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first_imgSouthampton manager Mauricio Pochettino’s future at the club was uncertain on Wednesday as key ally Nicola Cortese quit as executive chairman. Liebherr said in the statement on Southampton’s official website: ”With great regret we have accepted the resignation of Mr Cortese. ”He has done a wonderful job and we very much wanted him to stay. A search has now begun for a successor. ”It is business as usual and we will ensure that the manager, team and staff at the club have all the help and support they need.” Yet there was talk of Cortese considering his position in May, and at the time Pochettino warned he too would leave Southampton if his boss chose to do so. The Argentinian manager, who was appointed as successor to Nigel Adkins in January 2013, said last year: ”I would not understand staying in this role if Nicola was not here. ”The person that actually called me from the start, told me about the project and put their faith in me was Nicola. ”I have great respect as well for Southampton, the club and the supporters, but Nicola has been the one that has placed his trust and faith in me. ”I wouldn’t see myself in this club if it was not for him. We are on the same wavelength about the club and the future of the club so it really would not make any sense if I was at this club and he was not.” Southampton are currently ninth in the table. Defender Luke Shaw gave his reaction to Cortese’s departure in a message on Twitter, writing: “Gutted with that news, but would just like to thank Nicola Cortese for everything he has done for me and the club! All the best to him!” Italian Cortese was appointed as Southampton’s executive chairman in 2009 after being instrumental in German-born Swiss businessman Markus Liebherr’s purchase of the club earlier that year, and has since overseen their remarkable rise from League One to the top flight. It is understood Cortese had been contemplating quitting due to divisions between him and Katharina Liebherr, who took over as the south coast side’s owner following the death of her father Markus in 2010. Pochettino is scheduled to hold his regular pre-match press conference on Thursday afternoon ahead of Southampton’s trip to Sunderland on Saturday. There have been reports claiming 45-year-old Cortese first handed in his resignation several weeks ago. His reasons are unclear, however Liebherr is planning to sell the club according to the BBC. Having entered administration just prior to the Liebherr takeover, Southampton began Cortese’s first season as executive chairman with a 10-point deduction but soon rose from the bottom of the third tier. They achieved back-to-back promotions in 2011 and 2012 as Adkins, brought in as a replacement for Alan Pardew, guided them to the Championship and then Premier League. And after the controversial sacking of Adkins, Pochettino led the Saints to a 14th-placed finish last term, with them ending their comeback top-flight campaign five points clear of the relegation zone. In a statement, the Barclays Premier League outfit announced club owner Katharina Liebherr had taken on the role of non-executive chairman following Cortese’s resignation. They also said a search had begun for a chief executive officer, who will take over Cortese’s executive duties. Press Associationlast_img read more

first_imgAston Villa manager Tim Sherwood is determined to rid the club of its “losing mentality”. Press Association Sherwood oversaw the club’s escape from relegation last season after taking over the struggling Barclays Premier League side in February. But despite that survival, and surprise run to the FA Cup final, it remained an uncomfortable experience. center_img Villa lost their last two league games – including a 6-1 thrashing by Southampton – and finished just one place above the drop zone in 17th. Former Tottenham boss Sherwood, preparing for his first full season as a manager, said: “I said in the latter stages of last season that there is, unfortunately, a losing mentality in the dressing room at Aston Villa. “It is something we need to get rid of. It would help by bringing in new players who are used to winning and, also, it is for my staff to instil into them that it is a clean sheet. Everyone is on a level playing field and we need to move forward. “It needs to hurt the players as much as it hurts me to lose football matches.” Villa have added to their squad this summer by signing defender Micah Richards on a free transfer from Manchester City and Sherwood believes the Premier League and FA Cup winner brings the champion spirit he wants. Speaking at a special event in the Villa Park tunnel to launch the club’s new strips for the 2015-16 season, Sherwood said: “He is a winner. He is a Premier League champion at a great age and is hungry for success. “What he brings more than anything is a winning mentality.” last_img read more

first_imgSYDNEY, (REUTERS) – England’s Alastair Cook became the sixth batsman to score 12,000 Test runs with a single off his pads after lunch on the fourth day of the fifth Ashes test against Australia on Sunday.The 33-year-old, who scored 244 not out in the fourth Ttest in Melbourne last week, received an ovation from the crowd after passing the milestone in the third over of England’s second innings at Sydney Cricket Ground.Cook, playing his 152nd Test match, joined Sachin Tendulkar, Ricky Ponting, Jacques Kallis, Rahul Dravid and Kumar Sangakkara in accumulating 12,000 runs or more over his career.Leading run-scorers in Test cricket(Lists under player Runs Average, Centuries)Sachin Tendulkar (India) 15,921 53.78 51Ricky Ponting (Australia) 13,378 51.85 41Jacques Kallis (S. Africa) 13,289 55.37 45Rahul Dravid (India) 13,288 52.31 36Kumar Sangakkara (S. Lanka)12,400 57.40 38Alastair Cook (England) 12,005 46.35 32last_img read more

