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A 21-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of assault after Sheffield Wednesday goalkeeper Chris Kirkland was hit by a fan during a Championship game.

The incident was one of a number of ugly scenes at Hillsborough during the 1-1 draw with Leeds United which was televised on Friday night.

Gloucestershire Police said the man was arrested in Cheltenham. A spokesman said: "The investigation is being led by South Yorkshire Police. The man currently remains in police custody."

Kirkland, who has played for England, was shoved to the ground moments after conceding an equaliser in the 76th minute. A hooligan ran from the Leeds fans onto the pitch and pushed Kirkland in the face, before running back into the crowd.

The incident was caught on camera by Sky Sports who were broadcasting the derby game, yet the suspect was not arrested until Sunday. Quickly the thug was identified on social media sites with hundreds of fans joining in the condemnation. A mobile phone number was even posted, supposedly belonging to the suspect.

Ten-man Liverpool were left searching for their first Premier League win under new manager Brendan Rodgers as arch-rivals Manchester United came from behind to win 2-1 at an emotional Anfield on Sunday.

This was Liverpool's first home match since an independent report cleared their fans of any responsibility for the 1989 Hillsborough disaster where 96 of the Merseysiders' supporters were crushed to death during an FA Cup semi-final.

Liverpool played more than half the match a man down after Jonjo Shelvey was sent off in the 39th minute for a two-footed challenge on Jonny Evans.

But they still took a 46th minute lead when captain Steven Gerrard -- whose 10-year-old cousin, Jon-Paul Gilhooley, was the youngest fan to die at Hillsborough -- volleyed home from near the penalty spot.

However, United only had to wait five minutes for an equaliser when Rafael curled in a superb shot from the right-hand side of the Liverpool area.

And with 15 minutes to go United -- who had missed their last three penalties -- were awarded a spot-kick when Liverpool defender Glen Johnson brought down Antonio Valencia.

There was a delay of several minutes as Liverpool defender Daniel Agger received treatment for an injury before Dutch striker Robin van Persie beat goalkeeper Pepe Reina.

Victory saw United move to within a point of leaders Chelsea while defeat left Liverpool languishing in the bottom three.

"It is a great result for us but we did not play well," United manager Sir Alex Ferguson told Sky Sports.

"In the first half Liverpool dominated us, in the second half we had better possession but they had 10 men, we can't take great credit for that."

Rodgers hailed his "heroic" side and said decisions had gone against them.

"I thought the players were heroic in terms of performance and the spirit," he said. "They were brilliant and didn't get what they deserved.

"Jonjo Shelvey, if he gets sent off then Jonny Evans has to go as well. I think both players' feet are off the floor.

The London Paralympics end on Sunday with a celebration of 11 days of elite sporting action, amid claims of a "seismic" shift in social attitudes towards people with disabilities but hopes for greater inclusion.

As the last medals were won, attention shifted to the closing ceremony on Sunday evening, which the show's artistic director has promised will be an emotional farewell to the Paralympic flame and a musical celebration of the human spirit.

Organisers billed the Games as the biggest and most high-profile in Paralympic history, with more media attention than ever before and a record 4,200 athletes from more than 160 countries, including for the first time reclusive North Korea.

London 2012 chief Sebastian Coe said that with 2.7 million tickets sold, packed venues and vocal crowds, the Games had not only created a global plaform for elite disabled sport but also helped change perceptions of people with disabilities. 

"I really genuinely do think that we have had a seismic effect on shifting public attitudes," he told a news conference at Olympic Park in east London.

"I don't think people will ever see sport in the same way again. I don't think they will ever see disability in the same way again. We have talked about what we can do rather than what we can't do."

One stand-out performer of the Games was British wheelchair racer David Weir, who on Sunday was roared to victory in the men's marathon around the streets of central London for his fourth gold.

Australia beat Canada for "murderball" -- wheelchair rugby -- gold, while Russia were out for revenge over neighbours Ukraine for defeat in the seven-a-side football final in Beijing four years ago.

The final golds conclude the action, which notably saw the Games' most high-profile athlete Oscar Pistorius stripped of his 100m and 200m crowns but then conclude the track and field programme with a stunning victory in the 400m.

But new stars have been found to challenge the South African "Blade Runner", who made history last month by becoming the first double-amputee to compete at the Olympics, and the focus of the Games has shifted away from disability.

"I think people are going to look back at this Paralympic Games and for the first time really, truly believe that Paralympic sport is not just inspirational, it's hardcore sport," said Pistorius.

"It's full of triumph, sometimes it has disappointment, but that's what we look for in sport. We want it to be competitive and that's what it's been about." 

