Real Madrid and Barcelona battle for Haaland – Paper Round

Five-way chase for Haaland

Spanish newspaper Marca reports on the five clubs who hope to sign Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund. Real Madrid and Barcelona are going head-to-head for the player, but there is also Premier League interest, with Manchester City and Chelsea also keen. Another possibility is Paris Saint-Germain, who may have to replace Kylian Mbappe should he depart this summer.

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Paper Round’s view: City are in serious need of signing a striker having seen Sergio Aguero and then Ferran Torres leave, and they also failed to land Harry Kane last summer. Haaland’s agent Mino Raiola will be delighted to see so much interest, as five major European clubs will be forced to pay up a healthy commission and signing-on bonus to secure his signature.

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‘Benzema is a leader’ – Ancelotti praises forward ahead of final

Juventus cannot afford Martial

The Mirror reports that Juventus cannot afford the fee and wage demands from Manchester United to sign Anthony Martial. Director Maurizio Arrivabene said: “With the current conditions, it’s not a feasible deal for us. “Considering certain numbers, there are no advanced talks – we don’t expect any discount from Man United.” Sevilla also failed with an earlier bid.

Paper Round’s view: It seems that Martial is now willing to play for the club again after the confusion over the weekend when Ralf Rangnick had the impression he did not wish to be picked. However there are many players ahead of him in the pecking order and he has rarely impressed this year – it would be a huge surprise if he was able to offer anything useful in the next few months.

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Mari and Kolasinac set to depart

Arsenal are set to see Sead Kolasinac and Pablo Mari join new clubs in the coming days. Following William Saliba and Matteo Guendouzi to Marseille is Kolasinac, with the 28-year-old set to sign an 18-month deal on the south French coast. Pablo Mari has struggled for minutes under Mikel Arteta this season and is on course to join Udinese for the rest of the season on loan.

Paper Round’s view: Kolasinac rarely caused trouble for the club but also rarely hit the required heights to hold down a regular place in the first team under Arteta, so he needed to be moved on, and Marseille are a handy outlet for Arsenal now. Mari was bought in during a hurried transfer period and it seems as if he was not ever going to be more than a stopgap.

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Everton to talk to Rooney and Lampard

Duncan Ferguson is yet again Everton’s caretaker manager, and Rafael Benitez’s departure means another new permanent manager is required. The Telegraph puts forward two names who will be considered by Bill Kenwright. The first is Wayne Rooney, the former Everton player, and Frank Lampard, who also has experience with Derby County before going on to Chelsea.

Paper Round’s view: Rooney clearly has deep ties to Everton but after his spell with Derby he is hard to judge because of the huge problems he has been dealing with in his time as manager. Lampard did well at Chelsea and Everton is not too much of a step down for his next gig, but he did not display any great tactical or motivational aptitude while at Stamford Bridge.

Read the full story

Transfers

Haaland says Dortmund ‘pushing’ for decision on future

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Youth football needs to start embracing rugby more adamantly

Despite studies indicating that injuries are sustained more frequently with rugby than football, the data is much closer than you’d expect for a sport that has its players continually bash into one another with zero pads on. Still, everybody agrees that the rugby-style of tackling is much safer than football. Some NFL teams have even made efforts to emphasize rugby-style form in the past in order to teach their players proper tackling form. Hell, Baker essentially admitted that rugby players perform better, safer tackles when he appeared on the Pat McAfee show a year ago.

That’s why it shocks me that Baker would perform a tackle on Akers like the one we saw last night. It shows just how ingrained poor tackling form has become into several football players’ mindsets. From when they first got into the sport at a young age, they were taught a certain way to tackle. They were brought up that way, earned scholarships playing that same way, essentially rewarded at times for maintaining these bad, unsafe habits. While it’s great to see NFL coaches and even some college coaches embrace the safety that rugby-style tackling can bring, it needs to be taught at a younger level. In fact, it should be the very first thing taught in youth football programs.

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As YouTube football analyst Brett Kollmann stated in the earlier pinned tweet, rugby-style tackling puts an emphasis on not only tackling with the shoulder, but tackling behind the runner. This type of tackling prevents head-on collisions and even if the offensive player doesn’t lower their head prior to contact, the technique still prevents head injuries from being sustained from collisions with a player’s thighs. We know how meaty NFL players’ quads can get. Ramming your head into those while the player is running full force, while not as bad as helmet-to-helmet contact, can still cause serious damage.

