Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 14th 2014 Contents A45
Tuesday, January 14, 2014 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
MILAN---AC Milan fired Massimiliano
Allegri and put former assistant coach
Mauro Tassotti temporarily in charge yes-
terday, a day after an embarrassing 4-3
loss at promoted Sassuolo.
Langishing in 11th place---six points above
the relegation zone---Milan announced the move
on its website.
Former Milan players Clarence Seedorf and
Filippo Inzaghi were reportedly the leading can-
didates to replace Allegri on a full-time basis.
The 37-year-old Seedorf is currently playing
for Botafogo in Brazil while the 40-year-old
Inzaghi is coaching Milan s youth squad.
Milan has won only five of 19 matches this
season and Allegri had already announced over
the winter break that he would leave at the end
of the season. But the loss to Sassuolo, which
got four goals from teenage forward Domenico
Berardi, hastened his departure.
The Sassuolo game marked the debut of
recently signed forward Keisuke Honda, and
Milan was hoping that the Japan international
would lead the squad to a second-half surge
the way Mario Balotelli did last season.
But as soon as the match ended, Milan general
manager Barbara Berlusconi said the loss high-
lighted the need for urgent change.
Allegri took over Milan in 2010 and won
Serie A in his first season then finished second
and third the past two years. Still, he never
became a favorite of club owner Silvio Berlus-
The only other trophy Allegri won with Milan
was the 2011 Italian Super Cup.
However, Milan was the only Italian club to
reach the knockout stage of this season s Cham-
pions League, and will face Atletico Madrid
The 53-year-old Tassotti is a long-time Milan
assistant who had a 17-year playing career with
Milan s next match is against Serie B side
Spezia on Wednesday in the Italian Cup. Then
on Sunday, the Rossoneri face fifth-place Hellas
Verona. Both matches are at the San Siro.
There has also been speculation that Milan would like
to sign Italy coach Cesare Prandelli, whose contract with
the national team expires after this year s World Cup.
Allegri s contract was due to expire at the end of this
It s the seventh coaching change in Serie A this season.
The other coaches fired were Fabio Liverani (Genoa),
Rolando Maran (Catania), Delio Rossi (Sampdoria),
Giuseppe Sannino (Chievo Verona), Vladimir Petkovic
(Lazio) and Stefano Pioli (Bologna). (AP)
AC Milan fires Allegri, promotes Tassotti
ZURICH---Kosovo s bid for international recog-
nition was boosted by FIFA yesteday.
Football s world governing body cleared more than
200 member countries to organise friendly matches
against national and club teams from the former
FIFA said its emergency committee chaired by
President Sepp Blatter made the decision after he
met last Friday with football leaders from Kosovo
"The decision ... represents a major boost for foot-
ball development in Kosovo and it once again confirms
the extraordinary power of our sport to bring people
together," Blatter said in a statement issued by FIFA.
However, national and club teams from countries
which made up the former Yugoslavia are currently
excluded from the agreement.
Kosovo has used sport to further its international
claims since declaring independence from Serbia in
2008. It is recognized by around 100 countries but
is not a member of the United Nations.
The Serbian football federation and European foot-
ball authority UEFA had challenged a previous Blat-
ter-led move in May 2012 to grant playing rights to
Kosovo. FIFA said teams from Kosovo "may not dis-
play national symbols (flags, emblems, etc.) or play
national anthems." They can "wear or display kit or
equipment bearing the name Kosovo " and a star
symbol. Teams from Kosovo must also give 21 days
notice of scheduled home matches, and FIFA will
inform the Serbia football federation.
"Any breach of this agreement will be referred to
FIFA and the agreement will automatically come to
an end," the governing body warned.
Kosovo will likely use yesterday s agreement as a
basis to press for membership of UEFA and FIFA,
which would allow it to enter qualifying for major
competitions in men s, women s and youth football.
FIFA statutes currently allow players with Kosovo
family connections to transfer eligibility from their
current national teams.
Switzerland is likely to have several players with
Kosovo links in its World Cup squad this year, includ-
ing Bayern Munich winger Xherdan Shaqiri and
Napoli midfielder Valon Behrami.
FIFA clears Kosovo
to play national
BARCELONA---Barcelona says it has asked a
Madrid court to dismiss a legal case over the
transfer of Neymar.
Barcelona said yesterday that "there are no
illegal actions in the events originally described."
The case pertains to the 57-million euro transfer
of the Brazil striker from Santos to Barcelona last
A club member presented the lawsuit demanding
clarification over where the remaining money
went after Santos received only 17 million euros.
On Friday, the state prosecutor called on the
judge overseeing the case to open criminal pro-
ceedings against club president Sandro Rosell.
Barca demands Neymar
transfer lawsuit be dismissed
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