door lw789 wo 16 mei 2018, 10:21
There he was once again in space in the middle of the field. He took one quick look to the left, before firmly fixing his wide eyes on to his team-mate with the ball. He didnt just want the ball, he demanded it and his team-mates knew it too. A look from him and they knew they should give him the ball. The ball rolled towards him incredibly slowly in his mind, so slowly he was able to take a quick look to his right before he felt the ball grace against his right boot. Immediately he took a touch forward, keeping his head up to see the run, although he already knew it was coming, and as he dribbled deep into the opponents territory he waited until the perfect moment to supply the pass through the defenders and on to the rushing teammate. The pace of the pass was so precise, Jordi Alba only had to touch it once to settle himself before slotting home. 2-0 Spain. In the 41st minute that night in Kiev, Xavi Hernandez became the first player ever to assist in two different European Championship finals, but the pass that cemented that stat meant so much more than achieving a football first through an assist statistic. Xavi knew what the world knew at that moment. Spain, who hadnt given up a single goal in any of their previous nine knockout games at the Euros or World Cup, certainly were not going to concede twice to Italy that night. Xavis magnificent pass had secured their victory and put them amongst the greatest national teams to ever play the game. Spain would go on to win 4-0 with Xavi again providing a key assist for the third goal. Andres Iniesta, who is far more than a teammate to Xavi, rightly was handed man of the match to cap a marvellous tournament, but in terms of raising his game for the big occasion no one did it better than Xavi that night. Xavi and Spain had spent most of the tournament in third gear but when the midfield maestro stepped it up, so did the team. It has been the story of Xavis career. The previous summer in the Champions League final at Wembley, a theatre he loved because of how much be embraced the sports history, Xavi had the keys to unlock the opposition. Once again he had found space, this time between the lines, but as he attacked Manchester United had his options covered. Still Xavi waited, ever the ball treasurer, the Spaniard let Lionel Messi make a run to drag Patrice Evra central, exposing a bit of space for Pedro to run into. Xavi saw the space first and placed another perfect ball that allowed the eventual goalscorer to take one simple touch before firing home. Another assist and another completely masterful performance on the games biggest stage. In the summer of 2010, Xavi made more passes and more accurate passes than any player at the World Cup (599/669), yet his most crucial one comes from a corner against Germany in the semi final, one that landed on the head of Carles Puyol, to help power Spain into their first ever World Cup final. A few days later, Xavi lifted the World Cup after his footballing soul mate, Iniesta, scored the games only goal. After that win in South Africa, UEFA President Michel Platini did not ask for Iniestas winning shirt. He asked, and received, the shirt of Xavi. The same Xavi who in the summer of 2009, again in the Champions League final, placed a magnificent ball on to the head of Lionel Messi who nodded it past Edwin van der Sar. Messi did not win man of the match that day, Xavi did. The same Xavi, a summer earlier, that got it all started for Spain, who changed their identity from perennial underachievers to winners, when he placed a wonderful ball through to Fernando Torres to score the games only goal. Xavi has been around long enough to know what it was like when both his teams struggled, yet he, more than any other player, helped them both reach the top of the sports mountain. When the footballing genius eventually calls it a career his legacy will be reflected by the incredible impact and importance he had for his teams in big games. Xavi is simply not just a player who won everything there is to win with club and country. He is a player that dictated their identity; an identity and style that helped both Barcelona and Spain dominate. Two days prior to his Kiev display, the artist stood in front of the worlds media and had to answer a question on whether that style was boring. "If we are boring but we are winning, that is fantastic for us. We will keep playing our game, we are not bored." How could he be? The victory in Kiev was Xavis 17th winners medal in four years. In between the Euro 2008 and 2012 victories, he and Iniesta had won a World Cup, two Champions League titles, three Spanish league crowns, three Spanish Super Cups, two Spanish Cups, two European Super Cups and two World Club Cups. Since he has won another league title and a Spanish Super Cup all done in a style far from boring. "We go out from the first moment looking for the ball and looking to put pressure on the opposition. If you are not going to pass the ball then why play the game. That is not football in my opinion," Xavi explaind. ‘For another coach — someone like (Javier) Clemente or (Fabio) Capello — they may have another idea of football but it is good that the Barcelona idea works. What were Holland looking for in the World Cup final? A Robben counter-attack? Penalties? We won a lot of games 1-0 but it was the opposition that were boring, not us." Xavi turned 34 last month and played in his 700th game for Barcelona. He has played more games in the five-and-a-half seasons than anyone yet there are very few signs of weariness. "I dont want to miss any games, but I see the need to dose my efforts a bit more," he said recently. "Maybe in Spain people get carried away when a player reaches 30, but this is the best I have felt in my career. More mature, physically better. It is because I have learned things." Xavis football brain will carry him into his senior years and well beyond his playing