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Latest news, sport and comment from the Guardian | The Guardian
Latest news, comment and analysis from the Guardian, the world’s leading liberal voice

Latest news, sport and comment from the Guardian | The Guardian
  • What next for Manchester United after David Moyes? live!

    Success stories that David Moyes had to compete against - Brendan Rodgers and David Pulis, the recent stats say - as interpreted by Alistair Tweedale for the Guardian Sport Network.

    Scooter and the Dead Kennedys already but the pop culture cross-over marches ever onwards as Heather Lyons succinctly offers this on United's immediate future: "Giggs and Scholes? Not exactly the Lannisters are they?"

    Popoola Ore offers a pleasing solution to the replacement issue with some Frankenstein-esque personality combination, below. Any other suggestions for hybrid managers created by meddling with things we don't understand?

    "If United do get Louis van Gaal, twill be like getting a hybrid of Guardiola and Mourinho - Guardiola's methodology and Mourinho's arrogance and occasional (everytime) madness."says Popoola.

    Just looked Scooter up on wiki. I fear the age gap between myself and the mighty McCourt is on show. Massive-selling German techno apparently. Who would have thought it? I can't do Scooter really but I am at home with this vision of the future from the Dead Kennedys.

    Hmm ... So, as it this the nature of these things,Andrew Sheena is less sympathetic to Chander Sharma's comments below. "The only defence people ever give Moyes is that he needs time," says Andrew. Not one person has given any positive to his tenure of management, just kept mindlessly claiming he needs time. Time time time. It means nothing! If that is the best thing you can say about him then it tells its own story doesnt it. The harsh truth of it is that he hasn't been able to get anywhere near the best of his players, tactically he has been out maneuvered by most half decent managers he has come up against, and he has not been able to get us playing anything close to decent football. He has failed by a wide, wide margin. People dont tend to forget Fergie was a slow starter, it is brought up constantly. It was not horrific either, but then again he didnt inherit the champions and had smashed Real Madrid with Aberdeen.

    Right, I have been unchained from the desk and I am going to use this freedom to escape from the building and visit the local sandwich emporium for some much-needed nourishment. But do not worry, my colleague Giles Richards has kindly agreed to step in for me while I do so. You can holler at him on giles.richards@theguardian.com. Speak soon.

    Andrei Kanchelskis, remember him? Of course you do, he was great (see below). Well someone has tracked him down and asked for his two cents on all these shenanigans. He did not hold back:

    Not all the players are ready to play for Manchester United, especially in defence and midfield. I do not understand why Rio Ferdinand and Rafael are still in the side. They are not up to the standard of Manchester United. They need to get rid of a few players across the pitch.

    Manchester United have responded to the earlier statements from Moyes and the LMA. They said:

    We do not accept that it was handled in an unprofessional manner. The decision was not taken until late Monday night and was communicated face-to-face first thing on Tuesday morning. When reports started emerging on internet news sites on Monday afternoon, no decision had been taken at that time.

    "People are all raving about what's going to happen to Man Utd now but very few are thinking about where does David Moyes go from here," says Chander Sharma. "Will he follow the same route as say Roy Hodgson (after Liverpool)? I've supported United my whole life and I must admit I was very much looking forward to seeing Moyes given time there. People forget that had Ed Woodward done his job and actually purchased the players we needed at the start of the season we wouldn't be where we are now. If Moyes has gone then so should Woodward. Granted Moyes hasn't been great but people tend to forget that SAF had a horrific first few seasons. In conclusion I'd say Moyes needed one more season and if the Glazers were unsure as to what Moyes would have done with £150 million then they only had to take a look at his track record at Everton, a very shrewd operator (the Fellini debacle aside)."

    You thought that Luke Shaw was going to Chelsea didn't you? You were wrong. You were very wrong.

    Manchester United are convinced a £30m deal to buy Luke Shaw on a £100,000 a-week salary is virtually complete in what is viewed as a major coup over Chelsea, with the sacked David Moyes largely responsible for convincing the Southampton left-back to spurn the club he supports.