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on October 25, 2012 at 1:25 am Contact David: dbwilson@syr.edu | @DBWilson2 Walking around campus has been a bit more of an adventure lately for Beau Blankenship. Whether he’s in class or around the university grounds, people take the opportunity to talk to one of the stars of the undefeated Ohio football team.With a 7-0 start and the Bobcats’ first-ever ranking in the Bowl Championship Series standings, the team gets some more recognition on campus. People are excited to be witnessing OU history.“A lot more people are asking stuff now that we’re ranked and there’s definitely a buzz around here,” said Blankenship, Ohio’s starting running back. “It’s great and we just got to keep it up, but it’s fun being a part of it.”On Sunday, the Bobcats cracked the Top 25 of the BCS standings for the first time in program history. OU is one of just two non-BCS conference teams, excluding Notre Dame, in the Top 25. While it sits behind Boise State, it’s the lone unbeaten non-BCS team.The success hasn’t come as a surprise to members of the team after a 10-4 season capped with a 24-23 victory over Utah State in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“We knew with a bunch of the guys coming back that — building off that bowl game — that we were going to have a good chance at having some success,” quarterback Tyler Tettleton said.The Bobcats’ newfound success can be tied back to the arrival of head coach Frank Solich.In the decade before Solich’s arrival, OU never won a Mid-Atlantic Conference East championship. Under Solich, Ohio won three and has been to four bowl games in the past six seasons, culminating with the school’s first bowl victory last season.Solich compiled a 58-19 record in six seasons as the head coach at Nebraska, where he appeared to have gotten the Cornhuskers back on track by winning a conference title in 1999, sharing the Big 12 North in 2001 and a loss in the national championship at the end of that season. Still, new athletic director Steve Pederson fired the head coach in 2003 to bring in his own coach, Bill Callahan.After taking a season off, Solich arrived at OU ready to build a program from the ground up.“He’s one of the main reasons I came to Ohio,” Tettleton said. “He’s really taught us a lot — just being tough, consistent, just competing each and every day. We’ve been so great over the past three, four years, just consistently improving. … He’s really got us headed in the right direction.”After a bowl victory, the next step would be the BCS, an accomplishment within reach for the Bobcats.Every unbeaten bowl-eligible team other than the Fighting Irish and Kansas State still has at least one game left against another undefeated team — Alabama and Florida will face each other in the SEC championship game if they run the table. At most, there will only be five undefeated teams that can qualify for a bowl at season’s end: UND, KSU, an SEC team, a Pac-12 team and Ohio.Winning out won’t guarantee the Bobcats a spot in a BCS game, but a spotless resume in a solid MAC could be enough to convince voters and computers alike.“It’s not an oddity now for a MAC team to have a winning season and to be playing really very, very good football,” Solich said during the MAC coaches’ teleconference on Monday. “When you have a number of teams to be able to do that in one conference, then that becomes easier for one team just to kind of separate themselves from the conference and show that they are a BCS-caliber-type team.”But for all the success the MAC has had, it’s all been quiet. Ohio has arguably been the conference’s most successful team, but it’s ranked for the first time. Opponents won’t notice the conference’s success until they have a marquee team playing in a marquee bowl as Boise State did.“That’s tremendous for our conference, there’s no question about that,” Miami (Ohio) head coach Don Treadwell said during the teleconference. “What they’re receiving right now is very deserving and I think it’s positive for all of us.”But just breaking into the Top 25 won’t be enough; OU needs to stay.That, Solich said, is a whole different challenge. The head coach who once rebuilt a perennial power at NU preaches the same game-by-game approach that made Nebraska successful during his tenure.“The only way we’ve been able to get where we’re at is by not overlooking anybody, taking it one game at a time and playing our best football,” Solich said.Still, the success is a unique experience for Ohio. For once, it could be the Bobcats, not in-state foe Ohio State, playing in a BCS game.As much as the OU players focus on the game in front of them, they still take the time to look around.They’ve already made Ohio history. They may not be completely satisfied yet, but they’ve enjoyed the ride so far.“It’s a blast being 7-0,” Blankenship said. “It’s fun playing with these guys and having the success and being on a ranked team. It’s all fun, so I’m trying to take it all in.”Game of the WeekNo. 8 Oklahoma vs. No. 5 Notre DameNotre Dame has been as impressive as any team in the country this season, and if the Fighting Irish win out they have a very legitimate chance to reach the national championship game. Much of that has to do with a dominant defense anchored by Heisman Trophy candidate linebacker Manti Te’o.Saturday’s game will be a contrast of styles. UND boasts the nation’s No. 2 scoring defense — behind only No. 1 Alabama — while Oklahoma has the No. 5 scoring offense. Notre Dame’s defense should be able to keep the Sooners offense in check, so the key will be if safety Tony Jefferson and OU’s No. 12 scoring defense can frustrate an inconsistent Fighting Irish offense. Commentslast_img read more