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Slaven Bilic Fumes At VAR Penalty Decision As West Brom Suffer Agonising Defeat To Manchester United.

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Slaven Bilic saw his side suffer a double penalty frustration at Old Trafford as Manchester United recorded their first home league win of the campaign thanks to a Bruno Fernandes spot kick.

Albion, searching for their first victory since promotion last summer, were awarded a penalty of their own soon after the restart after Fernandes appeared to trip Conor Gallagher.

But, after awarding it, referee David Coote overturned himself after re-viewing the incident on the pitch side monitor.

To compound the injustice – in West Brom eyes – Coote soon handed United the deciding penalty after a handball by Darnell Furlong although replays suggested Bilic was correct in claiming that Gallagher had been fouled by Fred in the build-up to Juan Mata’s cross.

The fact that keeper Sam Johnstone saved Fernandes’s first kick, only for Coote to order it re-taken as he had moved off his line, just added to Bilic’s anger.

‘We started at the second half and they became a little bit nervous,’ he said. ‘They wanted to score and became a little bit stretched and suddenly we have a chance.

‘But instead of being, hopefully, 1-0 up, the penalty’s not given and, it’s not even 0-0, we’re one down. That basically kills you in any game, even in the Championship it’s hard to come back from that, let alone at Man United.

‘Nothing personal but I’m extremely disappointed in the VAR. I felt it was little West Brom and the big decisions went against us.

‘It was a penalty on Conor Gallagher and I was very disappointed he over-turned that and then it was a foul on us before their penalty.’

United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer initially agreed that his side had been fortunate to escape the decision against them, that came just 50 seconds in the second half.

But, after reflection, Solskjaer credited Coote with getting his major decisions correct – although he was less kind about the display of his team as they recorded their first home league win since the start of July.

‘We’re delighted with the win,’ said Solskjaer. ‘They were very tight calls and I think he probably got the two decisions right with the penalties – well, three right because Sam was off his line.

‘But this is definitely not a step forward, performance-wise. We played really well against Everton last time but this one was way below par.

‘But we got the first win and sometimes three points is more important than the performance. Even though we need to get the points and move up the table we have to play better.

‘We know we can play better than this. We certainly could have made it more comfortable had we taken our chances earlier on.

‘Towards the end, when you don’t do that, there is always an edge to the game and we did seem edgy towards the end. It was important to get that win of course and you could see that – we never got the composure or quality to get that second goal.’

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Bruno Fernandes Wins Premier League’s Player Of Month For December

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This is the 4th POTM award he has won since joining Man Utd. There are only 5 players in PL history with more Player of the Month awards than him – Aguero, Gerrard, Kane, Van Persie, and Rooney.

Fernandes scored three goals in six Premier League appearances in December as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side went unbeaten, winning four games and drawing the other two.

The 26-year-old scored twice in Manchester United’s 6-2 drubbing of Leeds and also found the net in the 2-2 Boxing Day draw with Leicester.

Fernandes also provided four assists in December, including a defense-splitting pass for Marcus Rashford’s injury-time winner against Wolves.

The Portugal midfielder has scored 15 goals in 26 games this season across all competitions, helping Manchester United move three points clear of Liverpool at the top of the Premier League table.

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Dean Smith Has Won The Premier League’s Manager Of The Month Award For December

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The Aston Villa head coach beat Everton’s Carlo Ancelotti, Burnley’s Sean Dyche and Manchester United’s Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to win the accolade after masterminding a five-game unbeaten run.

Smith and his backroom team oversaw three victories and two draws as the club ended 2020 in fifth place.

Adding to the unbeaten run, Smith’s side scored eight goals and conceded just once during the month – keeping a league-high four clean sheets.

Back-to-back 3-0 victories against Crystal Palace and West Bromwich Albion helped catapult the team up the table.

It’s the third time that the Villa boss has been nominated for the award this season after he was among the nominees in September and November, eventually missing out to Ancelotti to Nuno Espirito Santo respectively.

Smith’s win sees him become just the fourth Villa manager to claim the award, following in the footsteps of Brian Little (Jan 1995), John Gregory (Sep 1998 and Sep 2001) and Martin O’Neill (Apr 2007, Nov 2007, Dec 2008 and April 2010

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GPLWK9: Kotoko Travels To WAFA – Preview, Players To Watch, Match Fact, Kick-off

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Just like visiting the Crosby Awuah Memorial Park, the Red Bull Arena in Sogakope is another venue away teams don’t dream of winning over there. Therefore, the celebration for a draw is tantamount to that of a win.

