Neymar transfer: Tax windfall for French

When Brazilian striker Neymar made his shock transfer to Paris St Germaine from Barcelona for the record transfer fee of 222 million euros, fans of the French club cheered. The boost to the club, both in performance and standing would be immense. As it turns out, the tax windfall for the state will be significant.

The initial boost will come from taxes for the player’s salary. Neymar will end up paying close to 37 million Euros per year to the state in taxes and social security payments. Also, the massive transfer will also net the state some 100 million Euros in social security payments from the club.

“The minister of public accounts is delighted by the extra tax income Neymar will pay in France if he joins a French club,” the minister in question, Gerald Darmanin, told France Inter radio station.

“It’s better that this footballer pays his tax here instead of elsewhere.”

Neymar is under investigation in Brazil for tax fraud. When asked if Neymar will attempt any subversive methods of avoiding taxes:

“Don’t worry, the country’s interests, and its financial interests, in particular, will be well taken care of.”

According to rumors, all tax payments will come from the club. Neymar does not want to deal with taxes and other potential legal issues. His salary demands are after tax. In that situation, Neymar will get his salary, and the club will foot the bill for his taxes.

Three Dribbling Drills That Will Heighten Your Awareness and Agility

Summary: Agility is a crucial component when it comes to dribbling. You won’t be able to get past a defender if you aren’t comfortable with the feel of the ball.

Skillful dribbling is a dangerous weapon to have in your arsenal. In order to maintain the advantage over your opponent, you’ll need to use both wit and guise to bypass the toughest defense so you can either set up your teammate for the shot or go all in and nail the game winner.

There are numerous aspects of dribbling to work on like handling a ball in tight space, moving with the ball at a high speed, and outmaneuvering a defender. All of these play a significant role in your overall dribbling skill.

Here are some drills that you can use to take your dribbling to the next level.

Dance With the Ball

The better you are at using every part of the foot to dribble the ball, the more control you’ll have come game time. “Dancing” with the ball consists of touching the top of the ball with the bottom of your feet while alternating from left to right. Try and develop a rhythm as you go along. While you might start off slow and a bit clunky, over time you’ll start getting a natural feel for it and your muscle memory will kick in. This drill helps players maneuver the ball wherever they like and set themselves up for an accurate pass or shot. Additionally, the better feel you have for the ball, the more control you get in the process.


Nimble dribbling can confuse and break down defenders trying to steal the ball away from you. Pair up with another partner and dribble between six to eight cones spread about two feet apart from each other. After zigzagging your way between each cone, swiftly pass the ball to your partner and have him or her perform the same feat. Start slow and work on the basic mechanics of maneuvering around each cone cleanly. After a while, you’ll start to develop a more agile cut and it’ll almost become second nature to you. During game time, you’ll need supreme agility to bring the ball up and around each defender. Additionally, you’ll be able to compliment your passing skills with this drill as well. You can also take this drill to next level by adding a point system. For even cone that’s knocked down, you subtract a point from an overall score. Score one point for each successful run until you reach a total of 20. It might seem frustrating at first, but it’ll undoubtedly take your game to the next level.


One of the most difficult things to do in the game is to hold on to the ball while a defender aggressively tries to steal it from you. If you’re struggling to keep possession of the ball, take a partner and set up a small game of keep-away. Create a 20-yard grid and have your partner tightly defend you as you try to bypass him or her. If your partner manages to steal the ball away from you, switch roles and become the defender. If you can, have a third person call out any illegal moves that may result in a penalty. After all, this isn’t a free-for-all. In a real game, you’re likely to get whistled if you carelessly tackle.

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A winning start for Neymar

Paris Saint-Germain won 3-0 away at Guingamp on Sunday, as Neymar scored once and set up another for Edinson Cavani. The third goal was an own goal by Jordan Ikoko.

The good

Brazilian superstar Neymar made his debut for PSG and did not disappoint. His maiden performance for the club lit up the crowd as he set up the first goal, and contributed with the second. Captain Thiago Silva was solid in the back and ensure that there were no surprises. The French capital team did not underestimate their opponents, and despite a slow, goalless opening half, found gaps in their defense with a methodical and calm approach.

The bad

Three players let down the Parisians: Angel Di Maria, Thiago Motta, Layvin Kurzawa. All three players were far from their best. Their contribution to the game did not reflect the final score. They will need to up their game or swap out for replacement if PSG wants a shot at the title.

