Tag Archives: goalkeeper

Swansea 0 Southampton 0 match report: With nothing to play for Swans and Saints play out draw

Swansea 0 Southampton 0: With nothing to play for Swans and Saints play out draw

PUBLISHED:

15:52 GMT, 20 April 2013

|

UPDATED:

17:08 GMT, 20 April 2013

Southampton edged closer to Premier League survival as they ground out a goalless draw in a lacklustre encounter at Swansea.

The Saints may feel aggrieved they did not leave south Wales with all three points after Adam Lallana had an effort ruled out for handball after an error by Michel Vorm just before half-time.

Nathan Dyer went closest for the hosts as Maya Yoshida cleared his effort off the line, but in truth neither side showed sufficient quality in the final third to craft a winner in what was, for large parts, a tepid game.

Chalked off: Adam Lallana (right) sees his goal disallowed for a foul on Swansea goalkeeper Michel Vorm

Chalked off: Adam Lallana (right) sees his goal disallowed for a foul on Swansea goalkeeper Michel Vorm

MATCH FACTS

Swansea: Vorm, Rangel, Chico, Williams, Davies, Britton, de Guzman, Hernandez (Ki 61), Michu, Dyer, Moore (Routledge 46).

Subs Not Used: Tremmel, Taylor, Monk, Shechter, Tiendalli.

Southampton: Boruc, Clyne, Yoshida, Hooiveld, Fox, Schneiderlin, Cork, Steven Davis, Lallana (Puncheon 77), Rodriguez (Mayuka 88), Lambert (Ramirez 63).

Subs Not Used: Kelvin Davis, Fonte, Ward-Prowse, Shaw.

Att: 20,561

Ref: Mark Halsey (Lancashire).

Latest Premier League table and results

Not that Southampton will mind too much.

Mauricio Pochettino's side are now eight points clear of the drop zone, and are well-placed to secure survival having been written off in some quarters at the start of the season.

Swansea can also look forward to another top-flight season, but Michael Laudrup will be concerned that their campaign is tailing off as they equalled their previous longest winless run in the Premier League of five games.

Swansea had made a promising start, with their movement causing the visitors problems without creating any clear-cut opportunities.

The best early chance fell to Jonathan de Guzman. Pablo Hernandez's pull-back fell behind Michu to the Dutch international, but several Southampton defenders were out quickly to block.

Doing the splits: Swansea's Chico Flores (right) tackles Southampton captain Lallana

Doing the splits: Swansea's Chico Flores (right) tackles Southampton captain Lallana

Racing away: Nathaniel Clyne takes on Swansea full back Ben Davies

Racing away: Nathaniel Clyne takes on Swansea full back Ben Davies

Luke Moore then narrowly failed to get on the end of Dyer's cross as Saints struggled for a foothold in the early going.

But Pochettino's men grew into the game, with the industrious Jack Cork forcing Vorm into the game's first save with a hopeful effort from the edge of the box.

Vorm made an excellent stop to deny Jay Rodriguez after 25 minutes, getting down low to hold the volley after Rickie Lambert had teed up his colleague.

I'll have that: Southampton goalkeeper Artur Boruc (centre) claims the ball ahead of Luke Moore

I'll have that: Southampton goalkeeper Artur Boruc (centre) claims the ball ahead of Luke Moore

Vorm continued to be the busier
goalkeeper and had to be at full stretch to deny Lambert his 15th goal
of the season, the Dutchman tipping over a free-kick that was arrowing
into the top corner.

But the keeper blotted his copybook
seconds later, failing to hold a simple Rodriguez cross for Lallana to
bundle in, only for the whistle to go for handball against the Saints
midfielder.

Laudrup removed Moore at the break and introduced Wayne Routledge in a bid to find some inspiration.

Why Lallana asks the linesman why his goal was disallowed

Why Lallana asks the linesman why his goal was disallowed

PREMIER LEAGUE – AS IT STANDS

PREMIER LEAGUE TABLE

The change almost paid dividends just two
minutes after the resumption, but Michu could not keep his header down
from the winger's cross.

