Ohio State said offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Ryan Day was named the acting head coach for the duration of the investigation. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Managing Editor for DesignOne question was on everyone’s mind heading into Ohio State’s Sept. 1 season opener: Who will be the head coach running out of the tunnel alongside the Buckeyes against Oregon State?After a Board of Trustees meeting scheduled to share the findings of the investigation of Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer neared its 12th hour of deliberation, the answer arrived at Ryan Day — until Sept. 16. In the statement released announcing Meyer’s absence from the team on Aug. 1, Ohio State said offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Ryan Day was named the acting head coach for the duration of the investigation.As a former offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at both the college and the pro level, this is Day’s first opportunity as the head coach of any football program. However, he becomes the acting head coach of a coaching staff with two former head coaches as coordinators, associate head coach and defensive coordinator Greg Schiano and offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson. Both coordinators bring more experience to the coaching staff than Day has, as they each ran Division I programs for several seasons. However, both coordinators have faced controversy in recent years. In November 2017, Schiano initially was set to become the next head coach at the University of Tennessee after helping the Ohio State defense allow an average of 19 points per game. However, with a history of being a graduate assistant and a secondary coach at Penn State from 1990 to 1995, allegations resurfaced about Schiano and fellow assistant coach Jerry Sandusky regarding the latter’s sexual abuse. The Volunteers rescinded their offer, breaking a memorandum of understanding signed by both the university and Schiano. After recording a 26-47 record in six seasons, Wilson was fired as the head coach at Indiana with reports of alleged mistreatment, especially involving injured players. With the stories attached to both Schiano and Wilson, despite the head coaching experience, Day seemed the safer option for a university that was wrapped up in national scrutiny. However, Day’s level of responsibility, even without the change in title, was already increased heading into the 2018 season. After his promotion to the offensive coordinator position in January, Day will lead an offense in the midst of an identity shift: a changing of the guard at quarterback, with redshirt sophomore Dwayne Haskins taking over for quarterback J.T. Barrett and leading an offense with an established running game and veteran receiving corps. Instead of just the offense, Day has been in charge of Ohio State since the start of fall camp at the beginning of August. Despite the loss of Meyer heading into the season opener against Oregon State, the roster remains the same, with players like Associated Press preseason All-American junior defensive end Nick Bosa and sophomore running back J.K. Dobbins. For the short term, the team is the same, with the same expectations for the upcoming season: a Big Ten Championship with a significant chance at a College Football Playoff berth. Now, knowing what Meyer’s status is going into the regular season, Day and the rest of the Ohio State football program will now focus on the short term.
A 77-minute man advantage wasn’t enough for Arsenal to see off Atletico Madrid. Antoine Griezmann punished a moment of reckless defense and Simeone’s men will go home with a priceless away goal.Arsene Wenger couldn’t count on his two winter additions. Mkhitaryan is injured and Aubameyang was ineligible due to having played for Borussia Dortmund. Ospina, Arsenal’s Europa League goalie, was between the posts. Bellerin, Mustafi, Koscielny, Monreal, Xhaka, Wilshere, Ramsey, Ozil, Welbeck and Lacazette completed The Gunners’ starting lineup. Diego Simeone left out the out-of-form Fernando Torres and gave a rare opportunity to Kevin Gameiro to play alongside Antoine Griezmann. Veteran midfielder Gabi and center back Stefan Savic were on the bench as well. Angel Correa was in the starting eleven, as Simeone opted for speed in attack. Saul Niguez, Koke and Thomas Partey was the midfield trio, Lucas Hernandez, Diego Godin, Jose Maria Gimenez and Sime Vrsaljko were the defenders and Jan Oblak was on goal.It was Arsene Wenger’s last European game with his beloved team and the atmosphere at the stadium he helped build was wonderfully unified. It took one minute and 15 seconds for Sime Vrsaljko to receive the first yellow card of the match, as he tripped Welbeck in order to stop a counter attack. Lacazette had a great chance in the 6th minute when Welbeck found him with a magnificent pass. The Frenchman took it first time and missed by a few centimeters. He probably should’ve done better. Seconds later, Oblak made an excellent reflex save on Lacazette’s close-range header.The referee made a gigantic decision to show Vrsaljko a second yellow for a foul on Lacazette in the 13th minute. It was extremely brave from Clement Turpin to do that and even though Simeone was in disbelief over what had happened, replays showed that the Croatian right back did step on Lacazette’s foot. The red card was justified. The volatile Argentinian coach