Hooper sets Celtic targets
Leicester manager Nigel Pearson has insisted defender Wes Morgan
is not for sale.
The 29-year-old centre-back has been linked with a return to
former club Nottingham Forest, but Pearson says he is going
But he told BBC Radio Leicester: “Wes is not a player I have any
intention of selling, so it doesn’t matter whether there has been a
bid or not.
“There may have been, but it doesn’t matter; it will have been
Morgan spent 10 years with Forest before joining Leicester last
Wright was in his native Belfast on Thursday night to watch
Rosenborg come from behind to beat Cruasders 2-1 in the first leg
of the first qualifying round.
Jordan Owens gave the hosts a shock lead and they put the
Norwegian side under pressure throughout.
Wright, who will watch Rosenborg take on Lillestrom on Sunday,
told his club’s official website: “Crusaders played very well and
were unlucky not to get a draw.
“That said, Rosenborg rested five players who I feel would
probably be termed as normally being in their starting eleven and I
think I will get a better feel for them when I see them again on
“Rosenborg are a strong, powerful team and a different
proposition from Eskisehirspor last season.
“I actually think the Turks were better technically but there is
no doubting Rosenborg’s quality.
“However, I’ve come away with the feeling that we can go into
the tie with confidence.”
Rooney’s future has been the focus of much speculation this
summer and has cast a huge shadow over the early stages of Moyes’
tenure as he replaces Sir Alex Ferguson.
Chelsea, Arsenal and Paris Saint Germain have all been touted as
suitors for the England striker but Moyes has stated that the
England striker will stay at Old Trafford.
“Wayne is not for sale,” he said. “He’s a Manchester United
player and he will remain a Manchester United player.”
Moyes also managed the 28-year-old during his time at Everton
and believes he can get the best out of the England striker.
“I’ve been fortunate, I’ve known Wayne since he was 16,” Moyes
“I’ve had several meetings with Wayne. He’s training brilliantly
well, he’s come back in good shape and I’m really looking forward
to working with him.
“We have spoken several times and as far as I’ve seen it,
whatever happened before has gone.
“We are working together now. I see a glint in his eye, he looks
happy and if he is saying I’m going to knuckle down and get it
right – let’s not kid ourselves.
“He’s a terrific player and let me reiterate, he’s not for
Moyes also distanced himself from any meeting between Rooney and
his predecessor Sir Alex Ferguson about a possible departure for
the forward from Old Trafford.
“There was a private meeting between two people and I was not
privy to that. I’m now looking at it in my period at Man Utd,”
“I’m really looking forward to working with Wayne and getting
him to the levels I know he’s capable of. I can tell you
categorically that Wayne Rooney is training very well.
“If I was Wayne, you look at the legends that have played for
this club. I could see George Best, Bobby Charlton, Roy Keane and I
thought Wayne isn’t too far away from that.
“It’s not too difficult to get the goals and he could be near to
Moyes also revealed that he was personally anointed by Ferguson
during a meeting at the 71-year-old’s house.
Ferguson’s retirement in May was unexpected and Moyes was called
to his fellow Scot’s home to be told the news.
“It was a really strange situation for me,” he added. “I had no
“A lot of people thought I’d known something about the job. I
knew nothing at all about it until Sir Alex gave me a call and
asked me to come to his house.
“I was expecting him to say, ‘I’m gonna take one of your players
or I’m gonna do something else’, I wasn’t sure what he we was gonna
say to me.
“And we went in and the first thing he said to me, he says: ‘I’m
“And I said ‘yeah, when?’ you know, because he was never
retiring, was he?
“And he says ‘next week’, and his next words were ‘and you’re
the next Manchester United manager’.
“So I didn’t get a chance to say yes or no, I was told I was the
next Manchester United manager by Sir Alex, so for me that was
“As you can imagine the blood drained from my face – I was
really shocked. More shocked that Sir Alex had chosen to retire,
but inside I was incredibly thrilled that I was going to be given
the opportunity to manage Manchester United.”
Moyes is, however, happy for Ferguson to give his advice in the
early stages of his role new role as United manager.
“I hope he is sitting in the directors’ box,” Moyes said.
“He has been so good. I’ve already called him two or three times
for advice on matters. I’m taking over the champions of England and
it gives me a great opportunity.
“He’s not there to pressure me. The Glazers have been fantastic
since I spoke to them and Ed Woodward the chief exec and the
players have been very good and responded well.
“It’s never easy going into a new job let alone one the size of
With Ryan Giggs and former Manchester United defender Phil
Neville already on board in Moyes’ coaching set-up, he also hinted
Paul Scholes could make a return to Old Trafford in a similar
capacity after he retired at the end of last season.
