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45 days to go: The World Cup’s first substitute – FIFA on GBP Sports

The 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ is getting closer – 45 days to go!

In less than two months’ time – on 14 June, to be precise – the 21st FIFA World Cup™ kicks off at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium, as the hosts take on Saudi Arabia.​

That leaves us plenty of time to enjoy a countdown. Between now and the start of the World Cup, we will take a closer look at a different statistic from the history of the tournament each day.​​​

45 minutes had passed in the Opening Match of the 1970 FIFA World Cup_™ _between Mexico and the Soviet Union when a truly historic event took place. During the half-time interval, Soviet Union head coach Gavriil Kachalin decided to make a substitution, newly introduced for that tournament, and sent on Anatoly Puzach in place of Viktor Serebryanikov for the second half.

Since then, substitutions have become a normal and even essential part of the World Cup. Every fan can remember numerous examples when a substitute came on to change the course of a match in a positive way, or when the switch completely disrupted the team’s play and a sure-fire victory turned into embarrassment.

A recent example of a perfectly executed substitution occurred at the 2014 World Cup Final between Germany and Argentina. As the minutes ticked away in normal time, Germany coach Joachim Low sent on Mario Gotze, who went on to score the only goal of the game in extra time, securing Die Mannschaft’s fourth world title.

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Instructors’ course helping develop futsal in Colombia – FIFA on GBP Sports

The legacy of the 2016 FIFA Futsal World Cup is still apparent in host country Colombia. A Futsal Instructors’ Coaching Course took place in Villavicencio from 16 April to 20 April, under the guidance of FIFA instructor Jose Maria Pazos Mendez.

Part of a wider project which started during Colombia 2016, the course is designed to provide futsal instructors – leaders at Member Association level – with an in-depth technical and tactical knowledge of the game.

This will then enable instructors to pass on this valuable knowledge to more coaches at national level, helping further develop futsal in Colombia.

Thirty-five attended the course from different regions in the country.

“FIFA initially worked solely with coaches but now we are shifting our focus to work with instructors,” said FIFA Beach Soccer and Futsal Development Manager Brent Rahim. “With this philosophy, we have a better chance to help instructors transmit the knowledge acquired from FIFA Instructors to even more coaches.”

A second Futsal Instructors’ Coaching Course will take place next month from 15 to 19 May. A recipient of April’s course will be selected to instruct the coaching course, while a FIFA Instructor will attend as an observer to assist with the implementation of the course.

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Young stars shine at CECAFA Under-17 Championship thanks to FIFA Forward – FIFA on GBP Sports

A new generation of emerging footballing talent from East and Central Africa was on show this weekend as the CECAFA Under-17 Championship came to an exciting conclusion.

Playing in front of a capacity crowd at the Ngozi Stadium in Burundi, Tanzania edged out Somalia 2-0 in the final to lift the trophy, which saw both sides involved in a high-octane game including several goal-scoring opportunities for both teams.

The final was a particularly symbolic and significant one for the team from Somalia and marked the culmination of three years of continued investment and work developing youth football in the country.

The results of the development work are also a major boost for Somalia as it looks to rebuild following the civil war that has affected the country over recent decades.

Through tailor-made support and investment delivered through FIFA’s Forward Programme, which included investment of around USD 2 million over three years alongside the provision of football equipment, the Somali Football Federation (SFF) has established a dedicated youth league to give children under the age of 15 more opportunities to play football, as well as to provide a range of training courses which aim to help develop and train referees and coaches in the country.

The investment in youth development certainly appears to be paying off with the young Somali team producing several impressive results and upsets along the way to Sunday’s final.

Speaking of FIFA’s development work, FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura said: “In line with our overall vision to promote and grow the game, FIFA Forward aims to give tailored support to member associations and make a real impact in driving football development around the globe. As FIFA Secretary General, I would like to extend my congratulations to the teams from Somalia and Tanzania on making the final and their success in developing a new generation of players, as well as to Burundi for hosting such a successful CECAFA Under-17 Championship.”

