Emphatic win over Deontay Wilder justifies trainer switch, says Tyson Fury

‘Whoever’s next will get the same treatment’ – Fury responds to Joshua question

Hailing the impact of new trainer Javan ‘SugarHill’ Steward, Tyson Fury said: “I know I can do better. I’ve only just started.”

Fourteen months on from contesting a thrilling draw with Wilder in Los Angeles, Fury was an emphatic victor in Las Vegas on Saturday as he recorded a seventh-round TKO to claim the WBC heavyweight title.

Prior to the rematch, many observers expressed surprise at Fury ending his partnership with Ben Davison, the trainer who played such a key role in helping him shed weight and return to the highest level after he had suffered from depression following his first heavyweight championship win over Wladimir Klitschko in 2015.

However, while Fury (30-0-1) praised Davison following his success against Wilder, the 31-year-old felt he had proven a point by executing an entirely different gameplan under the tuition of Javan ‘SugarHill’ Steward and Andy Lee.

“When I made the decision to move from Ben Davison, who’d done a fantastic job by the way, I did it for a reason,” said Fury in a post-fight news conference. “Everybody was like this is a bad move, really bad move, but it worked out for the best.

 

“I believe in SugarHill, I believe in the style that he teaches and I knew we’d get it right on the night. Everything that I did in the ring, we practiced in the gym, setting up on the jab and landing the detonation right-hander.

“We didn’t mind revealing the gameplan, we had nothing to hide. I said what I was going to do, run across the ring to him, put him on the back foot and unload big shots on him.

“Everybody knows I’m a master slick boxer and I can jab and move for 12 rounds, but that didn’t work last time, I got a draw. A draw is a failure to me, because all I do is win, win, win. This time I wanted the knockout and I think the only way I could guarantee that I was going to get a win was the knockout.

“When me and SugarHill spoke, he told me that I would knock him out and I believed in what he said.

“I’m my own worst critic, even though it was a fantastic performance and I got a great win, I know I can do better. I’ve only just started, me and SugarHill with this style, I’ve had seven weeks to perfect a style that takes years, but I’m a quick learner and I aim to get back to work straight away.

“We’re going to be putting people to sleep left, right and centre.”

The 6ft 9in Fury weighed in at 19st 7lb for Saturday’s bout, 42lbs heavier than his considerably shorter opponent.

“With this weight alone and technique we can knock out anybody,” he added.

“When I jumped on the scales at 270 pounds, everyone thought he’s not come for a fight, he’s underestimated Wilder, he’s turned up for a payday. But tonight when I was in there I felt like a beast, this is my weight for sure.”

Deontay Wilder trainer caught out by towel throw, but ‘absolutely’ expects third Fury fight

‘Whoever’s next will get the same treatment’ – Fury responds to Joshua question

Deontay Wilder’s head trainer, Jay Deas, has said it was not his decision to throw in the towel and concede defeat in Saturday’s much-anticipated rematch with Tyson Fury.

Fourteen months on from their drawn first meeting, Wilder was on the receiving end of a heavy beating in Las Vegas as he lost his unbeaten record and WBC heavyweight title to a dominant opponent.

However, although Fury bossed the fight, twice sending his bloodied opponent to the canvas, both Wilder and Deas felt the ‘Bronze Bomber’ should have been afforded an opportunity to go out on his shield.

Co-trainer Mark Breland threw in the towel during round seven, a decision that was questioned by Deas in a post-fight news conference that Wilder missed in order to go to hospital for treatment on his injured ear.

“[Wilder] had a small cut inside the ear, [it] may have affected his equilibrium, so he’s just going to get a couple of stitches there,” explained Deas.

Discussing the fight’s ending, Deas added: “I’m the head coach of the team but we do things a little bit differently – 99 per cent of the time the head coach of the team is the guy that’s also the lead in the corner. Ours is a little bit more like a football team, American football, where the head coach doesn’t necessarily call the plays.

“Ours is a little bit like that, so what happened during the round was Mark [Breland] said something about throwing the towel in and I told him ‘don’t do that’, I didn’t think he should do that.

