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Tammy Abraham, Christian Pulisic score as Chelsea hold off Watford

Striker Tammy Abraham scored one goal and Christian Pulisic added another as Chelsea beat Watford 2-1 at Vicarage Road in the Premier League on Saturday, with Ben Foster putting on a superb display between the posts for the home side despite the defeat.

Abraham latched on to a brilliant defence-splitting pass by Jorginho and lifted the ball past Foster in the fifth minute to join Leicester’s Jamie Vardy and Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero as top scorers with nine goals each so far this season.new nike nfl jerseys cheap

Foster bounced back from the concession of that early goal to pull off a string of superb first-half saves from Abraham, Pulisic and Mason Mount to keep his side in the game.6

He made another great stop from Mount early in the second half, but there was little he could do in the 55th minute when Abraham pulled the ball back across the box for Pulisic to slam home from close range to double Chelsea’s advantage.

“I want to make an impact for the team and I am enjoying it a lot. I want to prove every week that I deserve to be in the starting line-up,” Pulisic said after the game.cheap nfl nike jerseys china

Watford nearly snatched an unlikely point as Gerard Deulofeu scored a late penalty and Foster almost headed home a late free kick as the Hornets threw everybody forward, but his opposite number Kepa clawed the ball away as the final whistle went.

“That’s the closest I have ever come to scoring. I can’t believe he saved it but that’s why they spend so much money on a goalkeeper like Kepa,” the 36-year-old Foster told Sky Sports, adding that he thought his side had deserved a draw.

Chelsea’s fifth consecutive league win lifts them to third place in the table on 23 points, eight behind leaders Liverpool and two behind second-placed Manchester City, while winless Watford remain bottom on five points after 11 games.

Liverpool’s confidence and persistence yields another dramatic win but title race has far to go

When Trent Alexander-Arnold readied to take a corner as the clock ticked down at Villa Park, with seconds left in his 100th appearance for Liverpool, there was apprehension among the home supporters and expectation in the away end.

It was the 95th minute, seven after Andy Robertson cancelled out Trezeguet’s first-half opener for Aston Villa and there were just 60 seconds remaining for the league leaders to rescue three points. Liverpool were several levels below their best, without rhythm or surety in their play, all afternoon and the fixture was ready to be filed under “just one of those days.”cheap nike nfl jersey

“We made it difficult for ourselves,” Jurgen Klopp admitted post-match. “We started playing football good but not exactly like we should have done. Aston Villa were ready today for a proper fight, a proper battle, defend with all they have, try to find spaces for counter-attacks and be there and have good set pieces.4

“We played good football, but didn’t finish the situations and then we conceded a goal, then it is not so easy to change these wrong decisions, this wrong path, immediately. We needed a bit of time.”

Liverpool’s poor decision-making aligned with marginal calls — Villa’s goal was ruled just onside by VAR, but Roberto Firmino’s armpit (yes, you read that correctly) was deemed to be offside when he had the ball in the back of the net — compounded the sense that it may not quite be their afternoon. But in those dying moments, the emotions of both fan bases were understandable. Dean Smith’s men have ceded 11 points in games in which they have gone ahead this season, more than any other Premier League side. Liverpool, by contrast, are the champions of division in winning points from losing positions.cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale

It turns out that Villa supporters were justified for feeling the way they did: Sadio Mane’s deft header from Alexander-Arnold’s corner dissected Conor Hourihane and Jonathan Kodjia before nestling into the far corner to make it 2-1 to the league leaders.

Prior to that moment, Liverpool did not need to dig that deep or look too far to believe they could conjure another rescue act. They were decisive at the death during a ridiculous 5-5 draw with Arsenal in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday night, in which they triumphed on penalties. Their winner against Leicester City at Anfield last month arrived after 95 minutes. Their equaliser against Manchester United at Old Trafford in the next fixture materialised in the 85th minute. The “Fergie Time” concept, coined when Sir Alex Ferguson’s sides had a habit of producing late goals, has been replaced by “Klopp o’clock.”

