The tiny Brazilian club that fooled North Korea – ‘They would have been angry if we had won’

The Athletic

Everyone seems to have a slightly different estimate of how many people were outside the stadium on that strange November afternoon, but the consensus is that it was a lot. As the bus crept through the crowd, the Brazilian footballers on board stared out of the windows. Locals — tens of thousands of them, on … Read more

USWNT’s loss to Mexico was a jarring reminder that the team’s mystique is gone

For those who weren’t following along during the 2011 World Cup qualifying cycle — in which the U.S. lost to Mexico in the CONCACAF semifinals before Alex Morgan finally sent the U.S. through in a playoff series against Italy — matches against Mexico might have felt like a rivalry in name only. The U.S. women’s … Read more

Neville’s ‘blue billion-pound bottle jobs’ line will immortalise Chelsea’s pain

Not all losses are created equal — and no defeat in football is worse than a banter one. “In extra time, it’s been Klopp’s kids against the blue billion-pound bottle jobs,” said Sky Sports co-commentator Gary Neville, succinctly and indisputably establishing the dominant narrative of a surreal Carabao Cup final almost as soon as Virgil … Read more

Dani Alves – from 43 trophies to four years in prison

The Athletic

Dani Alves, who was this morning sentenced to four and a half years in prison in Spain after being found guilty of sexual assault, was, until very recently, one of global football’s golden boys. An exuberant, technical right-back, he was a major part of the Barcelona team that set new standards in the European game … Read more

Robert Lewandowski was Barcelona’s big post-Messi gamble. It hasn’t entirely paid off

The Athletic

“Everything Robert won at Bayern Munich, the goals he scored, it was all with the aim of ending up where he is now: playing for Barcelona.” Robert Lewandowski’s career has been full of targets, but two summers ago he fulfilled what is fair to describe as his ultimate ambition. The quote above comes from a … Read more

Sir Jim Ratcliffe on Manchester United, Old Trafford, Sheikh Jassim and Mason Greenwood: Full transcript

The Athletic

On Tuesday evening, Sir Jim Ratcliffe and INEOS completed their purchase of a minority stake in Manchester United, as the British billionaire acquired a 27.7 per cent stake in the Premier League club in a deal worth over $1.3bn. On Wednesday, Ratcliffe spoke to the written media for the first time about his decision to … Read more

Kylian Mbappe is leaving, so what next for Paris Saint-Germain?

Maybe this was a glimpse of the future. On Saturday night, Paris Saint-Germain took on Nantes without Kylian Mbappe in their starting XI. After playing 90 minutes against visitors Real Sociedad in the Champions League in midweek, and then privately revealing his intention to leave PSG at the end of the season, Mbappe was dropped … Read more

‘His legs have gone’: Unpicking the four words no footballer wants to hear

The Athletic

Last season, it was a Brazilian midfielder at Liverpool. This season, it’s been his international team-mate at Manchester United. “I think Casemiro’s legs have gone,” Jamie Carragher told the Covering Liverpool podcast in October. “I noticed it last season at Anfield and I didn’t like what I saw. It took me back to watching Fabinho … Read more

World Cup 2026: How do I get a ticket? Are tickets for sale? How much do tickets cost?

The next World Cup will be jointly hosted by the U.S., Canada and Mexico and will take place from June 11 to July 19, 2026. It will be the first tournament to include 48 teams, expanded from the previous number of 32, meaning there will be more games than ever — 104 in total. The … Read more

Kylian Mbappe is leaving PSG: Thank god that’s finally over

Ice ages haven’t lasted as long as this. Kylian Mbappe to Real Madrid… it has been a thing for about a decade at least. The Athletic was not even in existence when the pair began courting each other. Twitter was still fun (and called Twitter), Taylor Swift hadn’t heard of American football and the closest … Read more