The Sport Matrix: Tuesday 24 March 2015


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The Independent Online

Skrtel faces ban for stamp on De Gea

The Football Association has charged Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel with violent conduct following his clash with Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea during Sunday’s Premier League match. Skrtel appeared to step on the Spaniard in the final minute of the match at Anfield, which Liverpool lost 2-1. The FA said in a statement the incident was not seen by the officials, but was caught on video.

Lukaku ruled out for Belgium games

Romelu Lukaku will miss Belgium’s two forthcoming Euro 2016 qualification matches with a hamstring injury he sustained at Queen’s Park Rangers on Sunday. The striker limped off during the second half of Everton’s 2-1 win and will not play against Cyprus on Saturday or away to Israel on Tuesday night. Aston Villa’s Christian Benteke is also a doubt for Belgium after picking up a hip injury against Swansea City.

Seven clubs chase Akpom on loan

Arsenal striker Chuba Akpom is set go on loan in the next few days, with seven Championship clubs hoping to sign him. Norwich and Nottingham Forest are leading the race, with Bournemouth, Ipswich Town, Derby County, Wigan Athletic and Fulham also interested. Akpom, 19, who is currently training with England’s Under-20 squad, has made seven substitute appearances for Arsenal this season.

Alonso cleared to race in Malaysia

McLaren driver Fernando Alonso has been cleared to race in the Malaysian Grand Prix on Sunday after missing the Formula One season opener following a crash in testing.

McLaren said the two-time world champion followed a “rigorous, specialised training programme” since last month’s accident and has been passed  fit after medical assessment by the FIA.

Somerset pull off Gayle coup for T20

West Indies batsman Chris Gayle will play for Somerset in this summer’s T20 Blast. The opener will join the county in late May, with the exact date of his arrival depending on his involvement in the knockout stages of the Indian Premier League, and he will remain with them until 13 June. Somerset hope the 35-year-old will be available for six matches.