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!

23
Aug

2022 World Cup final set to be played in city that doesn’t exist yet

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In case you don’t have enough doubts over Qatar hosting the 2022 World Cup, listen to this: the proposed site for the final is set in a city that doesn’t even exist yet!

Funded by the oil-rich Qatari government, the city of Lusail is currently being built from the ground up by around 20,000 workers at an estimated cost of $45 billion.

According to CNN, the government hopes the city will be completed by 2019. Lusail is expected to then contain a commercial district, a lagoon, four islands, two marinas, an upscale shopping mall, a hospital, a zoo, two golf courses, housing for 250,000 people and, of course, the stadium.

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From CNN:

Residents and visitors will get around via a light-rail network, a water-taxi system and a network of underground pedestrian tunnels. And all the energy, communications and transportation systems will be run with the help of computers from a single command center, making Lusail a “smart” city that can automatically adapt to changing traffic and weather conditions.

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Well then, that should ease all your concerns, especially those about the labor laws in Qatar….

H/T Deadspin

All images via CNN

22
Aug

This is probably the worst miss to happen in soccer ever

It is not an exaggeration to say that Junior Malanda will never, ever live this miss down. It has to be one of the worst — if not the worst of the worst — miss to ever happen in a soccer match. There aren’t words to do it justice, so just watch in awe.

Just…how? The ball was practically on the line already, he just had to push it over. A puppy could score that.

To make matters worse, Wolfsburg lost to Bayern, 2-1, and had Malanda managed to tuck that one away, it would’ve been a huge draw in their Bundesliga opener, and only their second point ever in Munich. It was not to be.

20
Aug

Man gets Man U tattoo because his name is already “Mr. Manchester United”

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Quite possibly the nuttiest football fan in the world, “Mr. Manchester United” — yes, that is his actual, legal name — now has United’s club badge tattooed on his forehead.

Our sources say that Mr. Manchester United got the tattoo out of fear nobody knew exactly just how big his love for Manchester United really was….

In all seriousness, the fan did offer an explanation for this to The Sun, and it is hilarious:

'The tattoo's my ID card,' he said. 'People don't look at me in a funny way, they look in admiration.' 'Now, whenever someone asks my name, I point to my forehead and smile. It makes me stand out and proves my loyalty to United,' he added.

Earlier this year, Zdravkov Levidzhov won a 15-year legal battle to change his name to Mr. Manchester United.

Mr. United drew inspiration for his name - and life - change after watching the Red Devils’ victory over Bayern Munich in the 1999 UEFA Champions League Final… on TV. (He wasn’t even there? Some fan!)

Oh, and his cat’s name is “David Beckham.” Of course it is.

(H/T and Image: The Sun)

20
Aug

Sergio Ramos punches Mario Mandzukic in the face, only sees yellow

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Three months after last season’s Champions League final, Atletico and Real Madrid faced off again on Tuesday night in the first leg of the Spanish Supercopa.

In the second half, new Atletico striker and former Bayern Munich man Mario Mandzukic reintroduced himself to Sergio Ramos, charging at and landing on top of the defender after a duel in the air.

None too pleased, Ramos retaliated whilst on the ground with a clean punch to Mandzukic’s jaw, a perfectly reasonable response in MMA fighting, not so much in a football match.

We’ll see if there will be any repercussions for Ramos in the next few days. We reckon that’s worthy of just a bit more than a yellow card.

20
Aug

Bayern Munich use magician, fireworks to unveil… new team bus

Bayern Munich pulled out all the stops for a huge club announcement on Tuesday. The German champions erected a big ol’ stage, set off fireworks and even hired a magician to… do what exactly?

Announce a new blockbuster signing? Unveil a dazzling new fan shop to rival Borussia Dortmund’s Fan World? Nope.

They revealed their new team bus.

Sigh….

You can go ahead and add this to the long list of reasons why Bayern are (not so) lovably known around the Bundesliga as “FC Hollywood.”

The kitchen is pretty epic though… for a bus:

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Getty Image

19
Aug

David Beckham joins the world in ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

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He did it, everyone! David Beckham has completed the ice bucket challenge (as has almost everyone else on the planet).

Beckham was nominated by Ryan Seacrest (who was nominated by… Bill Gates!) and in turn challenged Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan and Leonardo DiCaprio. That’s an all-star cast right there. Well done, Becks.

Seeing as Beckham was "slimed" at the Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards just last month, pouring a little bit of ice water over his head must have been a piece of cake:

Why is he on his knees, though?

Beckham joins a long list of soccer stars who’ve succumbed to the viral internet campaign raising awareness and funds to fight ALS. We’ve showed you Cristiano Ronaldo doing it in his underpants earlier this week, and here are a few more footballers:

Neymar

Mario Balotelli


Paul Scholes

Steven Gerrard

Gerard Pique and Shakira

Abby Wambach

Image: Reuters

19
Aug

Portland Timbers can’t be thrilled about the pitch conditions in Guyana

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We hear about it all the time.

Managers and players the world over have, at one time or another, blamed field conditions for poor results or unwatchable displays of football. And to be fair, some pitches have been truly horrendous. Remember the Cowboys Stadium turf for the International Champions Cup last summer? Or this water-logged pitch in Kazakhstan? Classic!

Well, those grounds look like a freshly cut and watered pitch at God’s personal Wembley Stadium up in heaven compared to what the Portland Timbers encountered in Guyana ahead of their CONCACAF Champions League tie vs Alpha United.

Not a joke: a professional soccer team actually plays here:

Man.

That… — can we call it a pitch’” — is actually mostly used for cricket, but that doesn’t explain why footballers have agreed to play here, or why Alpha United are allowed to host CONCACAF Champions League games in the first place. Really, there’s nowhere else you can play?

In any case, for the rest of time, no team is allowed to complain about field conditions ever again. Except the Timbers.

H/T SBNation

19
Aug

Neymar steals the show in Luis Suarez’s first Barca match

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So, uh, Neymar is back, you guys.

The Brazil star painted a sad figure at the World Cup this summer after breaking a bone in his back vs Colombia and missing the Selecao’s infamous last two contests. 

Just about six weeks later, Neymar returned to the pitch in Barcelona’s 6-0 friendly win over Club Leon, and boy did he show up.

First, he converted Andres Iniesta’s pass with a lovely chip over goalkeeper Will Yarbrough, before scoring on a cheeky little back-heel finish just before the halftime whistle. The fact Luis Suarez made his Barcelona “debut” was reduced to a footnote on the night.

Enjoy:

H/T Reddit

Photo: Reuters