Wenger says Jack Wilshere has a “big ankle sprain”

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After seeing the video of Jack Wilshere’s ankle buckle grotesquely under a challenge from Manchester United defender Paddy McNair, nothing surprising here.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger confirmed that Jack Wilshere is suffering from a “big ankle sprain” and that he will see a specialist to determine the extent of the injury as well as how to proceed.

Wenger said Wilshere will be “out for a few games” but wouldn’t get into specifics because “I’m not a specialist medically.”

Paired with the video, it’s actually good news to Arsenal fans that – so far – no ligament damage has been reported or suspected. However, given the 22-year-old’s history with ankle problems, this could be a bigger problem than one would normally expect for a serious sprain.

He certainly won’t play today against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League, but with Arsenal just needing a draw in its final two matches to make the knockout rounds, the bigger concern will be the Premier League campaign. The Gunners have matches with second-place Southampton, rolling Newcastle, and Liverpool in the coming month, and with the club sitting in 8th position – two points behind a Champions League place, nine points behind second, and 15 back of the top – they need to make a move now.

Wilshere tried at first to carry on in the Manchester United match after the initial injury, but could not continue. Santi Cazorla replaced the injured midfielder in the 55th minute, but he looked erratic and at times made some puzzling decisions in his appearance.

Also out for today are goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny and winger Theo Walcott, while Olivier Giroud is ineligible and Laurent Koscielny is ready to return.

PST’s Big 2022-23 Premier League Awards post

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The 2022-23 Premier League season featured so many shocks that even an outcome predicted by many wound up feeling a bit like one.

VIDEO: Premier League highlights ] 

When it comes to the official Premier League awards dished out, Erling Haaland was named the Player of the Year and the Young Player of the Year awards. And rightly so. He set a new record for the most goals scored in a single Premier League season. Enough said.

Manchester City won its third-straight Premier League title after spending most of the season looking up at surprise package Arsenal, while almost everyone else had an unpredictable season.

Seriously, look at the table. Did you have Chelsea with the fourth-fewest goals in the league and the sixth-fewest wins? Did you have Tottenham entering the final week with Europe not assured? How about Liverpool needing a red-hot surge to likely finish fifth?

Did you have Newcastle, Brighton, and Brentford as season-long competitors for European places? How about Leicester City, West Ham, and Wolves as bottom-half for most of the campaign?

Twelve teams changed coaches at least once. The Premier League single-season goals record was smashed. Liverpool won games 7-0 (against Man Utd!) and 9-0 but lost by three or more goals thrice and twice went four matches without a win.

In other words, the Jim Halpert “What is going on?” gif was the unofficial sponsor of the 2022-23 season.

So who and what really were the best and worst parts of this wild and woolly season? Our lead writer Joe Prince-Wright was joined by Andy Edwards and Nick Mendola to pick everything from Best XI to Biggest Disappointment.


Goalkeeper of the Year

JPW: Nick Pope – Key man in Newcastle’s top four finish and made some stunning saves as the Magpies were so solid at the back.

Nick Mendola: Alisson Becker — Only Bernd Leno prevented more goals than the Liverpool backstop, and the Reds are currently more than 11 goals better than xGA.

Andy Edwards: David Raya


Defender of the Year

JPW: William Saliba – What a season from the French center back. Arsenal’s late-season collapse coincided with his injury and that tells you how important he is.

Nick Mendola: Saliba — Ruben Dias was the best part of the league’s best defense and Kieran Trippier a sexier pick, but Arsenal’s steep drop-off without Saliba says it all.

Andy Edwards: Kieran Trippier


Young Player (U23) of the Year

JPW: Bukayo Saka – Tore teams apart all season long and was unplayable at times. He and the other Arsenal youngsters are so in-sync.

Nick Mendola: Saka — Faded badly down the stretch but is still just 21 and reached double digits in goals and assists.

Andy Edwards: Bukayo Saka


Manager of the Year

JPW: Mikel Arteta – To go from 5th to 2nd is a huge leap and Arteta deserves huge praise for getting the Gunners back in the Premier League. With a deeper squad he can have them challenging for the title again.

