Ronaldo Named Portugal’s Player Of The Year.

Cristiano Ronaldo has been named Portugal’s player of the year for 2016, after leading his country to their first major title at the European Championship last summer.

The Real Madrid star beat club teammate Pepe and Sporting goalkeeper Rui Patricio to the prize.

Ronaldo also led Real Madrid to their 11th Champions League triumph, converting the winning penalty to secure the title ahead of Atletico Madrid.

He finished as the competition’s top scorer with 16 goals.


Source: Channels TV

Ronaldo, Bale back for Champions League clash

Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale were named Monday in Real Madrid’s Champions League squad for the last-16 second-leg tie against Napoli after missing the weekend win over Eibar.

Fourt-time Ballon d’Or winner Ronaldo was sidelined with an injury which coach Zinedine Zidane described as “nothing serious”. Also back in the squad for Tuesday’s clash is Welshman Bale after completing a one-match ban.

Both were absent from Saturday’s 4-1 victory at Eibar in which Karim Benzema and James Rodriguez were outstanding.

Reigning European champions Real lead Napoli 3-1 going into the second leg in Italy and tipped as favourites for a quarter-final berth.

Forbes names Ronaldo highest-paid sportsman of 2016 ahead of Messi, LeBron James

Forbes has named Real Madrid superstar, Cristiano Ronaldo, the world’s highest-paid sportsman of 2016 for the first time ever.

The 32-year-old also becomes only the second person from a team sport to make it to the top of the list.

Ronaldo reportedly earned $88million last year, ahead of Barcelona’s Lionel Messi ($81million) and NBA star LeBron James ($77million).

Kurt Badenhausen of Forbes, explains that the Portugal captain has overtaken boxer Floyd Mayweather and golfer Tiger Woods.

“With Mayweather hanging up his gloves and Woods hampered by injuries, there is an opening at the top. Filling the gap is the biggest star in the biggest sport on the planet,” Badenhausen wrote.

“This year, soccer icon Cristiano Ronaldo is the world’s highest-paid athlete, with earnings of $88m over the past 12 months from salary, bonuses and endorsements. Ronaldo is only the second team athlete after Michael Jordan to rank as the top-paid since Forbes began tracking athlete earnings in 1990.”

Other footballers who made the top 50 include: Barcelona star Neymar in 21st place ($37.5m), Manchester United’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic at 23 ($37.4m), Madrid’s Gareth Bale at 25 ($35.9m) and Wayne Rooney of United at 49 ($26.1m).

Ronaldo “The Best” lashes out at haters seeking to bring him down

Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo claimed he had to overcome media “campaigns” against him to win FIFA’s inaugural “The Best” prize for the world’s best player in 2016.

Ronaldo lifted the award at a star-studded ceremony in Zurich on Monday after a glittering year on the pitch saw him lead Madrid to Champions League glory and captain Portugal to their first ever major international triumph at Euro 2016.

However, Ronaldo’s year was blighted by reports from an international consortium of media organisations in December that claimed a huge data leak involving 18 million documents showed the Portuguese hid 150 million euros ($160 million) from image rights in the British Virgin Islands.

“There were many doubts, many campaigns against me from inside and outside football,” Ronaldo told Spanish radio station COPE.

“They wanted to hit me from all sides and the truth is The Best was The Best and that is me, so I am very happy.

“They wanted me to feel bad, but as I have said ‘he who owes nothing, fears nothing in life’. As always, I have shut up a few mouths once again.”

The Spanish tax authorities have committed to investigating the allegations against Ronaldo and a series of other Spanish-based sports stars named in the “Football Leaks” investigation.

However, the four-time World Player of the Year insists he is calm and believes justice will be done in his favour.

“It bothers me because when you do things well, when you help a lot of people and I am going to mention the award for charity work, which is one of the best awards I have in my museum.

“I have helped so many people and you do so many good things, but people want to hit you to camouflage the bad things that others do.

“It bothered me and it continues to bother me, but justice is always done in the end and so we are going to wait and see what happens.”

Oops! Ballon d’Or winner ‘LEAKED’ with Cristiano Ronaldo set to win.

The winner of the 2016 Ballon d’Or will be Cristiano Ronaldo, according to a ‘leaked’ copy of France Football ahead of Monday night’s ceremony.

A supposed front page of the publication has been circulated online, featuring Ronaldo clutching the trophy, which would take him within one of Lionel Messi’s record five Ballon d’Or.

France Football, who founded the award, will publish an exclusive interview with the winner, and the front page would seem to confirm that it will be the Real Madrid superstar.

It also features a quote from Antoine Griezmann, saying: “I finished behind two monsters.”

That would appear to indicate that the Frenchman finished third in the voting behind Clasico rivals Messi and Ronaldo.

Ronaldo will not be present at the ceremony on Monday evening, having landed in Japan ahead of the FIFA Club World Cup.

The Portuguese is set to be officially announced as this year’s winner at around 8pm GMT.

Countdown as Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi await Ballon d’Or announcement

Cristiano Ronaldo is expected to crown a memorable year by being named the world’s best player for a fourth time on Monday night.

The Ballon d’Or ceremony will be held in Paris on Monday while Ronaldo is thousands of miles away in Japan, ahead of Club World Cup duty for Real Madrid.

However, Ronaldo is expected to pick up the main award after a remarkable year even by his own high standards.

Real beat city rivals Atletico Madrid in May to become European champions for a record-extending 11th time, with Ronaldo once more playing a crucial role.

Two months later Portugal triumphed at Euro 2016 in France to claim a major trophy for the first time.

Ronaldo has scored 48 goals in 52 games for club and country in 2016.

The 31-year-old has previously won the Ballon d’Or three times, the last in 2014 when it had been merged with the FIFA World Player of the Year accolade.

Ronaldo is expected to beat Antoine Griezmann and Lionel Messi to the award.

Griezmann finished as top scorer at Euro 2016, where Les Bleus were defeated by Portugal in the final, and also helped take Atletico to the Champions League final.

Messi, meanwhile, will be looking to repeat his success of 2015 when he again beat Ronaldo to the individual title, which was a fourth since 2010 and fifth overall.

The Argentina captain, 29, helped guide Barcelona to another domestic league and cup double in 2015-16, scoring 41 goals in all competitions.

Spanish treasury begin Ronaldo probe

Spanish Treasury Hacienda have confirmed it will investigate Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo for an alleged tax evasion.

According to Cadena COPE, Spain’s Secretary of State for Finance Jose Enrique Fernandez revealed the treasury would “perform inspections it deems necessary” on Ronaldo.

“The information held by the ministry of finance corresponds to that published in the media,” explained Jose Enrique Fernandez de Moya.
El Confidencial reported on Thursday that the Portuguese, among other world stars such as former Madrid midfielder Mesut Ozil, deliberately hid income from image rights in low-tax countries such as Republic of Ireland.

Several European newspapers have obtained leaked documents which suggest Ronaldo and Mourinho could be involved in a multimillion-Euro ‘tax evasion and money laundering’ scheme, and the newspapers claim Ronaldo and Mourinho may have benefited from a tax system orchestrated by their agent Jorge Mendes.

Ronaldo pictured with new girlfriend Georgina Rodriguez at Disneyland

Cristiano Ronaldo amazingly disguised himself in a wig and sunglasses as he took Madrid beauty Georgina Rodriguez out for a date in Paris.

The Real Madrid superstar was snapped out and about in the French capital with his latest girl wearing a jet-black hairpiece, shades and a Duffle coat.

But the Portuguese winger couldn’t evade Gossip magazine Chi.

They managed to land some exclusive pictures that show Portuguese wing maestro Ronaldo is back in the dating game.

Former Manchester United hero Ronaldo recently split from former Miss Spain Desire Cordero – and it looks like he’s already moved on, although he clearly did his best to avoid being spotted.

According to Chi, Ronaldo, who reportedly responded to a ‘homophobic jibe’ from Atletico Madrid’s Koke in spectacular fashion on Saturday, enjoyed his date with Georgina Rodriguez in a recent trip to the French capital.

The gossip mag also managed to get hold of a picture of the couple kissing.

Now the question appears to be: How did Ronaldo meet Georgina?

One theory is that they met at a D&G event. Georgina is thought to be connected to the Gucci store in Madrid and word is the couple struck an accord at a Dolce Gabanna event when she was in the VIP section along with Ronaldo.

