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Football News: Review Of The Day 7th February 2018

Review Of The Day 7th February 2018
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Review of the Day

 

Heckingbottom Quits Barnsley For Leeds

Leeds United have paid half a million pounds to activate a release clause in the contract of Barnsley manager Paul Heckingbottom and appoint him as their new head coach. Heckingbottom had taken the Tykes to promotion into the Championship and then finished 14th in the division last season. It was exactly 2 years to the day since Heckingbottom had taken charge after previous boss Lee Johnson left to take over at Bristol City. Heckingbottom had only signed a new contract on Friday but Leeds moved quickly after dismissing Thomas Christiansen on Sunday. "The club are shocked at Paul Heckingbottom's desire to leave, having agreed a new contract last week following the completion of the transfer window, where the directors worked tirelessly along with Paul to secure their targets, resulting in a successful window," a Barnsley statement said. "This left the club optimistic in a turnaround in form and a strong end to the 2017-18 campaign as we battle to retain our position in the league. Until a new head coach is appointed, Paul Harsley will take caretaker charge. The board fully trusts him to lead the team." Heckingbottom has also taken his backroom team of first-team coach Jamie Clapham, head of sprots science Nathan Winder and first-team performance analyst Alex Bailey, with him to Elland Road.

 

Obiang's Season Is Over

West Ham United's season is being badly disrupted by injury by a number of injuries and now they are hit with news of Spanish midfielder Pedro Obiang's season-ending operation. The 25 year old has had an operation on his knee following an injury suffered during the defeat in the FA Cup at Wigan Athletic on 27th January. Gary Lewin said: "We are confident that he will return fit and strong in ample time for pre-season. He went to a specialist in Barcelona for the operation and he is in the best possible hands as the rehab process gets under way," he added. Obiang had suffered a tear to his medial collateral ligament.

 

Doubt Cast On Younes' Napoli Move

Ajax winger Amin Younes has already signed a pre-contract to join Napoli, the German even took a medical in Naples in January ahead of finalising the move before it was put on hold, reportedly because Younes wanted to be near his sick grandfather. Now Younes has stated he feels like an Ajax player and is not sure he will complete the move to Napoli in the summer. "I got up in the dressing room and explained to the squad that my transfer had fallen through," Younes explained to reporters in the Netherlands. "Certain things happened and now I'm back. This situation has nothing to do with Ajax. Now I'm here and I feel like an Ajax player."

 


Dortmund CEO Threatens Clear Out

Underperforming Borussia Dortmund players have been threatened with a clearout by CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke as the team's poor performances continue despite a win on Friday 3-2 against bottom club Koln. With Dortmund trailing Bundesliga leaders Bayern Munich by 19 points Watzke to Frankfurt newspaper FAZ: "We need a squad adjustment in the summer, things will be clearer after the second half of the season. Michael Zorc [Dortmund's director of sport] has the lead on this, he knows my opinion and expectation."

 

Rooney Aims For Management

Everton's Wayne Rooney has told Sky Sports that he intends to move into management when he hangs up his boots. "I would like to go into management," the forward said. "I have been involved in football my whole life. That is something I know. I have enjoyed tonight, and I am sure I will do a lot more work on television, but ultimately I want to go into management."

 

Jones Claims MLS Draw Was Rigged

In 2014 US international Jermaine Jones had signed with the MLS from Besiktas with New England Revolution and Chicago Fire both keen to take him on a 'designated player' contract. A blind draw was done to decide which of the two teams would get Jones. Now Jones has claimed on Twitter that the draw was rigged, a claim disputed by the president of the Revs.

 

Spelling Error Ended Rangers Career

Former Rangers star Ronald Waterreus has revealed that his exit was down to a mistake in a fax. Waterreus had arrived after an injury to number one keeper Stefan Klos saw the Scottish giants in need of a replacement the Dutch international was recruited and soon established himself as first choice. 18 months later he left to return to Holland with AZ Alkmaar after failing to agree a new contract. "Rangers sent me a contract offer by fax, but they had spelt my name wrong," Waterreus said in Voetbal Inside. "So I angrily sent them a fax in reply, telling them: 'If you can't even spell my name properly ...' They dutifully sent me another fax, which this time had my name spelt correctly. However, they still mispelt the name of my agent Kees ploegsma on it. So I said: 'I'm not talking with you any more! I knew that I was going to leave Rangers. I had given an interview back home that was a bit spiky, and it was translated into English. We then played at home to Motherwell, and I was roundly booed by my own fans. That is no fun when there are 48,000 of them!"

