Tag Archives: appleton

Michael Appleton settled at Blackburn Rovers

He's the only manager to have been in charge of three different teams in the FA Cup in the same season… but stability is the key for roving Blackburn boss Appleton

By
Neil Ashton

PUBLISHED:

22:17 GMT, 15 February 2013

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UPDATED:

08:50 GMT, 16 February 2013

In the car park at Blackburn’s fabulous training complex, a white painter and decorator’s van from Clitheroe is occupying the space of global adviser Shebby Singh.

‘I’m not sure what Shebby’s doing at the moment, but if he’s global advising he’s not advising me,’ admitted Blackburn’s new manager Michael Appleton. ‘I’ve not had any contact from Shebby since I’ve been here. He knows my number, he knows where I am.’

Appleton is already making his mark, a forward-thinking manager with ambitions to reach the highest level with Rovers. The interference from above, the comical sideshow that turned Blackburn into a laughing stock before he arrived on January 11, is no longer an issue.

Shake on it: Michael Appleton is building bridges at Blackburn

Shake on it: Michael Appleton is building bridges at Blackburn

He answers to Derek Shaw, Blackburn’s managing director, as the pair stabilise the club after a chaotic couple of years under Venky’s. They feel like a football club again, aiming for the Championship play-offs and proudly travelling south on Saturday for an FA Cup fifth-round tie against Arsenal.

When Appleton, 37, took charge of Blackburn against Derby in round four, he unwittingly became the subject of a pub-quiz question. ‘That’s right — I’m the only manager to have been in charge of three different teams in the FA Cup in the same season,’ he said.

He began the season with Portsmouth in League One, throwing together a team each week as the financial excesses of the previous regime continued to bite. Then it was on to Blackpool, replacing Ian Holloway until he left for Rovers after just 65 days.

New challenge: Michael Appleton made Blackburn his third club this season

New challenge: Michael Appleton made Blackburn his third club this season

He wasn’t aware of the financial restrictions under Blackpool chairman Karl Oyston until he began.

‘Karl admits he runs the club a certain way,’ said Appleton. ‘It was a slightly more attractive opportunity than at Pompey.

Next up: Appleton joined Blackpool

Next up: Appleton joined Blackpool

‘I wouldn’t have left Blackpool if I was completely happy, or felt I could take the club to the next level and keep it there. The club is certainly day to day. You can’t argue in a way, because Karl can say it’s been successful like that. We argued constantly, but Karl quite liked that. There was a mutual respect. We told each other what we thought, even if it was about each other, but it became a frustration.

‘I can see the talent they’ve got in the squad, the potential at the club, and the first XI is as good as any in the division. But with that you need the right infrastructure, training ground and facilities, and for things to be done in the right way so the players feel loved.’

Blackburn have the infrastructure and Appleton has had an impact. There is a feel-good factor again, a genuine buzz. They are six points off sixth in the Championship.

Appleton added: ‘I had to build bridges between the management and above, with the fans and the owners.There wasn’t a lot of stability: we had 12 people wanting to play the No 10 role. It’s a difficult job, but I didn’t know when an opportunity to take over a club as big would come along again.

‘Look at the facilities. They’re first class — it’s a nice place to work — and what you’d expect of a club who have competed for so long in the Premier League. We’ve steadied the ship, tried to be a lot more solid, and we have a goalscoring machine in Jordan Rhodes who can nick a win for us at any time.’

Rhodes has scored 20 since his 8million move from Huddersfield at the start of the season and, like the rest of the squad, is responding to Appleton’s influence. The manager said: ‘All I want now is stability. I’d love to put my stamp on the football club.

Goal machine: Jordan Rhodes has been in fine form for Blackburn

Goal machine: Jordan Rhodes has been in fine form for Blackburn

‘The frustration at Portsmouth was that no one saw what we were trying to do behind the scenes. I found it difficult to do at Blackpool, which is why I’m here. I’d love to be at Blackburn long enough for people to see the work we’re putting in. As difficult as the job is going to be, I didn’t expect it to come so quickly.’

As they head to Arsenal on a five-match unbeaten run, things are already happening fast for Appleton.