Since the start of last season, no other Premier League team has scored more goals in the division during the last 10 minutes than Liverpool’s 23. In September 2017, after his side had conceded 13 goals from seven matches, Klopp admitted that lapses in defence had become “a self-fulfilling prophecy” for them as players got sucked into the narrative around them. That has since been positively replaced by Liverpool’s powers of recovery: since the German labelled his squad “f—ing mentality monsters” in April after Mohamed Salah and Jordan Henderson scored late goals in a 3-1 victory at Southampton, they have continually found ways to win even with time running out.

What Juan Soto, Nationals rocking Gerrit Cole means for this World Series

With Max Scherzer facing Gerrit Cole in Game 1 of the World Series, we had grand visions of an epic pitchers’ duel between the three-time Cy Young winner and the hottest pitcher on the planet.

We didn’t get that. We got something better: a reminder that as much as we try to script what will happen in a baseball game, you can never predict what will happen in a baseball game.china nike nfl jerseys cheap

The Washington Nationals beat the Houston Astros 5-4 in an action-packed thriller Tuesday night, as the two starters combined to allow seven runs and 13 hits over their 12 innings. Juan Soto and George Springer performed heroic feats of strength, and the Nationals’ bullpen huffed and puffed to the end but managed to prevent Washington’s lead from being blown, immediately flipping the script in a World Series in which the Astros entered as the biggest betting favorites since 2007.6

This game will be remembered for 20-year-old super sophomore Soto twice beating Cole in the matchup of the phenom of phenoms against the ace of aces. Soto crushed a 417-foot home run to the opposite field in the fourth inning, then lined a two-run double with two outs — opposite field again — off the wall below the Crawford Boxes in the fifth inning. The first blow tied the score at 2, and the second capped a three-run rally to give the Nationals a 5-2 lead.

The unbeatable Cole, riding a streak of 19 consecutive winning decisions stretching back to May — the Astros hadn’t lost a game started by Cole since July 12 — proved beatable after all. Soto, who hit .188 with seven strikeouts in the Nationals’ sweep in the National League Championship Series, proved why he is too good to go into any extended slump.cheap nfl nike jerseys from china

Before the game, Astros manager AJ Hinch discussed facing the Nationals’ lineup with a 12-man pitching staff of all right-handed pitchers. “Soto is going to be a big part of this series,” Hinch said. That’s not particularly prescient — Soto, after all, is Washington’s cleanup hitter — but there is little doubt that the Nationals’ lineup needs Soto to produce. The Nats beat the St. Louis Cardinals without him doing much, but they’re unlikely to beat the Astros if he hits .188 again.

Juan Soto getting to Gerrit Cole turned the World Series upside down

This being Texas, it was only fitting that Game 1 of the World Series boiled down to a duel. On the pitcher’s mound stood Gerrit Cole, who isn’t a Texan but sure could pass for one: tall, strong, bearded, long hair, bit of a snarl, fastball that touches 100. His weapon was a baseball. Standing 60 feet, 6 inches away was Juan Soto, the perfect foil, a baby-faced 20-year-old from out east, a charismatic, charming, hip-swiveling boo magnet. His weapon was a bat.

Three times they faced off Tuesday night, and all three distilled baseball in 2019 to its most delectable essence. Power vs. power, brains vs. brains, excellence vs. excellence. Major League Baseball exists for these moments because these moments are of what great World Series are made.cheap nfl jerseys china nike

And to see the final score — Washington Nationals 5, Houston Astros 4 — was to see a facsimile of Cole vs. Soto: incredibly close, eminently compelling, loads of fun and stoking a burning desire for more, more, more. The Nationals stole home-field advantage from the Astros by doing to Cole what no team had done in five months: hand him a loss. Amid that, Soto did to Cole what it no longer seemed any man could: make him look mortal too.

Inside the Nationals’ clubhouse, players, coaches, executives — everyone really — was one-upping one another to lavish praise on Soto. How young he is, how poised he is, how everything he is. Nobody described Soto quite like Johnny DiPuglia, the Nationals vice president of international operations.5

“You don’t see dogs playing checkers,” DiPuglia said, and he was right not just that paws aren’t nearly dexterous enough to move checkers pieces but that Soto is that rare sort of beast, someone unique. And not unique like, hey, let’s call him unique because he is good at something or kind of interesting. No: unique, as in a literal one of a kind.china nike nfl jerseys cheap

Soto is bark, bite and double-jumps all in one. He is the only player ever with two seasons of at least 400 at-bats and an on-base percentage of .400 and slugging percentage of .500 before he turned 21. The five others who did it once: Ted Williams, Mel Ott, Jimmie Foxx, Al Kaline, Alex Rodriguez. Hall of Famer, Hall of Famer, Hall of Famer, Hall of Famer, Hall of Fame production.

