UEFA ‘don’t care’ about racism, says England Under-17 World Cup star

first_img0Shares0000FIFA President Gianni Infantino vowed to crack down hard on racist incidents when Russia hosts the World Cup next yearLONDON, United Kingdom, Dec 28 – Rhian Brewster, the leading scorer in England’s Under-17 World Cup victory earlier this year, claimed Thursday that UEFA “don’t really care” about racism.The 17-year-old, who is yet to feature for Liverpool’s first team, says he has witnessed racial abuse — either aimed at him or a teammate — seven times this year. “I don’t think UEFA take this thing seriously. They don’t really care. That is how it feels anyway, like it has been brushed under the carpet,” the teenager told The Guardian.Brewster said UEFA have yet to hold an inquiry into an incident involving Russian side Spartak Moscow three weeks ago where he claims he was the target of a racist remark by opposing captain Leonid Mironov.Mironov denies he made a racial slur during the UEFA Youth League match.Brewster, who says he also suffered abuse in a European Championship Under-17 match against Ukraine and when playing Spanish outfit Sevilla in an Under-19 clash, admits the slurs have an effect.“On the day it happens, that night my head won’t be there. I just want to be left alone,” he said.“I want to be by myself and left to think. The next day I’ll still be thinking about it.Under UEFA’s rules any player found guilty of making racial slurs can be suspended for a minimum of 10 matches.0Shares0000(Visited 2 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

Russia World Cup says yes to drugs… with a doctor’s note

first_img0Shares0000Alcohol will not be sold at World Cup stadiums such as Moscow’s Luzhniki — but a loophole means fans might be able to bring recreational drugs to matches© AFP/File Dmitry SEREBRYAKOVMOSCOW, Russia, Apr 26 – You might have trouble buying a beer on match day in Russia but World Cup fans may still snort cocaine at the stadium — provided they have a doctor’s note.Some peculiar Russian rules are coming to light as the June 14-July 15 football extravaganza draws nearer. One was spotted by intrepid reporters at Russia’s government-friendly Izvestia daily in February and received new attention this week.The loophole in Russia’s no-nonsense approach to recreational drugs — they are all illegal — comes in a loose alliance it forged in 2014 with Belarus and Kazakhstan.The so-called Eurasian Economic Union now groups five ex-Soviet republics and produces reams of rules covering everything from medicine to flowers and pets.One of them determines how foreign visitors to one of the five nations can bring in “narcotics, mood-altering drugs and their precursors”.The list of substances legalised by the regulation includes hard drugs such as cocaine and heroine as well as the much softer marajuana.The entire appendix to the drug regulation is 383 entries long.None of this has been tried in practice and flying to Russia with a stash of hash is probably still not wise.But the regulations do say that all 383 substances are legal as long as the user has a prescription that has been translated into Russian and properly notarised.The note is also supposed to stipulate how much of each drug you intend to take.The World Cup organising committee said security personnel will check for narcotics at the stadiums and only allow in the ones covered by the required paperwork.It is illegal to smoke during matches so the drugs will probably have to be ingested by other means.“All of this is bad,” the health ministry’s addiction psychiatrist Yevgeny Brun told Izvestia.“I do not think that people who come to the World Cup will start dealing marijuana. They are not bringing in that much,” said the doctor.“But I am in shock.”He added that things could turn especially nasty at the stadiums because Russia will also be selling beer made by an official World Cup sponsor.Izvestia said English-speaking doctors will be on hand.Yet going the more traditional route and having a boozy party outside the arena may be more problematic.Alcohol will not be sold within a two-kilometre (1.2-mile) radius of stadiums and fan zones in Moscow throughout the tournament.A Moscow government rule announced this week said the sales restriction will cover “alcohol and refreshment drinks in glass containers”.The other 10 host cities are likely to adopt similar sales bans.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

