Tag Archives: couple

Tiger Woods relationship with Lindsey Vonn

Tiger's latest birdie! Woods and US ski star Vonn go public with blossoming romance

By
Mike Dawes

PUBLISHED:

17:58 GMT, 18 March 2013

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UPDATED:

18:19 GMT, 18 March 2013

Tiger Woods has revealed he is dating American skier Lindsey Vonn.

The golfer, who is closing in on Rory McIlroy at the top of the world rankings, announced the news on his website.

Vonn, who is an Olympic champion in alpine skiing, suffered a huge crash earlier this year, tearing ligaments in her knee.

Together: Tiger Woods and downhill skier Lindsey Vonn have announced they are in a relationship

Together: Tiger Woods and downhill skier Lindsey Vonn have announced they are in a relationship

Woods, 37, wrote: 'Something nice that's
happened off the course was meeting Lindsey Vonn.

'Lindsey and I have
been friends for some time, but over the last few months we have become
very close and are now dating.'

'We thank you for your support and for respecting our privacy. We want
to continue our relationship, privately, as an ordinary couple and
continue to compete as athletes.'

'I guess it wasn't a well-kept secret but yes, I am dating Tiger Woods,' Vonn, 28, said.

'Our relationship evolved from a friendship into something more over these past few months and it has made me very happy,'

Golfer Tiger Woods and downhill skier Lindsey Vonn

Golfer Tiger Woods and downhill skier Lindsey Vonn

Happy couple: Woods and Vonn both made announcements following rumours they were dating

'I don't plan on addressing this further as I would like to keep that part of my life between us, my family and close friends.'

The pair have been the subject of romance rumours for some time and last month Woods sent his private jet to fly Vonn home to Vail, Colorado after her crash.

They have also been spotted together in Vail and aboard Wood's yacht in Florida.

Woods, a winner of 14 golf majors, divorced from his Swedish wife, Elin Nordegren, in 2010 after a highly-publicised sex scandal in which he publicly admitted to infidelity.

Vonn announced her split from husband of four years, Thomas Vonn, in November 2011 before finalising the divorce earlier this year.

Crash: Vonn was lifted by a helicopter during the Super-G event of the Ski World Championships

Crash: Vonn was lifted by a helicopter during the Super-G event of the Ski World Championships

Crash: Vonn was lifted by a helicopter during the Super-G event of the Ski World Championships

Crash: Vonn was lifted by a helicopter during the Super-G event of the Ski World Championships

Paul Cox hoping for FA Cup honeymoon against Liverpool after training-ground wedding

Now this really is the magic of the FA Cup! Mansfield boss to get married at TRAINING GROUND ahead of giantkilling bid against Liverpool

By
Ian Ladyman

PUBLISHED:

11:07 GMT, 3 January 2013

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UPDATED:

18:14 GMT, 3 January 2013

Mansfield Town manager Paul Cox will begin the biggest weekend of his life on Friday by marrying his girlfriend at the club’s training ground.

Cox’s team from the Blue Square Premier host giants Liverpool at the One Call Stadium on Sunday in one of the ties of the FA Cup third round.

But Cox will begin the weekend by marrying his girlfriend Natasha Bertin on the training ground next to the stadium after honouring a promise he made to her ahead of the club’s replay with Lincoln in the previous round.

Happy couple: Paul Cox with his bride-to-be Natasha Bertin

Happy couple: Paul Cox with his bride-to-be Natasha Bertin

Countdown: Paul Cox poses at Mansfield's training ground - in front of the marquee in which he will marry

Countdown: Paul Cox poses at Mansfield's training ground – in front of the marquee in which he will marry

Countdown: Paul Cox poses at Mansfield's training ground - in front of the marquee in which he will marry

Having drawn 3-3 at Sincil Bank in the first game, Cox told his partner he would marry her if Mansfield went through and, after a 2-1 win clinched a meeting with Brendan Rodgers’ team, he will keep his word tomorrow when the couple tie the knot in a specially erected marquee.

A Mansfield source said: 'It’s going to be a big three days for Paul.

'He gets married on Friday and then it’s Liverpool on the day of his 41st birthday on Sunday.'

Busy week: Cox is facing a 48 hours at Mansfield

Busy week: Cox is facing a 48 hours at Mansfield

Hope the weather improves... the view at Mansfield's training ground

Hope the weather improves… the view at Mansfield's training ground

Mansfield are currently ninth in the Blue Square after losing out in the promotion play-offs last season.

