Tag Archives: future

Coventry City deducted 10 points

Sky Blues falling down! Crisis club Coventry deducted 10 points by Football League

By
Paul Collins

PUBLISHED:

15:54 GMT, 28 March 2013

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UPDATED:

15:54 GMT, 28 March 2013

Coventry City have been deducted 10 points after entering administration.

The deduction leaves the Sky Blues in 15th place in League One.

A statement from the Football League read: 'The Football League can confirm that Coventry City Football Club have been deducted 10 points, in accordance with its rules and regulations.

Tough task: Steven Pressley (left) recently took over as Coventry manager

Tough task: Steven Pressley (left) recently took over as Coventry manager

'This Sporting Sanction has been implemented with immediate effect. Coventry City have seven days in which to appeal.

'The League has now begun discussions with the administrator aimed at achieving a sustainable future for the club within The Football League.'

Coventry had earlier reached a short-term agreement to play their three remaining home games this season at the Ricoh Arena.

Amid an ongoing row between the Sky Blues and Arena Coventry Limited (ACL), who manage the stadium and claim to be owed over 1.3million in unpaid rent stretching back 12 months, the npower League One outfit last week placed a non-operating subsidiary of the club into administration.

That subsidiary, Coventry City Football Club Limited, held the lease and licence for the Ricoh Arena, covering permission to play home matches at the stadium as well as the rental of the club shop and offices, which have already been emptied, with all staff having moved to their Ryton training ground.

Up against it: The Sky Blues have been deducted 10 points

Up against it: The Sky Blues have been deducted 10 points

It sparked speculation and uncertainty over where City would play their remaining home fixtures this term, starting with tomorrow’s visit of league leaders Doncaster.

But a statement released this morning read: “Coventry City Football Club Holdings Ltd are pleased that an agreement has been reached with ACL and the administrator that enables us to play our last three remaining home matches at the Ricoh Arena.

'We apologise profusely to our fans about the confusion surrounding these fixtures and are delighted that this has now been resolved.

'We can now look forward to playing current league leaders Doncaster on Friday 29th March in the hope of doing the double over them.

'Moving forward we hope that we can continue a constructive dialogue with ACL with the aim of securing a sustainable future for the club at the Ricoh Arena.'

The final line of Coventry's statement suggests the club's long-term future may still lie at the venue, which is jointly owned by the Alan Edward Higgs Charity and Coventry City Council.

The lengthy row centres around Coventry's refusal to pay an annual rental fee of 1.28m, the highest in both League One and the Championship by some considerable distance, while also bemoaning the fact they do not get access to 100 per cent of matchday revenue.

After negotiations collapsed, Coventry and hedge fund owners Sisu found themselves in the High Court in London last Friday battling against an application for administration submitted by ACL.

That initial hearing was adjourned, just hours after City placed their non-operating subsidiary into administration – although insisting it is business as usual as Coventry City Football Club (Holdings), which they claim holds the crucial 'golden shares' which provide membership to the Football League and FA, operates as normal.

ACL on Tuesday returned to the High Court and asked for their own application for an administration order to be dismissed.

They claim to have it on good authority from the Football League and the Football Association that Coventry's 'golden shares' do in fact still lie with Coventry City Football Club Ltd, which has already gone into administration, hence the withdrawal of their application.

All eyes are now on the Football League, who are yet to make an official verdict on the matter, with Coventry appearing to face the prospect of a 10-point deduction.

The Sky Blues are currently 10th in League One, five points off the play-offs, with a 10-point penalty certain to end their promotion hopes for this term.

Jack Rodwell: I was surprised Manchester City bid for me

I was surprised City signed me, admits Rodwell as he reveals injury hell

through injury, but the youngster’s concerns were not limited
to his hamstrings after City made their move last summer.

Familiar face: Rodwell contests with future team-mate David Silva last season

Familiar face: Rodwell contests with future team-mate David Silva last season

Manager Roberto Mancini warned that
he had to improve while England boss Roy Hodgson expressed a fear that
he would spend much of the season on the bench at his new club. It did
not help when Rodwell’s misplaced passes led to City conceding goals
against Southampton and Borussia Dortmund in his first few games.