Moroccan, Tunisian clubs on track for more CAF glory

first_img0Shares0000Egyptian club Zamalek, who have not won an African title for 16 years, were drawn against Hassania Agadir of Morocco in the CAF Confederation Cup quarter-finals © AFP/File / Yasuyoshi CHIBAJOHANNESBURG, South Africa, Mar 21 – Moroccan and Tunisian clubs dodged each other in the CAF Confederation Cup quarter-finals draw in Cairo on Wednesday as they seek a continuation of their dominance in the competition.The two north African countries have won nine of the 15 finals between them in the African equivalent of the UEFA Europa League. Tunisian outfit CS Sfaxien lead the way with a record three titles, including back-to-back victories in 2007 and 2008, and they were drawn against Nkana FC from Zambia.Sfaxien have already eliminated one Zambian club, defeating Green Buffaloes 4-2 on aggregate in a qualifier, and look set to reach the semi-finals.Fellow Tunisians and twice trophy-holders Etoile Sahel will be favoured to eliminate Waleed Bakhet-inspired Al Hilal of Sudan despite patchy form en route to the knockout phase.Bakhet scored twice last weekend in a 4-1 hammering of Nkana to top the scoring charts on six goals with Godwin Aguda from eliminated Enugu Rangers of Nigeria.Gor Mahia of Kenya need to perform better away from Nairobi if they hope to overcome Renaissance Berkane of Morocco, whose stars include Togolese striker Kodjo Fo-Doh Laba.Hopes of two Moroccan semi-finalists could be dashed by nine-time CAF title winners Zamalek of Egypt, who have already defeated Ittihad Tangier from the north African kingdom.Zamalek are long overdue an African title having last succeeded 16 years ago when they lifted the CAF Super Cup.DrawsQuarter-finalsNkana FC (ZAM) v CS Sfaxien (TUN)Etoile Sahel (TUN) v Al Hilal (SUD)Hassania Agadir (MAR) v Zamalek (EGY)Gor Mahia (KEN) v Renaissance Berkane (MAR)First legs: April 7, second: April 14Semi-finalsNkana/Sfaxien v Gor/BerkaneAgadir/Zamalek v Etoile/HilalFirst legs: April 28, second: May 5FinalNkana/Sfaxien/Gor/Berkane v Agadir/Zamalek/Etoile/HilalFirst leg: May 19, second: May 26dl0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

Tír Chonaill Gaels gear up for London Senior Championship

first_imgSeniorsTir Chonaill Gaels defence of the London Senior Championship begins this weekend at Greenford when we face the Round Towers (Sunday, 14 th 4.30pm) and we wish Lloyd and all the boys all the best in this year’s campaign. It will be the second meeting of the two teams in just over a week as the Gaels ran out 0-15 to 1-09 winners against the Towers at Mitcham last weekend to reach the league final and the chance to make it three league titles in a row.JuniorsThe Juniors had another busy week but unfortunately coming out on the wrong end of defeats against St. Kiernan’s in the Homegrown competition(1-11 to 2-06) mid-week and lost out to the Tara’s by the narrowest of margins in the Championship at Greenford at the weekend (2-07 to 2-06). As all season, a massive effort was given by the players and management in both games and good luck to all the team for the rest of the season. Next game is against Naomh Padraig at Greenford at 1pm on Sunday 14 th of August in the league.CongratulationsCongratulations to former player Joe Feeney on his recent marriage. We wish him and his wife happiness and good health for their future together.World GamesGood luck to Lloyd, Patrick and their band of merry man as they head for Dublin this week to take part in the GAA World Games. We hope all the boys have a successful trip back to the old country and have a great tournament.Lottery Results 4th AugustNumbers drawn 2, 8, 17 & 20Jackpot £3,000 – No Winner £25 Lucky Dip Winners:Mick Kennedy, TCGNiall Boyle, TCGMichael McWilliams, TCGRonan Breen, TCGNext draw 11th August at the clubhousePlay online at www. tirchonailgaels.com Thank you for your support!Tír Chonaill Gaels gear up for London Senior Championship was last modified: August 8th, 2016 by Elaine McCalligShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:GAALondonTir Chonaill Gaelslast_img read more

