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    Man Utd sending youngsters out to EFL clubs for week-long work experience rather than full loan transfer spells

    MANCHESTER UNITED are pioneering a new approach to getting their youngsters a taste of first-team football.The Red Devils are opting to ship their budding prospects to EFL League Two clubs for a week-long work experience instead of long-term loan deals in a scheme known internally as the ‘Pro Experience’, The Athletic reported.
    A bunch of United’s youth stars have been sent out on week-long work experiences with EFL League Two sidesCredit: Getty
    The Red Devils have opted to send out their kids including hot-shot Joe Hugill out for a week instead of on long-term loan dealsCredit: Getty
    The ‘Pro Experience’ pilot has been ushered in by United’s head of academy player development Justin Cochrane.
    Since joining the Mancunian giants in the summer, Cochrane and U23 boss Neil Wood have sent several future United stars into English football’s third-tier league.
    So far, Red Devils prospects Joe Hugill and Charlie Wellens spent time with Forest Green Rovers.
    Charlie McNeill and Dillon Hoogewerf went to Sheffield Wednesday, and Rhys Bennett and Dermot Mee were welcomed by Wimbledon.
    As part of their week-long stints, each player brushed shoulders with the senior members of each respective team.
    Some even travelled with the squad on match-day, warmed up, and got to soak up the dressing-room atmoshphere.
    Despite all the youngsters reportedly enjoying the experience, hot-shot striker Hugill’s time with Rovers was brought to an abrupt end when he picked up an ankle injury on his last day with the club.

    It’s now believed that the 18-year-old will be out for at least the next few months, which is a blow for both him and United.
    The 6ft 2in attacker has already been tipped for a spot in United’s first team by the club’s ex-boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer following his avalanche of goals since joining from Sunderland in 2020.
    Solskjaer was buzzing after witnessing Hugill hit four goals in a 6-3 win over Liverpool for the U23 side back in January.
    The giant’s goal haul impressed the Norwegian so much he admitted that Hugill could possibly end up playing with the big boys before fellow teen sensation Amad Diallo who joined the club from Atalanta at the start of this year.
    Solskjaer’s assessment speaks volumes as Diallo cost United a whopping £36million compared to the paltry sum of £300,000 spent acquiring Hugill’s services.
    Joe Hugill scores two goals for his U23 debut for Man Utd More

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    Players taken off pitch as medics rush to fan in stands with emergency treatment in Sheffield Wednesday vs Wycombe

    PLAYERS between Sheffield Wednesday and Wycombe were taken off the pitch as medics rushed to a fan in the stands with emergency treatment. With Wycombe 1-0 up just before the half hour mark, there was a break in play due to a medical emergency in the home North stand.
    A couple of minutes later and both sets of players went back into the changing rooms while medics treated the supporter in the stands.
    Around ten minutes later, both teams were back out on the pitch, with Anis Mehmeti’s opener cancelled out by Olamide Shodipo’s equaliser.
    Only in October Newcastle’s match with Tottenham was suspended during the first half when the elderly gentleman suffered a cardiac arrest in the stands.
    Dr Tom Pritchard was sat 30 rows away in the Gallowgate end and rushed to help by performing CPR before Newcastle club doctor Paul Catterson joined in the effort to resuscitate the supporter.
    Newcastle confirmed the fan was later ‘stable and responsive’ in hospital after the major health scare which saw him stretchered out of the ground after 20 minutes of treatment.
    Referee Andre Marriner stopped play as Spurs’ defender Sergio Reguilon spotted the emergency from the pitch.

    Eric Dier then ran over to the dugout to call for a medical staffer to sprint into the stands with a crucial defibrillator.
    The incident happened two minutes before half-time, with the visitors 2-1 up thanks to goals from Tanguy Ndombele and Harry Kane.
    Speaking during the break in play, Sky Sports pundit David Ginola called on all fans to learn CPR.
    The Frenchman himself suffered a heart attack back in 2017 and said it is ‘vital’ that more people know how to give the life-saving treatment.
    Heartwarming moment hero doctor is given standing ovation for saving Newcastle fan’s life after Spurs game halted More

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    Ipswich Town ace Idris El Mizouni hails Kieron Dyer and Nando’s for helping him feel at home

