Dhaka, May 22 (UNB) – Both the matches of the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) football ended in draw in two separate venues across the country on Wednesday.
Saif Sporting Club shared points with Arambagh Krira Sangha in a 1-1 affair at Rofiq Ullah Bhuiyan Stadium in Mymensingh.
After a barren first half, Paul Emile put Arambagh KS ahead in the 47th minute while Demer levelled the margin for Saif Sporting Club in the 64th minute.
In the other match, Dhaka Mohammedan Sporting Club spilt points with Brother Union Club in a 3-3 affair at the Bangabandhu National Stadium here.
Yusuf Sifat struck twice for the traditional black and white team, Mohammedan, in the 42nd and 44th minute while Taklis Ahmed netted the other goal for the team in the 23rd minute.
Rabbi scored twice for Brothers Union Club in the 69th and 88th minute while Mokarram netted the remaining goal for the team in the 82nd minute.
After the matches, Saif SC remained at the 4th slot in the 13-team league securing 30 points from 15 matches, Arambagh KS stayed at the 5th slot with 20 points from 14 matches, Mohammedan SC remained at the 10th slot with 13 points from 15 matches while Brother Union are under the relegation threat with nine points from 14 encounters.
Buenos Aires, May 22 (AP/UNB) — Argentina included Lionel Messi, Sergio Aguero and Angel Di Maria in its Copa America squad, while Inter Milan striker Mauro Icardi was left out.
Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni announced his list Tuesday, with the attacking trio of Messi, Di Maria and Aguero looking for their first major international title after losing three finals — at the 2014 World Cup and 2015 and 2016 Copa America.
Argentina hasn't won a major trophy since the 1993 Copa America in Ecuador.
Scaloni called up Aguero for the first time since taking over as interim coach following the World Cup in Russia, after the striker helped Manchester City complete a domestic treble in England.
"The figures speak for themselves," Scaloni said about Aguero. "We need to make the pieces fit so we give him the chance to do what he does for his club."
Icardi has been a regular in Scaloni's squads but he recently lost his starting position at Inter because of a contract dispute and the Argentina coach prefers to pick players that get more playing time for their teams.
Scaloni included nine players that were at the World Cup in Russia last year, mixed with a new generation that includes Tottenham defender Juan Foyth, Udinese midfielder Rodrigo de Paul and River Plate striker Exequiel Palacios.
"We are building something today," said Cesar Luis Menotti, the 1978 World Cup-winning coach who is now a director at Argentina's football federation. "The objective is to prepare for the World Cup, but that doesn't mean Copa America is not important."
Argentina is in Group B with Colombia, Paraguay and Qatar. Its first match will be against Colombia on June 15 in Salvador.
Argentina will start training on Jun.27 for the South American tournament.
Goalkeepers: Esteban Andrada (Boca Juniors), Franco Armani (River Plate), Agustin Marchesin (America de Mexico).
Defenders: Renzo Saravia (Racing), Nicolas Otamendi (Manchester City), Juan Foyth (Tottenham), German Pezzella (Fiorentina), Ramiro Funes Mori (Villarreal), Milton Casco (River Plate), Nicolas Tagliafico (Ajax), Marcos Acuna (Sporting Lisbon).
Midfielders: Rodrigo De Paul (Udinese), Leandro Paredes, Angel Di Maria (Paris Saint-Germain), Roberto Pereyra (Watford), Giovani Lo Celso (Real Betis), Guido Rodriguez (America de Mexico), Exequiel Palacios (River Plate).
Strikers: Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Sergio Aguero (Manchester City), Paulo Dybala (Juventus), Matias Suarez (River Plate), Lautaro Martínez (Inter Milan).
Madrid, May 22 (AP/UNB) — Atletico Madrid says Diego Costa sprained his left ankle in the team's 2-1 loss in a friendly against Beitar Jerusalem on Tuesday.
Costa left the field on a stretcher in the first half of the match in Jerusalem, which marked his return to the squad after missing the final part of the season because of a suspension.
Atletico says initial tests showed no bone damage in the striker's ankle. More exams will be conducted after the team returns to Madrid to assess any possible ligament damage.
The setback was the latest for Costa in a season marred by injuries and lackluster performances.
Atletico's goal in the friendly was scored by Antoine Griezmann in his last match with the Spanish club. The France forward has decided to leave Atletico but is yet to announce his new club for next season.
May 22 (AP/UNB) -The choice of Baku as host of the Europa League final provided Arsenal with further grounds for discontent Tuesday when one of the team's most talented players pulled out of the game for political reasons.
After holding lengthy talks with Arsenal, Henrikh Mkhitaryan said he would not be traveling to Azerbaijan for next week's final because of concerns about the tension that currently exists between the country and his native Armenia.
"It's the kind of game that doesn't come along very often for us players," Mkhitaryan said on his social media channels, "and I must admit, it hurts me a lot to miss it."
