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Stephan Lichtsteiner on Arsenal move: ‘Nothing is concluded’

Juventus right-back Stephan Lichtsteiner says “nothing is concluded” when it comes to his move to Arsenal and refused to comment further on the transfer speculation.cheap nfl jerseys from china nike

Arsenal have been in talks with the 34-year-old about a free transfer when his Juventus contract expires, but the Switzerland international did not give anything away when asked by Swiss media about the negotiations.46

“Nothing is completed yet, no,” he said to newspaper Blick about whether he is close to a move to the Emirates. “I can’t say anything about the negotiations.

“As long as nothing is concluded, that’s what’s always interesting in football. I think we all know that. Therefore, there’s nothing new to say.”

Lichtsteiner is set to captain Switzerland at the World Cup in Russia and said he has “no idea” whether the deal will go through before the tournament starts on June 14.

He insisted he is not paying attention to any reports about the deal, even though both Italian and British media have said it is all but done.

“I don’t read it at all, I’m in Lugano — so in Switzerland. The rumours aren’t even reaching me, and it’s good this way,” he said. “I know Italy very well and I know what gets said, written and speculated about there. I’m used to it.”nike cheap nfl jerseys

Lichtsteiner helped Juventus win seven straight Serie A titles and would add valuable experience to an Arsenal back four that struggled last season as they finished sixth in the Premier League.

He would also provide competition and back-up for Hector Bellerin, who is currently the only natural right-back in the Arsenal squad.

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Yaya Toure accuses Pep Guardiola of having ‘problems with Africans’

Yaya Toure has questioned whether Pep Guardiola has a bias against African players and accused the Manchester City coach of being “cruel” to him, according to an interview with France Football.

Toure, 35, played his final game for City last month after eight seasons at the club, with his farewell match against Brighton his only Premier League start of the season.

And the Ivory Coast international hit out at his former coach in an interview to be published on Tuesday with the title, “Yaya Toure: ‘I want to be the one who destroys the Guardiola myth.'”

“He was cruel towards me,” Toure said in excerpts released on Monday. “Do you really think that he would have been able to do that with [Andres] Iniesta at Barcelona? It reached the point where I asked myself if it was because of my colour.cheap nfl nike jerseys free shipping

“I am not the first, either. Other Barca players asked the question too. It may be that we Africans are not always treated the same by certain people. When you realise that [Guardiola] has often had problems with Africans wherever he has been, I ask myself questions…”45

Asked if he thought Guardiola had problems with players of colour, Toure said: “He pretends not to have — he is too intelligent. He will never admit it. However, the day he fields a team with five Africans, non-naturalised, I promise that I will send him a cake!”

Toure previously played for Guardiola at Barcelona from 2008 to 2010 but left for Manchester City only to be reunited with the Catalan coach six years later.

The midfielder made only 17 appearances in all competitions last season, starting four games in the League Cup and three in the Champions League, and he said he was frustrated in trying to understand why he was often left on the bench.

“I have tried to understand — I politely asked the fitness staff for my statistics and when I discovered that they were as good, sometimes even better, across training session and matches, than those who were playing and younger than me, I understood that this was not a physical question,” Toure said.

“I do not know why but I get the impression that [Guardiola] was jealous of me. He saw me as a rival, as if I was taking the limelight away from him.”cheap nfl jerseys from china nike

Toure had a falling out with Guardiola at the beginning of last season after losing his starting place, but said in May that they had “sorted it out” over the course of the season.

Ahead of Toure’s final start, Guardiola credited him with making the club “big and bigger and bigger and without doubt he was one of the most important players in our history.”

Also on Monday, UEFA suspended Guardiola for City’s first Champions League game next season for his reaction toward the referee in the quarterfinals in April.

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Braves reinstate Luiz Gohara from bereavement list

The Braves reinstated pitcher Luiz Gohara from the bereavement list on Sunday after the lefty returned from an emotion-filled trip to his native Brazil.