Ronaldo, meanwhile, appears to have brought Georgina to the Bernabeu in recent weeks.

Cristiano Ronaldo Is A Bad Influence On James Rodriguez – Asprilla

Faustino Asprilla believes Cristiano Ronaldo is a bad influence on James Rodriguez, with the Colombia international replicating many of his Real Madrid colleague’s more unfortunate on-field actions.

James is the star turn within his national side’s ranks, as a performer gracing the books of one of world football’s biggest teams.

That can only be considered a positive for the South American nation, but Asprilla fears that time spent working with global superstars has gone to the 25-year-old’s head.

He has seen too much negative body language from the talented playmaker of late, with his gestures towards team-mates that do not pass him the ball or perform as he expects mirroring those often seen from Ronaldo at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Asprilla, who won 57 caps for his country during his playing days, told ESPN of James’ actions during Colombia’s 3-0 defeat to Argentina on Tuesday: “Lately what I am seeing from James – who I love and respect a lot – is that his friendship with Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid is damaging him.

“He has the same gestures when they don’t give him the ball [in the Colombia team]. When they don’t give Cristiano the ball he gesticulates to everyone. In Colombia [James] waves his arms at his teammates.”

“At the start of the game he scowled at Alavarez Balanta and made a gesture. I don’t know if it was because he didn’t pass the ball or not.”

Former Newcastle and Parma forward Asprilla believes James needs to show greater respect to his teammates – many of whom look up to him – saying that it is likely that he would ‘get a slap’ if he tried his international antics in any other team.

He added: “The first thing James needs to do is help his teammates improve because he’s playing in a team of youngsters who respect him and no one dares say anything to him.

“In another team they’d give him a slap. At least in the Colombia side I played in we wouldn’t stand for it.

“It’s normal to argue with the referee and quarrel with rival players, but with your teammates it’s not.

“You can quarrel, but doing it because one of your teammates didn’t pass the ball is the ugliest thing you can do as a footballer. He’s picked up that habit from Cristiano Ronaldo, who does it every eight days.”

Ronaldo Signs Lifetime Sponsorship Contract Worth More Than $1Bn With Nike

Cristiano Ronaldo has signed a new contract with sportswear giant Nike which could be worth up to a reported $1 billion.


The announcement comes just 24 hours after the Portuguese superstar agreed to a new five-year deal with Real Madrid that saw his weekly salary climb to £365,000.


Ronaldo claims his latest sponsorship contract will make him a permanent part of the Nike brand, with suggestions coming from America that he is on similar terms as basketball stars LeBron James and Michael Jordan.


“I look at this new contract for life. I’m a member of the family but I have to say Nike, for me, it’s the best,” Ronaldo said. “They do things that no one else can do. I have a great relationship with this brand, I have great friends here in the company.


“They have specific people that work with me. This means a lot because it means I can give my feedback to them and they can listen to my opinion, so we work as family. They are very imaginative and they do unbelievable things. Sometimes they have surprises and I like surprises. This is my brand, Nike they are smart, they know how to pick the best one, so I’m happy because I’m one of them.”

I still have 10 more years to play football – Ronaldo

Real Madrid forward, Cristiano Ronaldo has said he intends to continue playing football for the next 10 years.


Ronaldo said this after signing a five-year contract with Real Madrid which will see him stay at the club till 2021.


“What I most want is to continue enjoying the years I have left to play. I still have 10 years (ahead),” Ronaldo said.


Ronaldo led Portugal to an Euro Cup victory this year and also scored the winning penalty as Madrid won the Champions League for an 11th time in May.


“After the season I’ve had, to win the Champions League, the Euros and then renew my contract with Real Madrid it is something I never imagined. It is a dream year.”

Eden Hazard Eyes Ballon d’Or Award

Chelsea playmaker, Eden Hazard, has admitted that he wants to win the Ballon d’Or prize next year.

The Belgian’s form dipped dramatically, after he won the PFA Player of the Year award, as the Blues clinched the Premier League title in 2014/2015 season.

Hazard has rediscovered his form under Antonio Conte and scored twice, as Chelsea hammered Everton 5-0 on Saturday .

The brace took his Premier League tally to seven goals in 11 matches this term, having only netted four times in 2015-16.

“Last season I was not good, so for me it was normal that I was not on the list,” Hazard said.

“But I want to come back on the list, and give everything to be on the list, not to be in the top 23 but to be in the top five.

“Yes, I want to reach that level.”

“Last season was difficult for me. I tried to be the same player that I was two years ago,” he added.

“But now I am trying to play like when I was a kid. I am enjoying playing now, my position is a bit different from before, I go inside more. It gives me more freedom, and I’m good for the moment.

“Conte has not change a lot, it is just that I have a little bit more freedom when we have the ball and without the ball.

“Because I don’t need to defend against the right-back, because Marcos Alonso is there. I just focus on staying in my position. And when I have the ball I have more freedom and I can go where I want to go, and be decisive.”

Xavi Hernandez backs Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo to win Ballon d’Or

Xavi Hernandez has extended an olive branch to Cristiano Ronaldo by saying the Real Madrid star “has the numbers” to win this year’s Ballon d’Or.

The former Barcelona midfielder unintentionally started a war of words with Ronaldo in September when he said that Ronaldo cannot be compared to his former teammate Lionel Messi. Ronaldo retorted by bragging about the fact he’s won the Ballon d’Or on three occasions and mocking Xavi’s decision to move to Qatari side Al-Sadd for the final years of his professional career.

However, Xavi has not risen to the Portuguese international’s comments, instead of backing him as the primary candidate to be crowned as football’s best player for the fourth time.

“Cristiano has the numbers to win this year’s Ballon d’Or, having won the Champions League and the Euros [with Real Madrid and Portugal],” he said at the ASPIRE4SPORT Congress & Exhibition in Amsterdam.

“But I also think that it’ll be very competitive, because Messi will be there, of course.”

The dispute between the two players started when Xavi was recently asked to compare Ronaldo and Messi in an interview with Cadena SER.

“Ronaldo is a player of his time,” he said, “but the problem is that there is another player who has been pretty much the best player in history.

“Ronaldo is extraordinary but compared to Messi, for me and for everyone who likes football, there can be no comparisons.”

Asked about the comments, Ronaldo replied: “I couldn’t care less about what Xavi says about me, he plays in Qatar or I don’t even know where.

“He’s won every collective trophy, including a World Cup and the European Championship, but he’s never won a Ballon d’Or.”

In August, Ronaldo was named UEFA Best Player in Europe ahead of Madrid teammate Gareth Bale and Atletico Madrid star Antoine Griezmann.

This year’s Ballon d’Or will be voted on exclusively by journalists after France Football ended its six-year association with FIFA in September.

That relationship had seen the Ballon d’Or and FIFA’s World Player of the Year combined for the last six years, with journalists and national team captains and coaches voting on the world’s best player.

FIFA have not announced their plans for the World Player of the Year award going forward.

‘I Will Make Real Madrid Return Against Osasuna’ – CR7

Cristiano Ronaldo has revealed that he will return for Real Madrid in Saturday’s Liga clash with Osasuna.

The 31-year-old has been nursing a knee injury that he picked up in the European Championship final and has only returned to Madrid training this week.

The Portugal captain insists he is ready to return, however, telling reporters at a promotional event: “Yes, I will play [against Osasuna].”

More to follow…

Messi Snubbed As Bale, Ronaldo, Griezmann Up For UEFA Best Player Award

The Argentine failed to make the top three for the Best Player in Europe accolade in favour of the Real Madrid duo and the Atletico and France striker

Lionel Messi has been left out of the top three shortlist for the UEFA Best Player in Europe Award, with Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Antoine Griezmann in the running.

Messi was not even placed fourth in the long list of 10 candidates as Barcelona team-mate Luis Suarez bumped him down to fifth.

Ronaldo is favourite for the award, having led Real Madrid to their 11th Champions League win in 2015-16, before being crowned European champion with Portugal after seeing off France in the final at Euro 2016.


Bale, meanwhile, also won the Champions League with Madrid, while inspiring Wales to the semi-finals at the European Championship.

France striker Griezmann lost the Champions League final with Atletico, and was also on the losing side to Ronaldo at the Euros, although he was crowned top scorer with six goals.

The award, which Messi won last year, is voted for by journalists from UEFA’s member nations. Gianluigi Buffon, Toni Kroos, Thomas Muller, Manuel Neuer and Pepe were the other players on the long list.

