Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Ronaldo de Assis Moreira (born March 21, 1980 in Porto Alegre), commonly known as Ronaldinho or Ronaldinho Gaúcho, is a Brazilian footballer who plays for Italian Serie A club A.C. Milan and the Brazil national team.
Ronaldinho, Portuguese for "little Ronaldo", is known in Brazil by the nickname Ronaldinho Gaúcho, in order to distinguish him from Ronaldo, who was already called "Ronaldinho" in Brazil. Ronaldo simply went by his first name upon his move to Europe, thereby allowing Ronaldinho to drop the "Gaúcho" and remain simply as Ronaldinho.
He has played for Paris Saint-Germain, and FC Barcelona, with whom he won his first Champions League in 2006. He became a Spanish citizen in January 2007.
Born into a footballing family (his late father Joao played for Cruzeiro and his brother, now his manager, Roberto played for Gremio), the young Ronaldinho found more enjoyment in futsal and beach football before graduating to playing the standard game.
He began his football career at his brother's old club Gremio in the youth team under future Brazil World Cup winning coach Luiz Felipe Scolari and progressed to the first team aged 18 in 1998 and had made his Brazilian national team debut a year later in 1999.
His goalscoring exploits and sublime skill on the ball drew much attention from Europe and in 2001 Ronaldinho left Gremio to move to France and Paris St. Germain. His time in Paris was littered with fallings out with then PSG coach Luis Fernandez who disapproved of Ronaldinho's love of Parisian nightlife and after two mildly successful years in France he again packed his bags and headed for Barcelona.
In his first season at Barcelona Ronaldinho more than justified his reputed £18m price tag as he helped coax the Catalan giants into second place in La Liga and earnt himself the title of 2004 World Player of the Year.
Having caught the eye of big spending Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, Ronaldinho was the subject of a failed £60m bid from the West London club and despite the resignation of his friend Sandor Rosell as Barcelona's vice president of sports, he signed a new contract in late 2005 with the Catalan club.
As well as helping Barcelona to back to back La Liga titles in 2004/2005 and 2005/2006 and the European Champion's League in 2006, Ronaldinho has also won a host of personal awards including:
FIFA World Player of the Year in 2004 and 2005
FIFPro World Player of the Year in 2005 and 2006
European Footballer of the Year in 2005
UEFA Champions League Best Forward in 2004-05
World Soccer Player of the Year in 2004 and 2005
and UEFA Champions League Most Valuable Player in 2005-06.
Ronaldinho also became a World Cup winner with Brazil in 2002.
Saturday, June 28, 2008
Having made a name for himself at Newcastle FC, gardener turned footballer Santiago Munez (Kuno Becker) is suddenly given the opportunity of a lifetime by being offered a contract with Real Madrid. But although the transition starts out successfully, Santiago soon finds it difficult juggling the pressure and fame of being a Galactico with maintaining a long-distance relationship with his fiance Roz (Anna Friel). Matters are complicated further by the possibility of a reunion with his long-distant mother (Elizabeth Pena).
What we say
The first Goal! movie struggled to find the net in terms of box office figures so it's hardly surprising that the makers have gone for broke with the second part of the proposed trilogy. But much like its predecessor, Goal! II: Living The Dream... struggles to find a consistent tone between the football and the drama.
When on the pitch or the training field it often feels like an extended Nike advert or a pop promo and comes backed with a suitably inspiring soundtrack. But away from the game it's hopelessly cliched and cumbersome, dragging its feet through endless melodrama.
Santiago's relationship difficulties with Roz are tiresome and predictable despite the best efforts of Anna Friel to make them seem otherwise, and the sub-plot involving Santiago's mother and new brother merely serve to drag things out to an unnecessarily long length.
Things work far better when offering viewers the unique opportunity of glimpsing behind-the-scenes at one of the world's biggest clubs, taking them inside the dressing room for pre-game kickabouts and the odd wind-up prank.
It's when the likes of David Beckham, Zinedine Zidane, Roberto Carlos and goalkeeper Iker Casillas feature prominently without ever being called upon to act and when Alessandro Nivola's returning character, Gavin Harris, gets to inject some much-needed humour.
