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Rangers v East Stirling match report

Rangers 3 East Stirling 1: Little double puts Gers another win closer to title

By
Adam Shergold

PUBLISHED:

13:55 GMT, 2 March 2013

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UPDATED:

13:55 GMT, 2 March 2013

Rangers fought back from a half-time deficit to beat East Stirlingshire 3-1 and move another win closer to the Third Division title.

Two days after confirmation the club would not be stripped of five Premier League titles, they moved closer to another accolade and now require just five more wins to secure the championship.

Ibrox was in a buoyant mood as a result, but there were a few nerves jangling when Andy Stirling gave the visitors the lead five minutes before half-time.

However, normal service was resumed after the break, with a double from Andrew Little and another from Lee McCulloch earning a comfortable win.

Rangers now have a 23-point lead at the summit.

Full report and match pics to follow


Double strike: Andrew Little scored twice for Rangers in the win over East Stirling

Double strike: Andrew Little scored twice for Rangers in the win over East Stirling

Match Facts

Rangers: Alexander, Argyriou, Hegarty, Emilson Cribari, Wallace, Naismith (McKay 65), Black, Hutton, Templeton (Aird 90+1), Little, McCulloch (Hemmings 86)

Substitutes not used: Gallagher, Faure

Scorer: Little 50, 62; McCulloch 61

East Stirlingshire: Hay, Shepherd (Gillespie 68), Miller, Buchanan, Maxwell, Turner, Greenhill, Hunter, Stirling, Quinn (Zufle 75), Glasgow

Substitutes not used: Gordon, Wright, Benton

Bookings: Turner, Gillespie, Buchanan

Scorer: Stirling 40

Referee: Brian Colvin (Scotland)

Attendance: 44,534

Dermot Gallagher holocaust Sky Sports

Sky Sports presenters forced to apologise as ex-referee Gallagher makes 'Holocaust' blunder live on TV

Ex-referee Dermot Gallagher says official could have caused 'another Holocaust' during Celtic's 3-0 defeat by Juventus

Gallagher was referring to fifth official missing Alessandro's Matri's shot crossing the line in third minute of the Champions League encounter

Presenters Rob Wotton and Hayley McQueen say sorry minutes later

By
Andy James

PUBLISHED:

11:46 GMT, 13 February 2013

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UPDATED:

12:12 GMT, 13 February 2013

Sky Sports News presenters were forced into an apology this morning after Dermot Gallagher used the word ‘Holocaust’ live on television in reference to the incompetence of the fifth official during Juventus’s first goal last night.

Former referee Gallagher, a regular pundit on the channel, was asked why UEFA’s fifth official was unable to see Alessandro Matri's shot cross the line first time.

Claudio Marchisio followed up but he assistant referee – almost looking through the fifth official – gave the goal to Matri.

Blunder: Gallagher was referring to this incident where the additional assistant referee appeared to miss Alessandro Matri's shot crossing the line as Kelvin Wilson slid in to clear

Blunder: Gallagher was referring to this incident where the additional assistant referee appeared to miss Alessandro Matri's shot crossing the line as Kelvin Wilson slid in to clear

Gallagher said: ‘The problem for me is I don’t think there is any tangible evidence that they do anything.

‘But for a Juventus player following up a shot very, very quickly we could have had another Holocaust last night.

‘I am convinced that the assistant and the guy on the goal line don’t know the ball is in.’

His comments instantly created a storm on Twitter and presenters Rob Wooton and Hayley McQueen apologised live on air minutes later.

Hot water: Gallagher was speaking on Sky Sports News this morning

Hot water: Gallagher was speaking on Sky Sports News this morning

Daniel Dowle posted: ‘And that kids could be the end of Dermot Gallagher on sky sports, don’t think anybody will miss him.’

Peter Mackinnon wrote: ‘Don’t think dermot gallagher will be on sky sports again.’

Bradley Wiggins: Highlight was playing with Paul Weller

Winning the Tour de France and another Olympic gold medal was great, but highlight was jamming with Weller, admits Wiggins

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UPDATED:

00:01 GMT, 29 December 2012

A spectacular 2012 was brought to a fitting conclusion for Bradley Wiggins when he received a knighthood in the New Year Honours – but nothing compared to being on stage with his hero Paul Weller.

