Wednesday Kickoff: Redknapp acquitted, two Dynamo players arrested and more

Wednesday Kickoff: Redknapp acquitted, two Dynamo players arrested and more

South American Soccer

Wednesday Kickoff: Redknapp acquitted, two Dynamo players arrested and more

Redknapp (Getty Images)

Harry Redknapp is a free man.

Redknapp and Sheffield Wednesday owner Milan Mandaric were acquitted of tax evasion charges after being found not guilty of avoiding to pay taxes on payments made into an offshore account in Monaco between 2002 and 2007, when both men were at Portsmouth. 

Mandaric had made payments totalling £189,000 into Redknapp's account, and despite the prosecution's assertion that the payment's were job bonues eligible to be taxed, the jury found that the payments were not associated with Portsmouth's dealings. The investigation into this case reportedly took five years and cost £8 million.

Redknapp, currently Tottenham's manager, is also being tipped by many to take over as coach of England's national team, should Fabio Capello be axed by the FA for speaking out on John Terry's behalf after the FA stripped him of his captaincy.

Here are a few more stories to get your Wednesday going:

DYNAMO'S DERIC, CREAVALLE ARRESTED

Houston Dynamo backup goalkeeper Tyler Deric and rookie midfielder Warren Creavalle were arrested Saturday night for an incident outside a Houston bar, according to the Houston Chronicle.

Deric was arrested for allegedly assaulting an off-duty police officer, while Creavalle was arrested for allegedly interfering with another officer. Deric's attorney told the Chronicle that the altercation stemmed from some of Deric's party not being allowed in the bar. Deric and Creavalle were reportedly with teammates Alex Dixon and Will Bruin, neither of whom were taken into custody.

"This whole incident revolves around the fact that Mr. Deric was with other soccer players, some who were African-Americans," Deric's lawyer Allen Tanner said. "The club did not want them coming in. … He's not guilty of assaulting that off-duty officer."

The players were both reportedly released from custody Sunday after posting bail.

UNDERDOG CRASHES OUT OF COPA DEL REY

One of the better underdog stories across Europe came to an end Tuesday as third-tier Mirandes crashed out of the Copa del Rey semifinals, getting beaten by Athletic Bilbao, 6-2 (8-3 on aggregate).

Fernando Llorente scored twice for Bilbao, which advances to the finals for the 36th time — second most to Real Madrid (37). Bilbao will take on either Barcelona or Valencia in the final. The two meet Wednesday after playing to a 1-1 draw in last week's first leg, with Barcelona maintaining the advantage through its away goal.

Mirandes was attempting to become the first third-tier side to reach the final of the competition. As it stands, the club may still end up qualifying for a UEFA Europa League preliminary round berth, as all of the other semifinalists are already in position to seal European spots through their places in the league table.

COPA LIBERTADORES GROUP STAGE KICKS OFF

The opening three games of the Copa Libertadores group stage took place Tuesday night as clubs vying for Latin America's top prize began their quests.

Brazilian power Fluminense edged Argentina's Arsenal 1-0 despite finishing the match with nine men. Fred scored the goal for Fluminense.

Chivas de Guadalajara played Ecuador's Deportivo Quito to a 1-1 draw, with Mexican international Omar Arrelano scoring the equalizer in second-half stoppage time to salvage a point for Chivas.

Argentina's Velez Sarsfield took care of business in its opener against Uruguay's Defensor Sporting, getting goals from David Ospina, Mauro Obolo and Sebastian Dominguez in a 3-0 rout.

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What do you make of the Redknapp case? Think he should supplant Capello as England manager? What's your take on the incident in Houston? Think Valencia has a shot at Camp Nou today? Who's your favorite in this year's Copa Libertadores field?

Share your thoughts below.

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