Euro 2012 – Ukraine and Poland

February 5, 2007

PUSKAS AMONG ALL-TIME GREATS

Filed under: World Cup 2006 — Ivan @ 7:59 am

The News Review:

* AIFF to launch ambitious projects for World Cup, Olympics
* … FORCES: QNB offers trip to 2006 World Cup Football on…
* … v Spain Live, Scotland v Germany Live, Northern Ireland v…
* PUSKAS AMONG ALL-TIME GREATS
* BECKENBAUER BACKS ENGLISH CUP BID: Sporting Life | Six Nations Live,…
* BECKHAM HEADS FOR LA ON £128M DEAL
* ECOWAS salutes Cote d`Ivoire, Ghana, Togo on World Cup feat
* Italian football rocked by new troubles
* Firms positive on 2010 World Cup
* South American football reporter
* … AFTER FINALS: Sporting Life | Cricket Live, England v New…
* ireland.com / Sports / Soccer / Worldcup 2006
* Euro vision contest
* … v Spain Live, Scotland v Germany Live, Northern Ireland v…
* KLINSMANN KEEN TO EXTEND DEAL
* EXCLUSIVE Carr Announces International Retirement
* BRAZIL BEGIN AGAINST CROATIA
* ESPN.com – NFL/PLAYOFFS06 – Pasquarelli: Colts take the bite out of…
* Socceroos to take on giant at ‘G

AIFF to launch ambitious projects for World Cup, Olympics
Outlook – Outlook (subscription) – Feb 4, 2007
“We will launch the Vision 2004 and Project 2006 programmes in January next year aiming to build the combined squad of the u-17 and u-20 teams for the Olympics and World Cup,” AIFF president Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi told reporters here today. Backed by the active support of FIFA and Asian Football Confederation (AFC) and inspired by the signs of resurgence of Indian football, AIFF would launch the projects under the supervision of chief national coach Stephen Constantine, he said. Meanwhile, “FIFA will send a comprehensive team after the recent visit of the fact finding team here. The FIFA team will study various aspects of soccer infrastructure including administration, training and clubs,” Dasmunsi said.

… FORCES: QNB offers trip to 2006 World Cup Football on…
Middle East North Africa Financial… – Feb 5, 2007
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Doha: There is good news for all football-loving QNB MasterCard credit card customers. Qatar National Bank (QNB), the country’s leading bank has launched a fantastic QNB MasterCard Promotion, which gives customers the chance to win four trips to the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany this June. The prize package includes: Business class return air ticket to Germany, World Cup Football Match ticket, hotel accommodation for 2 nights, hotel transfers to and from the match venue. The promotion is open to all QNB Platinum, Gold and Standard MasterCard credit card. Cardholders will receive one e- Raffle ticket for every QR100 spent on their card between now and 30 April 2006. Each e-Raffle ticket will automatically entitle the customer to enter the draw, without any form-filling.

… v Spain Live, Scotland v Germany Live, Northern Ireland v…
Sportinglife.com – Feb 4, 2007
usThe tour had been about unearthing new England talent for the 2006 World Cupbut it was an old hand in Michael Owen who grabbed the final headlines with astunning hat-trick against Colombia in the Giants Stadium. The Real Madrid striker’s previous treble for his country – in the 5-1demolition of Germany in Munich in 2001 – might have carried greatersignificance in pointing England towards the World Cup finals in Japan. But from a personal point of view Owen will view this one, two, three blastwith tremendous satisfaction as it catapulted him to fourth spot in hiscountry’s all-time goalscoring charts. Owen went ahead of his former England partner Alan Shearer, Tom Finney and NatLofthouse and now only Bobby Charlton (49), Gary Lineker (48) and Jimmy Greaves(44) are ahead of him. It was his 24th goal in 47 games under Sven-Goran Eriksson, who will look upona much-maligned tour with massive satisfaction.

