Crystal Palace midfielder Darren Ambrose gave his side a 1-0 lead in their Carling Cup quarterfinal against Manchester United with an absolute screamer to the top corner in the 65th minute. Man United equalized just four minutes later with a Kiko Macheda penalty, but Palace managed to score again in extra time to advance to a semifinal date with Cardiff.

Man United, unsurprisingly, went with a young side (plus Dimitar Berbatov) that just didn't get the job done, leaving Alex Ferguson atypically contrite and befuddled after the match.

From The Mirror:

"I don't know where to start, to be honest with you," said the gutted United manager. "I want to apologise to the fans because that was not a Manchester United performance.

"I don't want to take anything away from Crystal Palace, and I wish them every success and hope they get to the final because they put in a fantastic mammoth effort.

"Every one of their players worked their socks to get to the semi-final, but I'm very disappointed.

"I'm not going to go into the ins and outs of it, we were beaten and it was a very disappointing night for Manchester United."

He didn't blame the referee, he didn't berate the press, what has this man done with the real Alex Ferguson? Of course, a goal like Ambrose's will stun anyone into remorse.

Zlatan Ibrahimovics holiday wishlist

The holiday season is upon us and millions of boys and girls around the world are writing out their wishlists in the hopes that Santa Claus brings them everything they want. And footballers are no different. The following is a compilation of Zlatan Ibrahimovic's most desired items.

Attention fat man -- these are the things I require this Zlatanmas:

-For everyone to buy my book, I am Zlatan, and worship it as the holy scripture that it is.
-A European Cup.
-A blanket with sleeves.
-To continue being Zlatan.
-A new teammate to kick.
-For Pep Guardiola to live forever and get food poisoning every day for the rest of his life.
-For Shakira to sucked into a black hole and never return to this planet again.
-A 25 Amazon gift card.
-A new Tamagotchi.
-The Batman suit that has nipples on it (movie quality).
-For Pep Guardiola to win the lottery and then find out that the prize is malaria.
-A second blanket with sleeves.
-The sun. I want to own it.

Photo: Getty

Barcelona traffic sign warns of problems at Mou Camp

We're just 10 days away from the next Clasico/footballpocalypse, which makes this typo on a traffic sign posted along Barcelona's Ronda de Dalt all the more curious. Instead of warning of traffic restrictions near Barca's Camp Nou, it does so for the "Mou Camp."

Was this the work of Madridista hackers referencing Real manager Jose Mourinho or just a transit worker who did his typing a bit too fast? We may never know. Until Mourinho admits he did it himself.

Barcelona traffic sign warns of problems at Mou Camp

Photos: Marca, Reuters

DTotD: David Beckham wrecks Indonesian opponent in friendly

The LA Galaxy started their Asia Pacific tour (unofficially known as the "Last Chance to Milk Some Cash Out of David Beckham" tour) with a 1-0 win over an Indonesian National Selection team. Robbie Keane scored in the 14th minute to ensure yet another 1-0 success for his side.

While you might think the Galaxy players wouldn't take these matches seriously, especially just after winning the MLS Cup, but one man proved he definitely is not joking around on this tour: David Beckham. In the 7th minute, Beckham ran down Indonesia's Andik Vermansyah and smashed into him from behind with an angry two-footed lunge. It's unclear what Vermansyah did to deserve this treatment, but he must have said something mean about using a single digit number as a name for a baby. Video of the challenge right this way...

Between this and his piggyback ride on Carlo Costly in the MLS Cup final, it seems Davey is turning into Vinnie Jones in his old age.

After the match, David Beckham the goodwill ambassador once again took over and made a point to interrupt his post-match interview by calling Vermansyah over to trade shirts and share an awkward hug.

Photo: Getty

Paul Pogba and Ravel Morrison
Uniteds teenagers can fire United to Wembley, and help the senior squad to glory in both the Premier League and Champions League.

Thats the view of Michael Carrick, who is set to make way tonight for the latest group of Fergies fledglings as they host Crystal Palace in the quarter-final of the Carling Cup.

FA Youth Cup winners Paul Pogba, Ravel Morrison, Zeki Fryers, Larnell Cole, Jesse Lingard and Will and Michael Keane are all likely to be involved in some way as the Reds bid to reach the last four. And Carrick, who has a League Cup winners medal from 2010, is confident the new wave of Academy products can produce the goods.

I would back them to produce, definitely, said the midfielder. They certainly have the talent. They are good players. They wouldnt be threatening to play if they werent.

They have been doing things right, now it is about going to that next step. There are not loads of opportunities to come into the first team here, so the Carling Cup is probably the best way to establish yourself.

This is a great place to learn your trade. The manager is the best at guiding young players through when he sees they are ready. They have had little snippets before and I am sure they will do well if the manager puts them in.

The Carling Cup has been much derided in recent years, but Carrick insists winning the seasons first piece of silverware can be a major boost for the rest of the campaign.

There is no harm in getting into the habit of winning games, no matter what competition it is in, he said.

Some people have written it off as not being so important. But lifting that trophy in February gives you a great feeling. It gives you a lot of belief going into the end of the season, not just as players b! ut as a club.

Winning trophies it gives everyone a boost. It is something we are not taking lightly.

What do you think? Have your say.

Tuesday's match between Napoli and Juventus proved to be one of the best of the Serie A season thus far. Even if Juve didn't score twice in the final 20 minutes to come back from 3-1 down, the sequence of events in the 15th minute were more than enough entertainment for one evening.

After Andrea Pirlo tripped up Ezequiel Lavezzi just inside the box, Marek Hamsik converted the penalty for Napoli by blasting a low shot past Gigi Buffon's outstretched hand. Hamsik then decided to celebrate by running (and almost falling) down a set of stairs behind the goal. Once he emerged even more pleased with himself than when we last saw him, he put his hands through his EXTREME hair and...realized that he had to retake the penalty because there were about 17 guys in the box before he took his previous shot.

Suddenly way more subdued than half a second before, Hamsik went back to the spot and blasted his second attempt over the crossbar (which the commentator found hilarious). Unfortunately for him, that one counted. And as much as he probably wanted to, he did not go back down the stairs and disappear forever.

Just eight minutes later he did head in the first goal of the game, though. He also kept his celebration at pitch level.

All the stuff being covered outside the unfriendly confines of the award-winning Dirty Tackle...

This performance might make the Gallagher brothers reconsider their position as Man City fans. [YouTube]

Edinson Cavani goal causes a seismic shift in Naples. [KCKRS]

Heard in the Roma dressing room: "This isn't River!" "Well you're not Maradona!" [Football Italia]

Man of the Match -- you've got it all wrong. [Surreal Football]

The greatest French footballer ever is...not Zidane? [RoP]

Bumpy Pitch and Nike giving the NBA and NFL a bit of football flavor. [TOW]

Out of form Chelsea pour money into technology to make Frank Lampard younger. [The Gaffer]

Sergio Busquests: The frog who turned into a prince. [Studs Up]

Though Real Madrid made easy work of Atletico Madrid in Saturday's derby, Atletico decided to take out their frustration on their city rivals in the form of some harsh challenges. Five Atletico players were shown yellow cards, two more were sent off with straight reds and Cristiano Ronaldo was left with a sprained ankle as a result.

So you can imagine his surprise when just a couple of days later, at the AS awards gala, Cristiano found himself seated at the same table as Atletico president Enrique Cerezo.

