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Thursday, July 14, 2011

Manchester City hit back at Arsenal in war of words over sponsorship deal - MANU TV

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger
Concern: Wenger suspects City's Arab owners have indirectly bankrolled new stadium deal (APP)

The Blues have recently agreed a deal with Etihad Airways to sponsor the club's shirts and stadium for the next 10 years for a reported £400million, which dwarfs Arsenal’s agreement struck with Emirates in 2004.
The Gunners have a £90m deal over 15 years, and Wenger has raised an eyebrow over the nature of the gigantic new deal struck by his Abu Dhabi-owned Premier League rivals.
‘[Their deal] raises the real question about the credibility of the financial fair play,’ said Wenger.

‘They give us the message that they can get around it by doing what they want.
'The difficulty and the credibility of the financial fair play is at stake.

‘If financial fair play is to have a chance, the sponsorship has to be at the market price. It cannot be doubled, tripled or quadrupled. If they bring the rules in they have to be respected.’
City though, claim the reported £400m fee has been exaggerated, and that their deal with the Far East airline has not been inflated in order to get around Fifa FFP rules - describing Wenger's comments as ‘unfounded and regrettable’.
‘The financial details of the comprehensive agreement announced last week between Manchester City and Etihad Airways remain confidential and figures being speculated about are not accurate,’ said a City spokesman.

‘Manchester City is a pro-active member of the European Clubs Association and is working actively and with transparency with regard to financial fair play.

‘In light of these facts, recent comments about the partnership by some observers are unfounded and regrettable.’
Of all the Premier League teams aiming to bring their finances within Uefa's new rules, City arguably face the toughest task with a substantial wage bill driven by some of the country's top-paid stars - including captain Carlos Tevez and midfielders Yaya Toure and David Silva.

Valdes: 'Fabregas is excited about coming back to Barcelona'

Barcelona goalkeeper Victor Valdes has claimed that Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas is already "excited" about signing for Pep Guardiola's side.
Fabregas is embroiled in another long transfer saga involving his boyhood club Barca but they are still no closer to agreeing a fee with Arsenal for the 24-year-old.
Fabregas was not taken on the club's pre-season tour of Asia but manager Arsene Wenger insists it is because of a hamstring injury and that he is still confident of keeping the Spaniard in north London.
But now Valdes has claimed that the 2010 World Cup winner is already looking forward to returning to the Nou Camp.
"Cesc is excited about coming back here and I'd like that," the keeper said at the launch of his official website.
"His way of playing would mean he'd have no problems adapting and he'd bring a lot of quality."

21 year old Dane will be Arsenal’s next centre-back - MANU TV

Jorgensen may be Wenger's next choice of centre-back to play alongside VermaelenArsenal are ready to sign their next centre-back and the name will not ring clear with the majority of football fans as the Emirates side aim to bring in 21 year old FC Copenhagen defender Mathias Jørgensen in to partner Thomas Vermaelen.
The North London club have been linked with a host of centre-back’s this season including that of Gary Cahill, Christopher Samba and Per Mertesacker to name only three of them. It seems Wenger will stick to his word by keeping his philosophy right on cue and not investing heavily in the summer transfer window, but will continue to llok for bargains he believe will progress within the squad to make the team great again.
At 6ft 3in Jørgensen certainly has the size and athleticism to be “one of Wenger’s boys” and the defender already has five international caps to his name despite being so young and is nicknamed “Zanka”. Many will have hoped Wenger would have spent a lot of money on a centre-back this summer however that does not look to be the case, but with the progression of defender Koscielny last season, and Vermaelen to return from injury, these could be exciting times ahead for Arsenal.

Big Eck pushing to buy Parker and Vargas - MANU TV

Sunderland-West-Ham-Scott-Parker-Premier-League cropped
Aston Villa boss Alex McLeish is urging the club's owner Randy Lerner to bid £7million for Scott Parker - and also fancies Peru winger Juan Manuel Vargas.
Villa have enquired about West Ham midfielder Parker, who Upton Park chief David Sullivan is anxious to get off the wage bill either permanently or on loan .
However, they are yet to table a bid for the England international as boss McLeish also wants Wigan winger Charles N'Zogbia and Spurs right-back Alan Hutton.
McLeish - who will make Manchester City keeper Shay Given his first signing, on a three-year contract -  is having to juggle his modest resources as Ashley Young's £16m sale to Manchester United merely offset January's purchase of Sunderland striker Darren Bent.
With Stewart Downing seemingly bound for Liverpool after Villa accepted a bid of close to £20m last night, McLeish is considering moving for Fiorentina ace Vargas to play on the opposite flank to N'Zogbia.
The left-footed 27-year-old would cost £12m-£13m and is known for his dribbling, free-kicks and accurate crosses.
McLeish has a history of signing South American players, such as Mauro Zarate, Christian Benitez and Jean Beausejour, while at Birmingham.

