Lionel Messi V Cristiano Ronaldo – Who Is the Greatest?

Lionel Messi V Cristiano Ronaldo – Who Is the Greatest?

Last night saw yet another epic El Classico where Lionel Messi and Cristano Ronaldo continued their ongoing battle for World supremacy. Barcelona and Real Madrid played out a spectacular 2-2 draw with Ronaldo and his arch nemesis Messi scoring all of the goals. These two players are taking the art of a footballer to whole new levels, but while there is no condemning that they are the stand-out talents of their generation, and perceptions of all-time, the ongoing question is' who of the two is the greatest? ' Whilst there is no definite correct answer to this, the widely held view over recent years has been that Messi is the King and Ronaldo the very talented Prince. However, the gap between the magical Argentinean and the Portuguese adonis appears to be closing, with some feeling that Ronaldo now describes the crown of 'World's Best Player'.

Despite often playing just behind the main striker, Messi appears to be able to score from anywhere and everywhere. Last season, at the age of only 24, he became Barcelona's all-time leading scorer. In addition to that he also broke the 39 year old record which was set my German super striker Gerd Muller for most goals in a single European season. Amazingly, Ronaldo has managed a similar record to Messi and their overall 'goals to games' ratio since 2009 is almost identical. After starting his career as a winger, Ronaldo's 'eye for goal' became apparent under Alex Ferguson at Manchester United. His trademark 'dipping' free-kicks and solo goals prompted Real Madrid to break the World transfer record to bring the Old Trafford hero to the Bernabeu. Just as Messi can often be found collecting the ball in his own half, Ronaldo often drifts back in search of possession, and is also found in wide positions tormenting the opposing left and right backs. Given the fact that neither player is what is referred to as 'goal poacher' makes their records even more unbelievable.

With regard to rewards, both team based and personal, Messi is the clear winner at present. He has won the Ballon d'Or three years running (much to the obvious dismay of Ronaldo!), And his La Liga and Champions League silverware outweigh Ronaldo's.

In conclusion it is evident that both Lionel Messi and Cristano Ronaldo are head and shoulders above any other current players in World football and there are no signs of this changing any time soon. Given their relatively young ages there is every possibility that they will go down as the two greatest players in the history of the sport. For all the achievements of Pele, Maradona, Eusebio etc, there is already a case to be made that Messi and Ronaldo have matched and surpassed them all. The fact that two such players are present in the same era, playing in the same league and at almost the same ages makes the comparison slightly easier, so here goes …

Lionel Messi is currently the 'World Greatest Footballer' with Cristano Ronaldo an extremely close second. The fact that Lionel Messi has been officially awarded this title three years running with the Ballon d'Or adds weight to the argument. That along with minor points such as his superior asses record, the fact that he has consistently made more appearances than Ronaldo and that his all-round team-play is slightly better just edges it for the Argentinean genius at present. In Ronaldo's defense he is the faster / stronger physical specimen, has better heading ability and does not have a Xavi or Iniesta to link up with, but this just doesnt quite level it – for now !!!

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Some New FC Barcelona Facts That Fans Should Know

Some New FC Barcelona Facts That Fans Should Know

FC Barcelona is one of the most popular international football clubs and has its fan spread all over the globe. With every passing season, the fans of FC Barcelona get new facts to update themselves with and this often proves to be quiet a mean task. Here are a few FC Barcelona facts for the fans to update themselves with.

As the year 2016 paved a way for 2017, the Barça fans have much to rejoice about. Not only have the club proven their strategy to be a substantive one against the numerous criticism they received, but they also retained their reputation of being one of the best and most popular international clubs. The team makes its way through the La Liga to retain its crown and leaves some new FC Barcelona facts from the bygone year for its fans.

· In the year 2016, FC Barcelona has made its fans proud by picking up three main international titles. The team has successfully picked up The Spanish Super Cup, The Copa Del Ray and La Liga.

· In the year that has gone by, FC Barcelona has played a total of fifty nine matches, out of which it has won a major of forty four matches. Although the team has had a good streak of victories, it has lost seven matches and had a draw on eight matches.

· The players have not only made the fans proud but also the coach, Luis Enrique proud by scoring 174 goals and keeping an average of 2.94 goals per game. However, the Catalans did let in forty three goals across all the competitions together.

