International Sports Briefs

Ibrahimovic banned

MADRID: Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola and Swedish striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic have received one match bans for their red cards in the 2-2 draw against Almeria at the weekend, the Spanish club said on Tuesday. The referee sent Guardiola to the stands for arguing with a linesman, while Ibrahimovic got a straight red for a foul on Almeria left-back Cisma. It means the Barcelona manager will not be able to take his place on the bench for Sunday’s important league match against Valencia and Ibrahimovic will also miss out.

Pienaar penalised

LIVERPOOL: South Africa star Steven Pienaar was banned from driving for 12 months by a British court on Tuesday after pleading guilty to a drink-driving offence. The 27-year-old, an Everton midfielder, was stopped by police in the early hours of Sunday, February 21, the day after Everton’s 3-1 win over English champions Manchester United at Goodison Park. Pienaar was also fined £1,000 for the offence and ordered to pay a further £100 fine for failing to comply with a traffic signal. He arrived at Everton on loan in 2007 and his move from Borussia Dortmund was made permanent when Everton paid £2 million for him.

Breno ruled out

NUREMBERG: Bayern Munich’s Brazilian defender Breno, currently on loan at Nuremburg, has been ruled out for the season after being on the end of a horror tackle at the weekend, the Bundesliga leaders confirmed on Tuesday. The 20-year-old limped off in the 33rd minute of Nuremburg’s 3-2 defeat of Bayer Leverkusen on Sunday after Stefan Reinartz’s wild challenge. Breno ruptured ligaments in his right knee and will travel to the United States for an operation with renowned US surgeon Dr Richard Steadman, his club Bayern Munich said.

Henry suffers injury

MADRID: France captain Thierry Henry missed training for his Spanish club Barcelona on Tuesday after feeling a pull in his left Achilles tendon, the Catalan giants said. Barcelona’s medical staff treated the 32-year-old French striker while the rest of his team-mates trained as normal. The former Arsenal man had been in line to return to Barcelona’s starting line-up against Valencia on Sunday, having just started one of the past six La Liga matches.

Gymnast suspended

MOSCOW: Rising Russian gymnastic star Kristina Goryunova will not be able to compete in the 2012 Olympics after being suspended for a year by her national federation on Wednesday for using banned medication, local media reported. Reports said that the samples taken from the 17-year-old at the national championships in November 2009, contained traces of the forbidden substance (one of furosemide analogues). Goryunova justified the results by saying she was taking a food additive.