Birmingham fined £42,500 over fan who punched Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish during Second City derby

17 Sep

The Football Association has fined Birmingham £42,500 after a fan ran on to the pitch and punched Aston Villa midfielder Jack Grealish during the Second City derby at St Andrew’s in March.

Paul Mitchell was sentenced to 14 weeks in prison after admitting charges of assault and encroachment onto the pitch towards the end of last season.

Paul Mitchell struck Grealish around the head during the Second City derby earlier this year
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An independent Regulatory Commission found the club failed to ensure fans ‘conducted themselves in an orderly fashion and/or refrained from improper and/or violent behaviour and/or refrained from encroaching onto the pitch area.’

Mitchell was given a 10-year football banning order and Birmingham banned him for life from St Andrew’s.

The FA confirmed the news in a statement which confirmed the club had been found guilty of breaching FA rules.

“An independent Regulatory Commission has fined Birmingham City FC £42,500 and warned them as to their future conduct.

“The club submitted it used all due diligence but was found to have failed to ensure that its spectator[s], and all persons purporting to be its supporters or followers, conducted themselves in an orderly fashion and/or refrained from improper and/or violent behaviour and/or refrained from encroaching onto the pitch area during the EFL Championship fixture against Aston Villa on 10 March 2019.”

Villa ended up winning the match, with Grealish going on to score the all-important goal in a 1-0 victory.

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Arsenal loanee Eddie Nketiah is ‘a complete player’, says Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa

15 Sep

Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa has hailed Arsenal youngster Eddie Nketiah as ‘a complete player’.

The 20-year-old striker has scored four goals in six appearances since joining Leeds on loan last month.

Eddie Nketiah has made a blistering start to his Leeds career
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And his latest strike came in the Whites’ 2-0 win at Yorkshire rivals Barnsley on Sunday.

While comparing Nketiah to Patrick Bamford, who appeared unhappy after being replaced in the 70th minute, Bielsa said: “Eddie has different characteristics, and in a match like that he is a good option.

“Some players are involved (in play) a lot before creating chances. Nketiah is more involved at the end of the action but he has good characteristics to combine with his team-mates to give us these options.

Patrick Bamford was unhappy after being substituted for Eddie Nketiah in the 70th minute at Barnsley
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“He is a striker who can score goals. For me, he is a complete player.”

Nketiah is yet to start a Championship game with Bamford leading the line for Leeds.

Bamford has netted four league goals so far this season, but was denied three times by Barnsley goalkeeper Brad Collins.

Bielsa added: “He puts in a lot of effort to be in a good condition to score, and he had a lot of chances in this game.

“I tried to explain to him that he deserved a goal. He is a great centre-forward.”

Championship results: Leeds United go top with late win over Barnsley, Huddersfield lose to Sheffield Wednesday in battle of new managers

15 Sep

Eddie Nketiah was the super sub for Leeds United as his late header and Mateusz Klich’s penalty sealed a dramatic win over Barnsley to lift them to the top of the Championship.

Marcelo Bielsa’s side looked to be heading for a goalless draw, with striker Patrick Bamford kicking himself after missing a number of gilt-edged chances.

Mateusz Klich celebrates scoring the second Leeds goal against Barnsley from the penalty spot at Oakwell Stadium
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But the luckless number nine was replaced by Arsenal loanee Nketiah on 69 minutes and the substitute changed the game for the visitors.

The 20-year-old finally put Leeds in front with an instinctive finish from a set piece on 83 minutes, and then won a penalty for his side after he was felled in the area.

There was a three-player battle to take the spot kick, with Nketiah, Pablo Hernandez and Mateusz Klich all vying to take it. But captain Liam Cooper ran the length of the pitch to have his say and place the ball in the hands of designated taker Klich, who slotted in nonchalantly to wrap up the late three points.

It was a game wrought with frustration for the Whites, who didn’t dominate the game as they usually do. Barnsley worked hard to keep them at bay and produced good chances of their own, but their players were obviously tiring at the end.

It appeared Leeds would be left to rue their missed chances, with Bamford and Hernandez both going close before Nketiah came off the bench to settle the tie.

The win sees Leeds climb to the top of the Championship table, leapfrogging Swansea City on goal difference with 16 points.

Barnsley remain a place above relegation, again on goal difference, having yet to win a game this season.

It was another frustrating afternoon for Patrick Bamford, who could not add to his tally of four Leeds goals this season
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In the afternoon’s other clash, Huddersfield Town were beaten by Sheffield Wednesday in the battle of the new Yorkshire managers.

