Euro 2012 – Ukraine and Poland

January 4, 2004

Mad Brit Diary Beckham’s transfer was biggest story of 2003.

Filed under: EURO 2004 — Ivan @ 1:07 pm

The News Review:

* Eriksson not on the money
* Kennedy suffers devastating blow
* Rio’s drug ban could be delayed for big match
* Mad Brit Diary Beckham’s transfer was biggest story of 2003.
* Leeds’ fall from grace harms Smith’s ambitions
* EURO TOP TOURNAMENT GOALSCORER BETTING PREVIEW
* 2004: A year of reckoning
* Best of the quotes of the 2003 sporting year
* McLeish ship hit by Berg
* Faldo campaigns on Europe team ethic
* O’Neill backs star’s call-up
* Daily Times – Leading News Resource of Pakistan
* Back-to-work blues expected to boost summer holiday sales
* Looking back – looking forward
* BBC SPORT | Football | The gossip column

Eriksson not on the money
Telegraph.co.uk – Jan 4, 2004
On the pitch – though not at the bank – it was. Eriksson’s policy of sacrificing the result in friendlies was faithfully maintained in the stadium where he coached IFK Gothenburg with such distinction… The most unsettling aspect of England’s scattergun approach to these matches is that no other front-rank nation treats friendlies with such disregard. France, for example, regard every assignment as a test of national virility. With their 0-0 draw against Holland, the Euro 2004 favourites fell agonisingly short of a record 15th consecutive win. At least it can be said that amid the traffic of English bodies in Gothenburg almost all the remaining selection issues were settled (more by accident than design). In brief: Wayne Rooney, who would be even better if he lost a few pounds, is a certainty to start up front with Michael Owen; John Terry shades Jonathan Woodgate at centre-half; Cole, rotated and substituted half to death by Chelsea, has lost his way; Owen Hargreaves must go to Portugal; Steven Gerrard was born for the centre of the midfield; Jermain Defoe is the next big forward weapon and Alan Smith is back on the fringe. There endeth the lessons. “Nice work if you can get it,” Lagerback and Soderberg must think as they are examining their payslips.

Kennedy suffers devastating blow
Telegraph.co.uk – Jan 4, 2004
“I am an honest player. It was not deliberate,” said Ganea of the of the challenge, which drew widespread condemnation when it was caught clearly on TV replays. The incident occurred a quarter-of-an-hour into Scotland’s 2-1 defeat by Romania at Hampden Park on Wednesday and followed a scuffle betwen Ganea and Steven Pressley in which the Romanian caught the Scotland defender with a raised arm, which prompted the assistant referee to flag for a foul to the Scots. Instead, he was seen to plant his studs into the side of Kennedy’s left knee – the livid marks were still visible several minutes later, as he was being stretchered down the tunnel en route to hospital – but Ganea said: “I thought I had been fouled but I didn’t hear the whistle and I went in to win the ball fairly… An element of defensive disarray was noted early in the proceedings, as Christian Dailly came to the sidelines to ask for instructions, but this was at least partly due to the Romanians’ adventurous use of as many as four attackers, which pushed the Scots into a back four, and sometimes a five. Berti Vogts, the Scotland manager, subsequently dcelared his side’s performance to be “a step in the right direction,” an undeniable verdict when compared with the shambolic display against Wales in Cardiff in February, but any assumption of progress will have to be put on hold until the Scots meet Denmark in Copenhagen at the end of this month. Vogts must devoutly wish he had a reliable forward of the calibre of Henrik Larsson, who has retired from international football and who will not play for Sweden in Euro 2004, despite pleas from the Swedish president of UEFA, Lennart Johansson. Now Sven-Goran Eriksson – speaking as a Swede – has added his voice to the clamour for Larsson to reconsider in time for his country’s games against Bulgaria, Italy and Denmark: “If I were manager of Sweden, I would go to Glasgow and I would get down on my knees and ask him to come to Euro 2004,” said Eriksson. “I don’t know if the Swedes will do that, but he is a big loss to Sweden and I would do it. “I am sure there are a lot of Premiership managers who wanted to sign him and they still do. Now and then I hear managers say that they would like to have seen him in the Premiership and I am sure he would have scored lots of goals there.