Indeed, the continued success of the Forward Programme was further underlined with the hosting and delivery of the CECAFA Under-17 Championship, which was supported by FIFA’s zonal funding.

Samoura added: “The success of the CECAFA Under-17 Championship and the participating teams underlines the impact that FIFA’s development work is continuing to make, as well as our continued commitment to support member associations and further grow and develop the game around the world.”

Somali Football Federation President Abdiqani Said Arab also commented on impressive achievements of the young Somali team, saying: “I would like to thank the boys for their high profile performance. We have been able to produce these talented boys with the help of FIFA, who have financed our domestic youth league since 2016. So thanks to FIFA for their assistance.”

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BEST FOOTBALL VINES – NEW 2018 – GOALS, SKILLS, FAILS #8

by Joga Bonito

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FIFA World Cup Trophy Tour at the finish line – FIFA on GBP Sports

On 1 May, the FIFA World Cup Original Trophy will return to Russia, the host country of the upcoming 21st FIFA World Cup™. There it will visit nine remaining cities: Vladivostok, Novosibirsk, Ekaterinburg, Samara, Kazan, Nizhny Novgorod, Rostov-on-Don, Saint Petersburg and Moscow, making it the longest host country tour in history. The return of the Trophy to Russia heralds the beginning of final preparations for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia and will mark the 45-days-to-go milestone to the planet’s premier football event.

“The global leg of the Trophy Tour concluded on 30 April after a memorable last stop in Japan,” commented FIFA Chief Commercial Officer Philippe Le Floc’h. “During a global journey that began on 22 January 2018, the FIFA World Cup Trophy visited 51 countries across six continents and gave over 330 000 football fans around the world an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see the Original Trophy up close. We are very excited about the results so far and, together with our partner Coca-Cola, are looking forward to continuing the Trophy Tour across another nine cities in Russia ahead of the FIFA World Cup kick-off on 14 June,” he added.

The Trophy Tour is a rare opportunity for fans to see the Original Trophy up close and have the experience captured with a photograph. It is an exciting and unique experience since the Trophy is otherwise only displayed at the FIFA World Football Museum in Zurich.

“The FIFA World Cup Trophy Tour by Coca-Cola is the greatest experiential marketing event in the world of football, and Coca-Cola is proud to make it possible. By bringing the original FIFA World Cup Trophy to 91 cities in 51 countries, 25 of which had never hosted the Trophy before, we have helped millions of football fans around the world get #ReadyFor the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia,“ said Coca-Cola Vice-President Ricardo Fort.

This is the fourth time that FIFA have organised the Trophy Tour alongside partner company Coca-Cola. It was first staged ahead of the 2006 FIFA World Cup™ in Germany and, as part of the build-up to the tournament ever since, the tour has allowed people all around the world to feel part of the upcoming festival of football. In September 2017, the FIFA World Cup™ Trophy Tour by Coca-Cola kicked off at the tournament’s main venue, the Luzhniki stadium in Moscow, travelling three months in the host country and visiting 16 Russian cities including Saransk, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, and Sochi.

On 22 January, the global leg of the FIFA World Cup™ Trophy Tour by Coca-Cola started with an official launch ceremony in London, before visiting international 66 cities, across 50 countries and 6 continents, travelling 146,835 kilometres and giving more than 146 000 football fans the chance to experience football’s most coveted prize. In total, the Original Trophy has been seen by over 330 000 football fans around the world from September till April.

With each edition of the Tour, the number of countries and cities visited increases, ensuring more and more supporters get to see the coveted trophy up close.

For the latest updates from the FIFA World Cup™ Trophy Tour by Coca-Cola, including upcoming tour destinations and dates, exclusive interviews, photos and videos, visit FIFA.com and the Tour’s official Facebook and Instagram pages.

