Saturday, 30 November 2013

Lukaku 'handed in transfer request'

Romelu Lukaku made a transfer request at Chelsea before being granted a temporary move to Everton, it has emerged.

It is understood the 20-year-old Belgium striker asked to move following the August 30 European Super Cup defeat to Bayern Munich in Prague, when he missed the decisive penalty in a shootout defeat for Jose Mourinho's men.
  • Player Profile

17. Romelu Lukaku

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Appearances12 (4)
Goals 9
Assists 2
Yellows 1
Reds 0
*Current Season

Lukaku did not believe he could compete for a regular starting place for the lone striker's role after the arrival of Samuel Eto'o to join Fernando Torres and Demba Ba.

His request was immediately rejected and a loan with Everton negotiated on September 2, transfer deadline day, with his season-long switch ending the prospect of Ba leaving Stamford Bridge on loan.

Lukaku joined Chelsea from Anderlecht in August 2011 for a reported fee of £20million and spent last season on loan at West Brom, scoring 17 goals.

At Everton, he has scored seven goals in seven Barclays Premier League starts.

Mourinho has repeatedly been asked about Lukaku's situation since allowing the Belgian to move and was again ahead of Sunday's match with Southampton.

Mourinho said: "Romelu likes to speak. The only thing that he didn't say is why he went to Everton on loan.

"When some day he scored and he was saying 'I hope Jose is watching this'. It was like saying 'why did he let me go?' and that's what I'm telling you now. Tell the country why you left. Ask him.

"When you keep quiet all the time, you keep quiet all the time. When you like to speak, when you enjoy to speak, speak everything. Don't speak only half of it. Speak everything.

"And it's a simple question: why did you leave Chelsea? Ask him."

Mourinho believes there are a number of positives to Lukaku playing at Everton.

Mourinho added: "It's good for his evolution. It's good for Chelsea, because he belongs to us for a long time and I'm happy with that.

"I'm happy that he's scoring goals against our direct rivals and he doesn't score against us because he can't.

"It's phenomenal when you have a player even when he's not playing for you he's scoring against your opponent. That's very, very good."

Mourinho stated he is unlikely to sign players this January - "most probably we are going to end with this group," he said - as few players are available who would improve his squad and be available for the Champions League.

Chelsea have won the title once since Mourinho's departure - with Carlo Ancelotti in 2009/10 - after he delivered the club's first championship for 50 years and successive titles at the start of his first spell.

He believes winning the Premier League this season would be a greater achievement than that 2004/05 success.

Mourinho said: "To win when a club is not historically a winner is a hard step. But I think winning the title this season would be a bigger achievement.

"In my time it was just three teams fighting for the title. Now it's six. And the difference between the three and the rest was a big distance.

"And in this moment the distance between the six is short and the difference between the six and the next three, four is also short. Nobody knows what can happen.

"Maybe the difference will be a couple of points. It will be good fun I think.
 
"I think we have the competition that every country wants to have and nobody has."

After winning titles in Italy and in Spain during his near-six-year absence, Mourinho is enjoying his second spell in England.

Mourinho added: "I would prefer to be top of the league and the second to come 10 points after me, I would love it.

"But I love the fact that you win a match you are second, you lose a match you go from second to sixth, you lose two matches you are out of European competitions, you win two matches, you are probably first or second. The league is fantastic."

Mourinho is uncertain what it will take to win the title this season.

He added: "How many points? I don't know, but I would say maybe a team with six defeats can win."

Mourinho was asked about the pressure of the fierce competition in relation to Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas, whose job is reportedly under threat following the 6-0 loss at Manchester City.

Mourinho believes managers' positions should not be scrutinised so soon, particularly this term.

Mourinho said: "If in this league, to lose two matches is a reason to be under pressure, I think everybody during the season will be under pressure, because everybody will lose two matches.


Moyes: No plans to rest Rooney

Manchester United manager David Moyes has no plans to give Wayne Rooney a rest just yet. 
wayne-rooney-manchester-united-wallpaper-2013-66
Moyes is keeping a close eye on the England international, looking for signs his standards might be slipping after a congested recent run of fixtures.

So far, the indications are all positive.

Rooney has been United's stand-out performer so far this season and claimed four assists in his side's Champions League hammering of Bayer Leverkusen on Wednesday.

So, while Moyes accepts it will be hard to keep up such a level of performance indefinitely, there is no need to take Rooney out of the firing line.

"There will be times when we do have to try and look after him," Moyes told national newspapers.

"At the moment he doesn't need it.

"I look for any signs of a dip. If I saw them, I would probably look to do so.

"It doesn't need to be just now. A lot of other clubs are playing their players continuously.

"We can rotate but I will wait.

"If it doesn't come around and I don't need to, I won't do it."

Moyes' predecessor, Sir Alex Ferguson, was of the opinion that Rooney needed to keep playing matches to maintain his condition.

It is a view Moyes shares.

"He is a boy who continually gets better in the games he plays," said the Scot.

"The point I am making is that I want to keep him playing as well as he is doing.

"If he keeps doing it I don't need to worry."

Rooney's performances have ensured last season's Golden Boot winner Robin van Persie has not been missed as much as he would have been if he suffered the same groin injury troubling him now 12 months ago.

Indeed, Moyes seems to have moved the 28-year-old England striker onto a whole new level.

