Tag Archives: allegiance

Roberto Mancini and Sir Alex Ferguson battle for Premier League title on the PlayStation

Revealed! How Mancini and Fergie battled it out for the Premier League title… on the PLAYSTATION

By
Adam Shergold

PUBLISHED:

11:20 GMT, 2 March 2013

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UPDATED:

11:20 GMT, 2 March 2013

With Manchester United enjoying a 12 point lead, the Barclays Premier League trophy is surely already adorned in red and white ribbons.

As a result, Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini must take the small victories as and when they come – even if they're on the PlayStation.

The Italian has been secretly meeting his adversary Sir Alex Ferguson to play out the title race in virtual reality, as this video footage shows.

Scroll down for video

PlayStation battle: Mancini and Ferguson decide the Premier League title on the City manager's blue console

PlayStation battle: Mancini and Ferguson decide the Premier League title on the City manager's blue console

But even on his blue PlayStation, Mancini can't get the better of his nemesis.

The voyeuristic spoof video is the creation of filmmaker Alison Jackson, who uses uncanny Mancini and Fergie lookalikes.

It's to promote the new limited edition Super Slim PlayStation consoles, available in red or blue depending on your allegiance.

The clip starts with Mancini frantically trying to figure out how City can make up the dozen point gap at the top of the league.

Letting go: Roberto Mancini with the Premier League title last season. His City side must overhaul a 12 point United lead to retain it

Letting go: Roberto Mancini with the Premier League title last season. His City side must overhaul a 12 point United lead to retain it

As he's tapping away on the calculator and scratching his head, there's a knock at the door.

A gloating Fergie pushes his way in and starts parading around with Mancini's replica Premier League trophy – resplendent in blue ribbons.

The pair decide to battle it out on the PlayStation to determine once and for all who will be champion and get to keep the silverware.

Laughing: Alex Ferguson knows another Premier League title is within reach

Laughing: Alex Ferguson knows another Premier League title is within reach

And after a rollercoaster match, it's Fergie who emerges victorious, showing an unexpected talent for football sims.

Delighted, the United boss skips out of the Mancini residence with the trophy safely in his possession again – though only after performing a cringe-worthy Gangnam style dance.

Time will tell whether the real title race has the same outcome.

The new Red or Blue limited edition Super Slim PlayStation consoles are available now. Twitter hashtag #RedorBlue

Wrong colour Adam Johnson showed off his customised PlayStation on Twitter this week

Wrong colour Adam Johnson showed off his customised PlayStation on Twitter this week

VIDEO: Watch the Mancini and Fergie PlayStation spoof

Aaron Cook switches allegiance to Isle of Man

European taekwondo champion Cook to switch allegiance to Isle of Man after London 2012 snub

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UPDATED:

00:04 GMT, 7 December 2012

Aaron Cook has stated his intention to switch his allegiance to the Isle of Man after being overlooked by Great Britain for the Olympics.

The 21-year-old was world No 1 in the under-80kg category but Lutalo Mohammad was instead selected by British Taekwondo leading to a drawn-out process which was eventually ratified by the British Olympic Association.

Mohammad won the bronze medal at London 2012 in what was a successful Games for taekwondo as Jade Jones won gold in the women's 57kg category while Martin Stamper reached the semi-finals.

Jumping ship: Cook (right) was snubbed by Team GB at London 2012

Jumping ship: Cook (right) was snubbed by Team GB at London 2012

However, it was Cook who dominated the column inches in the run-up to the Games and now he has decided to compete for the Isle of Man in all events bar the Olympics.

Manx athletes compete under the GB flag at the Olympics but, according to Cook, the World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) may introduce a route to the Games based on rankings rather than discretionary selection which saw him miss out this year.

Cook told Sky Sports News: 'I was reigning European champion, world No 1 – I am never going to work with those people (British Taekwondo) again.

'They have made their minds up with what they have done to me and I've made my mind up.

Unforgiven: Cook is still furious at British Taekwondo

Unforgiven: Cook is still furious at British Taekwondo

'I think I am quite lucky at the moment, the WTF are looking to organise new competitions, such as a grand prix, which they have said will open up a different path to the Olympics based on world rankings so all I have got to do is go and win the World Championships, the European Championships and make sure I am top ranked in the world and I can get there off my own back which we didn't have in the past.'

Of his disappointment on having to look on rather than participate in the summer, Cook added: 'I am extremely jealous obviously, I wish that was me.

'She (Jade Jones) did fantastic and so did Lutalo and so did Martin Stamper. I just wish I could have been on that team, I felt I deserved to be on that team.

