Burst ball results in replay
A Belgian league game between Anderlecht and La Louviere in which the ball burst in during the scoring of a goal will have to be replayed, the Belgian soccer federation ruled Thursday. Anderlecht beat La Louviere 2-1 in a 12th-round match on Nov. 5, rally to equalize in the 65th minute when midfielder Walter Baseggio scored with a drive in which the ball burst. The ball was limp going into the net, but the protests of La Louviere players were rejected. Anderlecht won on a 71st-minute penalty by Par Zetterberg. An initial plea from the club was turned down, but the federation's appeal body accepted La Louviere's complaint on Thursday. It was unclear when the game would have to be replayed. Anderlecht is currently second in the league, seven points behind leader FC Brugge.
Armani to carry the torch
Italian designer Giorgio Armani will be among those who will carry the 2006 Turin Olympic torch, which was officially unveiled in Milan, Italy on Thursday. Organizers said 2002 Olympic ice dancing bronze medalists Barbara Fusar Poli and Maurizio Margaglio also would be among the celebrities and athletes picked to be torchbearers during the flame's trip through the Lombardy region prior to the games. Created and produced by the renowned Pininfarina company of auto designers, the torch will start its journey from Rome on Dec. 8, and arrive in Turin on Feb. 10, 2006 for the Winter Games' opening ceremony. The most striking feature of the 77cm high torch is that the flame is contained within the aluminum shell, covered by cap with holes rather than exposed at the top. With the flame only scheduled to burn for 15 minutes in each torch, about 12,000 torches will be produced for the relay. The first torchbearer will be Athens Olympic marathon champion Stefano Baldini.
Emmanuel Petit to retire
Midfielder Emmanuel Petit, who scored France's third and final goal against Brazil in its 1998 World Cup triumph, has told French media he's retiring. Petit, who left English team Chelsea last year, told French radio station RTL on Thursday that at the age of 34 he no longer feels fit enough to continue his career, especially after suffering a knee injury. "I've earned a lot of money. I have a career rich in achievements," Petit told RTL. "My only regret is to end with an injury, but you have to stop one day." As well as sealing France's 3-0 World Cup win over Brazil on July 12, 1998, Petit was also a member of the French squad that won the European Championships in 2000.