"I left my beard and said if I score against Spain,
I'd leave it for the rest of the
Not even one week into the World Cup, Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo has already put his emphatic stamp on the tournament. While the most decorated footballer in the world has had his fair share of disappointments in past World Cups, he's off to a torrid start in 2018, netting four goals through his first two games--including a hattrick in the opening-match barnburner against rival Spain.
But this year, according to the man himself, he's relying on a bit of luck as well. Asked about his hot start following Portugal's 1-0 win over Morocco, where Ronaldo scored another goal within the first four minutes, he hinted that it might have something to do with his “new beard.” You'd be forgiven for not noticing. Apparently, CR7 has a teeny-tiny chin beard, and if you squint really hard, you might be able to make out its faint image.
Ronaldo, on the other hand, prefers to handle his barbering himself. “It was a joke I made with [his Portugal teammate Ricardo] Quaresma,” he explained in a postgame interview yesterday. “We were in the sauna, and I started to shave. I left my beard and said if I score tomorrow, which was against Spain, I'd leave it for the rest of the tournament. And it gave me luck, I scored in that game, I scored today and I'm going to keep it.”
FIFA FINES MEXICO
Mexican striker Javier Hernandez has appealed to his country's football fans to stop their homophobic chanting at World Cup matches, on a day when FIFA once again fined the Mexican football federation for their fans' misconduct.
FIFA slapped the Mexicans with a CHF 10,000 fine for what it called "discriminatory and insulting chants" during their surprise 1-0 win over Germany on Sunday.
Mexicans have long shouted a slang word for a male sex worker at games, which gay rights groups argue is homophobic.
The Mexican Football Federation (FMF) was sanctioned 12 times for homophobic chanting during the World Cup qualifying campaign, receiving warnings for the first two offences and fines for 10 more.
Hernandez posted a message on Instagram on Wednesday asking fans to end the derogatory chant that is usually shouted during their opponents' goal kicks.
"To all Mexican fans in the stadiums, don't shout 'Puto'," Hernandez said. "Let's not risk another sanction."
Although the Mexican team has appealed before for an end to the chants – the players even released a video on the subject in 2016 – some supporters have not relented.
PAKISTANI TEENAGER TO CONDUCT TOSS
A 15-year-old Pakistani will conduct the coin-toss for the match between Brazil and Costa Rica at the FIFA World Cup 2018 in Russia.
Ahmed Raza will conduct the coin toss for the match scheduled for today. The coin toss will take place at 5:45pm (BST).
Ahmed who hails from Sialkot is an ardent fan of Neymar Jr and the Brazilian football team.
Three generations of the teenager's family have been involved in crafting hand-stitched footballs for professional leagues, according to a press release.
Coca-Cola has collaborated with two-time Academy Award winning film-maker Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy to document Ahmed's journey from Sialkot to the FIFA World Cup stadium.
Pakistan's national football team (men) captain Kaleemullah will also be joining Ahmed on his journey to Moscow for the football tournament.