Euro 2012 – Ukraine and Poland

January 28, 2004

Croatia freeze out Biscan

Filed under: EURO 2004 — Ivan @ 12:23 pm

The News Review:

* Euro 2004 security queried
* De Boer hoping for twin success with club and country
* Uefa to hear Wales appeal
* Croatia freeze out Biscan
* Whistle-blowing all the way to Euro 2004
* Football mourns the death of Feher
* RTÉ Sport: Arsenal snap up winger Reyes
* Bazzani’s striking success
* Hedman loaned to Italian club
* Watered down deal to earn Ferguson $10 million a year
* Bellamy: Surgeon ‘saved my career’
* Leeds bidders mask identity
* UEFA Futsal C’ship – News & Features
* Spartak Moscow to appeal against Titov doping case
* Venue and media workshop in Nyon

Euro 2004 security queried
Taipei Times – Jan 27, 2004
“We often have to use our own cellphones to call the station when we’re out on duty,” he said. New riot gear hasn’t arrived yet, though the government says it will be in place by March. Crucially, an integrated communications system which for the first time will allow Portugal’s emergency services — police, the fire service and the ambulance service — to talk to each other directly over the same frequency will not be ready in time for Euro 2004. The government recently pledged to hire another 1,200 officers to beef up the police force. But that won’t be much help — the police training course lasts one year. “We’re pretty gloomy,” Ramos said. Portugal is patrolled by two police forces — an urban force known by its acronym PSP, and, outside major towns and cities, the Guarda Nacional Republicana, or GNR, a semi-military force like Italy’s carabinieri.

De Boer hoping for twin success with club and country
Sunday Times – The Sunday Times – Jan 27, 2004
The twin powers of Holland’s golden generation are now reunited again at Ibrox. Frank de Boer signed for Rangers last night until the end of the season in a surprise move that is motivated more by his desire to play in this summer’s European Championship finals than a need to be with his brother. It is the third time that the 33-year-old twins will have played alongside each other, after both playing for Ajax and Barcelona, but the most capped footballer in Dutch history has been forced to take a detour to Glasgow to rescue his hopes of playing in Euro 2004. De Boer’s contract was terminated at the weekend by Galatasaray, after six unhappy months at the Turkish club, and Rangers will provide him with a chance to remain in action and in the plans of Dick Advocaat, the Holland coach, who, of course, was previously manager with Rangers. The player flew into Glasgow yesterday with Rob Cohen, his agent and father-in-law, and met Alex McLeish before being given a medical at Murray Park and completing his move. He gave an official press conference there last night, but, in keeping with his image as a single-minded man, released the news first via his own website… “Although I have only signed until the end of the season, I still feel I have another two or three years left at the highest level and I am very lucky a big club like Rangers have shown such faith in me. ” McLeish, confirming that De Boer would be signing a four-month contract to take him up to the end of the season, said: “This is an opportunistic signing but we feel this is a major coup for Rangers. “We have got an experienced, highly-motivated player who wants to cement his position with the Dutch national side before the Euro 2004 finals. I hope that Frank will be in the position in June that he has done so well here that Dick Advocaat cannot leave him out. ” McLeish rejected notions that the recruitment of De Boer, whose salary at Galatasary was reported to be £2 million a year, signalled a return to the excessive wages at Ibrox that sent the club’s debts spiralling to £68 million. “Contrary to reports that Frank is coming on a king’s ransom, he’s actually coming on pocket money,” the manager said.

Uefa to hear Wales appeal
BBC News – Jan 27, 2004
A statement read: “The FAW has asked the European governing body to overturn Russia’s 1-0 aggregate victory by awarding Wales a 3-0 first-leg win. ”

And FAW secretary general David Collins said: “We believe that, under the regulations, the national association should have been called to account when a player uses a banned substance, as Titov did. ”

If the appeal is successful, Wales could take Russia’s place in this summer’s Euro 2004 finals in Portugal. The Football Union of Russia, who has not been punished, announced it would not be appealing against Titov’s 12-month ban and ?4,420 fine. Titov accepts he provided a positive sample, but he has appealed against the length of his suspension. His club, Spartak Moscow, have also decided to challenge their fine of ?8,840. No date has yet been set for Uefa to hear those hearings.

