Tag Archives: heroics

Image article-2237906-1632217A000005DC-41_634x346.jpg

Felipe Melo saves penalty for Galatasaray

Beyond the call of duty! Brazil MIDFIELDER Melo steps up and saves penalty to secure victory for Galatasaray after keeper sees red

|

UPDATED:

20:28 GMT, 24 November 2012

'Are you sure you know what you’re doing, mate' Could be the question posed to Galatasaray midfielder Felipe Melo as he proceeded to put on goalkeeping gloves in the 90th minute.

His side were 1-0 up when Fernando Muslera was given his marching orders after giving away a penalty to opponents Elazigspor, handing them the opportunity to snatch a draw at the death.

Fearful the Turkish side would give up the two points, Melo pulled on the departing keeper’s jersey and gloves.

Scroll down for video

What a stop: Felipe Melo saved a penalty to keep Galatasaray's noses in front

What a stop: Felipe Melo saved a penalty to keep Galatasaray's noses in front

As Goksu Turkdogan took his run up, the 29-year-old Brazil midfielder shuffled tentatively to his left before changing his mind and diving to the right.

The outfield player parried the penalty – rather unconventionally – away from goal, sparing his goalkeeper’s blushes and sealing victory for his team in the process.

After Melo palmed Turkdogan’s shot to safety, rather than getting to his feet, he crawled along the floor, pulling a silly face to celebrate as his team-mates rushed to congratulate him.

Who could blame him for this strange display though After all, he had just gone beyond the call of duty and saved a penalty kick – despite being a defensive midfielder.

Unorthodox: Melo crawled along the floor after keeping the penalty out

Unorthodox: Melo crawled along the floor after keeping the penalty out

After stepping up and pulling off an incredible act of heroics for his side, Melo might have replied: 'Did you just see that Of course I know what I’m doing!'

Melo's team's 1-0 win over Elazigspor was their second in succession. Galatasaray beat the visiting Manchester United in Istanbul in the Champions League in midweek.

VIDEO: WATCH FELIPE MELO'S PENALTY SAVE

Image article-0-1622340A000005DC-795_634x428.jpg

Jonathan Davies slams Wales fans over Twitter abuse

Torment by Twitter: Davies accuses fans of being quick to forget Wales' good times

|

UPDATED:

23:13 GMT, 21 November 2012

Jonathan Davies has broken ranks and expressed his anger with a fickle Welsh public who are so quick to slag off the national team and bully his team-mates.

Wales face world champions New Zealand on Saturday off the back of five straight Test defeats, and instead of feeling the nation is behind the team the players have been booed at the final whistle in the first two Tests of this autumn and personally targeted on twitter.

Sam Waburton’s sister quit the social media site on the weekend as she was so upset with the anger directed at players she knows personally and Davies has clearly had enough of the abuse aimed at certain members of his side.

Talking tactics: Jonathan Davies chats with coach Robert Howley during a training session at the Vale Resort

Talking tactics: Jonathan Davies chats with coach Robert Howley during a training session at the Vale Resort

‘The national team is the pride of the nation, but you should not immediately slag it off,’ he said.

‘We have done some pretty good things in the last 12 months and some people have forgotten it quite quickly.

‘I don’t look at the criticism on
Twitter, I don’t care what those people say, they are welcome to their
opinion, but it is like bullying sometimes, I have heard it is pretty
bad.

‘All I can say to the fans is get
behind the team, support the team. We are doing everything we can to
make Wales a proud nation like it has been over last 12 months.’

Focus: Rhys Priestland has come in for criticism

Focus: Rhys Priestland has come in for criticism

When this fixture sold out before
Christmas last year, supporters were jubilant off the back of Wales’
heroics at the World Cup in New Zealand and genuinely believed they had a
shot at beating the All Blacks for the first time since 1953.

Wales went on to win the Six Nations
Grand Slam but since Warren Gatland hung up his whistle to begin
preparations for the Lions tour the form of the side has been in
free-fall.

Davies has recovered from a groin
injury to return to the midfield alongside his Grand Slam winning centre
partner Jamie Roberts. The pair will have their work cut out against
likely opponents Ma’a Nonu and Conrad Smith.

But the one player who has been
singled out for most criticism on twitter is fly-half Rhys Priestland,
playmaker at the Scarlets and Davies’ regional team-mate and friend.

Priestland’s form has admittedly
wavered since last year’s World Cup and subsequent Grand Slam, but the
coaches have retained their faith that he is the No 10 to take the team
to the 2015 tournament. With Leigh Halfpenny taking on kicking duties,
Priestland is free to simply focus on orchestrating play and getting the
most out of Wales giant back line – at least that is the theory.

