In 1962, Josef Masopust won the Ballon d’Or.
Masopust may not even be the most famous player from Czechoslovakia at a time before the country balkanised into what is now the Czech Republic and the Republic of Slovakia. That honour would probably be bestowed upon Antonin Panenka. The Czech midfielder is famously known for his audaciously Read the rest of this entry
It certainly seems so much more indefinite and uncertain. After the first round of matches at the 2015 Copa America, there is no clear indication of who might win this tournament. That certainly points to the depth of talent in South America that makes the gaps in quality between nations that much smaller.
However, patterns are formed over time and there is some sense to be made out of all the chaos. Indeed, if any lesson is to come from the early games of Copa America, it is that those who seemed to be pre-tournament favourites are not Read the rest of this entry
by Dennis Odera
Prior to the World Cup, there was a lot of fuss about two players: Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. Other players like Frank Ribery and Neymar da Silva had stirred and shaken the football waters but these two have caused hurricanes for different reasons.
For the first time in years, there were questions raised as to whether Hurricane Messi was the best player in Read the rest of this entry
Among other things, Jurgen Klopp’s conclusion was clear and simple. “You can’t mark Di Maria,” was what he said after Borussia Dortmund had played Real Madrid during the 2012-2013 Champions League group stages.
Klopp would find a way as his Dortmund later on defeated Madrid in that season’s Champions League semis. But after meeting them again in the knockout rounds of the 2013-2014 Champions League, Klopp had to watch once more as Angel Di Maria ran rings around his defence.
It does help that Di Maria is at Real Madrid — the most expensively assembled team in football history. It also helps that alongside him is Cristiano Ronaldo — one of the greatest footballers of his generation and definitely among the pantheon of the greats. The other player of that calibre is Lionel Messi. He is Di Maria’s teammate at international level.
A rare prestige thus falls upon Di Maria. For club and country, he plays with two of the game’s immortals. As such though, that privilege is in itself Read the rest of this entry
The World Cup will either remain in South America or leave with a European nation
The prestigious trophy will remain in either of the two above regions. The other regions are not up to standard and do not pose enough competition. Africa and Asia are performing dismally. North and Central America may Read the rest of this entry