Terry Glenn, former Patriots and Cowboys receiver, dies aged 43

Terry Glenn, the wide receiver who caught Tom Bradys first ever touchdown pass, has died at the age of 43

Terry Glenn, the broad receiver who caught Tom Brady’s first ever touchdown pass, has died at persons under the age of 43. According to the Dallas County medical examiner’s office Glenn was killed in a” suspected motor vehicle collision” in the early hours of Monday morning.

Glenn was the seventh overall pick in the 1996 NFL draft after a brilliant final year of college football at Ohio State. He played six seasons for the Patriots before to intervene in the Green Bay Packers in 2002, and expended the final years of his career with the Cowboys before retiring in 2007.

His 90 receptions for the Patriots in his first year in the league were a record for a rookie at the time and he was named to the Pro Bowl in 1999. However, his career in New England aimed on a sour note after an apprehend and a failed narcotic exam led to him being deactivated from the roster running up to the Patriots’ Super Bowl victory. He was resurrected at the Cowboys though and had more than 1,000 receiving yards in both of his two final full seasons.

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The former Patriots quarterback Drew Bledsoe paid tribute to his former team-mate Glenn on Monday.” Loved this man ,” wrote Bledsoe on Instagram.” My son asked me a decade ago who my favorite receiver ever was because he wanted that jersey for Christmas. He got a Terry Glenn jersey from Santa. TG overcame horrible adversity to become a really good man. May your soul rest in peace my friend .”

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Hope Solo accuses Sepp Blatter of sexual assault at awards ceremony

The USA goalkeeper Hope Solo has accused Sepp Blatter of sexually assaulting her moments before they went on stage together at the Ballon dOr awards ceremony in 2013

The former Fifa president Sepp Blatter has been accused by Hope Solo, the USA women’s football team goalkeeper, of having sexually assaulted her at Fifa’s Ballon d’Or awards ceremony in January 2013.

In an interview with the Portuguese newspaper Expresso, being published on Saturday, Solo, 36, claimed she” had Sepp Blatter grab my ass” at the glittering presentation of Fifa’s annual football awardings for achievement during 2012. Solo presented the Fifa women’s world player of the year awarding on stage alongside Blatter, to her colleague on the USA team that had won the gold medal at the London Olympics, the striker Abby Wambach.

Blatter, contacted via his spokesman, responded to Solo’s recollection by denying that the incident took place.” Such allegations is ridiculous ,” he said.

On the official Fifa film of the event, which was hosted by the Dutch football legend Ruud Gullit and the broadcaster Kay Murray, Solo was shown coming on to the stage with Blatter from behind a curtain at the back of the stage, to present the awarding to Wambach. Talking to Expresso about sexual harassment in general, which Solo says is “rampant” in athletic, she claimed Blatter grabbed her behind seconds before they both went on stage:” I had Sepp Blatter grab my ass ,” she said.” It was at the Ballon d’Or, right before I went on stage.[ Sex harassment] has been normalised .”

Expanding on the alleged incident on Friday, Solo told the Guardianthat she had to compose herself immediately afterwards to concentrate on attaining her speech and giving the presentation to Wambach.” I was in shock and completely thrown off ,” Solo said.” I had to quickly pull myself together to present my team-mate with the biggest awarding of her career and celebrate with her in that moment, so I completely changed my focus to Abby .”

Solo, the most capped goalkeeper in US football history with 202 appearances, including in the 2008 and 2012 Olympic- and 2015 World Cup-winning teams, spoke out last month about sexual harassment in athletic, following the revelations about the Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein. In an Instagram post Solo congratulated the women who had spoken out and wrote with the #MeToo hashtag:” For the past few days, I have been thinking about all the uncomfortable situations myself and/ or my team-mates have experienced throughout the years with trainers, doctors, coaches, executives and even team-mates. From inappropriate commentaries, unwanted advances and grabs of the ass to coach-and-fours and[ general managers] and even press officers speaking about players” tits’ and physical appearance, sexual harassment is rampant in the sports world. I always felt I’d’ handled it’ and stood up for myself in those situations, but there were never any consequences for the perpetrators. That needs to change. Silence will not change the world !”