Danny Cowley with his brother and assistant Nicky could not guide the Terriers to their first win of the season as they lost 2-0 at home, as Garry Monk enjoyed a winning start in charge of the Owls.

Huddersfield have endured a miserable start to the season following their relegation from the Premier League, with Jan Siewert sacked on August 16 after claiming just one win in seven months as manager.

Garry Monk enjoyed a winning start to his career as Sheffield Wednesday manager
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And, although there were positives for new boss Cowley, that run continued as Steven Fletcher’s tenth-minute header and Sam Winnall’s first goal since December 2017 wrapped up the win for Wednesday.

Huddersfield remain second from bottom of the Championship with just one point from their first seven matches of the season.

Sheffield Wednesday moved back up into the top ten with their win at the John Smith’s Stadium taking them to 12 points, four points off the top of the table.

Results:

Barnsley 0-2 Leeds United

Huddersfield Town 0-2 Sheffield Wednesday

Championship results: Charlton and Swansea unbeaten starts comes to an end, 10-man Stoke lose to Bristol City

14 Sep

Charlton and Swansea saw their unbeaten starts to the Championship season come to an end on Saturday.

The Addicks were beaten 1-0 by Birmingham, whose match winner was 16-year-old Jude Bellingham as Valley boss Lee Bowyer was sent off late on, while the pressure continues to pile on Stoke boss Nathan Jones.

Steve Cooper’s Swansea fell to defeat against Nottingham Forest
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The Potters got off to the perfect start when Sam Clucas gave them a fourth-minute lead, however, their joy was shortlived after Joe Allen was given a straight red card for a poor challenge on Josh Brownhill.

And the man advantage paid dividends for the Robins, who secured the three points thanks to Famara Diedhiou’s strike and a Tom Edwards own goal in the second-half.

Meanwhile, Swansea suffered late heartache following Alfa Semedo’s 85th-minute strike in a smash and grab 1-0 win at the Liberty Stadium.

The slip-ups from Charlton and Swansea mean Leeds could return to the top of the Championship table if they beat Yorkshire rivals Barnsley on Sunday.

Here are all the results from the day’s action.

Results

Fulham 1-1 West Brom

Blackburn 2-0 Millwall

Charlton 0-1 Birmingham

Hull 2-2 Wigan

Middlesbrough 1-0 Reading

Preston 2-0 Brentford

QPR 3-2 Luton

Stoke 1-2 Bristol City

Swansea 0-1 Nottingham Forest

Late Semi Ajayi equaliser extends West Brom’s unbeaten league start after draw at Fulham

14 Sep

Semi Ajayi’s late equaliser earned West Brom a point in a 1-1 draw with promotion rivals Fulham on Saturday.

The defender capitalised on a Marcus Bettinelli error to tap into an empty net, which cancelled out Anthony Knockaert’s 49th-minute opener.

Scott Parker will be under pressure if results don’t start to pick up
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The result extends Fulham’s winless run to four games, while West Brom maintain their unbeaten start to the Championship season.

More to follow…

FA to investigate Derby vs Cardiff incident following Pride Park Stadium evacuation due to flares being set off in away end

14 Sep

An investigation into an incident which led to a stadium evacuation at Derby County’s home ground is under way, the Football Association has confirmed.

Pride Park was evacuated before the Rams’ Championship clash against Cardiff City on Friday night and The Sun has said the governing body are probing the incident.

It is understood that flares were set off by Cardiff fans in the away end which meant the 25,873 crowd were forced to leave the ground just before kick-off.

This is the first time flares have caused a whole stadium to be evacuated in England.

It left supporters stunned when the public announcer informed everyone they had to leave.

The message said: “Attention please, this is an emergency. Please leave the stadium by the nearest available exit.”

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There were also reports of fans without tickets walking back in through the fire exits while paying punters made their way back in.

The match finished 1-1 with Derby man Scott Malone scoring against his former club on six minutes.

However, Phillip Cocu’s side were pegged back with German striker Robert Glatzel scoring a penalty after being fouled by Richard Keogh in the box.

The result leaves Derby without a win in their last six matches in all competitions, while Neil Warnock’s side have drawn their last three in the league.

Glatzel celebrates his first goal in Cardiff colours
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Fulham vs West Brom LIVE commentary: Full talkSPORT coverage and confirmed line-ups for Championship clash

14 Sep

Fulham host West Brom in the early Championship kick-off this Saturday and it will be live on talkSPORT 2.

Both sides are in the play-off places in the table and have been in good form prior to the international break.

