Soccer Digest, January 8, 2013

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 08 January, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 07 April, 2014, 8:08pm


Saunders takes over from fired Solbakken at Wolves

Former Welsh international striker Dean Saunders has been confirmed as the new manager of struggling Championship side Wolves to replace the sacked Stale Solbakken. "I can confirm that Dean Saunders has agreed to take over as manager at Molineux," said Doncaster Rovers chief executive Gavin Baldwin. "We have agreed a good deal for Doncaster Rovers. Work has already started on trying to find a replacement for Dean and continue our push for promotion back to the Championship." Saunders, a former Aston Villa and Liverpool striker, has taken Doncaster to second place in the third-tier League One this season. Wolves are currently 18th in the Championship. AFP


Lyon crash out in penalty shootout with Epinal

Holders Lyon, currently flying high in Ligue 1, were sensationally knocked out in a penalty shootout with third division club Epinal. The round-of-64 match had ended 3-3 after extra-time, before keeper Olivier Robin helped Epinal win the shootout 4-2. "It's the best victory in my career be it as a player or coach," said coach Fabien Tissot. AFP


Boateng wrong to 'run away' over racist taunts, Blatter says

Fifa president Sepp Blatter says AC Milan midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng was wrong to walk off the pitch when he was targeted by racists, but added he backed the battle to beat the bigots. Boateng was subjected to racist taunts by Pro Patria fans during a friendly in Italy last Thursday and the German-born Ghanaian forward responded by kicking the ball at fans and then storming off the pitch in protest followed by his Milan teammates. "Walk off? No. I don't think that is the solution," Blatter said. "I don't think you can run away. This issue is a very touchy subject, but I repeat there is zero tolerance of racism in the stadium." AFP


Mikel dismisses fitness fear at Nigeria training camp

Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel has dismissed fears he is still injured and may not feature for Nigeria at this month's tournament. Mikel has not played in his English club's last three games after he suffered a knee injury against Norwich City. However he and teammate Victor Moses trained with the rest of the Nigeria squad at a training camp in Faro, Portugal, on Sunday. "I'm okay. I had a knock two weeks ago and was told to rest for some time, but now I am fit and I actually started training recently with the Chelsea first team," said Mikel. "So there should be no fears about any injury. I'm ready for the Nations Cup." The tournament starts in South Africa on January 19. AFP


Ghana drop Ayew after he misses training camp

Marseille winger Andre Ayew will not play at the tournament after being excluded from Ghana's squad by coach Kwesi Appiah for not reporting to a training camp to have an injury assessed. Appiah wanted Ayew, 23, one of the country's best players, to report to the pre-tournament camp in the United Arab Emirates by last Saturday. AP