Tim Howard's time in MLS is running out, with the former Manchester United and Everton goalkeeper confirming he will retire this year.

The Colorado Rapids goalkeeper and long-time United States national team star used social media to announce his retirement on Tuesday at the conclusion of the 2019 MLS season.

"I’m greatly looking forward to kicking off the 2019 MLS season, as it will be my LAST," Howard wrote. "There will be plenty of time for sentiment later.

"For now, I am going to enjoy every minute. And as I've always done, compete hard and help lead the Rapids with the sole purpose of winning."

Laurent Koscielny says Arsenal team-mate Hector Bellerin should try to "enjoy life" during his injury lay-off and has backed the Spaniard to return "stronger than before".

Gunners right-back Bellerin has been ruled out for the rest of the 2018-19 season after rupturing the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his left knee in a Premier League win against Chelsea on Saturday.

Bellerin was making his first start since recovering from a calf strain sustained in December, but he could now be out of action for as long as nine months.

Koscielny, though, feels his fellow Arsenal defender can use the opportunity to explore opportunities away from the pitch before making his comeback.

"Like I said to him yesterday, 'Put football on the side and enjoy a bit of your life with your family and friends'," Koscielny told Sky Sports. "He is starting a new chapter of his career.

"It will be long but he is a strong boy and I know he has the people around him to help him and be back as soon as possible and stronger than before.

"He knows all the team are here to help him because we know he will have some difficult moments during his rehab, like Rob [Holding] and Danny [Welbeck], but they know all the team are here and behind them to help them come back with us and help us to have results together."

Koscielny is no stranger to the treatment room himself, with the 33-year-old having only recently returned to action after rupturing his Achilles.

"It was very hard during some moments because I missed the World Cup," said the France defender. "But you learn a lot about life, you are more positive about football because you know it's just a small part of your life, and you have some good things off the pitch.

"I discovered a lot about life so I was surprised about that. I was very focused on my rehab so sometimes you are in a bubble and you can't see people trying to help you to be back as soon as possible.

"It's important to open your eyes because there are good things. Now I am more positive about my life and career and try to keep the negative things outside of my body.

"When you are a football player you are focused on football, media, results and you forget a lot of things around you. You can forget family and kids a bit because you are with your team-mates all the time. It's important to open your eyes and enjoy life as well as your football career.

"I enjoy my career more now than before I was injured because I learned a lot about football and life. I just want to enjoy it."

As Cardiff City and Nantes debated the terms of Emiliano Sala's transfer to the Welsh club last week, nobody could have anticipated the events that would subsequently unfold.

During negotiations between the two clubs, Nantes had reportedly been keen for Sala to feature one last time against Angers on Sunday, but it was Cardiff who eventually got their way and the Argentine's club-record £18million move was confirmed late on Saturday.

It was a story typical of the January transfer window – a buying club desperate for mid-season reinforcements but facing stubbornness from a selling club determined not to be left in the lurch by the loss of one of their key players.

Typical, that is, until a light aircraft transporting Sala to Wales from western France disappeared over the English channel late on Monday.

Guernsey Police conducted search and rescue operations for the plane throughout Tuesday without success, suspending the search overnight. It will resume at sunrise.

"We have found no signs of those on board," the police said in a statement. "If they did land on the water, the chances of survival are at this stage, unfortunately, slim."

There remains hope Sala will be found, but tributes being laid outside Cardiff City Stadium and a gathering of Nantes fans in the French city suggests supporters are fearing the worst.

Sala's professional breakthrough came during his time playing for Proyecto Crecer in his homeland – a youth academy with links to Ligue 1 side Bordeaux, who spotted his talent and brought him to Europe in 2012.

Although his time at Bordeaux demanded patience – Sala only made 11 league appearances for the club over three years – loan periods at Orleans, Niort and Caen gave him a platform to demonstrate his abilities.

