Press Association Rojo is equally comfortable at centre-back as he is at left-back and played all 120 minutes of July’s World Cup final as Argentina lost to Germany after extra-time in Rio de Janeiro. The 24-year-old began his career in his homeland with Estudiantes de la Plata and spent a single season with Spartak Moscow before moving to Sporting in 2012. He also has 28 caps for his country and cannot wait to play his part in Louis van Gaal’s new era at United. “It is such an honour to say that I now play for Manchester United,” he said. “The Premier League is the most exciting league in the world and to have the chance to play in it for the world’s biggest club is a dream for me. “I am young and am very keen to continue to learn the game, so playing for such an experienced technical coach as Louis van Gaal is a fantastic opportunity for me. “I have joined United to work hard with my team-mates to win trophies and I know that the manager shares that ambition.” Rojo joins Ander Herrera and Luke Shaw as Van Gaal’s third high-profile signing since taking over earlier in the summer and the Dutchman believes he will be a useful addition as the former Bayern Munich boss implements a new 3-5-2 formation at Old Trafford this term. “Marcos is a very gifted defender,” he said. “He has played at the highest level in world football and can play either as a central defender or left-back. The Argentina international will cost United £15.98million and moves to Old Trafford on a five-year deal. “Manchester United is delighted to announce the signing of defender Marcos Rojo from Sporting Lisbon for a fee of 20million euros, with Nani joining the Portuguese club on a season-long loan,” read a statement from United. “Marcos joins on a five-year contract.” Manchester United have completed the signing of defender Marcos Rojo from Sporting Lisbon with winger Nani heading in the opposite direction on a season-long loan. “He has ability, physical strength and a willingness to learn that means he has a very bright future ahead of him. “He had a very strong World Cup and has been playing in Europe for a couple of years now. He is a very good addition to the team.” United lost centre-backs Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic alongside left-back Patrice Evra this summer and Rojo will add to a defensive unit which was largely criticised following the defeat to Swansea at the weekend. The move for Rojo had been complicated by a row between Sporting and a third-party ownership group, while the player upset his employers by initially refusing to train in a bid to push through the deal, although he later apologised and returned to work. The 27-year-old Nani, who moved to Manchester seven years ago, previously spent four years as a Sporting player after leaving Real Massama in 2003. He has made 228 appearances in all competitions for United, scoring 40 goals, but has rarely been a regular starter during his time in the Barclays Premier League. Meanwhile, United have dismissed reports linking them to unsuccessful bids for Thomas Muller and Marco Reus. The club insist rumours of failed moves for the German pair are untrue, with a United spokesman telling Press Association Sport: “It is not true that we made offers for Muller or Reus at any stage.” Marouane Fellaini looked set to be making a move out of the north west but that may now have been scuppered with the Belgian sustaining an injury in training. United have not commented on the extent of the injury, but pictures in The Sun showed the 26-year-old on crutches with his left foot in a protective cast. Fellaini had been expected to tie up a loan move to Serie A club Napoli before the end of the transfer window and that move is clearly now in doubt.
An interesting partnership has been announced between NRG Esports and San Francisco Shock and University of California, Berkeley. Announced on ESPN today, Berkeley will launch a community center and ‘several esports initiatives’ on the university’s campus.One of the academic centers in one of the campus halls of residence will be renovated and sponsored by the two teams. The NRG and the Shock logos will also feature on UC Berkeley’s Cal Esports kit. It’s key to remember here that the Overwatch League team, known as the Shock, shares ownership with NRG – which includes celebrity involvement such as Shaquille O’Neal as Co-owner, plus the likes of Jennifer Lopez amongst the investors. Morever, Andy Miller, NRG Esports Chairman, is also a co-owner of the Sacramento Kings as is Mark Mastrov, another Co-owner who is also the Founder and CEO of 24 Hour Fitness. The SF Shock and NRG esports are incredibly proud and excited to announce a first of its kind partnership with the #1 Public University in the country. We can’t wait to see what the future holds with @UCBerkeley!!!For more information: https://t.co/EuS498cR3W pic.twitter.com/tzJbV4JkFk— San Francisco Shock (@SFShock) April 18, 2018Miller said of the news: “By investing in this esports program, we’re investing in the future: technology, reinvented community, new learning models, and of course, the students.“Not only is UC Berkeley one of the most prestigious institutions for higher learning in the world, but it also runs the best collegiate esports program in the country. We look forward to the many things we can do together not just in our Northern California market, but hopefully throughout the esports community as well.”The renovated centre will feature ‘academic, health and wellness programs for student gamers, as well as host regular events.. These will include watch parties for San Francisco Shock and more. Furthermore, as expected, there’ll likely be some academic collaboration too with potential opportunities to tie in esports with academic courses, according to ESPN’s Jacob Wolf. Speaking to Wolf, UC Berkeley Interim Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Stephen Sutton said: “We’re just growing this set of partnerships now. We’re starting with this community center, as we’re calling it, rather than an arena, because we really want to focus on the concept community where a lot of things happen there; even things like TED Talks, for example, where people come in and talk about the gaming industry and jobs in the gaming industry.“From our perspective, this is designed to be a holistic community environment rather than just a place where students compete.”As another string to the bow of this partnership, UC Berkeley, and the two teams will be kicking off a student-led women in gaming initiative with the goal of promoting diversity and opportunities for female students keen on esports and gaming more widely.UC Berkeley Student and Gaming Community Leader Cherie Lin commented: “Thanks to the new center and our partnerships, we can build on that dedication to promote gender equality in the gaming community, in addition to creating new opportunities for the entire student body.”Esports Insider says: With San Francisco Shock looking for a venue to call home for future seasons of the Overwatch League, could the UC Berkeley campus provide a smart option? Generally speaking this is a fantastic partnership, UC Berkeley is a world-renowned university with an incredible history. Any academic esports focused additions to courses here would be hugely positive for the industry. Hopefully all the initiatives they have planned prove popular, starting with the viewing parties on-site.