Do Football – Soccer Players Get Paid Too Much Money?

I saw the other day a club chief executive moaning about the wages the club pays to the players at the club, I can’t remember who he was but it just annoyed me. There he was smoking a big cigar, driving a brand new Bentley, doing nothing for the club, bar taking a big fat pay packet of his own while not actually getting out on the pitch and making a difference for the club.

Now don’t get me wrong I think he had a point. There are players at every club that just because they are being paid at all means they are receiving too much. But it’s the fact that the people that are telling us players get too much are the ones that are taking money away from the game that makes me think that maybe players are not getting paid too much.

Though having said that a lot do get riches beyond the amount their ability deserves. A few examples spring to mind immediately: Robbie Savage, OK a good player but is he really that good, that he is able to afford to drive a Ferrari? Not in my eyes he’s not. He is far too busy play acting for my liking. Then there is Tim Sherwood, OK he may of won a League Championship medal while at Blackburn but was he really anything other than a good player?

Again I would say no, he was just lucky to be playing in the EPL before the big star influx raised the level of ability needed to make it. but at a time when the big money had entered the game. But in my view the biggest example of an overpaid footballer is Ian Walker, surely the worst ‘keeper the EPL has seen, even when he dropped down a flight with Leicester he was no better than average.

However, when you see the likes of Gianfranco Zola, Thierry Henry, Ronaldinho and Pavel Nedved. These are players that make a match worth watching just to see them, it doesn’t matter what team they play for it’s all about them and their ability to produce magical skills that make your jaw drop in admiration.

Maybe a better answer to the question would be yes some are, but no others are not. Though of course that doesn’t make for good headlines when a player signs a new contract.

Lets be honest how many Manchester United fans begrudge Roy Keane a single penny he made from the club? But that didn’t stop the newspapers whining about the massive sums he was making, well so what? It is nothing compared to the sums that the likes of Martin Edwards made from Manchester United yet Edwards was not the one out on the pitch knowing that his career could be over tomorrow if he receives a bad challenge.

Sometimes I think its just jealousy that creates these headlines about overpaid players, or maybe its just a complete lack of anything interesting to write that leads to it? Either way I would rather they gave both sides of the story before whinging about it. I mean how about a list of the directors and shareholders of a club and how much they took in wages, bonuses and dividends? So that we can have a reference point to compare player’s wages to. I would especially like to know how much the likes of Peter Ridsdale made from Leeds.

To my mind the only way forward is to take clubs back into the hands of the fans, like Wimbledon AFC and FC United. Let’s have all their finances completely transparent, and get rid of agent’s involvement in transfers. Surely the PFA could offer that as one of their services to their union members, after all they certainly have the money. Surely all clubs need to do transfers between themselves is a solicitor, a representative and an FA, UEFA or FIFA or whoever representative to make sure it is all legal and above board.

I know this will never happen as too many people are busy creaming off money from the game to line their own pockets. But at the end of the day it should be about the fans – the players should all be on performance based contracts so they can earn massive amounts but only if the club does well and the ticket prices should be as low as possible so that as many fans as possible can afford to go.

Still this will never happen because too many people would lose out and at the end of the day football is no longer a sport it is a business and that will unfortunately never change.

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Premier League Match Time: Bolton Vs Blackburn

It's Premier League match time at Reebok Stadium on Sunday, December 12, as Bolton host Blackburn in match week 17.

Bolton are coming off a 1-0 loss away to Man City in match week 16. Bolton had a mediocre outing in which Davies and Elmander were completely stifled by the Man City back-line. Joe Hart between the Manchester City posts was hardly tested, barring a free kick by Petrov that Hart kept out easily, and a Ricketts free-kick that almost helped Bolton equalise owing to an error by the 'keeper.

Owen Coyle's squad could not capitalise on a 10-man City after Kolarov was sent off in 79th minutes for a rough tackle on Ricketts.

Blackburn atoned for their abject 7-1 thrashing by Manchester United in match week 15 with an impressive 3-0 win against Wolves built on the back of Pedersen's set-piece wizardry. The Norwegian had a hand in each of the two goals by Dunn, and Nelsen.

