Football News: Review Of The Day 23rd February 2018


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Review of the Day

Sol Calls Himself 'One Of The Greatest Minds In Football'

Despite not actually being in football right now, former Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur defender Sol Campbell has called himself one of the greatest minds in football while ranting about not being given a chance to manage after being overlooked for the Oxford United manager's position. "I did go (for the Oxford job) and they didn't accept me," he said during an appearance on the Arsenal podcast Highbury & Heels. "Maybe it was a lack of experience, things like that, but it's a full circle. Experience? How do I get experience? Well I need a job to get experience. I don't want to go too low that it's a struggle, and I don't want to go too low that I'm under someone and thinking "what am I doing here?" I would rather be managing a club myself.

I'm confident and it's not like it's rocket science to run a football club, especially when you get to that level. If you're intelligent enough and a quick learner you will learn pretty soon, within two or three games, what the team needs, training-wise, to survive in that league, get better in that league, to get in the play-offs or even win the league. I'm intelligent enough, it's not like I played on a fox and dog pitch all my life. I can't believe some people, I'm one of the greatest minds in football and I'm being wasted because of a lack of experience or 'maybe he talks his mind too much'. Go to Germany, they love people who speak their minds. They got the jobs. I'm sorry that I've got a mind, but don't be scared of that. That should be something you want at your club, but obviously not." Such a great mind, yet he struggles to figure out why he has not got a job in management, despite not bothering to get coaching experience.

Wilson Suffers Shoulder Injury

Relegation battlers Hull City, struggling in the Championship following their recent relegation from the Premier League, have been hit by the news that January loan signing Harry Wilson has been ruled out for up to a month. The young Welsh winger has ligament damage.

Championship Has Third Highest Attendances In Europe

Away attendances have increased for the 4th successive year in the English Football League with the average number of away fans attending Championship games up to 1,571. The rise has seen it move above Spain's La Liga and Italy's Serie A in terms of attendances, with just the English Premier League and Germany's Bundesliga ahead of it in the 2016/17 season. The EFL itself saw the highest cumulative attendances since 1959 following an 11% increase over the previous season.

Leeds Confirm Fan Vote On New Crest

After Leeds United's initial design for a new crest was received with ridicule and dismay from the fans, as well as a petition asking for it to be scrapped which reached over 78,000 signatures, they agreed to have a rethink. Now they have confirmed that supporters will get the chance to vote on which design will be implemented on shirts for the 2019/20 centenary season. A Leeds statement read: "Due to the volume of ideas and designs submitted by fans and their focus around celebrating our 100-year anniversary, we can confirm that we will now be introducing a new club crest on the shirt for the 2019/2020 centenary season and beyond. We would like to take this opportunity to thank all fans for the inspiration they have provided which, following further consultation with supporters' groups, will form the basis of a democratic vote later this year. We look forward to our loyal and passionate fans selecting a crest that will proudly herald in the next 100 years."

Walsall Trial Former QPR Youngster

Walsall have given a trial to Met Police defender Jeremy Arthur. The 19 year old was released by Queens Park Rangers at the end of last season and has been rebuilding his career in the Isthmian League Premier Division with Met Police.

Fleetwood Look To Sheridan

Fleetwood Town have handed the reins to John Sheridan as head coach until the end of the season. The 53 year old replaces Uwe Rosler, who was sacked last week after a run of seven straight defeats. "John is exactly the sort of character we need at Fleetwood Town in the current situation," chairman Andy Pilley told the club's website. "He has a proven track record of having an instant impact with clubs and we are confident that will be the case here. We have found ourselves in a difficult position in League One and it was important we appointed someone quickly to address this. John is here until the end of the season, at which point we'll review the situation again, it's an agreement which suits both parties at this time. I'd like to welcome him to Highbury and can assure him he'll have the full backing of all the players, staff and supporters to keep ourselves in League One."