“Then the fight went a little bit longer and then I saw the towel go in. I haven’t talked to Mark about it but we’ll talk about it, figure out exactly what went on there.”

 

Wilder, who hinted he had been hampered by an injury in the lead-up to the contest, expressed his unhappiness in the ring, stating: “I make no excuses tonight. I just wish my corner would have let me go out on my shield – I’m a warrior and that’s what I do.”

The nature of Wilder’s loss has led to questions over whether he will activate a clause to fight Fury for a third time, but Deas is convinced the bout will take place.

“I think so, absolutely,” added the trainer. “Knowing him like I do, he will want the rematch.

“These guys have put on two tremendous fights. The public will want it. We’ll want it, they’ll want it. It seems natural. I think it’s what you’ll see happen.”

Tyson Fury warns Deontay Wilder and Anthony Joshua: Whoever’s next will get the same treatment

‘Whoever’s next will get the same treatment’ – Fury responds to Joshua question

Tyson Fury expects Deontay Wilder to agree to a third fight between the pair but vowed that his next opponent, even if it is Anthony Joshua, will get the same treatment as the dethroned WBC champion.

Fury produced a dominant performance at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on Saturday to become a heavyweight champion for the second time, 14 months on from a thrilling draw with Wilder in Los Angeles.

The Briton, a former WBA, WBO, and IBF title-holder, knocked down his opponent in the third and fifth rounds before the American’s corner threw in the towel in the seventh.

In his post-fight media conference, questions naturally turned to talk of Anthony Joshua, who holds every other major belt in the division.

Promoter Eddie Hearn told talkSPORT on Sunday that Joshua wants to fight Fury next.

That appears unlikely, however, as Joshua’s mandatory defense of his IBF title against Kubrat Pulev is reportedly set to be confirmed, while Wilder can enact a rematch clause with Fury.

Asked if he would fight Joshua next should Wilder decline the opportunity to immediately complete a trilogy, Fury said: “Deontay will need time to recover from the fight, but I’m sure that he’ll take a rematch.

“He’s a dynamite puncher and any time you can take somebody out with that danger, then you’re always in a fight so I’m pretty sure we’ll do it again, if he wants to.

 

“If he doesn’t want to, then these are my promoters and whatever they want to do I’m happy with. Whoever’s next will get the same treatment, that’s for sure.”

Despite the one-sided nature of the contest, Fury did express admiration for some changes Wilder made from their first meeting.

He added: “I felt like Deontay’s jab had improved and he did take his time more like he said he would. He was using his jab quite well actually.

“I was very impressed with his double jab that he was using and credit to his team for applying that in this fight because when you’ve got two giant guys, I think the jab is very important, it sets everything up.

“I thought he was definitely an improved fighter to what I thought before, and he was heavier, I wasn’t able to bully him around as I did last time in close because he was lot heavier than he ever was.

“I did see improvements in his game, but tonight was my night and I was never going to let anybody take it from me.”

Timo Werner hails Jurgen Klopp as Liverpool rumours intensify

Player of the Week – Matchday 23

Jurgen Klopp is the best coach in the world, according to Timo Werner, who has once more talked up a move from Leipzig to Liverpool.

RB Leipzig forward Werner has been heavily linked with a switch to Anfield after starring in his club’s push for a maiden Bundesliga title.

The 23-year-old, who has scored 27 goals for Leipzig in all competitions this season, said on Wednesday he was “very proud” to be linked with European champions Liverpool.

Werner has now talked up the runaway Premier League leaders once again after scoring in a 5-0 thrashing of Schalke on Saturday, a victory that kept Leipzig just a point behind Bundesliga front-runners Bayern Munich.

 

“Jurgen Klopp is the best coach in the world,” Werner told Sky Germany.

“There is a lot to suggest that my style of play would suit there [Liverpool].”

The Germany international did insist his focus was strictly on his current club for the remainder of the campaign.

“I’m not worried about that [a move to Liverpool], because we have so much to do with Leipzig,” he added.

