Anyone else believe the bicycle kick goal is slightly overrated?

6 Comments

A spectacular bicycle kick goal is absolutely a wonder, not just for technical merit, athleticism and novelty, but for the sheer audacity of trying such a thing.

But there are “bikes” that lean closer to the ordinary than the “spectacular.” I sometimes think we get a little carried away with these.

Last week in Major League Soccer, two goals came via the bicycle kick. And they were both nice goals. Look first at Erick Torres’ swell effort for Chivas USA.

.

.

Again, nice goal by young Senor Cubo. But I sometimes think that when any professional soccer player turns his back and leaves his feet, we are all go wake the kids and automatically tag the effort under “Potential goal of the year.” Frankly, not all of them are.

Here, Torres’ shot is a good one. But look at the abysmal defending, which reduces his uncontested effort to something of a training ground exercise. And while I applaud the desire to get something on goal, it would take some convincing to persuade me Torres meant to drop this ball, just so, over the goalkeeper’s right shoulder.

It was a nice goal – I’m just not sure it was even the weekend’s best or even second-best strike.

Watch Javier Morales’ overhead kick in Real Salt Lake’s big win over Portland. Like Torres, he’s unmarked. And in this case, it’s really just a falling down shot out of necessity, as the first ball comes in too hot to manage a more polished first touch.

It’s athletic, sure. The awareness and quick wit around this one deserves applause. Besides, a goal is a goal is a goal. But was it really a Goal of the Year candidate? Hmmm. You tell me:

.

.

Again, nice goal. But it wasn’t exactly Wayne Rooney rising majestically and striking a sidewinder with wicked authority, as he did in the Premier League goal of the year from a few months back, now was it? Watch how he picks a centering ball cleanly out of the air. Now that is a spectacular bicycle kick goal.

Back to MLS and the top goals last week: For me, Eddie Johnson wonderfully placed header (the game-winner against Columbus) was as good or better in MLS Round 27 as the two overhead shots. But give me Benny Feilhaber’s marvelously crafted, bending ball against Colorado as the weekend’s top goal.

It wasn’t an overhead kick, a bicycle kick, a scissors kick or anything else you might call one of those. But it was a peach of a shot, eh?

.

VIDEO: Top Premier League goals – Week 6

Leave a comment

From Fabian Delph‘s curler to Alvaro Morata’s surging run and dink and from Philippe Coutinho‘s perfect free kick to Leroy Sane’s delicate touches.

Boy, did we have some fine strikes in the Premier League in Week 6.

[ LIVE: Stream every Premier League game

Click play on the video above to see the best of the bunch and let us know your favorite in the comments section below.

“What is your favorite?” I hear you cry. Settle down, settle down. I love a good curler which clips off the bar and in so I’m going with Delphy’s goal against Crystal Palace. Sublime.

PHOTO: New USMNT jersey for 2018 World Cup leaked?

Getty Images
1 Comment

Now, of course, they have to qualify first.

But if Bruce Arena’s men do make the 2018 World Cup in Russia they could be wearing this beauty in the photo below.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights

With all leaked jerseys there is a real possibility it could turn out to look completely different but information from Conrad Burry of Sportslogos over the weekend suggested something along these lines.

Take a look at the photo below of the home jersey (the away jersey is said to be “Midnight Navy with a second color of Blue Nebula”) and let us know what you think.

Champions League score picks – Week 2

Getty Images
Leave a comment

The UEFA Champions League group stage kicks off Week 2 on Tuesday, so let’s have some fun and try to predict the scores.

[ MORE: Champions League schedule ]

Feel free to join in down in the comments section, as I’m predicting another unbeaten week for all five Premier League teams in action.

[ MORE: Group stage predictions ] 

Below you will find score predictions for all 16 UCL games across the next two days.


Tuesday

Group E
Sevilla 3-1 Maribor
Spartak Moscow 1-1 Liverpool

Group F
Man City 3-0 Shakhtar Donetsk
Napoli 3-1 Feyenoord

Group G
Besiktas 0-2 RB Leipzig
Monaco 2-1 FC Porto

Group H
Borussia Dortmund 1-3 Real Madrid
APOEL 0-3 Tottenham Hotspur

Wednesday

Group A
CSKA Moscow 1-2 Manchester United
Basel 0-2 Benfica

Group B
Paris Saint-Germain 2-2 Bayern Munich
Anderlecht 2-1 Celtic

Group C
Atletico Madrid 1-2 Chelsea
Qarabag 1-3 Roma

Group D
Sporting Lisbon 1-3 Barcelona
Juventus 2-1 Olympiacos

Court hearing opens into spectators attacking referees

Getty Images
Leave a comment

MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay (AP) Witnesses in Uruguay’s capital testified before a judge on Monday about an attack on two referees by spectators at a soccer match.

A male and a female referee were attacked on Saturday during a second division under-19 game between Basanez and Platense.

The next day, the Uruguay Football Association cancelled all organized football as referees protested the violence by refusing to officiate. Officials are expected to meet on Wednesday to decide if they will lift the stoppage.

Witnesses told Judge Julia Staricco it started after a kid threw rocks on the field with encouragement from his father. The female referee’s partner asked the kid to stop, leading to an argument with other spectators who punched and kicked the referees.

An attorney representing the country’s referees union, Fernando de Los Santos, says the officials suffered bruises to their bodies.

“There are several people responsible here: The players, especially who are all young in the under-19 category; their parents, and their families,” de Los Santos said.

“This is not new. We’ve seen this kind of violence in the lower divisions. But this is the straw that broke the camel’s back.”

The Basanez and Platense clubs have issued statements condemning the violence. Basanez also said it fired one of its players who was part of the attack.

The case is being handled by the same local judge who recently charged three people for violent acts during the Penarol-Nacional derby.