category: World Cup 2014
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FANTASYAfter the success of its Fantasy Pre-World Cup game, FanXT has launched its Fantasy World Cup (http://fantasyworldcup.fanxt.com) game to offer World Cup fans a once-in-4-years chance to build a virtual World Cup team based on real-life World Cup players such as Lionel Messi (Argentina), Neymar (Brazil), Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal) and Wayne Rooney (England). These fantasy football managers earn points based on the performances of these players that play in FIFA World Cup 2014 matches. As the world would watch in awe the action and drama behind the FIFA World Cup, football fans could take on the challenge to earn the coveted title of Legendary Fantasy World Cup Manager, something many failed to do in the previous Fantasy World Cup 2010. The game offers 12 statistics for users to score fantasy points such as Goals, Shots On Goals, Assists to score valuable points, ability to assign a captain, analyse players’ performance based on detailed graph analysis, choose their team formation (4-3-3, 4-4-2 or 5-3-2) as well as create private or mini leagues for users to compete among their friends. The socially savvy can also invite friends to join via Facebook and earn extra $0.5 million virtual budget for each friend who joined. Fantasy managers start with the rank of Rookie Manager but as they advance in the game, they could eventually earn the Legendary Manager title, something many failed to do in the previous Fantasy World Cup 2010. A World Cup Predictor game is included in the website, which challenges users to predict the outcome (including the score) of all 64 matches and predict who will lift the World Cup trophy this year. For those early bird users that joined the pre-World Cup fantasy soccer game prior to this one, each of the fantasy manager shall have their fantasy points earned to be converted to extra virtual budget in this final World Cup game. It pays to be early. Fantasy sports are enjoyed by over 83 million people globally and according to Alexa statistics, fantasy sites are 3 times more engaging than popular sites like Yahoo, CNN, ESPN and even the official FIFA World Cup site itself. This highly engaging fantasy football game for World Cup is available in Spanish (http://fantasyworldcup.fanxt.com/es), Chinese (http://fantasyworldcup.fanxt.com/cn), Indonesian (http://fantasyworldcup.fanxt.com/id) and Portuguese (http://fantasyworldcup.fanxt.com/pt) languages and playable on these platforms below. Website: http://fantasyworldcup.fanxt.com Facebook: http://apps.facebook.com/fantasyworldcup iPhone: http://itunes.apple.com/app/fantasy-world-soccer/id859769859?mt=8 Android: http://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.jmsb.fantasyworldcup   About FanXT [www.fanxt.com] [483, Green Lanes, London, N13 4BS UNITED KINGDOM] FanXT aims to be fantasy sport and digital media provider for sport leagues across the world, by managing the internet and mobile rights of the leagues via the provisioning of official websites, fantasy sport game, mobile apps, Facebook apps and even Smart TV apps. We are supported by the U.S State Department via the GIST Initiative programme. We are the Official Fantasy Football Provider for Finland’s Veikkausliiga, Hong Kong First Division Football League, India’s I-League, Philippines’ United Football League, and Singapore S.League   For any information and enquiries, please e-mail us at info@fanxt.com or visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FanXT

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category: World Cup 2014
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As excitement builds ahead of this summer’s hotly anticipated football tournament, attention has turned to the ball that will take centre stage at kick off. Tested for over two years by some of the biggest stars in the footballing world, pundits are calling it the most tested ball yet. But one legend has still to give it his seal of approval…

Following recent research* commissioned by Captain Morgan, which revealed that a third of England fans are concerned that the ball may hamper England’s chances in the tournament this year, the Captain who is famous for his mischief making, has turned his spy glass to the ball and decided to really put it through its paces.

The Captain has commissioned a cannon capable of firing an object at speeds of up to 74 miles per hour, to determine once and for all whether the ball has what it takes to deliver a legendary tournament this summer.

Captain Morgan, said: “This year’s ball has plenty of style but does it have any substance? I gathered together my crew of buccaneers and headed to the beach to discover for myself whether it deserves true legendary status as the world’s most tested football.