Nineteen goals in 37 matches at third-tier Orleans, 18 in 37 league games with Ligue 2 outfit Niort and then five in 13 top-flight appearances with Caen – a period in which he played alongside N'Golo Kante and Thomas Lemar - convinced Nantes to take him to Stade de la Beaujoire on a five-year contract in 2015, paying a reported €1million for his services.

Sala quickly became a regular starter for Nantes and he racked up 42 league goals in three-and-a-half seasons for the club. This season, only Paris Saint-Germain's star trio of Kylian Mbappe (17), Edinson Cavani (14) and Neymar (13), along with in-demand Lille forward Nicolas Pepe (13), have outscored Sala, who netted 12 from 19 games in Ligue 1.

It is that kind of form which will have persuaded Cardiff that Sala was the man to fire them away from the relegation zone and to part with a reported £18m. On Tuesday night, however, prayers were being said that Sala would live to start his new chapter with the Premier League club.

In November last year, Cardiff earned praise for their conduct and compassion when hosting Leicester City in the Foxes' first match since the death of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha in a helicopter crash that claimed the lives of five people.

As football steels itself for the next update in football's latest aviatic incident, it is Cardiff themselves – and Nantes – who need the sport to rally around them.

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo has been fined £8,000 by the Football Association (FA) over his celebrations during Wolves' dramatic Premier League win against Leicester City.

Diogo Jota's late goal secured his hat-trick and a 4-3 victory in a thriller at Molineux on Saturday, Nuno marking the strike by celebrating with his players on the field.

The FA charged the Wolves boss with misconduct over the incident and the Portuguese accepted the standard penalty, the body confirmed on Tuesday.

As Nuno has not been given a touchline ban, he is free to lead Wolves from the dugout in their next Premier League game, at home to West Ham on January 29.

Nuno was dismissed by the match official and accepted it was the right decision to send him off after he encroached on to the turf.

"I was sent off, rightly so. You cannot go on the pitch," he told Sky Sports.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was also fined £8,000 by the FA in December after running on the pitch to celebrate a late winning goal in the Merseyside derby.

After Divock Origi profited from Jordan Pickford's error, Klopp ran on the field to hug goalkeeper Alisson, subsequently landing himself in trouble.

Bournemouth have signed Wales international centre-back Chris Mepham from Championship side Brentford for a reported £12million.

Mepham, 21, has signed a "long-term contract" with the Cherries, having developed into one of one of the most highly rated young British defenders.

After coming through Brentford's academy, Mepham made his breakthrough last season, making 21 appearances and nailing down a spot in the starting XI in the second half of the campaign.

The former Wales Under-21s captain added to that with another 22 outings this term and has impressed despite Brentford languishing in 17th in the table.

Mepham joins a strong collection of talented young players at Bournemouth, including Nathan Ake, Lewis Cook, David Brooks and Dominic Solanke, and highlighted the influence of manager Eddie Howe in his signing.

"It's taken a while to get my signature on the dotted line but it’s been worth the wait," Mepham told Bournemouth's official website.

"There's so much to like about this club, not least the manager. Eddie Howe is a fantastic manager and what he's done here is remarkable, so to be working under him every day is a really exciting prospect.

"I'm still young and have lots to learn and develop on my game, but I can't wait to get started, to meet everyone and to get out on the training pitch."

Mepham becomes Bournemouth's third signing of the month, following the reported £19m acquisition of Solanke and Nathaniel Clyne's loan arrival, both from Liverpool.

Meanwhile, Bournemouth have allowed midfielder Marc Pugh depart the club on loan for the rest of the season, joining second-tier Hull City.

Guernsey Police have suspended the search for Emiliano Sala, with the force having so far found "no signs of those on board" an aircraft on which the Cardiff City striker was travelling.

The French Civil Aviation Authority confirmed on Tuesday that the 28-year-old was on a plane that had gone missing while travelling from Nantes to Cardiff late on Monday.

