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Southampton appoint World Cup winner Terry Paine as honorary president

Club legend, World Cup winner: Paine appointed Southampton's honorary president

PUBLISHED:

12:37 GMT, 26 December 2012

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UPDATED:

12:37 GMT, 26 December 2012

Southampton have today revealed their record appearance-maker Terry Paine is to become their honorary president.

Paine was a member of England's 1966 World Cup-winning squad and played 815 times for Saints between 1957 and 1974.

He has now been appointed honorary president and will take up the role on January 1, with a remit to act as an ambassador for Saints both at home and abroad.

Hero: Terry Paine (right) is Southampton's record appearance holder

Hero: Terry Paine (right) is Southampton's record appearance holder

The 73-year-old, who lives in South Africa, will be presented with his new title by the family of ex-Southampton manager Ted Bates on New Year's Day before the Arsenal game.

'It is a great honour for me to be named honorary president of Southampton Football Club,' Paine told the club's official website.

World Cup winner: Paine (right) was part of England's victorious 1966 team

World Cup winner: Paine (right) was part of England's victorious 1966 team

Executive chairman Nicola Cortese, who was recently accused of not wanting 'anything to do with anything that happened before he turned up' by club stalwart Matthew Le Tissier, said: 'I can think of no one more deserving of this prestigious title than Terry Paine.'

Steven Gerrard, Ryan Giggs and now Lionel Messi: Sportsmail tribute to one-club men

As Messi and Xavi join Gerrard, Giggs, Armfield and Le Tissier, we pay tribute to football's one-club men

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UPDATED:

15:46 GMT, 18 December 2012

Barcelona stars Lionel Messi, Xavi and Carles Puyol have signed contract extensions that will keep them at the Nou Camp for the rest of their glittering careers.

They are the ultimate one-club men, having progressed from Barca’s fabled La Masia Academy.

Barcelona boy: Lionel Messi has signed a new deal with the Catalans - Xavi and Carles Puyol are also staying

Barcelona boy: Lionel Messi has signed a new deal with the Catalans – Xavi and Carles Puyol are also staying

Messi, Xavi and Puyol, though, are not alone in dedicating their careers to a single team.

Here Sportsmail pays tribute to 10 men who epitomise football loyalty.

TONY ADAMS (Arsenal 1983 – 2002)

How Arsenal could do with someone like him now. A no-nonsense defender, who inspired all around him, Adams became club captain in his early 20s and led the Gunners through one of the greatest periods in their history. In total he played 668 games and collected 13 major honours.

Top Gunner: Tony Adams will always be a legend to the Arsenal supporters

Top Gunner: Tony Adams will always be a legend to the Arsenal supporters

RYAN GIGGS (Manchester United 1991 – present)

Some day in the future, Giggs will call time on the most remarkable career and when he goes, the Barclays Premier League will have a gap that cannot be filled. He has made 921 appearances, scored 165 goals and won all there is to win twice over. The moniker ‘legend’ fits easily alongside him.

PAUL SCHOLES (Manchester United 1995 – present)

He
has been described by many, including Xavi, as the finest English
midfielder of the last two decades and it is hard to pick holes in that
argument. Blessed with wonderful passing and a keen eye for goal,
Scholes has eschewed the trappings of fame. All he has wanted to do is
play for United.

Old heads: Ryan Giggs (left) and Paul Scholes are still turning it on for Manchester United

Old heads: Ryan Giggs (left) and Paul Scholes are still turning it on for Manchester United

MATTHEW LE TISSIER (Southampton 1986 – 2002)

If
ever there was a talent who did not get his full rewards, it was Le
Tissier. A mercurial playmaker, who scored phenomenal goals and barely
missed a penalty, he kept Southampton in the Premier League almost
single-handedly at times. But he never won a major honour and was only
capped eight times by England.

A real Saint: Matt Le Tissier spent his entire playing career with Southampton

A real Saint: Matt Le Tissier spent his entire playing career with Southampton

JAMIE CARRAGHER (Liverpool 1997 – present)

It wasn’t easy for Carragher when he first broke into Liverpool’s team as a teenager but, through sheer force of will and talent, he has had an outstanding career. You don’t play for Liverpool 716 times if you haven’t got something special and the defender has earned every accolade.

STEVEN GERRARD (Liverpool 1998 – present)

Though it is true Gerrard twice came close to leaving Liverpool, his commitment to the club and efforts through three decades are indisputable. He has just passed 600 appearances at Anfield and boasts a trophy cabinet in keeping with his standing as one of the best midfielders of his generation.

Conquering Europe: Jamie Carragher (left) and Steven Gerrard won the Champions League in 2005

Conquering Europe: Jamie Carragher (left) and Steven Gerrard won the Champions League in 2005

LEON OSMAN (Everton 2002 – present)

Osman might not have a burgeoning trophy cabinet nor is he a name that will be discussed frequently up and down the land but he represents old-fashioned values and Everton are all the better for it. He, along with Tony Hibbert, fought his way through the youth ranks and kept trying to force his way into David Moyes’ team. A decade’s efforts were rewarded last month when he was capped by England.

Sticking with the Toffees: Leon Osman has worked his way through the ranks at Goodison Park

Sticking with the Toffees: Leon Osman has worked his way through the ranks at Goodison Park

DEREK FAZACKERLEY (Blackburn Rovers 1969 – 1987)

If his coaching career has been nomadic – see spells at Newcastle, Manchester City, Birmingham, Huddersfield and England, amongst others – Fazackerley’s playing days were spent solely at Ewood Park. He made a record-breaking 671 appearances for Blackburn and that total will never be passed.

