ROME. Italy coach Marcello Lippi on Wednesday said he would not select two players for his squad if they were openly involved in a homos...
ROME. Italy coach Marcello Lippi on Wednesday said he would not select two players for his squad if they were openly involved in a homosexual relationship. But the veteran coach, who led Italy to World Cup glory in 2006, insisted that choice was not due to homophobia but due to the requirements of team morale. "In the current climate, two national team players could never be involved in an open relationship," he told a web-TV station.Lippi has previously stated that in 40 years in football he has never met a homosexual and that there are no gay players.
MADRID. Real Madrid's Dutch international midfielder Wesley Sneijder is defiantly refusing a move toInter Milan, with some reports hinting a love interest is keeping his feet firmly in the Spanish capital. Sneijder is one of several players Real are trying to offload to counterbalance the mega-millions purchase ofKaka, Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema and Xabi Alonso. Real president Florentino Perez has already spent over 250 million euros on players so far.
SAO PAULO. The coach of a second-division soccer club in Brazil says armed men threatened players in the locker room after a loss. Four men carrying guns confronted the players following a 2-1 home loss to Vila Nova on Tuesday, Portuguesa coach Rene Simoes said. The defeat extended the team's winless streak to six games.Players said they have been subject to threats for some time because of the team's poor showing
ROME. Italian cyclist Danilo Di Luca on Wednesday claimed he was the victim of a conspiracy after twice testing positive for banned blood booster EPO (erythropoietin) during May's Tour of Italy. Di Luca finished second in the event he previously won in 2007 but returned positive tests for the new-generation EPO called Cera on both May 22 and 28.
BRUSSELS. Top Belgian cyclist Tom Boonen has been told that all criminal charges relating to his use of cocaine will be dropped if he pays a 1000 euro fine, the public prosecutor in Turnhout said Wednesday. The court said if Boonen, a former world champion and Tour de France stage winner who is a specialist in the Belgian one-day classics, paid the fine the case would be closed. He first tested positive in April 2008.