Solo expanded on those statements to Expresso, when she appeared at the Web Summit event in Lisbon, to speak on a platform for equal pay and women’s equality.” For years, in the past, female players date and end up marriage their college coach-and-fours, which obviously a coach should not be doing, especially with a young player ,” she said.” I’ve seen it not just with coach-and-fours. I’ve seen it with trainers, doctors and our press officers … I’ve seen it amongst players in the locker room. It’s rampant.

” I’m actually very disappointed with the women who haven’t spoken about it in the sports world … I wish more women, particularly in football, would speak against it, about the experiences, because some of those people still work[ in football ].”

Asked why she had not spoken out about the Blatter incident before, Solo said she always tries to confront immediately people, including team-mates, when it happens. With Blatter, she said as it happened seconds before she went on stage, she was unable to confront him, did not have an opportunity to do so when they left the stage and has never seen him since.

Blatter, 81, won five elections as president of Fifa from 1998 until 2015, until he was banned by the organisation for ethics breaches relating to a 2m CHF payment made to the then Uefa president Michel Platini in 2011. Over his years he faced criticism for a series of sexist statements, including a suggestion in 2004 that female players could wear” tighter shorts” like” they do in volleyball” to stimulate the game more appealing to a male audience. In 2013, he called a female candidate for Fifa’s executive committee ” good, and good looking “. Days afterward, when congratulating the new female members of the executive committee, he said:” Are there ladies in the room? Say something! You are always speaking at home , now you can speak here .”

Solo has played for the US national squad since 2000, although she has not seemed since last year’s Olympics in Rio because of a shoulder injury and a six-month suspension imposed by the US soccer federation. She was banned after accusing the Swedish team of a defensive performance and referring to them as” a bunch of cowards” when they are beat USA in the quarter-finals, a comment she afterwards retracted and apologised for.

She told the Guardian she believes sexual harassment in athletic must be dealt with:” While in this instance it was Sepp Blatter, who was the most powerful human in football at the time, sexual harassment and inappropriate behaviours are rampant at every level in women’s athletic and it needs to stop .”

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NFL owner forced to apologize after comparing players to ‘inmates’

Houston Texans owned Bob McNair expresses his regret after stimulating provocative statement over player national anthem protests

Bob McNair, the Houston Texans owner, faced a growing backlash on Friday after saying ” we can’t have the inmates running the prison” in response to NFL players taking a knee during the United States national anthem. He later issued a public apology.

In a report on ESPN, McNair’s provocative statement at a session last week between owneds, squad executives and NFL commissioner Roger Goodell” stunned some in the room “.

” After the owners finished, Troy Vincent[ the NFL executive vice-president of football operations] stood up ,” the article added.” He was offended by McNair’s characterization of the players as’ inmates ‘. Vincent said that in all his years of playing in the NFL– during which, he said, he had been called every name in the book, including the N-word- he never felt like an’ inmate ‘.”

McNair reportedly apologized to Vincent afterwards” saying that he felt horrible and that his terms weren’t meant to be taken literally “.

In an official statement, McNair said:” I regret that I employed that expres. I never meant to offend anyone and I was not referring to our players. I utilized a figure of speech that was never intended to be taken literally. I would never characterize our players or our league that way and I apologize to anyone who was offended by it .”

McNair reportedly donated$ 1m to Donald Trump’s inaugural committee. The US president has been a vocal opponent of the NFL anthem protests.

Texans wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins was an unexpected no-show at practice on Friday; head coach-and-four Bill O’Brien declined to address whether it was related to McNair’s controversial commentaries. Some Texans players deemed staging a stoppage, ESPN reported.

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Iditarod dog doping scandal puts future of sled race under scrutiny

The announcement that champ musher Dallas Seaveys puppies had tested positive for a banned substance was confiscated on by animal welfare campaigners

Cycling. Baseball. Track. Horse racing. Now dogsledding has become the latest professional sport to be engulfed in a doping scandal, this one relating to the huskies that dash across the frozen scenery in Alaska’s grueling, 1,000 -mile Iditarod.

The governing board of the world’s most well known sled dog race disclosed on Monday that four puppies are subordinate to Dallas Seavey had tested positive for a banned substance, the opioid painkiller Tramadol, after his second-place finish last March.

It was the first time since the race instituted narcotic testing in 1994 that a test is coming positive.

