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Larsson plans return to Sweden

Published: Thursday 5 January 2006, 16.11CET
News round-up: Henrik Larsson will leave FC Barcelona at the end of the season, while Maltese football has said goodbye to a respected figure.

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Published: Thursday 5 January 2006, 16.11CET

Larsson plans return to Sweden

News round-up: Henrik Larsson will leave FC Barcelona at the end of the season, while Maltese football has said goodbye to a respected figure.
Sweden striker Henrik Larsson has confirmed that he will leave FC Barcelona at the end of the season and hopes to return to play in his native country. "I took the decision in October and then spoke to the club. I was flattered they offered me another year on my contract but I couldn't accept it," Larsson said. "I have been away from Sweden for 12 years. My daughter is growing older and I want her to know the Swedish way of life."

The Confederation of African Football will decide later this month on a new date to announce the African Footballer of the Year award after postponing next Monday's scheduled ceremony in Abuja, Nigeria. CAF said its executive committee would pick a new date when they meet in Cairo on 16 January ahead of the African Cup of Nations in Egypt. FC Barcelona's Samuel Eto'o and Chelsea FC duo Didier Drogba and Michael Essien are in contention.

The Spanish Football Federation has rescheduled the Copa del Rey tie between Club Atlético de Madrid and Real Zaragoza, to 11 and 18 January. Last night's first leg was postponed due to 14 Atlético players suffering from food poisoning.

Mykhailo Fomenko has replaced Oleh Fedorchuk at the helm of Ukrainian club FC Tavriya Simferopol. The 57-year-old has previously coached the national teams of Iraq and Guinea as well as FC Dynamo Kyiv - where he won the double in 1993 - FC CSCA-Borysfen Kyiv, FC Metalist Kharkiv and FC Metalurh Zaporizhya.

Hibernian FC midfielder Guillaume Beuzelin is likely to miss the rest of the season due to a knee injury. The 25-year-old Frenchman suffered ligament damage in Monday’s 2-2 draw at Kilmarnock FC and now needs surgery. Meanwhile, Kilmarnock defender Simon Ford has signed an 18-month extension to his contract with the Rugby Park club.

Former Hungary coach Lajos Baróti's funeral will be held next Thursday in Budapest's Szent Gellért Church at 14.00CET. The former international, who led his country in four FIFA World Cup finals, died on 23 December at the age of 91.

Players and officials in Malta have said farewell to Father Anton Dalli, a man who dedicated himself to football on the island in his role as chaplain of the Maltese Football Association. Appointed in 1962, the Hibernians FC supporter remained in the role until his death at the age of 75 on New Year's Eve. "I remember Fr Dalli with the fondest of memories," Malta captain Gilbert Agius told uefa.com.

The 58-year-old Dutchman Dick de Boer has been appointed assistant coach of Zimbabwe ahead of the African Cup of Nations, which takes place between 20 January and 10 February in Egypt.

Last updated: 05/01/06 21.38CET

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