Tag Archives: shaun

Torquay appoint Alan Knill as interim manager

Torquay task Knill with stopping the rot after appointing ex-Bury boss until end of season

By
Pete Evans, Press Association

PUBLISHED:

12:08 GMT, 20 February 2013

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UPDATED:

12:08 GMT, 20 February 2013

Torquay have appointed Alan Knill as their interim manager until the end of the season.

The former Rotherham, Bury and Scunthorpe boss will work with assistant Shaun Taylor, who has been managing the Gulls for the last six games while manager Martin Ling has been absent on sick leave.

Knill faces a tough task at Plainmoor as he inherits a side who have lost their last five matches, the most recent a defeat at Aldershot last night.

New man: Alan Knill (right) watched Torquay lose to Aldershot

New man: Alan Knill (right) watched Torquay lose to Aldershot

Torquay stand just five points clear of the npower League Two relegation zone ahead of the visit of Port Vale on Saturday.

'Alan was suggested to us by some people in the football industry,' chairman Simon Baker told the club's official website.

'We had drawn up a shortlist and we checked up on Alan with people he had worked with, and they all gave him a glowing reference.

'We met him at Aldershot yesterday and we are delighted he has decided to come in and help us. He comes across as a very agreeable man but there is an edge of steel in him, which is what we need.'

On the slide: Torquay have struggled for form in recent months

On the slide: Torquay have struggled for form in recent months

Ling has been away from the club since the day his side recorded their last victory, a 1-0 win at Exeter on January 28, and Baker revealed the latest update on the former Leyton Orient manager's condition.

'The last I heard from Mrs Ling was that Martin is making progress and we will see how it all pans out,' Baker added.

'We will cross that bridge when it comes but our focus at the moment is between now and April 27, when the season comes to an end.'

Shaun Edwards left out of Lions coaching staff

Edwards agony as Lions call up England coach Farrell for tour of Australia

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UPDATED:

22:30 GMT, 12 December 2012

Once Warren Gatland had confirmed his
Lions coaching line-up on Wednesday, he spoke of his ‘agonising’
decision which left long-term sidekick Shaun Edwards stunned and
shattered.

Of all the
potential candidates, he had to choose between two close friends, two
men from the same town in northern England, two ex-rugby league players
who had competed side by side for club and country so many times.

It all came down to Andy Farrell
versus Shaun Edwards and Gatland chose Farrell over the man who helped
him guide Wasps and Wales to titles and glory.

Lionhearts: (From left to right) Andy Farrell, Warren Gatland, Andy Irvine, Rob Howley and Graham Rowntree

Lionhearts: (From left to right) Andy Farrell, Warren Gatland, Andy Irvine, Rob Howley and Graham Rowntree

Lionhearts: (L-R) assistant coach Andy Farrell, head coach Warren Gatland, tour manager Andy Irvine, assistant coaches Rob Howley and Graham Rowntree

When the management team for the tour
of Australia was unveiled, there was no dissent about the re-appointment
of Graham Rowntree and Rob Howley. As the men in charge of the forwards
and the attacking game, they will pick up where they left off in South
Africa in 2009. The talk was all about Gatland’s deliberation between
the former Wigan stalwarts from the 13-man code.

‘It
was pretty agonising really,’ said Gatland. ‘There was a lot of
speculation — people talking about Shaun. For me, that was the most
difficult decision to have to make. He is a world-class coach who has
been very, very successful. But I felt that, from a selfish point of
view, I wanted someone fresh who I haven’t worked with, who would
challenge me.

Left out: Edwards (above) had been hoping to embark on another Lions tour with Gatland (below left)

Left out: Edwards (above) had been hoping to embark on another Lions tour with Gatland (below left)

Left out: Edwards (above) had been hoping to embark on another Lions tour with Gatland (below left)

‘I told Shaun a few days ago —that’s
when I spoke to him about my final decision. He appreciated the call but
at the same time he was very, very disappointed. It wasn’t the easiest
decision in the world to make. But I have to make those hard calls.’

Howley knows Edwards well through
their work together on behalf of Wales. When asked if the former Wasps
coach would be disappointed by this news, his reaction was revealing.
He thought long and hard, looked intently at the questioner and
replied: ‘Very.’ No more words were needed. The force of that one hung
in the air.