“It’s difficult to think about where to play next year. You have to worry about it after the season. Inquiries come in, you don’t have to lie that it is so.”

Tyson Fury versus Anthony Joshua ‘has to happen this year’, says Eddie Hearn

‘Whoever’s next will get the same treatment’ – Fury responds to Joshua question

Anthony Joshua’s promoter, Eddie Hearn, says a unification fight between his fighter and Tyson Fury “has to happen this year” after the latter produced a phenomenal performance to dethrone Deontay Wilder.

In a much-anticipated rematch in Las Vegas, Fury knocked the previously undefeated Wilder down twice and won via TKO in the seventh round when the American’s corner threw in the towel.

Fury now holds the WBC heavyweight strap, just over four years after he sensationally beat Wladimir Klitschko to become a world champion for the first time.

The other major belts in the division belong to Joshua, who avenged his shock loss to Andy Ruiz Jr. in December, and Hearn feels the two Britons must now meet in 2020.

Responding to a Twitter user who wrote, “Not a chance Eddie Hearn is letting Joshua anywhere near Tyson now,” the promoter replied: “Of course I am! And AJ wants it bad..this fight is gonna and has to happen this year!”

 

Wilder now has 30 days to demand a third fight with Fury through a rematch clause, although the one-sided nature of Saturday’s bout would appear to reduce the chances of the two meeting again.

In a follow-up tweet, Hearn suggested Joshua now represented a much more enticing option for Fury, given the winner would become the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world.

“No need for a third let’s go straight to it in the Summer! #undisputed,” wrote Hearn, while DAZN USA’s Twitter account shared a mocked-up image of Fury and Joshua together in the ring.

 

Reports in recent weeks have suggested Joshua will return to the ring in June against Kubrat Pulev.

Reports say Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo to join forces at Inter Miami?

Player of the Week – Matchday 23

After dominating European football for over a decade, could Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo shelve their rivalry and come together as team-mates?

David Beckham might be the man to make it happen.

The former Manchester United and Real Madrid midfielder appears to have ambitious plans for his new MLS franchise.

TOP STORY – MESSI, RONALDO WANTED AT INTER MIAMI

Barcelona captain Messi, 32, and Juventus talisman Ronaldo, 35, will end their careers on the same side if Inter Miami co-owner Beckham gets his wish, according to the Mirror.

The newspaper claims the new MLS outfit are “already thinking big” and could look to lure football’s two biggest superstars to the United States.

LA Galaxy have also been linked with a move for Messi but Minnesota United head coach Adrian Heath believes Beckham’s pulling power has the potential to create a dream attacking duo.

“For Ronaldo and Messi, the two obvious destinations if they came to the MLS would be Los Angeles and Miami,” Heath told the Mirror.

“And, with his links to both players and the plan Beckham and his backers have in place, I can really only see them going to Miami.”

 

ROUND-UP

– Manchester United are set to launch a £50million bid for Wolves forward Diogo Jota, scorer of a Europa League hat-trick on Thursday, reports the Express.

– United have also been linked with Birmingham City teenager Jude Bellingham but the Red Devils are set to face competition from Liverpool, according to the Daily Star.

– Serie A leaders Juventus are at the front of the queue for Paul Pogba but Paris Saint-Germain also hope to land the French star, reports Le10 Sport.

– PSG, meanwhile, are planning for life after Thomas Tuchel, who is said to be in talks with Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich. L’Equipe claims the Ligue 1 champions could look to replace him with either Massimiliano Allegri or Lazio boss Simone Inzaghi.

– Premier League clubs Sheffield UnitedWolves and Burnley are showing interest in Leeds United midfielder Kalvin Phillips, suggests the Sun.

Bloodthirsty Fury dominates Wilder to win WBC heavyweight title

‘Whoever’s next will get the same treatment’ – Fury responds to Joshua question

Deontay Wilder’s undefeated record came to an end against a dominant Tyson Fury in Las Vegas.

There was no repeat of their contentious December 2018 draw as Fury overwhelmed the previously undefeated champion before Wilder’s corner threw in the towel in the seventh round on Saturday.