Early in the game, Blackburn's back-line was found wanting, particularly Salgado who was slow on his feet, and Wolves had scoring opportunities in the first 15 minutes. But it was Salgado's long ball to Richards that set up the second goal on 42 minutes after Emerton latched onto the ball flicked into his path by Richards, to get a left-footer home. Robinson had a good day between the posts for Blackburn as he kept out several scoring attempts by Wolves.

After Bolton are firmly ensconced in sixth place after 16 games, while Blackburn who went up to eighth could be leapfrogged by Sunderland, Newcastle or Liverpool after their respective games in match week 16.

Head to head, in 22 league matches between the sides, Blackburn enjoy a 8-3 win-loss ratio against Bolton, with 11 games drawn.

Bolton's home record has been reasonable with a solitary loss in eight games hosted, but they would want to improve on their win percentage with just three of those games won with the remaining four drawn.

Blackburn's away record has been good, too, with the Rovers losing just 2 of eight games on the road, with four wins.

On current form, you can expect a hard-fought game between two well-matched teams.

The following players were in Bolton's starting eleven against Man City: Jaaskelainen, Ricketts, Cahill, Knight, Robinson, Lee, Davies, Muamba, Petrov, Elmander and Davies. Taylor, Moreno and Klasnik played as substitutes.

Blackburn's starting eleven against Wolves comprised Robinson, Salgado, Samba, Nelsen, Givet, Jones, Emerton, Dunn, Pedersen, Diouf and Roberts. The substitutes used were Diouf, Morris and Mwaruwari.

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Great win over Palace we played good all game and didn’t let Palace have the bal…

Great win over Palace we played good all game and didn’t let Palace have the ball without any pressure on and we won the ball many times in the middle. Also Lucas were clinical today with two shots and two goals. #coys #spurs #tottenhamhotspur #lucasmoura

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5 NBA Players Who Experienced Life-Changing Events

In basketball, a competitor must be able to deliver a good show, whether it be using sheer talent, work ethic, or drive to succeed. This is an especially daunting task considering the sheer fragility of a player’s mentality. Often times in the sports world today, a player’s mindset is so fragile that it could easily alter their playing style. Whether it completely deteriorates or slightly shifts their skill, their careers, and lives, are forever altered by their experiences. Here are five former NBA stars and how their experiences changed their lives from that point on.

Kermit Washington

An All-American during his collegiate career at American University, Kermit Washington certainly would have looked forward to an exciting NBA career. He was selected with the fifth overall pick in the 1973 NBA Draft by the Los Angeles Lakers, who were coming off their second consecutive trip to the NBA Finals. Although he struggled to stand above ordinary his first two seasons, he began to emerge during the following two, setting career highs in points and rebounds during his fourth season. However, during his fifth season, an on-the-court incident would change his career and life forever. The Lakers had been involved in notable on-the-court physical entanglements throughout the early 1977-78 season, and Washington was known for his fierce devotion towards his teammates. It is believed these instances caused Washington’s career-changing game, on December 9, 1977 against the Houston Rockets. When the Lakers missed a shot, Washington, known as a strong rebounder, pursued the ball. Then things grew physical. Washington’s Lakers teammate and Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame inductee Kareem Abdul-Jabbar began fighting with the Rockets’ Kevin Kunnert (who grabbed the rebound instead of Washington), and Washington stayed away from the fight until Abdul-Jabbar and Kunnert broke up the fight. Then he began fighting with Kunnert until Abdul-Jabbar grabbed Kunnert in an effort to break up the fight, only to have Kunnert punched by Washington. Then Kunnert’s teammate Rudy Tomjanovich came to the fight scene. Believing that Tomjanovich, who had a reputation as a peacekeeper who rarely fought, was trying to attack him, Washington punched Tomjanovich to the nose. As Tomjanovich fell to the hardwood and instantly bled, the arena fell silent. Although Tomjanovich was able to walk off the court, he subsequently was diagnosed with a broken skull, jaw, and nose. He also had bled internally and spinal disc herniation so severe that spinal fluid leaked into his mouth. Although Tomjanovich recovered, his playing style was never the same, and by 1981, he had retired after merely eleven years in the NBA. As for Washington, a label as the man who nearly killed Rudy Tomjanovich would haunt him for the rest of his career. He was suspended for the ensuing 26 Lakers games, and the Lakers constantly received mail for fans that berated Washington. On December 27, he was traded to the Boston Celtics, only to be traded to the San Diego Clippers in 1978, and then to the Portland Trail Blazers in 1979. Feeling that he was readily welcomed by teammates and fans, Washington decided to return his focus to the game. In 1980 he was voted to the NBA All-Star Game. He was also voted to the first of two consecutive appearances on the NBA All-Defensive Second Team. He retired in 1982, but returned for a brief comeback in 1987 with the Golden State Warriors. His post-NBA life since his retirement has been embattled by the negative attention stemming from the 1977 fight.

