SportsNet - June 2013
The last time these two teams met was back in 2009 in a World Cup qualifier. The result? A one-sided 4-0 smackdown by Brazil. This rivalry is full of history and fierce passion and on Wednesday, South American pride is on the line in what is sure to be a physical affair. Let's take a closer look at where some of the value might lie.
For Brazil, Paulinho is set to return in the midfield after taking some time to rest up and heal his ankle injury. David Luiz suffered a broken nose against Mexico and a bruised leg vs Italy, but he's fit and ready to play.
Uruguay get their captain, Diego Lugano, back after a one game suspension. Defender Andres Scotti is not as lucky as he will serve his own suspension after getting sent off vs Tahiti.
Neymar, Neymar, Neymar?
Neymar entered this tournament with a lot of expectations, but he also came with a bit of baggage as there are many Brazilian fans who aren't enamoured with his attitude. Does three goals in three games on home soil change that perception?
If reports are to be believed, the Chicago Bulls are actively pursuing a trade involving their All-Star Small Forward Luol Deng, a deal that could possibly be concluded before Thursday's NBA Draft. Sources suggest the Cleveland Cavaliers and Washington Wizards are putting together packages involving the number one and three picks respectively. With no obvious quality atop the draft this year, this would be a small price to pay for a player of Deng's ability.
The former Duke Blue Devil has long been one of the most underrated players in the league. An efficient scorer who has evolved into one of the better perimeter defenders in the NBA, swingmen like Deng are hard to find. This makes the decision by the Bulls to explore possible trade possibilities an extremely strange one.
According to SportsDirectNews, Manchester United are in "advanced negotiations" with Benfica for the transfer of center-back Ezequiel Garay.
The Red Devils are expected to complete the signing of the Argentine, for a reported sum of £17million, in the next couple of days, although Garay's former club Real Madrid will pocket half of the fee.
Rio Ferdinand might have signed a contract extension, but he is entering the twilight days of his career, while Nemanja Vidic has struggled with fitness issues over the past two seasons.
This still leaves David Moyes with plenty of options in the form Jonny Evans, Phil Jones and Chris Smalling, but the Scot is adamant to purchase an experienced and proven defender.
Garay has reignited his career at Benfica after a torrid time with Real Madrid. He might lack in the pace department, but his positional awareness tends to make up for this deficit, while his tackling attributes are also impressive. Garay is comfortable in possession and can calmly build up attacks from the deep.
Spain entered the Confederations Cup as the favorites to win the tournament. Despite facing a difficult rival in the semifinals, the Spaniards still have every reason to believe that they can take down Italy. Here are a few of those reasons.
Xabi Alonso is out injured and Pique might not be able to start in the match due to his injury against Nigeria. Here’s the advantage that Spain has. They don’t depend on a striker. Each and every player is able to score a goal. We found that out with Jordi Alba against Nigeria with his duo of goals.
Thursday June 25, 2013, all eyes will be watching the NBA Draft as it takes place live at the Brooklyn Nets Barclays Center Arena. This year's draft is not be as strong as the previous ones, so most of us will only watch the first 10 picks (let's face it, after No.10 the rest of the draft will almost be as boring as sitting at the dentist waiting to get your teeth cleaned). Leading up to Thursday's draft there are a lot of speculations about who goes where. The reality of it is this, most NBA team execs have a lot of work to do—there are rosters to be filled, and the pageantry of picking the right pieces by keeping their current picks, or trading up or down to get the player(s) they desperately need to complete their rosters worth of making the NBA playoffs are at stake.
Since only the Top 10 picks in this year's NBA draft will be relevant, allow me to indulge you with my Top 10 predictions:
1. Cleveland. Alex Len, C, Maryland.