Category: Worldwide

Gold Cup 2017: 6th title for the USA!

Gold Cup 2017: 6th title for the USA!

Thanks to a 2-1 win over Jamaica at Levi’s Stadium United States of America clinched their sixth Gold Cup trophy. Mexico failed to defend their title, whilst Canada played below expectations at the 2017 CONCACAF championship.

United States of America were desperate to regain the Gold Cup trophy, but they did not kick-off their campaign in style, with the team sharing the spoils with Panama in their opener. Coach Bruce Arena did not count on star players for the group games, but thanks to back-to-back wins over Martinique and Nicaragua the Yanks booked their place in the Gold Cup quarter-finals.

With the likes of Clint Dempsey, Jozy Altidore and Michael Bradley in the starting XI Bruce Arena’s troops faced no difficulties in a 2-0 win over El Salvador and, to make things even better for the fans, USA outplayed Costa Rica in the semis of the tournament.

United States of America were regarded as hot favourites to win the title game against Jamaica, but the match against Reggae Boyz was anything but a walk in the park for the hosts. Jozy Altidore broke the deadlock at the stroke of half-time, but five minutes into the second half Jamaica scored the equalizer (Je-Vaughn Watson). The match was on the verge of going into extra-time, but Jordan Morris eventually scored a dramatic late winner for Bruce Arena’s team and helped the Yanks win their sixth Gold Cup trophy.

Mexico coach Juan Carlos Osorio decided to count on Liga MX-based players for the 2017 Gold Cup and, as a result, El Tri failed to defend their trophy. El Tri did well to beat El Salvador in the opening match of their Gold Cup campaign, but they were hold to a goalless draw by Jamaica in their second group game. As expected, the Mexicans defeated Curacao in their final group game and, as a result, they set up a meeting with Honduras in the quarter-finals of the tournament.

Rodolfo Pizarro scored the only goal of the match, but El Tri were not at their sharpest in the victory over Honduras. Despite being considered favourites on paper to win the semi-final against Jamaica, Mexico suffered a shocking loss to the Reggae Boyz at Rose Bowl and it has to be said that Juan Carlos Osorio’s men did not deserve to win the trophy at the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup.

Even though many people expected that Canada would play an important role at the 2017 Gold Cup, les Rouges were beaten by Jamaica in the quarter-finals of the tournament, but it has to be noted that rising star Alphonso Davies won the Golden Boot Award. Costa Rica made it to the semis, but United States of America proved to be a big catch for los Ticos in the AT&T Stadium clash. However, it has to be noted that key player Joel Campbell was forced to miss the match with a knee injury. Panama (quarter-finals) could have recorded a better result at the tournament as well, but, taking everything, USA totally deserved to win the prestigious title.


Confederations Cup 2017 Preview

Confederations Cup 2017 Preview

Russia will host the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup. World champions Germany face the likes of Chile, Portugal, and Russia in Group A, whereas Mexico have been grouped with Australia, Cameroon and New Zealand. Title holders Brazil failed to qualify for the Confederations Cup and it remains to be seen who is going to win the 2017 tournament.

Germany proved their worth at the 2016 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, with the team beating Argentina in the final of the showpiece tournament. Mario Gotze scored the winner for Joachim Low’s troops in the title game, but the Borussia Dortmund midfielder misses the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup. Joachim Low has decided to rest key players for 2018 World Cup qualifiers and it has to be noted that the likes of Thomas Muller, Tony Kroos, Mario Gomez, Mesut Ozil, Jerome Boateng and Mats Hummels have been omitted from the Germany Confederations Cup squad. On the other hand, youngsters Leon Goretzka, Leroy Sane, Timo Werner and Julian Brandt have been given a chance to prove their worth at the upcoming tournament in Russia.

Chile did well to defend their Copa America title last year, with the team beating Argentina on penalties in the final of the tournament in USA. As a result, La Roja will represent South America at the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup and they certainly have big ambitions for the quadrennial international men’s football tournament hosted by Russia. Alexis Sanchez was scoring goals for fun in the 2016/2017 Premier League campaign, with the former Barcelona attacker netting 24 goals in 38 appearances in the league for Arsenal and, no doubt, he will be the man to watch in Juan Antonio Pizzi’s team at the Confederations Cup. Bayern Munich ace Arturo Vidal made the squad as well and he is likely to pose a big threat for the opposition defenders.

