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Tuesday Kickoff: Beckenbauer wants ethics report published; Casillas nearly left Real Madrid; and more

FranzBeckenbauer1 (Getty)


Another high-profile soccer figure is firmly on the side of those calling for FIFA to publish the contents of their ethics report into the bidding and voting process of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.

Former German soccer star Franz Beckenbauer told reporters at a conference in London that he didn’t think FIFA had any reason to fear the report being released, and called for it to be published.

“Personally there’s nothing to hide,” Beckenbauer said. “If you have nothing to hide you can publish and divulge it.”

The former FIFA Executive Committee member, who was briefly suspended from all soccer-related activity in June for refusing to cooperate with Michael Garcia’s ethics investigation, claimed he never took a bribe or gift in exchange for his vote in the World Cup elections. However, he refused to say who he voted for.

“Nobody offered me anything in order to influence my vote. No. This did not happen,” Beckenbauer said. “As far as the vote is concerned I can’t say anything because it was a secret ballot and I have to observe this agreement made at the time.”

Here are some more stories to kick off your Tuesday:


Iker Casillas is back as the Real Madrid No. 1 goalkeeper, but he admitted while he was the backup he nearly left the club.

The Real Madrid captain gave a lengthy interview to Spanish sport channel Canal Plus, and said that during the tough times where he was benched in place of Diego Lopez, Casillas considered heading to greener pastures.

“I thought about going,” Casillas said. “If you’re a bother and you don’t want to have any run-ins with anyone… What you want is for Real Madrid to always win. But in the end, at 33 years of age, you think, why should I? I want to fight, to make a go of it, to be reborn form the ashes.”

Casillas revealed that despite plenty of speculation that Arsenal were set to bid for the Spanish National Team goalkeeper, there was never a “concrete” offer.

“There was a lot of talk about an offer from Arsenal, but there was nothing concrete,” Casillas said. “I want to stay at Real Madrid, keep fighting here and finish my career here.”


La Liga president Javier Tebas warned that if Catalonia ever breaks away from Spain, that Barcelona and Espanyol will be kicked out of La Liga. (REPORT)

Sergio Ramos has been ruled out of Spain’s Euro 2016 qualification match against Slovakia after a scan revealed a partially torn calf muscle. (REPORT)

Brazil will take on Austria in Vienna a friendly match on Nov. 18. (REPORT)

Schalke 04 have fired coach Jens Keller and replaced him with former Chelsea player and manager Roberto Di Matteo. (REPORT)

Former Mexico National Team manager Jose Manuel “Chepo” de la Torre is being considered for the vacant Chivas de Guadalajara job after former coach Carlos Bustos resigned. (REPORT)


What do you think of these reports? What do you think of Beckenbauer’s comments? Is it ironic that he won’t reveal who he voted for? Do you see Casillas staying at Real Madrid for life?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Casillas could have been a DP for any MLS team, like for NYCFC or even Galaxy. Speaking of DPs, I have an idea MLS should take, besides the 3 dp rule, why not introduce a Goalkeeper DP, making it 4 dps in total.
    That would really help MLS and if possible, actually make it 7 Dps. For example:
    1 Goalkeeper DP
    1 American DP like a Donovan or Dempsey.
    1 Elite DP spot, paid the most like a Messi
    1 an under 24 years of age DP
    3 normal DPs.
    This is the way MLS should work with their future DP rules but of course the cap has to increase.

    • If — and it’s a big if — I understand the DP rule correctly, this proposal would require a huge increase in the salary cap. DP salaries now count for around $387K for purposes of the cap. 7 x $387K = about $2.7 million. The current cap is $3.1 million.

    • Goal Keeper is not a possition in which MLS needs to invest DP money.
      1 US/Canadian DP slot, 1 Under 24 yr DP, 3 General DP spots would be more than sufficient to advance the on field product. The other changes needed have to do with the Minimum Salary and the Number of roster spots on a team. Raise the League Minimum to something in the ballpark of 75K per year and the number of roster spots to 30-35 players per team.
      The increase in base salary will allow teams to keep players quality players…the increased roster size will allow teams to compete in multiple compititions without fielding drastically inferior squads, increased DP’s will keep US/Can players in the league as well as improve the overall talent.

      • Not a bad idea of the 7 dps, its very interesting. So lets say you want to make your academy goalkeeper a DP then sell him to europe or make your best academy player a DP then sell him.
        Not only that, we gotta understand MLS will always be a league where players like Casillas, a Beckham or a Dempsey would like to come to MLS, to win and make good money.
        Also the elite DP sounds like a must for MLS, what if Miami gets Messi with the Elite Dp spot and Ronney, Chicharito,Tevez with the 3dp spots and has an amazing academy goal keeper and defender which are DPs and brings back Jozy as a American DP.
        Not bad at all, 3 american dps and 4 international dps. Sounds really interesting.

  2. Good ol’ Franz Beckenbauer. Such a German. But booting Barcelona and Espanyol from La Liga if Catalonia breaks away from Spain is absolutely huge, could legitimately keep the country together

    • I disagree. I really think it’s an empty threat – La Liga absolutely needs FC Barcelona. Also, Barca may be more than just a soccer club but the autonomy movement in Catalonia runs deeper than La Liga.

      • I agree with the fact that it’s likely an empty threat for the exact same reason, but I still hold my claim about soccer keeping the country together. Although I can’t say I’m knowledgeable about what’s going on in Catalonia, I read a really good book (Football Against the Enemy by Simon Kuper) on the connection between soccer and social and political movements, and this seems like a situation that fits with many of the ideas and situations presented in that book. Soccer runs deep in the blood of Spaniards and Catalonians, and if Catalonia were to break off from Spain, the one solid thing Catalonians could hold onto for hope and direction is their football club, and even an empty threat of taking that away has to be a very strong motivator for the Catalonian people. But again, I don’t know a lot about what’s going in Catalonian, and I myself am not Catalonian, so I could be totally wrong, but in light of all this I’m interested to see how it turns out

      • The reasoning behind booting Barcelona is because if Catalonia becomes independent, and not part of Spain, it then cannot be part of Spain’s La Liga.

        This is erroneous as FIFA already allows other nations to join a league in another country. The MLS is a good example where we allow 3 Canadian teams to play in a US League. Monaco, an independent State, is part of the Liga 1 in France and I do believe there is a team in Wellington, NZ that plays in the Australian A League. If that’s the best “bullying” that they can come up with, expect Catalonia to become independent. Besides, if FIFA punishes football federations when they become politicized, what about an official who uses the threat of FIFA’s intervention to influence with what is essentially a internal political dispute.

  3. I guess there is a movie out there, financed by FIFA, called United Passions, gloritying FIFA’s and Blatter’s ethics.

    The guy reviewing it said it was not the travesty the FIFA critics would hope for, but I have to think
    that is must see comedy.

    • oh, the movie FIFA spent $27m to get done and is doing TERRIBLY at the box office? the guy who reviewed it is apparently 1 of 10 people who have actually seen it.

  4. The classic “if there’s nothing to hide, then show us” goad…good to see it being used, but it won’t matter until it’s the WC sponsors that are the ones saying it.


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