- Dirty Tackle14 hrs ago
In the world of The Mighty Zlatan Ibrahimovic, anything is possible. Not only does the talismanic Swede constantly defy the rules of physics with his acrobatic goals and assists, but he is also delivering a flying kick to the face of social media.
The team behind Ibra's brilliant Twitter accountappear to be planning something for Monday, as the star has insisted that he needs more than 140 characters to express himself for some kind of announcement/literary masterpiece/free-form anti-Guardiola poetry.
He has demanded the micro-blogging site alter its constraining word limit, asking them to #DareToZlatan in the process:
Zlatan loves nothing more than speaking about himself in the third person, and sometimes the media gently mocks him by using his name as a verb. Now, the Paris Saint-Germain star is owning that too:
- Dirty Tackle18 hrs ago
See the incident from [0.40]
Sydney FC were 3-1 victors in a heated derby against defending A-League Premier Plate holders Western Sydney Wanderers on Saturday, fighting back from a 1-0 deficit in the second half. The turning point of the game came when a penalty was saved by Sydney goalkeeper Vedran Janjetovic after an impressive psyche-out.
When the 51st-minute spot kick was awarded, the Croatian shot stopper made the unusual decision to tell Wanderers striker Mark Bridge exactly where to place it. As you can see in the video above , he points to his left side several times and Janjetovic even claims he told Bridge to shoot towards that side of the goal.
The dare completely rattled the striker, who ended up trying to call his bluff by putting the ball exactly where he was told. The result was a missed opportunity to go 2-0 up and an eventual 3-1 loss.
Janjetovic shouted over the noise of the titanium spheres in his shorts clanging against each other to tell local reportersabout his psyche-out:
”I just challenged him to put it to my left,” jubilant Janjetovic said later.
- Dirty Tackle3 days ago
During a Vietnamese league match in February, Song Lam Nghe An defender Tran Dinh Dong put in a crunching tackle on Hung Vuong An Giang midfielder Nguyen Anh Hung.
Nguyen broke his leg and will be out of action for up to a year, but his assailant will also be facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines as the Vietnam Football Federation (VFF) has handed him a hefty 28-game ban.
The 26-year-old defender was also fined 20m dong ($950) and ordered to cover Nguyen's medical costs. The BBC quotes a VFF statement which explains the reason for the exceptionally harsh ban:
"The punishment is meant to be a warning to players throughout the nation, where violent behaviour on the field has gradually become more popular."
Clearly, this punishment will be a deterrent, but it is a startling reflection of the inconsitency of bans in football: apparently a leg-breaking challenge is worth the same penalty as nearly sixNicolas Anelka anti-Semitic gestures.
- Dirty Tackle4 days ago
Argentina played out a goalless draw with Romania in Bucharest on Wednesday, with Leo Messi unable to find the net because he was marked out of the game by a resilient home side.
The match didn't get off to a great start for the Barcelona star, as he was seen doubling over and throwing up after just seven minutes of play.
The Albiceleste captain powered through and played the full 90 minutes, but this is by no means the first time he has struggled to keep his dinner down on the field.
El Pulga yacked up during the 2011 Spanish Super Cup against Real Madrid, he blew chunks during a high-altitude clash with Bolivia in March 2013 and he dry heaved like he had just seen Arsene Wenger in lingerie during a game with Levante last August.
At this rate, the World Cup in Brazil is going to need more sawdust than Disney World.
- - - - - - -
- Ryan Bailey at Dirty Tackle6 days ago
Torquay United are based in the south-west of England where there are relatively few clubs, so loyal fans usually face a lengthy trip whenever they wish to travel to an away game.
On Saturday, 91 Gulls fans made the 370-mile journey all the way up to Hartlepool, only to witness a 3-0 defeat that has left them rock bottom of League Two and facing the ugly prospect of dropping out of the Football League.
Torquay manager Chris Hargreaves felt sympathy for the travelling fans who watched their side capitulate in the middle of a 740-mile round trip and has offered to soften the blow by buying each of them a drink. The Torquay Herald Express reports:
Hargreaves said he ‘gave a couple of fans £20 to get themselves a pint on the way home’ after Saturday’s defeat, which left his side languising at the bottom of League Two.
“It was the least I could do,” said Hargreaves, who now wants to buy every supporter a drink this week – in combination with a Q&A at the Boots and Laces pub at Plainmoor on Wednesday (7pm).
