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Alexi Lalas Usain Bolt Would Flop in MLS But I'd Still Love to See It!

4/20/2018 12:20 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Usain Bolt's futbol dreams just got red-carded by one of the biggest stars in American soccer ... who says The World's Fastest Man would get smoked in the MLS!!

We got Alexi Lalas at LAX, and filled him in on Usain telling Major League soccer teams to, "bring the big contracts."

Alexi loves that Bolt's trying to do something different ... but the Team USA legend clearly ain't buying Usain as the next Zlatan Ibrahimovic

"Just because you're a good athlete doesn't mean you're good in a particular sport," Lalas told TMZ Sports.

"Soccer's a lot different than just being fast and being able to kick the ball."

Ouch.

That said, Alexi says he'd love to see Usain put his best foot-y forward -- just as long as him and Ibra don't squad up!

"That's a lot of ego -- they're gonna have to get a second locker room."

Rachel Platten Turns National Anthem Into National Disaster

4/16/2018 10:43 AM PDT
Breaking News

Hey Fergie, you're off the hook ... 

Pop star Rachel Platten -- the chick who sang "Fight Song" -- botched the National Anthem in a SPECTACULAR way at an NWSL soccer game over the weekend ... and it's hard to watch. 

Platten has performed the song on big stages before -- even singing it at the World Series! 

But when she grabbed the mic in Salt Lake City on Saturday before the Chicago Red Stars took on the Utah Royals ... it was amateur hour. 

It started bad ... "Oh say can you see, by the STARS early light."

It got worse ... she had to restart twice and even asked for someone to give her the lyrics. The crowd tried to join in and help her along, but the lyric blowing must have been contagious, because they were messing up too! 

She eventually recovered and finished ... but good lord. 

Usain Bolt Message to MLS Teams: 'Bring the Big Contracts!'

4/16/2018 12:40 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Usain Bolt says he ain't ruling out the MLS for his budding pro soccer career -- IF their squads show him the money!! 

FYI, Bolt's been seriously pursuing footy since he retired from the track last year. Most recently, he was out tearin' up the pitch with Bundesliga's Borussia Dortmund ... and Manchester United is his dream team.

But when we got the World's Fastest Man at LAX, we had to ask if MLS teams like the L.A. Galaxy even had a shot. 

Bolt's response -- "Bring the big contracts!" 

Guessing MLS can't offer Premier League money ... but there are other perks that come with playing in L.A. (right, Zlatan Ibrahimovic?). 

Bonus: We also asked Usain if he would consider the 2020 Olympics if the whole soccer thing doesn't pan out ... and he let us know. 

Ex-Team USA Soccer Coach Bruce Arena ... I Regret Nothing!

4/14/2018 12:05 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Regrets? Bruce Arena doesn't have a few ... even though Team USA didn't qualify for the 2018 World Cup. 

Now that it's been a couple of months since the heartbreaking and shocking failure ... we asked the former Team USA head coach if he had any regrets for the way things went down during the qualifiers. 

"I don't have any regrets," Arena told us ... "I'm disappointed, but I don't have any regrets."

'I and my staff and the players ... we gave everything we had and we fell short."

The good news -- Arena is VERY stoked about one of the young Team USA stars and says we've got a real shot to make a run in 2022. 

So, who will Arena be rooting for in the 2018 World Cup now that we're not competing?

Hint: It's a North American squad. 

NY Red Bulls Insane Fan Brawl Dude Gets Spartan-Kicked!

4/11/2018 10:34 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Fists were flying, beer was thrown and a dude got KICKED DOWN THE STANDS during a brawl at the NY Red Bulls game on Tuesday ... and TMZ Sports has the crazy video. 

Sources in the stands tell us ... Red Bulls fans had been getting into it with Chivas Guadalajara supporters during the CONCACAF Champions League semifinal at Red Bulls Arena in NJ all game long. 

But, things finally came to a head after time expired when the smack talk turned physical. 

You can see beer flying from everywhere -- including people from the upper level showering the fighters below them. 

The craziest moment ... one of the combatants kicked another dude right in the chest -- sending him flying backwards down several rows of seats. 

Stadium security eventually showed up and broke up the violence -- but you can see several people had already suffered injuries by the time help arrived. 

We've reached out to the Red Bulls and stadium security -- so far, no comment from anyone. 

By the way ... the game ended in a 0-0 tie.

Tim Howard Booty King At Dallas Strip Club!

4/9/2018 11:04 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Tim Howard's a goalie ... so, unlike everyone else, he's allowed to use his hands -- even at the strip club! 

The Team USA soccer legend was living it up at the legendary V Live over the weekend -- where we're told the dancers and the staff FREAKED OUT (in a good way) when they saw him walk in! 

Side note -- apparently, soccer is huge in the Texas stripper community. 

He bumped, he grinded ... he threw out thousands of dollars in cash -- everyone had a great time! 

Howard and the Colorado Rapids were in Texas to face FC Dallas on Saturday ... and even though the game ended in a draw, Howard was clearly in the mood to celebrate. 

He'll have plenty of time to come back and visit later this year ... since, you know, Team USA won't be busy with the World Cup or anything ... 

Zlatan Ibrahimovic Ronaldo's Goal Is 'Best Ever'

4/5/2018 6:19 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Legend respect legend -- with Zlatan Ibrahimovic telling TMZ Sports ... Cristiano Ronaldo's insane bicycle kick is the best goal of all time.

