Tag Archives: stadiums

Rugby World Cup 2015: Football grounds make up three-quarters of the venues

The 2015 Rugby World Cup… coming soon to a football ground near you (but at least Twickenham gets the final)

By
Rik Sharma

PUBLISHED:

10:58 GMT, 3 March 2013

|

UPDATED:

12:12 GMT, 3 March 2013

The venues for England's Rugby World Cup in 2015 have been revealed and three-quarters of the selected stadiums are football grounds.

Wembley, Old Trafford and St James' Park will host fixtures while the likes of Leicester Tigers' Welford Road and Harlequins' Twickenham Stoop have been overlooked.

The only club rugby ground which has been selected is Gloucester's Kingsholm, while the Millenium Stadium and Twickenham, which will host the final, are the other recognised rugby stadiums on the list.

Unfamiliar surroundings: The All Blacks could be playing at Wembley, which hosts six fixtures

Unfamiliar surroundings: The All Blacks could be playing at Wembley, which hosts six fixtures

RWC2015 Venues

Twickenham (Hosting 8 games inc. final, capacity 82,000)

Millennium Stadium (8, 74,500)

Wembley (6, 90,000)

Kingsholm (4, 16,500)

King Power Stadium (4, 32,262)

Amex Stadium (3, 27,350)

Villa Park or Ricoh Arena (3, 42,788 or 32,609)

Ashton Gate (3, 21,497)

Stadium MK (3, 22,000 planned increase to 32,000)

St James' Park (2, 52,387)

Elland Road (2, 37,697)

Old Trafford (2, 75,765)

Unless the Olympic Stadium becomes available before the venues are officially announced later this month, these are the final selections according to the Sunday Times.

The only issue left to resolve is whether Villa Park or the Ricoh Arena will be used.

But a spokesman for the 2015 Rugby World Cup denied the list was valid.

'That list is not at all true. It is entirely speculation,' he said. 'It is not the final list.

'The long-list has been in the public domain for a long time. The use of football stadiums was a part of the bid which was well documented.'

Leicester Tigers are particularly angry that Welford Road (24,000) is being overlooked in favour of Leicester City's King Power Stadium (32,000).

Larger capacities – and therefore the potential for more tickets sold – are the reason football stadiums are being used.

The organisers need an average
attendance of 55,000 in order to reach the 80million guarantee they
have made to the International Rugby Board.

Tigers
chairman Peter Tom had expressed his shock and disappointment at the
decision on the club's official website. 'We are hugely disappointed to
learn that Welford Road will not play a part in England's hosting of the
Rugby World Cup in 2015,' he said.

'Welford
Road has hosted many, many major occasions over the years, including
visits from South Africa, Australia and Argentina national teams in
recent seasons. It is home to the best-supported and most successful
club in the history of the professional game in this country and, as
such, we believe is worthy of Rugby World Cup status.

Snub: Leicester Tigers' ground Welford Road is being overlooked

Snub: Leicester Tigers' ground Welford Road is being overlooked

Selected: Newcastle's St James' Park will be used

Selected: Newcastle's St James' Park will be used

'That the organisers of RWC2015 do not think this an appropriate venue for its fixtures is disappointing and confusing both for the professional club game in this country and for its supporters.'

An RFU statement suggested the larger capacities and better facilities on offer at modern football stadiums led to the controversial policy.

It read: 'The selection procedure for the long list of venues took into account a geographical spread across the country, sporting and facilities criteria, levels of support from candidate host cities and capacity requirements for the successful delivery of a Rugby World Cup.'

Fabio Capello: I want to manage in England again

Capello opens door to England return: 'I miss it, the packed stadiums… and Russia has worse problem with foreign players'

By
Adam Crafton

PUBLISHED:

01:31 GMT, 23 February 2013

|

UPDATED:

01:42 GMT, 23 February 2013

Fabio Capello has opened the door to Premier League suitors, declaring his fascination for English football and revealing his difficulties adapting to life as manager of the Russian national team.

Speaking through a translator at a question and answer session at the Cambridge Union, the former England boss revealed his strong passion for English football.

He said: 'The Premier League is absolutely fascinating. I would be available and would be flattered to be linked with jobs in this league.

Longing: Fabio Capello admitted he misses England after taking over as the manager of Russia

Longing: Fabio Capello admitted he misses England after taking over as the manager of Russia

'Both my wife and I enjoyed our time in the UK and what I miss about football in the UK is that the stadiums are packed, whereas the Russian league is often half-empty.

'I am used to the media attention from Italy and Spain, and I can handle the newspapers and press here. It is just part of the job. In Russia, it is great because nobody can read the newspapers!

