What happened in football today: January 4, 2021

Five substitutes will be allowed in the Carabao Cup semi-final and final

Teams will be allowed to use five substitutes in the semi-finals and finals of the Carabao Cup this season.

Tottenham host Brentford on Tuesday and Manchester United meet rivals Manchester City in the second semi-final on Wednesday.

The competition has already adapted to COVID-19, scrapping two-legged semi-finals to facilitate the match schedule, although extra time and penalties can still be used if necessary.

Manchester United appoint Darren Fletcher as new first-team manager

Manchester United have signed former player Darren Fletcher as their first-team manager.

Fletcher, who has been coaching United Under-16s since October, will join Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s coaching staff.

The club have also announced the appointment of Robin Sadler as Head of Rehabilitation and Physiotherapy.

Sadler previously worked as head physiotherapist in Derby County. His new job will oversee the first team, academy and women’s teams.

Uruguay players’ union calls for Cavani’s ban to be overturned

The Uruguayan players’ union has called for Edinson Cavani’s three-game ban to be lifted for using the term ‘negrito’.

Cavani used the phrase in an Instagram Story and received the English FA’s three-game ban as a result. He missed the win over Aston Villa on Friday.

The Uruguayan players’ union, however, accused the English FA of committing a ‘discriminatory’ act by granting the ban to Cavani.

Joey Barton steps down as Fleetwood Town manager

Joey Barton has quit as manager of League One Fleetwood Town.

Barton joined the club in 2018 and led them to the play-offs last season.

Managing Fleetwood was Barton’s first coaching role in football after a 15-year playing career that included stints at Manchester City, Newcastle United and Marseille.

Sheffield Wednesday closed the training ground after the COVID-19 outbreak

Sheffield Wednesday have closed their Middlewood Road training ground as the Championship club deal with an outbreak of COVID-19.

The club have taken the decision to close their training ground until Thursday, reopening just two days before their FA Cup third round clash with Exeter City.

Wednesday has yet to announce whether any players have tested positive for COVID-19 or are showing symptoms.

Four Manchester City Women players tested positive for COVID-19

Manchester City have confirmed that four players from the women’s first team have tested positive for COVID-19 and will now self-isolate in line with government guidelines. All four players will be out when the team take on West Ham Women on Sunday.

It comes just a day after the men’s side were left without five first-team players for the same reason in their emphatic 3-1 win over Chelsea.

Liverpool’s Liam Millar close to loan from Charlton

Liverpool striker Liam Millar is set to complete a loan move to Charlton Athletic for the remainder of the season.

The Canada international has played the majority of his games for Barry Lewtas’ Under-23 side this season and captained the team on six occasions.

The potential loan to the League One club will be the 21-year-old’s second loan spell during his time at Liverpool. Millar previously spent a year at Kilmarnock.

For full details on the move, and to keep up to date with the latest significant developments in the transfer window, go further below.

(Photo: Pete Norton/Getty Images, Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images, Ash Donelon/Manchester United via Getty Images, Sam Bagnall – AMA/Getty Images)

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