The club applied for permission to use their full capacity to 10,000 for Sunday’s game but their request was rejected on safety grounds. There will be only 7,500 fans in the stadium, meaning that club will lose in the region of 50,000 in possible takings.

Mario Balotelli"s brother Enoch Barwuah arrested for assault in Italy

Balotelli's brother Enoch arrested for assaulting two policemen in Italy

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UPDATED:

13:31 GMT, 25 December 2012

In trouble: Mario Balotelli's (left) brother Enoch Barwuah (right) was arrested in Italy for assaulting two police officers

In trouble: Mario Balotelli's (left) brother Enoch Barwuah (right) was arrested in Italy for assaulting two police officers

Manchester City star Mario Balotelli's brother appeared in an Italian court on Christmas Eve accused of assaulting two policemen.

Enoch Barwuah, 20, who had trials with Stoke City and Sunderland before signing for Salford City last month, was held after a brawl at a bar and kept in custody until his appearance before a judge.

The court heard how he had been attacked as he drank in a bar in Brescia with his sister Abigail by a man who ripped his shirt but Barwuah then turned on police who had been called by the owner.

Officers said they found him in the street shirtless and barefooted and when they approached they were kicked and punched, while their squad car was also damaged in the incident.

The court bailed Barwuah to his home address in Brescia until January 3, when he will have a fast track trial accused of a assault and resisting arrest. At his hearing he apologised and said his reactions had been 'unjustified' but he had become concerned after his sister 'felt ill' during the attack.

Barwuah is Balotelli's younger brother and apart from Abigail he also has a sister Angel – they remained with his natural parents while he was adopted as a baby by a wealthy Italian couple.

Sunderland fans spur on manager Martin O"Neill

Sunderland faithful spur on manager O'Neill as 2,000 fans make trip to Southampton

PUBLISHED:

22:17 GMT, 21 December 2012

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UPDATED:

22:17 GMT, 21 December 2012

More than 2,000 Sunderland supporters will make the 300-plus mile trip to Southampton on Saturday.

The away allocation is sold out and
manager Martin O'Neill says such commitment to the club's cause, just
three days before Christmas, is one reason why he is desperate to
succeed for the club.

Focused: Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill

Focused: Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill

O'Neill said: 'That really sums it up. Last year we went down and played Tottenham and then a couple of days later we played at QPR a couple of days before Christmas and we filled the stand behind the goal which is absolutely remarkable support.

'They're travelling down to Southampton in their numbers three or four days before Christmas shows you all you need to know about this club. It's great motivation for us to achieve something for the club.

'You work every single day to try and put a mark on the club and try and improve results and it's for people like that who're the heart and soul of the football club.'

Sunderland have recalled Republic of Ireland international David Meyler from his loan spell at Hull City.

The midfielder has scored twice in a successful month at the Championship club with former manager Steve Bruce.

O'Neill added: 'At least if he gets on the field of play with us, which I imagine he will, his fitness levels won't worry me as much as it might have done before.'

Scott Parker scores for Tottenham reserves

Great Scott! Tottenham's Parker makes goalscoring return in U21 match against Villa

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UPDATED:

00:10 GMT, 18 December 2012

Scott Parker continued his steady return to football by netting for Tottenham's Under 21s this evening.

The England international, who is being gradually eased back into football after an achilles injury, scored on the stroke of half-time as part of the Tottenham Under 21 outfit who travelled to Aston Villa this evening.

Parker, who scored Spurs' second goal in a convincing 3-0 win, made a cameo appearance on Sunday for Tottenham's senior squad when they beat Swansea 1-0 at White Hart Lane.

Back in the goals: Scott Parker scored for Tottenham's Under 21s when they travelled to Aston Villa

Back in the goals: Scott Parker scored for Tottenham's Under 21s when they travelled to Aston Villa

The 32-year-old had not played for Tottenham all season before Sunday's victory, and was only handed a couple of minutes' football when he replaced Mousa Dembele late in the match.

The former Charlton, Chelsea and West Ham midfielder was given a start this evening for Tottenham's Under 21s.

Having recently returned to football after picking up the injury with Roy Hodgson's England team at Euro 2012, Parker wasted little time back on the pitch tonight by coolly slotting home after 45 minutes.

When fully fit, Parker still faces a tough task of forcing his way back into the Tottenham first team.

