Tag Archives: afternoon

Joey Barton criticised by Paris Saint-Germain for ladyboy tweets aimed at Thiago Silva

PSG blast Marseille's Barton for 'ladyboy' tweets aimed at Brazilian defender Silva

By
James Cann, Press Association

PUBLISHED:

20:13 GMT, 3 April 2013

|

UPDATED:

20:13 GMT, 3 April 2013

Paris Saint-Germain have criticised Joey Barton after the Marseille midfielder used social networking website Twitter to liken Thiago Silva to an 'overweight ladyboy'.

In a series of tweets published through his official account, the on-loan QPR player questioned whether Brazilian defender Silva was 'pre-op or post-op' and demanded an explanation why the 28-year-old had mentioned him in his pre-match press conference ahead of last night's Champions League quarter-final with Barcelona.

The Ligue 1 leaders tonight expressed their unhappiness with Barton's 'unacceptable remarks' and threatened to “take action” against the former England international.

Immense: Thiago Silva (right) played against Barcelona for Paris Saint-Germain on Tuesday

Immense: Thiago Silva (right) played against Barcelona for Paris Saint-Germain on Tuesday

A statement published on psg.fr read: 'In the last few hours, on social networks, unacceptable remarks have been made by Olympique Marseille player Joey Barton against Paris St Germain player Thiago Silva.

'These attacks are serious and go beyond mere verbal jousting. The directors of the club, the players and the coaching staff are supportive of Thiago Silva and cannot accept such statements.

'They reaffirm their unwavering commitment to the values of respect that should govern our sport.

'Thiago Silva and Paris St Germain reserve the right to take any action they deem necessary.'

PSG have taken issue with a series of tweets against the player which began to appear on Barton's account from yesterday afternoon.

Barton originally tweeted: 'Thiago Silva. That the same p**** thats been injured all season. Another over rated Brazilian. Sort your hamstrings out FatBoy…'

Blast: PSG have criticised the Marseille midfielder (right) for his tweets about their defender

Blast: PSG have criticised the Marseille midfielder (right) for his tweets about their defender

Joey Barton

Thiago Silva

Leap: Barton (left) demanded to know why Silva was discussing him in his pre-match press conference

The Liverpudlian was responding negatively to comments from Silva ahead of last night's game at the Parc des Princes, which finished 2-2 ahead of next week's second leg at the Nou Camp.

He continued tweeting during the game, adding: 'Have to take back what I said about Thiago Silva being over rated today. Been immense tonight. Still looks like a overweight ladyboy though!

'2 questions for Thiago Silva. Firstly, Why are YOU talking about ME, in your press conference before PSG v Barca Very strange.

'Secondly, Are you Pre-Op or Post-Op #transsexual #thiagosaladyboy

'Baffles me, which way he's going. Is he a man changing to a woman or a woman changing to a man Can't work it out.'

Inflammatory: Barton took to Twitter to slate the PSG defender

Inflammatory: Barton took to Twitter to slate the PSG defender

Speaking to L'Equipe on Monday, Silva had said: 'There is a Marseille player, I cannot remember his name, an Englishman, who has said bad things about Neymar and Brazilian football, and also about (David) Beckham and (Zlatan) Ibrahimovic.

'Because no one is talking about him, it seems it is fun for him to criticise great players for people to know he exists.'

Lionel Messi sidelined for at least one game after limping out of Barcelona Champions League tie with Paris Saint-Germain

Messi faces rare spell on the sidelines.. but Barcelona are better off in Europe without their star man!

By
Adam Shergold

PUBLISHED:

10:17 GMT, 3 April 2013

|

UPDATED:

15:15 GMT, 3 April 2013

It's a sight that has been thankfully rare over the years for Barcelona fans and the millions who appreciate his genius.

But Lionel Messi is facing a spell on the sidelines of up to three weeks after being substituted at half-time during last night's Champions League tie in Paris with a hamstring injury.

The club have confirmed that he has a thigh injury and will miss Saturday's match at home to Real Mallorca at the very least. Messi even took to his Facebook page to confirm his knock isn't as bad as first feared.

