Peter Byrne/PA via AP

Liverpool 0-0 West Brom: Controversy holds wasteful Reds

Leave a comment
  • LFC has 71 percent possession
  • Reds boast 13-6 edge in shots
  • Baggies winless since August

A resolute display from visiting West Brom and a bizarre disallowed Dominic Solanke goal left Liverpool with just a point from a scoreless draw at Anfield on Wednesday.

Solanke was adjudged to have purposely handled his late second half goal mouth offering, and the Reds didn’t find an answer in staying fifth with 31 points.

West Brom moves 17th with 14 points.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Roberto Firmino came close to opening the scoring in the 17th minute when Mohamed Salah‘s bounding pass met his side foot at the back post, but the Brazilian’s shot zipped across the goal.

Jonny Evans blocked Liverpool’s next best chance, as a ball from the left gave Salah a better than half chance to make it 1-0 in the 43rd minute.

The Reds looked destined for nothing, and felt even worse when Dominic Solanke’s inadvertent handling of a Joe Gomez cross into the goal was deemed intentional.

Ben Foster stopped an attempt and Evans blocked Solanke’s rebound as the Reds found sudden late life.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Three (young) Lions: Southgate adds more youth to squad

Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Gareth Southgate‘s task(s) at hand have been anything but a walk in the park during his 14 months as England manager (as an aside, the England job has never been an easy one, for anyone), but the 47-year-old can be quite pleased with what he’s achieved thus far.

[ MORE: One of the favorites — Spain in fine form, thrash Costa Rica 5-0 ]

Having qualified the Three Lions for the 2018 World Cup as one of four sides (Germany, Spain and Belgium) to finish qualifying without a loss, Southgate’s focus is now fully fixed on next summer’s tournament in Russia. As such, the current international break has provided England’s former U-21 boss a golden opportunity to bring a number of peripheral players into the squad to make their case, and Southgate sure is making the most of it.

Friday’s draw with defending world champions Germany saw eight non-regulars feature for England, prompting Southgate to bring an additional trio of youngsters into camp ahead of Tuesday’s clash with another heavily favored side, Brazil.

[ MORE: Shaqiri promises “nice party” in Switzerland “when we qualify” ]

21-year-old goalkeeper Angus Gunn (Manchester City, on loan to Norwich City) was brought in on Friday to replace the injured Jack Butland (broken finger). On Saturday, Southgate announced the arrivals of Liverpool striker Dominic Solanke and Bournemouth midfielder Lewis Cook, both 20 — and both of whom starred during England’s recent U-20 World Cup triumph, as top goalscorer and captain, respectively.

These are, clearly, the perks of qualifying during the initial round and avoiding the playoffs altogether. While other nations battle for their place in Russia, Southgate has been afforded an extra month — and two more fixtures — as he begins to assemble his 23-man squad. The three players added this weekend are, admittedly, long shots at this point, but their progression from youth to senior setup is undoubtedly an encouraging sign.

Phil Jones has also withdrawn from the current squad after suffering a thigh injury against Germany.

England Under-20 team chases rare global title vs Venezuela

AP Photo/Lee Jin-man
2 Comments

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) If England defeats Venezuela in the final of the Under-20 World Cup on Sunday, the country will celebrate its first soccer world title for more than 50 years.

Since winning the World Cup back in 1966 on home soil, England has underachieved on the global stage.

“It’s our time,” said Liverpool striker Dominic Solanke, who has scored four goals in the tournament. “The determination we have is what drives us on. We know that even if we’re losing, we can bring it back.”

[ MORE: Saturday’s Transfer Rumor Roundup ]

England has won five of six games to get to the final at Suwon World Cup Stadium. After topping Group A with wins over six-time champion Argentina and host South Korea, England has defeated Costa Rica, Mexico and Italy.

That 3-1 semifinal victory was the most impressive after Italy took a second-minute lead. England replied with two goals from Solanke and another from Ademola Lookman, who joined English Premier League team Everton in January.

Venezuela was the most impressive performer in the group stage, defeating Mexico, Germany and Vanuatu, scoring 10 goals and not conceding any.

In three knockout stage games, however, the team has needed extra time to eliminate Japan, the United States and Uruguay. Venezuela defeated the South American champion 4-3 in a penalty shootout with goalkeeper Wuilker Farinez the hero.

“We have to remember that we’re Venezuela, that we’re a team and a country that’s coming on fast,” Farinez said. “Reaching a World Cup final is a turning point we’ve been looking for for a while. For the last 2 1/2 years we’ve been thinking that this is our time.”

Italy, England book last two U-20 World Cup semi spots (video)

Photo by Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images
1 Comment

The semifinals are set at the U-20 World Cup in South Korea, and it’s going to be CONMEBOL versus UEFA for the title come Sunday in Suwon.

[ MORE: Latest U-20 World Cup news ] 

Uruguay and Venezuela booked their date in the semi on Sunday, and are going to be joined by two of the bigger names in European football.

Mexico 0-1 England

Soon-to-be Liverpool striker Dominic Solanke scored the lone goal as England set-up a Thursday semifinal against Italy in Jeonju.

Italy 3-2 Zambia

It took extra time for Italy’s 10-man squad to take care of the last remaining CAF squad. AC Milan’s Luca Vido nabbed the winner in the 111th minute after Federico Dimarco (Inter Milan) and Riccardo Orsolini (Juventus) scored in regulation.

Solanke, Begovic leave Chelsea

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Two deals were wrapped up on Tuesday as Liverpool and Bournemouth both took players from Chelsea, with the deals officially going through on July 1.

Dominic Solanke, 19, swapped Stamford Bridge for Anfield as the talented English striker found it tough to break through at Chelsea with Diego Costa and Michy Batshuayi ahead of him in the pecking order.

Solanke is currently away with England’s U-20 at the 2017 U-20 World Cup in South Korea and will link up with Liverpool for preseason.

The powerful forward will provide competition for Divock Origi, Daniel Sturridge and Danny Ings at Anfield.

Solanke spent the 2015-16 season on loan at Vitesse Arnhem in Holland, scoring seven goals, but stayed at Chelsea in 2016-17.

The transfer fee for Solanke will be set at a tribunal where Chelsea will be handed compensation for developing the youngster in their academy.


Another player leaving Chelsea is Premier League champion Asmir Begovic.

The Bosnian goalkeeper arrived at Chelsea two summers ago from Stoke City but failed to usurp Thibaut Courtois as Chelsea’s number one (always a tall order) and he will now head back to the South Coast with Bournemouth.

A fee of $13 million has been agreed for Begovic with the Bosnian international completing the move on July 1.

Begovic, 29, previously starred for Portsmouth, where he had a brief loan stint at Bournemouth in 2007, before making his name at Stoke in the PL from 2010.

A great shot stopper, Begovic will fight with Artur Boruc for the starting spot at the Vitality Stadium, and in a weird quirk Begovic scored in the Premier League against Boruc back in the 2013-14 season.

Begovic made 33 appearances for Chelsea over the past two seasons, keeping 10 clean sheets.