David Beckham granted MLS franchise in Miami

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David Beckham’s long wait for a Major League soccer franchise in Miami is over.

MLS commissioner Don Garber announced on Monday that Miami would become the league’s 24th city, awarding the franchise to a group headed by Beckham, but also including his manager Simon Fuller and businessmen Marcelo Claure, Masayoshi Sun, and Jorge and Jose Mas.

Beckham has been working on bringing a team to Miami for several years, and admitted during Monday’s announcement there were times when he thought the idea might not work.

“It was difficult at times,” he said. “There were times when we sat back and said, ‘This is not going to happen, this dream is not going to happen’. It was too difficult, there were too many bumps in the road, but I don’t give up.”

The possibility of owning a franchise was part of Beckham’s move to the Los Angeles Galaxy from Real Madrid in 2007, with Beckham keen to get in on the ground floor of a league which has almost doubled in size since then when measured by the numbers of teams.

“I joined the Galaxy in 2007 because I realised the long-term potential of this league,” the 42-year-old said.

“I moved from Real Madrid, as you know a pretty big team, to come to a league not fully established.

“That was a big move, one that I always knew was going to be a challenge, an interesting, exciting challenge and I want to thank commissioner Garber because he came to me and say down and explained the plan of this league and where he wanted to take it. I was in. I was in from day one…

“People say this is a city that is built on dreams. Today you made my dream come true.”

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Real Madrid sweep Globe Soccer Awards as Ronaldo, Zidane win

Sport360 staff 29/12/2017

Cristiano Ronaldo capped off a golden year on Thursday night, winning his fourth Dubai Globe Soccer Awards Player of the Year Award in a glittering ceremony at Madinat Jumeirah Dubai.

And in a Real Madrid hat-trick, the team also collected the Club of the Year Award while coach Zinedine Zidane was named Coach of the Year.

Ronaldo, who for the fifth time running was the top scorer in the Champions League and finished the year with another title after scoring the winning goal in the FIFA Club World Cup in Abu Dhabi, triumphed over a stellar field.

The Portuguese beat several big names to the award including rival and Barcelona star Lionel Messi and the heir apparent for the title of the world’s best player, Brazil and Paris Saint Germain star Neymar.

Gianluigi Buffon, Paulo Dybala, Sergio Ramos and Kylian Mbappe were also among the nominees.

Ronaldo was unable to attend the gala, but sent his message of thanks over a live video link.

With Real Madrid taking Club of the Year it was no real surprise then that the man who has steered them to so many titles would win Coach of the Year. Zidane picked up his first Dubai Globe Soccer Awards title, having picked up the FIFA Best Men’s Coach Award in October.

In his first two seasons as manager, Zidane won the Champions League twice, a La Liga title, a Supercopa de España title, the UEFA Super Cup twice and FIFA Club World Cup twice.

Zidane was selected for the Award ahead of Chelsea’s Antonio Conte, Manchester United’s José Mourinho and Massimiliano Allegri of Juventus.

What did you make of the awards night?

Share with us your thoughts by commenting below, using #360fans on Twitter or getting in touch via Facebook.

Winners of the 2016 Globe Soccer Awards are:

Best Player of the year: CRISTIANO RONALDO

Best Club of the year: REAL MADRID

Coach Career Award: MARCELLO LIPPI

Best Coach of the year: ZINEDINE ZIDANE

Best Referee of the year: FELIX BRYCH

Best Agent of the year: JORGE MENDES

Master Coach Special Award: DIEGO SIMEONE

Sport Business Award: FERRAN SORIANO

Kooora Best Arab National Team of the year: SAUDI ARABIA

Kooora Best Arab National Team Coach of the year: HECTOR CUPER (EGYPT)

Player Career Award: FRANCESCO TOTTI / CARLES PUYOL

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FIFA President Infantino delivers closing speech at Dubai International Sports Conference

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The FIFA President delivered the closing speech at the conference.

The 12th Dubai International Sports Conference drew to a close on Thursday with a speech by FIFA President Gianni Infantino.

The Conference again brought together an exceptional group of influential and innovative professionals in all areas of world football, to share their expertise and experience during two days of workshops and presentations.

In the closing session Infantino addressed the packed ballroom at Madinat Jumeriah and outlined FIFA’s approach to the conference theme of Modern Investment in Football. In outlining FIFA’s approach, Infantino said: “There are many stakeholders and points of views and our task and ambition must be to bring together all the different interests in a way that protects football – the game we love.

“FIFA’s approach to investment covers five major areas – investment in image; investment in fans; protection of the game; corporate social responsibility and the future of football.

Infantino added: “2018 will be FIFA’s year of digital revolution as we develop a worldwide digital future to engage and interact with fans. Technology is part of our future, and I am positive the VAR will be a great introduction to football.

The panel discussed the impact of technology on football development.

The panel discussed the impact of technology on football development.

“The FIFA Foundation has also been established to deal with requests for help and assistance from around the world. We will also be introducing a new format for youth competitions from next year, and will be developing a FIFA Women’s World League. We will also create a new Club World Cup so all confederations and leagues all over the world develop at the same rate.

“The most important thing is that we focus on football and protect the game.”

At the conclusion of his speech, Infantino was presented with a gift by HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of the UAE Olympic Committee.

In earlier sessions Marcello Lippi – Coach of China, joined Chairman of the FIFA Referees Committee Pierluigi Collina, and top international referee Felix Brych to discuss Football Development and the Impact of Technology.

Collina said: “The target (of VAR) is to protect the referees by avoiding mistakes which affect the outcome of the match. The referee will always be the final decision maker and should be supported. The interpretation must still be his.

Ismael Matar Carlos Puyol, Mustafa Agha and Francesco Totti.

Ismael Matar, Carlos Puyol, Mustafa Agha and Francesco Totti.

Legendary players Francesco Totti and Carles Puyol, along with one of the UAE’s best players Ismail Matar, then discussed Investment Strategies for Players – During and Post Career, before Infantino addressed the delegates.

The Conference is held under the umbrella of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives, and is organised by Dubai Sports Council under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and President of the Dubai Sports Council. The Conference was established to bring together the leaders in all areas of football to share their knowledge and ideas.

And in a fitting conclusion to the Conference, the prestigious and highly anticipated Dubai Globe Soccer Awards will be staged on Thursday evening, December 28, recognising the best performances of the season from players, coaches and administrators.

The Awards will this year will be presented in 13 categories. The nominees have been selected by the Globe Soccer Jury of international footballing coaches, directors and chairmen.

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