Asante Kotoko will be put to a massive test at Sagakope against West Africa Football Academy(WAFA) tomorrow in match week nine of the ongoing season.

WAFA might be the favourite to win the tie but Kotoko have been impressive in their last two visits though the latter have never won at the venue.

The Reds recorded a 0-0, and 1-1 draw in 2018 and 2020 respectively the last time they faced the Academy boys away. The last time WAFA beat Kotoko at home was in 2017 where they won 2-0.

Tomorrow’s game is apparently not the top liner of the weekend but it has all that it takes to be a must-watch game. Will Kotoko end WAFA’s unbeaten home run? Will Kotoko duo Fabio Gama and Kwame Poku have yet another good game? Who will stop red hot Daniel Lomotey from finding the back of the net in another home game?

Questions that keep all local football enthusiasts in a much-anticipated mood ahead of the game.

WAFA would need a win to keep up their chase for the title as they are two points behind league leaders Ashanti Gold who are on 15 points.

Kotoko on the other hand, have an outstanding game but at the moment are a point behind their opponent tomorrow and would have their eye set for positive results at the end of the game.

Key Players

WAFA 

Daniel Lomotey

Lomotey has scored seven goals this season which all of them came at home. The former Ghana youth star scored four in his last home game against Medeama. Hence will he will be the focus for Kotoko’s backline.

Kotoko

Kwame Poku

Poku has proven to be a reliable goal poacher for the Kotoko, scoring four goals in seven games so far this season. The last time out he had a brace against Liberty on Monday.

Fabio Gama

The Brazilian made his full debut for the Porcupines against Liberty which he had an assist to his name and showed glimpses of a quality playmaker the club have invested in.

Form Guide

WAFA- last five games

W 3, D 0, L 2

Kotoko- last five games

W 3, D 1, L 1

Kick-off: 3 PM/ 13:00 GMT  on January 17.

Bet Tips

  • West Africa Football Academy have only won one of their last 5 games against Asante Kotoko FC
  • There have been exactly 2 goals in 4 out of 7 Asante Kotoko’s Premier League games this season
  • There has been exactly 1 goal in 4 out of 8 WAFA’s Premier League games this season

Double chance WAFA

Both teams to score

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GPLWK9: Maxwell Quaye Stars In Olympics Win Over Inter Allies

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A brace by Maxwell Abbey Quaye aid Accra Great Olympics ease past Inter Allies at the Accra Sports Stadium.

Great Olympics went straight into action from the blast of referee Musah Mubarik’s whistle with Gladson Awako sending a long searching pass through the defence of Inter Allies, but Hashmin Musah was quick to quell any danger.

With a clear intention to score, the dade Boys kept a decent midfield with former Allies Midfielder Michelle Otou combining with Razak Kasim to put the breaks on Richmond Lamptey and Mohammed Zakari with only Desmond Abuga to contend with.

New gaffer, Yaw Preko pushed his men upfront to get an early lead, an objective that looked more easier to do, as Allies Defence kept committing errors with the last balls.

Having built confidence, the full backs of Olympics pushed forward to keep pressure on their hosts.

With a clear intent of what to do, Eric Osei Bonsu picked a long pass from Awako on the left of Allies goal area, weaved himself through a forest of legs, before Hashmin Musah brought him down for Centre Referee Musah Mubarik to award a penalty in thw 9th minute.

Maxwell Abbey Quaye stepped up to score, energizing the partizan crowd that watched the game in a hot friday afternoon.

Olympics enjoyed more possession of the game with a goal up, teasing their opponents with some display of passes with Gladson Awako and Samuel Ashie Quaye dictating the pace of the game.

The game did not really looked like one that Inter Allies had any stake in as their strikers kept making mistakes in the Olympics goal area, allowing Ebenezer Sekyere and Jamal Deen Haruna to enjoy a free day.

Maxwell Abby Quaye doubled the Dade Boys lead in the 80th minute through his second penalty of the day after an Allies player was adjudged to have handled the ball in the box following a thunderous shot from Michell Otuo.

The goal seemed to have ended the day for Inter Allies whose players protested the penalty call from Referee Musah Mubarik.

The win takes Olympics to the top 4 of the league with 14 points

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