Tag Archives: audley

David Haye return Manchester June 29

Haye announces Manchester return after growing tired of waiting for Klitschkos

as he beat British rival Dereck Chisora at West Ham's Upton Park stadium, with his belief at the time that the success would lead to a fight with Vitali for the WBC belt.

Return: David Haye announced that he will fight in Manchester on June 29

Return: David Haye announced that he will fight in Manchester on June 29

British former WBA heavyweight boxing champion David Haye and his trainer, Adam Booth

David Haye announces his return to the boxing ring

That was not to be but Haye is now ready to go in search of the mandatory challenger tag by beating an opponent in June.

Haye's trainer, Adam Booth, has confirmed talks are ongoing with five fighters, all ranked in the top 15, none of whom are British. The Klitschko brothers are not among the five though.

'I believe they have their strategy for this year and it doesn't involve me. Instead of sitting around and waiting another year I want to get back in there,' Haye said.

'Why wait around and stagnate when you don't have to I'm happy to be back – a year is long enough time to wait for someone to phone you. I want that heavyweight title back and I will get it.

Back again: Haye will fight in Manchester, scene of his victory over Audley Harrison in 2010

Back again: Haye will fight in Manchester, scene of his victory over Audley Harrison in 2010

'I was hoping Vitali would be a man of his word and fight me after I did what he and his team wanted me to do and beat Dereck Chisora.

'We have been sitting around, waiting for the phone to ring, but that hasn't happened. We have sent some e-mails but they have fallen on deaf ears.'

Haye felt he was in line for a title fight against Vitali late last year after his display in beating Chisora in the fifth-round of their fight in impressive style, but it did not come to fruition with Manuel Charr selected ahead of Haye.

'The Chisora fight was a carrot dangled by Vitali Klitschko,' Haye said.

Knockout: Haye was last in the ring when he stopped Dereck Chisora in the fifth round at Upton Park

Knockout: Haye was last in the ring when he stopped Dereck Chisora in the fifth round at Upton Park

Knockout: Haye was last in the ring when he stopped Dereck Chisora in the fifth round at Upton Park

'He said, 'You beat Dereck Chisora and I will fight the winner', you can look back on the footage. I knew it would be a good fight [with Chisora] and the British public wanted to see it. Dereck is a tough guy and has the style that can give many people a few problems.

'A lot of people actually tipped Dereck to beat me, winning on points was never an option and I said that to anyone who would listen.'

Haye maintains he will not fight purely for money and is more interested in collecting titles, claiming a spell out of the ring which saw him make an appearance in the ITV reality TV show 'I'm A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here' has seen his fan-base swell.

Jungle fever: Haye made an appearance on I'm A Celebrity... Get me out of here!

Jungle fever: Haye made an appearance on I'm A Celebrity… Get me out of here!

Jungle fever: Haye made an appearance on I'm A Celebrity... Get me out of here!

'The fans all over the world, wherever I travel to, people want to see me back in the ring and ask me when they can see me. Well, on June 29 they will be able to see me do it,' Haye said.

'I want to get out there and put on a good show – 100 to 200 times a day people are walking up to me in the street.

'Strangely a lot of them are people who have never actually seen me fight live and I have reached out to a different demographic now after doing the TV show last year. It is a nice opportunity for me to do what I do best and knock someone out for the millions of my fans around the world.

Brawl: Haye and Chisora came to blows in Munich before settling their differences in the ring

Brawl: Haye and Chisora came to blows in Munich before settling their differences in the ring

haye

'I'm in it for the right reasons – I don't have to box. That is the difference between myself and a lot of the other heavyweights out there who have to box to pay the bills.

'I'm in it because I genuinely want to do it, I don't need to do it. I want to win that title back and I'm willing to put my body through the pain of a hard training camp to secure this fight.'

Defeat: Haye lost to Wladimir Klitschko in Hamburg but blamed the result on a broken toe (below)

Defeat: Haye lost to Wladimir Klitschko in Hamburg but blamed the result on a broken toe (below)

David Haye's broken toe after the fight

Audley Harrison Prizefighter return, Ricky Hatton on Let"s Dance for Comic Relief: Jeff Powell boxing column

Big mouth Audley is BACK but vows to let his fists do the talking, Price ready for Thompson and how Hatton entertained us

-Jeff-Powell-Ricky-Hatton-Manny-Pacquiao-more.html”>Jeff Powell's review of 2012, with Ricky Hatton, Manny Pacquiao and more
24/12/12

JEFF POWELL: De La Hoya on his way as Golden Boy applies for British license
17/12/12

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Harrison has returned to London from his Los Angeles home to take part in the Prizefighter tournament at York Hall, Bethnal Green on Saturday.