West Brom fan hunted by police after snowball attack on Aston Villa defender Joe Bennett

Police hunt West Brom fan after snowball attack on Aston Villa defender Bennett

By
Paul Collins

PUBLISHED:

13:31 GMT, 22 January 2013

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UPDATED:

16:12 GMT, 22 January 2013

Police are trying to identify the fan who threw a snowball at Aston Villa's Joe Bennett and missed during the Midlands derby with West Brom.

Television cameras caught the supporter aiming his shot at the left back during their draw at The Hawthorns on Saturday evening.

Although the snowball missed its intended target, police have launched an investigation into the incident and are hoping to identify the culprit.

Scroll down for video

Swing and a miss: The snowball went nowhere near Joe Bennett as he prepared to take a throw

Swing and a miss: The snowball went nowhere near Joe Bennett as he prepared to take a throw

A spokeswoman for West Midlands Police told Sportsmail: 'We are making inquiries to identify the offender and deal with him appropriately.'

The incident was one of several similar 'attacks' over the weekend.

On Saturday, Blackburn Rovers' controversial owners were pelted by fans when they made a rare appearance at Ewood Park.

Jitendra Desai, husband of owner Anuradha, was hit in the face as the Venky's group got out of their limos at the entrance to Ewood Park before the defeat by Charlton Athletic, new manager Michael Appleton's first game in charge.

Sean O"Driscoll named as new Bristol City manager

O'Driscoll replaces McInnes as Bristol City boss after snubbing Championship rivals Blackpool

By
John Edwards

PUBLISHED:

10:17 GMT, 14 January 2013

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UPDATED:

19:04 GMT, 14 January 2013

Sean O’Driscoll has been confirmed as manager of Bristol City after choosing them ahead of fellow Championship club Blackpool.

The former Nottingham Forest manager, who turned down Barnsley because he felt the job was not right for him, was ready to succeed Michael Appleton at Bloomfield Road.

But a late sales pitch from the Bristol City board has steered him towards Ashton Gate in a shock development that should be confirmed in the next day.

Checking in: Bristol City have named Sean O'Driscoll as head coach on a rolling 12 month contract

Checking in: Bristol City have named Sean O'Driscoll as head coach on a rolling 12 month contract

Derek McInnes was sacked in the wake of Saturday’s 4-0 home defeat by Leicester and City moved swiftly, after earmarking O’Driscoll but sensing he was about to accept Blackpool’s offer.

O’Driscoll, 55, harshly sacked by Forest earlier this season, was won over after being assured by Ashton Gate chiefs that he could do the job on his terms, even if the likely scenario of relegation to League One becomes a reality.

O'Driscoll said: 'Sometimes you have to go with your gut instinct. It just feels right.

'I think it needs a concerted effort from everyone (to stay up) and I'll get all the credit or blame, but everyone needs to be moving in the same direction.

'We need to hit the ground running and in this topsy-turvy Championship, anything is possible.

'If
we put a run together we can soon be in a different position in the
league. Everyone I have spoken to is confident we have the ability in
the squad to achieve that.

'I like the way the club is being developed. This has always been a well-run football club and that is never going to change.'

Looking down: Derek McInnes was sacked following a 4-0 defeat by Leicester

Looking down: Derek McInnes was sacked following a 4-0 defeat by Leicester

He continued: 'I know most of the players from playing against them or seeing them play so I have an opinion of the players as they will have an opinion of me.

'But what is most important in football is the character of the team and I don't know that. I have got to create a little bit of trust quickly.

'My message to the players will be “show me what you can do.” That doesn't always mean how many goals, how many times you can keep the ball up or how clever you can be. It is more the attitude you show when things don't go your way.

'This is a great opportunity for the players to show me when it hasn't gone their way that they are up for the fight. We've got to do it together.'

John Lansdown, the Robins' football managing director, added: 'Sean has got a really good record at clubs and a record of being there for the long term and we appointed Sean because we believe he has the ability to keep us up this season.

'We are looking forward to working with him for a long time.'

Michael Appleton new Blackburn Rovers manager

Appleton is Blackburn's third manager this season… and they are his third club of campaign!

