Real Madrid are preparing to launch another summer raid on Manchester United – this time to land left-back Patrice Evra – on the advice of last summer’s big mover Cristiano Ronaldo.
The French international is the club’s top target after being recommended by Ronaldo, who left Old Trafford for the Santiago Bernabeu in a world record £80 million deal last summer.
Valdano has a number of other candidates on his wishlist — including Arsenal’s Gael Clichy, Chelsea’s Ashley Cole and Fiorentina’s Juan Manuel Vargas — but Evra is his top target as Ronaldo insists he is the man for the job. As a result, a bid in the region of £20m is being prepared.
Reports from France suggest Evra might be open to the move, considering he has already won every trophy available to him in English football since joining United from Monaco in January 2006.
Lionel Messi was rewarded for a stunning year in which he helped Barcelona to an unprecedented six trophies by being named FIFA’s World Player of the Year.
The 22-year-old won the award for the first time, beating last year’s winner Cristiano Ronaldo, his two clubmates Andres Iniesta and Xavi and Brazil midfielder Kaka. He was presented with the trophy at a glittering awards gala in Zurich.
Also, the FIFA/FIFPro World XI, voted by members of the international professional footballers’ union FIFPro:
Iker Casillas (Real Madrid), John Terry (Chelsea), Nemanja Vidic (Man Utd), Patrice Evra (Man Utd), Daniel Alves (Barcelona), Xavi (Barcelona), Andres Iniesta (Barcelona), Steven Gerrard (Liverpool), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid), Fernando Torres (Liverpool).
Cristiano Ronaldo won both the PFA Player and Young Player of the Year Award 2007.
Ronaldo became the first player to win both awards in the same year since Andy Gray in 1977; Ronaldo received his awards at a gala dinner in London on Sunday night (April 22).
Ronaldo has always been the favourite; his only real competitor for Player of the Year was Chelsea’s Didier Drogba, who is 2nd on the list, while Ronaldo’s Manchester United team mate Paul Scholes in 3rd.
The 2nd place for young players is Arsenal’s Cesc Fabregas; Tottenham’s Aaron Lennon 3rd.
Manchester United also have a strong hold for PFA Premier League Team of the Year, filling 8 out of 11 spots. It will be quite an ironic if Chelsea wins the Premier League and FA Cup in the end, with only one player in the Team of the Year… touch wood.
Edwin van der Sar, Gary Neville, Nemanja Vidic, Rio Ferdinand, Patrice Evra, Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United), Steven Gerrard (Liverpool), Didier Drogba (Chelsea) and Dimitar Berbatov (Tottenham)
Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson received a Special Merit Award.
Manchester United produced one of the greatest European performances of all time at Old Trafford, defeating AS Roma 7-1 and marched on the UEFA Champions League semi-final.
United will meet AC Milan or Bayern Munich in their first semi-final since 2002.
Roma with the 2-1 lead from first leg in Rome, started brightly and looked more likely to open the scoreline at Old Trafford. Francesco Totti was just a feet away from finding the net, but United kept its nerve and soon… things changed.
Read the rest of this entry »