Document 345266

Gulf Daily News Tuesday, 21st October 2014
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Pellegrini wary of empty stadium in CSKA clash
MOSCOW: Manchester City manager Manuel
Pellegrini has said playing in an empty stadium won’t help his side when they travel to
Russia for their potentially decisive Champions League match against CSKA Moscow today.
European football governing body Uefa have ordered
CSKA to play the game behind closed doors because of
racist behaviour by their fans – something City have direct
experience of after Yaya Toure was on the receiving end of
verbal abuse when the clubs met last season.
But Pellegrini does not believe this will give the
reigning Premier League champions, still struggling to
make their mark on Europe’s elite club competition, an
advantage in the Russian capital.
“I think that affects football. I don’t think it is the
best way to play, not only for our team but for the Russian team,” Pellegrini said. “I think football is about
the fans. It is the most important thing because they
give an atmosphere at the stadium which is different to
an empty stadium. It will be a different experience but
that cannot affect our performance,”
City badly need victories in both their matches with
CSKA, having been beaten by Bayern Munich and
drawn at home to Roma in their opening Group E fixtures.
“We have two games against CSKA Moscow in the
Champions League that we need to win both of them,”
said Pellegrini.
“The best way is to treat every game as a final, try
to win it and then win the next final,” added Pellegrini, whose side will travel to Russia on the back of a
4-1 win over Tottenham Hotspur where striker Sergio
Aguero scored all of their goals.
Defender Eliaquim Mangala was expected to travel
despite a thigh injury but midfielder Samir Nasri was
due to stay behind while recovering from groin surgery.
CSKA enjoyed an even more emphatic victory last
weekend, routing Kuban Krasnodar 6-0 to narrow the
gap to Russian league leaders Zenit St Petersburg to
just two points.
Barca face ‘real
risk’ against Ajax
BARCELONA: Barcelona need to avoid getting
sucked into the Spanish obsession with El Clasico
when they face Ajax Amsterdam in the Champions
League today.
All eyes in Spain are on leaders Barca’s visit to Real Madrid
next Saturday which could see the possible debut of Uruguay forward Luis Suarez after his four-month ban for biting Italian Giorgio Chiellini at the World Cup.
With so much interest, there is a real risk that the visit of fourtimes European champions Ajax could take a back seat and be
treated as a mere warm-up.
However, defeat in their previous outing against Paris St Germain means that Barca cannot afford to be complacent, even if
Ajax are nowadays a provider of young talent for other European
clubs rather than a force in their own right.
Paris St Germain lead Group F with four points followed by
Barca on three points and Ajax on two.
“The most important game
for us now is against Ajax and
we want to play well in that
CSKA v Man City
so that we are in good condi(Starting at 7pm, Bahrain time)
tion for the El Clasico,” Javier
AS Roma v Bayern
Mascherano told reporters after
(Starting at 9.45pm, Bahrain time)
Saturday’s 3-0 win over Eibar.
“You cannot live in the past
or for games that are going to
(Starting at 9.45pm, Bahrain time)
Barcelona v Ajax
take place in the future,” he
(Starting at 9.45pm, Bahrain time)
“The match against Ajax is
Chelsea v Maribor
important for us and we need to
(Starting at 9.45pm, Bahrain time)
be fully focused on that. If we
Schalke v Sporting
don’t play well on Tuesday then
(Starting at 9.45pm, Bahrain time)
that can also change the mood
and we want to play well and be
BATE v Shakhtar Donetsk
ready for the El Clasico.
(Starting at 9.45pm, Bahrain time)
“We need to continue imPorto v Athletic Bilbao
proving aspects despite the
(Starting at 9.45pm, Bahrain time)
win,” he added. “Even when
we weren’t able to score we did both started against Eibar denot panic and kept on trying.
spite long trips for recent inter“There is also a physical el- national matches and between
ement as well because in the them they have scored 17 of
second half our rivals have Barca’s 25 goals so far.
problems against us. Playing
Barca coach Luis Enrique
with intensity and forcing the admitted that Messi’s value to
opposition back into their own the team made it difficult to
area means that they tire.”
leave him out.
Lionel Messi and Neymar
“I look at who to give a break
National Football League on Sunday
(home team in CAPS):
29 Atlanta
17 Minnesota
24 New Orleans
38 Carolina
27 Cincinnati
24 Cleveland
28 Seattle
19 Tennessee
Kansas City
31 NY Giants
n Suarez, right, vies with
Barcelona team mates during
a training session on the eve of
their match against Ajax
Liverpool battle
MADRID: Real Madrid look set
to be without Gareth Bale for
their Champions League trip to
Liverpool tomorrow after a scan
revealed the Welshman has an
abdominal injury.
“After the tests carried out on Gareth
Bale by the Real Madrid medical
team, a muscular injury has been
diagnosed in his right pyramidalis
muscle,” the club said in a statement
yesterday without stating how long
they expect Bale to be sidelined.
The pyramidalis is a small muscle
of the anterior abdominal wall.
The 25-year-old was an unused
substitute in Madrid’s 5-0
thrashing of Levante on Saturday.