Although Capello is finding the Russian media easy to deal with, the Italian revealed the frustrations he has found as he tries to get to grips with the Russian language.

He said: 'It is not difficult when we train but it is very hard to pass on my emotions and motivation to the players and I have to rely on the translator.

'Before a match, I show the players videos and show them bullet points to get my point across but the translator even has to write these because the Russian language has a different alphabet. Sometimes, the translator relates the concepts but not with the feeling that I want to convey.'

Defender: Capello consistently backed John Terry despite his off-the-field problems

Defender: Capello consistently backed John Terry despite his off-the-field problems

New horizons: Capello hopes to lead Russia to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil

New horizons: Capello hopes to lead Russia to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil

Along with the language-barrier, the former Real Madrid and AC Milan boss has grown frustrated with the small pool of Russian players that he has to work with, believing the influx of foreign players in the Russian league to be an ailment even more chronic than the same issue facing the English Premier League, while the long travelling is also proving problematic.

He said: 'I used to complain that there are only playing 38 per cent of Premier League players that are English but the situation is even worse in Russia on this issue. To attract players to Russia, a lot of money is needed.

'Moreover, many of the best teams with these huge private benefactors are located at the borders of Russia so it is a lot of travelling for me.'

And the former Three Lions boss couldn't mask his surprise that AC Milan decided to pay 21million to take Mario Balotelli back to Italy.

Mario Balotelli

Mario Balotelli

All change: Mario Balotelli moved from Manchester City to AC Milan in the January transfer window

He said: 'When I found out that Milan were signing Balotelli, I thought it was crazy! But he has been playing brilliantly since arriving, he has had no problems with the referee and he can make a difference, as he has showed with four goals in three games. He’s great – but it’s impossible to manage Balotelli!

'With these players, like I had with Antonio Cassano myself you have to speak to them to explain exactly what they have to do before the game – but within five minutes they do whatever they want anyway!'

Saracens and Ulster Heineken Cup quarter-final at Twickenham

Twickenham to host Heineken Cup quarter-final between Saracens and Ulster

By
Mike Dawes

PUBLISHED:

13:05 GMT, 30 January 2013

|

UPDATED:

15:57 GMT, 30 January 2013

Saracens have announced their Heineken Cup quarter-final against Ulster on April 6 will be played at Twickenham.

The Aviva Premiership club's new Allianz Park home, complete with its artificial playing surface, had been mooted as a possible venue.

Bumper crowd: Saracens will host Ulster at Twickenham in April

Bumper crowd: Saracens will host Ulster at Twickenham in April

But club chairman Nigel Wray told Saracens' official website today that the game will be staged at Twickenham.

'We look forward to playing this important match at the home of English rugby, a ground that many of our players know extremely well,' Wray said.

'It is absolutely clear that people want to see big teams playing big matches at big stadiums, and that is precisely what we will deliver at Twickenham.

Happy memories: Sarries won the Aviva Premiership title at HQ in 2011

Happy memories: Sarries won the Aviva Premiership title at HQ in 2011

'We did consider the option of playing this showpiece match at Allianz Park, our brand new home stadium in NW4, but, in consultation with local residents and our partners at the London Borough of Barnet, we have decided to settle at the new venue before applying to stage a one-off event with a larger capacity.'

Harlequins will host Munster at their Twickenham Stoop home the following day, with the quarter-final line-up completed by Leicester visiting Toulon and Clermont Auvergne hosting Montpellier.

Edgar Davids – The Footballers Football Column: Players are predators that"s why Benitez may struggle at Chelsea

EDGAR DAVIDS: Players are predators that's why Benitez may struggle at Chelsea… And sometimes the best players are not the most talented – just look at Roy Keane

/12/20/article-2251180-169642D2000005DC-858_196x175.jpg” width=”196″ height=”175″ alt=”Edgar Davids” class=”blkBorder” />

Edgar Davids today launches a new series of columns for Sportsmail titled The Footballers' Football Column. They're about the game, written by people involved in the game.
European champion Davids has won 11 major trophies (and we mean 'major', we're not counting Super Cups and Community Shield-type trophies). He was capped 74 times for Holland. Now player-manager at League Two Barnet, 'The Pitbull' has plenty to say…

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Who are you People chant it at stadiums – 'Who are ya Who are ya' – but I think it’s a funny thing to sing, even to the opposite team, because what are they actually asking

Ask most people and they will say their name or profession, but you have to know who you are, both physically and mentally. It’s really important in football, because then you know your trigger points, how to adapt and improve.

It’s one of the first things I do when I start working with players, especially the younger ones.

