Former Barcelona Manager PEP GUARDIOLA will decide to become Man City manager in the summer, according to Rob Beasley of THE SUN. Guardiola has opted for City as he is convinced the team can "become a force to rival his former club Barcelona." The "hottest property" in world football will snub interest from ManU, Chelsea, Bayern Munich and AC Milan to replace ROBERTO MANCINI at Eastlands at the end of the season. A top source in Spanish football revealed: “It is 100 per cent certain that Guardiola is going to City this summer. And when I say 100 per cent I don’t mean 99 per cent, I mean 100 per cent!” (THE SUN, 1/13).
People and Pop Culture
German Handball Bundesliga club TV Großwallstadt has appointed former German national team player PETER MEISINGER as sport director (SID, 1/12). ... Brasileiro club Coritiba has appointed PAULO CESAR VERARDI as marketing director. Verardi worked for fellow Brasileiro club Gremio last season (MAQUINA DO ESPORTE, 1/10). ... Australian surfwear company Billabong has "hired PETER MYERS as CFO." He succeeds CRAIG WHITE who left the company in December (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 1/11). ... Hyundai's planned return to the World Rally Championship in '14 "has gained momentum following the announcement of MICHEL NANDAN as team principal and the formation of a new motorsport base in Europe." The Frenchman "has held key technical positions" in the WRC since the mid-'90s -- most notably as technical director of Peugeot Sport between '99 and '05 (ISPORTCONNECT, 1/11). ... League Championship side Barnsley has named DAVID FLITCROFT as manager. The 38-year-old former assistant manager "was placed in temporary charge at Oakwell following the sacking of Keith Hill" on Dec. 29 (BBC, 1/13).
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Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame "opened its doors" to former Hiroshima Carp pitchers YUTAKA ONO and OSHIRO SOTOKOBA and former "high school standout" KAZUO FUKUSHIMA as its newest members (JAPAN TIMES, 1/12). ... Chinese Super League club Shanghai Shenhua Owner ZHU JUN said that DIDIER DROGBA "will continue to play" for his team this upcoming season. His statement follows a season "bursting with speculation over the Ivorian's future." However, no information on the status of the ongoing shareholder dispute "has been forthcoming so far," even though it is an issue that "directly impacts upon Shenhua's ability to pay Drogba's massive wage" of about $300,000 a week. Shenhua has not yet submitted the "documentation to participate in this year's CSL, apparently because the club has yet to confirm" in which stadium it will play (WILD EAST FOOTBALL, 1/11). ... SAEED AJMAL "won all of the bowling honours" at Pakistan's inaugural cricket awards ceremony (AFP, 1/13). ... Deutsche Telekom-owned IPTV channel Liga total! "has acquired former Bundesliga VfL Wolfsburg head coach FELIX MAGATH as a broadcast analyst for its Bundesliga coverage" during the second half of the '12-13 season (QUOTEN METER, 1/13). ... Former England national team coach FABIO CAPELLO "will be a surprise guest" at the launch of the FA's 150th anniversary celebration in London on Wednesday. It "will be the first time the Italian has returned to England since he acrimoniously quit as England manager in February" (London TELEGRAPH, 1/12).
GERMAN-NORTH AMERICAN EXCHANGE: Basketball Bundesliga (BBL) club Eisbären Bremerhaven acquired U.S. point guard KEVIN KRUGER. The 29-year-old signed a contract until the end of the season (SPORT1, 1/11). ... German Hockey League (DEL) club Eisbären Berlin has signed Canadian forward COREY LOCKE. The 28-year-old, who previouly played for Finnish club TPS Turku, agreed to a contract until the end of the season (DPA, 1/12).
Manchester Evening News' STUART BRENNAN: "City fans singing "£62 and we're still here". They'll be glad of it - has the makings of a historic day"
Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee President DMITRY CHERNYSHENKO: "Tomorrow #Sochi2014 will unveil the design of the Olympic Torch. Getting ready for presentation..."
Sydney Daily Telegraph's PHIL ROTHFIELD: "Cricket administrators are underestimating the massive threat that is soccer."
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