Sports – Daily News Egypt Egypt’s Only Daily Independent Newspaper In English Tue, 18 Sep 2018 13:04:21 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Pyramids FC signs Syrian Omar Kharbin on loan Mon, 17 Sep 2018 14:00:45 +0000 Kharbin becomes 12th Syrian player in Egyptian Premier League

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Pyramids FC announced on Saturday reaching a six-month loan deal with Syrian striker Omar Kharbin coming from the Saudi side Al-Hilal, starting this January with the option of purchase by the end of the season.

The 24-year-old Kharbin was the Asian Player of the Year of 2017 and the top scorer of Al-Hilal and the Syrian national team. He was also the top scorer of the Asian Champions League of the same year with 10 goals.

Pyramids, formerly known as Al-Assiouty Sport, made some record signings in the summer after being taken over by the Saudi investor Turki Al-Sheikh, who is the head of Saudi Arabia’s General Sports Authority (GSA). Kharbin, who made his international debut in 2012, was a key element in Syria’s campaign at the 2018 World Cup qualifiers, scoring 10 goals in 17 appearances.

Pyramids are currently second of the Egyptian Premier League table with 12 points from six matches, one point behind leaders Zamalek.

Despite the remarkable career of Kharbin in the Saudi league, the Syrian player brings to mind the disappointing experiences of his nationals in the Egyptian league last season.

Kharbin will be the 12th Syrian footballer to play with different Egyptian clubs, and the second in Pyramids FC after defender Omar Al Midani. The Egyptian Football Association (EFA) passed a series of new laws in August 2017, including a rule that allows each team to register up to two Palestinian/Syrian players as domestic players.

Daily News Egypt reviews Syrian players’ journey in the Egyptian league during last season:

1- Moayad Al Ajan

The Syrian left-back Moayad Al Ajan joined Zamalek SC last season on two seasons-long loan deal from Syrian side Al-Wahda. He scored twice in 16 appearances with Zamalek, before he left during the last summer transfer window. He currently plays for Al-Jazeera in the Jordan Premier League, the top division in Jordan.

2- Alaa Al Shbli

Zamalek signed Syrian Alaa Al Shbli on a three-year deal in 2017. The 27-year-old joined the Whites on a free transfer after his deal at Iraqi side Naft Al-Wasat expired. Al Shbli did not participate with Zamalek in any formal game, before they terminated his contract with mutual consent in January.

3- Abdallah El-Shamy

Al-Ahly SC signed a three-year deal with Syrian defender Abdallah El-Shamy from Lebanese side Safa SC during the 2017 summer transfer window. The 24 year-old joined Al-Ahly during the summer but failed to make any official appearance for the Cairo giants, managing to play just once during the dying minutes of their friendly game against Atletico Madrid. In January, Al-Masry SC announced the signing of El-Shamy on a free transfer with an 18 months long contract, just a couple of days after he was released by the Red Devils. He played only two games with Al-Masry before he left the club.

4- Muayad Al Khouli and Nasouh Al Nakdali

Smouha SC signed two contracts with Syrian duo Muayad Al Khouli and Nasouh Al Nakdali during the last summer transfer window, though the club terminated the deals only four days later, after it found that both players were still linked with their previous clubs, which demanded 30% of the value of the new contracts with Smouha. The Egyptian side rejected the demand and cancelled the players’ deals.

5- Ahmed Berish

El Ittihad El Iskandary SC signed a three-year deal with Syrian left-back Ahmed Samir Berish during the 2017 summer transfer window. Berish make only one appearance with the Egyptian club and scored no gaols. He left the team in January.

6- Mohamad Mido

El Dakhleya FC signed two seasons deal with Syrian Mohamad Mido from El Entag El Harby SC during the summer transfer window, after financial disputes with his previous team. Mido did not make any appearances with El Dakhleya, therefore he decided to cancel his contract after a few months.

7- Rabee Abdullah

Syrian defender Rabea Abdullah joined Raja CA on a free transfer move for two seasons, coming from Syrian side Al-Karamah SC. He made no appearance with Raja, whereby he left the team.

8- Mohamed Hamed and Ali Shabib

El Entag El Harby SC signed the Syrian duo Mohamed Hamed and Ali Shabib last season, but it soon terminated their contracts before they make any appearance with the team.

9- Omar Al Midani

Omar Al Midani currently plays as a centre-back for Pyramids SC. Al Midani joined the Egyptian side during the last summer transfer window, from Dubai’s Hatta SC, but the player has not make any appearances so far.

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Egypt crowned winner of 13th CANA African swimming championships Mon, 17 Sep 2018 13:30:21 +0000 Egypt surpassed South Africa, which dominated in Africa for long, with over 10 gold medals

The post Egypt crowned winner of 13th CANA African swimming championships appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

The Egyptian national swimming team swept the 13th CANA Swimming and Open Water Championships, hosted by Algeria from 10 to 16 September. CANA stands for the African Swimming Association (Confederation Africaine De Natation Amateur). Egyptian swimmers topped the tournament, bagging 44 medals, including 27 gold, 14 silver, and three bronze.

Egypt won the overall cup, and the Egyptian men and women teams were named the best, while Mohamed Samy and Hania Moro clinched the best swimmer cups. Samy secured 11 gold medals, and one bronze.

The Egyptian men’s team won a total of 29 medals, including 18 gold, eight silver, and three bronze. Meanwhile, the women’s team won a total of 17 medals, including 11 gold and six silver.

Egypt surpassed South Africa, which dominated the game in the African continent for a long period, with more than 10 gold medals.

The Egyptian champions are Mohamed Samy (11 gold – one bronze), Marwan El-Kamash (seven gold – one silver), Youssef El-Kamash (three gold – two silver), Ali Khalaf Allah (four gold – two silver), Abdel Rahman Sameh (two gold – one bronze), Ahmed Hamdy Salem (one gold – one bronze), Marwan El-Amrawy (one gold – three silver), Farida Othman (five gold – three silver), Hania Moro (four gold – two silver), Rowida Hesham (one gold – four silver), and Samiha Mohsen (three gold – three silver).

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic scores 500th career goal as remarkable journey continues Mon, 17 Sep 2018 13:00:27 +0000 Ibrahimovic's historic goal came in unique style, as usual, in his side's (Los Angeles Galaxy) defeat against Toronto in the MLS Eastern Conference, which ended 5-3.

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Swedish international football star Zlatan Ibrahimovic joined elite company as the third active player to score 500 career goals across his senior career between club and country.

Ibrahimovic’s historic goal came in unique style, as usual, in his side’s (Los Angeles Galaxy) defeat against Toronto in the MLS Eastern Conference, which ended 5-3.

It was Ibrahimovic’s 17th goal in 18 league appearances for the MLS side as his remarkable career continues. His tally of club goals now stands at 438 including strikes for Malmo, Ajax, Juventus, Inter, Barcelona, PSG, AC Milan, and Manchester United. The 36 year old also has 62 goals for Sweden’s national team.

Ibrahimovic has become the third player to score 500 goals throughout his career after Argentina’s Lionel Messi and Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic 500 career goals

Malmo (1999-2001) – 18

Ajax (2001-2005) – 48

Juventus (2004-2006) – 26

Inter Milan (2006-2009) – 66

Barcelona (2009-2010) – 22

AC Milan (2010-2012) – 56

PSG (2012-2016) – 156

Manchester United (2016-2018) – 29

LA Galaxy (2018-present) – 17

Sweden (2001-2016) – 62


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Formula One: Hamilton keeps his cool in Singapore to open daylight in title race Sun, 16 Sep 2018 14:36:00 +0000 The post Formula One: Hamilton keeps his cool in Singapore to open daylight in title race appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Lewis Hamilton produced a fine drive under the lights in Singapore to move 40 points clear in the championship. The Mercedes driver finished clear of Max Verstappen, while Sebastian Vettel was off the pace in third.Lewis Hamilton held off the challenge of Max Verstappen to win the Singapore Grand Prix and take a huge stride towards a fifth championship title.

Hamilton, who secured pole with a stunning lap on Saturday, was cool in the face of a late surge by Verstappen’s Red Bull, clinching his fourth win at the Singapore night race to move 40 points of his title rival Sebastian Vettel, who endured a frustrating race and was only able to finish third.

Ferrari’s decision to pit Vettel on the 15th lap and put him on the ultrasoft tyres was a tactical call that backfired, and left him unable to drag himself into contention, despite having started second on the grid.

With six races to go, Hamilton is now the red-hot favorite to add to his tally of titles, but he described the race in Singapore, where the humidity was pushing 70 percent, as the “longest of my life”.

“I’m spent! That was a tough race, I have such great support here and we had a great start. The team had never given up faith and belief in me and Valtteri [Bottas]. That was the longest race in my life and it’s a blessing.

“I was a little but unlucky with the traffic, these guys [Grosjean and Sirotkin] were moving and it was difficult to follow. Max was lucky I think, and the guys wouldn’t let me by, my heart was in my mouth but once I got past I could put the pedal down and just had to go.

He added: “The Ferraris put a good fight this weekend but I’m not sure where their pace went in the race.

The next race in the calendar is Sochi on September 30, and victory for Hamilton in Russia would move him even closer to that fifth title.

As it happened:

LEWIS HAMILTON WINS THE SINGAPORE GRAND PRIX! It’s a fine drive by Lewis Hamilton, who keeps his cool to fend off Max Verstappen and extend his championship lead with only six races to go.

Lap 60/61 Hamilton starts his final lap and is about to go 40 points clear of Vettel in the championship.

Lap 59/61 Ricciardo, despite his fast pace and Raikkonen’s brake problems, has been unable to get past the Finn. It looks like it will be sixth for the Australian.

Lap 57/61 Hamilton is now six seconds clear and it seems nothing will get in his way of victory. Vettel, meanwhile, is way off the pace.

Lap 55/61 Back at the front, it’s a straight battle between Hamilton and Verstappen. The Red Bull has little to lose — he may as well risk it all and attack the Mercedes. But Hamilton is just doing his thing and will win as long as he makes no big mistakes.

Lap 53/61 More positive news for Ricciardo as the man in front of him, Kimi Raikkonen, is told to “ignore the brake light for the moment”. If Ricciardo can get past Raikkonen soon, he can have a pop at Bottas for fourth.

Lap 51/61 Ten laps to go and Ricciardo is the man to keep an eye on. The Australian is on the freshest tyres in the top six and has just recorded the fastest lap of the race, eclipsing Alonso.

Lap 49/61 Can Verstappen reach Hamilton? He’s shaved about half a second off the Briton’s lead.

Lap 47/61 Sirotkin is in the thick of the drama in Singapore. He clashes with Brendon Hartley, who tried to overtake him, and the Russian is hit with a five second penalty, which he serves. He then emerges, at last, behind Perez.

Lap 45/61 He may be seventh, but Fernando Alonso has just clocked the fastest lap of the race.

Lap 43/61 At the front, Hamilton leads Verstappen by 3.6 seconds, with the Dutchman still comfortably clear of Vettel.

Lap 41/61 Perez is given a drive-through penalty for his conflict with Sirotkin. The Force India driver has just fulfilled and comes out at the back of the field.

Lap 39/61 Verstappen is close to Hamilton after the Brit got bottled up in traffic. The Red Bull is making eyes for the lead!

