EPL Talk Archives for January 2013

WATCH: Belgium’s Best Moments of Their Qualification Campaign For World Cup 2014 [VIDEO]

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Belgium footballers and supporters have a lot to look forward to in 2014 after a successful 2013 year where they qualified for the World Cup.

One Belgium supporter has taken it upon himself to create a trailer to generate even more enthusiasm for his nation's soccer team. Even if you're not a supporter of Belgium, the following video certainly gets you excited to see what the team can do next summer.

Norwich City Are Taking A Calculated Risk By Sticking With Chris Hughton

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Chris Hughton is by all accounts one of the nicest men in English football. His demeanor and actions as a gentleman have made neutrals like I root for his sides whenever the clubs we support are not playing against a team he manages. As a fan of his, I was very excited by the signings made this summer by Norwich — players who seemingly could transform the Canaries into contenders for a European place.

US TV/Internet Schedule Revealed For This Weekend’s FA Cup Third Round Games

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The third round of the FA Cup, the oldest soccer competition in the world, kicks off this weekend featuring several Premier League and Football League teams, with several of the key matches scheduled to be aired live on US television and/or Internet.

Founded in 1871, the FA Cup will be beamed around the world.

WATCH: Arsenal’s Highs Reached During An Impressive 2013 Year [VIDEO]

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The length of time that this video will stay online on YouTube will probably equal the number of hours that Liverpool were top of the Premier League on Christmas Day before Arsenal dislodged them, so if you're an Arsenal supporter it's imperative that you watch the video as soon as possible before it is removed from the powers that be.

Aston Villa Suffering An All Too Familiar Slide Down the Premier League Table Under Paul Lambert

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At the beginning of the season, I tipped Aston Villa to push its way into the top half of the table. All started well with an improbable victory at the Emirates and a highly controversial 2-1 loss at Stamford Bridge. But beginning that Saturday in a loss to Liverpool at Villa Park, Paul Lambert's side have been less than convincing at home and have, after a promising start, plunged again too close to the relegation zone for comfort.

More Than 700K Watch Manchester City vs Liverpool On NBCSN to Set Boxing Day Record

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NBCSN's live broadcast of Manchester City against Liverpool on December 26 was viewed by an average of 704,000 people, the highest figure ever for a Boxing Day Premier League match shown on US television.

The Manchester City-Liverpool match was shown live beginning at 12:30pm ET on Thursday, the day after Christmas.

Tottenham Hotspur Announce Plans for US Summer 2014 Tour

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Tottenham Hotspur are the first Premier League side to announce plans for a summer 2014 tour of the United States.

The north London club will be heading to the United States for the third time in the past five years to play a series of friendly matches on US soil. The club has confirmed July fixtures against Seattle Sounders and Chicago Fire.

FOX Soccer Daily Temporarily Off The Air As Execs Evaluate Show, Says Source

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FOX Soccer Daily, FOX's daily soccer news show that launched August 19, has temporarily been taken off the air for 4-6 weeks so FOX executives can evaluate the format and talent in order to determine what changes are needed to improve the ratings, according to a World Soccer Talk source close to the show.

Jose Mourinho’s Cleverly Narcissistic Mind Games Prove A Winning Formula For Chelsea

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On paper, Chelsea have arguably the strongest and deepest squad in the Premier League and one of the best squads in Europe. The quality in the squad is unmistakable. Yet Jose Mourinho, driven largely by narcissism and the need to be loved, publicly belittled his squad's worth repeatedly as a psychological ploy.

Logic Dictates That Manchester United Will Not Add A ‘Marquee’ Signing In January

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The madness of the January transfer window is about to begin and clubs are already being linked with moves to improve their squads. Most experts would agree that Manchester United is the club that has the largest holes to fill. The club's failures to add quality to its midfield/defense during the summer transfer window is well-documented and most feel that United must spend heavily in January if they are to have any chance at finishing in the top four; or as title contenders.

World Soccer Talk’s World Best XI Footballers Of 2013

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World Soccer Talk has selected its best starting XI featuring the best-of-the-best world footballers from the 2013 calendar year.

There were many difficult choices all around the pitch for us but this is the team we've come up with using a 25 man squad.

Starting XI:

Neuer

Alaba Mertasacker Thiago Silva Lahm

Riberry Vidal Pogba Ronaldo

Suarez Messi

Bench:Enyeama, Robben, Rooney, Bale, Yaya Toure, Dante, Lewandowski

Remainder of the squad: De Gea, Ramsey, Chiellini, Diego Costa, Van Persie, Busquets, DiMaria

Agree?

Hull City Put Tom Huddlestone’s Hair On eBay to Raise Money For Charity

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Hull City have put locks of Tom Huddlestone's hair on an eBay auction to raise money for charity.

During Saturday's match between Hull City and Fulham, Huddlestone scored his first goal after making his pledge more than one year ago to cut his hair once he scored again. The Hull City midfielder quickly ran to the touchline and got his hair snipped by one of Hull City's coaching staff.

Cardiff City Keen On Paul Ince If Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Turns Down Vincent Tan: Daily Soccer Report

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Cardiff City are interested in signing Paul Ince as the manager to replace Malky Mackay if Ole Gunnar Solskjaer turns down an approach from club owner Vincent Tan, according toThe Daily Mailnewspaper.

The newspaper reports that Cardiff City Chairman Mehmet Dalman is planning on having more talks with Solskjaer's representatives today, while sources close to Tan reveal that Paul Ince is a possibility.

Arsenal First-Last (EPL Talk Review Podcast)

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The half-way point of the season and frankly: we're only a little clearer on who could be challenging for a title at this point. 9 and 9 separate the top and bottom 10s, if that makes sense. So where is best to be in the table? Who deserves to be higher and who has been unlucky through Christmas? And with the table changing so rapidly, what is a good indicator of where a team is headed?

Neymar and Thomas Muller Show Off Their Soccer Skills In New German Car Commercial [VIDEO]

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Thomas Muller and Neymar star in a new German car TV commercial where they get to show off their soccer skills inside a building.

The Bayern Munich midfielder/forward and Barcelona striker go head-to-head in a competitive game of who can outdo each other. The contest goes on and on until they both drive away in their own VW cars, for the next round of the competition.

Heading into a New Year, Bayern Munich Is Still The Team to Beat

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Despite replacing their treble-winning manager and letting go of a potent striker without replacing him, Bayern Munich go into 2014 arguably stronger than ever.

When the Bavarians decided on January 16 that Pep Guardiola would take over for Jupp Heynckes in the summer, speculation traveled that maybe the release of the news so early would disrupt the team's journey to a potential magical season.

Italy Away Shirt For FIFA World Cup 2014: New Leaked [PHOTOS]

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New photographs of Italy's away/change shirt that the national team will wear at World Cup 2014 have been leaked on the Internet.

The photos feature the Italy away shirt, designed by Puma, with a white shirt that includes blue pinstripes. The Italy change shirt includes red and green stripes down the side of the shirt, and a blue V-neck collar.

Jose Mourinho Says Luis Suarez Should Have Received Yellow Card For Diving After Eto’o Collision [VIDEO]

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Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho showed his true colors today when in a post-match interview, he said that Luis Suarez should have received a yellow card for taking a dive after colliding with Chelsea striker Samuel Eto'o in the penalty area.

Mourinho said that by the way Suarez dived, it made it look like someone had shot him in the back, and that the incident should have resulted in a clear yellow card for he Liverpool striker.

Jose Mourinho Barges Into David Luiz and Eden Hazard Post-Match Interview On Live TV [VIDEO]

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Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho, still beaming from his side's 2-1 victory against Liverpool, barged into a post-match interview with David Luiz and Eden Hazard, to give the Brazilian a hug and share a joke on live television.

Luiz and Hazard were being interviewed by Geoff Shreeves of Sky Sports.

Arsenal Achieve Distinction Of Being the Best Premier League Team Of 2013; Find Out Who Finished 2nd-8th

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Arsenal have achieved the distinction of being the best Premier League side of 2013, amassing 79 points over the course of the 2013 calendar year.

The Gunners finished 2013 with a +35 goal difference and are two points better than the second best Premier League team of 2013, which is Manchester City.

Olivier Giroud Goal Ensures Arsenal Finish 2013 Top of the Premier League Table [GIF]

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Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud scored the only goal of the game today between the Gunners and Newcastle United at St James' Park to ensure that Arsenal finishes the 2013 year as top of the Premier League table.

In a closely fought match where both sides cancelled each other out, the difference was the Giroud header from a Theo Walcott pass into the box.

Arsenal Midfielder Mesut Ozil to Miss Up to Three Games: Daily Soccer Report

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Arsene Wenger has confirmed that Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil will miss up to three games after suffering a shoulder injury.

In his pre-match interview, Wenger told Sky Sports:

"I would have loved Mesut Ozil [to be] here, but he fell on his shoulder and he will be out for two to three games.

English Journalists Dissect Vincent Tan Quirks and Malky Mackay Sacking: Sky Sports’ Sunday Supplement Show [VIDEO]

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Britain's Sunday morning soccer discussion show,Sunday Supplement on Sky Sports, dissected the quirks of Cardiff City owner Vincent Tan as well as the sacking of Malky Mackay, and where the Scot goes from here.

On the show, journalist Charlie Wyett ofThe Sunsaid:

"There are other quirks as well as I think he was very keen on players with the number 8 in their birthdate.

Newcastle vs Arsenal and Everton vs Southampton, Gameweek 19: Open Thread

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After yesterday's six matches in the Premier League, we have four more in store today — including an intriguing match between Chelsea and Liverpool in a third against fourth battle at Stamford Bridge.

Here's today's TV schedule for soccer fans in the United States:

Newcastle United vs Arsenal, 8:30am, NBC Sports Network & mun2
Everton vs Southampton, 8:30am, Premier League Extra Time
Chelsea vs Liverpool, 11am, NBC Sports Network & Telemundo
Tottenham vs Stoke, 11am,Premier League Extra Time

Starting line-ups:

Newcastle:Krul; Debuchy, Coloccini (c), Williamson, Santon; Anita, Tiote, Cabaye; Sissoko, Remy, Gouffran

Subs:Elliot, Haidara, Yanga-Mbiwa, Sammy Ameobi, Ben Arfa, Shola Ameobi, Cisse.

Watch ‘Cristiano Ronaldo – A Golden Year 2013,’ The Full-Length Sky Sports Documentary [VIDEO]

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Sky Sports this week debuted a 25-minute documentary about Real Madrid striker Cristiano Ronaldo entitled 'Cristiano Ronaldo —A Golden Year 2013.'

The Ronaldo documentary features highlights of all of his goals from an incredible 2013 season, as well as exclusive clips from his La Liga season.

Did Cardiff Owner Vincent Tan Boo His Own Team After Draw Against Sunderland? [VIDEO]

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After Sunderland's late equalizer against Cardiff in the Premier League match on Saturday, did Cardiff owner Vincent Tan boo his own team after the referee blew the final whistle in the Welsh capital?

As soon as the final whistle was blown, a resounding chorus of boos filled the Cardiff City Stadium with fans showing their displeasure presumably at the final score as well as at Vincent Tan, the club's owner who sacked manager Malky Mackay earlier this week.

Can Liverpool Break Jose Mourinho’s Cynical, Anti-Football Tactics At Chelsea?

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While everybody is raving about the competitiveness of this Premier League season, it is entirely possible a single team will run away with the league still, as half the fixtures remain to be played. That side is Jose Mourinho's Chelsea. Call it cynical or anti-football, but what Mourinho is doing again at Chelsea is setting up his team to maximize results, while annoying neutrals in the process.

Sunderland Forward Fabio Borini Rushed To Hospital After Collapsing In Dressing Room

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Sunderland forward Fabio Borini has been rushed to the hospital after collapsing in the dressing room at half time, where he was unconscious. The Italian left the ground on a stretcher with a drip attached before being rushed to the hospital.

Borini has regained consciousness and was taken to hospital as a precautionary measure.

Stephan El Shaarawy Out For 10 Weeks In Blow to AC Milan

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AC Milan striker Stephan El Shaarawy will be out of action for 10 weeks after undergoing surgery today on a foot injury.

The 21-year-old forward will miss several Serie A games for AC Milan in addition to the Italian side's UEFA Champions League match against Atletico Madrid.

El Shaarawy has had an injury-riddled season for AC Milan, only playing four matches in Serie A and one in the UEFA Champions League.

Tom Huddlestone Finally Scores; Gets His Hair Cut During Match [PHOTOS]

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Hull City midfielder Tom Huddlestone scored for his club today, and proceeded to get his hair cut on the sidelines during the match.

It's been over a year since midfielder Tom Huddlestone made the pledge that he wasn't going to cut his hair until he scored a goal. During that time, he played several games for Tottenham Hotspur but didn't score.

Joe Hart Suffers Nasty Eye Injury After Colliding With Crystal Palace Striker [PHOTO]

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Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart suffered a nasty eye injury today after colliding with Crystal Palace striker Cameron Jerome in the game at the Etihad Stadium.

Hart dived to the ground to collect the ball into his hands, but Jerome was unable to stop his run and accidentally collided with Hart.

Nicolas Anelka Goal Celebration Ignites Controversy Due to Alleged Anti-Semitic Gesture

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West Bromwich Albion striker Nicolas Anelka scored two vital goals against West Ham United today, but one of his goal celebrations has ignited a storm of controversy in France, claiming the celebration was anti-semitic.

French journalistPhilippe Auclair explained:

"[There's a] big storm brewing in France about Anelka's 'celebration' of his first goal [against West Ham] with a to say the least- [very] controversial gesture.

Mario Balotelli Will Not Be Sold In January Transfer Window, Says AC Milan

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Just hours after reports in Italy said that Mario Balotelli is for sale, AC Milan have issued a statement on its website to categorically state that Balotelli will not be sold in the January transfer window.

The statement from AC Milan reads:

"AC Milan categorically denies statements that have been attributed to club President Sivlio Berlusconi regarding the possible transfer of Mario Balotelli.

South Korea Home and Away Shirts For World Cup 2014: Leaked [PHOTOS]

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Photographs of South Korea's home and away shirts for FIFA World Cup 2014 have been leaked on the Internet.

South Korea's home shirt for the World Cup in Brazil will feature a red shirt with a blue stripe on each shoulder as well as a blue trim around the collar. The shirt also features the South Korea football federation crest in blue as well as the Nike logo.

Mario Balotelli Must Be Sold, Says AC Milan Owner Silvio Berlusconi: Daily Soccer Report

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AC Milan ownerSilvio Berlusconi has decided to put striker Mario Balotelli up for sale, according to a report in the Italian media. Berlusconi is understood to have had enough of Balotelli, who he called a rotten apple one year ago, and the Milan owner wants to create a new image for AC Milan instead of the 'bad boy' appearance that Super Mario gives the Serie A side.

Watch ‘World Soccer Radio’, Live at 9pm ET: Tonight’s Topic: Preview of Weekend EPL Matches [VIDEO]

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Tonight, Nick Geber previews this weekend's line-up of Premier League matches.

Watch tonight at 9PM ET. Chime in via Twitter@worldsocceradioor call in to the studio at 800-878-PLAY.

The live broadcast of World Soccer Radio begins at 9pm ET and runs until 10pm ET. The show is on every weeknight, and features Nick Geber, best known for his Fox Football Friday and World Soccer Daily shows.

Penalty Boxing Day Bonanza (EPL Talk Review Podcast)

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Did you enjoy that day off from football watching duty and got plenty of family time in? Good, now that's sorted we can dive right back in to, Suarez, strike rates, and Santa's January wishlist.

In section 1 we talk about the big game of Boxing Day, as Liverpool travelled to Manchester City.

Premier League Saturday, Gameweek 19: Open Thread

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After a full schedule of Boxing Day matches, we have six Premier League games today and four tomorrow.

Here's today's TV schedule for soccer fans in the United States:

Saturday, December 28:

West Ham United vs West Bromwich Albion, 7:45am, NBC Sports Network
Manchester City vs Crystal Palace, 10am,NBCSN
Aston Villa vs Swansea, 10am, Premier League Extra Time
Hull vs Fulham, 10am, Premier League Extra Time
Norwich vs Manchester United, 10am, Premier League Extra Time
Cardiff City vs Sunderland, 12:30pm, NBC

Before, during or after today's matches, join the conversation in the comments section below with fellow soccer fans from around the world.

Commentators for NBC’s Premier League Matches This Weekend: Gameweek 19

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The commentators have been announced for this weekend's Premier League matches on US television.

Saturday, December 28:

West Ham United vs West Bromwich Albion, 7:45am, NBC Sports Network; Gary Taphouse & Stewart Robson
Manchester City vs Crystal Palace, 10am,NBCSN; Ian Crocker & Trevor Francis
Aston Villa vs Swansea, 10am, Premier League Extra Time; Joe Speight & Neil Mellor
Hull vs Fulham, 10am, Premier League Extra Time; David Stowell & Dean Sturridge
Norwich vs Manchester United, 10am, Premier League Extra Time; Tony Jones & Tony Gale
Cardiff City vs Sunderland, 12:30pm, NBC; Steve Banyard & Efan Ekoku

Sunday, December 29:

Newcastle United vs Arsenal, 8:30am, NBC Sports Network & mun2; Jon Champion & Chris Waddle
Everton vs Southampton, 8:30am, Premier League Extra Time; Daniel Mann & Garry Birtles
Chelsea vs Liverpool, 11am, NBC Sports Network & Telemundo; Arlo White & Graeme Le Saux
Tottenham vs Stoke, 11am,Premier League Extra Time; Gary Taphouse & Terry Gibson

What are your thoughts on the selection of commentators this weekend?

Soccer Fans Beware, DirecTV to Raise Prices for Satellite TV in 2014: Daily Soccer Report

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In February, DirecTV will be increasing the price across various tiers by an average of 3.7%, which may impact the bills of soccer fans in the United States.

According to The Verge, "the Entertainment tier will increase from $54.99 to $57.99, though existing subscribers will pay $56.

Club America Third Shirt for 2014 Season: Leaked [PHOTOS]

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Photos of Club America's third shirt for 2014 have been leaked on the Internet.

The Liga MX side will be wearing a two-tone blue shirt for the 2014 season as their third shirt featuring a design from Nike where half of the shirt is blue, and the other half is sky blue.

The shirt features the typical sponsor logos from Club America, as well as a rounded collar.

Dad Plays Cruel Christmas Trick On Soccer-Loving Daughter; Watch What Happens Next [VIDEO]

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A father played a cruel trick on his daughter on Christmas morning by giving his child a wrapped present with a Porto shirt inside. The problem is that both he and his daughter are massive Benfica supporters.

Watch the video below to see what the heated Portuguese rivalry between Benfica and Porto means to soccer fans of all ages.

Fulham Interested in Signing Michael Bradley in January Transfer Window, Says Report

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Fulham are interested in signing US international midfielder Michael Bradley from AS Roma in the January transfer window, according to a report.

Sources in Italy reveal that Bradley is interested in moving to a club in England, but that the deal may only happen if and when Roma are able to sign a like-for-like replacement.

Manchester United Must Continue Its Road Success In Order To Defy Recent Premier League Trends

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As most football managers will tell you: "You need to win your home games in order to have any chance of success in the league." Recent statistics would show that this view does have validity.

In the Premier League era to date (1992 to December 2013): Manchester United, Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool have played 414 BPL home matches and have won more than 60% of the time (United-74.

Tony Pulis Proving Doubters Wrong With Improved Results at Crystal Palace

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Crystal Palace's decision to appoint Tony Pulis, as I discussed last month, was the only realistic possibility the club had of staying in the Barclays Premier League.

Palace's squad is short on quality and had been stretched by a summer of seemingly aimless buying under former manager Ian Holloway.

Manchester City-Liverpool Game Provides Chelsea With Important Lessons of How to Defend Against Luis Suarez

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Manchester City defeated Liverpool 2-1 on Boxing Day in a match shrouded in controversy. Much like the League Cup semi-final second leg in 2012 where Liverpool emerged the victors in a controversially referred match between these two clubs, much of the post-match discussion has focused on decisions of the officials' crew.

UK-Based Supporters of Premier League Clubs Deserve More Respect From Foreign Owners

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Every time the subject of foreign ownership comes up in the Premier League, the term xenophobia comes up. As an Indian-American who has spent much time in the UK, I have used the term myself, something I now am ashamed of. I am not against foreign ownership in the Football League and Premier League unlike some who have advocated the implementation of a "German" model where all majority owners must be German nationals and the vast majority of clubs are community based.

Paris Saint-Germain Consider Signing Leo Messi and Triggering Barcelona’s €250m Release Clause

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French media are reporting that Paris Saint-Germain are weighing up the option of placing a bid for Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi, which means that PSG would need to pay the€250million release clause to land the world's best footballer.

The report in the French daily newspaper Le Parisienreveals that Messi is dissatisfiedwith Barcelona vice president Javier Faus's comments about his contract renewal.

Underappreciated Wayne Rooney Deserves Respect For 150 Goal Achievement

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Against Hull City, Wayne Rooney scored a sensational goal to become the second player in Premier League history to score 150 goals with one team; the first is Arsenal legend and current New York Red Bulls striker Thierry Henry. The accomplishment is a testament to his longevity, class and skill, but Rooney's spotlight has seemed to dim the past few years.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Tipped As Leading Contender for Cardiff City Manager Job

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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been tipped as the leading contender to replace Malky Mackay as manager of Cardiff City Football Club.

Mackay was sacked today after being forced out of the Welsh club by owner Vincent Tan. But there's been a lot of speculation among pundits and bookies that Solksjaer is among the top candidates being considered for the Cardiff job.

Cardiff City Owner Vincent Tan Sacks Manager Malky Mackay

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Cardiff City manager Malky Mackay has been sacked today as boss of the Welsh club.

According to a brief statement on the Cardiff City website,

"The Board of Directors at Cardiff City Football Club have today relievedMalky Mackayof his duties.

"A new first team manager will be appointed and announced in due course.

Website Stops Creating Animated GIFs of Soccer Goals After Receiving Take Down Notices From Premier League & UEFA

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Popular animated GIF website Feint Zebra has stopped producing animated GIFs of goals because the site owner has received take down notices from the Premier League and UEFA, as well as Twitter removing many of their tweets due to DMCA takedown notices from the Premier League.

Sites that create animated gifs appear to be the next wave of attack from NetResult, the company that is responsible for policing the Internet in order to protect the Premier League's copyrighted material — i.

Brendan Rodgers Furious Blaming Liverpool’s Defeat at Manchester City On ‘Home Referee’: Nightly Soccer Report

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Other than the over-exaggeration by Luis Suarez who tried to win a penalty after having his shirt pulled in the box late in the game against Manchester City, Liverpool deservedly have a lot of complaints regarding the refereeing during Saturday's match at the Etihad Stadium.

Brendan Rodgers in his post-match interview had this to say about referee Lee Mason:

"We had no help from the officials.

Watch ‘World Soccer Radio’, Live at 9pm ET: Tonight’s Topic: Boxing Day Premier League Matches [VIDEO]

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Tonight, Nick Geber and co-host Danny Page look back at the day's big matches and surprises. They love to hear from their listeners and viewers!

Watch tonight at 9PM ET. Chime in via Twitter@worldsocceradioor call in to the studio at 800-878-PLAY.

The live broadcast of World Soccer Radio begins at 9pm ET and runs until 10pm ET.

Fouls By Defenders On Corners And Free Kicks Have Gone Too Far: Premier League Referee Decisions, Gameweek 18

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Boxing Day saw all 20 Premier League teams play, producing some very interesting results and a number of goalkeeping howlers. As ever, the referees were kept very busy with red cards, penalties and goal line decisions.

Fouls inside the box from set pieces are increasingly becoming more and more frequent.

Footage of West Ham United Defender Being Arrested Outside Essex Nightclub [VIDEO]

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Footage has been posted on YouTube allegedly showing West Ham United defender James Tomkins from his arrest during the early morning Sunday hours earlier this week.

Tomkins was arrested outside an Essex nightclub and charged with resisting arrest and being drunk and disorderly after security staff at the nightclub called the police.

Remembering the 1971-72 Season: Another Tight Race In English Football

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After today's Boxing Day results, a five team log jam sits atop the Premier League table. This is the most competitive the top flight has been in the Premier League era. But in the 1970s, an era when each win was worth just two points, there's a remarkable story to tell.

Derby County, under manager Brian Clough, had stormed the First Division (the old top flight in England), winning promotion to the First Division in May 1969 and finishing fourthin 1969-1970.

Brazil Third Shirt For 2014 FIFA World Cup: Leaked [PHOTOS]

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Photographs of Brazil's third shirt for World Cup 2014 have been leaked on the Internet.

Brazil's third shirt is a black design with yellow trim. Designed and manufactured by Nike, Brazil's third shirt that will be worn at World Cup 2014 in matches where they won't be wearing their home or away shirts.

Arsenal Go Top Of The Table After Second Half Surge Leads Gunners to Victory

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Arsenal defeated West Ham 3-1 United at Upton Park today and won their first Premier League match in their last five appearances, moving back to the top of the Premier League table — at least for a couple of hours, depending on the result of the Manchester City-Liverpool match.

Both teams started aggressive with high back-lines and, in turn, each side had plenty of opportunities to get on the scoreboard but both were unsuccessful.

Millwall Sack Manager Steve Lomas After 4-0 Boxing Day Defeat to Watford

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Millwall Football Club have announced the sacking of manager Steve Lomas, just hours after the club were beaten 4-0 against Watford on Boxing Day.

The defeat sees Millwall drop to 20th position in the Championship table.

A statement on the club website read:

"Coach Neil Harris and Academy Director Scott Fitzgerald, both former players at The Den, will take temporary charge of the team for the trip to Doncaster on Sunday, and until a new permanent manager is appointed.

FA Commission Discussing January Winter Break for Premier League: Daily Soccer Report

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The FA Commission are discussing the possibility of instituting a Premier League winter break, according toThe Daily Telegraphreporter Henry Winter.

The Premier League winter break is being proposed between for future January's between the third round and fourth round of the FA Cup tournament.

Power Goes Out But Soccer Fans Use Cellphones to Illuminate Stadium [VIDEO]

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In the Championship game between Leicester City and Reading today, a power failure resulted in darkness falling on the ironically named King Power Stadium in England.

However, cheeky Leicester City supporters switched on their mobile phones and turned them to face the pitch, with Leicester City supporters singing "We're Leicester City, we'll play in the dark.

Don’t Sleep on Manchester United’s Premier League Title Chances

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David Moyes has been the subject of much derision this season. But as the epic Boxing Day comeback against Hull City indicates, the reigning champions have plenty of fight in them. The character demonstrated by the Wayne Rooney captained side at the KC Stadium was a shot across the bow to the teams ahead of the Red Devils in the table.

Wayne Rooney Becomes Only Second Person to Score 150 Goals for A Single Premier League Club [GIF]

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Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney became only the second person to score 150 goals for a single Premier League club today when he unleashed a brilliant shot to score against Hull City, to make it 2-2 in a sensational match inside just the first 25 minutes.

The only other Premier League footballer to reach the same milestone as Rooney is Thierry Henry.

Liverpool Face-Off Against Manchester City In Boxing Day’s Marquee Match

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(For US Viewers – Manchester City v. Liverpool will be shown LIVE on Thursday December 26th at 12:30ppm EST on NBC Sports Network)

Boxing Day's final match features two teams in brilliant form: league leading Liverpool and third place Manchester City. Liverpool have scored seventeen times in their last four Premier League matches as the club has rocketed past league rivals to the league's summit.

Hull City vs Manchester United, Boxing Day: Open Thread

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We hope you had a wonderful Christmas Day and that you're ready and rested for today's Boxing Day matches where we have the rare treat of all 20 Premier League clubs playing on the same day.

Here's today's TV schedule for soccer fans in the United States:

Hull City vs Manchester United, 7:45am, NBC Sports Network
West Ham United vs Arsenal, 10am,NBCSN
Chelsea vs Swansea, 10am, Premier League Extra Time
Aston Villa vs Crystal Palace, 10am,Premier League Extra Time
Cardiff vs Southampton, 10am,Premier League Extra Time
Everton vs Sunderland, 10am,Premier League Extra Time
Newcastle vs Stoke, 10am,Premier League Extra Time
Norwich vs Fulham, 10am,Premier League Extra Time
Tottenham vs West Brom, 10am,Premier League Extra Time
Manchester City vs Liverpool, 12:30pm, NBC Sports Network & mun2

Starting line-ups:

Hull:McGregor, Bruce, Chester, Davies, Elmohamady, Figueroa, Meyler, Huddlestone, Livermore, Graham, Sagbo

Manchester United:De Gea, Rafael, Evra, Evans, Smalling, Fletcher, Cleverley, Valencia, Young, Welbeck, Rooney

In team news, Darren Fletcher makes his first start for United since December 1 of last year.

Boxing Day’s Early Kick-Off: Manchester United Look To Breach Hull City’s Superior Home Defense

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(For US Viewers – Hull City v. Manchester United will be shown LIVE on Thursday December 26th at 7:45am EST on NBC Sports Network)

Boxing Day's early kick-off will see David Moyes lead a resurgent Manchester United into the KC Stadium to face-off against Steve Bruce's Hull City.

An American Soccer Fan’s Ode to Boxing Day [VIDEO]

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December 26 is Boxing Day, a traditional holiday that is celebrated throughout the British Isles. It's a national holiday in Great Britain filled with trips to the pub, fox hunting, leftovers from Christmas dinners, plenty of alcohol and —perhaps best of all — a full schedule of English football.

Watch ‘World Soccer Radio’, Live at 9pm ET: Tonight’s Topic: Preview of Boxing Day Premier League Matches [VIDEO]

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Tonight, Nick Geber and co-host Danny Page will preview Thursday's Boxing Day matches in the Premier League.

Watch tonight at 9PM ET. And chime in via Twitter@worldsocceradio.

The live stream of World Soccer Radio begins at 9pm ET and runs until 10pm ET. The show is on every weeknight, and features Nick Geber, best known for his Fox Football Friday and World Soccer Daily shows.

Merry Christmas From World Soccer Talk

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On behalf of everyone at World Soccer Talk, I'd like to wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas.

Whether you're a reader, viewer or listener to World Soccer Talk, we hope you have a wonderful holiday, and get plenty of rest and joy in preparation for a Boxing Day schedule full of Premier League matches.

Clint Dempsey’s Return to Fulham is a Welcome One

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They say never go back, but American Clint Dempsey has just done that. The move comes at a time when both Dempsey and Fulham could use a much needed reunion. The Cottagers are currently languishing in 19th place in the Premier League, and although it is far too early to write Fulham off, recent results have not been too uplifting.

Clint Dempsey Signs Two-Month Loan Deal With Fulham: Official [VIDEO]

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Fulham have officially announced the two-month loan signing of attacking midfielder Clint Dempsey from Seattle Sounders.

Dempsey will wear the number 32 shirt at the Craven Cottage club. The US international is excited about playing for Fulham again:

"It feels good to be back.

While Fans Enjoy Their Holiday, Premier League Players And Managers Will Be Pushed To Their Limits

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For football fans, the next seven days are going to be pure bliss. Every Premier League club will play three games starting with Boxing Day (Dec.26th) and ending on New Year's Day (Jan.1st); Arsenal and Chelsea will actually play four games between Dec.23rd and Jan.1st. The schedule of games provides BPL fans with the chance to escape from their holiday madness and plop down in front of their televisions to watch some spectacular footballing action.

World Soccer Talk Names Its Premier League Team of the Season For 2013/14 So Far

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After careful consideration, World Soccer Talk has selected a squad of 18 players as the best footballers so far during this 2013/14 Premier League season.

We tried to balance the side though obviously we've gone heavy in central midfield (with two additional central midfielders on the bench) while including some players from sides such as Southampton and Hull that have played out of their skins thus far this season.

Didier Drogba Becomes a Roving Reporter and Interviews Kids During Holiday Party [VIDEO]

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Soccer legend Didier Drogba took a break from his playing duties and became a roving reporter for a day, when he interviewed children at a New Year's Party that was organized by his team, Galatasaray.

Drogba is joined by Wesley Sneijder during one part of the report.

