Cost of London 2012 aquatics venue rises

»The cost of the 2012 Olympic aquatics centre has risen, but savings made elsewhere could see a final overall budget underspend of up to 500 million pounds ($807.9 million), government figures showed on Tuesday.

The wave-shaped venue, designed by Zaha Hadid, is expected to need an extra 11 million pounds to keep construction on track after problems with the roof and to meet strict poolside air temperature guidelines, the latest quarterly figures showed.

The cost has been on the rise since the original estimate of 75 million pounds, and now stands at 268 million pounds.

But the overall Olympic bill is expected to stay within the 9.3 billion pound budget, with the share of the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) -- the body responsible for getting the Games ready -- expected to come in at 7.23 billion pounds.

“The ODA has continued to drive down costs and deliver savings despite this being the most complex year in construction terms,” said Olympics minister Hugh Robertson.

‘Sao Paulo will host 2014 Cup opener’

»Brazilian 2014 World Cup organisers are confident Sao Paulo will stage the opening game of the tournament even though plans for its stadium have yet to be approved.
Ricardo Teixeira, president of both the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) and the 2014 local organising committee, initially said on Monday that he was certain that the tournament would kick off in Latin America's largest city.

“We have absolute certainty, and we desire that the World Cup opening will be in Sao Paulo,” Teixeira said after a meeting with Sao Paulo state governor Alberto Goldman and mayor Gilberto Kassab.

However, Teixeira later said in a statement that plans to use a new stadium built by the Corinthians club for the match had to be approved by soccer's governing body FIFA. Corinthians also said that it was early days.

Angry Bulgarian fans block road

»Bulgarian club Cherno More Varna's 4-0 defeat in the domestic championship on Sunday sparked a Hollywood-style highway chase, a midnight crisis meeting and the sacking of three players.

Cherno More fans were so disgusted by their team's performance against Black Sea rivals Kaliakra that they set up a road blockade on the 64-km trip back to Varna.

“We wanted to hear their explanation for their pitiful performance,” a Cherno More fan told local media. “Well, we're ready to show them some alternative methods of communication too.”

The club bus, escorted by police, faced some 200 angry supporters chanting for change when it reached Cherno More's stadium.

Frustrated fans insulted the players as they entered the stadium to meet the owners while Cherno More ultras attacked the bus with stones and bottles, smashing the windscreen.

Iniesta presents Jarque memorial shirt

»Spain's World Cup-winning midfielder Andres Iniesta has presented Espanyol with the shirt he used to remember the club's late captain Dani Jarque after scoring the winner in this year's final.

Jarque, Iniesta's close friend, collapsed and died aged 26 on a pre-season tour of Italy in August 2009.

After scoring his dramatic goal against Netherlands late in extra time in Johannesburg in July, Iniesta tore off his shirt to reveal a white vest inscribed with the words "Dani Jarque siempre con nosotros", or "Dani Jarque always with us".

At a special ceremony at Espanyol's stadium on Thursday, Iniesta, who plays for the club's city rivals Barcelona, presented the shirt to president Daniel Sanchez Llibre and appeared close to tears when making a short speech.

"It's going to be difficult not to get upset. It pains me a great deal to give this shirt away even though I think this is the best place for it," Iniesta said. "I scored the goal but Dani will also be remembered."

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