FIFA.com’s latest statistical review focuses on two female keepers at the opposite ends of age spectrum, an in-form Ivorian, the most expensive coach in history, Brazil’s continental domination, another Spanish triumph, and the worsening woes of an Argentinian institution.
consecutive years of top-flight football was the run that came to a historic end for River Plate on Sunday. The Buenos Aires giants were relegated for the first time after a 1-1 draw against Belgrano extended their winless streak to nine matches and sealed a 3-1 aggregate defeat in the Promoción play-off. Los Millonarios are the third member of Argentina’s traditional ‘big five’ to slip into the second tier, with Boca Juniors and Independiente the only 'equipos grande' still to avoid a fate that also befell San Lorenzo and Racing Club during the 1980s.
years and 251 days was the age at which Mexico's Cecilia Santiago became the youngest-ever goalkeeper to play at the FIFA Women’s World Cup™, breaking a record previously held by Nigeria's Ann Chiejine (17 years, 292 days). She might have fallen short of becoming the tournament's youngest-ever player – a title which belongs to Nigeria midfielder Ifeanyi Chiejine (16 years, 33 days) – but Santiago, a star of last year’s FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup, impressed on her return to German soil in the 1-1 draw with England. At the other end of the age spectrum, Jenny Bindon became the competition's oldest goalkeeper and second-oldest player by turning out against Japan at the age of 38 years and 122 days, leaving her younger only than former Brazil stalwart Meg, who played in 1995 aged 39 years and 155 days. Germany 2011 itself may only be a few days old, but it is already shaping up to be a massive success, with a crowd of 73,680 – and a record German TV audience of 18 million – watching the hosts’ opening 2-1 win over Canada.
million euros was the fee paid to release Andre Villas-Boas from his Porto contract, making Chelsea’s new boss the most expensive coach in history. What the Londoners have bought is a man who, at 33 years and 213 days old, became the youngest coach to win a European trophy last month, and who will be the youngest operating in the Premier League next season. Villas-Boas will be hard pushed to emulate his record with Porto, who ended last season with four major trophies, a record number of league points (84) and European wins (14), having lost just one away game in all competitions last season and gone through their entire championship-winning campaign without tasting defeat.
goals in three Group F matches have enabled Souleymane Coulibaly to set a new FIFA U-17 World Cup record. No-one had ever scored this many goals in the tournament’s first phase, with the Côte d’Ivoire striker’s impressive haul eclipsing the seven accrued by both Florent Sinama Pongolle and David during the group stages of the 2001 and 1997 editions. David also saw Coulibaly claim a share in another of his records, with the Ivorian joining his Spanish predecessor as one of only three players in the competition’s history – the other being Colombia’s Carlos Hidalgo – to have scored four goals in a single match. The 16-year-old Elephants star, who is responsible for all eight of his team’s goals, is already five clear of his nearest challengers for the adidas Golden Shoe, and needs just one more to equal Sinama Pongolle’s overall U-17 record of nine. Coulibaly hasn’t been the only Mexico 2011 goalscorer making headlines though. On Thursday, Canada’s Quillan Roberts became the first goalkeeper to score at an 11-a-side FIFA tournament, his landmark 87th-minute equaliser against England earning the Canucks’ first-ever point at a FIFA U-17 World Cup.
of the last seven Copa Libertadores titles have gone to Brazil after Santos ensured that South America’s most coveted club trophy would be staying within their nation’s borders. It is the variety of Brazilian contenders and winners that is most striking, with seven of its clubs represented in the last seven finals, and 11 winning the tournament since its inception. As for beaten finalists Penarol, there was the added indignity of becoming the Copa Libertadores’ record runners-up, as they finished in the role of bridesmaids for a fifth time.
trophies – the FIFA World Cup™, UEFA European Championship and UEFA U-21 European Championship – are currently in Spain’s possession, making for an unprecedented collection. Prior to Saturday, no nation had ever held all three at the same time, and in helping their country rewrite history at UEFA's U-21 finals, two of the Spanish players also achieved another impressive first. While the likes of Laurent Blanc, Rudi Voller and Fabio Cannavaro all went on to become world champions after winning the U-21 European Championship, no-one had ever managed this feat in reverse order. No-one until South Africa 2010 winners Juan Mata and Javi Martinez, that is. The U-21 title they helped secure was their nation’s third, establishing Spain as the tournament’s second-most successful team behind five-time winners Italy.