As you can see from the video below, the kids love Drogba.

Redknapp, Gerrard, Owen & Carragher Wish You A Merry Christmas In Humorous Medley [VIDEO]

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Impressionist Darren Farley is back with a new video, featuring the comedian singing Christmas hits in a number of different characters including —Jamie Carragher, Roy Hodgson, Michael Owen, Steven Gerrard and Harry Redknapp.

Even if you're not a Liverpool supporter, this video is worth watching for a few chuckles.

NBC Sports Scores A Winner With Its Unprecedented Coverage of Arsenal-Chelsea Game

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NBC Sports Group gave American viewers on Monday afternoon a little taste into how comprehensive soccer coverage is in the UK. In the process, they perhaps permanently left ESPN and FOX Sports in their wake. With all of English football focused on the top of the table London derby between Chelsea and Arsenal, it was a great opportunity for NBC to showcase all of the talent and creativity they have at their disposal in a single broadcast.

Everton Is The Perfect Place For Ross Barkley To Realize His Enormous Potential

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Bet you can guess what the most requested haircut will be in Merseyside this festive period: "Just shave it all off, lad."

This stems, of course, from Everton's skin-headed assassin Ross Barkley and his marvelous showing that helped fire Everton to within two points of the Premier League summit.

Manchester City-Liverpool Game May Feature the Largest-Ever ‘Kolo Toure’ / ‘Yaya Toure’ Chant [VIDEO]

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Thursday's match between Manchester City and Liverpool at Etihad Stadium will feature a unique opportunity to set a world record. Both Kolo Toure and Yaya Toure will likely be on the pitch together, albeit playing for different sides. Nevertheless, there's the opportunity to set a record for the largest number of participants joining in the "Yaya Toure" and Kolo Toure song/dance/chant at one time.

Jack Wilshere Says He Gave Man City Fans the Finger Because They Were Abusing Him About His Kids: Daily Soccer Report

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Arsenal's 21-year-old midfielder Jack Wilshere says that he gave Manchester City supporters the middle finger because they were abusing him about his children. Wilshere received a two match suspension from The FA for the incident, but the Gunner felt hard done by.

Wilshere said on Twitter:

"Gutted not to be Involved last night!

The Last Time The English Football Top Flight Was This Close Was Christmas 1974

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The last time the clubs near the top of the table of English football's top flight were this close was Christmas 1974.

Currently, Liverpool sit atop the Premier League table on goal difference above Arsenal who have the same number of points but not as good a goal difference as the Reds. Right behind Arsenal are Manchester City, Chelsea and Everton.

Portuguese Grandmother Invades Pitch During Sporting Braga Game [VIDEO]

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A small group of Sporting Braga supporters invaded the pitch during last weekend's Portuguese match against Maritimo, including a grandmother who ran past security before being ushered off the pitch by a steward.

You've got to love the way the grandmother took advantage of a fellow fan being blocked by the steward, which allowed her to make a run for it around the back of the security.

Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher Pick Their Teams of the Premier League Season So Far [VIDEO]

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On this week's episode of Monday Night Football, Sky Sports pundits Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher picked their Premier League team of the 2013/14 season so far.

Surprisingly, both pundits agreed on most of their selections. But the former Liverpool and Manchester United defenders disagreed on a few key players particularly in midfield, goalkeeper and defense.

Arsenal Still Need Depth In Attack to Compete For Trophies

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Jose Mourinho's streak of staying unbeaten against the man he once famously described as a voyeur continued Monday night as a 0-0 stalemate occurred at the Emirates Stadium.

The contrast of how both teams play along with the rain affecting the pitch was further evidence to display that if Arsène Wenger truly cares about winning the Premier League again, then an elite striker needs to be purchased either during the January transfer window or in the summer.

Watch ‘World Soccer Radio’, Live at 9pm ET: Tonight’s Topics: EPL Title Race, Spurs & Cardiff [VIDEO]

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Tonight, Nick Geber and guest Kartik Krishnaiyer will talk title race, ask if maybe AVB sucked after all and where would Cardiff be without Mad Vinny?

Watch tonight at 9PM ET. Chime in via Twitter@worldsocceradioor call in to the studio at 800-878-PLAY.

The live broadcast of World Soccer Radio begins at 9pm ET and runs until 10pm ET.

Scouse Tree (EPL Talk Review Podcast)

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It's Christmas time. There is need to be afraid. At Christmas time, we turn on floodlights and we wade to football matches. Incredible conditions in football begin to become a factor at this point in the season. But in the league, there are storms brewing on a political level. Who has actually deserved a sacking this season?

By Hiring Tim Sherwood As Tottenham Manager, Daniel Levy Takes Easy Way Out

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The appointment of Tim Sherwood as manager of Tottenham Hotspur could be the direct result of bigger names that chairman Daniel Levy fancied turning down the vacant manager's post. Following last Monday's sacking of Andre Villas-Boas, several big names were linked with the Spurs job. Midweek elimination at White Hart Lane from the League Cup at the hands of relegation threatened West Ham United very easily could have ended Sherwood's chances for a permanent appointment.

Swansea Striker Michu Will Miss Next 6 Weeks Due To Ankle Surgery

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Swansea City have confirmed today that Michu will be out of action for six weeks. The Spanish attacking midfielder/striker will undergo surgery to repair an ankle injury that Michu has been suffering with for most of the season.

Swansea manager Michael Laudrup shared the news with the media on Tuesday morning.

La Liga Roundup, Gameweek 17: Pedro’s Treble as Barca Hit Five

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Barcelona and Atletico Madrid both had to come from behind to win their respective matches in the final game week before the mid-season break. As a result, the two clubs remain level on points at the top of La Liga, with Barca edging ahead thanks to a marginally superior goal difference. Real Madrid stay five points behind the top two after beating Valencia, while Athletic Bilbao's win over Rayo Vallecano keeps them in the final Champions League berth.

Jose Mourinho Says That Arsenal Like To Cry, After Being Asked About John Obi Mikel Incident

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In a post-match interview after Chelsea drew 0-0 with Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium, Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho claimed that Arsenal "like to cry." The response was in question to John Obi Mikel's collision with Arsenal midfielder Mikel Arteta in the 37th minute of the match.

Mourinho said:

"They like to cry.

Tottenham Offer Tim Sherwood Manager Job On Interim Basis Until Summer

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Having seemingly run out of plausible options of an ideal manager to replace Andre Villas-Boas in charge at Tottenham Hotspur, Daniel Levy has decided to offer Tim Sherwood the manager's job on an interim basis until next summer, according toThe Guardiannewspaper.

Tottenham Chairman Daniel Levy has reportedly met with Louis Van Gaal in the Netherlands, but Van Gaal isn't available to take the job until the summer due to his commitment to the Dutch national team in the World Cup next summer.

Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher Discuss Whether Liverpool Can Win the Premier League Title [VIDEO]

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On today's edition of Monday Night Football on Sky Sports, pundits Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher discussed whether Liverpool can win the 2013/14 Premier League title.

When Carragher began to discuss the topic, former Manchester United footballer Neville made a face and joked that god was playing a trick on him with Liverpool being top of the league, sitting beside Carragher, who used to play for Manchester United's most hated rival (the Reds).

Malky Mackay Decision Delay Demonstrates Supporters Power is Thankfully On The Rise

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The power of supporters was realized Monday as Cardiff City owner Vincent Tan appeared to soften his stance towards Bluebirds manager Malky Mackay. From South Wales to the banks of the Humber Estuary in Kingston-Upon-Hull, supporters strong stand has forced the FA and Premier League to consider their feelings instead of simply rubber stamping the wishes of Hull City AFC owner Assem Allam.

Arsenal vs Chelsea, Premier League Gameweek 17: Open Thread

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For viewers in the United States, the pre-match television coverage of Arsenal against Chelsea kicks off at 2pm ET on NBCSN featuring the first live studio broadcast of Gary Lineker. Plus he'll be joined by Tim Howard. The match kicks off at 3pm ET on the same channel with Arlo White and Graeme Le Saux commentating.

Arsene Wenger’s New Golden Generation: A Triumph For the Arsenal Manager Who Did It His Way

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"Arsène is Arsenal, and Arsenal is Arsène"

Mockery of Arsène Wenger's youth policy was in vogue the past several years in the British press and among opposing supporters. Arsenal's seemingly limitless ability to lose big in the transfer market while counting on untested and unproven, largely British players, was mocked to no end.

Emmanuel Adebayor, Hero Or Villain? Why Ade Is One Of The Most Frustrating Football Geniuses

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On Thursday, I argued that interim Tottenham Hotspur manager Tim Sherwood should not count on Emmanuel Adebayor, the temperamental Togolese Striker, for Sunday's match against Southampton. But Adebayor turned in a performance fitting of a star player whose team was badly in need of a result. He ran his socks off and scored twice to lift Spurs victory.

Watch the Interview With Arsenal Legend Thierry Henry: Sky Sports Full 25-Minute Special [VIDEO]

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On Sunday night, Sky Sports released an exclusive 25-minute interview with Arsenal legend Thierry Henry.

Arsenal's all-time leading goalscorer talks about an incredible career that has seen him go from North London to Barcelona to New York and more. Henry also shares his views on many of the personalities he has worked with including Arsene Wenger, Pep Guardiola and Lionel Messi.

Italy Home Shirt For World Cup 2014: Leaked [PHOTO]

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A photo of Italy's shirt that the Azzurri will wear at World Cup 2014 has been leaked on the Internet.

Italy's home shirt for FIFA World Cup 2014 will be designed by Puma, and features a classic blue Italy shirt that is accentuated by the national colors of the flag (red, white and green) as the trim.

Why Luis Suarez’s Contract Extension Is A Win For the Premier League: Monday Soccer Insider

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The most important win of the weekend was the new contract for Luis Suarez at Liverpool. No one knows what will happen this summer if Liverpool fall out of the top four, but right now this could be the best news for English football in quite some time vis a vis the superstar competition with La Liga.

Nominate The ‘EPL Talk Podcast’ In The 2013 Stitcher Awards

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If you've ever listened to an episode of the EPL Talk Podcast, we'd like to ask a favor of you that'll take just 30 seconds.

We'd love it if you'd nominate us to be in the running for an award. Stitcher is asking for suggestions of which podcasts to include in the category of 'Best Sports Commentary.

Manchester City vs Liverpool: Boxing Day Preview (Live on BT Sport)

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Manchester City vs Liverpool
Thursday, December 26, 5.30PM kick off
Etihad Stadium, Manchester
Premier League
Live on BT Sport

One of the standout fixtures over the festive season will be Manchester City's clash with Liverpool on Boxing Day, with both sides in the mix for honours this season.

6 Reasons Why Cardiff Manager Malky Mackay Needs to Stay In Charge At City

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It's been a rough week for Cardiff City supporters, the club, manager and players — all because of the inane actions by club owner Vincent Tan. While Cardiff are trying to set up talks between Tan and Malky Mackay to settle their differences, it's important that Tan sticks with Mackay for the following six reasons:

1.

Where to Watch Inter MIlan vs AC Milan On US TV and Internet; Live at 2:30pm ET Today

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One of the most prestigious fixtures in the Serie A calendar kicks off today with the Milan derby between Internazionale Milan and AC Milan at the San Siro. The match kicks off at 2:45pm ET today on beIN SPORT,and DishWorld.

Programming note: For viewers in the United States, the Milan derby is being shown exclusively on beIN SPORT and DishWorld.

Barcelona Head Into The Winter Break On Top Of La Liga, But By The Thinnest Of Margins

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When the final whistle sounded at Vicente Calderón Stadium on Saturday, the celebrations spread throughout the crowd of 49,000 because for the first time in 55 weeks, league leading Barcelona had been knocked off the summit of La Liga by Atletico Madrid...technically.

The Atleti had assumed first place in the Spanish Primera Division by defeating a stubborn Levante, 3-2, but were awaiting the result of Barcelona's match against Getafe on Sunday.

Manuel Pellegrini Rectifies Manchester City Selection Errors Against Fulham With Great Tactical Second Half

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With Pablo Zabaleta unavailable for Manchester City's afternoon kickoff at Craven Cottage against Fulham, manager Manuel Pellegrini had a selection choice to make at right-back. Sixty minutes into the match, with the Blues holding a tenuous 2-1 lead, it was obvious Pellegrini had made the wrong choice.

Daniel Levy Could Keep Tim Sherwood in Charge At Tottenham Until Summer: Daily Soccer Report

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Tottenham Hotspur face a perilous situation where they have very few worthy options of managers to hire that will be able to step into the cauldron at White Hart Lane, play attractive football and help the club qualify for the UEFA Champions League. With so few managers being available,The Daily Mailnewspaper reports that their sources indicate that interim manager Tim Sherwood could be in charge until the summer.

Southampton vs Tottenham Hotspur, Gameweek 17: Open Thread

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Two matches are scheduled today in the Premier League, both of which have implications on the top of the table.

In the early kick-off, Southampton hosts Tottenham Hotspur. Under manager Tim Sherwood, Tottenham will be hoping to bounce back after the disappointing defeat mid-week against West Ham United in the League Cup.

Manchester United Continue To Show That They Are A ‘Special’ Club

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Recently, a Chelsea supporter reminded me of comments made by manager Jose Mourinho during the heat of the summer transfer saga involving the London club and Manchester United. With the media pumping out daily stories of Rooney's imminent departure, and anticipation of a harsh reception during his first match back at Old Trafford, the striker turned in a man of the match performance against Chelsea.

Bayern Munich vs Raja Casablanca, FIFA Club World Cup Final: Open Thread

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The 2014 FIFA Club World Cup Final kicks off today with Bayern Munich facing Raja Casablanca. The match will be shown live on US television and Internet at 2:30pm ET on FOX Sports 2 and FOX Soccer 2Go.

Pep Guardiola has the chance to win his first trophy in charge of Die Bayern as they take on Raja Casablanca in the FIFA Club World Cup Final.

Alvaro Negredo’s Sublime Assist to Manchester City’s James Milner; Best Pass of the Season? [GIF]

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Is this assist by Manchester City's Alvaro Negredo against Fulham the best pass of the 2013/14 Premier League season thus far?

It was a piece of sublime skill by Negredo who hit the ball with the outside of his foot from the right wing that went right into the path of James Milner to grab another goal for City.

DC United: Rising From The Doom And Gloom Of 2013

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DC United had perhaps their worst ever season in 2013. With the exception of the US Open Cup win on theOctober 1, the Black-and-Reds recorded the joint worst record in MLS history with only 16 points to their name.

That was in the past though. For 2014, DC United can enter the season with the safe knowledge that they will be competing in the CONCACAF Champions League, with thanks to their remarkable U.

Boca Juniors Home Shirt For 2014 Featuring A Retro Design From Nike [PHOTOS]

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Boca Juniors have released a rare limited edition version of its home shirt for the 2014 season, to commemorate the team's 100-year anniversary.

Designed by Nike, the shirt features no sponsor, a unique collar with a thick string, and the date 1913 on the back of the famous blue and yellow Boca Juniors shirt.

BBC Presenter David Coleman Has Died At Age 87

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Legendary BBC presenter David Coleman has died at the age of 87 after a short illness, according to a member of his family.

Coleman, who covered six World Cup tournaments for BBC as a commentator —including the finals of 1974 and 1978 —and a seventh World Cup (1982) as a presenter, was a very familiar voice and face on BBC programs such as Grandstand, Sportsnight With Coleman and A Question Of Sport.

Watch ‘World Soccer Radio’, Live at 9pm ET: Tonight’s Topics: Luis Suarez & EPL Weekend Preview [VIDEO]

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Tonight, Nick Geber will tell you what Jurgen Klinsmann and Luis Suarez have in common. Plus World Soccer Radio will feature the Premier League weekend preview with former FOX Soccer personality Nick Webster, now of RealFootyTalk.com.

Watch tonight at 9PM ET. Chime in via Twitter@worldsocceradioor call in to the studio at 800-878-PLAY.

Injury Rules Manchester United Winger Nani Out For A Few Weeks: Nightly Soccer Report

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Manchester United have confirmed that Nani has suffered a hamstring injury that will rule him out of action for a few weeks.