'I've got to find some peace and I've to go move forward and this Isle of Man [opportunity] has come up and I can't wait to be hopefully world champion next year.'

Luis Suarez won"t be sold to Manchester City, says Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers

Rodgers warns Liverpool they must not sell Suarez as Man City line up 50m bid

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UPDATED:

13:21 GMT, 15 November 2012

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers insists striker Luis Suarez will be staying at Anfield despite interest from Manchester City.

The Premier League champions are weighing up a 50million bid for the Uruguay international when the transfer window reopens in six weeks.

The 25-year-old is the only fit and firing senior striker at Liverpool after a disappointing summer in the market, and Rodgers has every intention of hanging on to his leading scorer.

Right hand man: Brendan Rodgers is adamant he must keep hold of Luis Suarez

Right hand man: Brendan Rodgers is adamant he must keep hold of Luis Suarez

'There will be no bidding war. He’s staying here,' said the Northern Irishman. 'If we lost Luis then we’ve got no strikers. I don’t think we can afford to lose anyone. He’s certainly not someone we want to sell or move on.

'He’s been a brilliant player to work with and we want to add to our squad, not take people out of it, especially a world-class player.'

Suarez only signed a new long-term contract in the summer and while Rodgers knows he needs to strengthen his forward line in January he does not believe he has to do so in order to convince the South American to stay.

Shock: Manchester City are considering breaking the bank to sign the Liverpool and Uruguay ace

Shock: Manchester City are considering breaking the bank to sign the Liverpool and Uruguay ace

Roberto Mancini

'We just continue to work and stay
focused on what we try to achieve,' added the Reds boss. 'Luis has
already shown in the summer his commitment to the club, he’s signed a
new deal.

'I think you’ve seen up until this point he’s in a great moment in his footballing life here at Liverpool: he is scoring goals and working well.

'I'll just continue to communicate with all the players and Luis in particular. Like I say, he’s very happy here.'

The former Ajax forward pledged his allegiance to Liverpool following the support he has received after his clash with Patrice Evra and subsequent race charge, and has not given any indication he wants to leave.

He has bought into Brendan Rodgers' vision but, inevitability, there will come a point when Suarez will want to see Liverpool's American owners show they are serious about challenging for the Champions League.

Suarez scored in the second half to seal a 3-1 win for Uruguay over Poland in a friendly in Gdansk on Wednesday.

Luis Suarez – Manchester City want to sign Liverpool striker to replace Mario Balotelli

Manchester City want 50m Suarez as Mancini prepares to offload Balotelli

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UPDATED:

07:21 GMT, 15 November 2012

Manchester City are considering a sensational January move for Luis Suarez.

Roberto Mancini has grown weary of errant forward Mario Balotelli and wants to offload the Italian to make room for the hottest striker in the Barclays Premier League.

Suarez has carried Liverpool this season, scoring 11 goals, but his form has not gone unnoticed and Mancini would like to recruit the Uruguay international

Shock: Manchester City are considering breaking the bank to sign Liverpool's Luis Suarez

Shock: Manchester City are considering breaking the bank to sign Liverpool's Luis Suarez

Prising Suarez away from Anfield, however, would come at a huge cost – 50million would be a realistic valuation – and negotiations would be complex.

Liverpool's stance about the 25-year-old has not changed from the summer when they saw off interest in him from Paris St Germain and Juventus.

Back then Liverpool gave Suarez a significant improvement on his contract, extending it to 2017 and giving him terms on a par with the club's top earners.

On his way Mario Balotelli may have to be sold to fun the move for Suarez

On his way Mario Balotelli may have to be sold to fun the move for Suarez

Frustrated: Roberto Mancini has tired of Balotelli, who was booked during Italy's international friendly against France

Frustrated: Roberto Mancini has tired of Balotelli, who was booked during Italy's international friendly against France

The former Ajax forward has pledged his allegiance to Liverpool, following the support he has received after his clash with Patrice Evra and subsequent race charge, and has not given any indication he wants to leave.

He has bought into Brendan Rodgers' vision but, inevitability, there will come a point when Suarez will want to see Liverpool's American owners show they are serious about challenging for the Champions League.

City, though, could offer Suarez the opportunity to compete for the biggest honours immediately. Mancini wants to re-shape his forward line and is also looking at Atletico Madrid's Radamel Falcao.

Suarez scored in the second half to seal a 3-1 win for Uruguay over Poland in a friendly in Gdansk on Wednesday.

