Republik Of Mancunia Archives for January 2014

United making a move for Carvalho?

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The Portuguese press are reporting this evening that Manchester United have stepped up their chase for Sporting Lisbon's William Carvalho.

Carvalho has apparently been named as a priority signing for Louis van Gaal and representatives from the club travelled to Lisbon to discuss the transfer today.

Netherlands v Mexico Preview: United’s strikers still hungry for success

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United's two strikers left in the World Cup Robin van Persie and Javier Hernandez face off on Sunday evening as Netherlands take on Mexico in the Round of 16.

The two strikers have a strange parallel to their international and club stature where Robin van Persie is a guaranteed starter and one of the most respected players for his club and country, Hernandez doesn't seem to get the respect his ability deserves a forgotten sub for United and restricted to substitute appearances in the World Cup.

Herrera welcomed to United by his new team-mates… and Rio

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Welcome my friend @ManUtd: Ander Herrera is a Red! #mufc pic.twitter.com/VFcFeerf6q

- David De Gea (@D_DeGea) June 26, 2014

@anderherrera8 welcome to @ManUtd mate

- Wayne Rooney (@WayneRooney) June 27, 2014

Welcome @anderherrera8 and @LukeShaw3 .

Shaw: I’ve signed for the biggest club in the world

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Having been linked with the club for months, Luke Shaw's move to Manchester United was finally confirmed today, with the player revealing his happiness in signing for the biggest club in the world.

"It's a great feeling," said Shaw. "It's been going quite a long time and I've known for a number of weeks that United were interested in me.

Herrera – A major part of Van Gaal’s rebuilding process

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It's fair to say that Guillermo Varela, David Moyes' first signing, hasn't made a great impact at Old Trafford. But you can expect much more from Ander Herrera. As his £29 million fee suggests, the Basque midfielder will be major part of the rebuilding process under Louis van Gaal.

Herrera starred as a dynamic number 10 for Athletic Bilbao last season, dictating the flow of games as they secured Champions League qualification.

Liverpool bringing joy to season of failure

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Around the start of April, it all seemed to be incredibly bleak. Manchester United were persevering with David Moyes. Moyes was a disaster, and it didn't seem that he was learning. If anything, it seemed like a substandard manager had made things so bad that he'd never get out of the deepening hole.

RoM Reads

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Synergy Sponsorship goes inside Nike ‘Casa Fenomenal' in Rio.

Scott writes for Bleacher Report about Danny Welbeck's most memorable moments for England.

The Guardian reports on Luke Shaw's medical at United.

ESPN reckons Herrera is the right man for United.

Sky Sports reports that Garay has signed for Zenit.

Hererra – Don’t be fooled by the baby face

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Don't be fooled by the baby face – in Ander Herrera Manchester United
have signed a leader on the pitch and a mature man off it. As
comfortable as marauding into the opposition's box as sitting back and
organising the play, he is the versatile midfielder the team have been
crying out for ever since Owen Hargreaves' knees gave way.

Herrera: Signing for United is a dream come true

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Having finally completed his transfer to Manchester United, Ander Herrera has spoken of his delight at getting to wear our shirt.

Signing for Manchester United is a dream come true,' said Herrera. 'I have played at Old Trafford for Athletic Club in the Europa League and it was one of the highlights of my career so far.

Bwin Blogger’s League: Germany wins the war & Belgium complete hat trick

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Following a successful last outing let's try to keep the momentum going with a few more winners and keep posting your tips in the comments because we need all the help we can get.

Today Germany take on USA, we've seen both the good and bad of Germany as they terrorised Portugal but struggled against Ghana, whilst USA were unfortunate not to be two points clear at the top following Varela's late equaliser against them.

Bid rejected for Ander Herrera

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Following reports all week that Ander Herrera was set to sign for United, after reportedly visiting Carrington yesterday, Athletic Bilbao have released a statement claiming they have rejected a bid for the player.

They claim that United have offered £28.85m (€36m) for the midfielder but that price does not meet their estimation.

