Phil Neville new England women’s coach

< !DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> London (AFP) – Phil Neville has been appointed head coach of the England women’s team until the end of the 2021 UEFA Women’s Championships, the governing Football Association announced Tuesday. The 41-year-old former Manchester United, Everton and England defender succeeds Mark Sampson, who was sacked in September over allegations of misconduct in a previous role and amid a racism row that led to widespread criticism of senior FA figures. “I am honoured to be given the chance to lead England. With the new coaching team we are putting in place, we can help the players build on their great progress in recent years,” Neville said. England hope to stage the 2021 European Championships, with Neville taking over a team that reached the last four of the 2017 Euros and which is now third in the world rankings, behind only women’s football superpowers the United States and Germany. His appointment is Continue reading "Phil Neville new England women’s coach"

PSG sign ex-Real Madrid midfielder Lassana Diarra

Paris (AFP) – Former Real Madrid and Chelsea midfielder Lassana Diarra has signed for Paris Saint-Germain on Tuesday. The 32-year-old, who has signed a deal until June 2019, has been brought in as cover for Thiago Motta, who is 35 and has recently struggled with injury. “I am extremely happy to finally be able to join my hometown club,” said Diarra to the official PSG website. Diarra, who has won 34 caps for France, was released by  United Arab Emirates club Al Jazira at the end of December. “His experience, both abroad and with the France team, will provide our staff with additional options as we enter an exciting second half of the season,” PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi said in a statement.

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French league ends goal-line technology contract

< !DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> Paris (AFP) – The French league have ended their contract with German company GoalControl after a series of problems with its goal-line technology. The French had suspended use of the system on January 11 after “two serious dysfunctions” in the League Cup.  “Taking account of the numerous anomalies in the GoalControl system, we have agreed to immediately terminate…without further action or compensation from either side,” Didier Quillot, head of the French league wrote in an email on Tuesday to members of the administrative committee. “A call for tenders will be launched in early February to choose a new provider to provide goal-line technology,” Quillot wrote. The contract with GoalControl was due to run until June 2019. Unlike the video assistant referee (VAR), goal-line technology is meant to function automatically when the ball enters the goal, but a former employee of GoalControl told the media in October that the referee’s Continue reading "French league ends goal-line technology contract"

Burnley manager Dyche signs new deal

< !DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> London (AFP) – Burnley manager Sean Dyche has signed a new contract that will keep him at Turf Moor for a further four-and-a-half years, the Premier League club announced on Tuesday. The 46-year-old, in charge of the northwest side since October 2012, is widely regarded as one of the best of the current crop of young English managers along with Bournemouth’s Eddie Howe. Earlier this season, Dyche was linked with the vacancy at Everton after the Toffees sacked Ronald Koeman before veteran former England manager Sam Allardyce took charge at Goodison Park. Tuesday also saw Clarets assistant manager Ian Woan and first-team coach Tony Loughlan sign new deals that will keep them with Burnley until June 2022. “I am quite young in management terms. I am still learning and still improving, I believe, so for my personal reasons, as well, I think it’s the right place to be,” Dyche, who Continue reading "Burnley manager Dyche signs new deal"

Mascherano to leave Barcelona after eight years

< !DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona confirmed on Tuesday that defender Javier Mascherano will leave the club this month, with Spanish media reporting the Argentinian is heading to Hebei China Fortune. The Catalan giants said the 33-year-old would be given an official farewell on Wednesday and say goodbye to fans at Thursday’s Copa del Rey quarter-final, second leg against Espanyol. “Javier Mascherano is leaving FC Barcelona after seven and a half seasons,” the club said on their website. The five-time European champions did not specify where Mascherano was going, but Barcelona sports paper El Mundo Deportivo reported that he will “this Friday become part of the squad of his new club Hebei China Fortune who are doing their pre-season in Marbella (in southern Spain)”. In December, Sport, another Catalan daily, said that Hebei had reached a deal to sign the Argentina international from Barca for 10 million euros ($12.2 million), conditional on the Continue reading "Mascherano to leave Barcelona after eight years"

Robinho signs for Sivasspor despite rape conviction

< !DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> Istanbul (AFP) – Brazil forward Robinho signed on Tuesday with Turkish Super Lig side Sivasspor, the club said, even though he has been sentenced in absentia to nine years in prison in Italy for rape. Sivasspor, based in the city of Sivas in central Anatolia, said the former AC Milan, Real Madrid and Manchester City player signed the one-and-a-half year deal in a ceremony at its stadium after passing a medical. Robinho was found guilty by an Italian court in November of taking part in the gang rape of a 22-year-old Albanian woman in January 2013, when the Brazilian was playing for Milan in Serie A. Robinho insists he is innocent. The sentence is suspended while appeals take place. Sivasspor made no mention of the controversy in its statement. “There is great excitement on social media, on the part of the fans and in the press” over Robinho, club chairman Mecnun Continue reading "Robinho signs for Sivasspor despite rape conviction"

Wenger rules out Arsenal spree despite revenue rise

< !DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> London (AFP) – Ardene Wenger insisted Tuesday there was no chance he would jeopardise Arsenal’s financial stability with lavish spending on new players during the rest of the January transfer window. Monday saw Alexis Sanchez leave the Emirates for Old Trafford in a high-profile swap deal, with Manchester United’s Henrikh Mkhitaryan coming the other way. Wenger, tight-lipped about Arsenal’s prospects of signing Borussia Dortmund striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang during the January transfer window, said Arsenal still faced monetary constraints as a result of moving to the Emirates Stadium back in 2006. “You have not to forget that we have as well financial restrictions from the banks because we have built the stadium,” said Wenger when told Arsenal had spent less on players than other clubs in a Deloitte top 10. “We work very hard to become richer and we achieve it,” the Frenchman, in charge of Arsenal since 1996, added. “If Continue reading "Wenger rules out Arsenal spree despite revenue rise"