Officials cancel pipe qualifying, then reverse

Adjustments Made right after Halfpipe Complaints KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia — All the talk of a low quality halfpipe didn’t stop Shaun White from opening their Olympics with a huge rating.


France Has Already Given Up Hope on Its National Team Qualifying for the World Cup

Ukraine v France - FIFA 2014 World Cup Qualifier: Play-off First Leg

Being a soccer fan in America, particularly the U.S. Nationwide Workforce, typically can morph into a examine about wishing you were something else. Granted, that mentality has modified a lot in recent times. Given the success in 2013 underneath Jurgen Klinsmann, it’s mostly optimistic vibes emanating out of the U.S. camp. There’s additionally a sure satisfaction exhibited by fans of the National Workforce. Thank supporters teams like the American Outlaws for turning National Staff video games on U.S. soil into happenings.

Still, for years many American fans spent their time pining for the USMNT to be some type of world-beating superteam, which played all its games on hallowed European grounds like Wembley Stadium, the San Siro and the Stade de France.

In the mean time, it’s doubtful many U.S. followers would wish to trade locations with the team which calls the Stade de France residence. The French National Team — Les Bleus — face long odds to qualify for the 2014 World Cup after it lost 2-0 last week within the first leg of its World Cup playoff with Ukraine. Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny was sent off with a purple card.

It was ugly, so ugly that eighty four p.c of the French public thinks the staff doesn’t have a shot to qualify even with ninety more minutes left to play on Tuesday. American soccer fans will be cynical, however they’re not that cynical.

One thing American soccer fans love to complain about is the dearth of U.S. players on the rosters of “large golf equipment” or gamers within the Champions League. Look at France. Those qualifications haven’t proved to be a magic treatment-all. Les Bleus have the presumptive Ballon d’Or winner in Franck Ribery of Bayern Munich. Past that they have players on the world’s greatest golf equipment like striker Karim Benzema at Actual Madrid and midfielder Samir Nasri at Manchester City. Most Premier League golf equipment this season have a France international or two on their rosters, too.

[ASSOCIATED: Qatar’s World Cup Stadiums Resemble A part of the Feminine Anatomy, and Are Being Constructed by Fashionable-Day Slaves]

France has always been lauded for its youth development system. This summer it produced an U-20 World Cup victory in Turkey led by Juventus’ rising star Paul Pogba.

When you add it together, you’d assume France has the best recipe for worldwide success. But success has eluded Les Bleus since their runner-up showing on the 2006 World Cup. It’s no coincidence that’s the identical year Zinedine Zidane retired internationally. The next World Cup 4 years later in South Africa, the group famously quit on coach Raymond Domenech and embarrassed itself very publicly.

In equity, France received a tricky attract its qualifying group getting lumped with Spain. Solely one of many two conventional powers would automatically ebook a place for Brazil. Spain beat France in Paris back in March, sealing their destiny since La Roja completed three points ahead.

Now, because of a toothless displaying in Ukraine, France is at risk of lacking its first World Cup since 1994. There is actually some delight in this potential, particularly in Ireland which misplaced out to Les Bleus within the 2010 playoffs thanks in no small part to Thierry Henry’s handball which wasn’t called.

So for the contingent of American followers all the time hoping and wishing for more out of the Nationwide Team, remember it could at all times be quite a bit worse. Simply ask France.


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Reports: McCann, Cruz to reject qualifying offers

Nelson Cruz will net the Rangers a high draft pick if he signs elsewhere.
Nelson Cruz will internet the Rangers a excessive draft pick if he indicators elsewhere. (USATSI)

The deadline for gamers to accept or reject the one-yr, $14.1 million qualifying offer is 5pm ET on Monday afternoon. Gamers who reject the supply will web their former workforce a supplemental first spherical draft pick as compensation if they signal a Major League contract with one other workforce. Teams who sign those gamers will have to forfeit a high draft decide.

A complete of 13 players received qualifying provides previous to last Monday’s deadline. We’ll keep tabs on their choices throughout the day right right here, so test back often.

Carlos Beltran, Cardinals
Robinson Cano, Yankees
Shin-Soo Choo, Reds
Nelson Cruz, Rangers – Has informed group he’ll reject. (Fort Worth Star-Telegram)
Stephen Drew, Purple Sox
Jacoby Ellsbury, Red Sox
Curtis Granderson, Yankees
Ubaldo Jimenez, Indians
Hiroki Kuroda, Yankees
Brian McCann, Braves – Will reject. (
Kendrys Morales, Mariners
Mike Napoli, Pink Sox
Ervin Santana, Royals – Has rejected. (Fox Sports)

For a whole record of all free brokers – including the one hundred fifty or so players who didn’t receive qualifying provides – try our free agent tracker, which will likely be updated throughout the offseason: FA tracker: Position gamers | FA tracker: Pitchers.