 

UEFA uphold Carvajal Suspension

UEFA have upheld the decision to suspend Dani Carvajal for deliberately picking up a booking, which will see him miss the first leg of Real Madrid's last-16 Champions League tie with PSG. Carvajal was shown a yellow card in the 90th minute for time wasting in Madrid's 6-0 group stage win over APOEL Nicosia in November. As it was the 3rd yellow the full back had received in this season's competition it ruled him out of the final group stage match but freed him from any possibility of being suspended if he picked up a booking in the last 16 stage. UEFA decided the player had breached Article 15 of its dsiciplinary regulations and now the appeal against the extended ban has been rejected. "The appeal lodged by Real Madrid CF has been dismissed and the UEFA CEDB's decision of December 7 is confirmed," a UEFA statement said. "Given that Carvajal did not participate in the match between Real Madrid CF and Borussia Dortmund played on December 6, 2017, the player still has to serve one UEFA competition match for which he would be otherwise eligible."

 

El-Hadji Diouf Considering Presidential Campaign

After a great former footballer in George Weah has become Liberian president a not-so-great footballer is thinking of following his lead by running for the presidency of Senegal. El-Hadji Diouf has said he has been inspired by Weah to make a presidential challenge in his home country. Personally, considering he is a moronic loudmouth on social media and is fond of picking fights, I would have thought Donald Trump was more of an inspiration for a man famously, and correctly, described as a "sewer rat". I fear for a world where Diouf is president.

 

Mahrez Absent Yet Again

Leicester City's wantaway winger Riyad Mahrez has once again skipped training, the 4th time in a week, as he continues to sulk following a deadline day transfer to Man City falling through. The Algerian has not been picked for the Foxes last two matches as he avoids training with his team.

 

Matuidi To Miss Spurs' Match

Juventus will be without one of their key players as midfielder Blaise Matuidi is to miss out on the Champions League last 16 match up with Tottenham Hotspur. According to manager Massimmino Allegri the French international has a muscular problem which rules him out of the game. They already have Paulo Dybala, Claudio Marchiso, Benedikt Howedes and Douglas Costa as injury doubts for the game before adding Matuidi to the injured list.

 

Pepsi Renew Champions League Sponsorship Deal

PepsiCo's partnership with UEFA Champions League and the UEFA Super Cup has been extended for a 3rd time. The latest deal will run until the end of the 2020-21 season.

 

Nolan Backs Moyes

With speculation rife that West Ham boss David Moyes will not get an extension to his short term contract in the summer, he has received the backing of a former Hammers captain. "It was a job which was always going to be tough after Slaven - he was a fan favourite who was then sacked, so whoever went in afterwards was always going to find it hard," said Nolan. "I thought David Moyes did fantastically well to turn it around and I think he will still keep them up, I think they've got enough quality. It's one of those things, when you move to a new stadium it's so tough and it takes time to bed in. It happened to Arsenal when they moved from Highbury to the Emirates and it's the same now with Tottenham at Wembley. At the minute I feel the fans are a bit discontent because they don't feel like it's home, but the team are fighting every week to try and do something. I speak to them most weeks. I really believe they'll be ok and that David Moyes is the right man for the job at the minute."

 

Koeman Takes Charge of Holland

The Netherlands have officially confirmed that former Everton manager Ronald Koeman has succeeded Dick Advocaat as head coach of their national side. With Holland having failed to qualify for the World Cup, the former Southampton boss will have a tough job on his hands resurrecting the fortunes of his country.

 

Fire Sign Katai

Major League Soccer's Chicago Fire have taken Serbian midfielder Aleksandar Katai on loan from Deportivo Alaves. The deal also includes an option to purchase Katai on a permanent deal. "Aleksandar should make our attack more diversified," stated Fire president and general manager Nelson Rodríguez. "He has the ability to turn a game on a single play whether it be off the dribble, with a pass or cross or even on set pieces. His desire to triumph should also fit well in our locker room."