Balotelli, meanwhile, started for Italy in their 2-1 defeat against France. The 22-year-old was unable to get on the scoresheet and was booked in the second-half.

Reshuffle: Mancini wants to strengthen his City squad in the January transfer window

Reshuffle: Mancini wants to strengthen his City squad in the January transfer window

Close one: Balotelli was kept out by Spurs goalkeeper Hugo Lloris on Wednesday

Close one: Balotelli was kept out by Spurs goalkeeper Hugo Lloris on Wednesday

Roberto Mancini considers bid to bring Luis Suarez to Manchester City

Mancini mulls offloading Balotelli to fund shock 50m swoop for Suarez in January

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UPDATED:

00:47 GMT, 15 November 2012

Manchester City are considering a sensational January move for Luis Suarez.

Roberto Mancini has grown weary of errant forward Mario Balotelli and wants to offload the Italian to make room for the hottest striker in the Barclays Premier League.

Suarez has carried Liverpool this season, scoring 11 goals, but his form has not gone unnoticed and Mancini would like to recruit the Uruguay international

Shock: Manchester City are considering breaking the bank to sign Liverpool's Luis Suarez

Shock: Manchester City are considering breaking the bank to sign Liverpool's Luis Suarez

Prising Suarez away from Anfield, however, would come at a huge cost – 50million would be a realistic valuation – and negotiations would be complex.

Liverpool's stance about the 25-year-old has not changed from the summer when they saw off interest in him from Paris St Germain and Juventus.

Back then Liverpool gave Suarez a significant improvement on his contract, extending it to 2017 and giving him terms on a par with the club's top earners.

On his way Mario Balotelli may have to be sold to fun the move for Suarez

On his way Mario Balotelli may have to be sold to fun the move for Suarez

Frustrated: Roberto Mancini has tired of Balotelli, who was booked during Italy's international friendly against France

Frustrated: Roberto Mancini has tired of Balotelli, who was booked during Italy's international friendly against France

The former Ajax forward has pledged his allegiance to Liverpool, following the support he has received after his clash with Patrice Evra and subsequent race charge, and has not given any indication he wants to leave.

He has bought into Brendan Rodgers' vision but, inevitability, there will come a point when Suarez will want to see Liverpool's American owners show they are serious about challenging for the Champions League.

City, though, could offer Suarez the opportunity to compete for the biggest honours immediately. Mancini wants to re-shape his forward line and is also looking at Atletico Madrid's Radamel Falcao.

Suarez scored in the second half to seal a 3-1 win for Uruguay over Poland in a friendly in Gdansk on Wednesday.

Balotelli, meanwhile, started for Italy in their 2-1 defeat against France. The 22-year-old was unable to get on the scoresheet and was booked in the second-half.

Reshuffle: Mancini wants to strengthen his City squad in the January transfer window

Reshuffle: Mancini wants to strengthen his City squad in the January transfer window

Close one: Balotelli was kept out by Spurs goalkeeper Hugo Lloris on Wednesday

Close one: Balotelli was kept out by Spurs goalkeeper Hugo Lloris on Wednesday

Wilfried Zaha stalls over England future

Zaha continues to stall over England future despite being set for debut in Sweden

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UPDATED:

22:56 GMT, 12 November 2012

Stalling: Zaha

Stalling: Zaha

Wilfried Zaha is refusing to commit himself to England, even though he is expected to make his debut in Sweden on Wednesday night.

The Crystal Palace winger, called up by England chief Roy Hodgson on Sunday, is also eligible to play for the Ivory Coast and he describes his position as ‘50-50 at the moment’.

Zaha, 20, excelled in his first training session with the senior team on Tuesday and has been told he will play a part, probably as a substitute, in Stockholm.

Although Wednesday’s clash against Sweden is FIFA recognised, it is classed as ‘non-competitive’ so he could still switch allegiance.

Zaha was born in Abidjan and the Palace forward’s parents, along with his large family, are also from the Ivory Coast.

He has been offered the chance to play in the Africa Cup of Nations in January and is refusing to rule it out, despite his call-up by England.

Zaha said: ‘I was born in the Ivory Coast but all I know is England. It’s 50-50 at the moment.

Stellar season: Zaha has starred for Crystal Palace in the Championship

Stellar season: Zaha has starred for Crystal Palace in the Championship

Fast-track: Zaha only made his Under 21 debut in February

Fast-track: Zaha only made his Under 21 debut in February

‘Didier Drogba called me and I was shocked, to be honest. He’s a humble guy.

