Everyone knows the best player in the world is also pretty diminutive. Everyone also knows that second best player in the world is an absolute specimen of human and a bit taller. The great part about this information is that soccer has no definitions of height specifically of linked to world-class footballers. That’s why anyone can play and anyone can be successful. So I pitch this out to you… which team would you choose if you had to take only players over six feet tall or only those under 5′ 8?” The decision would be tough but I can tell you this, I would pay an incredible sum of money to watch this game go down.
From ESPN FC:
Ronaldo kicked out in frustration at Cordoba’s Edimar, with Madrid tied at 1-1, to earn himself a straight red card before Gareth Bale struck the winner.
However, the Portugal captain took to Twitter soon after the game to apologise for his actions.
“I apologise to everyone and especially Edimar for my thoughtless action in today’s game,” the tweet said.
I expect this from a lot of players but not Cristiano. That’s not to say he’s a saint, by no means. However, he usually is the player drawing the red card (Just ask Wayne Rooney) instead of the player receiving one. It is very out of character and Real Madrid will miss him for the next three games, assuming he gets the full three. Either way Bale will have to step up in his absence. This might be a God send for Bale because least while Cristiano Ronaldo’s out the fans can’t yell at Bale for taking a shot instead of passing to Ronaldo.
With the announcement of the FIFA Ballon d’Or shortlist today, the spotlight again falls on two of football’s current greats, four time winner, Lionel Messi and two time winner and current holder of the title, Cristiano Ronaldo. But how do the pair compare off the pitch?
This is a very interesting study and it is astounding how much each player’s social media pages are worth. Cristiano Ronaldo may not be better than Messi, depending on who you ask, but his social media prowess is second to none in the soccer world. He knows what he’s doing. It also helps that he has a more marketable personality. Some may seem him as arrogant and be annoyed by his pretty boy persona but there is no denying it has helped his international popularity. There is a saying that “all publicity is good publicity” and here this seems to apply. Many people may like Messi better because of his humility and quiet-nature; however, it is Cristiano’s personality that has contributed to his marketability. Head over to the link above to read more of Repucom’s insights. It is a very interesting read.
This is bad. Pitch invasions usually turn out to be harmless but there is a reason they are illegal because they can cause potential injury to the players on the field and interrupt the game at crucial times. There has been an ongoing debate about whether these pitch invaders are “harmless” and whether players like Cristiano Ronaldo should not reward them for their behavior because it encourages them. As we can see from this video, this problem can escalate quickly and if it is not harshly punished then there could be more pitch invasions in the future. The higher the number of pitch invaders, the higher the risk of potential problems.
Can someone tell me what is going on here? Is it supposed to be this awkward, a la “The Office”, or is it just this painfully awkward by accident? It seems like he is selling fitness equipment but the equipment he is promoting doesn’t make much sense. One thing is for sure though, Japanese people love Cristiano Ronaldo.
Real Madrid have built their reputation on fielding teams filled with “Galacticos.” Throughout soccer history every great player in their prime is linked, and maybe signed, by Real Madrid at some point in their careers. This reputation stems from the reign of Francisco Franco who was an avid Real Madrid fan and poured money into the club so they could field the best players from around the world. Players like Alfredo Di Stefano, Zinedine Zidane, Ronaldo, and now Cristiano Ronaldo have graced the grounds of the Bernabeu and been a part of some of the greatest teams this world has seen. It is no surprise that the strategy of garnering the world’s greatest players can lead to a great team. This is why so many current teams that are rich with oil baron money are willing to spend massive amounts of money to get the best players for their team. It is simple math, great players equal a great team and a great team equals glory. However, at a certain point when does this strategy become too much? When does the desire for the best players obfuscate the more important need for the best team?
There’s a reason young children like shiny new things, because they are eye-catching and foreign to them. The problem with children and shiny new things is that once the child finds a newer shiny object the appeal of the old shiny object loses its luster. In this metaphor Real Madrid is the child and the shiny new objects are the breakout players around the world. Last year the shiny new object was Gareth Bale and this year it is James Rodriquez, the Colombian breakout star of the World Cup. James Rodriguez is undoubtedly a prodigious talent with a very high ceiling. Although he has very few years of top flight European experience, his showcase during the World Cup has proven that he is capable of being a very special player. It is no wonder that teams around the world wanted him. The odd thing is not that Real Madrid admired his talents, but that they were willing to pay a transfer fee upwards of £71m to get a player they do not really need. Real Madrid currently has a wealth of attacking talent to draw from. They don’t need James Rodriguez. By bringing him on, Real Madrid will most likely have to sell Isco and Angel Di Maria to fund the transfer due to Financial Fair Play rules. Angel Di Maria was a key reason why Argentina advanced as far as they did in the World Cup and was the MVP of the Champions League final and Isco is one of the most promising young talents that Real Madrid has on their roster. By getting a young attacking talent in James Rodriguez they are getting rid of one of their best players and a young star with a high ceiling. These losses coupled with the potential loss of the more defensively minded Sami Khedira will more likely weaken Real Madrid rather than strengthen it. It could turn out that Real Madrid was better off refraining from the shiny new object and focusing on strengthening the weaker parts of their squad.
Congratulations to Cristiano Ronaldo on winning the 2013 Ballon d’Or over Lionel Messi and Franck Ribery. A strong case could be made for Franck Ribery winning the award, and there will be conspiracy theorists who point to the extension of voting till after the Portugal/Sweden World cup qualifying games as the reason Cristiano pulled off the victory. However, with 69 goals in 59 games, 14 of which were during Champions League play (a new record), Cristiano Ronaldo fully deserves this award. See below for other awards that were given out:
FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year: Nadine Angerer
FIFA Men’s Football Coach of the Year: Jupp Heynckes
FIFA Women’s Football Coach of the Year: Silvia Neid
FIFA Presidential Award: Jacque Rogge
FIFA Fair Play Award: Afghanistan Football Federation
FIFA Puskas Award: Zlatan Ibrahimovic – Sweden v England
Ballon d’Or Prix d’Honneur: Pele
FIFA/FIFPro World XI:
Goalkeeper: Manuel Neuer – Bayern Munich
Defender: Philipp Lahm – Bayern Munich
Defender: Sergio Ramos – Real Madrid
Defender: Thiago Silva – PSG
Defender: Dani Alves – FC Barcelona
Midfielder: Andres Iniesta – FC Barcelona
Midfielder: Xavi Hernandez – FC Barcelona
Midfielder: Franck Ribery – Bayern Munich
Forward: Cristiano Ronaldo – Real Madrd
Forward: Zlatan Ibrahimovic – PSG
Forward: Lionel Messi – FC Barcelona