Football Champions

Quarterfinal

-Alfredo Di Stefano: “The best player ever? Pele. Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are both great players with specific qualities, but Pele was better.” -Osvaldo Ardiles: Pele really had everything — goalscoring ability, a great passer, good in the air, quick, he used both feet, almost the perfect footballer. Many words have been written about Pele but his record speaks for itself –more than 1000 goals and three World Cup victories. He also played at a time when attacking players were not protected by referees as much as they are today. -Johan Cruyff: “Pele was the only footballer who surpassed the… Continue reading

THE BIG PICTURE Many will be shocked to see Uruguay still alive and kicking, and just one win away from the World Cup final. Theoretically South America’s fifth best team (based on World qualification) la celeste have outlasted Chile, Paraguay, Brazil and Argentina to be CONMEBOL’s sole remaining representative. Some might even be annoyed at Uruguay’s presence here, since it’s a direct result of Luis Suarez’ handball (since Adiyiah’s header was definitely going in). Good news for those people is that Suarez is suspended for this game as a result of that handball, which breaks up that fearsome Forlan/Suarez combo… Continue reading

THE BIG PICTURE Hands up if you thought this Ghana team would struggle without injured captain/superstar midfielder Michael Essien. Now use that hand to slap yourself in the face. Gently, but still do it. That slap is from the likes of Kevin-Prince Boateng, Kwadwo Asamoah , Anthony Annan and Dede Ayew, all of whom have impressed in midfield for the Black Stars this tournament. The even bigger shock for me has been striker Asamoah Gyan, who was so impotent in front of goal at Africa Cup of Nations 2008 that maniacs started threatening his family, but has looked very… Continue reading

That goal? Surely not. Many forget that Maradona didn’t take one off after his dazzling heroics and choice words from the English in ‘86. In between the quarterfinal of legend against England and final against West Germany, there was a semifinal against Belgium. Sure, Belgium has scraped through twice by the very skin of their teeth and Maradona’s Argentina was Maradona’s Argentina, but one doesn’t make a World Cup semifinal entirely undeserved. (We know, England.)

Meanwhile eight years after Maradona’s Goal of the Century, Saudi Arabia’s Saeed Al-Owairan did the very same – from much deeper in the pitch. Both… Continue reading

FIFA News

Karen Duggan speaks to FIFA.com about Republic of Ireland's quest to make the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019™ their first major tournament and explains why she has opted against turning profe [read]

In the build-up to Russia 2018, FIFA.com will be highlighting some classic FIFA World Cup images. This week we look back to 1974 and the spectacular scenes that greeted the beaten Netherlands team on [read]

With just 22 matches played, all friendlies, since the December edition, it is no surprise to see few significant changes in the first FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking of 2018, with Germany remaining on t [read]

Presidents and general secretaries from 21 FIFA member associations and three confederations (AFC, CONCACAF and UEFA) debated issues, including the FIFA Forward Programme and the future of youth and w [read]

Two-time FIFA World Player of the Year and FIFA World Cup winner Ronaldinho has retired from professional football, bringing to an end a two-decade career on the pitch adorned with medals, trophies an [read]

Trinidad and Tobago will be the setting for the ninth edition of the 2018 CONCACAF Women’s U-20 Championship, which begins on Thursday, with three places at the FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup up for [read]

The FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup France 2018 moved a step closer on Wednesday 17 January, with the announcement of the match schedule. [read]

In the hunt to win the first ever MLS Cup, New York Red Bulls have already made a new signing – two-time Grand Finalist Michael Labelle. [read]

As they chase a first FIFA Women's World Cup in the wake of humbling two-time champions Germany, Iceland are reaping the benefits of significant FIFA Forward-supported investment. FIFA.com hears [read]