Comment & analysis round-up
Quote of the day: “Sometimes I am questioned, asking why I play better for the national squad than at Manchester City. I am the same at both places, but Manchester City is one team and the Brazil national squad is another. In all respect to Manchester City, who have good players, here I play with Kaka and Ronaldinho. It is totally different. But I believe I am playing well at City and have scored 11 goals in the league.” – Robinho.
Runner-up: “They (AIG) are no longer an independent private company. They now belong to the US government and I think that AIG should drop the sponsorship deal with Manchester United. It is unacceptable for US taxpayer.” – congressional Democrat Ed Pastor, representative for Arizona.
Today’s overview: As the England-Slovakia match draws ever closer, yesterday it was the turn of Goldenballs to face the media and shoot off soundbites for today headlines.
Kevin McCarra believes Beckham is now happy to take a seat in the England shadows, while Oliver Kay comments “say what you like about Beckham, but he intends to go on and on and on. And that, after all that he has been through, is impressive.”
Fabio Capello’s decision to call-up Ledley King is defended by Patrick Barclay. “Anyone can watch King and Woodgate perform as they did for Tottenham at Wembley last season, sigh and say what a pity it is they have such unfortunate injury records because otherwise they would be great assets to England.”
Matt Hughes picks up on how Deco is due to risk his Blues’ future by turning out for Portugal with a hamstring injury, before sticking the boot into the failed playmaker. “[Deco] has endured a miserable season since signing from Barcelona, but he has more to lose personally because he needs a strong end to the season to cement his position at the club.”
Shifting focus to South America, Marcela Mora y Araujo chronicles the excitement in Argentina ahead of Maradona’s first competitive match. “Whatever they do and however they play this Saturday, there is a sense that the national team once again embodies hopes and dreams.”
Heading into the Premier League, Harry Pearson lumps the woes of Gareth Southgate and Tony Mowbray together arguing that sometimes it is disadvantageous to have principles. “Principles are the last thing you want in football… They want to play attractive football and that is a noble aim… It could be that in 50 years’ time people will have come around to Tony and Gareth’s way of looking at things much as they did to Vincent van Gogh’s singular vision of the world.”
According to James Ducker, Rafa Benitez has already earmarked “the bulk of his Â£30 million summer transfer kitty on [Valencia’s David] Silva.” And the transfer rumours continue, the Telegraph linking AC Milan to a Â£35m bid for Arsenal’s Emmanuel Adebayor. While in the Mirror, Neil McLeman reports “West Ham are ready to break their transfer record for the second time this year after starting negotiations for Italian striker Sergio Floccari.”
Adebayor may want to heed the message of Sandy Macaskill in the Telegraph who looks at how a raft of footballers who have left Arsenal have seen their careers nosedive afterwards.
Sachin Nakrani details the latest developments in the power-struggle at Liverpool as “co-owner Tom Hicks has moved to strengthen his position at Anfield by putting part of his shares in the Major League Baseball team Texas Rangers up for sale.”
Mark Ogden reports that AIG’S outstanding Â£14 million payment to Manchester United could be the subject of a US Congress probe amid concerns that the final installment of the Â£56.5m agreement could be funded by federal bail-out money. But it’s not all gloom for United, the Independent report that “Manchester United have sent a shirt sponsorship proposal to the Indian conglomerate Tata Group.”
The Guardian report how one club is set to profit from the global economic downturn. “Tottenham Hotspur are set to save Â£40m on the cost of their new stadium due to the global financial crisis, the club’s finance director Matthew Collecott has revealed.”