Nick Mendola: Eddie Howe — Pep’s the best to do it (maybe ever), but Howe’s at least a year ahead of schedule by getting Newcastle into the Champions League. He kept the Magpies level while missing marquee signing Alexander Isak for November, December, and January. Newcastle only lost back-to-back league games once, and that was a Liverpool-Man City double whammy.

Andy Edwards: Eddie Howe


Best XI

JPW

Nick Pope

Kieran Trippier — William Saliba — Ruben Dias — Luke Shaw

Rodri — Kevin De Bruyne — Martin Odegaard

Bukayo Saka — Harry Kane

Erling Haaland

 

Nicholas Mendola

Alisson Becker

Kieran Trippier — Wiliam Saliba — Ruben Dias

Rodri — Bruno Guimaraes

Kevin De Bruyne — Martin Odegaard — Bukayo Saka

Harry Kane — Erling Haaland

 

Andy Edwards

David Raya

Kieran Trippier — Manuel Akanji — Ben Mee — Fabian Schar

Bruno Guimaraes — Kevin De Buryne — Martin Odegaard

Bukayo Saka — Erling Haaland — Harry Kane


Player of the Year

JPW: Erling Haaland – Who else!? Broke the Premier League goalscoring record and was the missing piece of the jigsaw for City. A machine.

Nick Mendola: Erling Haaland — This could’ve been Martin Odegaard until Arsenal’s flame-out, as the Gunners went away with a whimper.

Andy Edwards: Erling Haaland


Non-Erling Haaland Player of the Year

JPW: Bukayo Saka

Nick Mendola: Toss-up between Harry Kane and Mohamed Salah. So… Rodri.

Andy Edwards: Bukayo Saka


Best Performance on a Relegation-Threatened or Relegated Side

JPW: Romeo Lavia – The teenager is a star in the making and will surely leave relegated Southampton and get snapped up by one of the top six this summer. 19 years of age and already a Belgian international, Lavia is going to the very top.

Nick Mendola: Amadou Onana — It might’ve been Tyler Adams had the American not been injured, but Onana was all-action and will fetch a king’s ransom even if Everton fall at the last hurdle.

Andy Edwards: James Maddison


Goal of the Year

JPW: Kaoru Mitoma for Brighton at Leicester. Amazing skill to cut inside and what a finish. One of the players of the season (along with fellow Seagulls Moises Caicedo and Alexis Mac Allister) as Brighton stunned everyone to qualify for Europe.

Nick Mendola: There have been some sensational bits of teamwork and some dazzlers from distance, and I’m going for the latter as unexpected rocket launcher Michael Keane let fly a knuckling and vicious late equalizer for Everton vs Tottenham.

Andy Edwards: Ivan Toney’s third goal of his hat trick versus Leeds on Sept. 6.


Best Signing not named Erling Haaland

JPW: Joao Palhinha – His importance to Fulham is huge and one of the best holding midfielders in the Premier League. The Cottagers will do well to keep hold of the Portuguese midfielder this summer.

Nick Mendola: Gabriel Jesus deserves a mention and Sven Botman is right there, but it’s Casemiro for me. The pair of red cards aside, he changed the entire feel of what it meant to for opponents to see Manchester United on the fixture list.

Andy Edwards: Casemiro


Club of the Year

JPW: Brighton – To finish in the European spots after losing Graham Potter early in the season is some achievement. And to do it the way they play with free-flowing, exciting and attacking football is even better. Roberto De Zerbi added a cutting edge to their attacking play and even though Brighton will lose plenty of stars this summer, their recruitment has been sensational and owner Tony Bloom has created the model club. Any young player on the planet will now want to sign for Brighton.

Nick Mendola: Brighton — Shouldn’t this say Man City? Maybe, but the Seagulls were forced to find a replacement for Graham Potter and nailed it, getting career seasons out of Pascal Gross and Solly March, turning Moises Caicedo and Alexis Mac Allister into the most-desired midfield duo in England, and even unveiling Kaoru Mitoma and Evan Ferguson as its next stars through the market and academy, respectively.