Farrell, 37, is an international
coaching novice with only nine England Tests under his belt, but Gatland
said: ‘Having spoken to coaches and players who’ve worked with Andy,
he comes highly recommended.’

Pointing the way: Gatland has opted to take Farrell to Australia with him

Pointing the way: Gatland has opted to take Farrell to Australia with him

FIXTURES

Click here for all the fixtures for the 2013 tour of Australia

The New Zealander did not reach a
final verdict until after the autumn Tests — which meant Farrell’s input
into England’s win over the All Blacks was a factor.

Gatland
revealed: ‘I am excited by that. He brings something different in terms
of his background, as the youngest captain of Great Britain’s rugby
league team. People who have been involved with him talk about his
ability to motivate players and make them want to play for him.’

For Farrell, inclusion in the Lions
hierarchy maintains a year of scarcely credible personal advance. Back
in January he was busy learning his trade at Saracens, then Stuart
Lancaster asked if he could help out with England’s interim coaching
set-up. He did such a good job that the RFU pursued him and after a
brief hiatus, the union got their man.

Scrum's the word: Rowntree will be responsible for coaching the pack

Scrum's the word: Rowntree will be responsible for coaching the pack

Now he has been given the chance to take the ultimate step.

‘It’s
been a hell of a year, it’s been unbelievable,’ he said. ‘I feel very
fortunate to have an opportunity like this so early in my coaching
career. It’s something I’m very proud of.

‘I
class myself to be a similar type of character and competitor to Shaun
and we’ve both won things. We’re good friends and we’ll speak.’

The coaching team

ANDY FARRELL

Born: May 30, 1975 in Wigan, England.

Tests (as player): 8 (all in 2007).

Position: Centre.

Club(s): Saracens, Wigan RL.

Coaching career: Saracens (from 2009), England (2012-).

Lions background: none.

Other: Made Great Britain rugby league debut at age of 18 and was youngest-ever captain at age of 21. Won five championships and four Challenge Cups in successful Wigan side. Former world Player of the Year in league.

Crossed codes in 2005 but missed a whole season through injury. Part of England (union) squad which reached Rugby World Cup Final 2007.

ROB HOWLEY

Born: October 13, 1970 in Bridgend, Wales.

Tests (as player): 61 (from 1996-2002).

Position: Scrum half.

Club(s): Wasps, Cardiff, Bridgend.

Coaching career: Cardiff Blues, Wales (from 2008).

Lions background: Toured South Africa in 1997, but injury ended his tour early. Toured Australia in 2001, playing in two Tests. Served as attack coach under Sir Ian McGeechan in South Africa in 2009.

Other: Captained Wales 22 times in 1998 and 1999. Welsh Player of the Year in 1996 and 1997. Famously won 2004 Heineken Cup for Wasps with last-gasp try against Toulouse at Twickenham.

GRAHAM ROWNTREE

Born: April 18, 1971 in Stockton-on-Tees, England.

Tests (as player): 57 (from 1995-2006).

Position: Prop.

Club(s): Leicester.

Coaching career: Leicester, RFU national academy, England (from 2008).

Lions background: Toured South Africa in 1997, but unable to break into Test squad. Toured New Zealand in 2005 and played in two Tests. Served as scrum coach under Sir Ian McGeechan in South Africa in 2009.

Other: Part of the 2003 Grand Slam-winning England squad but overlooked for World Cup. Played 398 matches for Leicester from 1990-2007, winning two Heineken Cups and four Premiership titles.

Mark Selby beats Shaun Murphy UK Championship final

Selby celebrates return to top of rankings with UK Championship victory over Murphy

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UPDATED:

01:23 GMT, 10 December 2012

It was a case of better late than never for Mark Selby as he beat Shaun Murphy in the williamhill.com UK Championship final.

The Leicester man landed the biggest ranking event title of his career, tying up a 10-6 victory over his good friend Shaun Murphy at two minutes past midnight at the York Barbican Centre.

It was an appropriate way to mark his return to the world No 1 ranking, and Selby was warmly embraced by Murphy after wrapping up his win.

