FIFA

World Cup

UEFA president: U.S. travel ban would harm potential World Cup bid

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The United States remains a candidate to host the 2026 World Cup but, according to a top FIFA official, a recent political development could have a negative impact on the country's chances of securing the right to house the world's biggest tournament.

UEFA presidentAleksander Ceferin says that U.

Next Most Logical Rules Change for MLS

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USMNT's Graham Zusi, at World Cup 2014
The soccer world seems a little shaken up after last week's declaration by FIFA's Marco Van Basten, head of the Technical Development department, who said he is overseeing possible rules changes for offsides, amount of playing time, substitutions, how fouls are handled and deciding tie games.

Expanding soccer

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Will we be seeing a bigger Gold Cup in light of the World Cup expansion? It's likely with world soccer in growth mode.

World Cup will suffer for FIFA’s misguided expansion

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Photo credit: AFP.

When the small Caribbean country of Trinidad and Tobago qualified for its first World Cup in November of 2005, the nation's Prime Minister Patrick Manning declared a national holiday.

That same year, when the African country of Cote d'Ivoire qualified for its first finals, the country's Civil War ground to a halt as its President agreed to open peace talks.

Back from travels

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Now that we are back from the lady's first tour of America (and have had a few days to just sleep), I am back on patrol here. I'll drop a few stray opinions on recent soccer happenings now and then kick off a short series of non-soccer top five lists related to food and activities enjoyed during our cross-country jaunt (the already promised L.

FIFA makes World Cup expansion official

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The FIFA Council voted on Tuesday to expand the World Cup from 32 to 48 teams starting with the 2026 tournament.

The World Cup expansion plot thickens

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It's not just the World Cup that might be changing for 2026 with reports linking FIFA with a move to merge CONCACAF and CONMEBOL qualifying.

News Update

Year one of Infantino’s FIFA

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Gianni Infantino has a year in as FIFA president with the organization still facing criticism for not doing enough to enact reforms.

Up and down for the best coach in the world

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FIFA's best coach in the world award winner Claudio Ranieri is now facing public speculation that his job might be in danger in the soccer news.

Another return for the NY Cosmos

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The NY Cosmos are back with a new owner and the NASL moves on with an interim commissioner in the soccer news.

FIFA sticks with Russia for the 2018 World Cup

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FIFA president Gianni Infantino confirms that world soccer's governing body has no plans to reconsider the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

AFP

Smog may force FIFA U-17 World Cup out of Delhi

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New Delhi (AFP) – FIFA could pull Under-17 World Cup matches out of New Delhi because of concerns over air quality in the world’s most polluted capital city, the tournament director said.

Javier Ceppi said that air quality in Delhi was a “serious concern”, particularly after the Hindu Diwali festival which this year falls in October - the month the tournament will be held.

Smog may force U-17 football World Cup out of Delhi

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New Delhi (AFP) – FIFA could pull Under-17 World Cup matches out of New Delhi because of concerns over air quality in the world’s most polluted capital city, the tournament director said.

Javier Ceppi said that air quality in Delhi was a “serious concern”, particularly after the Diwali festival which this year falls in October - the month the tournament will be held.

FIFA boss not worried about hooligans at Russia World Cup

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Doha (AFP) – FIFA president Gianni Infantino said Thursday he did not fear hooligan troubles at the World Cup in Russia next year despite reported threats against foreign fans.

“I am not concerned about trouble in 2018, I have full confidence in the Russian authorities,” Infantino told AFP and a small group of reporters on the sidelines of a meeting in Doha.

Wales appeal FIFA poppy mosaic fine

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London (AFP) – The Football Association of Wales will appeal against the fine imposed by FIFA over the displaying of commemorative symbols during a Wales game, the organisation announced on Friday.

The FAW was fined 20,000 Swiss francs ($19,960, 18,750 euros) after a wreath and poppy mosaic were displayed in memory of Britain’s war dead during a World Cup qualifier against Serbia in Cardiff last November.

Kremlin to host World Cup finals draw

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Moscow (AFP) The draw for the 2018 World Cup finals hosted by Russia will take place in the Kremlin on December 1, the country's Football Union (RFU) chief Vitaly Mutko said Monday.

