SportsNet - September 2012

La Liga: Just Five More Years

on September 22 2012 12:49 PM

Spanish football is at stake and it will "kill itself" within five years, according to Jose Maria Gay de Liebana, Spain's most prominent football economist.

An economics professor at the Universidad de Barcelona, expressed his concern over the world’s one of the most famed soccer league during his fifth annual presentation on financial issues facing Spanish and European football.

One of the most well-respected professor stated that revenues aren't rising fast enough to match high costs and La Liga's television deals are poorly structured.

He also said that too much importance is placed on attracting Chinese fans and suggests the radical change of forming an Iberian league with Portugal's three biggest clubs

"If things go on like this, Spanish football will kill itself," he said.

"A year ago I predicted that La Liga had only ten seasons left, now I see that five more would be a lot.

"The Spanish league is not growing, there are only two teams, which are growing: Barcelona and Real Madrid.

Maradona: 4th Time Father

on September 22 2012 11:34 AM

A good news in true sense for Diego Maradona.

It is not that the Argentinian football legend got a call to manage his state team again. Not even some Dubai based club assigned him for the second time, but Maradona is set to become a father again for the fourth time.

His partner Veronica Ojeda revealed this on Friday that the pregnancy reports are true."I'm four months pregnant," Ojeda, 34, told

The couple are thought to have been trying for another baby since Veronica miscarried in January 2010.

The 51-year-old Maradona has two daughters - Dalma, 25, and Giannina, 23 - with ex-wife Claudia Villafane, and a 26-year-old son, Diego Jnr, born following an affair with Italian Claudia Sinagra during his tenure at Napoli.

The youngest, Giannina, is married to Man City star Sergio Aguero and made Maradona a granddad in February 2009 by giving birth to son Benjamin in Madrid.

Why Chicago Cubs Should Be Aggressive In Trying to Trade Alfonso Soriano

on September 22 2012 8:49 AM


As the Chicago Cubs’ 2012 season limps to a close, players such as Starlin Castro and Anthony Rizzo have given fans good reason to look forward to the team’s future. If Theo Epstein and the rest of the front office want to maximize that future potential, though, they’ll make every effort to have Alfonso Soriano off the roster by Opening Day 2013.

As ESPN notes, the once-untradeable outfielder is finally far enough along in his exorbitant contract that the Cubs could pick up enough money to convince another team to acquire him. The network speculates that the Rays, Indians, Orioles and Athletics might all have an interest in adding Soriano if the price were right.

Obviously, if the Cubs do absorb a large chunk of Soriano’s contract, there won’t be much financial gain from shipping him out. However, his departure would free up a full-time spot in the outfield that could be used to develop a younger player—or more than one—whose impact on the Cubs’ long-term success would be vastly greater than that of the 36-year-old Soriano.

Like Old Times? FSU-Clemson Tops Week's Matchups

on September 21 2012 7:53 PM

It was a run like few others. Fourteen straight years of double-digit wins, nine conference championships and a couple national crowns, that is what Florida State offered its faithful as it trampled over the college football landscape with their “dad gummit” coach leading the way.

With the likes of Deion Sanders, Derrick Brooks, Marvin Jones, Warrick Dunn, Peter Warrick and Heisman Trophy winners Charlie Ward and Chris Weinke at his disposal to unleash on falls Saturdays, Bobby Bowden was able to craft a winner in Tallahassee, Fla., that earned the ultimate combo throughout the country: fear and respect.

The Seminoles didn’t enjoy the rebel label that the University of Miami did; they merely posted more success, consistent success. From 1987 through 2000, they were ranked no worse than fifth in a final poll.

Since then, um, well …

The balance of power shifted, 7- or 8-win seasons became the norm when FSU wasn’t forfeiting games due to using ineligible players, and it’s now three seasons since Bowden roamed the sidelines.

A Letter To The NFL: Replacement Refs Must Go

on September 21 2012 7:14 PM

Dear Mr. Goodell and Co., Your warning to coaches and players regarding showing respect for the replacement officials is a slap in the collective face of your fans- your market. The league has intentionally allowed the quality of games to be downgraded simply to avoid paying more money to the professional officials. It is transparent that in demanding teams to “respect” (in other words avoid criticizing) the incompetent replacements, you are simply requiring respect for the league's mistake. It would seem you have all the leverage, so why should you negotiate with the legitimate officials? Replacement referees or not, people will watch the NFL. Demand for your product has become virtually inelastic. Consider this however: The NFL is more than simply a product. Each Sunday is a piece of history, every year a part of the legacy. Fans are not just consumers. They store up the memories- triumphs and defeats- and those memories become a part of who they are as fans of their teams, the league, and the sport. A year in which the league allows the integrity of the game to suffer will likely not cost you financially.