Steven Gerrard has penned a farewell note to Liverpool fans. The Reds’ skipper, writing on the club’s website, said: “Saying goodbye hasn’t been easy. Go on to read the text from the Reds captain in full…
Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez has won the PFA Fans’ Player of the Season award in his first season in England. The Chilean scored 16 goals and provided eight assists in his maiden Premier League campaign, helping the Gunners to a third-place finish. He also assured Arsenal’s place in Saturday’s FA Cup final with two strikes against Reading in April’s semi-final. Sanchez was one of 10 players nominated for the award and triumphed over Chelsea’s Eden Hazard and Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero in a public poll that received over 200,000 votes.
Usain Bolt was an easy winner in his first race of the year in Europe, but failed to break 20 seconds in the 200m at the Golden Spike meet in Ostrava. In wet conditions, Jamaica’s six-time Olympic gold medallist clocked 20.13 seconds – well outside his 19.19 world record – to beat American Isiah Young. “You can’t be satisfied if I don’t break 20 seconds,” said Bolt, 28, who is building up to the World Championships in Beijing in August. Asafa Powell took the 100m in 10.04. The 32-year-old former world record holder was also well off his best pace in the Czech Republic, having clocked 9.84 seconds at the Jamaica International Invitational in Kingston this month. His compatriot Bolt improved on his season’s best of 20.20 for the 200m, set in April in Jamaica, but conceded he was well off where he will need to be by summer. “I just need to try to get myself into running shape,” said Bolt, who won 100m, 200m and sprint relay gold at the 2013 World Championships in Moscow. “I really wanted to [break 20 seconds] but the conditions didn’t allow. And I’m coming back from injuries, so it’s going to take time.”
Two wonder goals from Madagascar continued the giant killing on Monday at the Southern African championship, the Cosafa Cup. Their last-gasp 2-1 victory over Ghana means that there will be a new name on the trophy after Saturday’s final. Mozambique also progressed to the semi-finals by beating Malawi on penalties after a 2-2 draw. On Sunday champions Zambia lost to Namibia and hosts South Africa to Botswana, both games went to penalties. It means Thursday’s semi-finals will see Madagascar will play Namibia and Botswana against Mozambique. The losing teams all drop into the second tier plate competition where Zambia will take on Ghana and South Africa face Malawi on Wednesday. Madagascar humbled guest side Ghana thanks to an extraordinary winner in the last minute of the match at the Royal Bafokeng Sports Palace on Monday night.
This is a picture of the moment when Nigeria and Liverpool forward Asisat Oshoala heard she had been named as the BBC Women’s Footballer of the Year. She beat Veronica Boquete (Spain & FFC Frankfurt); Nadine Kessler (Germany & VFL Wolfsburg); Kim Little (Scotland & Seattle Reign FC) and Marta (Brazil & FC Rosengard) to the award.
We are still celebrating this o!
Six FIFA officials were arrested in Zurich on Wednesday and detained pending extradition to the United States over suspected corruption at football’s governing body FIFA, the Swiss Federal Office of Justice (FCOJ) said in a statement. The New York Times said they were high-ranking FIFA officials and were in Switzerland for the FIFA Congress where incumbent Sepp Blatter faces a challenge from Jordan’s Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein in a presidential election on Friday. “The US authorities suspect them of having received bribes totalling in the USD millions,” said the statement. “The arrest warrants were issued further to a request by the US authorities. The US Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York is investigating these individuals on suspicion of the acceptance of bribes and kick-backs between the early 1990s and the present day. “The bribery suspects — representatives of sports media and sports promotion firms — are alleged to have been involved in schemes to make payments to the football officials — delegates of FIFA and other functionaries of FIFA sub-organizations — totalling more than $100 million. “In return, it is believed that they received media, marketing, and sponsorship rights in connection with football tournaments in Latin America. “According to the US request, these crimes were agreed and prepared in the US, and payments were carried out via US banks. The statement said the detainees would be questioned by Zurich police regarded the U.S. request. “A simplified procedure will apply for wanted persons who agree to their immediate extradition. The Federal Office of Justice (FOJ) can immediately approve their extradition to the US and order its execution. “However, if a wanted person opposes their extradition, the FOJ will invite the US to submit a formal extradition request within the deadline of 40 days specified in the bilateral extradition treaty.”