Nani hasn't played for United since December 7, and the winger now joins the United injury list that includes Robin van Persie (out for four weeks with a thigh injury) and Wayne Rooney (who is doubtful for tomorrow's game).

Squirrel Delays QPR vs Leicester City Match For 2 Minutes As Goalkeeper Chases Animal Around Pitch

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In today's first must-see match, a squirrel interrupted the game between Queens Park Rangers and Leicester City at Loftus Road.

The incident happened in the 14th minute of the Championship game when a squirrel ran on to the pitch and stopped the game. Leicester City goalkeeper David Nugent then chased the squirrel around the pitch before the game could be re-started.

Liverpool vs Cardiff City, Premier League Saturday Gameweek 17: Open Thread

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In Malky Mackay's pre-match press interview, the Cardiff City manager didn't deny that he received an e-mail giving him an ultimatum to either resign or be sacked. Nor did he deny that today might be his last match as manager of Cardiff. It's just one of the many riveting storylines going into today's Premier League matches.

Nominate Us For Best Sports Commentary (Special Update)

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If you've ever listened to an episode of the EPL Talk Podcast, we'd like to ask a favor of you that'll take just 30 seconds.

We'd love it if you'd nominate us to be in the running for an award. Stitcher is asking for suggestions of which podcasts to include in the category of 'Best Sports Commentary.

Commentators for NBC’s Premier League Matches This Weekend: Gameweek 17

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The commentators have been announced for this weekend's Premier League matches on US television.

Saturday, December 21:

Liverpool vs Cardiff City, 7:45am, NBC Sports Network; Steve Banyard & Chris Waddle
Fulham vs Manchester City, 10am,NBCSN & mun2; Gary Weaver & Tony Gale
Manchester United vs West Ham United, 10am, Premier League Extra Time; Gary Taphouse & Trevor Francis
Crystal Palace vs Newcastle United, 10am, Premier League Extra Time; Joe Speight & Alan Curbishley
Stoke vs Aston Villa, 10am,Premier League Extra Time; Tony Jones & Dean Sturridge
Sunderland vs Norwich, 10am,Premier League Extra Time; David Stowell & Brian Little
West Brom vs Hull, 10am,Premier League Extra Time; Jonathan Beck & Barry Horne

Sunday, December 22:

Southampton vs Tottenham, 8:30am, NBC Sports Network; Arlo White & Graeme Le Saux
Swansea City vs Everton, 11am, NBC Sports Network; Jon Champion & Gary O'Reilly

Monday, December 23:

Arsenal vs Chelsea, 3pm, NBC Sports Network;Arlo White & Graeme Le Saux

What are your thoughts on the selection of commentators this weekend?

David Beckham Encounters Issues With Port Of Miami Location, But Other Possibilities Exist For Miami MLS Team

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David Beckham's plans for building a MLS stadium at the Port Of Miami have come undone, according to a source familiar with the developments. The source considers the Port Of Miami/Watson Island project as "highly problematic" due to traffic considerations, potential parking hassles and the possible long-term needto expand the Port of Miami.

The Rise of Borussia Mönchengladbach

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The Bundesliga has been owned by Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund over the past four years and in that time the top 4 has rotated with Munich winning the league twice and Dortmund winning the league in back to back campaigns in 2010 and 2011. Schalke has graced the top 4 three times in the last four years and Bayer Leverkusen has made two appearances in this group while Werder Bremen poked its head in during 2009, and Hannover 96 snuck it's way into fourthin 2010.

Algeria Home Shirt For World Cup 2014: Leaked [PHOTO]

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A photograph of Algeria's home shirt they'll be wearing at World Cup 2014 has been leaked on the Internet.

Algeria, nicknamed The Foxes, will wear white as their home shirt with a green rounded-collar and green tabs at the bottom of the sleeves. Featured on the chest of the shirt is the Algerian football federation crest along with the Puma logo and Algerian flag.

Nike Extends Kit Deal With US Soccer Federation For 9 More Years

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Nike has extended their kit deal with US Soccer for nine more years, which will carry the relationship between the two organizations into its fourth decade.

Under the new deal, Nike will continue to provide kits for the US Men's National Team, US Women's National Team and every other US national team down to the US Soccer Development Academy.

The Top 5 Must-See Soccer Matches On Television This Weekend

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After a few weeks of running this feature, we're starting to get the hang of picking out some cracking games for your viewing pleasure.

Last weekend, we had 24 goals from our five feature games and this weekend we have another fine selection of contests for you to look forward to. And enjoy these games whilst you can, as a host of the European leagues stall temporarily for their customary winter break.

Clint Dempsey Undergoes Medical Ahead of Loan Move to Fulham

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As we reported one week ago, US striker Clint Dempsey is heading to Fulham on a loan deal.

Fulham Head Coach Rene Meulensteen confirmed today that Dempsey has undergone a medical with a view to moving back to the Craven Cottage club.

Dempsey reportedly turned down an offer from West Ham United in order to return to Fulham, the club he played for from 2007-2012.

Luis Suarez Signs New Long-Term Contract With Liverpool

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Luis Suarez has signed a new long term contract with Liverpool Football Club, which will fend off the big clubs in the January transfer window and will give Liverpool a lot of bargaining power in the summer or future transfer windows if the Uruguayan striker is ever to leave the club.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers was ecstatic regarding the news:

"This is fantastic news for everyone associated with the club; the team, the owners and most importantly the supporters.

Egyptian Winger Mohamed Salah Will Join Liverpool From Basel in January, Says Report: Nightly Soccer Report

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Egyptian wingerMohamed Salah will join Liverpool Football Club in January from FC Basel, according to a report tonight.

Salah'sclose friend and former teammate Mohamed Zika revealed the news to Egyptian TV today. Salah, a 21-year-old winger with 27 caps for Egypt and who is valued at 12million Euros, was namedCAF Most Promising African Talent of the Year in 2012.

Watch ‘World Soccer Radio’, Live at 9pm ET: Tonight’s Topics: Beckham’s Miami Experiment & MLS On YouTube? [VIDEO]

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Tonight, Nick Geber chats asks whether you're a fan or a spectator of your team? Plus, he asks whether would you watch MLS on the Net, and is there too much bad football programming on TV? Plus special guest Kartik Krishnaiyer will discuss Beckham's Miami experiment.

Watch tonight at 9PM ET.

Why Dortmund’s Marco Reus Will Not Be Going to Manchester United in This Transfer Window

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We are all used to reading ridiculous transfer rumors that are pedaled by tabloids and journalists looking for eye-grabbing headlines on a slow news day. But lately there seems to be an avalanche of rubbish reporting from several English football outlets. Most recent evidence was an article from The Daily Mail linking Dortmund star Marco Reus with a transfer to Manchester United this January.

Why Joe Hart Deserves a Well-Earned Manchester City Recall

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Manchester City advanced to the semi-finals of the League Cup on Tuesday with a 3-1 victory at Leicester, and Joe Hart once again impressed. The English keeper, dropped from the City side following a costly error late on in the October 27 loss to Chelsea, has been outstanding in European and League Cup matches since his demotion.

Are These Liverpool’s Home And Away Shirts For The 2014/15 Season? [PHOTO]

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Images of what may be Liverpool's home and away shirts for the 2014/15 season have been leaked on the Internet.

If these are in fact Liverpool's home and away shirts for next season, the Warrior shirts feature a consistent design that includes a thick horizontal band across the front of the shirt.

Ken Bates Misdeeds at Leeds United Put Football League Chief Executive At Center Of Controversy

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Football League Chief Executive Shaun Harvey, the former Ken Bates associate who was the Chief Executive of Leeds United during the lamentable ownership tenure of the former Chelsea owner, is at the heart of a ruling by Ofcom (the regulatory authority for the UK communications industries) regarding Yorkshire Radio.

Searching For Stevan Jovetić, the £22million Striker Who Went ‘Missing’ at Manchester City

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He was one of the most talented footballers Serie A had seen for years. One could have easily mistaken him for a young pony-tailed playmaker who made his name in the same purple shirt of Fiorentina back in the late Eighties.

His name was Stevan Jovetić and he took the league by storm after his move from F.

Cardiff Owner Issues Ultimatum to Manager Malky Mackay: Resign Or Be Sacked

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The public arguments between Cardiff City owner Vincent Tan and Cardiff City manager Malky Mackay have escalated to the point that Tan has told Mackay to resign or risk being sacked, according to a report by BBC Sport.

Tan reportedly sent a highly critical e-mail to Mackay, where he warned the manager to resign or he will be sacked.

Official Premier League Ball For 2014/15 Season: Nike Ordem Leaked [PHOTO]

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It's that time of the year when leaked images of soccer shirts and other merchandise are coming thick and fast.

The latest leaked image we've uncovered is a photograph of the official Premier League match ball for the 2014/15 season, which is the Nike Ordem ball.

The official Premier League ball for 2014/15 is white with a navy blue and black design and bright yellow fluorescent markings.

Holland Home Shirt For World Cup 2014 In Brazil: Leaked [PHOTO]

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An image of Holland's home shirt for World Cup 2014 has been leaked on the Internet.

Designed and manufactured by Nike, Holland's shirt for World Cup 2014 features an intricate design on the front of the shirt featuring an array of different shades of orange cubes.

The Holland World Cup shirt also features the retro KNVB crest (Royal Dutch Football Association) in addition to an orange v-neck collar and colors of the Netherlands flag on the inside back of the neck collar.

Bayern Munich Starlet Julian Green Opts for German U-19 Team; USA Still Hopeful

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German-American youngster Julian Green, who was born in Tampa, Florida, has opted to continue representing Germany at the U-19 level. This comes just weeks after his first-team Bayern Munich debut. The highly rated winger represented the United States at the U-18 level and has already caught the eye of US Head Coach and Technical Director Jürgen Klinsmann who tried to call Green into the US camp before friendlies last month.

League Cup Semi-Final Qualification Will Now Boost West Ham United’s Premier League Form

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West Ham's 2-1 comeback victory at White Hart Lane in the League Cup could give the Hammers the confidence needed to push on during this festive period. Sam Allardyce's second half tactical changes led directly to both Hammers goals and made a complicated week for Spurs even more difficult.

Big Sam will be happy not only that his second half tactical moves resulted in the shift that took place from Spurs in control to a West Ham victory, but also that the attacking impetus and cutting edge so often lacking in front of goal returned in the decisive moments of the match.

Nominate The ‘EPL Talk Podcast’ In The 2013 Stitcher Awards

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If you've ever listened to an episode of the EPL Talk Podcast, we'd like to ask a favor of you that'll take just 30 seconds.

We'd love it if you'd nominate us to be in the running for an award. Stitcher is asking for suggestions of which podcasts to include in the category of 'Best Sports Commentary.

Google Will Acquire US Media Rights to MLS and USMNT Games, Predicts Industry Publication

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Journalist John Ourand, who writes for sports media industry publication Sports Business Daily,predicts that the upcoming rights deal for Major League Soccer will see Google come out as the winner, picking up a portion of the US media rights to MLS and USMNT games.

The current deal between ESPN and MLS, which was agreed in 2006, and expires in 2014, was packaged together with rights to home USMNT games.

Ryan Giggs Should Take Mentorship Role With Adnan Januzaj at Manchester United

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Manchester United David Moyes was wise to point out the inconsistency of officials towards his young starlet Adnan Januzaj after the 3-0 victory over Aston Villa on Sunday. However the youngster will need to learn to toughen up as so many before him have.

Moyes said:

"I think in every game recently, I don't know how many tackles have been on Januzaj.

Nigeria Home Shirt For World Cup 2014 In Brazil: Leaked [PHOTOS]

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It's no surprise that the Super Eagles will be wearing green as the home shirt for Nigeria in World Cup 2014, but what is a surprise is the different shades of green that the team's home shirt will include.

Designed and manufactured by adidas, Nigeria's home shirt for World Cup 2014 is a light green shirt with thin vertical lines down the front of the shirt, as well as darker green sleeves.

Tim Sherwood’s Tactical Change and Reliance On Emmanuel Adebayor Shows Poor Judgment

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Following the sacking of Andre Villas-Boas, speculation has grown about the reintegration of Emmanuel Adebayor into the Tottenham side. In yesterday's League Cup match against West Ham, caretaker manager Tim Sherwood fielded a 4-4-2 formation with Adebayor and Jermain Defoe starting up top. The Togolese striker scored the game's initial goal, but West Ham's second half tactical changes stimulated a comeback that saw Spurs lose to the otherwise struggling Hammers for the second time in three months at home.

Watch ‘World Soccer Radio’, Live at 9pm ET: Tonight’s Topics: Football Chairmen & Everton’s Loan Haven [VIDEO]

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Tonight, Nick Geber and Danny Page chat about whether your club's owner has the team's best interest of the team at heart or is just stroking his ego, as well as whether Everton are becoming a loan haven. Plus, Nick plays 'Prem Prognostication.' He'll tell you what the table will look like come January 2.

James McCarthy’s Return Will Help Everton To A Fruitful Festive Period

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Flying high in the table and cutting teams to ribbons with vibrant, offensive play, there has naturally been a lot of chatter about Everton this season.

A section of it has been a little negative perhaps born out of envy with critics bemoaning Roberto Martinez's astute use of the loan system.

Bayern Munich Home Shirt For 2014/15 Season: Leaked [PHOTO]

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An image of Bayern Munich's home shirt for the 2014/15 shirt has been leaked on the Internet.

For the 2014/15 season, Bayern Munich will return to wearing a shirt design that features blue and red stripes.The last time Bayern had worn a blue-red striped kit was in 1995-96, when they won the UEFA Cup.

Manchester City Facing Defensive Crisis: Will Dedryck Boyata Get the Call?

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Manchester City's defense has been so creaky away from the Etihad this season that some, myself included, wrote off the Blues as title contenders. But following a strong spell of thirteen out of a possible fifteen points, City find themselves once again within earshot of the top of the table.

On Tuesday night in Leicester, City progressed to the semifinals of the League Cup but it was at a great cost.

David Beckham MLS Team Has Narrowed Miami Stadium Choices, Says Source

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This afternoon, I had a lengthy conversation with a well-placed source that indicated that following yesterday's unanimous Miami-Dade County Commission vote, the ownership group of a potential Miami MLS franchise that is fronted by David Beckham could make an announcement before the end of December as to the group's plans.

Draw for Semi-Finals of the Capital One Cup Revealed

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The draw for the semi-finals of the 2013/14 Capital One Cup has been announced, and it sets up the prospect of being an all-Manchester final if both City and United can win their respective semi-final matches.

In the semi-final of the Capital One Cup, the draw is as follows:

Sunderland vs Manchester United, and

Manchester City vs West Ham United.

Audio Problems On beIN SPORT Plague Beginning of Manchester United’s Capital One Cup Victory Against Stoke

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Viewers of today's Capital One Cup quarter-final on beIN SPORT between Stoke City and Manchester United were in for a surprise. Fielding the commentary team of Phil Schoen and Ray Hudson from the beIN SPORT studio in Florida, the audio feed from the ground kept cutting in and out and quite possibly seemed to be from another match.

Real Madrid Away Shirt for 2014/15 Season; And It’s Pink! Leaked [PHOTO]

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A photo has been leaked on the Internet showing Real Madrid's away shirt for the 2014/15 season.

Remarkably, Real Madrid will be wearing a pink/fuscia-colored shirt. The shirt will be complemented by a white trim. Without a doubt, this shirt will stand out in La Liga and the Champions League next season.

Watch Stoke vs Man United and Spurs vs West Ham, Capital One Cup Live at 2:45pm ET: Open Thread

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After yesterday's shock result that saw Sunderland beat Chelsea to make it to the Capital One Cup semi-final, we have two matches being played today with big implications.

Manchester United is a small step away from playing in the Capital One Cup semi-final at Wembley, but they face a tough Stoke City side in their path.

Tottenham Chairman Daniel Levy Faces the Biggest Decision Of His 12-Year Tenure

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Daniel Levy this week took the decision to dismiss Tottenham Head Coach Andre Villas-Boas, although the official line will read that the Portuguese coach's departure was by mutual consent, we can be pretty sure this was a measure taken by the club. This decision came after Tottenham have endured a difficult period following their impressive start to the season, goals have been hard to come by for Spurs whilst goals at the wrong end of the pitch have been conceded with an all too worrying regularity as Manchester City and most recently Liverpool found out.