The manager

As far as the manager goes, he did a good enough job to secure the victory. Although Emery’s starting XI was good, it was a lack of changes as the match went on that is a concern. Especially, the lack of any changes in the midfield where Angel and Thiago underperformed.

The rest of the team played well, with Neymar the star of the game, with a dream debut for his new club. The future looks good for PSG with Neymar and Cavani developing a good understanding.

Soccer: A day in the life of a pro soccer player

Ever wondered what the day in the life of a professional soccer player is like? Here is the full day schedule of former Manchester United and Everton player Phil Neville:


6:00 am – Phil gets up in the morning and performs some light Yoga. An example is a three-minute flow of sun salutations.

6:30am – Breakfast of porridge and some fruit like strawberries or pineapple. Phil washes down the breakfast with a glass of orange juice and some tea.

8.30am – Hydration is important and he drinks a bottle of water on the way to practice and on the way back.

9.00am – Neville does Yoga again as soon as he gets to practice: “The first thing I do when I’m at the training ground is a 30-minute yoga session with a couple of the other players. Yoga has 26 poses, and our teacher will concentrate on five or six tailored for the movements of football. I pay particular attention to my hips and my groin.”

9.30am – Warm before training consists of 10-25 minutes of cycling at about 80rpm followed by small speed hurdles for 20 minutes.

10.00am – 1.00pm – Soccer specific training for the next two hours followed by a protein shake and relaxation at lunch time. At 1.00pm all the players eat a health lunch of lean protein and vegetables and a salad.

2.00pm – He returns home at 2pm and sleeps for an hour and a half. This afternoon nap is essential for recovery.

The rest of the day is spent with family and continued feeding and protein shakes.

Top soccer clubs in Europe worth more than $33 billion

According to a report by KPMG, the combined enterprise value of the most popular soccer clubs in Europe exceeds $33 billion. The report “Football Clubs’ Valuation: The European Elite 2017” states that the 32 clubs on the list grew by more than 14% in the last year.

English football giants Manchester United lead the list with an enterprise value of more than 3 billion Euros. Second and third on the list fall to Spanish clubs Real Madrid and Barcelona. Amazingly, ten clubs are worth more than a billion euros.

The sport is reaping the benefits of its commercial and television deals:

“While this is partially explained by football’s broadcasting boom, the internationalization of the clubs’ commercial operations, their investment into privately-owned and modern facilities, and overall more sustainable management practices are also key reasons for this growth,” said Andrea Sartori, global head of sports at KPMG

Teams are making smarter choices when it comes to signing commercial sponsorship. It also helps that the English Premier League is a global sport, shown live across the world. This explains why six of the top ten clubs on the list are from the UK. The most recent TV deal awarded in the UK to Sky and BT was worth $6.6 billion.

There are no American clubs on the list, however, with the rapid growth in popularity of the sport, it is only a matter of time before we see an American in the top 10.

U.S. Soccer has $100 million in extra funds

Just after the last FIFA scandal, Traffic Sports and its partners lost the marketing rights to Copa America (The America’s Cup). The rights went up for auction, and the winning bid was from Soccer United Marketing. SUM is the marketing arm of Major League Soccer (MLS) and a partner of U.S. Soccer.

The U.S. men’s national team gets a share of the money from the tournament. Add that to the sale of marketing rights to Copa America and U.S. Soccer is now swimming in cash. The share from the tournament was $46 million which takes its total surplus to more than $100 million.

U.S. Soccer is now trying to figure out what to do with that money.

The first step was to double the payment to the U.S. Women’s national team. Although the women’s team did not get equal pay as the men’s team, they did get the structure they wanted:

“We’re trying to figure out where women’s soccer is going, so we may not have the same exact structure as the men. So equal isn’t the right word. It would be equitable because we are asking for a different structure.”

The bigger plan currently under discussion is to build a national training center. The training center will look to France’s world-renowned Clairefontaine for inspiration. Also, the plan is to set up some youth academies in areas that do not have Development Academy clubs.

Another suggestion is to increase the number of talent scouts, as there are only nine scouts for the entire of the U.S., which is 27 times the size of Germany.

