Morning Ticker: Grant leaves Pompey, Ribery staying put and more

Morning Ticker: Grant leaves Pompey, Ribery staying put and more

European Soccer

Morning Ticker: Grant leaves Pompey, Ribery staying put and more

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GrantReuters

By AVI CREDITOR

Avram Grant, who took over at Portsmouth mid-season and guided the club to the FA Cup final, has resigned as manager and appears set to become Gianfranco Zola's replacement at West Ham.

Grant undertook the position at Fratton Park despite Portsmouth's financial straits, with the team eventually going into administration and being docked nine points that sealed relegation well before season's end.

The biggest surprise in this development, though, is who is being named as a potential successor to Grant with Pompey.

David James, who is currently vying to be England's No. 1 goalkeeper at the World Cup, will reportedly be contacted by Portsmouth administrator Andrew Andronikou about the managerial position.

Here are a few more soccer stories to help get you to the weekend:

REPORT: RIBERY TO STAY AT BAYERN MUNICH

Franck Ribery might not be playing for Bayern Munich in Saturday's Champions League final, but reports say that the much-maligned French winger will stay with the German side on a new four-year deal.

Ribery, who received a red card in the Champions League semifinals and is ineligible for the final against Inter Milan, was rumored to be headed to one of the Premier League giants when the transfer window opened. According to the Daily Mail (UK), Ribery's new deal will have him earning £130,000 a week.

SUBOTIC IN SERBIA'S FINAL 24

Serbia manager Radomir Antic trimmed his roster down to 24 players, and defender Neven Subotic is, not surprisingly, one of the remaining players in Serbia's camp.

The six players who didn't make the cut were Nemanja Matic, Miralem Sulejmani, Slobodan Rajkovic, Jagos Vukovic, Nemanja Tomic and Dejan Lekic.

The final player to be cut figures to be a goalkeeper, considering that four goalkeepers remain on Antic's 24-man roster.

VILLA-TO-BARCELONA COMPLETE

David Villa passed his physical and officially signed his four-year contract with Barcelona, a deal that includes an option for a fifth year.

Villa and former Valencia teammate David Silva figure to form a rivalry over the years should Real Madrid put the finishing touches on its negotiations with Silva. Both players will team to try and guide Spain to a World Cup title this summer.

ROBINHO PREFERS TO STAY IN BRAZIL

Brazilian forward Robinho got his wish when he was loaned to his hometown side Santos from Manchester City, but he would prefer that the move becomes permanent.

Considering how heavy his contract with Manchester City is, there's no way Santos would be able to purchase him outright, but there would appear to be little chance of an amicable reunion between Robinho and the Citizens either.

SAF: BERBATOV STAYING IN MANCHESTER

Sir Alex Ferguson has stated that he won't be selling striker Dimitar Berbatov despite reports and rumors that state the contrary.

Berbatov hasn't fulfilled the lofty expectations thrust on him when he signed with the Red Devils from Tottenham, though he did manage to score 12 goals this past season. The Bulgarian forward will be part of the Manchester United team that faces the Major League Soccer All-Stars this summer in Houston.

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Who do you think should take over at Portsmouth? How far do you think Grant can take West Ham? Surprised to see Ribery staying in Munich? Excited that Berbatov will be playing in the MLS All-Star game?

Share your thoughts below.

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