Arsenal eyeing swoop for Ajax star as key man’s contract runs down

first_img Sky Sports presenter apologises for remarks made during Neville’s racism discussion Gerrard launches furious touchline outburst as horror tackle on Barisic sparks chaos Boxing Day fixtures: All nine Premier League games live on talkSPORT Most Popular Football Stories However, the left-back has impressed since joining Ajax and his performances in the second half of last season earned him a spot in Argentina’s squad for the World Cup in Russia last summer.Arsenal are now tracking Tagliafico and could look to swoop for him in January. latest 2 scrap LATEST PAYBACK Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ Tagliafico celebrates scoring in the Champions League. gameday cracker BEST OF The average first-team salaries at every Premier League club in 2019 center_img Tagliafico was a regular for Argentina at World Cup 2018. The Gunners are understood to be in the market for a new left-back to bolster their options there.Nacho Monreal has featured regularly for them this season, but the 32-year-old’s contract is up in the summer and he has not agreed fresh terms yet.Other options, such as Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Sead Kolasinac, have struggled for action due to injury.It has forced Arsenal to consider signing a new left-back and Tagliafico is now firmly on their radar. Every time Ally McCoist lost it on air in 2019, including funny XI reactions Arsenal are monitoring Ajax left-back Nicolas Tagliafico, according to Calciomercato.The 26-year-old only moved to the Netherlands in January from Independiente in a deal worth just £4million. Green reveals how he confronted Sarri after Chelsea’s 6-0 defeat at Man City tense Liverpool news live: Klopp reveals when Minamino will play and issues injury update SORRY Did Mahrez just accidentally reveal Fernandinho is leaving Man City this summer? whoops revealed 2 ‘I’ll get him’ – Robertson further endears himself to fans with revenge vow to Manelast_img read more


first_imgBusiness people from across Donegal were given a masterclass in the delights and dangers of marketing their businesses on the web at a very unique conference yesterday.The event saw Letterkenny Chamber joined forces with Donegal County Enterprise Board to host The Digital Leadership Roadshow at the CoLab in Letterkenny Institute of Technology.The roadshow was created and delivered by web experts iON to highlight the role of management in creating an effective digital marketing plan. It was also aimed to enthuse business owners and managers by presentingthem with cutting edge advice by one of Ireland’s top Digital ThoughtLeaders.The Roadshow was presented by Niall McKeown, Commercial Director and founder of iON. Niall has been an internet entrepreneur for over a decade and hasextensive experience in digital marketing strategies, sales, businessgrowth, new product development and new technologies.His business has grown from a small email marketing company to an organisation with customers in 15 countries. As well as small businesses iON also consults with major Irish and worldwide brands.Toni Forrester, Letterkenny Chamber CEO said the event did exactly what it was meant to do. “Niall left the audience today with a lot to think about in terms of their digitalmarketing.“He covered some great examples of businesses doing it right andgave us all tips on the very important starting points in terms of developing a marketing and digital marketing strategy.“Vision, time and passion are not normally associated as digital marketing terms but to do it right a business needs all three and needs to really understand its customer and potential customer.“The audience went away challenged but also inspired to do it right and their strategies will come to fruition over coming months and years to make digital marketing work for their business.”At the event also launched Donegal Digital Skillnet that will deliversubsidised training to help Donegal Companies boost sales through theirdigital marketing strategies.Much of the training already in place will be the practical tools and skills needed to drive digital marketing campaigns coupled with the digital marketing strategy training that Niall enthused about.“The Skillnet is enterprise driven and we are keen to hear what trainingbusinesses need so we are asking people to register with us as soon aspossible and if they have a specific need we want to hear from them.“There are huge opportunities and we want to work alongside businesses to help them harness what opportunities they can and Donegal Digital will respond effectively to their needs. ”For more information log on to www.donegaldigital.com.EndsDONEGAL BUSINESSES GIVEN MASTER CLASS IN DIGITAL MARKETING was last modified: September 14th, 2011 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Donegal Enterprise BoardLetterkenny Chamber of Commercelast_img read more


first_imgThomas Pringle TD has called for an independent inquiry into whether the Ombudsman’s office had been bugged following yesterday’s committee hearing where GSOC chair expressed surveillance concerns.“Yesterday’s meeting with GSOC chair Simon O’Brien, which I attended, where he laid out his concerns on possible surveillance has solidified the fact that a full independent inquiry is the only way forward in this matter,” the Donegal TD said tonight.“Up until the meeting held by the Oireachtas Committee on Public Service Oversight and Petitions we had the Taoiseach and Minister Shatter insisting that there is nothing to report or investigate. We now know, as had been strongly suspected, that this is far from the case. “Instead of recognising the critical importance of this matter we have had the powers that be go on the attack and question the integrity of the Ombudsman’s Commission, rather than taking the reports seriously and dealing with them. We have even been treated to our Taoiseach wrongly quoting a supposed obligation on GSOC to report this issue to the Minister, and thereby trying to cast a doubt in the public mind about the issue.“In a functioning democracy the reaction of the leader of the state to such serious reports should be to initiate an investigation without delay by an independent body to get to the bottom of the issue and find out where culpability lies, but instead he has gone on the attack. There is a major crisis here and a very serious challenge to our democracy that cannot be ignored.“The least we should be able to expect is that our government would be concerned about this. It should be blatantly obvious to everyone that there is an urgent need to have this incident investigated fully and independently to restore confidence in the administration of justice. We have to be assured that the Ombudsman’s Commission can carry on its work providing oversight and accountability for the Gardaí.“I call on the Minister and the government to initiate a comprehensive independent investigation into whether the Ombudsman’s office had been bugged. Only an external investigation can achieve that and restore all our trust,” stated Pringle.  PRINGLE DEMANDS INDEPENDENT INQUIRY INTO OMBUDSMAN ‘BUGGING’ was last modified: February 13th, 2014 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:buggingOMBUDSMANThomas Pringlelast_img read more


