When the final whistle was blown on an emotional night in Yokohama, it was evident from the joy on the players' faces that magnificent Japan's history-making triumph over Scotland was about more than rugby.

Typhoon Hagibis left a trail of death and mass destruction with ferocious winds and record-breaking rainfall after hitting landfall south of Tokyo on Saturday.

There was uncertainty over whether the decisive Pool A showdown between the host nation and Scotland would go ahead on Sunday, but the green light was given following a safety inspection on the morning of the game at Yokohama International Stadium.

What followed was 80 minutes of thrilling action as Japan reached the Rugby World Cup quarter-finals for the first time.

Scottish Rugby had talked of taking legal action if the blockbuster contest was cancelled, given they needed a victory to have any chance of being consigned to an early exit.

Instead they may be launching an internal inquest after Gregor Townsend's side went down 28-21 in a pulsating battle.

The stadium was not damaged by the biggest typhoon to hit the Asian nation for decades and a raucous sold-out crowd cheered their team to glorious new ground.

Jamie Joseph's side played with incredible intensity from start to finish, defended stoically and showed their class with ball in hand to set up a meeting with South Africa in Tokyo next Sunday.

The Brave Blossoms waded through knee-high waters to train on the eve of a match that they were not sure would go ahead and although Scotland fought back in the second half, they could not prevent the hosts from advancing.

Japan were relentless after Finn Russell's early try, Kotaro Matsushima whipping their exuberant supporters into frenzy with his fifth try of the tournament.

Keita Inagaki raised the decibels even higher by putting them in front and Scotland looked to be out on their feet after the lethal Kenki Fukuoka - scorer of the only try against Ireland - touched down either side of half-time.

Scotland were struggling to cope with their opponents' expansive style of play; the power, speed and skill of Japan leaving their hopes of qualifying hanging by a thread.

Yet two tries in the space of five minutes from WP Nel and Zander Ferguson threatened to spoil the party, Russell pulling the strings as the tension mounted.

The hosts laid it all on the line as Scotland threw everything at them in an attempt to tear up the script and break Japan hearts.

Joseph's men were not to be denied, though, holding on to make it four wins out of four and secure top spot on a weekend that will be remembered for such contrasting reasons.

Stefano Pioli has become the latest head coach to lead both Inter and city rivals AC Milan. 

Former Inter boss Pioli joins an exclusive club after replacing Marco Giampaolo at Milan, who finally lost faith just seven Serie A games into his tenure.

Pioli is no stranger to San Siro, having spent a season on the blue side of Milan in 2016-17.

Inter had won 12 of their first 16 Serie A matches under Pioli before a run of five losses and two draws prior to his sacking in May two years ago.

As Pioli prepares to take the reins amid backlash from Milan fans and the hashtag "#PioliOut", we look at the coaches to have worked on both sides of the divide in a fierce rivalry dating back to 1909.

 

JOZSEF VIOLA

Viola was the first man to coach both Inter and Milan. Inter, then known as Societa Sportiva Ambrosiana, appointed the 32-year-old Hungarian for the 1928-29 season.

After three years at Atalanta, Viola made a switch to Milan for a brief stint in 1933-34. Known for his work as a player and a coach with Juventus, the one-cap Hungary international returned to the Rossoneri from 1939 to 1940.

GIUSEPPE BIGOGNO

A stalwart at Fiorentina, Bigogno left Florence for the red side of Milan in 1946. The Italian led Milan to a second-placed finish in 1947-48 prior to leaving a year later.

Bigogno's coaching career took him to Torino, Lazio and Udinese before ending up at Inter, where he only lasted half a season in 1958.

LUIGI RADICE

A member of Italy's 1962 World Cup squad, former Milan full-back Radice took charge of his boyhood club in 1981 after stints with Monza, Treviso, Cesena, Fiorentina, Cagliari, Torino and Bologna. Radice, who survived a car accident in 1979 which killed two men before passing away in 2018, was replaced by Italo Galbiati halfway through the season as Milan were eventually relegated.

Radice then joined Inter in 1983 - the Nerazzurri finished fourth in his sole season.

ILARIO CASTAGNER

A rare exception, Castagner went straight from Milan to Inter. Castagner guided Milan to promotion at the end of the 1982-83 season, winning the Serie B title. However, he was sacked in March 1984.

Castagner quickly found his feet, crossing the divide to Inter, where he oversaw a third-placed finish in Serie A and runs to the semi-finals of the UEFA Cup and Coppa Italia. He was surprisingly replaced by Mario Corso in November 1985.

GIOVANNI TRAPATTONI

Having represented Milan as a player between 1959 and 71 - winning the Scudetto and European Cup twice, among other honours - Trapattoni began coaching the club at youth level. Considered the most successful club coach in Serie A history, he was named caretaker for a brief spell in 1974, later serving as first team coach.

After six Serie A titles with Juventus, Trapattoni controversially returned to San Siro but as Inter boss from 1986 to 1991. During his time at Inter, he won the Scudetto (1988-89), Supercoppa Italiana (1989) and UEFA Cup (1990-91).

ALBERTO ZACCHERONI

Milan went from Fabio Capello to Zaccheroni in 1998. The new man made an immediate impact, winning Serie A by one point ahead of Lazio in his first season at the helm. Almost two campaigns followed before Zaccheroni was sacked in March 2001.

Inter turned to him in the middle of the 2003-04 season following Hector Cuper's exit. Despite guiding Inter to fourth place and securing Champions League qualification, Zaccheroni's tenure was brief as president Massimo Moratti replaced him with Roberto Mancini.