Dembele has looked like an incredible signing since his arrival from Fulham this summer, and Sandro has proved to be an integral member of Villas-Boas' squad with some stellar performances this term.

Meanwhile,Tottenham left back Benoit Assou-Ekotto could also be fit to play against Stoke at home on Saturday after being out for three months with a knee injury.

Welcome back: Parker received a couple of minutes' football when he replaced Mousa Dembele against Swansea

Welcome back: Parker received a couple of minutes' football when he replaced Mousa Dembele against Swansea

Harry Redknapp hails Adel Taarabt after QPR score first win

Redknapp hails two-goal Taarabt after star midfielder helps QPR to first win

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UPDATED:

20:21 GMT, 15 December 2012

QPR boss Harry Redknapp lavished praise on Adel Taarabt after he scored twice to help Rangers to their first Barclays Premier League win of the season.

The Morocco international scored two second half goals as QPR beat local rivals Fulham 2-1 at Loftus Road to move off the foot of the table.

It was the first win under Redknapp and QPR's first league victory since they beat Stoke on May 6.

On song: Adel Taarabt struck twice as QPR scored their first victory in the league this season

On song: Adel Taarabt struck twice as QPR scored their first victory in the league this season

Taarabt was inspirational for most of the game and Redknapp enthused about his match-winning contribution.

'(He has) Fantastic ability, he was amazing today,' said Redknapp.

'He is an amazing talent, we all know that and we have all seen it since I went to Tottenham, no-one ever doubted his ability or his talent.

'I decided I had to get him in a position where he wants to play.

'He has been playing off the left but today I played him in the hole, off the front man and tried to get him between the lines – play little balls in those holes to him and every time he got the ball they were in trouble.'

Rangers dominated for much of the game but conceded a late goal through a deflected Mladen Petric strike and Redknapp admitted the goal led to a tense final few moments at Loftus Road.

'We deserved it (the win),' he said. 'I thought we were the better team and it would have been a travesty if we had conceded another goal in those hectic couple of minutes went they pushed (Brede) Hangeland up and bombed it into our box.

'When you have not won, psychologically the players must have been thinking “oh my God” when they have got the goal and they think an equaliser is going to come, it must have been difficult.

'It was difficult for me watching that last four minutes and they must have felt the same but we hung in there and got the result we deserved.'

Impressed: Harry Redknapp (left) was delighted with the mighty Moroccan

Impressed: Harry Redknapp (left) was delighted with the mighty Moroccan

The result moves QPR onto 10 points and above Reading into 19th place and Redknapp felt it was a necessity to end the winless run before they were cut adrift.

'At least it keeps us in there, if we hadn't won today it would have been absolutely desperate,' he said.

'It is going to be tough, we are not going to kid ourselves but we have had one win but we are on a good run, we have had four games and taken six points.

'If you can take six points from every four games you will stay up – hopefully that can kick-start our season now and keep us going.'

Former Tottenham boss Redknapp was congratulated by his chairman Tony Fernandes at full-time and dedicated the victory to the Malaysian.

'I met him today for the first time, he came down and he was delighted – he was so pleased,' he said.

'The people here deserve it – as I've said a million times they are nice people and they deserve that win today so that was good, I was delighted for them today.'

Fernandes said at the end of the match that he was glad to pick up a first league win of the campaign and likened it to winning the league.

'I am a very relieved man. That is the best Christmas present ever,' he said.

That's more like it: QPR chief Tony Fernandes was very happy with the win

That's more like it: QPR chief Tony Fernandes was very happy with the win

'It was a great team effort, they deserved it. We've been threatening for a while and what a way to get the winning goal.

'It is looking good and we're undefeated under Harry. I feel like I have won the championship.'

Fulham boss Martin Jol felt the majority of his players who played well in Monday's 2-1 win at home to Newcastle had not turned up at Loftus Road.

'I'm very disappointed with our style of play – I can complain about the goals but especially first half we never looked to earn the right to use our quality,' he said.

'We looked a bit rigid. On Monday we had players in midfield, like they had Adel today, they need to travel and do something extra.

'We didn't do the simple things or play in the flow. I wanted to give 10 of the 11 players who played last week the chance to do it again but there were too many players not there.'

The Dutchman also felt the defending from his side could have been better for both of Taarabt's goals.

'The second goal for example was very cheap and easy and the second was a deflection.

We tried to get in their half and the passing was sloppy and they could break us away from home. Our two central midfield players could never get up the pitch and support.'