Andy Edwards: Brighton and Hove Albion


Favorite Moment of the Season

JPW: Manchester City 4-1 Arsenal – Title favorites squaring off in what felt like a decider and superstars dazzled for City.

Nick Mendola: The first Manchester derby of the year probably should be the date we agree the season arrived upon us. Manchester United had won four-straight after a slow start for Erik ten Hag and there wasn’t a pair of eyes in the Premier League that weren’t trained upon this one. That’s when Erling Haaland had three goals and two assists to tell the league to forget about the Golden Boot and Manchester that any red tide would need to wait a while.

Andy Edwards: Harry Kane scoring his 267th goal to become Tottenham’s record scorer.


Biggest Disappointment of the Season

JPW: Leicester City – From pushing for the top 4, being in Europe and winning the FA Cup to  basically relegation with pretty much the same squad. Huge season of underachievement.

Nick Mendola: The Big Six. You could make a case for three of the traditional big boys and maybe even four considering whatever Arsenal’s been doing since early April. Did you know the Gunners are no longer top two in expected points? Whether Liverpool’s mentality slippage and excuse making, Chelsea’s whirlwind everything, or Tottenham’s shocking waste of Harry Kane (and maybe Antonio Conte), well… wow.

Andy Edwards: Everything about Tottenham’s season that wasn’t Harry Kane breaking the club scoring record.


Biggest Headscratcher of the Year

JPW: Tottenham – From Antonio Conte’s meltdown to Harry Kane’s brilliance and so many superb and awful displays intertwined, the ultimate Jekyll and Hyde team in the Premier League. No idea what they were going to churn out from one week to the next.

Nick Mendola: Chelsea — Here are the teams to win fewer matches than the Blues with one matchday left: Forest, Leicester, Leeds, Everton, Southampton. We had questions after the ownership change meant unplanned exits for Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger, and more after Chelsea bought more than a dozen $10M-plus players and only uncovered one who will 100% definitely be a part of the big picture (Enzo Fernandez. We would’ve included Marc Cucurella but he’s reportedly unsettled).

Andy Edwards: Leicester sticking with Brendan Rodgers until April with relegation looming large.


Worst Sacking of the Season

JPW: Ralph Hasenhuttl – Southampton hadn’t backed Hasenhuttl in the transfer market for almost four years and the first time they did, they gave him 14 games with a group of talented youngsters. He had done a great job to steady the ship amid lack of investment and the new owners, Sport Republic, should have given him longer to turn things around and work with new recruits in the January window. What a mess Saints were as they hired and fired Nathan Jones and then basically were resigned to their fate when appointing assistant coach Ruben Selles. They now need to hit the reset button in a big way (Burnley style) in the Championship.

Nick Mendola: How to pick just one? Thomas Tuchel’s firing didn’t pan out for Chelsea, and Joe’s correct that Ralph Hasenhuttl’s dismissal wasn’t the answer, but at the risk of sounding biased I’m going with Jesse Marsch. The 49-year-old American was fired less than a week after the January transfer window slammed shut and even if you believe he needed to go, the club did not have a replacement ready for three matches. Eventually hiring Javi Gracia to solidify their defending, Leeds has kept a clean sheet on his debut, a 1-0 win over Southampton, and has not repeated the trick again.

Andy Edwards: Antonio Conte, for how long it took

U20 World Cup schedule: How to watch live, groups, calendar, dates, times, fixtures

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The U20 World Cup takes place in Argentina from May 20 until June 11 as 24 teams full of the best young players on the planet go head-to-head to be crowned World champs.

[ LIVE: Watch the U20 World Cup en Espanol ]

And of course, the USA have plenty of talented youngsters so all eyes will be on Mikey Varas and his squad as they aim to go better than the quarterfinal spot they’ve reached in each of their last three U20 tournaments (2015, 2017, 2019) and they won Group B with three wins from three to reach the knockout rounds.

England, Brazil and hosts Argentina are among the favorites to win the tournament as Argentina stood in at the last minute to host the event after the tournament was moved from Indonesia.

Below is everything you need for the U20 World Cup.


