Premier League announces link-up with AFC

The Premier League has strengthened its hyperlinks with its most essential abroad market by signing a cooperation agreement with the Asian Football Confederation (AFC).

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GettyImagesMore than half of the 804 million homes the world over which have access to Premier League video games are in Asia and the Middle East.

More than half of the 804 million houses across the world which have entry to Premier League games are in Asia and the Middle East, with a median weekly audience of as much as 30 million people and large social media engagement.

The brand new settlement was signed by Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore and AFC president Sheikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa.

It’ll see the league continue to function its Premier Abilities teaching programme in AFC nations, while the 2 bodies arrange joint marketing initiatives involving their member golf equipment.

The AFC will present help for the Premier League and its golf equipment of their promotion and advertising and marketing activity in Asia, while partnership programmes between professional golf equipment might be inspired.

Scudamore stated: “In the event you look at the numbers, the quantity of nations the Asian confederation encompasses, the sheer physical geography, the inhabitants and the number of fans, then clearly it is massively vital.

“The strategic goals of the Premier League in all probability appears more to Asia than anyplace else which is why mutual cooperation is very important. We also prefer to be good football citizens and this mutual cooperation is nice football citizenship.”

Sheikh Salman added: “The whole of Asia is following the clubs in England and the Premier League is a prime precedence for us, which is why we needed to establish this relationship.”

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Defoe seals Toronto switch

Jermain Defoe: Heading to the MLS and Toronto FC

Jermain Defoe: Heading to the MLS and Toronto FC

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Tottenham have introduced that striker Jermain Defoe will depart the club to join Main League Soccer facet Toronto FC on the end of February.

Defoe, 31, first joined Spurs from West Ham in February 2004, making 177 appearances and scoring 64 targets earlier than joining Portsmouth 4 years later. He moved again to White Hart Lane a 12 months later and hit 78 objectives in 185 games.

He informed the club web site: “Everyone knows how a lot this club means to me and I will play my heart out for the group and the followers till my last kick for the membership. I have had a implausible time right here and the followers have at all times been amazing to me.

“I am grateful for the chance for myself and my household to experience living abroad and for me to play in the MLS with a contract that may take me to the age of 35.

“I have no doubt I shall be coming again as a fan supporting the workforce in the years to return too.”

Tottenham head coach Tim Sherwood hinted he doesn’t count on to enter the switch market to exchange Defoe, adding: “This can be a great opportunity for Jermain and he feels it is one that he needs to pursue. He has played a giant part within the membership for many years and everyone knows he’ll give his best until his final minute in a Spurs shirt.

“We have a number of attacking choices within our squad for the remaining dozen or so video games of the season after Jermain departs and we will keep our options underneath assessment.

“We even have a objective menace from players in other areas of the pitch together with having broad gamers and attacking midfielders who will enable us to vary our shape when required.”

Toronto boss Ryan Nelsen had cooled reports of Defoe shifting to Canada by claiming that Spurs had obtained a number of affords for the England striker from English Champions League golf equipment.

Nelsen, a former Spurs staff-mate of Defoe, mentioned: “I believe in case you ask any Premier League membership then they would take Jermain proper now. I know Tottenham are getting presents everywhere for him – for his services in the mean time – and from top-four golf equipment in England at the moment as properly.

“I know Jermain, I do know his potential, I do know his character.

“All I can say is that if a quality participant like Jermain Defoe graces the MLS it will be an amazing coup for the league.”

Defoe has spent 9 years cut up across two spells with Tottenham, the place his tally of 142 objectives ranks him fifth among the many membership’s all-time main scorers.

He has scored nine this season but all but two of those have come in the Europa League, with Roberto Soldado and, more recently, Emmanuel Adebayor preferred within the beginning line-up.

Experiences in Canada claim that Toronto can pay Spurs around £6million for Defoe, whose present deal had 18 months left to run.

However he is expected to be paraded by Toronto on Monday after signing a 4-12 months deal worth a reported £90,000 a week in what is among the greatest offers in MLS history.

Spurs have additionally announced they may play Toronto in a pre-season friendly on July 23.

It has also been confirmed that USA worldwide midfielder Michael Bradley will likely be becoming a member of Defoe in Toronto.

Serie A side Roma have announced that they’ve agreed a take care of the MLS for Bradley, who like Defoe, is about to be unveiled as a Toronto player on Monday.

The 26-12 months-outdated has played across Europe for the likes of Heerenveen, Borussia Monchengladbach, Aston Villa and Chievo since leaving the New York/New Jersey MetroStars – now the New York Red Bulls in 2005.

