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www.red11.org DAILY NEWS
Date: Sat Aug 14 03:27:16 GMT+00:00 1999
Mail: barry@www.red11.org

This Issue:
1. MANCHESTER UNITED v LEEDS  PREVIEW
2. Manchester United v Leeds United Times Preview
3. Weekly column from inside the dressing room by Jaap Stam
4. Keane - Personal comment by Hashiem Bardien.
5. Latest Interviews fro OT
6. FERGUSON 'VERY HOPEFUL' KEANE WILL STAY 
7. Real will scramble if Keane wants away 
8. FERGUSON'S HONESTY A WELCOME CHANGE  365
9. Bosnich Working to Escape Schmeichel's Shadow
10. Keane Could Deal Killer Blow (Times)
11. DON'T GO KEANE, PLEADS IRWIN 
12. Pool man joins Champions

++++++=========+++++++========+++++++++========++++++++


Daily MANCHESTER UNITED NEWS Saturday 14th August 1999:

Barry Daily Comment:
If you ask me its 50/50 right now on Keano. I am optimistiv like Fergie.
if roy leaves here will be a very good reason, but we will probably never know.
lets BEAT those Sheep today at 1200 UK!
Comms are on the net at
+ BBC Radio 5 live at 1200 UK


************************

99/2000 fixtures/match reports are at
 http://www.red11.org/mufc/992000.htm

Mark Bosnich's Personal Details 
http://www.red11.org/mufc/bosnich.htm

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

MANCHESTER UNITED STATS v ALL teams on the Web
http://www.red11.org/mufc/stats.htm

Previous News:
 BSKYB Takeover news/pics at http://www.red11.org/mufc/bskyb.htm
  Brian Kidd Press conference, pic, real audio
   http://www.iol.ie/~redcafe/kidd.htm
 Peter Schmeichel's last Season at United!
   http://www.red11.org/mufc/news/schmeichel.htm

*** FIXTURES TODAY ***
       Bradford City  v  Sheffield Wednesday
        Derby County  v  Middlesbrough
      Leicester City  v  Chelsea
           Liverpool  v  Watford
   Manchester United  v  Leeds United
          Sunderland  v  Arsenal
   Tottenham Hotspur  v  Everton
           Wimbledon  v  Coventry City

*** FIXTURES ON 15/08/99 ***
         Southampton  v  Newcastle United


*** CONDENSED LEAGUE TABLE AS AT 11/08/99 ***

Pos Team                  P   W   D   L   F   A   GD  Pts
---------------------------------------------------------
 1  Aston Villa           2   2   0   0   4   0    4    6
 2  Arsenal               2   2   0   0   4   2    2    6
 3  Manchester United     2   1   1   0   5   1    4    4
 4  Leeds United          2   1   1   0   3   0    3    4
 5  Chelsea               1   1   0   0   4   0    4    3
 6  Tottenham Hotspur     2   1   0   1   3   2    1    3
 7  Liverpool             1   1   0   0   2   1    1    3
 8  Bradford City         1   1   0   0   1   0    1    3
 9  West Ham United       1   1   0   0   1   0    1    3
10  Wimbledon             2   1   0   1   5   5    0    3
11  Middlesbrough         2   1   0   1   3   3    0    3
12  Leicester City        2   1   0   1   2   2    0    3
13  Sunderland            2   1   0   1   2   4   -2    3
14  Southampton           2   1   0   1   1   3   -2    3
15  Derby County          2   0   1   1   1   2   -1    1
16  Everton               2   0   1   1   1   4   -3    1
17  Coventry City         2   0   0   2   0   2   -2    0
18  Watford               2   0   0   2   2   5   -3    0
19  Newcastle United      2   0   0   2   1   4   -3    0
20  Sheffield Wednesday   2   0   0   2   1   6   -5    0


*** TEAM RESULTS - MANCHESTER UNITED - AS AT 08/08/99 ***

Date        Opposition                        Score   Pos.   Attend.
--------------------------------------------------------------------
08/08/99    Everton                  Away     D  1-1    10    39,141

---------------------------------------------------------------
 NEXT MANCHESTER UNITED MATCHES
---------------------------------------------------------------

14-AUG-1999 [15:00] Manchester Utd. vs Leeds U  (FA Premier League, HOME)
22-AUG-1999 [16:00] Manchester Utd. vs Arsenal  (FA Premier League, AWAY)


UNITED Stats v All teams:
http://www.red11.org/mufc/stats/
ALL FIXTURES at: http://www.red11.org/mufc/fix992000.htm
 
Subject: First Team Fixtures 1999/2000 [All dates/times subject to change]
Dates of possible cup ties also shown