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FIFA World Cup Trophy Tour at the finish line – FIFA on GBP Sports

On 1 May, the FIFA World Cup Original Trophy will return to Russia, the host country of the upcoming 21st FIFA World Cup™. There it will visit nine remaining cities: Vladivostok, Novosibirsk, Ekaterinburg, Samara, Kazan, Nizhny Novgorod, Rostov-on-Don, Saint Petersburg and Moscow, making it the longest host country tour in history. The return of the Trophy to Russia heralds the beginning of final preparations for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia and will mark the 45-days-to-go milestone to the planet’s premier football event.

“The global leg of the Trophy Tour concluded on 30 April after a memorable last stop in Japan,” commented FIFA Chief Commercial Officer Philippe Le Floc’h. “During a global journey that began on 22 January 2018, the FIFA World Cup Trophy visited 51 countries across six continents and gave over 330 000 football fans around the world an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see the Original Trophy up close. We are very excited about the results so far and, together with our partner Coca-Cola, are looking forward to continuing the Trophy Tour across another nine cities in Russia ahead of the FIFA World Cup kick-off on 14 June,” he added.

The Trophy Tour is a rare opportunity for fans to see the Original Trophy up close and have the experience captured with a photograph. It is an exciting and unique experience since the Trophy is otherwise only displayed at the FIFA World Football Museum in Zurich.

“The FIFA World Cup Trophy Tour by Coca-Cola is the greatest experiential marketing event in the world of football, and Coca-Cola is proud to make it possible. By bringing the original FIFA World Cup Trophy to 91 cities in 51 countries, 25 of which had never hosted the Trophy before, we have helped millions of football fans around the world get #ReadyFor the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia,“ said Coca-Cola Vice-President Ricardo Fort.

This is the fourth time that FIFA have organised the Trophy Tour alongside partner company Coca-Cola. It was first staged ahead of the 2006 FIFA World Cup™ in Germany and, as part of the build-up to the tournament ever since, the tour has allowed people all around the world to feel part of the upcoming festival of football. In September 2017, the FIFA World Cup™ Trophy Tour by Coca-Cola kicked off at the tournament’s main venue, the Luzhniki stadium in Moscow, travelling three months in the host country and visiting 16 Russian cities including Saransk, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, and Sochi. 

On 22 January, the global leg of the FIFA World Cup™ Trophy Tour by Coca-Cola started with an official launch ceremony in London, before visiting international 66 cities, across 50 countries and 6 continents, travelling 146,835 kilometres and giving more than 146 000 football fans the chance to experience football’s most coveted prize. In total, the Original Trophy has been seen by over 330 000 football fans around the world from September till April.

With each edition of the Tour, the number of countries and cities visited increases, ensuring more and more supporters get to see the coveted trophy up close.

For the latest updates from the FIFA World Cup™ Trophy Tour by Coca-Cola, including upcoming tour destinations and dates, exclusive interviews, photos and videos, visit FIFA.com and the Tour’s official Facebook and Instagram pages.

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Black Stars halt Germany’s title charge – FIFA on GBP Sports

As kick-off at the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ edges closer every day, we at FIFA.com thought we would whet your appetite for the action.

With some outstanding games in store across June and July, we are going to focus in on highlights from some of the most memorable encounters from four years ago.

We were treated to excitement, drama, and an avalanche of goals at Brazil 2014, so what better way to get your imagination flowing for what may be around the corner this time!

Germany 2-2 Ghana
21 June, Estadio Castelao, Fortaleza

Coming off the back of a thumping 4-0 win over Portugal, Germany had already set out their stall as one of the tournament favourites, ahead of their second Group G encounter. Ghana, meanwhile, had been beaten by a late USA goal, with defeat threatening to end any hopes of reliving their South Africa 2010 heroics.

Having clashed four years ago, with Germany coming out on top, as well as reprising the storyline of brothers Jerome and Kevin-Prince Boateng facing off against each other, the stage was set in Fortaleza for an exciting encounter that did not disappoint.

When all was said and done in Brazil, Ghana stood as the only side to end a game with a share of the spoils against the eventual champions.

