Matteo Trentin claimed the third Tour de France stage win of his career as the race leaders kept plenty in reserve for the upcoming make-or-break mountain stages.The European champion from Italy was part of a breakaway group of more than 30 riders that left behind the peloton in the early stages of the 200-kilometer 17th stage. 1. Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal) 642. Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) 503. Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal) 38WHAT’S NEXT?The competitors have had an initial taste of the Alps, but Thursday’s ride is the first major Alpine stage and could prove punishing for anyone flagging. Stage 18 takes the riders up three peaks – Vars, Izoard and Galibier – that each rise 2,000 metres above sea level. A brutal test awaits. Trentin, 29, was the man most likely to win long before the finish, and he delivered for Mitchelton-Scott, riding solo in the closing stages after pulling clear of Kasper Asgreen, who took second for Deceuninck-Quick Step, with CCC’s Greg van Avermaet third.Wednesday was the day the riders arrived in the Alps, traveling from beneath the spectacular Pont du Gard aqueduct near Nimes and heading eastward to an altogether more mountainous setting at the finish in Gap.It was a taster day, one for the riders with an eye on glory in Paris on Sunday to acclimatize to their new surroundings, skirting by several rugged peaks without being called on to take on any daunting ascents.What it amounted to at the business end of the general classification was that nothing changed. France’s Julian Alaphilippe remained in the yellow jersey, with no challenges from his rivals as riders in the peloton effectively rested their [email protected] wins his 3rd @LeTour stage victory. Matteo Trentin remporte sa troisième victoire d’étape sur le Tour de France. #TDF2019 pic.twitter.com/MDcE9V2NCQ— Tour de France (@LeTour) July 24, 2019Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-Quick Step) retained an overall lead of one minute and 35 seconds over Britain’s defending champion Geraint Thomas (Team INEOS) and 1:47 over Dutchman Steven Kruijswijk.France’s Thibaut Pinot, strongly fancied by many to come through and win the Tour, remained fourth at 1:50.The yellow jersey had never changed hands in 23 previous stages ending in Gap, which last hosted a finish in 2015, and predictably that trend continued.Thomas is hoping Alaphilippe’s remarkable effort so far will take its toll in the mountains, saying: “You’d think he’d be starting to get tired now. Teams will be thinking to try to make it hard all day. It’ll be interesting. It’s three big, big days now, and I think a lot can happen.”Trentin added to his stage wins from the 2013 and ’14 Tours and moved up to 34th overall this year. He said on ITV4: “It was really an emotional finish because I’ve only won two races in my whole career alone.”STAGE RESULT1. Matteo Trentin (Mitchelton-Scott) 4:21:362. Kasper Asgreen (Deceuninck-Quick Step) +0:373. Greg van Avermaet (CCC) +0:414. Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo) +0:415. Dylan Teuns (Bahrain-Merida) +0:41CLASSIFICATION STANDINGSGeneral Classification1. Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-Quick Step) 69:39:162. Geraint Thomas (INEOS) +1:353. Steven Kruijswijk (Jumbo-Visma) +1:47Points Classification1. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) 3092. Elia Viviani (Deceuninck-Quick Step) 2243. Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain-Merida) 203King of the Mountains
Solskjaer, currently in charge of Norway’s Molde, was widely reported to be United’s leading candidate for the interim role for the rest of the season while they search for a permanent appointment in the close-season.There has been no official announcement from the club, however a video appeared on United’s official website celebrating Solskjaer and seeming to confirm his appointment.A video of him scoring the winner for United in their 1999 Champions League final triumph against Bayern Munich was accompanied with the headline ‘The most famous night of Ole’s career’.Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg also appeared to confirm Solskjaer’s appointment, writing on Twitter: “Great day for Norwegian football. Good luck keeping control of the Red Devils.”Solskjaer, nicknamed the baby-faced assassin, scored 128 goals in 367 appearances for United during 10 seasons playing under the club’s legendary boss Alex Ferguson, who signed him from Molde in 1996.After retiring, the Norwegian was appointed as United’s reserve-team boss before joining Molde as manager in 2010.Solskjaer had an ill-fated spell in charge of Cardiff in 2014, winning just nine of his 30 games as they were relegated from the Premier League before being dismissed and returning to Molde in 2015.Molde’s season ended last month and does not resume until March 31, with Solskjaer unlikely to refuse the chance to manage such a prestigious club.Ironically, his first match in charge of United could be against Cardiff on Saturday if the mooted deal is completed in time.United are in sixth place in the Premier League after their worst start for 28 years.Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino and former Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane are among the bookmakers’ favourites to take the United job at the end of the season.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Molde boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is reportedly set to take charge of Manchester United on an interim basis © NTB SCANPIX/AFP / Svein Ove EkornesvaagLONDON, United Kingdom, Dec 19 – Ole Gunnar Solskjaer looks set to replace Jose Mourinho as Manchester United’s interim manager after the club appeared to accidently announce the appointment on their website.Mourinho was axed on Tuesday after just two-and-half years in charge at Old Trafford and the troubled Premier League club are reportedly ready to bring back one of their old heroes to take his place on a temporary basis.