Afternoon Ticker: Mourinho poised to join Madrid, Holden offered extension and more

Afternoon Ticker: Mourinho poised to join Madrid, Holden offered extension and more

International Soccer

Afternoon Ticker: Mourinho poised to join Madrid, Holden offered extension and more

Jose Mourinho 1 (Getty Images)

By FRANCO PANIZO

One of the world's greatest coaches looks set to join one of the world's richest clubs.

Fresh off winning the Champions League with Inter Milan, Jose Mourinho looks poised to join Real Madrid. Club president Florentino Perez has announced a board meeting for Tuesday evening and stated that it pertains to the coaching position. With Mourinho being linked to Real Madrid in recent weeks, it is likely he will complete his move from Inter. 

Manuel Pellegrini is currently the Real Madrid manager, but he has fallen under much pressure due to club's trophy-less season.

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Bolton offer Holden extension

Bolton Wanderers have seen enough in U.S. national team midfielder Stuart Holden to offer him a contract extension that would keep him at the club until the end of the 2011-12 season. Holden, who joined the club in the winter, originally signed a six-month deal, but eventually signed an extension until the end of next season. Now manager Owen Coyle looks to extend that deal another year, stating he would love to see Holden stay with the club for a long time.

Newest FIFA Rankings released

The latest FIFA rankings have been released, and the U.S. national team will head into the World Cup in 14th place. The Americans' World Cup opponents, England, Slovenia and Algeria, currently stand in eighth, 25th and 30th respectively.

Brazil tops the rankings while 2008 European champions Spain are in second. Rounding out the top five are Portugal, Holland and Italy. 

Hosts South Africa are listed at 83, while Cameroon is the top-ranked team in Africa at 19.

Paraguay defeated by Ireland in friendly

Paraguay's preparations for the World Cup took a minor blow, as the South Americans fell at the hands of Ireland, 2-1, in a friendly on Tuesday. Kevin Doyle and Liam Lawrence each scored in the first half before Lucas Barrios pulled one back for Paraguay in the second.

Paraguay is in Group F in the World Cup, where it will play Italy, Slovakia and New Zealand.

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Do you see Mourinho being the answer to Madrid's problems? Surprised Bolton offered Holden another contract extension? Think the U.S. national team is fairly ranked at 14th? How do you see Paraguay doing this summer?

Share your thoughts below.

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