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The Guardian - page 70

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Ronald Koeman’s agent says Dutchman has agreed terms with Everton

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• ‘We have reached an agreement with Everton. Now it is up to the clubs’
• Ronald Koeman has one year left on his contract as Southampton manager

Ronald Koeman has agreed a deal with Everton to become their new manager, his agent has reportedly told Dutch media. The agent Rob Jansen said, according to the popular Voetbal International website, that it was now down to Southampton and Everton to agree a compensation package for the Dutchman, who has a year remaining on his contract at St Mary’s.

Manuel Pellegrini, Unai Emery and Frank de Boer were all linked with the Everton job which became vacant when Roberto Martínez was sacked last month.

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Everton in talks with Southampton to approach Ronald Koeman

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• Dutchman’s agent confirms clubs are in contact over potential move
• Southampton could be due compensation if Koeman leaves

Everton are in talks with Southampton over an approach to make Ronald Koeman their next manager, with the Dutchman now waiting to be granted permission to discuss terms over a potential move to Goodison Park.

As revealed by the Guardian last month, the former Holland international defender was earmarked as the first choice to succeed Roberto Martínez by Farhad Moshiri, Everton’s new major shareholder. The initial suggestions were that Koeman, who joined Southampton from Feyenoord in 2014, was not interested in moving to Merseyside despite having only one year of his contract at St Mary’s remaining.

Related: Ronald Koeman urges Southampton to show ambition as contract talks loom

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Everton in talks with Southampton after approach for Ronald Koeman

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• Dutchman’s agent confirms clubs are in contact over potential move
• Southampton could be due compensation if Koeman leaves

Everton are in talks with Southampton over an approach to make Ronald Koeman their next manager, with the Dutchman now waiting to be granted permission to discuss terms over a potential move to Goodison Park.

As revealed by the Guardian last month, the former Holland international defender was earmarked as the first choice to succeed Roberto Martínez by Farhad Moshiri, Everton’s new major shareholder. The initial suggestions were that Koeman, who joined Southampton from Feyenoord in 2014, would not be interested in moving to Merseyside despite only having one year of his contract at St Mary’s remaining.

Related: Ronald Koeman urges Southampton to show ambition as contract talks loom

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Séamus Coleman says Republic of Ireland show the benefit of hard work

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The flying Everton full-back has become a key part of the Republic’s Euro 2016 squad after missing out four years ago

Séamus Coleman’s story of late takes in personal and collective frustration at Everton while for the Republic of Ireland he has associated the European Championship with more of the same.

Four years ago, Coleman was omitted from the Ireland squad that made an ill-fated appearance in Poland and Ukraine because the manager at the time, Giovanni Trapattoni, did not trust him. The Italian likes his full-backs to defend first and foremost; Coleman, then 23, always felt the need to bomb forward.

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Romelu Lukaku fuels speculation that he will leave Everton

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• Belgium striker has been linked with a return to Chelsea
• ‘In my head I know where I want to go. You will know when it is concluded’

Romelu Lukaku has admitted he is expecting to leave Everton this summer “and knows where he wants to go”.

Speculation over the Belgium striker’s future has been mounting, with his former club Chelsea interested in bringing him back to Stamford Bridge. Last week, Lukaku’s father Roger revealed that he would like the 23-year-old to move to either Manchester United or Bayern Munich, adding that he expected the deal to be struck before the start of Euro 2016.

Related: Louis van Gaal arrives at Manchester United training ground as end looms

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Romelu Lukaku’s father predicts striker will leave Everton this summer

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• Roger Lukaku says Premier League club want £65m to sell star striker
• Bayern Munich or Manchester United said to be his preferred destination

Romelu’s Lukaku’s father believes the Everton striker will have left the club before the start of the European Championships, with Bayern Munich or Manchester United his preferred destination.

The 23-year-old scored 25 goals for Everton last season, although he struggled for form and fitness in 2016 and only found the net three times in the Premier League.

Related: Phil Jagielka warns Everton squad could be severely depleted by summer exits

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Phil Jagielka warns Everton squad could be severely depleted by summer exits

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• Defender anticipates double-figure departures from Goodison
• Jagielka: Roberto Martínez’s successor could face major rebuilding work

Phil Jagielka has warned Everton face upheaval beyond the manager’s position this summer, with Roberto Martínez’s successor having to deal with an exodus of established players.

