Russian soccer fans clashed with police and Poland supporters in separate incidents in Warsaw shortly before the two teams were to meet in an emotionally charged match at Euro 2012.
Police said 10 people were injured; seven Poles, two Russians and one German. In what appeared to be the most violent incident, Polish football hooligans were seen attacking Russians.
The two countries share a difficult history, including decades of control by Moscow over Poland during the Cold War.
A group of 400 fans from the Spanish city of Bilbao were determined to see their team playing the Europa League final but went to the wrong city. How can that happen? Well, they headed to Budapest, Hungary, instead of booking travel to the correct city — Bucharest, Romania.
According to Spanish TV channel Antena 3 the fans pushed on, but still weren’t able to get to Bucharest in time to see their team lose 3-0 to La Liga rival Atletico Madrid.
But the stadium announcer was just as flawed as his greeting to fans was, “Good evening, Budapest, and welcome to the Europa League final,” which set off a long round of boos.
Italian soccer coach Delio Rossi, who is the head coach of Italian Series A’s Fiorentina side, was fired after he punched midfielder Adem Ljajic, his own player in the face.
Rossi was unhappy with the way Ljajic reacted to the substitution during a 2-2 draw against Novara Calcio. Fiorentina’s fans reportedly cheered and shouted “You’re a gypsy!” at Ljajic during the incident.
Barcelona defender Carles Puyol defied the usual perception associated with soccer players of being soft due to all the diving and theatrical writhing around on the pitch, when he had a gash on his face stapled shut in order to stay in the game.
Santos Laguna defender Felipe Baloy is happily taking time out of his day, which obviously included purchasing a Playboy magazine, to stop for a photo op with little Tommy.
The photo has something for everyone. If you love to see celebrities taking adorable pictures with fans, covered. If you love to see adorable children take pictures, covered. And if by chance you just wanted to see the cover of the latest Playboy magazine, covered.
Annette McCullough, a 18 year old senior at Lewisville High School in Richburg, South Carolina is being charged with third-degree assault and battery for viciously attacking an opposing player after a late tackle in a soccer match. McCullough’s victim suffered only minor injuries but was taken to the doctor for tests to make sure nothing was seriously injured.
The U.S. won’t be sending a men’s soccer team to this summer’s London Olympics after an El Salvador goal during injury time salvaged a 3-3 tie in a qualifying game Monday night. The U.S. Under-23 team was down 2-1 after a defensive breakdown allowed El Salvador to score two quick back-to-back goals, in the 35th and 37th minutes.
But the U.S. rebounded as passes from Freddy Adu orchestrated a pair of goals. Terrence Boyd, who had scored just 61 seconds into the match, added a second goal on a breakaway in the 65th minute. Then Joe Corona gave the U.S. a 3-2 lead on a header from short range in the 68th minute.
The tie dropped the U.S. to 1-1-1 and third place Group A of the CONCACAF four-team round-robin. Only the top two teams, El Salvador (2-0-1) and Canada (1-0-2), go on to Friday’s semifinal round in Kansas City.
The U.S. Under-23 team had qualified for six of the last seven Olympics.
Someone out there has extremely a lot of time on their hands but we are thankful they do as they have compiled every single goal Lionel Messi has scored for FC Barcelona, which he set the all-time mark last night scoring his 234.
Number 63 against Deportivo is one the more prettier ones as Messi leads a quartet of defenders to the side, all at once, but has the presence of mind to slide a pass into the net, exactly where the goalkeeper had the least chance of getting to the ball.
So is he greater player than Pele or could Pele do what Messi is doing in today’s time?
Lionel Messi is simply the best. In Barcelona’s 5-2 victory over Granada, Messi netted a hat trick and sealed his place in Barcelona FC history. With his three goals in Tuesday’s match, Messi set the all time scoring record at Barcelona with 234 goals.
It took Messi eight seasons to pass Cesar Rodriguez, who scored 232 goals for Barca from 1939 to 1955.
Bolton midfielder Fabrice Muamba was critically ill in a hospital’s heart attack unit on Saturday night after collapsing during an FA Cup quarterfinal at Tottenham. Muamba fell face-down to the field near the midfield line without any players near him.