· In most of their matches, FC Barcelona follows a 4-3-3 formation. This has made a way for more goals being notched up by the three attacking players. A whooping number of 120 goals out of total 174 has been scored by the three strikers- Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez. Of those three, Messi has been the highest scorer with 51 goals and is closely followed by Luis Suárez who has scored 48 goals. These two star players are followed by Neymar Jr who has scored 21 goals for FC Barcelona.

· Not only has the strikers done a noticeable job but other team members also played their role as well, with Sergio Busquets making consistent and noteworthy contribution. The player, as statistics shows, has played a role in most of the passes while taking the number of attempted goals by him to 3403 out of which, 3082 were successful.

· FC Barcelona has provided its fans with quite a few goal fests to cheer for. The club won at the Riazor with an 8-0 score and celebrated a 7-0 victory against Valencia in the semifinals. The Copa Del Ray saw the team claim a win over Hercules with a 7-0 score as well.

· The Barça coach has used thirty eight players toill date in all of the competitions and sixteen out of these thirty eight players have made it to the score sheet.

FC Barcelona keeps on giving its fans new achievements as well as players to cherish and this trend will certainly be kept alive as heinted by the coach when he allowed six new players to make their debut for Barcelona this season.

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An Overview Of Serie A Teams

An Overview Of Serie A Teams

Serie A, also called as Serie A TIM, reiter to the top level professional league in the Italian football league system. Found during 1929-30 season, Serie A is now on its way to complete 87 seasons. Lega Calcio was the organizer of the Serie A competitions until 2010 but Lega Serie A was introduced during the 2010/11 season. It is widely regarded as one of the most competitive football leagues in the world. In accordance with a report by IFFHS, Serie A is the strongest national league all over the globe. Serie A teams have been the highest number of European Cup finalists till date.

The Italian outfits have reached the Europa competition final 26 times, which is a record in the continent. They have wrapped up the title in 12 seasons. As per UEFA's league coefficient, Serie A ranks fourth among the European leagues and come only next to La Liga, Bundesliga and English Premier League. The ranking is based on the Italian clubs' performance in the Europa League as well as the Champions League over the last five years. The league was the topper on the UEFA ranking between 1986 and 1988 and also from 1990 to 1339. Let us now take a closer look at the best Serie A clubs.

Serie A Competition

Before 1929, many Italian clubs participated in the top-most level. Till 1922, the earlier rounds were played on a regional basis. Inter is the only club that has played in every Serie A season since its inception.

Best Teams in Serie A

The top-tier Italian league hosts Juventus, Inter Milan and AC Milan which are considered three of the most popular clubs in the world. All of them are the founding members of G-14 which hosted the most famous and largest football clubs of Europe. It was the only league which had three representatives in the G-14 group. More players have been awarded the prestigious Ballon d'Or during their Serie A spell than any other country league. However, 18 players each from both Serie A and La Liga have received the award FIFA Ballon d'Or so far.

Juventus is considered the most successful Serie A club. The club, nicknamed as the Bianconeri, the Old Lady etc, is the only entity in the world football to have won every continental competition in Europe as well as the world title. Inter Milan became the first Serie A team to have won a treble following their 2009/10 achievement. Juventus, Inter Milan and AC Milan along with Roma, Lazio, Napoli and Fiorentina form famous Seven Sisters of Italian Football. Juventus is the current defending champions of Serie A title. However, Inter Milan are, at present, the topper on the league table.

Serie A Footballers

Serie A have produced some of the best names in the world football. Diego Maradona, the prince of football, also played in Serie A at Napoli. Paolo Maldini, Michel Platini are among other stalwarts who took retirement from international football. Serie A teams are also big spenders and do not mind forking out a fortune to capture the star players.

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Football Betting Superstitions

Football Betting Superstitions

Superstitions are part of most people life from ancient times. In moderns times the belief that a specific action determines the positive or negative outcome of a future event is more popular than ever.

When looking for a job, when taking an exam, on your wedding day, when moving to a new house and why not when playing an important football match and placing a bet.

Before talking about football betting superstitions you should know by now that even the football players have weird game day superstitions. Here are some 2012 football team captains that follow strange rituals and hope for good luck protection:

Steven Gerrard (born 1980) and the Liverpool players like to touch the, ‘This is Anfield’ sign in the tunnel on their way to the pitch. Steven Gerrard is captain of English team Liverpool and the England national team.

