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Lucas Podolski, Germany’s secret weapon

Can Lucas Podolski secure his chance?

There were some serious doubts over the German winger Lucas Podoloski after Euro 2012. Although the German scored just twice for Germany in last 18 months, his over all potential for German national team is totally undoubted.

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Lucas Podolski, Germany’s secret weapon—-image via: commons.wikimedia.org

Germany may have an abundance of world class attacking options, many of whom will be ahead of Lucas Podolski. Marco Reus is certainly not a secret anymore after his heroic performance against Real Madrid and he is in great form over few months. Another Mesut Ozil is a kind of player who needs no introduction at all. Ozil has been a cornerstone for German national team since 2009. It was Thomas Muller being the youngest player to score five goals in 2010 world cup since the legend Pele. As a favorite of Low’s opponents can more or less expect Mario Gotze as a threat.

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Podolski can be Germany’s cornerstone—-image via: hu.wikipedia.org

Lucas in Low’s eye:

It is unlikely that Lucas podolski to start, while so many other international superstars are available to Joachim Low. But Low is looking increasingly to be an impact substitute like a surprise package just like Lucas Podolski can be.
Low has been loyal historically to certain long standing players, from Klose to Per Mertesacker to podolski. The issue was never their current form in the club. With Low mentioning him as ‘ indispensable’ , podolski has continued to make appearances for his country, despite his recent drought of goals.
After managing 112 caps for Germany , Podolski will be Low’s first choice of attack. Julian Draxler’s stagnation at Schalke and Andre Schurrle’s inability to make much impression in Chelsea will make Podolski’s path smooth.
Although in recent years, he has often lacked confidence and precision and it has become increasingly easy to forget the impact that Podolski can have. But he has the potential to offer some unique qualities of attack and that may be very useful in the upcoming world cup tournament. He may prove very useful to the German team. His shooting power is definitely unmatched to any current German international except Reus, a better finisher with stronger leg.

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Podolski, will he make the blow?—–image via: commons.wikimedia.org

 

Will it be his last World Cup?

Lucas Podolski has had the chance to work on his partnership with his Arsenal teammate Mesut Ozil and they certainly now have a chemistry unlike any other pairing in Low’s team. Ozil was quite a helping hand for podolski in Arsenal as he’s been a menace to opposing defenses, latching onto through passes from the playmaker on the left wing.
Podolski has been to the world cup twice and he perfectly understands the magnitude. It can be his last World cup, as his 29th birthday is knocking. After joining Arsenal, the 2014 FIFA World cup Brazil will be his first international match. He may not be a good starter, but he will be the Germany’s secret weapon off bench in Brazil 2014 FIFA World Cup.

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Lionel Messi, is this time for Argentina?

The world cup count down has begun with digital clocks around all over Brazil marking the seconds remaining before kick-off of the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Argentine manager Alejandro Sabella is expected to reveal his final squad within next few days. This agenda is dominating by a press fracas over the ‘people player’ Carlos Tevez and a worry due to Gonzalo Higuain’s recent injury.

Carlos Tevez or Lionel Messi?

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Lionel Messi in action—image via: en.wikipedia.org

Although ,Tevez has enjoyed a superlative season with Juventus, he has never been part of Sabella’s national project. It is indeed a fact that has become a bone of contention generating minor demonstrations and widespread emotional outburst in some circle.

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Carlos Tevez, in a mood of despire—-image via: www.flickr.com

The possible clash with Lionel Messi, if not personally in terms of position they occupy on the pitch, may be among the reasons why it is unlikely he will be included now. Messi is being hailed as the axis around which the squad must turn without having expressed himself at all on this subject. Whatever works for Messi is what works for Argentina.

Messi is the hope:

 The four times Ballon D’or winner, Lionel Messi, 26 is still a bit of an unknown quatity for his country. He may not be a natural leader, but his boy-next door demeanour and by now renowned economy of words hide the power behind his name. The fact is Lionel Messi has become the centre of expectation, whether he overtly executes his influence or simply by osmosis makes whoever happens to be the manager try out the system in which he appears more comfortable.

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Lionel Messi , the Hope—-image via: pt.wikipedia.org

For years the Argentine outcry was why Lionel Messi deliver with the nation as he did with Barcelona. Now even Barcelona is no longer deemed an adequate model to aspire to.

The history:

In 2002, under the leadership of Marcelo Bielsa, Arentina saw one of the quickest exits in memory with them failing to get past the group stage, the smoothest ride to World cup finals the country has ever known.

Since the last world cup victory in 1986, the quest for the right formula has evaded many managers. In 1978, Argentina’s first world cup victory was under the managerial nous of Cesar Luis Menotti. Menotti defended the beauty of an attacking game above everything. He dared leave the 17- year old Maradona out of the squad completely, feeling a solid team could work just as well with out a single genius.

Failing of the Greats:

The footballing discourse has not changed for long time since. The bi-valued approach is ever present, not just in terms of style but also in the culture. Pro-government and anti-government, Boca or River, touchy passes vs dirty antics,

 All approaches tried since, have failed to win the world cup. Jose Pekerman, Alfio Basile, Sergio Batista, Daniel Passarella and of course the God of Football himself, Maradona all failed to lighten the nation.

