LiveScore Daily: The latest football news in bite-sized chunks
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Baggies chairman took £4.95m loan
West Brom chairman Guochuan Lai has confirmed that one of his companies received a £4.95million loan from the football club during the coronavirus pandemic last year.
Chinese billionaire Lai went public on the details of the deal prior to the club’s accounts for the 2020-21 campaign being published today.
Lai said: "The club's annual accounts for the 2020-21 season detail a loan to Wisdom Smart Corporation Limited, a related party to me.
"Regrettably, the coronavirus pandemic saw my international businesses suffer, particularly those in the hospitality and entertainment sector, which experienced an almost complete closure for long periods, and in March 2021 I received a loan from the football club.
"The upturn in the global economy has brought with it greater positivity and I can confirm I will repay the loan in full, with interest, by the end of the current calendar year and the funds will be available to the club during the January 2023 transfer window."
Interest on the loan is fixed at £50,000 with an initial repayment deadline of September 2021 having been extended to December 2022.
Mane and Salah lead CAF nominations
Former Liverpool team-mates Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah are the leading contenders to be crowned 2021-22 CAF Men's Player of the Year.
Mane, who left the Reds for Bayern Munich earlier this month, is expected to take the prize after helping Senegal edge out Salah's Egpyt on two notable occasions last season.
First, he scored the decisive penalty as his nation won the Africa Cup of Nations final in February before the Lions of Teranga once again broke Egyptian hearts via spot kicks in March's World Cup play-off.
Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy, Leicester midfielder Nampalys Mendy and Manchester City winger Riyad Mahrez were the other Premier League nominations on the 30-man shortlist.
Celtic land Bernabei
Alexandro Bernabei is looking forward to entertaining Celtic's "crazy" fans after joining the Scottish champions on a five-year deal.
The Argentinian full-back, 21, joins the Glasgow giants from Atletico Lanus in his homeland and has represented his country at Under-23s level.
Bernabei said: "I can't wait to be playing in the Champions League. I've heard that the people are crazy, so I can't wait to sense that feeling and emotion in Celtic Park.
"I feel grateful to the club for giving me this opportunity."
The youngster will become the first ever Argentinian player to represent the former European champions.
Botman over the moon at Toon
Sven Botman is thrilled to have finalised his switch Newcastle after seeing his dream Premier League move fail to materialise in January.
Dutch defender Botman, 22, was the subject of interest from the Magpies and Serie A giants AC Milan last winter but his former club Lille were determined for him to stay put.
However, the Tynesiders now have their man after agreeing a fee in the region of £31m earlier this week.
Speaking to De Telegraaf in his native Netherlands, Botman said: "I really wanted to go to Newcastle United in January, because I also heard, and that’s a cliche, I know, that a train like this doesn’t pass by very often. But the clubs couldn’t figure it out.
"AC Milan also gave me a good feeling, but Newcastle United felt just a little better in the end.
"And this might be better [signing in summer] because I can now experience a lot of preparation and I was able to say goodbye to Lille in a beautiful way."
Botman passed his medical on Monday and has agreed a five-year deal at St James’ Park.
Lille appoint Fonseca
Paulo Fonseca has been confirmed as the new manager of Ligue 1 side Lille.
He arrives as a replacement for Jocelyn Gourvennec, who agreed to part ways with Les Dogues a fortnight ago following a disappointing 10th-place finish last term.
Portuguese boss Fonseca, 49, has been out of work since leaving Roma in May 2021 and was linked strongly with moves to the likes of Everton and Newcastle in recent times.
Fonseca said: "I want to build a team that will make the fans proud every time they meet. Of course, we won't win every game, but I want to build a team that will have the ambition to win them all, as well as a courageous team."
In other managerial news, former Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde has returned for a third stint in charge of Athletic Bilbao.
Valverde, 58, is said to have pipped former Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa to the role in the Basque Country.