Post man: A 19-year-old Davids defending the near post for Ajax in November 1992

Post man: A 19-year-old Davids defending the near post for Ajax in November 1992. It was at Ajax he played on with serious dental work

As a footballer, for example, sometimes you have pain. But
is it pain you can play with, or will playing only make it worse I
think more than 70 per cent of players play with injuries.

They always have something wrong with
them. I can’t even remember playing a game without pain. People don’t
see the determination behind getting on the pitch every week.

If your manager needs you to play it’s like: 'Yes sir, I will play.'

I remember at Ajax getting a kick in
my face and when I touched my mouth for the first time I couldn’t feel
any teeth. I had almost about 40 injections and braces and the next day I
went in for training.

The manager wanted me back the following Sunday and that was it. Get on with it.

I know myself, so that’s the main
thing. Visually, my trademarks have always been my glasses and hair. My
knowledge of myself hasn't changed much over the years.

You need to develop and stay ahead of
the competition. Being a coach now, you see some young guys who don’t
know themselves – but they think they do.

Some of them really in believe in the
hype. When they’re asked who they are, they would say 'a football
player'. They believe all the hype that comes with that.

That's why I can understand people thinking Arsene Wenger should bring back Thierry Henry to Arsenal. If you have a young team, you also need guys to guide them.

With Thierry, he’s a charismatic
person and he was Arsenal’s team leader for a long time. He knows the
dressing room and how the club works.

Pain game: Davids, 39, suffers an arm injury during Barnet's draw at Exeter last weekend

Pain game: Davids, 39, suffers an arm injury during Barnet's draw at Exeter last weekend

It’s very important to have someone
like that, who isn’t a coach or an assistant manager, because most of
the time, the coaches have got to keep a professional distance from the
players.

If you look at a player like Roy
Keane you would say: 'He’s a great player but you don’t see the
leadership and the energy he transmitted to the team which make him a
world class player.

You can’t measure that. Sometimes the
best players are not the most talented, but what they do for your team
is very, very valuable: they help your team keep its shape, desire and
discipline and they know their limitations.

King Henry: Thierry scores to make it 7-1 to Arsenal against Blackburn last February. His worth to Arsenal is more than just goals

King Henry: Thierry scores to make it 7-1 to Arsenal against Blackburn last February. His worth to Arsenal is more than just goals

Keen on Keane: Manchester United's former captain, here clashing with Arsenal's Patrick Vieira in 1991, was not the greatest talent but was a top, top player

Keen on Keane: Manchester United's former captain, here clashing with Arsenal's Patrick Vieira in 1991, was not the greatest talent but was a top, top player

THE NEXT FOOTBALLERS' FOOTBALL COLUMN…

Tomorrow: Mad Dog Martin Allen – Did I dive 'Course I did…

Then you have players who are
brilliantly gifted but, if they’re having a bad day, it’s like playing
with 10 men. If he’s on fire, it’s like playing with 12, so you have to
take that risk because he’s that good.

In south America it’s different – if
you’re that good they’ll just leave you be – but, in Holland, we have
been taught that everybody has to be the same.

My philosophy is a little bit
different. If the group accepted it, I did too. Is this how I want to
play, or not You have to be flexible, but you can only be flexible if
you know yourself.

Football players can be like predators.
They will study you. They will try to find your weakness. It’s ego. The
guys who are not playing will watch you like hawks. They will be on
your case because they all want to play in their position no matter who
the coach is.

If a player or a coach is under
pressure and the others think he is going to leave there is only brief
respect. That could be hard for Rafa Benitez, for example.

Captain, leader, Pitbull: Barnet player/manager Edgar Davids makes his point to referee Christopher Sarginson at half-time during the 2-2 draw at Exeter last Saturday

Captain, leader, Pitbull: Barnet player/manager Edgar Davids makes his point to referee Christopher Sarginson at half-time during the 2-2 draw at Exeter last Saturday

The main man: Davids (centre) has been installed as the solo head coach at Underhill after Mark Robson (left) departed the club. Director of football Paul Fairclough is seated (right)

The main man: Davids (centre) has been installed as the solo head coach at Underhill after Mark Robson (left) departed the club. Director of football Paul Fairclough is seated (right)

I don’t know what the dynamics are at
Chelsea, but if everyone knows a manager is only going to be there for
six months it’s very hard.

We have a saying: 'New round, new
chances'. That’s why you usually see an immediate improvement when a new
manager comes in, because that little game is starting again.

Football is very passionate,
of course it is, but it’s also a business. As a player, you want to
improve, you want to have a certain salary, play in the position you
want to play and maybe have a shot at a championship or play in the
Champions League.

You don’t think about playing in a
different shirt in front of different fans. It’s more about wanting to
go somewhere at the top and improve yourself. It’s a short career, after
all. But if you play for certain teams with certain fans winning and
high in the hierarchy is living the dream.

