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last updated: Thu, 23 Oct 2014 03:01:48 -0400

10 Things to See in Sports: AP's top sports photos

10ThingstoSeeSports - Crystal Palace's Fraizer Campbell, left, competes for the ball with Chelsea’s Thibaut Courtois during their English Premier League soccer match at Selhurst Park, London, Saturday, Oct. 18, 2014. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland, File)Here's a look at some of the defining moments, exciting scenes, triumphs and defeats from the world of sports.

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Sport | The Guardian
last updated: Thu, 23 Oct 2014 16:11:43 GMT2014-10-23T16:11:43Z

Tottenham Hotspur v Asteras Tripoli: Europa League live!

85 mins Lennon has come on for Townsend.

84 mins Squeaky bum time and all that:

Celtic 2-1 FC Astra.

Kane had broke into the box but Kosicky saved his effort from a few yards out. The ball broke across the goal and Fazio galloped to gather it. Once with the ball under control, he looked up and chipped a delightful one to the middle of the box. Under little pressure, Kane headed it home.

5 - Harry Kane has now scored five goals in his last four games for Tottenham (all competitions). Hurricane.

Theres the hat-trick.

80 mins Celtic, by the way, are two to the good but our Scottish correspondent is less than impressed.

Saving grace for Celtic fans- imagine this team in the Champions League.

78 mins We have some Spurs subs to tell you about. Chadli is on for Adebayor and Eriksen replaces Lamela. And we have some Asteras sub news for you. Parra goes, Fernández comes.

Spurs got a corner. They wasted that but got another. Lamela played it short to Dembélé. He drove a rasper at Kosicky, who could only spill the ball into the path of Kane. The striker poked the ball in from all of five yards. The Asteras defence wanted him done for offside. Never in a month.

Too easy for Spurs.

72 mins Rolle is replaced by Barrales. Spurs have a corner. They do nowt with it.

69 mins Lamela will get this headlines but this is just as good from Lloris. The boys in front of him are caught out once again by a clipped ball over the top. This time it is Usero who is on the end of it. He smashes one at the French keeper who pulls of a magnificent reaction save at his near post.

When he can be bothered, he is very good and tonight, when scoring at least, he has been very good. He won the ball for his side high up the field, gave it to Kane and got it back in the box. Quick feet saw him dance around a few defenders but when he shoots the ball rebound off one defenders legs and spins up into the air. Lamela kept his eye on the ball and executed a perfectly-hammered volley past Kosicky.

And another very, very good goal.

64 mins Is it because he wants to distinguish Harry from Big Daddy?

63 mins Can anyone explain why?

Andy Townsend never says 'Kane'. It's always always 'Harry Kane'

61 mins A foul on Townsend wide on the right leads to a Spurs free-kick. He who was fouled takes it but it is a foul effort and Asteras get rid of the ball from their area easily enough.

58 mins Dembélé gets across Rolle and shoulders him to the ground. Asteras drift down the right from the resulting free-kick and then switch play to the left. Just inside the box, Tsokanis puts a dangerous ball across the face of the goal that Vertonghen is forced to hoof to safety. The Greeks are coming right back into it.

56 mins Asteras get a corner after some decent covering from Vertonghen. A bit of defensive panic kicks in before Kane kicks in and kicks the ball out for another one. That is sent to the edge of the box but when Asteras try to put it back in, order has been restored in the Spurs back-line and three players are caught offside.

54 mins As a Peruvian Spurs fan, you can imagine that Ive experienced my fair share of suffering pains José Bolivar. I must say that a very famous (and somewhat proud national moment) that is rabona related came thanks to Andres Vasquez, who played (plays?) in Sweden for IFK Göteborg. He scored this beauty then he fell into obscurity and I never heard the name again. Beter than Lamelas, huh?

51 mins Sankaré takes down Adebayor and somehow manages to avoid a yellow card. The resulting free-kick (about 35 yards out, just left of centre) is aimed, by Lamela, to Fazio but the centre-back is beaten to it by Panteliadis.

