Heart problem halts move
France striker Steve Savidan’s career could be over after his transfer from Caen to Monaco collapsed because of a heart defect. The 31-year-old told a news conference on Saturday that the problem came to light in medical tests ahead of the proposed move. “What’s happening is a real mental blow,” Savidan said. “Unfortunately I shall not be able to join Monaco and I shall probably have to end my career depending on further medical exams.” Savidan won his only cap in a friendly against Paraguay in November.
Black Cat joins Bluebirds
Cardiff have completed the signing of striker Michael Chopra from Sunderland for a club-record fee. Chopra, who agreed a three-year deal worth in the region of £4 million (US$6.5 million), told Cardiff’s official Web site: “I’m really glad it’s all sorted now and, like all the other lads, I’m excited and determined to go that extra mile to gain promotion.” The 25-year-old is the third player to sign for Cardiff this week after the arrival of center-backs Mark Hudson and Anthony Gerrard.
Fee fails to faze Ronaldo
Portuguese striker Cristiano Ronaldo said on Saturday that the 94 million euros (US$131 million) Real Madrid paid for him was a “fair price” and he is delighted to be the most expensive player in the world. The former Manchester United player will put the finishing touches to his move tonight when he is officially unveiled as the Spanish giants’ latest signing. “I think it’s a fair price,” Ronaldo told sports daily Marca. “If Manchester and Real reached agreement on this figure there’s nothing to add. The top footballers cost a lot and if you want them you have to pay. I’m happy to be the most expensive player in the world.” Real Madrid signed Ronaldo on a six-year deal worth where he is believed to be going to earn 13 million euros a year, becoming the world’s highest-paid soccer player. Last year’s world player of the year will be presented today at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium with an estimated 80,000 fans expected to attend.
Wolves splash cash again
Wolverhampton Wanderers have signed Olympique Marseille’s former France under-21 defender Ronald Zubar on a four-year deal, the club said on Saturday. The 24-year-old, who has joined for an undisclosed fee, became the sixth signing of the close season for the Premier League newcomers and their fourth in the last week. “Ronald is a quick powerful defender who has played for the French under-21s and has got Champions League experience as well,” Wolves manager Mick McCarthy was quoted as saying on the club’s official Web site.
■CONCACAF GOLD CUP
US put four past Grenada
The US, who are fresh from their Confederations Cup success, got their Gold Cup tournament off to a successful start with a 4-0 defeat of lowly Grenada on Saturday. The defending champions got goals from Freddy Adu, Stuart Holden, Robbie Rogers and Charlie Davies. The US outshot world No. 88 Grenada 25-3. They will also face Honduras on Wednesday and Haiti on July 11 in Washington and Foxborough, Massachusetts. The US has won three of the last four events and four times since the tournament began in 1991. Meanwhile, Carlo Costly headed goal in the 76th minute was enough for Honduras to edge Haiti 1-0 on Saturday in their group opener.