Also in transfers former Watford midfielder Ben Watson, who was released by the Hornets in the January transfer window has joined Nottingham Forest.

Oldham Athletic have completed a deal to sign Christian Benteke's brother Jonathan until the end of the season. The 22 year old had been on the books at Palace until being released at the end of last season.

In the National League, Wrexham have bolstered their ranks in their push for promotion by signing former Middlesbrough forward Jonathan Franks. Franks had been a free agent.

Another brother on the move as Steve Kipre, the brother of Motherwell's Cedric, has signed for Clyde after a trial spell with the Scottish club.

 

Chelsea Set To Ban Fans Who Shame The Club

Last week Chelsea launched a 'Say No To Anti-Semitism' campaign only for their defeat at Watford to be marred by reports of anti-semitic chanting from their fans. Chelsea have immediately launched an investigation into the incident, in co-operation with Watford and the police, warning of bans for anyone found guilty. "Anti-Semitism has no place in our club, football or wider society," said a Chelsea statement. "Anyone found guilty of anti-Semitic language or behaviour will face action from the club, including bans, and will be asked to attend equality education courses. We welcome the fact that Chelsea fans have reported this behaviour, which shames our club."

 

Frosinone Gets Crowd-Funding

The world's only crowd-sourced funding platform for sports, Tifosy, has completed the 1.5m euros mini-bond financing of Serie B club Frosinone. Investors were given the chance to invest 500 euros per bond and receive 8% interest per annum, sort of. There is cash interest of 5% but the other 3% is to be paid in the form of credit with the club to spend on tickets or merchandise during the period of the bond. At the end of the bond's duration, investors will be repaid their initial investment. Bondholders also have their name engraved on the 'Wall of Fame' at the club's Stadio Benito Stirpe, as well as an invitation to the club's Christmas dinner. Tifosy founder and CEO Fausto Zanetton said: "Frosinone has shown other clubs a model that will completely transform the football landscape. Clubs and fans working together for a common goal can make a real difference to the sport we love. Clubs need to make their fans partners, not customers. I am proud to be involved in this historic initiative, launching the first mini bond in Italian football to help Frosinone Calcio create a home for the community."

 

Dani Alves In Goal For PSG

Paris Saint-Germain full back Dani Alves ended the cup tie with Sochaux in goal after Kevin Trapp was sent off towards the end of the game. With all the subs having been made earlier, Trapp fouled Sochaux striker Thomas Robinet outside of the box to earn his marching orders. Alves put himself forward to take the gloves and kept a clean sheet as PSG strolled through 4-1, the goal having been conceded prior to Alves stepping between the sticks.

 

Millwall Manager Calls Rochdale Fans A Disgrace

A sentence I never thought I would ever type would be anyone at Millwall complaining about other team's fans, however Neil Harris, the Millwall manager, has criticised the supporters of League One Rochdale. Volunteers had worked through the night to ensure the game could go ahead, after a frozen pitch threatened to see it called off, and Rochdale duly rewarded the volunteers with a 1-0 victory. However the story of the night could lead to trouble for the fans as a pitch invasion at the end saw Rochdale fans gather in front of the Millwall support and, in the words of Neil Harris, "goad" them. "I thought the Rochdale fans were a disgrace at the end," said Harris, who verbally confronted some of them on the pitch. "Our fans were goaded, it wasn't quite right. My players were treated very badly, and me and the staff were abused. As a football club, we have the stick pointed at us fairly often."