    IDRIS EL MIZOUNI finally feels at home at Ipswich thanks to Kieron Dyer’s mentorship – and a cheeky Nando’s!The extra-hot Tractor Boys midfielder, 21, has enjoyed a meteoric rise since growing up in a gritty suburb on the outskirts of Paris.
    Idris El Mizouni fired Ipswich Town into the FA Cup second round with a wonder goalCredit: Focus Images
    The Tunisia star recently penned a new deal with the club until 2024Credit: Getty
    As a kid he lived in a flat with his dad, who emigrated from Tunisia at the age of eight, mum, brother and sister in a bustling, high-rise apartment block.
    El Mizouni was scouted for Ipswich at 16 and arrived in Suffolk not speaking a word of English. But now he has become part of the furniture.
    In his first interview since recently penning a new deal with the club until 2024, he told SunSport: “Don’t even get me started on the food. To this day, I’m still not used to it.
    “France is known for great food and so when I came to England in my first year I was struggling a lot.
    “I was living in digs and they made food which was all right but Nando’s was the only thing I really liked. I’d get chicken with peri-tamer sauce and rice. I don’t mind the carbs!
    “I missed my mum’s food but thankfully I can cook now and, of course, my signature is chicken and rice!”
    The suburbs of Paris have produced a number of star players, including Paul Pogba and Kylian Mbappe.
    El Mizouni added: “When you watch the French national team, most of them come from the suburbs, they didn’t have a lot.

    “A lot of them had money struggles and were crammed into a flat with many siblings with a single mother.
    “Football is often the only thing that makes kids from the suburbs happy and I think that turns them into incredible players.”
    El Mizouni was just one of eight players who were kept on by Ipswich’s new owners, Gamechanger 20, following their £40million takeover in April earlier this year.
    Boss Paul Cook told the vast majority of his squad they were not in his plans and were free to leave in the summer amid a transfer bloodbath.
    But it has not always been smoothsailing in Suffolk for El Mizouni.
    At first, the Tunisia international was played out of position, plagued by injuries and was eventually shipped out on loan.
    And he credits Ipswich’s Under-23s boss Dyer for keeping him on the straight and narrow.
    He said: “Dyer’s been unbelievable on and off the pitch. He coached me in my second year with Adam Atay, who was great as well.
    “Straight away he put me in my position at No 8 as a central midfielder. He is a great coach and tactically I learned a lot with him.
    “I speak to him often and even when I was on loan, he still texted me asking how I was. He helped me a lot and I appreciate that.”
    El Mizouni hailed Under 23s boss Kieron Dyer for helping him break into the first teamCredit: Getty

    El Mizouni made his Ipswich debut in March 2019 but has often struggled for regular first-team action.
    The schemer was sent out on loan to Cambridge United in the 2019-20 campaign, before suffering a serious knee injury just before the first coronavirus lockdown.
    He was holed up with his family in a flat in Paris, doing his rehab on his knee using books for weights.
    El Mizouni was then shipped back to the U’s in September 2020, followed by a stint at Grimsby early this year.
    He continued: “The second time I went to Cambridge, I was so angry and frustrated because when you go somewhere you want to play but I was on the bench.
    “Dyer called me saying, ‘What’s wrong with you? You’re not fit. You don’t look sharp’.
    “He was basically getting on to me to make me better.
    “He said, ‘Even if you’re not playing, you need to do extra work, extra running, you need to be careful of your diet’.
    “That helped me because, after that, I came back to Ipswich and I was training with him at the Under-23s and I felt much fitter.”
    El Mizouni has used the struggles of his past at Ipswich as fuel to fire himself into more regular action.
    He has made six first-team appearances this season.
    And Cook was left licking his lips when the midfielder sent the club into the second round of the FA Cup with a wonder goal in the 2-1 win over Oldham earlier this month.
    Ahead of tomorrow’s home game against rock-bottom Crewe, El Mizouni said: “It was so great to sign my new deal because I’m a Paris boy who has grown up in Ipswich.
    “We know how big the club is. I’m comfortable with everyone, the players, the staff and even the chef now! Everyone is great.
    “It’s such a good feeling to sign again because the club wants promotion and to get bigger, and I’m going to be a part of that.”
    Lionel Messi gives Liverpool hope over Kylian Mbappe transfer More

