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Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua after the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua and Joseph Parker go head to head during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua after the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Joseph Parker during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua and Joseph Parker go head to head during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua and Joseph Parker go head to head during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua and Joseph Parker go head to head during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua, promoter Eddie Hearn and promoter David Higgins during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference

Boxing - Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Press Conference - London, Britain - January 16, 2018 Anthony Joshua during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Great Premier League surges that give Manchester United (a glimmer of) hope in the title race

Manchester United's 3-0 win over Stoke City on Monday has raised hopes that Jose Mourinho's side might - just might - be able to claw back league leaders Manchester City, who suffered their first league defeat of the season at Anfield on Sunday. While victory at Anfield could have sent Pep Guardiola's team 18 points clear at the summit, those recent results instead mean the gap has been reduced to 12 points. With United's winning streak growing, is there any chance that they can claw back the deficit and pull off an unlikely Premier League title triumph? History suggests there just might be. Teams placed second or lower in the table at the turn of the New Year have gone on to lift the Premier League trophy on no fewer than a dozen occasions. Can United's 2017/18 crop join them?  Here are the greatest New Year surges to give Manchester United hope... 12-point deficit Manchester United (1995/96) As the end of January 1996 approached, Kevin Keegan's Newcastle United side looked to be running away with the title in receipt of a 12-point lead over Manchester United, who sat third. Then the wheels totally fell off. While United kept plugging away in some style - dropping just four points from their final 15 games - Newcastle wilted under the pressure. By early April Keegan's team had lost five of their previous eight matches and their grip on the Premier League title had gone. United went on to win the league by four points. A young David Beckham and Gary Neville celebrate winning the title in 1996 Credit: getty images Arsenal (1997/98) Just two seasons after they had overturned a 12-point deficit, United relinquished the same advantage to cede the title to Arsenal. Sir Alex Ferguson's side were seven points clear of Chelsea at the turn of the year, but the gap to eventual champions Arsenal was even greater, with Arsene Wenger's team languishing in sixth. The gap remained until late February when Arsenal embarked on an incredible streak that included a a 10-game winning run to wrap up the league title with two games to spare. Arsenal completed a Premier League and FA Cup double in 1998 Credit: pa Nine-point deficit Manchester City (2013/14) The end of the Premier League season was just a fortnight away and Liverpool sat pretty at the top of the table with a nine-point lead over eventual champions Manchester City (who had games in hand). What happened next is something that Liverpool will struggle to shake off until the day they end their ever-growing title drought. Despite Steven Gerrard's efforts, the Merseyside club did indeed let their lead slip, losing against Chelsea and only managing to draw at Crystal Palace in their penultimate match of the season. By the time of their final fixture, Liverpool had relinquished their advantage to a Manchester City side who did not drop a point in their final six matches. Steven Gerrard paid the price for his slip against Chelsea in 2014 Credit: getty images Eight-point deficit Manchester United (2002/03) By the middle of January, Manchester United found themselves in fourth place and nine points off league leaders Arsenal. Their only hope was to keep winning and hope those above them made mistakes. Which is exactly what happened. Ferguson's side went undefeated from Boxing Day to the end of the season, claiming top spot in mid-April and going on to win the title by five points. Manchester United went on a brilliant streak in the second half of the 2002/03 season Credit: getty images Manchester United (2008/09) A fine first half of the season meant Liverpool sat top of the table at the end of 2008, with an advantage over Manchester United that had stretched to eight points by January 10th. United had games in hand, but a poor start meant they had yet to rise higher than third in the table all season. Three successive draws against Stoke City, Everton and Wigan Athletic meant Liverpool's grip at the top disappeared and, courtesy of an 11-game winning run, United pounced. The title was eventually won by four points. Manchester City (2011/12) Agueroooooooooooooooooooooooo! The Premier League season was reaching its climax in the second week of April when Roberto Mancini, the Manchester City manager, verbally conceded the title to Manchester United, who had an eight-point lead on them at the top of the table. Sergio Aguero secured the most remarkable Premier League triumph in 2012 Credit: getty images A run of one win in four - including defeat at Manchester City - saw United falter, which allowed Mancini's side to win the title on the final day of the season in the most dramatic fashion courtesy of injury time goals from Edin Dzeko and Sergio Aguero.

Great Premier League surges that give Manchester United (a glimmer of) hope in the title race