And Real boss Carlo Ancelotti
insisted after that game he
wouldn’t take any risks with
Bale’s fitness given his side face
an even more demanding task
when Barcelona visit the Santiago
Bernabeu on Saturday. However,
Madrid sports daily AS reported
yesterday that Bale will also miss
the first El Clasico of the season.
n Chelsea rule out Costa
LONDON: Chelsea will be without
striker Diego Costa for their
Champions League clash at
home to Maribor today.
“He hasn’t trained because he’s
not in condition to do so,” manager
Jose Mourinho told a news
conference yesterday. “It’s the
same problem that he is having,
it’s simple. Let’s see what happens
for the next weekend.”
Costa, who has made a stunning
start to his Chelsea career with
nine Premier League goals since
joining from Atletico Madrid,
has been struggling with a
hamstring injury and did not
play in the 2-1 defeat of Crystal
Palace on Saturday.
Chelsea are well-placed in
Group G with four points from
their opening two fixtures but
have several players unavailable
for the visit of the Slovenian
outsiders to Stamford Bridge.
Midfielders John Obi Mikel,
Andre Schurrle and Ramires
will all play no part while striker
Didier Drogba is not fit enough
to play for 90 minutes, according
to Mourinho.
n Fatal goal celebration
to including Messi but later I
think to myself if you don’t
play him you will miss out on
the goals he scores,” he said.
“I think over what they say
and how the players are feeling.
During the season he will have
San Francisco
n Bale doubtful for
Final round of the US PGA Tour Shriners
Hospitals Open in Las Vegas on Sunday
(USA unless noted, par-71):
264 - Ben Martin 68-66-62-68; 266 - Kevin
Streelman 71-67-63-65; 268 - Russell Knox
(SCO) 65-67-66-70; 269 - Webb Simpson
69-65-67-68, Brooks Koepka 69-68-64-68,
Jimmy Walker 69-69-62-69; 270 - Tony Finau
68-65-70-67, David Hearn (CAN) 70-66-6668, Scott Piercy 67-67-67-69; 271 - Adam
Hadwin (CAN) 67-72-69-63, Scott Brown
70-67-68-66, Hideki Matsuyama (JPN) 66-
a break but I think it is a special
moment for the team and him at
the moment.
“Sometimes I sit there on the
bench and think to myself how
lucky I am to have Messi. It is
not just what he can do but also
71-68-66, Robert Streb 71-67-67-66, Spencer Levin 71-63-68-69, Brandt Snedeker
67-68-67-69; 272 - Nick Watney 68-69-6966, Harris English 71-68-66-67; 273 - Carlos
Ortiz (MEX) 69-70-69-65, Charles Howell 7069-67-67, John Senden (AUS) 70-68-68-67,
Colt Knost 68-72-65-68, Hudson Swafford
69-67-68-69, Jim Herman 68-72-62-71,
Martin Laird (SCO) 64-70-68-71, Jason Bohn
68-68-66-71, Alex Cejka (GER) 69-68-65-71,
Andrew Svoboda 66-67-67-73.
National Hockey League on Sunday:
NY Rangers
Los Angeles
the stimulus he provides for the
Ajax are second in the Eredivisie and came from behind to
draw 1-1 against Twente on Saturday with Kolbeinn Sigthorsson scoring in the second half.
St Louis
San Jose
Valencia Open 500 at L’Agora (seedings
in parentheses):
Men’s Singles First Round
Pablo Carreno Busta, Spain, bt Marcel Granollers, Spain, 6-2, 3-1, retired.
Martin Klizan, Slovakia, bt Stefan Kozlov,
United States, 6-3, 6-3.
Lu Yen-Hsun, Taiwan, bt Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, Spain, 6-2, 6-3.
Men’s Doubles:
NEW DELHI: A 23-year-old Indian
footballer has died from severe spinal
cord damage after attempting to
celebrate a goal with a somersault, an
official said yesterday.
Bethlehem Vengthlang FC
midfielder Peter Biaksangzuala
died on Sunday at a hospital in
the northeastern Indian state of
Mizoram after the incident in
Tuesday’s match in the third tier
Mizoram Premier League (MPL).
“We are shocked by the case. We at
the Mizoram Football Association
did all we could but could not
save him,” MFA secretary
Lalnghinglova Hmar said.
After scoring the equaliser against
Chanmari West FC, a flipping
Biaksangzuala landed awkwardly
and was lying unconscious as his
team mates surrounded him and
gestured for help.
“The association president also
being the state health minister,
he did all that was possible even
though he was out of station.”
Leonardo Mayer, Argentina, and Joao Sousa,
Portugal, bt Alexander Peya, Austria, and
Bruno Soares (1), Brazil, 3-6, 6-1, 10-7.
David Marrero, Spain, and Fernando Verdasco (3), Spain, bt Pablo Andujar, Spain, and
Daniel Gimeno-Traver, Spain, 6-4, 6-4.
Kevin Anderson, South Africa, and Jeremy
Chardy, France, bt Feliciano Lopez, Spain,
and Max Mirnyi, Belarus, 6-4, 7-6 (2).
Swiss Indoors Basel at St. Jakobshalle
(seedings in parentheses):
Men’s Singles First Round
Rafael Nadal (2), Spain, bt Simone Bolelli,
Italy, 6-2, 6-2; Donald Young, United States,
def. Carlos Berlocq, Argentina, 7-6 (5), 6-4.