“We tested its speed, swerve and performance vs an old ball, as well as its controllability and of course its accuracy and I’m very pleased to announce it passed all with flying colours and has received my official seal of approval.

“I know the England team haven’t had chance to practice with the ball ahead of the tournament in Brazil but fans can rest assured that the ball is definitely up to scratch and has the makings of a true legend.”

You can watch the Captain put the ball through its paces at www.facebook.com/captainmorgan or here

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category: World Cup 2014
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The 2014 FIFA World Cup will get underway this June in Brazil and not only will it be the biggest soccer event of the year it’ll be the biggest betting event of the year.  The numbers are staggering—it’s hard to get an accurate figure on how much money will be bet on the World Cup consider that UK bookmakers are expecting to take as much £3 billion in action.  That’s just the United Kingdom meaning that the overall money bet on the World Cup is downright mind boggling.

For the intelligent bettor it’s important to keep in mind that the majority of World Cup betting action will be from casual and recreational players.  This type of player has a tendency to bet with their heart, backing their country’s team or else jump on a bandwagon and bet one of the top favorites.  Bookmakers are aware of this—in addition to moving the prices based on betting action they’ll frequently ‘shade’ lines involving teams they know will receive a lot of wagering action.  The sharp player, meanwhile, looks for ‘value’ on teams that might not be as popular with the general public.

So which teams are ‘overvalued’?  First of all, a disclaimer:  just because a team is ‘overvalued’ doesn’t mean they can’t win.  It’s also not a slight on the team itself but rather their market valuation.  ‘Value’ is a very nebulous concept but its essential to be mindful of it if you’re going to make money betting over the longterm.  The most obvious ‘overvalued’ team is the host country of Brazil.  Brazil is a very good team to be sure but they have defensive issues, questions about their midfield depth and a recent history of very erratic play.  These questions are sufficient in our view that they’re a ‘false favorite’ and are overvalued at +300.

Spain is the defending World Cup Champion but the marketplace appears to be making a big deal about their loss to Brazil in the Confederations Cup.  This is a mistake in our view—despite the fact that Brazil won that matchup 3-0 its unwise to conclude that Spain is ‘down’ from their 2010 team.  Some have expressed concern that they may be ‘over the hill’ but it’s hard to pass up a proven commodity like Spain who are also the #1 ranked national team in the world at the moment.  They look like a nice value at +685.  Germany is also attractive at +640—some concern in both cases about European teams having historically struggled in World Cup play in South America.  Then again, the conventional wisdom that European teams can’t win in South America could be giving us value.

Italy is also worth at least a speculative play at +2850.  The rap on Italy is that they’ve been insanely erratic in World Cup play—they won the tournament in 2006 and then didn’t win a game in 2010—but they’ve got a deep, talented and experienced team.  Most of their roster is from AC Milan and Juventus in Italy’s Serie A league meaning there will be good cohesion.  At such a high price they’re worth a shot.

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Football has long remained a global sport which has the unique power of uniting millions of people from across the world in their passion for the beautiful game. Matches are televised on a worldwide scale through multi-million pound broadcasting deals which allow live football to be beamed across every continent. Football’s appeal is predominately based upon the level of drama, tension and excitement that created on the pitch which keeps fans on the edge of their seat.

Although domestic league competition provides each country with their own unique identity and passionate supporters, major European competitions and international tournaments provide the greatest attraction for football fans. The UEFA Champions League and World Cup are archetypal examples of tournaments which attract the highest viewing figures in world sport thanks to the high calibre of football on show from the very best players. Such prestigious tournaments were made possible through the efforts of governing bodies to create events that would shape the future of football, in addition to the growing income generated through sponsorship deals.

 

Business in the sport

Football’s ever-increasing rise to prominence has culminated in the growing rate of sponsorship deals through companies who realise the vast business potential within the sport. A recently agreed deal between Coral and Chelsea illustrates a trend within football which is quickly developing into a multi-billion pound industry where business is equally as important as the game itself. Money has become an integral factor in numerous facets of the game, with football clubs searching for new methods of income to remain stable and finance improvements on and off the pitch to become more established. Sponsorship deals reflect an interdependent relationship between external companies and football clubs; companies need football clubs to promote their brand on a global scale through merchandise, football shirts and advertising boards, while football clubs need companies to generate sufficient income for economic solidity and potential growth. Football clubs also benefit from the wealth of customers who are brand loyal to a particular company, as special promotions and marketing strategies can help to create a global fanbase for a club to thrive upon.