‘When Rhys plays well, Wales play
well,’ Davies said. ‘He has come in for some stick and I don’t know if
it is right or wrong but the public need to get behind him.

‘Twelve months ago people were saying
Wales could not play without him, and it is those same people slagging
him off and it is unfair, you get behind your team and support your
team. I have faith in Rhys and so does everyone else in the team.

Sister act: A member of Sam Warburton's family has quit Twitter over abuse directed at Wales players

Sister act: A member of Sam Warburton's family has quit Twitter over abuse directed at Wales players

‘Rhys is a true professional, nothing
fazes him. He won’t care about people slagging him off, but I think it
is important for the nation to get behind the team and not shoot us down
because of two bad performances after we delivered a Grand Slam not so
long ago.’

Wales will certainly need a sell-out
stadium behind them when they face the All Blacks on Saturday. Davies
believes it genuinely makes a difference.

‘When the crowd get up for it in the
Millennium Stadium it’s great, the boys love it and we need to make sure
we give them something to cheer about on Saturday.

‘We want their support and the team are looking forward to the whole occasion.

‘It has been a bad couple of weeks for Welsh rugby we know that, but we are putting it right and there is no need to panic.

‘We need to realise we have not
suddenly turned into bad players, we have just not been making the right
decisions. We are all very capable internationals and we need to make
sure we get our big runners into the game early on and impose
ourselves.’

Image article-2235079-0F5FC0BC00000578-385_634x406.jpg

India beat England by nine wickets, first Test, Ahmedabad

Cook and Prior heroics not enough as India crush England by nine wickets in first Test

|

UPDATED:

07:41 GMT, 19 November 2012

Alastair Cook's heroic resistance ended in empty anti-climax as England lost the first Test to India by nine wickets at the Sardar Patel Stadium.

The chances of a brave rearguard being commuted into a famous stalemate in this first match of four centred on Cook (176) and Matt Prior (91) on the final day.

But they could augment their combined defiance by only 16 more runs this morning – and with their stand of 157 broken, England lost their last five wickets for only 50 in a lunchtime 406 all out.

Long stand: Cook was in the middle for nine hours, but couldn't save his team from defeat

Long stand: Cook was in the middle for nine hours, but couldn't save his team from defeat

India v England

Click here for full scorecard

India's resulting target of 77 was
then treated with near contempt by Virender Sehwag and Cheteshwar
Pujara, whose aggression put paid to any fanciful notion that Graeme
Swann's off-spin might yet make life difficult on a worn pitch.

Sehwag was well caught by Kevin Pietersen on the long-on boundary off Swann, with only 20 more runs required.

But India's unbeaten first-innings
double-centurion Pujara – opening in place of the absent Gautam Gambhir –
made no mistake and took his and Sehwag's shared match aggregate to
almost 400 runs to help finish the contest in only 15.3 overs. Cook and
Prior had given England hope where none previously existed, after
following on 330 runs behind two days ago.

But both were gone in the first hour, as Pragyan Ojha (four for 120) took his match haul to nine wickets.

Easy does it: Sehwag helped knock-off the required runs to secure victory in the first Test

Easy does it: Sehwag helped knock-off the required runs to secure victory in the first Test

India v England – Pictures

We are unable to carry live pictures from the First Test in Ahmedabad due to a dispute between the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and international news organisations.

The BCCI has refused access to Test venues to established picture agencies Getty Images and Action Images and other Indian photographic agencies.

MailOnline consider this action to be a strike against press freedom and supports the action to boycott BCCI imagery.

The hugely admirable sixth-wicket
stand ended, after exactly four hours, when Prior laid back to hit a
short ball but was undone by a lack of pace and looped a simple catch
back to Ojha.

He had occupied 225 balls and given
Cook much-deserved and lasting support, but still England needed more to
prevent India completing a victory which most thought surely theirs
ever since the tourists were bowled out for just 191 on Saturday
afternoon.

Even Cook could not quite provide it. It was fitting too that it should be Ojha who finally got him.

After almost nine and a half hours,
India found a way past the England captain when he went fatally back to
his 374th ball – which turned and kept low to beat his hurried defence
and bowl him off his pad.

Futile effort: Prior was caught in the 90s

Futile effort: Prior was caught in the 90s

In a spin: Ojha took nine wickets in the match

In a spin: Ojha took nine wickets in the match

Stuart Broad poked back the second caught-and-bowled of the day, also off the back foot, to Umesh Yadav (three for 70).