UEFA Champions League Final, Vienna, Austria, 24th May 1995, Ajax 1 v AC Milan 0, Frank Rijkaard (centre) and team-mate Edgar Davids hold the trophy aloft as they celebrate their victory

Torres warning: The Chelsea striker, in action during the 5-1 demolition of Leeds, must score more goals according to Davids

Show us your medals: Davids lifts the 1995 Champions League trophy with Frank Ri9jkarrd at Ajax and Torres (right) in action during the 5-1 Capital One Cup demolition of Leeds, needs to score more goals

Money often plays its part in
football. If you’re the best player but you’re not paid the best wages,
you can feel and can be seen lower in the hierarchy and that’s a pride
thing.

If you’re the best player you want to
be paid the best wages. It’s not necessarily about the money but it’s
about feeling appreciated and your skills and worth recognised. Titles
and a reflective wage is relevant is all businesses and industries.

Look at Fernando Torres at Chelsea.
He joined the club and he sat on the bench, but he still earned his
money and got a Champions League winner's medal. Would he have been
happy No.

He’s a good player but he hasn’t
scored too many goals for Chelsea. Now he’s doing better but he’s a
striker: he’s got to score more goals. He would definitely want to be a
more dominant force for his side than he currently is.

TOMORROW'S FOOTBALLERS' FOOTBALL COLUMN: MAD DOG MARTIN ALLEN – DIVE 'COURSE I DID

The Walcott is being chased by Manchester United and Chelsea, but is he worth it?

Theo-logical debate: Untapped potential or a waste of money

|

UPDATED:

17:00 GMT, 14 December 2012

Arsene Wenger has made it clear he wants to keep Theo Walcott at Arsenal, but so far the young forward has been holding out for higher wage than currently on offer.

But read around club forums and listen in at stadiums, and you will find that no player splits opinion quite like the man who inherited Thierry Henry's No 14 shirt. And it's no different at Sportsmail HQ.

Adam Crafton sits firmly in Theo's corner, insisting the Gunners would be crazy to let him go, while Mark Alford simply can't see what all the fuss is about.

Mixed feelings: Theo Walcott splits opinions like no other player in the Premier League

Mixed feelings: Theo Walcott splits opinions like no other player in the Premier League

Mixed feelings: Theo Walcott splits opinions like no other player in the Premier League

/12/14/article-2248191-0B13D1CC000005DC-674_634x344.jpg” width=”634″ height=”344″ alt=”Familiar tale: Aside from his shortcomings as a player, Walcott has a disappointing injury record” class=”blkBorder” />

Familiar tale: Aside from his shortcomings as a player, Walcott has a disappointing injury record

Arsenal would be better off without him, according to the stats. They concede fewer goals when he isn’t playing, averaging 1.14 goals conceded per game when he’s in the team and 0.83 when he’s absent.

Damningly, Arsenal’s win percentage is 54 per cent with him in the team and 54 per cent without him. No Theo, no difference. No-one would notice.

And here’s the clincher. Theo Walcott, potent attacking force…161 career appearances for the Gunners, just 30 goals and only 29 assists.

Dear me, he’s been nicking a living.

He’s turned down a 75,000-a-week contract offer, holding out for 100,000-a-week. I pity the fool willing to pay him that.

Arsenal PL
With Walcott Playing
Without Walcott Playing
Games
161
83
Wins
87
45
Draws
36
28
Losses
38
10
Average Goals For
1.97
1.72
Average Goals Against
1.14
0.83
Win %
54%
54%
Points Per Game
1.84
1.96

Game changer: Walcott's pace is a hugely valuable asset to any team

Game changer: Walcott's pace is a hugely valuable asset to any team

/13 Min Per GoalsPlayer
Country
Goals
Mins/Goal
Defoe, Jermain
England
9
140.67
Walcott, Theo
England
4
149
Rooney, Wayne
England
6
153
Le Fondre, Adam
England
4
207
Lambert, Rickie
England
6
209

Premier League fans shouldn"t be treated like animals, says Vincent Kompany

Fans aren't animals! Kompany dismisses calls for netting at Premier League stadiums

|

UPDATED:

11:00 GMT, 14 December 2012

Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany has urged the football authorities not to treat supporters like animals by erecting netting in front of them at stadia in the Barclays Premier League.

Kompany was at City’s Etihad Stadium as Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand was struck with a coin at the end of last weekend’s derby game.

That incident prompted calls for nets to be erected in certain areas at grounds across the country to protect players from missiles.