Highlights of the 32-year-old's year have included being the first British cyclist to win the Tour de France and winning his fourth Olympic gold medal, while earlier this month he was the runaway winner of the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award.

Scroll down to watch Wiggins and Weller

In the spotlight: Wiggins has had a year to remember after adding Olympic gold to his Tour de France win

In the spotlight: Wiggins has had a year to remember after adding Olympic gold to his Tour de France win

Wiggins is almost as famous for his
love of mod culture as he is for his exploits on two wheels, with
spectators at the Olympic time trial donning fake sideburns in his
honour.

Last week he joined Weller to perform The Jam classic 'That's Entertainment' during a charity concert at Hammersmith Apollo.

And asked for his highlight of 2012, Wiggins said: 'For me it's probably the obvious one, apart from Sports Personality, playing at Hammersmith Apollo with Paul Weller last Wednesday was incredible.

'That topped it for me, and that's not a joke. It was amazing. Playing a Jam song as well, I mean how many people get to do that'

The irreverent personality that has captured the public's imagination perhaps sits oddly with a knighthood, awarded for services to cycling, but Wiggins believes it sends a good message in the age of celebrity culture.

Pleased to meet you: Wiggins with music icons Paul Weller (above) and Liam Gallagher (below)

Pleased to meet you: Wiggins with music icons Paul Weller (above) and Liam Gallagher (below)

Bradley Wiggins

Sir Dave salutes team

Dave Brailsford has paid tribute to the collective effort of those he oversees at British Cycling and Team Sky after he was knighted in the New Year Honours list.

The 48-year-old has received the honour at the end of a year in which he led Great Britain to eight cycling gold medals for a second successive Olympics and Team Sky to an historic one-two in the Tour de France.

On his knighthood for services to cycling and the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics, Brailsford, who is British Cycling performance director and principal of Team Sky, said: 'It is a bit surreal really.

'It is quite humbling and it really is something to try to get my head around.

'I'm very lucky and aware that the sport of cycling has grown and that we have had great success because it is a team effort over a long, long period of time.'

He said: 'It's quite something really. I never imagined that I would ever become a knight so it's an incredible honour but there's a slight element of disbelief, and it will take a while to sink in.

'There was never any doubt whether I'd accept it or not, it was more a case that I never saw myself as a Sir, and I probably never will.

'I don't like profiting from status so it's more for my family. It's nice for my parents and grandparents to be able to say I'm a knight, and for my kids in the future.

'To be deemed good enough to have a knighthood by the establishment is quite nice really, because I've continued to be myself through most of the fame.

'Not all of it's been good, a couple of swear words and things, so it's nice to be able to receive this after everything, it shows you don't have to have a stiff upper lip and say all the right things all the time.

'It's a nice advertisement for our culture I think because so much of it is based on being something you're not with celebrity, so it's reassuring in a way.'

Wiggins had been widely tipped to receive the honour after his superb achievements this year, but he admitted he thought he may have missed out as time ticked by before he finally received notification two weeks ago.

'I was in Spain on a training camp so it came quite late,' he said. 'I actually thought, early December, you normally hear by now, so I thought maybe it wasn't going to happen this time so when it finally did come I thought, “Blimey”.'

French fancy: Wiggins leads team-mate Mark Cavendish on the final stage of the Tour de France

French fancy: Wiggins leads team-mate Mark Cavendish on the final stage of the Tour de France

Here Wiggo! The Brit was then cheered home to win the Olympic Time Trial

Here Wiggo! The Brit was then cheered home to win the Olympic Time Trial

Wiggins admitted he initially struggled for motivation as he thought about trying to follow 2012, but he has thrown himself back into training and is planning to ride both the Giro d'Italia and the Tour de France in 2013.

There is still uncertainty about whether he will bid to defend his Tour crown or support team-mate Chris Froome, who finished second this year.

Wiggins said: “It's about setting new goals and going out and doing something else. It might not top it, it might not ever top it, but you have to go back to work at some point.

