I have a theory as to one reason (of many) the England National Team tends to underperform in major tournaments: the players all play in the same league. Every England international plays in the Premier League. One might argue this breeds familiarity and is therefore good for the national team, but I think it leads to a lack of stylistic variety in the team and makes the payer pool stagnant. It's basically like inbreeding, is what I'm saying.
Cristiano Ronaldo is having a no-good, very bad time in La Liga this season, and we have the stats to prove it. Never mind the one goal, this goes far deeper than that.
The speculation began even before Sweden beat Italy to qualify for the 2018 World Cup and once that final whistle blew everyone wanted to know what was going through the mind of one Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
People have started to write the obituaries for Italian football.
Italy is a young nation. It has old cities, even older cultures. But, as a country, it was only unified in 1861. That’s only slightly older than the form of codified football we know today. It should be no surprise that Italy has traditionally been so close to football: it’s simply a question of historical proximity.
Christian Pulisic was not included in the U.S. Men's National Team roster for their friendly against Portugal next Tuesday. This is cause for debate, so let's have at it.
Bobby Wood spent an anonymous 56 minutes on the pitch last weekend in Hamburg’s 2-1 defeat to Hertha Berlin, consigning the club to 16th in the 18-team Bundesliga and opening Wood to fierce criticism from manager Markus Gisdol. Wood has started nine league matches for Hamburg this term, but he’s only managed a single goal. That was back in August.
This should have been a fun article to write. This should have been an article in which Lazio were praised and evangelized; the remarkable rehabilitation of striker Ciro Immobile after years in the wilderness; the astounding performance of manager Simone Inzaghi, only appointed after Marcelo Biesla refused to show up for work on his first day; the way in which the entire team has blown away opposition this year, propelling themselves all the way up the table and sitting, right now, level with Juventus. It should have been a fantastically positive article.
But it’s not.
Several members of the Emerald City Sounders supporters group were reportedly removed from B.C. place during Sunday's Whitecaps-Sounders playoff game for allegedly displaying a Sounders banner that contained a political statement.
We got kicked out of BC Place for this banner because MLS told them to do it. pic.twitter.com/kEGAZaXVYz— Tom Biro (@tombiro) October 30, 2017
Atlanta United has set the standard for MLS expansion teams this year, from breaking the MLS attendance record to becoming the fourth expansion team to make the playoffs in its inaugural season. Now that the playoffs are here, Atlanta has a legitimate chance to take home the MLS Cup.