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Makers of Criticized World Cup Ball Make Changes

Accepting widespread criticism of the Jabulani's movement at last year's World Cup, Adidas has completely redesigned the ball that will be used at the 2012 European Championship.

The swerving Jabulani angered several coaches in South Africa and was even cited as a possible cause for "inexplicable" goalkeeping mistakes in an official FIFA report.

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Euro 2012: Spain to Face Italy, Croatia, Ireland

Spain avoided its biggest challengers in the first round of the 2012 European Championship, leaving Germany and the Netherlands in the toughest group of the competition.

Spain, which beat Germany to win the Euro 2008 title and then defeated the Dutch in last year's World Cup final, was drawn Friday in Group C with Italy, Ireland and Croatia for next year's tournament in Poland and Ukraine.

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Euro 2012: Blanc Casts France as Group D Underdogs

France coach Laurent Blanc has branded England the favorites to qualify from Euro 2012 Group D, but admitted that Friday's draw in Kiev could have been much worse for his side.

Sweden and cohosts the Ukraine make up the pool, which will be contested in the Ukrainian cities of Donetsk and Kiev and will kick off with France's match against England at Donetsk's Donbass Arena on June 11.

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Euro 2012: Germany Downplays Expectations in Tough Group

Billed as the nation most capable of ending Spain's reign as European champions, Germany could have an unusually tough time just getting out of the group stage at Euro 2012.

In one of the most anticipated matchup of the tournament's first phase, Germany was handed a tantalizing duel against its fiercest and nearest rival, the Netherlands, in Friday's draw. If that wasn't a big enough challenge, next June, three-time champion Germany was also pooled with Portugal and Denmark in Group B — widely seen as by far the toughest of the tournament.

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Nadal Hands Spain Davis Cup Final Lead

Rafael Nadal brushed aside Juan Monaco 6-1, 6-1, 6-2 to give Spain the first point of the Davis Cup final against Argentina here on Friday.

David Ferrer and Juan Martin Del Potro meet later in the second singles rubber at the Estadio Olimpico, and history suggests that Argentina can ill afford to lose it -- the last team to recover from a 2-0 deficit in the final was Australia in 1939.

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Formula One: Ferrari, Red Bull Leave Team Association

Ferrari and world champions Red Bull have both decided to withdraw from the Formula One Teams Association (FOTA), the organization announced on Friday, amid a row over how to reduce costs in the sport.

The teams confirmed their intention to pull out on Friday afternoon, with Ferrari claiming "FOTA's drive has run its course".

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Arsenal's Diaby Struck by New Injury Blow

Arsenal midfielder Abou Diaby has suffered a new injury setback, with a hamstring injury ruling him out of Saturday's match with Wigan, his club confirmed on Friday.

The French international has missed almost the entire season so far after undergoing an ankle operation in the summer and his comeback was then delayed by a muscle injury suffered in training.

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Chelsea Facing Tough Test at Newcastle

A week after slowing Manchester United's title challenge, Newcastle will look to do the same to struggling Chelsea and provide further evidence of its ability to compete with the Premier League's top teams this season.

Newcastle is holding its own among exalted company at the top of the division, with a 1-1 draw at second-place United keeping the northeast side in the Champions League positions.

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Nadal to Play Monaco to Open Davis Cup Final

Argentina decided to hold back David Nalbandian, opting instead to send Juan Monaco up against Rafael Nadal in the opening singles match of the Davis Cup final.

Nadal will take on Monaco on Friday in the opening match of the best-of-five series on clay at the Olympic Stadium, with Nalbandian picked to play in Saturday's doubles.

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Liverpool Midfielder Lucas to Miss Rest of Season

Liverpool midfielder Lucas Leiva will miss the rest of the season after he damaged knee ligaments in his team's League Cup quarterfinal win over Chelsea.

The Brazil international was hurt in a seemingly innocuous challenge in Tuesday's 2-0 win.

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