Sports news, commentary and scores with wit and added value. We compare and contrast the best and worst sports reporting in the mainstream press, blogs, TV and online. We love the English Premier League (Arsenal, Liverpool, Spurs, Manchester United and Manchester City) and all things football but we cover cricket, rugby, the Olympics, tennis, golf, F1 and highlights of the sporting year.
Transfer Balls: Alvaro Morata Is Free To Arsenal, Spurs And Manchester United After Signing For Juventus
TRANSFER Balls: A look at Real Madrid’s Alvaro Morata in the British Press.
Today the Sun tells readers:
ARSENAL have been handed a massive transfer boost with the news that Alvaro Morata is free to leave Real Madrid.
Arsene Wenger has been hot on the heels of the Spanish Under-21 youngster for six months. And now the Gunners have been given the green light to make a move after Real boss Carlo Ancelotti revealed the club are happy to sanction the whizkid’s exit.
SO. FIFA is not the hot bed of love and equality we thought it was. It turns out that football is run by greed. John Oliver told of his shock and dismay on Last Week Tonight:
The negative publicity has been so overwhelming that even some of the World Cup’s biggest and longest-serving sponsors, including Adidas and Sony, have expressed concern. “The negative tenor of the public debate around FIFA at the moment is neither good for football nor for FIFA and its partners,” a spokesman for Adidas told The Guardian. Perhaps corporate pressure will accomplish what mockery and muckraking have failed to do: convince FIFA to reform.
ANDROS Townsend, the Spurs sub with five England caps tells readers of his Sun column:
“I don’t want to generalise but it’s usually the South American teams that resort to dirty tactics. And – at a World Cup – you have to be prepared for that.”
He doesn’t want to generalise. But he will. Those dirty Latins, eh.
But is he right?
And, as this chart shows, the dirty teams don’t do well.
TRANSFER Balls – in association with the Daily Fabregas, a look at reporting on the Barcelona player.
The Daily Telegraph says Chelsea aren’t all that keen on giving Arsenal money:
Arsenal could miss out on Cesc Fabregas payment in Chelsea transfer deal with Barcelona
Jose Mourinho’s team would prefer not to pay their Premier League rivals a percentage of any fee should they agree to sign the Spanish midfielder
Manchester United Balls: Mourinho Puts In A Better tackle at Old Trafford Than Smalling And Jones Ever Have
AT the Soccer Aid pro-am charity match, Chelsea manger Jose Mourinho makes his move:
@PL_Jokes quips: “Jose Mourinho putting in a better tackle at Old Trafford than Smalling and Jones ever have!! ”
TRANSFER Balls: Is Paul Pogba making a move from Juventus? Let’s se what the papers have been saying:
June 5, Manchester Evening News: “Pogba agent rules out Premier League return”
The Frenchman has been the subject of reports linking both United and City with a swoop, but is happy to remain with Juventus this summer.
…the player’s representative Mino Raiola has now moved to end speculation over his client’s future. He wrote on Twitter: “My player Paul Pogba happy at the club.. He is not going anywhere.”
TRANSFER Balls: The Press is talking about Lorenzo Insigne heading to Arsenal from Napoli. TalkSport calls him “Italy’s Messi” He must be good.
The Mirror reports:
[Agent] Antonio Ottaiano has declared: “We take into account the praising reports that Wenger has given about the player. We are honoured that a club like Arsenal could have Lorenzo on their wish list. I don’t see that there can be any further developments unless Arsenal speak to Napoli directly and Napoli change their view on Lorenzo’s role here.”
Well, quite. This just sound like an agent talking loudly in public.
But the Metro says:
Arsenal to make £17million Lorenzo Insigne bid – if he impresses at World Cup
The Mirror does as it always does and leads with a question:
Arsenal to buy Napoli’s Lorenzo Insigne after the World Cup?
This can be summed up: No. Betteridge’s law of headlines is an adage that states: “Any headline which ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no.”
And then the Star chip in with news that the story is balls:
Arsenal will have to move mountains to if they want sign Napoli ace Lorenzo Insigne
Does moving a mountain cost just £17m?
More Transfer Balls every day.
BARCELONA want to hijack Porto star Eliaquim Mangala’s proposed move to the Premier League.
The Metro added that Bayern Munich wanted the player.
Today the Guardian tells us that
Eliaquim Mangala would prefer Manchester United to Manchester City.
Chelsea, Paris Saint-German and Real Madrid also on radar
TRANSFER Balls: With cocky Nicklas Bendtner, newly “released” by Arsenal:
June 6, The Sun:
NICKLAS BENDTNER is being chased by FOUR Premier League clubs — with Hull the new favourites to land the Dane. Premier League new-boys Leicester and Burnley are keen, along with Crystal Palace.
June 6, The Indy:
Nicklas Bendtner transfer latest: Frankfurt and Stuttgart reportedly interested in Arsenal flop Nicklas Bendtner but wage demands could scupper any move to Germany
Can we trust the Indy, which cites Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet as its source?