Iker Casillas Fernández (born 1981), most known as Iker Casillas, Spain’s football team captain and Real Madrid goalkeeper observes a ritual in which he touches his own crossbar whenever his team scores a goal.

Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro (born 1985) or just Cristiano Ronaldo, the captain of the Portuguese national team and striker for Spanish La Liga club Real Madrid, keeps a pre-match ritual of getting his hair cut for fear of jinxing his scoring run.

Like all people, football betting fans also have their own rituals and look for good luck signs before placing a bet.

When people get some money from a bet, they say that it was because the palm of their hand started itching or because they wear the favorite colored t-shirt on the betting event.

Some people believe they should step the right foot forward or to fill the betting ticket with the left hand. As regards good luck charms, silver is used by some people for sports bets.

Television is a major supernatural superstition element. There are some people that believe that they will not win a bet if they don’t watch the game, some of them turn the TV off momentarily and then turn it on, move to other channels, stop watching the game for a moment, all this for the hope that good things will happen for the team they bet on.

There a lot of more superstition that I could tell about, but I don’t want to jinx my bet on tonight game by telling you about my lucky red pijamas.

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All You Need to Know About Athletics

All You Need to Know About Athletics

There are many popular games where people participate. Most of them are team games. However, if you take a look at the participation in Athletics, you will find a few and most of them are individual events. Yet, the amount of training and preparation that goes into it is commendable. How many people are completely aware of the events that are a part of Athletics? Most people are aware of only some of the national and international series.

Events in Athletics

The International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) has the following events listed in Athletics.

• Track Events

1. Competitive Running: This includes:

i. (Distance) Short distances referred to as the Sprints.

ii. (Distance) Middle distances

iii. (Distance) Long distances

iv. Distances in Hurdling events: This includes running with hurdles on the track.

One has to clear the hurdles successfully and reach the finish line to make it.

v. Steeplechase – Similar to the Hurdling events, except that the track here would contain hurdles as well as water jumps.

vi. (Team event) Relay – Middle Distance: Here every member has to run a specific distance, carrying a ‘baton’. Once he covers his distance, he has to hand over the baton to his other team member who starts to run his distance from there. Example: 4 x 100m Relay.

vii. (Team event) Relay – Long Distance.

2. Walking: This is another event, where people have to cover a distance by walking. There are variants like brisk walk, Race walk, etc where the speed and distances vary.

• Field Events

1. Events with Jumps: These events involve the athlete jumping for a certain target.

a. Horizontal Distance

i. Long Jump: Here the athlete attains a certain speed through a short distance sprint and then has to jump over a pit of sand covering the maximum horizontal distance possible.

ii. Triple Jump: Similar to Long Jump, except that the running is replaced with a hop and a step or a skip. This is followed by the final jump covering a good horizontal distance.

b. Vertical distance/ Height

i. High Jump: Here the athlete has to clear a hurdle along the vertical scale or he has to clear a hurdle placed at a certain height.

ii. Pole Vault: This is similar to High jump, except that, one has to clear the hurdle by jumping from the support of a long flexible pole.

2. Events with Throws: These events involve the athlete throwing a certain implement and measuring the horizontal distance of the throw.

a. Shotput

b. Discus

c. Javelin

d. Hammer

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LaLiga Weekly Jornada 38

LaLiga Weekly Jornada 38



En este cierre de temporada aún se juegan muchas cosas, en especial por la lucha entre Getafe CF, Sevilla FC y Valencia CF por apoderarse de la cuarta posición.

Suscríbete al canal oficial de LaLiga Santander en HD
Subscribe to the Official Channel of LaLiga in High Definition

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Rule Change May Help Profits

Rule Change May Help Profits

A change in the rules for the World Cup may help your World Cup Spread Betting options after a rule banning penalty takers from stopping at the end of their run ups before striking the ball. FIFA says its unsporting behaviour and will be giving a yellow card if players continue to do it. They can feint in the middle of the run up but not at the end. If the player stops at the end of his run up and then scores, the kick will have to be taken again. The issuing of the yellow card is where the spread betting comes in. If you had a 10 quid bet on the number of yellows in a match it could well bump up your winnings by a tenner a card.

Happy days.