PUSKAS AMONG ALL-TIME GREATS
Sportinglife.com – Feb 5, 2007
Here we look at 10 players who graced the game. 1 Pele – named Footballer of the Millennium by FIFA and came second in the Sportsman of the Century award, behind Muhammad Ali. Played in his first World Cup in Sweden at the age of 17. A knee injury almost prevented him playing but ended up scoring six goals, including two in the final (5-2 against Sweden) to help Brazil win their first World Cup. In his last World Cup finals, in Mexico, 1970, he led one of the greatest teams ever assembled to the country’s third World Cup. Scored header in final as Brazil won 4-1. Retired from international football in 1971… His later career was marred by drug scandals. 3 George Best – in terms of natural ability he was closest to Maradona with astonishing skill and strength. Was 18 when he helped Manchester United to the league championship, 19 when he mesmerised Benfica in the Stadium of Light, and still 21 when he was crowned European Footballer of the Year as United won the European Cup. Unlike Pele and Maradona he did not have the chance to parade his skills in World Cup finals as Northern Ireland did not qualify during his international career. Announced his retirement at 26. 4 Johan Cruyff – Holland were the team that gave the world Total Football and Johan Cruyff was the Total Footballer who came to dominate European and world football in the early 1970s. Wonderful balance, deadly speed and breathtaking ball control but his greatest quality was his vision, based on an acute sense of his team-mates’ positions as attacks unfolded.

BECKENBAUER BACKS ENGLISH CUP BID: Sporting Life | Six Nations Live,…
Sportinglife.com – Feb 4, 2007
He told the News of the World: “I am 100 per cent behind any English bid. “England has everything – the best stadiums, the best crowds, the infrastructure. It’s a perfect country to host the World Cup. The competition looks certain to be held in Europe under FIFA’s rotation system which sees the 2010 tournament held in South Africa and the 2014 event going to South America. That narrows the competition significantly, and Beckenbauer feels that England, which hosted the tournament in 1966, is best option despite their unsuccessful bid for last summer’s World Cup. “The only country I see with an obvious chance is England. Who else can bid from Europe? France has already staged it in 1998 and Italy do not have the infrastructure… “The only country I see with an obvious chance is England. Who else can bid from Europe? France has already staged it in 1998 and Italy do not have the infrastructure. “England competed with us [the 2006 German bid] and lost, but they always have confidence. The British government would throw their full support behind any application and FIFA president Sepp Blatter has already been invited to England for initial discussions with Sports Minister Richard Caborn and Gordon Brown. Caborn said: “The FA can count on commitment from the government and that is something we shall be impressing on Sepp Blatter. “We have invited him to Number 11 [Downing Street] and he has agreed to a meeting on February 28. “This will be a great opportunity for a proper dialogue with the main decision-makers in football.

BECKHAM HEADS FOR LA ON £128M DEAL
Sportinglife.com – Feb 4, 2007
October 13: FIFA president Sepp Blatter says he is astonished by Beckham’s admission and “disappointed with his behaviour”. Beckham issues a statement in which he admits he “made a mistake” and apologises to the FA, England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson, his England team-mates and England fans. November 13: Beckham reveals in Sunday newspaper that he will “probably” quit international football after the 2006 World Cup finals. 2005, March 30: Beckham stars and scores as England move closer to a World Cup place with a 2-0 victory over Azerbaijan in a qualifier in Newcastle. April 10 – Inspires Real to a 4-2 win over bitter rivals Barcelona at the Bernabeu Stadium. October 8 – Sent off after receiving his second yellow card in World Cup qualifying match against Austria. November – Captains England for 50th time in friendly against Argentina in Geneva.

