Michel named Kenya coach
Frenchman Henri Michel was on Tuesday named the new national coach of Kenya to succeed Francis Kimanzi, who was fired in June after a string of poor results in the African Cup of Nations and World Cup competitions. The 65-year-old Michel, who has previously coached the national teams of Cameroon, Tunisia, Morocco, Ivory Coast and Equatorial Guinea, beat three other candidates, including countryman and former French coach Raymond Domenech and Belgian Adel Amrouche for the post. His immediate task is to revive the flagging fortunes of the Kenya national team, who have been knocked out of the race for next year’s Africa Cup of Nations, and are sitting precariously in the qualifying rounds of the 2014 World Cup finals in Brazil. Michel is well aware of the tough challenges of turning around the team, who have only collected a single point from their two opening matches.
Stuttgart qualify for Europa
German club Stuttgart qualified for the group phase of the Europa League on Tuesday after a 1-1 draw at Dinamo Moscow gave them a 3-1 aggregate win in their playoff tie. Vedad Ibisevic opened the scoring for the visitors in the 64th minute, with Dinamo — who are bottom of the Russian top flight after six matches — equalizing through Russian international Aleksandr Kokorin with 13 minutes to play. The rest of the play-off round second legs take place today, when Liverpool, Newcastle United, Inter, Lazio, Marseille, Athletic Bilbao and Sporting Lisbon will be among the teams bidding to go through. The draw for the group phase is due to take place in Monaco tomorrow.
Bautista out for surgery
Injury-plagued Toronto Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista will have season-ending surgery on his left wrist, the Major League Baseball (MLB) team said on Tuesday. The two-time defending MLB home run leader aggravated the injury on Saturday in Baltimore just two days after returning from a month-long absence due to inflammation in his wrist. The 31-year-old Dominican Republic native was examined in Cleveland by hand specialist Thomas Graham on Monday and will have surgery sometime next week.
Fulham accept Dembele bid
Fulham midfielder Mousa Dembele is on the verge of joining Tottenham after the west London club revealed they have accepted a bid for the Belgium international. Dembele was missing from Fulham’s squad for their 1-0 League Cup second round defeat at Sheffield and the Cottagers confirmed after the match that the 25-year-old was having a medical with Tottenham. With about ￡33 million (US$52 million) to spend from this week’s sale of Luka Modric to Real Madrid, Dembele, who joined Fulham from AZ Alkmaar in 2010, is seen by Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas as the ideal replacement for the Croatia midfielder.
Cesar deal close: QPR
Queens Park Rangers manager Mark Hughes has revealed his Premier League club are close to completing the surprise signing of Inter goalkeeper Julio Cesar. Cesar helped Italian giants Inter win the Champions League in 2010, but Hughes appears to have persuaded the Brazil international to swap the San Siro for Loftus Road. After Robert Green made a rocky start, Hughes moved for Cesar, who was at the club on Tuesday to discuss terms.