No more dispute please!

Perhaps it is time to stop focusing on indiviguals, whether Tevez and Messi can co exist in no 10s is less serious than whether a country so geared to rising little boys for international sale can start to produce some defenders as well as some attacking mid-fielders in the long run.

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Argentina football team in the last World Cup—-Image via: en.wikipedia.org

There will be a profound structural changes within the establishment which has remained in power for over three decades could well be afoot if Lionel Messi fails to deliver the actual world cup back to the Football Association.

Lets see what Lionel Messi brings for his supporters in this world cup.

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Can Cristiano Ronaldo power Portugal to World Cup glory?

On Wednesday Cristiano Ronaldo broke another world record and became his country’s all-time top international goalscorer with 49 goals in 110 appearances. In Portugal’s 5-1 friendly win over Cameroon Ronaldo scored twice and he played down the significance of his latest achievement saying,

” I do not look to beat records. This happens naturally, with a lot of effort, dedication, with the excellent national team we have, a good coach. I knew that sooner or later it was going to happen.”

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Cristiano Ronaldo goal celebration —-image via: www.beinsports.tv

In spite of his modesty in this occasion, there is surely one achievement he could not possibly play down were he to claim it. He would become one of the indisputable all-time greats in football if Ronaldo could lead Portugal to World Cup glory in Brazil 2014 FIFA World Cup.

Ronaldo does not need a World Cup win to be considered great, claimed by Jose Mourinho. He may be saying the truth but it does not mean that Ronaldo, the 29 year old cannot be a World Cup winner.

Received wisdom suggests that in terms of quality Portugal are on a similar level to England and are thus it is highly unlikely for them to win the world Cup. However, anything is possible with a player of Real Madrid star’s quality. Cristiano Ronaldo has proved that several times. He is the type of player who can beat teams on his own, as he displayed in last November when his stunning hat-trick sent Portugal to the World Cup at the expense of Sweden.

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Cristiano ronaldo in action against Cameroon—-image via: www.goal.com

In addition, his displays in EURO 2012 were equally impressive as Portugal reached the semi-finals only to be edged out on penalties by eventual champions and 2010 FIFA World Cup winners, Spain. The group stage of that game Portugal defeated the Netherlands, the beaten finalist of 2010 FIFA World Cup with Ronaldo’s stunning class. And Ronaldo is more furious and strong and skilful than he was in 2012. He is currently holding the FIFA Ballon D’or. In this season of La liga he scored 23 goals in 22 matches and 11 goals in six champions’ league appearances.

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cristiano ronaldo after breaking the record—-image via: www.indiatimes.com

The reason Portugal are rare seen as legitimate contenders for the World Cup are because of the rest of the squad. But having some qualities in the squad it needs a little help for Ronaldo to reach his full potential. Players like Raul Meireles, Edinho and Fabio Coentrao, fellow goalscorers offered him a good support in the game against Cameroon. Monaco’s Joao Moutinho was a great help two years ago in Poland and Ukraine and if he finds that kind of forms once again Portugal could go far. But being the key player of Portugal, everyone will be looking for something special from Cristiano Ronaldo in every game they play in Brazil this World Cup. The history could be made if Ronaldo can see Portugal deep into the tournament.

Although there is certainly some huge pressure on Cristiano Ronaldo, if anyone could power an unfancied side to World Cup glory in this summer, it would be certainly him.

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Brazil fired by anti-World Cup protests: Rio and Sao Paulo are burning

With the FIFA World Cup coming in less than a month, the Brazilian government has sent in the tanks to restore order amid anti-world cup protests against the hosting cost of this international football competition. The riot police have fired tear gas to disperse thousands of protesters in Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo who marched against that demand. Some protesters hurled stones while others burned tyres and blocked roads.

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The protests across Brazil—image via: usa.chinadaily.com.cn

The cause of their anger was that billions of dollars are being spent on next month’s FIFA World Cup, rather than social projects and housing. Including Brasilia, the anti-world cup protests also took place in other cities in Brazil. Among others, teachers and civil servants also join in the protest across Brazil.

In Rio, hundreds of people were marching in rush-hour traffic on a main thoroughfare. The Rio riots drew the attention of the world as Rio de Janeiro will be hosting the final match of the FIFA World Cup 13 July.

Another city, Sao Paulo, hosting the inauguration match against Brazil and Croatia, was affected when the protesters cut off access to the Avenida Paulista.

 The federal troops arrived in the World Cup host city of Recife on Thursday, as the state police are on strike demanding better pay in that city.

Protests are more frequent:

The number of people protesting on the street was much lower than during similar anti-world cup protests last year. Although some of the activists promised that the demonstration would get bigger and more frequent as the World Cup gets closure. More than a million people took to the street last June over poor public services, corruption and the vast cost of World Cup hosting.

sao paulo demonstrations
Brazil on fire—image via: www.bbc.co.uk

According to BBC the Brazil government is looking closure to the protests as it indicates a security challenge for them. In addition the with the World Cup and the Presidential election coming in the same year, many groups are spotted to put pressure on the current government.