Date        Opposition                        Score  Pos.  Attend.
--------------------------------------------------------------------
15/07/99    Melbourne Australia   11.00     W  2-0    F    60,000
18/07/99    Sydney    Australia   06.00     W  1-0    F    78,000 
21/07/99    Shanghai  Shenhua     12.30     W  2-0    F    80,000
24/07/99    Hong Kong South China 08.30     W  2-0    F    40,000
 1/08/99    Arsenal Wembley Charity Shield  L  1-2    F    70,185

 3/08/99    Omagh aid of Omagh Bomb Fund    W  9-0    F     7,000
 4/08/99    Wigan Athletic friendly.        W  2-0    F    15,000 
 8/08/99    Everton                  away   D  1-1   10    39,141
11/08/99    Sheffield Wednesday      home   W  4-0    3    54,941  

14/08/99    Leeds United             home PL   12.00
22/08/99    Arsenal                  away PL   16.00 Live on Sky
25/08/99    Coventry City            away PL   20.00
27/08/99    Monaco - Lazio           ESC       19.45
30/08/99    Newcastle United         home PL   13.00
11/09/99    Liverpool                away PL   11.30 Live on Sky
15/09/99    ?     EC
18/09/99    Wimbledon                home PL   15.00
22/09/99    ?     EC
25/09/99    Southampton              home PL   15.00
29/09/99    ?     EC
 3/10/99    Chelsea                  away PL   16.00 Live on Sky
*11/10/99   Sir Alex Ferguson's testimonial OT [Cantona + Schmeichel]
13/10/99    ?     WC 3
16/10/99    Watford                  home PL   15.00
20/10/99    ?     EC
23/10/99    Tottenham Hotspur        away PL   15.00
27/10/99    ?     EC
30/10/99    Aston Villa              home PL   15.00
 3/11/99    ?     EC
 6/11/99    Leicester City           home PL   15.00
20/11/99    Derby County             away PL   15.00
24/11/99    ?     EC
27/11/99    Sheffield Wednesday      away PL   15.00
30/11/99    Tokyo  Palmeiras         WCC       20.00
 1/12/99    ?     WC 4
 4/12/99    Everton                  home PL   15.00
 8/12/99    ?     EC
15/12/99    ?     WC 5
18/12/99    West Ham United          away PL   15.00
26/12/99    Bradford City            home PL   15.00
28/12/99    Sunderland               away PL   20.00 Live on Sky
 3/01/2000  Middlesborough           home PL   20.00

 ***** 5-14 /01/2000 Brazil WTC  *****   [3-4 games]

12/01/2000  ?    WC sf i
15/01/2000  Leeds United             away PL   15.00
22/01/2000  Arsenal                  home PL   15.00
26/01/2000  ?    WC sf ii
 5/02/2000  Coventry City            home PL   15.00
12/02/2000  Newcastle United         away PL   15.00
26/02/2000  Wimbledon                away PL   15.00
27/02/2000  ?   Wembley WC f
 1/03/2000  ?   EC
 4/03/2000  Liverpool                home PL   15.00
 8/03/2000  ?   EC
11/03/2000  Derby County             home PL   15.00
15/03/2000  ?   EC
18/03/2000  Leicester City           away PL   15.00
22/03/2000  ?   EC
25/03/2000  Bradford City            away PL   15.00
 1/04/2000  West Ham United          home PL   15.00
 5/04/2000  ?   EC qf i
 8/04/2000  Middlesborough           away PL   15.00
15/04/2000  Sunderland               home PL   15.00
19/04/2000  ?   EC qf ii
22/04/2000  Southampton              away PL   15.00
24/04/2000  Chelsea                  home PL   15.00
29/04/2000  West Ham United          away PL   15.00
 3/05/2000  ?   EC sf i
 6/05/2000  Tottenham Hotspur        home PL   15.00
10/05/2000  ?   EC sf ii
14/05/2000  Aston Villa              away PL   15.00
24/05/2000  ?    EC f

http://www.red11.org/mufc/match.htm

-------------------------------------

 THE FANTASTIC TRIPLE WAS WON!!
EC links + Personal diaries here:
 http://www.red11.org/mufc/barcelona.htm


 Its the presentation of the European Cup at Nou Camp
  Video including sound   57secs  1.5 meg 

++++++=========+++++++========+++++++++========++++++++


Click On pic - for latest interviews/pics from OT"