Magic Johnson

«Magic» is not this legendary NBA player’s legal name. His real name was Earvin Johnson, but his nickname «Magic» is well-deserved. Selected with the first overall pick by the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1979 NBA Draft, Johnson was entering the prime decades of the historic Lakers franchise. Eventually, «Magic» had it made. Not only was he a member of the five Lakers teams that won NBA Championships during the 1980s, but also left his mark as an individual player. Voted to the NBA All-Star game 10-plus times, while also labeled as NBA Most Valuable Player three times, he led the league is assists 4 seasons and led the league in steals 2 seasons. Additionally, he was named NBA Finals MVP in three of the Lakers’ five victories. At this stage, «Magic» was well-deserving of his title, as he was seemingly a man with superhuman powers who could dominate every time he stepped on to the court. But in 1991, the year after he was named NBA MVP the third time, his life was forever altered. A medical examination proved that Johnson, who was only in his early thirties, had contracted Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), a serious disease which decelerates the immune system and makes the host susceptible to other diseases. Johnson decided to announce his intention to retire from the NBA to focus on his health, as he had contracted a serious disease that could have threatened his life. It remains unknown as to what is the clear source of Johnson’s condition. Johnson’s final game before going into retirement was the 1992 NBA All-Star Game. Even though several players opposed his entry into the game, fearing the spread of his disease, Johnson played and was crowned the game’s MVP, before he was emotionally applauded by players on both sides for his many successful years of service to the league. But very shortly after, he was named a member of the historic 1992 Team USA Olympic Basketball team, which also featured Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, Patrick Ewing, Scottie Pippen, Larry Bird, and others. After their illustrious Olympic journey, Johnson went into retirement, supposedly for good. In 1994, he returned to the Lakers as an assistant coach. At last, in 1996, he returned as a player to the Lakers, averaging a decent 14.3 points per game in 32 appearances before retiring a final time. Since retiring, Johnson started the Magic Johnson Foundation to provide for those battling HIV like him. He has also pursued business ventures such as being an owner of the Lakers, while also working as an NBA expert analyst. As well, he has received the highest honor of any basketball player: Induction into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. All in all, the life of «Magic» was forever changed after his HIV diagnosis. Just before his diagnosis, it didn’t seem like his career would end like the way it did. But Johnson made the decision to retire (the first time) to focus on his health while still in his prime. Even though he remains today in good health and good hope, both his career and his life decisions were all shaken, even to the least bit, by his HIV diagnosis.

Michael Jordan

Nicknamed «Air Jordan» for his ability to jump and nearly fly, Michael Jordan is perhaps the most decorated NBA figure of all-time. From the beginning of his career when he was the third overall pick in the 1984 NBA Draft, he showed promise and talent while spending his career with the Chicago Bulls, which was one of the most anonymous teams in the NBA prior to his arrival. During his first nine NBA seasons (1984-93) Jordan was an NBA All-Star eight times, including one crown as All-Star Game MVP. He was NBA Rookie of the Year in 1985. He was also NBA Defensive Player of the Year in 1988. From 1987 to 1993, he was the NBA scoring leader, and NBA steals leader in 1988, 1990, and 1993. As well, he was NBA Most Valuable Player in 1988, 1991, and 1992. Additionally, he won the Bulls three division titles in 1991, 1992, and 1993, which were the same years that the Bulls ascended to become NBA Champions. The Bulls, who had won just one division title in their 25 pre-Jordan seasons, were blessed to have him on their roster and dreamed of him being a longtime Bull. Unfortunately, everything changed for the perennial scoring champion Jordan in 1993. His father, James Jordan, had been driving on a highway in North Carolina when he was attacked by two teenagers, who killed James Jordan before evading the scene. Police managed to track down the suspects, who were identified as Daniel Green and Larry Demery and later convicted of murder and imprisoned. For Michael Jordan, the news was shocking as his father had been very close to him. Shortly after hearing about the incident, Jordan announced his retirement from the NBA, to focus on other aspects more important than the game to him. He revealed that the death of his father opened greater priorities to him than his role with the Bulls and the NBA. But quickly after retiring, he decided to become a professional baseball player, as his father had seen him as a promising baseball player as a child. But after a brief and unspectacular career in baseball, Jordan decided to go back where he belonged: Basketball. Almost immediately after returning to the NBA, Jordan picked up where he left off with NBA superstardom. The Bulls ended up winning three more division titles as well as NBA Championships in the years 1996, 1997, and 1998. He was named NBA MVP two more times, in 1996 and 1998. Additionally, he led the NBA in scoring from 1996 to 1998. Jordan once again retired in 1998. He briefly returned to the NBA as a member of the Washington Wizards, from 2001 to 2003, before retiring for the last time. Now Jordan has pursued several business ventures, including being an owner of the NBA’s Charlotte Bobcats. He has been inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, and remains today as one of the most prolific basketball figures of all-time. However, his career and life were shaken, even to the slightest bit, by the death of his father. After his father died, «Air Jordan» forever needed to carry the thought in his mind that he will need to live the rest of his life without his father. But he was able to keep his love of the game as a top priority, and ascended to become perhaps the most iconic basketball figure in our minds.

