EPL

It's been a tough time – Aubameyang thankful for Arsenal's support

By Sports Desk February 14, 2021

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang revelled in his stunning return to Arsenal's starting line-up after his hat-trick propelled the Gunners to a 4-2 win over Leeds United.

Aubameyang put Arsenal 2-0 up by the 41st minute of Sunday's clash, opening the scoring early on before doubling his tally with a penalty.

The spot-kick marked his 200th goal across Europe's top five leagues, with the 31-year-old then completing his first Premier League hat-trick two minutes after the restart.

That goal, which came after Hector Bellerin had rounded off a neat team move, put Arsenal 4-0 up, though Pascal Struijk and Helder Costa made life uncomfortable in the second half.

Aubameyang had not started a league match since January 18, with the Gabon striker having been handed a leave of absence to help care for his ill mother.

He was quick to hail the support he received from Arsenal, both internally and from the fanbase.

"Happy, really happy, and my kids are going to be happy because they're going to get it [the match ball]," Aubameyang told Sky Sports.

"Really happy with the performance from the team today, we knew that it was going to be a hard game, they never gave up, they fought a lot, in the end I think we had good game management.

"Maybe a bit nervy [at 4-2] but we managed it well in the end, we won the game. It was important to show that this is our home, this is where we have to win games.

"It means a lot to me. I'm a guy who always works hard, tries to give the best, for first my family and then the team as well. It's been a tough time for me but now it's time to get the smile back, score goals and win games.

"From everybody around the club, everyone was giving a lot of love to me, my mum and my family – I'm really proud to be part of this family, I have to say thank you to everyone at the club and the fans as well because I received a lot of messages.

"Today's win and the goals are for them."

Mikel Arteta was delighted with the all-round discipline and intensity shown by his side – factors he believes are the only way to match up to Marcelo Bielsa's free-flowing team, who have now conceded 42 goals but also scored 40 in the league.

"Very pleased with the result, very happy with the performance, especially in the first half against a fantastic team that make life so difficult for you and really put high demands into every action, with or without the ball," Arteta told Sky Sports.

"We read the situations really well and created big problems for them. I said to the players at half-time that Leeds will never give up, they throw everything at you and that's what they've done. We scored the fourth goal, could have scored more but they made it hard.

"Every action, you have to be full gas. If you don't take the game like that you are in big trouble. You have to be very precise to find the next pass, the next movement.

"It was great, the amount of chances we created and the types of goals we scored, I am really pleased with that."

Related items

  • Red-hot Randle follows in Carmelo's footsteps as Knicks roll on, Durant hurt in Nets defeat Red-hot Randle follows in Carmelo's footsteps as Knicks roll on, Durant hurt in Nets defeat

    Julius Randle produced another inspiring performance as the streaking New York Knicks topped the New Orleans Pelicans 122-112 in overtime.

    Knicks All-Star Randle posted 33 points and 10 assists to lead the New York franchise to their sixth successive NBA win on Sunday.

    Randle recorded his fourth consecutive game with at least 30 points, becoming the first Knicks player since Carmelo Anthony in 2014 to accomplish the feat.

    Reggie Bullock nailed a three-pointer for the Knicks with 2.3 seconds remaining in regulation before the home team outscored Zion Williamson's Pelicans 19-9 in OT at Madison Square Garden.

    Derrick Rose scored a season-high 23 points for the Knicks, who are in the midst of their longest winning streak since 2013-14 as they eye their first playoff appearance since 2013.

    Williamson's 34 points, nine rebounds, five assists and two steals were not enough for the visiting Pelicans.

    Meanwhile, Kevin Durant suffered a left thigh contusion in the Brooklyn Nets' 109-107 loss away to the Miami Heat.

    Durant – who only returned from a 23-game injury absence this month – left the game in the opening quarter, having gone three-for-three shooting to finish with eight points in four minutes.

    Bam Adebayo (21 points and 15 rebounds) lifted the Heat with his buzzer-beating jump shot.