The first-inning showdown between Cole and Soto, then, was quite the production. Since May 22, Cole had pitched 25 times. In those starts, hitters batted .166, posted a .220 OBP and slugged .300. In other words, over 169⅓ innings, Cole made the average hitter he faced perform like Blake Swihart, who hit .163/.222/.304 this season. Hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of Blake Swiharts.

Juan Soto is no Blake Swihart, though Cole treated him as such in the initial at-bat. First pitch: 97.4 mph, down the middle, up in the zone. Soto swung through it. Next pitch: 98.1 mph, another four-seam fastball, up and on the inside corner. Soto took it. Last pitch: 99.1 mph, paint up and away, at which Soto waved. Three high fastballs, three strikes, see ya next time.

Soto vowed next time would be different. He loves the game and the gamesmanship and everything that goes into the pitcher against the hitter. He harkened back to spring training, where the Nationals and Astros share a complex in West Palm Beach, Florida. He steeled himself for Round 2.

Cowboys’ Brett Maher first kicker to make three 60-yard FGs

Brett Maher became the first kicker in NFL history with three field goals of at least 60 yards with his 63-yarder at the end of the half to give the Cowboys a 27-7 lead over the Philadelphia Eagles.

Maher’s make was also a Cowboys record. He made a 62-yarder against the Eagles last season at AT&T Stadium and a 62-yarder last week against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium.cheap nfl nike jerseys from china5

Maher, only in his second NFL season, was one of three kickers with two kicks of 60 yards or more in their career, along with Greg Zuerlein and Sebastian Janikowski.

Maher’s 63-yarder is the second-longest field goal in NFL history. Matt Prater hit a 64-yarder for the Denver Broncos on Dec 8, 2013. Maher, Tom Dempsey (1970), Jason Elam (1988), Janikowski (2011), David Akers (2012) and Graham Gano (2018) have the only 63-yarders in league history.cheap nike nfl jerseys free shipping

Maher has missed kicks from 55 yards, 54 yards, 33 yards and 40 yards this season, but he is now 2-for-2 from longer than 60 yards.

Villarreal in talks to play La Liga game vs. Atletico Madrid in Miami

La Liga has formally requested permission from the Spanish FA for the Dec. 8 clash between Atletico Madrid and Villarreal to be played in Miami, Florida.

Both clubs are in agreement with the league and Villarreal released a statement on Thursday, stating they will compensate home fans if the location change to the Hard Rock stadium — home of NFL franchise the Miami Dolphins — is approved.

Luis Rubiales, president of the Spanish FA, hinted the organisation will again oppose a league game staged overseas, however, as they have before.

“We could go back in time and give the same comments we gave a year ago,” Rubiales said.cheap nfl jerseys china nike

“There is a FIFA executive committee stance that when a local competition game is played, it is at the stadium of the local team, whereas when it’s regarding a competition in a neutral venue, it can be played away from their stadium.

“We continue to be part of FIFA and UEFA and we continue to have that opinion.”6

Plans to have a league game overseas are part of La Liga’s 15-year marketing agreement with Relevent Sports to promote the game in North America and expand its brand.

Last season, La Liga attempted to stage Girona’s home game against Barcelona in the United States, but even with the support of the two clubs, the plan was rejected by the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), who in turn had FIFA’s backing.

La Liga need the support of the RFEF, as well as Spain’s Sports Council, UEFA, CONCACAF and U.S. Soccer in order to move the game away from Villarreal’s La Ceramica stadium.

“We have to continue to take steps and I would like there to be a general consensus,” Roig said. “I would like for this to happen, but with everyone on board. It’s not good to go against the current.

“There is no impediment by Atletico Madrid, nor by us. [Atletico] are in agreement. We are working so that we reach a good conclusion.”

