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George delighted to open Enugu Rangers goal account

Ifeanyi George says he was excited to have scored for Enugu Rangers in their 3-1 victory over Kano Pillars in Nigeria Professional Football League rescheduled fixture at the Nnamdi Azikwe stadium last weekend.

Two early goals from Chibuzor Madu and one from the former Enyimba international forward ensured the Flying Antelopes got their first victory in the last five matches, and the attacker says the team was responsible for the emphatic victory.

"It's a great feeling that I did not only score but also put up a good showing in my first game for the club but again it was a team effort and it's great to come back to winning ways after a long time," George told NPFL website.

George was excited his partnership with Bobby Clement was seamless, and he is hoping they can go all the way to help Rangers end the 2016/17 season on a good note, unlike where they currently rank on the table.

"Myself...


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Exclusive: Bastian Schweinsteiger Comes in From the Cold at Chicago Fire

There is one thing Bastian Schweinsteiger, Germany’s World Cup winning captain, Manchester United outcast and now centerpiece of Chicago Fire’s hopes, doesn’t like about his new city.

“It’s a little bit weird when you drive a car, you know, and they overtake you from left and right,” he says. “A bit weird but I get used to it. They are big, the streets, compared to London, let’s say.”

The 32-year-old laughs as he talks to Newsweek on his way through security before a flight to Toronto for a three-game “road-trip” with the Fire. His team will lose the game Thursday against Toronto 3-1, Schweinsteiger’s first defeat as a Major League Soccer player. Next stop, New York against the Red Bulls, before swinging out west, climbing timezone escalators, for a game against LA Galaxy.

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Cardiff hotels already full for Champions League final

AP 9:40 a.m. ET April 27, 2017

LONDON (AP) — Supporters wanting to stay in the city hosting this season's Champions League final are in for a shock.

Hotels in Cardiff are expected to be completely full for the night of June 3, even though the semifinals haven't even been played yet. The only likely space available for fans in the Welsh capital is tents, some of which can cost up to $2,300 for the Saturday night.

UEFA, the governing body of European soccer, requires host cities to reserve hotel...


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A soccer fan in Iran looks identical to Messi

Andrew Joseph 7:00 p.m. ET April 27, 2017

Barcelona's Lionel Messi is one of the most recognizable athletes on Earth, and one Iranian soccer fan is embracing his uncanny resemblance to the Argentinian superstar.

Meet Riza Perestes. He's a regular guy from Iran, but he's gained popularity for his stunning resemblance to Messi.

The Mehr News Agency met up with Perestes, who was wearing an Argentina jersey, and took photos of the Messi doppelgänger.

Mehr News Agency

Mehr News Agency

Mehr News Agency

Mehr News Agency

Mehr News Agency

Mehr News Agency

Mehr News Agency

And here's the real Messi.

The hair, the beard, the similar face. Yeah, we totally see it.

(h/t 101greatgoals)

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Top PL Storylines: Bye-bye, St. Totteringham’s Day? So long, Sunderland?

Ahead of Week 34 of the 2016-17 Premier League season, we’re most looking forward to keeping an eye on the following storylines…

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s PL coverage ]

Cancel St. Totteringham’s Day?

8,018 days (otherwise known as 22.9 years) have passed since Tottenham Hotspur last finished above Arsenal in the Premier League. First of all, that’s a lot of days. Secondly, the time to reset that clock is nearly upon us, as Tottenham take a 14-point lead into Sunday’s North London derby (Watch live, 11:30 a.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com) — perhaps the final one to be played at White Hart Lane. With Arsenal having only five games left to play after Sunday, a 17-point deficit would be mathematically impossible to overcome, and would guarantee Spurs’ first PL finish above Arsenal since the spring of 1995.

The fact that Spurs could end that embarrassing, heinous streak in a game against...


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Asia-based FIFA official pleads guilty to corruption charges

An Asia-based FIFA official has pleaded guilty in a U.S. court to charges relating to bribery and corruption in elections for soccer's world governing body.

