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Mitchell Fretton
LiveScore
Phil Foden came on as a substitute against Ukraine on Saturday
Phil Foden came on as a substitute against Ukraine on Saturday

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.

Sorry, Phil

England boss Gareth Southgate has defended his reluctance to play Manchester City star Phil Foden in a central role.

The former Middlesbrough manager brought the 23-year-old on as a winger during the 1-1 draw with Ukraine on Saturday.

Foden has admitted that he prefers to play more centrally rather than on the flank but after seeking advice from Pep Guardiola, Southgate remains unconvinced.

He said: "He doesn't [play centrally] for his club. Presumably there is a reason for that. 

"It depends on the level of the game. In the middle of the park, everyone wants to talk about [what we do] with the ball but there is a lot of detail without the ball. 

"You have to be spot on with pressing angles, your responsibilities and if you don't, you don’t get the flow of the game.

"You'd have to speak to Pep, who is the best coach in the world, who plays him from wide." 

Hammer time

Jesse Lingard spent last season at Nottingham Forest
Jesse Lingard spent last season at Nottingham Forest

David Moyes insists Jesse Lingard is in excellent condition and hinted that could return to West Ham if he continues to impress during training.

The 30-year-old, who spent part of the 2020-21 season on loan in East London from Manchester United, has been without a club since leaving Nottingham Forest in the summer.

On the attacking midfielder, Moyes said: "He's in really good condition — much better condition than he was when he first came in.

"I have to say, when Jesse joined us two years ago I think he scored nine goals in 15 games and was probably the difference between us getting into Europe for the first time. 

"I want to give him every opportunity to get himself back in condition and see how he does. 

"So there's no real update on it at the moment, just to say that he's back and getting much closer to the levels of fitness where you'd hope he would be."

Phelan's United verdict

Mike Phelan believes Erik ten Hag is taking Manchester United in the right direction
Mike Phelan believes Erik ten Hag is taking Manchester United in the right direction

Former Manchester United midfielder Mike Phelan believes Erik ten Hag needs more time if he is to steer the club back to the top of the Premier League.

The Red Devils have had a bumpy start to the 2023-24 campaign but Phelan is adamant that they are better under the Dutchman.

He said: "They are changing lot of things and changing them quickly. There is a definite difference in standards, you can see that.

"They have spent a lot of money in the windows but he needs time, everyone needs time to put their mark on things. 

"There has been great success, or relatively great success in one year and I'm sure he wants to push on.

"It's been a little bit up and down at the start of the season but that happens. I think they can progress and make bigger strides."

Phelan also added that he has a lot of respect for Maguire after enduring a tough 12 months at United.

He said: "I have a lot of respect for Harry as I listen now to what he is going through, he's handled it unbelievably professionally and that is not easy.

"Because the spotlight is on him when he does or doesn't play. And he knows that because he's a professional."

Saudi sorrows

Daniel Carvajal has had his say on players moving to the Saudi Pro League
Daniel Carvajal has had his say on players moving to the Saudi Pro League

Real Madrid full-back Daniel Carvajal understands fellow Spaniard Gabri Veiga's decision to move to Saudi Arabia and believes players are more tempted than ever by the huge salaries on offer.

He said: "It's complicated, because the profile of player that used to leave was an older one, in the final stretch of his career.

"Now you see that they pay high transfer fees and that the players are younger, perhaps promising players.

"It's complicated because the salary difference is huge. I can understand Gabri Veiga because you work for many years to be able to have a big offer. 

"I understand him perfectly. The first thing I did was buy a house for my parents when I signed a five-year contract with Bayer Leverkusen. 

"I come from a humble, hard-working neighbourhood and I understand Gabri because an injury, a bad year cuts everything short."

No Ronaldo? No problem

Bruno Fernandes was on the scoresheet for Portugal
Bruno Fernandes was on the scoresheet for Portugal

Portugal recorded their biggest-ever win in a competitive match last night despite the absence of Cristiano Ronaldo.

Roberto Martinez's men routed Luxembourg 9-0 without their talisman, who was serving a suspension due to an accumulation of yellow cards.

The 2016 Euro winners have now scored 24 times and not given up a goal in Group J, with the victory ensuring that they stay on top of the pile.

On his side's performance, Martinez said: "It was perfect because the players had the same attitude from the first to the last minute.

"They remained concentrated not only in attack but to ensure we kept a clean sheet. As a coach, I really liked the attitude of the players, and they have a place in the history of Portuguese football.

"For us, it's a starting point. We have to continue to work and improve but the team has continuity. This group deserves to create history. The talent is at the highest level in world football."

Pep talk

Kolo Toure has been full of praise for Pep Guardiola
Kolo Toure has been full of praise for Pep Guardiola

Former Manchester City defender Kolo Toure hailed Citizens boss Pep Guardiola as a "genius" in a recent interview.

The ex-defender has played under a host of some of the world's greatest managers, including Arsene Wenger, Roberto Mancini and Mark Hughes, and described City's current chief as an inspiration to others.

He said: "He's the biggest inspiration. 

"The way he sets his team up tactically, the details he is giving to his players, but at the same time, the motivation to keep them performing game after game at the highest level is incredible. 

"That is the main thing for me. He is demanding of them and to be able to repeat that. To motivate himself, to motivate his players is a skill.

"When he sees you and he knows you can reach that level, he will push you. He will expect them to do a little bit more and that’s what players want. 

"Everyone knows City and that's why Pep's a genius. He's so flexible, knowing when to use different tools and without compromising his identity. This is incredible for me."

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