Vieri to undergo surgery

MONACO: Italy and Monaco striker Christian Vieri is to undergo surgery on his left knee following an injury. Vieri will probably miss the World Cup finals because of the injury he suffered during a game on March 28. “Given the evolution of the injury, Vieri will undergo surgery in the coming days,” Monaco said. A source close to the club said that the former Juventus and Inter Milan striker was to leave at the end of the season.

Two referees dropped

ZURICH: Greek referee Kyros Vassaras and Spain’s Manuel Mejuto Gonzalez have been ruled out of the World Cup because their linesmen failed fitness tests. FIFA has decided to have referees and linesmen to work as teams of three. Rather than break them up if one of them gets injured, they are replaced by a new set. As their linesmen failed to reach the required standards at a training session in Neu-Isenburg, they were removed from the list.

Dutch FA’s denial

AMSTERDAM: Tottenham midfielder Edgar Davids may still be in the Netherlands’ World Cup squad. The country’s soccer federation denied reports that Davids had been axed, with spokeswoman Anja van Ginhoven saying Davids “could still make it.” Coach Marco Van Basten said on Sunday that Davids and five others had only a slim chance of going to Germany, prompting local media to write off his chances.

Iran reverses decision

TEHRAN: Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad reversed his decision to allow women to attend soccer matches. In April, Ahmadinejad said he would let women attend soccer matches in a separate section of the stands to “improve soccer-watching manners” But Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei opposed the move and Ahmadinejad revised his decision.