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Arsenal fans can"t expect to win trophies, says Fulham boss Martin Jol

Arsenal fans can't expect to win trophies! Jol warning as he seeks to pile pressure on Wenger

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UPDATED:

17:57 GMT, 8 November 2012

Martin Jol has told Arsenal fans it
was no longer realistic for them to expect a regular diet of trophies as
he looked to add to their 'frustration' ahead of Fulham's trip to the
Emirates Stadium.

Cottagers boss Jol, who spent three
years in charge of the Gunners' arch-rivals Tottenham, suggested Arsene
Wenger's men were not competing on a level playing field with Manchester
United, Manchester City and Chelsea.

Under pressure: Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger

Under pressure: Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger

The Dutchman admitted seven years without silverware was 'a long time' for a club of Arsenal's stature but insisted their supporters would miss Wenger when he finally left the manager's hotseat.

The longer the Gunners' trophy drought has continued, the more the pressure on Wenger and the board from the fans has intensified, and Jol said: 'If you look at the likes of Man City with almost half a billion spent, Man United, it's not easy nowadays.

'Can you expect a team like Arsenal to win things, with Chelsea, Man City, Man United, all these clubs'

Asked if supporter anger was justified, Jol said: 'I don't think you have to be angry. Frustrated is probably the better word.

'Angry with Wenger Wenger created the new Arsenal, almost.

'Maybe in three years' time, they will hope and pray to get someone like Wenger.'

Admiration: Fulham manager Martin Jol

Admiration: Fulham manager Martin Jol

Jol famously clashed with the Frenchman while in charge at White Hart Lane and added: 'I'm not an Arsenal fan – as you well know – but I always admired Wenger for what he did.

'There is not one other team in the top four doing the same thing with the same philosophy.

'They always manage to find the players who are younger and create value on the pitch.

'Of course, it's probably not what an Arsenal fan wants.

'Seven years That's a long time'

Wenger was criticised in some quarters for suggesting 15 successive seasons inside the Barclays Premier League top four was the equivalent of a trophy.

Jol said: 'He's one of the few managers who will never be under pressure because people realise what he has done, not only in the past but last year.'

Arsenal recovered last season from their worst start in 58 years to finish third.

They are only seventh this season after 10 matches, nine points off top spot and level with Jol's Fulham, who they host on Saturday.

'I would always put my money on Arsenal to be in the top four,' Jol added, who admitted the loss of Robin van Persie was a big blow to them.

'Of course, they miss him, but we miss a few people and we get other people in.'

Jol insisted it was 'ridiculous' to suggest Fulham had any chance of finishing above the Gunners this season, although he did not rule out leapfrogging them this weekend.

The Cottagers have never won at Arsenal but went as close as ever last season, leading 1-0 at the Emirates with eight minutes remaining.

'If we have a good day with our team, I think we could cause them a problem,' said Jol, whose side have taken five points off the Gunners in their last three meetings.

'We did that last year. They scored in the 85th minute or so.

'At home, we scored the winner with Bobby Zamora in the last couple of minutes, so hopefully we can do the same.'

Jol was sweating on the fitness of midfielder Mahamadou Diarra, who he rated '50-50' with a knee injury.

Kieran Richardson should return to Fulham's squad, with Simon Davies the only long-term absentee.

NFL want to beat West Ham to Olympic Stadium Americans

It was the home of Britain's greatest sporting triumphs, now the Mayor is in talks for the Olympic Stadium to be the new London home of America's NFL

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UPDATED:

19:29 GMT, 31 October 2012

The Olympic stadium in Stratford could become the London home of the NFL after talks involving Mayor Boris Johnson.

The ambitious plan is for NFL franchises to become the 'anchor tenant'. It would leave West Ham scuppered in their attempt to turn the East End venue in their new home.

'Sunday’s
game at Wembley, in front of more than 80,000 fans, further cements
London’s reputation as the natural home of American football outside of
the US,' the mayor's spokesman said.

Mayor Boris Johnson is heckled by protestors as he visits Bristol yesterday. West Ham fans may feel the same way about him.

Mayor Boris Johnson is heckled by protestors as he visits Bristol yesterday. West Ham fans may feel the same way about him.

West Ham's bid to take on the tenancy has hit a stumbling block and Johnson – the chairman of the London Legacy Development Corporation who operate the stadium – opened talks last weekend when four NFL teams were in London playing regular-season games at Wembley.

A spokesman for Johnson added: 'Given the ever-growing popularity of gridiron this side of the Atlantic the mayor and his team have held a number of meetings with senior executives in the last few days to explore further opportunities for NFL in London.

Up in the air: The future of the Olympic Stadium remains unclear

Up in the air: The future of the Olympic Stadium remains unclear

'The talks were exploratory and we are at an early stage but the signs are encouraging.'

West Ham are also looking to take over the anchor tenancy but the Treasury’s refusal to hand over the 337 million Olympic-contingency underspend to help install retractable seating is hampering their bid.

The retractable seating is expected to cost in the region of 200 million and the Mayor will be expecting any anchor tenant to make a significant contribution.

