Riquelme ‘traitor’: Maradona
Diego Maradona has called Juan Roman Riquelme a “traitor” for leaving Boca Juniors, renewing a feud that has gone on for years between the two. Maradona used the term in a radio interview on Wednesday. Riquelme, a former Barcelona and Villarreal playmaker, shocked Boca fans by announcing he was leaving immediately after the club lost to Corinthians earlier this month in the final of the Copa Libertadores — the top club championship in Latin America. When he was coaching Argentina’s national team, Maradona often overlooked Riquelme, declining to call him up for the 2010 World Cup. Riquelme played for Argentina at the 2006 World Cup, leading the team to the quarter-finals under coach Jose Pekerman.
Man U beat Amazulu 1-0
Manchester United began their preseason with a 1-0 win over South African club Amazulu on Wednesday. Federico Macheda scored after 19 minutes at Moses Mabhida Stadium in United’s first game of their two-match tour of South Africa. The record 19-time English champions will play Ajax Cape Town on Saturday, before traveling to China. Macheda swept the ball home powerfully after being played in by Dimitar Berbatov on the left side of the penalty area. United manager Alex Ferguson started midfielders Michael Carrick and Paul Scholes and defender Rio Ferdinand, while new signing and Japan international Shinji Kagawa came off the bench late on for his debut. The game was played on the 94th birthday of former South African president and anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela.
Chelsea beat Sounders 4-2
Young Belgian striker Romelu Lukaku scored twice in the first half and Chelsea newcomers Eden Hazard and Marko Marin scored deflected goals, as the champions of Europe opened their US tour with a 4-2 win over the Seattle Sounders on Wednesday. Lukaku muscled his way to a goal in the third minute, then scored his second goal in the final minute of the first half. It was the first match for Chelsea since the Blues beat Bayern Munich in May to win their first Champions League crown. Seattle’s Fredy Montero scored a pair of goals in the first half, but the Sounders missed a number of good scoring chances early and had few opportunities in the second half.
Capello second choice: Mutko
Fabio Capello is on the verge of becoming Russia’s new coach, but it seems the Italian who won titles with AC Milan and Real Madrid is a second-choice signing for Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko. “I think Capello has all the necessary requirements to coach the Russian national team, [but] personally I would prefer [Jose] Mourinho,” Mutko told Russian state television Rossia 2 on Wednesday. The charismatic Mourinho is one of the most sought after coaches in world soccer, but with the Portuguese committed to staying with Real Madrid, former Russian FA (RFU) chief Mutko hopes Capello will sign a contract within the next two days. “Today or tomorrow we should iron out all the details, so a contract could be signed before the start of the Russian Premier League [on Friday],” Mutko said. Capello, who quit as England manager in February, is set to succeed Dutchman Dick Advocaat, whose contract expired after Russia failed to get past the group phase at Euro 2012.