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Match Picks of the Week

Selected games to watch from British Columbia's top senior men's and women's amateur leagues.
Please check league schedules for late changes.

Friday November 28

VMSL: West Van FC vs Croatia SC
7:00pm Ambleside Park
Two of the top teams in the VMSL’s Premier Division will face off with 3 very important points on the line.

LIWSA: Castaways FC vs Saanich Fusion FC
8:00pm PISE Turf, Camosun College, Saanich

VISL: Saanich Fusion FC vs Bays United Liquor Plus
8:00pm Tyndall Park, Saanich

sunday november 30

MWSL: Victoria Highlanders vs Coastal FC
2:00pm University of Victoria -field #3

FVSL: Abbotsford United vs North Delta Lions
6:00pm Abbotsford Secondary Turf

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This Day in Football History

26 November 1979
For the first time post-match dope-testing was used when four players were checked after the Swindon Town v Brentford F.A. Cup tie.
(Association of Football Statisticians]

Inter FC 2-2 West Van FC
Vancouver Metro Soccer League Premier Division - November 22, 2014 - Trillium Park, Vancouver, BC
Photos by Monique Lamoureaux © for BC Soccer Web - See Photo Gallery for more

wednesday, november 26, 2014

MLS suspends Whitecaps midfielder Sebastian Fernandez four games
Major League Soccer has suspended Vancouver midfielder Sebastian Fernandez four games and fined him an undisclosed amount for a post-match incident following the Whitecaps' Oct. 29 playoff loss to FC Dallas. Yahoo!

Manneh, Salgado graduate from Major League Soccer's Generation adidas program
Vancouver Whitecaps FC confirmed today that Kekuta Manneh and Omar Salgado have graduated from the Generation adidas program, meaning their salaries will begin to count against the club’s salary budget. As a result, Manneh and Salgado will be eligible for selection in next month’s MLS Expansion Draft unless they are one of the 11 protected played. Whitecaps FC

Toronto FC's disappointment at missing playoffs masks record progress in 2014, says Jonathan Osorio
There is a truth about Toronto FC’s 2014 season that might have been overlooked at year’s end. Despite missing the playoffs yet again in the club’s eighth season, Toronto FC enjoyed their strongest year yet in MLS, picking up club-best numbers in wins (11), points (41) and goals (44). MLS

Seattle’s odd couple
Obafemi Martins rolled the ball with the teeth of his boot, ready to spring at the edge of the penalty area. Clint Dempsey flew around him on the right. But the Nigerian’s flick went one way and Dempsey, the other. For once, Seattle Sounders’ strikers were not on the same page. The attack broke down. FIFA

For Canada Only: Watch Seattle Sounders vs LA Galaxy live on MLSsoccer.com this Sunday
There may be no Canadian teams among the MLS final four this year, but MLS fans in Canada still won't have any excuse to miss the MLS Cup Playoff Conference Championship second legs this weekend. First, Saturday's New England Revolution vs. New York Red Bulls match will be broadcast live on TSN2 and RDS2 in Canada (3 pm ET, NBCSN and UDN in the USA).

More Thoughts on the Role of Self Assessment in Coaching Development
Following on from my previous blog, I would like to expand a little on the development of a coach and some of the attributes, behaviours and competencies that I believe we all display on our journey. The View Frpm The West Coast

youth soccer

Mid-Isle club producing top players
The Ladysmith-based Mid-Isle Soccer Club is moving more players than every to play at a higher level. Club vice-president Mike Rankin confirmed that 25 players who had previously played at house level with Mid-Isle are now playing for Upper Island Storm in the Vancouver Island Premier League this season. VIPL is the highest level for youth soccer on the island. Nanaimo Daily News

the local game

Inter FC holds heavily-favoured West Van FC to a 2-2 draw (Photo: Monique Lamoureaux)Inter FC holds heavily-favoured West Van FC to a 2-2 draw
All 6 VMSL Premier Division matches were played this past weekend, with only one ‘semi-upset’ taking place as the underdog Inter FC held the heavily-favoured West Van FC to a 2-2 draw. As a result of West Van’s tie—and ICST Pegasus’ 3-0 victory over the Vancouver Olympics—the gap between the two top teams grew to 4 points.

Highlanders' MWSL Squad Improving
Looking to get back in the win column, the Metro Women's Soccer League team improved on their previous match result but came up just short with a 3-2 defeat against Coastal FC, Sunday, Nov. 23 at South Surrey Athletic Field 3.

Highlanders' LIWSL squad continues to improve in weekend victory over Fusion
The Highlanders’ Lower Island Women’s Soccer League team played host to Saanich Fusion, Saturday, Nov. 22 at Lochside Turf, earning a 3-0 victory.

team canada

Canada’s goalkeepers reflect on McLeod’s 100th appearance
As a member of the group of players that burst into the national consciousness at the FIFA U-19 Women’s World Cup Canada 2002, goalkeeper Erin McLeod was one of the prominent members of the team as she backstopped the Canadians all the way to the final. Canada Soccer

fifa women's world cup canada 2015

Canada ready to welcome the world: Official Draw on 6 December
There has been a lot for football fans to enjoy this year, with the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ providing the high point. And 2015 will be no different, a year in which the FIFA Women’s World Cup Canada 2015™ will take centre stage. The countdown to the premier competition in women’s football will begin on 6 December, when the city of Ottawa hosts the Final Draw. Canada Soccer

world football

FIFA’s Jerome Valcke says it will take years to rebuild reputation after scandals
FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke acknowledged Tuesday that it will take “years to rebuild our reputation” following the World Cup bidding corruption investigation. But Valcke insisted that Sony and Emirates airline are not ending their FIFA sponsorships to protest against allegations of bribery and favour-seeking that have engulfed world football in the four years since Russia was awarded the 2018 World Cup and Qatar was voted the 2022 hosts. Canada.com

British executive Whelan risks jail if he returns to Brazil to face World Cup scalping charges
A British executive charged in an alleged World Cup ticket-scalping scheme could be sent back to jail if he returns to Brazil. Ray Whelan, an executive of Match Services — the hospitality and ticketing partner of football's world governing body FIFA — was arrested on July 14. That was the day after Germany defeated Argentina 1-0 in the World Cup final. WFP

Lionel Messi smashes Champions League goal record
Barcelona's Lionel Messi scored a hat trick to shatter the Champions League goalscoring record by taking his tally in the competition to 74 in a 4-0 win over APOEL on Tuesday. The previous record of 71 had been set by former Real Madrid and Schalke striker Raul over the course of 142 matches. CBC

Convicted match-fixer offers solution to problem
Limiting online betting to matches in the world’s top leagues would help cut down on fixing because those games are not as easy to manipulate, according to convicted match-fixer Wilson Raj Perumal. Sportsnet

Torpedo Moscow penalized 3 games for racial abuse
Torpedo Moscow has been ordered to close part of its stadium for three games by the Russian Football Union as punishment for its fans racially abusing opposition players. Sportsnet

Valencia discards logo due to Batman similaritiesValencia discards logo due to Batman similarities
Spanish football club Valencia says it will not use a new version of its bat logo that comic book maker DC Comics had opposed for being too similar to its Batman symbol.

Arab-Israeli soccer match ends in violence
Tensions arising from Israel’s recent incidents of violence spread Sunday night to a soccer game between the Arab-Israeli team Bnei Shakhnin and Beitar Jerusalem, whose fans are of the ultranationalist Jewish tendency. Vancouver Desi

tuesday, november 25, 2014

VOTE: Semifinals set for 2014 Whitecaps FC Goal of the Year
The semifinals are set. After a month of voting, the field for the 2014 Whitecaps FC Goal of the Year, presented by Budweiser, has been narrowed down to four. Now, it’s time to determine the final two. Whitecaps FC

Should the Whitecaps Bring Back Andy O'Brien?
The veteran center back is open to the idea of a pay cut, but is that incentive enough for the 'Caps to bring him back? 86 Forever

Why Adam Braz? Why Adam Braz?
There was only ever one man for Matt Jordan’s old job of technical director. The Impact enjoyed the initial discussions with their candidate. So much so that, while they thought about other candidates, they only met with one, and he’s their new TD: Adam Braz.

Canadian Akindele voted MLS Rookie of the Year
Dallas forward and Calgary native Tesho Akindele has been voted Major League Soccer's rookie of the year. He scored seven goals during the regular season and had one in the playoffs, against Vancouver. TSN

Seattle Sounders' Chad Marshall wins 2014 MLS Defender of the Year award
Major League Soccer announced on Tuesday that Seattle Sounders FC and MLS veteran Chad Marshall has been named 2014 Defender of the Year after leading the Rave Green to their first-ever Supporters’ Shield and their fourth US Open Cup title.

Columbus Crew SC's Michael Parkhurst, Philadelphia Union win 2014 Fair Play Awards
Columbus Crew SC center back Michael Parkhurst picked up the third XBox Individual Fair Play award of his career on Monday, and the Philadelphia Union won the XBox Team Fair Play award for the first time in their five-year history. MLS

Mark Geiger named MLS Referee of the Year; Paul Scott voted Assistant Referee of the Year
Major League Soccer announced on Tuesday that Mark Geiger has been voted 2014 Referee of the Year, his second such honor, while Paul Scott was voted 2014 Assistant Referee of the Year. MLS

Raul Fernandez, Luis Robles, Donovan Ricketts and Nick Rimando up for 2014 Save of the Year
It's time to give the goalkeepers a little love. With goals up this year nothing came easy for 'keepers around the league, but they still managed to remind us what they can do with some truly stunning saves. MLS

LA Galaxy welcome another physical contest ahead of second leg with Seattle Sounders FC
Galaxy central defender Omar Gonzalez, who admitted after the Seattle victory that he “kept his distance” from Sounders players due to his fear of being issued a second yellow, revealed that he’ll be more aggressive in the second leg in Seattle. “Next week, that second yellow card doesn’t matter,” Gonzalez said. LA Galaxy

Petke: If BWP didn't know about yellow-card accumulation, then its my fault
Head coach Mike Petke rather diplomatically took the blame for not telling Wright-Phillips the accumulation rule as the forward said after the match that he was unaware of the caution points. “I don't know. I guess it's my fault and I'll take that to blame. I have to realize now that every step I have to speak about. Every microscopic step I guess." Big Apple Soccer

Referees grab the spotlight in MLS playoffs
If the goal of a referee is to go unnoticed, the two referees in Sunday's MLS conference finals failed miserably. One dominated the post-game conversation for the cards he handed out; the other for the card he didn't use. Soccer America

New York City FC reveal away jersey for 2015 expansion season New York City FC reveal away jersey for 2015 expansion season
Ten days after revealing their home kit for the 2015 season, New York City FC unveiled their away kit for their inaugural season on Monday. The kit - in a primary color of black, in contrast to the "City Blue" of the primary - has the same shade of blue and orange as secondary colors. MLS

Major League Soccer is evolving into a closed shop for American coaches
Are we living in the breakthrough epoch for American soccer coaching? After all, the four teams in action in Major League Soccer’s conference finals this weekend are all coached by Americans, and across the league, clubs are overwhelmingly choosing domestic coaches over imports. Soccer Gods

LA Galaxy's Robbie Rogers finds happiness on soccer field as openly gay man, pens memoir
Los Angeles Galaxy soccer star Robbie Rogers wants some company, now that he's the last man standing as an openly gay athlete in a U.S. professional league. Jason Collins recently retired from the NBA, and Michael Sam is without an NFL team. That leaves Rogers, the first openly gay player in Major League Soccer, hoping for a bigger fraternity. Canada.com

youth soccer

WATCH: EA SPORTS BC Soccer Premier League crown champions at 2014 Cup Finals
Earlier this month, the EA SPORTS BC Soccer Premier League officially finished its fall league season with the 2014 BCSPL Cup Finals, hosted by Coquitlam Metro-Ford SC. Watch the above video for our wrap-up of the entertaining weekend and to learn more about Vancouver Whitecaps FC’s involvement in the EA SPORTS BCSPL. Whitecaps FC

team canada

Canada WNT in control in first of two games against Sweden
In their penultimate game of 2014, Canada’s Women’s National Team looked like a confident group of players that are fired up about hosting the world in 2015. That appearance was reflected in the performance and result as the Canadian team were scarcely under too much trouble and got the goal they needed to pick up a 1:0 win over Sweden in the first of Women’s International Friendlies between the two nations. CSA

