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Football «TheGuardian»

Sun, 20 May 2018 11:00:55 GMT
Milan’s Suso: ‘I feel like I am only at 70% of what I can achieve’
The forward talks about the shock of arriving in England as a 16-year-old, having Gennaro Gattuso as his manager and playing for Liverpool again one day

When Suso arrived in Italy to sign for Milan, in January 2015, there were no fans or journalists at Malpensa airport to greet him. He was a virtual stranger, a low-key signing for a club that were no longer able to reach the heights of previous decades.

The Spaniard cost Milan


Sun, 20 May 2018 09:30:53 GMT
‘I don’t feel like an underdog’: J

Sun, 20 May 2018 07:00:51 GMT
Thibaut Courtois stands tall to grant Antonio Conte a glorious swansong | David Hytner

Gutsy backs-to-the-wall show delivers a triumphant end to Italian’s stormy season – and perhaps his Chelsea tenure

Antonio Conte remained in a state of agitation. The Chelsea manager had seen Eden Hazard put his team in charge of the FA Cup final with a first-half penalty but he did not celebrate. Instead, he continued to chew the ear of the fourth official, Lee Mason. Conte wanted a red card to be shown to the Manchester United defender Phil Jones, for what he felt had been a last-man foul on Hazard.

It seemed to sum up what has been a slog of a season for Conte – even at the good moments, he could have gripes. It has had the feel of one long argument between him and the club and there was the unmistakable end-of-era impression for him at Wembley.

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Sun, 20 May 2018 08:30:52 GMT
Said & Done 2017-18 awards: Banter, dinosaurs, and a good boy led astray

Also featuring: Owen Oyston, Sam Allardyce, and a sausage dog’s fresh start

Martin Glenn – hiring Lingerie League promoter @fizzer18 as England Women’s manager in January, and comparing the Star of David to the swastika in March. His FA focus for next season: to keep on “uniting the game – and making English football better for all”.

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Sat, 19 May 2018 21:29:38 GMT
England youngsters in ‘matches that matter’ have Southgate looking up | Jacob Steinberg

With English players prominent in the Premier League and Liverpool storming to the Champions League final, Gareth Southgate is cheerful about England’s future prospects

Sometimes managers pepper their answers with cliches just to get to the end of a press conference. Yet Gareth Southgate is not being flippant when he responds to a question about the Champions League final by emphasising how Liverpool will be representing England when they face Real Madrid in Kiev on Saturday. With the World Cup looming large, England’s manager makes no attempt to play down the significance of Liverpool’s progress under J


Sat, 19 May 2018 20:41:45 GMT
Antonio Conte: ‘I showed in a difficult season that I’m a serial winner’

• Chelsea manager issues ‘back me or sack me’ message
• ‘If they want to continue to work with me, they know me‘

Antonio Conte warned Chelsea they would be losing a “serial winner” if they chose to sack him and said that, whatever the future might hold, he would always love the club.

Conte watched his team dig out a 1-0 win against Manchester United in the FA Cup final to finish a trying season on a high. The trophy followed his Premier League title success from last season – his first at Stamford Bridge.

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Sat, 19 May 2018 21:54:16 GMT
Eintracht Frankfurt deny Bayern Munich the double in DFB-Pokal final

• Game was Eintracht manager’s last before taking over at Bayern
• Real Madrid finish third in La Liga after draw with Villarreal

Niko Kovac left Eintracht Frankfurt the perfect parting gift with victory against his future employers Bayern Munich in the DFB-Pokal final. Kovac delivered the cup, and with it European football next season, in his final game in charge before replacing Jupp Heynckes as Bayern manager this summer as Frankfurt won 3-1 in Berlin.