     

    Hawks soar past Pacers

    Clint Capela (25 points and 24 rebounds) and Trae Young (34 points and 11 assists) helped the Atlanta Hawks power to a 129-117 victory against the Indiana Pacers. Bogdan Bogdanovic and Kevin Huerter contributed 23 points each for the Hawks, who have won eight of 10 games and are 17-6 under interim head coach Nate McMillan.

    Kawhi Leonard returned from a four-game absence, tallying 15 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists in the Los Angeles Clippers' 124-105 success at home to the Minnesota Timberwolves.

    Chris Boucher put up 31 points and 11 rebounds for the Toronto Raptors, who downed the lowly Oklahoma City Thunder 112-106 for a third consecutive win. Oklahoma City's Aleksej Pokusevski (six) became the first Thunder rookie with five-plus blocks in a game since Serge Ibaka in 2010.

    The Charlotte Hornets snapped a four-game skid behind Terry Rozier as his 34 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds saw off the Portland Trail Blazers 109-101.

    De'Aaron Fox's 30 points and 12 assists guided the Sacramento Kings to a 121-107 win over the Dallas Mavericks. Dallas All-Star Luka Doncic finished with a game-high 37 points.

     

    Thunder continue to be silenced

    The Thunder are now in the midst of a season-worst losing streak of 10 games after losing to the Raptors.

    Josh Richardson struggled again for the Mavericks. He was just three-for-nine shooting, while making only one of his five three-point attempts for seven pints. Mavericks team-mate Tim Hardaway Jr. (eight points) finishing two-for-10 shooting.

     

    Bridges goes bang!

    Miles Bridges is becoming known for his slam dunks. The Hornets star produced another memorable dunk in the second quarter.

     

    Sunday's results

    Atlanta Hawks 129-117 Indiana Pacers
    New York Knicks 122-112 New Orleans Pelicans (OT)
    Miami Heat 109-107 Brooklyn Nets
    Charlotte Hornets 109-101 Portland Trail Blazers
    Houston Rockets 114-110 Orlando Magic
    Toronto Raptors 112-106 Oklahoma City Thunder
    Los Angeles Clippers 124-105 Minnesota Timberwolves
    Sacramento Kings 121-107 Dallas Mavericks

     

    Warriors at 76ers

    Red-hot Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors (28-29) visit the Eastern Conference-leading Philadelphia 76ers (39-17) on Monday. The 76ers have won four straight games.

  • Buccaneers star Tom Brady recovering well after knee surgery Buccaneers star Tom Brady recovering well after knee surgery

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady said he is feeling "pretty good" following offseason knee surgery.

    After leading the Buccaneers to NFL glory in February, Super Bowl LV MVP Brady underwent an operation on his knee.

    Brady provided an update on his recovery, with the 43-year-old superstar hopeful of being able to resume training in June.

    "Yeah, I hope so. I hope so. I feel pretty good and I push myself pretty hard," Brady said at head coach Bruce Arians' Family Foundation gala on Sunday, having signed a contract extension following the 2020 campaign.

    "I feel pretty good. I don't know if I could go this week, but, we'll see how things play out. It's a long time between now and the beginning of the season, and just be smart about all these different things that we have to do and fulfill, but we all take a lot of pride in being ready to go and I'm sure we will be."

    Brady – in his first season with the Buccaneers after 20 successful years with the New England Patriots – won his seventh Lombardi Trophy as Tampa Bay became the first team in NFL history to win the Super Bowl at their home stadium, ending the Kansas City Chiefs' hopes of retaining the title in a 31-9 rout.

    After initially struggling to hit the ground running, Brady enjoyed a stellar maiden season with the Bucs.

    He threw for 4,633 yards and 40 touchdowns with 12 interceptions, his passer rating of 102.2 his highest since his MVP season of 2017 (102.8).

    Only Deshaun Watson and Patrick Mahomes had more completions of 20 yards or more than Brady's 63 as he experienced a revival as a downfield passer in Tampa.

    In the playoffs, he helped the Bucs come through a gauntlet, winning three games on the road to get to the Super Bowl.