    The prospective transfer would make Shaw English football's highest ever paid teenager and provides a boost for United in the wake of the Scot's departure as the club embark on finding his replacement ahead of a summer in which they are intent on a spend of up to £150m on rebuilding the squad.

    Kiran Kulkarni has a novel suggestion. "Enough of Klopp, Van Gaal, Guardiola guff. I think Sir Alex should return for at least one season & prove that it is the manager of the team who wins the titles not the players. He has Fellaini, Cleverly, Raphael, Smalling at his disposal to assist him conquer England again. He can also get Rooney a £400000m-a-week deal when he scores via that overhead kick. Does he fancy winning the league again & knock Liverpool right off their perch?"

    To imagine that Sir Alex Ferguson is fundamentally questioning himself at this juncture is to misunderstand the man, says Marina Hyde.

    The one thing it isn't, I'm afraid, is "hugely embarrassing for Sir Alex Ferguson". Quite how put out you are by that ineluctable truth is a matter of personal taste. You may in fact find it very palatable that the former Manchester United titan will regard himself as entirely unbesmirched by the sorry saga which on Tuesday saw his chosen successor find his desk in the lift. Or you may wish fervently that a chastened Ferguson were sitting right now in a luxury hotel room, crying his humiliated little heart out, as José Mourinho reportedly did after learning the United manager's job would be going to David Moyes in the first place.

    But to adopt either position counts as what the pop psychologists would categorise as projecting. Something can only really be deemed embarrassing if there is an embarrassee, and to imagine that Ferguson is fundamentally questioning himself at this juncture is to misunderstand the man, and everything that experience should have taught those who had the opportunity to observe him for so long.

    Had a dream last night which featured the old National Lottery advert, but it was Fergie's giant finger pointing down from the stands saying in a deep voice 'It's Mou'.

    You can't argue with that evidence.

    Here is our chief football correspondent, Daniel Taylor, on the latest from the LMA and Moyes.

    Did the LMA criticise Sir Alex Ferguson, one of their own, for "unprofessional manner" in which he recruited Moyes behind Everton's back?

    Ferguson tapped up Moyes and told him he had a new job - admitted by all - two days before Everton played a Merseyside derby

    "The most appropriate Scooter song for Utd this coming year," reckons Niall Rowantree, "is surely 'Back in the UK' from the 1996 classic album 'Our Happy Hardcore'. After all they're not going to be in Europe." Classic album? Really? That can't be right, can it?

    Once again we have the plan

    Driving you wild as good as we can

    It is time for Manchester United to get real, says Paul Wilson. Sir Alex Ferguson's legacy is long gone and the Theatre of Dreams is no longer the attraction it used to be as United search for a successor to David Moyes.

    Manchester United supporters must be hugely relieved that Sir Alex Ferguson is going to play a part in headhunting their next manager. He has achieved such a lot in the game, he knows the club inside out and he must have every promising coach's number in his contact book, so what could possibly go wrong?

    Apologies for the flippancy, but things have moved on a bit since the last coronation and United still do not appear to appreciate the seriousness of the new situation. They are still behaving as if Old Trafford is a dream destination, somewhere anyone in the managerial world would love to come and have a go, conveniently ignoring the actual nitty gritty of the club's reduced cirmcumstances. Nail a note to the front door saying "Job available" and Louis van Gaal would still come knocking, so why the need for the nod from Ferguson?

    Magnusson has this to say below the line.

    Very dignified speech from Moyes. Keeping his dignity despite a very public and protracted public humilation. They were right to let him go but its been handled very badly.

    No mention of players then?

    A very classy statement from Moyes.

    I sincerely wish him all the best for the future. He's still a decent manager and hopefully gets a new job soon.

