TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say West Ham boss Pellegrini won’t rule out move for Medelby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveWest Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini refused to rule out a January move for Besiktas midfielder Gary Medel yesterday.Medel, formerly of Cardiff City, is being linked with the Hammers.And Pellegrini stated: “Those names are among 25 over the last few weeks.“We are happy with the squad we know we need to replace players that won’t play more this season – Carlos Sanchez, Yarmolenko. “I will not talk about individual players now.“
Cannavaro backing Napoli to win Europa Leagueby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveBallon d’Or winner Fabio Cannavaro is backing Napoli to win the Europa League.The former centre-back lifted the trophy with Parma in 1999.“I was the last to win what was still the UEFA Cup in 1999,” Cannavaro told Il Mattino.“I was at Parma, and at that time we dominated the UEFA Cup like the Spaniards do now. I don’t know why, over time, Italian teams have snubbed this competition, although it’s certainly tiring.“Winning it brings great joy though, and Napoli have all the means to do that.” About the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your say
About the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say Man Utd midfielder Herrera: Solskjaer game plan led to Spurs victoryby Freddie Taylor9 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveAnder Herrera believes that it was the manager’s game plan that helped them beat Tottenham.United managed an impressive 1-0 win at Wembley, their first away win over Spurs in the league since 2012.And Herrera credited interim boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and the coaching staff for preparing the players in the best possible way.”The manager told us that at the beginning of the game it would be difficult to make short passes,” Herrera explained to the United website after the game. “He told us that it would be easier for us to switch the play and to look – almost without looking – to the other side of the pitch to switch the ball, because that is where we were going to find spaces.”We scored like that, so thank you to the game plan as well.”
TagsPremiership NewsAbout the authorIan FerrisShare the loveHave your say Monster energy deals for Premiership clubsby Ian Ferrisa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveGlobal drinks giant Monster Energy has made its first major move into the Premier League through sponsorship deals with a swathe of top flight clubs, reports, www.sportspromedia.com/.Monster has so far been confirmed as the official energy drinks partner of Brighton, Crystal Palace, Everton, Leicester City, Southampton and West Ham United.Further partnerships with Tottenham Hotspur and Watford are yet to be announced, although both clubs are already displaying the Monster Energy logo on their official websites alongside their other official partners.
247 Sports Team RankingsIf you follow recruiting, or college football in general, you’re probably somewhat aware of the momentum Michigan State’s program has. Spartans’ quarterback Damion Terry probably summed it up best on Twitter this afternoon after his team landed another four-star recruit. Feels like every time I refresh my Twitter we get a new big time recruit#SpartanDawgs— Damion Terry (@DamionTerry) June 7, 2015He’s not wrong. Michigan State’s 2016 is shaping up to be really, really good.How good, exactly? The best-class-the-Spartans-have-had-in-the-21st-century good. On 247 Sports’ Team Rankings, Michigan State’s class is currently ranked No. 7 in the country. The Spartans’ previous best class of the 21st century was their 2000 class, which was ranked No. 8 in the country. 2000. 2016. Mark Dantonio with elite recruits is a scary thought for the rest of the country.