Gohara was visiting his mother, Maria, who recently underwent heart surgery. Atlanta placed him on the bereavement list on May 25, which allowed the club to add a player from the 40-man roster to replace him at the big league level.cheap nfl jerseys nike china

“It’s a little hard (coming back) but I’ve got a job to take care of,” Gohara said. “It’s to come back and pitch. I was throwing bullpens and playing catch, everything I could do baseball-wise.”

The past few months have been trying for Gohara, who was ranked as baseball’s 50th best prospect this winter by ESPN’s Keith Law. Gohara’s father died unexpectedly in December. According to MLB.com, he died in the pitcher’s arms as they reached a hospital in Brazil.34

While Gohara will remain in touch with his family back in Brazil, he at least knows that his mother is progressing well in her recovery.

“I feel a big relief after seeing her,” Gohara said. “She’s doing better and everything. Now, it’s like I’ve got one thing on my mind, and it’s to concentrate and go out and pitch. I know she’s doing very good down there. The doctor is going to be (communicating) with me if she’s doing good, or doing worse.”

Gohara arrived in spring training slated to be a member of the Braves’ rotation but was beset with groin and ankle injuries. He went 1-3 with a 4.91 ERA over five starts in his big league debut last season. He didn’t make his first appearance this season until May 10. He is 0-1 with a 2.45 ERA over four appearances, the first three of which came in relief. He’s expected to be used out of the bullpen initially now that he’s rejoined the club.nike cheap nfl jerseys

Gohara had been expected to rejoin the Braves on Friday, but his return was delayed because of the gas shortages that have plagued his native country in recent days because of a truckers strike.

“In Brazil, the city is out of gas,” Gohara said. “Planes are getting canceled, flights and everything. It’s been tough down there in Brazil right now. All of the gas stations are out of gas. I had to go to the airport and we didn’t have gas. It made it hard for me to move to the airport. We were looking for gas everywhere.”

21

NBA: Warriors reportedly irked at Perkins for Curry run-in

The moment that might have sparked Stephen Curry to a dominant fourth quarter in Game 2 of the NBA Finals included a man in a suit on the Cleveland Cavaliers’ bench.

Kendrick Perkins, in street clothes seated on Cleveland’s bench Sunday night, failed to move his feet or legs as Curry backpedaled after missing a 3-point attempt at the end of the third quarter.

Curry, all of 6 feet 3 inches and 190 pounds, turned quickly and barked in the face of the 6-10 Perkins. While Curry said immediately after the game the incident was “much ado about nothing,” and teammate Klay Thompson said it was a “great movie,” forward Draymond Green said it was more than that.nfl football jerseys china

“He went off after that,” Green said of Curry.21

According to ESPN, several players said they were concerned for Curry because of his history of ankle and knee injuries.

Curry told ESPN he wouldn’t get into his thoughts on the sideline run-in, but his play might have done the talking. Curry went for 16 of his game-high 33 points and was 5-of-5 from 3-point range in just eight minutes played in the fourth. Golden State won the game 122-103 to take a 2-0 series lead.official nike nfl jerseys

Perkins, 33, is an interior enforcer for the Cavaliers. He’s recognized as a tough guy, and has been in his share of physical confrontations during his career.

What he hasn’t done this postseason is appear in a game. Perkins last played April 11 against the New York Knicks — his only appearance in a game this season — and has zero minutes played in 20 playoff games against Indiana, Toronto, Boston and Golden State.

9

Eagles’ visit to White House canceled over national anthem dispute

The Philadelphia Eagles will not be attending a ceremony at the White House to honor their February Super Bowl victory, according to a statement by President Donald Trump.

The statement says that the defending Super Bowl champions disagree “with their President because he insists that they proudly stand for the National Anthem, hand on heart, in honor of the great men and women of our military and the people of our country.”cheap nike nfl jerseys from china

Instead of the event honoring the Eagles, the White House will host “A Celebration of America.”

