Euro 2012 – Ukraine and Poland

August 10, 2003

Plain-speaking Palios willing to take risks for game’s sake

Filed under: EURO 2004 — Ivan @ 9:07 am

The News Review:

* Depleted Scots recall Hutchison
* Turkish coach calls for more ‘sensitivity’
* SI.com – Soccer – Eriksson under pressure; Ferguson happy to continue…
* Plain-speaking Palios willing to take risks for game’s sake
* Premiership back on the BBC
* England need to practise defending
* Colgan in as Irish ring the changes
* Sport | Telegraph
* Connolly’s chance to repay faith
* Hughes one of best says Speed
* Woodward stands to deliver
* Davis ready to leave Fulham
* Football’s welcome return
* Sky wins rights to live Premier League games
* Round-up: Campbell fined
* Encouraging a revolution
* SOCCER: Petit quits French team
* Lambert steeled for return

Depleted Scots recall Hutchison
Telegraph.co.uk – Aug 10, 2003
Hutchison, the West Ham United forward, arrived to replace Paul Devlin, who returned home after a hamstring injury failed to respond to treatment. At one point Berti Vogts’s squad were diminishing so rapidly it was thought that he might apply to UEFA to have Saturday’s encounter rescheduled as a five-a-side game… Moreover, yesterday’s training session at Dumbarton was attended by a complement of outfield players which stretched comfortably into double figures, with the restoration to health of Barry Ferguson, Kevin Harper, Steven Pressley and Andy Webster. Christian Dailly, the West Ham defender who has remained at home while waiting for the birth of his fourth child, declared that if there was no development by today he would travel north to join the squad. Jackie McNamara, the Scotland defender, would not fuel any vendetta headlines when pressed on the subject of the highly dubious penalty kick awarded against him when Scotland met Lithuania in Kaunas six months ago. The goal gave the Lithuanians a 1-0 victory. “It’s not about revenge, although obviously at the time I didn’t think it was a penalty,” McNamara said. “And we were annoyed not just about the penalty incident but about how easily some of their players went down throughout the game. That’s why we hope the referee will be strong this time but otherwise we just have to get on with what we have to do.

Turkish coach calls for more ‘sensitivity’
Telegraph.co.uk – Aug 9, 2003
And in the wake of manager Sven-Goran Eriksson’s belief that England supporters risked being killed if they travelled to Istanbul, Gunes said: “Football should be played in good spirit and never involve bloodbaths, people getting killed or incidents outside the game. Sport should be a means of increasing friendships between nations. “We should be careful and concerned about the implications [of what is said] and I expect the same sensitivity from members of the English delegation… Halak Ulusoy, the president of the Turkish Football Federation, has denied saying they would sell tickets to England fans who defied the FA’s request for supporters not to travel to Istanbul. Turkey were also unhappy with the claim by Paul Barber, the FA’s director of marketing and communication, that “Turkey’s much more violent history” forced them to advise supporters not to travel. Gunes said: “My personal impression is that any football lover should be able to watch the game. “British people living in Turkey can come to the game, that is their human right. “Those who want to travel is a matter for the FA.

SI.com – Soccer – Eriksson under pressure; Ferguson happy to continue…
SI.com – Aug 10, 2003
With the start of the season a week away, two papers focused on the futures of English soccer’s two most high profile managers. The Sunday Express quoted the Football Association’s new chief executive, Mark Palios, as saying Eriksson might quit if the team didn’t make it to Portugal for the European Championship. “We are not contemplating it. But he might not be here in 2004 because, if we don’t reach the European Championship finals, how does he feel about that?” Palios was quoted as saying. “If we reach the finals, do we win in style? Do we lose in the early rounds or lose in the quarterfinals? “There are so many things that can happen that that would change everybody’s perspective over the situation. ” Eriksson has been the subject of speculation that he might move to Chelsea, which has been taken over by billionaire Russian businessman Roman Abramovich and has hired seven new players so far with another expected in the next few days. He admitted that he met Abramovich but said it was purely social because he had known the Russian’s agent, Pini Zahavi, for many years… “Does it occur to me that that he will gone after 2004?” Palios said. It’s one of the considerations that you have. But, at the same time, if he has done well at Euro 2004 and he tells me he has an offer to go somewhere else and wants to renegotiate his contract, what then?” Meanwhile Ferguson, who led Manchester United to its eighth league title in 11 years having extended his spell at Old Trafford to 19 years, wants to stay on even longer, according to the Independent on Sunday. “I have no plans to retire. I could go on for another few years if they want me,” the 62-year-old manager was quoted as saying. “As far as I am concerned I feel great. There is nothing in me that says the decision I made to stay on has been wrong.

