Rescinded Red

Oh the media monkeys and their junket junkies will invite you to their plastic pantomime. Throw their invites away.

Thursday Headlines: Fergie Gets Frisky at Man U Semi-Final Celebration

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Sir Alex Ferguson acts like he’s been there before after the Carling Cup Semi-Final Win. (Off the Post)

Maurice Edu blames US Soccer for placing too much pressure on Freddy Adu. (Tribal Footall)

Arsenal will make the Emirates Stadium much more technology-savvy. (Arsenal Mania)

Emerson thinks Kaka should move to Real Madrid (The Beautiful Game)

MLS is not pleased with Sports Business Journal over wording. (LA Times)

Filed under: Football, MLS, Soccer, , , , , , , , , ,

Tuesday Headlines: City Blame Milan for Failed Kaka Transfer

6275067Manchester City believe AC Milan spoiled the Kaka transfer by going public. (101 Great Goals)

Manchester United’s new home shirt. (EPL Talk)

Arsene Wenger doesn’t want to talk about winning the title, which is convenient because everyone knows they are out of the race. (Arsenal Mania)

Can Hoffenheim continue their dream season without Ibisevic? (Unprofessional Foul)

Manchester United have only come from behind in a second leg once. (Chickendinner)

Filed under: Football, Soccer, , , , , , ,

One Step Closer to Madrid: Cristiano Ronaldo Trademarks “CR9”

ronaldopfa2007Cristiano Ronaldo has copyrighted “CR9” in his home country of Portugal, sparking even further speculation he’s off to Real Madrid.

Ronaldo already owns “CR7,” emblazoned on a boutique and other merchandise. 

Should he move to Real Madrid, however, Ronaldo would need to change his number as Raul already wears the number 7 shirt.

The 23-year-old already announced he’s learning Spanish.  A Portuguese bank has a sponsorship deal with him that kicks in, if he moves to Spain.

The only worse kept secret than Ronaldo moving to Real Madrid next summer is LeBron signing with the Knicks in 2010.

Filed under: Football, Soccer, , , ,

Rafa Benitez’ Rant Against Sir Alex Ferguson

Filed under: Football, Premier League, Soccer, , , ,

Monday EPL Result: Manchester United 1-0 Middlesbrough

berbatovDimitar Berbatov scored for Manchester United against Middlesbrough.  Undoubtedly, this now justifies spending £31.5m on him last summer and losing Carlos Tevez.

Manchester United has scored only four goals in their last six Premier League games, but have earned 14 points, with four 1-0 victories and no concessions.

Would a content Cristiano Ronaldo get chippy with Emmanuel Pogatetz?

Middlesbrough have lost five of eight and have not won in the league since Nov. 11.

Filed under: Football, Premier League, Soccer, , , ,

Boxing Day Premier League Results

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Boxing Day is rough for all and, generally, Premier League defenders are not excepted.  With lapsed concentration get slapped haphazardly around the area, with goals raining in from every direction to the delight of spectators (See Chelsea 4 -4 Aston Villa).  This year, alas, only Manchester City and West Ham received the memo.

The Citizens stormed out of the relegation zone, beating Hull City so badly they looked as if they had met Joey Barton outside a McDonalds.  Robinho was fancy, but effective bagging a brace and imposing his flourish on an overmatched Hull defense.  The drubbing was so bad, Phil Brown refused to let Hull return to the dressing room.  Mark Hughes retrieved some of his pride after the loss to West Brom, but dousing the burner under his bottom after one match would be hasty.

West Ham won just their second Premier League victory in their last 13 matches, but it was impressive.  Carlton Cole and Craig Bellamy penetrated the casual and sloppy Portsmouth back line.  How does a team coached by Tony Adams concede nine goals in three matches?  Perhaps, they were too busy packing.

Arsenal drew Aston Villa 2-2 in the tastiest tie of the day, leaving Villa a three-point advantage for fourth place.  Martin O’Neill’s men comprehensively outplayed every Arsenal partisan on the pitch, except the goal post.  Arsenal then, inexplicably, went 2-0 up.  William Gallas gave away a legit penalty in the 65th minute, and Zat Knight, of all people, knocked in an injury-time equalizer.  Both sides could have won.  Both could have lost.  It was the fairest result.

United were big in Japan, and Carlos Tevez was just big enough to score the late winner against Stoke City.  United have scored just three goals in their past five Premier League matches, however they have not conceded and earned three 1-0 victories.  Given Liverpool and Chelsea’s inconsistency of late, Man U could be title favorites if they pick up their games in hand.

Liverpool’s Robbie Keane can be dangerous on a hot run, which he appears to have hit.  His two second-half goals in the 3-0 win against Bolton, as well as his equalizer last weekend against Arsenal have kept Liverpool on top of the table, shocking since this was their first December victory in all competitions.

The other contenders, Chelsea, earned their first home victory since Nov. 1 with their 2-0 defeat of West Brom.  Drogba received the central role, and scored his first league goal since March after three minutes.  Trim, reliable Frank scored in first-half injury time.  Chelsea put the game away.

Wigan vanquished Newcastle 2-1, with Ryan Taylor again tormenting the barcodes.  Approximately 80,000 combined people witnessed Tottenham – Fulham and Sunderland 0 – Blackburn 0.  They went home profoundly bored.

Filed under: Football, Premier League, Soccer, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Headlines: Elano to Spurs?

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Spurs will sign Elano, because you can never have too many ball-playing attacking midfielders. (Caught Offside)

Gemma Atkinson called off her engagement with Marcus Bent.  I was sure that relationship had 60 years all over it. (Sports Crackle Pop)

Zenit are “hopeful” Arsenal spend silly money on Arshavin. (The Spoiler)

Ben Foster wants to leave Manchester United. (Soccerlens)

Fat and Orange are concerned over Arsenal board developments.

