In today’s edition of contender or pretender we are going away from the team angle and focusing on an individual race. Specifically the NHL goal scoring race. For the better part of the past 15 years we have been conditioned to assume that Alex Ovechkin is going to finish at the top of this list because, well, more often than not he has. He has finished with at least a share of the goal scoring crown in nine of the past 13 seasons, and seven of the previous eight. He has owned this category. But with only eight goals in his first 20 games this season, and several other players around the league racing out to great starts, it seems that his reign is coming to an end. At least for this season. For most of this season Maple Leafs forward Auston Matthews has been running away with the goal scoring lead. He enters the week with 18 goals in his first 23 games, and for a short period of time was making people ask whether or not he could hit the 50-goal mark in a 56-game season. A … [Read more...] about Contender or pretender: Matthews’ challengers in goal scoring race
J league top goal scorers
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Bruno Fernandes are both feeling pretty good after Manchester United moved back into second place by snapping Manchester City’s 21-match winning streak. Interestingly, though, they both know that United’s win is a good sign because of how often they’ve played better but failed to get results. [ MORE: Three things learned | Player ratings ] In fact, Solskjaer worried that United might not make it to halftime with the lead. “We’re on the front foot for 15 minutes, really, really at it,” he said. “Then for the next 30 minutes we played too much on the result. We knew what we were doing but still I’d like a little bit more on the ball for my heart. When you defend for long times against good teams, inevitably they will create chances.” “We had to get to halftime to get a hold of everyone. I know it’s hard. You’ve gotta work hard defensively, use your energy, but then come alive again.” What a difference that break made, though United got a … [Read more...] about Bruno, Solskjaer on Manchester United’s derby win; Rashford injury update
Bayer Leverkusen finally on the right path The women's Bundesliga table isn't always the most surprising; most of the time, it's the same teams in the title race. But this week, it's a little different, with Bayer Leverkusen sitting fourth with 23 points after 14 games. This weekend, the team secured a dominant and impressive 4-2 victory over Turbine Potsdam, thanks in part to a hat trick from top scorer Milena Nikolic, who now has 10 goals in 13 games. Bayer Leverkusen may be a big name in men's football, but the women's team has often failed to unleash its full potential in the past. Introduced back in 2008 after taking over nearby sports club TuS Köln, Leverkusen's women have only been established in the Bundesliga since 2018, albeit usually in a relegation battle rather than challenging at the top. But they are aiming higher now, with coach Achim Feifel stating recently that their goal is sixth place. So, what's changed? First, most of their key players have remained at … [Read more...] about Women’s Bundesliga roundup: Bayer Leverkusen on the march
It moved Brendan Rodgers's side above Manchester United into second place with 53 points from 28 games with United away to runaway leaders Manchester City on Sunday. * Earlier Southampton ended a horrendous run of form as they beat bottom club Sheffield United 2-0. Burnley also secured an important point in their quest to stay clear of trouble as they drew 1-1 with Arsenal. * Wolverhampton Wanderers defender Romain Saiss provided a contender for miss of the season during a 0-0 Midlands derby stalemate away to Aston Villa in the Premier League on Saturday. The draw left Villa in ninth place on 40 points from 26 games with Wolves in 12th spot on 35 points. * Paris St Germain geared up for their Champions League last-16 second leg against Barcelona with a no-nonsense 3-0 victory at Stade Brestois in the French Cup last 32 on Saturday. Elsewhere, RC Lens, who are fifth in Ligue 1, slumped to a 3-2 defeat at third division Red Star. Olympique Lyonnais advanced by beating Ligue 2 side … [Read more...] about Leicester turn up heat in top-four race
IMAGE: Six successive home defeats have put champions Liverpool's top four finish in doubt as their collapse from the leading team in the land has been fast and furious. Photograph: Laurence Griffiths/Reuters Liverpool's defence of a Premier League crown won at a canter last season has become a nightmare as Juergen Klopp's once-imperious side implodes and sets unwanted club records. An unprecedented sixth successive Anfield defeat, this time by relegation-threatened Fulham on Sunday, marks not only their worst-ever run at their former fortress, but has put a top four finish in doubt as their collapse from the leading team in the land has been fast and furious. The statistics make grim reading. Simon Gleave, head of sports analysis at Nielsen's Gracenote, says Liverpool are the only club in Europe’s top five leagues not to have picked up a point at home in their last six matches, and are 89th out of 98 clubs for their overall record in the previous half dozen games. The … [Read more...] about Why have Liverpool gone from monsters to minnows?