Over the years we have seen some players emerge and shine at certain clubs only to leave the said clubs in search of greener pastures. Well, the grass isn’t always greener on the other side and after enduring unsuccessful spells elsewhere, these prodigal sons eventually return to their parent clubs. Mario Goetze is the latest player to complete his return to Dortmund after an unsuccessful stint at Bayern. Some of the other players can be seen below. 1. Nuri Sahin The Turkish midfielder was given his chance on the big stage by Dortmund and he rose through the ranks in a spectacular fashion. He was sent out on loan to Dutch side Feyenoord to continue his development. He returned to Dortmund in 2009 and became a pivotal member of the Dortmund team eventually becoming captain of the side. He was voted Bundesliga Player Of The Year in 2011 and moved to Spanish giants Real Madrid immediately after the end of the season. Injuries and lack of game time hampered his time at Madrid. He fell down the pecking order as a result and secured a loan move to Liverpool in 2012 to help revive his career. His move to England was unsuccessful as injuries made it difficult for him to adjust to his new surroundings. His contract with Liverpool was terminated in January 2013 and he was once again reunited with Jurgen Klopp at Dortmund. He admitted he was never hppy at both Real adn Liverpool and was glad to be back home at the Signal Iduna. 2.Steven Pienaar Pienaar became a hit at Everton under manager David Moyes. He was unstoppable on the flanks for Everton and enjoyed a successful spell with the Merseyside club. His performances in the 2009/10 season earned him the Everton Player Of The Year award and cult hero status with the Goodison faithful. He attracted interest from both Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur and in January 2011, he switched to Spurs. Injuries stalled his progress at Spurs and he made only ten appearances. He returned to Everton in January 2012 on a six-month deal which was made permanent in July 2012. 3.Shinji Kagawa The diminutive Japanese midfielder rose to prominence in German with Borussia Dortmund. His standout season was the 2011/12, Dortmund’s title winning season. The attacking midfielder was at the hub of the success and his displays inadvertently attracted interest from Europe’s big boys. He was signed by Sir Alex Ferguson in the Scot’s last season in management. Kagawa became the first Asian player to win the Premier League and showed glimpses of his former self in some eye-catching displays. His second season in England was less successful as he struggled to fit into David Moyes’ side that finished seventh in the League table. His former manager, Jurgen Klopp, went on record to say that Kagawa deserved better than the few chances he was being given by Moyes. In August 2014, he returned to Dortmund and could not hide his relief with ending his English nightmare. 4.Kaka After six seasons of inspirational performances for the Rossoneri, Kaka coud not resist the tempting offer Real Madrid offered him. He was still in the prime of his career and Fiorentino Perez was bent on on making him part of his‘galactio‘ project. Kaka eventually joined Madrid on a six-year deal for a then world record fee. His move to Madrid seemed perfect and he had all the conditions to be successful. This was not the case however as he suffered a string of successive which curtailed his adjustment to his new surroundings. He featured for Madrid 120 times and won three trophies in the process. He missed a crucial penalty in the semi-final Champions League tie against eventual winners Bayern. Kaka impressed on certain occasions but he failed to produce the levels of excellence and consistency he had shown throughout his career. The great Kaka had become a bit part of Madrid’s plans and he expressed his desire to leave the club after four years in Spain. He secured a move to his former employers Milan and spent two years with the club that gave him his European chance.
Over the years we have seen some players emerge and shine at certain clubs only to leave the said clubs in search of greener pastures. Well, the grass isn’t always greener on the other side and after enduring unsuccessful spells elsewhere, these prodigal sons eventually return to their parent clubs. Mario Goetze is the latest player to complete his return to Dortmund after an unsuccessful stint at Bayern. Some of the other players can be seen below.
1. Nuri Sahin
The Turkish midfielder was given his chance on the big stage by Dortmund and he rose through the ranks in a spectacular fashion. He was sent out on loan to Dutch side Feyenoord to continue his development. He returned to Dortmund in 2009 and became a pivotal member of the Dortmund team eventually becoming captain of the side. He was voted Bundesliga Player Of The Year in 2011 and moved to Spanish giants Real Madrid immediately after the end of the season.
