Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 19th 2013 Contents A48
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Monday, August 19, 2013
enjoyed a euphoric Chelsea
homecoming yesterday, and
Tottenham put aside the turmoil
surrounding Gareth Bale s
future by also making a victo-
rious start to the Premier
Chelsea ripped apart Hull
inside 25 minutes at Stamford
Bridge, with the goals from Oscar
and Frank Lampard securing a
2-0 victory at Stamford Bridge.
While Lampard had earlier
missed a penalty, Roberto Sol-
dado had no such trouble from
the spot for Tottenham to score
on debut and clinch a 1-0 victory
over Crystal Palace.
Tottenham eked out the win
without the team s most potent
attacking threat. Bale is injured
---and being pursued by Real
Sunday s pair of results com-
pleted a miserable weekend for
the league newcomers, with
Cardiff also failing to score in a
2-0 loss at West Ham on Sat-
Manchester United s Premier
League defense began on Satur-
day with a 4-1 victory at Swansea
in David Moyes first match in
charge since replacing Alex Fer-
Manchester City is also under
new management, and last sea-
son s runner-up ushers in the
Manuel Pellegrini era against
Newcastle on Monday night. The
Chilean will be hoping his debut
goes as smoothly as Moyes and
Mourinho enjoyed this weekend.
Mourinho was welcomed onto
the pitch by cheers from the
Chelsea fans delighted to see the
end of Rafa Benitez s interim
reign. They were denied an early
goal to celebrate, with Frank
Lampard s spot kick saved after
Oscar, though, found the target
in the 13th, slotting the ball under
goalkeeper Allan McGregor after
Belgium duo Kevin De Bruyne
and Eden Hazard combined.
Lampard made amends for his
penalty miss with a superbly
taken free kick that dipped and
swerved over McGregor into the
net in the 25th.
Branislav Ivanovic appeared to
have headed in a third on the
stroke of halftime, but the newly
introduced goal-line technology
confirmed that the ball failed to
cross the line.
Despite Hull posing more of a
threat in the second half, Chelsea
did the hard work before the
break and can now goes into the
next game of the season against
Aston Villa on Wednesday as a
club united once again.
Now Mourinho is looking to
add to the Premier League titles
he won during his 2004-07 spell
at Chelsea. The club won the
championship in his absence, as
well as the Champions League,
FA Cup and Europa League
despite going through seven dif-
Across London, south of the
River Thames, Selhurst Park
hosted Premier League football
for the first time since 2005. And
Palace largely frustrated Totten-
ham and its expensively strength-
But Soldado, a $40 million
signing from Valencia, delivered
from the penalty spot on his first
outing in English football.
The striker s goal came five
minutes into the second half after
Palace defender Dean Moxey
handled a cross from Aaron
Lennon as he slid in to block the
ball going into the penalty area.
"That was a completely and
unbelievably dubious handball,"
Palace manager Ian Holloway
said. "Was it deliberate? I don t
think he had a chance."
Tottenham manager Andre
Villas-Boas sidestepped questions
on Bale s future, but said the foot
injury that kept him out of Sun-
day s game will sideline him for
another two matches.
Tottenham puts aside
Gareth Bale's absence
PARIS---Monaco cruised to a
4-1 victory over 10-man
Montpellier in the French
league yesterday following a
hat trick from Emmanuel Riv-
Radamel Falcao gave Monaco
a deserved lead from the penal-
ty spot in the 18th minute after
Lucas Ocampos was fouled by
Montpellier, which drew
against defending champion
Paris Saint-Germain last week,
leveled six minutes later when
Victor Montano beat Monaco
defender Ricardo Carvalho to
head in Benjamin Stambouli s
Monaco restored its lead just
before halftime when Riviere
won the ball off Daniel Congre
and chipped the ball over goal-
keeper Laurent Pionnier.
Riviere doubled his tally in
the 57th, and matters got even
worse for Montpellier when
Congre was sent off six min-
utes later following a foul on Yannick Ferreira Carrasco.
Riviere completed his hat trick nine minutes from time,
heading into an empty net after
Pionnier had parried Ferreira
Carrasco s deflected shot.
Monaco, which spent heavily
in the offseason after winning
promotion, has won both its
Fellow promoted side Nantes
lost 2-1 at Lorient.
Nantes took the lead in the
17th minute in somewhat for-
tunate circumstances, with
Olivier Veigneau s cross from
35 meters out ending up in the
far corner of the net.
Lorient leveled five minutes
from halftime when Maxime
Baca sent a ball through to an
unmarked Vincent Aboubakar,
who calmly slotted it past goal-
keeper Remy Riou.
Jeremie Aliadiere scored the
winner with a stunning free
kick that Riou got a hand to
but couldn t prevent going into
the top left corner.
Nantes was prevented from
scoring a stoppage-time equal-
izer by Lamine Kone last-ditch
clearance off the line.
Monaco cruises past Montpellier in France
Monaco's Falcao of Colombia, left, challenges for the ball with
Montpellier's Daniel Congre of France during their French League
One soccer match, yesterday, in Monaco stadium. AP PHOTO
SAO PAULO---Fifa Secretary General
Jerome Valcke will begin an inspection visit
to Brazil today amid a series of concerns
about the country s readiness for the 2014
Valcke will visit three host cities less than
a week after Brazil s sports minister said the
pace of construction needs to be increased
on five of the six stadiums that have to be
completed by December.
The visit also comes just days after the
government said it is concerned with price
hikes of hotels listed on Fifa s Web site,
which could prompt an investigation into
the Fifa-appointed agency in charge of
There are also doubts about whether the
upgrades needed at the country s airports
will be ready in time for the event that kicks
off in less than 10 months.
Valcke is making his first visit to Brazil
since the end of the Confederations Cup,
the tournament that serves as a warm-up
to the World Cup. He will check preparations
in three of the 12 host cities---Sao Paulo,
Curitiba and Manaus. The cities are among
the six that have to finish their stadiums by
the December deadline established by Fifa.
The other six venues were completed, despite
many delays, just in time for the Confed-
Fifa has already made it clear that it won t
tolerate the same problems faced during the
Confederations Cup. Only four stadiums
were completed by the original deadline.
Valcke s first stop is in Sao Paulo, host of
the World Cup s opening match on June 12.
There had been concerns about whether the
stadium was going to be ready by December,
but constructors picked up the pace in recent
months and the Brazilian government said
it s not worried anymore.
That is not the case for the other five ven-
ues, and the delays prompted Sports Minister
Aldo Rebelo to say last week that the host
cities were "facing a tight deadline" and that
there was a need "to improve the pace in
most of the stadiums" to make sure they
can be completed this year.
Four of the stadiums were less than 80
per cent completed, including in Curitiba
and Manaus, the other two cities visited by
Valcke this week. The secretary general s
trip will end after he attends a board meeting
of the local World Cup organising committee
on Thursday in Rio de Janeiro.
Fifa and the government want to get the
stadiums ready this year so local organizers
can host the necessary test events before
the World Cup begins. Fifa usually wants at
least three test events at each venue, but
that wasn t possible in most of the Con-
federations Cup stadiums because of con-
And it s not only the stadiums that could
give Valcke reason for concern.
Brazil is facing a last-minute scramble to
get its notoriously crowded and shabby air-
ports into shape for the World Cup, with
experts saying there is no room for error.
Fifa to visit
Tottenham Hotspur's Roberto Soldado, centre, celebrates his penalty
goal against Crystal Palace with teammates during their English
Premier League soccer match at Selhurst Park, London, yesterday.
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