Source –

Ronaldo Throws Reporter’s Microphone In Lake

Cristiano Ronaldo threw a reporter’s microphone in a lake on Wednesday after objecting to being approached hours before Portugal’s crunch Euro 2016 match against Hungary.

Ronaldo, 31, has endured a frustrating time in France, hitting the post with his second-half penalty attempt in Saturday’s goal-less draw with Austria.

He also drew criticism after slamming Iceland for their “small mentality” after the minnows held Portugal to a 1-1 draw in their opening match.

But the Real Madrid superstar was in no mood to talk when a reporter from the TV station of Portuguese newspaper Correio da Manha approached him during a morning team walk at a lake in Lyon, just hours before kick-off.

Video of the incident shows the reporter asking: “Ronaldo, ready for the game today?”

But without a word or glance at the journalist, Ronaldo took his microphone and threw it in the lake, then carried on with the team stroll.

There is a history of bad blood between Ronaldo and Correio da Manha, who he successfully sued after the Portuguese newspaper printed details of his private life.

The Portugal captain appears to be feeling the pressure with his team needing at least a point at the Stade de Lyon to reach the last 16 in their final Group F match.

Having become Portugal’s record caps holder last Saturday against Austria, when he made his 128th appearance, Ronaldo is set to make more history.

If he scores, he will become the first player to do so at four consecutive Euro tournaments.

He will also become the player to have played the most matches at a European Championship finals with 17 appearances.

Credit: Guardian

Nigerian Killed Over Messi, Ronaldo Squabble

A man was killed after arguing with a friend over whether Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo was the best footballer in the world.


Nigerian national, Michael Chukwuma, 21, stabbed 34-year-old compatriot Obinna Durumchukwu in a Mumbai suburb, Indian police said.


The incident took place following a party on Saturday night.


“They were discussing football players. One is a fan of Messi and the other was for Ronaldo,” a police inspector said.
“During the conversation a quarrel took place. The deceased threw a glass into the face of the accused person. The glass broke and caused small injuries.

“After that the accused took the broken glass and assaulted the deceased person who died due to heavy bleeding.”


Argentina international Messi, 28, is a five-time winner of the Ballon d’Or – the annual award given to the world’s best player by the governing body FIFA.


Portugal captain Ronaldo, 31, has won the accolade three times.


Credit : Punch

Cristiano Ronaldo Ignores Real Madrid President’s Orders And Flies Out To Morocco To See ‘Best Friend’ With His Family

There were reports recently that the Real Madrid star had been banned by his club’s president Florentino Perez from making constant trips to Morocco to see kick boxer friend, Badr Hari. But photos uploaded yesterday by the player on his Instagram account and photos from paparazzi indicate Ronaldo not only defied his club’s president orders, but he also traveled with his mum and son Cristiano Jr and they all spent the weekend with Badr Hari. See more photos below…

And according to reports, contrary to a gay relationship between Cristiano and Badr being mooted by some media outlets ,the 30-year-old Portuguese international is planning to build a house and hotel in Marrakech, Morocco as he and his family are huge lovers of the city.

Bale’s Agent Slams ‘Disgraceful’ Transfer Leak And Demands Investigation

Details of the Welshman’s transfer from Tottenham have been revealed, detailing that he cost more than Cristiano Ronaldo

Gareth Bale‘s agent Jonathan Barnett has described the leaked details of the Welshman’s transfer to Real Madrid as “disgraceful” and demanded an investigation.

Website Football Leaks published documents detailing the star’s transfer in 2013 which state the world-record figure paid by Madrid to Tottenham.

It is claimed the Santiago Bernabeu club parted with €100,759,418 for Bale – more than the €94m fee paid for Cristiano Ronaldo in 2009 – despite their previous insistence that Bale’s deal cost closer to €91.59m.

Reports in Spain also suggest Tottenham were forbidden from disclosing details of the transfer fee, which is understood to have been paid in four installments.

Barnett is furious at the leak and has called for apologies from the Football Association, telling Telegraph Sport: “There should be an inquiry and an independent investigation because it’s outrageous.

“There also needs to be an apology from the Football Association to the clubs and the player.

“I think it’s disgraceful that people can get hold of this sort of stuff. It shows complete disregard for both clubs and the player.”

A British journalist claimed this month that Madrid had instructed him not to mention Bale’s world-record fee during an interview with the 26-year-old.

“Real Madrid are a club so worried about image that when I interviewed Bale it was requested to me, ‘don’t put in the article how much Gareth Bale cost’,” Jonathan Norcroft of The Sunday Times told the BBC.

“The reason for that is because it was a world-record transfer fee, but Cristiano Ronaldo doesn’t like to see that someone else cost more than him.”

Ronaldo Doesn’t Deserve To Be A Ballon d’Or Finalist – Dani Alves

The Portuguese has been named among the finalists to win the award, along with Lionel Messi and Neymar, but the Barca star has now criticised his Real Madrid rival

Barcelona right-back Dani Alves insists Cristiano Ronaldo does not deserve to be a Ballon d’Or finalist, and says Neymar has become the second best player in the world behind Lionel Messi.

Both Messi and Neymar have been named among the finalists to win the award, along with the Real Madrid superstar, who has scored 16 goals in 18 appearances thus far this season.

Alves, though, does not think Ronaldo should not still be in the running.

“Messi is a bit ahead, because of his influence on the game,” Alves told reporters. “I think at this moment, Neymar is second best in the world.

“Cristiano Ronaldo doesn’t deserve to be among the Ballon d’Or finalists. It’s not only about scoring goals.”

Cristiano Ronaldo Releases His Own CR7 Keyboard, Just Because He’s C.Ronaldo!

This guy has a great business sense! He has his own fragrance, headphones, underwear, game, museum, clothing line and now has recently launched his own keyboard search app. The new app features a keyboard with a ”CR7 look and feel” as well as the latest news and information concerning the Real Madrid and Portugal star.

The only question is if it auto-corrects when you type ”Lionel Messi is the best player in the world” Lol! He posted on Instagram ”My new official keyboard is now available for your smartphone. Take a look and try it! ”

The Usual Suspects Messi & Ronaldo And A New Nominee Neymar, Make Ballon d’Or Final Shortlist

The original 23-man list has been reduced to just three names and includes two Barcelona players, with the winner to be revealed at a ceremony in Zurich on January 11, 2016

Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar will contest the 2015 Ballon d’Or competition after the shortlist was whittled down from 23 names to just three.

Messi is the favourite to land the accolade, having led Barcelona to a famous treble last season, while Ronaldo is looking to defend his crown and draw level with the Argentine for overall wins.

Were he to pick up the Ballon d’Or at the ceremony in Zurich on January 11, 2016, it would be Messi’s fifth World Player of the Year title, more than any other player.

This year he is joined on the podium by Barca team-mate Neymar, who netted 10 goals en route to Champions League glory, including scoring in the final against Juventus in Berlin.

The Brazilian was also the joint-third top scorer in La Liga last season with 22 goals – and already has 14 this term – though his haul was put in the shade by those of Messi (43 goals) and topscorer Ronaldo (48).

For the sixth straight time, the final three-man Ballon d’Or shortlist does not include a single Premier League player, while it is a decade since an Englishman last made the final three (Frank Lampard in 2005).

The women’s nominees for their respective prize are the USA’s Carli Lloyd, Japan’s Aya Miyama and Germany’s Celia Sasic.

Security Concerns ‘Inevitable’ Ahead Of Clasico – Iniesta

Barcelona captain Andres Iniesta admitted on Thursday it is impossible to ignore security concerns ahead of Saturday’s huge clash between Real Madrid and Barca in the Spanish capital just days after a series of deadly attacks in Paris.

The Spanish government have promised security measures on an unprecedented level for the match that will see a capacity 81,000 fans descend upon the Santiago Bernabeu with 2,400 police, stewards and emergency services set to form a triple ring of security around the stadium.

“The situation generates concern for everybody. It is inevitable, I think we all agree on that,” said Iniesta.

“From what I know and what the security forces are saying, all possible measures will be taken and everyone should collaborate so that before, during and after the game a sporting spectacle can take place and it is the game that is the focus for such a special day for the world of football.”

The Stade de France, where France were hosting Germany, was one of a number of targets struck during the attacks on Friday that left 129 dead and over 350 injured.

