Football News: Owner Kicks Assistant Manager, Players On The Move At Newcastle And Leicester And More

 

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Owner Kicks Assistant Manager, Players On The Move At Newcastle And Leicester And More
Image from: zimbio.com

1. Watford receive double award
Watford's season has been beyond all expectations so far this season, with the Hornets currently holding on to a top half place in the Premier League. Now they have received recognition for their performances with a double award. Manager Quique Sanchez Flores lifted the Manager of the Month award for December and Odion Ighalo got the Player of the Month for the same month. Ighalo netted five goals in the month of December, as the Hornets beat Liverpool, Sunderland and Norwich City to finish the month in the top 10.

2. Rakitic gets award
Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitic has picked up the Croatian Player of the Year award for 2015. The 27 year old has joined Barca during a period of success, a success which he has played a large part in achieving. A treble of Primera Liga, Copa Del Rey and Champions League last season has already been added to with the European Supercup and Club World Cup this season. Rakitic also helped Croatia to qualify for Euro 2016. "A big thank you to everyone who voted. This year has been memorable on many levels, first and foremost my wife's pregnancy. Furthermore, there are all the Barcelona's title, with the goal against Juventus in the Champions League final really a special feeling", said Rakitić for hns-cff.hr. "This success is just another incentive to keep working on myself, to give my best as always, since it is very difficult to keep all the trophies, and that is my intention, to remain on top. My great desire is to achieve a good result with Croatia. We have a quality young team hungry for success, and we will do all we can to make Croatians happy and proud", he added. Rakitic polled 48% of the votes, ahead of Ivan Perisic of Inter Milan, who got 32% and Luka Modric of Real Madrid, who got 20% of the votes.



3. Foxes close in on Ghana international
Leicester City are close to making a new signing, despite comments from manager Claudio Ranieri about their business for the January window being done after signing winger Demarai Gray. After rumours suggested that the Foxes were close to signing Daniel Amartey, his club, FC Copenhagen have confirmed that negotiations are ongoing between themselves and Leicester after Leicester made an offer for Amartey. The 21 year old, who can play in defence or midfield, has been keen to move on according to his agent. "Many top European clubs are interested in him. French clubs are no exception," Amartey's agent Hasan Cetinkaya told footafrica365.fr. "There are recruiters who watch him at every game. Today Daniel is ready to move up a gear by joining a club at the highest level." The Danish club said in a statement: "There are rumours today in the market that FC Copenhagen is planning to sell the football player Daniel Amartey to English club Leicester City. FC Copenhagen can confirm that it has received an offer for Daniel Amartey from Leicester City. Negotiations between the parties are ongoing."

4. Villa bid for former Brum player
Seattle Sounders striker Obafemi Martins has claimed that he received a recent approach from Premier League side Aston Villa. The Nigerian has played in England in the past, initially for Newcastle United, but later, after a spell with Rubin Kazan, he turned up at Birmingham City on loan, Villa's deadly rivals. While there he scored a goal which enabled Birmingham to lift the League Cup against Arsenal. Now, with the MLS in the close season, Martins claims he had an offer to join Villa, and that they are not the only Premier League team interested in him, after the 31 year old's prolific spell in the MLS. "An interesting offer from Villa was proposed. I was flattered but other things came up," said Martins. "There's an interest from another Premier League team," he added.



5. Exiles replace Sheridan
Newport County have appointed Warren Feeney as their new manager. The League Two club lost their previous manager, John Sheridan, this week, as he moved to take up the manager's job at League One Oldham Athletic, after only joining County in October. Feeney has now stepped up, having also joined the Welsh club in October to become Sheridan's assistant, leaving a position as manager of Northern Ireland's Linfield to take the role.

6. Cotterill sacked
Bristol City manager Steve Cotterill has been sacked just a few months after leading the club to promotion from League One. He also led the club to the Johnstone's Paints Trophy last season. City have been struggling in the Championship, having not won for seven games, and sit in 22nd in the Championship. Club chairman Keith Dawe, speaking of the decision, said "will live in the memory for a long time" but added: "Sadly, since the highs of last March and May things have not gone our way on the pitch. The club's aspiration is to ultimately become a Premier League club and this decision has been made to achieve our overall strategy for growth and player development."



7. Tiote set for China move
With Chinese football currently on the rise, investment in the game has been growing fast, and clubs there are looking for big money signings to join them. Newcastle United's Cheick Tiote is set to become one of those, as he has agree personal terms with Shanghai Shenhua following the club agreeing to an £8m transfer. Tiote has not been first choice for the Toon this season under new manager Steve McClaren and has seen Jonjo Shelvey arrive from Swansea City and Henri Saivet from Bordeaux to compete with him for a place in the midfield. Tiote will head out to China for a medical in the next few days where he will be reunited with former Newcastle striker Demba Ba.

8. Owner gets ban for kicking the assistant manager
League Two Leyton Orient have been gradually turning into a bit of a circus in recent years, so it is no surprise the latest story coming from the club sounds like a clowns' routine! Their Italian owner, Francesco Becchetti has been the main reason they have become more 'interesting' recently. Now he is facing a six match ban after kicking the clubs assistant manager Andy Hessenthaler.

Becchetti admitted violent conduct but denied it took place on the pitch, and is appealing a stadium ban. Becchetti also received a fine of £40,000.



9. Klopp admits to Man Utd talks
Jurgen Klopp has admitted that he could have become Manchester United manager if things had been different. While the Liverpool boss was still in charge at Borussia Dortmund, he held talks with Man Utd about succeeding Alex Ferguson. "We spoke," he told reporters. "We spoke not a lot but, for me, it was a lot. It was a big honour, the whole talk, to be honest. There was a time [when United were interested] but I could not leave Dortmund. That is it. You are in April and you are in the middle of the planning for next season. You have this player and this player and this player who is coming in but then you are not there any more? That doesn't work. Not in my life anyway. I did not hear about a real offer but, if there was, I could not have done it. I first had to finish the job with Dortmund and then think about other things. Maybe that is not the smart way but that is my way. Of course I was loyal to Dortmund. It was the same at Mainz."

10. Cardiff join embargo
Cardiff City have become the fourth Championship club currently under a transfer embargo, along with Bolton Wanderers, Nottingham Forest and Fulham. The punishment will apply to the rest of the January transfer window, after the Welsh club broke the Championship's financial fair play rules. Cardiff deny breaching the regulations and they say that they "have complied with the FFP requirements for season 2014-15 - contrary to the League's position". The statement added: "As such, further advice will be sought, prior to a decision being made internally as to whether or not an appeal will be lodged. Cardiff City again expects to trade within the set FFP limits for 2015-16 and therefore anticipates full participation in the summer 2016 transfer window."

Written by Tris Burke

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