Tag Archives: speculation

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.

Roy Hodgson will "wait and see" if Rio Ferdinand has an international future after withdrawing from England squad for San Marino and…

Rio can do what he wants… but I can't guarantee he'll get another England invite, says Hodgson

By
Matt Barlow

PUBLISHED:

17:29 GMT, 21 March 2013

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UPDATED:

18:01 GMT, 21 March 2013

England manager Roy Hodgson has said he will 'wait and see' if Rio Ferdinand has an international future following the United defender's decision to withdraw from the national squad this week.

Hodgson's side take on San Marino on Friday with a depleted defence after Ferdinand withdrew from the squad to look after his chronic back problem.

But Ferdinand
sparked fresh controversy as Sportsmail exclusively revealed that the
Manchester United defender will fly to Qatar to work on a television
broadcast of Friday’s World Cup qualifier.

Waving goodbye Roy Hodgson said he will 'wait and see' if Rio Ferdinand has an international future

Waving goodbye Roy Hodgson said he will 'wait and see' if Rio Ferdinand has an international future

Unhappy: Hodgson is disappointed that Ferdinand is not with the England team

Unhappy: Hodgson is disappointed that Ferdinand is not with the England team

When pushed on Ferdinand's future as
an England player, Hodgson said: 'I think we should just wait and see, I
think it's more a question of how his injury situation will impact upon
him playing for England, so we'll have to wait and see what happens in
the future.

'At the moment it's speculation about
a longer-term future whereas my focus is on these next two games, which
are important for us in our bid to qualify. I am happy with the squad
we've got.'

Hodgson deflected questions on what he thought of Ferdinand's decision to miss the two World Cup qualifiers.

He said: 'I don't have any serious
thoughts on it. I was disappointed when he couldn't accept our
invitation. It would have been nice to have him here.'

Double header: England take on San Marion on Friday night before facing Montenegro next week

Double header: England take on San Marion on Friday night before facing Montenegro next week

Hodgson also refused to comment on Ferdinand's decision to embark on a 15-hour round trip to Doha to work as a TV pundit.

'As we all know he wasn't able to
accept the invitation so what he actually does now and how he operates
in the coming couple of weeks, that's his business and the club's
business.

'You're asking me questions that I
really don't want to go into. It really shows a lack of respect to some
extent for the players who are here,' he said.

'In this instance Rio made it clear
that he wasn't able to accept my invitation on this occasion and we will
see what happens in the future.

'What happens during this period of
time when he's looking after himself, it's up to us to look after
ourselves and do the job we've got to do in these next two matches.'

Plane stupid: Ferdinand pulled out of the England squad before agreeing to work as a TV pundit in Qatar

Plane stupid: Ferdinand pulled out of the England squad before agreeing to work as a TV pundit in Qatar

Hodgson also dismissed suggestions that Michael Carrick could step in at centre back to solve England's defensive crisis.

The England boss said: 'To accept that I would have to
accept we have problems in central defence. I think we have four very
good central defenders here.

'As far as I’m concerned I would be
loathed to start using people like Michael Carrick who has been selected
for his prowess as a midfield player.

'It would be harsh on those who have been selected as central defenders.'

Not interested: Captain Steven Gerrard is not dwelling on Ferdinand's withdrawal

Not interested: Captain Steven Gerrard is not dwelling on Ferdinand's withdrawal

England captain Steven Gerrard
believes the team have trained well without Ferdinand and is not
dwelling on the United defender's absence.

He said: 'I don't think it's for me to comment. That's something for the manager to deal with to be honest. I just look at the players in the squad and worry about them players really.

'Of course it's disappointing Rio's not here, because he's a fantastic player and he's in top form, and it would've been nice for him to be here, but he's not, we move on without him and training's been really good.'

Asked if England can cope without Ferdinand, Gerrard said: 'Yes I do, certainly on the evidence I've seen in training the last few days.

'Repeating what the manager said, the four guys have been working hard and training well and they are all pushing for places.

'I'm confident that they can not only do the job tomorrow but on Tuesday night as well.'

Michael Laudrup signs one-year contract extension at Swansea

Danish delight for Swansea as Laudrup signs one-year contract extension

By
Riath Al-samarrai

PUBLISHED:

17:12 GMT, 8 March 2013

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UPDATED:

19:20 GMT, 8 March 2013

t the club.

Michael Laudrup has moved to end speculation about his future by signing a one-year contract extension at Swansea City.

The Dane had been linked with Real Madrid and Chelsea in the wake of Swansea’s remarkable Capital One Cup final triumph against Bradford last month.

