2014 World Cup
The United Press International says “fear and loathing” are looming over the road to the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
“Hosting the World Cup was supposed to be a source of national pride in this soccer-crazed South American country,” Miami Herald writers Mimi Whitefield and Taylor Barnes say about Brazil. However as the date for the opening match approaches, Whitefield and Barnes say preparations in Brazil have “fallen behind on many fronts.”
Telegraph contributing writer Allen Chahad asks, “Where have all the Brazilian strikers gone?”
The Times of India reports that Sony Six has secured “exclusive broadcast rights for major international football tournaments” including the 2014 FIFA World Cup and U-17 World Cup.
Ad Age says Coca-Cola is continuing its history of “special-edition bottles capitalizing on big events.” The company has released a line of “18 interactive mini-bottles” in Brazil to commemorate the World Cup.
This week, FIFA released its list of match referees for Brazil 2014. Telegraph writer Henry Winter says Howard Webb could officiate the opening match of the World Cup this summer.
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho tells The Guardian’s Paul Wilson that “this season’s Premier League is completely different to the one he knew before he left England in 2007.” Mourinho predicts Manchester City will be Chelsea’s “biggest title rival,” and he is also wary of Arsenal’s “new-found grit.”
ESPN FC writer Mark Worrall says Mourinho will be the “the master of his own destiny” in 2014.
FIFA Ballon d’Or Gala
Guardian writer Marina Hyde says while FIFA may have released the “full breakdown of votes cast in Cristiano Ronaldo’s anointment,” the workings of its more important ballots remain a subject of the “utmost secrecy.”
Belfast Telegraph writer Simon Rice says Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo and Barcelona’s Lionel Messi were “desperate to win” the FIFA Ballon d’Or prize. Rice also discusses “10 things learned” from voting during the FIFA Ballon d’Or Gala.
In Other News
ESPN FC writer John Cross says Per Mertesacker is “a legend in the making.”
Compiled by INSIDER’s Nicole Bennett
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