good shape

English Premier League

All Arsenal’s international players text Arsene Wenger to say they are OK

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Arsene Wenger's mobile phone was busy last night and this morning as Arsenal's international players text their boss to report that they had come through their respective matches unscathed. The Frenchman would have anxiously awaiting news on his players' fitness with just days to go until the start of the new Premier League season.

Ferguson’s retirement caps a crazy season on the Premier League managerial merry-go-round

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It is almost impossible to believe that come June 1, Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers will be the fifth longest serving manager currently working in the Premier League! Rodgers will have been in the Anfield hot seat for one year but given the nature of the modern Premier League, he has overtaken 15 rivals in the [.

Backpage roundup: Diaby compares himself to Yaya Toure, Wilshere nearing full fitness, Wenger’s advice for Liverpool owners and more

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Diaby: I Am More Toure than Song

Abou Diaby has said now that his injury troubles are finally over, he wants to emulate Manchester City's box-to-box midfielder Yaya Toure.

The oft-injured Frenchman started Arsenal's Premier League clash with Liverpool on Sunday and his marauding performance earned him the man of the match award.

Arsenal manager admits midfielder worry

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Arsene Wenger admits that Abou Diaby long-term absence from Arsenal's midfield left him concerned about the player's ability to return to full fitness.

Diaby, 26, made only five appearances across all competitions for the Gunners in an injury-plagued campaign last season but has made a strong comeback this season.

Confident Di Matteo Targets Away Goal For Chelsea Against Benfica

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Chelsea's coach, Roberto Di Matteo, remain confident about his side's quality but he doesn't set too ambitious target on their Champions League tie against home team Benfica on Tuesday, stating that picking up an away goal is the main goal.

Aside from performing well. Despite not necessarily targeting a win , the Italian coach does remind his player that they must not be hasty at the back and avoid conceding goals just like against Napoli as lighting doesn't always struck twice.

ESPN3

Training at the National Stadium

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The U.S. had its pre-match training today at the Tokyo National Stadium, which will host both semifinal matches, and it certainly met with their approval. The 48,000-seat venue was built for the 1964 Summer Olympics and is in remarkably good shape for such an old venue.

The field is in fantastic condition and big crowds are expected for both matches with the bigger of course filing in to watch the Japan-Germany game at 7:30 p.

Training at Komaba Stadium

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Julie Johnston and Becca Wann try to set their heading record

FIFA has given the USA its one pre-game in-venue training two days before the game a few times in this tournament and it was the same here in Saitama so the Americans did a very light session that was more regeneration than soccer on a beautiful and warm night in this city that sits just northwest of Tokyo.

mls team

The A-Team and Friends make the scoreline a safer place

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To say defense is important to this team is like saying rain is important to make plants grow. As a mostly counterattacking team, their offense starts with solid defensive skills. And they are darn good at stopping the opposing offense. They are so good, they haven't let an MLS team score more then two goals against them the entire year.

Rocky Start

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I miss Nathan's post-game summaries. Not my strong suit. But I did want to get something up before tonight's game.

Last week in Toronto was a shaky start. Obviously giving up two goals in 20 minutes is bad news. But for a team that really just came together it doesn't worry me. Magee was once again our hero and Buddle turned on the tap again, so we come out of there in good shape.

Euro 2012

Barcelona Look To Give Puyol A Contract Extension

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Barcelona are ready to offer captain Carles Puyol an extension to his contract as he made his return to training after being out for two months with an injury.

Spanish daily Sport reports that the club will offer the 34-year-old a new contract as he is in the final year of his current deal.

England v Italy predictions: OTP talks to Graeme Le Saux

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Former England left-back Graeme Le Saux might be best remembered for giving Blackburn teammate David Batty a swift left hook to the chops and being invited to penetrate Robbie Fowler mid-match, but he's also renowned as being somewhat of an intellectual. Speaking exclusively to OTP, he came up with a few articulate thoughts on England's [.

Theo shines for England + Saturday round-up

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Morning to you, a very quick Saturday round-up for you.

The main Arsenal focus at Euro 2012 this morning is on Theodore P Walcott who came off the bench and made a real impact as England beat Sweden 3-2. It wasn't exactly the highest quality game of football you'll ever see but it was pretty entertaining stuff.

Rio Ferdinand admits his England career is ‘almost certainly finished’

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This article titled "Rio Ferdinand admits his England career is 'almost certainly finished'" was written by Daniel Taylor in Krakow, for The Guardian on Saturday 9th June 2012 08.01 UTC

Rio Ferdinand has admitted his England career is almost certainly finished after the disappointment and controversy of being excluded from Roy Hodgson's England squad for Euro 2012.