Guam Football Association President Richard Lai, who is a member of FIFA's Audit and Compliance Committee and is on the Asian Football Confederation's executive board, pleaded guilty in a federal courthouse in Brooklyn on Thursday to two counts of wire fraud conspiracy in connection with multiple schemes to accept and pay bribes to soccer officials.

Lai, a U.S. citizen, also pleaded guilty to failing to disclose foreign bank accounts and agreed to pay more than $1.1 million in forfeiture and penalties. The plea was entered before U.S. District Judge Pamela K. Chen.

Bridget M. Rohde, an Acting U.S. Attorney, announced the guilty plea and said it "marks another important step in our ongoing effort to root out corruption in...


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US Soccer and problems

As per FIFA’s last Big Count, around 24 million Americans were playing football in 2006 and 30 percent of American households contained someone playing the game.

There are somewhere around 4.2 million players registered with US Soccer, compared to 2014’s tally of just 3 million.

And during recent times, soccer has arguably become the second most popular participation sport in the States, behind baseball, even though its cultural imprint remains significantly smaller than the National Basketball Association (NBA) or the National Football League (NFL).

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While the numbers suggest that the spike in popularity is genuine, there is still great scope for improvement – and specifically so in respect of how clubs in the States develop individual talent.

The big breakthrough in the US will come when the States produces players of European Champions...


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Firefox unable to lead draft for RNG due to health reasons

Royal Never Give Up notified fans via weibo that League of Legends Head Coach Huang “Firefox” Tinghsiang will not conduct draft for the team on stage during the LPL final. Instead, Royal Club (Royal’s LSPL team) Coach, Lee “Heart” Gwanhyung, will conduct pick and ban for the team.

Health issues struck LPL finalist team Royal Never Give Up one more time in their summer split. After illness befell Liu “Mlxg” Shiyu, the team’s entire sub roster, and Jian “Uzi” Zihao, Head Coach Firefox began to suffer from health problems prior to RNG’s semifinal match against EDward Gaming. As a result, Heart lead pick and ban in the semifinal.

“Although Firefox accompanied the team to the Final, he has not yet made a full recovery, and Heart will lead the pick and ban on stage tomorrow,” Royal Never Give Up said on weibo. “Firefox and the other members of the coaching team will be able to counsel the...


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Tributes flowing for young soccer player who died during weekend ... - Courier Mail

TRIBUTES are flowing for a young amateur soccer player who died after collapsing during a match in Queensland on the weekend.

Blackstone United Dragons goalkeeper Robert Carpenter, 25, collapsed just after 1.30pm on Saturday at the Eagles Sports Complex in Mansfield, on Brisbane’s southside.

Mr Carpenter was treated at the scene by paramedics but later died at Princess Alexandra Hospital.

A Queensland Ambulance spokeswoman said the incident was a “medical case”, meaning Mr Carpenter’s condition was not brought on by an injury.

His sister Melanie Fryer posted on Facebook that her brother died doing what he loved.

“This will be a massive shock to many, and please help and guide us through this trying time,” Mrs Fryer said.

“May you rest gently and quietly. I love you my big brother.”

Mr Carpenter’s brother-in-law Ashleigh said he was “the most down to earth bloke anyone could have...


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Last Deni soccer rego day tomorrow | Riverine Herald - Riverine Herald

Deniliquin District Soccer Club will be holding one more registration day at Bennett’s Intersport from 9am tomorrow.

With the competition beginning next Saturday, all players need to be registered by noon tomorrow.

Adults can also register for the open grade competition, which caters for both women and men of varying abilities and gives the club’s older teenagers the opportunity to continue playing soccer against mature players.

Last year’s open grade competition was a huge success, according to club president Andy Paton.

‘‘General feedback from last year was that it was a lot of fun,’’ he said.

‘‘Many parent players were happy with how their fitness improved during the season as well.

‘‘We hope to field four open teams again this season with games played at 11.30am and 12.30pm each Saturday.

‘‘We need registrations in this Saturday to confirm the number of open players.’’

There...


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Bound for Barcelona - Courier Mail

RISING football star Bailey Ferguson has taken another step towards his dream ­of becoming a professional player.

