World Sports News in Brief

Virgil van Dijk wins UEFA Men's Player of the Year award

Friday, 2019-08-30 06:41:25
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Virgil Van Dijk of Liverpool poses with the UEFA Champions League Defender of the Season 2018/19 and UEFA Men's Player of the Year 2018/19 Awards following the UEFA Champions League Draw. (Photo: Getty Images)
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Liverpool's Dutch defender Virgil van Dijk has been named UEFA Men's Player of the Year for 2018-2019, the European football governing body announced on Thursday.

The Dutch international won the award by beating off competition from three-time UEFA Men's Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo and two-time winner Lionel Messi. The 28-year-old centre-back received the trophy on stage in Monaco during the UEFA Champions League group stage draw.

* Formula One will have a record 22 races next season, a draft of the 2020 calendar released by the sport's US-based commercial rights holders Liberty Media confirmed on Thursday. The season will kick off with the traditional start-of-term Australian Grand Prix on March 15 and finish in Abu Dhabi on Nov. 29. Vietnam will host its first race through the streets of capital Hanoi on April 5.

* Jesus Herrada rode to victory on stage six of the Vuelta a Espana as Dylan Teuns claimed the leader's jersey after finishing second. The 199km hilly stage from Mora de Rubielos to Ares del Maestrat featured four climbs and culminated at the summit of the Puerto de Ares in Castellon, where Herrada strode away from Teuns with 150 metres remaining.

* Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski signed a two-year contract extension on Thursday that will keep him with the German champions until 2023. The Poland forward, who has netted all five of Bayern's league goals this season, has scored 197 goals in 246 matches in all competitions since joining from Borussia Dortmund in 2014.

* France manager Didier Deschamps has called up Manchester City defender Aymeric Laporte and Lille forward Jonathan Ikone who could both make their debuts in the upcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers against Albania and Andorra next month. Laporte, 25, has been named on the bench for France before but has yet to make an appearance for the world champions while it is a first call-up for 21-year-old Ikone who has been named in the squad as a replacement for the injured Kylian Mbappe.

* Ko Jin-young's stretch of consecutive holes without dropping a shot ended after 114 holes when she had a bogey during the opening round at the Portland Classic in Oregon on Thursday. Ko's mind-boggling run finished in surprising fashion when she missed a three-foot par at the ninth hole at Columbia Edgewater Country Club in Oregon.

* A tired Andy Murray was dumped out in the third round of the Rafa Nadal Open in Majorca after losing 3-6 6-4 7-6 (3) to Italian world number 240 Matteo Viola on Thursday. Briton Murray required two medical stoppages for cramp and received treatment to his thigh as he battled with his fitness and form at the Challenger Tour tournament having receiving a wildcard entry.

* World champion Karsten Warholm ran the second-fastest time in history when he held off a late challenge from American champion Rai Benjamin to clinch the men's 400 metres hurdles at the Diamond League finals on Thursday. Running in lane seven, Norwegian Warholm was fractionally ahead off the final bend and fended off Benjamin's challenge to win in 46.92 seconds, six hundredths of a second ahead of his rival. Benjamin appeared to be gaining near the finish line before Warholm found an extra gear and pulled away again to win in a time 0.14 seconds outside American Kevin Young's world record of 46.78 set in 1992.

* Manchester United's Chile forward Alexis Sanchez has joined Inter Milan on a season-long loan, the clubs said on Thursday. The deal runs until June 30, 2020 and comes after a disappointing spell for the 30-year-old at Old Trafford.

Valtteri Bottas will stay at Mercedes for another year, the Formula One champions said on Thursday. The 30-year-old Finn, who joined the team in 2017 after Nico Rosberg’s sudden retirement, was confirmed ahead of the Belgian Grand Prix as Formula One returned from its summer break on Thursday.

* Portugal gave a surprise recall to Renato Sanches, the Euro 2016 winner whose career has since nosedived, as they named their squad for next month's Euro 2020 qualifiers on Thursday.

* England manager Gareth Southgate has called up four uncapped players into his squad for September's Euro 2020 qualifiers against Bulgaria and Kosovo. Manchester United right back Aaron Wan-Bissaka, centre half Tyrone Mings of Aston Villa and midfielders James Maddison of Leicester City and Chelsea's Mason Mount all have a chance of making their debuts.

* Southampton will be without key players Nathan Redmond, Moussa Djenepo and Michael Obafemi after the trio suffered injuries in their 1-0 League Cup win over Fulham, manager Ralph Hasenhuettl said on Thursday.

* Midfielder Toni Kroos was named in the Germany squad on Thursday for their upcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers against the Netherlands and Northern Ireland, with Emre Can and goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen also making a return to the national team.

* Ten-man Eintracht Frankfurt turned around a 1-0 first leg defeat after beating 10-man Strasbourg 3-0 in the second leg of Europa League's playoffs on Thursday. The Europa League group stage draw, with 48 clubs to be divided into 12 groups, will be held in Monaco on Friday.

Reuters, Xinhua