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Liverpool crowned Premier League champions as Manchester City lose to Chelsea #Liverpool #Champions #PremierLeague #LFC

Liverpool Premiership Champions 2019_2020

Liverpool have clinched their first league title in 30 years, putting an end to the nervous wait for glory during the coronavirus pandemic.

Jurgen Klopp’s men teed themselves up with a 4-0 victory at Anfield against Crystal Palace on Wednesday, meaning they were within touching distance of the title.

But their fate was in last year’s champions’ hands.

Manchester City could not keep up with the Reds, failing to get the away win they needed against Chelsea on Thursday night to remain in the hunt for the title.

The celebrations will look less traditional than usual on Merseyside, given spectating is still banned under the COVID-19 lockdown and fans are being discouraged from congregating outside grounds.

Liverpool have been top of the Premier League table almost all season – having only lost one Premier League game against Watford at the end of February.

Just as their lead at the top of the division stretched until it was almost impossible for other teams to catch them up, the pandemic took hold in Britain.

Fans waited tensely as clubs decided how to progress.

Premiership and Championship teams eventually decided to continue the season after a three-month break, first allowing contact training and then full games from 17 June.

But lower league clubs had their remaining matches cancelled and were reconciled to relegation, play-off or promotion based on their performance so far.

Since the matches restarted, players have worn t-shirts including logos bearing an NHS heart and Black Lives Matter – and have taken a knee before games to pay tribute to the campaign for racial equality.

Despite the early glory for Liverpool, with several games left to play they are still chasing records.

Having secured 86 points this season, they are chasing down Manchester City’s record of most points in a season – 100, set two years ago.

Both clubs will meet for their own Premier League clash, as Pep Guardiola will try to take win some pride back and dent Liverpool’s celebrations next Thursday.

Liverpool last won the top-flight English football league on 28 April 1990 with a 2-1 victory over Queens Park Rangers at Anfield.

Courtesy of Sky News

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Katie Hopkins destroyed over Marcus Rashford jibe by Crystal Palace star #MarcusRashford #PatrickVanAanholt #CrystalPalace #CPFC #Katie Hopkins #UK

Patrick van Aanholt

Crystal Palace star Patrick van Aanholt has slammed Katie Hopkins for her response to Marcus Rashford’s successful campaign to secure free school meals for children into the summer.

Rashford wrote an open letter to MPs on Monday calling for the Government to reverse the decision not to extend the meal scheme.

Despite an initial rejection by the Department of Education, Rashford persevered and a £120million ‘Covid Summer Food Fund’ was announced on Tuesday.

Rashford also raised £20million for food distribution charity FareShare during lockdown and his actions to ensure underprivileged children do not go hungry have been lauded by Twitter users – with the exception of Katie Hopkins.

The former Sun columnist wrote : “Dear Marcus Rashford, do you think women should think about how they are going to feed a child before they decide to have it?

“I do not want to pay to feed other people’s kids. You are welcome to. Thank you, Katie Hopkins.”

Van Aanholt was less than impressed with Hopkins’ reaction to Rashford’s work and responded with a tweet of his own.

“He’s done more for this country in 24hours than you have your entire life, bow before a king,” the Palace left-back wrote.

This was not the first time van Aanholt has clashed with Hopkins on Twitter. The pair exchanged heated remarks earlier this month over the Black Lives Matter movement.

In the wake of social media users going quiet on #BlackOutTuesday, Hopkins tweeted: “Today is #whiteoutwednesday I will shortly be posting a picture of my a***. Thank you.”

Van Aanholt responded by writing: “I don’t know who she is but WOW…2020 needs to cancel you,” before Hopkins introduced herself to the Eagles fan favourite.

She wrote: “Dear Patrick van Aanholt, my name is Katie Hopkins. I am a white Christian Conservative. You May kneel and kiss my ring.”

Van Aanholt then made known who he was, saying: “Dear Katie Hopkins, my name is Patrick van Aanholt, I am Dutch Black, I’m also Christian (not that colour or Religion has anything to do with it).

“As for your ring you are welcome to come to Selhurst and kiss my big toe…I’ll wait.”

The 29-year-old then added, “Twitter I’m going bed but I can promise you I’ll make time for this Katie Hopkins” – which he did on Tuesday in light of Rashford’s campaign.

Courtesy of mirror.co.uk

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Sam Clayton Jr., a 1988 Jamaican bobsled team member, dies at 58 due to coronavirus #COVID19 #coronavirus #Jamaica #bobsled #SamClaytonJr

Coronavirus Alert_2

One of the members of the iconic 1988 Jamaican bobsled team died last month due to COVID-19, according to The New York Times.

Sam Clayton Jr., a longtime music producer and sound engineer, died on March 31 in Kingston, Jamaica, due to the coronavirus. He was 58.