UEFA, European soccer's governing body which organizes the Europa League, reacted by saying it had received assurances about Mkhitaryan's safety in Azerbaijan "from the highest authorities in the country" and that a "comprehensive security plan" had been given to Arsenal.
And the Azerbaijan government had previously said it would allow Mkhitaryan to play in the May 29 final against Chelsea.
The Association of Football Federations of Azerbaijan called it an "unwarranted decision" by Mkhitaryan and Arsenal, saying there was "no reason whatsoever to put in question the seriousness of these guarantees provided by Azerbaijan."
Nagorno-Karabakh is a region of Azerbaijan which has been under the control of ethnic Armenian forces backed by Armenia since a war there ended in 1994. Some neighboring districts are also under the control of those ethnic Armenian forces. International efforts to settle the conflict have stalled.
"We at all times put the sport as something very separate from these political issues and of course the same issue is again with Mkhitaryan," Azerbaijan Sports Minister Azad Rahimov said last week.
Arsenal has already criticized the decision to give Baku the final, having received — like Chelsea — only 6,000 tickets by UEFA and because of what the club says are "extreme" problems that fans face just getting to the match.
There are relatively few flights to Baku from Western Europe, though more are being operated for the final, and prices are far above usual levels.
Arsenal said in a statement it has "written to UEFA expressing our deep concerns about this situation" involving Mkhitaryan, who has missed previous group games in Azerbaijan for both Arsenal and former club Borussia Dortmund.
"Micki has been a key player in our run to the final," Arsenal said, "so this is a big loss for us from a team perspective."
The Armenian Foreign Ministry accused Azerbaijan of failing to guarantee Mkhitaryan's safety.
"If there were sufficient guarantees of security from the Azerbaijani side to satisfy both Henrikh Mkhitaryan and his team, then the Armenian Foreign Ministry does not see problems with Mkhitaryan playing in Baku," the ministry said.
After Mkhitaryan said he wouldn't travel, Azerbaijan's foreign ministry said it had assured his safety, and accused Armenia of manipulating the situation.
"The Armenian Foreign Ministry statement that player of Armenian heritage at the Arsenal football club will not come to Baku is evidence of an attempt to turn sport into a political instrument because of internal political problems in Armenia," ministry spokeswoman Leyla Abdullayeva said.
Mkhitaryan wouldn't have been a guaranteed starter for Arsenal manager Unai Emery, who often plays only one of his playmakers — Mesut Ozil and Mkhitaryan — each match. Mkhitaryan didn't start, for example, either of the quarterfinal matches against Napoli or either of the semifinal legs against Valencia.
He is dangerous player to come off the bench, though, with his vision and creative ability.
Arsenal will be playing its first European final in 13 years and looking to win its first continental trophy since the 1994 European Cup Winners' Cup. The game has even greater importance because Arsenal needs to win to secure qualification to the Champions League after missing out on a top-four finish in the Premier League.
Tensions between Azerbaijan and Armenia have spilled into European soccer tournaments since the neighbouring nations were drawn together in a qualifying group for the 2008 European Championship.
Both games were eventually cancelled, after Azerbaijan refused to host Armenia and no agreement could be reached on neutral venues.
UEFA has since separated the countries in its competition draws ensuring that their national and club teams do not play each other.
Baku won the Europa League final hosting rights in a bidding contest that originally included Seville, Spain, and Istanbul. Seville was excluded because Madrid was awarded the Champions League final, which will be played on June 1.
UEFA evaluated each bidder, though a subsequent report did not mention the Armenia issue in a section analyzing security issues for Baku.
Arsenal's then-chief executive, Ivan Gazidis, was on the UEFA executive committee when Baku was chosen as Europa League host in September 2017. Mkhitaryan was then with Manchester United, playing in the Champions League, and joined Arsenal the following January.
May 22 (AP/UNB) - Responding to criticism after some fans buying tickets for the Women's World Cup were not given seats together, FIFA said it was working toward a solution with the local organizing committee in France.
Tickets were made available for printing Monday and ticket holders learned their seats were sometimes split up in separate rows and different sections — even couples and families with children were separated. The backlash on social media was swift.
On Tuesday, FIFA posted a statement to its website explaining that high demand for some matches, including the semifinal and final in Lyon, meant only single seats were available. FIFA also said that it estimates only a small number of fans are affected.
"FIFA and the Local Organizing Committee are continuing to work towards finding the best solution for all fans attending the FIFA Women's World Cup and, in particular, are doing everything they can to ensure that families will always be seated together at each and every match," the statement said, referencing a phone number and email for inquiries.
The tournament starts June 7 and runs through July 7. The situation could cause problems in the stadiums before games, when fans may try to swap seats to sit next to friends or family members.
FIFA's website included a disclaimer that the local organizing committee has assigned the French firm APS2 to handle online ticket sales. AP2S did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment.