Rio De Janeiro, July 6 (AP/UNB) — Can a team that was trashed by the favorites in a major soccer tournament win a final against the same opponent only two weeks later?
The answer will be known on Sunday after Copa América host Brazil takes on underdogs Peru in an unexpected final at Rio de Janeiro's historic Maracanã Stadium in front of 70,000 fans.
Brazil is chasing its ninth Copa title and first since 2007. Peru won in 1939 and 1975.
Brazil has won all four Copa América editions it hosted, the last in 1989 when Romário scored the winner against Uruguay at the same Maracanã.
Only two weeks ago the Brazilians crushed their neighbors 5-0 at São Paulo's Arena Corinthians, with goals by Casemiro, Roberto Firmino, Éverton, Dani Alves and Willian. It could have been six for the hosts if Gabriel Jesus had not missed a penalty near the end. That result nearly eliminated the Peruvians from the tournament.
But the final will be a totally different affair, players from both teams insist.
"Each match has a different story," said Brazilian striker Éverton, the team's sharpest dribbler at Copa América and scorer of two goals.
He is playing in the injured Neymar's position, and will have either Filipe Luis, who is returning from injury, or Alex Sandro, to help him on the left flank.
Veteran Peru striker Paolo Guerrero, the team's most recognizable player, agrees the title is up for grabs.
"There are no favorites in a final. Both teams are there because they deserved it," Guerrero said, despite admitting he will miss injured midfielder Jefferson Farfán in the final.
Midfielder Edison Flores, who has scored two goals in Copa América, is also a doubt.
Brazil enjoyed three clear victories against Bolivia (3-0), Peru (5-0) and Argentina (2-0). But many fans focus on the two goalless draws against Venezuela and Paraguay to put more pressure on coach Tite for his conservative choices. Players came out in his defense on Friday after a news report emerged saying he could choose to leave regardless of the result in the final.
Peru only advanced to the knockout stage as one of the top two teams finishing the group stage in third position. It drew against unimpressive Venezuela 0-0 and beat weak Bolivia 3-1 to move to the quarterfinals. But after the heavy defeat to Brazil Peru picked itself up in style, eliminating favorites Uruguay on penalties and crushing defending champions and archrivals Chile 3-0 in the semifinals.
Brazil fans tend to have little expectation about South American cup finals, even when they are hosting, but see the tournament as an interesting measurement of the team's chances in the next World Cup. Losing could mean a bumpy road ahead, since members of Tite's coaching staff either left or are about to leave, and many veteran players are unlikely to play in Qatar in 2022.
For Peruvian fans the anticipation is evident, seeking their first trophy in 44 years despite Brazil's favorite tag. More than 30,000 of them are likely to be in Rio for the match.
Peru fans are looking everywhere for inspiration, including two matches as far back as the 1954 World Cup. Hungary had some of the best players in the world at the time. The West Germans were only underdogs when the tournament began. In the first clash between the two teams at the group stage, the Hungarians beat a reserve-filled West Germany 8-3. But two weeks later, the Germans beat the favorites 3-2 to win their first title.
Cafu, a 1994 and 2002 World Cup winner with Brazil, said Friday that Brazil was favorite to win but added a caution.
"It is the obvious favorite, but that doesn't mean it has already won the match," he said.
The match will be Brazil's first at the Maracanã in six years.
Dhaka, July 6 (UNB)- Dhaka Mohammedan SC upset Chattogram Abahani beating them 2-0 in the ongoing 13-team Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) Football at Bangabandhu National Stadium here on Saturday.
After a barren first half, Japanese midfielder Uryu Nagata opened the Mohammedan account in the 66th minute converting a penalty while Mali striker Souleymane Diabate netted second goals in the 72nd minute (2-0).
In day’s another match, Sheikh Russel KC beat Sheikh Jamal DC 2-1 at Sylhet District Stadium.
Midfielder Biplu Ahmed scored for Sheikh Russel KC in 23rd minute (1-0) while Gambian striker Solomon King Kanform leveled the margin for Sheikh Russel KC in the 26th minute converting a penalty (1-1).
Defender Mohamed Khalequzzaman scored the match winner for hosts Sheikh Russel KC in the 40th minute (2-1).
With day’s feat, Dhaka Mohammedan advanced to the 9th slot from 11th securing 17 points from 18 matches while Chattogram Abahani remain 6th with their previous credit of 22 points from 19 encounters.
Sheikh Russel KC remained at 3rd slot behind Bashundhara Kings (49 pts) and Dhaka Abahani Ltd (45 pts) securing 39 from their 18 matches while Sheikh Jamal DC remain 7th with their previous credit of 21 points from 19 matches.
Dhaka, July 6 (UNB) - Muktijoddha Sangsad KC played to a goalless draw with Rahmatganj MFS in the ongoing Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) football at Sheikh Fazlul Haque Moni Stadium in Gopalganj on Saturday.
With the draw, Muktijoddha SKC have earned 18 points from 18 league encounters while Rahmatganj MFS bagged 16 points playing 19 matches.
The first-leg match between the two teams ended in 2-2 draw at the Bangabandhu National Stadium here on February 19.
Ivorian striker Ballo Famoussa had scored two goals for Muktijoddha SKC while Bangladeshi midfielder Sohel Rana and striker Chowmrin Rakhanie one goal each for Rahmatganj in that encounter.
France, July 6 (AP/UNB) — Alex Morgan said her tea-sipping celebration at the Women's World Cup was a nod to actress Sophie Turner's amusing Instagram posts.
No, it wasn't a dig at England or a random reference to the Boston Tea Party, or any number of other theories out there.
"My celebration was actually more 'that's the tea,' which is telling a story, spreading news," the U.S. forward said.
Morgan has been criticized for the celebration. Her former teammate on the Orlando Pride, Lianne Sanderson, a broadcast commentator during the World Cup for beIN Sports, called the celebration "distasteful."
"She can celebrate however she wants and I'm a big believer in the Americans and how they celebrate but this was disrespectful," said Sanderson, a former striker for England.
Morgan pretended to sip tea after scoring the go-ahead goal in Tuesday night's semifinal victory over England. Goalkeeper Alysaa Naeher preserved the 2-1 victory by stopping Steph Houghton's penalty kick late in the game.
The victory sent the Americans into their third consecutive World Cup final. They'll face the Netherlands for the championship on Sunday at Stade de Lyon.
Morgan spoke to reporters Friday, clarifying the source of the goal celebration and referencing the "Game of Thrones" actress. Turner's Instagram is filled with her saying audacious or gossipy things, adding "That's the tea" and taking a sip.
"I feel that there is some sort of double standard for females in sports to feel like we have to be humble in our successes and have to celebrate but not too much, or do something but always in a limited fashion," Morgan said.
She said it's hard to understand the outrage when men have celebrated goals by grabbing their crotches.
The U.S. team has drawn some criticism for its goal celebrations in France. First it was the repeated celebrations after every goal in a 13-0 rout of Thailand, which some said were unsportsmanlike. Carli Lloyd responded in the next game with a golf clap after her goal.
Megan Rapinoe struck an "Are you not entertained?" pose in the quarterfinals against France before Morgan's tea sipping in the semis.
"Everybody's just kind of having fun with the celebrations and embracing the moment," Lloyd said.
Turner herself responded to Morgan on social media while on her honeymoon after marrying Joe Jonas.
"Unfortunately the UK women's football team lost at the World Cup. And of course I'm incredibly sad and incredibly proud of that team, but I am so honored that we lost to such and incredible team, the U.S. women's football team. Alex Morgan, all the haters saying that this is disrespectful, I'm honored that you thought of me," Turner said.
Yorkshire Tea company made light of Morgan's celebration, tweeting a photo of a bag of tea readied for shipping.
"Dear @USWNT, Sorry you had to drink pretend tea. If you'd run out of the proper stuff, you only had to ask! PS No hard feelings - good luck on Sunday."
Dhaka, July 6 (UNB)- Atletico Madrid have accused Antoine Griezmann and Barcelona of "disrespect" and say the La Liga champions talked to their forward in March, reports BBC.
Atletico say they have rejected Barcelona's offer and ordered Frenchman Griezmann to report for pre-season.
In a statement, the Madrid club expressed their "strongest repulsion for the behaviour of both, especially Barcelona".
Griezmann, 28, said in May he would leave Atletico this summer.
The France international has scored 94 La Liga goals in 180 games for Atletico and is widely expected to move to Barcelona.
He has a buyout clause in his contract of 120m euros but Atletico say their La Liga rivals want to postpone payment and were talking to him months ago.
"Obviously, the response from Atletico was negative. Understand that both Barcelona and the player have disrespected Atletico and all its fans," the Atletico statement added.
"On 14 May, Antoine Griezmann informed the club of his decision to leave the club at the end of the season.
"In the days following that meeting, Atletico learned that Barcelona and the player had reached an agreement last March, specifically in the days after the second leg of our Champions League tie against Juventus, and had been negotiating the terms of the agreement since mid-February.
"[This is] something we consider violates protected periods of negotiation with players and alters the basic rules that govern the integrity of all sports competition, besides being a huge loss to our club and its millions of fans."
'We never talk about other players'
Earlier on Friday, Barca president Josep Bartomeu said the club had made contact with Griezmann and that their former forward Neymar "wants to leave Paris St-Germain".
Brazil international Neymar left Barcelona for PSG in 2017 for a world record fee of 222m euros (£200m) and has been linked with a return.
Bartomeu also said he knows where 19-year-old Netherlands defender Matthijs de Ligt, strongly linked with a move away from Ajax, will be playing next season.
Barcelona have already signed De Ligt's international team-mate Frenkie de Jong from the Dutch champions.
"The first contact with Griezmann was yesterday," said Bartomeu on Friday. "There is an interest, that's why we got together.
"We never talk about players from other teams.
"We know Neymar wants to leave PSG but we know that PSG do not want Neymar to leave.
"I said long ago I knew where De Ligt would play. I still know it and I cannot say more."
During the unveiling of De Jong, Bartomeu was asked about Atletico's statement, adding: "We are introducing De Jong and I will talk about it at another time."