vrijdag 13 juli 2012

Real Madrid legend Guti 'to retire'

Former Real Madrid midfielder Guti is to announce his retirement, according to reports in Spain.

2010 La Liga Real Madrid midfielder Guti, as he explain why he is leaving the club after 25 years service
2010 La Liga Real Madrid midfielder Guti, as he explain why he is leaving the club after 25 years service

The 35-year-old, who last played for Turkish club Besiktas, has been without a club for the past year.
According to Spanish sports daily AS, Guti has decided to hang up his boots after deciding against a move to London club West Ham United.
Guti came up through the youth ranks of his hometown club and made his Real debut in 1995. He went on to make more than 500 appearances for the Spanish giants, winning five La Liga titles and the Champions League three times.
That number of appearances could potentially have broken the 1,000-match mark, but a career ravaged by injury and uneasy relationships with several managers meant he only played around half of the games Real contested during his long time at the club.
The mercurial playmaker ended his 24-year association with Real in 2010 when he joined Besiktas, but he plans to return to Madrid to complete his coaching qualifications at the club's Valdebebas training complex.


Source: Yahoo Sport

woensdag 4 juli 2012

Corinthians é Campeão da Libertadores da América!

É CAMPEÃO! 
Corinthians faz 2 a 0 no Boca Juniors e é o dono da América!

Émerson foi o herói corintiano ao macar os dois gols do título

Uma noite para entrar para a história do Pacaembu. O Corinthians encarava o temido e traiçoeiro Boca Juniors na frente de sua fanática torcida. Um time valente, que jamais perdeu sua marca durante todo um campeonato. Muito menos nessa quarta-feira. Absoluto, o Timão fez 2 a 0 nos argentinos e comemorou o primeiro título da Copa Libertadores em sua centenária história. Émerson Sheik marcou os dois gols da glória alvinegra.

Jogo truncado no início

As duas equipes começaram a partida com muita vontade, se respeitando mutuamente e criando poucas chances. A garra se confundia com violência às vezes, mas nada que provocasse alguma confusão no gramado. O Corinthians pressionava e ocupava o campo do Boca, que se fechava e ainda saía para o jogo. Comandados por Riquelme, os argentinos conseguiam trocar passes com mais objetividade.

O primeiro lance de maior perigo começou com o próprio camisa 10: Mouche tabelou com ele e saía na cara de Cássio, mas a defesa alvinegra se recuperou a tempo. Por volta dos 13 minutos, Alex chutou de média distância e fez Orión trabalhar pela primeira vez, ainda que o chute tenha sido fraco. Emerson fez uma grande jogada pela direita, com direito a janelinha, e quase surpreendeu o adversário. A defesa se recuperou e evitou o pior.

Jogo perde fôlego

O Boca conseguiu desacelerar o ritmo intenso dos brasileiros na metade do primeiro tempo, tocando bola e fazendo o tempo passar. Com a bola, o Corinthians produzia menos, e seguia sem conseguir encontrar espaços na defesa xeneize. Por volta dos 30 minutos, o goleiro Orión sentiu uma dividida anterior e precisou ser substituído por Sosa. Quando testado, o suplente mostrou alguma falta de segurança, ainda que o adversário tivesse chegado pouco.

Alex e Santiago Silva deram chutes sem perigo, o que ilustrava bem o panorama da partida. Nem mesmo os cinco minutos de acréscimo dados por Wilmar Roldán conseguiram se traduzir em algum lance mais substancial.

A história vai sendo feita

Na volta para a segunda etapa os argentinos deram a impressão de estarem mais à vontade, tocando bola no ataque e propondo o jogo pela primeira vez. Mas o jogo seguia tenso. Tão difícil, que foi decidido em um lance de confusão na área. Falta cobrada por Alex no lado direito, Alessandro desviou no primeiro pau e a zaga afastou mal. Danilo tocou de calcanhar, Schiavi furou e a bola sobrou para Emerson. Cara-a-cara com Sosa, o predestinado não perdoou: Corinthians 1 a 0.

O gol sofrido, sem dúvida, tornou as ações mais interessantes. Precisando do gol, o Boca precisou abrir mão da catimba e sair de vez para o jogo, abrindo espaços generosos para o Timão. Alguns contragolpes permitiram que a equipe brasileira chegasse mais próxima do gol, mas ainda sem um lance claro.

Campeão da América!