The president’s statement said that the ceremony will be “one that will honor our great country, pay tribute to the heroes who fight to protect it, and loudly and proudly play the National Anthem.”

A large group of Eagles players had decided not to attend, including most — if not all — of the black players, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

In addressing players’ decision to stay home, the president’s statement said “the 1,000 fans planning to attend the event deserve better.”9

On Monday evening, the Eagles released a statement making no reference to the canceled ceremony, which read: “It has been incredibly thrilling to celebrate our first Super Bowl Championship. Watching the entire Eagles community come together has been an inspiration. We are truly grateful for all of the support we have received and we are looking forward to continuing our preparations for the 2018 season.”

Philadelphia mayor Jim Kenney issued a statement that said, in part, “Fans all across the country rallied behind (the Eagles) because we like to root for the underdog and we feel joy when we see the underdogs finally win. I’m equally proud of the Eagles’ activism off the field. These are players who stand up for the causes they believe in and who contribute in meaningful ways to their community. They represent the diversity of our nation-a nation in which we are free to express our opinions.”

Monday’s decision is similar to when Trump told the Golden State Warriors last September they were not welcome at the White House to celebrate their 2017 NBA championship. In that tweet, Trump said going to the White was considered a great honor for a championship team and specifically mentioned Warriors star Stephen Curry.new nike nfl jerseys for sale cheap

Source close to the team say the team will now be expected to be at the team’s training facility Tuesday in South Philadelphia to attend what is called a Phase II day of organized team activities, which includes meetings, weight training and individual on-field drills. Pederson is expected to address the media on Wednesday, when players are also expected to be available.

334

Klay Thompson catches fire beyond arc in Game 6 win: ‘I was born for it’

Klay Thompson had another big Game 6 outing in the Western Conference finals, and this time, the Houston Rockets were on the receiving end of a 115-86 beatdown Saturday night.

With the Golden State Warriors facing elimination, Thompson erupted for a game-high 35 points on 13-of-23 shooting and 9-of-14 from 3-point range. He splashed in seven of his triples in the second half to help his team outscore the Houston Rockets 64-25 in the final two quarters.nfl jersey for cheap

“The guy’s a machine,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “He’s just so fit physically. He seems to thrive in these situations. But he was fantastic.”

In 2016, in another Game 6 elimination scenario against the Oklahoma City Thunder, Thompson exploded for 41 points and drained 11 of 18 3-pointers.

“I don’t know if I was born for it, but I definitely worked my butt off to get to this point. I mean, I guess you could say I was born for it,” Thompson said while laughing. “I guess everything happens for a reason. That felt good, to be honest. I just wanted to play with as much passion as I could tonight. Probably sounded more vocal than I usually am. When your back’s against the wall, if your shot’s not falling, you can always control your passion and how hard you play. Usually when I do that, it trickles over to other aspects of my game.”

Thompson, who displayed several raw-emotion moments seldom seen from him, also contributed six rebounds and four steals. He hadn’t registered four steals in a game since December 2016, and it was the most he has ever accumulated in a postseason game.334

“The most important thing I think Klay did tonight was his defense,” Draymond Green told ESPN. “He changed the game for us definitely, getting into the ball and which in turn allowed us to get loose offensively. It’s ironic how that happens. Play some defense, get out in transition, get some easy looks, and all of a sudden the dam breaks and we can really get into our offense. I think the most important thing he did tonight was what he did defensively.”

On this night, there was no hesitation on Thompson’s part. According to Second Spectrum, on seven of his made 3-pointers, he released the ball within one second of touching it. That’s the most such instances in a game over the past five postseasons.customized nfl jerseys cheap

“I think Klay doesn’t worry too much about repercussions. He doesn’t worry about judgment and results. I think he just loves to play,” Kerr said. “He’s so comfortable in his own skin. I just think he wants to go out there and hoop, and he doesn’t worry about much else. So the pressure doesn’t seem to bother him much. He just competes and plays. As I said, the two-way ability of this guy hounding the MVP of the league, most likely [Rockets guard James Harden], all game, and continuing to rain down 3-pointers, he’s amazing.”