 

Accies To Sue RBS Over Vishing Fraud

Hamilton Academicals are set to sue Royal Bank of Scotland over failures in their security system that allowed fraudsters to clean out the club's bank account. Accies have accepted some responsibility on their part but believe RBS should accept 50% of the blame and pay them £400,000 to offset their losses. Police are currently investigating the incident last October, when phone scammers convinced a club employee to move cash into 26 accounts to 'prevent theft'. The first two payments of £40,000 and £70,000 were initially suspended by RBS's cyber security team but the Accies employee was convinced to ignore the warnings and continue. "I'm not holding RBS wholly responsible for this," said club chief executive Colin McGowan. "Hamilton Accies have to stand up and say: 'Yes, we are partially to blame here, our employee made a grave error in judgment.' I'm saying Hamilton Accies are at fault here. I think we're at fault for 50 per cent of it. And I believe the bank's failings were in their security and duty of care. You wouldn't need to be Sherlock Holmes to see something was wrong here. On day two, £655,000 went out with 20 transactions. These weren't challenged once. I've repeatedly asked the bank if they had better security on day one than on day two. They made no attempt whatsover to contact a second person, even though they've intervened twice, they suspected something was wrong. Since the club was formed in 1874, we've never made transactions like that. To write a cheque for our community programme, we need two signatories if it's over £1,500. And yet, over a period of 24 hours, a million pounds can be removed from our account. I'd have liked to have seen the bank check with a director if that was the case. That would have triggered all sorts of alarms in our place." The incident pushed Accies to the brink of administration and the sale of two of their key players in order to survive as Greg Docherty went to Rangers and Mikey Devlin headed to Aberdeen. The bank denies any failings on their part.

 

Alisson The Lionel Messi Of Goalkeepers

The former goalkeeping coach of AS Roma, Roberto Negrisolo, has warned clubs that the Brazilian keeper is worth more than 50m euros, as speculation swirls about his future. "Is Alisson worth €50m? Don't be silly, he's worth far more than that...I don't think many people have realised who Alisson is. This guy is a phenomenon. He is the Number One of Number Ones. He is the Messi of goalkeepers, because he has the same mentality as Messi. He is a goalkeeper who can mark an era," said Negrisolo. "There is absolutely no comparison with Gianluigi Donnarumma, because Alisson is extraordinary. The first time I saw him play, he wasn't yet on the Roma books. I watched him play for Brazil and he made an enormous impression on me. The way he behaves in the goal, he reminds me of Dino Zoff. I'd also compare him to Michel Preud-Homme, who had the class of someone born to be a goalkeeper. I know goalkeepers, that is my business, and I can assure you Alisson can be a guarantee for at least another 10 years. He's already a hero to the fans and Roma need to keep hold of him. Alisson is crucial off the field too, as you can see he has the mind of a Coach. Look at the way he moves and acts when the ball is in his hands and you'll understand." Having seen Alisson play, it is hard to argue with the assessment that this guy is truly a special player.

 

Peres Puts His Rome Future In Doubt

Another talent contracted to AS Rome is Bruno Peres, but his career is on a completely different trajectory to Alisson's since he joined Roma. While Alisson has gone from strength to strength and made himself undisputed number one in his position, Peres has gone from first choice to being a largely unused sub as his form vanished. However it got worse this weekend as he was dropped from the squad altogether after crashing his Lamborghini in a drunk-driving incident and could well be seeing his time in the Italian capital coming to an end.

 

Sarri's Future Holds The Key For Hysaj

Napoli right back Elseid Hysaj is considering his future at the Neapolitans according to his agent Mario Giufredi. "The next Napoli moves on this upcoming transfer window will depend on Sarri's status with the club," Giuffredi told Radio Crc. "It's clear that their focus is currently on winning the league title but let's see what happens in the coming months. Hysaj? We will first have to see what happens with Maurizio Sarri as I've said..."

 

Agent Claims Arsenal Interest In Juve Starlet

Juventus's young defender Daniele Rugani has been repeatedly linked in the media with Arsenal and now his agent has confirmed that the Gunners are keen on his 23 year old client. "Daniele's doing well, I'm happy for him. Arsenal? They didn't launch any assaults for him. They expressed a liking for him, but we have respect for Juventus." I wonder if contract talks with Juve are coming up soon? It does sound like the remark of an agent trying to get a better deal for his player.

 

Liverpool Flop Signs Lazio Contract Extension

Spanish international Luis Alberto struggled so badly at Liverpool that they sold him to Lazio for just 4m euros. Since then he has gone on to star for the Rome club, scoring 8 goals and making 8 assists this season so far. Lazio have now rewarded him with a new bumper contract and a year's extension, tying him to the club until 2022.

Written by Tris Burke February 07 2018 05:39:09