Rumours spin a web of deceit

IT is amazing what you can pick up in toilets. During the trip to Sunderland on Tuesday I was flabbergasted to hear a couple of Sunderland fans boasting how they had fuelled the rumours that Sir Bobby Robson had quit.

IT is amazing what you can pick up in toilets. During the trip to Sunderland on Tuesday I was flabbergasted to hear a couple of Sunderland fans boasting how they had fuelled the rumours that Sir Bobby Robson had quit.

They were part of a concerted campaign by sad Mackems which ended up with Newcastle United issuing a statement denying their popular 70-year-old boss had gone.

Apparently yet another irresponsible internet site had been flooded with the total untruth which spread like wildfire in the north-east prompting calls to the local papers and St James' Park.

Robson was at the Stadium of Light, totally oblivious to the nonsense going on, and was back on the training ground as usual the following day getting on with the job.

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I have long advocated these websites be brought into line.

TALKING of managers getting the sack, it seems too soon for Peter Reid to be given his marching orders, which was the topic of conversation between some of the Leeds United board yesterday.

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You have got to feel sorry for Lawrie Sanchez, who not so long ago was being hailed as a top up-and-coming boss after Wycombe beat Leicester City in the FA Cup, but who was sacked on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Stockport have quashed speculation that Oldham boss Iain Dowie is to become their new manager.

Dowie and former Stoke manager Steve Cotterill have both been linked with the post but the club deny Dowie is to take over.

ENGLAND'S rugby stars arrive in Australia today on a mission to win the World Cup.

No expense has been spared in their preparation, with coach Clive Woodward making a simple deal with them. "We will pay whatever it takes, all you have to give is 100% commitment," he said.

It seems basic but you only have to look at their preparation, the planning and the performances so far to know that Martin Johnson, Jonny Wilkinson and co are focused on one thing and one thing only – winning the World Cup.

I see Sven-Goran Eriksson has sent them a good luck message. By the time the tournament kicks off for real against Georgia in a couple of weeks' time we will know if the football team has qualified for Euro 2004 in Portugal.

LET me add my congratulations to the no doubt numerous well-wishers to Colchester United's Phil Parkinson and Norwich City's Nigel Worthington, who have won their respective manager of the month awards for September.

Parky has surprised many, me included, by his success at Layer Road and I have to admit this doubting Thomas is making an unashamed U-turn.

After a slow start he has pushed the U's up the table with some cute signings and good coaching.

It is too early predict finishes but let us hope they can remain in the play-off places.

As for Mr Worthington, ditto in terms of new signings.

The loan duo of Darren Huckerby and Peter Crouch have been a revelation and shows sometimes how close a team is from getting it just right.

I know there will be many who would rather eat broken glass than wish their rivals well, but it doesn't hurt to give credit where it is due and Worthington et al have done well with four wins and a draw.

It was also quite an achievement for Division Three newcomers Yeovil, whose boss Gary Johnson took that award.

POSH fans hoping Barry Fry would be sacked as their manager have been given a severe smack in the teeth.

The larger-than-life Fry (left) has taken control of Peterborough United by acquiring a majority stake in the club.

The Posh manager is now the major shareholder at London Road, which means he will have the final say in the way the club is run.

And sacking the manager is not a priority.

OLDHAM'S administrators have issued another reminder to prospective owners that the club could fold on Monday.

Administrators PKF have confirmed they are still in negotiations with would-be investors "who have the ability to rescue the football club".

The Latics went into administration in August and with the deadline looming no consortium has come forward with an offer to buy the club.

SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAY have signed Preston goalkeeper David Lucas on a one-month loan.

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