Iniesta was part of the Spain squad that travelled to Brussels for a friendly against Belgium on Tuesday only for the game to be suspended less than 24 hours before kick-off due to the elevated terror threat.

“Fear isn’t the right word, but there was concern,” Iniesta added.

“We went because it seemed like everything could take place normally despite the situation we were in before they took that decision. A completely correct decision.”

However, he wholeheartedly backed the decision for games across Spain and the rest of Europe to go ahead this weekend.

“It is a shame that people aren’t talking about sport, football or the spectacle, but it is the reality we live in and we can’t ignore it.

“We have to try to return to normality. On Saturday, it is not just Madrid and Barca that are playing, but many games and hopefully everything goes as it always has done.”

Suarez: “Real Madrid Players Will Not Target Messi’s Knee”

The Uruguay international striker has scored 13 goals in all competitions this season thus far and says that the Argentine will not be unfairly targeted by Real’s defenders

Barcelona striker Luis Suarez does not expect Real Madrid players to target Lionel Messi‘s knee in this weekend’s Clasico.

Messi has been out of action since injuring his knee against Las Palmas in September, but has returned to training ahead of Saturday’s clash at Santiago Bernabeu.

Madrid captain Sergio Ramos is also set to feature despite struggling with a shoulder problem, and Suarez says neither player will be subjected to rough treatment.

“I don’t think anybody will try to hit Sergio Ramos’ shoulder and I do not think anyone will try to hit Messi’s knee either,” Suarez said at a news conference on Wednesday.

“We are colleagues and professionals. Messi has been training with the squad, but it is up to the coach to decide whether he will play.”

Barcelona hold a three-point lead over Madrid at the top of La Liga heading into Saturday’s match, but Suarez does not feel this weekend’s game will be decisive in the title race.

“We have to be happy with our recent performances, because we have been doing a good job without the best player in the world, travelling to the Bernabeu three points clear of Madrid,” the in-form Uruguayan added.

“Games like the Clasico are the ones that are decided by great players, but it will not be decisive in the race for the Liga title.

“There are still a lot of games left and Atletico Madrid also have a role to play.”

Saturday’s match represents a special occasion for Suarez as he returns to the stadium where he made his debut for Barcelona last October.

He continued: “It is always a special feeling to play in a stadium like the Santiago Bernabeu. It is even more special because I made my debut for Barcelona at the Bernabeu.

“Madrid are Madrid. We know what we have to do and we must be very focused right from the start.”

“I Play Like Cristiano Ronaldo” – Bebe

Rayo Vallecano attacker Bebe feels his playing style is similar to that of Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo.

Former Manchester United attacker Bebe has likened his style to that of Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo, while also voicing his admiration for Didier Drogba.

Bebe has impressed this campaign at Rayo Vallecano after previous disappointing spells with United and Benfica and he believes his style of play is similar to that of his illustrious compatriot.

“My idols? Drogba and Cristiano Ronaldo. I have the same way of running and the same shooting style as Cristiano,” Bebe told AS.

“He’s definitely one of my favourites.”

The 25-year-old failed to make the grade at United after joining from Vitoria Guimaraes in 2010, but he still has fond memories of his time at Old Trafford.

“It all happened very quickly, a total surprise. One day I’m training and the next they’re telling me that I’m going to sign a five-year contract with Manchester United. I thought it was a joke. I wasn’t there long, but I enjoyed it,” Bebe added.

“It was every kid’s dream, it was insane. I was playing with the best in the world. It wasn’t easy, the first week I had to take a deep breath, but I got used to it. I adapted and tried to fit in.

“Rio Ferdinand, Ryan Giggs and Wayne Rooney really impressed me. A few months earlier I was watching them on TV and suddenly here I was running, jumping and talking to them. Giggs really caught my attention, I saw how they loved him, always asking for autographs, pictures, jerseys.”

Ronaldo Premieres His Film In London

From soccer pitch to red carpet, FIFA World Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo, premiered his personal portrait film “Ronaldo” in London on Monday. Ronaldo reunited with his former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson on the red carpet, which also saw a late arrival from Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho.

Posing with a line of fans, Ronaldo sought to break a selfie record upon arrival and was also awarded certificates for other Guinness World Records he had, including “most ‘liked’ person on Facebook”. “The people who really know me, they are not going to be surprised about the movie,” Ronaldo told Reuters when asked about the film.
Asked if after his soccer playing career he might eye a position as head of FIFA or UEFA, the Real Madrid striker said that he would adjust accordingly to the dictates of his future endeavours. “I’m not that smart to be president. I do not worry about that, about what is going to happen in my future.”
“I think I’m still able to play a few more years of football, but in future I have other projects, that will be more interesting than being president,” he added. The film, made by the team behind documentaries on racing driver Ayrton Senna and singer Amy Winehouse, looks at his professional side as well as shows tender moments between Ronaldo and his young son.
“You have a chance to see the real Cristiano,” Ronaldo’s agent Jorge Mendes said of the film. Ronaldo is also captain of Portugal’s national team, which last month secured its spot for Euro 2016 in France.
Asked if he thought he could bring the side to victory, Ronaldo said: “Well, I will try. “I will help the team and I will give my best like always and let’s see what happens.” “But I am looking forward to that.”



Credit : Reuters

C. Ronaldo Picks His Next Generation Of Superstars

The Real Madrid star, who turned 30 in February, has named five players he thinks have the potential to replicate his achievements in football, including a Barcelona rival

Cristiano Ronaldo has picked five young players he considers the most promising in football today.

Ronaldo was heralded as a teenager with great potential when he arrived at Manchester United for just over £12 million in 2003.

He went on to win three Premier League titles and the Champions League whilst at Old Trafford before moving to Real Madrid.

The Portugal international won the Champions League again with Madrid and claimed another league title in 2011-12, and is also among an elite group of players including Lionel Messi, Johan Cruyff, Michel Platini and Marco van Basten to have won the Ballon d’Or three or more times.

In an interview with BT Sport, Ronaldo has named the young stars he believes could follow in his footsteps.

“You see many players with potential, I will mention [Martin] Odegaard of Madrid for example,” he said. “At 16 he’s still young but you can see he’s a very good player.

“[Eden] Hazard for example, the No.7 of Manchester, [Memphis] Depay is a good player too. [Also Paul] Pogba and maybe Neymar.”

Gareth Bale Set To Be Fit For El-Clasico

Despite missing Wales’ friendly with Netherlands, Chris Coleman says the Real Madrid star is expected to be fit for El Clasico later this month

Wales boss Chris Coleman has suggested Gareth Bale will be fit in time for El Clasico on November 21 despite not being selected for the friendly with Netherlands in Cardiff.

Bale is not in the squad for the friendly at Cardiff City Stadium on November 13, with Arsenal’s Aaron Ramsey also not selected, as the pair recover from calf and hamstring problems respectively.

Madrid forward Bale limped out of his side’s 3-0 win over Levante in the first game back following the international break, in which he helped Wales qualify for Euro 2016.

And Coleman explained it was a case of not wishing to gamble on Bale’s fitness rather than anything more concerning.

“I think, having [had] the correspondence with Madrid, he’ll probably figure in the next game for them [after the international break] I would imagine,” he explained.

“But they want to use this time wisely and carefully and get him up to speed. We respect that.

“Gareth also wants to do what’s right. It’s not in our nature to take risks with players.”

Bale is likely to be involved against Barca in the first Clasico of the season at the Santiago Bernabeu – the rivals currently level on points at the top of La Liga.

On Sunday, Bale posted a picture of his return to training on Twitter with the message: “Back on the pitch stepping up my rehab!”

“I Don’t Compete With Ronaldo & He Doesn’t Compete With Me” – Lionel Messi

Barcelona star Lionel Messi insists he doesn’t see himself as being in competition with Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo despite the constant comparisons that exist between the pair.

As individuals, Messi and Ronaldo have dominated the game for the best part of the last decade, with the last seven Ballon d’Ors won by one of the two.

That’s expected to become eight in January, with Messi tipped to win it back from Ronaldo, who has won it for the last two years.

However, the Argentine is adamant he’s not spurred on by how

These are things that [other] people say,” Messi said when asked about his rivalry with the Portuguese international in an interview with Yahoo!. 

“I don’t compete with Cristiano and I suppose he would not compete with me — what I want is the very best for my teams and that’s what I am working for.”