    I'm not buying this 'dignified nice guy' stuff. He's just spent an entire season whining about anything and everything but himself. The FA with the fixture list, injuries, bad luck, referees, and then even going so far to criticise the players (the champions, remember) and Ferguson, falsely claiming he was left with an ageing squad. When Ferguson complained about fixtures he was roundly criticised, Moyes gets described as 'dignified'. Absolute rubbish. He's a whining loser who utterly failed to grasp the size of the task at hand and by all accounts treated seasoned pros who had just won the title like naughty schoolboys who needed to be whipped into shape. He's a negative, percentage football dullard who has achieved absolutely nothing in the game, ever.

    He's leaving with a £5 million pay off and will be picked up by another club. Tears not required.

    David Moyes leaving United with some class..,Shame to club couldn't act in a similar way....

    The staff on the desk have broken away off discussing their favourite Scooter song it should probably be this to cobble together this story on Moyes saying he 'understands' frustration of Manchester United fans.

    David Moyes has broken his silence on his sacking by Manchester United, saying he "understands and shares" the frustration of their fans at the club's disappointing season but suggested that the squad needed a fundamental overhaul to achieve success in the future.

    In a statement released by the League Managers Association, Moyes said: "To have been appointed as manager of Manchester United, one of the biggest football clubs in the world, was and remains something of which I will always be incredibly proud.

    Paul Ewart has been in touch re the Moyes statement. "What do you make of that? Asked you. I make of that: severance package agreed. Confidentiality Agreement signed." Probably, which is a real, real shame. Think I can speak for all when I say I would love to know what went down in that dressing-room after all those defeats.

    "What about Michael Laudrup for United?" honks asks James Mattick. "He has shown ability in the premier league already. Plays football that is easy on the eye. Won a trophy in the UK. Managed in Europe. Media darling. Unemployed."

    You'll notice he did not mention the players in that statement. Guessing he won't be having them down the local for his going away drinks.

    What do we make of all that?

    Those statements in full then are as follows:

    David Moyes says:

    To have been appointed as manager of Manchester United, one of the biggest football clubs in the world, was and remains something of which I will always be incredibly proud.

    Taking charge after such a long period of continuous stability and success at the club was inevitably going to be a significant challenge, but it was one which I relished and never had a second thought about taking on.

    The LMA is very disappointed with the nature of David's departure from Manchester United and to read extensive reports in the press, confirming David's sacking, before David himself had been spoken to officially by the club.

    Throughout his time at United, David, as he always does, has conducted himself with integrity and professionalism, values that he believes in and that have been strongly associated with the club and its rich tradition. It is therefore sad to see the end of David's tenure at United being handled in an unprofessional manner.

    While we are waiting for the full text, here's some snippets to keep you warm:

    I both understand and share their frustration. I have always believed that a manager never stops learning during his career and I know I will take invaluable experience from my time as United's manager. I remain proud to have led the team to the quarter finals of this year's Champions League and I remain grateful to Sir Alex Ferguson for believing in my ability and giving me the chance to manage Manchester United.

    League Managers' Assoc CEO @RichBevan7 on Moyes: "Sad to see the end of David's tenure at United being handled in an unprofessional manner"

    David Moyes has spoken via the medium of a LMA speech. Will have the full text of that statement quicker than you can spell supercalifragilisticexpialidocious backwards.

    "United now have to be very, very careful," cautions Ciaran Bradley. "All the signs are pointing to the best younger managers i.e. Guardiola, Klopp and Martinez being unavailable for the time being. In which case, the best tactic would be to approach Van Gaal to take over the role for 2-3 years to steady the club all the while, sorting a bumper contract for the best young manager in the game. If the decision was indeed made in February, then the wheels should have been set in motion months ago to do this, particularly given the seeming grey-area of international managers contracts.

    "My concern with this is that there is nothing to suggest any joined-up thinking at the executive level. There is a danger of over-analysing the catastrophic summer transfer window; it is not for me to suggest that nothing was learned by Woodward et al. But United need to be aware that there were issues that precluded them being at the real top table of European giants their location and relative under-investment in the squad that have been exacerbated by the lack of Champions League revenue and a tarnished public relations image.

