Soccer briefs

Sat, Feb 16, 2013, 00:00

A round-up of today's other stories in brief

McShane says he is 'back to his best' under Steve Bruce at Hull

Paul McShane believes he is back playing the best football of his career since breaking back into the Hull City team and rewarding the faith shown in him by manager Steve Bruce with a succession of strong performances for the promotion-chasing Championship side.

“I probably haven’t had a more consistent spell than this,” says the Ireland defender who the club seemed anxious to offload at one stage because of his poor form and high wages.

“I’m 27 now and I’ve got a lot of experience behind me. I’ve learned from my years of playing and I think playing at centre back this year has been one of the main reasons (for my form). I came to the club as a centre back, but I was asked to do a job as a right back in my first game and I seemed to stay there.

“We’ve seen some really good people come into the club this season and the gaffer is a winner. He’s given me the opportunity to play and I really appreciate that.”

Bruce said this week that McShane will be offered a new contract at the end of the season although he made it clear the club’s ability to match the roughly €22,000 per week that the Irishman currently earns depends on it getting into the top flight.


Madden named Player of the Month

Former Bohemians striker Paddy Madden was named yesterday as the League One Player of the Month for January after scoring six goals in three games for Yeovil Town.

The 22 year-old, who made a loan spell at the club permanent after the first of those games, has since scored a further three in three, six matches in which his goals have been key to the club securing all 18 available points. He is now the division’s top scorer.

Walsall will attempt to extend the loan deal they have with MK Dons for Republic of Ireland Under-21 international Ian McLoughlin, who is due to return after today’s game against Notts County.


Caretaker manager Carsley focusing on the job in hand

Coventry City caretaker manager Lee Carsley says that he will be completely focused on his side's game against Bury rather than concerned about who gets to succeed on Mark Robins on a long-term basis with the 38- year-old insisting that he is in no hurry to land his first manager's job.

"We have to attack the Bury game like it's a cup final," says for the former Ireland international, "and a must-win game because there's a lot to play for this season and the ball's still firmly in our court. We don't have to reinvent the wheel, though."

Asked about whether he is interested in the job on a full-time basis, he said: "I have gone down the route of managing and coaching at youth level, which is the usual route a lot of foreign coaches go down, because I wasn't one of those players who felt they could go straight into management. I want to learn my trade first."


Rogers comes out as gay and quits football

United States international Robbie Rogers has come out as gay and says he is stepping away from soccer.

The 25-year-old, who recently played in England for Leeds United and Stevenage and has 18 caps for the USA, wrote on his website - under the title “The Next Chapter” – that he had been afraid to raise the issue.

“Secrets can cause so much internal damage. People love to preach about honesty, how honesty is so plain and simple. Try explaining to your loved ones after 25 years you are gay,” he wrote yesterday.

“For the past 25 years I have been afraid, afraid to show whom I really was . . . Now is my time to step away. It’s time to discover myself away from football.”

Clark omits Zigic following striker's pitiful effort at training

Nikola Zigic has been omitted from Birmingham’s matchday squad for today’s Championship clash at home to Watford after manager Lee Clark accused him of turning in “the worst training session . . . I have ever come across”.

Clark has been angered by Zigic’s poor work ethic and attitude at the club’s Wast Hills training base and has criticised the towering Serbian striker, who still earns a reported €58,000-plus per week at the club.

Clark said: “I witnessed possibly the worst training session in terms of a professional footballer I have ever come across on Thursday . . .

I think the fans deserve more than that, the football club deserves more than that. I am an honest man and I need to be honest with everyone.”

Fifa announces plans to introduce biological profiling

Fifa plans to use biological profiling of players at this year’s Confederations Cup and next year’s World Cup in its efforts to tackle doping, soccer’s governing body confirmed yesterday.

“Fifa is developing plans to introduce this new tool, including a steroid profile through urine and a blood profile, for the Confederations Cup and 2014 World Cup Brazil, where in- and out-of-competition tests would be conducted on all participating players,” the Fifa statement read.

Fifa began a pilot project in 2011 to capture players’ individual steroid profile with tests on the participants at the World Club Cup in Japan. It said that 178 out-of-competition tests were conducted in 2011 and 184 at the same tournament in 2012.

Fifa added that it was developing the hormonal profiling project, a new initiative in co-operation with the Wada-accredited laboratory in Switzerland.

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