JIMMY ARMFIELD (Blackpool 1954 – 1971)

To many he will be the softly-spoken expert analyst on Radio Five Live but as a player Armfield was the archetypal one-club man. Loyal, professional, conscientious and talented, Armfield was a classy right-back who made 627 appearances for Blackpool. He also won the World Cup in 1966.

I do like to be beside the seaside: Jimmy Armfield is Blackpool through and through

I do like to be beside the seaside: Jimmy Armfield is Blackpool through and through

And one from abroad we can't ignore… PAOLO MALDINI (AC Milan 1985 – 2009)

From the moment Maldini made his debut as a 16-year-old against Udinese,
he was destined for greatness. His name will stand the test of time, a
defender who oozed class, skill and dedication. His 902 appearances for Il
Rossoneri and five Champions League winners’ medals are extraordinary
statistics.

Milan man: Paolo Maldini (right) won the European Cup five times with the Italian giants

Milan man: Paolo Maldini (right) won the European Cup five times with the Italian giants

Adel Taarabt goal was excellent, but Matthew Le Tissier scored goals like that regularly

Why the fuss over Taarabt Le Tissier performed magic like that week in, week out for Saints

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UPDATED:

16:19 GMT, 17 December 2012

There is a lot about Adel Taarabt which brings back memories of the heyday of Matt Le Tissier.

He's languid, a touch lazy, and must be incredibly frustrating for teammates to play with – that is until he produces moments of audacious genius such as his finish on Saturday.

It began with a burst of energy as he brought the ball under control, a sublime dummy and then that instinctive perfectly placed finish.

Scroll down for video…

Magic moment: Taarabt scored a stunner for QPR in their first win of the season

Magic moment: Taarabt scored a stunner for QPR in their first win of the season

*Click here to watch Taarabt's stunning goal against Fulham

Yes, it was all very Le Tissier. But to
truly bare comparisons to the South Coast legend Taarabt is going to
have to repeat his wonder goal time and again for a series of seasons.

For that is what Le Tiss did – practically single-handedly keeping Saints in the top flight for a decade – and he dominated the goal of the season charts, particularly in 1993 and 1994.

I can’t hear the song Life of Riley by the Lightening Seeds (which was Match of the Day's goal of the month music in the mid-nineties) without remembering Le Tiss's flick up and volley from a free kick against Wimbledon, the loop over two players heads and then a delicate finish against Newcastle, a swerving strike against Forest, and, my favourite, the 35 yard belter against Blackburn.

And there were many more, most notably a volley against Arsenal in the final game at The Dell.

On top of that he had a remarkable record from the penalty spot – only failing to score once in 48 attempts.

Master: Le Tissier regularly scored cracking goals for Southampton

Master: Le Tissier regularly scored cracking goals for Southampton

He seemed to have a hand in almost every goal Saints scored. There were times his talent drove fans to despair. For someone who could see and supply passes only a handful of others could match, he hung on to the ball for an eternity.

Some would call his never-ending flicks, tricks and dummies mesmerising, others would sigh at why he didn’t just play the simple pass.

When his inspiration went missing and Saints fell behind, his sloth-like demeanour was frustrating.

But Le Tissier scored 210 goals for Southampton – all of them in the top flight, and for a club which rarely finished in the upper half of the table.
Only when Taarabt can match this, will his talents ever truly match the man Saints fans call Le God.

VIDEO: Le Tiss stars in Goal of the Season competition

Fulham striker Dimitar Berbatov ambling star lights up Premier League

As ambling Berbatov lights up the Premier League, here's 10 more strolling stars who bossed the big stage

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UPDATED:

14:32 GMT, 11 December 2012

Dimitar Berbatov has two speeds. Slow and slower.

The Fulham striker is a throwback to the days when strollers were all the rage, playing the game at their speed and a style of play that was more pipe and slippers than blood and thunder.

There aren’t many left in this modern age of speed and dynamism, but Berbatov is in imperious form and showing there is still a place for his ambling style.

Scroll down for video

Berbatov signed for Tottenham in 2006 from German club Bayer Leverkusen and he scored 46 goals for Spurs,

Berbatov signed for Tottenham in 2006 from German club Bayer Leverkusen and he scored 46 goals for Spurs, including this penalty against Chelsea in the 2008 Carling Cup Final, before moving to Old Trafford in 2008

The Bulgarian signed for Manchester United on transfer deadline day in 2008 for a fee of 30million but he fell down the pecking order,

The Bulgarian signed for Manchester United on transfer deadline day in 2008 for a fee of 30million but he eventually fell down the pecking order, despite occasional flashes of brilliance such as this overhead kick against Liverpool

Berbatov has scored five goals this season since moving to Martin Jol's Fulham

Berbatov has scored five goals this season since moving to Martin Jol's Fulham

On a bad day, it would be described as being lazy, but former Manchester United striker Berbatov is having plenty of good days.

He’s a luxury player on top of his
game and he got us thinking of football’s other wandering minstrels. So
here are ten we have loved; let us know if you think of any others in
the comments below.

Matt Le Tissier

Criticised for playing a pass and then standing to admire it, he was good at both. Southampton’s ultimate stroller never left the South Coast, which implied he lacked ambition. But he is revered by Saints fans for his loyalty – like Sir Trevor Brooking at West Ham.

One club men are rare these days, but Le Tissier’s record of 162 league goals in 443 games suggests he was more than passing trend. He could pay and he could stroll.