    Here is a short video on what fans in Manchester reckon about all this jazz. Enjoy.

    "Lots of confident assumptions regarding Van Gaal's future" says Paul Ewart. "Barcelona's potential need for a new manager my well queer the pitch. Any thoughts?" Not sure he would be welcomed back to the Camp Nou again, would he? His first spell there, while successful, was dotted with rows with players especially Rivaldo and his second spall was something of a disaster. It is an interesting question though. Who will take over at Barça?

    Or Gary Megson?

    Has anyone asked Sven if he is free?

    Our Manchester correspondent Jamie Jackson has been back in touch re the rumours about Roy Keane taking over as Van Gaal's assistant manager. He says: "On the LVG wanting Roy Keane as assistant yarn, I'm told any thoughts of who might be the new permanent manager's No2 is getting ahead of the prime objective of identifying the prospective first choice candidate to be the No1." We wait in hope.

    While we all chin wag over Van Gaal and Klopp and Keane and Ancelotti, Eric Harrison, the ex Manchester United youth team coach and the man behind the development of those class of 92 starlets, reckons that they already have the man they need in one Ryan Giggs. Presumably shouting to TalkSport, he said:

    [Giggs] is a legend at the club. He is up there with likes of Bobby Charlton and Denis Law. He is well respected with all the players and supporters and he will get the atmosphere better on the training ground and at Old Trafford. The players will go into training at Carrington relishing the sessions and they will be flying at Old Trafford ... I used to call him a football nut because he took everything on board. He has got a chance [to be a top manager].

    "I wouldnt put it past the Glazers to go for Mourinho" says Mark Judd. "Theyve probably heard of him and that he is quite good."

    Tor-Kristian Karlsen has come up with 15 steps on how to chew gum in class five steps that Manchester United need to follow when appointing the next man in charge and he reckons that United will realise they need a more professional and rigorous recruitment process this time around.

    The reasons for Moyes' sacking are obvious and well-documented, but in summary the main issues for the board would be firstly the lack of progression in the team's style of play. United's performances have shown no signs of developing into something fluent and cohesive, and in modern football you no longer have three years to prove you can do this. Secondly, with no sporting director at United the onus is on the manager to decide transfers, and Moyes' record (the players he failed to sign, the failure of Marouane Fellaini and his inability to get the best out of Juan Mata) wouldn't instil confidence that he could do better with the investment needed in the summer. Finally, though you can live with some poor results if you can see signs of progress, there have been too many this season for a club of United's reputation with no positive indications of improvement.

    Very strange, and unusual, for Mourinho to bring Abramovich into it publicly. He's up to something. No idea what. But felt pre-planned.

    He wouldn't, would he? He couldn't, could he? We all know how bad he wanted it last time and how bad he is supposed to have reacted to not getting it.

    Who has the time to write this stuff?

    How to Chew Gum in Class in 15 easy steps.

    Have you spent that last few hours chewing your cuticles, chewing your pencil, chewing gum, chewing your hair and wondering what Jürgen Klinsmann has made of all this? Wonder no more, people, wonder no more.

    Very disappointed seeing David Moyes sacked by Man U. Coaches deserve an opportunity to build their own team. Hes a great manager !

    Below the line, CSlater reckons that appointing Van Gaal is the right thing to do.

    Got to be van Gaal for me over Ancelotti. Saw an interview a while ago about how, when he goes into a new job, the first thing he does is keep one of the old staff on (Giggs?) who knows the club and the youths. He picks out a few kids on the coach's recommendation and assesses them for himself. If they can do the job he wants them to do in the first team, they're in. He seems to have a better record with bringing in youth than Ancelotti.

