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PSG squander two-goal lead in Monaco defeat | Football News

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PARIS: Leaders Paris St Germain wasted a two-goal halftime lead as they lost 3-2 at Monaco in Ligue 1 on Friday ahead of a crucial Champions League game against RB Leipzig.
Kylian Mbappe’s double was cancelled out by two goals from Kevin Volland before Cesc Fabregas gave the hosts all three points with a penalty six minutes from time.
Monaco are now second in the standings with 20 points from 11 games, four behind PSG, who host Leipzig in Group H on Tuesday trailing the German side and Manchester United by three points.
Centre back Abdou Diallo, who fouled Volland for Monaco’s penalty, was sent off.
Mbappe, back with PSG since picking up a thigh injury against Nantes on Oct. 31, struck first in the 25th minute with a shot into the top corner.
He doubled the tally 12 minutes later from the penalty spot after Rafinha was brought down by Youssouf Fofana.
Moise Kean was denied PSG’s third by the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) for being in an offside position two minutes later.
It was referee Clement Turpin who then denied Mbappe his third goal for being offside one minute before the break.
Monaco raised their level after the interval and Volland reduced the arrears in the 52nd minute with a shot from close range.
The momentum had swung and Volland levelled in the 66th, again from close range from Fabregas’s cross.
The Spanish midfielder then coolly converted the winning penalty.
Earlier, Stade Rennais slumped to a 1-0 home defeat by Girondins de Bordeaux, four days before hosting Chelsea in the Champions League.
Bordeaux prevailed through a first-half goal by Hatem Ben Arfa as Rennes, who hope to revive their hopes in Group E against the London club on Tuesday, slipped down to fifth in the league standings on 18 points.
Ben Arfa danced around three Rennes defender before beating Alfred Gomis with a low shot from just inside the box nine minutes before the break.
The result put Bordeaux up to 11th on 15 points.


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Barca should have sold Messi, says interim president | Football News

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MADRID: Barcelona‘s interim president Carlos Tusquets feels the club should have cashed-in on Lionel Messi during the summer transfer window.
Messi was heavily linked with a move to Manchester City and sent a recorded delivery (Burofax) letter stating his intention to leave. He later said the decision was due to being disillusioned with the direction the now former board had taken the club.
Ex-Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu resigned in October rather than face a vote of no confidence, with Tusquets taking temporary charge until January’s elections.
“Economically speaking, I would’ve sold Messi in the summer window,” Tusquets told RAC1 radio station.
“Both in terms of what you save on the wage bill as well as the money you make, it would’ve been desirable. But this is something the coaching staff have to consent to and that’s not my place.
“La Liga are setting salary limits at the moment and this would’ve helped on that front.”
Messi’s current contract expires in June, when he is expected to leave for free and on Wednesday former Barca team mate Neymar spoke of his desire to link up with the Argentine again.
“What I want most of all is to play with Messi again, to be able to enjoy him once again on the pitch,” he said after his club PSG’s 3-1 Champions League win against Manchester United.
“I want to play with him next year, for sure. We have to do it next season.”
Tusquets conceded that scenario was unlikely to transpire at the Nou Camp, where the purse strings have been tightened following the COVID-19 crisis.
“If he (Neymar) became available on a free transfer then maybe we could think about signing him,” he said.
“Without making sales, there’s no money for new signings unless the new president has incredibly deep pockets.”


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New Zealand vs West Indies: Kane Williamson’s gesture towards Kemar Roach wins over internet | Cricket News

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HAMILTON (New Zealand): New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson has become the flag-bearer for ‘Spirit of Cricket‘, and his latest gesture towards Windies pacer Kemar Roach has taken the internet by storm.
New Zealand and West Indies are currently squaring off in the first Test of the two-match series. However, before the start of play on the opening day, Williamson embraced Roach as the latter lost his father Andrew Smith recently.
Windies Cricket posted a photo on their Twitter handle in which Williamson can be seen hugging Roach. As soon as the photo was posted, many users commented as to how Williamson needs to be appreciated for how he approaches the ‘Gentleman’s Game‘.

Both New Zealand and West Indies players also wore black armbands on the opening day in honour of Roach’s father.
“On behalf of CWI and the West Indies cricket team, I offer condolences to Kemar and his family back home. Losing a loved one is never easy and we want to offer our full support to Kemar during this very difficult time. We got the news as we prepared for the Test match here and the players and team support staff all got together and offered tremendous support,” Windies team manager Rawl Lewis said in an official release.
Half-centuries from Tom Latham and skipper Kane Williamson proved crucial for New Zealand as they kept the West Indies bowlers at bay on the opening day of the first Test here at Seddon Park on Thursday. At stumps, New Zealand’s score read 243/2 with Williamson and Ross Taylor at the crease. While the skipper was unbeaten on 97, giving him company was senior campaigner Taylor on 31.
Skipper Williamson also completed 1,000 Test runs at Seddon Park. He joined Taylor as the only cricketers with 1,000 or more runs at the venue.



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Surreal experience to represent the country: Natarajan on making ODI debut | Cricket News

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NEW DELHI: Pacer T Natarajan on Thursday said it was a ‘surreal experience to represent the country’ after making his ODI debut in the third game against Australia at the Manuka Oval in Canberra.
The speedster from Tamil Nadu gained popularity in the latest edition of Indian Premier League where he was labelled as the ‘yorker machine’. Natarajan played for Kings XI Punjab and bagged 16 wickets in as many games in the 13th edition of the cash-rich league.
His performance in the IPL handed him an India call-up. He was first included in the shortest format squad and later on added as back-up in the ODI side by the BCCI. This decision was taken as pacer Navdeep Saini complained of back spasm.
“It was a surreal experience to represent the country. Thanks to everyone for your wishes. Looking forward for more challenges,” Natarajan tweeted.
India skipper Virat Kohli handed the cap to the 29-year-old bowler before the match. In his debut game, he returned figures of 2-70 in his ten overs including a maiden. He bagged two crucial wickets of Marcus Labuschagne and Ashton Agar and derailed Australia’s run-chase.
The debutant got support from Shardul Thakur as he clinched three wickets.
India registered a 13-run win in the final ODI and opened their account in the ODI Super League while Australia took the series 2-1.
Both the sides will now lock horns in the three-match T20I series, beginning Friday.Luck was on India’s side to begin with as Kohli won the toss for the first time in the series and decided to bat. While the top-order failed to fire in unison, the middle-order rose to the challenge and both Hardik Pandya and Ravindra Jadeja played match-winning knocks of 92 and 66 respectively to guide India to 302/5.
Kohli himself played a knock of 63 runs. The addition of Shardul Thakur, Natarajan, and Kuldeep Yadav also rejuvenated the bowling in the third ODI as the side was finally able to take wickets at regular intervals. For the first time in the last six ODIs, the Men in Blue also managed to take a wicket in the powerplay overs. Aaron Finch played a knock of 75 runs, while Glenn Maxwell and Aston Agar tried their best to take Australia over the line. But in the end, Kohli and the boys managed to hang on to register a win.


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