Injuries and lack of game time hampered his time at Madrid. He fell down the pecking order as a result and secured a loan move to Liverpool in 2012 to help revive his career. His move to England was unsuccessful as injuries made it difficult for him to adjust to his new surroundings. His contract with Liverpool was terminated in January 2013 and he was once again reunited with Jurgen Klopp at Dortmund. He admitted he was never hppy at both Real adn Liverpool and was glad to be back home at the Signal Iduna.
Pienaar became a hit at Everton under manager David Moyes. He was unstoppable on the flanks for Everton and enjoyed a successful spell with the Merseyside club.
His performances in the 2009/10 season earned him the Everton Player Of The Year award and cult hero status with the Goodison faithful.
He attracted interest from both Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur and in January 2011, he switched to Spurs. Injuries stalled his progress at Spurs and he made only ten appearances. He returned to Everton in January 2012 on a six-month deal which was made permanent in July 2012.
The diminutive Japanese midfielder rose to prominence in German with Borussia Dortmund. His standout season was the 2011/12, Dortmund’s title winning season. The attacking midfielder was at the hub of the success and his displays inadvertently attracted interest from Europe’s big boys. He was signed by Sir Alex Ferguson in the Scot’s last season in management. Kagawa became the first Asian player to win the Premier League and showed glimpses of his former self in some eye-catching displays.
His second season in England was less successful as he struggled to fit into David Moyes’ side that finished seventh in the League table. His former manager, Jurgen Klopp, went on record to say that Kagawa deserved better than the few chances he was being given by Moyes. In August 2014, he returned to Dortmund and could not hide his relief with ending his English nightmare.
After six seasons of inspirational performances for the Rossoneri, Kaka coud not resist the tempting offer Real Madrid offered him. He was still in the prime of his career and Fiorentino Perez was bent on on making him part of his‘galactio‘ project. Kaka eventually joined Madrid on a six-year deal for a then world record fee. His move to Madrid seemed perfect and he had all the conditions to be successful.
This was not the case however as he suffered a string of successive which curtailed his adjustment to his new surroundings. He featured for Madrid 120 times and won three trophies in the process. He missed a crucial penalty in the semi-final Champions League tie against eventual winners Bayern. Kaka impressed on certain occasions but he failed to produce the levels of excellence and consistency he had shown throughout his career.
The great Kaka had become a bit part of Madrid’s plans and he expressed his desire to leave the club after four years in Spain. He secured a move to his former employers Milan and spent two years with the club that gave him his European chance.]]>
The 1977 Open Championship contested at Turnberry Golf Club is known as the ‘Duel in the Sun’ after the incredible performance by Jack Nicklaus and, the eventual winner, Tom Watson. This year’s Open Championship displayed a level of golf that has equaled, if not bettered, that of which took place almost 40 years ago.
Sweden’s Henrik Stenson, and the U.S.A.’s Phil Mickelson played to such a high level of golf, at Royal Troon, this year, that when the final round concluded the runner-up, Mickelson, was three shots behind Stenson, but was eleven better than third place, fellow American, J.B. Holmes. Stenson’s record tying final round of 63, was the first in a
final round of major to win, since World Golf Hall of Famer, turned broadcaster, Johnny Miller did it in the 1973 U.S. Open at Oakmont. Not to mention that Stenson’s cumulative score of -20 for the championship ties the lowest overall score in any major, ever. Stenson’s performance was nearly flawless, and extremely memorable to any who witnessed it. Stenson, at 40 years old, had been dubbed by the media, ‘One of the best to not win a major’, along with other notable players: Rickie Fowler, Sergio Garcia and Lee Westwood. However, with his immaculate performance at Royal Troon this year, Stenson joins Danny Willet and Dustin Johnson as golfers to obtain their inaugural major this season.