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Thirteen video assistant referees appointed for 2018 FIFA World Cup™ – FIFA on GBP Sports

The FIFA Referees Committee has selected 13 referees who will act solely as video assistant referees (VARs) during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™.

The selection criteria for these VARs were primarily based on their experience as video match officials in their respective association and confederation competitions, in addition to their successful participation in several preparatory seminars and FIFA competitions, where they enhanced their VAR knowledge and skills by using the system.

Each match at the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ will have a VAR together with three assistants, AVAR1, AVAR2, AVAR3 (for more information about the different roles and tasks of the VAR team please check fifa.com/VAR).

In addition to these 13 referees who will act solely as video assistant referees, some of the referees and assistant referees who have been selected for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ (see list published on 29 March using the link below) will also act as video match officials during FIFA’s flagship competition. These appointments will be confirmed before each match.

List of video match officials for the 2018 FIFA World Cup™
List of match officials for the 2018 FIFA World Cup™

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Replacing England’s lost caps – FIFA on GBP Sports

At the conclusion of England’s disappointing 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ campaign, the Three Lions had three vastly-experienced players on the pitch: Frank Lampard (106 caps), Steven Gerrard (114 caps) and Wayne Rooney (119 caps). Those three players will not, however, line up for Gareth Southgate on 18 June against Tunisia, with Gerrard and Lampard having retired from football altogether, and Rooney having departed the international scene.

FIFA.com takes a look at who Southgate could call upon in his squad for Russia 2018 to fill this trio’s big shoes, and replace those lost caps.

Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard (combined 220 caps, 50 goals upon retirement)
The candidates to replace them in Russia:

Dele Alli
Described by Gareth Southgate as a “sniffer”, someone who can smell out an opportunity and arrive in the penalty area at just the right time, Alli is comparable to Lampard in that respect. His goalscoring record at club level (approximately one goal per three games), is also reasonably similar to Lampard’s, but he has some catching up to do at international level (two goals in 23 matches as of 30 April 2018).

Eric Dier
Much less cavalier than Lampard in his attacking forays, but represents something similar to Gerrard in his latter years, when the Liverpool legend sat in a deeper role. Dier’s education in the Sporting CP academy has given him an air of unflappability, and he is comfortable in a number of positions including in the centre of defence. Has a good range of passing, which allows him to set more attack-minded team-mates free in the final third.

Jordan Henderson
Has replaced Gerrard at club level as Liverpool captain but represents a different type of midfielder to the former England No4. He relentlessly presses the opposition as high up the pitch as his position allows and looks to put his teammates on the front foot as quickly as possible. Like both Gerrard and Lampard, he can hit efforts from distance, but is not a natural goalscorer.

Jack Wilshere
Would represent something of a joker in Southgate’s pack were he to board the plane to Russia, having played no games in World Cup qualifying due to injury and form at club level. The Arsenal man is a creative schemer, who can travel box-to-box as Lampard did. His goalscoring record leaves something to be desired, but he is capable of unlocking any defence on his day.

Wayne Rooney (119 caps, 53 goals upon retirement)
The candidates to replace him in Russia:

Jesse Lingard
A livewire, whose unpredictability makes him a good option for Southgate, Lingard has come into his own at Rooney’s former club Manchester United this season. He is in some ways similar to Rooney in his younger years: somebody with good awareness just outside the penalty area, with the ability to beat a man either with trickery and pace, or with an incisive one-two.

Raheem Sterling
Used by Pep Guardiola at Manchester City in a variety of positions, Sterling has done well for England, directly replacing one of Rooney’s final Three Lions roles as the No10 behind a primary striker. His link-up play with Harry Kane needs work, but Sterling is an undoubted threat when picking the ball up just inside the final third and running at defences. Has also had a terrific goalscoring season for City that he will be hoping converts to the international arena.

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Lionel Messi ● Best Skills of April 2018 ● Goals/Assists/Dribbling/Passes ● HD

by NugoBasilaiaa

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