'Initially motivation was an issue but you actually crave going back to that routine and that structure. I really enjoyed being in camp again with the team and going back to what got you there in the first place. There are things I still want to do within the sport.

Another one for the collection: Wiggins was also named Sports Personality of the Year

Another one for the collection: Wiggins was also named Sports Personality of the Year

'I'm doing the Tour of Italy and the Tour de France as a new challenge, and that's very much what we're training for at the moment.

'The priority is the Tour of Italy and then we go to the Tour and it could be in a support role to Chris Froome, it could be both of us, it could be me again, it really depends on how the season pans out, on results and form and even whether both of us make it to the Tour.'

Looking further into the future, Wiggins has his sights set on an Olympic swansong in Rio de Janeiro in 2016, where he hopes to return to the track.

'I'd love to go to Rio,' he added. 'That would be an incredible way to finish it all with a fifth gold medal, and I would like it to be back on the track in the team pursuit where it all started in Sydney for me.'

BRADLEY WIGGINS FACTFILE

1980: Born April 28 in Ghent, Belgium before growing up in London. Son of Australian former racing cyclist Gary Wiggins.

1992: Begins track cycling at Herne Hill Velodrome, London.

1997: Wins individual pursuit gold at Junior World Track Championships in Cuba.

2000: March – Silver in team pursuit at Track Cycling World Championships in Manchester.
October – Bronze in team pursuit at Olympic Games in Sydney.

2001: September – Silver in team pursuit at Track Cycling World Championships in Antwerp, Belgium.

2002: July – Silver for England in team pursuit and individual pursuit
at Commonwealth Games in Manchester. Gold in individual pursuit at Track
Cycling World Championships in Stuttgart, Germany.

2003: August – Silver in team pursuit at Track Cycling World Championships in Stuttgart, Germany.
September – Wins opening stage of Tour de l'Avenir.

2004: August – Olympic gold in individual pursuit at Athens Olympics.
Also wins silver in team pursuit alongside Steve Cummings, Paul Manning
and Rob Hayles and bronze in Madison alongside Rob Hayles to become
first Briton since 1964 to win three medals at one Games.

Bradley Wiggins

2005: September – Wins stage eight of Tour de l'Avenir.

2006: July – Makes Tour de France debut, riding for French team Cofidis.

2007: March – Wins gold in the individual pursuit and team pursuit at Track Cycling World Championships in Palma, Majorca.
June – Prologue victory in Dauphine Libere.
July – Finishes fourth in Tour de France prologue in London behind Swiss
winner Fabian Cancellara but his team, Cofidis, later withdraw after
team-mate Cristian Moreni fails a drugs test.

2008: January – Wiggins' estranged father, Gary Wiggins, is discovered unconscious in New South Wales and later dies.
March – Wins individual pursuit, team pursuit and Madison gold at Track Cycling World Championships in Manchester.
August 16 – Successfully defends Olympic individual pursuit title with gold at the Laoshan Velodrome.
August 18 – Olympic team pursuit gold alongside Ed Clancy, Geraint
Thomas and Paul Manning in a world record of three minutes 53.314
seconds.
August 19 – Favourite for Olympic Madison alongside Mark Cavendish but
ninth-placed finish results in Manxman suffering the ignominy of being
the only member of GB's track team to leave the Laoshan Velodrome
without a medal and has a public falling-out with Wiggins.

Bradley Wiggins and Mark Cavendish

October – Releases autobiography titled 'In Pursuit of Glory' detailing his struggle with alcohol after Athens Games.

2009: July – Secures fourth place in Tour de France, matching highest-ever placing by a British rider.
September – Wins British Time-Trial Championship.
October – Wins stage five time-trial and overall title at Jayco Herald Sun Tour in Australia.
December 10 – Signs four-year deal with Team Sky, the BSkyB-backed road
team which is being led by British Cycling performance director Dave
Brailsford.