Scroll down for video

Allaying fears: Messi posted this picture on his Facebook page on Wednesday afternoon, saying his hamstring injury was not as serious as first thought

Allaying fears: Messi posted this picture on his Facebook page on Wednesday afternoon, saying his hamstring injury was not as serious as first thought

Check up: Messi is accompanied by defender Jordi Alba as he walks to the medical centre at Barcelona's training ground. Initial scans on his hamstring injury suggest the damage isn't as bad as first feared

Check up: Messi is accompanied by defender Jordi Alba as he walks to the medical centre at Barcelona's training ground. Initial scans on his hamstring injury suggest the damage isn't as bad as first feared

Lionel Messi has his hamstring injury assessed at Barcelona's training ground

Rare injury blow: Lionel Messi (second left) watched the second half of Barcelona's 2-2 draw with PSG after suffering a hamstring injury

Rare injury blow: Lionel Messi (second left) watched the second half of Barcelona's 2-2 draw with PSG after suffering a hamstring injury

Deadly: Before going off, Messi opened the scoring with his 57th goal of the season

Deadly: Before going off, Messi opened the scoring with his 57th goal of the season

MESSI'S APPEARANCES

Goals scored in brackets

2004-2005: 9 (1)
2005-2006: 25 (8)
2006-2007: 36 (17)
2007-2008: 40 (16)
2008-2009: 51 (38)
2009-2010: 53 (47)
2010-2011: 55 (53)
2011-2012: 60 (73)
2012-2013: 45 (57)

Depending on his recovery, it could also
see him absent from the return with PSG next week and subsequent La
Liga matches that will see Barca secure the title.

For someone who is always target No 1 for brutish defenders, Lionel Messi is astonishingly resilient.

His untouchable scoring record and long list of accolades are testament not only to his brilliance but a good injury record.

In fact this season, the 25-year-old has played 3,193 of a possible 3,420 minutes in the league and Champions League – meaning he's missed just 227 minutes of action in these competitions.

Representing a club inevitably involved to the business end of competitions, Messi is used to playing in excess of 50 matches a season for Barcelona and up to a dozen more for Argentina.

Whereas other star players, particularly in the Premier League, are rested or rotated for less important games, Messi is as likely to start against Granada and Getafe than he is against Real Madrid.

But the physical toll rarely shows on his body, with the Argentine suffering only four injury lay-offs of note over his career.

Concern: Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova talks to Messi during last night's quarter-final, first leg

Concern: Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova talks to Messi during last night's quarter-final, first leg

Bloodied: Messi took a knock to the knee, which led to him being taken off at half-time

Bloodied: Messi took a knock to the knee, which led to him being taken off at half-time

Pain: Messi grabs the back of his right leg during the match at the Parc des Princes

Pain: Messi grabs the back of his right leg during the match at the Parc des Princes

Before last night, he had not had a muscle injury for three-and-a-half years, when a calf problem ruled him out of a Champions League tie with Inter Milan and a league Clasico with Real in November 2009.

He was an unused substitute in the Inter tie as Pep Guardiola decided not to risk him.

He missed league games against Sporting Gijon and Athletic Bilbao in September 2010 with a stretched ligament, but returned for a trip to Russia to play Rubin Kazan the following week.

Prior to that, you have to go back to the 2007-2008 season when a 20-year-old Messi missed about 10 weeks of the season with a couple of injury scares.

Source: Opta

Source: Opta

Source: Opta

Source: Opta

While Barcelona's quarter-final tie with PSG is delicately poised at 2-2, Messi's team-mates won't be too concerned by his absence.

The statistics show that, in Champions League games since Messi broke into the first team in 2004, they have won 71 per cent of matches without him and just 56 per cent of games when he's been rested or injured.

This is probably explained by Barcelona's run to the trophy in 2006, when Messi played just six of the club's 13 games.

Golden Balls: Messi, four time Ballon D'Or winner, shakes hands with David Beckham before the match

Golden Balls: Messi, four time Ballon D'Or winner, shakes hands with David Beckham before the match

By contrast, in La Liga, Barcelona have won 76 per cent of games since 2004 with him in the team.

But when Messi is absent, they have won only half.

The injury will bring to an end his record run of scoring in 19 consecutive league games. His first-half goal against PSG also drew him level with Cristiano Ronaldo and Galatasaray's Burak Yilmaz as top scorer in the Champions League with eight goals.

In addition, defender Javier Mascherano was taken off on a stretcher after 84 minutes with a knee injury and will be missing for 'four to six weeks' according to Barca coach Jordi Roura.