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    Oxford vs Wigan POSTPONED after mass Covid outbreak with seven of hosts’ team testing positive for coronavirus

    OXFORD’S clash against Wigan has been postponed after a Covid outbreak in the hosts’ team.The League One clash was scheduled to kick off at 3pm today.
    Oxford’s clash against Wigan has been postponed after a Covid outbreak in the hosts’ teamCredit: Getty
    But a new date will now be arranged after SEVEN Oxford players tested positive for coronavirus.
    The U’s said in a statement: “Oxford’s League 1 game at Wigan Athletic this afternoon has been postponed after seven of United’s players felt unwell overnight and received positive lateral flow tests this morning.
    “Following consultation between the club, the EFL and Wigan Athletic, the game was called off and a new date will be arranged.
    “The players involved will return to Oxford away from the main group of players.”
    Wigan have assured fans that tickets bought for the match will be eligible for the rearranged clash, and are also offering refunds.
    The Latics are second in League One and two points behind Plymouth with a game in hand.
    Oxford are sixth after three wins in their last four games.

    The match is not the only one affected by Covid this weekend.
    Newcastle will be without manager Eddie Howe for his first game in charge after he tested positive.
    The former Bournemouth boss will keep an eye on things from a HOTEL room and needs to self-isolate for ten days.
    However, Howe will FaceTime every player individually before the Brentford clash and will be in ‘constant communication’ with assistants Jason Tindall and Graeme Jones at St James’ Park. More

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    Wayne Rooney set to STAY at Derby despite Rams looking doomed to Championship relegation after 21-point deduction

    WAYNE ROONEY is ready to battle on as Derby boss despite already looking doomed to relegation.The Rams administrators agreed to take a nine-point penalty from the EFL for Financial Fair Play offences, putting their total to -3 in the Championship.
    Wayne Rooney is prepared to carry on at Derby despite the club appearing to be doomed to relegationCredit: Rex
    Derby have also dropped their appeal against a 12-point hit for going into administration, leaving them with a total loss of 21, with two further three-point punishments still hanging over their heads.
    One would be for the late payment of wages and the other for any further breach of FFP rules.
    Rooney’s under-strength squad have managed 18 points from 17 games, but are now 18 points from safety.
    Rooney, 36, was taking training when the punishment was announced Wednesday, but is expected to tough it out.
    Bidder Chris Kirchner is trying to complete a deal to takeover the Rams, while others have shown an interest.
    But administrators still have major hurdles to cross, the first being agreeing a deal with HMRC over a tax bill that spiralled to over £25million.


    Middlesbrough and Wycombe have lodged compensation claims and peace talks are planned. Derby think they can win the cases, but it is uncertain.
    Boro owner Steve Gibson’s claim for around £45m is still to be addressed.
    They feel Derby’s financial irregularities helped deny them a play-off place in 2019 after the Rams pipped them to the top six by just one point.
    Wycombe say they were relegated because a previous points penalty was not imposed and want around £6m.
    Any takeover deal also needs an agreement with former owner Mel Morris to sell the stadium. He is looking for around £20m but that is also subject to negotiation.
    Derby’s doom is a massive scar on the EFL’s flagship division.
    For the third season running, a club is likely to go down because of penalties.
    Wigan and Sheffield Wednesday both suffered the same fate when they had won enough points on the pitch.
    Worse still, it makes a mockery of the final 29 games of Derby’s season.
    England manager Gareth Southgate praises Harry Kane for reaching 48 goals for England More

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    Wayne Rooney’s Derby hit with 21-POINT deduction after admitting to breaches of Football League’s financial rules

    DERBY COUNTY will have another NINE points deducted from their Championship tally. It follows the 12-point deduction from September after the club entered administration, taking the total tally of deducted points this season to TWENTY-ONE.
    Rooney and co are already bottom of the Championship after the first points deductionCredit: Getty
    Derby are EIGHTEEN points off safety
    The latest deduction has a further three points suspended and is for breaching the League’s Profitability and Sustainability (P&S) rules.
    Those historical financial breaches at Derby came while former owner Mel Morris was at the club.
    It all but confirms Wayne Rooney’s side will be relegated to League One at the end of the campaign.
    Rooney’s side are marooned to the bottom of the table on -3 points, EIGHTEEN off safety.
    Like in September the deduction will be applied with immediate effect.
    But the club also face the suspended three points being applied too if they don’t follow the correct terms of their budget set out for the rest of this season.
    If that did come into effect their tally of deducted points would increase once again to a whopping 24.
    Derby’s official website published the news in a statement on Tuesday morning.

    It’s after the club and Championship bosses determined under an ‘agreed decision,’ ratified by an Independent Disciplinary Commission Chair that they would take the punishment.
    Last week Derby decided to drop their appeal against the 12-point deduction for going into administration in September.
    On the latest deduction Trevor Birch, EFL Chief Executive said: “The EFL’s objective throughout this ongoing process has been to ensure that the principles of the Regulations were upheld on behalf of all Clubs.
    “In order to assess the sporting sanction that was applicable to apply to these breaches, previous P&S cases have been carefully reviewed and guidance taken from them.
    “The EFL has also considered the P&S sanction guidelines as well as mitigation put forward by the Club.
    “Given the complex circumstances of the case and the various outstanding regulatory issues between the EFL and Derby County, the League is satisfied at the agreed outcome and the sensible approach taken by both parties in negotiating this outcome and in respect of the appeal withdrawal.
    “Our focus is to continue to work with the Joint Administrators to assist them in securing a long-term future for the Club.”
    Meanwhile Carl Jackson, from Derby’s administrators Quantuma, said: “This has been a difficult matter to navigate bearing in mind the various issues concerned.

    “Whilst point deductions are never ideal for any Club, it was critical to the Club’s future that all matters were concluded between the EFL and the Club in relation to historical issues.
    “This conclusion allows us to proceed with our restructuring strategy for the Club with prospective interested parties.”

    Wayne Rooney’s Derby enter administration and deducted 12 points by EFL amid financial crisis More

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    Wayne Rooney, Scott Parker and Steve Cooper lead EFL’s rising managers aiming to follow Graham Potter to the top

