Carlo Ancelotti

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Lejeune bicycle kick, stoppage time brace stuns Everton

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Carlo Ancelotti saw one of the best performances of his era at Everton die at stoppage time.

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Florian Lejeune scored a bicycle kick amongst two goals in third and fourth minutes of stoppage as Newcastle United rallied for a 2-2 draw against dominant Everton at Goodison Park.

Moise Kean and Dominic Calvert-Lewin scored as the Toffees joined Newcastle in moving to 30 points. Everton has a better goal differential and sits 11th.

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The point for Newcastle defied a horrible 90, er, 92 minutes, but Steve Bruce won’t care much. The smash-and-grab comes three days after the Magpies beat Chelsea at the death.


Three things we learned

1. Moise Kean’s potential is thrilling: The young Italian’s career began with fits and starts, but the striker was the best player on the pitch well before he got his first Premier League goal. Kean then nearly had a “hockey assist” when Bernard chipped over the bar.

2. Longstaff brothers struggle, Saint-Max absence clear: Injuries forced Isaac Hayden out wide and Steve Bruce used the local brothers Sean and Matty in the middle of the pitch. They struggled mightily, and we’re sure Bruce would’ve been wondering if new signing Nabil Bentaleb might’ve been able to sneak into a kit for the second half. The manager eventually moved Hayden into the middle of the park to join the duo.

The Magpies congested backs and midfielders means they rely on Joelinton, Miguel Almiron, and especially Allan Saint-Maximin to provide threat. The latter was rested after his match-winning assist over 90 minutes versus Chelsea, and his absence was glaring again.

3. Edgy, in-form Calvert-Lewin a nightmare match-up: Everton’s young striker is in red-hot form, but he’s also got a red-hot fuse. Call him an Ashley Barnes with more potential. Calvert-Lewin scored a beauty, his 10th of the league season, but also clattered into Emil Krafth for an unnecessary tackle and yellow card.

Man of the Match: It was going to be Kean, but now it’s a joint honor with Lejeune.


Sloppy midweek moments early, as Miguel Almiron led a terrific run but mishit his pass to Sean Longstaff in the 18. At the other end, an Everton cross missed all of Newcastle’s defenders… and a few unattentive Toffees.

Kean zapped a low shot to force a low save from Martin Dubravka in the 18th minute.

Bernard popped a pass over Jamaal Lascelles and Federico Fernandez to meet Kean, who bundled past Dubravka for a deserved 1-0.

Joelinton turned a header over the bar in the 42nd minute off Isaac Hayden’s cross. Almiron then led another charge but Lee Mason had nothing for a possible blocking foul and Everton cleared the danger.

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Kean fed Walcott to set up Bernard, who chipped a charging Dubravka but put it over the bar. Good goalkeeping.

The Toffees got their second goal when Lucas Digne spotted Calvert-Lewin, who had the better of Lascelles to curl a great finish past Dubravka.

Lejeune scored an overhead kick off a stoppage time scramble, and a silly Everton foul gave Newcastle one desperate chance at the death.

Pickford and the defense blocked three bids at a loose ball, but Lejeune’s fourth crossed the line.

Transfer rumor roundup: Man United in talks with Fernandes; Reina to Aston Villa

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A roundup of all of Friday’s biggest transfer rumors, including those involving Premier League outfits.

[ MORE: Premier League January transfer needs ]

After a failed move to Tottenham over the summer, Bruno Fernandes may find himself on English soil after all.

Manchester United are closing to reaching a deal with Sporting Lisboa for their 25-year-old captain Fernandes, according to O Jogo’s Filipe Dias.

The story so far is that United this time are really closing in on Bruno Fernandes,” Dias told Sky Sports. “We ran the story that there are talks between the two clubs and we figured that a deal might be close in the next few days, or hours even, because Sporting need money badly.

“The situation has changed since last summer,”  he added. “They didn’t accept a deal with Tottenham for 70m euros but that would have been paid with €40m upfront and then another €30m.”

Over the summer, Spurs bid a reported $75 million for Fernandes, only for the deal to fall in the late stages. It has been reported that United would get the midfielder at a reduced price given Sporting’s financial hardships.

Emre Can and Donny van de Beek have also been linked to a move to Old Trafford recently.


Aston Villa and AC Milan have agreed on a deal sending Pepe Reina to Villa Park on a season-long loan, according to Sky Sports News.

Both clubs have agreed on a fee for the 37-year-old goalkeeper, who is expected to arrive in Birmingham on Monday to undergo a medical and put pen to paper.

The former Liverpool ‘keeper quickly emerged as Dean Smith‘s following Tom Heaton‘s season-ending injury.

Villa are reportedly also in pursuit of Newcastle striker Dwight Gayle to replace Wesley Morais, who is also out for the season.


Tottenham have made a 18-month loan offer for Benfica’s Gedson Fernandes.

Benfica and West Ham recently agreed a deal in principle for the transfer of the 21-year-old, but Spurs are reportedly making a late push for the midfielder.

Jose Mourinho and company are currently without Moussa Sissoko, who had surgery on his medial collateral ligament late last year.


Arsenal have offered Shkodran Mustafi to Inter Milan, according to Calciomercato.

With newly-appointed Mikel Arteta looking to revamp his squad, Mustafi may see a move this month.

That said, a move to Inter doesn’t seem imminent for the German, as Inter aren’t looking to sign a center-back unless Diego Godin requests a transfer.


Everton are preparing to launch a $33-million bid for Gremio’s Everton Soares, according to ESPN.

The 23-year-old, who has been linked with Borussia Dortmund and Arsenal in the past, has reportedly been approached by Toffees boss Carlo Ancelotti on a move to Goodison Park.