Medics rushed onto the field with a defibrillator and treated the 23-year-old, pumping his chest for around six minutes of treatment before he was rushed to hospital.
“Fabrice Muamba has been admitted to the heart attack center at London Chest Hospital where he is currently in a critically ill condition in intensive care,” Bolton said in a statement about three hours later. “No further information will be issued at this stage. The club has requested the media to respect his family’s privacy at this time.”
When Muamba collapsed in the 41st minute, Bolton manager Owen Coyle shouted from the sideline: “He’s just collapsed.”
Muamba was carried off on a stretcher with an oxygen mask and with his chest still being pumped as the crowd applauded. All the players also left the field before Webb abandoned the match.
Muamba was still fighting for his life in intensive care remaining in critical condition after collapsing.The 23-year-old midfielder’s heart only started beating on its own when he arrived at a London hospital medics said. There was uncertainty about the causes of the cardiac arrest for Muamba, who was described by former Birmingham manager Steve Bruce as “one of the fittest players I have managed.”
As Muamba’s teammates try to deal with the shock, their game against Aston Villa in the Premier League on Tuesday was postponed.
For all the astonishing feats in his young career, Lionel Messi had never scored five goals in a professional game. And no one had ever scored five times in a Champions League match. Well, check both of those off.
With another mesmerizing performance, Messi helped defending champion Barcelona crush Bayer Leverkusen 7-1 Wednesday night to advance to the quarterfinals with a 10-2 aggregate win.
The three-time FIFA player of the year scored in the 25th, 42nd and 49th minutes for a 3-0 lead and his 17th career hat trick for Barcelona, then added goals in the 58th and 84th minutes for the first five-goal game of his professional career.
The last time a player scored five goals in European soccer’s top club competition had been when Ajax’s Soren Lerby did it against Omonia in the old Champion Clubs’ Cup in 1979-80.
“Messi is a joke. For me the best ever,” Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney wrote on Twitter.
MLS and the USSF have partnered to create the Professional Referee Organization (PRO), which will manage the officiating program for professional soccer leagues across the U.S. and Canada. The objectives of the new organization are to improve the quality of refereeing, develop younger refs and help officials get to the level of representing the U.S. and Canada at competitive FIFA events.
Beginning this year, PRO will manage officials in MLS and MLS Reserve games, the NASL, USL Pro and the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.
Veteran English referee Peter Walton has been named general manager of PRO.
U.S. Soccer and MLS will govern and fund the organization, with support from the Canadian Soccer Association and other leagues.
“Thanks to collaborative work with U.S. Soccer and the Canadian Soccer Association, officiating in MLS made significant strides forward in the past year,” MLS Commissioner Don Garber said in a statement. “The overall level of MLS refereeing is good, and the creation of the Professional Referee Organization is the logical next stage of development. MLS and U.S. Soccer proudly welcome PRO General Manager Peter Walton, who will utilize his exceptional experience as a referee and as an administrator, along with substantial resources, to help MLS achieve its vision of setting the worldwide standard in officiating.”
“We’ve always understood that the development of referees is an important aspect to the growth of the game in the United States,” U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati said. “PRO is another step towards the improvement and professionalization of our top referees. With the additional resources and funding provided by the formation of PRO, we will continue to build upon the progress we’ve already made.”
Nike unveiled their newest national team away uniforms for the USA, France, Portugal, Netherlands, Croatia, Turkey, Korea, Australia and New Zealand. The uniforms are Nike’s most durable and environmentally friendly to date.
At least 74 people were killed and hundreds injured after soccer fans rushed the field in the seaside city of Port Said Wednesday following an upset victory by the home team over Egypt’s top club, setting off clashes and a stampede as riot police largely failed to intervene.
A bloody reminder of the deteriorating security in the Arab world’s most populous country as instability continues nearly a year after former President Hosni Mubarak was swept out of power in a popular uprising.
The melee which followed an Egyptian league match between Al-Masry and Al-Ahly, was the worst case of soccer violence in Egypt and the deadliest worldwide since 1996.
One player said it was “like a war.”
Here’s a sneak peak to soccer and global icon David Beckham’s underwear ad for television to air on Super Bowl Sunday.