But the 48-year-old declared his desire to lead Swansea into Europe after agreeing a deal that will run until June 2015.

All smiles: Michael Laudrup agreed a one-year extension to his current deal at Swansea

All smiles: Michael Laudrup agreed a one-year extension to his current deal at Swansea

He said: ‘We’ve started something this season that I want to continue.

‘I know there has been a lot of
speculation (about my future), but I’ve always said that I am happy here
and I never had any doubts I would stay.

‘I am delighted to sign the new deal
and I’m already really looking forward to next season. I hope there will
be some very exciting things happening with the team and with the club
in Europe.’

The development will go some way to
protecting Swansea financially. Sportsmail understands that Laudrup, 48,
has committed to a hefty clause in the region of 5million, much like
the one Brendan Rodgers agreed to when he signed his extension at the
Liberty Stadium four months before joining Liverpool.

Last night Swansea chairman Huw Jenkins admitted he still fears bigger clubs will come in for his manager.

He told Sportsmail: ‘It’s a fact of
life in football that if you do well people will want your manager or
players and there is no such thing as a cast iron agreement anymore.

‘But this deal shows Michael’s desire
to stay here and it also gives us the extra financial security if
another club does come in.’

Historic: Laudrup guided Swansea to Capital One Cup success this season

Historic: Laudrup guided Swansea to Capital One Cup success this season

Historic: Laudrup guided Swansea to Capital One Cup success this season

Jenkins added: ‘The success we have
had with Michael has been brilliant. I thoroughly enjoy working with him
and long may that continue.

‘This is obviously great news for
everyone connected with the club, from the fans, to the players and the
staff. We are delighted that he has agreed this extension.’

Talks only started last week between
the two parties after Laudrup was initially reluctant to commit his
future to the club beyond stating his desire to lead the club in Europe.

Jenkins said: ‘I think the fact we got it done relatively quickly shows you what Michael thinks about the club.

‘He is enjoying himself and he finds the challenge exciting, which for him is very important.’

Grant Holt commits future to Norwich

I'm staying put: Norwich striker Holt says he is not leaving Carrow Road

By
Lee Bryan

PUBLISHED:

12:01 GMT, 2 March 2013

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UPDATED:

12:01 GMT, 2 March 2013

Grant Holt has put an end to speculation over his future by committing himself to Norwich.

Rumours had been circulating that Holt was set for a move to Celtic after he bought a house in his hometown of Carlisle.

But the striker has denied any talk of a move away from Carrow Road.

Going nowhere: Grant Holt says he is staying at Norwich

Going nowhere: Grant Holt says he is staying at Norwich

He said: 'There’s been a lot of talk about me leaving but it’s all news to me. Yes, we’ve bought a house, but just for the schools.

'It means a lot of driving but I’m used to that.

'I signed a three-year contract last year and will see it through. I will stay for as long as the manager and club want me.'

Stephen Hendry backs Ronnie O"Sullivan to defend World Championship … if he wants to

Hendry backs O'Sullivan to defend World Championship … if he wants to

By
Steven Donaldson

PUBLISHED:

23:50 GMT, 23 February 2013

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UPDATED:

23:50 GMT, 23 February 2013

Stephen Hendry is convinced Ronnie
O'Sullivan would be a serious Crucible contender if he decides to cut
short his break from the sport to defend the World Championship title.

O'Sullivan, 37, will make a statement regarding his future in the sport at a press conference in London at midday on Tuesday.

He has played only one low-profile
match in competition this season, and announced in November he would be
skipping the rest of the campaign for personal reasons.

Title holder: Ronnie O'Sullivan

Title holder: Ronnie O'Sullivan

But there has been speculation almost ever since that O'Sullivan would be unable to resist the temptation to make a bid for a fifth world title.

He has apparently reached a decision, and Hendry expects it to be that O'Sullivan will make a dramatic comeback.

The entry deadline for the World Championship is the end of February, and the scheduling of his press conference for Tuesday – two days before the deadline – has only heightened speculation O'Sullivan will play.

'I would presume that's what it's for but you never know with Ronnie,' Hendry told talkSPORT.

'When I spoke to him last year, I said, “All you'll need is three or four weeks of really good practice … and you'll be well capable of winning it”.

'Maybe play a couple of best-of-19s against some top players and he'll be ready.'

Hendry says it would be positive news for snooker if the Chigwell cueman was ready to return.

Backing Ronnie: Retired snooker legend Stephen Hendry

Backing Ronnie: Retired snooker legend Stephen Hendry

'Absolutely, especially for the other players because you don't want to win the World Championship with the best player not there,' Scotland's seven-time world champion said.