Hernandez engineered another promising situation on the hour as he skipped past Nathaniel Clyne and put a teasing ball across the six-yard box, but there were no white shirts lurking to tap in.

Swansea went closer still six minutes later.

Lallana let the ball run loose inside his own area and Michu pounced to set up Dyer, but Yoshida got himself in the right place to clear off the line.

Southampton dropped ever deeper and packed midfield as the pressure increased and Daniel Fox survived an ambitious handball appeal as he blocked substitute Ki Sung-yueng's volley.

Artur Boruc then made two excellent saves as he denied De Guzman and Dyer when the pair were in on goal.

And with time running out the visitors almost snatched a winner.

Ki was muscled off the ball by Steven Davis, but Vorm sharply held Emmanuel Mayuka's effort.

Well defended: Flores steers Jay Rodriguez away from danger

Well defended: Flores steers Jay Rodriguez away from danger

Tricky: Former Southampton trainee Nathan Dyer (left) cuts inside of Steven Davis

Tricky: Former Southampton trainee Nathan Dyer (left) cuts inside of Steven Davis

Julio Cesar: I"m staying in London, even if QPR go down

Cesar: Even if QPR are relegated, I'll be staying in London

By
Declan Warrington

PUBLISHED:

15:41 GMT, 9 April 2013

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UPDATED:

17:11 GMT, 10 April 2013

Julio Cesar has revealed he is determined to remain in London, even if QPR are relegated from the Premier League.

The talented Brazil goalkeeper was a surprise summer signing at Loftus Road and has been one of their rare transfer successes and even rarer consistent performers over the course of a disastrous season.

Such is the likelihood that QPR are to be relegated back to the Championship, Cesar has been reported as being on the verge of a move to AC Milan, whose cross-city rivals Inter he left last summer.

Classy: Julio Cesar used to be considered one of the world's best goalkeepers

Classy: Julio Cesar used to be considered one of the world's best goalkeepers

Stopping short of committing himself to QPR, however, Cesar is adamant he regardless wishes to continue to play in the Premier League and insists he has no intention of undermining his time at Inter by moving to Milan.

'I'm still an Interista in my heart,' he told Corriere della Sport. 'I’m learning a new language in London, the city is beautiful and my family is happy.

'I was certainly not treated well by Inter. I love Italy, but I’ve been won over by the environment here.'

On his knees: But even he cannot save QPR's season from disaster

On his knees: But even he cannot save QPR's season from disaster

Cesar's apparent desire to remain in London significantly limits his options if he is to remain in the Premier League but it is not unthinkable that he will secure a suitable move.

Fulham were in January interested in recruiting a new goalkeeper although Mark Schwarzer's return to form means that stance may have changed, West Ham had attempted but failed to sign Paul Robinson and the Arsenal future of Wojciech Szczesny remains uncertain.

Should Watford gain promotion to the Premier League there is also a chance he could join their growing overseas contingent but the likelihood of each remains to be seen.

Chris Ashton backed by Saracens coach Paul Gustard

Ashton backed by Saracens coach Gustard after poor Six Nations

By
Rob Wildman

PUBLISHED:

21:49 GMT, 2 April 2013

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UPDATED:

07:14 GMT, 3 April 2013

Chris Ashton, the under-fire England wing, has received the backing of Saracens defence coach Paul Gustard.

The club head into Saturday’s Heineken Cup quarter-final against Ulster at Twickenham believing Ashton is in excellent form despite his poor Six Nations campaign that led to an inquest into his tackling.

Ashton scored his first try in almost two months last Saturday, against Wasps, and Gustard expects more in the Heineken Cup.

Out of sorts: Ashton scored just one try in the Six Nations

Out of sorts: Ashton scored just one try in the Six Nations

Jumping for joy: Chris Ashton celebrates after scoring against Wasps

Jumping for joy: Ashton celebrates after scoring against Wasps last weekend

‘Even if Chris had not scored a try, it does not mean he’s not played well,’ Gustard said. ‘He’s done really, really well for us in the last two weeks and is in a good place after a good show at Wasps.

The problem of being a wing in rugby is that it’s a bit like being a goalkeeper in football. You are the last line in defence; a mistake can cost you.