- Ryan Bailey at Dirty Tackle8 days ago
Skip to [1.35] to see the second own goal
Eintracht Braunschweig — who are rock bottom of the Bundesliga in their first season in the German top flight for 28 years — hosted Borussia Monchengladbach on Saturday. It was a peculiar game, in which the 1-1 scoreline was the result of calamitous own goals from both goalkeepers.
In the 24th minute, Braunschweig keeper Daniel Davari should have collected Raffael Araújo's corner, but instead allowed it cannon off of his own thigh into the back of the net.
In the second half, Marc-André ter Stegen made his opposite number feel a little better when he struggled to control a harmless back pass from defender Filip Daems. The Gladbach keeper watched in horror as the ball bounced over his foot, then gently rolled over the line for an equalizer. From the replay, it is clear that the back pass was not even headed for the goal before the keeper touched it.
- Ryan Bailey at Dirty Tackle9 days ago
After being thoroughly under-utilized in David Moyes' Manchester Utd team, Shinji Kagawa has had to resort to playing football against imaginary samurais in Japanese beer commercials now.
In a new clip for Kirin beer, the Red Devils midfielder arrives home to his tiny apartment wearing a suit and tie and heads to the fridge for a cold one. Realism then takes a backseat as Kagawa is transported to a field where he faces several samurai warriors.
Wearing all that armour, they run even slower than Kagawa's teammates against Olympiakos earlier this week, allowing the Japan midfielder to score a solo goal and return to his apartment to enjoy a refreshing Kirin on his knees.
Perhaps the excitable adventure that occurs every time he retrieves items from the fridge is the reason why he had to get his stomach pumped in December after eating too much.
- Ryan Bailey at Dirty Tackle10 days ago
Bayern Munich held an open training session on Wednesday, at which 1,500 fans were privy to the practise drills and warm-ups that can put a team 19 points clear at the top of the Bundesliga.
The fans in attendance also bore witness to the kind of crunching tackle that probably shouldn't be practised in training. During a passing drill, Mario Mandzukic got a little feisty in his attempt to dispossess Bastian Schweinsteiger with a two-footed lunge that landed nowhere near the ball.
Schweini was left in a heap on the ground, clutching the left ankle that had just had an encounter with two sets of studs. Die Roten’s assistant coach Hermann Gerland immediately came over to call the physios, who proceeded to stuff ice down his sock.
Fortunately, the injury was not too serious: even though he was limping afterwards, Bild report that Schweinsteiger was practising free kicks at the end of the session. The rash challenge also managed to avoid damage with his right ankle, upon which he recently had surgery.
- Ryan Bailey at Dirty Tackle11 days ago
When promoting a new Hollywood movie in Spain, it is not enough to simply tease folks with a trailer. In fact, you don't need to show any of the movie at all: just get some famous footballers to dress up as the protagonist.
Our friends at sport.es have uncovered a thoroughly bizarre new commercial which promotes forthcoming reboot sequel The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (known as Spider-Man 2: The Power of Electro in Spain) and a mobile phone manufacturer.
First, we see Barcelona goalkeeper Victor Valdes and his Real Madrid equivalent Diego Lopez firing shots at each other while dressed as Spidey. Then, while standing on the ceiling, Valdes gets a call that is actually for Lopez — Why? Are they friends? Does Lopez's phone not work upside down? — but both defy their reputation for having safe hands by dropping it into one of those open drums full of water that are often found in abandoned warehouses.
This incident tickles Alvaro Arbeloa's Spidey Senses, but he does absolutely nothing before the keepers drive off in some Porsches, just like Spider-Man would.
- Ryan Bailey at Dirty Tackle12 days ago
Ravan Baku are rock bottom of the Azerbaijan Premier League, so when Lukasz Sapela saved a penalty at the home of high-flying Gabala on Sunday, the Polish goalkeeper celebrated like a plucky underdog. Well, a plucky underdog who repeatedly gave an "up yours" gesture to the home crowd as a means of celebrating his own achievement.
Evidently, the referee didn't take kindly to the potentially inflammatory behaviour, issuing Sapela with a red card. Ravan were forced to play out the final 16 minutes of the match with ten men, but they managed to hold on for a 0-0 draw.
- - - - - - -