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Baxter bats away negativity after Bafana’s thumping win vs. Seychelles

Stuart Baxter says it was the performance more than the result that pleased him as South Africa claimed a record 6-0 African Cup of Nations qualifier victory over minnows Seychelles at a wet FNB Stadium on Saturday. Bafana Bafana tightened their grip on a place at next year's African Cup of Nations finals with the victory, in which they might easily have reached double figures were it not for some wasteful finishing and the excellent goalkeeping of Seychelles gloveman Romeo Barra. Baxter had praise…

What’s it like to face Usain Bolt on a soccer pitch? ‘I was more worried about Ross McCormack and Jordan Murray’

Usain Bolt scored his first goal for Central Coast Mariners as he played in an A-League trial game against Macarthur South West United and showed his trademark celebration. Usain Bolt scored his first goal for the Central Coast Mariners as he played in an A-League trial game against Macarther South West United and celebrated with his trademark celebration. Usain Bolt reviews his two-goal performance in a friendly win for Central Coast Mariners and his progress during his trial. Usain Bolt's first goals for a professional football side caught worldwide attention but while spectators zeroed in on the Olympic sprint legend, he wasn't the main focus for the men charged with marking him. Macarthur South West United defender Josh Symons hadn't touched a ball since playing for APIA...

Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk to sit out Belgium-Netherlands friendly

Dutch defender Virgil van Dijk believes Germany lacked confidence during the Netherlands 3-0 victory over the 2014 World Champions. Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk will not play for Netherlands against Belgium in Tuesday's friendly, the Dutch FA (KNVB) has announced. Van Dijk, who scored the opening goal for his country as they beat rivals Germany 3-0 in Amsterdam on Saturday, suffered a rib injury before Liverpool's Champions League win over Paris Saint-Germain last month. Although he aggravated the problem in the win over Southampton the following week, he has since played against Chelsea, Napoli and Manchester City as…

Trent Sainsbury states his case to be Socceroos captain

Josh Risdon is looking forward to the new Socceroos regime and getting used to Graham Arnold's style. KUWAIT CITY — Socceroos defender Trent Sainsbury has confirmed he's a candidate for the national team captaincy. Mile Jedinak's retirement from international duties leaves one of the most important roles in Australian football vacant. On the eve of Australia's friendly clash with Kuwait, the 26-year-old centre-back has no qualms with making plain his ambitions to lead his country. "I'd like to be captain, no way around that," he said from Kuwait City on Saturday. "Anyone who has the chance to captain…

Dave Sarachan hopes U.S. learned lesson in Colombia loss: ‘That’s why you play these games’

TAMPA, Fla. — United States caretaker manager Dave Sarachan said his side learned some hard lessons in its 4-2 defeat to Colombia on Thursday. The U.S. trailed 1-0 at half-time due to James Rodriguez's 36th minute opener, but then stormed back early in the second half as goals three minutes apart from Kellyn Acosta and Bobby Wood staked the U.S. to a 2-1 lead. The advantage lasted just three minutes, however. Carlos Bacca equalized in the 56th minute and as the game became more stretched Colombia…

AFC approves fourth substitute rule for 2019 Asian Cup

Josh Risdon is looking forward to the new Socceroos regime and getting used to Graham Arnold's style. Teams will be allowed to make a fourth substitution if their matches go into extra-time during next year's Asian Cup finals, the Asian Football Confederation said on Friday. Football's law-making body, International Football Association Board (IFAB), earlier this year approved the use of a fourth substitute during extra-time and the rule proved to be a success during the World Cup in Russia. "The entire continent is eagerly awaiting Asia's most prestigious tournament and it is, therefore, essential…

Portugal atop Nations League group after away win against Poland

Poland Portugal 2 3 FT Game Details Live football odds with bet365. Bet Now » GameCast Lineups and Stats Robert Lewandowski's 100th international cap for Poland was spoiled by a come-from-behind 3-2 win by Portugal. Portugal's Bernardo Silva scored a fine individual goal as their new-look side recovered to win 3-2 away to Poland in the UEFA Nations League with an impressive performance on Thursday. Andre Silva's strike and a Kamil Glik own goal put the European champions ahead by half-time, after Krzysztof Piatek had given Poland an early lead, and Bernardo Silva then got in the act early in the second half of the League A Group 3 game. Poland substitute Jakub Blaszczykowski, making his 103rd appearance to become…

Belgian authorities charge five people in fraud, match-fixing investigation

Belgian authorities charged five people on Thursday in relation to a fraud and possible match-fixing probe relating to the country's top division. Four were charged with belonging to a criminal organisation and corruption, while a fifth person was charged with money laundering. Prosecutors said match-fixing allegations centered on the relegation battle from the top division last season and did not involve a major club. Ivan Leko, the coach of Belgian champions Club Brugge, spoke to investigators…

Former Aston Villa chairman Doug Ellis dies aged 94

Former Aston Villa chairman Doug Ellis has died at the age of 94, the English Championship club said on Thursday. Ellis was chairman of Villa in two separate spells from 1968-75 and 1982-06. A businessman who made his fortune in the travel industry, Ellis was nicknamed "Deadly Doug" due to his reputation for being quick to dismiss failing managers. Ellis served on a number of Football Association and FIFA committees and sold Villa to American businessman Randy Lerner in 2006 but he kept his connection…

Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone travels to Argentina to be with sick father

Diego Simeone was an Argentina international in his playing days. Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone travelled back to Argentina this week to be with his family after his father fell ill and is undergoing treatment. Simeone, who is missing a UEFA coaches get-together in Madrid, thanked the staff at the hospital in Argentina where his father is being treated. "I'd like to thank on behalf of my family and myself the Sanatorio de la Trinidad Palermo for the attention and quality with which they always treat us, especially Dr. Roberto Martingano, Dra. Silvina Serra…

Arturo Vidal disrespected Barcelona teammates over angry social media post – chief

The ESPN FC crew answer your tweets on Kylian Mbappe's links to Real Madrid, Philippe Countinho's woes at the Camp Nou and much more. Arturo Vidal's disgruntled social media posts showed a lack of respect towards his Barcelona teammates, the Catalan club's general manager has told Mundo Deportivo.  Vidal posted an angry face emoji on his Instagram story following Barca's Champions League win over Tottenham last Wednesday, when he only came on for the final few minutes. The Chile international then sparked a fresh controversy after Sunday's draw at Valencia, when he was an unused substitute, after posting and then deleting…

Manchester United trigger ¬10m Anthony Martial payment after Newcastle goal

Following a disappointing run of form for Manchester United, Craig Burley and Ross Dyer discuss whether it's time to give Marcus Rashford a chance in the central role. Brazil and Manchester United's Fred insists he is honoured to be called up for the national team but insists he is looking forward to being back at the club despite recent negative results. Manchester United's Brazilian midfielder Fred says any club would be under pressure if results were not going their way. Anthony Martial's goal against Newcastle cost Manchester United £8.7 million. A clause in Martial's transfer agreement from Monaco in 2015 guaranteed the French club an additional payment of €10m if the forward reached 25 league goals before 2019.  Martial reached the mark du...