Manchester United's 3-0 win over Stoke City on Monday has raised hopes that Jose Mourinho's side might - just might - be able to claw back league leaders Manchester City, who suffered their first league defeat of the season at Anfield on Sunday. While victory at Anfield could have sent Pep Guardiola's team 18 points clear at the summit, those recent results instead mean the gap has been reduced to 12 points. With United's winning streak growing, is there any chance that they can claw back the deficit and pull off an unlikely Premier League title triumph? History suggests there just might be. Teams placed second or lower in the table at the turn of the New Year have gone on to lift the Premier League trophy on no fewer than a dozen occasions. Can United's 2017/18 crop join them?  Here are the greatest New Year surges to give Manchester United hope... 12-point deficit Manchester United (1995/96) As the end of January 1996 approached, Kevin Keegan's Newcastle United side looked to be running away with the title in receipt of a 12-point lead over Manchester United, who sat third. Then the wheels totally fell off. While United kept plugging away in some style - dropping just four points from their final 15 games - Newcastle wilted under the pressure. By early April Keegan's team had lost five of their previous eight matches and their grip on the Premier League title had gone. United went on to win the league by four points. A young David Beckham and Gary Neville celebrate winning the title in 1996 Credit: getty images Arsenal (1997/98) Just two seasons after they had overturned a 12-point deficit, United relinquished the same advantage to cede the title to Arsenal. Sir Alex Ferguson's side were seven points clear of Chelsea at the turn of the year, but the gap to eventual champions Arsenal was even greater, with Arsene Wenger's team languishing in sixth. The gap remained until late February when Arsenal embarked on an incredible streak that included a a 10-game winning run to wrap up the league title with two games to spare. Arsenal completed a Premier League and FA Cup double in 1998 Credit: pa Nine-point deficit Manchester City (2013/14) The end of the Premier League season was just a fortnight away and Liverpool sat pretty at the top of the table with a nine-point lead over eventual champions Manchester City (who had games in hand). What happened next is something that Liverpool will struggle to shake off until the day they end their ever-growing title drought. Despite Steven Gerrard's efforts, the Merseyside club did indeed let their lead slip, losing against Chelsea and only managing to draw at Crystal Palace in their penultimate match of the season. By the time of their final fixture, Liverpool had relinquished their advantage to a Manchester City side who did not drop a point in their final six matches. Steven Gerrard paid the price for his slip against Chelsea in 2014 Credit: getty images Eight-point deficit Manchester United (2002/03) By the middle of January, Manchester United found themselves in fourth place and nine points off league leaders Arsenal. Their only hope was to keep winning and hope those above them made mistakes. Which is exactly what happened. Ferguson's side went undefeated from Boxing Day to the end of the season, claiming top spot in mid-April and going on to win the title by five points. Manchester United went on a brilliant streak in the second half of the 2002/03 season Credit: getty images Manchester United (2008/09) A fine first half of the season meant Liverpool sat top of the table at the end of 2008, with an advantage over Manchester United that had stretched to eight points by January 10th. United had games in hand, but a poor start meant they had yet to rise higher than third in the table all season. Three successive draws against Stoke City, Everton and Wigan Athletic meant Liverpool's grip at the top disappeared and, courtesy of an 11-game winning run, United pounced. The title was eventually won by four points. Manchester City (2011/12) Agueroooooooooooooooooooooooo! The Premier League season was reaching its climax in the second week of April when Roberto Mancini, the Manchester City manager, verbally conceded the title to Manchester United, who had an eight-point lead on them at the top of the table. Sergio Aguero secured the most remarkable Premier League triumph in 2012 Credit: getty images A run of one win in four - including defeat at Manchester City - saw United falter, which allowed Mancini's side to win the title on the final day of the season in the most dramatic fashion courtesy of injury time goals from Edin Dzeko and Sergio Aguero.

Great Premier League surges that give Manchester United (a glimmer of) hope in the title race

Manchester United's 3-0 win over Stoke City on Monday has raised hopes that Jose Mourinho's side might - just might - be able to claw back league leaders Manchester City, who suffered their first league defeat of the season at Anfield on Sunday. While victory at Anfield could have sent Pep Guardiola's team 18 points clear at the summit, those recent results instead mean the gap has been reduced to 12 points. With United's winning streak growing, is there any chance that they can claw back the deficit and pull off an unlikely Premier League title triumph? History suggests there just might be. Teams placed second or lower in the table at the turn of the New Year have gone on to lift the Premier League trophy on no fewer than a dozen occasions. Can United's 2017/18 crop join them?  Here are the greatest New Year surges to give Manchester United hope... 12-point deficit Manchester United (1995/96) As the end of January 1996 approached, Kevin Keegan's Newcastle United side looked to be running away with the title in receipt of a 12-point lead over Manchester United, who sat third. Then the wheels totally fell off. While United kept plugging away in some style - dropping just four points from their final 15 games - Newcastle wilted under the pressure. By early April Keegan's team had lost five of their previous eight matches and their grip on the Premier League title had gone. United went on to win the league by four points. A young David Beckham and Gary Neville celebrate winning the title in 1996 Credit: getty images Arsenal (1997/98) Just two seasons after they had overturned a 12-point deficit, United relinquished the same advantage to cede the title to Arsenal. Sir Alex Ferguson's side were seven points clear of Chelsea at the turn of the year, but the gap to eventual champions Arsenal was even greater, with Arsene Wenger's team languishing in sixth. The gap remained until late February when Arsenal embarked on an incredible streak that included a a 10-game winning run to wrap up the league title with two games to spare. Arsenal completed a Premier League and FA Cup double in 1998 Credit: pa Nine-point deficit Manchester City (2013/14) The end of the Premier League season was just a fortnight away and Liverpool sat pretty at the top of the table with a nine-point lead over eventual champions Manchester City (who had games in hand). What happened next is something that Liverpool will struggle to shake off until the day they end their ever-growing title drought. Despite Steven Gerrard's efforts, the Merseyside club did indeed let their lead slip, losing against Chelsea and only managing to draw at Crystal Palace in their penultimate match of the season. By the time of their final fixture, Liverpool had relinquished their advantage to a Manchester City side who did not drop a point in their final six matches. Steven Gerrard paid the price for his slip against Chelsea in 2014 Credit: getty images Eight-point deficit Manchester United (2002/03) By the middle of January, Manchester United found themselves in fourth place and nine points off league leaders Arsenal. Their only hope was to keep winning and hope those above them made mistakes. Which is exactly what happened. Ferguson's side went undefeated from Boxing Day to the end of the season, claiming top spot in mid-April and going on to win the title by five points. Manchester United went on a brilliant streak in the second half of the 2002/03 season Credit: getty images Manchester United (2008/09) A fine first half of the season meant Liverpool sat top of the table at the end of 2008, with an advantage over Manchester United that had stretched to eight points by January 10th. United had games in hand, but a poor start meant they had yet to rise higher than third in the table all season. Three successive draws against Stoke City, Everton and Wigan Athletic meant Liverpool's grip at the top disappeared and, courtesy of an 11-game winning run, United pounced. The title was eventually won by four points. Manchester City (2011/12) Agueroooooooooooooooooooooooo! The Premier League season was reaching its climax in the second week of April when Roberto Mancini, the Manchester City manager, verbally conceded the title to Manchester United, who had an eight-point lead on them at the top of the table. Sergio Aguero secured the most remarkable Premier League triumph in 2012 Credit: getty images A run of one win in four - including defeat at Manchester City - saw United falter, which allowed Mancini's side to win the title on the final day of the season in the most dramatic fashion courtesy of injury time goals from Edin Dzeko and Sergio Aguero.