CFB Betting LinesIf you’re a gambling man (or woman), you can now bet on college football’s (basically) full slate of 2015 games. Who’s favored in the first Harbaugh-Meyer game? The Las Vegas sportsbook, Golden Nugget, has released its lines for its “games of the year,” which are nearly all of the notable games that will occur each week. The casino will take a max bet of $1,000 on the games. Here they are: Thursday, Sept. 3Michigan at Utah -4TCU -18 at MinnesotaFriday, Sept. 4Washington at Boise State -13Saturday, Sept. 5Wisconsin vs. Alabama -10 (Arlington, Texas)Louisville vs. Auburn -11.5 (Atlanta, Ga.)Arizona State vs. Texas A&M -3 (Houston)Texas at Notre Dame -7.5Virginia at UCLA -17BYU at Nebraska -6Monday, Sept. 7Ohio State -16 at Virginia TechSaturday, Sept. 12LSU -3 at Mississippi StateUCLA -32 at UNLVOklahoma at Tennessee -3Notre Dame -9 at VirginiaOregon State at Michigan -14Iowa -4.5 at Iowa StateMarshall -3.5 at Ohio UniversityBoise State -6 at BYUOregon at Michigan State -1Thursday, Sept. 17Clemson -3 at LouisvilleSaturday, Sept. 19Auburn at LSU -4UNLV at Michigan -33Ole Miss at Alabama -9.5South Carolina at Georgia -11Georgia Tech at Notre Dame -2Nebraska at Miami, Fla. PKStanford at USC -4BYU at UCLA -14Colorado -1.5 vs. Colorado State (Denver)Thursday, Sept. 24Cincinnati at Memphis -2Friday, Sept. 25Boise State -9 at VirginiaSaturday, Sept. 26LSU -20 at SyracuseUCLA at Arizona PKUSC -1 at ArizonaUtah at Oregon -14Oklahoma State at Texas -2.5BYU at Michigan -7Texas A&M vs. Arkansas -6.5 (Arlington, Texas)Mississippi State at Auburn -8Tennessee -2.5 at FloridaThursday, Oct. 1Miami, Fla. at Cincinnati -2.5Saturday, Oct. 3UNLV at Nevada -14Ole Miss -6 at FloridaAlabama at Georgia PKSouth Carolina at Missouri -11Arkansas at Tennessee -1Mississippi State at Texas A&M -6.5Pittsburgh at Virginia Tech -9Arizona at Stanford -7.5Arizona State at UCLA -6Oregon -16 at ColoradoArmy at Penn State -28West Virginia at Oklahoma -10Kansas State at Oklahoma State -4Texas at TCU -21Notre Dame at Clemson -3.5Thursday, Oct. 8Washington at Southern Cal -19Saturday, Oct. 10LSU -8 at South CarolinaGeorgia Tech at Clemson -3Arkansas at Alabama -7.5Florida at Missouri -10Georgia at Tennessee PKMiami (FL) at Florida State -14.5Virginia at Pittsburgh -6Boise State -12 at Colorado StateTCU -11 at Kansas StateOklahoma -6.5 vs. Texas (Dallas, Texas)Oklahoma State at West Virginia -5Wisconsin -1 at NebraskaNavy at Notre Dame -14Thursday, Oct. 15UCLA at Stanford -4.5Auburn -9 at KentuckyFriday, Oct. 16UNLV at Fresno State -12Boise State -9.5 at Utah StateSaturday, Oct. 17Florida at LSU -14Arizona State at Utah -2USC at Notre Dame PKOregon -15 at WashingtonLouisville at Florida State -12Pittsburgh at Georgia Tech -14Virginia Tech at Miami, Fla. -6Missouri at Georgia -8.5Alabama -7 at Texas A&MWest Virginia at Baylor -17TCU -29 at Iowa StateOklahoma -3 at Kansas StateMichigan State -4.5 at MichiganPenn State at Ohio State -19Saturday, Oct. 24Utah at USC -7Kansas State at Texas -2Tennessee at Alabama -10Auburn at Arkansas -6.5Texas A&M at Ole Miss -4Clemson -4.5 at Miami, Fla.Florida State at Georgia Tech PKThursday, Oct. 29Oregon -5 at Arizona StateWest Virginia at TCU -20Saturday, Oct. 31Boise State -28.5 at UNLVCentral Florida at Cincinnati -6Georgia Tech -10 at VirginiaOle Miss at Auburn -4Florida vs. Georgia -12 (Jacksonville, Fla.)South Carolina at Texas A&M -10Oregon State at Utah -16Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2015Northern Illinois at Toledo -3Thursday, Nov. 5Mississippi State at Missouri, -6Baylor -12 at Kansas StateSaturday, Nov. 7LSU at Alabama -9Arkansas at Ole Miss -1Auburn -1.5 at Texas A&MTCU -11 at Oklahoma StateMichigan State -6 at NebraskaFlorida State at Clemson -2Virginia at Miami, Fla. -6.5Notre Dame -3 at PittsburghArizona at USC -7.5Thursday, Nov. 12Virginia Tech at Georgia Tech -9.5Friday, Nov. 13USC -12 at ColoradoSaturday, Nov. 14Arkansas at LSU -1.5Utah at Arizona -3Oregon at Stanford PKAlabama -9 at Mississippi StateFlorida at South Carolina -2.5Oklahoma at Baylor -13BYU at Missouri -12Saturday, Nov. 21San Diego State -16 at UNLVLSU at Ole Miss PKFresno State at BYU -18TCU -5 at OklahomaBaylor -10 at Oklahoma StateMichigan State at Ohio State -14Michigan at Penn State -4.5Mississippi State at Arkansas -10Tennessee at Missouri -2.5Georgia Tech -6 at Miami, Fla.Arizona at Arizona State -3UCLA -1 at UtahCalifornia at Stanford -13Friday, Nov. 27Baylor at TCU -6Oregon State at Oregon -22.5Washington State at Washington -4.5Iowa at Nebraska -7Texas A&M at LSU -7.5Kansas State -24 at KansasOklahoma -3 at Oklahoma StateBYU at Utah State PKOhio State -16 at MichiganPenn State at Michigan State -12UCLA at USC -3Colorado at Utah -13.5Notre Dame at Stanford -3North Carolina at NC State -6Virginia Tech -4 at VirginiaMissouri at Arkansas -7Alabama -3.5 at AuburnFlorida State -4 at FloridaGeorgia -1 at Georgia TechLouisville -2.5 at KentuckyOle Miss -2 at MississippiClemson -3 at South CarolinaVanderbilt at Tennessee -17Saturday, Dec. 5Texas at Baylor -18West Virginia at Kansas State -5Saturday, Dec. 12Navy -13 vs. Army, Philadelphia, Pa.
