The life and times of Serge Aurier are anything but straightforward. Last month, the Ivory Coast and Paris Saint-Germain defender was fined and sentenced to two months in prison for assaulting a police officer.
Men's World Cup
Think about this number: 8.1 seconds. Chances are, your car goes zero to 60 slower than that, but that's how long it took Christian Benteke, who is not renowned for his speed, to score against Gibraltar.
Benteke's goal is the fastest goal in World Cup qualifying history, scored against a team that features just a few true professional soccer players. It just came together perfectly, although if you had asked us who would score the fastest goal in World Cup qualifying history, we would not have picked Christian Benteke. Good for him.
The England National Team's Wayne Rooney era appears to be drawing to a close after interim manager Gareth Southgate announced the captain would be dropped against Slovenia.
After a performance from Rooney against Malta that involved a lot of standing around and not very much doing things, Southgate must have felt he had no choice in the matter, even though Sam Allardyce and Roy Hodgson had been cowed into keeping Rooney in their respective England teams. Southgate appears to have followed the example set by Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho in dropping the player.
Cristiano Ronaldo added to his four-goal tally against Andorra on Friday by scoring a belter against the Faroe Islands. Portugal finished their October World Cup qualifiers by defeating their opponents by a combined scoreline of 12-0.
For Ronaldo, he’s now scored 40 goals in 43 games for club in country during 2016. He’s almost a certainty to win the FIFA WOrld Player of the Year following his triumph with Real Madrid in the Champions League and Portugal at Euro 2016.
James Rodriguez has been the subject of death threats on Twitter as revealed by his mother. The Colombian international received a photo of a box filled with ammunition and a gun while a couple of other weapons are also visible in frame.
“Do you want to see how James would look dead?” said the message from the anonymous user. “I’m coming to your house now, say goodbye to all your loves ones.”
The pre-match team photo is so innocuous and brief that it hardly even registers when watching it take place. Like players holding the hands of little child mascots when entering the field, it's just one of those things that happens. Don't question it, don't even think about it, let's just get it over with.
The starting XI gets in two balanced rows, the players in the back drape their arms over one another and everyone stares blankly into the camera for a moment. What’s the point of the exercise? Where does the photo end up? Who’s getting any joy from this photo op?
After three consecutive major final losses, Argentina decided to rebuild their squad. Edgardo Bauza became their third coach in just over two years, and everybody is hoping for a fresh start after their heart breaking loss to Chile in the Copa America Centenario.
Neymar’s match against Bolivia contained parts of the good, the bad and the ugly. The good was a goal and two assists which helped the Selecao to a 5—0 rout of Bolivia in Natal, Brazil.
The bad was a 36th-minute yellow card that means he’s suspended for Brazil’s October 11th qualifier away to Venezuela. However, given that Venezuela currently dwell at the bottom of the CONMEBOL WCQ table with two points from nine matches, Neymar’s absence shouldn’t be a factor.
CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying grew in legend with another improbable incident during Thursday’s match between Ecuador and Chile.
With Ecuador holding a 3-0 advantage over Chile at the Estadio Olimpico Atahualpa in Quito, Ecuardorian international Enner Valencia, who plays his club football for Everton in the Premier League, allegedly faked an injury to evade police capture in the 82nd minute.
Throughout the tenure of Jurgen Klinsmann as the head coach of the U.S. Men’s National Team, American soccer fans have watched the team take steps forward, as they did by advancing out of the group of death at the 2014 World Cup, only to also watch them take steps back, as they did by losing in the semifinals of the 2015 Gold Cup.