Manchester fighter Jack Massey’s boyhood dreams of bringing a Lonsdale Belt home could finally come true this week. The 26-year-old will face Richard Riakporhe in a scheduled 12-round fight at York Hall, Bethnal Green today, Thursday December 19th, with the whole thing screened live on Sky Sports.
Massey has had a steady rise to the top since he first picked up the sport at age 12, when his father took him to his old boxing club in Buxton, Derbyshire. By the following year, he has won his first title and before long, he had three junior ABA Champion titles to his name.
Early 2013, at the age of 19 Jack then won the senior ABA championship beating Chris Billam on points. Later that year Massey decided to turn Pro and quickly built a reputation as an unbeatable opponent with 16 wins in 16 fights including 8 knockouts.
To date, Massey has had 53 Amateur fights, has boxed for England, winning Gold at the Tri-nations and Bronze at the Youth Commonwealth Games.
Now, he has his sights firmly set on the British Cruiser-weight Title with big rewards on the line including a fight with new European champion Lawrence Okolie. Massey has set a goal to win the title tonight and defend it at The Dome next year, where he has fought and won four times in his professional career in front of a sell-out crowd.
While the road leading to today’s bout hasn’t been without struggles – Massey was ruled out of the British-title challenge in July due to injury – he has since come back stronger than ever with the help of his team and coach Robert Rimmer Jnr / Phoenix Camp, Manchester
There’s no doubt that Londoner, Riakporhe, who has won all 10 of his fights, is a tough opponent, but Massey believes he is in top form and well prepared to face him.
“I’m just thinking about getting in there and showing people what I’m all about. I have waited a long, long time for this. I’ve had my ups and downs, but I’m here now, ready to fight for the British title,” he says.
Come on Jack!
Manchester City announce new six-part documentary following historic treble win
You can follow the Blues through their journey to winning the treble
Treble winners Manchester City have announced a new six-part documentary chronicling their three-cup victories.
City fans will be able to relive their team through their epic season of 2022/23 which saw them take home the treble, marking a historic achievement for the club.
Following the last documentary for Amazon Prime All or Nothing, the Blue’s new documentary will be called Together: Treble Winners, and will document behind the scenes footage of how events unfolded leading to City successfully achieving ‘football immortality by winning the Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup’.
The Manchester City website reads: “It [The treble] was a truly historic achievement and to celebrate, our acclaimed fly-on-the-wall documentary Together is returning to provide an exclusive look behind the scenes of our Treble-winning campaign.
“The six-part docuseries, currently in production, will offer fans the complete inside story of City’s greatest-ever season, with unseen footage charting the immersive journey our players and staff experienced en route to securing football’s Holy Grail.
“This is the story of a season like no other, as City once again stunned the world with the brilliance of our football.”
This statement might not go down so well with United fans who won the treble back in 1998/99 and may argue that theirs was ‘a season like no other’.
Either way, football fans who appreciate the game generally can simply watch the docuseries and get to find out what Pep said to players in team talks and all the dressing room antics that went on between teammates and backroom staff.
As for its release date and further details we will have to be patient just a little longer as Man City have only announced the new in-house production by City Studios will be ‘coming soon’, and that it is currently still in the production process.
What will the club have in-store for next season, which starts tomorrow, Friday August 11th?
Perhaps the ambitious bunch will take home all four trophies and win a quadruple? It’s a crazy thought but perhaps the Blues might be the ones to do it.
Let’s see how this season plays out…
Man United lose 3-1 to Wrexham during preseason tour in America
United’s pre-season friendly ended in defeat to Wrexham with their captain sent off
Manchester United lost 3-1 to Wrexham, in a game which saw striker Paul Mullin taken to hospital after a nasty clash with United goalkeeper Nathan Bishop.
In a friendly in San Diego, Ryan Reynolds’ Wrexham bounced back from the worrying injury blow securing their victory with headers from Elliot Lee, Aaron Hayden and Sam Dalby.
Manager Phil Parkinson later revealed Mullin suffered a punctured lung as their star player received oxygen before being forced off.
Just before the break the Red Devils pulled it back with Marc Jurado scoring to close the gap to 2-1, leaving United on the heels of the Welsh side.
Then just two minutes into the second half, United captain Dan Gore was shown a straight red card for a studs-up challenge leaving them with 10 men.
It seemed a fair decision at first look, but replays suggested the straight dismissal was harsh, and Gore appeared devastated as he left the pitch.
Any glimmer of hope that the Red Devils could get back into the game was looking dim following the sending off, and Wrexham made the most of their one man advantage.
Substitute Sam Dalby wrapped up the victory for Wrexham, as they secured their first ever Snapdragon Cup.
Meanwhile, it turned out to be a disappointing night for United’s youngsters, missing their opportunity to impress manager Erik ten Hag.
United’s first team will be back on Wednesday night as they take on Spanish side Real Madrid in a pre-season friendly.
Rob McElhenney, who was in attendance at the Snapdragon Stadium — which saw a record capacity — couldn’t hide his delight at the win.
But like all Wrexham fans, he will be hoping Mullin’s injury is not too serious with the new season just around the corner.
Manchester City’s £300m Etihad Stadium expansion set for approval
The planning committee will decide next week
Manchester City’s huge £300m expansion of the Etihad Stadium, to make it ‘the best in the world’ is set for approval.
The expansion plans, which could be given the go ahead next week, would increase its capacity to almost 62,000 seats and create a new fan zone and event space. First look CGI images depict how the expansion could look for the area.
Manchester Council’s planning committee has been recommended to approve the plans at a meeting to be held on Thursday July 27th.
The exciting plans to extend the north stand include building a 400-bed hotel, TV studio and roof walk attraction as well as a fan zone for up to 3,000 people.
Manchester City says its aim is to create a ‘best-in-class fan experience’ and turn the stadium into a ‘year-round entertainment and leisure destination’.
Planning permission was granted to expand the Etihad Stadium in 2014, but only the south stand was extended at the time. Town hall planners have now backed the latest application ahead of a final vote by councillors next week.
A 95-page report to the committee concludes that the proposal should be approved.
The report reads: “The [Etihad] campus’s international profile for sporting events, would be enhanced by these facilities and further drive forward the regeneration of East Manchester bringing jobs and economic growth to the area.”
Under the plans, the north stand’s capacity would be increased by 7,900 seats taking the total capacity to 61,968.
The current club merchandise shop would be demolished and replaced with an eight-storey building with a new store, ticket office and museum would be created offering an ‘interactive visitor experience venue’ on level 3.
The upper floors would be used as workspace for small businesses and start-ups. A nine-storey hotel with 391 bedrooms and 10 suites would also be built.
Between the hotel and club shop building, City Square would be ‘refreshed’ to create a new covered fan zone and event space with a 3,000 person capacity.
According to the report, the club has also agreed to sign a deal which would allow parts of the campus to be used by the community including local clubs and schools. A local labour deal also features in the Section 106 agreement.
The club would also pay for measures to improve ‘movement’ around the various venues, particularly for pedestrians. A waste management agreement aims to address litter and rubbish created on football matches and events.
Three letters of support have been received in relation to the application alongside five objections. The objections raise concerns about the design, specifically of the hotel, and the impact of the plans on the local community.
The planning committee will make the final decision on the outcome on Thursday, July 27th.