Seavey strongly denied dedicating any banned substances to his dogs, suggesting instead that someone may have sabotaged their food, and race officials said he would not be punished because they were unable to prove he acted intentionally. That means he will maintain his titles and his $59,000 in winnings this year.

But the finding was another blow to the Iditarod, which has find the loss of major sponsors, numerous dog deaths, assaults on competitors and pressure from animal rights activists, who say huskies are run to demise or left with severe infections and bloody paws.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals( Peta) seized on the scandal on Tuesday.

” If a member of the Iditarod’s’ royalty’ dopes dogs, how many other mushers are turning to opioids in order to force puppies to push through the pain ?” Peta said in a statement. It added:” This doping scandal is further proof that this race needs to end .”

Fern Levitt, director of the documentary Sled Dogs, an expose on the therapy of the huskies, said:” The race is all about winning and getting to the finish line despite the inhumane treatment towards the dogs .”

Earlier this year, the annual Anchorage-to-Nome trek lost a major corporate backer, Wells Fargo, and race officials accused animal rights organizations of pressuring the bank and other sponsors with” manipulative datum” about the therapy of the dogs.

Five dogs connected to this year’s race succumbed, bringing total demises to more than 150 in the Iditarod’s 44 -year history, according to Peta’s count. And last year, two mushers were attacked by a drunken man on a snowmobile in separate assaults near a remote village. One puppy was killed and others were injured. The attacker was given a six-month sentence.

Seavey won the Iditarod in 2012, 2014, 2015 and 2016 and has had nine straight top-1 0 finishes. He finished second this year to his father, Mitch, who collected a first-place prize of $71,250.

Dogs are subject to random testing before and during the race, and the first 20 squads to cross the finish line are all automatically tested.

” I’m probably the only person in the world that knows definitively I did not give a drug to my puppy. I’ve never use a banned substance in the race ,” the 30 -year-old Seavey said in an interview.

In a video positioned on his Facebook page, he said that security was lax along the route and that someone might have tampered with his puppies’ food. He added that he wouldn’t be” thrown under the bus” by the race’s governing board and that he had withdrawn from the 2018 race in protest.

Seavey said he expected the Iditarod Trail Committee to ban him from the race for speaking out. Mushers are prohibited from blaming the race or sponsors. An Iditarod spokesman, Chas St George, said that decision would be up to the committee’s board of directors.

The committee decided to release the name of the offending musher on Monday after scores of competitors demanded it do so. Race officials initially refused to release the name because, “theyre saying”, it was unlikely they could demonstrate the competitor acted intentionally and because a lawyer advised them not to attain the name public.

At the time of this year’s race, the rules basically said that to punish a musher, race officers had to provide proof of intent. The regulations have since been changed to hold mushers liable for any positive narcotic test unless they can show something beyond their control happened.

Wade Marrs, president of the Iditarod Official Finishers Club, said he did not believe Seavey intentionally administered the medications to his animals. Marrs said he believed the musher had too much integrity and brains to do such a thing.

” I don’t really know what to think at the moment ,” Marrs said.” It’s a very touchy situation .”

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Colin Kaepernick to file lawsuit against NFL owners over collusion

Colin Kaepernick, who many believe has been blackballed by the NFL, is reportedly filing a suit against the leagues owners.

Colin Kaepernick, who many believe has been blackballed by the NFL following his protest against racial injustice in the US, is reportedly set to file a suit against the league’s team owners.

According to Mike Freeman of Bleacher Report, the former San Francisco 49 ers quarterback has hired attorney Mark Geragos and will claim NFL owners have colluded to keep him out of the league. Under the league’s Collective Bargaining Agreement squads and the NFL are forbidden from coming together to deprive a player of employment.

” If the NFL( as well as all professional sports teams) is to remain a meritocracy, then principled and peaceful protest- which the owners themselves stimulated great theater imitating weeks ago- should not be punished and athletes should not be denied job based on partisan political provocation by the Executive Branch of our government ,” Geragos said in a statement.

” Such a precedent threatens all patriotic Americans and harkens back to our darkest days as a nation. Protecting all athletes from such collusive conduct is what compelled Mr Kaepernick to file his grievance. Colin Kaepernick’s goal has always been, and remains, to simply be treated fairly by the league he performed at the highest level for and to return to the football playing field .”

