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The Sports Matrix: Monday 5 March 2012
Villas-Boas pays price for poor performances
The Chelsea owner, Roman Abramovich, yesterday told his squad what he expected of them at a private meeting at the club's training ground, minutes after he had personally sacked the manager Andre Villas-Boas. The Portuguese paid the price for a poor run of form. Roberto Di Matteo, the assistant who was imposed on Villas-Boas, was asked to take charge to the end of the season. The club enquired about Rafael Benitez taking a similar role but were unable to come to an agreement with the former Liverpool manager. pages MORE
Man United 'carry luck' to win 3-1
Sir Alex Ferguson has admitted that Man United rode their luck in their 3-1 win over Tottenham at White Hart Lane yesterday: "We certainly carried a lot of luck. Tottenham are a very good team. It was a massive performance from our defenders." MORE
Adlington secures Olympic place
Rebecca Adlington has expressed "relief" after booking her spot in the British Olympic swimming team after an excellent display in the 400m at the national trials. "So much relief, happiness, excitement. An amazing feeling – after four years of training." MORE
Pogrebnyak in line for a new deal
Fulham manager Martin Jol has talked about extending Pavel Pogrebnyak's contract after the loan signing scored a hat-trick in yesterday's 5-0 win over Wolves, "We're talking about new deals. You want to keep your best players and Pavel is one of them." MORE
Grand Slam dream over for France
Ireland held out to secure a 17-17 draw in Paris, ending France's chances of a Grand Slam. Two tries from Tommy Bowe had given Ireland a 17-6 half-time lead but France stormed back in the second half, only to miss a series of drop goal attempts. MORE
Pardew blames catalyst Cattermole
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew blamed Sunderland's captain, Lee Cattermole, for an "ugly" Tyne-Wear derby which ended in a 1-1 draw. Two red cards and eight bookings overshadowed a scrappy match. "Cattermole set the scene, it was ugly," said Pardew. MORE
Wiggins off to a flyer in Paris-Nice
Bradley Wiggins' chances of becoming Britain's first Paris-Nice winner in more than four decades got off to a near-perfect start as he took second place in the race's opening time trial yesterday, one second behind Sweden's Gustav Larsson. MORE
Opinion: James Lawton
If Roman Abramovich retains much of an appetite at Chelsea, what does he do? The most persuasive option screams out. It is to own up to his folly, and accept the return of Jose Mourinho. MORE
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