Euro 2012 – Ukraine and Poland

September 18, 2003

Injured Vieri misses Arsenal clash

Filed under: EURO 2004 — Ivan @ 10:12 am

The News Review:

* Eriksson opts for diplomacy
* Inside Soccer: ‘Orange’ crushed — and in Dutch
* Scholes boost for England, United
* Injured Vieri misses Arsenal clash
* Government plea over Turkey TV deal
* Riddell: On the road to Gelsenkirchen
* Holders AC Milan owe it to Inzaghi
* UEFA steps up doping tests
* Uefa drops seedings plan
* Makaay makes Celtic pay for misses
* Big names get set for Champions League
* Controversy hits BFU
* GiveMeFootball.com – The Professional Footballers’ Association
* F1 leaves rooms for alterations
* Abu Dhabi woo India for meet
* Fenwick in call-up surprise
* Scholes makes progress
* Anelka triple downs Villa

Eriksson opts for diplomacy
Telegraph.co.uk – Sep 17, 2003
It should be the kind of atmosphere that anyone in football would wish to play in. Football matches should be a party. “”I hope, and I am sure, both teams will reach the Euro 2004 finals. Whoever does not get through automatically still has another chance in the play-offs. Turkey were brilliant at the World Cup and have many excellent players. They have progressed more than any other country in world football in the past 15 years. Turkey may be favourites as they are at home but maybe we have the advantage as we have an extra point.

Inside Soccer: ‘Orange’ crushed — and in Dutch
nwsource.com – Sep 16, 2003
Last week, he said the Turkish FA would sell tickets to English supporters for the game, even though the English FA refused its tickets to avoid crowd violence. PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Adrian Mutu, Chelsea. Not only did Mutu score for Romania in a thrilling 2-2 draw with Denmark in Euro 2004 qualifying, he added a deuce in Chelsea’s 4-2 win over Spurs. MATCH OF THE WEEK: Manchester United vs. They don’t get much bigger than this. Last year’s champions can get the psychological edge on the runners-up with a win.

Scholes boost for England, United
CNN – Sep 17, 2003
The England international has not played for three weeks, with United hoping a period of rest would return the 28-year-old to full fitness. “He’s feeling a bit easier and the news is a bit more encouraging,” Ferguson said. “That was the reason we delayed it. We hoped it would settle down and this is the first sign that it has. “We won’t be doing the operation at the moment and if he gets through this without it, it will prove to be a real bonus to us… We hoped it would settle down and this is the first sign that it has. “We won’t be doing the operation at the moment and if he gets through this without it, it will prove to be a real bonus to us. England will also be watching Scholes’s progress closely before the decisive Euro 2004 qualifier in Turkey on October 11. The free-scoring Scholes, who has had two previous hernia operations, was not missed in his team’s 5-0 rout of Panathinaikos, the English champions scoring four times in the first half at Old Trafford. The biggest surprise was the lack of a goal for striker Ruud van Nistelrooy, who top-scored in the competition last season. KEY ROLEBut the Dutch international was unconcerned after playing a key role in getting United’s Group E campaign off to a flying start. “I was happy the way the game went and the way I played in the first half,” Van Nistelrooy said.

Injured Vieri misses Arsenal clash
CNN – Sep 16, 2003
Argentine forward Julio Ricardo Cruz, a recent signing from Bologna, may start in attack with Nigerian teenager Obafemi Martins. Uruguayan forward Alvaro Recoba, the subject of media speculation linking him with a move from Inter, was also not named in the squad. Inter and Arsenal are in group B of the Champions League along with Dynamo Kiev and Lokomotiv Moscow.

