The Offside Daily: Christmas fixtures cause a stir and Barcelona sack new recruit within hours

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Only the news you need – bringing you five mainstream and five off-the-wall news stories each day!

1. The two captains from yesterday’s clash between Manchester United and Chelsea have given their assessments of the game, with Wayne Rooney adamant the Old Trafford club were unlucky not to win the game, and John Terry stating his team owes the fans a ‘quick recovery’ in form.

2. Former Newcastle United goalkeeper Pavel Srnicek has died at the age of 47, having suffered a cardiac arrest on the 22nd of December.

3. Real Madrid manager Rafael Benitez has claimed he and the club’s president, Florentino Perez, have been the subjects of a media witch-hunt, amid growing speculation regarding Benitez’s tenure at the Bernabeu.

4. Tottenham Hotspur are capable of winning the title this season, according to their manager Mauricio Pochettino who spoke after their 2-1 victory at Watford on Monday which lifted them to third in the table.

5. Esteban Granero has said that his former manager Jose Mourinho will return to Real Madrid to manage the club again, adding that he believes it will be a successful reunion between the manager and the club.

6. Wayne Rooney’s performance against Chelsea last night was deemed Man-of-the-Match worthy by BT’s commentary team, but not everyone on social media agreed (Eurosport).

7. Imagine signing for Barcelona one afternoon, then having your contract cancelled the same evening … all because of this (The Guardian).

8. Liverpool’s Martin Skrtel obviously had a lot of free time over the festive period; check out this snap from Christmas Eve … slightly odd to say the least (ESPN).

9. Gary Neville nearly lost his analytical eye when wishing Valencia and the club’s supporters a Merry Christmas (The Daily Mirror).

10. It seems one fan has taken it into his own hands to acquire new signings for Chelsea, as Etienne Capoue gave this fantastic reaction when asked by a supporter to sign for the Stamford Bridge club (The Metro).

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