Dennis Rodman

Nicknamed «The Worm» for his agility on the court as well as his utterly ferocious defensive play, Dennis Rodman found his niche in containing opposing players from scoring opportunities, thus highlighting himself as one among the greatest defensive players in NBA history. He was drafted in the second round of the 1986 NBA Draft by the Detroit Pistons, with the 27th overall pick. The Pistons at the time were nicknamed the «Bad Boys» at the time for their rough defensive play. Within a matter of years, «The Worm» was an icon for the Pistons. He had been named NBA Defensive Player of the Year in 1990 and 1991. He was also an NBA All-Star in 1990 and 1992. He was additionally named to five NBA All-Defensive First Teams from 1989 to 1993. In 1992 and 1993, he led the league in rebounds. He also aided the Pistons to three divisions titles, including two seasons, in 1989 and 1990, where they ascended to become NBA Champions. With great physical skill and strong motive to keep opposing players with as few scoring opportunities as possible, it seemed like «The Worm» would be a lifelong Bad Boy in Detroit. But, between 1992 and 1993, Rodman would experience a series of traumatic events that would change his personality and outlook on the NBA permanently. In 1992, Pistons head coach Chuck Daly resigned his position. This was difficult for Rodman as he had viewed Daly as more than a coach to him. The following year, Rodman’s wife Annie Bakes divorced from him, which added further tension to Rodman. During this time Rodman pondered committing suicide. But then ultimately decided that he had been unhappy mainly because he had been exhibiting a shy personality that did not show his true colors, and wanted to be happy exhibiting his true personality. Before the 1993-94 season, Rodman was traded to the San Antonio Spurs, where he began exhibiting his new character. He frequently dyed his hair and shaved his head. He also became notorious for frequently getting into scuffles with others on the court. Rodman’s stint in San Antonio lasted only two years. Even though he was NBA rebounding leader both of those years, he failed to make it to the NBA All-Defensive First Team, as his time in San Antonio was characterized primarily by eccentric behavior. But his career returned to the high point in 1995 when he was traded to the team that he had perhaps despised the most during his time as a Detroit Piston: The Chicago Bulls. The Bulls had, in the wake of 1990s, had pushed aside the power of Rodman and the rest of the Detroit Pistons and won themselves their first three NBA titles. But their dynasty seemed to subdue following the 1993 retirement of habitual Bulls scoring icon Michael Jordan. But 1995 was the year it all came back, with Rodman playing the most iconic style he had since his days with the Pistons. Although he continued to display obscene behavior on the court with his hair and fights on the court, his role on their time was highlighted by his fourth, fifth, and sixth consecutive rebounding title and his feeding to the bulls their fourth, fifth, and sixth division title as well their fourth, fifth, and sixth NBA Championship. After his surprising release in 1998, Rodman spent the 1999 and 2000 NBA season, respectively, with the Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Mavericks. But following his NBA career, he landed in multiple altercations with the public due to his obscene behavior. He has been arrested multiple times for suspected charges such as assault and driving under the influence of alcohol. He has also checked into drug rehabilitation after multiple drunken antics, including an instance where he entered rehab following an erratic scuffle on the popular reality show The Celebrity Apprentice. But he was forever known for his stardom on the basketball court, and in 2011, he was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. All in all, his life was forever changed following the year 1993. His life on the court as well as off the court was never the same. Although he was able to maintain his name as a potent player, he no longer showed the humility and calmness that had been with him as a Detroit Piston. One can simply look at the year 1993 and say that it is the reason behind Dennis Rodman as we know him.

