Three things we learned from Tottenham – Liverpool

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Tottenham – Liverpool: Sadio Mane scored and set up two others as Liverpool burst out of its scoreless funk and into the win column with an impressive 3-1 win over Tottenham Hotspur on Thursday.

Roberto Firmino and Trent Alexander-Arnold also scored for the reigning Premier League champions, who move back into the top four with 37 points. Man City leads the league with 41 points and has played one fewer match than the four closest rivals for the crown.

[ MORE: Player ratings for Tottenham, Liverpool ]

Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg’s smashed answer was Tottenham’s only goal on a day that mistakes doomed them and Harry Kane did not emerge for the second half after two first-half injuries.

Spurs’ 33 points are good for sixth, four points back of Liverpool. Tottenham has a match-in-hand on the Reds.

STREAM TOTTENHAM – LIVERPOOL FULL MATCH REPLAY


Three things we learned from Tottenham – Liverpool

1. Mane a menace: Sadio Mane was everywhere over the first hour or so, taking seven shots and scoring one. Hugo Lloris stifled his bids to score thrice before Mane finally broke onto the scoresheet, and the Senegalese only misplaced four passes while making four interceptions for Liverpool.

2. Spurs have indecisive moment at the worst time: Tottenham conceded a goal with essentially the last meaningful kick of the first half when Aurier lost track of Mane and the Senegalese controlled the ball with his chest before passing through the six. Eric Dier didn’t try to divert the ball given his close range and Hugo Lloris was slow to react when Mane passed instead of shooting. The unclaimed ball was an easy goal for Firmino and not emblematic of a focused first half of defense from Spurs.

3. Kane, Matip injuries bear watching: Spurs star Harry Kane spent two spells on the turf in the first half and did not return for the second half. Liverpool center back Joel Matip also left at the break, and both players have enough injury history to leave their fans a bit worried with the transfer window about to close and big games ahead for both.

Man of the Match: Sadio Mane


Tottenham – Liverpool recap

It might’ve been 1-1 after four minutes, as Sadio Mane missed a wonderful chance after a Trent Alexander-Arnold long ball found him on the other side of Serge Aurier to meet a Mohamed Salah through ball.

Spurs then put a number on the scoreboard only to see it removed for offside after Tanguy Ndombele escaped the clutches of Thiago Alcantara to find Harry Kane, who put Heung-min Son on goal for a fine finish.

But the South Korean was offside by mere inches on Ndombele’s pass to Kane.

Harry Kane needed some treatment on the turf after 12 minutes but would not have to sub out of the match.

No sooner had Liverpool taken an apparently comfortable hold of the game that Hugo Lloris caught a Roberto Firmino shot to begin a counterattack that ended with Alisson stopping a low Son shot.

Lloris made an outstanding save when Salah chipped a pass to Mane in the 23rd. The Senegalese winger was everywhere, and Rodon made a perfect lunging tackle on Mane in the 18 to keep it scoreless in the 37th before Lloris halted a vicious Mane strike before half.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Liverpool took a lead into the break with a goal deep in stoppage time, Mane blazing past Aurier to put a bounding pass between Eric Dier and Hugo Lloris that the keeper might’ve gathered on another day. Instead, it met Firmino for a tap-in.

The Reds sent a warning sign within moments of the second half restart, Salah blazing over before Lloris turned a Mane shot to the back post where Alexander-Arnold made no mistake with a shot back across goal for 2-0.

Hojbjerg had an emphatic answer with his first goal in 57 league games, smashing from just outside the arc with the outside of his boot. Alisson Becker had not chance.

Salah then hammered a shot off the bottom of Harry Winks’ studs to make it 3-1, but VAR had a handball to monitor in the buildup.

Martin Atkinson was sent to the pitchside monitor, where he said Firmino’s handball was enough to disallow the goal.

Mane got his goal in the 675th minute, Alexander-Arnold’s cross chested by Rodon onto the path of the Senegalese for 3-1.

USMNT reportedly opens contract talks with Gregg Berhalter; Good or bad idea?