‘I’ve been with England Under 21s and now I will have to make a decision.’

Zaha has represented England at Under 17, Under 19 and Under 21 level.

The Palace winger is the outstanding prospect in the Championship and is wanted by all the top teams in the Barclays Premier League.

England’s next competitive fixture is the World Cup qualifier against San Marino on March 12. If Zaha plays then, he will no longer be eligible for the country of his birth.

However, the Ivory Coast’s first game in the Africa Cup of Nations is on January 22 against Togo in South Africa. Zaha was initially reluctant to join up with the England squad over fears he might have to make a final decision over his allegiance.

However, after being assured he could still choose to play for the Ivory Coast, he joined up with Hodgson’s squad.

Meanwhile, captain Steven Gerrard has been cleared to travel to Sweden to win his 100th cap after a scan on a knee injury suffered against Chelsea on Sunday.

Michael McIlorum determined to seize his chance to send World Cup message to Steve McNamara

McIlorum determined to seize his chance to send World Cup message to McNamara

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UPDATED:

18:29 GMT, 8 November 2012

Hooker Michael McIlorum is determined to make the most of his last chance to stake a claim for a place in England coach Steve McNamara’s World Cup plans.

McIlorum has been in the shadows of James Roby since switching allegiance from Ireland, but got his opportunity when the St Helens hooker decided to take a short break from the international game.

The Warriors’ number nine, who missed the end of the Super League season through suspension, made his England debut in the opening game of the autumn international series against Wales and is set to keep his spot for Sunday’s final against France at the Salford City Stadium.

Big break McIlorum is determined to make the most of his chance

Big break McIlorum is determined to make the most of his chance

With Leeds scrum-half turned hooker Rob Burrow pushing him, McIlorum accepts the competition for places in the England team is stiff, but he is the man currently in possession of the jersey.

'It’s a good opportunity for me and Rob as well,' McIlorum said. 'James plays lot of games for 80 minutes so it’s been tough for a lot of English hookers.

'But I’ve been given my chance and it’s up to me to show what I can do. I had a bit of time off with my ban but I’m back into the swing of things now and getting my match fitness back up.'

McIlorum, 24, played in all three of Ireland’s matches in the 2008 World Cup in Australia, where they lost out to Fiji in a semi-final eliminator, but is now hoping to face both of those teams next year.

England are in the same group as Ireland and the Fijians, as well as Australia, for the preliminary stages of the 2013 World Cup.

That could cause some family friction but the Leeds-born McIlorum says his belated England selection justified his decision to risk incurring the wrath of his proud Irish grandad.

'He’s just happy to see me play,' McIlorum said. 'I enjoyed my time with Ireland. I was only 19 or 20 at the time and it was a big opportunity for me.

'I wouldn’t change it for the world. It was a good tournament and it helped me as a player and as a person. It would be good to play against them next year.'

The autumn international series for England is all about preparing for the World Cup and McIlorum believes the high-altitude training camp in South Africa was a step in the right direction.

'It put us in good stead for this tournament,' he said. 'This is a stepping stone for the World Cup and all the group are enjoying being in each other’s company.

'We are getting used to playing with each other and getting some cohesion.'

McNamara has delayed finalising his team as he waits for a 'series of niggles' to clear up.

The England players, who leave their Loughborough camp today, have not yet been told the team and, with no stipulation from tournament organisers, McNamara is likely to keep his line-up under wraps until an hour before kick-off.

Among those still to prove their fitness is Wigan captain and loose forward Sean O’Loughlin, who missed last Saturday’s 44-6 win over France in Hull with a hamstring injury.

At least there is no repeat of the illness that afflicted South Sydney prop Luke Burgess a week ago, but French duo Mathias Pala and Eloi Pelissier were laid low earlier this week at their team’s Manchester hotel by a stomach bug.

Lezignan second rower Andrew Bentley’s hopes of a recall for Les Tricolores were dashed when he was handed a two-match ban for foul play in the French Elite league last weekend, but replacements Julian Bousquet and Teddy Sadaoui have linked up with the rest of the squad.

France coach Aurelien Cologni will meet New Zealand referee Shane Rehm and RFL director of match officials Stuart Cummings tomorrow in a bid to iron out what he believes were differences in interpretation during last Saturday’s defeat by England at Craven Park.

"I couldn"t pretend to be Welsh": Birmingham-born Turner rejects Coleman"s advances

'I couldn't pretend to be Welsh': Birmingham-born Turner rejects Coleman's advances

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UPDATED:

14:03 GMT, 27 October 2012

Cardiff City's Ben Turner has turned his back on the chance to play international football for Wales, admitting he did not want to 'kid' anyone.