The Brit took a 42-pound weight advantage into a bout he described as the biggest the division had seen in 50 years and delivered on his promise to seek a knockout in Las Vegas.

Fury landed huge blows from the first bell and sent Wilder to the canvas in rounds three and four, only for the referee to rule them both slips, and at one point licked his opponent’s blood-stained neck.

Gianluca Mager continues Rio run, Yoshihito Nishioka into Delray Beach final as rain wreaks havoc

Thiem upset by qualifier Mager in Rio Open quarter-final

Dominic Thiem was dumped out of the Rio Open as Yoshihito Nishioka advanced at Delray Beach on Saturday.

Down a set when forced off on Friday, top seed Thiem failed to stave off a quarter-final loss once play resumed on Saturday.

Italian qualifier Mager turned his overnight advantage into a 7-6 (7-4) 7-5 victory before again taking to the court later in the day for his semi-final.

The 25-year-old’s opponent, lucky loser Attila Balazs, earlier beat Pedro Martinez 2-6 6-4 6-2 but was left clinging onto a place in the tournament when the rain returned, the Hungarian trailing 7-6 (7-4) 3-3 against Mager.

The winner will likely face Cristian Garin in the final after the Chilean third seed opened up a 6-4 4-4 lead over Borna Coric in the other postponed semi-final.

 

Poor conditions also interrupted the Delray Beach Open, where Milos Raonic was unable to get underway against Reilly Opelka.

The big servers had their semi-final rescheduled for Sunday and will compete for a spot in the decider against Yoshihito Nishioka, who battled from a set down to defeat Ugo Humbert 1-6 6-4 6-0.

Nishioka has reached the final despite dropping the opener in three of his four matches at the ATP 250 event.

“After the first set I just figured out how to play against him and just kept trying to do it and then it worked,” he said, as quoted by the ATP Tour.

“If I lose the first set it’s okay, I just figure out how he’s going to play, how I have to play against him and then from the second set I say, ‘Okay, let’s do it this way.'”

Justin Thomas holds slender lead in Mexico, brilliant Jon Rahm breaks course record

Rahm gets hole-in-one, Thomas leads 3rd round of WGC-Mexico

Justin Thomas holds a one-shot lead after an eventful third round at the WGC-Mexico Championship that included Jon Rahm breaking the course record.

After scores of 67 and 66 over the previous two days, Thomas continued going in the right direction by signing for a 65 on Saturday, moving him to 15 under par.

The American started and finished his work with bogeys, yet in between had eight birdies to put himself clear at the top of a high-class leaderboard and in pole position for his third title of the 2019-20 PGA Tour season.

Erik van Rooyen and Patrick Reed head the chasing pack after both signed for 67s at the Club de Golf Chapultepec.

Van Rooyen had moved into contention at the halfway stage with a 62 that tied the course record – but Rahm went one better to climb to 11 under.

The Spaniard made a brilliant start with birdies at six of his first seven holes and following three more after the turn, he produced a stunning hole-in-one at the par-three 17th, his tee shot dropping into the cup on the second bounce.

 

“With the start I had today, the only thing in mind was trying to get as close as possible to the leaders,” Rahm – whose solitary blemish during a spectacular day came at the eighth – said after the lowest score of his professional career.

“If I had a good finish, I was going to have a chance tomorrow, and that’s kind of what gave me a second wind on the back nine.”

Rahm is tied for fourth alongside Ryder Cup team-mate Rory McIlroy (68) and halfway leader Bryson DeChambeau, who followed up Friday’s 63 with a 71 that included a double-bogey seven after finding water at the sixth.

Englishmen Tyrrell Hatton and Paul Casey are a further shot back on 10 under.

Inter match among three Serie A games postponed amid coronavirus concerns

‘We’ve been rightfully praised’ Inzaghi as high-flying Lazio face Genoa

After the coronavirus claimed two lives in Italy, three Serie A fixtures have been postponed.

Inter’s game against Sampdoria and two other Serie A matches have been postponed following the recent coronavirus outbreak in Italy.

