Jill Ellis: The shy girl from England who became US Soccer’s record-breaking head coach

Lyon, France (CNN)A few hours before Sunday’s Women’s World Cup final, John Ellis will seat himself at his organ and play “You’ll Never Walk Alone,” Liverpool Football Club’s stirring anthem. A Royal Marine commando who became a football coach, the 80-year-old is no vocalist, but nevertheless he will warmly sing the words and glance at a framed photograph of his daughter, Jill. It is a ritual the Englishman goes through every time the United States plays. “That song says it all,” he tells CNN Sport over the phone from his Florida retirement home.

England awaits either USWNT or France in semifinals after Lionesses beat Norway

(CNN)England scored the fastest goal of this year’s Women’s World Cup as it beat Norway 3-0 to progress into the last four of the tournament. “We’re going to go to Lyon, the atmosphere and the occasion will be incredible. My players have proven tonight, the bigger the occasion, they better they are.” Visit CNN Sport for more news, features and videos READ: Fighting for equality one world record at a time READ: Megan Rapinoe says she’s ‘not going to the f*****g White House’ White on fire On a warm evening in La Havre and with former men’s captain David Beckham watching on from the stands, it took England just two minutes and six seconds to race into the lead against …

Inter keen to sign Romelu Lukaku but need to sell Mauro Icardi first

Inter would like to sign the Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku this summer but would have to offload Mauro Icardi first Internazionale would like to sign the Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku this summer but would have to offload Mauro Icardi first to have any chance of financing the deal. Icardi is desperate to leave Inter and the new manager, Antonio Conte, would be happy to see the Argentinian depart but there are not that many suitors that would contemplate paying the 60m price tag the club have put on him. Juventus are currently the only club looking at possibly signing Icardi, who was stripped of the Inter captaincy last season. Should Icardi leave, Inter would put all that money …

Vatican cancels football match with Vienna over anti-abortion protests

Rome (CNN)The Vatican canceled a friendly football match between its new women’s team and a club in Vienna, after a number of Austrian players protested against the Catholic Church’s stance on abortion. “During the Vatican’s anthem, some Austrian women raised their shirts, displaying writing on their stomachs and backs in favor of abortion, then sending pro-LGBT messages in opposition to the church’s stance,” the agency said. It added that politically charged banners were displayed in the stands. The news agency described the team’s welcome as “truly unexpected,” and noted that they decided to abandon the game “with great sadness.” “The protest caught the Vatican players by surprise, who were expecting a simple sporting event, and together with their manager, took …

Scotland crash out of Womens World Cup after dramatic Argentina comeback

Scotland drew 3-3 with Argentina and have crashed out of the Womens World Cup despite having a three-goal lead in the second half Scotland crashed out of the World Cup in dramatic style after throwing away a three-goal lead against Argentina. They looked to be cruising to victory until a five-minute capitulation saw Milagros Menndez score and goalkeeper Lee Alexander deflect the ball into her own net to put Shelley Kerrs side on the brink of disaster. In added time Florencia Bonsegundo pushed Scotland over the edge from the spot. Alexander thought she had saved Scotland with a fine stop but the penalty was ordered to be retaken after intervention by the VAR. Bonsegundo made sure with her second effort …

The knockout stages of a World Cup are a whole different kind of pressure | Hope Solo

Everything goes up a few more notches in the knockout stages, where a potential quarter-final between France and the US could be one of the most epic matches in the history of womens football As a player, I loved the pressure of the big time moments that occur during the World Cups knockout rounds. You feel more butterflies, a bit more stress and a little bit more excitement. Training sessions are more intense. Everything goes up a few more notches. You think you have given it your all during the group-stage games but then you learn that theres another level to reach for in the knockout stages. You know that if you lose, you go home. The intensity goes up …

Wendie Renards twice-taken penalty pushes France past Nigeria

France completed a perfect three wins from three in Group A with a 1-0 victory over Nigeria thanks to a re-taken penalty by Wendie Renard A furious Nigeria manager, Thomas Dennerby, claimed the officials had ruined the match after Wendie Renards retaken penalty following a double VAR check ensured France progress to the last 16 having topped Group A. Nigerias hopes of a third-place finish now hang by a thread. If I gave you honest opinions, they would probably send me home, he said, bluntly. When asked about his teams performance, he replied: My players are heroes. The France manager, Corinne Diacre, was pleased to benefit from the referee following the letter of the law. There are new rules so …

Premier League fixtures 2019-20: Manchester United host Chelsea on opening weekend

Manchester United have an eye-catching opener to the Premier league season at home to Chelsea while Manchester City will start the defence of their title at West Ham Liverpool will raise the curtain on the Premier League season when they host promoted Norwich on the evening of Friday 9 August and if the release of the fixture list on Thursday felt early as it always does it has nonetheless generated the usual scrutiny and excitement. It was only 12 days ago that Liverpool were finishing what can now be called last season with Premier League (@premierleague) Original Article : HERE ; The Ultimate Survival Food: The Lost Ways

