Nick Pope

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Southgate to rest stars, give youth a chance v. Kosovo

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With qualification to the 2020 European Championship secured earlier this week, England manager Gareth Southgate is set to rest most of his star players in favor of giving a number of younger players a chance to impress when the Three Lions take on Kosovo in Pristina on Sunday (12 p.m. ET).

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According to a report from Sky Sports, Harry Kane and Marcus Rashford will be rested to make way for Chelsea youngsters Tammy Abraham (four caps) and Callum Hudson-Odoi (two caps). Finally given a chance to play regular minutes for the Blues, Abraham has already scored 10 goals in 12 Premier League appearances this season. The 22-year-old former journeyman loanee scored his first England goal in the 7-0 thrashing of Montenegro on Thursday. Hudson-Odoi is yet to score in PL play this season, but has shown well following his return from a ruptured achilles late last season.

John Stones and Jordan Pickford will be moved to the bench after starting against Montenegro. They will likely be replaced by Aston Villa’s Tyrone Mings and Burnley’s Nick Pope. Mings has made just one appearance for England, while Pope would be making his first start. Stones is seen as having taken on an excessive workload this season due to the ongoing defensive injury crisis at Manchester City.

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Jordan Henderson and Joe Gomez departed England camp on Saturday, due to illness and injury respectively. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Declan Rice and Mason Mount could start in midfield with James Maddison (calf) and injury doubt.

Another Chelsea youngster, 21-year-old Fikayo Tomori, is also said to be in line for his first England cap, most likely as a late-game substitute along the backline.

Burnley batter sorry West Ham

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Burnley beat West Ham United 3-0 at Turf Moor on Saturday, as the Clarets battered the Hammers to move above them in the table.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Ashley Barnes and Chris Wood set them on their way in the first half, while an own goal from West Ham goalkeeper Roberto summed up an awful defensive display from the Hammers.

With the win Burnley now have 15 points, while West Ham remain on 13.


3 things we learned

1. Roberto continues to struggle: Lukasz Fabianski was the best goalkeeper in the PL early in the season. His injury have hit the Hammers hard. Roberto, in his debut PL season, is struggling and he was at fault for two of Burnley’s three goals.

2. Burnley show best version of themselves: This display was peak Burnley, as they whipped in dangerous crosses and Barnes and Wood bullied the West Ham defense. Burnley have quietly gone about their business this season and this was another example of them keeping the game simple. They sit in ninth place and when Barnes and Wood.

3. Pellegrini under pressure: West Ham have now lost five of their last seven games in all competitions and they are without a win since they beat Man United 2-0 on Sept. 22. It’s not just the defeats for the Hammers, but the nature of them as they’ve conceded six goals in their last two games. After another summer of big spending, the pressure is on Pellegrini.

Man of the Match: Dwight McNeil – His deliveries caused West Ham problems all game long, and he should have had three assists if Wood didn’t have a goal ruled out via VAR. The England U21 winger has matured superbly and is much more consistent in the final third.


Robert Snodgrass headed just wide as West Ham started well on the road.

But Roberto then punched a harmless effort out, via a deflection from Barnes which should have been a goal kick, but it was given as a corner and that’s how West Ham fell behind.

From the resulting corner Burnley went 1-0 up, Dwight McNeil’s cross found James Tarkowski who nodded it to Barnes who celebrated his new contract with a goal.

Andriy Yarmolenko had to replace the injured Mark Noble as West Ham tried to get back in the game.

Burnley thought they had gone 2-0 up as McNeil’s fine cross found Wood who headed home, but VAR ruled out the goal due the Burnley striker being just offside.

Wood did make it 2-0 just before half time, as Valbuena gave the ball away and McNeil crossed for Wood to smash home. The New Zealand striker then celebrated by putting his finger to his ear and mimicking a VAR check…

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights

Yarmolenko curled a shot on target at the start of the second half as the Hammers improved, but then they shot themselves in the foot. Again.