2010: February 7 – Makes Team Sky debut at Tour of Qatar, helping squad to victory in the race's opening team time-trial.
March – Finishes third overall in the Tour of Murcia.
May – Wins Giro d'Italia prologue to become second Briton to wear race
leader's pink jersey, the maglia rosa. The victory gives Team Sky a
Grand Tour stage win at the first attempt.
July – Finishes 24th on Team Sky's Tour de France debut, upgraded to
23rd after Alberto Contador is stripped of the title for a doping
offence.

2011: March – Finishes third overall in Paris-Nice stage race.
May – Wins fourth stage of Bayern-Rundfahrt as team-mate Geraint Thomas wins overall.
June – Wins traditional Tour de France warm-up Criterium du Dauphine. Wins British Championships road race.
July 8 – Abandons Tour de France after fracturing collarbone in crash on
seventh stage. Wiggins was sixth overall, 10 seconds behind race leader
Thor Hushovd, entering the stage.

Bradley Wiggins is carried into an ambulance

September – Finishes third overall at the Vuelta a Espana, with Team Sky
colleague Chris Froome second. Finishes second in World Championships
time-trial before helping Cavendish win the road race.

2012: February: Wins stage five of Volta ao Algarve.
March – Wins Paris-Nice overall, completing victory with win on stage eight.
April – Triumphs in Tour de Romandie, winning stages one and five.
June – Successfully defends his Criterium du Dauphine title and wins
stage four time-trial for an unprecedented series of results.
July 7 – Takes the Tour de France yellow jersey after stage seven.
July 9 – Enhances hold on maillot jaune ahead of the first rest day with
a first Tour stage win, on the stage nine time-trial to Besancon.
July 21 – Wins the time-trial on the Tour's penultimate day to all but secure victory.
July 22 – Confirmed as Britain's first-ever winner of the Tour de France.
August 1 – Claims gold medal for Team GB at London 2012 in Olympic road time-trial.
November 7 – Taken to hospital after a collision with a car near his
home in Lancashire. Wiggins suffered bruising, a fractured rib, a
bruised lung and a dislocated finger.
December 16 – Wins BBC Sports Personality of the Year award, finishing
ahead of second-placed Jessica Ennis and third-placed Andy Murray.
December 28 – Awarded a knighthood in the New Year Honours list.

East Stirling 2 Rangers 6 match report: Lee McCulloch double helps Gers go five points clear

East Stirling 2 Rangers 6: McCulloch hits two in rout to send Gers five points clear

PUBLISHED:

15:26 GMT, 17 November 2012

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UPDATED:

15:26 GMT, 17 November 2012

Rangers produced a clinical second-half display to defeat East Stirling 6-2 at Ochilview.

The Ibrox side netted four times after the break to extend their lead at the top of Irn-Bru Division Three to five points.

Lee McCulloch opened the scoring from the penalty spot after 12 minutes and East Stirling were dealt a further blow when Phillipp Zufle was ordered off for a poorly-timed challenge on Kevin Kyle.

Andrew Little doubled Rangers' lead after 39 minutes, however the hosts replied just one minute later as Kevin Turner headed home Nathan Shepherd's corner.

Goal machine: Lee McCulloch hit the first from the spot

Goal machine: Lee McCulloch hit the first from the spot

Match facts

East Stirling: Hay, Jackson, Miller, Sean Kelly, Shepherd, Greenhill (Hunter 67), Zufle, McKernon, Maxwell (Herd 65), Turner, Quinn (Begg 73). Subs not used: Gordon, Hume.
Sent Off: Zufle (33).

Goals: Turner 41, Quinn 58 pen.

Rangers: Alexander, Argyriou, McCulloch, Hegarty, Wallace, Little (Aird 78), Black, Macleod (Crawford 83), McKay, Shiels (Naismith 68), Kyle. Subs not used: Scott Gallagher, Hutton.

Booked: Hegarty, Little.

Goals: McCulloch 12 pen, Little 39, Wallace 49, Kyle 63, Naismith 71, McCulloch 82 (pen).

Referee: George Salmond.

Attendance: 2,854.

The latest Scottish Third Division table, fixtures and results

But Lee Wallace re-established a
two-goal advantage for Ally McCoist's side four minutes after the break
before their lead was cut for the second time when Paul Quinn slotted
home from the penalty spot.