Croatia freeze out Biscan
BBC News – Jan 27, 2004
Baric confirmed he would not pick the Liverpool defender for his squad after he failed to show up for a qualifier against Bulgaria last October. “What Biscan did was very unprofessional,” said Baric. “Biscan will not be considered for selection for the Euro 2004 finals and possibly for the rest of his career for disciplinary reasons. ”

Biscan walked out on the squad on the eve of their
decisive qualifier, apparently unhappy that he was not going to be named in the starting line-up or among the substitutes. Croatia won the match 1-0 to finish second in the group and
they then qualified for Euro 2004 by beating Slovenia in the
play-offs. Croatia will play France, England and Switzerland in
their opening group matches in the finals. After the incident Baric said Biscan would never play for
the national team again as long as he was coach, a position
endorsed by Croatian FA president Vlatko Markovic.

Whistle-blowing all the way to Euro 2004
Irish Independent – Jan 28, 2004
The international referee, who was voted the best in the world by FIFA for the last five years, was making a whistle-stop trip to the Helix at Dublin City University to launch Coca-Cola’s Ultimate Road Trip to Euro 2004 in Portugal. To the photographers’ amazement, the referee, who has been running up and down pitches in all weathers since the age of 13, posed for less than a minute beside a Coca-Cola camper van in case he caught a cold. However less than an hour later he said what a “pleasure” it was to pose for photographs or sign autographs. In stark contrast, once indoors and addressing the students he was all smiles even joking about his distinctive image. “You mean my blue eyes of course,” laughed the bald-headed referee, who is undoubtedly the most widely-recognised member of his profession… “I’ve a degree in economics but even during university I didn’t like statistics,” he joked. “I don’t remember if I book the same player many times. ” Indeed Collina is often so engrossed in the match that he may not remember which player gets a goal or even what the score is. In one match between Turkey and Sweden he wondered why the Turkish fans were celebrating in the stands. “I was absolutely convinced it was still 1-1, so Turkey hadn’t qualified. ” Collina will blow his whistle for the last time next year when he turns 45, the official Italian retirement age. Interview: Sport 8.

Football mourns the death of Feher
CNN International – Jan 27, 2004
“Last night was a truly black night. Feher collapsed on the rain-sodden pitch in injury time of the televised match with Benfica leading 1-0 having just scored through Fernando Aguiar. However, after a four-and-a-half hour autopsy the causes of Feher’s death were still not known and the prosecutor general’s department said in a statement that: “Tissue was taken from him for additional examinations. Sandor Berzi, general secretary of the Hungarian Federation (HFF) said from the Corinthia Palace Hotel in Malta on Monday: “We are very shocked, it’s unbelievable,”National coaches and officials of the teams in qualifying Group Eight for the 2006 World Cup are meeting on the Mediterranean island to draw up the fixtures schedule. “Feher’s death is a tragedy for football, especially for Hungary,” Berzi said. “It’s devastating to see a young player dying on a football pitch during a game. “Two years ago, Pal Dardai, a Hungary international who plays for Hertha Berlin in Germany, lost his younger brother in similar circumstances… The last top Portuguese player to die during a match was Fernando Pascoal das Neves of Porto in December 1973. He collapsed in the 13th minute of the 13th game of the season. Guimaraes is one of the 10 venues being used for this summer’s Euro 2004 championship in Portugal.

RTÉ Sport: Arsenal snap up winger Reyes
rte.ie – Jan 27, 2004
All that now remains is for Reyes to pass the a medical, which is expected to be a formality. Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger asserted last week that there was just a 20% chance of his signing a new player during the January transfer window, and that led to talk dying down of his club making a move for Reyes. But the Barclaycard Premiership leaders moved quickly to secure the services of a player who has already won three caps for his country and is set to play astarring role at Euro 2004. “I’m the happiest man and the saddest man in the world at the same time,” said Reyes on his personal website,… The van Persie deal now looks unlikely to happen, given that Wenger has apparently used all the cash in his transfer kitty to fund the Reyes transfer. Reyes should become Arsenal’s record signing, with the transfer expected to eventually surpass the ?13million deal which brought Wiltord to Highbury in August 2000, with the performance-related factor key to the deal. It is not known what Arsenal have agreed to pay up front. Wenger had said earlier in January that his budget for spending during the transfer window was ?10million. Reyes scored 21 goals in 84 Primera Liga appearances for Sevilla and was contracted to the club until 2010. He could now come into contention to make his Arsenal debut on Sunday in thehome league match against Manchester City. Filed by Brendan Cole.