    A blend of youth and a few big signings, along with a more tactical approach, Man Utd will fare better than this year I'm sure. This year they had six teams who had better managers than they did (Rodgers, Mourinho, Wenger, Martinez, Pellagrini, Potechino). Even Hughes, Sherwood and Pulis have claimed more points with worse squads than Moyes has since the New Year. With van Gaal, they'll have a manager that's worthy of of the club. He'll bend the players to his way and they'll respect him because of what he's won. He's not a small improvement but a major one imho.

    Re Louis van Gaal. Spoke to a journalist or two based in the Netherlands yesterday and they seemed pretty confident that the former Ajax, Barcelona and Bayern Munich top dog was ready to pose with the Manchester United mouse pads just as soon as Ed Woodward got in touch. There were also rumours this morning that if he were to get the job, he would want Roy Keane as his assistant manager. Keane and Van Gaal, what could possibly go wrong, eh? Speaking of Van Gaal, my colleague David Hytner wrote a piece about him which you can read by clicking on this hyperlink. (Hyper! Hyper! Anyone else remember Scooter? No? Just me then, yeah?)

    Here's our man in Manchester and his take on the news that Paul Scholes has given up his budding career as a TV pundit in favour of placing the cones in a straight line on the training pitch and showing the young ones how it is done.

    Paul Scholes has been added to Ryan Giggs' backroom staff at Manchester United, with the 39-year-old helping run Wednesday morning.'s training session.

    Scholes is helping Giggs along with Nicky Butt, the youth team coach, and Phil Neville and Chris Woods, the two members of the sacked David Moyes's backroom staff who have remained following the Scot's departure on Monday morning.

    David Moyes was nominated as his heir but all he did was emphasise Sir Alex Ferguson's staggering achievements, writes Russell Brand.

    David Moyes' face has now experienced the fate for which it looks like it was designed. The deep grooves of grief in his brow, his sunken, woeful eyes and dry parched lips a perspicacious sculpture carved in anticipation of this slap of indignity.

    Ferguson's selection of the "chosen one" now looks less like John the Baptist heralding Christ and more like what I would do if invited to select my ex's next partner; the mendacious dispatch of a castrated chump to grimly jiggle with futile pumps upon Man United's bone-dry, trophy-bare mound. Moyes, a name that, let's face it, sounds like a Yiddish word for eunuch, has endured 317 days of celibacy, whilst at Everton his former paramour, under the beguiling matador Martínez, is likely to claim the final Champions League place.

    While we are awaiting that story, here's mrbirtakim's take from below the line on the possibility of Jürgen Klopp taking over from where Moyes left off.

    It's really fascinating to see Klopp's name among contenders. Does anyone really rate this ManU side better than Dortmund?

    I'm not sure how many people would take given the opportunity of ManU job, with a below average squad, high expectations and no CL football next year and leave a club like Dortmund? A great history doesn't really help managers when it comes to getting the results -ask poor Dave.

    ... Manchester United have confirmed that Paul Scholes will assist Ryan Giggs and co. We'll have the full story from our man in Manchester, Jamie Jackson, with you soon enough.

    If you spent yesterday in a deep cave on Mars with your fingers in your ears humming the latest James Blunt song, then may have missed some interesting stories. First up is this one:

    Sir Alex Ferguson will be asked to take a prominent role in decidingManchester United's next manager despite an acknowledgement within the club that he was responsible for choosing the wrong man last time.

    United are deliberating between Louis van Gaal and Carlo Ancelotti to replace David Moyes after the former Everton manager was sacked in a 7.40am meeting with the club's chief executive, Ed Woodward. Diego Simeone, the Atlético Madrid coach, is also being considered but United are leaning towards a more experienced candidate and their initial discussions, involving Ferguson, have concluded that the job has come too early for Ryan Giggs, even if he exceeds expectations in his four games as interim manager.

    When David Moyes was unveiled as Sir Alex Ferguson's successor after 27 trophy-laden years at Old Trafford, the rhetoric was almost biblical. One Scot passed the flame to his anointed countryman, exhorted the faithful to give "the Chosen One" time and emphasised the extent to which the club was not like any other.