Lap 37/61 Hamilton is not happy with his tyres. He thinks they’re too cold and not effective enough. Mercedes calmly tell him to get on with it.

Lap 35/61 It seems as though Perez has some damage to his car, but it seems like it’s just floor damage. So he will get that patched up and return to the race. Hulkenberg benefited from that crash and has darted into 12th.

Lap 34/61 Drama! Sergio Perez tries to get past Sergey Sirotkin, and looks as if he’s finally done it – but the Russian fights back, and they go wheel to wheel! There’ s a bang as they collide, and Perez has some damage.

Lap 33/61 Williams to Sergey Sirotkin: “Perez is starting to come under attack from behind. Keep doing what you’re doing. You’re doing a great job.”

Lap 31/61 Force India have not been much of a force today. First Perez shunts his teammate Ocon out on the opening lap and now Perez is moaning down the radio about some traffic. “This is a joke, really,” Perez says, fuming at Sirotkin in front of him.

Lap 29/61 Almost halfway through and here’s how things stand: Hamilton leads Verstappen by five seconds, with Vettel languishing in third. Bottas is fourth, with his Finnish compatriot, Räikkönen, fifth.

Lap 27/61 Ricciardo finally pits. It’s a pacey stop — just 2.3 seconds — but he rejoins in sixth ahead of Fernando Alonso. Hamilton has clear track in front of him for the first time in a while.

Lap 25/61 It has started to drizzle in Singapore, which could make things interesting.

Lap 23/61 Raikkonen pits to leave Ricciardo out in front, by virtue of the fact that he is yet to pit.

Lap 21/61 Red Bull tell Verstappen that Vettel believes his tyres will not last. “You know what to do,” is the message.

Lap 19/61 Raikkonen is the new race leader and RIcciardo is three seconds behind him — but neithe have pitted. Hamilton is in third, Verstappen in fourth and Vettel fifth. For now.

Lap 17/61 Verstappen follows him in, and moves from the super soft to soft tyres. He emerges from the pit lane just ahead of Vettel.

Lap 16/61 Vettel is first to pit, stopping for just 2.7 seconds.

Lap 14/61 Lewis Hamilton, who leads Sebastian Vettel by 2.3 seconds, has just set a new fastest lap of 1:44.929. The Mercedes is flying.

Lap 12/61 “The car is really good,” says Verstappen. “Really good.” Just in case he gets too excited, Red Bull reminds him of “the plan” and that it’s “a long race”.

Lap 10/61 Hamilton sets the fastest lap, a 1:46.746 that increases his lead slightly to 1.2 seconds.

Lap 9/61 Some words of caution from the Red Bull radio to Verstappen. “OK Max, you know what to do on the tyres.”

Lap 8/61 At the front, Hamilton is in control. Just behind him Verstappen is sticking very close to Vettel, who is being pressured by the Red Bull driver.

Lap 7/61 Perez will not receive a time punishment for his role in Ocon#s frash, which seems quite generous.

Lap 6/61 Ocon talks to Sky Sports about the incident that saw his race end early. “I think everyone saw what happened,” Ocon tells the reporter. “I’m not going to comment yet. I want to see the images. So we’ll see.”

Lap 4/61 The safety car has made way and we’re back racing. Quite a lengthy stop as the significant amount of debris was cleared from the track.

Lap 2/61 Ocon walks away but his car is ruined. The complete front-right suspension is gone. It was his teammate Perez who made contact with Ocon!

Lap 1/61 GO GO GO! We’re underway in Singapore! A somewhat chaotic start but Hamilton is clear at the front. Sparks flying out the back of Vettel and Verstappen’s cars as Vettel overtakes the Dutchman with a really neat move to take second place! But the safety car is out after Esteban Ocon smashes into a wall.

14.05 We’re five minutes away from lights out. The warm-up lap is just about ready to get underway.

14.00 Lewis Hamilton, the favorite to win today’s race, secured pole position with what has been described as an “epic” final lap on Saturday. Click this link for more on that.

13.55 It’s 29 degrees in Singapore just ahead of this night race, and how the drivers can deal with that heat and humidity, which is almost at 70%, will prove one of the biggest challenges.

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Blind footballer wins German goal of the month award for first time Sat, 15 Sep 2018 19:08:00 +0000 The post Blind footballer wins German goal of the month award for first time appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

German weekend sports show Sportschau has awarded its “Tor des Monats” award to a blind footballer. St. Pauli’s Serdal Celebi found the top corner with his left foot in the final of the Bundesliga for the blind.Serdal Celebi didn’t taste victory in the final game of Germany’s Bundesliga for the blind on August 25, as MTV Stuttgart defeated St. Pauli 2-1.

However, the 34-year-old probably didn’t expect his fine individual effort to end up nominated for the goal of the month award on long-running weekend sports roundup show Sportschau.

Celebi dribbled into space before squeezing a left-footed shot through a crowd of defenders into the top corner.

“I’m hugely happy to have scored the goal of the month. It’s historic for blind football. Heartfelt thanks to all who supported me and gave me their votes,” Celebi said, as quoted by his club after the announcement on Saturday evening.

The “Tor des Monats” format will be familiar to viewers around much of the world; broadcaster ARD selects a shortlist of goals each month and airs them in advance of the result, inviting viewers to vote for their favorite. The goal with the most votes wins. St. Pauli, a second division club with an unusually large reach and a cult reputation, sought to drum up support online.

From the Bundesliga, Hertha Berlin’s Marvin Plattenhardt and Freiburg’s Mike Frantz made this month’s shortlist.

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Bayern Munich recover from early shock to beat ten-man Bayer Leverkusen Sat, 15 Sep 2018 13:18:00 +0000 The post Bayern Munich recover from early shock to beat ten-man Bayer Leverkusen appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

After a furious start in which the visitors took a shock lead from the spot, Bayern took full control against Bayer Leverkusen and took all three points thanks to goals from Corentin Tolisso, Arjen Robben and James.Bayern Munich 3-1 Bayer Leverkusen
(Tolisso 10′, Robben 19′, James 89′ – Wendell pen 5′)

Goals from Corentin Tolisso, Arjen Robben and James Rodriguez turn the game around for Bayern after Leverkusen took an early lead from the spot through Wendell.

The visitors were reduced to ten men in the second half when Karim Bellarabi saw a straight red for a foul on Rafinha after being on the pitch for less than ten minutes.

Heiko Herrlich’s team never looked like getting back in the game and find themselves bottom of the Bundesliga with three defeats from three – nowhere near good enough for a club with Champions League aspirations.

As it happened:

Wolfsburg 2-2 Hertha Berlin
Mainz 2-1 Augsburg
RB Leipzig 3-2 Hannover
Fortuna Düsseldorf 2-1 Hoffenheim

90+4′ FULL TIME: Bayern Munich 3-1 Bayer Leverkusen

90+3′ Meanwhile in Mainz …

90+3′ A question we’re all asking ourselves!

90′ There will be four minutes of added time.

89′ GOAL! Bayern Munich 3-1 Bayer Leverkusen (James)
And we have a late goal in Munich, too. Robben feeds Thiago who chips back into the box from the by-line for James to head home Bayern’s third. 3-1, game over.

87′ There has been a flurry of late goals around the country! See the live scores above!

82′ Substitution for Bayer Leverkusen: Leon Bailey is replaced by Paulinho
Heiko Herrlich replaces a forward with a midfielder. It looks like Leverkusen are just going to settle for not getting hammered.

82′ Substitution for Bayern Munich: Rafinha is replaced by David Alaba
The Brazilian cannot continue and is helped off the pitch.

80′ RED CARD – Karim Bellarabi (Bayer Leverkusen)
He’s not even been on the field for ten minutes but Bellarabi sees a straight red for stamping down on Rafinha’s heel. That was dangerous and the Leverkusen man can have no complaints.

78′ Brandt has moved up front as a loan front man for Leverkusen, with Bellarabi and Bailey on the wings. But Leverkusen will need to get hold of the ball if they’re to do anything in the final stages.

76′ Otherwise, there’s very little going on here! Bayern are still moving the ball around, Leverkusen sat deep, and the Bayern fans are singing about the European Cup – they travel to Lisbon on Wednesday to face Benfica.

73′ Substitution for Bayer Leverkusen: Kevin Volland is replaced by Karim Bellarabi

65′ A quick look at the stats: Bayern have had 11 shots to Leverkusen’s two, plus over 70% possession. One way traffic.

63′ Lewandowki dances around looking for space in the box and finally gets a shot away, but defenders throw themselves in the way.

54′ Robben again cuts in from the right and appeals for handball against Sven Bender – but the ball hit the Leverkusen defender on the shoulder and referee waves play on.

53′ Anti-DFB chants echo back and forth between the Bayern Munich ultras in the Südkurve and the Leverkusen fans in the away end.

47′ And Bayern’s first chance of the second half comes straight away as Gnabry heads towards goal. Hradecky saves but the flag was up for offside anyway.

We’re back underway in Munich

HALF-TIME: Bayern Munich 2-1 Bayer Leverkusen
After a furious start in which the visitors took a shock lead from the spot, Bayern have taken full control of proceedings and lead thanks to a stroke of individual genius from Arjen Robben. Less positively, Corentin Tolisso has been taken off injured.

43′ Boateng plays in Lewandowski with a penetrative through-ball from the back. The Pole tries to flick the ball on to James but Leverkusen can clear.

41′ Substitution for Bayern Munich: Corentin Tolisso is replaced by James Rodriguez
The Frenchman can’t continue and hobbles off to be replaced by James.

39′ Tolisso is down following a clash of knees with Volland. Whether he’s twisted something or it’s just a painful coming-together, is still unclear …

38′ Volland gets a chance to stretch his legs down the left and crosses low but Boateng clears before the ball can reach Leon Bailey.

32′ After Wendell loses possesion in the left-back position, Müller immediately feeds Robben who cuts inside onto his left foot but curls a shot just wide. A textbook transition from Bayern. Leverkusen will be happy if they can get to half-time just one goal behind and regroup for the second half.

30′ Hradecky pulls off a good save from Thomas Müller’s long-range effort.

28′ Substitution for Bayer Leverkusen: Lars Bender is replaced by Julian Brandt
Bender seems to have picked up a knock and Herrlich opts for an offensive change.

26′ When faced with two lines of defenders, sometimes you have to rely on moments of individual quality and that’s exactly what Bayern have done here. Leverkusen can’t get out of their own half as Bayern spread the ball around, making their opponents run and tiring them out. Down on the touchline, Heiko Herrlich motions for his team to move up the field.

19′ GOAL! Bayern Munich 2-1 Bayer Leverkusen (Robben)
Tah heads Kimmich’s cross straight into the path of Arjen Robben. In one fluid motion, the Dutchman flicks the ball up with his first touch before smashing an unstoppable volley into the top corner with his second. That was pure class, pure and simple.

18′ After that action-packed start, Leverkusen have settled into a defensive 5-4-1 formation, allowing Bayern to have possession (81% of it!) and hoping, presumably, to catch them on the counter-attack.

10′ GOAL! Bayern Munich 1-1 Bayer Leverkusen (Tolisso)
Tolisso drives into the box but his first effort bounces back off Jonathan Tah and straight back into the Frenchman’s path. This time, he makes no mistake and fires Bayern level.