Plain-speaking Palios willing to take risks for game’s sake
Telegraph.co.uk – Aug 8, 2003
In the over-emotional world of England, even innocuous observations about the team or coach can unleash a whirlwind of headlines. Whatever the rumours surrounding Eriksson and Chelsea, the Swede remains in charge of the national side – certainly while England’s interest in Euro 2004 runs its course – and any attempt to approach a successor would weaken Eriksson’s authority among David Beckham and the other ambitious lions. But in the commercial world of Palios, sounding out potential candidates like Steve McClaren, currently building his managerial reputation at Middlesbrough, makes good business sense. It is all about risk management. “Of course, I have a contingency plan regarding Sven’s eventual replacement,” said Palios, sitting in the basement of the FA’s offices in Soho Square. “This is a business and you have to identify the business risks, like this place burning down or a key employee walking out the door… ” Palios rejected the suggestion that such a process would undermine Eriksson. “The FA’s new chief executive is clearly a man who believes in straight-dealing, in treating people as grown-ups with the strength of character not to bleat if legitimately criticised. Unfortunately, Palios will discover that many in football possess the sensitivity levels of spoilt children denied a second ice-cream before lunch. It will be interesting to observe how football’s precious fraternity reacts to Palios’s honest talking. Asked yesterday whether he would contemplate sanctioning a new contract for Eriksson, Palios replied frankly that he would if the coach suggested it. Palios seems to have no agenda bar whatever makes good business sense to him.

Premiership back on the BBC
BBC News – Aug 8, 2003
League Managers Association boss John Barnwell said the return of Match of the Day was “terrific, really great news for football”. He said he was still “massively concerned about the Football League”, but admitted it would be “wildly optimistic” to expect any of the money from the TV rights deal to “filter down”. An ITV statement said: “We’re disappointed not to win the highlights, but we bid what the rights
were worth to ITV. “We still have rights to Europe’s premier club competition, the Champions League, and the money we’ll save on the Premiership will be reinvested in the network programme budget. ”

Scudamore said he believed the new deal would meet with the approval of the European Union’s competitions commission, which had expressed concerns about the selling of football TV rights. The live games were split up into four separate packages, each of which were won by Sky, Scudamore said. The most attractive of the four packages with the pick of the best games was sold for ?358m, with the other three going for ?282m, ?230m and ?154m… ”

Scudamore insisted that there had been competition for the live-match packages. Salmon said the new Premiership deal would be a highlight of a very strong package of sport on the BBC in 2004. Next year would be “great for sports fans across the UK, with the FA Cup, Six Nations, Wimbledon, Euro 2004, the Olympics, and now the Premier League highlights all available on BBC,” he said. “This gives viewers the best sport output from the BBC for a generation,” he added.

England need to practise defending
Telegraph.co.uk – Aug 9, 2003
However, in my mind, specialist defensive training is essential. You will hear all the time about strikers forming partnerships. Whether or not a certain forward will ‘gel’ with another and form the perfect marriage at the sharp end of the team. Indeed, we can all recall famous striking partnerships down the years, Kevin Keegan and John Toshack being my personal favourite. This bonding of two or three players is not exclusive to the match winners. It happens all over the pitch. But in my opinion it is most difficult to form understandings and on-the-pitch relationships at the back… It is difficult to get the balance right. Sven-Goran Eriksson wants a happy ship and probably doesn’t want to put his defenders through the mill every time when they meet up, but I just feel that a little session here and there would be of benefit. With Euro 2004 qualifying drawing to an end, England can still look forward to Portugal with confidence. We have good players as well as some great ones. Gelling them will be the key. Especially in defence. Information appearing on telegraph.

