Mancini hints at Adebayor comeback for return date with United
ROBERTO MANCINI hopes to have Emmanuel Adebayor available for the second leg of Manchester City's Carling Cup semi-final against Manchester United at Old Trafford next Wednesday.
Adebayor is still in Togo on compassionate leave after surviving a machine-gun attack on the national team bus that left three people dead as they arrived in Angola for the African Cup of Nations 13 days ago. Although City have told the striker to take all the time he needs, Mancini said that the player "will be back in the next few days" and may feature against United as the club attempts to reach the first final of a leading cup competition for 29 years.
Patrick Vieira should also be available for the United game, although there is a chance that the former Arsenal midfield player may make his City debut in the FA Cup fourth-round tie away to Scunthorpe United on Sunday.
The prospect of Adebayor reuniting with Carlos Tevez up front for City should give United an added headache, but Ryan Giggs is confident that the Carling Cup holders can overturn the 2-1 deficit, much as they beat Derby County at the same stage last season despite losing 1-0 in the first leg.
"I hope it (the second leg) is similar to the Derby game last season," Giggs said. "We beat them quite comprehensively in the second leg so hopefully we can do that again. It is going to be tough because City are a good team. But there were enough signs, especially later on, that we can beat them."
Off the pitch there was more worrying news for United with the revelation that the club's debt burden will become more expensive for the Glazer family later this year, according to the latest company filings published.
Accounts for the club's holding company reveal that the total debt secured against United and its parent company has grown to £716m in the last year, and that interest payments on the most expensive portion of the debt will increase from August this year.
The accounts for Red Football Joint Venture Limited (RFJV) also confirm that, without the sale of Cristiano Ronaldo, Manchester United's holding companies would have recorded a significant loss. Despite an £80m profit on player sales courtesy of Ronaldo, the annual interest burden meant RFJV recorded a profit of just £6m.
In the year to June 2009 United's debt incurred interest of £68.5m, but that figure is likely to grow as the interest rate on £202m of payment-in-kind loans increases from 14.25pc to 16.25pc.
No explanation was given for the increase in the interest rate in the accounts, and a spokesman for the Glazer family declined to comment. (© The Times, London)