Tag Archives: formal

Didier Drogba"s move to Galatasaray challenged by Shanghai Shenhua

He's still our player: Shanghai Shenhua set to challenge Drogba's move to Galatasaray

officially signed a formal contract for a period of two and a half years. The club has acted in accordance with this contract, and has effectively fulfilled the responsibilities and obligations of the club.

'Currently, Drogba is still a player of Shanghai Shenhua Football Club, the contract between the two parties is still within the period of validity.

'Shanghai Shenhua is prepared to collate all the evidence and information and submit it to FIFA in order to protect its interests.'

On Monday, Galatasaray announced that Drogba had agreed an 18-month deal to move to Turkey, where he would join up with Wesley Sneijder as part of an ambitious new-look side.

Drogba, speaking through his representatives Sports PR Company on Twitter, said at the time: 'The opportunity to play for this great club was an offer that I could not turn down.

Out of Africa: Drogba is currently playing at the Africa Cup of Nations for the Ivory Coast

Out of Africa: Drogba is currently playing at the Africa Cup of Nations for the Ivory Coast

'I am looking forward to playing in the Champions League again, against the best clubs in Europe.'

Despite his protests to the contrary, reports persisted that Drogba's move to China had not worked out, largely due to boardroom wrangling, prompting him to seek a return to Europe.

Theo Walcott given deadline by Arsenal to sign new contract

Arsenal set two-week deadline for in-form Walcott to sign new deal to keep him at Emirates

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UPDATED:

22:50 GMT, 30 December 2012

Arsenal want Theo Walcott's long-term future secured within the next fortnight.

Club officials are working to set up a second round of formal contract discussions with the player and his representatives in the next 14 days.

Arsenal are increasingly optimistic a deal can be reached. Sportsmail understands the 23-year-old's preference is to stay.

Main man: Theo Walcott was in exceptional form against Newcastle

Main man: Theo Walcott was in exceptional form against Newcastle

But the original 75,000-per-week offer made on August 28 must be improved, while Walcott also wants assurances over his chances of playing as a centre forward on a regular basis.

The England star wants a package closer to 100,000 per week, but it is believed a deal of 85,000 or 90,000 would suit both parties.

Meanwhile, Arsenal will this week make their move to sign Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha.

The Gunners are set to increase their starting offer to beat Manchester United to the England player's signature.

Arsenal had originally planned to make an 8million opening bid for the 20-year-old starlet, who wants to leave Selhurst Park in January.

However, they are considering a more lucrative starting offer to ensure Zaha's arrival.

Deadline: Arsenal want Walcott's new deal sewn up within the next two weeks

Deadline: Arsenal want Walcott's new deal sewn up within the next two weeks

Icing on the cake: Walcott scores his third and Arsenal's seventh

Icing on the cake: Walcott scores his third and Arsenal's seventh

Theo Walcott to sign new Arsenal deal as Jack Wilshere, Kieran Gibbs, Aaron Ramsey and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain follow

It's good to talk: Walcott makes peace as Arsenal agree deals with Wilshere, Gibbs, Ramsey, Oxlade-Chamberlain and Jenkinson

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UPDATED:

23:06 GMT, 18 December 2012

Theo Walcott has held peace talks with Arsene Wenger as Arsenal close in on securing the futures of their British core.

It is the first time since August 28, when the England forward turned down a five-year contract worth 75,000 a week, that formal discussions between player and club have taken place.

And in further good news Sportsmail understands Arsenal are set to agree deals with five of their other young British stars by Friday.

Crisp finisher: Theo Walcott hit the fifth as Arsenal demolished Reading, and the 23-year-old looks set to end uncertainty about his future by extending his Arsenal deal

Crisp finisher: Theo Walcott hit the fifth as Arsenal demolished Reading, and the 23-year-old looks set to end uncertainty about his future by extending his Arsenal deal

Made up: Arsene Wenger and Walcott

Sources close to Walcott insist the 23-year-old wants to stay at Arsenal. However, he is said to have made it clear he is still currently unwilling to pen fresh terms.

As well as wanting a deal closer to 100,000 a week, Walcott also wants assurances over his role at the club.

The former Southampton man felt he was being treated unfairly by Wenger during the early weeks of the season and spent the majority of Arsenal’s opening games sat on the bench. This decision is understood to have been motivated by the contract dispute rather than footballing reasons.

In addition, Walcott also wants assurances that he will be given more opportunities to play as a central striker — where he played against Reading on Monday and scored in the 5-2 win.

