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Live Reporting

Thomas Mallows

All times stated are UK

  1. Goodbye

    That's all from this live page - thank you for all your tweets and texts, had a huge response this morning.

    Here are some of today's headlines:

    Don't forget to stick with the BBC Sport website for live text coverage of tonight's two Premier League games - you can find that by heading right over here.

    But, for now, it's goodbye.

  2. Watch: Villa Covid outbreak a warning - Smith

    Here's a clip from Dean Smith's news conference this morning where the Villa boss said the "uncontrollable" coronavirus outbreak which caused two of his side's league games to be postponed is a warning to other clubs.

    Video content

    Video caption: Smith speaks about Villa's 'uncontrollable' coronavirus outbreak
  3. Aguero out, Laporte could return

    Man City v Aston Villa (Wed, 18:00 GMT)

    Manchester City

    Pep Guardiola will still be without Sergio Aguero against Aston Villa tomorrow because the Argentine is still self-isolating as a close contact of someone who has tested positive for Covid-19.

    "Sergio is not ready for tomorrow. He is still isolating. I don't know (for how long)," Guardiola said.

    "We need Aguero, we miss him. The numbers speak for themselves, the best striker in our history.

    "He can win games himself and for a long time he is not with us but we have not sat here complaining but moved forward with the players that we have and found alternatives."

    When asked whether Aymeric Laporte is fit enough to return, the City boss added: "Hopefully. That would be good news. We need him.

    "We cannot play with just (John) Stones and Ruben (Dias). We need Nathan (Ake) and Eric (Garcia). We need Laporte."

  4. Flick responds to Alaba exit talk

    Bayern Munich boss Hansi Flick would not give much away when asked about the future of David Alaba.

    Bayern withdrew a contract offer for Alaba in November after talks dragged on for months, reportedly over the player's annual salary.

    Reports in the Spanish press this morning suggested the Austria international had agreed to deal to sign for Real Madrid in the summer.

    "These are things that are always possible," Flick said of a potential Alaba move. "I honestly say that I have not yet heard anything from him.

    "Hope dies last but obviously I know there is a certain direction. That would be a change for the team, no doubt. But what is important is that he remains as focused as against Freiburg [last weekend]."

    "We know that in football changes are possible and that after a season changes can take place. The only thing we can do for now is wait ad see what happens."

    David Alaba
  5. BreakingRiise named interim England boss

    Norway great Hege Riise is to take charge of England on a temporary basis after Phil Neville's departure as manager, the Football Association have confirmed.

    Riise will be assisted by former Canada international Rhian Wilkinson at the Lionesses training camp in February.

    Former midfielder Riise won 188 Norway caps and is considered one of the best players of her generation.

    She won the 1993 European Championship, the World Cup in 1995 and Olympic gold in 2000.

    After retiring as a player, Riise moved into club management in Norway and also coached the country's under-23 side before spending three years as USA assistant manager from 2009.

    She then joined Norwegian club LSK Kvinner in 2012 - becoming head coach in 2017 - as they won six successive titles between 2014 and 2019, while also reaching the 2018-19 Champions League quarter-finals.

    View more on twitter
  6. Pep expecting 'the best' from Aston Villa

    Man City v Aston Villa (Wed, 18:00GMT)

    Simon Stone

    BBC Sport

    Aston Villa will play their first game since 1 Janauary tomorrow - their side in the defeat by Liverpool in the FA Cup was a youth team - after their recent spate of positive coronavirus tests.

    However, Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola is not expecting an easy time of it at the Etihad Stadium tomorrow.

    "We are expecting them to be at their best," he said.

    "I don’t know the situation, my only wish if for them to be healthy.

    "But we have to be ready to play their best team and we have to create problems for them."

  7. Barca to appeal against Messi ban

    Barcelona say the club will appeal against the two-match ban given to Lionel Messi for his red card against Athletic Bilbao.

    Messi was sent off for the first time in his Barca career for appearing to hit out at Bilbao forward Asier Villalibre in the closing stages of the Spanish Super Cup Final on Sunday.

    View more on twitter
  8. Straightforward question, simple answer

    Man City v Aston Villa (Wed, 18:00 GMT)

    Simon Stone

    BBC Sport

    Pep Guardiola ruled striker Sergio Aguero out of his side to play Aston Villa tomorrow as he is still isolating after a positive coronavirus test.

    Aguero has only made nine appearances since injuring his knee in June.

    Today he was asked if he was considering signing a striking reinforcement in January.


    Not really anywhere to go in that line of questioning.

  9. Mitrovic fit for Cottagers

    Fulham v Man Utd (Wed, 20:15 GMT)


    Fulham boss Scott Parker says striker Aleksandar Mitrovic is fit for tomorrow's game against Manchester United.

    "Mitro is fit now," said Parker. "He got a knock vs QPR in his hamstring. He’ll be back for United and we’ll go from there.

    "Terence Kongolo picked up a little bit of a knock, but nothing too serious. He’s the only one really on the injury front."

  10. Post update

    Fulham v Man Utd (Wed, 20:15GMT)

    Manchester United

    Solskjaer would not go into details about possible outgoings this month, with Jesse Lingard among those linked with a move away from Old Trafford.

    The Red Devils boss also says 18-year-old Amad Diallo is not far away from making his debut for the club after joining from Atalanta at the start of the month.

    "I don’t want to go into individuals. We could allow one or two to go out but one of our advantages is having a deep squad so we don’t want to give our advantage away by easing off on our players," he said.

    On the impact of Diallo: "He's been very good. He makes a difference in training, which is remarkable at his age.