Colgan in as Irish ring the changes
Telegraph.co.uk – Aug 9, 2003
Kerr said Colgan, Ian Harte, Mark Kinsella, Gary Doherty and Steve Finnan would start the friendly at Lansdowne Road – “all will want to do well with the Euro 2004 tie against Switzerland coming up,” the manager said. The visitors see the match as a significant part of their preparation for the Euro 2004 tie against England in Istanbul on Oct 11. “I suppose they consider us a British-type team who will give them a decent match… “This game may be only a friendly but it is important in the context of the England game,” Gunes said. “It is a test for the players and the team. We want not only to win but to play well. “In Saturday’s 3-0 win in Liechtenstein, Turkey started with only four of the players who began the tie at Sunderland’s Stadium of Light last April which England won 2-0. But Kerr’s eight-game unbeaten run since taking over from Mick McCarthy will be under threat from a team who finished third in the 2002 World Cup. Kerr believes Turkey will take tonight’s match more seriously than many countries approach friendlies. “It doesn’t make sense to treat us with disdain,” he said.

Sport | Telegraph
Telegraph.co.uk – Aug 9, 2003
Ferdinand, Butt’s Manchester United team-mate, will also not take part in the game after a knee injury which ruled him out of the Macedonia match failed to recover. Adrian Bevington, the Football Association’s spokesman, said: “Nicky Butt and Rio Ferdinand unfortunately have had to withdraw from the squad due to injury today… Ferdinand, Butt’s Manchester United team-mate, will also not take part in the game after a knee injury which ruled him out of the Macedonia match failed to recover. Adrian Bevington, the Football Association’s spokesman, said: “Nicky Butt and Rio Ferdinand unfortunately have had to withdraw from the squad due to injury today. “Nicky has an ankle problem and will not be recovered in time for Wednesday’s match. Rio is still not fully recovered from the problem that kept him out of Saturday’s game.

Connolly’s chance to repay faith
Telegraph.co.uk – Aug 10, 2003
There is a feeling in the Republic that Connolly “owes” Ireland – he was sent off during the France 98 play-off in Belgium as Mick McCarthy’s side, trailing 2-1, were looking like they could break down home resistance. He also missed a penalty in the shoot-out defeat by Spain at the 2002 World Cup finals. Connolly’s 39 international appearances have reaped nine goals, not dreadful, but just as there is a suspicion he is a good First Division striker who could not do the business in the Premiership, he needs to score a big goal for his country. Manager Brian Kerr keeps his cards super-glued to his chest and it is a question of where, rather than if, Robbie Keane and Damien Duff will play – Connolly will be fitted in around them. Ireland need to win to guarantee at least a play-off place… Connolly’s 39 international appearances have reaped nine goals, not dreadful, but just as there is a suspicion he is a good First Division striker who could not do the business in the Premiership, he needs to score a big goal for his country. Manager Brian Kerr keeps his cards super-glued to his chest and it is a question of where, rather than if, Robbie Keane and Damien Duff will play – Connolly will be fitted in around them. Ireland need to win to guarantee at least a play-off place. Kerr did not take training yesterday because of a cold so coach Chris Hughton stood in. Keane sat out the session because of a slight knock on a heel but both are expected to be back today.

Hughes one of best says Speed
Telegraph.co.uk – Aug 10, 2003
However, if Wales fail to qualify for the finals of Euro 2004, there will be more than a few concerned Welshmen worried that Hughes might be lured into a top club post. “Even in the early days, when we were close to being the worst team in Welsh history, you knew we were progressing and that it was just a matter of time before we got it right because of what was being done on the training pitch and the things he was trying to put into games. “If anything it was the players who were holding him back because we weren’t performing and weren’t really doing what he wanted us to do… “Speed played under Billy Bremner and Howard Wilkinson at Leeds, then Joe Royle and Howard Kendall at Everton. Now at Newcastle, Sir Bobby Robson is his third manager, following Kenny Dalglish and Ruud Gullit. Hughes is also Speed’s fifth international manager, but that did not prevent him from adding: “I don’t want to build him up unfairly but although he’s relatively early in his career he’s one of the best people I’ve worked with. That’s as big a compliment I can give him. “I’m not surprised he has been successful; from day one I felt he would be. He immediately brought more professionalism into the squad. And he probably had to do a lot of work behind the scenes, with the committee and that sort of thing, to make sure things were right.

