Sports Burst - Barca's Parallel Universe



Messi and Ronaldo on the same team? Joan Laporta might be thinking the unthinkable  


While Lionel Messi was plodding through a 1-0 win over Paraguay on Monday night in the dramatic Copa America battle to whittle ten teams down to eight for the knockout stages, the Argentinian ace might have been turning over a story coming out of Spain. 


It is a particularly insane story by normal transfer rumor standards, even if the concept is grounded as little as one percent in reality. The rumor out of AS, is that Barcelona president, Joan Laporta, wants to unite Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo in the same team next season. And not a virtual team on his computer. Or at PSG, which could be the outcome if he's not careful. Nope, Barcelona. 

This cunning plan comes even though Barcelona have just added two forwards to the roster - Sergio Aguero and Memphis Depay to rub alongside Messi, Antoine Griezmann, Ansu Fati, Ousmane Dembele, Pedri, Trincao, Philippe Coutinho and Martin Braithwaite. 

Not to mention the fact that Barcelona have crippling debt and have just received a warning from LaLiga president, Javier Tebas, over its finances. "Barcelona have exceeded their wage cap," noted Tebas, "I hope they can keep Messi, but to do so, they will have to make cuts elsewhere."


Those cuts would reportedly be giving two players to Juventus in return for Ronaldo, and then using their saved salaries to pay for CR7's wages - which Sports Burst imagines will need to be at least identical to Messi's for any of this work. Considering that Barca currently can't afford to pay for Messi's new contract demands that could be tricky. 

That's not even mentioning the battle of egos - would they even want to play alongside each other - Messi v Ronaldo internet fan wars, and poor Ronald Koeman trying to make it work on the pitch. 



Denmark boosted by emotional win 


One of the good news stories of the year in soccer might have come with Denmark's dramatic win over Russia on Monday to put the team into the next round of Euro 2020, a much needed morale-boost after the emotional turmoil of Christian Eriksen's collapse and hospitalization. 


Not sure the action is going to be so heady in today's Group D finale which is what the Euro's are serving up. The top two teams, Czech Republic and England, are playing each other but both have already qualified for the next round. It's a case of whether it will be in first, second or third. England will probably want to go for the win to finish top and avoid the inconvenience of having to pack and move to Copenhagen for the next match, away from home turf at Wembley. 



Supreme Court declares NCAA business model as "flatly illegal"


Tuesday in the US of A will see for some contemplation on two ground-breaking moments in the history of North American sport which happened on Monday. 

The first was the US Supreme Court ruling in a unanimous verdict that the NCAA failing to compensate its athletes while making billions in profit is outrageously illegal. It took a while, but we got there in the end. "The NCAA's business model would be flatly illegal in almost any other industry in America" said Justice Brett Kavanaugh on an organization that made nearly $19 billion in 2019. 


The other moment of big news, although it really shouldn't be, was Carl Nassib, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end, becoming the first active NFL player to come out as gay. "I actually hope that like one day, videos like this and the whole coming-out process are just not necessary," said Nassib on an Instagram post. 

Nassib also announced that he would be donating $100,000 to the Trevor Project, which provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to the LGBTQ+ community.