But he has told promoter Eddie Hearn: 'Don't expect a word out of me before the night. I won’t be saying anything at the pre-fight media events.

This time I will be doing my talking with my fists.'

To which we can only say: Hear, Hear.

Harrison has kept us entertained down the years with his ego-centric monologues but after his collapses against David Haye and David Price the time really has come for him to throw punches,
not phrases.

Hearn says: 'Audley loves talking so it will be interesting to see if he can go through with this. I might help him by bringing some tape to the press conference and sticking it over his mouth.'

Promoters normally expect the boxers to help them market their shows and in that sense there are few better salesmen than Harrison. But Hearn is happy that the biggest name in his eight-man Prizefighter line-up has already sold out York Hall in record time.

Hearn says: 'We regularly sell out Prizefighter, usually with the last batch of tickets going in the week before the event.

'But this time the tickets all went within three days of the announcement that Audley is taking part. Maybe some fans want to see him knocked out but whatever the reason he still draws a crowd.'

Last time out: Harrison lasted just 82 seconds in Liverpool last October when David Price knocked him out

Last time out: Harrison lasted just 82 seconds in Liverpool last October when David Price knocked him out

A-farce: British boxing fans were left feeling short-changed after David Haye cruised to a three-round box office win over Harrison in 2010

A-farce: British boxing fans were left feeling short-changed after David Haye cruised to a three-round box office win over Harrison in 2010

Golden hour: Harrison was triumphant for Great Britain at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games

Golden hour: Harrison was triumphant for Great Britain at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games

Whether, at 40 now, this will be his last chance to do just that will depend upon how he fares on Saturday.

The winner has to win three three-round fights – quarter, semi and final – and if Harrison fails as spectacularly as he did against Haye and Price he could be forced into reluctant retirement.

However, a heavyweight Prizefighter triumph rescued his career once before and Harrison is such an enigma that it could happen.

The biggest dangers to him appear to be Martin Rogan, another former Prizefighter champion, the experienced Essex-based Pole Albert Sosnowski and American knock-out artist Travis Walker.

Ready to rumble: Martin Rogan

Hard-hitting: Travis Walker

Huge threats: Martin Rogan and hard-hitting American Travis Walker (right) are also in action at York Hall

The evening will also see the professional debut of Tom Stalker, the captain of Britain's successful boxing team at the 2012 Olympics.

Stalker's four-rounder against Kristian Laight will fill the gap between the second Prizefighter semi-final and the final.

Hearn says: 'It has seemed a bit unfair that the winner of the second semi has had so little time to recover. So we would like to fit in an attraction like this at every Prizefighter.'

Show time: Tom Stalker will make his professional debut on the Prizefighter card in Bethnal Green

Show time: Tom Stalker will make his professional debut on the Prizefighter card in Bethnal Green

Stalker fell angrily short of a medal at the London Games but his style would appear to be more suited to the professional game.

Nevertheless – be it morbid curiosity or not – Big Audley is the main attraction.

If this is to be his swansong, it would be churlish not to wish him well.

Prizefighter will be live on Sky Sports on Saturday night.

Price is all right and ready for Thompson fight

Contrary to a bizarre flurry of tweets suggesting that the fight is off, David Price is scheduled to continue his steady ascent towards a world heavyweight title shot by fighting American Tony Thompson in his home city of Liverpool on Saturday night.

Promoter Frank Maloney has condemned the rumours as a mischievous attempt to disrupt Price's progress but says: 'Although this has cost us a couple of days of ticket selling we still expect another big night in Liverpool.'

Thumbs up: David Price, who watched his beloved Liverpool thrash Swansea 5-0 on Sunday, will fight Tony Thompson this weekend

Thumbs up: David Price, who watched his beloved Liverpool thrash Swansea 5-0 on Sunday, will fight Tony Thompson this weekend

Maloney is guiding Price along a similar path to that by which he led Lennox Lewis to world heavyweight domination and the fight with Thompson – who is threatening to ruin those well-laid plans – represents another step in the right direction.

