Soccer

Messi sets record of 86 for goals in a year

Supersport :    Barcelona forward Lionel Messi set a record for goals scored in a calendar year of 86 when he netted his second of the night in a La Liga game at Real Betis on Sunday, beating Gerd Mueller's 40-year-old record of 85.The 25-year-old World Player of the Year earlier equalled the record when he picked up the ball in a central position in the 16th minute and left the Betis defence standing before sending an angled shot across goal into the bottom right corner.

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Five-star Falcao mauls Deportivo

Supersport :    Radamel Falcao became the first La Liga player in a decade to score five goals in a match as Atletico Madrid thrashed Deportivo La Coruna 6-0 to keep the pressure on Barcelona at the top of La Liga on Sunday.The win moved Atletico to within three points of Barcelona ahead of the Catalans' game at Real Betis later on Sunday.On Saturday Real Madrid kept up the pressure on the top two with a 3-2 win at Valladolid, but remain five points behind Atletico in third.Falcao hit a double along with a Diego Costa strike to put Atletico out of sight by halftime.

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Terry out for CWC, but Lampard fit ahead of Chelsea trip to Sunderland

Goal :    Chelsea captain John Terry has been ruled out for the Blues' foray into the FIFA Club World Cup, with a lingering knee injury preventing him from suiting up this weekend against Sunderland and beyond."John Terry will not fly, because the doctor was talking with me, I was talking with John, and because maybe [with] an inflammation, to fly would not be the best solution for him so he will stay. Obviously he will not be [available] tomorrow and he will not go to Japan," Chelsea interim coach Rafa Benitez said.

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Platini: Fans will benefit from changes to Euro 2020

Goal :    UEFA president Michel Platini feels that complaints regarding the changes made to format of the Euros are not justified.The organization announced plans to have the tournament take place in several European cities rather than one or two hosting nations in 2020, and the idea was met by heavy criticism from fans and the media.The 57-year-old, however, is adamant that the decision was the right one, and explained how football fans can take advantage of the new system.

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Ronaldinho: Neymar will be the best in the world

Goal :    Atletico Mineiro forward Ronaldinho is of the opinion that while Barcelona star Lionel Messi is better than Real Madrid attacker Cristiano Ronaldo, neither of them will be able to match Neymar once he realizes his full potential.The 32-year-old Brazilian, who made a move from Flamengo to his current team at the start of the Brasileiro campaign, says Messi is the best footballer in the world now, but believes that this will not last long."Cristiano has been making history for many years now, but Messi is the best in the world, and one day Neymar will be the best," Ronaldinho told ESPN."For me Messi is the best in the world. For the last few years he has played at a level of football we have never seen before.

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Redknapp refuses to rule out January move for Anelka

Goal :    QPR manager Harry Redknapp has refused to rule out a move for Shanghai Shenhua striker Nicolas Anelka, describing the forward as a player who “would be of interest” to several clubs.Redknapp is reported to be in the market for a new striker in January, with Andrew Johnson and Bobby Zamora both suffering from injury troubles, leaving the club with Djibril Cisse as the club's only recognized front man.And while he remained coy on links with the French forward – who has previously played for Real Madrid, Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool – the former Tottenham boss did not rule out a potential move for the 33-year-old.

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Youth UEFA Champions League to start next season

Goal :    UEFA president Michel Platini has revealed that the European Youth League will begin next season.The 32 clubs that will qualify for the 2013-14 Champions League will also have the opportunity to let their Under-19 players participate in a tournament that mirrors Europe's elite club competition."We believe that the UEFA Youth League is an attractive additional proposition to the Champions League clubs," Platini told UEFA's official website. "We have now created a competitive opportunity for youth players to be involved in international matches at club level.

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Roberto Mancini: Man United are favourites

TEAMtalk :    Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini has labelled arch-rivals Manchester United as title favourites heading into this weekend's derby.Mancini regularly compared his team unfavourably to United - and even wrote off their title chances at one point - only for them to pip their neighbours to the Premier League crown last season.He denies that was a tactic to motivate his players and insists City, who now trail United by three points at the top, will be the underdogs at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday.Mancini said: "We can't change the history.

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Three-week lay-off for Anderson

TEAMtalk :    Sir Alex Ferguson has confirmed Manchester United midfielder Anderson will be out for at least three weeks with a hamstring injury.The Brazilian limped off during Saturday's win at Reading.

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Steven Gerrard heads England nominees

TEAMtalk :    England skipper Steven Gerrard heads the five-man shortlist for the Three Lions' 2012 Player of the Year.Gerrard became only the sixth England player to reach 100 caps in Sweden last month and was regarded as one of the stand-out performers at Euro 2012, when Roy Hodgson's team were knocked out in the quarter-finals by Italy.

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