Government plea over Turkey TV deal
go.com – Sep 16, 2003
euroq –>Updated: Sep. 16, 2003Government plea over Turkey TV dealEngland sponsors Nationwide have backed calls for the crucial Euro 2004qualifier against Turkey next month to be shown on terrestrial television. Sports Minister Richard Caborn has called for Sky to share coverage withanother broadcaster to dissuade fans from travelling to Istanbul. The Football Association have refused their ticket allocation for the match onOctober 11 and implored supporters not to go to Turkey. Nationwide, one of the FA’s five commercial partners and former sole sponsorsof the England team, have joined the plea to make TV access easier. Peter Gandolfi, Nationwide’s head of sports marketing, said: ‘We wouldsupport any attempt to ensure that this match is shown on a terrestrialtelevision platform… Banks said: ‘I want to make sure we remove the last vestige of excuse forEngland fans to go to Istanbul. I might be excessively alarmist, but from mybitter experience of 2000 I fear UEFA are looking to make an example ofEngland. ‘I do not want to give UEFA an excuse and should England be banned from 2004,then they will almost definitely be banned from the 2006 World Cup. ‘There is a precedent for Sky to follow. In 1997, when England needed a draw inItaly to make France 98, they allowed ITV to show the game `as live’ immediatelyafter the final whistle. Your views on this story?.

Riddell: On the road to Gelsenkirchen
CNN – Sep 18, 2003
Allow me to explain. Gelsenkirchen is the German town UEFA have chosen to host the final of this year’s premier European competition. It’s not far from Dusseldorf, and has been selected due to the fact that it boasts one of the world’s best stadiums. The Arena AufSchalke is home to the Bundesliga side Schalke 04, and the final on May 26th will mark the first time the European Cup final has been played indoors. The other major difference this year will be a reduction in the number of matches. Most analysts have praised the decision to dispose of the second group stage, and proceed instead to a straight knockout format. They believe that less is more — more quality that is… On paper the Blues are potential championship material with the likes of Makelele, Hernan Crespo, Juan Sebastian Veron at coach Claudio Ranieri’s disposal. Serious repercussionsBut it’s asking an awful lot for them all to gel so quickly. Watch out for the home tie against Besiktas by the way — any trouble there could have serious repercussions for the Euro 2004 qualifier between Turkey and England the following week. When you’re talking tough draws, Arsenal and Inter Milan must feel pretty hard done by. For big teams to get handed two trips to Eastern Europe (Kiev and Moscow) in the middle of winter is unfortunate. Arsenal have seen previous campaigns falter in similar landscapes, and they know the non-flying Dutchman Dennis Bergkamp will once again be twiddling his thumbs. At this stage, the clash of the opening round will concern Manchester United and Glasgow Rangers — a so-called ‘battle of Britain’.

Holders AC Milan owe it to Inzaghi
CNN – Sep 17, 2003
In the other Group H match, Club Bruges ended with nine men in a 1-1 draw with Celta Vigo. Carlo Ancelotti’s Milan side had goalkeeper Dida to thank for a magnificent save in injury time to keep out a close-range strike from Ajax midfielder Rafael van der Vaart, minutes after Milan midfielder Gattuso had been sent off. It was a hairy end to the night for Milan and until Inzaghi’s strike, his sixth in four games including his goals for Italy in recent Euro 2004 qualifiers, Ajax had produced the better chances. The win was not a spectacular opening to the European season for Milan but they still managed to display the combination of attractive football, determination and luck that guided them to last season’s title. Ajax, beaten in the quarter-finals by Milan last term, showed they will again be a difficult side to beat although they will regret not making more of their extensive possession. The Dutch side, displaying their classic passing game, had the best chances of the first half with the influential Rafael van der Vaart striking the bar with a free-kick in the 25th minute before Dida was forced into a diving save to keep out a Zlatan Ibrahimovic header. Milan’s main inspiration came from 21-year-old Brazilian Kaka, making an impressive Champions League debut after being selected ahead of Portugal’s Rui Costa.

