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West Ham move home to the Olympic Stadium in August at a cost of £2.5million ($3.54 million) per year, it was revealed on Thursday.

The Premier League side have taken up a 99-year tenancy agreement with The London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC).

West Ham's new landlords will meet running costs for the centrepiece of the London 2012 Games for areas such as the pitch, goalposts, floodlighting and corner flags.

The stadium is also to host the 2017 IAAF and IPC Athletics World Championships and there is a 50-year agreement for British Athletics to use the venue each July.

West Ham won the bid to be lead tenants of the 60,000-seat arena ahead of Tottenham and Leyton Orient.

 

The transformation of the venue from its Olympic and Paralympic condition cost £272 million, with West Ham contributing £15 million.

The Hammers will pay an annual rent of £2.5 million for 25 matches - or £1.25 million if they fall out of the top flight - with a £100,000 fee for any additional match.

 

 

Former England footballer Adam Johnson has launched an appeal against his six-year prison sentence for sexual activity with an infatuated teenage fan, it was announced on Tuesday.

Johnson, once a winger with Sunderland and Manchester City, was jailed last month following an incident with a 15-year-old female supporter in his Range Rover in County Durham, north-east England, last year.

A statement on the Adam Johnson's Appeal Fight page on Facebook, run by his sister Faye, said: "Adam's appeal against his sentence has now been lodged!"

"Thanks everyone for your support it means a lot! X"

Judge Jonathan Rose, passing sentence, said the victim - who cannot be named for legal reasons - had been a Sunderland fan who would wait after matches to take pictures of her "favourite player", Johnson, who had known her age.

 

 

 

Nick Blackwell said he was in the “toughest fight of his life” after waking from an induced coma following his British middleweight title defeat by Chris Eubank Jr.

Blackwell, 25, collapsed shortly after his tenth-round stoppage loss to Eubank Jr at London’s Wembley Arena on March 26.

He was then taken to London’s St Mary’s Hospital with a bleed on the skull before doctors placed him in an induced coma.

Tuesday saw Blackwell make his first public comment since the bout as he posted a message thanking well-wishers for their support on his brother Daniel’s Facebook account.

“Just want to say a massive thank you to everyone who has been there for me, all my friends and family, those who wished me well and those who raised money for me,” Blackwell said.

 

 

Tyson Fury will defend his World Boxing Association (WBA) and World Boxing Organisation (WBO) heavyweight titles in a re-match against Wladimir Klitschko in Manchester on July 9, the British boxer's trainer and uncle Peter Fury announced Friday.

Fury senior tweeted that the rematch would be confirmed later on Friday, saying: "(On) 9th July Tyson Fury vs Klitschko is coming to Manchester Uk.

"Official announcement coming 12 noon (UK time, 1100 GMT)."

Hamburg-based Klitschko lost his WBA, IBF, IBO and WBO belts to Fury on points in Duesseldorf last November as the Ukrainian suffered his first defeat in more than a decade.

Fury, from Manchester, northern England, was stripped of the IBF belt for agreeing to face Klitschko in a re-match.

Talks, however, proved protracted. Fury suffered a minor back injury last month and recently said that he thought the delay was due to Klitschko's hope he will gain weight in the time between bouts.

 

 

England's Joe Marler has apologised publicly for calling Wales prop Samson Lee a "gypsy boy" as he insisted he was not a racist ahead of a World Rugby misconduct hearing on Tuesday.

 

 

Harlequins front-row Marler was reprimanded by England coach Eddie Jones for his comment to Lee, who is from a traveller community background, during a 25-21 win over Wales at Twickenham last month but escaped any disciplinary action from Six Nations tournament chiefs.

 

 

"I'm not a racist," Marler tweeted Monday. "What I said to Samson was out of order and wrong and I am sorry it was said, we shook hands at the end of the game and looked to move on.

 

 

"Whatever happens to me tomorrow I will accept," the 25-year-old prop added.

 

 

"I'm sorry to anyone who was offended, saying it was in the 'heat of the moment' isn't an excuse, but one comment, one mistake, does not make me a racist.

 

 

"My wife, kids, family and friends (yes, I do have some friends) know this," insisted the 42-times capped Marler.