Great Premier League surges that give Manchester United (a glimmer of) hope in the title race

Manchester United's 3-0 win over Stoke City on Monday has raised hopes that Jose Mourinho's side might - just might - be able to claw back league leaders Manchester City, who suffered their first league defeat of the season at Anfield on Sunday. While victory at Anfield could have sent Pep Guardiola's team 18 points clear at the summit, those recent results instead mean the gap has been reduced to 12 points. With United's winning streak growing, is there any chance that they can claw back the deficit and pull off an unlikely Premier League title triumph? History suggests there just might be. Teams placed second or lower in the table at the turn of the New Year have gone on to lift the Premier League trophy on no fewer than a dozen occasions. Can United's 2017/18 crop join them?  Here are the greatest New Year surges to give Manchester United hope... 12-point deficit Manchester United (1995/96) As the end of January 1996 approached, Kevin Keegan's Newcastle United side looked to be running away with the title in receipt of a 12-point lead over Manchester United, who sat third. Then the wheels totally fell off. While United kept plugging away in some style - dropping just four points from their final 15 games - Newcastle wilted under the pressure. By early April Keegan's team had lost five of their previous eight matches and their grip on the Premier League title had gone. United went on to win the league by four points. A young David Beckham and Gary Neville celebrate winning the title in 1996 Credit: getty images Arsenal (1997/98) Just two seasons after they had overturned a 12-point deficit, United relinquished the same advantage to cede the title to Arsenal. Sir Alex Ferguson's side were seven points clear of Chelsea at the turn of the year, but the gap to eventual champions Arsenal was even greater, with Arsene Wenger's team languishing in sixth. The gap remained until late February when Arsenal embarked on an incredible streak that included a a 10-game winning run to wrap up the league title with two games to spare. Arsenal completed a Premier League and FA Cup double in 1998 Credit: pa Nine-point deficit Manchester City (2013/14) The end of the Premier League season was just a fortnight away and Liverpool sat pretty at the top of the table with a nine-point lead over eventual champions Manchester City (who had games in hand). What happened next is something that Liverpool will struggle to shake off until the day they end their ever-growing title drought. Despite Steven Gerrard's efforts, the Merseyside club did indeed let their lead slip, losing against Chelsea and only managing to draw at Crystal Palace in their penultimate match of the season. By the time of their final fixture, Liverpool had relinquished their advantage to a Manchester City side who did not drop a point in their final six matches. Steven Gerrard paid the price for his slip against Chelsea in 2014 Credit: getty images Eight-point deficit Manchester United (2002/03) By the middle of January, Manchester United found themselves in fourth place and nine points off league leaders Arsenal. Their only hope was to keep winning and hope those above them made mistakes. Which is exactly what happened. Ferguson's side went undefeated from Boxing Day to the end of the season, claiming top spot in mid-April and going on to win the title by five points. Manchester United went on a brilliant streak in the second half of the 2002/03 season Credit: getty images Manchester United (2008/09) A fine first half of the season meant Liverpool sat top of the table at the end of 2008, with an advantage over Manchester United that had stretched to eight points by January 10th. United had games in hand, but a poor start meant they had yet to rise higher than third in the table all season. Three successive draws against Stoke City, Everton and Wigan Athletic meant Liverpool's grip at the top disappeared and, courtesy of an 11-game winning run, United pounced. The title was eventually won by four points. Manchester City (2011/12) Agueroooooooooooooooooooooooo! The Premier League season was reaching its climax in the second week of April when Roberto Mancini, the Manchester City manager, verbally conceded the title to Manchester United, who had an eight-point lead on them at the top of the table. Sergio Aguero secured the most remarkable Premier League triumph in 2012 Credit: getty images A run of one win in four - including defeat at Manchester City - saw United falter, which allowed Mancini's side to win the title on the final day of the season in the most dramatic fashion courtesy of injury time goals from Edin Dzeko and Sergio Aguero.