New Zealand star Dan Carter winning fitness battle for England showdown

New Zealand fly-half Carter winning battle to be fit for England showdown

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UPDATED:

15:08 GMT, 27 November 2012

New Zealand fly-half Dan Carter is confident he will be fit for Saturday's clash with England at Twickenham.

Carter missed last Saturday's 33-10
defeat by Wales with achilles and calf problems, but expects to return
for the All Blacks' final match of the year.

Welcome sight: New Zealand's Dan Carter (C) during training

Welcome sight: New Zealand's Dan Carter (C) during training

'Hopefully I'll be ready, nothing's changed over the last couple of days,” he said.

'The plan was to get through training and it was pretty light today, I didn't go over 50%. I got through it well.

'We're looking after it well and doing everything right to be ready for this weekend.

Just the ticket: Carter out in London on Tuesday

Just the ticket: Carter out in London on Tuesday

'I'm pretty confident I'll be right to play, I just need some positive thinking.

'It's the last game of the year and I want to be part of it.'

Toby Flood: England Captain Chris Robshaw had a 50-50 call

Chris had to make a 50-50 call, and we all back him completely

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UPDATED:

21:31 GMT, 24 November 2012

Being captain is a lonely place to be
sometimes and Chris Robshaw made the call he felt was right at the time
and he has the boys' total support for kicking at goal rather than
going for the corner.

It was one of those horrible fifty-fifty decisions.

When there's four points in it and
you go for the corner they can continue to give away penalties and just
keep on killing the ball and running down the clock.

Toe problems: Toby Flood kicks a penalty for England

Toe problems: Toby Flood kicks a penalty for England

Because the time got so short, and with the conditions as they were, it meant getting the ball back into drop-goal range was going to be difficult.

It was a horrible decision for Chris to have to make and off the back of what happened last week, when he got slated for a collective decision to go for the corner rather than take the three points, he went for the posts.

As it turned out, the best thing that could have happened was if it had hit the post and stayed in play.

But there's no way Chris should be criticised for that.

Tough call: Chris Robshaw tells Owen Farrell (right) to kick for goal

Tough call: Chris Robshaw tells Owen Farrell (right) to kick for goal

He knows it was an important decision and he's a smart enough guy to know that having lost by one point things could have been different.

But it doesn't just come down to the captain, it comes down to all of us.

From a personal point of view, having to walk off the pitch injured after 47 minutes was hugely disappointing.

When you put in all that work throughout the week and then you're not be able to complete a full 80 minutes through injury is incredibly frustrating.

I got a knock to the head in the first couple of minutes and tried to get up a couple of times and slightly humorously fell over – I must have done something to my big toe when I fell.

Better form: Ben Youngs kicks for England

Better form: Ben Youngs kicks for England

It wasn't for another 15 or 20 minutes until I realised how sore it was and that it was affecting me when I struck the ball.

I don't want to hide behind the injury, it wasn't that I couldn't hit the ball at all, but the second one I missed was really, really disappointing.

The injury definitely affected my kicking.

I'll have to wait to see what the X-ray shows and, while there is no bone fracture, it doesn't look great.

Overall I'd say that the performance was positive, but that's a small consolation.

We created chances and made some breaks but were still not able to convert them.

Missed chances: England didn't convert their opportunities

Missed chances: England didn't convert their opportunities

The game got unstructured but that's when you need to make smart decisions because that's what teams like South Africa and the All Blacks do.

The whole game swung on that freak, freak try just after half-time.

It was utterly surreal.

There really is very little you can do to defend against something like that and I actually think we responded brilliantly to going behind in that manner.

We talked about it under the posts and accepted there was nothing we could have done about it and got on with battling our way back into the game.

Freak try: Willem Alberts scores for South Africa

Freak try: Willem Alberts scores for South Africa

That showed great character and spirit in the side and we should be really encouraged by how we fought our way back into contention against a world-class side like South Africa.

Overall, of course we're disappointed, but we can't lose faith. We are running these top sides incredibly close and we have to maintain belief in what we're doing.

It's a results-driven business but I've been more disappointed this autumn than any other because it's only very small margins that are making the difference.

Stuart will pick the guys up and we will get it right.

Paul Gascoigne: Sportsmail"s favourite Gazza stories

The good, the bad and the ridiculous – Sportsmail's favourite Gazza stories

PUBLISHED:

11:14 GMT, 22 November 2012

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UPDATED:

12:57 GMT, 22 November 2012

Paul Gascoigne will always have a very special place in the hearts of Tottenham and Lazio fans and with the two squaring up in the Europa League, the former England star has been invited to watch the action in Rome's Olympic Stadium.

