Saturday, December 20, 2008

Mourinho hails super United - but can't help a cheeky swipe at Rooney

Jose Mourinho expects to be facing the world’s top team when Inter Milan tackle Manchester United in the Champions League but he could not resist a typical swipe about Wayne Rooney’s availability.

‘I wanted United because I want to face the best,’ he added.

‘They are European champions and will probably become world champions.

'They have the Ballon d’Or winner in Cristiano Ronaldo, many other great players and a great coach in Sir Alex.

'All this will motivate us.’

Mourinho then took a dig at UEFA for ignoring Rooney’s stamp on Aalborg’s Kasper Risgard in United’s final group game, a decision which cleared the striker to meet Inter in the last 16 in February.

The former Chelsea boss, recalling Michael Essien’s ban for a bad tackle on Liverpool’s Dietmar Hamann in 2005, said: ‘If they are the rules, they must be respected.

'But something extraordinary happened to me when I was at Chelsea.

'The rules were changed exclusively for us. We played in the group phase in the same group as Liverpool.

‘This could not happen now and Essien was disqualified for three matches through trial by TV.

'The same thing didn’t happen with Rooney last week.

'So he will be available against us.’

United, who are in Sunday's Club World Cup Final in Japan, are away to Inter first and Ferguson said: ‘It will be interesting to come up against Jose again.

‘He’s a character with a good personality and I’ve always got on well with him.

'He knocked us out of the competition when he was at Porto, so I hope we have the luck they had in that tie this time round.’


Turkish trainer protests religious discrimination

The Turkish physical trainer of Steaua Bucharest has protested to FIFA after he was fired because he's a Muslim. Steaua owner Gigi Becali fired Yuksel Yesilova on Saturday saying he brought back luck to Steaua because of his religion.

Becali said: "Steaua is a Christian team and we had bad luck because of him. I don't want to see him here. We can't keep a Muslim in a team that has a cross on its team bus and shirts."

Yesilova said Friday he had been called by FIFA officials about his firing. His contract expired in 2010.


Surgeons: Gattuso really is hard!

Gennaro Gattuso amazed the medical community again after his knee surgery. “We had to change the scalpel, as he has very hard bones!”

The Milan and Italy man recovered in record time from multiple fractures to his wrist earlier this season and hopes he can also cut the expected six-month spell on the sidelines for ligament damage.

“The surgeon took the tendon, an incomplete part, and made a tunnel to put the ligament through. It will take six months for this to form a strong cruciate ligament,” said Krystel De Reycke.

The assistant to Professor Marc Martens – who also operated on Ronaldo and other top stars – revealed a surprising moment during the surgery.

“During the operation we had to change the scalpel, as Gattuso has very hard bones. He is extraordinary! This has never happened before.”

It was not the only physical anomaly they discovered, as the World Cup winner was able to play for 86 minutes after he had torn knee ligaments in the 1-0 win over Catania.

“He has some very large muscles that allowed him to do that,” the assistant told Sky Italia television.

“Now he will wear a protective cast for a month and that will give him normal mobility without limits. He’ll then walk with crutches for 10 days.

“Another protective device is needed up for another month, but after four months he can start running again.”


Marek Hamsik: I Thought I Was Going To Die

Napoli midfielder Marek Hamsik has been outstanding this season, but Calcio's image has taken another huge blow after masked gunmen robbed him of his Rolex watch and €800.

A police investigation is underway and Hamsik has revealed thought he was going to die when the criminals demanded valuables at gun point.

"It lasted just one minute, but it was enough to feel the fear of dying," Hamsik told Il Corriere Dello Sport.

"It was terrible and I was shocked.

"However, I am feeling OK now. It's all behind me and I hope to forget about it soon."

Reports in Italy suggest Hamsik has been allowed to return to Slovakia for an early Christmas holiday by Napoli and thus he will not feature during this weekend's clash against Torino.


Friday, December 12, 2008

Sol hate taunts thug 'is a cop'

ONE of the thugs being hunted over obscene chants at soccer star Sol Campbell is thought to be a COP.

Earlier this week police issued pictures of 16 Tottenham fans who allegedly subjected Campbell to a tirade of abuse.

They have already arrested two of the mob — and are set to question a further seven suspects.

The group are accused of shouting racist and homophobic abuse at the former Tottenham defender when their team played Portsmouth in September.

Yesterday Essex Police admitted they were liaising with their counterparts in Hampshire over claims that one of their officers was in the group.

The PC, who is in his early 20s, only recently joined the force after completing his basic training.

Cops began probing the sick songs targeted at former England centre-back Campbell, 34, who became a hate figure to Spurs fans after he left White Hart Lane to join North London rivals Arsenal in 2001.

Last night a former friend of the �cop� in the mob said: �The last time we spoke he was training to be a police officer and planned to join Essex Police.

�I knew he was a Tottenham supporter and I knew he was a bit of a lout so for him to be involved in this, it does not surprise me.�

A 28-year-old from Ringwood, Hants, and a 36-year-old from Wokingham, Berks, arrested in connection with the inquiry were yesterday released on bail until January 21.

Police are still looking to identify the remaining suspects.

A spokesman said: �Officers have received a steady stream of information and names.�


Man-Ho Has New Lady-Ho

Portsmouth striker Jermaine Defoe, already voted Man Whore of the Year by Kickette after his dalliances with everyone from Danielle Lloyd to David Beckham’s sister Joanne, has a freshly minted new WAG…and this one sounds like a keeper.

Chantelle Houghton (the orange tinted young lady pictured above) is, of course, a model and perhaps most notable for winning UK Celebrity Big Brother 2006 over the likes of Dennis Rodman, Traci Bingham, and a person named Maggot. Though only 25 years old, she is already once divorced (she met her husband on Celebrity Big Brother…no, it wasn’t Rodman). She got her start in modelling after her mother took some topless pictures of her at a local park.

Let me repeat that: she got her start in modelling after her mother took some topless pictures of her at a local park. And from a start as classy as that, there really is only one logical career choice: Paris Hilton look-alike. That’s right, Ms. Houghton worked for an agency that hired her out as a Paris Hilton look-alike — a resemblance that later earned her the nickname of “Parish Travelodge.”

Yes, friends, this truly is a match made in heaven…or maybe some kind of STD filled hot tub.