What today’s papers are saying: Saturday April 6
Daily Express: Katie Walsh will ride out the nation’s favourite today with £15 million placed on her to become the first woman jockey to win the Grand National. Also: Nigel Adkins has accused his successor Mauricio Pochettino of showing him a lack of respect ahead of today’s relegation clash between Reading and Southampton.
Daily Mirror: Jose Mourinho will demand £12 million a year to take the Chelsea job - and wants Frank Lampard to stay. Also: Roll up for the ‘National lottery’ - the John Smith’s Grand National at Aintree today is the most open for 49 years.
Daily Star: Football League clubs have declared war on the Premier League after accusing them of trying to kill off the English game. Also: Chelsea’s Mr Nice is learning how to turn nasty - after getting bullied by his team-mates in training.
Daily Mail: Fernando Torres last night vowed to ``never, ever give up’’ in his effort to recapture the goal touch which once made him the world’s deadliest striker. Also: A second horse fatality at Aintree last night intensified the focus on this afternoon’s Grand National.
The Sun: Fernando Torres last night vowed to stay at Chelsea until at least 2016. Also: Katie Walsh today bids to become the first woman jockey to win the Grand National.
The Independent: Thirty giant leaps for a horse, one grand step for womankind. Such are the terms of emancipation available today to Katie Walsh - on behalf not only of her own sex, but also of a sport aggrieved both by its own luck and the judgement of others. For any one rider, male or female, the stakes seem so exorbitant as to introduce a crazily messianic quality to proceedings at Aintree today. Because Walsh must feel she is no longer merely trying to win a horserace, but to preserve a way of life. Also: Harry Redknapp, the Queen’s Park Rangers manager, said last night that political criticisms of the appointment of Paolo Di Canio as Sunderland head coach were rooted in double standards.
The Times: Harry Redknapp was thinking about miracles yesterday. Oddly, for a man who has built much of his mystique on his ability to purvey them, the Queens Park Rangers manager was not invoking them , or seeking to channel his inner Errol Brown and state his belief in them, but dismissing them altogether. Also: Nigel Adkins answer should not, perhaps, have come as a surprise. The Reading manager had been asked whether the style of the Southampton side that will visit the Madejski Stadium this lunchtime was substantially different to that which he inculated in his players beforeunceremonious his uncremonious dismissal from St Mary’s Stadium three months ago.
The Guardian: Aintree racecourse will stage the Grand National on Saturday under unprecedented scrutiny after the Topham Chase over the same course on Friday resulted in the death of one horse and was the subject of two false starts. Also: Paolo Di Canio has been praised by John Terry ahead of the Italian’s first game in charge of Sunderland, with the Chelsea captain convinced the Wearsiders’ controversial choice as manager will inject the necessary passion and urgency to haul his new club away from the relegation zone.
Daily Telegraph: In the rare moments she has to idle a little, Katie Walsh permits herself to picture what it would be like to be the first woman to ride the winner of the Grand National. Also: Brendan Rodgers, the Liverpool manager, has explained the financial and footballing reasons that remain an obstacle to Andy Carroll earning a fresh start at Anfield next season.