By
John Drayton

PUBLISHED:

18:31 GMT, 11 January 2013

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UPDATED:

18:37 GMT, 11 January 2013

Blackburn have confirmed the appointment of Michael Appleton as their new manager.

Appleton becomes Rovers' third boss this season despite only taking over at Championship rivals Blackpool two months ago.

The 37-year-old former Manchester United and Preston midfielder, who began the season in charge of League One Portsmouth, has agreed a two-and-a-half year deal at Ewood Park.

Third time lucky Appleton succeeds Steve Kean and Henning Berg

Third time lucky Appleton succeeds Steve Kean and Henning Berg

Ashley Westwood, first-team coach under Appleton at both of his previous two clubs, will join him as assistant.

In a statement released by Blackburn, Appleton said: 'I am delighted to
be joining such an historic club. This is a fantastic opportunity for me
and I am excited about the challenge we have ahead of us.

'I can't wait to start working with what is a very talented group of players.

'I'd like to thank everyone at Blackpool for their efforts during my
time there and the chairman for allowing me to come here. I wish them
all the best for the future.'

On a roll: Blackburn have won three on the spin under caretaker Gary Bowyer

On a roll: Blackburn have won three on the spin under caretaker Gary Bowyer

Rovers' managing director Derek Shaw said: 'We are delighted to welcome both Michael and Ashley to the football club.

'They are both highly regarded within the game and we are confident that
they have the drive and ambition to take this club forward.

'We will do everything in our powers to support them in our quest to make an instant return to the Premier League.'

Michael Appleton skips Blackpool training for Blackburn talks

Appleton skips Blackpool training to thrash out deal over Blackburn job

By
Neil Ashton

PUBLISHED:

16:27 GMT, 10 January 2013

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UPDATED:

17:03 GMT, 10 January 2013

Michael Appleton has been given permission to speak with Blackburn.

The Blackpool boss is regarded as one of the brightest young managers in the game.

He has been mentored by Sir Alex Ferguson and Roy Hodgson since his playing career was ended by injury.

He will talk to Blackburn today and could even be their new manager in time to be at Molineux tomorrow night for the Championship clash with Wolves.

Rover and out Michael Appleton's reign at Blackpool could be an extremely short one with the former Portsmouth manager wanted at Ewood Park

Rover and out Michael Appleton's reign at Blackpool could prove to be an
extremely short one with the former Portsmouth manager wanted at Ewood
Park

Sportsmail understands Appleton and coach Ashley Westwood did not attend Blackpool’s training session on Thursday but were meeting chairman Karl Oyston to thrash out a deal.

It is believed Blackburn are prepared to pay
compensation of around 350,000.

Gary Bowyer will be in charge tomorrow if Appleton has not been appointed in time.

A statement from Blackburn managing director Derek Shaw was released on the club's official website last night confirming their interest in the 37-year-old former Portsmouth boss, with a Blackpool statement acknowledging a 'formal approach' shortly afterwards.

Blackpool reportedly rejected Rovers' initial approach and when contacted Shaw said: 'We’re in discussion, if that can be adequate.'

In the market: Blackburn need a new boss after Henning Berg was sacked

In the market: Blackburn need a new boss after Henning Berg was sacked

When pressed on whether Blackpool did turn down Blackburn's offer last night he added: 'I wouldn’t like to comment
on that. If there’s anything later we’ll certainly let you know.'

Appleton left Portsmouth for Blackpool on November 7 following Ian Holloway’s departure to Crystal Palace.

Henning Berg was appointed Blackburn manager seven days after Appleton but a run of one win in 10 games, including a 2-0 defeat by Blackpool at Bloomfield Road in his penultimate match, saw the ex-Norway defender sacked after 57 days in charge.

Blackburn have won all three games since Berg was dismissed and last week issued a statement to confirm reserve team manager Bowyer and head of youth Terry McPhillips would remain in caretaker charge until the end of this month.

This would now appear unlikely in light of the Appleton approach and Bowyer is due to address the media this lunchtime.

Appleton has won two and drawn seven of his 11 Championship games in charge of Blackpool, who are 14th in the table and six points shy of the play-offs – one point and one place behind Blackburn.

