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Brendan Rodgers ends Arsenal rumour, signs new five-year deal with Leicester city

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Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers has signed a new five-and-a-half-year contract with the club, putting paid to rumour linking him with a move to Arsenal.

The former Liverpool and Celtic manager was on Arsenal’s shortlist after sacking Unai Emery last week despite insisting he was “very happy” at Leicester, who sit second in the Premier League.

Rodgers’ previous contract was due to expire in 2022, but his suggestion that deal contained a release clause had fuelled talk of a move away from the King Power Stadium.

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He says talks over a new Leicester deal had been ongoing for weeks before Emery left Arsenal.

When I made the decision to come to Leicester City, it was because I was excited about the direction the club was taking and how I could apply my experience to the journey,” said Rodgers, who took over in February this year.

“I came here with a purpose to add something to that and to help the club build for the future.”

Rodgers, 46, had also been considered as a potential target to replace Mauricio Pochettino at Tottenham before Jose Mourinho was appointed.

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Leicester City chairman Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha said Rodgers’ qualities were “well known”.

But just as important to us is the suitability of Brendan’s wider philosophy to the club’s established culture and values,” he said.

“He and his staff immersed themselves immediately, building an understanding for the Club and the city and an appreciation for what makes them special.”

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Barcelona defender, Umtiti, tests positive for COVID-19

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Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti has tested positive for coronavirus, the club confirmed on Friday.

Umtiti, 26, is currently recovering from his latest injury setback after once more suffering discomfort in his left knee, which has kept him out of action since July.

And he has now joined fellow defender jean-Clair Todibo in catching the virus,  although without showing any symptoms or health problems.

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Dutch boss Wiegmann to replace Neville as England coach

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Sarina Wiegman is to replace Phil Neville as head coach of the England women’s football team next year, the Football Association announced on Friday.

The 50-year-old Dutch woman will take charge of the Netherlands in next year’s Olympics before assuming control of England.

The former Dutch international defender will be in charge when England hosts the 2022 Euros, the 2023 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand and the following Euros in 2025.

Wiegman was the FA’s preferred choice ahead of reportedly two-time World Cup-winning former USA coach Jill Ellis.

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Ellis’s second World Cup triumph came at the expense of Wiegman’s Dutch side last year.

“I’m delighted and honored to join England Women next year,” Wiegman said in a statement.

“England is the cradle of football and the major developments in women’s football globally over recent years have been led by the FA.

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“I’m very much looking forward to contributing my experience and expertise to this ambitious team.”

Under Wiegman, Holland won the 2017 European Championship as hosts

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Matuidi joins Beckham’s Inter Miami

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France’s World Cup winner Blaise Matuidi will join David Beckham’s Major League Soccer club Inter Miami, the American club announced Thursday.

Matuidi, 33, has left Italian champion Juventus by mutual consent after three years, for the club co-owned by Beckham, his former Paris Saint-Germain teammate.

Matuidi joined the Turin giant from PSG in 2017 and had one year left on his contract.

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The move comes less than a year before the European football championship, postponed this summer because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Matudi played in the 2018 World Cup final when France beat Croatia 4-2.

Matuidi won three Serie A titles, one Italian Cup and the Italian Super Cup at Juve, where he played 133 games in all competition.

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He helped the club to a ninth Serie A title in a row this season, but the Italian giant crashed out of the Champions League in the last 16.

He also won four Ligue 1 titles during six years at PSG, having previously played for French clubs Troyes and Saint Etienne.

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