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Former FIFA president Sepp Blatter of Switzerland and two of his cronies are facing new charges from the FIFA ethics committee. The organization said it has already opened formal proceedings against Jerome Valcke, the former secretary general of FIFA, as well Blatter and Markus Kattner, the former finance director. The proceedings were triggered after it was discovered that the three men allegedly took payments of several million dollars in their contracts after other senior officials approved them.
Blatter is already serving a six-year ban from the sport for allegedly making illegal payments to former UEFA president Michel Platini of France, who was also banned for several years. FIFA alleges that Blatter, Valcke and the recently-fired Kattner conspired to pay themselves huge sums of money from the profits of World Cup tournaments. According to FIFA lawyers, the three men coordinated together in an effort to enrich themselves. Prosecutors claim the current investigation is focused on corruption, conflict of interest, bribery and accepting gifts. Kattner is also being investigated for breach of confidentiality.
Tiger Woods announced on September 7th that he plans on returning to competitive golf in October at the Safeway Open in Napa. The event, which runs from Oct. 13th to the 16th, is the season opener to the 2016/17 PGA Tour. If he’s able to play, it will be the first competitive round of golf for Woods in the past 14 months. The world’s former number one golfer has been out of action for more than a year due to back surgery, but claims he’s almost finished with rehab and is almost ready to play. However, he still admits there’s a chance his plans may fall through.
Four American Olympic swimmers have been punished for telling the media they had been robbed at gunpoint during the recent Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Ryan Lochte, Jimmy Feigen, Gunnar Bentz and Jack Conger were all banned by the USA Swimming and the United States Olympic Committee for varying degrees of time. The 32-year-old Lochte, who first claimed to have been robbed, received the worst punishment as he was banned for 10 months and given 20 hours worth of community service to perform. This means he will miss the both the 2017 world and national a swimming championships.
Former NFL quarterback and 2007 Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow was signed to a minor league contract by the New York Mets of Major League Baseball (MLB) on September 8th. The 29-year-old will kick off his pro baseball career in Port St. Lucie, Florida on Sept. 19th where he’s been assigned to the fall instructional league. According to Sandy Alderson, the Mets’ general manager, the signing was based on Tebow’s baseball potential rather than as a publicity stunt. Tebow’s contract details weren’t released, but it’s been confirmed that he’ll be paid a signing bonus of $100,000.
Landon Donovan, who is the all-time leading scorer for the American men’s national soccer team with 57 goals, has ended his short retirement and is returning to the sport. However, Donovan’s return will likely be strictly for league action as he’s returning to the Los Angeles Galaxy of North America’s Major League Soccer (MLS). Donovan retired after helping Los Angeles win the MLS Cup in 2014 and is expected to join the club immediately as it pushes to make the playoffs. Along with being the U.S. leading scorer internationally, Donovan is also leads the MLS all time in goals and assists.
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