Cassano: Italy striker Antonio Cassano, who is embroiled in a contract dispute with his club Roma, will return to the first-team squad for today's UEFA Cup match against Racing Strasbourg. Cassano has not featured for Roma since a bitter public row with the club's general manager Rosella Sensi, daughter of club owner Franco Sensi. Coach Luciano Spalletti said Cassano's attitude in training had shown he was ready to return. "He will be in the squad. He is putting the effort in and has shown the right attitude to team spirit. If he continues like this it will make things easy for us," said the Roma boss.

In Germany: The German FA (DFB) is seeking to ban for nine months a referee it accuses of colluding with convicted match official Robert Hoyzer. The DFB's control committee is seeking a suspension that would run from the end of January 2005, the DFB said. The punishment for Felix Zwayer would be more symbolic as the proposed nine-month period is now over. Zwayer was a linesman during a regional league match between Wuppertal and Werder Bremen amateurs on May 30, 2004 that Hoyzer admitted he sought to fix.

Klose: Werder Bremen striker Miroslav Klose broke a bone in his face during his side's 3-1 Champions League defeat at Barcelona on Tuesday and is likely to be sidelined for around three weeks. The German, who is top scorer in the Bundesliga with 14 goals, had to leave the field in the 56th minute after clashing with Barcelona defender Rafael Marquez.

Maniche: Unsettled Portugal midfielder Maniche wants to join Atletico Madrid in the January transfer window but is unsure his club Dynamo Moscow will allow him to make the move. "I really like the idea of coming to Atletico, but at the moment nothing has been agreed between Atletico and Dynamo," Maniche said. "I didn't arrive in Russia that long ago and it is understandable that they don't want to let me go." Maniche joined Dynamo from Porto for a Russian record of 16 million euros last May.

Ronaldinho: Barcelona forward Ronaldinho sees no reason why his side cannot continue their sparkling run of form following their performances against Real Madrid and Werder Bremen. "With the quality of players we have I think we can carry on playing like this for quite a long time," the Brazilian said. "With every game we win we are happier and more confident and our aim is to carry on like this."

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