Owen Hargreaves

Hargreaves and Woodgate released by clubs

Manchester United's Owen Hargreaves, Tottenham's Jonathan Woodgate and West Ham defender Matthew Upson are some of the bigger names to be released by their clubs this summer.

Thornton falls in step on road to recovery

Given that their first baby is due three days before Christmas, Robert Thornton's wife could be pardoned for taking a suspicious view of his determination to get out of the house. To anyone else, however, the very possibility that he could already be back at work is a matter for undiluted celebration. Told that he might be out for 12 months after a fall at Newton Abbot in July, Thornton is so far ahead of schedule he could even treat a schooling spill yesterday as another significant breakthrough.

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Capello must move fast to cap German-born wunderkind

Fabio Capello has the opportunity to claim the Germany under-21 captain Lewis Holtby as a senior England international if he caps him before the German-born midfielder, who has an English father, plays for Germany's senior team.