Rio’s drug ban could be delayed for big match
Independent Online – Jan 2, 2004
England defender Ferdinand’s legal team have asked for clarification of the original suspension decision. Under Football Associaton (FA) rules, Ferdinand does not have to lodge an appeal until a full 14 days after he has received the explanation. If that clarification were not to arrive until next week, Ferdinand would still be free to play in any possible third round FA Cup tie replay against Aston Villa – United’s opponents this weekend – and the champions’ league match at Wolves. The FA were severely criticised by FIFA president Sepp Blatter for taking three months to hold the initial hearing after Ferdinand failed to turn up for a drugs test on September 23… The FA were severely criticised by FIFA president Sepp Blatter for taking three months to hold the initial hearing after Ferdinand failed to turn up for a drugs test on September 23. In the meantime FA chief executive Mark Palios has vowed to speed up the disciplinary process. As things stand at the moment, Ferdinand is banned from January 12 to September 12 meaning he will miss the Euro 2004 Championships in Portugal. Ferdinand’s ban was denouned as “savage and unprecedented” by United when it was imposed last month with the club saying an appeal was “inevitable”. Before the original hearing Ferdinand, 25, was left out of the England squad which played Turkey in October’s decisive Euro 2004 qualifier, a move that almost led to his international team-mates going on strike.

Mad Brit Diary Beckham’s transfer was biggest story of 2003.
SoccerTimes – Jan 2, 2004
The player gave Ferguson a mouthful and then the rugged Scotsman let fly at a stray boot in the lockerroom that hit Beckham above the eye. The following day, Beckham wore his golden locks pulled back so the world could see his scarred eye. It became clear that Beckham and Ferguson could not live together at the mighty club. Something had to give. Ferguson tried to ward of suitor clubs from poaching on Beckham, 27, but it became clear in March that Real Madrid was closely monitoring Becks, as was Barcelona. Madrid probably decided that Beckham was its man when he came off the bench to score twice in United’s 4-3 win over Real in the Champions League at Old Trafford in April. Madrid won the two-game series 6-5 on aggregate and fans were left wondering why Beckham hadn’t started the game… A few games in for the Spanish giant and El Spice scored after just two minutes of his La Liga debut with Madrid beating Real Betis 2-1 at home. In no time, Beckham won over Real fans and emerged as one of the club’s most influential players so far this season. The move seems to have matured Beckham who will captain England at Euro 2004 in Portugal. Beckham has urged the English players to steer clear of earning easy cash and to focus fully on bringing home a major trophy for England for the first time in 38 years. Beckham wants the England team to recreate its privacy and not be distracted by the media. From 1994, Beckham had sent in his brilliant free kicks before the Manchester crowd. Now, the Prince of the game was gone, but not forgotten.

Leeds’ fall from grace harms Smith’s ambitions
Telegraph.co.uk – Jan 4, 2004
“Years ago when he got sacked as manager he had nowt to play with. Once again he is getting punished for his loyalty. Not many managers would have taken over at this stage. People appreciate how much it does help the club and what a difficult job he had when he took over. I’d like to see him given money to spend and an opportunity to do well at a club he really cares about. “Smith also denied that he wanted to leave Leeds if they stayed in the Premiership this season. The club are understood to be in a position where they have to raise £15 million even if they remain in the top flight and will have to make savings of double that in the event of relegation.

EURO TOP TOURNAMENT GOALSCORER BETTING PREVIEW
Readabet.com – Jan 4, 2004
So often Raul is the player everyone expects to fire in the goals, but after a dreadful La Liga season, it is hard to envisage the Madrid skipper making too big an impression on the goalscoring charts. Furthermore Raul?s strike rate of a goal every 180 minutes for Spain is not as favourable as Morientes strike rate of a goal every 135 minutes of International football. The final player to be mentioned in this preview is Milan Baros. Despite his tender age, Baros is still a proven International striker with 16 goals in just 25 games for Czech Republic. As well as his tremendous strike rate is the opponents he shall be up against in the group stages… Firstly Latvia are arguably the worst team in the competition and there should be ample opportunities for Baros to find the net on at least one occasion. Second up will be Holland, who if they defend as they did against Ireland recently could make for very easy pickings. The final opponents, Germany are not the force they once were and could have major difficulties in containing the pace of Baros. In the past two European Championships 5 goals has been enough to be top tournament scorer, while just three would have landed an each way place on both occasions. James Millman, readaBet.