Ante Rebic scored either side of Robert Lewandowski’s equaliser, with his second goal after 82 minutes surviving a VAR check by the referee after Bayern appealed for a handball in the build-up. That was not the end of the replay drama, however, as Frankfurt survived another review in injury time when the referee decided that Kevin-Prince Boateng’s kick on Javi Mart


Sat, 19 May 2018 18:14:00 GMT
Chelsea’s Eden Hazard spot-on to sink Manchester United and win FA Cup

If this turns out to be Antonio Conte’s final game as Chelsea manager – and who could really be surprised if they do part ways? – at least he has gone out on a high. For all the problems, the unending politics and the clear impression of a manager who knows his time is up, another trophy has been added to the collection. Last year, the Premier League, this season, the FA Cup; only at Chelsea, perhaps, could a manager with that return now be cut loose.

It is an eccentric twist bearing in mind Chelsea have just won the eighth FA Cup of their history, moving joint third with Tottenham on the all-time list. But this can be an unorthodox club, and who can possibly say the boom-and-bust policy does not work when Chelsea, on Roman Abramovich’s watch, have accumulated so much silverware? This was the 15th trophy of the Abramovich era – and that is not even using the Jos


Sat, 19 May 2018 15:55:22 GMT
Callum McGregor goal helps Celtic to Scottish Cup final win over Motherwell

The conclusion to a second season at Celtic for Brendan Rodgers delivered the manager’s finest moment. If Rodgers was not revered by Celtic’s followers before, he will be now. This now famous Celtic side, under the guidance of the 45-year-old, has marched into the history books – again and with consummate ease.

Jock Stein could not return successive domestic trebles when in charge of Celtic. Neither could Martin O’Neill. No Scottish side had achieved back-to-back clean sweeps until this sunny afternoon on Glasgow’s south side, when Motherwell were left chasing shadows. Sometimes football really is blissfully simple; this encounter perfectly encapsulated what should happen when a dominant force meets the side who finished seventh in the top flight. Any sense that Celtic’s support are growing bored by their monopoly was undermined by the scale – and sound – of their celebrations here.

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Sat, 19 May 2018 21:06:57 GMT
Leicester agree deal to sign Portugal defender Ricardo Pereira

• Porto player, 24, will join on five-year deal
• Pereira has previously played under Claude Puel on loan at Nice

Leicester have agreed a deal for the Porto defender Ricardo Pereira, who will move to the King Power Stadium on a five-year contract once the transfer window opens formally on 9 June.

The 24-year-old, who has been named in the Portugal squad for the World Cup this summer, was in Leicester on Saturday to finalise personal terms and complete a medical. He spent time on loan at Nice when Claude Puel was in charge there.

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Sat, 19 May 2018 20:49:25 GMT
Marcus Rashford’s toils show up Jos

Sat, 19 May 2018 16:51:58 GMT
Buffon given emotional send-off by Juventus as Parma return to Serie A
• Tearful Buffon given guard of honour during win over Verona
• Parma return to Italian top flight three years after bankruptcy

Gianluigi Buffon made his emotional farewell to Juventus on Saturday, marking his 640th and last Serie A appearance for the club with another victory.

Buffon, who announced on Thursday he would be ending his 17-year spell in Turin, helped the champions finish the season with a 2-1 win over relegated Verona.

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Sat, 19 May 2018 11:01:25 GMT
Manchester City seek to salvage season with Champions League place

In April Nick Cushing’s charges were on course for the treble of WSL, FA Cup and Champions League. A few weeks later and securing second place is all that remains open to them

When Manchester City announced that their women’s team would be embarking on a ground-breaking tour of the United States this summer a glorious treble remained within the grasp of Nick Cushing’s side.

It was April and optimism at the Etihad Campus, where Cushing’s players share many facilities with Pep Guardiola’s Premier League champions, was high. Then the setbacks began. First, City lost an FA Cup semi-final to Emma Hayes’s Chelsea and then Lyon knocked them out at the same stage of the Champions League, before Hayes’s team clinched the Women’s Super League title.

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Fri, 18 May 2018 22:22:23 GMT
Notts County furious over key decisions as Coventry reach play-off final

Maxime Biamou was the hero as Coventry booked their place in the League Two play-off final after a 4-1 win at Notts County that left the home side’s manager, Kevin Nolan, raging over key decisions.