Kaepernick chose to kneel last season during the national anthem. He was joined by other NFL players and the protests have continued into this season: on Sunday seven San Francisco 49 ers players knelt during the anthem.

The movement has angered Donald Trump, who ordered Vice-President Mike Pence to leave a game last week in which players were protesting.

The protests have also been blamed for autumns in the league’s Tv ratings this year, although other factors, such as the decline of television viewership in general, could also be at play. Surveys help find the majority of white fans are opposed to the protests while most black fans support them.

Kaepernick, who led the 49 ers to the Super Bowl in 2013, left San Francisco last season and has not been picked up since. The fact that many teams with a need for a quarterback have passed up the chance to sign Kaepernick left many to believe owneds are either punishing him for his stance or believe his presence would alienate fans.

” It’s difficult to see because[ Kaepernick] played at such a high level, and you assure guys, quarterbacks, who have never played at a high level being signed by squads. So it’s difficult to understand ,” said Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman earlier this year.

” Obviously he’s going to be in a backup role at this point. But you see quarterbacks, there was a year Matt Schaub had a pretty rough year and got signed the next year. So it has nothing to do with football. You can see that. They signed guys who have had off year before .”

Another potential opening for Kaepernick appeared on Sunday when the Green Bay Packers lost their star quarterback, Aaron Rodgers, to a broken collarbone.

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Mike Ditka rips NFL protests: ‘There has been no oppression in the last 100 years’

The Hall of Fame coach said on Monday that he doesnt believe theres been oppression in the United States in the last 100 years

Hall of Fame coach Mike Ditka said on Monday that he doesn’t believe there has been persecution in the United States” in the last 100 years “.

The 77 -year-old Ditka stimulated the remarks during an interview on Westwood One’s Monday Night Football pregame show when asked about the ongoing wave of NFL players opting to sit or kneel during the national anthem as a route to protest social injustice in America.

” All of a sudden, it’s become a big deal now, about persecution ,” Ditka said.” There has been no oppression in the last 100 years that I know of. Now perhaps I’m not watching it as carefully as other people. I believe the opportunity is there for everyone . … If you want to work, if you want to try, if you want to put endeavour into yourself, I think you can accomplish anything .”

He added:” Is that the stage for this? If you want to protest, or what it is you want to protest, you’ve got a right to do that, but I think you’re a professional athlete, you have an obligation to the game. I think you have to respect the game. That’s what I think is the most important thing. I don’t see a lot of respect for video games. I just see respect for their own individual opinions. Sentiments are like snouts, we all have one. Some are good. Some are bad .”

Steve Smith, a five-time Pro Bowl broad receiver who played 16 seasons with the Carolina Panthers and Baltimore Ravens before retiring in January, was among those who took objection with Ditka’s remarks.

Steve Smith Sr (@ 89 SteveSmith)

Really? Civil rights act of 1964, voting act of 1965, Rosa parks 1955, #mikeditka go sit ur dumb a $$ down somewhere. I respect my elders https :// t.co/ liHBMqS9sF

October 10, 2017

Steve Smith Sr (@ 89 SteveSmith)

But to say this dedicates us a peek into you’re heart. Jim crow statutes, brown v. Board of education
Great coach-and-four …….. Clueless person https :// t.co/ liHBMqS9sF

October 10, 2017

It’s not the first time Ditka has spoken on the issue. The longtime NFL coach said last year he had” no respect” for quarterback Colin Kaepernick, then with the San Francisco 49 ers, shortly after he first kneeled during the course of its anthem, triggering their own nationals debate and inspiring dozens of NFL players to follow suit.

” I think it’s a problem, anybody who contempts this country and the flag ,” Ditka said then in a radio interview on KRLD-FM in Dallas.” If they don’t like the country, if they don’t like our flag, get the hell out. That’s what I think.

” I have no respect for Colin Kaepernick. He probably has no respect for me, that’s his selection. My option is that I like this country, I respect our flag, and I don’t see all the atrocities going on in this country that people say are going on.

” I ensure opportunities if people want to look for opportunity. Now if they don’t want to look for them, then you can find problems with anything, but this is the land of opportunity because you can be anything you want to be if you work. Now if you don’t work, that’s a different problem .”