What may be lost under Stenson’s glory, however, was the quality of golf perpetrated by fan favourite, Phil Mickelson. Mickelson’s opening 63, featuring a agonizing lip-out on the eighteenth hole, tied the lowest round in major championship history. ‘Lefty’ backed that up with solid rounds of 69 and 70 to get him into the final pairing with Stenson. Phil did not disappoint on Sunday either. Matching Stenson shot for shot, birdie for birdie, until Stenson’s putter found another level. Phil finished with a closing 65, the second lowest round of the day, behind only Stenson’s 63, and Phil’s lowest round on the final day of major, in his long, impressive career.
Royal Troon provided a fine test of golf to the field in the 146th Open Championship. Only 17 players out of a field that consisted of over 150 golfers finished under par, yet both Stenson, and Mickelson put on an absolute clinic. It was a nail biter until the very finish, but Stenson’s incredibly consistent ball striking paired with his wizardry with the putter made him uncatchable, even for Phil Mickelson, who played one of the best final rounds in Open Championship history.]]>
” You’re always pleased to be in Victory Lane,” said the 44-year-old Kenseth, who won for the second straight time at the 1.058-mile flat track and for the 38th time in his career. “The farther down the road you get, the better they feel for sure. Thanks to everybody at Joe Gibbs Racing — I’ve said it a million times, but I’m blessed with this opportunity to be over here with the guys I get to work with…
Stewart has a win this season and needs to secure a spot in the top 30 in points to clinch a spot in the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship in his final season. He inched from 30th to 28th in points.
“Everyone wants this last year to be good,” Stewart said. “Sonoma, I think really helped relax everybody.”
For a good chunk of the total 301 laps it looked to be a battle between Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. Truex managed to wrestle his way past in his Furniture Row Racing Toyota and the lead alternated between the two for a while.Truex had gearshift issues in the closing stages of the race, which left him permanently stuck in fourth gear.
Jimmie Johnson had started the race from pole position but lost the lead to Kyle Busch on the third lap.Greg Biffle completed the top five, ahead of Jamie McMurray.There were seven cautions overall and four of these were during the final 40 laps.
Alex Bowman performed well as Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s replacement in the Hendrick Motorsports No. 88 Chevrolet. He climbed into the top 10 in the race’s second half, reaching eighth, but finished 26th (on the lead lap) after a blown tire sent his car slamming into the wall on lap 273.sending Bowman into the outside wall. Bowman was still able to stay on the lead lap,regardless.]]>
We all thought the lure to play in the Champions League was hard to resist but these players have shown otherwise.
1. N’Golo Kante
The French midfielder enjoyed a formidable debut season in the Premier League. He was pivotal in the Foxes’ title charge and was named in the PFA Team Of The Season. He also played a part as France made their way to the finals of the European Championship.
It was rumored he wanted a move away from the Premier League champions and he has finally had his way. In a transfer taking him to West London, Leicester will receive around £ 30 million from Chelsea for the energetic midfielder’s services.
His move comes at a cost though, Chelsea endured a horrendous 2015/16 season and will play no part in European football. Kante will have to wait a bit longer for his Champions League debut.
2. Zlatan Ibrahimovic
The big Swede had a very productive season for PSG. He once again finished as top scorer for his club as he led them to another League title. Ibrahimovic refused to renew his contract with the Paris outfit and signed for Manchester United on a free transfer. Zlatan has played Champions League football since 2004 but will have to settle for the Europa League this time around.
The Armenian finished with the most assists in the Bundesliga last season. He scored 23 goals in the process as Dortmund finished second behind Bayern Munich. His performances did not go unnoticed and Jose Mourinho quickly moved to secure the services of the gifted playmaker. Mkhitaryan will miss out on Champions League however with United finishing outside the Champions League places last season.