Rangers were rewarded for their
dominance throughout much of the second half when Kevin Kyle and Kai
Naismith both netted to put the game well out of the reach of their
opponents and McCulloch added a sixth goal eight minutes from time.

The visitors enjoyed the majority of
the early possession and Kyle passed up a good chance to open the
scoring after eight minutes when he failed to hit the target after a
neat passing exchange between Ian Black and Wallace.

The large Rangers support did not
have to wait much longer to see their side break the deadlock, though,
as referee George Salmond pointed to the spot after Sean Kelly hacked
down Dean Shiels.
McCulloch stepped up and calmly slotted the resulting penalty low beyond Hay.

Barrie McKay went close to doubling
the visitors' lead when he raced on to Lewis McLeod's through ball and
chipped the ball over the onrushing Hay, fortunately for East Stirling,
though, the ball rolled past the right-hand post.

The hosts responded in a positive fashion, forcing a number of corners that troubled the Rangers defence.

Scott Maxwell tried to catch out Neil Alexander with a shot from outside the box, however the keeper comfortably gathered.

The task facing East Stirling was made even greater when Zufle was shown a straight red card for a reckless challenge on Kyle.

Hay produced a good low stop to deny
Black as Rangers tried to take advantage of their one-man advantage and
they extended their lead six minutes before half-time when Little's
volley looped over the keeper and into the net.

But Turner connected with Nathan
Shepherd's pinpoint cross one minute later to restore some hope for the
hosts going into the break.

Rangers began the second half
brightly and re-established a two goal lead four minutes after the
restart when Wallace burst forward and drove a low shot past the
helpless Hay.

The home side were presented with the
perfect opportunity to reduce the deficit after 58 minutes when
McCulloch bundled over Shepherd inside the box and Quinn made no mistake
in dispatching the penalty.

Black came agonisingly close to
scoring his first goal for Rangers on the hour mark as his shot cannoned
back off the inside of the post.

Kyle then opened his account for the Ibrox club when he swept the ball home from close range after Andy Little's mishit shot.

Naismith replaced Shiels after 68
minutes and the 20-year-old wasted little time in getting on the
scoresheet, slotting home McKay's cut-back from the edge of the box.

McCulloch converted from the spot for
the second time with eight minutes remaining after Steven Jackson
handled inside the box – his 19th goal of the season.

Substitute Fraser Aird flashed a shot
wide of the target in the closing minutes, but Rangers were unable to
extend their lead further.

Liam Gallagher in the bad books: Etihad Stadium match zone

Etihad Stadium match zone: Liam Gallagher in the bad books

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UPDATED:

08:52 GMT, 7 November 2012

GALLAGHER IN THE DOGHOUSE

Liam Gallagher's priorities are 'City, kids, wife' if a chance meeting with Mike Summerbee is anything to go by.

The singer-songwriter was sent out to fetch some late-night apple pie by his wife when he chanced upon City's club ambassador.

'Before long I'd forgotten about the apple pie I'd gone out for and ended up in the pub with him having a few drinks,' revealed Gallagher.

'I ended up in the doghouse with the missus after that.'

A man's man: Liam Gallagher loves Manchester City... and his missus

A man's man: Liam Gallagher loves Manchester City… and his missus

A controversial call

Roberto Mancini made a controversial selection by putting Courtney Meppen-Walter on the bench.

Meppen-Walter was arrested in September on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving after a man and a woman died in a collision with his Mercedes.

The England Under 17 defender has been bailed as policecontinue their enquiries.

No joke

Ajax's early goal was no laughing matter for the Manchester City supporters who were crammed into the Etihad Stadium but manager Roberto Mancini appeared to see things a little differently.

As Siem de Jong started celebrating his opening goal in the 10th minute, Mancini began grinning towards his players for the defensive blunder.

Bizarre.

Ref rant: Roberto Mancini complained to the officials after City drew with Ajax

Ref rant: Roberto Mancini complained to the officials after City drew with Ajax

A tale of two philosophies

Manchester City's new training academy will soon house up to 400 players and staff, but they didn't have a single homegrown player in the team on Tuesday night.

