Reuters Soccer Blog

Real Madrid battle French demons and knockout round jinx

February 21, 2011

SOCCER-SPAIN/Olympique Lyon’s Stade de Gerland has proved to be something of a graveyard for Real Madrid’s European ambitions over the last decade.

Forget the “purists” – Barcelona’s passing has an end game

February 18, 2011

SOCCER-CHAMPIONS/Having previously confessed to the heresy of being largely bored by the style of Spain’s “beautifully crafted” triumphs in the European championship and World Cup I went along to the Emirates on Wednesday fully primed to observe another dose of “football for the purist” guaranteed to keep me safely in my seat.

Will Arsenal get past Barca at the Nou Camp?

February 17, 2011

SOCCER-CHAMPIONS/Arsenal did a lot of things right in Wednesday’s fine 2-1 comeback win over Barcelona, not least finishing more clinically than their La Liga visitors, but it would be a big surprise if Barca were as generous in the return leg on March 8.

Can Shakhtar Donetsk gatecrash western Europe’s party?

February 17, 2011

SOCCER-CHAMPIONS/Shakhtar Donetsk’s impressive 3-2 win at AS Roma in their Champions League last 16, first leg match was perhaps overshadowed by Arsenal’s unlikely comeback against Barcelona on the same night, but it will have nonetheless reverberated around Europe.

Should the cup-tied rule be abolished in the Champions League?

February 16, 2011

SOCCER-CHAMPIONS/How AC Milan were crying out for the guile of Antonio Cassano or the tough tackling of Mark Van Bommel (who could have replaced Gennaro Gattuso before he lost his head) in Tuesday’s 1-0 home defeat by Tottenham Hotspur in the Champions League last 16 first leg.

Champions League returns — can anyone stop Barcelona?

February 15, 2011

SOCCER-CHAMPIONS/BUSQUETSHow we’ve missed the Champions League. It’s nine weeks since the line-up for the last 16 was completed and a couple of months since the draw offered up a handful of belting ties, including Inter Milan v Bayern Munich in a repeat of last season’s final.

Farewell Ronaldo, one of the game’s greats

February 14, 2011

SPORT SOCCER WORLDRonaldo has just made the official announcement that he is to retire with immediate effect, bringing to an end one of the great soccer stories.

Rooney strike — wonder goal or shinpad special?

February 14, 2011

SOCCER-ENGLAND/Wayne Rooney’s overhead scissors kick goal to win the Manchester derby at Old Trafford on Saturday has sparked a tidal wave of hyperbole in the British media, with “wonder goal” the most popular tag used to describe it.

Rooney wonder strike could make United’s season

February 12, 2011

SOCCER-ENGLAND/Wayne Rooney said it was his greatest goal and Alex Ferguson said he had never seen anything like it. Even opposition manager Roberto Mancini had to applaud.

from Left field:

West Ham given Olympic stadium nod but can soccer co-exist with track and field?

February 11, 2011

OLYMPICS-LONDON/STADIUMSo now we know: Premier League soccer club West Ham United will take over the Olympic Stadium in London following the 2012 Games, assuming there are no late objections from the British government or the city's mayor.