Oyston Ends Legal Action Against Blackpool Supporters

Blackpool's majority owner Owen Oyston has agreed to end litigation against fans of the club. A number of fans had a series of face-to-face meetings with Oyston, some who were still paying off money owed to Oyston following successful litigation and others who were facing litigation from him. "Following these meetings Owen has agreed that all ongoing litigation will be discontinued, that judgments obtained will either not be enforced or set aside and also that no further action will be taken against those in receipt of letters of claim," Justice4Fans said in a statement. The group added: "It would like to thank Owen on behalf of the fans he met with for his hospitality during the various meetings and for recognising the importance of bringing these outstanding claims to a conclusion." The fans were sued for libel over comments made on online message boards as they expressed anger over the way the Oyston family ran the club.

EFL To Bring Forward Transfer Deadline Day

EFL clubs have voted to move forward the close of their transfer window in line with Premier League clubs for the 2017/18 season, after a meeting held at Villa Park. Transfer deadline day will now be Thursday 9th August, but the loan window will continue to be open until 31st August. Players still have until the 31st August to be freed up for Bosman transfers before the January window opens. There are also new rules to block the fielding of weakened teams late in the season, when some teams have nothing left to play for: "for any League match played on or after the fourth Thursday in March (including season 2017-18), any team sheet for a League game should include at least 10 outfield players who featured on the team sheet for the League match before." There will also be the introduction of goal-line technology in the play-offs in League 1 and League 2. The final change is that all National League clubs wishing to be promoted to the EFL have to have a natural pitch.

Glentoran Bring McFall Out Of Retirement

Glentoran sacked manager Gary Haveron just a few days ago and have replaced him with Ronnie McFall, who last managed them over 30 years ago. McFall had led Glentoran to an unbeaten season in 1980-81 as they won the league before moving to Portadown and spending nearly 30 years there until retiring in 2016. He will now be in charge of Glentoran until the end of the season: "Our former manager Ronnie McFall has accepted the invitation to return to the position. Ronnie has vast experience in the local game and has enjoyed great success throughout his career," read a statement released by Glentoran on Thursday. "Ronnie will guide us until the end of the season at which time a decision on the future direction of the club will be announced. He will select his own backroom team and will be in charge for Saturday's home match with Cliftonville. Ronnie previously enjoyed nine highly successful years at Glentoran as both player and manager. We know our support base will give Ronnie its full backing on his return to the Oval."

Thai Businessman Buys Oxford United

Thai businessman Sumrith Thanakarnjanasuth, known as 'Tiger' has bought Oxford United. He was previously part of a 3 person consortium who owned Reading, along with his sister, until the trio sold the club to a Chinese brother and sister. Outgoing chairman Darryl Eales told the club website: "My ambition has always been to help the club achieve sustainable success. We have made significant progress on and off the pitch, and I believe a partner with similar ambition but greater resources will accelerate the prospect of achieving this objective. Tiger has the financial resources, high level connections in football, including with the EFL, and, critically, the passion and drive which can deliver on the club's ambitions."

Wales To Face Mexico

Wales have confirmed an international friendly with Mexico is to be played in the Rose Bowl, Pasadena, California on 28th May, as Mexico look to prepare for the World Cup in Russia. While new manager Ryan Giggs should have pretty much a full strength side, as the Premier League ends on 13th May, the Champions League final is just 2 days before hand.

Bolton Sign Free Agent

Former Sunderland midfielder Jan Kirchhoff, who has been plagued by injury in the last few years, has joined Bolton Wanderers on a deal until the end of the season. The German, who can also play at centre back, has not played a competitive match since December 2016 and was released by Sunderland at the end of last season. He told the club website: "I'm really pleased to be here and happy to be back in football." He is 27, so still has time on his side in his attempt to come back from his injury problems.