Bazzani’s striking success
go.com – Jan 26, 2004
Scouring a collection of Bazzani’s action photos, there’s barely one or two of him not shouting, not gesticulating, not prompting. His fiery style is his trademark, and his toughness has allowed him to rise to the surface of Italian football without coming through the youth ranks of a glamour club. He could not even attract the attention of Bologna as a youngster and started his career with amateur side Boca. Not the Argentinian one, unfortunately, but a local Bolognese club. Thirty goals in two seasons earned him a transfer to C2 side Sandona, where he scored five times in 32 matches during the 1996-97 season, catching the eye of nearby Serie B Venezia who signed him but only gave him to first team outings in 1997-98, loaning him to C1 side Varese for the 1998-99 campaign. His spell there was not a success – three goals in 29 matches – but this did not stop Tuscany’s Arezzo from asking Venezia to loan him out to them for the 1999-2000 C1 season. Arezzo were then managed by current Perugia boss Serse Cosmi and his fiery coaching style found a perfect match in Bazzani, who responded by scoring 20 goals in 31 matches, all the while taking the time, after midweek training, to drive to Bologna for midweek European games involving his beloved Fortitudo… Struggle helps shape those strong enough to. ‘ Bazzani’s style of play is symptomatic of his rugged attitude, which has immediately made him a hero for Sampdoria fans: his typical goal is a powerful header outjumping and outmuscling his defender, but he’s not bad with the ball at his feet, although that is not his greatest asset. He may still figure in Italy’s plans for Euro 2004, but only as a squad player: the Big Three of Vieri, Totti and Del Piero will grab the starting places forward, and Bazzani could be fighting Lazio’s Bernardo Corradi, a player of similar skills, for the role of backup. Representing his country on a consistent basis may not be Bazzani’s biggest ambition though. As befits a truly genuine character, he’s repeatedly done what very few other Italian footballers have ever done by openly declaring the name of the team he’s always supported and would like to play for, Milan, adding – bless him – his distaste for all things Juventus. This goes back to his father Stefano and his uncle, rossoneri fans who would take little Fabio around Italy to watch Arrigo Sacchi’s star-studded side and its earlier, less successful versions. While already a professional player with Varese, Bazzani stood among Milan fans in the Stadio Renato Curi in Perugia on the last day of the 1998-99 season, when the Zaccheroni-coached Rossoneri won their latest Scudetto.

Hedman loaned to Italian club
Telegraph.co.uk – Jan 28, 2004
The Swedish international has not started a game for Celtic since their. But, with Euro 2004 looming, the former Coventry No 1 persuaded O’Neill to let him join Ancona, who are struggling in Italy’s Serie A… But, with Euro 2004 looming, the former Coventry No 1 persuaded O’Neill to let him join Ancona, who are struggling in Italy’s Serie A. After due consideration, I agreed to the loan. “The move followed reports that O’Neill is running the rule over two triallists – Australian goalkeeper Danny Milosevic and American striker Jamil Walker.

Watered down deal to earn Ferguson $10 million a year
The Age – Jan 28, 2004
McManus by announcing an internal probe into transfers. United’s chief executive, David Gill, will hope that the investigation, requested by Magnier in letters to the board leaked at the weekend, will be sufficient to head off the anger of the major shareholder. Magnier, the Irish multi-millionaire who is locked in a legal battle with the manager over a share of the stud fees in the champion racehorse Rock Of Gibraltar, has been petitioning the board not to award Ferguson more than a one-year deal. Although Ferguson, 62, has spoken positively in recent months about the possibility of a rolling one-year contract – and admitted that it was “an option” – it is understood that it pales in comparison with his original informal offer. The club’s former chief executive, Peter Kenyon, opened talks with Ferguson last season on a four-year deal worth $12 million a year that would also be backdated for 12 months and earn the Scot a package of $62 million… A potential Manchester derby looms if City can get past Tottenham in their fourth-round replay at White Hart Lane, with the winner away to United. Liverpool, which knocked Newcastle out of the FA Cup last weekend, hosts Portsmouth in another all-Premier league tie. Wales has lodged an official protest with European soccer’s governing body about a positive drug test by a Russian opponent, and asked to be awarded a retroactive 3-0 win that could give it a place in Euro 2004. Russian midfielder Yegor Titov was suspended for 12 months by UEFA on Friday for testing positive for the banned stimulant bromantan after the 0-0 first leg of an acrimonious November play-off in Moscow. Titov was an unused substitute in Moscow but played 59 minutes of the second leg in Cardiff, which Russia won 1-0. An autopsy on Miklos Feher – who collapsed and died playing for Benfica on Sunday – has proved to be inconclusive, according to the Portuguese prosecutor-general. The 24-year-old, who had come on as a substitute after 60 minutes, collapsed late in the game against Vitoria Guimaraes.