At a news conference, Italian prime minister Giuseppe Conte confirmed Sunday’s fixtures in the Lombardy and Veneto regions, including the Hellas Verona-Cagliari and Atalanta-Sassuolo clashes, would not go ahead.

The move comes as part of preventative measures against the spread of the coronavirus, officially named Covid-19, after two people died and dozens more reportedly tested positive.

Saturday’s scheduled Serie B match between Ascoli and Cremonese was earlier postponed and up to 88 amateur football matches were also called off, according to Italian news agency ANSA.

In a short statement, Inter announced only that their meeting with Sampdoria at San Siro was postponed “to a later date”.

The third-placed Nerazzurri sit six points behind Serie A leaders Juventus, who won 2-1 against SPAL on Saturday.

Sunday’s three other games are expected to go ahead as planned.

Genoa are due to host title-chasing Lazio, with Torino to face Parma and Roma entertaining Lecce.

Eden Hazard injury ‘doesn’t look good’, admits Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane

‘We can’t give up now’ says Zidane after Real Madrid defeat at Levante

Eden Hazard’s availability for Real Madrid’s crunch fixtures against Manchester City and Barcelona appears in doubt after Zinedine Zidane admitted his latest injury “doesn’t look good”.

The Belgium forward hobbled off in the second half of the 1-0 loss to Levante on Saturday and he could be seen on the bench receiving treatment on his lower right leg.

Hazard only recently returned from a fractured right ankle so the sight of him appearing to have another problem in the same area was alarming for Zidane.

Madrid face Pep Guardiola’s City in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie on Wednesday before a Clasico date with new LaLiga leaders Barcelona next weekend.

“It doesn’t look good,” Zidane told reporters at a news conference.

“It can become weak where you’ve had an injury. It is a blow, let’s see.

“It’s sore now but we’ll see tomorrow when we do more tests.”

It was a thoroughly miserable outing for Madrid as they suffered a surprise defeat thanks to Jose Luis Morales’ stunning late effort.

 

Madrid drew 2-2 with Celta Vigo at home in their previous outing and they will host Barcelona next Sunday knowing they are now two points behind their great rivals in the title race.

Captain Sergio Ramos revealed the level of frustration he was feeling in a social media post.

“We’re p***ed off,” he wrote on Twitter.

“But we can’t allow our heads to drop.

“We have to reset now and tomorrow push harder than ever before for a very important week. We’re counting on you.”

I thought VAR helped a referee – Stefano Pioli fumes at Fiorentina penalty call

‘We’ve been rightfully praised’ Inzaghi as high-flying Lazio face Genoa

Milan must take responsibility for their draw against 10-man Fiorentina, says Stefano Pioli, but the coach was convinced his side should not have had a late penalty awarded against them.

Ante Rebic’s goal put Milan ahead after 56 minutes in Saturday’s Serie A clash, with Fiorentina’s chances diminished further when Dalbert was sent off after a VAR check.

But Fiorentina rallied late on and were given a penalty when Alessio Romagnoli was deemed to have fouled ex-Rossoneri striker Patrick Cutrone, even though the defender seemed to have got the ball.

Erick Pulgar converted beyond Asmir Begovic – who had replaced the injured Gianluigi Donnarumma early in the second half – and Milan were ultimately fortunate to come away with a point after Martin Caceres and Dusan Vlahovic missed late chances.

Though Pioli acknowledged his side had slipped up in failing to retain their lead, he was sure Romagnoli was unfairly penalised.

“We have to take full responsibility, as we had the game in hand, did everything we needed to do, but then stopped playing once Fiorentina went down to 10 men and assumed the game was over,” he told DAZN.

“There are regrets, we certainly shoulder responsibility, because we made errors.

 

“As for the penalty, there are no doubts, it was not a penalty. You could tell from the bench that the ball moved when Romagnoli went in.

“I do not understand why technology is not used in these situations. I do not understand it. I thought and had taken it for granted that VAR helped a referee change an incorrect decision, but apparently that is not the case.

