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Scottish⑦Canuck
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Not really Euro news, but one of italy or Portugal are guaranteed to miss the World Cup after being drawn in the same 4 team playoff group. Only the winner will advance to the Cup finals.

 

Italy has a better first round match up, taking on North Macedonia, while Portugal faces Turkey.

 

Personally, the ideal result would be for both of them to miss. Let's go Turkey! :towel:

 

https://www.sportsnet.ca/soccer/article/one-of-italy-or-portugal-will-miss-world-cup-after-qualifying-draw/

Edited by RUPERTKBD
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https://www.sportsnet.ca/soccer/article/lionel-messi-wins-record-extending-seventh-mens-ballon-dor/

Lionel Messi and Alexia Putellas win Ballon d'Or awards

 

PARIS -- Lionel Messi won the men's Ballon d'Or for a record-extending seventh time on Monday, ending the year in style after a brilliant final season with Barcelona and earning his first major international trophy with Argentina.

Alexia Putellas became the third winner of the women's award for an outstanding season with Barcelona and Spain.

 
 

The 34-year-old Messi led Argentina to the Copa America title in July after losing in four major international finals.

"I'm very happy to be here, happy to keep fighting for new trophies," he said through a translator. "I don't know how many years I have left, but I hope many more. I'd like to thank all my (former) teammates at Barcelona and Argentina."

Messi finished with 613 points to top prolific Bayern Munich and Poland striker Robert Lewandowski on 580.

"I would like to say to Robert that it's an honor to be your rival, and everyone would say you deserved to win it last year," Messi said.

Awarded by France Football magazine, the Ballon d'Or has been given out to men every year since 1956 when Stanley Matthews won.

Both 2020 awards were canceled because the coronavirus pandemic disrupted the season.

The 33-year-old Lewandowski set a new single-season scoring record for the Bundesliga with 41 goals -- one more than late Germany great Gerd Muller -- when he scored in the last minute of the last game.

Lewandowski netted in 19 consecutive games in all competitions for Bayern from February to September and he just missed out on equaling the record of scoring in 16 Bundesliga games in a row. Overall, he already has 25 goals in 20 games for Bayern this season.

His 11 goals in 12 games for Poland this year took his international tally to 74 in 128 games, just six less than Messi.

Chelsea and Italy midfielder Jorginho was third with 460 points after helping the London club win the Champions League and his nation win the European Championship. Real Madrid and France forward Karim Benzema was fourth on 239.

Putellas helped Barca win the treble and scored 26 goals in 42 games overall. The midfielder netted in the Champions League final against Chelsea, and in August she was named UEFA women's player of the year.

"I'm very emotional, it's a very special moment," she said at the Paris ceremony through a translator. "I would like to start by thanking all my teammates, especially my current (Barcelona) teammates. For me it's a collective success."

The only previous women's award winners are Norway striker Ada Hegerberg in 2018, and U.S. forward Megan Rapinoe in 2019.

Putellas tallied 186 points to finish far ahead of club and country teammate Jenni Hermoso on 84.

Hermoso netted 31 goals to top the Spanish first division scoring charts for a third straight season. Hermoso was joint-top scorer in the Champions League with Chelsea's Fran Kirby on six goals.

Chelsea and Australia striker Sam Kerr placed third in the voting after 21 goals in the English Women's Super League and six for Australia at the Tokyo Games. Kerr has maintained her excellent form with 13 goals in 12 games this season.

Messi, meanwhile, counts two more Ballon d'Or awards than longtime rival Cristiano Ronaldo, who was sixth in the voting.

Messi's staggering tally of 672 goals for Barcelona included an extraordinary 50-goal league season in 2012; 96 league goals across 2012 and 2013; eight Spanish league and six Champions League scoring titles.

In his final season with the Spanish giant he netted 38 overall, winning his last trophy with a superb performance in the Copa del Rey final. At the Copa America, Messi was inspirational, finishing joint-top scorer with four goals and leading with five assists.

Then he stunned the soccer world by joining Paris Saint-Germain.

He has made a modest start with four goals in nine games. But he remains a constant threat, even when he's not in top form, as he showed on Sunday in a 3-1 win at Saint-Etienne where he set up all three goals.

In other awards, the Kopa Trophy for the best under 21 player went to 19-year-old Spain and Barcelona midfielder Pedri. He caught the eye at Euro 2020 and reached the Olympic final.