Earlier today, a Monroe, La., district attorney elected not to pursue charges against Alabama football players Cam Robinson and Hootie Jones due to insufficient evidence. When explaining his decision, the DA said he “refused to ruin the lives of two young men who have spent their adolescence and teenage years, working and sweating, while we were all in the air conditioning.”This apparently didn’t sit well with Fox Sports’ Clay Travis, who wrote a column lambasting the decision and insinuating that athletes don’t work that hard.“This is one of the most absurd clichés that has taken root in sporting life,” Travis wrote. “Athletes, at most, train 3-4 hours a day. Every doctor, lawyer, investment banker, accountant, teacher and fast food worker in the country works harder than an athlete does. In fact, there are no jobs in America that pay more for less work than athletics.”Two current Alabama players, quarterback Blake Barnett and defensive end Mekhi Brown, proceeded to blast Travis’ column on Twitter.Sounds like something an unathletic person would say. “Ignorance is bliss.” pic.twitter.com/phuc1teBwp— B² (@Blake8Barnett) June 20, 2016Great point. Funny how there’s a misconception about the work athletes put in. College athletes have 12+ hour days. https://t.co/78tZtVE86z— B² (@Blake8Barnett) June 20, 2016Put them in our shoes and they’ll quit lol. There is a reason why jobs prefer former athletes over the reg students https://t.co/HBrLgYG9PE— Khi (@MekhiBrownn) June 20, 2016Not to be outdone, Travis replied to Barnett’s tweet.Bama QB thinks athletes work hard compared to doctors, lawyers and investment bankers. So wrong. https://t.co/vkDvefxSU0— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) June 20, 2016Barnett wasn’t finished though, and dropped a comeback to Travis’ response. @ClayTravis Sounds like you have the personal experience of being an athlete, doctor, lawyer, and investment banker.— B² (@Blake8Barnett) June 20, [email protected] You’re comparing something where there is no need for comparison. No need to dig through things to cause controversy.— B² (@Blake8Barnett) June 20, 2016The back-and-forth ended at that. We’re going to guess that Barnett and Brown’s tweets at Travis were very tame and composed compared to what some fans may have sent him. [AL.com]
Diving. Players do it, managers have a moan over it, and some critics have accused divers of ‘ruining’ the modern game and football itself.But what is diving, and why do footballers feel the need to do so? The act of diving has, over the years, been perfected into an art by some players, with some mastering the craft of going to the ground with just the perfect amount of weight and theatrics.It is a fine line, however: other players, including some of football’s elite, have become notorious for throwing themselves to the floor in a bid to hoodwink match officials into awarding decisions in their favour. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Goal takes a look at players who have a tendency to dive, what the punishments are for diving, as well as how to recognise a ‘simulation’ and more.What is a dive? A ‘dive’ is the term used for when a player attempts to gain an unfair advantage on the opposition team through falling to the ground easily and feigning injury, giving the impression to the referee that a foul has been committed.Deciding whether or not to award marginal fouls, especially when they occur inside the penalty area, has long been one of the most controversial elements of football and a regular talking point after games.Referees are forced to decide in the blink of an eye between giving the fallen player the benefit of the doubt by awarding the penalty or ultimately seeing what was a fake attempt at trying to gain an advantage for their team.Players generally dive in order to receive free-kicks or penalties or to earn opposing players yellow or red cards.High-pressure and intense games where the scoreline is either even or tight may see more players go to ground more easily in order to gain an edge for their side.Diving has been formally termed ‘simulation’ by FIFA.Which players are known for diving? Brazil forward Neymar has picked up infamy for his diving theatrics across the World Cup 2018 in Russia, whose numerous tumbles spread across social media like wildfire, inspiring memes and mockery.After Mexico lost to Brazil in the World Cup group stages, El Tri coach Juan Carlos Osorio berated the antics of the PSG star as the reason for his team’s defeat.Late on in the second half, Neymar was found writhing on the ground for nearly two whole minutes after Mexico’s Miguel Layun trod on his ankle.