The Sport Matrix: Tuesday 20 May 2014


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The Independent Online

Van Gaal takes charge at United...

Louis van Gaal has finally been confirmed as the new manager of Manchester United. The current Netherlands coach, 62, was the favourite to permanently succeed David Moyes, and has vowed to match the club’s ambitions. “Together I’m sure we will make history,” he said.

... as assistant Giggs retires from playing

Van Gaal’s assistant will be Ryan Giggs, with the legendary midfielder calling time on his 23-year playing career at United. Giggs thanked the fans for supporting him in an emotional open letter on the club’s website. There is as yet no news on the future of his Class of ’92 colleagues.

Scudamore backed by Premier League

The Premier League yesterday gave its chief executive Richard Scudamore their full backing, deciding that he will face no further disciplinary action over his sexist email scandal. Many have been critical of Scudamore, who has been in charge of the organisation for 15 years.

Barça bring in old boy Luis Enrique

Barcelona have appointed former midfielder Luis Enrique as their new coach. The 44-year-old, who led Celta Vigo this season, has agreed a two-year deal to take over from the departed Gerardo Martino. Meanwhile, Lionel Messi has signed a new contract at the club.

Wilkinson bows out after iconic career

World Cup winning fly-half Jonny Wilkinson has announced that he will retire at the end of the season. Current England coach Stuart Lancaster said the “phenomenal” Class of ’03 star “changed the way people prepared to play the game.”

Strauss: Cook will lead new era

Former England captain Andrew Strauss believes his successor Alastair Cook has the confidence to build a new England side. “Despite having lost in Australia, I think Alastair will have to be more confident this summer than he was,” he said.

Morgan prepared for Sri Lanka threat

England’s stand-in Twenty20 captain Eoin Morgan is ready to lead from the front against Sri Lanka this evening, with Stuart Broad nursing a knee injury. “It is something I would be inclined to take on,” he said. “I quite enjoy leading.”

Stewart: Brabham was the very best

Sir Jackie Stewart has paid tribute to on-track rival and friend Sir Jack Brabham, the three-time world champion who passed away yesterday at the age of 88. “Jack achieved more than any other driver in the history of Grand Prix racing,” he said. 

Gareth Bale

Gareth Bale is just 90 minutes away from helping Real Madrid make Champions League history. He talks to Jack Pitt-Brooke about the final against rivals Atletico, and his time in Spain so far.