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Soccer Extras: Spain striker Torres announces retirement

June 21, 2019 14:57 IST

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Torres, who scored more than 100 goals across two spells at his boyhood club Atletico Madrid, also played for Premier League sides Liverpool and Chelsea and Italy's AC Milan.

IMAGE: Fernando Torres, who scored more than 100 goals across two spells at his boyhood club Atletico Madrid, also played for Premier League sides Liverpool and Chelsea and Italy's AC Milan. Photograph: Denis Doyle/Getty Images

Spain's World Cup winning striker Fernando Torres announced his retirement from football on Friday, bringing an end to a glittering 18-year career.

Torres, who scored more than 100 goals across two spells at his boyhood club Atletico Madrid, also played for Premier League sides Liverpool and Chelsea and Italy's AC Milan.

He left Atletico to join Japan's Sagan Tosu in July last year but has struggled to hit the heights of his best days at Atletico and Liverpool at the J-League side.

 

"After 18 exciting years, the time has come to put an end to my football career," the 35-year-old wrote on Twitter, adding that he would hold a news conference in Japan on Sunday to explain his decision.

Torres made his Spain debut in 2003 and scored the winning goal in the 2008 European Championship final against Germany before helping his country win their first World Cup in 2010.

He was the top scorer at Euro 2012 as Spain successfully defended their title and scored 38 goals in 110 appearances for his country in total, making him Spain's country's third-highest goalscorer behind David Villa (59) and Raul (44).

Torres enjoyed his the most prolific spell at Liverpool between 2007 and 2011, netting 81 goals in 142 games across all competitions.

He moved to Chelsea from Liverpool for a then British record fee of 50 million pounds ($63.49 million), and won the FA Cup, Champions League and Europa League with the London club.

Cech returns to Chelsea as technical advisor

Petr Cech spent 11 years at Chelsea before moving to Arsenal in 2015

IMAGE: Petr Cech spent 11 years at Chelsea before moving to Arsenal in 2015. Photograph: John Sibley/Reuters

Chelsea have appointed their former goalkeeper Petr Cech as technical and performance advisor, the Premier League club announced on Friday.

Cech spent 11 years as a player at Chelsea, winning 13 major trophies, including four Premier League titles and the Champions League, before moving to their London rivals Arsenal in 2015.

In his new role, the 37-year-old will work closely with Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia and the first-team coaching staff and travel with the team to away games, the club said in a statement.

"I feel very privileged to have this opportunity to join Chelsea again and help create the best possible high level performance environment to continue the success the club has had over the past 15 years," Cech told Chelsea's website.

"I'm looking forward to the new challenge and hope I can use all of my football knowledge and experience to help the team achieve even more success in the future."

Cech ended his playing career with Arsenal at the end of last season, making his final professional appearance in their 4-1 defeat by Chelsea in last month's Europa League final.

His appointment kick-starts an overhaul of Chelsea's backroom staff, with the club also looking to appoint a new manager after Maurizio Sarri left for Juventus.

Cech's former Chelsea team mate Frank Lampard has emerged as favourite to replace Sarri after guiding DerbyCounty to the Championship (second-tier) playoff final in his first season in management.

'Wan-Bissaka's head turned by Man United link'

Crystal Palace defender Aaron Wan-Bissaka's head has been turned by reports that he is wanted by Manchester United, England Under-21 manager Aidy Boothroyd has said.

British media reported that the Premier League clubs are in talks over a deal for the right back, who is representing England at the European Under-21 Championship and scored an injury time own goal in their 2-1 defeat by France on Tuesday.

"When that speculation is flying around it is bound to turn your head," Boothroyd told reporters.

"For a young player... it would be daft not to say that in some way he must think about it.

"What I will say is because he doesn't say too much you don't get to find out too much. He keeps things to himself and is a very private guy."

The 21-year-old, who has three years left on his Palace contract, started 35 Premier League games for the club last season.

Costa Rica beat Bermuda to advance to Gold Cup quarter-finals

Goals from Mayron George and Elias Aguilar helped Costa Rica to a 2-1 victory over Bermuda in Texas on Thursday that also earned them a place in the quarter-finals of the Gold Cup with a match to spare.

Haiti, who earlier beat Nicaragua 2-0, also qualified for the quarter-finals with Costa Rica's victory. Both sides have won two games and meet in New Jersey in their final Group B match on Monday.

George opened the scoring for Los Ticos in the 30th minute when he pounced on a shot parried away by Bermuda goalkeeper Dale Eve and fired in from close range.

Aguilar doubled the lead in the 54th minute when the Bermuda defence failed to pick him up when he got the ball inside the box and he skipped in a shot from distance.

Nahki Wells converted a 59th-minute penalty for Gold Cup debutants Bermuda, who had some decent second half opportunities but were unable to find an equaliser in the hot and humid conditions in Frisco.

Bermuda finish their campaign against Nicaragua, also in New Jersey on Monday.

Deflections give Haiti 2-0 win over Nicaragua

Haiti were the fortuitous beneficiaries of two deflected first half goals then produced a solid second half defensive effort to beat Nicaragua 2-0 at the Gold Cup in Texas on Thursday.

Despite Nicaragua controlling possession for most of the game, Haiti got on the board in the 22nd minute when Steeven Saba's long-range shot deflected off a defender past Nicaraguan goalkeeper Henry Maradiaga.

Haiti doubled the advantage 12 minutes later when Nicaraguan defender Manuel Rosas deflected the ball into his own net for an own goal on a scorching hot day in Frisco.

The Haitians are unbeaten in Group B. Second-placed Costa Rica face Bermuda later on Thursday.

Haiti and Costa Rica meet in New Jersey on Monday. 

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