Ditka, who was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1988, is one of two people in NFL history to win a league title as a player, an deputy coach and a head coach-and-four. He graduated from local hero to Chicago icon during an 11 -year coaching stint with the Bears that included the team’s only Super Bowl win during the course of its 1985 season, then retired permanently after a failed comeback with the New Orleans Saints in 1999.

The outspoken conservative publicly flirted with running against Democratic candidate Barack Obama, who was then a nation senator, for the open seat in the US Senate vacated by Illinois senator Peter Fitzgerald in 2004- an election that jump-started Obama’s ascent to the presidency in four years’ time.

” Biggest mistake I’ve ever stimulated ,” he told the Dickinson Press in 2013.” Not that I would have won, but I likely would have and he wouldn’t be in the White House .”

Last year, Ditka called Obama” the worst chairwoman we’ve ever had “.

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Pence follows Trump order and walks out of 49ers-Colts after players kneel

VP leaves NFL game after about a dozen San Francisco players kneel, before Trump corroborates walkout was planned and says he is proud

Vice-president Mike Pence left the 49 ers-Colts NFL game in Indianapolis on Sunday in a schemed stoppage, after about a dozen San Francisco players kneeled during the course of its playing of “the member states national” anthem.

Pence announced his deviation from the Lucas Oil Stadium on Twitter. A White House statement follow, with a tweet from President Donald Trump which corroborated the stoppage was not spontaneous.

” I asked @VP Pence to leave stadium if any players kneeled, disrespecting our country ,” Trump wrote.” I am proud of him and @SecondLady Karen .”

Protests of the anthem by NFL players, almost all African American, began last year when the then 49 ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick kneeled in protest against racial injustice and police brutality. 49 ers players have been prominent among those kneeling this season and could have been expected to kneeling on Sunday.

Nor was Pence scheduled to take up the whole game. Us air force Two was due to take off from Indianapolis International Airport at 4pm on Sunday, in order for the vice-president to attend a political fundraiser in Los Angeles. The Colts-4 9ers game kicked off at 1pm ET and finished after 4.30 pm, after going to overtime.

At a rally in Alabama last month, Trump launched aggressive criticism of players and the NFL. Though Kaepernick had kneeled to protest unpunished police killings of African Americans, the president and the White House insisted that protesting the anthem showed disrespect to the flag and to American troops, veterans and first responders.

Senior administration figures including Treasury Secretary Stephen Mnuchin and Attorney General Jeff Sessions were deployed to say that in this instance, freedom of speech did not apply. In answer, large numbers of players knelt, teams co-ordinated actions and owners criticised Trump’s terms.

Though debate continued about the meaning of the protests, until Pence’s walkout the issue had seemed to be receding from public view.

Players and some NFL writers guess Kaepernick, who took the 49 ers to the Super Bowl in 2013, has been blackballed by the league. On Sunday, CBS reported that he said he would not protest the anthem if he ever returned. The reporter then recanted the narrative and Kaepernick tweeted a quote attributed to- but not coined by– Winston Churchill:” A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its gasps on .”

Members
Members of the San Francisco 49 ers kneel during the course of its playing of the national anthem. Photograph: Michael Conroy/ AP

Many commentators have also accused the president of seeking to use the NFL protests as a distraction from his own political woes.

Trump has recently been criticised for his response to the catastrophic effect of Hurricane Maria on Puerto Rico, for his approach to North Korea, and over his relationship with secretary of state Rex Tillerson. On Sunday, the president was embroiled in an embarrassing exchange of insults with Bob Corker, the chair of the Senate foreign relations committee and a senior is part of Republican leadership.

The New York Times reported in September that attacking protesting NFL players was ” a calculated attempt to shore up” Trump’s political base.

In the statement issued by the White House, Pence said:” I left today’s Colts game because President Trump and I will not dignify any event that disrespects our soldiers, our Flag, or our National Anthem .”

The statement then seemed to allude to Pence’s visit to Las Vegas on Saturday, when he gratified survivors and first-responders from the mass shooting at a music celebration last week in which 58 people were killed and virtually 500 injured.

It read:” At a period when so many Americans are inspiring our nation with their fortitude, resolve, and resilience , now, more than ever, we should rally around our flag and everything that unites us .”