“This is a real shame for football,” Osorio said at the time. “We wasted a lot of time because of one single player.”Interestingly enough, however, despite some players obviously taking the opportunity to dive as a means to gain an advantage for their team when the score is unfavourable to them, the Wall Street Journal analysed the Brazil international’s diving patterns during the 2018 World Cup and concluded that his tumbles come more frequently when his side are winning.Roughly 60 per cent of Neymar’s falls come with the scoreline level, but the research showed that he actually goes to ground more when his team is winning – averaging 15 seconds on the ground when his team in front against only nine when the game is tied.Additionally, Brazil’s games had been tied for longer than when they had led – so Neymar flops more often when his team are in front, approximately once every eight and a half minutes, compared to once every nine and a half minutes when the game is tied.Tottenham’s Dele Alli has also gained a notorious reputation for diving, earning the dubious distinction of being booked for simulation twice in one season when Spurs played out a 2-2 draw at Anfield in February 2018.Manager Mauricio Pochettino had no excuses for the England international, but also lamented that too much discussion around driving will distort the game in the future.“It was a yellow card,” Pochettino told reporters. “It happens. During different games, a lot of situations like this happen. The problem now is we are so sensitive about the situation. And then we are so focused on Dele Alli. The referee was right and perfect. It was a yellow card and nothing [else]. It’s too much sometimes. There is such a focus on this type of situation. I think it’s a minimal issue.“Dele is not perfect. Nobody is perfect. He is a clever boy. He is a little bit nasty. Football is a creative sport in which you need the talent that grows in a very intelligent person, a very smart brain. But the problem today is that, more than this type of situation, I am worried we are going to change the game we know.”Former Liverpool and current Barcelona striker Luis Suarez also has a reputation for going to ground too easily, as do the likes of Gareth Bale, Sergio Busquets, Didier Drogba, Ashley Young and Radamel Falcao.What technique goes into a dive? Usually, certain dives are fairly obvious to identify – such as when the player goes to ground in too dramatic a manner, almost after a short lapse in time following initial contact with the opposition team player.Certain players such as Neymar and Suarez are also overtly theatrical with their dives, and are often victims of ‘contact consistency’ – nursing a body part other than when the impact occurred, such as when a challenge to the chest causes the player to fly to the ground or hold their face.The ‘archer’s bow’ pose is the biggest giveaway used to identify a diving player, which has them set in a position with their head tilted back, chest thrust forward, both arms raised and legs bent at the knee to lift both feet of the ground to the rear. According to the Telegraph, such motion is counter to the normal reflex mechanisms used to protect the body in the event of a natural fall.Dr Paul Morris explained: “In most dishonest tackles the behaviour itself does not indicate dishonesty, the deception is revealed in the timing and co-ordination of the behaviours.”But one action is unique to a faked fall – the archer’s bow.”This occurs in many dives but biomechanically it does not occur in a natural fall.”What are the punishments for diving? The FA’s rules state that attempts to deceive the referee through feigning injury or pretending to have been fouled through simulation must be sanctioned as unsporting behaviour, and punishable by a yellow card.In November 2017, Everton player Oumar Niasse became the first player to be banned by the FA for diving, receiving a two-match ban for the offence in a match against Crystal Palace.Most recently, Spurs hotshot Harry Kane was given a yellow for going to the ground in December 2018 in a home game against Wolves in the Premier League.Of course, one of the most tangible punishments for diving do not come through cards, but through the way the reputation of the diving player is affected.Referees tend to have limited patience for those who are seen as prone to go to ground more easily, as opposed to those players who rarely make a meal out of a challenge.And so, similar in a ‘Boy Who Cried Wolf’ scenario, in the event that a player subsequently does merit the awarding of a penalty after being legitimately fouled inside the box, the referee may decide to simply turn a blind eye. Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.