Hojbjerg spent four seasons at Bayern Munich amassing 61 appearances in the process. He was not able to nail down a starting spot in Munich and spent his last season on loan at Schalke 04. He has secured a move to Southampton in search of first team football and will miss out on Champions League football in the 2016/17 season
5. Eric Bailly
Bailly was Mourinho’s fisrt signing after he took over the reigns as Manchester United boss. Strength and a physical presence are his strongest quality and he will be an important part of Mourinho’s attempt to help United claim the Premier League title. He is yet to taste Champions League football from his time in Spain with Villareal and the will have to wait a bit longer. Villareal are in the play-offs for a place in the group stage of the Champions League
Banega was an integral part of Unai Emery’s side that conquered the Europa League for a third consecutive time. However after three seasons, he has moved to Inter. Roberto Mancini’s men narrowly missed out on the Champions League places and now the Argentine must make do with being absent from the showpiece event.]]>
When Tassotti joined A.c Milan in 1980, Arrigo Sacchi was presented with a major headache. He was torn between playing the more experienced right full-back ahead of the blossoming talent that was Paolo Maldini. Maldini had risen through the ranks at the Rossoneri and was already touted as the next big thing to hit the club.
He showed great experience and made the right fullback position in the youth teams his own. Due to his versatility shown even in his early years, Maldini allowed Sacchi to make a decision that would go on to define Maldini’s entire career. Playing a right-footed defender in the left full-back position was something that was done by coaches only out of necessity.
The absence of the already established left-back caused coaches to play right-footed players in that position, a decision which often backfired. Paul Breitner, Ruud Krol and Brehme all played sporadically in that role but none of them was able to make the position truly his. Maldini would go on to make history by making the position his own and inspiring the next generation of defenders to try to emulate his outstanding feats in a position that was believed to be for only left footed players.
Over the years we have seen more and more players try to imitate Maldini. Lahm, Zambrotta, Zanetti and Azpilicueta have continued in Maldini’s legacy recent times. These are the players that have also excelled and have become very efficient in their sides. They are some of the most consistent players and rarely make a mistake. What then makes these players who play out of position excel?
When Maldini begun his playing career, wingers at that time were typical out-and-out wingers. Wingers at that time were speedsters who could gallop forward from deep positions and deliver crosses for their attackers to finish off. That is what makes Maldini’s accomplishments all the more impressive. Wingers would always aim for the by-line and would force Paolo to defend them on his left side which was not his stronger side but his ambidexterity allowed him to cope easily with their threat. In recent times however, wingers have taken a new approach.
Players on the left and right wings are no longer runners alone, they are creative players who cut-in infield any opportunity they get.This makes the work of the modern day right-footed left-back quite simple. As wingers cut-in, the fullbacks get to defend them on their right side which is their stronger side. They can tackle the wingers quite comfortably and the danger of giving away fouls is reduced since the co-ordination on their right side is better. The only negative is that going forward these fullbacks offer very little.
Cesar Azpilicueta exemplifies this more than anyone. Even when he gets into promising positions in the opponent’s half, he is unable to deliver crosses unless he moves the ball to his right side. This makes him predictable and easy to defend. Right-footed left backs are fast becoming popular in football and more and more coaches are employing Sacchi’s master plan.
In the ongoing Euros, Croatia, Poland and Ukraine have adopted this idea and opposing wingers are finding it difficult to exploit the left flank of these teams. Who knows, maybe left-footed right backs will also begin to emerge as more right-footed left backs continue to perform at the highest level.]]>
Golf has returned to the Olympics for the first time since 1904, where Canadian, George Lyon, took home the gold medal. Golf’s long awaited return to the pinnacle of sports competitions has sparked a debate as to whether the Olympics should or will be considered golf’s ‘fifth major’.
Due to recent withdrawals by many of the world’s top players, most notably: Jordan Spieth, Jason Day, Dustin Johnson, and Rory McIlroy, golf in the Olympics has had a rough start pertaining to attracting world renown players in an effort to ‘grow the game’. McIlroy going as far as to say that he would watch the olympics but, not golf, only the “…ones that matter.”
