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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Venezuela striker Josef Martinez joins Atlanta United as designated player

Josef Martinez has moved to MLS to join Atlanta United.

Atlanta United signed forward Josef Martinez on loan from Serie A side Torino on Thursday and made him the club's third designated player.

The deal includes an option for the new MLS club to sign the 23-year-old permanently. He joins Hector Villalba and Miguel Almiron as DPs in Atlanta.

Martinez has played for Torino for the past three seasons, scoring 13 goals in 76 league appearances.

Brian McBride picks his early favourites to win the MLS Eastern and Western conferences for the 2017 season.

"I'm very happy to be here, this is a great project," Martinez said in a statement. "I was able to see the training...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

FIFA gives Chile and Romania stadium bans, fines many Latin American FAs

Poland's Robert Lewandowski was caught in the explosion of fireworks in a game at Romania last month.

Chile and Romania have received stadium bans from FIFA, as the world governing body issued fines to a number of national football associations on Monday, including many for anti-gay chants in Latin America.

FIFA ruled that Chile will not be allowed to play their next two World Cup qualifiers at their home stadium in Santiago, while also giving out fines to Chile, Argentina, Colombia, Venezuela, Mexico and Panama "for various incidents involving unsporting conduct by fans, including homophobic chants...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Marlone, Daniuska Rodriguez, Mohd Faiz Subri up for FIFA Puskas award

Corinthians attacking midfielder Marlone, Daniuska Rodriguez and Mohd Faiz Subri are the three nominees for the FIFA Puskas award 2016 for the best goal of the year.

The three-player shortlist was whittled down from an original 10 goals, with the winner to be announced on Jan. 9, 2017.

Lionel Messi's long free kick in Argentina's Copa America 4-0 semifinal victory over the United States and Neymar's flick and volley for Barcelona against Villarreal were not included.

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Lionel Messi's goal vs. U.S., Neymar on shortlist for FIFA Puskas Award

Messi record goal vs US 160621
Lionel Messi scored in Argentina's Copa America semifinal victory over United States.

Lionel Messi, Neymar and Saul Niguez are among the 10 nominees for the FIFA Puskas Award 2016 for the best goal of the year.

Messi's long free kick in Argentina's Copa America 4-0 semifinal victory over the United States, Neymar's flick and volley for Barcelona against Villarreal and Saul's sublime solo effort for Atletico Madrid in their Champions League semifinal win over Bayern Munich are among the leading contenders.

Spain full-back Mario Gaspar is nominated for his acrobatic volley in last...

Ex-Venezuela chief Rafael Esquivel pleads guilty in FIFA scandal

Rafael Esquivel has pleaded guilty to conspiracy and money laundering charges.

Former Venezuela football federation president Rafael Esquivel has pleaded guilty to federal charges in New York.

The case is part of a U.S. investigation into corruption among senior figures in the sport and FIFA.

Esquivel pleaded guilty on Thursday to racketeering conspiracy, wire fraud conspiracy and money laundering conspiracy. Prosecutors say he participated in bribery schemes related to the awarding of contracts for the media and marketing rights.

He faces up to 20 years in prison on each...