Sala, who was confirmed as Cardiff's record signing on Saturday after opting to leave Ligue 1 side Nantes, is said to have been one of two people on an aircraft that disappeared while crossing the English Channel.

Search and rescue teams searched for Sala throughout Tuesday but Guernsey Police confirmed in a statement that operations would not take place through the night.

"During the course of the 15-hour search, which used multiple air and sea assets from the Channel Islands, UK and France, a number of floating objects have been seen in the water," the force's statement said. 

"We have been unable to confirm whether any of these are from the missing aircraft.

"We have found no signs of those on board. If they did land on the water, the chances of survival are at this stage, unfortunately, slim.

"Search and rescue operations have been suspended as the sun has now set. The current plan is for it to resume at sunrise tomorrow.  There will be no further updates tonight."

Fans have begun to lay tributes to Sala outside Cardiff City Stadium, while a rally will be held by Nantes supporters on Tuesday.

Nantes' Coupe de France fixture against Entente SSG, which was set to be played on Wednesday, has been postponed.

Cardiff chief executive Ken Choo also gave an update on the Sala situation to Sky News.

"He's such a great person, he was so happy to join Cardiff City, you can see from his place that he is so happy to be here and so ready to start," Choo said.

"Words cannot describe the look on his face when he met us and we walked him around the ground. He was absolutely ready to give it a go and we knew him then and we really feel sad to hear of this news because he is such a great person.

"You could see the happiness on his face when he signed for Cardiff, it was one of the best days of his life. We are very sad and we'd like to thank all the people who are supporting us today, we have received lots of messages. 

"We've had support from the Premier League executives as well but we are just waiting for information like everyone else with the authorities on whereabouts the plane is and the circumstances.

"When we get some news we will convey it from the club but we have a lot of supporters who are very concerned and we understand that, we are too.

"We are just waiting for them [the authorities] to inform us and we are trying to communicate with them as well. We're trying to reach the agent of the player, the family as well because we are very concerned. We'd like to reach out to the family because it's a tough time for them. We just want to know if he's okay and if the pilot's okay and where the plane is."

Sala's former Nantes manager Claudio Ranieri - now at Fulham - also paid tribute to the striker, lauding his character and "wishing" for good news.

"I was devastated to hear the news," the Italian said on Tuesday. "Emiliano is a wonderful character. He's a fighter.

"The world of football will be united in wishing for some positive news. I pray for Emiliano and his family."

 

Tottenham's injury woes have deepened after the club confirmed attacking midfielder Dele Alli has a hamstring injury that will rule him out until March at the earliest.

Cardiff City will continue to "pray for positive news" over missing striker Emiliano Sala.

The French Civil Aviation Authority has confirmed the 28-year-old was onboard a plane that has gone missing while travelling from Nantes to Cardiff late on Monday.

A Cardiff statement on Tuesday read: "We were very shocked upon hearing the news that the plane had gone missing. We expected Emiliano to arrive last night into Cardiff and today was due to be his first day with the team.

"Our owner, Tan Sri Vincent Tan, and chairman, Mehmet Dalman, are all very distressed about the situation.

"We made the decision first thing this morning to call off training with the thoughts of the squad, management staff and the entire Club with Emiliano and the pilot.

"All of us at Cardiff City FC would like to thank our fans, and the entire footballing family for their support at this difficult time.

"We continue to pray for positive news."

Argentine Sala, who was confirmed as Cardiff's record signing on Saturday after opting to leave Ligue 1 Nantes, is said to have been one of two people on the aircraft that disappeared while crossing the English Channel.

An immediate search and rescue operation was launched in the area but was halted in the early hours of Tuesday due to worsening weather conditions. Local and French authorities resumed their efforts at 0800 local time.

The latest update from Guernsey Police, given at 1315 local time, read: "There are currently two planes, two helicopters and a lifeboat searching for the aircraft.

"No trace has yet been found. Conditions during the search last night were challenging, with wave heights of up to two metres, with heavy rain showers and poor visibility.