ECOWAS salutes Cote d`Ivoire, Ghana, Togo on World Cup feat
AngolaPress – Feb 3, 2007
An ECOWAS statement Wednesday quoted Chambas as saying although
it was regrettable that other footballing nations in the region
could not make it to the World Cup this time, “we are nevertheless
gladdened by the fact that West Africa was able to capture three
out of the five places earmarked for Africa in the finals. ”

He said by this feat, the ECOWAS region had sent “a strong signal”
to the rest of the world that the region abounds in football talent,
waiting to be harnessed. Chambas also congratulated the West African Football Union (WAFU)
for its role in raising the standard of football in the region. In a statement to the Union`s President Jacques Anoma, he reiterated
ECOWAS` continued support to the Union to ensure its success… An ECOWAS statement Wednesday quoted Chambas as saying although
it was regrettable that other footballing nations in the region
could not make it to the World Cup this time, “we are nevertheless
gladdened by the fact that West Africa was able to capture three
out of the five places earmarked for Africa in the finals. ”

He said by this feat, the ECOWAS region had sent “a strong signal”
to the rest of the world that the region abounds in football talent,
waiting to be harnessed. Chambas also congratulated the West African Football Union (WAFU)
for its role in raising the standard of football in the region. In a statement to the Union`s President Jacques Anoma, he reiterated
ECOWAS` continued support to the Union to ensure its success.

Italian football rocked by new troubles
Telegraph.co.uk – Feb 4, 2007
On the terraces, too, the fans are known for revelling in their style, their passion, their knowledge. While England had no option but to introduce all-seater stadiums and CCTV cameras to curb crowd violence, in Italy football was a sport supported by families. Yesterday the football terraces of Italy were empty, the turnstiles silent… Roma were again in trouble after a Serie A match, last Sunday, against Livorno, during which fans carried anti-Semitic and neo-Nazi placards. As a result, the committee ordered Roma to play their next home match at a neutral venue and behind closed doors. “The entire football world is going through a crisis,” said Gianfranco Fini, Italy’s foreign minister. “And it’s because the only thing that counts today is that the show goes on. The talk is about ‘zero tolerance’, yet every Saturday these situations come up. “As Italy’s reputation begins to sink to levels once associated with English football fans, its government is looking to Britain for lessons on how to deal with unruly, violent so-called soccer supporters. Five months ago, it outlawed the throwing of missiles onto the pitch.

Firms positive on 2010 World Cup
BBC News – Feb 5, 2007
The Grant Thornton study said that just under half the firms anticipated gaining in the run up to the event. However only 14% expected to benefit during the World Cup itself, which provided a financial boost to the German economy in summer 2006. And crime in South Africa was a big worry for firms, the study also said. A total of 84% reported that they or their staff had been a victim of crime in the past year.

South American football reporter
BBC News – Feb 5, 2007
But check the record books – in Germany 2006 only Miroslav Klose scored more goals. The need, then, to keep Ronaldo fit will be a challenge for Milan’s backroom staff. And equally interesting is another aspect of his new surroundings. Ronaldo is joining a club where Kaka is king.

… AFTER FINALS: Sporting Life | Cricket Live, England v New…
Sportinglife.com – Feb 5, 2007
The Real Madrid midfielder, 29, is eager to play on at club level for severalmore years, and he is set to follow the lead of club-mates Zinedine Zidane andLuis Figo by quitting the international scene in his early thirties. Beckham told the Daily Star Sunday: “I think the 2006 World Cup in Germany isprobably as far as it will go for me as an England player. Beckham is set to skipper England in Spain on Wednesday, on his home ground ofthe Bernabeu, providing he comes through Sunday night’s Primera Liga matchagainst Albacete unscathed. Having broken two ribs during last month’s match against Wales, he is eager toget back in action.