Done it: Mark Selby celebrates with the trophy after winning the final of the UK Snooker Championships

Done it: Mark Selby celebrates with the trophy after winning the final of the UK Snooker Championships

Selby, 29, had a 14-month spell as snooker's top-ranked player in which he failed to win a major trophy, and consequently he relinquished top spot to Judd Trump last month.

But Trump's first spell as number one was brief, ending when Selby reached the final at York's Barbican Centre. And there could be no better way for Selby to begin his second stint as the sport's leading player than with some long-awaited silverware.

He and Murphy looked to be perfectly matched as they shared the opening 12 frames today.

But just as a very late finish, well into the early hours of the morning, began to loom, Selby seized control and reeled off four straight frames after the interval to take the trophy and a 125,000 winner's cheque.

While Selby has won the Masters title twice, the UK Championship and World Championship titles had proved elusive. Now he has the first of those, the second will be his target in the second half of the season.

From 4-4 at the end of the afternoon action, they progressed to 6-6 by the evening mid-session interval, and in the best-of-19 contest that meant there were a possible seven frames still to play.

Selby needed only four.

It was no surprise the final was closely fought until its closing stages, with both men having needed to rely on battling tendencies to last the distance over the nine-day tournament.

Selby came from 4-0 behind to beat Neil Robertson 6-4 in the quarter-finals, while Murphy produced the tournament's finest fightback to stun Ali Carter in their semi-final, recovering from 8-4 adrift to win 9-8.

No 1: Selby will return to the top of the rankings

No 1: Selby will return to the top of the rankings

Selby had breaks of 54, 66, 70, 58, 51 and 98 in his success, while Murphy had 83, 98 and 65.

This was the first all-English final at the UK Championship since Jimmy White beat John Parrott in 1992. In those days the final was a best-of-31 match.

There was plenty riding on this final, with Murphy seeking his first ranking title for over 18 months and Selby bidding to lift his maiden UK Championship.

Selby now has a third ranking title to his name, still a meagre tally considering his great ability.

Murphy remains on four rankings titles.

Selby's charge began after the mid-session interval, and as Murphy's game began to deteriorate he took full advantage.

Murphy had the chance to pinch the 16th frame but could not hold his game together under intense pressure and Selby made certain of the title by clipping in the blue.

Selby was delighted at last to claim one of the game's two biggest ranking titles.

'I'm over the moon,' he said. 'It means a great deal to me and to beat someone of Shaun's class in a major final it makes it even more special.

Not to be: Shaun Murphy lost out to his close friend

Not to be: Shaun Murphy lost out to his close friend

'It was a strange game tonight. It wasn't pretty. I felt as if it wasn't even my arm half the time, twitching all over the place and flicking them in here and there.'

Murphy felt Selby deserved the victory.

'He's the hardest player on tour by a mile,' said Murphy. 'He's a worthy world No 1, he fully deserves it and he fully deserves tonight.

'This tournament doesn't owe me anything. I should have gone home to Luca [Brecel] in the quarters and I should have gone home to Ali in the semis. I've had a great week and I've had great support.

'I've played some good stuff and I've been beaten by the best in the world so it's not all bad.'

Selby conceded he too could easily have gone out of the tournament before the final.

'I never really give in until the last ball's potted, that's just me all over,' he said. 'If I wasn't like that there's no way I would have got to the final.

'Like Shaun, I should have gone out to Ryan Day, should have gone out to Neil, but here we both are in the final.'

With 125,000 in his bank account just before Christmas, he added: 'We can have a bit more tinsel and a few more baubles, so that's good.'

Shaun Murphy took inspiration from late great pal Paul Hunter in thrilling York comeback

Murphy took inspiration from late great pal Hunter in thrilling York comeback

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UPDATED:

15:48 GMT, 8 December 2012

Shaun Murphy has been inspired by memories of Paul Hunter as he closes in on williamhill.com UK Championship glory.

Hunter was one of his sport's most popular figures but died of cancer in October 2006 at the age of 27.

In York over the past week Murphy has had his old friend on his mind, and he considers the Leeds man to have been the perfect model of a player who knew how to stay cool in the heat of battle.