first_imgJust 30 out of 57 applications for Donegal sporting organisations have been approved in a €1M funding package announced today.Minister Michael RingThe allocations have been welcomed by Dinny McGinly TD and Junior Minister Joe McHugh.Minister of State for Sports & Tourism, Michael Ring, T.D. announced that a total allocation of €1.065 Million has been approved for Sporting Organisations in County Donegal under the Sports Capital Programme, 2015. While there were 57 applications from Donegal, a significant number were ‘invalid.’Organisations in the County that had been allocated funding include:-Gweedore Celtic Football Club €70,000Keadue Rovers Football Club €100,000Forbairt Pobail Ghleann Gaothbarra (Na Rossa GAA Club) €70,000Donegal Town Soccer Club €21,000Lifford Pistol & Rifle Association €52,000Naomh Chonaill GAA Club €5,500Donegal Famine Heritage Centre Dunfanaghy €13,000Ballyshannon Basketball Club €20,000Ballyshannon Rugby Football Club €7,000Convoy Amateur Boxing Club €14,000Donegal Sports Partnership €9,000Dunfanaghy Boxing Club €14,000St., John Bosco Club €16,000Twin Towns Boxing Club €20,000Aislann Chill Chartha Teo €15,000Deputy McGinley welcomed these allocations and said “that the expenditure would greatly improve sporting and recreational facilities throughout the County and will be of benefit to all and particularly our young people”. Furthermore, he congratulated the successful applicants. Minister of State Joe McHugh TD, has said that funding of over €1 million for sports clubs and organisations in Donegal is great news and a great boost for local communities.“I want to congratulate all the clubs who are receiving funding through this programme announced today, these much needed funds are used in clubs and communities across the County and directly benefit the people living in these areas.“I also want to highlight the on-going work all year round that is being done by community groups and individuals, most of whom are volunteers, who do incredible work throughout the County and have done so through really difficult years. I hope today’s funding will help build on this work that is being done.“In total, funding of over €41 million is being made available to clubs and local organisations around the country under the Sports Capital Programme 2015, announced by Minister of State Michael Ring today.“It is very welcome that once again, Sports Capital funding is being provided to clubs and local organisations here in Donegal and around the country “The economic recovery allowed this Government to re-instate the Sports Capital Programme, after it was closed by Fianna Fáil during the recession. We understand the importance of sport to communities around the country and the imperative to fund it. Money spent on sport, is money saved on healthcare down the road. According to the Department of Sport, 90% of Sports Capital recipients say it has helped them to increase the numbers of people involved in sport.”JUST 30 OF 57 DONEGAL SPORT CLUBS SHARE IN €1M FUNDING PACKAGE was last modified: October 8th, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:donegalfundingMichael RingSportlast_img read more


first_imgThe man is spotted holding a cash register after breaking into the Letterkenny Garden Centre.This is the suspect who Gardai want to speak to following a break-in at a Letterkenny business.The man, who was wearing just shorts and a t-shirt, was caught on CCTV during a break-in at the premises yesterday.The burglary took place at Letterkenny Garden Centre (formerly Gary’s Petworld) on the town’s Pearse Road during the early hours of the morning. The owners estimate that more than €1,000 of damage was caused as well as cash taken during the robbery.The man entered the premises after scaling an 8ft wall before smashing a glass door with a large plant pot around 12.18am.The man then stole two cash register tills before escaping on foot after just three minutes inside the premises.A Garda forensics team have carried out an investigation at the premises and they are also studying CCTV footage. A spokesman for the Garden Centre told Donegal Daily they are hopeful someone may identify the suspect on the CCTV.“Someone must know him. He caused a lot of damage and stole the two tills which are worth a lot of money on their own. He made his getaway on foot and it was only after midnight so someone could easily have seen where he went.“We would appeal to anybody who may know this person to contact the Gardai with any information. Small businesses are being broken into all the time and it’s time it stopped,” said the spokesman. SUSPECT CAUGHT ON CCTV BREAKING INTO GARDEN CENTRE was last modified: October 14th, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:burglarydonegalGardaiLetterkenny Garden Centrelast_img read more