5′ GOAL! Bayern Munich 0-1 Bayer Leverkusen (Wendell – pen)
Wendell fires home to Manuel Neuer’s left and Leverkusen have an early lead … but let’s take a look at what’s happened:
The original penalty was given correctly when Kevin Volland’s cross struck Thiago’s raised arm in the box. Volland stepped up himself but saw his weak shot easily saved by Neuer.

But referee Tobias Welz ordered the kick to be retaken – also a correct decision with four or five Bayern players having encroached into the box.

This time, Wendell took responsibility and made no mistake. What a start.



2′ Bayern’s first venture forward comes down the right with Thomas Müller and Arjen Robben but Leverkusen clear.

We’re underway in Munich – and across the day’s other games.

Bayer Leverkusen team news

Goalkeeper Lukas Hradecky makes his first appearance for his new club, but Julian Brandt starts on the bench.

Robert Lewandowski makes his 200th competitive appearance for Bayern Munich.

Bayern Munich team news

Serge Gnabry makes his first start for Bayern on the left of a front three. Corentin Tolisso gets the nod in front of the back four while Niklas Süle starts alongside Jerome Boateng at the back. After his midfield role for Germany against France in the same stadium, Joshua Kimmich returns to full-back.

Leon Goretzka and Mats Hummels are not in the squad, but it’s only precautionary.

— GUTEN TAG! Welcome to DW’s live coverage of Matchday 3 in the Bundesliga! —
The Bundesliga returned after the international break as Borussia Dortmund beat Eintracht Frankfurt 3-1, new loan signing Paco Alcacer starring for the Black and Yellows. Today, Bayern Munich, Bayer Leverkusen and RB Leipzig are all action, while Gladbach welcome Schalke later on.

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Bundesliga live: Borussia Dortmund vs. Eintracht Frankfurt Fri, 14 Sep 2018 17:17:00 +0000 The post Bundesliga live: Borussia Dortmund vs. Eintracht Frankfurt appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Lucien Favre’s Dortmund will hope to bounce back after dropping points away to Hannover last weekend. Jacob Bruun Larsen gets a chance from the start, while Axel Witsel is rested after international duty with Belgium.24′

18′ Gacinovic clips Schmelzer’s heels and gets a talking-to from the ref, but no card.

6′ Filip Kostic with the first serious shot of the night, fed by a lovely diagonal through ball from Gacinovic that completely wiped Lukasz Piszczek out of contention. Kostic’s driven shot was meat and drink for Roman Bürki though.

3′ Nasty early knock for Marcel Schmelzer. The Dortmund left-back is playing his 350th game in all competitions for the club tonight.

Kick off!

— Jacob Bruun Larsen, surprise starter tonight for BVB, is coming off the back of a four-goal game in a friendly against VfL Osnabrück during the international break. He netted all his goals before half time.

— Just a few minutes to go until the game begins. Bavarian Benjamin Cortus will be in charge of tonight’s match. Meanwhile, “You’ll Never Walk Alone” rings around the Signal-Iduna Park.

— Some surprises in the Dortmund XI as well. Jacob Bruun Larsen gets a start in attacking midfield, Maximilian Philipp looks like he’s starting up top, while Delaney and Dahoud will marshal the midfield. And Dortmund’s bench is notably strong, with Axel Witsel, Mario Götze Paco Alcacer and Jadon Sancho all riding the pine.

— Time for the starting line-ups, with an hour to go until kick-off. Sebastian Haller leads the line for Frankfurt, with Mijat Gacinovic, Filip Kostic and Marco Fabian behind him.

— Historical stats also don’t provide too many clues on form. Dortmund have won their last seven at home against Frankfurt, but the Eagles haven’t lost in 11 Friday evening Bundesliga matches.

— Dortmund only drew 0-0 at Hannover last weekend, while Frankfurt lost at home to Bremen. So both clubs have points to prove.

— Welcome to DW’s live coverage of the Friday evening Bundesliga fixture. Matchday 3 kicks off with the German Cup holders visiting arguably the toughest challengers to Bayern Munich this season.

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Bundesliga: Surprise packages meet after taking different roads Fri, 14 Sep 2018 13:55:00 +0000 The post Bundesliga: Surprise packages meet after taking different roads appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

That Bayern Munich are one of three teams with maximum points is no surprise, but the identity of the other two is. Wolfsburg and Hertha Berlin have taken very different paths but both have impressed early in the season.Though only an hour’s train journey separates their two cities, Hertha Berlin and Wolfsburg are two very different clubs.

Under Pal Dardai, the capital city outfit have become a byword for stability and solidity, the very qualities Saturday’s opponents have lacked in recent years. Since Dardai took the coaching reins at Hertha in 2015, the Wolves have gone through five coaches, the Volkswagen emissions crisis and the sales of Kevin de Bruyne and Julian Draxler.

Read more: Labaddia more than just a fire fighter at Wolfsburg

They’ve also registered a memorable first leg win over Real Madrid in the Champions League knockout stages and survived two relegation playoffs in that period. Comments made this week by Jörg Schmadtke, Wolfsburg’s managing director in charge of sport to news agency SID, revealed something of the tug-of-war between the rich upstarts who won the Bundesliga in 2009 and the German Cup in 2015 and the financially straitened club of the last two seasons.

Seeking stability

“We always have the desire to be a serious Bayern hunter,” Schmadtke said, before tempering those words almost immediately. “First of all, we need to stabilize ourselves a lot, and to talk about European competition after two matchdays is a bit too fast for me.”

A little over 200 kilometers (124 miles) to the east, European qualification has been achieved in two of the last three seasons. Finishes of seventh, sixth and 10th in Dardai’s three full seasons in charge have been built on a foundation of defensive organization, discipline and hard work, with the Hungarian coach always preaching team values above all else.

Hertha have conceded an average of 45 goals a season (or just 1.3 per game) in that time frame and the Olympic Stadium has become a daunting away trip. BSC have started in similar fashion this term, with wins over Nuremburg and Schalke meaning they are the only top-flight side yet to concede.

New dimensions

But the victory over last season’s runners-up – though something of a smash and grab – did showcase the attacking evolution of Dardai’s side. The muscular stylings of Vedad Ibisevic and the pace of Salomon Kalou remain, but in Valentino Lazaro and Ondrej Duda, Hertha have two young attackers capable of big things.

Austrian winger Lazaro slipped through the Leipzig net when joining Hertha from Red Bull Salzburg in 2017. An exciting dribbler with a dangerous cross, the 22-year-old adds an unpredictable dimension Hertha have often lacked.

Duda (pictured top, left), 23, scored both in the win in Gelsenkirchen. He operates a little further back in the middle of the park and endured a difficult start to life in Germany, with injuries ruling him out of almost the whole 2016-17 campaign and significant chunks of last term. But a full preseason and 90 minutes in each of Hertha’s three games (two league, one cup) this season have enabled the Slovakian schemer to come to suggest his intelligent passing can make Hertha tick.

“Everyone is happy for Ondrej because he had a tough year last year,” said Lazaro of his teammate. “Our game plan suited him perfectly. His job was to disrupt [Sebastian] Rudy’s build-up play. We also knew he had a lot of quality and after today’s performance we know he won’t giving up his place easily.”

Aiming to keep spirits high

Wolfsburg head coach Bruno Labaddia acknowleged both Hertha’s solidity and attacking improvement in his pre-match press conference, while also expressing his delight at how well his team – who have now won their last six matches – have “clicked” since the tail end of last season. He doesn’t want to lose that momentum.

“I’m not a huge fan of putting a dampener on things when the atmosphere is good,” he said. “We don’t look like taking our foot off the gas, and two victories give us every reason to go into the game with great excitement.”

If either side manages to extend their perfect record on Saturday afternoon, expectations may prove very difficult to contain.

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Germany’s Jan Frodeno to miss ironman worlds after injury Wed, 12 Sep 2018 11:47:00 +0000 The post Germany’s Jan Frodeno to miss ironman worlds after injury appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Jan Frodeno, a two-time world champion in the ironman triathlon, will not compete in this year’s event. After winning the Ironman70.3 title last week, he was one of the favorites to win in Hawaii.Two-time winner and top favorite Jan Frodeno on Wednesday announced will not compete in the ironman world championship in Hawaii next month.

Frodeno, 37, posted a picture of his MRI and an photograph of him on crutches on his Instagram account, where he said he had suffered a hairline fracture to one of his hips. His manager told German news agency DPA that it was unclear how he suffered the injury.

The Cologne native won the ironman world championship in 2015 and 2016. Last week, he picked up his second Ironman 70.3 world title, and he finished second in July’s Ironman European Championship in Frankfurt.

“Certainly not how I hoped this season would end,” Frodeno said on Instagram. “The highs and lows of sport have never been so close for me — winning the world title last week and being sidelined for the season the next. Just a reminder to all of us that success never comes in a straight line.”

The 40th Hawaii Ironman takes place on October 13. A German has won the world championship each of the last four years, with Sebastian Kienle taking the title in 2014 and Patrick Lange earning it last year. The ironman involves a 3.9-kilometer (2.4 mile) swim, a 180.2-kilometer cycle and a 42.2-kilometer run.

dv/pfd (dpa, SID)

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Kristina Vogel: ‘It’s more difficult than the battle for an Olympic gold medal’ Wed, 12 Sep 2018 11:16:00 +0000 The post Kristina Vogel: ‘It’s more difficult than the battle for an Olympic gold medal’ appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Two-time Olympic cycling champion Kristina Vogel has given her first press conference since a training accident left her paralyzed. She described the process of adjusting to her disability as her toughest-ever battle.Kristina Vogel appeared upbeat as she rolled into Wednesday’s press conference in the Berlin hospital.

She is being treated for injuries suffered in a collision with another rider during training on a track in the eastern city of Cottbus in June. The crash left her paralyzed from the waist down.

The 27-year-old native of Kirgizstan said she was deeply touched by the outpouring of sympathy following the crash, but she also described her first few weeks in hospital as the most difficult of her entire life.

“I had never had to fight such difficult battles,” she said. “These are battles with a different sort of motivation… It’s more difficult than the battle for an Olympic gold medal.”

She also said she suffered a lot of pain in the days and weeks that followed the accident, but that she was now pain free.

Vogel compared herself to “a little baby who has to learn everything,” but admitted that, almost three months after the accident, she had come to terms with her fate and now wanted to face the world and spread her positive energy.

Learning to express emotions

“Why should I feel sorry for myself?” she asked. However, she did concede that she struggled emotionally, particularly in the early days after her accident.

“I had to learn to allow the tears to come. I was never somebody who cried a lot,” she said. “I hated women’s films that end in weddings. I had to learn to express emotions.”

She credited her partner and her family with helping her get through the most difficult days and continuing to supporter her through the process of recovery.

Vogel also said felt lucky to be in the situation she is in, because given how serious the crash was, it “could have been much worse for me.”

She said she had no recollection of the crash whatsoever, and that she was glad this was the case. However, she did say that it was important to find out what had caused the collision for her peace of mind.

Quickly sensed loss of use of legs

Vogel also said knew just minutes after the crash that she had lost the use of her legs.

“When my shoes were taken off and I only realized it afterwards, that’s when I knew that my days as a pedestrian were over,” she said. This, she added, made things easier for her when the doctors confirmed the diagnosis, as she had already given up hope of being able to walk again.

Quick learner

Her focus now, she said, was entirely on learning how to do things she took for granted while she still had the use of her legs, and her doctors said that she was making swift progress in learning how to deal with a wheelchair.