‘Chris is not a bad defender. Sometimes, he misses a tackle but so what Everyone misses a tackle,’ Gustard added.

On the run: Ashton charges upfield playing for Saracens

On the run: Ashton charges upfield playing for Saracens

He could also be Ashton’s coach on England’s summer tour of Argentina if he does not make the Lions trip to Australia.

Gustard is taking over temporarily because Andy Farrell will help coach the Lions with Warren Gatland.

‘I’m not going to change the way England defend,’ he said. ‘The system has worked well over the last season. It’s a matter of learning and developing as a coach.’

Blair Turgott scores hat-trick as West Ham beat QPR 3-1 in a friendly at Upton Park

VIDEO: West Ham and QPR field first-team stars in friendly, but 18-year-old Turgott steals the show at Upton Park

By
Andy James

PUBLISHED:

19:13 GMT, 19 March 2013

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UPDATED:

20:56 GMT, 19 March 2013

Blair Turgott stole the show with a hat-trick on Tuesday afternoon as West Ham saw off QPR 3-1 in a friendly at Upton Park.

The 18-year-old scored twice in the first half before completing his hat-trick early in the second period in a match which saw both sides field a number of players from their first-team squad.

Adel Taarabt scored a free-kick just after half-time for QPR, who gave run-outs to Nedum Onuoha,
Jamie Mackie, Esteban Granero, Jay Bothroyd, Shaun Derry, Luke Young and Junior Hoilett.

Scroll down for highlights

Star: 18-year-old Blair Turgott (second left) scored a hat-trick for West Ham at Upton Park

Star: 18-year-old Blair Turgott (second left) scored a hat-trick for West Ham at Upton Park

High-profile friendly: Marouane Chamakh and Shaun Derry compete for a header

High-profile friendly: Marouane Chamakh and Shaun Derry compete for a header

West Ham's team featured Marouane Chamakh, Wellington Paulista, James Tomkins, Jordan Spence and George McCartney, who hasn't featured for the first team since December due to a knee injury.

Turgott opened the scoring in the 12th minute, with a long-range effort that flew into the top corner, before adding a second 16 minutes later with a measured, curling finish into the bottom corner.

Taarabt's free-kick two minutes after half-time reduced QPR's deficit to 2-1 before Turgott cut inside right back Young before firing an unstoppable shot into the top corner in the 52nd minute.

The game also featured Canada Under 20 international goalkeeper Jordan Santiago, 21, who is on trail with West Ham.

VIDEO: Watch Blair Turgott's hat-trick

Peter Shilton drink-driving: England legend banned from road

England legend Peter Shilton banned from road after admitting drink-driving charge

By
Ben Kendall, Press Association

PUBLISHED:

11:58 GMT, 19 March 2013

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UPDATED:

14:15 GMT, 19 March 2013

Former England goalkeeper Peter Shilton has been banned from the road after admitting drink-driving.

The 63-year-old pleaded guilty to the charge during a 15-minute hearing at Colchester Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday morning.

The court heard that he was found to have more than double the legal amount of alcohol in his system when he was breathalysed on February 24.

Ban: Former England goalkeeper Peter Shilton, pictured with his partner Stephanie Hayward, was banned from the road after admitting drink-driving at Colchester Magistrates Court

Ban: Former England goalkeeper Peter Shilton, pictured with his partner Stephanie Hayward, was banned from the road after admitting drink-driving at Colchester Magistrates Court

He was driving a 2010-registered Jaguar XF near the Essex home of his girlfriend, Stephanie Hayward, at the time and was caught after an anonymous tip-off to police.

As he left court, Shilton, who won a record 125 England caps, said: 'I’ve nothing to say, really – just that I had a very fair hearing.'

He left in a taxi from the nearby Colchester Town railway station.

Magistrate Ilona Perkins-Van Mil banned Shilton from driving for 20 months and ordered him to pay fines and costs totalling 1,020.

The court heard that Shilton had been drinking wine at a family celebration throughout the day but did not think he was over the limit.

