Liverpool sign Roma’s winger Mohamed Salah for £34m

Liverpool have completed the 39m euro (£34m) signing of Roma’s former Chelsea winger Mohamed Salah.

The Egyptian, 25, has signed a five-year deal and has been a prime target for manager Jurgen Klopp.

At current exchange rates, the fee is short of the club record £35m paid for Andy Carroll in 2011 but matches the sum they spent in 2016 to make Sadio Mane the most expensive African player.

Salah almost joined Liverpool from Basle in 2014 before moving to Chelsea.

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp said Salah has “the perfect mix of experience and potential”, adding: “This is a really exciting signing for us.

“I have followed him since he emerged at Basle and he has matured into a really good player.

“His pace is incredible, he gives us more attacking threat and we are already strong in this area. I like that we will make it even more competitive.”

Salah will wear the number 11 shirt, with Roberto Firmino moving to number nine.

After only six Premier League starts following his £11m move, Salah had loan spells at Fiorentina and Roma before joining the latter in a permanent move for about £15m last summer.

He was a key figure as Roma finished second in Serie A last season, scoring 15 goals in 31 league appearances.

Liverpool have already signed Chelsea’s 19-year-old striker Dominic Solanke, who was top scorer as England won the Under-20 World Cup and will join on 1 July.

That fee will be decided by a tribunal after he rejected a new contract at Stamford Bridge, with the fee expected to be about £3m.

Premier League Manager Sackings 53% less Last Season

There were 53% fewer Premier League managerial sackings compared to last season, according to figures released by the League Managers Association show.

Seven bosses got the boot in the 2016-17 season, a a far cry from last season’s 15 and the second lowest number over the past five years.

The total dismissals in the top four English leagues was 44, down from 58.

Those who were sacked averaged a tenure of 1.16 years.

There were four fewer casualties in the Championship (15) and League One (10) compared with the previous season.

And there were 12 dismissals in League Two – one down on the previous year.

Arsene Wenger, 67, is the longest-serving manager in English football as he approaches 21 years as Arsenal boss.

Dismissals year-on-year since 2011-12
Premier League Championship League One League Two Total
2016-17 7 15 10 12 44
2015-16 12 19 14 13 58
2014-15 5 20 12 10 47
2013-14 12 10 8 7 37
2012-13 8 13 11 11 43
2011-12 6 9 8 10 33

Barcelona agrees terms with Hector Bellerin

Barcelona have struck a deal with Arsenal star Hector Bellerin according to reports.

The Blaugrana allowed Dani Alves to leave in 2016 and were made to regret the decision after the Brazilian’s incredible form for Juventus on the way to the Champions League final.

A graduate from La Masia, Bellerin has long been speculated to return to Barcelona and is now seen as a priority signing for new manager Ernesto Valverde. Valverde left his former club to replace Luis Enrique, who left Camp Nuo at the end of the campaign.

Bellerin will have talks to Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger next week about a potential return to Barcelona six years after arriving at the Emirates as a youth prospect.

Cheick Tiote dies after collapsing in training session in China

Ivory Coast international and ex-Newcastle player Cheick Tiote died on Monday after collapsing during training with Beijing Enterprises.

Beijing Enterprises confirmed that he died about one hour after losing consciousness in training.

“At approximately 6 p.m. of June 5, 2017, when the team was having their regular training session, our foreign player from Ivory Coast, Mr Cheik Tiote, fainted without any warning,” a team statement said. “The club sent him to hospital immediately. However, all revival measures proved ineffective. Mr Tiote passed away at approximate 7 p.m. The club has already contacted his family.

“Since joining Beijing BG football club on Feb 5., 2017, Mr Cheik Tiote has contributed to the club significantly. His football skills and professionalism have been much appreciated and highly praised by the club, the coaches and his teammates. Hereby, Beijing BG football club expresses our deepest sorrow following Mr Tiote’s passing.”

Tiote moved to China in February after signing with the second-division club from Newcastle.

Newcastle noted Tiote’s remarkable volley to equalise in a 4-4 draw with Arsenal in 2011 — his only goal for the club.

“We are devastated to have learnt of the tragic passing of Cheick Tiote at the age of just 30,” Newcastle’s statement said. “The thoughts of everyone at Newcastle United are with Cheick’s family, friends, teammates and everyone connected with the clubs he represented.”

Chelsea receives £150.8m winnings from the Premier League

Chelsea were paid £150.8m after winning the 2016-17 Premier League title a whopping 50% more than the top earners in 2015-16.

The 2016-17 season was the first a TV deal that saw a total of almost £2.4bn paid to the 20 clubs – up from £1.6bn last season.

Bottom placers Sunderland got £93.471m – more than the £93.219m 2015-16 winners Leicester City received the previous season.

The figures are based on broadcast and commercial deals plus prize money.

Funds from the Premier League’s central commercial deals and overseas broadcast rights are shared equally, and as well as half of the domestic broadcast income.

A quarter is paid out in prize money based on each club’s league position and the other quarter in “facility fees” for each game broadcast on UK television.

The ratio between the highest and lowest totals paid to its clubs was 1.61 to 1, the lowest among Europe’s top leagues.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger agrees two-year contract

Looks like “Wenger Out” will not be happening anytime soon as Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has agreed a new two-year contract, extending his 21-year reign at the club.

This outcome was decided when Wenger and club owner Stan Kroenke met on Monday with the decision relayed to directors at a Tuesday board meeting.

Arsenal will make an official announcement on Wednesday.

There was a a lot of speculation that it was time for the Frenchman to leave, especially after finishing fifth in the Premier League this season, the first time they have finished outside the top four since the Wenger joined in 1996.

They finished 18 points behind champions Chelsea, but beat the Blues 2-1 to win the FA Cup at Wembley on Saturday.

Wenger’s contract was set to finish at the end of the current campaign.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger meets owner Stan Kroenke to decide future

Arsenal Manager Arsene Wenger had a meeting with club owner Stan Kroenke on Monday, which was speculated to decide the Frenchman’s future .

The outcome is still unclear, but the decision rests solely with Wenger and Kroenke and will be made known to directors at a Tuesday board meeting.
New terms were agreed a couple of months ago, but nothing is signed.

Wenger has made it known that he prefers to stay, but the determining factor was how he believed the atmosphere around the club would be affected by him doing so.

Wenger has received a ton of criticism this season, Failure to make it to Champions League football for the first time during his reign added to the call for his ousting.

However, they beat Chelsea on Saturday to win the FA Cup, making Wenger the most successful manager – and Arsenal the most successful team – in the competition’s history.

Kroenke has never expressed a desire for Wenger to go, but certain board members feel the time has come for the Frenchman to leave.

Wenger has been vocal about the uncertainty over his position, which also did not help performances on the pitch and that it should have been resolved sooner.