Two of Thompson's three defeats in a 39-fight career came at the fists of Wladimir Klitschko, who Price hopes to challenge for the majority of alpha-belts late this year or early in 2014.

Price v Thompson is live on BoxNation Saturday night via Sky Ch 437 or Virgin Ch 546.

Murray out to ruin the party for Martinez in Argentina

Martin Murray's audacious attempt to relieve Argentina's Sergio Martinez of the WBC world middleweight title in Buenos Aires will be screened live on BoxNation on April 27.

This is a fight which merits a wide audience and Murray deserves his chance to shine on international television.

Martinez is the world's outstanding middleweight and one of the top five pound-for-pound fighters in boxing today. But he is in his late 30s and Murray is hoping that this will be the night when he slips slightly into decline.

Tough nut: Martin Murray will travel to Argentina later this Spring to fight Sergio Martinez

Home favourite: Martinez will be hoping to give the people of Argentina cause for celebration when he puts his world title on the lone against Murray

Showdown: Martin Murray faces a daunting task in Argentina when he collides with Sergio Martinez (right)

Argentina's president is promoting the event, in a football stadium, as part of a national day of celebration.

Murray must also expect increased hostility from the large crowd at a time when the dispute over the Falkland Islands is heating up once more.

But if they were looking for a no-risk festivity they could have picked an easier oppnonent.

Murray is a hard man and at the very least he will put Martinez through a fierce physical test.

Thanks for entertaining us, Ricky

Ricky Hatton was almost as big a hit in his first performance on Let's Dance for Comic Relief as he used to be in the ring.

Sinisterly clad as a member of the group Kiss, the Hitman threw himself into his routine with all the gusto which characterised his fights.

His choice of tune was appropriate – the Robbie Williams hit Let Me Entertain You. Hatton has never failed to do that.

Scroll down to watch the video

Let's dance: Ricky Hatton performs on BBC's Let's Dance for Comic Relief

It's a knockout: Despite a brilliant routine to 'Let Me Entertain You', Hatton was voted off by the judges

It's a knockout: Despite a brilliant routine to 'Let Me Entertain You', Hatton was voted off by the BBC judges

His appearance drew a large TV audience – just as his big fights always sold out.

But the most encouraging sight for his legion of followers was that he looked in good physical condition and very happy three months after his retirement.

Hatton promised he would not revert to his binge-boozing and junk eating after his one-fight comeback and the signs are that he will keep his word.

VIDEO Hatton enacts Robbie's Let Me Entertain You for Comic Relief

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Alexander passes up Money offer to hand Brook title shot

Despite a tweeted approach from Floyd Mayweather, Devon Alexander has promised to rearrange his world welterweight title defence against Kell Brook.

Despite the extra money he could make from fighting Mayweather, Alexander says: 'I owe this to Kell after postponing our fight because of my bicep injury.'

Brook will be even more encouraged to redouble his efforts in training if, as expected in the next few days, Mayweather confirms Robert Guerrero as the opponent for his comeback fight in Las Vegas on May 4.

Alexander versus Brook is being re-scheduled for late April or May.

Defending his title: Devon Alexander

Up for the fight: Kell Brook

Change of date: Devon Alexander (left) will re-arrange his postponed title fight with Kell Brook for April or May

Freddie Flintoff ranked 594th in heavyweight world standings

Onwards and upwards! Flintoff 594th in world heavyweight standings – just 522 places below Audley

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UPDATED:

12:31 GMT, 3 December 2012

Watch out Audley, Freddie Flintoff is coming after you!

The former England cricket captain has entered the world heavyweight rankings at No 594 after winning on his professional debut against Richard Dawson on Friday.

That places him one spot immediately below Dimitar Taskov, a Macedonian with two wins and two defeats, and one above America's Kalven Jenkins, who has won one, lost one and drawn two, in the BoxRec website's respected rankings.

Winning debut: Andrew Flintoff was celebrating after beating Richard Dawson

Winning debut: Andrew Flintoff was celebrating after beating Richard Dawson

Spirit: Flintoff bounced back from an early knockdown to beat Dawson

Spirit: Flintoff bounced back from an early knockdown to beat Dawson

It also leaves the 34-year-old a slender 522 places below free-falling Audley Harrison, who intends to fight on after his 82-second humiliation against David Price on October 13.

Price, incidentally, is ranked at 12, behind notable rivals Tyson Fury (7) and David Haye (5).