The obvious absence of the game’s top players not only hinder the potential of the field but also demote the importance of the Olympics to one less than that of the four coveted major championships. Concerning the withdrawals, players have cited their reasons as being the Zika virus, scheduling conflict, and other excuses in an effort to not make the trip to Rio to compete in the event in which other athletes train impeccably hard and strive just for an opportunity to represent their country and the chance to take home a medal.
Since, there is no prize money available to the professional, high profile golfers, the Zika virus provides an easy out to athletes who have no real interest in competing in the Olympics. Without some incentive to athletes who are used to large purses and sponsor’s endorsements, golf in the Olympics will feature a lacklustre field and lower ratings, thus prohibiting it from becoming golf’s ‘fifth major’.
All four of golf’s penultimate championships have an aura about them in which the Olympics cannot replicate. The traditional nature of these tournaments, (the newest major being ‘The Masters’ which began in 1934) create an immediate place in history for whoever should be so lucky to win one.
No modern day professional golfers dreamt of winning an Olympic gold medal, simply for the fact that golf was not played in the Olympics. Any golfer alive today would much rather slip on a green jacket, or hoist the Claret Jug, or Wanamaker Trophy than be awarded the gold medal.
The lack of history surrounding golf’s rebirth in the Olympics is just another factor into why it should not be considered a ‘fifth major’.
In general, not only is there a lack of the game’s top players competing in golf’s highly anticipated comeback to the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, but also the lack of historical significance in the Olympics makes the event less appealing to players and fans alike.The atmosphere will not even be close to that attained by each and every of the four majors.
For all of these reasons, and more, the Olympics should not be considered golf’s ‘fifth major’.]]>
Harry Redknapp has been in the news recently. When asked by bookies Betsafe his views on the potential mega bucks deal taking Pogba to Manchester United, Harry Redknapp had this to say, ‘I think pride would stop mefrom paying a player 100 million when we gave him away. He’s a great player, there’s no doubt about that, but I wouldn’t swap him for Dele Alli. ‘If you asked me, Dele Alli or Pogba – who do you want?
I’m taking Dele Alli in the long term.’ Quite a bold statement from the former Spurs manager. Harry however is not new to identifying talent at an early stage when no one else but he can. During his time with West Ham, he made a bold declaration regarding his nephew Frank Lampard which turned out to be spot on almost two decades after he passed that remark. That is why we want to compare the two youngsters and see whether Uncle Harry has a point.
Both Alli and Pogba had a stellar 2015/16 season. The season happened to be Alli’s breakout season in a Spurs team that finished third in the Premier League. Pogba ended another impressive season with the league and cup double with Juventus.
What Do The Stats Say?
Pogba played at total of 3019 minutes and scored nine goals in all competitions for Juventus and laid on another 12 goals for his teammates. Dele Alli scored scored ten goals and recorded nine assists in 2482 minutes for Spurs. Pogba attempted 3.5 shots per match while Alli had 2.2.
Paul Pogba completed 83.4% of the passes he attempted and was voted man of the match eight times during the season. The Frenchman attempted 0.3 through balls per game and also made 43.5 passes in each game he played. Alli had a lower pass completion rate of 75.9, attempted 32.9 passes per game and attempted 0.2 through balls per game. He was voted man of the match only twice.
Dele Alli attempted 0.9 dribbles which was lower than Pogba’s tally of 2.9. Pogba made 2.2 tackles, 2.5 fouls and 1.3 interceptions collecting ten yellow cards in the process. Alli collected seven yellow cards though he made the same number of tackles as Pogba. He however made 1.8 interceptions and 1.5 fouls per game.
Alli covered 11.8 km of pitch in every match he played while Pogba run 11.5 km.
Both players had an uninspiring Euros. Though France made it to the final, Pogba failed to live up to the expectations placed on him. Dele Alli is yet to play in the final of a major event but Pogba has two under his belt including the loss against Barcelona in the 2014 Champions League final.