Related: Everton’s plans to move from Goodison Park to Walton Hall Park abandoned

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Everton’s plans to move from Goodison Park to Walton Hall Park abandoned

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• Everton now considering alternative brownfield sites for new stadium
• Council blames lack of retail investment in ‘ambitious’ scheme

Everton’s plans to relocate from Goodison Park to a new stadium on nearby Walton Hall Park have been scrapped.

The scheme, Everton’s third attempt to move from its historic Goodison home in recent years, has been beset by controversy with local residents campaigning against a stadium, retail and housing development on the park. Everton’s chief executive, Robert Elstone, and Liverpool’s mayor, Joe Anderson, were also involved in a public dispute last year over the lack of progress on the Walton Hall Park plans.

Related: Premier League: 10 talking points from (almost) the final day of the season

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Arsenal finish second after Tottenham collapse: Premier League clockwatch – as it happened

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Tottenham were humiliated against 10-man Newcastle, while Arsenal cruised to victory over Aston Villa to finish above their north London rivals in the table

Thanks for reading, thanks for your company this season. See you for the Euros. And The FA Cup. And the Champions League final. And the Europa League final. And whenever Manchester United v Bournemouth is played.

In the meantime, after Leicester’s incredible season, here’s something to read on your way home – some other incredibly unlikely football bets to come off:

Related: The most unlikely football bet to come off

Related: Controlled explosion at Old Trafford after Manchester United abandon final game

Related: Danny Drinkwater’s late goal earns champions Leicester a final point at Chelsea

At Chelsea, John Terry has told the club’s supporters “I want to be here for the rest of my career”, adding that he wants to stay. He doesn’t say whether he’s going to though.

John Terry: "I want to stay: the club knows that, the fans know that. I want to stay." Abramovich applauding up in the stand.

Related: Georginio Wijnaldum leads Newcastle in astonishing rout of Tottenham

Related: Southampton seal Europa League spot after beating Crystal Palace

Related: Arsenal finish second as Olivier Giroud hat-trick sees off Aston Villa

Related: Manchester City draw at Swansea City to all-but ensure top-four finish

Related: Mame Biram Diouf strikes late as Stoke dent West Ham’s European ambitions

Related: Everton end season on a high with 3-0 win against Norwich City

Related: Flores’ last game as Watford manager ends in draw with Sunderland

Related: Jordon Ibe’s Liverpool wonder goal earns a point at West Bromwich Albion

Apologies – a foolish error. Grimsby are leading Forest Green 2-0 at half time (not the other way round) in the National League playoff final. And I’m an idiot.

Here’s what happened at Old Trafford earlier:

West Ham could still play Europa League football, of course. If Manchester United beat Crystal Palace in the FA Cup final a Europa League place filters down to seventh. If Palace win they are in the Europa League at the group stage.

Here’s the latest Premier League table – but it’s one that could still change after the Manchester United v Bournemouth match is finally played. Leicester win the title by 10 points, Arsenal finish above Spurs and Manchester City will be in the Champions League next year.

West Ham finish seventh, Stoke ninth.

West Ham launch a last ball into the box from a free-kick, deep into injury time. The ball in is won by Randolph, the goalkeeper who had come up from the back. He heads just wide.

Into the last minute at the Britannia, which is the last time we will be able to say that. Stoke 2-1 West Ham currently

Watford 2-2 Sunderland: Sanchez Flores finishes with a draw.

Southampton 4-1 Crystal Palace – Southampton move into fifth but may be knocked out of it by Manchester United. Nevertheless, they have secured Europa League football for next season even if they end up in sixth.

Tottenham finish third, Arsenal finish above them in second. Manchester City secure Champions League football.

Chelsea 1-1 Leicester

Arsenal 4-0 Aston Villa

Oh, Spurs.

Spurs ❤️

Forest Green are losing 2-0 to Grimsby at Wembley, at half-time in the National League playoff final.

The European dream could be over for West Ham

That caps a wonderfully cool performance from Southampton.

Manchester City are set to secure their Champions League spotfollow the latest with Daniel Harris.

Related: Swansea City v Manchester City: Premier League final day – live!

At Arsenal, who are leading Villa 3-0, the party has started. St Totteringham’s Day has arrived late this year, but it has arrived nonetheless.

10-man, relegated Newcastle have put five past Spurs. This is ridiculous.

Andros Townsend refused to go off when Benitez tried to sub him, and instead is making his old club pay: he lashes a shot against the post and Aarons follows it up and taps it home.

There has been a controlled explosion at Old Trafford:

Latest update: A controlled explosion has just been carried out within the stadium by bomb disposal experts at Old Trafford. More to follow.