LEONARDO

Now sporting director of Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain, Leonardo was the last coach to represent both Milan and Inter.

A member of the Milan squad that won the 1998-99 Scudetto, the Brazilian was tasked with following in the footsteps of successful coach Carlo Ancelotti, who left for Chelsea in 2009, despite lacking the required coaching badges. Stepping up from his role as technical director, Leonardo's start to life as coach was difficult following a shock 4-0 loss to Inter. Results showed signs of improvement but Leonardo eventually departed by mutual agreement at season's end.

In December 2010, Leonardo replaced Rafael Benitez at Inter on an 18-month contract. He set a Serie A record by collecting 33 points in 13 games and oversaw a memorable Champions League win over Bayern Munich. However, Leonardo - who ended his spell with Coppa Italia glory - eventually resigned in June after the club's failed title bid.

Marco Giampaolo has become the latest AC Milan head coach to see his time at San Siro cut unceremoniously short.

Appointed in June on an initial two-year contract, the 52-year-old oversaw just seven Serie A matches before becoming the seventh Rossoneri boss to be sacked since Massimiliano Allegri left in January 2014.

Four defeats and only six goals scored in those seven league games underlines the difficult start to the season Milan have made, even if they did battle to a decent win over Genoa on Saturday.

Still, sacking a coach so soon in a season is remarkably impatient and short-sighted, surely? Well, Opta data paints something of a different picture...


1 - This is the first team a Milan head coach has been sacked after the first seven matchdays of a Serie A season.

5 - There are actually only five coaches, including Giampaolo, who did not reach 10 games in all competitions in charge. The others are Arrigo Morselli (nine games, September to November 1953); Cristian Brocchi (seven games, April to May 2016); Bruno Arcari (six games, May to June 1956); and Paolo Barison (five games, June 1976).

4 - Giampaolo is the first Milan boss to lose four of his first six Serie A games since Italo Galbiati back in 1982. Giampaolo lost to Udinese, Inter, Torino and Fiorentina. In fact, the last Milan coach to lose three games in a row in the league was Vincenzo Montella in October 2017.

100 - Giampaolo's record in Serie A is an average of 1.17 points per game from 315 matches in total. Of the current coaches in Serie A to have taken charge of 100 or more matches, only Cagliari's Rolando Maran has a lower average (1.15 from 246 games). The next lowest is Sinisa Mihajlovic, another former Milan boss, who averages 1.4 points per game from 269 in total.

- Giampaolo is the second coach to be sacked in Serie A after the first seven matchdays - Giuseppe Iachini with Udinese was the first in 2016-17. The other? Giampaolo's successor at Sampdoria, Eusebio Di Francesco, also lasted just seven games this season before being dismissed on Monday.

First Alec Stewart was seen as the leading candidate. Then Gary Kirsten became the front-runner for the job. In the end, though, Chris Silverwood came up on the rails to become England's new head coach.

The 44-year-old nicknamed 'Spoons' may not be a top-drawer name in comparison to others linked with the high-profile vacancy, but he has undoubtedly earned his opportunity.

Promoted from his role as bowling coach under previous coach Trevor Bayliss, Silverwood made clear his focus in the statement confirming his appointment: "I aim to continue the great work that has been done over the past five years and build on our future, especially in the Test arena."

So, who is the man now in charge of the England team? We take a look at his career path to the job, as well as highlighting some of the key issues he faces at the start of his reign.

 

Playing days and coaching success

Born in Pontefract, Yorkshireman Silverwood spent the majority of his playing career at his home county before finishing up at Middlesex. A lively pace bowler, he played six Tests and seven one-day games for England but never truly established himself at international level.

His reputation as a coach was forged at domestic level with Essex, first working with the county's bowlers before taking over in charge of the first team in 2016.

He immediately led them to promotion from Division Two and then, the following year, they were crowned county champions for the first time in 25 years.

Their success was spearheaded by a Kolpak recruit in Simon Harmer, yet the team also contained plenty of homegrown talent.  He helped seamer Jamie Porter rise to become one of the most consistent wicket-takers in first-class cricket, while batsman Tom Westley also earned international recognition during his watch.

Crucially for Essex, the foundations were laid for future success. This year, under the guidance of Silverwood's former assistant Anthony McGrath, a familiar-looking squad has won both the Vitality Blast and the County Championship again. 

"In his time with Essex, his outstanding leadership and interpersonal skills were a major factor in taking our cricket to the next level," John Faragher, Essex chairman, told the county's official website.

 

Moving on up

Silverwood's work with Essex unsurprisingly led to a job with England, as he was appointed bowling coach in 2017.

Working as part of Bayliss' staff, he was involved in the successful Cricket World Cup campaign on home soil earlier this year, with the tournament hosts aided by the emergence of Jofra Archer.

However, Silverwood has remained very much in the background, rarely talking to the media. Still, his work – and his words – were enough to convince the powers that be when it came to the main job.

"Chris demonstrated in his interview a clear understanding and strategy of how both the red and white ball teams need to evolve. He has some detailed thoughts on what it will take to win the Ashes in Australia and win major ICC white-ball tournaments," Ashley Giles, managing director of the England team, said in a statement.

"Over the past couple of years, he has been an integral member of developing the teams’ culture and emerging a cohesive relationship across the team's management group."

Giles' quotes contained two key words - "Ashes" and "culture".

England have undoubtedly prioritised white-ball cricket in recent years – and with great success, too – but a failure to beat Australia on home soil in Bayliss' final Test series in charge has shifted the longer format back into focus.

