Connect with us


2022 World Cup: Griezmann, the Glue That Holds France Together



Antoine Griezmann

The 2022 World Cup knockout rounds have been full of excitement, thrill, and tension. Every day of the tournament brings new, unforgettable moments. ESPN India has selected the most magical moment from each day to highlight, giving viewers a glimpse into the best of the action.

For the fifteenth day, we have chosen a tackle and a passing play (which was a spectacular long pass) by Antoine Griezmann in France’s 3-1 victory over Poland in the round-of-16.

Although you may not have seen the game, or even just watched the highlights or read a match report, you are aware of the heroes of this victory. Olivier Giroud, who is now the all-time leading scorer for the French men’s national team. Kylian Mbappe, who is thought of as the best player in the world at the moment and definitely the most intimidating at this World Cup. Hugo Lloris, whose saves kept Poland from scoring. However, the most important name, which has gone unmentioned a lot throughout this tournament, is Antoine Griezmann.

Giroud is the sharpest member of the squad, Lloris is the leader and Mbappe is the spark, while Griezmann is the unseen force that binds the whole team together.

It is quite remarkable how unnoticed Griezmann was before France scored their second goal. The goal was brilliant, with the official highlights emphasizing the key components; Giroud controlling the ball in the center of the field and then sending it over to Dembele, who attacked the Polish defense and then passed it off to Mbappe, who quickly touched it, then powerfully hit it in the top corner of the near post.

Griezmann performed a strong tackle in the French penalty area and then sent a near-perfect long pass to the forward, often missing from reports, highlights, and even when watching it live, to lead up to the play.

Is that all? What are you expecting?

Well, for starters, it’s not typical for someone like Griezmann to be that involved in open play. He ranks third among French (men’s) national team goal scorers. He has scored the third-most goals in Atletico Madrid history. At Real Sociedad, he emerged as a sensational left flank attacker who nearly always scored international goals (and did so fairly frequently). a man who helped France finish second at Euro 2016 by playing as a second striker and winning the golden boot. a man who switched to a more traditional #10 position and was (co-)France’s top scorer during their World Cup victory in 2018. a man with 131 assists and 276 goals for club and country.

This season, Antoine Griezmann has been Atletico Madrid’s super-sub, but it’s all part of their strategy.

Griezmann, one of the most prolific goal scorers in the modern game, was stopping an attack for the nth time inside his own area. This is not typical.

This game and this tournament have had numerous more minor moments that have shown how talented Griezmann is as a player, and this one was just one of them: He was among the greatest and most effective forwards in the competition in Russia. He is one of the best and most effective midfielders in Qatar.

News and features, a schedule, and squads for the 2022 World Cup

He disappeared from the discussion of the top players in the world in 2019 when he made a (in hindsight) unwise move to Barcelona, which accounts in large part for why he hasn’t received much attention. It didn’t help also that he had announced this by releasing a documentary on the transfer called “the Decision.” At Barcelona, he failed to get game time, goals, and any kind of form. The ‘Decision’ made him appear rather absurd, and as a result, people either completely disregarded him or stopped talking about him. He returned to Atletico in 2021 on loan, but struggled there as well until a permanent contract was found in early October.

You would have noticed Griezmann gradually regaining his best form for Atletico since then if you had been paying attention. He would not be himself without the odd flare, but he also had a seriousness about him that was fitting for an experienced player. Once more, he was grinning and playing. And during the entire game, he continued to run, always at full speed.

When Deschamps saw what his man was doing at Atletico, he decided to use his most reliable player to fill some significant holes in his starting lineup because he had never lost faith in him.

Deschamps was in need of a player with a wide range of abilities in the middle of the field because Blaise Matuidi had retired and Paul Pogba and N’Golo Kante, two of the best central pivot players in the world, were injured. That is why Griezmann may frequently be seen in Qatar, if you keep a look out for him.

He occasionally works the strings from the hole, just behind Giroud. He carries the ball out of defense at other times. Alternatively, he may be wide, keeping his shape as Dembele or Mbappe charge into the box. Alternatively, he can run it out of his own box and dribble into the opponent’s third.

Or, to assist in setting up a goal, he makes excellent challenges within his own box and pings the ball out of the back like a deep-lying regista.

