- Brooks Peck at Dirty Tackle7 hrs ago
Borussia Dortmund started the Champions League group stage by beating Arsenal 2-0 and Jurgen Klopp couldn't have been happier. "We did what we had to do to win this game and for us, it was near perfection," he said afterwards. "I enjoyed this game from the first second to the last. It’s hard work all the time but when you see games like this, it’s the best job in the world.”
This degree of pure bliss is rare in life, let alone in football. So how was Klopp able to achieve it for 90 whole minutes? By following these steps...
1. Dress comfortably
- Brooks Peck at Dirty Tackle13 hrs ago
The Seattle Sounders have won their fourth US Open Cup in six years of existence after beating the Philadelphia Union 3-1 in extra time. Philadelphia's Maurice Edu opened the scoring in front of the home fans in the 38th minute, but Seattle's Chad Barrett equalized shortly after halftime. The score held at 1-1 until extra time, when Sounders captain Clint Dempsey put them ahead in the 101st minute. Obafemi Martins then finished the game off with Seattle's third goal in the 114th minute.
This marks the first trophy in Clint Dempsey's decade old club career, having previously won the 2005 and 2007 Gold Cups with the U.S. team. In 2010, the U.S. captain helped Fulham make an unlikely run to the Europa League final, but they lost to Atletico Madrid. Now, perhaps fittingly, he has lifted his country's 100-year-old domestic cup.
With one cup now in the cabinet this season, Seattle turn their attention back to MLS, where they top the Western Conference and have already clinched a playoff spot. A domestic treble of the US Open Cup, MLS Supporters' Shield and MLS Cup wouldn't be a bad way to round out Dempsey's first full season with Seattle.
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- Brooks Peck at Dirty Tackle16 hrs ago
Bulgarian club Ludogorets Razgrad qualified for the Champions League group stage for the first time thanks to defender Cosmin Moti stepping in as goalkeeper and saving not one, but two shots in a penalty shootout. For 81 minutes they held Liverpool scoreless at Anfield. But then Mario Balotelli happened.
Demonstrating superb ball control while clearing space for himself between two defenders in the box, Balotelli scored his first Liverpool goal with an 82nd-minute volley that seemed as if it would be enough to start their Champions League campaign with three points.
Ludogorets again demonstrated their taste for the improbable by scoring an equalizer in the first minute of injury time, though. Taking a point at Anfield would have been incredible for the Bulgarian champions, who reached the Europa League round of 16 last season, but a foul by newly signed third-choice goalkeeper Milan Borjan in the second minute of injury time set up a penalty that Steven Gerrard didn't miss.
- Brooks Peck at Dirty Tackle20 hrs ago
The Champions League group stage has begun and Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny seems a bit confused about what sport he's supposed to be playing. Early in the first half of his side's match against Borussia Dortmund, Koscielny decided he would rather be playing volleyball and spiked the ball like someone who has seen Top Gun too many times.
Koscielny wasn't punished for this because a foul was called on a Dortmund player. Later in the half, Koscielny was responsible for Ciro Immobile's opening goal. Other than all that, he actually was playing quite well, though.
Dortmund went on to win 2-0.
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- Brooks Peck at Dirty Tackle22 hrs ago
FC Muri goalkeeper Reto Felder has threatened to sue Baden fans who urinated in his water bottle, which he then drank from, during a Swiss fourth division match. The fans somehow convinced a ball boy to give them the bottle and then put it back when they were finished sullying it. And that's when the 34-year-old keeper had the least refreshing beverage of his life.
From the Guardian:
“I have never experienced anything like it, said Felder of the fans, who also shouted “now you will get Aids”. “That is just primitive filth,” he said. “I took one sip and realised that it was warm but thought that it was because of the sun. But by the second sip I realised that something was wrong.”
THE SECOND SIP! He took one sip, noticed the warmth as the only thing that was off about the waste fluid in his mouth, and then took another sip and realized, "Yep, this is human urine in my mouth."
Rio Ferdinand has a new autobiography entitled #2Sides. Sadly, the hashtag is not a typo. It should also be noted that the book only presents one side. Rio Ferdinand's side.
The plumbing of new depths in terrible book titles aside, Ferdinand has taken this opportunity to become the first former Man United player to publicly air his grievances with ex-manager David Moyes (for financial gain). The following is a list of Moyes horrors that the current QPR defender felt compelled to put in print.
Negative tactics: You didn't have to play for Manchester United to realize that Moyes' tactics were markedly different from Sir Alex Ferguson's and his six home losses (Man United's most in 12 years) were a consequence of that.
Gus Johnson, the most criticized soccer commentator in the United States, has told Sports Illustrated that he has decided to step down as Fox's top commentator for the sport, citing his busy schedule covering basketball and American football and a desire to spend time with his new wife.
Johnson was well known for his shouty style of broadcasting before Fox decided to try and fit his square peg into a round hole in an apparent effort to Americanize UEFA Champions League broadcasts and appeal to non-fans of the game. The hope was that he would lead their coverage for the 2018 World Cup, but all he actually did was enrage fans with mispronounced names, ill-timed shrieks and an inadequate base of knowledge while making no discernible inroads in attracting new viewers.
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez just doesn't know when to stop, so he celebrating his club's long awaited 10th European Cup with significant turnover. Bringing in the likes of James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos while selling off Angel Di Maria and Xabi Alonso has shaken up the team and the early returns haven't been good.
Two losses in their first three matches — the most recent being a second straight home loss to Atletico Madrid for the first time ever — have caused frustrations to start boiling over.
Gareth Bale's refusal to stop and sign autographs for waiting fans as he left training on Monday prompted a couple of grown men to kick at his white Bentley. Because scoring important goals in both the Copa del Rey and Champions League finals apparently wasn't enough to earn their respect.
Elsewhere, ultras hung banners on overpasses in the city calling for Perez to be ousted.
Ultras Sur pone estas pancartas en la M - 30 pic.twitter.com/r9SlH3yyR8
- Brooks Peck at Dirty Tackle2 days ago
Despite all the talk of white elephants and misused government money, there is at least one good thing to come of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
Though Japan didn't win a match in Brazil, its fans won the respect of the world by cleaning up their section of each stadium they attended after the games were over. And now fans of one Brazilian club have adopted the practice.
Following a 2-0 win over Vitoria at the Arena da Baixada in Curitiba — one of the World Cup host venues built for the tournament — a large number of Atletico-PR supporters stayed to pick up trash in the stands. According to Globo, the club provided 20,000 trash bags, which the fans dutifully filled and piled up.
- Brooks Peck at Dirty Tackle2 days ago
Whenever a foreign player moves to the Premier League, there's always talk of how they will need time to get acclimated to the unmatched power and speed of it. As if nothing short of spending a year in a NASA space shuttle launch simulator could possibly prepare anyone for the unimaginable difference between the Premier League and anything else masquerading as professional football.
Well, Diego Costa responds to this notion with a defiantly uncaring shrug. Since joining Chelsea from Atletico Madrid, he has scored seven goals in his first four Premier League matches — including a hat trick in Saturday's 4-2 win against Swansea. Obviously the transition has been about as taxing as putting on pants before having a pizza delivered.
Of course, scoring goals for Chelsea hasn't been easy for every pricy striker of the Roman Abramovich era. Andriy Shevchenko and the recently shipped out Fernando Torres are the two examples that immediately come to mind, so Sky Sports put together a handy graphic that shows just how much better at scoring goals Costa has been.