With Arsenal still in media lockdown after their latest defeat, let’s take a look at some of the more interesting stories from around the papers.

1Graham Poll thinks kneeling is ‘unsporting behaviour’

Daily Mail 18 April 2018

I turned the Spurs game off last night at halftime as I was bored with it, so I didn’t see either of the goals.

From the papers this morning I see that a Brighton player had the temerity to kneel behind his own wall in an effort to stop Spurs scoring underneath it.

Graham Poll, it seems, thinks this is unsporting behaviour.

“There is nothing specific in the laws of the game,” he writes, “that prevents a player from kneeling behind the wall at a free-kick….

“If a referee deems the action unsporting and not in the spirit of the game, he can tell the player to stand up. It is what I would have said to Knckaert had I been refereeing”


[Daily Mail]

2Sky Sports could lose La Liga games

HULL, ENGLAND - AUGUST 13: Sky Sports presenters Thierry Henry and Jamie Redknapp during the Premier League match between Hull City and Leicester City at KC Stadium on August 13, 2016 in Hull, England. (Photo by Alex Morton/Getty Images)
(Photo by Alex Morton/Getty Images)

It is believed that La Liga have rejected Sky Sport’s latest offer to cover games from Spain’s top league. The offer was said to be in the region of £18m-per-year and is seen as the most important foreign league package for Sky.

BT currently cover Ligue 1 and Serie A and they could come back in to try and challenge Sky for the rights to show La Liga games.

Sky Sports have had the rights for games in Spain for over 20 years.

[Daily Mail]

3Accrington Stanley promoted

ACCRINGTON, ENGLAND - APRIL 17: The players of Accrington Stanley celebrate gaining promotion after the Sky Bet League Two match between Accrington Stanley and Yeovil Town at The Crown Ground on April 17, 2018 in Accrington, England. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

Accrington Stanley beat Yeovil Town 2-0 on Tuesday night to secure promotion to League One.


4Manchester City cleared by court of arbitration of sport

(OLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images)

Manchester City will not face any transfer window sanctions after the CAS sided with them in the case over Benjamin Garré.

Garré’s former club, Velez Sarsfield, had reported City for an unethical approach when the player was still only 15. City signed him just a few days after his 16th birthday.

A statement from Cas on Tuesday confirmed the appeal had been dismissed.

“The appeal filed on 12 December 2016 by Club Atlético Vélez Sarsfield against the decision issued on 24 August 2016 by the single judge of the sub-committee of the Fifa players’ status committee is dismissed and, accordingly, the challenged decision is confirmed.”

City are now expected to spend around £200m in the summer transfer window.

No matter how good Pep Guardiola is as a manager, just as with Jose Mourinho, I would like to see him at a club where he couldn’t spend unlimited amounts of money. Only then would we get a true idea of how much is Pep’s talent and how much is being able to buy whatever players you want.


5Millwall Lionesses

4 May 1997: The Millwall Lionesses celebrate winning Women's FA Cup after beating Wembley Ladies at Upton Park in London, England. Millwall Lionesses won 1-0. \ Mandatory Credit: Mike Hewitt /Allsport
Mike Hewitt /Allsport

Millwall Lionesses are on the verge of going into administration as they struggle to finance the team.

Despite the men’s game being awash with cash, the women’s game is still finding it difficult to support teams that aren’t backed significantly by the men’s team.

Although Millwall men’s team provided funding above what they had budgeted for, the Lionesses are still struggling and will be collecting money in buckets at their next game. They have also launched a crowdfunding campaign after ‘financial discrepancies’ were revealed.

The 1997 FA Cup winners were granted a licence for the new second division in Women’s football. Currently playing in WSL2, Millwall are unbeaten this season.


6Russia charged with racism

France's players line up prior to an international friendly football match between Russia and France at the Saint Petersburg Stadium in Saint Petersburg on March 27, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / FRANCK FIFE

Ahead of the World Cup in Russia this summer, Fifa has charged the hosts with fan racism less than two months before the competition is due to start.

The charge comes after France players were subjected to monkey chants during their 3-1 win in St Petersburg last month.

This comes after Russia themselves revealed they had stopped a plot by far-right football hooligans to disrupt the competition.


7Marcos Alonso charged, Dusan Tadic not

Chelsea's Spanish defender Marcos Alonso (L) rises above Arsenal's Spanish defender Hector Bellerin (C) to score the opening goal during the English Premier League football match between Chelsea and Arsenal at Stamford Bridge in London on February 4, 2017. / AFP / Ian KINGTON /

Just as we all expected, Marcos Alonso has been charged by the FA with violent conduct after his stamp on Southampton’s Shane Long’s leg.

The incident garnered a lot of press coverage, so a charge was expected.

Tadic, meanwhile, who committed two very similar challenges against Arsenal – one on Reiss Nelson less than two minutes into the game and then on Alex Iwobi – was not charged because not only was there not outcry in the media, no journalist saw fit to mention either ‘challenge’ in their match reports.


8Neymar should make World Cup

via @neymarjr

Neymar is expected to return to training on 17 May. Brazil begin their World Cup preparations on 21 May.

The forward picked up a hairline crack in his foot at the end of February.


9Rafa Benitez eyes new deal

Rafa and Arsene

Despite being linked with the Arsenal job, Rafa Benitez is eyeing a new contract at Newcastle.

Asked by Spanish radio if he saw himself at Newcastle for many more seasons, Benitez replied: “Yes, in principal, we are relaxed. I have one more year on my contract and now the board are trying to talk about the future.”

When asked about the Arsenal links, Rafa said, “The fact that you get linked, it is something positive because it makes you proud of your career trajectory.”


10Arsenal want Norwich man for £25m

NORWICH, ENGLAND - JANUARY 06: James Maddison of Norwich City shows appreciation to the fans after the The Emirates FA Cup Third Round match between Norwich City and Chelsea at Carrow Road on January 6, 2018 in Norwich, England. (Photo by James Chance/Getty Images)
Photo by James Chance/Getty Images

Arsenal are reportedly one of six teams in a ‘tug of war’ for the signature of Norwich’s attacking midfielder, James Maddison.

The 21-year-old is valued at around £25m and is also wanted by Tottenham, Everton, Manchester City, Southampton and Brighton.

[Daily Telegraph]

11Darron Gibson facing jail

Irish Times 18 April 2018

Former Manchester United and Everton midfielder, Darron Gibson, is facing a possible jail term after admitting a drink-driving charge for the second time in three years.

Three times over the legal limit, the 30-year-old smashed his Mercedes 4×4 into parked cars on St. Patrick’s Day. This follows on from the incident in 2015 when he hit three cyclists who were fixing a bike on the pavement.

The Republic of Ireland international was told by the magistrate that his actions ‘aggravates it into the custody band.’

Sunderland terminated the midfielder’s contract after he was charged following the crash.

He will be sentenced on 25 May.

[Irish Times]

12News in brief