Most famously, Hunter employed a 'Plan B' during the interval in his first Masters final, as he returned re-energised from spending the break with his girlfriend and future wife Lindsey in their hotel bedroom. Hunter beat Fergal O'Brien 10-9 from 6-2 behind.

Comeback win: Shaun Murphy (left) saw off Ali Carter to reach the UK Championship final

Comeback win: Shaun Murphy (left) saw off Ali Carter to reach the UK Championship final

Murphy's mental strength has shone through at the Barbican Centre where he has won final-frame deciders against Luca Brecel and Ali Carter to clinch a place in the title match. He insisted last night that there had been no 'Plan B' in operation during the Carter match.

The 30-year-old will tomorrow have a shot at the 125,000 top prize and his second UK title, four years after the first.

And when Murphy has had to fight to stay composed, three-time Masters champion Hunter's attitude has come to mind.

'I'm very strong technically and my shot selection has been good over the years, but what I've been able to do recently is hold myself together,' Murphy said.

'And I remember the great Paul Hunter, that was his best strength. Under pressure he was able to chill out and you'd never know with Paul whether he'd won or lost. I've tried to take that on board and use it to the same effect.

'I see the funny side of things rather than banging my cue on the table and in the last few frames against Ali I didn't feel any pressure at all.'

Inspiration: The late Paul Hunter had an astonishing temperament

Inspiration: The late Paul Hunter had an astonishing temperament

From 8-4 behind against Carter, Murphy won five frames in a row to prevail 9-8, and after making a recent bad habit of losing in ranking event semi-finals he is thrilled to be challenging again for one of the most prized trophies in snooker.

He said: 'I think what's happened this week is that all the little pieces of the experience that I've gathered over the last few years have all come together.

'Win, lose or draw on Sunday I've had a really great week. I've gone back to my attacking play, my long potting has been good and I've had a bit of nous here and there which I never used to have.

'I've played quite clever snooker at times. But the biggest thing for me is that I've been able to keep my composure.

'Never at any time has my head gone down. I've not been stomping around and I've not been sulking. I've just got on with it.

'I'm going into the final having already won this tournament, so I feel I probably won't be under much pressure. I've got a free crack at it.'

There was disappointment for Murphy at the beginning of the year when he was beaten in the Masters final by Neil Robertson, and that is a title he has yet to claim.

He will have another chance next month at Alexandra Palace, but for now Murphy's focus is on lifting the UK trophy.

'It'd be nice to have one of the big three,' said the player who is based in Sale, Greater Manchester.

'I had a great chance in January to win the Masters and complete my set of 'BBC' majors, that didn't happen but to have another good run at this tournament and another crack at the trophy is very, very exciting.'

FA Cup round-up: Luton lead the non-league charge while Burton spring surprise

FA Cup round-up: Luton lead the non-league charge ahead of third round draw

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UPDATED:

18:31 GMT, 1 December 2012

Blue Square Premier Luton are the
first non-league side guaranteed a place in the third round draw after
goals from Andre Gray and Alex Lawless gave the Hatters a 2-1 win over
Conference South Dorchester at Kenilworth Road.

Harrogate Town and Hastings Town will join Luton in the hat after playing out a 1-1 draw at Wetherby Road.

Tom Platt's header put Harrogate ahead after 41 minutes before Jamie Crellin equalised for the Ryman Premier visitors.

In the hat: Luton's Alex Lawless celebrates his side's winner

In the hat: Luton's Alex Lawless celebrates his side's winner

Burton Albion claimed the only upset on FA Cup second round day as a fifth minute goal from Calvin Zola proved enough to give the npower League Two outfit a 1-0 away to League One strugglers Crewe.

Fellow League Two side Port Vale had looked set to join them in the headlines with Tom Pope's 33rd minute strike putting Micky Adams' men within sight of a famous win over Sheffield United at Bramall Lane.

But the Blades dealt a double blow to Vale's dreams of an upset with Shaun Miller heading an equaliser in the final minute then going on to net an injury-time winner to give his side a dramatic 2-1 win.

Big moment: Hastings players celebrate

Big moment: Hastings players celebrate

Opening up: Tom Platt scores the opening goal for Harrogate

Opening up: Tom Platt scores the opening goal for Harrogate

And Blue Square Premier pair Lincoln and Mansfield must do it all again in their bid to join the big guns after a 3-3 draw at Sincil Bank.

