Mid-Day Ticker: Ronaldinho recalled, Villa wants to re-sign Friedel and more

Mid-Day Ticker: Ronaldinho recalled, Villa wants to re-sign Friedel and more

MLS- Seattle Sounders

Mid-Day Ticker: Ronaldinho recalled, Villa wants to re-sign Friedel and more

RonaldinhoReuters

By AVI CREDITOR

Ronaldinho is making his return to the Selecao.

After being left off the World Cup roster and not suiting up for Brazil since April, 2009, the former FIFA World Player of the Year was called into the national team by coach Mano Menezes for next month's highly anticipated friendly against Argentina in Qatar.

The last match Ronaldinho played for Brazil was a World Cup qualifier, but he was left off the final roster by then-coach Dunga despite starting to re-display the form that made him one of the most feared soccer players on the planet.

He has yet to score for AC Milan this season but has been instrumental in setting up Robinho, Alexandre Pato and Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who have done most of the damage for the Serie A power that is two points behind Lazio for the top spot in the league table.

Here are a few more stories to help get you to the weekend:

ASTON VILLA WANTS TO RE-SIGN FRIEDEL

With his contract up at the end of the year, Brad Friedel figures to have plenty of options, including a potential rumored return to Major League Soccer or a move to one of the goalkeeper-needy teams in Europe.

Aston Villa would like to keep him right where he is, though.

The Associated Press is reporting that manager Gerard Houllier definitely wants to keep the 39-year-old keeper at Villa Park beyond this season. Should Friedel re-sign, that could mean continued time on the bench or a transfer for American back-up Brad Guzan, who has bided his time as Friedel's understudy while taking the majority of the goalkeeping duties during cup play.

RILEY WINS FINAL MLS GOAL OF THE WEEK

James Riley isn't known for his goal scoring, but his finish against the Houston Dynamo in the Seattle Sounders' regular-season finale was certainly top-class.

Riley's 20-yard laser earned the final MLS Goal of the Week award, and it made him the second Sounders defender to win the honor this season. Leo Gonzalez took home the honor in Week 11.

Even further, the Sounders were given the award for the fourth straight week and have accounted for nine of the 30 winners this season. Here's video of Riley's blast:

ITALY TO BE GIVEN EURO QUALIFYING WIN

The Italian Football Association is claiming that the Azzurri will be given a 3-0 victory for the suspended Euro 2012 qualifying match in Genoa between Italy and Serbia that had to be stopped because of unruly Serbian spectators.

In addition to being given the loss, Serbia's punishment also includes two games that will have to be played behind closed doors. Italy will be forced to play one game without spectators.

FIFA WON'T CHANGE ANNOUNCEMENT DATE

Despite its executive officials convening to determine whether to postpone the announcement of the hosts for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, FIFA declared that the date will remain unchanged.

FIFA did determine that the final presentations for the bidding hosts will be split over the course of two days. The countries bidding for the 2022 tournament will make their final presenation on Dec. 1, and those vying for the 2018 tournament will go Dec. 2. The final vote will be held after the 2018 presentations.

SNEIJDER SIGNS INTER EXTENSION

Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder signed a contract extension with Inter Milan that will keep him at the San Siro for the next five years.

His current contract ran through the 2013 season, but the extension will have the Ballon d'Or nominee suiting up for Inter through 2015.

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Excited to see Ronaldinho play for Brazil again? Would you like to see Friedel re-sign with Aston Villa? What did you think of Riley's finish? Think the punishment fits the crime in the Italy-Serbia situation? Happy to see Sneijder stick with Inter?

Share your thoughts below.

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