Admission: Shilton attended a 15-minute hearing, where he pleaded guilty

Admission: Shilton attended a 15-minute hearing, where he pleaded guilty

Prosecutor Joseph Stickings said police were called to Ms Hayward’s home at about 8.35pm.

They had received an anonymous tip-off that a man, who seemed drunk, had been driving nearby.

'As police were speaking to a woman at the address, Mr Shilton pulled up behind the police car,' Stickings said.

'The officer spoke to him and could smell alcohol on his breath. He was tested and provided a positive breath test.'

Shilton wore a charcoal suit with a tie today and spoke only to confirm his name and address and enter a plea.

He arrived with singer Ms Hayward, who sat in court wearing a black dress with lace sleeves.

Legend Former Nottingham Forest, Stoke and Derby No 1 Shilton represented England a record 125 times

Legend Former Nottingham Forest, Stoke and Derby No 1 Shilton represented England a record 125 times

Paul Tawn, mitigating, said Shilton
would find it difficult to pay any fine because his finances were
'complicated' as he is currently going through a divorce and selling his
house.

He added: 'He’d had a very pleasant day at a family celebration and had consumed wine with meals throughout the day.

'He had gone to move his car closer to his partner’s address because he had an early start.

'He didn’t travel far, just a couple of streets, and wasn’t driving very quickly at all.

'He was aware he had consumed alcohol but it was throughout the day so he did not think he was over the limit – if he had, he would not have pulled up behind the police officer.'

Paying the penalty: Shilton just fails to save a spot-kick during the 1990 World Cup semi-final shootout

Paying the penalty: Shilton just fails to save a spot-kick during the 1990 World Cup semi-final shootout

Tawn described the arrest as a 'matter
of deep regret' for Shilton, who has three points on his licence
following a speeding offence in March 2011.

Perkins-Van Mil warned Shilton he could face custody if he breached the ban and ordered him to pay the fine in full before leaving the building.

As well as appearing 125 times for his country, Shilton played more than 1,000 competitive matches for 11 different clubs including Leicester, Stoke, Nottingham Forest, Derby and Southampton during his career.

Mor Diouf scores 70-yard winner two minutes from time for Supersport United against Mamelodi Sundowns

Bury it like Beckham! Senegalese defender scores 70-yard winner two minutes from time

By
David Kent

PUBLISHED:

17:41 GMT, 13 March 2013

|

UPDATED:

17:41 GMT, 13 March 2013

Only the greats of the game including David Beckham, Xabi Alonso and…well, Maynor Figueroa score from their own half, but it looks like the trio have been trumped by a Senegalese defender.

While the above were all just inside their own half when they famously scored from distance, Mor Diouf ended up beating the opposition goalkeeper in a South African Premier League match from an incredible 70 yards!

Mor Diouf's 70-yard wonder goal

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Even more impressive was the fact the goal came two minutes from time, with the defender helping his Supersport United side defeat Mamelodi Sundowns 1-0 in a home clash last weekend.

Judging by the celebrations after, it was Supersport boss Gavin Hunt that was more impressed with the goal following his excited run down the touchline like Jose Mourinho, while Diouf just stood there and folded his arms like it was something he did every week.

Hunt said of the strike: ‘It's something that wins games as tight as this. Once he hit it, I knew it was a goal because I saw where the goalkeeper was and he hit it sweetly.’

The result moved Supersport up into a mid-table seventh spot and left the Sundowns in 11th, just five points off the bottom two.

How does Diouf's effort compare to Beckham, Alonso and Figueroa's strikes

Derby 1 Chelsea 2: Alex Kiwomya"s late strike sends holders into FA Youth Cup semi-final

Derby 1 Chelsea 2: Kiwomya's late strike sends holders into FA Youth Cup semi-finals

By
Adam Shergold

PUBLISHED:

02:06 GMT, 9 March 2013

|

UPDATED:

02:08 GMT, 9 March 2013

Chelsea's defence of the FA Youth Cup remains alive after they negotiated a tricky quarter-final assignment at Derby County thanks to Alex Kiwomya's late strike.

The Blues were matched all the way by a talented Derby side but eventually prevailed when Kiwomya, nephew of former Arsenal player Chris, found the bottom corner with a sweet drive on 82 minutes.

