Fergie salivates over his crown jewel Ronaldo as United go to Fulham
Friday, February 29, 2008
Fergie salivates over his crown jewel Ronaldo as United go to Fulham
Hong Kong Authorities approve Beckham's LA Galaxy exhibition match
LA Galaxy had previously announced they would play an exhibition match on March 9 at Hong Kong Stadium, subject to approval from the city's football authority. However this has now changed with the authorities approving the proposal. "The application was approved," Hong Kong Football Association Sunny Leung said. "We have all been making every last-minute effort to have them come, we were very keen to have them here."
LA Galaxy will arrive in Hong Kong on March 6 and hold a football clinic for youngsters and then play a South China team on March 9.
Thursday, February 28, 2008
Crouch and Mascherano have differing reasons to dither on their contract
Peter Crouch and Javier Mascherano are both taking an inordinate length
of time to sign new deals at Anfield. Speculation that Crouch may invoke
the new rules that allow players to buy themselves out of their contract
at a value much less than they are worth on the open market, has forced
Liverpool to open talks with him about renewing his contract. Meanwhile
Javier Mascherano despite all the positive noises to the contrary from
both sides has still not signed a long term deal with Liverpool. Could
it be both are waiting until the summer when hopefully Benitez's and
indeed Liverpool's future is settled?
Crouch will clearly be hoping the manager is moved on and he can stay
at Liverpool under a new regime. Despite his goals record for Liverpool,
his number of starts has dwindled to the point where its' clear Benitez
no longer considers him one of his senior players. Benitez going is no
guarantee he will stay but its the best he's got, and given Arsenal,
Chelsea and Manchester United are not likely to be interested in him,
biding his time at Liverpool is his best chance of staying at one of the
Mascherano meanwhile may well be hoping the opposite, that is that
Benitez stays. He clearly has a lot of respect for Benitez after he
rescued him from his Upton Park nightmare, and gave him a start in the
Champions League final. Mascherano will be hoping Benitez is given the
go-ahead to remain at Anfield whoever the eventual owners become. That
said if he opts to leave their will be no shortage of takers for one of
Liverpool's few world/international class performers.
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Reports of Gillett to sell his Liverpool share to DIC, while Hicks denies exit talk
Reports are mounting that George Gillett is all set to sell his 50% stake in Liverpool to Dubai International Capital (DIC). His relationship with Tom Hicks is beyond repair, and he is now looking for a way out of the doomed partnership. A specialist team of bankers and solicitors have been put in place by the investment arm of the Dubai government as it awaits permission to study the club's books, which it is understood will be granted shortly.
DIC are reportedly willing to purchase his share, but not in a deal that will leave Hicks in charge of Liverpool. They are looking to make immediate decisions on the Liverpool's future post the deal, and will look to either dilute or purchase some of Hick's share so they will have majority control of the club.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Rumours turning to action as DIC close to securing takeover of Liverpool
Tom Hicks Jnr rounded on by angry Liverpool fans
In what was either a naive bridge building exercise or a crass ignorance of local feeling, Tom Hicks Jnr visited the Sandon pub in Liverpool after the Middlesbrough game, and was shortly after forced to leave as an angry mob formed. The Sandon public house is where Liverpool's hard-core support congregates before and after games, and is the birthplace of the football club.
Hicks claimed he wanted to have some direct talks with Liverpool fans and that was certainly what he got. As the news spread around the pub, the atmosphere got worse and eventually his bodyguards rushed him from the pub into a waiting people carrier. As he left he was swilled with lager and spat on by angry fans.
Speaking to the local paper the Liverpool Echo, he said: "I went to Sandon with some friends because I have wanted to go for quite some time to see the birthplace of the club.I also wanted the opportunity to have a direct talk with some of the supporters. I respect that some patrons have major disagreement with us, but that comes with the territory. I did have several constructive conversations in my short visit and look forward to following up with them next time I am in Liverpool."
This nasty episode will have left the Hicks family in no doubt as to the feeling of Liverpool's fans, and how far they have to go to win them over.
Sunday, February 24, 2008
Liverpool say Alonso going nowhere as the rumours continue
Barcelona boss Rijkaard not giving up catching Real Madrid in the race for the Spanish League
Footy focus can see signs of it not being all over for Barcelona in the race for the Spanish title. Real Madrid are showing signs of stuttering, while Barcelona are looking better by the week.