If someone in a rugby match attempted to tackle an opposing player the way Baker did last night, they’d be benched immediately. Proper form and safety is so prevalent and constantly enforced in rugby, it’s honestly a shame football doesn’t treat it the same way. When Seahawks’ head coach Pete Carroll started putting an emphasis on shoulder tackling in 2014, their concussion numbers dropped drastically the following year. There’s clearly a positive correlation between this style of tackling and the severity of concussions in football. So, maybe if you’re thinking about signing your kid up for football this upcoming Pop Warner season, having them watch rugby would be the best way to keep them safe. Also, making sure the coaches teach the children this style of tackling will likely prevent these types of injuries in the future.

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While obviously this technique won’t eliminate concussions in football altogether, it’s safe to say we, as fans, would like to see a world with as few moments like the one that happened with Baker last night as possible. Encouraging youth football programs to teach rugby-style tackling first and foremost would likely go a long way toward making that world a reality. 

Martial issues “resolved” according to Rangnick

Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick says any issues with striker Anthony Martial are now “resolved” after they held talks to clear the air.

It comes after Martial didn’t feature in Saturday’s Premier League match against Aston Villa, with Rangnick saying he “didn’t want to be in the squad”.
The France forward didn’t respond well to the comment, taking to Instagram to say he would “never refuse to play a match” for the club.

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His post went on to say, “I’ve been here for 7 years and I never disrespected and will never disrespect the club and the fans”.

However, with United preparing for their match with Brentford on Wednesday, Rangnick has revealed the problem is now sorted.

I had a conversation with him on Sunday. The matter is now resolved.

It’s still unknown whether Martial will feature at the Brentford Community Stadium.

“He didn’t train yesterday and the day before yesterday. He will probably train today and after training I will then take the decision if he is nominated or not. Let’s see what will happen there”, Rangnick said in his pre-match press conference on Tuesday.

Martial hasn’t played since the beginning of December, and since then has been the subject of transfer speculation linking him with a move away from Old Trafford – with the club reportedly turning down a move to Seville.

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Juve demolish Sampdoria to ease into quarter-finals

Juventus eased into the quarter-final stages of the Coppa Italia with a 4-1 win over Sampdoria at the Allianz Stadium.

Juan Cuadrado was captain on the night and he led by example, firing Juventus into the lead after 25 minutes.

He struck a free-kick on the edge of the box hard and low, assisted by a slight deflection, before rocketing beyond Wladimiro Falcone.

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Less than 60 seconds later Juventus doubled their lead through Alvaro Morata after a neat finish from 12 yards out, but after a speedy VAR check showed a foul in the build-up, the goal was ruled out.

Juventus’ lead was eventually doubled five minutes into the second period. A short corner found Cuadrado, who floated an inviting ball for Daniele Rugani to rise highest and deflect the ball beyond Falcone and into the far corner.

Sampdoria claimed a goal back just after the hour mark, Andrea Conti drilled a neat strike across goal which nestled into the bottom right corner.

Shortly before Sampdoria’s goal, Paulo Dybala was introduced and within five minutes of his arrival, restored the Old Lady’s two-goal cushion. Manuel Locatelli pounced on a mix-up at the back between Falcone and Bartosz Bereszynski, which allowed Dybala to latch onto a loose ball and fire home from close-range.

Despite signs of resilience from Sampdoria to get themselves back into the game, it was put beyond doubt as Alvaro Morata dispatched a penalty with ten minutes to play.

TALKING POINT – JUVENTUS MUST DO EVERYTHING TO KEEP HOLD OF DYBALA

Juventus’ main man Paulo Dybala’s contract talks with the club are unclear, and there are rumours he may not renew his deal to keep him at the Allianz Stadium.

He was rested tonight as the Old Lady find themselves in a difficult title race, and as Sampdoria crept back into tonight’s game to make the score 2-1 after a string of missed Juventus opportunities, Max Allegri luckily had his star man to call upon.

Five minutes after his introduction, he restored Juventus’ two-goal cushion and had a hand in some really impressive Juventus football as they went on to sweep Sampdoria aside and book their place in the next round of the Coppa Italia.

MAN OF THE MATCH – JUAN CUADRADO

A goal and an assist for tonight’s Juventus skipper capped off a superb performance by the Columbian. He was the driving force in this tie, with everything seemingly flowing through the wide man.

He blasted the host’s into the lead with his hard and low free-kick, and almost had another assist a minute later when he cleverly set up Alvaro Morata before the Spaniard’s goal was disallowed for a foul in a previous transition of play.

