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Mario Balotelli abuser banned from European sporting events for five years

Gab Marcotti doesn't hold back when looking at how Verona handled racist chants directed at Mario Balotelli.

A Sicilian man was banned from European sports events for five years on Thursday for directing racist chants at Brescia striker Mario Balotelli.

Verona police issued the ruling after reviewing evidence from the Hellas Verona-Brescia game on Nov. 3.

The 38-year-old man was also barred from frequenting areas that fans pass through on match days.

Balotelli angrily kicked a ball high into the stands and threatened to leave the field because of the racist chants directed at him during the game in Verona,...

Italy, Roma great De Rossi retires after Boca Juniors stint at 36

Daniele De Rossi, Boca Juniors
Daniele De Rossi will retire from football after a season with Boca Juniors.

World Cup winner Daniele De Rossi on Monday confirmed he will retire from football at the age of 36.

De Rossi, who spent 18 years with boyhood club Roma after making his debut in 2001, left for Boca Juniors in July 2019 and helped the Argentine club reach the Copa Libertadores semifinals.

Despite having signed a one-year contract, after returning to Argentina following a Christmas break in Rome, the midfielder reported back for his medicals but left the training ground and decided he would...

Real Madrid's Zidane discovers what being headbutted feels like in meeting with Almeria president

Julien Laurens is given the tough task of choosing whether Real Madrid or Barcelona should be considered La Liga favourites.
Steve Nicol questions why Toni Kroos would choose to leave Real Madrid for Manchester United.
ESPN FC's Steve Nicol says the allure of Real Madrid may be enough to lure Sadio Mane away from Liverpool.

Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane got a taste of his own medicine when he was on the receiving end of a headbutt like the one he delivered to Marco Materazzi in 2006...

The Toe Poke Daily is here every day to bring you all the weirdest stories, quirkiest viral content and top trolling that the internet has to offer, all in one place.

Jump to: Alex Morgan doesn't let baby bump stop her training

As far as Spanish football club owners go, UD Almeria president Turki Al-Sheikh is proving he's a little...

Euro 2020 draw: Who are the favourites, who are the no-hopers?

See where Cristiano Ronaldo's strike lands on the top goals from the latest Euro qualifiers.
Shaka Hislop goes international this week and dishes his Euro 2020 power rankings.
How will Real Madrid and their fans react to Gareth Bale's dig at the club after Wales' Euro qualifying victory?

The draw for the 2020 European Championship finals is on Saturday (watch live on ESPNEWS and ESPN3 from noon ET in the U.S.). There are 20 teams who have secured their place in the draw, with another four spots yet to be decided via playoffs.

Here we look at the contenders, outsiders, wild cards and no-hopers for next summer's continent-spanning tournament, which will be broadcast live across ESPN networks from June 12-July 12.

Contenders

Much like in 2000, you could make an argument that world...