Thursday Kickoff: Nesta departs Milan and eyes MLS, Chicharito not permitted to play in Olympics and more

Thursday Kickoff: Nesta departs Milan and eyes MLS, Chicharito not permitted to play in Olympics and more

South American Soccer

Thursday Kickoff: Nesta departs Milan and eyes MLS, Chicharito not permitted to play in Olympics and more

Nesta (Getty)

By FRANCO PANIZO

Alessandro Nesta has confirmed he will leave AC Milan at season's end, and MLS is among the places he might land at next.

Nesta said during a press conference on Thursday morning that he would depart the club after spending a decade there in part because of the rigors of playing for the Italian heavyweight. Nesta added he has not yet signed anywhere, but admitted he would be happy to join MLS. 

The storied Italian international, who has been rumored to joining the New York Red Bulls, helped Milan to two Serie A titles and two Champions League trophies. Nesta also won a league title with Lazio earlier in his career, and was on Italy's World Cup-winning team in 2006.

Here are more stories to help get your morning going:

MANCHESTER UNITED WILL NOT ALLOW CHICHARITO TO PLAY IN OLYMPICS

Javier 'Chicharito'  Hernandez will not be suiting up for Mexico at this summer's Olympics. Manchester United have denied the prolific Mexican striker from playing in the Summer Games in London, as they want him to get a full offseason's rest before the start of the next campaign. Hernandez has not lived up to his first-year standards during his sophomore campaign, scoring just 10 times this season.

ATLETICO MADRID WIN EUROPA LEAGUE TITLE

Atletico Madrid won their second Europa League title in three seasons on Wednesday, and Radamel Falcao played a big part in that happenining. The Colombian striker scored twice to help Atletico Madrid defeat Athletic Bilbao, 3-0, in the all-Spanish encounter. Falcao won the tournament last season with FC Porto, scoring the only goal in the final against Braga. 

BOCA JUNIORS ADVANCE IN COPA LIBERTADORES

Former Argentina international Juan Roman Riquelme inspired Boca Juniors to reach the quarterfinals of the Copa Libertadores, scoring a goal and assisting on another in the club's 3-2 win over Chilean club Union Espanola on Wednesday night. The result pushed Boca Juniors through on a 5-3 aggregate over two legs. Boca is to face a Brazilian side in the next round, as Fluminense and Internacional are its possible opponents.

MONTERREY TIES CLUB AMERICA IN MEXICAN PLAYOFFS

CONCACAF Club champion Monterrey tied Club America, 0-0, in the first leg of their Mexican Clausura playoff semifinal on Wednesday night in Mexico City. America saw midfielder Paul Aguilar sent off in the 83rd minute, meaning he will miss the second leg on Saturday in Monterrey.

The other semifinal series, between Santos Laguna and Tigres, kicks off tonight.

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Fully expecting Nesta to join MLS this summer? Surprised United won't let Chicharito go to the Olympics? Do you see Boca Juniors winning the Copa Libertadores?

Share your thoughts below.

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