Cristiano Ronaldo’s tendinosis is not going to go away over the next four weeks. If the nature of the ailment alone didn’t convince you, consider what happened today in training. The Real Madrid star, who has been hampered by the problem throughout his preparation for the 2014 World Cup, was forced to leave the Seleccao’s session early, his left knee wrapped in ice as he departed.
Portugal opens their World Cup Monday against Group G favorites Germany before facing the United States the following Sunday. The team’s final group stage match is against Ghana on June 26.
With a health Ronaldo, Portugal is favored to get out of the group. Without him, there isn’t much that separates them from the United States or Ghana. In this in between state — where nobody knows if, how much, or at what level Ronaldo will play — it’s almost impossible to assess whether Paulo Bento’s team will be able to survive the World Cup’s deepest group.
From the Associated Press:
Ronaldo trained with the rest of the team for about 15-20 minutes doing physical exercises but then did not take part in the rest of the session with full ball drills.
Instead, he stretched on his own and signed a few shirts for fans before going to sit on the bench. When he left, he had an ice pack over his left knee.
[ MORE: Soccerly cover the World Cup ]
For hardcore U.S. and Ghana fans, this is obviously good if unfortunate news. For the rest of the world, not so much. The potential for one of the game’s biggest stars to struggle through the World Cup takes a little away from the sport’s marquee event.
In some ways, all managers are the same: intelligent football men messing around with the puzzle that is winning matches.
But to listen to Jurgen Klopp’s introductory press conference is to get a different view. While some managers sound like they create the puzzles, or even create the game itself, Klopp speaks of the challenge with reverence.
[ MORE: Klopp unveiled as “the Normal One” ]
In other words, it seems unlikely we will be hearing him utter phrases designed at painting himself as a Picasso of the pitch, rather that of a museum curator.
For example, here’s the new Liverpool boss on the club’s history.
From JPW on Merseyside:
“Twenty-five years ago [since the last league title] is a long time,” Klopp said. “History is only the base for us, [we shouldn’t] keep the history in our backpack all day. I want to see the first step next week and not always compare with other times. This is a great club with big potential. Everything is there. Let’s try to start a new way. Everything is different – I don’t know it all but I’m a pretty good listener.”
The “normal one” speaks like an honor student, not the know-it-all professor demanding students regurgitate facts from the book he wrote and tossed on the syllabus.
And perhaps this is the manner in which the Reds will add a new, positive chapter to their storied history.
Broadcaster and New York soccer hero Shep Messing caused quite a stir with his comments during the Red Bulls/Impact match on Wednesday, and those words have cause plenty of reaction in MLS.
If you missed it, Messing claims that New York City FC is ready to move on from Jason Kreis after just one season, and that Seattle coach Sigi Schmid is set to swap jobs with the NYC boss.
Messing also claims that Caleb Porter could end his disappointing run in Portland to head back to college soccer.
Kreis and Schmid disagree. The latter says he loves the Sounders and is committed to bringing an MLS Cup to Seattle. Kreis was just flabbergasted.
“I was watching the game last night, and it caught me completely by surprise. I thought that was an absolutely ludicrous statement and unfounded,” Kreis said after training Thursday. “I have no knowledge of that information at all, and I kind of scratch my head because at the end of the day I’m very happy here.”
So is there any truth here? The Porter part makes sense, especially if the Timbers fail to make the postseason again and the brash coach wishes to go back to a place where he’s had success.
As for Schmid and Kreis, that’s a curious one. Maybe NYC’s star studded roster would like a change, and Schmid has more success with big egos. And Kreis would thrive just about anywhere, but why would NYC ditch a man who built this from scratch? They’ve invested so much in the ex-RSL legend.