Gattuso Investigation Is Another Sign Soccer Needs to Take Match Fixing More Seriously

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The revelation that Gennaro Gattuso, the former AC Milan star, is being investigated for match fixing hit soccer like a ton of bricks yesterday. While match-fixing and scandals have become commonplace in Italian soccer, Gattuso would be perhaps the biggest name to be linked with this sort of investigation.

Chelsea Home and Away Shirts For 2014/15 Season: Leaked [PHOTOS]

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Images have been revealed on the Internet claiming to be the designs for Chelsea's home and away shirts for the 2014/15 season.

We'll have to wait and see whether these are accurate, but if true, Chelsea's home shirt for the 2014/15 season will feature the classic blue and white design of the Blues, with a design that features very thin hoops across the chest of the shirt.

Jose Mourinho Risks Abramovich’s Iron Fist If He Switches Chelsea’s Tactics to Be More Defensive

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Following another poor defensive display by Chelsea, this time in a Capital One Cup 2-1 AET loss to Sunderland, Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has strongly implied he might reign in his side's tactics, resembling more of the Jose 1.0 side that allowed Chelsea to claim back-to-back Premier League trophies as well as three domestic cup competitions in the Portuguese manager's previous stint at Stamford Bridge.

4 Reasons Why A Jermain Defoe Transfer from Spurs to Toronto Would Be a Smart Move

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While the sacking of Andre Villas-Boas is the Tottenham story making the most noise in England at the moment, another important development at Spurs is the potential move of Jermain Defoe to Major League Soccer's struggling side Toronto FC. Toronto, managed by former Defoe teammate and long-time English Premier League defender Ryan Nelson, is set to make the 31 year-old Spurs striker the highest paid player in the history of top flight football in North America.

Watch ‘World Soccer Radio’, Live at 9pm ET: Tonight’s Topics: Chelsea Exit & Who’s Next At Spurs [VIDEO]

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Tonight, Nick Geber and Danny Page chat about Chelsea's shock defeat in the Capital One Cup against Sunderland, who'll take permanent charge of Tottenham Hotspur, the situation at Hull City and the latest developments regarding match fixing.

Listen/watch tonight at 9PM ET. Chime in via Twitter@worldsocceradioor call in to the studio at 800-878-PLAY.

Manchester City Home Shirt for 2014-15 Season: Leaked [PHOTO]

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An image of Manchester City's home shirt for the 2014/15 season has been leaked on the Internet.

According to the new image, Manchester City's home shirt for next season will be similar to City's 2013/14 shirt except for a few notable changes. In the 2014/15 shirt, the collar is a classical convertible collar instead of a rounded collar.

Liverpool Open Talks to Make Luis Suárez Their Highest Paid Player Ever: Nightly Soccer Report

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Liverpool managing director Ian Ayre has opened talks with Liverpool striker Luis Suarez to discuss renewing his contract to make him the highest paid Reds player ever.

According to The Telegraph newspaper, Ayre flew to Barcelona today for a meeting with Suarez's agent to extend the Uruguayan's deal and increase his salary to more than £130,000 per week.

Sunderland Knock Chelsea Out Of The Capital One Cup [VIDEO]

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With the score tied at 1-1 with just two minutes to go in the 30 minutes of added extra time, Sunderland midfielderKi Sung-Yueng scored a goal to send Sunderland through to the semi-finals of the Capital One Cup after sending Chelsea crashing out of the tournament.

Chelsea dominated the 90 minutes, but Sunderland were the better side in the 30 added extra minutes of the match, never giving up.

How Luis Suarez’s Numbers Compare to Ronaldo, Zlatan, Aguero and Lewandowski

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Before this season, we knew of Luis Suarez's prowess as a talented yet controversial figure. The Liverpool forward had 23 goals in the 2012-2013 season, second to only Robin van Persie (26). In the same season he accumulated ten yellow cards for his behavior. He recorded two hat tricks against Wigan and Norwich.

FA Charges Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere With Making Insulting and Abusive Gesture

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The Football Association has charged Jack Wilshere retrospectively with making an offensive and/or insulting and/or abusive gesture in Arsenal's match against Manchester City this past weekend.

According to a statement from The FA,

"The charge follows an alleged gesture made during the fixture between Manchester City and Arsenal at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday 14 December.

Sulley Muntari’s Wish of Facing Atletico Madrid in the Champions League Will Be One He Regrets

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Make no mistake about it, Atletico Madrid are on the radar of every football expert in Europe and week after week they are picking up a sizeable following amongst the average fan. The club has been amassing trophies over the past few years despite selling off some of their more prized assets to European clubs.

Did Tim Sherwood Push Daniel Levy to Oust Andre Villas-Boas at Tottenham Hotspur?

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Over the past 24 hours, speculation has begun to mount regarding the somewhat bizarre manner in which Andre Villas-Boas was sacked by Tottenham Chairman Daniel Levy and the connection to new caretaker manager Tim Sherwood.

The Telegraph has an excellent story penned by Jason Burt describing the breakdown in the relationship between Villas-Boas and Levy.

As MLS, NASL and USL PRO Expand, the US Soccer Talent Pool Becomes More Diluted

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USL PRO, the third-tier of American soccer, recently completed its Annual General Meeting in Clearwater, Florida. Like the leagues directly above it, USL PRO is in full-fledged expansion mode, adding new teams to its roster each season and now sporting an affiliation agreement with Major League Soccer (MLS) to play host to the reserve league.

Watch World Soccer Radio Tonight, Live at 9pm ET: Tonight’s Topic: AVB Aftermath at Spurs [VIDEO]

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Tonight, Nick Geber and Danny Page chat about the sacking of Tottenham Hotspur manager Andre Villas-Boas, and where Spurs go from here. Plus, the duo tackle the situation at West Bromwich Albion, and whether the board of directors made the correct decision to give Steve Clarke the heave-ho.

The special guest tonight will be World Soccer Talk's Kartik Krishnaiyer.

La Liga Roundup, Gameweek 16: Barca and Atleti Are Neck and Neck as Madrid Slip Up

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Barcelona and Atletico Madridboth won again to remain level at the top of La Liga as Atleti's three-goal margin brought them exactly level with the Catalans on points, wins and goal difference. Ten-man Real Madrid salvaged a draw at lowly Osasuna to trail the top two by five points.

Atletico Madrid survived an even first half at the Vicente Calderon to overcome fading Valencia 3-0.

View the TV/Internet Schedule of Capital One Cup Quarter-Finals for Matches on Tuesday & Wednesday

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As we head into the hectic period of the 2013/14 season with matches coming thick and fast, the English football sides have their first opportunity to grab a piece of silverware with the Capital One Cup. But they first have to fend their way through the quarter-finals of the tournament.

Three of the four matches this week are available via beIN SPORT.

5 Things We Learned from Serie A This Weekend: Gameweek 16

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After a full schedule of Serie A matches over the weekend and going into Monday, it's time to reflect on what five things we learned from Italy's top flight from this past weekend.

1. Juventus may have faltered in the Champions League, but their domestic dominance remains unstoppable.

NBC Announces Premier League US TV Schedule For Boxing Day and New Year’s Day

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Two of the favorite days for most Premier League soccer fans in any calendar year are Boxing Day and New Year's Day. Reason being is that both days typically offer a full gameweek of matches in a 24-48 hour span.

Boxing Day, on December 26, will be a good day to request a paid time off from your work.

Aston Villa Need a Plan B For Their Home Matches at Villa Park

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I was at Villa Park yesterday to see under pressure Manchester United take on Aston Villa. The atmosphere pre-game was low key from the home supporters, which was surprising given United were on a two game losing streak in the league and were under huge pressure to get three points. The Manchester United fans, however, were fantastic.

Liverpool Revels Under Brendan Rodgers’ Blueprint; Sacked Andre Villas-Boas Should Take Note

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Identity is such an important concept in soccer. It's formed by a variety of facets; from the badge, stadium, name, kit color and history. In the modern game, a key part of a team's identity is the brand of soccer they play, which is essentially the stylistic representation of a manager's principles.

Chelsea Manager Jose Mourinho Is A Shadow Of Himself

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For the past ten years, Jose Mourinho has been the titan on the world stage of soccer management. Records have been casually swatted aside with contemptuous ease. The force of his personality was simply too powerful to be contained but now that force appears to be slowly ebbing away.

Before we look at this slow steady decline though, we must remember the decade of excellence.

It’s Time For Danny Welbeck to Seize His Opportunity at Manchester United

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Robin van Persie's latest injuryhas opened the door once again for Manchester United's prodigal son who could fire his club and England to great heights in the next six months. Following months of injury and inertia, Danny Welbeck's brace Sunday at Villa Park could be a sign of things to come in 2014.

Luis Suarez Deserves to be Included In Messi vs Ronaldo Debate: Monday Soccer Insider

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Luis Suarezdoes things that no other attacking player in the world does. All of the discussion about who is better, Ronaldo or Messi, deserves to have Suarez included in the conversation. But that Suarez plays at a club that hasn't featured in Champions League since the 2009-10 season and because of his own self-inflicted bad boy image (as contrasted with the carefully crafted Messi persona), he isn't getting the mentions in the discussion he deserves.

Watch Newcastle Deck Premier League Referee Mike Jones, Followed By a Bench-Clearing Brawl [VIDEO]

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In a hotly contested match between Newcastle United and Southampton at St James' Park on Saturday, Premier League referee Mike Jones was inadvertently struck in the face by Newcastle'sMoussa Sissoko, forcing the ref to get treatment to recover from the blow.

Just minutes later, a foul on Newcastle United'sMassadio Haïdara by Morgan Schneiderlin resulted in a bench-clearing brawl, resulting in two coaches being sent to the stands.

Watch Manchester City 6-3 Arsenal Match Highlights [VIDEO]

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Manchester City completely blew open the Premier League title race today with an emphatic 6-3 victory against Arsenal at Etihad Stadium.

It was a match that had a little bit of everything. There were nine goals. Jack Wilshere made an obscene gesture that could land him in trouble with The FA.

West Bromwich Albion Sack Steve Clarke; Bah Humbug to WBA’s Board of Directors

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Steve Clarke has been sacked as manager of West Bromwich Albion.

The following is the statement from the club with my editorial comments in yellow:

"West Bromwich Albion have this evening relieved Head Coach Steve Clarke of his duties and placed him on gardening leave with immediate effect.

Tottenham Hotspur vs Liverpool, Gameweek 16: Open Thread

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The pressure continues to mount on Premier League managers today as David Moyes, Chris Hughton and Andre Villas-Boas will be looking for their sides to win today to take pressure off their shoulders with mounting expectations.

With Arsenal's defeat yesterday and the Premier League title race opening up, Manchester United have an opportunity to close the gap between them and the league leaders with a victory against Villa today.

Here’s a Leaked Photo of the Ball That MLS Will Use In 2014 [PHOTO]

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A photograph has been leaked that features the official adidas ball that Major League Soccer will use during the 2014 season.

Named "Prime," the official match ball is a cousin to the ball that'll be used in World Cup 2014 (named Brazuca).

MLS's ball for 2014 has many of the characteristics that Brazucahas except for a different color scheme, the name of the ball and MLS Commissioner Don Garber's signature.

Russia Away Shirt For World Cup 2014: Leaked [PHOTO]

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A photo has been leaked on the Internet featuring Russia's away/change shirt that they'll be wearing at World Cup 2014 in Brazil.

Designed and manufactured by adidas, Russia's away shirt is a uniquely designed white jersey with waves of different shades of blue covering the upper chest and upper sleeves.

You Can Hate Luis Suarez, But You Must Also Appreciate His Genius

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Luis Suarez is just one of thoseplayerswho opposing fans just can't stand.The meremention of his name sends a wave of negative feelings through people's bodies. The Uruguayan striker's well documented controversies and flashpoints haven't helped his public perception. Even his facial features give the impression of a deceitful person who is meant not to be trusted.

SPURned (EPL Talk Review Podcast)

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Opportunities and goals all over the Premier League, just not evenly shared as sides get brushed aside or fail to make an impression at all. Managers on the end and Steve Clarke is over it as AVB reiterates the idea that he isn't a quitter.

Rodgers will be happy with himself whilst Moyes gets little credit for a routine win.

Tottenham Hotspur Sack Manager Andre Villas-Boas

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Tottenham Hotspur have sacked manager Andre Villas-Boas with immediate effect.

The club reports that:

"The Club can announce that agreement has been reached with Head Coach, Andre Villas-Boas, for the termination of his services. The decision was by mutual consent and in the interests of all parties.

UEFA Champions League Draw for the Round of 16 Revealed

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The draw for the Round of 16 in the 2013/14 UEFA Champions League tournament has been made, and there are some several mouthwatering matchups.

The Round of 16 matches will feature:

Manchester City vs Barcelona

Olympiacos vs Manchester United

AC Milan vs Atletico Madrid

Bayer Leverkusen vs Paris Saint-Germain

Galatasaray vs Chelsea

Schalke vs Real Madrid

Zenit St Petersburg vs Borussia Dortmund

Arsenal vs Bayern Munich

Manchester City paid the price for Manuel Pellegrini's mistake in their match against Bayern Munich by being drawn against Barcelona in the Round of 16.

UEFA Europa League Draw for the Round of 32 and Round of 16 Revealed

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The draw for the Round of 32 of the 2013/14 UEFA Europa League has been made this morning, with the following matches featured:

Dnipro vs Tottenham Hotspur
Real Betis vs Rubin Kazan
Swansea City vs Napoli
Juventus vs Trabzonspor
Maribor vs Sevilla
Plzen vs Shakhtar Donetsk
Chornomorets vs Lyon
Lazio vs Ludogorets
Esbjerg vs Fiorentina
Ajax vs Salzburg
Maccabi Tel-Aviv vs Basel
Porto vs Frankfurt
Anji vs Genk
Dynamo Kiev vs Valencia
PAOK vs Benfica
Liberec vs AZ Alkmaar

UEFA also made the draw for the Round of 16 today, which will feature:

Liberec or AZ Alkmaar vs Anji or Genk
Lazio or Ludogorets vs Dynamo Kiev or Valencia
Porto or Frankfurt vs Swansea or Napoli
Chornomorets or Lyon vs Plzen or Shakhtar Donetsk
Maribor or Sevilla vs Real Betis or Rubin Kazan
Dnipro or Tottenham vs PAOK or Benfica
Maccabi Tel Aviv or Basel vs Ajax or Salzburg
Juventus or Trabzonspor vs Esbjerg or Fiorentina.

Why Andre Villas-Boas Deserved More Time and Support As Tottenham Manager

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Perhaps it was the relationship between the tabloids and his predecessor Harry Redknapp. Maybe it was the fact he never played soccer at a professional level. Or maybe it was his attitude, but for whatever reason the knives were out for Andre Villas-Boas from the very beginning of his Tottenham Hotspur tenure.

Zabaleta Escapes Penalty Claim & Clarke Loses West Brom Job After Long Denied Penalty: EPL Referee Decisions

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An action packed weekend in the Premier League saw 30 goals and a number of controversial refereeing decisions. Some of the key decisions and my views on them are discussed below.

The first game of the weekend was Manchester City vs Arsenal and it certainly lived up to the pre-match hype and expectation.

FOX Confirms Renewal Of UEFA Champions League Rights In US For 2015-18

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FOX Sports today confirmed that it won the bid to renew the US media rights to the UEFA Champions League for seasons 2015-18.

The news regarding the renewal of the rights deal broke on December 6, but today's official announcement from FOX shines more light on the deal.

Some of the interesting revelations are:

1.

Why Flamini, Busquets, Vidal and Lahm Prove Why Defensive Midfielders Play Such A Key Role In the Modern Game

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In the past, defensive midfielders were widely considered to be the midfielders who did the "dirty work." Defensive midfielders were and still are underrated and appreciated. They are generally viewed as aggressive, wild and cynical; which, of course, many are. However, they also possess other traits.

Will Liverpool Finish In The Top Four This Premier League Season?

