As the third season of Indian Super League (ISL) is going to be launched from Saturday, all the team owners met on a workshop to discuss the future of Indian football. The workshop, which was attended by all the owners of the eight teams and the host broadcaster Star Sports and organized at Mumbai, was addressed by Neeta Ambani. Representatives of the each of the eight team, Dr Anil Sharma (Delhi Dynamos FC), Akshay Tandon (FC Goa), Kapil Wadhawan (FC Pune City), Ranbir Kapoor (Mumbai City FC), Abhishek Bachchan (Chennaiyin FC), John Abraham (NorthEast United FC), Sanjiv Goenka (Atlético de Kolkata), Sanjay Gupta (Star Sports) and N Prasad (Kerala Blasters FC), were present in the workshop. Developing Indian football through Reliance Foundation’s Young Champs Program and its Youth Sports Initiative, was also discussed in the meeting. Other topics such as ISL’s vision, goals, organization with ethics and fair play were also discussed. The representatives expressed their plant to develop football in their region and also discussed the ways to facilitate the growth of the game in the country. In the opening match of ISL on Saturday, NorthEast United FC will be playing against Kerala Blasters FC at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium in Guwahati. By Prajakt K.
Ace Argentenian footballer Lionel Messi announced his retirement from international football following Argentina’s loss to Chile in Copa America final. Messi, a five times World Player of the Year, broke down after the loss. Soon after, Messi made the announcement that has shocked millions, leaving them heartbroken. "He's like a PlayStation," Arsene Wenger once said of Messi after the Barcelona superstar scored four goals against Arsenal in a 2010 Champions League tie. Football pundit Jonathan Liew, writing for the Telegraph, during a debate over the greatest of all time, said of Messi, "even at half-throttle, he was still the most amazing sight to watch. His legs move like pistons. His shoulders occasionally appear to be moving in different directions at once. He spots passes that don't exist until he's played them. There may have been better players in the past, although personally, I doubt it, but none who has been quite as exhilaratingly pleasurable to watch." The 29-year-old Messi said, "I tried my hardest. It's been four finals, and I was not able to win. I tried everything possible. It hurts me more than anyone, but it is evident that this is not for me. I want more than anyone to win a title with the national team, but unfortunately, it did not happen." By Premji
Amidst the mesmerizing presence of the football God Pele, home side Atletico de Kolkata (ATK) went to the top of the table with a 2-1 win over Kerala Blasters. It was the first home fixture for the defending champions while more than 60,000 fans had turned up at the Salt Lake Stadium and cheered for their home team. Brushing aside the 'handicap' of missing a number of key players, defending champions pulled off all odds, with a defying 2-1 win over last year's finalists Kerala Blasters. Arata Izumi and Javi Lara scored on either side of half-time to help Atletico de Kolkata to get off to a perfect start. Kerala Blasters did pull one back through Chris Dagnall in the 81st minute. Atletico took full advantage of the positioning of both Kerala full-backs as they stretched the three-man Yellow Army defense and opened up pockets of space in danger areas. Habas effected a major overhaul in the defense with Spaniard Juan Calatayud coming under the bar for the first time and Josemi returning to the heart of backline, while N Mohanraj replaced Tiri as left-back. Introduction of Nadong Bhutia on the right, in place of the suspended Baljit Sahni, gave the home team's attack a fresh impetus. Inclusion of Victor Pulga at halftime helped Kerala to regain the control in midfield, as Mehtab and Shankar pushed forward to join the two English strikers in attack. Watt and Dagnall, isolated and lacking in the first half, looked extremely lively in the second as they combined to bypass the compact Atletico defense. Kerala Blasters Team: Ramandeep Singh, Peter Ramage, Carlos Marchena (Marquee), Cavin Lobo, João Coimbra, Chris Dagnall, Sanchez Watt, Ishfaq Ahmed, Shankar Sampingiraj, C.K. Vineeth, Mehtab Hossain, Sandesh Jhingan, Gurwinder Singh, Manandeep Singh, Mohammed Rafi, Bruno Perone, Saumik Dey, Marcus Williams, Stephen Bywater, Peter Carvalho, Pulga, Josue, Shilton Paul, Rahul Bheke, Sandip Nandy. Atletico de Kolkata Team: Juan Calatayud, Javi Lara, Nallappan Mohanraj, Tiri, Arnab Mondal, Baljit Sahni, Iain Hume, Jaime Gavilán, Hélder Postiga, Borja, Valdo, Denzil Franco, Amrinder Singh, Nadong Bhutia, Clifford Miranda, Jewel Raja, Josemi (Captain), Sushil Kumar Singh, Syed Rahim Nabi, Rino Anto, Arata Izumi, Sameehg Doutie, Ofentse Nato, Augustin Fernandes, Lalchhawnkima, Kunzang Bhutia By Premji
