Wednesday Kickoff: UCL yellow cards stand, Fulham make history and more

Wednesday Kickoff: UCL yellow cards stand, Fulham make history and more

European Soccer

Wednesday Kickoff: UCL yellow cards stand, Fulham make history and more


ChelseaCard (Getty Images)

Chelsea and Bayern Munich will have their respective roster depth tested in the biggest match of the season. Officially.

The six Chelsea and Bayern Munich players suspended for the UEFA Champions League final because of card accumulation will remain suspended, after UEFA stated that its rule regarding cards would not change ahead of the final and for at least the next three years.

There was hope in some circles that the rule would be overturned because UEFA employs a different rule in the European championship. All yellow cards are wiped out prior to the semifinal round, giving players more leeway throughout the tournament. Nevertheless, the rule stands, and Chelsea's Branislav Ivanonic, Ramires and Raul Meireles and Bayern Munich's David Alaba, Luiz Gustavo and Holger Badstuber will remain ineligible for the final. 

"Different rules can apply in different competitions. The rules are a result of careful, democratic procedure," Michael van Praag, chairman of UEFA's Champions League rules and competition workshop, told reporters.

Here are a few more stories to get your Wednesday going:


It was far from pretty, but Fulham won at Anfield for the first time ever with a 1-0 victory over Liverpool on Tuesday.

Martin Skrtel's own goal accounted for the scoring, as he finished off a play orchestrated by Clint Dempsey. The American standout received the ball, turned, ran at a defender, competed a stepover and slotted a ball out left for John Arne Riise. The former Liverpool player's cross was redirected into the net by Skrtel in the fifth minute, and the Cottagers won a top flight match in Merseyside for the first time in 41 games.

Dempsey came close on two occasions to scoring his 23rd goal in all competitions, heading a corner kick wide and having an open look from inside the area stuffed by a diving Doni. 


Andre Villas Boas' next challenge appears to be bringing Roma back to the European spotlight. 

According to reports out of Portugal, the Chelsea castaway will replace Luis Enrique as Roma manager this summer. Big things were expected out of Villas Boas when he took over as Chelsea boss after a brilliant run with Porto, but he never found his footing in the Premier League and was axed by Roman Abramovich midway through the season.

Roma are limping to the finish line in Serie A and are in danger of missing out on European competition altogether. They sit three points behind Inter Milan and Udinese for Italy's UEFA Europa League spots, but must also contend with Lazio, whom they trail by three points as well.


Score another one for China's soccer league.

Borussia Dortmund and Paraguay striker Lucas Barrios, 27, is leaving the Bundesliga for China's defending champion Guangzhou Evergrande, reportedly signing a four-year contract with the club.

Barrios is a year removed from a 16-goal campaign, but he lost his place in the back-to-back champions' lineup to injury and never recovered it after the emergence of Robert Lewandowski.


Did you think those players should have had their suspensions lifted for the final? What do you make of Fulham's win? Think Roma is a good fit for Villas Boas? Surprised a player of Barrios' caliber and age is making the move to China?

Share your thoughts below.

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