Live updates

Louis van Gaal says no public backing from the club needed

Louis van Gaal insists he has no problem with Manchester United's failure to back him publicly.

Speculation has been swirling around Van Gaal ever since United slipped out of the top four and exited the Champions League.

Unlike when David Moyes was under pressure, United have failed to intimate that Van Gaal has their backing.

Some have taken that as a sign that Van Gaal has lost the faith of the board and that they are considering replacing him with Jose Mourinho.

But Van Gaal says he does not mind that the club have not made a statement backing him.

"I am not agreeing with that," the Dutchman said when asked if he was disappointed about any lack of public backing from the club.

"Because I have said many times that not all the media, but a lot of media, is inventing stories and you don't have to answer on invented stories.

"I agree with this policy of the club."

A winless run of eight matches towards the end of the year left Van Gaal's position under scrutiny.

United's form has improved since the start of the year, however. The Red Devils have lost just once in 2016 and sit fourth in the form table.

Klopp: Liverpool owners do care about club and fans

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp believes the owners' U-turn on ticket prices proves they care about the fans and the club.

Reds fans walked out of the match against Sunderland at Anfield last weekend in the 77th minute in protest at what they saw as an unacceptable hike in ticket prices for next season, with the most expensive tickets in the new Main Stand costing £77.

The club's owners Fenway Sports Group responded on Wednesday by announcing that prices would be frozen for the next two years.

In an open letter principal owner John W Henry, Liverpool chairman Tom Werner and FSG president Mike Gordon expressed their concerns, saying they were "particularly troubled by the perception that we don't care about our supporters, that we are greedy".

Klopp believes their swift action shows that is not the case.

"I think in the world of football it is not too easy when you are the owner of a club to prove you are interested in the club," he said.

"I know it, I have been here four and a half months and I know the owners as people.

"They really care about the club and the interests of supporters and it was a clear reaction, a clear sign, and hopefully it is understood for what it is - proof of their real interest in this club and all the things around this club.

"I am really fine with it, it is a good thing."

Advertisement

Adam Johnson sacked by Sunderland

Adam Johnson Credit: PA

The former Manchester City player, Adam Johnson, has been sacked by Sunderland.

A statement on the club's website said: "In light of Adam Johnson's guilty pleas, the club has today terminated his contract with immediate effect.

"The club will make no further comment."

Earlier Adidas announced it had cancelled its boot deal with the Sunderland and England player.

The 28-year-old is due to stand trial at Bradford Crown Court on Friday on two counts of sexual activity with a child under 16, which he denies.

On Wednesday he pleaded guilty to one count of sexual activity with a girl under 16 and one count of child grooming at the court.

Johnson, who has earned 12 caps for England, began his career at Middlesbrough before moving to Manchester City in 2010.

He won the Premier League and FA Cup during his time at the Etihad Stadium, and moved to Sunderland for £10 million in 2012.

Louis van Gaal believes Man United can still win the title

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal Credit: Mike Egerton/EMPICS Sport

Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal feels his side can still win the title this season.

Van Gaal feels United played some "sparkling football" in the midweek win over Stoke and another victory at Chelsea on Sunday would reignite their campaign.

His comments come less than a fortnight after a dismal loss to Southampton that saw United and Van Gaal booed at Old Trafford and intensified speculation over his future.

But United got back to winning ways with victory at Derby in the FA Cup and then switched to a more attacking style to brush Stoke aside 3-0.

They are still 10 points behind Barclays Premier League leaders Leicester but Van Gaal claims the gap is not insurmountable.

He said: "I have the feeling that when we shall beat Chelsea - and that is not simple, that is very difficult, since Guus Hiddink has been there they don't lose any more - I think our competition, our league is starting again. That is very important.

"The competition is not yet finished, not for Manchester United or the other teams.

"We have the feeling, and that's because we are winning twice in a row and with sparkling football - with goals and clean sheets, against opponents who were in great form. Stoke City played Liverpool off the pitch in the Capital One Cup but they lost on penalties."

Manuel Pellegrini 'very worried' by Man City's upcoming fixtures

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini says he's 'very worried' about the club's upcoming run of fixtures.

The Chilean says he may have to field a youthful team against Chelsea in the 5th round of the FA Cup.

The fixture is scheduled for Sunday 21st February, one day before the squad fly out to Ukraine for their Champions League last 16 tie with Dynamo Kiev.

Advertisement

Pep Guardiola confident of juggling role at Bayern Munich with preparations for joining Man City

Coach Pep Guardiola from FC Bayern Munich during a training session in Munich, Germany Credit: Matthias Balk/DPA/PA Images

Pep Guardiola says he is "like a woman" and will be able to juggle his current role at Bayern Munich and preparations for life at Manchester City from the summer.

City confirmed Guardiola's appointment on a three-year contract on Monday, ending months of speculation over where his next destination would be with Chelsea and Manchester United also linked with him.

The Catalan, who said on Friday that the first contact with City came "in May or June", faces the challenge of ensuring his final season at Bayern ends with success on as many fronts as possible while ensuring he hits the ground running at the Etihad Stadium in the summer.

Asked how he would cope with that, he told reporters at a press conference: "I am like a woman, I can control both situations. I can think of both situations, so it's no problem for me."

The dream scenario of rounding off his Bayern reign with a Champions League, Bundesliga and DFB-Pokal treble is still achievable, and Guardiola insisted his focus is still very much on his work in Germany.

"I had my first talks with (Manchester City) in May or June," he said. "When I am in England, I will say more about it.

"If people don't trust me, then I can't change that. I know this is new for Bayern Munich - a coach has never left them before, it has always been them getting rid of their coach.

"But I will be focusing on the team until my final day here, giving my best to the very last minute."

Martinez pleased to hear Yarmolenko would choose Everton over Barcelona

Roberto Martinez says it's pleasing to hear one of European football's top talents say he'd rather join Everton than Barcelona.

Ukraine international Andriy Yarmolenko reportedly told Ukrainian news outlet Futbol: 'It is better to play at Everton.'

'Of course you can go to Barcelona, take a cool selfie with [Lionel] Messi, put the images on Instagram and get a million likes and be pleased with yourself.

'But I'm not one of those.

Biggest signing of transfer deadline day is Pep Guardiola agreeing to join Manchester City

Forget any moves for players, as the biggest story of transfer deadline day is Pep Guardiola's move to Manchester City.

Moments after City's current boss Manuel Pellegrini made the shock announcement at his pre match press conference that he'll be leaving, the club confirmed that the Spaniard will be the man replacing him in the summer.

Sports Correspondent Chris Hall has the story.

Load more updates