Ajax, who fielded seven academy graduates for the 3-1 victory over City at the Amsterdam ArenA last month, had another seven on the field at the Etihad.

Despite the vastly different philosophies, City are second in the Barclays Premier League.

Ajax, after defeat at the weekend, are fifth in Eredivisie.

Value for money

The entire Ajax team, including the seven players they had on the substitutes' bench, cost less than 10million to put together.

That's approximately how much Manchester City pay to striker Carlos Tevez in wages over the course of a year.

Yours for 10m... and we'll even throw in the subs: The Ajax squad

Yours for 10m… and we'll even throw in the subs: The Ajax squad

Rangers 7 Alloa 0 match report: Dean Shiels, Lee McCulloch, Robbie Crawford and Barrie McKay score

Rangers 7 Alloa 0: McCoist's men rebound from midweek mauling to sting Wasps

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UPDATED:

17:32 GMT, 3 November 2012

Rangers bounced back from their midweek Scottish Communities League Cup exit to Inverness in style with an emphatic 7-0 thrashing of Alloa in the William Hill Scottish Cup.

Dean Shiels, Lee McCulloch and Barrie McKay netted a double each and Robbie Crawford was also on the scoresheet against Paul Hartley's high-flying Irn-Bru Second Division side.

Anestis Argyriou and Fraser Aird were both drafted into the Rangers side for the third round tie, with Lee Wallace ruled out with a dead leg and Kyle Hutton dropped to the bench.

Let the drubbing begin: Dean Shiels fires Rangers a goal to the good at Ibrox

Let the drubbing begin: Dean Shiels fires Rangers a goal to the good at Ibrox

Match facts

Rangers: Alexander, Argyriou (Crawford 54), Perry, Emilson Cribari (Naismith 72), Hegarty, Little, Black, Macleod, Aird (McKay 61), Shiels, McCulloch. Subs not used: Scott Gallagher, Hutton.

Goals: Shiels 2, 21, McCulloch 33, 72, Crawford 73, McKay 82, 89.

Alloa: Bain, Doyle, Gordon, Marr, Meggatt, Simmons (Grehan 55), Ryan McCord, Young, Holmes, Low (Docherty 74), Cawley (Thomson 79). Subs not used: McDowall, Ross McCord.

Sent Off: Doyle (78).

Booked: Gordon.

Att: 25,478.

Ref: Iain Brines.

Shiels, Andy Little and Lewis Macleod were all passed fit to start despite nursing knocks from the clash with Inverness.

Alloa were boosted by the return of skipper Darren Young following a sickness bug but on-loan Aberdeen forward Mitch Megginson was unavailable for the trip to Ibrox.

Rangers knew they needed a positive reaction following the midweek defeat and they enjoyed the best possible start to the game.

An Aird corner broke for Shiels, whose deflected shot found its way through a sea of bodies and into the bottom corner after just two minutes.

Chris Hegarty then surged forward from the left-back position before rifling just over the crossbar from distance.
It was Shiels who doubled the advantage when he grabbed his second of the day after 21 minutes.

McCulloch was the provider with a lovely pass for the Northern Irishman and the offside flag stayed down as Shiels slotted past goalkeeper Scott Bain.

No mistake: Lee McCulloch slots home the fourth

No mistake: Lee McCulloch slots home the fourth

Skipper McCulloch then helped himself to a goal when he unleashed a powerful strike from just inside the box after 33 minutes.

The Gers utility man could have netted again just before the break with a ferocious effort that fizzed just over.

Alloa had failed to trouble the Gers defence in the first half but carved out a couple of decent efforts in quick succession after the break.

A well-struck free-kick from just outside the area from Nicky Low was comfortably gathered by Neil Alexander.

Kevin Cawley then saw his hooked effort curl just past the far post after evading the goalkeeper as the Wasps desperately tried to salvage the tie.

Celebration time: Two-goal Shiels helped Rangers to a convincing win

Celebration time: Two-goal Shiels helped Rangers to a convincing win

There was concern for Rangers 10 minutes into the second half when Argyriou was stretchered off after crumpling to the turf with what appeared to be an ankle problem.