The 33-year-old suggested he still has plenty to offer. He had one of those games where he looked as if soemthing was going to happen every time he had the ball at his feet, and it usually did. He could have had a few assists to his name tonight, but depsite the scoreline Juventus weren’t at their best in front of goal.

MATCH RATINGS

JUVENTUS: Perlin 6, De Sciglio 6, Danilo 7, Alex Sandro 7, Rugani 8, Arthur 7, Cuadrado 9, Rabiot 6, Locatelli 8, Kulusevski 8, Morata 7.

Subs: Chiellini 6, Dybala 8, Jorge N/A, Bentancur 6, Aké 7

SAMPDORIA: Falcone 7, Thorsby 6, Augello 5, Torregrossa 6, Caputo 5, Conti 7, Askildsen 5, Bereszynski 5, Magnani 5, Murru 6, Rincon 5, Tufano 5

Subs: Ciervo N/A, Vieira 4, Dragusin N/A, Gabbiadini 5, Candreva 5

KEY MOMENTS

25’ – GOAL! JUVENTUS 1-0 SAMPDORIA (CUADRADO): What a finish! Cuadrado fires it low and hard and after what looks like a slight deflection, rockets past Falcone and Juventus take the lead.

27’ – GOAL DISALLOWED! – Morata has the ball in the back of the net immediately after the restart but after a quick VAR check showed a foul in the build-up, the goal is ruled out. It remains 1-0.

52’ – GOAL! JUVENTUS 2-0 SAMPDORIA (RUGANI): The ball is floated in by Cuadrado after another short Juventus corner, and Ragani rises highest to deflect the ball beyond Falcone and into the far corner.

63’ – GOAL! JUVENTUS 2-1 SAMPDORIA (CONTI): And just like that, Sampdoria are back in the game! Conti drills a superb strike across goal as the ball nestles into the far corner. The visitor’s back in it!

67’ – GOAL! JUVENTUS 3-1 SAMPDORIA (DYBALA): Minutes after his arrival, Dybala restores Juventus’ two-goal lead! It’s a mix-up at the back as Falcone plays it short but Locatelli is quick to intercept, allowing Dybala onto the loose ball to fire in Juventus’ third from close-range.

77’ – GOAL! JUVENTUS 4-1 SAMPDORIA (MORATA): Morata finally gets his goal! He fires his penalty into the bottom right corner. Game over!

KEY STAT

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Juventus v Sampdoria – Follow LIVE

Follow the Coppa Italia live Football match between Juventus and Sampdoria with Eurosport. The match starts at 21:00 on 18 January 2022.

Catch the latest Juventus and Sampdoria news and find up to date Football standings, results, top scorers and previous winners.
Football fans can find the latest Football news, interviews, expert commentary and watch free replays. See detailed profiles for Juventus and Sampdoria. Catch all the upcoming competitions. Make Eurosport your go-to source for sports online from Football to cycling, F1, winter sports and more. Enjoy live streaming of this season’s top sports competitions.

Chelsea held at Brighton as recent winless league run continues

Chelsea extended their winless run in the Premier League to four games after being held to a disappointing 1-1 draw at Brighton.

Thomas Tuchel, who recalled Mason Mount, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Jorginho, saw his side make a sluggish start with a clear lack of chemistry between Romelu Lukaku and Hakim Ziyech.

But the Moroccan made amends by giving the Blues the lead with an ambitious low shot from distance which beat Robert Sanchez at his near post.

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Graham Potter’s men had some bright moments but failed to register a shot on target in the first period. And the Seagulls should have equalised at the start of the second half when Danny Welbeck, who netted the equaliser against the Blues last month, was sent through on goal but he fired his shot wide.

The home side eventually got their rewards when a cleverly worked corner resulted in a bullet header from Adam Webster.

And the home side immediately brought on attackers Leandro Trossard and Neal Maupay and ended the game the stronger side, similar to the corresponding fixture, but were forced to settle for a point.

The reigning European champions, who have picked up two points out of 12, remain third in the table while draw specialists Brighton stay ninth.

TALKING POINT – Ziyech/Lukaku dynamic is not working.

The partnership did not work in the defeat to Manchester City at the weekend with the Belgian largely isolated. And it was a similar story today with the Moroccan’s through balls not matching the striker’s runs, leading to a stern exchange of words between them as they walked off the pitch at half-time.

It is clear that Lukaku prefers playing alongside another striker as he did at Inter Milan.