Canada blanks Sweden in women's soccer friendly
Jonelle Filigno scored her 11th career goal for Canada in a 1-0 victory over Sweden on Monday in the first of two women's international soccer friendlies between the two nations. Filigno scored late in the first half when she ran onto a through pass by Sophie Schmidt and beat Sweden goalkeeper Carola Soberg who tried running off the line, but in vain, to stop the attempt.  CBC

fifa women's world cup canada 2015

No word yet on whether goal-line technology will be used at 2015 Women's World Cup
FIFA has confirmed that goal-line technology will be used at next month's FIFA Club World Cup in Morocco. But there is no word yet on whether it will be part of the 2015 Women's World Cup in Canada. "At the time of writing, we can't give you any confirmation," a FIFA spokesman said by email in response to a Canadian Press query. "The information will be communicated in due time." Canada.com

Road to Vancouver: Germany spoils Wembley party
England went 10-for-10 in qualifying for the 2015 Women’s World Cup,  but it is still waiting for its first victory over Germany. The reigning European champions beat England, 3-0, before a record crowd of 45,619 for the first women’s match at Wembley Stadium since it re-opened in 2007. inSoccer

women's world football

Record crowd at Wembley for England women's team
Equality came to the self-proclaimed Home of Football on Sunday. More than seven years after the new Wembley opened, the England women's team was finally allowed to follow its male counterpart by playing in the $1.2 billion national stadium. USA Today

world football

German league chief tells FIFA president Sepp Blatter to resignGerman league chief tells FIFA president Sepp Blatter to resign
German league chief Reinhard Rauball says he called FIFA president Sepp Blatter to ask him to resign over the awarding of the 2022 World Cup to Qatar. “In contrast to others who just do it via the media, I personally called Mr. Blatter some time ago and urged him to resign,” Rauball told this week’s Kicker magazine. Metro

Russian minister says World Cup 2018 host city Kaliningrad could be cut over stadium delays
Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko says the city of Kaliningrad could lose the right to host 2018 World Cup matches unless it resolves a dispute over the site of its stadium this week. WFP

Member associations in line for bumper Yuletide development bonus from FIFA
As things stand, member associations from Albania to Zambia can expect, if they complete the paperwork satisfactorily, to receive financial assistance of $750,000 in the months before they assemble next May to elect a FIFA President for the 2015-19 period. Inside World Football

Coca-Cola lashes Fifa over World Cup corruption
Coca-Cola has become the first big World Cup sponsor to attack Fifa over the “disappointing” handling of its botched corruption investigation. The soft drinks brand, whose financial backing is worth more than £300m to world football’s embattled governing body, broke ranks this weekend to voice its concern. The Sunday Times

Camilo adds another Golden Boot
Former Vancouver Whitecaps forward Camilo Sanvezzo became the first player in history to win both the MLS and Liga MX golden boots, after finishing with 12 goals for Queretaro in the Apertura 2014 tournament. Alas, Queretaro missed the Liga MX playoffs. Twitter

Brazilian clubs in crisis as wages unpaid and debts rocket
Just four months after the biggest football event on earth took place in Brazil, the country has lurched into a new crisis with as many as 50% of current professional players and officials unpaid. Estimates say that the wage crisis has hit up to 90% of the professional clubs in the country. Inside World Football

Rayo Vallecano Vow To Pay 85-Year-Old Woman’s Rent After She Was Evicted From Her Home Near Their Stadium
Despite having a yearly operating budget (€7million) that is comfortably less than half of Cristiano Ronaldo’s current annual salary across the city at Real Madrid (€17million), Rayo Vallecano have stepped in to pay the rent of a local 85-year-old resident after she was evicted from her home of the last five decades by Spanish authorities. Who Ate All the Pies

monday, november 24, 2014

Galaxy edge Sounders in Game 1 of Western final
With a 1-0 victory in the home leg of their Western Conference final series vs. the Seattle Sounders, the Los Angeles are in the driver's seat on the road to the MLS Championship game. Midfielder Marcelo Sarvas scored in the 52nd minute to give the Galaxy the victory Sunday in front of a standing-room-only crowd of 27,000 at the StubHub Center. Canoe

Despite missed chances, LA Galaxy full of confidence ahead of second leg vs Seattle Sounders
The last time the LA Galaxy faced off against the Seattle Sounders with an MLS Cup appearance in the balance, they streaked to a 3-0 home victory in the first leg, then did what was required up north to reach the promised land. MLS

Revolution take 2-1 lead back home
Midfielder Jermaine Jones' goal in the 86th minute gave the New England Revolution a 2-1 win over the New York Red Bulls in the first leg of the MLS Eastern Conference finals before 25,000 at Red Bull Arena. 24 Hours