Liverpool have not made new bid for Tom Ince – Michael Appleton

No new Liverpool offer for 7m-rated Ince, claims Blackpool boss Appleton

By
John Drayton

PUBLISHED:

10:10 GMT, 2 January 2013

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UPDATED:

10:11 GMT, 2 January 2013

Blackpool manager Michael Appleton insists Liverpool have yet to return with an improved offer for winger Thomas Ince.

The 20-year-old initially left Anfield 18 months ago and has blossomed at Bloomfield Road, scoring 13 goals in the Championship this season.

Wanted: Thomas Ince is expected to complete his return to Liverpool

Wanted: Thomas Ince is expected to complete his return to Liverpool

Liverpool had an offer rejected for Ince last month and Appleton is confident the youngster will be in the side to face Fulham in the FA Cup on Saturday.

'We have not heard anything since an initial Liverpool approach a couple of weeks ago,' he said.

'As far as I am aware Thomas will have a day off tomorrow like everyone else and come back to prepare for the next game with us.'

Back in the day: Ince (right) played for Liverpool before leaving for Blackpool

Back in the day: Ince (right) played for Liverpool before leaving for Blackpool

Blackpool are believed to be holding out for 7million a player who left Liverpool for just 250,000 in compensation.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rogers is
planning to unveil a new attack in January with Chelsea's Daniel
Sturridge set to join in the coming days.

Wigan want 3million-rated Barnsley teenager John Stones

Stones could rock at the DW Stadium as Wigan race to sign 3m teen

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UPDATED:

23:16 GMT, 22 December 2012

Wigan are set to beat Chelsea, Sunderland, Manchester City and Everton to sign 3million Barnsley teenager John Stones.

The 18-year-old right-back has been impressive for the Championship club this season.

Looking to strengthen: Roberto Martinez

Looking to strengthen: Roberto Martinez

Wigan boss Roberto Martinez is
confident of bringing him to the DW Stadium in January by promising him
regular first-team football – something the big clubs are unable to do.

Martinez has already wrapped up a
deal for Honduras international Roger Espinoza and agreed to bring in
striker Chile Angelo Henriquez on loan from Manchester United.

Meanwhile, Michael Appleton's
problems as Blackpool manager continue, with former boss Ian Holloway
determined to take defender Neil Eardley to Crystal Palace.

Appleton, already facing a fight to
keep Tom Ince from Liverpool, does not want lose Eardley as well but
knows the player has a special relationship with Holloway, who signed
him soon after taking the job in 2009.

Thomas Ince prepared to see out season at Blackpool as Liverpool argue over 6m fee

Ince prepared to be patient and see out season at Blackpool as Liverpool argue over 6m fee

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UPDATED:

09:44 GMT, 20 December 2012

Thomas Ince is prepared to sit tight at Blackpool and run down his contract if the Championship club fail to agree a fee with Liverpool.

Ince, 20, believed the deal with Brendan Rodgers' side was almost done, but there is hitch over the price.

The England Under 21 winger's contract at Bloomfield Road is up at the end of the season and an FA tribunal would have to set the fee.

Man in the middle: Liverpool want to sign Blackpool winger Thomas Ince

Man in the middle: Liverpool want to sign Blackpool winger Thomas Ince

Blackpool want 6m for Ince, but Liverpool are offering substantially less for a player they released 18 months ago.

Liverpool still have a 30 per cent sell-on clause in Ince's contract, but the Blackpool wideman is determined to return to Anfield.

He has scored 13 times for Michael Appleton's side and has contributed 15 assists from his position on the wing.

Blackpool are already in dialogue with Liverpool about the January move, but it is being held up by the Tangerines' playing hardball.

Rodgers, who is short of attacking options because of Andy Carroll's loan move to West Ham and the long-term injury to Fabio Borini, needs the deal done in the transfer window.

Blackpool 2 Blackburn 0 match report: Wes Thomas and Kirk Broadfoot put Henning Berg under more pressure

Blackpool 2 Blackburn 0: Appleton's unbeaten run goes on but it's more gloom for Berg

PUBLISHED:

17:25 GMT, 15 December 2012

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UPDATED:

17:25 GMT, 15 December 2012

Blackpool netted a goal in each half to see off Blackburn and maintain boss Michael Appleton's unbeaten start to life at Bloomfield Road.