One of her doctors told reporters that she has been able to move independently from her bed to her wheelchair and vice versa since a week ago, a development that normally comes much later in a patient’s recovery.

“If you believe in it, you can achieve it, she said. “My first goal is to learn to go down flights of stairs in a wheelchair.”

‘I’d have loved to have won a 12th world championship’

She also hinted at a possible career in disabled sports.

“Ten years after my first, great, world championship, I would have loved to have won a 12th medal,” she said… Perhaps I’ll win my 12th medal in something else. I’ll certainly develop new goals that I can work towards.

Vogel won Olympic gold in the team sprint at the London Velodrome in 2012 and individual sprint gold in Rio de Janeiro four years later. She is also an 11-time world champion.

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‘Ignorant, arrogant, unprofessional’: German fans lift lid on DFB negotiations Tue, 11 Sep 2018 14:58:00 +0000 The post ‘Ignorant, arrogant, unprofessional’: German fans lift lid on DFB negotiations appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

After official talks between the German Football Association and a national coalition of fan groups broke down, two of the supporters involved have criticized the DFB’s approach in an interview with a BVB fanzine.The German Football Association (DFB) and German Football League (DFL) have been accused of ignorance, arrogance, disinterest, poor communication and a lack of organization in their official talks with football supporters, which broke down last month.

After a year of fan protests in German football against the perceived over-commercialization of the game, kicked off by a dramatic “declaration of war” by Dynamo Dresden supporters in Karlsruhe last May, the DFB agreed to enter into a dialogue with the Fanszenen Deutschlands, a national coalition of fan groups. But discussions broke down after just two meetings with supporters unconvinced about the associations’ willingness to act.

Now, in an interview with independent Borussia Dortmund fanzine Schwatzgelb, two BVB supporters who were involved in the talks have described how the discussions were arranged, what they entailed and what was achieved — or rather not achieved.

“Publicly, they say they’re open to discussions but ultimately they just string you along and don’t have any interest in actually discussing any topics,” said Christian, a member of the The Unity, the largest ultra group on Dortmund’s Südtribüne.

“The talks were very bureaucratic with a list of speakers who needed to register before being called up to speak,” said Nicolai, also a member of The Unity and contributor to Schwatzgelb, adding that half of the time in two meetings in Frankfurt and Cologne was swallowed up by lengthy introductory speeches by DFB President Reinhard Grindel and DFL President Reinhard Rauball.

Read more: ‘Football needs to decide what its fans are worth’

‘Far removed from the grassroots’

“You have the press officer who doesn’t say a word for four hours, social workers who don’t contribute anything and Herr Grindel sits around playing on his phone while you speak to him. It’s nothing like a normal conversation. You end up asking yourself: ‘Why am I still here? Why don’t I just go home?’ It was anything but satisfactory.”

Initial contact came when representatives of over 30 fan groups from across the country unexpectedly attended a meeting between the DFB and Dynamo Dresden ultras in July 2017, initially intended to discuss the incidents in Karlsruhe and attended by DFB vice-president Rainer Koch and security chief Hendrik Große-Lefert. Instead, the fans listed all the issues they wanted to talk about.

“It wasn’t really a discussion,” the fans admit. “We used the meeting to list every single issue because we would otherwise never have had the chance. Koch was utterly ignorant and arrogant — he is so far removed from the grassroots.”


Additional meetings were subsequently arranged in Frankfurt and Cologne, but the supporters say even setting these dates proved difficult.

“Unless you repeat your request, you don’t get a response,” they recall. “The DFB isn’t particularly well-structured. You send an email to Grindel, Koch and Große-Lefert and then it goes to however many sub-divisions and information trickles away.

“We’re doing all this voluntarily, producing concepts in our spare time and then we don’t hear anything for three months from a full-time organization. It’s not a good sign; it’s unprofessional.”

When the associations did respond with a presentation of their own, the supporters say it was full of “nothing topics and platitudes” which “led to considerable irritation,” while the presentation itself was sloppily put together.

“The content and the editing was weak and the lay-out was a catastrophe with figures not even in the right places,” they remember. “When we enter a dialogue respectfully and on an equal footing, we at least expect a similarly detailed approach from the opposite side. But we didn’t get the impression Herr Koch, Herr Grindel, Herr Rauball or Herr Seifert had even seen our presentation.”

DFB ‘regret’

When approached for comment by DW, the DFB referred to a statement released jointly with the DFL last week, in which they expressed their “regret” at the supporters’ decision to withdraw from talks, “especially given that the intensive and critical exchanges last winter had been considered open and constructive.”

“The DFB and the DFL remain open to an exchange of opinions and ideas with supporter groups,” the statement continued. “However, any exchange must be objective and fact-based. Generalized accusations against the federations or individuals are not productive.”

Further protests

When the new season got underway last month with the first round of the German Cup, supporters across the country addressed the DFB with banners reading: “You will hear from us!” But the Borussia Dortmund supporters wouldn’t be drawn on what form that communication will take.

“We all have jobs and we all have private lives,” they said. “We want to change things but the form of dialogue has to change. We’re definitely flexible and creative.”

The interview was conducted by Borussia Dortmund fanzine Schwatzgelb and can read in full (in German) at

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Kimi Raikkonen to be replaced by Ferrari protégé in 2019 Tue, 11 Sep 2018 09:43:00 +0000 The post Kimi Raikkonen to be replaced by Ferrari protégé in 2019 appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Two Formula One teams have announced that they are about to swap drivers, with Ferrari getting much younger and Sauber gaining vast experience. The moves are to take place at the end of the current season.The Alfa Romeo Sauber Formula One team announced on Tuesday that Kimi Raikkonen would join the team for the 2019 season on a two-year deal. This came just minutes after Ferrari announced that the veteran Finnish driver would “step down” at the end of 2018.

In its statement announcing the hiring, Sauber’s team principal, Frederic Vasseur, said that with his experience, Raikkonen would “not only contribute to the development of our car, but will also accelerate the growth and development of our team as a whole.”

The 38-year-old Raikkonen has started in 287 F1 races, winning 20 since his debut with Sauber in 2001. He subsequently had spells at McLaren, Ferrari and Lotus before rejoining Ferrari in 2014. It was during his first stint with Ferrari, in 2007, that Raikkonen won his only Formula One drivers’ championship. He also left F1 in 2010 to spend two years in the World Rally Championship.

His replacement at Ferrari is to be a member of the Italian outfit’s driving academy, 20-year-old Charles Leclerc, who has been driving for Sauber this season, his first in Formula One.

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Diego Maradona’s new job in Mexico’s drug-cartel heartland Mon, 10 Sep 2018 12:46:00 +0000 The post Diego Maradona’s new job in Mexico’s drug-cartel heartland appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Diego Maradona has taken up his duties as coach of a Mexican second-division outfit. The World Cup winner as a player has had little success in coaching, and some see his appointment as a publicity stunt.Diego Maradona (pictured above) arrived in Culiacan, the capital of the northwestern Mexican state of Sinaloa, to a hero’s welcome on Saturday, and was to be officially unveiled and hold his first training session with his new club, Dorados de Sinaloa, later on Monday.

Six games into the Mexican second division season, Dorados are still without a win and find themselves languishing in 13th place in the 15-team Ascenso MX.

Still, the ever self-confident Maradona, decked out in a Dorados baseball cap and scarf, pledged upon his arrival to get the team into the top flight.

“The goal is to earn promotion to the first division, but this can’t be achieved without making sacrifices,” the 57-year-old Argentine told sports broadcaster ESPN.

However, few expect Maradona to be able to live up to that promise. His success since entering coaching in 1994 has been limited. He led Argentina to the quarterfinals in the 2010 World Cup before spending time at the club level with Al Wasl and Al-Fujairah in the United Arab Emirates.

Drug cartel stronghold

Maradona’s battles with drug abuse are also well documented, and his new club happens to be located in a state that is mainly known for being the home of the Sinaloa drug cartel. Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman operated the cartel until he was extradited to the United States in 2017, where his is to face trial on a number of criminal charges.

“We want Culiacan and Sinaloa to be talked about for other things,” said Jose Antonio Nunez, the president of Dorados.

But compounding concerns about Maradona’s coaching skills is the erratic behavior he displayed at the 2018 World Cup in Russia. Attending matches as a spectator, he was captured on video having to be helped out of his seat and into a luxury box, or thrusting both middle fingers into the air as Argentina beat Nigeria.

Tom Marshall, who covers Mexican soccer for ESPN sports network, told the Associated Press that while the appointment will certainly help put the club on the map, of its fans fear it may simply be an “ego trip” for the owners.

World Cup memories

Maradona’s new job marks a return to the country where he celebrated his greatest footballing triumph, scoring five goals to lead Argentina to the 1986 World Cup title. It was during this run that he scored one of the most controversial goals in World Cup history, his “hand of God” goal against England in the quarterfinals. However, he followed that up a few minutes later with a solo run past several England players to score the winner, a goal that has been dubbed the “goal of the century.”

pfd/dv (AP, dpa)

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Serena Williams receives WTA backing over sexism claim Mon, 10 Sep 2018 09:21:00 +0000 The post Serena Williams receives WTA backing over sexism claim appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

The WTA has come out in support of Serena Williams in her claim that she was the victim of sexism in the women’s US Open final. The American superstar was assessed a coaching violation in her match against Naomi Osaka.In a statement released late on Sunday local time, the World Tennis Association (WTA) CEO Steve Simon said men and women must be treated equally on the tennis court.

“The WTA believes that there should be no difference in the standards of tolerance provided to the emotions expressed by men vs. women and is committed to working with the sport to ensure that all players are treated the same,” the statement read.

“We do not believe that this was done last night.”

Simon was referring to the treatment of Serena Williams in her 6-2, 6-4 defeat to Naomi Osaka on Saturday, in which she was assessed a coaching violation, was penalized a point for racket abuse and then a game for verbally abusing umpire Carlos Ramos and calling him a “thief.”

On Sunday, the US Open referee’s office fined Williams, 36, a total of $17,000 (€14,700) for the three code violations during her loss to Osaka in the final.

Williams defended her sexism claim in a post-match press conference, arguing that men can get away with things women can’t when they complain or misbehave on the court.

WTA ‘supports coaching’

During the final, Williams had initially been incensed by the violation for coaching, which she received after the umpire spotted her coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, making hand signals to her.

Williams insisted she hadn’t seen his signals and had never even called for on-court coaching during WTA matches in which it is allowed. While WTA rules do permit coaching, it is not allowed at Grand Slam events. Moratoglou later admitted that he had indeed been coaching but said that Osaka’s coach had doing the same.

In Sunday’s statement, Simon said the WTA believed coaching should be allowed across the sport.

“The WTA supports coaching through its on-court coaching rule, but further review is needed,” he said.

Into the top 10

Meanwhile, Osaka, 20, has climbed into the top 10 of the WTA’s singles rankings for the first time, surging 12 places to go seventh. The latest rankings, published on Monday, saw Williams move up 10 places to 16 as she continues her comeback from maternity leave.

pfd/dv (dpa, AP, AFP)

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How Germany’s players rated against Peru Sun, 09 Sep 2018 21:40:00 +0000 The post How Germany’s players rated against Peru appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Joachim Löw’s side ended their September internationals on a high note, coming from behind to beat Peru 2-1 in a friendly. Nico Schulz shone on his debut but some of the old guard were less impressive.Marc-Andre ter Stegen — 4

The Barcelona goalkeeper was beaten at his near post by Luis Avincula in the first half, but made a strong double save off a corner in the second. If he wants to surpass Manuel Neuer and become Germany’s number one, he cannot allow cheap goals.

