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Christmas Football Live! (24-29 Dec)

  • [recommend] Good morning and welcome to Sky Sports’ festive football blog. It is one of the most important periods of the season for all the clubs and there is a jam-packed schedule to look forward to on Boxing Day, as well as another full round of matches at the weekend. We’ll have all the team news from the Premier League over the next few hours, as well as all the latest from the manager’s press conferences and plenty of expert analysis.
    12/24/2013 8:56:51 AM
  • [soccerspecial] After the merriment of Christmas Day, there is no better way to spend Boxing Day than with a feast of football, and the action kicks off at lunchtime with Hull City’s home game against Premier League champions Manchester United, which can be seen live on Sky Sports 1HD. There will also be a Soccer Special on Sky Sports News HD, as Julian Warren and the boys take us through the rest of the afternoon’s matches.
    12/24/2013 9:08:21 AM
  • [football] It is shaping up to be one of the most exciting title races in years, with barely a sprig of holly between the top teams. In fact, just two points separate first from fifth, with Liverpool taking up the Christmas No.1 position after Arsenal and Chelsea could only draw 0-0 last night. Manchester City and Everton are also within striking distance and the likes of Newcastle, Tottenham and Manchester United are not too far behind.
    12/24/2013 9:33:54 AM
  • [chelsea] The goalless stalemate between Arsenal and Chelsea may not have been the most gripping game of the season but it still generated its fair share of talking points, with Jose Mourinho defending his side’s tactics and accusing the Gunners of over-reacting to some tough tackling.
    12/24/2013 9:46:19 AM
  • [manchestercity] Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart is to retain his place for the Boxing Day clash with Liverpool after making a first Premier League start in almost two months at Fulham. Gael Clichy could continue on his 'wrong' flank at right-back due to injuries for Pablo Zabaleta and Micah Richards (both hamstring) or central defender Dedryck Boyata, midfielder James Milner or Aleksandar Kolarov could be drafted in. Top scorer Sergio Aguero (calf) and defender Matija Nastasic (calf) are out and Stevan Jovetic missed the win at Fulham due to illness so could be absent once more.
    Joe Hart: Set to keep starting spot 

    12/24/2013 10:00:18 AM
  • [manchesterunited] Danny Welbeck is a doubt for Manchester United's trip to Hull City. Welbeck suffered a bang on the knee during Saturday's win over West Ham and, though fears of a repeat of the injury that ruled him out earlier in the season have been dispelled, he is in a race to be fit for the KC Stadium. Michael Carrick (Achilles) and Robin van Persie (thigh) are unlikely to be involved and Marouane Fellaini (wrist) is definitely out but Anders Lindegaard should be back after a hip problem.
    Danny Welbeck: Doubtful for Man Utd's trip to Hull 

    12/24/2013 10:08:53 AM
  • [tottenham] Tim Sherwood will take training today as Tottenham's permanent manager after signing a deal until 2015, and will be looking to follow up Sunday’s 3-2 win at Southampton with another three points on Boxing Day against West Brom, who remain without a boss following the departure of Steve Clarke.
    Tim Sherwood: In charge of Tottenham on a deal until 2013 

    12/24/2013 10:17:06 AM
  • [westbrom] Striker Victor Anichebe is West Brom's only injury doubt ahead of their clash with Tottenham. The forward is struggling with a groin problem ahead of the Boxing Day encounter but is caretaker head coach Keith Downing's only injury doubt. Goalkeeper Ben Foster returned from a foot injury in last weekend's 1-1 draw with Hull City and reported no ill effects.
    12/24/2013 10:19:17 AM
  • [southampton] Southampton are without a win in six games ahead of their trip to Cardiff City, but James Ward-Prowse is confident they can bounce back.

