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Wayne Rooney
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Rooney proposes wintry change to help seasons delayed by coronavirus

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Derby County captain Wayne Rooney says players will be happy to play it extra safe when it comes to the coronavirus’ effect on their seasons.

Rooney says there’s a solution for everything, and that the Premier League season could find resolution in the calendar thanks to the winter World Cup scheduled for 2022.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]

While of course theoretical and requiring developments in the treatment and control of the virus, Rooney says European seasons could finish by September

“The next World Cup is in November and December 2022, so you could actually use this situation as an opportunity and say we’re going to finish the 2019-20 season later this year, then prepare for 2022 by having the next two seasons starting in winter.”

There’s a lot of common sense to Rooney’s proposal on the surface level, though obviously there are myriad contractual and legal avenues that may make it improbable.

The big question would be what to do after that 2022 World Cup, as waiting from January to August to start a new season would be a bit wild. Maybe each successive season would change by one month until it reached the traditional start date?

And, honestly, it’s intriguing to wonder if European football adopting a “warmer weather” schedule and international football hosting its events in the Fall would improve an already terrific thing.

Rooney was also critical of the delays in putting Football League matches on hold, saying players were watching other sports close down and unable to focus on their personal coronavirus concerns.

He claimed it “almost” felt like footballers were being treated “like guinea pigs.”

More coronavirus connections to soccer:

Nottingham Forest owner has coronavirus, players may face self-isolation

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Nottingham Forest owner Evangelos Marinakis has announced he has been diagnosed with coronavirus and this could have huge implications on the English Championship club.

Marinakis, 52, was at Forest’s second-tier game against Millwall on Friday and is said to have met several first team players. Government advice in the UK is that anybody who comes into contact with someone who has coronavirus should spend at least two weeks in self-isolation as symptoms could take five days to surface.

The former European champions and the English Football League are in discussions about the best way to proceed as their players and coaching staff all came into contact with Marinakis. The club released the following statement.

“Mr [Evangelos] Marinakis was diagnosed after showing the first symptoms on his return to Greece yesterday afternoon. During his short stay in Nottingham last week he did not show any symptoms of the virus. The club are seeking advice from medical professionals and the relevant governing bodies to ensure the correct measures are taken. Until this time the club will be making no further comment.”

Forest, who are pushing for promotion to the Premier League and currently sit in fifth place in the Championship table, play against Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday, Huddersfield next Wednesday and then Bristol City on Mar. 22 before the international break.

Marinakis, who also owns Greek giants Olympiakos, released the following statement on his Instagram account.

“The recent virus has ‘visited’ me and I felt obliged to let the public know. I feel good as I take all the necessary measures and I discipline to the doctors’ instructions. I strongly advice all my fellow citizens to do the same. I wish all a quick recovery.”

With games in Serie A postponed, matches in La Liga to be played in empty stadiums until early April and crowds in France limited to 1,000 per Ligue 1 games and multiple Champions League and Europa League games impacted by being played behind-closed-doors, it seems only a matter of time before leagues across the world follow suit.

USMNT’s Miazga gets on score sheet with sharp goal

Matt Miazga
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USMNT center back Matt Miazga finished like a striker to help Reading to a 3-1 win over Birmingham City on Saturday.

The 51st-minute goal leveled the scoreline for the visiting Royals at St. Andrew’s, and was part of a big day for Miazga.

It comes on a day that fellow USMNT players Josh Sargent and Weston McKennie scored in the Bundesliga, and Geoff Cameron was sent off for QPR.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]

He had nine clearances, a blocked shot, and an interception, though he was also debited with an error on Birmingham’s opener (Stats via SofaScore). He won nine of 13 duels and passed at 70 percent.

Miazga, 24, now has two goals this season, his second-straight on loan to Reading from Chelsea.

It was the American center back’s third match back following a lengthy ankle injury. He’s also spent time on loan to Vitesse and Nantes.

Miazga cut across the box to meet Andy Rinomhota’s cross, blasting it inside the near post.

FA Cup preview: Lampard wary of Liverpool; Rooney preps for Man Utd

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Seven more spots are left in the FA Cup quarterfinals after Arsenal handled Portsmouth at Fratton Park on Monday.

[ MORE: JPW’s score predictions ]

There are plenty of intriguing ties, but Tuesday’s got the best one.

Liverpool will pick itself up from a shocking loss to Watford that ended several aspects of its dream season, and the opponent is no slouch.

A Chelsea side which has twice challenged the Reds this season awaits at 2:45 p.m. ET inside Stamford Bridge.

[ LIVE: Follow all the FA Cup scores ]

Frank Lampard is expecting an ornery bunch of Liverpool players.

“We have to play with a big spirit,” he said, via Football.London. “We would expect them to put out a strong team. They have done well in the last year, and their defeat won’t make it any easier.”

The other two Tuesday kickoffs see Premier League sides visiting Championship opposition.

Newcastle saved some players at the weekend in order to ensure a big chance to beat second-tier leaders West Brom, while Sheffield United didn’t play at the weekend before heading to Reading.

There’s an all-Premier League tie on Wednesday, where Spurs host Norwich City.

Wobbly Leicester City hosts Championship side Birmingham City, while League Cup winners and defending FA Cup champions Manchester City visit Sheffield Wednesday.

Thursday brings a beauty to close out the week, as Wayne Rooney‘s Rams of Derby County welcome his old buddies Manchester United.

Rooney says he still loves his old club and follows their progress, but is prepared to do what he can to give Pride Park a memorable upset.

USMNT mid Holmes need scans after limping off for Derby County

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The only thing that could cool down USMNT midfielder Duane Holmes is injury.

Holmes was forced out of Derby County’s 1-1 draw with Huddersfield Town after just 29 minutes on Saturday with the match still scoreless.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ] 

The 25-year-old entered the day with three goals and three assists in 2020, combining with Wayne Rooney to send the Rams up the table.

Derby County manager Phillip Cocu said Holmes will need scans to determine the extent of his injury.

Holmes’ form gave him considerable hope of being called into Gregg Berhalter’s USMNT next month for friendlies in Wales and the Netherlands, so those scans will be watched closely by club and country.

The draw has Derby County nine points back of the promotion playoff places.