Le Tissier spent his entire career at Southampton, scoring 162 league goals during his 16 years at the club

Le Tissier spent his entire career at Southampton, scoring 162 league goals during his 16 years at the club

The Guernsey-born forward retired in 2002 having made just eight appearances for England

The Guernsey-born forward retired in 2002 having made just eight appearances for England

Le Tissier's wonder goal against Newcastle in 1993

George Graham

The man they called stroller became a title-winning manager at Arsenal who earned a reputation for his discipline and Seargent Major style. It was at odds with his reputation as a player.

Journalist James Mossop once wrote of Graham’s playing style: ‘Stroller was a famous Scottish footballer who acquired that name through his gentle touch – a tender caressing of the ball as he stroked it around the pitches of the world with an art of his own.’

Graham’s playing career took him strolling from Aston Villa to Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester United, Portsmouth, Crystal Palace and, finally, to the California Surf.

Graham scored 60 goals during his six years with Arsenal and later went on to manage the Gunners

Graham scored 60 goals during his six years with Arsenal and later went on to manage the Gunners

He was part of Arsenal's double-winning team of 1971, a feat the Gunners repeated in 1998 and 2002

He was part of Arsenal's first ever double-winning team in 1971, a feat the Gunners repeated in 1998 and 2002

Stan Bowles

He’s best summed up in his own words. I was renowned for being arrogant. I wasn't really. I just knew what I was doing on the pitch. When I was on my game I felt unstoppable and I let them know.

I'd go past a fella trying to tackle me, look back at him and say, “Come on, get up, I'll let you have another go”’.

Stan had flair and talent and took his skills from Manchester City to Bury, Crewe, Calrilse, QPr – where he made his name and played in 315 league games – Nottingham Forest, Leyton Orient and Brentford.

He played only five times for England and was similar to Le Tissier in that he was mistrusted by his peers.

Bowles spent seven years at QPR and was part of arguably their greatest ever team when they finished runners-up in 1975/76

Bowles spent seven years at QPR and was part of arguably their greatest ever team when they finished runners-up in 1975/76

What a player: Bowles with model Jenny Clarke in 1976

What a player: Bowles with model Jenny Clarke in 1976

Glenn Hoddle

A brilliant playmaker for Spurs and Monaco, Hoddle was a bit
more than a stroller, but – like Berbatov – he could be annoyingly frustrating
and fade in and out of games.

Hoddle could chip the ball beautifully and scored
a series of sensational goals, played out on Match of the Day, including one
chip of Watford goalkeeper Steve Sherwood that became one of his most famous
strikes.

He later managed England and appeared on Top of the Pops. But the less
said about that, the better.

Hoddle spent 12 years at Spurs and was part of the 1981 FA Cup winning team

Hoddle spent 12 years at Spurs and was part of the 1981 FA Cup winning team

Glenn Hoddle and Chris Waddle on Top of the Pops

Jan Molby

He was brilliant inside the centre circle… and didn’t seem to go much further than that. He was the Berbatov of the midfield, the Berbatov of the 80s.

But if you look at the video below, you will see he could travel too – with a stunning run the length of the field and a screamer of a finish.

Maybe it’s this run that took so much out of him that he didn’t move much after it. Played over 200 league games for Liverpool before moving to Swansea, where he also managed. Also had spells at Hull and Kidderminster.

Molby joined Liverpool in 1984 and scored 44 league goals in his 12-year spell at Anfield

Molby joined Liverpool in 1984 and he scored 44 league goals in his 12-year spell at Anfield

John Sheridan

Leeds and Republic of Ireland midfielder, who could pass and stroll with the best of them. Showed the best form of his career at Leeds and Sheffield Wednesday in a career that took him strolling around to Manchester City, Forest, Birmingham, Bolton, Doncaster and Oldham too.

Sheridan also played 34 times for his country. He has also managed Oldham and Chesterfield.

Sheridan spent seven years at Sheffield Wednesday and scored a rocket against Manchester United in the 1991 League Cup Final

Sheridan spent seven years at Sheffield Wednesday and scored a rocket against Manchester United in the 1991 League Cup Final

Sheridan's winner in the 1991 League Cup Final

Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Sweden’s favourite stroller, who recently destroyed England with four goals including his sensational propeller kick. He plays when he wants… and sometimes if he wants, he can really play.

We all know the CV: he’s strolled from Sweden to Holland to Italy to Spain, back to Italy and now to France and has wandered around (and produced explosive skills) for Malmo, Ajax, Juve, Inter, Barca, Milan and PSG .

Ibrahimovic has played for some of Europe's top clubs including Juventus, Internazionale, Barcelona, Milan and now Paris Saint Germain

Ibrahimovic has played for some of Europe's top clubs including Juventus, Internazionale, Barcelona, Milan and now Paris Saint Germain

Zlatan has scored 39 goals for Sweden in 85 caps including the overhead kick from 40 yards against England in November

Zlatan has scored 39 goals for Sweden in 85 caps including the overhead kick from 40 yards against England in November

Liam Brady

The brilliant Arsenal No7 was more than a stroller, but he could stroll. So we included him in our list. Brady played for four Italian clubs, including Juventus and Inter and they loved his style of play.

We did too. He finished his career at West Ham, playing 89 league games there. He strolled a lot at West Ham as his career drew to a close.

He then tried management at Celtic and Brighton, but that didn’t work out. He tried to be an agent, but that didn’t work out, either.

Brady scored 43 league goals in his seven years with the Gunners before moving to Juventus in 1980

Brady scored 43 league goals in his seven years with the Gunners before moving to Juventus in 1980

Adel Taarabt

QPR’s modern-day Stan Bowles. Taarabt has all the skills, but sometimes he doesn’t show them all the time.

