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Italy erupts as Europe’s soccer champions come home to Rome

ROME (AP) — Europe’s soccer champions returned home at dawn Monday to the ecstatic cheers of Italians who spent the better part of the night honking horns, setting off fireworks and violating all sorts of coronavirus precautions to celebrate Italy’s 3-2 win on penalties over England.

Captain Giorgio Chiellini, his fist pumping in the air, and coach Roberto Mancini hoisted the trophy high over their heads as they descended from the Alitalia charter at Rome’s Leonardo da Vinci airport. Amid cheers from . . .

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Kane carries England past Ukraine, into Euro 2020 semifinals

ROME (AP) — England is going back home — with something to play for. Harry Kane scored twice and England overwhelmed Ukraine 4-0 Saturday to reach the European Championship semifinals.

It was the only match of Euro 2020 that England had to play away from Wembley Stadium and it was the team’s most dominant performance of the tournament.

“I’ve said it all along it’s all about peaking for the right time,” Kane said. “We are on the right track.” Harry Maguire and Jordan Henderson also scored as England kept a clean sheet for the fifth straight match of . . .

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FRENCH OPEN 2021: Rafael Nadal’s magic numbers are 14 and 21

Go back, for a moment, to May 8, 2005, when Rafael Nadal was still just 18 and yet to appear in a French Open, let alone win one.

After collecting his first trophy on the red clay of Rome — which had been preceded by his first trophy on the red clay of Barcelona, which in turn had been preceded by his first trophy on the red clay of Monte Carlo — Nadal was asked that day whether he agreed with the notion that all of this success would make him a popular pick for his first trophy on the red clay of Paris soon thereafter.

In an answer brimming with a mix of humility and common sense, Nadal noted that, yes, it did seem he was deemed the . . .

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Italy’s Eurovision song winner tests negative for drugs

ROME (AP) — Eurovision Song Contest organizers said Monday that the lead singer of Italian glam rock band Maneskin tested negative for drug use, putting to an end speculation that had tarnished the band’s victory.

“We consider the matter closed,” the European Broadcasting Union, which produces the annual kitsch-filled song festival, said in a statement.

EBU said it came to the conclusion after it reviewed all the available footage of the TV broadcast Saturday night and saw . . .

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Vatican issues a street art stamp, ends up getting sued

ROME (AP) — One night in early 2019, Rome street artist Alessia Babrow glued a stylized image of Christ she had made onto a bridge near the Vatican. A year later, she was shocked to learn that the Vatican had apparently used a reproduction of her image, which featured her hallmark heart emblazoned across Christ’s chest, as its 2020 Easter postage stamp.

Babrow sued the Vatican City State’s telecommunications office in a Rome court last month, alleging it was wrongfully profiting off her creativity and was violating the original intent of her artwork. The lawsuit, which is seeking nearly 130,000 euros in damages, said the Vatican never responded officially to Babrow’s attempts to negotiate a settlement after . . .

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Eurovision: Italian lead singer to take voluntary drug test

ROME (AP) — The Italian rock band that won the Eurovision Song Contest returned home Sunday to the adulation of fans and so much speculation that the lead singer had snorted cocaine during the show that he offered to take a drug test.

Maneskin lead singer Damiano David strongly denied he had taken drugs during Saturday’s live television broadcast. But he offered to take a drug test upon his return to Rome to put the matter to rest and refute social media speculation fueled by footage of him bending over a table during the competition.

Asked at a post-victory news conference whether he’d snorted cocaine, David replied that he doesn’t use drugs and . . .

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