Bellamy: Surgeon ‘saved my career’
go.com – Jan 28, 2004
However, he made his comeback for the reserves on Monday night and is nowpreparing for a return to the first team. ‘I speak to [Richard Steadman] a lot and there is no doubt about it, he hassaved my career,’ he said. ‘I did not think I would be coming back, to be honest. ‘I can never thank him enough for what he has done for me. I have spoken tohim a few times and told him that. ‘It’s like someone has given me a new knee and said “go on, here’s yourcareer”, which means a lot because I was really down at one stage. ‘He added: ‘All the scans say that I am fine… ‘There is only so much pain you can take,’ he said. ‘I was so miserable at the start ofthe season. ‘I wanted to play for Wales in Italy [in a Euro 2004 qualifier] and it justended up being a big mess. I knew I needed an operation, the club knew I neededan operation, but they wanted me to play because it was a bad start to theseason and Wales wanted me playing. It was horrendous for me. ‘Meanwhile, the Magpies have not commented on reports today that Birmingham arechasing their Peruvian midfielder Nolberto Solano. Manager Sir Bobby Robson insists the 29-year-old is not for sale and thewinger has repeatedly affirmed his commitment to the club.

Leeds bidders mask identity
Telegraph.co.uk – Jan 27, 2004
He said: “Huddersfield Town are in my heart and always will be, but I do follow Leeds, as Yorkshire’s only Premiership club. “Local property developer Simon Morris and entrepreneur Melvyn Levy are also being linked with Leeds, who are in immediate need of a £5 million cash injection to stay afloat. Whether or not they avoid relegation from the Premiership will then be the key issue in any further takeover negotiations. Their playing resources continue to diminish: Roque Junior, the Brazilian World Cup-winning defender who had his contract cancelled last week, has secured a short-term deal with Italian club Siena. Other outgoing deals before the end of this month’s transfer business may involve unwanted defenders Didier Domi and Zoumana Camara, who have both attracted interest from French club Bastia. Leeds may also be forced to give up their Marseilles pair, Salomon Olembe and Lamine Sakho, after defaulting on a £300,000 loan fee agreed in August. Both players are currently involved in the African Nations Cup… Rovers are taking over the two-and-a-half-years remaining on his contract. Emile Heskey, Liverpool’s England striker, is out of Saturday’s Merseyside derby with a damaged hamstring which may keep him sidelined for three weeks. Croatian coach Otto Baric closed the door on Igor Biscan’s hopes of playing in Euro 2004 after the Liverpool midfielder failed to show up for a qualifier against Bulgaria in October. Craig Brown, the former Scotland manager, has signed Craig Burley, his former international captain, for Preston North End on a short-term contract. Burley, 33, was released by Dundee recently when that club went into administration.