From a Spurs corner, Newcastle break and are two v one on Lloris. Sissoko should score but the Tottenham keeper saves. Tottenham’s heads are down, their spirit broken.

Looks like Tottenham will finish third in a two horse race @tombry

What. A. Goal! A cracker from Drinkwater.

Giroud’s first Premier League hat-trick and that almost certainly seals second for Arsenal.

Speroni gets a hand to the ball, but Bertrand puts Southampton firmly into fifth place.

Does that clinch second for Arsenal?

There’s all manner of chaos in the Stoke box, with roughly half of each side on the floor in a tangle. The ball finally breaks to West Ham’s Emenike who blazes over. A moment later, there’s a goalmouth scramble and Given knocks the ball off the line.

A massive dive earns Newcastle a penalty, which they convert. A shocking penalty decision, but Spurs are back in trouble.

Kyle Walker has been subbed after that appalling challenge from Mitrovic. Could be a tactical, but would be a surprise if he wasn’t injured after that.

For West Ham, Valencia has just headed over the bar from close range. Stoke 1-1 West Ham

Arsenal are still dominating possession against Villa, and are still failing to get the ball anywhere near the goal. They lead 1-0, while Tottenham are 2-1 down against 10-man Newcastle with 70-or-so minutes played.

The latest at Stoke 1-1 West Ham: Andy Carroll looks like he may have been subbed off with an injury.

Sakho and Carroll are off, Valencia and Emenike are the strikers as West Ham look for a second…

Mitrovic sent off for Newcastle against Tottenham after a collision with Kyle Walker. An absolutely appalling challenge from the Newcastle striker, studs up and a real leg-breaker against the Spurs man. He goes off effing and jeffing but should have no complaints.

An absolute rocket!

Southampton currently sitting pretty in fifth.

It’s a soft penalty, as Matic hits the deck having played for it. Fabregas makes no mistake from the spot though.

Hmm, Hiddink is playing the right back Azpilicueta at centre back. He’s playing the left-fotted centre back Tomori at right back. Chelsea supporters have their heads in their hands. Safe to say Chelsea fans haven’t enjoyed Guus Hiddink’s second spell in charge at Stamford Bridge as much as his first. But …

Troubling news from Old Trafford:

Stewards here definitely saying device, including phone, was strapped to gas pipe. Not confirmed. MUFC say their own security found it.

Are Spurs back in this? Lamela scores from an incredibly tight angle.

At Stamford Bridge, Hiddink brings on Fikayo Tomori for Ivanovic, his final act as the Chelsea (interim) manager. Still 0-0 there, a very pre-season atmosphere inside the ground.

Penalty for Watford against Sunderland. Tory Deeney with the chance to level the match … and he does! A cool finish.

Imbula levels at Stoke, which could be significant in the race for Europa League spots.

Rondon nearly puts West Brom 2-1 up against Liverpool, but Rondon thumped a header into the post with Bogdan beaten.

Tottenham are still curiously impotent against Newcastle. However, Arsenal are not exactly dominant against Villa – Giroud has had a couple of chances and taken just one of them. The problem is the same old story: lots of attractive build-up, few efforts on goal.

“Is there an Arsenal fan in the world that doesn’t see Villa getting the draw in the 88th minute. Most likely through a Gunner own goal. #OhArsenal,” hashtags Dominic O’Donnell.

Stoke have been having a real go at West Ham, but West Ham very nearly went 2-0 up with Sakho firing hard at goal. A brilliant save from Shay Given has kept it 1-0.

Hiddink is finally going to do what the Chelsea fans want and play some kids. Tammy Abraham and Ruben Loftus-Cheek coming on against Leicester. Abraham replaces Traore, Loftus-Cheek on for Pedro.

The Martinez effect in action.

Sunderland immediately go back ahead.

No news yet on when the Manchester United v Bournemouth match will be replayed – could be over a week. More details here.

Watford back on level terms against Sunderland.

Around the country, 18 Premier League sides kick off for their final 45 minutes of league football for the season.

Some half-time reading for you, in light of the news from Old Trafford:

Related: The Joy of Six: football abandonments

Arsenal 1-0 Aston Villa

Chelsea 0-0 Leicester

Another goal at the Liberty: find out which way it went here.

With two minutes before half-time, Mane puts the home side ahead.

Half time: Arsenal 1-0 Aston Villa. Arsenal currently second.