Other World Cup news this morning. Marcello Lippi has left Fabio Grosso out of his squad after he trimmed it to 28 players from 30. He said he had no room for sentiment in his selections. There are now only 8 players from the winning squad in Germany 4 years ago and that could fall further when the squad is cut to the final 23. England’s players are at a high altitude training camp in Austria for 2 weeks in preparation for their first game in Rustenburg which is 1,500 metres above sea level. Capello had brought some of his Madrid squads to the same venue for pre season and likes the peaceful surroundings. Michael Ballack insists his Germany career is not over after he was ruled out of the World Cup with injury. Watch out Mr Boetang as Ballack has said he will start court proceedings over the tackle that ended his chances. Michel Platini has said that England’s 2018 bid can still survive despite the embarrassment caused by the Triesman allegations. And in a follow on to that Gary Lineker has left his post with the Mail on Sunday over their attempts to sell copies by scuppering the 2018 bid. Good lad Gary leads by example.

Transfer news sees a lot of the usual suspects in the news this morning, Man City are said to have entered the chase for Franck Ribery. Barcelona and Madrid are rumoured to have pulled out over his personal problems. Ajax wants 35m from Man Utd for striker Luis Suarez. Man Utd are set to bid 20m for Everton’s Jack Rodwell. Arsenal are looking for 50m for Fabergas in an attempt to stave off Barcelona’s advances. Barcelona are ready to bid 70m for Torres to stop Chelsea getting him, and Liverpool want to bring in Joe Cole and Stephen Ireland and insist they have the funds to do it. With Real Mallorca set to go into voluntary administration in Spain with debts of 85m euro some of these figures seem a little OTT. The total debt in La Liga now stands at over 3.5 billion euro. As Ali G would say «keep it real».

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10 Reasons Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo Are Not the Greatest of All Time [GOAT] in Football

10 Reasons Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo Are Not the Greatest of All Time [GOAT] in Football

For the best part of the last decade, two names have dominated world football (soccer) more than any others; Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. These great rivals have broken countless football records, scored insane number of goals and pushed each other all the way to greatness despite the fact that they are two very different football players, playing two very different styles in two very different roles for two different clubs. The only thing that really connects the two is the ocean of ability that separates them from the rest of the players in the world. There can be no question as to whether the duo belongs in the pantheon of football all-time greats anymore. Although any effort to determine the greatest footballer of all time is subject to generational bias, it should be noted that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are not individually or collectively the greatest football player(s) of all time due to the following reasons;

Cristiano is not the best ‘Ronaldo’ to play the game: Despite his unparalleled achievement in and off the field of play, Cristiano Ronaldo is still not considered the best Ronaldo to have played the game. Ronaldo de Assisi (also known as Ronaldinho) and Ronaldo de Lima (the phenomenon) are the other ‘Ronaldos’ whose legendary attacking prowess is often compared to Cristiano Ronaldo’s. Ronaldo de Lima was a more explosive and complete striker who would have probably been the ‘World’s Best Striker Ever’ if he had stayed injury-free in his footballing career, while Ronaldinho was the entertainer who, at his peak, constantly wowed the footballing world. Cristiano Ronaldo is better than other ‘Ronaldos’ in terms of constituency over the years, phenomenal goal-scoring rates, overall fitness and prolonged career (due to low rate of injuries) but for sheer skill, explosiveness, superior technical ability, and the ‘wow’ factor, the two ‘Ronaldos’ are better than Cristiano Ronaldo.

Lionel Messi is not the best ever Argentine player: It is a well-known fact that for a footballer to be the best ever in the world, he has to be the best ever footballer in his country and sadly, Lionel Messi isn’t both. Lionel Messi is not the best football player Argentina has produced. That honor goes to Diego Armando Maradona. Maradona (widely regarded as one of the best football players ever) is a footballing legend that inspired Argentina to a world cup victory and S.S.C. Napoli (in the Italian Football League) to its first and second League title (Scudetti) in its history. He is the scorer of the world’s most dubious goal (the ‘Hand of God’ goal) and the FIFA Goal of the Century. There is virtually a cult around the player in Argentina. Diego Maradona (and Pele) is the benchmark for the illustrious South American nation when a new star comes on to the block. So, while Messi has dazzled on the European stage, passing milestone after milestone and picking up loads of awards, his countrymen regard him as the country’s second best football player ever.