London was awarded the Olympics and Paralympics in 2005 and has had to face doubts in particular over the cost of the project, security and whether the city's creaking transport system could cope with a massive influx of visitors.

But the efficient running of both events and the public response has defied naysayers who predicted chaos and a lack of enthusiasm.

The president of the International Paralympic Committee, Philip Craven, said the challenge was to maintain interest between now and the next Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 2016 -- as well as increase participation around the world.

"We have to really concentrate on getting every country doing more Paralympic sport," he added.

The daughter of German-Jewish neurologist Ludwig Guttmann, who organised the first recognised sporting event for disabled people in southern England in 1948, also said there was more work to do, despite improvements since her father's time.

 

London 2012 chairman Lord Coe believes it is within the "wit and wisdom" of decision-makers to keep a track and field legacy at the Olympic Stadium.

It has yet to be finalised what to do with the 80,000-seat stadium after London 2012, with Premier League outfit West Ham among four bidders interested in becoming tenants.

The process has been hit by a series of delays and legal wrangles while there has also been a focus on keeping to the original promise of an athletics legacy at the venue.

Lord Coe remains confident that a track and field legacy will remain at the stadium and believes there will be an outcome that works for all parties.

He said: "I only tend to interfere when I get irritated about things.

 

Serena Williams has overpowered every rival at the US Open, showing no mercy to a world-class field that has been unable to slow an American juggernaut that appears bound for her 15th Grand Slam title.

The three-time US Open champion has dropped only 19 games in six rounds, never suffering a break of serve while blasting a tournament-best 50 aces in only six hours and 37 minutes on the Flushing Meadows hardcourts.

And US fourth seed Williams, the reigning Wimbledon and Olympic champion, owns a 9-1 career record against World No. 1 Victoria Azarenka, her admittedly outmatched opponent in Saturday's championship match at Arthur Ashe Stadium.

"If you look at our record it says it all," Azarenka said. "I haven't won in any last meetings so I definitely need to find something to surprise her because she's in a great form, feeling really confident right now.

"She has everything on her side."

Williams, who was upset in last year's US Open final by Australian Samantha Stosur, is trying to match her older sister Venus and Steffi Graf as the only women to claim the Wimbledon-Olympic-US Open treble in the same year.

"It will probably be the best summer I've ever had," Williams said. "If you win the Olympics and Wimbledon and this, it would be kind of cool. So, yeah, it will be awesome."

Williams won her first Grand Slam title at the 1999 US Open at age 17 and hoisted the trophy in 2002 and 2008 as well. She recalled those on-court celebrations as motivation this time after falling one match short last year.

"It was an amazing feeling. I definitely want to reach that again," Williams said. "I definitely want to hold that trophy and to lift it up."

Azarenka never went deeper than the US Open fourth round until now.

 

Oscar Pistorius has apologised for the timing of his comments about the running blades used by T44 200 metres gold medallist Alan Fonteles Oliveira immediately after Sunday night's race.

The South African hit out at the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) for failing to act over the length of some athletes' blades after Oliveira, wearing noticeably longer ones, came from way back to pip him at the line.

The Brazilian took gold in 21.45 seconds, leaving Pistorius to settle for silver, coming home in 21.52secs with stunned quiet from the 80,000 spectators greeting the result.

In a statement released to Press Association Sport, Pistorius said: "I would never want to detract from another athletes' moment of triumph and I want to apologise for the timing of my comments after yesterday's race."

The statement continued: "I do believe that there is an issue here and I welcome the opportunity to discuss with the IPC but I accept that raising these concerns immediately as I stepped off the track was wrong. That was Alan's moment and I would like to put on record the respect I have for him. I am a proud Paralympian and believe in the fairness of sport. I am happy to work with the IPC who obviously share these aims."

Pistorius, who was the reigning T44 200m champion, cannot alter the length of his blades if he wants to continue to compete in non-disabled competition because they have to conform to IAAF regulations.

And he claimed he was not competing on a level playing field, even though the new blades, which are about four inches taller than those used by Pistorius, are within the rules.

He said on Sunday night: "I've never seen a guy come back from eight metres (behind) on the 100m mark to overtake me on the finish line. The guys are just running ridiculous times and they're able to do so. We've known (about the longer blades) for about a month. I've brought it up with the IPC but nothing's been done about it. I believe in the fairness of sport, I believe in running on the right length."

Ireland's Jason Smyth on Saturday retained his T13 100m title, breaking his own world record in the process to become the fastest Paralympian in history.

