Team

Preview: Kitchee vs. Manchester City – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Wednesday’s pre-season clash between Kitchee and Manchester City, including team news and predicted lineups. Manchester City will continue their preparations for the 2019-20 campaign with a pre-season friendly against Hong Kong outfit Kitchee on Wednesday. City lost on penalties to Wolverhampton Wanderers in the final of the Premier League Asia Trophy on Saturday and will be looking to return to winning ways at the Hong Kong Stadium. Kitchee © Reuters Kitchee will be looking to give a good account of themselves when they welcome the Premier League champions for Wednesday’s pre-season friendly. Not too much will be expected from Blaz Sliskovic‘s side, but they have previous when it comes to taking on English opposition. Indeed, Tottenham Hotspur, Manch...

Preview: Real Madrid vs. Arsenal – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews the International Champions Cup clash between Real Madrid and Arsenal, including team news and predicted lineups. Real Madrid will be looking to bounce back from their 3-1 loss to Bayern Munich last time out when they face Arsenal in the International Champions Cup on Tuesday night. Madrid opened their preparations for the 2019-20 campaign with a defeat to the German champions, but Arsenal have overcome Colorado Rapids, Bayern and Fiorentina in their three friendly games this summer. Real Madrid © Reuters There is no question that it is performances and fitness rather than results that matter most at this stage of pre-season, and Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane will have been encouraged by aspects of his team’s display against Bayern on Saturday night despite a disap...

Preview: Sevilla vs. Liverpool – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole provides team news, predicted lineups and a full preview of Sunday’s pre-season friendly between Sevilla and Liverpool. Liverpool continue their preparations for the new campaign on Sunday night when they take on Sevilla in an International Champions Cup fixture. The Spanish outfit head into the game in Boston having registered wins over Reading and FC Dallas over the past week. Sevilla © Reuters A sixth-placed finish in La Liga last season means that new boss Julen Lopetegui has it all to do in his first year in charge at Sevilla, although there are already signs that the Spaniard could prove to be an astute appointment. Over half-a-dozen first-team additions have already been made as Lopetegui looks to both the present and future at a time when a number of high-profile ...

Harry Paton reveals extra summer training in bid to break into first team

Paton is looking to build on his solid start for the Staggies this season. Harry Paton hopes his summer family training regime can help his push for a first-team place at Ross County. The 21-year-old impressed in County’s 4-0 Betfred Cup win at Brechin on Tuesday after forcing his way into the starting line-up. The midfielder hopes the extra effort of spending most of his summer holiday training with his two younger brothers at their family home in Canada can give him a head start this season. The former Fulham and Hearts trainee told PA: “I took a week or two off just to completely rest but I went right back into it and was training after that. “I have two brothers back home and we were all pushing each other and working hard over the summer to be fit for the new season....

Preview: Manchester United vs. Inter Milan – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole provides a full preview of Manchester United’s pre-season clash with Inter Milan, including team news and predicted lineups. Manchester United will continue their preparations for the 2019-20 campaign with a clash against Inter Milan in the International Champions Cup on Saturday. United have beaten Perth Glory and Leeds United in their two pre-season matches thus far, while Inter recorded a 2-1 win over Lugano in their first friendly of the summer last weekend. Manchester United © Reuters It is difficult to read too much into pre-season results, but there is no question that United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will have been pleased with what he has seen from his team in their two matches this summer. Pre-season started with a 2-0 win over Perth Glory last weekend, before t...

Ronan Hughes: ‘Stirling loan has prepared me for Hamilton first team’

The 20-year-old spent the second half of last season at the Ladbrokes League Two club. Ronan Hughes admits a loan spell at Stirling was an eye-opener which has prepared him to step up to the Hamilton first team. The 20-year-old spent the second half of last season at the Ladbrokes League Two club and started this campaign in Brian Rice’s starting line-up for Saturday’s Betfred Cup opener against Queen’s Park. Hughes, whose team face Clyde on Wednesday, said of his loan spell: “It has helped me a lot, I have matured a lot and understand the game a lot more, thanks to everyone at Stirling. “It’s different to playing for the reserves, I needed to play men’s football. “It’s a lot more physical. Players will leave a wee kick on you to let yo...

