Barcelona defender Gerard Pique (left) celebrates his goal against Apoel Nicosia with Brazilian Neymar da Silva   at Camp Nou. Photograph: Toni Albir / EPA

Barcelona 1 Apoel Nicosia 0Barcelona won their opening Champions League game but that was no more than could be expected. Indeed, it was less than mos(...)

Atletico Madrid’s Arda Turan (centre) celebrates scoring the winning goal in the La Liga game against Real Madrid at the  Bernabeu  with team-mates Tiago (left) and Raul Garcia. Photograph: Juan Medina/Reuters

Spanish football round-up: Real Madrid’s early-season woes deepened when they lost 2-1 at home to La Liga champions Atletico Madrid on Saturday, while(...)

Germany’s Jerome Boateng clashes with Steven Naismith of Scotland during the Euro 2016 qualifier between Germany and Scotland in Dortmund. Photograph: Simon Hofmann/Bongarts/Getty Images

Three minutes into the second half of last Sunday night’s game in Dortmund, Steven Naismith feinted his way past two German defenders, maintained his (...)

 Angel Di Maria scores Argentina’s fourth goal in the friendly international against Germany  in Düsseldorf. Photograph: Kai Pfaffenbach/Reuters

Germany 2 Argentina 4A brilliant performance from new Manchester United signing Angel Di Maria spurred Argentina to a crushing friendly win over world(...)

Burnley host Chelsea in a Division One game  from Turf Moor, Burnley circa 1965. The club have been playing on this piece of land since February 1883. Photograph: Bob Thomas/Getty

Angel Di Maria’s last appearance for Real Madrid came in the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup against neighbours Atletico almost a fortnight ago. Th(...)

Barcelona’s Lionel Messi controls the ball during the Spanish first division soccer match against Elche at Nou Camp stadium. Photograph: Gustau Nacarino/Reuters

Lionel Messi wasted little time in finding his stride as he struck twice to lead 10-man Barcelona to a 3-0 victory over Elche and hand new coach Luis (...)

Older African members of the Aspire Football Dreams program watch as younger players played the visiting FC Barcelona youth team, in Doha, Qatar, on January 27th, 2014. Photograph: Bryan Denton/The New York Times

A little more than a decade ago, Andreas Bleicher, then a director of one of Germany’s Olympic training centres, arrived in the tiny Persian Gulf nat(...)

Thomas Vermaelen, Luis Suarez and Sergio Busquets  share a joke during the official presentation of the FC Barcelona prior to the Joan Gamper Trophy match between FC Barcelona and Club Leon at Camp Nou. Photograph: David Ramos/Getty Images

“And now, please give a huge ovation for . . .” A month after Luis Suarez signed for FC Barcelona and two months before he can play a competitive game(...)

Chelsea’s Diego Costa celebrates scoring his side’s first goal  during a pre-season friendly at Stamford Bridge The club are pinning their Premier League title hopes hopes on  the former Atletico Madrid man hitting  the back of the net regularl in the season ahead. Photograph: Andrew Matthews/PA

Given a ball has not been kicked and around 500 players are yet to appear in any of the 380 Premier League matches that will unfold across the next 10(...)

Southampton’s €15m offer for Shane Long was too good for  Hull City to refuse.  Photograph:  Jan Kruger/Getty Images

Republic of Ireland striker Shane Long has completed his move to Southampton from Hull City and signed a four-year deal with the Saints. The Tipperary(...)