Asked if he was surprised at the
transfer, he said: ‘I was a little bit, yes, because of the injuries –
it was a good surprise though.

‘I’d seen the German doctor
Muller-Wohlfahrt a couple of months before City came in so I felt I was
fit at the time but I obviously wasn’t. I probably didn’t do enough work
after getting treated by him which I know now.

‘I don’t really think about the price
tag or anything like that. When you’re on the pitch you can’t think
about what the fans are thinking. It’s natural when you’ve spent that
much money and you’ve won the league last year, you do expect a little
bit of something in return.

‘I feel as though the fans saw a little bit more of me (against Chelsea) but there’s still a lot more to come in my opinion.’

SAM TOMKINS: This is the biggest year in our sporting history and I can"t wait to give the Aussies a beating

This is the biggest year in our sport's history and I can't wait to give the arrogant Aussies a World Cup beating

.

Well
even though Leeds just came up short losing 14-18, Kevin still gets my
vote. When you see him train he’s utterly ruthless, he’s one of this
country’s finest sporting leaders and is so important to Leeds and
England.

Cameron Smith of Melbourne Storm poses with the trophy

Kevin Sinfield of Leeds Rhinos

Winners: Cameron Smith (left) may have held the World Club Challenge trophy aloft last Friday but Kevin Sinfield (right) gets Sam's vote as deserved player of the year

Away from rugby league and I was immensely proud to see my brother Joel selected for a Six Nations squad last week, although he didn’t make the match-day squad against France.

Joel and I are really close and when
he moved down to London I found it quite hard. We used to train together
every day and even though he’s only two hours away on the train it was
weird not seeing him.

I’m
delighted that he’s taken to life down south so quickly and hopefully in
the not too distant future will get a place in the full England team.
I’ll definitely be down there cheering him on should he
make it.

Pride of a Lion: Sam's brother Joel (left) was called into the England rugby union squad for the Six Nations game against France

Pride of a Lion: Sam's brother Joel (left) was called into the England rugby union squad for the Six Nations game against France

Also, I was shocked to read about the awful racist abuse Mario Balotelli got in football's Milan derby at the weekend.

There is absolutely no place for racism in any sport and the worst part is generally its a minority that spoil it and damage the reputation of a club.

Shocking: Balotelli (foreground) was racially taunted by Inter Milan fans at the wekeend

Shocking: Balotelli (foreground) was racially taunted by Inter Milan fans at the wekeend

Zlatan Ibrahimovic compares himself to Muhammed Ali the greatest

Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee, his name's Ibrahimovic and he scores for PSG… Zlatan likens himself to legend Ali

By
Charlie Skillen

PUBLISHED:

10:08 GMT, 20 February 2013

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UPDATED:

11:11 GMT, 20 February 2013

Zlatan Ibrahimovic has compared himself to boxing legend Muhammed Ali as ‘the greatest’ – but the Paris-Saint Germain striker admits he is behind the former world champion in the pecking order.

The Sweden striker, who has linked up with David Beckham after the Englishman’s move from LA Galaxy to PSG, has been in blistering form this season with 21 goals in 22 Ligue 1 starts.

Never known for his modesty, Ibrahimovic used his form to joke about his position in the sporting Hall of fame, which he says is one behind Ali – seen by many as greatest sportsman of all time.

The Greatest Ibrahimovic (above) holds his arms aloft just like former heavyweight champion Ali (below)

The Greatest Ibrahimovic (above) holds his arms aloft just like former heavyweight champion Ali (below)

Ali, 1972

‘I am the greatest!’ he said to 11Freunde.

‘Wait, is that even possible All right, then I’m the greatest behind Ali!’

Ibrahimovic also hinted a fiery reunion with former boss Pep Guardiola could be on the cards, saying he would be open to a move to Bayern Munich.

Guardiola is joining the Bundesliga leaders at in the summer and signed Ibrahimovic for Barcelona in 2009, but the striker left after just one season amid rumours of a bust-up with the Catalan coach.

