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Portland Thorns fires Pierre Soubrier & Sophie Clough after results from NWSL investigation

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The Portland Thorns have fired head athletic trainer Pierre Soubrier and assistant coach Sophie Clough after results of an independent NWSL investigation proved the two violated league policies. 

The published report revealed Soubrier had given a controlled substance to players in violation of league policy, and without a doctor’s prescription. 

NWSL’s third-party investigators stated Soubrier “…administered the controlled substance to the players on multiple occasions without a prescription and physician supervision which is a violation of federal and state laws and league policy. Further, Soubrier administered the medication to one of the players without her informed consent.”

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Soubrier, who is married to Thorns midfielder Crystal Dunn, was placed on administrative leave in December. League Policy now states that Soubrier can only be eligible for future NWSL jobs only if he receives clearance from the commissioner and “…acknowledges wrongdoing and accepts personal responsibility for his conduct and demonstrates a sincere commitment to correcting his behavior.”

Dr. Breanne Brown also took part in the investigation, after self-reporting to team General Manager Karina LeBlanc that she had supplied Soubrier with the substance. She, reportedly, felt uncomfortable with the decision and told the athletic trainer to attempt to retrieve the medication before it was administered. 

The league found that Dr. Brown ‘did not violate any federal or state law or league policy’, but that the NWSL’s Chief Medical Officer will now hold her to increased oversight for three months, after which the CMO will file an assessment of Dr. Brown’s conduct with the commissioner. The league is also requiring Dr. Brown to review the American Medical Association’s Code of Ethics.

In Clough’s case, several concerns were raised surrounding incidents of bullying and inappropriate behavior. It was reported she made a player feel uncomfortable when she kissed her neck during the team’s championship celebration. 

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The investigation then found the allegations of unwanted physical contact to be true but said the bullying claims were unsubstantiated.

Clough, like Soubrier, will also be eligible to coach in the NWSL again provided she gains clearance from the commissioner, ‘demonstrates a clear commitment to correcting behavior and acknowledges wrongdoing and accepts personal responsibility for inappropriate conduct’ and completes training on discrimination, harassment, and bullying.

“Portland Thorns FC remain committed to following all NWSL policies,” the Thorns said in a statement provided to The Oregonian.

“The club reported to the league and fully cooperated with the league’s investigation into the allegations of misconduct by head athletic trainer Pierre Soubrier and assistant coach Sophie Clough. Upon receiving the NWSL’s final investigative findings, the club terminated the employment of both Soubrier and Clough. The health and safety of the players is our utmost priority.”

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Nottingham Forest announce signing of Andre Ayew

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Nottingham Forest have confirmed the signing of free agent Andre Ayew despite interest from Everton.

The forward has been heavily linked with a move to the Toffees in recent days, but Forest have swooped in to sign the Ghanian.

Speaking to the club’s official website after finalising the move, the forward said:  “It’s a great feeling to sign for Nottingham Forest.

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“I know how big the club is and I know how much the club means to the city and the fanbase. It’s always been difficult whenever I’ve played against Forest and at The City Ground and I love the stadium.

“Steve Cooper is someone who knows me very well and knows how to work with me both on and off the pitch. We have a strong relationship, he’s a special coach and a special human being and someone who I really look up to.”

“I know what I can bring to the team, I’m ready to give my all and make sure that we are able to stay in the Premier League.”



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Wolves vs Liverpool – Premier League: TV channel, team news, lineups & prediction

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Liverpool will be looking to make a statement with a Premier League trip to Wolves this weekend, having been dumped out of the FA Cup by Brighton last Sunday.

Jurgen Klopp’s side are without a league win in their last three attempts and have slipped as low as ninth in the table. Depending on what Chelsea do against Fulham on Friday night, the Reds could be 10th by the time they kick-off at Wolves.

Wolves are still yet to really find their groove under Julen Lopetegui, although at least remain out of the relegation zone on goal difference for the time being.

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Wolves vs Liverpool H2H Results (Last Five Games)

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Wolves team news

Wolves have no new injury concerns ahead of this one, with Pedro Neto, Boubacar Traore, Sasa Kalajdzic and Chiquinho all still sidelined.

Wolves predicted lineup (4-2-3-1): Sa; Semedo, Collins, Kilman, Bueno; Neves, Nunes; Traore, Sarabia, Hwang; Jimenez.

Liverpool team news

Centre-back Ibrahima Konate is the latest Liverpool player to join the injury list, ruled out until at least mid-February with a hamstring problem.

Virgil van Dijk is also still out, as are Roberto Firmino, Luis Diaz and Diogo Jota. Arthur Melo is making progress but is a couple of weeks away from resuming training.

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Liverpool predicted lineup (4-3-3): Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Matip, Gomez, Robertson; Henderson, Fabinho, Thiago; Salah, Nunez, Gakpo.

It’s certainly feasible that Wolves could continue to pile the misery on Liverpool.

The Reds had beaten Wolves in seven consecutive meetings until a recent FA Cup tie ended in 2-2 draw at Anfield. It was then only a single goal that decided the replay in the Merseysiders’ favour.

Prediction: Wolves 1-1 Liverpool

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Mason Greenwood releases statement after Greater Manchester Police drop all charges

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Mason Greenwood has released a short statement stating that he is ‘relieved’ after the Greater Manchester Police dropped all charges against the Man Utd forward.

Greenwood was charged with attempted rape, engaging in controlling and coercive behaviour and assault, allegations relating to the same woman last year and, following an investigation, GMP have confirmed that all charges have been dropped.

The GMP confirmed the news in a statement earlier on Thursday: “Given the significant media coverage of this case, it is only fair that we share the news that the 21-year-old man, who had been arrested and charged in connection with an investigation opened in January 2022, no longer faces criminal proceedings in relation to this.

“The investigation team has remained in regular contact with the legal team, providing any updates of note, and so understand the rationale for the discontinuation of proceedings at this stage, and that this decision has not been taken lightly.

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“Despite the media and public’s interest in this case, we have decided not to comment on it in any further detail.

“I would, however, like to use this opportunity to reiterate GMP’s commitment to investigating allegations of violence against women and girls and supporting those affected, regardless of their circumstances, throughout what can be a hard and upsetting time for them. An ever increasing number of officers are receiving specialist training and the force is more consistently utilising tools, available via the criminal justice system, to keep people safe and care for victims.”

Greenwood has now responded with a statement of his own, writing: “I am relieved that this matter is now over and I would like to thank my family, loved ones and friends for their support. There will be no further comment at this time.”

Manchester United are due to conducted their own internal investigation on the matter.

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