“I’ve got to say when I spoke to him he was absolutely fantastic
and he gave me some guidance on things,” Moyes said on Scholes.
“We probably spent and hour or two on the phone. He wants to
give his family some time but there will be a place for him and
we’ll look to bring him back in when he feels ready.”
The arrival of Moyes at Old Trafford is not the only managerial
appointment in the Premier League this summer, and the new
Manchester United boss is looking forward to locking horns with one
man in particular.
“I’m really pleased to see Jose (Mourinho) back,” Moyes
“He’s been very successful and I think we’ll enjoy having Jose
back in the Premier League again. Manuel Pellegrini – I’ve come
across him a couple of times with Villarreal and Malaga so it will
be new for him as well (at Manchester City).
“Probably for the first time there has been a good shake up in
the Premier League and because of that there are a lot of things
that are unknown. I don’t just think it at this club, there are a
few other clubs that are very similar.”
The shake up will be felt more keenly at Old Trafford than
elsewhere however, as Moyes replaces a man who won two European
Cups, 13 Premier League titles and five FA Cups during his 27 years
at the helm.
And while Moyes is hopeful he can put his own stamp on United,
he knows that the fans at least, will expect him to maintain many
of the aspects of the Ferguson era.
When asked how his side would play, Moyes said: “I hope the same
way, I hope the same traditions, I hope entertaining, exciting
“But I’ve always said, the biggest thing in football is to
“I would always probably put winning at the top of the list, I
don’t think I’ve ever changed from that and I’m sure that Sir Alex
would as well.
“I think if you had a great entertaining team but you didn’t win
the games it doesn’t quite get you anywhere, so I think you’ve got
to get the balance right and hopefully I can.”
He added: “Any football coach who wants to coach or manage, when
you look outside any window you see Old Trafford, you have to
because it’s a place you want to go.
“I always hoped that when Sir Alex’s days would come that I
would be a consideration.
“Whoever was going to take over this club knows the job would be
taking over from the manager before who was incredible. Someone who
everybody in football looks up to. Worldwide known.
“His achievements, there are probably no better.
“He tops my list of many Scottish managers: Sir Matt (Busby),
Bill Shankley, Jock Stein and certainly Sir Alex is right up with
that group of managers.
“All I can do is do what David Moyes has done before. I’ll
definitely continue the traditions of Manchester United.
“But I have to, in my own way, put my own stamp on the club.
“Sir Alex had to so it when he took over and it took him a
little bit of time.
“I’m very fortunate I’m taking over the champions of England. So
from that point of view it gives me a great starting point, better
than most would ever get.”
Summer arrivals Cammy Bell, Steven Smith, Richard Foster, Nicky
Clark, Jon Daly and Nicky Law are among a 23-man pool for
friendlies against Brora Rangers on Sunday and Elgin on
French-Tunisian defender Bilel Mohsni, who left Southend at the
end of last season, will also join the party as he bids to win a
McCoist, who will take his squad to Germany after a friendly at
Bristol City on July 13, told his club’s official website: “We are
lucky in that we have the best facility in the country in the form
of Murray Park. It’s fantastic and we are blessed to have it.
“At the same time, it can be extremely beneficial to get the
players away from their own environment where they are all
“They will get a chance to get to know each other away from the
football park as well when we’re in Brora and that’s a big
“We’ve got a few new faces in the group who have still to get to
know each other and their new team-mates.”
Another of McCoist’s seven summer signings, Honduras midfielder
Arnold Peralta, has still to arrive in Scotland following his
Dean Shiels, Chris Hegarty and Barrie McKay will stay behind at
Murray Park to continue their rehabilitation from injury.
The group was competing with one other anonymous party for
control of the club and stadium.
Pars United revealed the news on its official Twitter
The group wrote: “We are delighted to announce we have been
named preferred bidder by the administrators. Still a lot of work
A statement from club administrators BDO is expected later.
Hooper has been the subject of intense media speculation
regarding his future since the turn of the year.
The former Southend and Scunthorpe favourite has yet to commit
his future to the Scottish champions, who have offered him a new
Norwich failed with a bid in excess of Â£7million in
January, while Hull City had a smaller offer dismissed last
Now Hooper insists his focus is improving on last season’s
success with Celtic, which included a Champions League victory over
“I want to beat my tally from last season, that’s the aim
because I’ve done it every season,” he said.
“I also have to get 20 or more league goals because I didn’t get
it just there, I only got 19.
“I want to play in the Champions League again, get into the
group stages and get that feeling again.
“I know I wasn’t playing in the game against Barcelona but it
was still amazing.
“We also want to retain the title as obviously the league is
still our priority.”