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Author Archive for Paul Wilson

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I won’t miss ludicrous and intrusive VAR, football’s equivalent of Brexit | Paul Wilson

After three decades reporting on the game for the Observer and Guardian, I’m bowing out. Here’s a parting shot, along with a few cherished memoriesWhen I joined the Observer in 1990 the country was just rediscovering its love of the national game, than…

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Eric Cantona saga epitomises the Manchester United-Leeds rivalry | Paul Wilson

The number of big names to play for both sides is remarkable – but none made a bigger impact than the only player to have won titles with themManchester United versus Leeds will always be one of the most evocative fixtures in top-flight English footbal…

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Eric Cantona saga epitomises the Manchester United-Leeds rivalry | Paul Wilson

The number of big names to play for both sides is remarkable – but none made a bigger impact than the only player to have won titles with themManchester United versus Leeds will always be one of the most evocative fixtures in top-flight English footbal…

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Ole Gunnar Solskjær says United are up for physical battle against Leeds

‘Leeds are so fit, they are going to push us to the edge’Manager says it is too early to talk about title chancesOle Gunnar Solskjær expects an intense game against Leeds, a side he rates as the fittest in the Premier League. “We know it is going to be…

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‘It would kill me to be relegated’: Sam Allardyce begins latest escape bid

West Brom’s new manager is proud of never being relegated from the Premier League and happy to be back in managementSay what you like about Sam Allardyce, and people have been doing exactly that all week, he is not one to shirk a challenge. Most manage…

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Liverpool’s fit and firing front-three ready to give Wolves stern test

Jürgen Klopp has injury problems elsewhere on the pitch, but his forward line is bursting with energy and goalsDiogo Jota was man of the match when Wolves played at Anfield last December, even if he did miss a couple of chances that might have allowed …

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Roberto Firmino shows time is on his side in Liverpool cameo | Paul Wilson

The Brazilian forward delivered nothing overtly spectacular against Ajax but, in his brief time on the Anfield pitch, made his presence feltJürgen Klopp is too busy, bothered and generally bad-tempered these days to play silly games with selection just…

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Edinson Cavani’s storming display ends debate about his signing

Eyebrows were raised when the 33-year-old striker joined Manchester United but he turned the game at SouthamptonManchester United continue to divide opinion, not least between the two managers prowling the technical areas at St Mary’s. Ole Gunnar Solsk…

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Bruno Fernandes’s mentality powering Manchester United rise, says Solskjær

Manchester United manager: ‘We can all learn from his mindset’Solskjær says team are getting their consistency backOle Gunnar Solskjær believes Manchester United are getting their consistency back, pointing to their away form and their last three wins,…

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Bruno Fernandes’s mentality powering Manchester United rise, says Solskjær

Manchester United manager: ‘We can all learn from his mindset’Solskjær says team are getting their consistency backOle Gunnar Solskjær believes Manchester United are getting their consistency back, pointing to their away form and their last three wins,…

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Liverpool were ‘on fire’ against Leicester, says delighted Jürgen Klopp

Liverpool club record of 64 unbeaten home league games set‘We played an incredible game against top, top opponents’Jürgen Klopp was full of praise for his Liverpool side as they set a record of 64 league games unbeaten at Anfield, even though they were…

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Jürgen Klopp wary of threat posed by Jamie Vardy’s ‘risks and gambles’

Liverpool must cope with Leicester without key defendersLeicester striker is a ‘proper, proper player’, says KloppJürgen Klopp has been asked about managing Germany before, but not too often after witnessing a 6-0 defeat at the hands of Spain. The Live…

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Wayne Rooney in favour of investigating links between heading and dementia

Derby player-coach wants more research into effects of headingRooney part of coaching group after Phillip Cocu’s departureWayne Rooney has thrown his weight behind the campaign to investigate the links between football and later-life dementia, revealin…

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All to play for as Premier League season finally gets to stretch its legs

Games come thick and fast between now and the new year, which is exciting but also spells doom for certain managersIf the Premier League season does not feel like it has properly got going yet it is probably because the first segment of eight matchdays…

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Ray Clemence always seemed to be in the right place at the right time | Paul Wilson

Gracefully athletic goalkeeper, who has died aged 72, was one of England’s finest goalkeepers and a legend at Liverpool and SpursRay Clemence was not just one of the finest goalkeepers England has ever produced, he was a link back to the time when foot…

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Showdown at Liverpool will gauge Leicester’s title credentials | Paul Wilson

A repeat of their remarkable 2015-16 Premier League triumph would not be at 5,000-1 but Leicester have credentials and a chance to enhance them significantly at Liverpool next SundayLeicester’s title triumph of 2015?16, the one that had bookmakers begg…

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England no longer fear the world’s top sides, says Gareth Southgate

Manager says 2018 World Cup was watershed momentTeam ready for tactical challenge of BelgiumGareth Southgate has challenged his England players to win their next two games against Belgium and Iceland and top their Nations League group.Sunday night’s ma…

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England blessed to have Reece James and Alexander-Arnold, says Southgate

Manager praises crop of full-backs, especially on the rightJames likely to start against Republic of Ireland on ThursdayGareth Southgate believes England are blessed with their current crop of attacking full-backs or wing-backs, going as far as to argu…

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Manchester City trip brings back memories of title hangover for Klopp

‘It was not an ideal time to play City’ says the Liverpool manager of their 4-0 defeat days after clinching the titleJürgen Klopp has mixed memories of his last trip to face Manchester City at the Etihad. On the one hand there was the guard of honour f…

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Ole Gunnar Solskjær unconcerned at Manchester United’s league position

Club in bottom half of table before Arsenal’s visitManager believes season will be tight and unpredictableOle Gunnar Solskjær is philosophical about Manchester United lying in the bottom half of the table as they prepare for Sunday’s visit of Arsenal. …