Sturridge case overhauls bookmaker policy
The recent ban for Daniel Sturridge has led to one bookmaker changing the bets it is willing to take from punters. The Mirror reports that Betway will no longer take bets on football transfers after Sturridge was punished following a string of bets on his rumoured move away from Liverpool in 2018, and Atletico Madrid defender Kieran Trippier is also in the sights of the FA for something similar.
Paper Round’s view: Realistically, there is no serious difference beside insider trading of stocks and the use of the betting system to trade on transfers when you have inside knowledge. While it does not carry the same weight in terms of potential financial advantages, it does make sense to remove the ability to profit from such knowledge.
Bayern make Real Madrid ace 'galactic' offer – Euro Papers
Newcastle takeover in doubt
A WTO report has left Newcastle United’s £300m takeover by a Saudi-backed consortium in doubt. The Sun claims that the WTO finding that the state, 'acted inconsistently with rules on the protection of intellectual property (IP) by failing to take actions against a pirate commercial-scale broadcaster operating openly in the country,' could lead to the Premier League preventing the takeover going ahead.
Paper Round’s view: There are basic, fundamental human rights reasons to oppose and prevent the takeover from the Saudi government, but they don’t necessarily offer an easy way out for the Premier League’s current rules. The WTO breach may be a more practical solution, though it should give the league the encouragement they need to change the rules for the future - ideally for the better.
Fans warned to stay away
The League Two play-off games commence on Thursday, and the Daily Mail reports that season ticket holders can access the matches on a streaming service for free, while others will be charged to access the game. Fans are being asked to stay away from the various grounds in order to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
Paper Round’s view: People have been a little riled by the idea that fans can't be trusted to stay away from grounds, and while most people under lockdown have been eminently sensible, the fact is that even government officials have breached the guidelines, sometimes egregiously, and a warning about gathering in large groups is merely a safety-first approach.
Guardiola concerned by fitness
The Telegraph reports that Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola is concerned that his players are not yet fit enough for the return of Premier League action. City will take on Arsenal on Wednesday, and despite a mini pre-season plus five substitutes, Guardiola said: 'You ask me how is the team? I don’t know - I don’t know their physical condition and for how many minutes they will be in the high'
Paper Round’s view: Guardiola is famously expert on getting the most out of his players and has even had players back extremely early from initially worrying problems, such is his knowledge. If he says that players are not yet certainly fit, then we can expect difficulties not just for Manchester City but teams who have access to more rudimentary training approaches.