Nasri in foul-mouthed tirade
Samir Nasri launched a foul-mouthed tirade against a French AFP journalist after France crashed out 2-0 to holders Spain in their quarter-final in Donetsk, Ukraine, on Saturday. The player, who during France’s opening group game with England mouthed “shut your mouth” to television cameras in a message aimed at a L’Equipe journalist who had written a critical article of him that upset his sick mother, lost his cool after the defeat. The journalist asked the Manchester City midfielder in the mixed zone at the Donbass Arena for his assessment of the match, but Nasri declined, then commented that the press always looked “to write about shit.” The reporter said politely in that case he did not want to speak to him, upon which Nasri returned and among a string of foul-mouthed phrases called him a “son of a bitch,” adding: “There you go, now you’ll be able to say I’ve been badly brought up.”
River Plate back in top flight
River Plate returned to the first division on Saturday, a year after they were relegated for the first time in their illustrious history. Former France international striker David Trezeguet scored in the 49th and 89th minutes as River Plate defeated Almirante Brown 2-0. Twelve months ago, River Plate were relegated from the country’s top division for the first time in their 110-year history, amid tears and scenes of violent mayhem. The Buenos Aires team are Argentina’s most successful club with 33 championships to their name and their rivalry with Boca Juniors, based in the same city, is one of the most intense in all sport. “We suffered until today’s match, but we have put River Plate back in the place where they must be,” said coach Matias Almeyda, who broke down in tears at the final whistle. “Today is the end of the difficult time that we and the River fans have experienced. Thanks to the fans, who were with us all the time, for their patience.”
Alan McDonald dies at 48
Former Northern Ireland captain Alan McDonald has died aged 48, the Irish Football Association announced on Saturday. “The Irish FA is saddened by this [Saturday] morning’s news of the sudden death of Alan McDonald,” a statement on the governing body’s Web site said. “Our thoughts are with his family at this time.” The BBC reported the Belfast-born centerhalf had collapsed while playing golf on Saturday morning. McDonald, a stalwart with London club Queens Park Rangers, won 52 caps for his country and was a member of Northern Ireland’s World Cup side in 1986. After his playing days were over, McDonald returned to Loftus Road for a spell as QPR’s assistant manager. In a statement, QPR said they were “desperately saddened to learn of the passing of former captain and assistant manager Alan McDonald.” The defender also managed Glentoran, winning the Irish League title in 2009, and he also coached the Northern Ireland under-21s.
Borini set to stay at Roma
AS Roma have bought the remaining 50 percent of former Chelsea striker Fabio Borini’s contract and now own the player outright, the club said on Saturday. Roma formerly part-owned him with Serie A rivals Parma, but an offer of 4.9 million euros (US$6.14 million) in a sealed envelope bid proved enough to ensure that Borini would stay at the Stadio Olimpico. There had been media speculation in Italy and England that the former Swansea City player could link up again with former coach Brendan Rodgers, who is in charge at Liverpool.