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UCL: Barcelona Drop To Europa League After Bayern Defeat

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UCL: Barcelona Drop To Europa League After Bayern Defeat

Barcelona manager Xavi has expressed disappointment in Wednesday’s 3-0 defeat to Bayern Munich that sent them to the Europa League – a competition in which he thinks his side don’t belong.

But Xavi also accepted Barca’s new reality and said that the club must “start again from zero” amid their most difficult campaign in recent history.

The last time Barcelona were ousted from the Champions League this early was 2000-01, when the Europa League was still known as the UEFA Cup.

“They were better than us,” Xavi said of Bayern Munich to Movistar. “This is the reality that now faces us. We’re in the Europa League. A new era starts today.

“Barcelona don’t belong in the Europa League, they belong in the Champions League. We start again from zero.”

With a Benfica win over Dynamo Kyiv, Barcelona needed a victory of their own against Bayern Munich in order to advance to the knockout stage.

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Xavi: Barcelona don't belong in Europa League | Goal.com

But against a full-strength Bavarian side that had beaten them 3-0 in their prior meeting, that proved too tall of an order.

While the result on Wednesday was hardly a surprise given the way the rest of the season has gone, it has still provided another marker of the Blaugrana’s fall this year.

Their tally of two goals after their six group-stage matches was their lowest recorded total in the Champions League, and only in 1997-98 did they concede more than the nine they surrendered in the competition this season.

Attention now fully turns to La Liga, where they are in seventh place.

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Statue Of Kobe Bryant And Daughter Gianna Erected At Crash Site On 2-Year Anniversary Of Death

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Statue Of Kobe Bryant And Daughter Gianna Erected At Crash Site On 2-Year Anniversary Of Death

On Jan. 26, a statue honoring Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna was placed on the site of the helicopter crash in Calabasas, Calif., two years to the day of their tragic deaths.

Created by sculptor Dan Medina, the figure shows the beloved Lakers player, clad in his uniform, with his arm around his 13-yea-old daughter as holds a basketball. The two are depicted with big smiles across their faces.

At the base of the 160-pound bronze statue is the quote, “Heroes come and go, but legends are forever,” along with the names of all nine victims who perished in the 2020 accident, according to TMZ.

Medina told TMZ Sports that the statue was just a temporary tribute and said he planned to take it down by sundown. He did say, however, that he hopes the city will eventually allow him to put up a more permanent version of his art.

Kobe and Gianna were killed when their private helicopter crashed while they were traveling to a teen basketball tournament at Kobe’s Mamba Sports Academy near Thousand Oaks, Ca

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Seven others died in the crash, as well: John Altobelli, a baseball coach at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa; his wife, Keri Altobelli; their daughter, Alyssa AltobelliChristina Mauser, an assistant Mamba Sports Academy basketball coach; Payton Chester, a player on the team; her mother, Sarah Chester; and Ara Zobayan, the pilot.

Four months after the crash, the Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner determined the cause of death for all of the passengers to be blunt trauma and the manner of death was accidental. Investigators later determined the pilot of the helicopter appeared to violate federal standards and likely experienced “spatial disorientation” while flying through clouds on the foggy morning.

In addition to Gianna Kobe and wife Vanessa Bryant have three other daughters—Natalia, now 19; Bianka, now 5; and Capri, now 2.

 

 

 

 

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Anthony Martial: Man United ‘Flop’ Joins Sevilla On Loan

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Anthony Martial: Man United 'Flop' Joins Sevilla On Loan

Sevilla have completed the signing of Anthony Martial on loan from Manchester United.

The 26-year-old joins the La Liga side – who will pay his wages in full – until the end of the season. There is no loan fee involved.

Martial flew from Paris to Seville on Tuesday to undergo a medical.

The forward always wanted to join Sevilla this month, despite interest from Juventus and Barcelona, because he believes that is where he will play the most.

Martial became the world’s most expensive teenager when he joined United from Monaco in 2015 and went on to score 79 times in 269 appearances for the club.

But he fell out of favour in the forward positions following the signings of Cristiano Ronaldo and Jadon Sancho in the summer, as well as the emergence of Mason Greenwood.

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Martial has started just four games for United this season, and was accused by Ralf Rangnick, the club’s interim manager, of asking not to play in the 2-2 draw at Aston Villa on January 15.

The France international refuted his manager’s claim, and Rangnick later insisted the situation was “resolved”.

Following Saturday’s 2-2 draw at home to Celta Vigo, Sevilla are second in La Liga and just four points behind Real Madrid as they search for their first title since 1946.

 

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Robinho Re-sentenced To Nine Years In Jail For Gang Rape

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Robinho Re-sentenced To Nine Years In Jail For Gang Rape

Former Real Madrid and Manchester City star Robinho has been sentenced to nine years in prison for rape.

The Court of Cassation in Rome rejected an appeal from the former Brazil international and Ricardo Falco – a friend of the former player – relating to the incident, which occurred in 2013.

Robinho was convicted of rape in 2017 with a nine-year jail sentence handed down by the courts but his appeal process with the Italian courts has been ongoing in the years since.

The former player continually rejected claims that he took part in a gang rape of a 22-year-old Albanian woman at the Sio Cafe nightclub in Milan in January 2013.

The latest decision from the court in Rome is a final sentence with no room for further appeals with the sentence to begin immediately.

With the conviction, the Italian justice system can request the extradition of both Robinho and Falco, although the Brazilian constitution vetoes the extradition of Brazilians.

Italian court upholds Robinho's nine-year rape sentence - Punch Newspapers

Due to this situation, Italy will be able to request that both men serve their sentences in a Brazilian jail.

Italy must now request the transfer of execution of the sentence to the Brazilian justice system and wait for the Superior Court of Justice to ratify the sentence.

Four other Brazilians were denounced for having participated in the act, but as they had already left Italy in the course of the investigations, they were not notified of the conclusion of the investigations and therefore were not prosecuted – their cases have been suspended but may be reopened.

In October 2020, Brazilian outlet UOL reported that the sentence has been upheld by the Italian Court of Appeal after the judge dismissed an appeal from the defence which attempted to disqualify the victim on account of photos of her drinking alcohol on the night of the incident.

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At that time, Brazil’s Minister of Women, Family and Human Rights, Damares Alves, told reporters: “Prison immediately, I have no more to say.

“There is still an appeal, but…What more do you want? Prison. No rapist can be applauded.”

Robinho To Serve Nine Years For 2013 Sexual Assault Case In Milan

Robinho a player for Milan at the time of the incident, and it was ruled that he and five other Brazilian men raped the woman after plying her with alcohol in a discotheque in the Italian city.

In 2017 as part of the judgement, the court ordered the victim to receive €60,000 (£53,431.02) as compensation for her suffering.

Robinho, now aged 37, played for Milan between 2010-2015 and continued his playing career up until 2020 – three years after he was initially convicted, pending the subsequent appeal process which has now concluded.

The Brazilian played for Chinese club Guangzhou Evergrande in 2015 before spending two years at Brazilian club Atletico Mineiro, whom he represented at the time of the initial sentence.

He would go on to spend four years in Turkish football across spells with Sivasspor and Istanbul Basaksehir before returning to Brazil in 2020 to sign for Santos – where he had begun his career.

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