Sources have told ESPN FC that Atletico coach Diego Simeone is not happy with the situation, but that he understands the club will receive a useful financial boost from it after last summer’s investments on transfers.cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale

According to Thursday’s statement, Villarreal fans will be compensated for missing out on a home game if the location change is confirmed.

Sources: Manchester United’s Alexis Sanchez out until 2020 after ankle surgery

Inter Milan forward Alexis Sanchez has undergone surgery on his left ankle and sources have told ESPN FC he is expected to miss the remainder of the calendar year.

The on-loan Manchester United man suffered an ankle injury during a clash with Juan Cuadrado in Chile’s friendly with Colombia.

“Alexis Sanchez, this morning, saw professor Ramon Cugat in Barcelona for a consultation,” a statement read. “The visit confirmed the diagnosis of Inter’s of Inter’s medical staff and it was decided to proceed with surgical intervention of the left ankle.5

“The surgery of the peroneus longus tendon was then performed in the afternoon and was carried out to perfection.”cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale

Inter forward Sebastiano Esposito, 17, has been left out of the Italy squad for the upcoming Under-17 World Cup which begins on Oct. 26 as Sanchez’s injury has meant he may be needed as cover for the first team.

Sanchez joined Inter on a season-long loan in the summer and made late substitute appearances in the 1-0 wins over Udinese and Lazio.

The 30-year-old’s first start came away at Sampdoria where he scored before a sending off for two bookable offences saw him suspended for the top-of-the-table clash with Juventus, which Inter lost 2-1.cheap nfl jerseys china nike

Sanchez also started the 2-1 defeat to Barcelona in the Champions League.

Aaron Hicks returns to Yankees’ lineup; Giancarlo Stanton still out vs. Astros

Aaron Hicks returned to the Yankees’ starting lineup Tuesday for the first time since Aug. 3, and Giancarlo Stanton remained out for the second straight game when the AL Championship Series resumed with New York and Houston tied 1-1.

Hicks took over in center field and hit ninth against Houston’s Gerrit Cole in New York’s 4-1 Game 3 loss. Previously sidelined by an injured flexor near his right elbow, Hicks pinch hit for starting left fielder Cameron Maybin in Game 2 and grounded out leading off the 10th inning. He then moved to center.

Limited by injuries to 18 games during the regular season, Stanton homered in the opener and missed Game 2 because of a strained right quadriceps.nike nfl jerseys cheap china

“It’s not the best, but I’m able to hit,” Stanton said Tuesday. “We’re at least that far right now. … Time is not on my side right now. Doing what I can.”6

Manager Aaron Boone said Stanton probably would be on the injured list if this were the regular season.

“Kind of called G in right when he got here and just said we’re going to stay away today,” Boone said. “He’s going to get outside and move around a little bit more today — feel like he would be a hitter-off-the-bench option today. And then we’ll kind of see where we are again moving forward, kind of day by day here.”

Stanton said he was encouraged by his pregame workout.

“I just moved around for the first time right now; it’s really going to be a game-time decision,” he said.

Rain is forecast for Wednesday in New York, which could push Game 4 to Thursday.china nike nfl jerseys cheap

Brett Gardner moved from center and replaced Stanton in left. Asked what he expected from Hicks, Boone said “a couple homers, walk” and smiled.

“The big question mark is, he hasn’t played in a couple of months, so that’s the challenge,” Boone said.

First baseman DJ LeMahieu lead off, followed by right fielder Aaron Judge, Gardner, designated hitter Edwin Encarnacion, second baseman Gleyber Torres, shortstop Didi Gregorius, catcher Gary Sanchez, third baseman Gio Urshela and Hicks in center. Luis Severino was on the mound.

Astros’ Gerrit Cole battles past patient Yankees for Game 3 win

Houston Astros ace Gerrit Cole did not have his best stuff against the potent New York Yankees offense in Game 3 of the American League Championship Series on Tuesday. He put up nothing but zeros anyway.

Cole went seven often-laborious innings in Houston’s 4-1 win, striking out seven and walking a career-high-tying five batters. But he held New York to just four hits over his seven scoreless frames, extending his streak of starts without a loss to 25, dating back to May 22. That’s the fifth-longest streak without a loss in big league history. But this one wasn’t easy.

