malakai Wheeler

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Team of the World Cup after the group stage

BRASILIA, Brazil (AP) — Imagine having World Cup standouts Lionel Messi, Neymar, James Rodriguez and Arjen Robben all in the same team.<p>After two …

20 things we’ve learned from the group stages

<b>1 Don’t write off Europe just yet</b><p>It’s been a poor tournament for the European teams, with a number of big nations – notably Italy, England and Portugal – failing to live up to expectations. But the situation is no worse than in 2010, when seven teams also failed to reached the second round. Six …

World Cup 2014: Vincent Kompany stands alone in a tournament seriously short on top-class defenders

This World Cup will not be remembered for quality defending, but while Brazil and even Germany struggle at the back, Belgium's centre-back sweeps all before him<p>If I was a <b>Premier League</b> manager with £100 million to spend on the best two central defenders at this <b>World Cup</b>, I would probably spend it …

136 Goals, 300 Million Tweets: World Cup by the Numbers

The group stage is over, the World Cup is taking a breather — so it's an excellent time to look back at a tournament that has already produced some …

World Cup tickets through time

FIFA confirms Gisele Bundchen will be part of World Cup final ceremonies

Brazilian model Gisele Bundchen will be part of World Cup final ceremonies on July 13.<p>FIFA confirms Gisele Bundchen will be part of World Cup final ceremonies<p>06/27/2014<p>Brazilian model Gisele Bundchen will be part of World Cup final ceremonies on July 13.<p>However, FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke …

'Portugal wore Ronaldo like a diamond ring they never had'

The Real Madrid forward has been criticised by a coach in his homeland for his failure to believe in his international team-mates during the 2014 World Cup<p>Cristiano Ronaldo has been lambasted by Manuel Jose for treating his Portugal team-mates like "subordinates" following their group stage World …

Owed bonuses paid to Nigerian players

Nigeria's World Cup squad has received the bonuses which the players were owed, the team spokesman said Friday, as they returned to training ahead of their second round match against France.<p>The comments followed earlier reports that players were demanding unpaid bonuses and that a training session …

Luke Shaw joins Manchester United from Southampton on a four-year deal

Luke Shaw has become the fourth most expensive defender in world football after Manchester United continued their summer rebuild by signing the teenager for an initial £27m from Southampton.<p>United completed their second big-money transfer inside 24 hours on Friday when the 18-year-old England …

Vincent Kompany Injury: Updates on Belgium Star's Groin and Return

<b>Updates from Friday, July 4</b><p>Belgium boss Marc Wilmots has confirmed Vincent Kompany will be fit to face Argentina in the World Cup quarter-finals.<p>Kompany has been struggling with a groin issue, but according to the <i>Daily Mail</i>'s John Drayton, Wilmots gave the following brief statement on his key …

Soccer

World Cup 2014: Brazil playmaker Oscar acknowledges his debt to futsal as host nation prepare to face Chile

Chelsea player is not the first Brazilian to hone his early talents with a smaller, heavier ball on an indoor five-a-side pitch<p>When <b>Brazil</b> are in possession, when their players are steering the ball through tight areas, their debt to futsal is demonstrated. When Oscar and Fernandinho struck those …

FIFA defends Suarez biting ban that many call excessive | Reuters

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - FIFA defended the harsh punishment it handed down to Uruguay striker Luis Suarez for biting an opponent during the World Cup, despite complaints on Friday from his coach, politicians and even the man he bit that the record penalty was excessive.<p>Uruguayan striker Luis …

Mark Lawrenson: Liverpool Cannot Trust Luis Suarez and Need to Offload Striker This Summer

Liverpool legend Mark Lawrenson has urged the Reds to offload Luis Suarez in the summer transfer window.<p>The Uruguayan striker was involved in an …

Can the Greeks finally dream?

