Ligue 1: French Special Forces Parachute Match Ball Into Stadium Ahead Of Marseille-Monaco Match (Photos & Video)

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The French special forces put on un petit show ahead of Marseille's big game against Monaco on Sunday night.

In what amounted to a significant waste of time and resources, the 13th Parachute Dragons Regiment of theArmée de Terre scrambled a helicopter to fly the match-ball in from a nearby base before parachuting it down onto the pitch before kick-off.

Video: Alex Oxlade Chamberlain mocks Arsenal team-mate Aaron Ramsey over lack of pace

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Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey was ridiculed by team-mates Alex Oxlade Chamberlain and Theo Walcott over his lack of pace. The Welshman's post-match interview was hijacked by the Ox, who immediately quizzed him on his failure to get on the end of a long ball from Lukasz Fabianski. Walcott and Oxlade-Chamberlain then took it in turns [.

Video: Paraglider lands on an Ecuadorian player during warm-up

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Bizarre scenes from the warm-up ahead of a match between Ecuadorian sides LDU Quito and Barcelona Sporting Club. The players were preparing for the match while fans were due to be treated to seeing some paragliders landings in the stadium. Unfortunately, one of them managed to land on Argentine striker Claudio Bieler.

Slavia Prague vs Viktoria Plzen Interrupted By Most Elaborate Pitch Invasion On Record (Video)

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By Chris Wright

With football team's now staging naked ballets in training and employing unicorns to canter down rainbows and deliver the matchball before kick-off, it's perhaps understandable that fans at Slavia Prague's match against Viktoria Plzen over the weekend thought they were being treated to a bit of half-time entertainment when a rogue parachutist plummeted from nowhere and landed on the pitch during the interval.

Football League

Signore Pantalone and the Pompey Comedy of Errors

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It is often the last resort of the villain in a pantomime to curse his conquerors with his dying breath. Which thought leads me directly to  the vainglorious attacks of  Pompey's chief creditor, Balram Chainrai, on the Pompey Supporters' Trust. Indeed, not only the Pompey Trust but the entire Trust movement.

The Twohundredpercent Pre-Season Previews: The Championship

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For the purpose of our Football League reviews, we will be taking a look at the respective divisions in an overall sense rather than trying to make predictions or inspecting the clubs concerned too closely. If you are here looking for in-depth predictions made by the supporters of each of the seventy-two clubs of the Football League, we would recommend the venerable When Saturday Comes and its annual pre-season preview, which is available now from all good newsagents, or alternatively this collaborative project between two Football League blogs, The Seventy Two and The Two Unfortunates.

The Sad Saga of Plymouth Argyle

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Plymouth Argyle are languishing at the bottom of League 1, ten points having been deducted by the Football League for an ‘insolvency event', giving notice of their intention to appoint administrators.Players have not been paid since November and their debts are estimated at £13m.


Yet in 2008 they finished 10th in the Championship, had posted a £1.

English Premier League

Jarvis and Fletcher Move a Mistake

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The departure of Wolves wingers, Matt Jarvis and Steven Fletcher, to West Ham and Sunderland, respectively, will leave a bitter taste in the mouth for Molineux fans, who see their hopes of bouncing straight back into the Premier League take a cruel blow.

For many fans from the Black Country, their season tickets will have already been bought, shelling out good money to watch their beloved club attempt to regain Premier League status.

Blackburn Rovers Relegated From Premier League

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Former Premier League champions Blackburn Rovers have been relegated after losing 1-0 at home to Wigan tonight. Antolin Alcaraz's goal in the 87th minute was enough to keep Wigan in the Premier League for another season.

There were ugly scenes at the final whistle when some Blackburn fans ran onto the field at Ewood Park in further opposition to the club's management and owners on a night of protest at Ewood Park.

Blackburn Rovers Relegated From Premier League

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Former Premier League champions Blackburn Rovers have been relegated after losing 1-0 at home to Wigan tonight.  Antolin Alcaraz's goal in the 87th minute was enough to keep Wigan in the Premier League for another season.

There were ugly scenes at the final whistle when some Blackburn fans ran onto the field at Ewood Park in further opposition to the club's management and owners on a night of protest at Ewood Park.