"Today the sea is much calmer, and although visibility was good, it is now deteriorating.

"UK authorities have been calling airfields on the south coast to see if it landed there. So far we have no confirmation that it did.

"The search will continue throughout the afternoon, with a decision taken at sunset as to whether it will carry on overnight."

Channel Islands Air Search Chief Officer John Fitzgerald admitted, however, the longer the search goes on, the lower the chances of finding the plane and its passengers.

He told Wales Online: "We have been up since early this morning and just had a crew change at lunchtime, but there has been nothing in terms of finding casualties.

"As time goes on, the chances of finding survivors gets more and more unlikely. The water temperature is extremely cold at this time of year. The area is very tidal and moves very quickly but the search conditions are quite good as it is overcast, which helps because there is no glare off the water."

Sala's father, Horacio, told Argentine media he was "desperate", according to L'Equipe.

His mother, Mercedes, said to C5N: "The plane is [owned by] the president of the Cardiff club. We were informed the plane had disappeared and that they were looking for it. We're in touch minute by minute."

Sala joined the Bluebirds from Nantes on a three-and-a-half-year deal. He said his goodbyes to his team-mates at the Ligue 1 club on Monday.

It is reported that Nantes' Coupe de France match with Entente SSG, scheduled for Wednesday, will be postponed.

Cardiff City will continue to "pray for positive news" over missing striker Emiliano Sala.

The French Civil Aviation Authority has confirmed the 28-year-old was onboard a plane that has gone missing while travelling from Nantes to Cardiff late on Monday.

A Cardiff statement read: "We were very shocked upon hearing the news that the plane had gone missing. We expected Emiliano to arrive last night into Cardiff and today was due to be his first day with the team.

"Our owner, Tan Sri Vincent Tan, and chairman, Mehmet Dalman, are all very distressed about the situation.

"We made the decision first thing this morning to call off training with the thoughts of the squad, management staff and the entire Club with Emiliano and the pilot.

"All of us at Cardiff City FC would like to thank our fans, and the entire footballing family for their support at this difficult time.

"We continue to pray for positive news."

 

West Ham have been fined £100,000 following the chaotic scenes that marred their home fixture with Burnley in the Premier League last season.

Tempers flared at London Stadium in March as Burnley scored three second-half goals, with fans running onto the pitch and West Ham owners David Sullivan and David Gold being forced to leave the directors' box for their own safety.

One supporter memorably entered the field of play wielding a corner flag, while others became involved in confrontations with players, including captain Mark Noble.

The club has now been fined over the incidents, having initially rejected a Football Association charge.

An FA statement read: "West Ham United FC has been fined £100,000 for failing to ensure that its spectators conducted themselves in an orderly fashion and that no spectators or unauthorised persons encroached onto the pitch during the Premier League match against Burnley FC on Saturday 10 March 2018. 

"The club denied the charge, but it was subsequently found proven, and was sanctioned by an Independent Regulatory Commission hearing on Friday [18/01/2019]."

Wesley Hoedt has joined Celta Vigo from Southampton on loan for the rest of the season.

The LaLiga club have the option to sign the centre-back on a permanent deal in the post-season transfer window.

Hoedt, 24, joins Sofiane Boufal in leaving the Premier League for Balaidos this term.

"Hoedt's move will allow him to gain additional playing time between now and the end of the season, while also further helping [Ralph] Hasenhuttl to achieve his aim of trimming the first-team squad this month," Southampton said in a statement.

"The club would like to wish Wesley good luck for the rest of the season."

Hoedt joined Saints in August 2017 from AZ for a reported fee of £15million, signing a five-year deal.

The Netherlands international made 28 league appearances last season and managed 13 starts this term, but was left out of the side by new boss Hasenhuttl.

Emiliano Sala was on board a plane that has gone missing while travelling from Nantes to Cardiff, the French Civil Aviation Authority has told AFP.

