"Fairness for athletes all over the world remains my number one priority. I will never let clean athletes become hostages of political games. Under the International Standard for Code Compliance by Signatories there are many possible consequences that do not impact the athletes," he continued.
Unless they can seal the return of Javi Martinez from Bayern Munich, Athletic Club Bilbao will also rely on youngsters such as Jon Morcillo and Unai Vencedor and, like their neighbors, will also hope to challenge for Europe, along with Getafe, who missed out last season after fading in the final weeks.
Zuriko Davitashvili (R) of Georgia vies with Aleksandar Trajkovski of North Macedonia during the UEFA Nations League football match between Georgia and North Macedonia in Tbilisi, Georgia, Sept. 8, 2020. The match ended in a 1-1 draw. (Photo by Tamuna Kulumbegashvili/Xinhua)
The reigning champions visited Sweden with their captain Ronaldo back in the squad after the 35-year-old Juventus forward missed their opening Nations League match due to a toe problem three days earlier.
In addition to Hangzhou, co-host cities of Ningbo, Wenzhou, Jinhua, Shaoxing also staged water sports competitions and other Asiad-themed activities, joined by other cities in Zhejiang including Lishui and Jiaxing.
Mercedes almost immediately elected to pit Hamilton for his scheduled tyre change, but crucially failed to notice that race director Michael Masi had temporarily closed the pit entrance to allow marshals to clear the stricken Haas, earning their driver a 10-second stop-go penalty that put him out of serious contention.
Zhao Xuri (L) of Dalian FC vies with Huang Zichang of Jiangsu Suning during the 10th round match between Dalian FC and Jiangsu Suning at the postponed 2020 season Chinese Football Association Super League (CSL) Dalian Division in Dalian, northeast China's Liaoning Province, Sept. 8, 2020. (Xinhua/Pan Yulong)
It was also a disastrous race for Red Bull, with Max Verstappen retiring from the midfield with engine trouble, and Alex Albon finishing down in 15th after a scrappy performance in which he received a five-second penalty for impeding Romain Grosjean's Haas.
Team captain Sergio Ramos continues to be vital, as much for his ability to intimidate rivals as for his positional sense, and the 34-year-old is showing few signs of slowing down, while Zidane will be looking for more progress from young Brazilian wingers Vinicius Jr and Rodrygo.
The 25-year-old equalized with the last kick of the match after Rodinei Almeida brought down Elber Pimentel with a rash challenge.
Emerging stars such as Serge Gnabry, Leroy Sane, and the center backs like Niklas Suele (all Bayern) and Antonio Ruediger (Chelsea) need time to fill the gap caused by the changes.