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Liverpool is one of the most storied clubs in the English football. They've won 18 league titles, 8 League Cups, 7 FA Cups, 5 Champions League titles, 3 Europa League titles and 3 Super Cups. They've had a host of brilliant players don their traditional red kit but as of late they've been flat. They haven't won a league title since the 1989 season and they've made a host of awful transfers that have plagued the team and left fans burying their heads.

beIN SPORT Expands Access Into More Homes Across United States

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In the past two weeks, there have been several developments regarding the availability of beIN SPORT to bring the sports network into more homes across the United States of America.

RCN Cable subscribers, who get the Premiere Sports package, can now access beIN SPORT in Chicago, Boston, New York and Washington DC.

Last Minute Christmas Gift Ideas for Soccer Fans

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It's less than two weeks until Christmas Day, so if you're like me and you haven't had a chance to finish your holiday shopping, now's the time to turn to online shopping and surfing the Internet for last minute Christmas present ideas.

To make the shopping ordeal smoother, I've put together a holiday gift guide for soccer fans, which features several ideas of last minute gift suggestions including everything from World Cup shirts to video games and the best soccer books.

Colombia Away Shirt for FIFA World Cup 2014 From adidas: Leaked [PHOTO]

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A photo of Colombia's away/change shirt that the national team will wear during FIFA World Cup 2014 has been leaked on the Internet.

While Colombia's home shirt for World Cup 2014 will be a bright yellow, the away/change shirt for Colombia for 2014 is red in color and features black and white trim.

AS Roma Home and Away Shirts for 2014/15 Season From Nike [PHOTO]

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For the 2013/14 Serie A season, AS Roma have been wearing home, away and third kits designed and manufactured by the club itself. But beginning with the 2014/15 season, Roma will wear Nike uniforms with the famous Swoosh logo emblazoned across the chest.

Roma's home shirt for 2014/15 will feature a maroon-colored shirt and yellow trim.

Jurgen Klinsmann Agrees Four-Year Contract Extension to USMNT Head Coach Job

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Jurgen Klinsmann has signed a four-year extension to his contract as coach of the US Men's National Team.

It's a wise decision by the US Soccer Federation to extend Klinsmann's contract given that there were reports that Switzerland was interested in hiring Klinsmann to coach their national team.

Europa League, Matchday 6: Open Thread

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There are 17 Europa League matches scheduled to be shown live on US television and Internet today, with plenty on the line on the final day of the Europa League group stage.

For Swansea, the Welsh club needs a draw to guarantee a place in the next round of the Europa League, which would be the first time in the team's history that the club has reached a second phase of a European tournament.

4 Reasons Why Jose Mourinho’s New-Look Chelsea Are Premier League Title Contenders

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Under the guidance of Jose Mourinho, Chelsea are looking like the best team in the Premier League again. Whether or not they really are remains up for debate, but they do look like the real deal under Mourinho this year. Last year Chelsea finished a distant third from the Manchester clubs, but Mourinho has changed the system, and they might win the Premier League by a distance as a result.

Chile Pokes Fun at Netherlands and Australia Ahead of World Cup 2014 [VIDEO]

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We're over six months away from World Cup 2014 kicking off in Brazil, but a beer company in Chile is already poking fun at their opponents that the national soccer team will be facing in Group B.

Cristal, a Chilean beer company, has produced two videos thus far — one aimed at poking fun at the Netherlands, and another one trying to scare the Australia supporters.

Bayern Munich Right to Scrutinize Ballon d’Or Vote After Questionable Changes By FIFA

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FC Bayern President Uli Hoeness has publicly stated Bayern Munich will scrutinize balloting for FIFA's World Footballer of the Year award that came in after the initial November 15 deadline. Bayern's Franck Ribery, who has already been named European Footballer of the year, was thought to be the favorite for the FIFA award until balloting was extended.

Intel Signs Innovative Sponsorship Deal With FC Barcelona to Advertise On Inside of Shirt: Daily Soccer Report

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Intel has signed an innovative sponsorship deal with Barcelona to advertise the Intel logo on the inside of the shirt.

Under the new deal, Intel becomes Barcelona's official tech sponsor and will "will help FC Barcelona to become one of the most technologically advanced clubs in the world," according to a report on the FC Barcelona club website.

Half-Naked Women Storm German TV Talk Show, Shouting “Boycott FIFA Mafia” [VIDEO]

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Two women and a male accomplice stormed a German TV talk show today, disrupting the program and shouting "Boycott FIFA mafia" over and over again in front of the TV cameras on live TV.

The activists were protesting the working conditions in Qatar. The country has come under a lot of criticism after media reports revealed that many of the workers that are building the infrastructure for World Cup 2022 are working in slave conditions.

Wayne Rooney Transfer to Chelsea Could Be Back On, Says Report

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Chelsea have been encouraged to make a fresh new bid for Wayne Rooney since the Manchester United star has yet to be offered a new contract, according to a report today in The Mirror. The prolonged transfer saga this summer that saw Rooney eventually give a world-class performance against Chelsea and then withdraw his transfer request may have prevented the Blues from shopping more aggressively for attacking help in the summer window.

Watch or Listen to World Soccer Radio From 9pm-10pm ET; Topics: Champions League and MLS Viewership

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Tonight's episode of World Soccer Radio features host Nick Geber and guest Danny Page discussing all of today's action from the UEFA Champions League, as well as the MLS viewership numbers.

The live broadcast of World Soccer Radio begins at 6pm PT/9pm ET and runs until 7pm PT/10pm ET. The show is on every weeknight, and features Nick Geber, best known for his Fox Football Friday and World Soccer Daily shows.

Borussia Dortmund Commentators Go Wild After Last Gasp Winner in Champions League [VIDEO]

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In the last five minutes of UEFA Champions League action yesterday, it looked like Napoli's 2-0 lead over Arsenal was going to be enough to help the Italian side qualify for the next round of the tournament and to kick Borussia Dortmund out. The Bundesliga club were tied 1-1 with Olympique Marseille.

Bayern Munich Prepare to Conquer United States

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FC Bayern was at one time one of the most popular European soccer clubs in the United States. That was before the sport and particularly the European club game exploded in popularity. Bayern's last visit to the United States was in 2004. The Bundesliga club has visited China and India more recently than the USA.

Japan Away Shirt for FIFA World Cup 2014: Leaked [PHOTO]

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A photo of Japan's away/change shirt for FIFA World Cup 2014 has been leaked on the Internet.

Designed and manufactured by adidas, Japan's away shirt is in sharp contrast to Japan's home shirt for World Cup 2014. Japan's away shirt for Brazil 2014 is a fluorescent yellow with navy blue trim.

World Cup 2014 Draw Reaction From USA and England Supporters [VIDEO]

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Camera crews from Budweiser went out into the streets around the world last week to interview the fans and their reaction to the FIFA 2014 World Cup Draw.

In the United States, an average of 489,000 viewers tuned into the 2014 FIFA World Cup Draw on ESPN2. What wasn't included in that number were the tens of thousands of soccer fans across the United States who watched the draw in their local bar or pub.

UEFA Champions League, Wednesday Matchday 6: Open Thread

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Pictured above, on a cold and cloudy day, is the Emirates Stadium that is literally lighting up the north London sky. The Arsenal grounds crew had the heating lights switched on to make sure the pitch received as much artificial sunlight as possible so the pitch can look in pristine condition while the team is away in Italy to play today's important match against Napoli.

Chelsea Consider Offering Cash Plus Kevin De Bruyne for Julian Draxler: Daily Soccer Report

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Chelsea are considering a cash plus Kevin De Bruyne deal to bring Julian Draxler from Schalke to Stamford Bridge. The deal may happen as early as the January transfer window.

Draxler is reportedly unhappy at Schalke after being played as a winger instead of his preferred central attacking midfield position.

Google Chromecast Product Review: How Useful Is It For Soccer Fans?

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Editor's note: Chromecast is a new technology from Google that allows you to plug it into a HDMI port on your television, and then you can literally "fling" programs from your mobile, tablet or laptop device to your TV screen, so you can watch it on your TV instead of the device that's sitting on or next to your lap.

Experiencing the Thrilling Ride of Everton’s Last 2 Weeks: The Heart Of English Football

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What a week.

It's been a while since I last wrote about Everton, so let me fill you in on a wonderful few days for supporters of the club.

I'd just about calmed down ahead of the home game against Stoke City following a ferocious Merseyside Derby the week previous. So often with these sorts of games it's a case of ‘after the Lord Mayors show': the fans are a little subdued, there is a danger the players might not be quite as up for it and talk pre-match typically centres round the last week's game, not the upcoming one.

Evaluating Arsenal, Chelsea, Man United, Man City and Liverpool’s Premier League Title Chances

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Manchester United has been ripped by critics in the past week as being in a free-fall. But looking at the coming fixtures and anticipating the potential trouble ahead for the sides ahead of the Red Devils in the table, it is not unreasonable to believe David Moyes side can still mount a serious title challenge.

Galatasaray Knock Juventus Out of UEFA Champions League With Wesley Sneijder Goal [GIF]

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Galatasaray midfielder Wesley Sneijder knocked Juventus out of the UEFA Champions League after scoring the only goal of the game on a muddy pitch in Istanbul.

The match between Galatasaray and Juventus kicked off yesterday, but was abandoned due to heavy snow. Both clubs continued playing the match today on a muddy pitch where grounds crew had worked overnight to clear the snow.

Atletico Madrid Have Broken Barcelona and Real Madrid’s Stranglehold On Spanish Football

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Over the past ten seasons, Barcelona and Real Madrid have finished first and second in La Liga eight times. During that time, only two clubs have been able to break through the Spanish giants' dominance ofthe Primera Division: Valencia (who finished in first place in 2003/04) and Villarreal (who were runners-up in 2007/08).

Watch ‘Keane & Vieira: The Best Of Enemies’ TV Documentary, In Full [VIDEO]

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ITV last night debuted the brand-new documentary entitled Keane & Vieira: The Best Of Enemies, which features interviews and footage of Roy Keane and Patrick Vieira.

The TV documentary has gotten a lot of publicity this week, namely due to Keane spouting off a lot of criticism and opinions about Sir Alex Ferguson.

Galatasaray vs Juventus, UEFA Champions League Matchday 6: Open Thread

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Yesterday's match between Galatasaray and Juventus in the UEFA Champions League was abandoned after a heavy snow and hail storm made the match unplayable.

It's currently half time at the Galatasaray stadium, with the scores level at nil-nil. The first half playing conditions on the pitch have been extremely poor, but both teams are trying to do the best they can under the circumstances.

Manchester City Beat Manchester United and Barca to Sign Argentine Starlet

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Bruno Zuculini, who is considered by many the top holding midfielder in the Argentine League, will sign for Manchester City next summer, despite interest from Manchester United and Barcelona, according to Goal. A fee has been agreed between Manchester City and Zucilini's current club Racing in Argentina according to the report.

Manchester City Manager Manuel Pellegrini Miscalculates Goal Difference Against Bayern Munich [VIDEO]

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Needing only a single goal late on to win Champions League Group D, Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini evidently was unaware of the situation.

When James Milner gave the Blues a 3-2 lead in the 62nd minute, City needed a single goal to top the group but the manager evidently thought City needed to strike twice.

Record Audience for ESPN2’s FIFA World Cup Draw: Nightly Soccer Report

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Last Friday's Final Draw for the 2014 FIFA World Cup on ESPN2 averaged 489,000 viewers, based on a 0.3 U.S. household rating, making it the most-watched FIFA World Cup Draw on the ESPN networks, according to Nielsen Media.

The audience grew by 34 percent in viewers and 14 percent in households over the previous high for a World Cup Draw on ESPN's networks.

Mexico Away Shirt for FIFA World Cup 2014: Leaked [PHOTO]

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A photograph of Mexico's away/change shirt for FIFA World Cup 2014 has been leaked on the Internet.

Mexico's away shirt for Brazil 2014 is a bright orange shirt with black trim. The distinctive-colored shirt looks like something that the Netherlands would wear, but El Tri will be wearing it in 2014 as their change shirt.

A Review of ‘Always Managing, the Harry Redknapp Autobiography’: An Enigma Who’s Always Puzzled

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Autobiographies always tell a story. Just like the newest John Grisham lawyer drama, an autobiography is an attempt to weave a story out of common human experience and present the reader with a linear series of events meant to entertain and impress. Whereas fiction relies on real elements to sell an imagined tale, autobiographies and their cousins – biographies – rely on facts that have been or can be experienced by the reader, just through a different viewpoint.

Roy Keane Names His Manchester United Dream Team; Features Glaring Omissions

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Roy Keane has continued to make headlines recently by taking shots at his old boss Sir Alex Ferguson and the club he captained for years, Manchester United. Now Keane has revealed his all-time Manchester United XI from the Premier League era and it is more notable for its absences than who is on the team.

UEFA Champions League, Tuesday Matchday 6: Open Thread

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Even though Manchester United, Manchester City, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain have already qualified for the knockout round of the UEFA Champions League, there's still plenty to play for today.

If Galatasaray beats Juventus, the Turkish club will qualify for the next round.

MLS Cup 2013 Down 44% In Viewership; Sets Record As Least-Viewed MLS Cup Ever

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Saturday's live broadcast of the 2013 MLS Cup on ESPN had an average viewing audience of 505,000, which is the least-viewed MLS Cup ever on English-language television.

The previous record low was the 748,000 viewers who watched the 2010 MLS Cup between Colorado Rapids and FC Dallas. That game had a 0.

Why the U.S. Will Make it to the Knockout Stage of FIFA World Cup 2014

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With the US being drawn into the group of death for next summer's World Cup, I understand many people's view that they will not make it out of the group. Being drawn into the group of death may actually come as a blessing in disguise for the USMNT, as it could be an open group where anything can happen.

4 Changes David Moyes Needs to Make to Turn Manchester United’s Season Around

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Manchester United's recent run of poor performances has only increased the pressure on David Moyes. A home loss to Everton should have galvanized United to respond against Newcastle, especially given that it was yet another home fixture.

Come kickoff on Saturday though, there was no response whatsoever.

Where to Find the UEFA Champions League and Europa League On US TV and Internet This Week

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In the final week of the group stages of the 2013/14 UEFA Champions League and Europa League matches, here's the TV and Internet schedule for all matches that are being shown live to viewers in the United States.

All times Eastern. Schedule is subject to change.

UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

Tuesday, December 10:

Manchester United vs Shakhtar Donetsk, 2:45pm, FOX Sports 1 andFOX Soccer 2Go
Bayern Munich vs Manchester City, 2:45pm, FOX Soccer Plus andFOX Soccer 2Go
Galatasaray vs Juventus, 2:45pm, FOX Sports 2 andFOX Soccer 2Go
Benfica vs Paris Saint-Germain, 2:45pm, FSN andFOX Soccer 2Go
Copenhagen vs Real Madrid, 2:45pm,FOX Soccer 2Go
Viktoria Plzen vs CSKA Moscow, 2:45pm,FOX Soccer 2Go
Olympiacos vs Anderlecht, 2:45pm,FOX Soccer 2Go
Real Sociedad vs Bayer Leverkusen, 2:45pm,FOX Soccer 2Go

Wednesday, December 11:

Napoli vs Arsenal, 2:45pm, FOX Sports 1 andFOX Soccer 2Go
Chelsea vs Steaua Bucharest, 2:45pm, FOX Soccer Plus andFOX Soccer 2Go
AC Milan vs Ajax, 2:45pm, FOX Sports 2 andFOX Soccer 2Go
Barcelona vs Celtic, 2:45pm, FSN andFOX Soccer 2Go
Schalke vs Basel, 2:45pm, FOX Soccer Plus andFOX Soccer 2Go
Atletico Madrid vs Porto, 2:45pm,FOX Soccer 2Go
Marseille vs Borussia Dortmund, 2:45pm,FOX Soccer 2Go
Austria Vienna vs Zenit St Petersburg, 2:45pm,FOX Soccer 2Go

UEFA EUROPA LEAGUE

Thursday, December 12:

St Gallen vs Swansea City, 12:30pm, FOX Sports 1 andFOX Soccer 2Go
Maribor vs Wigan, 1pm, FOX Sports 2 andFOX Soccer 2Go
PSV Eindhoven vs Chornomorets, 1pm, ESPN3.

