FIFA to hold racism talks with Russia
FIFA will seek assurances from Russia's 2018 World Cup leadership next week that they are taking action to eradicate racism from matches, while insisting ahead of talks that the country is not at risk of losing the tournament.
The problem of racism at matches in Russia was highlighted during a globally televised Champions League match last Wednesday when CSKA Moscow fans hurled abuse at Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure.
"We are dealing now with actual problems," FIFA President Sepp Blatter said yesterday in London. "We are not dealing with the problems that may happen somewhere in the world. It is the question of racism today, and I'm dealing with that today."
French clubs to skip games in tax protest
Furious over a government tax plan to impose a super-tax on players' salaries, French football clubs have unanimously agreed to scrap matches over one weekend at the end of November as a protest.
France's professional clubs held an extraordinary general meeting Thursday to decide the next steps in their campaign against the government's plan to implement a so-called 75 per cent tax law on income above 1 million euros ($1.38 million) per year. The law would mainly affect the clubs rather than the players, as it is geared towards making employers bear the tax burden.
Under the decision announced Thursday by Jean-Pierre Louvel, president of the Union of Professional Football Clubs, the league round scheduled for November 29-December 2 will not be played.
Serena takes WTA title
Serena Williams capped a career year in style yesterday, earning her 11th title of 2013 by coming from behind to beat Li Na 2-6, 6-3, 6-0 for her second straight WTA Championships crown.
Williams became the eighth woman to win 11 or more titles in a year and the first since Martina Hingis had 12 in 1997. She is also the first to repeat as champion at the season-ending WTA Championships since Justine Henin in 2007.
The victory brought Williams' prize money total for the year to $12,385,572. The only player, male or female, to earn more in a year was Novak Djokovic with $12,803,737 in 2012 and $12,619,803 in 2011.
Williams has won 78 of 82 matches this year and will finish the year as the top-ranked player for the third time in her career after 2002 and 2009.