Portugal

Houston lands third DP in Argentina U-20 vet Martinez (video)

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As if Houston’s attack wasn’t dynamic enough, the Dynamo have added another young talent to complete its corps of Designated Players.

Argentine attacking midfielder Tomas Martinez, 22, joins Alberth Elis and Erick Torres as Houston’s youthful DPs, and he looks the part.

The River Plate product arrives from an underwhelming stint at Braga in Portugal, but made 10 appearances with two goals for Argentina’s U-20s. That includes 90-minute runs in all three matches of the 2015 U-20 World Cup on a squad with Angel Correa and Giovanni Simeone.

[ MORE: West Ham, WBA, NUFC close in on new blood ]

Currently sitting third in the Western Conference, Houston’s turnaround under Wilmer Cabrera has been dramatic; The Dynamo finished second-last in points last season, just three ahead of bottom-feeding Chicago.

The question in adding another young focal point is how much is too much? The Dynamo have yet to win on the road, and Cabrera will need to lean on DaMarcus Beasley and Ricardo Clark for continued leadership.

Barcelona nabs influential Benfica fullback Nelsinho

Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images
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Barcelona’s summer has been relatively quiet on the transfer front, though inking Lionel Messi to a contract extension carries a lot of weight.

Thursday changed that, in part, as Barca added one for now and the future in Portuguese full back Nelson Semedo (pending a medical).

“Nelsinho” was the ninth-top performer in Portugal’s top flight with Benfica last season.

[ MORE: Transfer rumor roundup ]

The 23-year-old has six caps for Portugal, and played in the Confederations Cup though he was not on the nation’s EURO winning side.

Semedo has 65 senior appearances for Benfica with three goals and 12 assists. He was linked to Premier League side Newcastle United earlier this summer.

VIDEO: Ronaldo boasts gaudy crystal-encrusted boots in museum

AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev
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Cristiano Ronaldo has played on three clubs in his career, and has memorialized two of those by breaking out the Bedazzler and shining up his boots.

Okay, so he didn’t use a Bedazzler; Ronaldo enlisted a designer to decorate boots for his museum, kicks made fancy to commemorate his time in the Premier League and La Liga.

[ MORE: The risks of Rooney ]

T Daniel is the designer’s name, and he claims he’s customized Swarovski-crystal encrusted items for “Premiership footballers, NFL players, Top models, Pop stars, Rap stars, Politicians, Hollywood actors, DJ’s, Fashion designers and many more.”

Well who else is there, aside from lowly Internet soccer typists?

<blockquote class=”instagram-media” data-instgrm-captioned data-instgrm-version=”7″ style=” background:#FFF; border:0; border-radius:3px; box-shadow:0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width:658px; padding:0; width:99.375%; width:-webkit-calc(100% – 2px); width:calc(100% – 2px);”>

<p style=” margin:8px 0 0 0; padding:0 4px;”> <a href=”https://www.instagram.com/p/BWFNw3XB66d/&#8221; style=” color:#000; font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; font-style:normal; font-weight:normal; line-height:17px; text-decoration:none; word-wrap:break-word;” target=”_blank”>Cristiano Ronaldo”s 2nd customised boot to commemorate his time playing in the Barclay’s Premiership at Manchester United by @bytdaniel now on show at his museum @museucr7funchal Follow our page for future events and collaborations @cristiano @elma_oficial @cr7onlinestore @franciscardoso1 @lukerind @angietdaniel #cr7 #swarovski #cristianoronaldo #mufc #manchesterunited #football</a></p> <p style=” color:#c9c8cd; font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; line-height:17px; margin-bottom:0; margin-top:8px; overflow:hidden; padding:8px 0 7px; text-align:center; text-overflow:ellipsis; white-space:nowrap;”>A post shared by T Daniel Tokunbo (@bytdaniel) on <time style=” font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; line-height:17px;” datetime=”2017-07-03T10:43:23+00:00″>Jul 3, 2017 at 3:43am PDT</time></p></div></blockquote>
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Portugal wins third-place at Confederations Cup (video)

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Pepe’s stoppage time equalizer and Adrien Silva’s extra time penalty kick helped Portugal to a third-place finish in the Confederations Cup as Mexico self-destructed against the EURO 2016 champs in Russia on Sunday.

A Luis Neto own goal and missed Portugal PK had Mexico up 1-0 until the late stages, but Portugal’s deserved win came after the teams played level through 90 minutes for a second time in two weeks.

Nelson Semedo was shown red in the 106th minute, but Raul Jimenez was shown his second yellow six minutes left in the match. Mexico should have been awarded a penalty near the end of stoppage time, but Pepe’s clever foul went uncalled and Juan Carlos Osorio was sent from the stadium after barking into the fourth official’s ear and bumping him.

Portugal will finish third in its first Confederations Cup, while Mexico finishes fourth for the second time.

[ MORE: 2017 Confederations Cup news ]

Rafa Marquez chopped down Andre Silva in the 18, and Video Assistant Referee made sure the Mexican defender gave away a penalty kick.

Marquez was given yellow for the takedown, as he kicked Silva’s knee. The new AC Milan attacker took the pen with Cristiano Ronaldo away from the team, but Guillermo Ochoa dove low and right to slap the ball wide of the frame (VIDEO).

Portugal then headed the ensuing corner over the frame, and the match remained scoreless in the 18th minute.

Chances at either end went wanting as Pizzi’s far post shot took a slight uncalled deflection that dragged wide for a goal kick, and Marquez nearly bundled a crossed free kick past Rui Patricio.

The Portuguese keeper made a point-blank stop on Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez in the 31st minute, drawing “Mex-i-co” chants from the Spartak Stadium crowd.

Portugal was on the front foot in the second half, with Joao Moutinho blazing an effort over the bar and Gelson Martins shooting a clever chipped pass from Silva outside the near post.

[ FOLLOW: PST’s USMNT coverage ]

Yet Mexico went ahead through Chicharito’s cross banging off Luis Neto and into the Portugal goal in the 54th minute.

Pizzi missed wide with a bid for an equalizer just before the hour mark. Ochoa then made a terrific one-handed stop on a Martins header. Captain Nani then headed the ensuing corner wide of the far post.

Pepe then knotted things up in stoppage time, leaping for a martial arts-style finish of substitute Ricardo Quaresma’s cross to make it 1-1.

Jimenez saw a shot deflected out for a corner early in the first period of extra time, and the ensuing corner led to Patricio’s stellar save at the back post.

After what could’ve been red cards to both sides in the Portugal end, Martins won the decisive penalty kick when his cheeky juggle around Miguel Layun clipped the former Watford man’s raised arm.

Mexico nearly found a rescue of its own following the pair of red cards, but Patricio dove to save from Hector Herrera’s bullet. Then Pepe was allowed a push of Hector Moreno as the latter missed a close-range header deep into the second period of extra time. Mexico could have easily been given a penalty, but was not.

VIDEO: VAR gives Portugal a penalty, Ochoa bails out Marquez

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Rafa Marquez chopped down Andre Silva in the 18, and Video Assistant Referee made sure the Mexican defender gave away a penalty kick.

[ STREAM LIVE: Portugal vs. Mexico ]

Marquez was given yellow for the takedown, as he kicked Silva’s knee. The new AC Milan attacker took the pen with Cristiano Ronaldo away from the team, but Guillermo Ochoa dove low and right to slap the ball wide of the frame.

Portugal then headed the ensuing corner over the frame, and the match remained scoreless in the 18th minute. This was VAR at its best. though there are plenty of counter examples from this 2017 Confederations Cup.