Liverpool FC target Real Madrid striker as their big summer signing - LIYARI NEWS

Higuain could be made available if Real Madrid continue to buy forwardsLiverpool FC want to make one big surprise signing this summer and have earmarked Real Madrid and Argentina stiker Gonzalo Higuaín as the player to add some gloss to Anfield next season.
Whilst Jose Mourinho has claimed he will not be selling his main stars, the arrivals of numerous other players this summer at the Bernabeu will mean that players will look to move on if not guaranteed starting places. Mourinho has already been linked with a move for Manchester City’s Carlos Tevez as well as Brazlian teenage Neymar.
Although there have been reports that Real would be prepared to include Higuain in the Tevez deal, sources close to Footybunker claim the Spanish giants would be well within their limits to be able to purchase Tevez outright. Liverpool however want to make a statement of intent and although they cannot offer Higuain any European football for the coming season, the chance to join such an historic team with a completely fresh agenda would be something that would appeal to the 23 year old.
Liverpool realise that Higuain will not be sold cheaply and are looking to prepare a serious bid of at least £25m for the Argentine.

Dalglish eyes Chelsea striker -ESPN KARACHI

Kenny Dalglish is closely monitoring the situation of Chelsea youngster Daniel Sturridge with a view to making an approach for the striker.
Dalglish has been handed a sizeable transfer budget by Liverpool’s owner John Henry, but with it comes a remit to buy young and buy English where possible.
Sturridge certainly ticks those boxes laid down by Henry, but a move by Liverpool for the player would certainly raise a few eyebrows.
A transfer to Anfield would certainly appeal to Sturridge, who back in January indicated he would jump at the chance of playing for the club according to The Sun newspaper.
Sturridge who is also being tracked by Newcastle and Stoke, spent a large amount of time last season on loan to Bolton Wanderers, where he provided an impressive return of 8 goals in 12 appearances.
The England Under 21 international who moved to Stamford Bridge in 2009 on a four year deal from Manchester City, has found his first team opportunities limited at Chelsea. He is also thought not to be in the plans of newly installed manager Andre Villas-Boas.

Sneijder agrees terms with United - Mahajir News

Manchester United are close to completing Wesley Sneijder's £35million transfer.
United chief executive David Gill is believed to have agreed terms with representatives of the Inter Milan and Holland star, who will earn £190,000-a-week at Old Trafford.
New England Revolution 1-4 Man United: Reds reserves shine in the States  
Sneijder was forced to compromise on his initial wage demands of £250,000-a-week, but an agreement has been struck and the move is close to completion.

United owners the Glazers have sanctioned the £35m fee for the 27-year-old World Cup star as a replacement for Paul Scholes, who retired at the end of last season.
Chief executive David Gill met his counterparts at Inter in Zurich yesterday, at a scheduled meeting of the European Club Association.
It is understood Gill made clear United's willingness to pay £35m for Sneijder, with an official bid expected to be lodged within the next 48 hours.
Although Inter appeared reluctant to sell, they have accepted they cannot turn down such a lucrative bid and are ready to accept United's offer.
The capture of Sneijder will take United's summer spending to £85m, following the combined £50m outlay on Ashley Young, David De Gea and Phil Jones.
Gill was hopeful of concluding the Sneijder deal before he flies out to the US tomorrow to join up with the United squad on their pre-season tour.
Sir Alex Ferguson's significant transfer spending is proof of his desire to keep United ahead of the pack next term, and maintain their success on the back of last season's title triumph.
"Absolutely, that's what we are always trying to achive," said Fergie.
"The great thing about United, and what I try to achieve, is to have a foundation. And the foundation is strong in Manchester United, very strong.
"Our youth coaches are very good, and the Academy, excellent coaches we have there and given the regulations they work under they do a great job.
"It's always been a part of the club to bring young players through from the youth team.
"I was going to bring Paul Pogba along, to be honest with you, but it would then mean huge numbers, you know, I think when we all meet up, finally, in New York.
"Javier Hernandez joins us there and then we'll have 29 players or something like that, which is a lot on tour, but in some way we'll have to cope."