The Lev Yashin for best goalkeeper was won by Gianluigi Donnarumma, who helped Italy win the Euros.

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7 hours ago, Lateralus91 said:

Sounds familiar.

We got a dodgy offside decision the day after so I’ll have to bite my tongue on that :lol:

 

I watched the game yesterday. Totally farcical. It was a joke of a decision not to award Reus the penalty or even look at it. Then to go up the other end and give that when there wasn’t a single appeal… I genuinely don’t think any other team would have got those decisions yesterday.

 

Zwayer has always been a poor referee. I suspect Bellingham will find himself in hot water for his comments.

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2 hours ago, Scottish⑦Canuck said:

We got a dodgy offside decision the day after so I’ll have to bite my tongue on that :lol:

 

I watched the game yesterday. Totally farcical. It was a joke of a decision not to award Reus the penalty or even look at it. Then to go up the other end and give that when there wasn’t a single appeal… I genuinely don’t think any other team would have got those decisions yesterday.

 

Zwayer has always been a poor referee. I suspect Bellingham will find himself in hot water for his comments.

I hope he gets away with a fine. Ridiculous enough for saying the truth though I expect a suspension. Corrupt bunch of clowns that is the DFB / DFL. Had my fair share of experience with them as a youth coach. Ref lied to my face and the board at the first hearing. Of course the board believed him instead of 5 witnesses. Ruling got overturned in second instance in the end, but still...

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3 hours ago, Lateralus91 said:

I hope he gets away with a fine. Ridiculous enough for saying the truth though I expect a suspension. Corrupt bunch of clowns that is the DFB / DFL. Had my fair share of experience with them as a youth coach. Ref lied to my face and the board at the first hearing. Of course the board believed him instead of 5 witnesses. Ruling got overturned in second instance in the end, but still...

Sounds like the SFA. An old boy’s club.

 

I was in Dortmund for the Köln game a few weeks ago. Was enjoyable as always, but feels like things have gone a bit stale of late. Watzke’s ego is too big imo. Part of me wonders where you would be if Tuchel hadn’t clashed with him.

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14 hours ago, Scottish⑦Canuck said:

Sounds like the SFA. An old boy’s club.

 

I was in Dortmund for the Köln game a few weeks ago. Was enjoyable as always, but feels like things have gone a bit stale of late. Watzke’s ego is too big imo. Part of me wonders where you would be if Tuchel hadn’t clashed with him.

That's exactly what it is.

 

Yeah, some Ultra groups still aren't back I think. It's a different situation when part of the core setting the tone is missing.

 

Regarding Watzke: hard to say really. I can't really blame him in the situation with Tuchel. With the things Tuchel allegedly said there was really no other option. Overall a very difficult situation for all persons involved especially with the bus attack. I think from the people who were in the bus during the attack there is hardly anyone left at Dortmund and some players explicitly stated they had to leave because of psychological trauma from the attack (e.g. Marc Bartra). Just shows tensions were running high and everyone was barely holding it together. Plus the pressure from UEFA. There was also another problem between Tuchel and then-chef scout Mislintat. Mislintat left because of clashes with Tuchel. I don't think Tuchel would say those things again nowadays but I don't think there were a lot of options back then.

 

Watzke already wanted to retire but then the pandemic hit. The club seems a bit unsure about what they have in Kehl who is Zorc's designated successor and now they involved Terzic. Anyway there are big changes coming with Haaland leaving and  Watzke, Zorc, Reus, Hummels, Witsel probably retiring in the next couple of years.

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Several players and team staff of Manchester United infected with COVID . Their game on the road at Brentford scheduled for this evening is therefore postponed.

Manchester United can confirm that following PCR test confirmation of yesterday’s positive LFT Covid-19 cases among the first team staff and players, the decision has been taken to close down first team operations at the Carrington Training Complex for 24 hours, to minimise risk of any further infection.

Individuals who tested positive are isolating per Premier League protocols.

Given cancellation of training and disruption to the squad, and with the health of players and staff the priority, the Club is in discussion with the Premier League whether it is safe for Tuesday’s fixture against Brentford to continue, both from a Covid infection and player preparation perspective.

Team and staff travel to London will be deferred pending the result of that discussion.
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