Sport Villas-Boas has promised that Jermain Defoe will not be sold in January

Following the confirmation of his move to MLS side Toronto FC, Defoe brings to an end a somewhat unfulfilled partnership with Spurs that often saw him - rightly or wrongly - overlooked

Rooney faces fierce battle to win back his starting role

Fabio Capello has warned Wayne Rooney that there is no guarantee he will automatically come back into the England team after his ban at Euro 2012, and said the Manchester United striker will not start in friendlies in the build-up to the tournament.

Sam Wallace: The FA needs to find a new national manager – there's no need to make a secret of it

Things do get leaked but let's not cry about it. An appointment has to be made and the more po-faced the FA appears, the more it risks ridicule

Time to trust in the young tyros as golden generation gives way

The assembled team have "the right combination of youth and experience" we were told on Friday as the powers that be looked ahead to a brighter 2012 following demoralising defeat last summer. But Ed Miliband's new shadow cabinet has yet to be tested. The England football team, whose captain, John Terry, used almost exactly the same expression a few hours after the Labour leader, have already faced a battle or three and emerged with distinctly mixed results.

Philosophy of Sir Bobby still moulds game's great tacticians

Villas-Boas and Mourinho among many paying tribute to Robson at charity auction

The boy Jones rises to the occasion to show why he is England's coming man

The comparisons between Phil Jones and Duncan Edwards, which began in a casual conversation between Sir Bobby Charlton and Paddy Crerard a month or so back, are premature, of course, much though the 19-year-old's composure always makes him look like the rock in a raging sea which Edwards always was.

'Mistranslated' Tevez did not refuse to play, says adviser

"Carlos did not refuse to play, and what he did was no worse than Cesc Fabregas, Luka Modric and Samir Nasri refusing to play." That was the startling and contradictory defence of Carlos Tevez delivered by his adviser Kia Joorabchian yesterday, a defence that is unlikely to improve relations with Manchester City, given that it came in the middle of the club's internal investigation into the Argentine's apparent refusal to go on as a substitute against Bayern Munich last week.

'Mistranslated' Carlos Tevez did not refuse to play, insists adviser Joorabchian

Argentine's mentor accuses City manager Mancini of mishandling the situation

Alex Ferguson backs Wayne Rooney to become all-time record scorer

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has tipped Wayne Rooney to eclipse Sir Bobby Charlton as the club's all-time record scorer.

Alex Ferguson not surprised by Manchester City start

Sir Alex Ferguson expected Manchester City to make a flying start to the season.

Alex Ferguson hopeful over injuries ahead of Liverpool clash

Sir Alex Ferguson will be just as concerned by what goes on at Carrington during the current international break as he is by the matches being played around the world.

Benitez: I was right to call Everton a small club

On Merseyside derby day, an exclusive interview with the former Liverpool manager who is desperate to get back into management

Benitez: 'I will always love this city but I want another job'

Still fascinated by Liverpool, its football, its art and The Beatles, Rafa Benitez is also enjoying his new role as a writer about the game but longs for a return to a top-flight club in England. He talks to Ian Herbert

Anthony Rose: 'Sales of Spanish wine are on the up'

Spanish wine sales are up, we are told, thanks to Spain's new flamboyant image. Marks & Spencer recently reported a 200 per cent increase on last year and Spanish sales at Waitrose are 40 per cent up. Various reasons have been suggested, from sangria nostalgia to the tennis heroics of Rafa and the brilliance of Spain's peerless World Cup squad. What better example of Spanish excellence is there, after all? Well, Cruz, Bardem and Almodovar apart, food and wine of course. El Bulli's Ferran Adria and the UK's tapas bar and sherry revolution have done much to shine a new light on the huge strides made in vino español.

Ferguson backs manager's strong approach

Sir Alex Ferguson resisted the urge to gloat, or to remind the world that two years ago he had decided Carlos Tevez was not worth the price, or the trouble.

Van Persie raid on cards to fill Argentine's boots

Manchester City are ready to return to Arsenal – the club whose manager, Arsène Wenger, has been subjected to more approaches from the Abu Dhabi owners than any other – with Robin van Persie (right) a possible recruit next summer when the gap soon to be left by Carlos Tevez is eventually filled.

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