Even at 48 years old, Gheorghe Hagi, unanimously considered Romania’s all-time greatest footballer, still has that legendary touch of 20 years ago.
In an all-star match between Galatasaray and Barcelona legends (Hagi played for both, and managed the Turkish side on two occassions) the ”The Maradona of the Carpathians” pulled off a sublime 180-degree pirouette pass with the outside of his boot. Of course, it found his teammate perfectly.
It looks like there is nothing Mesut Ozil can’t do right now. After three assists in four matches for the Gunners, the German international appears to have turned around the fortunes of the club. And in his latest act of greatness, Ozil brought out the ol’ gum-juggling trick during warm-ups before Arsenal’s clash with Swansea on Saturday.
Dubbed “the Magician” more than occasionally in both Germany and Spain, Ozil proves he indeed has quite a few tricks up his sleeve. If he ever needs any extra work or a new hobby after football, surely a stint working in the circus could be his next calling.
Youtube is more than just cat videos and dash-cam craziness. Every now and then a gem of ingenuity will be unearthed. Case in point: The above video of a flipbook highlighting Lionel Messi’s skills.
Watching it by itself would be entertaining enough, but the creator didn’t stop there. The effervescent Ray Hudson’s commentary (among others) is laid into the video.
(h/t 101 Great Goals)
Just not fair
DISCLAIMER: Might want to put the video on mute. Good grief, what choice of music!
As if Arsenal fans needed another reason to be pumped up about the Mesut Ozil signing, here’s a 2.5 minute compilation of disgusting backheel passes by the German assist master. Some of these are truly jaw-dropping!
It’s no wonder Ozil’s former Real Madrid teammates are furious over the club’s decision to sell the 24-year-old. Cristiano Ronaldo, who profited regularly from Ozil specials, has been quoted as saying he is livid over the sale, while Sergio Ramos has said “If it were up to me, Özil would be one of the last to go.”
It’s not hard to see why, but Real Madrid’s loss is the Gunners’ gain. Emirates will have lots of backheels to look forward to this season.
Pep Guardiola may now ply his trade in Germany, but that doesn’t mean his tiki-taka has been lost on Barcelona. This Barca TV footage before the Catalans’ friendly against Malaysia shows the signature one-touch passing game that has been integral to Barcelona’s success in recent years.
After seeing this, Malaysia’s XI must have known what was coming for them. They lost the match 1-3. However, Barcelona also received some bad news, as MOTM Cesc Fabregas (goal and two assists) was forced off early with an injury.
When it comes to legends games, it’s clear that many of the old timers are simply nowhere near their playing shape, often making for slow-paced games that don’t make for a necessarily good watch. That’s why you wonder how come they don’t play more of these futsal games. With less room to run and a bigger focus on tricks, it’s the perfect setting for legends to entertain and fans to recall their greatness.
Just check out the highlights of this futsal “Clasico” held in Kuwait between past Barcelona and Real Madrid greats. There’s Juliano Belletti fooling Madrid keeper Bodo Illgner not once, but twice, from long distance; then there’s Luis Figo busting out the skill moves at the 7:22 mark, and plenty in between.
Apparently, Michael Owen and (surprisingly) Illgner were the only ones out of the bunch still hip enough to know what Twitter is. Luckily, they provided some commentary and pictures for the rest of the world.
Didn’t think I’d be wearing this kit again in an El Classico. pic.twitter.com/WgIKaGqE8i— michael owen (@themichaelowen)
— michael owen (@themichaelowen)
Baia, Mendieta, Zambrotta, Belletti y Kluivert para el Barca. pic.twitter.com/aXY601l4VS— Bodo Illgner (@Bodo_Illgner)
Here we are mixing it with our old rivals pic.twitter.com/0jog1M45cK— michael owen (@themichaelowen)
In the end, Real Madrid’s legends came out on top, winning 9-5. Let’s hope that we see more of these futsal matches in the future.
Meet two-time defending World Freestyle champion Andrew Henderson. Andrew is good at juggling. Very, very, very good.
The 22-year old from England started doing freestyle tricks at the age of 15, and when it came time for Henderson to pick between university football and freestyle, he chose what he does best. Henderson now practices five hours per day, five days a week, and quite clearly all the hard work is paying off.
Kick back, relax, and don’t let your jaw hit the ground:
Video by STRskillschool
Raul, one of Europe’s greatest players ever, celebrated his incredible career with a testimonial match between his current side Al Saad and Schalke 04, for whom Raul played from 2010 to 2012.
The Champions League's all-time leading scorer swapped kits at halftime and contributed to Schalke's 9-0 romp over Qatar's national champion.
Appropriately, Raul scored a brace to get on the score sheet in his farewell, thanks to a penalty and this finger-lickin’ good assist by 19-year-old German prodigy Julian Draxler:
Despite recently extending his contract with Schalke through 2018, Draxler has already fielded — and rejected — offers from some of Europe’s top clubs willing to meet the €45m release clause, including Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea. And you can see why after his cheeky move.
After the match, Raul served homemade Spanish food to players and match officials as a way of saying thank you. “It’s an honor for me. Schalke is my home, blue and white forever,” Raul told the sellout crowd at Veltins-Arena.