The Salt Lake Stadium is set to come alive as the legendary Pele graces the match between Atletico de Kolkata host Kerala Blasters in their first home game of the season, with his presence as both sides look to continue their undefeated runs. "It is fantastic that the great Pele will be coming to watch the match. This is a brilliant idea," ATK coach Antonio Lopez Habas said. "I will give no excuses. I have 18 fit players for the game and I have confidence in them," said the ATK coach. Kerala Blasters head coach Peter Taylor is also excited and said,. "Everybody would be inspired by Pele watching the game.” "I played against him for 20 minutes. My proudest moment. I never managed to take the ball off him." It was in 1976 that Taylor, representing England, played against Pele, who was part of the Team America XI. Pele was with New York Cosmos at that time. Boosted by the presence of the legendary Pele, defending champions Atletico de Kolkata will look to open their home campaign on a winning note when they face Kerala Blasters FC. "We're not disappointed. We have kept a clean sheet and that is something we can build on. We could have played better, but Mumbai City came out very determined and played tough. We've come away with a good point," Ramage said as both ATK and KBFC are same on points tally with an identical one win, one draw from two matches. Kerala Blasters Team: Ramandeep Singh, Peter Ramage, Carlos Marchena (Marquee), Cavin Lobo, João Coimbra, Chris Dagnall, Sanchez Watt, Ishfaq Ahmed, Shankar Sampingiraj, C.K. Vineeth, Mehtab Hossain, Sandesh Jhingan, Gurwinder Singh, Manandeep Singh, Mohammed Rafi, Bruno Perone, Saumik Dey, Marcus Williams, Stephen Bywater, Peter Carvalho, Pulga, Josue, Shilton Paul, Rahul Bheke, Sandip Nandy. Atletico de Kolkata Team: Juan Calatayud, Javi Lara, Nallappan Mohanraj, Tiri, Arnab Mondal, Baljit Sahni, Iain Hume, Jaime Gavilán, Hélder Postiga, Borja, Valdo, Denzil Franco, Amrinder Singh, Nadong Bhutia, Clifford Miranda, Jewel Raja, Josemi (Captain), Sushil Kumar Singh, Syed Rahim Nabi, Rino Anto, Arata Izumi, Sameehg Doutie, Ofentse Nato, Augustin Fernandes, Lalchhawnkima, Kunzang Bhutia By Premji
The second edition of the Indian Super League saw its first red card, a seven minute hold-up, a head-butt and two Indians on the score sheet at either end as FC Goa – Atletico de Kolkata match ended with 1-1 at the Nehru Stadium in Fatorda. Both teams now have three points from two games with a win and a draw. In a tie where tempers were high and the game rough, the defending champions, Atletico de Kolkata, defended doggedly with 10 men. Atletico de Kolkata was struck in the 13th minute through a spectacular Arata Izumi volley, it was Keenan Almeida’s cracking right footer which has restored the parity for Zico’s men in the 81st minute in an ill-tempered match. Atletico de Kolkata’s Baljit Sahni was shown the first red-card of the season after head butting opposition defender Gregory Arnolin, which has brought the memories of the last season to the fore, when the latter was involved in an identical incident with the then Atletico de Kolkata striker Fikru Teferra. A total of 10 yellow cards and one red were handed out over the course of the game. Atletico de Kolkata Team: Juan Calatayud, Javi Lara, Nallappan Mohanraj, Tiri, Arnab Mondal, Baljit Sahni, Iain Hume, Jaime Gavilán, Hélder Postiga, Borja, Valdo, Denzil Franco, Amrinder Singh, Nadong Bhutia, Clifford Miranda, Jewel Raja, Josemi (Captain), Sushil Kumar Singh, Syed Rahim Nabi, Rino Anto, Arata Izumi, Sameehg Doutie, Ofentse Nato, Augustin Fernandes, Lalchhawnkima,Kunzang Bhutia FC Goa Team: Victor Simoes, Elinton Andrade, Reinaldo, Lucio, Leonardo da Silva Moura, Jonatan Lucca, Luciano Sabrosa, Gregory Arnolin, Jofre Mateu, Darryl Duffy, Laxmikant Kattimani, Debabrata Roy, Narayan Das, Bikramjit Singh, Raju Gaikwad, Denson Devadas, Joaquim Abranches, Chinadorai Sabeeth, Mandar Rao Desai, Romeo Fernandes, Pronay Halder, Victorino Fernandes, Thongkhosiem Haokip, Nicolau Colaco, Keenan Almeida, Luis Barreto By Premji
Kerala Blasters FC got off to a rollicking start, recording a convincing 3-1 win over NorthEast United FC in the Indian Super League (ISL) season 2 match in Kochi on Tuesday. After a goal-less first half, Kerala Blasters, with their superstar co-owner Sachin Tendulkar cheering them from the stands, opened the scoring in the 49th minute through Josu. The lead was doubled by the former India striker Mohammad Rafi headed one in the 68th minute. Sanchez Watt consolidated the hosts' position with another goal in the 72nd minute. Josu, a Barcelona youth product, unleashed a powerful left-footer to send the ball to the top corner of the net after CK Vineeth's attempted overhead kick fell on his way. Following a long throw-in into the box by Rahul Bheke, Carvalho's flick was headed in by Rafi at the far post. Sanchez Watt, who is a product of the Arsenal youth academy, took the ball beautifully after being fed by Bywater