Extra time looked likely as Derby, who claimed a Premier League scalp in Manchester City in the last round, sniffed another when the excellent Mason Bennett equalised Lewis Baker's 16th minute penalty.

Traget man: Chelsea's Jeremie Boga has an effort on goal

Traget man: Chelsea's Jeremie Boga has an effort on goal

But when Kiwomya received a through ball from substitute Charlie Colkett, he spun and fired beyond Rams goalkeeper Ross Etheridge to kill their hopes.

The win means Chelsea will face either Hull City or Liverpool in the last four as they seek to emulate last year's success.

Chelsea took the lead in controversial circumstances just after the quarter-hour – Reece Mitchell burst through the heart of the Derby defence and was clattered by Etheridge inside the box.

The keeper was fortunate not to be sent off for denying a clear goalscoring opportunity, referee Chris Sarginson showing mercy with just a yellow card.

Lewis Baker wasn't so sympathetic, however, finding the bottom corner with a textbook penalty while Mitchell hobbled off.

The Premier League side should have added to their lead as they controlled the first half, and Alex Kiwomya was guilty of missing two golden opportunities within a minute of each other.

Goal-den boy: Alex Kiwomya celebrates his strike

Goal-den boy: Alex Kiwomya celebrates his strike

First, neat interplay between Baker and Jeremie Boga on the edge of the box teed Kiwomya up 12 yards out, but he somehow missed the target.

On Chelsea's next break, the front man was presented with an even easier chance by Baker, but his powerful shot directly in front of goal was blocked by Etheridge.

And there was nearly a sting in the tale when Bennett rose above Alex Davey to head an Andrew Dales cross against the post in the second minute of stoppage time.

It was their best effort of a first half in which they struggled to keep the ball for any length of time.

Jamie Hanson, goalscoring hero in the victories over Ipswich Town and Manchester City in the last two rounds, curled a vicious free-kick over the bar, but other sights of goal had been few and far between.

The hosts were energised by the half-time break and 16-year-old Bennett, the club's youngest first team debutant and goalscorer, and an England Under 17 starlet, began to show his class.

He warmed the hands of Mitchell Beeney with a hit from 30 yards and then scored the equaliser on 55 minutes – although whether he meant it only he knows.

Blues brothers: Chelsea are through to semi-finals

Blues brothers: Chelsea are through to semi-finals

Tearing down the left side after robbing Fankaty Dabo of the ball, Bennett cut inside and surely intended to pick out a teammate in the centre with a low ball. It took a deflection off a Chelsea foot, however, and left Beeney helpless.

With his next touch of the ball, Bennett crossed for Andrew Dales inside the box. The midfielder unleashed a powerful effort which cannoned back off the crossbar.

But when Kiwomya struck it was a decisive blow, Derby unable to respond despite the encouragement of a 4,000-strong crowd.

In fact, Chelsea could have added to their lead in stoppage time when Jeremie Boga's lopping shot struck the top of the crossbar.

With the last kick of the game, Hanson was nearly Derby's hero again but his free-kick on the left clipped the top of the bar.

Blues brothers: Chelsea are through to semi-finals

Darren Wassall, Derby youth team coach, said: 'On the balance of the second half chances and play, then certainly we could have taken it to extra time.

'We said to the lads at half time you've seen how the crowd have got up in the last five minutes of the half and that's without scoring. So if you do score, this 4,000 crowd will be right behind you.

'When we equalised and when Mason went through, we had a real lively 20 minutes after the break. We had hit the bar and had a couple of chances we easily could have scored from. That's when we were in the ascendancy and that's when we should have taken advantage of that situation.

'Chelsea have got unlimited resources and they've got a lot of qualities – they played some great stuff, but so did we. We gave them a real fight. We competed against them for 95 minutes and I'm very proud of all the players.'

Wassall singled out Bennett for special praise: 'He was almost unplayable tonight for 20 minutes early in that second half. He scored the goal and caused havoc. It's all about progression into the first team and we're delighted with his performance tonight.'