The main man: Walcott wants to be utilised as a No 9

The main man: Walcott wants to be utilised as a No 9

And while it seems there will be no quick resolution to the contract saga, the latest discussions are viewed as a significant step towards persuading Walcott to stay.

It is believed that a compromise solution of an 85,000-a-week contract may be enough to persuade him to sign.

Walcott may be some way from signing but Arsenal are convinced they have agreed new deals with Jack Wilshere, Kieran Gibbs, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Aaron Ramsey and Carl Jenkinson and it is thought they will sign by the end of the week.

Sportsmail exclusively revealed on November 28 that England midfielder Wilshere was set to sign fresh terms — and he will put pen to paper on a new five-year contract worth 80,000 a week.

Staying power: Jack Wilshere will sign a new deal at the Emirates

Staying power: Jack Wilshere will sign a new deal at the Emirates

Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ramsey, Gibbs and Jenkinson have agreed five-year deals worth between 40,000 and 60,000 a week.

Arsenal’s push to keep their best British talent indicates a deliberate shift in Wenger’s thinking.

After basing his sides around foreign players for years, the manager seems to have had a change of heart after the likes of Robin van Persie, Cesc Fabregas, Samir Nasri and Gael Clichy all left the Emirates Stadium.

Speaking after the thumping win at Reading, Wenger said: ‘We have a core of good young English players and I hope we will be able to build a team around them and that they can achieve something together.’

Bright young things Oxlade-Chamberlain

Bright young things: Kieran Gibbs

Bright young things: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (left) and Kieran Gibbs have also signed new deals

Arsenal rift over Theo Walcott as Arsene Wenger blocks January sale of contract rebel

EXCLUSIVE: Arsenal rift over Walcott as Wenger blocks January sale of contract rebel

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UPDATED:

22:42 GMT, 7 December 2012

Arsene Wenger will plead with Arsenal
not to sell Theo Walcott in January as it emerged discussions over a
new contract have come to a halt.

Publicly, the Frenchman insists talks with Walcott and his advisers over fresh terms are ongoing.

Eyes on the future: Arsene Wenger is frustrated by the on-going negotiations with his star man

Eyes on the future: Arsene Wenger is frustrated by the on-going negotiations with his star man

But Sportsmail understands no formal discussions between the two parties have taken place since August 28, when Walcott turned down a five-year 75,000-per-week deal.

And with just three weeks to go until the transfer window reopens, there are currently no plans in place for further discussions.

Therefore, it is looking increasingly likely that Walcott will go into January with just six months left on his contract.

The 23-year-old could sign a pre-contract agreement with a foreign club from January 1 or join a Premier League side on a free transfer at the end of the season.

The Gunners will look to sell Walcott, whose preference is to stay at the club, in January if a deal is not agreed to avoid him leaving for nothing. But Wenger would prefer Walcott to stay until at least the summer and will make his point to the Arsenal hierarchy.

However, club chiefs are highly likely to press ahead with plans to recoup as much money as possible for Walcott next month.

Wenger made similar overtures to the Gunners board during the Samir Nasri and Robin van Persie sagas — yet both were sold as they entered the final 12 months of their contracts.

Speaking yesterday, Wenger said: ‘I am frustrated, honestly. If you ask me will we sell Theo in January, no. I have always been hopeful he will sign.’

Liverpool want to sign Walcott in January, while Manchester City and Chelsea will offer the former Southampton forward lucrative free transfers in the summer.

Should I stay or go now: Theo Walcott is at loggerheads with Arsenal over his new deal

Should I stay or go now: Theo Walcott is at loggerheads with Arsenal over his new deal

Arsenal confident of signing Wilfried Zaha

Arsenal confident of luring Palace starlet Zaha ahead of 9m January bid

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UPDATED:

07:15 GMT, 7 December 2012

Arsenal are growing increasingly confident they have won the race to land Crystal Palace wonderkid Wilfried Zaha.

The 20-year-old England international is a prime target for Arsene Wenger and the club will make a starting 9million offer next month.

Wanted: Wilfried Zaha (centre) has attracted the interest of several top clubs

Wanted: Wilfried Zaha (centre) has attracted the interest of several top clubs

And the Gunners believe they are in pole position to land the Ivory Coast-born forward.

Zaha – who is an Arsenal fan – is understood to have made the Emirates Stadium his first-choice.

In the market: Arsene Wenger is desperate to strengthen his ailing squad

In the market: Arsene Wenger is desperate to strengthen his ailing squad

Arsenal are still to conclude a deal with Palace, but the club will open formal discussions soon.