TRANSFER RUMOURS: Vidal and Schweinsteiger

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Arturo Vidal 27 Years Old

When discussing the best central midfielder in the world the debate typically revolves around two players, Yaya Toure and Arturo Vidal. The Chilean is a destructive and creative force, combative in the heart of midfield, Vidal's performances for Juventus in the last few seasons have been outstanding and has been their standout player in the period along with fellow midfielder Andrea Pirlo.

VIDEO: Straight red card for Valencia against France

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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil. There is also exclusive content from this country's top football journalists, such as Sid Lowe, Martin Lipton, Sam Wallace and Dominic Fifield.

From the terraces to the boardroom

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Over the last twenty years the notion of what it means to be a football fan has undergone a radical transformation in this country. For most of the game's history fans were customers, happy to limit their involvement at the club to paying at the gate. The board were free to run things as they saw fit, without oversight.

VIDEO: Liverpool striker bites someone again

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Everyone's favourite racist, Luis Suarez, has bitten an opposition player for the third time in his career. Suarez ran at Italy's Giorgio Chiellini and bit in to his shoulder. Just like with Chelsea's Branislav Ivanovic before him, Chiellini hadn't provoked Suarez in any way. He was given a ten match ban for that bite and a seven match ban for biting Otman Bakkal's shoulder whilst at Ajax.

EXCLUSIVE Rio Ferdinand interview – I hope Holland win World Cup for Robin’s sake

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Rio took time out of his busy schedule helping to promote EA SPORTS UFC to talk to us at RoM.

As some of you may know, Rio is a huge fan of the UFC and he recently took part in a training camp with the UFC's Brad Pickett who taught him what it really means to Feel The Fight!

In part four of RoM's exclusive interview with Rio Ferdinand, our former defender talks to Noorudean Choudry about the World Cup.

EXCLUSIVE Rio Ferdinand interview – Disappointed to miss out on LvG doing things differently at United

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Rio took time out of his busy schedule helping to promote EA SPORTS UFCto talk to us at RoM.

As some of you may know, Rio is a huge fan of the UFC andhe recently took part in a training camp with the UFC's Brad Pickett whotaught him what it really means to Feel The Fight!

In part three of RoM's exclusive interview with Rio Ferdinand, our former defender talks to Noorudean Choudry about life after United.

EXCLUSIVE Rio Ferdinand interview – What happened with Kenyon and Chelsea

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In part two of RoM's exclusive interview with Rio Ferdinand, who was speaking to promote the launch of EA SPORTS UFC, our former defender talks to Noorudean Choudry about life at United.

Ferdinand's popularity amongst the fans took a hit when negotiations over a contract were fairly drawn out in 2005, following his eight month ban.

EXCLUSIVE Rio Ferdinand interview – Leaving Leeds for us and wanting to stay forever

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Rio took time out of his busy schedule helping to promote EA SPORTS UFCto talk to us at RoM.

As some of you may know, Rio is a huge fan of the UFC andhe recently took part in a training camp with the UFC's Brad Pickett whotaught him what it really means to Feel The Fight!

Rio spent 12 years at United and won a ridiculous number of trophies, including six league titles and the European Cup.

Van Gaal’s Golden Willy

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During Holland's 2-0 win over Chile, confirming their place at the top of the group, Louis van Gaal made two substitutions. Fer was brought on the pitch at 75 minutes, then scored on 77 minutes. Memphis was also a second half sub and he scored Holland's second goal.

Arjen Robben was asked about how Van Gaal managed to get his substitutions just right.

RoM Reads

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Scott wrote for Bleacher Report about Wayne Rooney's most memorable international moments.

The Guardian reports on Louis van Gaal's claims that FIFA are giving Brazil preferential treatment.

The Independent discusses Wilf Zaha returning to Crystal Palace.

United Rant has stats on our defence compared to other teams in the league.

Bwin Blogger’s League: Hosts and Holders

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With the start of the final round of group games, most teams are still in the hunt for a spot in the knockout rounds, whilst others who have had the misfortune of being eliminated now have nothing to fear when they take to the field next.

