PRE-GAME: Mason Mount’s agent change hints at Chelsea’s exit door, Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink will continue to work as a pundit despite his role in England, and Gary Lineker has yet to commit to the Champions League program from the BBC next season.
- Mason Mount’s contract talks with Chelsea have made little progress so far
- The midfielder has already appointed a new agent and is aiming for the door
- Gary Lineker has not committed to the BBC Champions League highlights show
Mason Mount has appointed a new agent, Wasserman Media Group’s Neil Fewings, to manage a possible transfer from Chelsea, the strongest indication yet that he is ready to leave Stamford Bridge at the end of the season.
The England midfielder has been deadlocked with Chelsea all season over the terms of a new contract and there appears to be little sign of a resolution as he prepares to enter the final 12 months of his contract, with the club insisting when they have made their final offer. .
Mount has been cared for by his father Tony for the past 18 months since leaving his previous management company, Stellar Football.
The couple have sought more specialist assistance in negotiating with other clubs.
Manchester United have joined Liverpool and Newcastle in the hunt for Mount, so the change in approach may already be paying off.
Mason Mount has appointed a new agent as his Chelsea contract negotiations remain stalled
The English midfielder is wanted this summer by Newcastle, Manchester United and Liverpool
FA’S ANNOYANCE ABOUT HASSELBAINK
Gareth Southgate’s wish to appoint Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink to his backroom staff has not gone down well with some of the St George’s Park staff.
The move is part of the FA’s commitment to provide more opportunities for BAME managers, but staff believe the scheme should be used to develop English coaches.
Leading figures involved in creating the FA and PFA-funded BAME Manager Placement Scheme have expressed doubts as the scheme was designed to provide a platform for young managers to return to the game.
The original 2018 intake was made up of Chris Powell, Sol Campbell, Kieron Dyer, Paul Nevin, Terry Connor and Alena Moulton, who all gained club jobs thanks to their work with England.
As a 50-year-old Dutchman who has already held five managerial roles, Hasselbaink has a different profile but is set to join Southgate’s staff for England’s European Championship qualifying campaign in place of Powell, whose contract expired after the World Cup.
Eyebrows have also been raised that Hasselbaink will continue to work as a pundit on Sky Sports, so he may be asked to criticize the players he is working with. The former striker may also have benefited from his relationship with Southgate, whom he played with at Middlesbrough.
Gareth Southgate’s desire to appoint Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink to his backroom staff has caused controversy in the FA, not least as he will continue in his role as pundit on Sky Sports.
THE COACH’S CHAOS DID IT FOR VIEIRA
The departure of Patrick Vieira as Crystal Palace boss was not helped by tension between some of his players and assistant manager Osian Roberts, who also left the club on Friday.
The former Wales assistant was brought to Selhurst Park by Vieira last summer and has not hit it off with everyone in the Palace team.
Vieira’s decision to fire another coach, Shaun Derry, last month also appears to have backfired. Palace have not won any of their seven matches since Derry left, and several players felt the loss of the ex-club captain’s passionate and combative approach.
LINEKER STALLIZING ON BBC
Gary Lineker has yet to commit to presenting the BBC’s Champions League coverage when its featured show starts next year.
Lineker is being sought by BT Sport to become the face of the rebranded TNT Sports next season, though the new company is laying off up to 200 staff and a formal offer is not imminent.
Gary Lineker has yet to commit to presenting next season’s BBC Champions League highlight show.
The BBC has the rights to Champions League highlights for the first time from 2024, and Lineker’s contract with the BBC runs until 2025.
The Match of the Day presenter returns to the screens on Saturday night after last weekend’s extraordinary boycott.
Discussions with the BBC about his future will take place at the end of the season.
PUT ON YOUR RAMSEY SHIRT
Arsenal’s golden streak continued at the London Football Awards this week, with chief executive Vinai Venkatesham winning the top prize in the raffle: an England shirt to be signed by the entire team for this month’s European Championship qualifiers.
Venkatesham returned the prize and asked for the raffle to be drawn again, with the shirt ultimately going to QPR technical director Chris Ramsey.