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Rekik leaving City for OM

first_imgMarseille have agreed a deal to sign Holland defender Karim Rekik from Manchester City subject to a medical, the Ligue 1 club have announced. No terms of the deal were disclosed. Rekik, a left-sided defender, made his Holland debut in March last year against France, but it remains his only cap to date. Rekik, 20, has made only three appearances for City but earned international recognition during two seasons on loan with PSV Eindhoven, where he also won an Eredivisie title in the season just finished. He previously had stints on loan with Blackburn and Portsmouth. “Olympique de Marseille and Manchester City have reached an agreement in principle for the permanent transfer of Dutch international Karim Rekik on Tuesday evening subject to passing the medical examination,” said a statement on Marseille’s website. center_img Press Associationlast_img read more

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Brazil exorcize Paraguay penalty demons to reach Copa semis

first_imgBrazil’s Gabriel Jesus (second from right) celebrating after scoring his penalty to defeat Paraguay in Porto Alegre, BrazilPorto Alegre, Brazil | AFP |  Gabriel Jesus scored the winning spot-kick in a tense penalty shoot-out as Brazil exorcized their demons to beat Paraguay on Thursday and reach the Copa America semi-finals.Twice before in 2011 and 2015 Paraguay had beaten Brazil at this same stage on penalties at the South American extravaganza.Willian came closest to scoring in normal time for Brazil when he hit the post as Paraguay held out for a 0-0 draw for more than 40 minutes following the dismissal of Fabian Balbuena for a professional foul on Roberto Firmino.Brazilian media had been almost in a state of paranoia before the match recalling the painful memories from Argentina in 2011 and Chile four years later when Paraguay produced stubborn defensive displays before snatching victory in the spot-kick lottery.But it wasn’t to be this time as Brazil goalkeeper Alisson saved Gustavo Gomez’s opening spot-kick at the Gremio Arena in Porto Alegre.Although Firmino dragged his effort wide, Derlis Gonzalez also fired past the post allowing Jesus, who missed a penalty in Brazil’s last match, to be the match-winner.The tournament hosts will face either perennial rivals Argentina or Venezuela in Tuesday’s semi-final in Belo Horizonte.Brazil started brightly and produced a beautiful passing move in the fourth minute as local favorite Everton drove in off the left wing and found Dani Alves on the edge of the area, with the full-back slipping the ball on to Firmino, whose weak shot was straight at goalkeeper Roberto Fernandez.Gremio forward Everton’s popularity was clear in his home stadium as fans wildly cheered his every touch.But the game quickly settled into the expected pattern, with Brazil dominating possession and playing countless passes while a well-drilled Paraguay doggedly held their shape and looked to counter at pace with direct runners.Brazil lacked a cutting edge and even when Philippe Coutinho seemingly played in Firmino behind the defence following a Richard Sanchez mistake, the Liverpool forward was easily muscled off the ball.The best chance of the first quarter fell to Paraguay as Hernan Perez found Gonzalez unmarked at back post but Alisson saved his near post shot.It was turgid fare on offer to the Porto Alegre crowd, who started a slow clap just after the half hour.Brazil reporters had asked coach Tite before the game if he was worried about fouls, which he replied were part of the game. But three Paraguayan players were booked before half-time for overly robust challenges.It wasn’t until five minutes from half time that Coutinho got in behind the defence on the left and fired in a shot from an angle that Fernandez saved comfortably.– Brazil jeered again –Predictably, Brazil were booed off at half-time, for the third time in four matches.Tite wasted no time in making a change, but it was a curious one swapping left-back Felipe Luis for Alex Sandro.Neat interplay saw Firmino tee up Coutinho just outside the box but his precise finish was easily saved again.Brazil had changed tactic and were driving more purposefully at the heart of the defence, with Arthur flashing a shot over the bar.It paid dividends on 54 minutes when Firmino won a free-kick on the edge of the penalty area — overturned from the original decision of a penalty by VAR — and Balbuena was shown a red card for a professional foul.Dani Alves’s fierce low free-kick was deflected wide, though.Brazil started to pull Paraguay’s overworked defenders out of position and Arthur forced Fernandez into a diving save before Jesus dragged an effort wide.With Paraguay unable to pose any threat Tite withdrew his defensive midfielder Allan and threw on winger Willian, with Jesus pushed into the middle alongside Firmino.Almost immediately, Jesus missed a gilt-edged chance from eight yards out before Firmino headed a Marquinhos cross wide.Tite went for broke, bringing on attacking midfielder Lucas Paqueta for full-back Alves and it almost worked but Willian saw his low left foot shot cannon back off the post sending the match into a tense penalty shoot-out.Share on: WhatsApplast_img read more