Norwich’s Brady drags Lukaku back in the penalty area and the big Belgian goes down. It was a soft challenge but a penalty nonetheless. Baines doesn’t miss.

Fabregas forces Schmeichel into a great save, but a moment later Pedro has the ball in the net for Chelsea against Leicester. The Spaniard is offside though.

Mahrez pings a cross over for Vardy who heads over for a goal kick, a let off for Chelsea.

Tottenham are in trouble, but Arsenal might be helping them out – they’re playing lots of pretty football but without threatening the goal very often.

Rodwell scores his first goal in 14 months and, seconds later, Sunderland have the ball in the net again via Watmore. The goal is disallowed, but probably shouldn’t have been.

Mitrovic powers a header in from, roughly, the penalty spot. Oh Spurs.

Leicester’s Drinkwater smashes a shot at the Chelsea goal, but Ivanovic is there to clear. Chelsea break and Baba crosses for Traore to hit home, but the striker stumbles on the ball and can’t score.

At Arsenal, Wilshere lashes a shot into the side-netting with Villa playing as sloppily as they have done all season.

Schmeichel makes a wonderful save as Chelsea attack, Leicester go straight up the other end and Vardy has a shot saved.

John Terry has been acknowledging the crowd’s support at Stamford Bridge:

Captain. Leader. Legend. (@alibendertv) pic.twitter.com/C2MeTqs2je

In the match itself, Newcastle are looking very solid. Good in defence, probing in attack. Tottenham on course for third, Arsenal second as things stand.

Sunderland fans in prissy mood have hired a plane to fly over St James’ Park. “Auf Wiedersehn Prem, Tyne to go” reads the banner.

On the 26th minute at Stamford Bridge, the Chelsea fans have risen as one to applaud John Terry (who wears number 26). It’s clear they want him to stay, and Chelsea have offered him a one year deal – but have not offered him the same money he is rumoured to have been offered from China.

The top of the Premier League table looks like this currently.

Shaun Wilkinson emails about the scoreline in Newcastle: “And the ‘after the horse has bolted award’ for 2016 goes to Gini Wijnaldum. If that goal had come in literally any of the last 10 games …”

West Ham have started sluggishly but are now ahead.

Reid headed a high corner back into the area, Antonio brought down on his chest – handball? – and drove a low shot in.

Ibe has just run half the length of the pitch to score his first Premier League goal.

Details of the goal in Newcastle: Janmaat crosses from the right and Alderweireld could not head the ball out. Newcastle pounced on the ball, working it Wijnaldum, who stroked the ball home.

The Everton goal: McCarthy strode to the edge of the box, then bent the ball past Ruddy from distance.

The new manager bounce?

Oh, Tottenham.

Here’s the full story on the abandoment/postponement at Old Trafford:

Related: Manchester United abandon final Premier League game after security alert leads to Old Trafford evacuation

More news to make people feel old:

1 – WBA's Jonathan Leko is the first player born in 1999 to assist a Premier League goal. Party.

There’s a funny old atmosphere at Stamford Bridge: the Leicester fans have demanded the Chelsea fans “Stand up for the champions” and, oddly, they have complied. All very friendly.

Jacob Steinberg is at Stoke v West Ham:

West Ham are looking a tad leggy in midfield. Sloppy start from both sides.

Rondon is played in and, from a tight angle, beats Bogdan at his near post.

Vardy whistles a shot across the face of the Chelsea goal from distance, Courtois watches it go wide.

Norwich have started brightly against Everton, but Lukaku has had the first chance of the game, smashing one at Ruddy in the Norwich goal, who turns the ball around the post for a corner.

At Newcastle v Tottenham: Andros Townsend plays Janmaat in, who finds Mitrovic. The striker, under pressure from Alderweireld, misses badly.

So the Premier League season will not finish today. A suspect package has been discovered at Old Trafford forcing the match to be rescheduled and the ground evacuated.

The Manchester United v Bournemouth match has been abandoned. Details here.

There’s been a goal at the Liberty Stadiumfind out which way it went here.

Giroud puts Arsenal in with a shout of finishing above Tottenham.

At Chelsea v Leicester, Robert Huth is sitting in the press box. The Leicester fans, meanwhile, are singing “We’re staying up!”

The evacuation at Old Trafford has been caused by the discovery of a suspect package. More here.

Caption competition:

“‘Roman; So our cunning master plan to humiliate all those pundit idiots came off. Brilliant!’” hoots Mark Elliot.

