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Jack Butland in line for reunion with Roy Hodgson at Crystal Palace

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jack butland in line for reunion with roy hodgson at crystal palace

Former England goalkeeper Jack Butland is in line for a reunion with Roy Hodgson at Crystal Palace.

The Premier League club made contact with Butland’s current club Stoke on Thursday night and a deal is expected to be sorted out before the transfer window closes at 5pm.

Butland, 27, was once tipped as the future of English goalkeeping but has seen his career suffer through injury and loss of form over the last couple of years.

Ex-England goalkeeper Jack Butland is in line for a reunion with Roy Hodgson at Crystal Palace

Ex-England goalkeeper Jack Butland is in line for a reunion with Roy Hodgson at Crystal Palace

The 27-year-old shot-stopper won the first four of his nine England caps under Hodgson

The 27-year-old shot-stopper won the first four of his nine England caps under Hodgson

He won the first four of his nine England caps under Hodgson and the Palace boss believes the keeper is young enough to turn things around and provide competition for Vicente Guaita.

Butland was relegated with Stoke in 2018, the year he last played for England, and struggled last season in the Championship.

Stoke have been open to offers for him in this window and he hasn’t played this season.

Butland was relegated to Championship with Stoke in 2018, the year he last played for England

Butland was relegated to Championship with Stoke in 2018, the year he last played for England

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Meet Chelsea’s next keeper Karlo Ziger who sat next to Willy Caballero on bench for Krasnodar game – and is HALF his age

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meet chelseas next keeper karlo ziger who sat next to willy caballero on bench for krasnodar game and is half his age scaled

CHELSEA fans may have noticed a new face on the bench as Krasnodar were dispatched in the Champions League – Karlo Ziger.

The goalkeeper, 19, sat alongside Willy Caballero, 39, as the Blues won 4-0 in his first venture into a senior squad.

Karlo Ziger is making his way through the Chelsea ranks

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Karlo Ziger is making his way through the Chelsea ranksCredit: Getty Images – Getty
The keeper (left) with his team-mates on a stroll in Russia

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The keeper (left) with his team-mates on a stroll in RussiaCredit: Getty Images – Getty

Little is known about Croatia youth international Ziger’s arrival in England – which has become subject to reports on Chelsea’s transfer ban.

But since making his Under-18s debut in late 2017, he has gently risen up the ranks.

Described as a hard-working shot-stopper with top reflexes, the keeper was a regular at that level in 2018/19, featuring in Uefa Youth League penalty shootout wins over Dinamo Zagreb and Barcelona.



Future Blaugrana star Ansu Fati was one of the only players to get the better of Ziger in that run, which ended with a defeat to Porto in the final.

Midway through that season, he made his senior football debut in a one-game emergency loan spell at Sutton United.

The FA Trophy clash may have finished 3-0 to Spennymoor but Ziger took home his team’s man of the match award before heading back to Chelsea.

Last season saw the Zagreb-born player in and out of the Under-23s setup, behind Jamie Cumming, who joined Stevenage on loan in the summer to elevate Ziger yet further.

Therefore, 2020-21 could be a make or break season for the youngster ahead of his contract expiring in June.

TOB GRAPHIC KEPA 2

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Chelsea worked hard to bring Ziger over from Croatia and his signing became mired in the Football Leaks scandal surrounding the club last year.

The leaks alleged that the Premier League club paid £120,000 to the keeper’s family to sign him from NK Zagreb at the age of 12.

In March 2014, Croatian media reported on the transfer although Chelsea officially state that he joined over three years later.

It is claimed Karlo’s father, Darko, was registered as a club employee and the family’s accomodation paid for until the starlet turned 16.

Ziger has enjoyed success in the Uefa Youth League with a pair of penalty shootout triumphs

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Ziger has enjoyed success in the Uefa Youth League with a pair of penalty shootout triumphsCredit: Getty – Contributor
The Croat has spent a number of years in the Blues academy

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The Croat has spent a number of years in the Blues academyCredit: Getty Images – Getty

Furthermore, newspaper Nacional has claimed that the Blues paid over £800,000 for Ziger when agreeing an initial seven-year deal.