Mount was also anonymous after being recalled, giving Tuchel an issue in terms of creativity so it was surprising that he took until the 80th minute to make substitutions.

MAN OF THE MATCH – Adam Webster (Brighton)

The centre-back has formed a solid partnership with Dan Burn and the pair did well to stifle the threat of Lukaku. And he capped off his performance with a brilliant bullet header and nearly scored a second with a solo run.

Brighton’s English defender Adam Webster (L) starts to celebrate as his header beats Chelsea’s Spanish goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga (R) for their first goal during the English Premier League football match between Brighton and Hove Albion and Chelsea

Image credit: Getty Images

PLAYER RATINGS

BRIGHTON: Sanchez 5, Veltman 6, Webster 9, Burn 8, Cucurella 7, Lamptey 7, Gross 6, Mac Allister 6, Moder 6, Alzate 5, Welbeck 5. Subs: Maupay 5, Trossard 6, March n/a.

CHELSEA: Kepa 8, Rudiger 8, Silva 8, Alonso 5, Azpilicueta 5, Kante 5, Jorginho 6, Mount 4, Hudson-Odoi 5, Ziyech 7, Lukaku 6. Subs: Kovacic n/a, Werner n/a, Havertz n/a.

KEY MOMENTS

28′ – GOAL FOR CHELSEA! A speculative low shot from outside the box from Ziyech which sneaks into the bottom corner which the keeper cannot keep out.

45′ – BIG CHANCE! Lukaku tees up Hudson-Odoi who lashes it over from inside the area. Poor effort.

46′- CHANCE! Mac Allister threads it through to Welbeck in the box and from a tightish angle his effort is off target.

60′ – GOAL FOR BRIGHTON! Mac Allister’s deflected effort is pushed behind by Kepa. From the corner, a bullet header from the unmarked Webster into tbe roof of the net, that was unstoppable.

KEY STAT

Chelsea have never lost in 14 league meetings with Brighton (W11 D3), the most the Blues have faced an opponent without ever losing in their league history.

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Brighton v Chelsea – Follow LIVE

Follow the Premier League live Football match between Brighton & Hove Albion and Chelsea with Eurosport. The match starts at 21:00 on 18 January 2022.
Who will come out on top in the battle of the managers: Graham Potter or Thomas Tuchel? Find out by following our live matchcast.

Catch the latest Brighton & Hove Albion and Chelsea news and find up to date Football standings, results, top scorers and previous winners.
Football fans can find the latest Football news, interviews, expert commentary and watch free replays. See detailed profiles for Brighton & Hove Albion and Chelsea. Catch all the upcoming competitions. Make Eurosport your go-to source for sports online from Football to cycling, F1, winter sports and more. Enjoy live streaming of this season’s top sports competitions.
Tickets: Barclays Premier League official site

Stuttering Senegal progress as Group B winners as Malawi curse VAR

Senegal were left clinging on to top spot after a sluggish performance saw them held to a goalless draw by Malawi – who will be hoping they can progress as a best performing third placed team.

Malawi just needed a goal to change the whole outlook of the group, but they were left cursing VAR after having a very tight-looking penalty decision overturned in the second half.

After scoring just one goal in the group stage, Senegal won’t take a huge amount of confidence into the last-16, despite going through as table toppers of Group B.

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Guinea are through in second spot despite being beaten 2-1 by bottom side Zimbabwe – who knew they were already out after losing their first two matches in Cameroon.

Knowledge Musona headed in the opener for Zimbabwe, before Kudakwashe Mahachi doubled their advantage just before half time.

Liverpool midfielder Naby Keita pulled a goal back with a fierce strike just after the break, but they were unable to find any further goals, giving Zimbabwe their first win at the tournament in sixteen years.

Guinea were left grateful for Malawi’s deadlock against Senegal, and were also left praising the intervention of VAR on a dramatic final round of fixtures.

As well as dramatic, it was a historic day in the competition after Rwandan-born Salima Rhadia Mukansanga became the first woman to referee a match at the Africa Cup of Nations.

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Trauriges Dallas – Premiere für Stafford: Elf Erkenntnisse aus der Wild Card Round

Kaum war die Regular Season zu Ende, schon ging es mit den actiongeladenen Play-offs weiter. Und mächtig Action war auch wirklich drin – Top-Werte, Rekorde und Negativmarken inklusivs. Best of NFL-Play-offs 2022, Wild Card …

Haben als einziges Team ein Heimspiel an diesem Play-off-Wochenende verloren: Dak Prescott und die Cowboys.

