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Transfer Rater: Koulibaly to United, Ake to City

Football Whispers
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Mid-week numbers: A season's first for Juve, Messi's scoring streak, Pep falls short

Juventus' loss against Atalanta was their first in domestic competitions this season.
Juventus' loss against Atalanta was their first in domestic competitions this season.

Mid-week matches can be rather taxing on the schedules of the regular football fan, but sometimes the action is just worth it. This was one of those times.

In England, Rafa Benitez's Newcastle United stunned Manchester City (2-1) at St. James' Park but Liverpool couldn't extend their lead at the top to seven as Leicester City held them 1-1 at Anfield. The gap at the top of the PL is at five now. Burnley ended Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's perfect start at Manchester United but a 2-2 draw means he is still...

Solanke transfer, like Neymar deal before it, could permanently distort the transfer market

This may be the only time you will see Neymar's and Dominic Solanke's names appear in the same sentence, but the two forwards actually have something in common: Both men may have distorted the transfer market with their fees.

At £198 million, Neymar's world-record move from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain in the summer of 2017 was a moment of financial folly that sent shockwaves through the game. The transfer was over £100m more than the previous record of £89.3m -- set by Paul Pogba's...

Weekend numbers: Ronaldo's missed 50, flying Reds and another PogBrace

The FC crew answer your tweets on the length of Unai Emery's honeymoon at Arsenal, Neil Warnock's success at Cardiff, New Year's resolutions and more.
Manchester City beat Southampton to end their losing run, but Shaka Hislop and Steve Nicol examine why teams are no longer afraid of the champions.
Stewart Robson and Peter Walton discuss the big refereeing decisions from the weekend's football action.
ESPN take a look back at a year Paul Pogba will never forget.

Liverpool ended the year with a 5-1 thrashing of Arsenal, while Manchester United continued their impressive start under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, brushing aside Bournemouth 4-1. Over in Italy, Juventus entered the winter after a VAR-controversy fueled 2-1 win over Sampdoria thanks to a brace from... who else, Cristiano Ronaldo. 

Here, then, are the best of the numbers from the last bit of footballing action in 2018.


6

Roberto Firmino's hat trick is the sixth in fixtures between Liverpool and Arsenal...

Paul Pogba, Man United rampant again as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer continues to work wonders

Paul Pogba and Manchester United played with a swagger unseen at Old Trafford in recent memory, ripping Bournemouth apart for a third straight win.

MANCHESTER, England -- Three points from Old Trafford on Manchester United's 4-1 win over Bournemouth in the Premier League on Sunday

1. Solskjaer making a case to be permanent boss

Before United's victory over Bournemouth, only Sir Matt Busby and Jose Mourinho had won their first three league games as Manchester United manager. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, caretaker until the end of the season, is now part of that exclusive club.

It is still very early -- he has not yet been in the job a full two...

LIVE Transfer Talk: Man United boss Solskjaer keen on Josh King

The transfer window for Europe's biggest clubs might be closed, but they are still working tirelessly behind the scenes to line up the arrival of their next star. Transfer Talk has been scouring the world's media to see who could be heading to your club when Jan. 1 arrives.

TOP STORY: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer turns to King

Manchester United are in need of a few new players but this one might surprise you. The Sun claim that new boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is after fellow Norwegian Josh King...

Weekend numbers: Messi's 43rd hat trick for Barcelona; Ronaldo gets Juve's 5000th

The FC crew answer your tweets on Liverpool's chances of winning the Premier League, Jose Mourinho's ability to manage a top side again and more.
Gab Marcotti believes the personality issue between Paul Pogba and Jose Mourinho is merely the Man United manager's attempt to create a scapegoat.
Following Manchester United's resounding defeat at Liverpool, Craig Burley slams the club's lack of leadership, from the boardroom to the pitch.
Jose Mourinho did not appreciate getting asked if he has the backing of the dressing room following Manchester United's loss to Liverpool.
With Liverpool getting their first league win over Manchester United since 2014, FC's Shaka Hislop examines the gulf in class between the two sides.
Alexis Nunes and Shaka Hislop break down Arsenal's surprising loss to Southampton, and determine if more defensive struggles are on the horizon for the Gunners.

Liverpool went back to the top of the Premier League table with an emphatic 3-1 win over Manchester United, while Cristiano Ronaldo helped Juventus to yet another milestone with a goal in their 1-0 derby win against Torino. Meanwhile, Lionel Messi did Lionel Messi things (scored three, assisted two) as Barcelona thrashed Levante 5-0. Here are the best numbers from the weekend's action:


1

Lionel Messi is the first player to reach double figures for both goals (14) and assists (10) in the top...