Coming into the World Cup, Greece and Costa Rica were not given much of a chance by neutral observers, pundits, or odds makers. To everyones' surprise, Costa Rica topped a Group of Death, while Greece's injury time goal against the Ivory Coast sent them through to the knockout phase of the World …

Liverpool and Manchester United Tussle Over Ghana's Andre Ayew

Liverpool and Manchester United are reportedly set to go head-to-head for Ghana's World Cup star Andre Ayew, according to the Express.<p>Ayew was in …

Brazil v Chile: Hosts furious at claims that Howard Webb will be under pressure to let them win

Brazil react furiously to provocative suggestions by Alexis Sanchez that English referee will feel that the World Cup hosts should triumph in last-16 tie<p>Brazil have reacted furiously to provocative suggestions by Chile that English referee Howard Webb could be under pressure to allow the World Cup …

World Cup 2014: Luiz Felipe Scolari admits to Brazil nerves

Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari admits his players are becoming "more afraid" as they prepare to face Chile in the first of the World Cup knockout ties.

Belgium: One team, divided nation

SAO PAULO (AP) — A group of French-speaking fans were looking for a cab to go to Belgium's World Cup game. Coming from the other direction on the …

The Dossier: Is Lallana really what Liverpool need?

The attacker carries an English-player premium that inflates his pricetag but, even though the Reds have more pressing needs, he could fulfill a crucial role at Anfield next term<p><b>ANALYSIS</b><br>By Ewan Roberts<p>With the Southampton fire-sale still ablaze, Liverpool have returned to plunder St Mary's for a …

The story of Brazil's 'sacred' yellow and green jersey

<b>When Brazil play their first knockout game of this World Cup on Saturday, a football-crazy nation will be rooting for them. But many lovers of the game elsewhere will also be hoping to see the daring, imaginative play they have come to associate with the distinctive yellow shirt.</b><p>It is an …

Why this female football manager quitting should matter to you

This week, the first woman ever to manage a men's football team walked off the job, amid a torrent of sexist jibes. Claire Cohen explains why her departure from this male-dominated world is a disaster for us all<p>Forty-nine days. That’s how long the first woman to manage a men’s football team has …

Soccer

Neymar: Pele convinced me to snub Chelsea

The Barcelona forward states that the Brazil legend and the president of Santos both convinced him to turn down a move to the Premier League club following a "huge" offer in 2010<p>Neymar has revealed that Brazil legend Pele convinced him to stay at Santos rather than move to the Premier League after …

Luis Suarez given a hero's welcome at Montevideo airport as Uruguay fans flock to hail striker after bite ban

Uruguay supporters gather at Montevideo's airport to greet the return of Luis Suarez - and even the President turns up<p>World Cup outcast Luis Suárez was yesterday treated to a hero's welcome as he arrived back in Uruguay and gained the unexpected support of the rival he bit, Italy's Giorgio …

Round of 16 preview: Colombia v Uruguay

Instead of a matchup between two of the world's top strikers, the round of 16 game between Colombia and Uruguay at the World Cup will be a test of which team copes best without its talisman.<p>Suarez was banned by FIFA on Thursday from all football for four months for biting Italy defender Giorgio …

Brazil's attack worries Pele

Brazil legend Pele tells BBC Sport's Alan Shearer that the host nation can go on and win the 2014 World Cup, but he has concerns over their attacking options.<p>Pele does believe that striker Neymar has a "great" future and hopes he can replicate his own World Cup winning form.<p>Brazil face Chile on …

B/R Experts' World Cup Predictions: Plotting the Bracket

The World Cup has reached the end of the group stage and Bleacher Report's experts have made their predictions on how they think the knockout phase will pan out, all the way up to the final at the Maracana.<p>Check out the following slides to see how they feel the bracket will play out and if there …

Soccer

Liverpool must help Luis Suárez, believes Kenny Dalglish

The former Liverpool player and manager Kenny Dalglish is confident the club will not turn their back on Luis Suárez, but believes the striker needs help to control his emotions.<p>The Uruguayan was banned by Fifa from being involved in any football-related activity for four months after biting the …