Zaha is also a target for Manchester United, Manchester City and Newcastle.

Norwich complain over alleged racial abuse at Sebastien Bassong

Norwich use Twitter grabs in complaint to police over alleged racist abuse aimed at Bassong

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UPDATED:

18:31 GMT, 26 November 2012

Norwich have made a formal complaint to police over alleged racist tweets directed at defender Sebastien Bassong.

The Canaries confirmed they had passed on evidence to Norfolk Constabulary which was supplied to them by supporters in the wake of Saturday's Barclays Premier League draw at Everton.

It is understood Norwich have sent police screen-grabs of tweets that have since been deleted from Twitter accounts that no longer exist.

Levelling up: Sebastien Bassong earns a point for Norwich with his late goal

Levelling up: Sebastien Bassong earns a point for Norwich with his late goal

Manager Chris Hughton told a press
conference today it was 'hugely disappointing' to learn of the alleged
abuse of Bassong, who scored a stoppage-time equaliser in the 1-1 draw
at Goodison Park.

He added of the tweets: 'We have taken the appropriate action and passed them on to police.'

The alleged racist abuse of Bassong
took place almost a year to the day that Norwich reported similar tweets
directed at former Everton striker James Vaughan.

Bassong's goal at Goodison extended
the Canaries' unbeaten run to seven matches in all competitions ahead of
Wednesday's trip to Southampton, which is followed by games against
Sunderland, Swansea, Aston Villa and Wigan.

Hughton's men will be confident of
maintaining their good form, although the settled line-up could be
disrupted by injuries to John Ruddy and Michael Turner.

Hughton confirmed Turner would be out
for 'a few weeks' with the shoulder injury that kept him out of the
Everton game, which saw Ruddy substituted late on with a thigh problem.

Heading for a draw: Bassong was allegedly racially abused on Twitter

Heading for a draw: Bassong was allegedly racially abused on Twitter

If Ruddy fails to recover, Mark Bunn will make his first Premier League start for the club.

After an awful start to the season, Southampton have hauled themselves out of the drop zone with back-to-back wins.

Hughton said: 'They have been playing well and come into it on the back of two great wins, so we know that it will be tough.

'We are also on a good run of results and need to maintain our recent high standards on Wednesday evening.'

Wednesday's match also heralds the return of Mark Clattenburg to refereeing following the dismissal of allegations he racially abused Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel.

The 37-year-old was the fourth official in Tottenham's win over West Ham yesterday but Wednesday will mark a month since he was last the man in the middle.

Hughton said: 'I think he will get a good reception.

'I, for one, am certainly pleased he is back after all that happened.'

Mark Clattenburg latest: Chelsea want talks with Mike Riley to clear the air

Chelsea seek clear the air talks with referee chief Riley after Clattenburg debacle

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UPDATED:

23:09 GMT, 23 November 2012

Chelsea will hold talks with referees’ chief Mike Riley as part of a reconciliation attempt with Mark Clattenburg.

Although
they will stop short of a formal apology for accusing him of calling
John Mikel Obi ‘a monkey’, they do want to clear the air.

Returning to action: Chelsea will say they are happy to have Mark Clattenburg back to referee after the race row with John Mikel Obi (below left) was dimissed

Returning to action: Chelsea will say they are happy to have Mark Clattenburg back to referee after the race row with John Mikel Obi (below left) was dimissed

John Obi Mikel

Mark Clattenburg

They will also tell Riley, head of
the Professional Game Match Officials Board, that they are happy for
Clattenburg to officiate Chelsea games after he was cleared by the FA of
saying ‘Shut up you monkey’ to Mikel on October 28.

Riley has made it clear Clattenburg will be involved in officiating future Blues matches.

Mikel has been charged with improper
conduct following his dressing-room confrontation with Clattenburg after
Chelsea’s 3-2 home defeat by Manchester United.

Mikel has admitted the charge and could get a lengthy ban as Sportsmail understands part of the charge relates to his use of threatening language towards the referee.

Alan Leighton, national secretary of
the referees’ union Prospect, has said they did not intend to take legal
action against Chelsea, but the club should feel morally obliged to
make amends via an apology and compensation.

‘This is about an individual who has
been badly wronged and there is not even recognition about what they
have done and that is staggering,’ Leighton said.

Clattenburg will return to action as
fourth official for Tottenham’s home game with West Ham tomorrow. He
will referee Southampton’s clash with Norwich on Wednesday.

His return has been welcomed by
Premier League managers including Aston Villa’s Paul Lambert. ‘Quite
rightly the guy’s been acquitted. It’s been a mess,’ he said.

