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Ferrari F1 driver FERNANDO ALONSO "has reportedly held a meeting" with McLaren Chair RON DENNIS "despite having a contract with the Italian team until '16," according to Roger Benoit of BLICK. The two first talked about the '07 season, when he also drove for McLaren. He "left the team after only one season because it did not give him No. 1 status" over teammate LEWIS HAMILTON. Now with Honda rejoining McLaren as its engine supplier in '15, the team "is looking for a top driver." Dennis reportedly offered Alonso €32M ($42M) annually along with bonuses from Honda and Santander (BLICK, 8/29).
IMG on Tuesday named KAREN BRODKIN President of Business Affairs. The longtime Fox Sports exec will work out of IMG’s office in L.A. and manage all of IMG’s legal and contractual work worldwide. The position is the latest in a series created by IMG’s new owner WME as it looks to have the divisions across IMG work more closely together and collaborate on new and existing business. IMG hired former Turner exec GREG D'ALBA as head of global sales to create more sales collaboration across the company and Ogilvy exec DOUG SCOTT to collaborate with divisions on marketing and branded content.
Brodkin, a former SportsBusiness Journal Game Changer, spent 16 years at Fox Sports and most recently worked as Exec VP/Business & Legal Affairs. She helped negotiate and structure many of Fox’ biggest deals, including rights agreements with the NFL, MLB, NASCAR, Pac-12, UFC, Big East and others. Before joining Fox, she worked as an entertainment attorney with L.A.-based companies that represented SPIKE LEE, GARTH BROOKS, Warner Bros. and others.
ESPN promoted MARIE DONOGHUE to exec VP/global strategy & original content, making her the second woman to carry the exec VP title at ESPN. CHRISTINE DRIESSEN is the other. Donoghue will continue to report to ESPN President JOHN SKIPPER. She joined ESPN in '98 and will continue to oversee Exit 31, made up of ESPN Films, FiveThirtyEight and Grantland (John Ourand, Staff Writer). ... General Mills has hired MillerCoors VP/Marketing Connections JACKIE WOODWARD for the newly created role of VP/global media. Woodward will "oversee all paid, owned and earned marketing efforts to 'drive high-impact media plans'" for the company. MillerCoors did not immediately name a replacement, though MillerCoors CMO ANDY ENGLAND indicated that a number of execs, including Dir of Sports & Entertainment Marketing ADAM DETTMAN will "report directly to me until further notice" (ADAGE.com, 8/19). ... Premiership rugby side Bath Rugby announced that Finance & Strategy Dir TARQUIN MCDONALD will take the role of managing director of Bath Rugby, effective immediately. The new role coincides with owner BRUCE CRAIG's recently announced title change to exec chairman and will follow the departure of CEO NICK BLOFELD, who is stepping up to a wider group role (Bath Rugby).
COACHES/MANAGERS: Argentine first division side Boca Juniors named RODOLFO ARRUABARRENA its new coach after sacking CARLOS BIANCHI, "who failed to repeat his past success with the club." Arruabarrena, a former Boca, Villarreal and Argentina left back, was "appointed on Friday to succeed record title-winner Bianchi, who led the club to nine trophies a decade back, but had to go after a dismal 18-month third spell in charge" (REUTERS, 8/30). ... Argentine first division side Tigre accepted the resignation of coach FABIÁN ALEGRE "following a tie in which his team did not score against Quilmes." Alegre, who "had been on the bench for a little more than a year," will no longer coach the team due to "poor results this season:" one victory, one tie and three losses (OLE, 9/2). ... Colombian first division side Millonarios fired coach JUAN MANUEL LILLO. He was informed of the decision by Millonarios President ENRIQUE CAMACHO. Lillo's interim replacement will be NEYS NIETO (EFE, 9/2). ... Liga MX side Tijuana on Monday named DANIEL GUZMÁN its new coach (LA AFICION, 9/1). ... League Championship side Watford named former Brighton Manager OSCAR GARCIA as its new head coach following BEPPE SANNINO's resignation.The former Barcelona player "was appointed coach of Israeli side Maccabi Tel Aviv for a second spell in June." However, Garcia resigned in August after "just two months in charge" (BBC, 9/2). ... England women's hockey Performance Dir DANNY KERRY "has been appointed head coach for a second time following his successful stint as interim coach," when he guided KATE RICHARDSON-WALSH's side to silver at the Commonwealth Games. Kerry previously oversaw the women’s side from '04 until London 2012 -- "the most successful period in the team’s history" (London TELEGRAPH, 9/2).
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Austrian top flight football club Red Bull Salzburg Sports Dir RALF RANGNICK "will step down from his position as soon as German 2nd Bundesliga RB Leipzig gets promoted to the country's top flight." Rangnick, who is also the sports director of RB Leipzig, said, "I will not continue to hold both positions in case of promotion. I will focus solely on Leipzig" (BILD, 9/2). ... Austrian Alpine skier MARLIES SCHILD "announced her retirement from professional skiing on Tuesday." The 33-year-old, who won the slalom world championship title in '11, "set a record with 35 World Cup slalom victories during her 13 years on the tour" (KURIER, 9/2). ... Liga MX announced that Toluca's PAULO DA SILVA is the new president of the league's Players' Committee, replacing ÁLVARO ORITZ, who completed his four-year cycle. Other Players' Committee appointments included DIEGO ANDREI MEJÍA as Ascenso MX spokesperson, ALFREDO MORENO as Liga MX spokesperson and ISRAEL CASTRO as general secretary (LA AFICION, 9/1). ... Ahead of this weekend's Italian Grand Prix, DANIEL RICCIARDO "has been awarded this year's Trofeo Lorenzo Bandini in recognition of his speed, his on-track achievements, and his approach to the sport." The honor roll of previous winners "reads like a list of the sport's modern greats," with MICHAEL SCHUMACHER, FERNANDO ALONSO, KIMI RÄIKKÖNEN and Ricciardo's Red Bull teammate SEBASTIAN VETTEL all previous recipients (Sydney DAILY TELEGRAPH, 9/2). ... England rugby player ZAK HARDAKER "is to be investigated once more for using homophobic language." The Rugby Football League "confirmed it has launched an inquiry into allegations that the 22-year-old used inappropriate language during the Rhinos’ 13-12 defeat by St Helens on Friday night." If Hardaker is charged and found guilty "he may face a suspension of up to eight matches" (PA, 9/2).
DUE DATE: It is "the equine equivalent" to the birth of PRINCE GEORGE. Champion mare BLACK CAVIAR "is attracting attention with the pending arrival of her first foal." The daughter of BEL ESPRIT "is due to give birth on Thursday week, but the foal could arrive any day." Black Caviar "is being cared for at a secret location in New South Wales." A colt, "which would have every prospect of becoming a stallion," would be the best result. Inglis auctioneer SIMON VIVIAN said that putting a price on the foal "is almost impossible at this stage." He joked that "the figure might equate to multiplying your phone number by 10" (HERALD SUN, 9/1).
Bloomberg's TARIQ PANJA: "With FIFA procrastinating over 3rd party ownership investor/agents are making hay when sun shines. Access to players/managers/ceos "
Reuters' ALEX DUFF: "Engand, Portugal, Brazil clubs and @LFPfr @LaLiga presidents to meet FIFA tomorrow to discuss regulating transfer market investing aka TPO"
NBC Sports' WILL BUXTON: "If I ran a US Company, I would have thought getting my brand out to the 100+ million eyeballs that watch GP2 globally would be a positive."
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