Clayton was a renowned producer and sound engineer at the famous Harry J Studio in Jamaica, where he helped grow reggae music and several notable artists, including Horace Andy, Ernest Ranglin and Steel Pulse, among others, per The New York Times.

Clayton was also a member of the 1988 Jamaican bobsled team that competed at the Winter Olympics in Calgary, Canada — which marked the first ever team from the island nation to compete at the Winter Games. Their team later inspired the Disney movie, “Cool Runnings.”

“Most important of all, in this thieving, cutthroat music industry of ours, [Clayton] was trustworthy,” David Hinds, Steel Pulse’s frontman, told The New York Times. “Where Sam towered over the rest of his peers, is that he held dearly every task he did, no matter how small, or how tedious. They all got his relentless undivided attention.”

There were nearly 2 million confirmed coronavirus cases worldwide as of Tuesday afternoon, according to The New York Times, and more than 124,000 deaths attributed to the virus. Jamaica had 73 confirmed cases.

Courtesy of uk.sports.yahoo.com

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Coronavirus: Premier League season suspended as player salaries may be cut 30% #COVID19 #coronavirus #PremierLeague #Football #Soccer #UK #pandemic

Coronavirus Alert_2

The Premier League season has been suspended until it is safe to resume play, as it is announced players may have 30% of their salary cut.

In a statement on their website, it sets out a number of new steps being taken following a Premier League Shareholders meeting held today.

It begins: “First and foremost, it was reaffirmed that the overriding priority is to aid the health and wellbeing of the nation and our communities, including players, coaches, managers, club staff and supporters.”

The statement goes on to list new measures regarding the season, players, steps to support the NHS, supporting clubs’ community work and promoting public health messages.

It confirmed that the Premier League will not resume at the beginning of May, stating that “the 2019/20 season will only return when it is safe and appropriate to do so.”

The date when matches will restart is “under constant review”.

Courtesy of Sky News

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Premier League ‘to restart in July after deal reached in private meeting with Government’ #coronavirus #UK #PremierLeague #Football #Soccer #pandemic

Breaking News

The Premier League has been suspended since March 9 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Premier League is reportedly set to restart in July with matches to be played behind closed doors unless the coronavirus situation in the UK worsens. After news of Mikel Arteta and Callum Hudson-Odoi testing positive for coronavirus broke, the Premier League took the decision to suspend all matches.

A date had originally been set for games to potentially return after April 3 but that was soon moved back to April 30.

But growing concerns over the spread of COVID-19 has led to suggestions that date will come too early to be able to start playing matches again.

That has led to concerns over how the current season would be finished, with the cut off point for players out of contract being June 30.

There have also been some calling for the season to be scrapped altogether, making it null and void and preventing Liverpool from winning the league as well as stopping the likes of Leeds and West Brom from earning promotion to the top flight.

But the Premier League recently announced they had extended the season indefinitely, with the intention of completing the current campaign.

And Football London claim an agreement has been reached between the governing bodies and the government to complete the season in July.

The report adds all matches will be played behind closed doors over a period of four to six weeks.

That all depends on the coronavirus situation in the UK and whether or not it worsens in the coming months.

It’s not yet clear on what that means for cup competitions such as the latter rounds of the FA Cup.

But completing the season in July would hypothetically lead directly into the start of the 2020/21 campaign.

The Premier League season traditionally starts at the beginning of August, but it has been suggested that could be moved back.

Taking the season beyond June 30 though presents some problems for teams with players out of contract this summer.

There are currently a total of 66 Premier League players who’s contracts are set to expire in a few months.

Some of those players would have already been in talks about signing elsewhere while clubs like Chelsea have already agreed terms with Hakim Ziyech to sign on July 1.

There is set to be another Premier League meeting next week on Friday, where it is claimed a potential restart date for the season will be a topic of discussion.

Courtesy of express.co.uk

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Coronavirus: Tokyo Olympics to be postponed until 2021 over pandemic #COVID19 #coronavirus #Olympics #Tokyo #Japan #pandemic

Breaking News

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has asked for the Tokyo Olympics to be postponed for a year during talks with organisers.

Mr Abe held talks with International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Thomas Bach on Monday and said a postponement is unavoidable if the 2020 games cannot take place this year due to measures taken to combat COVID-19, NHK television reported.

The IOC has said it will make a decision on the future of the games in the next four weeks.

Courtesy of Sky News

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Lorenzo Sanz: Former Real Madrid president dies after contracting coronavirus #COVID19 #coronavirus #pandemic #LorenzoSanz #RealMadrid

Coronavirus Alert_2

Former Real Madrid president Lorenzo Sanz died on Saturday after being hospitalised with coronavirus.

Sanz, 76, was president at the Bernabeu from 1995-2000, a period in which Real won the Champions League twice.

“My father has just died,” wrote Sanz’s son Lorenzo Sanz Duran on Twitter.

