Football https://english.manoramaonline.com/sports/football.rss Read Football NewsLive Score Live Blog Match Coverage Analysis and Reports. Picture Gallery English Premier League World Cup – Onmanorama Sports ⚽ en Sat, 15 Jun 2019 04:28:17 GMT https://www.manoramaonline.com/privacy.html ISL, I-League teams to vie for glory in revamped Durand Cup in Kolkata Kolkata: Heavyweights Mohun Bagan will kick off the historic Durand Cup at the Saltlake Stadium here on August 2 after the third oldest competition football tournament of the world has been shifted out its traditional venue, New Delhi for the first time. Returning after a three-year hiatus, the 129th edition of the tournament will feature six I-League and five Indian Super League teams, including defending champions of the respective tournaments -- Chennai City FC and Bengaluru FC. "We took a three-year gap to make it more attractive. Kolkata is the mecca of Indian football. So, it's an effort to revamp the tournament and make it a pan-India affair," Lt Gen RP Kalita, Chief of Staff, HQ Eastern Command told reporters here. Former I-League champions Minerva Punjab, however, will be missed from the 16-team tournament which will also feature second division I-League team Mohammedan Sporting. "I spoke to (Minerva) owner Ranjit Bajaj. They were 10th in the I-League table. We were initially planning to get top six teams from the I-League," he said. From ISL, Kerala Blasters too will not be taking part and the Indian Army, the organisers of the meet, said they have roped in Gokulam Kerala FC as a replacement. "They said they were unavailable, so we got in touch with Gokulam as we wanted a club from Kerala to come," he said. The ISL franchises may not send full-strength teams for the tournament. "We spoke to the teams as well as with (All India Football Federation president) Praful Patel. There are some issues with the transfer window. The teams assemble the team by August-end or September," Kalita said. "We couldn't further delay the tournament as it would have clashed with the Calcutta Football League. So we are happy that the teams are coming and the tournament will happen," he added. The Indian Army will feature two teams -- Army Red and Green. Besides, there will be a team each from the Indian Air Force and Indian Navy. 16 teams will be divided into four groups in the league stage and all the group winners will qualify for the semifinals which will be held in Saltlake Stadium on August 20. The summit clash will be held on August 24. The champions will get a prize purse of Rs 40 lakh, while the runners-up team will get richer by Rs 20 lakh. The losing semifinalists will be awarded Rs 5 lakh each. The tournament will be played across five venues of the state -- three in Kolkata and two each in Kalyani and Siliguri. Teams: Group A: East Bengal, Army Red, Jamshedpur FC, Bengaluru FC Group B: Mohun Bagan, Mohammedan Sporting, ATK, Indian Navy Group C: Chennai City FC, Real Kashmir, FC Goa, Army Green Group D: Chennaiyin FC, Gokulam Kerala, TRAU, Indian Air Force https://english.manoramaonline.com/sports/football/2019/07/17/indian-soccer-league-ileauge-durand-cup-kolkata.html https://english.manoramaonline.com/sports/football/2019/07/17/indian-soccer-league-ileauge-durand-cup-kolkata.html Wed, 17 Jul 2019 15:05:39 GMT India dish out best performance in inconsequential match, hold Syria 1-1 Ahmedabad: Already out of the reckoning for a berth in the final, India produced their best performance of the tournament to play out a 1-1 draw against Syria in the final league match of the Intercontinental Cup football tournament here Tuesday. The 18-year-old central defender Narender Gahlot, playing in his second international match, gave India the lead in the 52nd minute but Syria restored parity in the 78th minute through Firas Al Khatib at the EKA Stadium here. India, who had lost 2-4 against Tajikistan and 2-5 against North Korea, collected their first points of the tournament though they ended at the bottom of the table with just one point. More importantly, India spoilt Syria's hopes of making it to the finals. The West Asian side, who needed a win to qualify for the final, ended at third with four points from three matches. Tajikistan and North Korea, who got six points each from three matches, will play in the summit clash on Saturday. India had won the inaugural tournament last year. India, who had conceded nine goals in their earlier two matches, were solid in the defence against Syria with the back-four of Gahlot, Rahul Bheke, Pritam Kotal and Mandar Rao Desai producing a much-improved performance. Amarjit Singh and Sahal Samad were impressive in the middle of the park, just like in the earlier two matches. Captain Sunil Chhetri was, as usual, leading the charge for any Indian attack though he did not score for the first time in this tournament. India could have won in front of the sizeable crowd had not Jerry Lalrinzuala made a clumsy challenge to an opponent three minutes after coming onto the field by replacing Mandar Rao Desai. Syria scored from the penalty to equalise. After experimenting for two matches, India head coach Igor Stimac seemed to have picked the best eleven in his starting line-up though central defender Sandesh Jhingan was left out after he suffered a hamstring injury in the earlier match against North Korea. The starting eleven though had eight changes from the North Korea match. To the credit of the Indians, the team maintained its shape throughout and did not give any clear scoring chance to their opponents who pressed really hard in the second half to win the match. As early in the sixth minute, India could have taken the lead off a cross from nimble-footed Udanta Singh but Sahal and Lallianzuala Chhangte could not tap into the Syria net. Syria had a chance in the 24th minute but India goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu dived to his left to deny Youssef Al Hamwi's header. After a