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Evening Ticker: Pepe apologizes to Messi, SKC signs Peterson and more

Pepe Messi (AP)


Facing media scrutiny and the possibility of disciplinary action, Pepe has issued an apology to Leo Messi.

Well, sort of.

A day after what appeared to be a deliberate step on Messi's hand in Real Madrid's 2-1 loss to Barcelona, Pepe told Real Madrid's website that it was an involuntary act. The Portuguese international, who is no stranger to dirty antics, went on to ask Messi for his forgiveness if the Argentine felt offended. Pepe also said the thought of harming a fellow player never crossed his mind.

Pepe could still be subject to a sanction by his team or the federation prior to next week's return leg against Barcelona in the Copa del Rey.

Here are more stories from Thursday:


The rich continue to get richer, as Sporting Kansas City added another option to its stable of forwards by signing Jacob Peterson. The winger/forward should provide some cover in the wide forward spots in Sporting KC's 4-3-3 system.

In his six year career, the 25-year-old has previously spent time with the San Jose Earthquakes, Toronto FC and the Colorado Rapids. Peterson will compete with Teal Bunbury, C.J. Sapong, Kei Kamara, Dom Dwyer and Soony Saad for playing time.


The Vancouver Whitecaps added midfielder Jun Marques Davidson to its roster, pending the receipt of his international transfer certificate and visa. A dual American/Japanese citizen, Davidson lands in Vancouver after spending the 2011 season with J.League Division Two side Tokushima Vortis. The 28-year-old previously spent time playing under Whitecaps head coach Martin Rennie when he was in charge of the Carolina RailHawks in 2010.


Blackburn is looking to distance itself away from the relegation zone, and it acquired striker Anthony Modeste from Bordeaux on loan until the end of the season with the hopes that he will help them do that. Modeste, 23, joins the Rovers after scoring three goals in 15 games for Bordeaux in the first half of the season. The loan deal does not include an option the buy.


Mark Hughes looks set to make his first capture as manager of Queens Park Rangers. Hughes is poised to land Taye Taiwo of AC Milan, pending the approval of a work permit. Initial reports suggest the move for Taiwo will be a six-month loan.


What do you think of Pepe's apology? Think Peterson will play a substantial role for Sporting Kansas City this season? How do you see Modeste doing with Blackburn?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. A player like Pepe would have been dealt in the pitch during my playing days! He needs an atitud adjustment and fast! before he really injures severely another player.

  2. Mike well said. How does Peterson still get chance after chance. He is so bad. I would rather skc just bring up another youth player or give that player a chance. hopefully they cut him. he should of never been a pro in the first place

  3. I don’t see anything wrong with the raising of hands by defenders when they’re trying to get an offsides call. I’ve always seen that as a signal rather than a protest. Raising their arms in an attempt to get an offsides call is very different from complaining to a ref.

  4. For some reason, Madrid loses its head when they face Barca. Or, Barca has got into their heads. Either way, they just continue to discredit their great legacy. The blame lies squarely on Mourino. The man cannot tactically counteract the skills and team play of Barca and resorts to playing someone like Pepe in the midfield whose only responsibility is to hack down Barca players.

    I think its best for Madrid players and fans to be humble and acknowledge that Barca is just a better side. Maybe they will then begin to figure out a way to move the club forward. They are quickly becoming a disgrace to Spanish football.

  5. Saw it live, it was clearly intentional and malicious. He should get 8 games like Jermaine Jones, no? Hell he should get 80 given Messi >> Reus. But he won’t.

  6. wow time flies but i think your right…i agree, i mean the game is meant to be physical and to be played with a lot of emotion, but if ur a quality player- u gotta know when your going to far. Pepe is a great player but his decision making is questionable

  7. Unfortunately it appears that Jose will let Pepe take the fall for some more brutal football. His 7-3 formation will get an undeserved pass in the cacophony for Pepe’s blood. Jose also knows that his false praise for Pepe’s play won’t last a second against Puyol’s unmarked goal. Real has the talent to play Barcelona, however the coach doesn’t appear to have the courage.

  8. I agree with Jim B.

    Messi leads by example and he never goes down easily and hates diving and for good reason. He scores goals by staying on his feet. Puyol is the heart and soul of the team and he plays hard but not dirty. Iniesta, Busquets and Xavi have been known to dive but I didn’t see anything from them the last two superclassicos.

    Barca is definitely the more classy team. They whine a lot to the refs and aren’t perfect.

  9. Barcelona is just as guilty, yes, but you can’t really say that they came away as the greater disgrace. Both teams flop, fight, and complain. They feed off each other.

  10. Just to point out the reason why Assistants miss offside calls sometimes is not due to incompetence or lack of training or anything. It has to do with the basic physiological fact that the eye cannot process the information correctly.

    So if you’re at the point where offside is within say a yard…not really fair to blame the official.

  11. While I might agree with this post based on this last clásico, Barcelona is just as guilty as Madrid of playing dirty. After last season’s encounters, many would argue that Barcelona came away as the greater disgrace.

  12. How can you equate the two? Sure, they may swarm the ref constantly but that is because of the constant hacking, hand stomping, heads being shoved to the ground etc. etc. etc.. Make no mistake, Barca are not even close to perfect but the current incarnation of Real embodies all that is wrong with modern soccer. Well, not all that is wrong. There is FIFA corruption, match fixing and more but that discussion is for another time. Oh yeah, @&$% Pepe

  13. Real isn’t the only team diving and cheating for fouls. Open your eyes to the way Barca plays the ref. This isn’t as clear cut as good v. evil as you make it out to be

  14. I can’t believe SKC signed Peterson. When are they going to make a splash? For a team that did so well last year all that seems to be happening now is backsliding. Paolo and Bobby are decent signings. Thomas is intriguing but Joseph? Wonder if they will get a kit sponsor and actually spend on a name or two. They have to have cap space after Omar fehat a loss!) and waiving so many players.

  15. I grew up an Arsenal supporter during their ‘invincibles’ period, and now love my hometown SKC, so I don’t really care about either Barca or Real. However, it seems to me that the two teams are diametrically opposed and represent the best and worst in modern soccer. Barca plays a fast and beautiful pass based game and while they do spend ludicrous amounts of money on talent, they have what is perhaps the finest youth pipeline in the modern game.

    Real, however, simply try to spend their way to success. If you are a star, Real will pay for you. No matter your ego, playing style or past problems. This clearly comes across in their style of play. They are not a team. They are simply a collection of selfish soccer mercenaries, starting with JM and working through the ranks. They dive, cheat, foul, attempt to injure, and when faced with a superior opponent (Barca) play an ugly defensive game and hope they get lucky.

    Sorry for the long rant, but I simply so not understand how anyone born outside Madrid could possibly cheer for this pathetic excuse for a team. They truly embody everything that is wrong with the modern game. Oh yeah, @&$% Pepe!

  16. It annoys me too, but sometimes the line judges do miss the offsides calls from time time and sometimes the players are right to plead a case because it is a direct goal-scoring opportunity. I do agree that the SuperClasico has become a rather thug match instead of two trivals trying to prove who’s better by their “performance” on the pitch. The complaining to the refs has made the SuperClasico seem like the “SuperB!tching Contest”, then an actual game itself.

  17. No Jon, he has no stones and it was seemingly voluntary and cheap. Also, to see him squealing on the other end like a punk whenever he got knocked off the ball is a disgrace. I love watching the SuperClasico but I hate how both teams complain and circle around the ref after EVERY call. F**king disgrace. Also, is it just me or does anyone else hate with a passion how players have the habit of raising their hand for an offside call like ten times a game??? IMO refs need to take a more strict approach and card any player who complains constantly or tells off a sideline ref. It takes away from the game and it sickens me.

  18. No, pepe didn’t apologize. If you read the quote attributed to him, he claims it was a “involuntary act” and asks Messi, if he’s ofended, to forgive him.

    This one has stones, asking for forgiveness without apologizing or admitting anything. The quotes:

    “as far as the play with Leo Messi, I want to say that it was an involuntary act.”

    “even so, if Messi is offended I ask his forgiveness because I want to defend my team and club … It never passed through my head to cause harm to a fellow professional.”


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