Lionel Messi, three-time FIFA player of the year, is on the cover of this week’s Time, but only if you buy it in Europe, Asia or the South Pacific. The U.S. cover is actually devoted to “The Power of Shyness.”
Messi, whose FC Barcelona team played to a 2-2 tie against Real Madrid on Wednesday, was interviewed by Time’s Bobby Ghosh in Barcelona. Messi is the “shining star of my favorite team,”
Time has excerpts of the Messi interview online. Here’s a sample:
“I never thought that. I always thought I wanted to play professionally, and I always knew that to do that I’d have to make a lot of sacrifices. I made sacrifices by leaving Argentina, leaving my family to start a new life. I changed my friends, my people. Everything. But everything I did, I did for football, to achieve my dream. That’s why I didn’t go out partying, or a lot of other things.”
Funny that Messi is arguably one of the most popular and influential athletes on the planet, but is largely ignored in the U.S. except for those who embrace the beautiful game.
Hit us with your best Wayne Rooney create-a-caption.
Tim Howard became the fourth goalkeeper to score in the Premier League when the American put in a wind-blown clearance from about 100 yards during Everton’s 2-1 loss to Bolton on Wednesday night.
During a game between Ajax and AZ Alkmaar a fan ran onto the field and tried to attack Alkmaar’s goalkeeper Esteban Alvarado. However the goalkeeper attacked the fan and was given a red card for kicking the fan. Alkmaar’s team left the field in protest and the game was halted in the 36th minute. Ajax was leading 1-0.
FC Dallas, one of five MLS teams without a jersey sponsorship, is losing its stadium naming rights partner as well. Pizza Hut Park will be no more as of January 8, team officials confirmed. After that date, the 20,500-seat facility in suburban Frisco, Texas, will be known as FC Dallas Stadium until a new sponsor is secured.
“Pizza Hut, as the company has recently shown with some of its other venue agreements, has shifted its sports marketing philosophy and will no longer be our naming rights partner,” team officials said in a statement.
The only soccer-specific stadium in MLS that currently lacks a naming rights partner is Columbus Crew Stadium. Both the Crew and FC Dallas are owned by Hunt Sports Group, which was founded by the late Lamar Hunt and now run by his son, Clark.
Justin Bieber is a Chelsea fan, so while in the United Kingdom this week he took time to hang out with his favorite players Frank Lampard and Fernando Torres.
Jermaine Pennant is the latest soccer player to give his car a face-lift, a shiny chrome wrapped Aston Martin to be exact. The Stoke City star was snapped driving though town in his £130,000 Aston Martin DBS.
Playing for Peterborough United FC in the English Champions League, Congolese defender Gabriel Zakuani recently celebrated the birth of his son with a now regular celebrity tradition of stupid names. Zakuani may win with the worst yet though after saddling his kid with the first name of “Trendy.”
Zakuani said that the name refers to Trendy’s mother’s (Shanice Petrie) work in fashion, although a quick Google search reveals that Petrie doesn’t seem to have anything noteworthy. Regardless, you’ve now named a little boy “Trendy,” which is just fucking asinine and cruel.
“The official reason was [Petrie] wanted something to reflect [her work]. But it was me who came up with Trendy,” Zakuani said. “People have asked if his name is because of ‘trending topics’ on Twitter. Maybe it was in the back of my mind.”
“Everyone has been giving me banter. The gaffer Darren Ferguson wouldn’t believe me,” Zakuani said of his son’s name. “He kept asking me what it really is. But Trendy definitely suits him. I’m sure it’ll grow on everybody.”
The FIFA World Cup will have a new U.S. TV partner in 2018 and 2022, with several sources saying that Fox will pick up the English-language rights. FIFA has informed the bidders and is planning to announce the winners at some point today or early next week. The decision to award the rights to Fox is a shocking development, since incumbent ESPN was widely believed to be the front-runner to retain the World Cup rights.
ESPN in 2005 paid $100 million for an English-language package that included rights to the 2010 and 2014 World Cups. Fox picked up rights to all FIFA events from 2015-22, including the men’s World Cup in 2018 and 2022; the women’s World Cup in 2015 and 2019; and all Under-20 and Under-17 games.
It is unclear who will pick up the Spanish-language rights that both Univision and Telemundo were bidding on, with Univision the incumbent.