Friday, July 08, 2011

Mexico Vs. Germany ( 3 - 2 ), Under-17 World Cup Semifinal

Amazing match...

UEFA Europa League: Fulham held but go through to face Crusaders in Europa League

Fulham were held to a goalless draw by the Faroe Islands part-timers NSI Runavik but still progressed to the second qualifying round of the Europa League. Martin Jol's side will face Crusaders in Belfast next Thursday after completing a 3-0 aggregate victory over the battling Faroese. Whereas most Premier League clubs have only just returned to pre-season training, Fulham were in competitive action for the second time. The 2010 Europa League runners-up qualified via the Fair Play League and still have 21 matches to negotiate if they are to reach the final again.

Brazil superstar Marta rose from humble beginnings

At first they didn’t let little Marta, 6 years old and with the hint of a shy smile, play with the boys. It wasn’t that she was too small, or because she wasn’t good enough, but for the simple fact that she was a girl. And in the impoverished town of Dois Riachos, and indeed across Brazil, soccer was not only the national game, but a game for men.

Following Fowler

Former Thailand prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra was owner of Manchester City from 2007 to 2009, the just-defeated Abhisit Vejjajiva was said to be a Newcastle supporter, while nobody is sure what club prime minister-elect Yingluck Shinawatra follows but if it is Liverpool - and it could be given the fact that she largely won the support of the red shirt movement in last week's election - then the best week of her life just got better with the news that Robbie Fowler is set to sign for champions Muang Thong United.

Essien Suffers Knee Injury - Reports

The news was first broken on Twitter by former Chelsea player Jody Morris. "Sad news about michael essien...1st day full training aswell," he tweeted. "Sorry tweeps...heard he done his knee..cruciate.."

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Friday's Rumours


Friday MLS Forecast

The Forecast urges Montréal to pick its first MLS coach with care and sorts through the weekend slate.

Craig Bellamy on leaving Manchester City for Cardiff City and his colourful life in and out of football

Last year, after a decade in the Premier League, Craig Bellamy played for Championship side Cardiff City. In an in-depth interview, the Welsh striker explains his reasons for leaving Manchester City and why he chose to go to Cardiff, as well as shedding light on all aspects of the Welshman's life in football.

The Joy of Six: Oft-Forgotten Title-Winning Managers

From Tom Watson to Dave Mackay, via Harry Potts, here's a selection who rarely get the wider recognition they deserve.

Steve Davis: Reviewing MLS at Midseason

Round 17 in Major League Soccer is under way, which means the league rounds the halfway point this weekend. That's a fine time to start tracking league awards. Clearly, lots can change between now and November, but here's how races are shaping up for now.

Manchester City strike deal to rename Eastlands

Manchester City have confirmed the City of Manchester Stadium will be renamed the Etihad Stadium after signing a 10-year deal with the airline.

FIFA Women's World Cup: Quarter-finals Preview

After two weeks, 24 matches and no little drama eight teams are left standing at the Women's World Cup. Predictions are pretty futile when it comes to knockout football, but they're fun, so here's how I think the quarter-finals may turn out:

Dominic Raynor: Off The Ball

Off The Ball never rests in its mission to scratch around the underbelly of professional football to find the most bizarre, humorous and inexplicable stories.

This week, female Sweden pin-up Josefine Oqvist swaps shirts with a lucky fan, little-known Argentine playmaker Dario Conca joins the world's highest paid players, Owen Hargreaves embraces irony with his very own fitness video and Paraguay model Larissa Riquelme vows to get naked again.

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Jonathan Wilson: Messi is an easy target for Argentina's collective failings

When the albiceleste underperform with Messi in the side, he's the one blamed. Against Colombia, they underperformed again.

Timmy Goes Camo: New Everton Keeper Kit

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Thursday's Rumours


Gary Medel gives Gio Dos Santos a bad touch

udging by this clip, Chile's Gary Medel might have had money on the U.S. in the game or maybe he was just feeling grabby, because in Mexico's 2-1 loss to Chile in their Copa America opener, Medel decided to squeeze Gio's Dos Santos as they battled for the ball.