Injury worry: Messi's compatriot Javier Mascherano was stretchered off late in the game

Injury worry: Messi's compatriot Javier Mascherano was stretchered off late in the game

Messi's absence turns the spotlight on Barcelona's misfiring strike force.

Spain's David Villa and Pedro, Chile's Alexis Sanchez, and midfielder-cum-forward Cesc Fabregas have managed only three goals between them in Europe, trailing way behind Messi, the Champions League's leading scorer for the the last four seasons in a row.

Sanchez is clearly lacking in confidence, as was seen with two poorly-taken chances on Tuesday, though he did win the penalty for Xavi to put Barca 2-1 up near the end.

Misfiring: Barcelona will rely on the out-of-form Alexis Sanchez for the second leg next week

Misfiring: Barcelona will rely on the out-of-form Alexis Sanchez for the second leg next week

Villa has failed to recover his consistency and sharpness since breaking his leg at the Club World Cup in December 2011, and Fabregas has been short of form in recent weeks.

Pedro, who was suspended on Tuesday, should have recovered from a calf injury for the second leg, but has yet to get off the mark in the Champions League this season.

Cristian Tello is another option. The little-used, young winger scored one and set up the second for Messi in their 2-2 draw at Real Zaragoza in La Liga last Saturday, and brings a directness and pace to an attack that at times lacks a cutting edge.

He has scored one goal in the Champions League this season.

Beckham pleased with draw against Barcelona

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Blair Turgott scores hat-trick as West Ham beat QPR 3-1 in a friendly at Upton Park

VIDEO: West Ham and QPR field first-team stars in friendly, but 18-year-old Turgott steals the show at Upton Park

By
Andy James

PUBLISHED:

19:13 GMT, 19 March 2013

|

UPDATED:

20:56 GMT, 19 March 2013

Blair Turgott stole the show with a hat-trick on Tuesday afternoon as West Ham saw off QPR 3-1 in a friendly at Upton Park.

The 18-year-old scored twice in the first half before completing his hat-trick early in the second period in a match which saw both sides field a number of players from their first-team squad.

Adel Taarabt scored a free-kick just after half-time for QPR, who gave run-outs to Nedum Onuoha,
Jamie Mackie, Esteban Granero, Jay Bothroyd, Shaun Derry, Luke Young and Junior Hoilett.

Scroll down for highlights

Star: 18-year-old Blair Turgott (second left) scored a hat-trick for West Ham at Upton Park

Star: 18-year-old Blair Turgott (second left) scored a hat-trick for West Ham at Upton Park

High-profile friendly: Marouane Chamakh and Shaun Derry compete for a header

High-profile friendly: Marouane Chamakh and Shaun Derry compete for a header

West Ham's team featured Marouane Chamakh, Wellington Paulista, James Tomkins, Jordan Spence and George McCartney, who hasn't featured for the first team since December due to a knee injury.

Turgott opened the scoring in the 12th minute, with a long-range effort that flew into the top corner, before adding a second 16 minutes later with a measured, curling finish into the bottom corner.

Taarabt's free-kick two minutes after half-time reduced QPR's deficit to 2-1 before Turgott cut inside right back Young before firing an unstoppable shot into the top corner in the 52nd minute.

The game also featured Canada Under 20 international goalkeeper Jordan Santiago, 21, who is on trail with West Ham.

VIDEO: Watch Blair Turgott's hat-trick

League One round-up: Swindon go top but Fabrizio Piccareta says he will resign in the morning

Piccareta claims he and Swindon's backroom staff will resign on Wednesday despite Robins going top

PUBLISHED:

22:38 GMT, 19 February 2013

|

UPDATED:

23:22 GMT, 19 February 2013

Swindon assistant manager Fabrizio Piccareta claimed the club's backroom staff were all set to resign in the morning despite a 3-1 victory over Tranmere taking them to the top of League One.

Manager Paolo Di Canio quit yesterday citing off-field problems at the club and Piccareta revealed after the victory at Prenton Park the technical staff would follow suit.

Piccareta, who was put in charge for the trip to Tranmere, was adamant it would be his final game.

Going: Swindon beat Tranmere 3-1 but Fabrizio Piccareta will resign tomorrow

Going: Swindon beat Tranmere 3-1 but Fabrizio Piccareta will resign tomorrow

'After this game, this fantastic game
that everyone has witnessed, I want to tell you that this is our last
game as technical staff of this football club,' said Piccareta

'I want to highlight one thing. This
achievement that this fantastic team got tonight, so top of the league
and this victory has a name, and a surname and that is Paolo Di Canio.