barren first half, India's goal came four minutes after resumption and Gahlot rose above everyone else to connect Anirudh Thapa's corner kick with a powerful header which beat the diving Syria goalkeeper to hit the back of the net. Syria pressed hard with more men upfront but India were able to defend their citadel until Lalrinzuala, who came on to the field in the 74th minute, brought Ahmad Alahmad down for the referee to point to the dreaded spot. Firas Al Khatib stepped up to send his spot-kick to the right of diving Gurpreet to the stunning silence of the home supporters. This was India's fifth match under Stimac's charge. India won just one (against Thailand in the King's Cup last month), drawn one and lost three. The Croatian World Cupper and former head coach had said that Intercontinental Cup was a preparatory tournament for the 2022 World Cup qualifiers starting in September. https://english.manoramaonline.com/sports/football/2019/07/16/india-syria-intercontinental-cup-best-performance.html https://english.manoramaonline.com/sports/football/2019/07/16/india-syria-intercontinental-cup-best-performance.html Tue, 16 Jul 2019 17:23:37 GMT Lampard 'won't look backwards' as he takes over Chelsea Yokohama: Chelsea legend Frank Lampard said Tuesday he won't be looking backwards as he takes on possibly the biggest challenge of his career: managing his former team. Speaking in Japan where the Blues are playing two friendlies, Lampard said he was "very happy" with his squad but expects to work for the team hard during the pre-season. "For me, the story is not to look backwards," said Lampard, whose return to his former club as head coach was confirmed earlier this month. "I know the club very well, I know the players very well. I have my own way that I want to work with the players," he told reporters in Yokohama, where Chelsea will face Japan's Kawasaki Frontale on July 19. Lampard acknowledged taking on leadership of the Blues will be a major undertaking, with Chelsea having lost their best player of recent times, Eden Hazard, to Real Madrid last month, and serving a two-window transfer ban that prevents him from making new signings. But he said there was no reason to dwell on the ban. "I think I inherited very good players. We cannot bring in any players we know that... But I'm very happy with the squad. "My job now is to work hard in pre-season with them. I like my teams to play with a lot of energy and speed, with and without the ball, so I want to win it back as quickly as we can," he said. Chelsea's new USD 72 million signings, Christian Pulisic, is listed as one of the team members visiting Japan, but it was not year clear when he will arrive. Lampard declined to reveal the line-up for the two friendlies on Chelsea's calender, which include a much-anticipated face-off against Barcelona on July 23. American international Pulisic signed a five-and-a-half-year contract with Chelsea in January but was immediately loaned back to Germany to finish the season at Borussia Dortmund. Lampard won 13 trophies in 13 years and became Chelsea's all-time leading marksmen with 211 goals from midfield during a decorated playing career at Stamford Bridge. But he has a lot to prove in his new role. The former England midfielder has just one season of managerial experience having led Derby County to the Championship play-off final in May when they were beaten by Aston Villa. https://english.manoramaonline.com/sports/football/2019/07/16/frank-lampard-chelsea-fc-manager-football-english-premier-league.html https://english.manoramaonline.com/sports/football/2019/07/16/frank-lampard-chelsea-fc-manager-football-english-premier-league.html Tue, 16 Jul 2019 14:03:55 GMT Neymar raises fresh speculation about Barca move Neymar posted a video featuring himself in a Barcelona shirt on social media on Saturday, raising more speculation that the Paris St Germain forward might return to his former club, but his public relations company said he would show up in Paris on Monday. The injured Neymar has been in his native Brazil supporting their victory over Peru in the Copa America final, missing pre-season training with PSG. He joined PSG from Barcelona on a five-year deal for a world-record transfer fee of 222 million euros ($250.17 million) in 2017, but there has been recent talk of him returning to the Spanish club. The 27-year-old prompted more speculation with a brief Instagram video, showing a black-and-white image of himself in a shirt with the badge of Barcelona and a quote from the Bible, which was widely reproduced on news websites. The post led to much speculation about his intended message, with French newspaper L'Equipe saying: "Everyone will see in this ambiguous message a hidden announcement by the PSG striker of his return to his old club." But his public relations company, in a statement carried on Brazilian websites, said, "After these events he will show up normally on July 15 as PSG had been informed weeks ago." Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu earlier this month confirmed reports that Neymar wanted to leave Parc des Princes, while admitting the Ligue 1 champions did not want to sell him, according to media reports. PSG responded by saying they would sanction the Brazilian for missing the start of pre-season training last Monday, even though the player's father said Neymar's delayed return had been agreed in advance so he could be present for Brazil's victory in the Copa America. Neymar's video also contained a Biblical passage in Portuguese, from the Book of Isaiah, that was apparently aimed at his critics. It began: "No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue which rises against you in judgment you shall condemn." https://english.manoramaonline.com/sports/football/2019/07/14/neymar-brazil-barca-psg-instagram.html https://english.manoramaonline.com/sports/football/2019/07/14/neymar-brazil-barca-psg-instagram.html Sun, 14 Jul 2019 05:48:04 GMT