Middlesbrough line up former Real Madrid assistant Aitor Karanka as new manager

Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno

Boro are set to name Jose Mourinho’s former No2 Aitor Karanka as their boss.

The is in pole position to succeed Tony Mowbray, and caretaker boss Mark Venus.

Karanka, 40, has been attracting the interest of managerless Crystal Palace after flying to England for talks on Monday

However of landing Karanka who’s agent Jorge Mendez is close to chairman Steve Gibson and the Spaniard is likely to be unveiled tomorrow on a two-and-a-half year deal.

Boro have been considering trying a new development model by linking up with continental clubs and getting talented youngsters on loan to spark a revival.

Karanka managed the Spanish Under-16 side five years ago and knows their youth ranks well.

He also assisted Mourinho at Real Madrid.

, after overseeing a huge reduction in costs during his three-year reign.


Southampton are a model club for others, says England U21 boss Gareth Southgate

Saints FC/ Twitter

England under-21 head coach Gareth Southgate believes that Premier League surprise package Southampton can be the model for others to follow in the future.

sit third in the English top-flight, just two points off the summit, having enjoyed an outstanding start to the season with their brand of high-pressure, possession football.

Mauricio Pochettino’s side signed off for the international break with a – a result that left Steve Bruce singing their praises – in the presence of Hodgson and with six English-born players in their starting XI, while 80 percent of the side were 25 or under.

As such, the south coast side have this week seen five of their most talented Englishman called up for international duty.

Adam Lallana and forward Jay Rodriguez joined Rickie Lambert in for the friendlies and Germany, while Luke Shaw, 18, and James Ward-Prowse, 19, are both part of Southgate’s under-21 squad.

And Southgate believes the investment in youth at St Mary’s shows smaller clubs can find a way of competing against the big-spending sides.

"It is a very well-run football club with a good structure," he said.

"They have invested in the top end but they have also, for a long time, had a very well-run academy and a first-team manager [] who I spent a day with a couple of weeks ago who is really positive about youth development.

"He is always trying to improve the individual player in many aspects and you can see why they are where they are as a club.

"They have tried to develop people as well as players and certainly the boys in our squad have been a credit to them as a club off the field and they can also play.

"It is very impressive what they are doing. When you have structures like that and you identify and develop talent they way they have you get the rewards they are getting now."

Southgate’s side head into their Euro 2015 qualifiers against Finland and San Marino sitting top of Group One, with their last showing having been a .

And Southgate says that morale within the camp is good, and that there have been no lasting recriminations following between and during the game at Portman Road.


"What I said to them was all of the good things both of those two did on the night were overshadowed because we had to answer questions about what they did on the night," added the former Middlesbrough boss.

"There has to be an understanding that now, with the profile of the games they are involved in, that can happen but in terms of the harmony of the group, that has been terrific.

"Socially around the hotel the table tennis table is getting a hammering because they are competitive and it is pleasing to see.

"You don’t see cliques, I see different people walking around with others and the whole group interact really well."

Ramires insists Chelsea have the squad to win everything this season

Kent Gavin

Chelsea midfielder Ramires believes there is no limit to how far the club can go under Jose Mourinho.

are four points off Arsenal at the top of the Premier League

And Ramires, , admits the quality of Chelsea’s squad means they can get their hands on every trophy this season.

Speaking to Brazilian website Sambafoot, he said: "Our team is very strong and we can win it all this season.

"The Premier League is one of the toughest competitions in the world but we have the means to win it."

Ramires was part of the Chelsea squad that lifted the Champions League trophy in 2012, following a remarkable run to the final, under Roberto Di Matteo.

Jose Mourinho’s side have recovered from a bad start to this year’s campaign after losing their opening game to Basel,

They have also progressed to the quarter finals of the Capital One Cup where they will face Gus Poyet’s Sunderland at the Stadium of Light.

However the Brazilian international admits no other success will come close to the European Cup and backs Jose Mourinho to guide the club to even further success.

He added: "Winning the Champions League was one of the greatest moments of my career. I think the only title that can compete with that is the World Cup in Brazil.

"My goals are never personal, but collective. I want to continue to play football and help my team win titles. Collective success makes me stronger individually.

"Mourinho is a very decent coach. He is doing an excellent job and manages to motivate his players and offers a chance to everyone."

