Written by The 91st

Arriola

Paul Arriola made waves last week when he announced that he was signing with Mexico’s Club Tijuana rather than accepting an offer to stay domestic with the LA Galaxy.

Arriola, the NSCAA 2012 Boys Player of the Year and US Soccer Program youth star, is one of the best young prospects in the country.  His departure from the Galaxy came as a big loss for the club, but Arriola explained to the 91st Minute why he feels it’ll be a gain for him.

“After training with Tijuana in December, then going to preseason with LA in January I was able to get a feel for how I’d fit in at both of the clubs,” Arriola told us. “I made very clear to all of my options (LA Galaxy and UCLA) that I wanted to be a pro and Tijuana was very much an option.”

Biggest factors in your decision were … “The main thing that I want is to continue to develop and grow as a player, I am still young and believe in myself that in a good, professional environment I can continue to develop for the next couple of years and with the Under20 league down there.  The fact that I will get great games down there where I will be pushed to be better (is important).”

 

What connection do you have with Tijuana?

“The Xolos is my home team. Growing up and living in Chula Vista, 10 miles from the border of Tijuana, Xolos fans are everywhere. Everyone in Chula Vista, and I’d say most of San Diego, roots for Xolos.”

 

What are you most looking forward to?

“Being in a professional environment and playing games. Mexico isn’t the easiest places for some people to play in, but I think that the way Club Tijuana is set up they provide a lot more support than most clubs do. I am extremely excited to start the next season and I thank God for the wonderful opportunity that he has given me!

 

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Written by Dill Pickle

I’m going to tell Ajax what my mother used to tell me: If you’re not going to take care of your Eredivisie League trophy, then I’ll give it to someone who will! 

Well, that was paraphrased, anyway. Ajax clearly isn’t valuing its hardware, though, as we watch Daley Blind (above) just pull the commemorative plate to the ground during the title ceremony. Come on, Daley! That was something a baby would do (or, someone named ‘Blind’), let’s take better care of our toys.

Ajax actually has a history of this (after the jump). Don’t be surprised if my mom pays you a visit, fellas. I won’t be able to help you there.

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Written by The 91st

Jimmy Conrad got a firsthand look at the soccer frenzy in Argentina when he ventured to watch top two teams Boca Juniors and River Plate in El Superclasico.

Conrad investigates the history and passion of the famous rivalry in this entertaining clip.

 

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Written by The 91st

Ref

Ricardo Portillo, a 46-year-old Utah referee, died after being assaulted a week ago during a soccer game.

Police have accused a 17-year-old player in a recreational soccer league of punching Portillo after the man called a foul on him and issued him a yellow card.

The teen has been booked into juvenile detention on suspicion of aggravated assault.

Portillo suffered swelling in his brain and had been listed in critical condition before passing away Saturday.

This incident is just the latest in a disturbing trend of soccer violence involving referees.

[Associated Press]

 

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Written by The 91st

Let’s just say this didn’t meet my expectations. Pepe Reina is world-class, so when they stuck him in front of this Batak machine I was expecting greatness. What I didn’t expect is that he’d be blind in one eye and would continually complain about the brightness of the buttons – yeah, ok, grandpa!

Clearly, Pepe Reina never played Gopher Hole growing up. For an example of how it’s supposed to be done, check out the coordinated guy after the jump.

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Written by The 91st

(Action starts at 3:50)

You know what they say: if you can’t beat em … beat em!

Who says that, exactly? No one sane. Yaroslav Dmitriev does, though. The Russian forward got straight violent during an Estonian second division match. Seemingly out of nowhere, he karate kicks his defender and then kicks the ball at him. Then he SAID THIS.

And he meant it, too.

 

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Written by Dill Pickle

Following an NBA Playoff game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and Houston Rockets, a parent-less and pant-less baby just decided to walk on camera and do baby things.

For the first 15 seconds he was as still as an ornament; he had no clue what he was doing or where he was going (shoot, where are any of us going, really?). But then he realized: hey, these people put their pants on one leg at a time just like I do (false, kid. You’re mom puts your pants on, and “these people” keep theirs on … the whole day!), let’s walk out here and see what happens.

I love his audacity. This kid is going places … likely, to the bathroom.

 

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Written by The 91st

Wolverton prayer

I’ve never heard of God accepting coupons, but it’s gotta be worth a try right?

Wolverhampton is desperate to win and avoid relegation, so much so that they’ve placed a prayer in their local newspaper from the Bishop of Wolverhampton – the Rt Reverend Clive Gregory.

So now Wolves fans have something to hold onto to – literally. They can cut out the prayer and hope to God that he still reads the newspaper (no one else does).

 

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Written by The 91st

Dude, what are you DOING?! Are you blind in one eye like Seabiscuit??

For the sake of this Serbian goalkeeper’s skill level (this happened during a Serbian Super Liga match, by the way – good times!), I actually hope this was intentional. I hope he’s throwing the match for money and totally forgot that, “Hey, I have to make this look realistic.”

Otherwise, there’s no excuse. You had one job, bro, and you fell asleep on the clock. Clear out your desk.

 

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Written by The 91st

Yesterday, we shared a story about 8-year-old Atticus, a cancer patient who played against the Portland Timbers in a scrimmage as a part of his Make-A-Wish Foundation request.

Well, the Timbers have released the video on the entire day, from his arrival to all the special interactions between him and the team. If this doesn’t get you misty-eyed, you should cook with more onion.

 

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