Chelsea have lined up to provide Leicester with a guard of honour, with Roman Abramovich applauding Claudio Ranieri with a very fixed grin as he receives a special trophy on the pitch at Stamford Bridge. The Chelsea crowd offer their former manager warm applause.

All round the country, there is clickety-clack sound of studs in tunnels. Players are striding out onto pitches, some of them for the last time. Kick-off minutes away.

Caption competition:

“Ha ha, yes Claudio, I agree. José Mourinho is the devil and I got what I deserved this season for hiring him,” hoots J.R. in Illinois.

Caption competition:

“HE WHO LAUGHS LAST …” bellows Tony Walton.

In July last year, our football editor Marcus Christenson wrote an article suggesting that Claudio Ranieri was likely to get Leicester City relegated from the Premier League. Here’s his apology:

Related: Claudio Ranieri: an apology | Marcus Christenson

Swansea v Manchester City will still kick-off at 3pm, but there will be a 45 minute delay at Old Trafford. Fergie time? Details here.

Caption competition:

“‘Hahaha, that’s my dilly-dong, Roman!’,” hoots someone called, apparently, Mad Vader.

In other news Max Verstappen has won the Spanish Grand Prix. Wow.

There are reports that Old Trafford is being evacuated. Daniel Harris has the details here.

The grand prix in Barcelona is drawing to a close – join Lawrence Ostlere for the last lap here:

Related: F1: Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg crash out of Spanish GP – live!

Caption competition latest: the gist basically being “ha ha ha ha ha!”

“Roman, the funniest, haha, the funniest thing, haha, happened to me, hahaha, after you sacked me before I could win, haha, the league here… it took a while though, so don’t be smiling too much,” hoots Robert Smith.

New of some exits at Arsenal:

Wenger and Sir Chips Keswick confirming the departures of Rosicky, Arteta & Flamini in pieces in the programme today #afc

Could there be a playoff for a Europa League place? Possibly. Here’s how:

West Ham and Liverpool will tie for sixth or seventh place (depending on Southampton’s result) if West Ham lose 1-0 at Stoke and Liverpool win 2-1 at West Brom, or if West Ham lose 2-1 and Liverpool win 3-2 etc. If a Europa League place is at stake, a play-off at a neutral venue will then be required if Liverpool lose to Sevilla.

Related: Which English teams will be contesting what in Europe next season?

Caption competition latest:

“Bwahhh … Ha! Ha hahahahaha! … wait … wait … [pauses for breath] Bwaaaaaah! HA HA HA!” reports John Pitre.

North of the border, Celtic have spanked Motherwell 7-0. And here’s one for a future pub quiz: The 16-year-old debutant substitute Jack Aitchison – the youngest player to play for the Hoops – scored the seventh with his first touch. Aitchison was born on 5 March, 2000 which is enough to make me feel very, very old.

Caption competition: email tom.bryant@theguardian.com

The crowd at Stamford Bridge have warmly applauded the Leicester City players as they stroll out onto the pitch to warm-up. Which is nice. Meanwhile, some news on Theo Walcott’s hamstring from Dave Hytner:

Slight hamstring for Walcott, apparently … Not in the 18 #afc

Rafa Benitez is talking about how the Newcastle fans have had an impact on whether or not he will stay at the club: “They have already made me think about the future. When I came I knew about the size of the club but I was really impressed with the fans. So I am considering my options because of the love from the fans. The main thing is to be sure everyone wants the same thing.”

There will be no title decider today, of course, but that’s no reason not to spend a little time with Rob Smyth’s Joy of Six on that very subject from a few years back.

Related: The Joy of Six: title deciders | Rob Smyth

In the League One playoff, Milwall have beaten Bradford 3-1. Plymouth host Portsmouth in the second leg of their League Two play-off semi-final with the scores level at 2-2 alter on while Forest Green and Grimsby go head-to-head in the National League play-off final at 4pm at Wembley.

Chelsea then, playing for nothing and with talented youngsters galore, opt not to give those youngsters the chance to get some game time and instead play the same old underperforming lot who will all be off the Euros and could do with a break. Sunderland, with nothing to play for anymore, have played a team full of kids. Big Sam to Stamford Bridge? Samford Bridge?

Newcastle: Darlow, Janmaat, Taylor, Mbemba, Dummett, Tiote, Colback, Townsend, Sissoko, Wijnaldum, Mitrovic.
Subs: Cisse, De Jong, Shelvey, Aarons, Perez, Woodman, Sterry.

