The Sport Matrix: Tuesday 22 April 2014


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The Independent Online

Moyes to be sacked but decision was made months ago

Manchester United are expected to announce as early as today that they will be relieving David Moyes (pictured) of his duties as manager, having concluded long before Sunday’s punishing defeat at Everton that he cannot be trusted with the potential £150m war chest intended to meet the club’s aim of reclaiming the Premier League title next season.

The Glazer family appear to have sanctioned the removal of Moyes as far back as the Champions League defeat at Olympiakos on 25 February. The decision to get rid of the 50-year-old was discussed and possibly ratified at a recent United board meeting but there is a financial motive behind delaying removing him until now. MORE

Mourinho puts on sulk in Madrid

Jose Mourinho returned to Madrid yesterday ahead of Chelsea’s Champions League semi-final first leg against Atletico Madrid tonight in a sulk and maintained his side could still keep their composure despite Saturday’s meltdown in their 2-1 defeat to Sunderland. MORE

City win but at cost of injury to Silva

Manchester City beat West Bromwich Albion 3-1 to move within six points of Premier League leaders Liverpool. Pablo Zabaleta, Sergio Aguero and Martin Demichelis scored for City, who had David Silva carried off. Graham Dorrans struck for West Brom.  MORE

Dyche delights in promotion victory

Burnley manager Sean Dyche led his side into the top-flight with a 2-0 win over Wigan and vowed to enjoy the occasion before anticipating next season. “Before you ask me about being written off next season, can we just enjoy today? That would be brilliant,” he said. MORE

Austin secures QPR play-off spot

QPR beat Watford 2-1 at Loftus Road to secure their place in the Championship play-offs. Mathias Ranégie put the visitors ahead before Joey Barton’s free-kick levelled the score and Charlie Austin struck his 16th goal of the season to win it late on for Harry Redknapp’s side.

Betts hails Widnes’ recovery powers

Denis Betts praised the players he brought in after Widnes recovered from their Good Friday defeat to beat leaders St Helens. He said: “The lads who came into the side – Grant Gore, Macgraff Leuluai and Paul Johnson – really gave us a lift.” MORE

Hook move could cut link with Wales

James Hook could be lost to Wales if his French club Perpignan are relegated next month. Reports link the back with a move to Japan if they are relegated, meaning Wales coach Warren Gatland may not pick him for the World Cup. MORE

Brooks helps skittle Northants

Paceman Jack Brooks shone against his former club Northamptonshire as Yorkshire dismissed them for just 94 after earlier declaring on 459-9 in their First Division game. Brooks took 5-36 and Ryan Sidebottom claimed 4-16. MORE

Liverpool staying ‘modest’ in title bid

Raheem Sterling says Liverpool will stay grounded as they bid to win their first league title since 1990. “Everyone is just keeping each other modest and we know that if we keep working hard there is this real goal at the end of it now,” Sterling said. MORE

Horner defends Vettel over orders

Red Bull chief Christian Horner defended Sebastian Vettel after he initially refused to let Daniel Ricciardo through in Sunday’s Chinese GP. Horner said: “As soon as he understood the reasoning he moved aside.” MORE

Rise of Simeone 

Atlético Madrid coach Diego Simeone’s stock is continuing to rise, and the Argentine has proved his credentials by breaking the stranglehold of Barcelona and Real Madrid, as Pete Jenson reports. MORE