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Michael Jordan, Charlotte Bobcats make donation to N.C. schools

first_imgCHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP)—Michael Jordan and his Bobcats NBA team donated $250,000 to middle-school athletics programs in Charlotte, North Carolina’s largest city.The Charlotte Observer says the NBA hall-of-famer and North Carolina native announced the gift Monday.Jordan, who made a fortune playing in the NBA and marketing his image as one of the world’s best-known athletes, talked about being a contributor to the Charlotte community when he bought the Bobcats this spring.Charlotte schools cut $1.25 million from athletics programs this year and school officials announced a plan to charge students $50 for middle-schoolers and $100 high-schoolers who play.“Our basketball team today planted roots deeply in our community,” Mayor Anthony Foxx said. “Michael Jordan knows from his own experience there are kids who accessed education by the hook of sports. It’s not just the athletic competition that a gift like this allows. It’s also the engagement in the classroom it enables.”last_img read more

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Mickelson says he’s cooperating in trading probe

first_imgPhil Mickelson adjust his hat as he walks off the first tee during the third round of the Memorial golf tournament Saturday, May 31, 2014, in Dublin, Ohio. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)DUBLIN, Ohio (AP) — Hall of Fame golfer Phil Mickelson confirmed that FBI agents investigating insider trading approached him this week at the Memorial Tournament. The five-time major champion said Saturday he has done “absolutely nothing wrong.”A federal official briefed on the investigation told The Associated Press the FBI and Securities and Exchange Commission are analyzing trades Mickelson and Las Vegas gambler Billy Walters made involving Clorox at the same time activist investor Carl Icahn was attempting to take over the company.The official was unauthorized to speak about the ongoing investigation and spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity. Reports of the investigation appeared in several newspapers, including the Wall Street Journal.Smiling as he stood before a room packed with reporters and cameras, Mickelson said the investigation had not been a distraction until FBI agents approached him after his opening round Thursday. He did not offer any other details, including his relationship with Walters or any stock advice he might have received.He said it would not affect his preparations for the U.S. Open in two weeks, the only major he lacks for the career Grand Slam.“It’s not going to change the way I carry myself,” Mickelson said after an even-par 72 at Muirfield Village left him far behind the leaders. “Honestly, I’ve done nothing wrong. I’m not going to walk around any other way.”The federal official told the AP that Mickelson and Walters placed their trades about the same time in 2011. Federal investigators are looking into whether Icahn shared information of his takeover attempt of Clorox with Walters, and whether Walters passed that information to Mickelson.The New York offices of the U.S. Attorney and the FBI declined to comment.The newspaper reports said federal officials also were examining trades by Mickelson and Walters involving Dean Foods Co. in 2012.After a brief interview, Mickelson stepped outside and signed autographs for about 20 minutes, like it was any other day at a tournament. Fans were supportive as ever on the golf course, and Mickelson gave away so many golf balls to children and his caddie asked a tour official to retrieve more balls from his locker when they reached the turn.He had released a statement early Saturday, and said that he wouldn’t release details.“I can’t really go into much right now, but as I said in my statement, I have done absolutely nothing wrong,” Mickelson said. “And that’s why I’ve been fully cooperating with the FBI agents, and I’m happy to do in the future, too, until this gets resolved.”He declined to answer questions about his relationship with Walters, who owns several golf courses. And when asked whether Walters advised him to invest in Clorox or Dean Foods, Mickelson matter-of-factly replied to a Wall Street Journal reporter, “You should know. You wrote the article.”Icahn, 78, is one of Wall Street’s most successful corporate raiders, famous for buying stock in underperforming companies, pressuring them to reform and selling out for a fat profit. In recent years, his targets have included Apple Inc., eBay and Dell Inc. His efforts have made him one of America’s richest people: Forbes magazine puts his net worth at more than $20 billion, making him the 18th-wealthiest American.In the 1980s, he pioneered so-called greenmail raids in which financiers