Copa America: Lionel Messi and Argentina players booed off pitch after stalemate with Colombia

Lionel Messi and his Argentina team-mates were booed off the pitch by supporters after being held to a 0-0 draw with Colombia in the Copa America group stages on Wednesday. Although Argentina did at least manage to avoid defeat to keep alive their hopes of reaching the quarter-finals they are clearly in a hole after another terribly disjointed performance on the back of their previous draw with Bolivia.

FIFA Women's World Cup: Sweden 2 - 1 United States + QF Schedule

The warning signs had been there all along. They were evident in Cancun, Mexico, last November. They were there again in Chongqing, China, in January. They could be seen in London as recently as April. Each of those games ended in a 2-1 loss for the U.S. women's national soccer team — first to Mexico, then to Sweden, then to England. Each time the message was the same: American players, once regarded as virtually invincible, are invincible no more.

Grant Wahl: Three Thoughts

Quarterfinal Schedule (all times Eastern Daylight):

Saturday, 12:00 p.m. -- England vs. France (ESPN/
Saturday, 2:45 p.m. -- Germany vs. Japan (ESPN/
Sunday, 7:00 a.m. -- Sweden vs. Australia (ESPN/
Sunday, 11:30 a.m. -- Brazil vs. United States (ESPN/

Paolo Bandini in Italy

Despite match-fixing allegations against the club, the coach is focused on the tactics that could make Inter champions.

Inter's new coach Gian Piero Gasperini shrugs off Calciopoli scandal.

First XI: Fall From Grace

Following Argentine giants River Plate's recent relegation, First XI looks at teams that have ridden the painful rollercoaster of a fall from grace.

Dutch hurt in FC Twente stadium roof fall in Enschede

Part of a stadium roof has collapsed in the eastern Dutch city of Enschede, killing one person and injuring 13.

The collapse happened during building work at the FC Twente football stadium. The victims are thought to be construction workers.

Charlie Adam Passes Liverpool Medical

Blackpool midfielder Charlie Adam is on the verge of completing his move to Liverpool after passing a medical at the club's Melwood training complex on Thursday. The Reds agreed a transfer fee, reported to be around £7 million, with Blackpool on Wednesday and Scotland international Adam is expected to agree personal terms within the next 24 hours.

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Copa America Previews: Argentina vs. Colombia

The hosts will aim to perform well in front of their home crowd as they take on Colombia in the second round of games of Group A after earning just a point against Bolivia.

Preview I
Preview II

Jonathan Wilson: Copa America Thoughts

Argentina shows anxiety in opener, Chile impressive, more thoughts.

Georgina Turner: Selection dilemmas for Sundhage as U.S. prepares to face Sweden

Only a smattering of the most expensive seats remain unsold, which means there will be another horn-tooting queue of Volkswagens edging through Wolfsburg toward the stadium after work on Wednesday when the U.S. meets Sweden (Wednesday, 2:45 p.m. ET). The game will decide who tops Group C and in all probability (any permutation that begins "Equatorial Guinea must beat Brazil" looks doubtful) that means putting off any meeting with the Brazilians, who dazzled Wolfsburg at the weekend, until the final weekend of the tournament.

Steve Davis: U.S. program has reached a plateau

It all seemed so simple for U.S. soccer supporters in the 90s and into the next decade: the national team was marching inexorably forward. The boys in red, white and blue weren't "there" yet, but they were en route, speeding down the highway toward a bigger place in the global order.

But lately it seems more like the U.S. is sitting on the side of the road, stalled. Maybe even missing a tire, gazing backward to spot the next truck that might roll by with valuable replacement parts.

Adiós Carlos Tevez? Why no one will be crying for the Argentinian

The reaction at Manchester City to their captain's desire to leave is one of weary disdain and, in some quarters, open contempt.

Yesterday's Women's World Cup Action

Unlike the Copa America there are plenty of goals in this year's Women's World Cup. England found some form with two goals against Japan, including an exquisite opening goal, while the Germans marched ever onwards.

England 2-0 Japan
Germany beat France

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Wednesday's Rumours

EPL Round Up

Slim pickings so far today in the EPL - we already knew that Savic and Gervinho were as good as signed by Manchester City and Arsenal, respectively. Likewise, that the Cesc transfer is complicated and that Sneijder would suit Man U [which club wouldn't he suit?]. A failed Downing bid and Newcastle's spending is scraping the barrel, but the day is young, so there's plenty of time for photos to surface of Fergie in bondage gear giving Gary Neville a deserved whipping.

