Eden Hazard has some serious improving to do - with both his performances and his attitude - even if he's to enter the conversation as one of the world's best players, and he's going to need to step things up if he's actually to be deemed worthy of stepping in to the shoes of Cristiano Ronaldo in the Spanish capital.
The weight of doom England fans carried when gearing up for the World Cup was heavy and the media wrote about nothing more than the impending disappointment we are so used to facing. So this time it's easier and a hell of a lot less painful - we're not even there! Perhaps now we can enjoy the football.
It is entirely conceivable that a man could spend £20 on an Asos equivalent and still look his sharpest. It is also entirely conceivable that Manchester United could be restored to their rampant old selves without Ronaldo, Bale, Cavani or Pogba.
In football, certain things are just inevitable. Brazil will never stop producing world-class talent, England will lose any penalty shootout they compete in, and Real Madrid will always get their man in the transfer market. The latter is something Manchester United fans will know too well.
Page 3 has been something of an embarrassment for Murdoch and his corporate executives for too long. As we know, Murdoch is not someone who bows to pressure and there has been a lot of this over the years.
Having mastered every challenge his sport has placed before him, Ronaldo no longer competes with his peers but has transcended to higher plane to seek measure against the likes of Ali, Nicklaus, Federer, Phelps and Bolt, to name but a few. For in Ronaldo there is no doubt he deserves his place among such stellar company.
The big, glitzy ceremony gives the game away a bit - it's just an excuse for Fifa and co to throw a party, pat themselves on the back, get a few drinks down and rub shoulders with the great and the good. If it was at the end of a season, it might be more palatable.
If Wayne Rooney had been Argentinian or Brazilian, he may well have been the poster boy of a football mad nation. Unfortunately for Wayne, however, he's English and gets lambasted after almost every performance.
At this time of year, the focus turns to the Ballon d'Or and with the 23-man list released earlier today, discussion is rife on social media as to who should and should not be up for nomination for the individual awards event of the year. The nominees will always spark debate...
Overall, 59% of supporters follow their team on a social media platform. Whereas football news stories typically originate on Twitter, it is actually Facebook where football fans are most likely to engage with their team: 44% follow on Facebook, 23% on Twitter, 12% on YouTube, 5% on Google+ and 3% on Instagram.
After finishing third in La Liga last season, Real Madrid are hell bent on reclaiming what they feel is rightfully theirs... With Madrid rumoured to be closing in on the signature of Falcao, their attack will have rivals cast envious eyes over the Bernabeu.
March proved to be a profitable month for a number of the strikers across Europe's top 5 leagues, with WhoScored.com looking at those that have recently hit a purple patch at club level. There were as many as 12 players that scored in at least 4 league matches over the 31 days - an achievement that we felt was worth recognition.
The emergence of players such as Arjen Robben, Eden Hazard and Cristiano Ronaldo in the modern game has taken the pressure off of today's strikers to an extent and so we don't really see your Henrys and van Nistelrooys firing clubs to greatness.
Sometimes, you catch sight of a headline and, as you feel your eyebrows heading for your hairline, you wonder to yourself: "Did I really read that right?" Such a headline caught my notice the other day. "Cristiano Ronaldo opens a museum in his own honour in Madeira, Portugal", it read.
I'm very confident that if you were to put Ronaldo in the Barcelona squad he would have the same effect as Messi, albeit in his own style. But, and I'm sure people will disagree with this, if you put Messi in a Real Madrid shirt, would he have the same effect? My thought is no. In fact, I'd be willing to bet that he would be less effective at almost any other team in the world.
"A World Cup without me is nothing to watch", bold words spoken by the legend that is Zlatan Ibrahimoivic after he and his Sweden teammates' hopes of making it to next summer's World Cup were dashed by Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal...