From the Back Pages, December 14: Louis van Gaal to send Man Utd starlet Adnan Januzaj out on loan in January

From the back pages

From the back pages

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MANCHESTER UNITED boss Louis van Gaal is keen to loan out winger Adnan Januzaj in January window. (The Express)

On the eve of the most famous fixture in the English football calendar, Rene Meulensteen is worrying about the “identity crisis” of his old club Manchester United, who host Liverpool on Sunday. Meulensteen is also concerned about the “identity” of England, following the release of the FA’s DNA document, and believes the national team need a tactical revolution, focusing on circulating the ball quicker by breeding a generation with the DNA of Paul Scholes. (The Telegraph)

Maybe Arsene Wenger has gone on too long at Arsenal, but on nights like this you have to think most clubs would welcome a ‘crisis’ like theirs. Newcastle, the Premier League’s form team, were made to look distinctly ordinary by an Arsenal side that, apart from a few glimpses of anxiety, played with poise and purpose as they secured their second 4-1 in a week since the notorious defeat at Stoke. (The Independent)

This was an ugly win rather prised from stubborn and awkward opponents but, in the end, Chelsea will be unconcerned as to how it was chiselled out. Their three-point advantage at the top of the Premier League is retained, a pristine home record extended and they may actually take heart from the reality that rivals can these days be ground into submission when they cannot be passed off the park. (The Guardian)

Frank Lampard underlined the importance of Manchester City keeping him until the end of the season with the goal that made it seven wins in a row for the champions. (The Mirror)

England surrendered the one-day series to Sri Lanka in Pallekele on a day of personal calamity for Alastair Cook. The England captain dropped Kumar Sangakkara on the way to a wonderful hundred and then fell to the second ball he faced. Speaking after the match Peter Moores, the England coach, appeared to suggest that Cook’s place in the side may yet be reviewed. (The Times)

Floyd Mayweather Jnr has named May 2 as the date for his shotgun wedding with Manny Pacquiao. (Daily Mail)