Tag Archives: FIFA

Brazil held to 1-1 draw by Switzerland


MNA Sports Desk: Brazil continued the trend of tournament favourites under performing as they were held to a 1-1 draw by Switzerland in their FIFA World Cup 2018 Group E opener in Rostov. Having bowed out of their home tournament four years ago with a 7-1 semi-final defeat to Germany, Brazil initially started their mission to put that humiliation behind them in stunning fashion when Philippe Coutinho struck a sublime goal to open the scoring. Despite dictating the pace of the game, Brazil were never completely dominant and had Switzerland’s rather toothless attack to thank for not taking advantage of the ...

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FIFA plans to expand World Cup to 48 teams


MNA Sports Desk: FIFA President Gianni Infantino is keen on hastening the expansion of the World Cup to 48 teams for the 2022 tournament in Qatar, a move that might require the tiny Gulf nation to share games in the region. The governing body will now study if Qatar can alone cope with the additional logistical challenges of hosting 16 more teams and 16 more games than originally planned for the Middle East’s first World Cup. The jump from 32 to 48 teams was originally only due to apply from the 2026 tournament under plans Infantino secured approval for last ...

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FIFA World Cup 2018 prize money increased


MNA Sports Desk: The prize money for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia has been increased by 12 per cent, president Gianni Infantino said here after the council meeting on Friday. FIFA’s strategic body approved an increase in the prize money to a total amount of $400 million — 12 per cent up from the $358 million of the 2014 edition. The FIFA Council also ratified the decision of the Bureau of the Council of September 6 to approve the enhanced Bidding Regulations for the 2026 FIFA World Cup, and appointed the members of the Bid Evaluation Task Force. ...

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Cristiano Ronaldo retains FIFA award


MNA Sports Desk: Real Madrid’s Portugal striker Cristiano Ronaldo was crowned the best soccer player in the world for the second year running at FIFA’s The Best award gala on Monday. The four-time Ballon d‘Or winner won a La Liga and Champions League double with the Madrid club this year, striking twice against Juventus in the European Cup final to help Real become the first team to retain the trophy in its current format. Barcelona’s Argentina forward Lionel Messi, who has won the Ballond‘or five times, and Paris St Germain’s Brazil forward Neymar were runners up for the award voted ...

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Messi, Ronaldo, Neymar on FIFA shortlist


MNA Sports Desk: Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Neymar have been nominated as finalists for the Best FIFA Men’s Player award, the sport’s governing body said on Friday. Ronaldo helped Real Madrid to a second consecutive Champions League title and finished as the tournament’s top scorer with 12 goals earlier this year. Messi and Neymar claimed the Spanish King’s Cup with Barcelona with the former finishing as La Liga’s top scorer with 37 goals last season. Juventus captain Gianluigi Buffon was shortlisted for the Best FIFA Goalkeeper award after leading the Italian club to a sixth successive Serie A title, ...

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Uruguay, Argentina to announce 2030 World Cup bid next week


MNA Sports Desk: Uruguay and Argentina will officially launch their joint bid for the 2030 World Cup next week at a ceremony involving the country’s two leaders, Uruguay president Tabare Vazquez said Monday. Vazquez said the formal announcement of this would take place during a visit to Uruguay by Argentine counterpart Mauricio Macri on August 30. The move coincides with Uruguay’s 2018 World Cup qualifier against Argentina in Montevideo on August 31, reported news agency. The joint bid between the two South American neighbours had long been signaled. Uruguay, the hosts of the inaugural World Cup in 1930, is hoping ...

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UAE appoint Bauza as national team coach


MNA Sports Desk: United Arab Emirates have appointed Argentinian Edgardo Bauza as the new coach of their national side as they pursue a place at their first FIFA World Cup in almost 30 years. Replacing the outgoing Mahdi Ali, who resigned in March following a 2-0 defeat to Australia, Bauza arrives having recently parted company with his native Argentina. UAE currently sit four points adrift of the Socceroos in fourth as they continue to chase the play-off spot in Asian qualifying Group B. With three games remaining, the Gulf side hope the South American will be able to inspire a ...

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Portugal star Ronaldo wins FIFA’s player of the year

Portugal star

MNA Sports Desk: Cristiano Ronaldo claimed FIFA’s inaugural best player of the year award on Monday, the latest prize for the Real Madrid and Portugal star after a glittering 2016 for club and country. Leicester City”s Claudio Ranieri received the best men’s coach award following his side’s fairytale Premier League triumph. But the night again belonged to the 31-year-old Ronaldo, who edged out long-time nemesis Lionel Messi for the trophy as well as France’s Antoine Griezmann, the top player at this summer’s European championship. “2016 was the best year of my career,” Ronaldo said after being handed the prize from ...

