Former West Ham striker Carlton Cole sacked by Indonesian club Persib Bandung

Former England striker Carlton Cole was sacked by his Indonesian club Persib Bandung on Wednesday after failing to score during the 2017 season.

The ex-West Ham United front man was given limited opportunities, playing in only five matches, often as a substitute.

With his former Premier League rival Peter Odemwingie shining — he’s the equal top scorer with 13 goals for top-of-the-table Madura United — patience has run out with the 33-year-old who joined at the start of the season along with ex-Chelsea midfielder Michael Essien.

“We have decided to let [Cole] go because he has failed to perform as expected,” manager Umuh Muchtar told DPA.

“Maybe he was injured before joining but he wasn’t honest about it.”

Earlier in the week, Muchtar had elaborated on his issues with Cole. “It’s the management’s decision to dismiss him, we will have a new player in the second round of the season,” the Persib boss said, according to Sky Sports.

“He plays very badly compared to the other [foreign players] who have joined Persib. He had the worst performance.”

Persib, 2014 Indonesian champions, are 14th on the Liga 1 table, with 21 points from 17 matches.

Before his dismissal, Cole had lashed out on social media at Muchtar, and complained that he had not been treated fairly.

“I have only started two games out of, I think, 16 games, because he has not wanted to play me,” Cole said.

“So I have come on three times and I have only started two games. Me and Michael Essien, we didn’t have a preseason, so we have had to try and play catch up.

“We are in a bad position anyway, so he is just trying to point fingers, [rather than blame] his bad management.”

According to reports, Cole’s import spot could be taken by an unnamed Brazilian striker, playing in the second tier in Portugal.

Sigi Schmid replaces sacked Curt Onalfo as coach of LA Galaxy

LA Galaxy have sacked head coach Curt Onalfo with immediate effect, and have replaced him with former LA coach Sigi Schmid, the club confirmed on Thursday.

Onalfo has overseen a dismal run of form as the club sit ninth in the Western Conference on a five-game losing streak with the news of his sacking first reported by the LA Times.

Schmid will sign a contract through to the end of 2018 and will take his first training session on Thursday.

Schmid, who was fired by Seattle Sounders months before they won the MLS Cup under Brian Schmetzer, took charge of the Galaxy for five years from 1999-2004 and won the MLS Cup in 2002.

He has also won the MLS Coach of the Year Award twice, first in 1999 and then again in 2008 when he won the MLS Supporters’ Shield/Cup double with Columbus Crew.

Schmid also won the MLS Supporters’ Shield and four U.S. Open cups with Seattle before he was fired. Onalfo’s assistant Ante Razov will remain with the club but in a different role.

Leonardo Bonucci have medicals at Milan ahead of shock €40m move from Juventus

Juventus defender Leonardo Bonucci appears poised to complete a shock move to Serie A rivals AC Milan.
Bonucci was seen arriving at the Casa Milan headquarters on Friday, with his car greeted by around 200 excited fans as it drove past.
It marks a return to San Siro for Bonucci, who began his career with Milan’s foes Inter, but he made only one substitute appearance in the league along with a handful of Coppa Italia matches.

An agreement between the two clubs over a fee believed to be €40 million was reportedly struck in the early hours of the morning, paving the way for one of the most unexpected transfers in recent Serie A history.

Only a few weeks ago, Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri said that Bonucci would be the “leader of the Juventus dressing room.”

That no longer seems the case, however, with Bonucci now in Milan for a medical and to discuss personal terms, which could reportedly make him Serie A’s highest-paid player amid suggestions of a €7.5m annual contract.

A day earlier the Lazian centre-back – a 70-time Italy international – sparked intrigue among Juve fans by tweeting: “Back to work. I’m ready to start again!”

Their initially faint fears appear to be well-founded as the player for so long part of a solid three-man defence alongside Giorgio Chiellini and Andrea Barzagli is about to depart the Allianz Stadium.
He had loan spells at Serie B sides Treviso and Pisa before he joined Genoa in 2009. However, he was almost immediately transferred to Bari in a co-ownership deal.

He was ever-present in his one season with Bari, forming a strong central-defensive partnership with Andrea Ranocchia, before being snapped up by Juve.
Bonucci has won Serie A in each of the last six seasons with Juve, and also won the league title with Milan’s city rivals Inter in 2006.

Sunderland’s assistant manager Paul Bracewell resigns

​Paul Bracewell has left his role as assistant manager of Sunderland with immediate effect.

The 54-year-old, who had three spells with the Black Cats as a player, returned to the club in a coaching capacity in 2013, taking up a role within the academy.

Bracewell was promoted to the first-team coaching staff in 2015, becoming assistant to then-manager Dick Advocaat.

He also served in that role under Sam Allardyce and David Moyes.
“It has been a great honour to serve Sunderland AFC as a player, coach and assistant manager for a combined total of 10 years,” Bracewell told the club’s website.

“I would like to thank the club and its staff, but also the supporters for the great backing I have received throughout my Sunderland career.

“I now look forward to the next challenge in my football career.”

Spanish youth coach sacked after 25-0 win

The coach of a Spanish youth team has been sacked after a 25-0 win – because the club’s management decided the margin of victory went against the spirit of the game.

After defeating fellow Valencia side Benicalap C on 3 June, Serranos B’s under-11 manager was removed from his position.

“We believe in encouraging respect for your opponents. After the result, we decided that the manager should leave,” Pablo Alcaide, who helps run the side, told El Pais.

However, the Spanish newspaper also published comments from the manager’s lawyer, who insisted his client had not pushed players to score as many as they could.

The manager instead instructed his side “to pressure only in their own half” in the eight-a-side game, but Benicalap C “continued to attack and left spaces in behind”, the lawyer said.

The game was Benicalap C’s final match of the season. They finished bottom of the league with zero points and 247 goals conceded from their 30 matches.

El Pais reports that such one-sided scores are not infrequent in Spanish youth football, but many clubs stop counting once they have scored more than 10 goals.

Southampton sack manager Claude Puel 

Southampton have sacked manager Claude Puel after one season.

The 55-year-old Frenchman’s future had been in doubt despite Saints finishing eighth in the Premier League and reaching the EFL Cup final, having succeeded Ronald Koeman who left St Mary’s for Everton last summer.
And a club statement on Wednesday read: “Southampton can today confirm that it has terminated the contract of Claude Puel with immediate effect.

“Everyone at Southampton would like to express our thanks to Claude for his hard work and commitment this year. We wish Claude well for the future.
“The search for a new management team is underway. We are confident that we will find the right fit in line with the long-term vision of the club.”