The Greek defender was replaced by youngster Crawford, before Aird made way for the introduction of McKay.

McKay was immediately involved in the action when he teed up the shot for Shiels, who was denied his hat-trick by the post.

The teenager then pounced on the rebound and was denied the sight of the net bulging by the quick reaction of Michael Doyle who cleared off the line.

However, any respite for Alloa was brief as Rangers found the back of the net twice in quick succession.

It's so easy: Barrie McKay hit a late brace to increase Alloa's woe

It's so easy: Barrie McKay hit a late brace to increase Alloa's woe

Shiels squared into the path of McCulloch and all that was required was a simple tap in from the captain after 72 minutes, before Crawford supplied a low finish from a Shiels cut-back a minute later.

There was worse to come for Alloa when Doyle was shown a red card for a challenge on Hegarty after 79 minutes.
McKay then added his name to the scoresheet three minutes later with a superb shot from outside the box, before completing the rout with a well struck drive with a minute to go.

Mark Halsey calls in police after Twitter abuse

Referee Halsey calls in police after Twitter abuse following Anfield clash

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UPDATED:

21:00 GMT, 24 September 2012

Mark Halsey has made a complaint to Greater Manchester Police after he was the subject of malicious tweets.

The 51-year-old Premier League referee, who has battled cancer, was abused on Twitter following his handling of Liverpool’s game against Manchester United on Sunday. He sent off Liverpool’s Jonjo Shelvey and gave United a controversial late penalty that settled the game.

Off: Shelvey is given his marching orders by Halsey

Off: Shelvey is given his marching orders by Halsey

Two tweets were sent by supporters who claimed to be Liverpool fans, both of which were met with outrage from other users.

One, from an account named @johnwareing1, read: ‘I hope Mark Halsey gets cancer again and dies’ while one from @lfcjohn259 read: ‘Mark Halsey should’ve died of cancer.’

The post from @lfcjohn259 was deleted and the @johnwareing1 account was removed completely. But Halsey, who is expected to referee Tuesday night’s Capital One Cup tie between Southampton and Sheffield Wednesday, was so upset that he has asked GMP to investigate.

Complaint: Halsey has contacted Greater Manchester Police

Complaint: Halsey has contacted Greater Manchester Police

What action the force can take, though, remains to be seen. Last week Daniel Thomas, who plays for Port Talbot in the Welsh Premier League, was not charged for an abusive tweet about diver Tom Daley because the message was deemed ‘not so grossly offensive that criminal charges need to be brought’. However, the abuse of Halsey has been widely condemned.

A Professional Game Match Officials statement read: ‘Our main concern is towards Mark and his family, and as with all officials, there is a backroom team who are there for them. None of the Select Group match officials are on social media.’

Former Premier League referee Dermot Gallagher said: ‘I know Mark, and he certainly will be shaken. Some things cross the boundaries, and this has.’

London 2012 Paralympics: Jon-Allan Butterworth wins silver in C5 individual pursuit

Cycling medals keep flowing as Butterworth provides silver service again

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UPDATED:

16:53 GMT, 1 September 2012

Jon-Allan Butterworth won men's C5 four-kilometres individual pursuit silver on an eventful third day of Paralympic competition for Great Britain at the London 2012 velodrome.

After Neil Fachie and Barney Storey won men's blind and visually impaired time-trial gold and Sarah Storey triumphed in the women's C4/5 500m time-trial, Butterworth clocked four minutes 39.586 seconds, but Australia's Michael Gallagher held off the charge to win in 4mins 35.297secs.

Butterworth, who lost his left arm while serving in Iraq with the RAF in 2007, had to settle for a second silver of his debut Games.

Impressive: Jon-Allan Butterworth with his hard-earned silver medal

Impressive: Jon-Allan Butterworth with his hard-earned silver medal

Jody Cundy bounced back from disappointment in his favoured event to claim bronze in the men's C4 4km individual pursuit.

Cundy clocked 1:05.317 after 1km – a time good enough to win one-kilometre time-trial gold on day two, when officials ruled he could not restart – before catching Colombia's Diego Duenas little more than a lap later.