Woodward stands to deliver
Telegraph.co.uk – Aug 10, 2003
This is not a man with suppressed feelings. With Clive, it all hangs out. Woodward may indulge in the occasional theatrical flourish, once notably leading his team out of sub-standard lodgings in South Africa and marching them up the road to a swanky Cape Town hotel with only his personal credit card as a guarantee, but his true inner self is more prosaic and so more substantial… His days begin early and finish late. He probes and challenges, seeking out solutions even when no problems seemed apparent. It was his call to request a 6pm kick-off for the final warm-up game against France at Twickenham, even though it was a considerable difficulty for broadcasters BSkyB, as it put them up against the England-Macedonia Euro 2004 football qualifier. Woodward wanted to familiarise his players further with evening kick-offs, the staple start time for the World Cup. Woodward doesn’t do straightforward. Lateral is his game.

Davis ready to leave Fulham
Telegraph.co.uk – Aug 8, 2003
The former England Under-21 captain, who was called into Sven-Goran Eriksson’s senior squad for England’s friendly match against Australia last February, believes that he must move to further his chances of playing in the Euro 2004 finals. “I’ve been at Fulham a long time and now I think it’s time I moved on,” he said. “It’s not a decision I’ve taken lightly and I hope the fans understand, but I’m a very ambitious player and I don’t think Fulham have the necessary ambition any more since they sold Steve Finnan to Liverpool… The former England Under-21 captain, who was called into Sven-Goran Eriksson’s senior squad for England’s friendly match against Australia last February, believes that he must move to further his chances of playing in the Euro 2004 finals. “I’ve been at Fulham a long time and now I think it’s time I moved on,” he said. “It’s not a decision I’ve taken lightly and I hope the fans understand, but I’m a very ambitious player and I don’t think Fulham have the necessary ambition any more since they sold Steve Finnan to Liverpool. The club have already had one inquiry for the midfielder turned away and McClaren said yesterday: “I’ve just heard he’s asked for a move and I’ve always said that we’d be interested if he was available. “He fits our profile perfectly.

Football’s welcome return
BBC News – Aug 8, 2003
A season that ended with a Celtic player calling fellow professionals cheats has been reborn with huffs and fall-outs and bickering and boycotts. What a deeply joyous lot we are. Fear not that the Scottish game will let you down, because even if the football is rubbish, the off-the-field activities would give fodder to the script writers of the most morose and bizarre plots of everything from Eastenders to Monty Python. In a few short weeks Alex McLeish has discovered that one day you are the statue, the next the pigeon as memories of his glorious treble are misted by an inability to fill the gaping hole at centre-half left by the exit of Lorenzo Amoruso. And while we’re at it, how those of us who wallow in the gossip of the game will miss big Amo’s headline-making outbursts. Big Alex couldn’t buy – Luciano Figueroa – and couldn’t sell – Mikel Arteta. He has been miffed by criticism of defeats in pre-season friendlies and is spitting bullets at the tabloid press… This time last year I told you to get your dough on Rangers. More of the same in Europe would do nicely with Rangers, Dundee and Hearts battling through too. And if only Scotland could scrape into the finals of Euro 2004. Sweet dreams are made of this. But most of all can we go through the season with a smile on the face of the game with talk of great goals, wonderful pieces of skill and a little laughter and light relief?

Let the players be the stars once again and allow the administrators and the ego-massaged chairmen to retire to the shadows?

Lock the boardroom doors and let’s get the ball out once again.

Sky wins rights to live Premier League games
SI.com – Aug 8, 2003
1 billion pounds for the current three-year deal which expiresat the end of the coming season. The EC reacted cautiously to the announcement, saying theywanted more details about the bidding process. “We are still rather concerned about the way the packageswere assembled and we would like to see that the packages wereassembled in such a way that they were attractive to severalbidders and not just one bidder,” said spokesman Tilman Lueder. “We have to ask for a lot of information on the bids, howthey were structured, how the bidding took place, whether therewas vigorous competition for each individual package… Key individual “In terms of supporting Sven in his so-called battles withPremier League managers, it’s down to supporting the keyindividual of the organization in whatever he wants to achieve,as long as that’s consistent with the aims of the organization. “Yes, I will support him,” Palios said. Palios said tackling drugs in soccer was another priority,along with hooliganism, which has led to a UEFA warning thatEngland could miss out on Euro 2004 if there is fresh troublefrom fans and the FA’s decision to turn down its ticketallocation for October’s qualifier in Turkey. “In terms of the long-term future of international football,regrettably, my view on hooliganism is that it’s a cancer that’sat best in remission,” Palios said. “Unfortunately, we still may well be in the hands of a fewguys who we can’t control. “We don’t like to stop England fans traveling to games andthe sooner we can get away from that the better. Palios backed London’s bid for the 2012 Olympics, but saidthe idea of supplying a Great Britain football team was fraughtwith difficulties.