Speculation mounts that Jose Mourinho is to take over at Barcelona in the summer
Barcelona is the latest in a long line of clubs linked with Jose Mourinho. Footy Focus reckons his ultimate destination is not the Nou Camp, but Anfield! Not saying how we know!
Friday, February 22, 2008
Henry confident on Barcelona prospects
Thierry Henry is confident Barcelona are finding their form at the business end of the season.He said "At last we players are all together - but we've not won anything yet," he warned.
"We're in the semi-finals of the Copa del Rey, looking good in the Champions League, and five points behind Real Madrid. We're in a good moment of form, and if we're here as a full group, so much the better."
Barcelona take on Levante on Sunday a few hours before Real Madrid entertain Getafe at the Bernabeu. This means that for a few short hours at least Barcelona can cut the gap at the top of the table to a mere two points.
It's all turning into a fascinating end of the season in Spain and Footy Focus has a gut feel that Barcelona might just catch Madrid and take the title. Barcelona are finding form at just the right time, while Madrid are starting to stutter a bit!
Posted by TheAvaGo Group at 2:45 AM
Thursday, February 21, 2008
Vanessa's at it again and the male population goes wild
Vanessa Hudgens career is set to go into freefall (well depends which way you look at it) as she has reportedly made a sex-tape with boyfriend Zac Efron.
In a charming Christmas scene she is alledgedly sitting under the tree saying to the camera "I want Santa to come up my chimney because I’ve been a good little girl this year.” Then promptly gets down to business. Quality!
Vanessa Hudgens has either been a shameless seeker of notoriety or a very misguided and naive girl. Either way if true this looks like going down in the annals of internet celebrity sex-tape history!
The Bhoys get a UEFA Champions League lesson from Barcelona, as Messi's class tells
Celtic had twice taken the lead through Jan Vennegoor and Barry Robson, but their efforts were cancelled out by Barcelona's Messi and Thierry Henry respectively. Overall Barcelona richly deserved their win as they displayed a footballing masterclass at times. Celtic at varying stages, could not cope with Barcelona's rapid passing and posession football and scored their first goal very much against the run of play. Indeed, after regaining the lead for the second time, Barcelona very quickly scored to get back in the game. Just when the Scottish champions looked set to hold on for a draw, Argentina star Messi grabbed a late winner for Barcelona to inflict Celtic's first Champions League home defeat since 2004.
Overall Barcelona deserved the victory, and are now firm favourites to advance to the last sixteen and indeed will be one of the favourites to lift the UEFA Champions League trophy.
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Beckham backs Gullit to improve LA Galaxy in MLS
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Arsenal's Fabregas on planet fluff as he wishes for Barcelona's Eto'o
Barcelona will not be happy to hear Cesc Fabregas's latest words of wisdom. He has urged Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger to try and land Barcelona star Samuel Eto'o.
Eto'o gives under pressure Rijkaard his backing as the Parkhead hothouse looms
Samuel Eto'o gave beleagured Barcelona boss Frank Rijkaard a major boost today ahead of their UEFA Champions League game with Celtic, by giving him his unqualified backing, and dismissing the dutchman's critics. In an outburst against the media frenzy to replace Barcelona's manager, Eto'o derided those calling for his head;
Monday, February 18, 2008
Carragher asks his team mates are they ready in Liverpool's hour of need
Liverpool vs Inter Milan, UEFA Champions League: Liverpool's Jamie Carragher demanded a response from his team-mates in tomorrow's Champions League first-leg clash at home against Inter Milan, in the wake of the FA Cup fifth round debacle against Barnsley on Saturday.
Liverpool are now desperate to show that they ready for what is potentially the last big game of their season, against the Serie A defending champions and current leaders. Carragher admits Liverpool will have to substantially improve as the Champions League is now their only chance of a trophy.
“There'll be a great atmosphere against Inter,” he said on the club’s official website. "The fans will be up for it and it's up to us to match that. I don't think that beating Inter would make up for losing the FA Cup tie the way we did, but it would give everyone a boost if we can get a result. We're devastated. It's a major, major blow to go out of the FA Cup to a lower league team at Anfield. We realise that's not good enough."