The nine-year-old from Carbrook in Logan has been ­invited to train with FC Barcelona for two weeks later in the year.

The Catalan super club are leaders in European football, and feature global stars such as five-time world player of the year Lionel Messi and Brazil captain Neymar.

“He went to a five-day training camp over at Pine Hills Football Club through the FC Barcelona Football School and he was recognised there for his talent,” Bailey’s stepfather Kevin Ferguson, who is also the head of the Kimberley College Football Academy, said.

“The experience alone is obviously fantastic.”

Bailey’s mother Amy Ferguson said the Carbrook College Year 4 student had been kicking a soccer ball around since he could walk.

“He’s got an older brother, Jayden who has always played...


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Italy trounce Nigeria - ESPN FC

Godspower Igudia of Nigeria during the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Bahamas 2017. Godspower Igudia of Nigeria during the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Bahamas 2017.

Nigeria began her quest for a maiden FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup on a poor note, losing 12-6 to Italy.

Despite not having the best preparations in the weeks and months leading up to the competition, coach Adamu Adamu's team put up a brave showing against the Europeans in the early hours of Friday at the National Beach Soccer Arena, Nassau, Bahamas.

Abu Azeez (hat-trick), Victor Tale, Godspower Igudia and Emeka Ogbonna were the scorers for Nigeria, while Italy's Gabriele Gori was the star of the show with six goals to his name.

The Super Sand Eagles started well and went two goals up through Igudia and Tale in the first period before the Italians rallied back to ensure the first period ended in 2-2 draw.

World Cup trophy

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Soccer-Wenger says Arsenal, not Spurs, are north London's No.1 - Eurosport.com AU

Arsenal have never ended below Tottenham in Wenger's 21 years at the club although the gap has been narrowing, and last season they only leapfrogged Spurs into second spot on the final day of the season.

Victory at White Hart Lane on Sunday would almost certainly ensure that second-placed Spurs finish above Arsenal for the first time since 1995, but Wenger said a one-off achievement could not outweigh a long run of success.

"Let's be honest, I've answered that question about a shift in power over (many) ...years," he told British media on Friday. "Nothing changes in that.

"Do Spurs have to do more over a long period of time? I think so. You cannot say that the weight of one year has the weight of 20....

"For the pride and the continuity or our achievements, yes we want to fight to be in front of Spurs. (But) we have to focus on what is really important to us at this moment, which is...


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Soccer: State Cup in Tracy for two weekends - The Tracy Press

Cal North Soccer brought its State Cup competition to Tracy Sports Complex and Plasencia Fields over the weekend and will return again Saturday and Sunday. Participants include the top teams in Northern California, from boys and girls under-13 teams to men’s and women’s U19 teams.

Though no Tracy teams are in this year’s tournament, Tracy- and Mountain House-based coach Troy Dayak brought two of his teams, the 18U Katz women’s team and the U17 Wildfire girls team, to the opening rounds.

Tracy Youth Soccer League events coordinator Sherrie Mackay also invited Nick Lima of the San Jose Earthquakes to the event. Lima, a first-year defender with the Earthquakes, will provide an ongoing connection between the local youth league and the professional soccer team.

Lima said he hoped to inspire kids to get the most they could out of their sports.

“If you’re having fun with what you do and...


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In Soccer, Teams Change Logos at Their Peril - New York Times

“I think anything which is about their club is going to get interest from the fans and be emotive,” said Richard Kenyon, whose marketing firm Kenyon Fraser worked on the second rebrand with Everton. He later became the club’s director of marketing and communications. “I think it’s very important that any process like this brings the fans along with it.”

Continue reading the main story

For those recently tasked with reshaping Liverpool’s famous jersey crest and club badge, there were plenty of historic — and revered — elements to be considered: the liver bird, a mythical creature symbolic of the city; an image of twin flames, an early 1990s addition that pays tribute to the victims of the 1989 Hillsborough disaster that left 96 trampled or crushed to death at a Football Association Challenge cup game at Sheffield; and the Shankly Gates, a homage to Bill Shankly, widely considered...