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Yankees’ Granderson leads MLB qualifying offers

Curtis Granderson has been extended a qualifying offer.
Curtis Granderson has been prolonged a qualifying offer. (USATSI)

Monday at 5 p.m. ET was the deadline for teams to tender a qualifying provide to free-brokers-to-be with no less than six years of major-league service time.

The gamers who did receive a proposal have exactly one week to both settle for or decline the qualifying offer, which is a one-yr deal price $14.1 million. For the large names like Robinson Cano and Jacoby Ellsbury, they’ll obviously decline the supply, but it surely’s essential that their present groups make the provide, as a result of there is draft choose compensation tied to the offer.

Groups signing players who determined to not settle for a qualifying provide will forfeit their first round draft choose in next June’s beginner draft. The first 10 picks are protected, nevertheless, so the Astros, Marlins, White Sox, Cubs, Twins, Mariners, Phillies, Rockies, Blue Jays and Mets would forfeit a second rounder – not a primary – ought to they signal a player who refused a qualifying provide. Teams who lose a free agent to a different staff after making a qualifying supply receive as compensation a supplemental draft choose between the first and second rounds.

In all, 13 gamers obtained qualifying affords prior to Monday’s deadline. Here is the complete list:

Qualifying provide extended:

Carlos Beltran, Cardinals
Robinson Cano, Yankees
Shin-Soo Choo, Reds
Nelson Cruz, Rangers
Stephen Drew, Red Sox
Jacoby Ellsbury, Crimson Sox
Curtis Granderson, Yankees
Ubaldo Jimenez, Indians
Hiroki Kuroda, Yankees
Brian McCann, Braves
Kendrys Morales, Mariners
Mike Napoli, Purple Sox
Ervin Santana, Royals

For an entire checklist of all free agents – together with the one hundred fifty or so players who didn’t receive qualifying gives – try our free agent tracker, which might be up to date throughout the offseason: FA tracker: Position gamers | FA tracker: Pitchers.

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic warns Cristiano Ronaldo ahead of World Cup qualifying playoff


Hiya, Cristiano. I’m Zlatan — the cloud of pain that now hovers over you.

I must admit that the World Cup playoff draw was unfortunate. I do know that many individuals don’t like you, but I by no means felt that means. I’ve always seen you as a weaker, lavender scented model of Zlatan. A flattering Zlimitator. We each score goals at will and our presents are unappreciated in Barcelona. You’ve got boots with stars on them, I’ve boots full of ft that are more highly effective than the sun. After all, I’m higher trying, have higher hair and I’m way more skilled in deadly martial arts than you, but all of this offers you one thing to aspire to. You are welcome.

Since there will not be eleven Zlatans taking part in for Sweden, I cannot assure you will lose. What I can assure is that it’s in your finest interest to do so. Sweden did not qualify for the 2010 World Cup. This was deeply unZlatisfactory to me. If it happens again, I can be pressured to seek vengeance in ways that can make you wish you had been attending an awards ceremony the place Lionel Messi beats you in each category while your abs slowly morph right into a beer stomach. This is not a risk. Zlatan doesn’t make threats. I make predictions that happen.

The World Cup needs Zlatan. Who else could do a backheel so Zlectacular that it makes the FIFA executives heads explode like Mario Balotelli’s bathroom and convinces all of Brazil that internet hosting the event wasn’t such a waste of cash in any case? Who else would put Xavi in a cat provider and ship him to Tahiti when he decides to be the Goldilocks of groundskeeping and complains about a pitch being too dry or too moist for Spain? Who else would provide Pep Guardiola with an all bills paid journey to Brazil to watch the match just to make him sit between Pele and Maradona whereas they bicker endlessly about whether Justin Bieber is healthier than One Course? The answer is no one Zlelse.

I would want you good luck, Cristiano, however after reading all of this you shouldn’t need it. For those who suppose Pepe can protect you from the wrath of Zlatan, then you may be mistaken and he will be crying.

Maybe when that is throughout we will be pals. I can show you the best way to kick Gareth Bale within the head and the way not to tweet about boys underwear competitions. That’s how Zlamicable I could be.

Till then, I’ll see you on the pitch and you will note me in your nightmares.