Flintoff recovered from a second-round knockdown to win a points verdict over Dawson in front of 6,000 fans in Manchester last week, but will not make a decision on a ring return until next year.

Stats official: Andrew Flintoff is ranked 594th in the heavyweight standings

Stats official: Andrew Flintoff is ranked 594th in the heavyweight standings

'Every time walking between the ropes has been an effort,' he said. 'The physical aspect is one thing but the mental aspect is another thing completely.

'I take my hat off to boxers and I give every credit to the hard work they put in.

'I put myself out to a degree but if I'd have been knocked out in the first round, everyone would have said, “Oh, he's just a big cricketer”.

'On a global scale, this comes nowhere near to my cricket career. I've had a novice heavyweight fight but I've had the chance to play for England in the Ashes and been successful.'

David Price knocks out Matt Skelton to retain British heavyweight title

The Price is right as rapid-fire knockout keeps David on course for world title shot

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UPDATED:

22:28 GMT, 30 November 2012

David Price took the next step on the road that could lead to a shot at the world title with a two-round demolition of Matt Skelton.

This has been a year to remember for the towering Liverpudlian and he finished it in the best possible fashion, taking his unbeaten record to a perfect 15-0 and giving himself the platform for a crack at the European crown.

Back at Aintree racecourse, where he had brushed Sam Sexton aside in May to win the vacant British and Commonwealth belts, Price produced his most accomplished display of 2012, pulverising Skelton with a flurry of unstoppable blows.

Too strong: David Price knocks out Matt Skelton (below) and celebrates his victory (above)

Too strong: David Price knocks out Matt Skelton (below) and celebrates his victory (above)

Too strong: David Price knocks out Matt Skelton (below) and celebrates his victory (above)

First to the punch: Price rains blows on Skelton

First to the punch: Price rains blows on Skelton

Though Skelton tried to grapple and impose himself on Price to make this a war of attrition from the outset, Price landed the first telling blows – a right jab and a right hook to rattle his 45-year-old opponent – and he never looked like losing.

This was expected to be a significantly sterner test for Price than one he faced when dispossessing of Audley Harrison in the blink of an eye six weeks ago. Gnarled, experienced and a former World title challenger, he had the tools to take any advantage of any chinks in Price’s armour.

But Skelton simply had no answer to the bombardment that came his way in the second round. A left jab followed by a right-hook was enough to get a partisan crowd on its feet early on and set the alarm bells ringing in Skelton’s corner.

Sensing the opportunity to finish things quickly, Price unleashed a barrage of body shots to pole-axe Skleton, with a short left-hook into his midriff enough to send him crashing to the canvas and prompt the towel to be hurled in after two minutes and 56 seconds.

It was the heaviest defeat Skelton has ever suffered and now Price can start thinking about world dominance. First, however, there maybe a clash with Tyson Fury.

Dodge this: Price aims an uppercut at the Bedford Bear

Dodge this: Price aims an uppercut at the Bedford Bear

Down for the count: Skelton goes to the canvas after a heavy barrage of body blows

Down for the count: Skelton goes to the canvas after a heavy barrage of body blows

Cakewalk: Price (right) turns back to his corner as Skelton is counted out at Aintree Equestrian Centre

Cakewalk: Price (right) turns back to his corner as Skelton is counted out at Aintree Equestrian Centre

David Price ready for Matt Skelton

I won't be Mr Nice in the ring, insists Price ahead of Skelton challenge

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UPDATED:

18:37 GMT, 28 November 2012

Nice guy David Price is happy to keep nurturing his nasty streak as he builds his growing reputation as the hottest property in heavyweight boxing.

The genial Liverpudlian's stock has continued to rise in 2012 with a series of brutal wins brought about by his devastating punching power.

Price, 29, hopes to finish a successful year in style when he defends his British and Commonwealth heavyweight titles against tough veteran Matt Skelton at Aintree on Friday.

Head to head: David Price (left) takes on Matt Skelton in Liverpool on Friday

Head to head: David Price (left) takes on Matt Skelton in Liverpool on Friday

After destroying other British rivals such as Tom Dallas, John McDermott, Sam Sexton and Audley Harrison in brutal style, the pressure is on for Price to repeat such ferocity.

And the 2008 Olympic bronze medalist admits even he has been taken aback by his explosive power.

'I've surprised myself with my progress at times,' he said. 'I've expected the fights to be a bit more difficult.