2004: A year of reckoning
BBC News – Jan 4, 2004
At the moment, the serious money is on Dundee, but there are plenty others scurrying down the alleyways in a cold sweat wondering just how on earth that great big finger of fate didn’t poke them in the belly and make them face their day of reckoning. Scottish football isn’t living on borrowed time, but a number of its clubs are and age and tradition are no guarantee of survival. It’s not only the good, like Clydebank, that die young. Ask Third Lanark or Airdrieonians. And old Chico’s Almanac for 2004 declares that the Big Two will again flutter their wings and again try to flee the nest… This is the year when the Scottish game has to get a grip of itself and give itself a right good shake. Physically difficult I accept but well worth the try. At international level, in June, we can press our noses to the window like kids at a sweetie shop and watch the delights inside the tournament that is Euro 2004. It’s going to be bloody agony. I’m fed up adopting a team at Euro and World finals in absence of Scotland. Berti Vogts should be forced to watch us grimace and promise to take us to Germany 2006. In the meantime, Vive La France in Portugal.

Best of the quotes of the 2003 sporting year
Pakistan Dawn – Jan 2, 2004
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Best of the quotes of the 2003 sporting year

PARIS, Jan 1 – Quotes of the sporting year in 2003:

ATHLETICS

“I didn’t do anything wrong – I came here to run. I am 34 now, I may not get another chance. But I took it on the chin. ”
Jon Drummond trying to justify his refusal to leave the track after being disqualified for false starting which held up the 100m quarter-final for 30 minutes. “It was a shame he didn’t take into account the people in the stadium and television. ” IAAF spokesman Nick Davies on Drummond’s behaviour – the IAAF was later to disqualify the American from the championships for bringing the sport into disrepute… ” the reaction of leprosy-afflicted children at Steve Waugh’s favourite charity home in India on his announcing his international retirement. FOOTBALL

“It was just a small incident in a football match and I am being crucified because of the recent history of trouble between the two countries. ” Turkish central defender Alpay playing down his taunting of David Beckham over missing a penalty in their Euro 2004 qualifier. “He clipped me around the ear and said something about my mother which upset me. ” Beckham explaining what went on in the tunnel at half-time which resulted in a free for all between the two sides. “There will be no winding them (the English) up. ” Turkish midfielder Hasan Sas prior to the match – Alpay didn’t hear him.

McLeish ship hit by Berg
Telegraph.co.uk – Jan 3, 2004
The former Manchester United and Blackburn defender, 34, signed for Rangers last summer and will end his career after representing Norway at the European Championships in June. Berg may be retiring, then, but he is certainly not shy, as his comments proved. “He [McLeish] said he had spoken to Advocaat before doing it. “It’s easy to see that two and two makes four and I can understand that Advocaat wants De Boer fit for Euro 2004 in Portugal… “He [McLeish] said he had spoken to Advocaat before doing it. “It’s easy to see that two and two makes four and I can understand that Advocaat wants De Boer fit for Euro 2004 in Portugal. “The veteran, also conscious of his own needs to acquire match fitness ahead of that competition, is convinced that De Boer has been preferred to him due to Advocaat’s continuing influence at the troubled club. “McLeish agrees that I have played very well and, of course, he has the right to pick the team but I disagree with his choices,” said Berg. “If you play well and do your job you don’t get benched, whether you’re playing for Manchester United or any other club. “I don’t mind competition but when there are reasons other than the performances on the pitch then it is just hopeless.

