Friday, November 29, 2013

Men in the mask: Real Madrid spook Gala with Ronaldo facade

Real Madrid were without Cristiano Ronaldo for Wednesday's Champions League clash with Galatasaray but the star man's presence was still felt as los Blancos romped to a 4-1 win over Roberto Mancini's men.

Approximately 45,000 supporters inside the Bernabeu wore masks of the man himself, to show support for Ronaldo's bid to win this year's Ballon d'Or.

Ronaldo has scored a staggering 25 goals for Real already this season but his absence did not stop the goals flowing with Gareth Bale, Alvaro Arbeloa, Angel Di Maria and Isco all on target.
Thursday, November 28, 2013 11:56

Klopp, Wenger & Benitez struggle with Group of Death permutations

The final round of group fixtures in Champions League Group F sees Arsenal, Napoli and Borussia Dortmund all still in with a chance of qualifying for the knockout stages.

Arsene Wenger’s men lead the way with 12 points following their 2-0 defeat of Marseille and travel to Italy in their final game to take on Rafael Benitez’s Napoli.

Dortmund lie second on nine points, and face Marseille, yet to score a single point, in their fixture making them heavy favourites to progress.

Yet Napoli also have nine points and know that a three-goal victory over Arsenal will also send them through with a nerve-jangling night of action in prospect.
Wednesday, November 27, 2013 09:29

Guardiola & Rummenigge turn Sherlock & Watson to seek out the Bayern spy

Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola has revealed his frustration after discovering tactics and information have been leaked to the press.

German newspaper Bild revealed Guardiola's tactical plan for Borussia Dortmund prior to the game and have also been exact with their predicted line-ups in recent months.

Chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has warned any player found to be responsible will be in “big trouble” with the duo set to turn into Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson mode in order to detect their mole.
Tuesday, November 26, 2013 11:45

Spurs sink under Man City's wave

Tottenham were the latest team to feel the full force of Manchester City's stunning home form as Andre Villas-Boas' charges collapsed to a 6-0 defeat.

Doubles from Jesus Navas and Sergio Aguero, along with a Sandro own goal and Alvaro Negredo's strike made it six wins out of six for Manuel Pellegrini's men at home in the Premier League this season, while defeat has left Spurs ninth in the table, but only two points behind fourth place.
Monday, November 25, 2013 12:00

Gotze leaves jilted bride Klopp in tears

After leaving Borussia Dortmund for Bundesliga title rivals Bayern Munich in the summer, it was almost inevitable that the Germany international would eventually come back to haunt his old club.

And, just over four months after moving the the Allianz Arena, Gotze made a telling contribution on his return to Signal-Iduna Park.

The 21-year-old came off the bench to a chorus of boos and broke the deadlock shortly after, firing past Roman Weidenfeller.

Bayern completed a 3-0 win thanks to Thomas Muller and Arjen Robben, but it was Gotze who Dortmund boss Jurgen Klopp believed to have changed the game.

"I do not care how badly we lost," he said. "The second and the third goal do not represent this match.

"Bayern played differently. They played many long balls and they were very patient. We had the bigger chances until the 1-0 and we had a huge chance for the 1-1.

"But you have to convert these chances. After the second goal you could see the team had a crack. I don't care about the third goal."
Sunday, November 24, 2013 12:30

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Merseyside gears up for demolition derby

Everton host Liverpool on Saturday lunchtime in what is sure to be a feisty affair.

Last season, Luis Suarez was credited with two goals and celebrated by diving in front of the Toffees' then manager David Moyes. The Uruguayan then had a last-minute winner incorrectly ruled out to leave the Reds furious.

Both sides have started the current campaign in fine form, and victory would mean third place for Everton or first place for Liverpool - ahead of the 3pm kick-offs, anyway.

With so much at stake, it's sure to be chaotic.
Saturday, November 23, 2013 08:30

Friday, November 22, 2013

DRAXULER! Schalke star seduces top bosses

The race for Schalke star Julian Draxler is hotting up - and doesn't he know it!

The Germany international has emerged as one of Europe's most exciting young prospects in recent years, with the likes of Premier League giants Manchester United and Chelsea strongly linked, as well as Real Madrid.

But the latest twist in the saga, after Goal had exclusively revealed David Moyes' side had joined the race for his signature, has resulted in Draxler fluttering his eyelashes in Arsenal's direction.

With more twists and turns still to come, you can count on the Draxuler saga being one you can sink your teeth into!
Friday, 22 November 2013 12:00

Missing superstars make World Cup plans

So that's it. Uruguay became the 32nd team to qualify for next summer's World Cup, completing the line-up ready to compete for football's biggest prize in Brazil.

