FIFA TO REBUILD BOMBED STADIUM: FIFA will pay for the refurbishment of the main soccer stadium in the Gaza Strip after Israel bombed the pitch last week, the game's world governing body said in a statement on Tuesday.
The pitch of the Palestine Stadium was hit by a warhead and rendered unplayable in a bombardment of areas Israel says are used by militants to fire rockets across the border into the Jewish state.
“In order to show its strong commitment ... as a unifying tool in the region, FIFA will cover the costs of the rehabilitation of the football pitch of the Palestine Stadium in Gaza after it was damaged in a recent bombardment,” the FIFA statement said. – Reuters
BOLTON FIRST FOR ALLARDYCE: England target Sam Allardyce insisted yesterday he was committed to managing England Premiership side Bolton.
Allardyce has been linked to a number of other jobs, including taking over from England boss Sven-Goran Eriksson after the World Cup finals.
But he told the club's official website: “I would like to reassure everyone connected with Bolton Wanderers that my immediate priority is to scour the length and breadth of Europe in the search for quality players that will improve our squad over the coming seasons. – AFP
SHEFFIELD KEEPER UNDER PROBE: Sheffield United goalkeeper Paddy Kenny is under police investigation for taunting Hull City fans.
Hull City fans were upset by gestures Kenny made after United defeated Hull 3-2 Saturday.
“A number of complaints have been received and officers are looking into them,'' Sheffield police superintendent Martin Hemingway said.
HAVELANGE GETS A PACEMAKER: Former FIFA president Joao Havelange has undergone an operation to have a pacemaker inserted, a hospital statement said on Tuesday.
The 89-year-old was admitted to the Samaritano hospital on Monday where he was diagnosed as having an irregular heartbeat. Havelange was president of FIFA from 1974 to 1998. – Reuters
PSG SOLD FOR 41mil EUROS: Canal Plus said on Tuesday that it had agreed to sell Paris St Germain to a group of investors led by Colony Capital, Butler Capital Partners and Morgan Stanley.
Canal Plus, the pay-TV division of French media giant Vivendi, said it had sold the club, one of the traditional powers of French soccer but recently starved of silverware, for 41 million euros. – Reuters
RONALDO OUT FOR THREE WEEKS: Ronaldo will be out for two to three weeks with torn muscle fibres in his right thigh, and Brazil coach Carlos Alberto Parreira is regarding it in a positive light.
Ronaldo was injured on Saturday in Real Madrid’s 1-1 draw with Real Sociedad.
The injury, Ronaldo’s sixth this season, came two months before Brazil kick off their defence of the World Cup title in Germany.
“He will stop for two or three weeks, can recover and return in even better condition,” Parreira said on Tuesday in an interview with the Rio de Janeiro daily O Globo.
Parreira is to announce Brazil’s World Cup squad on May 22, and Ronaldo – summoned for the Cup in 1994, '98 and 2002 – is certain to be on the list. – AP
1966 BUBBLY UP FOR AUCTION: A unique bottle of 1966 Dom Perignon champagne, signed by the surviving members of England’s World
Cup-winning team of the same year, will be sold at a London auction house next month.
The champagne, specially released from Dom Perignon’s reserves, is the only bottle of its kind and will be sold at Sotheby’s auction house on May 10 in memory of Bobby Moore, captain of the team that beat Germany 4-2 in the final.
Moore died of bowel cancer in 1993, and profits will go to the Bobby Moore Fund for Cancer Research UK.
The 1966 bottle is noted for being one of the brand’s finest vintages. It is expected to sell at £5,000-£8,000. – AP