More to follow…

Only Messi And Ronaldo Are Better Than Aguero – Pellegrini

The Manchester City boss rates his star striker, who scored five times against Newcastle at the weekend, as the third best player in the world at the moment

Manchester City star Sergio Aguero is up there with Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo among the best players in the world, according to his manager Manuel Pellegrini.

Aguero scored five goals in 20 minutes as City thrashed Newcastle United 6-1 in the Premier League on Saturday.

Last season’s golden boot winner had made a slow start to the season, but his haul took his tally to six in the league.

Pellegrini believes only superstars Messi and Ronaldo are better than his 27-year-old forward.

“After what we have seen [against Newcastle] of course Kun [Aguero] is at that level,” Pellegrini said.

“I have already said that, after Ronaldo and Messi, he is the best player in the world.

“But the important thing – not only for Kun but as a team – is that we must continue to improve.

“We need to win the Premier League again and to win the Champions League, because Messi and Ronaldo are always involved in that competition and that’s very important for a player.

“I’m very happy for us that in Kun we have a very important player. He always makes important things in competitions.”

Ronaldo, Lampard, Mourinho receive Guinness World Records certificates

Cristiano Ronaldo, Frank Lampard and Jose Mourinho, are some of the football stars that were honoured in the new Guinness World Records book.

Former Chelsea midfielder, Lampard, was awarded for the most Premier League teams scored against, after he netted against the Blues while on loan at Manchester City. The record was previously held by Andy Cole.

“I set goals throughout my career to break records and this is one I never imagined to get. I am a big fan of the books and always read the books with my daughters before bed so to feature in it is amazing,” Lampard said.

“It was a weird feeling when I scored but it did get me the record so I am also very happy with the goal.”

His former boss, Mourinho, picked up four different awards. He was presented with certificates for:

  • The most Points in a Premier League season (95),
  • Most Champions League’s won at different clubs (two),
  • Youngest manager to reach 100 Champions League games (49 years 12 days)
  • Most games unbeaten at home in the Premier League (77).


The 52-year-old said afterwards: “The fact that I can hang these awards in my office is nice. It’s something fun and as a kid you could never imagine that one day you would be in Guinness World Records Book. I’m now more focused on winning the next game than on what I’ve done in the last 10 or 15 years.”


Ronaldo was awarded for the most hat-tricks in La Liga and is also the most followed athlete and person on both Facebook (over 100 million likes) and Twitter (over 27m followers).

Cristiano Ronaldo Spends N6.1million On Waxwork Of Himself

Football superstar Cristiano Ronaldo has spent £20,000 on a waxwork of himself to take pride of place in his Spanish mansion.

The Real Madrid player paid for the sculpture after making numerous visits to see a similar statue of himself  (pictured above) in the Spanish capital’s Museum of Wax. Ronaldo, who used to play for Manchester United, hired British waxwork sculptor Michael Wade to make the replica at his renowned studio in Bridport, Devon. See the replica after the cut.

The 30-year-old vain footballer even got his personal hairdresser to ensure the wax figure has his
trademark hairstyle.


Neymar Deserves Uefa Award Over Ronaldo – Luis Enrique

The Barcelona boss argued that the top three places in the Best Player in Europe gong should go to his all-star forward line and talked up the threat posed by Supercopa rivals Athletico madrid


Barcelona head coach Luis Enrique believes that Neymar was more deserving of a place in the top three of the Uefa Best Player in Europe award than Cristiano Ronaldo.

The governing body announced on Wednesday that the Real Madrid star would be on the podium alongside Barca stars Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi.

However, the former Celta Vigo boss believes the Brazilian forward would have been a better choice than the Portuguese attacker, following his exploits in Barca’s treble-winning campaign.

“Who decided that Neymar isn’t one of the candidates for the Uefa trophy?” he asked at a press conference.

“I think it should be Neymar, Messi and Suarez, without a doubt.”

Luis Enrique went on to say that he feels his side are the team to beat in Spain and in Europe as he prepares for the first leg of their Supercopa tie against Athletic Bilbao on Friday.

“The pre-season schedule was set up so we can be the best we can be,” he said. “We have to be competitive from the start of the season and still be the team to beat. I would also say the same in Europe.

“The sextuple is a goal we have in mind and one that motivates us but we are focused on is winning the fifth title first – the sixth is still far away.”

Luis Enrique is expecting a tough game against Athletic and feels the Basques could try to man-mark Lionel Messi.

“Both teams know each other well, it [man-marking Messi] may be an option, but there are others,” said the former Camp Nou midfielder.

“They press very well and always make things difficult for their opponents. It will be an uncomfortable match and it will only be resolved over the two games.”

Olabode Emmanuel Olawumi: Cristiano Ronaldo’s Homeless Prank, 7 Major Life Lessons Learnt

Real Madrid superstar, Cristiano Ronaldo has just won himself a new fan. I was surfing the internet some minutes ago, when I came across a headline: ‘Cristiano Ronaldo dresses up as a homeless man & pranks Madrid with his football skills’ (LIB),  I quickly clicked the link to find out what it was all about.
Upon viewing the video, I was stunned as I watched one of the world’s greatest footballers disguise as a homeless person. The video which was meant to prank Real Madrid public showed the Ballon d’Or holder display his freestyle tricks.
Concealing his identity, the Portugal star, showed off his skills, interacting with passers by. He hoped to find someone join him in his little fun. He was ignored (most of us would have). One passing pretty lady even rejected Ronaldo’s request for her number (quite sad).
Finally, a lad passing by joined the Potrugese star. ‘Show me what you’ve got’, Ronaldo told the young boy. We briefly Ronaldo display his dribbling skills before the young boy.  C.Ronaldo eventully strips off his disguise and presents the ball to the child, after signing his autograph. Afterwards, we see crowds flock around the star for pictures. The once beardless man who was initially ignored transitioned into the celebrity everyone wanted to get a glimpse of. What an irony of life!
I really do not care, if the video is for promotional purpose or not. What is certain is that, embedded in that video are real life lessons that everyone must take note of.
1) The world is full of fake people
The world is full of fake people who are not interested in the neighbour next door. We all are guilty of paying more attention to people who are in the limelight. Our hypocritical nature makes us go all the way to please people we consider celebrities and ignore the common man craving our attention. Some of us do not even know the name of our driver’s first son, or the name of our nanny. Most times, we call them, ‘Baba’ or ‘Mama’. Nobody recognizes you when you are a nobody.  The attention you get from people is all fake! At the end of the day, you are alone in your world
2) People only come to you for what you have to offer them
I have a lot of friends who are celebrities and I have witnessed first hand, the kind of attention they get from fans. These people are used to everyone coming to them for one need or the other. ‘Ha. Oga mi (My Oga), my father just passed away. I am going to the village for burial. Show your guy some love.’ ‘Hey boss! Na u we dey see for TV na. Drop something for the boys. I know sey you no break traffic rule.’
We all heard when Nigeria’s immediate past President, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan cried out during his last days in office that he knows that he will no longer have so many friends anymore once he steps out out of office.
Reuben Abati, a spokemn to President Goodluck Jonathan, in a recent article titled ‘The phones no longer ring’ wrote: ” Today, the phones remain loudly silent, with the exception of calls from those friends who are not gloating, who have been offering words of commendation and support. They include childhood friends, former colleagues,elderly associates, fans, and family members. And those who want interviews with President Jonathan, both local and international – they want his reaction on every development, so many of them from every part of the planet. But he is resting and he has asked me to say he is not ready yet to say anything. It is truly, a different moment, and indeed, “no condition is permanent.”
3) Do not look down on anyone
I have read different books and I have attended several seminars where they butressed the point that DO NOT LOOK DOWN ON ANYONE. You never can tell who is who. I have heard lots of interesting stories of people getting their dream jobs through the least expected kind of people – the gatemen, the drivers, the janitors and the likes. In our so busy and chaotic life, we tend to only appreciate people we know have something we want. It is not a bad idea to be objectively nice. Be good to everyone. Do something for someone who cannot repay you. Who knows, that person could be your key to unlocking your most important doors in life.
4) You are the most important person in your life. Whatever you choose to do with you is your business
I was once at a stage when the opinion  of everyone around me mattered. I was young, naive and vulnerable. I had to seek the permission of others before I could get anything done. It was really bad. People, being selfish in human nature, will pass negative comments on ideas I share with them. They killed every enthusiasm that had generated within me before I shared such ideas with them. At a point, I decided I was going to make only my opinion count. To hell with whoever is not pleased with my decisions. It was a huge risk but a major milestone for me. When I set out to start an online magazine, some people I looked up to called me names and passed all the pessimistic comments they had in their arsernal. I was not moved. I worked tiredlessly, surrounded myself with positive people, made all the sacrifices I could.  Although, I am yet to see my biggest dreams come true, I can say I am proud of what my team and I have achieved in the last three years. We have the number one Campus magazine in Nigeria –  online and print, an online TV channel and a successful awards event that celebrates outstanding young achievers – youths making impact accross the country. If I had listened to naysayers then, maybe none of these would have ever come to life. Do not forget that the most important person in your life is you. You are the master of your fate and the captain of your soul.
5) Love comes with benefits
Well, I am aware that many people despise the phrase, ‘Friends with benefits’. They often relate it with sex. Anyways, we all are entitled to our opinion. Whichever way you decide to term it, I indomitably belief that all relationships boil down to ‘Friends with benefits’. For Christ’s sake, why will you be my friend without adding value to me. I know what I bear and I will not be a blessing to you and watch you add value to my life. Satan be gone! Sweethearts, love comes with benefits.  Life is all about mutual benefits and partnerships;  being able to understand each other and sort out our differences. Only God’s love is Agape!
6) Always keep an open mind
No matter what you are going through, or what you have gone through. Multiple heartbreaks, loss of close ones, or jobs or other treasures, it is time to let go and keep an open mind. It is not over until it is over!
7) Live life loud!
Yipeee! Live life loud! The message is clear. Enjoy your life. Live responsibly.
Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent views of nor its associates

