Pig head sparks probe
Stoke City have launched an internal investigation following reports that a pig’s head was found in the locker of one of the team’s players. The Premier League club says it “takes seriously reports of an incident” at its Clayton Wood training ground and “those responsible for any unacceptable behavior will be dealt with in accordance with the club’s disciplinary procedures.” Stoke midfielder Brek Shea posted a picture of him holding a pig’s head, which was severed down the middle, by the ears in the changing room. Shea tweeted “locker room banter gone wild!!!” The British media are reporting that the pig’s head was found in the locker of striker Kenwyne Jones. Another Stoke striker, Michael Owen, was the subject of a prank last week when he tweeted a picture of his car covered in eggs and flour.
Remy could play final game
Queens Park Rangers striker Loic Remy could play in his side’s final game of the season at Liverpool today, despite being investigated over rape allegations, the London club said on Friday. Remy was released on bail after being arrested on suspicion of rape along with three other men over an offense that is alleged to have taken place in London on May 6. The 26-year-old France international denies the claim. QPR manager Harry Redknapp would not discuss the matter during his pre-game press conference on Friday, but a club spokesman said that Remy was in contention to play at Anfield. “With regard to Loic Remy, the club can confirm he’s training today and will be available for selection against Liverpool, but the manager can’t take any questions on him,” the spokesman said. Remy joined QPR from Marseille in January for a club-record fee of ￡8 million (US$12.2 million), but despite scoring six goals since his arrival at Loftus Road, he could not prevent the team’s relegation from the Premier League.
UEFA reduces Malaga ban
European soccer’s governing body has revoked the second year of the ban it had imposed on Malaga for not meeting its financial fair-play regulations. While the club remains barred from European competition next season for failing to pay player wages and taxes on time, the second year of the ban had been lifted, Malaga said on Friday.
Purdy fails to make weight
England’s Lee Purdy failed to make weight for yesterday’s planned welterweight world title fight against champion Devon Alexander, squandering his chance for the crown. Purdy tipped the scales on Friday at 147.8 pounds (67kg), just over the 147-pound limit, while US southpaw Alexander weighed in at 146.7 pounds. As a result, Purdy cannot win the International Boxing Federation title even if he defeats Alexander, 24-1 with 13 knockouts, at Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Hall. Purdy, 20-3 with one draw and 13 knockouts, has won five fights in a row. It was to have been Alexander’s first defense of the crown he took from US compatriot Randall Bailey in October last year. He has won three decisions since suffering his only loss, to Tim Bradley in January of 2011. Alexander’s fight has been cursed with bad luck from the start. He was to have fought England’s unbeaten Kell Brook, 29-0 with 19 knockouts, but a foot injury last month forced Brook to withdraw from the fight, which was earlier delayed by a Brook ankle injury in December last year and a February biceps injury to Alexander.