The Mirror clarifies:
Arsenal misfit Nicklas Bendtner looking for £104,000-a-week deal at his next club
In any case, the Dane is too to Newcastle United, as the Chronicle reported.
But they are all wide of the mark. As Yahoo recalls, the Dane is not shot of confidence:
“How do you envisage continuing your career?” he was asked by Danish publication Politiken.
“[At] Real Madrid or Barcelona,” came the instant answer.
Let’s hope they have an eBay account (see above).
More Transfer Balls every day…
WORLD Cup Balls presents the wisdom of Spurs’ player Andros Townsend, now ‘writing’ for the Sun:
MISSING out on a World Cup is the most devastating thing in football. And it is good news that Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain should only sit out the opener against Italy.
As there is nothing more painful in the game than getting sidelined for the world’s biggest tournament.
TRANSFER Balls – more news from the Daily Fabreags. Following the Daily Star and TalkSports‘ “exclusive” news that Barcelona’s Cesc Fabregas has passed a medical and signed for Chelsea, the Mirror today tells its readers that, er, he hasn’t:
So. Jose Mourinho is “interested” in Fabregas. Well, so too as ManCity, Manchester United, Liverpool and Zenit St Petersburg , according to the Press.
HOW can football be sold to the Americans in time for the FIFA 2014 World Cup?
TRASNFER Balls: The Daily Fabregas.
Th story do far: the Barcelona player has been linked with moves for Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal. It’s a Transfer Balls Royal Flush: all the big clubs covered with not a single fact to support the links.
Now read on…
June 5, 2013, BBC: “Cesc Fabregas: Arsenal not pursuing Barcelona midfielder”
FACES of the day: Archie McDiarmid takes part in the Ardbeg Peat Football Championship in St Andrew Square, Edinburgh.
TRANSFER Balls: Is Loic Remy still a QPR player?
Arsenal agree personal terms with QPR striker Loic Remy
On June 3, the IBTimes, said Remy was still at QPR. He was just part of a list of maybes on their way to the Gunners:
Loic Remy, Antoine Griezmann, Carlos Vela, Mari Mandzukic and Karim Benzema all heavily linked.
TRANSFER Balls brings you today’s update from the Daily Fabregas. Today the Sun leads with the news that the Barcelona players is wanted by…Arsenal.
Cesc Fabregas will not return to Arsenal from Barcelona as Arsene Wenger rules out £30m move
TRANSFER Balls: A quick look at Manchester United and Kevin Strootman:
June 4, The Guardian: “Manchester United make Kevin Strootman a £30m January target”
Louis van Gaal has made Kevin Strootman a £30m January target for Manchester United – and the midfielder would be open to the move should Roma consider it, although there is yet to be any official contact between the clubs.
WORLD CUP Balls spots England training in Miami. Liverpool’s Steven Gerrard is being treated to a dose of Roy Hodgson’s tactical nous…
TRANSFER Balls: The summer so far with Chelsea’s Eden Hazard.
May27, Evening Standard: “Eden Hazard rejects talk of PSG switch”
Eden Hazard today dismissed the possibility of moving to Paris Saint Germain this summer…
Asked about the link with PSG, he said: “If you got to know me you’d know I’m not someone who is disturbed by it. Every year they say I’m everywhere. It’s part of the job. I focus on the World Cup which is much more important than what is said in the papers.”
TRANSFER Balls presents the Daily Fabregas. Is the former Arsenal captain set to leave Barcelona? Let’s se what the experts have been saying in today’s newspapers:
The Daily Star deals only in facts:
Chelsea agree deal with Arsenal and Man United target Cesc Fabregas
Transfer Balls: Manchester United Offer Liverpool £25m Less For Luis Suarez Than Real Madrid Will Buy Him For
TRANSFER Balls: How’s the summer shaping up for Liverpool’s Luis Suarez? Well, for Liverpool fans hoping their star man will remain at Anfield, it began well.
Daily Telegraph, March 4, 2014:
Liverpool striker Luis Suárez vows to stay at Anfield no matter whether club qualifies for Champions League
Speaking to Uruguayan TV channel Canal 10, the new PFA Player of the Year said: “Don’t worry, nothing is going to happen to me. I’m very happy here and my family is happy here.”
TRANSFER Balls: What news of Chelsea legends Frank Lampard?
On May 31, The Daily Mirror told its readers that Lampard had joined the New York City FC:
TRANSFER Balls: Having been linked in the media with a transfer from Barcelona to Manchester United, Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City, the Telegraph brings news that Cesc Fabregas is wanted by…Chelsea. The aim in Transfer Balls is for the Press to link every top player with all the big English clubs. So. Well done, Fleet Street.
Writes the Tele:
Exclusive: Jose Mourinho wants Spain World Cup midfielder Cesc Fabregas to replace Frank Lampard, who has released a statement saying he has officially left Chelsea
It was waaaay back on June 1, that the Daily Telegraph told readers:
Spain international will be allowed leave the Nou Camp with Manchester City now clear favourites to land the midfielder
WEST Ham United fans are celebrating The Treble with an official t-shirt. It turns out that season 2013-14 was a stella year for the club.