Joao Mario

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Serie A: Inter win 7th straight to put pressure on off-form Juve

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A roundup of Saturday’s action in Italy’s top flight…

[ MORE: Barcelona win it late | Real Madrid do, too ]

Juventus 3-1 Cagliari

Juve’s unbeaten start to the season reached 11 games (10 wins) on Saturday, but Massimiliano Allegri’s side was anything but convincing in knocking off Cagliari.

Things started off as well as possible, when Paulo Dybala put the home side 1-0 ahead in the first minute, but the seven-time defending Italian champions failed to maintain that same intensity for the rest of the game and required a fair bit of fortune to secure the 3-1 result.

Joao Pedro brought the visitors back to level terms in the 36th minute, but the stalemate was short-lived. Filip Bradaric booted the ball into his own goal in the 38th minute, and it would prove to be the winner.

Still, Juve labored the ensuing 50 minutes and only extended the lead to 3-1 in the 87th minute, when Juan Cuadrado bagged his first league goal of the season. Even despite the performance, Juve remain six points clear of their closest title competition.

Inter Milan 5-0 Genoa

Speaking of the no. 1 contender for Juve’s crown, Inter Milan are the in-form team in the league right now after winning seven straight games to catapult themselves in to second place, ahead of Napoli on goal differential.

Saturday’s 5-0 demolition of Genoa came courtesy of a complete team performance — goals from Roberto Gagliardini (two), Matteo Politano, Joao Mario and Radja Nainggolan. Inter’s leading scorer (and Golden Boot contender) Mauro Icardi started the game on the bench, and remained there for 90 minutes, yet Inter waltzed to a five-goal victory.

Sunday’s Serie A schedule

Lazio vs. SPAL — 6:30 a.m. ET
Sampdoria vs. Torino — 9 a.m. ET
Parma vs. Frosinone — 9 a.m. ET
Chievo vs. Sassuolo — 9 a.m. ET
Bologna vs. Atalanta — 12 p.m. ET
Udinese vs. AC Milan — 2:30 p.m. ET

Almost unprecedented: Sporting Lisbon facing exodus, free agent frenzy

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There is an almost unbelievable state of play at one of the world’s most successful clubs right now.

That club is Sporting CP, the group that has been home to Cristiano Ronaldo, Luis Figo, and William Carvalho.

That last name is part of our story today.

[ MORE: Stoke signs Nigerian mid ]

When last we checked in with the Lisbon club, its players had been attacked mid-training session by a mob of supposed fans following the club’s failure to land its near-annual berth in the UEFA Champions League. This came a month after the club’s entire first team was suspended after a row with its president.

Sporting had spent four seasons in the UCL, rebounding from its lone season outside Portugal’s Top Four since 1976.

Now many on its laundry list of high-priced talents could be leaving the club for free, potentially setting one of the most storied clubs in Portugal back to its very roots.

Bas Dost, William Carvalho, Gelson Martins, and Bruno Fernandes reportedly requested to break their contracts on Monday, joining goalkeeper Rui Patricio and Daniel Podence.

Dost scored 27 league goals this season, and joined Fernandes and Martins as Top 15 performers according to WhoScored. Carvalho, the big 26-year-old midfielder, was 21st.

Sporting has done a remarkable job identifying talent from without and growing talent from within, only once spending more than $14 million on a player (Dost) while selling 11 individuals for that much or more (Adrien Silva, Ruben Semedo, Joao Mario, Islam Slimani, Marcos Rojo, Bruma, Joao Moutinho, Nani, Cristiano Ronaldo, Hugo Viana, Aldo Duscher).

Only a cursory search through our pages finds several of Sporting’s want-aways in the gossip section for almost thrice that figure. Carvalho (and/or Sporting) has resisted interest of as much as $50 million, often connected with Jose Mourinho. Dost has been linked with Newcastle, and Patricio said to be making a move to PL new boys Wolves.