Faldo campaigns on Europe team ethic
Telegraph.co.uk – Jan 3, 2004
“I’m surprised that every week on TV, radio or in the papers they don’t give the latest standings. We’re now in March – which means we’re about halfway into the qualifying process – and no one seems to be talking about it. Now maybe that’s a good thing and, perhaps because it is also an Olympic year plus Euro 2004, the public haven’t really twigged yet, but the Ryder Cup is one of the biggest events on the world sports diary. So, yeah, I find the lack of interest slightly puzzling. “Does it concern Faldo that, while the Americans may well reveal a ‘dream team’ at the Oakland Hills Country Club, Bloomfield Hills, Detroit in September, Europe look weak at this stage?advertisement… Could it be that Woods has somehow failed to comprehend the importance of the Ryder Cup?”He’s a keen historian of the game. So I would have thought Tiger fully realises what it means on both sides of the Atlantic these days. But a lot of people reckon he’s simply not a ‘team player’ and it’s baffling that his record is so poor given the fact he’s so good. “I wouldn’t even like to speculate why he hasn’t kicked on, because if he does click, then he’s going to win five out of five. But for some reason, something is holding him back. ” So if Faldo were Sutton, would he try to solve the conundrum over a quiet dinner?”If Tiger was paying, yeah. If I had a player who I felt I really needed to fathom out because I want to get the very best out of him – for himself and the team – then, sure, that’s the whole point of being captain, getting to know all 12 players and, in Tiger’s case, discovering whether he’s simply not turned on by the Ryder Cup, whether it is superstition or the pressure of it all.

O’Neill backs star’s call-up
Sunday Times – The Sunday Times – Jan 4, 2004
Another excellent Old Firm display yesterday under the watchful eye of Tord Grip, the assistant England manager, topped off with a free kick that David Beckham would have been proud of, could see him called up for England’s friendly with Portugal on February 18. Martin O’Neill, his club manager, has no doubt that Thompson deserves the chance to prove himself worthy of a place in Sven-Göran Eriksson’s squad for Euro 2004. He repeated his regular plea for a call-up after watching the midfielder terrorise Rangers again yesterday. “He has been immense now for a couple of years. That sort of performance, if it is covered nationwide, will enhance his chances of getting into the England squad. I thought his goal capped his performance… “Thompson very much deserves the call, big (Chris) Sutton as well. They have been excellent. Not just this season but ever since they came up here. ” O’Neill is more worried, though, that he could be without Bobo Balde for a month due to the African Nations Cup. Balde wants to represent Guinea in the tournament which starts on January 24 but a training camp could also see him miss Celtic’s visit to Tynecastle on January 18. “He’s talking about coming back for the Hearts game and the whole team wants him to come back,” said O’Neill. The Celtic manager also refused to accept Alex McLeish’s assertion that the title race is all but over.

Daily Times – Leading News Resource of Pakistan
Daily Times – Jan 3, 2004
8 million pounds ($13 million). The 32-year-old has won two league titles with United but was dropped by manager Alex Ferguson at the tail-end of last season. Ligue 1 club Marseille and United reached agreement on a nine-month loan transfer in October but FIFA blocked the move because it had not been registered during the transfer window. An appeal by the French club was turned down and Barthez, desperate to play first-team soccer to remain as France?s first-choice keeper for the Euro 2004, had to resign himself to wait until January?s winter transfer window… The 32-year-old has won two league titles with United but was dropped by manager Alex Ferguson at the tail-end of last season. Ligue 1 club Marseille and United reached agreement on a nine-month loan transfer in October but FIFA blocked the move because it had not been registered during the transfer window. An appeal by the French club was turned down and Barthez, desperate to play first-team soccer to remain as France?s first-choice keeper for the Euro 2004, had to resign himself to wait until January?s winter transfer window.

Back-to-work blues expected to boost summer holiday sales
Irish Independent – Jan 3, 2004
A survey of over 3,500 holiday makers last year had shown that the vast majority fully intended travelling abroad again in 2004, with many citing rip off prices at home as a key reason why they preferred to travel abroad for holidays. Spain and its islands, including Majorca, Menorca, Ibiza and the Canaries were still by far the biggest destination for the Irish, with one third of all holiday makers travelling there. And Ireland’s failure to qualify for the Euro 2004 Championships has not dampened demand for Portuguese holidays, which now account for around 20pc of the total. Many soccer fans were still travelling to Portugal to take in some matches, even without the Irish team taking part, said Tony Brazil of Limerick Travel. Budget Travel’s sale starts on Tuesday with bargains such as €99 to Spain, Greece for €149, the Algarve from €159 and the Canaries from €189. Airtours are offering family prices starting from €699, for two adults and one child, adult discounts of €50 per person and two weeks for the price of one. Their sale also include €20 off most Cork departures booked before January 31 and €100 off adult couple holidays on selected destinations booked before February 29.

