Brad Friedel gets one-year extension, ambassador’s role, chance at Premier League history

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Brad Friedel has at least one more year of Premier League soccer left in him. Out of contract after last season with Tottenham, the former U.S. international has signed a new one-year extension with the club, giving the 43-year-old former Liverpool, Blackburn and Aston Villa goalkeeper a chance to become the older player to appear in a Premier League game.

That distinction is currently held by John Burridge, who played for Manchester City against Queens Park Rangers at 43 years and 162 days in 1995. Born on May 17, 1971, Friedel will become the oldest player in league history should he make an appearance after Oct. 26.

Though he made five appearances between the League Cup and Europa League last year, Friedel only played one game in the Premier League. On Nov. 10, in place of Hugo Lloris, Friedel made three saves on four shots against visiting Newcastle United. Unfortunately, Tim Krul in the Magpies’ goal stopped 14 shots as Newcastle took three points out of White Hart Lane.

In his non-League appearances, Friedel never game up more than two goals, keeping clean sheets in Europa League against Dinamo Tbilisi and Tromsø. His final appearance of the season came on March 20 when a 2-2 draw at Estadio da Luz in Lisbon saw Benfica send Spurs out of Europa.

Should Friedel make a league appearance around the same time in the upcoming season, he will displace Burridge in the record books, but on-field responsibilities are only one part of the goalkeeper’s extension. With “particular focus on [Tottenham’s] work in his native United States,” Friedel will serve as Club Ambassador.

From the team’s website:

Our goalkeeper’s Ambassadorial role will have a wide-ranging remit that will include greater involvement in our Global Coaching programme and engaging with our 30 Supporters Clubs from across North America as we continue to increase our global presence and bring our international fanbase closer to the Club.

The role signals a transition into a new life off the field, but for the 2013-14 season, that life will still be a step away. Friedel will get a chance to make history during the upcoming season.

CCL: Lodeiro from 45; Royer’s diving header — SEA, RBNY lead (video)

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After 45 minutes of their respective CONCACAF Champions League knockout-round quests, things are going unnervingly well for the Seattle Sounders and New York Red Bulls.

[ MORE: FC Dallas disappoint in CCL; Club America flying ]

If you’ve watched Major League Soccer teams try, try and try again — only to eventually fail in spectacular fashion — in CCL over the years, you might say things are going a little too well.

There’s still another 45 minutes to be played on Thursday — plus the return legs next week — but both the Sounders and Red Bulls hold 1-0 halftime leads, and the vitally important away goals which come with it. Nicolas Lodeiro’s 45-yard, first-time lob of the Santa Tecla (El Salvador) goalkeeper in the 15th minute has already been eternally etched into the memories of Sounders fans.

Just 15 minutes later, Daniel Royer perfectly executed the diving header and got on the end of Bradley Wright-Phillips’ curling ball into the box to Jesse Marsch’s side ahead of Honduran side CD Olimpia.

Villarreal DF Semedo charged with attempted murder

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MADRID (AP) A Spanish judge has charged Villarreal defender Ruben Semedo with attempted murder and ordered him to be temporarily detained without bail.

Court officials in Lliria say on Thursday the Portuguese player is also charged with assault, robbery, illegal detention, and illegal possession of firearms.

Semedo testified before a judge on Thursday, and left the court in handcuffs.

The 23-year-old Semedo was detained early Tuesday, accused of tying up, assaulting and threatening another man last week. Authorities say he and two other men allegedly held the victim captive while they robbed his apartment.

Semedo’s agents told Spanish media the player denies any wrongdoing.

Villarreal on Tuesday said it was investigating Semedo and would take appropriate disciplinary action.

Villarreal signed Semedo from Sporting Lisbon last summer for a reported fee of $17 million.

Wenger: Arsenal “complacent, had no ideas” in Ostersunds loss

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Perhaps Sunday’s League Cup final had already reached the forefront of their minds, but Arsene Wenger admonished his players, whom he said were “complacent, not focused” and “had no ideas” for much of Thursday’s Europa League defeat, at home, to Swedish side Ostersunds.

[ MORE: Premier League TV schedule | Man United vs. Chelsea ]

The Gunners advanced to the round of 16 on the back of their 3-0 first-leg victory last week, but Wenger was understandably displeased by the effort he saw and expressed such feelings in no uncertain terms, before quickly easing up and praising the fact they were able to pull back a goal against the current fifth-place team from Sweden — quotes from the BBC:

“We were not at the races in the first half,” said Wenger, who saw his side booed off at half-time and full-time. I think in the second half it was much better and we should have scored a few goals.

“In the first half, we were in trouble and in danger because we were complacent, not focused and were open every time we lost the ball. We had no ideas with the ball and that’s why we were in trouble.

“We responded very well because we did the job to qualify, but that’s what we have to take from the night and that’s all.”

With Arsenal now trailing fourth-place Chelsea by eight points (and seven back of fifth-place Tottenham Hotspur), winning the Europa League might just be the Gunners’ last chance at qualifying for next season’s Champions League.

Batshuayi racially abused by Atalanta fans

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Borussia Dortmund striker Michy Batshuayi says he was subject to racist chants from Atalanta fans during a Europa League game in Italy.

The Belgium international, on loan from Chelsea, tweeted:

Dortmund advanced to the round of 16 by drawing 1-1 to beat Atalanta 4-3 on aggregate on Thursday.

The game was played at Mapei Stadium in Reggio Emilia because Atalanta’s home stadium is unsuitable for UEFA games.

There have been several incidents of racism at Serie A matches this season.