The 25-year-old, who trains with US sprint star Tyson Gay and is visually impaired, clocked 10.46sec to break the 10.54sec mark he set in Friday's qualifying heats.

Luis Felipe Guttierez of Cuba won silver in 11.02sec, one-hundredth of a second ahead of South African bronze medallist Jonathan Ntutu.

Smyth's time is 0.03sec faster than Florence Griffith-Joyner's non-disabled women's record over the distance.

German club Stuttgart qualified for the group phase of the Europa League on Tuesday after a 1-1 draw at Dinamo Moscow gave them a 3-1 aggregate win in their play-off tie.

Vedad Ibisevic opened the scoring for the visitors in the 64th minute, with Dinamo -- who are bottom of the Russian top flight after six matches -- equalising through Russian international Aleksandr Kokorin with 13 minutes to play.

The rest of the play-off round second legs take place on Thursday, when Liverpool, Newcastle United, Inter Milan, Lazio, Marseille, Athletic Bilbao and Sporting Lisbon will be among the teams bidding to go through.

 

Sir Alex Ferguson will wait until the last minute before deciding whether new striker Robin van Persie is fit enough to make his debut in Manchester United's Premier League opener at Everton on Monday.

Van Persie, signed for £24 million from Arsenal, rushed back from international duty with Holland in midweek to undergo a medical in Manchester that went into the early hours of Friday before completing the most eye-catching Premier League transfer of the year.

After such a hectic schedule, and just a handful of training sessions with his new team-mates, United manager Ferguson is uncertain if he should throw van Persie straight into his starting line-up at Goodison Park.

"He hasn't played much. We are going to assess him the next couple of days and chat with him, see how he feels himself," Ferguson said.

"Adrenalin will help, if I choose to start him, but I think it's important he had a training session on Friday morning and hopefully the weekend will give me a good idea on whether he should start or I should put him on the bench."

Van Persie's arrival gives Ferguson, who could already call on Wayne Rooney, Javier Hernandez and Danny Welbeck, an impressive collection of attacking talent and the Scot believes Welbeck is just one player who will benefit from playing alongside such a world-class performer.

"It's been a long haul but the point I'm making about maturity is we needed a finished player," Ferguson said.

"(Paul) Scholes and (Ryan) Giggs are coming to the end and I need mature top players to replace them.

"The young ones don't have what Scholes and Giggs do at the moment and that's very important.

"We have had several players who have been that sort of catalyst, starting with (Eric) Cantona, I don't think we're short of all that, I think we were still capable of winning the title without Robin but he gives us a sort of certainty for the future.

"You always learn from great players, if you look at what Cantona did, he was a tremendous teacher for the all the young players and I think Danny will welcome that.

"He will learn he won't play every week because he will get little niggles and strains, but when he's 23 or 24 he'll be a fantastic player and will learn from the other strikers here.

"We've got a great combination of strikers now, it will be difficult for me but it's better to have another great player rather than worrying if you've got the right player."

In the eyes of one rival manager, at least, the van Persie signing makes United strong favourites for the title although Ferguson was placing little credibility in the claims of Roberto Mancini, manager of defending champions Manchester City, who said precisely that.

 

Usain Bolt declared himself "the greatest" after becoming London 2012's history man with a second double gold performance.

And British fighter Nicola Adams also entered the record books, becoming the first Olympic woman boxing champion as Team GB's golden girls delivered again.

Jamaican Bolt sprinted into history on the track as the first man to win a Games 100m and 200m sprint double at two separate Olympics. The 25-year-old, who could win yet another gold in the 100m relay, said: "I'm now a living legend, I'm also the greatest athlete to live.

"Now I am going to sit back, relax and think about what's next. But I am not ready to retire. I love this sport. The rest of the season I am just going to have fun because I did what I came here to do."

Team GB's female athletes led the way again by adding three more golds and a bronze to the medal haul. Adams's victory came along with rider Charlotte Dujardin winning her second gold medal of London 2012 in the dressage which also saw a bronze for Laura Bechtolsheimer. And in a dramatic late-night triumph, 19-year-old Jade Jones won Britain's first taekwondo gold medal. The victories take Team GB's medal haul at London 2012 to 52 - 25 gold, 13 silver and 14 bronze.

Adams, a one-time extra in soaps such as EastEnders and Coronation Street, was roared to victory by chants of "Nicola, Nicola, Nicola" from 10,000 ringside fans at London's ExCeL arena. The 29-year-old sealed her win with an Ali shuffle as she comprehensively overcame China's double world champion Ren Cancan in front of a crowd including the Duchess of Cambridge.