Subject: MANCHESTER UNITED v LEEDS PREVIEW United Team News United could field an unchanged side for the first time since March. Sir Alex Ferguson is ready to stick to the starting line-up which beat Sheffield Wednesday in midweek but could make changes on the bench. Ryan Giggs, David Beckham and Dwight Yorke are all expected to be fit after playing part of Wednesday night's game. Yorke was replaced at half-time after scoring his second goal in as many games with a slight groin strain, while Giggs and Beckham came off after an hour as Ferguson protected his stars. Team (from): Bosnich, P Neville, Berg, Stam, Irwin, Beckham, Keane, Scholes, Giggs, Cole, Yorke, Butt, Sheringham, Solskjaer, Cruyff, Curtis, van der Gouw The United View ''We all want Roy (Keane) to stay and we know what a big player he is for the club. If he did leave he would be impossible to replace. I think everybody knows that. It would be a terrible loss if he did go, but hopefully he will stay. It's down to him and it's a personal decision for him and his family. You don't play football for a long time and you've got to look after your family and secure their future. You never expect people to go and leave a club like this. We've won quite a few trophies over the years since Roy has been here and you don't really expect people to go. But as I said, we all hope he will stay.'' - Denis Irwin Leeds Team News New signing Darren Huckerby should be pitched straight into the side. Huckerby, who completed a 4m move from Coventry on Wednesday, will linkup with 5m Michael Bridges, who started his goalscoring campaign in the Premiership with a hat-trick in the 3-0 win at Southampton on the same night. Fellow forward Alan Smith is still struggling with an ankle injury which forced him out of the clash at The Dell, while Australian international Harry Kewell is doubtful with the same problem. Team (from): Martyn, Kelly, Harte, Haaland, Radebe, Woodgate, Hopkin, Bridges, Kewell, Bowyer, McPhail, Smith, Mills, Bakke, Jones, Hiden, Duberry, Batty, Huckerby, Robinson The Leeds View ''Leeds are a top club and when you've been fighting for two years at Coventry it's nice to come to one of the best teams in Europe. But I've got to get into the side first because when I look around there are 10 or 11 world-class players here.'' - Darren Huckerby THE STATS Last season: Leeds 1 Man Utd 1, Man Utd 3 Leeds 2; Last five League matches: Man Utd W D W D W, Leeds L W D D W; Top scorers: Dwight Yorke (Man Utd) 2; Michael Bridges (Leeds) 3; Ref: P Durkin (Portland, Dorset)
Click On pic - for latest interviews/pics from OT"

Subject: Manchester United v Leeds United Times Preview REPORTER: Matt Dickinson KICK-OFF: Today, 12 noon TICKETS: Sold out It is the bargain of the century today as Manchester United supporters can enjoy two nail-biters for the price of one. First up is the small matter of a spat with Leeds United, but then comes the real thriller. Roy Keane is due to announce whether he will sign a new contract at Old Trafford. No wonder the kick-off is at High Noon. Should Keane's decision go against the recent evidence and the Irishman commit himself to United for another five years, it would probably make more sense to reveal the good news before the match. The wave of euphoria would swamp Leeds and quite a few more opponents in the weeks to come. Should the United captain, as seemed increasingly likely this week, opt to reject the deal that has been tabled in favour of a move abroad, the announcement would best be made as late, and as quietly, as possible. That would give Martin Edwards, the club chairman, an opportunity to flee Old Trafford and the lynch-mob who unfairly blame him for Keane's flirtation with the likes of Juventus and Internazionale. In the midst of all this debate, a football game will be taking place between the champions and one of their likeliest challengers this season. The Lancashire United should be at full strength, as they were for the 4-0 rout of Sheffield Wednesday earlier this week, while their Yorkshire rivals are equally buoyant after winning 3-0 away to Southampton. For both teams, this is a game that should have them at full stretch. David O'Leary, the Leeds manager, must ponder whether to change a winning team in order to make room for Darren Huckerby, signed from Coventry City for 4 million. The original plan was for Michael Bridges to be slowly drafted into the team from the substitutes' bench, but his hat-trick at The Dell should ensure that he starts. Sir Alex Ferguson, who spent Thursday signing 3,000 copies of his autobiography, has no great selection problems and can leave the worrying to Keane. Will he sign or won't he? It should be quite an afternoon. MANCHESTER UNITED (probable; 4-4-2): M Bosnich - G Neville, J Stam, H Berg, D Irwin - D Beckham, R Keane, P Scholes, R Giggs - A Cole, D Yorke. LEEDS UNITED (probable; 4-4-2): N Martyn - D Mills, J Woodgate, L Radebe, I Harte - L Bowyer, D Hopkin, D Batty, H Kewell - D Huckerby, M Bridges. Referee: N Barry. Suspensions: None. William Hill odds: Manchester United 4-1, Leeds United 9-2, Draw 12-5 PREDICTION: United to win, Keane to go.
Click On pic - for latest interviews/pics from OT"

