Radamel Falcao Garcia

Falcao’s recovery should not be rushed due to the World Cup

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In January, Monaco forward Radamel Falcao went down injured after a heavy tackle during his side’s 3-0 win over Chasselay Monts d’or Azergues in the French Cup. Shortly thereafter, it was reported that the 27-year-old had torn his ACL and would have to undergo surgery. With a recovery time after ACL injury ranging from six to nine months, it looked almost certain that the Colombian would miss out on a trip to the 2014 World Cup.

After Falcao’s operation, however, his surgeon, Jose Carlos Noronha, stated that he believed the forward would be back much sooner than that. But is rushing the return of Colombia’s star striker really such a great idea? In a word, no.

It is selfish for anyone (be it a surgeon, a fan, let alone an entire nation) to put so much pressure on a single player that suffered a devastating injury, no matter how good he might be. Yes, he might play in the World Cup, but even if he does his role would probably be limited and not as impactful as it otherwise might be if he was fully healthy.

Roberto Baggio, Italy’s version of Falcao in the 1990s (and then some) should be the Colombian forward’s inspiration and guiding light. Baggio tore his ACL on January 31, 2002 and recovered in just 77 days, a feat made that much more amazing by the fact that he was 35 years old (yes, you read that right) at the time. Ironically, all that effort didn’t mean a fourth World Cup stint for Baggio, who was left off the 23-man roster by Cesare Maldini.

Colombia, and Monaco for that matter, should take no chances following such a major injury. Even with plenty of recovery time, knee injuries have a way of coming back to haunt players. We recently saw Stu Holden, who tore his ACL back in July, pick up yet another serious injury while trying to ease his way back into competition, playing with Bolton’s U21 side. And then there’s Giuseppe Rossi, who notched 14 goals in 18 appearances for Fiorentina this season, only for doctors to find further damage to his ACL in January.

Yes, Colombia were pegged as dark horses for the World Cup, mostly due to Falcao’s performances up top. But to rush him back to fitness in time for the tournament may compromise his long-term abilities. At his age, Falcao has at least four or five good years left in him. But a botched recovery could very well mean the end of his career instead.

For more on why Falcao shouldn’t be rushed to recovery, visit Soccerly.

VIDEO: Gary Cahill scores shocking own goal to give Man City lead

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Gary Cahill, sort your feet out.

As Jesus Navas’ right wing cross came into the box, Chelsea’s captain for the day got his feet all wrong. Instead of clearing the ball with his left foot, he took a swipe at a clearance with his right and the ball hooked off his right and into the far corner of his net.

1-0 to Manchester City right on half time.

A nightmare end to a promising first half for Chelsea, and for Cahill…

Click play on the video above to see the horror own goal go in.

Watch Live: Manchester City vs. Chelsea (Lineups, Live Stream)

LEICESTER, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 20:  Cesc Fabregas of Chelsea celebrates victory after the EFL Cup Third Round match between Leicester City and Chelsea at The King Power Stadium on September 20, 2016 in Leicester, England.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
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Manchester City welcome Chelsea to the Etihad Stadium on Saturday (Watch live, 7:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com) as two Premier League title contenders collide.

On the sidelines Pep Guardiola and Antonio Conte lock horns for the first time in England and in fact, the first-ever time as opposition managers as two of the great minds in the game today.

WATCH LIVE ONLINE HERE

On the pitch Diego Costa and Sergio Aguero are joint-top goalscorers in the PL and it should be an intriguing tactical battle with Conte playing a 3-4-3 and Guardiola able to mix-and-match his formations and a gesture or whistle.

It is still early days in both of their projects but plenty of promising signs have already emerged with Chelsea currently on a seven-game winning streak which sees them sit to of the table, while Man City sit one point behind them in third place.

In team news for this clash, Guardiola starts with a very attacking lineup and three men in defense.

Chelsea bring in Cesc Fabregas for Nemanja Matic in central midfield in their only change to the lineup for their last seven games. Fabregas last played in September in the defeat at Arsenal.

LINEUPS

Manchester City: Bravo; Otamendi, Stones, Kolarov; Fernandinho, Gundogan, Navas, Sane; De Bruyne, Silva, Aguero. Subs: Caballero, Sagna, Zabaleta, Clichy, Fernando, Toure, Iheanacho

Chelsea: Courtois; Azpilicueta, David Luiz, Cahill; Moses, Kante, Fabregas, Alonso; Pedro, Diego Costa, Hazard. Subs: Begovic, Ivanovic, Aina, Chalobah, Oscar, Willian, Batshuayi

Peru extradites ex-soccer boss to US on bribery charges

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND - OCTOBER 13: A FIFA logo next to the entrance during part I of the FIFA Council Meeting 2016 at the FIFA headquarters on October 13, 2016 in Zurich, Switzerland. (Photo by Philipp Schmidli/Getty Images)
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LIMA, Peru (AP) Peru has extradited the country’s former soccer boss to the United States for his alleged involvement in a multibillion-dollar FIFA bribery scandal involving marketing and broadcasting rights.

Manuel Burga was sent to New York on a commercial flight before dawn on Friday.

He has been in jail since December 2015 as part of the investigation. Peru’s Supreme Court in June cleared the way for his extradition and President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski signed a decree authorizing the move a week ago.

Burga oversaw Peru’s football federation for more than a decade until 2014. He has denied any wrongdoing.

San Jose Earthquakes release Clarence Goodson, eight others

San Jose Earthquakes forward Quincy Amarikwa (25) is mobbed by teammates after scoring against the Portland Timbers during the first half of an MLS soccer match Sunday, March 13, 2016, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez
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While the battle for MLS Cup 2016 has been dwindled down to two sides, the rest of the league continues to make roster transactions in preparation for next season.

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The San Jose Earthquakes announced on Friday that the club has exercised options on six players, including goalkeeper David Bingham, Fatai Alashe, Kip Colvey and Victor Bernardez.

Additionally, the Earthquakes have released nine players, including U.S. Men’s National Team defender Clarence Goodson, Marc Pelosi and Tommy Thompson, however, the latter two are reportedly in talks to return to the club in 2017.