49 mins A lovely knock-back in the box by Adebayor lands at the feet of Lamela. He shoots but his effort is blocked and diverted out for Spurs first corner of the second half. Lamela it is who takes it but the Greek side soon rid their box of any danger.

47 mins The best rabona I saw (no video proof, so it never happened, right?) was when I was at school and some friends of mine got jobs stocking shelves in a local supermarket, reminisces Scapegoat. We were playing football in the vegetable aisle with a cabbage, and unfortunately the trick shot in question hit an old lady who was busy feeling all the apples in a bin. The manager thought Id done the shot in question, grabbed me and said Youre fired. I tried to look contrite, said OK and left, but as I wasnt actually an employee, the others kept their jobs until the manager later caught them shoplifting a bunch of whiskey.

46 mins No changes to tell you about just yet.

45 mins And we are back. On the Rabona Wikipedia page, says Chris Mapleston, the Players who have completed the skill in competition section has already been updated with Lamelas details. Deary me. Who are these people doing this so quickly?

Thats your lot for now. One very good goal and one outrageous goal separate the sides. Take these 15 minutes to send in your best rabona examples.

Half-time scores, #UEL Groups A-F ... Don't miss a kick of the second half action:

43 mins Whats a rabona? asks Lionel Faull. Anyone want to enlighten?

41 mins Asteras get one corner. And another. Lloris claims the second one with ease.

40 mins Townsend gets the ball about 30 yards out. He takes one touch, pushes the ball forward and then swings one towards the top right corner. Kosicky spreads his body but the ball misses its intended target by a whisker.

38 mins That rabona though. It was struck so cleanly.

37 mins Panteliadis chops down Townsend as a lumberjack would a tree. Unlike a lumberjack though, the defender gets a yellow card beside his name.

35 mins Meanwhile in Scotland:

Celtic making Astra look good here. Slack, sloppy, poor stuff.

34 mins By the way, just moments before Lamela did his thing, Parra missed Asteras second golden opportunity of the game. In fairness to the striker, Lloris saved well at the near post and the rebound was blocked brilliantly by Davies but he still should have done better.

This. Is. Unreal. Lamela has just rabona-ed one into the goal from the D. Lets just repeat that. Lamela has just rabona-ed one into the goal from the D. One more time? Lamela has just rabona-ed one into the goal from the D. And another? Lamela has just rabona-ed one into the goal from the D. Pochettino didnt even smile.

Lamela's goal for spurs is the ultimate showboat !! WOW!! #THFC

Oh. my. God.

26 mins A free-kick to the Greek side is looped to the back post by Panteliadis. It finds Rick Rubin Zisopoulos but his equally looping header loops its way over the bar. Speaking of loops, do they still make Loop-de-loops? They were great.

23 mins Capoue picks the ball up near the centre circle. He strides forward and plays the ball to Adebayor. The striker lays it back to Kane as Capoue continues his run. Kane finds that run but brave keeping from Kosicky keeps Spurs goal count at one.

21 mins Just saw a replay of that Tsokanis chance. It looked like he heard the keeper coming and pulled out of the chance. Hell need to be a bit braver next time, he said, typing from the comfort of his office without having a big, hairy keeper bearing down on him at speed.

19 mins Spurs counter via Townsend on the right. He cuts inside and passes to Lamela. The ball goes back and then to the right to Davies. Adebayor then tires to muscle his way into the box but the Greeks repel him. Meanwhile, down the other end, Spurs are caught out by another long ball over the top and Tsokanis is this close to beating Lloris to the ball. The keeper was forced to clear the danger on the edge of his box with his head.

17 mins If you saw Kanes goal against Besiktas, this one was very similar only from the other side.

Tottenham had spent the last few minutes playing a bit of keep ball in the Asteras half. Asteras had 10 players behind the ball but no one got out to Kane quick enough. He was serviced the ball by Dembélé a good 25 yards out on the right. He looked up, shifted the ball forward and struck it low and hard and into the far corner of the net. It as a wonderful, wonderful strike from an increasingly impressive player.

Call the doctor because this goal is sick.

10 mins Davies concedes a free-kick for a foul on Mazza then Capoue does one on Parra. Its all a bit scrappy at the moment, with no team really finding their feet and/or rhythm.

