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World Cup qualifiers

Start of African World Cup qualifiers could be postponed to September
Sports

Start of African World Cup qualifiers could be postponed to September

  • "We are waiting on final confirmation from CAF, but that is the thinking at the moment, that the qualification will start in September and not in June," Motsepe's advisor Danny Jordaan, who is also president of the South African Football Association, told reporters.
  • A final decision is expected to be made at the next CAF Executive Committee meeting, which is scheduled for May 15 in Kigali. A CAF spokesperson declined to comment when contacted by Reuters.
Published 05 May, 2021 08:44pm
No ill-effects from international return for Ibrahimovic: Pioli
Sports

No ill-effects from international return for Ibrahimovic: Pioli

  • Ibrahimovic came out of international retirement to compete for Sweden for the first time in five years last week, making an assist in each of his two starts for his country in World Cup qualifiers against Georgia and Kosovo.
  • "He's fine, we are happy both for the national team and for him being back here with us," Pioli told a news conference on Friday.
Published 02 Apr, 2021 09:40pm
Portugal's Santos heads into 1000th game as coach
Sports

Portugal's Santos heads into 1000th game as coach

  • The 66-year old from Lisbon won Euro 2016 and the 2019 Nations League with his country, having clinched the Portuguese league and cup double with Porto in 1999 and the 2002 Greek cup with AEK Athens.
Published 27 Mar, 2021 09:00pm
Pope gets nod for England, Shaw gets boost
Sports

Pope gets nod for England, Shaw gets boost

  • "He has been really patient for his opportunity and has performed consistently at a high level every week for his club and has been with us for a very long time waiting for this moment," said Southgate, confirming the 28-year-old's starting role.
  • Pope had little to do against San Marino but will hope he can now make a strong case to keep the first choice spot.
Published 27 Mar, 2021 08:44pm
Four Czech players to miss World Cup qualifier against Belgium
Sports

Four Czech players to miss World Cup qualifier against Belgium

  • Team captain and Hertha Berlin midfielder Vladimir Darida, Bayer Leverkusen forward Patrik Schick, Hoffenheim defender Pavel Kaderabek and Werder Bremen goalkeeper Jiri Pavlenka all started in the Group E qualifier on Wednesday against Estonia but will now miss the Belgium match.
  • "German authorities could not confirm that those national team players would not have to go into quarantine after their return to Germany," Sedivy said, explaining why the clubs would not release the players.
Published 27 Mar, 2021 06:14pm
Netherlands players to follow Norway, Germany in Qatar protest
Sports

Netherlands players to follow Norway, Germany in Qatar protest

  • The Dutch protest will follow action taken by the players of Norway and Germany who wore shirts before their World Cup qualifiers this week voicing concern over the conditions for migrant workers in the Gulf country.
  • "I can give a scoop," De Ligt said, referring to the planned protest. "You will see what it is tomorrow."
Published 26 Mar, 2021 07:03pm
Eriksen describes 'hectic' days amid Denmark uncertainty
Sports

Eriksen describes 'hectic' days amid Denmark uncertainty

  • The Danes take on Israel in their first qualification match for the 2022 Qatar World Cup on Thursday, before facing Moldova on Sunday and Austria next week.
  • "They were very hectic days," Eriksen told a news conference ahead of Denmark's game against Israel. "Before the weekend it was practically a no, then we started getting closer to the weekend and it became more and more a yes.
Published 25 Mar, 2021 06:35pm
French authorities allow foreign players to forgo quarantine
Sports

French authorities allow foreign players to forgo quarantine

  • Earlier this week, the French league said that Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 clubs "would not make available for selection the foreign players summoned for matches outside the EU / EEA zone during the next international period in March."
  • "It's a big surprise to hear that on Saturday. These situations could be anticipated," he said.
Published 20 Mar, 2021 09:32pm
Ronaldo pushed for Portugal to face Azerbaijan in Turin: reports
Sports

Ronaldo pushed for Portugal to face Azerbaijan in Turin: reports

  • Earlier this month, Portugal were granted permission to change the location of their qualifier against Azerbaijan from Lisbon to Turin over coronavirus concerns, and several Italian newspapers suggest Ronaldo played a part in the move.
  • Gazzetta dello Sport and Tuttosport said Portugal's all-time top goalscorer also negotiated with Juventus for his compatriots to use the club's Continassa sports centre and for the team to stay at J|Hotel next to the training base.
Published 18 Mar, 2021 08:17pm
Barca's Dembele back in France squad for World Cup qualifiers
Sports

Barca's Dembele back in France squad for World Cup qualifiers

  • Dembele, who has three goals in 21 La Liga appearances for Barca this season, won the last of his 21 caps in a 2-0 defeat against the Netherlands in the Nations Cup in November 2018.
  • "He is still a young player. He has not been spared by injuries," coach Didier Deschamps told a news conference after naming the 23-year-old in a 26-man squad.
Published 18 Mar, 2021 07:24pm
Southampton striker Adams called up by Scotland
Sports

Southampton striker Adams called up by Scotland

  • The 24-year-old has played for England's under-20 team but qualifies for Scotland through the grandparent rule.
  • Adams, who previously turned down an approach from Scotland in 2019, has seven goals and four assists in the Premier League for Southampton.
Updated 16 Mar, 2021 10:03pm
Ibrahimovic back in Sweden squad By Philip O'Connor
Sports

Ibrahimovic back in Sweden squad By Philip O'Connor

  • Ibrahimovic, 39, scored 62 goals in 116 internationals before quitting the team following their exit at the group stage of Euro 2016.
  • Ibra has scored 14 goals in 14 Serie A appearances for AC Milan so far this season.
Updated 16 Mar, 2021 10:00pm
Luis Enrique names four debutants, drops Kepa, from Spain squad
Sports

Luis Enrique names four debutants, drops Kepa, from Spain squad

  • Barcelona's 18-year-old forward Pedri, Brighton & Hove Albion goalkeeper Robert Sanchez, Eibar attacker Bryan Gil and fullback Pedro Porro of Sporting are the new faces in a squad that only contains six players from Spain's 'big three' clubs.
  • His team mate Pedri has been one of the breakout stars of this La Liga campaign, making 26 La Liga appearances in his debut season.
Published 15 Mar, 2021 06:49pm
South American World Cup qualifiers in doubt as clubs take hard line
Sports

South American World Cup qualifiers in doubt as clubs take hard line

  • All 10 South American countries feature on the UK government's "red list" travel ban, which does not include exemptions for athletes and sports people.
  • I think everybody agrees -- we can't let the players go and play for their country and then quarantine for 10 days in a hotel. That's not how we can do it.
Updated 04 Mar, 2021 09:53pm