Biamou scored once in each half – the first goal from a spectacular overhead kick after six minutes – to confirm Coventry will face Exeter at Wembley following their 5-2 aggregate win.

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Fri, 18 May 2018 18:49:00 GMT
Manuel Pellegrini favourite to succeed David Moyes at West Ham
• Chilean due in London for talks with David Sullivan
• Pellegrini led Manchester City to 2014 Premier League title

Manuel Pellegrini is the favourite to succeed David Moyes as manager of West Ham United, with the club expected to make an announcement on their chosen candidate next week.

Pellegrini, who led Manchester City to the Premier League title in 2014 and is in charge at Hebei China Fortune, is due in London for talks with David Sullivan, the West Ham co-chairman.

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Fri, 18 May 2018 14:50:18 GMT
Frank de Boer and Graham Potter lead race to take Swansea manager’s job
• Carlos Carvalhal’s departure confirmed after relegation
• De Boer has been out of work since sacking by Crystal Palace

Graham Potter and Frank de Boer are the leading candidates to take over at Swansea as the Welsh club look to appoint their fifth permanent manager in two years following confirmation that Carlos Carvalhal has departed in the wake of relegation.

Related: There is more to lament about fallen Swansea than relegation | David Conn

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Fri, 18 May 2018 14:59:51 GMT
QPR appoint Steve McClaren as new manager on two-year contract
• 57-year-old ‘excited by challenge’ after replacing Ian Holloway
• McClaren’s most recent role was in Israel with Maccabi Tel-Aviv

Queens Park Rangers have appointed Steve McClaren as manager in place of Ian Holloway, sacked after the club finished 16th in the Championship.

McClaren has agreed a two-year contract at Loftus Road, having briefly worked at QPR as a first-team coach with Harry Redknapp in 2013. The 57-year-old has been away from English football since leaving Derby in March last year, with his last role as a consultant for Maccabi Tel-Aviv in Israel.

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Fri, 18 May 2018 13:00:51 GMT
Michel Platini says 1998 World Cup draw ‘trickery’ led to France v Brazil final
• Hosts were allocated to Group C and avoided Brazil until final
• ‘France-Brazil was the dream final ... there was a little trickery’

Michel Platini, the former Uefa president, has claimed “a little trickery” was used in the 1998 World Cup draw to increase the chances of France and Brazil meeting in the final.

Platini is serving a four-year ban from involvement in football – reduced twice from an original eight-year sanction – after he was found guilty of receiving a “disloyal payment” from the then-Fifa president Sepp Blatter.

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Fri, 18 May 2018 14:18:33 GMT
Paul Lambert leaves position as Stoke City manager after relegation
• Scot unable to stop club being relegated to Championship
• David Moyes and Sam Allardyce linked with vacancy

Paul Lambert has left his position as Stoke City manager by mutual consent, the club has announced.

The Scot replaced Mark Hughes at the bet365 Stadium in January with the brief of keeping the club in the Premier League. Stoke were 18th at the time and ultimately they finished one place lower and were relegated to the Championship having won only once under Lambert.

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Sat, 19 May 2018 08:00:24 GMT
Per Mertesacker: ‘As Arsenal academy manager I will challenge the players’ mindsets’

In an exclusive extract from his new book, the former defender explains what he learned during his career and how footballers must do more to condition their bodies

I invested a lot in my fitness. My personal network [of therapists] cost me 10% of my net salary, several hundreds of thousands of euros. But it was absolutely the right decision and it paid off as after two seasons I extended my contract by a further three years. I wouldn’t have been able to play for a top club for seven years in the Premier League without these additional therapies.

