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The Sport Matrix: Wednesday 30 October 2013

Chelsea cruise as Mourinho beats Wenger yet again

Jose Mourinho came out on top against Arsène Wenger once again as his Chelsea side strode to a 2-0 Capital One Cup fourth-round victory against Arsenal last night. Goals midway through either half from Cesar Azpilicueta and Juan Mata took Mourinho’s side through to the last eight of a competition he won with Chelsea in 2005 and 2007 – beating Arsenal in the final on the latter occasion – and extended his unbeaten record against Wenger to nine matches.

Elsewhere, a much-changed Manchester United were too strong for Norwich, Javier Hernandez (above) scoring twice as the hosts won 4-0, with Phil Jones and Fabio also scoring.

 Two late penalties, from Matt Taylor and Jack Collison, earned West Ham a 2-0 victory at the Championship leaders Burnley, who had Keith Treacy sent off for the foul that led to the second penalty.

Capital rivals Fulham, however, were upset on their trip to Championship opposition, going down by the odd goal in seven as Lloyd Dyer’s 89th-minute winner secured a 4-3 victory for Leicester. MORE

Pardew: Next three games are decisive

Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew has admitted that his club’s season could be determined inside the next 11 days. The North-east side welcome Manchester City in the League Cup tonight and Chelsea on Saturday before travelling to Spurs on Sunday week. MORE

Coleman linked with Palace return

The Wales manager Chris Coleman has moved into the reckoning for the vacancy at Crystal Palace after caretaker Keith Millen confirmed he will remain in place for Saturday’s trip to West Bromwich. Tony Pulis and Alan Pardew are also in contention to replace Ian Holloway. MORE

O’Connor ‘an asset for English game’

London Irish coach Brian Smith has spoken of his delight in signing Australia international James O’Connor for the season. “He’ll be an asset not just for Irish, but the game in this country,” Smith said of the 23-year-old, who could debut against Northampton this weekend. MORE

England’s Ashton ‘close to old form’

Chris Ashton feels he is nearing his peak for England ahead of the autumn internationals. “I understand now where I was going wrong and I feel more confident, more relaxed,” the wing said ahead of Saturday’s meeting with Australia. “I’m back to my old self again.” MORE

Armstrong not vital to drug probe

An inquiry into past doping, announced by Brian Cookson yesterday, is not dependent on the participation of Lance Armstrong, the UCI’s new president insisted. Cookson also promised “a programme of change for the good of cycling”. MORE

Clarke: Ponting  has got my number

Australia captain Michael Clarke says he will not reignite his spat with Ricky Ponting. “I’ve said what I had to say on that issue,” the batsman said. “Ricky has my number and we’ve spoken for the last 15 years so I don’t think anything will change.” MORE

McNamara defends Burgess record

The disciplinary record of Sam Burgess has been defended by England coach Steve McNamara after the player was ruled out of the game with Ireland through suspension. “That is wrong,” he said. “Anyone knows he’s not that type of player.” MORE

Scotland edge Tonga in thriller

Scotland pipped Tonga 26-24 in a thrilling Group C match in Workington last night to become the only home nation to win their opening World Cup match. Steve McCormack’s side led 20-4 at the interval before withstanding a spirited Tongan fightback.

Red Sox on brink  of Series success

The bearded Boston Red Sox could tonight clinch the World Series. They lead 3-2 ahead of the final two home matches, and not since 1979 has a team trailed by that score before winning on enemy territory. MORE

Steve Bunce

Away from Hollywood a bizarre fight is moving closer to reality. In one corner is Floyd Mayweather and in the other old man Bernard Hopkins. It is only slightly less ridiculous than De Niro v Stallone. MORE

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