Immediately making hard feelings worse, Cerezo shook hands with Ronaldo's agent and not Ronaldo himself while the player hilariously stared daggers at him. Ronaldo then asked Cerezo about the kicks in the game, while making a hand motion referencing the chop to the legs he received, and Cerezo argued that Real did their share too. "Pepe, [Ricardo] Carvalho, [Sergio] Ramos, the short guy with a lot of hair..." Cerezo said, pretending to forget Marcelo's name.

"You're talking about the best in the world," Ronaldo shot back. He then gave the back of Cerezo's head an impressive death stare.

If Cerezo followed this up by chanting "Messi, Messi" this probably would have come to blows. And judging by the convenient presence of the camera filming all this, I'm guessing that's exactly what AS had in mind when they made up the seating chart.

DT Exclusive: Didier Drogbas process for finding a new team

Didier Drogba isn't getting any younger, so with that in mind, his agent, Thierno Seydi turned down a one-year extension with Chelsea as well as a loan with an option to buy from Milan. "At Didier's age, he has nothing left to prove as a player. He will go where he is offered the most money," he bluntly told The Sun. "Once you are well into your thirties you have to go to a club where you can be certain you'll be able to pay your bills." The following is a transcript of how we imagine Didier fielded offers.

Drogba: Thank you all for entering the Didier Drogba Sweepstakes. Since I am 33 years old and this will probably be my last contract before I retire, I have decided to make this simple. Whoever gives me the most money wins. Chelsea, you go first.

Chelsea: Well, Didier, we've been through a lot together and we'd love to keep you for another year. We'll certainly offer you good money, too.

Drogba: That's not enough. You lose. Milan, your turn.

Milan: We've admired you for years, Didier. But we'd like to take you on loan first and see if Zlatan can go more than three days without trying to kill you. We'll offer you decent money.

Drogba: Noooooooooooooooooo! LA Galaxy -- go.

Galaxy: If we lose David Beckham, we'll have a lot of free cash to spend. Of course, since Entertainment Tonight doesn't know who you are, we wouldn't give you the same ! money we gave Beckham. Also, be warned that the league will fine you any time you call something a "f***ing disgrace" or do anything interesting.

Drogba: That's a corporatized f***ing disgrace! Anzhi, now you.

Anzhi: We actually don't have that much money, but we can offer you the chance to fulfill your dream of playing in Dagestan. ... Hahaha! That was a joke. We will give you so much money that you will willingly burn some of it just to reduce it to a number that actually sounds real.

Drogba: That sounds interesting, but I'm still not sold. Random team in Qatar, what do you have to offer?

Random team in Qatar: We will give you all of the money.

Drogba: All of it?

Random team in Qatar: All of it. Your bank balance will be the infinity symbol followed by a smiley face.

Carlos Tevez: Can I have that deal too?

RtiQ: No.

Photo: Getty

From a match between Man City and Everton in March of 1982 we have former England striker Trevor Francis lunging foot-first into legendary Wales goalkeeper Neville Southall. After Southall "took it in the face," as Martin Tyler says without so much as a giggle, his teammates came to his defense and surrounded Francis, who took a shove to the chest and then reacted by headbutting Billy Wright in the face.

Francis was sent off for all of this, even though he proved that headbutts have been a part of football since long before Zidane and Gattuso made it fashionable.

Real Madrid fans massive derby gambler tifo display

With all the news of fans setting things on fire over the weekend, we somehow overlooked an example of fans doing something awesome. Before Saturday's Madrid derby, Real supporters unfurled a giant tifo display depicting a cigar-smoking gambler sitting at a roulette table and flanked by two lady friends with a caption reading "all on white."

The image was reminiscent of the artwork for Grand Theft Auto III (and Vice City/San Andreas for that matter). It proved to be a good bet too, since Real beat Atletico 4-1.

Here's a video that gives a slightly better impression of just how humongous this tifo was...

Photo via @TheShinguardian

Milan's Facebook page shared this clip of Pato, Robinho and Thiago Silva grooving out to Michel Telo's "Ai Se Eu Te Pego" on train*. They really belt out the Brazilian singer/songwriter's hit, but they're far from the first to do the dance that goes with the tune. Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo and Marcelo, Arsenal's Andre Santos, Poland's Adrian Mierzejewski and Schalke's Lewis Holtby (among others) have all celebrated goals by doing the dance this season. And Neymar even appeared in the music video.

As enjoyable as their performance is, the most impressive part of the clip is the fact that Zlatan Ibrahimovic resists the urge to kick them all for a full 59 seconds. New record!

*The best part of the video, though, is Clarence Seedorf talking on an awesome red telephone behind them.

As we all try to come to terms with the death of 42-year-old Wales manager and Premier League legend Gary Speed, it's easy to get caught up in the widespread assumptions and guesses surrounding the event itself. There have been many tributes and nice words about Speed in the hours since his death was first reported on Sunday, but perhaps the most heartbreaking moment came from Sky Sports News reporter Bryn Law on Monday.

Reporting from the makeshift memorial outside Elland Road, where Speed played for eight years, it was clear that Law was trying very hard to hold back his emotions while talking about his longtime friend. He shared the fact that Speed texted him a running joke between the two on Saturday and that on Sunday, when rumors of Speed's death started to spread, he texted Speed back in the hopes that he would deny the rumors. "There was no call," said Law as he put his hand over his eyes, finally letting himself cry and grieve over the loss of someone he cares about.

Napoli owner tells mugged WAG not to wear Rolex during recession

Days after Napoli's Marek Hamsik's pregnant wife was carjacked in the city, Ezequiel Lavezzi's girlfriend, Yanina Screpante was mugged at gunpoint.

"And then they say there's no security in Argentina... Naples is a s****y city. They just stole my watch at gunpoint!" she tweeted, in addition to a threat that if anything happens to her, Lavezzi will leave the club. She later apologized for her comments and said she was just "letting off steam," but that didn't stop Napoli's crazypants owner from offering her some advice.

Said Aurelio De Laurentiis, the producer of cinematic classics like Yuppies 2 and Christmas in Beverly Hills (via Football Italia):

"Certain comments in the heat of the moment came from the heightened emotion. I would like to tell Yanina that during a recession she shouldn't go round with a Rolex on her wrist.

"Her scared reaction is justified. Maybe she's not yet 'Neapolitan' enough to deal with this sort of thing.

"Perhaps the girl thought she was untouchable, being Lavezzi's girlfriend, but that is not the case."

Yes, she's just not Neopolitan enough to deal with having a gun pointed at her and her valuables stolen. Silly lady!

Coincidentally, De Laurentiis shouted "I'm ashamed to be Italian! I want to change citizenship!" before storming out of the unfavorable Serie A fixture draw and hitching a ride on a stranger's scooter back in July. Apparently he wasn't Italian enough to deal with that sort of thing.

When the final whistle blew on Metz's 1-0 Ligue 2 win over Amiens, the losing side's Johann Paul decided to forgo the traditional post-match handshakes and casually shove Metz's Pierre Bouby instead. Bouby fell to the ground and appeared to decide he might as well take a nap while he was down there and Paul was shown a red card. Meanwhile, the benches cleared and pockets of fighting broke out. There were even a few headlocks.

Once everyone realized that they were doing this after the match had ended and that they could all just go home instead of fighting more, they stopped.

Wayne Rooney heads the ball under the challenge of Danny Simpson
Lifelong ManchesterUnited fan Danny Simpson dented the Reds title chances but backed the champions pedigree to come good.

The 24-year-old Newcastle right back was in the Geordies side that lost 3-1 at league leaders City seven days before their Old Trafford visit that reaped a 1-1 draw and cleared one late effort off the line.

But Simpson believes Uniteds experience is the key factor in the battle for the league crown.

Everyone knows I am a Red. City are in great form and they have great match winners, said Simpson.