Related: Per Mertesacker: ‘Some fans want a selfie but sometimes I want to say: Let’s just shake hands’

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Sat, 19 May 2018 10:00:17 GMT
World Cup stunning moments: Frank Rijkaard and Rudi V

Fri, 18 May 2018 10:59:56 GMT
Bojan Krkic: ‘I had anxiety attacks but no one wants to talk about that. Football’s not interested’
The forward, who scored 900 goals for Barcelona’s youth teams and was labelled the ‘new Messi’, opens up on how the huge expectations affected him

“I have a problem,” Bojan Krkic says, edging forward on the sofa. “I love football, it’s my life.” Outside, through the balcony doors, the sun dips behind Vitoria, northern Spain.

His homeland is one of five countries in which he has played. He started at Barcelona, where he became their youngest player to make a league debut, and then had spells at Roma, Milan and Ajax. He joined Stoke in 2014 before loans at Mainz and now Alav


Fri, 18 May 2018 17:00:04 GMT
Pakistan captain Hajra Khan: ‘It’s changing. Slowly, but it’s changing’ | Geneva Abdul

The captain of the Pakistan women’s team is challenging preconceptions in her homeland and beyond as she leads a fight for equality and recognition

Karachi is the capital of the province of Sindh, the most populous city in Pakistan and among the biggest in the world. Bordering the Arabian Sea, it is home to more than 21 million people.

Here football is the opiate of the people. It comes as no surprise that Hajra Khan first played outside her home with other children, keeping goal in a net chalked out against a neighbouring wall. However, it was not until she was 14, preoccupied with basketball and track and field, that her mother came across football tryouts in the local Sunday paper and told her to give it a shot.

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Thu, 17 May 2018 19:00:48 GMT
Ars

Tue, 15 May 2018 13:07:00 GMT
Premier League 2017-18 review: what we learned tactically from the season | Jonathan Wilson
As the gulf grows between rich and poor clubs so, too, does a culture in which some teams enter games accepting the only way they can compete is by not competing

Tactics are always contingent, never discreet. No manager can ever casually decide how he will play and only then turn to his squad and decide how best to array his resources within the system he has selected, before finally paying attention to the situation and the opposition. Everything is inter


Tue, 15 May 2018 16:43:34 GMT
How much do you know about the Premier League 2017-18 season? – quiz

Who kept losing? Who was proud? Who was ‘the manager of the year’?

In which month did Crystal Palace score their first goal of the season?

August

September

October

November

Who were the only team to win the majority of their points away from home?

Burnley

Manchester City

Tottenham Hotspur

West Bromwich Albion

Which goalkeeper made one save in the league last season and 111 this season?

Asmir Begovic

Loris Karius

Wayne Hennessey

Willy Caballero

Tottenham finished the season as the highest placed team from London. Who was their manager when they last achieved that feat?

Gerry Francis

Martin Jol

Juande Ramos

Harry Redknapp

Nine clubs changed their managers during the season. Which of them brought in a permanent replacement with no previous experience of managing in England?

Crystal Palace

Leicester City

Everton

West Ham United

West Bromwich Albion

Swansea City

Stoke City

Watford

Southampton

Who did Jos


Tue, 15 May 2018 09:20:45 GMT
Premier League 2017-18 review: our predictions versus cold, hard reality

Burnley, Huddersfield and Brighton to be relegated? It felt like the right answer at the time

Every year we step up and make bold predictions about the Premier League season and every year we are proved a little bit right and more than a little bit wrong. Burnley, Huddersfield and Brighton fans, we apologise. Manchester City fans, we told you so.

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Mon, 14 May 2018 07:32:04 GMT
Premier League 2017-18 review: player of the season

From Mohamed Salah to Kevin De Bruyne, via some delightful players elsewhere in the division

Welcome to theguardian.com review of the 2017-18 Premier League season. We have nominated some contenders for this category but this is just to get the discussion going: offer your suggestions below the line …

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Mon, 14 May 2018 08:50:23 GMT
Premier League 2017-18 review: goal of the season

From a 60-yard Wayne Rooney belter, to a sublime Jamie Vardy volley, here are some of our favourite strikes this season

Welcome to theguardian.com review of the 2017-18 Premier League season. We have nominated some contenders for this category but this is just to get the discussion going: offer your suggestions below the line …