Serie A: Juventus faces Lazio test as Napoli, Atalanta eye easy three points

first_img Tags: AC MilanAtalantaItalian Serie AjuventusLazionapoli Atalanta vs Hellas VeronaGewiss Stadium, BergamoSaturday, 07-12-2019 @5pmAtalanta are showing signs of slowing down in their chase for a Champions League spot, so a win could prove essential against tenacious Verona.The Bergamaschi managed only five points in their last five matches, with coach Gian Piero Gasperini admitting the team’s form has been affected by their European duties. La Dea, nonetheless, still have a decent chance of reaching the last 16 in the Champions League, but that means they have to beat Shakhtar Donetsk and hope already-qualified Manchester City do not lose against Dinamo Zagreb.Fresh from a home defeat against Roma, Hellas Verona and their mean defence will now face Serie A’s most prolific attack. Last year, their games with Atalanta finished in 5-0 and 3-0 defeats, although Fabio Pecchia was at the helm of Verona back then.Atalanta were dealt a heavy blow this week when Colombian striker Duvan Zapata announced there is no precise date for his return, the injury proving “very serious and complicated”. The 28-year-old has been sidelined with an injury to a thigh tendon, picked up while on international duty in October.Although many expected Zapata to be fit for the match against Brescia last week, the Colombian has now confirmed he might not even be back in time to face Shakhtar.Gasperini’s other injury worries concern Marten de Roon and Simon Kjaer, who trained separately from the rest of the team. The Danish defender is almost certain to miss the match against Verona.Ivan Juric is still uncertain regarding Marash Kumbulla, Daniel Bessa and Lubomir Tupta, with all set for further evaluation in upcoming training sessions. Koray Gunter will miss out due to suspension.Verona have won only one of their last 15 Serie A trips to Atalanta, 2-1 in 2014, along with eight defeats and six draws.Udinese vs NapoliDacia Arena, UdineSaturday,07-12-2019 @8pmNapoli begin a run of games that could decide their season on Saturday, when they travel to an Udinese side on a high from their cup exploits.A campaign that promised so much has so far disappointed in equal measure, with Napoli on a run of eight matches without a win, the last of which came back in mid-October.The Partenopei’s problems go way beyond the pitch as their players are still coming to terms with being fined by President Aurelio De Laurentiis after they refused to take part in a punitive training retreat.However, there were no such qualms when Carlo Ancelotti decided to place them ‘in ritiro’ leading up this game, amidst mounting speculation about the coach’s future.It is rumoured poor results against Udinese and at home to Racing Genk in the Champions League next week could cost Carletto his job and, in turn, write off the club’s season.Their task has been made all the more difficult by Allan, Arkadiusz Milik, Faouzi Ghoulam all training alone yesterday, while Kevin Malcuit is a long-term casualty and Dries Mertens is struggling with flu.Udinese, meanwhile, have suffered back-to-back Serie A defeats but thrashed Bologna 4-0 last night to book a Coppa Italia last-16 date with Juventus.Victory over Napoli could move them seven points clear of the relegation zone, and they have only Mato Jajalo and Watford loanee Ken Sema to assess before the match.Napoli have won all of their last three trips to Dacia Arena.Lazio vs JuventusStadio Olimpico, RomeSaturday, 07-12-2019 @10:45pmLazio are on a spectacular run of six consecutive Serie A victories and sit in third place as they host a Juventus side that dropped into second.These teams will meet again later this month in the Italian Super Cup in Saudi Arabia, as Coppa Italia holders and Scudetto winners respectively.With 33 goals to their name, Simone Inzaghi’s side are the top scorers in Serie A, and they have an impressive defensive record to match it, with only 14 conceded. A full three points against the Turin giants would reinforce their credentials as genuine top four challengers, so with Inter and Roma also clashing this weekend, it could throw the race for the Champions League places, and title, wide open.The Aquile are the form side at the moment with six wins on the bounce. Ciro Immobile netted twice to make it 17 goals in just 14 Serie A games this season. Influential play maker Luis Alberto continued his fine form, as he added a goal from the penalty spot to his nine season assists, and the Rome side will be full of confidence heading into this game that they can upset Sarri’s