What today’s papers are saying:
SUNDAY PEOPLE: Rafa Benitez has given Chelsea fans the news they`ve been dreading - he is desperate to land the Chelsea gig on a permanent basis. Also: Liverpool last night clinched the signing of Inter Milan midfield star Philippe Coutinho for £8.7million.
THE SUN ON SUNDAY: Rafa Benitez has told owner Roman Abramovich that he wants to stay on as Chelsea manager. Also: Michael Carrick is in line for a fresh 12-month contract at Old Trafford when his £80,000 a week deal ends this year.
MAIL ON SUNDAY: If the FA Cup needed a shot in the arm in its bid to recover former glories, it was provided by Luton Town thanks to an 80th-minute goal which the scorer later admitted he didn’t even see reach the back of the net. Also: A furious and disbelieving Harry Redknapp surveyed the wreckage of QPR’s FA Cup humiliation at the hands of MK Dons and slammed the big stars who failed him.
SUNDAY EXPRESS: Harry Redknapp last night angrily vowed to wield the axe after his millionaire ‘reserves’ crashed out of the FA Cup in shame. Also: Brentford defender Tony Craig has admitted that he and his teammates could encourage ballboys to waste time today when they face Chelsea in their FA Cup fourth round tie.
SUNDAY TELEGRAPH: After the torment, the triumph. Luton Town, still reeling from three successive relegations and their infamous 30-point deduction in 2008, fashioned the greatest upset in the FA Cup for 24 years. Also: Wayne Rooney served notice of his readiness to reclaim the spotlight at Manchester United by orchestrating the dismantling of Fulham at Old Trafford.
INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY: Time never stands still in sport, and today’s Australian Open final provides confirmation that there is a new headline act in men’s tennis. Step aside Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, step forward Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray. Also: Despite the fact he scored at Old Trafford with a muscular header, this is not a night Aaron Hughes would want to relive. He gave away the opening penalty, failed to close down Wayne Rooney for Manchester United’s second and deflected Javier Hernandez’s shot past his own keeper. All in all, not one for the grandchildren.
THE OBSERVER: Luton Town, 85 places beneath their opponents in football’s food chain, became the first non-league side for 24 years to knock top-tier opposition out of the FA Cup when they beat Norwich City 1-0. Sutton United were the last to achieve the feat, seeing off Coventry City 2-1 in 1989, and they were at home. Also: The list of humiliations suffered by Queens Park Rangers this season is so extensive that it is difficult to know precisely where this galling humiliation at the hands of MK Dons ranks, while at least Harry Redknapp could take solace that this was far from his strongest side.
DAILY STAR SUNDAY: Mario Balotelli was last night ready for a beat-the-deadline move from Manchester City. Also: David Moyes is emerging as a genuine candidate to become manager of Chelsea in the summer.
SUNDAY TIMES: Luton Town became the first non-league side to knock a Premier League team out of the FA Cup when they won 1-0 at Norwich yesterday. Also: Andy Murray contests his third Grand Slam title in a row today.
SUNDAY MIRROR: Sir Alex Ferguson took the advice of two key people before signing Robin van Persie. Also: An open letter, allegedly signed by Fabricio Coloccini, has incensed the Toon Army.