June 2018 - Soccer Wiretap

Chelsea Will Hire Maurizio Sarri As Manager

Jun 30, 2018 10:28 PM

Chelsea will hire Maurizio Sarri to replace Antonio Conte.

The club has been in a state of flux with Conte expected to be fired but talks over compensation delayed the process.

The playing staff have been in the dark over the managerial situation.

Negotiations have been ongoing between intermediaries seeking to secure Sarri’s release from his contract at Napoli.

Dominic Fifield/The Guardian

Tags: Chelsea, Napoli, Misc Rumor, Transfer Rumor

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Javier Mascherano Announces Retirement From Argentina

Jun 30, 2018 4:04 PM

Javier Mascherano has announced his retirement from international soccer.

"This story has ended. We gave it our everything until the end," said Mascherano.

"It was a crazy match, in which we didn't start well but we recovered and we turned it around. But their tying goal did so much damage to us.

"It cost us so much to lift ourselves up again. From this point on I will be just another fan of the Argentina national team. It is over. The illusion is shattered."

ESPN

Tags: Argentina, Misc Rumor, World Cup

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Minnesota United's Collin Martin Announces He's Gay

Jun 29, 2018 5:38 PM

Minnesota United midfielder Collin Martin announced on Friday that he is gay.

Martin, 23, is the only openly gay male athlete active in a major professional American sports league, after the retirement of LA Galaxy winger Robbie Rogers last November.

"Tonight my team, Minnesota United, is having their Pride night. It's an important night for me -- I'll be announcing for the first time publicly that I am an openly gay player in Major League Soccer.

"I have been out as a gay man for many years to my family and friends, and this includes my teammates. I have played Major League Soccer for 6 seasons: 4 seasons with DC United and 2 seasons with Minnesota United. Today, I'm proud that my entire team and the management of Minnesota United know that I am gay. I have received only kindness and acceptance from everyone in Major League Soccer and that has made the decision to come out publicly that much easier.

"As we celebrate Pride night, I want to thank my teammates for their unconditional support for who I am. In light of my experience as a professional athlete, I want to take this moment to encourage others who play sports professionally or otherwise to have confidence that sport will welcome them wholeheartedly. June is Pride month, and I am proud to be playing for Pride, and to be playing as an out gay man."

ESPN

Tags: Minnesota United

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Cristiano Ronaldo's Release Clause Dropped To $140M

Jun 29, 2018 11:12 AM

Real Madrid has reportedly decreased the release clause of Cristiano Ronaldo from €1 billion to just €120 million ($140 million).

This clause, however, would not allow Ronaldo to join any club in La Liga or Paris Saint-Germain. This could setup a return to the Premier League as several clubs in England could afford to pay Ronaldo's release clause.

Ronaldo appears to continue to seek his exit from Real Madrid this summer.

Lucas Navarrete/Managing Madrid

Tags: Real Madrid, Misc Rumor, Transfer Rumor

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Austin Sets Up August 9th Vote To Finalize MLS Stadium Plan

Jun 29, 2018 11:07 AM

The Austin City Council has set up an August 9th meeting to make a decision on whether to move forward with a proposal from Precourt Sport Ventures to build a stadium on city-owned land to relocate the Columbus Crew.

The council unanimously approved a resolution to analyze the PSV proposal and begin stadium negotiations. 

A second resolution calling for a bidding process for the site and viewed as hostile to PSV was reworked more to PSV's liking and passed 9-1.

“I believe there is a good deal to be made here,” Mayor Steve Adler said at 3:45 a.m.

Originally, PSV wanted an agreement with the city by the end of June. Precourt officials said they can live with the delay.

“It’s not optimal for us; it might slow things up a bit,” Precourt told the the American-Statesman before the vote early Friday. “But as long as the item passes, that’s what we’re hoping for. We’re confident.”

Kevin Lyttle, Chris Bils/Austin American-Statesman

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Antoine Griezmann Interested In Someday Joining MLS

Jun 29, 2018 11:02 AM

Antoine Griezmann would like to someday finish his career in the MLS.

Griezmann is well-known for his love for the NBA and frequently makes trips to the United States to watch games.

Griezmann is 27 and committed long-term to Atletico Madrid this summer.

"World champion, win a Champions League and then I can go and quietly play in the USA. That's my ideal itinerary. It's not bad, is it?" he said.

"If the plan goes like that, I'd sign for that now. I don't know at which age I want to play in MLS, it'll all depend on the trophies I'll have won beforehand. When I'm nearer 32 or 33, I want to be there. I still have to be presentable on the pitch."

Ian Holyman/ESPN

Tags: Atlético Madrid, Misc Rumor

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Chelsea Working To Buy Aleksandr Golovin From CSKA

Jun 29, 2018 11:00 AM

Chelsea is holding talks with CSKA Moscow on buying Aleksandr Golovin as their first signing of the summer.

