Thursday, 31 October 2013

Arsenal to bid for Tottenham target Patrick Herrmann -

Arsene Wenger is to step up his interest in the £13million rated winger as he looks to build depth in the midfield.

Herrmann would join a host of German players at the Emirates, including Per Mertesacker, Lukas Podolski, Serge Gnabry and Mesut Ozil - who became Arsenal's record signing in the summer costing over £40million.

The Gunners boss has suffered injuries with wide players Theo Walcott, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Podolski this term, so will be looking to add more options on the flanks.

Tottenham Hotspur manager Andre Villas-Boas warns Arsenal that their season ... -

"I suppose the fixture list at the moment is in favour of Manchester United as they have played all the big teams so far, apart from us, so that will give them a chance to bounce back, for sure."

Only four points separate the top seven Premier League sides and Villas-Boas insists the league is wide open.

He added: "The league looks extremely open. The team in 14th place has 10 points — only nine fewer than the leaders."

Edited by Ben Bloom

Emmanuel Frimpong given reminder over use of social media by Arsenal after ... -

Frimpong has 683,000 followers and his latest comment caused such an immediate stir, he not only deleted it but followed it up by saying: "Not every tweet is football related."

He later added: "Look what ever you read tomorrow has majorly been twisted. Is a joke what people will do to start controversy goodnight people."

Frimpong's omission from the Arsenal side had been raised earlier in the day, with manager Arsene Wenger declaring the player was not in the squad because "he is still short of competition".

Liverpool forward Iago Aspas out for around six weeks after tearing a thigh muscle - SkySports

Liverpool forward Iago Aspas has been ruled out for around six weeks after tearing a thigh muscle in training.

The 26-year-old, who joined the Reds from Celta Vigo in June, is expected to return to action early in December.

Aspas suffered the injury during a training session at Melwood on Thursday and was then assessed by the club's medical staff.

He has started four Premier League games for Liverpool so far as well as making two further appearances from the substitutes' bench.

Emmanuel Frimpong denies sensational Arsenal racism claim -

Last year Frimpong was fined £6,000 by the FA for branding a Twitter user "scum yid", with the player's account holding almost 800,000 followers.

The Gunners youth graduate also has a YouTube channel and an official website, despite having started just three Premier League matches for his boyhood club.

Arsenal have made no official comment on the matter, but it is understood they will remind Frimpong of his responsibilities.

Frimpong signed off on Twitter last night by saying: "Look what ever you read tomorrow has majorly been twisted. Is a joke what people will do to start controversy goodnight people."

Daniel Agger looks for a way out of Liverpool -

And Rodgers conceded it will not be easy to persuade him to change his mind.

"In the run of games Martin Skrtel has had, he's gained confidence and that has meant I've acknowledged and recognised that he's playing at a really good level," said Rodgers.

"I've always tried to show fairness with the players.

"If you are playing well, you'll play. If you're not, you'll be in and out of the team." Meanwhile, midfielder Lucas believes Luis Suarez's commitment to the Reds can no longer be questioned with the Uruguayan determined to lead them into the Champions League.

Suarez, 26, made it clear in the summer that he wanted to leave but Liverpool stood firm after Arsenal bid £40,000,001 in the misguided hope it would activate a release clause in his contract.

Sunderland's on-loan striker Fabio Borini hoping on Liverpool return - The Guardian

Sunderland's on-loan derby day match-winner Fabio Borini insists he has not given up on his Liverpool career.

The Italian striker came off the bench to score the decisive goal in Sunday's 2-1 success over their fierce rivals Newcastle – his first strike for the north-east club.

That matches his Premier League tally for Liverpool, where he spent an injury-disrupted first season having arrived in a £10m deal from Roma.

The arrival and fine form of Daniel Sturridge in January pushed Borini further down the Anfield pecking order and although he was allowed to leave on loan for the season, the 22-year-old is clear about where he sees his future.

"There has been a squad revolution there but the worst thing for me was getting injured when I was actually playing at the start of last season.

"I remain a Liverpool player, I'm on loan because there wasn't space for me and after a year of injuries I needed to get my confidence back, to play some games. But my roots are still there."

His immediate focus is with Sunderland, though, and victory over Newcastle lifted them off the bottom of the table with a first win of the campaign.

"It was definitely important, not so much just for me but for the whole team," he said. "It came at a difficult time and to get out of that slump is very important. It feels fantastic."

Sunderland's new manager Gus Poyet made the brave decision to leave Borini's compatriot Emanuele Giaccherini on the bench at the Stadium of Light. Giaccherini arrived from Juventus in the summer with a big reputation but Poyet looked elsewhere for the Tyne-Wear derby lineup and Borini suspects there was a clear plan at work.

"I don't know why Giaccherini was benched and I don't know if he's spoken with the boss about it," he said. "We were all saying that it was an English lineup, and perhaps an English lineup might be more motivated for a derby."

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Twitter photo tweak wins cautious advertiser welcome - BBC News

Twitter has redesigned the way posts to the social network are displayed to allow images and video previews to be shown in its timeline feed.

Previously users had to click on a link to see the associated media.

The move coincides with efforts by the company to promote itself to investors before the flotation of its shares.

The move may help it compete for adverts against other services. But the news was only given a cautious welcome by one industry insider.

"More pictures and video should mean more engaging content, which could in turn be good news for advertisers," said Bob Wootton, director of media at Isba, a body that represents British advertisers.

"But what is pivotal here is whether the redesign makes for a good user experience."

Twitter suggested the move had benefits beyond promoting company brands, and described its new look as "more visual and more engaging".

Photos and screenshots belonging to videos posted to its Vine network now appear in oblong boxes, which expand to fill much of the screen when tapped or clicked on.

The change is being applied to the US company's iPhone and Android apps, as well as to its web-based service.

"This will enable Twitter to run more traditional picture-based adverts in users' newsfeeds, boosting potential revenue growth in the run up to flotation," said Ian Maude, of media consultancy Enders Analysis.

"Of course, with any such move there's a risk of a backlash. In this case people will see fewer tweets on their screen at once. But we're all used to scrolling down through our feeds and I doubt there will be any major negative reaction."

TWTR ticker

The redesign is not the only advertiser-friendly change being pursued by the company before its share sale.

Twitter has also announced that it will introduce its Promoted Products service in South Korea this week.

The facility allows advertisers to purchase a tweet that is labelled as an advert, which then appears at the top of relevant search results. The company tries to ensure they are delivered to the most relevant people by analysing user behaviour on its network.

The service is already offered to advertisers in the US and the UK, among other countries.

Twitter has said it will price its shares at between $17 and $20, valuing the company at about $11bn (£6.8bn). That compares with the $100bn valuation Facebook received when it floated in May.

Trading on the New York Stock Exchange is expected to begin on 7 November under the ticker symbol TWTR.

Arsène Wenger seeks instant response from Arsenal after loss to Chelsea - The Guardian

Arsène Wenger has called for calm after watching Arsenal suffer a second successive home defeat within a week and insisted that Saturday's visit of Liverpool, another side in contention for domestic honours, represents "an opportunity" to put things right.

Chelsea's collection of expensive fringe players prevailed comfortably here against a much-changed home lineup to progress to the Capital One Cup quarter-finals, the home side's defeat following on from Borussia Dortmund's success here in the Champions League last Tuesday. Arsenal, who top the Premier League by two points, now welcome third-placed Liverpool before the return game in Germany, and then collide with Manchester United and high-flying Southampton in a sequence of fixtures that will prove to be telling.

Asked whether the loss had cast doubts over Arsenal's strength in depth in comparison with that of the visitors, Wenger said: "Let's not go too quick to conclusions. If you take the points we have made since 1 January, it's more than anyone else. On a longer distance, you'll see more of the quality of the team than in the last two games. It's difficult to swallow what happened to us in the last week, but the mistakes we have made are so big that they can be corrected. We have to keep the basis of our game and go into the next one.

"In football it's always difficult to be definite. People go quickly to definite conclusions. After the first game [loss] against Aston Villa we were relegated. Today we are in a strong position in the league. Do not draw conclusions too quickly. We have [Theo] Walcott, [Lukas] Podolski and [Alex] Oxlade-Chamberlain out, players who have a big impact offensively. If you put them in, it's a completely different type of team. But it's now about how we rid ourselves of these mistakes without losing the belief in our qualities. That is what is at stake."

