LiveScore Daily: Today’s football news in bite-sized chunks
LiveScore Daily is here to deliver all the big talking points from the world of football throughout the day. Keep refreshing this page for the latest stories in bite-sized chunks.
Rice things up
Declan Rice believes a change of formation could help arrest West Ham’s shocking slump.
A tame 2-0 defeat at Tottenham yesterday leaves the Hammers a point from safety, with only one win from their last 11 Premier League matches.
It has been a disastrous change in fortunes for David Moyes’ side, who reached last season's Europa League semi-final, and they next face a huge home clash with Nottingham Forest on Saturday.
England ace Rice, who continues to be linked with a move away from East London, suggested after the Spurs loss that a fresh approach may be the way to turn the tide.
Rice, 24, said: "Everyone knows the position we are in but it’s up to us to sort it out.
"Last year, we were so good, we felt we’d score a couple of goals each game but sometimes this happens.
"When you play with five at the back the strikers can feel a bit isolated so we need to give them more support.
"There are six or seven teams in and around us. We are the only ones who can change it so I’m not too bothered about them, it’s down to us."
Cody Gakpo is ready to prove himself on the Champions League stage with Liverpool.
The youngster traded PSV Eindhoven for the Reds in January and after a frustrating start, has now netted back-to-back goals against Everton and Newcastle.
He is expected to feature tomorrow evening against European champions Real Madrid at Anfield and Gakpo cannot wait to strut his stuff on the continental stage.
Netherlands international Gakpo, 23, said: "It’s going to be my second game in the Champions League ever, so I’m really looking forward to it.
"I have to prove that I can perform at such a level again and I’m eager to do that.
"It’s a dream for every football player to play in this competition and for me, to have that opportunity, it’s a great one."
Jurgen Klopp’s side will be desperate to secure a positive result in their home tie, with the second leg scheduled to take place at the Bernabeu on March 15.
Beale’s big moment
Celtic legend Martin O’Neill reckons this weekend’s Old Firm clash could be a pivotal moment in the tenure of Rangers boss Michael Beale.
Since leaving QPR to take over at Ibrox last November, Beale has led the Gers to 13 wins and one draw but relentless form from Ange Postecoglou’s men means they remain nine points adrift in the Scottish Premiership title race.
On Sunday, the Glasgow giants meet in the League Cup final and O’Neill, 70, believes taking the season’s first silverware would do wonders for the Englishman’s prospects on the blue half of the city.
O’Neill told talkSPORT: "Rangers haven’t closed the gap but they have kept it there because both teams have been winning football matches.
"But this is big. This is really big for Rangers. They are trying to win a trophy, they are trying to break Celtic’s control of Scotland at this minute.
"Postecoglou has done fantastically well and I have to say this is a really big clash for Beale and Rangers."
O’Neill led Celtic to three league titles, three Scottish Cups, one League Cup and a UEFA Cup final during a glorious five-year spell between 2000 and 2005.
Victor Lindelof has urged his Manchester United team-mates to block out talk regarding a potential takeover of the club.
Reports emerged last week over a potential Qatari-based bid to buy the Red Devils, while British businessman Jim Ratcliffe is also known to be an interested party in any potential sale.
Yet Swedish defender Lindelof, 28, believes those issues are not of concern to the players, who are still competing on four fronts this term.
Lindelof explained: "I haven’t given that a thought, you know, especially now with the schedule.
"We can’t think about that. We just have to think about the games and preparing the best that we can do.
"Whatever happens happens, but we’re just focusing on our performances."
United welcome Barcelona to Old Trafford on Thursday with their Europa League knockout round play-off delicately poised at 2-2, before facing Newcastle in Sunday’s Carabao Cup final at Wembley.
QPR are hunting for their fourth manager in nine months after axing Neil Critchley on Sunday evening.
The former Blackpool boss was only in charge at Loftus Road for 12 matches, with the Rs failing to win any of their last 10 Championship outings.
Critchley had replaced Michael Beale in December, with his predecessor having left West London to take the reins at Scottish giants Rangers.
Early contenders to land the role include Wycombe boss and former QPR favourite Gareth Ainsworth, as well as recently sacked Southampton manager Nathan Jones.
Happy to help
Tottenham defender Ben Davies is already looking forward to his next stint at left wing-back after filling in expertly against West Ham.
Welsh international Davies, 29, has largely been used as the left centre-half in Antonio Conte’s Spurs line-up this season but occupied a more advanced position against the Hammers.
And it is a role he could soon find himself deployed in again after setting up Emerson Royal’s opener in an impressive display.
Davies said: "I’ve played there a few times at the end of games under Conte, but I’ve not started there under him.
"But it’s something that I’ve picked up the details [for] in training that we’ve done with Conte regularly, so it’s not something that I’m worried about doing. It was enjoyable.
"When you’re in that position, you’ve got to be defensively-minded but also you’ve got to try to join in the attacks. It’s something I’m happy to do for the team, it was fun."