UEFA steps up doping tests
uefa.comUEFA.com – Sep 18, 2003
Total of 616 playersThe UEFA Executive Committee heard at its meeting in Bratislava, Slovakia that a total of 616 players at 154 matches will be tested throughout UEFA’s competitions. This total includes the 31 controls to be conducted at the UEFA EURO 2004™ final round, but not any out-of-competition controls. Better controlThe Executive Committee decided last December that a 30 per cent increase in dope tests was necessary. “We hope that these efforts will lead to a better control, and will bring about a situation where we can say that football is keeping the problem to a minimum,” said UEFA Chief Executive Gerhard Aigner. A total of 51 controls will be conducted at UEFA Champions League matches and 29 at UEFA Cup games.

Uefa drops seedings plan
BBC News – Sep 17, 2003
England, Scotland, the Republic of Ireland and Wales could all contest the five places for the finals on offer to the 10 group runners-up. The news will especially boost Wales and Scotland, whose lower ranking would have handed them a difficult tie. The decision was taken at a meeting of Uefa’s executive committee in
Bratislava, Slovakia. Uefa communications director Mike Lee said: “The Uefa executive committee decided unanimously to maintain the system of no seeding for the play-off draw procedure… Wales’ black players were also subjected to racist chanting during their Euro 2004 qualifier in Belgrade in August, which Serbia & Montenegro won 1-0. Then earlier this month, Welsh fans complained that they were pelted with missiles by Italian fans inside the San Siro stadium during Wales’ 4-0 loss to Italy. A Uefa spokesman would not comment on what the penalties could be if either FA was found guilty.

Makaay makes Celtic pay for misses
Telegraph.co.uk – Sep 17, 2003
Martin O’Neill’s men kept going forward at every opportunity and Chris Sutton, demonstrating his versatility in a central midfield role, almost located the balding head of Hartson with a neat left-footed cross under pressure while Sutton himself was only inches from connecting with a dangerous ball to the near post from Didier Agathe. The 5,000 visiting supporters laughed en masse as Michael Ballack, who broke Scottish hearts by scoring a penalty in the recent Euro 2004 qualifier, wasted a glorious shooting chance on the edge of the area, while Makaay was equally profligate when putting a low drive wide from the 18-yard line. The Swede should at least have been forced into his first real save three minutes after the break when a Ze Roberto corner was flicked on at the near post by Thomas Linke to the unmarked Willy Sagnol but the French full-back’s header from inside the six-yard box was off the mark. Celtic had another escape soon after when a Makaay chip across the area found Ze Roberto near the penalty spot but the Brazilian’s glancing header skidded past the far upright. They proved costly misses as Celtic silenced the home supporters by scoring from their first meaningful second-half raid… The 5,000 visiting supporters laughed en masse as Michael Ballack, who broke Scottish hearts by scoring a penalty in the recent Euro 2004 qualifier, wasted a glorious shooting chance on the edge of the area, while Makaay was equally profligate when putting a low drive wide from the 18-yard line. The Swede should at least have been forced into his first real save three minutes after the break when a Ze Roberto corner was flicked on at the near post by Thomas Linke to the unmarked Willy Sagnol but the French full-back’s header from inside the six-yard box was off the mark. Celtic had another escape soon after when a Makaay chip across the area found Ze Roberto near the penalty spot but the Brazilian’s glancing header skidded past the far upright. They proved costly misses as Celtic silenced the home supporters by scoring from their first meaningful second-half raid. Agathe’s teasing cross was aimed for Hartson but the big Welshman could not rise high enough to meet it but his presence distracted Kahn enough for Thompson to slip in unnoticed at the far post and direct a smart diving header in off the upright.

Big names get set for Champions League
Taipei Times – Sep 16, 2003
With Chelsea, it is difficult to know, because they have bought so many players. But I would certainly say that United are one of the favorites to win it. ”
Inter could be without striker Christian Vieri, who sustained an ankle injury in Italy’s Euro 2004 qualifier draw against Serbia and Montenegro. He missed Sunday’s match at Siena. “The game against Inter is vital for us,” Wenger said. “We start with maybe the biggest opponents of the group, and to begin with a victory is crucial. ”
Defending champion AC Milan hosts Ajax today in Group H, and Celta de Vigo travel to Belgium to play FC Bruges, runner-up to champion Liverpool in 1978.

