World Cup

David Villa is MVP in MLS

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It was quite a crown to cap the 2016 season for NYCFC and for David Villa in particular. David has won the World Cup, regional and club championships. He came to MLS two seasons ago at 33, still in his prime and hungry to succeed in a place where few foreign players have duplicated their success. Villa accomplished this with the winning of the MLS MVP Award in 2016.

Villa won over the city from the start through a tough first season with a team that was not much more than a glorified expansion franchise sprinked with two stars in Frank Lampard and Andrea Pirlo to go along with his. Though they rarely played together Villa still wanted to set the tone for this franchise in the heart of New York City.

“It’s the example I want to show to the people in America, in MLS, day by day,”

Villa explained.

It was a log-jam in the voting process as he contended with New York Red Bulls Bradley Wright-Phillips who led the league in goals and Sebastian Giovinco of Toronto FC, who ended Villa’s season in the first round. The media vote was even. But it was the fans who saw the silver linings.

It was there where he won the prize. Let’s see the numbers that mattered. Villa scored 23 goals, second most in MLS. He helped mentor young talents like Jack Harrison who flourished as a result. He carried the NYCFC to a second seed in the East and the first playoff appearance for a club who was only in it’s second season of existence. NYCFC Head Coach Patrick Vieira could see it as clearly as anyone in his rookie season on the sidelines.

“It was Villa’s effort on the field, and in so many other ways, that wound up impressing his peers in the MVP Voting.”

David Villa showed a relentless disposition that spoke straight to the people, resembling another man who in another election touched the pulse of America and now stands as President of the United States. The difference in David’s case is no one is asking for a recount.

David Villa, New York City FC Team Captain Recognized by LatinTRENDS as 2016 Trendsetter Award recipient.

David Villa, New York City FC Team Captain Recognized by LatinTRENDS as 2016 Trendsetter Award recipient.

The Fourteenth Annual Latino Trendsetter Awards, a landmark celebration of excellence in enterprise, arts, entertainment, health, education and community leadership, will be held at on Tuesday, May 10th, 2016 from 6-10 P.M. at The Symphony Space Theater in New York City.The event is sponsored in part by New York Presbyterian HospitalInca Kola and CUNY. Media (sweepstakes) partners are; La Mega 97.9 & Amor 93.1 and presented by LatinTRENDS.  It will commence with a VIP red carpet reception, attended by awardees, influencers and media.The award presentation will be partially open to the public and special guest and will start at 8PM.  It will feature a musical performances byFrankie Negron , a multi-cultural dance performance featuring tango, flamenco, salsa and bachata music. Emerging urban Tropical musician, Doñé, will perform live as well.

Actress, speaker and author, April Hernandez Castillo and Luxury Real Estate Broker and star of Bravo’s Emmy-Nominated Million Dollar Listing New York, Luis D. Ortiz will serve as host.

About David Villa

David Villa is a Spanish professional soccer who plays as a striker and also serves as captain for New York City FC in Major League Soccer. He is nicknamed El Guaje (The Kid in Austrian) because as a youngster he frequently played football with children much older than him.

Despite sustaining a serious injury as a child, Villa started his professional career with Sporting de Gijón. He moved to Real Zaragoza after two seasons, where he made his La Liga début, winning the Copa del Rey and Supercopa de España.

Villa made his international début for Spain in 2005. He has since participated in four major tournaments, becoming an integral member of the Spain teams that won Euro 2008 and the 2010 World Cup. He scored three goals at the 2006 World Cup, was the top scorer at Euro 2008 and earned the Silver Boot at the 2010 World Cup. He is the first Spanish player to ever reach 50 international goals and retired from internationals after the 2014 World Cup with 59 in 97 matches, making him Spain’s all-time top goalscorer as well as the country’s top scorer in the World Cup with 9 goals. The goals-to-games ratio he has achieved for the national team has not been matched by any player since Alfredo Di Stéfano.