When QPR were in the Championship, Jamie Redknapp once wrote of him: ‘Get along to see Adel Taarabt of QPR; there isn't a better footballer outside the Barclays Premier League.'

He sometimes needs a ball of his own, which is why Spurs let him go, but the Moroccan is a magician. Where does he play Everywhere! His positional discipline is not the best, but he has dazzling skills.

Moroccan Taarabt joined QPR in 2009 on loan from Tottenham

Moroccan Taarabt joined QPR in 2009 on loan from Tottenham and he was instrumental in Rangers' promotion season before moving to Loftus Road on a permanent deal in 2010

Gordan Cowans

We can hear the complaints. How can you have Gordon Cowans on the same list as Zlatan Well, Gordon could stroll too and was good at it for Aston Villa and England.

Graham Taylor once picked him for England, ahead of Paul Gascoigne.

But that didn’t end well. Cowans was a playmaker and could slow down the game with his passing skill during his career which saw him take his mullet hairstyle to Villa (three times!), Bari, Derby, Wolves, Sheffield United, Bradford, Stockport and Burnley.

Cowans had three spells at Aston Villa and he also played for Blackburn, Wolves, Derby and Sheffield United

Cowans had three spells at Aston Villa and he also played for Blackburn, Wolves, Derby and Sheffield United

Matt Le Tissier: Dennis Bergkamp to Wayne Rooney – top 10 Premier League flair players

Matt Le Tissier: From Bergkamp to Rooney, my all-time top 10 Premier League flair stars

PUBLISHED:

11:46 GMT, 7 December 2012

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UPDATED:

11:46 GMT, 7 December 2012

Matt Le Tissier

Matt Le Tissier is one of the Premier League greats. A master dribbler and scorer of outrageous goals, the former Southampton forward gained a reputation as one of the most skilful and creative players in the league.

But who would Le Tissier choose in his all-time top 10 of Premier League flair players

Dennis Bergkamp

His first touch and his vision were superb and he could also score a decent 25-yarder from time to time. He lit up the Premier League with some of his goals.

I was on the receiving end of his first two strikes for Arsenal at Highbury and his first two came against Southampton. They were both pretty special and he never really looked back after that.

He had a bit of a dodgy start but all he had to was play against us and we set him on his way. One of them was a 25-yarder that hit the inside of the post and I had the privilege to stand behind it and watch and the other was a finish from just inside the box.

With his first touch he just used to put the ball where he wanted to and he always gave himself so much time and space.

Off the mark: Bergkamp celebrates after scoring his first goal for Arsenal against Southampton

Off the mark: Bergkamp celebrates after scoring his first goal for Arsenal against Southampton

Gianfranco Zola

The little maestro has to be up there. He was the consummate pro. He had such a low centre of gravity so defenders had trouble with him twisting and turning and he took a mean free kick. He was a credit to the profession to be honest and a really top bloke.

He definitely scored a few against us over the years. He scored a lot of great free kicks and his flick at the near post from a corner stands out.

I had a few goes at that flick on the training ground but I don't think I ever tried it in a match. I don't think I got in that position where I was that close to the goal too often to be honest.

Thumbs up: Zola went on to become one of Chelsea's best players

Thumbs up: Zola went on to become one of Chelsea's best players

Eric Cantona

Cantona has to be on the list. He was arrogant, but you can get away with it when you're putting in the performances and he almost transformed Manchester United into a championship winning team on his own to be honest.

He scored against us at The Dell with a lovely chip over Tim Flowers from the corner of the box and stood there in that arrogant pose that he did. I remember almost hating and then going, “You know what That was a great bit of skill.”

French fancy: Cantona helped transform Manchester United into a championship winning team

French fancy: Cantona helped transform Manchester United into a championship winning team

Thierry Henry

The way Wenger transformed him from a wide man to the most feared centre forward in the Premier League was quite remarkable. I think he scored his first goal against Southampton too – there seems to be a theme here. But he was an awesome talent in his pomp.

You'd watch him and he'd just glide across the top of the pitch. It was like his feet hardly touched the grass. Even without trying he would just drift past players as if they were cart horses.

The flick up and volley against United was a special goal. I liked a flick too but I don't think I ever tried it with my back to goal.

Off and running: Henry scored his first goal for Arsenal against Southampton in 1999

Off and running: Henry scored his first goal for Arsenal against Southampton in 1999

Michael Owen

As a young boy Owen had plenty of flair. Obviously it's not quite worked out for him later in his career but he was awesome at Liverpool.

His natural confidence and exuberance as an 18-year-old, who then went on to score that goal in the World Cup, to do that as a teenager was pretty special.

It's a shame that injuries curtailed him because we'd have been talking about Michael Owen in a very different light if he'd stayed injury free throughout his career. I was a bit jealous of his pace – it often crossed my mind how much I'd have been worth if I was quick.

Curtailed by injury: Owen was blessed with flair - although it hasn't quite worked out for him

Curtailed by injury: Owen was blessed with flair – although it hasn't quite worked out for him

Le Tiss on the spot

When Sportsmail picked Ray
Stewart as the greatest penalty taker of all yesterday, it sparked a
fierce debate. So why not ask a man who knew a thing or two about taking
(and scoring) them…

Matthew Le Tissier

'I remember Ray Stewart taking penalties when I
was a kid. He used to rip the back of the net off. I'd be quite happy to
put my life in Ray Stewart's hands with a penalty to be honest. I had
confidence in my own but did have one blip. But I don't remember Ray
missing too many. He would smash his straight down the middle and go for
power. I went for accuracy and the side foot. Two very different
techniques but it just goes to show there's no one perfect way to take a
penalty.'

