Milan derby drawn; Beckham makes winning debut for PSG

Updated 26 February 2013
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Milan derby drawn; Beckham makes winning debut for PSG

LONDON: AC Milan’s surge up the Serie A table was slowed by a 1-1 derby draw with Inter Milan while Paris St. Germain and substitute David Beckham won the big match in France as the leaders beat Olympique Marseille 2-0.
The runaway leaders in Spain, England and Germany all secured victories with Barcelona, Manchester United and Bayern Munich now in sight of their respective titles.

ENGLAND
Manchester United remained 12 points clear of Manchester City at the top of the Premier League after both teams recorded comfortable 2-0 victories over the weekend.
United won at bottom club Queens Park Rangers on Saturday thanks to a spectacular early goal by young Brazilian right back Rafael and a late one by 39-year-old midfielder Ryan Giggs.
Second-half goals by Yaya Toure and Carlos Tevez earned City a deserved victory over third-placed Chelsea, who are only a point clear of Tottenham Hotspur ahead of their London rivals’ trip to West Ham United on Monday.
Swansea City crushed fourth tier Bradford City 5-0 at Wembley to win the Capital One (League) Cup, the first major trophy in their history.
Nathan Dyer and Jonathan de Guzman scored two goals each and striker Michu was also on target for Michael Laudrup’s Premier League side.

SPAIN
Leaders Barcelona and third-placed Real Madrid both had to come from behind to win 2-1 in La Liga this weekend, as they fielded weakened sides ahead of their King’s Cup semi-final second leg on Tuesday.
David Villa and Lionel Messi scored as Barca rallied to beat Sevilla at home, shaking off any hangover felt from their shock 2-0 defeat at AC Milan in the Champions League last week.
It was only after Cristiano Ronaldo came on as a second-half substitute that Real came back to beat bottom club Deportivo Coruna with goals from Kaka and Gonzalo Higuain.
Barca have 68 points from 25 games, 12 ahead of Atletico Madrid in second after they maintained their perfect home record with a 1-0 win with 10 men at home to Espanyol. Radamel Falcao’s penalty kept them four points ahead of Real.

ITALY
Defending champions and leaders Juventus found little resistance from lowly Siena in a 3-0 win on Sunday, Stephan Lichtsteiner, Sebastian Giovinco and Paul Pogba sharing the goals.
Juventus, who have 58 points from 26 games, moved seven clear of Napoli, who visit Udinese on Monday.
Third-placed AC Milan, a further six points behind, dominated the first half of the derby against Inter Milan and went ahead through Stephan El Shaarawy after 20 minutes.
But they were pegged back when Ezequiel Schelotto headed in, three minutes after coming on as a substitute, for fifth-placed Inter.

GERMANY
Bayern Munich opened up a 17-point lead at the top of the Bundesliga and are cruising unhindered toward their first league title in three years after a 6-1 demolition of Werder Bremen, their 19th win in 23 games.
Mario Gomez was twice on target and Arjen Robben also scored as coach Jupp Heynckes made six changes to the team that beat Arsenal 3-1 in the Champions League in midweek.
Borussia Dortmund’s title defense looks dead in the water after their 1-1 draw at Borussia Moenchengladbach despite having the hosts on the backfoot for more than an hour.
Dortmund, however, managed to hold on to second spot after Bayer Leverkusen produced a lacklustre performance in a goalless draw at bottom-placed Greuther Fuerth.

FRANCE
David Beckham enjoyed a winning Paris St. Germain debut as goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu produced an outstanding performance in a 2-0 home victory over Ligue 1 title rivals Olympique Marseille.
Ligue 1 leaders PSG opened the scoring thanks a bizarre Nicolas Nkoulou own goal in the 12th minute and Zlatan Ibrahimovic sealed victory from close range in stoppage time.
PSG have 54 points from 26 games, three ahead of Olympique Lyon, who beat Lorient 3-1 at home thanks to Lisandro Lopez, Rachid Ghezzal and Arnold Mvuemba’s goals. Marseille stayed third on 46.