It was 12 years ago today that Claudio Ranieri took charge of his last match as the Chelsea manager. For many other men – me included – the chance to walk back out on that pitch having taking the title from your former employers would be an opportunity to stand in the centre circle and flick Vs at all four stands. But Ranieri is, perhaps disappointingly, not like that. Chelsea will provide Leicester with a guard of honour and it is just the final touch in a wonderful season for the visitors that they will take their deserved plaudits at the home of the former champions.

In theory, Arsenal have the easier task today. Aston Villa, manager-less, relegated and without even giving the impression of putting up much of a fight have won just six points away from home all season and are dead bottom of the away form table.

Tottenham, however, face Newcastle at St James’ Park where the home side have been reasonable of late. Newcastle have lost one of their last six at home, and may well have something to prove in front of their own fans. There’s a sense of optimism around the club that they can keep Rafael Benítez in the dugout and so Tottenham’s task may well be harder than their north London rivals’.

What do Tottenham fans feel about their season?Pochettino has done wonders”, but the midfield lacks cover and, if Harry Kane get injured or loses form, they’re in trouble. What do Arsenal fans feel about their season: “We’ve blown it, big time”.

Aston Villa fans are in particularly angry mood, while Chelsea fans believe the club has been invaded by body snatchers. There’s plenty more below:

Related: Premier League 2015-16 fans’ verdicts part one: Arsenal to Manchester United

Related: Premier League 2015-16 fans’ verdicts part two: Newcastle to West Ham

The bottom’s done and dusted, there’s plenty of jockeying for position to be done between 11th and 16th – though it all has the feel of bald men fighting for combs.

Chelsea, Stoke and Swansea can duke it out for mid-table obscurity and then it’s the fight for (or against) Europa League qualification.

Related: Which English teams will be contesting what in Europe next season?

Continue reading…

Everton end season on a high with 3-0 win against Norwich City

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Tim Howard signed off with a clean sheet – the first Everton have kept at home since 3 February – but it was his predication that Roberto Martínez’s successor would be “sitting on a goldmine” of talent that left the greatest impression at Goodison Park. Teenage debutants were to the fore as Everton ended a tumultuous week and season with a convincing win against Norwich City.

Tom Davies and Kieran Dowell were given full debuts by David Unsworth, the under-21s coach asked to take temporary charge following Martínez’s dismissal on Thursday, and excelled as Everton won for only the second time in 11 matches. Jonjoe Kenny made it a trio of academy graduates to impress when he came off from the substitutes’ bench. James McCarthy, Leighton Baines and Kevin Mirallas were the beneficiaries on the scoresheet.

Related: Rafael Benítez could talk to Everton but is negotiating with Newcastle

Continue reading…

Tottenham and Arsenal battle for second: Premier League clockwatch – live!

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Leicester’s Drinkwater smashes a shot at the Chelsea goal, but Ivanovic is there to clear. Chelsea break and Baba crosses for Traore to hit home, but the striker stumbles on the ball and can’t score.

At Arsenal, Wilshere lashes a shot into the side-netting with Villa playing as sloppily as they have done all season.

Schmeichel makes a wonderful save as Chelsea attack, Leicester go straight up the other end and Vardy has a shot saved.

John Terry has been acknowledging the crowd’s support at Stamford Bridge:

Captain. Leader. Legend. (@alibendertv) pic.twitter.com/C2MeTqs2je

In the match itself, Newcastle are looking very solid. Good in defence, probing in attack. Tottenham on course for third, Arsenal second as things stand.

Sunderland fans in prissy mood have hired a plane to fly over St James’ Park. “Auf Wiedersehn Prem, Tyne to go” reads the banner.

On the 26th minute at Stamford Bridge, the Chelsea fans have risen as one to applaud John Terry (who wears number 26). It’s clear they want him to stay, and Chelsea have offered him a one year deal – but have not offered him the same money he is rumoured to have been offered from China.

The top of the Premier League table looks like this currently.

Shaun Wilkinson emails about the scoreline in Newcastle: “And the ‘after the horse has bolted award’ for 2016 goes to Gini Wijnaldum. If that goal had come in literally any of the last 10 games …”

West Ham have started sluggishly but are now ahead.

Reid headed a high corner back into the area, Antonio brought down on his chest – handball? – and drove a low shot in.

Ibe has just run half the length of the pitch to score his first Premier League goal.

Details of the goal in Newcastle: Janmaat crosses from the right and Alderweireld could not head the ball out. Newcastle pounced on the ball, working it Wijnaldum, who stroked the ball home.