Carl Jenkinson's error had presented Chelsea with the lead and left the home side playing catch-up against a team who revel on the counter-attack. As it was, Juan Mata added a second to ensure Wenger has now gone nine games against Mourinho – with whom he enjoyed a warm handshake before and after the game – without tasting victory.

"It's better to win, if you ask me," added the Frenchman. "It's a difficult [run of games to come], but that's part of the season. We know the games. We have to respond well against Liverpool. We are in a strong position in the league and have a good opportunity at home, and we have to turn this round. Away from home we are very solid, but at home you know it's important and vital to win the big games."

Alex Ferguson's bitterness towards Liverpool has roots before he was at Old ... -

Funny how the old rivalry between Liverpool and Manchester United still simmers despite the widening gap between the two clubs over the past two decades.

Fergie's book is a case in point. You'd have thought Taggart's stunt double would have a few better things to ruminate on, after 25 years in the Old Trafford hot seat, than Jordan Henderson's knees or Steven Gerrard's claims to international status.

Liverpool are under his skin though , always have been. It's an historic thing, and not just because they were the dominant force in European football when he took over in Manchester.

It began back in 1980 when his cocky Aberdeen side were taken apart - and down a peg or two - in the European Cup by quite possibly the best Reds team Anfield has ever seen. Significantly, Kenny Dalglish, Alan Hansen and Graeme Souness were all in the side that trounced the Dons 4-0 in the home leg.

Given his status as arguably the greatest manager of all time, you'd have thought Ferguson would feel insecure in the presence of no one. That trio though, have always provoked his Glasgow street-fighting chippiness, in part because they were able to look down on his record as a player and manager for so long.

Time has not healed the fractious relationship between these Scottish greats, which came to a head in the 1986 World Cup when Ferguson, as temporary Scotland manager, controversially axed dropped Hansen - with Dalglish equally controversially withdrawing - from the squad for the finals, and then left Souness out of the final group game.


Liverpool's 80s dominance was a factor, but perhaps a greater influence was the order of things in Scottish football folklore for so many years, with even the United boss perhaps always perceiving himself as behind the trio.

As a player he was never on their level, and even in management he was eclipsed by Dalglish and that great Liverpool team in his formative years. The pain of that has never quite disappeared.

Hence his (admittedly justified) gleeful dig at Dalglish in the book for his role in the Suarez t-shirt debacle. And his apparent obsession with all things Anfield.

Gerrard is the greatest case in point, a bizarre put down from the former United manager when he tried to sign the midfielder on two, if not three, separate occasions.

Yet it was the first occasion, way back in 1994 when Gerrard was a 14 year old boy who spent a week on trial at Old Trafford, and was immediately offered a YTS contract, such was his impact.

Gerrard remembers the period clearly, because he basically received letters and calls from Ferguson for weeks afterwards, and used them rather single-mindedly to draw from Liverpool the offer he was always going to hold out for.

The thing with Ferguson though, he has a long memory. And he also has an appetite for dishes that are served not just cold, but his book proves beyond doubt.

London council house raises £3m at auction - enough for 20 more homes - The Guardian

Protesters have taken over a London home billed as the "most expensive council house ever sold" which on Monday raised almost £3m for Southwark council after fierce bidding at an auction.

The price paid for the building, encompassing what were numbers 21 and 23 Park Street, Borough, was £710,000 above the £2.25m reserve price and enough to fund 20 new council homes in the inner-London area.

However, as the hammer came down, local housing campaigners were occupying the building to try to stop the sale. They said 25,000 people in the borough needed council homes and described the sale as part of a process of "social cleansing" in the capital.

The Grade II-listed property was built by the Anchor Brewery in 1820 for its managers and directors, and was owned for a time by the brewer Courage before passing to Southwark council, which used it for housing stock.

Advertised as a single 5,500 sq ft, six-bedroom family home, the building needs extensive repair and refurbishment but its proximity to the Shard and fashionable Bankside area of the capital puts it in a prime part of a borough where house prices have risen by almost 10% over the past year.

Southwark said it made more economic sense to sell than to spend money on upkeep, with one councillor describing the decision as a "no-brainer".

After the £2.96m deal was closed, Councillor Richard Livingstone, cabinet member for finance and resources, said it would allow Southwark "to fund approximately 20 new council homes to be built to high standards and low energy costs". He added: "The money raised from this sale will help deliver our plan to build 11,000 new council homes in Southwark, one of the most ambitious schemes of its kind in the country." Campaigning group Housing Action Southwark & Lambeth occupied the building to protest against the sale of council housing to private developers. Sarah Morris, a local housing campaigner involved in the action, said: "Southwark council has a waiting list with 25,000 people in need of quality, secure, and truly affordable housing that this building once was. In the face of such housing need in the borough, London, and the whole of the UK this sale of council housing is madness."

Morris said the sale of the building was "part of the social cleansing that is happening across London where local working-class residents are being forced out so that wealthier people can buy it up."

Commenting on the protest, Livingstone said: "It's a shame that it appears that some people wish to stop the building of much-needed new council homes in the borough. Squatting of residential property is a criminal offence and the police have been notified."

Chris Coleman-Smith, head of auctions at Savills and the auctioneer who looked after the sale, said: "There was a really good cross-section of people bidding, with eight or more people having a crack at it."

Coleman-Smith said the building had prompted interest from dozens of developers and private buyers from London and overseas.

He said: "We have had all sorts look at it - foreign buyers including a gentleman from China, local people, owner occupiers and developers. There was interest in it because it is unique - we don't get many historic buildings coming up like this."

The buyers of the homes did not want to be to be identified, but the auctioneer said he hoped the properties would be "made into residential properties and returned to their former glory".

Lucas Leiva believes Liverpool made right call over Luis Suarez -

"Liverpool want to keep their best players and he was the best player last year - and probably the Premier League's best player.

"We are happy he stayed with us and he is just showing every week how committed he is.

"It doesn't matter what was going on in the summer his mind now is just to help the team, to achieve great things and hopefully it will finish in a positive way in May.

"We see him every training session and we know he loves what he does and when he gets on the pitch he just tries to help, that is why we are so happy for him because he deserves what he is getting.

"No one gets goals and great performances if you don't work hard and of course he is a special talent so he it makes it easier for him."

Suarez had tried to engineer a move away from the club as he wanted regular Champions League football, which Lucas insists matches the ambitions of his team-mates.

Roman Sculpture Found At London Building Site - Sky News

Archaeologists have discovered a Roman sculpture of an eagle holding a snake in its beak during a dig at a London building site.

Experts say the sculpture, which was found in the City of London before the site's redevelopment into a 16-storey hotel, is the "finest sculpture by a Romano-British artist ever found in London".

The sculpture dates from the first or second century AD and is made from oolitic limestone sourced from the Cotswolds.

Minories eagle and serpent sculpture
The site where the eagle was found is being redeveloped into a hotel

Archaeologists also unearthed the foundations of a mausoleum during the dig, and believe the stone eagle once adorned the structure.

The sculpture came out of the ground "covered in soil and unrecognisable" in September in the last few hours of an excavation that lasted several months.

The sculpture is in exceptionally good condition. Details such as the forked tongue of the snake and the individual feathers of the eagle remain.

Minories eagle and serpent sculpture
The Roman eagle sculpture was discovered in exceptionally good condition

It is in such good condition that archaeologists could not believe it was 1900 years old, and were initially hesitant to announce the find until it had been seen by several experts.

Images of eagles and serpents are typically Roman and the discovery has helped experts understand what the cemeteries and tombs outside the city walls once looked like.

It was already known that a celebrated school of Romano-British sculptors worked in the Cotswolds, but only a few fragments of their work have been found.

Reverend Professor Martin Henig, a leading expert in the field, said that the object was "the finest sculpture by a Romano-British artist ever found in London and amongst the very best statues surviving from Roman Britain".

Michael Marshall, finds specialist at Museum of London Archaeology (Mola), added: "The eagle is a classically Roman symbol and this new find provides a fascinating new insight into the inhabitants of Roman London and demonstrates their familiarity with the iconography of the wider classical world.

