Deflated after seeing his team concede a last-minute goal against his former club, Jose Mourinho looked up from his seat in the technical area on Saturday to see a rival coach taunting him just a few meters away.
So began a chain of events that offered another illustration of why the Manchester United manager remains the biggest box-office draw in English soccer.
In a tempestuous ending to United’s 2-2 draw at Chelsea, Mourinho leaped up and attempted to confront Chelsea technical assistant Marco Ianni before being held back by security staff and members of his own coaching team.
Chelsea fans reacted by aiming vitriol and abuse from the stands at Mourinho, the man who oversaw the most successful period in the London club’s history.
Then, came those must-watch, post-match Mourinho interviews when he played the victim, said Chelsea apologized to him and then belittled Ianni.
“Don’t do what everyone does and say, ‘It’s Mourinho who does things,’” he said. “I don’t know his name. I don’t need to know. Everything is fine.”
United’s latest impressive rally might be overlooked amid the late-match shenanigans involving its manager, who was seconds away from the sweetest of victories.
Ross Barkley’s goal in the sixth minute of injury time ensured United remained in the middle of the table and preserved Chelsea’s unbeaten start after nine games.
AFP, BARCELONA and MADRID, Spain
Lionel Messi is expected to be out for three weeks after fracturing his right arm during Barcelona’s win over Sevilla on Saturday.
The Barcelona club said in a statement: “Tests carried out on Leo Messi have confirmed that he has a fracture of the radial bone in his right arm. He will be out for approximately three weeks.”
“It is clear it is a blow,” Barca coach Ernesto Valverde said. “We know what he gives us and we know what he does to the opposition.”
Messi scored before going off in the 26th minute of Barca’s 4-2 win over Sevilla at Camp Nou, which sent them back to the top of La Liga.
He fell to the ground following a tussle with Sevilla’s Franco Vazquez and, as his right hand tried to cushion the landing, his elbow appeared to buckle.
Real Madrid failed to ease the pressure on coach Julen Lopetegui and instead set the record for the longest goal-drought in the club’s history during a surprise 2-1 defeat by Levante on Saturday.
Madrid have now gone five games without a victory and when Marcelo gave them hope of a comeback at the Santiago Bernabeu, they had gone 481 minutes of normal time without a goal, too. The club’s previous worst run had been 464 minutes, in 1985.
For a team that prides itself on flair and flamboyance, it is a streak that reflects just as badly on Lopetegui.
Asked about his future, Lopetegui said: “It is the last thing I am thinking about. I am thinking only about lifting the players.”
“We are with the coach until the death,” Marcelo said.
Raphael Varane handed Levante a two-goal lead after just 13 minutes. Jose Luis Morales and Roger Marti, from the penalty spot, were the beneficiaries.
At the final whistle, Lopetegui stood on the touchline, with his hands on his hips, staring ahead in disbelief.
Cristiano Ronaldo scored on Saturday, but wasteful Juventus had to settle for a 1-1 stalemate at home to Genoa to end the Italian champions’ perfect start to the season.
With eight Serie A wins and two in the Champions League, Juve were all set to extend that fine run when Ronaldo put Massimiliano Allegri’s men into a first-half lead.
However, Juve were made to pay for failing to convert a hatful of chances when Daniel Bessa headed in a second-half equalizer.
Ronaldo, despite the turmoil of explosive rape allegations that surfaced before the international break, notched up in the 18th minute his fifth goal for his new employers since his headline move from Real Madrid, ironically helped by a mistake from Genoa’s top-scoring Polish striker Krzysztof Piatek.
A communications mix-up saw Piatek leave Joao Cancelo’s blocked shot for his goalkeeper, but the loose ball fell at Ronaldo’s feet and he tapped it in to an empty net.
This was the 33-year-old’s 400th career goal in Europe’s top five leagues, making him the first player to reach that tally.
A businessman who received millions of dollars for his work on Tokyo’s successful campaign to host the 2020 Olympic Games has said that he played a key role in securing the support of a former Olympics powerbroker suspected by French prosecutors of taking bribes to help Japan’s bid. Haruyuki Takahashi, a former executive at the advertising agency Dentsu, was paid US$8.2 million by the committee that spearheaded Tokyo’s bid for the 2020 Games, financial records showed. Takahashi said the work included lobbying International Olympic Committee (IOC) members such as Lamine Diack, the ex-Olympics powerbroker, and that he gave Diack gifts, including digital
DECREASED TENSION: The US players’ lawyers said that the soccer federation no longer disputes that the jobs of the women’s and men’s national teams require equal skill Women players suing the US Soccer Federation (USSF) said in in court documents filed on Tuesday that the federation has acknowledged that the jobs of male and female soccer players require equal skill. The language seemed to signal a decrease in tension between the parties after language in documents filed by the federation’s lawyers earlier last month provoked widespread outrage in saying that playing on the men’s national team required a higher level of skill based on speed and strength and carried greater responsibility. The fierce backlash — not only from the women players, but also from sponsors such as Coca-Cola —
If British industry succeeds in saving lives during the COVID-19 pandemic, it would in part be thanks to the pioneering role played by Formula One (F1) racing teams in the country. Seven of F1’s 10 teams have joined forces with leading aerospace and engineering firms to ramp up production of ventilators, while Mercedes has also worked with medics and academics to produce an alternative breathing aid. Normally obsessed with improving the performance of cars that race at more than 320kph, the teams are stripping back lifesaving devices and using computer simulation to test whether more simplified models can be mass produced. The seven
BITING THE BULLET: Barcelona’s Lionel Messi said that top players would make contributions so that the club’s employees can collect 100 percent of their salary Three-quarters of Rugby Australia’s staff were temporarily laid off yesterday amid huge financial losses from the sport’s coronavirus-enforced shutdown, while Lionel Messi confirmed on Monday that Barcelona’s players would take a 70 percent pay cut to ensure that the club’s other employees are paid. The cuts to rugby staff were “the toughest decision in the game’s history,” governing body CEO Raelene Castle said. “Although extremely painful, they are necessary to ensure ... we are able to come out the other side of this global crisis, fully operational and ready to throw everything into the rebuild.” The sport has been hit hard by