The White House released a picture of Pence and his wife stand for the anthem at the stadium in Indianapolis, with their hands on their hearts.

Pence’s Las Vegas visit mean he missed an unveiling of a statue of the great Indianapolis quarterback Peyton Manning on Saturday. Manning’s jersey was retired on Sunday.

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NFL players kneel for anthem in unprecedented defiance of Trump

Ravens and Jaguars players lead protest in London and owners voice solidarity before president says his attack on protests over racial injustice has nothing to do with race

NFL players staged an unprecedented wave of protest on Sunday, beginning at Wembley Stadium in London, as Donald Trump maintained his attack on players who kneel in protest against the national anthem.

It was a climactic day for a motion that began with a single backup quarterback kneeling before a pre-season game 13 months ago and had now been prompted a nation to wrestle with questions of free speech and racial justice.

Colin Kaepernick, then with the San Francisco 49 ers, kneeled in an attempt to provoke debate over race and police barbarism. He is now without a squad but active players have followed his example. This weekend, the protest spilled into baseball: the Oakland A’s catcher Bruce Maxwell kneeled during the course of its anthem before a game against the Texas Rangers.

Early on Sunday, shortly before his own treasury secretary insisted he was not picking a fight, Trump doubled down on his bellicose remarks at a rally in Alabama on Friday night. The president recurred his challenge to NFL team proprietors and encouraged fans to stop attending until the owners take action.

” If NFL fans refuse to go to games until players stop disrespecting our Flag& Country, you will see change take place fast. Fire or suspend !” Trump wrote on Twitter.” NFL attendance and ratings are WAY DOWN. Boring games yes, but many stay away since they are love our country. League should back US .”

Later, at an impromptu media scrum as he headed back to Washington from his Bedminster, New Jersey golf club, Trump was asked if he was inflaming racial tensions by criticising protesting players who are almost all black.

” This has nothing to do with race ,” he said.” I never said anything about race. This has nothing to do with race or anything else. This has to do with respect for our country and respect for our flag .”

Cleveland
Cleveland Browns players stand and kneel before their game against the Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. Photo: Thomas J. Russo/ USA Today Sports

Wembley staged the day’s first game. Around 25 players from the Jacksonville Jaguars and Baltimore Ravens kneeled. The Guardian’s Sean Ingle reported that no white players appeared to kneel but” many players, coaches and even the Jaguars’ proprietor Shahid Khan connected limbs instead as they stood, presenting unity for their black team-mates against Trump “.

Later, at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, several Miami Dolphins wore black T-shirts supporting Kaepernick before facing the New York Jets. During the anthem, the Dolphins locked limbs. The Pittsburgh Steelers decided to remain in the tunnel before their game against the Bears at Chicago’s Soldier Field.

” We’re not going to play politics ,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin told CBS.” People shouldn’t have to choose. If a guy wants to go about his normal business and participate in the anthem, he shouldn’t be forced to choose sides. If a guy feelings the need to do something, he shouldn’t be separated from his team-mate who chooses not to .”

Dozens more players either kneeled or locked arms before the 1pm kickoffs. Trump tweeted:” Great solidarity for our National Anthem and for our Country. Standing with locked limbs is good, kneeling is not acceptable. Bad ratings !”

The reveals of protest were not confined to the teams. Musicians performing the anthem also took knees at Falcons-Lions in Detroit and Seahawks-Titans in Nashville, where both teams bided off the field.

Trump constructed his initial remarks at a Friday night rally for the Republican senator Luther Strange.” Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL proprietors, when someone disrespects our flag, to say,’ Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. Out! He’s fired. He’s fired !'” he said.

He also complained about regulations introduced to improve safety in the NFL, which has a serious problem with head injuries.

The president’s statements and his withdrawal on Saturday of a White House invitation to the NB-Achampion Golden State Warriors prompted a remarkably strong reply. NBA great LeBron James called the president a “bum” while Buffalo Bills NFL running back LeSean McCoy called him an “asshole”.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell expressed disappointment with the “divisive” comments while the New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, a close friend of Trump, was among squad owners to side with their players. In a statement, Kraft said he was ” deep disappointed” by Trump’s remarks.

” There is no greater unifier in this country than athletics, and unfortunately , nothing more divisive than politics ,” Kraft said.

