Category Archives: Football

FIFA Delay Barcelona Transfer Ban

By Brad Eveleigh

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FC Barcelona have had their transfer ban put on hold by FIFA allowing them to now make player purchases and sales in the upcoming European Summer market.

The club was originally handed a 14-month ban after they had been found to have breached the player transfer rules by signing international players under the age of 18.

FIFA have now decided to delay the suspension pending an appeal.

The defending Spanish Champions received a notice on April 2nd by FIFA’s disciplinary committee in regards to breaking the rules in the signing of 10 juniors (players names are confidential).

They were hit with a 450,000 Swiss franc fine along with the transfer suspension.

As expected, Barca’ fought the suspension and lodged an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for sport.

Due to the complexity of the case and further possible appeals, the case is not a certainty to conclude before the opening of the transfer market on July 1, hence FIFA’s decision to delay the punishment.

Club officials will be breathing a sigh of relief as the team Captain Carles Puyol and veteran goalkeeper Victor Valdes will both be leave at seasons end and will need their big shoes filling as soon as possible.

The FIFA International transfer rule states that International transfers are only permitted for players over the age of 18 unless:

  • The Under-18 player can move to a club in a different country if their parents move there for non-footballing reasons,
  • If they are from another nation within the European Union or European Economic Area and aged between 16 and 18
  • If they live within 100km of the club

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FIFA Secretary-General Inspects World Cup Stadiums

By Brad Eveleigh

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The Secretary-General of FIFA, Jerome Valcke has attended the Itaquerao Stadium in Brazil to inspect the delays of construction for the 2014 Football World Cup.

The Itaquerao Stadium will host the opening fixture between Brazil and Croatia on June 12, less than two months away.

Valcke said there is “not a minute to lose” as there is still a lot of work to do before completion can be declared.

He was confident that it would be ready in time saying, “we are running against time, but yes, the stadium will host the opening game”.

Construction at the Itaquerao Stadium came to a drastic halt last November when two workers were killed by a collapsing crane. Sadly an additional death also occurred earlier in the year to a construction worker who was helping install 20,000 temporary seats that will be needed for the opening. Both these tragic losses caused obvious delays.

Vlacke’s agenda now leads him South to Porto Alegre and Curitiba, where he will receive updates from local organisers about the delays and potential issues there.

Curitiba will house World Champions Spain against Australia on June 23 and the Football Federation Australia boss David Gallop has publicly expressed is concern over the conditions of the stadium. Let’s hope the report comes back positive for all parties involved.

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Bayern München Break League Title Record

By Brad Eveleigh

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FC Bayern München have been crowned Champions of the German Bundesliga for the 24th time with a record 7 games to spare after a 3-1 victory over Hertha Berlin.

Mathematically, Bayern could have ended the title race last Match Day however; a win by the distant 2nd placed Borussia Dortmund just delayed the invertible.

An early goal to midfielder Toni Kroos from 14 yards set the tone and took the club to a European record equaling 64th consecutive goal-score game – tied with Barcelona.

Mario Gotze extended the lead to 2 with a headed goal delivered by a cross from Bastian Schweinsteiger, which really sent the fans into a celebratory frenzy.

Adrian Ramos reduced the deficit from the penalty spot for Hertha Berlin to create a sniff of a chance to upset the championship party, but a cheeky lob from the by-line from Franck Ribery in the 79th minute sealed the title.

This was Bayern’s 52nd consecutive league game without defeat, which includes a record breaking 10 consecutive away matches. The previous record was 9 in which they set last season.

Bayern set a solid platform early in the season to break the record for the fastest League Title by winning 25 of their first 27 games (the other 2 games were drawn). They sent shivers through the league as they knocked home 79 goals in that 27 game period.

With the League now wrapped up they set their sights on next weeks Champions League Quarter-Final tie with English club Manchester United, who are surprisingly sitting mid-table in their respective League.

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pic: football prss

 

Sol Campbell blasts The FA and Fans for being Racist

By Brad Eveleigh ( @Brad_Eveleigh )

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Former England football international, Sulzeer Jeremiah “Sol” Campbell, has launched a controversial attack towards the English Football Association (The FA) accusing them of being racist.

The 39-year-old, who played for Arsenal, Tottenham, Portsmouth and Newcastle United, has said the FA and the England fans were and are unfavorable towards a Black or mixed-race Captain for the National team.

