FIFA ethics body clears Infantino from criminal case

first_imgRelatedPostsNo Content Available FIFA president Gianni Infantino can continue in office while under criminal investigation in Switzerland, the soccer body’s ethics committee ruled on Wednesday.Preliminary investigations into Infantino’s conduct – relating to his undisclosed meetings with Swiss attorney general Michael Lauber and taking a private flight on FIFA business from the Caribbean to Geneva – have been closed. In a statement published by FIFA, chief ethics investigator Maria Claudia Rojas noted: “The evident lack of a prima facie case regarding any alleged breach of the FIFA Code of Ethics.”Rojas ruled that not even a provisional suspension from duty was required.The decision was published just three weeks after a criminal proceeding was opened against Infantino by a Swiss special prosecutor.He assessed several complaints about the FIFA leader’s meetings in 2016 and 2017 with the attorney general, Michael Lauber, and possible abuse of public office.Still, the ethics ruling was expected after FIFA defended its president in a robust and at times testy way in recent weeks. Infantino was cleared in the internal investigation hours after FIFA published the agenda for its remote congress he will chair online from Zurich on September 18.It also came on the day a Swiss parliamentary commission confirmed Lauber would leave his job on August 31.Lauber offered his resignation last month after a disciplinary sanction was not overturned on appeal.Tags: Criminal InvestigationFIFA president Gianni Infantinolast_img read more

Louis van Gaal not feeling the pressure but wary of ending on a low note

first_img On Friday Van Gaal dismissed reports suggesting there has been player unrest in the camp, stressing he has the “confidence” of the squad, as well as of the board. But having admitted no manager is safe as he expressed his surprise at Jose Mourinho’s sacking at Chelsea, Van Gaal also said he knows no improvement in United’s results could mean “the end of the world” for him – and emphasised his eagerness to avoid bowing out from football by being fired. Asked ahead of Saturday’s home league clash with Norwich if he was currently under the most pressure he had been as a manager, Van Gaal said: “No. “The pressure when I started as a manager was much higher. I cannot lose now that I am at the end of my career.” He was then asked if that affected his hunger and desire, and Van Gaal replied: “No, because I don’t want to finish my career with the club sacking me. “That would be a great disappointment for me, to say goodbye to the football world by being fired. “I think my honour is much more pressure for me than the pressure of the media and the fans.” United fans have certainly been among the critics of the playing style, with some voicing their frustration at matches with boos and shouts of ”attack, attack, attack”. Press Association The 64-year-old Dutchman, who has stated his intention to retire when his current contract runs out in 2017, is enduring a tough time at the moment. United are winless in five games in all competitions, have been beaten in their last two, are out of the Champions League and are six points off the top of the Barclays Premier League, while their playing style has been widely derided as dull. Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal insists he has been under far greater pressure in his career than he is now – but is wary of suffering the “great disappointment” of it concluding with him being sacked. And while questioning what he could lose at this stage of his career, Van Gaal did say: “If I lose the confidence of the fans, that for me would be very sad.” Asked about the supporter disgruntlement and whether he felt the fans were still with him, Van Gaal called for belief from the stands. ”It’s always like that when you lose. Then fans have to prove their belief again,” he said. ”The board can see what you can do as a manager in practice but the fans cannot see that, so when you lose you need the belief of the fans. ”It is a question for the fans, not the manager.” Van Gaal has no doubt United need to start winning – after last week’s loss at Bournemouth he set a specific target of victories in each of their next three games – and that it will provide an answer to criticism better than anything he can say. But he also stressed on Friday that points are more important than performances in the current situation. “We need that maybe, but for me it is more important that we win,” he said when asked whether United needed to deliver a display on Saturday to lift the crowd. If United are to win against Norwich, skipper Wayne Rooney could be key. The striker has been out for three games with an ankle injury but has trained all week and Van Gaal said he may return to action on Saturday for what would be his 500th United appearance. Rooney has not enjoyed his best campaign so far, but is still his club’s top scorer for 2015-16 with seven goals. And Van Gaal believes the 30-year-old can be a force at the top level for at least two or three more seasons. “I think so because we are playing like we have played this year and nevertheless he has scored the most goals – it is still Wayne Rooney,” Van Gaal said. Defender Chris Smalling (groin) and midfielder Ander Herrera (hamstring) could also return on Saturday after spells on the sidelines. last_img read more

Jimmy Garoppolo ‘obviously a little frustrated’ with lackluster preseason debut

first_img“Yeah, obviously a lot of excitement,” Garoppolo said, via NBC Sports Bay Area. “Anxious to get out there and everything but nothing too crazy. It’s something I haven’t done in a year obviously, so got to knock the rust off and everything and thankfully we have a short week this week so we can bounce back quickly but it’s the first step of getting back into it.” Despite being replaced by C.J. Beathard after three drives, Garoppolo is just glad he got all the nerves out early. Related News Julian Edelman injury update: Patriots receiver passes physical, practices for first time in 3 1/2 weeks Jimmy Garoppolo’s preseason debut didn’t go exactly as planned.The 49ers quarterback failed to impress in his first game back from his season-ending ACL injury last September as he went 1-for-6 for zero yards and an interception for a lousy 0.0 passer rating in Monday’s 24-15 win over the Broncos. Melvin Gordon staying ready, says he’s ‘just waiting on the call’ Julio Jones’ agent headed to Atlanta to talk new Falcons deal, report says “Obviously a little frustrated but it’s the NFL,” Garoppolo said. “Unfortunately, we don’t get to play the whole game right now so I only get so many plays. You wish you could be out there for more so we could bounce back. But it is what it is. It’s preseason right now, so we just have to take it in stride.”Even though the outing wasn’t pretty, Niners coach Kyle Shanahan is still convinced the exposure did Garoppolo plenty of good. “Yeah, of course,” Shanahan said. “He’s had a year off football, and before that he only played about eight games total. The more he can play, the better. I wish we could have kept him out there longer today but you risk everyone else too, so I had to get those guys out of there.”Garoppolo, 27, was traded from the Patriots to the Niners in 2017 and then signed a five-year contract worth $137 million with San Francisco last year before tearing his ACL in Week 3.The Niners will visit the Chiefs on Saturday before wrapping up exhibition play at home next Thursday against the Chargers.last_img read more