Laurent Blanc

Didier Deschamps set to become new France manager

Didier Deschamps is set to be France's new coach, a source on the board of the French football federation said yesterday. "There are two or three details yet to be ironed out but there is no issue, Deschamps will be the next France coach," the source said.

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English industry gains its reward through Lescott

It was a performance for a time of austerity, devoid of the kind of ambition that will always be hoped for from those of a nation whose psyche, where the national team is concerned, will always be skewed by the act of having given football to the rest of the world. By the end, the English whistles that issued around the stadium, urging the referee to blow his own, acknowledged the truth that this was a game of artists versus artisans. And yet for all that, this is a result to be deeply grateful for.

James Lawton: Hard graft is key if England are to bloom in the City of

Though it hangs on to the grit-smeared old title of city of a million roses, a bit like the Rhondda Valley claiming to be Tuscany West, this is a place which like few others on earth has always insisted on the hardest work – whether you were part of a slave labour force or just someone battling to survive in the mines or the steel plant.