Ribery banned three matches for pushing linesman
Fiorentina’s veteran forward Franck Ribery has been suspended for three matches by Serie A’s disciplinary tribunal for pushing a linesman following his side’s 2-1 home defeat by Lazio on Sunday.
Video footage showed the 36-year-old, who had been substituted in the 74th minute, remonstrating with match officials after the final whistle as Fiorentina protested about Lazio’s winning goal. He then pushed one of the linesman before being restrained by team mates and was shown the red card.
Describing Ribery’s conduct as “seriously disrespectful”, Serie A’s disciplinary tribunal said on Monday that Ribery had approached the linesman with “threatening behaviour” and pushed him twice.
Earlier, Ribery — who was also fined 20,000 euros ($22,196) — apologised on Twitter for his behaviour, saying that he was “agitated” after the controversial finish.
Fiorentina asserted that the move which led to Lazio’s 89th-minute goal began with a foul by Jordan Lukaku on Riccardo Sotil and were baffled as to why the referee did not review the incident on the pitchside monitor — instead relying on a silent check by the VAR official.
US women's national team appoints Andonovski as head coach
Vlatko Andonovski was vaulted into one of the most coveted positions in women's soccer on Monday, taking the helm of the United States women's national team in the wake of their record-extending fourth World Cup victory.
Andonovski, a coach in the National Women's Soccer League (NWSL), takes over from Jill Ellis who, after leading the team to a second back-to-back World Cup title in July, announced that she would step down.
“Vlatko is known for his deep understanding of the game, his unmatched preparation and his tactical flexibility," U.S. Soccer president Carlos Cordeiro told reporters at a media conference announcing the appointment.
"Frankly, I can’t imagine a more perfect match than this coach for this team at this moment in time."
The Macedonian-born Andonovski, 43, told reporters that qualifying for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic tournament was "first thing on the agenda" and that he would mix the team's deep collection of veteran players in among new prospects.
"We have a very experienced team –- we have players that have been on the international stage, that have won big games, big tournaments, so we’re going to rely heavily on them, but that doesn’t mean we’re not going to expand the roster," said Andonovski.
A former player himself, Andonovski had served as a head coach in the NWSL since 2013, a stint that included two championships, in 2014 and 2015.
Most recently, he coached Reign FC, working with current U.S. national team member Megan Rapinoe, and taking the team to the league semi-finals, despite losing some players to injury and World Cup competition during the season.
National team General Manager Kate Markgraf said she had spoken to current and former players during the selection process and that Andonovski's coaching record "speaks for itself".
He joins the national team during a transformative year, months after the players filed a gender discrimination lawsuit against their governing body.
Asked about the issue of gender pay equity, Andonovski said he was "very respectful of the drive, of the push that the players have".
The team sued U.S. Soccer in March and now awaits a May 2020 trial date after mediation between the two parties fell apart in August.
Spanish women footballers to strike over pay and conditions
Top-flight women footballers in Spain are going on strike indefinitely from Nov. 16 over a disagreement about pay and conditions, the Association of Spanish Footballers (AFE) said on Monday.
Last week, 93% of players employed by 16 first division clubs voted to go on strike and after a meeting between the AFE, other unions and the Association of Women’s Football Clubs (ACFF) failed to resolve the issue the plans were announced.
“There has been no agreement with the Association of Women’s Football Clubs and, therefore, an indefinite strike of first division matches has been called, which will begin the weekend of Nov. 16-17,” said the AFE in a statement.
The main point of conflict between the clubs and players is part-time contracts, with the AFE asking for a minimum of 12,000 euros net a month for players on a part-time salary, while the clubs offer 8,000.
“We are 100% football players, every hour of the day,” said Ainhoa Tirapu, vice-president of the AFE women’s football committee and the Athletic Bilbao goalkeeper, last week.
The women’s top flight is run by the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF). An RFEF source said the governing body was following the matter with concern although it was an issue between the clubs and the players.
The ACFF did not immediately respond to a request for comment.