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Mon, 14 May 2018 11:30:27 GMT
Premier League 2017-18 review: flop of the season

From Stoke to Alan Pardew, via Ars


Mon, 14 May 2018 10:50:26 GMT
Premier League 2017-18 review: signing of the season

From Liverpool’s Egyptian wizard, to an


Mon, 14 May 2018 08:10:23 GMT
Premier League 2017-18 review: manager of the season

Sean Dyche, David Wagner and Roy Hodgson have worked commendably, but it’s hard to look beyond the title winner

Welcome to theguardian.com review of the 2017-18 Premier League season. We have nominated some contenders for this category but this is just to get the discussion going: offer your suggestions below the line …

While compelling arguments can be made for awarding a number of different bosses the accolade of manager of the season, it would seem churlish to overlook the man who masterminded one team’s canter to the title. The choreographer of some of the most breathtaking football ever witnessed in the English top flight, Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City didn’t so much play, as perform what often appeared to be a completely different sport to many of their comparatively clod-hopping rivals.

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Mon, 14 May 2018 09:30:24 GMT
Premier League 2017-18 review: match of the season

United delaying City’s title celebrations and ‘a historical game you will talk about in 20 years’ both feature

Welcome to theguardian.com review of the 2017-18 Premier League season. We have nominated some contenders for this category but this is just to get the discussion going: offer your suggestions below the line …

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Mon, 14 May 2018 10:10:25 GMT
Premier League 2017-18 review: young player of the season

Man City, Liverpool and Spurs all gave youth a chance to telling effect but there were plenty more young pretenders

Welcome to theguardian.com review of the 2017-18 Premier League season. We have nominated some contenders for this category but this is just to get the discussion going: offer your suggestions below the line …

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Mon, 14 May 2018 12:10:27 GMT
Premier League 2017-18 review: gripe of the season

Jos


Mon, 14 May 2018 12:50:28 GMT
Premier League 2017-18 review: pundit of the season

A ‘golden generation’ new boy, an old curmudgeon and a flat-capped up-and-comer head our picks of the campaign

Related: Premier League 2017-18 review: flop of the season

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Sat, 19 May 2018 23:03:53 GMT
'I'm a serial winner,' says Antonio Conte after FA Cup triumph – video

Following their 1-0 win over Manchester United in the FA Cup final, Chelsea manager Antonio Conte defended himself against criticism of their poor performance in the Premier League by calling himself a "serial winner". Eden Hazard scored the only goal of the game, a tense affair which United manager Jos


Fri, 18 May 2018 14:30:16 GMT
Carlos Carvalhal best Swansea City quotes: 'Sardines can become sea bass'– video

Carlos Carvalhal's tenure as Swansea City manager has come to an end after they were relegated from the Premier League. However, the Portuguese manager has always been creative with his words, providing us with some wonderful moments throughout the season. From sea bass to rock 'n' roll, here are Carvalhal's best bits


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Thu, 17 May 2018 17:30:05 GMT
Gianluigi Buffon to leave Juventus after 17 years – video

Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon is to leave Juventus after a highly successful 17-year relationship with the club. After his last match this Saturday he will evaluate the ‘proposals and inspiring challenges’ he has received and will next week decide the next step in his career.

Gianluigi Buffon to leave Juventus but is considering ‘interesting proposals’

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Thu, 17 May 2018 14:33:28 GMT
Gareth Southgate leaves England door open for Joe Hart – video

England manager Gareth Southgate has addressed the media after his World Cup squad was announced. Southgate praised new call-up Trent Alexander-Arnold and said the door is still open for Joe Hart in future

England’s Southgate praises Alexander-Arnold and offers future hope to Hart

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Wed, 16 May 2018 14:03:47 GMT
Gareth Southgate reveals England squad for Russia World Cup – video

Gareth Southgate has announced the England squad he will lead to Russia in the hunt for World Cup glory. There's a surprising call-up for Trent Alexander-Arnold, the uncapped Liverpool right-back, while Jack Wilshere, Joe Hart and Adam Lallana are notable absences, the latter on the stand-by list. The World Cup starts on 14 June, with England's first game against Tunisia on 18 June.