 

Manchester United

Despite their current on-the-field struggles, Manchester United remain one of the wealthiest clubs in world football thanks to multi-million income generated through global investments and sponsorship deals. Not only are Manchester United amongst an elite group of clubs who have their training and playing kit designed and manufactured by Nike, but the club’s brand continuously draws multi-million pound deals with companies who wish to be associated with a prestigious football team. Following on from their deal to become the global shirt sponsor and principle partner of Manchester United in 2010, multinational corporation AON agreed an eight year deal worth £160 million to put their name on the club’s training ground. The deal came into action in July 2013 as the infamous Carrington became the AON Training Complex, with every player and coaching staff wearing training kit that includes the AON logo. Part of the deal also includes AON sponsoring annual summer tours and friendly matches to increase brand awareness as a commercial business, and promote the company’s global portfolio to prospective clients. The lucrative nature of the deal illustrates the considerable volume of money coming into football, and how sponsorship is vital to generating finances to be put towards operating costs and transfers.

 

Chelsea

Although a large percentage of Chelsea’s considerable wealth is based upon the multi-billion investment from Russian owner Roman Abramovich, income is also generated through carefully chosen entries into numerous marketing sectors to create sponsors and business partners. The deal agreed between Chelsea and corporate bookmaker Coral in January 2014 signals a niche opening in the market for football clubs to utilise the gambling industry to grow their brand and receive a percentage of all profits. Coral have become Chelsea’s European online betting partner in a two-and-a-half year deal which sees Chelsea fans across the world providing a professional betting service through Coral’s online and mobile betting platforms. While Coral will not feature in any form of club merchandise, Chelsea fans will continuously benefit from the partnership through exclusive offers, which has already included a free 2013/2014 home shirt for those who place a £25 bet after registering an account with Coral throughout the whole of March.

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categories: France, World Cup 2014
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The Arsenal midfielder Abou Diaby recently revealed he is close to making a return from the knee injury he got in March 2013 and maybe even play in the World Cup 2014.

Since the injury he hasn’t been able to play but have a strong determination to get back in his former strength and shape. People are already placing bets on the World Cup and taking the opportunity to play with GoWild Casino promo code.

Diaby says he is very close to his rehabilitation and keeping things in perspective. He is very impatient but has his goal clear to him, to be back strong and in perfect ease in his body.

“I work hard without asking questions. I work hard because I know in the end I will play again. I am still a high level footballer in my mind, otherwise I would have given up. But I never think to give it up.”

His dedication and conviction to get well and be able to play again is impressive and he definitely has the right mindset to get back on the field, he aims to be back in March 2014.

“My priorities? Feeling fine and play again before the end of the season. I don’t think I will be scared to play. I trust my body. Nowadays I feel strong, but I know coming back to London I will also have some changes. I am watching closely my diet and recovering periods.” Diaby tells.

Diaby has a place in the French national team, and is hoping to be ready to play in the World Cup 2014 in Brazil.

The 27-year old was born in the 10th arrondissement of Paris and been playing for Red Star Paris, Auxerre and now Arsenal. Unfortunately he been struggling with numerous injuries the past years, but he has not giving up on become fully recovered and pursue his career.

 

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category: World Cup 2014
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Denmark’s visit to Wembley on Wednesday night is the first of four matches that Roy Hodgson’s England side will face before their opening World Cup group game against Italy on June 14th.

The England manager insists that places are still up for grabs before he names his 30-man provisional squad on May the 13th which means there is a great chance for first-time international and Southampton defender Luke Shaw to win a place, plus another chance for the in-form Raheem Sterling of Liverpool and Cardiff’s Steven Caulker to win a place on the plane to Brazil.

