Said & Done

The week in football: Spurs staying frugal; Batman's new career; Jack Warner on vulgarity; plus Gigi's prison faux pas

Modern football: club of the week

Offshore-owned Spurs, boosted by £27m of public grants last year, spending their £86m Gareth Bale money on new talent. Spurs said in 2011 that committing to their new stadium project without "the correct level of public support" would be "wholly irresponsible".

• Also easing the stadium deal last year: Haringey councillors, agreeing to let the club drop its £16m legal commitment to fund social housing, schools and transport, due to "challenging market conditions". Spurs said the £16m burden on the club had made the whole scheme "not viable"; councillors agreed to take £477,000 instead.

Man of the week

Russia's sports minister Vitaly Mutko, upset with "western mass media" for skewing coverage of the country's anti‑gay laws: "It's an invented problem." Mutko's previous best rebuttals: 1) Calls western media reports of racist Russia fans at Euro 2012 "stupid and untrue"; 2) Says reports of corruption in Russian football are a western media construct: "No matter what we say, we are portrayed by them as a hotbed of corruption." 3) Says allegations that he claimed expenses for 97 breakfasts eaten during a 20-day excursion are media "nonsense and nitpicking".


Fifa's verdict on Russia's anti-gay laws ahead of the 2018 World Cup: "Fifa will not give up on its principles. We are intelligent people … we will not accept any discrimination." (2010 – asked how gay fans will get on at Qatar 2022, Sepp giggles: "They should refrain from any sexual activities.")

More misunderstandings

Also clarified last week: 1) An unnamed Corinthians fan, telling Globoesporte why his group reacted to a photo of striker Emerson kissing a man by picketing the club's training ground with banners reading: "No Gays," and: "Fuck off, this is a place for men." "It's not homophobia … We just don't want it here." 2) Lazio fans, reacting after their Curva Nord section was closed due to racism. "It's ridiculous … The monkey noises are not offensive racial chants – they are simply banter to tease our opponents."

Taking a stand

Among the no-nonsense responses to Lazio's racism problem: "If racist chants come from four idiots then it's right to close that section of the stadium. But if it's the whole stadium doing it, then close the entire place" – Flavio Tosi, mayor of Verona, convicted of inciting racial hatred in 2009.

Transfer window news

Signing of the week: Bulgaria's ex-Prime Minister Boyko "Batman" Borisov, who denies mafia links and threatening journalists, signing for second-tier Vitosha Bistritsa as a striker, aged 54. Vitosha: "He will always have a place in our team, so long as his body allows. For us, he's simply priceless."

Comeback of the week

Trinidad: former Fifa talisman Jack Warner, now back in domestic politics as an anti-corruption crusader: "Almost everything in this country is at a standstill, except corruption and crime, which gallop out of control." Jack says the government has become "power hungry" and "vulgar".

Manager news: moving on

• Croatia, 8 Aug: Dinamo Zagreb coach Krunoslav Jurcic denies claims of a rift with president Zdravko Mamic: "There's nothing in this. Mamic has called, he's very happy with everything. Everything's good. He's very happy indeed." 22 Aug: Mamic sacks him.

• Brazil: 21 Aug, Criciúma coach Vadão says he's looking forward to facing Ponte Preta on his birthday. "I'll spend my birthday in the stadium, it will be a perfect day for me." Striker Fabinho: "We'll give him the ultimate gift, a victory. He deserves it." 22 Aug: Criciúma lose; Vadão sacked.

Vision of the week

Romania: Aurel Ticleanu, new manager at Brasov, on his long-term plan: "This club used to be a saucer of milk. Now that saucer is broken, so it is down to me to pick up the shards, flick the switch, and let there be light."

Gigi latest

Romania: new last week from Gigi Becali, currently running Steaua from prison: 1) Agreeing by phone to sell Vlad Chiriches to Spurs for £7.5m; 2) Facing a prison inquiry over claims he used other inmates' phonecards without permission.

Discipline news

Argentina: Lanús forward Lautaro Acosta, on why he and Santiago Silva celebrated a goal by putting on firemen's helmets pitch-side, earning a booking each. "I didn't know there were rules against it. I put it down to ignorance."

Plus: zero publicity

Brazil: Model Cida Alves, refusing to use links to footballers to gain publicity, unlike rival contestants for 2013's Miss Bumbum title. "That is not my approach. Though I have a very famous player indeed. My player played for Brazil."

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