Report: Red Bull could purchase Premier League club. Liverpool? Everton?

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Rumors are circling about Red Bull being in the market for a Premier League club to add to their growing portfolio of sports teams.

With soccer teams the New York Red Bulls, Red Bull Leipzig, Red Bull Brasil, Red Bull Ghana and Red Bull Salzburg already under their belt and various other sporting entities, reports of further expansion could be true given the company’s aggressive business model in the past.

But, in all seriousness, this report is coming from the Mirror, hardly England’s most believable tabloid… if there is such a thing.

So, let’s get to the facts, apparently a source close to Red Bull believes the energy drink company is actively seeking out investment opportunities in the Premier League, and believes if they acquire or invest heavily in an English club, they’ll have more chance of success of reaching out to a wider audience across Europe and the rest of the world. This is what an apparent ‘insider’ on the deal had to say.

Red Bull want a team to take into the Champions League,”It is the only market they have not reached yet. Ideally this would be in the London area, but both Everton and Liverpool interest them too because it would not take much to get them to that level.

Many have suggested that buying a Championship team and investing heavily to gain promotion to England’s top flight is better, but that doesn’t seem to interest Red Bull. They want to go for a top team rather than wasting money and never clambering out of England’s second-tier, which, let’s face it, is almost a lottery as up to 15 teams each season have a realistic chance of taking the three promotion spots to the PL.

Premier League seems to be the main aim, but would Liverpool or Everton really sell out their prestigious history and brand just for a quick cash solution? I think not. Perhaps the money from Red Bull would buy/pay for the stadium expansion both teams are hoping for. Maybe they’d then be renamed “Red Bull Anfield” or “Red Bull Goodison.”

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Could ‘Red Bull Anfield’ or ‘Red Bull Goodison’ be added to Red Bull’s stadium portfolio?

Again, I’m not sure how well that would go down.

Some of the teams in London could be a more viable option, but without a huge influx of cash, can we really see the likes of West Ham, Crystal Palace or anybody else other than Tottenham, Arsenal or Chelsea making the Champions League anytime soon from England’s capital? I think not. However, if it ever did happen, surely there would be some kind of link up between MLS’ very own Red Bull side, the New York Red Bulls, in terms of player loans and other spin offs. That would be great for RBNY.

Anyway, if Red Bull want to invest in a Premier League team, they may want to buy a Championship team desperate for cash, that would be their best bet. Look at Cardiff City’s Malaysian owner Vincent Tan rebranding the Bluebirds with red kits and Malaysian dragons on the logo. And then there’s Hull City, bought by Egyptian Assem Allam wanting to drop AFC from Hull City’s name and rebrand them as “Hull City Tigers.” Both came up from the Championship last season after struggling financially, and are now lording it in the PL.

Both ownership groups at Hull and Cardiff seem to think a rebrand, in colors and name, is completely fine. Obviously the fans aren’t best pleased, but if the teams are performing well in the PL and the owners are splashing the cash to bring in top players, can the supporters really have too many complaints?

Creating a new image, new logo and new nickname seems to be all the rage amongst PL clubs, so surely teams won’t mind slapping the “Red Bull” brand in front of their team name…

So, which will it be? Red Bull Everton or Red Bull Liverpool?

Bayern fans unhappy with Champions League ticket prices

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MUNICH (AP) Bayern Munich fans were unhappy with the price of tickets for their team’s match at Anderlecht in the Champions League.

[ MORE: Study to show long-term affects of playing soccer ]

The fans held banners during Wednesday’s game saying, “Are your necks not full? Is your greed now finally satisfied?”

A Bayern fan group, Club Nr. 12, issued a statement saying Anderlecht had made 85 percent of the tickets available to the German club’s fans priced at 100 euros ($118).

“Even by the standards of the generally high-priced Champions League, this represents a new dimension for a first-round game,” said the statement, which thanked Bayern for supplementing the tickets so fans had could pay 70 euros ($82.50).

Many Bayern fans avoided the trip to Brussels altogether, while 91 percent of more than 2,500 Club Nr. 12 members said in a survey that ticket prices were “completely unacceptable.”

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Anderlecht spokesman David Steegen told The Associated Press that Bayern fans were charged “exactly the same price” as home fans who bought single tickets to the game. He said fans who bought a three-game Champions League bundle were offered a reduction.

UEL roundup: AC Milan advances after big win; Arsenal, Everton fall

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Both Premier League sides fell in Thursday’s UEFA Europa League play, but for one side the result didn’t effect their progression into the next round.