Future team-mates Ibrahimovic hinted he would be open to a move to Bayern Munich, celebrating Thomas Muller's (centre) goal against Arsenal last night, with former boss Pep Guardiola taking over in the summer

Future team-mates Ibrahimovic hinted he would be open to a move to Bayern Munich, celebrating Thomas Muller's (centre) goal against Arsenal last night, with former boss Pep Guardiola taking over in the summer

Reunion: But Ibrahimovic (right) and Guardiola (left) fell out during the striker's time at Barcelona

Reunion: But Ibrahimovic (right) and Guardiola (left) fell out during the striker's time at Barcelona

However, Ibrahimovic said the idea of playing for the Bavarian giants, who lead Arsenal 3-1 in their Champions League last-16 tie, is one that interests him.

‘The Bundesliga is certainly a league that attracts me. One day, maybe I will go there, I still have a little time left in my career,’ he said.

‘If I chose to go to Germany, it would have to be Bayern Munich.

‘For me they are one of the top five clubs in the world.’

AJAX Vs RODA JC KERKRADE... Ajax's Swedish forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic scores his team's winner against Roda JC Kerkrade.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic...Juventus' Zlatan Ibrahimovic of Sweden

Football: Euro 2004 Quarter-final: Sweden 0 Holland 0

Well-travelled: Ibrahimovic has also played in Holland (left), Italy (centre) and his native Sweden (right)

Any move to Germany would represent
the sixth country the striker has plied his trade in, which Ibrahimovic
believes has made him a better person.

He
said: ‘I’ve lived in five countries – Sweden, Netherlands, Italy, Spain
and now France. I have learned to get to know new people and cultures.

‘It has certainly made me more mature.’

Swansea to bid 7m for Thomas Ince

Swansea set to spark 7m bidding war with Liverpool for Blackpool star Ince

By
Paul Collins

PUBLISHED:

09:45 GMT, 12 January 2013

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UPDATED:

09:46 GMT, 12 January 2013

Swansea are reportedly ready to hijack Liverpool's bid for Thomas Ince with a 7million offer for the Blackpool midfielder.

Ince, 20, had been expected to complete a move back to Anfield when the transfer window opened but Brendan Rodgers has been frustrated in his atttempts to complete the deal.

Blackpool rejected an opening offer of 5m and Liverpool are yet to return with an improved bid.

Wanted: Thomas Ince has attracted interest from Liverpool and Swansea

Wanted: Thomas Ince has attracted interest from Liverpool and Swansea

And that could leave the door open for Swansea to swoop, according to The Times.

Ince was originally released by Liverpool just 18 months ago and joined Blackpool for 250,000.

He has impressed at Bloomfield Road, scoring 13 goals this season and recently insisted he is happy to remain with the Championship club.

In the market: Ince has long been a target for Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers

In the market: Ince has long been a target for Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers

'My future right now is here,' he said. 'I’m a Blackpool player, I’m contracted to Blackpool and I’ll continue to give 100 per cent for this team.

'I don’t only do it for myself and for the fans but I do it for my team-mates.

'These lads are a great bunch of lads. The team spirit in this team is fantastic.'

Billy Vunipola set to sign new Wasps deal

EXCLUSIVE: Forward thinking to keep Billy at Wasps until 2015

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UPDATED:

22:29 GMT, 31 December 2012

Wasps are on the verge of retaining one of the brightest emerging talents in English rugby, Billy Vunipola.

The marauding Anglo-Tongan No 8 has been in sensational form for the revitalised Wasps this season but his contract expires in June, drawing intense speculation about his future plans.

Vunipola has been linked with Saracens, where older brother Mako — who made his England debut against Fiji at the start of the recent autumn series — plays.

On the run: Billy Vunipola looks set to sign a new deal at Wasps

On the run: Billy Vunipola looks set to sign a new deal at Wasps

Leicester have also reportedly expressed an interest in the 20-year-old ball-carrier, who was born in Sydney but has represented England at Under 18 and Under 20 level.

He grew up in Wales then Bristol, before attending Harrow school, and signed for Wasps in the hope of emulating club icon Lawrence Dallaglio.

This has been his breakthrough season, with 13 starts and 15 appearances as a 20st force of nature at the base of the scrum.

Going nowhere: Vunipola has been in impressive form for Wasps this season

Going nowhere: Vunipola has been in impressive form for Wasps this season

Dai Young, Wasps’ director of rugby, has repeatedly expressed his determination to keep hold of a player he feels is destined for senior England recognition in the near future.

