As we continue our countdown to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil here at PST, each day from now until the tournament begins we will look back at a memorable moment from years gone by.
Here is number 16.
PST’s Top 20 World Cup moments – No. 16. Trailing 3-0, Eusebio scores four in wild Portuguese comeback in 1966
Trailing 3-0 to surprise package North Korea at Goodison Park in a World Cup quarterfinal, Portugal knew they needed something pretty special to make it to the final four for the first time during their first-ever appearance in a World Cup finals tournament.
Step forward, Eusébio da Silva Ferreira.
Eusebio, known as ‘The Black Panther’ to the people of Portugal, sprang into action and single-handedly dragged his nation back into the match. 3-0 down after just 25 minutes, Portugal had a mountain to climb but Eusebio scored twice before half time to make it 3-2. He then smashed in an unstoppable shot after the break to make it 3-3 and complete his hat trick in front of a stunned Merseyside crowd.
RELATED: Countdown, World Cup Top 20 moments
The man born in Mozambique wasn’t finished, oh no. Eusebio then showed off his gazelle-like speed by picking the ball up just inside his own half and then running at North Korea’s terrified defense. One scything tackle then came in on Eusebio, who carried on towards goal but he was then taken out by another hefty challenge and the referee pointed to the spot. Remarkably Eusebio was still in one piece as he dusted himself off and slotted in his, and Portugal’s, fourth of the match to put them ahead for the first time.
Portugal added a fifth late on, as they made it through to the semifinals where they lost to eventual champions England 2-1. Eusebio finished as the top scorer in the 1966 tournament with nine goals and he scored 41 goals in 64 appearances for Portugal.
The legendary Benfica forward passed away in 2014 as the soccer community lost a true hero. His legacy lives on throughout the globe and this stunning display back in ’66 remains one of his finest moments.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic has announced his arrival in Major League Soccer in a typically understated fashion…
The big question surrounding Zlatan’s arrival at the LA GAlaxy on a two-year deal is if he can still produce goals on a regular basis following his serious knee injury last year which kept him out for eight months and continued to hamper him this season at Manchester United.
Yet another question is intriguing to many: where does the 36-year-old stack up in terms of the biggest signings in MLS’ 23-year history?
It’s an intriguing question to ponder and despite Zlatan’s status as one of the most recognizable players on the planet, the impact he will have on MLS will be determined on what he produces on the pitch. Some of the other star names who previously arrived haven’t produced star moments, even if they remained stars after their retirement.
With the Designated Player era ushered in by David Beckham in 2007 (Zlatan reportedly won’t be a DP and will received close to $3 million per year via TAM) many stars have come and gone in MLS with varying degrees of success. It isn’t an exact science as you need big name players to buy into the different challenges MLS brings up and, in essence, almost adapt their own games and reinvent themselves a little.
Some of the biggest names have struggled massively, while others have excelled and even elevated their previous status among the U.S. and global soccer community due to their play in MLS.
Below is a look where Zlatan’s arrival currently ranks in terms of the superstars to come to the U.S., with his ranking no doubt set to rise if he bangs in goals and keeps up his impressive artistry of the English language off the pitch.
Remember: below is a ranking of the top overseas stars to arrive in MLS during the DP era, so there are no U.S. national team or Canadian national team players because Michael Bradley, Clint Dempsey, Jozy Altidore, Landon Donovan and others would all be in this list otherwise.
Let’s be clear, we are talking about big-name overseas stars who have arrived as much for their superstar status off the pitch as well as their obvious playing talent to help the status of the league grow. We are focusing on the star power in the list below, with current MLS players in bold.
- David Beckham (LA Galaxy)
- Sebastian Giovinco (Toronto FC)
- Zlatan Ibrahimovic (LA Galaxy)
- Robbie Keane (LA Galaxy)
- David Villa (New York City FC)
- Thierry Henry (New York Red Bulls)
- Bradley Wright-Phillips (New York Red Bulls)
- Diego Valeri (Portland Timbers)
- Tim Cahill (New York Red Bulls)
- Didier Drogba (Montreal Impact)
- Juan Pablo Angel (New York Red Bulls, Chivas USA, LA Galaxy)
- Nemanja Nikolic (Chicago Fire)
- Miguel Almiron (Atlanta United)
- Carlos Vela (LAFC)
- Bastian Schweinsteiger (Chicago Fire)
- Federico Higuain (Columbus Crew SC)
- Ignacio Piatti (Montreal Impact)
- Frank Lampard (New York City FC)
- Fredy Montero (Seattle Sounders, Vancouver Whitecaps)
- Kaka (Orlando City SC)
- Jermain Defoe (Toronto FC)
- Steven Gerrard (LA Galaxy)
- Giovani dos Santos (LA Galaxy)
- Andrea Pirlo (New York City FC)
- Rafael Marquez (New York Red Bulls)
ZURICH (AP) The United States remains at the top of the FIFA women’s rankings after winning the SheBelieves Cup, and England moved ahead of Germany into second.
The Americans went unbeaten in the four-team round-robin tournament they hosted this month.
England, which lost the final game 1-0 to the Americans, finished runner-up and climbed one ranking place Friday.
Germany dropped to No. 3 after a last-place finish that cost coach Steffi Jones her job. The Germans were ranked in the top two for almost 10 years.
Canada and 2019 World Cup host France each rose one place to Nos. 4 and 5, respectively. Australia fell two to No. 6.
North Korea climbed one place to No. 10, and No. 11 Japan fell out of the top 10 for the first time since 2007.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic has arrived in Major League Soccer.
The veteran striker terminated his contract at Manchester United earlier this week and the 36-year-old Swede will reportedly signed a two-year deal worth over $3 million per season with the LA Galaxy.
He confirmed that the Galaxy will be his club on Friday by taking out a full page advert in the LA Times in typically sarcastic fashion.
Zlatan kept it short and sweet, as the Galaxy’s new No. 9 will certainly be a blast in MLS, just for his off-the-field antics alone.
Usain Bolt has taken part in his first proper training session with Borussia Dortmund’s first team as he continues to chase his dream of being a professional soccer player.
The eight-time Olympic champion, who retired as a sprinter earlier in 2017 after the World Championships, is on a two-day tryout with Dortmund which many are merely saying is a publicly stunt.
Yet with Dortmund allowing Bolt, 31, the chance to train with first team stars on Friday it may be a little more than just a chance for media members to flock to watch Dortmund in an open training session. Given the fact that Dortmund are sponsored by Puma, the same sponsor Bolt has, many are connecting the dots and it was a laid back training session on Friday as Bolt spent plenty of time signing autographs after scoring a header and a penalty kick.
Remember: Bolt is a lifelong Manchester United and has mentioned many times over the years that he would like to turn to professional soccer.
Earlier this month he announced he will captain a World XI at Old Trafford in a UNICEF charity game in June 2018, with Bolt teasing the planet on social media by saying he had signed for a soccer team. With his speed, power and size, is it really that far-fetched to think he could be a good targetman if he can sort out his hold up play and work on his endurance to last 90 minutes?
Watch the videos below as the Jamaican superstar scored a pretty solid PK, took part in training and obviously had most of Dortmund’s star players, such as Mario Gotze and Nuri Sahin, in awe.
Let’s see what the future holds for Bolt, but this is probably little more than Peter Stoeger and Dortmund having a longstanding offer accepted by Bolt to train with them. Maybe he could turn out for Dortmund’s reserve squad in a scrimmage and go from there?