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Ballon d’Or 2014 and Coach of the Year nominees announced

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Four days after announcing the names of the candidates for the FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year and the FIFA World Coach of the Year for Women’s Football for 2014 awards, FIFA and France Football have today revealed the names for the men’s awards.

The candidates for the FIFA Ballon d’Or and for the FIFA World Coach of the Year for Men’s Football awards have been unveiled (see below). The final decisions will be made by the captains and head coaches of the men’s national teams as well as by international media representatives selected by France Football.

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Van Persie earns United a share of the spoils against Chelsea

A 94th minute equalizer from Robin van Persie meant that Manchester United stole a late point, perhaps deserved so, against table toppers Chelsea at Old Trafford. After an interesting but goal-less first half, Didier Drogba's header was turned into his own net by Robin van Persie in the 53rd minute. Chelsea had chances to kill off the game, but a sending off for Branislav Ivanovic late in stoppage time allowed United a late chance which RVP duly took to ensure that United stayed 10 points behind Chelsea in the League table, and perhaps more crucially kept Man City within 6 points of the Blues.

Manchester United made two changes to the side that took on West Brom on Monday night with Chris Smalling replacing the injured again Phil Jones and Marouane Fellaini getting a start after his goal last week. Wayne Rooney served the last game of his suspension and was hence absent, as was Radamel Falcao, through injury.

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Hammers stun Manchester City at Upton Park

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In what was a near perfect start to the weekend, West Ham United and Manchester City served up a cracking first game in the early kick off on Saturday with the Hammers stunning the reigning English champions 2-1 to cement their spot in the top 4 in the Premier League standings.

West Ham were clearly the better side in the first half and out ran, out hustled and out worked City and went into the break deserved 1-0 ahead from Morgan Amalfitano's goal. A defence splitting pass from former Arsenal man Alex Song sent Enner Valencia through on goal down the right hand channel and his scuffed cross made its way to Amalfitano to tap into an empty net after Pablo Zabaleta had got into a tangle with goalkeeper Joe Hart.

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Portugal back in the Top 10 of FIFA Rankings

In the October edition of the FIFA World Ranking, the first three positions are unchanged from last month. Germany have held on to the top spot despite a difficult start to their EURO 2016 qualification campaign. Portugal (9th, up 2) are making their first appearance in the top ten since July and Belgium (4th, up 1) have leapfrogged the Netherlands (5th, down 1) to achieve their highest ranking yet. Meanwhile former table-toppers Spain (10th, down 2) have slipped down as far as tenth following their defeat against Slovakia (24th, up 16) and Switzerland’s (12th, down 2) poor start in the EURO 2016 qualifiers has seen them drop out of the top ten altogether.

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Podolski wins it late for Arsenal in Brussels

Arsenal gave their Champions League knock out round qualification hopes a major boost tonight by stealing a late win in Brussels against a surprisingly competitive Anderlecht side that had the Gunners on the ropes till very late in the contest.

After a sluggish first half which required neither goalkeepers to make a save, Arsenal started the second period brightly with Alexis Sanchez drawing a save out of Silvio Proto in the Anderlecht goal and Santi Cazorla being denied brilliantly by the goalkeeper after being played through by Sanchez.

Anderlecht took a shock lead through a rare foray forward with Andy Najar getting on the end of a move he started, nodding home after being left alone in the box with Calum Chambers doubling up on the man at the near post and the ball going above him.

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Man United grab late draw against West Brom

An 87th minute goal from summer signing Danny Blind helped Manchester United salvage a 2-2 draw against West Bromwich Albion in a thrilling game on Monday night.

A Stephane Sessegnon strike had given West Brom the lead as early as the 8th minute, however, an inspired half-time substitution by Louis van Gaal, who brought on Marouane Fellaini for Ander Herrera at the break paid instant dividends as United drew level early in the second half.

England hopeful Saido Berahino restored West Brom's advantage in the 66th minute racing onto a defence splitting pass, but Daley Blind ensured that United took a point away from the Hawthorns with a late strike from distance.

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Liverpool squeeze out lucky win against QPR

Liverpool gave their flagging Premier League challenge a much needed boost with a fortunate 3-2 win against bottom of the Premier League Queens Park Rangers in London today. A pair of own goals from QPR centre backs Richard Dunne and Steven Caulker undid the good work of on loan Chilean striker Eduardo Vargas, who scored a brace for QPR after coming off the bench. In between those four goals was a fantastic finish from Philippe Coutinho, who was slightly fortunate to be on the pitch after having escaped a second yellow shortly after being booked. QPR also hit the post twice, but only have themselves to blame after having scored twice in their own net.

QPR were clearly the better side in the first half, and unfortunate not to take the lead after having hit the post twice in the early exchanges with Leroy Fer the unfortunate player on both occasions, missing a sitter first, and then seeing his header come back into play off the top of the post.

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