- West Brom stays alive
- Phillips continues NUFC mastery
- Magpies outshoot WBA 17-8
West Bromwich Albion earned itself a stay of relegation with a 1-0 win over Newcastle United at St. James’ Park on Saturday.
Matty Phillips scored for the Baggies, who have 28 points and sit five points behind 17th place Swansea City. Interim manager Darren Moore has collected eight points in four matches.
Newcastle remains 10th with 41 points.
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Chances both ways early, with James McClean ripping a shot wide for West Brom and Dwight Gayle sending a low shot into the arms of Ben Foster.
The Baggies went ahead through a net-battering shot from Phillips, who took advantage of Jake Livermore‘s lid-opening pass cooking Paul Dummett.
Kenedy looked to have leveled the score in the 34th minute, trading passes with Ayoze Perez but dinking his shot off the outside of the post.
Mo Diame had a close shot deflected over the bar, and Newcastle were refused shouts for a penalty kick off the ensuing corner kick. Foster also made an outstanding in-tight save prior to the uncalled foul.
The counter attack saw Martin Dubravka make a fine save on Jay Rodriguez.
West Brom stayed stingy in the second half, hoping to avoid formalizing its Championship status for another week.
Diame had a second shot deflected out for a corner, and Jamaal Lascelles couldn’t get on the end of Jonjo Shelvey‘s attempt.
DeAndre Yedlin served a second ball into the mix, and substitute Joselu nodded his attempt wide in the 86th.
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Julio Baptista’s time at Arsenal only lasted 12 months, but it was a memorable stint.
The Brazilian, who played the 2006-07 season for the Gunners, announced his retirement on Thursday at the age of 37. The former Brazil international only managed 10 goals with Arsenal, but they came in bunches.
Baptista memorably scored four goals against Liverpool in the League Cup quarterfinal, as Arsenal finished with a 6-3 win. Baptista even missed a penalty kick that game.
Baptista cemented his legacy later in the season with a brace in the FA Cup against rival Tottenham.
Baptista, clearly an immensely talented player, suffered from being a good, but not great player. He seemed to have no perfect position other than the No. 10, and most teams he played for had better players in that position. It forces him to play along the wings, deeper in midfield or as a striker during the prime of his career.
In the end, injuries beset his career, especially a short spell at Orlando City in MLS.
Italy opened the FIFA Under-20 World Cup with a bang, knocking off fellow Group B favorite Mexico, 2-1, in Gdynia, Poland.
It only took Italy three minutes to get on the board, as Davide Frattesi found a pocket of space in front of the El Tri backline and dribbled in on goal. The Sassuolo midfielder then decided to fire on goal from distance, hitting a rocket into the corner to give Italy a 1-0 lead.
Later in the first half Gianluca Scamacca also took a rip from outside the box, but his strike sailed just wide.
A defensive error on a corner kick gave Diego Lainez and Mexico life. In the 37th minute, AC Milan product Alessandro Plizzari committed a howler, coming out to punch away the curled corner kick. Plizzari missed the ball and it went right to the head of Roberto De La Rosa, who calmly made it 1-1.
El Tri however suffered a blow late in the match as Italy took back the lead. In the 67th minute, Luca Ranieri collected the ball on the edge of the six yard box and from a tight angle, he scored past Mexico goalkeeper Carlos Higuera.
For Mexico, it’s a rough way to start the World Cup, having to go against a perennial power in Italy and playing on European soil. Not all is lost for Mexico, but it has to rebound with a win in its next game against Japan.
Elsewhere, Colombia defeated host Poland, 2-0, Japan tied Ecuador 1-1, and Senegal beat Tahiti, 3-0.
GENEVA (AP) Middle East neighbors Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates are jointly bidding to host the Under-20 World Cup in 2021.
FIFA says the Gulf plan is among five to express interest in bidding, including Brazil.
Indonesia, Peru and a Myanmar-Thailand joint bid are the others.
FIFA announced the contenders Thursday, one day after dropping a proposal for Qatar to share hosting duties for the 2022 World Cup with regional neighbors.
The 2021 U20 contenders must submit a formal bid by Aug. 30. FIFA’s ruling Council will pick the winner, likely in October.
The 2019 edition kicks off Thursday in Poland.
MOSCOW (AP) Vladimir Putin has given FIFA president Gianni Infantino a medal.
The Russian president awarded Infantino the Order of Friendship at the Kremlin on Thursday.
Infantino has often said last year’s World Cup in Russia, where the host nation surprisingly reached the quarterfinals, was the best of the 21 editions of the tournament.
Putin thanked the FIFA leader for “your glowing assessment of our efforts.”
Infantino says of Russia’s “bonds of friendship” with soccer “is not the end, it is only the beginning of our fruitful cooperation and interaction.”
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