Though Alli is younger than his French compatriot, the statistics tilt in Pogba’s favor. Manchester United know what they have seen hence their interest in the highly sought after midfielder. Harry Redknapp is right when he says Alli is a bright talent but at the moment, even with his price tag, Manchester United will be better of with Pogba than with the English midfielder.]]>
The date was September 12, 2009. Manchester United vs Tottenham Hotspur. The scoreline showed a 3-1 victory for United at Old Trafford. Another game. Another loss. The losing streak for this talented left back was on the rise. After the match Sir Alex met, the then manager of Spurs, Harry Redknapp about this 20 year old lad’s odd 24 games losing streak. Twenty four appearances for the club and he had never finished on the winning side. ‘I don’t know if you can play him now,’ said Ferguson. He felt may be the boy was jinxed or cursed.
“Alex was big on superstitions and I am still not sure to this day whether he was joking or not, but it was clearly a huge topic.” said Harry in an interview during EURO 2016. I am no footballer, but I can somewhat imagine the immense pressure this young guy would’ve been going through. The whole footballing world was talking about him, but not how good he was or how he played but it was about how his presence might have turned into an ill omen for the club. When the blame for every game that goes wrong falls on your shoulder, it’s tough. He had come with a reputation of being a set piece specialist and a pacey left back at a cost of around nine million pounds. But injuries and then that spell of badluck had made many tag this lad as a failed transfer. But he had something else in mind. Redknapp unlike the others where pretty adamant about the qualities of this youngster and to some extent even short on options. He had to change the narrative around Bale.
Two weeks later, Tottenham were leading Burnley 4-0 at White Hart Lane when Redknapp introduced him as an 85th-minute substitute for Aaron Lennon. Finally, his run of misfortune was over as Robbie Keane added another one to make the scoreline 5-0. After a run of 24 games of misforture, curse or jinx he had finally tasted victory. Redknaff kept reinforcing the pattern to the get the monkey of this youngster’s back. He finally tasted victory for the first time as a starter in a league game in the 2–0 win over London rivals Fulham on 26 January 2010. Things slowly started getting better. The 20 year old crept his way upwards from the rock bottom he had hit. But still, “He had to get tougher,” Redknapp said. “That was his main problem. He was one of those players who if he got a little knock or niggle in training, he couldn’t shrug it off. That becomes very frustrating for a manager. In the end you’d think, leave him, let him get on with it, he’s soft.” He worked hard, on his fitness, his physique. “He put in the work, he began to stand up for himself”. The output of his hardwork was evident. He was named the Barclays Player of the month for April 2010 with goal in North London Derby against Arsenal and a ‘Man of the match’ performance against eventual champions Chelsea. He was progressing thick and fast. Turning out to be the talent that he was supposed to be.
Then on 20th October 2010, San Siro happened. Tottenham were 4-0 down and a player less within the first 35 minutes of the game against Inter. And then Gareth BALE happened. An incredi-Bale turn of events. The 21 year old Welshman registered his first senior hattrick against the then European Champions. It was night to remember. The 21-year-old Wales international ran almost 50 yards down the left before firing an angled shot past Julio Cesar for a sensational first goal. It remained 4-1 until the final two minutes, when Bale left Zanetti chasing shadows and scored an almost identical second. And the winger kept alive what had seemed an impossible task when he was well positioned on the left of the area to rifle in his hat-trick. But, what could have been the most incredible comeback in the history of football just fell short. But the left back from Welsh had made his mark.
Then in the return leg of that fixture against Inter Milan, the Welsh wizard again created havoc. Maicon was supposed to be the best right back then. But the 21 year old left back, left him chasing shadows through out the match. By the end of the match Maicon must have been very familiar with the jersey number at the back of Gareth’s shirt. Courtesy the Welsh wizard Spurs won the match 3-1. He was awarded the “Man of the Match’ for his performance and was clearly showing signs of the world class player he was yet to become. April 2011, Bale was honoured with the PFA Player of the Year award. With the performances the accolades and prizes were filling his trophy cabinet.