Paolo Di Canio

The mad Italian is another one who has to be on this list and even now he's still entertaining us as a manager with his interviews and his antics. If you're talking about flair players you can't leave him out.

His scissor kick volley was a special bit of skill and you almost applaud him for having the confidence to try it in the first place. There are so many players who would have attempted to do that and they'd have had no idea where the ball would end up – back in their own half, over the stand, anywhere. It was just a brilliant piece of skill.

He was controversial but you have to have an incredible amount of confidence to be one of these flair players. You have to have something in you that doesn't mind failing if it doesn't come off. All the best players will fail but still try it the next week.

Cristiano Ronaldo

You have to include him. He was very special in what he did at
Manchester United, the goal scoring feats and everything, and he's
continued that at Real Madrid.

It took him a little while to settle and I didn't get to play against
him but you could see with the skills that he had, if he could be
coached into knowing when to release the ball and become a tad more
unselfish he was always going to be a very good player.

Italian job: Di Canio's scissor kick volley against Wimbledon is one of the greatest goals in the Premier League

Italian job: Di Canio's scissor kick volley against Wimbledon is one of the greatest goals in the Premier League

With his pace and skill he just needed help to know not to overdo it and Sir Alex did that with him. With his free kicks he's experimented and used the new balls to his advantage. He's taken that ball and found a new way of striking it that's going to give goalkeepers problems and he's invented that on his own, so fair play to him, there's not many players who can say that.

Star man: Ronaldo was a special player for Manchester United

Star man: Ronaldo was a special player for Manchester United

David Ginola

You can't leave David out. In his pomp at Newcastle he was awesome. Even at Spurs he had some good times but when he was in Keegan's team he was superb. He was a genius at what he did.

John Beresford is my friend who played left back behind him and he never really got much help but it was entertaining to watch. David was one of the best dribblers ever, he had the pace but he was strong and well built so didn't have to just pass players, he could use his strength to get past them as well. And he had a decent shot with both feet, which not too many people have got.

Star: Ginola was a class act for Newcastle

Star: Ginola was a class act for Newcastle

David Silva

Though he's not been on form recently, last season he was outstanding. He looks so comfortable on the ball and is very difficult to mark. He's got a wand of a left foot on him and he's one of those players who can see a pass through the eye of a needle – he sees passes that a lot of people on the pitch don't.

He's been brought up in that Spanish passing culture and you can see it with other Spaniards like Santi Cazorla at Arsenal so it's nice to be getting those kind of players coming into the Premier League, it's very pleasing on the eye.

Silva service: The Manchester City star has lit up the Premier League

Silva service: The Manchester City star has lit up the Premier League

Wayne Rooney

You have to say Rooney is one of the best. He goes through dips in form like everybody else but he burst onto the scene as a young lad and had a big price tag to live up to when he went to Manchester United. But he's certainly given them value for money with the goals that he's scored for them.

When he came on for his Everton debut and scored against Arsenal, to do what he did against not only Arsenal but England's No 1 goalkeeper, you probably thought this boy's got something that might go a long way and he hasn't disappointed.

Roo beauty: The Manchester United striker hasn't disappointed after bursting on to the scene as a 16-year-old

Roo beauty: The Manchester United striker hasn't disappointed after bursting on to the scene as a 16-year-old

Matt Le Tissier was speaking at the opening of Decathlon’s new store in Southampton. As the world’s biggest sports retailer, Decathlon is a gateway to sport and is committed to putting sporting activity back at the heart of the nation’s local communities by making it accessible to all. To find out more about how your family can try a new sport go to www.decathlon.co.uk

Matt Le Tissier

Soccer Saturday tour scrapped – Charlie Sale

Soccer Saturday tour scrapped… but no-one will say why

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UPDATED:

23:08 GMT, 13 November 2012

A theatre tour of Sky Sports’ cult programme Soccer Saturday, presented by Jeff Stelling, has been cancelled in mysterious circumstances.

Tickets for the four dates in Liverpool this week and Newcastle later this month as well as aborted shows at Wembley and Birmingham had been selling well after successful performances in Southampton and Bournemouth featuring Stelling and regular pundits Charlie Nicholas, Phil Thompson, Chris Kamara, Matt Le Tissier and Paul Merson.

But all the remaining tour dates were scrapped with no plans for them to be re-scheduled and refunds paid out to those who had already booked seats for the question-and-answer football chat.

Stopped: Soccer Saturday's theatre tour has been halted

Stopped: Soccer Saturday's theatre tour has been halted

More from Charles Sale…

Sports Agenda Extra: We needed troops to step in yet G4S could WIN gong for 2012 Olympics work
05/11/12

Charles Sale: Silent Stan finally makes it back into the Arsenal stands
24/10/12

Charles Sale: Man United line up whopping 1bn Nike extension to boost the coffers
23/10/12

Charles Sale: Premier League loses its fizz for sponsor Lucozade
22/10/12

Charles Sale: Rooney's second book flop leaves publishes unsure over future titles
21/10/12

Charles Sale: No purple patch for quirky Mancini as Manchester City boss ditches unlucky colour
19/10/12

Charles Sale: Why the blazers ousted FA chairman Bernstein
18/10/12

Charles Sale: No extra time for FA chief Bernstein's regime
17/10/12

VIEW FULL ARCHIVE

Neither Sky nor the roadshow promoter Mike Osman would comment on why the project had been axed with the expectation of forthcoming legal action.

