The Sports Matrix: Tuesday 1 Febuary 2011

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Southgate hopes to take executive role

Gareth Southgate was yesterday appointed the Football Association’s head of elite development and said he hoped to take a senior executive role in English football. He will work as a liaison between the FA and clubs with players representing England. MORE

Broad to return before World Cup

Stuart Broad hopes to return ahead of schedule from the injury he suffered during the Ashes: “At this moment I'd like to think there is no problem there at all, but I won't know until I’ve bowled off my full run, which I’m hoping to do by next Sunday.” MORE

Djokovic wants to be world No 1

Novak Djokovic has announced his next ambition after winning the Australian Open last Sunday: “My goal is to be No 1 in the world and I’m doing everything in order to achieve that. I will have to win more Grand Slams.” MORE

Moyes criticises Spurs’ Neville bid

Everton manager has described Harry Redknapp’s £250,000 offer for Phil Neville as “insulting”. The bid was increased to £1.5m last night, and again rejected by the club. Moyes described it as “a disrespectful offer to the club” and to Neville as a player. MORE

Ashton ready for Williams test

England winger Chris Ashton says he will give his opposite number Shane Williams “ultimate respect” in Friday night’s Six Nations opener against Wales in Cardiff but is “very conscious of the need to be better than him on this occasion”. MORE

Birmingham sign Martins on loan

Birmingham City have signed Nigerian striker Obafemi Martins on loan until the rest of the season. Martins, who spent three years at Newcastle United, had been at Rubin Kazan and was described by Alex McLeish as “explosive”.

Tindall and Fourie back for England

Mike Tindall, Hendre Fourie and Simon Shaw were all back in training for England yesterday ahead of Friday’s match with Wales and will be fit for selection. Coach Martin Johnson said he expected a “storm” at the Millennium Stadium for the game. MORE

Gudjohnsen boosts Fulham forwards

Eidur Gudjohnsen joined Fulham on loan from Stoke City last night. The 32-year-old, who won two Premier League titles with Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea before a spell at Barcelona, struggled for fitness at Stoke since his free transfer move last summer.

Houllier wants ‘massive’ victory

Aston Villa manager Gérard Houllier hopes for a “massive” victory over Manchester United in tonight’s game at Old Trafford. He disputed claims the leaders are in poor form: “I wish we could play as badly as they’re supposed to have done,” he said. MORE

Opinion: James Lawton

It would confirm our best instincts about Carlo Ancelotti if he left Chelsea in the summer. Great managers build teams on their own terms, not with gifts like Roman Abramovich’s purchase of Fernando Torres. MORE

Liverpool roll dice with £35m deal for Newcastle’s Carroll

Liverpool were last night gambling on replacing Fernando Torres with Andy Carroll, for whom they agreed a £35m fee with Newcastle United. While Torres was heading to Chelsea after a British record £50m bid was accepted, Liverpool agreed another massive fee with Newcastle after having initial approaches for the 21-year-old England international rejected. Carroll stands to more than treble his £20,000 per week salary in a five-year deal at Anfield. The £50m fee for Torres would be paid over the course of a fiveyear deal at Stamford Bridge, and undermines Roman Abramovich’s claims to meet Uefa’s financial fair play criteria. Another Chelsea transfer, in excess of £21m for David Luiz, was still being negotiated last night. MORE

Sturridge joins Bolton on loan deal

Bolton Wanderers have signed Chelsea’s Daniel Sturridge on loan until the end of the season. The England U-21 forward will see chances limited at Chelsea by the arrival of Fernando Torres and was described by Owen Coyle as a “terrific young talent”.

Bendtner heralds ‘big, big month’

Nicklas Bendtner described February as Arsenal’s “decisive month”, starting with tonight’s hosting of Everton. Arsenal are still in three cup competitions, including the League Cup final and Bendtner says they “need to be up to the challenge”. MORE