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Has the FIFA Ballon d’Or lost its prestige?

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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

BATTLE ROYAL AS DORTMUND BATTLE REAL

They meet again *** image courtesy of zimbio ***

They meet again *** image courtesy of zimbio ***

[A Champions League semi-final preview of Borussia Dortmund vs Real Madrid. For Bayern vs Barcelona, click here]

When Santiago Bernabeu became President of Real Madrid, this was exactly what he envisioned. As Madrid went on to win the first five European Cups from 1956 to 1960, it was done with a galaxy of stars who invoked fear as they went about conquering Europe.

As such, it defined what a club from Madrid would eventually come to be associated with. So, nothing at the moment is bigger at Real Madrid than the fact that finally, the 10 year wait for a European Cup seems likely to be over.

It is so big it papers over the cracks of the civil war that has existed Read the rest of this entry

MANCHESTER UNITED SEE RED IN THE CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

Manchester United defeated ** image courtesy of zimbio **

Manchester United defeated ** image courtesy of zimbio **

Great spectacles are defined by compilations of individual isolated moments.

That was the case as Manchester United welcomed Real Madrid for the second leg of a Round of 16 Champions League tie. Ultimately, a night of stars will be remembered for the various moments of bright lights and sporadic darkness.

As is the norm, the game had started long before the game had started. Not lost on anyone was the fact that the first leg had ended 1-1 at the Bernabeu, Danny Welbeck’s opener handing the Red Devils a valuable away goal. Also, Read the rest of this entry

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