311

Welcome to New England, rookie — no ‘real’ number for you

The methods that have made Bill Belichick one of football’s most successful coaches continue to evolve, and he’s introduced a new one to the mix in 2018: rookies with random, non-permanent jersey numbers in spring practices.

That’s why running back Sony Michel, the first-round pick from Georgia, was wearing No. 51 during Tuesday’s organized team activity.cheap nfl nike jersey

That number is illegal for running backs to wear in games, per NFL rules (numbers 20-49 are allowed), which highlights the point that Belichick is making to his newcomers.

“Really not too worried about all the important stuff like that — numbers and what color gloves you wear and all of that,” Belichick said Tuesday. “That’s not really at the top of the list right now. Trying to learn football, trying to become a team, trying to get better each day — that’s really where our focus is.”311

How Belichick brings the team together to achieve that goal is often notable. In past years, he’s had all players practice without any numbers in the spring, a method that forced them get to know each other better and increase their level of communication. Longtime Pittsburgh Steelers coach Chuck Noll did something similar.

But the NFL since has disallowed that practice, so Belichick, as he often does, has come up with a different type of twist.

Hence the reason rookie quarterback Danny Etling (seventh round, LSU) was wearing a red, noncontact No. 58 jersey at Tuesday’s practice. That wouldn’t be allowed in a game.

“My first-ever football number in school was 28, so that’s the closest I’ve ever got to it,” Etling said of the unusual number.

All draft picks had numbers in the 50s on Tuesday — Nos. 56 (Andre Tippett) and 57 (Steve Nelson) were off limits because they were once owned by Patriots Hall of Famers — while undrafted players had numbers in the 60s and 70s.cheap nfl jerseys china nike

So it was unusual to see Braxton Berrios, the receiver from the University of Miami selected in the sixth round, wearing No. 55.

286

Arsenal’s Henrikh Mkhitaryan looking for ‘new ideas, spirit’ from Unai Emery

Henrikh Mkhitaryan hopes new Arsenal head coach Unai Emery will bring some fresh “tactical ideas and spirit” to the club.

Spaniard Emery has succeeded Arsene Wenger, who was manager for 22 years, and set out his positive vision for the future when speaking at a news conference on Wednesday afternoon.

Attacking midfielder Mkhitaryan joined the Gunners from Manchester United in January as part of the deal which saw Alexis Sanchez head to Old Trafford.nike nfl jerseys wholesale cheap

The Armenia international feels Emery, who left Paris St Germain at the end of the season having won the French domestic treble, can make a real impact at the Emirates Stadium.

“I still haven’t had an opportunity to meet him. We didn’t have time to talk with each other. I hope he will bring new tactical ideas and spirit to Arsenal, and I hope he will succeed,” Mkhitaryan said in an interview with VivaroNews Sport.286

“I haven’t talked to my teammates about him. I would like to meet him.

“Everyone at the club is a professional. Everyone knows what he should do and what he is expected to do.”

Mkhitaryan admits it will be a different club he heads back to for the start of preseason training, with Wenger having been in charge for so long.

“Not only the players, but the staff overall were sad. It’s not that easy to handle the exit of a man who was managing the team for 22 years,” he added.

“You can’t imagine how everyone was amazed with the atmosphere he had created. If he decided to stay for 10 more years, no one would have been against [it].”

Mkhitaryan feels Emery’s Arsenal must target a swift return to the elite of European football.cheap nike nfl jerseys paypal

“Our priority [last season] was qualification for Champions League, but unfortunately we didn’t manage that,” he said.

“We wanted to do it and we fought for it, but everything can happen in football, so we should focus on next season and return to the Champions League in two years.”