Scott Parker’s Fulham face West Brom today
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Now they are set to face off in west London having not played since their 1-1 Premier League draw back in February 2014.

Who will come out on top tonight? talkSPORT 2 will bring you all the action live and exclusive.

Fulham vs West Brom: How to listen

The Championship clash will get under way at 12:30pm on Saturday, September 14.

Full commentary from Craven Cottage will be live on talkSPORT 2 with Dan Windle, Nigel Adderley and Shaun Derry providing our coverage from 11am.

To tune in, just click here for the live stream or click the radio player below.

You can also listen through the talkSPORT App, on DAB Digital Radio or on MW 1053 or 1089.

For more information about how to listen LIVE on talkSPORT click here.

Fulham vs West Brom: What has been said?

Fulham head coach Scott Parker: “Overall, after six games, we’re pleased with the way it’s gone.

“Last year, we were used to losing games and it became a bit of a habit, but now we’re in a league where we’re expected to do something. I’m happy with the way we’ve started.

“We got off to a slow start, but we bounced back with some very good results in a very tough league. We all understand how tough this league is.”

West Brom boss Slaven Bilic: “It is the most difficult game but it is not like so far we have not played good teams yet. We have played against some top teams like Derby away and Forest away.

“What makes the Championship a big and interesting league is it is pretty much even and every game is a massive test for you, so I don’t see it any different.

“We can talk about Fulham, that last year they were in the Premier League, but they are not cruising. For them it is also a big test for the players. It is a big game.”

West Brom boss Slaven Bilic
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Fulham vs West Brom: Line-ups

Fulham: Bettinelli, Sessegnon, Mawson, Ream, Bryan, Cairney, Reed, Reid, Knockaert, Mitrovic, Cavaleiro.

Subs: Odoi, McDonald, Johansen, Rodak, Le Marchand, Onomah, Kamara.

West Brom: Johnstone, Furlong, Ajayi, Bartley, Ferguson, Sawyers, Livermore, Phillips, Pereira, Diangana, Austin.

Subs: Robson-Kanu, Krovinovic, Zohore, Brunt, Edwards, Bond, O’Shea.

Referee: David Webb

Robert Glatzel’s first Cardiff City goal earns Neil Warnocks men point against struggling Derby

13 Sep

Derby’s winless run now stretches to six games after they could only muster a 1-1 draw with Cardiff on Friday night.

The hosts took the lead inside six minutes through Scott Malone, taking the Rams four attempts in total to finally stick the ball beyond Alex Smithies.

Robert Glatzel rescued a point for Cardiff on the road at Derby
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Replays later showed the goal should have been disallowed, as Waghorn handled the ball in the build-up to the goal

The visitors responded strongly and soon levelled. Robert Glatzel went to receive the ball inside the area, but Richard Keogh hauled him to the deck with the referee pointing to the spot.

Glatzel stepped up to take the penalty and thumped the ball past Kelle Roos for his first goal for the Bluebirds and earn the visitors a point.

More to follow…

 

Derby vs Cardiff LIVE commentary: Full talkSPORT coverage and confirmed line-ups for Championship clash

13 Sep

Championship action returns tonight as Derby host Cardiff and it will be live on talkSPORT 2.

Phillip Cocu’s Rams need a win this evening after going five games without one before the international break.

Neil Warnock’s Cardiff take on Derby tonight

Cardiff are in mid-table having drawn their last two outings and are looking for their first away win of the season.

Derby won this clash 3-1 two seasons ago while Cardiff claimed a 4-3 win at Pride Park in February 2017.

Who will come out on top tonight? talkSPORT 2 will bring you all the action live and exclusive.

Derby vs Cardiff: How to listen

The Championship clash will get under way at 7:45pm on Friday, September 13.

Full commentary from Pride Park will be live on talkSPORT 2 with Nigel Adderley and Matt Murray and our coverage will start at 6pm.

To tune in, just click here for the live stream or click the radio player below.

You can also listen through the talkSPORT App, on DAB Digital Radio or on MW 1053 or 1089.

For more information about how to listen LIVE on talkSPORT click here.

Derby vs Cardiff: What has been said?

Derby County boss Phillip Cocu: “Their manager has a lot of experience, he has had success in the Championship so it will be a difficult game.

“The short history between the clubs also make it maybe a little bit bigger game for the club and the fans. That is something we realise.

“We had a good break, there is a good feeling and good work done so we are very positive about the game.”

Cardiff City boss Neil Warnock: “We’ve had a bit of an indifferent break. Good for the longer term injuries but we’ve had a few other knocks to contend with over the break. It’s not been easy at all.

