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Mason Greenwood’s Getafe debut met with chants calling for him to die



Mason Greenwood was greeted with chants calling for him to die from visiting supporters as he returned to the field for the first time in a year and a half but was defended by his own fans – and inside seven minutes had won the corner from which Getafe scored the winner against Osasuna at the Coliseum Alfonso Pérez.

Greenwood’s new coach José Bordalás admitted he was “pleasantly surprised” after the on-loan Manchester United forward produced an impressive 25-minute debut in the 3-2 win despite not having played since January last year.

Bordalás also apologised for a “misunderstanding” in which he mistakenly claimed that Jude Bellingham had encouraged Greenwood to come to Spain.

“Mason is a great player, we have a lot of trust in him and I think it will be very positive for Getafe and for Spanish football,” he said.

Greenwood was charged with attempted rape, controlling and coercive behaviour and assault in October 2022 after allegations were made against him online. The charges, which he denied, were dropped by the Crown Prosecution Service in February.

Despite that, United did not return him to the squad, meaning that his last game was a 1-0 win over West Ham over a year earlier, in January 2022. But he showed little sign of inactivity in his first game since joining Getafe on a year’s long loan the final day of the transfer window.

When he was introduced with the score 2-2 in the 77th minute of a game in which there would be almost 13 minutes of added time, a small pocket of Osasuna supporters briefly chanted “Greenwood, muérete!” [Greenwood die].

They were immediately drowned out by whistles from the Getafe fans, who were left excited by a debut in which Greenwood showed flashes of speed and a willingness to run at opponents. Every time he got the ball, there was a sense of anticipation around the ground. Playing off the front to the right, he had already gone at his full back twice when a shot was charged down, earning Getafe the corner from which Nemanja Maksimovic headed an 85th-minute winner.

The Osasuna coach Jagoba Arrasate described those chants as “very bad”.

“We’re pleasantly surprised by him,” Bordalás said. “Today was a difficult game that was very back and forth. He helped us in attack and in defence too. He showed solidarity with his team, and he surprised us [physically]. We are still working with him, as he has gone many months without playing. We will talk this calmly. I imagine today will have been special for him and he will have the satisfaction of feeling like a footballer again. What a footballer wants is to compete, to play.”

Bordalás added: “I only talk about the sporting side of things. Today what I take with me is the expectation of the fans, because he is a great player. We are happy [with him]. He has integrated well, taking into account how little time he has been here. It’s true that the language is a handicap but we are helping him a lot. He is taking lessons with a teacher and we are trying to accelerate his Spanish. His behaviour has been very good. He comes with enthusiasm and the desire to improve.”

Those chants from the Osasuna fans, while very brief, may be an indicator of the kind of reception Greenwood could face in some grounds. But, asked if was prepared for the charges Greenwood faced to follow him around this season and to deal with similar moments, the Getafe manager said: “What happened and what people say is something we’re not part of.

“As I said after the Real Madrid game, we can only talk about sporting issues and we’re happy there. We think this [loan spell] is good for him, good for Getafe and good for football.”

Bordalás also took the opportunity to withdraw comments in an interview in which he suggested Bellingham had played a part in Greenwood coming to La Liga.

“I said that Mason had come to Getafe because he had spoken to Jude Bellingham. I have had that clarified. It has been confirmed to me that it was not like that, that was nothing to do with it,” the Getafe manager said, unprompted, after the game. “I want to say sorry. I have communicated that [apology] internally too. Mason came here another way: because of our interest, because he was offered to us and we were very interested.”

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Delta, Lagos Make The List As Karate Federation Releases Names Of Talent Discovered At Youth Games




The Karate Federation of Nigeria has just released a 12-man list of talent discovered at the recently concluded 7th National Youth Games in Asaba, Delta State.

According to the document signed by Javan Bernard for the Secretary General of the Karate Federation of Nigeria, and sighted by Sports Marketing International, only six states out of the good numbers of states that participated in the karate event of the games made the list with Delta State having the highest numbers of athletes, followed by Lagos, Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Anambra, Edo and Oyo State.

From Delta are Eteimo Victory (-47kg), Ehiozube Jennifer (+47kg), Ehiozube Joshua (-50kg) and Oba Emmanuel (+50kg), Team Lagos have Akorede Elizabeth Gbemisola (-47kg) and Alabi Sherif Adigun (+50kg). Team Edo have Jimoh Bright (+50kg).

Others are Mariam Gimba (-47kg) and Ngodoo Stefanie (+47kg) from the FCT. Team Anambra have Goodluck Chukwuemeka Njoku (-50kg) and Collins Chiagozie Ndikwe (-50kg), while Team Oyo have only Vincent Like (-50kg).