    I WAS scoffed at a couple of years ago when boldly suggesting Graham Potter could be a future England manager.“What has he won?” asked one. “He’s only managed Swansea and some team in Sweden that no-one has heard of,” suggested another.
    Graham Potter used the EFL as a springboard into the Premier League when managing Swansea
    In fact, barely anyone in Sweden had heard of Ostersund, never mind here, until Potter took them from the fourth tier to the top division and beat Arsenal 2-1 at the Emirates in the Europa League. By the way, they beat Galatasaray en route.
    And he was also twice named manager of the year in Sweden.
    Then, at Swansea, he took over a club in disarray – relegated, under huge financial restraints and losing most of their stars players to balance the books.
    Potter almost got a young Swans squad, against the odds, into the play-offs.
    And at Brighton he continues to impress – first keeping the Seagulls in the Premier League and this season has them flying high.
    So much so that Potter is now being more widely tipped to become a future Three Lions coach.
    Nineteen players in Gareth Southgate’s squad have played in the EFL. Even the England boss himself briefly managed Middlesbrough in the Championship, after relegation from the Prem, and was controversially sacked in October 2009 with the club fourth, just one point off the top.
    But there is also a rich array of managerial talent in the EFL right now – and here are some of my picks to keep an eye out for the future.
    STEVE COOPER (Nottingham Forest)
    Steve Cooper has transformed Nottingham Forest’s fortunes this season since taking over
    FOR me, the Welshman is an outstanding manager.
    Like Potter, he did an unbelievable job at Swansea – even better than his predecessor.
    Taking the Swans to back-to-back play-offs, losing to Brentford both times in the semi-final (2020) and final (2021), was no mean feat.
    And now he has had an instant impact at Forest, with the team having won five of his nine games in charge, losing only one, since he replaced Chris Hughton.
    Cooper has the honour of already leading England to World Cup glory as well – taking charge of the Under-17s in 2017.
    I certainly can see the Welshman being a future Wales manager.
    SCOTT PARKER (Bournemouth)
    FORMER West Ham, Tottenham and Chelsea ace has the Cherries on top in the Championship.
    I saw them ruthlessly swat aside Swansea 4-0 at the Vitality on Saturday and can’t see past them for a return to the Premier League.
    Bournemouth are topping the table under boss Scott Parker
    He led Fulham into the top flight in his first full season as a manager and although they were relegated they didn’t exactly get battered.
    You have to remember Sean Dyche got relegated in his first Prem season with Burnley yet he got them back up and performed miracles since.
    Still only 41 and into his third full season. He was a leader on the pitch as a player and most definitely is a leader off it.
    RUSSELL MARTIN (Swansea)
    Russell Martin is impressing as manager of Swansea CIty
    AGED 35, he is the youngest manager in the top four divisions.
    In just two short years, Martin is proving to be one of the outstanding young coaches in the game.
    During his first job at MK Dons, his team set a new British record for scoring after a 56-man move against Gillingham in March.
    The Dons last season enjoyed the third-best possession stats in Europe – only beaten by Manchester City and Barcelona.
    And after a sticky start in South Wales, the team have started climbing the table with four wins from their last six games.
    WAYNE ROONEY (Derby)
    STILL very young at 36 with a lot to learn but he is doing an excellent job with Derby despite the circumstances and is learning all the time.
    Kept the club up last season and has a fighting chance of doing so again – despite a 12-point deduction and transfer embargo.
    Wayne Rooney has had to deal with so much during his first managerial job at Derby
    He is a real people’s person with good man-management skills – popular with players, staff, fans and even the media because he doesn’t duck questions.
    Rooney is also not afraid to try new things out tactically. I expect him to climb the ladder regardless of what happens to the Rams this season.
    RYAN LOWE (Plymouth)
    Plymouth boss Ryan Lowe is aiming for his third promotion this season
    THE 43-year-old Scouser has already won promotion at Bury from League Two before they were booted out of the EFL – and taken Plymouth into League One too.
    The Pilgrims are punching above their weight in English football’s third tier now, sitting second, and I wouldn’t rule him out getting them into the Championship.
    If he performs well at that level, what a springboard he will have then.
    MATT GRAY (Sutton)
    Matt Gray got Sutton promoted into the EFL and now is eyeing a spot in League One
    THE 40-year-old won an historic promotion for “little old Sutton” into the EFL and now has them hovering near the play-off spots in League Two.
    Great recruiter, coach and man-manager.
    Liam Manning is hoping to make a name for himself with MK Dons
    NOT many people outside of Milton Keynes will have heard of him.
    But aged 36 he is in charge of the Dons and doing well stepping into the departed Russell Martin’s shoes.
    Never broke through as a player at Ipswich but coached their youth teams and worked at West Ham, as well as in the States and Belgium.
    Derek’s ambition jibe
    BRADFORD boss Derek Adams missed the irony when he stated that Saturday’s FA Cup opponents Exeter don’t have the ambition to get promoted from League Two.
    This is the same Derek Adams who brilliantly led Morecambe to an historic promotion through the play-offs to League One in May – only to jump ship to take over Bradford in, er, League Two!
    Derek Adams left promoted Morecambe to take over at Bradford
    Winner Warnock is such old hat
    FRESH from breaking the record for most English league games managed, Neil Warnock got rewarded with the sack at Middlesbrough.
    He is 72 and, with 1,603 games under his belt, they say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.
    I mean that party piece of his – winning promotion eight times – is so old hat (rolling eyes emoji).
    Good to have Chris Wilder back, though, in management.
    He was also unfairly sacked at Sheffield United and will be busting a gut to get back into the Premier League.
    Neil Warnock may have eight promotions to his name but got the boot by BoroCredit: Getty More

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    English footie clubs racked up tax debts worth over £140 million since pandemic

    FOOTBALL clubs in England have racked up tax debts of £140million-plus in the pandemic.Sixty clubs in the Premier League and English Football League have the debt, figures obtained by The Sun show.
    Footie clubs in England have racked up tax debts worth over £140 million since the start of the pandemicCredit: Alamy
    Premier League clubs owe £49.5million in unpaid taxes including VAT.
    EFL clubs owe £91.8million in accrued taxes, with £64million in the Championship, £24.9million in League One and £2.9million in League Two.
    The taxman would not identify any of the clubs involved but it is understood that Wayne Rooney’s Derby County owes £28million.
    HMRC confirmed that repayment agreements have been struck so clubs are not in arrears.

    It is understood that Wayne Rooney’s Championship outfit Derby County owe £28million to HMRCCredit: Getty
    Ninety-three footballers, nine clubs and 23 agents to be investigated over £56 million of unpaid tax More