side.Lazio will be without Jordan Lukaku, Patric, Valon Berisha and Adam Marusic. Joaquin Correa should get the nod rather than Felipe Caicedo alongside Capocannoniere Immobile.Juventus will be keen to bounce back from last week’s disappointing draw against Sassuolo, where the 2-2 draw didn’t represent the Bianconeri’s dominance. A combination of errors from Matthijs De Ligt and Gianluigi Buffon gifted Sassuolo a goal, whilst it was an extremely wasteful Juventus side in front of goal, racking up an xG of 4.35 compared to Sassuolo’s 0.70. The draw ended a run of four straight league victories, and dropped Juventus down to second.Cristiano Ronaldo has struggled for form in recent weeks, and the pressure will be on the Portuguese forward to perform in such a titanic clash. Averaging 6.22 shots per 90 minutes, he hasn’t been afraid to go for goal, and with the media attention building round his performances, he will be keen to perform in the big game once again.Juventus are without long-term absentees Giorgio Chiellini and Marko Pjaca, whilst Adrien Rabiot and Douglas Costa are also expected to miss out. Sami Khedira has been ruled out until January, as the injuries mount for Sarri’s side.Simone Inzaghi has never beaten Maurizio Sarri, while Lazio have not beaten Juventus in Serie A since 2003, managing three draws from 11 encounters.Lecce vs GenoaStadio Comunale Via del Mare, LecceSunday, 08-12-2019 @2:30pmThis could turn out to be a massive result in the race to avoid relegation, as Genoa find themselves in the bottom three visiting surprise outfit Lecce.The Salentini clearly had their minds on this match when playing the Coppa Italia on Tuesday night, putting out a depleted side and losing 5-1 to SPAL.They can take confidence however in Serie A after their remarkable 0-1 away victory in Florence, which propelled them into joint 14th place with Sassuolo and Udinese. They will fancy their chances of registering their first home win of the season against a struggling Genoa side, who sit in the drop zone.Rookie coach Thiago Motta is under serious pressure to get a result in this one and scraping through their own Coppa Italia tie 3-2 against Serie B outfit Ascoli has done little to inspire confidence.The Champions League winner will need to use all his experience to pull something out the bag and take the Grifone out of the drop zone. They will also hope that fellow city rivals Sampdoria are defeated for that to happen.Genoa struck the woodwork twice against Torino, but are really struggling to hit the net in general with the injury to Christian Kouame. Cristian Zapata is also unavailable and will be a blow to the defence.Fabio Liverani was delighted with the win in Florence, claiming that it will bring his players more self-esteem and awareness of their own capabilities. He also confirmed that Marco Mancosu, Luka Dumancic, Diego Farias and Biagio Meccariello will probably all be out and could be replaced by four Primavera players. The coach was saying he wanted another victory before facing their next opponents Milan.Gianluca Lapadula is still suspended after his sending off in the Cagliari match. Lecce should start with Yevhen Shakhov behind Filippo Falco and Khouma Babacar, who came in for some stick recently from the manager for his finishing.The visitors should start with Goran Pandev and Kevin Agudelo supporting Andrea Pinamonti.The only time Lecce beat Genoa in Serie A was back in 1990, along with four draws and seven defeats, home and away.Sassuolo vs CagliariMAPEI Stadium, Reggio nell’EmiliaSunday, 08-12-2019 @5pmCagliari keep on surprising, as their dramatic 4-3 thriller against Sampdoria kept them in joint fourth, but Sassuolo are fresh from stalling Juventus.The Neroverdi have only won once in their last six matches between league and cup competitions, which was a 3-1 home victory against Bologna in November.However, Roberto De Zerbi’s men put in a good performance in Turin and came away with a 2-2 draw after Cristiano Ronaldo equalised from the penalty spot to save the Old Lady’s blushes. A delicate lob from Ivory Coast winger Jeremie Boga and Francesco Caputo’s seventh league goal of the season had put the Emilia-Romagna club 2-1 up.Despite taking points off the Bianconeri for the first time away from home in Serie A, Sassuolo failed to capitalise on that good result by being knocked out of the Coppa Italia when they were defeated 2-1 by Perugia.De Zerbi has several injury concerns going into this game with defenders Gianmarco Ferrari and Vlad Chiriches ruled out, while his attacking options are limited, as both Domenico Berardi and Gregoire