Haben als einziges Team ein Heimspiel an diesem Play-off-Wochenende verloren: Dak Prescott und die Cowboys.

imago images/Icon SMI

1. Ehre, wem Ehre gebührt: Die erfolgreiche Laufbahn von Ben Roethlisberger hat an diesem Wochenende ein Ende gefunden. Der 39-jährige “Big Ben”, der zwei Super-Bowl-Ringe sein Eigen nennt, schied erwartungsgemäß und letztlich klar mit den Pittsburgh Steelers bei den Kansas City Chiefs aus (21:42).

2. Auf der anderen Seite standen natürlich feiernde Chiefs, die mal wieder die Künste von Patrick Mahomes bestaunen durften. Nach Anfangsproblemen warf der Star-Quarterback beim Duell mit den Steelers über 400 Yards und gleich fünf Touchdown-Pässe. Dieses Kunststück glückte Mahomes schon zum fünften Mal in seiner noch jungen Karriere (72 Einsätze) – kein anderer hat jemals mehr gepackt.

3. Zum Abschluss dieses Wild-Card-Wochenendes stand der Vergleich zwischen den Los Angeles Rams und den Arizona Cardinals an – und L.A. siegte nach einer starken Performance am Ende klar mit 34:11. Damit feierte der in den Play-offs mit den Detroit Lions stets glücklose Matthew Stafford endlich seinen ersten Erfolg in einer NFL-Endrunde. Der Quarterback war erst vor dieser Saison zu den Rams gestoßen.

4. Von den Cardinals kam an diesem Spieltag fast gar nichts – und am Anfang sogar wirklich gar nichts: Keiner der ersten acht (Drives) mündete in ein First Down, es hieß stets entweder Punt, Fumble oder Interception.

5. Ein großes Drama gab es in Dallas zu bestaunen: Die heimischen Cowboys lagen lange Zeit klar und auch verdientermaßen zurück, machten es aber nochmals spannend – nur um am Ende doch mit 17:23 gegen die San Francisco 49ers zu verlieren.

6. Apropos Niners: Auch wenn deren Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo oft belächelt wird, hat der Spielmacher seit 2016 dochüber 70 Prozent seiner Spiele gewonnen. Besser sind in diesem Zeitraum nur Lamar Jackson (71 Prozent), Tom Brady (78) und Patrick Mahomes (79).

7. Tom Brady ist mal wieder in den Play-offs vertreten – mit 44 Jahren. Und der siebenmalige Champion hat mit seinen Tampa Bay Buccaneers den Philadelphia Eagles beim klaren 31:15 überhaupt keine Chance gelassen. Vielmehr baute der erst 2020 zu den Bucs gekommene Ex-Patriot seine starke Bilanz aus: In seiner gesamten Karriere hat “TB12” nun bereits zehn NFC-Teams in den Play-offs besiegt – und das, obwohl Brady erst zwei Spielzeiten fest in der NFC ist. Zum Vergleich: Aaron Rodgers von den Green Bay Packers kommt ebenfalls auf zehn Siege gegen NFC-Teams – in 14 Jahren.

8. Damit steht Brady nun bei 35 Play-off-Siegen in seiner langen Karriere – mehr haben nur die Pittsburgh Steelers (36), die Green Bay Packers (36) und die New England Patriots (37) als Team (!) in ihrer gesamten NFL-Geschichte.

9. Nochmals zurück zu den 49ers: Kicker Robbie Gould, der schon für die Chicago Bears und New York Giants gespielt hat, kommt derzeit auf eine Bilanz von 18 verwandelten Field Goal in den Play-offs – und das bei genau 18 Versuchen. Eine 100-Prozent-Quote also.

10. Nach 31 Jahren hat das Warten ein Ende: Die Cincinnati Bengals (26:19 gegen die Oakland Raiders) haben wieder ein Play-off-Spiel gewonnen.

11. Was zudem noch auffiel in dieser ersten Play-off-Runde: Von den sechs Partien gewann gleich fünfmal das gastgebende Team – nur eben die Dallas Cowboys nicht. Die Texaner nutzten den vermeintlichen Vorteil vor eigenen Fans also nicht.

Zum Thema: Dramatisches Finish in Dallas! 49ers schalten Cowboys aus

Trauriges Dallas und Pittsburgh – Premiere für Stafford: Elf Erkenntnisse aus der Wild Card Round

Kaum war die Regular Season zu Ende, schon ging es mit den actiongeladenen Play-offs weiter. Und mächtig Action war auch wirklich drin – Top-Werte, Rekorde und Negativmarken inklusivs. Best of NFL-Play-offs 2022, Wild Card …

Haben als einziges Team ein Heimspiel an diesem Play-off-Wochenende verloren: Dak Prescott und die Cowboys.

