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England seek atonement against Costa Rica RIO DE JANEIRO: England return to Belo Horizonte on Tuesday, scene of the country's greatest sporting humiliation, where they will attempt to restore pride against Costa Rica after another chastening World Cup experience.Belo Horizonte's Estadio Independencia provided the setting for England's sensational 1-0 loss to the part-timers of the United States at the 1950 World Cup -- a game latterly dubbed 'The Miracle Match'.Sixty-four years on, England are braced for another day to forget in the city, although with Tuesday's game taking place at the Estadio Mineirao, they will at least be spared a reunion with the ghosts of 1950.Roy Hodgson's side had hoped to be heading into their final Group D fixture vying for a last-16 place, but their tournament is already over after consecutive 2-1 defeats by Italy and Uruguay.Instead, it is Costa Rica who have secured a berth in the knockout phase, thanks to stunning wins over ...

Tired Italy look to avoid more World Cup humiliation NATAL: Four-time champions Italy admitted they are struggling with the weather conditions ahead of their clash with Uruguay in Natal on Tuesday where they will try to avoid being eliminated in the first round at successive World Cups.A win for the South Americans would send Cesare Prandelli's side crashing out at the first hurdle, four years after bowing out at the group stage as then world champions in South Africa.The Azzurri require just a draw ...

Mourning Toure seeks to lead Elephants FORTALEZA: Yaya and Kolo Toure will have to shake off their grief over the death of their brother against Greece on Tuesday as they try to take Ivory Coast into the World Cup knock-out stages.The Premier League pair were dealt a terrible blow with the news that their 28-year-old brother Ibrahim died of cancer in Manchester last week.Just days later, Ivory Coast will take to the field with their World Cup hopes on the line ...

Gervinho - from barefoot student to twinkle-toed winger FORTALEZA: Gervinho's superb individual goal for Ivory Coast in their 2-1 defeat by Colombia marked a remarkable rise from childhood poverty to World Cup star.The 27-year-old twinkle-toed winger -- who had an outstanding season with Roma after a difficult spell with Premier League giants Arsenal -- like a lot of his Ivory Coast team-mates, now enjoying the riches that come with being a top footballer, began in very modest surroundings.He was brought up in the ...

Hodgson mounts defence of England tactics RIO DE JANEIRO: England manager Roy Hodgson says he has no regrets about his team selection at the World Cup despite his side being eliminated after back-to-back defeats by Italy and Uruguay.Former England striker Gary Lineker has asserted that Hodgson "got it wrong" by opting for a 4-2-3-1 formation that saw Liverpool team-mates Steven Gerrard and Jordan Henderson aligned in central midfield.Lineker felt that England were outnumbered in midfield as a result and said that ...

Supersubs prove World Cup match winners for Belgium RIO DE JANEIRO: Belgian supersub Divock Origi is not sure whether he will get another game at the World Cup, but he is happy to put himself at the mercy of coach Marc Wilmots.The 19-year-old is one of a team of scorers-in-waiting who have taken the European side through to the World Cup last 16.Origi, who could have played for Kenya, came on as a substitute for a second game in a row against Russia ...

Murray, Djokovic take Centre Court stage LONDON: Defending champion Andy Murray and last year's runner-up Novak Djokovic take Centre Court stage as Wimbledon gets underway Monday with both men having urgent points to prove. A proud Scot he may be but Murray, who ended Britain's 77-year wait for a men's champion when he cruised past the Serb in the 2013 final, finds himself shoved into the role of British cheerleader following England's World Cup football misery.Murray starts his campaign against baby-faced ...


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