Ex-England Captain Mick Mills Denies Turning Blind Eye to Stoke ‘Abuse’: Daily Soccer Report

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Former Stoke City trainee George Blackstock has filed a civil case against Stoke City, seeking damages after he claims that he suffered post traumatic stress due to initiations that were carried out by the club under the management of Stoke City manager, and former England captain, Mick Mills.

Mills is accused of turning a blind eye to what allegedly happened at the club — which included sexual attacks, pranks and other initiation ceremonies.

Top 5 Surprises in the Championship So Far This Season

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We are fast approaching Christmas and the Sky Bet Championship is really taking shape. Like every other season, the Championship has already thrown up some real surprises. Here are the five things that have made it an eye-opening first half of the season.

1. Burnley leading the way

Very few people would have predicted Burnley to be in the automatic promotion places as we head into the middle of December.

Roy Keane’s Grudge is That Manchester United Thrived Without Him

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Sir Alex Ferguson was "hit" yesterday by former club captain Roy Keane's claims that he will continue to meddle in Manchester United's affairs.

In his recently released autobiography, Sir Alex addressed Keane's psychology.

"Roy's an intelligent guy. I saw him reading some interesting books.

Tottenham Escape Penalty Decision While Baggies Robbed of Goal: Premier League Referee Decisions, Gameweek 15

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There were significantly more controversial decisions this weekend, compared to last week, so here are my opinions on some of the key decisions.

InTottenham's 2-1 victory at the Stadium of Light, Spurs midfielder Sandro looked to have handled the ball in the box from a corner kick.

In Spite Of Recent Setbacks, Manchester United Are Poised To Finish Top Of Their Champions League Group

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Sometimes you just can't explain sports. Eight years ago, Liverpool ended up finishing second in their Champions League group and fifth in the Premier League table, but ended the season as champions of Europe. The English club edged out Olympiacos in the group stages (on goal difference), then advanced past Bayer Leverkusen, Juventus and Chelsea; all over two legs to reach the Champions League final against AC Milan.

Argentina Away Shirt for FIFA World Cup 2014: Leaked [PHOTO]

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A photograph of Argentina's away shirt for the 2014 FIFA World Cup has been leaked on the Internet.

The design of Argentina's new away shirt features the familiar navy blue and white at the very top of the shirt, but then changes color to feature a combination of different shades of blue in a hooped design.

Swansea City vs Hull City, Premier League Gameweek 15: Open Thread

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Have a drink today every time a pundit or commentator mentions the 2003 match between Swansea and Hull City where the Welsh club was one match away from being relegated to non-league football (and possibly going out of existence altogether). Ten years later, the two clubs face off against each other in the Premier League for first time, with Steve Bruce's high-flying Tigers taking on the Swans at Liberty Stadium.

Could Former Chelsea Washout Nemanja Matić Help Save Manchester United’s Season?

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Nemanja Matić is best remembered in England as being a virtually anonymous Chelsea midfielder who was quickly moved out on loan to Vitesse and then sold to Benfica as part of the deal that brought David Luiz to Stamford Bridge.

But since moving to Portugal, Matić has become remarkably influential in midfield, showing great tactical flexibility and poise on the ball.

Alex Ferguson Has a ‘Massive Ego’, And is Still Trying to Control Manchester United, Says Roy Keane: Daily Soccer Report

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Sir Alex Ferguson has a massive ego and is still trying to control Manchester United, says former United midfielder Roy Keane.

Keano appears in a brand-new ITV4 documentary that is scheduled to air later today in the UK entitledKeane and Vieira: The Best of Enemies. In the documentary, Keane shares several insights including:

"Everything is about control and power.

Germany Away Shirt for World Cup 2014: Leaked [PHOTO]

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A photograph of Germany's away/change for FIFA World Cup 2014 has been leaked on the Internet.

The red and black hooped shirt is designed and manufactured by adidas, and features a distinctive design that's accentuated by the three white adidas stripes that are running down the sleeves.

The shirt features a similar buttoned-up collar design to Manchester United's home shirt this season.

Spain’s Away Shirt For World Cup 2014: Leaked [PHOTOS]

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Images of what appears to be Spain's away shirt for the 2014 FIFA World Cup have been leaked on the Internet.

Designed by adidas, Spain's change shirt for World Cup 2014 will be black with fluorescent yellow trim, and an unique graphic panel design across the chest of the shirt.

The back of the shirt features a fluorescent yellow strip across the shoulder, which is consistent with the design of the other World Cup 2014 shirts from adidas.

England Must Get Its Head Out of the Sand With Relation to Match-Fixing

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British authorities are uncovering more and more evidence of potential match fixing in English football. The latest arrests stem from alleged match-fixing in the Championship, England's second tier league. Just days ago many pundits were dismissing the previous round of arrests around match-fixing to be" isolated" and "simply in the semi-professional ranks.

Manchester United Fan Commits Suicide After Weekend Defeat, Says Report

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A Manchester United supporter in Kenya committed suicide on Saturday after his favorite team lost against Newcastle United, according to a report from Africa.

Local police reported that the United supporterJohn Macharia jumped from the seventh floor of a building, and died instantly.

The police chief told local radio:

"I confirm that we received the news of a young man who could not stand to see his Manchester United team lose, and instead decided he can die for the sake of a team that is miles far away in Europe.

Freezing Weather Conditions and Clashes With College Football Mar MLS Cup Again: Monday Soccer Insider

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MLS Cup 2013 was a great spectacle for the top flight league in the United States. But the below freezing temperatures made the match difficult to play and reinforced why despite constant pressure from fans and FIFA, MLS has chosen to keep its calendar the way it is. Playing in the winter in the northern USA and Canada is nearly impossible.

Combinations (EPL Talk Review Podcast)

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When it comes to combinations the pod look at the best and worst of the last week: Moyes- United. USA-Germany-Ghana-Portugal. Does it get much better for football? Whatever your opinion on the draw and the weekend of football which followed it, there is something for you. Including: mules.

Kris went to London and then headed to Spurs Sunderland whilst Morgan and Kartik both lament a lack of vision within their clubs.

Draw for the FA Cup Third Round Revealed

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Here's the draw for the 3rd round of the 2013-14 FA Cup:

Ipswich Town v Preston North End;
Derby County v Chelsea;
AFC Bournemouth v Fleetwood or Burton Albion;
Birmingham City v Bristol Rovers or Crawley Town;
Grimsby Town v Huddersfield Town;
Everton v QPR;
Brighton & Hove Albion v Reading;
Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur;
Sunderland v Carlisle Utd;
Bolton Wanderers v Blackpool;
Blackburn Rovers v Manchester City;
Norwich City v Fulham;
Aston Villa v Sheffield Utd;
Macclesfield Town v Sheffield Wednesday;
Charlton Ath v Wrexham or Oxford Utd;
Manchester Utd v Swansea City;
Port Vale v Plymouth Argyle;
Newcastle Utd v Cardiff City;
Rochdale v Leeds Utd;
Wigan Ath v MK Dons;
Doncaster R v Stevenage;
Stoke City v Leicester City;
Southampton v Burnley;
Middlesbrough v Hull City;
West Brom v Crystal Palace;
Kidderminster H v Peterborough;
Nottingham Forest v West Ham;
Bristol C v Watford;
Southend U v Millwall;
Barnsley v Hartlepool U or CoventryC;
Yeovil Town v Leyton Orient;
Liverpool v Oldham A or Mansfield T;

Matches will be played over the weekend of 4 and 5 January 2014.

Will Manchester United’s Current Woes Force the Glazer’s Hand?

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Much of the frustration and analysis of casual observers regarding Manchester United's dip in form this season has been around new manager David Moyes. But the analysis has failed to recognize the slip in competitive position in the transfer market inflicted by the club's American owners.

The Red Devils commercial revenues worldwide are roughly similar to Barcelona or Bayern Munich, but both of those clubs have twice or three times the spending power of United currently.

Premier League Sunday, Gameweek 15: Open Thread

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After yesterday's shocking results with Manchester United and Chelsea losing, while Crystal Palace won, the stage is set for today's two matches — both of which will have consequences on the top and bottom of the table.

After Palace's win yesterday versus Cardiff, Tony Pulis's side leapfrogged Fulham.

The Transition Period Was Never Going To Be Easy For Manchester United

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Transition periods are a part of everything: life, relationships, work, etc. Sometimes they can go smoothly, but more often than not they can be tricky. Anyone who has been through a difficult transition period will tell you the best way to navigate through it is to be patient, let go of the past, deal with the present, and move forward.

Evaluating the Strength of Each of the 2014 FIFA World Cup Groups

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It should come as little surprise that the World Cup groups are unbalanced. As I mentioned in a previous article, the lack of balance in place of geographical parity has led to groups that will either excite or bore depending on the country you most want to watch. What follows is a quick calculation to illustrate the lack of group parity, to evaluate group strength and to determine the true Group(s) of Death, plus to provide some insight on what to expect next summer.

Portugal, Not Germany, Will Be Greater Threat to United States at World Cup

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The United States have been drawn into a "Group of Death" in the 2014 World Cup. The storylines are plentiful. The USA faces Ghana yet again, this time in its opening match of Group G. The previous two World Cups for the United States have ended after losses to the Ghanaians.

In 2002, the USA under Bruce Arena stunned the world with an opening group game victory over the heavily favored Portuguese.

Sporting Kansas City vs Real Salt Lake: 2013 MLS Cup

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The anticipation and excitement among Kansas City and Real Salt Lake fans is building, to find out who will eventually become the 2013 champion of MLS today in front of a sold-out crowd in Kansas City.

Weather will be a factor at Sporting Park today where the temperatures are currently 14F, and may drop later.

Guide to All 32 FIFA World Cup 2014 Teams: Key Players, Predicted Line-Ups & More

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The draw and schedule for the 2014 FIFA World Cup has been set in stone, but how much do you know of the 32 teams that will be playing in the tournament?

World Soccer Talk has you covered with previews of every team — featuring predicted line-ups, key players, honors won and much more to give you the insight you need to know your competition!

Manchester United vs Newcastle United, Saturday, Gameweek 15: Open Thread

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Manchester United will be desperate to bounce back with a convincing win today after losing 1-0 to Everton at Old Trafford just days ago.

On top of that there's the interesting storyline that Robin van Persie has reportedly made a transfer request.

Starting line-ups:

Man United:De Gea; Rafael, Evans, Vidic, Evra; Nani, Jones, Cleverley, Januzaj; Hernandez, van Persie.

Commentators for NBC’s Premier League Matches This Weekend: Gameweek 15

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The commentators have been announced for this weekend's Premier League matches on US television. Drumroll please.

Saturday, December 7:

Manchester United vs Newcastle United, 7:45am, NBC Sports Network and mun2; Steve Banyard & Jim Beglin
Southampton vs Manchester City, 10am, NBCSN and mun2; Gary Weaver & Tony Gale
Crystal Palace vs Cardiff, 10am,Premier League Extra Time; Gary Taphouse & Alan Curbishley
Liverpool vs West Ham, 10am,Premier League Extra Time; Joe Speight & Neil Mellor
Stoke City vs Chelsea, 10am,Premier League Extra Time; Ian Crocker & Trevor Francis
West Brom vs Norwich, 10am,Premier League Extra Time; Tony Jones & Dean Sturridge
Sunderland vs Tottenham Hotspur, 12:30pm,Premier League Extra Time; Kevin Keatings & David Pleat

Sunday, December 8:

Fulham vs Aston Villa, 8:30am, NBC Sports Network; Jon Champion & Dean Sturridge
Arsenal vs Everton, 11am, NBC Sports Network; Peter Drury & Stewart Robson

What are your thoughts on the selection of commentators this weekend?

Book Your Travel Plans for World Cup 2014 With All-In-One Exclusive Packages

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The draw for the 2014 FIFA World Cup has been completed, and it's time to book your trip if you want to try to watch your country play in Brazil this summer.

If you are serious about traveling to Brazil next summer to support your country's soccer team, or you want to just take in a variety of World Cup matches, now is the time to make your dreams come true — before the draw.

US World Cup Game Against Portugal to be Televised Live On ABC On Sunday, June 22

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USA's game against Portugal on Sunday, June 22 will be televised live on ABC, according toESPN Senior Vice President and Executive ProducerJed Drake. The ESPN executive was speaking via phone from Brazil to the US soccer media in Bristol, CT.

Drake also revealed that it's not out of the realm of possibility that the TV times could change for the USA vs Ghana and USA vs Germany games.

England Has What It Takes To Emerge From Italy, Uruguay and Costa Rica Group

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England manager Roy Hodgson didn't want to go to Manaus, but he will in the first group game against Italy (Saturday, June 14, 9pm ET). The Azzurri under Cesare Prandelli have to be considered a strong contender to advance deep into this World Cup. Uruguay's uneven qualifying campaign notwithstanding, getting by them will be difficult for England.

2014 World Cup Draw: Spain and Netherlands in 2010 final repeat

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The draw is done and dusted and it seems to have done no harm to 2014 World Cup betting odds, at least where the favourites are concerned.

Here are the final group stage line-ups for the Brazil 2014 World Cup:

GROUP A: BRAZIL, CROATIA, MEXICO, CAMEROON

GROUP B: SPAIN, HOLLAND, CHILE, AUSTRAILIA

GROUP C: COLOMBIA, GREECE, IVORY COAST, JAPAN

GROUP D: URUGUAY, COSTA RICA, ENGLAND, ITALY

GROUP E: SWITZERLAND, ECUADOR, FRANCE, HONDURAS

GROUP F: ARGENTINA, BOSNIA HERZEGOVINA, IRAN, NIGERIA

GROUP G: GERMANY, PORTUGAL, GHANA, USA

GROUP H: BELGIUM, ALGERIA, RUSSIA, KOREA REPUBLIC

In what was a superbly lavish ceremony in the Costa do Sauipe resort of Bahia, the fate of the 32 teams was decided; with a number of super early ties now to look forward to.

World Cup 2014 TV Schedule For June 12-26: Find Out When Your Team Plays

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Now that the draw has been made for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, we finally know what teams will be playing on the different dates for the first round of the competition, with plenty of mouthwatering matches scheduled. Plus we know what the kick-off times are for each match.

For viewers in the United States, we'll find out in the near future which games will be on ABC, ESPN and ESPN2.

FOX Emerges As Likely Winner of UEFA Champions League US Media Rights for 2015-18, Says Source

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FOX Sports has emerged as the likely winner of the US media rights to the 2015-18 UEFA Champions League, according to a report Sports Business Daily.

Sources have revealed to SBJ that FOX will be revealed as the winner as early as today, beating NBC Sports, beIN SPORT and Univision for the rights.

FIFA World Cup 2014 Draw: Open Thread

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For viewers in the United States, the World Cup Draw coverage begins at 11am ET on ESPN3.com and 11:30am ET on ESPN2 and WatchESPN.com

I'm joined alongside Kartik Krishnaiyer and World Soccer Talk videographer Joshua Tomlinson at ESPN headquarters in Bristol, CT. It's a cold, wet rainy day here, but there's a buzz around the building today with the anticipation building for the World Cup draw.

RIP Nelson Mandela, A Great Ambassador for World Soccer

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Yesterday, the World Soccer Talk team was assembled in Bristol CT as guests of ESPN. During pre-production for Thursday's ESPN FC show previewing the World Cup Draw, an ESPN staffer shouted "Nelson Mandela died." Suddenly everyone on the set led by host Dan Thomas began reminiscing about Mandela's life and legacy.

Could FIFA Be Brazil’s Secret World Cup Weapon?

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Brazil are the record World Cup winners, they're playing at home and they're the bookmakers' favorites. Never mind Nostradamus, even Mystic Sally can probably envisage Thiago Silva hoisting aloft the Jules Rimet trophy next July. Despite lacking the panache of Brazilian sides of yesteryear, Luis Felipe Scolari's men have enough quality, know-how and functionality to go all the way next summer.

World Cup Draw Is Doomsday Scenario For The United States

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Walking out of the 2006 World Cup Draw in Germany, Bruce Arena knew that the United States' tournament was over before it even started.

Despite boasting a strong side that would climb into the top ten of the FIFA World Rankings, Arena knew that the draw had spit out an impossible task for the USA.

Where to Find the World Cup Draw Live On US Television and Internet

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The anticipation is building for Friday's World Cup Draw, live from Brazil, where the world will find out who will play who in the ultimate soccer tournament on the globe.