    12/24/2013 10:27:51 AM
  • [southampton] Dani Osvaldo, Luke Shaw, Nathaniel Clyne and Kelvin Davis could all return for injury-hit Southampton at Cardiff. The quartet will have various injuries and ailments assessed to see whether they are able to return for the Premier League clash in south Wales. Jose Fonte and Maya Yoshida were on the bench for Sunday's 3-2 loss to Tottenham due to slight problems, while Artur Boruc (hand), Victor Wanyama (shin) and Guly do Prado (knee) remain sidelined.
    12/24/2013 10:31:39 AM
  • [liverpool] All eyes will be on Luis Suarez when Liverpool take on Manchester City in the late kick-off on Boxing Day, and Steven Gerrard says there is nobody in the game to match the Uruguayan at the current time.
    Lionel Messi's out injured and Cristiano Ronaldo's had a bit of an injury of late. Luis is the best player in the world right now.

    Steven Gerrard: Reckons Luis Suarez is the best in the world 

    12/24/2013 10:40:57 AM
  • [norwich] Norwich midfielder Jonathan Howson faces a late fitness test for the game against Fuham. Howson is struggling with a back problem and is a doubt for the relegation showdown. Defender Russell Martin missed the 0-0 draw with Sunderland to rest a sore ankle but will return against Fulham.
    12/24/2013 10:48:08 AM
  • [fulham] Striker Dimitar Berbatov faces a late fitness test if he is to be in contention for Fulham against Norwich. The 32-year-old missed the 4-2 loss to Manchester City with a groin injury but manager Rene Meulensteen is hopeful he will be fit for the match at Carrow Road. It is in defence where Meulensteen has most of his worries as both Brede Hangeland (back) and Philippe Senderos (abductor) are missing as well as Matthew Briggs (hernia).
    Rene Meulensteen is set to give Dimitar Berbatov a late fitness test 

    12/24/2013 10:52:54 AM
  • [westham] West Ham boss Sam Allardyce is braced for a tough test against Arsenal.


    12/24/2013 10:57:14 AM
  • [westham] Sam Allardyce is upbeat about the fitness of his West Ham squad ahead of the busy festive schedule. The good news is that none of his players have been eating Christmas decorations, which can cause tinselitis.  

    12/24/2013 11:05:07 AM
  • [everton] Everton left-back Leighton Baines could be back in contention for the Boxing Day clash with Sunderland after five games out with a broken toe. Striker Nikica Jelavic should also be available after missing Sunday's win at Swansea with a minor hamstring injury. Midfielder Steven Pieanaar and defender Sylvain Distin suffered knocks at Swansea but neither are serious while veteran full-back Tony Hibbert has overcome his latest knee problem.
    Leighton Baines: Could be back in contention for Everton 

    12/24/2013 11:13:43 AM
  • [sunderland] John O'Shea is fighting to be fit for Sunderland's visit to Everton. The Republic of Ireland international damaged a shoulder during Saturday's goalless draw with Norwich at the Stadium of Light and is being assessed. Defensive partner Wes Brown begins a three-match ban following his dismissal against the Canaries, while keeper Keiren Westwood (shoulder) and defender Carlos Cuellar (hip) are still out.
    12/24/2013 11:21:42 AM
  • [arsenal] Arsene Wenger was adamant his side should have had a penalty for Willian's challenge on Theo Walcott in Arsenal's 0-0 draw with Chelsea.

    12/24/2013 11:29:12 AM
  • [arsenal] Jack Wilshere was suspended for the draw against Chelsea and will complete his two-match ban during Thursday's game at West Ham. Centre-half Laurent Koscielny could return after sitting out Monday’s match with a cut on his knee. Forward Yaya Sanogo (back), midfielders Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Abou Diaby (both knee) remain sidelined.
    12/24/2013 11:33:04 AM
  • [hull] Hull City manager Steve Bruce could field the same starting XI for the fourth Premier League match in a row when Manchester United visit the KC Stadium on Boxing Day, live on Sky Sports 1HD. With Robbie Brady (groin) unlikely to be fit to face his former club, Bruce may keep faith with a side that has drawn against Swansea, Stoke and West Brom. Sone Aluko (Achilles) and Stephen Quinn (hamstring) are both certain absentees.
    12/24/2013 11:39:23 AM
  • [manchestercity] Manchester City have provided great entertainment so far this season, scoring 51 goals in the Premier League already, but they have also conceded their fair share and midfielder James Milner admits the focus over Christmas will be on points rather than drama.
    We'd like to have games that are a bit more boring if we can, maybe a 1-0 or 2-0.