Roy Keane turns up for training 90 minutes early on first day as Republic of Ireland assistant boss

Getty Images

Republic of Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane has settled into his new role in typically proficient manner.

arrived at the nation’s training base at Gannon Park at 9:30am this morning, a full 90 minutes before the team’s scheduled arrival.

and Republic of Ireland begin the new era in a friendly against Latvia at the Aviva Stadium on Friday.

Earlier today, Keane was straight onto the training pitch to prepare everything for the morning session, before inspecting the facilities on offer.

Wearing a full training kit, the former Manchester United man signed autographs and posed for photographs with fans, ahead of the first session under the new regime.

The rest of the players arrived at around 10:45 am, led by captain and LA Galaxy striker Robbie Keane, closely followed by their 61-year-old boss.

O’Neill and Keane watched training closely from the sidelines as they look to get the new era off to a winning start.

and hopes the two can revive Irish fortunes, after missing out on next summer’s World Cup.

Getty Images

He said: "I know them both very well, I know the two types of people they are.

"It has got excitement back for the public and the players should be looking forward to working with two inspirational characters."

, suggesting he was wrong to fall out with the then Republic boss Mick McCarthy at the 2002 World Cup.

Ex-England captain Terry Butcher revealed as Hibernian's new manager


Hibernian have today named Terry Butcher as the club’s new manager.

signed a three-year-contract with the Edinburgh club after agreeing a compensation deal over the weekend.

Butcher had been in charge of Inverness Caley Thistle and despite the club being second in the Scottish Premiership table, he has decided to move to Easter Road.

And the former England captain took to Hibernian’s official club website to express his delight at the appointment.

He said: "I’m excited about the future and what we can achieve here at Hibernian.

"It is a great honour to be appointed the new manager of the club."

Assistant Maurice Malpas has also made the switch to Edinburgh, despite being offered the chance to take the managerial position at Inverness.

Butcher was at Easter Road on Saturday as his former club defeated seventh-placed Hibs 2-0, although he had no intention to reverse his decision.

, with Spaniard Aitor Karanka now in line to take over at the Riverside.

Butcher’s first game in charge of his new side will be away against St. Mirren on Saturday.

Italian third division match abandoned over 'injuries' and 'death threats'

Nocerina Derby Game

The club’s sporting director, Luigi Pavarese has since attempted to explain the injuries as genuine, saying: "The lads went onto the pitch without warming up, which caused the injuries."

Nocerina’s "Ultras" issued a statement on Monday saying they did not issue any death threats, but wanted to issue an "unmistakeable message" and "give voice to an unfair act imposed on the fans". 

Local judicial authorities have since begun an inquiry, with around 30 Mastiff fans reportedly at the centre of the investigation.

"This has caused enormous damage, it’s an extremely grave matter," Lega Pro director general Francesco Ghirelli told Italian television.

"We have to reflect on how to prevent these indecent spectacles. It’s a disgrace.

"We will wait for the sporting tribunal to judge this episode which has done huge damage to the Lega Pro."

West Bromwich Albion kit man jokes players should wear Mickey Mouse ears after Chelsea Jose Mourinho jibe

Charlie Crowhurst

West Bromwich Albion’s kit man has claimed he is considering sending the team out for their reverse fixture with Chelsea wearing Mickey Mouse ears.

His comments came after following a tunnel confrontation in the 2-2 on Saturday.

And kitman Pat Frost, who was in the tunnel at Stamford Bridge jokingly put forward his idea on Twitter earlier today.

The tweet read: "Gonna see if I can get 20 sets of big Mickey Mouse ears and ask the lads to wear them in the warm up when Chelsea come to us."

Frost’s post has since been deleted, with the Football Association today announcing they would take no action against either club for the incident.

Tensions boiled over between the two sides after referee Andre Marriner awarded the Blues a last-minute penalty .

Eden Hazard stepped up to convert the spot-kick, with the decision infuriating manager Steve Clarke, who saw his side robbed of a deserved victory.

, labelling the incident a "load of s***".

Mourinho and Olsson were rumoured to have been pulled apart by stewards after the game, following a number of expletives made by the Swedish defender.

It is of course not the first moment of controversy during Mourinho’s high-profile managerial career