Controversy hits BFU
Sofia Echo – Sep 18, 2003
JUST a few days after the national team qualified for the final stage of the European championship, Bulgarian football was shaken by new controversies. Unexpectedly, the press office of the Bulgarian Football Union (BFU) announced that former BFU chief executive Ivan Vutsov had not appointed himself the coach of the Plamen Markov team. Vutsov now is responsible only for the national teams of the country, but still is considered as the most powerful person in Bulgarian football. That is why the declaration of the BFU was so shocking. It meant that Vutsov no longer is the Cardinal of the old house on Karnigradska Street, the union’s headquarters. What’s more, the letter came after the boss of the BFU Ivan Slavkov, a close associate of Vutsov, praised him for his big contribution for reaching the finals of Euro 2004 in Portugal… As is well known, in early May the owners of the big Bulgarian clubs demanded that Vutsov be removed, and that a congress be held in July at which drastic changes in the BFU would be made. Slavkov intervened to save Vutsov, and postponed the congress to December. He expected that the national team would qualify for Euro 2004, and that this would save him and Vutsov. He expected, as well, that club bosses would forget for their demands, and that the duo would continue to rule football in Bulgaria. However Slavkov’s plans were ruined just a few days after the glorious win in Andora and after Belgium beat Croatia in Brussels. This means that nobody can predict what will happen at the congress. It is evident that the opposition has gained in certain positions in the BFU, which would have been impossible just a few months ago when Vutsov had absolute control of the Union.

GiveMeFootball.com – The Professional Footballers’ Association
GiveMeFootball.com – Sep 17, 2003
We are expected to win every competition we ever compete in. I'm sure we'll meet United in the final at some point over the next few years, but it's not something I'm thinking about now. "

Beckham added: "This team not only can play great football but hard, attacking football too – and we have lots of character. "

Both Celtic and Bayern Munich go into their opening Champions League clash with injury worries but the Scots remain confident of getting some sort of result in Germany's Olympic Stadium, and Stilian Petrov even insists 'we are going there to win'. Martin O'Neill is definitely without skipper Paul Lambert and defender Stephen Crainey and there are also doubts over the fitness of Joos Valgaeren, Johan Mjallby and Ulrik Laursen, who all missed Saturday's win at Dundee. Bayern have their problems too though as Sebastian Deisler, Alexander Zickler and Jens Jeremies are definitely ruled out while Michael Ballack, Willy Sagnol, Claudio Pizarro, Ze Roberto and Bastian Schweinsteiger are all considered doubtful.

F1 leaves rooms for alterations
go.com – Sep 18, 2003
You might not want to rely on it to book a holiday; Easter?should be in April but may be moved to June. August BankHoliday? Could yet be canceled. The 17 race calendar that Formula One published last weeksounded a bit like that, peppered as it was with asterisks andfootnotes. It listed new races in China and Bahrain, a provisionalreturn to Belgium after a year’s absence and no space forAustria or Canada… The samewill apply to India and in some instances Turkey and Bahrain. The truth is that the calendar is a moving minefield. It aims to avoid clashes with other sports, although theBritish Grand Prix is the same day as the Euro 2004 soccer finaland the Wimbledon men’s singles final, and take into accountlocal weather conditions and logistics. Uncertainty is good for nobody. “You wonder how anybody has been selling tickets for nextyear, not fully knowing the dates,” said Martin Brundle,television commentator and chairman of Silverstone’s owners theBritish Racing Drivers’ Club. “It really compromises the promoters. I know from a fewyears back at Silverstone, it costs a quarter of a millionpounds to reprint tickets for another date.

Abu Dhabi woo India for meet
Calcutta Telegraph – Sep 18, 2003
?We have made a good start to the season and now we have to maintain it,? Anelka said. ?We are in third place and that is something for us to fight for and hold onto if we can. ?