'It's the punch power which surprises me because in training I know I can punch, but it's when I put the 10oz gloves on, get in the ring and start punching then that it produces results which I didn't think were possible.

'I have got that nastiness in there. It's something that people always thought I never had. I've heard a lot of people say to me 'you're too nice'.

'But being nice is one thing and being soft is another and I'm not soft.'

Knockout: Price destroyed Audley Harrison in the first round in his last fight

Knockout: Price destroyed Audley Harrison in the first round in his last fight

Price added: 'I might be a nice person but when I'm in that ring a completely different persona comes out. It's heavyweight boxing, at the end of the day.

'If I don't finish the job it can give them an opportunity to take me out. It only takes one punch. So I want to get them out of there as quickly as possible and when I hit someone, I make sure they stay hit.

'That's what boxing is about. It's the noble art. For all the trash talking involved in boxing – which there is a place for, because people get excited about it, but it's not for me – there's always room for gentlemanly conduct as well.

'I just be myself and be normal and it comes across well to the fans as someone they can relate to.

'There's also a market for the trash talk as well, so it creates a nice balance.'

After such progress this year, the selection of Skelton (28-6) as challenger has drawn criticism from some quarters.

On the rise: Price remains unbeaten as he looks to dominate the heavyweight scene

On the rise: Price remains unbeaten as he looks to dominate the heavyweight scene

But while the 45-year-old Bedford brawler's age has unsurprisingly raised eyebrows, the former kickboxing champion arguably poses more of a threat than the timid Harrison managed last time out.

'Matt Skelton's a fighter a lot of fighters would prefer to avoid because he's a tough opponent who can make guys look bad,' said Price (14-0, 12KOs).

'He's fit, he's durable and he's a fighter. I think it's a significant fight for me.

'I haven't been getting many rounds under my belt and I think Skelton will be able to take my punches. If he doesn't then he doesn't and it's a confidence boost for me and if he does, then it's good rounds in the bank for me.'

Patrick Collins: Why do we put up with these obscenities just because it"s football?

Why do we put up with these obscenities just because it's football

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UPDATED:

00:08 GMT, 11 November 2012

Their team had just dropped two points at Swansea and they were no longer top of the Premier League.

Yet the Chelsea fans were in high spirits as they boarded the 19.28 to Paddington last Saturday.

For there were songs to sing, drinks to drink and tales to tell on the long journey home.

Boorish behaviour: Chelsea fans caused train consternation

Boorish behaviour: Chelsea fans caused train consternation

A young woman sat in a seat by a window. She was surrounded by a party of 15 portly, middle-aged fans.

The man next to her, already stupid
with booze, started to swallow cans of strong cider. The others, equally
thirsty, exchanged crude, raucous jokes; most concerning Jimmy Savile,
all featuring the c-word, over and over again.

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VIEW FULL ARCHIVE

As the drink slurped down, they bellowed a ditty about the Welsh abusing sheep. More cackling, more profanity.

Along the carriage sat a mother, anxiously nursing a baby and a toddler.

Other 'civilians' boarded the train at Cardiff, including a nervous, elderly couple who were visiting relations in London.

All were forced to endure the singing and the swearing.

/11/10/article-2231159-0B5874E4000005DC-805_224x423.jpg” width=”224″ height=”423″ alt=”Facing flack: Dave Jones” class=”blkBorder” />

Facing Flack: Arsene Wenger

Under fire from morons: Dave Jones (left) and Arsene Wenger

Then there are the songs about Auschwitz, heard on certain London grounds and intended to taunt the followers of Tottenham.

It is impossible to imagine the mind capable of conceiving a song about a death camp.

In fairness, it is equally impossible to comprehend the Spurs supporters who, despite being overwhelmingly non-Jewish, have cast themselves as the 'Yid Army'.

With its overtones of Oswald Mosley and his vile slogans of the Thirties, it is a term fit to keep squalid company with the n-word.

And yet it is regularly sung at White Hart Lane, in an apparent attempt to appear ironic.

They are, it seems, 'reclaiming' the calumny, 'embracing' the slur.

The club explain: 'Our fans adopted the chant as a defence mechanism in order to deflect anti-Semitic abuse. They do not use the term to cause any offence, they use it as a chant among themselves.'

Thus do Tottenham render themselves pathetic in their desire to pander to dullards.