Fifa handed Chelsea a two-window transfer ban for 150 rule breaches involving 69 academy players in February 2019.

On appeal, the ban and fine handed out to the club were reduced and the exact players linked to the punishment have not been confirmed.

Now looking to complete his long journey to the Stamford Bridge first-team, Ziger is one of a handful of keepers available to Frank Lampard.

Edouard Mendy signed from Rennes for £22million in the autumn with Kepa Arrizabalaga his back-up.

Experienced shot-stopper Willy Caballero is third choice before Ziger.

And Lampard even handed a squad space to club legend Petr Cech, 38, as a ‘precautionary’ measure having first hired the keeper to be his technical and performance advisor.

Seven stars who quit Chelsea and became world class including Kevin De Bruyne, Mo Salah and Tiago

This post first appeared on thesun.co.uk

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Tony Ferguson slams ‘b****’ Conor McGregor and picks Jon Jones over old rival Khabib in UFC GOAT debate

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tony ferguson slams b conor mcgregor and picks jon jones over old rival khabib in ufc goat debate scaled

TONY FERGUSON called Conor McGregor a ‘b****’ and picked Jon Jones over old rival Khabib Nurmagomedov as the UFC’s Greatest of All Time.

Ferguson is hoping to contend the lightweight title after Nurmagomedov retired, with his belt now set to be vacated.

Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson have had five fights between them cancelled

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Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson have had five fights between them cancelled Credit: Getty Images – Getty

It comes as McGregor – who has not fought since January – appears close to agreeing a rematch with Dustin Poirier.

But Ferguson, 36, scoffed at the idea of the Irishman receiving an immediate title shot, having not won at 155lb since 2016.

He told Submission Radio: “He just deserves a chance to fight. F*** him and fighting for the title.

“He needs to fight. He needs to fight someone in the top 15, get his ass back on there, he don’t belong in the top five.

“Get the f*** outta here. F*** you pay me, dude. Nothing personal, but you’re still a b****.

“If you want that heavy competition quit hanging around everybody else and get your ass back in the gym.” 

Ferguson was set to finally fight Nurmagomedov, 32, this May, until for the FIFTH time, it was cancelled.

Russian Khabib was unable to travel to the US amid coronavirus restrictions, as Justin Gaethje instead stepped in and won.

Conor McGregor is close to agreeing his return to the UFC

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Conor McGregor is close to agreeing his return to the UFCCredit: Instagram / @thenotoriousmma
Jon Jones insisted he is the UFC's GOAT over Khabib

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Jon Jones insisted he is the UFC’s GOAT over KhabibCredit: Getty Images – Getty

Gaethje, 31, then earned a shot at Nurmagomedov in the UFC 254 headliner, but was tapped out in round two.

Afterwards, champion Khabib announced a shock retirement, and walked away as the UFC’s pound-for-pound No1.

It sparked debate on whether he can be considered the GOAT, rivalling Jon Jones, 33, Anderson Silva, 45, and Georges St-Pierre.

Jones, who vacated the light-heavyweight title this year, took exception and insisted his record 14 title wins and past opponents makes him the standout.

He tweeted: “Unanimous decision over last minute replacement Al Iaquinta to become champion.

“Conor McGregor is the only opponent he’s ever had that the general public actually knew.

“Catapulted my man to becoming the best ever, this is hilarious.”

Ferguson agreed, replying: “This Guy Gets It.”

Jon Jones hits back at claims Khabib is UFC GOAT as ex-champ rages ‘I have 15 world titles to his four’

This post first appeared on thesun.co.uk

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Kirstie Levell wears ‘special’ number 28 at Leicester as an emotional tribute to her brother Dan who died five years ago

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kirstie levell wears special number 28 at leicester as an emotional tribute to her brother dan who died five years ago scaled

KIRSTIE LEVELL wears the “special” number 28 at Leicester, in a moving tribute to her older brother Dan, who died five years ago.

