AHEAD OF THE GAME: Leicester City’s Wes Morgan in line for PFA role while imminent £60m Derby County takeover by Abu Dhabi businessman baffles Newcastle and Bournemouth
- Wes Morgan may help choose the PFA’s new chief executive in a four-man group
- Derby County’s new £60m takeover has stunned Newcastle and Bournemouth
- Wilfried Zaha could end up leaving Crystal Palace due to Jay-Z influence
- Profits from Gareth Southgate’s new book will go to the Prince’s Trust
Leicester captain Wes Morgan is one of the more intriguing candidates to become one of the four independent non-executive directors of the PFA who will appoint a replacement for chief executive Gordon Taylor.
The 36-year-old is actively making plans for a new career after he retires at the end of the season, which could also involve an administrative role at Leicester, and is eager to ensure that the current generation of players are given greater representation at the PFA.
As Sportsmail revealed earlier this week, the PFA’s three-man selection panel chaired by Gary Neville have assembled a 40-strong shortlist for the four positions and will begin interviewing next week.
Wes Morgan could be part of a four-man group to appoint a new PFA chief executive
The tortuous progress of negotiations over the EFL bailout have not been helped by the fact that the Premier League did not initially tell their clubs that they had committed to providing the lower leagues with a rescue package last May.
Premier League sources insist they were waiting to receive a specific demand from Government for aid, which has still not been forthcoming six months later, leading to the stand-off that has led to the chief executives Richard Masters and Rick Parry being summoned before the DCMS Select Committee to explain themselves next week.
£60M DERBY DEAL STUNS CLUBS
Derby’s imminent £60million takeover by Sheik Khaled Bin Zayed Al Nehayan has caused incredulity at several other clubs who have previously had dealings with the Abu Dhabi businessman.
Newcastle sources have privately dismissed Bin Zayed’s investment company as time wasters after they made an acceptable offer for the club but failed to produce the money last summer, while it can be revealed for the first time that Bournemouth also held talks with the group without agreeing a deal this summer.
The EFL are also understood to have their concerns, but at a board meeting on Thursday they concluded that under the existing regulations they could not block the sale, which led to Derby announcing that the takeover was close yesterday.
Derby County could be taken over by Abu Dhabi’s Sheik Khaled Bin Zayed Al Nehayan
Newcastle and Bournemouth have dealt with Bin Zayed in the past but failed to agree deals
Bin Zayed is widely referred to as being a cousin of Manchester City owner Sheik Mansour, but the precise nature of their relationship is unclear.
Meanwhile, Derby are delaying the seemingly inevitable decision to sack Phillip Cocu as it will cost them £4m in compensation to remove the manager and his back-room team.
The Dutchman is entitled to 12 months of his £90,000-a-week salary if he is dismissed mid season, and assistants Chris van der Weerden and Twan Scheepers must also be paid off.
Wilfried Zaha’s decision to join the sports division of Jay-Z’s entertainment agency Roc Nation could help him secure a transfer from Crystal Palace next summer.
While Zaha’s contract with Roc Nation is primarily a commercial deal, the American agency’s owners are understood to be close to Palace’s co-owners Josh Harris and David Blitzer, a relationship the Ivory Coast international is hoping could smooth his departure from Selhurst Park.
Zaha has sought to leave Palace to further his career in each of the last two transfer windows, but despite interest from Arsenal and Everton no club has yet met his employers’ £70m valuation.
Wilfried Zaha’s move to the Roc Nation agency could see him leave Crystal Palace next year
Gareth Southgate will donate all profits from his new book to the Prince’s Trust youth charity
Gareth Southgate will donate all profits from his new book, Anything is Possible, to the Prince’s Trust youth charity.
The England manager wrote the book, which combines reflections on his career with a study in leadership and will be released later this month, during the first lockdown.
Southgate is an ambassador for the Prince’s Trust, the charity founded by the Prince of Wales which helps to provide opportunities for vulnerable youngsters to access education, training and employment.
The EFL have bucked market trends by securing an increase in sponsorship for the EFL Trophy for the next three years.
The new contract, which will see the cup competition for the bottom two divisions rebranded as the Papa John’s Trophy, is worth £700,000 a season to the EFL, a £100,000-a-year increase on the previous title sponsorship with Leasing.com.
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