Today's fixtures feature the hosts Brazil taking on Cameroon who have arguably been the most disappointing team in the whole tournament.

LIVE BLOG: Belgium v Russia

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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil. There is also exclusive content from this country's top football journalists, such as Sid Lowe, Martin Lipton, Sam Wallace and Dominic Fifield.

RvP: You can’t blame Rooney

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England have been knocked out of the World Cup after just two games, their earliest exit from the competition ever.

Following Steve Gerrard assisting Luis Suarez towards the end of England's 2-1 defeat against Uruguay (he's done it again, he's done it agaaaaain), they were left to rely on Costa Rica to lose to Italy.

Rooney: I’m absolutely devastated

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Wayne Rooney scored his first ever World Cup goal this week but it wasn't enough to save England from their earliest ever exit from the competition.

As you would imagine, Rooney is gutted to be coming home so early, so wrote on Facebook: "Absolutely devastated to be out of the World Cup. Going into each game we had great belief in ourselves but unfortunately it hasn't worked out.

LIVE BLOG: France v Switzerland

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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil. There is also exclusive content from this country's top football journalists, such as Sid Lowe, Martin Lipton, Sam Wallace and Dominic Fifield.

RoM Reads

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After scoring against Algeria, Scott wrote for Bleacher Report about Fellaini's most memorable international moments.

Scott writes for The Metro about Javier Hernandez's lack of football this summer.

The Telegraph says Rooney is still England's best player.

The Guardian rates the players in England's defeat yesterday.

LIVE BLOG: Japan v Greece

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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil. There is also exclusive content from this country's top football journalists, such as Sid Lowe, Martin Lipton, Sam Wallace and Dominic Fifield.

Bwin Blogger’s League: England vs Uruguay

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After the first round of betting, RoM sits in a respectable 4th position in the league but we need your help to climb higher up the table, unlike Arsene Wenger we don't consider 4th a trophy. So let us know your best bets for the coming days.

England's opener against Italy brought around a lot of positives going forward, raised questions about the defence and doubts emerged with regards to the midfield.

VIDEO: Domestic violence raises by 25% after England games

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Studies conducted by the National Centre for Domestic Violence, ACPO and the BBC revealed that during the 2010 World Cup cases of domestic violence rose by an average 25% after an England match, win or lose.

Raise awareness and help #beatDV.




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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview.

LIVE BLOG: Australia vs Netherlands

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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil. There is also exclusive content from this country's top football journalists, such as Sid Lowe, Martin Lipton, Sam Wallace and Dominic Fifield.

RoM Reads

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Scott writes for The Metro about Marouane Fellaini's goal against Algeria.

The Guardian reports on Wayne Rooney's response to the criticism he's been getting.

The Telegraph reckons Wenger needs to block Vermaelen's proposed move to United.

Giggs t-shirt still up for grabs from Art of Football.

FIXTURES: Easy start for Van Gaal

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August
16 Swansea City H
23 Sunderland A
30 Burnley A

September
13 Queens Park Rangers H
20 Leicester City A
27 West Ham United H

October
4 Everton H
18 West Bromwich Albion A
25 Chelsea H

November
1 Manchester City A
8 Crystal Palace H
22 Arsenal A
29 Hull City H

December
2 Stoke City H
6 Southampton A
13 Liverpool H
20 Aston Villa A
26 Newcastle H
28 Tottenham Hotspur A

January
1 Stoke City A
10 Southampton H
17 Queens Park Rangers A
31 Leicester City H

February
7 West Ham A
10 Burnley H
21 Swansea City A
28 Sunderland H

March
4 Newcastle A
14 Tottenham Hotspur H
21 Liverpool A

April
4 Aston Villa H
11 Manchester City H
18 Chelsea A
25 Everton A

May
2 West Bromwich Albion H
9 Crystal Palace A
16 Arsenal H
24 Hull City A




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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview.

RoM Reads

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Scott has written for Bleacher Report about Nani's most memorable moments for Portugal.

Project Babb is The Telegraph's World Cup related blog.

Giggs t-shirt still up for grabs from Art of Football. Check out their World Cup range.

