BM (secretivexhero) wrote in ontd_football,

Someone's got to keep you updated on your favourite club...

Story numero uno:

Anderson closing in on Manchester United return after long injury lay-off

The Brazil international, who suffered the injury during the 3-0 Premier League victory against West Ham in February, is back in full training and could be available for first-team duty within a month.

Anderson’s return to fitness has raised the possibility of Stoke City succeeding in their attempts to sign United youngster Darron Gibson on a six-month loan deal.

Stoke manager Tony Pulis, who confirmed on Wednesday that he failed in an attempt to hijack Cardiff City’s loan move for Manchester City forward Craig Bellamy, is determined to add to his midfield options at the Britannia Stadium and the club have enquired about the availability of Gibson.

Anderson’s positive fitness update, less than three weeks after his involvement in a car crash in Portugal, comes as a boost for manager Sir Alex Ferguson due to ongoing concerns over Owen Hargreaves’s failure to overcome long-term knee problems.

Anderson said: "I'm feeling good. I've been training for two weeks and I'm very happy.

“I think maybe very soon I'll come back again and start playing normally with the rest of the team.

“I have had no problems at all with the injury. I'm just running and training really hard so I can come back and train normally with the team."


Numero dos: (this was on the manutd community but I assume not everyone here goes there and it's pretty interesting so...)

The Legend Speaks

Welcome to the new season and let’s hope it is a good one. I believe that it will be because we have a good squad, and you can judge how much faith I have in it by the fact that I have not been bidding big in the transfer market this summer.

It’s not because of a lack of money, just a genuine belief in the number and quality of the guys who are already at Old Trafford. With two or three notable exceptions, it is overall a young squad and our priority is to develop them and enable them to come through together. I don’t need to add to my selection problems by bringing in too many players, only to be forced to then send them out on loan so that they can get a game.

Our striker department is a case in point. With the arrival of young Javier ‘Chicharito’ Hernandez – an opportunity impossible to let go – and Portuguese forward Bebe, a young developer and the type of player we are always on the lookout for, we now have eight forwards. We have three seniors in Wayne Rooney, Dimitar Berbatov and Michael Owen and five young players – our two new signings plus Federico Macheda, Mame Diouf and Danny Welbeck. I can’t play eight, but they are all ready for first-team football and have great potential, yet people talk about us needing a new front man. As it is, I have had to send Welbeck and Diouf out on loan, though only to senior clubs in keeping with their abilities, and they will come back better players.

In the meantime we will aim to replicate that golden era of a few years ago when we had Yorke, Cole, Sheringham and Solskjaer working in pairs and scoring for fun. I know that fans like to see a big-name signing, and I understand that, but when you have the players you want, there comes a point where the best policy is to work with them. There is, of course, the matter of the older players, but we are working on that. I see Antonio Valencia and Nani as the natural successors to the Giggs role. Replacing Paul Scholes is more difficult, even impossible, but we do have players already at the club capable of responding to that challenge.

Among the goalkeepers, Edwin van der Sar will be 40 this year, but with Ben Foster now away Tomasz Kuszczak will get more of a chance to stake his claim. In the longer term we have high hopes for young Ben Amos, who is improving all the time.

I have been pleased with our pre-season preparations. The American trip was long and tiring, but provided some good opportunities for the younger players. And there didn’t seem to be any ill effects when we got back home and beat Chelsea to win the Community Shield. It’s a trophy that is not the be all and end all of a season, but it is always better to win it than lose it.

There were some good signs with some impressive goals, though I doubt whether Chicharito will score too many like his Wembley effort, with a sliced shot that went in off his own head lol, sir alex is trying to say chicharito's ... special. It was good to see the old hands doing well, too, with Edwin outstanding in goal and Paul Scholes named man of the match. Clearly, they are not ready to take a back seat just yet.

There is just one situation that clouds the new season as far as I am concerned, and that is the continued opposition to the Glazer family, our owners. I have no problem with the green and gold campaign. Fans are entitled to protest as they think fit, but not, I suggest, to the detriment of the team. The fact is that the Glazer family own Manchester United and until such time as they decide they want to sell, they will stay as owners regardless of the opposition. So it comes down to the extent of the protest. As I say, everyone is entitled to take a view, but what I don’t want to see is Manchester United mired in so much controversy that it deflects our purpose of winning matches.

Whenever we have had success it has been a collective effort with everyone united – management, players and fans. How many times have I commented in the past for the need to pull together, and for the supporters to get behind the team when we have been faced with a particularly difficult challenge?

There is no doubt that players respond and relish support. We have had some great European nights at Old Trafford, and I wouldn’t like to see anything develop that would diminish that kind of backing. I see that one of the protest groups has come up with a new slogan along the lines of ‘New season, same goal’. I know what they have in mind, but I just wish they meant that once again we will all be united, busting a gut to win something big; in that sense it’s not a bad slogan.

People get so passionate and possessive about their football that they become part of the fabric of their club and feel that they own it. So it’s difficult for them when someone from outside, with no involvement except a financial one, usurps them. But we must stay together if we are to enjoy success, and that’s something I think we can agree we all want.


Numero tres: (not for the financially confused)

Manchester United's Glazer to Start Paying 16.25% on Soccer Purchase Loan

Manchester United’s owners begin paying 16.25 percent interest this week on a loan they took out to refinance their purchase of the 18-time English soccer champions, company filings show.

U.S. billionaire Malcolm Glazer, the 82-year-old owner of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, will pay the rate on more than 200 million pounds ($312 million) of payment-in-kind notes due 2017, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. PIK loans are typically used to hold down cash expenses in leveraged buyouts because they carry coupons that accumulate and are paid on maturity or when the debt is redeemed.

“PIKs can make sense at certain times but given the rate at which interest accumulates they can quickly wipe out equity,” said Jonathan Moore, a high-yield analyst at Evolution Securities Ltd. in London. “You’d expect owners to take them out as soon as they’re able to.”

The loan was agreed by a Glazer holding company called Red Football Joint Venture Ltd. and is the responsibility of the family rather than the club, Chief Executive Officer David Gill has said. The club is liable for a 504 million-pound bond sale it completed earlier this year. The Glazers have an option under the terms of the bond to take 70 million pounds out of the club to pay down other debt. lovely

A Glazer family spokesman couldn’t be reached for comment. Philip Townsend, a spokesman for the club, couldn’t be reached.

Fans Protest

The PIK loan will total more than 267 million pounds at the end of June next year under the new rate of interest, rising to more than 310 million pounds a year later, Bloomberg calculations show. When the loan was agreed in 2007 the interest rate was 14.25 percent, according to filings at Companies House in London.

The club’s debt burden prompted protest from fans concerned that income will be used to finance borrowing rather than on players. A group of wealthy fans known as the Red Knights, including Goldman Sachs Group Inc. Chief Economist Jim O’Neill, has said they are willing to pay “a sensible price” for the club, prompting the Glazers to deny it’s on sale.

Manchester United’s 250 million pounds of 8.75 percent bonds due 2017 were at 96.8 pence on the pound today, little changed on the week, according to Bloomberg composite prices. The notes slumped to as little as 90.5 pence on June 11.


I hope the financial situation gets sorted out in the next few years but that's most likely wishful thinking.
Tags: $ £ €, club: manchester united, sir alex ferguson

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