 

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CAREER

2015: Scored a team leading 18 goals for New York City FC. Also had eight assists. Played 30 games and started in 29 of them. Led the team in shots and shots on goal. Was named New York City FC’s Eithad Airways Player of month for July. Named to the 2015 MLS All Star Game and also named New York City FC’s MVP

2014: After signing with New York City FC as the club’s first-ever player, was loaned to Melbourne City FC. Appeared in four games with the Australian side, scoring twice, including on his debut in the team’s A-League opener on Oct. 11.

2013: Joined Atlético Madrid in the summer. Alongside Diego Costa, fired the Rojiblancos to the Liga title and the UEFA Champions League final, where he played all 120 minutes of the 4-1 loss to Real Madrid. Scored 15 goals in 47 appearances for the club during the 2013-14 season.

2012: Returned with a vengeance, scoring 10 league goals (16 in all competitions), while helping Barcelona reclaim the league title.

2011: Missed the second half of the 2011-12 campaign recovering from a fractured left tibia sustained during the FIFA Club World Cup semifinal against Qatar’s al-Sadd Sports Club in Yokohama, Japan.

2010: Joined Barcelona in May, having scored 108 goals in 166 Liga matches during his five-year stint with Valencia. Scored 18 goals in 34 appearances as Barcelona retained the Liga title in 2010-11, and four in the UEFA Champions League, including one during the 3-1 victory against Manchester United FC in the Wembley final.

2008: Won the Copa del Rey with Valencia. Struck a career-best 28 Liga goals during the 2008-09 season.

2005: Transferred to Valencia CF in the summer. Made his league debut for the club coming on as a substitute against Real Betis in a 1–0 win on Aug. 27. Scored 25 goals in his first season with the team — one shy of Samuel Eto’o’s Pichichi-winning total.

2003: Signed with Real Zaragoza in the summer. Scored 17 goals while helping lead the club win the Copa del Rey. Scored in the 44th minute of the final against Real Madrid; a 3-2 overtime victory. Made 92 appearances for the club, netting on 41 occasions. His success earned him a call-up to the Spanish National Team.

2000: Made his first-team debut for Sporting Gijón. Scored 40 ties in 85 appearances for the club from 2001-03.

1999: Got his professional breakthrough with Sporting Gijón. Found the back of the net 25 times in 65 appearances for Sporting Gijón B.

INTERNATIONAL

First capped by Spain in Feb. 2005, he displaced Raúl from the side at the 2006 FIFA World Cup and justified that decision with three goals. Fared even better at UEFA Euro 2008, where he finished as the tournament’s top goal scorer with five as Spain took the title, though he missed the final through injury. Starred once again for Spain at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, scoring five of the team’s eight goals in their triumphant campaign. Overtook Raúl as La Roja’s all-time leading scorer when he struck his 45th international goal in a UEFA Euro 2012 qualifying win against Scotland in Glasgow. First Spanish player to reach 50 goals. Spain’s all-time leading scorer (59 goals in 97 appearances).

HONORS

Copa Del Rey (3): 2003-04, 2007-08, 2011-12

Supercopa de España (3): 2004, 2010, 2011

La Liga (3): 2010-11, 2012-13, 2013-14

UEFA Champions League (1): 2010-11

UEFA Super Cup (1): 2011

FIFA Club World Cup (1): 2011

UEFA European Championship (1): 2008

FIFA World Cup (1): 2010

INDIVIDUAL AWARDS

Spanish Player of the Year (1): 2005-06

Zarra Trophy (4): 2005-06, 2006-07, 2008-09, 2009-10

UEFA Euro Golden Boot (1): 2008

UEFA Euro Team of the Tournament (1): 2008

FIFA Confederations Cup Team of the Tournament (1): 2009

FIFA World Cup Silver Shoe (1): 2010

FIFA World Cup Bronze Ball (1): 2010

FIFA World Cup All-Star Team (1): 2010

USSA Male Athlete of the Year (1): 2010

FIFA/FIFPro World XI (1): 2010

UEFA Team of the Year (1): 2010

About LatinTRENDS


LatinTRENDS is a multi-media and marketing company that connects with the acculturated Hispanic community via its flagship monthly print magazine, weekly e-newsletter, daily content on LatinTRENDS.com and events. The brand’s content is bi-lingual, covering the latest trends in entertainment, travel, technology, wellness, business and cuisine, including featured Hispanic professionals & entrepreneurs.  Content also covers exclusive interviews with celebrities and innovative people that influence trends in pop culture.