Rovers had more than their fair share of chances in the first half but Wes Thomas had headed Blackpool in front by the time Simon Vukcevic rattled the post for the visitors.

Henning Berg's side were unable to muster anything like a similar threat in a second half of few chances, and switched off late on to let former Rangers defender Kirk Broadfoot net a first Seasiders goal.

Advantage Blackpool: Wes Thomas hit the first at Bloomfield Road

Advantage Blackpool: Wes Thomas hit the first at Bloomfield Road

Match facts

Blackpool: Gilks, Baptiste, Broadfoot, Cathcart, Harris, Osbourne, Gomes, Martinez, Delfouneso, Thomas (Taylor-Fletcher 69), Ince (Dicko 82). Subs not used: Halstead, Eardley, Kevin Phillips, Noguera, Bruna.

Goals: Thomas 22, Broadfoot 81.

Blackburn: Kean, Henley, Dann, Givet, Martin Olsson, Vukcevic (Rochina 74), Lowe, Etuhu, King, Rhodes, Kazim-Richards. Subs not used: Robinson, Dunn, Pedersen, Grant Hanley, Ribeiro, Rosado.

Booked: King.

Att: 15,907.

Ref: Graham Scott.

The latest Championship table, fixtures and results

Appleton has now masterminded two
wins from three outings, having begun his tenure as Ian Holloway's
replacement with four consecutive draws.

The result moves Blackpool three
points and four places above Blackburn, who are floundering in 15th
place in the npower Championship having won once during Berg's nine
matches at the helm.

Bob Harris enjoyed his second start
of the season for Blackpool at left-back in place of the suspended
Steven Crainey, while Gary Taylor-Fletcher was named among the
substitutes after recovering from a hamstring injury.

Berg sprung a surprise by dropping
former England goalkeeper Paul Robinson and naming Jake Kean in his
starting XI – one of four changes to the Blackburn side thrashed 4-1 by
Cardiff eight days ago as Gael Givet, Colin Kazim-Richards and Vukcevic
earned recalls.

Blackpool were perhaps surprised by
the sight of on-loan Galatasaray forward Kazim-Richards launching a
long-throw in the second minute and Vukcevic was allowed space to fire
over.

The visitors were quickest out of the
blocks and Seasiders defender Craig Cathcart required a last-ditch
challenge to deny Jordan Rhodes from Kazim-Richards' cross, before Matt
Gilks made saves in quick succession to thwart Rhodes and Vukcevic.

Opening his account: Kirk Broadfoot (back right) nods Blackpool's second - his first for the club since joining from Rangers

Opening his account: Kirk Broadfoot (back right) nods Blackpool's second – his first for the club since joining from Rangers

It was therefore against the run of
play when Nathan Delfouneso crossed from the left for Thomas to glance
in with the assistance of a statuesque Blackburn defence in the 24th
minute.

Dickson Etuhu had a chance to bring
Blackburn level after the half hour but shot wide from Josh King's
clipped cross as Blackpool failed to fully clear a corner.

Kean was nearly caught out by a
clever Tiago Gomes free-kick from the left before Scott Dann produced a
vital block to divert an Ince effort at the end of a solo run into the
side netting.

But it was almost all-square at the break as Vukcevic rattled the post with a shot on the turn.

Kazim-Richards and Thomas both hobbled back into the action following injury scares during a scrappy start to the second half.

England Under 21 winger Ince appeared
the most likely source of extending Blackpool's lead and, after
breaking free of the Rovers defence to test Kean low to his right, he
exchanged passes with Harris for the latter to fire over in the 65th
minute.

Harris managed to extend Kean when
the Rovers keeper pushed a rasping free-kick behind, but the points were
made safe from the resulting corner.

Gomes' outswinging delivery from the right found Broadfoot to thump home unmarked with nine minutes to play.

Givet thought he had a consolation
but was flagged offside before Dann almost compounded Rovers' misery by
heading against his own post in stoppage time.