UEFA Futsal C’ship – News & Features
uefa.comUEFA.com – Jan 26, 2004
Every chanceWhile holders Italy, world champions Spain, Ukraine, Russia and Portugal are traditionally strong teams, there is every chance for other nations to cause a surprise here and there. In all, seven mini-tournaments will be played out over the coming week with the winner of each joining hosts Czech Republics at the finals in February 2005. Neighbouring countriesBelgium will be the favourites in Group 1, not least because they are hosting the four-team round-robin event. However, the fact they are joined by neighbouring France and the Netherlands, along with Israel, means the competition is sure to be keenly fought. Good combinationBennie Meurs, coach of Belgium, rates his side’s chances as even despite the strength of their rivals. “Holland will be our toughest opponent,” he said. “But I still think we have a 50 per cent chance of going to the finals next year… “We will have great support but Russia will be our hardest opponent. “Bad memoriesThe squad is injury-free and Savicevic is hoping he can take the team to the finals next year, something his brother did not manage during a brief spell in charge of the country’s football team. The presence of Azerbaijan in the group will bring back memories of that failed attempt to qualify for UEFA EURO 2004™ which included a 2-1 defeat by the Azeris last June. Victory vitalSavicevic said: “Our nation has a bad memories of Azerbaijani football. I believe that we will fare much better than Dejan’s team. Everybody in the country is insisting that we win against Azerbaijan. ” Minnows hopefulOther nations hoping to cause a surprise include Finland, who are in with Spain in Group 4, and Slovakia, drawn with Ukraine in Group 2.

Spartak Moscow to appeal against Titov doping case
Gateway 2 Russia – Jan 27, 2004
But Spartak spokesman Alexei Zinin told Reuters: “We’re appealing. We’re doing it right now and it’ll be sent to UEFA before the Monday deadline, I’m 1000 percent certain of that. ”
Titov failed a test after Russia’s Euro 2004 qualifying playoff first leg against Wales in Moscow on November 15, when he was an unused substitute. He started the second leg in Cardiff on November 19 and was substituted after 59 minutes. The midfielder has also been fined 6,400 euros ($8,122) while Spartak were fined 12,800 euros ($16,240). The 27-year-old Russian international denied using illegal drugs and said he was shocked by the news. “I have never resorted to doping, it’s against my personal and sporting principles,” Titov, considered one of Russia’s most gentlemanly and disciplined players, said on the club’s website… Meanwhile, Spartak president Andrei Chervichenko accused UEFA of bias. “There are certain things I don’t understand,” Chervichenko was quoted as saying by Sport-Express. “Why does a man, who has been found to have in his system not bromantan itself but only a derivative of some substance, get a maximum sentence? Why one year and not six months?
“Why do some skip a doping test altogether and still get only an eight-month ban while others get a tougher punishment?” he asked, referring to the recent case of Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand. Ferdinand was suspended for eight months in December by the English Football Association after missing a drugs test at his club’s training ground. “I think this is a policy of double standard,” Chervichenko said.

Venue and media workshop in Nyon
uefa.comUEFA.com – Jan 27, 2004
They have to have good organisational capabilities and be able to chair meetings, and act as leaders and motivators with knowledge of commercial issues, general football and project management. In addition, knowledge of languages is a must, to help them communicate with their relevant partners. EURO debateThis latest workshop will not only examine the venue director’s role at UEFA Champions League matches, but will also focus on their work at the forthcoming UEFA EURO 2004™ final round in Portugal this summer. They will also learn about UEFA’s new HatTrick assistance programme for the European body’s 52 member associations, launched to coincide with this year’s UEFA Jubilee celebrations. Media tasksMedia officers work together with the UEFA venue director, the clubs and commercial partners to serve the media and photographers at UEFA games. Their many tasks include liaison with club press officers and television producers, preparation and distribution of press kits and team lineups, checking accreditation and inspection and checking of media and TV facilities. Coach-referee round tableOn Wednesday, a round table will take place on issues dealing with the relationship between the coach and referee at UEFA matches… They have to have good organisational capabilities and be able to chair meetings, and act as leaders and motivators with knowledge of commercial issues, general football and project management. In addition, knowledge of languages is a must, to help them communicate with their relevant partners. EURO debateThis latest workshop will not only examine the venue director’s role at UEFA Champions League matches, but will also focus on their work at the forthcoming UEFA EURO 2004™ final round in Portugal this summer. They will also learn about UEFA’s new HatTrick assistance programme for the European body’s 52 member associations, launched to coincide with this year’s UEFA Jubilee celebrations. Media tasksMedia officers work together with the UEFA venue director, the clubs and commercial partners to serve the media and photographers at UEFA games. Their many tasks include liaison with club press officers and television producers, preparation and distribution of press kits and team lineups, checking accreditation and inspection and checking of media and TV facilities. Coach-referee round tableOn Wednesday, a round table will take place on issues dealing with the relationship between the coach and referee at UEFA matches.

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