Butterworth told Channel 4: 'I went out fast for the first two or three kilometres to try and match his pace. But he's been racing a long time and he's a great rider and I haven't been doing it that long.

'I just wanted to give him a race. I've got the team sprint tomorrow. I hope I can medal in that as well. It's not a bad [Games] debut.'

In action: Butterworth said his Games debut was not bad

In action: Butterworth said his Games debut was not bad

More to follow.

Manchester City return to training

Champions back in training: Man City put troops through paces in bid to defend title

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UPDATED:

15:57 GMT, 5 July 2012

The hard work starts here.

Manchester City head into the unknown next season as defending Premier League champions. Everyone is going to want a piece. They will be the scalp on each and every agenda in the top flight.

Back in action: Micah Richards, Vincent Kompany and several more of the Manchester City squad returned to training on Thursday

Back in action: Micah Richards, Vincent Kompany and several more of the Manchester City squad returned to training on Thursday

Back in action: Micah Richards, Vincent Kompany and several more of the Manchester City squad returned to training on Thursday

Back in action: Micah Richards, Vincent Kompany and several more of the Manchester City squad returned to training on Thursday

And on Thursday, six weeks before they kick-off at home to newly-promoted Southampton, the team were back at Carrington. Well, some of them were.

Those who have endured – or enjoyed in the case of David Silva – a summer of international action are on an extended break, leaving more of the lesser known faces to jostle for the manager's attention.

Roque Santa Cruz, remember him A 19million signing during Mark Hughes' reign who last kicked a ball for the club in January 2011.

Sticking the boot in: Even Carlos Tevez took full part... something he did his best to avoid last season

Sticking the boot in: Even Carlos Tevez took full part… something he did his best to avoid last season

Friends reunited: Roque Santa Cruz and Kolo Toure, two players likely to leave this summer, took full part also

Friends reunited: Roque Santa Cruz and Kolo Toure, two players likely to leave this summer, took full part also

Wayne Bridge was there also, having returned from a loan spell at Sunderland, while Vladimir Weiss, another loan ranger, also took part.

As for Premier League regulars, both Yaya Toure and his brother Kolo stretched their legs, as did Carlos Tevez, who seemed in good spirits despite speculation linking him with a move away.

And captain fantastic Vincent Kompany, fresh from modelling the new kit alongside former Oasis star Noel Gallagher, dusted off his boots to grab a piece of the action.

But the prize for most bizarre appearances goes to former City boss Stuart Pearce, who had a watching brief on the sidelines. He later caught up with Micah Richards, who is but of Team GB.

Noel Gallagher launches Manchester City home kit

Noel's in good Kompany: Oasis legend shows off new City kit, but will Van Persie be wearing it

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UPDATED:

10:36 GMT, 5 July 2012

Is this the shirt that Robin van Persie will be wearing next season

Following the news that Van Persie will not sign a new deal at Arsenal, Manchester City are one of the favorites to snap up the Dutch striker.

City are prepared to offer a whopping 225,000-per-week, but face competition from neighbours Manchester United who are also keen to sign the 28-year-old.

A kit of alright: Vincent Kompany and Noel Gallagher show off City's new home kit

A kit of alright: Vincent Kompany and Noel Gallagher show off City's new home kit

And if he does sign for the Premier League champions then this is the kit he will run out in next season

City launched their new Umbro kit with a little bit of help from former Oasis guitarist and lifelong City fan Noel Gallagher.

The High Flying Bird's singer joined skipper Vincent Kompany as part of the Umbro Show Your City campaign.

The City skipper returned the favour by introducing Noel on stage to a crowd of 80,000 at the Rock Werchter festival in his home country last weekend.

Pain and simple: City will wear a classic sky blue kit next season with a dark blue collar

Pain and simple: City will wear a classic sky blue kit next season with a dark blue collar

Noel is not the first Gallagher to help City launch a kit as the club turned to younger brother Liam last summer to show off the shirt they went on to win the league title in.

Noel will hope City can repeat the success of last season in the new kit.