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Newcastle to back Howe in January transfer window

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Newcastle co-owner Amanda Staveley says the struggling Premier League club will back new boss Eddie Howe in the January transfer window as they battle to avoid relegation.

Howe was hired earlier this week as Newcastle’s wealthy new Saudi owners seek to transform their club after years in the wilderness.

Staveley, the public face of the Saudi-led ownership, believes new signings in January will be vital to Newcastle’s hopes of climbing away from the relegation zone.

They are currently second bottom after failing to win any of their first 11 league matches.

“We are preparing for the January transfer window,” Staveley told NUFC TV on Thursday.

“It’s not a window we would ordinarily want to invest in, because you probably don’t get the right deals, but that’s something that is important at the moment.”

Staveley dismissed suggestions the consortium would have been better waiting until later in the season before deciding to make its move, due to Newcastle’s perilous position.

Howe’s success at Bournemouth, whom he led from the fourth tier into the top-flight in two spells at the club, convinced them that the 43-year-old was the right man for the job after other coaches had turned Newcastle down.

Q&A with Newcastle manager Eddie Howe

Read Also: WCQ: Kane feeling the strain after England’s Euro heartache

“It would have been an easy decision for us to not buy the club just yet, wait until probably post-Christmas and post the January window, see where the club sat in the league, and then make the acquisition,” she said.

“That would have been the safe investment bet, but we didn’t do that… we took a risk because we knew the club was sitting in 19th position at the time. Eddie took that risk with us knowing there is always a chance of relegation. I think he’s going to just do the most incredible job.”

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Ligue 1: Marseille stunned by in-form Brest

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Marseille missed the chance to cement their grip on second place in the Ligue 1 table on Saturday as Jorge Sampaoli’s side threw away the lead to lose 2-1 at home to a Brest team on a record winning run.

Brazilian international Gerson gave Marseille a first-half lead at the Velodrome with his second goal in as many games after playing a one-two with captain Dimitri Payet.

However, Brest drew level early in the second half as Romain Faivre scored a penalty awarded for a handball by Boubacar Kamara.

Franck Honorat then crashed a superb winner in off the underside of the crossbar as the side from Brittany made it six successive league wins, the best run in their history in the top flight.

Read Also: EPL: Masuaku fluke helps West Ham beat Chelsea in London derby

They are up to sixth, while Marseille remain second, 12 points behind leaders Paris Saint-Germain who are in action later on Saturday at Lens.

Kylian Mbappe could be rested for a PSG side already missing the injured Neymar, but Lionel Messi — who won the Ballon d’Or for the seventh time on Monday — should start.

Marseille could drop down the table depending on results elsewhere this weekend, with Rennes and Nice both sitting within two points of the former Champions League winners.

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Bernardo stars again as Man City move to top of EPL with Watford win

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Bernardo Silva continued his scintillating form as Manchester City surged to the top of the Premier League table with a comfortable 3-1 victory at struggling Watford.

Raheem Sterling opened the scoring with a simple header on four minutes as the visitors threatened to run riot against the home side’s porous defence.

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Jack Grealish had several chances to double the advantage before the in-form Bernardo fizzed in a rebound from a narrow angle just past the half hour.

 

City continued to pose all of the questions following the restart and Bernardo grabbed his seventh goal of the season with a wonderful curler that flew into the top corner on 63 minutes.

For long spells it looked like a case of how many for the visitors but Watford did give the home support some cheer when substitute Cucho Hernandez acrobatically volleyed in a rebound 16 minutes from time.

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The result means City take advantage of former leaders Chelsea’s defeat at West Ham earlier in the day to move a point clear of second-placed Liverpool at the summit. Watford remain three points above the drop zone in 17th spot.

Pep Guardiola’s men will now turn their focus to Tuesday’s Champions League clash at RB Leipzig having already guaranteed top spot in Group A before hosting Wolves in the Premier League on Saturday. Watford travel to Brentford on Friday evening.

 

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EPL: Origi nets in stoppage time as Liverpool take advantage of Chelsea slip

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