Missiles: Manchester United players, including Rio Ferdinand, were pelted with missiles as they celebrated their late win in the derby at the Etihad Stadium

Missiles: Manchester United players, including Rio Ferdinand, were pelted with missiles as they celebrated their late win in the derby at the Etihad Stadium

No net gains: Vincent Kompany doesn't want to see fans fenced in at stadiums

No net gains: Vincent Kompany doesn't want to see fans fenced in at stadiums

But Belgian defender Kompany said: 'I hope actions will be taken but let’s not forget where football has come from and how far it has come.

'It is never a good thing to happen, not just for Manchester City or Manchester United, but for football.

'I would definitely say we need action on prevention but keep treating fans as human beings and not animals that have to be behind cages.

'I do think we should take action against these incidents and I have heard a lot of suggestions about putting up nets and everything.

'But the fact we are able to put people outside of cages is something that makes the English game so much more special.'

Kompany – who is fighting to recover from injury in time for Saturday's visit to Newcastle – was speaking to BBC’s Football Focus during City’s annual visit to Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital.

Roma fans banned from football for five years after attack on Tottenham supporters

Roma fans arrested after attack on Spurs supporters are banned from football stadiums for five years

|

UPDATED:

12:37 GMT, 29 November 2012

Two Roma supporters arrested in connection with a brutal attack on a group of Spurs fans have been banned from all football grounds for five years.

Francesco Ianiari, 26, and Mauro Pinnelli, 25, were arrested within hours of the raid on The Drunken Ship pub which left three Spurs fans seriously injured – including Ashley Mills, 25, who is still in hospital after suffering a potentially fatal knife wound to his groin.

Both Ianiari and Pinnelli are in custody after their arrest last week and they have been charged with aggravated assault – an initial charge of attempted murder has been dropped but police say they do not rule out further arrests in connection with the incident.

Scene of the crime: The Drunken Ship pub in Rome

Scene of the crime: The Drunken Ship pub in Rome

Scene of the crime: The Drunken Ship pub in Rome

The Spurs fans were attacked as they drank in the Rome pub, a popular meeting point for visiting fans, ahead of their Europa League clash with Lazio and which ended in a 0-0 draw.

Around 50 masked men were involved the ambush and they used knives, clubs, belts and sticks to attack the Spurs fans who had been drinking peacefully just minutes earlier.

The attackers barricaded the doors and were also said to have chanted anti-Semitic slogans against the Spurs fans, who traditionally have a large Jewish fanbase, during the lightening raid which was over in less that ten minutes.

Ambush: Ashley Mills was stabbed in the groin

Ambush: Ashley Mills was stabbed in the groin

Ambush: Ashley Mills was stabbed in the groin

However Lazio's president Claudio Lotito
has denied that his side's fans were involved and he has also stressed
they are not racist – earlier this week the side took to the field
wearing shirts with the slogan 'No to Racism'.

He also visited Mr Mills in the San Camillo hospital presenting him with a Lazio shirt which had his name on it. Lawyers defending both men also insist there was no racist element to the attack and it was a purely 'football related'.

Hospital visit: Lazio president Claudio Lotito (centre) leaves the San Camillo Hospital after visiting Mills

Hospital visit: Lazio president Claudio Lotito (centre) leaves the San Camillo Hospital after visiting Mills

The attack was initially blamed on Lazio fans but there was surprise when it turned out the two arrested were Roma fans, although there has been speculation it was a joint effort raid after both sets of supporters put aside their rivalries to attack the Britons.

No court date has yet been set for Ianari and Pinnelli's trial and Essex builder Mr Mills is expected to be released from hospital within the next few days.

Rangers Ibrox stadium could be renamed Sports Direct Arena by Newcastle owner Mike Ashley

Iconic Ibrox to become Sports Direct Arena Newcastle owner Ashley wants second major stadium controversially renamed

|

UPDATED:

09:29 GMT, 29 November 2012

Newcastle owner Mike Ashley is understood to be in negotiations with Rangers for naming rights to the Glasgow club’s iconic Ibrox Stadium.

The proposed deal would lead to one of football’s most famous stadiums, which opened in 1899, being renamed the Sports Direct Arena to promote Ashley’s sports retail empire.

Rangers have been exploring image rights deals since the Charles Green-led consortium took over the troubled club last June, shortly before they were demoted to the Third Division.

What's in a name: Mike Ashley is in talks over the naming rights of Ibrox

What's in a name: Mike Ashley is in talks over the naming rights of Ibrox

What's in a name: Mike Ashley is in talks over the naming rights of Ibrox

However, any move to rename the stadium is certain to anger many Rangers fans, even given the club’s financial plight.

Indeed, many would never acknowledge Ibrox being called anything else.