Sky denied the termination was due to executives’ concern that they had no involvement or control over entertainer Osman using the Soccer Saturday brand for his commercial enterprise. However, that might explain why Stelling did not promote the theatre tour during his TV appearances as Osman had wanted.

FA Trio hunting for Bernstein's replacement

The hunt for an FA chairman to succeed David Bernstein, who has to stand down next May after his 70th birthday, is being led by board trio Roger Burden, who heads the national game, Middlesbrough’s Keith Lamb and independent director Roger Devlin.

But Burden’s involvement does not necessarily guarantee his unfailing support for the next chairman. The former Cheltenham & Gloucester Building Society chief was also on the nominations panel that chose Bernstein, yet Burden famously said Bernstein had had a humour bypass in a pivotal speech supposedly endorsing an extension to his term of office before the FA council voted against the board proposal.

BBC gain from Fox failure

The fall-out from Fox Sports losing their Premier League rights in the United States to NBC will help the BBC in contract talks with Match of the Day presenter Gary Lineker, who could have used Fox’s supposed interest in him hosting their PL coverage as a bargaining chip in his BBC talks. But the US rights from next season went to NBC for triple the money.

Benefit: The BBC might find it easier to keep hold of Gary Lineker after Fox lost the bidding war

Benefit: The BBC might find it easier to keep hold of Gary Lineker after Fox lost the bidding war

Blat to normal

The relationships between the FA and FIFA, which reached an all-time low after the 2018 World Cup vote debacle, have improved to the extent that the red carpet will be rolled out for Sepp Blatter when he visits St George’s Park next Wednesday.

FA chairman David Bernstein and his possible successor David Sheepshanks, chairman of St George’s Park, will be in Burton to greet the FIFA president. Next Tuesday, Blatter has invited Fabrice Muamba and Bolton chairman Phil Gartside for lunch in Zurich, where Muamba’s yet-to-be-decided role with FIFA will be discussed.

Leagues meet match

The Premier League and Football League have suffered a major financial setback with their joint venture company, Football DataCo, forbidden from charging media outlets, bookmakers and pools firms for publishing their fixtures.

The Appeals Court upheld the European Court verdict of March 1 that DataCo, which also involves the Scottish leagues, did not have the right to charge copyright fees for fixtures.

They're for everyone: The Premier League and Football DataCo lost in the battle to take copyright fees for fixtures

They're for everyone: The Premier League and Football DataCo lost in the battle to take copyright fees for fixtures

The decision, which will deny the football bodies hundreds of thousands of pounds, also ordered that any fixture fees paid since March be refunded as well as DataCo paying both sides legal costs of around 1.7million.

Quiet about Clive

Rugby World Cup-winning coach Sir Clive Woodward remains the elephant in the room at Twickenham, judging by PR advice given to stadium personnel before they were interviewed by Sky about England’s history in the build-up to the Fiji game. It is understood the RFU spin was that any memories of the 2003 triumph should stress the collective achievement rather than Sir Clive’s.

Adam Lallana could not believe England call

England want me I just don't believe it! Saint Lallana stunned by Hodgson's call

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UPDATED:

20:25 GMT, 10 September 2012


Astonished: Adam Lallana

Astonished: Adam Lallana

Adam Lallana may not have believed club manager Nigel Adkins when he informed him of his England call-up, but he has been on Roy Hodgson’s mind for some time.

As a manager at Fulham and West Bromwich Albion, Hodgson would focus on scouting youngsters who were causing a stir in the Football League and there has been a hum of excitement around Lallana for a while.

He is a product of Southampton’s prolific academy and their 2005 FA Youth Cup runners-up team which also featured Theo Walcott, Gareth Bale, Leon Best and Nathan Dyer.

But his progress was checked when he was diagnosed with an irregular heartbeat at the age of 18 and told the necessary surgery could end his career. Thankfully, he was able to fulfil his potential at the top level.

‘I’ve seen him for a long time,’ said Hodgson, who was at St Mary’s this month to see Lallana excel against Manchester United in only his third top-flight appearance.

‘I followed him as a potential signing when I was at Fulham and West Brom. Southampton weren’t in the Premier League.

‘Now the whole world is aware of him because Southampton, though not getting the results, are making a reputation for themselves.

Dream come true: Lallana has been brought in as cover following injuries to John Terry, Ashley Cole and Theo Walcott, among others

Dream come true: Lallana has been brought in as cover following injuries to John Terry, Ashley Cole and Theo Walcott, among others

FRANCIS BENALI

The former Southampton captain says:

The first time I set eyes on Adam, I knew he would be a top player. He has thrived in every division he has played in for Southampton and now he has hit the ground running in the Premier League.

People will say he is only 5ft 9ins, but you only have to look at Barcelona to realise if you’re good enough, you’re big enough.

I was part of the same year group as Matt Le Tissier in the Saints academy and I see a lot of Matt in Adam. That’s the biggest compliments I can pay him.

‘I thought it was a good opportunity
to bring him in because Adam Johnson and Theo Walcott had left us. At
the moment, my knowledge of him is from way up in the stand, watching
him play.

‘It’s up to him to ensure next time I select him in front of someone else,’ added Hodgson.

Lallana is an elegant, attacking
midfielder with vision and poise. He has been developed by Adkins to
play in a wide role in a three-man strikeforce.

The 24-year-old has represented his
country through the youth ranks but was not expecting the call from the
Saints manager yesterday.

‘I didn’t think the gaffer was being
serious,’ said Lallana. ‘I was at home, about to head into the training
ground. I must have asked if he was having me on a dozen times. I’m
totally shocked, to be honest. To be called into the senior squad is
probably the proudest moment of my career so far.