‘Man Utd Need A Superstar… But It Won’t Be Ronaldo’ – Van Gaal

The Real Madrid superstar has been heavily linked with a return to Old Trafford in recent weeks but the Dutchman says such a swoop is unlikely, while seeking a ‘creative’ player


Louis van Gaal says Manchester United need to sign a world-class “creative” player, but insists that Cristiano Ronaldo will not join the club this summer.

United have been heavily linked with a move for the Real Madrid superstar in recent weeks, with Van Gaal hinting at a “surprise signing” in attack.

United have embarked on a major summer recruitment drive, acquiring Morgan Schneiderlin, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Matteo Darmian and Memphis Depay, but Van Gaal is keen to add creativity to his squad.

Having spent in excess of £70 million already thus far, however, Van Gaal concedes that former club hero Ronaldo is out of his reach.

“We can use much more creativity,” he told reporters in the United States. “We have Wayne [Rooney], [Juan] Mata, [Memphis] Depay, [Ashley] Young, [Adnan] Januzaj, [James] Wilson, [Ander] Herrera. Young has had a fantastic season, but he is not a Neymar and we have to compete with that kind of class.

“When it is possible to buy, for a reasonable price, players from that level, we shall do that because they can contribute as they are better.

“Ronaldo? He may come, but it is not possible. Why not? Because you have the club [Real], Ronaldo and then you have Manchester United and how much Manchester United want to spend.”

The transfer window is set to shut in six weeks and Van Gaal maintains that the club must flex their considerable financial muscle if they are to mount a serious assault on the Premier League title in 2015-16.

Indeed, the Dutchman says that the club’s 1-0 defeat to Chelsea in April is serving as a motivation to recruit a player in the mould of Eden Hazard, who scored the winner at Stamford Bridge.

“Chelsea have Hazard,” Van Gaal added. “He can always make goals, he can always make an action and decide a goal. Chelsea also have Willian and Oscar. Manchester City have [Sergio] Aguero, it’s the same type. Barcelona has [Lionel] Messi, Neymar and [Luis] Suarez. We as Manchester United have to compete with these clubs, so we have to look also for that kind of players.

“You need creative players. You need that because you have to disorganise [teams that park] the bus and, next year, there might be more teams who are parking the bus, so we must look for more creativity.”

Van Gaal, though, is satisfied with his business thus far, and believes United are a better team now than they were when he took the reins at the club last season.

“With Morgan Schneiderlin, with Bastian Schweinsteiger, with Memphis Depay, with Matteo Darmian, we are better than last year. But we have to be much better and I say to you that means the creativity of my players in the front,” he said.

“At Chelsea, we didn’t score and they scored and that is the difference in the game. If we had won that game, the gap would have been five points and the pressure was high [on Chelsea].”

Cristiano Ronaldo Takes Lady On Dinner Date After Finding Her Lost Phone

A lady had the date of her dreams after her lost phone was found by Cristiano Ronaldo.It appears while partying over the weekend in Vegas, she lost her phone and he found it,contacted her and took her and her friends to dinner.The excited lady  Austin Woolstenhulme,took to social media to post pictures and share the good news.

‘Bad news is I lost my phone two days ago. Good news is Cristiano Ronaldo found it.
Better news is he took us to dinner last night.’

Lucky girl..

Cristiano Ronaldo Shows Off His Dance Moves Aboard Luxury Yacht

The 30 year old footballer was seen busting some moves aboard a yacht in St. Tropez. Cristiano was on board with his rumoured girlfriend Chloe Green, the Topshop heiress. The boat is owned by her dad, billionaire Sir Philip Green.

The Portuguese hunk happily showed off his honed footballer physique in all its glory and looks like he may have taught his buddies some of his moves. More photos below…


Redknapp: Bale Is Like Ronaldo – But He Must Sort Himself Out

Former Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp says Gareth Bale still reminds him of Cristiano Ronaldo, despite his current struggles at Real Madrid, but says he must “sort himself out”.

The 25-year-old has been booed by his own fans and criticised by the Spanish press on multiple occasions this season after an inconsistent run of form since the turn of the year.

Redknapp signed Bale from Southampton for Tottenham in 2007 and turned him from a left-back to a winger, and insisted last week that the Welshman remains one of the top five players in the world.

However, Redknapp believes Bale needs the freedom to roam if he is to return to his best.

He told AS: “For me, he’s like Cristiano. You’ve got to give him the ball; once he gets it, he’ll gain a yard, then two and put himself in a position where he can shoot with the kind of power that no one has – or dribble through defences which is something that only a few players do in today’s game. I’d give him all the freedom in the world.

“Both of them are players who like to roam freely, Bale slightly behind… They are players who feel more comfortable without any tactical restrictions. It would be amazing to see them both at full speed, 30 or 40 yards out and sprinting towards goal, running at defences.”

Redknapp has also refuted suggestions that Bale has encountered difficulties because of his inability to perform in the same team as Ronaldo, with the 68-year-old pointing to his performances last season as evidence.

He added: “When he left to join Madrid, I did worry that he might be left in Cristiano’s shadow. But he did well last season; playing in the role he was given. He scored some extraordinary goals.

“This year, I see he’s getting criticised. He has never received this amount of attention and maybe that’s affected him a little. But he’s got to get over it, be strong and believe that he can turn his situation around.”

Bale’s problems have drawn comparisons with his start to life at Tottenham, where he went 24 games before winning a game in the side, and Redknapp has warned the Wales international he must show great character if he is to bounce back.

“He needs to work hard, learn the language. He’s got to dive in head first,” he added. “It’s no good for him to be going over whether it would be better if he came back home. He’s at one of the greatest clubs in the world, if not the greatest. This is a man’s world and he’s got to sort himself out.

“Whenever he was a bit low and disheartened, I’d put my arms around his shoulders. ‘Give the ball to Gareth,’ I’d tell his team mates, in front of Gareth. ‘Today, every player out there was afraid of you,’ I’d tell him, ‘what a great player you are lad.’ I’d repeat that and Gareth would always respond well.”

Cristiano Ronaldo Named World’s Richest Footballer has named Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo as the wealthiest footballer in the world with a personal fortune of £152m, about £7m more than his rival, Lionel Messi (£145m). Neymar, comes third in the list with a fortune of £97.9m.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic of Paris Saint-Germain and Sweden is worth £76.1m, while Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney is the highest-ranked Englishman on the list in fifth on £74.6m.

Brazilian star Kaka who just signed to MLS club Orlando City, is sixth in the rankings on £69.6m, followed by Samuel Eto’o (£63.1m), Raul (£61.6m) and Ronaldinho (£60.2m).

Former Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard is in tenth with a personal fortune of £58m.

‘Messi Had Too Many Pizzas Last Season’ – Carles Rexach

After Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Ivan Rakitic fired their side to a 3-0 victory over Granada on Saturday, former Barcelona star Carles Rexach has hit out at Messi, claiming that the Argentine ate “too many pizzas last season”.

