Puig, whose performances were one of the few positives in Barca's disappointing end to last season and who looked as if he was going to play a major role in the new season, was left in the stands for the club's traditional pre-season Joan Gamper friendly against Elche on Saturday night.
Upon receiving an update regarding ongoing discussions between WADA and the U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) at the ExCo meeting, Banka, who is also chair of the ExCo, said, "It is very important that WADA and the U.S. authorities work together to further strengthen anti-doping and again, I state my willingness to be part of constructive discussions in order to ensure collaboration between the U.S. and the global anti-doping community."
The aggregate winner will qualify for the Champions League's group stage. Enditem
Elsewhere, ninth-seeded Garbine Muguruza of Spain disposed of American Sloane Stephens 6-3, 6-3, and former French Open winner Svetlana Kuznetsova had to fight hard for a 3-6, 7-6 (3), 6-3 win over the U.S.'s Bernarda Pera. Enditem
"It's great to play and to be back with my teammates. I return with a victory and a goal, so I am happy. We are getting our feeling back, our way of playing," the 21-year-old Mbappe said after the match.
In the opening round of CONMEBOL qualifiers, Colombia host Venezuela, Uruguay are home to Chile, Bolivia visit Brazil, Paraguay welcome Peru and Ecuador travel to Argentina. Enditem
Thiago began his career at FC Barcelona, progressing through the youth system with his brother Rafinha, and said one reason he joined Liverpool was that it had a "family" feeling.
Security seems the dominant topic in Favre's mind as the 62-year-old announced he would be trying to significantly reduce the number of goals (41 in 34 games) they concede.
LANZHOU, Sept. 18 (Xinhua) -- Rhythmic music rang across the basement at the No. 2 High School of Jingyuan County in Northwest China's Gansu province. It echoed out from an aerobics training class for the students.
BEIJING, Sept. 15 (Xinhua) -- The first weekend of the 2020-21 Premier League season saw wins for Arsenal, Chelsea and defending champions Liverpool, though the title holders were made to work for their 4-3 victory over newly-promoted Leeds.
Earlier in the day, women's 200m saw Kong Lingwei win with 23.64s as top favorite Ge failed to finish the race.