The football action relies on a slickly-produced mix of reality and fiction but, like the rest of the film, feels ludicrously contrived, especially since Santiago scores almost every time he comes off the bench. It's another own goal, particularly during the latter stages.
Had writer Mike Jefferies and director Jaume Collet-Serra opted to tackle things from a grittier perspective, Goal! 2 may have felt a bit more authentic. As things stand, it's a formulaic slice of tautology that strives too hard to keep things clean and Fifa-friendly. It ultimately pays a harsh penalty for such poor refereeing.
Running time: 115mins
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Impossible Is Nothing - adidas launches a new campaign focusing on athlete stories. The twist, adidas are focusing on personal challenges the athletes have overcome in their rise to fame.
Sunday, March 30, 2008
A brand of condoms named after football ace David Beckham has taken the Chinese contraceptive market under its sway. A Chinese company has plastered David Beckham’s name on condoms, claiming users will score with the ladies.
The packet bears the words ‘Bonk Like Beckham’, which recalls Victoria’s recent statements on David’s big and active sexual appetite.
It’s reported that the brand is now the biggest-selling condom brand in China. But sales of the condoms might be stopped. Apparently, this is not an official endorsement; the makers just slapped Beckham’s picture on there without asking for his permission.
Chinese fans of the LA Galaxy soccer star, however, want the marketing of these condoms banned.
“We do not want Beckham to think the Chinese people are disrespecting him. We love him here,” one said.
Saturday, March 15, 2008
Real Madrid Club de Fútbol (also known as Real Madrid, Los Blancos, Los Merengues or in English Royal Madrid Football Club) is a professional Spanish football club based in Madrid. Founded in 1902, it plays in La Liga and is one of the most successful football clubs of the 20th century, having won thirty La Liga titles, seventeen Copa del Rey and a record nine UEFA Champions League titles. The team was a founding member of the now defunct G-14 group of leading European football clubs.
The club plays its home games at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium in Madrid. Real Madrid is unusual in that, unlike most football clubs, it has been owned and operated only by its members (socios) since 1902. On December 23, 2000, FIFA awarded the Spanish team the title of the "Best Club of the 20th Century". Los Blancos is the most successful club in UEFA club football competitions history with nine European Cups and two UEFA Cups; more than any other European club. The only European trophy it hasn't won is the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup, in which it played two finals, losing both by 2 goals to 1, first to Chelsea 2-1 in 1971, after an initial 1-1 draw in the first leg, the team lost 1-0 in the return leg and Aberdeen 2-1 in 1983.
Real Madrid is the biggest and most popular football club in the world according to the case studies at Harvard University in 2007. It is also the richest one in terms of revenue.
Saturday, February 23, 2008
Lionel Messi (born 24 June 1987 in Rosario) is an exciting Argentine soccer player, who currently plays as a second striker for FC Barcelona. He has shown remarkable ability for a player so young, and is often touted in the media as "the new Diego Maradona".
On December of that year, the Italian newspaper Tuttosport awarded him the Golden Boy 2005 title for the best under-21 player in Europe, ahead of Wayne Rooney and Lukas Podolski.
In this series of posts we shall look at the most promising young players who will soon capture our imagination and be the biggest stars of the game. As of this writing we are still awaiting Jose Pekerman’s decision and hopefully we get to see this kid play in the upcoming World Cup in Germany. We continue with Lionel Messi. (This is an advance posting.)
The guy who idolise Diego Maradona won the adidas Golden Shoe award as top scorer, and the adidas Golden Ball as best player in 2005 when he led his team during the FIFA World Youth Championship Netherlands.
Spotted at a very young age, Barcelona saved the dreams of this kid when they funded his medical treatment from a hormone deficiency illness at the age of 13. He returned the favor four years after by becoming the youngest league scorer in Barcelona’s history at the age of seventeen years, ten months and seven days.
This kid has the strength to play rough against veteran opponents and sees the playing field on an extraordinary vision.
People are clamoring for his inclusion in the Argentina side in the upcoming World Cup competition. Although he says that Brazil are the favorites, there is no indication that Argentina would give in easily.