 

Transfer rumor roundup: Giroud set for Chelsea exit; Man United after Jimenez and Neves?

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A roundup of all of Sunday’s biggest transfer rumors, including those involving Premier League outfits.

[ MORE: Premier League January transfer needs ]

Frank Lampard confirmed reports about Olivier Giroud departing Stamford Bridge this winter on Sunday, saying it’s possible that he will leave soon.

“There’s no update on Ollie, but I’ve spoken with him,” Lampard said. “If the conditions are that it’s something he really wants to do and it works for the club, for me and the squad then it’s something that could happen.

“But only when all of those bases are covered,” he added. “So we’ll see if we’re there.”

Giroud, 33, is under contract with the Blues until the summer, but has only featured twice this season. Aston Villa, Crystal Palace, West Ham, and now Newcastle are linked to the Frenchman.

In January of 2018, Giroud joined Chelsea from rivals Arsenal for a reported $23-million fee.


Wolves’ Raul Jimenez and Ruben Neves are in “early stage” talks with Manchester United via their representatives, according to Goal. On Saturday, managers Nuno Espirito Santo and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer spoke on the rumors following the scoreless draw between Wolves and Manchester United, with Solskjaer unforthcoming about the possibilities of the Mexican’s chances of playing at Old Trafford.


Carlo Ancelotti has given Everton’s board the green light to try and lure Real Madrid playmaker James Rodriguez to Goodison Park on a loan.


Jerome Boateng’s link to Arsenal continues to thicken as the clock ticks. The north London club have inquired about a potential transfer fee, the pleyer’s wages and whether the German defender would be available via loan, given that the Gunners shelled close to $200 million over the summer.


Youngsters Max Aaron from Norwich and West Brom’s Nathan Ferguson are targets for Tottenham’s Jose Mourinho.


Despite only featuring eight times for Everton this season, Crystal Palace are interested in Cenk Tosun. The 28-year-old striker was linked to a move to Selhurst Park before he joined the Toffees in January 2018.

FA Cup Sunday preview: Chelsea, Tottenham in action, Liverpool host Everton

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The third round of the FA Cup is underway, with Aston Villa being the only Premier League team to lose on Saturday. But Sunday’s action promises for quality entertainment and more possible upsets as six top-tier sides enter the tournament.

 [ LIVE: Follow all the FA Cup scores here ]

Carlo Ancelotti and Everton travel down the road to Anfield as the Merseyside Derby headlines the oldest knockout competition in world’s Sunday action. Earlier this season, in Champions League group stage play, Jurgen Klopp and Ancelotti went head-on, with Napoli – the Italian manager’s team at the time – taking the two-match series with a victory and draw. In early December, Liverpool thumped the Toffees 5-2 at Anfield.

Meanwhile, a recovering Chelsea host a thriving Nottingham Forest, while Wayne Rooney and Derby County visit Crystal Palace. Tottenham commences their post-Mauricio Pochettino FA Cup journey as they travel to Middlesbrough, who are coming off a four-game winning streak in the Championship.

Who will win bragging rights in Liverpool? Will Jose Mourinho double down for FA Cup glory?

Below is Sunday’s full schedule of the FA Cup’s third round bouts.


Sunday’s FA Cup third round schedule

Sunday

9:01 a.m. ET: Charlton v West Brom
9:01 a.m. ET: Chelsea v Nottingham Forest
9:01 a.m. ET: Middlesbrough v Tottenham
9:01 a.m. ET: Crystal Palace v Derby County
9:01 a.m. ET: QPR v Swansea
9:01 a.m. ET: Sheffield United v AFC Fylde
9:01 a.m. ET: Crewe v Barnsley
9:01 a.m. ET: Bristol Rovers v Coventry
9:01 a.m. ET: Burton Albion v Northampton
11:01 a.m. ET: Liverpool v Everton
1:16 p.m. ET: Gillingham v West Ham

Klopp backs Ancelotti, ‘one of the smartest people I have ever met,’ to fix Everton

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Liverpool and Everton are set to meet in a Merseyside derby edition of the the FA Cup third round on Sunday (11 a.m. ET), marking the first time Carlo Ancelotti will guide the Toffees against Jurgen Klopp and the Premier League-leading Reds.

[ MORE: FA Cup third round preview, score picks ]

However, that hasn’t stopped Klopp from lavishing his Italian counterpart with praise ahead of Sunday’s showdown at Anfield, calling Ancelotti, the only manager to defeat Liverpool in any competition this season, “one of the smartest people I have ever met.” However, he doesn’t believe that Ancelotti has any sort of secret formula which would enable him to do so again — quotes from the Liverpool Echo:

“We lost that game in Napoli. There was a penalty that was not a penalty. We didn’t play that bad, you can lose a game. It was not that they outplayed us constantly.”

Klopp’s admiration of Ancelotti extends far beyond Sunday’s clash, made abundantly clear by his steadfast belief that Everton is a club and a squad with massive potential just waiting to be unlocked by the right manager.

“Carlo Ancelotti is one of the smartest people I have ever met and he would not have taken the job if he didn’t think the squad was any good.

“We are convinced that the Everton squad is really, really good. They have invested a lot in the transfer market over a few years. It didn’t work out for some reasons but the combination of a good manager and a good squad helps from time to time in football.

“Carlo is obviously someone who can lift a group in a moment when he enters a room.”

“They will do well, 100 percent — especially over the season — but it’s a big challenge in the Premier League as there are other teams doing not too bad as well.

“I’m happy to see him again. Without meeting constantly, we always have a good time.”

The first PL showdown between Klopp and Ancelotti is set for March 14, at Goodison Park.