Football in brief: Striker Benjani to stay and fight for first-team place at Eastlands
Tuesday 08 December 2009
Out-of-favour striker Benjani insists he has no desire to leave Manchester City, despite being a long way down Mark Hughes's selection list.
The 31-year-old has made just one substitute appearance this season after the City manager signed a plethora of talented forwards this summer. But the striker, signed for £4m in January 2008, is staying put. "I am not going anywhere and I am going to put up a fight to ensure that I get my place back," he said.
Restricted opportunities have led to reports of interests from the likes of Gary Megson at Bolton Wanderers. Portsmouth, the club he left for Eastlands, have also previously voiced an interest in re-signing the Zimbabwe international. Yet he remains unfazed and willing to fight to get back into the first team. "I still have a contract with Manchester City," he said. By Faaez Samadi
Messi frontrunner for world player award
Lionel Messi is favourite to win this year's Fifa World Player of the Year award. Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka, Xavi and Andres Iniesta make up the shortlist, which was announced yesterday and was compiled after a poll of national teams' coaches and captains. The Argentine recently won the prestigious Ballon d'Or and, alongside Xavi and Iniesta, was instrumental in Barcelona's treble-winning season last year, which included the Champions League and La Liga titles. Kaka and Ronaldo joined Real Madrid last summer, the Portuguese winning the award last year.
Wilshere prepared to consider loan move
The promising Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere has revealed he would be happy to join a Premier League club on a short-term basis for the rest of the season if the opportunity arose. Wilshere has played just five times for the Gunners this season. "I have seen things about Middlesbrough, Celtic and Rangers being interested," the 17-year-old England Under-21 international said. "But a Premier League side would be better; I would have to think about it [a loan move]."
O'Driscoll keen to sign Gillett permanently
Loan signing Simon Gillett is currently in talks to turn his loan move at Doncaster Rovers into a permanent one. The Southampton midfielder has made seven appearances for Rovers this season and manager Sean O'Driscoll has been impressed. The 24-year-old's current loan deal, due to expire on 12 December, has been extended for another month. The Keep Moat stadium side's manager said: "We are in the process of offering Simon a contract."
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