In London, Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti said of his players and coaches:” We respect their demo and support them 100% .” Los Angeles Rams owner Stan Kroenke, a stockholder in Arsenal, released a statement affirming his belief in his players'” freedom to peacefully express themselves “.

The
The Pittsburgh Steelers sideline is nearly empty during the course of its playing of the national anthem at Soldier Field. Photo: Kiichiro Sato/ AP

White House officers played defense. Treasury secretary Stephen Mnuchin told CNN Trump was responding to” the NFL saying people should be able to decide what they want to do and disrespect the United States flag “.

” He thinks this is about respect for the military and so many people who set their lives at risk and what the country stands for … players have the right to free speech off the field. On the field “its about” respect for lots of people .”

Marc Short, White House director of legislative affairs, told Fox News Sunday players had” a first amendment right” to protest but added:” NFL owneds also have a right to fires those players .”

The Hall of Fame quarterback Kurt Warner addressed the issue on the NFL Network.

“[ The flag is] a emblem of the ideals of our large country: one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all ,” he said.” The anthem: it’s a reminder to us of those things. The president of the United States, his role is to uphold and to fight for the rights of every person, every American. And so when I heard the comments, I was so disappointed because I believe[ Trump’s] commentaries are completely contradictory to what the flag represents.

” We have this narrative that these protests are contradictory to our flag and contradictory to our military. I don’t see them that route. I ensure them as complementary to the ideals to the flag, to the military and what they fought for.

” I have not heard one player that has not been more than grateful to our military. This isn’t about that at all. It’s about standing up for the ideals of the flag .”

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Donald Trump defied at Wembley as Jaguars and Ravens kneel for anthem

Around 25 players from the Jacksonville Jaguars and Baltimore Ravens took a knee during the singing of the US national anthem at Wembley Stadium on Sunday

Twenty-seven players from the Jacksonville Jaguars and Baltimore Ravens took a knee during the singing of the US national anthem at Wembley Stadium on Sunday as the protest against the US president, Donald Trump, intensified. It was the most ever in a single NFL game.

Trump had increased his criticism of NFL players on Saturday , not only is recommended that fans of the sport should” refuse to go to games until players stop disrespecting our Flag& Country” but also urging any players who took a knee to be fired or suspended.

” NFL attendance and ratings are WAY DOWN ,” he added.” Boring games yes, but many stay away since they are love our country. League should back US .”

However Trump’s testy demands were ignored by more than 80,000 fans at Wembley as well as a great number of players from the Jaguars and Ravens, who took a knee. The Guardian counted around 12 players from the Jaguars and 14 from the Ravens. There did not appear to be any white players taking a knee. However many players, coaches and even the Jaguars’ owned Shahid Khan connected limbs instead as they stood, proving unity for their black team-mates against Trump.

The Ravens’ players and coaching staff were also supported by their owner Steve Bisciotti, who said:” We respect their demo and support them 100% .”

The NFL’s rules encourage but do not involve players to stand for the playing of the anthem. Several team owners have issued statements over the past 24 hours condemning Trump’s comments as divisive and supporting their players’ ability to express themselves.

The latest came on Sunday morning from the New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, who said he was ” profoundly disappointed” by the president’s views.

Kraft, who has previously called Trump a very good friend when the Patriots visited the White House in April, said in a statement:” There is no greater unifier in this country than sports, and unfortunately , nothing more divisive than politics.

” I suppose our political leaders could learn a lot from the lessons of teamwork and the importance of working together toward a common goal ,” he added.” Our players are intelligent, thoughtful, and care deeply about our community and I support their right to peacefully affect social change and raise awareness in accordance with the arrangements that they feel is impactful .”

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‘Sunil Gulati has an agenda to stay in power in US Soccer and that is it’

Eric Wynalda, the former USA forward turned commentator, exposes he is ready to roll up his sleeves and challenge Sunil Gulati for the role of US Soccer president

Eric Wynalda doesn’t yet know if he will run for president of the United States Soccer Federation next year but he does know something has to change at the upper part of the athletic in America.

Wynalda, apparently, is not alone. After 11 unchallenged years as USSF president, incumbent Sunil Gulati is currently facing at the least two- and perhaps more- declared challengers at an election in February.

