Tim Howard and Sylvain Distin are, it seems, massive UFC fans.
“Tim and I have started watching it a lot and are always calling each other up during events or talking about it in the dressing room afterwards,” the Everton defender tells the Mirror.
The pair even do pad work once a week, which, I dunno, seems like it might be a violation of the contractual terms or something. But I guess not.
Anyway, they were pretty excited when two British UFC stars Terry Etim and Andy “The Little Axe” Ogle showed up at the soccer club’s training ground to hang out, take pictures, and chat with the two soccer stars who know their stuff.
“Honestly I was a little surprised that they knew so much about the UFC, but that just shows how much the sport is growing in the UK,” Etim said of the encounter.
The conversation, no doubt influenced by a meddlesome Mirror reporter, turned to the topic of who would win a fight between the goalkeeper and the central defender.
“I tell Sylvain this all the time, he hits these pads but the pads don’t hit back, that part is easy,” Howard told the Mirror. “I mean he’s got a big left hand but if I can slip it he might be in trouble!”
Truth! I suppose.
The whole thing is just very strange, but you should really click through to the Mirror story to see the amazing picture of Howard facing off against Etim.
City Football Group appears on the verge of adding to its global outreach, and it’s next destination looks to be in Spain.
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The group of investors, which are known for controlling Premier League side Manchester City, are reportedly nearing a deal to purchase a partial stake in Spanish club Girona — which is set to make its La Liga debut in 2017/18.
CFG is said to be gaining a near “50 percent” stake in the club, with the rest of the club owned by Media Base, a company owned by Pep Guardiola‘s brother, Pere.
Over recent years, CFG has vastly expanded its ownership outreach and currently has a stake in five clubs around the world, with Girona set to be the sixth.
MLS side New York City FC, Australian A-League side Melbourne City FC, Japan’s Yokohama F. Marinos and Club Atletico Torque in Uruguay are all part of the CFG enterprise, alongside Man City.
The “Iron Man” will keep up his amazing journey with the New York Red Bulls, after signing a new deal with the club on Wednesday.
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Goalkeeper Luis Robles has extended his contract with the reigning Eastern Conference champions, as the American continues to raise his consecutive starts streak, which stands at 157.
The terms of the deal were not disclosed in the club’s release.
Robles joined the Red Bulls back in 2012 after playing in Germany, and the shot-stopper hasn’t missed a start ever since.
Minnesota United has had its shares of ups and down in its debut MLS season, but the Loons are on the verge making an exciting young signing.
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ESPN FC is reporting that Minnesota will sign Hearts winger Sam Nicholson from the Scottish Premier League on a deal that makes him a Loon until 2019.
The young attacker is expected to join the MLS side when the summer transfer window opens on July 10.
Nicholson, 22, has played with the Edinburgh side since his youth days, and made his senior debut with the club in 2013. During his time at Hearts, Nicholson scored 16 goals in all competitions for the team.
Last season, Nicholson missed 16 matches due to a significant knee injury.
According to the report, Scottish sides Rangers and Aberdeen were also among those interested in acquiring Nicholson, while English Championship clubs Bristol City and Barnsley also reached out about the attacker.
Scott Parker has announced his retirement from soccer after a stellar 20-plus year career in England.
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The 36-year-old spent almost the entirety of his career in the Premier League, and played with seven teams during his time on the pitch.
“I believe now is the right time to move on to the next chapter in my life and career,” Parker said in a statement.
“I feel incredibly honoured and proud to have enjoyed the career that I have and I’ve loved every moment of it.”
Parker began playing with Charlton after coming up through the team’s youth academy, before completing a move to Chelsea in 2004.
Throughout his career, Parker also spent time at Newcastle, West Ham and Tottenham, before finishing up at Fulham this past season.