That is our moment of the day in honor of this underappreciated genius and the several circumstances that came together to make it possible.


Luis Rubiales FIFA Ban: Three-Year Prohibition by FIFA



Luis Rubiales delivering a speech at a press conference

The global governing body of football, FIFA, delivered a strong message on Monday as it issued the Luis Rubiales FIFA ban, prohibiting former Spanish football federation chief Luis Rubiales from all activities related to the sport for a period of three years. This consequential decision comes in the wake of a controversy that emerged during the Women’s World Cup earlier this year. Reports revealed that Rubiales was found guilty of gross misconduct, specifically for an incident that overshadowed Spain’s victory at the World Cup trophy ceremony in Sydney.

The Controversial Incident

A disciplinary committee was promptly assembled to investigate the disturbing incident, yet the specifics of the verdict have not been disclosed to the public. Rubiales faced severe charges related to what FIFA described as a violation of the “basic rules of decent conduct” and “behaving in a way that brings the sport of football and/or FIFA into disrepute.” The episode in question pertains to an incident where Rubiales forcibly kissed a Spanish player on the lips during the trophy ceremony, tainting what should have been a moment of triumph for the nation’s football team.

Misconduct and Resignation

The aftermath of the incident was marked by Rubiales’s initial defiance and refusal to acknowledge any wrongdoing, leading to a prolonged period of controversy. However, mounting pressure from various quarters, including the Spanish government and the national team players, eventually forced Rubiales to resign from his esteemed position within the Spanish football hierarchy. The incident not only tarnished Rubiales’s reputation but also cast a shadow over the accomplishments of the national team.

Ban and Appeal

While the FIFA ban on Luis Rubiales has been imposed for a duration of three years, Rubiales still has the option to contest the verdict. FIFA has granted him a window of ten days to request a review of the decision, following which he can file an appeal with the governing body. It remains to be seen how Rubiales will proceed in light of this substantial ban.

Luis Rubiales wearing a black blazer at an event

The Response and Controversy

Despite facing widespread backlash, Rubiales has garnered some support, notably from his mother, Angeles Bejar. In a bold demonstration of solidarity, she initiated a hunger strike to protest what she described as “the inhumane and bloody hunt” against her son. While some may sympathize with Rubiales, the gravity of the incident and the subsequent ban imposed by FIFA underscore the importance of maintaining integrity and respect within the world of professional sports.

In conclusion, FIFA’s decisive action against Luis Rubiales serves as a reminder that no individual, regardless of their position, is above the fundamental values of respect and sportsmanship that form the bedrock of football’s global community. As the sport continues to evolve, the need for upholding ethical standards remains paramount, ensuring that the spirit of fair play and camaraderie endures for generations to come.

Continue Reading


Rubiales Scandal: Soccer’s Integrity Unveiled



Rubiales and Jenni Hermoso

Exploring the Rubiales Scandal and Its Implications
In the world of soccer, where triumphs and controversies intertwine, the recent incident involving the president of the Spanish soccer federation, Luis Rubiales, has ignited a fiery debate. Reports from Spanish media suggest that Rubiales might resign from his position after five years of leading the body. The controversy stems from an episode where he kissed a player during a celebration and his subsequent actions during a significant match. This article delves into the details of the incident, the potential repercussions, and the broader implications for both Rubiales and the soccer community.

The Kiss that Stirred Controversy
The Spanish soccer federation president found himself in hot water due to an unexpected gesture. Following Spain’s victory in the Women’s World Cup final, Rubiales kissed player Jenni Hermoso on the lips during the trophy and medal ceremony. This gesture, intended to be celebratory, quickly became the center of attention and sparked a wave of discussions.
The incident prompted FIFA, the global governing body of soccer, to intervene. FIFA’s disciplinary committee initiated an inquiry to determine whether Rubiales’ actions violated the organization’s code of conduct and brought the sport and FIFA into disrepute. The core issue here is whether Rubiales’ behavior aligns with the principles of decency expected from a soccer official.

