Sunderland

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Sunderland reaches final as Portsmouth fan kicks player (video)

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Sunderland held off Portsmouth to advance to the League One promotion playoff final, and the testy 0-0 second leg really kicked off in the second half.

Black Cats midfielder Luke O’Nien tumbled into the seating area after a tussle with Pompey’s Tom Naylor in the 64th minute.

[ MORE: Jovic to Real Madrid ]

But as O’Nien was kicked by a fan in the front row during his attempt to return to the pitch, setting off a scene with Sunderland’s Lee Cattermole.

The usually ornery and understandably more so Cattermole looked as if he was ready to tangle with the Portsmouth fan before things settled down.

With no goals scored in the second leg, Chris Maguire’s first leg marker at the Stadium of Light sends Sunderland to the precipice of a return to the Championship. The Black Cats will meet with Charlton Athletic or Doncaster Rovers in the final.

Everton looking into video of alleged bar fight involving Pickford

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Everton is investigating a video appearing to show an early morning bar fight involving goalkeeper Jordan Pickford.

Posted on Twitter, the video shows a person who looks the ex-Sunderland keeper in a fracas, reportedly with Newcastle United fans.

[ MORE: Fate on Liverpool’s side? ]

The man alleged to be Pickford, the 25-year-old England keeper, is shown being dragged away from a fight outside a bar in Sunderland.

From Sky News:

In a statement, an Everton spokesman said: “The club has been made aware of an alleged incident involving one of our players and we are looking into the matter.”

Pickford played 90 minutes in Everton’s clean sheet defeat of West Ham United on Saturday, as he has in 34 of the Toffees’ 36 matches this season (He did not draw EFL Cup duty).

He counts 10 clean sheets on his record, but also a rough ending to the first Merseyside Derby of the season and a colossally head-scratching day in a 3-2 come-from-ahead loss to Newcastle United last month.

Pickford has 17 caps and has started 14 of England’s last 15 matches. His former club Sunderland lost the Checkatrade Trophy to Portsmouth on Sunday in penalty kicks.

Report: Minnesota United turning to ex-Sunderland GK Mannone

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The goalkeeping competition at Minnesota United was set to be very interesting, with longtime MLS backstop Bobby Shuttleworth and promising rookie Dayne St. Clair joined by a third keep.

The potential identify of that third one makes the competition a little less open.

[ MORE: Man City favored by oddsmakers ]

The Loons will reportedly add former Arsenal and Sunderland backstop Vito Mannone on loan from Reading, says The Athletic’s Jeff Rueter.

Mannone, 30, is behind Emiliano Martinez — on loan from Arsenal — and journeyman Sam Walker has been No. 2 in recent weeks.

The keeper was a bright light for Sunderland in its relegation season two years ago, backing the club from top-to-bottom and staying very active in the community.

Transfer rumor roundup: Man Utd wants Bergwijn; Bournemouth after $16M CB

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Manchester United is hoping to beat a host of teams to $32 million PSV Eindhoven attacker Steven Bergwijn.

The 21-year-old has 10 goals and nine assists this season after breaking out with nine and 11 last season.

[ MORE: Latest on Emiliano Sala ]

Bergwijn plays across the top of attack as a center forward or wing. He has a goal or an assist in 13 of his last 14 Eredivisie matches.

Inter Milan, West Ham United, and Tottenham Hotspur are among the other clubs linked with Bergwijn.

Bournemouth have reportedly seen a near $16 million bid for Brentford defender Chris Mepham, a Welsh international viewed as a piece to help fill the void caused by Simon Francis‘ long-term injury.

Mepham, 21, was with Chelsea’s academy before moving to Brentford. Standing 6-foot-3, he has 48 appearances with a goal for the Bees.

Rafa Benitez and Newcastle continue to seek reinforcements in the market, with The Daily Mail reporting that the Magpies are nearing a breakthrough at left back in the form of Milad Mohammadi.

The 25-year-old Iranian plays for Russian side Akhmat Grozny, and is currently on international duty with Iran at the Asian Cup. He’s one of the mid-table side’s top performing players this season.

The Magpies have also joined West Ham in tracking Josh Maja, the Sunderland striker who is out-of-contract this summer. Maja, 20, has 15 goals in 24 League One matches this season.

US international Lynden Gooch signs Sunderland extension

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USMNT international Lynden Gooch has signed a long-term extension with current club Sunderland, keeping him at the Stadium of Light through the summer of 2022, the club has announced.

The 23-year-old Santa Cruz product debuted for Sunderland in 2016 when the club was in the Premier League, earning four starts and 19 appearances before an ankle injury slowed his season and saw him thrust to the bench. With the club relegated to the Championship, Gooch still could not find a spot in the starting lineup, and the club again dropped a level after a poor season.

This campaign, Gooch has been a regular fixture in the Sunderland lineup, making 21 league appearances so far including 20 starts. With his help, Sunderland sits third in the League One table and is firmly in the promotion conversation.

Gooch made sure manager Jack Ross, who joined the club in late May, got his due when discussing the American’s reasons for signing his extension.

“I am glad to get it all done because the manager has given me a lot of opportunities,” Gooch told the official Sunderland club website. “He has shown faith in me when I haven’t been playing well at times, but I’m delighted to be in this first team and playing because that’s the most important thing at my age. The club has completely changed since the summer and the manager was a big reason for me wanting to stay. He has had a big impact on me this season and given me the license to do what I do best. Hopefully I can continue to show the form I have done in the first-half of the season and help us get promoted.”

Gooch has four caps for the United States national team, with three of those coming in friendlies. He has not started for the national team in his career, with all four appearances coming off the bench. He last appeared for the national team back in May, playing the final 17 minutes of a 3-0 friendly win over Bolivia.