    The end, just 10 months after a smiling Moyes walked into Old Trafford clutching a six-year contract, was brutal and underlined the extent to which Manchester United can no longer differentiate itself.

    Yawwwwwwwwwn. What? No, no, that's not my reaction to having to spend the next couple of hours live blogging the events at Old Trafford, that's my reaction to having to spend 90 minutes of my life being transported to the 19th century last night. While that was about as much fun as being dragged to Ikea when the sun is shining hard and your friends are all spending the day practising their extreme ironing techniques, today should bring some much needed relief and some much needed fun. We can discuss whose next in the Manchester United hot seat! We can point large fingers of blame! We can ... wait, come back!

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  • County cricket live!

    Richard Gibson was at Headingley to watch Yorkshire beat Northants, while Andy Wilson is busy below the line reporting on Lancashire v Warwickshire from Old Trafford

    With Alastair Cook and Ravi Bopara currently batting for Essex at The Oval, it's worth noting that there will be a significant cricketing breakthrough at the ground tomorrow.
    Surrey are hosting a disability day featuring a tri-series between their own Learning and Physical Disability Teams, and those of Essex and Hampshire. They believe this is the first time senior disability cricket has been played at a first-class ground.
    There will also be coaching on the outfield for children with special educational needs between 10am and 2pm, a table cricket session in the Ken Barrington Centre, and tours of the ground and other non-cricketing activities.
    The distinguished former Middlesex team-mates Mike Gatting and Paul Downton are expected to cross the river wearing their big hats from the MCC and the ECB respectively, and Paul Taylor, the former Northants and England left-arm seamer, is also involved - I had no idea he is the head of the Surrey Cricket Board.
    Here at Old Trafford, Warwickshire haven't given up hope of an unlikely win. Paul Horton, after grafting 220 balls for 84 and apparently steering Lancashire towards safety, has just been bowled by Jeetan Patel, after breaking the shackles by hitting a couple of boundaries off Chris Woakes. Lancs are now 157 for five, with a lead of 80, so they should be ok, especially with rain forecast. But you never know.

    Yorkshire's first win of the season, against 11 of Northamptonshire's 12 fit players, was completed at 12.54pm when Adil Rashid terminated the innings' second biggest stand of 50 between David Murphy and last man Azharullah. The latter was the one to go, prodding forward and edging a leg-break.
    Jack Brooks finished with career-best match figures of eight for 112 against his former club. Meanwhile, Yorkshire have reiterated that the hand injury sustained by Gary Ballance, a centurion in this match, is merely a cut and damage to a finger nail. He remained off the field today as a precautionary measure.
    Yorkshire 23 points, Northants 2.

    Northamptonshire have found Yorkshire's bowling too hot to handle this morning, and they are just one wicket away from defeat.
    Rob Newton hardly gave himself a chance, though. Just four balls in, a loose square drive lobbed straight to point to set the tone, and there were plenty of loose strokes to follow. Nightwatchman Maurice Chambers admonished himself for nicking Jack Brooks to second slip, Andrew Hall was smartly caught in his follow-through by Liam Plunkett, while Steven Crook and David Willey both edged the dependable Steven Patterson.
    Azharullah batted for half-an-hour to thwart Durham last week, and he has had a life just a handful of minutes into this effort - dropped at shot cover by Plunkett off Patterson. Northants 202-9.

