As football fans across the globe eagerly anticipate the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, it has transpired that America and England are buying most of the available tickets. The host nation was allocated over 625,000 World Cup tickets, with the USA receiving the next largest allocation of 66,646. England was given around 22,250 tickets. Nobody knows exactly how many English fans will travel to the tournament, but the prospect of a Brazilian World Cup is among the most mouth-watering for several years. England and the US have already qualified and their fans will be hoping for a dream come true by their winning a ticket.
Though England is often referred to as “the home of football”, it is the Brazilians who have truly dominated the competition. With no less than five world cups, Brazil have to be the favorite to win the 2014 World Cup, especially as they’re playing in their home nation. The Italians, Germans and Agentineans are all in with a realistic shot at glory though. Italy’s young squad proved themselves worthy challengers in the 2012 European Championships with some sterling performances against more experienced opposition England and Russia. The shift of footballing power from Spain to Germany this past year means the Germans will be looking for their fourth title, and their young squad of able lads is more than capable of doing it.
World Cup qualifying matches are taking place all over the globe right now and the summer of 2014 is right around the corner.
Among the English players expected to make the trip is Wayne Rooney. Rooney has been in outstanding form this season, following summer rumors that he was leaving his club, Manchester United. His performances are back to the heights of old, with the grit and determination that makes him worth two average players. Some of the younger England players such as Tom Cleverley, Danny Welbeck and Daniel Sturridge will also be expected to bring their A game to the Copa Mundial. The World Cup has long been seen as a proving ground for footballers, a place where they can showcase their abilites and receive instant global recognition. It’s every player’s dream to have a storming World Cup and spend the rest of their career in the spotlight. If you’re a true soccer fan you’ll be in Brazil in 2014 – or you’ll be attending one of the many friendlies and qualifiers that will take place between then and now.
Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti can push his former club Juventus and disciple Antonio Conte closer to the Champions League exit door if they win in Turin on Tuesday.
The two teams, who have won the competition 11 times between them, were both expected to comfortably progress from Group B and Tuesday’s match was seen initially seen as little more than some early sparring for the knockout rounds.
But, after drawing with Galatasaray and Copenhagen and then losing in 2-1 Madrid two weeks ago, Juventus suddenly find themselves fighting for survival.
Ancelotti is unlikely to admit it but he may gain some grim satisfaction if he can help eliminate his former club.
He had two difficult years at Juventus early in his coaching career, where despite twice leading them to second place in Series A he was sacked on the last day of the 2000-01 season.
Conte, who has led Juventus to two successive Serie A titles, was his swashbuckling captain at the time and has since gone on to become of Europe’s top coaches although he has sometimes shown exasperation at his club’s lack of financial clout.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has said he would rather see Borussia Dortmund teammate Robert Lewandowski move to Barcelona than Bayern Munich at the end of the season.
The Polish striker was heavily linked with a switch to Die Roten throughout last summer but was eventually persuaded to stay with BVB for another season after the club refused to negotiate with its Bundesliga rivals.
His Signal Iduna Park contract expires at the end of the current season and the Gabon international is hoping he will not join his side’s fierce rivals.
“If Lewandowski leaves, we would prefer him to join Barcelona rather than Bayern Munich,” the Gabonese international told beIN Sport.
The 24-year-old also revealed that he rejected the advances of Paris Saint-Germain over the summer owing to his desire to experience a different league after five seasons in France.