A partida seguiu tensa, apesar da vantagem do Corinthians. Os argentinos iam com força ao ataque enquanto o Timão se segurava. Mas Emerson, de novo ele, deixou a taça ainda mais próxima do Parque São Jorge. O Boca saiu jogando mal e deixou o Sheik no mano-a-mano com Schiavi. Muito mais rápido, o corintiano passou voando pelo zagueiro, avançou área adentro e deslocou Sosa para fazer o segundo.

A festa tomou conta do Pacaembu já aos 25 minutos. O Timão seguiu fazendo o tempo passar para comemorar. Os Xeneizes, entregues, até tentavam alguma ação na frente, sem sucesso. A noite do dia 4 de julho entrava para a história. O Corinthians é campeão da Copa Libertadores da América pela primeira vez!


Fonte: goal.com

Corinthians is the champion from Libertadores Cup

Corinthians 2-0 Boca Juniors
Emerson's brace wins the Copa Libertadores for Corinthians
Two second half goals from Emerson Sheik wins Corinthians their first ever Copa Libertadores title

Emerson’s two goals after half time were enough for Corinthians to see off Boca Juniors 2-0 at the Pacaembu. 

Corinthians dominated ball possession for the majority of the match, as the Brazilians looked the more adventurous of the two sides and deservedly claimed their first ever Copa Libertadores title at home.

Despite looking more threatening, the Sao Paulo side went into the break tied with their Buenos Aires counterparts. However, following the break, Emerson struck twice to win the game for the Timao. 

The 33-year-old scored a well-taken half volley after a wonderful assist from Danilo, before coolly slotting under substitute goalkeeper, Sebastian Sosa, after collecting a misplaced Rolando Schiavi pass. 

The first half began as a cagey affair, with neither side wanting to make the first mistake. Following a good spell of pressure from Corinthians in the middle of the half, Boca Juniors looked nervy and struggled to maintain possession as Corinthians pressed high up the field. 

On the half hour mark, the visitors suffered a blow to their chances as Agustin Orion’s knee injury forced Julio Falcioni to replace his regular number one with reserve goalkeeper Sebastian Sosa. 

Following the half time interval, Corinthians continued to press, as Emerson and Paulinho began to influence the game and create openings. Just 20 seconds into the second half, Emerson tested Sosa from the right wing as he played a dangerous ball into the 6-yard box, bringing a good save from the substitute stopper. 

However, he did not have to wait long to finally break the deadlock. In the 54th minute, Alex’s freekick from the right flank was flicked-on inside the box by Jorge Henrique towards Danilo. As the ball fell inside the area, Danilo skillfully back-heeled the bouncing ball to Emerson, who took the pass in his stride and struck past Sosa on the half volley to score the ever-important first goal. 

With less than 20 minutes to play, Emerson doubled Corinthians’ advantage. The Qatari international capitalised on Rolando Schiavi’s horrible mistake, collecting his loose pass across the pitch before running one-on-one with Sebastian Sosa and slotting the ball into the far corner to score his 5th goal of the tournament and confirm victory for the Brazilians. 

Corinthians have now qualified for the Fifa Club World Club Championships which will take place in December in Japan.

Alessandro (2nd R) of Brazil's Corinthians holds up the trophy with his teammates after winning their Copa Libertadores second leg final match against Argentina's Boca Juniors in Sao Paulo, July 4, 2012. REUTERS/Junior Lago


Source: goal.com

zondag 1 juli 2012

Euro 2012 : Spain is the Champion!

Spain 4-0 Italy
Records tumble in stunning triumph
Two goals in each half saw the brilliant Spaniards run up a record scoreline in an international tournament final and win their third major trophy in a row


Spain have been crowned Euro 2012 champions after a record-breaking 4-0 victory over Italy in the final at the Olympic Stadium in Kiev on Sunday. 

La Roja's victory, added to their Euro 2008 and World Cup 2010 successes, makes them the first team in history to win three major international tournaments in a row.

David Silva opened the scoring after a quarter of an hour with a header, before a lung-busting run and finish from Jordi Alba put Spain two goals ahead by half-time.

The second half saw chances for both teams, but the match changed on the hour mark after Thiago Motta was strechered off moments after coming off the bench, reducing Italy to 10 men with all three substitutions already used. 

There was no way back for the Azzurri after that, as Spain put on a passing exhibition to drain the life out of Cesare Prandelli's men. With time running out, Fernando Torres and Juan Mata added clinchers in the 84th and 88th minutes respectively to capture the European Championship for La Roja for the third time. 