8 mins That was a dead good opportunity for Mazza. Asteras may come to regret that later on.

7 mins Spurs get a free-kick, bear the corner flag on the left, after an unfriendly shoulder barge by Lluy on Davies. Davies sends it over but Asteras deal with it. Moments later, a long ball over the top is misjudged by Dembélé and allows Mazza in on goal. He has time and space but at the edge of the area, he loses his cool and rolls a shot wide.

4 mins Lamela picks the ball up in the middle. He cuts inside and beats one player. He tries to set up Kane but his pass is behind the young forward.

3 mins Contrary to the team sheet, Townsend has started on the right and Lamela has started on the left.

2 mins Spurs get an early throw on their left. It lands at the foot of Dembélé. He tried to Hollywood it across the pitch and in doing so he hacks it right out of play. Asteras get their throw and their first taste of the ball. They pass it around, exhibiting few early nerves.

1 mins The referee gives his whistle a short blast and it is off we go. Spurs are playing in their usual white number and doing so in a right to left fashion. Asteras are decked in a kit that has a solid strip of yellow surrounded by a sea of navy. The home side are the one who get us going.

The lads in the studio have some bantz and the players are making their way out on to the pitch. Wont be long now. Excited? No, didnt think so.

Hope for Spurs:

0 - Asteras Tripolis have never won an away match in Europe (lost three, drawn four, including qualifying matches). Sickness.

Its all over in Lille. It was a deary enough affair like watching brown paint dry but Everton will be happy as they leave the stadium with a point in their pocket, a point that sends them back to the top of their group.

So when you read that March 24 was the day that both Ivan Kruzliak and Chris Bosh were born on, the same day that Hickland and Hasselhoff became one and the same day that The Breakfast Club is set, you thought that day could not get any better, right? How wrong you were. Let Simon McMahon explain why. Things that happen on March 24? Its National Tree Planting Day in Uganda, you know, he cheers.

Tonight, you shall be watching this mötley crüe do their respective things. Tottenham, it would seem, are taking the game pretty seriously by returning Adebayor and Townsend to their starting lineup. Joining them is Vertonghen, about whom speculation regarding his future just wont go away, and Kane who, along with Lloris, has been one of Spurs better players in this competition this season. Chadli who had been suffering with an unspecified injury makes the bench but Danny Rose and Kyle Naughton are not so lucky. As for Asteras, the curse of the preamble has struck for Barrales and he too will be watching from the comfort of the bench. Those teams in full then are as follows:

Tottenham: Lloris; Dier, Vertonghen, Fazio, Davies; Dembélé, Capoue; Lamela, Kane Townsend; Adebayor. Subs: Vorm, Chiriches, Lennon, Chadli, Eriksen, Stambouli, Soldado.

The common consensus is that most players/fans would prefer to declare themselves a god, realise that meant sex was only for mortals, study monks and vasectomies and then perform one on themselves before jumping off a two-story balcony, rather than be associated with the Europa League. And somedays its hard to argue against that. In an already pretty crowded schedule, there are far too many games to reach the top, there are far too many teams trying to reach the top and the idea that a Champions League team can be rewarded for their failure in that competition by just swanning in and taking a place in the round of 32 makes the whole thing stink of farce and taste like that cheap and nasty, yellow pack rot-gut they used to sell in Quinnsworth.

And yet, glory is glory is glory is glory is glory is glory.
Should Tottenham progress past the group stages, navigate the round of 32, do one over another in the round of 16, get a decent draw in the quarters, go hard in the semis and reach the final, youd have to be one hella stubborn Spurs supporter/player not to get excited about the thought of winning a European trophy, especially given the Champions-League tasting carrot that is attached to it. Given their form and placing in the league right now ( Mauricio Pochettino wasnt wrong when he called it a tough period) could that route be Tottenhams best chance of traipsing across the biggest stage next seasons? Hmmm, yeah, maybe, but if so, they have already made life hard for themselves.