New York Red Bulls' uncharacteristic finishing woes prove costly in first-leg loss: "It’s a punch to the gut"
Chances were plentiful. Goals? Not so much. The New York Red Bulls lost, 2-1, to the New England Revolution in an intense first leg of the Eastern Conference Championship on Sunday afternoon, and perhaps the biggest reason for the home setback was a lack of accuracy in front of goal. MLS

New York Red Bulls captain Thierry Henry confirms he will play at Gillette Stadium in playoff second leg
Thierry Henry has never played a game on the turf surface at Gillette Stadium. He will next Saturday. After falling to the New England Revolution, 2-1, in the first leg of the Eastern Conference Championship on Sunday, Henry told reporters that he would partake in next Saturday’s decisive leg. MLS

Whitecaps confirm launch of USL PRO team playing out of UBC's T-Bird Stadium
The Whitecaps will launch a USL PRO team in 2015 and that’s easily the most important news of the week for the club, its young players, and its supporters. Another season without consistent, competitive games for a growing group of talented kids — many of them Canadian — would have been a shame, and a waste. The Province

Vancouver Whitecaps hope to extend Cascadia rivalry with Seattle & Portland into USL PRO
"One of the things that we'll have at the USL level that we also have at the MLS level is the Cascadia rivalry that we have with Portland and Seattle," Lenarduzzi said. "In principle, it would be great to match up that way, to take advantage of travelling supporters coming up and perhaps staying the next day. The idea of co-ordinating USL PRO games, when it would be appropriate." MLS

Impact name ex-player Braz as technical director
Adam Braz was named technical director of the Montreal Impact on Monday. The former Impact and Toronto FC defender served as Montreal’s manager from 2011 to 2013. He replaced Matt Jordan, who left on Nov. 4 to become vice-president and general manager of the Houston Dynamo. Sportsnet

Impact signs goalkeeper Evan Bush to new contract
The Montreal Impact announced on Friday that the club has come to terms with goalkeeper Evan Bush on a new contract. Bush, 28, reached career highs in 2014, starting 13 games, including three shutouts in his third season in MLS, his fourth career with the Impact. Montreal Impact

Justin Morrow on his training stint in Germany
Justin Morrow was Toronto FC’s most reliable player in 2014. That isn’t a bold leap or hyperbole. Morrow was consistent and dependable at left back, providing steady play for a backline that dealt with a number of injuries throughout the season. Morrow and Collen Warner spent the last week training with Werder Bremen.  Toronto FC

Orlando City coach Adrian Heath inks contract extension through 2017
Orlando City has rewarded coach Adrian Heath for helping to build the club that earned promotion to Major League Soccer. Heath has signed a contract extension with Orlando City that could keep him with the team through the end of the 2017 season, a source with direct knowledge of the agreement told the Orlando Sentinel. Orlando Sentinel

Landon Donovan Is Retiring From Soccer With No Regrets
For someone who can make playing soccer look so easy, Landon Donovan has never been shy about conveying how hard the sport can be for him. He has made no secret that the responsibility and the trappings that came with being the standard-bearer of American soccer for more than a decade had long ago become a burden. New York Times

MLS Stadium Experience Rankings
Major League Soccer saw average attendance in 2014 reach an all-time high, with more than 19,000 attending each match on average. You should expect that number to continue to grow with the folding of Chivas USA during the 2014 season, and the addition of New York City FC and Orlando City SC in 2015. Most important for stadium travel enthusiasts though, is that the experience of attending an MLS game continues to get better. Stadium Journey

youth soccer

Pannu wears the golden hat, scores three to lead Panorama Ridge to BC prep soccer title
Kerman Pannu, en route to tournament MVP honours, scored all three of his team’s goals Saturday as Panorama Ridge blanked North Vancouver’s reigning champion Sutherland Sabres 3-0 in the provincial final at Burnaby Lake Sports Complex.  The Province

university soccer

SFU's Blagojevic Named West Region Player of the Year
After a superb senior season, Simon Fraser University men's soccer striker Jovan Blagojevic has been named the 2014 West Region Player of the Year. The Coquitlam native registered the best season of his career in 2014, scoring 18 goals in 18 games, and earning 38 points for the Clan, the most of any Great Northwest Athletic Conference or West Region Player this year. SFU