‘No panic, just protest’

The head of the Homeless workers movement Guilherme Boulos said,

“Our goal is symbolic. We don’t want to destroy or damage the stadium.”

On the other hand the Government was trying to downplay the scale of Thursday’s protest, arguing it was not linked with the upcoming World Cup at all. On behalf of the government, Brazilian Sports Minister Aldo Rebelo said ,

” I’ve seen nothing that is related to the (World) Cup”.

He was assuring that there’s no reason to panic in receiving three million Brazilian tourists and 600,000 foreign visitors for the World Cup tournaments.

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The peaceful protest—image via: abduzeedo.com

The anti-world cup protests were planned along with a range of strikes, including the one by the police force in the north-eastern state of Pernambuco. On the third day of strike the army was deployed to provide additional support after some robberies and looting.

The local media reported that total 234 people were arrested in the last 24 hour.

The Brazilian leaders had believed that the World Cup and then 2016 Olympics in Rio would put a spotlight on the country. They show the advances over the past decade in improving its economy and pulling tens of millions out of poverty cycle.

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Dengue fever concerns for World Cup in Brazil

Dengue, a threat in brazil world cup football 2014:

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Dengue prevalence throughout the world, some areas of Brazil in red zone—–image via: en.wikipedia.org

The new research suggests there are some concerns about the FIFA World Cup, taking place in Brazil later this summer, could result in serious outbreaks of dengue fever. A study carried out by international scientists has revealed the cases of dengue outbreaks could be set to soar over the summer, as approximately 1 million football fans will be travelling across Brazil between 12 cities from 12 June to 30 July.

The research of Dengue fever:

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Aedes mosquito, carrier of dengue—-image via: commons.wikimedia.org

From the explanation of Dr. Rachel Lowe, the lead researcher from the Catalan Institute of climate sciences in Barcelona, there are the possibility of a large dengue fever outbreaks during the World cup in Brazil. She also suggested that the outbreaks is capable of infecting visitors and spreading dengue back to their country of origin. Although it depends on a combination of many factors, including large numbers of mosquitoes, a susceptible population and high rate of mosquito-human contact, the concerned authority should treat it as a threat.

Areas affected by Dengue in Brazil:

Three certain areas of Brazil may be most affected while the football fans visiting there for watching the matches. These three locations are Natal, Fortaleza and Recife. If England wins its group, they will play in Recife on 29th June.

Dengue and Brazil:

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Tourists in Brazil should be conscious —-image via: www.flickr.com

However, warnings of dengue have been issued to 553 areas throughout Brazil, after analyzing the data relating to rain fall, average temperature, altitude and density of population recorded between 1981 and 2013.

Since 2000, dengue fever is a prevalent problem in Brazil, with more cases –around 7 million in total-in this country than anywhere else in the world.

Dengue is a viral infection and it is carried by Aedes mosquitoes. Dengue fever can quickly develop into a serious life threatening condition named ‘Dengue Haemorrhagic fever’. No preventive vaccines or other treatments are available currently to fight the disease.

The preventive measures of Dengue:

The researchers have urged the tourists to use mosquito repellent take advantage of air-conditioning systems and consider using screens to shield themselves from aedes mosquitoes.

As these warnings have come before the tournament begins, local Brazilian authorities have taken the chance to prepare enough preventive measures.

It is being advised that if anyone does return home ill following the world cup, they must seek immediate treatment from a doctor as soon as possible to prevent the disease from spreading further.

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FIFA World Cup 2014: Bastian Schweinsteiger in Injuries, Worry German Squad

German midfield general Bastian Schweinsteiger left Bayern’s final Bundesliga match of the season with a knee injury. The injury gave the German fans another anxiety ahead of the FIFA World Cup 2014.

The need of Schweinsteiger:

German’s are desperate in need of Schweinsteiger to be fit in their campaign for world cup. It has been a season of many absences for the German and none is giving a guarantee that he will be fit to start the Brazil campaign.

bastian schweinsteiger, schweinsteiger
bastian schweinsteiger, the integral part of German team—-image via; www.zimbio.com

Schweinsteiger, the 29-year-old will celebrate a decade in the German Squad just before their opening Group G game against Portugal on June 16 having won his 101st cap in the 1-0 win over Chile in last March.

A defensive midfield shoo-in for country as well as club, Schweinsteiger’s presence for Bayern Munich this season has been restricted by a trio of injuries.

Injury became part of his life:

In the preseason period back to back ankle surgeries hampered him badly. Then in January he suffered an inflamed knee ligament at a training camp in Qatar.

Bastian Schweinsteiger returned with a vengeance on his full 90 minutes appearance in mid-March when he curled home a free-kick for the winner as Bayer Leverkusen lost 2-1 in Munich.

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Schweinsteiger in injury—-image via: www.4-4-2europe.com

While playing against Arsenal at home, he scored in 1-1 draw as Bayern reached the Champions League Quarter-finals 3-1 on aggregate, then netted in their 2-0 league win at Mainz.

Bastian Schweinsteiger gained valuable match fitness in 2014 as he played only 16 of Bayern Munich’s first 27 league matches. In the Champions League semifinals Bayern Munich was defeated by Real Madrid. The match put a great deal of psychological blow and the knock to the knee last weekend didn’t help.