Pay Up Pompey, Pompey Pay Up

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How on earth did it come to this again? Two years ago, Portsmouth Football Club became the poster boys for football's wretched current condition when they became the first Premier League club to be nudged into administration. For all the heartache that this caused, the club was due to be getting a clean start with this move a move which, it should be remembered, sealed the club's fate with regard to relegation from the Premier League in the first place but it has only taken two years to get back to administration again, and this time the feeling in the air around Fratton Park has a distinctly fatalistic mood about it.

Liverpool Seek Break From Premier League TV Deal

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The Premier League approaches television rights negotiations as a collective, seeking the best price for all the leauge's clubs and then sharing the resulting revenue, for the most part, equally. And late on Tuesday, it became clear that Liverpool managing director Ian Ayre intended to lead a fight to destroy that system.

The Twohundredpercent Pre-Season Previews: The Isthmian League Premier Division

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The Premier League is again a case of totting up balance sheets. The Championship's glorious unpredictability is gradually being eroded by the distorting effects of parachute payments. The most important aspect of Leagues One and Two could again be those dreaded asterixes against points totals which don't add up to games won or drawn.

The Twohundredpercent Pre-Season Previews: Norwich City

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At the end of last season, it rather felt as if one of the more significant success stories of the previous ten months had been overlooked. As the nation salivated over Barcelona in the Champions League and cheered Wimbledon back into the Football League, Norwich City supporters could have been forgiven for feeling a little bit forgotten for having achieved something a little bit special back to back promotions which ended with the club back in the Premier League.

Relegation Will Cost West Ham £46m

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The football economy had an article today on what relegation means to West Ham financially. It does not paint a rosy picture if you are a West Ham fan.

More than half of West Ham's 2009-10 turnover of £71.7m came from Premier League revenue distributions. The minimum £40m of television and central sponsorship income for the bottom club (up from £31.

Cost Of Relegation Is Huge For West Ham

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The football economy had an article today on what relegation means to West Ham financially. It does not paint a rosy picture if you are a West Ham fan.

More than half of West Ham's 2009-10 turnover of £71.7m came from Premier League revenue distributions. The minimum £40m of television and central sponsorship income for the bottom club (up from £31.

Liverpool game moved. Bah humbug

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Is football over estimating the loyalty of fans? The Liverpool game at the end of the season has now been switched from a Saturday afternoon to a Monday night so it can be shown on television. This might not be such a bad thing, except that the game's long been sold out and many fans will have made their travel plans already.

Cameron Park Could Be On His Way To Anfield

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Middlesbrough academy graduate Cameron Park is a transfer target for Liverpool reports the Times.
Described as an outstanding left-sided prospect, the 18-year-old winger has captured the attention of Reds' Director of Football Strategy Damien Comolli.
The Liverpool chief has reportedly been in touch with the Championship club over a possible move to Anfield in the summer.

How Sullivan And Gold Can Rescue West Ham From Relegation

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Avram, You're The Man.

Is West Ham's solution to saving the club from relegation as simple as the formula of sacking Avram Grant as soon as possible, sign Sam Allardyce to replace him and give the manager six players who can walk in to Upton Park and make an immediate difference?


Mid-Day Ticker: Portsmouth may not end season, Fowler on Blackpool trial & more

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 Photo by Kieran McManus/


Oh, how the mighty have fallen.

Less than four years after winning the F.A. Cup, Portsmouth is in danger of not completing this Championship season, administrator Trevor Birch said.

Robbie Savage’s mega Championship preview plus Sarah’s saying and this week’s compo

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Robbie Savage's mega Championship preview plus Sarah's saying and this week's compo

Losing your best two players is a nightmare for anyone. Imagine United missing Rooney and Rio. Imagine Barca shorn of Messi and Xavi. Now imagine the Championship without me and Craig Bellamy.

Torres and Reina in Bullshit Rumour Shocker

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Slow news these days. Must mean it's about time to just start making shit up. Take it away, Daily Mirror:

Fernando Torres and Pepe Reina are ready to quit Liverpool in January thanks to secret escape clauses in their contracts.

Secret escape clauses? They're doing that now?

La Liga

The Greatest League in the World is…

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La Liga? Don't make me laugh, every year it's a two-horse race, the Spanish equivalent of the SPL. What about the goal-hungry Bundesliga? Not quite. Don't get me wrong, Borussia Dortmund have impressed me this season with a +26 goal difference, but the rest of the league is poor. So it has to be the Premiership?

TV rights row threatens to split Spanish football

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The new La Liga TV rights deal is unfair to everyone except Madrid and Barcelona.