“It’s difficult to accept, because we’ve had some strange incidents going against us. We shoulder a lot of the responsibility, because we made mistakes, but on the other situation, there’s nothing we can do to control that.”

While Milan will leave Florence feeling hard done by, Cutrone – who clapped the travelling support after the game – insisted he had no intention to celebrate if he had been on spot-kick duties.

“Milan will never be an opponent for me. I thank them for all they gave me and the applause at the end,” Cutrone told DAZN.

“I am happy with the point, I thank the Viola fans for their support and the Milan fans for their salute. If I had taken the penalty, I never would have celebrated because I respect Milan so much and I would never do that to them.

“I have to thank Fiorentina for believing in me. I have to repay the club with performances and I hope many goals.”

Eden Hazard concern? Real Madrid suffer injury worry ahead of Manchester City, Barcelona fixtures

‘We can’t give up now’ says Zidane after Real Madrid defeat at Levante

Real Madrid have huge games in the Champions League and LaLiga coming up, but could be without Eden Hazard.

The Belgium international, who has only recently returned from a fractured ankle, was clearly in pain as he was replaced by Vinicius Junior in the 67th minute with the score at 0-0.

Hazard could be seen sitting on the visitors’ bench receiving treatment to his lower right leg, with Zidane now waiting to discover the full extent of the problem ahead of two huge home fixtures.

Madrid, who went on to lose 1-0 to Levante, host Manchester City on Wednesday in the first leg of their last-16 Champions League tie, followed by the visit of title rivals Barcelona in league action next Sunday.

Hazard was making just his second outing since requiring surgery on his right ankle after he was hurt against Paris Saint-Germain on November 2.

His debut campaign in the Spanish capital got off to a delayed start following a thigh injury in pre-season, forcing him to wait until September 14 to make his debut following his arrival from Chelsea in June.

Brendan Rodgers feels Leicester were denied ‘clear penalty’ in Manchester City defeat

‘That’s what VAR is for’ – Rodgers says Leicester should have had penalty in defeat to Man City

Leicester City boss Brendan Rodgers insisted his side were denied a “clear penalty” in Saturday’s 1-0 defeat to Manchester City at the King Power Stadium.

The hosts had a couple of appeals turned down in the first half for Ederson’s challenge on Kelechi Iheanacho and a possible handball against Kevin De Bruyne.

Whereas De Bruyne got away with blocking James Maddison’s free-kick with his arm, the officials pointed to the spot at the other end for a similar incident involving Dennis Praet.

Rodgers agreed referee Paul Tierney was right to award the visitors a penalty, which Sergio Aguero failed to convert, but felt Leicester should also have been given one of their own.

“[Praet] has gone to block it and it’s a penalty – we accept that. But you hope you get them for you as well,” he told Sky Sports.

 

“But we’re disappointed we didn’t get a penalty – it’s so clear. I felt it was the reason VAR was brought in.

“The ball was going towards the goal, the corner, and Kevin De Bruyne stops it. He’s lifted his arms up.

“If you look at the reaction of the other players in the wall, their hands were down. It’s handball.”

Kasper Schmeichel kept the champions at bay for large parts of the game by producing a string of fine saves, including a penalty save to frustrate Aguero.

City have now missed their last four top-flight penalties, each by a different player, but they were rescued by substitute Gabriel Jesus’ late strike three minutes after he was introduced.

 

“They are incredibly quick with Jamie Vardy, Harvey Barnes and Kelechi,” Guardiola said at his post-match news conference.

“It was an incredible test for us. I’m so pleased for the victory.”

Guardiola’s side face Real Madrid on Wednesday for the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie and the Catalan coach has been handed a big fitness boost.

Raheem Sterling has missed City’s last two games with a hamstring injury, while Aymeric Laporte left the field early in the second half against Leicester, but both men could feature in Madrid.

“[Laporte] asked me to be substituted, but he’s not injured,” Guardiola said.

“He’s been four months, five months injured, we can’t forget that. He had to run a lot. It was different against West Ham, we could control it easier. But he’s okay.

“Raheem is also much, much, much better. I think he’ll be ready.”