Their first game in the group C saw them enter an intimidating atmosphere in Belgrade and leave with a point, after some resolute rear-guard action and plenty of profligacy up front. Their second game saw them take on Besiktas, saw them played off the park and once more saw them end with a point, after Demba Ba converted a penalty one minute from time thanks to bone-headed defending from Vlad Chiriches. All of which has left Spurs in third place, two points behind the group leaders and tonights opposition, Asteras Tripoli.

You probably know (the Greece version of) Tripoli as the birth place of former Greek prime minister, Konstantinos Georgakopoulos, and for the fact that it is twinned with Peine, Germany, but, of late, Asteras Tripoli have been the reason for the southern citys fame. It has been quite the rise for the Arcadians. Eleven years ago, they were playing in the fourth flight of the Greek league but it took them just another four to secure the back-to-back titles and take their spot in the Super League. Their first few season up top were shaky and there was a bit of slap and tickle with relegation but the the last three have been steadier and seen them record top six finishes, as well finish as runners-up in the Greek Cup.

To get where they are today, they have beaten Mainz, Maccabi Tel Aviv, Partizan and drawn away to Besiktas, so any one who thinks Spurs are going to have it easy tonight best take their thinking back to the drawing board. While there, they might want to think about the fact that the Greeks are unbeaten in five games. In his pre-match presser, Staikos Vergetis, indicated that his side would rock up at White Hart Lane with defence in mind (and that is what they worked on in the a cold north London last night) but this is a side that is laced with some silky and strong Argentinians, not least their main goal threat, Jerónimo Barrales (who know that he has been mentioned here will surely be dropped to the bench). They wont stay back forever though their back four will be hampered by the loss of Dorin Goian to an ankle injury and they will look to hit and hurt Tottenham on the counter (only Mainz have stopped them from scoring in Europe this season).

This is going to be a tough one for Tottenham.
News of the 11 men that Pochettino thinks can do this is on its its way, as is 90 minutes of football. Woop!

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NYT > Sports
last updated: Thu, 23 Oct 2014 16:57:55 GMT

Judge Has Questions About Agreement on Head-Injury Care
Lawyers involved in a class-action suit brought by former college athletes to reform N.C.A.A. head-injury policies said on Thursday they thought the agreement would be tweaked but ultimately accepted.

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last updated: Thu, 16 Oct 2014 10:52:24 EDT

Freak injury rules out Svindal
A freak injury while playing an impromptu game of football with his teammates could sideline Norwegian skiing great Aksel Lund Svindal for the entire World Cup season.

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Fox Sports Top Stories RSS feed merging with Breaking News
The Fox Sports Top Stories RSS feed is merging with Breaking News. Please use instead.

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last updated: Thu, 23 Oct 2014 13:47:00 GMT

ASADA tells players to back off
ASADA boss Ben McDevitt has lashed out at the AFL Players Association and says he will not be rushed in the case against 34 current and former Essendon players.

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last updated: Thu, 23 Oct 2014 11:52:17 PDT

Urlacher: Cutler an elite QB in salary only
Jay Cutler is the highest-paid quarterback this season and Brian Urlacher says that's the only thing elite about his former teammate.

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Brantley, Gomes named AL Gold Glove finalists -

Brantley, Gomes named AL Gold Glove finalists
CLEVELAND -- Michael Brantley earned a trip to his first All-Star Game this past season and turned in the kind of campaign worthy of consideration for the American League's Most Valuable Player honor. The Indians outfielder is now in the mix for a Rawlings ...
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News and notes
Catching up on some Pirate-related news and such from the past few weeks: Royals and Giants in the World Series: As a baseball fan, the postseason always is fun to watch, no matter how much it hurts to see the Pirates out of it. These past two years have taken that “hurt” to a new […]

Catching up on some Pirate-related news and such from the past few weeks:

Royals and Giants in the World Series:

As a baseball fan, the postseason always is fun to watch, no matter how much it hurts to see the Pirates out of it. These past two years have taken that “hurt” to a new level with the Bucs in the mix but falling short of advancing deep, but the games are almost always compelling and enjoyable to watch anyway. Still, there’s bitterness involved. I mean, Travis Ishikawa with the pennant winning walkoff? REALLY? The baseball gods love to troll Pirate fans, although at least that knocked the hated Cardinals out. (Then again, the Giants are starting to become the “new Cardinals” – the team that just doesn’t seem to die in the postseason.) And while of course everyone is rooting for the Royals – an awesome story – you can’t help but be a little jealous as their Cinderella run carries all the way to the Series.  (That said, I certainly wasn’t jealous of the familiar treatment Madison Bumgarner gave them in Game 1.)