But spare a thought for the stars of the game that will miss out on a trip to South America after their qualification campaigns ended in failure.

Ice cream and tissues will undoubtedly be at the ready for the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Gareth Bale and Robert Lewandowski, who will all be forced to watch the action unfold from the comfort of their sofas.
Thursday, 21 November 2013 12:00

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Zlatan, Blatter & the football world bow to mighty Ronaldo

Just when it looked like Zlatan Ibrahimovic might have sparked an incredible comeback for Sweden, Cristiano Ronaldo blew him out of the water with a magnificent hat-trick that sent Portugal through to World Cup 2014.

The Real Madrid superstar delivered three finishes of the utmost quality to roar back into the Ballon d'Or race.

Despite any mickey-taking from Fifa president Sepp Blatter, Ronaldo's performance - which saw him equal Pauleta's national record of 47 goals for the Seleccao - made the world stand up and take note.
Wednesday, November 20, 2013 08:19

Fat Chance! Bendtner won't get Barca or Madrid move

After missing out on a move to Crystal Palace because he was deemed overweight, it is fair to say that Spain's two biggest clubs won't be knocking on Nicklas Bendtner's door any time soon.

The striker said he would like to move to Barcelona or Real Madrid after he leaves Arsenal, and even though both clubs are in the market for a striker you would not bet on Sandro Rosell or Florentino Perez being seduced by the Great Dane.
Tuesday, November 19, 2013 08:00


Monday, November 18, 2013

Elephants and Lions join Super Eagles in Brazil

The 2014 World Cup continues to take shape, with more nations booking their places in the tournament next summer.

The Elephants of Ivory Coast secured their spot in Brazil with a two-legged victory over Cameroon on Saturday, as Salomon Kalou killed off the challenge from Senegal in stoppage time of the second leg.

And on Sunday, Cameroon's Indomitable Lions thrashed Tunisia after a goalless draw in the first leg to ensure Samuel Eto'o and Co. will be heading to South America.

Both sides will be joining the Super Eagles of Nigeria, who edged past Ethiopia, with the likes of Sweden and Portugal still battling it out for a place at the World Cup.
Monday, November 18, 2013 12:00

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Super Eagles book World Cup spot

Nigeria are one of the latest teams to have booked their place at next summer's World Cup following a 2-0 victory over Ethiopia on Saturday.

The Super Eagles secured their spot in Brazil thanks to Victor Moses' penalty and Victor Obinna's late free-kick.

Stephen Keshi's men will also be joined by Ivory Coast, who eased to a 4-1 aggregate victory over Senegal.
Sunday, November 17, 2013 12:00

Zozulya plucks France feathers

Roman Zozulya and his mates conqured France on the final European round of the World Cup qualifications. Ukraine beated France 2-0 to make things harder for the French team to qualify.

Ronaldo lands crucial blow in Ibrahimovic battle


Cristiano Ronaldo struck the first crucial blow in the battle between Portugal and Sweden for a place in the 2014 World Cup.

Much of the talk prior to the game surrounded which of football's superstars in Ronaldo and Zlatan Ibrahimovic would come out on top.

And it proved to be the Real Madrid star, who scored the only goal of the game in the 82nd minute, and he might have had a second but was denied by the woodwork.

Ibrahimovic, meanwhile, cut a peripheral figure in Lisbon and was unable to influence the game in his own inimitable style.

There is still plenty of time for the Paris Saint-Germain man to strike back however, with the second leg on home soil for the Swede.
Saturday, November 16, 2013 12:45

Friday, November 15, 2013

Round One: Zlatan & Ronaldo fight for World Cup place

They are two of the biggest stars in world football, but only one can go to the 2014 World Cup - Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Cristiano Ronaldo will go head to head for a trip to Brazil next summer.

The Paris Saint-Germain striker and Real Madrid giant are expected to line up for Sweden and Portugal respectively in Lisbon on Friday night in the first game of a two-legged qualifier.

And while both coaches - Paulo Bento and Erik Hamren - have insisted there is more to the clash than just Ibrahimovic and Ronaldo, they have also conceded the pair are potential match winners.

Can either land a crucial blow in the first leg ahead of the return tie in Sweden?
Friday, November 15, 2013 11:30

Bale declares admiration for Ronaldo

Gareth Bale has never kept his appreciation for Real Madrid team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo a secret.

Even prior to his move to the Bernabeu, the former Tottenham man indicated his preference for the Portugal star over Barcelona's Lionel Messi.

And having witnessed Ronaldo's quality first hand in Madrid, the Welshman has again declared his admiration for the 28-year-old.

"Cristiano is incredible, he scores hat-tricks every week," Bale told Real Madrid TV. "It's a pleasure to play with him."

