June 24, 2014 |
THERE ARE two realities to contemplate after the United States' tension-packed, 2-2 draw with Portugal yesterday in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The first is that Team USA was seconds away from an historic World Cup victory when one of the best players in the world made a play that only best players in the world can make. The service that Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo delivered on the last-gasp header by Silvestre Varela was a masterful moment of brilliance. The glass-half-empty view is that the Americans blew the opportunity to clinch a spot in the round of 16 and now must get some kind of positive result in their final Group G match against Germany on Thursday or risk not advancing at all. But then there is the other reality - the one that has the glass half-full and acknowledges that the U.S. team is in exactly the position it had hoped it would be going into that final match with Germany.
March 29, 2013
The Week in Soccer Manchester United at Sunderland 8:30 a.m. Saturday (ESPN2) Led by Robin van Persie, United has a commanding 15-point lead atop the English Premier League, with just nine games left. Juventus at Inter Milan 10 a.m. Saturday (beIN Sport) Sixth-place Inter, led by forward Antonio Cassano, tries to knock off Italian league leaders Juventus, with ageless midfield maestro Andrea Pirlo. Barcelona at Paris Saint-Germain 2:30 p.m. Tuesday (Fox Soccer Channel)
March 7, 2013 |
MANCHESTER, England - Cristiano Ronaldo sent Real Madrid into the Champions League quarterfinals at the expense of his former club Manchester United by hitting his 40th goal of the season to clinch a 2-1 victory on Tuesday. The forward completed Real's comeback in the 69th minute to secure a 3-2 aggregate-goals win after the Spanish champions took advantage of United being reduced to 10 men on a controversial red card. Ronaldo opted not to celebrate the goal that clinched the win. "I am happy inside because Madrid got through," he said.
October 4, 2012
The NBA will penalize floppers this season, fining players for repeated violations of an act a league official said Wednesday has "no place in our game. " The league said players will get a warning the first time, then be fined $5,000 for a second violation, $10,000 for a third, $15,000 for a fourth, and $30,000 for a fifth offense. Six or more could lead to a suspension. The NBA defined flopping as "any physical act that appears to have been intended to cause the referees to call a foul on another player.
August 12, 2012 |
It may have only been the preseason for Real Madrid, but one of the world's top soccer powers showed it meant business during an exhibition tour in the U.S. The four-game tour, part of the World Football Challenge, concluded with Real Madrid's 2-0 win over reining Scottish champion Celtic, on a humid Saturday afternoon at Lincoln Financial Field. Thus Real Madrid appears ready to begin defense of its Spanish La Liga title. League play begins for Real Madrid on Aug. 19. Despite the usual festive attitude of an international competition of this variety, a somber scene occurred in the 72d minute when Dylan McGeough of Celtic was knocked out while going for a head ball.
August 11, 2012 |
Cristiano Ronaldo will be the headliner when Real Madrid meets Glasgow Celtic in Saturday's World Football Challenge at Lincoln Financial Field. Ronaldo also appeared in Philadelphia last season when Real Madrid faced the Union. A broader question is whether Ronaldo's appearance stateside could one day be a common occurrence. He was quoted recently saying that he would consider playing in Major League Soccer later in his career. With celebrated players such as David Beckham making MLS their home, nothing should be considered unrealistic.
August 10, 2012
Who: Real Madrid vs. Celtic What: World Football Challenge Where: Lincoln Financial Field When: Saturday, 1:30 p.m. (kickoff approx. 1:55 p.m.) TV: ESPN2 Tickets/parking: Log onto www.ticketmaster.com; parking is $20 on stadium grounds. Commuter info: SEPTA will run its Sports Express subway trains all day, with the Phillies hosting the Cardinals at 7:05. For kicks: Real Madrid has been on another scoring tear in its annual tour of the United States, coming off a 5-1 rout of Italian giants AC Milan at Yankee Stadium Wednesday night.
June 29, 2012 |
Far from its best, Spain still advanced to another major final, beating Portugal, 4-2, in a penalty shootout in Donetsk, Ukraine, on Wednesday after a scoreless draw at the European Championship. Cesc Fabregas, who came on as a substitute in the second half of regulation time, scored the deciding penalty after Bruno Alves hit the crossbar for Portugal moments earlier. Spain, seeking its third straight major trophy after claiming titles at Euro 2008 and the 2010 World Cup, will next face either Germany or Italy on Sunday in Kiev.
June 22, 2012 |
Cristiano Ronaldo had it all on Thursday: the deft touches, the blazing runs with the ball, the sulking, the petulance - and, in the end, that golden scoring touch to send Portugal into the European Championship semifinals with a 1-0 win over the Czech Republic in Warsaw, Poland. After bouncing two earlier attempts off the post, Ronaldo scored on a powerful header in the 79th minute off a cross by Joao Moutinho - a shot straight at the ground and up past the flailing hands of Czech goalkeeper Petr Cech.
June 19, 2012 |
Germany advanced to the European Championship quarterfinals without playing brilliantly. But after grinding out its third straight victory with a 2-1 win over Denmark on Sunday in Lviv, Ukraine, Germany finished on top of a group that didn't end up being as dangerous as it looked on paper. World Cup finalist the Netherlands was a major disappointment, losing all three Group B matches. Cristiano Ronaldo found his form just in the nick of time to beat the Dutch, 2-1, and take Portugal to the quarterfinals as runner-up to Germany.