for naught as Jordi Gomez, Adam Johnson and Connor Wickham scored within a 13 minute span in the second half to see Sunderland advance to the Third Round of the Capital One Cup.

Bradford 2 Leeds 1

An 82nd minute goal from Matt Smith wasn’t enough to hold off Bradford who received an 84th minute strike from Billy Knott and a matchwinner two minutes later from James Hanson.

Second Round – Full Results

Port Vale 2-3 Cardiff City
Middlesbrough 3-1 Preston North End
Huddersfield Town 0-2 Nottingham Forest
Swansea City 1-0 Rotherham United
Watford 1-2 Doncaster Rovers
Millwall 0-2 Southampton
AFC Bournemouth 3-0 Northampton Town
Brentford 0-1 Fulham
Scunthorpe 0-1 Reading
Derby County 1-0 Charlton Athletic
West Ham United 1-1 (p.k., 4-5) Sheffield United
Swindon Town 2-3 (a.e.t) Brighton & Hove Albion
Leicester City 0-1 Shrewsbury Town
Crewe Alexandra 2-3 (a.e.t.) Bolton Wanderers
Gillingham 0-1 Newcastle United
Norwich City 2-1 Crawley Town
Nurley 0-1 Sheffield Wednesday
Walsall 0-3 Crystal Palace
West Bromwich Albion 1-1 Oxford United
Milton Keynes Dons 4-0 Manchester United
Birmingham 0-3 Sunderland
Bradford 2-1 Leeds
Burton 1-0 Queens Park Rangers
Stoke City 3-0 Portsmouth
Aston Villa 0-1 Leyton Orient

Third Round – Fixtures

Chelsea v Bolton Wanderers
Arsenal v Southampton
West Bromwich Albion v Hull City
Crystal Palace v Newcastle United
Leyton Orient v Sheffield United
Cardiff City v AFC Bournemouth
Sunderland v Stoke City
Derby County v Reading
Liverpool v Middlesbrough
Milton Keynes Dons v Bradford City
Manchester City v Sheffield Wednesday
Burton Albion v Brighton and Hove Albion
Swansea City v Everton
Shrewsbury Town v Norwich City
Fulham v Doncaster Rovers
Tottenham Hotspur v Nottingham Forest

Why PSG’s Alexis, Neymar pursuit fits in a (relatively) smart space

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Paris Saint-Germain’s run of four Ligue 1 titles ended last season, a campaign which also saw exciting league-winners Monaco go two rounds further into the UEFA Champions League.

Monaco looks set for a step back this season, with Bernardo Silva off to Man City and Tiemoue Bakayoko signing for Chelsea. Kylian Mbappe could join Monaco’s list of departures, and reports say Man City had a bid accepted for Benjamin Mendy.

[ EXCLUSIVE: Strootman talks Roma w/ PST ]

While Monaco is loading up on young talent again, PSG clearly sees its chance to surge back into the title seat and Les Parisiens may just make themselves European favorites as well if they can pry Alexis Sanchez from Arsenal and Neymar from Barcelona.

That would be a South American trident nearly as potent as the one Neymar current shares with Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi at Barcelona, and the Brazilian would not be second or third fiddle.

PSG has so far been relatively quiet this summer, with the addition of Dani Alves the lone new buy. Aside from money, how was Alves lured to Paris over Man City and a reunion with Pep Guardiola? The idea of a reunion with Neymar and several Brazilian mates — Marquinhos, Thiago Silva, Lucas Moura — may’ve been enough and surely that conversation would’ve happened between the two Barca stars.

The French side has to make a big chance at some point soon, unless they’ve been able to unload their money bags and actually buy a fountain of youth. Thiago Motta is 34, Blaise Matuidi 30, Silva 32, and Edinson Cavani 30.

It’s calculated aggression from PSG to splash cash in hopes of rivaling Real Madrid, Juventus, and Barca in pursuit of the UCL title. The Neymar move weakens one of those rivals. If Marco Verratti isn’t part of a swap deal, the signings of Sanchez and Neymar would meet the Italian star’s ambitions well up the road.

De Boer: West Brom was out to injure Palace star Zaha

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No shrinking violet, new Crystal Palace boss Frank De Boer was left fuming at West Bromwich Albion players following the PL Asia Trophy third place match on Saturday in Hong Kong.

While the focus could’ve been on Luka Milivojevic‘s gorgeous free kick (watch here), De Boer couldn’t get past the hard fouls aimed at his key attacker.

[ EXCLUSIVE: Strootman talks Roma w/ PST ]

West Brom gave away the free kick that led to the aforementioned goal by chopping down Zaha, and the foul was not an isolated incident.

From the BBC:

“They were looking for him, to injure him,” said De Boer.

“He’s one of the exciting players in the league. I don’t want to think he’d be out for two weeks or months.”

De Boer is no stranger to rough play, so this is not coming from a soft place. We doubt it’s going to change anything from Tony Pulis‘ men, though.

Chelsea hammers Arsenal 3-0 in Beijing (video)

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Chelsea struck twice early and Michy Batshuayi put the cherry on top as the Premier League champions cruised past Arsenal 3-0 in Beijing on Saturday.

The Blues started a lineup they’d use on any occasion in the PL, while Arsenal had unproven prospects Cohen Bramall and Ainsley Maitland-Niles in the XI.

[ EXCLUSIVE: Strootman talks Roma w/ PST ]

Willian‘s quick goal put the Blues up 1-0 at the Bird’s Nest, and Batshuayi scored the second and third. Both were pretty classy, especially the second.

Marcos Alonso did the lion’s share of the work to produce the second chance for Batshuayi, who is threatening to carry over his fine late season form to this campaign. What a smash.

Coutinho rocket helps LFC to PL Asia Trophy (video)

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Goals from Mohamed Salah and Philippe Coutinho helped Liverpool come back from an early deficit to win the PL Asia Trophy on Saturday in Hong Kong.

Islam Slimani gave Leicester City an early lead in front of a heavy pro-Liverpool crowd at Hong Kong Stadium, but Coutinho delivered the goods on both goals in a 2-1 win.

The tournament win is Liverpool’s first in its second trip to the PL Asia Trophy Final.

[ EXCLUSIVE: Strootman talks Roma w/ PST ]

First he crossed for Salah to head home, and then he scored the above goal by cutting in from the left and lashing a shot past a flailing Kasper Schmeichel.

We’ve seen this one before from Coutinho, just not on this particular continent. The Brazilian remains a Barcelona target, but looks prepared for the season in whatever land he sets foot.