It's 20 years since Gazza swapped White Hart Lane for the Italian capital and here, Sportsmail writers and photographers share their favourite memories of one of the best midfielders and brightest characters to have graced the game.

Lazio lad: Paul Gascoigne

Spurred on: Paul Gascoigne

When in Rome: Paul Gascoigne is set to watch two of his former clubs in action in the Europa League

……………………………………………………………………………..

LEE CLAYTON
I went to Botswana with him and I
can’t tell all the stories, but he was brilliant company, dazzled on the
pitch, scored a couple of goals past me and made me wish him all the best.

He once threatened to send me ‘back in a box’ when I approached him for an interview in Portugal a few years back.

But on a trip to Africa in 2006, to
promote the FA’s work abroad (including visiting an orphanage and a
hospital specialising in treatment for children with AIDS ) he was in good form.

In the wild: Our man Lee Clayton with Paul Gascoigne and a couple of friends they met in Botswana

In the wild: Our man Lee Clayton with Paul Gascoigne and a couple of friends they met in Botswana

We parted at Heathrow with a kiss (him, not me) and stayed in touch after.

The kids loved seeing him and so did the cheetahs during a visit to a wildlife centre.

In company, he was fine. He even overcame his hatred for flying. His demons were never far away, but he seemed happy.

He said he had lost his love for English football because it was ‘dull’. He wasn’t dull.

MATT BARLOW
The fondest memories are of those gliding runs and explosions of pace and the trail of bodies he would leave in his wake.

The most shocking memory, the tackle that wiped out his knee in the FA Cup final.

I will never tire of hearing the thousands of (perhaps slightly embellished) stories from his career. Climbing into a tumble dryer at Newcastle and emerging so dizzy he couldn’t stand.

Appearing naked on the front seat beside Dino Zoff when the team bus came out of a tunnel and into daylight.

Emotional: Gascoigne in tears was one of THE images of Italia 90

Emotional: Gascoigne in tears was one of THE images of Italia 90

Covering himself in ketchup and lying beneath Bobby Robson’s balcony at the team hotel during Italia 90.

Or when Matt Holland asked him why he had 'Holland 8' written on the back of his hand and was told it was because he had been told to mark him at corners.

But my favourite memory is when my mate Steve copied his hairdo, around 1990, the one with it
all brushed forward with a little fringe, and unwittingly revealed for
the first time how abnormally large his head actually was. Good old Gazza.

DOMINIC KING
I sadly never covered Everton when Gazza was playing there but I do know several stories about him.

One which springs to mind is when he entertained
a packed restaurant one Sunday afternoon by letting a parrot that had
been bought for him by his erstwhile sidekick Jimmy Fivebellies out of its cage. The squawking was apparently deafening.

As for his football, the goal he scored against Scotland at Euro 96 epitomised his genius. What a crying shame his demons prevented him reaching astral heights.

Thirsty work: Gazza's celebration after scoring against Scotland is also unforgettable

Thirsty work: Gazza's celebration after scoring against Scotland is also unforgettable

CHRIS WHEELER
It was rude and it was wrong, but it
has to be the moment before England’s World Cup qualifier with Norway in
October 1992 when Gazza was asked by NRK network reporter Thor Eggen if he would like to send a message to Norway.

‘Yes,’ replied Gazza. ‘F*** off Norway!’

LAURA WILLIAMSON
I know it’s predictable, but it’s that goal against Scotland at Euro ‘96. I was still at primary school and I remember watching it in awe…and then laughing.

I can appreciate the vision, talent and audacity now, but back then it was the sheer joy of a wonderful sporting moment – and fact Gazza seemed just as happy and excited as me.

GRAHAM CHADWICK
My favourite picture is the one of him and Vinnie Jones taken when Newcastle played Wimbledon at Plough Lane in 1988.

Taken by the great Monte Fresco, it gave me the inspiration to get into sports photography.

Ouch: Vinnie Jones gets to grips with Gazza in one of the most famous photgraphs in football

Ouch: Vinnie Jones gets to grips with Gazza in one of the most famous photgraphs in football

KEVIN QUIGLEY
My personal favourite was when I was working for The People and was sent to do a feature with Gazza and Jimmy Greaves.

They were doing a stand-up Q&A and when I got there Jimmy didn’t really like my idea of a head-to-head picture.

