Saturday, December 9, 2023


Freiburg’s Win Over Wolfsburg Boosts Champions League Qualification Chances

FREIBURG, Germany: With a slice of luck and a goal from a retiring fan favorite, Freiburg beat Wolfsburg 2-0 in the Bundesliga on Friday to stay in contention to qualify for the Champions League for the first time. Playing his last home game before retiring at the end of the season, striker Nils Petersen came off the bench to score in the 75th minute to take the game away from Wolfsburg — his first goal of the season — after Christian Günter gave Freiburg the lead with a fortunate deflected shot that looped over the goalkeeper.

“Al-Rajhi and Gottschalk Dominate Day One of Tabuk-NEOM Rally”

TABUK: Saudi Arabia’s Yazeed Al-Rajhi and German co-driver Timo Gottschalk stormed into a comfortable 19 min 28 sec lead after the opening 205 km stage of the Tabuk-Neom Rally on Friday. The Toyota Hilux crew carded a time of 1 hr 58 min and 57 sec for the scenic passage through desert terrain without hitting any problems during the course of the morning.

Newcastle close to Champions League, but Eddie Howe stays cautious.

NEWCASTLE: Newcastle United head coach Eddie Howe still refuses to admit the job of Champions League qualification is done, despite the Magpies taking a giant leap toward a top-four Premier League spot with a home victory against sixth-place Brighton & Hove Albion on Thursday. Howe’s side is within touching distance of a place of Europe’s premier club competition for the first time since the 2003/04 season thanks to a 4-1 win over their fellow high-fliers.

DeChambeau Takes Lead at PGA Championship for LIV Golf

ROCHESTER, New York: Bryson DeChambeau delivered a credibility boost to LIV Golf, firing a 4-under par 66 to seize a one-stroke lead in Thursday’s opening round of the PGA Championship. The slimmed-down 2020 US Open champion, coming off 2022 left wrist surgery, struck a competitor with an errant shot but managed six birdies against two bogeys to stand atop the field at formidable Oak Hill. “I hit my putts really well and drove it nicely,” DeChambeau said. “I faced some tough challenges and was able to execute the way I wanted to and, man, it feels really good.”

Nuggets beat Lakers 108-103 with Murray’s big fourth quarter, take 2-0 lead in West finals

DENVER: Jamal Murray scored 23 of his 37 points in the fourth quarter, propelling the Denver Nuggets to a 108-103 come-from-behind win over the Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday night for a 2-0 lead in the Western Conference finals. Nikola Jokic had his 13th playoff triple-double with 23 points, 17 rebounds and a dozen assists for the Nuggets, who have never been this close to reaching the NBA Finals in their history. Game 3 is Saturday night at Arena, where LeBron James and the Lakers are 8-0 in the playoffs.

Sevilla beats Juventus, advances to Europa League final with Lamela’s help.

SEVILLE, SPAIN: Erik Lamela propelled Europa League specialists Sevilla into the final once again with a 2-1 victory over Juventus on Thursday, sealing a 3-2 aggregate triumph in a gripping clash. Lamela headed home in extra-time to complete an impressive comeback for the record six-time winners of the competition, who will face Jose Mourinho’s Roma in Budapest on May 31 after they edged past Bayer Leverkusen.

Klopp gets 2-match ban for doubting referee’s integrity.

LIVERPOOL, England: Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was handed a two-match ban on Thursday for questioning the integrity of a Premier League referee, with his poor disciplinary record and failure to heed previous conduct warnings counting against him. Klopp, who was also fined 75,000 pounds ($93,000), will not be in the technical area for Liverpool’s next-to-last game of the season — at home to Aston Villa on Saturday — but the second match of his punishment has been suspended until the end of next season.

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