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Spain to stay true to style with a draw enough for Qatar ticket******
MADRID, Nov. 13 (Xinhua) -- Spain will qualify for their 12th consecutive World Cup finals if they win or draw at home to Sweden in Seville's Estadio de la Cartuja on Sunday night.。
Spain's 1-0 win in Greece thanks to a Pablo Sarabia penalty, coupled with Sweden's shock 2-0 defeat in Georgia has turned the table in the group with Spain now holding a one-point advantage going into the last game.。
Three days ago, it looked as if Spain would have to win their final game, but now a draw will be enough to book their ticket to Qatar in November 2022.。
Coach Luis Enrique has already said his side will look to take the game to their rivals and stay true to their style of play, but the Spanish will be aware that their last two results against the Swedes are not good.。
The Swedes came back from a goal down to win 2-1 in Stockholm in September, with Alexander Isak and Viktor Claesson overturning Carlos Soler's fourth minute opener for the Spanish.。
Spain also failed to score against Sunday's rivals in a 0-0 draw in Seville in the group stage of this summer's European Championship. Although a repeat of that result would take the Spanish directly to Qatar, that would certainly cause some frayed nerves.。
Luis Enrique is likely to make several changes to his side in order to try and maintain as many fresh legs as possible on the pitch. Pau Torres will probably step into central defense for Inigo Martinez, who ended Thursday with a minor calf problem, while the experienced duo of Jordi Alba and Cesar Azpilicueta could come in as full backs.。
Dani Olmo will replace Raul de Tomas, and Sergio Busquets also looks likely to start. Solar will probably step into the side for 17-year-old Gavi, who also ended Thursday's game with slight physical problems.。
The Spanish have everything in their favor to keep up their World Cup record, with the only question marks over their game being whether they will be able to turn possession into chances, and whether the Swedes will catch them on the break. Enditem。
Interview: Serbia confident of successful Beijing Winter Olympics, says official******
BELGRADE, Nov. 13 (Xinhua) -- Due to China's experience in organizing major sports competitions and in epidemic prevention and control, the Serbian Olympic team is confident that the 2022 Winter Olympic Games in Beijing will be a complete success, Djordje Visacki, secretary general of the Olympic Committee of Serbia told Xinhua in a recent interview.。
"Having in mind all experiences that we have with China, as the organizer of great sports events, we have no doubt that these games will be organized to the highest possible level," said Visacki, a former Olympic rower, who represented Serbia in Sydney 2000 and Athens 2004 Olympic Games and won the fifth place in men's coxless pair.。
Regarding the organization of the Olympics amid the pandemic, Visacki said he is confident due to China's success in the epidemic control during this whole pandemic period.。
"Regarding the measures brought by China in order to prevent virus spreading during the Olympic Games, we fully support that, because, although the Olympic Games are very important to us, it is also important that they don't generate further virus spread. Based on the information that we have, China is doing that at a very high level," Visacki pointed out.。
Visacki highlighted the importance of the Olympics both for athletes and sports fans across the world and praised China's efforts to provide safe conditions for Winter Olympics.。
He also agreed that the Winter Olympics will be an opportunity to deepen friendship between athletes and sports officials of China and Serbia.。
"It's a fact that measures are restrictive and that in these circumstances fewer people from the other side of the sport, such as sports organizations, to meet. Surely, there will be an opportunity for this to some extent, and we and the Chinese side will make use of it, having in mind that we so far have had very good cooperation with the Chinese Olympic Committee, and the Chinese sport overall," Visacki told Xinhua.。
Noting how in recent years lots of Serbian coaches made a success by working with Chinese athletes and team, Visacki mentioned Serbian tennis coach Bogdan Obradovic, coach of women's basketball team Marina Maljkovic as well as "numerous football coaches."