Ronaldo's incredible goal against Juventes during a Champions League quarter final match on Wednesday has already gone viral. Ronaldo himself suggested it was the greatest shot of his career. 

So, when we saw Zlatan leaving Il Pastaio in Bev Hills Wednesday night, we had to ask where he would rank the goal among the greatest of all time. 

"It was fantastic ... best ever!" 

He's not the only soccer legend who feels that way -- Zinedine Zidane described the shot as "one of the most beautiful in history."

But, was it better than Zlatan's own amazing 40-yard bomb he hit against the LAFC over the weekend during his MLS debut with the Los Angeles Galaxy? 

We asked ... and got a rare moment of humility from the guy who previously said he was "born a legend."

Zlatan Ibrahimovic 'I Was Born a Legend'

4/3/2018 6:30 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Zlatan Ibrahimovic doesn't think he became a legend overnight in Los Angeles after his stellar MLS debut -- telling TMZ Sports, "I was BORN a legend."

And he meant it! 

Zlatan is an international superstar who just signed with the L.A. Galaxy and scored 2 insane goals in his debut this past Saturday ... including a rocket from 40 yards out. 

The Swedish-born striker was leaving Mastro's Steakhouse in Bev Hills with his family where he told us he's enjoying his time in L.A. and hopes to lead his team to an MLS title -- explaining, "Train hard, work hard and hopefully!"

No pressure ...  

Ex-Galaxy Star Kyle Martino Ibrahimovic is Huge Move For MLS ... He's STILL Top-Quality!!

3/24/2018 12:15 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Zlatan Ibrahimovic's move to the L.A. Galaxy is gonna have a MAJOR impact on soccer in the U.S. ... so says ex-Galaxy star Kyle Martino, who tells TMZ Sports Ibra's presence alone is gonna be a game changer.

Martino -- who was on the Galaxy when they signed some dude named David Beckham -- says despite being 36, Ibra's gonna be a "top-quality talent" for the MLS.

K.M. says even if fans don't like his "charming narcissism," they're gonna end up tuning in to watch him 'cause he's THAT good of a player.

Check out the clip ... you can see just how stoked Martino is to have Ibra in the MLS.

Team USA's Jermaine Jones Ditching MLS to Retire in Europe ... Then Coach!!

3/7/2018 11:50 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

Jermaine Jones, one of Team USA soccer's biggest stars, says he's done ballin' in America (unless it's with the USMNT) ... telling TMZ Sports he wants to finish his career in Europe!

Backstory -- JJ grew up in the U.S. and Germany ... but played his best ball in Bundesliga, one of Europe's top leagues.

His MLS stint with the L.A. Galaxy didn't go nearly as well ... so Jermaine says he wants to pull a reverse David Beckham and go back to where the "best soccer" is at. 

Before the 36-year-old tries to turn back the clock, Jones says he's got some other business to attend to -- including getting certified to coach!!

As for where JJ wants to hold the clipboard once he retires ... sounds like he's keeping his options open.

Alexi Lalas Zlatan To MLS? GREAT! (On One Condition)

2/18/2018 12:25 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

U.S. soccer legend Alexi Lalas loves the idea of Zlatan Ibrahimović coming to play stateside ... but he's warning the league -- DON'T GET SCREWED ON THE PRICE!  

Remember, Lalas was the GM of the L.A. Galaxy when the team (and the league) signed a 31-year-old David Beckham to a deal in 2007 that ultimately paid him $255 million!!!

Now, with rumors 36-year-old Zlatan is thinking of making a similar move -- we had to ask Lalas how he would handle the situation. 

"If Zlatan wants to come, if he doesn't cost too much money ... then I think it's something the Galaxy and MLS have to do. I think it would be wonderful on and off the field. He's worth the price of admission."

"He's a character on and off the field," Lalas added. 

It's true -- Zlatan's got his own cologne, underwear line ... and once performed on a song that hit the Swedish music charts. 

Enjoy ... 

Alexi Lalas Ronaldo Proved He's a Gangsta ... by Getting Bloody

1/28/2018 12:15 AM PST
EXCLUSIVE

Cristiano Ronaldo is a certified G -- so says Alexi Lalas ... who's slamming the soccer superstar's "pretty boy" rep after witnessing his badassery this past weekend. 

"Anytime there's an athlete that bleeds and plays through it ... they get a little street cred," Alexi told TMZ Sports.

You remember the carnage -- Ronaldo dove in for the header in Real Madrid's match against Deportivo ... scoring a goal, but taking a cleat to the dome in the process.

The collision left Cristiano a bloody mess ... and scrambling for a mirror to check on his moneymaker.

A lot of fans were poking fun at Ronaldo for the mirror-check, but Lalas says CR7 completing the header says way more about him than anything else.

Not to say he isn't pretty -- Alexi definitely ain't denying that!

Demi Lovato Dinner Date with Neymar ... Just Friends?

11/15/2017 8:25 AM PST

Is Demi Lovato in the "friend zone" with Neymar

The singer and the soccer superstar went for a dinner date in London on Tuesday -- after Neymar played for Team Brazil in an international friendly against England. 

Oh, there was a 3rd person at the dinner as well ... smokin' hot TV host Layla Anna-Lee

But despite the fact Neymar and Demi look GREAT together, the soccer stud is preemptively striking against dating rumors ... posting Instagram photos with the caption, "My friends girls."

BOOOOO!!!!

Neymar's probably not Demi's type anyway. She's into fighters

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