285

Arsenal’s Laurent Koscielny thought Diego Costa ended World Cup dream

Arsenal’s Laurent Koscielny says he initially thought the injury that will keep him out of this summer’s World Cup came from a Diego Costa tackle.

France defender Koscielny, 32, ruptured his Achilles’ tendon during the Gunners’ away defeat to Atletico Madrid in their Europa League semifinal second leg at the start of May.

“When I fell, I thought it was because [Diego] Costa had tackled me,” Koscielny told the French Football Federation (FFF) website.nfl nike jerseys for cheap

“But not at all. I looked around me and I was all alone. I immediately knew that my tendon had gone. The pain wasn’t normal — I felt a terrible rupture. And I heard a big ‘splash’ — a huge crack. Costa, who wasn’t far from me, heard it too.285

“My first reaction was to say: ‘It’s done — my tendon has snapped.’ I was screaming on the pitch. I remember hitting my hand on the ground several times. It was an atrocious pain.

“At that exact moment, I knew that it would be at least six months before I could play again.”

Having undergone ankle surgery, Koscielny predicts it will be five months until he kicks a ball again, but says he still hopes to play for the first team by November.

“Now that I’m 32 years old, my career is more behind me than in front of me,” he added.nike nfl jerseys wholesale cheap

“I don’t have the pressure of having to come back as quickly as possible — of proving myself like a 20-year-old would have to after such an injury.

“It’s my first big injury. That’s the way it is. You have to have put it into perspective. Yes, I’m missing a World Cup with a good bunch of mates and great players. But there’s worse in life. I’m in good health and my family are too.”

260

Harden carries early, CP3 leads late as Rockets withstand frenetic Warriors

Finally, the basketball world got to witness the kind of classic it has been waiting all season to see in the highly anticipated Western Conference finals.

After the Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets alternated double-digit wins in the first three games, with the margin of victory soaring each time, Game 4 went down to the wire. The teams will head back to Houston with the series tied after the Rockets scrapped their way to a 95-92 comeback win to stun the sellout Oracle Arena crowd and end the Warriors’ 16-game postseason win streak in Oakland.nike nfl jerseys for sale

The fourth quarter was far from the beautiful basketball expected from two of the best offensive teams in the history of the game. It was more like the 15th round of a fight between heavyweights gassed from throwing haymakers at each other all night.260

The Warriors, a potential dynasty featuring three of the NBA’s premier scorers, managed to score a grand total of 12 points in the final frame. It ended with Stephen Curry, arguably the best shooter ever, missing a good look at a 3-pointer — a shot he failed to get off before the buzzer sounded, anyway.

It was a shocking dud down the stretch for the Warriors, particularly Curry, who was 1-of-8 from the floor in the final frame after carrying Golden State in the third quarter.

That Curry scoring flurry started with a wide-open 29-footer from the left wing midway through the third quarter. He swished a lead-changing, step-back 3 over Clint Capela on the Warriors’ next possession, with the Oracle Arena crowd buzzing throughout the dazzling dribbling display and roaring when the ball splashed through the net. Draymond Green passed up an open look to feed Curry for a corner 3 the next trip. Then Curry sliced through the Rockets’ dizzied defense for a finger roll.

Just like that, the Warriors’ point guard uncorked 11 points in the span of 96 seconds. Curry had 17 in the quarter, matching the Rockets’ total and falling one point shy of his slump-busting, sizzling Game 3 third quarter. As a result, Golden State held a double-digit lead, seemingly putting Houston on the canvas. But the Rockets’ defense, which general manager Daryl Morey made a priority over the summer, came through.cheap official nfl jerseys

It wasn’t the first time in this game that Houston needed to rely on its defense, as the Rockets proved they could fight back after an awful first five minutes. It took 5:18 for Houston’s historically high-powered offense to put any points on the board, as the defending champion Warriors roared out of the gates with a 12-0 run while the Rockets sputtered to eight shots and a couple of turnovers in their first 10 possessions.