Minories eagle and serpent sculpture
The ditch where archaeologists uncovered the rare sculpture

"Funerary sculpture from the city is very rare and this example, perhaps from inside a mausoleum, is a particularly fine example which will help us to understand how the cemeteries and tombs that lined the roads out of the city were furnished and the beliefs of those buried there."

The sculpture will go on display for six months at the Museum of London from Wednesday.

Capital One Cup: Arsene Wenger will mix up Arsenal team v Chelsea - SkySports

Arsene Wenger will put his faith in a mix-and-match Arsenal side as he prepares to renew rivalry with Jose Mourinho tonight.

Wenger is yet to record a victory over Mourinho's sides in eight meetings and is "absolutely" focused on getting the better of Chelsea in the fourth round of the Capital One Cup.

But neither that aim, nor any residual memory of an at-times bitter relationship with Mourinho, will prevent the Arsenal boss resting some big names at the Emirates.

"The team will be a mixture, with some players who are at the moment not getting the games they need and deserve, and also one or two young players," Wenger said.

"I have to get that mixture right and I will leave myself time to decide how I do that."

Mourinho famously branded Wenger a "voyeur" during his first spell at Stamford Bridge after taking exception to the Frenchman talking about his team.

And the bad blood spilled from the dugout to the pitch during a 2007 League Cup final which saw three red cards and both managers enter the field of play to break up a mass shoving match.

Mourinho, who comes into tonight's game bemoaning Chelsea's lack of recovery time following Sunday's victory over Manchester City, is adamant any animosity is in the past.

"We have no problems," said the Portuguese, before smiling when he added: "Unless you tell me that he had an influence on this (the scheduling). If you tell me that..."

"I believe he (Bendtner) is physically ready, a very good player and if his concentration is 100 per cent to commit himself to the cause, he will be a great asset for us."

Arsene Wenger

Mourinho has indicated he will make wholesale changes, while Arsenal's line-up is likely to include Nicklas Bentdner, who is back in the ranks after loan spells at Sunderland and Juventus and a collapsed move to Crystal Palace.

"Nicklas has been away for a lot of time and he was half - when I say half I mean 80 per cent - out of the club," Wenger said. "In the end, he decided to stay and I stopped him from going.

"I must say, he responded in a positive way and that is what we want from him now. I believe he is physically ready, a very good player and if his concentration is 100 per cent to commit himself to the cause he will be a great asset for us. But that is what you want from him in this game."

Put down a marker

Wenger also believes the contest provides a chance for Arsenal to prove their Premier League title ambitions are serious.

The Gunners are searching to end their eight-year trophy drought and hold a two-point lead over second-placed Chelsea in the table.

He said: "This is a good opportunity for us to show we are ready. I'm not sure it will affect the Premier League at all, but you know people will look at you, how you behave and whether you can win the big games like that.

"What is for sure is you that you want to win these sort of games. That has a certain psychological influence on the team.

"What we want to do is to show that we want to be considered as a very strong team and that comes only with the way we play and with the results, so let's just focus on that. We will absolutely go for this game."

Arsenal v Chelsea is live from 7.30pm on Sky Sports 1.

Arsenal 0 Chelsea 2: match report -

They were by far the better side, hungrier for the ball, quicker to use it, and sharper in front of goal. Chelsea's sixth win in October confirmed how they are responding to Mourinho.

It highlighted the contrast in squad depths, a painful reality for Wenger that he needs to address in January. His first-choice XI, the one that sits top of the Premier League, is undeniably impressive, lifted by such stars as Özil and Olivier Giroud. Without those in two particular, the respective creative and finishing forces of the side, Arsenal look so much the weaker.

Three regulars, Laurent Koscielny, Jack Wilshere and Ramsey, began the game and Santi Cazorla demonstrated some of his skills in the first period, including a nutmegging of John Obi Mikel, but Chelsea's second string were still too strong.

The contrast will surely remind Wenger of the need to bolster the squad in January, particularly in attack where they look so anaemic without Giroud.

The Frenchman, whose name was sung more loudly the more Bendtner laboured, came on and managed Arsenal's only meaningful attempt on goal.

It also encapsulated the contrast in squad strengths late on when Mourinho removed Eto'o and sent on Demba Ba while Wenger replaced Ramsey with Chu-young Park. Barring Gary Cahill, none of the Chelsea side were automatics for Mourinho. In the dressing-room before kick-off, Mourinho had told them to give him selection headaches for next weekend. They have done.

They simply reminded everyone of their abilities here, of their readiness for action when required. Mata was man of the match, soon having the loud contingent of 9,000 Chelsea fans singing his name with his passing and also earning applause from Mourinho midway through the first half when he went tracking back to regain the ball.

Willian looks to be picking up the frenetic pace of English football, Mikel and Michael Essien largely con­trolled midfield while Apzilicueta kept raiding down the right.

Mourinho had talked positively about Azpilicueta at the weekend, praising the Spaniard for being patient, for not complaining with Branislav Ivanovic being the manager's preferred starter at right-back. Azpilicueta, whose lengthy surname has prompted Chelsea fans to call him "Dave", responded here, scoring after 24 minutes.

The goal was a reward for his decision to make a lung-breaking run in support of a Chelsea counter-attack, and also his gamble on a defensive mistake, which duly came, echoing the Joe Hart-Matija Nastasic mix-up when Fernando Torres pounced in the last minute against Manchester City on Sunday.

After dealing with a Cazorla corner, Mata and then Eto'o sprinted upfield. When Eto'o played a quick forward pass to Essien, Ramsey challenged, and the ball ballooned up, seeming to drop into an area patrolled by Carl Jenkinson and Wilshere. Any danger seemed minimal. It begged only a straightforward header back to Lukasz Fabianski, who had not followed the rash example of Hart and rushed out. Fabianski moved into a sensible position to receive the header. Wilshere indicated to Jenkinson what to do. This was routine stuff. But the Arsenal right-back headed the ball upwards, delaying its arrival towards Fabianski, allowing Azpili­cueta to nip and poke the ball in.

Mourinho's celebrations at a second gifted goal in succession was more muted, more respectful to the opposing manager than his run in front of City's Manuel Pellegrini. There had been all the usual talk of the old enmity between Mourinho and Wenger yet there has seemed a rapprochement in recent times.

An hour before kick-off, Mourinho was seen climbing off the bus, high-fiving Gunnersaurus, and then, shortly before kick-off, having chatted to Özil, his old Real Madrid player, Mourinho waited at the top of the tunnel to greet Wenger warmly.

The reception from the Chelsea fans was less gracious towards the hosts, reminding the locals that their former player Ashley Cole had won a European Cup with them and that it had been "eight years" since Arsenal won anything. Their volume rose after Azpilicueta's goal midway through the opening half. "We are top of the league,'' chorused the home fans.

They were not playing like it, bowing out of this competition with scarcely a fight. Bendtner, the main culprit, did deign to close down Azpilicueta at one point, presenting Nacho Monreal with a chance but he shot just wide. Chelsea's work-rate was superior, their desire for the ball greater than Arsenal's.

Ramsey worked hard, going close with a deflected shot, but Bendtner and Ryo Miyaichi did little to justify even temporary ownership of an Arsenal shirt. Bendtner, supposedly a striker, even refused the opportunity to have a strike at goal early in the second half, triggering howls of frustration.

Ramsey gamely tried to drag Arsenal back into the tie, and Özil arrived to replace Miyaichi, but Chelsea soon scored again. Mata's class had already graced the game but this was truly special. Controlling the ball with his left, Mata then connected with his right, imparting such power that Fabianski had no chance.

Arsenal fans' desire for the removal of Bendtner was soon granted. Giroud arrived and soon went close, giving Mark Schwarzer something to do. But Ramires twice almost scored while Ba worried Koscielny and Thomas Vermaelen late on. By then, many Arsenal fans were leaving while Chelsea's were singing about Wembley. Wenger, surely, was thinking about the January transfer window.

Twitter's "anti-Facebook" IPO tactics win over some investors - Reuters UK

Wed Oct 30, 2013 4:02am GMT

(Reuters) - Institutional investors who met with Twitter Inc this week say they are optimistic about its initial public offering and see little sign of the irrational exuberance that preceded Facebook Inc's splashy coming-out party in 2012.