It is understood West Ham are willing to offer more than 8million a year in rent and related payments in addition to a reported multi-million lump sum.

The club are understood to be unwilling to reveal the true nature of their financial package due to confidentiality issues.

Touchdown: The NFL arrived in London last weekend

Touchdown: The NFL arrived in London last weekend

West Ham also believe that as several other events will be taking place at the Olympic Stadium throughout the next few years – such as the 2015 Rugby World Cup and the 2017 World Athletics Championships – they should not be the sole party asked to foot the bill.

A decision on the future of the stadium was expected to be announced by the end of October but negotiations are ongoing. Other contenders for the stadium tenancy are Leyton Orient, a football business college and a group wanting to host a Formula One race at the Olympic Park.

The NFL proposition is an attractive one as the stadium would only be required up to 10 times per year – compared to up to 25 times a year for football. This would free up time for other events such.

Boris takes to the microphone with opera singer Katherine Jenkins at Wembley on Sunday

Boris takes to the microphone with opera singer Katherine Jenkins at Wembley on Sunday

Boris meets the officials before kick-off between the New England Patriots and St. Louis Rams in London on Sunday

Boris meets the officials before kick-off between the New England Patriots and St. Louis Rams in London on Sunday

Bringing in other sports such as gridiron to the capital on a more regular basis is something that the Mayor's office are keen on exploring.

'Only last week the mayor, in conjunction with the NFL, announced an expansion from one to two regular-season matches in London from 2013. That means in total an additional 44 million in revenue for the capital from next year,' the Mayor’s spokesman added.

NFL want to beat West Ham to Olympic Stadium

West Ham could be pipped to the Olympic Stadium… by the NFL

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UPDATED:

11:47 GMT, 31 October 2012

NFL franchises have entered the running to become the anchor tenant of the Olympic Stadium after talks with London Mayor Boris Johnson were revealed.

West Ham's bid to take on the tenancy has hit a stumbling block and Johnson – the chairman of the London Legacy Development Corporation who operate the stadium – opened talks last weekend when four NFL teams were in London playing regular-season games at Wembley.

A spokesman for the Mayor told the Daily Telegraph: 'Given the ever-growing popularity of gridiron this side of the Atlantic the mayor and his team have held a number of meetings with senior executives in the last few days to explore further opportunities for NFL in London.

Up in the air: The future of the Olympic Stadium remains unclear

Up in the air: The future of the Olympic Stadium remains unclear

'The talks were exploratory and we are at an early stage but the signs are encouraging.'

West Ham are also looking to take over the anchor tenancy but the Treasury’s refusal to hand over the 337 million Olympic-contingency underspend to help install retractable seating is hampering their bid.

The retractable seating is expected to cost in the region of 200 million and the Mayor will be expecting any anchor tenant to make a significant contribution.

Despite remaining favourites to take
over the tenancy of the stadium, West Ham are thought to be unwilling to
cough up funds to help convert it into a football-friendly environment,
believing that it should be the responsibility of the landlords and not
the tenants.

Touchdown: The NFL arrived in London last weekend

Touchdown: The NFL arrived in London last weekend

West Ham also believe that as several other events will be taking place at the Olympic Stadium throughout the next few years – such as the 2015 Rugby World Cup and the 2017 World Athletics Championships – they should not be the sole party asked to foot the bill.

A decision on the future of the stadium was expected to be announced by the end of October but negotiations are ongoing. Other contenders for the stadium tenancy are Leyton Orient, a football business college and a group wanting to host a Formula One race at the Olympic Park.

The NFL proposition is an attractive one as the stadium would only be required up to 10 times per year – compared to up to 25 times a year for football. This would free up time for other events such.

In talks: The Mayor's office are keen to keep bringing the sport back to the capital

In talks: The Mayor's office are keen to keep bringing the sport back to the capital

Bringing in other sports such as gridiron to the capital on a more regular basis is something that the Mayor's office are keen on exploring.

'Sunday’s game at Wembley, in front of more than 80,000 fans, further cements London’s reputation as the natural home of American football outside of the US,' the Mayor’s spokesman added.

'Only last week the mayor, in conjunction with the NFL, announced an expansion from one to two regular-season matches in London from 2013. That means in total an additional 44 million in revenue for the capital from next year.'

NBA London games cancelled

NBA London games cancelled as New Jersey v Orlando falls victim to labour dispute

The planned NBA games in London ahead of next summer”s Olympics have been cancelled.

The New Jersey Nets and Orlando Magic had been due to play regular-season games at the O2 Arena as part of an effort to promote basketball in the lead up to the Olympics.

No return: New Jersey Nets played the Toronto Raptors at London

No return: New Jersey Nets played the Toronto Raptors at London”s O2 Arena earlier this year but they will not be back before next summer”s Olympics

But the fixtures have fallen victim to the labour dispute that led to much of the NBA season being cancelled.

A shortened 66-game schedule, starting on Christmas Day, was released by the league on Tuesday night, and there was no room for the London dates, which had been scheduled for March 7 and 8.

It is still planned for the NBA to return to the UK for pre-season games in 2012 and 2013.