days, likely into a job as Barcelona coach one day, but while he has his legs we still have opportunities to watch him play. It is these opportunities, as football lovers, that we must grab. We are the guardians of future history and when we are asked in years to come what was Xavi like? it will be down to us to explain to the next generation what a magnificent, complete player he was. Unfortunately, in Canada we are robbed of seeing him play every week on domestic television but next week the Champions League presents us all with another opportunity to watch him. There, of course, is one other window of opportunity that could burst open for North American fans. "Rumours about moving to Qatar or New York this year? My wish is to stay here until the end of my contract. Im not moving," said Xavi recently. That would take him to the summer of 2016, by which point he will be 36. Xavi is smart enough to know that will likely be too old to be a major player in such a technical style that both his club and country play. However, a move to MLS when he is 36 would give him a great opportunity to compete for a couple more winners medals while playing into his late thirties. Xavis path to the United States could be boosted by what his friend and mentor, Pep Guardiola, decided to do when he took a sabbatical from coaching last season and came to New York. Xavi, who was kept out of the side by Guardiola when he was young and almost moved because he couldnt get in ahead of him, went on to be a very different player (occupied further forward to make those key assists) thanks to Frank Rijkaards progressive thinking but has always had a special bond with his former teammate and coach. Ferran Soriano and Txiki Begiristains primary job is to succeed with Manchester City, but the former Barcelona executives will play a crucial role in the success of new MLS team, New York City FC, as 80% of that club is owned by the Premier League club. Xavi has every right to stay focused on the tasks at hand in his homeland right now. After all, in the next four months, he has a Champions League and a Spanish Cup to try and regain and a La Liga and World Cup to try to defend but when he is 36 he will have a decision to make and it is difficult to imagine him choosing retirement. He would be magnificent in Major League Soccer. Of all the current players in the game today, not named Ronaldo or Messi, he would be the one I would want to watch play in North America. A recent twitter poll of this question saw just 2 of 100 answer Xavi (with Zlatan Ibrahimovic being the overwhelming popular answer) but then again the Spanish maestro is used to being in the shadows of the true superstars. Less than 18 months ago I went to Barcelona to watch them play, excited to see Messi and my favourite, Iniesta, play. Not for the first time, Xavi crashed the party putting on a passing clinic in midfield. Enjoy him while he is still playing at a high level, folks. Spain have created many wonderful footballers, but on January 25th, 1980, Xavi Hernandez i Creus, the greatest of them all, was born. He grew to be a footballing giant at 5ft 7 inches, who played a major role in the way the game was played. One can only hope the last chapter of this fabulous footballing life can one day be written in North America. Just think of the ways the league and its players could benefit. DeSean Jackson Jersey .Commissioner Adam Silver said Wednesday it is inevitable that the league will one day take after European sports and have sponsor names on team jerseys. Jacquizz Rodgers Jersey . Cory Batey and Brandon Vandenburg were each convicted on four charges of aggravated rape, one of attempted aggravated rape and two for aggravated sexual battery. Vandenburg was also found guilty of tampering with evidence as well as an unlawful photography charge. http://www.authenticbuccaneersstoreonli ... ns-Jersey/. Gomes drove in all three runs, including a go-ahead two-run homer in the eighth inning, and Cleveland rallied for a 3-2 win over the Chicago White Sox on Sunday. Brent Grimes Jersey . Next up, the Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Pittsburgh Steelers, and Cleveland Browns in the AFC North. Baltimore Ravens In 2014, the 8-8 season that the Baltimore Ravens experienced was to be expected. Davonte Lambert Jersey . - Jesse Shynkaruk scored a hat trick as the Moose Jaw Warriors snapped a seven-game losing streak with an 8-2 win over the Prince Albert Raiders in Western Hockey League action on Saturday.The battle for the Premier League title has gripped the nation. Can Leicester City pull off one of the most remarkable shocks in history? Tottenham, Arsenal and Manchester City also remain in the hunt for the crown as the season enters the final straight.Spurs sit five points off the summit in second, while Arsenal are eight adrift and Man City - who have a game in hand - are 10 points behind Leicester. Premier League table Team Games played Points Goal difference Leicester 29 60 21 Tottenham 29 55 27 Arsenal 29 52 16 Man City 28 50 21 Ahead of this weekends Premier League action - including Manchester Citys trip to Norwich and Leicesters Monday night clash with Newcastle, which are both live on Sky Sports - Jamie Redknapp has his say on the title contenders…Leicester Leicester are entering uncharted territory, says Jamie Redknapp Leicester have risen to every challenge theyve faced this season. And when theyve had set-backs theyve bounced back quickly. There was a great quote from Riyad Mahrez, saying the team felt more pressure when they were battling relegation than they do right now. Thats a great position to be in.However, one thing we dont know about this Leicester team is how they will react as they edge closer to potentially pulling off an incredible title win. Theyre not Manchester United in the Ferguson era. Theyre not Chelsea when they were winning league titles. This is uncharted territory.We havent seen this before. Its