    "He needs to settle into the physical part of the Premier League, but I cant see it being too long before he is in the squad.

    "He's definitely settled down well, the players have taken to him and he's a very good character, a bright smiley boy who works really hard."

    Amad Diallo at Man Utd training
  11. Parker to work 'relentlessly' in 'difficult' window

    Fulham v Man Utd (Wed, 20:15 GMT)


    Fulham boss Scott Parker says he wants to add forward players to his squad this month, but didn't sound overly optimistic of doing so.

    "It’s a difficult window [January]. Time isn’t on our side," he said.

    "We’re light in forward areas. We only have one striker in the building in Mitrovic, Kamara can play there, but we understand where we are a bit light.

    "Whatever the case is we will work relentlessly hard to improve our attacking play to get on the right end of results."

  12. OGS enjoying life as Man Utd boss

    Fulham v Man Utd (Wed, 20:15 GMT)

    Simon Stone

    BBC Sport

    Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been under a lot of pressure as Manchester United manager but now is a good moment for the Norwegian.

    United are 12 games unbeaten in the Premier League, which matches their record from when Solskjaer initially took over and if they win at Fulham tomorrow will retain their place at the top of the table.

    "Of course I am enjoying it," he said. "I wouldn’t do it otherwise.

    "I don’t enjoy leaving players out. It is hard for big games. It is difficult to tell them they are not in a job on Sunday and then they are back in one on Monday. But that is part of what I love as well, working with human beings."

  13. Man Utd waiting on Covid test results

    Fulham v Man Utd (Wed, 20:15 GMT)

    Simon Stone

    BBC Sport

    I sensed a little bit of irritation from Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer today about the fact he is still waiting for his side's coronavirus results 30 hours after they had their tests.

    He has already ruled defenders Brandon Williams and Phil Jones out of tomorrow's trip to Fulham but doesn't know who else is available.

  14. 'No chance' Fernandes is tired - Solskjaer

    Fulham v Man Utd (Wed, 20:15 GMT)

    Manchester United

    Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has dismissed suggestions Bruno Fernandes is tired and needs a rest.

    "His form is very good, he's just been voted player of the month. He's not tired, no chance.

    "He is one of the players who covers the ground in every game. He's very good at recovering and recharging his batteries. If he had scored with his free-kick on Sunday he would have been lauded as the best player in Premier League. He has been immense. If I ask him there is absolutely no chance he will say he is tired.

    "He is expected to create and score goals. Sometimes the fine margins are against him. He is always on the verge of creating something. That is the position I want him in. That is what he has been told to do. I want him to do that."

  15. Solskjaer on 'tough' Fulham challenge

    Fulham v Man Utd (Wed, 20:15 GMT)

    Manchester United

    Let's hear from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer now, who starts with some nice words about Fulham, whose loss to Chelsea on Saturday was a first defeat in seven games.

    "They have had a very good turnaround from slow start," said Solskjaer. "They have made some very good signings and are very well coached. They trust their own team shape. One of hardest teams to break down.

    "They are well structured on and off the ball. They have players who can make a difference. It will be another tough game."

  16. Henderson becomes NHS Charities Together champion

    Jordan Henderson, already a leader on and off the pitch for Liverpool, has taken on a new role - NHS Charities Together champion.

    The Reds captain explains to BBC Breakfast's Sally Nugent why taking on the role "means an awful lot".

    Henderson helped bring Premier League players together during the first lockdown to help support the NHS tackle coronavirus.

    Video content

    Video caption: Henderson speaks to BBC Breakfast about becoming NHS Charities Together champion
  17. Get Involved

    #bbcfootball or text 81111 (UK only)

    SMS Message: A response to Mark from Chester at 12:25. As an Everton fan, I don't think we need to be talked about in the title race because we're nowhere near. Carlo has improved players, found different ways to win and transformed our away form, but ultimately we're nowhere near the quality of City/Liverpool. However, it frustrates me when Leicester and Spurs are touted as title contenders, because neither are they. Let the pundits talk, and if we can quietly finish fourth then that's a heck of a season. from Chris, London
    Chris, London
    SMS Message: If Leicester win tonight, they go top of the league. Are people sleeping on their chances to win the league again? from Sam Farquhar
    Sam Farquhar
  18. Man Utd glass half full or empty?

    Fulham v Man Utd (Wed, 20:15 GMT)

    Simon Stone

    BBC Sport

    As always seems to be the case with Manchester United, Sunday's draw at Liverpool is being assessed in two different ways.

    It was either an excellent away point at the Premier League champions and proof of continued progress or it was two points dropped against weakened opposition which handed the Premier League title initiative to Manchester City.

    Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is due to face the media again shortly to look ahead to tomorrow's trip to Fulham.

    Nothing other than a win at Craven Cottage will do if United are to remain top of the table.

  19. Coming up...

    It's nearly Premier League news conference time again.

    Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is due to speak to the media shortly. We will also hear from Pep Guardiola and Scott Parker later this afternoon.

  20. Crawley training ground closed

    Simon Stone

    BBC Sport

    Crawley's training ground is now closed following a Covid outbreak that led to the postponement of tonight's League Two match against Stevenage.

    The club are due to travel to Bournemouth in the FA Cup on Saturday. As per previous cases in third round, the Football Association will be working with the club to see if it is possible for them to play against Bournemouth with younger players, as Derby and Aston Villa did, or if, like Shrewsbury, they are just unable to fulfil the game, in which case it would be a matter for the Professional Game Board to decide what happens next.