World Soccer News for week of 2/19 Ozren Podnar reports
Plague of injuries torments Barcelona
An unprecedented wave of injuries and suspensions led to Barcelona’s first defeat in the Spanish League and the first away defeat in all competitions this season. Four defensive players were injured and two suspended within a couple of days of the big match between Atletico Madrid and Barcelona at Vicente Calderon forcing Josep Guardiola to play winger Jeffren Suarez as the right full back.
Without Alves, Abidal, Toure and Chigrinski due to muscular injuries plus the red-carded Pique and Marquez, Barcelona lost 2-1, allowing Real Togel Hongkong Madrid to close the gap at the top to two points with 16 matches to go.
Not only did Barcelona lose the points but also two more players, as Keita and Xavi succumbed to – you’ve guessed – muscular injuries! The events led to an emergency meeting of Barcelona’s medical staff in hope of ascertaining the causes of the players’ muscles’ fragility and preventing future casualties.
Buffon under fire for blaspheming
Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon has upset the religious part of the Italian public for his alleged swearing during the Juventus vs Genoa game. The sports programs have employed lip readers in order to clarify if Buffon took God’s name in vain.
The public interest is due to the fact that in a couple of weeks swearing in soccer will become an offence punishable by a red card if the referee hears it, or with a ban if the foul language is captured on film.
The rule, approved by the FA, has not yet entered into force, but Buffon’s apparent blaspheming against God has turned into an experiment for the media. The question on everybody’s mind is how the soccer authorities will prove what exactly a player shouted just based on his lip movement or facial expression.
Buffon admitted that punishing somebody who offends God or the faithful may be the right thing to do, but failed to clarify what he himself said on the occasion and …