'People must know that yesterday he
released a statement at 7pm, but until 5pm yesterday afternoon we were
together preparing for this game as usual, in the best professional way.

'And I just spoke to Paolo because he
just rang me to congratulate us and the players because he is absolutely
happy of what his team has achieved.'

Slow start: All the goals came in the second half at Prenton Park

Slow start: All the goals came in the second half at Prenton Park

He added: 'From tomorrow, I don't know what is
going on with Swindon Town Football Club but this was a very important
moment to say thanks to the Swindon Town fans that are amazing.

'Tomorrow morning we will resign
because we are here for Paolo Di Canio and we will follow Paolo Di Canio
everywhere. Even if he will coach Real Madrid or Luton Town.'

All the goals came in the second half at Prenton Park.

James Collins hit a fierce long-range opener for the Robins (48) with Gary Roberts (71) firing into the top left-hand corner of the goal from 25 yards to double the lead.

Gone: Paulo Di Canio resigned as Swindon Town manager on Monday

Gone: Paulo Di Canio resigned as Swindon Town manager on Monday

Tranmere pulled one back seven minutes later when Donervon Daniels slotted home from close range but any hopes of a comeback were dashed by Roberts' stunning long-range strike at the death.

In the other League One match, Oldham climbed out of the relegation zone with a 2-1 win at Stevenage.

James Dunne gave Stevenage a ninth-minute lead but the Latics hit back through Dean Furman (46) and a James Tarkowski header (60).

Billy Davies Nottingham Forest manager

Davies back as Nottingham Forest boss to replace McLeish

By
Graeme Yorke

PUBLISHED:

13:45 GMT, 7 February 2013

|

UPDATED:

18:09 GMT, 7 February 2013

Forest return: Davies

Forest return: Davies

Billy Davies has returned to Nottingham Forest for a second spell as manager, becoming their third boss this season.

Davies and his representatives were in negotiations with Forest chairman Fawaz Al-Hasawi on Wednesday and the Championship club announced it on Thursday afternoon.

'I'm delighted to welcome Billy back to our club and really look forward to working closely with him,' chairman Fawaz Al Hasawi said. 'Billy has unfinished business with the Reds and we know how hungry he is for success. In returning to the City Ground we believe his leadership will help us fulfil our ambition of making it to the Premier League.

'Billy is a Forest legend who needs no introduction to our loyal fans. We know how excited he is to pick up where he left off last time and we will back him 110 per cent – this is a very exciting appointment for us.'

Davies described being back at the club as a 'dream come true' and is looking forward to officially beginning his role on Monday.

'It is a privilege and an honour to be back in charge of the Reds. As my new friend Fawaz says, I have unfinished business here at Forest and I am relishing this great opportunity to return Forest to its former glory.

'My tenure at the City Ground was cut short last time and I can't wait to get my boots back on and training the lads.

'We have a great squad and I know I can get the best from them. Coming home to the Reds is a dream come true.'

The 48-year-old Scot was dismissed by Forest's old regime in June 2011.

After steering the club away from relegation following his appointment in January 2009 and then masterminding successive play-off campaigns during his first spell at the City Ground, Davies is on record as stating that he has 'unfinished business' at the club.

Davies succeeds Alex McLeish and Sean O'Driscoll at the City Ground.

McLeish resigned his post earlier this week just over a month after taking over from O'Driscoll, who was sacked on Boxing Day.

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini admits he is a huge fan of Luis Suarez

Suarez in contention to replace Balotelli at City as Mancini admits he is a huge fan

By
Graeme Yorke

PUBLISHED:

11:33 GMT, 2 February 2013

|

UPDATED:

12:06 GMT, 2 February 2013

Luis Suarez could be a potential candidate to replace Mario Balotelli with Roberto Mancini admitting he is a big admirer of the Liverpool hotshot.

City were cut down to three senior strikers after Balotelli completed a 19.5million move to AC Milan this week and Mancini clearly believes Suarez would be a valuable addition to his squad.

Mancini said: 'For me, Suarez is a top player, I like him as he is strong, he works.'