On Monday and Tuesday, Twitter Chief Executive Dick Costolo and Chief Financial Officer Mike Gupta met with large fund managers and analysts in New York and on the East Coast to sell them on an IPO that seeks to raise up to $1.6 billion (997 million pounds) for the loss-making social media company.

Closely watched by Wall Street and Silicon Valley, Twitter's relatively conservative offering has differed from Facebook's $16 billion IPO in a panoply of ways, from its vastly smaller deal size to a decision to list on the New York Stock Exchange over Nasdaq.

"It definitely was different than when (Facebook CEO Mark) Zuckerberg came through ... It's the right kind of buzz," said one fund manager who met with Twitter on Monday.

"With Facebook, the buzz was just stupid," said the manager, who declined to be identified because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

Twitter last week said that it would price its IPO shares at $17 to $20 a piece, valuing the online messaging company at up to about $11 billion. That is less than the $15 billion that analysts had expected, and far below the $100 billion valuation that Facebook received in its IPO last May.

However, Facebook had reported an annual profit of $1 billion and revenue of $3.7 billion before it went public, whereas Twitter reported a net loss of $79.4 million on revenue of just $316.9 million in 2012.

At the upper end of its IPO price range, Twitter would be valuing itself at 20 times trailing 12-month sales currently, and about 17 times at the lower end, according to Reuters' calculations from Twitter's IPO filings. But its outstanding share base could swell by tens of millions of stock as holders exercise options and restricted stock units, inflating the valuation.

In comparison, Facebook trades at about 24 times trailing 12-month sales and LinkedIn Corp at roughly 30 times.


Fund managers viewed Twitter's price range as relatively conservative, basing their perspective on earlier guesses that had pegged the company's range as $28 to $30. Twitter itself mentioned that it had internally valued its own stock at $20.62 as recently as in September.

That has attracted some investors who expect Twitter's shares to climb after they begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange on November 7.

Twitter "is getting a really warm welcome from people," said Scott Sweet, CEO of research firm IPO Boutique.

"Of all the individuals and institutions I've talked to - which include multi-billion dollar hedge funds - no one has said they aren't playing," Sweet said.

Facebook's float was marred by an 11 percent drop in the stock on its second day of trade and successive declines over the next few months as investors questioned the company's ability to grow revenue through mobile devices.

It didn't help that, before its debut, Facebook's underwriters raised the size of the IPO by 25 percent and also hiked the price range. Finally, technical problems with Nasdaq trading systems delayed the start of trade, sowing confusion amongst nervous traders.

It took over a year for Facebook shares to reclaim their IPO price.

Another investor, who owns shares in Facebook and LinkedIn said his firm is approaching all the Twitter underwriters to ask for a 10 percent allocation, with the hopes of getting between 1.5 to 3 percent.

"It's a stupid game that is played ... if you can get what you want, then you don't want it," he said.

Some investors say they believe management has learned from Facebook's mistakes and are pricing the deal in a more conservative manner.

"It's the anti-Facebook" said a second fund manager, who also spoke on condition of anonymity and is planning on meeting with management later this week.

Twitter will hold its first large investor lunch in New York on Wednesday, and investor interest is expected to build as the roadshow proceeds. After stops in Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Denver, the roadshow ends in New York next week with pricing scheduled for November 6 and trading on the New York Stock Exchange to commence a day later under the ticker symbol "TWTR."

The company founders "are gazillionaires already. I think they're not going to want to spend the year after the IPO dominated by the argument about 'why we the IPO,'" the second fund manager said. "Life is short."

(Reporting by Jessica Toonkel and Olivia Oran in New York and Ross Kerber in Boston; Editing by Tim Dobbyn)

Arsenal v Chelsea: live -

90 mins: Ramires gets the ball outside the box, shifts it and whips a good shot over. All the drama is elswehere - Leicester have scored to make it 4-3 at the King Power Stadium, sub Lloyd Dyer with an 89th minute goal that could be an embarrassment to Fulham. Brum 2 Stoke 3 also looks a good 'un. United comfortably beating the Canaries.

89 mins: Santi flashes a drive wide after a good run. Four more minutes.

86 mins: Yeah, so.... Arsenal still tipping and tapping away. Not to any great effect, although they all look quite bright and up for it.

83 mins: This game feels over to me, but Chelsea still knocking on the door. Good low cross scrambled out. Ramsey off and Park Chu-Young on. Him I don't know. He's South Korean. He signed for the Arsenal in August 2011 and has been on loan at Celta Vigo. He's a 28-year-old forward. Probably not going to be one we'll be talking of in years to come, but perhaps he's a late bloomer.

79 mins: Bit of a shame, the career of Demba Ba, although a sign of the times. He was ruddy marvellous for the Mags, I thought, but now he hardly plays, and never scores. I expect a young gentleman from abroad with money in his pocket can find ways to enjoy himself in London, but still. Seems rather a waste. Hasn't scored a goal since April, this will be his tenth game sans nettage if he doesn't get one in the next ten minutes.

78 mins: Azpilicueta, Luiz and Eto'o are all having treatment for cramp. Bloody part-timers. Oh. They are. Eto'o becomes Chelsea's second sub, Demba Ba comes on. Taking his own sweet time, I should add.

E-mailMubita: "Chelsea too good for arsenal. This also shows that arsenal may not go very far with leading the log table!" This could be a rare case where the log table does lie, it's true.

75 mins: World Class Wilshere fires well over.

73 mins: Essien brings down Koscielny, who makes enough of it to get the Chelsea player booked. Deffo a foul, though, I should say. Nothing much from the freekick. Arsenal look way better with Ozil and Giroud in the team. Obvs.

71 mins: Essien, who has improved, finds Ramires who gets to the byline and nearly mugs Koscielny into scoring an OG on the line. This tweet below, BTW. And they say these fans don't react passionately to the team.

And the abuse just keeps coming for NB.

69 mins: Good run Wilshere, good hard shot from Giroud but this isn't Schwarzer's first rodeo, and he's got that near-post well covered. Ramires on.

67 mins: Wenger responds by taking off Bendtner and bringing on Giroud in what he'd hoped was the last throw of the dice he wouldn't have to make.

GoalGOAL! DID YOU SEE THAT? Football pie all over his face. Willian knocks the ball down, Mata takes a touch and absolutely mullers it. Shot sir! Right-footed thunderbolt, and that's unstoppable. Arsenal 0 Chelsea 2 (Mata 66)

64 mins: Ozil nearly weaves his way through a couple of Chelsea backs.

62 mins: Ramsey ghosts away from De Bruyne as if he wasn't there, and sends a fizzing drive just wide. Young Ryo Miyaichi's work is done, he's hooked in favour of Ozil.

61 mins: Strong run from Eto'o, Mata handy in possession, Chelsea really do look the better side, I have to say.

60 mins: Spell of the ball for Chelsea, Willian looking handy. But now here comes Santi. Curling shot causes Mark Schnauzer a moment of worry.

59 mins: Just to clarify, the crowd are not actually singing Nirvana. Good spell for Arsenal, although that last move did have shades of the "walk it into the goal" thing. Chelsea seem to have weathered the storm, for the time being.

58 mins: Oh look, the crowd are all signing now. Here we are now, entertain us.

55 mins: Rosicky having some nice touches, a good little move from Arsenal finds Bendtner alone on the Chelsea penalty spot, but instead of shooting, he passes it back to the team-mate. Oh dear. It's easy to get annoyed with Bendtner, and I don't even support Arsenal.

53 mins: Blues having a hard time clearning the corner... but now the berk Bendtner gives it away cheaply and the whole thing grinds to a halt.

52 mins: Arsenal's best moment. Ramsey runs, jinks and shoots, huge deflection, could have snuck in at the far post with Mark S stranded.

51 mins: Arsenal record a shot, if that's what you want to call it, when Cazorla fires well wide from, like, well far.

49 mins: Eto'o fashions himself an opportunity from nowhere, and lashes one of those trademark fierce shots not that wide. No changes at HT by the way, but Ozil is warming up.

48 mins: Chelsea pretty much had it since then though, passing it around with some authority, not letting Arsenal get going.

46 mins: Rosicky down the right, bright start from the Gunners, cross not of similar class.

