Football

Bengaluru: Football craze seems to be catching up in Bengaluru. An indication of the fever is the growing number of clubs in the city. Sharan Parikh, CEO of South United FC, says the sport has been attracting underprivileged kids, who are now getting exposed to major tournaments, a trend, Parikh feels, will bring about a change in the sporting culture. South United FC has 24 players out of which 17 are from areas such as Austin Town, Ejipura, Koramangala, Bommasandra.

Chennai: I-League football tournament defending champions Bengaluru FC will don pink jerseys commemorating the International Women's Day when they take on Chennai City FC in a 13th round tie here at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium on Wednesday. "In our hearts, on our minds and on our sleeves. Today and every day, @bengalurufc celebrates the women in our lives. #IWD2017 #WomensDay," the club's official handle tweeted with a picture of captain Sunil Chhetri.

Rio de Janeiro: Former Arsenal star Gilberto Silva has said it is time for the London football club to part ways with long-time chief coach Arsene Wenger. Calls for Wenger to step down have grown louder after Arsenal's 1-3 loss to Liverpool on Saturday, a result that left the Gunners fifth in the English Premier League (EPL) standings, reports Xinhua news agency. "I feel that the time has come," Gilberto was quoted as saying by Sambafoot on Monday.

Ludhiana: High-flying Minerva Punjab FC will look to continue their six-match unbeaten run when they take on struggling defending champions Bengaluru FC in an I-League football game at the Guru Nanak Stadium here on Sunday. Minerva, who shared spoils when the two sides last met in Bengaluru, have not lost in the last six games while their rivals are yet to register a win in their last seven encounters.

Buenos Aires: Five-time FIFA Ballon d'Or winner Lionel Messi will lead a 26-member Argentina football squad for their 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers against Chile and Bolivia later this month. Juventus striker Gonzalo Higuain, Manchester City forward Sergio Aguero, Paris Saint-Germain winger Angel Di Maria and Messi's Barcelona teammate Javier Mascherano were also named by Albiceleste coach Edgardo Bauza on Friday, reports Xinhua news agency.

Shijiazhuang (China): Coach Manuel Pelligrini on Friday said he hopes to help Chinese football club Hebei China Fortune win a seat in the AFC Champions League in 2018, as he heads to Hebei for his first complete season. His team met in early February in the southern Spanish city of Marbella for practice focusing on skill and tactics after a series of signings of homegrown players, including former La Liga defender Zhang Chengdong and Chinese national team midfielder Yin Hongbo, reports Xinhua.

Manchester: Manchester United coach Jose Mourinho has said that clubs in the English Premier League football this season are more defensive and looking to counter attack. He said this after winning 3-0 over defending champions Leicester City.

Minas Gerais: Brazil football great Pele has claimed that Barcelona star striker Neymar is 'technically way better' that Real Madrid talisman and four-time Ballon d'or winner Cristiano Ronaldo. Ronaldo was named the Ballon d'Or winner for the fourth time in 2016. He also bagged the Men's Player of the Year award from FIFA after guiding Real Madrid to Champions League victory and Portugal to Euro 2016 glory. Despite Ronaldo's recent success and impressive career, Pele believes the Portugal star has only one advantage over Neymar i.e his aerial power.

Bengaluru: I-League football champions Bengaluru FC on Friday loaned Honduran striker Roby Norales to second division side Ozone FC till the end of the season. The 26-year-old joined Bengaluru a game into the I-League season. But he failed to fit into the plans of coach Albert Roca, prompting the club to trigger a move to fellow-Bengaluru side Ozone FC. Norales scored on his BFC debut against Chennai City FC. He replaced Ozone striker Cornell Glenn who suffered a fractured arm, ruling him out for the rest of the club's campaign.

London: Manchester City beat West Ham United 4-0 on Wednesday in the English Premier League, while Manchester United salvaged a goal-less draw against Hull City. With this win, Manchester City drew level with fourth-place Liverpool in the EPL standings. Now, both teams are 10 points below table leader Chelsea. For Manchester City, the goal scorers were Gabriel Jesus, Kevin De Bruyne, David Silva and Yaya Toure

Amman: Bengaluru FC bowed out of the running for a place in the group stages of the 2017 AFC Champions League, after a 1-2 loss to Jordanian champions Al-Wehdat at the King Abdullah International Stadium here on Tuesday. Skipper Sunil Chhetri scored what was to be a consolation for Bengaluru after goals from Ahmed Wridat and Baha Faisal gave Wehdat a 2-0 lead. 

Barcelona: Barcelona remained on course of clinching this season's Copa del Rey title as they booked their place in the semi-finals of the tournament after claiming an aggregated 6-2 win over Real Sociedad at Camp Nou here on Friday. Luis Enrique's side, which were leading 1-0 from the first leg, went on to claim a thumping 5-2 win over Sociedad in their second leg of the quarter-final to reach the last-four for the seventh straight season.

Manivanan

Bengaluru: In a big honour for Seven South United FC, seven of its players have been selected to represent Karnataka in the 71st Santosh Trophy 2017.  Rushi Anto, Shanthosh Kumar, N. Solaimalai, Senthil Kumar, Magesh Selva, R. Subhash, and Keith Raymond will represent the state in the upcoming tournament to be held between Jan 5 and Jan 9 in Kerala. Manivannan, who has represented Karnataka for the Santhosh Trophy in 2014-15 and 2015-16, has been chosen for the standby team, while N Solaimalai has been chosen as the vice-captain of the team. 

New Delhi: Football is popular among the youth of the northeast, which has given the country some of its best players and they have brought laurels to the country. The Northeast Tamchon Football Tournament, one of the most coveted northeast football tournaments, concluded recently in Delhi, and drew football fans from the region living in the city. The tournament also showcased the region's football skills and their passion for the game.

Zurich: World football's governing body on Friday named perennial rivals Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann as the final three nominees for The Best Mens Player Award. FIFA pruned a list of 23 names down to the elite trio after voting by captains and coaches of national teams, select members of the media and fans on fifa.com. The winner will be crowned on January 9.

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