    12/24/2013 11:46:11 AM
  • [astonvilla] Gabriel Agbonlahor returns from a one-match suspension but Christian Benteke is likely to be missing once more when Aston Villa face Crystal Palace on Boxing Day. Belgian striker Benteke was left out of the squad for Villa's 2-1 loss to Stoke on Saturday to give him time to recover from an ongoing knee problem and is a major doubt. Midfielder Ashley Westwood serves a one-match ban after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season while captain Ron Vlaar is unlikely to have recovered from a calf problem in time. 
    Christian Benteke: Set to miss Aston Villa's busy festive schedule 

    12/24/2013 11:53:03 AM
  • [stoke] Stoke boss Mark Hughes must decide whether to reward Charlie Adam for his impressive second-half performance against Aston Villa with a start when the Potters travel to Newcastle on Boxing Day. Adam was key to Stoke's 2-1 victory after replacing Marko Arnautovic at half-time, netting the opening goal, but Hughes also has Stephen Ireland available. The Irishman was forced to sit out the clash against his parent club. Defender Robert Huth will miss all the Christmas fixtures as he continues his recovery from a knee operation.
    12/24/2013 12:02:20 PM
  • [mondaynightfootball] Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher pick out their team of the year so far

    12/24/2013 12:07:30 PM
  • [chelsea] Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho is likely to rotate his options for the Boxing Day encounter with Swansea, meaning Ashley Cole could start at left-back. With the Blues facing Premier League leaders Liverpool on Sunday, Mourinho may opt to withdraw the likes of captain John Terry, who has played every league game this season, from the first line of battle. Michael Essien is available after missing the Arsenal draw through suspension, while his fellow midfielder Marco van Ginkel (knee) is a long-term absentee.
    12/24/2013 12:18:54 PM
  • [paulmerson] Reckon you can predict the Boxing Day scores in the Premier League? Paul Merson has had his say on what he thinks might happen and is going for wins for Manchester United, Manchester City and Tottenham, on what promises to be an absorbing day of top-flight football.
    12/24/2013 12:26:06 PM
  • [southampton] Southampton boss Mauricio Pochettino is determined to return to winning ways at Cardiff after Christmas, having lost to Tottenham on Sunday.

    12/24/2013 12:33:18 PM
  • [manchesterunited]What do you want for Christmas? Festive greetings here from Wilfried Zaha on Instagram - wonder if he's praying for more game time with Manchester United...

    Merry Christmas to everyone ✌️🎅
    by Wilfried Zaha via Instagram
    12/24/2013 12:43:51 PM
  • [fl72]

    12/24/2013 12:51:56 PM
  • [liverpool]Liverpool will be without the injured Daniel Sturridge for around another month, but the England striker insists his recovery from an ankle injury is going well...

    12/24/2013 12:54:04 PM
  • [celtic]Adam Matthews has recovered from a fever to join the Celtic squad ahead of their Scottish Premiership clash with St Johnstone at McDiarmid Park on Boxing Day - a game you can see live on Sky Sports 1 HD from 3pm. Midfielder Tom Rogic will train on Tuesday after recovering from a calf complaint and will come into contention. Charlie Mulgrew (groin), Dirk Boerrigter (hamstring), Mikael Lustig (hip), Beram Kayal (foot) and Steven Mouyokolo (Achilles) remain out.
    12/24/2013 1:00:12 PM
  • [bayernmunich]Good to see Arsenal's forthcoming Champions League opponents Bayern Munich getting in the festive spirit. You'll be able to see the first leg of that last-16 tie from the Emirates live on Sky Sports on Wednesday, 19 February. Make a note in your new diary!


    12/24/2013 1:05:16 PM
  • [skysportsnews]Brentford have sent their condolences to the family and friends of their former chairman and manager Ron Noades, whose spell at Griffin Park came after an often controversial but also successful spell at Crystal Palace. Palace have also said they are "saddened" to learn of Noades' passing, which comes after a long battle with lung cancer.

