Germany makes financial surplus from World Cup
The World Cup title has earned the German Football Federation a surplus of 4.5 million euros ($5.7 million) for the year. Half of the profit will go to the German Football League, which runs the Bundesliga, and the other half to the federation budget.
Luis Suarez's long wait is almost over. The much-maligned forward will play his first minutes on Saturday against Real Madrid after completing his ban for biting an opponent four months ago at the World Cup. ''(Suarez) will have some minutes for sure, how many is the million-dollar question,'' Barcelona manager Luis Enrique said on Friday, after having wavered on the question for most of the week in the run-up to the clasico. ''It's an important occasion for him, to play against Madrid, and make his official incorporation with the team.'' Suarez hasn't played an official match since biting Italy's Giorgio Chiellini in June.
PROFILE-Soccer-'Babyface' Gallardo rejuvenates Argentine game
Marcelo 'Babyface' Gallardo made his River Plate and Argentina debuts at 17 and is now making waves as a young coach in the tough Argentine first division. When Gallardo's River team visit Atletico Rafaela on Sunday they will be defending a 19-match unbeaten run in all competitions achieved during his first 100 days at the helm since he took charge at the beginning of the season. Gallardo inherited the team as champions from Ramon Diaz but they have improved under the 38-year-old, who is among several young coaches breathing new life into the Argentine game.
UEFA punishes Serbia, Albania for stadium disorder
Serbia received tougher sanctions than Albania when UEFA punished the Balkan rivals on Friday for the on-field violence sparked by a banner being flown by a drone over the stadium. The European Championship qualifier in Belgrade was abandoned last week after an Albanian nationalist banner was flown in by a remote-controlled device, sparking fighting among players and fans. Although the source of the banner remains unclear, UEFA ruled that Albania forfeited the Oct. 14 match because its players refused to return to the pitch amid the disorder. UEFA's disciplinary body awarded Serbia a 3-0 win, but docked the three points gained by a win.
8 people arrested in Latvia in match-fixing probe
Eight people have been arrested in Latvia on suspicion of fixing a Champions League qualifying-round game last year. Two players from Latvian champion Daugavpils, one of the teams involved, were among those arrested, police spokesman Dairis Anucins said on Friday. Two club officials and four people with ''ties'' to the club were also arrested, Anucins said, adding the others were part of ''an organized group'' behind the scheme. UEFA alleges that a Champions League second qualifying round game on July 17, 2013, between Daugavpils and Swedish club Elfsborg was fixed.
Reuters Sports Schedule at 1400 GMT on Friday, Oct 24
Reuters sports schedule at 1400 GMT on Friday: - - - - TENNIS WTA Finals, Singapore Indoor Stadium (to 26) Sharapova grinds out first win but exits Finals SINGAPORE - Maria Sharapova recovered from a second-set meltdown to record her first victory at this year's WTA Finals with a 7-5 6-7(4) 6-2 triumph over Poland's Agnieszka Radwanksa on Friday but the Russian still bowed out of the elite eight-woman tournament. ...
Soccer-Suarez to return in clasico, says Barca coach
* Suarez to feature at Real's Bernabeu stadium * Uruguay forward's biting ban expires on Friday (Adds details, quotes) BARCELONA, Oct 24 (Reuters) - Luis Suarez, whose four-month ban for biting an opponent expires on Friday, will make his official Barcelona debut in Saturday's La Liga clasico at Real Madrid, coach Luis Enrique said. Suarez will play some part in the match at the Bernabeu, his first competitive action since he sunk his teeth into Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini's shoulder at the World Cup finals in Brazil, Luis Enrique told a news conference. "He will play some minutes," added the former Spain midfielder, who will preside over his first clasico since taking over as Barca coach at the end of last season.
Soccer-Why always me? Balotelli might have a point
By Sam Holden LONDON, Oct 24 (Reuters) - When Mario Balotelli scored for his Manchester City side at the Old Trafford home of their bitter rivals three years ago, he lifted his sky blue shirt to reveal a message asking the question 'Why Always Me?'. Back then, Balotelli's shirt stunt was met with amusement and admiration -- the act of a maverick who had scored the opening goal in a 6-1 demolition of Manchester United. Fast forward to Anfield on Wednesday evening and the now- Liverpool striker's decision to swap shirts with Real Madrid defender Pepe at halftime of a 3-0 mauling by the Champions League holders was met with derision from the home fans and anger from his manager. It is something I will deal with on Thursday," Rodgers said.
