Lunchtime Football Round-Up 19th March

Afternoon all,

Michael Owen has announced that he is going to retire from professional football at the end of the season. Owen has enjoyed a number of years playing at the top level for teams like Real Madrid, Liverpool and Manchester United. But injuries in recent years has meant that Owen’s playing time had been at a minimum. And since joining Stoke in the summer, Owen has only scored one goal in seven appearances for the Potters

Chelsea defender Gary Cahill has been ruled out of England’s World Cup qualifiers against San Marino and Montenegro in the next two weeks because of an injury he picked up earlier this week. Newcastle defender Steven Taylor has been called up as a replacement for Cahill who has joined Rio Ferdinand and Phil Jagielka on the sidelines

Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis has placed a £60 million price tag on star striker Edison Cavani, who has scored a staggering 27 goals for the side this season. It is rumoured that Manchester City and Chelsea are the two sides interested in signing the Uruguayan in the summer. But this will only happen if they meet Napoli’s demands

Manchester City defender Vincent Kompany looks set to feature for Belgium despite the concern of City, as Kompany had been out with a calf injury since January which has seen him not feature for them. But Belgium’s assistant coach has claimed that Kompany will not definitely be playing

Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker has denied reports linking him with a return to former club Wolfsburg image summer and claims he wants to stay with Arsenal. But the performance of the German has been highly criticised in recent weeks as the Gunners defence have leaked quite a few goals due to defensive errors

West Brom goalkeeper Ben Foster has said that he expects to receive some criticism after he ended his self-imposed two year exile from international football to be part of the England squad to face San Marino and Montenegro

Blackburn Rovers have sacked Michael Appleton after being in charge for only two months at the club. Appleton joined the Rovers from Blackpool in mid January after Henning Berg was sacked. But a poor run in form which has seen Blackburn win only four of their last 15 is believed to be the main reason for his sacking

Yeovil have completed the double loan signing of Brighton defender Vitalijis Maksimenko and Charlton striker Jordan Cook, both for a month

Southend have loaned out midfielder Alex Woodyard to Braintree for a month