Government v. Airline beef causes havoc for Venezuelan soccer team

Filed under: Peru, Venezuela

4 day road trip

from WSJ

When this city’s professional soccer club traveled to a key match in Peru, its tough rival wasn’t the only challenge. The team also had to endure an arduous four-day journey, including four connecting flights, a layover in neighboring Colombia and a jarring, cross-border bus ride.

The 20-man team was a victim of the long-simmering dispute between international airlines and the leftist administration of President Nicolas Maduro. With the cash-strapped government holding back on releasing $3.8 billion in airline-ticket revenue because of strict currency controls, carriers have slashed service to Venezuela by half since January, adding another layer of frustration to daily life here.

Much more over at the Wall Street Journal: Trapped in Venezuela

* This is a great story…. I’m one of those dudes that does not like driving. I’m ok with traveling a little bit, but after the flight gets in that 2 hour range, I start to get antsy. Like, really antsy. I need scotch and food and stuff like that.

Now, imaging if you are planning on playing a match, in another country, and it takes you four days to get there. How crazy would that be. Especially if it was something that could kind of be avoided.

Anyways, head over to the article on WSJ, its a good read.

Added on August 28th, 2014 by

Cristiano Ronaldo Named 2013/14 UEFA Best Player In Europe

Filed under: EPL News, Highlights, Videos, and Scores | English Premier League Highlights, La Liga News, Highlights, Videos, and Scores | Spanish La Liga, Soccer News

~~  Can’t argue the statistical season and impact CRon7 had during the 2013/14 season.

The Portugal captain received the 2013/14 accolade at the Grimaldi Forum in Monaco from UEFA President Michel Platini. Ronaldo, among the final nominees for the fourth successive year, finished ahead of FC Bayern München’s Arjen Robben and Manuel Neuer in a live vote by a panel of 54 journalists who had to select, via an electronic system, their favourite from a three-man shortlist announced a fortnight ago.

Ronaldo, speaking during a ceremony that followed the UEFA Champions League group stage draw, said: “I’m really happy so I must say thanks to my team-mates because without the team, individual awards would not be possible. I don’t have this trophy in my museum, so my brother is going to put it there.”

The 29-year-old – who follows Franck Ribéry (2012/13), Andrés Iniesta (2011/12) and Lionel Messi (2010/11) as a recipient of the accolade – broke the record for goals, 17, by a player in a UEFA Champions League campaign last term as Madrid claimed their long-awaited tenth European title.

“It was amazing, something that Madrid had looked to do for many years. As Madrid players we feel as though you have to win the Champions League. It was a fantastic season – we won the Champions League, the Spanish Cup and the [UEFA] Super Cup.”

Added on August 28th, 2014 by

Video :: Inspired By – Danny O’Rourke

Filed under: Coaches, Culture & Lifestyle, MLS News, Highlights, Videos, and Scores | Major League Soccer Highlights, Portland Timbers, Videos

We caught up with Portland Timbers defender Danny O’Rourke recently to ask him what coach most inspired him and influenced him both on and off the field. He shared some really great stories with us about his time at the University of Indiana and the man he still refers to affectionately as “Coach Yeagley.”

That’s some serious respect right there.

Each of the player’s we have talked to over the last month has shared some really great stories about coaches in their lives and it further illustrates just how important a coach can be in the development of the player (at any level), but also the players every day life outside the game. I’ll stop writing now and leave it to Danny. Take it away brother.

#BelieveSoccerMovie in theaters September 12th.

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Added on August 28th, 2014 by

22 Players Named For Czech Republic vs USMNT Friendly In Prague

Filed under: EPL News, Highlights, Videos, and Scores | English Premier League Highlights, MLS News, Highlights, Videos, and Scores | Major League Soccer Highlights, Soccer News

~~ A couple of big surprises on this roster as Jurgen Klinsmann goes young with this roster, namely Stanford’s Jordan Morris who is the first college player to be named to the USMNT roster since Ante Razov (I think…..)….

U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has called 22 players into camp for the upcoming friendly against the Czech Republic on Sept. 3 in Prague, the USA’s first game of the 2018 FIFA World Cup cycle. Kickoff for the first meeting between the teams on Czech soil is set for 2:15 p.m. ET, and the match will be broadcast live on NBC Sports Network and UniMas. Fans can also follow on Twitter @ussoccer.