Gazza being Gazza shoved his face up to Greavsie's nose… then said: 'Hope you've got it.'

Really nice guy for such a big star.

What a pair: Gazza and Greavsie were entertainers on and off the pitch

What a pair: Gazza and Greavsie were entertainers on and off the pitch

And finally….Adam Shergold says:

'My favourite Gazza memory will be totally different from the others here – it was the extraordinary six weeks he spent at my club, Boston United, in the summer of 2004.

United were by this time established in the Football League and evidently had ambitions of a kind and a whole load of persuasive power to entice Gascoigne to south Lincolnshire.

After all, Boston hardly has the nightlife he might be used to and is miles from anywhere.

It had been two years since he played in England – at Burnley – and a year since he joined Gansu Tianma in China, purely for the sake of an accompanying ITV documentary I might venture.

No tea party: Gazza had a brief spell at Boston in 2004

No tea party: Gazza had a brief spell at Boston in 2004

He rocked up about a month before the start of the League Two season and, to be fair to the 37-year-old, looked in good shape.

I later heard from friends in and around the club that he was on a strict regime of going to the gym three times a day and subsisted exclusively on Bran Flakes.

With hindsight, he looked too fit – all skin and bone with a pale complexion.

You could kind of tell this wasn't going to be a permanent change of club by the fact Gazza holed himself up in a suite in the New England hotel, rather than look for a property in the area.

Unsurprisingly in such a sleepy town, Gazza was pretty bored. My dad, who works at the nearby Toyota dealership, had the surreal sight of Gazza walking in and asking for a test drive on a new model to pass the time.

On the pitch, it seemed Gazza was knuckling down to the hard graft but his performances, frankly, tallied with those of a faded diamond.

I remember three things – a pre-season match with a youth team from his old club Newcastle in which he sprayed magic 60-yard passes without a second thought, having put another 1,000 on the gate and attracted all the regional news crews to York Street.

Steve Evans, our manager at the time, brought him off the bench in the derby with Lincoln at Sincil Bank – and he immediately put in two pin-point crosses to earn us a 2-2 draw.

And in a game against Chester, he actually avoided a second yellow card by kissing the referee.

But after just four league appearances, Gazza had checked out of the New England, handed back the keys to his hire car and left the club.

Allegedly it was because United wouldn't allow him to appear on 'I'm a Celebrity.'

But it was probably 'I'm a star in a small backwater… get me out of here!'

All in all, a very strange, if exciting, episode.

Steven Gerrard should quit leave Liverpool and join "a big international club", says Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Gerrard should leave Liverpool and join 'a big international club', says Ibrahimovic

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UPDATED:

06:32 GMT, 14 November 2012

Sweden captain Zlatan Ibrahimovic has urged England counterpart Steven Gerrard to quit Liverpool and move to 'a big international club'.

Gerrard is poised to win his 100th cap in this evening's friendly international between the two countries to mark the opening of the Friends Arena in Stockholm.

Ton up: Steven Gerrard set to make his 100th appearance for England in Sweden

Ton up: Steven Gerrard set to make his 100th appearance for England in Sweden

Ibrahimovic is a big admirer of Gerrard but feels he should leave Anfield after more than a decade of loyal service spanning over 600 games.

The Paris St Germain striker said: 'Steven Gerrard is respected throughout Europe and is always the player the coach says to be careful with because he is the one that makes the difference.

'But, although of course Liverpool is a big club, I would like to see Steven at a big international club.

'I would like to see that also for England because it is very exciting when someone goes abroad and shows who he is in another competition.

'For me, a fantastic player can make the difference in every country wherever he plays. I'm pretty sure Steven would do that also.'

Centre of attention: Sweden's captain Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Centre of attention: Sweden's captain Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Sweden coach Erik Hamren admits he has little knowledge of Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha after his surprise call-up into the England squad.

But he has cautioned against expecting too much too soon from the 20-year-old. Hamren said: 'I don't know about him. I will have some information.

'I have a scout so he can look but, for this game, I haven't been so focused on England because we have only had a couple of days to prepare.

'But I hope I will not have a bad surprise from this player (Zaha). Sometimes you (the media) get carried away. You have to need these heroes and stars and sometimes you make them a star too early.

'Then it is a problem for a player. It is better to make him a star when he is a star because we have seen some examples of that in world football.

'I hope he is not a star tomorrow but in the future, I hope you are right.'