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Rosberg to Pay for Hamilton Crash - Mercedes Boss

Nico Rosberg will face serious consequences, but his comments were misinterpreted and he did not deliberately crash into Lewis Hamilton in the Belgian Grand Prix, according to Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff.

Speaking after a heated meeting to review Sunday's stormy race won by Australian Daniel Ricciardo, Wolff explained that Rosberg, who was booed on the podium, had wanted to make a point by not giving way when the pair collided on lap two.

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Bayern Enjoy Winning Start to German Title Defense

Reigning German champions Bayern Munich got the new Bundesliga season off to a perfect start with a dramatic 2-1 win over VfL Wolfsburg on Friday.

Pep Guardiola’s side looked sluggish early on at the Allianz Arena but took the lead after 37 minutes when Thomas Mueller poked home from Arjen Robben’s cross.

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Van Persie Return Boosts United

Robin van Persie’s return to the Manchester United line-up gives new manager Louis van Gaal some welcome good news ahead of the Premier League match away to Sunderland on Sunday.

Van Gaal, hoping to bounce back from the 2-1 opening weekend defeat by Swansea, has been beset by injuries in midfield and Ander Herrera is the latest to be absent, with an ankle problem, alongside Michael Carrick, Marouane Fellaini and Jesse Lingard.

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Mandzukic Hands Atletico Super Cup Win over Real

Atletico Madrid gained some measure of revenge for their Champions League final defeat to Real Madrid by beating their city rivals 1-0 at the Vicente Calderon on Friday to win the Spanish Super Cup 2-1 on aggregate.

The hosts made the best possible start as Mario Mandzukic volleyed home the winner from Antoine Griezmann's pass after just 90 seconds.

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Verstappen's Age a Talking Point at Belgian GP

Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg resume their title bids at the Belgian Grand Prix this weekend, with 11 points separating the Mercedes teammates and Hamilton leading 5-4 in race wins. Among the sport's talking points is the news that Max Verstappen will become the youngest ever F1 driver when he makes his debut at the age of 17 in next year's championship. Meanwhile, drivers Alexander Rossi and Andre Lotterer are set for F1 debuts of their own in Spa, where Frenchman Romain Grosjean needs to find some form.

Here are five things to know ahead of Friday's first practice session:

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Brandao Provisionally Suspended for Headbutt

Bastia striker Brandao has been temporarily suspended by the French league after he headbutted Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Thiago Motta at the end of last weekend's match.

The French league's disciplinary committee decided on Thursday to "provisionally suspend Brandao starting from Friday, August 22" ahead of a hearing on Sept. 18.

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After Fan Protest, Fred Threatens Not to Play

Former Brazil striker Fred warned on Thursday that he and his Fluminense teammates might not play this weekend following threatening behavior by fans after the team's recent run of defeats.

A few dozen Fluminense fans shouted abuse at players, threw objects and hit out at their cars earlier Thursday as the team left a Rio de Janeiro airport where it had touched down following a 1-0 loss to Chapecoense, its third in a row.

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Goalkeeper Tim Howard Taking Break from U.S. Team

Star goalkeeper Tim Howard is taking a one-year break from the U.S. national team because of a "commitment" to his family.

The three-time World Cup veteran asked U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann to not consider him for the roster until September 2015. The 35-year-old Howard will continue to play for Everton in the English Premier League.

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Powerful Ahly among CAF Semi-Finals Hopefuls

Serial African club title winners Al-Ahly of Egypt are among six sides chasing three CAF Confederation Cup semi-finals places this weekend.

The other hopefuls include Zambians Nkana, Ivorians Sewe San Pedro, Tunisians Etoile Sahel, Congolese AC Leopards and Malians Real Bamako.

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Blanc Optimistic about Ibrahimovic Healing Quickly

French champions Paris Saint Germain's Swedish star Zlatan Ibrahimovic should be back in action soon despite tearing a side muscle, claimed their coach Laurent Blanc on Thursday.

The 32-year-old striker went off during the win over Bastia last Saturday but Blanc said that both he and Dutch international defender Gregory van der Wiel, who has a sore back, should both be back soon.

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