Can Barcelona Find Redemption With Luis Suarez?

From the moment Luis Suarez’s signature graced the pages of his 5-year contract with FC Barcelona, fans have been anxiously anticipating the lift of his ban and his first touch of the ball in an official game, and, as luck would have it, that moment may grace the grounds of the Bernabeu during the first Clasico of the season. But with the pressure mounting the shoulders of the Uruguayan striker, will he be able to live up to the expectations that have already been set so high?


Suarez joined FC Barcelona halfway through the summer transfer season and was immediately targeted as the Catalan’s best new signing. Many believed that his recent controversy during the 2014 World Cup was going to overshadow the spectacular form that he ended his Liverpool career with, however, the opposite has actually been the case. His arrival at the club has restored the fans with a renewed sense of victory, and the knowledge that more titles are in Barcelona’s future.
The Golden Boot winner is an incredibly evolved striker. Never at any point during his time as a professional footballer has he scored less than ten goals in a season. Furthermore, Suarez has topped the goal scoring charts in both the Eredivisie and Premier Leagues with 35 goals in the 2009/10 season and 31 in the 2013/14 season, respectively, the latter of which tied him with Cristiano Ronaldo as the top European goal scorer.
Fortunately for Barcelona, the Uruguayan isn’t simply a striker. His tenacity for penetrating spaces, beating defenders, and creating goal-scoring chances will help him fall right into place within the Blaugrana front line. That, along with his speed and physical presence, will add a new dynamic that los cules are not normally known for.

Yet, with all of this talent at his disposal, Suarez’s true skills lie in his ability to play in any forward position and effectively hit the back of the net from almost any distance.
When all is said and done, Suarez, along with four-time Balon D’Oro winner Messi and Brazilian captain Neymar, will quickly be able to wreak havoc in the La Liga standings, and, possibly more important than winning the league, rival the attacking prowess of Real Madrid’s B.B.C. with a South American N.M.S.
Whatever the outcome, the acquisition of Luis Suarez, Barca’s new number 9, is a move the club, and its fans, will relish for years to come.

By: Edgar Mendoza

Ten Qualities of a Good Youth Soccer/Football Coach


Time for a pop quiz – would you rather your child played on a team where the coach calls the game or practice for weather if there is thunder audible, or keeps the children playing through rain and nearby lightning strikes? How about a coach who offers equal playing time to all players, even though their win-loss record is abysmal, or a coach who only plays the best and leaves the other children on the bench?

Do you think you can tell the difference between an OK coach and a good coach?

Stage Equipe de France Chris Bonzon

Here are ten qualities you can look for:

1. A good coach demonstrates his knowledge of and commitment to physical health and safety. He is experienced in CPR, has a readily available first aid kit with him at all practices and games, and teaches the players about injury treatment and prevention.

2. He teaches and models, always, respectful behavior, fairness and good sportsmanship. He will not be teaching your child to respond to adversary with tantrums or cursing.

3. He demands and receives appropriate sideline behavior from parents. He ignores taunts and insults from abusive parents, and does not let a parent to berate a player, even his own child.

4. He understands gender differences, especially on a mixed-sex team, but does not adhere to stereotypes and allows each player to play to his or her potential. He is sympathetic to an all-female team, especially young teens who tend to be quite emotional.

5. He is patient and calm, and always positive. He leaves his personal life out of the gam, and does not take a bad mood out on his players.

6. He sets realistic and age-appropriate expectations for the players. He neither promises them too much, nor encourages them too little.

7. He makes both practices and games fun, emphasizing the “fun” quality versus winning. While winning is important, and everyone should strive to do their personal best, it is not the sole reason in playing team sports. Actually, studies have shown that “winning” does not even rank in the top 5 reasons when children are asked why they play team sports.

8. He adjusts his advice to suit the each player, and is sensitive to their needs. A good coach understands that a team is made up of individual players, and that some need a great deal of attention while others do not.

9. He actively seeks out team-building opportunities, and includes every player. Such activities can include team parties, fund-raising events like car washes, and special team-only pre-game and post-game rituals, like the huddle.

A good coach is someone who a parent should feel no hesitation to approach with any questions or concerns. He should be a good listener as well as a good communicator, and should take into consideration any constructive criticism offered by a parent. He should adhere firmly to his convictions, but he should also be flexible enough to consider new ideas. And lastly, he should be an effective motivator of his players, as well as an inspiring leader. His players should look up to him and want to play their best.

Author: Darcey Deeds

Can Brazil Win 2014 Soccer World Cup?


Obviously, it is a very difficult question to answer. In fact, it is also too early to answer this question, but we can ask is Brazil capable of winning the next soccer World Cup 2014? Does Brazil deserve it? Well, for lots of people, this question was very easy to answer as the five-time winner was shaky not very long ago. Brazil’s performance was not solid, but the result of the Confederation Cup 2013 made everything difficult for the Brazil haters. Now, we have to admit that Brazil played really well in the Confederation Cup 2013, and it can hope for the title of the upcoming Soccer World Cup 2014. Scolari does think so.