Roberto Mancini demands victory at Aston Villa

Defeat at Villa would be no laughing matter for Man City, warns Mancini

By
Andy Hampson, Press Association

PUBLISHED:

10:52 GMT, 2 March 2013

|

UPDATED:

12:02 GMT, 2 March 2013

Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini has told his players their impressive win over Chelsea counts for nothing if they fail to beat struggling Aston Villa on Monday.

The champions have responded well since a dismal defeat at Southampton all but ended their hopes of retaining their Barclays Premier League crown last month.

City thrashed Leeds in the FA Cup and deservedly overcame then third-placed Chelsea 2-0 but leaders Manchester United remain in complete control of title race.

Is that you, Joe Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart sports some fancy dress for Comic Relief

Is that you, Joe Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart sports some fancy dress for Comic Relief

In on it: Midfielder Gareth Barry strikes a pose for the cameras

In on it: Midfielder Gareth Barry strikes a pose for the cameras

Support: Jack Rodwell and his team-mates are promoting Red Nose Day by sporting Eighties wigs

Support: Jack Rodwell and his team-mates are promoting Red Nose Day by sporting Eighties wigs

Nice do: Right back Pablo Zabaleta shows off his three noses and a suspect haircut

Nice do: Right back Pablo Zabaleta shows off his three noses and a suspect haircut

Mancini's men next travel to struggling Villa knowing any they cannot afford to let the intensity drop.
The Italian said: 'For us, it will be important. If we don't beat Aston Villa, it is like we didn't do anything against Chelsea.

'For this reason it is important to beat Aston Villa and afterwards continue to go.

'The season is not finished. It is impossible we can think it is finished now.

'There are 11 games to the finish. It is our job to play all the games 100 per cent and try to win always.'

City and Mancini, of course, have experience of chasing apparent lost causes having memorably fought back to pip United to the title on goal difference last season.

Mancini said: 'I was not strong in mathematics in school, but with 11 games to play – 33 points – everything is possible.

'Last time we won the title from six games to go, eight points (behind). I think everything is possible.'

City captain Vincent Kompany seems unlikely to return to action at Villa Park.

The Belgium defender has missed five games since suffering a calf injury in the FA Cup fourth-round win at Stoke just over a month ago.

It had been hoped the 26-year-old could return against Chelsea but the problem has lasted longer than expected and Kompany has also had trouble in his opposite calf.

Mancini has not yet ruled him out for Monday but the cup quarter-final against Barnsley next week is now looking a more realistic comeback target.

One giant leap: Hart puts in some work in training earlier this week

One giant leap: Hart puts in some work in training earlier this week

Weight of expectation: Joleon Lescott powers through his session at the Carrington gym

Weight of expectation: Joleon Lescott powers through his session at the Carrington gym

Mancini said: 'Vinny is getting better in this moment.

'We hope we can recover him for the next game. We will try for Aston Villa for Monday but it is difficult because he did not train with the team, he trained with the physio.

'We hope for the FA Cup. The calf is a difficult injury because you think you are okay and then you have a problem. The calf is a strange injury.'

Former Villa midfielder Gareth Barry should be fit to face his old team after two games out with an ankle injury.

Mancini said: 'He has trained with the team the last two days and I think he will be ready.'

Meanwhile, the City players pitched in to do their bit for Comic Relief. Joe Hart, Pablo Zabaleta, Jack Rodwell and Barry donned suspect Eighties haircuts and put on red noses to show their support for the cause.

Ben Foster ends England exile

Foster ends England exile by giving Hodgson green light to pick him again

By
Neil Moxley

PUBLISHED:

11:42 GMT, 28 February 2013

|

UPDATED:

16:06 GMT, 28 February 2013

Ben Foster has ended his England exile and decided to return to the national team squad at the request of England manager Roy Hodgson.

The West Brom goalkeeper has told Hodgson that he is ready to come back for the World Cup qualifiers against San Marino and Montenegro.

Former Albion boss Hodgson is struggling to find top-class competition for Joe Hart and will be boosted by the news that a man he knows well from the year they spent together at The Hawthorns last season is ready to play international football again.