Side note: While it’s easy to be disappointed with the Pirates’ very short postseason “run”, and while it’s fair to be disappointed that they couldn’t win the division, consider that no 90+ win teams made the World Series, and the Nats, Dodgers, A’s, Tigers, and Angels combined to win a total of two playoff games. Get in to the postseason and anything can happen.

Jeff Banister hired as Texas Rangers manager:

The Pirates’ bench coach from the past four seasons is headed to Texas to be a big league manager. “Banny” remarkably spent 29 years in the Pirates organization and was clearly a truly beloved figure – if that wasn’t known before, it’s common knowledge now. He will be missed quite a bit, but as far as I can tell, you won’t be able to find a single person that’s ever known Banister that isn’t happy for him to get such a great opportunity, especially in his home state.

In terms of on-the-field impact, Banister was known to be a key piece of the organization’s bridge between the front office’s analytics team (a new-age unit that has earned a lot of praise in recent years) and the dugout. It will be interesting to see how the Pirates try to replace that. So far the word seems to be that it will be a internal replacement, possibly “major league coach” Dave Jauss.

Pirates will give Russell Martin a qualifying offer:

This shouldn’t really be news, as it should be a plainly obvious decision for the Pirates, but it is good to know that the Pirates will at least take the first step in attempting to retain their catcher. For those not familiar with the situation, the Pirates will offer Martin a one year, $15.3 million contract after the World Series ends. Martin will almost certainly decline that, as he should be able to get roughly $15M/yr for multiple years. If another team signs him after the QO is extended and denied, that team loses its top draft pick (unless it is a top ten pick, then they lose their second pick), and the Pirates would gain a draft pick after the end of the first round.

That’s why it’s a no brainer to give him the offer…they’ll get an extra pick if they lose Martin, it’s a slight deterrent to any other team trying to sign him (so it gives the Pirates a very slight advantage as they compete for him on the open market), and it’s highly unlikely that the offer would be accepted (and it it somehow was, they should be thrilled to get him for one year/$15M). The real question is whether or not Francisco Liriano will get one. We’ll get into that discussion soon – I say he absolutely should, but I’m not so sure the Pirates will agree.

Ticket prices going up:

The Pirates are raising season ticket prices. As a partial STH myself, I scratched my head at the comment about prices on the secondary market constantly being higher than the face value prices (that was RARELY the case in my own experience this season), but all the other stuff the Pirates cite is more than fair. PNC Park has the smallest capacity in baseball, the prices are still among the lowest, the demand is up, and the team is finally competitive. The part about the small capacity and low prices is often overlooked somewhat (even with great attendance, the Pirates’ ticket revenue would still be in the bottom half of the league)…bust still, it is also more than fair to expect some more money to go into the payroll this year after record attendance without much of a payroll bump in 2014.

The new season ticket prices can be found here. Individual game prices haven’t been released yet, but they’ll be slightly higher than the season ticket per-game prices.

Clint Hurdle has hip surgery:

The only good thing about the Pirates getting knocked out quickly was that it enabled Clint to get this taken care of. It was painful for us all to watch him limp out of the dugout in the later part of the season, and he showed great courage and toughness holding off on the surgery until the season ended. He had the procedure on the Monday after the Wild Card game and seems to be doing fine – he even showed up a Pens game on Saturday night.

Arizona Fall League:

Some of the Pirates’ better known prospects are in action in the desert. Tyler Glasnow headlines the list and after a bad first outing he has been impressive since. Catcher Elias Diaz and Josh Bell are also playing and have had some ups and downs. This is a short season so the stats probably aren’t too meaningful, but it’s another chance for some to get a look at some of the best prospects and for them to get some additional experience.

AFL stats can be found here. 

Original article: News and notes

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