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Cristiano Ronaldo wins Ballon d’Or for the 4th time

Cristiano Ronaldo

MNA Sports Desk: Cristiano Ronaldo has won the Ballon d’Or award for the fourth time, capping a season in which his Portugal side won Euro 2016 and his club, Real Madrid, took the Champions League. Ronaldo is now one short of the record tally of five awards won by Barcelona’s Argentina forward Lionel Messi. “For me it’s a great honour to receive my fourth golden ball. The emotion is like for the first one, it’s a dream come true again. I never thought in my mind to win four times. I’m so happy,” said Ronaldo, who won the award in ...

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UEFA election clouded by Champions League rival

Champions League

MNA Sports Desk: UEFA, the richest and most powerful continental football confederation, elects a new president this week as it confronts a growing challenge to its cash-cow Champions League, reported news agency. The 55-member European confederation must choose between Slovenian Aleksander Ceferin, 48, and veteran Dutch administrator Michael van Praag, 68, to finish the term of the tainted Michel Platini at a special congress in Athens on Wednesday after an increasingly tense campaign. Ceferin has the heavyweight support of more than 20 federations including Germany, France, Portugal and Russia, according to the Slovenian Football Association. England, Belgium and the Netherlands ...

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Former FIFA president Joao Havelange died

Joao Havelange

MNA Sports Desk: Joao Havelange, the former president of FIFA, died in Rio de Janeiro’s Samaritano Hospital on Tuesday. The former Olympic swimmer and water polo player for Brazil had been in and out of the hospital in recent months with respiratory problems. Havelange, who was 100-year-old, was the first non-European to head the International Football Federation (FIFA), world football’s governing body. He was a Brazilian lawyer, businessman, and athlete who served as the 7th President of the FIFA, from 1974 to 1998. His tenure as President is the second longest in FIFA’s history, behind only that of Jules Rimet. ...

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Maradona wants to coach Argentina free of charge


MNA Sports Desk: Diego Maradona wants to coach the national team of Argentina again for free of charge. Argentina has been without a coach since Gerardo Martino stepped down following last month’s loss to Chile in the final of the Copa America. Maradona previously coached Argentina from 2008 through to the 2010. World Cup, where the team reached the quarterfinals before losing 4-0 to Germany – a defeat that eventually cost him his job. He said that “If they said I could fix the team, I’d grab it and do it for nothing.” However, Maradona has not been stated in ...

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China will host international football tournament


MNA Sports Desk: China will host a yearly international football tournament, with different national teams participating, opening from next year, entertainment and property corporation Dalian Wanda Group said Wednesday. The statement comes as Chinese Companies quick up foreign players and clubs as the country upsurges its effect on the international game. The FIFA-approved ‘China Cup’ will start in January 2017 with a four-game event containing China and three teams from Europe and the Americas, Wanda said in a statement. China presently languishes in 81st place in the FIFA world statuses, just behind Zambia and Jordan, and Wanda said that Chinese ...

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Footballer Pele to marry for third time


MNA Sports Desk: Famous footballer Pele is set to marry for third time. Brazil football legend Pele is getting married on Tuesday for the third time, tying the knot with his girlfriend of six years, Marcia Cibele Aoki. Pele, 75-year-old, told O Estado de Sao Paulo newspaper that this time, he has found “love forever”. Pele and Aoki met in New York in the 1980s but only started seeing each other in 2010, when they crossed paths in an elevator in Sao Paulo. Aoki, a 42-year-old businesswoman, has been by the three-time world champion’s side for nearly all his public ...

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Samoura appointed as FIFA’s first female secretary general


MNA Sports Desk: Senegal’s Fatma Samba Diouf Samoura has been appointed as FIFA’s first female secretary general who succeeds former secretary general Jerome Valcke, who was banned from football-related activity for 12 years. Fatma Samoura has no working experience in sports but Gianni Infantino, FIFA’s president- hopes that will help it try to regain the trust and credibility of the world after far-reaching corruption, bribery, and financial misconduct. The organization also swelled to 211 members after Gibraltar and Kosovo were admitted. Samoura, 54-year-old, spent 21 years working for the United Nations and will start at football’s governing body in June. ...

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