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Gregg Berhalter may be sticking around the United States men’s national team program, giving the USMNT coaching continuity as it moves from 2022 World Cup Round of 16 member to 2026 World Cup co-host.

ESPN’s Jeff Carlisle says that Berhalter is beginning contract discussions with the United States Soccer Federation but also interested in taking a job in Europe with his profile having risen alongside the USMNT at the World Cup.

Berhalter’s current contract ends at the end of the calendar year, and the Yanks have scheduled a domestic camp in January and friendlies against Serbia and Colombia.

[ MORE: USMNT transfer rumors for Musah, Dest ]

Berhalter has done some good things for the program, most notably winning the CONCACAF Nations League and Gold Cup with two different groups. He also straightened out the defending, for the most part, and got out of the World Cup group.

Berhalter successfully recruited Sergino Dest and Yunus Musah, two of the program’s stars at the World Cup. He also convinced Malik Tillman, Gaga Slonina, and Jesus Ferreira that the U.S. was the right place for their national team futures.

He also, subjectively, was slow if not downright stubborn in acquiesing to certain points-of-view that made the team better. From Tyler Adams as a right back at the outset of his tenure to saying Tim Ream didn’t fit how he wanted to play about a month before the World Cup… then playing him every minute of the tournament.

But for the most part when lessons were learned, they stayed learned.

Should Gregg Berhalter continue as USMNT boss?

Let’s start here, because it’s necessary: It’s clear that Berhalter cared about his players and the project, whether you like the way he operated or not. This wasn’t a half-assed operation, but one with passion.

So does he still have that passion? Only he can answer that, and if he’d like to get more matchdays in his life then maybe he does want to go back to the club game.

And frankly, that’s fine either way, because his four years with the program were neither amazing nor pitiful. They can be described as anything from a slight disappointment to a minor success, depending on your perspective and expectations.

If you believe that picking up the pieces from the absolute travesty that was failing to qualify for the World Cup from the richest nation and one of the two most talented nations amongst CONCACAF men’s programs was really hard, then you think Berhalter getting the men to the 2022 World Cup and surviving the group with a young group was a solid step in the right direction and a minor success.

If you believe that the American soccer climate is such that you should always make the World Cup out of one of the world’s lesser confederations and that the Yanks progressed as the second team of a group in which they were the second-ranked team according to FIFA and Elo Ratings, well, you can have a different standard.

The Yanks will never again fail to qualify for the World Cup given the expanded field, but hosts have historically had a drastically-improved chance to reach the semifinals. THe federation would have to be confident that picking the best squad regardless of how it reflects on his previous selections — let alone a Best XI — is going to happen under a given coach.

Berhalter’s 49 and is far from the worst or best boss in USMNT history. Whoever’s in the job four years from now will have a chance to go down as either one. Choose wisely, fed. And Gregg! Who knows how far his star could rise with a solid run in Europe, and history says there will be the chance to reconnect with the USMNT job.

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Premier League table, 2022-23 season

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If it’s the 2022-23 Premier League table you’re after, you’ve come to the right place.

[ MORE: How to watch Premier League in USA ]

We’re at the 2022 World Cup break, and the final few rounds of Premier League fixtures caused so many shocks.

Who’s looking like title contenders and/or favorites?

Almost at the halfway mark of the 2022-23 season, Arsenal and Manchester City are looking head and shoulders above the rest.

The Gunners will have their hands full for the duration of their title challenge, as Erling Haaland continues to take the Premier League by storm with an almost impossible goal-scoring record.

Newcastle, Tottenham and Manchester United are locked in a battle for the top four, while Liverpool have improved and will be back in the Champions League scrap and Chelsea are struggling.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights

Who are the early-season candidates for relegation?

Newly promoted Nottingham Forest moved off the bottom of the table with a win before the break, with Wolves and Southampton currently occupying the other two relegation places.

Leicester have picked up a few big wins, while West Ham, Everton and Leeds all find themselves within a few points of the bottom-three after a topsy-turvy start.

Below you will find the latest Premier League table.