    Peter Moores has enjoyed a successful start to his last day as Lancashire's coach, thanks to Jimmy Anderson. Moores kept a clean sheet for the "Old'uns" against the "Young'uns" in the Lancashire squad's kickabout before the fourth day of their Championship match against Warwickshire, and Anderson scored both their goals in a 2-0 win.
    "It's a sad day in some ways, yeah," Moores told Dominic Cork in an interview for Sky Sports News immediately after the final whistle. "It feels a bit strange actually. For five years I've lived here and I've loved it. I'm very excited about the new job, obviously, but when you walk away from mates it's sad."
    Moores had already addressed the Lancashire players on the Old Trafford outfield one last time, with the arrangement of their huddle seeming significant. The captain Glen Chapple and his deputy Paul Horton were on his left. Gary Yates, his assistant, was on the right, and Moores handed over to the former off-spinner, surely another clue that he will be given
    greater responsibility working alongside Chapple for the rest of the season.
    Moores is not exactly going to go out in a blaze of glory. The near-washout of the third day's play removed any chance of Lancashire coming from behind in this game, but at least they are now well-placed to secure a draw, after Paul Horton and Luis Reece came through a potentially tricky 22-over session yesterday evening.
    Moores's critics will doubtless seize on the fact, pretty meaningless at this stage of the season, that he will leave Lancashire at the bottom of the Division One table, mainly as a result of their opening defeat against Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge.

    Rob Newton spent over three hours at the crease to defy reigning champions Durham victory in Northamptonshire's first match back in the top-flight last week but one feels it would take something even more spectacular from him to prevent 2013 runners-up Yorkshire chalking up their first win.
    Newton is the last recognised batsman on the visitors' card and resumes alongside nightwatchman Maurice Chambers in a score of 149-4.
    The weather forecast also favours the home team, who will take the field without Gary Ballance. Although an X-ray last night gave the England Test player the all-clear, he is nursing a nasty cut on his right hand, incurred in trying to take a low slip catch late on day three.

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  • Three children found dead in London

    Woman named locally as Tania Clarence is arrested after four-year-old girl and twin boys aged three are found at house

    A 42-year-old woman has been arrested on suspicion of murder after three disabled children were found dead at their home in south London.

    The bodies of a four-year old girl and twin boys, aged three, who all suffered from a genetic condition, described as life-limiting, were discovered after police were called to a large semi-detached home on an affluent street in New Malden on Tuesday evening.

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  • Clip joint: dystopias

    Five of cinema's most memorably grim depictions of mankind's future. What others belong on the list?

    If cinema provides any indication of where humanity is headed, wed better start appreciating the here and now all too often, science fiction seems to tell us one thing: the future looks grim.

    Dystopian futures are a genre staple, a glimpse into the fictional (and non-fictional) failures of urban life. Heres our pick of five iconic dystopias - what would your choice be to join the list?

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  • Max Clifford jury told they can reach majority verdicts
    Jurors fail to reach unanimous agreement after more than 22 hours of deliberations concerning 11 indecent assault charges

    The jury in the trial of Max Clifford have been told they can reach majority verdicts after failing to reach unanimous agreement after more than 22 hours of deliberations.

    Jurors have been considering 11 indecent assault charges against Clifford since last Tuesday afternoon at Southwark crown court in London.

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  • My guilty pleasure: Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle
    Playful, nauseatingly colourful and indisputably terrible, the second Charlie's Angel film was out of synch with its dark and moody times. Now it looks like a feminist masterpiece

    As studios clamber to launch the first female superhero movie franchise, how quickly we forget that we had and spurned two movies featuring athletic, intelligent, near-superhuman female leads who kicked ass without letting it define their womanhood. Playful, nauseatingly colourful and indisputably terrible, the Charlie's Angels movies were made at the wrong time, in an era when action was supposed to be dark and moody, not light and fluffy. A decade or so later, and today's schlong-centric superhero output makes Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle look like a feminist masterpiece.

    It may pass the Bechdel test with ease but it's difficult to argue that Full Throttle subverts the male gaze when director McG can't peel his lens off Cameron Diaz's butt. Instead, it preaches the Cyndi Lauper gospel: girls just wanna have fun, and dammit, they'll make you have fun, too even if it's at the cost of a coherent narrative. So, while Charlie's Angels Diaz, Drew Barrymore and Lucy Liu must track down two rings containing classified witness-protection info, they don't seem to be in a particular rush to save the world. More movies should take time out from matters of global importance to, say, enrol in a burlesque show, or stage an impromptu dance sequence at a high school reunion.

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