threatened companies with hostile takeovers unless they were paid a premium to go away.Walters is a legendary figure in sports betting circles, widely feared by sports book operators as one of the few people who can consistently win. He’s bet millions on Super Bowls alone, and told “60 Minutes” in a 2011 profile that he has never had a losing year. An early user of computer data, Walters was one of the few bettors whose opinion was so respected that he could move point spreads if it was known what side he was betting on.Walters and a group of bettors dubbed The Computer Group were indicted in the mid-1980s for running what prosecutors said was a bookmaking operation, but were acquitted at trial. Walters was also indicted on money laundering charges in 1998 and had $2.8 million in cash confiscated from a safe deposit box, but the charges were later dismissed and the money returned.Walters was also a high stakes gambler on the golf course, regularly playing celebrities or PGA Tour pros for cash. He told Golf Digest that he once lost a $2 million bet and once made a 40-foot putt worth $400,000. Walters teamed up with touring pro partner Fredrik Jacobson to win the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am by 10 strokes in 2008 while playing as an 11 handicap.Walters also owns golf courses and auto dealerships. Politically connected in Las Vegas, Walters is also known for his philanthropy, particularly toward Opportunity Village, which trains developmentally disabled adults.Mickelson, 43, was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2011. He goes to the U.S. Open next month in North Carolina with a chance to become only the sixth golfer to capture all four major championships. He has not won since the British Open last summer in Scotland.Mickelson has long had a reputation to gamble, though he has said he scaled back his habit after his son, Evan, was born in 2003 following a troublesome pregnancy. The most publicized payoff was when Mickelson and friends won $560,000 on a preseason bet (28-1 odds) that the Baltimore Ravens would win the 2001 Super Bowl.On the golf course, he has a long history of playing money games during the practice rounds. He occasionally gets a group of players and caddies together for dinner and small wagering during the NBA and NHL playoffs, and prominent fights.A year ago, Mickelson was criticized for public comments that tax increases in California kept him from being part of the San Diego Padres’ new ownership group and might cause him to leave his native state. He said his federal and state taxes amount to over 60 percent.___Associated Press writer Tom Hays in New York, Associated Press writers Paul Wiseman and Eric Tucker in Washington, AP Sports Writer Tim Dahlberg in Las Vegas and AP Sports Writer Rusty Miller in Columbus, Ohio, contributed to this report.last_img read more

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Twitter rages as Georgia Bulldogs Todd Gurley suspended indefinitely

first_imgOne of the greatest running backs in the history of the University of Georgia — and by far the best and most explosive college back in America today — has had his gridiron tires flattened by the sharp object on his road to the Heisman Trophy, college football’s highest award.The school administration in Athens, Ga., about an hour east of Atlanta, announced that Gurley has been placed on indefinite suspension until they can gather all information related to an alleged improper benefits situation in exchange for his likeness, the media is reporting.Sources close to the NCAA investigation centers around whether Gurley was given money for autographs or the use of his likeness. University of Georgia officials did not reveal the alleged violation.“I’m obviously very disappointed,” Georgia coach Mark Richt said in a statement. “The important thing for our team is to turn all our attention toward preparation for Missouri.”The Bulldogs, ranked No. 13 Bulldogs (4-1, 2-1 SEC), will face No. 23 Missouri (4-1, 1-0) in a crucial Southeastern Conference Eastern Division game.Gurley leads the Bulldogs with 773 yards rushing and eight touchdowns, averaging 8.2 yards per carry. In addition, he has 11 receptions and a 100-yard kickoff return for a TD. With 3,147 rushing yards, Gurley needs 86 to pass Garrison Hearst for second on the school’s all-time list.The junior established himself as a leading Heisman contender with several signature games and moments, including a school-record 293 all-purpose yards in a season-opening victory over Clemson, not to mention a hurdler-like leap over a Tennessee defender to pick up an extra 10 yards.Twitter went berserk upon digesting this horrific news for the Bulldogs, whose SEC and national championship aspirations were resting mainly on the talented back’s shoulders.Take a look at what some had to say:last_img read more