The milestones continued to fall for Spain, with 13 members of their squad becoming the first players to play in and win two Euro finals, while Torres' late goal gave him the Golden Boot. 
Despite pre-match comments hinting that he would play with a recognised striker, Vicente Del Bosque opted for Cesc Fabregas to lead the line ahead of Alvaro Negredo and Torres in a ‘false nine’ role.

Prandelli also made one change to his starting XI, with Ignazio Abate recovering in time from a hamstring injury to replace Federico Balzaretti at right-back, while Mario Balotelli continued in attack after his match-winning double against Germany.

Spain wasted little time in dictating the tempo, with Italy forced to defend deep against the wave of red shirts and relieve pressure on the counter whenever they could.

Sergio Ramos sent an early header off-target, but the first real chance fell to Xavi, whose one-two with Fabregas ended with a crashing drive that flashed inches over the bar after 10 minutes.

It was an opportunity to mark the initial dominance of Spain, and four minutes later, La Roja would find themselves ahead.

Andres Iniesta was the architect, threading in Fabregas on the overlap down the right, who clipped towards Silva at the near post to glance a header past Gianluigi Buffon.

Italy attempted to hit back straight away, with a 20-yard free-kick from Andrea Pirlo deflected about a foot too high. From the resulting corner, the Juventus midfielder forced Iker Casillas to stretch to tip away his dangerous delivery.

The Azzurri were handed a blow after 21 minutes, as defender Giorgio Chiellini limped off after picking up an injury, with Balzaretti coming on. Moments later, Gerard Pique became the first player booked for a crunching challenge that sent Antonio Cassano flying.

Italy, to their credit, did not allow Spain to walk all over them after the opener, and were able to hold a respectable amount of possession in the face of La Roja’s famed tiki-taka football.

Balzaretti was active since his introduction, with a devilish cross tipped by Casillas away from the head of Balotelli, before finding space to squeeze in a shot from the left side that was easily saved.

Just past the half hour mark, the Spanish captain was called into action again to parry Cassano’s strong drive from 20 yards out.

The Azzurri kept up the pressure in midfield, as viewers were treated to the somewhat unfamiliar sight of Spain playing through the counterattack.

However, La Roja proved that they were just as effective on the breakaway, as they doubled their advantage four minutes before half-time through a move started, and finished by Alba.

The left-back played the ball to Xavi near the halfway line, surged behind the Italian defence, and latched onto the Barcelona midfielder’s pinpoint return pass to slot his side further ahead.

Spain were jubilant, but had Casillas to thank once again for punching clear Riccardo Montolivo’s attempt from outside the area to maintain their two-goal lead at the interval.

Prandelli attempted to respond, hauling off Cassano for Antonio Di Natale and the Udinese striker nearly struck gold with his first touch, heading Abate’s inviting cross narrowly over the bar.

That sparked a period of intense Spain pressure, where Fabregas fired just off target before last-ditch blocks from Buffon and Abate denied Iniesta from close range.

Italy were then lucky to escape a penalty after an apparent handball by Leonardo Bonucci in the box, but referee Pedro Proenca waved play on, to the incredulity of many members of the Spanish team.

Di Natale managed to find space once more in the area, but Casillas was equal to his well-struck attempt before smothering the forward’s chance from the rebound.

Shortly after, Silva and Montolivo made way for Pedro and Motta as both coaches looked to shuffle their packs.

But Motta, barely three minutes after making his appearance, was taken off on a stretcher clutching his hamstring, leaving Italy a man short as Prandelli had already used all three of his substitutions.

The Azzurri were floored by the setback as Spain, a man up and two goals ahead, began to kill the game off with large periods of leisurely possession in the opposition half.

With 16 minutes left, Fabregas was called to the bench as Torres, scorer of the only goal in the 2008 final, came on for the final stretch.

At that point, the only question remaining was whether Spain would score again, and they nearly achieved that feat with a bad miss from Pedro, which was tempered somewhat by the offside flag.

However, Torres would make no such mistake with six minutes remaining, finishing another perfect through pass from Xavi to confirm his status as the first player to score twice in a Euro final, while Xavi became the first to register two final assists.

Mata replaced Iniesta late on as the Spanish parties began in the stands, and they were kicked up a notch two minutes from the end as he stroked home Torres' cutback to make it 4-0.


Viva España!
Ole!



Source: goal.com