Soccer News by ESPN

Arsenal name Lucas Perez, Emile Smith Rowe to squad for Singapore tour

23 hours 34 minutes ago
The International Champions Cup will have plenty of world class goalkeepers in action, so be sure to not miss these high-flying shot stoppers. Arsenal forward Lucas Perez and 17-year-old Emile Smith Rowe have been included in the team's preseason tour to Singapore, while midfielder Jeff Reine-Adelaide was among the most notable exclusions from Unai Emery's 25-man squad. Perez's future has been the subject of speculation after he spent last season on loan in Spain but he has been back training with Arsenal for the last couple of weeks and will be given a chance to impress Emery in International Champions Cup games against Atletico Madrid...
Mattias Karen, Arsenal correspondent

With Cristiano Ronaldo gone, it's time for someone else to step up as Real Madrid's leader

23 hours 54 minutes ago
ESPN FC's La Liga correspondent Sid Lowe explains what it will take for Gareth Bale to seize the opportunity left by Cristiano Ronaldo's departure. ESPN FC's Stewart Robson explains why Real Madrid should explore other options before making Gareth Bale the focal point of the team. There is a fresh sense of hope in the air at preseason training sessions around the world. Nowhere could this be truer than at Real Madrid even if it is mixed with tinges of apprehension as to where their new era will lead them. There are new schemes and concepts being implemented by new manager Julen Lopetegui and there is a battle getting ready to commence for the alpha male role in the dressing room and on the field. Typically, at this stage of preseason, players not named Cristiano Ronaldo...
Robbie Dunne

Aston Villa to receive 'significant investment' from new financial backers

1 day ago
Fulham celebrate their victory over Aston Villa and resulting Premier League promotion by lifting the promotion playoff trophy at Wembley. Tom Cairney's first-half goal proved enough as ten-man Fulham hung on for a 1-0 win to beat Aston Villa and return to the Premier League. Aston Villa will receive a "significant investment" from NSWE, a company jointly owned by billionaires Nassef Sawiris and Wes Edens, the English Championship club announced on Friday. Egyptian Sawiris is estimated to be worth over £3 billion by Forbes, while American Edens is the co-owner of NBA's Milwaukee Bucks. Villa owner Dr Tony Xia, who held talks with the Egyptian group, will remain on the board and becomes co-chairman. "I am extremely pleased to have formed a strategic partnership with...
Reuters

Barcelona's new signing Arthur hitting the ground running, looking right at home

1 day ago
While Andres Iniesta may have moved on from Barcelona, new signing Arthur discusses how he hopes to emulate his habits and successes. In theory, Barcelona have been back in training for over a week as the second year of Ernesto Valverde's tenure begins. In practice, though, you could argue they haven't been back at all. Of the 15 players who took part in the first session last Wednesday, five were returning from loan spells, two spent last season on the B team and only two, Sergi Roberto and Nelson Semedo, played regularly last term. The other six -- Jasper Cillessen, Lucas Digne, Andre Gomes, Denis Suarez, Paco Alcacer and Aleix...
Samuel Marsden

Croatia's Nikola Kalinic declines World Cup medal after being sent home early

1 day ago
Croatia's World Cup team returned to a heroes' welcome at Zagreb airport following their 4-2 defeat to France in the World Cup final in Moscow. Croatia fell short in their first World Cup final, but the FC crew explain what made the Vatreni's run so impressive. Croatia forward Nikola Kalinic has not accepted a runners-up medal after his country's 4-2 World Cup final defeat to France because he was sent home early in the competition, reports in the Croatian media said. Kalinic, dismissed from the squad following the 2-0 victory over Nigeria in their opening match, reportedly said: "Thank you, but I did not play in Russia." Coach Zlatko Dalic sent the AC Milan forward home when, warming up to be a second-half substitute, he told him he was not able to play...
Reuters

Portland Timbers withdraw protest over USOC defeat to LAFC - U.S. Soccer

1 day ago
LAFC remain unbeaten at home while Portland have yet to lose in 12 consecutive MLS games following their scoreless draw at Banc of California Stadium. The U.S. Soccer Federation has announced that the Portland Timbers have withdrawn their protest of Wednesday's U.S. Open Cup quarterfinal defeat to Los Angeles FC, clearing the way for the first-year expansion team to play in the semifinals. The Timbers had filed the protest shortly after Wednesday's 3-2 loss, alleging that LAFC had used too many foreign players. USOC rules allow professional teams to use no more than five foreign players in the 18-man matchday squad. LAFC used at least seven players...
Jeff Carlisle

Chippa United sign Morrison, Matlaba, Sangweni from Orlando Pirates

1 day 1 hour ago
Orlando Pirates have agreed the transfer of three players to Premier Soccer League rivals Chippa United, including last season's captain Thabo Matlaba and Ghanaian striker Bernard Morrison. Midfielder Thamsanqa Sangweni is the third player headed for Port Elizabeth after spending just a season with Pirates having been sold by Chippa ahead of the last campaign. "All three players are highly talented and will add value to this young side," Chippa owner Siviwe Mpengesi said in a statement on Friday. The...
Nick Said

