Stories about Lionel Messi

Germany deserved to win

The disappointment of the lacklustre opening ceremony was short lived and, from the opening goal of the tournament to Germany lifting the cup in the finals, it was well compensated in every manner possible with great entertainment and thrilling matches throughout the tournament. The World Cup could not have begun on a more dramatic note, with Marcelo scoring a first own-goal by a Brazilian in the history of the tournament, watched by over 62,000 Brazilians live. But Neymar also struck twice during the match and as distress turned into ecstasy for Brazilians everywhere, we experienced what it meant to be part of such ...

Read Full Post

In Messi I believe!

It has been a long time coming. Since Euro 2008, the Germans have been hovering around the edges of supremacy. Their only crime being that Spain, forever the underachievers had been pegged by fate as its darling. What Jürgen Klinsman started at World Cup 2006 resulted in a finals defeat to the Spanish in Euro 2008, a semi-final defeat to the same opposition at South Africa 2010 and the Italians in the semi-finals of Euro 2012. This time, however, the Spanish have been vanquished by their own doing. The once-famed Brazilians have been annihilated in an absurd seven minute stretch of play that will linger on as a scar ...

Read Full Post

Four ways Pakistani cricket is like Argentinian football

I was barely six-years-old when Diego Maradona’s individual brilliance almost singlehandedly won the World Cup for Argentina in Mexico. For a boy watching the event with his sports crazy family, the event was electric, with the iconic images of Maradona dancing through the opposition, and eventually lifting the trophy, forever imprinted in my brain. Equally iconic were the images of Maradona crying four years later, after his side was cruelly penalised by the referee in the final against West Germany. Even later, when Maradona shed tears after struggling with substance abuse, I shared his pain, and supported my hero, ignoring the fact that he ...

Read Full Post

Will Germany lift the cup in 2014 FIFA World Cup?

With 136 goals in the group stages alone, the 2014 edition of the FIFA World Cup in Brazil seems to be well on its way to break the record for most goals scored in the history of the event (France 1998 – 171 goals).  Labelled by some as the most exciting World Cup till date, fans around the globe have been glued to their television sets, regardless of the time difference. A number of big teams, including defending champions Spain, former champions Italy and England along with Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal, have been shown the door before the knockout phase, which begins in a few ...

Read Full Post

2014 FIFA World Cup: The good, the bad and the ugly

The Brazilian Carnival is one of the world’s most colourful and exhilarating events – Outdoor parties, colourful performers, magnificent floats, talented musicians. It truly is a fine exhibition of the Brazilian culture. The world was expecting a similarly elating event when the 2014 FIFA World Cup opening ceremony kicked off on June 12, 2014, at Arena Corinthians Stadium in Sao Paulo. Unfortunately, it turned out to be perhaps the worst World Cup opening ceremonies ever. The organisers of the event failed to understand that Brazil is more than just talented football players and colourful costumes. It has a rich culture ...

Read Full Post

For the betterment of the beautiful game, Luis Suarez’s career must not bite the dust

Once again, the best and worst of Luis Suarez came to the fore during the two matches that he has played in the World Cup; single-handedly destroying England despite being only half fit in the first match and, having been frustrated by an organised Italian side in the second, biting centre-back Giorgio Chiellini on the shoulder. Touted by many as one of the favourites to win the Golden Boot, alongside fellow South Americans Neymar and Lionel Messi, Suarez showed his class and passion for the game when he scored the winning brace and broke down into tears at the final ...

Read Full Post

Want to learn about the 2014 FIFA World Cup? Go to Lyari, Pakistan’s mini Brazil

It is said that things are not always the same on the inside as they may seem on the outside. Don’t judge a book by its cover. The same phrase can be said for Lyari’s current situation. Lyari is one of the oldest and most densely populated areas of Karachi, where people belonging from different races and ethnicities have been living together for years. However, people need to understand that Lyari’s real identity has been manipulated and the area is wrongly presented as a symbol of terror and fear. It is not as bad as it is portrayed by the media or discussed ...

Read Full Post

Will Spain be able to recover from the 2014 World Cup debacle?

How ironic is it that Spain had a new king just hours after the country’s football team relinquished their crown in Brazil? And how symbolic is it that it happened at the Maracana Stadium? Oh the Maracana. While Brazil still sees ghosts of 1950 and Uruguay, there will be new skeletons in the closet for Spain for years to come at this iconic venue, for this is the ground that finally saw the end of Spain’s glorious era. All great teams have a cycle. And alas, Spain’s has ended. It was Chile, one of the teams Spain defeated on the way to World Cup glory four ...

Read Full Post

FCB vs Atletico: The outstanding, the mediocre and the ugly

The 2013-14 UEFA Champions League quarterfinals clash between FC Barcelona and FC Atletico Madrid ended in a gruelling 1-1 draw. The end result was somewhat of a surprise; Barca played with the same intensity as they do at home but the relentless defending from Atletico proved to be an equal match. Although both sides put in a solid team effort, there were certainly some outstanding individual contributions. Atletico Madrid’s defenders: Juan Francisco Torres (Juanfran), Diego Godin and Filipe Luís Kasmirski As the match progressed, they were quite rightly being quoted as the yellow wall. They blocked, intercepted and cleared ambitious runs-ins from Lionel Messi, Daniel Alves and Neymar time ...

Read Full Post

Ronaldo won the Ballon D’Or but Messi deserved it!

Cristiano Ronaldo won the fourth 2013 FIFA Ballon D’Or and he rightly deserved it. The types of performances he showed last year have been, without a doubt, extraordinary. The fact that in terms of performance statistics, he outscored the other two contenders to top the charts makes his case very strong. If he had failed this time, the credibility of Ballon D’Or would have been seriously questioned. In the end, it was a good result for football in general. However, the result doesn’t reflect accurately on who the best footballer in the world is. People have made all sorts of arguments in favour of ...

Read Full Post