A rift is beginning to develop in Spanish football over the share of future television money from the LFP (Spanish League) after a meeting attended by all first division clubs.

Six of them Sevilla, Zaragoza, Villarreal, Real Sociedad, Athletic Bilbao and Espanyol have all officially distanced themselves from any proposed agreement, and Sevilla president José María del Nido, spokesman for the group, explained the position to Palabra de Fútbol radio:

"Only Real Madrid and Barcelona stand to gain from this," he said.

The Rest

Philadelphia Union announce new fan experience at Talen Energy Stadium

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It's going to be a lot different this year.

The Philadelphia Union announced yesterday that there would be some major changes to the game-day experience for fans, ranging from new forms of entertainment to new food and drink at the concession stands. For this opening weekend, there will be additional banners in the match walk out, and the game ball will be delivered from a skydiver who will parachute into the stadium to give the officials the ball.

Soccerama – The best game I’ve ever played

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"The best game I've ever played" is a remarkable endorsement for any man to make. But when the man making the claim is Alan Ball four years after lifting the Jules Rimet World Cup trophy with England you start to sit up and take notice. The game Ball  is promoting is Soccerama, a board game released in the early 1970s.

Great Football League Teams 27: Bolton Wanderers, 1996-7

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Booker Prize winner: The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy John Peel Festive 50 Number 1: Cornership: Brimful of Asha Poet Laureate: Ted Hughes President of Libya: Muammar al-Gaddafi In recent years, parachute payments have helped ease the agony of relegation even if their bounteousness can lull a club into thinking the cash flow is never ending.

Blogathon: Fighting against big team mentality

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Absolutely delighted to welcome blogging legend and French football's main man Andrew Gibney to the party this hour.

Indefatigable, Andrew can be found all over the internet including The Mirror's football blog and, nominated as one of the year's best new blog, French Football Weekly.

Follow him @AGibneyFtbl

Here's Andrew on relegation issues in France and England:

From years of following Scottish football you get drawn into a malaise of comfort-ability.

Dropping In On A Game

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As far as pitch invasions go, there's Jimmy Jump, Antonio Cassano's BFF (Mario Ferri) and any moderately attractive willing to expose her bouncy parts to the elements. That's all that comes to the top of the head, anyway.

It matters not, as the hierarchy has been destroyed. This unnamed pitch invader, possibly Bond, James or Bourne, Jason, dropped in on the Sparta Prague Viktoria Plzen (big game on the Czech calendar) at the half.

Hello Cargo

The Offside Rules at related • 0 views is over. As of today TOR will move exclusively to I'll keep this address as an archive of good times-past and as a parachute in case both you and I agree that the new look is whack in the long run.

Pretty much the only thing that is changing is the layout/user experience, which is kind of a big deal but not really.

Wednesday's Upside: One Game In

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Their Words I'm very happy with the way we scored the goals but not only that, the way we played, being so sharp defending. It's a good start to the World Cup. USA Women's coach Pia Sundhage. Other Sources Six ways to fix American soccer - from The San Diego Union-Tribune's Mark Zeigler: Here's how to avoid falling off, or at least how to open a parachute.

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Recently Robin van Persie was spotted over the coastal town of Portsmouth engaging in some leisure activity. Skydiving to be exact. In his full kit and cleats for Christ's sake.

It's all part of a new marketing effort from an American PR firm to add more excitement and synergy to the start of the match.

The Red Report – Episode 8: New teams, Evans and the ill-fated World Cup bid

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Welcome to the eighth issue of The Red Report, the round table discussion of all things Manchester United by your favourite United blogs: The Busby Way, Stretford-End, Bangalore To Old Trafford, ManUtd24, and Red Force Rising.

This week we welcome United Youth to the Red Report team as we take a look first at new Premier League teams, then Jonny Evans and we finish by discussing the World Cup bid results.

Dad and Son Send iPhone To Space!

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Homemade Spacecraft from Luke Geissbuhler on Vimeo.

A Brooklyn father/son team decided to do a little science experiment involving an iPhone, an HD camera, a weather balloon, and a takeout box. Their goal was to capture footage of space. And they did. Space and our atmosphere can be pretty harsh, so they put hand warmers on the interior of the ramped up takeout box to insulate the iPhone and camera from the unbelievably cold temperatures and 150 mph winds.