Campbell, who earned 79 caps for England, has said in his biography “If I was White, I would have been Captain for 10 years. It’s as simple as that”.

“ I think The FA wished I was White. I had the credibility, performance-wise, to be Captain.”

“I don’t think it will change because they don’t want it to, and probably the majority of the fans don’t want it, either.”

“It’s alright to have Black Captains and mixed-race in the under-18s and under-21s but not dot the full national side.”

“There is a ceiling and although no one has ever said it, I believe it’s made of glass.”

Campbell did in fact captain the national side however only in friendly matches against Belgium, Czech Republic and United States.

He also went on to criticise the selection of Michael Owen as Captain ahead of himself saying “Michael Owen was made Captain ahead of me. I thought ‘What is going on here?’ I think The FA didn’t want me to have a voice.”

“Owen was a fantastic Forward but nowhere near being a Captain.”

“I’ve asked myself many times why I wasn’t [named Captain]. I keep coming up with the same answer. It was the colour of my skin.”

 

pic: Independent UK

FIFA World Football Rankings

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RANK TEAM POS + / – POINTS
1 Spain <> 0 1506
2 Germany <> 0 1314
3 Argentina <> 0 1255
4 Portugal 1 1219
5 Columbia -1 1211
6 Switzerland 2 1159
7 Uruguay -1 1157
8 Italy -1 1135
9 Brazil 1 1125
10 Netherlands -1 1122
11 Belgium <> 0 1117
12 Greece <> 0 1084
13 USA 1 1044
14 Chile 1 1038
15 England -2 1032
16 Croatia <> 0 966
17 Boznia-Herzegovina 2 919
18 Ukraine <> 0 917
18 France 2 917
20 Denmark 5 907
21 Mexico <> 0 887
22 Russia <> 0 862
23 Côte d’Ivoir -6 841
24 Ecuador -1 831
25 Sweden 1 821
26 Aigeria 1 819
27 Slovenia 2 799
27 Cape Verde Islands 8 799
29 Serbia 1 775
30 Armenia 8 711

The Debt-Ache Of The Bolton Wanderers

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By Brad Eveleigh ( @Brad_Eveleigh )

English Championship football club, Bolton Wanderers, have recently announced that they are in dept of £163.8m (AUD$304.35m).

Parent company, Burnden Leisure PLC, have released a statement containing its figures for the year that ended in June 2013.

In the club’s first season in the Championship (after being relegated from the Premier League) the group made a loss of £50.7m (AUD$94.2m), that seen their net debt rise to £136.5m (AUD$253.6m).

Bolton chairman Phil Gartside has told English press “This year’s results show the difficulties faced in the football business when a club has enjoyed a sustained and successful period in the Premier League, in our case 11 years, then suffers relegation back to the Football League Championship.”

Bolton were supplied with the £16m (AUD$29.7m) Parachute Payment that relegated Premier League clubs receive for financial aid.

This seems like a generous offer to help support clubs but those who are relegated have their Broadcast revenue cut from £42m (AUD$78m) to just £19 (AUD$35.3m).

The reduction in Broadcast revenue alone can see clubs that have spent long periods of time in the top flight plummet even lower trying to foot bills and wages.

The supporters have also effected the negative financial downturn that comes with the downgrade from top flight football with gate takings dropping from £5.7m (AUD$10.46m) to £3.8m (AUD$6.97m). That’s an attendance decrease of 24% for home fixtures.

Sponsorship and Corporate sales have also plummeted to add insult into injury.

We extend our warm wishes to the Bolton Wanderers Football Club and its supporters and all the very best in rebuilding the club in these difficult times.

Final 32 Qualifying Countries for the 2014 FIFA World Cup

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AFRICA

Algeria

Cameroon

Côte d’Ivoire

Ghana

Nigeria

 

ASIA

Australia

Iran

Japan

Korea Republic

 

EUROPE

Belgium

Bosnia – Herzegovina

Croatia

England

France

Germany

Greece

Italy

Netherlands

Portugal

Russia

Spain

Switzerland

 

NORTH, CENTRAL AMERICA AND CARIBBEAN

Costa Rica

Honduras

Mexico

USA

 

SOUTH AMERICA

Argentina

Brazil

Chile

Colombia

Ecuador

Uruguay

 

Group Stage configurations will be drawn December 6, 5pm GMT at the World Cup finals ceremony.

FIFA World Cup 2014 begins on Thursday, June 12, 2014.