Footy Focus prediction: Champions League heartbreak for Liverpool
Sunday, February 17, 2008
Hicks softening to DIC Liverpool bid, as Gillett is expected to be first to go
David Beckham back in training with LA Galaxy
Rafa made to look a Yorkshire pudding as Barnsley produce a sucker punch
Saturday, February 16, 2008
Ronaldo's absence opens door for Drogba move
AC Milan are ready to break the bank for Chelsea striker Didier Drogba to replace the injured Ronaldo.
Gazzetta dello Sport is reporting that Ronaldo’s knee injury has sparked Milan to urgently seek a new centre-forward for next season, and Chelsea's Drogba tops the list.
Drogba has continually talked of a move away from Chelsea, particularly to Barcelona, but that won’t put off Milan president Silvio Berlusconi, who is prepared to do whatever it takes to land Drogba from Chelsea.
Ronaldo underwent surgery in Paris on Thursday after rupturing tendons in his left knee during Wednesday's 1-1 draw against Livorno and is expected to be sidelined for up to a year.
Reports Sissoko to be on the bench again
Friday, February 15, 2008
FA Cup fifth round: Liverpool vs Barnsley- Torres out, Hypia and Arbeloa back in
Alonso determined to make up for lost time at Liverpool
Sources in New York have confirmed that a £460million deal with DIC - the Dubai government's financial arm and headed by Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum s now close to being sealed, with Liverpool set to change hands twice in a little over twelve months.
Despite leaving Liverpool with a £350m debt, they will be able to walk away having made a substantial profit. Liverpool's fans will be overjoyed at the news and on tenterhooks until it comes off. The Yanks are pretty well loathed by all Liverpool fans, so news of an impending exit will be joyfully recieved!
Villa circling as Liverpool forced into Crouch contract talks
The Mirror is reporting Liverpool have opened contract talks with Crouch, as there is strong interest from Aston Villa. Benitez is at last set to turn to the England striker to save their season, and give him a prolonged run in the side. It looks like at last, someone from his coaching staff has made him see sense!
Gangly Crouch only has 16 months left on his £40,000-a-week deal at Anfield, and shrewd Villa boss Martin O'Neill is planning a £9million summer swoop for the gangly star. That can only mean one thing then - O'Neill isn't planning on being at Anfield next year!
Thursday, February 14, 2008
Vidic vs Adebayor the key battle for Arsenal in the big show-down
Adebayor is big, strong and powerful with great heading ability, but he's also technically excellent and is very quick. Vidic though is a no-nonsense defender, who is also no slouch. It will make for a fascinating game - we can't wait!
Footy focus prediction? Manchester United to shade this one and ruin the Arsenal treble dream.
Goldenballs losing his touch as the Yanks get critical?
David Beckham and his American odyssey might just be running into a bit of trouble. After cancelling an interview with TJ Simers, who was California Sportswriter of the Year in 2000, Beckham has come in for some sustained criticism.
"Huge billboards will go up soon showing him with his chest bare: and isn't it always? - and his briefs appearing a size too small. You'd think a guy with as much money as he's got could find underwear that fit. "
Cristiano Ronaldo thinks he can get even better
"I am enjoying my career at the moment as we are playing some nice football. But I need to say thanks to my team-mates. They help me a lot.
"They give me great passes and give me confidence. I appreciate that. Maybe I score more goals than my colleagues but they also help the team."
Sunday, February 10, 2008
Owen back in the groove but King Kev's revolution awaits
Newcastle, despite going ahead through a fourth minute Michael Owen goal were soundly beaten at Villa Park yesterday, with John Carew getting his first Villa hat-trick. Aston Villa vs Newcastle is always as entertaining game, though not often as one sided as this game was.
As the Premier League has continued with its usual hyperbole, and Keegan has been heralded back to Tyneside as the Messiah, Martin O'Neill has been quietly working his magic at Villa Park. From a steady start to the season, Aston Villa are now comfortably ensconced in the race for fourth place and who would bet against them getting it?
Footy Focus thinks King Kev can't wait for the season to end and get busy in the transfer market!
Saturday, February 9, 2008
Rafa believing in miracles as Liverpool's away game nemesis run starts
Friday, February 8, 2008
Fans aghast as Premier League proposes playing matches abroad
Other commentators have said there is cause to believe the Premier League will make much more than the 100 million being touted. The 10 extra games would be sold separately possibly pitting ITV and the BBC against each other. Paul Zwillenberg, a media specialist with OC&C, is quoted in the Times as saying “It’s a brilliant move commercially because of the importance so many international broadcasters attach to Premier League games.”Its clearly an inevitable but very sad consequence of the 'global game', however it remains to be seen whether FIFA or UEFA will even consider such a radical plan.