Latrell Sprewell

This is an example of a player whose potential as a player was unfortunately overshadowed permanently by a negative altercation that occurred early in the career. The Milwaukee native had a college career that caught the attention of the Golden State Warriors front office in the early 1990s. The Warriors claimed Sprewell with the 24th overall pick in 1992, kickstarting what seemed like a future Hall of Fame career. Sprewell was voted to the NBA All-Rookie Second Team in 1993. But that was just the start of the party, as Sprewell would make back-to-back All-Star stints in 1994 and 1995, before coming back in 1997. Additionally, in 1994 Sprewell was named a member of the All-NBA First Team and NBA All-Defensive Second Team after starting in all 82 regular-season games and posting career highs in rebounds per game and steals per game. But the love affair between Sprewell and the Warriors ended abruptly, following an incident the Bay Area front office will never forget. In a December 1997 practice, head coach P.J. Carlesimo reportedly criticized Sprewell’s passing, and allegedly received a threat from Sprewall in what seemed like a warning sign. When Carlesimo subsequently approached Sprewell, Sprewell resorted to grabbing Carlesimo into a chokehold and threatening to kill him. Within ten seconds, multiple teammates had begun pulling them apart. Sprewell was subsequently criticized by Carlesimo once again, responding by punching Carlesimo’s face. The incident quickly spread throughout the NBA, becoming an object of uproar among players, officials, and fans. Within a matter of hours, Sprewell’s contract was terminated by the Warriors (along with what could have been 3 years and $23.7 million) and Sprewell was suspended from the NBA for the remainder of the 1997-98 NBA season. While Sprewell’s reputation had received a permanent scar, he was able to piece his playing style back together, returning to the All-Star game in 2001 as a member of the New York Knicks. He also became part of the NBA’s highest scoring trio along with Kevin Garnett and Sam Cassell in 2003-04 as a member of a Cinderella Minnesota Timberwolves team that advanced past the first round of the playoffs and breathed the sweet smell of a first Conference Championship appearance in franchise history. While his playing style seemed unscathed, his still aching reputation hit another low point, when he reportedly expressed public outrage toward a 3-year, $21 million contract offer to extend him beyond the final year of his Timberwolves contract. He claimed that even the $21 million would not be enough to feed his family in a statement that the NBA fanbase deemed as blatant. As a result, he would not be resigned after his final year in the Twin Cities turned out to be his final year in the NBA. Since his mercurial NBA career ended, Sprewell has struggled financially and legally. Between 2007 and 2008 he would make headlines after a his $1.3 million property was repossessed and his two houses were foreclosed. Additionally, he was sued by the mother of his children for an estimated $200 million and was barred from custody of his children. He has also struggled with the negative reputation that has stemmed from his NBA woes. In 2010, he was ranked as #8 on Bleacher Report’s article Hi Haters: The 15 Most Hated NBA Players of All Time.

«It takes a lifetime to build a good reputation, but you can lose it in a minute». – Will Rogers.

This popular quote has been extensively used in modern civilization, meant to show that destroying something like a reputation is not a hard thing to do, but building it is no easier. Just like that, NBA players carry enormous responsibility. Any sport is a minefield of emotion, and emotion without responsibility can easily ruin a career and reputation. But sometimes, emotion is hard to control, as it is as fast as thought itself. But bottom line, a sport is like juggling balls. Once you take a moment while juggling even to take a sneeze, you will lose track of the balls. While you can regain control, it is much easier to maintain control in the first place and be able to stop the flying juggling balls on your own command.

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Who Will Lift the Premier League Trophy Next Season?