In an interview with the BBC, the former Everton ace opened up about her brother’s sudden heart attack on 28 September, 2015 – a year after his shattering bowel cancer diagnosis.

Kirstie Levell wears the "special" number 28 at Leicester in tribute to her older brother Dan, who who died five years ago.

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Kirstie Levell wears the “special” number 28 at Leicester in tribute to her older brother Dan, who who died five years ago.Credit: Getty Images – Getty
Dan suffered a sudden heart attack on 28 September, 2015 - a year after his shattering bowel cancer diagnosis.

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Dan suffered a sudden heart attack on 28 September, 2015 – a year after his shattering bowel cancer diagnosis.Credit: Instagram / @kirstielevell

Dan was born with epilepsy which left him unable to speak, but he could still understand “pretty much everything”.

Their father, Shaun, cared for him full-time, having quit his day job.

Levell told the BBC: “The 28th is my mum’s birthday and I found that really mad,

“Dan had this terminal illness for such a long time and it was like he waited for her birthday to come round before saying, ‘right, that’s it now’.”

The Levells were a family unit, and they loved taking Dan to theme parks to ride rollercoasters and on dream trips to meet Disney characters in Paris, when they were kids.

Kirstie continued to pursue her dreams of becoming a professional footballer and Shaun would always fly out to England camps to show support.

She added: “Dan was my dad’s best mate as he had someone to travel with,

“The most difficult thing was when Dan fell ill, there was always a decision over whether my dad should come and support me or stay and look after my brother. We worked around it.”

Kirstie was hit with a huge blow when her dad, Shaun, was diagnosed with cancer in 2019

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Kirstie was hit with a huge blow when her dad, Shaun, was diagnosed with cancer in 2019Credit: Instagram / @kirstielevell

Levell was studying at university and playing for the Toffees when Dan was diagnosed with bowel cancer.

She was told it would all be fine, but chemotherapy failed and her brother’s shattering illness became terminal.

The Leicester goalkeeper said: “I just thought, ‘no, this can’t be happening.’

“I still carried on with my football though. Even the day after he died, I went to training at Everton. He passed away in the house so I felt the worst place to be in was the house.”

But Levell was left broken when her dad was hit with mouth cancer in 2019.

She continued: “That was an even bigger challenge for me. I just thought, ‘not again. I can’t lose another one.’

“My brother and my dad were the two who always came with me to football so I couldn’t lose them both,

“It was a hard one to take. I took him to his hospital appointments and the day he went in for his operation, I was there to pick him up. He wanted to get on with it and didn’t want a fuss.”

Thankfully, Shaun has recovered – and Kirstie, who arrived at Leicester this summer, chose a new number 28 as tribute to her beloved family.

View this post on Instagram

At 24 years old my beautiful brother Daniel Levell came into the world with brain damage meaning he couldn’t speak a single word. Around a year ago he was diagnosed with cancer, a cancer rare to any young person especially at 24, my whole world turned upside down, my defenceless brother, never harmed a single soul in his life had been given an illness which was irreversible on top of the problems he already had. Last night at around 20:15 I was forced to call emergency services after my brother stopped breathing. My dad was instructed over the phone to give CPR but he just wasn’t coming around, I prayed and prayed, he was taken to the hospital where his heart was worked on for another 40 minutes but his heart had fully stopped in our house. He was loved by everyone, I would never ever of changed my brother for anyone in the world, I pray there’s a heaven out there he deserves nothin but the best. I will never ever forget my gorgeous brother, cheeky smile and them piercing blue eyes around the house every day, everything I do as from today is for you, I will continue to make you proud in my career an life💪he fought for 24 strong years and this past year was absolute hell, he is my dan dan and he is out off all that pain and struggle. My absolute rock, inspiration and brother I love with all my heart till the end. I will never ever forget you, brightest star in the sky EVER love you so much ❤️💙❤️💙❤️😥😥👼💫

A post shared by KIRSTIE LEVELL (@kirstielevell) on Sep 29, 2015 at 8:44am PDT

Watch as WSL referee Lucy Oliver books a Brighton player TWICE without sending them off

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