Final Whistle: Taylor-made GM, Cosmos style

In a wide-ranging interview, Taylor Twellman indicates he’d like to
try his hand at learning the trade of an MLS general manager. He also
has a strong opinion about whether Robbie Findley belongs on the US national team.

GMs of five MLS clubs are reportedly looking at a 29-year-old central defender who plays for the Newcastle Jets, the Australian club that defeated the LA Galaxy a few weeks back.

Two former MLS players have an important role in developing players
for the New York Cosmos and they talk about the style of play they are
teaching their academy stars. They are set on the 4-3-3.

Former MLS manager Carlos Alberto Parreira points out that FC
Barcelona’s style of play is not something that was developed in the
last two to three years. He says it’s been 30 to 40 years in the making. (SPANISH)

Could former Chile manager Marcelo Bielsa make a shock return to the national team he coached at the 2010 World Cup? The new Chilean Federation president, under which Bielsa said he would not work, has been ousted.

Politics, politics. FIFA president Sepp Blatter criticized the arrogance of the western world of Christian background for their reactions after the World Cup hosts were named.

Another soccer VIP, UEFA president Michel Platini, also offers some scathing commentary. He refers to a group of players as “useless” and “idiots” who deserved a lifetime ban.

No surprises in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday with all the
big names going through to the knockout stage, including Arsenal and AS
Roma. The surprise may have been Karim Benzema netting a hat trick for
Real Madrid in a 4-0 victory. His compatriot Franck Ribéry also netted
two in Bayern Munich’s 3-0 win.

Sporting Braga are out but they could care less what happened in
their Champions League group match. The Portuguese club says its performance in domestic-league play is all that matters.

Manchester United were one of four EPL clubs to advance to the
Champions League's final 16. Bulgarian sniper Dimitar Berbatov wants to end his career with the Red Devils, according to his representative.

Staying in the EPL, Newcastle will have a new manager, and it won’t be Martin Jol. The question now is, will St. James Park accept him?

In a gesture which will continue to endear him to the Anfield Road
faithful, Liverpool’s American owner, John Henry, has introduced a new ticket promotion for the club’s next Europa League match.

European champions Inter Milan will be part of the FIFA Club World
Cup, but they’re not flying to Abu Dhabi in the best of
form. The pressure is dialed up for manager Rafa Benítez, with owner
Massimo Moratti claiming the team lacks the necessary character. (ITALIAN)

Al Wahda, the champions from host nation United Arab Emirates,
advanced past a team from Papua New Guinea in the play-in match of the
FIFA Club World Cup on Wednesday and will next face Seongnam of South Korea on Saturday.

In another part of the world, soccer in Ghana is in disarray after
the government’s organized crime unit raided the federation’s offices. Now the clubs have withdrawn from the domestic league.

Smack of the middle of his ESPN column, PTI’s Michael Wilbon reveals his first-ever assignments in his career as a journalist: professional soccer.

SI.com’s Grant Wahl tells the story of one Atlanta girl who had her soccer dreams fulfilled by a non-profit that helps cancer-stricken soccer fans meet their heroes.

Finally, a goalkeeper from the Moroccan league revived the scorpion kick made famous by Colombian René Higuita. (VIDEO)

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