Read more: Marc-André ter Stegen ready to lead Barcelona

Nico Schulz — 7

The Hoffenheim defender worked hard on his Germany debut, doing his best to stick with Peru’s quick wingers. He was partly responsible for Avincula’s goal, missing a tackle, but he made up for it by scoring the winner.

Jerome Boateng — 5

It was a rather uneventful game for the Bayern Munich man, but he didn’t make any mistakes and stepped up to help Germany maintain possession.

Niklas Süle — 6

He had problems dealing with a Peru counterattack in the second half, but did well in the air and handled both center back positions well. He is making a case to become a regular.

Matthias Ginter — 7

Ginter had another strong showing on the right side of defense, and also put a powerful header from a corner on target. Joachim Löw’s positional gamble seems to have paid off.

Toni Kroos — 8

A terrific passing performance from Kroos once again, and the Real Madrid man also won some tackles in critical areas.

Joshua Kimmich — 5

Playing in holding midfielder for the second straight game, Kimmich did well to help spread the ball around the field. But he was poorly positioned on Peru’s counterattacks, the worst instance being on the visitor’s goal.

Ilkay Gündogan — 5

He combined well with Germany’s forwards in the first half, but gave the ball away too cheaply at times. That said, the Manchester City midfielder played his midfield role much better than Leon Goretzka did against France.

Read more: How Germany’s players rated in their draw vs. France

Julian Brandt — 8

He scored a spectacular goal, lifting the ball over Pedro Gallese to quickly erase Peru’s one-goal lead. He was also a strong source of creativity, threading the ball through Peru’s defense on multiple occasions.

Marco Reus —6

The Borussia Dortmund man was much more involved against Peru than he was in the Nations League against France. However, he couldn’t convert either of the golden chances he had in the first half.

Timo Werner — 7

He made some intelligent runs behind Peru’s defense and was very potent on the break, but like Reus, could not convert his chances. He was arguably Germany’s most creative player during these internationals.


Antonio Rüdiger — 4 He used his pace well to prevent some breaks, but turned the ball over too cheaply in Germany’s half.

Julian Draxler — 4 The PSG man was largely invisible in his 45 minutes of work. He may be falling down the pecking order in Germany’s midfield.

Nils Petersen — 5 He had a chance to put Germany ahead after Gallese parried the ball poorly away, but his effort flew over the bar. He was otherwise absent from the game.

Thilo Kehrer — 6 He also made his Germany debut and looked good on the right side of defense. Perhaps Löw may stick with the strategy of deploying a center back on the right flank.

Kai Havertz and Thomas Müller — N/A Both players came on late in the game and did not have time to make an impact.

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Olivier Giroud, Kylian Mbappe lift France to top of Nations League group Sun, 09 Sep 2018 21:36:00 +0000 The post Olivier Giroud, Kylian Mbappe lift France to top of Nations League group appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Olivier Giroud’s first France goal in 10 games sent the world champions top of a Nations League group that also features Germany. Kylian Mbappe had earlier opened the scoring for France, who deserved their 2-1 win.France 2-1 Netherlands
(Mbappe 14′ , Giroud 75′ – Babel 67′)

Giroud’s sweetly-struck volley 15 minutes from time ended his scoring drought and the Netherlands’ hopes of a point in their first Nations League contest.

France, who drew 0-0 with Germany in their opener, were playing at home for the first time since their World Cup win in Russia and the celebrations both before and after the game were long and rousing.

The World Cup trophy was shown off as well, at the stadium where France first won it in 1998.

Mbappe, who enjoyed such a stunning tournament in Russia, opened the scoring early on, but veteran Dutch forward Ryan Babel equalized for the visitors with their only meaningful shot on target.

But Giroud’s moment of magic halted the undeserved comeback, wrapping his left leg around Virgil Van Dijk to score the game winning goal. As a result, France recorded a fifth successive victory over the Dutch.

“The victory was the most important thing, so we can have a great party,” coach Didier Deschamps told television station M6.

“I am really pleased for Olivier. Strikers can have periods like that where they are not as efficient, but he is useful in our build-up play, he scored a lovely goal, and on top of that it gave us the victory.”

The win puts France top of the Group 1 table in League A. They host Germany in Parc de Prince in October.

mp/dv (AFP, Reuters)

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DFB reject suggestion they moved Peru match to avoid potential crowd trouble Sat, 08 Sep 2018 15:32:00 +0000 The post DFB reject suggestion they moved Peru match to avoid potential crowd trouble appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

The German Football Federation (DFB) has dismissed a report saying it moved Sunday’s friendly against Peru from Frankfurt to Sinsheim in order to avoid crowd trouble ahead of the Euro 2024 vote.The denial came after a report in Der Spiegel magazine claimed that a series of internal DFB emails revealed the location of the match was switched in order to maintain a positive image ahead of the Euro 2024 host vote on September 27. Turkey are the other contenders to host the tournament.

The DFB maintain that the match is to be played at Hoffenheim’s stadium because its relatively small size meant a sell out was assured. All 25,494 tickets have been snapped up for the game in the Wirsol Rhein-Neckar-Arena.

Read more: DFB President Grindel admits to Özil errors

German fan groups quit DFB talks, promise further protests

But, according to the news magazine, Grindel feared any televised trouble around the game could harm Germany’s chances at the September 27 vote.

“I think the risk that we experience a disaster in the international match and this has negative effects shortly before the Euros decision is just too high,” Grindel reportedly wrote in an email to his deputy Rainer Koch.

“Because for me, the Frankfurt ultras scene is far too unpredictable,” continued the email, supposedly sent in February.

The last time Germany played in Frankfurt was in 2015, when they beat Poland 3-1 in qualifying for Euro 2016. They have since played 17 home games in 15 different cities, playing twice each in Berlin and Munich.

mp (DPA, SID)

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Mick Schumacher tests DTM Mercedes at Nürburgring Fri, 07 Sep 2018 20:00:00 +0000 The post Mick Schumacher tests DTM Mercedes at Nürburgring appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Michael Schumacher’s son Mick took a time-out from his Formula 3 championship bid on Friday to test a German Touring Car (DTM) Mercedes. The 19-year-old is making steady progress through the junior ranks.Michael Schumacher rose the ranks in Mercedes’ young driver program in the late 1980s and early 90s, also finishing his Formula 1 career with three seasons driving the Silver Arrows in F1.

Now, his son Mick is progressing up the junior series, competing this year for the Formula 3 championship.

Schumacher the younger took time out from his typical F3 duties on Friday, however, to try out the Mercedes DTM (German Touring Car) around the Nürburgring.

“I had a lot of fun. That was a very worthwhile experience,” Schumacher said after the test drive. The original plan was to allow Schumacher to drive demonstration laps in the same DTM Mercedes that Michael Schumacher raced in 1990 and 1991; but the car was ultimately not fit for use on the day.

Read more: Michael Schumacher’s son wins first Formula 4 race

Austrian ex-driver and DTM series executive Gerhard Berger, who raced against Schumacher in F1 in the 1990s, was delighted to see the teenager following in his father and his Uncle Ralf’s footsteps.

“To see the kid, how he’s gradually exhibiting that Schumacher gene and today got to experience our DTM cars, I was watching with real joy,” Berger said after the demonstration. “Michael Schumacher is a legend, he’s the best F1 driver of all time.”

Michael Schumacher is the most successful driver in F1 history, with 91 race wins and seven world championships to his name. He has been absent from public life since sustaining a serious head injury while skiing in December 2013.

Once back in his ordinary cockpit for his day-job, Mick Schmacher just missed out on pole position for the first race of this weekend’s F3 action at the Nürburgring, which will take place on Saturday. He qualified second, just 0.047 seconds slower than his teammate Robert Shwartzman.

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Thomas Müller: ‘Our heart is still beating’ Fri, 07 Sep 2018 09:52:00 +0000 The post Thomas Müller: ‘Our heart is still beating’ appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Germany’s first game since the World Cup debacle was highly anticipated by both team and fans alike. Against the new world champions, Joachim Löw and his players took positives from a cathartic goalless draw.Toni Kroos waved to the remaining fans inside the Allianz Arena with a smile. He looked relieved, as did the rest of his teammates who had already disappeared into the tunnel after their lap of honor. Only Kroos remained to soak up the rest of the atmosphere.

The goalless draw against the newly crowned world champions France seems to have had an effect.

“Today was a good first step,” analyzed Leon Goretzka. “It was about showing people that our heart is still beating,” added Thomas Müller.

Three months after the debacle in Russia, the German national team presented a different face. “That was particularly important for the coach,” explained Goretzka. “We wanted to show more commitment and engagement on the pitch and I think we did that.”

Magical Mbappe, defensive Germans

Time and time again, with high energy levels and great concentration, Germany kept France at bay, aggressively breaking up the world champions’ build-up play. They often succeeded, much to the pleasure of the coach, Joachim Löw, who praised his players for looking to get into tackles and winning them.

Even Kylian Mbappe, who asked the German defense questions with his tricks, flicks and changes of direction, couldn’t land a decisive blow.

“He showed once again that he’s a world-class player – or at least that he’s on that path,” said Goretzka with a grin. “I imagine he was fun to watch from the stands.”

The German supporters certainly had fun as chants of “Deutschland! Deutschland!” echoed around the sold-out arena and every promising move or successful slide tackle was greeted with applause.

“I need to say a positive word about the fans,” Goretzka said. “Right from the very start we had the feeling that we were all in it together and that made it a lot of fun.”

– Read more: How Germany’s players rated in their draw vs. France

Whistles and applause for Ilkay Gündogan

The relationship between team and fans seems to be improving as months of sporting and personal disappointment fade from memory. Ilkay Gündogan, who was mercilessly booed at Germany’s last game on home soil against Saudia Arabia in Leverkusen following his photograph with Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan, was able to do a spot of PR work. A few isolated whistles could still be heard when the 27-year-old came on after an hour, but the majority applauded.

“I’m proud to be part of this team,” said the Manchester City midfielder, who added that he’d held positive talks with Löw. “The boss told me he’s happy that I’m continuing and that I’m still part of the group, which is exactly how I see it too.”

The team appears to have pulled closer together and Löw has clearly found the right words to drag his players out of their post-World Cup slump. The foundation for a rebuild has been laid.

“It’s a process,” said Löw. “It would be naïve to think we could forget the World Cup with just one game though. We can only really rehabilitate ourselves at Euro 2020.”

But first comes the next step: a friendly against Peru in Sinsheim on Sunday.

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Egypt’s first amputee ‘Miracle Team’ targeted by European teams, neglected at home Thu, 06 Sep 2018 13:30:59 +0000 ‘I was born with a physical defect in my right arm, but that did not prevent me from loving football’ says goalkeeper in ‘Miracle Team’

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A photo of a football fan went viral showing him jumping skilfully upside down on his crutches out of sheer happiness after Egypt’s national football team scored a narrow win over Congo last October and qualified for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia following over two decades of absence. This one-legged fan, dubbed ‘the dancing fan,’ is Mahmoud Abdu, 28, the founder and captain of Egypt’s first amputee football team, called the ‘Miracle Team,’ who lost one leg in an accident when he was six. Abdu is still seeking recognition in Egypt, whereas European countries seek to include the ‘Miracle Team’ to their national teams.