USA TODAY: McIlroy begins bid for 2 straight major title

 By Yahya Harappa

SANDWICH, England — Coming off a dominant win at Congressional, Rory McIlroy is favored to make it two straight major titles in the British Open.
Of course, the weather along the English coast could have a major impact on the U.S. Open champion.
Punishing gusts whipped across Royal St. George's during the practice rounds, and the forecast called for McIlroy to be playing in the worst of the wind over the first two days.
American Jerry Kelly got the tournament started with a drive right down the middle shortly after sunrise Thursday, playing in a light breeze with a sprinkling of rain. He wound up making bogey, but at least that was better than his start at this same course eight years ago.
Kelly began the last Open at Royal St. George's with an 11 on his way to an 86. This time, he failed to take advantage of his opening shot, running his approach though the back of the green and then needing three putts to get down.
The early leaders at 1 under included 51-year-old Mark Calcavecchia, France's Gregory Havret and Sweden's Fredrik Jacobson.
McIlroy, the 22-year-old from Northern Ireland, captured his first major title with a record-breaking performance in America last month. He blew away the field by eight strokes, perhaps signaling the start of a new era in a sport that's been dominated by Tiger Woods.
The injury plagued Woods is missing his second straight major because an ailing leg. Into the void stepped McIlroy, who won over the crowds with his joyful style.
"He plays golf with a real flair and a real charisma, and I think fans are drawn to that," Phil Mickelson said. "He plays with this youthful exuberance, and it's fun to watch and see somebody play golf like that and really enjoy it."
McIlroy thoroughly enjoyed himself at Congressional, setting a scoring record at 16 under. The performance showed real resilience, given the way he blew up on the final day of the Masters to squander a four-stroke lead.
"He played beautifully, obviously, and ended up winning," Mickelson said. "But it's not just how he won with his great play, but also the way he interacts with people, the way he draws people to him."
McIlroy was scheduled to tee off at midmorning with South Africa's Ernie Els, a three-time major winner, and young American Rickie Fowler.
Top-ranked Luke Donald was in the group right behind McIlroy, while defending champion Louis Oosthuizen had an afternoon start time.
Copyright 2011 The Associated Press of Pakistan. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

ICC published task force report without our consent: PCB

Lahore: The Pakistan Cricket Board has accused International Cricket Council of rejecting its request not to release or publish the report of the ICC special task force on Pakistan cricket.

A senior official of the cricket board told PTI that the PCB had conveyed to the ICC that it had its reservations over some aspects of the task force report before the ICC meetings held in Hong Kong last month.

"We had made it clear to the ICC chief executive that the report should not be released or published until we have had a proper opportunity to study it and submit our impression about it. But the ICC rejected our request and said that since it had been signed by the task force members it was official document and had to be published on the ICC website and released as well," the official said.

The official negated the impression that the ICC took the PCB into confidence about the final contents of the task force report, which has become a bone of contention between the PCB and ICC.

However, ICC chief executive, Haroon Lorgat claimed that the report was sent to the Chief Operating Officer of the PCB, Subhan Ahmad for vetting and observations before it was finally released.

But Ahmad clarified that Lorgat had mailed him the report before it was signed by the task force members and its release at the ICC meetings.

"It was for my eyes only and I conveyed to the ICC next day that the report contained issues and we had our views and observations on some of the recommendations made by the task force on Pakistan cricket," Ahmad said.

"I was told by the ICC CEO that we could give our observations in writing once it was official and signed by the task force members," Ahmad added.

He also recalled that even before the ICC executive council meeting in Hong Kong the PCB Chief Ijaz Butt had asked the ICC officials to not discuss the report and not publish it as the PCB had issues with it and wanted to first give their observations before it was made an official document.

"We were told that since it was signed by the members and was ready it would be published by the ICC and we can then give our observations which we have done today," he said. "The fact is that we had made our reservations clear about the report before it was released and also pointed towards some of the points made in it," he added.

The PCB in its detailed response sent to the ICC on Wednesday described the report as containing factual errors, redundant and superfluous.

Lorgat said he had not seen the PCB response as yet but everyone had to realise that the purpose was to help Pakistan cricket.

"As far as the factual errors are concerned, yes there might be some but at the same time we had shown a draft copy of the report to the chief operating officer of the board, Subhan Ahmad to check it out before we gave it final shape and submitted it," he claimed in an interview.