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Sweden striker Ibrahimovic makes his opinion about team's Euro 2008 lineup known

Sweden striker Ibrahimovic makes his opinion about team's Euro 2008 lineup known

Players normally don't advise the coach on which players to select for the team's lineup, at least not in front of a room full of reporters and TV cameras. Count on Zlatan Ibrahimovic to break the mold.
The Sweden striker said he'd like to see two newcomers in the team's starting lineup: midfielder Sebastian Larsson and fullback Fredrik Stoor.
"It depends on what tactic we chose, but they are two really good players," Ibrahimovic said. "They are hungry and new in the team. I hope they get to play."
Sweden coach Lars Lagerback was not amused when asked whether he would follow his star player's recommendations.
"They are competing for a place in the starting lineup just like the other players," Lagerback said.
What's more, Lagerback added, Sweden's coaching staff doesn't discuss its lineup selections with the players.
"That's the only thing we don't discuss with them," he said.
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COFFEE ANYONE?: Vienna is taking its famous coffeehouse culture to another level. Literally.
Starting Saturday, caffeine-craving fans can enjoy their cups of joe on a massive platform elevated six meters (20 feet) above ground. The space, lodged just a stone's throw from the fan zone between the city's art history and natural history museums, seats about 1,000 people.
In addition to a slew of different coffees, cakes and snacks, Meinl's Kaffeewelt will feature shows, piano performances, readings and, yes, strudel-baking sessions.
There's also a children's section and a VIP area where privacy-seeking patrons can pay for special service and atmosphere.
Organizers say they expect about 13,000 guests per day.
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NOT A TWO-TEAMER: Switzerland's Kosovo-born midfielder Valon Behrami wants to help his original homeland get its own national football team. That does not mean he wants to switch jerseys.
"My heart is always in Kosovo. My family comes from there, my grandmother is from there, my grandfather is from there," said the 23-year-old Behrami, who moved as a child from Mitrovica in Yugoslavia to southern Switzerland.
"I always wear the Kosovo colors," he said. "But I am on the Swiss team, and when I play football I wear the Swiss colors."
Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in February, but has not been recognized as a sovereign country by the United Nations, nor by FIFA. Still, Behrami said he wanted to help football develop in his homeland in any way he could, barring switching national teams.
"It's not so easy to change national teams," said Behrami, who plays for Lazio. "It's not the same as a club."
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OUR BOY: A day after welcoming Spain to Neustift, Austria, with some traditional song and dance, locals were ready to adopt striker Fernando Torres.
Several hundred residents from the Stubai valley descended on the Sportplatz Kampl training ground to watch Spain prepare for Tuesday's opening Group D match against Russia. Children, teenagers and adults mixed in the stands, many wearing the red jerseys of Spain,
"I don't think I would be here so much if (Torres) wasn't here," said Martina Wegsheider, a 19-year-old student and aspiring Olympic cross-country skier.
Kids lined the touchline to retrieve balls, and many pointed to and spoke excitedly about the 24-year-old Liverpool striker, who took some time to pose for photos and sign autographs.
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ALL-TIME TEAM: Marco van Basten and Guus Hiddink, two of three Dutch coaches at Euro 2008, were picked be a part of all-time Netherlands team.
Van Basten, which is coaching his country at Euro 2008, was voted to spearhead the team. Russia coach Hiddink was voted to lead from the sidelines alongside Rinus Michels, who coached the Dutch to the Euro 1988 title. Hiddink led the Netherlands to the 1998 World Cup semifinals.
Playing their typical 4-3-3 lineup, Van Basten was up front with playmaker Johan Cruyff and Dennis Bergkamp. The former Arsenal striker and mainstay of the 1998 World Cup campaign beat out Rob Rensenbrink, who led the Dutch to the 1978 World Cup final.
Edwin van der Sar, the veteran of a half dozen international campaigns with the Dutch, was the undisputed goalkeeper.
The defensive lineup had Frank Rijkaard, Jaap Stam, Ruud Krol and Ronald Koeman, and the midfield consisted of Willem van Hanegem, Phillip Cocu and Johan Neeskens.
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HELPING VOICE: Cristiano Ronaldo took some time off from his preparation for the European Championship to record video messages for the Red Cross.
Named the Euro 2008 ambassador for the Red Cross online fundraising campaign, Ronaldo recorded messages to be aired at the stadiums before matches and in other campaigns.
"At Euro 2008, the world of football scores for the victims of land mines in Afghanistan. Join us," the Portuguese star said, according to the Portuguese football federation.
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ROUGH WEEK: Romania striker Adrian Mutu's week just got even tougher.
Already faced with paying euro12 million (US$18.6 million) to former club Chelsea for testing positive for cocaine in 2004, Mutu was dealt another blow Friday when his 80-year-old grandmother died.
Mutu spent much of his childhood in his grandmother's house in a spa resort in the Carpathian mountains in central Romania.


Updated : 2021-05-16 07:32 GMT+08:00