Seif Mahmoud, a goalkeeper in the ‘Miracle Team,’ spoke to Daily News Egypt about the unique experience, saying, “our team has about 60 players. No one recognises us. Recently, the Sheikh Zayed Club formed a 15-palyer amputee team composed of us and allowed all the players to train at the club’s playgrounds. However, the Egyptian Football Federation (EFA) refused to recognise us,” elaborating further, “Tharwat Sweilem, the EFA’s executive director, told us that the federation’s regulations do not allow the formation of a national amputee team because football in Egypt is for healthy people!”

“I was born with a physical defect in my right arm, but that did not prevent me from loving football. I undergo physical tests in Tersana SC and El Sekka El Hadid SC. They said I was talented, but I would rather go to clubs specialised for the disabled,” he added.

“We have a great desire to represent Egypt. Several teams, such as Greece and France, tried to give us citizenship, so that we can play for the French national team, but we refused. Many African and Arab countries, like Tanzania, Ghana, and Lebanon, have amputee national teams. We have a dream to play in the 2018 World Cup set up in October, but it seems impossible,” Mahmoud revealed.

He disclosed that the Turkish clubs Bursaspor and Osmanlıspor have made professional bids to buy a number of the Egyptian amputee players, noting that Turkey has the world’s strongest amputee football league, including 16 clubs, and they have scouts everywhere to bring the best players.

The ‘Miracle Team’ still calls on the EFA to establish a special committee for amputee football and start to address the world association to enrol the team as Egypt’s representative in amputee soccer international championships.

An amputee football team consists of seven players, six field players, and one goalkeeper. The field players are one-legged and the goalkeeper is one-armed. None of them are allowed to play with their prosthetics.

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‘I intervened to resolve Salah crisis, coordinated with him to promote Egyptian tourism’: minister of sports Thu, 06 Sep 2018 12:30:32 +0000 Return of spectators to local league matches considered great achievement, Sobhy says

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Egypt’s Minister of Youth and Sports Ashraf Sobhy, said that they are preparing to lease a number of state sports assets in five governorates, as a preliminary step to launch a partnership with the private sector.

Sobhy also spoke about his efforts to solve the conflict between Egyptian football star Mohamed Salah and the Egyptian Football Federation (EFA)

He added that the ministry has started implementing a plan to turn sports facilities into economic entities that will generate profits and contribute to increasing the national income.

Daily News Egypt sat down for an interview with Sobhy, whereby he said that his ministry seeks to activate the role of the private sector in sports as the new Sports Law, which allows clubs and legal persons to establish private companies for sports investment.

Sobhy also spoke about his efforts to solve the conflict between Egyptian football star Mohamed Salah and the Egyptian Football Federation (EFA), and the awaited return of the football fans to attend local games in stadiums, as well as the Zamalek’s conflict with the Egyptian Olympic committee. The transcript for which is below, lightly edited for clarity:

What was your role in solving Mohamed Salah’s crisis with EFA?

I did not speak publicly about this issue, but I used to work as marketing manager at Zamalek, hence I know very well that there are important rules to follow in dealing with a player like Salah. He is not just a football player. He and other Egyptian players playing outside the country make priceless promotion to Egypt. Salah plays in the English Premier League and the UEFA Champions League, that garner a massive viewership in the world, therefore he is a very high value to Egypt and strengthens its position, and the EFA should realise that. If we have paid millions of pounds to the world’s largest promotional agencies, we could not have made such promotional achievement by our players, therefore, I had to intervene. Salah’s agent was complaining about the lack of professionalism in dealing with Salah, though his threats to the EFA were unacceptable. I phoned Salah and he was very responsive to me. I understood what he wants, especially, the sponsorship issue being committed to certain advertising contracts. I also contacted the EFA and agreed with them to implement Salah and other players’ demands. I will coordinate in the coming period with Salah and other Egyptian stars abroad, and the Ministry of Tourism, to put a plan for promoting Egyptian tourism.

Egyptian football fans finally returned to attend matches in stadiums, how was that possible?

Since I assumed my position, I have been working on solving the sports sector problems. The absence of football fans was a real problem and the matches were tasteless. I called for a meeting attended by representatives from the Ministry of Interior, the Military Production Ministry, the armed forces, officials from the EFA, and the presidents of Egyptian football clubs. This meeting was fruitful, and we have agreed on allowing the return of fans to stadiums partially. We decided that the host team will have 3,000 tickets, while the visiting team will have 500 tickets, in addition to 1,500 university students and people with disabilities, while the EFA will be responsible for the fans attendance.
I would like to thank the Ministries of Interior and Military Production, and of course the EFA, which provided all the required measures and solutions. We were keen to test the return of spectators during the Arab Club Championship, and it was a great success.

Initially, it started in the Zamalek and Enppi match held on Saturday. The armed forces will also have 3,000 fans that will be placed in international games. The ministry will also put fans from governorates through the youth and sports committee, which has happened in the UAE Super game—which was praised by all. I received a call from Aswan from someone to attend the game.

Are 5,000 fans enough to attend matches?

It is a start and will increase the number gradually. We will establish an electronic platform to book tickets according to the latest technologies and global expertise and information security standards to attend matches in cooperation with the Ministries of Military Production and the private sector. This will be implemented in the beginning of the next season 2019/2020. Only the games played in stadiums prepared for this system will be attended by fans.

What is your role in conflict between Zamalek’s president and Olympic committee?

The Olympic committee cancelled the general assembly before its conclusion. Everyone was there. As a man of the state, it should have been contained. Sometimes, we have to be mindful to prevent disasters. If we did not cancel the assembly, it could have caused a major disaster. In any case, the Olympic committee is the body that will adopt the general assembly. Being the largest executive body, we work to resolve all crises and bring the views closer. We will announce the details in due course.

What are most prominent projects since you took responsibility?

There are many projects and initiatives. We have conducted elections for the boards of the youth centres and we are turning the youth centres into creative centres that are concerned with the cultural, medical, craft, and handicraft industries besides the sports role they play. We also organise a competition for youth centres through universities. We also participated in the celebration of the selection of Cairo this year as the capital of the Arab youth by organising several events, including two boats carrying 250 young men and women moving through the Nile to be welcomed by each governor and visit the most important places in each of the governorates they pass by. We also hosted a music culture competition and will organise the tournament for youth centres, schools, and universities, in cooperation with the Ministries of Education and Higher Education.

What are the ministry’s current investment plans?

The ministry’s plans include a number of partnership methods, such as granting usufruct or profit sharing rights of a large part of the ministry’s assets.

The partnership plan will also allow more effective investment of the returns on assets management compared to traditional management.

Are there any projects already in place?

The ministry will start applying the new plan in five governorates, mostly in Upper Egypt, which allows the private sector to manage stadiums and swimming pools affiliated to the ministry, which removes the burden of operating expenses from the ministry, preserves the assets, and raise the returns on them.

“The private sector also has a social role through the development of youth centres and sponsoring sports champions, similar to Talaat Moustafa Group that will sponsor 20 players to participate in the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics, as well as developing two youth centres in Sharqia and Assiut,” the minister elaborated.

The new Sports Law came into force a long time ago, though clubs did not implement it as expected, how do you see that?

The clubs and companies operating in the sports sector had a period of two years since the publication of the New Sport Law to obtain licenses for clubs and sports companies in accordance with the Law 71 of 2017.

The large period given to clubs to adjust their conditions for obtaining new licenses led to a low demand for it.

Do not you think that the new law threatens national clubs and opens the door to the clubs affiliated to private companies?

The investment in national clubs depends on the management and the general assembly’s decision, as they are entitled to carry out different investment activities in the aforementioned areas.

In regard with foreign investment in the Egyptian sports sector, namely the purchase of Al-Assiouty Sports Club to be renamed Pyramids FC, I see that the ministry’s dealing with foreign investors comes in accordance with the Egyptian laws, asserting that the ministry encourages investments that aim to develop the sports sector, with no discrimination between investors.

What are the obstacles facing sports investment in Egypt?

The biggest obstacle facing sports investment is the absence of investment and professional thought, whereby the ministry focuses on raising awareness of the great value of professionalism to enable sports to be a source of income, he said.

The ministry will hold meetings with investors to encourage them to enter sports investment, the minister added.

Is the ministry’s budget for sports investment suit the new plans?

There will be a significant increase in the budget of the Investment Directorate in the Ministry of Sports, and we always work on the development of the sector.

I aim to add the investment opportunities in the sports sector within the state investment plan, especially, that sports must become a source of income.

What are the most important projects targeted by the ministry in the coming period?

The ministry currently studies its assets to start developing them, including stadiums, playgrounds or swimming pools. In parallel ministry’s investment plan includes the development of the Cairo International Stadium and evaluation of the current management and returns in preparation to launch a large investment project, in cooperation with the private sector companies.

Are there any amendments to the new Sports Law?

The ministry is currently consulting with the Egyptian Olympic committee on the amendment of the Sport Law to suit the new investment plans.

What is the impact of the economic reform programme on the sports sector?

The country’s economic reform programme has a positive impact on the sports sector, because all the newly established projects have sports facilities, which increase the need for the private sector to manage and develop them.

You promised previously that Egypt aims to host the 2030 World Cup, are we ready for that?

The ministry will need to establish new six-eight world-class stadiums, as means for Egypt to host the prestigious event.

“We have a large transport network and quality residences, but we still lack world-class stadiums, therefore we have a plan for this goal,” he said. 

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‘The same values, the same ambition’: France keen to build on World Cup success Thu, 06 Sep 2018 11:05:00 +0000 The post ‘The same values, the same ambition’: France keen to build on World Cup success appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Fifty-three days on from their triumph in the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, newly-crowned world champions France return to action against neighbors Germany, the team whose title they took, in the UEFA Nations League.After Die Mannschaft’s spectacular failure to defend their crown in Russia, Les Bleus are determined not to make the same mistake, with central defender Raphael Varane insisting the newly-crowned world champions will retain “the same values and the same ambition” going forward, starting on Thursday night in Munich.

“Winning the World Cup does give us a particular status but I don’t think that second star on the kit will weigh too heavily on us,” said the Real Madrid player, who will wear the captain’s armband to mark his 50th international appearance. “We’re conscious that we’re facing a formidable opponent, but it’s the perfect way to get back into our stride.”

German coach Joachim Löw took time out from his post-World Cup analysis to praise his French counterpart Didier Deschamps, saying the 49-year-old has given the French team “a good balance between a strong defense and a potent attack” – attributes he would like to see his own team master as well.

– Read the German perspective: Joachim Löw’s Germany seek fresh start ahead of France test

German ‘core is still there’

“The quality of this German team is still there,” responded Deschamps. “They’ve not gone from one of the favorites for the World Cup to an average team overnight. The core is still there and they remain a team of the highest quality.”

Despite only having had two days to prepare with his players at the French camp at Clairefontaine, south-west of Paris, Deschamps spoke of a “cheerful” but “intense” atmosphere with the squad.

