Arsenal, Everton face challenging tests
MONACO • Arsenal face a tricky Europa League group stage with ties against Cologne and Red Star Belgrade as the English football side play in Europe's second-tier competition for the first time since 1997.
The Gunners were also paired with Belarus' Bate Borisov, while Wayne Rooney's Everton have a stern test in a group comprising French club Lyon, who host the final on May 16, Atalanta and Apollon Limassol.
Veteran Villa returns to Spain squad
MADRID • David Villa is set for a surprise return to international football after he was called up to the Spain squad for the first time since the 2014 World Cup to play in their upcoming World Cup qualifiers.
The 35-year-old striker has been in prolific form for New York City this season. He has scored 19 goals in 24 MLS (Major League Soccer) games, making him the league's top scorer.
All Blacks not underrating Wallabies
DUNEDIN • The All Blacks insisted they were under "massive" pressure in today's rugby Test against Australia, despite thrashing them last week - and said they rate the trans-Tasman Bledisloe Cup second only to the World Cup.
New Zealand are favourites to clinch the Cup for the 15th consecutive year, after they opened the three-Test series by beating the Wallabies 54-34 in Sydney last week.
Ginobili re-signs for 16th Spurs term
NEW YORK • Manu Ginobili re-signed with the San Antonio Spurs on Thursday and it appears he will become the eighth player to spend his entire career with one team and play at least 16 NBA (National Basketball Association) seasons.
The club did not announce the terms of the deal but Ginobili reportedly was re-signed to a two-year deal worth US$5 million (S$6.8 million).