Matthew Rhead's injury-time equaliser gave the visitors a second chance at reaching round three.

Chelmsford's Cup dream came to an end in a 3-0 defeat at Crawley.

Nicky Adams, Billy Clarke and Graham Alexander scored for the League Two side, while the visitors had Donovan Simmonds sent off in the first half.

Liam Cooper gave League Two Chesterfield a shock lead against League One leaders Tranmere at Prenton Park, but goals from Cole Stockton and Adam McGurk rescued a 2-1 win for Rovers.

League Two leaders Gillingham were not so fortunate, falling 2-0 at League One Preston whose goals came in the first half from Jeffrey Monakana and Stuart Beavon.

Three up: Gary Alexander celebrates his goal for Crawley

Three up: Gary Alexander celebrates his goal for Crawley

Oxford claimed a second chance against Accrington Stanley after a dramatic 3-3 draw with four goals coming in the last 10 minutes.

Lee Molyneux seemed to have won it for Stanley in injury-time, but there was still time for Michael Raynes to hit a leveller.

Gary McSheffrey's 38th minute penalty paved the way for Coventry's 2-1 win over League Two Morecambe at the Ricoh Arena, while a late double from Matt Derbyshire ensured Oldham's progression with a 3-1 win over Doncaster.

Danny Hylton scored twice as struggling Aldershot claimed a surprise 3-2 win at League Two rivals Fleetwood, while Bournemouth's long trip to Carlisle proved worthwhile as Wes Fogden's early goal set up a 3-1 away win.

League Two Rotherham earned a second crack at Notts County after holding the League One side to a 1-1 home draw, while Bury face a midweek replay at Southend after they were deadlocked by the same score at Gigg Lane.

West Ham fined 25,000 for EIGHT bookings at QPR

Hammered for 25k! Upton Park outfit fined by Premier League for EIGHT bookings in victory at QPR

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UPDATED:

07:51 GMT, 2 October 2012

West Ham will have to pay 25,000 after EIGHT of their players were booked in the 2-1 win over QPR at Loftus Road on Monday night.

The flurry of yellow cards triggers the fine from the Premier League with the Hammers becoming the first team in the competition to have eight different players cautioned in one match.

Mark Clattenburg was the busy man in the
middle as the referee also booked Adel Taarabt and sent off Samba
Diakite for the hosts.

Matt Jarvis and Ricardo Vaz Te were on target for the visitors with Taarabt replying for Mark Hughes' side.

Ref justice: Kevin Nolan was booked for complaining to Mark Clattenburg

Ref justice: Kevin Nolan was booked for complaining to Mark Clattenburg

'He hasn't spoilt our result but if you look at the spectacle as a game I think there were an awful lot of fouls and decisions he gave that he didn't need to do,' West Ham boss Sam Allardyce said of official Clattenburg.

'An awful lot of yellow cards he gave nearly spoilt the game and I suppose Mark [Hughes] will be disappointed.

'I know we got fined for seven bookings and he has given 20 fouls against us today in a non-physical contest.

'That is really, from my point of view, disappointing but it hasn't affected our performance or result, but what it did was frustrate everybody.'

HAMMERS HIT WITH YELLOW CARDS – IN ORDER

1 – Mohamed Diame was the first name in the book for a foul on Shaun Wright-Phillips shortly before half-time.

2 – Mark Noble picked up a yellow for a foul on Park Ji-Sung in injury-time at the end of the first half.

First up: Mohamed Diame fouled Shaun Wright-Phillips and picked up a booking

First up: Mohamed Diame fouled Shaun Wright-Phillips and picked up a booking

3 – George McCartney was next – after 63 minutes – for a foul on Diakite.

4 – Goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen had his name taken for time wasting – with about 25 minutes still left on the clock.

5 – Striker Carlton Cole complained as he was booked after a foul on Clint Hill….

Looking worried: The card count will have caused concern for West Ham manager Sam Allardyce

Looking worried: The card count will have caused concern for West Ham manager Sam Allardyce

6 – and skipper Kevin Nolan was also punished for having a moan at Clattenburg.

