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Swedish league game canceled because of match-fixing attempt

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STOCKHOLM (AP) A Swedish league soccer match between Goteborg and AIK was called off Thursday because of an apparent match-fixing attempt.

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Swedish soccer federation general secretary Hakan Sjostrand said it was “a very serious attack against Swedish football and we will never, never accept it.”

The match had been scheduled for Thursday in Goteborg.

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The federation said an AIK player was offered “a substantial amount … if he actively contributes to the club losing the evening’s planned match.” The Aftonbladet daily reported that Goteborg said its goalkeeper was approached.

Sjostrand said he was informed of the attempt late Wednesday, adding he regretted to postpone the game which he described as “one of the season’s finest moments.”

Goteborg chairman Frank Andersson said he was informed that “that one or several players had been approached and offered money to help lose the match.”

Andersson said he “fully backed the decision” to postpone the match.

“One thinks, this is not going to happen to us. Then it becomes real and one has to digest it,” Andersson said. “I don’t think one should be naive. We have worked with this for quite some time.”

Swedish police spokesman Fredrik Gardare said authorities were “taking this seriously,” but refused to give details about the investigation.

“Those who try to pressure players either with threats or bribes will have a tough time,” Gardare said.

AIK, a team based in Stockholm, is in sixth place in the league with 14 points while Goteborg is in 11th with 10 points.

AIK sporting director Bjorn Wesstrom said it had not been decided when the game would be played, adding that the players would not comment on the situation.

Associated Press writer Jan M. Olsen in Copenhagen, Denmark, contributed to this report.

Report: Man Utd fans only allocated 9,500 tickets for UEL Final

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The UEFA Europa League seemingly wants a small Manchester United presence in Solna for the tournament final against Ajax.

United will be allocated less than a one-fifth of the tickets for the 50,000-seat Friends Arena, with club officials writing supporters to tell them the allotment is between 8,000 and 9,500.

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With no public screenings planned in-and-around Stockholm, this severely limits the allure of being in Sweden without a ticket for the event.

In comparison, the BBC reports that Liverpool and Sevilla each received more than 10,000 tickets for last year’s final in Basel despite it being held at a smaller venue than Friends Arena.

The BBC writes “the only United supporters eligible to apply for a ticket will be season ticket holders who have attended every cup game this season and season ticket or executive ticket holders who have applied for a ticket for an away game in Europe at some point over the past two seasons.”

Zlatan’s agent: Star healing well, doctors amazed

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Forget Zelda, it’s starting to feel like the Legend of Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Manchester United’s striker was famously felled by ligament tears last month, costing Ibrahimovic the rest of the season and presumably much of next season.

We say presumably because Ibrahimovic’s super agent, Mino Raiola, says the Swedish forward is so strong and healing so well from surgery in Pittsburgh under Dr. Freddie H. Fu that the doctors want to study him.

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Essentially, Raiola wants us to believe that Ibrahimovic is a real life, slightly slower healing Wolverine. Here’s Raiola, translated from Espressen:

“Zlatan is so strong that the doctor wants him back after his career to research him. They work on the world’s best research institutions for the knees and ligaments. They research a lot on the subject and that is why they are better than everyone else. And doctors want Zlatan back to do research on him. So after Zlatan’s career, we will go back and open him up again to do research on his ligaments.”

Adamantium, maybe? Raiola says that the doctors were surprised at how “clean” Ibrahimovic’s knee was around the tears. Perhaps the striker, Jaromir Jagr, Jamie Moyer, and Charles Woodson need to have a sit down and pen an instructional manual on almost ageless athletics.

WATCH: USMNT vet Diskerud nets first Goteborg goal

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Mix Diskerud scored his first goal in 13 months, burying a 15-yard chance for new club Goteborg at Sirius on Sunday.

Goteborg is one of four teams with four points through two match days in Sweden’s Allsvenskan.

[ MORE: Conte thriving on pressure from Spurs ]

Diskerud arrives to the party after a break down the right-wing came with a cross to the back post, and guides his shot back through traffic and into goal.

Diskerud “needed some Zen” to deal with NYCFC situation

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Mix Diskerud’s parlance often seems summoned directly from the Beat Generation, and the USMNT midfielder visited that era again in an interview with Bob Williams.

Diskerud, 26, joined Goteborg on loan from New York City FC last week, and made his debut for the Swedish club at the weekend. The midfielder played seven minutes as a substitute in the Svenska Cupen tournament.

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We encourage you to read the whole interview, in which Diskerud admits he’s “infatuated” with the idea of playing for the USMNT again, but here are a couple choice cuts regarding his absence from the NYCFC fold (he’s open to a return) and his wild poem that foreshadowed his exit:

Q  How frustrating has it been not being able to play competitively in the past year or so?
A Took some Zen to deal with it.

Q What did your recent Instagram poem mean?
A Don’t just consider what the author thinks. Consider what you think.