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Sunday, June 24, 2012

Euro 2012 analysis: England and Italy set for tight contest

Euro 2012 analysis: England and Italy set for tight contest


  • Venue: Olympic Stadium, Kiev
  • Date: Sunday, 24 June
  • Kick-off: 19:45 BST
Coverage: BBC One, BBC One HD, BBC Sport website and BBC Radio 5 live
The current England and Italy teams share so many of the same characteristics that it is no wonder experts are expecting a tight encounter in their Euro 2012 quarter-final on Sunday.
Solid defence, a talismanic midfielder and a potentially match-winning striker are just three aspects which both sides will aim to rely on as they target a semi-final against Germany next Thursday.

Steven Naismith; Gers pair reject newco switch

Naismith and Whittaker consider themselves free agents

Gers pair reject newco switch
Naismith and Whittaker consider themselves free agents

Steven Naismith and Steven Whittaker have rejected the transfer of their contracts to the newco at Rangers and consider themselves to be free agents.

The Ibrox outfit, who are now known as The Rangers FC after financial troubles forced them into liquidation, had claimed that all player contracts had been transferred and that anyone disrupting the process would face legal action.

They have, however, seen Rhys McCabe and Sone Aluko object to the decision, and Naismith and Whittaker have now followed suit.

Lawyers acting for the Scotland international duo claim their clients will not be reporting for pre-season training and are seeking new clubs.

A statement from Simon Catto of HBJ Gateley said: "Steven Naismith and Steven Whittaker are formally intimating their objection to becoming employed by the transferee in accordance with Regulations 4(7) and 4(9) of the TUPE Regulations.

"Accordingly, Steven Naismith and Steven Whittaker will not be attending for training or any other meeting next week and consider themselves to be under no contractual obligations to any party.

"They consider they are not employed by any party and are free to consider any employment options they wish."

Naismith, who describes himself as a "lifelong Rangers fan", has scored 28 goals for the club since joining from Kilmarnock in 2007, having originally been a Rangers trainee.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The press welcome Tito Vilanova

The press welcome Tito Vilanova

The Catalan and Spanish news outlets welcome the new FC Barcelona manager after yesterday's presentation 

The dailies cover Tito Vilanova's first press conference

Tito Vilanova’s presentation as FC Barcelona’s new head manager was covered in depth by news outlets and sports dailies of Catalonia and Spain. After claiming 14 titles during his time as Josep Guardiola’s assistant manager, Vilanova’s new two-year deal captured the attention of the sports world. 

Sport. A photo of Tito Vilanova features on the front of the Catalan sports daily along with the text: “serious, secure, sincere.” On the inside of today’s edition of Sport, Josep Maria Casanovas welcomes the new manager in an op-ed titled “Vilanova’s great debut... off the pitch”. Joan Vehils also welcomes Vilanova in his article “Tito Vilanova shows his gratitude to Pep Guardiola”.

Mundo Deportivo. “Mister Vilanova” features across the front of the daily, while Santi Nolla writes “his own profile” on the manager from Bellcaire d’Empordà. Miguel Rico’s op-ed also makes reference to the manager’s contract: “Vilanova: football and only football.”

El 9 Esportiu. The Catalan daily says the Vilanova is “Incomparable”.

El Periódico. The newspaper’s cover reads “Tito dresses up as Pep.” The newspaper also features an op-ed that discusses the presentation ceremony of the new manager.

Ara. “Pep encouraged me to sign”, says the Catalan daily. Joan Maria Pou dedicates his column to the new manager in the piece “Child’s play”.

Marca. The sports daily covers the manager’s first press conference: “Tito Vilanova’s plans”

As. The Madrid-based daily covers the reactions of Sandro Rosell, Andoni Zubizarreta and Tito Vilanova.

Messi on target with two goals in charity game

Messi on target with two goals in charity game

Messi stars for America All Stars against Mexico All Stars and then signs shirt for young fan 

All monies from the game, played at the Andrés Quintana Roo Stadium, to go to charity to help disabled children

Leo Messi made a public apology to the Mexican children who’d come to see him, after arriving a day late in Cancun due to an aeroplane problem and he then went on to give them a treat on the pitch with a typically impressive performance.

With two goals, Messi led his team to a 5-3 win against a Mexican All Star team, with John Viáfara, the Brazilian Diego and Dani Osvaldo also chipping in with goals in a game staged to raise money for disabled children.

More than 20,000 turned out to see the game and on three occasions fans ran onto the pitch to salute their hero- When one of them – a 12-year-old boy- was being escorted off the pitch by security men, Messi went over and signed the youngster’s shirt .

Leo Messi played the first 78 minutes of the game and was cheered off when he was substituted.

Desglossament: Messi very satisfied

After the charity game, Messi commented: "I am very happy about how it went. The fans responded and I think they went away happy”. The Barça man was also asked about new coach Tito Vilanova and he explained how happy he was with the appointment: ”we all know Tito well”.