But I have said from the start of the season that Sir Alex and the player he has got have been in the position before, they will be able to handle getting 1- 0 wins.

Thats how they do it. They have been in this situation for years and years and years and have got the same players. Thats something City dont really have.

United are quality. When you see the chances, people might ask why they didnt win the game. Normally, I can see why they score so many late goals. They are so clever.

The Reds would have snatched the three points but for a miraculous goal-line clearance from Simpson amid the frenzied finale when he blocked Javier Hernandezs header in the 87th minute.

There was a bit of banter after the game, not too much on it. They werent too happy with me after that clearance, added Simpson after the match.

I have already had a few texts from friends who are not very happy. I have spoiled their night. But that is football. I dont score goals but to clear one off the line is just as good.

It was just my instinct to get back on the line because you know what Hernandez is like in the box. He is so good, he gets things. I just got myself ! there. A ll credit to the lads, the last ten minutes was just wave after wave. There were blocks, clearances, headers, we have been doing that all season.

My clearance off the line wouldnt have meant anything had we not gone on to get a point.

Credit to the lads, especially with 10 men we battled and dug in. We were magnificent.

What do you think? Have your say.

Three fans sent Neymar a letter that is one kilometer long

Everyone knows that you haven't truly made it until someone sends you a letter that's more than a half mile long. And by that perfectly normal standard, Neymar has finally made it.

"Look at the letter I received from three beautiful fans. The letter is 1 km. Thank you for caring," said Neymar on Twitter, providing the image above as evidence of such a ridiculous item.

Because it's all rolled up, we have no way of knowing what the letter says. But judging by the looks of that behemoth, it must be amazing/terrifying/hilarious/even more terrifying. Especially when you realize the whole thing was written in bodily fluids.

If Neymar hasn't hired an army of personal bodyguards yet, now would probably be a great time to do that.

Borussia Monchengladbach made easy work of the Cologne in the Rhein derby on Friday. So easy, in fact, that they needed to play rock-paper-scissors during the match to spice it up a bit.

With a 3-0 lead that they would hold from the 47th minute until the final whistle, Gladbach strikers Marco Reus and Mike Hanke decided to play schnick-schnack-schnuck (that's what the Germans call it) to see who would take a free kick from just outside the box.

From Bild:

Said Reus, almost apologetically: "We didn't want to make fun of anyone. Mike was supposed to be the shooter, but he already had a brace. And I also wanted to score. That's why I suggested that we figure it out. "

So, like children arguing over, well, who gets to take a shot on goal, they battled it out. On the first throw, both went with paper. So, they went again. On the second throw, Reus went with rock and Hanke opted for scissors, thus losing his chance at a hat trick.

Meanwhile, every single person in the stadium not named Reus or Hanke patiently waited for the football match to resume.

Romas Pablo Osvaldo reportedly punched teammate in the face

Pablo Osvaldo has been fined and suspended for what Roma general manager Franco Baldini described as "a lack of respect ... to one of his teammates" after Friday's 2-0 loss to Udinese. According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, Osvaldo was apparently angry that fellow Argentine Erik Lamela did not pass to him during the match. So, once they returned to the dressing room, a kerfuffle ensued.

From the AFP:

After the match, he punched his compatriot in the face following an argument during which Lamela threw a plastic bottle at Osvaldo, according to reports.

Italian press claim Osvaldo will be fined and suspended for 10 days, meaning he will miss the match against Fiorentina next weekend.

Both players issued apologies to the team on Sunday. But why did Osvaldo get so bent out of shape over such a silly matter? My guess is lingering and misdirected bitterness over his disallowed golazo last week.

Photos: Getty

In October, Real Sociedad's 20-year-old defender, Inigo Martinez, scored his first La Liga goal with a rocket from just inside his own half. Naturally, the only way to top that would be to score from the halfway line, in injury time, with the score even. So that's what Martinez did for his second La Liga goal to give his side a 3-2 win over Real Betis.

Making it an even more crushing blow for Betis is the fact that they had fought back from 2-0 down to equalize with goals from Jonathan in the 81st and 85th minutes. For Martinez to do what he did after such a valiant comeback is almost cruel.

It's becoming clear that Martinez is some kind of wizard.

Video via 101gg

From the Philippe Senderos School of Unfortunate Word Choice, we have Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina being interviewed on Soccer AM's Teammates segment. When asked about superstitions, the Spaniard mentions that Jamie Carragher "doesn't like me to fist him before the games."

Though he is surely referring to fist bumps instead of any violently perverse acts of pre-match bonding, it's easy to see why Carragher would prefer a high five.

Video via ONTD

Patrice Evra believes Manchester United must look beyond their obvious frustration at an inexplicable penalty decision at Old Trafford yesterday.

Rio Ferdinand admitted on Twitter after the 1-1 draw with Newcastle he felt unable to express his true feelings about linesman John Flynn for fear of ending up with a hefty fine.

Ferdinand did appear to mouth "joke" in the immediate aftermath of referee Mike Jones' refusal to overrule his assistant, whom he consulted with despite having originally indicated the defender's challenge on Hatem Ben Arfa was worthy of nothing more than a corner.

Sir Alex Ferguson went further, questioning whether Flynn should ever be appointed to another Premier League game and raising the issue of a disparity between full-time referees and part-time assistants.

This may warrant further action by the Football Association, especially as United's in-house station, MUTV, appeared to cut a portion of Ferguson's post-match interview with them out of their broadcast.

As MUTV were embarrassingly responsible for broadcasting the explosive comments Ferguson made about Martin Atkinson in the wake of his side's defeat at Chelsea in March, which ended with him being forced to serve a five-match touchline ban, it may be nothing more than adopting a safety-first attitude on the station's part.

Ferguson was clearly not happy though, a sentiment that could be applied to his entire squad and backroom staff, some of whom were still expressing their incredulity 90 minutes after the final whistle.
Evra was one of those who made his feelings plain to Jones as Demba Ba was celebrating his equaliser.

However, after a game in which United spurned half a dozen glorious chances, the France full-back feels his team-mates would be well served to! adopt a more reflective stance.

"The referee took the responsibility. He went to see the linesman. He said, are you sure?" said Evra. "He said he was sure it was a penalty so the referee trusted his man. What can you say about that?

"But we have to focus more on the chances that we missed because we could have won the game before that accident."

Unusually, Javier Hernandez was one of the chief culprits.

Although the Mexican opened the scoring, even if he did not know anything about it as Steven Taylor smashed an attempted clearance straight at him, the rebound bouncing into an empty net as Tim Krul had dived to save Wayne Rooney's initial shot, he wasted "four one-on-ones" according to Ferguson.

In addition, he had a last-gasp effort correctly ruled out for offside, having already been foiled by former United full-back Danny Simpson, who was perfectly placed to boot a goalbound header off the line.

"I am keeping my head down," said the Salford-born defender. "I have already had a few texts from friends who are not very happy.

"There was a bit of banter with the players at the end, with them telling me I had spoiled their day.

"United are quality. When you look at the chances, people might ask why they didn't win the game.

"You can see why they score so many late goals. They are so clever.

"Even with the offside, it was a relief."

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has certainly instilled an inner belief amongst his squad, who after last week's defeat at Manchester City, must now steel themselves for yet another stern test, at home to Chelsea.

In contrast, United will lick their wounds and wait to hear whether the FA are going to take any action over Ferguson's comments, with Evra believing they must find the scoring touch that has deserted them since that scintillating early season run.

"If we want to win the league, we have to score more goals," said Evra. "Against Arsenal w! e create d eight chances and scored eight goals. In this match we created seven chances and scored only one."