Angerer won the award last year, and Wambach was the recipient the year before. The list of 10 also includes Japan's World Cup winner, Nahomi Kawasumi, 2006 award winner Marta of Brazil, and Nadine Kessler of Germany. There are also Veronica Boquete of Spain, Nilla Fischer of Sweden, Aya Miyama of Japan, Louisa Necib of France and Lotta Schelin of Sweden.
Soccer-Real have Ramos back for clasico but Bale sits it out
Real Madrid will have their combative Spain centre back Sergio Ramos available for Saturday's "clasico" against Barcelona but Wales winger Gareth Bale is out, coach Carlo Ancelotti said on Friday. Ramos, who has twice been sent off in recent clasicos, has shaken off a calf injury and should partner Pepe in the middle of defence after missing Wednesday's 3-0 Champions League victory at Liverpool, Ancelotti told a news conference previewing the game at Madrid's Bernabeu home. Barca top the standings with 22 points after eight matches and have yet to concede a goal in the league this season.
BERLIN (Reuters) - Human Rights Watch has heaped unusual praise on the International Olympic Committee for including human rights clauses in new contracts to be signed by future Olympic host cities, saying other organizations should follow suit. The IOC has for years been criticized by human rights groups including HRW, especially after awarding the Olympic Games to China's Beijing in 2008 and Russia's Sochi in 2014. The latter Games were also tarnished by a Russian anti-gay propaganda law that opponents said curtailed the rights of homosexuals in the country. ...
Soccer-Serbia get walkover v Albania, three points deduced
BELGRADE, Oct 23 (Reuters) - Serbia have been awarded a 3-0 walkover against Albania for last week's Euro 2016 qualifier, abandoned following a brawl between the players after a flag stunt, but also had three points deducted, the Serbian FA said on Friday. Serbia have also been ordered to play their next two home games in Group I behind closed doors, while both Serbia and Albania have been fined 100,000 euros (126,410 US dollar) the Serbian FA said. European soccer's governing body UEFA, which imposed the sanctions, was not immediately available for comment. (1 US dollar = 0. ...
Soccer-Giant-slaying Wanderers ready for biggest game - Popovic
By Nick Mulvenney SYDNEY, Oct 24 (Reuters) - Western Sydney Wanderers have already confounded huge odds by reaching the Asian Champions League final at the first attempt but their players are in no mood to settle for that, coach Tony Popovic said on Friday. The two-year-old Australian club take on Al-Hilal of Saudi Arabia in the first leg of the final at their Parramatta Stadium home on Saturday, having seen off a string of the biggest clubs in Asia in their maiden continental campaign. While former Socceroo Popovic has rightly earned plenty of plaudits for his inspirational leadership, he said the ambition of the players had been the driving force behind their success.
Soccer-ISL probes allegation of assault on Pires
(Fixes typo in headline) MUMBAI, Oct 24 (Reuters) - The Indian Super League (ISL) said on Friday it is looking into allegation that former France midfielder Robert Pires was punched in the face by an opposition coach during a halftime altercation in Thursday's match in Goa. Former Brazilian great Zico, the coach of FC Goa, said Pires told him about being hit by Atletico de Kolkata coach Antonio Lopez Habas in the tunnel when the teams left for the half-time break. Cavin Lobo's second-half brace took the Kolkata franchise, co-owned by La Liga champions Atletico Madrid, to a 2-1 win in the ill-tempered match, during which seven players were shown yellow cards, after Brazilian Andre Santos had given the hosts the lead in the first half.
Soccer-Al-Hilal's pedigree means nothing in Asian final - coach
By Nick Mulvenney SYDNEY, Oct 24 (Reuters) - Al-Hilal's long history of success will mean nothing when they take on upstarts Western Sydney Wanderers in the Asian Champions League (ACL) final first leg on Saturday, coach Laurentiu Reghecampf said on Friday. "Saud didn't train yesterday but today he is much better, I hope to have him on the field tomorrow," Reghecampf said of the midfielder, who won the ACL twice with Al Ittihad.