“I had a team in mind for Derby County and sadly because of this situation it won’t be that. In management you can’t plan too far ahead. Defensively – thankfully we haven’t been decimated with problems.

“We’ve done our homework on them and we’ll be trying for that first away win.”

Phillip Cocu’s Derby host Cardiff this evening
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Derby vs Cardiff: Confirmed Line-ups

Derby: Roos, Bielik, Keogh, Waghorn, Lawrence, Marriott, Clarke, Holmes, Lowe, Huddlestone, Malone

Subs: Hamer, Paterson, Dowell, Jozefzoon, Martin, Davies, Knight

Cardiff: Smithies, Peltier, Morrison, Flint, Bennett, Bacuna, Ralls, Paterson, Whyte, Murphy, Glatzel

Subs: Day, Vaulks, Nelson, Vassell, Mendez-Laing, Hoilett, Bogle

Derby County owner Mel Morris hits back at Middlesbrough and insists Rams have ‘done nothing wrong’ in Pride Park stadium sale

13 Sep

Chairman Mel Morris insists Derby County have done ‘nothing wrong’ and are ‘very comfortable’ with their deal to sell Pride Park to a company also under his ownership.

The Rams boss joined talkSPORT on Friday to respond to claims Championship rivals Middlesbrough are threatening to sue the English Football League over the £80million deal made earlier this year.

Boro claim the League failed to enforce its own financial rules when Derby sold Pride Park to a sister company owned by Morris, who now lease it back to the club.

Pride Park is now owned by Morris and leased back to the club
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The Rams beat the Teesside outfit to a top six finish by one point last season, and Boro allege the stadium deal which rescued Derby’s finances effectively cost them a place in last season’s play-offs, and the chance of securing Premier League promotion and a potential £180m windfall that goes with it.

Derby have been accused by rivals of exploiting a loophole in EFL rules that allows owners to buy their own stadium to make the club financially compliant.

Morris joined talkSPORT host Jim White to respond to those accusations on Friday, and he insisted everything was done above board and no loopholes were exploited.

And he also sent a message to Boro chairman Steve Gibson, telling the chief to stop moaning about the rules and personally call him if he has a problem.

The chairman said: “We’ve done nothing wrong. We’re very comfortable with what we’ve done. The valuation, in our opinion, was fair and reasonable.

“We didn’t use a loophole. Let’s be very clear on this, there is no loophole here. The rules are extremely specific on this, that the sale of a fixed asset is allowable. It’s a single sentence. It is allowable.

“The bottom line is we’ve approached this very professionally. It was nearly 18 months ago now when we looked about utilising the stadium for other purposes during the season, that was the genesis of it.”

Asked if the club would have been in breach of Financial Fair Play regulations had they not completed the stadium sale, Morris also insisted there was nothing unusual about the deal.

“You plan your whole finances around the pieces that are moving,” he explained.

“If you sell a player for £50m and you utilise the funds of that to fund the purchase of another year, is it any different? If you sell the stadium of course you’re going to utilise that, which is what we did.”

Middlesbrough chairman Steve Gibson is not happy with Derby County
Getty

Morris revealed he invited Gibson to take a look at Derby’s financial records to see for himself that the deal was lawful, but he declined the offer.

He also accused the chairman of double standards, pointing out that Boro would have lost out and Derby benefited if the EFL nullified Bolton’s results when they were placed into administration last season – and the Rams didn’t moan when they weren’t.

“It’s entirely down to Steve what he does,” added Morris. “If he feels he’s got a case than he needs to pursue that, which is fine.

“We offered for Steve to come and take a look at our books, but he declined to take us up on that.

“At the end of the day, it’s in the rules. If the rules are there for a purpose, that’s fine. If you don’t like the rules, change them, but don’t moan.

“When Bolton were going through their troubles, if the rule book had been followed then Bolton would have had their results expunged for the season.

Morris insists Derby have done nothing wrong and have followed EFL rules closely
getty

“If it had happened, the biggest beneficiary of the clubs in contention for the top six would have been Derby and the biggest losers would have been Middlesbrough because they beat them in both legs.

“But did we moan? Did we moan to the EFL to say it’s unfair and you should be getting rid of Bolton because we would benefit from it? No!

“What we said was, ‘God bless you for doing that and whatever you need to do to keep these clubs going, I support’.

“Steve is a great owner and deserves a lot of applause for what he’s done with Boro. I don’t know what’s got his goat with this, but he can always pick the phone up and talk to me.”

Listen back to talkSPORT’s interview with Derby County owner Mel Morris IN FULL above