Sport Soccer

Monday 20 January 2020

In brief: Balotelli leveller extends Inter lead

Inter Milan extended their lead at the top of the Serie A to nine points after being held to a 1-1 draw by 10-man Parma last night.

Valeri Bojinov put the hosts in front in the 54th minute before a dominant Nerazzurri levelled through substitute Mario Balotelli five minutes later.

Parma had to play with 10 men after Francesco Valiani was sent off with 18 minutes remaining for a second booking. But the defending champions were unable to make the most of their superiority and had to settle for a point.

Murphy latest Cork star to join Hoops

DANNY Murphy will today become the third player in as many weeks to join Shamrock Rovers from troubled Cork City after his contract on Leeside was cancelled mutually yesterday, WRITES NEIL AHERN.

The English-born left-back will sign for the Hoops on a two-year contract, following the same path as Dan Murray and Billy Dennehy.

Owner Tom Coughlan, meanwhile, was tight-lipped over the Cork's future, despite previous indications that a deal would be done by yesterday.

Elsewhere, Drogheda United manager Alan Mathews met with the remainder of his squad yesterday in a bid to secure their services on much-reduced contracts after the playing budget at the club was slashed just weeks before the beginning of the season.

Mathews was informed on Tuesday night that he would have a budget of roughly €215,000 -- or €5,350 a week -- for the season, much less than the figure of approximately €320,000 he was believed to have been promised prior to the New Year.

Shehata denied Nigeria top job

Egypt coach Hassan Shehata has withdrawn from the race to lead Nigeria at this summer's World Cup in South Africa after he was denied permission by his employers to fill the role on a short-term basis.

The 60-year-old was on a preferred list of candidates drawn up by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) following the dismissal of Shaibu Amodu last Friday.

Five other coaches are also amongst those targeted by the African country, with a special technical committee having already convened to narrow down that number to three.

Russia boss Guus Hiddink is reportedly the number one target, followed by current Bayern Munich boss Louis van Gaal. Also targeted are Englishman Peter Taylor, ex-Ghana coach Ratomir Dujkovic and Qatar chief Bruno Metsu.

But Shehata has now joined Van Gaal in declaring his non-interest, which comes after the Egyptian Football Association (EFA) pulled the plug on the move. (© The Times, London)

Irish Independent

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