20.46 Half time is over, Wenger late back to his seat. Possibly queueing for a pie.

E-mailMarc Melander: "The hapless looking de Bruyne hails from a gaff called 'Drongen' which sounds like a name for a mob of zombies or 'Reavers' types (as in from the top top top fillum 'Serenity'). On a more serious note he must be the only rubbish Belgian amongst a clutch of very exciting Flemish/Walloon types currently lighting up the 'English game'."

E-mail "Favourite Wenger moment?" says Joshua Levey. "When Arsenal play vs Man utd. Arsenal scores but ruled offside. Wenger got angry and then he kicks the bottle. then he got sent off."

HALF TIME Well, a few players on both teams look a bit short of full match sharpness, but overall Chelsea have the stronger team out, and look like the stronger team. Not a lot of action to tell you about, to be quite honest. Defensive blunder for the goal. Hopefully things will pick up a bit in the second 45. Oh, and it turns out that Kevin De Bruyne can kill people with his mind.

Elsewhere, it's Birminghan 1 Stoke 1 and goal-less between Burnley and West Ham. Something of an upset on the cards at the Walkers: Leicester are leading Fulham 2-1. And at Old Trafford, United are up 1-0 over Norwich thanks to a pen-al-tee from the Little Pea. Back in a sec.

44 mins: A few "shushes" ring around the ground, presumably from the Chelsea fans. It is indeed quiet.

43 mins: Problem for Arsenal is that Nik Bendtner isn't really able to hold onto the ball, and the likes of Ramsey and Wilshere aren't able to get up alongside the forwards.

41 mins: Mata and Willian link up well and they slip it to Essien who has a dibble that... also goes out for a throw-in. "Rusty" would be the politest word for it. He's only had one other game this term, and that against Swindon in this comp.

38 mins: Not sure if it was karmic retribution for being nasty about Kevin De Bruyne but I just damn nearly choked to death on a peanut. Possibly De Bruyne has magical powers.

36 mins: De Bruyne making himself busy down the left. He is an unfortunate looking lad. Surely the ugliest Chelsea left winder since the Duffer was in his pomp. Sure he's a good chap though, kind to his mum, fond of a waffle and all the rest of it.

34 mins: Samuel Eto'o has just had a shot go out for a throw on. Ah, time, that makes fools of us all.

E-mailMarc Melander: "My favourite Maureen moment is his Groundhog Day 'ghost goal' lament. Firstly because it was obvious to all in the ground that Garcia's shot almost burst the net and more seriously and secondly he always forgets to mention that Cech had scythed Baros in half in the build up and would have been sent off and Liverpool awarded a penalty. My favourite Wenger moment is whenever he wears the cocoonesque quilted coat/quilt combo. A Gallic onesy."

31 mins: Arsenal plugging away though, and they've won a corner off Michael Essien. Essien, I might add, looks bloomin' knackered. Schwarzer gathers with ease.

28 mins: Poor clearenace from Azpilicueta drops to Monreal, who drills a low shot across the goal from the left and only just wide of the post.

27 mins: And one of those moves is only ended by a fantastic sliding tackled from Willian. John Obi Mikel booked for trying to trip Wilshere.

26 mins: Arsenal dust themselves down and press forward, a couple of decent moves right away.

GoalGOAL! Corner from the Arsenal, but the break's on... Chelsea have men forward in numbers, Eto'o leading the charge. Oh no! It's a howler! Aaron Ramsey tackles Michael Essien and the ball balloons into the air, Jenkinson's running back and he tries to nod it back to his keeper, but he ends up just heading it into the path of Azpilicueta, who gets his reward for a lung-buster of a run. Neat finish, but that was on PG Wodehouse's silver tray with watercress around it. Arsenal 0 Chelsea 1 (Azpilicueta 25)

22 mins: Cazorla beats Essien with a lovely trick. Essien clotheslines him. Cynical, really. No booking.

20 mins: Ramsey lofts it forward, Miyaichi's in! Oh but he's given offside. In fact Cahill has played him on. Didn't score anyway, so whatever.

19 mins: Still, here's fun, Luiz has fouled Bendtner. Mark Schwarzer, who I think I am right in saying is Chesea's oldest ever player, gathers with ease.

17 mins: The game has the feeling of a very high quality reserve match at the moment, which is what it is, I guess. Some decent football, both sides at 85% pace and effort.

16 mins: And now Bendtner and Cazorla with some decent work, leading to a Ramsey shot charged down.

15 mins: Quiet period as Chelsea play it about, but here's Arsenal, whose Miyaichi has a shot blocked from the edge of the box.

13 mins: Rosicky with a head-down run, runs right into Essien, who nicks the ball off him and moves forward. But Arsenal in their turn nick it and mount a decent counter, which ends in them winning a corner.

12 mins: Second ropey touch of the evening from Cazorla.

11 mins: Willian and De Bruyne looking bright, and win a corner. Arsenal clear.

10 mins: Arsenal getting into it now, bombing down the left in numbers and sending a cross over for Bendtner.

8 mins: Arsenal somewhat lightweight in midfield without th natural defensive abilities of Flamini and Arteta. Oh but here's Bendtner! Cracks a shot at goal and it hits the Chelsea defender on the back.

E-mailBill Hargreaves writes: "Already interesting reading, Alan. Loved the Bendtner jibe, even though I'm a Gunner. Favourite AW / JM moment would have to be the 'voyeur looking through telescopes at neighbours' jibe. Mind you, he seems to have changed his tune now, kind of like a school kid asking if he can join the prefects on their table."

7 mins: Luiz overpowers Jenkinson and takes the ball off him. Mata starting to roam about, Eto'o making some clever runs. If I had to pick a winner, I'd fancy Chelsea.

5 mins: Lumped forward for Miyaichi but he cannot get there. Not what you'd call silky stuff thus far from either side, but here come Cheslea stringing some passes together.

4 mins: Slowish start. Maybe some of these irregulars not used to match football. Luiz knocks it forward for Bertrand, who isn't far off latching onto that, free in the box. Just a yard too far ahead.

2 mins: Early momentum with Chelsea. Santi sloppily knocking the ball behind with a heavy touch. Another corner. Both of them cleared with something to spare.

1 mins: Koscielny gets a block in on an Eto'o snap shot and it goes behind for a corner.

19.45 Chelsea kick off.

19.44 Apparently a sell-out crowd, so I guess a lot of people had transport problems.

19.43 Mourinho shakes hands with Wenger. The former beaming, doing the "hail fellow well met" bit; Arsene looked a bit nervous and somewhat stand-offish.

19.42 The sides last met in this competition in the 2007 Final.

19.39 Wenger says that they are going to go for it, "it's important to put a good team out that can qualify. It's a mixture of youth and experience. Plenty of big games." He agrees that "he enjoys renewing the rivalry with" Jose Mourinho. He hasn't beaten Mourinho in eight matches.

19.35 Could be a good game this. Nuts, really, the talent on display from the Chelsea Seconds.

19.31 Blimey. Fair to say that there are seats available at Arsenal on that evidence. Unless people are having a hard time getting into their seats or something, but it's EMPTY so far. Well not literally. Although that would be quite brilliant, if the fixture was actually meant to be at Stamford Bridge and Arsenal and their fans had all gone there. Chelsea warming up. Oh, there are the Arsenal boys.

19.29 Ben Shephard introduces a packag featuring Luca Vialli! Lovely Luca. The first trophy he won as Chelsea manager was th 1998 League Cup, they beat the Arsenal in the semi. Oh look, there's Dan Pet Rescue.

19.26 So who do you fancy for this game?

19.25 Not a lot of preamble on the telly. Wonder if Sky have got a League Cup style 'experimental' punditry team? I'd like to see an expanded role for shouting's Bianca off of Soccer Saturday.

19.18 Never mind about that, Thore - Arsenal have got Bendtner. In an all-comedy match-up with David Luiz, hopefully.

19.12 Man United also giving some fringe players a go in their match, they make nine changes from the weekend XI. Wayne Rooney among the men giving way. Zaha in. Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic in central defence though, so still a formidable prospect for Norwich.

19.10 Depending on how busy/exciting this game is/isn't, I'll try to bring you updates of the other matches as much as I can. I see that Sam Allardyce has given Carlton Cole his game, he starts at Burnley in that claret and blue match-up.

