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The Guardian (U.K.) 

Benfica v Juventus: Europa League semi-final live! | John Ashdown

Sevilla v Valencia: follow the latest from the other semi And feel free to email john.ashdown@theguardian.com 7.13pm BST Benfica (4-3-3 ish): Artur, Maxi Pereira, Luisão, Garay, Siqueira; Markovic, Pérez, André Gomes; Rodrigo, Oscar Cardozo, Sulejmani. Subs: Oblak, Jardel, André Almeida, Rúben Amorim, Djuricic, Cavaleiro, Lima. Juventus (3-1-4-2 ish): Buffon; Cáceres, Bonucci, Chielli

Luis Suárez: Premier League charge has even surprised Liverpool players

Striker says squad cannot compete against big spenders 'The truth is we are surprised at how well we're playing'Luis Suárez admits Liverpool's title charge this season has come as a complete surprise to the squad, who he suggests is weaker on paper than the Premier League's big spenders.The Liverpool striker has been in scintilating form this season with his side now favourites to win the l

'The Chosen One' David Moyes banner is removed by Manchester United

Flag at Stretford End replaced by Sir Bobby Charlton tribute Owners undecided what to do with controversial bannerThe David Moyes era at Manchester United may have ended officially on Tuesday but now the controversial "The Chosen One" banner has finally been removed from Old Trafford.Originally placed at the Stretford End at the start of the season as a show of support for the man who repla

Bernie Ecclestone launches defence against bribery charges

Formula One chief claims $44m of payments were result of banker threatening to supply false information to tax officialsFormula One boss Bernie Ecclestone has launched his defence against charges of bribing a public official in the first of at least 26 days of hearings at a Munich court.Ecclestone has denied the bribery charges, claiming he was the victim of a blackmail scam. Continue readi

Stuart Lancaster tells Steffon Armitage: 'England door is not closed'

Coach held talks with Toulon flanker over international chances Brother Delon could also force his way into reckoningThe Toulon flanker Steffon Armitage has been handed hope of an international recall by Stuart Lancaster after the England head coach held talks with the Toulon flanker and brother Delon.The 28-year-old has been preparing for the French side's Heineken Cup semi-final with Muns

Team Sky put Peter Kennaugh on steep learning curve in Giro d'Italia

Bradley Wiggins absent to prepare for Tour de France Ben Swift joins Kennaugh in Sky's Giro teamTeam Sky's squad for the Giro d'Italia will include the British riders Peter Kennaugh and Ben Swift and the multitalented Norwegian Edvald Boasson Hagen, with the Tour de France winners Sir Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome keeping their powder dry for July. With the race starting with three days in

No timeframe set for Tiger Woods' return after surgery

World No1 recovering from pinched nerve in his back 'This is about next 10 or 15 years, not next 10 weeks'World No1 Tiger Woods is taking a long-term view of his return to action and is thinking about "the next 10 or 15 years, not the next 10 weeks", according to his agent.The 14-time major winner missed this month's Masters for the first time in 20 years after undergoing surgery to correct

Northampton ready for Harlequins and battle to reach Amlin Cup final

'We will give this game everything' says Jim Mallinder Winners to meet Wasps or Bath in all-English finalJim Mallinder is relishing a fierce battle for domestic and European honours at the business end of another demanding season, beginning with Northamption's Amlin Cup home semi-final against Premiership rivals Harlequins on Friday.Both clubs have won European rugby's second-tier competiti

Ali Carter loses cool but stages revival in world championship second round

Twice losing finalist recovers to 5-3 down against Mark Selby Carter left swiping his cue through the air in frustrationAli Carter rallied to give himself a fighting chance in his world championship second-round match with Mark Selby at the Crucible in Sheffield.The two-times losing finalist was in all sorts of trouble at 5-1 down against an opponent playing close to his best. A gritty 44 i

Frankie Dettori in form for return of Treve in Prix Ganay at Longchamp

Jockey seen at his best on two all-the-way winners Rider celebrates double ahead of weekend's big-race rideAt the age of 43 and despite a shortage of opportunities, Frankie Dettori is still riding doubles and thrilling crowds. By reputation, the Italian jockey is not supposed to be interested in midweek cards at provincial tracks but he seized control of consecutive races here and had the mem

Horse racing tips: Friday 25 April

Western Hymn at Sandown is the best bet of the dayChepstow5.00 Ned Stark 5.30 On The Record 6.00 Time To Think 6.35 Billy Dutton 7.10 Awesome Bella 7.40 The Last Bridge 8.10 Sergeant Thunder Continue reading...

