Rooney Halts Contract Talks, May Leave United for Madrid: Soccer Roundup

The following is a roundup of soccer stories from U.K. newspapers, with clickable links to the Web.

Rooney Running?

Wayne Rooney has stopped negotiations with Manchester United and may consider a move to Real Madrid because of disputes with coach Alex Ferguson and media scrutiny of his life, the Mirror said.

Rooney was going to get a raise from his current 90,000 pounds ($144,000) a week salary after the World Cup, although now the player has held up talks, the newspaper said.

Juventus for Johnson?

Liverpool defender Glen Johnson may be a January transfer target for Juventus, the Mirror said.

The player is under contract until 2013, but the Italian club may try to take advantage of the unsettled ownership situation at Liverpool, the newspaper said.

Van der Sar Replacement?

Manchester United’s Ferguson watched Rangers goalkeeper Allan McGregor during Scotland’s 3-2 loss to Spain this week as part of the club’s search for a replacement for Edwin van der Sar, the Sun said.

McGregor would cost 7 million pounds, much less than other goalkeepers United is monitoring, the newspaper said.

Jack’s Start

Arsenal teenager Jack Wilshere may start England’s match against France next month at Wembley as coach Fabio Capello tries out younger players, the Sun said.

Wilshere, 18, will probably be joined by Arsenal teammates Theo Walcott and Kieran Gibbs, as well as Manchester City’s Adam Johnson, the newspaper said.

Benayoun’s Blame

Israeli midfielder Yossi Benayoun blames Chelsea’s medical staff for missing the Achilles injury that will keep him out for six months, the Mail said.

The player will have an operation this weekend after Israeli doctors diagnosed the problem, which was dismissed as “something small” by Chelsea staff, the newspaper said.

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To contact the editor responsible for this story: Christopher Elser at at

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