Ashley caused fury on Tyneside a year ago by renaming Newcastle’s own historic St James’ Park as the Sports Direct Arena, to showcase the branding opportunities to potential naming rights partners.

But Newcastle reverted back to St James’ Park last month in a bid to appease growing supporter concern about another re-naming —to the Wonga Arena — after a new 32million shirt sponsorship deal was signed with the controversial short-term loan company who charge huge interest.

Now, despite that setback, the opportunity to have his company name on an even more world-renowned football venue greatly appeals to Ashley, who is expanding his Sports Direct business in Scotland.

OTHER STADIA WITH SPONSORS

Arsenal – The Emirates
The Gunners signed a 100m deal with Emirates Airline in October 2004 in a 15-year deal, which was extended last week until 2028.

Stoke City – The Britannia Stadium
The building society were instrumental in funding the 27,000-capacity stadium and signed a 1m, 10-year sponsorship deal in August 1997, later extended.

Bolton Wanderers – The Reebok Stadium
The stadium was named after long-time kit supplier and local company Reebok when it opened in 1997.

Sponsorship: Bolton's home has always been known as the Reebok

Sponsorship: Bolton's home has always been known as the Reebok


Dagenham and Redbridge – London Borough of Barking and Dagenham Stadium
English football's most bizarre sponsorship tie-up and unwieldy title, announced in July 2007.

Ireland – The Aviva Stadium
Built on the site of Lansdowne Road, this new 52,000 seater stadium was sponsored from its opening.

Spectacular: The Aviva Stadium in Dublin

Spectacular: The Aviva Stadium in Dublin

Imtech Arena – Hamburg
Previous incarnations have been the AOL and the HSH Nordbank Arena, but from July 2010 Hamburg's home has been sponsored by the biological sciences company.

Dick's Sporting Goods Park – Colorado Rapids
A good number of MLS teams play in branded stadia, but this has to be the most ridiculous.

Pizza Hut Park – FC Dallas
Reflecting the American's love of fast food is the home of Texan MLS franchise FC Dallas. Pizza Hut have their headquarters nearby.

Something to tell us

Former Brazil captain Zico announced
his resignation as coach of Iraq following a contract dispute, just
after he shared a conference panel with England manager Roy Hodgson at
the Soccerex conference in Rio, which discussed international football.

Exit: Zico has quit as manager of Iraq following a contract dispute

Exit: Zico has quit as manager of Iraq following a contract dispute

Trash room talking

The peace talks between Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck and the 16 elite referees following the false Mark Clattenburg racism allegations took place in a meeting room in the budget Hampton by Hilton hotel wing of St George’s Park.

However, the officials each have luxury rooms in the alternative upmarket Hilton accommodation at SGP during their regular training camps. These have moved from Warwick University, where the referees had to double up in basic student rooms.

Rad deal

Ronnie Radford’s iconic 1972 winning goal for Hereford against Newcastle is such an FA Cup staple that Conference sponsors Blue Square Bet are pledging to give the non-League club 500 for every fan who finds the top corner of the net in a recreation of the Radford strike taking place at Edgar Street tomorrow.

Stadium solution close

The future of the Olympic Stadium will become clearer on Wednesday when West Ham are expected to be finally named as preferred bidders following a legacy process branded a ‘farce’ by UK Athletics chairman Ed Warner.

There is optimism a solution can at last be reached in the financial wrangling over who pays what for transforming a 500million track-and-field arena into a multi-sports stadium that could cost a further 200m.

Up for grabs: West Ham set to be named preferred Olympic Stadium bidders

Up for grabs: West Ham set to be named preferred Olympic Stadium bidders

Negotiations now surround only the final 20m to 30m of the spend with the Government hopeful the London Legacy Development Corporation, plus West Ham and Newham Council, will contribute more — along with Whitehall — to make the numbers stack up.

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Charles Sale: Games success helps the healing between FIFA and FA
21/11/12

Charles Sale: Richards causes ructions at the FA
21/11/12

Charles Sale: Premier League's TV deal bonanza continues as tender on course to reach 5bn after Indonesia and New Zealand sign up
20/11/12

VIEW FULL ARCHIVE

Woman's touch

Heather Rabbatts, the first woman and mixed-race member of the FA board, has emerged as a contender to succeed David Bernstein as FA chairman next May.

And Rabbatts’ chances are improved by the other FA independent director Roger Devlin ruling himself out by being on the nominations panel.

Football League chairman Greg Clarke is another being linked with the FA job as well as the Premier League chairmanship, although London 2012 vice-chairman Sir Keith Mills could have his pick of both positions.

Miami mover

Ricardo Teixeira, the disgraced former FIFA executive committee member for Brazil exposed for taking bribes from the body’s now defunct former marketing partners ISL, has retired to Miami.