Subject: Weekly column from inside the dressing room by Jaap Stam Telegraph SIX minutes is all it took to show the rest of the Premiership that we are hungry for more success this season. That's how long it was before Dwight Yorke breached Everton's defence on the opening weekend of the season. And while my late own goal denied us all three points at Goodison Park, we again proved against Sheffield Wednesday three days later that we'll be defending our trophies with all the zeal of last season. Some might have thought we would be bloated on our Treble success but we hardly talk about it in the dressing-room. We all have our own special memories, but with the new season already underway those 10 glorious days in May are now history. The manager gathered us together last week to tell us about his expectations for this season. "Teams will want to shoot us down more than ever now," he said. "Every week you will be facing a team desperate to beat us, because we are the European champions. You must rise to that challenge." It wasn't a long speech, it didn't need to be, every player at Manchester United knows what is expected of him. We know it won't be easy to defend both our Premiership and Champions' League titles, but, crucially, we have a young team. That means that most of us have the majority of our careers ahead and we don't want to play them out without adding to our collection of medals. There is no better feeling in football than winning trophies and I can assure you, we want to recapture it. Success can make players complacent, I have seen it happen myself, but I know it won't at this club. Alex Ferguson has said he has a mechanism to detect if players are still hungry. I don't know what it is and I don't want to find out! That is one of the manager's qualities, to recognise quickly if there is a problem with a player's form or attitude. We are all motivated by a desire not to let him down. But no matter what a coach says, real hunger has to come from within a player. I am a proud man, I won't let my standards drop. I want to win more and establish myself as one of the world's great defenders. I know that a player doesn't achieve real greatness after just one season, it is attained over the course of a whole career. I thought we started the season well at Everton. Alex Ferguson told us to go straight at them in the first 20 minutes and silence the home supporters. Dwight's goal did just that and it looked as if we were going to get a deserved win, then my head got in the way. With three minutes left, a cross came in from the Everton left and Nick Barmby headed it back across the goal, I went for the ball and was horrified to see it fly past Mark Bosnich. I wasn't trying to head the ball out for a corner, it happened so fast, it was purely a case of my natural reflexes taking over and my head just went for the ball. I was angry with myself because it spoiled a good team performance. Neither the manager, nor the rest of the team mentioned the own goal back in the dressing-room. They accept that own goals are part of football. If a fellow defender had scored it, I wouldn't talk about it either. What can you say? Maybe you can joke about it a few days later, but no one was in a laughing mood immediately after the game. An own goal can affect a player's confidence, but I think my performance three days later against Sheffield Wednesday showed it wasn't preying on my mind. People have been joking with me since Wednesday that I'll be taking Ryan Giggs's place on the left wing after my 60-yard run from the centre of defence to the bye-line. It was a nice moment for me on a night when the whole team played some excellent football. We paraded our full complement of strikers on Wednesday and they all looked very sharp. Dwight Yorke scored a great header and then made way for Teddy Sheringham at half-time, who was unlucky not to score himself. I thought Andy Cole had a particularly fine game, he ledthe forward line well and looks faster than ever. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer never likes to be left out of the goalscoring and got one himself. We returned to a jovial dressing-room. Today we face Leeds United, the one team outside of Arsenal, Chelsea and ourselves who are capable of winning the Premiership, and I honestly believe that with a bit of luck, they could do it. You only need to look at how close an unfancied team like Willem II Tilburg came to winning the Dutch League last year and Leeds really impressed me last season. They are a quick team who like to attack. We squeezed past them 3-2 at Old Trafford and at Elland Road they probably had the better of a 1-1 draw. The young Australian, Harry Kewell, scored at Old Trafford and was a constant problem. At the back, Jonathan Woodgate looks a great prospect. It certainly doesn't look like they are suffering from the sudden departure of my international team-mate Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink after their performance the other night at Southampton, and they have a new hero in Michael Bridges after his hat-trick. I'll have to keep an eye on him today, he looks like a real poacher in front of goal. Plus, the addition of Darren Huckerby, the quicksilver striker who signed from Coventry, will make them an even greater force. We know how much this game means to the United fans. The rivalry between the two sets of supporters is intense and that creates the sort of atmosphere I love playing in. Leeds represent the season's first real test, and although we'll have to get out of bed earlier than usual this morning, our followers can count on us being as hungry as ever.
Click On pic - for latest interviews/pics from OT"

