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Wales manager Coleman unfazed by Bale jeers LONDON: Wales manager Chris Coleman played down concerns regarding Gareth Bale's popularity at Real Madrid on Wednesday, describing the forward as the last player he needed to worry about.Despite scoring crucial goals in Madrid's Copa del Rey and Champions League final triumphs last season, Bale has been jeered by some of the club's fans in recent weeks for his supposed selfishness on the pitch.The 25-year-old former Tottenham Hotspur flyer recently went nine games without scoring, but Coleman said he had no qualms about Bale's state of mind ahead of Wales's crucial European Championship qualifier in Israel."He's got no points to prove from us," Coleman said after naming his squad for the March 28 game in Haifa. "His fight in Madrid and what he has to prove every time he goes on the pitch there is separate to us."I've worked in Spain and I know how it works. And as much ...

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Johnson to return to Sunderland training LONDON: Premier League strugglers Sunderland announced on Wednesday that winger Adam Johnson is to return to training following his arrest on suspicion of sexual activity with an under-age girl.The 27-year-old England international, arrested two weeks ago, had his bail extended by five weeks on Tuesday and does not need to report back to police until April 23.Sunderland suspended Johnson pending the outcome of the police investigation, but following consultation with players' union the Professional Footballers' ...

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Montenegrin police arrest five players over match-fixing PODGORICA: Five players from Montenegro's first and second division clubs were arrested on Wednesday on suspicion of match-fixing, the Balkan country's interior ministry said."Police have reason to believe that the arrested suspects have committed a felony of forming a criminal enterprise to arrange the outcome of competitive events," senior police official Milovan Pavicevic told a news conference."A several month-long investigation, aided by the Montenegrin Football Association, the state prosecutor's office, police from countries in the ...

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Record breaking World Cup predicted by rugby chief LONDON: A record number of tickets will be sold for this year's rugby union World Cup in England, the head of the sport's ruling body said Wednesday.The tournament will be the most viewed, best-attended World Cup ever, according to World Rugby."With six months to go, Rugby World Cup 2015 is in record-breaking shape and we are confident of a very special event that will capture the imagination on and off the field," said WR chairman ...

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Vonn bags 18th globe, Jansrud trumps Reichelt MÉRIBEL: Lindsey Vonn took a further step to a historic 19th career crystal globe with victory in the season-ending World Cup downhill on Wednesday, while Kjetil Jansrud wrapped up the men's discipline.Vonn, the 2010 Olympic downhill gold medallist, went into the race 35 points ahead of Anna Fenninger and 96 in front of Tina Maze, the Austrian and Slovenian looking to amass vital points in their battle for the overall title.But the 30-year-old American, herself ...

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Atletico suffer triple injury blow MADRID: Atletico Madrid were left counting the cost of their progression to the quarter-finals of the Champions League on penalties over Bayer Leverkusen on Tuesday with three key players set for a spell on the sidelines.Goalkeeper Miguel Angel Moya had to be replaced after just 23 minutes with a hamstring injury in his left leg that is expected to keep him out for a few weeks.Mario Mandzukic was also withdrawn after suffering a twisted ankle, ...

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Atletico joy papers over cracks of misfiring attack BARCELONA: Atletico Madrid showed their typical battling spirit to edge out Bayer Leverkusen on Tuesday but last year's Champions League finalists will be mighty relieved to have advanced to the last eight after once more failing to sparkle in attack.The joy of Atletico's first penalty shootout triumph in Europe will diminish once the dust settles on a narrow victory that did little to suggest they had rediscovered a cutting edge up front.Midfielder Mario Suarez's first ...