Great Premier League surges that give Manchester United (a glimmer of) hope in the title race

Manchester United's 3-0 win over Stoke City on Monday has raised hopes that Jose Mourinho's side might - just might - be able to claw back league leaders Manchester City, who suffered their first league defeat of the season at Anfield on Sunday. While victory at Anfield could have sent Pep Guardiola's team 18 points clear at the summit, those recent results instead mean the gap has been reduced to 12 points. With United's winning streak growing, is there any chance that they can claw back the deficit and pull off an unlikely Premier League title triumph? History suggests there just might be. Teams placed second or lower in the table at the turn of the New Year have gone on to lift the Premier League trophy on no fewer than a dozen occasions. Can United's 2017/18 crop join them?  Here are the greatest New Year surges to give Manchester United hope... 12-point deficit Manchester United (1995/96) As the end of January 1996 approached, Kevin Keegan's Newcastle United side looked to be running away with the title in receipt of a 12-point lead over Manchester United, who sat third. Then the wheels totally fell off. While United kept plugging away in some style - dropping just four points from their final 15 games - Newcastle wilted under the pressure. By early April Keegan's team had lost five of their previous eight matches and their grip on the Premier League title had gone. United went on to win the league by four points. A young David Beckham and Gary Neville celebrate winning the title in 1996 Credit: getty images Arsenal (1997/98) Just two seasons after they had overturned a 12-point deficit, United relinquished the same advantage to cede the title to Arsenal. Sir Alex Ferguson's side were seven points clear of Chelsea at the turn of the year, but the gap to eventual champions Arsenal was even greater, with Arsene Wenger's team languishing in sixth. The gap remained until late February when Arsenal embarked on an incredible streak that included a a 10-game winning run to wrap up the league title with two games to spare. Arsenal completed a Premier League and FA Cup double in 1998 Credit: pa Nine-point deficit Manchester City (2013/14) The end of the Premier League season was just a fortnight away and Liverpool sat pretty at the top of the table with a nine-point lead over eventual champions Manchester City (who had games in hand). What happened next is something that Liverpool will struggle to shake off until the day they end their ever-growing title drought. Despite Steven Gerrard's efforts, the Merseyside club did indeed let their lead slip, losing against Chelsea and only managing to draw at Crystal Palace in their penultimate match of the season. By the time of their final fixture, Liverpool had relinquished their advantage to a Manchester City side who did not drop a point in their final six matches. Steven Gerrard paid the price for his slip against Chelsea in 2014 Credit: getty images Eight-point deficit Manchester United (2002/03) By the middle of January, Manchester United found themselves in fourth place and nine points off league leaders Arsenal. Their only hope was to keep winning and hope those above them made mistakes. Which is exactly what happened. Ferguson's side went undefeated from Boxing Day to the end of the season, claiming top spot in mid-April and going on to win the title by five points. Manchester United went on a brilliant streak in the second half of the 2002/03 season Credit: getty images Manchester United (2008/09) A fine first half of the season meant Liverpool sat top of the table at the end of 2008, with an advantage over Manchester United that had stretched to eight points by January 10th. United had games in hand, but a poor start meant they had yet to rise higher than third in the table all season. Three successive draws against Stoke City, Everton and Wigan Athletic meant Liverpool's grip at the top disappeared and, courtesy of an 11-game winning run, United pounced. The title was eventually won by four points. Manchester City (2011/12) Agueroooooooooooooooooooooooo! The Premier League season was reaching its climax in the second week of April when Roberto Mancini, the Manchester City manager, verbally conceded the title to Manchester United, who had an eight-point lead on them at the top of the table. Sergio Aguero secured the most remarkable Premier League triumph in 2012 Credit: getty images A run of one win in four - including defeat at Manchester City - saw United falter, which allowed Mancini's side to win the title on the final day of the season in the most dramatic fashion courtesy of injury time goals from Edin Dzeko and Sergio Aguero.

Great Premier League surges that give Manchester United (a glimmer of) hope in the title race

