The Sport Matrix: Friday 21 March 2014


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The Independent Online

Spurs fall just short after comeback

Tottenham Hotspur went out of the Europa League, despite producing up a spirited second-half performance against Benfica, drawing 2-2 yesterday but losing 5-3 on aggregate. Two Nacer Chadli goals put them 2-1 up on the night but a late Lima penalty killed off any slim hopes. MORE

Rooney: We owed Moyes big display

Wayne Rooney said Manchester United’s players “owed” their manager David Moyes, ahead of their 3-0 win over Olympiakos that put the club into today’s Champions League quarter- final draw. He said: “We know as players we are better than what we’ve done this season.” MORE

Wenger: I learn from every game

Arsène Wenger insists there is always reason to seek improvement, even though he stands on the verge of completing 1,000 games in charge of Arsenal. He reaches the landmark when his side travel to Chelsea tomorrow and he said: “You learn from every game.” MORE

Pardew already pursuing players

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has revealed that planning for a summer overhaul of his squad has already started. He confirmed that targets were being pursued and business would be done early in the summer window, saying: “Our process has started.” MORE

Ali makes the most of England chance

England newcomer Moeen Ali is excited about tomorrow’s World Twenty20 opener against New Zealand. “I’m finding it really good being with England and making the most of my time with the coaches and players,” said the all-rounder. MORE

Murray: Lendl was huge help to me

Andy Murray said he would take his time before appointing a new coach but admitted his split with Ivan Lendl had been tough to take. “He’s been a big part of my life,” the 26-year-old Scot said yesterday. “He made a huge difference to my tennis.” MORE

Euro tournament finally set to launch

A new elite rugby tournament, very similar to the Rugby Champions Cup competition proposed by the leading English and French teams several months ago, will be in place for next season, as a replacement for the current Heineken Cup.

Magath gets on ‘Boris Bike’ to work

The Fulham manager Felix Magath has been using a  “Boris Bike” to commute to the club’s training ground. Ahead of tomorrow’s game away at Manchester City, he said: “At the moment I’m without a car and I have to move.” MORE

Wigan Warriors tame Wolves

Super League champions Wigan Warriors earned a 12-4 win at Warrington Wolves, who suffered their second home defeat in three matches. Liam Farrell and Blake Green scored the visitors’ tries. MORE

Bale’s Real value

After a sticky start in Spain, Gareth Bale now leads the assists chart and is set to start Sunday’s El Clasico. Pete Jenson explains why he his showing value for the £86m he cost Real Madrid. MORE