On 28 April 2013, the Welshman won both the PFA Players’ Player of the Year and Young Player of the Year after lighting up the Premier League stage in the 2012–13 season. A week later, on 2 May 2013, he was awarded the FWA (Football Writer’s Association) Player of the Year Award, making Bale one of only two players who have won all three in the same season, the other being Cristiano Ronaldo, who won them in 2007. The uncanny similarity between them, I falling in love yet again. Going through his career, documentaries, vines just hoping and praying that he would join our Mecca.
September 1st, 2013- Every prayer was answered. Gareth Bale was Real Madrid bound. I was ecstatic, without limits, just happy. I can barely explain now. The love affair continued. As if it was written in the stars. Gareth Bale had joined Real Madrid for a world record transfer fee of 100.8 million Euros. He was going to sport the number 11 jersey. But with that huge transfer fee came the doubters. I knew it was bound to happen. Even Ronaldo faced it. But I knew him. I knew he was a fighter, he wouldn’t go down without a fight. And fight he did.
The first half of his first season, with injuries and the new conditions were mediocre to say the least. On his first El Classico debut he came on as a substitute only to draw some media criticism. But soon he was up and running with world class performances against the likes of Sevilla, Rayo Vallecano, Galatasaray sending his doubters back into the closet. With each passing day making me feel an inch prouder.
16th April, 2014 . It was two nights before my birthday, and all I had wished for was a Copa Del Rey final victory in an El Classico. But without Cristiano it was a tough climb. It had to be HIM. The warrior I had been worshipping, and his time was now. And he proved it WAS. Five minutes to go before the end of regular time, the game was drawn level at 1-1 and then magic happened. A Barça attack broke down deep in Madrid territory and the ball was quickly slipped to Bale, who, from the half-way line, hurtled forward, playing the ball past Bartra, almost being barged out of the pitch and running on to it again and into the box. As Pinto came out to meet him, he kept his composure and slid the ball under him and into the net! It was majestic. Tears and joy knew no bound for me. He had proved every one wrong, every one who asked me “Why Bale?”.
24th May 2014 – Another historic night for every Madridista around the world, and more so for me, as Love, had score a 110th minute goal to seal the La Decima. It was majestic. Every doubters had turned into fans now. And somewhere in Kolkata a boy was basking in the glory of idol, as if it was his. He was the first Welsh player to score in a European Cup/Champions League final. Records were slowly but steadily being made. He finished his debut season with 22 goals and 16 assists. Statistics to be appreciated keeping in mid it was his first season.
Then unfolded the 2014/15 season. Another final. This time of UEFA Super Cup and again he delivered. But from then on injury filled, lacklustured performances, I was scared what it was heading to. The El Classico on 23rd March 2015 was a bitter result for the team. And more memorable for the activities from some of the fellow Madridistas after the match. Bale’s car was attacked. Clearly Madridistas weren’t happy and two of them stoned Bale’s car after the match. I saw the video. I was sad, ashamed. But I had tears when I noticed Bale had no idea what those offenders had in mind. He saw them, and was trying to wave at them, when the assaulted his bentley. That was a disgustful event. But I knew if anyone could answer them it was the warrior that I had seen back in Spurs. Rising up from the low or rather lowest. Many ask me, “ Why all of a sudden Bale?”. I tell them that he, he wasn’t a poster boy of a major european club. He had the taste of success and the next moment he was thrashed into the rock bottom of failure. But he stood up. Every time those doubters thought he wouldn’t, he DID. Football is somewhere he attracted me, but at personal level, as an idol, an inspiration, I feel in love.
Happy 27th Birthday Gareth Frank Bale. You’re an inspiration on and off the field for me. I look up to you Gareth. Every step you take on the field makes me relive the fight you have been through. We all know how that bad patch ended. A “Man of the Match” performance to win the La Undecima. Carrying Wales into and through the EUROs. He has established himself as a man of the finals. Scoring or assisting in every final he has played for Real Madrid. The hairstyle you sport, that man bun, it’s like that of a Samurai, just perfecting your warrior look.
