Liverpool face Everton in FA Cup third round, holders Manchester City host Port Vale

By Sports Desk December 02, 2019

Liverpool have been drawn at home to Merseyside rivals Everton in the FA Cup third round, while holders Manchester City will start the defence of their title at home to third-tier Port Vale.

The Toffees face Jurgen Klopp's side on Wednesday in the Premier League and will make the short trip to Anfield for a second time this season during the first week of January.

Pep Guardiola's City thumped Watford 6-0 in last season's final and have been given a favourable draw to kick-start their 2019-20 campaign, with John Askey's League Two side pitching up at the Etihad Stadium.

Manchester United face a difficult away tie against Premier League rivals Wolves, who knocked them out of the competition last season's quarter-finals, while Arsenal welcome Championship leaders Leeds United to the Emirates Stadium.

New Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho takes his side to Middlesbrough, managed by former Spurs defender Jonathan Woodgate, and Chelsea host Nottingham Forest.

Ties will take place between January 3 and 6.

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  • Coronavirus: Premier League stars spread the word to 'stay at home, save lives' Coronavirus: Premier League stars spread the word to 'stay at home, save lives'

    With the Premier League season on hold until April 30 at the earliest, the English top-flight's big names still managed to get their message across on Saturday.

    The Premier League, along with the majority of sporting tournaments and events across the globe, is currently suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.

    Many nations are in total or near-total lockdown, with people only allowed to leave their homes for essential trips and exercise.

    Though there is no sport to keep people entertained, some of the biggest names – both players and managers – from the Premier League came together on Saturday at 1500 GMT to spread the message: "stay at home, save lives."

     

    Using his official Twitter and Instagram accounts, Manchester City and England forward Raheem Sterling shared a video.

    "We need to stay at home, let's help our NHS by staying home, only leave if you need food, medicine or exercise," Sterling said. "The NHS have been doing a fantastic job so let's help them continue doing their wonderful work."

    He was also joined by his City team-mates Aymeric Laporte and Benjamin Mendy, as well as the club's ladies captain Steph Houghton.

    Across the city, Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer also offered his support to the campaign.

    "Stay home, protect the NHS, save lives," the Norwegian said in a video posted to United's Twitter feed.

    Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta tested positive for coronavirus on March 12 and, having now recovered, he also shared the message.

    "I encourage everybody, please be responsible and stay at home as much as possible," the Spaniard said.

    Meanwhile, Chelsea head coach Frank Lampard said: "To help save lives, you must stay home. Only leave home to buy essential food, medicine or for individual exercise and always stay two metres apart. This is an urgent message. Stay home, protect the NHS, save lives."

    Premier League leaders Liverpool shared a graphic which read: "Stay home, protect the NHS, save lives."

    Tottenham striker and England captain Harry Kane did not share a video, but wrote in a post on Twitter: "Saturday 3pm normally means football. But at the moment it's far more important everyone stays home. Do your bit. Protect the NHS, save lives."

  • Coronavirus: Klopp said Liverpool v Atletico going ahead was a 'criminal act' - Ancelotti Coronavirus: Klopp said Liverpool v Atletico going ahead was a 'criminal act' - Ancelotti

    Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp felt staging the Champions League match against Atletico Madrid at Anfield without restrictions earlier this month was a "criminal act", according to Carlo Ancelotti.

    Everton head coach Ancelotti has spoken with Klopp amid the coronavirus pandemic and said the German had concerns over his side’s continental fixture going ahead in front of a full stadium on March 11.

    Liverpool went out of the Champions League after the second leg of their last-16 tie ended in a 4-2 aggregate defeat, their last match before top-level football was widely halted due to the outbreak.

    Ancelotti told Corriere dello Sport: "I heard from Klopp the other day, he told me that going ahead with the game in those conditions was a criminal act. I think he was right."

    Former Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, Chelsea and Milan boss Ancelotti predicts there will be an economic "downsizing" after the virus has passed, with football feeling the effects of that.

    "We are all living a life that we were not used to and that will change us profoundly," he said. "I'm sure we will all have to downsize, starting with football.

    "Today, the priority is health, limiting the contagion. When you start again, when you finish, the dates - believe me, I don't care. At the moment, that's the last thing on my mind.

    "I hear talk about cutting salaries, suspension of payments. They seem like inopportune solutions.

    "Soon the economy will change, and that's at all levels: The TV rights will be less, players and coaches will earn less, tickets will cost less because people will have less money.

    "I repeat, what matters now is to fight the virus effectively. Then, of course, if it will be possible to continue the season... otherwise, amen."

  • Coronavirus: Brady admits Liverpool all but own title, reveals West Ham have eight in isolation Coronavirus: Brady admits Liverpool all but own title, reveals West Ham have eight in isolation

    West Ham vice-chairman Karren Brady has gone back on her previous claim that the season should be voided, saying the title is "all but owned by Liverpool" as the the Premier League aims to return to action.

    Brady was criticised earlier this month for suggesting in a newspaper column that the top-flight campaign in England should be declared null and void due to the impact of the coronavirus outbreak.

    She was accused of putting her own club's interests first, with the Hammers only outside the Premier League relegation zone by virtue of goal difference.

    Her suggestion riled Liverpool supporters in particular, given the expectation they will claim their first league title in 30 years should the season be completed.

    She defended her initial comments, saying she was merely thinking of players and fans amid the coronavirus pandemic, but has now said the Premier League plan to “get going as soon as possible” still stands.

    "It is a paradox that at a time football would be a great comfort to millions, it must not be played because, rightly, people's health is our priority," Brady wrote in The Sun.

    "What is going on in our country and the world is unprecedented and the game is not a necessity – like food or healthcare.

    "But to millions upon millions of us, football's disappearance from life is very relevant indeed. So, we all want it back in a hurry.

    "There's the Premier League to be decided although, obviously, not the title – which is all but owned by Liverpool.

    "But neither the Premier League nor the EFL have finished this season's games. Plus, there is the FA Cup, continental leagues, European competitions, European Championship and almost everything in between.

    "The next Premier League meeting is on Friday and the main topic of conversation will be when games can restart. When we - all Premier League clubs - last spoke, we agreed to get going again as soon as possible. And that games will run into July, if req­uired, to get this campaign finished.

    "This is the plan. This is what we want to deliver."

    Brady also revealed eight West Ham players went into self-isolation after showing mild symptoms of the virus.

    "Players are currently not in training and housebound to comply with social distancing rules currently in place until April 13, when we expect training to restart," she added.

    "And following further Government guidelines, we have eight West Ham players in isolation. Although I am relieved to say they are all showing mild symptoms and, along with their families, seem to be well."

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