"Surely, we are honored when such a great sports country sees Serbia as a partner and sees experts from Serbia as people who could help the further development of sports in China... That's a great honor, but also an opportunity to further expand this friendship".。
Asked to comment on the announcement of some people that they will boycott the Olympic Games due to their political attitudes and human rights allegations, Visacki reminded that sport should be outside politics.。
"This is truly a political topic and it should absolutely be separate from the representation of sportsmen at the Olympic Games. The public often forgets that ever since antiquity the Olympic Games were held quadrennially and that all political tensions and even wars would stop during Olympic Games."
"Our mind was set on something more valuable and higher than general life. This is something I wish for all the kids in the world to have, regardless of what is actually going on around them politically or in any other way. In that sense, sport is the purest thing we can do today.。
"There are a lot of challenges, like doping, cheating and many other negative things like any other field in life, but then the basic values of sport are well defined," he said. Enditem。
Trudeau invokes emergency powers to quell Canada protests******
A woman walks past vehicles blocking a road during a protest by truck drivers over pandemic health rules and the Trudeau government outside the parliament of Canada in Ottawa on February 14.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday invoked rarely used emergency powers to bring an end to trucker-led protests against COVID-19 health rules, after police arrested 11 people with a "cache of firearms" blocking a border crossing with the United States.
It marked only the second time in Canadian history such powers have been invoked in peacetime, and came as hundreds of big rigs still clogged the streets of the capital Ottawa, as well as two border crossings.
"The federal government has invoked the Emergencies Act to supplement provincial and territorial capacity to address the blockades and occupations," Trudeau told a news conference.
The prime minister said the military would not be deployed at this stage, but that authorities would be granted more powers to arrest protesters and seize their trucks in order to clear blockades, as well as ban funding of the protests.
"We cannot and will not allow illegal and dangerous activities to continue," Trudeau said.
"This is about keeping Canadians safe, protecting people's jobs and restoring confidence in our institutions," he added, noting that the scope of the measures would be "time-limited" and "geographically targeted," but without providing specifics.
As the threat of violence lingered, federal police said they arrested 11 protesters with rifles, handguns, body armor and ammunition at the border between Coutts, Alberta and Sweet Grass, Montana, just a day after another key US-Canada border crossing was cleared in Ontario.
"The group was said to have a willingness to use force against the police if any attempts were made to disrupt the blockade," the Royal Canadian Mounted Police said in a statement.
The protests by Canadian truckers and their supporters – opposed to mandatory coronavirus vaccines and pushing a wider anti-establishment agenda – have triggered copycat movements from France to New Zealand, with US truckers mulling similar rallies.
Under pressure to act, Trudeau on Sunday convened a special federal response group on efforts to end the occupation of Ottawa and the remaining, economically damaging, blockades of border crossings in Alberta and Manitoba.
The Emergencies Act was previously used by Trudeau's father, former Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, during the October Crisis of 1970.
It saw troops sent to Quebec to restore order after the kidnappings by militant separatists of a British trade attache and a Quebec minister, Pierre Laporte, who was found strangled to death in the trunk of a car.
Canada's so-called "Freedom Convoy" started with truckers protesting against mandatory vaccines to cross the border with the United States.
But its demands now include an end to all COVID-19 health measures and, for many of the protesters, for the toppling of Trudeau's Liberal government – only five months after he won reelection.
The truckers have found support among conservatives and vaccine mandate opponents across the globe, even as COVID-19 measures are being rolled back in many places.
In Paris on the weekend, police fired tear gas and issued hundreds of fines in an effort to break up convoys coming from across France.
The Netherlands, Switzerland and Austria have also seen copycat movements, and Belgian authorities said on Monday they had intercepted 30 vehicles as police scrambled to stop a convoy of trucks.
Canadian police over the weekend cleared a blockade on the Ambassador Bridge, which handles an estimated 25 percent of trade with the United States, and had disrupted business in the world's largest economy.
But on Monday morning in Ottawa, as a deep freeze rolled in, protesters remained defiant despite threats of jail and fines of up to C$100,000 (US$80,000).
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