When it comes to culture, England's hierarchy have gone with a homegrown option. Australian Bayliss admitted he did not pay too much attention to county cricket – that will not be the case with Silverwood, who has a wealth of experience as both a player and a coach.

Yet Silverwood has also seen what exactly is required to prosper in the international game. To that extent, he also has an advantage in knowing how both Joe Root - who will work alongside his fellow Yorkshireman with the Test team - and white-ball specialist Eoin Morgan tick, having been part of the inner sanctum for a couple of years.

 

Planning for the future

A busy schedule, that’s what. International cricket is a non-stop treadmill, though the grind of games all-year round is nothing new to Silverwood.

While there is a Twenty20 World Cup coming up next year, England are a well-oiled machine in white-ball cricket. There may be players who emerge in the coming months to force their way in - just as Archer did once he was available - but the bulk of the group is already known, and Morgan is an experienced leader with clear plans on how his team should play.

So, as Silverwood said himself, Test cricket is to be the main focus.  In the near future, there are tours to New Zealand and South Africa coming up, but the long-term aim is winning the Ashes Down Under in 2021-22.

Archer has added some much-needed pace to go alongside England's leading two wicket-takers in James Anderson (fitness permitting) and Stuart Broad. On their last visit to Australia, the attack was distinctly lacking in terms of speed, such a crucial factor in conditions where swing is less of a factor.

The batting, though, requires serious work - less of a cosmetic job and more a case of knocking it down and starting again.

Silverwood needs to begin the rebuild at the top, with England desperately needing to establish a regular top three. Root looks set to return to four, while the talk from national selector Ed Smith after Jonny Bairstow was dropped for the New Zealand series suggests he should concentrate just on batting, rather than continuing behind the stumps.

Ben Stokes is a certainty in the middle order, but Silverwood has to be careful with overburdening the all-rounder.

As with others who play all formats, workload management will be key for Stokes. Being England coach is often about spinning plates, but the complexities of the job are nothing new for Silverwood, the quiet man who now gets the chance to set the tone after stepping out from the background.

Inter's 100 per cent start to the Serie A season came to a crashing halt on Sunday as champions Juventus returned to the top of the table with a significant win at San Siro.

Gonzalo Higuain's late strike sealed a 2-1 win for Maurizio Sarri's side as they inflicted a first domestic defeat on Antonio Conte since he joined the Nerazzurri ahead of the 2019-20 campaign.

There is a two-week break now for international action before the sides return to domestic duties on the weekend of October 19/20.

Here, Omnisport predicts how both clubs could fare in their first five fixtures upon the resumption of Serie A and how the table might look come mid-November.

 

FAVOURABLE RUN FOR CONTE'S MEN

Predictions for next five fixtures:

- Sassuolo 0-3 Inter

- Inter 2-1 Parma

- Brescia 0-2 Inter

- Bologna 1-3 Inter

- Inter 3-0 Hellas Verona

Inter will be targeting a maximum points return from their five games and there is little reason they cannot achieve that, given the mediocrity of their opponents. They do not face a team that is currently positioned higher than 10th, which should have Romelu Lukaku and Lautaro Martinez licking their lips.

Given three of the games are away from home, Conte might remain cautious but there is a great chance to crank up the pressure on Juve.

TRICKY DOUBLE-HEADER AWAITS CHAMPIONS

Juventus 3-1 Bologna

Lecce 0-2 Juventus

Juventus 3-0 Genoa

Torino 1-1 Juventus

Juventus 2-2 AC Milan

Like Inter, Juventus take on a string of sides who have started the season in less than stellar fashion. They should have few problems in their first three games, given two of those sides currently languish in the relegation zone, but it is the games against Torino and AC Milan that could prove tricky.

With speculation mounting that Marco Giampaolo could lose his job at Milan, the Rossoneri might well be under new leadership by the time that fixture rolls around, while Torino will be fired up to get one over on their city rivals. Those factors could be enough to see Sarri's side drop points and hand the title advantage to Inter. 

If our predictions are correct, Inter will hold a three-point lead over Juve by the middle of November. Clearly, the race for the title will be far from over but it might just allow Conte and his men to dream about ending the Bianconeri's eight-year stranglehold on the scudetto.

There was supposed to be a deafening rendition of 'Return of the Mack' in London on Sunday, but Josh Jacobs and the Oakland Raiders' offensive line found the mute button.

All the build-up to the first NFL game at Tottenham between Oakland and the Chicago Bears centred around star pass rusher Khalil Mack - who was shipped to the Windy City just over a year ago - and his reunion with the franchise that let him go rather than paying him the $141million he received across six years from his current team.

Great pass rushers are, according to Raiders head coach Jon Gruden, "hard to find" and yet he had Mack, the man who came into this contest as analytics website PFF's top-ranked edge rusher in 2019. Since he was acquired, the Chicago defense had led the league in takeaways and sacks and conceded the fewest points.

Gruden had done his best to ignore 'Return of the Mack' all week, telling reporters he had no desire to discuss it, but his game-planning showed it was lodged firmly in his head, like that annoying song on the radio that lingers throughout the day.

Mack was double-teamed constantly, running plays were directed away from him and quarterback Derek Carr got the ball out quickly or rolled to the opposite side of the field to negate his threat.

By half-time, the Raiders were 17-0 up and threatening a beatdown having accumulated 208 yards of offense on a much-vaunted defense.

No one could hear 'Return of the Mack'. Instead it was running back Jacobs, the man selected with one of the picks Oakland acquired in the Mack trade, who was making all the noise having scored the first touchdown.

