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Wednesday Kickoff: Mourinho bashes FA again; Rossi targets April return; and more

Chelsea Manager Jose Mourinho

By RYAN TOLMICH

Jose Mourinho has once again spoken out against perceived inconsistencies in the English FA’s disciplinary process.

Leicester City manager Nigel Pearson was not punished for a sideline scuffle with Crystal Palace midfielder James McArthur. Mourinho, who has repeatedly stated his belief in a “campaign” against Chelsea, says he would have been punished heavily for any sideline incident, much like the one the Portuguese manager got into with Arsenal’s Arsene Wenger earlier this season.

“I have only thoughts about myself, not about Nigel,” Mourinho said. “If I push a manager in my technical area, you know that I will be stadium banned. We all know. Why? We don’t know. You can’t say we don’t know why, but I think we all know that if I do something like that I would be in serious, serious trouble.

“I can be very defensive and say nothing, or I can be myself and say what I feel. And then there is a line where you never know the way they [the FA] analyze it and they think you can or can’t say that. Press conferences, especially after matches, are very, very difficult for us.”

Here are some more news and notes to kick off your Wednesday morning:

ROSSI TARGETS APRIL RETURN

Much like the previous few seasons, 2014-15 has been an injury-riddled campaign for Giuseppe Rossi, but the Italian forward has circled a date on his calendar for a possible return.

Rossi has been out of action since injuring his right knee in August, but the Fiorentina forward has targeted his side’s April 29 matchup with Juventus for his return.

“I’ve noticed that the game against Juventus is on April 29,” he said. “It would be nice to play such a prestigious game, but I must not push it, right now I should only think about doing my work [toward recovery].

“I am dying to get back in the pitch, but that was a given. Still, I’m not going to set any date for my return, I don’t want to rush it, I want to take it slowly and come back when I’m at 100 percent.”

Rossi also reiterated his faith in Fiorentina, which sold playmaker Juan Cuadrado to Chelsea in the January transfer window.

“In January, Cuadrado left (for Chelsea), it’s true,” Rossi said, “but (Alessandro) Diamanti replaced him and on Sunday he was decisive to gather three points for us. (Mohamed) Salah also joined us and he did very well against Atalanta. We’re pleased and now we must keep on fighting.”

MOROCCO REJECTS BAN FROM CAF

Morocco looks set to fight sanctions given to the country for refusing to host the African Cup of Nations.

The Confederation of African Football hit the nation with a two-tournament ban as well as massive fines for pulling out of hosting duties in response to the ebola virus. However, Morocco’s representatives say they are “totally stunned” but CAF’s punishment.

The nation is reportedly divided on whether to attempt to negotiate a lighter penalty with CAF or take the decision to the Court of Arbitration of Sport for an appeal.

Faouzi Lakjaa, president of the nation’s confederation, says he will take “all measures he deems appropriate.”

ESPANYOL PRESIDENT THREATENS STRIKE OVER TV MONEY

The Premier League signed a record TV deal on Tuesday, and now La Liga’s Espanyol wants a bigger piece of the local pie.

Espanyol president Joan Collet hit out at the uneven split of money in the Spanish system, saying that “any team in the Premier League can sign your best player by doubling [his] salary.” As a result, Collet threatened to strike in an effort to see money distributed more evenly away from powers Barcelona and Real Madrid.

“We’re willing to bring La Liga to a halt through the LFP if a decree isn’t issued about the regularization of TV rights,” Collet said. “If they don’t get their act together, we’re willing to do it…I have to admit that Barça aren’t looking the other way, they agree that something has to change so long as they don’t end up so much as a single euro worse off. Real Madrid haven’t said anything.

“A lot of clubs have already signed deals for 2015-16, but if a decree is issued then the contracts can be cancelled from the following season. The decree could be in place by then, but we can’t negotiate at present. Our hands and feet are tied and we remain in the shameful situation that the top two clubs earn the most [from TV] in all of Europe.”

QUICK KICKS

Real Madrid’s planned stadium renovation has been halted by the local government. (REPORT)

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has concerns after Alexis Sanchez and Aaron Ramsey suffered injuries in the team’s 2-1 victory over Leicester on Tuesday. (REPORT)

Michael Laudrup’s agent said it would be difficult for Queens Park Rangers to secure his client’s managerial services. (REPORT)

Borussia Dortmund says that Marco Reus rejected more money from bigger clubs to stay with the club. (REPORT)

What do you think of Mourinho’s statements? When do you expect to see Rossi take the field? What do you think Morocco should do? How do you see Espanyol’s complaints playing out?

Share your thoughts below.

Comments

  1. Maybe it’s my soft spot for Mourinho’s mad genius, but I have to agree with him. What Nigel Pearson did was inexcusable and pretty uncomfortable to watch. I can’t understand how he receives no reprimand whatsoever from the FA. Very strange non-reaction.

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  2. I thought Ives would fix iPad ads that shift you to App Store for “Game of a Thrones” and “Candy Crush.” This website has been embedded with them for months.

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    • So do they have the equivalent of the swear jar where he just drops a few quid in a bottle and then mouths off about the FA semi-regularly? Which they use to fund the season end banquet or something?

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