Manchester United's 3-0 win over Stoke City on Monday has raised hopes that Jose Mourinho's side might - just might - be able to claw back league leaders Manchester City, who suffered their first league defeat of the season at Anfield on Sunday. While victory at Anfield could have sent Pep Guardiola's team 18 points clear at the summit, those recent results instead mean the gap has been reduced to 12 points. With United's winning streak growing, is there any chance that they can claw back the deficit and pull off an unlikely Premier League title triumph? History suggests there just might be. Teams placed second or lower in the table at the turn of the New Year have gone on to lift the Premier League trophy on no fewer than a dozen occasions. Can United's 2017/18 crop join them?  Here are the greatest New Year surges to give Manchester United hope... 12-point deficit Manchester United (1995/96) As the end of January 1996 approached, Kevin Keegan's Newcastle United side looked to be running away with the title in receipt of a 12-point lead over Manchester United, who sat third. Then the wheels totally fell off. While United kept plugging away in some style - dropping just four points from their final 15 games - Newcastle wilted under the pressure. By early April Keegan's team had lost five of their previous eight matches and their grip on the Premier League title had gone. United went on to win the league by four points. A young David Beckham and Gary Neville celebrate winning the title in 1996 Credit: getty images Arsenal (1997/98) Just two seasons after they had overturned a 12-point deficit, United relinquished the same advantage to cede the title to Arsenal. Sir Alex Ferguson's side were seven points clear of Chelsea at the turn of the year, but the gap to eventual champions Arsenal was even greater, with Arsene Wenger's team languishing in sixth. The gap remained until late February when Arsenal embarked on an incredible streak that included a a 10-game winning run to wrap up the league title with two games to spare. Arsenal completed a Premier League and FA Cup double in 1998 Credit: pa Nine-point deficit Manchester City (2013/14) The end of the Premier League season was just a fortnight away and Liverpool sat pretty at the top of the table with a nine-point lead over eventual champions Manchester City (who had games in hand). What happened next is something that Liverpool will struggle to shake off until the day they end their ever-growing title drought. Despite Steven Gerrard's efforts, the Merseyside club did indeed let their lead slip, losing against Chelsea and only managing to draw at Crystal Palace in their penultimate match of the season. By the time of their final fixture, Liverpool had relinquished their advantage to a Manchester City side who did not drop a point in their final six matches. Steven Gerrard paid the price for his slip against Chelsea in 2014 Credit: getty images Eight-point deficit Manchester United (2002/03) By the middle of January, Manchester United found themselves in fourth place and nine points off league leaders Arsenal. Their only hope was to keep winning and hope those above them made mistakes. Which is exactly what happened. Ferguson's side went undefeated from Boxing Day to the end of the season, claiming top spot in mid-April and going on to win the title by five points. Manchester United went on a brilliant streak in the second half of the 2002/03 season Credit: getty images Manchester United (2008/09) A fine first half of the season meant Liverpool sat top of the table at the end of 2008, with an advantage over Manchester United that had stretched to eight points by January 10th. United had games in hand, but a poor start meant they had yet to rise higher than third in the table all season. Three successive draws against Stoke City, Everton and Wigan Athletic meant Liverpool's grip at the top disappeared and, courtesy of an 11-game winning run, United pounced. The title was eventually won by four points. Manchester City (2011/12) Agueroooooooooooooooooooooooo! The Premier League season was reaching its climax in the second week of April when Roberto Mancini, the Manchester City manager, verbally conceded the title to Manchester United, who had an eight-point lead on them at the top of the table. Sergio Aguero secured the most remarkable Premier League triumph in 2012 Credit: getty images A run of one win in four - including defeat at Manchester City - saw United falter, which allowed Mancini's side to win the title on the final day of the season in the most dramatic fashion courtesy of injury time goals from Edin Dzeko and Sergio Aguero.

Mundine's audacious call ahead of boxing return

Mundine's audacious call ahead of boxing return

Bellator 192: Chael Sonnen 'truth is I don't know what I'm getting myself into against Rampage and 250lb fighters'