“We look at this as the start of our project towards Russia in 2018, and in this first step we get to look at many of our talented young players based in Europe,” said Klinsmann. “We have some great youngsters coming through the ranks that are starting to break through with their clubs teams and are ready to challenge for spots on the Senior Team, and even most of our World Cup veterans from Brazil on this roster will be coming into the prime of their careers in the next four years, so this is an exciting opportunity.”

Klinsmann Gives Youth Opportunity for U.S. MNT Trip to Czech Republic
The match is the first in the new cycle, and Klinsmann is taking the opportunity to look at young talent. Of the 22 players coming to Prague, 15 are age 24 or younger. There are 11 players with 10 caps or less, and six looking to make their debut for the Senior National Team.

A total of 10 players from the USA’s run to the Round of 16 at the 2014 FIFA World Cup are on the roster. Fabian Johnson started all four matches in Brazil, while Alejandro Bedoya appeared in every game and started three. Hertha Berlin defender John Brooks scored the game-winning goal against Ghana, and 19-year-old Julian Green pulled the U.S. within one goal of Belgium when he scored in the second extra time of the 2-1 defeat.

U.S. ROSTER BY POSITION – Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (3) : Cody Cropper (Southampton), Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS (7) : John Brooks (Hertha Berlin), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Timmy Chandler (Eintracht Frankfurt), Greg Garza (Club Tijuana), Fabian Johnson (Borussia Mönchengladbach), Michael Orozco (Puebla), Tim Ream (Bolton)
MIDFIELDERS (7) : Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Mix Diskerud (Rosenborg), Julian Green (Bayern Munich), Emerson Hyndman (Fulham), Alfredo Morales (Ingolstadt), Brek Shea (Stoke City)
FORWARDS (5) : Jozy Altidore (Sunderland), Joe Gyau (Borussia Dortmund II), Jordan Morris (Stanford), Rubio Rubin (Utrecht), Bobby Wood (1860 Munich)

Added on August 28th, 2014 by

Soccer in America – A Photographic Journey

Filed under: Culture & Lifestyle, Los Angeles, Photography, Soccer in America

goalie-soccer-in-america

Sometimes I wonder if goalies ever get bored during a game. I realize they have to stay engaged, focused and up on what is going on in the game. But there has to be a moment here or there, where a goalie hasn’t touched the ball for a considerable amount of time. Some solitary moments in the middle of a game filled with 22 players and a stadium filled with thousands of fans.

Stub Hub Center

Carson, CA

Summer 2014

~beans

To submit your photos to be included in this series, email them to dunny [at] bumpypitch.com. 

Added on August 28th, 2014 by

Champions League Group Stage Draw 2014/15

Filed under: EPL News, Highlights, Videos, and Scores | English Premier League Highlights, La Liga News, Highlights, Videos, and Scores | Spanish La Liga, Soccer News

Champs Draw

~~ Some HUGE matchups in play as Real Madrid face off with Liverpool, Arsenal vs Dortmund, Barcelona going up against Zlatan & PSG and the toughest of them all…. Bayern Munich vs Manchester City vs Roma…. Yikes.

Champs Draw0

Added on August 28th, 2014 by

Xabi Alonso To Bayern Munich – ‘Deal Agreed In Principle’

Filed under: La Liga News, Highlights, Videos, and Scores | Spanish La Liga, Soccer News

~~ BIG TIME pickup for Bayern Munich if the deal gets finalized…. Xabi Alonso fits PERFECTLY into Pep Guardiola’s set up.

Added on August 28th, 2014 by

Martin Odegaard Debuts For Norway Full National Team – 15 years & 253 days

Filed under: EPL News, Highlights, Videos, and Scores | English Premier League Highlights, Highlights, La Liga News, Highlights, Videos, and Scores | Spanish La Liga, Soccer News

Marting Odegaard

~~  This kid has all the tools to be a special, special player…. To play with that much ability, flair, technical ability and freedom at just 15 years old is incredible to watch.

First game and full National Team debut against the perfect opponent in the books.  Now to see what he looks like against the likes of England & Co.

Of course he’s a lefty…..

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And take a look at some of these highlights with his club Stromsgodset…

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Added on August 28th, 2014 by