“Intense,” Cole said. “Had to battle tonight. I thought their offense did an excellent job working some counts. Fell behind a few guys in a few of the early innings and put us in a tough position [where] we needed to make some pitches, and fortunately we did. Got away with a few mistakes, obviously.”

The Astros took a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven series and reclaimed the home-field advantage they lost when the Yankees won Game 1 7-0 at Minute Maid Park. Cole improved to 3-0 in the postseason with just one run allowed in 22⅔ innings — a 0.40 ERA. His 32 strikeouts during the playoffs are the third most for a pitcher in his first three outings of a postseason, behind Bob Gibson (35, 1968) and Cliff Lee (34, 2010).cheap nfl jerseys china nike

“I think he’s the best pitcher in baseball right now,” Astros manager AJ Hinch said. Then remembering Cole’s co-ace in the Astros rotation — Justin Verlander — Hinch added, “His competition is right next to him in the clubhouse. They’re certainly a good pair.5

“Obviously, I’m biased to my guys. But Gerrit is locked in. And to see him do it on the big stage in a playoff game with the magnitude of this game, it was pretty awesome.”

And yet Cole struggled with his command and pitch count for much of the outing. All five of his walks were issued with two outs. The Yankees got multiple runners on base against him in four of his first five innings, stranding nine runners in the process. The five free passes matched the career high he set on June 18, 2018, against the Tampa Bay Rays.nike nfl jerseys cheap china

Cole ended up throwing 112 pitches, tied for his third-highest total this season, before turning the ball over to the Houston bullpen.

“I actually think the beginning of the game he had a hard time finding his stuff and finding his tempo, his rhythm,” Hinch said. “He was still getting through his outing, made some really big pitches, had some pressure on him. Then once he found his curveball, it was pretty lights out.”

Cole got Didi Gregorius on a grounder to second with the bases loaded to end the first. He struck out Aaron Judge with two on to end the second. He retired DJ LeMahieu on a fly ball with two on to end the fourth.

But the closest the Yankees game to finally putting up some runs against Cole came in the bottom of the fifth. With two on and two out, Gregorius lifted a high-arching fly ball to right field that backed Astros outfielder Josh Reddick to the fence. But the ball settled into Reddick’s glove, keeping the Yankees scoreless.

Sources: Adam Silver had tense meeting with Lakers, Nets players in China

NBA commissioner Adam Silver held a tense meeting with players from the Brooklyn Nets and Los Angeles Lakers last week when he arrived in Shanghai, sources told ESPN’s Rachel Nichols.

During the meeting, sources said, several prominent players voiced frustration about their perception that they were being put in the middle of the dispute between the NBA and China, and they said they were unhappy about being asked to address the situation by local Chinese reporters before Silver himself was scheduled to do so.cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale

The relationship between the league and China was disrupted after Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey tweeted in support of anti-government protesters in Hong Kong on Oct. 4. Morey later deleted his tweet, an image that read, “Fight For Freedom. Stand With Hong Kong,” and clarified the intent in two subsequent tweets. Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta denounced the tweet and said the Rockets were “not a political organization” and that Morey did not speak for the team.6

During the meeting with the players, sources said, Silver was directly asked whether anything would happen to Morey, as several players said they believed that if a player had cost the NBA millions of dollars because of a tweet, there would be repercussions.

Morey will not face any league discipline for the tweet.

The teams were in China to play two preseason games in front of the country’s avid basketball fans. Officials in both countries have said as many as 500 million Chinese watched at least one NBA game last season.cheap nfl jerseys china nike

Chinese officials eventually severed a cooperative agreement with the Rockets, and China’s state television broadcaster canceled plans to air the games. Several NBA Cares activities with the players also were canceled, as was press availability with the teams and some Chinese sponsorships.

Silver said the NBA was “apologetic” over the reaction to Morey’s tweets and the actions that occurred afterward, but he refused to apologize, saying, “We are not apologizing for Daryl exercising his freedom of expression.”

The Rockets have a large following in China, partly because Yao Ming, the team’s former star center, is president of China’s basketball association.