20
Jun

Police investigating surprisingly able wheelchair fans at the World Cup

According to the Independent, police in Brazil are investigating incidents where supposedly disabled patrons have leapt out of their wheelchairs to celebrate goals. 

Fans were captured on CCTV and social media standing in the disabled section during the opening game at Sao Paulo. Police believe that tickets for the section were illegally transferred. 

FIFA has previously released tickets for the sections, citing a lack of demand. However, re-selling a ticket for more than face value is a crime in Brazil — and the disabled section tickets sell for less than half the cost of those in the regular sections.

Never ones to miss a chance for a joke, some Brazilians have cited the pictures as evidence that this World Cup is creating miracles. The police aren’t seeing the funny side of it, however.

(H/T Independent)

9
Apr

Ex-Valencia president arrested in plot to kidnap successor

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Trouble with the law: Former Valencia president Juan Soler (R) was arrested on Wednesday.

Former Valencia president Juan Soler has been arrested in connection with an attempt to kidnap his successor at the club, Vicente Soriano.

According to multiple reports from Spain, Soler spent the night in prison after facing magistrates over his alleged involvement in the plot, but was released on bail.

Under the terms of his bail, Soler, 58, cannot leave Spain while the investigation continues and must go to court every two weeks. He has also been issued a restraining order forbidding him from coming with 15 meters of Soriano.

Soler and Soriano’s contentious relationship escalated in 2009, when Soriano purchased Soler’s shares with the Spanish Primera Division side. Claiming he was still owed money in the transaction, Soler then took Soriano to court.

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In happier times: Vicente Soriano (L) purchased Juan Soler’s club shares in 2009.

Investigators believe the kidnapping plot, which Soler is suspected of hiring hit men to carry out, was an attempt to recover the funds in question. Police foiled the plot, however, and instructed Soriano to remain in his home.

Although both men are no longer associated with the Club — Amadeo Salvo is Valencia’s current president — it’s certainly a bizarre turn of events that we’ll be sure to monitor.

Images provided by Getty.

2
Apr

Homer becomes referee in ‘The Simpsons’ World Cup episode

The long-anticipated Simpsons episode revolving around the 2014 World Cup finally aired this week, and it didn’t disappoint.

After Homer Simpson referees one of Lisa’s soccer games and aptly punishes her for diving, our favorite yellow, beer-bellied hero immediately gets called up to officiate the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

There, his resolve is tested by the theatrics of a player dubbed “El Divo,” who has a penchant for — you guessed it — diving, and bribing officials.

As you can see in the video above, though, Homer is not intimidated, showing the kind of toughness that would make referee legend Pierluigi Collina proud.

Among the games Homer officiates are both the opening match, played between hosts Brazil and — wait for it — Luxembourg (!), as well as the final, Brazil vs Germany. Ahead of the final, Homer again must resist the urge of taking bribes, this time to ensure that Brazil will win. Homer heroically declines, and as a result Germany come out 2-0 winners.

His performances clearly impressed legendary Spanish commentator Andrés Cantor:

21
Nov

Neymar so great that Brazilian cocaine bears his likeness?

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This latest Neymar story is one we certainly didn’t see coming, but this picture from the folks over at 101GG.com pretty much tells you all you need to know:

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Yep. Those reportedly are vials of cocaine bearing Neymar’s picture. The purpose of putting the Brazilian wunderkind on the containers? Why, to indicate the quality is “great” of course, according to an arrested drug dealer.

We can only imagine what types of narcotics have a Pelé or Garrincha picture on them.

Just say no.

(h/t 101GG)

19
Aug

Bayern give jailed ex-player Breno part-time job as youth coach

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Former Bayern Munich defender Breno received a second chance from his ex-club 13 months after being jailed for setting his Munich villa on fire. The 23-year-old Brazilian will begin working as a part-time assistant youth coach at the Bayern academy while serving out the rest of his three-year and nine-month sentence, the club and player said on Monday.

Breno appeared at a news conference today with club president Uli Hoeness, and expressed his gratitude to Bayern for the chance.

"The time spent in prison, these 13 months, have been hard…I have changed as a person and I have learned a lot. I am happy to have been given this chance by Bayern."

Hoeness added: “Breno is a member of the Bayern family who once had problems. Now there is a glimmer of hope and we want to give it to him.”

Breno will apparently work a five-hour-day with the club as an assistant to the under-23 team, and then will return to prison each evening. Breno is petitioning for early release in 2014.

Breno was jailed in 2011 after he did this to his home:

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Fortunately, his family was not in the house at the time and there were no injuries, but Breno was later convicted of arson.

12
Jun

Trecker’s Brazilian Travels, Day 1: Appropriate starting point

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Photo: Jamie Trecker / FOX Soccer

By Jamie Trecker

BRASILIA, BRAZIL

Dawn. The city lies below the 757, an outpost on a craggy steppe. It looks like a toy, or maybe a prop until the plane descends further. The arcs of the city form two giant wings – or perhaps Orion, clutching a bow and firing an arrow toward Brazil’s coast.

Brasilia was to be Brazil’s great leap: a city that erupted whole cloth,  perfectly planned. It was to be a utopia of sorts, but it is not. It is, however, an architectural marvel, a modernist edifice that fifty years after its construction has the power to shock and amaze. It is also one of the places I had always wanted to visit.

I’m here because the Confederations Cup, something of a modernist construct itself, will kickoff here this Saturday. There is a lot of pressure on the hosts both on and off the field. Brazil’s staging of the 2014 World Cup has been somewhat star-crossed; budgets have been blown, strikes have been waged, protestors have marched and there is a weary sense that the government funds have been looted by this tournament.

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