25
Aug

La Liga minnows SD Eibar win top-flight debut on wonder goal

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SD Eibar made its La Liga debut this weekend and promptly celebrated their first three points thanks to a 1-0 home win over Real Sociedad. The club from the tiny Basque town of Eibar, which boasts a population of just over 27,000, also made sure the winning goal was a memorable one.

Midfielder Javi Lara buried a beautiful free kick from an impossible angle to etch himself forever in club lore:

The underdog of all underdogs, Eibar is the smallest club to ever to compete in La Liga and had to raise $2.3 million in capital just to keep its place in the league after earning promotion from the Segunda Divison.

Their home ground, Ipurua Stadium, holds just 5,900 spectators (there are plans to raise the capacity to a whopping 6,700). And now they’re playing the likes of Real Madrid and Barcelona, whose own arenas could hold three Eibars. The entire town. Three times.

We here at the Blog sincerely hope the magical ride continues for as long as possible. What a great story.

Image provided by Getty

GIF via Reddit

25
Aug

Portland Timbers unfurl epic ‘Wizard of Oz’ tifo ahead of Seattle Sounders clash

The Timbers Army is at it again.

As you would expect anytime the Seattle Sounders come to town, the fans in Portland conjured up an epic pre-match tifo to give their rivals a warm welcome to Providence Park for Sunday’s Cascadia Cup match.

This time, they really out-did themselves with a Wizard of Oz-themed tifo. A yellow brick road connected Dorothy holding a can of gasoline on one end, and a burning city of Seattle (appropriately known as the “Emerald City”) on the other. The message “There’s no place like home” hung right above it.

The tifo was absolutely brilliant. Their team? Well, the Sounders left Portland with a convincing 4-2 win over their bitter northwest rivals.

Check the tifo out in action, below:

Image provided by USA Today

25
Aug

Epic fail! Danish forward pulls own version of ‘Junior Malanda’ miss

We’re not sure anything will ever “top” Junior Malanda’s miss of the century in Friday’s Bundesliga opener, but AB Copenhagen’s Nichlas Rohde will come as close as you can possibly get.

The Danish forward managed to hit the simplest of rebounds off the post from just a yard out. Unlike in Malanda’s epic miss, the ball was flat on the ground after the opposing goalkeeper made the initial save - but to give Rohde the teeniest bit of credit, the goalkeeper was still somewhat in the picture, and he did hit the post…

No, you’re right. Still no excuse.

H/T Pies

24
Aug

Black cat invades Camp Nou pitch during Barcelona’s La Liga opener

imageThe Blaugrana will be hoping the furry pitch invader in their La Liga home opener isn’t a sign of things to come this season.

Just as their match against Elche kicked off, a rather adorable black cat ran rampant on the pitch for a good few minutes, sprinting the length of the pitch before it was eventually wrangled by a steward.



If Barcelona has some kind of disastrous or unlucky or ‘cat’-astrophic season, we all know who the Camp Nou faithful will blame.

Image: Josep Lago, Getty Images

24
Aug

Marseille’s Dimitri Payet hits scoreboard with wayward corner kick

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It’s quickly becoming an epidemic: Nobody can take corner kicks anymore.

First, it was Nantes’ Serge Gakpe. Then it was Keisuke Honda.

Now, this:

Olympique Marseille’s Dimitri Payet was able to accomplish a nearly impossible feat: Hitting Guingamp’s scoreboard with this horrendous corner.

Were it not for the scoreboard, who knows where the ball would have landed. Out of the stadium? Out of the atmosphere? Sadly, we’ll never know.

H/T Reddit

Image provide by Reuters.

24
Aug

Athletic Bilbao keeper’s last-gasp equalizer disallowed for mystery foul

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You’ve got to feel for Gorka Iraizoz.

The Athletic Bilbao goalkeeper did what few of his contemporaries have done before him — score a goal from a set piece. Even better, Iraizoz’s textbook header off the 95th-minute free kick had given his side an unlikely late equalizer against Malaga.

If it wasn’t for that heartless referee Antonio Mateu, that is.

The match official called the goal back for a mystery foul, crushing Iraizoz’s dreams to finally etch his name into the La Liga scoring charts and Athletic Bilbao lore.

Here, see if you can spot a foul. We’ll wait:

H/T Pies.

Image provided by Reuters.

24
Aug

LA Galaxy’s Robbie Keane provides ugliest assist of all time

Robbie Keane tallied the perhaps worst assist you’ll ever see Saturday night vs the Vancouver Whitecaps.

The LA Galaxy forward completely fluffed a shot in the penalty area, but the ball somehow trickled over to Marcelo Sarvas, who slotted it home. Keane even turned away in disgust after his whiff, but now he’s got another assist on his stat sheet:

Just how he drew it up!

GIF via Reddit

23
Aug

Leverkusen’s Karim Bellarabi scores fastest goal in Bundesliga history

imageBayer Leverkusen’s Karim Bellarabi scored the fastest goal in the Bundesliga’s 52-year history, needing just nine seconds to bury one past Borussia Dortmund keeper Roman Weidenfeller in the match of the day:

Bellarabi silenced the sold-out Signal Iduna crowd, slotting home after taking Sebastian Boenisch’s pass and dancing past new Dortmund signing Mathias Ginter.

Nine seconds. Simply amazing.

Image: Getty Images

23
Aug

FIFA magazine allows itself a sexist quote in feature about Sepp Blatter

As if Sepp Blatter needed any more help in making himself look like a sexist clown, the latest edition of the official FIFA magazine included a feature on its president containing a stupidly offensive passage about the fairer sex:

Blatter went on to make the most of his opportunities, both on and off the pitch, ascending to the FIFA throne on 8 June 1998. From that seat of power in the world game, Blatter has endeavoured to inject new impulse into the sport. The ball may still be round but there have been numerous changes since the era of Sepp Herberger. 
The laws of the game are obeyed by everyone, be they Zulus, Shiites, Muslims, Jews, Kurds, Creoles or any other race - and they are also, reluctantly, followed by Blatter’s numerous detractors. Football is a simple game that only becomes complicated once you attempt to explain the active and passive offside rules to your wife.

This was printed in the official FIFA magazine. That’s some PR department they have over there, huh? It’s as if the world football governing body forgot they also host the Women’s World Cup, not just the Men’s.

And this in an article about a guy who’s made so many mind-blowingly disparaging comments that we’ve had to compile a list of his worst blunders.

What planet does FIFA live on?

Image: Action Images

23
Aug

Did Cristiano Ronaldo deliberately punch Diego Godin last night?

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In the final minute of Atletico Madrid’s 1-0 victory Friday night over Real Madrid, Cristiano Ronaldo appeared to punch Atletico defender Diego Godin in the head on a corner kick. The two got tangled up in the box as Real were desperately searching for an equalizer, and Ronaldo seemed to smack Godin to the ground out of frustration.

When you see it again in slow motion (below), it certainly looks like Ronaldo landed not one, but two hay-makers on Godin’s dome, and though we can’t say for sure, the second one seems somewhat intentional. Should La Liga share our view, anything other than a multiple-match suspension would be a surprise.

Also, we see you Sergio Ramos. Attempting a “Hand of God” goal, there? Nothing gets past the FOX Soccer Blog!