By DAN KARELL
If Monday afternoon’s English Premier League match proved anything, it is that Sunderland is not going down without a fight.
Paolo Di Canio and his Sunderland side gained a vital point in their run to survival in the Premier League with Monday’s 1-1 draw against Stoke. Jonathan Walters scored first in the ninth minute to give Tony Pulis’ club the lead, but despite going down to ten-men, Sunderland battled back to score an equalizer in the 63rd minute from the boot of John O’Shea.
Sunderland were already missing their top scorer Stephen Fletcher to injury and midfielder Stephane Sessegnon to a season-ending red card suspension, forcing Di Canio to start 27-year-old forward Danny Graham up top, despite his lack of scoring since moving to the Black Cats.
With the draw, Sunderland sit three points above the drop zone at 38, with two matches remaining. Stoke are currently in 11th place in the table, on 41 points.
Here are some more stories to get your Tuesday started:
ETO’O IN POTENTIAL INTER RETURN
Samuel Eto’o could be set for a shock move back to a former club.
According to reports out of Italy, Inter Milan is currently looking into a transfer for the 32-year-old forward, who played with the club between 2009-2011. Currently one of the highest paid players in the world at €20 million per season at Anzhi Makhachkala in the Russian Premier League, Eto’o is entering the final year of his contract and has yet to make a decision on his future.
If the former Cameroon international did move back to Italy, it would have to come at a serious pay cut, as Inter would only be able to pay Eto’o €3 million per season plus bonuses.
BARCELONA INTERESTED IN BORUSSIA’S GUNDOGAN
One of the brightest players this season for Borussia Dortmund has been defensive midfielder Ilkay Gundogan.
Though the 22-year-old has made huge strides at home and is a full German international, his worldwide reputation increased during Borussia Dortmund’s matches in the Champions League this spring. One of the teams that has taken notice of the Borussia star is FC Barcelona, who is reportedly weighing up a €25 million transfer.
Barcelona are already interested in bringing in Gundogan’s teammate Mats Hummels to shore up their injured and aging defense during the summer transfer window. Gundogan has scored three goals in 42 appearances in all competitions with Borussia this season.
ANCELOTTI HAS YET TO RECEIVE AN OFFER FROM MADRID
Despite leading Ligue 1 all season, Paris Saint-Germain manager Carlo Ancelotti is on his way out at season’s end, despite how the club finishes in the table.
However, Ancelotti has refuted the reports of him leaving Paris, saying that he still has one year left on his PSG contract and that he has yet to even receive an offer from Real Madrid, the club that many think will go after Ancelotti if current manager Jose Mourinho leaves.
Speaking separately on a French radio station, Ancelotti also dispelled rumors of him signing a new contract extension, with the former Milan and Chelsea boss saying that he has yet to make a decision on his future.
DORTMUND RECEIVES 500,000 TICKET REQUESTS
Perhaps sensing the last time in the near future that the club will be challenging for a major title, Borussia Dortmund fans have made a loud statement about their support for the club.
More than 500,000 fans applied for Champions League final tickets, with only 24,000 available in the Borussia allocation. More than half of that number came in the 24 hours after surviving Real Madrid on aggregate in the semifinals.
The club will hold a ballot in the coming days to decide which of the ticket requests will end up with tickets for the final at Wembley Stadium on May 25. In other news, goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller signed a new contract through 2016.
Club America forward Christian Benitez won his third scoring title as the regular season came to a close on Sunday, finishing the Clausura with 12 goals. (REPORT)
Hamburg are willing to let South Korean midfielder Heung-Min Son leave during the summer if he decides not to extend his contract. (REPORT)
Manchester City are closing in on 18-year-old Atletico Madrid youth star Óliver Torres. (REPORT)
Just 12 months after being in the Premier League, Wolverhampton have sacked their fourth manager in that span, Dean Saunders, after the club was relegated to League One. (REPORT)
A Belgian lawyer has challenged UEFA’s Financial Fair Play rules on the grounds that it restricts his potential income. (REPORT)
What do you make of these reports? Do you see Sunderland staying up after their performance on Monday? Do you see Eto’o going back to Inter? Do you think Gundogan would be a good fit with Barca?
Share your thoughts below.