Semedo Charged With Attempted Murder

Villareal defender Ruben Semedo has been charged with attempted murder in a Spanish court. The 23 year old has also been charged with robbery, assault, illegal detention and possession of illegal weapons and has been remanded without bail. Semedo signed for the Yellow Submarine in June for 14m euros from Sporting Lisbon. The court, the Tribunal Superior de Justicia de la Comunidad Valenciana, told BBC Sport: "The court of Lliria has ordered provisional detention, without bail, for Villarreal player Ruben Semedo. The judge has charged the player with attempted murder, injuries, threats, illegal detention, illegal possession of weapons and robbery with violence." His agent, Catio Baldo, has said that his client denies all the allegations.

Batshuayi Heard Monkey Noises

On-loan Chelsea forward Michy Batshuayi has complained of hearing racist monkey noises from the Atalanta fans as his Borussia Dortmund team knocked the Italian club out of the Europa League. Batshuayi tweeted: "2018 and still racists monkey noises in the stands ... really ?! Hope you have fun watching the rest of the Europa League on TV while we are through." Atalanta received a suspended one game stand closure after Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly was subjected to racist chants during a Serie A game.

Police Officer Dies During Fan Clashes In Europa League

Violent clashes between rival fans marred the Europa League match between Athletic Bilbao and Spartak Moscow, as video footage showed supporters firing fireworks at each during street confrontations. As officers from the Basque Country's police force, the Ertzaintza, tried to deal with the violence, one officer sadly died, believed to be because of a heart attack. "Our condolences to colleagues, friends and relatives of the Ertzaina deceased in act of service," Bilbao police said. After the game, the La Liga club tweeted: "Our heartfelt condolences to the family and companions of the deceased officer today. The Athletic Club shows its strongest rejection of the violence generated around football."

Panama Firm Pleads Guilty In FIFA Corruption Scandal

A Panamanian company, which imports and exports football kits, has pleaded guilty to bribing the former president of Costa Rica's football federation, as the FIFA corruption scandal takes a new twist. Mimo International Imports and Exports admitted fraud for illicitly paying Eduardo Li $500,000, while Li was head of the Costa Rican federation. Li himself was arrested in 2015 and pleaded guilty to extortion and fraud in October 2016, leading to a lifetime suspension from FIFA. Mimo International have agreed to reimburse the Costa Rican federation with the $500,000, as well as paying a $900,000 fine and voluntarily liquidating the company within 3 months.

Wilshere Most Overrated Player On The Planet

After Arsenal slumped to a defeat to Ostersunds, though still made it through to the next round of the Europa League, there has been much criticism of the team, including from manager Arsene Wenger's comments about complacency. However none have been so forthright as Roy Keane, who was particularly vocal in his critique of England midfielder Jack Wilshere. "Arsenal are a great example of how not to start a game of football," Keane said on ITV . "They are so slow out of the blocks. Poor attitude, no energy, no desire. It's not like a light switch, you can't just turn it on and off. A lot of that will come from the manager and his coaching staff, but ultimately it has to come from the player. You have to motivate yourself. You have your pride and you want to do well for yourself, your team-mates, your family and to turn up like that was a shambles. We have seen it so many times from Arsenal. They went to Nottingham Forest [in the FA Cup last month] with exactly the same attitude and lost. You make excuses for Arsenal all the time, but it's a load of rubbish. The Arsenal players must drive you crazy. A shambles. You look for your senior players to lead by example...when Wilshere is your captain, to me, he is probably the most over-rated player on the planet." I am loath to agree with Keane, but it is difficult to argue with his assessment of Wilshere, who seems to sum up the old mantra of a player becoming better in the eyes of fans when they are not in the team, as his constant injury absences have somehow led to him being highly rated.

Morocco Gets Blatter's Backing

In probably the worst news Morocco's fourth bid to hold a World Cup could receive, disgraced former FIFA president Sepp Blatter has thrown his weight behind their bid. In a tweet on his official twitter account, Blatter said "Morocco would be the logical host!, It is time for Africa again!" The Moroccans are competing with a joint bid from the US, Mexico and Canada, so it should be an easy choice, as that kind of joint bid makes little sense, with such huge distances to travel. However Blatter is someone no one wants to agree with right now, so his oar being stuck in will have done nothing to help the situation.

Written by Tris Burke

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