Tim Bresnan and Swann ensured England were not quite done with yet, keeping India at bay for 35 more minutes.

But there was double and terminal disappointment for the tourists just before lunch.

First, Swann aimed a reverse-sweep at R
Ashwin – who had replaced Ojha – and was bowled middle-stump; then
Bresnan was last out, caught at cover off Zaheer Khan.

Swann's in particular was a
frustrating departure, just as he and Bresnan were beginning to revive
hope of at least setting India a three-figure target.

But the real damage, of course, was
done long ago – in a first innings Prior neatly summed up as a
“shocker”, and by a middle order who in their eight collective attempts
to make the substantial runs for which they were picked could mustered
only 68 between them.

England must come up with some
effective solutions to that problem – and several others, such as the
balance and personnel of their bowling attack – if they are to be
competitive in the second Test, starting in Mumbai on Friday.

Image article-2234468-16144737000005DC-804_634x394.jpg

Alan Pardew hoping to stop rot at Newcastle

Pardew hoping to stop rot at Newcastle after second home defeat in a row

|

UPDATED:

18:51 GMT, 17 November 2012

Alan Pardew was digging in for a scrap after seeing Newcastle slip to a second successive Barclays Premier League defeat at St James' Park.

Six days after succumbing tamely to West Ham, the Magpies were largely outplayed by Swansea before slipping to a 2-1 defeat which left them in the bottom half of the table, a far cry from last season's high-flying heroics.

With striker Papiss Cisse missing because of a wrangle with the Senegal Football Federation, Fabricio Coloccini suspended and Jonas Gutierrez and Yohan Cabaye injured, Newcastle were once again woefully short of inspiration as they failed to break down the well-organised victors until the death.

Oh dear: Demba Ba and Newcastle lost for a second time in a row at home

Oh dear: Demba Ba and Newcastle lost for a second time in a row at home

A philosophical Pardew said: 'You have to understand that in a managerial career at any football club, you are going to have some times when things don't go for you.

'Now we have had a week where it really has conspired against us in a lot of ways.

'Jonas was so close. We were deciding on whether to play him yesterday and we felt with the injury he had, it was too risky, so he was very, very close.

'Then we had Papiss taken away from us, we had Shola [Ameobi] only arriving yesterday afternoon [from international duty with Nigeria], so we had a lot of things that didn't work for us this week.'

Newcastle were undone by two second-half strikes, but they could have few complaints about the result as the visitors more than made a game of it.

Michu's well-placed 58th-minute header – his eighth goal of the season – from Pablo Hernandez's cross set the ball rolling, and they secured the points with three minutes remaining when keeper Tim Krul could only parry substitute Danny Graham's shot and Jonathan de Guzman rifled the rebound home from a tight angle.

Demba Ba, who had squandered a series of earlier opportunities, headed home from close range – also his eighth of the campaign – after substitute Sylvain Marveaux's shot had come back off the bar, but there was to be no late salvation.

Pardew said: 'Of course it's a concern, you don't want to lose a home game and we have lost two on the trot.

'But when you have a difficult period like we are having, you need your senior players in and around you and we haven't got them.'

Not quite: Ba's scissor kick went just wide of the post

Not quite: Ba's scissor kick went just wide of the post

Killer touch: Jonathan De Guzman (left) pounced to bag a goal for Swansea

Killer touch: Jonathan De Guzman (left) pounced to bag a goal for Swansea

Cisse's absence was particularly galling with the Magpies issuing a withering attack on both the Senegal federation and FIFA after it became apparent that Cisse would not play.

Pardew said: 'We kept getting promised that the decision was going to be overturned and that Senegal were going to let Papiss play, but we kept waiting and waiting and it was at about 1.40pm that we finally found out that wasn't going to happen.

'It did affect our preparation. Him missing today was a blow to us. We didn't feel we did anything wrong and he should have played.'

Swansea boss Michael Laudrup was understandably delighted by his team's performance, which saw them leapfrog their hosts into 10th place.

He said: 'It was the best away performance this season, including QPR and Liverpool.

Me too: Michu (left) also scored a well-placed header

Me too: Michu (left) also scored a well-placed header

'To come here and play Newcastle at a moment when we knew Newcastle really needed a win because they think they belong much higher than they are now after a home loss to West Ham a week ago, we knew it would be really difficult for us.