Hendry retired last May, and it remains a possibility that O'Sullivan will say he too is bowing out of snooker on Tuesday.

Jimmy White, who wrote on Twitter on Thursday that he thought O'Sullivan was planning not to play, is now not so sure what to expect.

'Looking at the time frame, probably he will play,' White said. 'Who says he hasn't been practising, who knows that

'He may be saying he's never going to play again, who knows'

White promised: 'If Ronnie does decide to play, I'll go over there and give him some practice games.'

Rangers extend Scott Gallacher"s contract as Ally McCoist hopes to strengthen his keeper options

Rangers extend Gallacher contract as McCoist hopes to strengthen keeper options

By
Graeme Yorke

PUBLISHED:

20:58 GMT, 18 February 2013

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UPDATED:

20:58 GMT, 18 February 2013

Rangers have signed second-choice goalkeeper Scott Gallacher on a two-year contract extension.

The 23-year-old has not made a first-team appearance but has played for Cowdenbeath and Forfar on loan.

Gallacher told the club's official website: 'It's really good to sign another contract. This is a great club to be at and I grew up supporting Rangers so I'm delighted to be staying on once again.

Bidding: Rangers' manager Ally McCoist is hoping to sign several keeper soon

Bidding: Rangers' manager Ally McCoist is hoping to sign several keeper soon

'I've been here for seven years now and I'm still waiting for my chance but hopefully it can come soon.

'”We're not far from winning the league so hopefully we can do that and then I can get to play in one of the remaining games after that.

'It's down to the gaffer and (goalkeeping coach) Jim Stewart to decide whether that happens or not but I would love an opportunity to show what I can do.'

Rangers manager Ally McCoist is hoping to sign Kilmarnock goalkeeper Cammy Bell on a pre-contract agreement and also trying to extend Neil Alexander's contract, stating he would send Gallacher on loan if both deals come off.

Gallacher added: 'I'm glad the management have the trust in me to offer me an extended stay and I'm looking to repay them for that.

'There has been a bit of speculation about goalkeepers lately and Rangers are a massive club so you're always going to have that.

'That's something you get used to and accept. You take it as it comes but all I can do is do my best and hope things work in my favour.'

Manchester United are to lose out to Bayern Munich in the race to sign Robert Lewandowski

United left reeling as Bayern set to sign hot shot Lewandowski

By
Simon Peach, Press Association

PUBLISHED:

13:37 GMT, 10 February 2013

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UPDATED:

13:58 GMT, 10 February 2013

Manchester United have been left reeling after Lothar Matthaus has said that Bayern Munich are closing in on the signing of forward Robert Lewandowski from Borussia Dortmund.

Recent reports in the German media claimed the 24-year-old, whose contract expires next year, was set to become Pep Guardiola’s first recruit upon taking charge at the Allianz Arena in June, meaning United would miss out on the striker.

Despite Dortmund’s continual denials that they have agreed a deal to sell Lewandowski , the legendary midfielder appeared to add fuel to the speculation that he will leave, but stay in Germany.

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In demand: Robert Lewandowski has attracted interest from many top clubs

In demand: Robert Lewandowski has attracted interest from many top clubs

'I was on the road this week. I heard that Lewandowski has an agreement with Bayern. Only the date of the move remains undecided,' Matthaus told Sky Bundesliga.

'Lewandowski’s contract runs out in 2014 and Dortmund will only get a fee in 2013 – surely a high fee. I heard it was something between 20m-25m, otherwise he will go to Bayern for free next year.'

Detemrined: Up to now Dortmund have be insistent that he is staying

Detemrined: Up to now Dortmund have be insistent that he is staying

Matthaus then explained how the Poland international would serve as a better option in Guardiola’s attack than central striker Mario Gomez.

'I think he is a player that fits more into the system of Guardiola than Gomez,' he added.

'He showed Guardiola last week in Leverkusen how a forward is not only an attacker but also drops deeper.'

However, the striker showed his temperamental side after getting sent off for a wild tackle against Hamburg, appearing to have lost his head.

Benitez will have no more money to spend in the transfer window

Window of opportunity closing for Benitez as Chelsea tighten the purse-strings

By
Ben Rumsby, Press Association

PUBLISHED:

15:44 GMT, 29 January 2013

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UPDATED:

16:03 GMT, 29 January 2013

Rafael Benitez today admitted he does not think Chelsea will give him any more money to spend before the transfer window closes.

Interim Blues boss Benitez confirmed last week he had told owner Roman Abramovich that his squad was not strong enough to cope with the unprecedented fixture pile-up facing them this season.

