The leading scorer in World Cup history has hung up his boots. For Germany, anyway.
Miroslav Klose, 36, has called it quits on one of the greatest international careers in history as the German forward has retired from playing for his nation. Klose broke the World Cup scoring record this summer as he has scored 16 goals across four tournaments for Die Mannschaft. Remarkable.
[RELATED: Klose breaks WC record]
The Polish born forward has been a predator for almost two decades but after Germany’s first World Cup trophy since 1990, he felt it was the perfect time to retire.
“The title in Brazil fulfilled a childhood dream of mine,” Klose said. “I am proud and happy that I could contribute to this great success for German football. There is no better time to close the national team chapter.”
In the history books, Klose’s name will always live on after he broke Ronaldo’s record and became the World Cups all-time leading goalscorer by scoring twice in Brazil. He also broke Gerd Muller’s record as Germany’s all-time leading scorer and amassed 71 goals in 137 appearances. Klose is also the only player to play in four or more World Cup semifinals, the third player in history to score in four separate World Cup tournaments and is the only player in history to be part of 17 wins at the World Cup.
The word legend gets used loosely in soccer. This man deserves that title.
Although Klose will not play for Germany again, he can now concentrate solely on his club team, Lazio, as the German striker will carry on playing in Serie A during the upcoming season. He has scored 40 goals in 100 games for the Rome club so far and will be aiming to score more, as always, in 2014-15. The former Kaiserslautern, Werder Bremen and Bayern Munich striker has scored 205 goals in 524 appearances at club level.
For compiling one of the greatest international careers soccer has ever seen, take a bow, Miroslav.
The Tournament of Nations got underway earlier Thursday, with Brazil and Japan drawing 1-1 in Seattle.
While some in the crowd may’ve been waiting to see the United States women’s national team and Australia in the second game of the twin bill, they got an absolute treat from Brazil’s Camila.
[ MORE: Galaxy’s season-changing signing ]
The Orlando Pride midfielder is yet to scoop up 10 caps, but blasted this 25-yard goal home with a wicked outside bend.
The aesthetics are terrific.
Remember this day, MLS fans, as one that perhaps helped determine an MLS Cup Finalist.
The LA Galaxy have signed Villarreal midfielder and Mexican national teamer Jonathan Dos Santos, and he’s the sort of player who could alter the landscape of the Western Conference.
Like Nicolas Lodeiro to Seattle last season and New England’s addition of Jermaine Jones in 2014, Dos Santos’ move comes with the distinct possibility of elevating LA into the next stratosphere.
[ MORE: USMNT’s Arriola attracting transfer interest ]
Take the Galaxy’s history of winning, and toss in a midseason coaching improvement from Curt Onalfo to Sigi Schmid, as well as MVP-in-their-own-right caliber teammates Giovani Dos Santos, Romain Alessandrini, and Jelle van Damme.
Don’t sleep on the fact that Schmid might be gathering momentum from inheriting a talented and underachieving roster and a brand new game-changing midfielder, which feels a bit like karmic retribution for Seattle firing him and signing Lodeiro the next day last season. Seattle only went and won the MLS Cup.
Schmid has used any number of formations, but could deploy a 4-3-3 with Jona Dos Santos, Jermaine Jones, and Joao Pedro in the midfielder and Giovani Dos Santos, Alessandrini, and Gyasi Zardes up top (Sebastian Lletget could return at some point, too).
Now FC Dallas is very deep, Sporting KC looks powerful, and Seattle won it all last year — plus, may be adding Derlis Gonzalez?!? — but LA’s move to add Dos Santos creates a quartet of teams with proven mettle (Houston looks decent, too, but I have concerns about their first-time as a unit in the playoffs).
Joey Barton’s 18-month ban for betting on almost 1,300 soccer-related events has been lowered to 13 months and one week.
Putting aside the hilarity of grown men and women discussing whether an extra week was necessary, the alteration means he’ll be eligible to return to football on June 1, 2018.
[ MORE: USMNT’s Arriola attracting transfer interest ]
While that still hampers the idea of the 34-year-old playing again — he’ll be 36 when the ban ends — it’s a significant change if he’s open to the idea of returning to the game.
Barton’s original ban expired in late October 2018, well into a season. From Sky Sports:
The appeal board also agreed: “It was clear that Mr Barton was not involved in any cheating, he did not influence any games and there was nothing suspicious about his bets.
“(The reduction) reflects the overall seriousness of the breaches and also the mitigation of Mr Barton’s addiction.”
Barton’s remarkably controversial career has including several suspensions and imprisonment, but he always found his way back to the field and was very good when in form. After time at Manchester City and Newcastle United, Barton fended off naysayers with stints at QPR, Marseille, Burnley, and a regrettable move to Rangers.
We may see him on the field in August 2018.
ZURICH (AP) FIFA has fined Qatar’s soccer federation after national team players breached rules against political statements by displaying T-shirts of the country’s Emir at a World Cup qualifier.
FIFA says its disciplinary panel imposed a 50,000 Swiss francs ($51,800) fine and reprimanded Qatar, the 2022 World Cup host.
[ MORE: Nainggolan staying at Roma ]
The incident happened in Doha on June 13, amid a dispute with regional rivals Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates.
Qatar’s players warmed up for a 3-2 win over South Korea wearing white T-shirts with an image of Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani to show their support for him.
FIFA says the charges related to “displaying a political image” and “political displays” by spectators.