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Mata jokes after eating turf

The Toe Poke

Arsenal must remain focused


W2W4: Mourinho returns; MLS Decision Day

Five Aside
ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Trending: Jose Mourinho hits back at 'Einsteins'; Inter eye Pablo Zabaleta

The ESPN FC crew have little faith in Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte sending their squads out to attack on Sunday.
Jose Mourinho says Paul Pogba has not been discouraged, despite recent criticism of Man United's big-money signing.

Here are the latest stories for Friday.

MAN UNITEDManchester United manager Jose Mourinho hit back at "Einsteins" after Paul Pogba scored twice in a 4-1 win over Fenerbahce on Thursday, saying that the critics would rapidly change their opinions.

- Michael Owen has questioned former teammate Wayne Rooney's decision to allow Paul Pogba and Anthony Martial to take penalties.

- Mourinho has admitted he does not feel "lucky" at Stamford Bridge any longer, as he prepares to face Chelsea...

 By Chris Wright

Juan Mata jokes after eating turf during Man Utd vs. Fenerbahce

A Paul Pogba first-half double helped Manchester United on their way to a 4-1 thrashing of Turkish side, Fenerbahce.
Jose Mourinho says Paul Pogba has not been discouraged, despite recent criticism of Man United's big-money signing.

After Juan Mata was brought down in the area to give Manchester United the first of their penalties against Fenerbahce, it appeared at first glance as though the Spanish forward managed to emerge largely unscathed.

However, replays duly showed that he did receive a rather painful looking face-full of the Old Trafford turf as he was bundled over by defender Simon Kjaer.

Diego Simeone and Jorge Sampaoli clash may never have happened

ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno explains why he believes Atletico Madrid will 'win big' over Sevilla on Sunday.

Two of world football's most highly-rated managers clash on Sunday as Diego Simeone's La Liga leading Atletico Madrid visit Jorge Sampaoli's high-flying Sevilla.

The game at the Estadio Sanchez Pizjuan will be the first time the two Argentine coaches have ever faced off over 90 minutes. But almost six years ago Sampaoli and Simeone shared a "sliding doors" moment which marked both their lives and also impacted hugely on the development of both club and international football ever since.

In December...

John Brewin profile picture  By John Brewin

Will Henrikh Mkhitaryan get a second chance at Manchester United?

Jose Mourinho says Henrikh Mkhitaryan has to fight for his place in his squad after missing out against Fenerbahce.

On Tuesday, Chelsea loanee Juan Cuadrado scored Juventus' goal in their 1-0 Champions League win at Lyon. The following night, Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola decided he preferred Kevin De Bruyne as a "false No. 9" to selecting star striker Sergio Aguero at Barcelona. On Thursday, Mohamed Salah was launched from the bench while Roma were pegged back by Austria Vienna to draw 3-3. All that followed Romelu Lukaku scoring Everton's goal in their 1-1 draw at City last Saturday.

It is not difficult...

 By Alex Crook

Southampton youth can take heart from Sam McQueen's rise under Puel

In the last meeting, Sadio Mane's hat trick paved the way in Southampton's 4-2 win over Man City.
Sam McQueen
Sam McQueen has taken his chance with both hands.

It was a brutal putdown designed to have maximum impact on the Southampton hierarchy and supporters alike. An unexpected sideswipe at the latest graduates of the club's highly-acclaimed youth academy, dished out by Ronald Koeman in the middle of an otherwise unspectacular news conference to a stunned audience.

"I wasn't impressed," said then-manager Koeman when asked for his assessment of a recent under-21 game he had watched January 2015. "I look to the development of young players and they still...

 By Simon Curtis

Manchester City need to shake off poor run and spectre of past history

Are Roma in pursuit of three City full-backs and can Guardiola afford to lose so many defenders?

The history of Manchester City has plenty of trials and tribulations. Up until a few years ago, the club was seen as one that would gleefully shoot itself in the foot whenever the opportunity arose. With the steady advance of time, however, things have begun to change. In fact, almost everything has changed at City.

With the succession from Mark Hughes, to Roberto Mancini, on through Manuel Pellegrini to Pep Guardiola in what used to be the very hottest of managerial hot seats, City's face and image...