France Football released the 30-man shortlist for the Ballon d’Or award given to the world’s best player. As expected in a EURO year, there are several Portuguese standouts to go with the usual suspects. There are also some odd omissions. Alexis Sanchez was Arsenal’s second-leading scorer as the Gunners finished second in the Premier League, and the South American attacker scored three goals as Chile won its second-straight Copa America, this one on American soil. It’s baffling that he’s not on the list. N'Golo Kante enjoyed a season as the engine of the best story in Premier League history, manning the midfield for Leicester, and followed it up by helping France reach the EURO 2016 final. Pretty
Of the six teams remaining in Major League Soccer’s Eastern Conference, you could argue there are three distinct pairings. You have red-hot traditional sides in DC United and the New York Red Bulls; There are the big-name driven, deep squads from Toronto FC and New York City FC, and finally the two relative unknowns truly deserving of “wildcard” status in the Philadelphia Union Montreal Impact. Sure, the table tends to tell us who’s who in the pecking order. It’s hard to bet against the Red Bulls seeing they haven’t lost since July 3, and Frank Lampard has somehow quietly been a wrecking ball thanks to dynamite performances from captain David Villa and world-class maestro Andrea Pirlo. But there
South American football confederation CONMEBOL said on Monday it is suing American sponsorship partners ISM for $18 million in the continuing fall-out from a world football corruption scandal. "CONMEBOL has opened a process with New York State to cancel its contract with International Soccer Marketing Inc. (ISM) for the exclusive management of Copa Libertadores sponsors and is claiming $18 million," said CONMEBOL in a statement. The move comes after an ISM chief admitted to American prosecutors that the company paid bribes to former CONMEBOL officials to gain the exclusive rights to manage those sponsorship contracts.