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Erdogan to be sworn in for third term as Turkish president



President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is set to be sworn in on Saturday as head of state after winning a historic runoff election to extend his two-decade rule for another five years as Turkey’s economic woes worsen.

The inauguration in parliament will be followed by a lavish ceremony at his palace in the capital Ankara attended by dozens of world leaders.

Turkey’s transformative but divisive leader won the May 28 runoff against a powerful opposition coalition, and despite an economic crisis and severe criticism following a devastating February earthquake that killed more than 50,000 people.

Erdogan won 52.18 percent of the vote while his secular rival Kemal Kilicdaroglu 47.82 percent, official results show.

Turkey’s longest-serving leader faces immediate and major challenges in his third term driven by a decelerating economy and foreign policy tensions with the West.

“From a geopolitical point of view, the election will reinforce Turkey’s recent pursuit of an independent foreign policy,” said Matt Gertken, chief geopolitical strategist at BCA Research.

“This policy aims to extract maximum economic and strategic benefits from eastern and autocratic states while still preventing a permanent rupture in relations with western democracies,” he said.

“Tensions with the West will likely increase again, within that framework, now that Erdogan has a new mandate

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‘We’ll have to assess him’ – Mikel Arteta gives verdict on Declan Rice injury



Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta revealed that Declan Rice’s injury needs to be “assessed” after he was substituted at half-time against Tottenham.

The England international had to be replaced by Jorginho at half-time in the north London derby where the spoils were shared between the two teams after a 2-2 draw. Rice emerged with a bandage on his left calf as he made his way onto the bench in the second half and now Arteta has confirmed that the player has indeed picked up a knock and will require further assessment.

“He had some discomfort in his back and was telling us during the first half he was uncomfortable,” Arteta told reporters after the match.

When further pressed if Rice was out for short or medium term, he said: “Hopefully not [out for long]. We have to assess him. It’s strange when a player like him asks to come off because he’s uncomfortable. Hopefully not, but let’s see.”

Rice has been an integral part of Arteta’s plans since his arrival for West Ham for a reported fee of around £105m ($137m). He had a busy 45 minutes against Tottenham as well until he had to be subbed off due to discomfort.

Rice will undergo tests in the next few days to determine the extent of the injury. The results will determine if he will be available when the Gunners travel to Brentford for an EFL Cup third-round clash on Wednesday evening

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‘Heaven-sent’ – Xavi raves about Ilkay Gundogan impressive Performance in Champions League opener



Barcelona manager Xavi hailed the impact of “heaven-sent” midfielder Ilkay Gundogan after a 5-0 win over Antwerp in the Champions League.

After the German midfielder contributed with an assist in Barcelona’s thumping 5-0 win in their Champions League group stage opener against Royal Antwerp on Tuesday, manager Xavi hailed the former Manchester City star’s efforts and termed his signing as “heaven-sent”.

Speaking to reporters after the game, Xavi said: “When Gundo has the ball, everything gets better. As simple as that. He does everything well, absolutely everything. If we play good is because of guys like him. His signing was heaven-sent, honestly. A superlative player, a total joy to watch.”

Gundogan’s performance went slightly under the radar after another sublime display from Joao Felix, who scored a brace against Antwerp to continue his red hot form since joining Barca on a deadline day on loan from Atletico Madrid. The Portuguese playmaker also provided the assist for Robert Lewandowski’s strike.

The Catalan giants will next face Celta Vigo in La Liga on Saturday

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EPL: Sensational Brighton defeat Man United 3-1 at Old Trafford



Manchester United were beaten 3-1 by Brighton at Old Trafford as the home crowd turned on manager Erik ten Hag.

Ten Hag has enjoyed the overwhelming backing of United fans since his arrival last summer and the majority have supported the Dutchman in his current dispute with winger Jadon Sancho.

But they let Ten Hag know they did not agree with his decision to replace new signing Rasmus Hojlund with Anthony Martial 19 minutes into the second period in no uncertain manner, as a cacophony of boos rang round the stadium before the Dane was applauded off.

The change didn’t make much difference for United, who were behind thanks to a first-half goal from one-time home favourite Danny Welbeck, which was followed up after the interval by efforts from Pascal Gross and substitute Joao Pedro, who were both given far too much space around the United penalty box.

Hannibal Mejbri’s first United goal gave the hosts some hope, but in a frenetic finish it was the visitors who came closest to finding the net again as Andre Onana made four excellent saves, the best of which came in injury-time to deny on-loan Barcelona man Ansu Fati a debut goal.

It was United’s first home defeat in 13 months, when Brighton again triumphed here. The Seagulls are now on a run of four successive Premier League wins over their hosts, and this victory brought more boos at the final whistle, though not on anywhere near the same scale as when Hojlund was withdrawn.

Ten Hag’s side have now conceded 10 goals in their last four games, and have also conceded more than one in four successive league matches for the first time since 1979.

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