‘It is every player’s dream. I’m
realistic in accepting I might not be that heavily involved, but the
fact I will be around such experienced players is something I am really
excited about. It reflects really well on the club. It shows just how
far Southampton have come.’

FIFA investigate Claus Lundekvam claims of Premier League betting scam

FIFA to investigate Lundekvam claims of widespread betting scam in Premier League

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UPDATED:

15:15 GMT, 11 July 2012

FIFA's chief investigator in England will look into claims by former Southampton skipper Claus Lundekvam that he, team-mates and opposing captains were involved in betting fraud.

In an interview in a Norwegian newspaper, Lundekvam said the players manipulated incidents such as the first throw-in for betting purposes.

And now football's world governing body have announced they will investigate the claims.

Claim: Claus Lundekvam says he and others were involved in betting fraud

Claim: Claus Lundekvam says he and others were involved in betting fraud

A statement said: 'FIFA is monitoring this issue and involved its chief investigator in England. Once all information is known it will be decided who is leading the investigations.'

Southampton legend Matthew Le Tissier has distanced himself from the claims that Saints players colluded with opposition players in a widespread betting scam.

THE ATTEMPTED SCAM

Matt Le Tissier lifted the lid on his part in an attempted betting scam 17 years ago in his autobiography Taking Le Tiss.

The former Southampton and England midfielder revealed he colluded with friends who placed a spread bet on the time of the first throw-in during a game against Wimbledon in 1995.

He planned to kick the ball into touch from the kick-off to beat bookies who were predicting it would take nearly a minute for it to go out

Le Tissier would have landed around 10,000 but team-mate Neil Shipperley, unaware of the bet, stopped the ball going out.

He admitted: “Spread betting had just started to be popular.

'I’d never have done anything that might have affected the outcome of the match, but I couldn’t see a problem with making a few quid on the first throw-in.

'The problem was Neil Shipperley knew nothing about the bet and headed it back. I charged around desperately trying to kick the ball out. We stood to lose a lot if it went much longer than 75 seconds.

'I had visions of guys coming to kneecap me. Eventually we got the ball out on 70 seconds. The neutral time meant we had neither won nor lost. I have never tried spread betting since.'

Former skipper Lundekvam claimed in an interview in his native Norway this week that he
used club staff to put big bets on incidents in games — like who would win the
first throw-in — then ensured they happened after conspiring with opposition
captains.

It followed Le Tissier's revelations in
his autobiography Taking Le Tiss that he colluded in a failed 10,000 betting
scam against Wimbledon in 1995.

Attempting to make money from a throw-in taking
place in the first minute, Le Tissier failed in his attempts to send the ball
out of touch after trying to make it look too convincing.

The pair spent six seasons together at The Dell but Le Tissier insisted he had not been involved in any other incidents.

He tweeted: 'aside
from the 1 incident mentioned in my book ive never been involved in any
betting scams and had no idea of claus lundekvams claims.'

Lundekvam admitted he had bet on his own games, that players
pooled hundreds of pounds and that the scam went on for years.

The 39-year-old,
who played for Saints between 1996 and 2008, said: ‘It’s not something I’m
proud of.

‘For a while we did this almost every week. We made a fair
bit of money.

‘The results were never on the agenda. That is something I
would never have done. We were professional competitors.

'We could make deals with the opposing captain about, for example,
betting on the first throw, the first corner, who started with the ball, a
yellow card or a penalty.

'Those were the sorts of thing we had influence over.’

Speaking out: Matthew Le Tissier denied involvement in Lundekvam's claims

Speaking out: Matthew Le Tissier denied involvement in Lundekvam's claims

Yet Lundekvam – who won 40 caps for his country – insisted
he had never influenced the result of a game, saying the activity was ‘fun’.

'Even though what we
did, of course, was illegal, it was just a fun thing.'

And the 39-year-old, who fell into drink and drug abuse
after his retirement in 2008, insists it was not just Saints players who were
breaking the law and FA rules.

Low point: Lundekvam fell into drink and drug abuse after his retirement

Low point: Lundekvam fell into drink and drug abuse after his retirement

‘I know it happened at other clubs as well. We footballers
live in a bubble.

'It was part of the lifestyle and the excitement.

'Whatever we
could bet on, we bet on,’ he said.

Claus Lundekvam Premier League betting scam denied by Matthew Le Tissier

Le Tissier denies Lundekvam claims as betting scam rocks Premier League

|

UPDATED:

12:26 GMT, 11 July 2012

Southampton legend Matthew Le Tissier has distanced himself from fresh claims that Saints players colluded with opposition players in a widespread betting scam.

Former Southampton skipper Claus Lundekvam claimed in an interview in his native Norway this week that he
used club staff to put big bets on incidents in games — like who would win the
first throw-in — then ensured they happened after conspiring with opposition
captains.

Claim: Claus Lundekvam says he and others were involved in betting fraud

Claim: Claus Lundekvam says he and others were involved in betting fraud

THE ATTEMPTED SCAM

Matt Le Tissier lifted the lid on his part in an attempted betting scam 17 years ago in his autobiography Taking Le Tiss.

The former Southampton and England midfielder revealed he colluded with friends who placed a spread bet on the time of the first throw-in during a game against Wimbledon in 1995.

He planned to kick the ball into touch from the kick-off to beat bookies who were predicting it would take nearly a minute for it to go out

Le Tissier would have landed around 10,000 but team-mate Neil Shipperley, unaware of the bet, stopped the ball going out.

