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Jul 5, 2014

Soccer-Ronaldo condemns “evil tackle” that put Neymar out of Cup

RIO DE JANEIRO, July 5 (Reuters) – Former Brazil striker Ronaldo has accused Colombia’s Juan Zuniga of an “evil, violent” tackle that has put Neymar out of the World Cup and said on Saturday he favoured tougher sanctions against violent play.

Ronaldo was at FIFA briefing with ex-Germany captain Lothar Matthaeus and former Italy skipper Fabio Cannavaro and, while there was good-natured sparring ahead of Tuesday’s semi-final between Brazil and Germany, he condemned defender Zuniga’s foul.

Jul 5, 2014

Neymar out of Cup as Brazil and Germany make semis

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – Hosts Brazil suffered a huge blow when they lost leading forward Neymar for the rest of the World Cup through injury on Friday as they set up an epic-looking semi-final against Europe’s biggest remaining team Germany.

Brazil’s poster-boy, in terrific form with four goals at the tournament, fractured a vertebra near the end of a 2-1 quarter-final win over Colombia and will be out for several weeks.

Jul 4, 2014

Germany break France’s World Cup hearts again

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – Germany broke French hearts for the third time in the World Cup when they triumphed 1-0 at the Maracana on Friday to become the first country to reach the semi-finals in four successive tournaments.

But, unlike the dramas of their memorable semi-final victories over France in Spain in 1982 and Mexico four years later, this success, secured by Mats Hummels’ 13th minute header, lacked real excitement and was based more on solid defending and team work.

Jul 4, 2014

Hummels goal puts Germany into World Cup semis

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – An early Mats Hummels header proved enough for Germany to beat France 1-0 in a tense, error-strewn and largely uninspiring World Cup quarter-final at the Maracana on Friday.

The defender scored the only goal of a match neither team ever took control of when he headed in a free kick from Toni Kroos after 13 minutes.

Jul 4, 2014

Soccer-Hummels goal puts Germany into World Cup semis

RIO DE JANEIRO, July 4 (Reuters) – An early Mats Hummels header proved enough for Germany to beat France 1-0 in a tense, error-strewn and largely uninspiring World Cup quarter-final at the Maracana on Friday.

The defender scored the only goal of a match neither team ever took control of when he headed in a free kick from Toni Kroos after 13 minutes.

Jul 3, 2014

FIFA anti-discrimination boss laments lack of abuse-spotters

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – FIFA’s anti-discrimination chief hit out at world soccer’s governing body on Thursday for not deploying staff specifically to tackle racist or homophobic abuse among fans at World Cup matches.

Jeffrey Webb said there was a “disconnect” between FIFA’s stated aim of stamping out discrimination at games and its failure to back a proposal to use trained staff in Brazil to investigate and report on cases.

Jul 3, 2014

Soccer-FIFA anti-discrimination boss laments lack of abuse-spotters

RIO DE JANEIRO, July 3 (Reuters) – FIFA’s anti-discrimination chief hit out at world soccer’s governing body on Thursday for not deploying staff specifically to tackle racist or homophobic abuse among fans at World Cup matches.

Jeffrey Webb said there was a “disconnect” between FIFA’s stated aim of stamping out discrimination at games and its failure to back a proposal to use trained staff in Brazil to investigate and report on cases.

Jul 2, 2014

Colombia, Costa Rica seek to join Bitter Sweet club

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – Colombia and Costa Rica will be trying to break into – and quickly escape from – an exclusive group of World Cup semi-finalists which could be known as the Bitter Sweet club.

There are only eight members and although Costa Rica and Colombia would be delighted to join it by beating the Netherlands and Brazil in the quarter-finals, they would just as quickly like to leave it again by winning their semis.

Jul 2, 2014

Soccer-Colombia, Costa Rica seek to join Bitter Sweet club

RIO DE JANEIRO, July 2 (Reuters) – Colombia and Costa Rica will be trying to break into – and quickly escape from – an exclusive group of World Cup semi-finalists which could be known as the Bitter Sweet club.

There are only eight members and although Costa Rica and Colombia would be delighted to join it by beating the Netherlands and Brazil in the quarter-finals, they would just as quickly like to leave it again by winning their semis.

Jul 2, 2014

Houllier welcomes idea of fourth substitute in extra time

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – The idea that a fourth substitute should be allowed in extra time should be re-submitted to the International Football Association Board (IFAB), the game’s law-making body, Gerard Houllier said on Wednesday.

Houllier, who has managed France and Liverpool among others, is the senior member of FIFA’s technical study group (TSG) which analyses trends and tactics at the World Cup.