    By defeating Mahomes and the Chiefs, the Bucs became the first team to win three games against former Super Bowl MVPs in the same postseason having also seen off Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints and Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers.

    "It's good, it's good. It's good progress," Brady added. "It's rehab. None of that is fun, but looking forward to getting back to real training and stuff, which is hopefully here pretty soon.

    "I'm cool with it. It's just part of what you deal with. Things come up. You deal with them the best way you can, with the best opportunity to improve. I'm definitely feeling a lot better than I did six or seven weeks ago."

    Brady said: "We'll just take it and see how we go and see how things play out over the course of the offseason. A lot of things come up and change over the course of the offseason and we've got a lot of hardworking guys so guys will be anxious to get together and get to work.

    "As soon as I'm ready to throw, that will be really important for me. That's always a big part of my preparation -- actually doing what my job is."

  • European Super League: Unforgiveable, betrayed and selfish – Chelsea, Spurs & Man Utd Supporters' Trusts slam breakaway plans European Super League: Unforgiveable, betrayed and selfish – Chelsea, Spurs & Man Utd Supporters' Trusts slam breakaway plans

    The Supporters' Trusts of Chelsea, Tottenham, Manchester United and Arsenal slammed the announcement of a breakaway competition to rival UEFA's Champions League, the European Super League (ESL).

    Chelsea, Tottenham, United and Arsenal are among the 12 teams confirmed to form the new Super League, which also includes Premier League rivals Liverpool and Manchester City, as well as LaLiga trio Real Madrid, Barcelona, Atletico Madrid and Serie A's Juventus, Inter and Milan.

    Despite significant opposition from UEFA, the respective leagues and the UK Government, and widespread condemnation, the ESL's plans were confirmed on Sunday.

    It has been met with strong criticism, with Chelsea Supporters' Trust releasing a damning statement in response.

    "They say expect the unexpected, but today the Chelsea Supporters' Trust [CST], our members and football supporters across the world have experienced the ultimate betrayal," the statement read.

    "This is a decision of greed to line the pockets of those at the top and it has been made with no consideration for the loyal supporters, our history, our future of the future of football in this country.

    "It is likely that this proposal with never come into existence, however, it speaks volumes that [Chelsea] are prepared to risk our existence in the Premier League and the FA Cup.

    "The CST has held extensive talks with CFC over the past few weeks regarding various issues and there has been no mention of his secretive proposal. The CST and its members demand answers. This is unforgiveable. Enough is enough."

    Arsenal Supporters' Trust tweeted: "The death of Arsenal as a sporting institution."

    Tottenham Supporters' Trust issued a powerful statement, saying: "Tottenham Hotspur was the first British club to win a European trophy. We blazed a trail that caught the imagination of fans everywhere. Yesterday, the current Board of THFC betrayed the club, its history and the magic that makes this game so special when they put their name to a statement announcing the formation of a breakaway European Super League.

    "This statement, signed by self-appointed 'leading clubs', was put out late on a Sunday night. It was made not only after no consultation with supporters, but in the face of clearly stated opposition to key parts of the announcement. 
     
    "We have always tried to maintain a pragmatic position of engagement with the Board of THFC, even under the most trying of circumstances. But enough is enough. The current Board is prepared to risk the club's reputation and its future in the opportunistic pursuit of greed. One of England's most famous clubs could find itself expelled from English league competition. Its players could be banned from international competition. And yet the current owners – mere custodians of a 139-year-old institution – are prepared to risk it all for avarice and self-aggrandisement.
     
    "We demand the Board immediately disassociates itself from the breakaway league. Only then can meaningful discussions about change take place. If the Board does not do this, we will have no choice but to call on new owners prepared to safeguard the past, present and future of our great club to step forward and work with us."

    Manchester United Supporters' Trust added: "A 'Super League' based on a closed shop of self-selected wealthy clubs goes against everything football, and Manchester United, should stand for.

    "To bring forward these proposals without any fan consultation, and in the midst of a global pandemic when people should be pulling together not serving their own selfish interests, just adds insult to injury."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.