FIFA insiders do not expect him to return to Brazil because he would face questioning on a variety of corruption issues involving millions of pounds. Teixeira’s successor on the FIFA ExCo, Marco Polo del Nero, has had his home raided by Brazilian Police investigating alleged links with a criminal organisation.

Newcastle owner Mike Ashley plans to rename Ibrox: CHARLES SALE

Sports Direct Arena Mk II! Ashley in bid to rename Rangers' iconic Ibrox stadium

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UPDATED:

22:46 GMT, 28 November 2012

Newcastle owner Mike Ashley is understood to be in negotiations with Rangers for naming rights to the Glasgow club’s iconic Ibrox Stadium.

The proposed deal would lead to one of football’s most famous stadiums, which opened in 1899, being renamed the Sports Direct Arena to promote Ashley’s sports retail empire.

Rangers have been exploring image rights deals since the Charles Green-led consortium took over the troubled club last June, shortly before they were demoted to the Third Division.

What's in a name: Mike Ashley is in talks over the naming rights of Ibrox

What's in a name: Mike Ashley is in talks over the naming rights of Ibrox

What's in a name: Mike Ashley is in talks over the naming rights of Ibrox

However, any move to rename the stadium is certain to anger many Rangers fans, even given the club’s financial plight.

Indeed, many would never acknowledge Ibrox being called anything else.

Ashley caused fury on Tyneside a year ago by renaming Newcastle’s own historic St James’ Park as the Sports Direct Arena, to showcase the branding opportunities to potential naming rights partners.

But Newcastle reverted back to St James’ Park last month in a bid to appease growing supporter concern about another re-naming —to the Wonga Arena — after a new 32million shirt sponsorship deal was signed with the controversial short-term loan company who charge huge interest.

Now, despite that setback, the opportunity to have his company name on an even more world-renowned football venue greatly appeals to Ashley, who is expanding his Sports Direct business in Scotland.

Something to tell us

Former Brazil captain Zico announced
his resignation as coach of Iraq following a contract dispute, just
after he shared a conference panel with England manager Roy Hodgson at
the Soccerex conference in Rio, which discussed international football.

Exit: Zico has quit as manager of Iraq following a contract dispute

Exit: Zico has quit as manager of Iraq following a contract dispute

Trash room talking

The peace talks between Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck and the 16 elite referees following the false Mark Clattenburg racism allegations took place in a meeting room in the budget Hampton by Hilton hotel wing of St George’s Park.

However, the officials each have luxury rooms in the alternative upmarket Hilton accommodation at SGP during their regular training camps. These have moved from Warwick University, where the referees had to double up in basic student rooms.

Rad deal

Ronnie Radford’s iconic 1972 winning goal for Hereford against Newcastle is such an FA Cup staple that Conference sponsors Blue Square Bet are pledging to give the non-League club 500 for every fan who finds the top corner of the net in a recreation of the Radford strike taking place at Edgar Street tomorrow.

Stadium solution close

The future of the Olympic Stadium will become clearer on Wednesday when West Ham are expected to be finally named as preferred bidders following a legacy process branded a ‘farce’ by UK Athletics chairman Ed Warner.

There is optimism a solution can at last be reached in the financial wrangling over who pays what for transforming a 500million track-and-field arena into a multi-sports stadium that could cost a further 200m.

Up for grabs: West Ham set to be named preferred Olympic Stadium bidders

Up for grabs: West Ham set to be named preferred Olympic Stadium bidders

Negotiations now surround only the final 20m to 30m of the spend with the Government hopeful the London Legacy Development Corporation, plus West Ham and Newham Council, will contribute more — along with Whitehall — to make the numbers stack up.

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Charles Sale: Call this reintegration, KP After rejoining England, flash star leaves team-mates behind to upgrade at five-star hotel in India
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Charles Sale: Games success helps the healing between FIFA and FA
21/11/12

Charles Sale: Richards causes ructions at the FA
21/11/12

Charles Sale: Premier League's TV deal bonanza continues as tender on course to reach 5bn after Indonesia and New Zealand sign up
20/11/12

VIEW FULL ARCHIVE

Woman's touch

Heather Rabbatts, the first woman and mixed-race member of the FA board, has emerged as a contender to succeed David Bernstein as FA chairman next May.

And Rabbatts’ chances are improved by the other FA independent director Roger Devlin ruling himself out by being on the nominations panel.

Football League chairman Greg Clarke is another being linked with the FA job as well as the Premier League chairmanship, although London 2012 vice-chairman Sir Keith Mills could have his pick of both positions.

