Fiorentina forward Kevin-Prince Boateng has had enough of racism in football and claims he will be starting his “own task force” next year. The 32-year-old is “sick of it” and claims clubs should be “punished with a points deduction” system if they can’t make their fans behave in Italian stadiums. “It’s not enough to prevent the access of part of the fans after the insults towards [Mario] Balotelli,” he told the Corriere della Sera. “I hope the public has learned something and no longer replicate certain behaviour. “We need to ban them. The clubs need to pay for their fans’ behaviour. And if necessary, punish them with a point deduction.” After a speech at a UN meeting on racial discrimination in sports, Boateng is not happy with the actions carried out by the clubs. “It was an important day in my life. But after that, what has been done to stop the trend?” he added. “There’s been a task force, summarized by a series of meetings and ideas. The “No to Racism” campaign in the Champions League is not enough. “I’ll do it myself in 2020. I’m organising my task force with events involving other players. “I’m sick of it. People don’t understand how Balotelli, Boateng or [Kalidou] Koulibaly feel when they get home. “We are alone. I go crazy when I hear comments like, ‘so what, you earn €5m’. There are scars on you that you can’t erase.” Watch Serie A live in the UK on Premier Sports for just £11.99 per month including live LaLiga, Eredivisie, Scottish Cup Football and more. Visit: https://subscribe.premiersports.tv/
Rangers will look to respond to Celtic’s 3-0 win over Dundee when they travel to face St Johnstone at McDiarmid Park on Sunday. Steven Gerrard’s men fell to third in the league on Saturday as Aberdeen leapfrogged them, while there is now a four-point gap to bridge between themselves and Celtic before the Old Firm game on Saturday.Although that encounter is the main focus of the week, the Gers cannot allow their concentration to waver in Perth or for an awkward midweek meeting with Hibs at Ibrox. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Man Utd ready to spend big on Sancho and Haaland in January Who is Marcus Thuram? Lilian’s son who is top of the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! Game St Johnstone vs Rangers Date Sunday, December 23 Time 12:15pm GMT / 7:15am ET TV Channel, Live Stream & How To Watch In the United States (US), the game can be streamed via B/R Live. US TV channel Online stream N/A B/R Live In the UK, the game will be shown on BT Sport 1 and can be streamed through the BT Sport Live app. UK TV channel Online stream BT Sport 1 BT Sport Live Squads & Team News Position St Johnstone squad Goalkeepers Clark, Hurst Defenders Shaughnessy, Anderson, Kerr, Gordon, Easton, Tansfer, Foster, Comrie Midfielders Nydam, Davidson, Callachan, McClean, McCann, Wotherspoon, Alston, Craig, Swanson, Scougall Forwards Kennedy, Watt, Kane, McMillan St Johnstone go into this encounter without goalkeeper Conor Mitchell, defender Brian Easton and midfielder Drey Wright, all of whom would have expected to start the game.Danny Swanson and Blair Alston are set to come into the midfield, while Jason Kerr returned to full training late in the week and should start.Possible St Johnstone starting XI: Clark; Foster, Kerr, Shaughnessy, Tanser; Swanson, Alston, Davidson, Wotherspoon; Watt, Kennedy Position Rangers squad Goalkeepers McGregor, Foderingham, Robbie McCrorie Defenders Tavernier, Goldson, Flanagan, Ross McCrorie, Katic, Bradley, Barisic, Worrall, McAuley Midfielders Jack, Ejaria, Halliday, Coulibaly, Arfield, Kelly, Grezda Forwards Candeias, Morelos, Lafferty, Middleton Steven Gerrard has the familiar trio of long-term absentees – Lee Wallace, Jamie Murphy and Graeme Dorrans – to contend with. Additionally, Ryan Kent will miss the match and Scott Arfield is something of a worry, leaving the midfield somewhat depleted.In defence, meanwhile, centre-backs Gareth McAuley and Connor Goldson are both worries, which could open the door to a return for Nikola Katic.Ryan Jack will start after signing a fresh contract with the club that will run until 2021.Possible Rangers starting XI: McGregor; Tavernier, Goldson, Worrall, Barisic; Coulibaly, Jack, McCrorie; Candeias, Morelos, GrezdaBetting & Match Odds Rangers are priced as 11/20 favourites to win this game by bet365. St Johnstone are considered a 5/1 bet to win, while a draw is 3/1.Click here to see more offers for the game, including goalscoring markets, correct score predictions and more.Match Preview Rangers might have fallen four points behind Celtic in the Scottish Premiership standings, but they still have designs on overtaking their great rivals before New Year.Victory over St Johnstone on Sunday would open the door to the potential of regaining top spot in the final matches of 2018, in which they face Hibs on Boxing Day before tackling Celtic at Ibrox on Saturday.No slips, however, can be afforded against the Perth outfit, with assistant manager Gary McAllister acutely aware of the danger such a fixture can pose.