Super Bowl champion Seahawks face Packers in 2014 NFL season opener

New NFL schedule sees Green Bay travel to Seattle for repeat of 2012 season's "Fail Mary" game Mike McCarthy promises there won't be any bad memories plaguing his Green Bay Packers when they open the NFL season on September 4 at Super Bowl champion Seattle.The last time Green Bay visited CenturyLink Field was in Week 3 of the 2012 season, a 14-12 Seahawks victory clinched on what now is of

Can Steffon Armitage find his way into Stuart Lancaster's World Cup plans? | Robert Kitson

Having established that Steffon and Delon Armitage remain keen to pull on an England jersey again, there is nothing to lose by putting both on standby for the New Zealand tourThe flutter of excitement surrounding Stuart Lancaster's decision to fly to Toulon on his first day back from holiday this week to talk to Steffon and Delon Armitage appears to have been premature. Sources within the Rugby

Sport picture of the day: because he's Werth it

A very fast shutter speed was needed to capture the water cascading over Jayson Werth, almost as fast as the reactions needed by the photographer to avoid getting soaked himself Continue reading...

Blackhawks, Stars and Blue Jackets win to tie NHL playoffs series

*Chicago beat St Louis in overtime to tie series 2-2*Dallas overcome top-seeded Anaheim*Columbus defeat PittsburghColumbus, Chicago and Dallas all capitalized on home-ice advantage to win series-squaring games in the NHL playoffs on Wednesday.Both Columbus and Chicago had 4-3 overtime wins over Pittsburgh and St. Louis respectively, while Dallas defeated top-seeded Anaheim 4-2, with al

Heat and Trail Blazers take 2-0 NBA playoffs series leads

*Miami beat Charlotte 101-97*Portland defeat Houston 113-92*Dallas win in San Antonio to square seriesLeBron James was again to the fore as Miami beat Charlotte on Wednesday to take a 2-0 lead in their NBA first-round playoff series, while Portland also went up 2-0 with a win at Houston and Dallas squared its series against state rival San Antonio.James scored 32 points and added eight

Tar for the course: Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda busted for using foreign substance

*New York Yankees hurler ejected for using pine tar*Happy 100th birthday Wrigley Field*Albert Pujols' power returns*Baseball is a mass of mediocrity heading into MayIts one of the most amusing sights in baseball: umpires converging on a pitchers' mound and searching for a foreign substance on a pitchers body or equipment. Continue reading...

Heineken Cup torn between a rock and an empty place for semi-final crowds | Paul Rees

Is it better for Saracens and Clermont to play their Heineken Cup semi-final at a half empty Twickenham or at smaller stadiums?Saracens face Clermont Auvergne at Twickenham on Saturday in the Heineken Cup semi-final, their biggest match of the season so far. They attracted more than 83,000 spectators for their Premiership encounter with Harlequins last month, but fewer than one-third of that nu

Talking Horses: today's best bets and all the latest racing news

Treve confirmed on course to clash with Cirrus Des Aigles at Longchamp on Sunday Continue reading...

