Category Archives: Sports News

“The fight is off!”: Amir Khan reveals the Lamont Peterson Lamont Peterson will NOT go ahead

Khan took to Twitter to announce the bout would not go ahead – and laid the blame solely at Peterson’s door

 Rematch off: Lamont and Khan were due to fight on May 19

Rematch off: Lamont and Khan were due to fight on May 19

Amir Khan’s world light-welterweight title fight against Lamont Peterson – scheduled for May 19 – has been called off following the American’s failed drug test.

The British boxer’s US promoter Richard Schaefer revealed earlier this week that Peterson tested positive for a banned steroid.

It cast doubt on whether the Las Vegas showdown would go ahead as the Nevada State Athletic Commission considered whether to grant him a licence.

Khan took to Twitter just before midnight tonight to announce the bout would not go ahead – and laid the blame solely at Peterson’s door.

He posted: “The fight is off! sorry everyone the only person to blame is @kingpete26 I’ll be looking for a opponent to fight June 30th.”

Khan complained to the WBA, IBF and Washington DC commission after losing his light-welterweight titles to Peterson in the American’s hometown, Washington, last year.

He highlighted several grievances, chiefly referee Joseph Cooper’s deduction of two points, the judges’ scoring of the bout and the unexplained presence of ‘mystery man’ Mustafa Ameen at ringside.



It’s Roy: FA to name Hodgson as England boss in amazing snub to fans’ favourite Redknapp

West Brom have given permission for the the FA to speak to Roy Hodgson about the vacant manager’s position

Top job: Roy Hodgson was considered second favourite behind Harry Redknapp to become next England manager

Top job: Roy Hodgson was considered second favourite behind Harry Redknapp to become next England manager

Roy Hodgson is set to become the new England manager.

Football Association chiefs were tonight granted permission by West Brom to speak to Hodgson, they have already held talks and they hope to have a deal wrapped up within 72 hours.

It will come as an amazing snub to Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp who is the people’s choice for the job and has always been the bookies’ odds-on favourite.

Spurs are also understood to be furious that the FA have dragged out the process while their results have gone through the floor and the uncertainty surrounding Redknapp has jeopardised their whole season.

But Mirror Sport understands that the FA do not intend to even speak to Redknapp as they see Hodgson as a “better fit” for the job, especially as they believe he will embrace the development side of the role at their St George’s Park HQ in Burton.

Former Switzerland boss Hodgson also boasts international experience on his CV and that is believed to be another key reason as to why the FA went for him ahead of Redknapp.

West Brom’s technical director Dan Ashworth is also a leading candidate to be appointed as the FA’s new technical director and move across with Hodgson.

Redknapp has also confided in friends that he has been left feeling shattered, in need of a break and had reservations about the Burton set-up.

No contact: Spurs' Harry Redknapp hasn't been approached

No contact: Spurs' Harry Redknapp hasn't been approached

But the FA will now have to brace themselves for a backlash for not going for the popular choice of Redknapp.

The speculation over Redknapp has also coincided with Tottenham’s season falling apart and they are now battling for fourth place having been title contenders before the clamour for him to succeed Fabio Capello who quit in February.

Hodgson has already admitted publicly he wants the England job and it seems certain that he will be appointed in time for the Euros and to pick the squad for the tournament.

Hodgson will also be cheaper than Redknapp as his contract expires at the end of June and has yet to agree a new deal with West Brom.

FA chairman Bernstein said: “Roy is the only manager we have approached and we remain on course to make an appointment within the timescale we set out.

“Further conversations will now take place with Roy.”

West Brom chairman Jeremy Peace said: “Roy has done a fantastic job over the past 15 months and the fact the FA wants to discuss the England role with him is testament to that.

“Roy is a proud Englishman and we can understand why he wants to speak to the FA about this highly prestigious managerial position.

“However, we have emphasised to Roy how much we would like him to remain as our head coach and continue his major contribution to our project at the Hawthorns as we look to establish ourselves as a Premier League club.

“Everyone here has an excellent working relationship with him and he is immensely popular with our supporters.”

Who would be your choice for England manager?

Swede dreams: Liverpool enter chase for goal scoring AZ midfielder

Rasmus Elm has scored 12 league goals in the Dutch league to attract attention from a host of Premier League, Italian and Spanish clubs

Stevie plan B? Rasmus Elm has been compared to Liverpool captain Gerrard

Stevie plan B? Rasmus Elm has been compared to Liverpool captain Gerrard

Rasmus Elm is the man Liverpool believe can deliver the goal power to boost their title chances next season.