Subject: Keane - Personal comment by Hashiem Bardien. Hi Barry I have been a silent member on this list for a year now. Most of the IMUSA members on the list think alike and I have therefor never had the need to express my views as it has been aired previously by list members. The whole Roy Keane issue has angered me so much that I feel like going over to OT and punching Edwards in the face. If Roy does not sign the renewed contract , I won't blame him. Why play for peanuts when idiots like Macca / Anelka can earn double his salary at Real. A pro footballer has a limited lifespan to create wealth and you can't blame him for wanting to secure the best contract that he can. Pay Keane what he is worth , and that is more than the PLC and Martin put together. If the power of the fans could stop the BSKYB bid , why don't we embark on the same process to show Martin and the PLC that without the fans they ( the PLC ) are dead in the water. We can stop going to matches , stop buying merchandise , stop buying stupid chocolates ,stop producing the only thing that the PLC are interested in and that is money. ( OUR MONEY ) Come on fans , we have done it once , we can do it again. I love the club as much as you do , but a small sacrifice for now , will lead to a healthier situation in the future. Let's remove the albatross around Fergie's neck. Imagine if Fergie had the opportunity to buy players like Batistuta / Rivaldo , we would be in heaven by now. Cheers Hashiem Bardien.
Click On pic - for latest interviews/pics from OT"

Subject: Latest Interviews fro OT Download this to hear the interviews http://www.red11.org/mufc/sound/99/latest_on_keane.rm Stream the sound with this http://www.red11.org/mufc/sound/99/latest_on_keane.ram 4mins Sir Alex Scholsie David Beckham David May Comments on Roy Keane from OT today! Other INCREDIBLE NEW Sound files: ESP for "OLD FARTS" SENIOR OLD-FART: 66 Richard Arnold OTHER OLD-FARTS: David Marshall Bruce D.Barnes Paul Francis Hogan Dudley K.Upton Kenny Thomas Frank Scicluna Seamus Gallen Eddie (Edward) Stevenson Clive Halliwell Eric R.King Denis Law interviews: 1 Harry Gregg: (Munich and after) http://www.red11.org/mufc/sound/99/harry_gregg.rm 433k 6m 40s 2 Alex Ferguson (before Barce) http://www.red11.org/mufc/sound/99/alex_denis99.rm 332k 5mins 3 Nobby Stiles (career) http://www.red11.org/mufc/sound/99/nobby_stiles.rm 296k 4m 34secs Enjoy!!! Cheers Barry barrylee@post3.tele.dk http://www.red11.org
Click On pic - for latest interviews/pics from OT"

Subject: FERGUSON 'VERY HOPEFUL' KEANE WILL STAY Sir Alex Ferguson has admitted to being "very hopeful" that Roy Keane will stay at Manchester United. The club's skipper is set to delay a decision on his future - he had been due to make an announcement on Saturday on whether to accept United's contract offer. That move, combined with United manager Ferguson's confidence, now points to the Republic of Ireland international agreeing to stay at Old Trafford. "I am very hopeful," said Ferguson. "I think Roy knows the value of the club and he loves playing for Manchester United. That's a strong set of cards to hold in your hand, and you add all these things up, he's captain of the club and having a terrific spell." He added: "But he is undecided about a lot of things and I think quite rightly he's taking his time with it - you shouldn't rush into these things anyway. "But hopefully he'll stay," he told Sky. Keane's original plan was to make his announcement on Friday, and then postponed it to following Saturday's home game against Leeds. However Keane's lawyer and adviser, Michael Kennedy, said he may need even longer to make up his mind. Kennedy said: "Roy Keane is considering his position and he will make a decision in the next day or two."
Click On pic - for latest interviews/pics from OT"

Subject: Real will scramble if Keane wants away By Graham Hunter Saturday, August 14, 1999 Real Madrid have forced themselves to the front of the queue of clubs who want to sign Roy Keane if he announces today that he will quit Manchester United at the end of the season. The Spanish club have put together an enticing salary package for the Republic of Ireland midfielder, although Juventus last night emerged as rivals for Keane by offering a 3 million-a-year tax-free deal. Real have a reputation for raiding the Premiership, having agreed a 15 million, five-season deal with Steve McManaman and signed Nicolas Anelka from Arsenal for 23m. But Juventus director Luciano Moggi said: 'Our coach, Carlo Ancelotti, likes Roy Keane and there is a possibility he could play for Juve next season. 'At the moment, our midfield is strong, full of champions, but next season the conditions could be right for Keane to join us.' Inter Milan and Lazio also covet Keane, but the 28-year-old could leave them all disappointed if he announces today that he has accepted United's final offer. Real could have the edge in any transfer scramble because they can offer star players a high percentage of the revenue earned by merchandise which bears their name. These 'imagerights' are now a big part of the most alluring contracts because they allow the player to earn large sums which do not come from the club's bank balance. If Keane decides to leave Old Trafford and United put him on the transfer list, then the odds will tilt in favour of an Italian club - who would be prepared to pay the market rate or use player-exchange - signing him. Real do not want to spend millions on Keane now, but will be first in line to take him next summer if he decides to quit the Premiership.
Click On pic - for latest interviews/pics from OT"