The Guardian has a poll on how England should use Rooney.

STATS: If only Rooney fulfilled his potential…

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It should come as no surprise that Wayne Rooney was on the receiving end of plenty of stick from England fans following Saturday night's defeat against Italy.

Rooney didn't have a good game, being shifted around in a variety of different positions, and struggled to provide Leighton Baines with much cover when on the left.

Jonny Evans – The Frank de Boer of Belfast

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It's been a quietly remarkable couple of years for Jonny Evans.

Following the departures of Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic, he is now the most senior and dependable central defender at Manchester United; quite the turnaround for a player who was all but written off by those too impatient or pessimistic to give youth a chance two seasons ago.

LIVE BLOG: France vs Honduras

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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil. There is also exclusive content from this country's top football journalists, such as Sid Lowe, Martin Lipton, Sam Wallace and Dominic Fifield.

Live Blog: England v Italy

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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil. There is also exclusive content from this country's top football journalists, such as Sid Lowe, Martin Lipton, Sam Wallace and Dominic Fifield.

Van Gaal and Van Persie Batter World and European Champions

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Holland thrashed Spain 5-1 in their opening World Cup game this evening, with our Robin van Persie scoring two of the goals.

Spain won the European Championship in 2012, the World Cup in 2010, and the Euros in 2008. They were on for their fourth major tournament trophy win in a row but their hopes will be massively dented following this evening's game.

VIDEO: Van Persie scores against Spain and high-fives Van Gaal

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Robin van Persie scored the equalising goal for Holland against Spain tonight and then celebrated with his new Manchester United manager, Louis van Gaal.




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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil.

Bwin Blogger’s League: United strikers, England vs Italy

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In a slow start to the Bwin Blogger's League, RoM's first bet didn't really go to plan as Fred failed to get on the scoresheet. We all know however this is a marathon not a sprint, so the minor setback won't be costly.

Friday and Saturday represent a busy day for Manchester United strikers with the four senior members all taking part.

Top Journo Amazed By The Bile Rooney Attracts

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Speaking to RoM for the World Cup preview, Sam Wallace, the chief football writer at The Independent, has discussed at length the importance of Wayne Rooney to England.

It never ceases to amaze how much bile he attracts. You might say Rooney's curse was to be born English at the wrong time.

Top Journos Explain Why Hodgson Is So Keen On Smalling

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Speaking with RoM for the World Cup preview, Martin Lipton and Dom Fifield have discussed the inclusion of Phil Jones and Chris Smalling in the England squad.

Martin Lipton, chief football writer for The Mirror

They are favourites of Roy Hodgson; and what might be hard for many United fans to get their heads around is that Hodgson regards these two from a very different perspective.

Top Jounos Rate Mata’s Chances Of Making A Difference For Spain

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Sid Lowe, who writes a weekly article for The Guardian on Spanish football, and Graham Hunter, who has written books on Spain's Euro and World Cup success, as well as one on Barcelona which won the Football Book of the Year at The British Sports Book Awards in 2013, have spoken exclusively to RoM for the World Cup preview about Juan Mata and Spain.

TOP FIVE: Manchester United Players’ World Cup Moments

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As with any good list, some ground rules are needed. The first is that the player in question had to be playing at United at the time at which their World Cup moment happened – sorry Fabien, you don't make the cut, though I suspect the fact that you won the thing probably eases the pain.

The second is that it has to be a moment of glory, so no David Beckham getting sent off in 1998, albeit that is an iconic moment.

Rooney: Welbeck is fine

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Danny Welbeck sat out of England training today, leading to speculation that he was injured. However, Wayne Rooney has played down any fears this evening and said that Welbeck will be available for England's opening game against Italy on Saturday.

"Danny will be fine. I'm sure he will be ready for Saturday.

Nani: Sporting Connection Set To See Nani Thrive At The World Cup

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Portugal go into their eighth successive major tournament at the upcoming World Cup. Reaching three semi-finals (Euro 2000, WC 2006 and Euro 2012) and one final (Euro 2004) in the last decade and a half is a remarkable achievement for a country that is among the nani poorest and smallest in Western Europe.