But Bale has ambitions to continue to improve despite a promising start in Spain following his recovery from injury.

"The best is yet to come," he stated. "I've just finished my preseason and I can still give more.

"Now I'll be able to score more goals and help the team achieve success.

"It was just a matter of time until I got to 100 per cent. Now everyone is seeing what I can do. I need to keep working and hopefully there will be more goals."
Thursday, November 14, 2013 11:35

Moyes left to balance Manchester United injuries

David Moyes has been given little time to enjoy Manchester United's 1-0 victory over Arsenal at Old Trafford on Sunday.

The Scot saw Robin van Persie pull out of the Netherlands' friendlies against Japan and Colombia due to ongoing problems with his toe and groin.

Michael Carrick and Danny Welbeck, meanwhile, have also been forced to withdraw from international duty with England, who face Chile and Germany over the coming days,

The trio of injuries could leave Moyes balancing his options at Manchester United after the international period and hoping their good form in recent games does not fall apart.
Wednesday, November 13, 2013 08:00

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Ballon d'Or rivals tend to injured Messi

Barcelona may have been left reeling by the news that Lionel Messi could be out of action for eight weeks with a hamstring tear.

But with the announcement of the winner of the Ballon d'Or just around the corner, the injury may be considered something of a blessing for some of the game's biggest stars.

Messi - who won last year's award - is likely to be included in the three-man shortlist for the accolade to be announced in December.

However, the extended absence of the Argentina international could allow the likes of Franck Ribery, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Cristiano Ronaldo the chance to steal a march on the Barcelona superstar.
Tuesday, 12 November 2013 11:15

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Virus hits Arsenal to leave Wenger sick as a parrot


Arsenal's plans to overturn Manchester United at Old Trafford and extend their lead over their rivals to 11 points were scuppered on Sunday as the effects of a virus in their camp took their toll.

Tomas Rosicky and key defender Per Mertesacker were ruled out of the crunch match due to the illness and United ran out 1-0 winners thanks to a goal from former Gunner Robin van Persie.

Poor Arsene Wenger must have been feeling sick as a parrot after letting David Moyes win the first of their managerial battles across the historic rivalry.
Monday, 11 November 2013 07:36

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Shadow of Sir Alex looms as Moyes and Wenger face off at Old Trafford

Sunday sees a mouth-watering game take place in the Premier League as league leaders Arsenal travel to Old Trafford to take on reigning champions Manchester United.

The Gunners go into the game eight points clear of David Moyes’ men but have failed to beat the Red Devils in the Premier League on their own turf since 2002.

However, the hosts have begun the defence of their title in far from convincing fashion under new manager Moyes who knows that another defeat will leave his side a whopping 11 points behind the Gunners.
Sunday, 10 November 2013 07:43

Friday, November 8, 2013

Barbara wrestles Galliani while Silvio is about to sleep

A conflict in the management of AC Milan between club CEO Adriano Galliani and club president daughter Barbara Berlusconi in the time of AC Milan struggling season.

Pellegrini charms Nasri back to form


Manuel Pellegrini can be fairly pleased with his start to life as Manchester City manager - and arguably his biggest achievement is getting Samir Nasri hitting top form once again.

The former Arsenal midfielder had struggled under former boss Roberto Mancini but, if his man-of-the-match display against CSKA Moscow on Tuesday was anything to go by, he's back to his best.

Pellegrini's charm is clearly working wonders with Nasri and with Sergio Aguero also firing on all cylinders, City look well-equipped to challenge for the major honours in the 2013-14 campaign.
Friday, November 8, 2013 12:00

Thursday, November 7, 2013

The Brave Gooner

Arsenal rock Dortmund & hit the perfect note

It had been billed as the clash between Jurgen Klopp's heavy metal brand of football and Arsene Wenger's orchestra but when it was all said and done only one team was left singing the blues.

Aaron Ramsey's 11th goal of a superb campaign gave the Gunners a marvellous 1-0 win at Signal Iduna Park on Wednesday night, pushing Arsene Wenger's side to the summit of their Champions League group.
Thursday, November 7, 2013 11:01

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Jurgen's Kloppstars host Wenger's orchestra

Borussia Dortmund host Arsenal in the Champions League on Wednesday night with both sides looking to gain an advantage in a hugely competitive group.

But will the 80,000 supporters in the Signal Iduna Park be taking in a football match or a battle of the bands?

Jurgen Klopp compared the two club's contrasting styles as he spoke about Wenger. "He likes having the ball, playing football, passes... it’s like an orchestra," Klopp said, miming playing a violin.

"But it is a silent song. I like heavy metal more. I always want it loud."