Haben als einziges Team ein Heimspiel an diesem Play-off-Wochenende verloren: Dak Prescott und die Cowboys.

imago images/Icon SMI

1. Ehre, wem Ehre gebührt: Die erfolgreiche Laufbahn von Ben Roethlisberger hat an diesem Wochenende ein Ende gefunden. Der 39-jährige “Big Ben”, der zwei Super-Bowl-Ringe sein Eigen nennt, schied erwartungsgemäß und letztlich klar mit den Pittsburgh Steelers bei den Kansas City Chiefs aus (21:42).

2. Auf der anderen Seite standen natürlich feiernde Chiefs, die mal wieder die Künste von Patrick Mahomes bestaunen durften. Nach Anfangsproblemen warf der Star-Quarterback beim Duell mit den Steelers über 400 Yards und gleich fünf Touchdown-Pässe. Dieses Kunststück glückte Mahomes schon zum fünften Mal in seiner noch jungen Karriere (72 Einsätze) – kein anderer hat jemals mehr gepackt.

3. Zum Abschluss dieses Wild-Card-Wochenendes stand der Vergleich zwischen den Los Angeles Rams und den Arizona Cardinals an – und L.A. siegte nach einer starken Performance am Ende klar mit 34:11. Damit feierte der in den Play-offs mit den Detroit Lions stets glücklose Matthew Stafford endlich seinen ersten Erfolg in einer NFL-Endrunde. Der Quarterback war erst vor dieser Saison zu den Rams gestoßen.

4. Von den Cardinals kam an diesem Spieltag fast gar nichts – und am Anfang sogar wirklich gar nichts: Keiner der ersten acht (Drives) mündete in ein First Down, es hieß stets entweder Punt, Fumble oder Interception.

5. Ein großes Drama gab es in Dallas zu bestaunen: Die heimischen Cowboys lagen lange Zeit klar und auch verdientermaßen zurück, machten es aber nochmals spannend – nur um am Ende doch mit 17:23 gegen die San Francisco 49ers zu verlieren.

6. Apropos Niners: Auch wenn deren Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo oft belächelt wird, hat der Spielmacher seit 2016 dochüber 70 Prozent seiner Spiele gewonnen. Besser sind in diesem Zeitraum nur Lamar Jackson (71 Prozent), Tom Brady (78) und Patrick Mahomes (79).

7. Tom Brady ist mal wieder in den Play-offs vertreten – mit 44 Jahren. Und der siebenmalige Champion hat mit seinen Tampa Bay Buccaneers den Philadelphia Eagles beim klaren 31:15 überhaupt keine Chance gelassen. Vielmehr baute der erst 2020 zu den Bucs gekommene Ex-Patriot seine starke Bilanz aus: In seiner gesamten Karriere hat “TB12” nun bereits zehn NFC-Teams in den Play-offs besiegt – und das, obwohl Brady erst zwei Spielzeiten fest in der NFC ist. Zum Vergleich: Aaron Rodgers von den Green Bay Packers kommt ebenfalls auf zehn Siege gegen NFC-Teams – in 14 Jahren.

8. Damit steht Brady nun bei 35 Play-off-Siegen in seiner langen Karriere – mehr haben nur die Pittsburgh Steelers (36), die Green Bay Packers (36) und die New England Patriots (37) als Team (!) in ihrer gesamten NFL-Geschichte.

9. Nochmals zurück zu den 49ers: Kicker Robbie Gould, der schon für die Chicago Bears und New York Giants gespielt hat, kommt derzeit auf eine Bilanz von 18 verwandelten Field Goal in den Play-offs – und das bei genau 18 Versuchen. Eine 100-Prozent-Quote also.

10. Nach 31 Jahren hat das Warten ein Ende: Die Cincinnati Bengals (26:19 gegen die Oakland Raiders) haben wieder ein Play-off-Spiel gewonnen.

11. Was zudem noch auffiel in dieser ersten Play-off-Runde: Von den sechs Partien gewann gleich fünfmal das gastgebende Team – nur eben die Dallas Cowboys nicht. Die Texaner nutzten den vermeintlichen Vorteil vor eigenen Fans also nicht.

Zum Thema: Dramatisches Finish in Dallas! 49ers schalten Cowboys aus