FC Cincinnati’s quest for a defensive midfield anchor has led the Major League Soccer expansion club to a European-based American who is ready to return home.FC Cincinnati is finalizing the acquisition of midfielder Caleb Stanko, multiple sources have confirmed to Goal. The defensive midfielder is joining Cincinnati from Bundesliga side SC Freiburg for an undisclosed fee after Cincinnati claimed Stanko via the MLS discovery process.Stanko will look to lock down the defensive midfield role Cincinnati had originally hoped to fill with veteran midfielder Osvaldo Alonso, who wound up signing a free agent contract with Minnesota United instead. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? The 25-year-old has one cap with the U.S. senior national team, a 17-minute cameo in a World Cup qualifying victory against Trinidad and Tobago in 2016.Stanko joined Freiburg in 2011, spending six seasons with the club’s reserve team before making his first-team debut in 2015 when Freiburg was playing in the 2.Bundesliga. After a successful loan stint with Swiss club FC Vaduz during the 2016-17 season, Stanko returned to newly-promoted Freiburg and made six appearances with the Bundesliga club during the 2017-18 season.Knee injuries cut short Stanko’s 2017-18 season and also kept him sidelined for the first half of the current Bundesliga campaign. He has recovered from his most recent knee injury, and played 90 minutes in a friendly against Mainz on January 12.Stanko joins an FC Cincinnati side that acquired veteran defensive midfielder Victor Ulloa from FC Dallas earlier this month, and also brought in MLS veteran Fatai Alashe from San Jose last season. Recent Costa Rican signing Allan Cruz is another possibility for the defensive midfield role, but Stanko’s arrival could allow FC Cincinnati coach Alan Koch to deploy Cruz in a more advanced role or partner Stanko and Cruz as dueling defensive midfielders in a 4-2-3-1 system.Stanko joins a solid defensive core FC Cincinnati has put together, which also includes MLS veterans Greg Garza, Kendall Waston and Alvas Powell, along with promising young central defender Hassan Ndam.The 25-year-old captained the United States at the 2013 Under-20 World Cup, leading a squad that included DeAndre Yedlin, Wil Trapp, Zack Steffen and Kellyn Acosta.
FOX Sports 1 is televising tonight’s UCLA-Fresno State game in Los Angeles. The Bruins are currently losing to the Bulldogs, 16-7. This would be UCLA’s third straight loss to open the Chip Kelly era.So, it would be an understatement to say that UCLA is having a bad night.So, too, are FOX Sports 1’s graphics operators.An embarrassing mistake was just made on a graphic for a UCLA player.”Rookie”? ROOKIE?? pic.twitter.com/xLRKgeJpNp— Will Stewart (@WillStewartTSL) September 16, 2018Yeah, “rookies” don’t exist in college football, FOX Sports 1.Lake isn’t even a freshman. He’s a sophomore.FS1 identifies UCLA’s Quentin Lake as a “rookie.” That would be bad enough – except he’s a sophomore https://t.co/gnMX9iWWJ3— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) September 16, 2018UCLA and Fresno State, meanwhile, are halfway through the second quarter.