Subject: FERGUSON'S HONESTY A WELCOME CHANGE 365 By Philip Cornwall HOW many times have you read a review of a footballers' book that slagged it off for being "just another bland ghost-written autobiography"? Yet after Alex Ferguson produces one worth reading, all he gets is flak of a different hue. Though he scarcely needs it, it's time to spring to Fergie's defence. You might not agree with him. You might wince at the thought of being on the receiving end of his acid assessments. But what we have is the genuine opinions of one of the most important men in the game, and they are worth hearing. Comparisons have been made with Glenn Hoddle's infamous World Cup diary. Yet there is a fundamental difference: the England coach betrayed the confidences and stabbed in the back those over whom he still had control. Ferguson may have attacked those who used to work for him, but of the current occupants of Old Trafford the only ones under fire are those above him. Above all, many felt sorry for Brian Kidd. However, has anything that has happened since the former number two became Blackburn manager suggested that Ferguson was wrong to have "grave reservations" about him taking over at Old Trafford? And as Ferguson explained, it was Kidd who was disloyal to him, going behind his back to object to the board over the proposed purchase of Dwight Yorke last year. (Incidentally, how many Blackburn fans must have shuddered at the news that he wanted to sign John Hartson instead?) He might not like it, but isn't this better than the ingratiating, dishonest bluster about "the gaffer" with which Kidd bombarded us on taking the job at Ewood Park, a few months after questioning Ferguson's judgment over Yorke? And so to Gordon Strachan, who responded to the criticism by calling Ferguson "unfair and unfeeling". Strachan has had little compunction about laying into referees in the past, and has now copyrighted the "I won't say anything about the officials because I would get fined" line. His Coventry side, with vocal support from the sidelines, this week accused Leicester's Neil Lennon of cheating to get a penalty. He's a fine one to object to public criticism. The same can be said about Ferguson, of course - but in taking on the United board, he has shown more guts than most managers have (admittedly from a position of strength, but all the same...). And while ex-players aplenty have had a hard time, the current squad is left unscathed. Of course the flip side is that as the criticism is so honest, for once you can believe the praise. To me it is a source of amazement that he holds Bryan Robson in such high esteem - but at least you know it's real. Autobiographies worth reading come at the rate of one a year at most in football - last year it was Addicted, Tony Adams' account of alcoholism, this year it's Managing My Life. For the sake of all of us who have to read these books to review them, and the buying public who have patiently coughed up for some works of breathtaking dullness over the years, it's important that no-one gets put off following Ferguson's example.
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Subject: Bosnich Working to Escape Schmeichel's Shadow By Henry Winter IT WAS the last few days of pre-season and Mark Bosnich was discussing with Teddy Sheringham how players change their style on signing for Manchester United. It is a fact of Old Trafford life that heightened demands, whether tactical or technical, are placed on those chosen by Sir Alex Ferguson. Dwight Yorke, Bosnich's mate from their Aston Villa days, is a darting, hard-working example of a footballer who, in less than a year, has refined his game at Manchester United, becoming far more effective in his sphere of influence. Now Bosnich aims to follow suit. The focus is on skills, not frills. "The ultimate aim of a goalkeeper is not to concede goals and to do it with a minimum of fuss," said Bosnich, who faces David O'Leary's lively Leeds at mid-day today. "Teddy and I were talking about reinventing our games to suit circumstances. I said the best thing for me is to make saves look as easy as possible, which sometimes in the past I was perceived not to do. David Seaman makes things look so easy and that's a sign of a great goalkeeper." So did Peter Schmeichel, Bosnich's fabled predecessor. There was no showboating in the Dane's goalkeeping, no extra roll to milk the applause from the fans. Time was of the essence. As Schmeichel claimed or cleared the ball, he remembered his part in United's offensive strategy. In a blur of a bowled-arm movement, the ball was sent flying out wide to David Beckham or Ryan Giggs and the counter-attack began. Schmeichel's shadow is massive and United's fortunes this season will depend to a considerable extent on Bosnich's ability to meet the challenge. One of football's more intelligent characters, the Australian has thought long and hard about how to assimilate himself into United's way of playing, following his years at Villa. "I want to look at what is going on here first and take it all in before adapting my game." Bosnich is familiar with Ferguson's expectations. As a 17-year-old fresh from his home-town club, Sydney Croatia, Mark John Bosnich first arrived at Old Trafford as a non-contract player on June 5 1989. As understudy to Jim Leighton and Les Sealey, Bosnich made only three appearances, against Wimbledon (0-0), Derby County (3-1) and Tottenham Hotspur (1-1), all at Old Trafford, before work-permit problems forced him to fly back to Sydney in the summer of 1991. Ron Atkinson, the former United manager, kept an eye on Bosnich. When the Australian's paper-work