It has left United looking over their shoulders at a quickly-closing Tottenham, not to mention wonder at how best to overhaul Manchester City.

Not that Ferguson is giving off the air of a worried man.

"I will worry in April," he said, curtly, when asked about his fears.

Benfica beat Sporting, so Sporting fans set their stadium on fire

Last weekend it was fans throwing stuff onto the pitch, this weekend it's fans setting things on fire. Why the swift and drastic turn for the worse in disgusting fan behavior? Well, derbies, of course.

In Serbia, the Eternal derby was smothered in a haze of fireworks and smoke from both sets of fans. Meanwhile, in Portugal, angry Sporting fans set their section of Benfica's Estadio da Luz on fire because their side lost 1-0. Seriously, they set the section on fire. Here's news footage of how it looked from the outside...

Luckily, firefights were able to put out the blaze before it could spread beyond that one section. This will probably just be taken as a challenge for Sporting fans the next time around, though.

So remember, kids. Always cover yourself in a flame-retardant gel before attending a football match.

Photo: Getty

As if Manchester United dropping two points at home because of a dubious penalty decision in favor of their opponents wasn't freakish enough for one day (or millennium), Barcelona kept the bizarro-world trend going with a few unusual events of their own.

First, they fell behind to relegation zone hoverers Getafe, then Sergio Busquets was actually shown a yellow card for falling down into the fetal position a bit too easily and finally, Lionel Messi blasted a shot off the bar just before the final whistle -- a moment when he usually scores the vital goal and giggles and causes Jose Mourinho to punch a hole in his television.

So with that loss and Real Madrid's win over Atletico, Mourinho's side now maintains a six-point lead over Barcelona in this strange new universe where down is up and Busquets gets punished.

This is Sergio Busquets actually getting booked for diving

This is Sergio Busquets actually getting booked for diving

Photos: Reuters, Getty

The Eternal derby turned into a fireworks fight

Violence and pyrotechnics have long played a commanding role in the Belgrade derby and Saturday's edition was more of the same flaming madness. Before the match even started, Red Star fans tried to follow up on their death threats and obituary posting by pelting turncoat goalkeeper Vladimir Stojkovic with fireworks as he scurried to the tunnel...

Smoke from the excessive amount of fireworks and flares delayed the start of the match and once the first half did begin, there were a pair of 10-minute delays from even more pyro-missles being thrown onto the pitch. Firefighters also had to put out a blaze that consumed a structure on the running track.

As if all that wasn't exhausting enough, the two teams got in a scuffle just after the halftime whistle when Serbian champions Partizan refused to make a run for the tunnel while Red Star fans threw fireworks.

When all the fire throwing, fighting and seat destroying was finished, Partizan won 2-0 and now everyone can look forward to repeating it all again at the next derby, keeping the cycling of tedious chaos going forever.

The Eternal derby turned into a fireworks fight

The Eternal derby turned into a fireworks fight

The Eternal derby turned into a fireworks fight

Photos: Reuters

Hope Solo says DWTS told her she had too much muscle

Coming off the high of last summer's second-place finish at the Women's World Cup, U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo and partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy made it to the semi-finals of televised celebrity ballroom dancing spectacle Dancing with the Stars before being eliminated.

Between gossip mongers pushing stories of problems between Solo and Chmerkovskiy and the show's judges upsetting the goalkeeper with their harsh critiques early on in the competition, it was clear that this wasn't always a fun experience for Solo even before it was over. But in her first interview since the end of the competition, Hope said that the show's criticisms of her ran deeper than opinions on dance technique. She told Anderson Cooper:

"I was told I had too much muscle and I was too intense and wasn't very dainty. Well, hello -- you cast a female professional athlete. Help me get better as a dancer. There's no hard feelings at all. I understand that it's television."

Six of the show's 13 winners have been athletes, but only two of those winners have been female athletes: Kristi Yamaguchi and Shawn Johnson. And the figure skater and Olympic gymnast are much more in line with the judges' narrow vision for "dainty" female dancers than the 5'9" shot stopper, who recently showed off her impressive form in ESPN The Magazine body (read: naked) issue.

It does seem Solo has calmed! down a bit since her reaction to the judging of her final performances got her branded as a "sore loser," though. From People:

In a video recap of Monday's performances, Solo, 30, complained about her scores: "Sevens? The same thing I got in week one. Kiss my booty," she said, adding, "The scores at this point, the judges at this point mean nothing." The pair were also heard swearing about the judges as they awaited their second set of scores: "F 'em," they said, with Solo also tossing in that she didn't even want to look at the panel.

Solo also told Cooper that she was "a little naive" going into the "reality show." It sounds like the same (as well as a few other choice words Hope already used) can be said for the show's producers when they invited her on.


Sir Alex Ferguson has his say
Sir Alex Ferguson has labelled Manchester United's 1-1 draw with Newcastle "a travesty" as he tried to take in the Magpies' controversial equaliser at Old Trafford.

The hosts were leading through Javier Hernandez's second-half effort when Rio Ferdinand slid in on Hatem Ben Arfa.

Referee Mike Jones indicated a corner, only for linesman John Flynn to signal for a penalty.

TV replays indicated Ferdinand's challenge had been legal but after discussing the decision with Flynn, Jones refused to overrule his assistant and Demba Ba tucked home the spot-kick.

"To not get the three points from that is just a travesty," said Ferguson.

"It was everyone's view, including the referee. He thought Rio won the ball and gave a corner. He has let the linesman overrule him."

Ferguson recounted an incident in the home game against Sunderland earlier this month, when a linesman flagged for a penalty, only for referee Lee Mason to, correctly, give the decision in United's favour as an example of what should have happened.

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"We had a situation a few weeks ago," he said. "The linesman gave a penalty for a handball, which was obviously an opponent's hand.

"He was put in a terrible quandary. He didn't know what to do.

"But he knew full well it was a handball from an opponent and overruled the linesman. That is what he should have done today."

United players surrounded Jones at the final whistle, with Ferdinand, Patrice Evra and Wayne Rooney particularly upset as they made their way off the field.

However, New! castle d eserved some credit for the barrage of late attacks they managed to withstand, despite having Jonas Gutierrez sent off.

Tim Krul made a string of fine saves, former United defender Danny Simpson denied Hernandez with a magnificent goalline clearance and the Mexican had an effort ruled out for offside deep into stoppage time.

"It was a fantastic performance by us and an incredible result," said Ferguson.

"I could see us scoring because we kept creating chances and the normal pattern of these 15-minute surges is that we take our chances and we are okay.

"They put their bodies on the line. I give them credit for that.

"We absolutely slaughtered them but we just couldn't get the result.

"It is disappointing but if we play like that every week, I will be very happy."

What do you think? Have your say.

Artur Borucs Friday Rage List

Friday, November 25, 2011

Artur Borucs Friday Rage List












Photo: Male Men Magazine

Lee Jung-Ho plays for Ettifaq in Saudi Arabia and he is the new record holder for fastest red card in the league. About 90 seconds after entering a 1-1 match against Al Raed as a substitute in the 88th minute, Lee decided to give an opponent an elbow to the ribs. Lee lifted up his shirt to try and show where he was grabbed first, but the ref just gave him a red card for his troubles. That's an impact sub.

If youd heard of the American Samoa national football team before this week, theres likely only one reason: Australia. A few years back, they took a beating that would leave even a ginger stepchild quaking in their boots at 31-0. Theyre also the joint-worst team in all the world. But in a successful effort to stave off symmetry, they won what was to be #31 earlier this week, then drew against the Cook Islands today in their WCQ, keeping them undefeated in two. An unlikely invitee to Brazil in 2014, but a great story.

