TIME viral

Watch Soccer Megastar Cristiano Ronaldo Stand Up for the Little Guy

Haters are going to struggle after watching this

It is true, multimillionaire footballer Cristiano Ronaldo just rubs some people the wrong way, but this video of the Real Madrid superstar defending a young Japanese boy attempting to speak Portuguese demonstrates his kinder side.

The video emerged Monday from a promotional event in Japan last year. In it, the boy opens with some basic greetings but begins to stumble over more complicated sentences.

When the audience laughs, Ronaldo, referring to the crowd, asks his translator off camera, “”Why they smile? Why? He speaks good Portuguese. Very good. They should be happy because he tries very hard.”

The audience was shamed into a bashful applause and Ronaldo earned some serious respect.

TIME Soccer

Watch Lionel Messi Take Cristiano Ronaldo’s Champions League Goals Record

Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates his first goal against Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League Semi Final First Leg at The Nou Camp in Barcelona on May 5, 2015.
Gustau Nacarino—Reuters Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates his first goal against Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League Semi Final First Leg at The Nou Camp in Barcelona on May 5, 2015.

With these two stunners in Wednesday's match

Barcelona forward Lionel Messi scored a pair of goals in Wednesday’s Champions League semifinal match against Bayern Munich that didn’t just secure the win, but and put him ahead of another soccer legend for the most goals scored in the competition.

It was on Tuesday that Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid took the record, Sports Illustrated reports, with his 76th goal coming in a game against Juventus. But Messi came roaring back Wednesday with two beauties, pushing his total to 77.

Both players will have at least one more chance to this competition to boost their numbers. Bayern and Barcelona will go head to head next Tuesday, while Real Madrid and Juventus will play the following day. The Champions League final takes place in Berlin on June 6.

TIME Soccer

Morris Scores in 1st U.S. Start in 2-0 Win Over Mexico

Jordan Morris
Mo Khursheed—AP U.S. forward Jordan Morris plays an international friendly at the Alamodome in San Antonio on April 15, 2015

Remember, this kid is still in college

(SAN ANTONIO) — Jordan Morris made a loud statement in his first start for the U.S. national team against his country’s biggest and most bitter rival.

His reward? A game pennant given to him by veteran Michael Bradley to hang in his room at college.

The 20-year-old Stanford sophomore scored his first international goal early in the second half, Juan Agudelo added his first international goal in four years, and the Americans dispatched Mexico by their traditional 2-0 score in an exhibition game Wednesday night.

“I was nervous but I was excited,” Morris said. “It’s something I’ve dreamed of since I was a little kid, scoring a goal, especially in such a big game in front of so many fans.”

Morris, thought to be the first collegian to start for the U.S. in at least two decades, scored in the 49th minute after Bradley brought the ball upfield and passed to Gyasi Zardes. The return pass ricocheted off defender Mario Osuna and was picked up by Morris at the top of the penalty area. He took a touch, broke in and slid the ball between the legs of goalkeeper Cirilo Saucedo from 10 yards.

“It just kind of popped out,” Morris said. “I’m happy that when I got the chance, I got to the ball and put it away.”

Agudelo replaced Morris in the 65th and scored seven minutes later. Bradley made a long pass from the midfield line and Agudelo controlled it just outside the penalty area. He cut inside with half a dozen touches and beat Saucedo to the near post with a low shot from 19 yards.

It was the third international goal for Agudelo and first since March 2011. Playing his second international match since November 2012 and his first since March last year, he dropped to his knees and was mobbed by a group of teammates.

Before a sellout crowd of 64,369, U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann improved to 3-0-3 against his team’s regional rival.

The U.S. has defeated Mexico by “dos a cero” in four straight home World Cup qualifiers, all in Columbus, Ohio. The U.S. is 13-5-5 against Mexico since 2000, including a win in the second round of the 2002 World Cup.

With the game not on a FIFA international date, both teams were missing top players. And with the U.S. looking ahead to this summer’s CONCACAF Gold Cup, Klinsmann mixed a roster of veterans and young players.

Morris, who trained with the national team last May and made his debut at Ireland in November, started because captain Clint Dempsey is sidelined by a hamstring injury and Jozy Altidore was serving a one-game suspension for a red card.

“You say, ‘Why not give him a chance?'” Klinsmann said. “He trained very well. We see his improvement.”

Klinsmann also saw some nerves in the youngster.