“He did not deserve this end in this manner. One of the best, most courageous and hard working people I have seen in my life. His family and Real Madrid were his passion.”

Sanz signed players such as Roberto Carlos, Clarence Seedorf and Davor Suker during his time in charge of the 33-time Spanish champions,

He lost the 2000 presidential election to Florentino Perez, which sparked Real’s big-spending ‘Galatico’ era.

Sanz’s son Fernando, 46, played for Real Madrid from 1996-1999 before spending the final seven years of his career at Malaga.

Courtesy of BBC News

https://tinyurl.com/v4svkjp

Coronavirus crisis forces Premier League to suspend season until April 30 #COVID19 #coronavirus #UK #PremierLeague #pandemic #quarantine

Coronavirus Breaking News

The Premier League has delayed the season until at least April 30th due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis – and also agreed to extend the campaign beyond its current June 1 deadline.

Top-flight clubs attempted to thrash out a plan to complete a season placed on ice by the global pandemic when they met via a conference call on Thursday morning.

And, after a morning of intense discussions, it has been agreed that all professional football in England will not resume until April 30 at the earliest.

A statement from the Premier League, EFL and the Football Association, along with the Women’s professional game, the Professional Footballers’ Association and the League Managers’ Association confirmed the extension to the suspension.

The bodies also insisted they were united in their commitment to getting the 2019-20 campaign finished, and that the FA board had agreed to extend indefinitely the season end date, which is usually fixed at June 1.

Last week fixtures, were suspended until April 4 at the earliest and it seemed certain that the lay-off would be extended, although UEFA’s decision to postpone the Euro 2020 finals for 12 months created room for manoeuvre.

The focus was firmly on concluding the 2019-20 campaign rather than on what might happen should they be unable to restart, while talks with broadcast partners, whose financial input represents such a large proportion of revenue, are ongoing.

The statement read: “The FA, Premier League, EFL and women’s professional game, together with the PFA and LMA, understand we are in unprecedented times and our thoughts are with everyone affected by COVID-19.

“We are united in our commitment to finding ways of resuming the 2019/20 football season and ensuring all domestic and European club league and cup matches are played as soon as it is safe and possible to do so.

“We have collectively supported UEFA in postponing EURO 2020 to create space in the calendar to ensure domestic and European club league and cup matches have an increased opportunity to be played and, in doing so, maintain the integrity of each competition.

“The FA’s Rules and Regulations state that “the season shall terminate not later than the 1 June” and “each competition shall, within the limit laid down by The FA, determine the length of its own playing season”.

“However, The FA’s Board has agreed for this limit to be extended indefinitely for the 2019/20 season in relation to Professional Football.

“Additionally, we have collectively agreed that the professional game in England will be further postponed until no earlier than 30 April.

“The progress of COVID-19 remains unclear and we can reassure everyone the health and welfare of players, staff and supporters are our priority. We will continue to follow Government advice and work collaboratively to keep the situation under review and explore all options available to find ways of resuming the season when the conditions allow.

“We would all like to re-emphasise that our thoughts are with everyone affected by COVID-19.”

Courtesy of mirror.co.uk

https://tinyurl.com/uebqa7s

Euro 2020 postponed #COVID19 #coronavirus #Euro2020 #Europe #Football #Soccer #pandemic #quarantine

Coronavirus Breaking News

The Euro 2020 football tournament has been postponed to 2021 as a result of the coronavirus crisis, the Norwegian Football Association has announced.

The tournament was due to have been held this year from 12 June to 12 July across 12 countries, including England, Scotland and the Republic of Ireland.

The Norwegian FA tweeted: “Uefa has decided that the Euros should be postponed until 2021. It will be played from 11 June to 11 July next year.”

Courtesy of theguardian.com

Coronavirus: London Marathon postponed until October #COVID19 #coronavirus #UK #London #Marathon #pandemic #quarantine #emergency

Coronavirus Breaking News

April’s London Marathon has been postponed and rearranged for 4 October because of the coronavirus outbreak.

The event was scheduled to take place around the streets of the city on Sunday, 26 April.

It is the first time the race has been postponed since its launch in 1981.

“The world is in an unprecedented situation, grappling with a global pandemic of Covid-19, and public health is everyone’s priority,” said event director Hugh Brasher.

Organisers say every runner with a marathon place will be eligible for the new October date, but they can claim a refund if they want to.

Nearly 43,000 runners competed in 2019, with £66.4m raised for charity.

“We know how disappointing this news will be for so many – the runners who have trained for many months, the thousands of charities for which they are raising funds and the millions who watch the race every year,” added Brasher.

“We know that there will be many, many questions from runners, charities and others and we ask you to please bear with us as we work through the detailed planning process to deliver the 2020 London Marathon on its new scheduled date.”

It is the latest sporting event to be cancelled as authorities seek to limit the spread of the virus.

Courtesy of BBC News

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