The 2013-14 campaign was an underwhelming one for the Argentine as he tallied his lowest number of goals since 2008-09 and Barca finished the campaign without a major trophy.

Rexach, who played for the Blaugrana from 1967-1981 and later coached the club, believes the attacker gained weight last year because he was eating too many pizzas.

“Before he would eat at the club and then rest afterwards, but it seems to me that last year Messi ate more pizzas than he wanted or needed,” Rexach told Regio7.

Has Cristiano Ronaldo Split With Girlfriend Irina Shayk? Model Unfollows Real Madrid Star On Twitter After Ballon d’Or No Show

Cristiano Ronaldo may have just won the Ballon d’Or for the second successive year in a row, but has the Real Madrid ace lost his trophy girlfriend?

The Portuguese star has reportedly been dumped by Russian beauty Irina Shayk, his partner of four years.

The 29-year-old supermodel was not in attendance as Ronaldo collected the award in Zurich on Monday, the third of his career.

And there was also no mention of the Russian in the Real Madrid striker’s acceptance speech, meaning rumours of their break up is rife.

Cristiano Ronaldo and Irina Shayk get close and share a joke during happier times 

Cristiano Ronaldo and Irina Shayk get close and share a joke during happier times

Irina has been sunning herself on the beach and was not in Zurich with Ronaldo
The Real Madrid ace scooped the third Ballon d'Or of his career but Irina was nowhere to be seen

Is this the end? Irina (left) was not in Zurich to see Ronaldo pick up his second succesive Ballon d’Or trophy

The duo were both in attendance when Ronaldo won the award last year, with the happy couple taking to social media afterwards to celebrate his achievements with fans.

However, this time round there was no words of congratulations from Irina, instead she is even believed to have unfollowed the former Manchester United man on Twitter.

Just weeks ago the Russian model fell out with Ronaldo’s mum over Christmas plans and it looks as though she may finally have had enough.

The couple have been together for the past four years, but it seems there may be trouble in paradise with rumours circulating that she had dumped the Real Madrid man

Ronaldo De Lima Considers Coming Out Of Retirement For The Love Of Football

Brazil legend Ronaldo, has admitted that he may come out of retirement and feature in some games for Fort Lauderdale Strikers, a North American Soccer League he co-owns.

Ronaldo, who won the FIFA World Player of the Year three times, has not played football since he left Corinthians in 2011.

Asked at a news conference if he would consider playing, the 38-year-old said: “That is not easy.

“I love to play, I love soccer, that was, all my life, my big love. When I retired, I stopped playing because of my body. So much pain and injuries.

“To play a soccer game you have to be in very good shape. I will try for myself, it’s another challenge. I am sure it will help the league, help the team.

“I will train a lot and, if the coach needs me, maybe.”

And he also told Sports Illustrated: “I will try to play some games. This year I want to train a lot. The last three years I didn’t, because I was too busy in other stuff.

Ronaldo Says His Son is a Messi Fan

Cristiano Ronaldo’s son Cris junior is a Lionel Messi fan the boy’s father said after they met up with the Argentina captain at the Ballon D’Or ceremony in Zurich on Monday.

After Ronaldo was named 2014 Ballon D’Or winner, beating four-time winner Messi into second place, the two players had a friendly exchange in the lobby of Zurich’s Kongresshaus when Cris pointed at Messi and then stood up to greet him.

Real Madrid’s Portugal captain Ronaldo told his arch-rival Messi: “He watches a video on the internet of all of us and he talks about you,” prompting a coy reaction from his son. Barcelona forward Messi chuckled and asked the young Cristiano how he was doing. “You are embarrassed now!” Ronaldo then laughed to his son.

Ronaldo received his third Ballon D’Or on Monday with the Portuguese or Messi having won the award every year since 2008.

Credit: Reuters

I Regret Voting Ronaldo For Ballon d’Or Award – Lewandowski

Bayern Munich attacker Robert Lewandowski has rued his decision to pick Cristiano Ronaldo in the Fifa Ballon d’Or vote ahead of Manuel Neuer.

The Poland skipper gave the Real Madrid star five points ahead of his Bayern team-mates Neuer and Bastian Schweinsteiger, but he now feels the Germany goalkeeper would have been a better choice in hindsight.

Neuer eventually ended third in the running for the prize with 15.72 per cent of the votes, just 0.04 per cent behind Lionel Messi, while 37.66 per cent picked Ronaldo.

“Voting for Ronaldo instead of Neuer was a mistake,” Lewandowski was quoted as saying by Welt.

“I would clearly vote for Neuer now if I had the chance. But I already cast my vote back in August or something. I would vote differently now.

“I am sorry for Manu. I am really surprised that he did not even come in second and the big gap to Ronaldo also baffles me. Manuel is an amazing goalkeeper and person.”

Neuer was one of four Bayern Munich players to make the top 10, with Arjen Robben (fourth), Thomas Muller (fifth), Philipp Lahm (sixth) all earning a spot among the world’s best, too.

Barcelona To Snub Ballon d’Or Ceremony As Bartomeu Cuts Fifa Ties

Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu has announced that he will boycott the Ballon d’Or ceremony as part of a severing of ties with Fifa.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has upheld Fifa’s decision to ban Barca from making any signings in the next two transfer windows (starting this January) for irregularities over bringing youngsters into academy, La Masia.

As a result, the Blaugrana are giving world football’s governing body the cold shoulder and Bartomeu, who remains convinced that the decision will be overturned, says that he will not attend the event in Zurich despite Lionel Messi’s nomination for the top prize.

“Fifa has not told us who made the original charge and during the period of the sanction we will not maintain any institutional relations with them,” Bartomeu said at a press conference.

“I have sent a stern letter to Sepp Blatter and I will not be attending the Fifa Ballon d’Or gala set for January 12.

“This is not the end of the matter. I foresee the Barca case becoming a watershed in the football world, just like the Bosman case. However long it lasts, we will not lose this case.”

While Messi is among the final three nominees for the 2014 Ballon d’Or, a number of Barcelona stars are candidates to be named in the Fifa FIFPro World XI for their performances in the past year.

Claudio Bravo, Jordi Alba, Dani Alves, Javier Mascherano, Gerard Pique, Xavi, Andres Iniesta, Luis Suarez, Neymar and Messi are all on the final shortlist.