Preview: Arsenal vs. Bayern Munich – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole provides team news, predicted lineups and a full preview of Thursday’s pre-season friendly between Arsenal and Bayern Munich. Arsenal take on Bayern Munich in the International Champions Cup on Thursday on the back of a 3-0 victory over Colorado Rapids. The German outfit will be playing their first game of pre-season having recently made the trip to Los Angeles. Arsenal © Reuters Unai Emery is having to contend with a number of issues away from the pitch right now as a result of a limited transfer budget and the unhappiness of club captain Laurent Koscielny. That probably left the Spaniard feeling relieved when his side returned to the pitch on Tuesday to register a convincing win over their opponents from the MLS. Emery took the opportunity to field a young team from kic...

Preview: Manchester City vs. West Ham United – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews the pre-season clash between Manchester City and West Ham United, including team news and predicted lineups. Manchester City will kick off their preparations for the 2019-20 campaign with a clash against fellow English side West Ham United in the Premier League Asia Trophy on Wednesday. West Ham opened their pre-season with a 3-2 win against Rheindorf Altach on Thursday. However, Wednesday’s clash will represent City’s first fixture since the FA Cup final almost two months ago. Manchester City © Reuters City’s preparations for Wednesday’s match have been far from ideal when considering that the Premier League champions saw their plane grounded for two consecutive days as they attempted to fly to China. Indeed, their game against West Ham was see...

Preview: Tunisia vs. Nigeria – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Wednesday’s Africa Cup of Nations third-place playoff between Tunisia and Nigeria, including predictions, team news and head-to-head records. The circumstances of Nigeria and Tunisia‘s late semi-final defeats in this year’s Africa Cup of Nations could be telling when the two tangle for one last hurrah at the tournament. Games for third place rarely seem a thrill for the teams involved, although younger squad members on both sides will be hoping for a chance to shine in Cairo, while their more match-worn teammates will presumably wish they were on the next flight home. On the face of it, Tunisia are 20 places above Nigeria in the FIFA world rankings, sitting 25th, and had a slightly less agonising form of AFCON heartbreak in that they did not lose to t...

Preview: Colorado Rapids vs. Arsenal – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole looks ahead to Arsenal’s opening pre-season friendly against Colorado Rapids, including predictions, teams news and a full match preview. Arsenal will begin their pre-season tour of the United States in the early hours of Tuesday morning when they face the Stan Kroenke-owned Colorado Rapids at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. The Gunners are gearing up for the second season under Unai Emery, with Tuesday’s match kicking off a four-stop tour in the States. Colorado Rapids © Reuters Whereas Arsenal are just beginning their preparations for a new campaign, Tuesday’s match comes in the middle of Colorado Rapids’ MLS season. It is a season which has not gone particularly well for Conor Casey‘s side so far, though, with the Rapids sitting 11th in the We...

Preview: Bradford City vs. Liverpool – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews the pre-season friendly between Bradford City and Liverpool at Valley Parade, including team news and predicted lineups. Liverpool‘s pre-season campaign continues with a friendly against League Two side Bradford City at Valley Parade on Sunday afternoon. The Reds made a good start to their summer programme with a 6-0 win over Tranmere Rovers and will be looking to build on that emphatic victory in West Yorkshire this weekend. Bradford City © Reuters A dismal 2018-19 campaign saw Bradford slip into the fourth tier of English football after a six-season stay in League One. The Bantams’ relegation was confirmed with a 2-0 loss to Coventry City on April 19 – their seventh straight defeat. Their form did improve in the final few games of the campaign as th...

Preview: Manchester United vs. Perth Glory – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews the pre-season friendly between Manchester United and Perth Glory in Australia, including team news and predicted lineups. Manchester United take on Perth Glory at the Optus Stadium on Saturday afternoon in the first of their pre-season friendlies. The Red Devils endured a difficult 2018-19 campaign and will be hoping for far better this time around, starting with a positive result in Australia this weekend. Manchester United © Reuters Picking up from where they left off last season, Man United already seem to be the media’s crisis club of choice. Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku have both travelled with the squad for their tour Down Under, despite both having admitted that they would like to play their football away from Old Trafford next season. Contract negotiatio...

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