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Newcastle United 1-1 Manchester City: Magpies claim hope for safety in draw

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  • Aguero gets 100 PL goal
  • Anita ties it with rare goal
  • 3rd string GK Darlow with key saves

Vurnon Anita‘s first goal in two years pulled Newcastle United back from an early deficit and into a 1-1 draw, as the Magpies earned what could be a big point in its relegation battle on Tuesday.

Sergio Aguero scored a controversial offside goal early, becoming the first South American to score 100 in the Premier League.

The draw moves 19th place Newcastle a point behind Sunderland and two behind Norwich City in the battle for PL safety. Man City moves ahead of Arsenal and into third place.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Chances were traded early, and Newcastle won a series of corners in the first 10 minutes that all came to nothing.

Aleksandar Kolarov hit the deck to give City a very promising 14th minute free kick from the left of the 18. That fall paid off, and Aguero was offside when he headed in Kolarov’s ensuing kick.

A poor Jamaal Lascelles giveaway almost led to 2-0, but Kevin De Bruyne sliced his 20-yard shot wide of the goal.

Moussa Sissoko carried the ball 50-plus yards on a counter attack, but hit a low shot right at Joe Hart in a terrible waste of an opportunity.

It was a bit of foreshadowing, though, as City let Sissoko scamper down the left side to send a long cross to Anita. The Dutchman worked Kolarov and hit a left-footed shot off the far post and in to make it 1-1.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Kolarov gave a free kick to Andros Townsend on the right wing just two minutes into the second half. Ayoze Perez couldn’t track it onto his head, and it floated to Hart.

Jesus Navas came within a hair of scoring when Newcastle goalkeeper Karl Darlow slapped the City man’s shot just wide of the far post.

Navas found Aguero in the 63rd minute, but Darlow bobbled and then recovered the shot to keep it 1-1.

Sissoko won a free kick when Vincent Kompany, who was rusty, blocked the Frenchman on the wing. Perez ballooned the free kick to Hart.

Man City had a rare chance with 16 minutes to play, and Darlow parried a long-range bullet from De Bruyne. The Newcastle keeper again had to dive to save a goal in the 87th minute.

Substitute Georginio Wijnaldum was robbed by Joe Hart in the 88th minute as Newcastle and City continued to search for the win.

Wijnaldum then won a free kick 30 yards from goal. Could Newcastle grab a huge winner? Not on that play, but the Magpies kept possession into five minutes of stoppage time.

Carlos Vela scored a celestial goal. We are blessed to have seen it

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Carlos Vela is making all other spectacular individual MLS seasons look run of the mill.

I mean, look at the gumption on this guy.

[ VIDEO: Rooney sent off, Kamara scores golazo ]

The Cancun-born playmaker left the San Jose Earthquakes back line on the beach with a soft shoe routine to give LAFC its third goal in a 4-0 win on Thursday

Vela, 30, now has 25 goals and 11 assists in 25 league matches for LAFC this season. He added two goals and an assist in Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup play.

But this one, yeah, this one takes the cake.

First, there’s Vela’s non-chalant dummy before picking up the pass.

Then, there’s Florian Jungwirth’s body language during and after his being cooked with a nutmeg. That’s an entire mood.

Next, Vela dribbles around the keeper and allows a slide tackler so glide past him before finishing with aplomb, the magic touch his going near post as if to say, “Can I beat this guy a second time, or do I have to use the easier route?”

Diego Rossi also had a goal and an assist, while Mark-Anthony Kaye continued his strong season with an assist to ex-Fiorentina prospect Joshua Perez. It’s a first MLS goal for the California-born Perez, now 21.

WATCH: Rooney sees red for forearm shiver, Kamara scores golazo

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Midweek MLS provided plenty to talk about on Wednesday, with two red cards and a golazo in one match alone.

The two main talking points from the New York Red Bulls’ 2-1 win over DC United weren’t really part of what led the victors to three points.

[ MORE: Europa League preview ]

How? Well, one of the world’s marquee names earned a red card via VAR and a returning star scores an absolute stunner, that’s how.

Here’s Ola Kamara’s debut marker for the Black-and-Red, adding to a record which included 49 goals in 97 matches between Columbus and the LA Galaxy before moving to the Chinese Super League for a wildly disappointing time with Shenzhen FC.

All of that is forgotten.

As for the Rooney incident, the Red Bulls already led 1-0 when DC’s star striker went forearm shiver on Cristian Casseres Jr.

It’s the second red of the season for Rooney, who is set for Derby County in January.

Amro Tarek was later sent off for the Red Bulls, who moved ahead of DC in the standings. Kaku and Daniel Royer had RBNY’s goals.

Newcastle takeover could be back on if in holiday relegation battle

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How much do Newcastle United supporters dislike their owner Mike Ashley right now?

Enough that this report is likely to condemn many to hoping their favorite club in the world is in the Bottom 3 come Christmas.

[ MORE: Europa League preview ]

The Chronicle’s Mark Douglas speculates that Ashley will lower his asking price for the club if it is in a relegation fight come December — something that looks certain after the Steve Bruce-led Magpies got bossed around by promoted Norwich City.

Nothing But Newcastle transcribed Douglas’ chatter from his podcast, in which he says,

“It wouldn’t surprise me if we hear more in December because there are still people sniffing around that football club and if the team are in the bottom three, there’ll be people thinking they can get a bargain out of Mike Ashley again. … He will probably more open to listening to lower offers in January and December which is what happened last December. He was basically saying ‘take it off my hands, you now have to take the risk’'”

This is notable for two reasons. First: the social experiment of wondering how many fans could see themselves rooting for their team to take a major and perilous back step just to see the back of a man they perceive is at the root of their failures (and that perception is widespread in this case).

But second, we can see if this rumor comes true because it’s difficult to imagine Newcastle as comfortably mid table by Christmas.

Fan protests and anger are nothing new, but here’s an effort to show how wobbly Ashley’s reputation is on Tyneside: Fans have taken to selling a black and white striped shirt with player name and number but no sponsor just so they can have a Newcastle jersey that doesn’t put money into Ashley’s pockets. And this is after he broke the club’s transfer record twice in one year.

If we’ve learned anything from the past few seasons, though, it’s that boycotts and anger will spur Ashley into insisting that he’s willing to sell and just conveniently enough it will be before the January transfer window. He “won’t be able to buy any players” with the takeover in play, and talks will hit a wall come late January, when they’ll loan a couple young players from Top Six sides.

Yes he spent significant money on Joelinton, Allen Saint-Maximin, and others this summer, but one decent window doesn’t make a culture. Count us amongst the skeptical, for now.

Messi back in training, could be fit for Betis

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BARCELONA, Spain (AP) Lionel Messi was back in full training again on Wednesday and may be fit to face Real Betis in the Spanish league on Sunday.

Messi had been training separately from the squad since injuring his right calf in the preseason.

He missed the team’s 1-0 loss to Athletic Bilbao in the league opener on Friday.

Barcelona has not said how long it expects Messi to be sidelined.

[ MORE: Europa League preview ]

Coach Ernesto Valverde is also dealing with injuries to forwards Luiz Suarez and Ousmane Dembele.

Dembele is certain to miss Sunday’s match at the Camp Nou because of a left thigh injury that should keep him out for about five weeks.

Suarez also isn’t likely to play this weekend because of a muscle injury sustained before halftime of Friday’s game in Bilbao.

Two-time defending champion Barcelona hadn’t loss a league opener in 10 seasons.

More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/apf-Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports