x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 24 January 2018

Hannover will close practice to honour Enke

Hannover players will train behind closed doors today on the first anniversary of the death of Robert Enke, their club captain and goalkeeper.

Hannover players will train behind closed doors today on the first anniversary of the death of Robert Enke, their club captain and goalkeeper, the club said.

Mirko Slomka, the Hannover coach, said it would not be right to have cameras around his players on such an emotionally charged day.

Enke committed suicide by jumping in front of an express train on November 10, 2009 after years of battling depression. He was 32.

At the time he was Germany's first-choice keeper just months before the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

"It is not fitting that we are filmed on that day," Slomka told reporters yesterday. "We will train in peace and quiet in the stadium and of course we will be thinking of Robert. That is a given."

Enke's death sparked an outpouring of grief and sympathy across the country with his wife Teresa setting up a foundation in his name and dedicated to the research and treatment of depression.

Germany's football chief, Theo Zwanziger, and Joachim Loew, the national team coach, will lay a wreath at his grave today and the club has organised several other events for fans to remember Enke.

In Italy, Antonio Cassano is poised to miss Sampdoria's game at Parma tomorrow after Riccardo Garrone, the club president, said he would wait for the outcome of an imminent arbitration hearing before deciding what to do with the rebel striker.

The Italy forward has been suspended by the club and missed three games for swearing at Garrone after refusing to attend a club dinner. He has since apologised several times and Samp fans have called for the striker to be recalled.

"The situation has not changed," Garrone told reporters as he confirmed he would wait for arbitration to decide whether his suspension of Cassano was lawful.

Spain's Cope del Rey is down to the final 32 teams and Real Madrid face a second-leg match against third-tier Murcia tonight at the Bernabeu.

It is a game which brings back memories of last season's embarrassing defeat to Alcorcon, who were also in the Segunda B division. Real were thrashed 4-0 at the tiny Madrid club's 3,000-seat Municipal de Santo Domingo and lost 4-1 on aggregate.

This time, though, they have Jose Mourinho as coach and he is unbeaten so far since arriving in the summer. Murcia held Real 0-0 in the first leg two weeks ago.

"You never know when the day of the first defeat is going to come," Mourinho said after Sunday's 2-0 derby win over Atletico Madrid. "It's got to come someday, but we're not going to gift it."

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, the former Manchester United striker is moving back to his home country to coach top-flight club Molde.

The Norwegian, 37, United's reserve team coach, will begin his job in January. United signed him from Molde in 1996.

Solskjaer, a father of three and a fan favourite at Old Trafford who scored the winner in the Champions League final victory over Bayern Munich in 1999, said family reasons were the main factor in his decision to return to Norway after 14 years at United.