Sources close to Clattenburg say he just wants to put the nightmare behind him and continue with his career.

Sitting out: Clattenburg has not taken charge of a game since the match against Manchester United last month

Sitting out: Clattenburg has not taken charge of a game since the match against Manchester United last month

Gianni Paladini blasts Birmingham City chief Peter Pannu after takeover snub

Don't treat me like an idiot! Paladini blasts Birmingham chief Pannu after takeover snub

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UPDATED:

18:23 GMT, 15 November 2012

Gianni Paladini has accused Birmingham City's acting chairman Peter Pannu of treating him like 'an idiot' after the Italian's 29.7m offer to buy the Championship club collapsed.

The former chief executive of QPR had tabled a bid to purchase the Blues from Carson Yeung and had been undertaking due diligence with a view to completing the deal in the next fortnight.

Upset: Gianni Paladini

Upset: Gianni Paladini

But Pannu on Wednesday surprisingly issued a statement flatly denying that any talks had taken place between the two parties, a move that sparked a furious response from the former agent.

Paladini maintained that he had proof that the deal was some way down the line and even said agreement had been reached over Pannu's cut – understood to be in excess of 2m – as evidence that the two sides had been in negotiations.

Pannu, who in Yeung's absence is the decision-maker at St Andrew's, said: 'There are no active negotiations with the group involving Gianni Paladini or any of his associates.

'Should there be any agreement reached, there should be formal announcements made in Hong Kong and also in the UK.'

Paladini expressed his fury at the snub and was dumbfounded by Pannu's denial that there had even been any contact between potential buyer and sell.

Former agent Paladini said: 'His statement makes us look like idiots. We have agreed a price and everything.

'He (Pannu) doesn't want to talk to us. So we are pulling out of the deal. I'm very disappointed, but what can I do

'The only way the deal can be revived is for him to take our deal.

'If he doesn't see that, there's nothing I can do. And if he doesn't want to sell there's nothing I can do.

'But I can show you proof that we have talked. I even reached an agreement with his lawyer about his commission.

'So what's he talking about

'We want to be in before he sells all the players in January. I don't want to come in February when the club is in a right mess.

'I'm disappointed for the fans. We have worked hard to make this deal happen. Mr Pannu doesn't want to sell. He knows the deal – everything has been agreed. What else can I do

'I'm very disappointed. We have been working on this for three months. I was looking forward to it. I could have done a fantastic deal for the club.'

Mark Clattenburg allegations: Arsene Wenger hits out at Chelsea

Wenger hits out at Chelsea for Clattenburg allegations and asks… where's your proof

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UPDATED:

14:10 GMT, 1 November 2012

Allegations: Clattenburg

Allegations: Clattenburg

Arsene Wenger has criticised Chelsea for making a public complaint about referee Mark Clattenburg and said the allegations have ‘little proof’.

Chelsea have formally accused the official of racially abusing John Obi Mikel during Sunday’s 3-2 defeat by Manchester United, but the Arsenal boss said he would prefer to see such matters dealt with internally. Clattenburg is also facing a police investigation after a formal complaint was made by the Society of Black Lawyers.

Wenger said: ‘I believe one of the best things in sport is it’s a battle when it is on. You can sort out the problems you had, especially in England, internally. If it comes to making the lawyers rich I’m not a fan of it.

‘One of the great things in sports as well is tolerance, forgiveness and explanation internally and I think it should stay like that. It can happen that a referee doesn't behave well, I do not say they are angels, but it is always better to sort it out in the room.’

‘I didn’t follow the whole (Chelsea) story completely (but) my opinion is just when I didn’t behave well I have an explanation with the referee at the end of the game or another day, rather than going public with little proof. I’m not in favour of making these things public.’

Scroll down for video

In the spotlight: Chelsea have received widespread criticism for their treatment of Clattenburg

In the spotlight: Chelsea have received widespread criticism for their treatment of Clattenburg

Wenger, whose Arsenal side face United at Old Trafford on Saturday, admitted he has behaved inappropriately during high-profile matches but insisted disagreements should be resolved immediately after the game or at least kept behind closed doors.

Asked whether he had encountered such incidents with referees, the Arsenal boss said: ‘Yes. I must say, honestly, my complete deep feeling in that is that I, myself, was not always completely behaving very well in this situation because it’s always very heated but I am a deep supporter of doing that internally.

Straight talking: Wenger did not hold back

Straight talking: Wenger did not hold back

‘I think, for example, the last two nights (in the Capital One Cup) were great adverts of football and that’s absolutely fantastic.

