Benfica, PSV & Red Star enter group stage
LONDON • Benfica, PSV Eindhoven and Red Star Belgrade all booked Champions League group berths on Wednesday.
Portuguese club Benfica, winners in 1961 and 1962, beat Greece's Paok Salonika after a 5-2 aggregate win.
Dutch side PSV, top dogs in 1988, knocked out Belarus' Bate Borisov with a 6-2 aggregate win, while 1991 champions Red Star from Serbia advanced on away goals after the score had ended 2-2.
Top US goalscorer hangs up his boots
LOS ANGELES • Former Fulham and Tottenham Hotspur forward Clint Dempsey announced his retirement on Wednesday, ending a 15-year career that included three World Cup appearances as he became the United States' joint-record goalscorer.
The 35-year-old, who scored 57 goals in 141 games for the US, said in a statement that the time was right to draw a line under his playing days.
Real Madrid buy Diaz back from Lyon
MADRID • Real Madrid have re-signed forward Mariano Diaz from French Ligue One side Lyon on a five-year contract, the Spanish football club said on Wednesday.
The 25-year-old, who came through Real's academy, netted 21 goals in all competitions last term for Lyon, which prompted Real to trigger their buy-back clause. Lyon said the deal was worth about €33 million (S$52.7 million).
Shaw and Lallana recalled for friendlies
LONDON • England manager Gareth Southgate yesterday named Manchester United defender Luke Shaw and Liverpool midfielder Adam Lallana in his squad for the friendlies with Spain (Sept 8) and Switzerland (Sept 11).
Left-back Shaw, who last played for the Three Lions in March last year, comes in at the expense of United team-mate Ashley Young and there are also returns at the back for Liverpool's Joe Gomez and James Tarkowski of Burnley.
Lallana is back having missed the World Cup after an injury-hit season, while Southampton goalkeeper Alex McCarthy - who has been called up twice but never capped - replaces the injured Nick Pope as back-up goalkeeper.