And so the game, the national game, flounders in a moral swamp.

Songs about Auschwitz, wickedly baseless accusations of paedophilia; ordinary people would deem them unthinkable but football dismisses them as merely 'tribal', robust examples of what it is pleased to call 'banter'.

Pandering to dullards: Spurs fans proud to be a 'Yid Army'

Pandering to dullards: Spurs fans proud to be a 'Yid Army'

Sanitised by Sky and protected by the brazen self-interest of the Premier League, it exists in its own bubble, observes its own code.

Those of us who had hoped that football might be impressed by the civilised example of the London Olympic crowds were swiftly disabused.

Athletics, cycling, swimming: who's interested Where's the passion No, mate; football could buy and sell that lot.

You see, football really matters.

And it is that charmless arrogance which inspires moronic delusions.

We'll sing what we like. We'll say what we choose. We'll stand unsafely, by the tens of thousands, in grounds designed for sitting.

Sure, young children will be unable to see, their parents and grandparents will be upset and affronted. So what We're football. We're way above the usual rules.

Which leads us back to the 19.28 to Paddington, with its foul language, its offensive chants, its debris of fast food and its cowed, intimidated passengers.

At some stage, somebody would have had to clean those carriages; a menial, deeply unpleasant task made necessary by the animal excesses of ignorant oafs.

But who knows Who cares For this is Saturday, this is football. We know what we are, we do what we want. And we take a game, a beautiful, much-loved game, and reduce it to an anti-social charade, fit for cider-swilling dolts.

Milne's pay slip shows what a difference half-a-century makes

Fifty years ago this weekend, Manchester United and Liverpool played a 3-3 draw at Old Trafford.

They were two fine sides. United offered players like Nobby Stiles, Bobby Charlton, Johnny Giles and Denis Law, while Liverpool fielded the likes of Ron Yeats, Roger Hunt, Ian St John and an outstanding wing-half called Gordon Milne.

Milne was to feature in 236 games for Bill Shankly's team, as well as winning 14 full England caps.

On this weekend in the old First Division, before a crowd of 43,810, he played a prominent role in his team's excellent result.

'It was always a tough place to get anything from,' he recalls. 'But we deserved the point that day.'

The good old days: Ron Yeats and Gordon Milne hold the FA Cup aloft after Liverpool beat Leeds 2-1 at Wembley in 1965

The good old days: Ron Yeats and Gordon Milne hold the FA Cup aloft after Liverpool beat Leeds 2-1 at Wembley in 1965

Recently, the 75-year-old Milne was turning out his attic. /11/10/article-2231159-0486D7EC0000044D-226_468x309.jpg” width=”468″ height=”309″ alt=”Money-spinner: Steven Gerrard holds aloft the FA Cup after Liverpool beat West Ham on penalties in 2006″ class=”blkBorder” />

Money-spinner: Steven Gerrard holds aloft the FA Cup after Liverpool beat West Ham on penalties in 2006

Captain of Liverpool, he sets the tone and the tempo in his club's midfield.

For this, he is paid around 140,000 every week. If we subtract, say, half of that amount in deductions, he is left with 70,000 a week, or 10,000 a day, or around 7 per minute.

In other words, it would take Gerrard slightly less than five minutes to earn what Milne used to earn in a week.

'No complaints,' says Gordon Milne. 'I don't begrudge the modern players a penny.

'I loved every minute of my time. We were all paid the same and we were glad of it. That's the way things were.'

Half a century ago. Another age, another world…

PS

Following Roberto Mancini's absurd rant at a Champions League referee, Manchester City put up David Platt to support his boss.

'He's fine,' said Platt. 'People make a great deal out of it but it's not the first time he has reacted that way. He wears his heart on his sleeve. If he has something to say, he'll go and say it.'

It was the most hilariously inept defence since Lieutenant George spoke up for Edmund Blackadder after the slaying of the pigeon named Speckled Jim.

We must hear much more of Platt. And rather less of Mancini.

Rant: Roberto Mancini protests to referee Peter Rasmussen

Rant: Roberto Mancini protests to referee Peter Rasmussen

PPS

They tell us that Scottish football is galloping to the graveyard. The game which gave us gods like Law, Stein, Dalglish and the rest is now a misty-eyed memory.

Yet, once in a wonderful while, the gallop pauses and glory raises its voice.

Celtic 2, FC Barcelona 1. And the gods were smiling.

