European Soccer

Afternoon Ticker: Rooney and Ferdinand fit, Feilhaber return looming and more

Rooney Ferdinand 1 (Getty Images)


Some of Manchester United's fears heading into the club's Champions League quarterfinals match against Bayern Munich were eased on Monday, as Rio Ferdinand and Wayne Rooney were deemed fit enough to play.

Rooney and Ferdinand missed United's 4-0 dismantling of Bolton Wanderers over the weekend with a bruised foot and groin injury, respectively, but the English duo made the trip to Germany on Monday morning.

The first leg of the quarterfinals match will be played on Tuesday at Allianz Arena, with the return leg set for April 7.

Here are some more stories from Monday:

Feilhaber's return approaching

AGF Aarhus will play two games over the next seven days, and Benny Feilhaber is expected to make his return from an ankle injury during that time.

Feilhaber resumed training with the first team last week, and is targeting to play against Esbjerg on Wednesday or Randers FC on April 5. Feilhaber has yet to play for Aarhus since the club returned from its winter break.

Eriksson starting World Cup preparations

Sven-Goran Eriksson was confirmed as the manager of Ivory Coast for the 2010 World Cup on Sunday, and the Swedish manager is wasting no time in starting his preparations. Eriksson told reporters he would start traveling on Tuesday to watch players in Europe and Ivory Coast before he selects his World Cup squad in little over a month. Ivory Coast was drawn into Group G with North Korea, Portugal and Brazil.

Zola to continue as West Ham manager

Gianfranco Zola has decided on his future with West Ham United and elected to stay with the club as it fights to avoid relegation. After the Hammers' sixth consecutive defeat this past weekend, Zola spent the past couple days in Italy pondering his future, but decided he is still the man that can help the club remain in the Premier League. West Ham has six games left this season, starting with Everton on Saturday.


Does Bayern Munich have no chance of winning now that Ferdinand and Rooney are fit? Think Feilhaber will help Aarhus end the season strongly? How do you see Ivory Coast faring with Eriksson at the helm? Are you hoping Zola and West Ham avoid relegation?

Share your thoughts below.

  • Erik

    How did Eriksson land a job with the Ivory Coast team? He has been horrible in recent years as a coach.


  • BetaMale

    Mexico gig aside, Sven has actually been a great coach by winning on almost every level. By all standards he got an average England team to overachieve in the World Cup as well.


  • OmarVizquel

    The guy has the greatest gig in sports. Achieve average results for a year or two, travel the globe, rack up frequent flier miles, get fired, and move on to the next sucker. Oh, and make lots of dough.


  • BetaMale

    also I totally want West Ham to go down, because Milwall is looking like they have a great chance to promote to the Colaship. This will make for two barn-burners (perhaps literally) next season. Love the West Ham v Milwall battles


  • Josh D

    Err… He’s also one of the most decorated and successful managers still plying their trade. He bombed with Mexico but that was never going to work out, he did extremely well for City, a bit daft with England but still had 2 quarter final appearances…

    Don’t hop on the hate bandwagon when it’s only going in circles…


  • Josh D

    Hope to see Benny back in form. I think he deserves a spot on the bench as one of the few central midfielders who actually looks happy to have the ball at his feet and composed with dribbling.


  • OmarVizquel

    I’m not saying he’s awful, but I disagree he did anything with England other than achieve about what those teams should have achieved (maybe even a bit less).


  • Curtis

    Feilhaber’s return = awesome.
    Second, Bayern had no chance even if Rooney and Ferdinand sat on the bench. Man U with home and an away wins. I wonder if that 5 goal differential from Milan will be topped — bet it will!


  • Don't think so...

    I don’t think many English fans will agree with you that they were average…


  • Sven is going in Circles...

    I think his time has passed. He seems to be reaching for everything these days. It doesn’t matter which job is open, he’ll take it even if it doesn’t suit his skills as a manager.


  • BetaMale

    Yea they will. All English fans think their current team is the best and when looking back they think that all of their teams were rubbish. By English standards, Sven did a great job


  • K Bone

    Indeed, it’s a shame he wasn’t this good for United. Before anyone flips out, I do realize he didn’t play nearly as much last season as he is now, but he did have several chances to prove himself at United and fell short. He did have a very successful first season at United, but he still wasn’t as profilic as he is now. That said, Berbatov is also underachieving of course. I would have loved to have seen Tevez play with Rooney once Ronaldo left and the team no longer revolved around him. Basically if Tevez was playing this well for United this season instead of City, I think they’d have run away with the league. Tis a pity but United are still doing just fine…


  • Felix

    I liked Ivory Coast back in December when the draws where made, and felt they had the potential to be a quarterfinalist and possible semifinalist, but now – I think this is going to be a total disaster for them. Eriksson is going to have two months to gauge his entire roster and develop and alter his tactics around these players. It will not go well. I wouldn’t be surprised if they don’t even make it out of their group now.


  • Spectra

    Rooney’s nagging injuries might cause him problems later on during the World Cup. He keeps getting injured slightly and then returns a couple days later it might catch up to him.


  • phil

    agreed! if he and Torres can establish themselves legitimate as starters they will revolutionize our playing style by 2014


  • phil

    well said… wonder how many folks who are still clamoring for Bradley Senior to be replaced understand how little time 2 months is to develop a side? Cote d’Ivoire are talented, but it’s a team sport….


  • wmtwhuff@yahoo.com


    Ives can you help out? Scores and stats and recaps and ETC have been all over the place.

    Fantasy League needs your insight. Don’t change the scoring system, just make it official from a source that is reliable. I have not seen any site that lists goals, assists, cautions yellow or red and substitutions per minute ALL IN ONE REPORT.

    MFLS isn’t sponsored or anything like that however is the MOST competitive by far. Thank you. Huff


  • RLW2020

    its a team sport and they are going up against two of the best in the world. Brazil and Portugal make it past Sven, Drogba and crew..


  • DC Josh

    Ferdinand is old and out of shape. He has nothing to do with Robben and Ribery blazing down the wings.

    It’s all up to Rooney, but I think this game tommorrow is tricky for United.


  • United

    There is some truth in this, but he did score some very important goals for United; they would not have gotten to consecutive Champions League finals without him.


  • Erik

    I think you are right. My OP suggested that he has been horrible in recent years. I think he did a good job with England and at Lazio he was impressive as well.

    But as you say, his time has passed.


  • SteveSampson

    “I disagree he did anything with England other than achieve about what those teams should have achieved (maybe even a bit less).”

    OV – Given the climate surrounding those England teams, what he did accomplish consitutes a good job, especially as compared to the job done by his predecessors and his successors.

    Until Capello showed up England fans always had delusionally high, hyper – inflated expectations. No matter what they are paying him Capello would have been a bargain at twice the price.


  • Wedonneednostinkindefense

    If you call having the opposing midfielders running through our midfield and doing whatever they want unchallenged a revolution then, yes, those two will revolutionize our playing style.


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