World Cup stewards will be punished after final disrupted by pitch invaders

1 day 1 hour ago
The FC guys answer your tweets about the controversies in the World Cup final, Paul Pogba's performance and where the 2018 World Cup ranks all time. Croatia's World Cup squad returned home to huge crowds following their run to the final in Russia. Croatia's World Cup team returned to a heroes' welcome at Zagreb airport following their 4-2 defeat to France in the World Cup final in Moscow. Syrian troops and residents have a bit of peace watching the World Cup final as their lives slowly return to normal. Croatia fell short in their first World Cup final, but the FC crew explain what made the Vatreni's run so impressive. The chief organiser of Russia's World Cup says stewards will be punished after protesters ran onto the pitch during the final. Organising committee CEO Alexei Sorokin told Russia's Sport Express newspaper "we will make [the stewards] ashamed" after four members of the Pussy Riot protest group and punk band ran onto the pitch dressed as police officers. The game was briefly stopped as stewards chased the protesters, one of whom shared a high-five with France's star forward Kylian Mbappe. Sorokin...
Associated Press

Vinicius Junior ready to fight for Real Madrid first-team place

1 day 1 hour ago
ESPN FC's La Liga correspondent Sid Lowe explains what it will take for Gareth Bale to seize the opportunity left by Cristiano Ronaldo's departure. La Liga ambassador Patrick Kluivert discusses the void left by Cristiano Ronaldo following his departure from Real Madrid to join Juventus. After he is unveiled as a Juventus player following his move from Real Madrid, ESPN takes a look at how Cristiano Ronaldo's move to Turin unfolded. Cristiano Ronaldo leaves Real Madrid for quite an expensive fee, but the FC guys feel everyone involved in the transfer comes out a winner. Vinicius Junior has said he is ready to fight for a place in the Real Madrid first team and will work hard to adapt as quickly as possible. Vinicius joined up with Madrid for preseason training, with FIFA rules meaning he had to wait until he was 18 before a €45 million transfer, agreed last summer with Flamengo, could go through. Madrid were reported to be considering loaning him out next season, but he said he expected to remain at the club. "I am staying at Real Madrid with the first team,"...
Dermot Corrigan, Real Madrid correspondent

Roma president given Champions League ban after referee comments

1 day 1 hour ago
Former Barcelona star and current La Liga ambassador Patrick Kluivert shares his thoughts on his son Justin's move from Ajax to Roma. Liverpool's record bid for Roma goalkeeper Alisson was too good to refuse, according to AS Roma's director of football. UEFA has imposed a three-month Champions League ban on Roma president James Pallotta for his critical comments about referee decisions after the team's semifinal defeat to Liverpool in May. UEFA said the American official is suspended "from carrying out his function," including communicating with players or coaches during the game. Pallotta also cannot enter the dressing room or tunnel before or during games. The ban will start with Roma's first Champions League game, on Sept. 18 or 19, and will...
Associated Press

Argentina got it wrong with Jorge Sampaoli, now they have time to get it right

1 day 2 hours ago
ESPN FC's Shaka Hislop recaps France's thrilling 4-3 win over Argentina and thinks major changes are needed for the South American side. The FC panel put Argentina's World Cup exit into context and how it affects Lionel Messi's claim to be the greatest player of all time. ESPN FC's Shaka Hislop thinks Lionel Messi will walk away from Argentina after their 4-3 World Cup defeat to France. ESPN's Dalton Cara captures the emotions of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, whose World Cup dreams ended on the same day. The guys respond to your tweets about Brazil-Mexico, Simeone for Argentina, Uruguay's World Cup chances and Mbappe's performance against Cavani's. Now that Jorge Sampaoli's time as coach of Argentina has come to an end, more details are starting to emerge about the chaos in the camp during the World Cup. It is clear there was a complete breakdown of trust. Following Argentina's second match, a dismal 3-0 defeat to Croatia, the players, led by Javier Mascherano and Lionel Messi, reportedly forced a meeting where they made their grievances known; they had no faith in the coach, in his idea of play and even in his excessively nervous behaviour. It...
Tim Vickery

Atlanta vs. D.C. is a clash of styles on the field and in the front office

1 day 2 hours ago
Check out every goal from Week 20 in MLS, including Paul Arriola's big night at D.C.'s new home and Dom Dwyer helping Orlando City end its slump. Saturday afternoon's battle of the Uniteds at Mercedes-Benz Stadium is being marketed around its stars: new D.C. forward Wayne Rooney on one side, Atlanta's attacking duo of Josef Martinez and Miguel Almiron on the other. Normally, this is an oversimplification. This isn't basketball; there is a limit to how much an individual can impact a game (see the fates of Argentina and Portugal at the recently completed World Cup). In the case of Atlanta United's match against D.C. United, though, there...
Matt Pentz, U.S. soccer writer
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59 minutes 59 seconds ago
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