A corner from McNeil was punched into his own net by Roberto as Burnley sealed the win.

Aaron Cresswell should have scored but Nick Pope denied him, while at the other end Roberto did save well to keep out Phil Bardsley‘s long-range effort, then to deny Wood and Jeff Hendrick.

Overall, the Hammers put in a poor display and Burnley ran out deserved winners and it got even worse for the away side late on as substitute Manuel Lanzini suffered a serious looking shoulder injury.

Ox, Hudson-Odoi in England squad; Grealish left out

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Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Callum Hudson-Odoi have been recalled to the England squad after lengthy spells out due to the injury.

England play against Montenegro and Kosovo on Nov. 14 and Nov. 17 respectively. A point against Montenegro will secure England’s qualification to EURO 2020 next summer.

AOC and CHO have both battled their way back to full fitness in recent months and the attacking midfielders have been rewarded with recalls to the Three Lions setup as Hudson-Odoi last featured in March and Oxlade-Chamberlain had a brief return in September.

There is however no place for Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish, as the midfielder is nursing a minor injury and didn’t feature in their defeat against Liverpool last weekend.

James Maddison has been called up by Southgate once again, as he is yet to make his debut and didn’t feature last month as he pulled out of the squad due to illness. Much was made about Maddison being spotted in a casino days later, but Southgate has rewarded the Leicester City playmaker for his fine form.

There are some injury concerns for England with Chelsea’s Ross Barkley and Mason Mount struggling with knocks, while Jordan Henderson is suspended for the game against Montenegro.

Below is the squad in full.


England national team squad

Goalkeepers: Tom Heaton (Aston Villa), Jordan Pickford (Everton), Nick Pope (Burnley)

Defenders: Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool), Ben Chilwell (Leicester), Joe Gomez (Liverpool), Harry Maguire (Manchester United), Tyrone Mings (Aston Villa), Danny Rose (Tottenham), John Stones (Manchester City), Fikayo Tomori (Chelsea), Kieran Trippier (Atletico Madrid)

Midfielders: Ross Barkley (Chelsea), Fabian Delph (Everton), Jordan Henderson (Liverpool), James Maddison (Leicester City), Mason Mount (Chelsea), Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (Liverpool), Declan Rice (West Ham), Harry Winks (Tottenham)

Forwards: Tammy Abraham (Chelsea), Callum Hudson-Odoi (Chelsea), Harry Kane (Tottenham), Marcus Rashford (Manchester United), Jadon Sancho (Borussia Dortmund), Raheem Sterling (Manchester City), Callum Wilson (Bournemouth)

Sheffield United ease past Burnley

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Sheffield United beat Burnley 3-0 at Bramall Lane on Saturday, as the Blades finally secured a thumping win in the Premier League.

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For most of this season Chris Wilder‘s side have impressed on the ball but haven’t taken their chances but they scored three times in the first half against Burnley, with John Lundstram scoring twice and John Fleck adding another.

Burnley barely threatened as Sean Dyche‘s side lost a third-straight game, while Sheffield United move up to sixth on 16 points.


3 things we learned

1. Lundstram delivers: He’s now scored four goals in the Premier League this season and

2. Free-flowing Blades prevail: Sheffield United had scored three home PL goals all season, but they scored three in the first 45 minutes in a real breakout day for Wilder’s side. They have threatened this all season long and they should gain huge confidence from a comfortable win against Burnley.

3. Burnley’s defensive problems: The Clarets have now let in nine goals in their last three games and that is unlike them. Sheffield United’s movement caused them problems and Burnley were dragged all over the place. Dyche will not be happy with this very un-Burnley like display.

Man of the Match: John Fleck – Scored one goal and was superb in the engine room to continue his recent good form. The Scotsman was everywhere.


Lundstram put Sheffield United 1-0 up to continue his fine start to the season and Burnley had a penalty appealed looked at by VAR but nothing was given.