Mutko, Russia's deputy prime minister, said that FIFA had approved the plan, which world football's ruling body later confirmed.

Kremlin to host World Cup finals draw

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Moscow (AFP) The draw for the 2018 World Cup finals hosted by Russia will take place in the Kremlin on December 1, the country's Football Union (RFU) chief Vitaly Mutko said Monday.

Mutko, Russia's deputy prime minister, said that FIFA had approved the plan, which world football's ruling body later confirmed.

Matip given FIFA clearance to return for Liverpool

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London (AFP) Liverpool defender Joel Matip has been cleared to return to action with the Premier League club after FIFA resolved the Cameroon international's status on Friday.

Matip recently claimed he had retired from international football and did not want to play for Cameroon despite their attempts to call him up for the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations.

Matip given FIFA clearance to return for Liverpool

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London (AFP) Liverpool defender Joel Matip has been cleared to return to action with the Premier League club after FIFA resolved the Cameroon international's status on Friday.

Matip recently claimed he had retired from international football and did not want to play for Cameroon despite their attempts to call him up for the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations.

FIFA’s van Basten reveals radical vision

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Berlin (AFP) Time penalties instead of yellow cards, no off-side rule and more substitutions: legendary ex-striker Marco van Basten, FIFA's technical director, has a radical vision of football's future.

"We must keep looking for ways to improve the game, to make it more honest, more dynamic, more interesting, so that what we offer is attractive enough," the 52-year-old Dutchman told German magazine Sport Bild.

FIFA’s van Basten reveals radical vision

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Berlin (AFP) Time penalties instead of yellow cards, no off-side rule and more substitutions: legendary ex-striker Marco van Basten, FIFA's technical director, has a radical vision of football's future.

"We must keep looking for ways to improve the game, to make it more honest, more dynamic, more interesting, so that what we offer is attractive enough," the 52-year-old Dutchman told German magazine Sport Bild.

FIFA warn Liverpool over Matip selection

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Zurich (AFP) FIFA warned Liverpool on Monday they cannot play Joel Matip unless Africa Cup of Nations participants Cameroon give the Premier League title-chasers permission.

The key central defender missed Liverpool's 1-1 draw with Manchester United on Sunday amid a disagreement over his international status and he could be unavailable for the next month.

FIFA warn Liverpool over Matip selection

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Zurich (AFP) FIFA warned Liverpool on Monday they cannot play Joel Matip unless Africa Cup of Nations participants Cameroon give the Premier League title-chasers permission.

The key central defender missed Liverpool's 1-1 draw with Manchester United on Sunday amid a disagreement over his international status and he could be unavailable for the next month.

Matip out for Liverpool amid Cameroon confusion

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Manchester (United Kingdom) (AFP) Joel Matip missed Liverpool's Premier League game at Manchester United on Sunday because his club are still awaiting clearance from FIFA following his retirement from international football with Cameroon.

Matip, 25, announced he no longer wished to be considered for selection by Cameroon last year and was not named in their Africa Cup of Nations squad.

Expanded World Cup ‘more competitive’ says Portugal coach

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Lisbon (AFP) FIFA's expansion of the World Cup to 48 teams from 2026 will make football's showpiece tournament "more competitive", Portugal coach Fernando Santos said Thursday.

"We must avoid being too dramatic," Santos said. "If this expansion meant an increase in the number of games (played during the tournament) things would be more complicated, but as it's not the case, I'm clearly in favour of it.

A 48-team World Cup, but who can host it?

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Paris (AFP) FIFA's decision to expand the World Cup to 48 teams starting with the 2026 tournament prompted one major question: who can host the global showpiece in its revamped format?

North America is the favourite and in pole position with other former candidates relegated to outsiders.

Argentina, France take FIFA ranking honours

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Zurich (AFP) Lionel Messi's beaten Copa America finalists Argentina end the year top of FIFA's world rankings while France, defeated in the Euro 2016 final, were named "mover of the year".

