Danny Rose, Kern Cupid and Tim Flowers lead our Valentine's Day XI

Sport360 staff 14/02/2018

It's February 14 and love is in the air on Valentine's Day, so Sport360 has put together a "Hearts" XI in an unorthodox 5-1-4 formation.

Former England striker Teddy Sheringham has been named as manager of the side given that he is thirsty for a recall to management after being sacked by Indian side ATK last month.

Meanwhile, one late inclusion to the ranks is former Ireland star Ian Harte, who has come out of retirement to add some pace to the defence.

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Jose Mourinho backs VAR with 'adjustments' ahead of Man United's FA Cup tie

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Jose Mourinho has backed the VAR system, with reservations.

Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho backs the controversial video assistant referee system because it helps officials make “fair decisions”, but says it needs adjustments to preserve the flow of the game.

United will play in a match in which VAR is being trialled for the first time at Huddersfield in Saturday’s FA Cup fifth-round tie.

VAR has been used in the competition already this season, most notably when West Brom won 3-2 at Liverpool in the fourth round, as well as in the League Cup.

The system reviews key moments linked to goals, penalty decisions, red-card incidents and cases of mistaken identity.

Asked for his views on VAR, Mourinho told United’s in-house channel MUTV: “When people ask us if we like it, if we don’t like it, if we agree with it or don’t agree with it, I think honestly it’s a question for the referees.

“They want to perform the best they can. They don’t like to make mistakes. And sometimes they make mistakes because it’s a human mistake and you cannot go over it unless you have some technological support.

“So if the referees are happy with that technological support, then, yes, let’s go for the VAR. I think, from my perspective, I like the feeling.”

But the United boss said tweaks were needed to ensure the technology does not interrupt the rhythm of the game.

“Of course they need adjustments,” he said. “They need to make sure that they don’t change the dynamic of the game too much, the emotion of the game too much – people waiting a couple of minutes to know if they can jump (and celebrate) because it was a goal.

VAR was in the centre of a storm during the 4th-round tie between Liverpool and West Brom.

VAR was in the centre of a storm during the 4th-round tie between Liverpool and West Brom.

“But from my professional perspective, I like the feeling of a right decision is coming. It’s a penalty or not a penalty, it’s handball or not handball, it’s a red card or not a red card. I think a fair decision is a feeling that I like.”

The VAR system took centre stage during the Liverpool-West Brom clash on January 27. It was used three times in the first half, including the first time in English football that a referee used a pitchside television replay.

Although it eventually led to correct decisions being made, questions were asked about the process, particularly the amount of time it took.

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Former Man United and Celtic midfielder Liam Miller dies aged 36

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Former Celtic, Manchester United and Republic of Ireland midfielder Liam Miller died on Friday night at the age of 36 after a battle with pancreatic cancer.

Miller grew up in Ovens a village in County Cork, and although he played Gaelic football, his real passion was soccer, with a fondness for Celtic taken from his father Billy, a Scotsman from Motherwell.

He joined the Parkhead club at the age of 15 and, on May 21, 2000, in Kenny Dalglish’s last game as Hoops manager, he made his debut as a second-half substitute in a 2-0 home win over Dundee United.

A loan spell at Aarhus in Denmark followed and the talented playmaker with good pace and mobility did not break into the Celtic first team properly until 2003/04 under Martin O’Neill and he picked up a Ladbrokes Premiership medal that season.

Miller, a quiet man not prone to breast-beating, initially took some stick from the Parkhead fans when he controversially rejected the offer of a new deal from the Glasgow club to sign for Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United on a ‘Bosman’ at the end of the season.

O’Neill was pragmatic: “We’re all disappointed that Liam’s going to be leaving. But contrary to what some people might think, I have not got a problem playing him. Whatever reaction he’ll get from the Celtic fans I think Liam will be able to cope with it.”

Before he left Parkhead he won the first of 21 caps with the Republic of Ireland in a 2-1 win over Czech Republic at Lansdowne Road – “getting onto the pitch was definitely one of the proudest moments of my life, I’ve always dreamed about it and it came true” – and he scored once for his country, in a 3-0 win over Sweden in 2006.
Miller struggled to establish himself in a United central midfield and he had a loan spell at Leeds United in 2005.

The Irishman joined Sunderland in 2006 and spent three years with the Black Cats, then bossed by former United team-mate Roy Keane, winning the football League Championship in 2006/07 before moving to Queens Park Rangers in January, 2009 only to be released that May.

The next move was back to Scotland where he signed for Hibernian, staying at Easter Road for two seasons before moving to Australia’s A-League where he joined Perth Glory.

After spells at Brisbane Roar and Melbourne City he returned to Ireland in 2015 to join Cork City. A year later he was off to Wilmington Hammerheads in the USA before returning to his hometown last November after being diagnosed with his illness.

In an interview published in the Irish Examiner in February, 2015, following his return to Cork City, Miller refuted any notion that his career had not reached the heights it had promised.

“I genuinely look back and think, ‘I played for Celtic’, my boyhood club,” he said.

“I dreamed of playing for Man United and I got that opportunity as well. I don’t know how many other people can say they played for their two childhood clubs, or even one childhood club. Of course, I would have loved to play more games, don’t get me wrong, but I got to learn from some of the best players ever. Looking back, it was wonderful.

“Growing up for me, I just wanted to play football. And as I got better and better, the opportunities came around for me. Nothing’s ever guaranteed – you could get an injury in the morning, touch wood – but, I worked my socks off and the hard work paid off for me.”

Amid a flood of tributes, Celtic’s official Twitter account said:

“We are incredibly saddened to hear of the passing of former Hibernian midfielder Liam Miller. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this time,” read Hibs’ official Twitter account, while former Celtic team-mate Mark Burchill said on his Twitter account: “Can’t believe my old team-mate Liam miller @CelticFC has passed away today.. taken far too soon.. horrific news.. thoughts and prayers with his family at this time #RipLiam”.

Miller is survived by his wife Clare and three children Kory, Leo and Belle.

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