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Football: Diarra returns to Fulham after year out

Former Real Madrid and Lyon midfielder Mahamadou Diarra has returned to Fulham on a short-term contract, the Premier League strugglers announced on Wednesday. The 32-year-old Mali international was released by Fulham at the end of the 2012-13 season and has not played a professional game since December 2012 due to a longstanding knee problem. However, he has been given a contract until the end of the current campaign after proving his fitness and will be paid depending on the number of first-team appearances he makes.

Football: Chelsea v Galatasaray starting line-ups

Starting line-ups in the Champions League last 16 second-leg match between Chelsea and Galatasaray at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday: Chelsea (4-2-3-1) Petr Cech; Branislav Ivanovic, Gary Cahill, John Terry, Cesar Azpilicueta; Ramires, Frank Lampard; Eden Hazard, Oscar, Willian; Samuel Eto'o Coach: Jose Mourinho Galatasaray (4-3-1-2) Fernando Muslera; Emmanuel Eboue, Alex Telles, Aurelien Chedjou, Semih Kaya; Felipe Melo, Selcuk Inan, Yekta Kurtulus; Wesley Sneijder; Didier Drogba, Burak Yilmaz Coach: Roberto Mancini

Football: Odemwingie, El-Arabi are two-goal stars

Nigerian Peter Odemwingie and Moroccan Youssef El-Arabi were the two-goal African stars in the top European leagues at the weekend. Odemwingie scored via a deflection and a first-time shot to help Stoke City defeat West Ham 3-1 and move further away from the English Premier League relegation zone. El-Arabi raised his season goal tally to 11 with a brace for lowly Granada in a 3-3 Spanish La Liga stalemate at Getafe. ENGLAND YAYA TOURE (Man City)

Football: Odemwingie brace lifts Stoke past West Ham

Peter Odemwingie netted a brace and Marko Arnautovic also scored to lift Stoke City to a 3-1 win at home against Premier League rivals West Ham on Saturday. Both were equal on points before the clash with only goal difference separating the midtable sides scrambling to move away from the drop zone. But the hosts were trailing after just five minutes when striker Andy Carroll scored from a set piece pairing with Mark Noble at the Britannia Stadium.

Football: Nigeria on $100,000-a-man bonus to win World Cup

Nigeria's footballers stand to gain more than $100,000 each, should the African champions win every game at the World Cup and win the tournament, according to figures submitted to parliament. The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) is requesting that lawmakers approve a 1.2 billion-naira ($7.2 million) war chest for the Super Eagles' bid to become the competition's first African winners. Each player will pocket $10,000 for every group stage victory, according to the budget, which was submitted on Monday.

Football: $100,000 bonus for Nigeria World Cup triumph

Nigeria's footballers could earn more than $100,000 each if they become the first African team to win the World Cup this year. The figure pales into insignificance compared to the $800,000-plus given by Spain to its players who won the 2010 cup however. And Nigeria's players are already angry about unpaid prizes from last year's African Cup of Nations triumph. The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has asked the country's parliament to approve 1.2 billion-naira ($7.2 million) for the Super Eagles' bid to become the first World Cup winners from Africa.

Football: Cheeky Eto'o, Ba on target in Chelsea romp

Cameroonian Samuel Eto'o and Senegalese Demba Ba stole the show as Chelsea thumped Tottenham 4-0 at the weekend to take a seven-point English Premier League lead. Eto'o, who turned 33 Monday, celebrated breaking the deadlock by staggering toward the corner flag after manager Jose Mourinho recently suggested he may be older. Ba, who last week ended a long spell in the international wilderness owing to limited club game time, replaced Eto'o and bagged a late brace. ENGLAND SAMUEL ETO'O (Chelsea)

Football: Cheeky Eto'o, Ba on target in Chelsea romp

Cameroonian Samuel Eto'o and Senegalese Demba Ba stole the show as Chelsea thumped Tottenham 4-0 at the weekend to take a seven-point English Premier League lead. Eto'o, who turned 33 Monday, celebrated breaking the deadlock by staggering toward the corner flag after manager Jose Mourinho recently suggested he may be older. Ba, who last week ended a long spell in the international wilderness owing to limited club game time, replaced Eto'o and bagged a late brace. ENGLAND SAMUEL ETO'O (Chelsea)

Football: Algeria win, I. Coast draw, Cameroon crushed

Algeria won, Ivory Coast drew and Ghana and Cameroon lost Wednesday as African qualifiers prepared for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil with warm-up games. Striker El-Hilal Soudani put Algeria ahead in first-half stoppage-time and Inter Milan midfielder Saphir Taider added a second goal for a 2-0 victory over Slovenia in Blida. It was an encouraging result for the Desert Foxes, at a ground where they are almost invincible, ahead of facing Belgium, South Korea and Russia in Group H during June's football showpiece event.

Football: Algeria win, Ivory Coast snatch draw

Algeria won, Ivory Coast drew and Ghana lost as African qualifiers prepared for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil with warm-up games Wednesday. Striker El-Hilal Soudani put Algeria ahead in first-half stoppage-time and Inter Milan midfielder Saphir Taider added a second goal for a 2-0 victory over Slovenia in Blida. It was an encouraging result for the Desert Foxes, at a ground where they are almost invincible, ahead of facing Belgium, South Korea and Russia in Group H during June's football showpiece event.
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