I am proud I could follow you so closely. So kind and humble of a man. A perfect family man and an even more perfect father. Sometimes looking up to a player is just isn’t about football but it’s more than that. It’s the kind of idealogy and characterisation he stands for. Gareth you define a gentleman for me. I don’t want you to know me but just know that someone out there is always proud of everything you do, and when you’re down, he is right there praying those dark cloud pass away. I can’t ever thank you enough for the motivation, inspiration and idol that you’ve been to me.
Once again Happy Birthday, Love.
Thank You for Everything.
Your fan? Nope, worshiper!
I BELIEVE IN YOU!]]>
The 145th Open has burst into life with Phil Mickelson leading the pack after shooting only the second ever 63 round recorded in Royal Troon history.
The American came devastatingly close to the all time course record but missed his birdie putt on the 18th by whiskers.
Soren Kjeldsen, Zach Johnson and Henrik Stenson have all been in fine form sitting just a couple shots behind the overall leader.
After an impressive start putting twice off the green in the opening two rounds, German Martin Kaymer gave away three shots on the 10th and another on a tricky 11th. However, he managed to save par through 12 and 13 to stay at three under par.
Keegan Bradley could have easily caught up with Mickelson after the lone leader made bogey to slip to 10 under, but it was the omens that caught up with Bradley and has since slid to five under.
Andrew Johnston and Justin Rose are currently the performing Brits carding four under and three under par. Rory Mcllroy tees off today at two under par but arch nemesis Jordan Spieth is only two shots behind.
One of the club’s long serving members Colin Montgomerie putted phenomenally during the opening round completing the course for even par.
World number one Jason Day struck a wayward round of 73 and has a lot of work to do to catch up with the leading pack.
Louis Oosthuizen hit the Open’s only hole on one on the 14th, although he could not cease the opportunity finishing at even par. Others have come close, and surely this will not be the last of the tournament.
Weather had been stable on the first day as Mickelson played his heart out, however the second day’s action became affected by the rain as caddies and spectators reached for their brollies.
It remains tight at the top and uncertain who will take home the claret jug.]]>
MMA betting has always been fun, especially if you win the game. However, if you want to be the expert of MMA betting, you will need to excel at every of the bet. The unfortunate part is – even when you seek advice from one of the famous bettor, you will hardly get the secret out of them. So, to master the art of MMA betting, here we have revealed all the secrets that you need to know about MMA betting:
Like any other field, the success of MMA betting is also based on the power of knowledge. In the starting days, you will need to train yourself every day. The earliest you fill this gap, the better it will be to use it in your training. There is a lot of knowledge to take in when you start with the UFC betting. So, practice first and then try to take the big leap.
Believe it or not, embarrassment has constantly given rise to the zeal of learning. In the beginning days of betting, there are chances that you will face the most heartbreaking losses, but this should act only as a source of motivation. Learn from the mistakes you made and compete to prove yourself. This will be the key to your further success.
Victory or loss, it’s all in your head. Betting in front of the masters of the game is never going to be an easy job. Seeing their moves, you might even get confused, but that’s not the right way to proceed. If you yourself don’t trust on your moves, who else will do. You might not know how dangerous a move is until you get into that situation. Moreover, every time you lock yourself in a move, it will warn you of the future moves or you can find a better way to leverage it, thereby elvating your inner confidence.
Whenever you bet on one of the game, you become one of the biggest parts of the game. Whether you win or lose, the challenge made by you makes the game even more interesting. Understanding it at the earliest will simply boost your confidence.
Never assume that just because you have chosen the best fighter, he is not going to lose. There are equal chances of the fighter’s defeat when you bet on him. Sometimes, the underdogs perform better than the master fighters. So, there is always a probability of win and lose when it comes to betting. The key point here to note is never make a judgment based on someone’s loss and victory.
Look into these points closely and master yourself as a professional MMA Bettor. Once, you accept these realities of MMA betting, the further game will automatically turn into an interesting part of your life.]]>