Big Jim Ratcliffe wants to buy Manchester United but already owns a football club, Nice, in Ligue 1. How’s that been going? Not great, according to Adam White.
Having taken two months to even attend a game after buying the club, Ratcliffe’s ownership of Nice can be described as “hands-off”. However, his decision-making over the last three years – although admittedly indirectly via Rivère, who remains something of a figurehead president, his brother and Brailsford – has led to Nice’s continued stagnation. The supposed aim of becoming PSG’s main rivals in Ligue 1 has never really looked like being realised. In the last 12 months alone, Ineos have sacked Fournier, Favre and Galtier, while also sidelining the popular and previously successful Rivère.
Working at Nice has been Iain Moody, who was a controversial figure at Cardiff City and Crystal Palace.
Full story on that Portsmouth appointment.
“Mousinho will relinquish his role as chairman of the PFA’s players’ board, which he has held since May 2021. Portsmouth said he would “soon be standing down from that position to fully focus on his new role”.”
Transfer news: Wolves attacker Goncalo Guedes has joined Benfica on loan for the rest of the season. The 26-year-old only moved to Molineux from Valencia for £27.5million in the summer but boss Julen Lopetegui has let him leave. That comes after 18 appearances, and two goals, including against Liverpool in the FA Cup game that saw a winning goal controversially ruled out.
Sheffield United placed under transfer embargo
Blades are well-placed for promotion and play Hull tonight.
From the EFL site itself.
In the interests of transparency and in line with the principles of good governance, in June 2021 EFL Clubs approved an amendment to the Regulations to allow the EFL to publish a list of those Clubs under registration embargoes on EFL.com.
Clubs under embargo will be named on this dedicated Embargo Reporting Service page, along with the reason the Club has been placed under embargo. For example, the regulation the Club has failed to comply with.
For more information on Embargoes.
Breach of Profit and Sustainability Rules
“The Return of Dango” will be a headline too good to resist for spaghetti western/ska fanatic sub-editors.
Talking of transfers, here’s some rumours. Michael Olise to play and supplant Lionel Messi? Why not? Even Messi would have celebrated that free-kick against United on Wednesday.
South Coast corner, and Portsmouth have appointed someone who sounds familiar and for whom fans might find it easy to find a chat to fit him. Mousinho, educated at Notre Dame in the US, the Fighting Irish, is the current chairman of the Professional Footballers Association – PFA, and a player-coach at Oxford United.
Plenty of transfer stories bubbling, and Trossard to Arsenal is a significant January move. Chelsea, of course Chelsea, are buying someone, Noni Madueke from PSV for £35m.
Leading the agenda at the moment is Pep Guardiola calling out the fans and players…of his own team.
Let’s begin with the 10 things, with Andy Hunter having this to say about Liverpool v Chelsea.
Shoots of recovery or a false dawn? Both Jürgen Klopp and Graham Potter will be desperately hoping their respective 1-0 wins last time out demonstrated the former. Liverpool versus Chelsea may lack its usual consequences, with the teams occupying ninth and 10th place in the table and a 10-point chasm between themselves and fourth place, but their managers would beg to differ. Klopp admitted there would have been genuine doubt around Anfield on Saturday had Liverpool repeated their tame efforts at Brighton in the FA Cup replay at Wolves. An improved display from a much-changed team at Molineux, particularly in terms of Liverpool’s pressing and energy, left Klopp with major selection dilemmas for Saturday as well as renewed optimism. Potter was simply relieved after Chelsea secured only a second win in 10 games last weekend against Crystal Palace. Mykhaylo Mudryk could be involved for the first time since his big-money arrival from Shakhtar Donetsk as the visitors strive for much-needed momentum. Andy Hunter
Anyone remember the World Cup? Big matches, Lionel Messi, Gianni Infantino, the best World Cup ever supposedly, and only a month ago on Wednesday. And yet amid a blizzard of domestic football, it’s all but forgotten. Well, mostly. This is a BIG weekend, and one that closes with Arsenal v Manchester United on Sunday, a match that used to be the biggest in the Premier League but has lately lost its sheen compared to those Manchester City v Liverpool grand slams. Plenty to come on that, though a lack of Casemiro has that showpiece tipped towards the leaders.
What else? Only bloody Liverpool v Chelsea on Saturday lunchtime. Jurgen Klopp’s wounded animals against Todd Boehly’s all-stars. Then to the 3pms, with Bournemouth v Nottingham Forest a relegation six-pointer. Leicester v Brighton sees Brendan Rodgers’ team on the slide, and Brighton flying. Southampton v Aston Villa is the latest test of Nathan Jones’ revival act. West Ham v Everton is an actual battle of who loses, loses their job. Leeds v Brentford is battle of hustle and muscle, played at the same time of Manchester City v Wolves. Which brings us back to the big one at the Emirates.
All that to build up to, and transfer news piling in. This is massive.