Now it appears his wishes have been answered as Sportsmail understands Vunipola has reached agreement with the club about staying and is set to sign a new deal this week.

It would be a major coup for Wasps, and the development follows the decision in November by England lock sensation Joe Launchbury to commit to the club until June 2015. Young is developing a top squad on a core of great young, homegrown talent.

Arsenal warned by Emirates, win or we"ll cut sponsorship

Win or we'll cut sponsorship, Arsenal warned by main backers Emirates

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UPDATED:

22:28 GMT, 22 December 2012

Arsenal will lose some of their
30million a year sponsorship from main backers Emirates if the club
fail to qualify for the Champions League in the future.

Manager Arsene Wenger has led the club into Europe's lucrative club competition every season he has been in charge.

Under pressure: Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger

Under pressure: Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger

But Arsenal are suffering their worst ever campaign under the Frenchman, are in danger of missing out on a trophy for the eighth straight year – and may yet struggle to qualify for Champions League football next year.

Now the club's big backers, who have negotiated an extension on their contract to cover the five seasons from 2014-15, have disclosed they are taking precautions in case the club's Champions League revenue and exposure suddenly dry up.

Emirates senior vice-president Boutros Boutros confirmed that the Dubai-based airline, which puts its name to both the stadium and Arsenal's shirts, are planning to impose results-based precautions as part of any new deal.

'There are certain clauses, from 2015, that we pay them a percentage less if they don't perform,' said Boutros.

'The Champions League is part of the new contract. It's just to keep them on their toes.

'It's fair to us and fair to them.'

Boutros insisted that Arsenal remained 'an incredibly strong brand, well managed, with a great coach'.

Arsene Wenger"s got the balance right! Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain sees a bright future at Arsenal

Wenger's got the balance right! Oxlade-Chamberlain sees a bright future at Arsenal

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UPDATED:

15:50 GMT, 22 December 2012

Arsenal forward Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain believes the future is bright for the Gunners after their 1-0 win over Wigan at a rain-lashed DW Stadium in the Barclays Premier League.

Mikel Arteta scored the only goal from the penalty spot in the second half and Oxlade-Chamberlain, one of five players to sign new deals at Arsenal this week, believes manager Arsene Wenger has got the mix right.

On the attack: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain skips past Jean Beausejour

On the attack: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain skips past Jean Beausejour

'The players that we've got here now, there's some really exciting young players,' Oxlade-Chamberlain told Sky Sports 3 after being named man of the match.

'I think it's a good mix of youth and experience. The future does look bright for us.'

Oxlade-Chamberlain praised Wigan for their attacking approach despite being in the bottom three.

He said: 'They set up with a lot of men in midfield. In the first half it was hard to get to grips with their midfield at times.'

Winning strike: Mikel Arteta's penalty sealed the points for Arsenal

Winning strike: Mikel Arteta's penalty sealed the points for Arsenal

Arteta thought there were encouraging signs for Wigan despite the loss.

'I think they have been unlucky with the result because the way they play is quite “offensive”,' he said.

The Spaniard was also happy to be able to celebrate three wins in a row for Arsenal for the first time this season.

'It's a big win for us, that's three in a row now,' said the former Everton man. 'I am really happy with the points. It's been a tough game, the conditions were really difficult.'

Under pressure: Theo Walcott battles with James McCarthy

Under pressure: Theo Walcott battles with James McCarthy

Wesley Sneijder leaving Inter in January – says wife

Red alert! Sneijder's wife says Man United target is leaving Inter in January

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UPDATED:

20:01 GMT, 21 December 2012

The wife of Inter Milan midfielder Wesley Sneijder has told a Dutch newspaper that her husband will leave the San Siro in January.

The Holland international faces an uncertain future at Inter after rejecting a request to take a significant pay cut, with Nerazzurri head coach Andrea Stramaccioni insisting the 28-year-old's three-month absence from his team is solely a tactical decision.

But Sneijder – a long-term Manchester United target – was dismissed from training for Christmas early this week despite Inter having two more games to play before the winter break.