ireland.com / Sports / Soccer / Worldcup 2006
Irish Times – Feb 5, 2007
This time around, though, Korean objectives are more simplistic. No longer a surprise package, they will, of course, strive to emulate that run but of more immediate concern to players and supporters alike will be securing a first World Cup win on foreign soil in what will be their seventh tournament. South Korea are Asia’s most frequent visitors to the World Cup but in 14 matches prior to 2002 they had not won a single match. With Togo their first opponents in Germany, new boss Dick Advocaat and his players will more than fancy their chances of putting right that wrong. That said, the team’s preparations can only be described as patchy at best. Qualifying was an arduous process which cost two managers, Humberto Coelho and Jo Bonfrere their jobs, although the latter did, admittedly, offer his resignation amid criticism of the team’s lacklustre performances. Football chiefs quickly turned their attention to Advocaat, installing the former Rangers and Holland boss amid a wave of euphoria… That said, the team’s preparations can only be described as patchy at best. Qualifying was an arduous process which cost two managers, Humberto Coelho and Jo Bonfrere their jobs, although the latter did, admittedly, offer his resignation amid criticism of the team’s lacklustre performances. Football chiefs quickly turned their attention to Advocaat, installing the former Rangers and Holland boss amid a wave of euphoria. “We said we would try to do the same as Mr Hiddink did, and of course everybody liked that. Also to the team and to the fans and to the press we have tried to bring a positive story. That?s the reason that they like us,” said Advocaat. An even bigger reason, though, and one heralded in Korean football circles, was Advocaat’s decision to appoint Hong Myung-bo – captain of the 2002 team – to his backroom staff.

Euro vision contest
Sunday Herald – Feb 5, 2007
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Representatives of Europe’s 52 national associations will be called to place their votes by secret ballot, among them SFA chief executive David Taylor. It remains uncertain in which direction Scotland’s vote will be cast, but although the Scottish FA has always had a cosy relationship with Johansson, weighing equally heavily on Taylor’s mind is sure to be Platini’s promise to bring in legislation to limit each member nation to three Champions League entrants, in order to see more actual champions from all across Europe qualifying for the competition. That should directly benefit Scottish football, as should his apparent endorsement of the SFA’s recent motion to extend European Championship finals competitions from 16 to 24 teams. With Platini’s platform also likely to find support from the Eastern bloc, and most members of the G14 likely to be appalled by the developments, there is credence in suggestions of an east-west split. David Will is due to retire his lifelong role as Fifa vice president on Uefa’s all-powerful executive committee formally at the end of May, and has had some preparation for his imminent retirement with a month-long holiday in New Zealand. Ever since the intervention of another Kiwi, Charles Dempsey, in the voting for the 2006 World Cup, such contests have had a reputation for corruption. But Will for one believes the issues at stake are so stark that there is no prospect of the most important job in European football being decided by some orchestrated carve-up, nor for the intervention of controversial Fifa president Sepp Blatter to influence proceedings one way or the other… With Platini’s platform also likely to find support from the Eastern bloc, and most members of the G14 likely to be appalled by the developments, there is credence in suggestions of an east-west split. David Will is due to retire his lifelong role as Fifa vice president on Uefa’s all-powerful executive committee formally at the end of May, and has had some preparation for his imminent retirement with a month-long holiday in New Zealand. Ever since the intervention of another Kiwi, Charles Dempsey, in the voting for the 2006 World Cup, such contests have had a reputation for corruption. But Will for one believes the issues at stake are so stark that there is no prospect of the most important job in European football being decided by some orchestrated carve-up, nor for the intervention of controversial Fifa president Sepp Blatter to influence proceedings one way or the other. “When I left for New Zealand it was too close to call and that was in mid-December,” Will told the Sunday Herald. “In fact when I left, both candidates were declaring that they had a good majority, with around 30 associations behind them so who can tell?
“On some occasions I would say these things could be a carve-up, but genuinely on this occasion I don’t think so. I think each national association will vote very much on their own interests.

… v Spain Live, Scotland v Germany Live, Northern Ireland v…
Sportinglife.com – Feb 5, 2007
It started to go wrong for him in 2002 when Giovanni Trapattoni surprisingly overlooked him for the World Cup squad. He has failed to recapture his former status despite subsequent spells with Valencia, Fiorentina and Torino, whom he has just left although his contract is still owned by Valencia. No-one was surprised when he missed out on selection for the successful 2006 World Cup campaign under Marcello Lippi. The 31-year-old told his new club’s website that he believed Livorno represented the chance to recapture his early promise. “I really want to show myself in a good light and do well here,” Fiore told www.

KLINSMANN KEEN TO EXTEND DEAL
Sportinglife.com – Feb 5, 2007
The aim was to finalise plans for next year, but Klinsmann seems to have madea excellent impression during the negotiations. “We are delighted by his remarks,” commented DFB president Dr TheoZwanziger. “I’ve had the feeling for several weeks that he is enjoying the job and thathe wasn’t just working towards 2006. “It’s good to know that we can plan a longer future with him, but we areaware that it all depends on the success at the World Cup and no decision can bemade before then.

EXCLUSIVE Carr Announces International Retirement
New Castle Football – Feb 3, 2007
But the Newcastle United right-back is urging the Football Association of Ireland to keep faith with manager Brian Kerr and give him a new contract, despite mounting speculation about his position. Carr and his Magpie team-mate Shay Given missed out on next summer’s showpiece event in Germany after only finishing fourth in European Qualifying Group Four. Victory over Switzerland at Dublin’s Lansdowne Road in the final game would have been enough to progress to the November play-offs – but a goalless draw means the dream is over and prompted the 29-year-old to call time on his Republic career. Revealing his decision in an exclusive interview with nufc.

BRAZIL BEGIN AGAINST CROATIA
Sportinglife.com – Feb 5, 2007
usBrazil will kick off their defence of theWorld Cup against Croatia following the draw for the 2006 tournament inLeipzig. The world champions are in Group F, which also contains Australiaand 2002 co-hosts Japan. Hosts Germany will kick off the tournament against Costa Rica, and are joinedin Group A by Poland and Ecuador. The draw threw up a number of difficult looking groups, with the proverbial’group of death’ arguably being Group C, which sees Argentina paired with IvoryCoast, Serbia & Montenegro and Holland. Group E also looks tricky, where Italy play first-time qualifiers Ghana, theUnited States and Czech Republic.

ESPN.com – NFL/PLAYOFFS06 – Pasquarelli: Colts take the bite out of…
ESPN – Feb 4, 2007
“I think we stunned a lot of people around the world tonight,” Saturday said after the Colts’ 29-17 victory in Super Bowl XLI. “And I know we stunned a few people in this here corner of the world. “Indeed, the proud Chicago defense, mauled for 430 yards and 24 first downs and forced to stay on the field for nearly 40 minutes as the Indianapolis running game controlled the tempo throughout, was knocked back on its collective heels. Literally and figuratively. Even after the game, during quiet interviews in the media center and in a locker room where disappointment was the prevailing sentiment, Chicago defenders had problems describing what had just transpired.

Socceroos to take on giant at ‘G
The Age – Feb 3, 2007
Argentina, which boasts international stars such as Barcelonaduo Lionel Messi and Javier Saviola, West Ham’s Carlos Tevez, InterMilan pair Esteban Cambiasso and Hernan Crespo and Villareal’s JuanRoman Riquelme, is ranked No. 3 on FIFA’s world list. Uruguay is fast becoming a traditional rival with Australia, thepair having met twice in four years in play-off matches with aberth at the World Cup finals at stake. In 2001, the Socceroos saw off Uruguay 1-0 at the MCG through apenalty by Melbourne Victory skipper Kevin Muscat but crashed outof the 2002 World Cup when they went down 3-0 in Montevideo. In contrast, the most recent time the two countries met —on November 16, 2005 — probably ranks as the greatest night inAustralian soccer. Having lost the first leg 1-0 in the Uruguayancapital, Australian won 1-0 in Sydney. With the scores locked on aggregate, Mark Schwarzer produced twostunning saves in the penalty shootout before John Aloisi’s goalsent the Socceroos through to Germany 2006.

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