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Thu, 17 May 2018 11:29:21 GMT
Lionel Messi brings tears of joy to South African Barcelona fan – video

Lionel Messi brought tears of joy to a South African fan after signing his Barcelona shirt. Barcelona won 3-1 a friendly match against South African champions Mamelodi Sundowns in the Mandela Cup. This cup commemorates 100 years since the birth of Nelson Mandela.

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Tue, 19 Dec 2017 11:00:24 GMT
The 100 best footballers in the world 2017

Our panel of 169 experts from 63 nations compile a list of the greatest male players in 2017. Click on an individual to read more about their year.

Messi edges Ronaldo to No1 | The data behind our 100 | Watch: our top 10
Meet our panel of judges for 2017 | 2016 edition | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012

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Thu, 17 May 2018 21:02:19 GMT
Klinsmann says USA could have 'realistically' made World Cup 2018 semi-finals

The United States national team will be watching the World Cup from their living rooms after disastrously failing to qualify for next month’s tournament in Russia, but in the eyes of former manager J


Sun, 20 May 2018 07:32:43 GMT
A-League: Brisbane Strikers withdraw expansion bid amid financial concerns

There are 15 consortium bidding to join the A-League but National Soccer League winners Brisbane Strikers won’t be one of them after pulling out of the expansion process.

The Strikers have withdrawn from the race which will see two teams join the competition next year, citing issues with FFA’s process.

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Wed, 16 May 2018 15:43:21 GMT
World Cup: Argentinian FA sorry for guide on how to talk to Russian women

There are more than a few concerns before next month’s World Cup in Russia: the threat of hooliganism, the country’s patchy record on LGBT rights, and the prospect of Russia playing Vladimir Putin at centre-forward. For officials at Argentina’s Football Association (AFA), however, the most pressing issue appears to be how to talk to women.

On Tuesday, the AFA held a course for players, staff and journalists about what to expect when they travel to Russia. Among the materials was a manual entitled Russian Language and Culture, which included a chapter on “What to do to have a chance with a Russian girl”. Anyone wanting a chance with a Russian man was left to figure things out for themselves.

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Thu, 17 May 2018 00:18:29 GMT
Matildas to begin Tournament of Nations defence against Brazil

The Matildas will open their Tournament of Nations defence against arch-rivals Brazil on 26 July in Kansas City.

US Soccer has confirmed the match dates, locations and kick-off times for the second instalment of the tournament that shot Australia’s women to prominence in its inaugural year.

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Tue, 15 May 2018 20:10:45 GMT
Sporting Lisbon players and staff attacked by intruders at training ground
• Forward Bas Dost and manager, Jorge Jesus, reportedly assaulted
• Around 50 people with faces covered forced their way into training

A group of around 50 people forced their way into Sporting Lisbon’s training centre on Tuesday and assaulted players and staff. The

Portuguese television channel RTP said that around 50 intruders, who had covered their faces to avoid being identified, interrupted team practice and assaulted players and staff. They also caused damage to a changing room.

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Wed, 16 May 2018 16:42:14 GMT

Wed, 16 May 2018 18:00:09 GMT
Women Onside: the group pushing for gender equity in Australian football leadership

FFA must elect a new congress, but no women have been invited onto that working group

Heather Reid was the CEO of the ACT football federation (known as Capital Football) for 12 years. She was the first woman to lead an Australian state football association, and, at the time, she represented 11% of women’s involvement in senior football leadership positions. When she left the job and was replaced by a man, that figure dropped to zero.

“That’s why I don’t like people talking about percentages of gendered representation,” she tells Guardian Australia. “I like to know the real numbers because they tell the true story. So I was one of nine state representatives when I was CEO, and now there’s zero out of nine women [in leadership positions] at the federation level [in Australian football].”

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