The 24-year-old AZ Alkmaar midfielder, who will represent Sweden at Euro 2012, is in the form of his life. He has scored 12 league goals this season and been watched by all the top Premier League, Italian and Spanish clubs.

Before being ditched as Liverpool’s director of football a fortnight ago, Damien Commoli had compiled an extensive dossier on Elm.

Kenny Dalglish is well aware of Elm’s ­power-packed ability and will finalise his summer recruitment drive with his club’s owners, the Fenway Group, at the end of the season.

Clearly, Liverpool have been stung by ­criticism that they paid over the odds last ­summer to sign three Englishmen in Andy ­Carroll, ­Jordan Henderson and Stewart Downing for a combined fee of around £75million.

The good news about Elm, who resembles Anfield skipper Steven ­Gerrard with his ­shooting power at set-pieces, is that, with only one year to go on his current contract, he can be lured away for around £8m.


Last chance: Mancini warns Balotelli to shape up or ship out

City manager is under pressure from senior players and the club’s Abu Dhabi owners over the friction caused by the controversial Italian striker

Player power: Senior City stars have tired of Mario Balotelli's antics this season

Player power: Senior City stars have tired of Mario Balotelli's antics this season

Player power has prompted Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini to warn Mario Balotelli that he must mend his ways or face being booted out of the Etihad.

Balotelli is once again available for selection for tomorrow night’s make-or-break Manchester derby with United after serving a ­three-match ban for his red card in the defeat at Arsenal.

And Sunday Mirror Sport understands that Balotelli has been left in no doubt by both his teammates and his manager that this is his last chance to save his City career.

Several senior City players have told Mancini that the Italian’s ­behaviour is causing friction in the dressing room. They feel that the Blues’ boss has indulged ­Balotelli to the point where it is damaging both the player and the team.

Mancini is also coming under pressure from City’s Abu Dhabi owners to get the 21-year-old to clean up his act.

He has now given Balotelli an ultimatum – and so far it seems to be working. Mancini said: “Maybe I am the only man in football who trusts Mario. But in this game I think, yes, you can trust him.

“Mario as usual is training well.

“In one game he can score two or three goals – this is the manager’s problem. Mario has apologised to me for the red card at Arsenal, yes. He has been training well.”

Mancini’s belief that the young Italian has learned some vital ­lessons is confirmed by another City insider who said: “There has been a noticeable change in ­Balotelli since his sending off at Arsenal.

“He has settled right down and seems to be focused on his job, which hasn’t always been the case since he came to the club.

“A number of players have made their feelings clear to both Balotelli and Roberto Mancini that they felt one player was being given too much freedom.

“It was beginning to cause ­problems in the dressing room and was also damaging Mancini ­because to some extent he has staked his reputation on Balotelli.” The striker began his penance by issuing an apology for his second red card of the season.

During his ban, he has watched Carlos Tevez strike up a devastating partnership with Sergio Aguero.

Balotelli has scored 17 goals this season, but some team-mates felt he wasn’t doing enough on the pitch to justify the special treatment being ­lavished on him.

The insider added: “All top players are given some ­concessions. That doesn’t cause any problems as long as they are delivering on the pitch. The feeling was that Balotelli was not doing enough to be considered a special case.”

Controversy has followed the former Inter Milan forward throughout his career. But the negative headlines have gone into overdrive since ­Mancini persuaded City to pay £24million 18 months ago for a player described as ­‘unmanageable’ by Jose Mourinho.

That has not gone down well in image-conscious Abu Dhabi. And some of City’s fans are beginning to give up on a maverick who is something of a cult hero because of his ability to go from the sublime to the ridiculous on and off the pitch.

Mancini will once again trust in the Tevez-Aguero axis for tomorrow night’s crunch derby. But Balotelli terrorised United in City’s 6-1 win at Old Trafford in October, scoring twice and will be ready to emerge from the substitutes’ bench if he is needed to make an impact.