Then came the key change from Oakland's second offensive play of the second half. Carr's toss to Jacobs failed to find its intended target and a mad scramble for the ball ensued. Who came up with it? Khalil Mack. You knew that he'd be back.

The man who had been compared to NBA superstar LeBron James by team-mate Prince Amukamara for his ability to raise the game of those around him had provided a spark.

Suddenly the Bears were alive - Allen Robinson caught two touchdown passes and made another obscene catch, Tarik Cohen took a punt return 71 yards and Sherrick McManis forced a turnover by punching the ball out on the goalline. With less than eight minutes to go, Chicago were 21-17 ahead.

However, the most important series of the night was still to come. A 13-play, 97-yard drive dominated by who else but Jacobs, who reached out to score what proved to be the winning score in a 24-21 success.

Mack finished with three tackles, one quarterback hit, one fumble recovery and no sacks. Jacobs, meanwhile, had 26 carries for 123 yards and two touchdowns.

It was music to the ears of Gruden.

The serial winner looking to topple the dynasty he established versus the idealist who must show he can string together results as he does cigarettes. No two men could ever be bigger than Inter versus Juventus, but Antonio Conte, Maurizio Sarri and their sharply contrasting ideologies loomed large over the latest instalment of this historic clash.

Inter's 100 per cent start in Serie A and Juve's comparatively tentative first steps under Sarri – alongside the respective esteem in which each coach was held while at Chelsea – meant the script felt somewhat set as the teams emerged at an expectant San Siro.

Juventus' flying start suggested otherwise, as they followed Sarri's way line by line and to the syllable.

Inter answered in kind – Diego Godin splattering his old Madrid derby foe Cristiano Ronaldo on the turf in a case of Sarrismo meeting machismo – but insufficiently, as Miralem Pjanic's immaculate pass carved enough space for Paulo Dybala to lash a shot through Samir Handanovic's hands.

Ronaldo was alternately playing to the gallery and the gameplan, and the deft footwork that ended with him planting an effort against the crossbar cut an uncomfortable contrast with the hosts' most convincing early foray, when Romelu Lukaku ploughed towards Leonardo Bonucci in a straight line and was dispossessed.

Wojciech Szczesny passing a ball out for a throw-in near his own byline in the 13th minute showed a Bianconeri still coming to terms with Sarri's preferred means of building play. Alex Sandro was booked for trying to delay the restart and Inter seized on momentary uncertainty to apply judicious pressure.

It was typical of a Conte team, clinically sensing their moment. His wing-backs pushed on, Matthijs de Ligt headed a Danilo D'Ambrosio delivery away under pressure, but erred the next time he was called upon by Nicolo Barella at the near post.

Lautaro Martinez made himself enough of a nuisance for De Ligt to handball. Up stepped the Argentina striker to make it 1-1. By the time he got the better of Bonucci to test Szczesny in the 28th minute, Inter were in the ascendancy.

Juve needed to settle back into their work, with some lovely touches from Pjanic, Sami Khedira and Ronaldo played out before an uncompromising and unmoving back five.

Makeshift full-back Juan Cuadrado started their next attack with an audacious pass around Martinez near his own goal-line. Conte's men stood off and Sarri's side were rewarded for trusting their method.

The Bianconeri were back on the front foot and another delicious Pjanic pass met a Dybala lay-off. Ronaldo finished and tore off inimitably, only for VAR to fractionally and cruelly rule against his strike partner.

A touchline skirmish at the interval – "brawl" would be overstating the case – seemed to be instigated by Inter, although De Ligt's crunching challenge on Martinez early in the second half showed Juve were not here to be pushed around while they looked pretty.

Following Pjanic's prompting it was Khedria's turn, in a midfield alliance that sometimes purred like the Jorginho and Allan pairing under Sarri at Napoli, to unpick Inter. Dybala was onside this time, but Handanovic was out sharply.

For all that, the visitors had not managed to shake the Nerazzurri and a live Conte team is a dangerous one. Lukaku was enduring one of his clumsier outings but drove at De Ligt to force an inch-perfect challenge in the area before tumbling under Bonucci's attentions and appealing in vain for a penalty.

De Ligt's mixed showing continued when he turned his back on a drive from substitute Matias Vecino, deflecting it against the post with Szczesny rooted.

Inter were again rumbling their way on top, but Sarri showed there was room for pragmatism within the high-spec masterplan. On came Emre Can for Dybala to add some midfield ballast before his other two replacements – Rodrigo Bentancur and Gonzalo Higuain – combined to send Juventus back to the top of the table.

Like Sarri, Higuain was a hero in Naples and derided at Stamford Bridge. There could be no more fitting matchwinner on a night Sarri faced down the doubters and gave the most compelling demonstration yet that his widescreen vision can be a winning one.

Could we have seen a potentially decisive weekend in the Premier League title race?

Liverpool opened an eight-point lead over Manchester City at the summit as James Milner's last-gasp penalty secured a precious 2-1 win over Leicester City on Saturday.

The Reds moved eight points clear with the last-gasp triumph – and City were unable to cut into it as they slipped to a shock 2-0 defeat at home to Wolves on Sunday.

As for Manchester United, their torrid recent form continued with a 1-0 defeat at Newcastle United, while struggling Tottenham were on the end of a resounding 3-0 loss at Brighton and Hove Albion.

Our Premier League Data Diary sheds some light on the detail behind the big stories of this weekend's top games.

 

REDS LEAVE IT LATE TO MAINTAIN PERFECT START

Victory over Leicester means Liverpool have now won their past 17 Premier League games, just one short of Manchester City's top-flight record of 18.