was eventually sorted, Atkinson signed Bosnich for Villa. Seven years on, Old Trafford's irritation was more than eradicated by Bosnich's free-transfer switch. Despite his planned watch-and-wait tactics, Bosnich has had to change quickly since finding himself behind a flat back-four. "Returning to United, I reverted to becoming a sweeper-goalkeeper which I did during my previous time here with the youth team and also my time under Ron Atkinson at Aston Villa. "Since then I played virtually all the time [under Brian Little and John Gregory] behind a back-five with a sweeper, which is a lot more cover, so you tend to be far more deeper." Now he is back in keeper-sweeper mode, rushing out to balls clipped over Jaap Stam and Henning Berg, seen in headed clearances during last Sunday's draw at Everton. The role, he argued, "is good because it keeps my concentration levels up". The one area of concern appears his kicking. "They do pass the ball back a lot more at United," he said. "If I had to pick one weakness in my game in the past it has been my kicking. It's one thing I have worked very hard on. I'm only 27; only a baby really in goalkeeping terms. Players improve at United." The quality of shooting encountered in training sharpens Bosnich's reflexes. "Most definitely. It doesn't matter who is shooting. Even when it comes to the midfielders - Becks, Butty and Keano - they can all shoot. The better they are, the better you become. Beating someone 21-0 at table-tennis is not going to improve you. "The general standard of Dwight's finishing has gone up three-fold since he came here. He he has also become a more clinical professional. He doesn't waste much time around goal or in training with tricks. It's all business. That's the main thing I have noticed about this place. It's very intense and serious. It's obvious to me from the training and preparation why Manchester United have been so successful over the past decade. It's very professional." Bosnich dismisses his image as purely a shot-stopper. "I usually like to dominate my box cross-wise as much as I do like to be a shot-stopper. But the higher you play, in Europe and especially at international level, the opportunity to come out and claim crosses is very, very minimal because they whip it in with such ferocious pace and head-high. You are risking a touch to go past you. It then becomes a game of concentration." Goalkeepers' concentration has been troubled in the Nineties by alterations to boots, ball and Laws. "The ball does move around a lot, especially when someone like Paul Scholes, David Beckham or Dwight hits it. The ball really flies then. I find the changes a challenge. Before, it was perhaps not as demanding and not as much expectation was placed on a goalkeeper. The more expectation placed on a goalkeeper the more valuable he becomes to a team." Bosnich was speaking at the Cliff, United's training-ground, where United's players had assiduously gone through their drills, determined to echo last season's feats. "Teams tend to reflect their manager," Bosnich observed. And few have as much desire as Ferguson. "I am happy they are still as hungry because I am as hungry as anyone," said Bosnich. "I haven't heard much talk about the Treble. They are a very level-headed, very hard-working bunch of lads. In their own right, they are all such big stars that they have no need to shout their mouths off. Their actions speak loudest. It's a feeling that no money in the world could buy." But can he enjoy this new world of huge expectations? Bosnich smiled. "The best fun in football is winning things." Spoken like a true Old Trafford pro.
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Subject: Keane Could Deal Killer Blow (Times) Manchester United's captain finally decides his future today and, as Oliver Holt reports, his answer could have a significant bearing on the fortunes of the club Keane: should I stay or should I go? THE STAKES are high enough as it is on any day that Leeds United visit Old Trafford, but the tension gripping Manchester United supporters during the clash this afternoon of the northern giants will be almost unbearable. Roy Keane is supposed to be making an announcement after the game and the message that it contains will tell the fans if they should cool it or should they blow. It is still possible that Keane and his adviser, Michael Kennedy, will tease the saga out until next week. But if the news does come today, and if that news is bad, it is likely to plunge the club's supporters into sullen despair rather than stir them to the same heights of passion that once drove Fiorentina fans to riot when Roberto Baggio was sold to Juventus. The sense of loss, though, will be just as deep. For all the attention rightly lavished on David Beckham, Dwight Yorke and Ryan Giggs, Keane is, and has been for the past two years, United's most influential player, the player that Sir Alex Ferguson values above all others. Losing him would be a potentially devastating blow. It is hard to think of many players who are as crucial to the essence of the side as Keane is to United. Arsenal might suffer just as grievously if they were to be permanently deprived of Tony Adams, but it is hard to think of any other valid comparisons in the FA Carling Premiership. Perhaps Steve McManaman once had a similar sort of psychological influence over Liverpool, and the similarities between the genesis of his move to Real Madrid and the path that Keane's negotiations appear to be taking are almost uncanny. It is also worth remembering that the last time United were deprived of his services for any length of time, when he