Squeaky bum time: Lose to City and blow the title, warns Fergie

United boss admits arch-rivals will probably go on to win the Premier League title if they beat his side at the Etihad Stadium on Monday

Red faced: Manchester United let a two goal lead against Everton slip to allow City back in the title race

Red faced: Manchester United let a two goal lead against Everton slip to allow City back in the title race

Sir Alex Ferguson has warned his players: “Lose to City and you have blown the title.”

The Manchester United boss has left his men in no doubt about the dire ­consequences that defeat in tomorrow night’s epic derby at the Etihad Stadium.

United lead City by three points, but Roberto Mancini’s men will go back to the summit courtesy of their superior goal difference if they win the 163rd meeting of the teams.

City have a tough run-in – with a trip to Champions League-chasing Newcastle followed by the visit of relegation-threatened QPR – while United entertain Swansea before finishing the campaign at Sunderland.

But Ferguson warned: “If City win they would probably go on to win it from there.

“Even though they’ve got to go to Newcastle I think they would have a great chance.

“If we won we’d be strong favourites. Even with a draw we’d be favourites. No doubt about that.

“Two games to go, one at home and one away, we’d have to be happy with that.

“One thing, though, we won’t be going to City just looking to make sure we don’t lose.”

United squandered the chance to maintain their five-point lead at the top last week when Everton fought back from 4-2 down to force a draw with two goals in the closing minutes.

Ferguson has shouldered his share of the blame in allowing City to blow the title race wide open by winning at Wolves.

UEFA president Michel Platini is planning to jet into Manchester to watch a game that has captured the imagination of the world.

Ferguson said: “Given the chances we created against Everton and the quality of our performance, we should have won comfortably.

“Maybe I should have brought on a couple of defenders just to see it off.

“I mean, there was only seven minutes to go and we were winning 4-2. Bloody hell, there you go.”

He added: “I always thought City would be our big challengers this year, particularly after the early-season programme they had.

“I mean, they didn’t really play anyone at the start of the season, and they got off to a flyer because of it.

“We had Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham in the first four or five games. We had a really tough start and because City had some good results that projected them forward.

“I always expected them to be there at the end after that.”

United came from 2-0 down to beat City in the Community Shield.

But the champions were humbled 6-1 at Old Trafford in October – equalling the biggest-ever scoreline in a Manchester derby.

Ferguson exacted some revenge by knocking the Blues out of the FA Cup, winning 3-2 at the Etihad in January, but only after the home side had come back from three goals down after having skipper Vincent Kompany sent off.

Ferguson said: “It doesn’t matter what has happened for the rest of the season.

“They’re undefeated at home and we have the best away record. It doesn’t matter. This is a one-off fame.

“The City crowd will be up for it. We expect them to be. But that’s not unusual for us.

“We’ve been to Anfield, the Emirates, places like that. The atmosphere will be just the same.

“I have to trust my players. We have enough experience, enough pace and enough good footballers with determination.

“We’ll be all right in that respect. A game of this nature can be decided by anything – and you only hope it isn’t decided by a bad decision.”

He added: “There is a focus on this game so it’s important that it is good. We’re representing the city all over the world.

“There’s 203 countries going to watch it. Even Michel Platini is coming to watch.

“That creates a certain occasion and we want to represent ourselves in the right way.

“It’s difficult to know how City will approach it.

“My feeling is that he will be cautious. It doesn’t matter, all I know is that we want to do well.”


Interview: adidas Designer Robbie Fuller Breaks Down the adiZero Crazy Light 2

Yesterday in Los Angeles, adidas Basketball introduced the adiZero Crazy Light 2. Set to hit stores on May 24th, the $140 9.5 ounce shoe will be the lightest basketball shoe in the world — edging out its predecessor, the Crazy Light, by 3/10ths of an ounce. We sat down with designer Robbie Fuller to get some insight into the process, and find out what it takes to make a successful sequel.

So where did you guys start with this?

Not from scratch [laughs].

Right – because I know how long the leadouts are, you must have been working on this before the first adiZero Crazy Light came out.

Yes. For sure. There are bits and pieces of the shoe we can trace back for years. But generally when everyone was celebrating over the Crazy Light1, I was at my desk putting pen to paper for the Crazy Light 2.

Were elements from the D. Rose line — did those get incorporated into this, too?

I wouldn’t say directly, but I’m the same guy going after a similar benefit, which is light. So I think of it as a spectrum. If you pick up the Rose shoe, it’s light — sometimes freaky light — but it has the lifestyle a little more into it because the recipe for success for that , but here it’s just laser focus of the lightest basketball shoe of all time, so some of those same solutions like the SPRINTFRAME go across both, but over here we gotta turn up the knob on lightweight.