Looking back – looking forward
uefa.comUEFA.com – Jan 3, 2004
Ever since I took office in 1989, I have used this column – which I have since signed over 150 times – as a way to bring European football, with all its different aspects, closer to the reader and to present UEFA’s point of view on topical issues. Now the time has come for me to write my last editorial before I retire. Positive achievementsLooking back, there are many positive achievements to report, not least in the competition sector, which has grown in all areas, so that today some 1,500 international matches are played every year. Then there is the tremendous development of the European Football Championship, the creation of the captivating UEFA Champions League, with its unique marketing concept and its worldwide appeal, the revamped UEFA Cup, the continuing development of women’s football and futsal, the introduction of the European coaching licence, the modernisation of stadiums, the creation of the European Club Forum, structured cooperation with the European professional leagues, the reduction of the financial burden on national associations and the simultaneous increase in solidarity payments to clubs, leagues and associations, the East European Assistance Programme, which is now giving way to the HatTrick programme which covers all Europe, and the Meridian Project in favour of football in Africa. Football’s credibilityAnd yet, the future is not totally unclouded. Clubs will have to put their finances in order and efforts will have to be made to ensure that football does not become downgraded to a purely commercial affair, that its unity is preserved, that it remains a sport and a game and that top-level football continues to live up to its commitment to solidarity in its own ranks but also vis-à-vis grassroots football… Positive achievementsLooking back, there are many positive achievements to report, not least in the competition sector, which has grown in all areas, so that today some 1,500 international matches are played every year. Then there is the tremendous development of the European Football Championship, the creation of the captivating UEFA Champions League, with its unique marketing concept and its worldwide appeal, the revamped UEFA Cup, the continuing development of women’s football and futsal, the introduction of the European coaching licence, the modernisation of stadiums, the creation of the European Club Forum, structured cooperation with the European professional leagues, the reduction of the financial burden on national associations and the simultaneous increase in solidarity payments to clubs, leagues and associations, the East European Assistance Programme, which is now giving way to the HatTrick programme which covers all Europe, and the Meridian Project in favour of football in Africa. Football’s credibilityAnd yet, the future is not totally unclouded. Clubs will have to put their finances in order and efforts will have to be made to ensure that football does not become downgraded to a purely commercial affair, that its unity is preserved, that it remains a sport and a game and that top-level football continues to live up to its commitment to solidarity in its own ranks but also vis-à-vis grassroots football. The credibility of our beloved game is vital to the loyalty of our supporters, and both are necessary if football is to thrive in the future. Moreover, those who occupy official positions have the great responsibility of managing football as trustees and not abusing it for their own prestige and personal ends.

BBC SPORT | Football | The gossip column
BBC News – Jan 4, 2004
(Mail on Sunday)

Chelsea are deciding whether to bid for ?10m-rated Jermain Defoe at West Ham or Parma’s Adriano, who is part-owned by Inter Milan. Parma insist Adriano would not leave for less than ?40m. (Daily Mail)

Chelsea have made a ?10m offer to Parma for 23-year-old French goalkeeper Sebastien Frey. (Sunday Mirror)

Chelsea are confident of signing Roma defender Christian Chivu, despite interest from Manchester United… (Mail on Sunday)

Chelsea are deciding whether to bid for ?10m-rated Jermain Defoe at West Ham or Parma’s Adriano, who is part-owned by Inter Milan. Parma insist Adriano would not leave for less than ?40m. (Daily Mail)

Chelsea have made a ?10m offer to Parma for 23-year-old French goalkeeper Sebastien Frey. (Sunday Mirror)

Chelsea are confident of signing Roma defender Christian Chivu, despite interest from Manchester United. (News of the World)

Arsenal have won the race to sign Cameroon striker Samuel Eto’o from Mallorca. Chelsea and Manchester United were also interested but the Gunners will land their man in a ?14m deal in the summer.

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