Total honesty. Chael Sonnen admits that there is "a genuine fear factor" heading into his heavyweight tournament fight at Bellator MMA 192 against Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson this Saturday night at The Forum, Inglewood, on the outskirts of Los Angeles.     Sonnen, a hype master who has experienced a series of nights in MMA against some of the very best the sport has ever seen, in the likes of Anderson Silva (twice) and Jon Jones, is not exaggerating when he says there are critical issues going in against an opponent who may be 40 pounds heavier than him on the night. Rampage may use that advantage against the middleweight/light heavyweight campaigner who expects to be around 215 pounds in the contest.   Mr @ChaelSonnen@sonnench tells me that @Rampage4real Fight has real fear factor because of likely 30-35 lb weight difference - 'I will have to go to the well in this fight' ahead of @BellatorMMA 192 in @Telegraph@TelegraphSport interview pic.twitter.com/Gbf26ja67W— Gareth A Davies (@GarethADaviesDT) January 16, 2018 There has been a simmering Sonnen-Rampage beef between the pair spinning back many years, yet the build up to this inaugural heavyweight tournament opener, chief supporting act at the iconic music and sports venue with the Bellator welterweight crown on the line in a fascinating contest as Douglas Lima defends against Rory MacDonald, has been unusually tame.   But that has warning signs written all over it for Sonnen, who admits in some ways that he has signed up for the toughest assignment of his career. "He’s been quite nice. You never know what Rampage you’re going to get. Whether you’re going to catch him on a good day or not," Sonnen told The Telegraph.  "But Rampage was quite pleasant. You have to understand too that this is a different format. It’s a tournament. I just got asked if you beat Rampage are you going to beat Fedor (Emelianenko). But it doesn’t work that way. It’s a tournament. There’s no animosity, it’s just a tournament. You get matched up with whoever advances. It’s not the same as a regular fight when two guys want to fight each other and call each other out to settle their business. It’s a tournament." When you realize it's FIGHT WEEK!!! �� �� Tune-in Sat. Jan 20th LIVE & FREE on @paramountnet#Bellator192pic.twitter.com/4sfjqlUIoN— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) January 15, 2018 "But there is a fear factor here, and it has driven me in training, in camp. Look, Rampage is a tough night when he weighs 205 pounds. When he weighs 255 pounds… you talk about his hands, yeah, Rampage has put plenty of men down. I won’t be any different if he can connect the right way. I don’t overlook that at all." Then, in a moment of utter honesty, Sonnen told me: "The truth is, I don’t totally know what I’m getting into. I’ve never fought at heavyweight. It’s not just Rampage. You can put any of those guys in there. I’ve wrestled plenty of them but only in the practice room. I’ve sparred plenty but only in the practice room and not with full speed and power and everything on the line." Yet the competitor in Sonnen, soon 40, would not let the old dog drop the bone, the pay days, the chances of being crowned as Bellator heavyweight champion on the new Paramount Television Network. Call it drive, ambition, or ego. But Sonnen has it in droves. He has always been ballsy. "Yes, you have to be. It’s a different atmosphere for me too and I like that part of it. I like that challenge. It’s a bit of a stress relief having the unknown and having something else to focus on. I have the same partners. I train with a lot of smaller guys and try to deal with their speed. Is that the right way to train? I don’t know. I’m in a unique situation and here we are." Sonnen recently challenged the media, by the way, to dare to spar with him. "It’s always fun. I always have fun. I like working up the media. But look, I have real things on my mind. Rampage has come out and made it quite clear he can stop my wrestling. I’ll make it just as clear to him that I don’t have to wrestle him." #ThursdayThoughts: heavier weight class = heavier diet! #InNOut@ChaelSonnen makes his heavyweight debut against @Rampage4real on Jan. 20th at #Bellator192 - LIVE from @theforum in #LosAngeles! #BellatorWGP Don't miss it! �� https://t.co/itlBCc5dTDpic.twitter.com/kCpNRzb3Vp— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) January 11, 2018 "I had aspirations of being on the 2000 Olympic team for boxing. I wouldn’t have made the team but I’d have been right up there, top five. I tried out for the wrestling team instead." Then Sonnen cites the first Anderson Silva fight, in which he had the upper hand against the Brazilian (at the time) UFC middleweight champion, dominating for four and a half rounds, on a thrilling night in Oakland one hundred moons ago.   "Boxing and standing up is not something I’ve ever really had to show because I’ve always tackled guys but the few times I have ended up on my feet I’ve never lost a stand up battle. I’ve fought 49 men and never been outstruck once. It’s the same situation," said Sonnen, recalling the Silva fight. "I’ve got tools. I remember the days when people said Georges St Pierre couldn’t strike and that stopped the day he couldn’t take Matt Hughes down so knocked him out with a kick to the head. As fighters you always start with plan A. If that fails you go to Plan B. If you don’t need to show that, people assume plan B doesn’t exist." I’ve just been around way too long. I had my first fight in 97. I’ve been around way too long to not have skills B C and D and if I need them I will turn to them. Rampage is a big guy. A lot of what I do, change in elevation and exploding on someone my size and knocking a man off his feet against his will… but when I train in the practice room those big guys are really hard to drag down at will. I imagine I’ll have to go to the well a couple more times but that’s fine with me." Bellator opens 2018 with a bang when @TraceAdkins sings the national anthem at #Bellator192! The event will air LIVE on both @paramountnet and @CMT!#BellatorNation#CMT#TraceAdkins#NationalAnthempic.twitter.com/2MWL2koTYt— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) January 15, 2018 But bottom line with Sonnen is that he loves to train, loves to fight, and it has become a way of life. The way other fighters act, he says, often irritates him. Perhaps it is because he is able to fight, broadcast and run his own businesses all at the same time.   "I think as a person you have to be able to do more than one thing at a time. I don’t mind running in the snow. Put some gloves on and head out the door. I don’t use any of those excuses. I hear guys can’t fight because it’s hunting season. How much time are you spending outside shooting at birds? What the hell has that got to do with being in practice for a few hours?" "I always hear these fighters make believe like they’re real people with real struggles who are contributing to society. You’re a prima donna baby who gets asked to come to work three times a year. Shut up. Go do it. They’re so out of touch. I remember the night I destroyed and consequently retired Tito Ortiz (Sonnen, in fact, lost the bout), he came to the press conference and I wanted to be really diligent and give him a moment." Sonnen faces off against Tito Ortiz Credit: Bellator MMA, Lucas Noonan /Bellator MMA, Lucas Noonan  "The media asked him what are you going to do in retirement? He said he was going to take a nap each day. I remember thinking  "My God, Mr Nap, do you know how out of touch you just made yourself sound', while everyone else is out slugging away to provide for their family..." Sonnen is in for a tough night. But the self-styled 'American Gangster' or 'The People's Champ' as the Oregon fight character describes himself, is mentally and physically ready to skirt Rampage and progress to round two of the tournament. Truth is, either man is a loss at this stage in the proceedings.  

Bellator 192: Chael Sonnen 'truth is I don't know what I'm getting myself into against Rampage and 250lb fighters'

