MONDAY’S BIG STORIES

It’s back on!

Well, well, well. We have a title race. Who'd ever want one regular day of Barclays when it serves up weekends like this?
Premier League
Ten Hag insists Man Utd can be ‘dangerous’ but must be more ruthless
01/09/2022 AT 22:05
A ‘here's what you could have had’ display from Harry Kane has handed Manchester City a reality check and Liverpool a lifeline at the top of the Premier League table.
Naturally, Tottenham beating City could merely have poked the beast and spur City on to a 12-game winning run - which they are perfectly capable of - but maybe, just maybe, it won't be so simple, and this weekend has reminded us of how quickly things to change.
There are still three months to go, cup exploits to factor in, injuries too, but it is all gearing up towards a potentially season-defining showdown between City and Liverpool at the Etihad on the second weekend of April.

‘Never was an option, so it is the past’ - Guardiola suggests City have moved on from Kane

Worth noting what this means for Spurs too. With top-four rivals around them picking up valuable points they've managed to add three themselves in a match where zero was deemed the more likely.
There's just something about Spurs against City, and if it does turn out to be Liverpool's year, this weekend will be the moment the momentum shifted in the Reds’ favour, and Spurs' contributions - having also beaten City in August - a major reason why.

Better call Fred – Maguire mystery

If you need a goal, when you're drawing 2-2, who you gonna call? Wait, what?
Fred! What an impact. Just as Manchester United had offered Leeds a way back into the game, along comes Fred from the substitutes bench to score his third Premier League goal of the season.
A fair few accounts enjoyed pointing out Fred now has more league goals than a certain Lionel Messi this season, but beyond that it was a timely contribution at a time when United needed to get back on track and put those dressing-room unrest rumours to bed.
And let’s face it. It was also nice to see Fred get the limelight. "Obviously, Fred is a player that works hard,” Bruno Fernandes told MUTV afterwards, “and he is the kind of player who does not get a lot of media (attention) because he works hard, recovers a lot of balls.”
He even got a positive line out of Roy Keane too: “Well deserved in the end. Fred has definitely improved his finishing and attacking play in the last few months.” Steady on, Roy.
Beyond that you had Harry Maguire once more celebrating like a striker ending a 20-game goal rut, but there was in fact a touching reason behind his knee slide.
The United captain declared “That was for you River” after he was backed by the young supporter to score with a header at Elland Road.
And finally, there is of course the big Maguire mystery – who on earth is that in the photoshopped version of his tweet?
Perhaps we’ll never know… But Football Twitter wants answers.

Good hat-trick, bad hat-trick

You gotta laugh. The below vid shows how Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored his hat-trick goal for Barcelona in his first La Liga game for the club.
No, that’s not him shooting, and so we’re not entirely sure how this goal goes down on paper. An 18-yard strike off his back?
Opta’s feed, which runs on sites including BBC Sport and Sky Sports, went with the following: “Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Barcelona) with an attempt from outside the box to the high centre of the goal. Assisted by Pedri.”
"Attempt" is a kind word, and attempting to forget is something New Zealand and Liverpool Women’s defender Meikayla Moore will be trying to do after her most unwanted of feats last night.
Playing against USA in the She Believes Cup, Moore scored a hat-trick OF OWN GOALS - worth capping up, italicising and emboldening - inside 36 minutes.
A pretty traumatic experience as far as on-pitch footballing experiences go, so let’s hope she can get over it – although no surprises to see she was subbed off shortly after.

IN OTHER NEWS

Jack’s back

Without a club since last summer after departing Bournemouth, Jack Wilshere’s back and determined to give football another go with Danish side Aarhus Gymnastikforening.
Wilshere said: "Since I started training with Arsenal, I have never hidden the fact that it was to be ready for 2022 and for a new club. Now the right club is here, and it will be an exciting new challenge for me.
"I am in a place in my career where I need to get started again after a difficult period and that opportunity AGF has offered me. For that I am very grateful, and I will do everything I can to live up to the expectations."
Better football than acting, if the unveiling video is anything to go by.

IN THE CHANNELS

Exactly the sort of celebration you'd expect from someone who's been struck by a coin then scores a goal that puts their side out of sight on the road.
Fair play, Anthony Elanga.

RETRO CORNER

To celebrate GB’s curling gold, we were thinking a compilation of David Beckham’s best crosses or free-kicks, you know, some hilarious football-related play on curling, so here you are…

COMING UP

Barely anything! No, really. And with the Winter Olympics over as well it’s a fairly quiet day at Eurosport HQ. Probably for the best, and we go again with the Champions League tomorrow.
Premier League
Andersen reports messages of abuse to police after Nunez red card
16/08/2022 AT 18:09
Premier League
'Concerning is maybe not the right word' - Ten Hag on Ronaldo absence
22/07/2022 AT 10:20