The Republic of Ireland international won a first-half penalty when he went down under a challenge from Joey O’Brien and then added further to Allardyce’s ire by stepping up from 12 yards to put away his fourth of the season. Allardyce felt the former Manchester United junior had influenced referee Kevin Friend by going down too easily as O’Brien put his hands on him and was not afraid to say so afterwards. Beaten West Ham manager Sam Allardyce accused match-winner Robbie Brady of buying Hull their 1-0 victory at the KC Stadium. Press Association They have failed to win in the Premier League since the opening day as a consequence of it and have five points from six games. “It’s a worrying trend but it’s not as if we’ve gone away from home and not created chances,” he said. Hull manager Steve Bruce has no such worries. Since an opening-day chasing at Chelsea his side have accrued 10 points as a result of carrying over their dogged displays from the Championship last season. Even then they relied on a lot of narrow wins, like this one, but their defence was their hallmark and so it proved again as they muscled up to keep the Hammers out. That Liam Rosenior left the field with blood pouring from his face was typical of their attitude. “I couldn’t be more pleased. The big decisions have maybe gone our way but you can’t mask that we created the better chances,” said Bruce. “Their goalkeeper made more saves than mine, we hit the bar, the post but the talking point is the two decisions that went our way. “I have seen the handball from Jake Livermore four or five times and can’t see if it was deliberate or if it hit him. “From where the ref was standing and the linesman, they can’t give it. The pen, I’ve not seen it yet. We might have got the decisions but were still the better side on the day.” Away from the furore of whether he dived or not, Brady is making a real impact on Hull’s season. The left-footer has been something of a surprise package so far and his manager is even more pleased considering he is playing with a problem. “He’s got a stomach problem which is causing us concern,” Bruce said. “Considering he has a problem, it’s admirable that he keeps wanting to play. We might have to look at how long we can go for without surgery. “But players like him, Stephen Quinn, Rosenior and George Boyd (Championship survivors) are enjoying trying to be Premier League players. We know how difficult the next six months will be, but we will make the best fist of it we can.” He also told his own players they were responsible for the loss too – poor finishing their greatest crime – while another decision not to give a second spot-kick for an alleged handball by Jake Livermore also got his back up. “Not finishing off our chances was a big problem for us,” he said. “The ultimate failing we have away from home is not turning our chances into goals. “Again that cost us something out of the game, irrespective of the two poor decisions the referee has given. There were two really poor decisions, but we still should have got something by capitalising on the chances we created. “That’s the disappointing thing for me and is a massive problem for the players and their responsibility to be clinical.” On Friend he added: “The other side is two very poor decisions in terms of major decisions by the referee. One, Brady takes a simulation on a slight contact with Joey O’Brien when the ball is not near him or the goal. He buys the penalty and the referee falls for it. “Livermore puts his arm out and knocks the ball for a corner but the referee doesn’t see it and doesn’t give us a penalty. So it’s our responsibility for not finishing our chances and the referees as well for us losing the game.” The remaining narrative of Allardyce’s assessment was centred on his side’s anaemic final-third play.
Fiji is threatening to boycott this year’s Glasgow Commonwealth Games after being told its high-profile rugby sevens side cannot take part, the Pacific island nation’s sports chief warned today.It comes just 10 days after Fiji was readmitted to the Games fold, ending years of isolation following a 2006 military coup.But the return was approved after the draw for Glasgow was completed, with the qualification rules making no provision for late entries. The Fiji netball team has been shut out for the same reason. Fiji are one of the biggest drawcards in world rugby sevens, winning Commonwealth silver in 1998 and 2002 and claiming bronze in Melbourne in 2006, the last time they competed in the event.”Our sevens rugby team has proven to the world by winning the World Cup twice that we can win medals at the Commonwealth Games,” Fiji Association of Sports and National Olympic Committee (Fasanoc) president Reg Sanday told AFP.”Imagine Brazil going to the Olympics without its football team or Jamaica running at the Games without world champion Usain Bolt? “Fasanoc will have a meeting tomorrow (Wednesday) to discuss a the boycott. We are upset by the decision by the Games committee to exclude our rugby sevens and netball teams.”In a letter to Fasanoc, Commonwealth Games Federation chief executive Michael Hooper said the Fiji rugby and netball teams could not be accepted because of “operational difficulties” in redoing the draws.The Commonwealth Games run from July 23 to August 3. – AFP, March 25, 2014.
Former Barcelona goalkeeper Victor Valdes has accepted an offer to join Manchester United.The Spain international, who has been training with United in his bid to recover from a serious knee injury, has agreed an 18-month contract.Valdes, 32, won six La Liga and three Champions League titles with Barcelona, before leaving at the end of last season when his contract expired.The deal could lead to reserve keeper Anders Lindegaard leaving Old Trafford.It also poses a question about the future of 24-year-old first-choice goalkeeper David De Gea, who was the club’s player of the year last season and has excelled again this term.His contract is due to expire in 2016, although senior United sources have previously said they were relaxed about him signing an extension to that deal. Before last season started, Valdes confirmed that it would be his final one at the Nou Camp, although his campaign ended in March when he tore his anterior cruciate ligament, an injury that kept him out of the World Cup.Manchester United are third in the Premier League, nine points behind joint leaders Chelsea and Manchester City.De Gea has played in every match for United this season, but conceded four in the League Cup defeat at MK Dons in August and five in thePremier League loss to Leicester on 21 September.However, the defensive record has improved in the last few months with the club only letting in seven goals in their last 13 matches in all competitions.Denmark international Lindegaard, 30, arrived at Old Trafford in a £3.5m deal in January 2011, but has only made 19 Premier League appearances. The other two goalkeeping options are 21-year-old Sam Johnstone, who is on loan at Doncaster, and 24-year-old Ben Amos, who was criticised by United boss Louis van Gaal for letting in Miralem Pjanic’s 60-yard lob against Roma in pre-season.