Total honesty. Chael Sonnen admits that there is "a genuine fear factor" heading into his heavyweight tournament fight at Bellator MMA 192 against Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson this Saturday night at The Forum, Inglewood, on the outskirts of Los Angeles.     Sonnen, a hype master who has experienced a series of nights in MMA against some of the very best the sport has ever seen, in the likes of Anderson Silva (twice) and Jon Jones, is not exaggerating when he says there are critical issues going in against an opponent who may be 40 pounds heavier than him on the night. Rampage may use that advantage against the middleweight/light heavyweight campaigner who expects to be around 215 pounds in the contest.   Mr @ChaelSonnen@sonnench tells me that @Rampage4real Fight has real fear factor because of likely 30-35 lb weight difference - 'I will have to go to the well in this fight' ahead of @BellatorMMA 192 in @Telegraph@TelegraphSport interview pic.twitter.com/Gbf26ja67W— Gareth A Davies (@GarethADaviesDT) January 16, 2018 There has been a simmering Sonnen-Rampage beef between the pair spinning back many years, yet the build up to this inaugural heavyweight tournament opener, chief supporting act at the iconic music and sports venue with the Bellator welterweight crown on the line in a fascinating contest as Douglas Lima defends against Rory MacDonald, has been unusually tame.   But that has warning signs written all over it for Sonnen, who admits in some ways that he has signed up for the toughest assignment of his career. "He’s been quite nice. You never know what Rampage you’re going to get. Whether you’re going to catch him on a good day or not," Sonnen told The Telegraph.  "But Rampage was quite pleasant. You have to understand too that this is a different format. It’s a tournament. I just got asked if you beat Rampage are you going to beat Fedor (Emelianenko). But it doesn’t work that way. It’s a tournament. There’s no animosity, it’s just a tournament. You get matched up with whoever advances. It’s not the same as a regular fight when two guys want to fight each other and call each other out to settle their business. It’s a tournament." When you realize it's FIGHT WEEK!!! �� �� Tune-in Sat. Jan 20th LIVE & FREE on @paramountnet#Bellator192pic.twitter.com/4sfjqlUIoN— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) January 15, 2018 "But there is a fear factor here, and it has driven me in training, in camp. Look, Rampage is a tough night when he weighs 205 pounds. When he weighs 255 pounds… you talk about his hands, yeah, Rampage has put plenty of men down. I won’t be any different if he can connect the right way. I don’t overlook that at all." Then, in a moment of utter honesty, Sonnen told me: "The truth is, I don’t totally know what I’m getting into. I’ve never fought at heavyweight. It’s not just Rampage. You can put any of those guys in there. I’ve wrestled plenty of them but only in the practice room. I’ve sparred plenty but only in the practice room and not with full speed and power and everything on the line." Yet the competitor in Sonnen, soon 40, would not let the old dog drop the bone, the pay days, the chances of being crowned as Bellator heavyweight champion on the new Paramount Television Network. Call it drive, ambition, or ego. But Sonnen has it in droves. He has always been ballsy. "Yes, you have to be. It’s a different atmosphere for me too and I like that part of it. I like that challenge. It’s a bit of a stress relief having the unknown and having something else to focus on. I have the same partners. I train with a lot of smaller guys and try to deal with their speed. Is that the right way to train? I don’t know. I’m in a unique situation and here we are." Sonnen recently challenged the media, by the way, to dare to spar with him. "It’s always fun. I always have fun. I like working up the media. But look, I have real things on my mind. Rampage has come out and made it quite clear he can stop my wrestling. I’ll make it just as clear to him that I don’t have to wrestle him." #ThursdayThoughts: heavier weight class = heavier diet! #InNOut@ChaelSonnen makes his heavyweight debut against @Rampage4real on Jan. 20th at #Bellator192 - LIVE from @theforum in #LosAngeles! #BellatorWGP Don't miss it! �� https://t.co/itlBCc5dTDpic.twitter.com/kCpNRzb3Vp— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) January 11, 2018 "I had aspirations of being on the 2000 Olympic team for boxing. I wouldn’t have made the team but I’d have been right up there, top five. I tried out for the wrestling team instead." Then Sonnen cites the first Anderson Silva fight, in which he had the upper hand against the Brazilian (at the time) UFC middleweight champion, dominating for four and a half rounds, on a thrilling night in Oakland one hundred moons ago.   "Boxing and standing up is not something I’ve ever really had to show because I’ve always tackled guys but the few times I have ended up on my feet I’ve never lost a stand up battle. I’ve fought 49 men and never been outstruck once. It’s the same situation," said Sonnen, recalling the Silva fight. "I’ve got tools. I remember the days when people said Georges St Pierre couldn’t strike and that stopped the day he couldn’t take Matt Hughes down so knocked him out with a kick to the head. As fighters you always start with plan A. If that fails you go to Plan B. If you don’t need to show that, people assume plan B doesn’t exist." I’ve just been around way too long. I had my first fight in 97. I’ve been around way too long to not have skills B C and D and if I need them I will turn to them. Rampage is a big guy. A lot of what I do, change in elevation and exploding on someone my size and knocking a man off his feet against his will… but when I train in the practice room those big guys are really hard to drag down at will. I imagine I’ll have to go to the well a couple more times but that’s fine with me." Bellator opens 2018 with a bang when @TraceAdkins sings the national anthem at #Bellator192! The event will air LIVE on both @paramountnet and @CMT!#BellatorNation#CMT#TraceAdkins#NationalAnthempic.twitter.com/2MWL2koTYt— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) January 15, 2018 But bottom line with Sonnen is that he loves to train, loves to fight, and it has become a way of life. The way other fighters act, he says, often irritates him. Perhaps it is because he is able to fight, broadcast and run his own businesses all at the same time.   "I think as a person you have to be able to do more than one thing at a time. I don’t mind running in the snow. Put some gloves on and head out the door. I don’t use any of those excuses. I hear guys can’t fight because it’s hunting season. How much time are you spending outside shooting at birds? What the hell has that got to do with being in practice for a few hours?" "I always hear these fighters make believe like they’re real people with real struggles who are contributing to society. You’re a prima donna baby who gets asked to come to work three times a year. Shut up. Go do it. They’re so out of touch. I remember the night I destroyed and consequently retired Tito Ortiz (Sonnen, in fact, lost the bout), he came to the press conference and I wanted to be really diligent and give him a moment." Sonnen faces off against Tito Ortiz Credit: Bellator MMA, Lucas Noonan /Bellator MMA, Lucas Noonan  "The media asked him what are you going to do in retirement? He said he was going to take a nap each day. I remember thinking  "My God, Mr Nap, do you know how out of touch you just made yourself sound', while everyone else is out slugging away to provide for their family..." Sonnen is in for a tough night. But the self-styled 'American Gangster' or 'The People's Champ' as the Oregon fight character describes himself, is mentally and physically ready to skirt Rampage and progress to round two of the tournament. Truth is, either man is a loss at this stage in the proceedings.  

