Vanity Fair loves sexy footballers

In sexy men news, Cristiano Ronaldo and Didier Drogba are mostly naked on the June cover of Vanity Fair.  Shot by Annie Liebovitz, the soccer stars were photographed in different locations.

It appears, however, that Cristiano Ronaldo is not happy to be sharing underwear time with his rival.

It’s been rumoured that Ronaldo wants to sue Vanity Fair for using his image to promote it’s June issue.

Ronaldo, 25, became the highest-paid soccer player in the world last June when Real Madrid bought him from Manchester United for a record-breaking $130 million.

Ronaldo’s Portugal and Drogba’s Ivory Coast face each other in their World Cup openers on June 15th.

Both are part of Group G, which is considered the tournament’s Group of Death, which means tha at least one quality team won’t move on past the group stage.  Group G includes three of the world’s best teams: Brazil, Portugal, and Ivory Coast, as well as the super secretive North Korea.

The article inside is just as good, with pictures of Cameroon’s Samuel Eto’o, Ghana’s Sulley Muntari, the U.S.A.’s Landon Donovan, Brazil’s Kaká and Pato, Italy’s Gianluigi Buffon, Serbia’s Dejan Stankovic, England’s Carlton Cole, and Germany’s Michael Ballack.

Now if only they would play the game dressed like this, I really feel more women would watch.  I know I wouldn’t look away!!



Ballack out of World Cup

Germany faces yet another possible setback just weeks before the world cup.

Ballack, the 33-year-old German captain and Chelsea midfielder, suffered injuries to ligaments in his right ankle during last week’s FA Cup Final.

“It’s very disappointing, but I have to accept it,” Ballack told German television, standing with crutches. “It’s football and you have to live with it.… I am angry, clearly.

Ballack has his ankle in a cast and won’t be able to train for at least eight weeks, effectively ruling him out of the cup.

“We are shocked, no question about it, and we are all very, very sad,” Joachim Loew, Germany’s coach,  said at the team’s training camp in Sicily. “He is a very important player for us, a world-class player who played a very important role in decisive games for us.”

This would have been Ballack’s last chance at the cup.  He previously made the 2002 final and the 2006 semi-final.


German woes

German coach Joachim Loew is another coach facing the possiblity of having to pick a team that holds none of his star players.

Loew’s first-choice goalkeeper, Rene Adler, may be out for the rest of the season. The 25-year-old goalkeeper from Bayer Leverkusen broke his rib in training.  It’s unclear if he’ll be fit and ready for the tournament.

At the same time, Bayer Leverkusen midfielder Simon Rolfes, 28, feels his World Cup dream is fading. Rolfes had a procedure to remove cartilage from his knee, and has been off the field since January.

“Most likely, the World Cup is out of my reach,” he said.

“I have not given up hope and I am in contact with Joachim Loew but I don’t think I will be there, which is a pity.”

To top off the injuries, 33-year old Chelsea midfielder and German captain, Michael Ballack, has a reccuring problem that has seen his field time cut down considerably.  He has an injury to his Achilles tendon, which he has previously had surgery on.

Loew will announce his team May 6th.


Groups and match schedules

So as I’ve mentioned before, the groups stage is the first part of the World Cup competition. Teams are divided into eight groups of four teams each, and two teams from each group go on to the knockout stage.

Now, there is a method to how they pick the teams for each group, but I’m seriously lost on it. No matter where I read it, it just seems to not make sense.

Here’s what Wikipedia says about it: “Eight teams are seeded, including the hosts, with the other seeded teams selected using a formula based on the FIFA World Rankings and/or performances in recent World Cups, and drawn to separate groups. The other teams are assigned to different “pots”, usually based on geographical criteria, and teams in each pot are drawn at random to the eight groups. Since 1998, constraints have been applied to the draw to ensure that no group contains more than two European teams or more than one team from any other confederation.”

If that helps you, congratulations. You are officially smarter than me.

Anyways, I’m just gonna give you the list of groups. Each one links back the the FIFA profile on that country. Feel free to check them out.

Group A:  South Africa, Mexico, Uruguay, France

Group B: Argentina, Nigeria, Korea Republic (South Korea), Greece

Group C: England, USA, Algeria, Slovenia

Group D: Germany, Australia, Serbia, Ghana

Group E: Netherlands, Denmark, Japan, Cameroon

Group F: Italy, Paraguay, New Zealand, Slovakia

Group G: Brazil, Korea DPR (North Korea), Côte d’Ivoire, Portugal

Group H: Spain, Switzerland, Honduras, Chile

Th matches start June 11, and will run for a month.  A list of matches can be found here on the FIFA website.