sumber :-


Bologna in trouble with the law

Posted: 20 Apr 2011 10:36 PM PDT

Thursday, April 21st, 2011 13:24:00

ROME: A peculiar scandal involving disabled parking badges could inadvertently affect the Serie A relegation picture this weekend with Bologna trying not to be distracted when they host fourth-bottom Cesena.

Bologna players, including top striker Marco Di Vaio and Italy reserve goalkeeper Emiliano Viviano, were questioned by prosecutors over allegations some of their cars had disabled badges.

"I cannot say anything," said Viviano, on leaving the State prosecutor's office.

Italian media have become obsessed with the story, with the club saying the disabled badges belonged to a woman who was a personal assistant to certain players and thus used their vehicles.

Cesena, two points above Sampdoria who occupy the last relegation spot with five games left, will hope to catch their preoccupied local rivals off guard even if 12th-placed Bologna are not mathematically safe.

Brescia, second from bottom and four from safety, will be especially hoping Bologna put the affair out of their minds and beat Cesena given they welcome their own neighbours on Saturday in the form of league leaders AC Milan.

Milan are planning to take an hourlong train journey rather than get caught up in Easter road traffic, such is the club's attention to detail as they near a first Scudetto since 2004.

"Unfortunately I don't play but my concentration is total," said Milan chief executive Adriano Galliani, who booked the train.

"Now someone else has to go and score a goal."

Striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic is again suspended after his appeal against a three-game ban for swearing at a linesman was rejected and fellow striker Alexandre Pato is injured.

Robinho and Antonio Cassano are set to lead the strikeforce.

Milan are six points clear of secondplaced Napoli, who travel to eighthplaced Palermo looking to recover from last weekend's 2-1 home defeat by Udinese.

Beleaguered former European Cup finalists Sampdoria travel to long adrift bottom side Bari, who will be relegated if they lose.

Champions Inter Milan, third in the standings, host Lazio who are just one spot below them.

All matches take place on Saturday this weekend because of Easter.

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Vaart a show

Posted: 20 Apr 2011 10:29 PM PDT

...and Spurs' two-goal hero says they could have even won three points

Thursday, April 21st, 2011 13:24:00


GOD SAVE US: Gunners Cesc Fabregas gestures after missing a shot at goal against Spurs this morning

LONDON: Tottenham midfielder Rafael van der Vaart admitted he thought they could have beaten Arsenal despite coming from 3-1 down to secure a draw in a thrilling north London derby at White Hart Lane this morning.

Van der Vaart scored two of the goals for Spurs — first to equalise after Theo Walcott's opener, and then to score his side's third from the penalty spot as Harry Redknapp's men dented Arsenal's title aspirations.

In what was an incredibly open affair, the Holland international praised the role the home crowd played in getting the side back into the game.

"I think it was a great game, the crowd were fantastic," he told Sky Sports.

"We played a great game against one of the best teams in the league, so we can be happy with 3-3."

With both sides looking to secure a win, the game was quite stretched at times, with lots of end-to-end action resulting in a number of chances for both sides, and van der Vaart felt that Spurs could have taken all three points.

"It was an open game and both teams wanted to win, and that's why there was lots of space. We had a few good chances in the second-half, Modric in particular, so we could have won," he said.

Redknapp believes his side have a fight on their hands if they are to finish fourth this season and bring Champions League football to White Hart Lane once again.

He insisted Manchester City are now favourites to achieve that.

"City were favourites at the start of the year, because of the squad and because we finished above them last season and they went out and spent about £150 million (RM742m) to try and get above us," said Redknapp.

"Obviously they are favourites, but I can't ask any more than to have a team that plays like they did tonight."

Redknapp could not fault his players for their efforts after coming from 3-1 down to hold the Gunners.

"It was a fantastic game. It was one of the great games in my opinion," he said.

"To come back and show the character we showed from 3-1 down to get back into the game and really we could have gone on and won it. We showed fantastic character, it was an amazing performance from the players.

"Arsenal in the first-half were top class. They had us at full stretch and it was hard to live with them. We went 3-1 down, came back to 3-2 just before halftime and I thought second-half, the best chances were all going our way. Obviously a penalty and then we just couldn't get the winner but it was a great performance."

Redknapp also insisted that Spurs still had plenty to play for, despite now lying two points behind City with six games left to play, and the two teams scheduled to meet on May 10 at Eastlands.

"It was a great game and you can't ask for any more. Both teams wanted to win, needed to win, the season's still going and there is still all to play for.

"I'm so pleased with the character we showed. There is a spirit in this football club now that we never give in. We have come back from losing positions so many times and you need players with real character to do that."

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