For more information, see other winners and to purchase tickets (limited amount),clickhere: http://bit.ly/21fgLWf 

 

LIONEL MESSI RETURN SIGNALS BIG THINGS TO COME FOR BARCELONA

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If only Lionel Messi had either a World Cup or Copa America trophy in his hands to show how well he has really done the past two years in World Futbol. Then came the ligament tear on September 26th that was heard from Spain to Argentina.

It could have been the best of times as Messi led his National team to the World Cup Final for the first time in in 25 years before its close loss to Germany and the Copa America ambush in Chile where a penalty kick meltdown led to the hosts to the promised land.

But Europe has always been a place where Messi always excells and with players like Uruguay’s Luis Suarez and Brazil’s Neymar on your side, the possibilities are endless.

Barcelona is the team to watch in Europe as Messi made an impressive return to the pitch, scoring twice, against Roma, in a 6-1 shellacking while aiding the Spanish club to the top slot in Group E of the Champion’s League.

“We played a perfect game”

Suarez proclaimed.

To say Barcelona is hot is to understate the obvious. Just ask Real Madrid, who were crushed 5-0 last Saturday in league play by their eternal rivals.

“Right now Barca is unstoppable,”

admitted Roma coach Rudi Garcia.

Now that the big three are together again, Luis Enrique, Barcelona coach, is enjoying the return of arguably the best player in the world today as he added his 78th and 79th goals in Champions competition history. The only one deemed better is the man who holds the goal record with 83, Cristano Ronaldo.

“We are in a sweet moment and hope to keep it going as long as possible,”

Enrique explained.

Though its still early, with the return of Messi and the reunion of the big three, a focus and motivation throughout the unit not seen before, and its historical pedigree, Barcelona may just be the next club soccer dynasty.

PELE TURNS 75 TODAY

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The greatest soccer player in history, Pele, turned 75 years old and with it a reminder of the legacy he left United States soccer. After winning numerous championships for Santos of Brazil, his club team, and three World Cups for the Brazilian National team he came out of retirement to play for the New York Cosmos of the North American Soccer League.

Pele celebrates third World Cup title in Mexico 1970

Pele celebrates third World Cup title in Mexico 1970


 

His decision to come here ignited a fever for futbol that survived the death of the NASL in 1984 and the birth of MLS in 1996 and in between fostered a soccer culture here that has made the U.S a very relevant soccer nation. His former teammate Shep Messing in wishing Pele a Happy Birthday today expressed his and his teammates love for him.

“We all won this championship ring for you many years ago.”

Messing shared,

“We used to have shootouts together after practice and maybe at this age, now, I can finally beat you. But I doubt it.”

Shep smiled.

Pele is the ambassador of soccer today. He scored 1,283 goals but it was his way with people that lasted. The man who once stopped a civil war in Nigeria for 48 hours so he could play in a friendly there was a mark of his worldwide appeal.

 
The New York Cosmos return in 2013 to the now second division NASL was a return to glory as they captured the championship once more. They named him Honorary President. They have been able to lure stars like Marcos Senna and Raul to play here. But when the Cosmos are announced. Its Pele everyone remembers. Maybe the one word he repeated in his last professional game said it best.

“Say it three times with me, Love. Love. Love.”

What You Didn’t Know about Cristiano Ronaldo

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Considered the best football player in the world, Cristiano Ronaldo has also become one of the wealthiest too. But, it wasn’t always that way. He came from a modest upbringing from the small Portuguese archipelago of Madeira. Determined to pursue his dream of becoming the best football player, Ronaldo went to the mainland of Portugal without his family at the ripe age of 12 as his father, Jose Dinis Aveiro battled addiction with alcohol. Once on the mainland, Ronaldo and his young teammates were often ganged-up on by robbers. In one incident, as his fellow players ran away from the robbers, he stood up to the would-be thieves and fought back.

