Deco: the understated master of his time

“I am not attracted to straight angles or to the straight line, hard and inflexible … I am attracted to free-flowing, sensual curves.” By the time he passed away in 2012, Oscar Niemeyer was one of the greatest architects in world history. The Brazilian’s unique designs, informed by his abhorrence for all things bleak and uniform,…

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Vítor Oliveira: Portugal’s undisputed king of promotions

Having held 22 separate managerial positions across 17 different Portuguese football clubs throughout his long and continuing career as a manager, Vítor Manuel Oliveira has proven himself to have an extraordinary and irrepressible nomadic streak. Impressive as his commitment to his peripatetic tendencies is, though, the 63-year-old is known throughout his country for far more…

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The curious case of Portuguese sensation Dani

Portuguese, devilishly handsome, full of himself and self-centred. A product of the Sporting Clube de Portugal academy, fond of a step-over or two and a footballer who made his name in the Premier League. There the comparisons end, for we are not talking about Cristiano Ronaldo. In 1996, some seven years before the multiple Ballon d’Or…

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The Battle of Nuremberg at World Cup 2006

On any occasion that a player’s participation in a major tournament is cut short courtesy of an accumulation of yellows, the empathetic aftermath often unites the watching world in a way unlike most footballing matters. The repeat offender, painfully aware that should his team progress he shall be relegated to the role of spectator by…

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