German coach Joachim Loew said,

“with his class and experience, he has a big influence on our game.”

By measuring his value he added,

“When he is able to play 90 minutes, with his confidence on the ball and tactical awareness, Other players respond when they see Bastian is playing well.”

He is the part of German Strategy:

Schweinsteiger claimed his 7th German league title when Bayern Munich finally confirmed Bundesliga champions with a record seven games to spare.

Bayern Munich captain Philipp Lahm switched from right-back to accompany him in the defensive midfield and Joachim Loew could repeat the action in Brazil too.

Loew lacks defensive mid-field options to partner Schweinsteiger with Real Madrid’s Sami Khedira struggling with a knee injury.

bastian schweinsteiger, bayern munich
Schweinsteiger—–image via: hiilkubad.com

The options like Borussia Dortmund’s Ilkay Gundogan has not played since August with a back injury while Dortmund’s Sven Bender is out with a pelvis injury. They all face a race against time to be fit for Brazil.

Bayern Munich’s Toni Kross has proved himself a better option as he has had a stellar season in the attacking midfield role for the European Champions and he may be dropped back into the number six position or Philipp Lahm could be moved across from right back.

No replacement for Schweinsteiger:

When Germany finished third at the 2006 World Cup on home soil, Schweinsteiger played a key role for the team. At Euro 2004, Schweinsteiger at the age of 19, had his debut.

He was awarded man-of-the –match with two long range strikes in the 3-1 play-off win against Portugal and he nearly finished with a hat-trick.

Just before the last World Cup when Michael Ballack was injured, Schweinsteiger filled his midfield role and when fit, he is Loew’s first choice in midfield.

In claiming a fourth World Cup title in Brazil, he will be the heart of Germany’s bid.

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Radwanska’s shock exit in Roland Garros, Paris

Croatia’s Ajla Tomljanovic made history in the French Open by knocking out the third seed Agnieszka Radwanska 6-4, 6-4 in the third round. This defeat meant that the French Open’s all top seeds had been ousted inside six days, with top seed Serena William losing in the second round and second seed Li Na departing in the first round.

Agnieszka Radwanska, french open
Agnieszka Radwanska—–image via: www.veooz.com

Improving from world ranking 495 to 78, she makes herself the biggest ranking improvement by any player in the top 100.

This year, she lost in the third round at the Australian Open but more recently failed to qualify for the draw at Madrid and Rome in the buildup to Roland Garros.

On the other hand, it was the first time for Radwanska as she had failed to make it past the third round at a grand slam since the Frence open 2012. Last year at Wimbledon, she ended up as semi-finalist, quarter-finalist at Australian Open and French Opens and at the US open she made the fourth round.

This year French Open has become remarkable being the first Grand Slam in the open era where the top three players all failed to make the last 16. In this French Open, fourth seed Romanian Simona Halep is the top seeded player left in the draw, having reached the third round on Thursday.

Russian Maria Sharapova, the seventh seed dodged the debris to inflict a 6-0, 6-0 thrashing on hapless Argentine Paula Ormechea. Sharapova won 54 points to 17 for her opponent with the South American taking just three points in the second set.

In men’s side second seed Novak Djokovic made his fourth round with a tough 6-3,6-2,6-7,6-4 win over Croatia’s Marin Cilic. The 2012 runner-up, Djokovic next faces either French Jo-Wilfried Tsonga or Poland’s Jerzy Janowicz for a place in the quarter-finals.

Novak Djokovic, french open
Novak Djokovic—-image via: ibnlive.in.com

Roger Federer, the 2009 champion and the fourth seeded player defeated Russia’s Dmitry Tursunov with a 7-5, 6-7, 6-2, 6-4 win and reached the last 16.

Roger Federer will face Ernests Gulbis of Latvia for a place in the quarterfinals.

Federer will play Latvia’s Ernests Gulbis for a place in the quarterfinals.

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Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti refused further interest for Luis Suarez

Real Madrid manager, Madrid coach, Carlo Ancelotti
Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti ; image credit commons.wikimedia.org

Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti has refused to be drawn on the club’s reported interest for Luis Suarez. He has recently confirmed that the rising star Alvaro Morata is set to leave the European champions.

Madrid rejected the offer from Arsenal to take academy product Morata on loan last January. Ancelotti has explained that the striker is keen to find another club in pursuit of first team football as he had an excellent league start last season.

“The player has decided to leave in search of more minutes and the club has agreed it”

Carlo Ancelotti said at the presentation of his new website.

Italian champions Juventus and Bundesliga side Wolfsburg are believed to be chasing for Morata. Hopefully Real Madrid must be looking for a buy-back clause in any potential deal with them.

Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti confirmed that he would be searching for a young striker like Morata. But he is not anymore interested about the great star of BPL (Luis Suarez).

“Suarez is a fantastic player but it would be a lack of respect to talk about signings at this stage”

Said Carlo Ancelotti.

