Wednesday Kickoff: Sneijder nearing move to Galatasaray, Walcott close to signing, and more

Wednesday Kickoff: Sneijder nearing move to Galatasaray, Walcott close to signing, and more

South American Soccer

Wednesday Kickoff: Sneijder nearing move to Galatasaray, Walcott close to signing, and more

BY DAN KARELL

Wesley Sneijder’s transfer saga has now seemingly taken a turn toward Europe’s eastern front.

Turkish club Galatasaray S.K. have announced via their club website that they have begun negotiations with Inter Milan over the transfer of want-away midfielder Wesley Sneijder.

Sneijder has been linked with many clubs, but a move to Turkey was thought to not be on the cards, until today’s news. The Holland international has not played for Inter since September 25 due to contract disputes with the club.

Galatasaray won their 18th league title last year, most all-time in Turkey, and have progressed to the knockout-round of the UEFA Champions League, where they’ll face Schalke 04.

Here are some other stories to kickoff your Wednesday:

ARSENAL CLOSE TO SIGNING WALCOTT

Theo Walcott’s contract holdout tactics seem to have worked.

The 23-year-old forward will be offered a five-year contract worth £25 million, according to reports. The offer includes a £3 million signing bonus as well, and is an improvement to last fall’s £19.5 million offer that Walcott rejected.

There is no doubt that Walcott’s fine form recently has helped him in contract negotiations. The Englishman has scored eight goals and dished out six assists in the Premier League this season, the best marks on the team.

VILANOVA VISITS NEW YORK FOR A SECOND OPINION

Barcelona manager Tito Vilanova has traveled to New York for a second opinion on his recovery from cancerous saliva glands.

Vilanova was back on the sidelines this past weekend to watch Barcelona’s 4-0 drubbing of Espanyol, all of which was earlier than expected. Club President Sandro Rosell had announced earlier that Vilanova wasn’t expected to return until the middle of January.

Vilanova’s trip means that he will not be at this weekend’s Barcelona match against Cordoba.

SOUTH AMERICAN YOUTH CHAMPIONSHIP BEGINS TONIGHT

The spectacle that is South American football takes center stage this evening, as one of the elite youth tournaments in world football kicks off in Argentina.

The tournament that saw the coming-out parties of a couple of little known Argentinians named Lionel Messi and Javier Mascherano has just as many potential stars in this years edition.

Brazilian centerback Doria, Ecuadorian forward Jose Cevallos, Jr, and Argentinian midfielder Adrian Ricardo Centurion are just a few names to keep an eye on over the next month.

QUICK KICKS

Juventus manager Antonio Conte has been cleared of match-fixing more games during his time at Bari. (REPORT)

David Beckham has indicated that he won’t be playing for West Ham or Queens Park Rangers when he decides his footballing future. (REPORT)

Bolton Wanderers forward Marvin Sordell has admitted he has a Facebook and Twitter problem. (REPORT)

20-year-old Australian starlet Tomas Rogic is closing in on a transfer to Celtic F.C. (REPORT)

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What do you think of these reports? Do you see Sneijder ending up at Galatasaray? Can Arsenal close the deal on Walcott? Who are some South American talents you’ll have your eye on during the South American Youth Championship?

Share your thoughts below.

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