Flamingo dream kick!
Betfred Football

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England shock the world by qualifying for 2014 World Cup


England beat Poland 2-0 to seal their surprise qualification for the 2014 World Cup. It marks just the 14th World Cup qualification in the upstart workforce’s 141-yr historical past and brings an unexpected conclusion to another qualification cycle wrought with doubt, outrage and tragic hopelessness.

“I’ve been studying the papers and I employed my 15-yr-previous nephew to trace what people have been saying on social media since I took the job last 12 months,” England manager Roy Hodgson advised reporters. “I was convinced that we may do it. If the best football mind of our time, Harry Redknapp, didn’t have confidence in me then what likelihood did we have now? I can solely say that I’m as shocked as anyone that we’ve got certified for the World Cup after ending fifth at Euro 2012 and making it out of the group stage at each of the final four World Cups.”

England’s first aim towards Poland was scored in the forty first minute by Wayne Rooney, a man who has overcome a number of hair transplant surgical procedures and being pressured to gather an astronomical salary to play for a mid-desk club in the Premier League — a competition that only exists to develop expertise for Actual Madrid. A nervy 47 minutes later, the place it seemed certain England would lose though they had been profitable, captain Steven Gerrard overcame his crippling proximity to his private kryptonite, Frank Lampard, to finish Poland off with an 88th minute purpose. And all this while Joe Hart, a goalkeeper who was born without fingers and had the temerity to look in a jokey shampoo business, miraculously stored a clear sheet to preserve the two-0 win.

It’s being hailed as a victory for underdogs in every single place as England, who had been kindly allowed to win the World Cup only time they hosted the match in the almost fictitious yr of 1966, rose all the best way from first in Group H to winning it on the final day. Sources throughout the England crew have cited Tahiti’s appearance at last summer season’s Confederations Cup as a serious inspiration — saying that if a lovable group of amateurs from a small island can qualify for a FIFA tournament, why can’t a derided workforce of extravagantly paid professionals from a slightly larger island do it too?

Now that England have defied all odds and attempts to incite candy, interest-producing panic by qualifying for the World Cup, will followers be allowed to indulge within the entertainment of the state of affairs and dream of beating Spain and Brazil? Will they be scolded into expecting complete and total failure? Or will cheap expectations of aggressive performances from a group that’s neither great nor horrible somehow win out and lead to a nice experience? England are doomed. And they’re poised to win all of it!

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Full versions of all 16 ‘TUF’ qualifying bouts will be available on

Sarah Moras celebrates a win on “The Ultimate Fighter” (Getty Pictures)

UFC president Dana White said Friday that full, uncut and uncensored versions of the sixteen qualifying fights for Season 18 of “The Final Fighter” will probably be accessible beginning Saturday at three p.m. ET/12 p.m. PT on

In recent years, the UFC has brought in 32 fighters, who compete for sixteen spots on the regular cast of the lengthy-running actuality series. For the first time within the present’s history, men and women are competing this time and will practice collectively and dwell in the identical home collectively.

The coaches are UFC ladies’s bantamweight champion “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey and ex-Strikeforce champion Miesha “Cupcake” Tate.

“Fans have been asking to see all of the fights for a very long time, so we’ll put them up there,” White instructed Cagewriter.

The bouts is not going to be censored or edited in any approach, so the audio could include adult language and must be considered NSFW.


Kyle Busch leads Toyota 1-2-3 in Daytona qualifying

Your front row for Saturday night. (Getty)

Kyle Busch and Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Matt Kenseth will start on the front row for Saturday night’s Coke Zero 400 at Daytona.

Busch ran a lap of 193.723 MPH to beat Kenseth’s 193.299, and Clint Bowyer, another Toyota driver, will start third. The top eight drivers in the field broke the 193 MPH mark.

At Daytona in February, Busch and Kenseth were at the front of the field when they suffered engine issues within laps of each other. Kenseth was leading when his engine went sour on lap 148 and that malady handed the lead over to Busch, who promptly had engine woes just two laps later.

And the driver that qualified fourth? That’s none other than Kasey Kahne, who can’t seem to get much distance between himself and Busch at restrictor plate tracks. Kahne went spinning off of Busch’s bumper in the Daytona 500 and then crashed again at Talladega after contact from Busch. (Busch was collected in that accident.) The two drivers also finished 1-2 in the second Budweiser Duel qualifying race for the Daytona 500.

The Toyotas of Martin Truex Jr. and Michael Waltrip start fifth and seventh. Danica Patrick, the polesitter for the 500, will start 11th.

It’s Busch’s 13th career Sprint Cup Series pole and his first at a restrictor plate track. 43 cars are entered for the race so no driver failed to qualify.