7 – James Collins caught the yellow fever when he booted the ball away in frustration as a decision went against the Hammers late on.

8 – James Tomkins tried to waste a bit of time as the clock ran down but he took too long over a free-kick on the halfway line and rounded up the card count for the night.

Marching orders: Samba Diakite (No 2) is sent for an early bath by referee Clattenburg at Loftus Road

Marching orders: Samba Diakite (No 2) is sent for an early bath by referee Clattenburg at Loftus Road

Spanish Open: Gregory Bourdy leads in Seville

Bourdy leads the way in Seville after sudden burst… but Jimenez breaks 80

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UPDATED:

22:01 GMT, 4 May 2012

Four birdies in the last six holes swept France's Gregory Bourdy into the lead on the second day of the Reale Seguros Spanish Open in Seville.

Only joint 37th after an opening 73, Bourdy burst to five under par with a brilliant six-under 66 and took over the lead from American Shaun Micheel, who crashed to a 77.

Leader: Gregory Bourdy enjoyed a good day at the Spanish Open

Leader: Gregory Bourdy enjoyed a good day at the Spanish Open

The former US PGA champion fell all
the way to 19th, leaving Bourdy one shot in front of English duo Simon
Dyson and Robert Rock, 19-year-old Italian Matteo Manassero and Spain's
Challenge Tour graduate Jorge Campillo.

Dyson closed with a 12-foot eagle putt on the long ninth and was delighted with his new belly putter.

'I've been struggling with my holing
out and just lost a bit of confidence. I'm finding it harder to get the
pace now, but I seem to be starting it on line a lot more
consistently.'

Big hit: England's Robert Rock plays a shot

Big hit: England's Robert Rock plays a shot

He shot 69, while Abu Dhabi winner Rock – another hoping for a Ryder Cup debut this year – followed up his 68 with a 71.

Manassero boosted his hopes of making the US Open by moving into contention with a 70.

The teenager, ranked 64th in the
world, needs to be inside the top 60 by May 21 to secure a place on the
first tee at the Olympic Club in San Francisco from June 14.

View: Jorge Campillo on his home turf

View: Jorge Campillo on his home turf

'Lately I seem to be always trying
to get myself into a major,' he said. 'I just missed out on the Masters
but the good thing is that I am again in contention and that's all I can
do.

'This also is my last chance for the
World Match Play Championship as I am first reserve. But in contention
is what I expect of myself now and I like that feeling. It means I'm
consistent.'

It was a bad two days for Col in Montgomerie and Miguel Angel Jimenez, two of the best-known players in the field.

Montgomerie crashed out on nine over
and fellow 48-year-old Jimenez on 11 over after failing to break 80 for
the first time in a tournament celebrating its 100th anniversary this
year.

Willie Manu to leave Hull

Hull resigned to losing Manu after forward is given permission to talk to other clubs

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UPDATED:

18:10 GMT, 30 April 2012

Hull have admitted failure in their battle to hold onto second row forward Willie Manu.

The 32-year-old Tonga international, who is out of contract at the end of the season, has been given permission to speak to other clubs after repeatedly turning down offers of a new deal from the Black and Whites.

St Helens and Catalan Dragons are thought to be competing for the signature of Manu, who has been a major success since joining Hull from Castleford in 2007 and is in the Exiles squad for the mid-season internationals against England.

Exit: Hull FC's Willie Manu will leave at the end of the season

Exit: Hull FC's Willie Manu will leave at the end of the season

Hull director of rugby Shaun McRae said: 'We're obviously disappointed that Willie has decided to finish his career away from Hull FC but we wish him well for the future.

'We made Willie a number of large offers that would have made him considerably one of the highest earners at the club but he has decided to look for a contact elsewhere.'

Although Hull were keen to keep Manu, they have a ready-made replacement in England international Gareth Ellis, who has agreed a three-year contract from 2013, and are hoping to tie his second-row partner Danny Tickle to a new deal.

FA must break away from FIFA and use goal-line technology – Dave Whelan

FA must break away from FIFA and bring in goal-line technology, urges Whelan

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UPDATED:

17:13 GMT, 11 April 2012

Wigan chairman Dave Whelan has called on the Football Association to ignore FIFA and bring in the widespread use of video technology.