“A gang jumped on me and my team-mates in the street. The other players ran away but I stood up and fought – and the robbers didn’t get anything,” said Ronaldo.

In 2003, Ronaldo signed with Manchester United and wore the number seven jersey, which once belonged to former renowned players like Bryan Robson and David Beckham. In England, Ronaldo never forgot where he came from, or his family. He was close with his father and as a youth they would watch football games together. With his newfound wealth he tried to help Aveiro fight his addiction to alcohol by sending him to the best treatment centers, but in 2005 his father passed away before a match against Russia.  After getting the devastating news from his former coach in Portugal, Felipe Scolari and listening to Scolari’s story about losing his own father, Ronaldo went back on to the field and played the match against Russia, honoring his father the best way he knew how.

“He decided to play the match against Russia rather than fly back to Portugal immediately. I now think Ronaldo is not just the best player in the world, but the best person too,” said Scolari.

Earlier this year Ronaldo won his second FIFA Balloon d’Or in two years and the third for his career. Not one to get too comfortable, Ronaldo hopes to win more for years to come. Currently he plays for Real Madrid.

“I never thought I would win three Gold Balls. Fantastic. I want to win as many as possible. It’s hard, it’s very difficult to win. But everything is possible,” said Ronaldo.

Fun Facts:

  • His full name is Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro.
  • His middle name is “Ronaldo” because his dad was a fan of the actor Ronald Reagan, who later went on to become the 40th president of the United States.
  • Ronaldo was diagnosed with a racing heart at 15-years-old. After having laser surgery for the condition which could have ended his career he continued practicing football a few days later.
  • He doesn’t drink alcohol.
  • When recruiters from Sporting C.P. Youth and Academy were searching for new football players Ronaldo was up against his childhood friend, Albert Fantrau, in a game where whoever scored the best out of three will be accepted to its club. When they were head-to-head in points Fantrau had the ball for the last shot, but passed it to Ronaldo who he thought was more deserving of the prize. Ronaldo got the shot in and was accepted into the academy. After Ronaldo thanked his friend for his successful career, reporters seeked out the unemployed Fantrau, who by their surprise lived in a lavish home with a fancy car. When asked how he was able to afford his lifestyle, he said “it’s from Cristiano.”

By Naeisha Rose

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UNITED STATES POINTING ITS FINGER AT FIFA

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The news was not really that unexpected. This week six FIFA executives were arrested in Switerland. A few hours later in New York City, the Justice Department unwrapped a 47 count indictment targeting 14 defendents. The central case revolves around certain FIFA officials accepting bribes totaling in the neighborhood of 150 million. FIFA is the organization that runs World Soccer including the FIFA World Cup.

“It spans at least two generations of soccer officials who, as alleged, have abused their positions of trust to acquire millions of dollars in bribes and kickbacks.”

stated Attorney General Loretta Lynch.

The brunt of the action has focused on defendents from North and South America (CONCACAF and CONMEBOL.) This has re-fueled the fire of suspicion around the awarding of the 2022 World Cup to Qatar to vote buying. The loser from that was the United States, who was pursuing hosting rights for that cup. Included in the group being accused is Charles Blazer, a former FIFA executive.

The interesting thing about the investigation is that its current President, Joseph “Sepp’ Blater, who was just elected to his fifth straight term as President, is treating the seriousness of the allegations with apathy and arrogance.

“We will continue to work with the relevant authorities…to root out any misconduct.”

This implies that FIFA leadership is not taking this seriously. But maybe they should be. Corporate sponsors are hedging about renewing contracts. Visa, Inc. is demanding changes or risk losing them in 2022. Adidas, McDonald’s, and Coca-Cola have expressed concern. Coca-Cola responded by saying that this scandal

“has tarnished the mission and ideals of the FIFA World Cup.”