Miami mover

Ricardo Teixeira, the disgraced former FIFA executive committee member for Brazil exposed for taking bribes from the body’s now defunct former marketing partners ISL, has retired to Miami.

FIFA insiders do not expect him to return to Brazil because he would face questioning on a variety of corruption issues involving millions of pounds. Teixeira’s successor on the FIFA ExCo, Marco Polo del Nero, has had his home raided by Brazilian Police investigating alleged links with a criminal organisation.

Harry Redknapp Ukraine manager"s job: Ex-Spurs boss says he is "serious" about Ukraine post as his advisors head to Kiev

EXCLUSIVE: Bring on Redknapp v Roy… Harry says he is 'serious' about Ukraine job with his advisors in Kiev for talks

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UPDATED:

10:53 GMT, 21 November 2012

Harry Redknapp has confirmed his advisors are today in talks with the Ukrainian FA over him becoming the new manager of their national team.

It is a move which would offer Redknapp the chance to
shatter Roy Hodgson's World Cup dream – six months after being
overlooked for the England job. England face Ukraine in a potentially crucial tie next September in Kiev.

Speaking exclusively to Sportsmail today, Redknapp said: 'It's a fantastic job. I found out about it a couple of weeks ago when they got in touch with my advisors. I am serious about it.

Crunch clash: Roy Hodgson, manager of England, could fave Harry Redknapp, who is in talks over the vacant Ukraine managerial positiion, next year in a crucial World Cup qualifier

Crunch clash: Roy Hodgson, manager of England, could fave Harry Redknapp, who is in talks over the vacant Ukraine managerial positiion, next year in a crucial World Cup qualifier

'They are an up and coming football
country with some very good young players, some great teams like
Shakhtar and some great stadiums.

'I will talk to them and see if we can sort something out. I'm definitely interested, without a doubt.'

Paul Stretford, Redknapp's agent, is in Ukraine today talking to their FA on Redknapp's behalf.

Hodgson, the man who was appointed
England boss in the face of popular opinion – with many wanting former
Tottenham manager Redknapp in the post – has admitted even he was
shocked to beat Redknapp to the job.

‘As soon as Fabio’s position became
vacant the papers had a clear idea about who the man replacing him would
be,’ Hodgson said. ‘One name was cropping up more and more. So I didn’t
expect the call.

'I remember it distinctly – I was
driving back to London on Saturday night, and my son had just flown home
from America that evening. Then the FA phoned, saying they wanted to
meet me.

'The West Brom chairman had
deliberately kept it quiet, until after the game against Aston Villa,
because he didn’t want my concentration to be affected.’

Old foes: England faced Ukraine for the second time this year in September

Old foes: England faced Ukraine for the second time this year in September

Both the Ukrainian FA and Redknapp's
representatives confirmed that an approach had been made, with talks now
expected to take place to discuss what sources said would be an
extremely lucrative offer to the former Tottenham manager.

Eastern promise: Paul Stretford, the agent Redknapp shares with Wayne Rooney, is in Kiev for talks

Eastern promise: Paul Stretford, the agent Redknapp shares with Wayne Rooney, is in Kiev for talks

Hodgson's team are making hard work
of their campaign to reach the 2014 finals in Brazil. They have dropped
four points from four qualifiers and the prospect of Redknapp delivering
a potentially fatal blow in Ukraine next September will fill the FA
with dread.

It would be quite an act of revenge,
even if the prospect of such an outcome may deter Redknapp from
accepting the offer given his sense of patriotism.

The Ukrainian football federation declared their interest after a meeting yesterday.

A statement said they had taken 'the
decision to begin talks with Redknapp's representatives relating to him
working in the post of chief coach'.

Mikhail Fomenko, of the UFF, added:
'He has a lot of experience, coaching talent and knows how to motivate
footballers. In whatever team he led Redknapp very quickly improved the
quality of the play and achieved significant progress.

'Today he is an expert in the game and one of the best English coaches.'

Educated morning: England manager Roy Hodgson spoke at the Oxford Union yesterday

Educated morning: England manager Roy Hodgson spoke at the Oxford Union yesterday

In a statement issued on Tuesday
night, Redknapp's agent Paul Stretford said: 'I can confirm we have been
approached by the Ukrainian FA who are keen to talk to us about the
possibility of Harry becoming the next manager of the national team.'

The Ukrainians have been without a
manager since Oleh Blokhin quit after a 1-1 draw at Wembley in September
to take control at Dynamo Kiev.

The road to Rio…

World Cup Group H

Remaining fixtures

March 21: San Marino v England;
March 25: Montenegro v England; September 5: England v Moldova;
September 9: Ukraine v England; October 10: England v Montenegro;
October 14: England v Poland.