German seeking to remove ‘nearly’ label

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Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker is convinced that despite Germany's repeated failure to succeed in the advanced stages of major international competitions over the course of the last decade, the current squad is ready to go the distance.

Mertesacker arrived in the Premier League on the transfer deadline-day last August and despite subsequently missing much of the season's second half through injury, he has returned on the nation stage in recent exhibition fixtures.

Fabregas Expected To Be Fit For Italy Opener

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Barelona's Cesc Fabregas appears to have shaken off his hamstring injury in time to feature in Spain's Euro 2012 Group C opener against Italy on June 10, coach Vicente del Bosque said on Saturday.

"They did some tests yesterday and the doctors saw that he (Fabregas) is in reasonably good shape," Del Bosque told a news conference in Seville previewing Spain's final warm-up match against China on Sunday.

How England’s Midfield Should Line Up At The Euros

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You would have to say that Roy Hodgson has a strong midfield line-up to choose from, for his England Euro 2012 squad in Poland and Ukraine, and he will be hard-pushed to select his first midfielders for the game with Sweden.

Aside from Stuart Downing, who was a complete surprise call up, there can be little complaints with the other nine players, namely, Theo Walcott, Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard, Gareth Barry, Scott Parker, James Milner, Ashley Young, and Alex Oxlade Chamberlain.

assistant coach

Upside: Coming to America

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Their Words "It's difficult but we are in good shape, we have no injuries and the players are getting sharper by the day. Coming to America is great for the supporters over here that can see the team, but the downside is spending 11 hours on a plane with an eight-hour time difference." Cheslea assistant coach Steve Holland.

Karanka: Ronaldo The Best Player In The World

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It was a long time coming, however, Real Madrid's 2-1 win over arch rivals Barcelona last night was the clearest indication of their desire to win their first league title in 4 years. In fact, the last time Madrid beat Barcelona in the famed El Clasico was when Frank Rijkaard was still Barca coach.

Colorado Rapids

By the Numbers: U-17/18 Teams Kick Off Finals Week

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Storms rolled through earlier in the day, but the fields were in good shape by game time on Monday night

The U-17/18 age group kicked off the 2011-12 Development Academy Finals Week on Monday night at the Houston Amateur Sports Park. Vancouver Whitecaps FC, namely midfielder Ben Fisk, put on a notable offensive performance, while Solar Chelsea SC also impressed with their strong play from the outset.

Colorado Tries To Bounce Back Against Chicago

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Chicago Dog Week at the Class VI/Pid Army tailgate

After a long two weeks in the Northeast the Rapids are finally back at home on Sunday. The Fire are in town and Colorado is trying to right the ship after a bad outing in NY. Game time is 5pm and since its a themed tailgate (see above) the grills start and kegs open at 2pm.

striker

World Cup qualifying: The USA tie Guatemala, 1-1 on the road

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Guatemala, always tough competitors on the road did no damage to that reputation as the USA could not hold onto their lead and had to settle for a draw when Marco Pappa lasered his free kick past Timmy Howard. The USA maintained an 18 match unbeaten streak against Guatemala while Deuce scored his 27th international goal leading him past Joe Max Moore to fourth all time in US history in points scored.

David Moyes Rues FA Cup Loss To Liverpool

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Despondent Everton manager David Moyes admitted his side missed the perfect opportunity to reach the FA Cup final after they lost to Liverpool.
The Reds came from behind to win 2-1 at Wembley with goals from Luis Suarez and Andy Carroll after Nikica Jelavic put Everton ahead.
"It was a great opportunity for us to give ourselves a chance to play in another Wembley final," said Moyes.

David Moyes Rues FA Cup Loss To Liverpool

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Despondent Everton manager David Moyes admitted his side missed the perfect opportunity to reach the FA Cup final after they lost to Liverpool.
The Reds came from behind to win 2-1 at Wembley with goals from Luis Suarez and Andy Carroll after Nikica Jelavic put Everton ahead.
"It was a great opportunity for us to give ourselves a chance to play in another Wembley final," said Moyes.

Portland Timbers Training Quotes and Notes: Futty's Foot is Fine Edition

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At training today, the Portland Timbers got ready to take on the Los Angeles Galaxy in tomorrow's match-up for control of the western conference basement. In another closed practice, the Timbers did not depart form their usual warm-up routine before the press was ushered off the field.

Training saw some good news coming as defender Futty Danso saw his first practice with the team since breaking his foot five weeks ago.

stitches

Williams: TFC are dangerous, more news

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Photo: Nicolae Stoian

Philadelphia Union

Sheanon Williams says of Toronto, "They have no pressure on them, the only way they can look is up. That's definitely dangerous for us. But just looking at ourselves, we need wins, as well. We can't take anyone for granted."