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I’m Livin’ La Vida Loca for Ricky!

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Ricky Martin
been considered to be one of the Latin music industry’s hottest commodities. The obligations of Martin as a father to twins, Matteo and Valentino, his busy work schedule, I don’t see when he has the time to become available for himself.

When he is free he loves to be at peace. In a tranquil atmosphere and partaking in exclusive beauty treatment. Enduring a deep pampering with a facial mask, and a purification moisturizer on his lips and hands are just a few of his masculine routines Ricky embarks in to please not only himself but his fans.

What can we say about Ricky. His debonair facial expressions and piercing eyes are just the beginning of what we begin to fantasize about seeing him on stage. Can you relive in your mind his sexiness at the World Cup? Can you feel the sweat? I don’t care if its sweat, its Ricky’s! Every choreographed step whether ‘PG’ or ‘R’ made me want to be on stage so he can sing to me ‘She Bangs‘ after the world cup that is.

From his stardom in Menudo, Ricky has always had this aura that made him stand out from the rest of the talented artists in the group. Whether it was his vocals or the way he would caress his hair when it would go into his eyes, his touch became magnetic. His successful career as an entertainer, ambassador, entrepreneur, actor and also being a devoted father is truly commendable and his look is scrumptious to his fans.

Although it remains to be seen whether all his desired wishes came true for Ricky; to have the body of a Greek God and face of an angel, I can testify that his spectacular silhouette is something I think even his shadow will envy.

5 Reasons (Besides The World Cup) You Should Visit Chile

As you probably know by now, Brazil and Chile are head to head in today’s World Cup match. If you’re a traveler, chances are the two are in a tough match in your head , too. While there are plenty of reasons to visit Brazil, Chile has a few gems of its own. We’ve selected five Chilean landmarks that will make you want to stop watching the game and actually visit the country.

1. Valle De Luna: Its large dunes and sand formations resemble the moon. Hence the name, which translates to “Valley of the Moon”

Valle De Luna (Image via Flickr)

Valle De Luna (Image via Flickr)


2. Lauca National Park: Located in the Andean range, it is one of the top tourist attractions.
Lauca National Park (Image Via Flickr)

Lauca National Park (Image Via Flickr)


3. San Rafael Glacier: Located within the Laguna San Rafael National Park, it is a breathtaking sight to witness by boat.
San Rafael Glacier (Image via Flickr)

San Rafael Glacier (Image via Flickr)


4. Cerro San Cristóbal: It lends itself for a beautiful view of the city.
Cerro San Cristóbal (Image via Flickr)

Cerro San Cristóbal (Image via Flickr)


5. Easter Island: Located approximately halfway to Tahiti, it offers wonderful diving, surfing, sand beaches and two volcanic craters.
Easter Island (Image via Flickr)

Easter Island (Image via Flickr)

When will you be traveling to Chile?

10–Step Guide to Understanding The World Cup for The Rest of Us!

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America has taken a slower, not as interested approach to soccer but in the last decade or so it has joined the rest of the planet—especially more now as World Cup is here and America has been gaining steam and respect.

Here’s your chance to get-up-to-speed on the world’s most watched sports competition.

There are nine-Spanish speaking countries in the World Cup. It’s the alpha-maie of top-class sport played at the very highest level. There’s no other event that produces such a packed schedule of encapsulating action.

If you’ve never watched the finals before or never been that into soccer, it’s easy to get pulled in especially if your country is playing with friends and family going crazy (I mean crazy as in loco/a) over their teams gooooooooooooooooooooooals!

David-Villa

But fear not, there’s still time to unashamedly jump on the World Cup bandwagon. Here are all the basic things to know about the World Cup to get you up to speed with the tournament format so you can enjoy the rest 2014 World Cup in Brazil to its full capacity.

 

1. The World Cup is the pinnacle of soccer

2. FIFA stands for: Fédération Internationale of Football (soccer) Association.

3. World Cup takes place every four years.

4. 32 national teams compete in a tournament held in one country over the course of about a month, with billions of people watching worldwide.

