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Football: MLS to spread wings in Atlanta

Major League Soccer is set to take flight in Atlanta, the city the NFL's Falcons and NBA's Hawks already call home. In fact, the expansion club awarded to Atlanta on Wednesday -- which will be the 22nd MLS franchise -- will be owned by Falcons owner Arthur Blank and will play in a state-of-the-art retractable roof stadium that will be shared with the NFL team. "We are thrilled to welcome Atlanta to Major League Soccer as our 22nd team," MLS Commissioner Don Garber said in a statement announcing the awarding of the Atlanta franchise.

RugbyL: Australian league moves on dangerous tackles

Australia's National Rugby League told its match review committee Wednesday to take a hard line against players who lift opponents into positions where head or neck injuries may occur. The move follows a review of the first six rounds of the season and comes after Newcastle Knights forward Alex McKinnon was left with a devastating spinal injury following a lifting tackle. "If you lift a player and put him in a dangerous position you will be charged unless you pull out quickly and return the player to a safe position," said NRL head of football Todd Greenberg.

RugbyL: Aussie ace relishing first Wigan St Helens derby

Wigan Warriors full-back Matt Bowen has experienced almost everything in his glittering 13-year career - but a Good Friday local derby against St Helens is breaking new ground for the full-back. Having joined the defending Super League champions ahead of this season from the North Queensland Cowboys, Bowen is the first to admit that he has taken a while to settle. Indeed Shaun Wane's side are only now beginning to hit their stride, last weekend's win over the London Broncos taking them into the top four for the first time this season.

RugbyL: Betts laments second-best Widnes

Widnes Vikings' superb start to the season came to an end in the south of France on Saturday and head coach Denis Betts admitted his side were second best all over the park against Catalan Dragons. Betts has master-minded a fantastic start to the Super League campaign with five wins from the first six rounds putting them in the top four. By contrast the Dragons have been struggling so far, down in 12th in the table but Elliott Whitehead grabbed a hat-trick while former Cronulla Shark Ben Pomeroy grabbed two in the 42-20 victory.

RugbyL: Super League table

Super League table after Saturday's match (played, won, drawn, lost, points for, points against, total points): St Helens 8 8 0 0 256 124 16 Leeds 8 6 1 1 248 72 13 Castleford 8 6 0 2 251 140 12 Wigan 7 5 0 2 189 138 10 Widnes 7 5 0 2 171 146 10 Hull 8 4 0 4 194 142 8 Warrington 8 4 0 4 159 151 8 Salford 8 4 0 4 161 200 8 Hull K R 8 3 1 4 163 178 7 Huddersfield 8 2 2 4 180 177 6

RugbyL: Super League results

Super League results on Saturday: Catalan Dragons 42 Widnes 20 Friday Bradford 24 Salford 38 Castleford 28 St Helens 30 Leeds 42 Wakefield 6 Warrington 12 Hull K R 25 Wigan 36 London Broncos 14 Thursday Hull 30 Huddersfield 6 afp

RugbyL: Widnes slump in Dragons den

Former Cronulla Shark Ben Pomeroy crossed twice while Elliott Whitehead bagged a hat-trick as Catalan Dragons got back to winning ways with a 42-20 victory over Widnes Vikings. Vincent Duport also grabbed a double as the Dragons claimed only their second win of the Super League season but stay down at 12th in the table. Victory for Denis Betts' in-form Widnes side could have moved them up to second in the table but despite late scores from Lloyd White and Jack Owens they were always up against in Perpignan.

RugbyU: ARU rule Folau unfit to play for Waratahs

The Australian Rugby Union has ruled Wallaby fullback Israel Folau out of the NSW Waratahs' Super Rugby match against the Western Force this weekend following medical advice. The ARU said late Friday that the rare decision was taken by its chief medical officer Warren McDonald regarding Folau's throat injury and was based on specialist medical advice. Reports said the ARU's move was unprecedented in Super Rugby and was enacted after the Waratahs had selected Folau to make his return against the Force in Perth on Saturday.

RugbyL: Super League results

Super League results on Friday: Bradford 24 Salford 38 Castleford 28 St Helens 30 Leeds 42 Wakefield 6 Warrington 12 Hull K R 25 Wigan 36 London Broncos 14 Playing Saturday Catalan Dragons v Widnes (1330GMT) Played Thursday Hull 30 Huddersfield 6 afp

RugbyL: Super League table

Super League table after Friday's matches (played, won, drawn, lost, points for, points against, total points): St Helens 8 8 0 0 256 124 16 Leeds 8 6 1 1 248 72 13 Castleford 8 6 0 2 251 140 12 Wigan 7 5 0 2 189 138 10 Widnes 6 5 0 1 151 104 10 Hull 8 4 0 4 194 142 8 Warrington 8 4 0 4 159 151 8 Salford 8 4 0 4 161 200 8 Hull K R 8 3 1 4 163 178 7 Huddersfield 8 2 2 4 180 177 6
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