The Latics were the victims of a triple injustice at Chelsea on Saturday, when Branislav Ivanovic was not spotted appearing to strike Shaun Maloney before the Serbian scored the opening goal despite being offside.

If that was not bad enough, Juan Mata netted an injury-time winner when he was also offside and team-mates directly in front of goalkeeper Ali Al Habsi were also standing beyond the last defender.

Offside: Branislav Ivanovic (left) scored for Chelsea against Wigan on Saturday

Offside: Branislav Ivanovic (left) scored for Chelsea against Wigan on Saturday

Referees' chief Mike Riley has apologised to Wigan manager Roberto Martinez, but after a weekend when Shaun Derry was sent off for QPR and then had his one-match ban for a debatable foul on Ashley Young – who was also offside – upheld, but Mario Balotelli escaped any sanction for a woeful challenge on Arsenal's Alex Song, Whelan has decided it is time for the FA to act.

'Referees cannot be right 100 per cent of the time,' Whelan told Sky Sports News. 'They need help desperately. Had the referee been able to ask if there was anything wrong with the goal he gets the information.

'I don't understand why we don't break away from FIFA on rules like this and say we are going to turn to technology.

'We have to say to Mr Blatter, whatever you say, the Premier League will help our officials with more technology.

Offside again: Juan Mata (right) rubbed salt in Wigan's wounds

Offside again: Juan Mata (right) rubbed salt in Wigan's wounds

'Tell them, quite simply. Tennis, cricket, rugby, rugby league. Why not football Why can't we get the decisions 99.9 per cent correct.'

Whelan's sentiments are doubtless shared by many supporters. However, it seems impossible the FA will follow them up, if only because a go-it-alone stance could result in English teams not being allowed to compete in any international competition run under FIFA's direction.

FIFA are resolutely opposed to the widespread use of video technology and also the concept of games being 're-refereed' as happens in both codes of rugby.

That is particularly pertinent in the Balotelli case because it is impossible to believe the Italian would have remained on the pitch if referee Martin Atkinson or his assistants had seen the full severity of what had happened.

More likely, one of the officials did see Balotelli make a tackle without being able to gauge the severity of it.

Horror tackle: Mario Balotelli (right) escaped a red card for hacking Alex Song

Horror tackle: Mario Balotelli (right) escaped a red card for hacking Alex Song

Only afterwards did that become apparent, by which time it is too late for action to be taken, or the Football Association to act.

That is the major difference between that and Ivanovic's alleged clash with Maloney at Stamford Bridge, which occurred away from the centre of the action.

Not that anything will placate Whelan, who already this season has seen Blackburn score a goal at the DW Stadium direct from a corner Morten Gamst Pedersen took to himself.

'We have to think 'Is this a real world' Whelan added. 'We conceded a goal against Blackburn earlier this season when the lad dribbled it from a corner in front of a referee, two linesmen and a fourth official. That is unthinkable.

'Then we get the decision at Chelsea, when the lad is three yards offside.

'Had it happened to one of the big four clubs there would have been a lot more commotion. It happens to Wigan and gets brushed under the carpet. It is double standards.'

Branislav Ivanovic wanted by Real Madrid

Real Madrid target 12m Ivanovic as Mourinho looks to bolster defence

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UPDATED:

06:10 GMT, 11 April 2012

Jose Mourinho is plotting a raid on his former club as he targets the summer signing of Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic.

The Real Madrid boss is known to want to add to his defensive options and is keen to lure Ivanovic away from Stamford Bridge, according to the Daily Mirror.

Wanted man: Ivanovic is a target of Real Madrid

Wanted man: Ivanovic is a target of Real Madrid

Ivanovic – who is likely to cost in the region of 12million – has been one of Chelsea's star performers in an otherwise difficult campaign.

Since converting Sergio Ramos into a centre-back Mourinho has used either Alvaro Arbeloa or Lassana Diarra at right-back this season, and he sees the signing of a specialist in that position as a summer priority.

Keen to strengthen: Mourinho wants to add to his defensive options

Keen to strengthen: Mourinho wants to add to his defensive options

Serbian Ivanovic, 28, is currently facing a three-game ban after punching Wigan's Shaun Maloney in the stomach.