Theyre also co-ed, which is likely unique in WCQ. And judging by the lack of hot pants on the highlights, Sepps yet to intervene.

Wayne Rooney

Wayne Rooney and Nemanja Vidic are set to return for Manchester United for their Premier League encounter with Newcastle at Old Trafford.

Rooney missed Tuesday night's draw with Benfica with a hip injury sustained last week at Swansea whilst Vidic was ruled out through suspension.

However, both are included in a squad missing Anderson (knee), Michael Owen (thigh) and Tom Cleverley (ankle) as the Reds look to close the gap on leaders Manchester City to two points.

Ahead of the game United midfielder Darren Fletcher said: The thing I have been most impressed about with them (Newcastle)this season has been their work ethic.

Theyve bought into what manager Alan Pardew is preaching. I know they were beaten for the first time this season at City last week but they played well and only lost to two penalties and a sloppy goal.

They wont have been derailed by that and we expect them to come here to get back up and running. But weve got to keep close to City and to make sure we are breathing down their necks.

Click below to hear MEN Sport's Paul Handler talk to Manchester United reporter Stuart Mathieson ahead of the game

Sir Alex Ferguson added: "Everyone has been taken by Newcastle's start to the season and the credit must go to Alan Pardew.

"When he was at Reading we gave him Luke Chadwick on loan. He was first-class in terms of the information he was giving us. He is very meticulous.

"He has grasped the nettle at Newcastle very well and they are all working like Trojans up there."

However, with Manchester City reeling after their Champions League defeat in Naples and having to face another stiff examination at Liverpool on Sunda! y, now w ould seem like the perfect time for Ferguson's team to reduce the gap, even if the Scot's sights are firmly trained on his traditional date of assessment, January 1.

"Being there at New Years' Day is the big one for us," he said.

"If we are around about the top, the second half of the season presents an opportunity for us.

"With the way this club is organised to perform in the second half of the season, it helps us.

"That is my aim. It doesn't matter how we get there, or who is around us - Chelsea, Manchester City or Arsenal - as long as we are."

Gabriel Obertan will return to the Newcastle squadagainst hisformer club.

The Frenchman, who has missed the last two games with a toe infection, is expected to be available, as is fellow midfielder Danny Guthrie, who should make the game despite missing training this week because of a hip injury.

However, Ivory Coast international Cheik Tiote (knee) and Republic of Ireland striker Leon Best (groin) remain doubts, while Sylvain Marveaux is expected to be sidelined for up to four months after undergoing groin surgery.

Manchester United (from): De Gea, Lindegaard, Rafael, Smalling, Fabio, Jones, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evans, Evra, Nani, Valencia, Gibson, Carrick, Fletcher, Park, Giggs, Young, Rooney, Hernandez, Berbatov.

Newcastle United (from): Krul, Elliot, Simpson, R Taylor, Santon, Ferguson, Coloccini, S Taylor, Perch, Cabaye, Gutierrez, Gosling, Guthrie, Obertan, Ben Arfa, Abeid, Vuckic, Smith, Ba, Shola Ameobi, Lovenkrands, Sammy Ameobi.

United league form: DLWWW

Newcastle league form: DWWWL

Key opponent: Demba Ba - one of the league's form strikers

Prediction: United 2 Newcastle 0 - with Rooney and Vidic back United should be sharper at both ends of the field

Agree with the prediction? Have your say.

here for all the latest odds from Betfred.


Manchester United midfielder Anderson has been ruled out until February with a knee injury.

The Brazilian, who two years ago was forced to undergo an operation following cruciate ligament damage, has been sent back to the same specialist in Portugal for further assessment.

Anderson has not played since the Champions League clash with Otelul Galati on November 2 but the injury has turned out to be far worse than Sir Alex Ferguson feared.

"Anderson is out until February with a knee injury," Ferguson said.

"He's been sent to Portugal to see a specialist who operated on him before. Not good news."

The news throws into chaos Ferguson's midfield plans given Tom Cleverley is also currently out of action with an ankle injury.

However Ferguson, who was heavily linked with Luca Modric, Samir Nasri and Wesley Sneijder last summer, has no plans to go into the January transfer market.

"It is easy to say you are going to buy players but it is not easy to buy them for Manchester United, especially in January," he said.

"I do not see anyone who could make us a better team.

"There are two or three players but they are not available, so there is no point even going there."

Michael Carrick, Darren Fletcher and Darron Gibsonare now the only fit central midfield players, although Ryan Giggs and Ji-sung Park can play in the position.

Boss Sir Alex Ferguson has also experimented with Phil Jones and Wayne Rooney in the middle, while youngster Paul Pogba could be forced to step up to the first team.

Meanwhile Ferguson has confirmed Rooney is fit after he missed the Champions League game against Benfica.

What do you think? Have your say.

Naked Ronaldinho webcam video leaks, coach jokes about itA webcam video of Ronaldinho doing some solo work in a bathroom has been leaked onto the internet and the only surprise here is that it's taken this long for something like this to happen.

According to Globo, the video was first posted to YouTube, but has since been removed due to the graphic content. Since then, it has, of course, spread to many of the more naked corners of the internet that I'm sure you can find yourself, if so inclined.

Word of the video quickly spread through the Brazilian press and by the time Flamengo's Thursday training ended and manager Vanderlei Luxemburgo's press conference began, the topic of conversation was obvious.

From SambaFoot:

Manager Vanderlei Luxemburgo would not be drawn on the issue, insisting that he 'had nothing to do with it.'

"This is a particular problem for Ronaldinho. I can not control what is on my player's computers," said the coach, to much laughter from the gathered press ranks.

"The only thing I can do is [get] out of the way before this .... blows," finished Luxemburgo to even more laughter.

Egged on by the laughter, Globo reports that Luxemburgo took the jokes a step further by asking which of the assembled journalists had seen the video. Then he said this:

Let me ask a question for you? Who saw the video of Ronaldinho? How big?

Whether this disrupts his game remains to be seen, but it sounds like his relationsh! ip with Luxemburgo just got sufficiently more awkward.

Cutting back on his partying and focusing more on football, Ronaldinho has enjoyed a resurgence with Flamengo and returned to the national team. He's scored 13 goals this season and Flamengo currently sit sixth in the table. And now we know what he's been doing instead of going out to dance and play with Samba bands all night. Even if we didn't want to.

It took 17 years and 30 straight defeats -- including a world record 31-0 loss to Australia -- but American Samoa finally got to experience the joy of victory in a FIFA-sanctioned match this week with their 2-1 win over Tonga to start their Oceania World Cup qualifying campaign.

Tied for 204th (out of 204) in the FIFA world rankings, the U.S. protectorate with a population of 55,000 has been outscored 229-12 in international play since joining FIFA in 1994. The team never scored a goal or even managed a 0-0 draw in World Cup qualifying. So the win over 202nd ranked Tonga gives them an overwhelming combination of firsts.

The game itself served as a reminder as to why these teams are ranked where they are. The first goal of the match, scored by American Samoa's Ramin Ott was a bouncing speculative shot from 40 yards out that hit the Tonga keeper right in the hands before deflecting into the net (1:05 into the video). American Samoa's second goal was more impressive, though, as Kaneti Falela put a perfectly placed ball over the charging goalkeeper just before getting run over in the 74th minute (2:00). And once the final whistle blew, some players lifted their arms, others dropped to their knees and still others looked around like they had no idea how to react to such a long awaited and almost mythical result.