The Banalities Of Attacking Football; Defending Is A Greater Nub Of The Game

Football is a game of goals–a hackneyed statement with bifurcated interpretations. While a group contends that what is more important in football is scoring goals, the other maintains that defending goals is more important, hence the attacking school of thought and the defending school of thought, respectively. A tangency of the two schools however, is that the other aspect is also important but with relatively less weight.
‘’A team will not lose a match as long as it does not concede a goal; the worst result can only be a draw.’’ This is the philosophy that underpins the tactical substance of the defensive school of thought. This stance reveals that it is not enough for victory that a team scores goals but with an unconvincing rearguard, because cases abound to show that such teams are likelier to lose a match than a team with defensive solidity that does not concede a goal in the match. A combination of a good day for an attack and a bad day for a defense is likelier to result in a defeat than a combination of a good day for a defense and a bad day for an attack; the worst in the latter case is a draw! A team may not necessarily have to win every game, thus, the assertion that ‘’football is about winning’’ is not absolutely correct because the reality is that a team may not win every game, especially in a league competition. A more accurate assertion should be ‘football is about not losing.’ After all, the famous Arsenal “Invincibles” did not win every single game in the 2003/04 season; they were invincible because they did not lose any match!
There is hardly a gainsaying that an attack that gives a 2, 3, 4 goal advantage in a match may be adjudged to have delivered on its mandate; unfortunately however, this advantage is not enough to seal a victory. Incidentally, the greater onus of ensuring victory from a game lies on the defense. It has a more decisive duty of protecting the advantage by preventing goals, failure of which may mean a squander of such advantage.
To substantiate the above illustration where huge advantages evaporated into thin air owing to defensive frailties, the following cases come handy: Newcastle vs Arsenal (9th of Feb, 2011), Germany vs Sweden (16th of October, 2012), Arsenal vs Liverpool (30th of Jan, 2013), Everton vs Liverpool (28th of October, 2012),to mention but a few. On the other hand, an uncharacteristic ten-man Arsenal defensive solidity against a threatening Sunderland side on the 9th of February, 2013, to seal a hard fought victory goes to accentuate the significance of a strong defense in ensuring an eventual winner.
A quite different scenario which also reinforces the greater essence of defending is the last season first-leg Champions league match between Arsenal and B. Munich at the Emirates. At half time, the visitors were leading by two goals but the Gunners pulled one back in the early part of the second half and followed it with heavier attacking pressure on the Bayern’s defense but the Germans understood the superiority of the defensive philosophy, they were able to effectively contain the threats that came their way. On the other hand, Arsenal gave their ‘all’ to the attacking advances but haplessly compromised their defensive discipline. The implication of which was a Bayern’s sloppy third goal which effectively attenuated Arsenal’s earlier attacking threats.
The point worthy of note here is that, no matter the hunger for goals in a football match, defensive discipline and solidity remains effectively more important otherwise a flash of defensive frailty may cost a leading team its victory or turn a once sharp and threatening side into a psychologically weak and blunt team due to unnecessary concession of goals.
Another recent example which practically demonstrates the superiority of a defensive philosophy was the Champions league match between A.C. Milan and Barcelona, at the San siro. The Catalans are famous for their sharp attacking spears while the Rosonerri went into the game with a defensive game plan: try as much as possible not to concede a goal. As long as A.C. Milan kept preventing Barcelona from scoring, they knew they always had a chance—the worst for them would have been a draw and not a defeat! However, two of the rare occasions when A.C. Milan threatened the Barcelona defense led to goals. The Rosonerri capitalized on the frailties of the Catalan’s defense, situations that saw the Barcelona defense scampering like a ‘mertersacker’! The bugaboo of failing to score an away goal, magnified by the inordinacy of attacking football, turned them into an effigy of the old Barcelona.
Arsenal, a miniature of Barcelona, is equally known for attacking sharpness. One may not have to worry about their ability to score goals but what is rather often likely is that they could score three goals but concede four goals, and end up losing the match. A perennial albatross of the Arsenal team in recent years is poor defending, which has effectively made them mere ‘participants’ and not competitors/challengers in every league. Arsenal’s case is a major corroboration to the philosophy that defending is more important than attacking in a football match afterall.
In the modern climate, defending is not necessarily the sole responsibility of the ‘back four’, it is a duty of the whole team but ultimately rests on the ‘back four’. Ipso facto, ‘’…the best form of defense is to attack…’’ is an incorrect statement; a correctly modified assertion would be ‘’…the best form of defense begins from the attack…’’ (i.e.,’’…close them down, high up the field…’’). The difference between the two assertions is that the former talks about what to do when a team has the ball, while the latter talks about what to do when a team is not in possession of the ball. The defensive contribution of the likes of Van Persie, Messi, Silva, Rooney, Wilshere, Ronaldo, Suarez, etc., when their teams are chasing the ball is of great importance. The overall performance of Di Maria in Real Madrid’s emphatic win over an often soporific Barcelona, in last season’s 2nd leg Copa del rey Semifinal at Camp Nou, is emblematic of the point being made here.
For the avoidance of doubt, the defensive philosophy does not necessarily depreciate the idea of scoring goals. Infact, it considers it to be a very strong condition for winning a match.
Jose Mourinho, who incidentally seems to be a juggernaut of defensive philosophy, has led his club(s) to win its domestic league seven times, the UEFA Champions league twice, and the UEFA Cup once; between 2002 and 2013, he had not gone through a full season without winning at least one trophy. He obviously did not achieve all of these, in ten seasons of club management, without scoring goals. As a matter of fact, he is widely known as a man of immediate impact in a strange environment!
Mourinho has been heavily criticized by those who label his philosophy as ‘negative football’ but while he has remained impervious to such criticisms, he has often described his critics as a people who do not understand football. It is my view that Jose Mourinho is a manager with a lot of cards who astutely knows how and when to play each of his cards. This explains why he has been described by many pundits and aficionados, as one of the greatest tacticians of the game.
Besides, the fact that his former side—Real Madrid—arguably had the deadliest attacking force in club football in the present climate, effectively defeats the arguments of his critics. Such negative football-tagged criticism against a ‘Special One’ who led Real Madrid to a record of 121 goals scored in the 2011-12 season, can only be described as utterly shitty and uncharitable. His current Chelsea side are currently reinforcing the primacy of defending as they grind out 3-points from each match even if it were by a one-goal victory.
For such critics who ignorantly sing the song of a phantom ‘entertaining football’, they are advised to quickly take a membership card at the Emirates and endlessly savour their barren ‘entertaining football’ or betterstill, shift their fanship to Hollywood. The champion is the team that lifts the trophy at the end of the season, and that is the chief justification for the millions of pounds that travel the financial accounts trajectory of the transfer markets. Beat me in my own game is the message to the champions!
There is no such thing as universally acceptable style of football. What is acceptable is what is suitable, and suitability is best defined in the context of individual matches. It takes only tactically clever managers to know this!
Finally, the superiority of a defensive philosophy also reveals the myopia of the Ballon d’or award. It has become a rather disturbing reality that the Ballon d’or has been reduced to the Golden Boot award. It has sadly been restricted to the highest goal scorer and no longer the best player, and that explains the long, boring, and monotonous arguments about Messi versus Ronaldo. Sadly, these arguments are often loaded with the number of goals each of them has scored, and that edges one over the other. Goals now seem to be the principal criterion for the Ballon d’or, and sadly so. Ballon d’or is supposed to be an award for the best player, the most consistent player, and not necessarily the highest goal scorer! What happened to the midfielders, the defenders, and even the goalkeepers? What happened to Wesley Sneijder in 2006? It is still unfathomable why Andres Iniesta has not won the accolade. It is obvious that the doyens of the Ballon d’or are in dire need of the 2006 periscope!

Adesanya Segun
@omoluwabidada (Twitter)

My Girlfriends Obsession For My Boxers Makes Her Steal Them – CR7

Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo, has revealed that his model girlfriend Irina Shayk, has developed a funny obsession for his CR7 boxers and her wardrobe is full of them.

The Portugal captain, who launched his range of underwear in October 2013, was asked “What item in your wardrobe does your girlfriend steal” by Vogue.

His response was: “She steals my boxers all the time. She wasn’t in the house and I opened her wardrobe and there were many CR7 boxers. It is funny.”

Ronaldo is currently on duty with Madrid at the Club World Competition in Marrakech, Morroco.

Ronaldo On Track To Beat Messi’s Record Of 73 goals In A Season

Real Madrid‘s Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona‘s Lionel Messi continue to exchange heavyweight blows in their relentless pursuit of records.

During a remarkable spell in November, the Argentine scored successive trebles to become the all-time top scorer in both La Liga and the Champions League, beating his great rival to Raul’s mark in the process.

Last weekend, both hit incredible domestic milestones. On Sunday, Messi became the first player to reach 400 goals in La Liga with a hat-trick in the derby against Espanyol. Less than 24 hours earlier, Ronaldo had scored a treble of his own to bring up a personal tally of 200 in Spain’s top flight.

While the former Manchester United man might trail the South American in Primera Division strikes, he has established himself as the favourite to win the 2014 Ballon d’Or thanks to a remarkable domestic scoring streak.

In his 13 league appearances this season, Ronaldo has been shut out only by Malaga. While this in itself is a staggering statistic, the sheer weight of goals from the 29-year-old is even more astounding. He has 23 to his credit at a rate of close to two a game.

Throw in four more goals in the Champions League and another two from the Uefa Super Cup, and Ronaldo is on course to break Messi’s record of 73 club goals in a single season.

When that was achieved by the Argentine in 2011-12, it was a total that seemed impossible to reach. Although the Portuguese has played 21 times already this season, there are still potentially a further 40 games in which he could feature, should Madrid go all the way in the Copa del Rey, Champions League and Club World Cup.

Ronaldo’s current strike-rate equates to 1.38 goals a game. If he was to maintain that standard for the duration of a 61-match campaign, he would finish 2014-15 with 84 club goals.

“Ronaldo is doing very well at that moment, he is extraordinarily motivated and physically he is at his peak,” coach Carlo Ancelotti said of his star man at the weekend.

Of course, it is impossible for even a player of Ronaldo’s standard to remain in prime condition over the course of an entire season – and there is also the possibility of injury, too.

The Portuguese has given himself a healthy margin for error, however, as he chases down perhaps the most remarkable record in the modern game.  

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