Defrel are expected to be out until the new year.Andrea Consigli is injured and Gianluca Pegolo not fully fit, so we could see 18-year-old Stefano Turati start again in goal after his impressive debut against Juve.Cagliari, on the other hand, are unbeaten in their last 12 league matches, since losing 2-1 at home to Inter at the start of September. The Isolani have won eight times during that run, drawing the other four.The Rossoblu came from 3-1 down at home against Sampdoria in their last outing to win 4-3 in a remarkable game that saw Alberto Cerri’s 96th-minute goal seal the comeback and give his side the three points.Rolando Maran’s men faced the same opposition midweek at home in the Coppa Italia, emerging with a 2-1 victory despite rotating the squad.Robin Olsen is still sitting out a lengthy ban following his altercation with Lecce striker Gianluca Lapadula in their 2-2 draw. First choice ‘keeper Alessio Cragno is a long-term injury absentee, so Brazilian veteran Rafael will again come in to play between the sticks. Striker Leonardo Pavoletti is ruled out until the spring, while Valter Birsa is also on the treatment table, but Fabrizio Cacciatore returns from suspension.Sassuolo love to keep possession, while Cagliari are brimming with confidence, so expect an open and entertaining game.Cagliari have never won at Sassuolo in Serie A, managing three draws and two defeats here.SPAL vs BresciaStadio Paolo Mazza, FerraraSunday, 08-12-2019 @5pmThe bottom two sides will go head to head when SPAL lock horns with Brescia on Sunday, as Eugenio Corini returns to the Rondinelle bench.With crushing inevitability, Brescia President Massimo Cellino changed his mind and recalled Corini just a month after the Fabio Grosso experiment failed miserably. In an attempt to reverse their fortunes, the newly promoted side opted to fire Corini and bring in the 2006 World Cup winner, only to lose all three of their matches, failing to score in the process, and so they have chosen to go back to square one.The gamble they took on bringing in Mario Balotelli has also backfired, as the enigmatic striker has made more headlines for issues off the pitch than his contributions on it, and has not been able to make the impact that the club had hoped. Brescia have scored just a measly 10 goals so far this season, whilst shipping 26 in what has been a torrid term back in the top flight, but their upcoming hosts have not fared that much better, either.With nine goals scored so far, SPAL’s attack are the joint-worst performing in the league, alongside Udinese. The hosts have conceded 21 times, five fewer than Brescia, so this could be an opportunity for them to get some points on the board – especially if they can get their attack up and running like they did in their recent 5-1 Coppa Italia victory against Lecce.One would be forgiven for thinking that was an entirely different team, as Leonardo Semplici’s squad put five past their opponents midweek, but will they be able to replicate the same kind of performance on Sunday evening as they look to end their poor run of form in the league?SPAL are without Gabriel Strefezza, Jacopo Sala, Federico Di Francesco, Mohamed Fares and Marco D’Alessandro. Brescia have Daniele Dessena on the treatment table, while goalkeeper Jesse Joronen is a major doubt, so we could see Enrico Alfonso between the sticks.Brescia has only beaten SPAL once in Serie A (D3, L2).Torino vs FiorentinaStadio Olimpico Grande Torino, TorionSunday, 08-12-2019 @5pmTorino host a struggling Fiorentina side who have lost three consecutive Serie A matches and Vincenzo Montella will be under pressure to secure a result.Walter Mazzarri’s Torino have had an inconsistent season up to this point, as they currently lie in 10th place and eight points off a Europa League spot, but two wins from their last three games will provide some inspiration for the Granata.Last week Torino showed their resilience with a 1-0 victory over Genoa at Stadio Luigi Ferraris with a 76th-minute header from Brazilian centre-back Bremer, having connected with Simone Verdi’s free-kick.Torino will again be without star striker Andrea Belotti, who missed last weekend’s victory with a thigh injury, and news came out this week that it is worse than originally feared. Alex Berenguer is likely to keep his place against Fiorentina ahead of Simone Zaza, despite the lack of alternatives. Simone Edera will be out through suspension, whilst Iago Falque, Lyanco and Vincenzo Milico are all ruled out with injuries.Fiorentina are desperate to find some positive form, as Montella finds himself in a precarious situation