With the start of the new Barclays Premier Season only forty-nine days away, supporters across the globe have already begun marking the days off their calendars. Ever since the completion of last season on May 24th, several of the proverbial 'bigs' team have made additions to their squads. So the looming question is; Who will lift the Premier League Trophy next season? Of course, Chelsea are the favorites having won last year, but they will have to overcome several difficult opponents if they hope to retain their trophy.

One of the teams who will push them close is Manchester United. In Louis Van Gaal's first season in charge, the Red Devils finished fourth and gave Chelsea a scare both times they played. That being said, a lot of pundits still believe that United will not have the quality to push for the title. So far this summer, they have signed young Memphis Depay from PSV Eindhoven for an estimated £ 25 million. Having played under Van Gaal in the 2014 World Cup, Depay will fit into his new team with ease. Another team that will compete with Chelsea is Arsenal. The Gunners finished in third place last season and retained the famous FA Cup.

However, the season ended up being a disappointed one due to the team being unable to close out matches. So far the team from London have not confirmed any signings. In previous years this has been the unraveling of the team. Rather than sign top quality players, they would resort to only buying when there is value in the market. The number one position on Arsenal's wish list is that of a striker. With Olivier Giroud scoring only 19 goals last season, Arsenal supporters have been crying out for a new striker since the opening day of the transfer market. All in all, unless Arsenal sign a world class striker to support Giroud, they won't come close to winning the league. The third and final team that will challenge Chelsea is Manchester City. They had a dreadful season last year, in which they finished second and won no major honors. Among the disappointing results, there was also several reports of players falling out with manager; Manuel Pellegrini. This lead to the Chilean only barely holding onto his job. However, a team as rich as City will have no trouble selling the bad eggs and replacing them with phenomenal players. So to the dismay of millions, it seems as though Chelsea are the favorites. Manchester United, Arsenal, and Manchester City will fight, but do not be surprised if you see Chelsea's captain John Terry lifting the trophy yet again.

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Olympic Facts – 2008 Olympic Football Tournament

Great Britain did not qualify for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing. It won three Olympic titles: Paris 1900, London 1908 and Stockholm 1912. In 2012, Great Britain will serve as organizer of the Olympic Games.

The Brazilian Olympic football team will go to Beijing looking forward the first gold medal. This team will no doubt be the nucleus of the nation’s squad for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Brazil did not compete in the Olympic football tournament 13 times: Paris 1900, Saint Louis 1904, London 1908, Stockholm 1912, Antwerp 1920, Paris 1924, Amsterdam 1928, Berlin 1936, London 1948, Melbourne 1956, Moscow 1980, Barcelona 1992, Athens 2004.

From 1952 to 2004, Hungary has won 5 Olympic medals, including 3 golds. It has more gold medals than Brazil (3), Argentina (3) and Nigeria (1).

The Honduran men’s national team will travel to Beijing to attend the Olympics. Honduras will make its first appearance in the Peoples Republic of China. Tegucigalpa does not have full diplomatic relations with Beijing. Honduras won the 2008 CONCACAF Olympic Qualification Tournament in Nashville, Tennessee (USA). This Central American country surprised the world with its triumph…

Belgium has had famous football players: Wilfried van Moer, Raoul Lambert, Ruddy Smidts, Marc Emers, Danny Boffin, Marc Degryse and Marc Wilmost. In 1920, Belgium won the Olympic title.

Cote d’Ivoire -also known as Ivory Coast- qualified for the 2008 Olympics. This African team representing Africa at the 2006 FIFA World Championships in Germany. It is one of the best teams in Africa. «We are one of the few African countries to have an organized youth league. Great players have always come out of the Ivory Coast; I’m thinking of Laurent Pokou in the 1970s; and Youssou Fofana in the 1980s. But now the footballing infrastructure is much better and so many youngsters are getting the right coaching», said Henri Michel (former coach of the Cote d’Ivoire national soccer team). Ivory Coast won the African Cup of Nations in 1992.

Argentina has famous coaches: Cesar Luis Menotti, Carlos Salvador Bilardo, Daniel Passarella, Ramon Diaz, Jose Peckerman, Marcelo Bielsa…

The Serbian men’s national team will travel to Beijing for its first Olympics. Football is the most popular sport in Serbia (formerly Serbia & Montenegro).

Mexico did not qualify for the 2008 Olympics. It competed in the Olympic Soccer Tournament 8 times: London 1948, Tokyo 1964, Mexico City 1968, Munich 1972, Montreal 1976, Barcelona 1992, Atlanta 1996, Athens 2004.