The 24-year-old defender qualifies to play for Chris Coleman's side through his Welsh grandmother – and the Wales boss had been scouting his progress.

Yet Turner, who has represented England at Under 19 level, was quick to reject the offer of changing allegiance, saying he did not want to 'pretend to be a Welshman'.

'Clear conscience': Ben Turner (right) will not be playing for Wales

'Clear conscience': Ben Turner (right) will not be playing for Wales

'I’m English and that’s how it is,' the Birmingham-born player told the BBC.

'I wouldn’t want to stop anyone for wanting to play international football if they felt it was right for them and they can justify it in their own head.

Familiar face: Chris Coleman worked with Turner at Coventry

Familiar face: Chris Coleman worked with Turner at Coventry

'But I couldn’t justify it for me and clear my own conscience.

'It would be like I was pretending to be a Welshman when I’m not.

'I wouldn’t want to kid anyone but at the same time I don’t want to annoy anyone either because that’s not my style.

'It was very flattering to be asked and I know Chris Coleman well from when we were both at Coventry.

'It went through my head that “who am I to turn down playing for Wales”

'But I’m not doing it because of that, I’m doing it for my own reasons which are the right reasons.

'Would a Welsh guy asked to play for England, would he do that

'I probably won’t have the chance to play for England but, in my head, that’s not the point.'

Arsenal defender Carl Jenkinson set for England debut after FA lodge paperwork

Arsenal defender Jenkinson set for England debut after FA lodge paperwork

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UPDATED:

22:01 GMT, 26 October 2012

England have submitted the paperwork to
transfer Carl Jenkinson's international
allegiance from Finland, in the hope he can
play in next month's friendly against Sweden.

The Arsenal defender has a Finnish mother
and played for Finland Under 21s but trained
with Roy Hodgson's squad ahead of the World
Cup qualifier in Poland earlier this month and
told the England boss he was ready to make
the switch.

Impressive: Arsenal's Carl Jenkinson (right)

Impressive: Arsenal's Carl Jenkinson (right)

England win Carl Jenkinson battle as Arsenal ace pledges allegiance to Three Lions

England win Jenkinson battle as Arsenal ace pledges allegiance with snub to Finland

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UPDATED:

06:44 GMT, 16 October 2012

The Football Association will apply
to FIFA for clearance to pick Carl Jenkinson in the England squad for
next month's friendly with Sweden.

Jenkinson trained with the Three Lions on Sunday prior to their departure for Tuesday's World Cup qualifier with Poland.

Impressive: Arsenal's Carl Jenkinson (right)

Impressive: Arsenal's Carl Jenkinson (right)

And the Finnish Football Association want to hold discussions with the 20-year-old as they look to keep him from England's clutches.

Jenkinson has represented the Finns at Under-19 and U21 level, however, the former Charlton man has also represented England at U17 level.

However, having represented Finland at Under-21 level, there is some red tape that needs sorting before Jenkinson can commit his future to England.

That is what he wants to do though, and boss Roy Hodgson is keen to see the process completed quickly.

'He made it very clear he wanted to play for England,' said Hodgson.

'We are now making overtures to FIFA to try and make certain we can have him as an England player.'

The 20-year-old will still have the option of playing for either nation until he plays a competitive match.

But Hodgson insists he would not select anyone just to stop him from appearing for someone else.

'I don't want to trick him into playing for England for a few minutes just to 'block' him,' said Hodgson.

'But he had to make a decision because we're very interested in him even if the competition is tougher to get him into the England team rather than the Finland team.'

When he is eventually introduced, Jenkinson will be part of an England squad that is slowly changing shape under Hodgson's guidance.
Of their 23-man squad for the 2010 World Cup, only nine are in the present group.

Jack Wilshere, Phil Jones and Chris Smalling to name but three will be live candidates for future squads once they are clear from injury.

It is a far healthier situation than anyone could have imagined following that depressing last-16 hammering by Germany in Bloemfontein, when the future looked so bleak.

And one of the 'new boys' is Jenkinson's Arsenal team-mate Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who after being a surprise choice for Euro 2012, is now in the England squad on merit.

'Alex is a player with enormous potential and ability,' said Hodgson.

'He came in as the joker in the pack and he's certainly cemented his position.

'Like a lot of our young players, he has to fight so hard to get into his club team but we're more than happy with him.

'He has to take every chance he gets with England because, internationally, there aren't that many games in a year.'