After the match, coach Thomas Rongren and goal scorer Ramin Ott summed up the moment (via the AP):

"This is going to be part of soccer history, like the 31-0 (defeat) against Australia was part of history," Rongen said.

"I can't explain it right now," Ott said. "I'm elated. I'm above everything right now."

Former MLS and US U-20 coach Thomas Rongren just took charge of the team in October. According to the Associated Press, Rongren "was sent to American Samoa in October as part of a goodwill exchange program between the U.S. Soccer Federation the Oceania Football Confederation." If all this sounds like the makings of the perfect feel-good sports movie, you're already too late. But a sequel is definitely in order.

And now, with that pesky first win out of the way, American Samoa can focus on making it two in a row.

Video via KCKRS

Sir Alex Ferguson

Newcastle are braced for a Manchester United backlash when they attempt to end their 39-year wait for a victory at Old Trafford.

The Magpies head into Saturday's trip to the north-west having not won at United since February 1972.

They do so looking to bounce back from their first Barclays Premier League defeat of the season at leaders Manchester City last weekend, but acutely aware of what lies in wait for them with United trailing their arch-rivals in the table and still coming to terms with Tuesday night's disappointing 2-2 Champions League draw with Benfica.

Pardew has immense respect for Red Devils counterpart Sir Alex Ferguson, and knows he will have his players fired up to make an immediate response in an attempt to reel in City.

He said with a smile: "He's clocking up all sorts of milestones. It's about time he walked away and gave someone else a chance. He has been brilliant.

"I know he will be smarting from Wednesday's draw, so unfortunately, we are on the back of a negative from Manchester United's point of view, so it will be a tough game for us.

"When the last game of the season comes around, I expect Manchester United to be playing for the title.

"He wouldn't have it any other way, the manager."

With history so overwhelmingly against them, Newcastle could be forgiven for making the trip to Old Trafford without any great confidence of returning with a positive result.

However, despite last week's reverse at the Etihad Stadium, Pardew is confident United will not have things all their own way, and that his team can return with something to show for their efforts.

He said: "If you are going to old Trafford against the quality of player and the atmosphere that'! s create d, of course you are going to find it very, very difficult.

"The odds are that you are not going to get many victories, and 1972 suggests that maybe we are due one.

"You need a bit of luck, sometimes the ball to roll your way or fortune to favour you.

"But you have got to force that. We have got to force them into a situation where they might make a mistake, or we have a forward running beyond and a player commits himself and they are down to 10 men.

"It's crucial when that chance comes along that we take it, because we aren't going to get many chances there."

The game will see both Danny Simpson and Gabriel Obertan return to their former club having failed to win regular football during their time there, although Pardew insists there is no shame in that.

He said: "It's a good time for them to go back and show the have grown as players and as individuals, and you can only do that with first-team football.

"At Manchester United, there are so many world-class players, it's difficult to break in."

What challenges will Newcastle present United? Have your say.


Click on the box below to watch Chris Smalling and Darren Fletcher give their reaction to the 2-2 draw with Benfica.


Future News: Andre Villas-Boas reveals get rich quick scheme

Following Chelsea's 2-1 Champions League group stage loss to Bayer Leverkusen on Wednesday, embattled manager Andre Villas-Boas interrupted his own press conference to make shocking confession.

"I admit it," Villas-Boas said, following a question about why his team seems incapable of retaining a lead. "I only came to Chelsea for the severance package."

After paying FC Porto 13 million in compensation so they could sign Villas-Boas, Chelsea now face yet another large severance payout if owner Roman Abramovich decides to sack the 34-year-old for a series of disappointing results to start the season. Chelsea have lost consecutive matches at home for the first time in nine years and four of 12 Premier League games in total.

"Before I joined Chelsea, I was happy at Porto," the Portuguese said while squatting and scrunching his face the way he often does on the touchline during matches. "But I saw what happened to Avram Grant and Phil Scolari and Carlo Ancelotti and the eight or nine thousand other managers Chelsea have had in the last decade and I thought I could come here, sign a big contract, lose a few matches, get sacked and go home with a buttload of money. It seemed so easy."

Once he stood up and squatted back down, he continued: "But when I got here and we started struggling, I couldn't stand it. So the worst part is that these last few matches, I've actually been trying to win. These defenders are ruining everything, though. Football is weird."

Photo: Getty

All the stuff being covered outside the unfriendly confines of the award-winning Dirty Tackle...

Man City kitman Chappy gives Mario an award for the hand hat he wore last season, Mario is not impressed. [YouTube]

Megan Rapinoe feeds a baby deer...inside someone's house. [KCKRS]

An excellent tour of Barcelona's La Masia. [442]

Anyone executive members wearing shorts will be turned away at Old Trafford. [Independent]

Manuel Neuer did really well on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? [Kickette]

Top 5 January transfers SF would like to see happen. [Surreal Football]

Zlatan Ibrahimovic's "entire career has been built on a desire for revenge." Like a Stallone movie! [TFB]

Champions League is leaving our memories blank. [WSC]

Boca Juniors build the world's first football themed hotel. [Hotel Boca]

Funny new football comic. [The Pitiful Game]

Fighting back from an early own goal and letting Lionel Messi have his way from the penalty spot, Kevin-Prince Boateng gave Milan their second equalizer of the first half against Barcelona with this next-level effort that dropped Victor Valdes on his rear end.

Unhinging his body to reign in the ball at the top of the box, Boateng then went into to turbo mode whiling pulling off a bit of fancy dribbling before slamming the ball into the near side of the net. You can blame Valdes if you like, but it probably would've melted his hand if he touched that ball.

Barcelona would get their inevitable winner in the second half. And instead of equalizing yet again, Zlatan Ibrahimovic decided to just kick Seydou Keita in the head instead.

Ashley Cole

It takes a certain amount of acting skill to to deceive your wife when you are cheating on her behind her back. In completely unrelated news, Chelsea defender Ashley Cole is set to display his acting skills when he features in a new football-based movie called Played.

The money-loving left back will play himself in the docu-drama, which begins filming next month. The Sun explains the plot:

"The plot follows a football agent and how he goes about his business while living the Premier League lifestyle. It features a few dodgy scenarios including underhand transfers and sleeping around with different women."

While Cole may be thrilled to research the "sleeping around with different women" part of his role, he will almost certainly be ecstatic to share the silver screen with the world's greatest living actor, Danny Dyer. The movie will also feature Sam Allardyce playing himself, and Joe Cole playing someone who used to be able to get a game in the Premier League.

Cole will also be backing the film financially, much like he and Rio Ferdinand did with the 2009 50 Cent thriller Dead Man Running.

Image: Getty

This was one of two goals Elon University's Jordan Smith scored on UNC Greensboro in his side's 3-2 Southern Conference Championship win a couple weeks ago. After a nice hop over a sliding defender and making his way around the keeper, Smith casually put the ball into the empty net.

Frustrated by this series of events, the keeper decided to take out his anger on his own net with a weak jump kick. Of course, the net fought back and grabbed a hold of his boot, sending him to the ground face first. This is why you should never attack an inanimate object. They have no remorse.

Thanks to Derek for the video!

Ronaldo with a moustache

If the Seinfeld producers were looking to re-cast the part of Kramer as someone overweight, Brazilian, mustachioed and thoroughly devoid of sleep, there's a three-time FIFA World Player of the Year who'd be perfect.

Ronaldo posted this picture to his Twitter account yesterday, showing the world what happens when one of the most successful athletes of all time succumbs to a life of transvestite prostitutes and Krispy Kreme. The mustache could be a gesture for Movember, but is more likely another chapter in the former striker's history of forgettable grooming (see questionable chin fluff and baffling haircut).

