The Rio Ferdinand/Roy Hodgson ‘back’-and-forth took another fantastic twist yesterday.
As you may well know by now because that’s all we’ve spoken about in the last week, Rio Ferdinand was welcomed ‘back’ into the England squad by Roy Hodgson for ‘football reasons’ only to pull out at the death to look after his chronic ‘back’ problem.
Sounds sensible to me until you hear what Rio’s plans are for the next several days. He’s going to fly to Doha, Qatar to work on a TV broadcast of the San Marino/England match he was meant to play in on Friday.
Yep, the United defender has agreed to provide expert analysis for Al Jazeera even though he’ll have to embark on a 15 hour round trip.
No doubt he’ll be travelling first class but wasn’t the point of him pulling out of the squad to have treatment on his ‘back’. Now having tasted the delight of first class travel myself once on a long haul flight, I can attest to the fact that while roomy, it’s still takes a toll.
This feels like the ultimate snub to Hodgson who ate humble pie to bring Rio ‘back’ into the fold. If I didn’t know better, I’d say that Rio has turned this into a playground spat that makes him come across as childish.
It’s not as though Ferdinand needs the extra money that being a pundit provides so why cause this controversy?
MLS Snapshot: Vancouver 1-1 Houston — Beasley, Rivero trade beauties (video)
The game in 100 words (or less): Vancouver is a long way from Houston. That could’ve been a problem for a Dynamo team that had yet to see a road point through six games. DaMarcus Beasley made sure to put the Dynamo on the front foot with a goal that turned back the hands of time and, after a shoving match between Alex and Pedro Morales left both sides down a man, Octavio Rivero scored an outside of the foot goal to level things up. Russell Teibert was an artistic passing machine for the ‘Caps, and both Tyler Deric and David Ousted made terrific stops as it ended 1-1.
Three moments that mattered
20′ — Beasley scores a beauty — This run, dribble and finish is something this man has done many-a-time in his long and storied career.
The world was treated to the rare sight of a shirtless Cristiano Ronaldo as he celebrated the clinching penalty in a win over Atletico Madrid in the UEFA Champions League final in Milan on Saturday.
Jokes aside, one of the greatest players of his generation did get a moment to remember despite having a rather forgettable 120 minutes beforehand. Ronaldo buried the final penalty to give Real a 5-3 win in kicks after a 1-1 score line post-regulation.
“The penalties are always a lottery, you never know what will happen but our team showed more experience and we showed it by scoring all the penalties. A fantastic night for us.
“It is the end of the season and people are not fit, we have to rest and we have to go for the Euros.”
Then again, when you’re a superstar and have a trio of UCL crowns, you can feel however you like. Ronaldo’s never been a man for John Wooden-style quotes — heck, we’d even take David Beckham’s personality from him — but he’s won it all thrice.
And to be fair, the other two were better games (and performances from him). Ronaldo scored for Manchester United against Chelsea and capped off the scoring in the 2014 Real win over Atleti.