No contact with PSG, insists Arsenal boss Wenger

The Frenchman has denied contact with les Parisiens and praised Carlo Ancelotti for guiding his side to the brink of Ligue 1 success this season

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has denied that he has been contact by Paris Saint-Germain and insists that he will stay where he is this summer.

“I have had no contact with PSG,” he told BeIn Sport. “Carlo Ancelotti has done a good job and I do not see why he would leave the club by viewing the quality of his work this season.

“And for my part, I have a contract with Arsenal, where I have served for 17 years and I do not see myself leaving the club like a thief and not respecting my contract.”

More to follow…

Stramaccioni dismisses need for Inter overhaul

The Roman believes that, once he gets back all of his injured players, the Nerazzurri will only need to bring in a few top signings to challenge for trophies again

Inter coach Andrea Stramaccioni insists that the struggling Serie A giants do not need an overhaul and that not many “top-quality signings” are required this summer as many people believe.

The Nerazzurri have endured a disastrous campaign, with their early hopes of a title challenge having been derailed by a torrid injury crisis and stunning dip in form which has left them ninth in the table ahead of their Genoa showdown with just two games to go.

Stramaccioni freely admits that Inter need to strengthen during the close-season but he is adamant that they still have the makings of a good squad.

“Yes, we do need to make some top-quality signings, but, in terms of numbers, fewer than you might imagine,” the Roman is quoted as saying by his club’s official website.

“Inter have a good base here: it can be improved but it’s already good. Inter came out of the January window with an exceptional player and that’s Mateo Kovacic. Finding a player that good at just 19 is extraordinary.”

Stramaccioni also rejected the notion that he has contributed to Inter’s struggles this year by failing to implement a clearly defined strategy and style of play, arguing that the unavailability of so many players through injury has hindered him greatly in that regard.

“That’s the criticism which hurts the most on a personal level because I made my way up to Serie A always playing the same system, setting my teams up in a very precise way,” he confessed.

“If a coach is successful for 12 years using a particular formation and then changes it’s because he believes he can get more out of what’s available to him by doing so.

“Next year we’ll have a very clear tactical system. I’m sorry about the criticism but Inter always comes first.

“This is my first full season in Serie A and it’s the first time I’ve experienced an injury crisis like this. There’s certainly a huge dollop of bad luck involved but no one wants to hide everything behind that.

“We’ve looked at what we can do better and we’re keeping our analysis in house, but a situation like the one we find ourselves in at the moment can’t not affect things. We’re playing with a totally different squad.”

Meanwhile, Stramaccioni revealed that Antonio Cassano is set to play some part in Sunday’s Serie A clash with Genoa.

“Cassano is recovering well,” he explained. “He had a nasty injury and he’s not 100 per cent yet but he can play a part tomorrow, perhaps not from the off but at some point during the game.”

Inter’s game against Genoa at the Luigi Ferraris is set to kick off at 15:00CET.

The Sweeper: Bale's father to have major say as Tottenham winger prepares to stay put

The PFA Player of the Year could yet stay put at White Hart Lane despite interest from Manchester United and Real Madrid while Sir Alex Ferguson gets set to jet off to America

Gareth Bale cited his father, Frank, as the most important influence on his career when the Tottenham star collected his Football Writers’ Association footballer of the year award on Thursday night.

And Spurs also have Bale’s dad to thank as the 23-year-old looks likely to stay at Spurs next season, regardless of whether or not they achieve Champions League qualification.

Frank Bale is understood to be adamant that his son’s career would be best served by remaining at White Hart Lane next season despite interest from some of Europe’s biggest clubs.

The attacker’s representatives from Stellar Group have been sounding out interest in their client while Spurs chairman Daniel Levy has already rebuffed enquiries from Real Madrid and Manchester United for a player whom he values at €80 million.

But Bale’s parents may well have the final say, with the Welshman – once described as a “home boy” by former Spurs boss Harry Redknapp – making it clear how much he values his family.

“Every day when he came home from work, I would nag my Dad to take me out [to play football] and eventually he would,” said Bale on Thursday night.

“He has given up most of his life to take me to youth-team games and he still comes to games now. He has been a massive inspiration to me and everything I do is for him and my mum.”

– Greg Stobart

Forget the hairdryer, Sir Alex Ferguson is clearing his office of his most treasured possessions after his decision to step down as manager at Old Trafford.

The retiring Manchester United chief has a plaque which reads ‘ayecumfegovan’ above his desk – a nod to his Glasgow home and his players’ difficulty in understanding his dialect.

But he will leave David Moyes a welcome present when the current Everton manager takes over at the end of the current campaign.

He has a lucky teapot which he and his coaches have used ever since he arrived some 26 years ago.

It has taken a major battering down the years but Ferguson insists that it even goes on away trips and, to emphasise its importance, kit man Albert Morgan was once hastily dispatched back to Carrington when they left the teapot behind on a trip to London.

– Paul Clennam

Loic Remy is desperate to leave QPR in the summer following the Londoners’ relegation to the Championship but the France international will have to accept a pay cut upon quitting the club.

The former Marseille striker earns a whopping €106,000-a-week salary – a figure that is €23,000 more than it was originally understood that he was being paid at Loftus Road.

Liverpool and Tottenham are both monitoring the 26-year-old’s situation but have been told that Remy wants a deal that matches his terms at QPR – a scenario which neither club is willing to accept.

Remy is available for around €6 million this summer and has impressed in the Premier League since joining QPR from Marseille in a €9m move in January.

Clubs from Italy and Russia have also expressed an interest in the versatile forward, who has scored five league goals for the Rs and has spoken of his desire to remain in England.

– Greg Stobart

After 26 years of dedication to Manchester United, one of Ferguson’s early retirement plans is to escape the country entirely and embark on an American road trip with his wife, Cathy.

The history buff has never had the time to fulfil his ambition and will set aside three months after he recovers from a hip operation this summer.

Fergie wants to visit the Alamo and the various Presidential libraries situated across the country before returning to fulfil a role as director and ambassador for the Old Trafford club.

– Paul Clennam

'I want to stay at Marseille for the rest of my career' – Barton

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Conte dismisses Ferguson comparisons

The 43-year-old does not believe he will be with the Serie A champions for anything like the same length of time the Manchester United boss has remained at Old Trafford

Juventus coach Antonio Conte has dismissed comparisons with Sir Alex Ferguson and believes it would be “boring” to stay with the same club for 26 years.

Conte spent 13 years with the Bianconeri as a player and has been in charge of the side for a further two – clinching a second successive Serie A title last week.

But with the Manchester United boss announcing his retirement after 26 years at Old Trafford, Conte has dismissed comparisons with the outgoing Scot.

“Me the Ferguson of Juventus? First of all I want to applaud a great manager, but I think it will get boring staying on the same bench for as long as 26 years,” Conte remarked elusively after the match.

“I dont think we could’ve achieved anything more in these two years. We achieved the absolute maximum. The players have done magnificent things.

“If someone thinks I am happy at just winning the league though, they are mistaken. I’m hungrier than ever. A coach always has to find ways to improve the squad. It’s not just about the quality, but the hunger to win.

“Everyone will expect bigger things from us. They’ll want us to win the Scudetto again and to do better in the Champions League. We will do our best.”

Earlier on Friday, the former midfielder told BBC Sport he would be tempted by a move to the Premier League in the future: “I didn’t go abroad as as a football player. I would love to do it as a manager,” he added.

“I hope, in the future, to be a coach in the Premier League. I have this aspiration, as this would enable me to improve my professional career. And the time will come for that.”