Target man: Luis Suarez (left) is likely to lead the line against Manchester City on Sunday

Target man: Luis Suarez (left) is likely to lead the line against Manchester City on Sunday

According to The Sun, City's Italian manager is preparing a 40million summer bid for the Uruguayan hitman.

It will not be easy to prise the 26-year-old striker away from Anfield should Mancini make a bid for Suarez.

In an exclusive interview with Sportsmail earlier this week, Suarez vowed to stay at Liverpool even if they don't qualify for the Champions League this season.

He said: 'I will wait until the end of the season and see how we are doing,' he says. 'We won't know until then how we are doing and what our position is so I am prepared to wait until that time.

In line: Mancini believes Suarez would be an ideal candidate to deputise up front for City

In line: Mancini believes Suarez would be an ideal candidate to deputise up front for City

Three remain: Tevez (centre), Aguero (right) and Edin Dzeko are options up front for Mancini since the departure of Mario Balotelli

Three remain: Tevez (centre), Aguero (right) and Edin Dzeko are options up front for Mancini since the departure of Mario Balotelli

'But I want to say now that, if you want to know what will happen to me if we don't qualify for the Champions League, then I will say this: I have a contract with Liverpool and I am very happy here. I will stay.'

Mancini and his City squad face Liverpool tomorrow afternoon at the Etihad, and bid to keep pace with league leaders United.

But Suarez's strike partner, ex-City forward Daniel Sturridge, believes the pair are developing a 'telepathic' understanding which could trouble the champions.

Sturridge, who left the Etihad for Chelsea in 2009, told the Daily Telegraph: 'It's early days but the signs are that we're playing well together.

'As you play with someone more regularly, you do things telepathically, you know where they're going to be and you start playing off the cuff.'

Then and now: Daniel Sturridge is hoping to beat Manchester City, who he left in 2009, with Liverpool

Then and now: Daniel Sturridge is hoping to beat Manchester City, who he left in 2009, with Liverpool

Then and now: Daniel Sturridge is hoping to beat Manchester City, who he left in 2009, with Liverpool

England lose to Delhi in India warm-up match

Bell century in vain as England slump to second consecutive ODI warm-up defeat

By
Mike Dickson

PUBLISHED:

15:03 GMT, 8 January 2013

|

UPDATED:

15:58 GMT, 8 January 2013

An Ian Bell century was not enough as England slumped to a second warm-up defeat in three days ahead of Friday’s opening one-day international against India.

The tourists will head to Rajkot on Wednesday with plenty to think about, notably their failure to defend a formidable total of 294-4 against a Delhi team weaker than the India A side who overcame them at the weekend.

On another chill day, this time at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium where internationals are played, they could not stop the local select eleven overhauling them for the loss of four wickets with nine balls to spare.

Century boy: Bell scored a ton, but it wasn't enough to save England

Century boy: Bell scored a ton, but it wasn't enough to save England

While the batsmen did their job in the
watery afternoon sun, particularly Bell, who made light of the absence
of the rested Kevin Pietersen with a polished 108, the bowlers were
powerless to prevent their youthful opposition picking off the runs.

With Graeme Swann, Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad at home, new one-day coach Ashley Giles does not have too many options to turn things round before the end of the week, although Tim Bresnan sat this one out.

Certainly the attack looks short of leadership, with James Tredwell probably the pick and Steven Finn among those not having the happiest day.

Alastair Cook won the toss and chose to bat against a team featuring three players with full international experience on a day when temperatures mercifully crept over double figures.

Having sufficiently recovered from the heavy cold that kept him out of Sunday’s defeat, Cook looked fluent in making 44 before he was bowled when Sumit Narwal went round the wicket.

Bell looked slightly awkward at first but then accelerated gracefully, hitting a series of extravagant drives through the covers after advancing down the wicket. He should have been stumped on 60, but otherwise he added to Sunday’s 91 almost faultlessly, making his 108 in 125 balls with two sixes and 10 fours.

Rough start: New limited-overs head coach Giles is yet to savour victory

Rough start: New limited-overs head coach Giles is yet to savour victory

Eoin Morgan looked comfortable in making a near run-a-ball 52 and Craig Kieswetter added the late surge with 41 off 27 balls that finished with two consecutive sixes swiped over mid wicket.

Having overdone the bouncers under the new two-per-over rule at the weekend there was less of them yesterday and Finn was guilty over-pitching as India made a strong start that was only undone with the introduction of Tredwell.