They have also become just the seventh side in history to win each of their opening eight matches in an English top-flight season.

The Reds forged ahead through Sadio Mane's 50th league goal for the club in what was his 100th appearance in the competition for Jurgen Klopp's side.

James Maddison gave the Foxes hope of a point, though, with their first and only shot on target.

However, Milner stepped up deep into added time to seal yet another win for the hosts. It marked the 34th time they have scored a winning goal in a Premier League match in or after the 90th minute, which is at least nine more than any other team

TRAORE DOUBLE DOWNS INSIPID CITY

City were failed to respond to Liverpool's victory, slipping to just a fourth home league defeat in 61 matches under Pep Guardiola.

It was the first time they have lost a Premier League match at the Etihad Stadium without scoring since March 2016, when they were beaten 1-0 by neighbours Manchester United.

Wolves were indebted to a superb double from Adama Traore inside the final 10 minutes to claim their second league win of the season. Remarkably, he had failed to score in his previous 32 Premier League matches.

The result marked the first time Wolves have beaten City away from home in a top-flight fixture since December 1979.

LONGSTAFF PILES MISERY ON SOLSKJAER

United's woeful start to the season reached a new low on Sunday. The sorry defeat at Newcastle means they have won a mere nine points from their opening eight games – their lowest total at this stage since the 1989-90 campaign.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's beleaguered squad are now winless in their last eight away league games – their longest such run in the top flight since September 1989, when they went 11 games without victory.

Under-pressure Newcastle boss Steve Bruce, meanwhile, can celebrate after registering his first ever win as a manager against the club he served as a player, doing so at the 23rd attempt.

Victory came courtesy of Matty Longstaff's drilled effort 18 minutes from time, the 19-year-old becoming the youngest player to score on his Premier League debut for Newcastle.

SEAGULLS SWOOP TO TAKE ADVANTAGE

Tottenham's defeat at Brighton means they have now lost 17 games in all competitions in 2019 – more than any other top-flight side.

Brighton went ahead after just three minutes, Neal Maupay nodding in after Hugo Lloris fumbled a cross - injuring himself in the process. Only Asmir Begovic (21) has made more errors leading to goals than Lloris (18) in the Premier League since his debut in the competition in October 2012.

Nineteen-year-old Aaron Connolly then added two more either side of the interval to seal a memorable win for the hosts. The Irishman is the first teenager to start a Premier League game for Brighton and also the first to score in the league for the Seagulls since Jake Forster-Caskey in April 2014.

The win equalled Brighton's biggest margin of victory in a top-flight game and meant they scored more than once in a league home game for the first time in 16 matches.

A year to the day since their stunning 3-2 comeback at home to Newcastle United eased the pressure on then-boss Jose Mourinho, Manchester United continued what appears to be a slow, painful march into mediocrity against the same opposition on Sunday.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer initially sparked a turnaround in United's fortunes as he lifted the gloom around Old Trafford, breathing life into the club following the end of Mourinho's reign.

Since March's VAR-assisted comeback win at Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League, though, United have been abysmal and Solskjaer's days appear increasingly numbered. Perhaps only a lack of viable alternatives is keeping him in the job.

There are extenuating circumstances. At St James' Park there was no Paul Pogba, Luke Shaw, Anthony Martial, Jesse Lingard, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Victor Lindelof or Eric Bailly, all injured.

With so many regulars missing most teams would struggle, but United's lack of squad depth is of their own making. They failed to sign any attacking reinforcements after allowing both Romelu Lukaku and Alexis Sanchez to join Inter, a decision signed off by Solskjaer.

Of those players remaining, Marcus Rashford's confidence has never looked lower, the initial spark provided by Wales winger Daniel James has fizzled out and David de Gea no longer looks among the world's best goalkeepers.

Few Premier League teams would find any use for Fred, a below-average midfielder who only gets selected as an alternative to the static Nemanja Matic. Andreas Pereira's inability to provide little creativity whatsoever is partly due to being fielded on the wing rather than his preferred central position, but mostly because the Brazilian seems out of his depth at this level. Juan Mata, despite a continued sureness of touch, ceased to be an elite playmaker several years ago. To describe Scott McTominay as an enigma would be kind.

At Newcastle, against a team hammered and humiliated by Leicester City last time out, Solskjaer's side created almost nothing from open play – they managed three shots on target – although how Harry Maguire failed to convert Ashley Young's corner when given a free header from five yards out will forever be a mystery.

There was no surprise when Newcastle, whose under-fire boss Steve Bruce was marking his 400th Premier League game as a manager, broke the deadlock in the rain 72 minutes in.

Matty Longstaff rattled the crossbar in the first half, Miguel Almiron wasted two clear sights of goal and Andy Carroll headed an inviting centre wide before De Gea was finally beaten from outside the box.

Longstaff, making his Premier League debut alongside older brother Sean in the Newcastle midfield, then sent a true drive fizzing into the net, much to the delight of the home fans.

Beating United is no longer that special, though. This season they have already lost to Crystal Palace and West Ham in the league. They needed penalties to get past Rochdale in the EFL Cup. Ex-United centre-back Bruce had overseen 22 matches against United without recording a single victory.

Newcastle moving out of the bottom three will buy Bruce some much-needed goodwill and time, which are both rapidly running out for Solskjaer. Top four? They're not even in the top half of the table.

With eight games gone, reigning Premier League champions Manchester City are eight points adrift of early pacesetters Liverpool following a shock 2-0 loss to Wolves on Sunday.

