Italy v Uruguay: Group D - 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil

What does Luis Suarez’s ban mean for Uruguay, Liverpool? Which games will he miss?

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We all knew it was coming, and now we know how long Luis Suarez will be out of action for, it is time to discuss the impact his absence will have.

Banned four months from all soccer-related activity, Suarez is out of the World Cup. He will not be able to train, play or even attend a game inside a soccer stadium across the planet.

One of the greatest soccer players in the world has been exiled.

While Suarez sits there twiddling his thumbs between now and October, two teams will badly miss the supreme, yet flawed, talent. His national team Uruguay, and his club team Liverpool.

[ RELATED: Luis Suarez handed four month ban by FIFA ]

[ VOTE: How long should Suarez have been banned for? ]

Without Suarez in their side, Uruguay will struggle to make it out of the Round of 16 at the World Cup. They face Colombia on Saturday in Rio de Janiero and many would expect a Suarez-less Uruguay to get knocked around by a talented Colombian outfit. Even if they make it through that, they will face hosts Brazil or fellow South Americans Chile in the quarterfinals. With a misfiring Edinson Cavani up top as Uruguay’s only other attacking option, Suarez has let his country down when they needed him most. Without him they wouldn’t have beaten England, as Suarez’s two goals secured the crucial victory and his tenacious display either side of his inexcusable bite, wore down Italy’s defense. He is the ‘X’ factor that a defense-minded Uruguay need to unlock other teams. Now, he’s gone.

source: Getty Images
Suarez bite Italian defender Chiellini on Tuesday, as the Uruguayan bit another player for the third-time in his career.

As for Liverpool, Suarez will not be around for the first three months of the Premier League season and will not play until the first week of November. Below is a list of the 13 games Suarez could miss for Liverpool.

Just like last season when his ban for biting Branislav Ivanovic carried over to the first few months of the 2013-14 campaign, Liverpool will be without their star man. They coped pretty well without Suarez to begin the last season. Can they do it again?

They do have Daniel Sturridge to rely on up top, as the English striker scored 21 PL goals last season and was the second-highest scored in the league behind, you guessed it, Suarez. They also have acquired Rickie Lambert over the offseason to bolster their attack. Liverpool should get by just fine in the PL during Suarez’s absence, but they will miss his supreme talents in the UEFA Champions League against Europe’s elite. It remains to be seen whether or not they sell Suarez or sue him for breach of contract, as this story is far from over.

Suarez’s absence will hurt Liverpool and Uruguay, as his latest act of lunacy will impact club and country. Big time.

GAMES SUAREZ WILL MISS

16 August 2014: Southampton (H)

23 August 2014: Manchester City (A)

30 August 2014: Tottenham (A)

13 September 2014: Aston Villa (H)

16-17 September 2014: Champions League fixture

20 September 2014: West Ham (A)

23-24 September 2014: Capital One Cup third round

27 September 2014: Everton (H)

30 September – 1 October 2014: Champions League fixture

4 October 2014: West Bromwich Albion (H)

18 October 2014: QPR (A)

21-22 October 2014: Champions League fixture

25 October 2014: Hull (H)

Bayern’s Vidal says “ugly” Atletico not deserved UCL finalists

MADRID, SPAIN - APRIL 27: Juanfran of Atletico Madrid and Arturo Vidal of Bayern Munich argue during the UEFA Champions League semi final first leg match between Club Atletico de Madrid and FC Bayern Muenchen at Vincente Calderon on April 27, 2016 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
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Bayern Munich midfielder Arturo Vidal has declared “ugly” Atletico Madrid unworthy finalists in the UEFA Champions League.

Bayern was eliminated in the Champions League semifinal by Atleti on Tuesday, with Diego Simeone’s Spanish side advancing on away goals.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s UCL coverage ]

However, Vidal believed Bayern were the better team in the second leg, saying Atletico played “ugly football” to get through.

Today ugly football – Atletico – played against the best football in the world. The only time they saw the ball was for the goal.

They are going to be dreaming about us right up to the final. They did not have the ball, they took on the best team in the world, they took their chances and got to the final.

The best does not always win in football, like today. They are not deserved finalists.

Bayern Munich controlled more than 70-percent of possession and had 33 shots compared to Atletico’s nine, but those stats mean little as Antoine Griezmann’s away goal was enough to send Atleti to the final.

[ MORE: Former England striker Joe Cole headed to NASL’s Tampa Bay Rowdies ]

Atletico may not play the most attractive football, but after eliminating Barcelona and Bayern Munich in consecutive legs, it’s hard to argue anyone deserves this more than Simeone’s men.

Europa League preview: Liverpool, Shakhtar look to overcome Spanish foes

VILLARREAL, SPAIN - APRIL 28:  Cedric Bakambu of Villarreal is watched by the Liverpool defence during the UEFA Europa League semi final first leg match between Villarreal CF and Liverpool at Estadio El Madrigal on April 28, 2016 in Villarreal, Spain.  (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
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The second leg of the Europa League semifinals kick off tomorrow, with two La Liga sides looking to make it an all-Spanish final.

[ MORE: Premier League Playback ]

Villarreal holds a 1-0 lead over Liverpool, while Sevilla scored two away goals in their 2-2 draw at Shakhtar Donetsk.

Liverpool vs. Villarreal – 3:05 p.m. ET
Villarreal won first leg 1-0

Adrian Lopez’s late winner in the first leg has given Villarreal a slight lead, while the Spanish side did well not to concede an away goal. However, Liverpool have overcome deficits at Anfield before, including their memorable 4-3 victory over Borussia Dortmund in the quarterfinals. Emre Can is back fit for the Reds, as manager Jurgen Klopp will hope his fellow German can help the team to a cup final in his first year in charge.

[ RELATED: Liverpool preparing for another big Thursday night at Anfield ]

Sevilla vs. Shakhtar Donetsk – 3:05 p.m. ET
First leg ended 2-2 draw 

Sevilla are looking to become the first team to win three consecutive Europa League titles as the two-time defending champions face off against Shakhtar Donetsk. Sevilla are in the driver’s seat after scoring two away goals in Ukraine, and will feel confident of advancing to the final with a great home record at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium.

Men in Blazers podcast: Celebrating Leicester’s title with Arlo White

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In the latest Men in Blazers podcast, Rog and Davo celebrate Leicester City’s improbable Premier League title with Leicester’s own Arlo White.

All of the MiB content — pods, videos and stories can be seen here, but to really stay in touch, follow, subscribe, click here:

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European police say Russian mafia infiltrating soccer clubs

LISBON, PORTUGAL - NOVEMBER 04:  Sporting Lisbon fans celebrate after their team score a goal during the Portuguese Liga match between Sporting Lisbon and Uniao Leiria at the Alvalade XXI Stadium on November 4, 2005 in Lisbon, Portugal.  (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
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LISBON, Portugal (AP) Portuguese and European police say they have broken up a cell of an important Russian mafia group that allegedly laundered money through European football clubs.

Europol, the European Union’s law enforcement agency, said in a statement Wednesday the group identified EU football clubs in financial distress and infiltrated them with benefactors who brought much-needed cash.

[ MORE: Man City bounced from UCL ]

Once they were in control, the mobsters allegedly laundered millions of euros (dollars) through player transfers, TV rights deals and betting.

Portuguese and European police on Tuesday raided third-division Portuguese club Uniao de Leiria and arrested three key members of the Russian gang. Three other Portuguese clubs’ premises were searched.

Europol said the operation helped identify serious crimes in Austria, Germany, and the United Kingdom, though it gave no details.