Audley Harrison could fight on despite embarrassing David Price defeat

Deluded Harrison could fight on despite lasting just 82 seconds in another humiliating defeat

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UPDATED:

13:51 GMT, 15 October 2012

Audley Harrison refused to rule out making a comeback despite his crushing first-round defeat by David Price on Saturday.

It took just 82 seconds for British and Commonwealth heavyweight champion Price to dispose of the 40-year-old Olympic gold medallist at the Liverpool Echo Arena.

While Price was magnificent, the loss appeared certain to end the career of Harrison, who has become a figure of ridicule in boxing.

Game over: Harrison lasted only 82 seconds in his latest setback

Game over: Harrison lasted only 82 seconds in his latest setback

Amazingly, however, the former world title challenger is still considering his future.

'I have said when I turn up to win and lose to nothing other than ability I will know my time is up, so this could be my last bout,' he said.

Figure of ridicule: But the Olympic gold medallist has refused to give up hope on fighting again

Figure of ridicule: But the Olympic gold medallist has refused to give up hope of fighting again

Flat out: The 40-year-old has claimed he was 'really in the zone' despite failing to last one round against Price

Flat out: The 40-year-old has claimed he was 'really in the zone' despite failing to last one round against Price

'I'll take some time to think this out as I never want to come back to boxing once I've walked away.

'If it's to end here, what a ride it's been and I'm grateful to the universe for allowing me to find my destiny and walk the precarious road my way.

'Keep dreaming, keep believing and never give up.'

'Never give up': The British boxer insisted he wasn't fazed by the crowd

'Never give up': The British boxer insisted he wasn't fazed by the crowd

Price's ruthless performance has elevated him into the top echelon of heavyweights with a fight against Vitali or Wladimir Klitschko a possibility for next year.

Harrison accepts he is on the wane, but takes comfort from his preparations for the fight.

Bloody mess: Harrison was humiliated at the Liverpool Echo Arena on Saturday night

Bloody mess: Harrison was humiliated at the Liverpool Echo Arena on Saturday night

'I said I had prepared very well for this bout and it showed,' he said. 'I was in great shape and went out there with no fear, believing I could win it.

'I was really in the zone, didn't get fazed by the crowd, or atmosphere and stayed focused on the task. After eight years, I finally had control of myself again.

'My whole game plan was about avoiding his right, so to get lined up like that is a disappointment for me.

'Father time has caught up with me, as I didn't see the initial shot, so could not react.

'He finished me off like a good pro, so I have no complaints. I have a broken nose for my troubles.'

Boxing: Ali Adams banned for two years after testing positive for steroids

Drug cheat heavyweight Ali banned for two years after taking steroids

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UPDATED:

11:35 GMT, 4 October 2012

Shamed British heavyweight boxer Ali Adams has been suspended for two years after testing positive for steroids.

The Iraqi-born fighter tested positive for stanozolol following his four-round defeat to former Olympic champion Audley Harrison at the Brentwood Centre in May – and now won't return to the ring until June 2014.

Banned: Ali Adams tested positive for steroids following his defeat to Audley Harrison in May

Banned: British heavyweight Ali Adams tested positive for steroids following his defeat to Audley Harrison in May (below)

Defeat: Adams was stopped in the fourth round by Sydney 200 Olympics champion Harrison in Essex

UK Anti-Doping legal director Graham Arthur says the positive finding resulted from 'a targeted, intelligence-led test'.

Adams, has a record of 13 wins, four defeats and a draw, contended the stanozolol may have come from medication he was using for a neck injury.

But Arthur says stanozolol 'is banned at all times in sport, there is no reason for it to be found in an athlete's system.'

Audley Harrison says he has fallen back in love with boxing

I'm back in love with boxing for the first time in 10 years, claims Harrison ahead of Price showdown

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UPDATED:

19:35 GMT, 8 August 2012

Audley Harrison insists he is back in love with boxing for the first time in almost a decade as he prepares to face British and Commonwealth heavyweight champion David Price.

The pair will square off at Liverpool's Echo Arena on October 13, with hometown hero Price looking to continue his superb transition to the professional ranks since collecting an Olympic bronze medal in Beijing four years ago.

Harrison also famously has Olympic pedigree as a Sydney 2000 gold medalist, but his career as a paid fighter stands at 28 wins and five defeats, having generally lurched from one well-documented calamity to another.