19.05 Fair to say that Mourinho has made a few changes - I make it 10 from the team that played City on Sunday, with only Gary Cahill called upon for double duty.

19.00 And here they come

Arsenal: Fabianski, Jenkinson, Vermaelen, Koscielny, Monreal, Wilshere, Ramsey, Cazorla, Rosicky, Miyaichi, Bendtner. Subs: Sagna, Ozil, Giroud, Viviano, Park, Hayden, Yennaris.

Chelsea: Schwarzer, Azpilicueta, Cahill, Luiz, Bertrand, Essien, Mikel, De Bruyne, Mata, Willian, Eto'o. Subs: Ivanovic, Ramires, Torres, Hazard, Ba, Kalas, Blackman.

Referee: Phil Dowd (Staffordshire)

18.55 Evening all. Tyers here. Teams as I have them.

18.45 It's the big one (or as big as a League Cup fourth round match can be) as Arsenal welcome Chelsea to the Emirates Stadium.

Alan Tyers will be with you from around 19.00 with all the team news and build-up ahead of the match so do come back for that and in the mean time, have a read of Jim White's match preview. Here is a snippet:

Jose Mourinho is returning to the Emirates on Tuesday night for the first time in six years as his Chelsea visit Arsenal in a Capital One Cup tie. In the past we could predict precisely what would ensue. As the verbal pyrotechnics crackled and sparked, we would be in for an early bonfire night. At the press conference it would have been best to retire to a safe distance.

This is how confrontations between the pair traditionally went. Mourinho would open fire with some snipe about his opposite number, perhaps comparing Arsène Wenger to a peeping tom. In response, Wenger would look down his substantial nose and, without mentioning any names, emit some condescending remark about how class can only be earned over time.

The match would then be played in a toxic atmosphere that went beyond the standard peppery spice of a London derby. And then, once the hostilities were over, the two would spurn any opportunity for reconciliatory hospitality, preferring to continue their scrap via proxies in the press.

There has long been a temptation in football reporting to view matches as personal scraps between managers. But in this instance the evidence insisted they really didn't like one another.

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Manchester United midfielder Marouane Fellaini says Arsenal wanted to sign him - SkySports

Marouane Fellaini has claimed that he snubbed interest from Arsenal before joining Manchester United.

The 25-year-old Belgium midfielder joined United on deadline day from Everton in a £27.5million move, the only substantial deal that the Premier League champions managed over the course of the summer.

Despite seeing Arsenal in top form, and some way ahead of United at this stage - Fellaini says he does not regret his decision to move to Old Trafford.

"I don't want to tell you everything what happened during the transfer," he said to beIN Sport. "This was done at the last minute.

"In a transfer window, there is always a list of players, you never know if it's true or not. But for me, I knew [Moyes] was interested in me.

"Chelsea? No comment. Arsenal? It's true, they were interested, but Manchester United convinced me to sign for them."

Fellaini says he could not turn down the chance to work with David Moyes again.

"David Moyes has given me confidence," he said.

"When I was in trouble early at Everton, he helped me and supported me. He did everything for me to become a great player.

"I was criticised, nobody knew who I was. I succeeded because I worked a lot. That's why I'm playing for Manchester United today.

"[I am not trying to] replace Scholes or Carrick or anyone. I try to play my own game. It is difficult at the moment, but I will succeed."

James O'Connor hails 'awesome opportunity' at London Irish - BBC Sport

London Irish have confirmed the signing of Australia international James O'Connor until the end of the season.

The back, 23, has played 44 Tests for Australia and is set to make his debut this weekend against Northampton.

O'Connor has been allowed to move to England after the Australian Rugby Union terminated his contract following a string of off-field incidents.

"I thoroughly believe I can improve elements of my game by playing in the Premiership," said O'Connor.

The outside half, who can play anywhere along the back line, was told he would not be offered a contract with Australia for 2014 after a disciplinary investigation found he had "failed to uphold the behavioural and cultural standards expected within the team".

Earlier this month, he was escorted from Perth airport for drunken behaviour.

Australia are about to embark on a tour of Europe, with the Wallabies playing England at Twickenham on Saturday as they bid to complete a Grand Slam (beating England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales on the same tour) on a trip that also includes a Test against Italy.

"Having decided that I needed a change from both a personal and playing point of view, I spoke to clubs in Japan and France and concluded that the best way forward for my development was to move to England," he added.

"Given that I've left my support network back in Australia, London Irish offered me an environment that I felt comfortable with."

Exiles director of rugby Brian Smith said O'Connor was the "most significant signing in the club's history", adding: "His signing is the injection of class we need."

Smith said O'Connor deserves a second chance and believes he can still go on to make a huge impact on Australian rugby.

"James is a world class player," Smith told BBC Radio Berkshire. "He is an asset for London Irish and the game over here.

"As an Australian, I see him as a player who can genuinely go on become the most capped Wallaby of all time and we hope to play a part in that."

David Cameron unveils plans to make London a Mecca for Middle East wealth - The Independent

Politicians and business leaders gathered in the capital for the ninth annual World Islamic Economic Forum – the first time the major event has not been held in a Muslim country.

The Prime Minister appeared on stage alongside a number of world leaders, including King Abdullah of Jordan and the Sultan of Brunei.

Among the measures unveiled was a plan from the Treasury to issue an Islamic bond - or sukuk - worth around £200 million. It would issue fixed returns based on the profit made by a named asset, allowing for Muslims to invest without breaking Islamic laws forbidding interest-bearing bonds.

A "world first" set of indices at the London Stock Exchange to help investors identify faith-compliant firms and projects was also announced as well as a £4.5 million boost to a small business growth fund.

The global market in Islamic investments is rapidly expanding, rising by 150 per cent since 2006 and expected to be worth £1.3 trillion next year.

Mr Cameron said Britain had already taken steps to ensure Muslims were not discriminated against - such as ending "double tax" on Islamic mortgages and introducing alternative forms of student and start-up loans to comply with a ban on interest payments.

It already had more Islam-compliant banks than any other Western country and many law firms and university courses centred on the subject, he said.

But he said that his ambition was for the country to compete with finance centres such as Dubai and Kuala Lumpur - not just other non-Islamic capitals.

"Already London is the biggest centre for Islamic finance outside the Islamic world," he told the gathering of 1,800 political and business leaders from over 115 countries.

"But today our ambition is to go further still.

"Because I don't just want London to be a great capital of Islamic finance in the Western world.

"I want London to stand alongside Dubai and Kuala Lumpur as one of the great capitals of Islamic finance anywhere in the world."

He went on: "When Islamic finance is growing 50 per cent faster than traditional banking and when global Islamic investments are set to grow to £1.3 trillion by 2014 we want to make sure a big proportion of that new investment is made here in Britain."

Dismissing criticism of increasing foreign ownership in the UK - including "taking over our football clubs" - he said: "Foreign investment creates wealth, jobs and growth. And far from weakening our industrial base, that investment actually strengthens it.

Islamic investment in projects from the huge London Gateway port and the redevelopment of Battersea power station to Arsenal's Emirates stadium and offshore wind turbine were proof it was "already fundamental to our success", he added.

There will also be new indices - announced by the London Stock Exchange - to help investors identify suitable firms and projects.

"Again the City of London is leading the way - this time not just in Europe, but right across the world," he said.

"These not only identify companies that meet traditional Islamic investment principles but also use some of the most advanced techniques on the planet to screen financial ratios and enable investors to identify opportunities with lower volatility.

"For example, by ensuring that debt and cash fall within strict limits as a proportion of a company's total assets.

"In plain language, this means the creation of a new way of identifying Islamic finance opportunities - a world-leading Islamic Market Index.

"It is another global first for the City of London and yet another reason why London can be one of the great centres of Islamic finance anywhere in the world."

Mr Cameron said the Government was joining forces with the Shell Foundation to create a £4.5 million grant to boost the work of the Nomou initiative, a growth fund that provides skills and finance to small businesses across the Middle East and the Gulf looking for both a financial and a social return on their money.

Other leaders at the event included Afghan president Hamid Karzai and Pakistan's prime minister Nawaz Sharif, who are holding talks with Mr Cameron at 10 Downing Street this afternoon.