CONCACAF Champions League

Dates, times set for DC United and Montreal Impact quarterfinal series
Eight clubs remain in the CONCACAF Champions League, and now we know when and where the quarterfinal matchups will take place. The two-leg semifinals between the quarterfinal winners are scheduled to begin later in March. MLS

team Canada

Canada WNT look to build momentum as 2014 ends
Canada’s Women’s National Team may be completing their 2014 calendar behind closed doors but the preparation is just as intense as if they were playing in front of thousands. On Monday, Canada will play Sweden in the first of two Women’s International Friendlies near the California coastline as both countries continue their preparations for June’s FIFA Women’s World Cup Canada 2015™. Canada Soccer

women's world football

Play-off final still perfectly poised
As the year draws slowly to a close, one important result is still in the process of being decided as the Netherlands and Italy contest the play-off final to determine the final European participant in the FIFA Women’s World Cup Canada 2015™. Meanwhile, Germany and England, as well as France and New Zealand played one another in friendly matches. FIFA

Women’s football has become unrecognisable
Selling out at the new Wembley Stadium has always been a significant accomplishment for any sport to attain, as it fundamentally highlights a game’s popularity with the viewing public. Mark Sampson’s England women’s side may have lost 3-0 against Germany, but it was against the backdrop of a passionate 45,619 crowd. FIFA

world football

GoalControl-4D to feature at FIFA Club World Cup in Morocco
It will be a hat-trick of appearances for goal-line technology at the FIFA Club World Cup with GoalControl GmbH set to be the official GLT provider for Morocco 2014. FIFA’s club showpiece was where it all began for GLT back in 2012 when Hawk-Eye and GoalRef made history in Japan. FIFA

deVos: 'Crimes Against Defending' prolific at every level
I keep a folder on my computer entitled "Crimes Against Defending." In this folder, I collect examples of poor defensive play, poor marking from set pieces and any other offence against the art of defending. Yes, good defending is an art form - and it is on the verge of becoming extinct. TSN

Liverpool's woes continue with loss to Palace
Liverpool's season went from bad to worse on Sunday, when it surrendered an early lead to lose 3-1 at struggling Crystal Palace in the Premier League. After just 12 games, last year's runner-up is failing to hit the heights that saw the side push Manchester City to the final day of the title race. CBC

Bad luck doesn't explain Man City’s woes
It has to be said that Manchester City have played some pretty tough opponents in the Champions League over the past few seasons, but the “unlucky” excuse just doesn’t stand up to close scrutiny. Sportsnet

Messi far more than just great statistics
Most of the reports on how Lionel Messi spent his weekend opened up with something like this: “Barcelona’s Lionel Messi broke Telmo Zarra’s all-time La Liga goal-scoring record of 251 goals with a hat trick in the 5-1 win over Sevilla on Saturday.” Not bad, I’ll admit. Sportsnet

Italy goalkeeper Perin fined, not dropped from Genoa squad for drunk driving
Genoa coach Gian Piero Gasperini has announced the club will fine Mattia Perin but retain him in the squad after the Italy goalkeeper was stopped for drunk driving. The 22-year-old Perin was stopped in his Volkswagen Golf by police in Genoa on Friday night and found to be over the allowable blood-alcohol limit following a breathalyzer test. TSN

Once at the pinnacle of club football, Milan derby doesn't even impact title race anymore
A decade ago, the Milan derby was the pinnacle of club football, twice played in the final stages of the Champions League. These days, when Inter and AC Milan meet, it's a second-rate spectacle. How far the two Milan clubs have fallen was on full display in a 1-1 draw Sunday. WFP

Auckland City on track for Morocco with local success
Auckland City FC’s preparations for the FIFA Club World Cup Morocco 2014 remain very much on track after the New Zealanders won the inaugural OFC President’s Cup on home turf. Auckland, however, needed a strong comeback before overcoming the challenge of growing rivals Amicale of Vanuatu in the final. FIFA

The Best on a banknote The Best on a banknote
This week marks the ninth anniversary of George Best’s passing. To mark its first, The Ulster Bank produced the above banknote in tribute to such a national icon. The twinkle-toed winger never got to represent Northern Ireland in a FIFA World Cup™, but he did inspire Manchester United to multiple titles. FIFA

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