Argentine Sala, who was confirmed as Cardiff City's record signing on Saturday after opting to leave Ligue 1 Nantes, is said to have been one of two people on the aircraft that disappeared on Monday while crossing the English Channel.

Cardiff chairman Mehmet Dalman was quoted as saying in a statement on Tuesday: "We are very concerned by the latest news that a light aircraft lost contact over the Channel last night.

"We are awaiting confirmation before we can say anything further. We are very concerned for the safety of Emiliano Sala."

Guernsey Coastguard received an alert at 2023 local time that a PA 46 Malibu light aircraft had lost radar contact.

An immediate search and rescue operation was launched in the area but was halted in the early hours of Tuesday due to worsening weather conditions.

Local and French authorities resumed their efforts at 0800. At 1025, Guernsey Police tweeted: "There are currently two helicopters, two planes and one lifeboat searching. Further information as it is available."

Arsenal defender Hector Bellerin will miss the rest of the season after rupturing the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his left knee against Chelsea, the club have confirmed.

The Spain right-back appeared to twist his knee before falling to the Emirates Stadium turf and departed on a stretcher after 72 minutes on Saturday.

Bellerin was making his first start since suffering a calf strain in December, and head coach Unai Emery accepted after the match things were "not positive" for his defender.

Arsenal confirmed Emery's fears on Tuesday, revealing Bellerin is expected to be out for between six and nine months and will therefore not feature again this term.

"Further to the injury sustained during our match against Chelsea on Saturday, we can confirm that Hector has ruptured the anterior cruciate ligament of his left knee," the club said in a statement on Tuesday.

"Hector will undergo surgery to repair this in the coming days. The rehabilitation process is expected to take between six to nine months and therefore rules Hector out of action for the remainder of this season.

"Everyone at the club will now be working as hard as we can to ensure Hector is back on the pitch as soon as possible next season."

Bellerin has made 19 appearances in the Premier League this season, 18 of which have come as starts.

There was a more positive update regarding Henrikh Mkhitaryan, with the Armenia international expected to resume full training this week after missing the last month with a fractured metatarsal.

Arsenal host Manchester United in the fourth round of the FA Cup on Friday.

Arsenal defender Hector Bellerin will miss the rest of the season after rupturing the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his left knee against Chelsea, the club have confirmed.

There are growing concerns that new Cardiff City signing Emiliano Sala was on board a plane that went missing over the English Channel on Monday.

Guernsey Coastguard received an alert at 2023 local time that a PA 46 Malibu light aircraft, travelling from Nantes to Cardiff, had lost radar contact.

It is feared the striker, who was confirmed as the Premier League club's record signing on Saturday, was one of two people on board.

An immediate search and rescue operation was launched in the area but was halted in the early hours of Tuesday due to worsening weather conditions. Local and French authorities resumed their efforts at 0800.

In a statement published on Facebook, Guernsey Police said: "Guernsey Coastguard received an alert at 2023 from Jersey ATC, that a light aircraft had gone off their radar approximately 15 miles north of Guernsey, initiating a major search and rescue operation involving both St Peter Port and Alderney lifeboats. Air Search 1 and 2 HM Coastguard helicopters are also involved in the search.

"The PA 46 Malibu, a single turbine engine aircraft was on route from Nantes in France, to Cardiff in Wales, with two people on board when it was lost off radar as Jersey ATC was attempting to make contact.

"A search model was created on SARIS, based on the likely ditching position, and all search and rescue assets were tasked to the area.

"The search was terminated at 0200, with all search and rescue assets being stood down, due to strengthening winds, worsening sea conditions and reducing visibility. At this time no trace of the missing aircraft had been found.

"The aircraft departed Nantes at 1915 for Cardiff. The aircraft was flying at 5000 feet. The aircraft on passing Guernsey requested descent. Jersey ATC lost contact whilst it was flying at 2300 feet.

"Air Search 1 and a French rescue helicopter based in Cherbourg, resumed the search of the area at 0800."

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