2023 U20 World Cup schedule, start time, dates, how to watch live

  • When: May 20 to June 11
  • Group stage kick-off times: 2pm ET, 5pm ET
  • Location: Argentina
  • TV channels en Español: Telemundo, Universo
  • Streaming en Español: Telemundo, Online via NBC.com

2023 U20 World Cup schedule

All kicks off times ET

Round of 16

Match 38: Tuesday, May 30: USA vs New Zealand – 1:30pm
Match 37: Tuesday, May 30: Uzbekistan vs Israel – 5pm
Match 40: Wednesday, May 31: Brazil vs Tunisia – 1:30pm
Match 42: Wednesday, May 31: Colombia vs Slovakia – 1:30pm
Match 39: Wednesday, May 31: England vs Italy – 5pm
Match 41: Wednesday, May 31: Argentina vs Nigeria – 5pm
Match 44: Thursday, June 1:  Gambia vs Uruguay – 1:30pm
Match 43: Thursday, June 1: Ecuador vs South Korea – 5pm


Quarterfinals

Match 46: Saturday, June 3: Winner Match 37 vs Winner Match 40 – 1:30pm
Match 47: Saturday, June 3: Winner Match 42 vs Winner Match 39 – 5pm
Match 48: Sunday, June 4: Winner Match 43 vs Winner Match 32 – 1:30pm
Match 45: Sunday, June 4:  Winner Match 38 vs Winner Match 44 – 5pm


Semifinals

Match 49: Thursday, June 8: Winner Match 45 vs Winner Match 46 – 1:30pm
Match 50: Thursday, June 8: Winner Match 47 vs Winner Match 48 – 5pm


Third-place game

Match 51: Sunday, June 11: Loser Match 49 vs Loser match 50 – 1:30pm


Final

Match 52: Sunday, June 11: Winner Match 49 vs Winner mtahc 50 – 5pm


Group stage results

Group A

 

Saturday, May 20: Guatemala 0-1 New Zealand – 2pm
Saturday, May 20: Argentina 2-1 Uzbekistan – 5pm
Tuesday, May 23: Uzbekistan 2-2 New Zealand – 2pm
Tuesday, May 23: Argentina 3-0 Guatemala – 5pm
Friday, May 26: New Zealand 0-5 Argentina – 5pm
Friday, May 26: Uzbekistan 2-0 Guatemala – 5pm


Group B

Saturday, May 20: USA 1-0 Ecuador – 2pm (92nd minute winner from Jonathan Gomez)
Saturday, May 20: Fiji 0-4 Slovakia – 5pm
Tuesday, May 23: USA 3-0 Fiji – 2pm
Tuesday, May 23: Ecuador 2-1 Slovakia – 5pm
Friday, May 26: Slovakia 0-2 USA – 2pm
Friday, May 26: Ecuador 9-0 Fiji – 2pm


Group C

Sunday, May 21: Israel 1-2 Colombia – 2pm
Sunday, May 21: Senegal 0-1 Japan – 5pm
Wednesday, May 24: Senegal 1-1 Israel – 2pm
Wednesday, May 24: Japan 1-2 Colombia – 5pm
Saturday, May 27: Japan 1-2 Israel – 5pm
Saturday, May 27: Colombia 1-1 Senegal – 5pm


Group D

Sunday, May 21: Nigeria 2-1 Dominican Republic – 2pm
Sunday, May 21: Italy 3-2 Brazil – 5pm
Wednesday, May 24: Italy 0-2 Nigeria – 2pm
Wednesday, May 24: Brazil 6-0 Dominican Republic – 5pm
Saturday, May 27: Brazil 2-0 Nigeria – 2pm
Saturday, May 27: Dominican Republic 0-3 Italy – 2pm


Group E

Monday, May 22: England 1-0 Tunisia – 2pm
Monday, May 22: Uruguay 4-0 Iraq – 5pm
Thursday, May 25: Uruguay 2-3 England – 2pm
Thursday, May 25: Iraq 0-3 Tunisia – 5pm
Sunday, May 28: Iraq 0-0 England – 2pm
Sunday, May 28: Tunisia 0-1 Uruguay – 2pm


Group F

Monday, May 22: France 1-2 South Korea – 2pm
Monday, May 22: Gambia 2-1 Honduras – 5pm
Thursday, May 25: France 1-2 Gambia – 2pm
Thursday, May 25: South Korea 2-2 Honduras – 5pm
Sunday, May 28: South Korea 0-0 Gambia – 5pm
Sunday, May 28: Honduras 1-3 France – 5pm


Ranking the 2023-24 Premier League kits

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The 2023-24 Premier League kits are starting to be unveiled and there are some beauties out there.