Scholes boost

Manchester: Manchester United midfielder Paul Scholes does not need a hernia operation and could be fit for England?s Euro 2004 clash in Turkey next month. It had been feared Scholes might need a third hernia operation, which would have kept him out of action for at least a month ? ruling him out of the Istanbul match on October 11. Sport on Screen
Soccer, Uefa Champions League ? from 10. 30 am
on ESPN
Cricket, Pakistan vs Bangladesh ? Fourth ODI, live from
1. 30 pm on TEN Sports
Cricket, Awards show ? The Wisden International Awards 2003,
from 8.

Fenwick in call-up surprise
Edinburgh Evening News – Sep 18, 2003
But Canada’s new head coach, former Hearts star Colin Miller, has selected Fenwick to play in a friendly against Finland in Tampere on October 11, the same day as Scotland face Lithuania at Hampden in their Euro 2004 showdown. Fenwick has been capped 31 times and played for Canada against Cuba in the Gold Cup in Boston in July, but today he revealed he’d been taken aback to be named in Miller’s squad. He said: “I’m pleasantly surprised to be selected to play for the Canadian national side as I have not been playing first team football this season. This will be the first time I have played against Finland so it will be an interesting experience to play them at home. Jarkko Wiss has already given me a list of things I’ve to pick up for him over there… ” While Fenwick hasn’t been part of Williamson’s plans so far this season, the Hibs boss today revealed he has no intention of making changes to the central defensive partnership of Mathias Doumbe and Colin Murdock despite the fact he’s been robbed of the services of Gary Smith for at least two months following his appendix operation. The Northern Ireland star has suffered a torrid time since his move from Preston North End but Williamson again today underlined his faith in the 28-year-old stopper. He said: “I keep telling people not to judge others too early. Colin has played one-and-a-half games in the Premierleague but he’s played international football and umpteen games for other clubs. “He needs to get to know what it is all about in this league and the only way he is going to do that is by playing games. He’s a big, strong boy who has proved he is capable. I am sure he will be a very good player for us.

Scholes makes progress
Telegraph.co.uk – Sep 17, 2003
But he may yet avoid a third operation, which could keep him sidelined for up to two months. “Paul felt easier yesterday and, for the first time, it looks a little bit more encouraging,” said manager Sir Alex Ferguson… He had been left out of the squad for the 4-0 defeat at Leicester and will now be unavailable for the visits of Blackburn and Manchester United and the trip to Liverpool. There was some good news from the game, however, as striker Michael Bridges played for 45 minutes and scored. Bridges’ career has been tormented by injury over the last three years and he has not played since suffering a ruptured Achilles tendon in December. Everton manager David Moyes is facing a goalkeeping crisis ahead of the match against Middlesbrough on Sunday. Richard Wright is out due to a knee injury and now Steve Simonsen looks unlikely to play after pulling up in training with a thigh problem. Moyes could be left with just two goalkeepers, Nigel Martyn and rookie Iain Turner.

Anelka triple downs Villa
The Age – Sep 16, 2003
Coach Kevin Keegan, whose side moved to third place, ahead of Chelsea on goal difference, said: “They deserved to be a goal up, but in the second half, our work-rate, passing and finishing all got better. “I thought everything that was good about us today started around Steve McManaman,” he added after an inspired debut performance by his former Real Madrid midfielder. “That’s not easy on your debut but for a player of his standing, he probably expects to go out and do that. userAgent; if (agt… Totti wrapped up the win after the break with a chip before John Carew completed the rout with an 89th-minute penalty. Inter Milan striker Christian Vieri, meanwhile, is doubtful for tomorrow’s Champions League match with Arsenal. Vieri missed Inter’s 1-0 win at Siena on Sunday and coach Hector Cuper said that although the forward’s fitness had improved since he received foot injuries during Italy’s Euro 2004 qualifier against Serbia and Montenegro on Wednesday, his chances were slim. Roma’s win ensured the top clubs maintained their positive starts to the season. David Trezeguet grabbed the winner for Juventus as it came from behind to beat Chievo 2-1 in Verona and on Saturday, AC Milan and Lazio won 2-1 over Bologna and Sampdoria.

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