‘We saw some quality games during the two nights. Maybe because the two teams do not want to play extra time and they do not want to go to penalties. The games were very specific.’

Speaking out: West Ham boss Sam Allardyce

Speaking out: West Ham boss Sam Allardyce

Meanwhile, Sam Allardyce has questioned the need for police to be involved in the Clattenburg case, claiming it is 'sad for football'.

The West Ham manager said he had never heard a referee abuse a player during his career and believes the alleged incident at Stamford Bridge is 'very strange'.

Allardyce said: 'It's very difficult for me to comment because you don't know the extent of what's supposed to have been said. That's critical for me.

'The situation is very difficult for everyone to sort out and when you get the police involved as well it really worries me about where we are going in the game.

'I think if every incident is going to be ending up in police hands it's going to be very sad for the game of football I general.

'Over the last however many years as a manager I've never heard one referee give a bad comment to a player. I find it a very strange thing that has been reported. Only the authorities can decide whether it has or hasn't happened.'

Allardyce conceded he traded strong words with referees when he was a player but added: 'That was never a problem in our day. There would always be industrial language between the pair of us. The whole game was different then.'

VIDEO: Wenger urges restraint over Chelsea referee comment

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Harry Redknapp wants Blackburn job – EXCLUSIVE

EXCLUSIVE: Redknapp's Rovers return! Harry in shock bid for vacant Blackburn job

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UPDATED:

08:43 GMT, 25 October 2012

Harry Redknapp has emerged as a shock contender to take over as Blackburn Rovers manager.

Sportsmail understands that the former Tottenham boss will throw his hat into the ring after he was persuaded to drop down into the Championship by Blackburn’s global advisor Shebby Singh.

Singh initially targeted young up-and-coming coaches who had played for Blackburn like Tim Sherwood and Billy McKinlay, but an outcry from supporters has convinced him to look at a more experienced option in Redknapp.

Rovers return: Harry Redknapp is ready to throw his hat in the ring for the vacant Blackburn job

Rovers return: Harry Redknapp is ready to throw his hat in the ring for the vacant Blackburn job

The 65-year-old has been working in an advisory role at his old club Bournemouth since he left Spurs in June, but sources close to Redknapp have confirmed that he would be very interested in succeeding Steve Kean and has no qualms about moving to Lancashire from his home on the South Coast.

Preliminary discussions have already taken place with his representatives and he is expected to have a formal interview at Ewood Park before the weekend.

Singh said: 'We understand that many fans are feeling frustrated. But we said from the outset that we would not be rushed into an appointment, this is too big a decision for that.'

Former West Ham boss Redknapp would represent a major coup for Singh as he strives to appease those fans and restore the club to the glory days they enjoyed under Jack Walker’s ownership.

Back of the net: Grant Hanley scores against Sheffield Wednesday

Winning ways: Grant Hanley (celebrating, below) scored in Blackburn's 1-0 win over Sheffield Wednesday at Ewood Park on Wednesday night to put Rovers within five points of Championship leaders Leicester

Happy days: Grant Hanley celebrates his goal at Ewood Park

Blackpool manager Ian Holloway and Molde’s Ole Gunnar Solskjaer remain in contention, although former Bolton boss Owen Coyle is believed to have shown little interest when he was approached earlier this week.

Despite Singh’s change of direction, Chorley manager and former Blackburn midfielder Garry Flitcroft is also being considered.

Flitcroft was in the stands at Ewood to see caretaker boss Eric Black celebrate his first win in five games since Kean’s departure.

No go: Billy McKinlay

Contender: Tim Sherwood

Outcry: Blackburn fans were not in favour of initial targets in Billy McKInlay and Tim Sherwood (R)

Black had urged owners Venky’s to install the new man as soon as possible after overseeing a disappointing run of three draws and a defeat, but at least he had something to smile about as an early goal from Grant Hanley lifted Blackburn up six places to fifth.

The Scot is expected to stay in charge for Saturday's home game against Watford and hopes the win will calm his side’s nerves.

'My only target now is Watford,' said Black.

'We have to resolve this feeling of anxiety which invites pressure, but hopefully this will make a big difference.'

Meanwhile, Blackburn are close to signing Cameron Jerome on a short-term loan deal after the striker became surplus to requirements at Stoke

Same again: Blackburn caretaker manager Eric Black is expected to remain in charge for this weekend's match against Watford

Same again: Blackburn caretaker manager Eric Black is expected to remain in charge for this weekend's match against Watford