Premier League table – Matchweek 16

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England vs France: How to watch live, stream link, team news

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Match 59 of the 2022 World Cup features a pair of European heavyweights duking it out for a place in the semifinals when England faces France on Saturday.

Didier Deschamps’ France is bidding to become a back-to-back World Cup winner, but Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions are tournament-hardened and have shown their explosive nature three times this tournament.

STREAM ENGLAND vs FRANCE LIVE

France beat Poland 3-1 in its Round of 16 match while England overcame a dodgy start to pound Senegal 3-0.

Neither team can say its faced a test like this in the tournament, and this could be a fantastic fight in Qatar.

[ LIVE: World Cup 2022 schedule, how to watch, scores, hub ]

Here is everything you need for England vs France.


How to watch England vs France live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 2pm ET, Saturday, December 1
Stadium: Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor
TV channels en Español: Telemundo
Streaming en Español: Peacock (all 64 matches)


Key storylines, players to watch closely

England will look to Harry Kane, though the question remains who will flank the Tottenham center forward. Marcus Rashford’s been very good but Bukayo Saka and Phil Foden got the starting spots against Senegal and it paid off for Southgate.

Kylian Mbappe has been borderline unstoppable and will test Harry Maguire, John Stones, and friends and Antoine Griezmann pulls the strings in behind and Aurelien Tchouameni continues to strengthen his reputation in the center of the pitch.


England quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 5
World Cup titles: 1 (1966)
World Cup appearances: 15
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from UEFA
Coach: Gareth Southgate
Key players: Harry Kane, Jude Bellingham, Jordan Pickford

France quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 4
World Cup titles: 2 (1998, 2018)
World Cup appearances: 15
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from UEFA (Won Group D)
Coach: Didier Deschamps
Key players: Kylian Mbappe, Raphael Varane, Antoine Griezmann

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Croatia vs Brazil: How to watch live, stream link, team news

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World Cup-savvy Croatia stands in the way of stylish Brazil’s pursuit of a sixth World Cup crown, and the pair promise a complex match-up on Friday in Al Rayyan.

Match 58 of the 2022 World Cup kicks off the quarterfinals as Neymar leads Tite’s star-studded CONMEBOL powers into a match against the 2018 runners-up.

STREAM CROATIA vs BRAZIL LIVE

Croatia got past Japan in penalties and will now dream of the two wins that could set it back in the final where France could again be waiting for a juicy rematch.

Croatia needed penalties to get past Japan in the Round of 16, while Brazil pasted South Korea 4-1.  Croatia has never beaten Brazil in four meetings, losing at the 2006 and 2014 World Cups.

[ LIVE: World Cup 2022 schedule, how to watch, scores, hub ]

Here is everything you need for Croatia vs Brazil.


How to watch Croatia vs Brazil live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 10am ET, Friday, December 9
Stadium: Education City Stadium, Al Rayyan
TV channels en Español: Telemundo
Streaming en Español: Peacock (all 64 matches)


Key storylines, players to watch closely

Croatia’s Dominik Livakovic was fantastic in penalties versus Japan to get here, but Luka Modric continues to do the things that get Croatia out of trouble and puts the opponents into heaps of it. Josko Gvardiola has arguably been the defender of the tournament, and the 20-year-old looks to test his mettle again against the Selecao.

Pick a Brazil player who’s failed to impress and you’ve achieved a mighty feat. Neymar’s been fantastic when healthy while RIcharlison is in serious pursuit of the Golden Boot. Alisson Becker flexed his muscles once or twice versus South Korea and figures to be busier as the competition continues to heat up in Qatar.


Croatia quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 12
World Cup titles: 0
World Cup appearances: 6
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from UEFA (1st place)
Coach: Zlatko Dalic
Key players: Luka Modric, Andrej Kramaric, Mateo Kovacic, Josko Gvardiol

Brazil quick facts

Current FIFA world ranking: 1
World Cup titles: 5 (1958, 1962, 1970, 1994, 2002)
World Cup appearances: 22
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from CONMEBOL (1st place)
Coach: Tite
Key players: Neymar, Thiago Silva, Casemiro, Alisson Becker

Follow @NicholasMendola