He believes that it would be good for him to play having those opportunities, especially if he gets the chance. Anyway he gave away few hints about Madrid’s interest in Liverpool striker Suarez.</

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Switzerland vs France: Didier Deschamps shaping the France World Cup Team

Switzerland vs France: Didier Deschamps shaping the France World Cup Team, France vitory, qualifying 2nd round,world cup 2014
Benzema’s another attack ; image credit o.canada.com/Elsa

Former French teammate Eric Cantona once described him as the water carrier. After lifting the trophy at the 1998 FIFA World Cup, Didier Deschamps is now coaching his country at this summer’s Brazil World Cup.

The 45-year old has always been Solid and reliable for the Les Blues’. He has been the most trusted players and one of the most important members of those two tournament-winning sides for France. Now, he has been charged with the task of restoring France to greatness. For the last eleven years he has been coaching at club level.

The French have been anything but unspectacular in South America so far. On their last match against Switzerland, they got the unbelievable 5-2 victory. The Friday match is a clear is a clear indication that Deschamps is finally starting to stamp his mark on this french youngsters.

 The team is going to be modeled in their coach’s own image. Also the benefits are starting to become apparent for them.

Switzerland vs France: As it happened

After the 2-0 defeat in Ukraine in the first leg of their World Cup qualifying, it appeared as if the challenge of coaching his country was becoming too much for the former captain. But certainly he has responded well to adversity.

Didier Deschamps has changed his team in terms of both personnel and formation. He tried to find out the boys he could trust better. That’s the way like a 103 times capped former player.

He has already been awarded for his bold decisions. The 3-0 win at Stade de France secured France’s berth in Brazil.

On the Friday match, France tried routing Switzerland 5-2, at the Arena Fonte Nova in Salvador.

By only half time, France stormed to a 3-0 lead in a magnificent attacking performance. If Karim Benzema had not missed a penalty, there were possibilities for more. On the 17th minute, Olivier Giroud opened the scoring. Blaise Matuidi doubled Les Bleus’ lead only a minute later. In the 40th minute, Mathieu Valbuena then finished off a blistering counter to make it 3-0 at the break.

After the half time, Pogba unlocked Switzerland’s defense with a brilliant pass into the box toward Benzema. And Benzema finished this time to make it 4-0.

Still, they were not done yet. Just after two minutes, at 71st instant, Sissoko made it five at the other end. Watching deeply, you can easily figure out that Benzema was the catalyst again. He unlocked the Swiss defense. he helped the Switzerland vs France match end with +3 gd victory.

With time running down, the Switzerland side attempted to make an improbable comeback. Dzemaili and Xhaka added their two goals at the very last moments of the game.

Switzerland vs France: Aftermath

Les Bleus also benefited from an early injury. Von Bergen left the match in the ninth minute after having his face bloodied by Giroud’s boot. He was replaced by Philippe Senderos. France quickly gave Switzerland’s makeshift defense look ordinary.

 France went on top of the group E. They have six points already and undoubtedly qualifying for the next round.

On the other hand, Switzerland must regroup before facing Honduras on Wednesday. Goal difference can be the ultimate problem for them to qualify.

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Rafael Nadal wins his first European clay title of the season

Rafael Nadal wins his first European clay title of the season, Nadal, clay court, madrid open
Rafael Nadal ; image credit www.flickr.com

Another European clay title for Rafael Nadal. This the first of the season for him. And the 27th Masters Tournament victory of his career at the Madrid Open.

European clay title in Madrid:

His opponent Kei Nishikori was forced to retire through injury. Before that, Nadal had won seven straight games to lead 3-0 in the third set. Then the match was halted having lost the first set 6-2. And then it came for a break down to win the second 6-4.

Previously Nishikori was struggling with a back spasm. In Saturday’s dramatic semifinal victory over David Ferrer, he was badly injured. But he couldn’t understand this can haunt back again on Sunday game time.

He must be disappointed after losing his first European clay title in such an unfortunate manner. But still the Japanese can take comfort from his performances this week. As this is bringing him to the world top 10 for the first time. Probably in the latest ranking of Monday.

At the clay court in Madrid, Nishikori out-played Nadal for a set and a half with some aggressive shots. Some of them were big winners for him too.

It was clear after the trainer was called on seven games into the second set, that Nishikori‘s movement was inhibited. Rafael Nadal capitalized to break twice and level the match at a set apiece.

Probably the third set was an anti-climax. Rafael was easing ahead of his injured opponent before Nishikori decided he couldn’t continue any more of this game.

“I am very disappointed about what happened today in this final”

Said Nishikori after the match.

He acknowledged that the final was quite unfortunate for him. He tried his level best with being hurt. But after the game he congratulated Nadal as he believes that his opponent played too good. And so, Nadal was gracious in victory with the European clay title.

Rafael Nadal also felt sorry for his opponent. He knew well about the tough job against his opponent as he previously met him in London at the ATP World Tour.

“Winning at home is always more special than winning anywhere. To play in front of your home crowd… is unforgettable for me”

He added.

Sharapova rebounds back:

Maria Sharapova recovered from a horrendous start to defeat Romania’s Simona Halep 1-6, 6-2, 6-3 to claim the women’s title ( European clay title ).

She had previously lost the first four games of the match to the World No. 5. As a matter of fact she conceded the first set in less than half-an-hour.

The Russian turned things around as the game progressed. And now she wins seven of her last nine titles on a clay court.

