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/ 7 May 2008

Grant revels in Chelsea’s revival

Avram Grant believes Chelsea were a fading force before he took over and led his team to within touching distance of a Premier League and Champions League double. When Grant replaced Jose Mourinho as Chelsea manager in September, the Israeli claims he found a club in danger of imploding.

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/ 12 February 2008

The route of riches in Putin’s Moscow

When Vladimir Putin drives to work every morning from his presidential bungalow he doesn’t pass the poor, the needy or the hungry. Instead, he passes Gucci, Armani and Prada. In the unlikely event that his presidential Mercedes breaks down, he could pop into Barvikha Luxury Village, an elite shopping complex just down the road from Putin’s dacha.

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/ 23 January 2008

Putin deploys new weapon — his judo master

He has been accused of bullying the neighbours, turning off Europe’s gas supply and — as one diplomat appalled by Russia’s treatment of the British Council put it — ”punching a librarian”. But now Putin, apparently fed up with Russia’s poor image abroad, has decided to do something about it: he has sent for his old judo master.

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/ 18 January 2008

For club or country?

There has been much debate about whether the African Cup of Nations should be held at the end of the European season so that there is not a club-versus-country clash. Two football experts discuss the pros and cons. The continental showpiece kicks off in Ghana on Sunday.

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/ 20 December 2007

Putin, the Kremlin power struggle and the $40bn

An unprecedented battle is taking place inside the Kremlin in advance of Vladimir Putin’s departure from office, with claims that the president presides over a secret multibillion-dollar fortune. Rival clans inside the Kremlin are embroiled in a struggle for the control of assets as Putin prepares to transfer power to his hand-picked successor Dmitry Medvedev.

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/ 10 November 2007

I knew I could do it, says Chelsea’s Grant

Avram Grant insists he never doubted he would silence the critics who claimed he had no chance at Chelsea. When Grant took charge in the aftermath of Jose Mourinho’s dramatic departure in September, it seemed the Israeli coach would find it hard to last a month if one listened to the cynicism that greeted his appointment.

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/ 28 September 2007

Chelsea: A search for style

Avram Grant did his best to be charitable towards Jose Mourinho this week. The new Chelsea manager said that ”nobody at the club was happy” about his predecessor’s departure. He agreed that the timing last Wednesday night was inopportune and he seemed to suggest that the Portuguese had his sympathy.

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/ 22 September 2007

Chelsea usher in post-Mourinho era

A new era without Jose Mourinho gets under way at Old Trafford for Chelsea on Sunday, as they play their first English Premiership match under new manager Avram Grant against Manchester United. Mourinho’s time at the Stamford Bridge helm came to an end in the build-up to their visit to the current champions.