Archive | April 22, 2015

Guardiola faces T-shirt sanction by UEFA….

Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola

Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola faces disciplinary charges from Uefa after wearing a T-shirt in support of a dead journalist at a recent news conference. Guardiola wore a t-shirt bearing #JusticiaParaTopo during his pre-match meeting with the media before Bayern’s Champions League win against Porto. The message relates to an Argentine journalist – Topo Lopez – who died at the World Cup last year. Initially, it was reported that it was an accident, but now there is a campaign underway because some suspect he was murdered.

John ‘Shoes’ Moshoeu: Exit of an ex Bafana Bafana captain….

John 'Shoes' Moshoeu

Former South Africa captain John ‘Shoes’ Moshoeu has died aged 49. Moshoeu had been suffering from stomach cancer and lost his battle against the disease on Tuesday. The midfielder won 73 caps and will be particularly remembered for starring in Bafana Bafana’s 1996 Africa Cup of Nations-winning team. Moshoeu’s career began in 1987 with local side Giant Blackpool and he went on to play for eight other teams including Kaizer Chiefs and Turkish giants Fenerbahce. He first played for South Africa in 1993 – a year after their return from a decades-long ban because of apartheid – and, incredibly, he was still part of the Bafana Bafana team at the 2004 Nations Cup at the age of 38. Moshoeu carried on playing professionally for four more years before finally hanging up his boots when he was 42. Moshoeu played with our own Austin JayJay Okocha at Fenerbahce and took over Okocha’s number 10 jersey when JayJay moved to PSG.

Toure hints at new challenge….

Yaya Toure: Open to new challenges

Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure says no amount of money could convince him to remain at a club where he felt he no longer belonged. Toure’s future has been the subject of increased speculation in recent months, with former City boss Roberto Mancini making no secret of his desire to try to lure the Ivorian to Inter Milan this summer. And Toure, who turns 32 next month, insists he is not motivated by money and remains open to new challenges.

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Zidane talks up Chelsea’s Hazard….

Zinedine Zidane

Zinedine Zidane (pictured above), who has been tipped to take over in the Real Madrid dugout from his current role of reserve team coach, says that he rates Chelsea’s Eden Hazard (pictured below) alongside Real’s Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona’s Lionel Messi. “They’re fantastic players, but I like Eden Hazard a lot too,” he told Fifa. “I enjoy everything he does on the pitch. I like the way he carries himself, that decisive streak in him and the fact that he’s improving every year. “He can still get better too, and I think he’s a big reason why Chelsea are on top of the table.”

Zlatan admits inferiority….

Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Xavi

Paris St Germain striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic was philosophical after suffering Champions League quarter-final defeat to his former club Barcelona last night. “Let’s be realistic, they were better than us. They will probably win the Champions League,” Ibrahimovic admitted. “As far as we are concerned, it is not possible to reach that goal in the short term. “Let’s not lie to ourselves, it’s just reality.”

Halsey criticises FA Cup final ref….

Former Premier League referee Mark Halsey (pictured) has criticised the appointment of Jon Moss to officiate the FA Cup final. “Seriously, Jon Moss at Wembley? I can’t be having that,” he wrote on social media: “He’s made too many high profile mistakes this season already. Even last weekend he missed two blatant penalties, one for Palace and one for West Brom.” “I reckon we’ll be a laughing stock around the world.”

IAAF wants to double Jeptoo drugs ban….

 Rita Jeptoo

Athletics’ governing body has asked sport’s highest court to double Rita Jeptoo’s two-year doping ban. But the Kenyan athlete has filed an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) seeking to overturn her punishment for failing a drugs test. Jeptoo, 34, became Kenya’s first high-profile athlete to fail a test when she tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs in September. Athletics Kenya have suspended her from all competition until October 2016. CAS has said the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) wants a four-year ban because of “aggravating circumstances”. But Jeptoo, who says she may have been prescribed some banned substances at a local hospital after a road accident, is seeking a delay in the ban’s implementation and hopes to compete in August’s World Championships.

Neymar double sees off PSG….

Neymar celebrates scoring against PSG

Neymar’s two goals saw Barcelona coast past Paris St-Germain and into a third successive Champions League semi-final. PSG, needing to overhaul a 3-1 deficit from the first leg, were torn apart by a dazzling Andres Iniesta run and assist for Neymar to score the first. The Brazilian striker headed in his second before the break to open up a four-goal aggregate lead. And Barca were rarely troubled in the second half as they pursue a first Champions League title since 2011. Iniesta’s mesmerising skill for the opening goal will be remembered as one of the Champions League’s great assists, and it was indicative of Barca’s superiority over the two legs. The Spanish World Cup winner collected the ball in his own half, before jinking past three PSG players, moving up the pitch and slipping the ball to Neymar, who easily eluded David Luiz and rounded keeper Salvatore Sirigu. Barcelona’s second was more straightforward, as Dani Alves hooked in a left-footed cross from the right and Neymar was gifted all the space he needed to flick in his 30th goal of the season.

Coach Guardiola tore apart his trousers as Bayern tore apart Porto….

Pep Guardiola

Bayern Munich put in a devastating first-half performance to overcome a first-leg deficit and beat Porto 6 – 1 (7-4 aggregate) to reach the Champions League semi-finals. Needing a 2-0 win, Bayern were level on aggregate within 22 minutes thanks to Thiago and Jerome Boateng headers. Robert Lewandowksi put them further ahead and Thomas Muller drove home for 4-0 before Lewandowski added a second. Jackson Martinez gave Porto some hope, but Ivan Marcano was sent off, with Xabi Alonso scoring from the free-kick. The result was a boost to the reputation of Bayern boss Pep Guardiola, who was in danger of suffering a Champions League humbling for a second consecutive season. Since the Spaniard took over the reigning European champions from Jupp Heynckes in 2013, they have dominated in the Bundesliga, losing only four of 63 games.

Champions League results….

Tuesday 21 April 2015:

Barcelona 2 – 0 Paris St Germain  (Aggregate: 5 – 1)

Bayern Munich 6 – 1 FC Porto (Aggregate: 7 – 4)

Wednesday 22 April 2015:

Monaco 0 – 0 Juventus (Aggregate: 0 – 1)

Real Madrid 1 – 0 Atl Madrid (Aggregate: 1 – 0)