Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : October 23rd 2013 Contents MILAN---Leo Messi scored a first-half
equaliser to earn Barcelona a 1-1 draw
against AC Milan in Group H of the Cham-
pions League yesterday.
Robinho gave Milan a deserved lead after
only nine minutes at a packed San Siro,
shortly after Sulley Muntari's strike had
been ruled out for offside.
The Brazilian forward linked up impres-
sively with compatriot Kaka, who showed
flashes of his old form after a disappointing
few seasons at Real Madrid, and steered the
ball home from close range.
Messi leveled in the 23rd from a similar
range after being left in space by Milan's
rearguard, taking advantage of a mistake by
Milan defender Kevin Constant.
Barcelona remains atop of Group H after
two wins and a draw. Milan is second, two
In the other group match, Celtic picked
up its first points with a 2-1 victory over
It was the seventh time in three seasons
the two teams had met in the Champions
League, with Milan's 2-0 home win in last
year's quarterfinals its best result. Barcelona
humiliated the Italian side 4-0 in the return
leg.Messi, who had scored five times against
Milan, started for Barcelona after recovering
from a minor injury.
Milan was missing Stephan El Shaarawy
and Giampaolo Pazzini up front, both out
injured. Mario Balotelli had a thigh problem
and was only fit for a place on the bench
so Kaka---who had only just returned from
injury---started alongside Robinho and Valter
Birsa, with Alessandro Matri dropped to the
Kaka, who previously played for
Barcelona's bitter rival Real Madrid, had an
impressive performance and went off to a
standing ovation when he was substituted
in the 71st minute.
Milan started the brighter, forcing
Barcelona to defend deep at the outset and
the Italian side had the ball in the back of
the net in the seventh minute. Robinho
carved out some space for himself on the
edge of the area and threaded the ball
through to Muntari, who drilled it home,
but it was ruled out for offside.
There was no conjecture two minutes
later. Robinho took advantage of a mixup
between Gerard Pique and Javier Mascherano
just inside the Barcelona half and charged
downfield before playing a swift one-two
with Kaka and slotting it past an onrushing
Victor Valdes and into an empty net.
Barcelona had rarely threatened in the
opening stages and its best chance came in
the 19th minute when Messi curled a free
kick the wrong side of the near post from
the right of the penalty area.
The Spanish side went closer a minute
later when Messi sent a low ball across the
face of goal which Milan goalkeeper Marco
Amelia did well to smother.
Barcelona leveled shortly afterward as
Milan lost the ball in midfield and Andres
Iniesta picked out an unmarked Messi, who
cut inside and evaded Constant to squeeze
a shot into the bottom right corner.
Milan almost restored its lead four minutes
later but Philippe Mexes headed a corner
just the wrong side of the right hand post.
The frantic pace of the opening half hour
calmed down somewhat but Barcelona nev-
ertheless had chances to take the lead before
halftime as first Neymar's speculative long-
range shot flew past the right upright before
Amelia got down well to block an Alexis
Neymar had another good opportunity
on the stroke of halftime as Cristian Zapata's
header came out to the unmarked Brazilian
on the left side of the area but he volleyed
just past the right upright.
Balotelli was brought on for Robinho
shortly after the hour mark, much to the
crowd's delight, and his team went close to
taking the lead moments later when Mon-
tolivo spun on the ball in midfield and picked
out Constant, who drove a long-range effort
past the right post.
Schalke 0, Chelsea 3
Steaua Bucuresti 1, Basel 1
Arsenal 1, Borussia Dortmund 2
Marseille 1, SSC Napoli 2
Austria Wien 0, Atletico Madrid 3
FC Porto 0, Zenit Petersburg 1
AC Milan 1, Barcelona 1
Celtic 2, Ajax 1
Wednesday, October 23, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
Barcelona's Lionel Messi scores a goal next to AC Milan's Riccardo Montolivo and Kevin
Constant, right, during a Champions League, Group H, football match between AC Milan
and Barcelona at the San Siro stadium, in Milan, Italy, yesterday. The match ended tied 1-1.