[ MORE: 2022-23 Premier League schedule ]

From retro looks to snazzy designs, there are some very unique new looks as teams get ready for the new season.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights

Below we rank the Premier League kits which have been released as plenty more have been dropping ahead of the 2023-24 season.


1. Liverpool

A classic look for the red home shirt and this is a belter. It has been kept simple and the white trim is marvellous. Liverpool have nailed this.

Liverpool kit
Getty Images

2. Crystal Palace

Absolutely lovely stuff and it also looks like a kit Spider Man would wear!? The red and blue halves are divine, while having the original Crystal Palace design on the shirt is a great touch. This kit also celebrates that Palace have now been in the Premier League for 10 years. The blue shorts and socks are also lovely. Well done Palace. Well done.


3. Manchester City

A nod to being at their current stadium for 20 years, Man City go for a retro look from the 2003-04 season when things were very, very different from them. It’s a lovely kit and having seen it in-person, up close it looks even better than the photos.


4. Arsenal

There is a lot going on with the print on the red but the gold is a nice touch. Pretty decent effort.


Mauricio Pochettino announced as new Chelsea boss

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Former Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has crossed the London divide and has agreed to join Chelsea as their new head coach.

Pochettino has signed a two-year contract (with the option of a third) at Stamford Bridge and the Argentine coach is back in the Premier League after a spell as Paris Saint-Germain manager where he won the Ligue 1 title during the 2021-22 season.

He brings Jesus Perez, Miguel d’Agostino, Toni Jimenez and Sebastiano Pochettino to Chelsea as his coaching staff.

[ MORE: Who should be next Chelsea boss? | Sterling brace in Forest draw ]

After a season of turmoil which ended in a lowly 12th-place finish under their new American ownership, Chelsea have taken their time to appoint a new permanent boss.

Thomas Tuchel and then Graham Potter were both fired and Frank Lampard was named as caretaker boss as things further spiralled out of control in the final months of the season.

Now they have Mauricio Pochettino in charge, Chelsea have a clear direction and it will be intriguing to see how Pochettino gets on back in the Premier League.


What is the main aim for Pochettino? – By Nick Mendola

Known for taking young talent to the next level, Pochettino would take over a Chelsea squad with plenty of it.

The Blues have added myriad u-23 aged players to their first team in recent seasons, including:

  • Benoit Badiashile (22)
  • Wesley Fofana (22)
  • Enzo Fernandez (22)
  • Mykhailo Mudryk (22)
  • Noni Madueke (21)
  • David Datro Fofana (20)
  • Joao Felix (loan, 23)

A good fit for the Blues? – By Joe Prince-Wright

On paper this all makes sense. Pochettino, Luis Enrique, Marco Silva, and Julian Nagelsmann had all been linked with the Chelsea job but Pochettino always seemed like the best fit.

Chelsea need structure and Pochettino and his staff provide it. They know the Premier League inside out and the work he did at Southampton and Tottenham are right up there among the best jobs in Premier League management over the last 10 years.

He is a coach who demands nothing but total commitment on the training pitch and loves to work with a small squad of players and develop young talent. So the first thing he will do is trim this squad and he now has a season without European competition to work them hard on the training ground and drill his ideology of intense, high-pressing football into the Chelsea squad.

Given the caliber of players that Chelsea have, and can buy, this is the chance Pochettino has been waiting for as his stint at PSG didn’t really work due to issues behind-the-scenes and with the playing squad.

Now we will get to see if Pochettino can take Chelsea’s expensively assembled squad and give them a structure to express themselves and get back to challenging for trophies and a top four finish (at the very least) in the Premier League.