Reports Liverpool to pay 12 million for Real Zaragoza's Sergio Garcia
Thursday, February 7, 2008
England's initial disjointed display must have alarmed Capello and Switzerland almost grabbed an opener when a Hakan Yakin free-kick was knocked on Senderos, with Eggimann to heading wide. If they had scored it would not have been a surprise at that stage. However England grabbed a surprisingly good opening goal just before half time. Gerrard found Joe Cole who provided a cut-back for Jenas to grab his first England goal.
After 58 minutes, Switzerland levelled, with a great pass from Tranquillo Barnetta catching Rio Ferdinand out as the substitute Eren Derdiyok got in front of him to finish past David James. It took only four minutes for England to regain the lead, with Gerrard taking a Rooney pass, to pass inside for Wright-Phillips to finish in an open goal.
Overall an average performance from England, that got better as the game went on. The initial struggles with the 4-1-4-1 formation wore off as they settled into the game. Still lots to ponder for Mr Capello if he is to make England competitive with the best the world has to offer.
Posted by TheAvaGo Group at 2:02 AM
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
Barca seal deal for long time Liverpool and Tottenham target Ezequiel Garay
Garay is one of the highest rated young defenders in Europe, and a move to one of Europes leading clubs had long been mooted.
More speculation of an unsettled Xabi Alonso
King Kev sets his sights on Dirk Kuyt in the summer
Liverpool & Benitez after Cole?
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
Benjani finally completes his move to Manchester City in a restructured deal
Benjani is the third highest scorer in the Premier League this season, and had been left in a state of flux, as the transfer deadline passed on Thursday. Manchester City had been trying to pull out of the original deal after a previously unknown knee injury came to light during his medical examination. However with the Premier league's encouragement, they moved to renegotiate the agreement with Portsmouth and will finalise the signing today. It is understood they will make a smaller down-payment and a larger proportion of the fee will depend on the number of appearances he makes for Manchester City.
Mascherano confident deal for a permanent stay to be sorted within the week
When finally completed it will be a major boost for the Liverpool's beleaguered Benitez, and will add to the growing stability at Anfield as Liverpool try to get their season back on track.
Sunday, February 3, 2008
Crouch exposes Rafa's folly, as Liverpool overcome Sunderland
Roy Keane afterwards was disappointed not to have got at least one penalty, particularly when Carragher blocked a shot unintentionally with his arm.
Saturday, February 2, 2008
Arsenal march on, Manchester United rescue a point and Chelsea falter
Southgate confident deal for Alves will remain despite AZ Alkmaar dispute
Gardner joins the Toffee's chase for fourth place
Rooney told to get in the box by Fergie, as United go to Spurs
Sir Alex Ferguson has told Wayne Rooney to stop dropping back into midfield and get into the box more. In reference to Wednesdays 2-0 win over Portsmouth, Ferguson said "Wayne worked too hard on Wednesday,[That]cost him the opportunity to get goals. He got involved in a lot of the build-up play and we said to him after the game that he didn't need to expend so much energy dropping back into midfield all the time."
Fans aim to take control as Share Liverpool FC launched
Taylor went onto say that in Germany and Spain most top-level football clubs were not for sale as they were owned by many thousands of "member fans" arguing that "The Champions League has been won on six occasions in the last 15 years by clubs owned and run in such a way," he said. The most prominent club ran in this way is Barcelona, which won the Champions League in 2006, and is owned by its fan-members, of which there are 156,000 members.
It's a fascinating idea and one which just might come off. If Barcelona and Real Madrid are ran in this way, there is no reason why English clubs can't do the same.
Friday, February 1, 2008
Benjani deal stalls as Manchester City pull out at the last minute
Lee in from the cold to help McAllister in the Leeds hot-seat
Lee is highly regarded within the game, and has also been part of the England setup in recent years.
Portsmouth - Benjani too late for City, while Defoe signs in
We don't know what the fee was for Defoe, but we are sure he will prove to be an excellent buy for Harry Redknapp.
Sky Sports News reports Mascherano has signed for Liverpool
If true this will delight Rafa Benitez and give the club a bit of a lift after all the recent turmoil.