He admitted: “Spread betting had just started to be popular.

'I’d never have done anything that might have affected the outcome of the match, but I couldn’t see a problem with making a few quid on the first throw-in.

'The problem was Neil Shipperley knew nothing about the bet and headed it back. I charged around desperately trying to kick the ball out. We stood to lose a lot if it went much longer than 75 seconds.

'I had visions of guys coming to kneecap me. Eventually we got the ball out on 70 seconds. The neutral time meant we had neither won nor lost. I have never tried spread betting since.'

It followed Lundekvam's former team-mate Matthew Le Tissier revealed in
his autobiography Taking Le Tiss that he colluded in a failed 10,000 betting
scam against Wimbledon in 1995.

Attempting to make money from a throw-in taking
place in the first minute, Le Tissier failed in his attempts to send the ball
out of touch after trying to make it look too convincing.

The pair spent six seasons together at The Dell but Le Tissier insisted he had been involved in any other incidents.

He tweeted: 'aside
from the 1 incident mentioned in my book ive never been involved in any
betting scams and had no idea of claus lundekvams claims.'

Lundekvam admitted he had bet on his own games, that players
pooled hundreds of pounds and that the scam went on for years.

The 39-year-old,
who played for Saints between 1996 and 2008, said: ‘It’s not something I’m
proud of.

‘For a while we did this almost every week. We made a fair
bit of money.

‘The results were never on the agenda. That is something I
would never have done. We were professional competitors.

'We could make deals with the opposing captain about, for example,
betting on the first throw, the first corner, who started with the ball, a
yellow card or a penalty.

'Those were the sorts of thing we had influence over.’

Speaking out: Matthew Le Tissier denied involvement in Lundekvam's claims

Speaking out: Matthew Le Tissier denied involvement in Lundekvam's claims

Yet Lundekvam – who won 40 caps for his country – insisted
he had never influenced the result of a game, saying the activity was ‘fun’.

'Even though what we
did, of course, was illegal, it was just a fun thing.'

And the 39-year-old, who fell into drink and drug abuse
after his retirement in 2008, insists it was not just Saints players who were
breaking the law and FA rules.

Low point: Lundekvam fell into drink and drug abuse after his retirement

Low point: Lundekvam fell into drink and drug abuse after his retirement

‘I know it happened at other clubs as well. We footballers
live in a bubble.

'It was part of the lifestyle and the excitement.

'Whatever we
could bet on, we bet on,’ he said.

Claus Lundekvam in Premier League betting fraud claim

We did it every week… Lundekvam alleges huge Premier League betting scam

|

UPDATED:

07:55 GMT, 11 July 2012

Former Southampton skipper Claus Lundekvam has claimed he,
team-mates and opposing captains were involved in betting fraud.

He alleged, in an interview in his native Norway, that he
used club staff to put big bets on incidents in games — like who would win the
first throw-in — then ensured they happened after conspiring with opposition
captains.

Claim: Claus Lundekvam says he and others were involved in betting fraud

Claim: Claus Lundekvam says he and others were involved in betting fraud

THE ATTEMPTED SCAM

Matt Le Tissier lifted the lid on his part in an attempted betting scam 17 years ago in his autobiography Taking Le Tiss.

The former Southampton and England midfielder revealed he colluded with friends who placed a spread bet on the time of the first throw-in during a game against Wimbledon in 1995.

He planned to kick the ball into touch from the kick-off to beat bookies who were predicting it would take nearly a minute for it to go out

Le Tissier would have landed around 10,000 but team-mate Neil Shipperley, unaware of the bet, stopped the ball going out.

He admitted: “Spread betting had just started to be popular.

'I’d never have done anything that might have affected the outcome of the match, but I couldn’t see a problem with making a few quid on the first throw-in.

'The problem was Neil Shipperley knew nothing about the bet and headed it back. I charged around desperately trying to kick the ball out. We stood to lose a lot if it went much longer than 75 seconds.

'I had visions of guys coming to kneecap me. Eventually we got the ball out on 70 seconds. The neutral time meant we had neither won nor lost. I have never tried spread betting since.'

Lundekvam admitted he bet on his own games, that players
pooled hundreds of pounds and that the scam went on for years.

The 39-year-old,
who played for Saints between 1996 and 2008, said: ‘It’s not something I’m
proud of.

‘For a while we did this almost every week. We made a fair
bit of money.

‘The results were never on the agenda. That is something I
would never have done. We were professional competitors.

'We could make deals with the opposing captain about, for example,
betting on the first throw, the first corner, who started with the ball, a
yellow card or a penalty.

'Those were the sorts of thing we had influence over.’

Yet Lundekvam – who won 40 caps for his country – insisted
he had never influenced the result of a game, saying the activity was ‘fun’.

'Even though what we
did, of course, was illegal, it was just a fun thing.'

And the 39-year-old, who fell into drink and drug abuse
after his retirement in 2008, insists it was not just Saints players who were
breaking the law and FA rules.

‘I know it happened at other clubs as well. We footballers
live in a bubble.

'It was part of the lifestyle and the excitement. Whatever we
could bet on, we bet on,’ he said.

Low point: Lundekvam fell into drink and drug abuse after his retirement

Low point: Lundekvam fell into drink and drug abuse after his retirement

Lundekvam's former team-mate Matthew Le Tissier revealed in
his autobiography Taking Le Tiss that he colluded in a failed 10,000 betting
scam against Wimbledon in 1995.

Attempting to make money from a throw-in taking
place in the first minute, Le Tissier failed in his attempts to send the ball
out of touch after trying to make it look too convincing.