City's start to 2019-20 has been hindered by a series of defensive injuries. Their best centre-back, Aymeric Laporte, is a long-term absentee, while Benjamin Mendy joined John Stones as a hamstring injury victim this weekend.

Add the fact they failed to replace long-serving captain Vincent Kompany in the transfer window and it is no surprise their defence is in dire straits.

The paucity of first-team options at the back is making manager Pep Guardiola go against his instincts.

Prior to a 2-2 draw against Tottenham in August, a match for which Laporte was available, Guardiola was asked about the possibility of deploying club-record signing Rodri and Fernandinho together in defensive midfield for crunch matches.

"I don't believe in football putting these two guys [in front of the defence] gives you more security for the team," said Guardiola. "I've never believed in my life that by putting in more defensive holding midfielders you defend better.

"You play better, especially with the ball, when everybody commits and everybody fights without the ball. So when we defend better it's because there are 11 reasons. You have to find the balance."

Guardiola has been forced to use his first-choice holding midfielder Fernandinho as a centre-back, hastening a planned transition for the 34-year-old and meaning City they are without the man they need screening a makeshift back four.

Ilkay Gundogan and Rodri sat in front of the defence on Sunday and proved Guardiola right; two holding midfielders does not always provide greater security.

City were vulnerable to the break. A stray pass from Riyad Mahrez in the 19th minute let Raul Jimenez in and only a fine recovering tackle from Fernandinho kept him at bay, the Brazilian somehow managing to block Patrick Cutrone's follow-up while down on the deck too.

The champions' case was not aided by Nicolas Otamendi. In times like these, what Guardiola needs most is a competent performance from his only fit centre-back. The Argentine failed to rise to the occasion.

Otamendi's stray pass on halfway let Wolves break again, with Fernandinho just doing enough to put Jimenez off without conceding a penalty when the Mexican was one-on-one with Ederson.

Wolves were at the door, and City were leaving it wide open.

It perhaps did not help that Guardiola deployed Joao Cancelo, a player far more familiar with the right side of the back four, at left-back while Oleksandr Zinchenko and Angelino started on the bench.

Zinchenko was sent on at the conclusion of a lacklustre first half, but City remained without any drive from midfield or a coherent attack. They sent in 29 crosses from open play – since the start of last season the only times they attempted more in the Premier League was during similar shock defeats to Norwich City (31) and Crystal Palace (30).

David Silva rattled the crossbar from a free-kick in City's best chance before Cancelo ceded possession high up the pitch and Wolves surged clear. Jimenez negotiated a flailing and ineffective Otamendi challenge and squared for Adama Traore to slot an uncharacteristically composed finish beyond Ederson.

Another rapid break saw a disjointed City carved apart with ease and Traore complete the scoring in the fourth added minute.

The international break has arrived at a good time for City and Guardiola – with Stones and the influential Kevin De Bruyne expected to be back when they resume at Crystal Palace on October 19 – although the chance to bolster their centre-back options in the January transfer window may be their best opportunity to set things straight.

Liverpool are one of only six clubs to have won all of their opening eight matches of a top-flight season in England.

Saturday's 2-1 victory over Leicester City, courtesy of a James Milner penalty deep into injury time, means Jurgen Klopp's side have matched a feat the club first achieved back in 1991.

It also stretches Liverpool's run to 17 consecutive league victories, putting them just one short of matching the record set by Pep Guardiola's Manchester City between August and December two years ago.

City have never opened a season with eight wins in a row, though. Chelsea, Manchester United, Tottenham, Sheffield United and Everton are the only teams apart from Liverpool to have managed that.

Surprisingly, such a start has mostly led to an unsuccessful bid to win the top-flight title.

Of the seven occasions that a team has won eight from eight at the start of the season, only twice has that side gone on to become champions of England in that same campaign.

Chelsea managed it under Jose Mourinho in 2005-06, but you have to go back to 1961 for the only other instance, when Tottenham won their second and most recent league title.

In 1991, Liverpool finished second to Arsenal after their perfect start, while Manchester United could only manage fourth after winning their first 10 in a row in 1985-86.

Sheffield United ended up down in seventh after storming to eight straight wins to kick off the campaign back in 1904, and Everton were league runners-up to Sunderland in 1894-95.

Can Liverpool buck this trend in 2019-20? Their first game after the international break might give some indication, when they will look to match City's 18-match winning run – by beating Manchester United at Old Trafford.

Eden Hazard has finally arrived at Real Madrid. The reported €100million signing opened his goalscoring account and got an assist on Saturday, helping unconvincing Los Blancos see off Granada 4-2 at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Having played five matches before the visit of Diego Martinez's men and with only a yellow card to show for his efforts, pundits had been quick to point out the Belgium international's stuttering form.

There is no doubt Hazard's hamstring injury in August played a significant role in disrupting his start to life in Madrid, preventing him from playing the first few weeks of the season.

Yet, for all the understanding from some, Hazard had become a key conversation topic around the club, with questions dominating Zidane's news conferences.

To Zidane's credit, he had been quick to back Hazard – perhaps learning from his treatment of Gareth Bale – and even suggested there were parallels to his own start at the Bernabeu.

"I know [Hazard] is going to succeed here," Zidane said before Madrid were held to a 2-2 draw against Club Brugge in the Champions League on Tuesday.

"The same thing happened to me, this is why I'm very calm, I knew things would work out for me in time and it's the same with Hazard."

While Zidane is probably bending the truth with respect to his own start, having scored three times by the end of September in his first season at the club, it was a comment made to buy Hazard a little extra time – after all, Madrid's fans are infamous for their lack of patience.