and Rafi. Watt was onside and with no defender marking him, it was easy for him to shoot the ball between goalkeeper Rehenesh's feet. The introduction of Sanchez Watt in the place of Chris Dagnall in the second half has changed the complexion of the game and it was Josue Currais Prieto who broke the deadlock three minutes after the break. Kerala Blasters new head coach Peter Taylor had promised that more goals from his side in the second season of Indian Super League and his players has not disappointed the Kerala, football lovers, in their ISL opening against North East United FC at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium on Tuesday night. After a barren first half, Blasters sunk their rivals with three quick goals to register an emphatic 3-1 win to get their season off to a fabulous start. Kerala Blasters Team: Ramandeep Singh, Peter Ramage, Carlos Marchena (Marquee), Cavin Lobo, João Coimbra, Chris Dagnall, Sanchez Watt, Ishfaq Ahmed, Shankar Sampingiraj, C.K. Vineeth, Mehtab Hossain, Sandesh Jhingan, Gurwinder Singh, Manandeep Singh, Mohammed Rafi, Bruno Perone, Saumik Dey, Marcus Williams, Stephen Bywater, Peter Carvalho, Pulga, Josue, Shilton Paul, Rahul Bheke, Sandip Nandy. NorthEast United FC Team: Gennaro Bracigliano, Aiborlang Khongjee, Marlangki Suting, Zohmingliana Ralte, Cédric Hengbart, Yumnam Raju, Sanju Pradhan, Bruno, Holicharan Narzary, Silas, Seityasen Singh, Reagan Singh, Rehenesh TP, Boithang Haokip, Miguel Garcia, Alen Deory, Kondwani Mtonga, Nicolás Vélez, Simão Sabrosa, Robin Gurung, Siam Hanghal, Francis Dadzie, Boubacar Sanogo, Lalthuammawia Ralte, Diomansy Kamara. By Premji
After IPL, India has seen ISL or Indian Super League for Football became a crowd puller to its core. The first season saw that the people who loves football has received it with both hands. Now for the second season, auction of the players is being done. Indian national football captain Sunil Chhetri was the biggest earner at the inaugural Indian Super League (ISL) auction in Mumbai, who is sold to Mumbai City FC for Rs 1.20 crore. Central midfielder Eugeneson Lyngdoh, had become the ISL's first millionaire when he was purchased by Pune FC for 1.5 crore from a base price of Rs 27 Lakh. These two names, were the only players to attract bids in excess of a crore. Rino Anto, is sold to defending ISL champions Atletico de Kolkata for Rs 90 lakh, who was India’s defender, from a starting price of just 17 lakh. Chhetri, 30, is a four-time AIFF Player of the Year and India's leading goal scorer, who had a base price of Rs 80 lakh. Pune midfielder Anas Edathodika went to Delhi Dynamos FC for Rs 41 lakh, Jackichand Singh went to Pune FC for 45 lakh from a base price of 20 lakh and Thoi Singh for 86 lakh to Chennaiyin FC. Atletico de Kolkata and North East United went hard for Japanese born Pune midfielder Arata Izumi, who was sold to the defending champions for 68 lakh, from his base price of 40 lakh. "We really wanted him, so we're very happy," said a team owner. Salgaocar goalkeeper Karanjit Singh was purchased for his base price of 60 lakh - the second highest after Chhetri - by Chennaiyin FC. The last player sold at the auction was Seityasen Singh, a winger for Royal Wahingdoh, for 56 lakh to North East United. By Premji
Sepp Blatter was once again elected as FIFA President on Friday in Zurich. This was his fifth term and he achieved the feat despite the demands for his resignation from UEFA President Michel Platini and others. Platini commented that UEFA (Union of European Football Associations) could pull out of FIFA and withdraw from the World Cup if Blatter was re-elected. FIFA's big-money sponsors have also called for change within FIFA. Visa also warned Thursday that it could pull out of its contract, which is worth at least $25 million a year through 2022. The 39-year-old Prince Ali watched the scandal from a bird’s viewpoint as he was a FIFA vice president for the past four years, yet he tasted defeat. In 2011, Blatter was re-elected unanimously after his Qatari opponent was removed from the presidential ballot following a bribery scandal. Blatter then promised to fight against corruption and support key investigations of the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bidding contests. FIFA’s own judicial bodies conducted those investigated in-house. The latest probes brought FIFA under scanner with federal law enforcement agencies spying more into soccer’s affairs. Swiss Police launched raids on FIFA's favorite luxury downtown Zurich hotel and its own headquarters early this week. As per the requests of federal prosecutors who are investigating the chain fraud, money-laundering and investigating bribery, seven men including Senior FIFA officials were arrested. The 2018 and 2022 World Cups — which are going to be held at Russia and Qatar, respectively — are in the spotlight of a Swiss federal probe and are suspicious for financial wrongdoing.