“When Jordan was doing his shooting before the game, he was pretty much missing everything. I told him, ‘Just relax. It’s OK,'” Klinsmann said. “To see a boy like Morris score his first international goal, you jump for joy.”

Klinsmann also gave defender Ventura Alvarado his first start and started center back Omar Gonzalez for the first time since last summer’s World Cup.

Kyle Beckerman, who was deep in a midfield diamond, limped off midway through the second half with a bruised left thigh.

Morris narrowly missed a chance in the first half when a cross barely sailed over his head for what would have been a point-blank chance at goal.

The Americans avoided their tendency to give up late goals. The U.S. had allowed 13 goals from the 80th minute on in their previous 13 games.

Mexico’s best chance came late in the first half when Eduardo Herrera ran into the penalty area and poked a low cross past goalkeeper Nick Rimando into the side netting. El Tri had complained about the field conditions on Tuesday and by game time the grass was uneven, with large brown and dirt patches causing players to slip and stumble several times.

“I think they had better luck with the ball, but they weren’t that much better,” Mexico coach Miguel Herrera said. “Their opportunities were really mistakes on our part, slipping on the field because we didn’t have the right cleats.”

 

TIME Soccer

Watch a Barcelona Player Kick a Soccer Ball Into a Basketball Hoop From Far Away

He's no Messi, but Martin Montoya nailed this long shot

​Sure, Lionel Messi is the star of Barcelona, but could he do this?

The club posted this video of reserve right back Martin Montoya draining a long-distance shot with his foot. Montoya gets nothing but net from what looks like further away than the length of basketball court.

Zlaaatan.com finds the only stuff on the internet that matters​

Montoya’s teammates are amazed and he celebrated by pulling up his shorts to reveal the leg with the special touch.

This article originally appeared on SI.com

TIME Soccer

Watch Cristiano Ronaldo Score 5 Goals in 1 Game

Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates his fifth goal against Granada during their Spanish first division soccer match at Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid
Juan Medina—Reuters Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates his fifth goal against Granada during their Spanish first division soccer match at Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid on April 5, 2015.

Win against Granada marks the Real Madrid forward's first five-goal game

Every time Lionel Messi does something ethereal to try and cement his place as world football’s No. 1, Cristiano Ronaldo inevitably fires back. On Sunday vs. Granada, he answered … five times.

The Real Madrid forward scored his first career five-goal game in a 9-1 rout of hapless Granada and pushed his La Liga tally to 36, four ahead of Messi. Sunday marked the 24th career league hat trick for Ronaldo, which ties the mark Messi set earlier this season.

In addition to Ronaldo’s contributions, Real received two goals from Karim Benzema, one from Gareth Bale and one on an own goal by Diego Mainz. Granada’s single tally came from Robert Ibanez in the 74th minute.

The 9-1 scoreline was Real Madrid’s largest margin of victory since 1967, as well as Granada’s largest ever La Liga defeat. The last Real player to score five goals in one game was Fernando Morientes in 2002.

This article originally appeared on SI.com

TIME Innovation

Five Best Ideas of the Day: March 26

The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, D.C.

1. Al Qaeda and ISIS are locked in an ideological war, and for once, it’s good to be their mutual enemy.

By Daniel Byman and Jennifer Williams in Lawfare

2. For the millions left behind by America’s new economy, disability claims — legitimate or otherwise — are skyrocketing.

By Chana Joffe-Walt in Planet Money by National Public Radio

3. Maybe universities shouldn’t measure prestige by the number of applicants they turn away.

By Jon Marcus in the Hechinger Report

4. When younger women have heart attacks, they’re twice as likely to die as their male counterparts. Is medicine’s gender bias to blame?

By Maya Dusenbery in Pacific Standard

5. Can the triumph and tragedy of soccer help Harvard students appreciate the humanities?

By Colleen Walsh in the Harvard Gazette

The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, D.C.

TIME Ideas hosts the world's leading voices, providing commentary and expertise on the most compelling events in news, society, and culture. We welcome outside contributions. To submit a piece, email ideas@time.com.

TIME Soccer

Winter World Cup Coming to Qatar in 2022

The Chalifa International Stadium (pictured during preparations for 2022 FIFA World Cup) in sporting complex Aspire Zone in Doha, Qatar on Jan. 20, 2015.
Havlik Petr—AP The Chalifa International Stadium (pictured during preparations for 2022 FIFA World Cup) in sporting complex Aspire Zone in Doha, Qatar on Jan. 20, 2015.

The final match of the tournament is scheduled for Dec. 18

The FIFA executive committee confirmed the 2022 World Cup in Qatar will be played in November and December with a Dec. 18 final.

FIFA also announced that it has agreed in principle to hold the tournament during a reduced 28-day window.

Last month, FIFA recommended the tournament be played later in the year because of the extreme heat during the summer months in Qatar.

FIFA has been criticized for rescheduling the tournament into the middle of the club season. In February, FIFA announced that it will not compensate European clubs that have their seasons disrupted by players participating in the World Cup.

FIFA president Sepp Blatter previously said he wanted the final to be played no later than Dec. 18 as the championship game is traditionally held on a Sunday.

This article originally appeared on SI.com.

TIME Cuba

New York Soccer Team Set for Historic Match in Cuba

2015 Lunar New Year Cup - South China v New York Cosmos
Victor Fraile—Getty Images Walter Restrepo, left, of New York Cosmos and Ting Fung Chak of South China in action during the 2015 Lunar New Year Cup match between South China and the New York Cosmos at Hong Kong Stadium on Feb. 19, 2015 in Hong Kong. The New York Cosmos will play the Cuban National team in Havana this summer.

It'll take place on June 2 in Havana

The New York Cosmos will go up against Cuba’s national squad in Havana this summer, according to a new report, marking the first time in decades that a professional U.S. team will play on the island.

News of the soccer match was errantly announced early, according to the New York Times, which reports the game will take place June 2 during a lull in the Cosmos’ schedule. The Cuban national team will use the game to prepare for July’s Concacaf Gold Cup.

Baseball remains the island nation’s top sport, but soccer has been growing in popularity. Although the Cosmos is a second-tier team in the states, some of its international players like Raul and Marcos Senna, former stars of Spain’s World Cup team, are recognizable in Cuba.

The U.S. announced in December that it would thaw and restore full diplomatic ties with Cuba after more than half a century.

[NYT]

TIME Soccer

FIFA Steps Closer to Delaying Qatar’s 2022 World Cup Until Winter

FBL-WC-2022-ETHICS-QATAR
AFP/Getty Images A general view taken on November 13, 2014 shows Khalifa Stadium in Doha which is undergoing complete renovation in preparation to host some of the matches for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

FIFA task force recommends playing tournament in November and December to avoid overwhelming heat

A FIFA task force has recommended delaying the 2022 World Cup tournament in Qatar until winter, rather than risk exposing players and fans to a summer climate where temperatures can exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit.

FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce hailed the recommendation as a “common sense” solution, which the executive committee will likely adopt when the committee convenes in Zurich on March 19 and 20, BBC News reports.

Boyce also acknowledged concerns from football leagues that a winter game would disrupt other longstanding tournament schedules. The 2023 African Cup, for instance, would most likely be pushed back by a winter World Cup.

“It is eight years away and people should have enough time to make it work,” Boyce said.

Read more at BBC News.

TIME Soccer

Soccer Team Takes Viagra Before a Match, Loses Anyway

San Jose v River Plate - Copa Bridgestone Libertadores 2015
Javier Mamani/STR—LatinContent/Getty Images Rodrigo Mora of River (L) and Arnaldo Vera of San Jose (R) run for the ball during a match between San Jose and River Plate as part of group stage Copa Bridgestone Libertadores 2015 at Jesus Bermudez Stadium on February 19, 2015 in Oruro, Bolivia.

They met stiff resistance

An Argentine soccer team tried to get ahead by taking Viagra for a match at high altitude. Unfortunately, they lost 2-0 anyway.

Club Atletico River Plate decided to take a cocktail of Sildenafil (commercially known as Viagra), caffeine and aspirin in advance of a match in Bolivia, the Washington Post reports. Research has shown that the anti-impotence drug helps boost circulation and deliver more oxygen to the muscles, allowing athletes to perform better at high altitudes.

River Plate hails from Buenos Aires, where the elevation (about 82 feet) is fairly low, while their match against San Jose de Oruro in Bolivia took place at 12,400 feet. Still, even Viagra was not enough to help them, and they lost their first group game of the Copa Libertadores de America.

“The players finished very tired and angry, because they know they played a great match,” coach Marcello Gallardo said, according to the club’s website. “[The team’s center back] Pezzella is still sore.”

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