Daily Briefing

Today’s back pages: Pep admits title race is over for Man City and England are brutally beaten in France

A round up of the sport headlines from UK newspapers on 3 February

City slackers

Tottenham’s 2-0 victory over Manchester City is covered on most of the back pages this morning with Steven Bergwijn receiving glowing praise for scoring on his debut.

The 22-year-old volleyed home Spurs’s first goal on 63 minutes and the Daily Star describes it as a “stunner”. 

The defeat leaves Man City 22 points adrift of Liverpool at the top of the Premier League and the Daily Mirror is one of several papers to carry the admission from Pep Guardiola that the title race is officially over. 

City’s Spanish head coach said: “They [Liverpool] are far away so they are unstoppable. They have a lot of points, we have dropped points quite similar to today. Our targets are to win the remaining competitions and qualify for the Champions League next season.”

According to the Mirror’s back page the City boss held a “behind-closed-doors inquest into the latest meltdown” and he could face a fine after breaching Premier League regulations in turning up late for his media responsibilities. 

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Brutal truth

England’s Six Nations hammering at the hands of France makes for grim reading for Eddie Jones, with his pre-match taunts coming back to haunt the coach. 

Jones had warned the young French team that Test match rugby was a “brutal” environment, and so it proved - for England. 

Beaten 24-17 in Paris (and at one stage trailing 24-0), England’s horrendous performance comes in for sharp criticism on the back pages. 

“Jones’s lesson in brutality” is The Times’s headline, while The Daily Telegraph leads with “brutally exposed”. 

The Express goes with “brutal backlash” and the Daily Mirror labels Jones a “motormouth” and says that the French were grateful to the England head coach for giving them ample motivation with his pre-match comments.

Djokovic jubilant

Independent finds space to report on Novak Djokovic’s eighth Australian Open crown after the Serbian won a five-set thriller against Austria’s Dominic Thiem in Melbourne. 

It was his 17th grand slam title and Djokovic is now two titles shy of Rafael Nadal’s tally of 19 and three behind Roger Federer’s record of 20.

Today’s newspaper back pages

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