Postecoglou inks contract
Greek-born Ange Postecoglou was yesterday appointed the new Socceroos coach following the sacking of German Holger Osieck and will lead them to the World Cup finals in Brazil next year. Football Federation Australia (FFA) handed Postecoglou, 48, a five-year contract that will also see him take the team to the the 2015 Asian Cup in Australia and beyond. “It was always our plan that one day an Australian would be appointed coach and I said precisely that when we appointed the previous coach,” FFA chairman Frank Lowy said. “The fact that Ange is the best qualified, and an Australian, achieves our objective.”
Gallas signs for Perth Glory
French defender William Gallas yesterday joined Perth Glory in Australia’s A-League after being released by English Premier League side Tottenham Hotspur. The former Chelsea and Arsenal star said he was looking forward to the challenge, opting for Perth despite reported interest from Manchester City, Crystal Palace and clubs in the Middle East and the US. “I look forward to wearing with pride the jersey of Perth Glory for this season,” he said in a statement after agreeing to a one-year deal, subject to a medical. The 36-year-old spent more than a decade at top clubs Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham, where he played 24 matches as vice captain last season. He was also capped 84 times by France and will be the first French player in Australia’s domestic competition, which features several other former greats, led by Italian superstar Alessandro del Piero.
Heal elected NZ chairman
Businessman Stuart Heal has been elected chairman of New Zealand Cricket to lead a new board helping steer preparations for the 2015 World Cup, which is being co-hosted by Australia. Heal was elected unanimously at the first meeting of the board in Auckland, New Zealand, yesterday. He immediately announced a new shared leadership model which would take advantage of the skills and experience of board members. Former chief executive Martin Snedden, who headed the New Zealand organization that ran the 2011 Rugby World Cup, will represent New Zealand on the International Cricket Council. Former Test players Richard Hadlee, Geoff Allott and Snedden were named on a new cricket advisory committee.
Athletes to get smartphones
Samsung Electronics Co is giving the Galaxy Note 3 smartphone to all athletes competing at the Sochi Games in Russia in February. The announcement yesterday was part of the South Korea company’s marketing campaign as a sponsor of the Olympic Winter Games. It reflects Samsung’s growing clout in the smartphone market, and willingness to shell out to promote its brand and products.
Lincecum agrees new deal
Two-time Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum has agreed to a reported US$35 million two-year deal to stay with the San Francisco Giants, according to local media on Tuesday. “We see the difference that your starting pitching can make in a make-or-break September or post-season,” Giants assistant general manager Bobby Evans told the San Francisco Chronicle. “The reality is that Tim is a big part of that.” The 29-year-old, who won the World Series in 2010 and last year, enjoyed a sparkling start to his career in San Francisco, but is struggling to recapture his best form.