Stories about Champions League

UEFA Champions League returns with a thrill of emotions

It’s the mid of February, which means the knockout stages of the Champions League, and the ride to the final match – which will be held in Berlin on June 6th – is just round the corner. And I am sure that it would be nothing less than thrilling. Before the league officially begins, I think it would be a good idea to look at all the teams and assess their chances at winning. So here goes: Schalke 04 versus Real Madrid Schalke got a run for their money when they played Real Madrid the round of 16 ties last season, losing 6-1 ...

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Ballon d’Or 2014, Cristiano Ronaldo and becoming the Alpha-male of football

For the second time in a row and third overall, Portugal and Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo has been crowned as the best player in the world, beating the likes of Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and Bayern Munich’s Manuel Neuer at the glitzy gala in Zurich, Switzerland. The result comes as little surprise as the Portuguese has had a remarkable year, winning three trophies for his club – UEFA Champions League, Copa del Rey, UEFA Super Cup – and netting an astounding 54 goals in 60 appearances for club and country during the voting period (November 30, 2013 to November 21, 2014). On ...

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The miraculous 3-4-2-1 — The perfect end to the year for Liverpool

Liverpool ended the year on a high note as the £25million signing from Southampton, Adam Lallana, scored a brace, while the entire squad shined on Monday night at Anfield. The Reds completed a 4-1 rout of manager Brendan Rodgers’s former club Swansea City AFC. The last Premier League game of the year was a delight to watch as both sides contested for the win; however, Liverpool were by far the dominant side and went into the lead with Alberto Moreno netting the goal – his second of the campaign – in the 33rd minute. The second half kicked off quite brightly as two goals in two ...

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A year in football: 2014’s best football moments

2014 is knitting its ends. A look at the emotional and action-packed moments the year brought in football makes many lucid memories, debates, emotions and honours come alive. Here’s to a memorable year in football that decisively went down in history. Here are the ten action-packed moments of 2014 that left us coping with a tornado of convoluted emotions: 1)  Brazil 1-7 Germany The host team, Brazil, saw itself in the semi-finals against Germany. The limelight fixture gathered unique attention when Brazil suffered a staggering loss of 7-1 to Germany. The Germans engraved their milestone on South American soil with goals rapidly accumulating into an epic score ...

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Liverpool: Brendan Rodgers, you’ll never walk alone

Liverpool, one of the most decorated football clubs in the world, has been going through an extremely rough patch since the departure of ‘bite master’, Luis Suarez, to Barcelona in the summers. Manager Brendan Rodgers has faced pressures of organising a side plagued by injuries and consistency issues, after a scintillating run and an ‘almost incredible’ season last year. To add to the woes, the team qualified for the Champions League. Although this achievement did seem like a blessing at the moment, due to their absence from the elite competition since the last five years, it became a platform to highlight the frailties of the team. Simply ...

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5 reasons Manuel Neuer deserves the Ballon d’Or

Finally, after much anticipation, the list is out. And it’s out with a bang. Three players have been shortlisted for the prestigious award and it is no surprise that this year’s trio of the planet’s best players yet again includes the giants of the football world, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. What is enthralling about this year’s award, however, is that this time it is not Xavi or Andrés Iniesta or Franck Ribery who will compete with Ronaldo and Messi – this time, it is a goalkeeper. This time it is the ‘SuperManu’, the ‘sweeper-keeper’, the legendary German and Bayern Munich goalkeeper, Manuel Neuer, who ...

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Living in the era of Lionel Messi

It seems almost superlative now to add to the tally of articles and tributes that have rained down on the diminutive Argentinian since last Saturday. However, acknowledging the unlikelihood that any of us will witness the level of skill, precision and magic that he has brought to us in our generation again, I suppose ‘enough’ could never be said. In a week dominated by headlines that Lionel Messi, despite his contract tying him to Barcelona till 2019, was “unhappy” with the club, he went back to doing what he does best against an excellent Sevilla outfit. He scored a hatrick; displaying each of the attributes previously ...

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Hanging by a thread – Liverpool’s Champions League hopes still hang in the balance

Having seen the worst possible starts from the once-mighty Reds since 1982 in the Premier League, the Merseyside giants travelled to the outskirts of Bulgaria to take on Ludogorets Razgrad with the hopes of securing their berth in the last 16 of Europe’s elite club competition. The fact that the Bulgarian side – currently in their first Champions League campaign and with a record transfer fee of just $1.5million – stands tall in front of the Reds is a matter of concern for Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers, who has been piled with criticism in the recent weeks for his ...

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Will Real Madrid survive this international break?

As the international break starts, club football fans are going through a period of frustration and agony, particularly those who follow Real Madrid. Real Madrid has had an incredible run of form in the past couple of months – winning every game they’ve played since the loss against local rivals Atletico Madrid on September 13, 2014. Their unbeaten run in the past 13 games include matches against other football giants such as Barcelona, Liverpool and Villareal. What’s more amazing is the absolute dominance Real Madrid has on the field. From an impeccable mid-field to an ever improving defence, the team keeps getting better at each aspect of the ...

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Premier League rollercoaster: Who will lift the cup?

With the FA Community Shield behind us, it’s time to gear up for the new Premier League season. Those who followed the world’s most competitive football competition were left stunned at the pleasant unpredictability of the season. Week in, week out, the league table would morph completely. It went all the way down to a nail-biting end; and Manchester City took the title on the basis of a great attack and some major inconsistencies of their rival clubs. Looking at all the major contenders for the coveted top four Champions League spots this upcoming season, one can’t help but get a little giddy ...

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