Juventus had been close to securing the player earlier in the summer, with Arsenal having also been in the picture.

Dominic Fifield/The Guardian

Tags: Chelsea, CSKA, Misc Rumor, Transfer Rumor

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Belgium, Uruguay, Spain Lead In xG Differential After Group Stage

Jun 28, 2018 6:08 PM

Expected goals (xG) is a method developed by Michael Caley for estimating the quality of chances that a team creates or concedes in a match.

The following figures show the xG differential for all 32 nations after the conclusion of the Group Stage of the World Cup.

1. Belgium: 2.00
2. Uruguay: 1.30
3. Spain: 1.20
4. Brazil: 1.13
5. England: 0.97
6. France: 0.73
7. Switzerland: 0.63
8. Croatia: 0.50
9. Senegal: 0.30
10. Sweden: 0.27
11. Russia: 0.10
12. Colombia: 0.07
13. Mexico: 0.07
14. Panama: 0.07
15. Germany: 0.00
16. Japan: -0.03
17. Denmark: -0.03
18. Australia: -0.10
19. Portugal: -0.20
20. Argentina: -0.20
21. Iran: -0.30
22. South Korea: -0.33
23. Poland: -0.33
24. Iceland: -0.47
25. Nigeria: -0.50
26. Peru: -0.60
27. Serbia: -0.63
28. Egypt: -0.67
29. Morocco: -0.70
30. Saudi Arabia: -0.73
31. Costa Rica: -1.13
32. Tunisia: -3.03

RealGM Staff Report

Tags: IQ, Stats, World Cup

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World Cup Snapshot: Belgium 1, England 0

Jun 28, 2018 5:49 PM

What happened in one snapshot in the 2018 World Cup, 48, Group G: Belgium 1, England 0.

RealGM Staff Report

Tags: Infographic, World Cup

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World Cup Snapshot: Tunisia 2, Panama 1

Jun 28, 2018 5:33 PM

What happened in one snapshot in the 2018 World Cup, Match 47, Group G: Tunisia 2, Panama 1.

RealGM Staff Report

Tags: Infographic, World Cup

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World Cup Snapshot: Colombia 1, Senegal 0
Colombia has won Group H.

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World Cup Snapshot: Poland 1, Japan 0
Poland salvaged a point but Japan will advance.

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Wayne Rooney Agrees To Join D.C. United From Everton
Wayne Rooney spent last season returning to his boyhood club of Everton.

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Arsenal Close To Signing Sokratis Papastathopoulos From Dortmund
Sokratis Papastathopoulos becomes the third signing for Unai Emery.

Ed Aarons, Fabrizio Romano/The Guardian

World Cup Snapshot: Brazil 2, Serbia 0
Brazil picked up three points against Serbia and have advanced to the round of 16.

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World Cup Snapshot: Switzerland 2, Costa Rica 2
Switzerland has advanced to the group stage of the World Cup.

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World Cup Snapshot: Sweden 3, Mexico 0
Sweden and Mexico have advanced to the knockout stage of the World Cup.

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World Cup Snapshot: South Korea 2, Germany 0
Germany has been knocked out of the World Cup.

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Marouane Fellaini Agrees To New Deal With United
Marouane Fellaini turned down an extension in September, preferring to hold out for a longer deal.

ESPN

World Cup Snapshot: Argentina 2, Nigeria 1
Lionel Messi and Argentina had a tumultuous group stage but they've advanced to the round of 16.

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World Cup Snapshot: Croatia 2, Iceland 1
Croatia comfortably won group D with nine points.

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World Cup Snapshot: France 0, Denmark 0
France and Denmark essentially played for a tie to finish the group stage.

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World Cup Snapshot: Peru 2, Australia 0
Peru went out of the World Cup with a win over Australia.

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Diego Maradona Treated By Paramedics Following Argentina's Win
Diego Maradona had been expressive throughout the match and displayed his middle fingers after Argentina's match-winning goal.

ESPN

Chelsea Won't Consider Selling Ruben Loftus-Cheek
Ruben Loftus-Cheek spent last season with Crystal Palace on loan.

Dominic Fifield/The Guardian

World Cup Snapshot: Spain 2, Morocco 2
Spain scored a late goal to tie Morocco and advance as the Group B winner.

RealGM Staff Report

World Cup Snapshot: Portugal 1, Iran 1
Portugal and Iran tied at 1-1, but Cristiano Ronaldo's side will advance.

RealGM Staff Report

World Cup Snapshot: Saudi Arabia 2, Egypt 1
Saudi Arabia defeated Egypt 2-1 after both teams came into the match without any points.

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World Cup Snapshot: Uruguay 3, Russia 0
Luis Suarez and Uruguay finished in first in Group A.

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Dortmund Can't Afford To Sign Alvaro Morata From Chelsea
There had been reports that Christian Pulisic could go to Chelsea as part of a deal for Alvaro Morata.

Stephan Uersfeld/ESPN