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Author Archive for Nick Miller

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Belgium have the squad, Spain the swagger – but who will win in Russia?

Saudia Arabia are 2,000-1, but the chances are one of the top six in the bookies’ odds will lift the World Cup on 15 JulyHow do you build a team around a player without being reliant on h im? The tightrope that Jorge Sampaoli has to tread with Lionel M…

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Hungary v Australia: international friendly – live!

Updates from the match at Groupama Arena in BudapestFeel free to get in touch on email or tweet @NickMiller79 3.24pm BST Listening to and reading some of the previews from around the globe, it doesn’t seem like there’s a huge amount of optimism ahead o…

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Football while fasting: life in the Ramadan Midnight League | Nick Miller

An idea to help people who might not otherwise feel able to play during Ramadan is gathering momentum in BirminghamJust after 10pm on a warm Friday evening Obayed Hussain stands outside the Aston Villa academy building, the North Stand of Villa Park lo…

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Football transfer rumours: will Liverpool pay £80m for Jan Oblak?

Today’s fluff is just about hereIs £80m a lot of money? Obviously, in the real world, it is. But is it really in the context of football? Around a third of the world transfer record? Is that a lot? In some contexts a tenner is a huge amount, so what’s …

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Fred can be the Red that José Mourinho has been looking for | Nick Miller

The Brazil midfielder, comfortable as destroyer and creator, could form part of a thrilling and penetrative attacking unitManchester United have made a habit of getting creative when unveiling signings in recent years. Stormzy was called in to help ann…

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Zinedine Zidane steps down at Real Madrid – live updates and reaction!

Frenchman steps down after winning three Champions League titlesDecision was announced at a news conference at the Santiago BernabéuThoughts on the news? You can email or tweet @NickMiller79 12.25pm BST Stop blubbing excessively, Madridistas, he could…

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Fulham try to lift onus off Ryan Sessegnon in bid to overhaul Derby

The gifted teenager and his teammates will need to shake off Derby’s semi-final first-leg shackles and a 1-0 deficit if they are to reach WembleyRyan Sessegnon turns 18 on Friday. Not old enough to get a tattoo, but old enough to face the muscular men …

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Hamburg suffer historic relegation and leave Bundesliga with a bang

A 2-1 home victory against Mönchengladbach was in vain for the Bundesliga’s only ever-present club thanks to Wolfsburg’s win, and fireworks and flares rained down at the endThe city of Hamburg has seen significant regeneration in the last decade. In an…

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Shaun Barker bids farewell after showing playing is not everything

The defender is retiring six years after his knee was smashed with Derby. He battled back at Burton, where his influence was far greater than his few substitute appearancesAt the end of the season a 35-year-old Burton Albion defender who has made only …

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Cardiff may not be liked but Neil Warnock’s achievement is extraordinary

The promotion king has forged a rugged, uncompromising and successful side from a bunch of misfits and the Premier League is in for an uncomfortable rideA day after Stoke City, a team who used to revel in their status as unpopular underdogs, were releg…

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Neil Warnock: ‘I haven’t had a fair crack of the Premier League whip’

Neil Warnock prefers the ‘muck and nettles’ of the Championship to the top flight but a record eighth promotion of his managerial career, this time with Cardiff, would suit him just fineNot long after Neil Warnock was named the Cardiff manager, his wif…

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World Cup stunning moments: Luis Suárez bites Giorgio Chiellini in 2014 | Nick Miller

Before the 2014 World Cup, Suárez had been on a PR campaign – but that lasted for about two hours of play in stifling Natal In the first half of Uruguay’s final group game against Italy at the 2014 World Cup, Luis Suárez launched a late, clumsy challen…

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Leonardo Bonucci says Italy need to take a leaf out of England’s book

• Captain says future is in the hands of country’s young players • ‘We need to understand that Italy starts not very far from zero’The Italy captain, Leonardo Bonucci, is looking to England’s example as his team try to rebuild in the wake of their fail…

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From Luke Shaw to Marc Albrighton: 10 underrated Premier League players | Nick Miller

Not every top-flight player gets the plaudits they deserve – here we have a look at some of those who fly under the radarAt various points during their title-winning season, praise was shared around the Leicester side. Jamie Vardy, N’Golo Kanté and Riy…

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Martin Allen: ‘I’ve been doing pilates. Now it’s back into the madhouse’

The manager has returned to Barnet for a fifth spell, aiming to keep the club in League Two. He discusses ‘mission impossible’, his heart scare and why he never talks to the chairmanMartin Allen was enjoying a nice quiet life until last Sunday. “I’ve b…

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The Fiver | Jaap’s terror stare

Sign up now! Sign up now! Sign up now? Sign up now!The Fiver isn’t one for courage. We’re usually too deep in our pit of despair to get involved in any of that caper, generally too afeared to emerge from our Tin-strewn bedsit for more than 10 minutes, …

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The Fiver | Good luck to the English Franz Smuda

Sign up now! Sign up now! Sign up now? Sign up now!As you will obviously already know, Franz Smuda is manager of Widzew Lodz in the Polish third tier. He’s doing very nicely too, taking the side famous for pulling Manchester United’s pants down all tho…

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Football transfer rumours: Luke Shaw to leave Manchester United?

Today’s fluff is all wrapped upLike a child who can’t live with his classmates having better sweets, Real Madrid don’t like other clubs having nice things. With that in mind, they’re planning to lure Robert Lewandowski from Bayern Munich this summer an…

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Quality of Gross shows Brighton’s prowess in profiting from incomers | Nick Miller

Chris Hughton spent £40m on eight players in the summer – for a promoted team to build a competitive top-flight squad for that money looks almost like witchcraftIt takes Neymar just under six weeks to earn £3m. This season the Chinese side Meixian Tech…

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Arsenal v Milan: Europa League last 16 – live!

Europa League updates from the second leg (first leg: 2-0)Live scoreboard: the latest from Thursday’s Europa League tiesAnd email Nick here or tweet him here with your thoughts 7.08pm GMT That looks like a pretty attacking Milan side, and so it should …