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.
Harry Maguire believes Marcus Rashford proved he belongs on the global stage by scoring twice in England’s 3-0 World Cup win over Wales.
Rashford, 25, making his first Three Lions start since June 2021, scored an excellent free-kick to break the deadlock before striking again to seal the victory after Phil Foden had doubled their lead.
With those efforts taking his goal tally to three for the tournament, it has been a remarkable turnaround for the Manchester United forward after a difficult 18 months for club and country.
Rashford missed one of England’s penalties in their Euro 2020 final shoot-out defeat to Italy, before losing his place in Gareth Southgate’s squad due to his poor United form.
Having redeemed himself with the world watching, Red Devils team-mate Maguire said: "I am really pleased for Marcus. He showed he belongs on this stage.
"For the last year or so, he has been in and out of the England team. I think he has really found his form again for Manchester United and he is a massive player for our club.
"Throughout a long career, you will always have ups and downs and it is all about how you bounce back when you are out of form.
"He has kept working hard and done that tirelessly. I can’t speak highly enough of Marcus. He is a wonderful man and a great player."
The victory saw England top Group B with seven points, booking a last-16 showdown with Senegal on Sunday night.
Hartson slams Wales
Former Wales star John Hartson did not hold back last night after his countrymen lost 3-0 to England.
The defeat to the Three Lions left Rob Page's men bottom of Group B with just one point from three games.
And Hartson, who scored 14 goals in 51 caps for the Dragons, could not hide his disappointment after his country's first World Cup campaign since 1958 came to an abrupt end.
The ex-striker, 47, tweeted: "Can't hide the hard facts. Wales were miserable in the three games we played.
"I get it's 64 years and great achievement and proudness, but on the pitch we were substandard.
"Big job for Pagey to pick these players up. We go again in March."
Wales launch their bid to qualify for Euro 2024 with a trip to Croatia on March 25, 2023.
Page defends Williams concussion call
Wales manager Page has defended the decision to allow Neco Williams to play on against England after the full-back suffered a head injury.
Williams, 21, blocked Rashford’s powerful 24th-minute shot with the top of his head, causing him to fall to the floor and receive treatment.
The Nottingham Forest defender continued for another 12 minutes before going down again, eventually leading to him being replaced by Connor Roberts.
With questions over why Williams was allowed to carry on, Dragons boss Page insisted the player passed FIFA’s initial concussion protocols.
He said: "Neco took a blow to the head, so there are protocols in place understandably with concussion. He passed the initial test.
"We followed the FIFA guidelines. The FIFA doctor OK’d him to stay on the pitch, but he was advised if there were any symptoms then to flag it up straight away, and that’s what he did.
"There was no second thoughts at all, he was off straightaway. We’ve covered all the protocols and the FIFA guidelines."
Brain charity Headway criticised the handling of the incident and called for a temporary concussion rule to be introduced.
They tweeted: "YET AGAIN medics are given no options! A temporary concussion rule would have not resulted in Nico (sic) Williams being left on the pitch after #concussion. How many more?!"
World Cup to have first female referee
France's Stephanie Frappart will become the first woman to referee at the men's World Cup after being selected to take charge of Thursday's clash between Costa Rica and Germany.
The 38-year-old will lead an all-female team for the Group E match at Al Bayt Stadium, with Brazil's Neuza Back and Mexican Karen Diaz Medina named as her assistants.
Frappart already became the first female official at a men's World Cup when she was fourth official for the goalless draw between Mexico and Poland last Tuesday.
She is one of three female referees in Qatar for the showpiece, alongside Rwanda's Salima Mukansanga and Japan's Yoshimi Yamashita.
Liverpool to add more Kop rail seats
Liverpool will add an extra 2,500 rail seats to the Kop at Anfield before the Premier League season resumes on Boxing Day after a positive reaction to an initial trial.
There are currently 7,800 rail seats between the Kop and Anfield Road stands, but the club are adding more on crowd safety grounds.
The Reds have stressed that Anfield remains an all-seater stadium and does not have a "safe-standing" area.
Managing director Andy Hughes said: "Following a review of the initial rail seating trial last season, we will now expand the trial and introduce rail seating in additional areas of the Kop to further address crowd safety and persistent standing in line with SGSA [Sports Grounds Safety Authority] guidance.
"The health and safety of our supporters when attending matches at Anfield is paramount.
"As we have said before, it is essential that we listen to the experts and deliver their recommendations to address this important safety issue."
Pele's daughter allays health concerns
Pele's daughter allayed concerns over her father's health after he was taken to hospital in Brazil.
The 82-year-old football icon continues to be treated for colon cancer.
But contrary to several reports, daughter Kely Nascimento insists there is "no emergency".
She said on Instragram: "Lots of alarm in the media today concerning my dad’s health.
"He is in the hospital regulating medication. Some of my siblings are visiting Brazil. There is no emergency or new dire prediction.
"I will be there for New Year’s and promise to post some pictures. Really and truly, we appreciate the concern and love!!"