“I’ve not felt any sense of relaxation,” he said. “On the contrary; the lads are all happy to be together, to be competing with each other and preparing to face a tough adversary.”

Deschamps is expected to name a full-strength team in the Allianz Arena including Paul Pogba, N’Golo Kanté, Blaise Matuidi and Kylian Mbpappé. Stuttgart defender Benjamin Pavard is set to start at right-back and Deschamps was full of praise for the 22-year-old.

“I watched him all last season at Stuttgart and he was fantastic, even if I use him in a slightly different role,” he said of Pavard’s more central role with the Swabians. “He’s a defender with great positioning. Perhaps he was a bit of an unknown quantity due to his inexperience but, the way I know him and his character, I know that he doesn’t doubt himself.”

– Opinion: France’s World Cup victory is a victory for modern France

Deschamps ‘disappointed’ for Griezmann

With the physical presence of Olivier Giroud and the creativity of Antoine Griezmann, France pose two very different but simultaneous threats up front. And such has been Griezmann’s form, Deschamps admitted he was “disappointed” that the Atletico Madrid striker wasn’t nominated for FIFA player of the year award.

“I wouldn’t say it was unfair because the three players who were nominated also deserve it,” he said of Cristiano Ronaldo, Mohammed Salah and Luka Modric. “But I think there were some French players who deserved to be included too, and not just for what they achieved at the World Cup. I was particularly disappointed for Antoine who was also decisive in the Europa League final.”

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Military Production, Sports Ministries agree on establishing e-ticket system Wed, 05 Sep 2018 21:59:28 +0000 System will issue e-tickets, prepare analytical reports, security information statics

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Egypt’s Minister of Military Production Mohamed El-Assar said that the ministry with the participation of the Youth and Sports Ministry is considering establishing an updatable digital database of electronic tickets for football fans in the Youth and Sports Ministry headquarters.

El-Assar said that the ministry will update a safe information base in accordance with the latest global standards of information security. The Ministries of Interior and Youth and Sport will participate in implementing the new system. 

Furthermore, Falcon Group International and Dominick Company will take part in the process.

On Tuesday, El-Assar addressed the new project with Ashraf Sobhu, the minister of youth and sport and top representatives from the Interior Ministry, as well as officials from Falcon and Dominick.

They concluded to take further measures to ease the returning of football fans to stadiums based on a compulsive electronic system, reaffirming that “the state supports the return of fans.”

The new electronic system will be responsible for issuing electronic tickets and preparing analytical reports and security information statics to the concerned bodies.

Last month, the Youth and Sports Ministry decreed to gradually reallow fans to return to Egypt’s stadiums, starting from September following years of a ban.

Football fans were banned from attending local matches in 2012 after 72 supporters died in clashes in a February stadium riot at a game in Port Said between local club Al-Masry and Al Ahly.

In May 2015, an Egyptian court banned all hardcore football fan groups known as Ultras over terrorism accusations, considering all their activities illegal.

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Opinion: The silence is deafening Wed, 05 Sep 2018 19:40:00 +0000 The post Opinion: The silence is deafening appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

While other prominent figures have spoken out on issues such as discrimination and right-wing extremism in Germany, the country’s number one sport has been conspicuous by its absence, says DW’s Matt Ford.This week in Munich, German national team coach Joachim Löw plus several high-profile players were given the chance to comment on the subject of racism and discrimination in Germany in the wake of the Mesut Özil affair and events in Chemnitz which have dominated the news for over a week.

On Monday, several top German bands and musicians performed at a free, open-air concert organized against the far-right, attended by over 65,000 people under the motto: #WirSindMehr – there are more of us.

“This has nothing to do with left against right, but rather that anyone with normal decency, whatever their politics, stands up to an extreme-right mob,” said Andreas Frege, known as Campino, the lead singer of Düsseldorf band Die Toten Hosen. “We have to stop this behavior before the snowball becomes an avalanche.”

On Facebook, German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier addressed over 107,000 followers, stating: “Let us not be cowed by rioting, violent hooligans. Let us not allow our cities to become stages for agitation. Hate must not be given free reign in our country.”

And in Berlin, pop star Helene Fischer introduced her hit “Wir brechen das Schweigen” (We are breaking the silence) with a reference to Chemnitz, saying: “Raise your voice together with me, against violence, against xenophobia.” She also shared the hashtag #WirSindMehr with her 500,000 Instagram followers.

Football remains silent

The message has come from all corners of society – with one glaring exception: the country’s number one sport and its primary representatives, the German Football Association (DFB) and the national team.

And yet, prior to Chemnitz, the biggest debate surrounding discrimination and racism in Germany concerned that very organization after Mesut Özil withdrew from the national team citing “a feeling of racism and lack of respect” in the wake of his ill-advised photoshoot with Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

It took three foreign journalists to broach the subject of Özil, racism and discrimination in German football – a subject which Löw once again insisted was finished.

“In all my years in charge, there has never been racism of any form in our team,” he said. “Our players have always been extremely well-integrated.”

“Over the years, we’ve proven that players of all cultures are welcome,” added Toni Kroos, who had previously expressed the belief that “the issues that were quite rightly addressed in [Özil’s] statement were overshadowed by a significantly higher degree of nonsense.”

A day earlier, when asked about the team’s position on events in Chemnitz captain Manuel Neuer uttered barely more than 100 robotic words, including, “I thought the concert in Chemnitz was good” and “I thought it was good that many musicians and artists took part.”

Next to him, Thomas Müller and Julian Brandt remained silent until, 53 seconds later, another journalist moved the subject on to how Germany plan to compensate for the loss of Özil in midfield.

Marketing over conviction

Three golden opportunities for five of Germany’s highest-profile sports personalities, including the national team captain and coach, to address an issue of immense national importance, and that was it?

Toni Kroos is right: the German national team has been a beacon for successful integration over the last decade – according to its official marketing campaigns, at least.

Unfortunately, Germany is also a country where, in recent months, a national team player has resigned citing racism within the DFB and where right-wing extremists have marched through the streets of a city giving Nazi salutes and attacking people of migrant appearance.

Are Germany’s professional footballers aware of the magnitude of those issues? Are they aware of the influence they could have on millions of people by speaking out? Or are they really so deeply entrenched in their bubble?

And are they remaining silent out of their own conviction or because they have been told to do so by a football association more interested in presenting a positive, shiny image ahead of the awarding of the 2024 European Championships in three weeks’ time?

It’s time for the German national team and the DFB to translate cheap slogans and mottos into actions. Because the problems are there, they are real, and, just like the atmosphere at Germany’s home games, the silence is deafening.

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Ryder Cup: Sergio Garcia and Tiger Woods among wildcard picks Wed, 05 Sep 2018 18:21:00 +0000 The post Ryder Cup: Sergio Garcia and Tiger Woods among wildcard picks appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

European captain Thomas Bjorn has opted for experience by selecting four previous winners, including Sergio Garcia, as his wildcard picks. Bjorn follows the lead of US captain Jim Furyk, who called on Tiger Woods.Garcia is joined by Ian Poulter, Paul Casey and Henrik Stenson, who have all been involved in multiple winning teams, as the captain's wildcard picks.

While Poulter has found form after missing the 2016 defeat by the United States at Hazeltine, Garcia has struggled in 2018, missing the cut at each of the last five majors.

"All four bring loads of experience, points and know how to win and lose and they will bring plenty of heart," said Bjorn.

British Open champion Francesco Molinari, four-time major winner Rory McIlroy, English trio Justin Rose, Tommy Fleetwood and Tyrrell Hatton, Jon Rahm, Alex Noren and Thorbjorn Olesen had already qualified automatically for the event to be held just outside Paris from September 28-30.

Garcia is Europe's 'heartbeat'

The selection of the four veterans as wildcard picks means Belgian Thomas Pieters, who won four points two years ago as a rookie, Rafa Cabrera Bello and the in-form Matt Wallace miss out.

"The one thing about Sergio is that he's the heartbeat of the team. It's like a football team going without their captain, that's what it's like for us," said Bjorn, when explaining his decision to opt for the Spaniard.

It will be the 38-year-old Garcia's ninth Ryder Cup appearance, having been the youngest man to play in the event's history as a 19-year-old in 1999.

"It probably wasn't an easy decision for Thomas Bjorn," admitted Garcia. "He knows what I bring to the team, game-wise and in the team room. It's been a tough year, but I've been working hard and I feel like my game is coming along. I'm now ready to try and help the team win the Ryder Cup back."

Furyk opts for the big two

Wednesday's announcement of the European team comes less than 24 hours after Bjorn's opposite number Jim Furyk named his two highest profile players – Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson – among his captain's picks. Bryson DeChambeau was the other man to receive a wildcard for the US.

Former world number one Woods had already been assured of a Ryder Cup presence after being named as one of Furyk's non-playing vice-captains.

However Woods' form since his return to golf this year has forced a change of plan from Furyk, as his side attempt to retain the trophy for the first time since 1993.

mp/ (DPA, Reuters)

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Five improvements Germany must make Wed, 05 Sep 2018 13:18:00 +0000 The post Five improvements Germany must make appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Much of the fallout from Germany’s early World Cup exit has centered around off-pitch woes. But their shambolic on-pitch displays are not forgotten. Here’s where they must improve, starting on Thursday night.The time for talking is nearly over, something that’s probably of great relief to Joachim Löw and his players. Germany start their post-World Cup rebuild with a UEFA Nations League opener against France, the team that replaced them as world champions, on Thursday. And there are some major issues to resolve.

Replacing old with new

Along with the stench of complacency, the relatively advanced age of many of Germany’s key men was exposed in Russia, most notably by Mexico in their first match. The retirements of Mesut Özil and Mario Gomez and the omission of Sami Khedira from the latest squad has removed almost 250 caps-worth of experience from the national team set up and is likely to open up two places in the starting eleven.

Nevertheless, Löw’s squad for the UEFA Nations League opener was relatively conservative, with Khedira the only big name dropped. Özil’s exit may mean a more central role for Marco Reus or Julian Draxler while Julian Brandt and Leroy Sane (both 22) may also benefit.

But Khedira’s replacement, both in the short and the long-term, is less clear. His central partnership with Toni Kroos (top) was critical to Germany’s style for so long, but the pair – particularly Khedira – couldn’t cope during the World Cup. New Bayern Munich man Leon Goretzka looks the closest to a natural replacement available, while the selection of Bayer Leverkusen’s 19-year-old prodigy Kai Havertz, as a replacement for either Khedira or Özil, would represent an overdue investment in the future.

Injecting some pace

It feels like a lifetime ago now, but Löw’s decision to leave Leroy Sane at home was regarded as both a shock and a demonstration of Germany’s strength in depth. The man picked over him, Julian Brandt, impressed in his World Cup cameos and was one of few Germans to emerge from Russia in credit.

But both players have started the new campagn poorly. Brandt has been peripheral as Bayern Leverkusen have fallen to successive defeats while Sane was dropped from Manchester City’s squad for their last match after some shoddy displays and a reported lack of professionalism in training – an issue also thought to be at play in Löw’s decision. But the wide men both have a quality becoming ever more critical in the modern game; pace. Speed on the wings would add another dimension to the 2014 World Cup winners. But is Löw prepared to sacrifice consistency for a little more speed?

Getting Timo Werner firing again

One area of the pitch where Die Mannschaft have a regular flyer is up front. RB Leipzig spearhead Timo Werner looked, for a long time, like the answer to Germany’s search for a prolific natural front man – one that’s gone on since the retirement of Miroslav Klose in 2014.