How to warm up for a soccer game

Warming up is extremely important. Doing so reduces the chance of injury and allows a player to perform at his/her peak faster and for longer. Here is an example of a soccer warm up routine:


The first step is to increase circulation, especially from the parts of the body that have poor circulation like the ankles and calves. Professional players start with a light massage by the team’s physio or massage therapists. Next is some active warm-up with about ten minutes of light jogging. If you have seen a similar warm up, it involves jogging forward, sideways along with some backpedaling and rotations.

Dynamic stretching

Soccer coaches agree that as part of warm up, dynamic stretching is better than static. This is because static stretching does not move a muscle through its full range of motion, increasing the chance of injury. Dynamic stretches have you running through the full range of motion and increase the flow of blood and oxygen to the soft muscle tissue.

The typical set of dynamic stretching includes:

Hamstring stretches

Lunge walks

Back lunges

Glutes walk


Quad walk

Squat walk

Side lunge



Technical warmup

This is the final phase of the warm up. This is called technical because it involves actual soccer movements. Some teams run players through a compressed practice session to prime the nervous system.

It might seem a long process, but a good warm up will allow you to play at your best for longer, all while minimizing the risk of injury.

Tips and tricks on improving at soccer

Soccer ball and goal

Written by Soccer Garage

Here are some tips and tricks on how to improve your soccer game:

Practice – Although this might be obvious, the only way to get better, that is significantly better, is to practice. In sports, there are no shortcuts. Is there a player that is clearly better than you? That is because they practice and work harder. You cannot buy your way to an improvement.

Fitness – Soccer is a physical sport. Build up speed, agility, and your fitness levels and become a high-performance player. A well-trained body can make up for technical deficiencies. Training should involve strength work, plyometric training, sprints, core work, etc. Make sure you have several pairs of soccer footwear for various types of play.

Pressure – Train the way you expect to play. Too many players practice alone. It is easy to manage all the drills alone. Take the next step and practice at game speed under pressure from a defender. Playing at speed is how you iron out mistakes.

Diet and Lifestyle – You cannot out-exercise a bad diet. The basics are to eat healthily and get at least eight hours of sleep. With proper training, your body will need time to recover. Proper recovery is the only way to train every day without crashing.

Gear – Make sure you have everything you need regarding gear. Everything from your soccer socks to your shoes should be packed and ready for the next day or two days of training.  Hitting the training ground at 6 am means everything should be ready.


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The principles of endurance training for soccer

In the same way that strength training for soccer involves more than just lifting weights, improving endurance is more than just building an aerobic base. The typical soccer player has very specific endurance needs. According to soccer apparel vendor Umbro, soccer players spend on average 30% of a game walking, 30-40% jogging and at least 25% of the time running. These require very different modes of training to optimize each. Here are the primary principles of endurance training for soccer:


The training should be sport specific and tailored to each type of movement. For example, soccer players will run, and swimmers will swim. Above that, for each phase of the game, soccer players should optimize for walking, jogging, and running.


The training sessions should be intense enough to create training effort. Unless the player pushes beyond existing levels, they will not see any benefit from the training. Also, even when they do, they need to keep pushing until they reach a target performance level.


As per the above, when a player keeps pushing, they will eventually reach a point where it will be their new comfort zone. This is why a training program with a progression built-in. There must be targets, along with new targets for when they pass previous milestones.


This is the most important of all. Take enough time to recover from training. The above training programs are tough both physically and mentally. The central nervous system can only take so much of a strain.


The basic soccer skills children will need to learn

chicagofirerecsoccerSoccer is the most popular sport in the world. The main reason for this popularity, other than the sport itself, is the relatively little equipment that is required to play. At its most basic level, all you need is a ball. However, the skill level required to play can be quite high. Here are the most basic soccer skills a child will need to practice in order to become better at the game:


This is the most basic soccer skill. It is also the first thing that every child should learn. Practice dribbling by arranging pylons and asking the kids to dribble around them. Dribbling is done with the laces of the boots while not kicking the ball.


Once dribbling is under control and kids have decent ball control, the next step is to learn to pass the ball. It is one of the most important skills. They should learn to pass to teammates and to receive passes. They should use the instep and accurately pass the ball.


This is the most popular part of soccer for most kids. The ball should be kicked with the laces of the shoe rather than the toe. Kicking with the toe will result in inaccurate shots. The knee should be over the ball at the point of the strike.

These are three most important soccer skills for any young soccer player. As the saying goes, practice makes perfect, and the more they practice, the better they will get.