Argentina finish 2016 out in front of arch rivals Brazil to inherit the 'team of the year' title from Belgium, displaced from the FIFA summit by the Edgardo Bauza-coached Albiceleste in April.

CONCACAF

UEFA pushes for rank in the expanded World Cup

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UEFA is already positioning itself for spots in the expanded World Cup, looking ahead to 2026 in a way that is only good for Europe.

CONCACAF without the Caribbean?

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A report has the Caribbean teams considering a future apart from CONCACAF and USMNT coach Bruce Arena charms the media in the soccer news.

Marco Van Basten

Is the van Basten plan already over?

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FIFA technical director Marco van Basten's plan for rule changes to soccer wasn't met with a lot of support, but does that make it a bad idea?

11 Freunde: German Magazine Trial Marco Van Basten’s Pioneering ‘Football Without Offside’ Idea (Video)

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As you no doubt recall, Marco van Basten recently used his standing as FIFA's technical consultant to propose a raft of new rule changes to help spruce the beautiful game up a bit.

As well as orange cards and 'American' penalty shoot-outs, the legendary Dutch striker suggested that the offside rule be scrapped entirely to help facilitate more goalmouth action.

No Offside, American Penalties And Orange Cards – FIFA Technical Director Marco Van Basten Has Some Interesting Plans To Improve Football

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In his role as FIFA technical director, Marco van Basten has cobbled together a list of tweaksthat he believes will help preserve football as the world's number one sport of choice.

Sadly, it appears that Van Basten has been at the strong cheese before bed-time, as some of his suggestions are bordering on the crackpot.

NASL 'Shootouts' Considered for World Cup 2026 Is a Sign of Changing Times

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ESPN's report on FIFA considering a change to how soccer may settle tie games for World Cup 2026 is a bit of a game-changer. The rules change would attempt to manage the additional groupings formed from the increase of 16 more countries competing.

The Rest

Copa Verde: Brazilian Cup Will Allow Referees To Show Green Cards For Acts Of Fair Play

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Photo: @CBF_Futebol/Twitter

As you may recall, a new scheme to reward players for admirable sporting conduct was trialled in Italy's Serie B last year, which ultimately saw Vicenza strikerCristian Galano become football's first official recipient of the'green card'.

As approvedby FIFA, referees can administer the green card for 12 clearly defined "exemplaryacts of virtue", including (but not limited to) admittingto simulation and unseen handballs/fouls, preventing teammates from harassing officials, and generally owning up when incorrect decisions are given.

FIFA 17 Video Game Challenges Human Soccer for Audience Share

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Last night, while channel flipping during the primetime hours, I came across the FIFA 17 Ultimate Team Championship Series regional final on ESPN2. I found out the promotion with EA Sports has 1.

USMNT falls one spot in latest FIFA rankings

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Photo by Christopher Hanewinckel/USA Today Sports

The U.S. Men's National Team didn't allow a goal in two recentfriendlies, but it wasn't enough to prevent a slight drop in the latest FIFA rankings

On the heels ofa draw with Serbia and win over Jamaica, the U.S. fell one spot to 29th in the latest FIFA rankings.

Bayer Leverkusen: Set-Piece Wizard Hakan Calhanoglu Banned For Four Months Over Contract Breach

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Bayer Leverkusen are going to have to do without the services of Hakan Calhanoglu for the rest of the season after the midfielder was handed a four-month ban for breaching his contract.

Specifically, Calhanoglu has beenpunished for breaching a contract he signed with Turkish side Trabzonspor when he was just 17-years old.

Thursday Kickoff: Wenger, Mexico, Subotic and more

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One of the game's top managers is hoping to earn a lenient punishment while Mexico is set to face FIFA on Thursday.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger accepted his misconduct charge from the English FA but will request a personal meeting in an effort to earn a more lenient punishment for shoving a fourth official.

Liverpool expecting Joel Matip answer before Swansea game

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Jürgen Klopp on Joel Matip: "I don't have an update yet. FIFA said today would be kind of D-day."#LIVSWA pic.twitter.com/tgPHOV3tRV...

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FIFA BEST AWARDS | CRISTIANO RONALDO THE BEST 2016

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