To lose these players for free, largely because of an attack from “supporters” is bonkers. And in your gut, you have to think the players stand a very good chance of being allowed to leave for safety reasons, making for an unexpected sort of free agent frenzy.

How long would it take for a club to rebound from that, and how far could Sporting sink on the table? Fortunately, it would have some time to rebuild for its Europa League run, but wow.

Which Premier League players will be at World Cup?

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There are 107 players from the Premier League who are going to the 2018 World Cup.

[ MORE: Latest 2018 World Cup news

Manchester City have more players going to the tournament (16) than any other club in the world, while the English national team are the only country in the entire competition to have 100 percent of their players from their domestic league.

Belgium have an incredible 11 of their 23-man squad who play in the Premier League, while Senegal and Brazil have six players each from the PL and Argentina, Denmark and France boast five players each in their final rosters.

Below is a breakdown of the PL players heading to Russia this summer, with players from recently relegated teams in 2017/18 and teams coming up to the PL in 2018/19 included.

Here’s a country-by-country breakdown.


Argentina
Manuel Lanzini (West Ham United)
Marcos Rojo (Manchester United)
Nicolas Otamendi (Manchester City)
Sergio Aguero (Manchester City)
Willy Caballero (Chelsea)


Australia
Mat Ryan (Brighton & Hove Albion)
Aaron Mooy (Huddersfield Town)


Belgium
Thibaut Courtois (Chelsea)
Simon Mignolet (Liverpool)
Vincent Kompany (Manchester City)
Jan Vertonghen (Tottenham Hotspur)
Toby Alderweireld (Tottenham Hotspur)
Mousa Dembele (Tottenham Hotspur)
Eden Hazard (Chelsea)
Marouane Fellaini (Manchester United)
Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City)
Romelu Lukaku (Manchester United)
Nacer Chadli (West Bromwich Albion)


Brazil
Gabriel Jesus (Manchester City)
Danilo (Manchester City)
Fernandinho (Manchester City)
Willian (Chelsea)
Roberto Firmino (Liverpool)
Ederson (Manchester City)


Colombia
David Opsina (Arsenal)
Jose Izquierdo (Brighton & Hove Albion)
Davinson Sanchez (Tottenham Hotspur)


Croatia
Dejan Lovren (Liverpool)


Denmark
Kasper Schmeichel (Leicester City)
Andreas Christensen (Chelsea)
Christian Eriksen (Tottenham Hotspur)
Mathias Jorgensen (Huddersfield Town)
Jonas Lossl (Huddersfield Town)


England
Jack Butland (Stoke City)
Jordan Pickford (Everton)
Nick Pope (Burnley)
Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool)
Kieran Trippier (Tottenham Hotspur)
Kyle Walker (Manchester City)
Gary Cahill (Chelsea)
Phil Jones (Manchester United)
John Stones (Manchester City)
Harry Maguire (Leicester City)
Danny Rose (Tottenham Hotspur)
Ashley Young (Manchester United)
Eric Dier (Tottenham Hotspur)
Fabian Delph (Manchester City)
Ruben Loftus-Cheek (Chelsea, on loan at Crystal Palace)
Jordan Henderson (Liverpool)
Jesse Lingard (Manchester United)
Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur)
Raheem Sterling (Manchester City)
Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur)
Marcus Rashford (Manchester United)
Danny Welbeck (Arsenal)
Jamie Vardy (Leicester City)


Egypt
Mohamed Salah (Liverpool)
Mohamed Elneny (Arsenal)


France
Hugo Lloris (Tottenham Hotspur)
Paul Pogba (Manchester United)
Olivier Giroud (Chelsea)
N'Golo Kante (Chelsea)
Benjamin Mendy (Manchester City)


Germany
Mesut Ozil (Arsenal)
Antonio Rudiger (Chelsea)
Ilkay Gundogan (Manchester City)


Iceland
Gylfi Sigurdsson (Everton)
Johann Berg Gudmundsson (Burnley)


Japan
Maya Yoshida (Southampton)
Shinji Kagawa (Leicester City)


