The Sports Matrix: Wednesday 2 November 2011


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Frustrated Arsenal held at home

Marseilles held a much-changed Arsenal side to a goalless draw at the Emirates, with both teams still in the box seat to qualify from Group F for the last 16. Arsène Wenger’s side had much the better of the chances but were unable to find away through. MORE

‘Suspicions’ raised over other players

The ICC will meet with the police before deciding what action, if any, to take against other Pakistan players following yesterday’s verdicts. The prosecution suggested that both Kamran Akmal and Wahab Riaz may have been involved in “suspicious practices”. MORE

Money was king for Pakistan’s prince

Salman Butt’s ability to separate the two sides of his character was remarkable. While he adroitly performed the duties of a Test captain, he oversaw attempts to spot-fix, actions potentially ruinous to his sport. MORE

Ferguson backing Ferdinand to adapt

Sir Alex Ferguson has backed out-of-favour defender Rio Ferdinand to adapt his game to cope with his advancing years. “He has to tailor his game a different way,” Ferguson said of the England international. “He cannot rely on his pace, that is obvious.” MORE

Dark day does not mean fixing is rife

It would be wrong to make the News of the World story something that it patently was not, an exposé of rampant and filthy misdeeds in the entire game. But that some Pakistani cricketers were up to their necks in it is difficult to rebuff. MORE

Mancini offers Tevez redemption

Roberto Mancini has said Carlos Tevez could yet play again for Manchester City, despite previously declaring the forward to be “ finished” at the club. “It is important to apologise for what you do and finish,” he said. “I asked him to apologise. It’s easy.” MORE

Chubby all smiles after Rory meeting

Rory McIlroy met former agent Chubby Chandler in Shanghai yesterday for the first time since their split, with Chandler insisting all was well: “We’ve both already moved on,” he said. “We shared a laugh and a joke and were fine, like I knew we would be.” MORE

Opinion: James Lawton

Butt and Asif were mature players. They knew the high-profile cricketer’s life. Maybe Amir, dazzled by the quick money which his brothers could not expect to earn in their lifetimes, would have fallen in any circumstances. MORE

Chelsea held by Genk after Luiz penalty miss

Chelsea were left to rue a missed penalty from David Luiz as Genk came from behind to salvage a 1-1 draw in Belgium last night. Brazilian midfielder Ramires had put the visitors ahead on 25 minutes after exchanging passes with Fernando Torres, before Raul Meireles struck the crossbar as Chelsea dominated. Thomas Buffel’s handball offered Andre Villas-Boas’s side another chance to extend their lead, but Luiz’s weak penalty was palmed away by Laszlo Koteles. Chelsea, who beat the Belgian side 5-0 at Stamford Bridge two weeks ago, were made to pay on the hour mark, Jelle Vossen (above) finding the net after Fabien Camus was allowed time and space on the right side of the area. Chelsea next head to Bayer Leverkusen in three weeks. MORE

Pardew inspires Magpies to fly high

Newcastle United continue to confound the critics, sitting in a Champions League position after an unbeaten start to the season, having beaten Stoke 3-1 on Monday. Jason Mellor looks at the reason’s behind the unlikely success of Alan Pardew’s side. MORE

Mallinder states England intent

Jim Mallinder, Northampton’s director of rugby, has declared his interest in coaching England as doubts persist over the future of Martin Johnson. “Aspire to be the best you can,” he said. “If I ever have that honour, it would be very difficult to turn down.” MORE