Even few days ago, Legend like Zico and Pele were very frustrated. Don’t forget the number of coaches Brazil changed to get a good result. Finally, Brazil achieved something good.

Brazil fC

Yes, Brazil has tried its best, and its performance shown that it worked, but things will not be the same in the next competition. World Cup is much tougher than the Confederation Cup. Pressure plays a great role. Do you think Neymar will be able handle that enormous amount of pressure? I don’t think so. He is still too young. What about other competitors like Germany, England, and arch rivals Argentina? Though Spain was devastated by Brazil in the final, but you can’t rule out Spain from the title race. Spain has too many high-profile players, and they will be more desperate to defend their title.

Some believe that the next winner will be a team from Latin America. Do you think Brazil can beat Argentina now or in the World Cup 2014? I don’ t think it will be easy to beat Argentina, though it is obvious that Brazil will play better in the World Cup, but the team lacks experience. Argentina could be stronger than Brazil in 2014, I think. Alejandro Sabella, head coach of Argentina, has tried to find the best combination to help Messi. Messi could be more dangerous in 2014! This magician deserves a World Cup title.

Germany will be a more matured team in 2014. We have seen their young guns in 2010 World Cup. They must be dying to get the title after 1990.

To be honest, Brazil has not faced extreme level of pressure, competition, and expectation in the last competition. This cup is nothing compared to the upcoming World Cup-the greatest show on earth, but you never know what will happen in the next level. Players like Hulk, Fred, and Neymar could make a difference. Scolari has lots of experience. He does know how to win a World Cup, though he has no Ronaldo this time. Good luck for everyone!

Michael Chris

Ones to Watch European Under-17 Championship 2013 / Top 5 Hot Prospects in Football

Check out our list of the ones to watch in the European Under-17 Championship 2013. Five hot prospects who can claim the title Golden Player of the Tournament. The hot prospects of European Under-17 Championship will follow in the footpaths of former European Under-17 starlets such as Karim Benzema, Bojan Krkic, Stephan El Shaarawy, Wayne Rooney and Mario Götze among others.

Alberto Cerri, Striker, Parma

A Ceri

Alberto Cerri is the captain of the Italian Under-17 and can be recognised by wearing the number 9 shirt. He was born in Parma 6 April 1996. The 190cm tall, striker earned his professional debut at March 30th 2013 playing 16 minutes against Pescara making him the youngest debutante in Serie A in the history of Parma. He is one of the reasons why Italy Under-17 qualified for the final round, as he scored two decisive goals, one against Holland in the 78th minute and the other against Norway.

Alen Halilović, Attacking Midfielder, Dinamo Zagreb


He was born 18th of June 1996 in Dubrovnik and is regarded as a remarkable hot prospect. The 170cm tall elegant attacking midfielder became the youngest ever goalscorer in the Croatian First Division. The young wonderkid has recorded 2 goals in 16 appearances for Dinamo. He has also featured in the UEFA Champions League this season. A remarkable talented player, with a fierce left foot. Free-kick specialist and can be compared to Lionel Messi!

Fran Brodic, Striker, Dinamo Zagreb

F Brodi

The lethal striker born 8. January 1997 is regarded as the most hot prospect in Croatia. The new wonderkid have been followed by the best teams in the world. He got his professional debut for Dinamo Zagreb on 14th April 2013 and beat Alen Halilovic in becoming the youngest ever playing for the first team of Dinamo. Fran Brodic has recorded 4 assists and 2 goals in 5 appearances and have been the most important player for the Croatian Under-17 teams qualification to the final round of European Championship 2013.

Perhaps this young football talent should be on the list of the Top Talents for 2013?

Valentino Lazaro, Attacking Midfielder, FC Red Bull Salzburg


The elegant midfielder is regarded as one of the brightest Austrian talents. The 180cm tall hot prospect of Greek and Angolan origin is contracted to FC Red Bull Salzburg. He got his professional debut in start of November 2012 where he substituted Valon Beisha, the older brother of Veton Berisha who is described as one of the best talents in the Norwegian Premier League. The Austrian technical attacking midfielder wearing the number 10 shirt could be compared to Zinedine Zidane because of his excellent passes and flick ons.

Federico Bonazzoli, Striker, Inter Milan 


He is regarded as one of the best Italian talents coming through the Nerazzurri academy. In the last couple of weeks he has trained with the first team of Inter Milan. The left footed striker is remarkable lethal. Federico Bonazzoli, scored a hat-trick against Lichtenstein in only 10 minutes! He is one of the youngest talents in the tournament, but is definitely one to watch as he could become one of the best Italian strikers ever!

Author: Espen Hoegli