Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.

The Sports Matrix: Wednesday 23 March 2011

Platini wooed after Uefa re-election

Michel Platini was re-elected unopposed for a second term as Uefa president yesterday. His increasing power was underlined by the enthusiasm of both candidates for the Fifa presidency, Sepp Blatter and Mohamed bin Hammam, to win his support. MORE

Dernbach ready for possible debut

Jade Dernbach joined up with the England squad yesterday and may make his debut in Saturday’s quarter-final. The South Africa-born 24-year-old said that “everyone has been really welcoming and it’s been a great environment to come into.” MORE

Hamilton wants quiet opener

Lewis Hamilton hopes that this weekend’s Australian Grand Prix is less eventful than last year’s, when he was excluded from classification having finished third after lying to stewards over an incident with Jarno Trulli. MORE

Roma’s De Rossi offered to United

Roma midfielder Daniele de Rossi’s representatives have made ManchesterUnited aware of his availability in the summer. De Rossi is considering leaving Rome and only has one year left to run on his contract. Real Madrid are said to be interested. MORE

Cork: Class of 2011 has self-belief

Dominic Cork compares England’s quarter-final defeat to Sri Lanka in 1996 to this year’s game for i, saying that unlike 15 years ago “there will not be any surprises” for England, and that the current side have stronger self-belief than the team he played in. MORE

Lille ready to fight for supremacy

They have not won the title for 57 years but Lille are top of Ligue 1 and are chasing a domestic Double. Moving to a new 50,000 capacity stadium in summer 2012, they hope to mount a long-term challenge to the supremacy of Lyons and Marseilles. MORE

Johnson: Coaching England ‘addictive’

Martin Johnson spoke yesterday of how much he enjoyed the Six Nations, despite losing in Dublin. “It’s an addictive job, even when you’re suffering the stress and disappointment,” he said. “The day after the last match is always the worst day of the year.” MORE

Collins praises Speed’s planning

James Collins has praised the professionalism of Gary Speed’s new management of Wales. “It sounds silly, but think we’re all wearing the same tops around the hotel,” said the defender. He said Speed’s “big thing” was to qualify for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. MORE

Leeds’ Bailey says sorry over jokes

Ryan Bailey has been fined and warned by Leeds after apologising for tasteless jokes he posted online about the Japanese tsunami. “I can see that they are deeply offensive,” Bailey said of his jokes, and he will be making a donation to the disaster fund. MORE

Opinion: James Lawton

Michael Brennan’s iconic photograph of Muhammad Ali is being submitted to America’s National Portrait Gallery. “In one hundred and twenty fifth of a second I shot the picture I had always dreamed of,” recalls Brennan. MORE

Terry: Come to me with complaints

John Terry defiantly returned as England captain yesterday, claiming that players with a problem with his regaining the armband should speak to him personally about the issue. “I’m not going to be everybody’s cup of tea,” he conceded. “But I would respect people if they came to me personally rather than hearing things.” Terry had the captaincy stripped off him by Fabio Capello (right) last year following allegations of an affair with Vanessa Perroncel, the former fiancée of Wayne Bridge, a move that he made clear yesterday he still believes to have been mistaken. “I didn’t agree with the decision, which I told them [Capello and Franco Baldini] face to face,” he said of the incident, “but I said I respected their decision and I’ll continue to work hard.” Terry was delighted to have been reinstated to the position that he was first awarded by Steve McClaren in August 2006. “As we get old, we live and learn,” he said. “We move on. As a man, as a player, we can see I’ve moved on, on and off the field. The emotion is quite overwhelming. I’m delighted on a personal note.” MORE

Jarvis admits to Giggs inspiration

Matt Jarvis has praised Ryan Giggs as his inspiration ahead of a possible England debut against Wales on Saturday. “That was what I was looking at when I was growing up,” he said. He described his rejection byMillwall as an “incentive” in his career. MORE

Tidal Bay ready for Grand National

An intriguing Grand National contender was confirmed in the mix yesterday. Tidal Bay, who finished sixth in the Gold Cup last week, was talked up by trainer Howard Johnson. “He’s come out of Cheltenham grand,” he said. “He didn’t overexert himself there.” MORE