On the cards Foster is in line for an England return against San Marino and Montenegro, having left the national set-up (below) in 2011

On the cards Foster is in line for an England return against San Marino and Montenegro, having left the national set-up (below) in 2011

Foster

For the last England game, the 2-1 friendly win over Brazil, Hodgson only named two goalkeepers in his squad, Hart and Jack Butland.

Foster announced towards the end of the 2010-11 campaign, when he was still at Birmingham City, that he was withdrawing from the international scene because of injury concerns.

His last game was a 2-1 defeat by France in November 2010.

Two's too few: England only named goalkeepers Joe Hart and Jack Butland (below) in their squad against Italy

Two's too few: England only named goalkeepers Joe Hart and Jack Butland (below) in their squad against Italy

Jack Butland against Italy

The former Manchester United keeper suffers from groin problems and earlier this season underwent surgery to cure the nagging issue.

However, since returning he has been in superb form, saving a penalty from Steven Gerrard during West Brom's 2-0 victory over Liverpool.

He has been a massive factor in Albion's push for a Europa League spot.

Old guard: Hodgson managed Foster during his spell at The Hawthorns

Old guard: Hodgson managed Foster during his spell at The Hawthorns

Sir Alex Ferguson hails David de Gea after Champions League draw against Real Madrid

The Real Hero! Fergie hails saviour De Gea as Welbeck gives United edge

By
Neil Ashton

PUBLISHED:

02:21 GMT, 14 February 2013

|

UPDATED:

09:23 GMT, 14 February 2013

Sir Alex Ferguson hailed David de Gea's Champions League heroics in the Bernabeu.

The under-fire Spanish goalkeeper was outstanding as Manchester United, who took the lead through Danny Welbeck, escaped with a draw after Cristiano Ronaldo’s stunning equaliser.

Ferguson said: ‘De Gea has been improving all season and he even got a touch on the shot from Coentrao in the first half when he put it on to the post.

Anything will do: David de Gea flung himself at everything to keep Real Madrid largely at bay

Anything will do: David de Gea flung himself at everything to keep Real Madrid largely at bay

Anything will do: David de Gea flung himself at everything to keep Real Madrid largely at bay

Anything will do: David de Gea flung himself at everything to keep Real Madrid largely at bay

'He was excellent and made three or
four top saves. He was coming back to Madrid after his career with
Atletico, so to perform like that against Real …’

Real had 28 attempts on De Gea’s goal
in the first leg of this last-16 tie but they were unable to convert
their chances on a frustrating night for Jose Mourinho’s team.

Ferguson added: ‘The tie is 50-50 and
I would say whoever scores first in three weeks’ time will have a good
chance of going through. We made chances and hopefully we won’t regret
missing them.

‘Real are a fantastic
counter-attacking team, but we will be more positive in terms of
selection. We have goals in our team, don’t forget that.’

Re-United: Sir Alex Ferguson embraces his former protegee at the final whistle

Re-United: Sir Alex Ferguson embraces his former protegee at the final whistle

United took the lead when Welbeck scored only his second goal of the season before Ronaldo hit back with a stunning header.

Ferguson added: ‘It reminded me of
his goal against Roma in the quarter-final in 2009 because that also had
unbelievable spring and power.

‘No player can do that – not even
Messi. Cristiano’s a special talent and it’s nice that he came into the
dressing-room after the game to see his old team-mates.’

Ronaldo, who has scored seven times
in the Champions League this season, added: ‘I did not want to celebrate
the goal out of respect, as I played there for six years. I grew up
there. They welcomed me when I was a child and it’s very special to play
against them.’

On target: Danny Welbeck gives United something take back to Old Trafford

On target: Danny Welbeck gives United something take back to Old Trafford

He will see them again on March 5 when United host Real in the second leg at Old Trafford.

Mourinho, who hugged United legend
Paddy Crerand at the end of the post-match press conference, said: ‘They
came here to defend and not to concede goals or space. They didn’t play
to win.

'We have players of great potential
and we can score goals. I don’t feel pressure. At Old Trafford we have
the perfect conditions to win.’

VIDEO He was excellent, some top saves. Fergie hails De Gea

Play Video

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