Having again been underwhelming against Brugge, making just one key pass, Hazard still initially appeared rusty in the visit of Granada – allowing a defender the chance to get a foot in and tackle him when well placed to cut a ball back into the danger zone.

But in the 42nd minute a low cross almost found Bale, who wanted a penalty for an apparent foul by Carlos Neva, suggesting the Belgian was settling into the contest.

And his next involvement in stoppage time saw Hazard make the sort of impact he did so regularly with Chelsea, racing on to a throughball and nonchalantly lobbing Rui Silva to make it 2-0, adding to Karim Benzema's opener.

The relief on his face was soon replaced by unbridled joy – Sergio Ramos' reaction seeming to say, "About time!".

He followed that up in the second half with an assist, going on a mazy run on the left flank, before cutting back inside and teeing up Luka Modric, having drawn several defenders in.

Modric subsequently unleashed a ferocious strike into the top-left corner from 30 yards, taking full advantage of the space made for him.

No one will attempt to claim Hazard is back to his best on the back of this match – after all, he was generally quiet in the first half and he only got an assist because of Modric's excellence.

But after a sequence of below-par performances in which he offered precious little, Hazard has at least shown hints of his brilliance in a Madrid shirt for the first time.

And given Madrid's rather fragile mentality – as evidenced by the performances against Brugge, Levante, Real Valladolid and now Granada, who fought back from three goals down before James Rodriguez struck late on – Zidane needs Hazard in full stride as soon as possible.

Tottenham's 3-0 defeat at Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday condemned Spurs to a second successive loss with 10 goals conceded this week, piling the pressure on manager Mauricio Pochettino. 

Spurs were demolished 7-2 in their own stadium by Bayern Munich in the Champions League on Tuesday, prompting further questions of Pochettino, who continues to be linked with a departure. 

Pochettino urged his team to produce a response at Brighton, telling his players to "man up" and put things right. 

But a Brighton side inspired by 19-year-old Aaron Connolly piled on the misery at the end of a crushing week for Spurs, with Pochettino appearing increasingly defeated and deflated. 

With the manager seemingly running out of ideas, we chart the highs and lows of his time at Spurs. 

LOW – The only way is up 

Tottenham's standing compared to the other big clubs at the start of Pochettino's tenure was laid bare in the first month of the new boss' debut campaign. Liverpool were the visitors, with Spurs hoping for the chance to make something of a statement, but Brendan Rodgers' men blew them away with ease by winning 3-0. It was Spurs' first loss under Pochettino and they went on to miss out on Champions League qualification by six points that term. 


LOW – Stamford Bridge implosion hands Leicester the title 

There was no denying Spurs' vast improvement between Pochettino's first few months and 2016 as they looked to challenge for a maiden Premier League title. However, their form at the end of the season saw them come up short, squandering a 2-0 lead at Chelsea in an ill-tempered encounter to come away with a 2-2 draw, therefore securing a famous success for Leicester City. Pochettino's men finished third, 10 points off the top. 


HIGH – Bidding farewell to White Hart Lane in style 

Having seemingly established themselves as top-four regulars, Spurs looked to further consolidate their new-found status by moving to an extravagant new stadium. In their final outing at the more modest White Hart Lane in May 2017, Spurs downed Manchester United 2-1. A glamourous new era seemed to be on the horizon, with Pochettino steering the Spurs ship expertly. 


HIGH – Spurs hit 13 goals in two games 

Spurs then finished that season in remarkable fashion, crushing Leicester City 6-1 and then going one better against relegated Hull City, winning 7-1 despite both games being away from home. Harry Kane was the star on both occasions, netting four at the King Power Stadium and a treble the following week. Those victories wrapped up a second-place finish in the Premier League. 


HIGH – Manchester United crushed at Old Trafford 

In August 2018, Pochettino was among the favourites to replace an under-fire Jose Mourinho at United and he helped inflict more misery on the Red Devils and make his pitch for the job with an emphatic 3-0 win at Old Trafford. Kane and a Lucas Moura double did the damage, making it the hosts' worst start to a league season since 1992-93. 


HIGH – VAR-ty time as Llorente steers Spurs past City 

Spurs' Champions League hopes appeared to be vanishing against Manchester City in April this year when, after winning 1-0 at home, they found themselves trailing 4-2 in the 59th minute despite earlier leading 2-1 on the night. Fernando Llorente then got what proved the vital goal – the ball striking him and going in, the goal standing even after a VAR check for an apparent handball. Raheem Sterling had no such luck, however, as his stoppage-time goal was disallowed by VAR for offside against Sergio Aguero. Pochettino's men survived a bonkers encounter to reach the last four. 


HIGH – Incredible turnaround secures first Champions League final 

Somehow Spurs managed another lucky escape in the semi-finals as well. A 1-0 defeat at home to Ajax in the first leg had them looking doomed, even more so when Matthijs de Ligt and Hakim Ziyech made it 3-0 on aggregate in the first half of the return fixture in Amsterdam. But a remarkable Lucas Moura hat-trick in the second half sealed a vital 3-2 win in stoppage time and left Ajax devastated. Spurs were heading to Madrid. 


LOW – An underwhelming Champions League final 

Their first Champions League final – it was an historic occasion regardless of the result. Yet, there was an air of frustration at how they approached what proved a tepid contest, with fans bemoaning an apparent lack of attacking intent as a half-fit Harry Kane struggled to make an impact. Mohamed Salah's early penalty gave Pochettino's men an uphill struggle and Divock Origi wrapped things up late on. 