Wynalda comes with a broad view on the state of the American game. A Hall of Famer with more than 100 appearances for the men’s national squad, his 34 goals made him all-time resulting goalscorer until Landon Donovan violated that record in 2007. Now 48, he was the first American to play in the Bundesliga before Jurgen Klinsmann stimulated that cool- if not mandatory- and scored the first-ever aim in Major League Soccer. He is a coach-and-four and now known as a TV pundit with Fox Sports.

” I’ve stood back for two decades waiting for things to get better ,” Wynalda says.” What I’ve realise is that there is not a whole lot of people who are willing or even wanting to invoke change. Out of moral obligation, I suppose I’m eventually at the point where I’m asking,’ What can I do to help ?’ I don’t want to tweet something or write an article or start a fight. I want to roll up my sleeves .”

Eric
Eric Wynalda in his heyday for the United States soccer team. Photograph: Monica M Davey/ AFP/ Getty Images

Disquiet about Gulati’s leadership has been growing in the broader football community, heightened by the tepid performance of the men’s national squad under Klinsmann and deja vu successor Bruce Arena- both handpicked by Gulati. While on-field results can’t be directly attributed to a human who teaches economics at Columbia University for his day chore, they can be a symptom of deeper issues, according to Wynalda.

” I’ve had at least 50 calls from people encouraging me to run ,” Wynalda says.” Not merely people on Twitter who are interested promotion and relegation and want the[ USSF] house of cards to autumn. I’ve heard from people who want to know how we can induce football better in this country .”

The success of soccer in the US, Wynalda says, should not just be measured by participating interest and revenue streams if that doesn’t translate to broader development and evolution.

” Just because the masses are playing the athletic, they suppose success is going to magically happen some day by accident ,” Wynalda says.” Sometimes it does- a Clint Dempsey, Landon Donovan, or Christian Pulisic happens- but that is not good enough. Coming 18 th at a World Cup is not a success story .”

Off the field, Gulati can claim the federation’s good financial position, its influence within Concacaf and Fifa, and the 2026 joint World Cup bid, in his favor. He has also successfully avoided any USSF links to the Fifa corruption scandal despite Department of Justice indictments nailing individuals doing business in or from the US right under the snout of his organization.

Gulati was close to the late Chuck Blazer, the corrupt former Fifa vice-president and Concacaf general secretary who turned FBI informer, and has never clarified the dynamic of that relationship or if he has been interviewed in ongoing DoJ and Swiss investigations conducted by football corruption.

While Wynalda contemplates whether to make a move, Boston attorney Steve Gans has declared he wants Gulati’s undertaking. Gans said in a recent interview with the Washington Post that the state of the game” feelings more like 1989 or 90″. Also operating is Paul Lapointe, a Massachusetts-based former indoor soccer squad owned, while John Motta- another New Englander- is a US Soccer board member holding a challenge.

Motta is president of the United States Adult Soccer Association( guess amateur players ), a Dunkin’ Donuts franchise mogul and the only person to ever defeat Gulati in an election. In 1998, Motta beat Gulati, then an MLS deputy commissioner, in a election to elect a USSF vice-president. Still, Gulati persisted. Eight year later he was elected USSF president.

Of course, Gulati has not yet signalled whether he even intends to run again but the entice of four more years at US Soccer- especially if it wins hosting rights for the 2026 World Cup- is powerful, even more so with Gulati’s elected posture on Fifa’s perk-heavy council. However, an option mooted by some insiders is for Gulati to step aside and usher in US Soccer vice-president Carlos Cordeiro, a former Goldman Sachs executive, as his status quo successor.

Wynalda believes Gulati’s time as an unchallenged leader is over and, as every economic prof knows, the theory is that competitor breeds innovation and success.

” I don’t think it is healthy[ to have someone in charge for 11 years] unless there is a clear vision or a plan ,” Wynalda says.

” Right now, it is just one guy who not only professes to be the smartest guy in the room and has an answer for every single question you hurl at him but he has an agenda and that is why there is a lot of people saying enough is enough. His agenda is to stay in power and that is it .”

Wynalda adds:” People are no longer simply interested or curious about football in the US. They are passionate. This is the moment to genuinely give these people who are in love with the game a better product .”

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