Both players have never won the World Cup: Although the latter rounds of the modern-day UEFA Champions League would rival the FIFA World Cup in terms of quality, with talents from around the globe increasingly concentrated in the hands of an elite few, the World Cup still retains substantial symbolic value as a quadrennial competition which pit the best of one nation against the best of another. It is no secret Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have never won (or inspired their respective countries to win) the FIFA World Cup. Cristiano Ronaldo has won an European Cup (The Euros) with his home country, Portugal but has never been to the semi-finals or the finals of the World Cup while Lionel Messi was underwhelming in the 2014 world cup semi-final and final with his home country Argentina eventually losing to Germany. The World (and Messi) was shocked when he was named the best player and awarded the Golden Ball of the tournament. Lionel Messi is also a three-time runner-up in the Copa America competition with Argentina. Most football players such as Zinedine Zidane, Pele, Diego Maradonna, Ronaldinho, Ronaldo de Lima etc. often touted as the world’s best ever football player all played dominant roles in the World Cup tournament they eventually won. The same cannot be said presently of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

They are not Football’s best Goal-scorers ever: Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are efficient, effective and phenomenal goal scorers boasting amazing goal per match ratio but they aren’t among the five best goal scorers in football history. Neither of them have scored up more than 700 goals in their respective careers so they cannot be in the company of great players such as Pele, Romario, Josef Bican, Ferenc Puskas (he has a FIFA goal-scoring award named after him), Gerd Muller. The rate of scoring of these legendary players is more impressive than that of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo given they ended their footballing careers with goal tallies well into the 800s. So if scoring goals are what makes footballers great, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, having better players boasting better goal tallies ahead of them, cannot be the greatest footballers of all time.

Both players have been accused of being criminals: They both have tax payment issues with the Spanish authorities (the country they reside and play in) and so have been accused of being criminals. After a lengthy trial that attracted so much publicity due to his status as a supremely gifted sportsman, Lionel Messi (and his father) was found guilty of not paying his taxes to the Spanish government, fined heavily and sentenced to two years in prison (he has since agreed to pay an increased fine rather than have a 21-month suspended prison sentence). His trial, guilty verdict, fine and (suspended) sentence damaged his credibility as a morally upright athlete who could do no wrong and that of his football club (FC Barcelona). Cristiano Ronaldo is also being investigated for tax evasion by the Spanish authorities, might be tried (or not), heavily fined and get a suspended prison sentence.

Their overall goal tallies are padded with too many penalties: Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are the greatest goal scorers of their generation. They score obscene number of goals in a football season but almost half of the total goals scored both players have come from the penalty spot. In football, penalties are the easiest way to score because it involves only the designated penalty-taker and a goal keeper to beat. Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, being the designated penalty-takers of their respective club sides, always take every penalty kick awarded them or their teammates thereby increasing their goal tallies. In 2013/2014 Football season in England, Luis Suarez of Liverpool FC (before he moved to FC Barcelona to become a teammate of Lionel Messi) won the highest goal scorer award in the English Premier League and shared the European Golden Shoe award with Cristiano Ronaldo by scoring 32 goals in 33 games in open play without taking a single penalty. That is a record Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo do not yet hold.

They play for football’s most valuable clubs: Messi and Ronaldo play for super-clubs in Spain where the top sides score goals by the hatful. The second millennium’s new financial order unfortunately gave birth to the modern super team essentially creating a certain form of predictability in both domestic and continental leagues. Lionel Messi plays for FC Barcelona in Spain while Ronaldo plays for Real Madrid CF also in Spain. FC Barcelona and Real Madrid CF are extremely rich and dominant football clubs that can afford to buy and stockpile the best and most expensive football talent anywhere in the world and so Messi and Ronaldo are always surrounded and assisted by world-class players to aid in dominating continental club football thus raising their international profiles. Both clubs always have a slew of world-class players at their disposal which leads to utter domination in domestic (Spanish La Liga) and continental (UEFA Champions League) football competitions.

The benefit of playing in the Modern Era: It is almost impossible to compare players of different era in a game that has changed so much over the years. Great footballers like Ferenc Puskas, Alfredo di Stefano played in an era when the game was played at a tempo unrecognizably slower than in the modern era. That does not make them less great than Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. The game played presently has changed because of changes in rules governing the game and the quality of footballs produced and used. Players in the modern era are also fitter, faster, and stronger than they have ever been, but players (especially defenders) are technically weaker than they have ever been. The Champions League’s expansions of the nineties is also an advantage to the modern player: having a group stage allows a margin of error that simply did not exist in the knock out style pre-1995 tournament. It has never been easier for attackers – Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo probably would never score 40-60 goals a season in the 1980s when the rules governing the game and footballs used didn’t benefits attackers (strikers), and defenders/defenses were littered with world-class talents.