'But we put on a great performance. We can always discuss what is a big goal chance, but without my Swansea glasses, I think I can say we created at least eight or nine quite big chances, and that's very difficult to do as an away team against a team like Newcastle's.'

The Magpies will attempt to book their place in the knockout stage of the Europa League on Thursday night when Maritimo head for St James', but domestic matters are becoming a major concern amid a run of seven Barclays Premier League games and just one win.

Image article-2233409-160B79C6000005DC-469_634x317.jpg

Joe Hart scores overhead kick in Manchester City training

England keeper Joe Hart shows he can score an overhead kick just like Ibrahimovic

|

UPDATED:

15:58 GMT, 15 November 2012

Joe Hart may have been beaten FOUR times by Zlatan Ibrahimovic last night – but he has proved that he has some of the Swede's magic himself.

The England goalkeeper suffered a nightmare evening at the hands of Ibrahimovic as the hitman inspired the comeback for a 4-2 win in Stockholm.

Although he's more at home in his
gloves, Hart considers himself a decent player with the ball and
regularly gets stuck in at Manchester City training with the star outfield players.

Scroll down to watch Hart's heroics in training…
Flying solo: Joe Hart celebrated this superb overhead kick in training at Carrington

Flying solo: Joe Hart celebrated this superb overhead kick in training at Carrington

Flying solo: Joe Hart celebrated this superb overhead kick in training at Carrington

And he's even been filmed scoring an
overhead kick of his own – although it's not quite in the same bracket
at Ibrahimovic's effort.

Put
through his paces by the coaches at Carrington, Hart reacts to the ball
pinging off the crossbar by priming himself for an effort.

Twisting his body into position, the 25-year-old executes a brilliant overhead kick to beat his fellow City goalkeepers.

Night to forget: Joe Hart suffered at the hands of Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Night to forget: Joe Hart suffered at the hands of Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Wonder goal: Zlatan Ibrahimovic struck a stunning overhead kick

Wonder goal: Zlatan Ibrahimovic struck a stunning overhead kick

After the ball hits the back of the net, Hart turns to the cameras to celebrate with a grin like a boy scoring his first primary school goal.

City boss Mancini may be happy with his Safe Hands inbetween the posts. But judging by this evidence, he could do far worse than sticking him up front…

See the video here…

DM.has('rcpv1969978330001','BCVideo');

Image article-2231424-15F9E92E000005DC-772_634x415.jpg

England 48 France 4: Ryan Hall inspires rout in Autumn International Series final

England 48 France 4: Hall inspires eight-try rout in Autumn International Series final

|

UPDATED:

19:46 GMT, 11 November 2012

Winger Ryan Hall grabbed four tries as England cruised to an impressive, if predictable, victory over France in the final of the autumn international series at the Salford City Stadium.

England ran in eight tries and skipper Kevin Sinfield kicked all eight conversions as they took their points tally to 172 in their three matches to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Great Britain's last World Cup triumph.

They were leading 48-0 until winger Mathias Pala scored a last-minute consolation try for the French to provide a minor irritation for England coach Steve McNamara on his side's last full international before the 2013 World Cup next October.

Burning bright: Kevin Sinfield (centre) lifts the trophy after England won the Autumn International Series final

Burning bright: Kevin Sinfield (centre) lifts the trophy after England won the Autumn International Series final

That is when the real business will start for McNamara's men but they can look back on their autumn programme as a job well done.

McNamara will be especially delighted with the renewed half-back pairing of Sinfield and Rangi Chase, who won his place back at the expense of Richie Myler, while loose forward Sean O'Loughlin, who missed last week's game with a hamstring injury, also marked his return with an impressive showing.

Hall took the individual honours with his scoring heroics which took his tally to 13 tries in 15 appearances and took him past a former Leeds winger, Mark Calderwood, into joint second place in England's all-time list.

Touching down: Sam Tomkins scores England's second try at the Salford City Stadium

Touching down: Sam Tomkins scores England's second try at the Salford City Stadium

Full-back Sam Tomkins, who went ahead of previous record-holder Alf Ellaby a week ago, scored two more to take his total to 16 in 15 appearances and extend his lead at the top.

With six part-timers in their line-up, it was always going to be a case of damage limitation for the French following their 44-6 defeat in Hull eight days earlier.

The return from injury of Jamal Fakir was meant to bolster the injury-hit French but he lasted only 13 minutes and, although he was able to return, he looked well short of match fitness.

The kick-off was delayed because of the televised tennis but England quickly made up the time, Hall opening the scoring after eight minutes with his first try, which was the 150th of his career, courtesy of Tomkins' floated pass.