and rather than fighting for a European place, the Viola could find themselves in another relegation battle. The 1-0 loss at home to Lecce was unexpected despite their poor form and Fiorentina must do everything to avoid another defeat this weekend.Fans will be sweating over the fitness of Federico Chiesa, who is expected to play from the start after muscular issues, but Franck Ribery and German Pezzella are certainly ruled out by injury.The major issue for both sides this season has been finding the back of the net and capitalising on their chances in games. Fiorentina’s joint highest scorers are Gaetano Castrovilli, Nikola Milenkovic and Erick Pulgar on three goals. Much of their creativity in the final third relies upon Chiesa and Ribery, so with the Frenchman out this weekend, Montella will have to find a different strategy for the Viola.Interestingly, visitors Fiorentina have scored in 19 of their last 20 meetings with Torino in Serie A and only lost on two occasions. This game could buck the trend for both sides this season, as the previous five times the Viola have visited Stadio Olimpico there have been 14 goals with an average 2.8 goals per match.Fiorentina have lost only two of their last 20 Serie A meetings with Torino, home and away, winning 10 and drawing eight. They were both in Turin in 2015 and 2016.Sampdoria vs ParmaStadio Comunale Luigi Ferraris, GenoaSunday, 08-12-2019 @8pmParma will have Napoli in their sights when they face Claudio Ranieri’s Sampdoria in Serie A on Sunday.Despite just one win in their last six League games, Parma are just two points seventh-placed Napoli, who are faring even worse, without a Serie A victory since October 19.A return to winning ways at the Tardini would not only see them possibly leapfrog the Partenopei, but it would also serve as a real statement of their intentions for a top-six finish.The dazzling performances of Gervinho and wantaway winger Dejan Kulusevski have been the inspiration behind the Ducali’s bright start, and the pair are available against Samp.However, fellow forwards Roberto Inglese and Yann Karamoah are still weeks away from returning.Samp, meanwhile, saw a mini-revival under Ranieri ended by back-to-back defeats at Cagliari in the League and cup.The former was particularly damning for the Blucerchiati as they proceeded to throw away a two-goal lead against the Sardinians.Nonetheless, they will have been boosted by midfielder Karol Linetty completing 90 minutes as captain midweek, especially with Andrea Bertolacci not due back for another month.Fabio Depaoli, Federico Bonazzoli and defender Bartosz Berezsynski are also sidelined, while Edgar Barreto is touch-and-go.The last time these two sides played out a goalless draw was all the way back in 1990.Bologna vs AC MilanStadio Renato Dall’Arra, BolognaSunday, 08-12-2019 @10:45pmOnly one point separates these teams going into the weekend, as Bologna and Milan are fresh from morale-boosting victories.Both remain in the bottom half of the Serie A table after 14 rounds, closer to the relegation zone than the European places. There were some signs of improvement last week, as the Rossoneri secured their first victory under Stefano Pioli by beating Parma. As for the Felsinei, the comeback to conquer Napoli at the Stadio San Paolo came after coach Sinisa Mihajlovic spent all week in training with his squad, something he hadn’t been able to do since starting treatment for leukemia in July.Pioli will be hoping to replicate the Parma performance against Bologna, as his young side controlled the game and kept their discipline and shape. Giacomo Bonaventura showed his ability pulling the strings in the midfield and should again start with Suso and Krzysztof Piatek. The Polish striker has only found the net three times this season, he has an expected goals (xG) figure of 6.26, which suggests he has been unlucky not to score more.Lucas Paqueta missed the Parma game with injury, but should be back in the starting XI. Leo Duarte and Mattia Caldara remain on the absentee list.Bologna have struggled defensively to date, conceding 23 times in 14 games, six more than the visitors Milan. Gary Medel is suspended for this clash, joining injured Roberto Soriano Federico Santander, Mitchell Dijks and possibly also Ladislav Krejci in the stands.Milan have lost only one of their last 19 Serie A matches against Bologna (13W, 5D), a 1-0 setback in January 2016. At the time, the coach on the Rossoneri bench was Mihajlovic.Milan are unbeaten at the Stadio Dall’Ara in Serie A since March 2002, leaving with nine victories and four draws.Comments last_img read more