Crystal Palace 2 Blackpool 2: Nouha Dicko scores late equaliser for Blackpool

Crystal Palace 2 Blackpool 2: Holloway in a rage over Dicko's late equaliser

PUBLISHED:

17:34 GMT, 8 December 2012

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UPDATED:

21:09 GMT, 8 December 2012

Crystal Palace manager Ian Holloway hit out at the reaction of the Blackpool bench after Nouha Dicko's last-minute goal ensured his old club a dramatic draw.

Holloway left Blackpool only five weeks ago to take charge at promotion-chasing Palace, and his new side appeared on course for the win when Glenn Murray and Owen Garvan overturned Nathan Delfouneso's first-half opener.

Last gasp: Nouha Dicko celebrates the equaliser for Blackpool

Last gasp: Nouha Dicko celebrates the equaliser for Blackpool

Match facts

Crystal Palace: Speroni, Blake (Moritz 56), Ramage, Delaney, Parr, Zaha, Dikgacoi, Garvan, Bolasie (Moxey 90), Jedinak, Murray. Subs Not Used: Price, Wilbraham, Easter, O'Keefe, Gabbidon.

Yellow cards: Bolasie, Blake, Jedinak.

Scorers: Garvan 52, Murray 64.

Blackpool: Gilks, Broadfoot, Baptiste, Cathcart, Crainey, Martinez (Sylvestre 73), Gomes (Dicko 73), Osbourne, Ince, Thomas, Delfouneso (Kevin Phillips 88). Subs Not Used: Halstead, Eardley, Harris, Eccleston.

Yellow cards: Martinez, Crainey, Cathcart, Baptiste, Dicko.

Scorers: Delfouneso 37, Dicko 89.

Att: 15,594

Ref: Keith Stroud (Hampshire)

The latest Championship table, results and fixtures

But Dicko came off the bench to
equalise, prompting celebrations in the dug-out that Holloway believes
went too far in the case of one of Michael Appleton's backroom staff.

The Palace manager said: 'They were
delighted at the end, but I didn't like the reaction of one of the men
on their bench. One of the new fellas looked straight at me when they
equalised. It's a war out there, and I carried my shield very proudly.

'He didn't stare me out. No one can
stare me out. I know Michael wouldn't have done something like that,
he's got more about him than that. But I didn't look round at them when
we scored, did I

'It was not easy to play down the
emotion. I was at Blackpool a long time and had great times. But you
have to move on. I heard them singing “What's the score” to me when
they were winning, but that wasn't happening when we were 2-1 up!'

Blackpool boss Appleton, now unbeaten in six games since succeeding Holloway, dismissed his opposite number's concern.

Levelling up: Owen Garvan scores for Crystal Palace

Levelling up: Owen Garvan scores for Crystal Palace

He said: 'I was probably celebrating when the goal went in.

'But you're talking about looking at
people. What are we supposed to do, keep our heads down I think maybe
Ian was being a little bit tongue in cheek.'

Delfouneso headed Blackpool ahead in
the 17th minute from Tom Ince's cross and the vistors reached the
half-time interval on top.

Opening salvo: Nathan Delfouneso celebrates scoring Blackpool's first goalates scoring Blackpool's first goal

Opening salvo: Nathan Delfouneso celebrates scoring Blackpool's first goal

But Palace responded strongly after
the break, levelling in the 53rd minute when Garvan headed home from
Yannick Bolasie's cross before Murray headed his 18th league goal of the
season in the 65th minute.

The home side appeared on course for
victory until Wes Thomas' low cross was turned home by Dicko, and
Appleton believes his side deserved a draw.

Heading in: Owen Garvin scores for Crystal Palace

Heading in: Owen Garvin scores for Crystal Palace

He added: 'I'm sure some players get
themselves up for different games – former managers or clubs – and I
thought we dealt with them reasonably well. I would have been
desperately disappointed not to take anything out of the game after
having played so well in the first half.

'I knew they would improve in the second half, and it was difficult for 10 or 15 minutes in the second half.

'But just before we got an
equaliser, you could see a bit of momentum building. And once we got
that, I thought we could have gone on and got the winner.'