Messi earns Barca
a draw at AC Milan
MADRID---Cristiano Ronaldo says the
best medicine for ailing teammate Gareth
Bale is to leave him alone.
Ronaldo says "Gareth Bale is doing well.
It's better to leave him alone and do pressure
on other players."
Bale has had two muscle injuries since
his record transfer, limiting his playing time
and leading to speculation about whether
he had a back hernia that he and the club
Ronaldo says that "people make a lot
pressure around him because of how much
he cost coming from Tottenham, but I think
it's not good for him."
Ronaldo praised Bale's desire "to learn"
and said he was sure Bale would "do well
for the club."
Bale returned to play 15 minutes on Sat-
urday. He is expected to play against Juventus
Ronaldo: Leave ailing Bale alone
TORONTO---World Cup host Brazil will
play Chile in a friendly at Toronto s Rogers
Centre on November 19.
The contest will be played on real grass
at the covered ballpark that hosts Major
League Baseball's Blue Jays. It will be Brazil's
first game in Canada in almost 20 years
and the first in Toronto. The five-time
World Cup winners last played Canada
away in June 1994 in Edmonton, settling
for a 1-1 draw. Brazil went on to win the
World Cup that year in the US.
Brazil, Chile friendly set for Toronto
BARCELONA---Barcelona says midfielder Andres
Iniesta will sign a new five-year contract.
Barcelona club vice president Josep Bartomeu
tells BTV television "the negotiations are underway
and both sides want to sign. Iniesta's new contract
will be the maximum allowed of five years."
This is the 29-year-old Iniesta's 12th season
since debuting with Barcelona's first team. His
current contract expires in the summer of 2015.
The Spain international has helped Barcelona
win three Champions Leagues.
Iniesta to sign new
NYON---UEFA has punished Cypriot club
APOEL Nicosia and Croatian club HNK Rijeka
for racist behaviour by fans at Europa League
UEFA says a section of APOEL's stadium will
be closed when it hosts Bordeaux on November
7. APOEL was also fined 45,000 euros ($61,500)
for a range of charges including offensive banners,
throwing fireworks and late kickoffs for both halves
of its 3-0 loss to Eintracht Frankfurt on October
3. UEFA says Rijeka's stadium will be partially
closed when it hosts Lyon on November 7.
Rijeka was also charged over fans' offensive
banners at a 1-1 draw against Real Betis on October
3. The club was fined 8,000 euros ($11,000).
UEFA agreed on new rules in May to ensure
faster prosecutions and tougher sanctions for dis-
crimination inside stadiums.
Two Europa League
for racist abuse
ISTANBUL---Turkish champion Galatasaray has
been awarded a 3-0 win after rival Besiktas fans
invaded the pitch and forced a league match to
The Turkish Football Federation says its executive
board took a majority decision to give Galatasaray
victory by default.
Galatasaray led 2-1 in stoppage time during the
Istanbul derby match on September 22 when trou-
ble flared. Besiktas fans invaded the Ataturk
Olympic Stadium field and clashed with police
before play was stopped.
Besiktas was ordered to play four league matches
in an empty stadium.
Galatasaray gets win for
Besiktas fans' violence
ZURICH---Fifa has imposed worldwide bans on
three more El Salvador national team players in
a match-fixing case, taking the total to 19.
FIifa says the players, who it did not identify,
were originally banned for five years, one year
and six months, respectively, by the El Salvador
football association this month.
Fifa announced 16 global sanctions, including
14 lifetime bans, last week.
The case involves international matches, includ-
ing El Salvador's 5-0 loss to Mexico at the 2011
Gold Cup and a 2-1 loss in a friendly against the
United States in 2010. Under-20 national team
matches were also involved.
El Salvador authorities shut down the senior
national team during their investigation.
Fifa bans three more
El Salvador players
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