RoM Reads

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Scott writes for Bleacher Report about Valencia's most memorable moments for Ecuador.

Scott writes for The Metro about David Moyes' delusion.

The Guardian reckons Van Gaal wants Alexis Sanchez.

The Mirror reports the end of United's interest in Thomas Muller.

Best Preparation for the World Cup for United fans




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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview.

RoM qualifies for Bwin World Cup Blogger’s League

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While Roy and the boys are struggling in South America, we at RoM have got our own World Cup battle on our hands.

We're one of nine sites taking part in the inaugural bwin World Cup Blogger's League, a unique, betting-orientated competition curated bybwin.com. With £100 to spend per site on the World Cup, it's down to each site to prove that they can predict World Cup results better than their rivals – with the winner being the site that has made the most money betting on the World Cup at the end of the tournament.

VIDEO: Welbz dancing in Rio

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England visit the Rocinha Sports Complex and Danny Welbeck has a go at capoeira, which is a Brazilian dancing/fighting style.




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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil.

VIDEO: Super Fergie

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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil. There is also exclusive content from this country's top football journalists, such as Sid Lowe, Martin Lipton, Sam Wallace and Dominic Fifield.

COMPETITION: Ryan Giggs t-shirt

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Art of Football are giving away a Ryan Giggs t-shirt to one lucky RoM reader. All you have to do is send your full name, address and shirt size, along with a YouTube link of your favourite Giggs moment to: republik_of_mancunia_competition@hotmail.co.uk

Their online shop also has designs for international football legends as well as England themed t-shirts, ahead of the World Cup.

PICTURE: Maradona is a red

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Diego Maradona has become an official member of the Kuwaiti Manchester United Supporters Club.

Maradona met up with our squad in Dubai in February this year and came to Carrington a few years earlier.




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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview.

TRANSFER RUMOURS: Pedro and Griezmann to Manchester United?

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Pedro 26 Years Old

Another product of Barcelona's youth system, Pedro's first two full seasons with the senior team saw him score fourty-five goals from his usual wide position. A player with extreme speed, Pedro is often used as a left winger but can play on either flank, often cutting inside from either side as he is comfortable with the ball on either foot which enables him to attack full backs and the goal at every opportunity.

RoM Reads

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Scott writes for Bleacher Report about controversial international moments for our players.

The Guardian reports United have been told they have to pay £60m to bring Pogba back.

Pride of all Europe looks at why Van Gaal will be a success.

The Telegraph reckons that Rooney should start for England.

Rio: I took Carrick to the pub after England squad news

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Michael Carrick, like most players at the club, had a pretty awful season for United in 2013-2014. Rio Ferdinand has today claimed that it was a mistake for Roy Hodgson to leave Carrick out of the squad for Brazil though, despite such a poor year.

"As someone involved in that extraordinary campaign, it's safe to say it was a rollercoaster ride, and draining emotionally," Rio said.

VIDEO: Kagawa goal vs Zambia

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Shinji Kagawa scored the equalising goal for Japan after they had gone 2-0 down against Gambia. They went on to win the game 4-3, after a 90th minute winner.




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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil.

VIDEO: Kagawa goal vs Gambia

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Shinji Kagawa scored the equalising goal for Japan after they had gone 2-0 down against Gambia. They went on to win the game 4-2.




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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil.

Five Manchester United stars gunning for glory in Brazil 2014

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The 2014 World Cup is almost upon us, and while the sight of the likes of Spain, Brazil and Germany battling it out for the greatest prize in football will be quite enough intrigue for most, there will be a fewfans keeping one eye on their own beloved club's representatives in South America.

Manchester United, for one, have seen14 players fly off to Brazil this summer, all gunning for that precious little gold trophy.

VIDEO: Funny Scholesy Q&A

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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil. There is also exclusive content from this country's top football journalists, such as Sid Lowe, Martin Lipton, Sam Wallace and Dominic Fifield.