Soccer-Liga de Futbol Profesional Boliviano results and standings
Oct 24 (Infostrada Sports) - Results and standings from the Liga de Futbol Profesional Boliviano matches on Thursday Thursday, October 23 Nacional Potosi 0 Blooming 0 Oriente Petrolero 2 Real Potosi 1 Sport Boys 1 The Strongest 1 Wednesday, October 22 Bolivar 6 San Jose 1 Club Petrolero 1 Jorge Wilstermann 1 Universitario de Pando 2 Universitario de Sucre 3 Standings P W D L F A Pts 1 Jorge Wilstermann 12 5 6 1 17 9 21 -------------------------2 Oriente Petrolero 12 6 3 3 16 12 21 3 Bolivar 11 6 2 3 23 13 20 4 Blooming 12 5 4 3 18 17 19 5 San Jose 11 6 1 4 19 19 19 6 Real Potosi 12 4 4 4 11 10 ...
Soccer-Stellar Lamela is hot Spur as Tottenham hit five
* Outrageous strike by Lamela helps Spurs win 5-1 * Goals aplenty in other Europa League matches (Adds quotes, details) By Toby Davis LONDON, Oct 23 (Reuters) - Tottenham Hotspur's Erik Lamela scored a stunning 'rabona' goal to light up Thursday's Europa League ties, wrapping his left boot round the back of his right leg 20 metres out and blasting the ball into the top corner. Elsewhere, the goals were liberally spread among the games in Europe's second tier competition with Borussia Moenchengladbach hitting five while Besiktas, VfL Wolfsburg, Salzburg and Villarreal all netted four times.
Stoke City-Southampton Preview
Confidence shouldn't be an issue for Southampton as they welcome Stoke City to St Mary's on Saturday. Ronald Koeman's new-look Saints (5-1-2) have defied all expectations with their magnificent start, and last weekend's 8-0 demolition of Sunderland was one of the biggest wins in the history of the Premier League. Last Saturday's goal-fest made it five wins and a draw from eight games for the south coast side, leaving them third in the table and behind only big-spending Manchester City and Chelsea. Having lost so many star players - and their previous manager - in the summer, Southampton would have been forgiven for stuttering at the start of the new campaign, but new signings Graziano Pelle and Dusan Tadic have inspired a glut of goals, with many of the existing midfielders also weighing in with strikes of their own.
Hull City-Liverpool Preview
Fresh from their Champions League demolition at the hands of Real Madrid, Liverpool will be looking to make it three domestic wins in a row as they welcome Hull City to Anfield on Saturday. Liverpool (4-1-3) scored twice in added time to rescue a win against Queens Park Rangers last weekend, but the defensive weaknesses exposed in that game were ruthlessly punished by a destructive Real Madrid on Wednesday night.
Crystal Palace-West Brom Preview
West Bromwich Albion welcome Crystal Palace to the Hawthorns on Saturday, fresh off a richly-deserved point against Manchester United. Alan Irvine's West Brom (2-3-3) have impressed at times in their opening eight games, but conceded an 87th minute equaliser to draw 2-2 with United on Monday. The young English striker has been in spectacular form in the opening months of the campaign, and his second-half strike against United made it six league goals in eight appearances. Albion goalkeeper Ben Foster picked up a knock on Monday and is likely to be replaced by Boaz Myhill between the sticks for this game, but Myhill revealed the Baggies are confident after their showing against the Red Devils.
Manchester City-West Ham United Preview
Though it can be argued West Ham United has been the surprise package of the early season in the Premier League, Saturday afternoon's match versus reigning champions Manchester City likely will provide an accurate measuring stick of just how far the Hammers have come and possibly, how much they have left to go. Few people, if any, would have expected West Ham (4-1-3) to be occupying a Champions League spot at any point during the season. "It's good that we're getting the results our performances merit at the moment," coach Sam Allardyce said in his Thursday news conference. "At the moment we're very good but we have to remember we're only eight games in." One of the keys to West Ham's strong start has been their offence.