Man City sign Savic on four-year deal
Good news at last for Arsenal after Gervinho deal
Fábregas frustrated over fee haggling
Liverpool fail in Downing bid
Sneijder would be 'perfect' for United
Newcastle defend use of £35m Carroll fee

Von Tranmere Nach Munchen

The transfer of the 18-year-old from Tranmere to Bayern Munich invites the question, how the hell did that happen?

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Video Star Hargreaves Out To Prove Fitness

The Daily Mail front sport page describes Owen Hargreaves' You Tube videos showing his fitness as 'bizarre'. I don't really know why. Okay, they aren't the norm for a player of his standing, but neither is his situation. Some years back Hargreaves could claim to be England's best player [being brought up in Canada and Germany might help explain that]. He also stood out as probably the only England player able to string a coherent sentence together, who had interests beyond Playstation and bar fights and whose girlfriend didn't start the day bathing in mascara [his upbringing might again might play a role here]. Okay, he was also a touch boring [did I mention Canada and Germany?]. Unfortunately recent seasons have been destroyed by injuries to his knees, meaning he was released by ManU. Video proof of his fitness, though a touch left field, can hardly hinder his case. I'd have thought he'd be a good pick up on a pay-per-game deal for many clubs.

The Mill ++

Tuesday's Rumours

Yesterday's Copa Action

Winning the Gold Cup didn't help Mexico much as they lost 2-1 against Chile, who are now only the second team to have won a game in this year's Copa America. The draws continued though, as Luis Suarez won his team a point against Peru. Sam Kelly looks at the success the smaller nations have enjoyed so far in the competition.

Minnows impress at the start of the Copa
Chile 2 Mexico 0
Uruguay rescue point against Peru

Every picture tells a story...

EPL Round Up

It seems to be all about talking today in the EPL. Carlos Tevez is talking to the press about leaving Man City. Haven't we heard that before? Modric is talking to Spurs' chairman Daniel Levy, Fabregas to manager Wenger [which says a bit about who holds the power at each club], both about how best to find the exit door. Likewise, Asamoah Gyan wants a natter with Brucie at Sunderland, while Palmero tell Chelsea to bid for Pastore. The most surprising chatterbox of the day is Paul Scholes. The redhead who normally wouldn't say boo to a goose, has decided to further endear himself to Man U fans by breaking his code of silence in order to put the boot into Arsenal.

Tévez stance revives City's Aguero interest
Scholes labels Arsenal 'pointless'
Modric heads for crunch talks with Spurs
Fábregas to meet Wenger as Arsenal exit draws closer
Palermo urge Chelsea to bid for Pastore
Gyan to hold Bruce talks

Monday, July 04, 2011

Samuel on the Gunners

There's perhaps been a surfeit of Arsenal articles on the blog recently, but when the top journo writes a piece on Gunners' present situation, I thought I'd squeeze in another one...

Face it, Arsenal can no longer attract a genuine superstar

New Rules Start to Bite

If proof were needed that Eufa's financial Fair Play regulations really are being taken seriously by England's leading clubs, the logjam of cast-offs, misfits and outcasts preparing to return to pre-season training this week says everything about the new reality dawning over the Premier League.

Fair Play leave clubs with unwanted players in a dormant market.
Fair-play rules mean we can't break the bank, admits Mancini

Dog of a Day at Copa

The most interesting thing that seems to have happened at the Copa America so far is a dog running on to the pitch during the Brazil game. Perhaps he could teach the players to avoid the post. The Guardian looks at why the two big teams have disappointed home supporters and bored the socks of everyone else.

Argentina and Brazil stutter out of the blocks
Paraguay delighted with Copa America draw
Brazil 0 Venezuela o
Colombia 1 Costa-Rica o

The Mill ++

Independence Day Rumours

EPL Round Up

Slow news day today in the EPL, but with managers returning for pre-season training perhaps they'll realise the crap they've got to work with and head for the transfer market.

'No excuses' for Chelsea insists Di Matteo
City close in on Clichy
Arsenal expect Fábregas and Nasri back – but not for long
Wigan agree Al Habsi fee
West Ham vow action over stadium