Di Matteo rewarded with a two-year deal at Chelsea


ROBERTO DI Di Matteo has gained his reward for steering Chelsea to Champions League and FA Cup glory last season by being appointed manager on a permanent basis. The former Italy midfielder has signed a two-year contract with the Londoners.

The 42-year-old is the eighth manager to have worked under Roman Abramovich since the Russian billionaire bought the Premier League club in 2003, following Claudio Ranieri, Jose Mourinho, Avram Grant, Luiz Felipe Scolari, Guus Hiddink, Carlo Ancelotti and Andre Villas-Boas.

The English Premier League have sold their live television broadcast rights to Sky and BT for a total of €3.8 billion. Sky have bought five of the seven available packages for the seasons 2013/14 to 2015/16, totalling 116 matches per year. BT have acquired the rights for 32 matches that season but their package includes 18 of the 38 first-choice picks.

The Premier League have secured a remarkable €1.6 billion increase on the current deal, which is shared between Sky and ESPN.

Former Finland goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen has agreed to leave relegated Bolton Wanderers for promoted Premier League side West Ham United. The 37-year-old will sign a one-year contract with an option for a second year when his Bolton deal runs out at the end of the month.

Jaaskelainen previously worked with Sam Allardyce when the West Ham manager was in charge at Bolton.

Tito Vilanova was last night confirmed as Pep Guardiola’s successor as Barcelona coach, agreeing a two-year contract to take charge at the Nou Camp until June 2014.

Former Portugal international Carlos Manuel has been named as coach of Guinea Bissau, days before they take on Cameroon in the African Nations Cup qualifiers.

Johan Djourou maintains he is not seeking a transfer from Arsenal. The 25-year-old back has been linked with a switch to Napoli. “I want to deny what has been in the press about my transfer,” said the Swiss international. “I have been at Arsenal for 10 years and I am always committed.”

Back at Euro 2012, England defender Martin Kelly missed training yesterday because of a virus while Ashley Cole left the session early with a physio. Kelly, a Liverpool reserve drafted into the squad after Gary Cahill joined a raft of injured players, could be a doubt for tomorrow’s second Group D match with Sweden.

Manchester United-bound midfielder Shinji Kagawa wants to be the creative spark the 19-times English champions have been missing once he completes the formalities of his transfer to Old Trafford.

Borussia Dortmund and Kagawa have agreed terms with United and the player only needs to pass a medical and obtain a work permit to become manager Alex Ferguson’s first big signing of the close season.

“I want to play (in the hole),” said Kagawa yesterday. “I feel like that’s where I play my best football. I plan on working hard so I can win my place at the position.

“They’re one of the biggest clubs in the world, and I was given a chance to play for them.

“I took a lot of things into consideration, like the fact that they’ve got a deep squad, their style of football and it wasn’t an easy decision. But I wanted the challenge.”