Alvaro Saborio and Kyle Beckerman both scored for Real Salt Lake in its regular-season finale on Wednesday.
Soccer-UEFA Europa League group H results and standings
Oct 23 (Infostrada Sports) - Results and standings from the UEFA Europa League Group H matches on Thursday Thursday, October 23 FK Krasnodar (Russia) 2 VfL Wolfsburg (Germany) 4 Lille (France) 0 Everton (England) 0 Standings P W D L F A Pts 1 Everton 3 1 2 0 5 2 5 2 VfL Wolfsburg 3 1 1 1 6 7 4 -------------------------3 Lille 3 0 3 0 2 2 3 4 FK Krasnodar 3 0 2 1 4 6 2 1-2: Next round
Brazil players told not to wear hats, earrings
Brazil players are being told not to wear hats, earrings or flip-flops while serving the national football team under the command of coach Dunga. They also can't use mobile phones or tablets at certain times, and are discouraged from engaging in religious or political discussions. The internal code of conduct was published Thursday by the Folha de S. Paulo newspaper, Brazil's largest daily. The Brazilian football confederation confirmed its existence during a news conference in which Dunga announced the squad for friendlies against Turkey and Austria in November.
A bruised and battered Sunderland side face Arsenal at the Stadium of Light Saturday seven days after suffering their worst defeat in the Premier League. The Blacks Cats (1-5-2) were routed 8-0 at Southampton last weekend in a performance coach Gus Poyet described as "embarrassing and unacceptable". Santiago Vergini and Liam Bridcutt both contrived to score own goals as the Saints ripped apart the Wearsiders' defence. It's unfortunate we have to wait a week to try and put it right but that's all we can do." Poyet's side had traveled down to Southampton in good spirits after claiming their first league victory of the season with a 3-1 home win against Burnley on Oct. 4.
Two of world football's great tacticians go head-to-head for only the second time in a competitive match when Jose Mourinho's Chelsea puts its unbeaten record in the Premier League on the line against Louis van Gaal's Manchester United on Sunday. Mourinho was given his break in management by Van Gaal when he worked as an assistant to the Dutchman at Spanish side Barcelona from 1997-2000, and the mutual respect between the pair lasts to this day. When Mourinho's Inter Milan beat Van Gaal's Bayern Munich 2-0 in the 2010 Champions League final, it was a win for the pupil over his master.
Timbers-FC Dallas Preview
The Portland Timbers almost certainly need a victory in their final match - and definitely need some outside help - in order to make a return trip to the postseason. They'll try for their first-ever road win over playoff-bound FC Dallas on Saturday night. The Timbers (11-9-13) are one point behind Vancouver for the final Western Conference playoff spot. They would earn a second straight berth with a win and a Whitecaps loss or tie against Colorado later in the evening.
By Simon Evans BRIDGETOWN Barbados (Reuters) - Major League Soccer commissioner Don Garber says an apparent lack of political will is making the bid to set up a franchise in Miami "complicated" and that David Beckham will need to find a stadium -- or no club will be formed in the city. Former England international Beckham has an option for an MLS franchise, which he has intended to use in Miami. But he has so far had two proposals for stadium sites rejected by local politicians. "I'm neither optimistic (nor) pessimistic," Garber told Reuters in an interview. ...
Soccer-No bad feelings towards Mourinho, says David Luiz
By Julien Pretot PARIS, Oct 23 (Reuters) - Jose Mourinho may not rate him as a defender but Paris St Germain centre back David Luiz says there is no bad blood between him and former club Chelsea. Luiz, who captained Brazil in their nightmare 7-1 defeat by Germany in the World Cup semi-finals in July, joined PSG in the close season for a fee of 50 million pounds ($80.17 million). Chelsea manager Mourinho said he would only miss Luiz on a personal level and "as a central defender, not at all" but the player said it was his own decision to leave Stamford Bridge. "I decided to move and PSG showed me a nice plan for the moment and for the future.