Britain's Anthony Joshua will put his World Boxing Association and International Boxing Federation belts on the line against Joseph Parker on March 31 in Cardiff

Britain's Anthony Joshua will put his World Boxing Association and International Boxing Federation belts on the line against Joseph Parker on March 31 in Cardiff (AFP Photo/Geoff CADDICK)

Joseph Parker vs Hughie Fury - WBO World Heavyweight Title

Boxing - Joseph Parker vs Hughie Fury - WBO World Heavyweight Title - Manchester Arena, Manchester, Britain - September 23, 2017 Joseph Parker celebrates with the belt after winning the fight Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua vs Carlos Takam - IBF & WBA World Heavyweight Titles

Boxing - Anthony Joshua vs Carlos Takam - IBF & WBA World Heavyweight Titles - Principality Stadium, Cardiff, Britain - October 28, 2017 Anthony Joshua celebrates at the end the fight Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

FILE PHOTO: Joseph Parker vs Hughie Fury - WBO World Heavyweight Title

Boxing - Joseph Parker vs Hughie Fury - WBO World Heavyweight Title - Manchester Arena, Manchester, Britain - September 23, 2017 Joseph Parker makes his entrance before the fight Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge/Files

FILE PHOTO: Anthony Joshua vs Carlos Takam - IBF & WBA World Heavyweight Titles

Boxing - Anthony Joshua vs Carlos Takam - IBF & WBA World Heavyweight Titles - Principality Stadium, Cardiff, Britain - October 28, 2017. Anthony Joshua celebrates at the end the fight Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge/Files

Joseph Parker vs Hughie Fury - WBO World Heavyweight Title

Boxing - Joseph Parker vs Hughie Fury - WBO World Heavyweight Title - Manchester Arena, Manchester, Britain - September 23, 2017 Joseph Parker celebrates with the belt after winning the fight Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Anthony Joshua vs Carlos Takam - IBF & WBA World Heavyweight Titles

Boxing - Anthony Joshua vs Carlos Takam - IBF & WBA World Heavyweight Titles - Principality Stadium, Cardiff, Britain - October 28, 2017 Anthony Joshua celebrates at the end the fight Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Olympic boxing champion Claressa Shields defeats Tori Nelson

In a photo provided by Showtime, Claressa Shields is interviewed after he win over Tori Nelson during a boxing bout Friday night, Jan. 12, 2018, in Verona, N.Y. Shields scored a unanimous 10-round decision to retain her women's WBC and IBF super middleweight world titles. (Stephanie Trapp/Showtime via AP)

Olympic boxing champion Claressa Shields defeats Tori Nelson

In a photo provided by Showtime, Claressa Shields throws a right at Tori Nelson during a boxing bout Friday night, Jan. 12, 2018, in Verona, N.Y. Shields scored a unanimous 10-round decision to retain her women's WBC and IBF super middleweight world titles. (Stephanie Trapp/Showtime via AP)

Olympic boxing champion Claressa Shields defeats Tori Nelson

In a photo provided by Showtime, Claressa Shields, right, celebrates after a win over Tori Nelson during a boxing bout Friday night, Jan. 12, 2018, in Verona, N.Y. Shields scored a unanimous 10-round decision to retain her women's WBC and IBF super middleweight world titles. (Stephanie Trapp/Showtime via AP)

Olympic boxing champion Claressa Shields defeats Tori Nelson

In a photo provided by Showtime, Claressa Shields follows through on a left to Tori Nelson during a boxing bout Friday night, Jan. 12, 2018, in Verona, N.Y. Shields scored a unanimous 10-round decision to retain her women's WBC and IBF super middleweight world titles. (Stephanie Trapp/Showtime via AP)

Olympic boxing champion Claressa Shields defeats Tori Nelson

In a photo provided by Showtime, Claressa Shields throws a right at Tori Nelson during a boxing bout Friday night, Jan. 12, 2018, in Verona, N.Y. Shields scored a unanimous 10-round decision to retain her women's WBC and IBF super middleweight world titles. (Stephanie Trapp/Showtime via AP)

In a photo provided by Showtime, Claressa Shields follows through on a left to Tori Nelson during a boxing bout Friday night, Jan. 12, 2018, in Verona, N.Y. Shields scored a unanimous 10-round decision to retain her women's WBC and IBF super middleweight world titles. (Stephanie Trapp/Showtime via AP)

In a photo provided by Showtime, Claressa Shields is interviewed after he win over Tori Nelson during a boxing bout Friday night, Jan. 12, 2018, in Verona, N.Y. Shields scored a unanimous 10-round decision to retain her women's WBC and IBF super middleweight world titles. (Stephanie Trapp/Showtime via AP)

In a photo provided by Showtime, Claressa Shields, right, celebrates after a win over Tori Nelson during a boxing bout Friday night, Jan. 12, 2018, in Verona, N.Y. Shields scored a unanimous 10-round decision to retain her women's WBC and IBF super middleweight world titles. (Stephanie Trapp/Showtime via AP)

In a photo provided by Showtime, Claressa Shields throws a right at Tori Nelson during a boxing bout Friday night, Jan. 12, 2018, in Verona, N.Y. Shields scored a unanimous 10-round decision to retain her women's WBC and IBF super middleweight world titles. (Stephanie Trapp/Showtime via AP)