They are a part of football’s rich history: We view the history of the game through our own national experiences, or at least we did until the modern era, where we can watch the Spanish league, Messi and Ronaldo every weekend. It is worth remembering that in the 1970s and even into the 1980s, most of Europe just watched the European Cup and UEFA Cup games of their own national teams. So, here is a little suggestion; the next time Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo score a breath-taking goal and someone on Twitter suggests the debate (on the greatest football player) is over, head to YouTube and spend ten minutes watching goals from Diego Maradona, Johan Cruyff, Pele, Ferenc Puskas, Roberto Baggio, Eusebio, Alfredo di Stefano and so on. There have been plenty of geniuses in the game, and Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are part of that rich football history.

Generational and positional bias in football: The hunt for the greatest football player in history is like that of the Holy Grail. All footballers (sportsmen) are products of their time. Due to football’s developmental stagnation relative to other sport and because there are so many different positions, and so many roles within those positions, it is hard to have a worthwhile conversation about who the best football player of all time is. Since the main objective of the game is to score a goal, the best goal scorers such as Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo will always be near the top of any list about the game’s best players.

Conclusion; Don’t kid yourself that there won’t be another player like Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo, no-one thought they would see another player like Diego Maradona.

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What Makes A Complete Striker?

What Makes A Complete Striker?

In a gathering of football enthusiast, discussing and debating over football issues; some relevant and some others irrelevant. A few about individual players and others about teams with great exploits, teams that have defiled all odds to achieve extra ordinary success, the debate got hotter, and the tempo was raised, then supported this topic; "Who is the best striker in Europe"?

Silence there was, each sinking into himself. It was a topic that made me ponder, but there is another side to this controversy; what really makes a striker? What are the qualities of a striker? How do we distinguish strikers from strikers?

Pondering over the interesting topic, ideas sprung up; views of mine came alive. The fundamental question as stated above needed urgent answers to put the debt to rest. First, who is a striker? A striker is a front man in team football, who the whole team look up to produce goals, that will bring victory, he's that man who bangs the net with goals

Let's review what really makes a striker?
Some of the qualities, which I can deduce of a competent striker, are: height, speed, skills, strength, wits, calculation and the ability to tear apart opposing defenses single-handedly and most important of all, good finishing.

The rave making strikers in Europe now, do possess some, if not all, of the above-mentioned qualities of a striker. Possessing of all the above-mentioned qualities makes a striker formidable. The greatest strikers in the footballing history possess all the qualities; the likes of Delima Ronaldo, The great Pele, Roberto Baggio, Romario, etc. which made them famous and deadly during their peak years, in the days of old.

Wayne Rooney, Didier Drogba, Fernando Torres, Lionel Messi, Samuel Eto'o, Cristiano Ronaldo, Diego Milito, Gonzalo Higuain, and the likes, are all proven goal scorers, who will bury any chance they get and will punish any defensive line up .

Analyzing each of the fore-mentioned players, will bring to the fore the fact that all these are formidable strikers, who score on a regular basis. England has always been blessed with intelligent and proven strikers at different points in time. There was a time it was Andy Cole, one of the best players that ever wore the red and white England jersey, the first player in the history of Premier League to net five goals in a single match, amazing is not it? Well his time is past now, but really he mesmerized fans of the then EPL with his exceptional skills and goal scoring prowess.

There was Alan shearer, what do I have to say about this exceptionally good striker? He equaled Andy Cole's record of five goals in a single match; He scored goals from different angles of the pitch, from different match situations: set pieces, counter-attack, open play and even even unintentionally and remote angle of the pitch, as a result of his forceful style of play, some section s of the fans were not friendly with him, same made him one of the most-feared during his time in the Premier League. Although he has not been successful as a manager, failing to save Newcastle UTD from the relegation problems, which caused its fall.