The People’s Republic of China made its debut at the 1988 Summer Olympic Games in South Korea…

Argentina -FIFA 1978 world champion and junior world champion- boycotted the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow. It had won the South American Olympic Football Qualification Tournament. Argentina was replaced by Venezuela.

The Italians are Europe’s best hope of reaching the finals. Italy won the gold medal at the 1936 Summer Olympic Games in Berlin. This European country is well known for its great tradition in soccer.

Brazil will have both its soccer teams (women and men) at Beijing 2008.

South Korea will in China to participate in the Olympics. It competed in the Olympic Football Tournament 7 times.

Nigeria is one of the favourites to win the men’s Olympic Soccer tournament. The national team won the gold medal at the Centennial Olympic Games in Atlanta, USA. Nigeria defeated Argentina 3-2 and won the Olympic title for the first time. This African country received an invitation to play in the Olympics in 1980 in Moscow (USSR/ currently Russia). Sunnie Ephraim (journalist from Lagos) says: «Qualifying for the Games is one thing; doing well and winning the gold medal as seen in Atlanta, United States 11 years ago is different ball game altogether.

Argentina is one of the hot favorites for the Olympic title. Why? This Latin American country won the FIFA U-20 World Cup in 2007(for the second time in a row). Argentina also won the gold medal at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens (Greece). Final standings: 1.Argentina, 2.Paraguay, 3.Italy, 4.Iraq, 5.Mali, 6.South Korea, 7.Australia, 8.Costa Rica. The Argentine team won four matches in the group «C» (Serbia-Montenegro 6-0, Tunisia 2-0, Australia 1-0). In the quarterfinals, Argentina defeating Costa Rica 4-0. In the semifinals, Argentina beat Italy 3-0 and went on to win the final against Paraguay 1-0. The Olympic champions were Mariano Gonzales, Luciano Figueroa, Javier Saviola, German Lux, Wilfredo Caballero, Roberto Ayala, Fabricio Coloccini, Gabriel Heinze, Clemente Rodríguez, Leandro Fernandez, Javier Mascherano, Cristian Gonzalez, Nicolas Medina, Cesar Delgado, Carlos Tevez, Mauro Rosales.

Soccer/ football was first featured at the 1900 Olympic Games.There were nine different champions in the last nine Olympic Games: Poland (Munich 1972), East Germany (Montreal 1976), Czechoslovakia (Moscow 1980), France (Los Angeles 1984), USSR (Seoul 1988), Spain (Barcelona 1992), Nigeria (Atlanta 1996) and Argentina (Athens 2004).

The 1976 Olympic Soccer Tournament were attended by 13 nations: North Korea, Iran, Cuba, Guatemala, Israel, France, Mexico, Canada, Spain, Brazil, USSR/ Soviet Union, Poland and East Germany. Surprisingly, Uruguay -it was replaced by Cuba- did not participate in the 1976 Montreal Olympics. Zambia, Nigeria and Nigeria had withdrawn from the Olympics, due to participation of New Zealand.

In the Beijing 2008 Olympic Football Tournament 16 men’s teams will compete in four groups:

Group «A»: Argentina (South America/ winner of the previous edition), Cote d’Ivoire (Africa), Australia (Oceania), Serbia (Europe).

Group «B»: Holland (Europe), Nigeria (Africa), Japan (Asia), USA.

Group «C»: China (host country), New Zealand (Oceania), Brazil (South America), Belgium (Europe).

Group «D»: South Korea (Asia), Cameroon (Africa), Honduras (Central America), Italy (Europe).

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Cristiano Ronaldo Vs Lionel Messi

Arguably two of the best footballers of the current decade, both are, at glance, very similar players. They’re both attackers, great with a ball, and both play for a Spanish club. However there can only be one winner, so here’s the comparison: Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo.

Lionel Messi

Lionel is only 24 years old and currently plays for fc Barcelona. Born in Rosario, Messi started playing football at the age of 5, under his father’s wings, at a local club. He then rolled into the Barca youth team where he worked his way up from C-B teams to the main squad in rapid pace. His debut in the highest class of football began at the age of 16, during a friendly against FC Porto.