After opening his account in the Confederations Cup, Werner bagged eight in his next twelve Germany games. But his touch in front of goal deserted him in Russia and he’s failed to score in any of his four club appearances since. While he hasn’t missed a glut of chances, Werner looks low on confidence and appears much more suited to a counter-attacking style than the possession game Löw has long favored. The Germany coach has said that relying on that style was one of his biggest errors and a change of tactics, as well as a shot of confidence, may be required to get the most out of a player who still looks like Germany’s only genuine long-term option up top.

Finding an alternative at left back

While there’s no suggestion he’s out of Löw’s plans, Jonas Hector will play no part in the France match or the friendly against Peru on Sunday, with the left back needing a break after starting the 2. Bundesliga season early with Cologne. Despite being the back up at the World Cup, there’s no sign of Marvin Plattenhardt in the latest squad, with Nico Schulz the only left back in the squad.

The Hoffenheim man has been a fine Bundesliga player for some time but the fact that he and Plattenhardt both reached 25 before winning a cap tells its own story. With Hector spending at least this season playing at the lower level, Löw needs to sort out the issue at left back.

Working out what to do with Müller

He’s played 94 times for Germany, racked up nearly 300 league games for Bayern Munich and won a World Cup golden boot, but still it’s difficult to say exactly where Thomas Müller fits for this iteration of the German team. He was ineffectual on the right wing in the World Cup and has also played upfront and just behind the striker in recent times.

While he’s impressed in the latter role for Bayern this term, some – including his former club boss Pep Guardiola – have expressed doubts over whether he has the technical ability to suceed in that role against the best teams. Whether Löw has those same doubts is unclear, but finding a way to make Müller tick looks critical to making Germany a force again.

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Rafael Nadal survives US Open epic Wed, 05 Sep 2018 08:32:00 +0000 The post Rafael Nadal survives US Open epic appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Rafael Nadal overcame Dominic Thiem to reach the semifinal of the US Open in one of the most dramatic battles in the tournament’s history. He will now face Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina for a place in the final.Finally, at three minutes past two on Wednesday morning, it was over.

After four hours and 48 grueling minutes in the humid heat of the New York night, defending champion Rafael Nadal was through to the semifinal of the US Open.

Four hours and 24 minutes earlier on Arthur Ashe court, the Spaniard had lost the opening set 0-6 to Austrian ninth seed Dominic Thiem – only the third time in Nadal’s Grand Slam career that he had lost a set to love.

On those occasions, in the second round of the US Open in 2004 against Andy Roddick and in the 2006 Wimbledon final against Roger Federer, he went on to lose. This time, he triumphed 0-6, 6-4, 7-5, 6-7 (4-7), 7-6 (7-5) in the longest match of this year’s tournament.

“It was an incredible battle in such tough conditions,” said Nadal, 32, who admitted he had suffered. “I had a really bad start and I had to tell myself: ‘Wake up!’ I just had to try and stay in the match.”

– Read more: Defending champion Sloane Stephens slumps to straight sets defeat

The fightback

And although it took him over half an hour to win his first game, Nadal did fight back to take the second set 6-4. “When these things happen, I am not the guy that looks at his strings or looks at his box or blames the racquet,” he said. “I am the guy who looks at himself.

“I needed to move forward, to change that dynamic, and I did. The first step is not to look for excuses or put the blame on something that is not the truth. The only truth is that you have to do things better. You have to fight for the points and fight for the match.”

An inspiring attitude which was put to the test again. Thiem regained the lead, winning the third-set 7-5 before going 4-2 up in the fourth set – just two games from victory. But again, Nadal refused to lie down, breaking back before taking the set 7-4 in the tiebreak and forcing a deciding set which also went the distance.

“When you get to a fifth set tiebreaker, it’s 50/50,” analyzed Thiem. “And that’s where he made one more point than me.

“Tennis is cruel sometimes because this match didn’t really deserve a loser. But there has to be one,” the Austrian continued. “It’s going to be stuck in my mind forever. I’m going to remember this match, for sure.”

“I’m really sorry for Domi because he’s a close friend of mine on the tour and a great warrior,” said Nadal, adding that this victory could signal a chance of dynamic. “In the final three sets, the level of my game gradually increased,” he said. “In terms of the dynamics of the tournament, it’s a big step forward for me.”

For the second year in a row, Nadal will now face 2009 champion and third seed Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina for a place in the final.

mf/mp (dpa/SID/AFP)

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Women’s World Cup qualifying: Germany secure place at France 2019 with huge win Tue, 04 Sep 2018 18:12:00 +0000 The post Women’s World Cup qualifying: Germany secure place at France 2019 with huge win appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Germany’s women continued their record of having qualified for all eight World Cups, topping Group 5 ahead of Iceland. They confirmed their place at France 2019 with a resounding 8-0 win in the Faroe Islands.Germany’s women have booked their place at next year’s World Cup with a resounding 8-0 win in the Faroe Islands.

The Germans had all but confirmed their place at France 2019, sitting clear of Iceland at the top of Group 5. But the two-time world champions ensured there were no complications, rounding off their qualifying campaign on a high in front of departing interim coach Horst Hrubesch.

Read more: Germany beat Iceland to take top spot

Lea Schüller put Germany into a third minute lead to become the leading scorer in Group 5 with five goals. The Faroe Islands managed to keep Germany at bay for a while, but a quick-fire double from Lina Magull and Leonie Maier put Germany in complete control at the break.

Germany stepped things up a gear after the break, with Magull adding to her tally and both Carolin Simon and Alexandra Popp getting braces to complete a miserable 90 minutes for the hosts, and an aggregate score of 19-0 over their two meetings in in this campaign.

Germany end qualifying with seven wins from eight games, and a goal difference of +35.

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Bundesliga rules out playing game abroad Tue, 04 Sep 2018 16:51:00 +0000 The post Bundesliga rules out playing game abroad appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

After Spain’s La Liga announced its intention to play one league game per year in the United States, Germany’s Bundesliga has ruled out following suit. DFL chief Christian Seifert said he “thinks nothing of the idea.”Bayern Munich vs. Borussia Dortmund in Shanghai? Schalke vs. Bayer Leverkusen in New York? Not any time soon, according to the German Football League (DFL), which operates the Bundesliga.

“We will never play a competitive game outside Germany,” said DFL chief executive Christian Seifert on Tuesday at the Football Summit in Frankfurt, an annual conference organized by broadsheet Zeit.

Spain’s La Liga announced in August that one match per year from the country’s top flight will be played in the United States as part of a 15-year joint venture with global sports marketing company Relevent, the organizers of the International Champions Cup. But Germany will seemingly not be following suit.

“Playing an official, competitive match abroad, where points are at stake and where participation in international competition or relegation or promotion could be decided, would be a huge show of disrespect towards fans and players,” said Seifert. “I don’t think anything of the idea.”

Barcelona in Miami

La Liga’s decision to play one game in the USA is part of Spanish football’s attempts to keep up with the financial and marketing power of the English Premier League, whereas organizer Relevent sees the games as a step to boost the popularity of football in North America ahead of the 2026 World Cup, which will be hosted by the USA, Mexico and Canada.

According to Spanish publication Sport, the January 27 fixture between champions Barcelona and Catalan rivals Girona has been selected to be the first La Liga game to take place abroad, news which was confirmed by Girona sports daily L’Esportiu who ran with the headline: “All off to Miami!”

Yet while the DFL are just as keen to market the Bundesliga abroad, Seifert said he doesn’t believe that America “needs need European help to promote the game.”

With La Liga games habitually kicking off at eleven different times each weekend, Spanish fans are used to watching their teams at almost any time of day – a development which Seifert also ruled out in the Bundesliga, where averages attendances and away followings are considerably higher.

– Read more: ‘Football needs to decide what its fans are worth’

Finding a balance in Germany

Last season saw large-scale protests against the introduction of Monday-night games in the Bundesliga as match-going supporters voiced their concerns that the league is already taking national and international television audiences more seriously than them.

Finding a balance between new commercial opportunities and German football’s fan culture is therefore more difficult and Seifert believes “that is the challenge which we need to keep dealing with.”

While ruling out playing actual matches abroad, Seifert nevertheless insisted that the DFL continue to “embrace digitalization.”

“It would be naïve to think that ten-year-old boys and girls will still be sat in front of their screens in fifteen years’ time watching a nerve-racking 0-0 draw. That won’t be the case and we have to deal with that.”

mf/mds (SID/dpa)

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Thomas Müller hopes Germany can return to ‘power football’ after World Cup debacle Tue, 04 Sep 2018 13:05:00 +0000 The post Thomas Müller hopes Germany can return to ‘power football’ after World Cup debacle appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Germany return to action following their World Cup humiliation with their Nations League debut against world champions France. They’ll be out to show that sticking with coach Joachim Löw was the right decision.After coach Joachim Löw’s admission that Germany’s focus on possession football cost them in Russia, Thomas Müller hopes that the team can offer fans the “power football” that they want to see, especially against the French.

“When it doesn’t lead to goals, possession football can look laborious and slow,” admitted the Bayern Munich forward in a press conference in Munich on Tuesday. “So the game against France is a big chance to give the spectators the power football they want to see, because there will be moments where we can transition quickly.”

In a lengthy press conference last Wednesday, Löw and national team manager Oliver Bierhoff presented a detailed analysis of what went wrong in Russia. Not everyone was convinced, but Müller at least appears satisfied.

“I think the detail in his explanation was pretty unique and actually quite sensational,” he said. “The coach has raised key points which we have all discussed and we’re happy to follow him.”

Captain Manuel Neuer is also convinced that the decision to persevere with Löw as coach is the right one.

“Of course he was down after the World Cup, as we all were,” said the Bayern Munich goalkeeper. “But he’s also ambitious and he has a plan. From the very first discussions, it was clear that he is just as hungry as the players.”

‘The national team stands for integration’

When asked about the issues which have accompanied Germany off the pitch since the World Cup, the players were less forthcoming.

“This isn’t about specific names which may have been mentioned in the past,” said Neuer, a barely-concealed reference to Mesut Özil’s withdrawal from the team. “Fundamentally, we stand by every member of our team. No-one has a special status and each of us is equally responsible for what happens on the pitch.”

The players were also asked about the right-wing demonstrations in Chemnitz over the past week in which football hooligans from the region, including some claiming allegiance to local side Chemnitzer FC, have played a leading role. On Monday night, several high-profile German bands and musicians performed at a free concert against right-wing extremism.

“I think the concert in Chemnitz was a good thing. It’s good that so many artists and also Chemnitzer FC got involved,” Neuer said, referring to the fact that the fourth-tier club has distanced itself from the right-wing protests.

“The national team stands for integration,” he continued. “We rely heavily on players from migrant backgrounds who have come to Germany or grown up here, and we’re grateful that we’ve experienced a healthy integration.”

Sat between two of the squad’s elder statesmen, 22-year-old Julian Brandt gave his opinion on the battle for places in the squad as Germany look to move on from a disappointing summer.

“We have a lot of players who can play in several different positions, including Thomas and myself,” said the Bayer Leverkusen forward. “We can both play in the No. 10 role, for instance, or from the wings. We’re flexible and that’s what characterizes us as a team.”

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