The draw for the 2014 FIFA World Cup will be shown live on US television and Internet on Friday, December 6.

Here are the details of where you can find it:

English-language: ESPN will begin its broadcast of the World Cup Draw on 11:30am ET and will conclude at 1:30pm ET.

Manchester United Fans Have Broken Sir Alex Ferguson’s Plea to Stand By Their New Manager

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Moyes Out?...Really?...So soon?

On May 122013, shortly after Manchester United beat Swansea City 2-1 at Old Trafford, outgoing manager Sir Alex Ferguson addressed his home supporters and thanked them for sharing the countless memories with him at the club. United's legendary leader reminded the fans that "all the last second goals, the comebacks, and the defeats, are all part of this great football club of ours.

Jozy Altidore Scores His First Premier League Goal For Sunderland. Finally. [GIF]

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Sunderland and US international striker Jozy Altidore finally scored his first Premier League goal for Sunderland today.

Altidore scored for the Black Cats in the first half of the match against Chelsea at the Stadium of Light. Altidore, with his back to goal, did well to hold up the ball, and then twist and turn to get his shot on goal against Petr Cech and into the back of the net.

Premier League Wednesday, Gameweek 14: Open Thread

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We're set for the busiest day in the 2013/14 Premier League season so far, with nine matches all kicking off. If you live in the United Kingdom, only one of the games is televised (Swansea-Newcastle on BT Sport). For those of you living in the United States, all nine matches are on deck.

Here's the TV/Internet schedule for today's matches:

Wednesday, December 4:

Man United vs Everton, 2:45pm, NBCSN and Mun2
Arsenal vs Hull, 2:45pm, Premier League Extra Time & NBC Sports Live Extra
Stoke vs Cardiff, 2:45pm, Premier League Extra Time& NBC Sports Live Extra
Sunderland vs Chelsea, 2:45pm, Premier League Extra Time& NBC Sports Live Extra
Southampton vs Aston Villa, 2:45pm, Premier League Extra Time& NBC Sports Live Extra
Swansea vs Newcastle, 2:45pm, Premier League Extra Time& NBC Sports Live Extra
Liverpool vs Norwich, 2:45pm, Premier League Extra Time& NBC Sports Live Extra
West Brom vs Man City, 3pm, Premier League Extra Time& NBC Sports Live Extra
Fulham vs Tottenham, 3pm, Premier League Extra Time& NBC Sports Live Extra

Before, during or after today's games, join the conversation in the comments section below.

Patience of Manchester United Fans Is Paying Off For Moyes And Team

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While Manchester United were recently protecting a precious one goal lead against Southampton, manager David Moyes made the most negative change in his short United career thus far. He took off the energetic Wayne Rooney, and replaced him with Chris Smalling. Two minutes later, a defensive lapse in concentration saw Southampton level, and the game ended 1-1.

Paolo Rossi Haunts 1982 Demolition of Brazil In World Cup TV Commercial [VIDEO]

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Paolo Rossi stars in a creative new World Cup TV commercial.

After getting a shave in a barber shop in Brazil, Rossi tries to pay with a credit card. It's only then that the Brazilian barber realizes that it's the Paolo Rossi, and he has flashbacks to that famous game between Italy and Brazil in the 1982 World Cup where one of the greatest Brazilian teams ever were undone by Rossi when he scored a hat trick to win the match 3-2 and send Brazil home.

adidas Releases brazuca Video Featuring Messi, Xavi, Schweinsteiger and Alves [VIDEO]

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Following the launch of the official World Cup ball for FIFA World Cup 2014, adidas has released a video featuring the brazuca ball. The video includes plenty of stars from Argentina, Brazil, and Germany, backed by the brilliant song by The Kinks entitled All Day And All Of The Night.

I particularly love the camera angles the director used in this shoot, especially the ones where we get the perspective from the ball's point of view as if the ball is a living, breathing organism.

Is MLS Heading Toward a Bubble With Plans to Expand to 24 Teams?

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There's been a lot said lately about MLS expansion, but on a recent edition of ESPNFC, hosts Taylor Twellman and Steve Nicol had a fiery exchange that distilled the MLS expansion debate right down to its essence. Lincoln v. Douglas-esque in its gravity, the showdown also evoked Kennedy v. Nixon in its stark visual contrast between Twellman's gleaming visage and Nicol's gray grimace.

Reviewing Key Refereeing Incidents From Premier League Gameweek 13

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In the last couple of weeks, referees have been under a substantial amount of media pressure after Andre Marriner's penalty decision at Stamford Bridge and Wes Brown's red card at Stoke. It was therefore important that the referees had a good weekend, to rebuild some confidence heading into the busy christmas period.

adidas Unveil Official 2014 World Cup Ball Named brazuca [PHOTOS]

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adidas has officially launched the 2014 FIFA World Cup match ball.

The ball, named brazuca, was named back in September 2012 following a public vote in Brazil involving 1 million football fans; the name "brazuca" is an informal local term which means "Brazilian", or to describe the Brazilian way of life.

4 Revealing Observations From the World Cup 2014 Pots Selection

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Now that the World Cup pots have been confirmed, countries around the globe will be tuned in Friday for the official draw. Managers will now have to quell nerves and focus on preparing their staffs for the task of scouting their future opponents. With a six month preparation window, final roster tweaks and lots of prayers for the health of players will fill the minds of the likes of Vicente Del Bosque, Roy Hodgson and Jürgen Klinsmann.

Crystal Palace vs West Ham United, Premier League Gameweek 14: Open Thread

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Crystal Palace manager Tony Pulis has indicated that his goal for the Eagles is to get two wins between now and the end of the year. Today's match against West Ham United at Selhurst Park is as good a chance as any to pick up three valuable points.

Here are the starting line-ups:

Crystal Palace:Speroni, Ward, Gabbidon, Delaney, Moxey, Jedinak, Dikgacoi, Bannan, Puncheon, Chamakh, Jerome

Subs:Price, Mariappa, O'Keefe, Williams, Kebe, Gayle, Philiips

West Ham:Jaaskelainen, O'Brien, Collins, Tomkins, Rat, Noble, Nolan, Morrison, Downing, Diame, C.

ESPN Announces First Five Analysts For Its World Cup 2014 Coverage

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ESPN has announced the first five analysts for its coverage of the 2014 World Cup. ESPN has selected Michael Ballack, Steve McManaman, Alexi Lalas, Taylor Twellman and Santiago Solari.

Ballack, Lalas, McManaman and Solari will appear on pre-match, halftime and post-match shows, SportsCenter, ESPN FC and FIFA World Cup-themed news and information programs.

Commentators for NBC’s Premier League Matches This Week: Gameweek 14

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Here's the line-up of commentators for gameweek 14 of Premier League matches on US television across the NBC Sports Group networks this week:

Tuesday, December 3:

Crystal Palace vs West Ham, 3pm, NBCSN; Jon Champion & Mark Bright

Wednesday, December 4:

Man United vs Everton, 2:45pm, NBCSN and Mun2; Arlo White & Lee Dixon
Arsenal vs Hull, 2:45pm, Premier League Extra Time; Rob Hawthorne & Tony Gale
Stoke vs Cardiff, 2:45pm, Premier League Extra Time; Daniel Mann & Dean Sturridge
Sunderland vs Chelsea, 2:45pm, Premier League Extra Time; Bill Leslie & Alan Curbishley
Southampton vs Aston Villa, 2:45pm, Premier League Extra Time; Tony Jones & Ray Houghton
Swansea vs Newcastle, 2:45pm, Premier League Extra Time; Gary Taphouse & Barry Horne
Liverpool vs Norwich, 2:45pm, Premier League Extra Time; Gary Weaver & Garry Birtles
West Brom vs Man City, 3pm, Premier League Extra Time; Peter Drury & Gary O'Reilly
Fulham vs Tottenham, 3pm, Premier League Extra Time; Ian Crocker & Trevor Francis

Bookmark thePremier League TV scheduleguide for upcoming TV and Internet times.

Highs and Lows From This Past Weekend In World Soccer

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Let me start on a personal note. I have received intense criticism from some in the local southeast Florida community about my column written last week about a possible disaster scenario for local soccer if David Beckham mishandles his MLS team launch. I certainly wish the team and those supporting the team the best of luck, but many of the cheerleaders for the effort haven't been in the trenches locally and are simply painting a rosy picture.

Pots Confirmed For FIFA World Cup Draw

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FIFA today confirmed the pots for Friday's World Cup Draw. The soccer organizing committee decided to put all nine European teams as unseeded countries (rather than ranked according to their FIFA ranking) into Pot 4, with one Pot 4 team will be drawn into Pot 2.

The United States is placed in Pot 3.

Alvaro Morata ‘Agrees Six-Month Loan Move’ to Arsenal From Real Madrid: Daily Soccer Report

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Spanish media is reporting that Arsenal have agreed a deal with Real Madrid to bring highly-rated 21-year-old striker Alvaro Morata to the Emirates Stadium in a six-month loan deal.

As with any reports coming out of Spain, it's always difficult to know whether it's just tabloid rumors, or if there is truth to the story.

The Ultimate Holiday Gift Guide For Every Soccer Fan

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The holidays are our favorite time of the year with plenty of soccer matches on television, and lots of opportunities to give and receive soccer gifts to our loved ones.

To make the search easier for remarkable soccer presents, we've compiled a comprehensive Holiday Gift Guide featuring everything from soccer books and shirts to more unique ideas for soccer fans of all ages.

Rebecca Lowe to Host 2014 Winter Olympics On NBC Sports; What Does It Mean For EPL Fans?

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NBC Sports Premier League host Rebecca Lowe has been named as host of the 2014 Winter Olympic Games that will be held in Russia early next year, according to a report by Richard Deitsch of Sports Illustrated.

Since August, Lowe has hit the ground running hosting NBC's Premier League coverage, which has generated record high ratings on NBC.

Bloody Weekend for Championship Managers in the North Ends in Three Sackings

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This past weekend's Championship action saw the end of the line for three managers at clubs with varying expectations.

Barnsley were humiliated at home by fellow strugglers Birmingham City on Saturday leaving the Yorkshire club six points adrift from safety and rooted to the bottom of the table this early in the season.

Who Will Win the US Media Rights to UEFA Champions League For 2015-2018?

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The deadline to submit bids and final presentations is tomorrow for US media rights to the next round of UEFA Champions League coverage, which will span the 2015-16 to 2017-18 seasons.

Current rights holder FOX Sports is expected to try to hold on to the rights, but faces fierce competition from a couple of new faces in bidding for the prestigious UEFA Champions League rights.

West Ham’s Sam Allardyce Decries Andre Villas-Boas’s “Immaturity”

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West Ham Manager Sam Allardyce has told talkSport that he felt Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas acted "immaturely" in his post match commentstoward reporter Neil Ashton of The Daily Mailnewspaper.

Allardyce said:

"You have to use the criticism as a motivational drive to show these people that they are wrong.

Liverpool Striker Luis Suarez Gives Rare Interview in English [VIDEO]

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Luis Suarez rarely, if ever, gives interviews in English. Watch this interview given in English with in-house LFC channel Liverpool TV on the occasion of being awarded the Reds Player of the Month for November.

This is the second month in a row where Suarez has won the Player of the Month award at Liverpool.

The Management (EPL Talk Review Podcast)

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A smaller pod this week but even more Premier League to cram in there. Mid-week games mean that things pile up for teams and from now on games come thick and fast for these sides. Christmas isn't a let-up either.

Andre goes toe to toe with the board and Jose goes in on Romelu. The league is a harsh place to be and feel right now.

Tottenham Manager Andre Villas-Boas Lashes Out at Reporter During Press Conference [VIDEO]

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Andre Villas Boas went crazy lashed out during today's press conference after Spurs 2-2 draw with Manchester United. Watch as he singles out a reporter (Neil Ashton of the Daily Mail, as well as Martin Samuel of the same paper) for criticism at about the two minute mark of this video. Whether Ashton's reports some of which have seemingly been over the top earned him this critique from AVB is up for debate.

Arsenal May Play Friendly in Boston During Summer 2014, Says Report

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Arsenal are finalizing a friendly to be played in the United States for Summer 2014, according to a report by Arsenal Insider. Boston has been identified as the city where Arsenal would like to play, which will represent the first time in 25 years that Arsenal FC have set foot on US soil.

The source revealed that:

"The club are fully aware that commercially America has been largely untapped and that taking the brand to the US is critical to the club's ongoing development.

Fulham Boss Rene Meulensteen Gives First Interview After Taking Over At Craven Cottage [VIDEO]

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New Fulham boss Rene Meulensteen spoke to Sky Sports late Sunday about his appointment and his surprise at the sacking of Martin Jol. Meulensteen lasted only 17 days earlier this year at Anzhi after replacing Guus Hidinnk. In that role, the massive cuts in spending by the Russian club prompted the departure of the Dutchman.

Cyber Monday Sale: Get 25% Off Your Soccer Merchandise Orders at World Soccer Shop: Promo Code

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For this Cyber Monday only, you can save 25% on all soccer merchandise ordered via the World Soccer Talk Shop.

It's your opportunity to order soccer shirts, cleats, scarves, sweaters or anything you like for you or your loved ones.

With the upcoming holidays, it's a perfect time to place your orders and save.

La Liga Roundup, Gameweek 15: Barca Shock Defeat Narrows Title Race

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Barcelona fell to their first Primera defeat of the season at Athletic Bilbao allowing Atletico Madrid, who won at Elche, to draw level on points with the leaders. Gareth Bale hit a hat-trick as Real Madrid beat Valladolid convincingly to trail the top two by just three points.

Barcelona had the lion's share of possession at San Mames, but could must barely a chance in front of goal as Athletic Bilbao deservedly inflicted a first defeat in La Liga on the Catalans.

Tom Cleverley: Manchester United’s Midfield Enigma

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Manchester United supporters are at a disadvantage. They don't get to see Tom Cleverley in training every day. Apparently Cleverley is one hell of a player on the training ground because Red Devils managers keep selecting the midfielder into United's starting eleven; one of those managers being the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson.

Watch Nike’s Brazil World Cup 2014 Video: Is This The Best World Cup TV Ad Yet? [VIDEO]

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Is this the best World Cup 2014 video thus far?

A few weeks ago, adidas launched their World Cup 2014 campaign video with its Samba feel featuring the sights and sounds of Brazil. Now Nike today has released a brand-new video entitled "Dare To Be Brazilian," which features familiar cameos from David Luiz, Neymar, Paulinho, Thiago, Bernard and others.

Fulham Sack Martin Jol and Replace Dutchman With Rene Meulensteen

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Fulham have announced that Martin Jol has been sacked as manager.

The departure of Jol from Craven Cottage was announced this morning after the Cottagers lost 3-0 to West Ham United yesterday, which was Fulham's sixth defeat in a row that sees the club sitting in the bottom three.

Fulham owner Shahid Khan has promoted Rene Meulensteen to the role as first team coach/manager.

Liverpool Dealt Blow as Daniel Sturridge Out 6-8 Weeks With Ankle Injury

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Liverpool took a big hit on Sunday when manager Brendan Rodgers confirmed that forward Daniel Sturridge will miss six to eight weeks with an ankle injury.

Sturridge suffered a ligament strain in his left ankle while training on Friday for today's match against Hull City. The Liverpool striker suffered a similar injury to his right ankle in May while playing for England and that injury left him sidelined for three months.

Fulham’s Martin Jol Admits He Could Be Sacked After West Ham Defeat: Nightly Soccer Report

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Distress signals are being sounded around west London today after Fulham suffered another defeat, their sixth in a row, after losing 3-0 to West Ham at Upton Park. It's no surprise that Fulham manager Martin Jol is at risk of being fired if the results continue this way, especially with the Cottagers in the bottom three, and facing upcoming matches against Tottenham, Aston Villa and Everton.

Premier League Sunday, Gameweek 13: Open Thread

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We've got four matches today in the Premier League involving six sides in the top 8. A win for any of those 6 teams will certainly do them a huge favor — Liverpool and Chelsea can both narrow the gap behind Arsenal to 4 points. Manchester United could leapfrog into fifth place. With a win today, Manchester City could move into second.