The English Footballing world woke to the 2009/2010 season to experience something different, an experience of goal banging, an all-round action experience; The Wayne Rooney Experience. Wayne Rooney as a player has grown to be very matured and confident. Watching the Rooney of five seasons ago in comparison to this season's, one would clearly notice the improvement in his style of play, his conduct on the pitch, team coordinating brilliance and the likes. All these improvements in Wayne Rooney have made him to be a very formidable and fearful striker in the world football. One of the talents which Rooney possess that endeared him to me and the football fans in general, is his ability to terrorize opposition defenses single-handedly with sheer brilliance. Rooney has scored 38 goals so far this season, and most of them have through his individual brilliance, although with the help of team mates, who have mastered his play in recent games.

Team work is another of his talent which puts on display in each match, he with his powerful and brilliant, has been able to foster unity in the team in terms of field play, he distributes accurate passages, he does not hold on to the ball meaninglessly, positions himself in the best possible position to be spotted for pass release which on a good day results to goal.

Away from England, and to the European scene, there is this player, who some have wrongly compared to a great football legend, the player who single-handedly destroy opposition teams, not only with his goals, but also with his passes, dribbles, speed, strength and all the rest.

The player, who is the current World Player of the Year, the most dangerous player on the planet currently; Lionel Messi! Some regard him as the "merciless", some others say he's the greatest player to walk the earth surface, but I'm seriously disagree to this notice. You run out of adjectives trying to describe him, no doubt he's a good player, proven goal-scorer, intelligent destroyer of opposing teams and worst of all he causes night mare to defenders, especially in the Spanish La Liga and also the Champions League, the two competitions which he plays his best football.

The "merciless" truly shows no mercy to teams and players that stands on his way to victory. He has scored 40 goals this season; His finishing and goal build-up play clearly spells out his superiority in Europe. He is being criticized for not excelling in big games with high expectation from him; he silenced his critics against Arsenal, after his well taken four goals to send Arsenal crashing out of Europe's elite club competition.

Resting the debate, I'll say strikers should be rated with different stats, theability of a striker to score plenty goals does not mean he's not a good striker. Fernando Torres is a brilliant striker, but he has not been able to score lots of goals does not mean he's not a complete striker. A complete striker is one who scores goals, has the ability to turn the game around with individual skill, spaces himself in the right positions to be given the ball and buries it at the back of the net. A striker is a playmaker.

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Travel Tips for Quito, Ecuador

Travel Tips for Quito, Ecuador

Information

– Confederate Books

My favorite Bookstore in Quito. Sells and buys. Friendly US-Owner. Big choice of used Lonley Planet books.
(Calama 410 y JL Mera, (02) 2527890)

Activities

– TeleferiQo / Rucu Pichincha (admission $ 4)

The hike to the Rucu Pichincha (4700m) from the top of the TeleferiQo is a good opportunity to acclimatize oneself. Besides that you enjoy an amazing view over the whole city of Quito. Be sure to be at the teleferiQo station punctual at 9 oclock, to avoid waiting and to profit from the clear sight, which often lasts only till noon.
(Calle Arnulfo Araujo y A v Occidental, (02) 3250085)

– Soccer Game (admission $ 8)

Quitos two best teams – Liga Quito and Nacional Quito – both have their own stadium. While playing against smaller Teams like Cuenca the stadiums arent fully crowded and fans are peacfull and laidback. The games are spectacular and visiting a game in Quito is a must for every footballfanatic. There are mostly two games a week (for example Wednesday and Sunday). Buy the newspaper "El Commercio" to check the dates. Buy the tickets right at the stadium (tribune around $ 8)
(Estadion Atahualpa (Nacional Quito) Av. Naciones Unidas y 6 de Diciembre)

– Daytrip to the hot springs Papallacta (admission $ 7)

The thermal bats of Papallacta are my favorite place in Ecuador. Luxurious, modern and clean you could spend the whole day in the different pools which vary from ice-cold to boiling-hot and are located in a beautiful landscape between high mountains. Theres also an icy river through the complex, where you can cool down. To go there catch a bus at the Terminal Terrestre (2 hours ride) and ask the driver to drop you off at the road to the baths in Papallacta. When returning to Quito you sometimes have to wait more than an hour for a Bus to Quito.

– Museo Solar Inti Nan (near Mitad del Mundo – admission $ 2)

Interesting experiments right on the equatorline and fascination outdoor exhibition. When driving to Mitad del Mundo head out directly to this place 300m east of the official Mitad del Mundo Monument.