It would be recalled that while speaking with journalists in Asaba during the youth games, Minister of Sports Development, John Enoh reiterated that his tenure in the ministry would focus on giving the young talents the attention they deserved, adding that one of his administration’s focuses is unearthing and also supporting young talents, who will transition into elite stars in the future.

He said athletes discovered at the Asaba 2023 would be groomed and monitored for them to be stars in their respective sports while noting that the country must ensure that there is no void in the continuum of progress when current elites begin to draw closer to the twilight of their careers.

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U.S. court to hear arguments over Ronaldo rape case settlement




A U.S. appeals court plans to hear Wednesday from lawyers trying to revive a woman’s bid to force Cristiano Ronaldo to pay millions more than the $375,000 in hush money he paid her after she claimed he raped her in Las Vegas in 2009.

An attorney for the woman is asking the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn the dismissal of the case in June 2022 and reopen the civil lawsuit she first filed in Nevada in 2018.

The appeal argues the federal court judge in Nevada erred in repeatedly rejecting the woman’s attempts to unseal and include as evidence the confidentiality agreement she signed in 2010 in accepting payments from Ronaldo.

A three-judge panel of the San Francisco-based appellate court isn’t expected to issue an immediate ruling after it’s scheduled to question attorneys for Ronaldo and his accuser, Kathryn Mayorga, during oral arguments Wednesday at a special sitting at the law school on the campus of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Mayorga gave consent through her lawyers, including Leslie Mark Stovall, to make her name public.

Ronaldo is one of the most recognizable and richest athletes in the world. He is the captain of Portugal’s national soccer team and has played for the Spanish team Real Madrid, Manchester United in England and the Italian club Juventus. He joined Saudi Arabian club Al Nassr at the start of the year after ending his second stint at Manchester United.

Las Vegas police reopened a rape investigation after Mayorga’s lawsuit was filed, but Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson decided in 2019 not to pursue criminal charges. He said too much time had passed and evidence failed to show that Mayorga’s accusation could be proved to a jury.

Mayorga, a former teacher and model from the Las Vegas area, was 25 when she met Ronaldo at a nightclub in 2009 and went with him and other people to his hotel suite. She alleges in her lawsuit filed almost a decade later that Ronaldo, then 24, sexually assaulted her in a bedroom. Ronaldo, through his lawyers, maintained the sex was consensual. The two reached a confidentiality agreement in 2010 under which Stovall acknowledged that Mayorga received $375,000.

In dismissing the case last year, U.S. District Judge Jennifer Dorsey in Las Vegas took the unusual step of levying a $335,000 fine against Mayorga’s lead lawyer, Stovall, for acting in “bad faith” in filing the case on his client’s behalf. Stovall’s appeal on Mayorga’s behalf, filed in March calls Dorsey’s ruling “a manifest abuse of discretion,” seeks to open the records and revive the case.

It alleges Mayorga wasn’t bound by the confidentiality agreement because Ronaldo or his associates violated it before a German news outlet, Der Spiegel, published an article in April 2017 titled “Cristiano Ronaldo’s Secret” based on documents obtained from what court filings called “whistleblower portal Football Leaks.” Ronaldo’s lawyers argued — and the judge agreed — the “Football Leaks” documents and the confidentiality agreement are the product of privileged attorney-client discussions, there is no guarantee they are authentic and can’t be considered as evidence.

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Ten Hag: I’m responsible for latest defeat; there are no excuses again




Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has said everyone at the club is sticking “together” following their 3-2 loss to Galatasaray in the Champions League on Tuesday.

The defeat was United’s sixth in their last 10 games in all competitions — a torrid run of form has left them bottom of Champions League Group A and 10th in the Premier League.

“Last season was brilliant, terrific, more than we can expect, but also in this project there would be gaps and this moment is a very difficult period,” Ten Hag told a postmatch news conference.

“We are fighting together, we will stick together, we are behind each other; me, the directors and team all together, we will fight. We know we will do better and together we will come out.

“I am responsible for this team, this result, together with my squad. We have to do better but also I have seen a team with great spirit, and also one backed by the crowd from the start to the end. In the end the fans are disappointed as we are. But the good thing from this team is every time they find the energy.”

Goalkeeper André Onana made a sloppy pass to Galatasaray forward Mauro Icardi that led to Casemiro giving away a penalty and being sent off. The error comes after a rough start to life at Old Trafford, coming after a mistake in their previous Champions League defeat allowed Bayern Munich to open the scoring.

“We are happy with our goalkeeping group,” Ten Hag said. “Last season, Andre was in a final in the Champions League and can be one of the best goalkeepers in the world. We have seen already his great capabilities and also his personality. He will make a mistake and bounce back, and will do so again, I am sure,” he said.

“There are no excuses. Maybe we’re unbalanced [on the] left side but we still can’t make the errors we are and we have to do better, simple as that.”

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