Filed under: Football, Soccer, , , , , , , , , ,

Real Madrid Claim To Have Signed Cristiano Ronaldo

Football’s longest running super-saga that no one cares about has resurfaced en force.  Real Madrid’s director Pedro Trapote told the newspaper El Mundo the club have an agreement to buy Cristiano Ronaldo next summer, but can’t yet announce it officially.

cristiano-ronaldo-portugal1“If you are asking me what we are going to do now then I would tell you that we are going to do now then I would tell you that we have already signed the best player for the summer,” Trapote said.  “The best of the best.  It is Cristiano, there is no other.  It is better that we do not say anything at the moment though.”

“There are some clauses that prevent us from announcing it now.”

Real Madrid president Roman Calderon had said the club would halt its pursuit of Cristiano Ronaldo, after making eyes at him all summer.

United manager Sir Alex Ferguson, forced to speak to the media at the Club World Cup, denied a deal was in place.

“You don’t think we’d get into a contract with that mob, do you? Jesus Christ.” Ferguson said.  “I wouldn’t sell them a virus.  So that’s no — there is no agreement between the clubs.”

Cristiano Ronaldo refused comment.

There are two endings to this nauseating story.  First, Ronaldo says, without coercion, he wants to play for Manchester United.  Second, Manchester United sell Ronaldo to Real Madrid.  Unfortunately, neither appears imminent.

Filed under: Football, Premier League, Primera Liga, Soccer, Transfer Rumor, , , , ,

When Will Footballers Discover Free Agency?

cristiano-ronaldo-portugalBaseball pitcher CC Sabathia recently signed an eight-year $161 million contract with the New York Yankees.  His salary, approximately £15m per year, would make him the highest paid footballer in the world.  International football bandies about similar outrageous sums, in the form of transfer fees that go to the club not the players.  This begs the question, why have footballers not discovered free agency?

Cristiano Ronaldo tried to leave Manchester United for Real Madrid over the summer, just a year after signing a £120,000 per week contract with Manchester United.  The club want him to stay this season and likely next season, but eventually they will sell him to Madrid or elsewhere for a big payday, possibly £70-£100m.  To maintain control over Ronaldo, United will likely placate him with an extended contract and include a substantial raise.

However, if you were Ronaldo, why would you sign the extension?  His current contract with United expires in 2012, when he will be 27-years-old, with at least four years of top-level play left in him.  Why wouldn’t he bide his time until free agency at that point.

There’s a certain cache to being the subject of a record transfer deal, but Ronaldo won’t see that money, it hamstrings the club with whom he’s negotiating and he only gets to negotiate with that one club.  He derives no benefit from the large transfer deal.  Ronaldo may get a fat contract with Real Madrid, but he’s hardly realizing his potential.

If he became a free agent at the end of his contract, he arrives at an outrageous discount.  Teams can divert the transfer money into Ronaldo’s salary.  He can also negotiate with as many teams as he likes and auction himself to the highest bidder.  Coming for free, Ronaldo could start the bidding at £300,000 per week, involving all the big clubs in England, Spain and Italy.

Moreover, this possibility increases his leverage.  If United know that Ronaldo won’t resign, they will try to deal him before he leaves, to recover some value.  To agree to a deal with Real Madrid, Madrid would be forced to pre-empt him becoming a free agent, and pay him more. Ronaldo, rather than the clubs, would hold the transfer conch.

Who will be the first player who figures that out?  Will the players’ totally above-board agents let them?

Filed under: Football, Soccer, Transfer Rumor, , ,

Saturday EPL Results: Title Contenders Underwhelm

heurelho-gomes-spurs-190Liverpool 2 – 2 Hull City: Liverpool dropped points for the third time in four Premier League matches.  Gerrard’s brace evened proceedings, and the Reds stirred the pot during the second half.  But with Robbie Keane on the bench, Liverpool could not muster a third.

Tottenham 0 – 0 Manchester United: Spurs held the line despite injuries to King and Woodgate, with the maligned Gomes, surprisingly, making a crucial late save.  The goalkeeper relieved some angst, but Berbatov, the £30m man, will get more supporter scrutiny, as he once again went scoreless.

Middlesbrough 1 – 1 Arsenal: Adebayor scored early, but Aliadiere, who only tries against his former club, equalized to give Southgate his fifth result in a row against Wenger.  Arsenal missed the opportunity to pick up two points on Liverpool and Manchester United.  It’s sad when this is considered decent.

Manchester City 0 – 1 Everton: Neither side had a healthy striker, so it’s unsurprising that they battered each other boringly for much of the match.  What Cahill lacks as a pure striker, he makes up in grit, with his late header earning Everton a huge away victory.

Wigan 3 – 0 Blackburn: Pressure is pushing down on Paul Ince, as Blackburn succumbed meekly in their eleventh straight without a win.  Blackburn fans united with Wigan fans for chants of “You’re getting sacked in the morning.”

Aston Villa 4 – 2 Bolton: Gabby Agbonlahor doubled and Ashley Young scored another to secure Villa a solid victory.  The win moves them past Arsenal into fourth place.  Surprisingly, it’s only their second home league win since September.

Sunderland 4 – 0 West Brom: Sunderland built on last week’s moral victory with a tangible one, sparked by Kenwyne Jones scoring two goals in a minute.  The result moves Sunderland out of the relegation zone and places interim Ricky Sbragia in the permanent job discussion.

Filed under: Football, Premier League, Soccer, , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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