    12/24/2013 1:11:43 PM
  • [tottenham]New head coach Tim Sherwood has no fresh concerns for Tottenham's Premier League clash with West Brom at White Hart Lane on Boxing Day. Mousa Dembele limped off early in the second half of Sunday's 3-2 win at Southampton, but the Belgium midfielder's twisted ankle is not too serious. Andros Townsend (hamstring), Younes Kaboul (thigh) and Jan Vertonghen (ankle) are missing, while Paulinho is suspended and Harry Kane has a back complaint.

    Mousa Dembele: Should shake off ankle injury in time 
    12/24/2013 1:21:43 PM
  • [westham]Speaking ahead of West Ham's Boxing Day clash at home to Arsenal, Hammers boss Sam Allardyce discusses a new transfer link with former Sunderland striker Asamoah Gyan.

    12/24/2013 1:32:01 PM
  • [manchestercity]

    12/24/2013 1:37:20 PM
  • [swansea]Michael Laudrup will be without Michu, Nathan Dyer and Michel Vorm for Swansea's Premier League trip to Chelsea on Boxing Day. Michu is to undergo ankle surgery in coming week, while goalkeeper Vorm has already had a knee operation and Dyer is sidelined by an ankle ligament problem. Garry Monk is also absent with a knee problem but Laudrup could hand a recall to midfielder Leon Britton who has returned from a broken toe.

    Leon Britton: Could return for Swansea at Chelsea 
    12/24/2013 1:42:18 PM
  • [manchesterunited]Here's three Manchester United players rocking the festive knitwear... will the club be able to take three points in the Boxing Day clash at Hull City (live on Sky Sports 1 HD from 12.30pm)?
    Which Red has the best Christmas jumper - Nani, Anders Lindegaard or Marouane Fellaini? #mufc
    by Manchester United via Instagram
    12/24/2013 1:44:40 PM
  • [tottenham]Time to hear from the new Tottenham head coach Tim Sherwood, after confirmation that he'll be at the helm at White Hart Lane until the end of next season.

    12/24/2013 1:54:28 PM
  • [tv]Cap off a great 2013 with the last Premier League games of the year on Sky Sports, and look forward to even more live action next year with the UEFA Champions League, Sky Bet Football League, Capital One Cup and La Liga.
    Live football on Sky Sports
    by Jon Holmes via YouTube
    12/24/2013 2:04:33 PM
  • [fl72]Scunthorpe have chalked up four wins and a draw from their last five games to rise to third spot in League Two, so it's no surprise that Russ Wilcox - who was in caretaker charge after the exit of Brian Laws - has been given the Iron gig permanently.

    12/24/2013 2:06:57 PM
  • [liverpool]

    12/24/2013 2:09:29 PM
  • [cardiff]Craig Bellamy looks set to miss Cardiff's Boxing Day clash at home to Southampton as the veteran forward continues to struggle with a knee problem. Manager Malky Mackay may decide to restore Fraizer Campbell to his starting line-up having left the striker on the bench for the weekend defeat at Liverpool. Kim Bo-kyung is also pushing for a recall to the starting XI, and could come into the side at the expense of Aron Gunnarsson.

    Fraizer Campbell: Could return for Cardiff against Saints 
    12/24/2013 2:13:21 PM
  • [scottishfootball]Midfielder Paddy Cregg has been freed to line up for St Johnstone against Scottish Premiership opponents Celtic after the Perth side appealed his red card against Hibernian last week. However, injuries sustained at Easter Road have ruled out Murray Davidson (abdomen) and Chris Millar (groin) from the Hoops' Boxing Day visit to McDiarmid Park (live on Sky Sports 1 HD from 3pm). Steven MacLean remains on the sidelines with a knee injury and fellow striker Rory Fallon is suspended.
    12/24/2013 2:27:15 PM
  • [skysportsnews]

    12/24/2013 2:27:53 PM
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