Leicester City-Swansea City Preview
Gary Monk may think diving is a disgrace, but Swansea City's recent play certainly won't have him feeling good. Less than a week after an alleged dive led to another defeat, the Swans will try to capitalise on a meeting with newly promoted Leicester City on Saturday. Swansea (3-2-3) started the season by outscoring opponents 6-1 while winning three straight matches, but they've followed that by surrendering nine goals during a 0-2-3 stretch. Monk was left seething after Sunday's 2-1 defeat at Stoke, as the Swans' lead vanished with a penalty kick just before half time.
By Simon Evans BRIDGETOWN Barbados (Reuters) - Sunil Gulati, the president of the United States Soccer Federation, has given his backing to head coach Juergen Klinsmann after the row over American players returning to MLS. Klinsmann's comments expressing concern over the form of players, such as Michael Bradley and Clint Dempsey, who have left European clubs to come back to MLS, brought a sharp rebuke from MLS commissioner Don Garber last week. ...
Soccer-Exasperated Rodgers plays down Balotelli incident
By Mike Collett LONDON, Oct 23 (Reuters) - Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers looked exasperated when he asked "Is this the Mario Balotelli press conference?" as he was quizzed on Thursday about the latest headline-grabbing incident involving the Italian. Rodgers was speaking the day after Liverpool were dismantled 3-0 by Real Madrid in the Champions League and ahead of their Premier League match against Hull City on Saturday. The immediate focus was on the 25-year-old international striker who has been roundly criticised for swapping his shirt with Real Madrid defender Pepe as the players went off at halftime at Anfield on Wednesday with Liverpool trailing 3-0. The shirt-swap, which seemed wholly out of place at that point, was caught by TV cameras and provoked a storm largely because Balotelli had given another below-par, disinterested-looking performance and did not reappear for the second half.
As Dominic Kinnear prepares for the next stop in his coaching career, the Houston Dynamo hope to give their long-time manager a proper send-off before heading in a new direction themselves. Kinnear coaches his final match with the visiting Dynamo on Friday night against the Chicago Fire. One day after Kinnear announced he would leave Houston (11-16-6) at the end of this season to again coach San Jose, the Dynamo lost for a third time in four matches, 2-1 to New England at home last Thursday. He guided Houston to MLS Cup titles in its first two seasons and two more trips to the league finals in 2011 and 2012.
Financially disadvantaged, Freiburg deploys an array of coping strategies to stay in Germany's top division. Here, at a glance, is how one of the Bundesliga's most modest clubs makes ends meet: --- BUILD, NOT BUY: Because Freiburg cannot afford to buy many players, it ''builds'' them instead. Freiburg opened the school in 2001, investing big in youth training just as German football authorities were making such academies obligatory for Bundesliga clubs. The academy recruits young teens from the Freiburg area and others - 22 of them this year - from further afield who live either at the school or with host families in the Black Forest city.
The business realities of the modern game are brutal. Case in point: Freiburg's plight in the Bundesliga.
Belgium breaks into top 4 of FIFA rankings
Belgium has moved into the top four of the FIFA monthly rankings for the first time and former World Cup winner Spain has dropped to 10th following a loss to Slovakia in a European Championship qualifier. Despite a tough start to its Euro 2016 qualifying campaign, World Cup winner Germany was first ahead of runner-up Argentina, then Colombia. Two-time defending European champion Spain slipped two places. Belgium's rise coincided with the Netherlands going from fourth to fifth after losing Euro 2016 qualifiers to the Czech Republic and Iceland.
Soccer-Asian Champions League finals
Oct 23 (Reuters) - Previous results from Asian Champions League finals: 2013 - Guangzhou Evergrande (China) beat FC Seoul (South Korea) 3-3 on away goals 2012 - Ulsan Hyundai (South Korea) beat Al-Ahli Sports Club (Saudia Arabia) 3-0 2011 - Al-Sadd Sports Club (Qatar) beat Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors (South Korea) 2-2 (4-2 on penalties) 2010 - Seongnam Ilhwa Chuma (South Korea) beat Zob Ahan FC (Iran) 3-1 2009 - Pohang Steelers (South Korea) beat Al-Ittihad FC (Saudi Arabia) 2-1 2008 - Gamba Osaka (Japan) beat Adelaide United (Australia) 5-0 on aggregrate 2007 - Urawa Red Diamonds (Japan) beat ...