Amidst the uproar, reports surfaced indicating that Rubiales might step down from his role as the president of the Spanish soccer federation. The speculation has fueled further debates about whether resignation is an appropriate response to the controversy. If Rubiales indeed resigns, it would mark the end of his five-year tenure at the helm of the organization.The incident has drawn mixed reactions from both the public and the players. While some view the kiss as a harmless expression of celebration, others see it as an inappropriate breach of professional boundaries. Player Jenni Hermoso expressed discomfort with the kiss, and the national players’ union, once led by Rubiales, called for accountability regarding his actions.
FIFA issued a statement reaffirming its commitment to upholding the integrity of all individuals associated with the sport. The organization condemned any behavior that contradicts this commitment. While FIFA did not specify the exact acts under investigation, their emphasis on maintaining the sport’s reputation is clear.
Beyond the kiss, Rubiales’ conduct during the match drew attention. He was seen making a gesture by grabbing his crotch as a victory celebration. This action further added to the controversy, raising questions about appropriate behavior for a soccer official, especially in the presence of dignitaries.
The FIFA disciplinary panel has the authority to impose various sanctions on individuals found in violation of its code of conduct. These sanctions can range from warnings and fines to suspensions from soccer-related activities. The severity of the punishment will depend on the outcome of the investigation and the panel’s assessment of the situation.
Luis Rubiales holds the position of vice president at UEFA, the governing body for soccer in Europe. This role carries both prestige and responsibilities. The controversy has yet to garner a response from UEFA president Aleksander Čeferin, leaving the soccer community curious about the organization’s stance on the issue.
Rubiales is currently spearheading a bid to host the men’s World Cup in 2030, a joint effort involving Spain, Portugal, Morocco, and possibly Ukraine. However, his involvement in the Rubiales Scandal has raised concerns about the bid’s viability and the image projected to potential supporters.
The incident has wider implications for both the Spanish soccer federation and the broader soccer landscape. It highlights the importance of maintaining professionalism and ethical conduct within the sport’s leadership. The outcome of this controversy could set a precedent for addressing similar situations in the future.
As the Spanish soccer federation holds an emergency meeting to address the situation, the soccer community awaits a decision. The meeting’s outcome will not only impact Rubiales’ future but also shape the federation’s trajectory. The controversies surrounding this incident underscore the need for open discussions about behavior expectations and consequences.
The Rubiales Scandal serves as a reminder that even in the world of sports, actions can have far-reaching consequences. The incident involving the kiss and subsequent gestures has ignited discussions about leadership, professionalism, and the image projected by soccer officials. As FIFA investigates the matter, the soccer community anticipates the outcome and the potential shifts it may bring.

Continue Reading


Vlahovic Double Helps Juventus beat Salernitana 3-0.



Dusan Vlahovic

Juventus beat Salernitana 3-0 in Serie A on Tuesday, with striker Dusan Vlahovic scoring two goals and setting up another to lift the visitors to 10th in the table.

Vlahovic, a Serb who has been injured a lot this season but played in the league for the first time since October, found his old form again in this match.

Hans Nicolussi gave Juventus a penalty kick when he sent Manuel Locatelli off in the 26th minute. Vlahovic converted the penalty.

Vlahovic almost scored a second goal in the 37th minute, but his shot from the edge of the box from an acute angle went just past the post.

At the end of the first half, Filip Kostic made it 2-0 when he tapped the ball in from close range after Vlahovic’s initial shot had bounced into his path.

In the last seconds before the halftime break, Locatelli ran into the penalty area unchallenged and gave Juventus a chance to score a third goal. However, Salernitana goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa reacted quickly to prevent Locatelli from lobbing the ball over him.

80 seconds into the second half, Vlahovic scored his second goal when he ran through the penalty area and shot the ball flat into the right corner.

In the 51st minute, Junior Zambia hit a cross that reached almost everyone in the box, but Salernitana striker Boulaye Dia could not stretch far enough to put the ball in the open net.

“The team responded well and we played a good first half. But after taking a 3-0 lead, we got a little too comfortable and allowed too many shots on goal. We did not move enough and stayed in the same places, and the players know we have to do better,” Allegri said.

“In the first 10 minutes we played the ball too often down the right side. We need to improve the passing game, become more supple and keep things simple.”

Angel Di Maria hit the crossbar after 53 minutes and Moise Kean hit the post just before the end of the game, preventing Juve from adding to their tally.

The win moved Juventus to 26 points after 21 games, while Salernitana dropped to 21 points and 16th place.

Continue Reading