Le Crunch: England's Jamie Jones-Buchanan (right) offloads the ball to team-mate Rob Burrow

Le Crunch: England's Jamie Jones-Buchanan (right) offloads the ball to team-mate Rob Burrow

Sinfield and Chase were also involved in the move, as they were with England's other two first-half tries.

They combined to get Tomkins dummying his way over on 24 minutes and enabled O'Loughlin to work Hall over for his second thanks to another cut-out pass that exposed the defensive weaknesses in the French threequarter line.

France had their moments in the first half, particularly through the promptings of hard-working half-back William Barthau, but England's defence was superb.

No stopping him: England's Josh Charnley scores the fourth try of the game against France

No stopping him: England's Josh Charnley scores the fourth try of the game against France

The hosts lost veteran prop Adrian Morley within 90 seconds of the re-start, following a clash of heads with team-mate Gareth Ellis, but they found an extra gear in the second half.

Ellis' long pass enabled right winger Josh Charnley to go over for his fifth try in just two appearances while Chase's cut-out pass got Hall over for his hat-trick on 46 minutes.

Tomkins then provided another demonstration of his clinical finishing to claim his second try before working Hall over for his fourth in glorious fashion.

Inspiration: Winger Ryan Hall scores one of his four tries on the night for England

Inspiration: Winger Ryan Hall scores one of his four tries on the night for England

Chase began the length-of-the-field move by collecting Thomas Bosc's grubber kick on his own line and Tomkins supported him before supplying the final pass to the Leeds ace winger.

The monopoly of scoring by England's outside backs was finally ended when replacement hooker Rob Burrow took Ellis' smart offload to scoot 40 metres to the line and Sinfield maintained his 100 per cent record with his eighth goal, taking his points tally for the series to 56.

The French were well beaten but they at least had the final say when Pala pounced on a loose ball over the England tryline to prevent a whitewash.

Dream team: England captain Kevin Sinfield (left) and coach Steve McNamara hold the trophy

Dream team: England captain Kevin Sinfield (left) and coach Steve McNamara hold the trophy

Image article-2227603-15D7404E000005DC-631_634x452.jpg

Ian Poulter wins WGC HSBC Championship in China

Poulter comes from four behind to win HSBC Champions title by two shots

|

UPDATED:

10:57 GMT, 4 November 2012

Ian Poulter joked about taking two years off after his Ryder Cup heroics. Now he is glad he didn't.

Five weeks on from his unbeaten performance in the victory over the Americans, the 36-year-old today joined Darren Clarke as the only Europeans to win two World Golf Championship titles.

Poulter trailed by nine shots halfway through the HSBC Champions at Mission Hills in China, but two closing rounds of 65 gave him a two-stroke triumph over Open champion Ernie Els and Americans Phil Mickelson, Jason Dufner and Scott Piercy.

Winning in style: Ian Poulter came from four shots down to win the HSBC Champions title

Winning in style: Ian Poulter came from four shots down to win the HSBC Champions title

Sealed with a kiss: Poulter won the title for the second time in his career

Sealed with a kiss: Poulter won the title for the second time in his career

'It's so nice to get my hands on another trophy,' said Poulter, whose last individual success was the Australian Masters last December.

HSBC Champions leaderboard

Click here to see the full leaderboard

'I've been in good form for a while and knew if I did the right things and stayed patient I would be right there. It's been an amazing six weeks.'

What he could not have expected, however, was for both overnight leaders Lee Westwood and Louis Oosthuizen to finish so poorly.

After a third round 61 had brought him level Westwood went three clear early on, but double-bogeyed the short fifth and had three back nine bogeys.

Well done: Poulter is congratulated by Ernie Els

Well done: Poulter is congratulated by Ernie Els

Falling behind: Lee Westwood was the joint leader overnight but could not hold on in the final round

Falling behind: Lee Westwood was the joint leader overnight but could not hold on in the final round

That makes it a total of 100 majors and world championships in his career and the 39-year-old has yet to win one.

Oosthuizen, five clear of the field after 36 holes, also shot only a level par 72 on the low-scoring lay-out and so they dropped back into a tie for sixth place.

Poulter's performance certainly put a smile back on his face after he had let off steam on Twitter on Saturday night about Arsenal's performance at Manchester United.

'Simply not good enough,' he told his 1.3million followers. 'This is not an Arsenal side that can compete. But they are making a profit. I guess someone is happy.

'Bored of watching this s***. Not in the same league. Won't finish top six.'