Korea Republic
Son Heung-min (Tottenham Hotspur)
Ki Sung-Yueng (Swansea City)


Mexico
Javier Hernandez (Mexico)


Morocco
Roman Saiss (Wolverhampton Wanderers)


Nigeria
Wifried Ndidi (Leicester City)
Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City)
Victor Moses (Chelsea)
Alex Iwobi (Arsenal)


Peru
Andre Carrillo (Watford)


Poland
Jan Bednarek (Southampton)
Grzegorz Krychowiak (West Brom, on loan from PSG)
Lukasz Fabianski (Swansea City)


Portugal
Bernardo Silva (Manchester City)
Joao Mario (West Ham United, on loan from Inter Milan)
Cedric Soares (Southampton)
Adrien Silva (Leicester City)


Serbia
Luka Milivojevic (Crystal Palace)
Nemanja Matic (Manchester United)
Dusan Tadic (Southampton)
Aleksandar Mitrovic (Newcastle United, on loan at Fulham)


Senegal
Sadio Mane (Liverpool)
Idrissa Gueye (Everton)
Cheikhou Kouyate (West Ham United)
Mame Biram Diouf (Stoke City)
Alfred N'Diaye (Wolverhampton Wanderers)
Badou Ndiaye (Stoke City)


Spain
David De Gea (Manchester United)
Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea)
Nacho Monreal (Arsenal)
David Silva (Manchester City)


Sweden
Victor Lindelof (Manchester United)
Martin Olsson (Swansea City)
Kristoffer Nordfeldt (Swansea City)


Switzerland
Granit Xhaka (Arsenal)
Xherdan Shaqiri (Stoke City)


Tunisia
Yohan Benalouane (Leicester City)


Leicester City 0-2 West Ham: Hammers almost safe

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  • West Ham six points above bottom three with two games to go
  • Mario, Noble with goals
  • Leicester’s fourth defeat in five

West Ham United beat Leicester City 2-0 at the King Power Stadium on Saturday to all but secure their Premier League safety for this season.

The Hammers scored in each half through Joao Mario and Mark Noble as David Moyes‘ mission to survive relegation is almost over.

With the win West Ham move to 38 points for the season, while Leicester remain on 44 points in ninth place but pressure is building on Claude Puel.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Early on it was tight and tense as West Ham looked dangerous on the but Leicester had plenty of the ball.

West Ham piled on the pressure before the break as Marko Arnautovic hit the woodwork and then moments later they took the lead.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

A cross to the back post was hooked back into danger by Arnautovic and Mario slotted home the opener. 1-0 to the Hammers.

Fousseni Diabate went closest for Leicester as he dragged a shot wide of the far post.

Just before half time there was a flashpoint as Arnautovic took a swing at Harry Maguire which the referee booked the Austrian for.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Another huge moment arrived just after the break as Aaron Cresswell handled the ball with Jamie Vardy clean through but again only a yellow was dished out much to the annoyance of Leicester.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

West Ham then got the killer second goal as a free kick fell to Noble on the edge of the box and the Hammers skipper volleyed home superbly to seal the win, and pretty much their survival in the PL for another season.

Watch Live: Chelsea vs. West Ham United

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West Ham United hopes to insure its Premier League status with a London Derby against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday (Watch live at 11:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

Marko Arnautovic gets the start up top for David Moyes‘ Irons, while Chelsea will trout out a front three of Willian, Eden Hazard, and Alvaro Morata

LINEUPS

Chelsea: Courtois; Azpilicueta, Cahill (c), Rudiger; Moses, Kante, Fabregas, Alonso; Willian, Morata, Hazard. Subs: Caballero, Christensen, Emerson, Bakayoko, Drinkwater, Pedro, Giroud.

West Ham United: Hart, Zabaleta, Rice, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Masuaku, Kouyate, Noble, Fernandes, Joao Mario, Arnautovic. Subs: Adrian, Pask, Evra, Cullen, Diangana, Hugill, Chicharito.