LOW – Battered by Bayern, swept aside at Brighton 

The worst week of Pochettino's reign? If the 7-2 demolition by Bayern Munich at home in the Champions League wasn't bad enough on its own, the embarrassment was exacerbated by the fact an Arsenal academy product – Serge Gnabry – scored four and he certainly milked the occasion. It was the first time Spurs had ever conceded seven at home in a major competition. Despite the pressure increasing on Pochettino, no response was forthcoming on Saturday as Brighton cruised past them 3-0 at the Amex Stadium. 

Tottenham's dismal week concluded in humiliating fashion on Saturday as Mauricio Pochettino's side slumped to a 3-0 defeat at Brighton and Hove Albion.

Spurs' hopes of bouncing back from their 7-2 Champions League capitulation to Bayern Munich in midweek took a blow early on when Hugo Lloris' mistake gifted Neal Maupay the opener.

To further compound the visitors' misery, Lloris was subsequently taken off with an arm injury sustained as he landed awkwardly.

Aaron Connolly scored either side of half-time on his first Premier League start to secure a famous win for Brighton and one that leaves Tottenham with plenty to ponder heading into the international break.

Here we take a look at the best Opta facts from a shock result on the south coast.

17 - Tottenham have now lost 17 games in all competitions in 2019, more than any other Premier League side. Spurs have lost as many matches as they have won in this calendar year.

2 - Connolly is the first Irish teenager to score a Premier League double in over 20 years, with former Tottenham striker Robbie Keane having netted twice for Coventry City against Derby County in August 1999.

10 - Spurs have conceded 10 goals in their last two matches. It is the first time they have done so since December 1997, when they lost 6-1 to Chelsea before going down 4-0 to Coventry.

2:30 - Timed at two minutes and 30 seconds, Maupay's opener was Brighton's fastest goal in the Premier League.

100 - Youngster Connolly is the 100th player from the Republic of Ireland to score in the Premier League. The Republic of Ireland is now the fourth nation to have 100 or more different goalscorers in the league, along with England, France and Scotland.

8 - Lloris was taken off after eight minutes. It is the earliest a goalkeeper has been subbed off in a Premier League match since Lloris was replaced after four minutes in a match against Leicester City in March 2015.

NFL players typically thank colleagues, coaches and God after games, but Kirk Cousins was grateful to his 'brain coach' for a record-breaking day in London three years ago.

British fans are accustomed to watching sluggish, error-prone displays from tired teams in London yet Cousins, then with the Washington Redskins, bucked the trend when it comes to performances across the pond.

Jet lag appeared to be no issue for Cousins as he completed a franchise-record 38 passes for a career-best 458 yards and two touchdowns in a 27-27 tie with the Cincinnati Bengals.

It was no coincidence. Cousins had been preparing for the Transatlantic jaunt with Dr. Tim Royer, a neuropsychologist who had monitored data from around 750 nights of the quarterback's sleep and implemented methods to ensure he could quickly adjust when jumping across multiple time zones.

"I knew when he had too much light sleep, when he had a good amount of deep sleep, how many times he woke up in the night," Dr Royer told Omnisport.

"It was very interesting to see how his performance on gameday directly correlated to his sleep cycle. The quality of your sleep dramatically affects your production of testosterone.

"Testosterone is kind of like the goose that laid the golden egg in sports; if your testosterone is high, it makes you more confident, you have better muscle mass and you're more driven. The overall stamina that you have is incredible."

Dr. Royer had worked with the NBA's Orlando Magic, who travelled to London earlier in 2016, and was able to share his data on the impact of long-haul flights with Cousins and how his methods could speed up the adjustment process by "at least 50 per cent".

"If somebody does a trip like that, you're typically going to see the impact on their testosterone at somewhere around a 15-to-20 per cent drop off," Dr. Royer explained.

Dr. Royer theorised that for every hour travelled from west to east, it would take Cousins a day and a half to adjust, meaning that, without introducing methods to combat jet lag, the quarterback would need around a week from arriving in London to fully acclimatise due to daylight saving time.

Yet Cousins' preparations began the moment Washington's game against the Detroit Lions finished the week before.

"We told him, 'On the bus, stay away from the windows'," Dr. Royer said.

"In a room, get away from any exposed sunlight. Wear sunglasses.

"We introduced light therapy - much like you would use for seasonal-affective disorder - high-volume light.

"We started to move the light that he was exposed to with a bio light in the morning so he started waking up an hour earlier each day.

"It was still dark out in D.C. but we used blue light. In the human body, the circadian rhythm gets set by blue light.

"We increased his EEG [electroencephalogram] feedback so he was getting a lot of feedback on his brain, making sure it was calibrating correctly and introducing a slowing-down response in the body."

Dr. Royer thought Cousins was already "close to London time" by Thursday, the day the team actually boarded their flight for London.

Cousins' sleep cycles from Friday and Saturday night "were identical" to those he had in Washington, setting him up for a record-breaking day on Sunday.

"He was right on. I expected him to do well. It wasn't coincidental," Dr. Royer said.

This weekend the Oakland Raiders face the Chicago Bears in Premier League side Tottenham's stadium in the first of four NFL games in London this season.

Oakland arrived in England on Monday - a change from last year when they touched down in London two days before being beaten by the Seattle Seahawks.

The Bears, meanwhile, only landed in the English capital on Friday. So does the arrival time have an impact?

"The arrival time has very little to do [with it]," Dr. Royer argued.

"It's the work you do behind the scenes. Things like your pancreas, your digestive system, they're very rhythmic. They work on how you're releasing melatonin.

"Once you disturb that, it makes it very difficult to perform at a high, accurate level - whether it's basketball, football, whatever."

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