This article was originally published on December 7th, 2018.
Here is this week's dose of “5-Point Friday”. A weekly round-up of the sports news and stories that I find most interesting and enjoyable.
Soccer news that I am researching -
A third European club competition with the working title "Europa League 2" will be introduced from 2021. As part of UEFA's 2021-24 cycle, the Europa League "will be halved in size to 32 teams" with an extra playoff round between the group stage and the last 16. The new tournament will be played on Thursdays alongside the Europa League. The new competition and Europa League will have the same format, 8 groups of 4 teams with the winner going into the last 16.
Football news that intrigues me -
The host cities of the relaunching XFL was confirmed this week. The league which will start in the spring of 2020, will be in eight markets. WWE chairman Vince McMahon's (@VinceMcMahon) XFL announced that they will have teams in seven current NFL cities and one former NFL city.
African sports news that I am learning about -
The Confederation of African Football (CAF) announced that Cameroon has been stripped of hosting next year's Africa Cup of Nations. CAF says it is because of delays in the progress of Cameroon's preparation for the tournament. In a statement, CAF said "a number of compliance conditions have not been met" and it did not want to expose the Africa Cup of Nations to "any issues that could impact the success of the most prestigious African competition". CAF president Ahmad Ahmad says it will work to "determine a new organizing country by the end of the year". CAF added postponing the tournament was not possible due to contractual commitments. The tournament is set to be the first held in June and July and will be expanded from 16 to 24 teams.
Hockey news that I'm excited about -
The NHL's Board of Governors announced that it unanimously approved Seattle's bid to become the league's 32nd active franchise. The expansion team will get to take the ice for the first time in the 2021/22 season, at a renovated KeyArena. NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said, "Today is a day of celebration in a great city that adores and avidly supports its sports teams." The franchise already collected more than 32,000 season-ticket deposits on the first day of sale.
What I have been reading -
This week I finished Ron Wolf and Paul Attner's "The Packer Way: Nine Stepping Stones to Building a Winning Organization." As executive vice president and general manager of the Green Bay Packers, Ron Wolf has played a pivotal role in transforming the Packers from a forgotten outpost of the NFL into a champion team. Wolf describes his nine fundamental principles, used to achieve such success.
Have a wonderful weekend, all!