[ MORE: Ex-Brazil forward Robinho handed nine-year prison sentence ]

Arsenal dropped a 1-0 result to Cologne, however, the Gunners still moved into the Round of 32 after their Group H counterparts, Red Star Belgrade and BATE Borisov settled for a scoreless draw.

Meanwhile, Everton’s 2017/18 woes continued on the day as the Toffees suffered a brutal 5-1 defeat at home against Serie A side Atalanta. The win secures Atalanta’s place in the knockout phase, along with fellow Group E club Lyon — who also won on Thursday.

AC Milan put up five goals of its own in a convincing win against Austria Wien, while Lazio, Nice and Red Bull Salzburg were among the other sides to move into the next round after picking up the necessary results.

Below are all of the scores from Thursday’s Europa League action.

Astana 2-3 Villareal
Konyaspor 1-1 Marseille
Rosenborg 0-1 Real Sociedad
Lazio 1-1 Vitesse
Viktoria Plzen 2-0 Steaua Bucuresti
Lokomotiv 2-1 Copenhagen
Zenit 2-1 Vardar
Red Bull Salzburg 3-0 Vitoria
Athletic Bilbao 3-2 Hertha Berlin
BATE 0-0 Red Star Belgrade
Ostersunds 2-0 Zorya
Koln 1-0 Arsenal
Nice 3-1 Zulte Waregem
Lugano 1-0 Beer-Sheva
Ludogorets 1-2 Istanbul
Braga 3-1 Hoffenheim
AEK 2-2 Rijeka
AC Milan 5-1 Austria Vienna
Lyon 4-0 Apollon
Maccabi Tel Aviv 0-2 Slavia Praha
Sheriff 1-0 Zlin
Partizan 2-1 Young Boys
Skenderbeu 3-2 Dynamo Kyiv
Everton 1-5 Atalanta

Ex-Brazil forward Robinho sentenced to nine years in prison

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Former Brazil international Robinho has been sentenced to nine years in prison after being convicted of rape on an Albanian woman back in 2013.

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At the time, Robinho was playing for Serie A side AC Milan.

The court decision came down on Thursday after the 33-year-old forward had failed to attend any court hearings in Italy, where the crime reportedly took place.

Robinho is believed to have acted in the crime with five other Brazilians, to which their whereabouts are unknown to this point.

Reuters has reported that Robinho is entitled to up to two appeals and “Italy would only launch extradition proceedings once this legal process is exhausted.”

The Brazilian is known for his club playing days at AC Milan and Manchester City, among other clubs in addition to his time with the Selecao. Robinho took part in the 2006 and 2010 World Cups with Brazil.

Premier League Preview: West Ham vs. Leicester City

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  • West Ham is winless in last six against Leicester
  • Jamie Vardy has two goals, two assists in last 4 games vs. West Ham
  • Hammers have nine points through first 12 matches

West Ham United will host Leicester City from the London Stadium on Friday (Watch live at 3 p.m. ET Friday on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com) as David Moyes and Co. look to climb out of the relegation zone.

[ MORE: Prince-Wright’s Premier League picks ]

Moyes and West Ham currently sit 18th in the Premier League through 12 games, and will be hoping to see an improvement in their form with the potential returns of Andre Ayew and Marko Arnautovic.

The Hammers are without Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez and Michail Antonio, as well as James Collins.

The Foxes are winless in their last two matches, and coming off of a 2-0 defeat to Manchester City over the weekend. Robert Huth and Matty James remain sidelined for Puel’s group, but otherwise, the club is relatively healthy.

What they’re saying

West Ham boss David Moyes on turning the team’s form around: “We need to give the supporters something to shout about and something that looks half decent, and then they will support us. I want everyone to be together. I am not aware of the problems before I came, I was a bit surprised when I heard (chanting against the board). “I want them behind us to give us a chance of winning.”

Leicester’s Claude Puel on confidence in his players“I have a good feeling with the players; they listen, they work hard on the pitch and I feel their ambition. We will see in the next games, with a good adaption and rotation, to see them approach it with a positive attitude.”

Prediction

The Hammers are missing several key attacking pieces, including Hernandez, which will surely make the defensive task easier for Leicester. The Foxes attack hasn’t been at its finest, but they’ll be facing a West Ham back line that allows over two goals per game (25 in 12 matches).
West Ham 1-3 Leicester