Since the 2014 World Cup, Karim Benzema’s output for Real Madrid in La Liga and Champions League matches reads like this: 114 matches played, 64 goals scored, 23 goals assisted. With a record of over a goal per every two matches, the 29-year-old French forward is one of the most feared in Europe.
Juan Carlos Osorio has announced the preliminary 32-player squad, which will later be reduced to 23, that will battle for Mexico throughout June in two crucial World Cup qualifiers, including one against the United States at the Azteca, and the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup in Russia.
This group of predominantly foreign-based players will not receive any break following the end of their European club seasons as Mexico will face Croatia in Los Angeles on May 27 and Ireland in New Jersey on June 1 in friendly matches.
India’s National Team has never played in a World Cup, but there’s a decent chance that will change when the tournament includes 48 teams in 2026. The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) currently sends four teams to the World Cup, and its fifth place team competes in a playoff with the fourth place team from CONCACAF.
When the field expands, eight teams from the AFC will directly qualify. The World Cup’s growth, coupled with the national team’s improvements, provide sufficient reasons to be optimistic about the future of Indian soccer.
Lionel Messi's four-match ban for allegedly insulting a referee has been overturned by FIFA. Messi sat out one match, a 2-0 loss to Bolivia in La Paz, before the FIFA appeals committee made its ruling.
This is good news for Argentina, for whom qualifying for the 2018 World Cup in Russia is still up in the air. La Albiceleste sitting fifth, in the play-off spot, one point behind Chile and Uruguay and two points ahead of Ecuador. They cannot afford any slip-ups, which are much more plentiful when Lionel Messi is not in the lineup.
For those who religiously follow and catalogue all of the endless nonsense I churn out (you’re terrifying), you’ll remember that back in February (Jesus, what have I done these last two months) I got really into the CONCACAF Beach Soccer Championship. It was really cold and I was really sad so I turned to the carnival of sand, merriment and bangers that is beach soccer for respite. Plus it was all streamed on Facebook for free.
When Argentine Chicago Fire forward Luis (Lucho) Solignac left his phone unlocked, his new teammate Bastian Schweinsteiger knew just what to do with it: remind the Argentine, and his followers, who won the World Cup in 2014.
It was Germany. Germany won the World Cup in 2014. Bastian Schweinsteiger played in that game. Lucho Solignac didn't but you can imagine he had a rooting interest just the same.