Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 26th 2014 Contents A73
Saturday, July 26, 2014 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
ZURICH---FIFA fined and repri-
manded the Argentine football
association yesterday because its
national team players were pictured
with a political banner before a
World Cup warm-up match in June.
FIFA imposed a fine of 30,000
Swiss francs ($33,000) --- the second
financial penalty this month for the
World Cup finalists.
Several players stood behind the
slogan "Las Malvinas son Argenti-
nas" (The Falklands are Argentine)
on the field at a June 7 friendly
against Slovenia in Buenos Aires.
Argentina and Britain went to war
in 1982 over the Falkland Islands,
called the Malvinas in Spanish. The
islands have been a British territory
since 1833. FIFA rules prohibit polit-
ical statements at matches it con-
At the World Cup, FIFA also
ordered a 300,000 Swiss francs
($340,000) fine for failure to bring
Argentina players to pre-match news
conferences. Still, FIFA is set to pay
the Argentine federation $25 million
in World Cup prize money. (AP)
Didier Drogba rejoins Chelsea
on season-long deal
LONDON---Didier Drogba rejoined
Chelsea yestertday, reuniting one of
football s most theatrical characters
with flamboyant manager Jose
Mourinho. The 36-year-old Ivory
Coast international, who was a free
agent after spells with Shanghai
Shenhua and Galatasaray, signed
a season-long deal with the Pre-
mier League club.
"It was an easy decision. I
couldn t turn down the opportu-
nity to work with Jose again,"
Drogba said. "Everyone knows the
special relationship I have with
this club and it has always felt like
home to me.
"My desire to win is still the
same and I look forward to the
opportunity to help this team. I
am excited for this next chapter
of my career."
With the last kick in his last
game for Chelsea in May 2012,
Drogba won the Champions
League title for Chelsea, scoring
the decisive penalty in the
shootout against Bayern Munich.
During eight years at Chelsea,
Drogba also won three Premier
League titles, four FA Cups and
two League Cups after being
signed by Mourinho in 2004 from
Now Mourinho, who was away
from Chelsea between 2007 and
2013, is reshaping the team after
failing to win a trophy in his first
season back at Stamford Bridge.
Drogba is the proven scorer Mour-
inho desperately craved last season,
with 157 goals in 341 appearances.
"He s coming because he s one
of the best strikers in Europe,"
Mourinho said. "I know his per-
sonality very well and I know if
he comes back he s not protected
by history or what he s done for
this club previously. He is coming
with the mentality to make more
Drogba was Chelsea s man for
the big occasions, contributing
nine goals in nine finals, but he is
also one of the game s most
inflammatory players. He has infu-
riated rivals fans with what they
view as a habit of diving, and
enraged referees with his aggressive
foul-mouthed conduct, earning
several bans from UEFA.
CAS: Luis Suarez ruling
likely in August
GENEVA---The Court of Arbitra-
tion for Sport could rule on Luis
Suarez s appeal against his biting
ban before the Spanish league sea-
son starts next month. CAS said
yesterday that Suarez, the Uruguay
football federation and Barcelona
have filed a request for a fast-track
appeal against FIFA s ban for nine
competitive international matches
and four months from all football.
"It is likely that a final award
will be rendered well before the
end of August," the court said in
a statement to The Associated
The Spanish league season
begins the weekend of Aug. 23-
24, when Barcelona hosts Elche.
"All parties have agreed on an
expedited procedure in this case,"
FIFA said Friday in a statement.
Still, no hearing dates have yet
been agreed to, the court said.
Arbitrators have also yet to be
appointed to judge the case. In
typical appeals to CAS, both sides
and the court each choose one
lawyer on the three-member
FIFA s sanctions imposed on
Suarez also included a fine of
100,000 Swiss francs ($112,000)
for biting the shoulder of Italy
defender Giorgio Chiellini in a
group match at the World Cup.
Uruguay beat Italy 1-0 with a
goal scored one minute after
Suarez s bite was missed by the
match officials. The South Amer-
icans advanced to the second
round, but without their star strik-
er they were easily beaten by
Colombia. FIFA s disciplinary panel
imposed the ban on June 26. (AP)
FIFA rejects calls to strip
Russia of World Cup
GENEVA---FIFA has rejected calls
to move the 2018 World Cup from
Russia, saying the tournament
"can achieve positive change."
Russia s alleged involvement in
shooting down a Malaysia Airlines
plane over Ukraine last week
prompted calls from some law-
makers in Germany to review the
country s hosting rights.
Yesterday, political pressure on
Russia increased when the Euro-
pean Union moved to freeze assets
and restrict travel for more indi-
viduals and businesses.
FIFA issued a statement saying
it "deplores any form of violence"
and would support only peaceful,
democratic debate about the World
"History has shown so far that
boycotting sport events or a policy
of isolation or confrontation are
not the most effective ways to
solve problems," FIFA said, adding
that global attention on the World
Cup "can be a powerful catalyst
for constructive dialogue between
people and governments."
The conflict between Ukraine
and pro-Russia separatist rebels
escalated days after the World Cup
ended in Brazil.
On July 13 in Rio de Janeiro,
Russian President Vladimir Putin
attended a World Cup hosting
handover ceremony with Brazilian
counterpart Dilma Rousseff. Both
then sat next to FIFA President
Sepp Blatter to watch the final at
the Maracana Stadium, won by
FIFA, which has Russian sports
minister Vitaly Mutko on its exec-
utive committee, said a World Cup
in the country "can be a force for
"FIFA believes this will be the
case for the 2018 FIFA World Cup
in Russia," the governing body said.
Blatter already rejected calls to
strip Russia of the tournament
after it annexed the Crimea this
"The World Cup has been given
and voted to Russia and we are
going forward with our work,"
Blatter said in March.
In a separate statement Friday,
Mutko said a United States-led
boycott of the 1980 Moscow
Olympics had been a mistake.
"So there s no sense in reacting
to politicians trying to make names
for themselves," Mutko was quoted
saying by Russian news agency R-
Sport. "We re preparing in a calm
way, building facilities, getting
ready for the World Cup."
Russia has announced a $20 bil-
lion budget for building and ren-
ovating 12 stadiums, and other
construction projects, for the first
World Cup to be held in eastern
Restricting Russian financial
institutions access to European
capital markets was suggested to
a meeting of EU ambassadors in
Brussels on Friday. The 28-nation
bloc is scheduled to further discuss
the subject on Tuesday.
"FIFA has stated many times that
sport should be outside politics,"
Mutko said. "Hosting an event like
this, we re doing it for athletes from
all over the world, for footballers,
for the fans." (AP)
FIFA fines Argentina for protest banner
In this file photo taken on July 13, 2014, FIFA President Sepp Blatter, left, and Russian President Vladimir Putin
hold a soccer ball during the official ceremony of handover to Russia as the 2018 World Cup hosts. AP PHOTOS
Argentine supporters hold a poster of Argentina's Lionel Messi made to resemble the Christ the Redeemer statue
before the World Cup semifinal soccer match between the Netherlands and Argentina at the Itaquerao Stadium in
Sao Paulo Brazil, on July 9, 2014.
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