But he appears to have given up hope of being allowed to add to the January signing of Demba Ba before Thursday’s transfer deadline.

Benitez admits there are no more funds for transfers

The well runs dry: Benitez admits there are no more funds for transfers

Benitez isn't expecting to add any signings to Demba Ba

No more: Benitez isn't expecting to add any signings to Demba Ba

David Moyes is said to be a possible replacement for the manager next season

On the way out: David Moyes is said to be a possible replacement for the manager next season

Asked if he anticipated any movement in the final 48 hours of the window, he said: 'I don’t think so but my job is to improve my squad and manage the situation we have.'

Abramovich and the board’s reluctance to back Benitez in the transfer market will reinforce the view that he has become a dead man walking at Stamford Bridge just over two months after succeeding Roberto Di Matteo.

It is understood there is currently no prospect of him losing his job before his contract expires this summer but reports persist that the club are already actively discussing replacing him next season.

Benitez shrugged off the speculation, which has included Everton boss David Moyes being linked with his job.

'My position is exactly the same,” he said, confirming he had held talks with technical director Michael Emenalo in the wake of Sunday’s FA Cup fourth-round draw at Brentford.

'I was speaking about football with Michael Emenalo, as normal.

'I will try to do my job as well as I can, and try to do my best every game.'

West Brom reject QPR"s bid for Jonas Olsson

Blow for Redknapp as Baggies reject QPR's 5m bid for Olsson

By
Lee Bryan

PUBLISHED:

08:15 GMT, 10 January 2013

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UPDATED:

10:59 GMT, 10 January 2013

West Brom have rejected a bid from QPR – believed to be around 5million – for defender Jonas Olsson.

Olsson only signed a new four-year contract with the Baggies in October.
The Swedish international is reported to be keen on a move to London for family reasons, but Albion have turned down the offer from Rangers.

Top target: Jonas Olsson is the man Harry Redkapp wants to sign

Top target: Jonas Olsson is the man Harry Redkapp wants to sign

Olsson is also understood to have reservations about any potential move to Loftus Road given their precarious position in the Barclays Premier League.

In any case, Baggies manager Steve Clarke made it clear last week he has no desire to let Olsson go during the January transfer window – and that stance has not altered.

Clarke said: 'Why would I expect to lose Jonas in January January is the silly season.

Looking to strengthen: Harry Redknapp wants to add to his defence

Looking to strengthen: Harry Redknapp wants to add to his defence

'We can hang on to every single player. We don't have to sell anybody.'
Olsson has also been linked with Arsenal, amidst speculation he has a get-out clause in the contract he signed three months ago.

The 29-year-old has been one of Albion's key performers since joining them four and a half years ago.

His form for the Baggies has also led to him becoming a regular for his country.

Wesley Sneijder plays down Liverpool move

Sneijder plays down 9.5m move to Liverpool as Inter Milan midfielder eyes January exit

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UPDATED:

14:31 GMT, 31 December 2012

Unsettled Inter Milan midfielder Wesley Sneijder has moved to dampen speculation linking him with a January move to Liverpool.

Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport reported on Sunday that the Reds had made a 9.5million offer for the Dutchman.

Sneijder has been left feeling isolated at the San Siro after snubbing a suggested annual pay cut of 1.6million and then being dropped from the first-team.

On the move: Inter Milan's Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder is heading for the exit in the January transfer window

On the move: Inter Milan's Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder is heading for the exit in the January transfer window

But he denied there was any foundation in the story linking him to an Anfield switch when asked about it on Monday, telling a press conference: ‘Again, no truth’.

The 28-year old – who has also attracted interest from Manchester United and Tottenham – reacted furiously to Inter’s proposed salary cut and demanded a move, putting the pressure on the Serie A outfit to sell him for close to the same 15million euro fee they paid Real Madrid in 2009.

Red alert: How Sneijder would look in Liverpool coloursRed alert: How Sneijder would look in Liverpool colours

Red alert: How Sneijder would look in Liverpool colours

‘Clearly it’s best for everyone concerned that in January I am transferred,’ he said defiantly. ‘If that doesn’t happen then I will stay. I have a contract with Inter until 2015.’

Manager Andrea Stramaccioni has since dropped Sneijder from the squad over the bitter dispute.

His wage bill is currently 200,000 per week and Inter will be relieved to offload the financial burden. Liverpool’s coffers, however, are unlikely to be able to stretch to such levels.

Talk of a move to Spurs for the Holland international cooled when his agent told Dutch paper Algemeen Dagblad:

‘There is nothing, absolutely nothing true about that.’

United are also thought to be weighing up a January bid for the former Ajax man.