The 27 year old, after the match said,

“Last year I lost in the finals and I really wanted to go one extra step this year.it has just been a fantastic week”

She believes that her opponent is now at another different level. It is clear from her come back from 64th position to number five in less than a year. So she is happy with the way she pulled it off.

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Chelsea seeking More Than Diego Costa and Mario Mandzukic for Next Season

Chelsea seeking More Than Diego Costa and Mario Mandzukic for Next Season, transfer to Chelsea, Atletico Madrid, Diego Costa
Diego Costa ; image credit en.wikipedia.org

Many saw his return to Stamford Bridge as being a major indicator the Blues would lift the Premier League trophy again. But their deficiencies eventually restricted them to a third-place finish. Champions League semi-final is also no surprise for them.

May be Chelsea is lacking a true world class striker. They have plenty of talent in defense and midfield. So their downfall is probably the cause of striker.

Chelsea mustn’t be planning for being undefeated against the top four in the league. It can be a better prospect for the teams like Aston Villa, Sunderland or Crystal Palace. As these are the present struggling teams. They soaked up pressure before striking. They could have liked a shock victory against their opponents.

This season ended for Chelsea a little bitter way. In some cases they progressed but they had to put an end without being able to punish their opponent squads.

Diego Costa and Mario Mandzukic:

Mourinho has already been quick to act for the remedy. He is waiting for Diego Costa from Atletico Madrid to arrive imminently. There is also another possibility. The Brazilian cum Spaniard could be joined in attack by another striker. This one is from Bayern Munich, Mario Mandzukic.

The World Cup event may be taking all the focus for the present month and half of the next. But these rumors prove that Chelsea have plenty of fans to be excited about even in this World Cup event.

Definitely, the potential of two big names (Diego Costa and Mario Mandzukic) arriving at Stamford Bridge will whet the appetite. Still, there are confusions about the other front men from the Blues.

The English media is expecting that Chelsea will be finding an entirely new front line for them, next season.

Everyone is expecting, Fernando Torres as the biggest casualty. Even Chelsea star Demba Ba’s future is questioned. Many suggesting him to join the Turkish club Besiktas.

Another thing, Samuel Eto’o’s one-year contract will expire shortly. He hasn’t been offered a renewal. Romelu Lukaku is also in doubt. Will he be trading places with Diego Costa at Aletico Madrid??

Regardless of the talent he acquired, Mourinho could well be placing himself in a weaker position if he offloads all four players as suggested.

Chelsea seeking More Than Diego Costa and Mario Mandzukic for Next Season, Mario Mandzukic, Croatia star
Mario Mandzukic ; image credit commons.wikimedia.org

Both the players Diego Costa and Mario Mandzukic have proven their undoubted qualities in recent seasons. But it’s very difficult to rely that much on just two front men to carry the Blues’ hopes. Even it’ll be risky for Mourinho himself.

Chelsea would become incredibly weak, if one of these players get suspensions, injury or even loss of form. Their rivals will not allow them such weakness endured.

Manchester city have already big stars like Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko, Stevan Jovetic and Alvaro Negredo. They just need to choose from. While Liverpool also added Rickie Lambert to their ranks.

This is not a rare story. Similarly each of the clubs in this continent is trying to boost up their front line with enviable forwards. May be Mourinho needs to do the same. Diego Costa and Mario Mandzukic can easily be the preference.

There is not many more options of clearing out the players who failed to prove themselves last season. The manager must find something more to flourish them. And this can be a greater solution for him.

Various times in the last stages of 2013 and 2014, Ba came to rescue Chelsea. He scored some the vital goals, especially against Paris Saint-Germain and Liverpool. Fernando Torres also proved in Europe. He scored five goals in ten Champions League matches.

When given an opportunity, Lukaku also scores for the team. Though he was much more successful in Everton. But he tries his best to find some space for the Chelsea team.

Now that, in a situation like this Mourinho must take a decision. A decision about the former strikers and the upcoming twos. The World Cup 2014 have already seen, Diego Costa failed to prove for the Spaniards. Mandzukic still going on with pace and beauty. He can become a great addition for the Blues.

Yes of course, again after 12 months, we will be here discussing the transitions at Stamford Bridge. But Mourinho must be needing some urge to accomplish as to reside with the Blues for some more. Then the statistics will also be with us about Diego Costa and Mario Mandzukic at Chelsea.

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fifa world cup 2014 football international football News flash recent

Cristiano Ronaldo is ready to start against United States

Cristiano Ronaldo is ready to start against United States, Portugal hope, World Cup 2014, ready against US
Cristiano Ronaldo ; image credit pt.wikipedia.org

The United States football team is pretty much hopeful against Portugal. Especially after the Germany vs Portugal match. Pepe saw red card before the half time because of head butting Thomas Muller. And after that Muller just went on to a hat-trick. Germany won the match 4-0.

But one thing USMNT must be worried about. Portugal’s star player, Cristiano Ronaldo was not at his best that day. He is not even fit right now. But may be ready for the game. Portugal is hoping for the Real Madrid star to Start against US.