NRL: what to look for in round eight

A dental franchise mob; an Anzac double header; rugby union's dastardly plot; and sad Sea Eagles fansLot to like. Dragons and Roosters on Anzac Day, Raiders and Manly Sunday at Brookvale, Cowboys and Eels playing hot potato at 1300 Smiles (a dental franchise mob, with naming rights over a footy ground in Townsville, clearly the beginning of The End of Times as foreshadowed in the Bible) and t

AFL: what to look out for in round six

Bombers v Pies; a trip to New Zealand; the wit of Drew Petrie; Richmond's 50-foot ramp; and Port can't beat the Cats, can they?With the arrival of the Marley Williams verdict this week we all silently promised ourselves not to cave into outrage and talkback radio vitriol, but then Collingwood just went and did it again, didnt they? We see game-time as part of his rehabilitation, said Pies coa

Michael Phelps announces competitive swimming return - video

The most decorated Olympian in history, Michael Phelps, has announced his return to competitive swimming after his retirement following the 2012 London Games. Speculation is mounting that Phelps is aiming to compete at the 2016 Rio Games, as he prepares to compete at the Arena Grand Prix at Mesa, Arizona Continue reading...

Is Perth really a sports graveyard?

The Waca is crumbling and high-class venues lacking but WA's capital can exploit its links with south-east AsiaI was in the middle of a long drive to Perths outer suburbs when I was snapped out of my reverie by sudden excitement emanating from the radio. The broadcasters were gushing, their enthusiasm striking. _World Series Darts is coming to Perth_. Woo hoo, Australian darts champion Simon

Manchester United set sights on Paris Saint-Germain's Edinson Cavani

Managerial turmoil fails to deter club over transfer targets United confident of landing Shaw and still want FábregasManchester United intend to plough ahead with their transfer business during the potentially long process of waiting for a new manager to start almost three months in Louis van Gaal's case and their extensive inquiries include exploring the possibility of whether Paris Saint-Ger

Sydney Swans' Lance Franklin says car crash was 'just an accident'

*Player fined by police after colliding with four parked cars*Breath test returned a negative resultAFL superstar Lance Franklin said a car crash in which he which damaged five cars was "just an accident" and that he was relieved no one was hurt.Sydney Swans' $10m recruit, who has been fined $405 for negligent driving after the incident in Sydney's eastern suburbs on Wednesday night, was

The forgotten story of ... Advance Australia Fair and the Socceroos

Australia's football team worked with Gough Whitlam in the campaign to recognise the country's national anthemOn the fringe of the Western Sydney Parklands, about an hours drive south-west of FFA Headquarters, is a private museum dedicated to Australian football. The setting is appropriate. In the 15 square kilometre stretch that separates Cabramatta from Cecil Park and Bonnyrigg from Bossley

Peter Moores bows out as Lancashire coach with Warwickshire draw

Lancashire 247 & 196; Warwickshire 324 & 95-5 Match drawnPerhaps appropriately, given the split of opinion provoked by his reappointment as the England coach, the manner of Peter Moores's departure from Lancashire could be viewed in one of two very different ways.For a Moores knocker, it would be easy to mock the spectacle of his players scurrying for the pavilion when Warwickshire were str

Sport picture of the day: The power of Sharapova

A simple yet effective photograph from the Porsche Grand Prix in Stuttgart. The photographer's use of depth of field focuses your attention on Maria Sharapova so you can almost feel the powerful swish of her racket and hear her ear-splitting grunt. The defending champion needed her power and stamina to edge past Lucie Safarova in a gruelling contest which went to three tie breaks and lasted three

Lizzie Armitstead finishes a stunning second in Flèche Wallonne

Armitstead's best performance in a one-day Classic Yorkshirewoman retains run of form in women's World CupLizzie Armitstead's stunning run of form in the UCI women's World Cup this spring continued with a second place in Flèche Wallonne on Wednesday behind France's former junior world champion Pauline Ferrand-Prevot. This was Armitstead's best performance in a one-day Classic, which favours pu

Yorkshire's Andrew Gale could drop himself despite win over Northants

Yorkshire 459-9 dec; Northamptonshire 94 & 245 Yorkshire win by an innings and 120 runsThe Yorkshire captain, Andrew Gale, responded to his side's maiden County Championship victory in their second outing of the season by contemplating dropping himself for their third.After witnessing his bowlers wrap up a comfortable win against newly promoted Northamptonshire in less than two hours of the

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