Real Madrid Cristiano Ronaldo is the only athlete to reach 100 million fans in Facebook, where he has pitched with 18 goals in the 14 games this season. Cristiano Ronaldo, the two-time FIFA player of the year has made 13 goals in just six La Liga games, where he has dominated on a social media Facebook and became the first athlete to reach 100 million Facebook likes. Cristiano Ronaldo is the only person to achieve the feet, musicians Eminem (96 million) and Rihanna (90 million) are the next two poised to hit nine figures on Facebook. Soccer star Ronaldo has posted a video on his Facebook page thanking his fans for the great milestone. Lionel Messi holds second place on the Facebook fan likes among athletes with 74 million, where Argentinean star ranks ninth overall among all people. Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have the most Facebook fans of any sports teams with 77 million (Barcelona) and 75 million (Real Madrid). Meanwhile, the leading active American athlete LeBron James grabs around 22 million Facebook likes and former NBA legend Michael Jordan with 27 million.
Barcelona three leading players Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta and Thomas Vermaelen have been join along with teammates, where three players have return back to training on Monday 9th September. The trio have been working hard on fitness to come back into the team after struggling with minor injuries. Barcelona has released a statement on their website that the training session is still missing several players on international duty, included Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta and Thomas Vermaelen, who have been finished part of the training with the group. Barcelona Team Officials have not announced any details over the three players will be fit for the Saturday La Liga game at home to Athletic Bilbao.27=year-old Lionel Messi has sustained an adductor muscle injury, Iniesta was sidelined due to knee problem and Vermaelen, a new signing from Arsenal, where he has been suffering from a hamstring strain. Barcelona hopes to improve on last season's second-place finish to Atletico Madrid, and this is the only side to have won their opening two La Liga games.
Barcelona star Neymar is going to return back into the squad says Bayern Munich defender Dante, where Brazilian star has joined in the team from Santos twelve months ago, but his first season in Europe struggled with several injuries. 22-year-old Neymar was recognized as key player for Brazil during the 2014 FIFA World Cup, until injury ruled him out of the tournament, where host Brazil lost to 7-1 to champions Germany in the semi-finals and 3-0 to Netherlands in the third-place playoff. Neymar has been working hard in training and going to get back even better says Dante. He added Neymar has showed great performance for Brazil in the past two seasons. Neymar has return back into the team on Thursday morning and he was able to train normally for the first time since spraining ankle injury in training on 21st August. Meanwhile, Vermaelen and Ter Stegen also trained separately from a session that featured Samper, Sandro and Munir from the B team.
Barcelona have finished signing of 24-year-old Brazilian right-back Douglas Pereira from Sao Paulo for five years contract which could rise to £4.4m.Douglas Pereira said this is the best achievement for him and want to learn, because the game here is different to how we play in Brazil. Douglas Pereira has completed signing a five-year contract for £4.4 million, where he could pay an additional €1.5m (£1.2m) in add-ons based on the number of games he plays for the Catalan club. Barcelona have agreed the deal on Wednesday evening and Douglas completed the transfer on Friday after passing a medical test.Douglas Pereira has begin his career in Brazil with Goias, after making 64 appearances and scoring five goals in two years with the first team, where he had moved to Sao Paulo in 2012 where he made 69 appearances and scored four goals in two years. FC Barcelona's new Brazilian defender Douglas Pereira dos Santos had poses with Barcelona's sports director Andoni Zubizarreta and Barcelona's vice-president Jordi Mestre during his press conference at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona.