FIFA rules on Scotland game
Scotland will have to play a potentially crucial World Cup qualifier against Norway before the start of the Scottish club season after losing a battle to have the match switched from August to October next year. The Scots agreed last year that they would play in Norway on Aug. 19, but that international date was moved to Aug. 12 at the request of UEFA to accommodate Champions League qualifiers. Scottish officials argued for the match to be switched to October instead, but FIFA has now ruled that the game should go ahead on Aug. 12. Scottish FA chief executive Gordon Smith said: “We’re disappointed with the decision, but at least now the date has been clarified, Scotland supporters can finally make their travel arrangements.”
Darren Anderton retires
Former England international midfielder Darren Anderton announced his retirement on Thursday. The 36-year-old is currently at League Two side Bournemouth and will play his last game against Chester City today. Anderton also played for Portsmouth, Tottenham Hotspur, Birmingham City and Wolverhampton Wanderers and won 30 caps for England. His last appearance will be the 569th game of his club career. “It’s a tough decision and Saturday will be a sad day,” he told the Bournemouth Echo.”
Waratahs lose Wallabies
The New South Wales Waratahs have paid a high price for the Wallabies’ win over the Barbarians on Wednesday, losing front-rowers Matt Dunning and Sekope Kepu for possibly the whole of next year’s Super 14 rugby season. Dunning ruptured an Achilles tendon in the final match of Australia’s European tour and faces six months on the sidelines, while Kepu has torn a pectoral muscle and could have a similar period out of the game, reports said yesterday. Dunning and Kepu slipped when the soft Wembley surface gave way during the same second-half scrum. The Waratahs will also be without Wallaby forwards Dan Vickerman and Rocky Elsom next year as they have left for Europe.
Kenyan player goes missing
Organizers of the Homeless World Cup in Melbourne, Australia, are reportedly trying to find a Kenyan player who has been missing for a week. The man, in his 20s, has not joined his team since arriving in Melbourne on Nov. 28. Steve Persson, executive director of the event, which finishes tomorrow, said it was possible the man may seek asylum. “I guess we’d be naive not to think that it was a possibility,” he told Australian Broadcasting Corp radio. The man, whose name was not released, has an Australian visa that is valid for another two weeks.
Cop injured by brawling fans
A police officer was injured as Paris Saint Germain supporters fought among themselves during the UEFA Cup match at Manchester City. After Wednesday’s 0-0 draw that ended PSG’s hopes of qualifying for the knockout phase, a visiting fan was arrested in downtown Manchester, but later released. Inside the ground, police in protective riot gear clashed with fans and seats were ripped up. “At halftime, a small number of French supporters fought among themselves in the stadium concourse,” police superintendent Steve Nibloe said on Thursday. “During this disturbance, an officer was struck on the back with a metal bin thrown by a supporter. He suffered a minor injury and received first aid at the stadium.”