Chip for glory: Poulter hits a shot on the 17th fairway

Chip for glory: Poulter hits a shot on the 17th fairway

Driving to success: Poulter came out on top in China

Driving to success: Poulter came out on top in China

Poulter was in a tie for fourth with 18 holes to go on the course designed by Ryder Cup captain Jose

Maria Olazabal and still two back despite a front nine 32.

But while Westwood then bogeyed the 10th, 12th and long 15th – a chip from just short of the green rolled down a bank and he thinned his next attempt – his fellow Englishman kept his foot on the accelerator.

An 18-foot putt gave Poulter a fifth birdie of the day on the 10th, he two-putted from the fringe on the 568-yard next and at the 15th he was bunkered in two, but holed another 18-footer.

Following the dragon: Poulter and Els before the trophy presentation

Following the dragon: Poulter and Els before the trophy presentation

Mickelson, Els and defending champion Martin Kaymer had become his biggest dangers by then, but the German's chances went when he fell from joint second to ninth with a triple-bogey on the short 17th.

After finding sand off the tee Kaymer went over the green, then chipped back into the bunker he had just left.

Poulter's lead came down from three to one when Mickelson also birdied the 15th and he bogeyed the 17th, failing to get up and down from right of the green.

Chasing pack: Louis Oosthuizen came sixth

Chasing pack: Louis Oosthuizen came sixth

But the three-time Masters champion took four on the 17th himself, duffing a chip that did not even make the green.

Poulter's bunkered approach to the 460-yard last meant there was still work to be done, but after playing partner Els had just failed with a 45-foot birdie attempt he holed from nine feet for a 21 under par total.

That left Mickelson having to hole his second shot to force a play-off, but he could only par and so with a 68 he had to share the runner-up spot with Els (67), Dufner (64) and Piercy (65).

Poulter was, of course, the happiest man given the fact that world top two Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods both turned the event down. He is now back into the top 20

McIlroy was quickly on with congratulations to his Ryder Cup team-mate, who earned over 743,000 for his week's work.

In the pack: US golfer Phil Mickelson was unable to mount a challenge for the title

In the pack: US golfer Phil Mickelson was unable to mount a challenge for the title

'Ballsy up and down at the last,' said the northern Irishman on Twitter, who preferred to watch his girlfriend Caroline Wozniacki play tennis in Bulgaria. 'Wouldn't expect anything less!'

Poulter added: 'It still doesn't give you the kind of same buzz you get playing the Ryder Cup. There's just not quite as much adrenaline in the body.

'I definitely think it is a part continuation of the Ryder Cup and I'm obviously riding that wave as much as I possibly can.

'After two days I felt I was probably too far back with the way Louis was playing, but anything is possible on this course once you get the putter warm and it is hard to close out tournaments sometimes.'

Talking a good game: Poulter show his delight while speaking to the Press after the tournament

Talking a good game: Poulter show his delight while speaking to the Press after the tournament

Two world championships are great, of course, but a major is the biggest dream.

'People keep asking all the time 'when, when, when'. I don't know when and I'm trying really hard – I'll do my best next year.'

With Peter Hanson and Justin Rose only sharing 24th place, McIlroy holds a massive lead of more than 600,000 in the European Tour money list race with only three weeks left – and he is playing all of them.

Mickelson is also at next week's Singapore Open and he said: 'I'll see if I can improve one spot there.
'It was good for me to come back after having not played since the Ryder Cup and pick up where I left off.

'I knew I needed to make some birdies, but the pins were very tough to get close to.'

Els contented himself with a near-miss on his return from an ankle injury.

'It's sore, don't get me wrong, and it was a bit of a physical test for me, but a good week,' he stated.

'And I almost made him think there on 18!'

Bobby Moore? I"d rather be Daniel Passarella, says Fabricio Coloccini

Play like Bobby Moore Thanks but I'd rather be Passarella, admits Newcastle defender Coloccini

|

UPDATED:

09:34 GMT, 27 October 2012

Fabricio Coloccini has thanked Alan Pardew for his Bobby Moore tribute – but wishes it had been Daniel Passarella.

Newcastle boss Pardew hailed his captain after his heroics in last Sunday's Wear Tyne derby draw.

Top man: Newcastle defender Fabricio Coloccini

Top man: Newcastle defender Fabricio Coloccini

The Argentina international was forced off with cramp in the latter stages at the Stadium of Light last week but before his withdrawal, he led from the rear as ten-men Newcastle defended their early lead.