The World NO. 1 player of the year, Cristiano Ronaldo scored 31 goals in 31 La Liga games for Real Madrid this season. During the final weeks of this season he was attacked with a knee injury. And finally he carried it out to the World Cup 2014, Brazil.

Cristiano Ronaldo is ready against US:

Most obviously, this kind of injury is hampering the player’s performance. He is struggling against it and before that he is quite ineffective for the team, which in turn making the whole eleven weak.

Plenty of news (mostly rumors) are swirling about regarding the superstar’s present condition. Team Portugal is even denying to reports on him. Some say, Ronaldo’s doctor advised him to drop out of the World Cup. He needs more time to recover. Otherwise it can harm his total career. even if everybody feels, Cristiano Ronaldo is ready.

Still the team has yet to release anything official on Ronaldo’s status. They are hopeful for the good second start. Though Cristiano Ronaldo himself is confident about the game. Some say, he is inspired even with risking his future career for the World Cup event. As he mustn’t be wanting to watch the dream World Cup sitting. His teammates are also hopeful. Probably Cristiano Ronaldo is ready truly.

Miguel Veloso, one of his teammate tries to sum things up optimistic,

“I’m not a doctor but, from what I see, Ronaldo is fine. He is training, he is jumping and he is shooting. There is not much else to say”

Coach Jurgen Klinsmann remains wary of Ronaldo’s threat. He can only hope, nothing more. As they need to survive this match to continue the journey for the lucrative Cup.

The USMNT coach said,

“Now they will come into Manaus pretty angry and I don’t know how Ronaldo is going to perform when he is angry”

He expects from his team, they will show their opponent that how good they are.

These words sounds more like they are preparing for a fully fit Ronaldo. That means Klinsmann is unlikely to show signs of complacency. Fans of USMNT would be happy learning this. They are in fact with advantage, as they will be through to the knockout stage just winning this particular match. Especially after Germany had a draw against Ghana Saturday night. Cristiano Ronaldo is ready to overcome the disadvantages.

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Brazil Vs Colombia: Neymar Jr. is out of the world cup with the broken back

neymar injury, brazil vs colombia, neymar
The moment of agony: image via: www.independent.co.uk

The newspapers on 5th July said it all. On Friday night, The host Brazil may have reached the semi-final beating Columbia, but the full cost of their quarter-final victory was being counted. Neymar Jr, the 22 year old super star of this world tournament, the player has kept the weight of Brazilian expectation with calm and some extraordinary good grace, is out of the world cup with a fractured vertebra.

It put thousands of football fans in mourning while watching a newsstand to see image after image of Neymar in agony, being stretchered off the pitch. As Neymar departed down the tunnel, a hush of agony fell over the Fortaleza Stadium as well as over the fan parks across Brazil. The news on O Tempo said that Brazil won the game but lost his star. The Lance demanded in their front page,

“ Play for him”.

“The World Cup was Neymar’s dream and for years he has been thinking about it”,

Neymar’s friend and agent Wagner Ribeiro said.

Neymar was flown to Galeao air base, Rio de Janeiro after the match. Then he was taken by ambulance to Grange Comay Hospital in Teresopolis, the Brazil training base. Outside the hospital, hundreds of fans gathered holding the banners saying “ Forca Neymar”. The phrase also trended on Twitter by Brazil’s 1970 World Cup winning Captain Carlos Alberto Torres. Now, all Brazil is with Neymar with a hope of his recovery and return to the pitch soon.

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Neymar on strecher—-image via: www.usnews.com

There was a burst of anger among the fans alongside the sadness and the realization of what this might mean to Brazil in winning the world cup on home soil. The headline of Extra said it all,

“ COVARDIA-cowardice.”

The match possessed 54 fouls in total, more than in any other game at this World Cup. However, 31 of them were committed by Brazil. Rotating the offender to avoid cards, tactical fouling, have been the pattern of Brazil’s play throughout this World Cup. The hosts committed 28 of total 51 fouls in their last match against Chile, the second most fouls match of this tournament.

If there was anger in Brazil, there was even more fury in Colombia too. The newspaper Hoy, Diario del Magdalena was in doubt who was to blame for their defeat. It screamed on the front page accusing the Spanish referee.

The incident of the injury didn’t seem noteworthy in the context of a robust game. Zuniga leapt for a high ball while Neymar didn’t. In that, he failed with the Colombian Defender Zuniga making clean contact with the ball. The Spanish referee Carlos Carballo decided the challenge as clean. The defender’s knee caught Neymar in the back in this incident. It is difficult to say whether there was a deliberate attempt to injure or whether he was simply trying retaining the balance.

For Zuniga it was a normal action. He said,

”I never intended to cause harm the player, although we have to play tough on the field.”

The former Brazilian striker and the World Cup top scorer Ronaldo mentioned the action ‘very violent’. The phenomenon sent his condolences to Neymar saying the whole country is proud of him. The team is now determined to win the world Cup and dedicate to him.

However, winning the hexa with Neymar in the Hospital and Thiago Silva in the bench will be harder than anytime for this Brazil team.

Lets see .

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Germany’s World Cup history against Argentina

Argentina booked their place in the final of the FIFA World Cup 2014 in Brazil, by defeating the Netherlands in the penalty shootout after 120 scoreless minutes on Wednesday. In Sunday’s historic clash Argentina’s will face the Giant Germany, who hammered the host Brazil in 7-1 victory.