Now in 2011 it’s time to analyse his style of play and it becomes crystal clear that he’s a master with the ball. Thanks to his short length and fast legs, any opponent will have a hard time keeping up with him. However unlike most magicians, he’s also a terrific team player.

Cristiano Ronaldo

Cristiano is 26 years old and is a Real Madrid player. Ronaldo started his career at Sporting (2002) and in 2003 he guided his team to a win against the big Manchester United. The players of Man U knew that they would rather play with him than against him, so they contracted Ronaldo for the start of the 2003 season. After countless of successes, he became the most expensive player ever when he transferred to Real Madrid in June of 2009, the price: 94 million euro.

Ronaldo is a very fast and strong player. He took sprint lessons from the Olympics champion and is clearly a player «from the streets», pulling more tricks with a ball than any party clown could ever aim for. This quality is further emphasised by a great shooting technique that makes him an excellent asset during set pieces.

Versus

Now it’s time to compare the two players and pinpoint a winner, in my respectful opinion. First it’s clear that both players are terrific assets to any team, and both share a lot of qualities. For one they can both outplay several opponents and make a difference when the opposition is tight.

However a winner has to be chosen and in my opinion that winner is Cristiano Ronaldo. At this point Messi might have the edge on the field, but Ronaldo has great free kicks and is clearly stronger physically. The trade off being that Messi is the better team player. I remember Ronaldo when he played for Manchester United and back then he was, without a doubt, the best player in the world. His way of attacking suited the wing-play of Manchester United perfectly, and while less obvious in Madrid’s style of play, his past years are to be considered. Also in Ronaldo’s favour is his great charisma off the pitch. Messi is a pure footballer and doesn’t have that same level of personality away from the field, something past greats (Cruijff, Maradona) did have.

And that’s it for this comparison. Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi share a lot of qualities; especially the ball technique of both is ground breaking. And while Messi currently has the edge, in my opinion Ronaldo is the more complete footballer in the long haul, not partly thanks to his great charisma both on and off the pitch. However they’re both very young so in the coming years this slight favour can definitely swing both ways.

Ronaldo vs Messi

Las Camisetas de fútbol de adidas se encuentran entre las preferidas de muchos equipos. Descubre por qué visitando nuestra colección en la web. by Robin Chung

Congratulations to #astonvilla on picking up their 1st Premier League win and br…

Congratulations to #astonvilla on picking up their 1st Premier League win and breaking their 15 game winless stream. No words for #Everton lol
Link in the bio

#manchestercity #Liverpool #manunited #tottenhamhotspur #everton #newcastle #burnley #bournemouth #chelsea #astonvilla #wolverhampton #wolves #leicestercity #southampton #crystalpalace #arsenal #watford #sheffieldunited #norwich #englishpremierleague #epl #mancity #lfc

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David Beckham

David Beckham, born David Robert Joseph Beckham, was born on May 2, 1975, in Leytonstone, London, England. His parents were Ted Beckham, a kitchen fitter, and Sandra West, a hairdresser. His parents, big fans of Manchester United, reputably the most popular football team in the world, may have had quite a bit of influence on the talented man during his early years.

He attended Bobby Charlton's football school in Manchester, where he won a spot in a training session at FC Barcelona when he was a boy. At the age of 11, he was Manchester United's mascot for a match against West Ham United. He was captain of the English national team from 2000 to 2006, and he played midfield for clubs in Manchester, England, and Madrid. Last year, he began to play for the Los Angeles Galaxy team, which began July 1 and is expected to last for five years.

While he was with Manchester United, he helped them win the Premier League. He is married to Victoria Beckham, better known as Posh Spice (of the group, the Spice Girls), with whom he has had three sons: Brooklyn Joseph (named after the city where Victoria found out she was pregnant with him), who was born in 1999, Romeo James, who was born in 2002, and Cruz David (who was named in honor of the family friend, Tom Cruise), who was born in 2005.

David Beckham is not just a prestigious football player; his name is also an elite advertising brand known all over the world. Though his resume is not as long or as star-studded as some other famous football players, he is still one of the most popular in the world today.

As can be seen in any iconic athlete, David Beckham is a prime example of a role model for teenagers and young football players all over the world. Let's hope he can live up to those standards.

Camisetas de fútbol , NBA y NFL baratas de la mejor calidad y de los mejores equipos y selecciones del mundo de Hombre,Mujer y Niños. by James Griffiths