The Everton goal: McCarthy strode to the edge of the box, then bent the ball past Ruddy from distance.

The new manager bounce?

Oh, Tottenham.

Here’s the full story on the abandoment/postponement at Old Trafford:

Related: Manchester United abandon final Premier League game after security alert leads to Old Trafford evacuation

More news to make people feel old:

1 – WBA's Jonathan Leko is the first player born in 1999 to assist a Premier League goal. Party.

There’s a funny old atmosphere at Stamford Bridge: the Leicester fans have demanded the Chelsea fans “Stand up for the champions” and, oddly, they have complied. All very friendly.

Jacob Steinberg is at Stoke v West Ham:

West Ham are looking a tad leggy in midfield. Sloppy start from both sides.

Rondon is played in and, from a tight angle, beats Bogdan at his near post.

Vardy whistles a shot across the face of the Chelsea goal from distance, Courtois watches it go wide.

Norwich have started brightly against Everton, but Lukaku has had the first chance of the game, smashing one at Ruddy in the Norwich goal, who turns the ball around the post for a corner.

At Newcastle v Tottenham: Andros Townsend plays Janmaat in, who finds Mitrovic. The striker, under pressure from Alderweireld, misses badly.

So the Premier League season will not finish today. A suspect package has been discovered at Old Trafford forcing the match to be rescheduled and the ground evacuated.

The Manchester United v Bournemouth match has been abandoned. Details here.

There’s been a goal at the Liberty Stadiumfind out which way it went here.

Giroud puts Arsenal in with a shout of finishing above Tottenham.

At Chelsea v Leicester, Robert Huth is sitting in the press box. The Leicester fans, meanwhile, are singing “We’re staying up!”

The evacuation at Old Trafford has been caused by the discovery of a suspect package. More here.

Caption competition:

“‘Roman; So our cunning master plan to humiliate all those pundit idiots came off. Brilliant!’” hoots Mark Elliot.

Chelsea have lined up to provide Leicester with a guard of honour, with Roman Abramovich applauding Claudio Ranieri with a very fixed grin as he receives a special trophy on the pitch at Stamford Bridge. The Chelsea crowd offer their former manager warm applause.

All round the country, there is clickety-clack sound of studs in tunnels. Players are striding out onto pitches, some of them for the last time. Kick-off minutes away.

Caption competition:

“Ha ha, yes Claudio, I agree. José Mourinho is the devil and I got what I deserved this season for hiring him,” hoots J.R. in Illinois.

Caption competition:

“HE WHO LAUGHS LAST …” bellows Tony Walton.

In July last year, our football editor Marcus Christenson wrote an article suggesting that Claudio Ranieri was likely to get Leicester City relegated from the Premier League. Here’s his apology:

Related: Claudio Ranieri: an apology | Marcus Christenson

Swansea v Manchester City will still kick-off at 3pm, but there will be a 45 minute delay at Old Trafford. Fergie time? Details here.

Caption competition:

“‘Hahaha, that’s my dilly-dong, Roman!’,” hoots someone called, apparently, Mad Vader.

In other news Max Verstappen has won the Spanish Grand Prix. Wow.

There are reports that Old Trafford is being evacuated. Daniel Harris has the details here.

The grand prix in Barcelona is drawing to a close – join Lawrence Ostlere for the last lap here:

Related: F1: Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg crash out of Spanish GP – live!

Caption competition latest: the gist basically being “ha ha ha ha ha!”

“Roman, the funniest, haha, the funniest thing, haha, happened to me, hahaha, after you sacked me before I could win, haha, the league here… it took a while though, so don’t be smiling too much,” hoots Robert Smith.

New of some exits at Arsenal:

Wenger and Sir Chips Keswick confirming the departures of Rosicky, Arteta & Flamini in pieces in the programme today #afc

Could there be a playoff for a Europa League place? Possibly. Here’s how:

West Ham and Liverpool will tie for sixth or seventh place (depending on Southampton’s result) if West Ham lose 1-0 at Stoke and Liverpool win 2-1 at West Brom, or if West Ham lose 2-1 and Liverpool win 3-2 etc. If a Europa League place is at stake, a play-off at a neutral venue will then be required if Liverpool lose to Sevilla.

Related: Which English teams will be contesting what in Europe next season?

Caption competition latest:

“Bwahhh … Ha! Ha hahahahaha! … wait … wait … [pauses for breath] Bwaaaaaah! HA HA HA!” reports John Pitre.