If you’re not nervous at a World Cup, you don’t care enough to win | Hope Solo

The pressure of a major tournament can be difficult to deal with and not a lot of players have the ability to deal with that day in and day out Before every World Cup game I played in, I felt good during the warm up. I was ready to play and wanted to play. But then we have to go to the locker room and wait for 20 minutes to come back out. Thats when the nerves start to build up. You walk out the tunnel. You line up for the national anthems. The camera is in your face. You become part of the pomp and circumstance and then the nerves start to kick in. Really kick in. You can …

Crystal Dunn: ‘As a black woman I always felt I had to go above and beyond to be noticed’

Four years after watching her USA team-mates hoist the World Cup from a sports bar, the dynamic 26-year-old left back is out to win one for herself while busting stereotypes about black footballers Crystal Dunn talks a lot about what she calls the above and beyond stuff. Whether its stepping in to play whatever position is required on the day, offering her trademark levity to the sometimes high-strung atmosphere of training with the world champions or challenging stereotypes about black players in a sport disproportionately played in America shock quarter-final exit to Sweden at the Olympics. Im a different person and a player than I was four years ago, Dunn says. I was always been known as a diverse player …

France storms to win in Women’s World Cup opener against South Korea

(CNN)A good host should be confident and entertaining but must not completely dominate proceedings. France took notice of two of those three nuggets of advice at least, as the home nation ensured a copybook start to its Women’s World Cup campaign with a commanding performance against South Korea. Follow @cnnsport The build-up has been intense. But after the pageantry of the opening ceremony and the passionate rendition of the national anthem, and despite the presence of the country’s president, there were no visible sign of nerves from the home team. READ: How Bob Marley’s daughter saved women’s football in Jamaica In a cafe in the shadows of the stadium, the flags of the nations competing in a tournament described as …

The 10,000-hour rule for sporting success is largely a myth, so let kids dabble | Sean Ingle

A new book blows out of the water the theory that the key to sporting success is relentless practice and total focus from an early age This column comes from the sleepy Austrian town of Gtzis, where Katarina Johnson-Thompson a 2014 study comparing the development of 52 top German footballers, including 18 national team players, with 50 who played in the fourth to sixth divisions found that emphatically was not the case. A German study comparing international women players with those who just played in the Bundesliga found a similar story. Those who represented the national team played fewer games up to 18 and did more peer-led football and coach-led practice in other sports compared to their Bundesliga counterparts. There …

Womens World Cup ticket fiasco shows Fifas capacity for chaos

Organisers reaction when it emerged some tickets booked together are not next to one another left a lot to be desired Following the still simmering fury over League final and its corporate-heavy ticket policy for both its showpiece mens competitions, Fifa has given us an outstanding proverbial hold my beer moment. Just 18 days before hosts France open the Womens World Cup against South Korea at Parc des Princes a number of fans have found that are not next to one another. Families and friends heading to the tournament face being split up. Its hard to understand how this happened. Fifa has been taking payments for tickets since the first packages were made available in October. It has raked in …

Aston Villa beat West Brom on penalties to reach Championship play-off final

Aston Villa lost 1-0 to West Brom at the Hawthorns but progressed to the Championship play-off final 4-3 on penalties after the semi-final finished 2-2 on aggregate Aston Villa have a shot at redemption. Twelve months on from their play-off final triumphing on penalties. Tammy Abraham converted the winning kick, after Jed Steer had saved two penalties at the start of the shootout, to spark wild celebrations among the Villa supporters. The visitors made hard work of it, failing to break down an Albion side who were forced to play for 40 minutes with 10 men, including all of extra time, after Chris Brunt was sent off for two bookable offences. Both fouls were committed on John McGinn the pair …

I thought the main issue in women’s sports was equal pay. I was wrong

We are told female athletes are paid less than men because they generate less money. But that will always be the case if womens sports arent marketed properly In womens sports we talk a lot about equal pay. The focus of the conversation is usually on how women make less than men, the unfairness of the disparity despite the equal amount of work they put in, and how female athletes often have to work full-time jobs on top of being full-time athletes. The US womens soccer team has brought the conversation to the forefront over the last three years. After they won the World Cup in 2015, it was revealed that the US womens team and in turn received a …

Lucas Moura: from So Paulo prodigy and PSG outcast to Tottenham hero | David Hytner

The Brazilian took time to settle at Spurs and may not have faced Ajax but for injuries yet his hat-trick showed his talent Lucas Moura put the earphones in and looked down at the iPad screen, the peak of his dark NYC cap obscuring his eyes. It was late on Wednesday night and the Tottenham forward, whose sensational second-half hat-trick had set up a final against Liverpool on 1 June the first time that the club have reached the showpiece. The commentary built to its classically Brazilian climax and when the man behind the microphone boomed out Mouras name, the man himself lifted his head and chuckled. Photograph: Sergio Perez/X00213 Was this helpful? Thank you for your feedback. The affection …