5. But in between each of these tournaments, there are hundreds of qualifying matches that win now the field down from 209 national teams to the 32 that make the final tournament.

6. The World Cup finals are a multi-stage tournament

7. The Group Stage: The World Cup is comprised of eight groups, each containing four teams. Typically, the hosts open the tournament with the first game, but occasionally the holders can kick things off. In the group, each team plays the other one time. A win will get you three points, a draw will get you one and naturally a defeat will get you zero. The top two teams from each group will qualify for the second round.

If two teams are tied on points, the side with the superior goal difference—the number of goals scored subtracted by the number of goals conceded—will progress.

The final two fixtures in the group stage are played at the same time, meaning that we can get some pretty dramatic moments as sides battle to make it to the last 16.

8. The Knockout Stage: The knockout format will see a team that finishes top of their group play a team that has finished second in theirs. So for example, the winner of Group A will player the runner-up in Group B, whilst the winner of Group B will play the runner-up of Group A.

 

Here’s the full tournament bracket for this year’s competition to provide you with a better understanding of how this works:

Chart

 

Aside from that, it’s all pretty self-explanatory. If you win you go through, if you lose you go home. Win four knockout games in a row, and you’re the world champions.

At this point, winning is all that matters; in the 2010 tournament, Spain won all of their knockout games 1-0 on the way to the World Cup final. They eventually won the trophy after another 1-10 win, but that was extra-time.

9. Extra-Time: If a knockout game is tied after 90 minutes, then the game will go to extra time. That involves 30 extra minutes where a winner can be decided. If a team is leading at the end of extra time, then they’ll progress.

With players jaded and managers often throwing caution to the wind, the game can be without rhythm or pattern. And that typically gives way to some extraordinary spells of soccer.

In the 2006 semi-final, Italy scored two late goals in a frantic extra 30-minute spell.

10. Penalties: If the scores are level after 120 minutes of action, the game goes to a penalty shootout to determine who progresses to the next round, or if the final is level after 120 minutes, to decide who lifts the trophy.

 

The shootout sees each team take five penalty kicks and whoever has scored the most at the end of the five kicks go through. If the score is level after five kicks, it goes to sudden death, where each team gets an extra kick. If one team scores, then other misses—or vice-versa—the team that scores will go through.

The World Cup final has only ever been decided on penalties twice, both times involving the Italian national team.

McDonald’s New York Tri-State Area Promotes and Supports the Practice of Soccer among Children

 

Claudio Reyna Check Presentation

 

This past weekend, McDonald’s New York Tri-State area restaurants gave 100 young soccer enthusiasts and their families an experience they’ll never forget at a soccer clinic at the Indoor Sports Pavilion in Randolph, New Jersey. During the event, 100 local children aged 6 to 10 practiced their favorite sport and received tips from soccer professionals. All participants received three tickets to attended the USA vs Turkey soccer match the next day at the Red Bull Arena.

As part of McDonald’s ongoing commitment to the communities where they do business, Ana Madan and Celeste Quintana, local McDonald’s owners, made a $5,000 donation to the Claudio Reyna Foundation, which promotes an active lifestyle and education through soccer among the children in our region. Josh Morgan and former USA World Cup soccer player, Jimmy Conrad, representing the Claudio Reyna Foundation also attended the event.

 

Nutrionist McD Soccer Clinic

 

In addition at the soccer clinic, McDonald’s conducted a series of workshops for the attendees led by certified nutritionist Sandra Arévalo, who provided some helpful tips for healthy living, including how to mix and match different McDonald’s menu options. For instance, Happy Meal choices such as the apple slices, the low fat milk, or the upcoming arrival of, Strawberry Go-Gurt (low fat yogurt) available in restaurants beginning next month.

Twenty-two of the children who participated in the soccer clinic were selected to be part of the McDonald’s Player Escort program during the USA vs Turkey match that took place the following day (Sunday, June 1). The Player Escorts had the chance to walk hand in hand with the biggest soccer figures from the United States and Turkey, as they entered to the soccer field at the Red Bull Arena in Harrison, NJ.