Argentina vs Germany, THE HISTORY:

Argentina and Germany both have an extensive history in the World Cups. They have met 20 times in the past, but among them most notable are 1986 and 1990 World Cup finals meeting. Both of the finals are remembered as epic clashes in the World cup history.

The head-to-head:

With head-to-head nine wins and five draws, Argentina dominate the list, while Germany have won only six times. Despite of this there is an even goals balance (28 scored, 28 conceded) between these two giants.

The scenario is entirely different considering only competitive matches. In 2005 confederation cup the two sides drew scoring the result 2-2. The World Cup arena, they have fought six times. In that Germany won three times and twice they made the match draw. The Germans are commanding a record 11-5 goal difference with Argentina in the World Cup. In 1986 World Cup final, Argentina achieved their only World Cup win over Germany.

1986 World Cup Final:

In the final on 23th minutes Argentina was ahead with the goal from Jose Luis Brown. Jorge Valdano made the score 2-0 on 56 minutes. Then the ferocious Germany equalized the score when Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and Rudi Voller netted 2 goals within seven minutes. On 81th minutes the score was 2-2.

argentina's world cup win, argentina vs germany,1986 world cup final
jorge burruchaga scoring the winning goal—–image via: futbol.about.com

It was a showdown between the Argentine Diego Maradona and the German Lother Matthaus. It was an epic battle for them while Matthaus seemed to have Maradona’s number throughout the match. With six minutes left on the watch, Jorge Burruchaga found Maradona’s assist to find the net and made the history for Argentina.

1990 World Cup Final:

Four years after the historic win in Maxico City, Argentina and West Germany met again in the World Cup final in Rome.

Argentine struggled throughout the tournament to reach the final. The luck was with them as they beat Yugoslavia in the quarterfinal and Italy in the semi on penalties. They entered the final with four players suspended.

It was a close game from the beginning. Then the drama started when the sub Pedro Monzon was sent off for Argentina on 65 minutes.

Then on 85 minutes the German striker Rudi Voller adjucted to have drawn a foul by Roberto Sensini in the penalty box. Andreas Brehme stepped to shot a penalty kick and he netted the ball from the bottom-left corner. It decided the fate of the final. The drama didn’t end there. Shortly thereafter, argentina’s Gustavo Dezotti got himself sent off the ground.

germany vs argentina, 1990 world cup final
Andreas Brehme’s penalty—–image via: randomnonsenseaboutthings.blogspot.com

The last meeting, 2010 World Cup, quarterfinal:

Germany and Argentina met again in the 2010 World Cup quarterfinal, with the coach Maradona and magician Lionel Messi. Young German Muller’s goal was only the beginning of a rout by the Germans, who were 4-0 winners on the day after Klose scored a brace and Arne Friedrich slotted the only goal of his international career. The great Maradona was later dismissed from his position.

Nevertheless, it was 1990 finals when the either team won the world cup. So it will be a great motivation for both team. Hopefully the final will be hugely entertaining for the football world.

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James Rodriguez Transfers to Real Madrid: Latest Gossip Surrounding Monaco Star

Colombian star James Rodriguez, the breakout star at the 2014 FIFA World Cup has been drawing the attention of world’s top clubs, particularly the Spanish giant Real Madrid.

Real Madrid are quite interested in the Monaco product James Rodriguez and very much intended to make a run at him provided they can sell Angel Di Maria, the Argentine midfielder.

As the 23-year-old winger expressed his desire to make the move to Real Madrid if Madrid ultimately makes a deal with him. It turns out to be a mutual feeling between James Rodriguez and Real Madrid.

james rodrigues, transfer gossip, colombia
James Rodrigues, the Colombian Superstar——image via: www.mehrnews.com

James Rodriguez transfer rumor took its shape when he said,

”  It makes me proud that a club like Real Madrid is interested in me. It’s like a dream to play for Real Madrid.”

James Rodriguez’s transfer would bring a great deal of excitement and energy to Bernabeu, but not everyone is convinced that it would be a right move for him. Some believe that replacing Angel Di Maria with James Rodriguez would be a mistake.

Although Colombia was eliminated by Brazil in the quarterfinal at 2014 world cup, James Rodriguez’s performance was spectacular throughout the tournament. As the tournament’s top goal scorer, he leads superstars like Germany’s Thomas Muller and Argentina’s Lionel Messi in the Golden boot race.

Real Madrid is already stacked with several attacking talents like Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema and Gareth Bale. So it would be even deadlier adding someone like James Rodriguez to the fold.

James Rodriguez tailed 10 goals and 12 assists for Monaco in the last season. He is such a player who both scores and contributes. His skill would certainly bode well for Real Madrid.

Above all, Rodriguez is a young player, just 23 who continues to get better. He could potentially reach unseen levels of success at Bernabeu.

However, his current club Monaco may not be keen on giving Rodriguez up, but the offers that come their way from Real Madrid and other clubs may force their hands as well. Right now, James Rodriguez is the fastest-rising star in the football world and seeing him with Los Blancos would be a true treat for football fans worldwide.