amazing. Ive grown up always believing the big clubs, with the most money, win. Even Blackburn, when they won the title, spent a lot of money and had the best players. This is like no other. But things can change quickly in football. When Liverpool beat Man City a few years ago, when Brendan Rodgers side were going for the title, you thought theyd win the league. Then boom, it all changed.Its difficult to put your finger on what changes it but its that momentum shift which happens so quickly in sport, not just football. It happens in tennis, in golf. When you think someones won, things can still turn around.There are still 27 points to play for and thats an awful lot of points - and a lot of time in which a lot of mistakes could be made. But all of the neutrals in the country are behind Leicester. Tottenham Tottenham must put recent setbacks behind them Mauricio Pochettino got some stick for making a number of changes against Borussia Dortmund in the Europa League on Thursday but they can turn their focus back to the Premier League now, knowing they have the chance to make history and change their club forever.Spurs are right in the mix for this title and if theyd turned a few of their 10 draws into wins, theyd be top of the table. Im expecting them to finish in the top four now - it would be a capitulation if they missed out on qualifying for the Champions League. But can they get back on track after some disappointing results? The title race run-in We analyse the title rivals run-ins to see who will emerge victorious... Theyve hit a small bump in the road, with defeat at West Ham followed by a draw against Arsenal, after the Gunners were reduced to 10 men, and the loss at Dortmund.dddddddddddd. But this is the time of the season where everyones stuttering.We are going to see some strange results, particularly now teams at the bottom are fighting for survival. The important thing for Tottenham is to not get stressed by whats happened in the last couple of weeks. Theyve not picked up any major injuries, Jan Vertonghen is coming back and they have a great chance to get back to winning ways at Aston Villa on Sunday.Arsenal Alexis Sanchezs equaliser against Tottenham could be key Theres a lot of negativity around Arsenal and Arsene Wenger in the press and in the stands at the moment but they cant be ruled out of this title race.In fact, I think their result at White Hart Lane could have changed everything for them. If they were beaten at Tottenham, it could have been so damaging to the manager - who you felt was under pressure - and the players. Alexis Sanchez was out of form, theyd picked up a couple of injuries - but now theyre back on track and, with the FA Cup this weekend, have the opportunity to rest some key men. Pundits player of the year The Soccer Saturday pundits pick their player of the season They are going to be knocked out of the Champions League by Barcelona - not many people doubt that - and that will free them up to focus on the Premier League and the FA Cup, should they get past Watford.They will drop points and slip up. But this season is like Rocky I, when theyre knocking each other down and getting back up again. The last team standing will lift the trophy.Man City Dont count Man City out yet, says Redknapp If you put yourself into the Leicester dressing room right now - wheres the danger? Which team do you fear the most?Tottenham havent won in three, including the cup games, and how damaging will that defeat against Dortmund be? Aston Villa looks like a gimme for them but they have tough games to come. Theres a good gap to Arsenal, and they also have some big away games ahead of them. But Man City - because theyve been there, seen it, done it - they would be the team that bother me the most, if I was a Leicester player. I know they will still be seven points behind if they win their game in hand but you look at their squad and think surely theyre going to go on a run.Im not saying City will go on a run but, if youre a Leicester player, thats what youll be thinking. Theoretically they could win every game and win the league. Until they cant mathematically do it I would still be nervous of them. ConclusionIts too tight to call who will win this Premier League. This season has made fools of us all. Leicester are five points clear - last season Chelsea would have been 1/5 to win the title from that position but Leicester are 11/10 with Sky Bet. That shows even the bookies arent sure whats going to happen.Its so fascinating - this weekend there are games youd expect the top teams in the title race to win but would it surprise you if there was an upset?The Premier League might not be the highest standard in Europe but it is the number one for excitement. There arent many leagues where you think a team in the bottom three could shock a team in the title race. Thats what makes the Premier League so special. No team has won the Premier League by spending the amount Leicester have. That makes you start having doubts and thinking someone else will rise to the top. But maybe not this year… Jamie Redknapp All of the neutrals would love Leicester to do it because its a great story. Its a wake-up call for other teams, in terms of finding players in lower leagues and their spending policy.The problem is its never happened before. No team has won the Premier League by spending the amount Leicester have done and that makes you start having doubts and thinking someone else will rise to the top. But maybe not this year…Who do you think will win the Premier League? Let us know using the message boards or by tweeting @SkyFootball Also See: The title race run-in Leicester champs, Spurs fourth? Pundits player of the year Citys woes against the best Cheap NFL Jerseys Authentic Discount NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys 2018 Cheap Jerseys 2018 Discount NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys From China Cheap Jerseys Free Shipping ' ' '