Was there a specific weight you wanted to hit with the 2, knowing where you were at with the 1?

Lighter than the 1. [Laughs] I mean literally, it was just like, all right we have the Crazy Light 1, we’ve had half a million people all around the world ballin’ in this shoe, D1, NBA, so we know it’s a great shoe, but any shoe can get refined. Any product can get refined. A house, a car, whatever. A [Porsche] 911, right? It doesn’t change over the years that much, just slight tweaks. So in the same vein, I was just looking at this shoe [the 1] like, “all right, did I take enough advantage of the SPRINTFRAME,” “did I take as much advantage of the forefoot support,” of the rubber, could I thin down the rubber? So I really just made a list — I call it a gameplan — marketing gives me a brief, but I’ve got my design gameplan and I just call out the pieces that I thought still had room to improve: who was the sixth man on the Crazy Light 1, you know? It was like, all right, SPRINTFRAME, here we go, you’re gonna step up. That’s definitely how I made it up for this particular shoe, because it’s so geared towards performance — it lives and dies on the performance of it. Trends come and go, winning is always cool. As long as we keep delivering like this, we’ll always be in the mind of anyone lacing up their sneakers.

Is that where you looked to first, the SPRINTFRAME, to lose weight?

Yeah, because it’s the material on the shoe that has the most strength for how much it weighs. So the more you can use it to stabilize the shoe, you’re taking off some of the other layers, the laminates and such that you’d like to reduce. And so, that was definitely the key thing. And the bigger thing was also just about, the first one was just focused on the ultimate court, the NBA court. This one we were like, hey, can this be outdoor? Can you get these things where you thicken up the rubber, you add more abrasion-resistant rubbers, in order to make sure it can play indoor and outdoor. So if you go around the shoe, whether it’s the high-abrasion rubber, how it’s different, we’ve got high abrasion on the toe, the stripes are reflective, little cues from outdoor, one of the materials, the embosses are ripstop from outdoor jackets. So that was another little piece of the pie. The first one was so great, but can you add a little more durability to it. Which is crazy, right? I’m the designer, I’m thinking “hold on, this brief is asking how can I add all these things to it and still make it lighter?” But luckily, with the right team, we came to the right product.

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Real Madrid 2 Bayern Munich 1 (agg 3-3, 2-3 on pens): Shootout agony for Ronaldo and Jose as Germans set up Chelsea final date

It’s Munich in Munich for Chelsea. The hopes of a grand reunion with Jose Mourinho in Bavaria fell apart on a drama-filled night at the Bernabeu.

The German ability to convert penalties proved itself again after two full games and and 30 minutes of extra time could not separate two well-matched sides.

Real Madrid missed three of their first four penalties and Bastian Schweinsteiger drilled in the crucial third for Bayern.

Wunderbar: Bayern Munich celebrate after Bastian Schweinsteiger hit the winning penalty

Wunderbar: Bayern Munich celebrate after Bastian Schweinsteiger hit the winning penalty

Agony: Madrid players react during their penalty shootout defeat at the Bernabeu

Agony: Madrid players react during their penalty shootout defeat at the Bernabeu

Cristiano Ronaldo scored one in normal time but Manuel Neuer saved his opener in the shootout.

Mourinho kissed some religious beads before the penalty duel but then disappeared swiftly down the tunnel. He knew Real’s great chance had gone. They have followed Barcelona out of the Champions League.

An enthralling match saw Real roar into an early two-goal lead, only for Bayern to reply in a non-stop first half. The game began at a blistering pace and by the 14th minute Ronaldo had scored his 53rd and 54th goals of a stellar season for Madrid to wipe out Bayern’s one-goal lead from the first leg.

But the reds of Munich took the punches and jabbed back. They were inspired by Arjen Robben, once of Chelsea, who scored a 27th-minute penalty. Tens of thousands of white flags created a euphoric atmosphere before kick-off.

‘This is our moment,’ Ronaldo had said on Tuesday and that was the unmistakable feel in one of the great cathedrals of football. A huge banner was unveiled that declared: ‘The Years Pass, The Legend Is Eternal’. Bayern could hardly miss the message.

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