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Last Updated: Friday, 12 January 2007, 06:02 GMT
Beckhams' move dominates papers
Newspapers (generic)
David and Victoria Beckham's move from Madrid to Los Angeles is the talk of Friday's papers.

The story is the splash for all the tabloids - with the Daily Mirror and the Sun both having the same headline: "Posh and Bucks".

The former England captain's deal with LA Galaxy makes the Financial Times with the headline: "American Idol".

The Guardian goes for "End it Like Beckham". The paper calls it a perfect setting for the Beckham blockbuster.

80p-a-second

Inevitably, many of the papers have a dig about the money Beckham will receive - "Becks goes to Lollywood", the Daily Mirror declares.

And as the Guardian puts it: "So, David Beckham, what persuaded you to sign that 128m deal with LA Galaxy?"

The Sun calculates that he will be earning 80p a second - or 50 a minute - in his five year deal.

It is four times the wage of the best-paid players in the English Premiership, the Daily Mail points out.

Unexpected interest news

The figure uppermost in the minds of home owners this morning is 5.25% - the new Bank of England base rate.

The sudden rise is the main story for the Daily Telegraph, the Financial Times and the Daily Mail - and seems to have caught all of them by surprise.

The Guardian finds it hard to imagine more unexpected news - short of England beating Australia at cricket.

The shock was all the greater, the Financial Times says, because the Bank rarely changes rates in January.

Battle of Baghdad

There is a distinct shortage of optimism about President Bush's plan to send more than 20,000 troops to Iraq.

The Independent says the American military is now being called upon to fight the battle for Baghdad all over again, in more complex circumstances.

The Financial Times fears the "surge" of extra troops may end with the U.S. "surging" into Iran - and taking the Middle East to a new level of mayhem.

The Daily Mail describes the American push as another sad chapter in the war.

Holiday bonus

The Daily Express has cheerful news for hard-pressed workers in its main story, with the headline: "Millions gets eight days of extra holidays."

It reports the government is planning a change in the law to stop some employers from counting the eight bank holidays as staff holiday entitlement.

Finally, several papers introduce their readers to the Tower of London's first woman Beefeater, Moira Cameron.

But the Daily Mail reveals the new Beefeater is scared of ravens.


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