Despite being regarded as underdogs in the Euro 2016 final against France, Portugal defeated les Tricolores in the title game at Stade de France, with the team winning their first ever trophy at major tournaments. Seeing that Germany arrive in Russia with a severely-weakened squad, many football predictions are pointing towards A Selecao winning the 2017 FIFA Conferderations Cup. Cristiano Ronaldo helped Real Madrid defend their Champions League trophy last month and the former all eyes will be on the former Manchester United superstar when Portugal kick off their 2017 Confederations Cup campaign with a game against Mexico on June 18.

Speaking of Mexico, they booked their place at the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup thanks to a 3-1 win over Jamaica in the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup final. El Tri are on the right track to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup as well and they are certainly high on confidence ahead of the trip to Russia. Real Sociedad ace Carlos Vela, Bayer Leverkusen striker Javier Hernandez and Porto midfielder Hector Herrera all made the Mexico squad and it is no surprise many football experts suggest that Juan Carlos Osorio’s men are going to record a good result at the upcoming Confederations Cup.

Considering that Germany coach Joachim Low will not count on several first-team regulars for the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup, Portugal should be considered No. 1 favourites to win the tournament and given Cristiano Ronaldo’s thrilling form, the European champions are likely to give fans yet another reason for celebration. The likes of Russia, New Zealand, Cameroon and Australia have slim chances of winning the trophy, but they should not be written off just yet.

Red Bull and modern football: Blessing or Curse?

Red Bull and modern football: Blessing or Curse?

Red Bull GmbH is an Austrian company which has a big influence on world football. The company owns several football clubs and, as latest reports in Netherlands suggest, Red Bull are likely to expand into Eredivisie.

Red Bull used to sponsor only extreme sports events in the past, but they have been highly active in football in recent years. The company owns the likes of Red Bull Salzburg, New York Red Bulls, Red Bull Brasil, RB Leipzig and Red Bull Ghana and they are eager to buy more.

Over the years Red Bull Salzburg have established themselves as the dominant force in Austrian Bundesliga and they are on the right track to win their fourth consecutive domestic trophy. Salzburg are undisputedly the best team in Austria, but the club chiefs will have to reinforce the squad in the summer transfer window if they are to help the team book a place in the Champions League. It has to be noted that Salzburg have never participated in the group stages of the elite competition and, no doubt, that is considered the club’s main goal for the 2017/2018 season.

On March 9, 2006 Red Bull GmbH purchased New York and the club named was changed to “Red Bull New York”. Two years later the club made it to the MLS Cup final, but they eventually failed to win the domestic trophy. Anyhow, the new owners are doing a great job with the Metros and it is well known that they managed to bring legendary French striker Thierry Henry to the club in July 2010. The former Arsenal man scored 51 goals in 122 appearances for New York Red Bulls in MLS and, no doubt, he has become the symbol of the club.

Red Bull GmbH are on the right track to make history with RB Leipzig. The newcomers sit in second place in Bundesliga and they are likely to book their place in the Champions League for the first time in the club’s history. Leipzig have been producing outstanding performances in the 2016/2017 season and, no doubt, the club management is doing a great job with the Red Bull Arena outfit. The club owners have big plans for the future with the Bundesliga team and they aim to build a new stadium with a capacity of 80,000 seats. As reports in Germany suggest, a move to the new venue could be possible in 2020.

Anyhow, the company do not want to stop now. Red Bull GmbH aim to purchase an Eredivisie side as well and Red Bull Netherlands director Jan Smilde finds the idea very interesting as the philosophy of the energy drink company is to own it all. Red Bull GmbH reportedly wants to own a smaller club, so the likes of PSV and Ajax are definitely off.

The energy drink giants are planning to buy a Premier League club as well and, no doubt, they will play an important role in world football in the future as their wish is to keep on investing in clubs from all around the globe.