NETHERLANDS
Third-placed Feyenoord beat leaders PSV Eindhoven 2-1 at home thanks to second-half goals from Ruben Schaken and Graziano Pelle to stay in the title race as they reduced the gap to three points.
Ajax Amsterdam, in second, wasted the chance to go level on points with PSV as they were held to a 1-1 draw at home against ADO Den Haag.
Steve McClaren’s Twente Enschede slipped to fifth as their woes continued with a 2-1 defeat at Heerenveen.

PORTUGAL
Porto and Benfica’s tight race at the top of the Portuguese Premier League continued with both coming out victorious against Rio Ave and Pacos de Ferreira to remain joint-leaders on 52 points after 20 matches.
In-form Colombian striker Jackson Martinez went from villain to hero as he grabbed a brace in Porto’s 2-1 win after missing a penalty which he tried to chip.
Benfica brushed aside surprise packages Pacos de Ferreira, who are third in the championship, with a quality performance that earned them a 3-0 win with goals from South American trio Enzo Perez, Oscar Cardozo and Eduardo Salvio.

GREECE
Olympiakos Piraeus continued their march to the title with a 2-1 home win over relegation-threatened Aris Salonika which left their lead at the top at 16 points.

SCOTLAND
Champions Celtic are 21 points clear after a 5-0 home drubbing of bottom side Dundee.


Modi forecasts IPL players will earn ‘$1m a game’

Updated 19 April 2018
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Modi forecasts IPL players will earn ‘$1m a game’

  • Modi believes that if that $12 million cap is relaxed, leading IPL players could earn as much as English Premier League footballers and even NFL stars
  • London-based Modi forecast the end of country versus country contests, which effectively finance professional cricket structures all round the world and the demise of the International Cricket Council, the sport’s global governing body

LONDON: Indian Premier League founder Lalit Modi believes there will come a time when players will earn $1 million dollars per game while warning that the traditional program of matches between countries “will disappear.”
A Twenty20 domestic franchise competition launched a decade ago, which has spawned a host of imitators worldwide, the IPL is now the most lucrative of all cricket tournaments.
“The IPL is here to stay,” Modi told Britain’s Daily Telegraph newspaper in an interview published Thursday. “It will be the dominant sporting league in the world.”
IPL teams are bankrolled by wealthy businessmen operating in an environment where the passion for cricket in India, the world’s second-most populous nation, makes the game an attractive target for sponsors and broadcasters.
At present there is a team salary cap, with the likes of England all-rounder Ben Stokes earning $1.95 million per season from the Rajasthan Royals.
But Modi believes that if that $12 million cap is relaxed, leading IPL players could earn as much as English Premier League footballers and even NFL stars.
That would have a huge impact on international cricket, with players torn between making an IPL fortune and representing their countries.
“You will see players making $1-$2m a game,” said Modi. “It will happen sooner rather than later.
“In a free market the person with the deepest pockets will win. The players will gravitate toward who pays the biggest salary.”
Meanwhile, in a chilling argument for cricket traditionalists, London-based Modi forecast the end of country versus country contests, which effectively finance professional cricket structures all round the world and the demise of the International Cricket Council, the sport’s global governing body.
“Today international cricket does not matter,” he said. “It is of zero value to the Indian fan.
“Tomorrow you will see bilateral cricket disappear,” Modi added. “Big series will happen once every three or four years like the World Cup.
“The ICC will become an irrelevant body. It will be full of fat lugs who have no power. They can scream and shout now and in the future they will threaten to throw India out if they try to expand the IPL but India has the power to stand on its own feet...They have a domestic league that it is going to be 20-times the size of international cricket.”
Modi said the only way five-day international Test cricket, long regarded as the pinnacle of the sport, could survive was if the ICC introduced a long talked-about championship.
“I think there is a window for Test cricket and a World Test championship will survive if all nations get together and make it a proper tournament,” he explained.
“But it has to be a championship. If the ICC does not do it I see no reason why the IPL would not do it instead as a knockout IPL Test championship.”
Modi left India to live in London and has not returned home since 2009. The Board of Control for Cricket in India found him guilty of eight offenses relating to irregularities in the administration of the IPL.
He has never been charged by the Indian government with a crime and denies all accusations, but Modi has repeatedly insisted he cannot go back to India because of underworld threats to his life.