 

To learn more about the nutritional value of McDonald’s menu and how to pair them the best, visit www.sabiasquemcdny.com

McDonald’s USA Give Kids Chance to Join Soccer Heroes at FIFA World Cup

Player Escort program gives 25 children in U.S. once-in-a-lifetime trip to Brazil, grants to benefit local youth soccer organizations

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McDonald’s USA is giving young soccer enthusiasts the opportunity to meet their soccer heroes competing for the 2014 FIFA World Cup™ trophy in Brazil this summer and also secure a $1,000 grant for a local soccer organization of choice.

McDonald’s Player Escort sweepstakes gives 25 children ages 6 to 10 the chance to travel to Brazil and walk hand-in-hand with some of the world’s best soccer players as they take the field for a 2014 FIFA World Cup™ match. Each Player Escort, along with a parent or guardian, will embark on a four-night, five-day trip to Brazil, with the first stop in Rio de Janeiro.

The 25 McDonald’s Player Escorts will lead players onto the pitch in one of four match cities – Rio de Janeiro, Natal, Manaus or Recife. Parents or guardians can visit www.McdOneGoal.com between now and April 6 to enter the sweepstakes.

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We know how much soccer has grown in the U.S., especially among young kids – in fact, 30 percent of American households have at least one soccer player* – and many of these kids view U.S. Soccer players as role models,” said Dean Barrett, senior vice president, global relationship officer, McDonald’s Corporation. “Our Player Escort program aims to fuel kids’ passion for the game and inspire active play, while also giving twenty-five lucky U.S. winners an unforgettable experience with players.

McDonald’s is continuing its partnership with U.S. Soccer for this year’s Player Escort program to motivate young athletes and help increase the popularity of soccer in America.

McDonald’s has been a great partner and an active supporter of soccer at all levels for many years,” said Sunil Gualti, president, U.S. Soccer. “Through our partnership, we have strengthened the soccer community at the grassroots level by hosting youth soccer clinics and enhanced the fan experience for supporters of both the Men’s and Women’s National Teams. McDonald’s continued support and gift of grants to youth organizations will help us further our goal of growing the game in the U.S.”

Globally and locally, McDonald’s will select 1,408 children from 70 countries including Brazil to serve as Player Escorts and support their country’s players during the month-long competition, which starts June 12 and culminates with the final match on July 13. During their time in Brazil, Player Escorts and their parent or guardian will experience the thrilling atmosphere of the FIFA World Cup™ and the lively surrounding culture.

McDonald’s Player Escort program began in 2002 at the FIFA World Cup Korea/Japan™. Since that time, McDonald’s has given more than 6,000 children from around the world the chance to lead a player onto the field. Additionally, McDonald’s has been a supporter of soccer at both the global and grassroots levels for more than 25 years. The Company has served as an Official Sponsor and the Official Restaurant of the FIFA World Cup™ since the United States Tournament in 1994, continuing for each FIFA World Cup™ through to the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™.

Enrique Iglesias: NAKED IN MIAMI?!

Though he says he won’t get around to touring before the end of the year, if you’re in Miami, you might get an even better kind of show from Enrique Iglesias this summer.

He told People that he plans to keep his World Cup promise that he would water ski naked if Spain won. And it could be sooner than we think. According to him,  “I’m just waiting for a day off. A bet’s a bet.” Will someone get this boy a day off?

According to him, he plans to do it in the Biscayne Bay at night to avoid getting caught. Though apparently, he used to do it in high school all the time and never got in trouble. Why no one ever alerted me to this before, I’ll never know.

Possible arrests don’t seem to phase him, but sharks do. The sexy singer said, “The only thing I’m worried about is if you fall at night, there’s sharks in the water.” And aside from his safety, Iglesias is also conscious of his grooming: “I need to get my Brazilian wax before I do it.”

We can’t wait. Remember, Enrique: pics or it didn’t happen!