Face off: David Price and Audley Harrison go head to head at the press conference

Face off: David Price and Audley Harrison go head to head at the press conference

The last time the 40-year-old Londoner stepped through the ropes to top the bill in a north-west arena was in November 2010 for his remarkably meek surrender to then-WBA champion David Haye in Manchester.

Speaking at a press conference in Liverpool today to promote 'The Battle of the Olympians', Harrison candidly referred to his world title tilt as a 'debacle' and claimed a pectoral injury prevented him from completing a single press-up in training camp.

But speaking afterwards, the former European champion pointed to a deeper malaise dating back to a fourth-round knockout of then-undefeated Dutchman Richel Hersisia for the lightly-regarded WBF crown, along with promotional turmoil surrounding the breakdown of his television deal with the BBC.

Not going to plan: The last time Harrison fought in a big title fight he was comprehensively beaten by David Haye

Not going to plan: The last time Harrison fought in a big title fight he was comprehensively beaten by David Haye

'I got to 18-0 before I fell and obviously since I fell I haven't really been able to get myself back onto the pathway,' he explained.

'Richel Hersisia, that was 2004, was the last time I was in love with boxing. I was having a big fight with the BBC, I lost my contract and I fell out of love with boxing.

'I had to sign with (promoter) Frank Warren and, I'm not going to lie, it broke my heart. At that time you saw my professional career capitulate.

'But I can tell you now, Mr Audley Harrison is back in love with boxing. I'm going to enjoy this on October 13.'

Harrison returned to the BBC last year as a contestant on Strictly Come Dancing and April's comeback win over Ali Adams in Brentwood has brought him to this point – going in as a heavy underdog against a man boasting 11 knockouts in an unblemished 13-fight career on a card to be broadcast by Warren's pay-tv channel, Box Nation.

Out for the count: Harrison lies on the canvas after being knocked down by David Haye

Out for the count: Harrison lies on the canvas after being knocked down by David Haye

And yet, despite all the setbacks, Harrison remains focused on an improbably glorious career finale.

'I'm not ready to write my legacy just yet,' he added. “My personal journey as a fighter is still incomplete and I want to finish it on my terms.

'Obviously (the aim is) to win a world title. I've blazed a trail, I've fallen, dropped off, never given up. It's a battle of adversity and I'm going to stay on the course until I finish my way.'

Understandably, Price does not wish to have a role in any such sunset moment and the 29-year-old bristles with a determination to keep his wholly more realistic world title ambitions on track.

'The general perception of Audley Harrison within the public, unfortunately for him, is not a very good one,' he said.

'If I was to lose then my reputation would potentially be in tatters.

'I've got a lot to lose, so I'm going to be so determined the fight goes my way that there's no other possible outcome.

'There's no bad bloody between us because we've got no past. The only past me and Audley have got is similarities in being Olympians and Commonwealth Games gold medalists.

'So there's mutual respect, but it's strictly business on the night. I'm coming through, destroying everything in my path, and I'm hoping to continue that on October 13.'

David Price to fight Audley Harrison in Liverpool on October 13

Price is right for Audley as British heavyweights set date for October fight

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UPDATED:

13:00 GMT, 23 July 2012

David Price will defend his British and Commonwealth heavyweight titles against Audley Harrison at Liverpool's Echo Arena on October 13.

Price, a bronze medal winner at the Beijing Olympics four years ago, will meet the 40-year-old who won gold in Sydney in 2000.

Plenty to say: David Price at the Grand Connaught Rooms in London on Monday

Plenty to say: David Price at the Grand Connaught Rooms in London on Monday

'Audley was an inspiration to me when I was younger, someone our amateur squad always looked up,' said Price.

'He called me before Beijing to offer advice, which I'm grateful for, but he's still getting flattened.'

Price,
29 earlier this month, defeated Sam Sexton to win the vacant British and Commonwealth
titles earlier this year and wants a world title shot before the end of
2013.

Veteran: Audley Harrison (right) in action against David Haye in 2010

Veteran: Audley Harrison (right) in action against David Haye in 2010

Wladimir Klitschko has said he is open to the idea of giving the rising British star a world title shot.

Klitschko holds four versions of the world heavyweight title and says he fancies a defence against the Liverpool boxer.

Harrison is rebuilding his career after a devastating KO at the hands of David Haye in November 2010. He has fought only once since, beating Ali Adams in Brentwood in May.