West Ham wins bid: BBC
West Ham United have been chosen to take over the London 2012 Olympics stadium after fending off rival bidders Tottenham Hotspur, the BBC reported on Wednesday. Both Premier League clubs have submitted bids to the Olympic Park Legacy Co (OPLC) which is to hold a board meeting today to determine which of the two will take over the stadium. Should West Ham, whose plan would retain an athletics track inside the stadium, be confirmed as the OPLC’s recommended bidder it would still need to be ratified by the government and London Mayor Boris Johnson. A spokesman for the OPLC said on Wednesday that no decision had yet been made. “It’s pure speculation,” he said. “Our board will meet on Friday when they will be presented with both bids and vote to recommend a preferred bidder.” The OPLC had been expected to announce which of the two Premier League clubs would be recommended to move to the east London site at the end of last month, but postponed its board meeting, saying its members needed more time to evaluate both proposals.
Renault call Heidfeld
Renault gave Nick Heidfeld’s stalled Formula One career a jump start on Wednesday by calling up the German as a possible replacement for injured Polish driver Robert Kubica. The team said in a statement that Heidfeld, who was Kubica’s teammate at BMW-Sauber for the best part of four years, would join Russian race regular Vitaly Petrov and Brazilian Bruno Senna at the second pre-season test in Jerez, Spain, this week. Kubica is in hospital in Italy after suffering serious arm, leg and hand injuries while competing in a minor rally near Genoa last Sunday. He will be out for several months and could miss the entire season. Senna, nephew of the late triple champion Ayrton, is the official reserve driver, but lacks Heidfeld’s experience. “Vitaly will drive the R31 on Thursday and Friday, as originally scheduled,” said the Lotus-backed team, who also have Italian Vitantonio Liuzzi on their three-man list of possible stand-ins. “For Saturday and Sunday, the team will give mileage to Bruno Senna and will also evaluate Nick Heidfeld, who is a potential replacement for Robert Kubica as a race driver.”
Real, Barca top money list
Europe’s top 20 soccer clubs earned more than 4 billion euros (US$5.46 billion) between them last season, bucking the financial downturn and leaving them well equipped to comply with UEFA’s financial fair play rules. Deloitte’s Football Money League, published yesterday, showed an unchanged top six with Real Madrid and Barcelona leading the way for the second successive year. Real’s revenue last season was 438.6 million euros, up from 401.4 million euros in 2008 to 2009, while Barcelona made 398.1 million euros and will see a substantial rise after securing a 165 million euro, five-year shirt sponsorship deal — the first time the club has had a paid-for shirt sponsor, previously carrying the UNICEF logo. Manchester United, who topped the first six editions of the money league from 1996 to 1997, are third with 349.8 million euros. Bayern Munich are fourth and there are five more English Premier League clubs in the top 12 with Arsenal (fifth), Chelsea (sixth), Liverpool (eighth), Manchester City (11th) and Champions League newcomers Tottenham Hotspur (12th). City were the big climbers, up from 20th (152.8 million euros to 102.2 million euros), and they and Tottenham are both likely to move into the top 10 next year.