Appeal withdrawn

Munich: Bayern Munich withdrew their appeal of goalkeeper Oliver Kahn’s suspension for next week’s Champions League quarter-final match against AC Milan. Bayern said on Thursday it dropped its objections ahead of a UEFA hearing on Monday because the club eeded “focused preparation”. Kahn received a one-match ban for improper conduct after throwing his urine sample during a post-game doping control on March 7. — AP

Record teams in WC

ZURICH: A record 204 teams have entered the first stage of the 2010 World Cup. That includes Montenegro, likely to be voted the 208th member of FIFA at a meeting in May. FIFA said on Friday that only the Philippines, Bhutan, Brunei and Laos have no chance of participating in the 19th edition in South Africa. In 2002, a previous-record 199 teams registered for the regional qualifications, but only 193 took part.— AP

Van Persie injured

LONDON: Arsenal forward Robin

van Persie is set to miss the rest of the season due to a foot injury. Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said it was “likely” that the 23-year-old Netherlands international would not return until next season. Van Persie broke the fifth metatarsal bone in his right foot when he scored the equalizer in Arsenal’s 2-1 league win over Manchester United on January 23. Arsenal striker Thierry Henry is also out for the rest of the season with stomach and groin injuries. — AP