Brazilian news sites have compared Fat Kramer's new look to Brazilian musician Tim Maia and Don King, but we at DT would much rather see him in a sports jacket maniacally ! poking h is head around the door of a New York apartment.

Image: @ClaroRonaldo

Manchester United winger Nani insists the Reds can still go all the way in this season's Champions League, despite knowing they are unlikely to advance as group winners.

Last night's 2-2 draw with Benfica means the Portuguese giants will top Group C on their head-to-head record against United if both sides win their final matches and finish level on 12 points.

As Benfica face Romanian makeweights Otelul Galati, who have still to collect their first point, even manager Sir Alex Ferguson concedes second spot is the best United can hope for if they avoid defeat to Basle in Switzerland on December 7.

That means facing a group winner in the knockout stages, with Bayern Munich, Inter Milan and Real Madrid already certain to lie in wait.

Holders Barcelona also seem likely to win their group and if Arsenal and Chelsea maintain their present status as group leaders, the only alternative would be either Apoel Nicosia or Zenit St Petersburg, who meet in Russia this evening.

But despite drawing three times in their five European games so far, and not beating anyone other than Otelul, Portugal winger Nani insists United can make their presence felt.

"If we do finish second and get a big team that is no problem for us," he said. "If you have ambitions to get to the Champions League final you are always going to get a top side. We are still confident."

Nani agreed with Ferguson's assessment that, after falling behind to an early Phil Jones own goal, United had done well to get their noses in front and, if they had held on for more than a few seconds until Pablo Aimar struck, they would have gone on to win.

"We deserved more from the game," he said. "We played some fantastic football and created a lot of chances. We should have held the lead for longer! though. We are a bit down at that."

Ferguson has certainly not forgotten it was a two-goal lead thrown away against Basle on matchday two that has left his side in a more uncomfortable position than they would have wished.

Few expect United to suffer a defeat against the same side that would tip them out of the competition at the same stage as six years ago, but Ferguson is wary.

"The reminder to us when we go to Basle is that we threw that game away," he said. "There is no question about that.

"We have an opportunity to correct that freak result on their own ground.

"It is not going to be easy but maybe I will have a few more players back and my selections will be wider and more varied."

As Wayne Rooney has his UEFA disciplinary hearing in Nyon the day afterwards, it is to be hoped United's star striker makes the journey.

After sustaining a hip injury at Swansea on Saturday, Rooney did not even make the bench last night despite Ferguson's previous claim that the 26-year-old would be fit.

In fact, Rooney was not even 70%, which raises doubts over his ability to recover ahead of Saturday's Premier League encounter with Newcastle at Old Trafford.

"Wayne wasn't ready," Ferguson added. "If he had been 70% I might have put him on the bench.

"We will have a look at him over the next couple of days and hopefully he will be available for Saturday because that is a big game.

"Danny Welbeck is on the way back and Chris Smalling came on for a bit, so maybe there is a bit of light at the end of the tunnel."


Mourinho offers Vilanova his well wishes after gland surgery

Three months ago, Jose Mourinho launched a sneak attack on Barcelona assistant Tito Vilanova's eyeball during the Spanish Supercopa brawl that was caught on camera and served as further evidence that matches between Real Madrid and Barcelona have devolved into a surreal hodgepodge of ruthlessness. But now, in the spirit of the holiday season, Mourinho proves that he's not holding onto this grudge. At least, not publicly.

On Tuesday, Vilanova underwent successful salivary gland surgery that will require three to four weeks recovery time. And Mourinho expressed his support for him, just as Real Madrid did when Barca defender Eric Abidal went through his liver surgery last year.

From the AP:

"Last year we showed solidarity through our concern over Abidal, so obviously we will do the same with Tito Vilanova," Mourinho said after Madrid routed Dinamo Zagreb 6-2 in the Champions League. "We hope he returns to his family and Barcelona quickly and that he is on the bench in perfect health (for the clasico) on Dec. 10."

Because sneaking up and poking a sick guy in the eye would just be an ugly thing to do. As everyone knows, bitter rivalries require all parties to be in good health so the squabbles over a game can be properly taken too serious.

Donovans MLS Cup final kit to be sold off despite formidable smell

After scoring the winning goal in the rain-soaked MLS Cup final on Sunday and returning to the dressing room with the match's MVP award, Landon Donovan was doused in champagne and Budweiser as the celebration began. Once he finally peeled off his kit, the soggy clothes were put in a bag, which The Sporting News' Brian Straus took a picture of it (above, left) and mentioned how odd that seemed.

It turns out the kit was bagged up so it could be sent off to sports memorabilia and trading card company Upper Deck. Unfortunately, this helped it ferment and seal in the many odors of the night. So when the package made it to Upper Deck's offices, it was accompanied by this note from the LA Galaxy:

"I apologize in advance for the smell and I would recommend airing it all out somewhere given the champagne, beer, sweat and rain stench that surrounds it. There's no doubting the authenticity, that's for sure. As an added bonus, we even threw in his socks."

"We may leave it outside tonight because it has such a formidable aroma," said an Upper Deck rep.

Once they do that (and maybe unload a few canisters of Febreze on it), Landon will sign it and the whole thing will be put up for sale. Then, for the right price, you can add this one of a kind s! ouvenir and its overpowering smell to your home (socks included!) or give it as a gift to the Galaxy fan on your list. It's sure to bring them to tears. Because of the smell, I mean.

DT Exclusive: An interview with a young Jose Mourinho

Iker Casillas posted the picture of Jose Mourinho as a child you see above on his Facebook page. So we decided to fire up the DT time machine and visit li'l Jose to find out just how much he's changed over the years. The following is a transcript of that interview.

DT: Hi, Jose. How are you?

Jose: I am fantastic. How else would I be?

DT: I, uh, I don't know. That's why I asked.

Jose: Well it was a stupid question and you are already wasting my time. Ask good questions or I will leave. My trains will not play with themselves.

DT: OK. Sorry. So what do you like to do?

Jose: I like the trains, as I have already said. I like to fingerpaint. This is fun. I also like to win. That is what I do best.

DT: What have you won?

Jose: Everything. I play hide and seek at my house and I win. I play board games at my neighbor's house and I win. I play nap time at school and I win.

DT: How do you win at nap time?

Jose: Shut up.

DT: Ow! You just poked me in the eye!

Jose: Don't make me do it again.

DT: You're not going to make many friends that way, li'l Jose.

Jose: I have many friends. They all know I am the boss. There is Pepe, he kicks people. There is Riccardo, he follows me everywhere. An! d there is Mr. Perez, who lets me teach the class while he spends the school's money on overpriced typewriters. There are also people who I laugh at and aren't my friends. Like Gerard because he bleeds on everything and Rafa because he is chubby and bad at everything.

DT: That's not nice, Jose.

Jose: But it is true.

DT: Still, how would you like if there was a kid younger than you who came along and was just as good at winning as you and made you feel the way Rafa must?

Jose: That would never happen. I will keep winning everything in all the countries of Europe and I will ride on the backs of other children like a lemur king while I do it.

DT: That's...a weird thing for a little kid to aspire to.

Jose: I am not a normal little kid. Just look at my shiny buttons and the side part in my hair. This is good. I'm sure there is a phrase for how different and great I am, but I am still learning vocabulary words.

DT: "Special"? Are you "The Special One"?

Jose: You tell me.

DT: What do you think of UNICEF?

Jose: I think it is an evil organization. I do not trust them. They say they give money to children, but I never get this money. They are liars.

DT: Ow! You just -- you just poked me in the eye again! What was that for?