Unmukt Chand, India’s Under 19 skipper and regarded as high quality prospect, had been going well for his 37 but then lamely chipped the Kent spinner to Cook at mid-on.

With captain Shikhar Darwan, owner of five one-day caps, heading towards a century, the home team went smoothly to 188 for two but two quick wickets halted their progress and suggested that England would get their first win of this tour.

When part-time spinner Joe Root trapped Darwan for an excellent 110 – Tredwell was convinced he had him caught behind just before he brought up a century with a six – Cook looked to have pulled off a masterstroke.

But the inexperienced Milind Kumar, 21, rebuilt the momentum of the innings to the point where 75 were needed off the last 10 overs, and he ended unbeaten on 78.

Picture dispute

We are unable to carry live pictures from the ODI Series in India due to a dispute between the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and international news organisations.

The BCCI has refused access to venues to established picture agencies Getty Images and Action Images and other Indian photographic agencies.

MailOnline consider this action to be a strike against press freedom and supports the action to boycott BCCI imagery.

Luis Suarez handball: Graham Poll"s verdict

Suarez can't be held responsible for his handball, even if he owned up the ref's call would have stood

By
Graham Poll

PUBLISHED:

21:58 GMT, 6 January 2013

|

UPDATED:

21:59 GMT, 6 January 2013

Luis Suarez has form when it comes to cheating. But in the latest incident to attract negative headlines the Uruguayan striker was blameless, scoring what proved to be the winner in the FA Cup clash at Mansfield Town.

Handball remains the only offence in law which must be deliberate for a free-kick to be awarded – if the referee sees it.

*LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK OF SUAREZ'S HANDBALL BELOW AND GRAHAM WILL RESPOND TO THE BEST DEBATED COMMENTS ON MONDAY AFTERNOON

Instinct or intent Luis Suarez handled the ball before he scored for Liverpool

Instinct or intent Luis Suarez handled the ball before he scored for Liverpool

Another view: Suarez bats the ball back into his path before firing it home

Another view: Suarez bats the ball back into his path before firing it home

No chance: Alan Marriott is helpless to prevent Suarez netting the Reds' second of the tie

No chance: Alan Marriott is helpless to prevent Suarez netting the Reds' second of the tie

Rolled in: Suarez tapped the ball into an empty net

Rolled in: Suarez tapped the ball into an empty net

However, there are occasions when the
officials may see a handball they do not believe to be deliberate,
though penalise the offender because they have gained too great an
advantage from the ball hitting the arm.

The Suarez goal was just such an
incident which is why I am sue referee Andre Marriner did not see the
contact, rather than judge it to be accidental. Replays certainly showed
his view was obscured.

To be clear, Suarez sees the ball
rebound from the Mansfield Town goalkeeper, Alan Marriott, and tries to
get his arms out of the way; the ball hits his right arm and drops
kindly for the striker to tap the ball into the empty net.

Complaints: Mansfield players were unhappy with the decision to allow the goal

Complaints: Mansfield players were unhappy with the decision to allow the goal

The celebration, the commonly known
kiss of the wrist, was in no way an indication to opposing fans that he
had cheated, as was asserted by the ESPN commentary team.

Having known he gained from the
handball there have been suggestions that he should have told Marriner,
but I do not believe that would have made any difference – other than to
improve the Uruguayan’s tainted image.

Referees give what they see and stick
with those decisions. The images of Liverpool’s Robbie Fowler asking
Gerald Ashby to change a penalty award at Highbury are still clear – but
the penalty stood.

Trademark: Suarez kissed the inside of his wrist, as he does to celebrate his goals

Trademark: Suarez kissed the inside of his wrist, as he does to celebrate his goals

There was a period when after such
incidents referees in Germany's Bundesliga asked a player if he had
handled the ball. If the player took the opportunity to admit his guilt,
the goal was ruled out.

If, on the other hand, he denied it,
he could be suspended with the use of video evidence. This would not
need a law change to be introduced here – just a change of disciplinary
code from the Football Association.

Perhaps an overspill from his days
playing in Germany, Miroslav Klose did exactly that when playing for
Lazio in Serie A last year. As a result, the referee disallowed the
goal.