Rooney is even taking the responsibility of set-piece delivery. And doing rather well judging by his efforts in Germany.

"He works with (assistant manager) Steve Round on his set-pieces just about every day," said Moyes.

"He takes his time about it.

"Technically they are trying to look at how they can do it even better.

"But it is Wayne. It is his enthusiasm."

Glasgow helicopter crash: One dead at Clutha pub

One person has been confirmed dead after a police helicopter crashed into a busy pub in Glasgow.

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Scene of crash
Police Scotland said they expected the final number of fatalities would be higher and a rescue operation is continuing at the scene.

The crash happened at The Clutha in Stockwell Street at 22:25 on Friday. 

There were three people on board the helicopter - two officers and a civilian pilot. Thirty-two people have been taken to local hospitals.

Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond told a press conference it was a "black day for Scotland."

Chief Constable Sir Stephen House confirmed that one person had died and further fatalities were expected after the helicopter crashed on to the roof of the pub.

He said there was "deep sorrow" in Police Scotland and thoughts were with all those involved.

He said they "can't say definitively" whether there are people still trapped within the pub, and added "we are still in a search and recovery phase".

He went on: "It's been emotional but it's the job of everyone here to deal with it and we will continue to deal with it."

Mr Salmond said: "This is a black day for Glasgow and Scotland but it is also St Andrew's Day and we can take pride in how we respond to adversity. 

"The response from our emergency services and citizens has been exemplary."

Earlier senior fire officer said they had made contact with some people trapped inside the pub but the building was unsafe and they were taking a "methodical" approach to the rescue.

The emergency services could be seen on the pub's roof trying to rescue people from inside.

It has been reported that about 120 people were in the pub at the time of the crash. Many were rescued or escaped but others have been trapped by a collapse on the left-hand side of the building.

Emergency services have erected barriers around the scene and specialist rescue teams are in the pub with sniffer dogs.
  • The Police Scotland Casualty Bureau number is 0800 092 0410
  • Callers should only contact the Casualty Bureau number if they have concerns for relatives who may
  • have been in the Clutha Vaults pub or surrounding area at the time of the incident
  • The injured have been taken to Glasgow Royal Infirmary, Western Infirmary and the Victoria Infirmary
  • The fire service said there were people trapped in the building but they could not say how many
Some of the injured were taken to a nearby Holiday Inn Express, while more serious casualties were being treated in hospital.

As he left the accident and emergency department of Glasgow Royal Infirmary, a staff member who did not want to be interviewed was asked how serious the injuries were. He replied: "Very".

Glasgow's Health Board said it had put in place its "well-rehearsed major emergency arrangements" and that local hospitals had been on "immediate standby".

A large area of the city centre has been cordoned off.

Images of the crash showed the wreckage of a dark blue helicopter with a yellow "Police" insignia lying on the pub's roof.

Police Scotland Deputy Chief Constable Rose Fitzpatrick said: "At 22:25 on Friday evening, the Police Scotland helicopter - a Eurocopter EC135 T2 - came down on the roof of the Clutha Vaults pub in Stockwell Street, Glasgow.

"There were three people on board - two police officers and a civilian pilot. There were a number of customers inside the bar at the time."

She said the rescue operation was ongoing and it was too early to provide any details around why the helicopter came down. 

Helicopter operator Bond Air Services said it was working with the police and emergency services.

Jim Murphy, the Labour MP for East Renfrewshire, was in the area at the time of the crash and said he ran into the pub to help before emergency services arrived.

He told the Info breakers there was "pandemonium" as people tried to get out of the pub.
Emergency services outside  
Emergency services said there have been "numerous" casualties
 
"It was almost like slow motion," he said, adding: "People just formed a bit of human chain, side by side with each other, to help pull injured people out."

The shadow cabinet minister, who had blood on his shirt which he said was not his, described what he saw as a "horrific scene". 

The band who were playing in the pub at the time of the crash, Esperanza, have released a statement on their Facebook page.

Bassist Jess wrote: "Waking up and realising that it is all definitely horribly real. Despite the situation everyone was so helpful and caring of each other. 

"The police, ambulances, firefighters all did a stellar job and continue to do so today in extremely difficult conditions."

Eyewitness Fraser Gibson, 34, was inside the pub with his brother to see his former band, Esperanza.

"Midway through their set it sounded like a giant explosion," he told BBC Scotland. 

"Part of the room was covered in dust. We didn't know what had happened. We froze for a second; there was panic and then people trying to get out the door."

Mr Gibson added: "I would say there was maybe 120 people inside the pub. A lot of people managed to get out straight away, but it was hard to tell how many were actually trapped in the other half of the bar.

He said there had been no indication a helicopter had caused the devastation, adding: "The roof had just totally collapsed. 

"There were shards of wood sticking out the top but nothing that said there had been a helicopter crash."

Eddie Waltham, a former firefighter who had a friend inside the pub, told the BBC: "A roof joist came down and hit him and pushed him towards the window which is at the left side of the left door."

He added later: "My own reaction was to run straight up to the pub.

"It was amazing to watch just how people were trying so hard to get into this building." 

John McGarrigle who said he feared his father had been in the pub at the time said: "I've checked every hospital and there's no sign of him. I'm very anxious. 

"I'm just going to stand here till I see casualties come out of the building."
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