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Sports Shorts: Drogba set for Chelsea return this season?

Last updated on: July 21, 2014 14:07 IST

Sports Shorts: Drogba set for Chelsea return this season?

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If reports in the French media are to be believed, Didier Drogba’s return to Chelsea on a one-year-contract could be confirmed this week.

- Mourinho believes Drogba will return to 'Chelsea family' someday 

Drogba is currently a free agent after his 18-month contract at Galatasaray ended at the conclusion of the Turkish Super Lig season.

Jose Mourinho’s strong bond with Drogba might be the prime reason behind the move.

According to L’Equipe, the 36-year-old Drogba, who spent eight seasons at StamfordBridge before his move to Galatasaray, is ready for a second spell, with the sale of Demba Ba to Besiktas last week for £4.7m.

Drogba won three Premier League titles, four FA Cups and the Champions League with Chelsea, scoring 157 goals.

- NEXT: Bolt to run at Copacabana, Gatlin race unlikely


Image: Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho (left) shares a joke with Didier Drogba
Photographs: Stu Forster/Getty Images

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Bolt to run at Copacabana, Gatlin race unlikely

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Usain Bolt will return to Rio de Janeiro next month to run a special 100 metres on the beach, he said on his website on Sunday, but the Jamaican world record holder is now unlikely to race against Justin Gatlin this year.

The six times Olympic gold medallist added the August 17 "Mano a Mano" 100m on Copacabana Beach to three previously announced races in what he said was his finalised schedule for 2014.

Bolt streaked to victory in a 150m race at the famous beach in March 2013 on a track specially built for the event.

He has delayed opening his season this year because of a foot injury and will start with a 4x100 metres relay with his Jamaican team mates at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow on Aug 1-2.

The eight-times world champion will also run 100m races in Warsaw, Poland on Aug 23 and at the Zurich Diamond League meeting on Aug 28.

The schedule, unless amended, means Bolt and U.S. world silver medallist Gatlin, who is undefeated this year, are unlikely to meet before 2015.

Gatlin, who returned from a four-year doping ban in 2010, will not receive an invitation to race against Bolt in Zurich because of the Swiss meeting's "policy to not invite athletes that have been banned for two years or more", meeting director Patrick Magyar told Reuters via email.

While the 100 metres race in Zurich is not part of the Diamond League series of events, the 200 metres race at the same meeting will be.

Gatlin could therefore still race in the longer event, because it is governed by Diamond League rules.

"If Gatlin is, by the time of Zurich, in the top three of the Diamond Race (for the 200), we will invite him for the 200m, which is our Diamond Race event," Magyar said.

Gatlin, who has won 11 consecutive 100 metres and two races at 200m this year, is currently tied for fourth in the Diamond League standings for the 200m despite running the year's fastest time at last week's Monaco meeting.

Fellow American Tyson Gay, who recently completed a one-year doping ban, already is confirmed for the 200m, Magyar said.

- NEXT: Hamilton feared for safety of marshals


Image: Usain Bolt
Photographs: Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

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Hamilton feared for safety of marshals at German GP

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Lewis Hamilton said he had feared for the safety of German Grand Prix marshals who ran across the track during the race to push clear Adrian Sutil's stranded Sauber while other cars were lapping at speed.

The Mercedes driver, who finished third in a race won by team mate Nico Rosberg, told reporters he had been surprised by what happened when the Sauber was left in the middle of the track after the final corner on lap 48.

While many expected the safety car to be deployed, the race direction decided not to.

"I was really concerned for the marshals, really concerned," said the Briton.

"When you come around that corner at serious speed, and then there are marshals standing not far away from where you are driving past. For me that's the closest it's been for a long, long time."

The 2008 world champion said he had been reminded of the 1977 death of Welshman Tom Pryce during the South African Grand Prix when he hit a marshal who was crossing the track with a fire extinguisher.

The marshal was also killed.

"I used to work at a driving school in Bedford (England) and one day I came in and they had this video that was playing all the time," recalled Hamilton.

"It was a video from a race from years and years ago and a car had stopped on the track, a marshal ran across the track and got hit by a car coming past. That was the first thing I thought about.

"Obviously we are not going as fast as on that straight but I was worried about the marshals...Fortunately no one got hurt."

- NEXT: Red Bull, Ferrari considered protest


Image: Mercedes Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton from Great Britain
Photographs: Kai Pfaffenbach/Reuters

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Red Bull, Ferrari considered protest over brake discs

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Red Bull and Ferrari considered protesting Mercedes after the dominant Formula One team switched their brand of brake discs without penalty before the start of Sunday's German Grand Prix.

"We discussed it internally... we decided not to move forward with it," Ferrari principal Marco Mattiacci told reporters after championship leader Nico Rosberg won the race for Mercedes with team mate Lewis Hamilton third.

Hamilton crashed heavily in qualifying after a front brake disc failure. He raced with a different brand while Rosberg changed the rear discs on his car.

Although the governing International Automobile Federation (FIA) said the change was within the regulations, Red Bull principal Christian Horner suggested the decision had set a precedent.

"It is a change of car specification," he told reporters.

"If you change it like for like that is one thing, but if you change it for something that is made by a different manufacturer that has a different characteristic, as described by the driver himself as something different, then it is an interesting precedent."

Horner, who said both his drivers had raced with Brembo brake discs similar to those used by Hamilton in qualifying, felt there was a need for further clarification from the FIA.

"Obviously if you can do that (change discs), then what else can you change? It will be interesting to see what the justification of that allowance was," he said.

Mercedes have won nine of the 10 races so far, with champions Red Bull winning the other.

- NEXT: Vietnam police detain players over match-fixing claims


Image: Infiniti Red Bull Racing Team Principal Christian Horner
Photographs: Mark Thompson/Getty Images

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Vietnam police detain players over match-fixing claims

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Police have detained six Vietnamese soccer players on suspicion of throwing a domestic league game at the weekend, state-run media reported on Monday, the latest arrests in a country notorious for match-rigging and illicit sports gambling.

The six Dong Nai players were questioned by police investigators immediately after their 5-3 defeat by Quang Ninh in a top flight V.League match, Vietnam Television said in an online report.

Police declined to comment.

Match-fixing has long plagued Vietnamese soccer, with arrests of coaches, bookmakers and players commonplace. Soccer is the most popular sport and gambling is rampant, despite being strictly illegal.

Police made dozens of arrests during the World Cup and carried out raids on underground gangs that were handling at least 6.5 trillion dong ($307 million).

Local soccer bosses have pushed to legalise sports betting in conservative Vietnam to stifle match-fixing and boost tax revenues, capping bets at 1 million dong (nearly $50), but after 14 years, efforts have proved fruitless.

In April, local side Vissai Ninh Binh withdrew from the V.League over a match-fixing scandal in the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup.


Image: A player kicks a football (Image used for representational purposes only
Photographs: Michael Regan/Getty Images

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