Giggs: I cried over thoughts of leaving United

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Ryan Giggs has revealed at after the final game of the season, he cried when he realised that it was the last time he could be seeing the players and staff at United as a fellow employee.

Having taking on the role of interim manager and not signed a new deal as a player, Giggs had to face the possibility that Louis van Gaal wouldn't ask him to stay at the club and he would be saying goodbye, after over two decades at United.

Why didn’t Rafael get Brazil call-up?

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Despite failing to prevent Palmeiras from getting relegated to Brazil's second division in 2012, when he was the team's manager, Scolari was hired as Brazil's manager last year and has succeeded in improving the team and in reaching a level of tactical consistency that Mano Menezes failed to achieve.

RvP Won’t Miss World Cup

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Following an injury-plagued season, there were fears that Robin van Persie might miss the World Cup after being taken off at half-time in Holland's 2-0 win over Wales.

Van Persie has revealed to reporters in Holland that they should have nothing to worry about.

"I wouldn't call it an injury," he said.

Rooney: I’m not bothered by critics

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Wayne Rooney was played out of position on the left for England's 2-2 draw with Ecuador yesterday, but still managed to score a goal.

Several people in the media have claimed that Rooney shouldn't be guaranteed a starting place but the player insists he isn't bothered what people have to say.

Valencia: I’m apologised to team mates for red card

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During Ecuador's 2-2 draw with England last night, Antonio Valencia was the victim of an awful late challenge by Liverpool's Raheem Sterling, but fortunately for him, his standing leg wasn't planted. If he hadn't managed to jump out of the way, he could have been nursing the second bone break of his career.

VIDEO: Valencia strangles Sterling

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In England's 2-2 draw with Ecuador this evening, Antonio Valencia was sent off for strangling Raheem Sterling after a horrible challenge from the Liverpool player.

Well worth the card.

Gwan Tony lad!




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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable review for the 2013-2014 season.

RoM Reads

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Scott writes for Bleacher Report about Shinji Kagawa's best moments for Japan.

The Evening News reports on how Januzaj's debut for Belgium was invalid.

Beautifully Red has the best moments of the season in GIF form.

The Guardian says we will sign Strootman in January.

The Mirror claims we will bid for Schweinsteiger.

Valencia – “The Amazonian Express”

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On the world stage, Antonio Valencia is unarguably the most famous Ecuadorian footballer of all time. He is the only man from his country to have played in a Champions League final and the only one to have won a pair of league titles in one of Europe's biggest leagues. His achievements are a great source of pride for his countrymen and it is Valencia who will lead Ecuador into this summer's World Cup as national team captain.

The RoM 2014 World Cup preview

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Following the huge success of the RoM 2013-2014 season review, raising over £1500 for charity, another downloadable PDF is on offer for Manchester United fans.

With a minimum payment of £4 required, you will be presented with close to 30 pages of United related content, focussing on our players who will be featuring in the World Cup this summer.

RoM Reads

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Scott writes for Bleacher Report about Javier Hernandez's best moments for Mexico.

The Evening News reports on Tom Lawrence hoping to make his international debut against Louis van Gaal's Holland.

United Rant discusses selling Rooney.

The Independent reports on Lineker's games that Rooney isn't entitled to a starting place for England.

VIDEO: Kagawa goal vs Costa Rica

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The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable review for the 2013-2014 season. It contains an exclusive interview with Gary Neville, reaction from the best the journalists in the country, articles by the best United supporting football writers, and much more.

Van Gaal: I was very close to being Spurs manager instead

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Louis van Gaal was linked with a move to Tottenham Hotspur for several months before United confirmed that he would be replacing the sacked David Moyes. Van Gaal has confirmed that the reports were not just rumours though, with a deal very close to being agreed.

"It was very close. Very close," he said.

Chicharito: I was so proud to sign for United

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Javier Hernandez, who is regularly linked with a move away from the club, has reflected on how special it was to sign for Manchester United in 2010.

"It was more than emotion when I found out Manchester United wanted to sign me," he told the official site. "What football means in my country, to make that jump from a team from Mexico to one of the biggest clubs in the world just doesn't happen in Mexico.