IN THIS week's footballing finance news the spotlight is pointed towards the offspring of the Glazer Empires debt leveraged club, FC United, who have been accredited as a Living Wage employer - making them the first football club in Britain to have signed up to the scheme.
It means that anyone on the books at FC United, from stewards to bar staff and contractors, will receive at least £7.65, which is considerably higher than the national minimum wage requirement of £6.50, although considerably lower than £240,000 Radamel Falcao picks up every week.
Manchester City Women
City Ladies beat their male counterparts to the first piece of silverware of the season, proving that Pellegrini really should have taken the Charity Shield more seriously. City beat Arsenal Ladies 1-0 in the final of the Continental Cup ending their three year hold on the trophy in the process. After a difficult first half where Arsenal dominated both possession and chances but importantly converted neither into actual goals, Isobel Christiansen headed in the games only goal to win the game and take home the City Ladies first trophy in 28 years.
One year ago it started with an awful performance in the Head & Shoulders advert and then led to dismal form in the Premier League, then Manuel Pellegrini decided to drop Joe Hart. Fast forward a year and though Sergio Aguero’s goals will be the lasting memory of the match (he scored just the four this time out) it was Hart's penalty save from Soldado, when the game was finely balanced at 2-1, that gave City the confidence to run out winners. Add this to couple of first half blocks it is clear to see that Hart is starting to return to some of his best form.
Aguero also became City’s all time leading Premier League scorer when he scored his 59th for club, putting him on top of the list ahead of former city strikers Jo, Benjani and David James.
It's been a strange experience watching Manchester United over the past few years. First the team's appearance on Channel 5 on a Thursday night and now we have seen them appear on Monday Night Football - tell tale signs that there is no Champions League football at Old Trafford. With West Brom having not won an away game in five attempts, United chose to rest Falcao to the bench after his recent international exertions. Despite dominating possession, chances had to come from behind twice to salvage a draw. This point make United unbeaten in three games, yet puts them only one point better off than this time last year which ultimately saw them sack manager David Moyes for underachieving.
Sale’s return to Europe’s premier competition produced a last minute agonising defeat to Irish heavyweights Munster. The first half produced arguably some of Sale’s best plays this season. English Viking Magnus Lund and Samoan 'wrecking ball', Johnny Leota, sustained pressure and high intensity leads. It was a positive day off the field for the club,as 10,500 fans enjoyed live music, cheap stadium beers and an atmosphere to rival Europe’s best. The second half left the crowd watching what Munster have been doing since Cipriani was just a vodka stealing teenager; they ground Sale down keeping the scoreboard ticking to what seemed like an dramatic yet inevitable conclusion. After being widely written off as the whipping boys of the group, if nothing else Sale will have given Clermont and Saracens something to think about. A last minute drop goal from Keatley and a one point 26-27 loss is always going to hurt, but Sale can take positives that they’ll be far from the last to fall to the efficient Munster machine.
Club of the Year Award
CollyHurst & Moston ABC, the club that produced champions such as Scott Quigg, has been awarded North West boxing club of the year. The club enjoyed success under the training regime of Brian Hughes and now hopes to build on its past successes and develop the next generation of locally produced stars.
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