Jose: A diversion. And now I will ride on your back to the shops where you will buy me ice cream and toys. Giddyup, donkey.

Nasri fails to distract Napoli with his colorful underpants

Though still undefeated in the Premier League, Manchester City have now lost twice in the Champions League group stage, putting them in serious danger of elimination. Samir Nasri didn't start Tuesday's match against Napoli, but he did try to do his part by flashing his underpants covered in multi-colored hearts before entering the match in the 70th minute.

This did not prove to be a meaningful diversion. Instead, Napoli retained their 2-1 lead until the final whistle. Next time, Nasri might try something from Mario Balotelli's underpants line, which are made out of money and explosives.

Image via @sijlaw

Well, this isn't a tackle, but it probably hurt Roma's Pablo Osvaldo more than a two-footed lunge to the kneecap. With Roma already up 2-1 late in their match against Lecce on Sunday, Osvaldo pulled off a brilliant overhead kick for what should have been his sixth goal of the season had the linesman not ruined it with his dubious offside call.

You can see in the replay that Osvaldo was definitely onside. Teammate Aleandro Rosi was, however, in an offside position, but not interfering with the athletic perfection on display.

So, Osvaldo doesn't get official credit for that goal. Thanks to YouTube, that doesn't really matter, though.

The Czech Republic national team might just be the bad boys of Europe, never seemingly far from the dark side of the press or contributing to a hookers rent. Theyd also been underachieving a bit, giving them due reason to celebrate their inclusion in Polkraine 2012.

Of course, taking it out on a detractor by singing Radek Drulak has no cock. in a Montenegro airport probably isnt what the PR department had in mind.

On a positive note, the 15 other teams at Euro 2012 would love that sort of team unity.

Paralyzed footballer scouts for Middlesbrough by blinking

If you need a reminder that no matter what setbacks you experience in life, with a bit of creativity and perseverance, you can still do something you love, this should be it.

Former Middlesbrough defender and Blackpool youth team coach Gary Parkinson, now 43, suffered a stroke in the stem of the brain that left him paralyzed with locked in syndrome in September of last year. It left him only able to communicate through movement of his eyes. In the time since, Middlesbrough manager Tony Mowbray has visited his old teammate on numerous occasions and decided to give Parkinson a role with the club that gives him "something to focus on" and utilizes his knowledge of the game and potential transfer targets. So, he made Parkinson a scout.

From The Northern Echo:

If Thornaby-born Parkinson really likes a player, he raises his eyelids to look up when [his wife ] Deborah goes through a scale of one to four with him.

If he looks up when she says "one", he is not impressed and Boro are advised not to push for a deal.

Deborah relays the message back to Mowbray, who uses the information to come to a final decision on players from around the world with the rest of his backroom team.

"A DVD comes down to us, with a sheet of paper. There is a description of the player, his name, his age, his position and the clubs he has played for," said Deborah, who still lives in the family home in Bolton.

"Gary still loves his football, knows all about youth football from his time as the youth team coach at Blackpool, and you can see he picks up when h! e is doi ng it. I have done it with him and so has my son, Luke."

While serving in his new position, Parkinson, who won the Lancashire FA Youth Cup as a coach at Blackpool, has made improvements. He's made visits home and he could get his speech back after undergoing a vocal chord operation. But until Gary regains his ability to speak, don't be surprised if a couple of Boro's January signings are made as a result of the blink of an eye.

Photo: Getty

Sir Alex Ferguson is demanding United top Group C to ensure an Old Trafford bonus in the last 16.

A curious and complicated scenario in the Reds section means that even victory at home tonight against Benfica would not guarantee the job is done.

Basle visit whipping boys Otelul Galati, who have not won a point yet in their debut Champions League campaign, and a win for the Swiss champions will take the group down to the wire.

With United leading Group C on goal difference from Benfica, a win would not yet be enough but it would take the Reds to the verge of Fergies table-topping goal, leaving them just needing a point when they play Basle on December 7.

Avoiding big-hitters such as European Champions Barcelona, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich in the February knockouts is not the main target for the Reds boss.

You hope you do finish top. There are some teams there in the knockout draw youd avoid as thats a little bonus. But that is only one issue, he said.

The most important thing is the second leg is at Old Trafford in the last 16. That is always an advantage.

It has always been our intention to finish top. It has not always been the case.

"We have finished second several times but with the quality of the teams, it doesnt make a great difference. It does make a little difference.

But the main advantage is having the second game at Old Trafford.

It is a big game. It is a game we recognise as a real European game given the history between Benfica and ourselves and the number of great games we have had in the past. It always sticks in your memory bank.

Our last encounter with them in September in Lisbon we drew 1-1 and we did really well. We were good in po! ssession . We deserved the result until the last 15 minutes, when they threatened quite a bit.

This is a really interesting game for both teams. We both want to win so it should make it a really open match. Hopefully we get the result we want.

United fans will be hoping the Reds emerge from the winter Euro break in three months after the group finishes having restored their flair.

The Premier League champions have dug in since the derby mauling at the hands of City to record five wins in all competitions, all achieved with without conceding a goal.

But the adventure and thrills of their early season goal blitz has faded.

However, Fergie insists the Reds are on a roll and believes a glut of injuries knocked them out of their classy stride.

We have won five games in a row. Is that not momentum? he said.

We have played some really good football. We controlled the game in the first half at Swansea. There was never any time when it looked like we were going to lose the match and thats good. When you are away from home and controlling the games you are doing a good job.

We have made some changes in the team since the one that started the season because of injuries. There have been a lot of injuries you dont quite envisage.

Everyone was fresh at the start. We had been through pre-season in the States and it was brilliant with not one injury. Then you are hit with a little list.

It doesnt disrupt us to a great degree but it does unsettle the balance of the team at times. Sometimes we are having to rethink and think about which team to play to win the match, whereas sometimes when the team is in full flow you dont need to worry.

We have had a few issues which we hope we are gradually getting over. Once we get players back in again we will be okay. But the players have addressed the post-derby situation well. The collective thing has been good. < br>We want to keep clean sheets all the time. It is part of the game. It is a team effort. If everyone is working hard off the ball to retain it, it gives you a big advantage.

Our team in the last few weeks have done that. They have all worked really hard in defending the ball. When you get it you hope you produce enough football to win the match.

For Uniteds Portuguese winger Nani, this match is a private derby matter in some ways.

Nani was a product of Sporting Lisbon and the two Portuguese capital sides are bitter rivals.

I have an extra incentive against Benfica because I used to play for Sporting. The games were like United against City, he said.

They were always tough. And I always enjoyed it when we won. I hope tonight we can win again.

I am sure Benfica will play some good football but with a lot of care as well because they are away from home. Their strongest point is the midfield.

If we are able to control the midfield I am sure we have a good chance to get that positive result we want from the game.

Real Madrid would like you to see Ronaldo getting mooned

When Cristiano Ronaldo scored his goal in Real Madrid's 3-2 win over Valencia over the weekend, he celebrated by laying down near the corner -- a move the home fans didn't particularly appreciate. And while we were too busy enjoying Jose Mourinho's piggyback ride on Jose Callejon, one Valencia fan decided to respond to Ronaldo's gesture with one of his own in the form of his naked rear end.

Ronaldo getting mooned probably happens most every day of the week though. That's not what makes this notable. What is notable is that Real Madrid's official photographer snapped a picture of that moment and it was used as the second photo on the official website's match report (which we have partially covered with Jose Mourinho and his finger binoculars).

As of this writing, the uncensored image has been on the site for a good two days, making this perhaps the most successful mooning in history.

Via @RealGRaf

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