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Indian Football: Players who have failed doping tests and where they are now

On 25th April, Tuesday, Arjuna awardee Subrata Pal was reported to have failed the doping test conducted by the National Anti-Doping agency (NADA). 30-year-old's sample 'A' test results were concluded positive for a drug named  Terbutaline.

While terbutaline is what is pharmacologically called a Beta 2 Agonist and is often used in asthma and respiratory conditions for instantaneous relief, it is also one of the banned substances listed by the World Doping Agency. 

It is alleged to increase performance in athletes by increasing blood flow to muscles but conclusive evidence for the same is still lacking. It is usually inhaled but in the goalkeeper's case, it was taken as part of a cough syrup (one of the rare uses of terbutaline). 

Subrata is not the first Indian to be have undergone the failure of a drug test, there are been a handful of players from the country who have been through...


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Messi gamble pays off as Barcelona stays atop La Liga with 7-1 win over Osasuna

BARCELONA – As Lionel Messi and Barcelona walked through the players’ tunnel before a 7-1 rout of Osasuna on Wednesday, the Camp Nou faithful unveiled a banner thanking Lionel Messi for his 500 goals with the club, the last of which had been the dramatic winner against Real Madrid in El Clasico.

At kickoff, a hum that sounded like a swarm of bees overtook an unusually cold and wet night as chants of “Messi! Messi!” enveloped the stadium. The noise is nothing new in Catalonia’s cathedral to football, but Sunday’s heroics at the Santiago Bernabeu seemingly made the chants carry slightly more meaning, just as they do seemingly every time the little magician pulls a lion out of his hat (a rabbit would be too simple).

Considering Osasuna is at the foot of La Liga and Barcelona played only three nights earlier, the decision to start Messi seemed questionable. Add in the fact that Messi...


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Paris Saint-Germain parts ways with ADC Pilot

AD carry Na “Pilot” Woo-hyung has departed European Challenger squad Paris-Saint Germain.

After joining up with the Bora “YellowStaR” Kim-led team back in December 2016 with the intention of qualifying for the European League Championship Series, Pilot and PSG failed to qualify from the Challenger series for the 2017 EU LCS Summer Promotion Tournament..

“Pilot was one of my first choice for his position” said Yellowstar in a statement on PSG’s website. “He is very talented and I had already noticed him a few years ago while he was beginning in LCK.

“It was the first time that he had to leave his home country to come in Europe. Unfortunately, he hasn’t managed to make his mark in Europe and has been confronted to the language barrier. We had some very good moments with his constant enthusiasm. However, the defeat has been badly lived by the team and from a common understanding, we...


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DFB-Pokal: Dortmund's Bender plays down goal-line heroics in win over Bayern

Sven Bender insists his amazing goalline clearance in Borussia Dortmund's DFB-Pokal win over Bayern Munich had an element of luck.

Goals from Javi Martinez and Mats Hummels had given Bayern a 2-1 lead at the Allianz Arena when striker Robert Lewandowski squared the ball to Arjen Robben in the 65th minute.

The Dutch winger looked certain to score but Bender somehow stretched out his leg to deflect the shot on to the post, which proved a turning point as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang levelled before Ousmane Dembele smashed home the winner.

Dortmund's victory over the Bundesliga leaders set up a final against Eintracht Frankfurt on May 27, but Bender played down the role of his clearance in his side's victory.

"I didn't get a good look," Bender told the DFB's official website. "I went back behind [goalkeeper] Roman Burki since I saw that he was standing slightly out of his goal. 

"I took a...


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Arrests made in soccer tax raids - Sky News Australia

British authorities arrested several men working in professional soccer on suspicion of tax fraud, in a far-reaching case that saw raids in England and France.

Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs did not say which clubs or individuals may be involved but the tax agency told legislators in December that 43 players and 12 soccer clubs in the British leagues, alongside eight agents, were being investigated.

HMRC said 180 officers were deployed across Britain and France in the crackdown on suspected income tax and national insurance fraud.

'Investigators have searched a number of premises in the northeast and southeast of England and arrested the men and also seized business records, financial records, computers and mobile phones,' HMRC said.

'The French authorities are assisting the UK investigation, have made arrests and several...


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