then screamed at the referee for a foul by Bellerin, asking for a yellow card. Instead, he was sent to the stands for his angry gestures and protests. I have to give credit to the young referee. Every decision he made was the right one. He could’ve calmly shown a red card to Atletico’s assistant manager as well.Oblak denied Arsenal again in the 20th minute. He saved Welbeck’s attempt at going between his legs. On the ensuing corner kick, the ball came to Koscielny, who failed to direct it towards goal at the far post. Moments later, Lacazette was calling for a foul inside Atletico’s box, but was fortunate not to receive a booking for diving. Bellerin was getting tons of space on the right flank and was sending crosses at will. In the 37th minute, we almost saw a nightmare scenario develop for Arsenal. Thomas Partey dribbled past three players, the ball bounced off a fourth one onto his foot and he passed the ball to Griezmann, who fired a shot right at Ospina.Arsenal suffer huge blow as Lacazette is ruled out until October Andrew Smyth – September 13, 2019 Arsenal announced that striker Alexandre Lacazette has suffered an ankle injury and will be sidelined until October.Whenever in possession, The Gunners were sending a lot of players forward. However, considering the man advantage, they weren’t doing enough to exploit it. We went into half-time with no goals in either net.Atletico’s defense dropped deeper in the second half, as most of its players were in the 25 to 30-meter area in front of Oblak’s goal. Patience eventually paid off for Arsenal. Wilshere made a cross inside the box in the 61st minute. A great leap at the back post by Alexandre Lacazette and his header gave the home team a 1-0 lead. It was the breakthrough Wenger’s men were so desperate for. The first substitution of the match came in the 65th minute, when Gameiro was replaced by Gabi. Lacazette was really pumped up after the goal. He was everywhere. In the 70th minute he almost flicked the ball in the net with his head again.The Spanish side further strengthened its defense with the next switch, which was Savic in, Correa out. The thought process was ‘Live to fight another day’. Then, in the blank of an eye, Griezmann had the visitors level. An innocent ball forward, two defenders unable to contain one player and Arsenal was punished. A disastrous moment for Gunners fans worldwide and a moment of elation for the opposition fans. Soon after the goal, Griezmann was replaced by Fernando Torres. Oblak made another world-class save in the 86th minute, this time stopping Ramsey’s header.The game pretty much summarized most of the Arsene Wenger’s era at Arsenal, an era of missed opportunities and leaky defense. Despite total domination, Arsenal wasn’t the team going to the second leg with the advantage.
Parma boss Roberto D’Aversa believes “nothing is impossible” as they prepare to host Juventus.Parma started their Serie A season with a 2-2 draw against Udinese, where they blew a two-goal lead and 1-0 loss to SPAL. D’Aversa is now hoping his team can take points off Juventus.“Juventus have as their greatest strengths the possession play and mentality of their Coach. We must do well to remain compact and allow few spaces between the lines,” D’Aversa said in his Press conference.[via Football Italia]“Clearly it’s a difficult game, but nothing is impossible. We’ll try to play the perfect match and hope Juve have an off day.”“At this moment, there’s more talk about Ronaldo than the club. He’s one of the best players in the world, but let’s not forget Juve have champions in every area of the pitch and on the bench too.Vidic: “Ronaldo is the most professional footballer I’ve seen” Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Nemanja Vidic opened up on how a 21-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo’s professionalism left him stunned at Manchester United.“I met Massimiliano Allegri when I went to view his training sessions at Vinovo and the fact he doesn’t feel the need to hide his methods is a sign of how great he is. Allegri gives a sense of calm to the team and that was decisive last season in the race with Napoli.“We must use this motivation and pride in facing prestigious opponents. In my career, the most decisive victories were earned when nobody expected them. Nothing is impossible in life.”
Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez has confirmed that Salomon Rondon is fit and available for their game against Southampton at St. Mary’s on Saturday.Rondon has been out injured since Newcastle’s goalless draw at Crystal Palace in September.Newcastle currently sit bottom of the Premier League table with just two points after nine matches and Benitez is happy to have nearly his full squad with the return of Rondon.Premier League Betting: Match-day 5 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Going into the Premier League’s match-day five with a gap already beginning to form at the top of the league. We will take a…“Rondón is available, he’s in the squad. Everyone is available apart from (Florian) Lejeune and (Jamie) Sterry,” Benitez told NUFC website.“You can see that we signed (Rondón) as a main striker. We were missing him for games. When he played against Crystal Palace, he was injured and it was a pity.“Now he’s fit, hopefully, he can stay fit for a while and at least increase the competition between the offensive players – that is something that is good for any team.”