This will be the last friendly before Hodgson names his 30-man squad, the subsequent friendlies against Peru, Ecuador and Honduras all take place after he has to submit his initial squad.

Speaking to reporters, Hodgson was quick to offer hope to anyone not selected for the game against Denmark.

“It would be very foolish of me in March to give a definitive 30-man squad [for the World Cup],” Hodgson told reporters. “This is the squad I have chosen for now.

“Andy Carroll has hardly played [after returning from injury]. Adam Johnson is a player we know and because of the competition we have decided not to include him in this squad.”

Kyle Walker in unlikely to feature in Wednesday night’s game, while Caulker, Andros Townsend, John Ruddy and Adam Lallana all missed training on Monday morning, a decision on those four won’t be taken until Wednesday.

For the Danes’ Toulouse striker Martin Braithwaite picked up a knock in his side’s 2-0 win over Nice and it has been confirmed he will miss out. Another player who could be absent is Spurs midfielder Christian Eriksen, it is suggested he won’t play unless he is 100% fit.

England will start as favourites to win Wednesday night’s game; this is not a World Cup preparation match for Morten Olsen’s side as they missed out on the play-offs despite finishing as Group B runners-up. Denmark will be hoping to perhaps pick up some momentum before the qualification process for the 2016 European Championships gets underway.

The last time the two sides met, England beat the Danes 2-1 away from home, coming back from a goal down in Copenhagen. Daniel Agger gave the home side the lead after eight minutes but Darren Bent and Ashley Young struck back to give England the friendly victory.

Probable Line-Ups

ENGLAND: Foster – Johnson, Cahill, Smalling, Baines – Lampard, Wilshere, Henderson – Sterling, Welbeck, Sturridge

DENMARK: Schmeichel  - Jacobsen, Kjaer, Bjelland, Agger  - Kvist, Sloth, Eriksen – Kusk, Bendtner, Krohn-Dehli

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category: World Cup 2014
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In the United States, there’s an ongoing conversation about whether or not the national football (or in their words, soccer) team can compete with the best international sides. The truth is, for some time now, the USA has been a middle-of-the-pack team in international football competition. Most European football fans hardly give the USA a second thought. However, a number of factors and developments in the past year have turned it into a real question: can the Yanks sustain their recent good play and become a consistent, quality international competitor?

Let’s be clear: there’s no need to sign in to Bet Fair and put money on the United States winning a World Cup any time soon. But things are headed in the right direction for the Americans. Here are a few specific indications that the upward trend may continue.

The Winning Streak
What’s big news in the U.S. right now has begun to grab some international attention, and perhaps for good reason. The numbers tell it all: in the past 12 international matches, the Yanks are 10-1-1, including a draw in Mexico City – a notoriously hostile environment for visiting teams. Within that record, Team USA has now won an impressive 9 straight. They may not be defeating the likes of Spain and Germany just yet, but when you get to 9 straight, it’s a positive sign no matter which teams you’re playing.

Jurgen Klinsmann’s Success
Earlier this year, frustration with former German star and current U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann was mounting, to the point that a single scathing article generated a great deal of attention, and even some calls for a new coach. Since then, however, Klinsmann’s handling of the team has been masterful. Even benching Landon Donovan, the face of U.S. soccer, seemed to pay off in June, and it now seems as if Klinsmann has built a national team structure that can compete consistently.

Roster Depth
Part of Klinsmann’s success has been in manipulating rosters in a way that has kept the team winning, but also integrated new players. Jozy Altidore, Landon Donovan and Clint Dempsey may get the most attention, but meanwhile the likes of Chris Wondolowski and Eddie Johnson are making significant impacts. The U.S. has gone from a scrappy but imperfect team to a tiered system with options and firepower.

International Success
It’s long been thought that the top players for the U.S. don’t get enough experience in top international leagues to compete well in team international competition. This is beginning to change, slowly but surely. Jozy Altidore has just become a promising new signee for Sunderland, Michael Bradley has done well with Roma, and Dempsey is leading the way with Tottenham Hotspur. The experience seems to be paying off.

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