Archive | July 17, 2016

Emanuele Giaccherini joins Napoli….

Emanuele Giaccherini

Sunderland and Italy winger Emanuele Giaccherini has joined Napoli on a three-year deal for an undisclosed fee. Giaccherini, 31, joined the Black Cats in 2013 from Juventus for £6.5m but, after an impressive first season, he struggled to make an impact. He played 43 times in total for the club, scoring five goals, but spent last season on loan at Serie A Bologna. The Italian has 29 international caps and scored the Azzurri’s opening goal of Euro 2016 against Belgium.

Football Club director found dead at ground….

Colin Taylor

The managing director of Oxford City Football Club has been found dead at the team’s ground. The body of Colin Taylor was discovered by a member of the public at about 9:20 am at the Marsh Lane site in Marston. Thames Valley Police said his death was not thought to be suspicious and a file was being prepared for the coroner. In a statement the club said: “Our thoughts and prayers are with Colin’s family and friends at this time.” It said the directors of the club made the announcement with the “deepest sadness”. Chairman Brian Cox, who had been friends with Mr Taylor for more than 25 years, said he was “shocked” by the news.

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Tomas Berdych pulls out of Olympic Games….

Tomas Berdych

World number eight Tomas Berdych has pulled out of next month’s Olympic Games in Rio because of concerns about the Zika virus. Berdych, 30, lost in the Wimbledon semi-final to eventual winner Andy Murray earlier this month. “It was a hard decision for me to take after a long and painstaking discussion with my dearest,” said Berdych. The Czech is the third tennis player after Simona Halep and Milos Raonic to withdraw from the Olympics. More than 20 male players have withdrawn from the golf competition at Rio 2016, with many concerned about the mosquito-borne virus Zika, which is linked to brain deformities in newborn babies. Berdych said on Twitter: “It is purely my personal decision but I still feel a need to give at least one of the serious reasons leading to this step to my supporters and fans. “It is because of the Zika virus spread in the country of the Olympics. As I have founded a family recently, to limit health risks towards my nearest is the utmost priority. “I apologise to all of you who are disappointed by my decision. I do believe that if you take a deeper account of my reasons you will understand that I have done it out of the responsibility for my family.” The United States’ John Isner has pulled out to focus on his preparations for tour events, while Nick Kyrgios will not be involved because of a dispute with the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC).

Arjen Robben out for six weeks….

Arjen Robben

Bayern Munich winger Arjen Robben could miss the start of the season after being ruled out for six weeks with an adductor muscle injury. The 32-year-old Dutchman missed the last two months of 2015-16 with a similar injury and pulled up in their pre-season opener against fifth-tier Lippstadt. He only made 15 Bundesliga appearances last season. Bayern face Borussia Dortmund in the German Super Cup on 14 August. The German champions’ league opener is against Werder Bremen on 26 August.

Eto’o charity match in Turkey postponed until further notice….

Samuel Eto'o

Cameroon legend Samuel Eto’o announced that a charity match on Saturday in the Turkish city of Antalya – aimed at raising money for his foundation – was postponed until further notice following an attempted coup in the country. A number of football stars were already in Antalya to support Eto’o, who currently plays for Turkish side Antalyaspor, including Nigeria’s Kanu Nwankwo and Jay-Jay Okocha, Ghana’s Stephen Appiah and Michael Essien and Ivory Coast’s Kolo Toure. Ghana-born Marcel Desailly, Carles Puyol, Deco and former England manager Fabio Capello were also there for the game between a World Stars side and Turkey Stars team which had been organised to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the Fundación Privada Samuel Eto’o in Turkey.

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N’Golo Kante joins Chelsea….

Chelsea have signed Leicester City midfielder N’Golo Kante on a five-year deal for a fee believed to be in the region of £30m. The defensive midfielder joined from Caen last summer for £6m and went on to make 40 appearances in Leicester’s Premier League-winning campaign. Kante, 25, was part of the France squad that reached the final of Euro 2016. “I am so happy to have signed for one of the biggest clubs in Europe. It’s a dream come true for me,” he said. Kante is Chelsea’s second signing of the summer after Belgian striker Michy Batshuayi joined from Marseille. “The opportunity to work with Antonio Conte, a brilliant coach, and some of the best players in the world was simply too good to turn down,” said Kante.