Additional reporting by PA

Arsenal v Chelsea: Emmanuel Petit gives his verdict on the Capital One Cup ... -

"Of course, but the pressure will be more on them than Chelsea, especially when you remember their defeat to Birmingham in 2008 and the effect that would have had on their dressing room. Chelsea will rotate after playing so recently, but the quality will be there. Don't forget it's the first trophy you can win. It's very important. It's not the same in France, they don't take it seriously. They're stupid because they don't understand that to get that winning spirit, that mentality you have to win this sort of game. But you know... [cynically rubs fingers together] money."

Do you see any of the qualities of the team you won the title with in 1998 in the current Arsenal side?

"I can't make comparisons, because that was 15 years ago and football has changed a lot. But I think they need to achieve the same team spirit that we had at that time. We were all competitors, we were all determined to win game after game, without any question. It doesn't matter if you are French, English, whatever, we were all on board with the same target, the same motivation. There is a big difference between the teams because this spirit only comes after you win a lot of games together. Before that happens you have to have strong personalities to reach that target. When you look at the squad of 1998, there were huge, big personalities in that team."

Who were the leaders in the dressing room?

"No idea. There were so many. You would talk to Ian Wright, Patrick Vieira, Tony Adams, Steve Bould, Lee Dixon. There were so many powerful guys, with strong belief. That's the big difference between the teams, we had players that would never have accepted defeat."

What did you make of Ian Wright when you first arrived in England? You must have been baffled...

"After a couple of months with Ian Wright I thought, in my head, 'this guy cannot play in France'. It's impossible, because he's so free in his mind. That's why I like it here in England. If you are a crazy personality, that doesn't matter. If you entertain people, it doesn't matter. Until you do bad things, of course. In France we have to be confined, in a box. I loved it when I first came to England, and I loved Ian Wright's personality because when playing alongside him, and living alongside him, he helps you to forget the importance of football and the pressure you're under every day. That's important. He made fun all the time, made ridiculous things happen all the time. I really enjoyed it."

Arsenal hadn't won the league for quite a while before 1998, how do you become a team that's ready to challenge for the title?

"I remember when Arsène first came to England there was a headline 'Arsène who?!' because he was from Japan, not a typical footballing background. He brought a French revolution to the dressing room with dietetics, food, training. He changed everything. So it wasn't easy for him, as a French guy, to bring in all these changes to a club with the history of Arsenal. When he first came he had to manage big English players with big English personalities. The fact that everything went well after a year, with the French and the English contingents, showed that everybody was on the same lines, with the same motivations."

How did the big English characters react when Wenger effectively said you can't have a pie and chips at half time any more?

"Chocolate bars before the game, that was one thing that used to happen. The results shows that Arsène was right. Even the English players understood that they couldn't eat baked beans before the game."

Well, that's just impolite...

"I know. But we succeeded, and that was the best response.It was a human adventure at first. Different nationalities, personalities, all mixed. It went well. It was the perfect time for English players to show that they were still the best in their country, and a chance for foreign players like me to make my name here. The fact that Patrick Vieira, Dennis Bergkamp and me were playing key roles... I remember Tony Adams saying at the training ground that he was so happy to have us just in front of him, and that because of us he was able to play for three years longer than he'd expected."

What was Wenger like after losing a game?

"Even when Arsène sleeps, his mind is still working. When you look at him on the bench you think one day he's going to have a big problem with his heart because he tried to keep everything inside. I just want to tell him that sometimes you've got to open up, because otherwise one day you'll come into big trouble. Every time we were losing or lost a game he lost his temper just like the players did."

How do you feel about France's chances against Ukraine in the World Cup qualifiers?

"We wanted to avoid Portugal because most of the players are at top clubs, and also Sweden because last time we met them they beat us. Ibrahimovic is a nightmare for the French defenders in Ligue 1."

Was your international team-mate Fabien Barthez as unhinged as he seemed?

"You have to understand that goalkeepers live in their own world. They train alone, and when you talk about tactics before the game they're not included. Fabien has got a weird personality sometimes. Sometimes you look at him and think he is dreaming but no, he's there. His eyes are not there but he's still there, don't forget. He's still listening."

What were the celebrations like after the World Cup final in 1998?

"Amazing. After big sporting victories people express themselves like nowhere else. There were a million people on the Champs-Élysée, the last time that happened was after the Second World War. We were very proud to do that for France, and especially when you look at 15 years ago, to create a link between immigrants and people who had been in France for longer. The team of that time had Zidane, Barthez, Lizarazu, Thuram, Desailly, we were all from different backgrounds. It didn't matter at that time. I think now, the reality in France is that nothing has really changed, it's become worse and worse. We were proud of what we achieved but unfortunately we didn't really change anything."

Having played with him at Barcelona is it any surprise to you that Pep Guardiola has done so well in management?

"I want to see how he's going to do with Bayern Munich. For me, the job at Barcelona was done by Cruyff. He set the way which everyone has followed. No disrespect to everything he did, but he hasn't created anything at Barcelona. He had Iniesta, Xavi and Messi, three of the most important players in the world at the same time. I don't want to minimise what Guardiola has done, but I think people should realise that it's not him that did that, it's Cruyff, and it's easier when you have the best players on your team. It's the same with Bayern Munich, it's a strong team with two of the best wingers in the world in Robben and Ribery."

It must have been difficult for you to go to Chelsea, with your Arsenal connections?

"It was weird, you're right, but when I left Arsenal I had no problems with the fans. The relationship I had with the fans was strong and was based on love. They knew from the first day that I wore the shirt I was honest with them, and they knew I was honest until the end."

What was the reaction among the players at Chelsea when Abramovich took over?

"They went from being a club with no money to having unlimited finances. If you're a player you know that it is going to be extremely difficult for you to stay, especially if you are at the end of your career like me. I knew I was on a shortlist to leave the club, which was no surprise for me, these were the rules."

Was John Terry an obvious leader at that age?

"John Terry had a chance to play alongside Marcel Desailly, who had huge experience. Without that I'm not sure he would have had the same career. They built a very good relationship and Marcel helped Terry to settle quickly into the team. He was a natural captain, and he wasn't alone because Frank Lampard was doing the same in the midfield."

You taught Frank Lampard everything he knows, right?

"No. I never had this attitude of going to tell young players how to play, except when they behaved badly without any respect for others. As long as they do their best, who am I to tell them what to do? Even if they are only 15 years old."

Emmanuel Petit was talking to The Telegraph on behalf of Capital One, the credit card company and sponsors of The League Cup. Round 4 of the Capital One Cup takes place from the 29th August.

Liverpool and Tottenham target Christian Tello hints at Barcelona exit -

"Right now I am very happy, but next year we'll see," he said.

"Every year I've felt more integrated into the team, more mature, but then every year you want to play as much and when the season ends we'll see what suits me best.

"[I want to be] playing as much as possible but I know who I have in front of me. But hey I'm ready to play it all if needed.

"I know that I can perform at the top, but that's the coach's decision. He has to choose between all of his options."

Twitter hope to avoid Facebook's mistakes as they sell up to 85 million shares ... -

Mr Dorsey, who holds a reported 3% stakes, looks set to add up to $450m, around £300m, to his fortune from the event.

It is often the case that companies launch IPOs to sell a percentage of their shares to the public in order to make profit to buy back more shares.

Twitter officials has more than 215 million active members, a figure that increased by 44% from the previous year.

However the San Francisco-based blogging site announced earlier this year that the company had tripled its income in 2012 to $316.9m, but still lost $79.4m.

The company's revenue largely comes from advertising, with a reported 85% of profit coming from online advertising.

Advertising sales are expected to double over the next year if the IPO is a success.

Crystal Palace 0 - Arsenal 2: Olivier Giroud proves he is Arsenal's master of ... -

Palace did show great spirit after a difficult week that saw them lose 4-1 to Fulham and lose their manager Ian Holloway swiftly after.

Tony Pulis remains the favourite to replace Holloway, and caretaker Keith Millen was quick to point out the positives for whoever comes in.

"The fans are definitely with you and we saw a team spirit today and a togetherness that would make most people want to come and work with these players," he said.

"We actually created more chances than Arsenal."