Soon after Lundstram got his and Sheffield United’s second, as he finished off a flowing move as Enda Stevens crossed for the midfielder to tap home.

The goals kept coming as Fleck made it 3-0 before the break after Lys Mousset played him in. The Scotsman finished superbly to cap off a wonderful first half for the Blades.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

In the second half Ashley Barnes was found unmarked but he skied it over the bar as Burnley’s best chance of the game came and went.

Sheffield United continued to look dangerous as Nick Pope denied David McGoldrick and the Blades kept pouring forward.

Lampard ‘absolutely delighted’ for Pulisic

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At one point this season, Christian Pulisic‘s biggest critic was his boss, Frank Lampard.

[ MORE: Match recap ]

Slowly but surely, though, the narrative changed, primarily because the 21-year-old American began to shed off the immense pressure that came with his record move from Germany. As he began to contribute on a positive level for Chelsea, the talk surrounding him began to lighten up.

And just days later after the Chelsea legend’s praising comments on the U.S. men’s national team captain, Pulisic – with zero Premier League goals to his name – erupted for a perfect hat trick in the Blues’ 4-2 victory over Burnley, the second-ever by an American in the Premier League.

After the impeccable performance, Lampard – unlike in many prior situations – was full of praise for Pulisic.

“I’m absolutely delighted for him,” Lampard said following the match. “A lot of talk around Christian for the big price tag, the fact he’s quite rightly a star in his country and plays for the US so well and captain of, so you get asked questions about it. I’m delighted to see him do that today. I know the backstory and the pressures of a move like that. I also know he played for his country through the summer and had one week break this summer to come back after that.”

“Then you get the pressure of can you settle in the Premier League, so I’ve tried to deal with it in the way I see best which is to give him minutes,” the 41-year-old added. “He’s played games this season already, but I’ve also got competition in that area. I need them all on edge, I need them all trying to perform when they get in the team and play. Christian has been doing it recently, he’s been doing it from the bench. He fully deserved his start today and it was a fantastic match-winning performance.”

As the price tag shows, it’s never been about the attacker not having the quality to perform in the Premier League – his perfect hat trick performance at Turf Moor debunks that theory entirely. The big talking point around Pulisic since his arrival at Chelsea has been his transition to the coveted league’s pace, physicality, level of play, and his ability to convince Lampard on the training ground and during his cameos that he’s a better choice than the likes of Callum Hudson-Odoi, Mason Mount and Willian.

According to Lampard, he’s been doing just that recently.

“I know what a good player he is, I see that closehand, Lampard said. “There are things he has to learn and improve because he’s just turned 21, it’s the same with all young players. There are things that he’s going to work on and I think he knows it and he knows that I’m driving that daily in training. The way he’s trained in the past few weeks, and the impact he’s had when playing, he’s said to everyone ‘here I am’ and what talent he does have. I’m really pleased for him today. It’s what we need from all our attacking players; to be a threat, to play like that, have a ruthless edge about how they finish and he showed the full package today.”

On Saturday, Chelsea’s youngest player ever to score a Premier League hat trick dazzled from start to finish. His quick feet, sharp turns and slithering moves were too much for Burnley’s backline and Nick Pope.

It’s now up to him if he’ll grab and run with the opportunities that will come as a result of his historic performance. After all, unlike in instances before, he does have Lampard on his side now.

“Exactly,” the former Chelsea midfielder responded when asked about the effectiveness of Pulisic’s body swerves. “He’s got that and when you talk about the Premier League one thing there is is physicality, particularly at places like Burnley. When he moves the ball so quickly like he can do, he can cause a lot of problems. It’s a great thing to watch when people have balance like that. The first goal when he waits, then a step over and then moves away again from the player, that stuff is brilliant. I hope it gives him the confidence that it should do, and I’m pretty sure it will do, that will do him great going forward.”