The Europa League final often has subplots aside from the final match score, as do most major European matches.However, the one that came from the stands of yesterday’s match between Sevilla and Benfica is an odd one.
Former Manchester United manager and current board member Sir Alex Ferguson was spotted chatting with Juventus manager Antonio Conte, and the Italian media instantly cooked up a few fresh transfer rumors for us to munch on.
The most notable of these just-add-water rumors is that apparently the two discussed bringing midfield rock Arturo Vidal to Manchester United, for around $55 million.
All things considered, it makes sense in some ways but there are also significant hurdles that would have to be overcome. First, Vidal reportedly rejected a number of high-profile moves as recently as March, with Real Madrid and Barcelona apparently circling.
And if he’s happy enough to stay in Turin despite the best efforts of two of the top teams in the world right now, it would be shocking to see him move to Old Trafford which won’t be seeing any European play at all next season. He also signed a contract extension in December keeping him at Juventus until 2017.
Another possibility raised by the media is the idea of a transfer for midfielder Paul Pogba. United has rued the day they sold the youngster to Juventus, but the player in early May told the public how Ferguson himself failed to give him playing time and therefore resigned himself to a departure.
Something else that many will want to keep in mind are the late-April reports that the United board were looking into Conte as a possible option for long-term manager. However, that also seems a bit farfetched, especially with Louis van Gaal reportedly already in the driver’s seat for the position.
Play until you hear the referee’s whistle. In theory, so simple. In practice, it only takes a single second of concentration lapse to become an internet sensation for all the wrong reasons.
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Such is life for Karyn Forbes, member of the Trinidad and Tobago women’s national soccer team. In the above video, you’ll observe Forbes, a 24-year-old midfielder, giving away perhaps the most bizarre penalty kick you’ll ever see. You’ll have to watch for yourself to believe it.
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Unfortunately for Forbes, though the whole of the ball might have crossed the whole of the end line, the referee did not blow her whistle… not until Forbes picked the ball up with her hands and carried it to her goalkeeper.
BERLIN (AP) The German Football League (DFL) has given the go-ahead for the possible testing of video replays in the Bundesliga over a two-year pilot phase.
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The DFL says it will be lodging an application with FIFA to take part if the pilot phase is approved by the International Football Association Board at its next annual general meeting on March 5.
The DFL says video replays could be used by a “team of impartial match officials for the purpose of avoiding any evidently incorrect decisions” and that the pilot phase would be preceded by “intensive preparations.”
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These would include the settlement of costs among FIFA, the IFAB, the DFL and German football federation, as well as training for the candidates.
West Ham United hope Dimitri Payet is going absolutely nowhere after the club announced on Thursday the 28-year-old Frenchman has signed a contract extension through the summer of 2021.
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Payet’s current contract was scheduled to keep him at the Premier League club through the summer of 2020, but a series of standout performances (6 goals, 4 assists so far this season, mostly during the season’s opening three months) and rumors of interest from “bigger” clubs meant tacking on another year — and plenty more cash — was the best way to keep Payet in east London for the foreseeable future. The club confirmed earlier this week that negotiations over an extension were underway.
“He’s the best player I’ve signed in 25 years,” said West Ham co-owner David Sullivan. “He’s a [$43 million] player. He’s a supreme footballer. He makes every player in our side play better. On his day, he’s world class, he’s unstoppable.”
Payet, who’s been at West Ham just eight months after signing last summer, could still depart in the summer should he finish the current season strong and/or show up and show out at the European Championship, which kicks off in June. In that event, West Ham would now bag a much heftier transfer fee than they would have done prior to the extension.
Remember that Dele Alli goal? No, not that one… that one. Of course you remember it. How could you not?
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How often does a player receive the ball out of the air, flick it over his head, spin 180 degrees and hit an inch-perfect volley from 20 yards out to secure all three points for his team? The answer is, of course, not very often.
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Thus, a goal such as Alli’s stunning winner against Crystal Palace last month has been, and will continue to be, immortalized through numerous recreations in this Digital Age. Above is Alli’s goal recreated in hand-drawn crayon.