– I do not recommend: Mitad del Mundo Monument

The Monument is not on the equatorline and I see no reason to visit this very touristic site.

Courses

– Spanish School Lector Academia

An excellent and reasonable priced German / Ecuadorian-run spanish school located in the northern region near the airport. Offers activities like city-tours and daytrips. Also arrange stays in friendly hostfamilies all located in the quiet and secure northern area.
(Calle Yumbos N50-270 y Fernando Dávalos, (02) 2276220)

– IE Internacional del Espanol

Offers trainings for spanish-teachers and publishes excellent spanish grammatic- and excercice-books for selfstudying. Good opportunity to improve your spanish on the road.
(Pinto E4-358 y Amazonas, (02) 2564910)

Tours

– Gulliver

I joined their two-day tour to the Cotopaxi ($ 160). Perfect organization. I can also recommend their Hosteria PapaGayo in the Cotopaxi-area to spend the night before Climbing Cotopaxi or Illiniza.
(JL Mera z Calama, (02) 2529297)

– Positiv Turismo Ecuador Trips

Swiss-run agency, which offers well-organized trips and Galapagos Cruises. I joined their Cuyabeno-Rainforest Canoetour and was really happy about everything. Friendly people.
(Voz Andes N41-81 y M. Echeverría, (02) 2440604)

– I do not recommend: Rainforestur

Went to the Illiniza Norte with them. Organization was a catastrophe (see LP Thorntree Topic). Definitly a bad agency with an unfriendly owner.

Sleeping

– L'Auberge Inn (single room with private bathroom $ 10)

Swiss-run quiet place with garden, internet, in-house agency and pool table. Rooms can be cool at night. Excellent Pancake for breakfast.
(Av Colombia N12-200 (near Old-Town and Mariscal), (02) 2552912)

– Hostal Charles Darwin (single room with private bathroom, Cable-TV and breakfast around $ 30)

Quiet location, garden, near the Mariscal area, friendly service.
(La Colina 304, (02) 2234323)

Eating

– Seven Eleven

Modern european-styled bar and restaurant. Eventhough the (strictly electronic) music is terrible loud, its worth a visit because of the excellent, reasonable priced and beautiful arranged dishes. Try the Filet Mignon ($ 5).
(Calama E619 y Reina Victoria (Mariscal), (02) 2556234)

– Los Troncos Steak House

Visit this Argentine Steakhouse for delicious grilled meat. The steaks are as juicy as the prices are, but if you do not mind spending $ 20 for the best "Lomo Fino" (Steak) in Ecuador this is the right place for you
(Av. De los Shyris 1280 y Portugal (near Parque Carolin), (02) 2437377)

– Pizzeria Milano

This Swiss-Italian run Pizzeria serves the probably best and only real italian-style pizza in town (Big Pizza $ 5)
(Calama y 6 de Diciembre (Mariscal, right before the 6 de diciembre corner))

– I do not recommend: Ch Farina

In a restaurant of this popular Pizzeria-Chain i've got sort of food poison after eating pizza and salad.

Entertainment

– Santino Club

While the bars and discos in the Mariscal area are overcrowded with tourists, you'll be the only gringo in the several places in front of the Swissotel (Av. 12 de Octobre 1820). Discoteca Santino is crowded with young, well-dressed locales who dance to Salsa, Cumbia and Merengue till dawn. Admission $ 10, for this amount you can order drinks at the bar. Bouncers are rough: Dress well and be in female company.
(12 de Octubre y Baquerizo Moreno, (02) 2248078)

Getting Around

– Panamericana Internacional (Buses to Cuenca, Loja, Guayaquil, Machala, Huaquillas, Pasaje, Manta, Esmeraldas)

Most comfortable Buses, own terminal near the Mariscal so you can avoid the chaotic Terminal Terrestre where all the other buses leave.
(Av. Cristobal Colon y Reina Victoria), (02) 2553690)

– Trans Esmeraldas (Buses to Atacames, Esmeraldas, Guayaquil, Salinas, Lago Agrio, Coca, Ibarra, San Lorenzo, Manta, Machalas, Huaquillas)

Modern and comfortable buses leaving from an own terminal near the Mariscal.
(Santa María 870 y 9 de Octubre, (02) 2505099)

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