Pardew compared Coloccini's heroics to former West Ham and England captain Moore and the tribute was not lost on the central defender who is back to lead Newcastle out against West Bromwich Albion.

Coloccini said: 'I'm very proud that the manager compared me to Bobby Moore. Bobby Moore is an important man in England so for me it is very good to hear the manager say that.

Anderson of Manchester United holds off a challenge from Fabricio Coloccini of Newcastle United

'I have to say thank you to the
manager for that compliment. He was one of the best players ever to play
for the national team in England. But of course, it would have been
nice for him to say Daniel Passarella!

'Of course I knew all about Bobby Moore. He is very famous in
Argentina, he is famous all over the world because he is one of the best
footballers of all time. For anyone to say I am like him makes me very
proud.

'I didn't have
just one hero when I was young. My biggest hero was my father Osvaldo,
because he played for 16 years in the first division in Argentina. In my
career, my aim has always been to get to the level that he was at.

'It is maybe easy for a player to get
to the first division, but it is not so easy to stay there for many
years like he did. I can say I'm better when I have played 16 years in
the top division like he did.'

Pardew will be without midfielder
Cheick Tiote following his red card at Sunderland and he has a number of
options to replace the Ivory Coast midfielder. He is also certain to
make changes after the latest Europa Cup triumph over Bruges on Thursday
night.

The Newcastle boss said his squad is coping well with the additional pressure of European competition and making his life easier.

He added: 'I have been picking sides which I think suit the game. Would we have won against Bruges with the team we played at Sunderland The energy we put out that day, I don't think we would have, if I am honest.

'You could argue I left nine players out from that team but if they had all played, I think we could have got beaten, I really do. The energy levels we had to produce were phenomenal and now we have got a quick turnaround so that on Sunday, we go again.

'It is pleasing for the club. We keep saying we have some good young players but they have to deliver. It is no good just doing it in training but lads like Shane Ferguson and Sammy Ameobi have produced it in games.'

Image article-0-159C3944000005DC-2_468x475.jpg

Play like Bobby Moore… I"d rather be Daniel Passarella, says Newcastle stopper Fabricio Coloccini

Play like Moore… I'd rather be Passarella, says Newcastle defender Coloccini

|

UPDATED:

23:02 GMT, 26 October 2012

Fabricio Coloccini has thanked Alan Pardew for his Bobby Moore tribute – but wishes it had been Daniel Passarella.

Newcastle boss Pardew hailed his captain after his heroics in last Sunday's Wear Tyne derby draw.

Top man: Newcastle defender Fabricio Coloccini

Top man: Newcastle defender Fabricio Coloccini

The Argentina international was forced off with cramp in the latter stages at the Stadium of Light last week but before his withdrawal, he led from the rear as ten-men Newcastle defended their early lead.

Pardew compared Coloccini's heroics to former West Ham and England captain Moore and the tribute was not lost on the central defender who is back to lead Newcastle out against West Bromwich Albion.

Coloccini said: 'I'm very proud that the manager compared me to Bobby Moore. Bobby Moore is an important man in England so for me it is very good to hear the manager say that.

Anderson of Manchester United holds off a challenge from Fabricio Coloccini of Newcastle United

'I have to say thank you to the
manager for that compliment. He was one of the best players ever to play
for the national team in England. But of course, it would have been
nice for him to say Daniel Passarella!

'Of course I knew all about Bobby Moore. He is very famous in
Argentina, he is famous all over the world because he is one of the best
footballers of all time. For anyone to say I am like him makes me very
proud.

'I didn't have
just one hero when I was young. My biggest hero was my father Osvaldo,
because he played for 16 years in the first division in Argentina. In my
career, my aim has always been to get to the level that he was at.

'It is maybe easy for a player to get
to the first division, but it is not so easy to stay there for many
years like he did. I can say I'm better when I have played 16 years in
the top division like he did.'

Pardew will be without midfielder
Cheick Tiote following his red card at Sunderland and he has a number of
options to replace the Ivory Coast midfielder. He is also certain to
make changes after the latest Europa Cup triumph over Bruges on Thursday
night.

The Newcastle boss said his squad is coping well with the additional pressure of European competition and making his life easier.

He added: 'I have been picking sides which I think suit the game. Would we have won against Bruges with the team we played at Sunderland The energy we put out that day, I don't think we would have, if I am honest.

'You could argue I left nine players out from that team but if they had all played, I think we could have got beaten, I really do. The energy levels we had to produce were phenomenal and now we have got a quick turnaround so that on Sunday, we go again.

