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Soccer Extras: Former Uruguay star Forlan announces retirement

Last updated on: August 07, 2019 17:08 IST

Diego Forlan

IMAGE:  Legendary Atletico Madrid player Diego Forlan. Photograph: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY/Reuters

Former Uruguay striker Diego Forlan has announced his retirement, bringing to an end a 21-year career in which he played club soccer on three different continents.

Forlan, who started his career in South America with Argentine club Independiente, played for major European teams such as Manchester United, Villarreal, Atletico Madrid and Inter Milan before ending his career in Asia.

 

Forlan, 40, was also instrumental in Uruguay’s run to the 2010 World Cup semi-finals, where he was awarded the Golden Ball for best player at the tournament and finished as one of the tournament’s top scorers with five goals.

“After 21 years I made the decision to end my career as a professional footballer,” Forlan said in a statement.

“A beautiful stage closes full of great memories and emotions but another of new challenges will begin. Thanks to all who in one way or another accompanied me on this path!”

Forlan won the Premier League and FA Cup with United before moving to Spain where he helped Atletico win the Europa League in 2010 with a double in the final against Fulham.

He also led Uruguay to the Copa America title in 2011, grabbing another two goals in a final, when they beat Paraguay 3-0.

After a short stint in the Indian Super League with Mumbai City in 2016, he last played for Hong Kong Premier League side Kitchee Sports Club last year, wrapping up a career where he scored over 250 goals for club and country.

Man City sign 18-year-old winger Correia from Sporting Lisbon

Manchester City

IMAGE: Portugal's Felix Correia celebrates scoring. Photograph: Jason Cairnduff/Reuters

Premier League champions Manchester City have signed 18-year-old winger Felix Correia from Sporting Lisbon, the Portuguese club said.

Financial details of the deal were not disclosed but British media reported the transfer fee was in the region of 3.2 million pounds ($3.89 million) that could rise a further 3.2 million pounds in add-ons.

"Sporting Clube de Portugal informs that it has reached an agreement with Manchester City for the transfer of player Felix Correia," the club said in a statement here

Correia is yet to make a senior international appearance for Portugal but he has played numerous times for their youth teams, grabbing two goals and two assists with the Under-19 team.

He was an integral part of the Portuguese team at the Under-19 European Championship last month, playing all five matches and helping his side reach the final where they were beaten by Iberian neighbours Spain.

Defending champions City start their league title defence with a trip to West Ham United on Saturday.

Watford sign free agent Welbeck

Watford have signed England forward Danny Welbeck on a free transfer after his release from fellow London side Arsenal, the Premier League club said.

Welbeck, 28, spent five years at Arsenal but played only 14 games in all competitions in his final campaign.

"The Hornets are delighted to confirm the signing of England international forward Danny Welbeck on a free transfer," Watford said in a statement on the club's website here

“The former Manchester United and Arsenal man has agreed a permanent contract... and further bolsters Javi Gracia’s squad ahead of the start of the 2019-20 Premier League season.”

Welbeck made a total of 88 league appearances for Arsenal, scoring 16 goals, after joining them from his boyhood team United for a reported fee of 16 million pounds.

He becomes Watford’s second signing of the close season following centre-back Craig Dawson, who joined from West Bromwich Albion last month.

Watford, who finished 11th last season, begin the new campaign at home to Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday.

Schalke boss Toennies temporarily steps down over controversial comments

Schalke 04 president Clemens Toennies has stepped down as club boss for a period of three months following a board hearing into controversial comments he made last week triggering a racism row.

Toennies, a billionaire owner of a meat processing company, had told a conference last week that instead of increasing taxes to protect the environment there should be more power stations built in Africa.

“Then the Africans would stop cutting down trees and produce babies when it is dark,” Toennies said in his speech in Paderborn.

His comments instantly triggered a wave of angry reactions including from several former Schalke players, and calls for his immediate resignation from his post at the Bundesliga club that has one of the largest and most loyal fan base in Germany.

“I am a bit speechless,” said Ghanaian-born former Germany and Schalke player Gerald Asamoah. “His comments surprised me, shocked me and injured me. He is insulting me and everyone else involved.”

Toennies quickly issued a public apology saying his comments were wrong and inappropriate but said he stood fully behind the club’s fight against racism, discrimination and exclusion.

Schalke’s honorary board met late on Tuesday with Toennies and following a four-hour discussion that ran into the night rejected the claims of racism but said he had violated the club’s anti-discrimination rules.

“He accepted this violation and again expressed his regret. This is why Clemens Toennies has announced that he will step down from chair of the board for a period of three months,” the club said in a statement.

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