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Suns 115; Warriors 111: Klay Thompson calls out Warriors fans

first_imgCLICK HERE if you are having a problem viewing the photos on a mobile deviceKlay Thompson subscribes. You can too for just 11 cents a day for 11 months + receive a free Warriors Championship book. Sign me up!OAKLAND – The night began with the Warriors determined they would sharpen their championship habits. The night ended with the Warriors showing some cracks in that championship armor.The Warriors lost to the Phoenix Suns, 115-111, on Sunday at Oracle Arena, snapping an 18-game winning …last_img

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Eddie Howe Sarri is one of worlds best

first_imgBournemouth manager Eddie Howe has hailed Sarri as one of the “best managers in the world” ahead of Saturday’s game at Stamford Bridge.Bournemouth will play Chelsea, who are third in the table and looking for their fourth win in four Premier League games to maintain their 100 per cent record.In the pre-match press conference, Howe said he was so impressed by Sarri’s tactics while he was in charge at Empoli that he travelled to Italy just to meet him.Tammy Abraham, ChelseaChelsea hat-trick hero Tammy Abraham hopes for more Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Tammy Abraham hopes this season will be his big breakthrough at Chelsea after firing his first hat-trick for the club in Saturday’s 5-2 win at Wolves.“I’d heard a lot about his Empoli team and how impressive they were tactically, so I was really keen to go and watch him work, so we made contact with his people and he was kind enough to allow us to come,” Howe told Sky Sports.“I actually don’t remember the year that I went, but I spent a period of time with Maurizio and he was brilliant with me and I learnt so much. It’s no surprise to see that he’s one of the best coaches in the world.“What I saw, I was hugely impressed by and learned a lot from that experience. He brought his Napoli team to play us last year as well – they trained here for a couple of days, we played them and it was great to see him again.”last_img read more

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Time for Tottenham to prove themselves says Ian Wright

first_imgArsenal legend Ian Wright believes the time is right for Tottenham to step up and prove themselves.For the past couple of years, Tottenham have been a title contender, and have won more combined points in the last three seasons that any Premier League club.Ian Wright is eager to see Tottenham be more consistent. Granted Tottenham have a good team, but for 10 years, they have not won a single trophy.“There was a time, four or five years ago, when a Tottenham defeat at Watford would almost have been laughed off as just another example of Spurs “being Spursy”.” Wright wrote on The Sun.“Brilliant one day, going to Manchester United and leaving as comfortable winners. Then getting rolled over by one of the so-called lesser lights.“Only these days the sands have shifted. Expectations have raised and defeats like the one we saw at Vicarage Road on Sunday simply won’t wash any more.“For the Spurs, we have right now is not the Spurs of old. This isn’t a team everyone — including even their own fans — expected to be superb and shocking in equal measure.Christian Eriksen, Tottenham, SpursPochettino: ‘Happy’ Christian Eriksen ready for Spurs action Andrew Smyth – September 12, 2019 Mauricio Pochettino insists Christian Eriksen is “happy” and in the right frame of mind for Tottenham despite his failed summer exit.“This is a team which, rather than trying to force their way among the big guns, have become a prize scalp themselves. A team all opponents now raise their game for.“A team who, barring a small handful of times, will go into every one of their Premier League fixture as favourites.”Tottenham sit 5th in the Premier League table with 9 points after winning 3 matches and losing one.last_img read more