JULY 9 – SHORT CORNERS: INTERNATIONAL SOCCER NEWS NOTES AND RUMORS

JULY 9 – SHORT CORNERS: INTERNATIONAL SOCCER NEWS NOTES AND RUMORS

GOLDEN BALL FINALISTS ANNOUNCED

The greatest players of the 2010 World Cup are all up for the prestigious Golden Ball Award. The title goes to the most valuable player of the tournament.

Finalists Spain lead all teams with three different nominees, Andres Iniesta, David Villa and Xavi head the list, all three play their club football at Barcelona.

Spain’s rivals in the final, the Netherlands contibute Wesley Sneijder and Arjen Robben to the ten-man shortlist.

Tournament semi-finalists Germany contribute two to the list in Bastian Schweinsteiger and Mesut Oezil and Diego Forlan is the lone representative from Uruguay.

Argentina’s Lionel Messi and Ghana’s Asamoah Gyan round out the nominations.

In 2006, Zinedine Zidane won the Golden Ball.

MAN CITY IN FOR BALOTELLI

Manchester City is in hot pursuit of Inter Milan’s petulant forward Mario Balotelli and are prepared to pay for the Italian U21.

Balotelli’s struggles with former Inter Milan boss Jose Mourinho were constantly in the news last season, leaving a clouded future for the troubled Italian.

Man City boss Roberto Mancini, who gave Balotelli his Inter Milan debut in 2007, has admitted he is ready to snatch the teenager if he should become available.

“We are always interested in good players,” Mancini told Il Giornale. “If Inter decide to sell [Balotelli], we will be there.

“I have no problems [with Balotelli]. The most important thing is that they are good, so that they go on the pitch and play well.”

WEST HAM MOVES FOILED

Hot on the heels of having German International Superstar Miroslav Klose slip through the clubs fingers, West Ham have given up on bringing Jermaine Pennant back to the Premiership. The former Liverpool winger is happy to remain at Spanish side Real Zaragoza.

Now comes news that their targeting of Mexican standout Pablo Berrara from UNAM Pumas has run into a work permit snag even though Pumas manager Mario Trejo told Mexican web site Informador. a deal was “very close to completion.”

With Spanish side Espanyol and Premier League superclub waiting in the wings, West Ham boss Avram Grant will be hoping the matter is resolved quickly.

West Ham is also on trail of another Pumas Mexican, this time defender Efrain Juarez.

CITY DIVE INTO PODOLSKI DANCE

Manchester City cannot resist a good bidding war for a big name and consequently the deep pocketed Premier League club have thrown the gauntlet down on German International Lukas Podolski.

The Eastlands club have opened the bidding for the 1. FC Köln striker at $22.5 million, according to Morgenpost.

The 25-year-old has pushed Germany into the 3rd place match even though he has struggled in the Bundesliga in recent seasons, and his stock has risen considerably as a result.

The Poland born forward can also play on the wing, a fact that will no doubt be forefront on the mind of Blues manager Roberto Mancini, who will need versatility in his lineup.

Podolski is said to be happy at Koln, a team he got his professional start at-money offer could be hard to for the club to turn down after he scored just two top flight goals last term.

READ… JULY 8 SHORT CORNERS

READ… LES ROUGES REPORT-CANADIAN SOCCER NEWS

READ… OVER THERE… YANKS IN EUROPE

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One Response to “JULY 9 – SHORT CORNERS: INTERNATIONAL SOCCER NEWS NOTES AND RUMORS”

  1. JULY 13 – SHORT CORNERS: INTERNATIONAL SOCCER NEW NOTES AND RUMORS « GOODMAN BROWNE ON THE PITCH Says:

    […] READ… FRIDAY’S SHORT CORNERS […]

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