 

 

"Thanks to the people who have supported me and have understood that I made a mistake and sorry again to the people I offended."

 

 

Russia is "changing deckchairs on the Titanic" rather than working to overturn an international ban on its athletes, ex-World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) president Dick Pound told AFP on Wednesday.

Russian athletes were banned from competing internationally last year after an independent commission chaired by Pound found evidence of state-sponsored doping in the country.

The country still hopes to participate at this year's Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, but Pound says that there remains a "wall of denial" about the extent of doping in Russian sport.

"We said at the time, you're not going to like much of what we say about athletics in your country," the Canadian lawyer told AFP during the Tackling Doping in Sport Conference at London's Twickenham Stadium.

 

 

Cycling bosses are investigating the possibility of testing riders in the middle of road races as they continue to combat the threat of mechanical doping in the sport.

Belgian teenager Femke Van den Driessche was discovered to have a motor inside the frame of her bike at the recent cyclo-cross World Championships, a revelation that sparked speculation that the problem may be more widespread.

UCI president Brian Cookson insists that the world governing body is on the ball when it comes to "technological fraud" and even considering drastic new testing procedures.

"The technology that we have now allows testing perhaps not literally on the move, but it's very flexible, it's very lightweight," said Cookson, who is at the track World Championships in London.

"It can even be attached to an iPhone, certainly an iPad. We will be testing before, after and, if necessary, during (races) from time to time.

"We have an open mind at looking at the opportunities for that. We will maybe have a commissaire on a motorbike who will stop with a rider who is changing a bike.

 

Boxing idol Muhammad Ali's gloves from the "most important sporting event in history" and pieces of his childhood home are among the artefacts at an exhibition in London honouring "the greatest".

The vast show opening on Friday at London's 02 Arena traces the story of the boxer from his childhood, through his glittering and brutal career to his elevation as a cultural and political icon.

The 100 items at the "I Am The Greatest" show include one of his robes, embroidered with his famous "float like a butterfly, sting like a bee" mantra and a dazzling rhinestone and jewelled boxing gown given to him by rock'n'roll legend Elvis Presley in 1973.

Visitors will also be able to see the wooden doorframe from his childhood home in Louisville, Kentucky, and white boots used during his fight with Jimmy Young with soles worn from repeated "Ali shuffles".

On show in the city where they became infamous are Ali's gloves from his bout against British fighter Henry Cooper at Wembley Stadium in 1963, the left one carrying a large rip.

 

Real Madrid star James Rodriguez has been fined 10,400 euros ($11,343) for fleeing from police after being caught speeding at 200 kilometres per hour, a government delegate confirmed on Tuesday.

The Colombian was followed by police to Madrid's Valdebebas training ground in the north of the city on January 1 after being caught speeding by an unmarked police car.

"He has been sanctioned for not obeying the agents that tried to detain him on various occasions," Concepecion Dancausa said in a press conference.

On top of the fine, the 24-year-old faces a separate judicial process for speeding.

 

 

 

 

Brazilian midfielder Alex Teixeira became China's third record signing in just over a week on Friday when Jiangsu Suning snapped him up for 50 million euros ($56 million) -- following earlier interest from English giants Liverpool.

China's latest monster move came only three days after Guangzhou Evergrande paid 42 million euros for Atletico Madrid's Jackson Martinez, and nine days after Jiangsu's 28-million-euro purchase of Ramires from Chelsea.

The hat-trick of record deals pushed China's spending in its current transfer period, which closes on February 26, to 258.9 million euros, higher than the 247.3 million euros spent by English clubs in the now-closed January transfer window, according to the transfermarkt website which tracks the sport's commercial dealings.

 

Teixeira's signing on a four-year deal from Ukraine's Shakhtar Donetsk also shows China now has the clout to attract players in the prime of their careers. The 26-year-old had been linked with a move to Liverpool, one of the world's top teams.

"Everyone has always known that I want to stay in Europe and transfer to a club in the English league. But unfortunately all the offers I received from them weren't serious and didn't contain anything specific," Teixeira told the Shakhtar Donetsk website.

"I now received a serious offer from China. I am of course moving there."