North of the border, Celtic have spanked Motherwell 7-0. And here’s one for a future pub quiz: The 16-year-old debutant substitute Jack Aitchison – the youngest player to play for the Hoops – scored the seventh with his first touch. Aitchison was born on 5 March, 2000 which is enough to make me feel very, very old.

Caption competition: email tom.bryant@theguardian.com

The crowd at Stamford Bridge have warmly applauded the Leicester City players as they stroll out onto the pitch to warm-up. Which is nice. Meanwhile, some news on Theo Walcott’s hamstring from Dave Hytner:

Slight hamstring for Walcott, apparently … Not in the 18 #afc

Rafa Benitez is talking about how the Newcastle fans have had an impact on whether or not he will stay at the club: “They have already made me think about the future. When I came I knew about the size of the club but I was really impressed with the fans. So I am considering my options because of the love from the fans. The main thing is to be sure everyone wants the same thing.”

There will be no title decider today, of course, but that’s no reason not to spend a little time with Rob Smyth’s Joy of Six on that very subject from a few years back.

Related: The Joy of Six: title deciders | Rob Smyth

In the League One playoff, Milwall have beaten Bradford 3-1. Plymouth host Portsmouth in the second leg of their League Two play-off semi-final with the scores level at 2-2 alter on while Forest Green and Grimsby go head-to-head in the National League play-off final at 4pm at Wembley.

Chelsea then, playing for nothing and with talented youngsters galore, opt not to give those youngsters the chance to get some game time and instead play the same old underperforming lot who will all be off the Euros and could do with a break. Sunderland, with nothing to play for anymore, have played a team full of kids. Big Sam to Stamford Bridge? Samford Bridge?

Newcastle: Darlow, Janmaat, Taylor, Mbemba, Dummett, Tiote, Colback, Townsend, Sissoko, Wijnaldum, Mitrovic.
Subs: Cisse, De Jong, Shelvey, Aarons, Perez, Woodman, Sterry.

It was 12 years ago today that Claudio Ranieri took charge of his last match as the Chelsea manager. For many other men – me included – the chance to walk back out on that pitch having taking the title from your former employers would be an opportunity to stand in the centre circle and flick Vs at all four stands. But Ranieri is, perhaps disappointingly, not like that. Chelsea will provide Leicester with a guard of honour and it is just the final touch in a wonderful season for the visitors that they will take their deserved plaudits at the home of the former champions.

In theory, Arsenal have the easier task today. Aston Villa, manager-less, relegated and without even giving the impression of putting up much of a fight have won just six points away from home all season and are dead bottom of the away form table.

Tottenham, however, face Newcastle at St James’ Park where the home side have been reasonable of late. Newcastle have lost one of their last six at home, and may well have something to prove in front of their own fans. There’s a sense of optimism around the club that they can keep Rafael Benítez in the dugout and so Tottenham’s task may well be harder than their north London rivals’.

What do Tottenham fans feel about their season?Pochettino has done wonders”, but the midfield lacks cover and, if Harry Kane get injured or loses form, they’re in trouble. What do Arsenal fans feel about their season: “We’ve blown it, big time”.

Aston Villa fans are in particularly angry mood, while Chelsea fans believe the club has been invaded by body snatchers. There’s plenty more below:

Related: Premier League 2015-16 fans’ verdicts part one: Arsenal to Manchester United

Related: Premier League 2015-16 fans’ verdicts part two: Newcastle to West Ham

The bottom’s done and dusted, there’s plenty of jockeying for position to be done between 11th and 16th – though it all has the feel of bald men fighting for combs.

Chelsea, Stoke and Swansea can duke it out for mid-table obscurity and then it’s the fight for (or against) Europa League qualification.

Related: Which English teams will be contesting what in Europe next season?

Continue reading…

Rafael Benítez could talk to Everton but is negotiating with Newcastle

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• ‘Mike Ashley’s keen to talk and I’m really pleased,’ says Newcastle manager
• Benítez’s home is on the Wirral and he could be open to Everton move

Rafa Benítez says there is a good chance he will still be in charge of Newcastle United next season but his future at the newly relegated Tynesiders hinges on two factors: the outcome of talks with Mike Ashley this coming week and a potential approach from Everton.

Although the latter seems unlikely at present, the former Liverpool manager’s family home is on the Wirral and it is understood he could be open to talking to Goodison Park officials to succeed Roberto Martínez.

Related: Sunderland fans plan ‘Auf wiedersehen Prem’ plane taunt of Newcastle

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