'It is pleasing for the club. We keep saying we have some good young players but they have to deliver. It is no good just doing it in training but lads like Shane Ferguson and Sammy Ameobi have produced it in games.'

Image article-0-136AA761000005DC-164_468x328.jpg

Poland striker Robert Lewandowski vows to cut Joe Hart down to size

Hart attack! Poland striker Lewandowski vows to cut England keeper down to size

|

UPDATED:

20:30 GMT, 13 October 2012

Poland's warrior centre-forward Robert Lewandowski has promised to cut Joe Hart down to size on Tuesday night.

The Borussia Dortmund striker was frustrated by Hart's wonder show for Manchester City in their recent Champions League clash.

But Lewandowski, who carries much of
Poland's World Cup goal threat against England, played down Hart's
importance in that 1-1 draw at The Etihad and doubts whether the England
keeper will look so good at the end of this Group H qualifier.

Warning shot: Poland's Robert Lewandowski is confident

Warning shot: Poland's Robert Lewandowski is confident

The 24-year-old Poland superstar, who knows England will face a hostile atmosphere in the national stadium, warned last night: 'Hart had his day but no two games are ever the same. Just because he managed to do something in Manchester doesn't mean he will be able to repeat it in Warsaw.

'To be honest, we Dortmund players helped him a little bit in Manchester – and so did the post and the crossbar!

'Besides, we scored one goal so it's not like he is unbeatable or something. We can score past him. Maybe one goal like that will give Poland three points on Tuesday, and I hope to score it. We know England have had some defensive problems and we might just be able to surprise them. They're always going to be a difficult team but they didn't play so good at Euro 2012 and maybe we can hit form on the right day.'

Shot-stopper: Joe Hart in action against San Marino

Shot-stopper: Joe Hart in action against San Marino

Despite the quality which Poland possess in their side, Hart, 25, sees no reason why he cannot keep the prolific forward at bay once again and maintain England's unbeaten start to their qualifying section.

Recalling his heroics for City earlier this month, Hart said: 'I hope it won't be any different. Hopefully the game itself won't be as open as the last time I played against him. It is a big, important game for us and I'm looking forward to it.

'That's the beauty of international football – when you're playing away you're playing against the nation. But we will have that pocket of fans who we always take and are awesome. We will look to them and be inspired by them, which is great.

'I enjoy playing football, especially for my country in big games that really mean things. That is the beauty of qualifiers and tournaments – they really do mean a great deal to myself as well.'

Hart revealed Poland became a second home to the England players during the summer after they spent so much time there during the European Championship finals, basing themselves in Krakow and flying for matches in Ukrainian cities such as Donetsk and Kiev.

He is well aware of the passion and expectation that the Poland supporters generate for their own team, and the disappointment felt as the tournament co-hosts failed to emerge from a group in which they managed just two draws to be eliminated at the hands of the Czech Republic and Greece.

Young guns: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlayne (2nd left), Danny Welbeck (left) and Tom Cleverley (2nd right) celebrate

Young guns: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlayne (2nd left), Danny Welbeck (left) and Tom Cleverley (2nd right) celebrate

Hart said: 'We felt a lot of love from the Polish people. We felt obliged to support them, too. There is a lot of pressure on them. They were very unlucky in a tough group and I thought they did well but it wasn't meant to be.'

Despite manager Roy Hodgson bringing more youngsters into the England starting line-up, such as Danny Welbeck, Tom Cleverley and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Hart sees no reason why they cannot come away with a positive result and consolidate their place at the top of the group after Friday night's 5-0 Wembley walk-over against San Marino.

'It will be a new experience for some of our youngsters but players adapt and that is the beauty of young players now. They don't play with any fear. I am not exactly old but I was a young player once and you really look forward to games like this.'

Decision time: England boss Roy Hodgson

Decision time: England boss Roy Hodgson

Meanwhile, Lewandowski, who has won 47 caps scoring 15 goals, offered little encouragement to Sir Alex Ferguson after being linked with a January move to Manchester United in the wake of Fergie's visit to see him play at City.

'I'm playing in a serious league so he can watch me every week if he likes,' added the striker. 'But I have two years left on a valid contract with my club and I want this season to be as good as last season.'

Lewandowski scored 22 goals in 34 games for Dortmund last term, being named Bundesliga player of the season as the club earned their first league-cup double.

But he explained: 'I don't often score in the really big games so I'd love to score against England. Having said that, I often make an impact in big games with a pass or some movement to create space for others, so I'm pleased with my game.'