Dutch of class: Sneijder won the 2010 Champions League with Inter

Dutch of class: Sneijder won the 2010 Champions League with Inter

Actress and television personality Yolanthe Sneijder-Cabau told De Telegraaf on Friday: 'We are about to emigrate.

'It should happen in early January and we are looking for a nice place for our family.'

Sneijder,
who won the treble with Inter under Jose Mourinho in 2010, has also
attracted the interest of ambitious French side Paris St Germain and
United's main rivals Manchester City.

Out of favour: The ex-Real Madrid and Ajax man refused to take a pay cut

Out of favour: The ex-Real Madrid and Ajax man refused to take a pay cut

Sneijder-Cabau later backtracked on her comments, taking to Twitter to claim she had been misquoted.

Through her official account, she tweeted: 'So many questions about our situation..

'Sweet people, as far as I know we are not leaving Milano! Some 'media' will always make up stories.'

Raheem Sterling signs new Liverpool contract

Sterling ends speculation by signing new long-term contract with Liverpool

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UPDATED:

14:53 GMT, 21 December 2012

England whizzkid Raheem Sterling has signed a new long-term contract with Liverpool.

The 18-year-old winger has been in negotiations with the Anfield club for weeks over a new deal.

But, as revealed by Sportsmail this week, both parties have shaken hands on a deal for Sterling to stay with the Merseysiders for the foreseeable future.

Signed, sealed, delivered: Raheem Sterling agreeing his new contract with Brendan Rodgers

Signed, sealed, delivered: Raheem Sterling agreeing his new contract with Brendan Rodgers

'It's every 18-year-old's dream. I'm just really grateful to be at such a big club like this,' Sterling said.

'There's a lot more to be done. I haven't begun yet, as the manager has said. Hopefully I can kick on after the New Year and try to do my best for the team and the football club.'

Manager Brendan Rodgers believes Liverpool provide the ideal environment in which Sterling can flourish.

There was a slight hold up to the deal being finalised as negotiations had to be thrashed out over the scale of his pay rise – from a reported 2,000-a-week to nearer 40,000.

But Rodgers insisted extended discussions were also about football as well as financial decisions.

Shake on it: Sterling with Liverpool boss Rodgers

Shake on it: Sterling with Liverpool boss Rodgers

'It was just making sure that we take
care in terms of the financial – but also the football – plan for the
player,' said the Reds boss.

'This was about a young player who
has rocketed from playing in the youth teams and the reserves into
becoming a full England international.

'A lot has happened in his young life and it was just about making sure that there was that protection for him going forward – both in his financial situation and his football plan.

'I have always been confident that this was going to be the best place for him and thankfully the kid is very focused and devoted to Liverpool.'

Jamaican-born Sterling had just 18 months left to run on his existing contract and ensuring the teenage sensation penned an extension was a top priority for the club.

And after several meetings between managing director Ian Ayre and Sterling's representatives the England international can now concentrate on establishing himself as a key member of Brendan Rodgers' plans.

A number of the Premier League's elite were lining up to take advantage of the uncertainty regarding Sterling's future next month.

Both Manchester clubs, Arsenal and Chelsea have watched Sterling extensively with a view to swooping for the forward in January.

Sterling, who started his career at Queens Park Rangers, has made rapid progress for Liverpool since breaking into the first team under Kenny Dalglish last season.

And his impressive breakthrough culminated in his first England cap, as he started in the defeat against Sweden last month.

However, he is still eligible to play for his native Jamaica given he has not played for the Three Lions in a competitive fixture yet.

Ayre said: 'This is another positive step forward for the football club in securing the long-term future of one of the country's brightest young talents.

One to watch: Sterling has come to the fore this season under manager Brendan Rodgers

One to watch: Sterling has come to the fore this season under manager Brendan Rodgers

'The negotiations were very positive and both parties acted in a very responsible way to reach an outcome that benefits both Raheem and Liverpool FC.

'Since the summer, Luis Suarez, Daniel Agger, Martin Skrtel, Jonjo Shelvey and Suso have all signed new long-term contracts and it's a clear indication of our intent to keep the players we believe are crucial to bringing success on the pitch.

'It also shows the belief the players have in the vision and leadership of Brendan Rodgers and everyone at this football club.'