PALACE (4-2-3-1): Speroni 7; Ward 7, Gabbidon 6, Delaney 7, Moxey 6; Dikgacoi 5, Jedinak 6; Bannan 6 (Gayle 77, 5), Guedioura 6 (Kebe 72, 5), Thomas 7 (Bolasie 58, 6); Chamakh 5.

ARSENAL (4-2-3-1): Szczesny 8; Sagna 6, Mertesacker 7, Koscielny 7, Gibbs 6; Flamini 5 (Gnabry 8, 7; Wilshere 69, 6), Arteta 6; Ramsey 7, Ozil 6, Cazorla 6 (Monreal 72, 7); Giroud 7. Sent off: Arteta 65. Goals: Arteta 47 pen, Giroud 87.

Referee: C Foy (Lancashire).

NEXT UP: Arsenal – Tomorrow: Chelsea (h) League Cup. Palace – Sat: West Brom (a) league.

Syrian hackers hit Obama-linked Twitter, Facebook accounts - Reuters UK

WASHINGTON | Mon Oct 28, 2013 8:43pm GMT

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Syrian Electronic Army, a hacker group sympathetic to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, on Monday seized control of an online tool used by an advocacy organisation for U.S. President Barack Obama to redirect links sent from his Twitter and Facebook accounts.

The link shortener used by Organizing for Action, a group that evolved from Obama's re-election campaign, was briefly hacked, an official from the group said. Link shorteners abbreviate Web links so they take up less space in a tweet, which is limited to 140 characters.

Obama's Facebook and Twitter pages carried links that were intended to take readers to a Washington Post story on immigration - but as a result of the hack, redirected readers to a video of the Syrian conflict instead.

However, Obama's Twitter account itself was not hacked, Twitter spokesman Jim Prosser said.

Obama rarely writes his own tweets from the @BarackObama Twitter handle, which is run by the Organizing for Action staff. However, when he does, they are signed with his initials.

The Syrian Electronic Army tweeted, "We accessed many Obama campaign emails (sic) accounts to assess his terrorism capabilities. They are quite high." It showed what appeared to be the Google email account of an Organizing for Action staffer.

The Syrian Electronic Army has undertaken several high-profile hacking attempts in the United States. In September it appeared to have struck a recruiting website for the U.S. Marine Corps, and the FBI that month also warned that the group might intensify its internet attacks as the United States weighed a military strike against Syria in response to an alleged chemical weapons attack by the Syrian government against its people.

The group has also targeted the New York Times' website and Twitter.

Syria has been locked in a civil war dating to March 2011, which appears to be in a stalemate for now. The conflict grew out of an uprising against four decades of Assad family rule, pitting mainly Sunni Muslim rebels against a president, Bashar al-Assad, whose Alawite faith is an offshoot of Shi'ite Islam.

(Reporting by Mark Felsenthal and Gerry Shih; Editing by Eric Walsh)

Frimpong sparks race tweet row after saying he would have more chance of ... - Daily Mail

By Paul Collins


Emmanuel Frimpong has suggested that the reason he isn't in Arsenal's squad to play Chelsea in the Capital One Cup is because of his race.

When asked on Twitter why he hadn't been picked for Tuesday's match, Frimpong replied: 'Lol I wanna laugh.

'Sometimes I wish I was white and English #realtalk.'

Comments: Emmanuel Frimpong has caused controversy on Twitter

Comments: Emmanuel Frimpong has caused controversy on Twitter

He swiftly deleted his remark and added 'not every tweet is football related' but some fans responded by suggesting his career at the club may be over.

Later the 21-year-old added: 'Look what ever you read tomorrow has majorly been twisted. Is a joke what people will do to start controversy goodnight people.'

Frimpong has previously been charged with improper conduct and fined 6,000 by the FA after a comment aimed at a Tottenham fan in 2012.

He has only featured six times for Arsenal and has been shipped out by Arsene Wenger on loan to Wolves, Charlton and Fulham over the past two seasons.

Likely lads: Walking out to training along with Carl Jenkinson, Olivier Giroud and Jack Wilshere

Likely lads: Walking out to training along with Carl Jenkinson, Olivier Giroud and Jack Wilshere

Seeing red: Frimpong's notable game for Arsenal was when he was sent off against Liverpool in 2011

Seeing red: Frimpong's notable game for Arsenal was when he was sent off against Liverpool in 2011

The comments below have been moderated in advance.

He needs more playing time and needs to work harder and get off twitter!

Can we please get rid of this guy?! He's an embarrassment to the club. 15k a week to make a pillock of himself on social media

Silly, silly Frimpong

The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline.

Monday, 28 October 2013

UK weather: Live updates as ferocious St Jude storm heads towards Britain -

Good afternoon and welcome to the Daily Mirror's live blog on the UK weather.

Winds of up to 90mph are expected to batter parts of the UK bringing fears of damaged buildings and blackouts.

The storm could start tonight but it is rush hour tomorrow morning when the worst of it could hit.

Worryingly, London could see the worst of the weather just as millions of people are travelling to work at rush hour.

The situation across the rest of the country is also worrying local authorities.

 The Red Cross has told today how its volunteers are on hand to help those affected by the storm.

Starting now and continuing into tomorrow, we will bring you all the latest developments as they happen.

Jose Mourinho claims Capital One Cup organisers are 'helping Arsenal win a ... -

Mourinho insisted the friction between him and Arsene Wenger are in the past, unless the Arsenal manager contributed to the scheduling of the match.

Mourinho was critical of Wenger during his first spell as Chelsea boss - at one point calling the Frenchman a "voyeur" - but on his return to Stamford Bridge revealed any differences had been ironed out.

"We have no problems," said Mourinho, before smiling when he added: "Unless you tell me that he had an influence on this. If you tell me that..."

The fixture schedule means Chelsea, playing their fourth of five games in 15 days, will be without the players who featured in the thrilling 2-1 win over City.

Initially, following the draw, Mourinho suggested he would pick a youth team. The reality is the Chelsea boss will select a side similar to the one which won the previous round at Swindon.

That side included World Cup winner Juan Mata and is far from weak as the Blues go to the home of the Premier League leaders.

Chelsea discussed fielding a youth side, but opted against it. Mourinho added: "It's not the plan. We have to respect also our fans.

"We discussed that in the club. [But] we have to protect our players. We are going to try to do our job and we will do our job the best we can."

UK weather: 220000 homes without power across England as Storm St Jude ... -

More than 220,000 homes are without power and commuters are facing severe travel disruption after the worst storm in years lashed the UK.

High winds - recorded at over 100mph in places - have left houses across large parts of the South and East without electricity.

Meanwhile more than 40 railway lines have been cleared of fallen trees, with many more expected throughout the morning.

Police said at least 125 trees were down across roads in Sussex by 6.30am, and Kent Police said at least 70 trees had been blown down across the county.

The storm hit the South West shortly before midnight and moved north and eastwards throughout the early hours, leaving a trail of destruction.

Trains across the country have been disrupted, with many operators not expecting to run services until at least 9am.

Transport for London said there was disruption to six Underground lines due to debris from the storm on the tracks.

The Bakerloo, Central, Jubilee, Metropolitan, Northern and Piccadilly lines were all partially closed while workers removed fallen trees and other obstructions, a TfL spokesman said.

The Environment Agency has 141 flood alerts in place across England and Wales, warning people to be prepared, and 17 flood warnings, with 15 in the South West.

Winds of up to 80mph have been reported, while a gust of 99mph was recorded by the Met Office at the Isle of Wight at 5am.

Major roads around the country have been closed, including both Severn crossings and the A249 Sheppey Crossing in Kent.

In central London, Whitehall was closed both ways between Parliament Square and Horse Guards Avenue due to a collapsed crane.

London Mayor Boris Johnson will chair an emergency resilience meeting involving all emergency services and relevant agencies later this morning.

"Clearly this has been a difficult night for many Londoners, and continues to be an incredibly trying morning," he said.

"Transport for London, the boroughs and the emergency services are working flat out in an effort to keep London moving and minimise disruption as far as is possible.

"I want to thank all the agencies for their professional response in incredibly testing conditions, and I'd urge Londoners to check before travelling by going to for the latest information."

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* The latest on the storm on our live weather blog.