Burnley 0-0 Manchester United: Sloppy Utd overshadows Di Maria debut (video)

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Angel Di Maria’s first half-hour of Premier League play was among the only exciting things to happen in Manchester United’s scoreless draw with Burnley on Saturday morning at Turf Moor.

The Argentine international thrilled but his teammates were sloppy and referee Chris Foy turned down multiple appeals for a penalty, as karma may’ve bitten Ashley Young.

Burnley has its first point in this Premier League stint, while United improves to just two points on the season through three games.

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Questions will certainly arrive regarding Louis van Gaal’s 3-5-2 for United, but it should be noted that only Di Maria featured of the club’s 4-5 summer transfers (depending if you count the reported impending move for Daley Blind).

The Premier League world got its first taste of what Angel Di Maria can do when he served an absolutely gorgeous 50-yard ball on a rope to a streaking Robin van Persie, only for the Dutchman to be stifled by Tom Heaton.

ADM then worked a combination down the left side that began with him head-flicking a ball backwards, then using the outside of his right boot for a flick that set up his own brilliant run down the wing. He was excellent.

It wasn’t all wine and roses for Di Maria, whose wayward touch outside his own 18 allowed David Jones to trouble David De Gea with a first touch rip.

One player who didn’t look world class was van Persie, who really struggled to turn the service he was receiving into danger for Burnley.

Which isn’t to say the Clarets didn’t attack, as Burnley had several good chances over the course of the first half. Scottish attacker Scott Arfield nutmegged Tyler Blackett before moving around Darren Fletcher and having a shot deflected out for a corner. An earlier free kick from Jones off the bar certainly gave United fans pause.

The second half was slow and plodding, especially as Di Maria’s legs got the best of him.

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Burnley fans get their first point in the PL

The danger returned for Manchester United in the final 15 minutes, and Rooney headed an Anderson corner wide in the 78th minute.

Antonio Valencia provided a good deal of danger to win corners for the visitors late, but his crosses were downright miserable.

Ashley Young should’ve won a PK for United in the 87th minute after his shot was handled in the 18, but referee Foy apparently wasn’t paying attention.

It’s probably fair to note that Di Maria is the only one of United’s four summer window signings to play against Burnley, as Marcos Rojo, Ander Herrera and Luke Shaw weren’t selected or available, and Daley Blind has yet to formalize his transfer from Ajax.

Lineups

Burnley: Heaton; Trippier, Duff, Shackell (c), Mee; Arfield, Jones, Marney, Taylor (Reid, 88′); Ings (Barnes, 79′), Jutkiewicz

Manchester United: De Gea, Jones, Evans, Blackett, Valencia (Januzaj, 87′), Young, Fletcher, Di Maria (Anderson, 70′), Mata, Rooney, van Persie (Welbeck, 73′)

Moore takes hold of West Brom’s promotion bid

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Darren Moore‘s spell as West Brom caretaker manager couldn’t quite pull off a miraculous run to Premier League safety, but the promise it contained has helped him to the first chance at earning promotion back to the top flight.

West Bromwich Albion announced Moore as its new manager on Monday, with the boss promising his Baggies would play attractive football while also being a side “that’s willing to fight and scrap for every ball.”

[ MORE: No World Cup for Chelsea trio ]

Moore is also happy to carry a flame for minority coaches — called BAME (Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic) — in England.

“If it does inspire others, I would be extremely proud,” he said. “I don’t just speak on behalf of BAME coaches but the young, aspiring British coaches across the board.”

Moore, 44, only lost one of his six PL matches as WBA boss, winning three times and inspiring many to wonder what would’ve happened had the Baggies’ pulled the plug on Alan Pardew — and Tony Pulis before him — earlier.

A center back in his playing career, Moore spent 18 seasons between a number of clubs including West Brom, Derby County, and Doncaster Rovers. He won promotion as a player twice with West Brom, and again with Derby.

Belgium goes to World Cup without Nainggolan

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BRUSSELS (AP) Belgium left midfielder Radja Nainggolan out of its World Cup squad despite a standout season with Champions League semifinalist Roma.

Belgium coach Roberto Martinez has long had a difficult relationship with the stormy midfielder. But after being called up for a warm-up game in March against Saudi Arabia, expectations had been that he would be on the 28-man roster announced Monday.

[ MORE: No World Cup for Chelsea trio ]

On top of the troubled relationship, Nainggolan was also the victim of the unparalleled wealth of talent the small nation has produced over the past few years.

Thibaut Courtois, Vincent Kompany, Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku were all named in the squad, which will be cut to 23 before the World Cup.

Nashville MLS expansion club snares ex-Liverpool CEO Ayre

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Former Liverpool CEO Ian Ayre is moving from Merseyside to the Music City.

The Tennesseean’s Joe Rexrode says Ayre is set to take the reins of Nashville SC as the first CEO in club history when it makes its debut in the 2020 MLS season.

[ MORE: No World Cup for Chelsea trio ]

Liverpool hired ex-EA Sports executive Peter Moore to replace Ayre in 2017 after the latter, 54, spent six years with the club as managing director and then CEO.

From the Tennessean:

“The MLS has huge ambitions to be one of the biggest and leading leagues in the world, and is on that trajectory,” Ayre said. “Both as a soccer fan and an executive in the industry, it’s something I’ve had my eye on because it’s important. … You talk about MLS and its growth, I think it’s becoming easier and will become easier to attract the right talent to something that’s exciting and developing. And if you have a reputation of being involved in a club like Liverpool, you hope that stands for something when you start to try and attract talent.”

The timing of Ayre’s addition hearkens back to that of former Tottenham executive Darren Eales at Atlanta United. If it has the same success, Nashville will be proud.

Report: Lampard interviews twice with Championship club

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Steven Gerrard‘s longtime England midfield mate Frank Lampard could soon be joining him in a management.

While Gerrard is tasked with rebuilding Rangers’ Scottish title push, Lampard’s reported new gig would entail leading Ipswich Town back to the Premier League for the first time since 2002.

[ MORE: No World Cup for Chelsea trio ]

Sky Sports says Lampard has already interviewed twice with Ipswich Town ownership in a bid to earn his first senior management gig.

Lampard, 39, played for Chelsea, Man City, New York City FC, West Ham United, and Swansea in a sparkling 20-year playing career.

Town finished 12th in the Championship, 15 points back of a playoff spot and 19 clear of relegation.