No matter the football on show, one thing you can be certain of in a raucous Westfalenstadion is noise.
Wednesday, November 6, 2013 10:34

Real vultures close in on Suarez


Luis Suarez may be fully fit, suspension-free and free-scoring, but he will never shake speculation surrounding his future at Liverpool.

And so as the January transfer window approaches, what better time for Real Madrid to begin laying the foundations for a big money move?

The Liga giants may find it hard to muster the cash and convince the Reds to sell their star striker this winter, but he has certainly moved to the top of their wishlist with a series of impressive displays under Brendan Rodgers.

Expect numerous quotes from players, Florentino Perez and anyone with an affiliation to Madrid in the coming months, before a long and painful (but ultimately successful) pursuit in the summer.

The vultures are circling.
Tuesday, November 5, 2013 08:26

Monday, November 4, 2013

Where's Wenger: Arsenal keep tabs on Llorente & El Shaarawy

After being knocked back in his attempts to sign Wayne Rooney, Luis Suarez, Gonzalo Higuain and Stevan Jovetic, Arsene Wenger might be trying a more discreet approach to player recruitment.

The Arsenal boss is keeping tabs on Fernando Llorente and Stephan El Shaarawy with a view to a January transfer, but while Juventus and AC Milan are not exactly keen on letting their attackers leave, Wenger should probably keep a low profile...
Monday, November 4, 2013 12:00

Arsenal extinguish the SAS

It was an impressive performance at both ends of the pitch for Arsenal as they ran out 2-0 winners over Liverpool on Saturday.

In the attacking third, Santi Cazorla, Aaron Ramsey and Mesut Ozil linked up superbly with Olivier Giroud, while in defence, the commanding duo of Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny were able to nullify the threat of Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge.
Sunday, November 3, 2013 12:00

Head & Shoulders above Hart: Pantilimon in at City

The England goalkeeper may have a lucrative shampoo sponsorship deal but he'll be tearing his hair out after being dropped for Manchester City's game against Norwich on Saturday.

Costel Pantilimon, the 6'8" Romanian, will get his chance between the sticks after Hart committed a string of errors in the opening weeks of the season.
Saturday, November 2, 2013 11:00


Friday, November 1, 2013

Trick or treat? Maradona gives Aguero a scare

Diego Maradona had strong words for Sergio Aguero recently - labelling the Manchester City striker a "wimp" after alleged statements from the Argentina striker to attorneys.

Aguero and is his wife, Giannina Maradona, who is the daughter of the legendary former Napoli attacker, separated in January and Diego could not help but take a swipe at the 25-year-old City star.

"He told Giannina: 'I don't fear anyone'," Diego Maradona insisted to Metro Radio. "In the next meeting with the lawyers I want to be with my daughter to see if he has balls to say what he said to her [again].

"I'm really angry. He's a wimp. He knew that I was in Dubai, that's why he went to that meeting."

Let's hope Aguero kept all doors and windows locked on Halloween night!
Friday, 1 November 2013 10:00

Commander Cristiano shows Blatter who's boss


He may alledgedly spend more time in the hairdresser's, but boy does that Ronaldo know how to score goals!

After being satirised by Fifa president Sepp Blatter, who claimed Ronaldo was a commander on the pitch before doing a silly walk, the Portuguese made sure he had the last laugh by bagging a hat-trick on a crazy night in Madrid.

Gareth Bale scored twice, and set up another two, on a fine night for the Welshman (even if there was a comedy dive thrown in for good measure), while Karim Benzema hit two of his own.

Ronaldo, backed by the cheers of every home fan at the Santiago Bernabeu, marked his first goal of the night with the kind of salute fitting of a true field commander - over to you, Sepp!
Thursday, October 31, 2013 12:00

the Jordanian national team and the idea thief

On the September 2011, I drew a cartoon on Jordan achievement in the World Cup qualifications first phase in Asia, which was a “Football” wears an Arabic “Keffiyeh” (a traditional headdress) and heading to Brazil with slogan يلا عالبرزيل (Let’s go to Brazil) and so that the illustration was later published through Goal.com the Arabic edition.


Later on it popped to my mind an idea to draw a mascot to Jordan with a business plan to establish a T Shirt and merchandising industry to supports the Jordanian national team. So I went the Jordan Football Association on the 15th of May 2012 to meet the marketing manager Mohannad Mahadeen to work with the JFA on the idea. Mahadeen asked me to draw a mascot which I made him an eagle wears the Jordanian jersey.



Later he told me that the JFA can’t afford to spend on the project because they don’t have the cash. Later I was surprised to see the JFA is asking an advertising agency to design a mascot with using my slogan (Let’s go to Brazil) and recently they are printing T-Shirts with it to sell it to the markets before the important matches between Jordan and Uruguay.