Confession time: Miroslav Klose admitted to handling the ball to score during a Serie A match in September, and the referee Luca Banti duly disallowed the goal

Confession time: Miroslav Klose admitted to handling the ball to score during a Serie A match in September, and the referee Luca Banti duly disallowed the goal

There are of course two other
options; Liverpool could have allowed Mansfield to score straight from
the restart, or the referee could have looked at a replay of the
incident.

As neither of those are likely to
happen in the foreseeable future why not allow the offender the option
to confess and improve everyone’s opinion of modern day professional
footballers

Mario Balotelli will be sold by Manchester City

EXCLUSIVE: Mario must go! City want quick cash deal for Balotelli after Mancini bust-up

By
Ian Ladyman

PUBLISHED:

22:37 GMT, 4 January 2013

|

UPDATED:

23:14 GMT, 4 January 2013

Manchester City are ready to sell Mario Balotelli as soon as possible after Roberto Mancini privately conceded he cannot change the wayward Italy striker.

Despite further claims to the contrary from the City manager, it is understood that Mancini has finally decided it is time to move Balotelli out of the club.

City will not wish to say the 22-year-old is for sale, for fear of driving down his plummeting value even further.

Are you sure you should have that Mario Balotelli returned to training on Friday after his bust-up

Are you sure you should have that Mario Balotelli returned to training on Friday after his bust-up

But with Balotelli now providing virtually nothing on the field — he has scored just one goal this season in the Barclays Premier League — and proving to be a constant distraction behind the scenes, Mancini, having previously stood by the player against the advice of many of his staff, accepts he has done all he can.

Mancini spoke for the first time about the embarrassing scenes that occurred at the end of a City training session on Thursday as the manager and his striker were photographed pushing and shoving each other in front of the astonished first-team squad.

Mancini said he would give Balotelli a ‘hundred chances to change’ and confirmed that the former Inter Milan star would not be fined and would be in the squad for the FA Cup tie with Watford at the Etihad Stadium this afternoon.

Game over: Balotelli will now be sold by Manchester City despite Mancini insisting otherwise (below)

Game over: Balotelli will now be sold by Manchester City despite Mancini insisting otherwise (below)

Glum: Roberto Mancini faces the questions during his Friday press conference

But City are willing to talk to any club who may wish to make an offer. AC Milan are circling but City want a cash sale — not a loan.

This all points to Balotelli staying during the transfer window and being sold in the summer.

On Friday, further details emerged of Balotelli’s assault on team-mate Scott Sinclair that prompted Mancini’s bust-up with Balotelli. Sportsmail understands that Balotelli’s lunge on Sinclair was so wild that Mancini felt compelled to intervene.

‘This was not just a mistimed tackle that you sometimes get towards the end of training,’ a source revealed. ‘This was an horrendous, horrific slash.’

Pals again Balotelli (left) laughs with team-mate Scott Sinclair during training on Friday

Pals again Balotelli (left) laughs with team-mate Scott Sinclair during training on Friday

Meanwhile a separate issue loomed over another City striker when it emerged that Sergio Aguero has split from his wife Giannina, daughter of Diego Maradona, after four years.

It is unclear whether she will live with their three-year-old son Benjamin in Madrid or Buenos Aires, but the news is bound to raise concerns over Aguero remaining settled in Manchester.

Bristol City v Watford abandoned: players dive in water

Water performance! Watford stars bring Christmas cheer to fans after match is abandoned

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UPDATED:

16:38 GMT, 26 December 2012

Watford's players gave their fans something to cheer about on Boxing Day after their npower Championship fixture at Bristol City had been abandoned due to a waterlogged pitch.

With their supporters facing the prospect of completing a 250-mile round trip without seeing a minute of action, Gianfranco Zola's men ran over to their faithful and dived into the water standing on the pitch in front of the stand.

Making a splash: Watford's players dive into the water in front of their fans

Making a splash: Watford's players dive into the water in front of their fans

Making a splash: Watford's players dive into the water in front of their fans

The fixture had been due to kick off at Ashton Gate at 3pm but torrential afternoon rain led to first the game being pushed back to 3.15pm, and then to it being postponed minutes after the rescheduled kick-off time had passed.

The Hornets will be hoping for better luck on Saturday when they travel down to Brighton, while Bristol City welcome Peterborough to Ashton Gate on the same day.

Abandoned: The game will be rescheduled for a later date

Abandoned: The game will be rescheduled for a later date

Abandoned: The game will be rescheduled for a later date