“Barring their little blip against Motherwell, St Johnstone have been on good form,” he said. “They’re keeping clean sheets. It never ceases to amaze me what Tommy Wright does through at St Johnstone, very rarely he gets money to go and build his squad or add to his squad.“It’s the same players and they’ve done extremely well so it’s a tough opponent. We go up to Perth and it’s going to be difficult, I think it always is when we go through there. So it’s game on, and then obviously it’s Hibs coming back to Ibrox.”St Johnstone had been on an eight-match undefeated run before losing 2-1 to Motherwell at home last weekend, with their defence especially impressive as they had kept seven cleansheets in those games.However, they lost 5-1 at Ibrox when the sides previously met this season.“I know the idea of revenge is used a lot in football but if we need revenge as motivation then we need to take a look at ourselves,” Wright said.“Our focus is all on getting three points and to do that we’re going to have to learn from the game back in September.“We created chances which was obviously positive but we were too open and we were punished for it.“We’re keen to finish this year strongly before the break so we want to pick up another three points on Sunday and that’s our main focus.”Eighth in the table, Saints find themselves in a battle for the top six, but an upset victory would draw them to within four points of Rangers with a game in hand.
Australia’s spin consultant Sridharan Sriram, who has been credited for Steeve O’Keefe’s sensational performance in the first Test against India, feels it’s not the name of a coach but his inputs that earn him respect from players.Sriram, who played 8 ODIs for India during early part of the last decade, is considered the guiding force behind left-arm spinner O’Keefe’s match-winning figures of 12 for 70 in Australia’s 333-run win in the first Test against India.”I don’t think the name really matters, does it? How does a name matter? I mean, I come in and if I talk sense they listen to me, if I talk bull**** they don’t. It’s as simple as that,” Sriram said on Monday when asked if he has faced problems of acceptability considering he is not a big name. (Steve O’Keefe akin to reliable Korean car: Monty Panesar)”I think it’s taken time… They have really been open. That’s the best thing about this Australian team. They have been open to listening first. And then obviously I made sense a little bit and they started listening and they started trying out things in the nets and saw that it worked for them and I think that’s how it’s gone,” said Sriram.”I have a chat with everyone, it is not just the spinners, that is the freedom I get from my head coach which is amazing so I can chat to anyone if I feel there is something they should do, I go up to them and suggest and it is up to them if they implement it or not, some say no some say yes, I am willing to try and prolong the conversation,”advertisementSriram sounded practical in his approach. (India frugal with praise for Pune tormentor Steve O’Keefe)Sriram said O’Keefe’s success should be attributed to his “preparedness” and “willingness to experiment”.Asked what exactly did O’Keefe change, Sriram said: “Not necessarily change, more I would use the word adapt. Because India is such a big country, there’s no one-stop solution. If you say ‘this will work’, it is not going to work. So you have just got to adapt on the go. You have got to see what works for you on that day.”And so I think that’s where O’Keefe really scored, because he was well-prepared. He was prepared to experiment, he was prepared to sort of try different things in the nets. Which goes back to our time in Chennai in 2015. So, I think he knew that he had to come with an open mind for every day of a Test Match. What works on day one may not work on day three. He knows that. I think that’s his biggest strength,” said Sriram.