Lokomotiv rout Rostov
Lokomotiv Moscow inflicted the first league defeat of the season on nine-man Rostov to go three places up to second after thumping the surprise package of the season 5-0 at home on Monday. The result lifted Lokomotiv above third-placed Rostov on goal-difference and left both teams on 13 points from six games, one less than champions CSKA Moscow. Uzbek leftback Vitaly Denisov set up three of the goals as Lokomotiv ran riot in the second half after Ecuadoran striker Felipe Caicedo headed them into a 44th-minute lead thanks to good work by Moroccan midfielder Mbark Boussoufa. Aleksandr Samedov drilled in a penalty in the 53rd minute to make it 2-0 after Caicedo was hauled down by Kamil Agalarov, who was sent off, and Denisov swung in a low cross four minutes later for Brazilian Maicon to sweep in from close range. A brief scuffle broke out between rival players on the hour as Rostov defender Alexandre Lolo was sent off for a second yellow card when he fouled Maicon and Dmitri Tarasov capitalized almost instantly when he headed home a perfect cross by Denisov. The pacy Denisov capped a fine individual performance with another darting run down the left flank in the closing stages, allowing substitute Roman Pavlyuchenko to seal the rout with a scuffed shot.
Injury-prone Deco retires
Deco, the former Barcelona, Porto and Chelsea midfielder, has blamed injury on his decision to retire at the age of 35. The Brazilian-born former Portugal international hung up his boots on Monday with a clutch of titles to his name, including the UEFA Champions League with Porto in 2003-2004 and again two years later with Barcelona. “With a lot of sadness and hurt I am announcing the end of my professional career,” said Deco, who has had a frustrating final season for his Brazilian club Fluminense. Deco, who had a two-year spell with Chelsea from 2008, returned to his homeland in 2010 where he picked up two national league titles with Fluminense. “I’ve been really happy during this time, I wanted to help Fluminense more, but my body won’t allow that, my muscles can no longer put up [with the demands of professional soccer].”
Striker Guerron recalled
Ecuador, afflicted by a sudden shortage of strikers, have recalled China-based Joffre Guerron for World Cup qualifiers away to Colombia and Bolivia next month. Guerron, who plays for Beijing Guoan, comes into coach Reinaldo Rueda’s squad following the sudden death last month in Qatar of Christian Benitez and the suspension of Felipe Caicedo. Caicedo, suspended for the Colombia match in Barranquilla on Sept. 6 after accumulating two bookings, is included as he will be available against Bolivia in La Paz four days later. Rueda has also called up 18-year-old defender Gabriel Corozo for the first time.
Higuain in boating accident
SSC Napoli striker Gonzalo Higuain had 10 stitches inserted in a facial injury following a boating accident on Monday, one day after his competitive debut for the club, Italian media reported. The Argentine striker was reported to have slipped during an excursion to Capri, an island off Italy’s southern coast, and hit his face on the deck, injuring his jaw. He was treated in a hospital on the island and discharged. Higuain will miss Argentina’s World Cup qualifier away to Paraguay on Sept. 10 while he completes a two-match suspension.