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Florence anoints Federico Bernardeschi as heir to Roberto Baggio

Football Soccer - ACF Fiorentina v PAOK Salonika - UEFA Europa League Group Stage

There has been a good deal of bellyaching about delayed flights in Italy over the past few days, after Milan’s charter for the Supercoppa in Qatar was grounded by a mechanical fault. From a competitive standpoint, their complaints are merited. They will have had one day fewer than Juventus to get over their jet lag and acclimatise to the desert heat.

Bundesliga managers on edge before winter break as Red Christmas awaits

SV Darmstadt 98 v Bayern Munich - German Bundesliga

’Tis the season to wind down, buy stuff that nobody needs nor wants, avoid mulled wine drunkards, rummage through recycled paper bags in search of the odd wormless chestnut, laze about until the sun goes down again, bake Plätzchen, watch Johannes B Kerner or Markus Lanz feign interest in a collection of Z listers, musically talented kids and sickness/catastrophe/marriage breakdown survivors and, most of all, be grateful that we Germans have been blessed with peace and freedom – the peace and freedom that comes from being left alone by football for four weeks.

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Football Soccer - ACF Fiorentina v PAOK Salonika - UEFA Europa League Group Stage

Florence anoints Federico Bernardeschi as heir to Roberto Baggio

There has been a good deal of bellyaching about delayed flights in Italy over the past few days, after Milan’s charter for the Supercoppa in Qatar was grounded by a mechanical fault. From a competitive standpoint, their complaints are merited. They will have had one day fewer than Juventus to get over their jet lag and acclimatise to the desert heat.