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Primera Division: Barcelona and Real Madrid face investigation into public funding

Barcelona: One of seven clubs under investigation

Barcelona: One in all seven clubs under investigation

Real Madrid and Barcelona are among seven Spanish golf equipment which are being investigated by the European Fee over public funding, it was confirmed on Wednesday.

Along with the 2 most profitable clubs in Spanish football, the Fee has additionally opened a probe into their fellow high-flight sides Valencia, Athletic Bilbao, Osasuna and Elche.

Segunda Division facet Hercules are also underneath investigation as the Commission seeks to find out if state help received by these golf equipment is in keeping with European Union laws.

A Commission assertion learn: “The European Fee has opened three distinct in-depth investigations to confirm whether varied public support measures in favour of certain Spanish skilled soccer clubs are in keeping with EU state aid rules.”

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Hawks top of the lists

Hawthorn forward Jarryd Roughead in action.

Hawthorn forward Jarryd Roughead in motion. Source: Information Limited

HAWTHORN is properly armed to deal with Lance Franklin’s defection to Sydney with unique Champion Knowledge evaluation revealing the reigning premier still possesses one of the best listing in the AFL.

However the Swans, who claimed Franklin under free agency in October, are thought-about to be the Hawks’ greatest menace as they chase for again-to-again success.

For the second year in a row, Champion Data’s AFL Prospectus 2014 has ranked Hawthorn as No.1 in a listing evaluation of all the golf equipment with a top quality score of 64.three per cent, with Sydney close behind on sixty one.4 per cent.

Champion Information’s listing assessment takes into account numerous totally different elements.

The analysis makes use of player rankings points over a two-year interval with seventy five per cent weight given to scores from 2013 and 25 per cent from 2012.

The rating factors assigned to each motion on the sector are outlined by what correlates to profitable an AFL game. At the completion of each season the system is reviewed to find out and establish modifications in the values of each occasion from a win/loss perspective, with factors for sure stats adjusted accordingly.

All gamers are measured relative to their peers, tagging them as elite, above average, average, under common or poor. For a player to be given a ranking they should have played at least 10 games over the 2 years.

Hawthorn is deemed to have the most “elite” players within the AFL heading into 2014 with six. Champion Information rated Sydney, Fremantle and Geelong each with five.

Hawthorn’s six elite players are Jarryd Roughead, Cyril Rioli, Jack Gunston, Sam Mitchell, Luke Hodge and Josh Gibson.

Of the Hawks’ 25 rated gamers (those that have played 10 or more games within the final two seasons), 15 are thought of to be in the high 35 per cent of their respective positions – ranked No.1 within the competitors.

Hawthorn captain Luke Hodge celebrates the Hawks flag. Picture: Alex Coppel.

Hawthorn captain Luke Hodge celebrates the Hawks flag. Picture: Alex Coppel. Source: News Limited

Melbourne, ranked second backside on the general record assessment behind Larger Western Sydney, is the only membership to not have an “elite” player on its list for next season.

One of the greatest surprises is West Coast, with Champion Information listing the Eagles third behind Hawthorn and Sydney, despite ending 13th this 12 months.’

The Eagles had been ranked second heading into 2013, however endured a irritating season of accidents and inconsistent form.

Rounding out the top eight sides in list assessment are Richmond (fourth), Adelaide (fifth), Fremantle (sixth), North Melbourne (seventh) and Essendon (eighth).

Collingwood’s low season turnover of players has seen Champion Information drop Nathan Buckley’s crew to tenth, despite the Magpies having 4 “elite” players in their rankings.

Sixteen of the Magpies’ main listed players are ranked “common” – the very best quantity in the AFL – which displays the younger nature of the Collingwood listing.

Sydney ranks as the second oldest workforce within the AFL behind Fremantle – the eighth season in a row rating within the prime 5 of the competitors. The Swans’ average games per participant ranks No.1.

Geelong is the 10th oldest team – its lowest rating since its breakthrough 2007 season. The Cats have 20 players with lower than 25 video games experience – the second most behind GWS.

St Kilda’s rebuilding sees the club’s average age rating drop to sixth – its lowest since 2004. But regardless of having essentially the most 30-plus year-olds in the AFL – six – it still ranks as sixteenth total within the competition in terms of checklist evaluation.

The Saints even have eleven of their forty primary-listed players who’ve come from rival golf equipment, of which there have been 9 trades – the most within the competition.

Adelaide is the only membership with no single-figure nationwide draft selection on its record, bearing in mind the players’ unique drafting, with Patrick Dangerfield (choose 10, 2007) the lowest choice on its checklist.

AFL Prospectus 2014 accessible at for $39.95.

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