Round-up: Campbell fined
Telegraph.co.uk – Aug 10, 2003
Many expected Campbell to receive a three-match suspension, but it appears that the player escaped a ban because of the degree of violence involved in his flick at Djemba-Djemba. Portsmouth manager Harry Redknapp has been banned from the touchline for two games and fined £3,000 by the Football Association. Redknapp was sent to the stands by referee Andy D’Urso at the time and will begin his ban on October 27. Liverpool have applied for planning permission for a new 60,000-seater stadium in Stanley Park, less than 300 yards from Anfield… To try and make some amends for the plain red backs being introduced, Southampton have decided to put twice as many stripes on the front of the new shirt. Midfielder Neil McCann is facing a race against time to be fit for the return leg against the Romanians next Wednesday. He pulled out of Scotland’s Euro 2004 qualifier against Lithuania with an ankle problem. The midfielder, signed from Rangers at the start of the season, has a small tear in his ligaments after falling awkwardly during the Saints’ 1-0 defeat at Newcastle last weekend.

Encouraging a revolution
uefa.comUEFA.com – Aug 8, 2003
In some countries, including my own, building one stadium is complicated enough! So Portugal is going through a process of multiplying those complications by ten. Each venue has thrown up its own challenges and the problems have been diverse – financial, political, media pressure and so on. We mustn’t forget that building a stadium is not a simple task. Past reference”It’s always worth using the past as a point of reference and, let’s face it, Portugal was in one of the worst situations in western Europe in terms of the country’s football fabric. It was evident that Portugal needed facilities to match the skills of their players. A revolution”My first visit was to examine Portugal’s bid when they were candidates to stage the final tournament. It was a question of visiting cities because it was a waste of time looking at the existing stadiums… We have never had a tournament before where we have insisted that all the stadiums should be ready almost a year in advance. In the past, some tournaments have kicked off amid the smell of fresh paint and worries that the players might stick to the benches in the dressing room! There is still work to do, but everything seems to be coming together. ”
This article, which is reproduced here in the form of an extract, first appeared in the UEFA EURO 2004™ Newsletter No. © UEFA 2003 ©uefa. All rights reserved.

SOCCER: Petit quits French team
U.TV – Aug 9, 2003
“I sense that the French team is not led by the man it needs. “Santini has all but qualified Les Bleus for Euro 2004 and won the Confederations Cup in his year-long tenure in the job. Petit continued: “Since my operation (on May 15) we have practically not spoken. And in my rare discussions with Jacques Santini my situation has never been clarified. “At 32 I would like a more clear statement. He is someone who has difficulties taking on his responsibilities… “I sense that the French team is not led by the man it needs. “Santini has all but qualified Les Bleus for Euro 2004 and won the Confederations Cup in his year-long tenure in the job. Petit continued: “Since my operation (on May 15) we have practically not spoken. And in my rare discussions with Jacques Santini my situation has never been clarified. “At 32 I would like a more clear statement. He is someone who has difficulties taking on his responsibilities. “He lets time and events dictate things.

Lambert steeled for return
Telegraph.co.uk – Aug 9, 2003
“Personally, I was delighted with the German result in Iceland because if we win our last two games we’re in the finals. Even if we lose in Dortmund we still have a good chance, because if we beat Lithuania at home in our last match the only thing that could mess us up is if Iceland win in Germany, and that’s a pretty tall order, so I think the draw in Reykjavik was the best possible result for us. “Dailly, who even with a meagre total of four goals for his country counts as one of Scotland’s hitmen, admitted that he had not entirely enjoyed the experience of watching the weekend win at Hampden. “I wasn’t very relaxed until the third goal went in but afterwards it was a real pleasure because the spirit in the camp is very good. Some of the things we’ve worked hard at in training paid off and that always adds to the confidence. “I definitely see a little change in Barry Ferguson, Neil McCann and James McFadden since their moves to England. It’s added to their confidence, too, so generally speaking I think we’re in pretty good shape, which is testimony to the manager’s faith that what he’s doing is right for us.

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