missed most of the season before last with a serious knee injury, United's great rivals, Arsenal, won the Double. Keane is to United now what Bryan Robson once was. He is their driving force, their restless, abrasive captain, the man who embodies the refusal to give in that took United to so many extraordinary triumphs last season. He is their soul. If he goes, it will probably be at the end of the season, probably to Internazionale or Juventus, whose vice-president, Luciano Moggi, suggested yesterday that that might be a viable scenario. The problems United would then face would tower above them like a mountain range. For a start, if he were to leave at the end of the season, United would have to find a replacement without the consolation of a transfer fee for their captain, whose contract will have expired. The bigger problem, though, is that Keane is impossible to replace. Edgar Davids, the Juventus midfield player, has been mooted but, fine player that he is, he does not possess Keane's ability to plough a match-long furrow from box to box. Zinedine Zidane, also of Juventus, would be a wonderful acquisition, but only as the perfect foil for Keane, not as his replacement. He is a creative genius, but he does not have the Irishman's strength in the tackle or his ability to defend. Juan Veron, whom Parma sold to Lazio for 18 million earlier this summer, and Gustavo Poyet, of Chelsea, are, in different ways, closer to the Keane model but they, too, do not possess his all-round game or inspirational qualities. United would still be a force without him, of course. They have too many good players not to be, but the morale of those players would be affected if Keane departed and the ones left behind would be entitled to join the supporters in asking Martin Edwards, the club chairman, why the richest club in the world could not keep its best player. Yesterday, at least, Ferguson, fresh from the London launch party of his autobiography, was bullish about the prospects of his favourite player agreeing to the new 2 million-a-year, five-year contract that represents United's final offer. "I have sat him down two or three times to discuss it," the United manager said. "It is not like we are trying to persuade a new player to come to the club. Roy is well aware of the qualities here. He loves playing for United. He is captain and he is happy. "He can get better and better here, I am absolutely positive about that. People already regard him in the same class as Bryan Robson and Eric Cantona. I am optimistic, make that very optimistic, that he will stay. "If he does, it will have the same effect as buying a new player. It will give a great boost to the other players in the dressing-room and to the fans. The whole club wants him to stay. There are no thoughts that we should sell him. I would not change him for anyone in the game." If Keane is wavering because of the emotional pleas of the United supporters during the thrashing of Sheffield Wednesday last week, most of the people close to him and the club still expect him to reject United's offer and leave for Italy at the end of the season on a Bosman free transfer. Ferguson says that he expects Keane to tell him of his decision before the midday kick-off today. If the news is bad, Edwards will feel as lonely and as vulnerable as Gary Cooper at High Noon. No friends any more and a hell of a hard fight ahead.
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Subject: DON'T GO KEANE, PLEADS IRWIN Roy Keane would be impossible to replace at Manchester United, according to Denis Irwin. Keane will announce after Saturday's televised home game against Leeds if he has accepted the club's final contract offer and Irwin claims he must stay. Irwin was speaking for all of the United players when he appealed to Keane to remain at Old Trafford, although the defender knows his skipper must put his own interests first. Irwin said: "We all want Roy to stay and we know what a big player he is for the club. "If he did leave he would be impossible to replace. I think everybody knows that. "It would be a terrible loss if he did go, but hopefully he will stay. "It's his decision at the end of the day. I'm sure he will make the right one and we all hope he will stay. It's down to him and it's a personal decision for him and his family. "You don't play football for a long time and you've got to look after your family and secure their future." Irwin admits it is hard for him to contemplate that Keane might go after all the success the Republic of Ireland team-mates have enjoyed together at United. "You never expect people to go and leave a club like this. We've won quite a few trophies over the years since Roy has been here and you don't really expect people to go. But as I said, we all hope he will stay."
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Subject: Pool man joins Champions Isn.t life sweet we are just soooooooo much better than the scousers now. Where have all those Liverpool fans of the 70's and 80's gone ? 12-AUG-1999 [10:48] Liverpool man signs! Rob Swire, United's new senior physio, has had a busy start to the season with so many injuries. But now help has arrived in the form of Neil Hough, assistant physio of Liverpool Football Club. Hough has left Anfield in the wake of senior physio Mark Leather's resignation over Michael Owen's rehabilitation. Neil will link up with Rob, who has taken over physio duties following David Fevre's departure for Blackburn Rovers. Welcome aboard, Neil! http://www.manutd.com/news/feature.sps?from=latest&id=1639642 Ian Woolley ian@ridge.co.za
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