Says Williams of his new center back role, "You won't see me bombing up the wings anymore.

Portland Timbers Practice Quotes And Notes: Purdy is a Riot

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The Portland Timbers held a closed practice today before their final preseason game tomorrow evening.

The Timbers' international players, Rodney Wallace, Steve Purdy, and Futty Danso, were back and training with the team. Purdy, whose injury in El Salvador's 2-0 loss to Estonia on Wednesday night sparked a riot among the El Salvador supporters, looked to be in good shape with only some light swelling and small bandage covering the stitches beneath his right eye.

Major League Soccer

MLS Rankings: Week 8

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Every week the New England Soccer Today crew will look beyond the standings to rank each of the 19 Major League Soccer (MLS) teams. This week Sean Donahue and Ryan Lanigan contributed rankings. Comments are followed by the ranker's name and the rank they gave that team.

1. SPORTING KANSAS CITY (7-1-0, 21 points)
Some rest should have done KC well after suffering their first loss before the break.

Preview: Union vs San Jose Earthquakes

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What: Union vs San Jose Earthquakes

When: 7:00pm ET

Where: PPL Park

Records: Philadelphia: 6-2-3 (1-1-1 at home); San Jose: 5-1-1 (2-0-1 away)

Something you didn't expect to hear a month ago: Look out, here come the Quakes.

Castrillon adapting well with Rapids

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By FRANCO PANIZO

Jaime Castrillon is just two weeks into his first MLS season, but you might not be able to tell based on how he has performed so far.

Through the first two weeks of the 2012 campaign, Castrillon has turned in a pair of solid outings en route to helping the Colorado Rapids jump out to an impressive 2-0 start.

league games

Toulouse toulouse we go?

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Toulouse vs. Olympique Lyonnais

Stadium Municipal de Toulous, Week 32, Ligue 1


Back to our daily bread tonight!

A cup loss inevitably stirs up a hornet's nest all around the team. And seemingly contradictory to all the adjectives being hurled upon team Lyon, I happen to believe the team continues to be in good shape under the conditions made abundantly clear at the start of the season.

To Hammer Toulouse We Go!

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Toulouse Football Club vs. Olympique Lyonnais

Stadium Municipal de Toulous, Week 32, Ligue 1


Back to our daily bread tonight!

A cup loss inevitably stirs up a hornet's nest all around the team. And seemingly contradictory to all the adjectives being hurled upon team Lyon, I happen to believe the team continues to be in good shape under the conditions made abundantly clear at the start of the season.

The Rest

Jailed Steaua Bucharest owner blocks Spurs’ transfer bid for Vlad Chiriches

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Eccentric Steaua Bucharest owner Gigi Becali has thwarted Tottenham's attempts to sign defender Vlad Chiriches from behind bars. Becali, best known for his racist, sexist and outlandish media outbursts against... well, most people he encounters, is currently serving a three-year jail sentence for corruption.

Team GB on form at London 2012

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We may not have taken any golds yet at London 2012 but both the men and women's GB football teams have quietly gone about their business and are in good shape to progress to the last 8.

MEN

A shock win for Senegal over Uruguay means Stuart Pearce's men sit top of their group with one fixture to come against the South Americans tomorrow in Cardiff.

Hydra Sink Voltage

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After a scoreless first half, the Worcester Hydra and Vermont Voltage scored five goals in a 21 minute span in the second half that sent the Hydra away with three points in a 3-2 victory in front of 241 at South Burlington High School on Saturday night.

Seeking to win three in a row after starting the season on a 10 game winless streak, Vermont (2-9-2, 8 points) looked to be in good shape against Worcester (4-3-5, 17 points), taking a 2-1 lead just before the hour mark.

Norway v England – Match Preview – Friendly – 26 May 2012

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England plays their first of two warm-up friendlies against Norway before beginning the UEFA Euro 2012 Championships. The match will take place at the Ullevaal Stadion in Oslo, Norway with kickoff is scheduled for 20:45 BST time.

England manager Roy Hodgson

"It will be a very proud moment.

Alessandro Del Piero gets a goal and a Scudetto in his last home match with Juventus

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One of the classiest footballers to ever wear a Juventus shirt (or any shirt) got the send-off he deserved at his final home match. Juve finished off their undefeated season -- the first in a 38-match Serie A season, according to Paolo Bandini -- with a 3-1 win over Atalanta in which Del Piero scored Juve's second goal.

Pardew – Both Newcastle And Sunderland Doing Great

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When you think of Glasgow Rangers and Portsmouth, two football clubs who have great support, you wonder who has been running those clubs so poorly,  that they are both in bankruptcy and may not even survive. Alan Pardew North East football in good shape We think both clubs will survive, and we certainly hope that both survive,  and certainly [.