Wednesday Kickoff: Qatar plotting 'Dream' club tournament (or is it), Monterrey moves on to CCL semis, and more

Wednesday Kickoff: Qatar plotting 'Dream' club tournament (or is it), Monterrey moves on to CCL semis, and more

South American Soccer

Wednesday Kickoff: Qatar plotting 'Dream' club tournament (or is it), Monterrey moves on to CCL semis, and more

Ryan Giggs of Manchester United in action with Juan Mata of Chelsea

BY DAN KARELL

Some say money can’t buy you love, but in the football world, it can buy just about anything.

Reports are streaming out of England that name Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea, and Arsenal, as the centerpieces of a Dream Football League, which is being organized and would take place in Qatar, during the summer of 2015. In a competition of 24 teams, the winner could bring in upwards of $280 million, a number that’s four times higher than what Chelsea received for winning the Champions League last season.

The four Premier League clubs would be joined by 16 other permanent members of the DFL, as it’s being called, with eight teams invited on a year-to-year basis.

There are fresh reports suggesting the original report about the ‘Dream Football League’ was a hoax, but London Times author Oliver Kay, who penned the original article, has refuted such claims via Twitter.

Here are some more stories to get your Wednesday started:

MONTERREY MOVE ON TO SEMI-FINALS

Mexican club Monterrey, two-time defending champions of the CONCACAF Champions League, have earned a place in the semi-final round of the competition, following a 1-1 draw against Xelaju on Tuesday night in Monterrey.

The Mexican side, which won the two-legged affair 4-2 on aggregate, went down a goal in the 44th minute, when Fredy Santiago scored for the Guatemalan side, forcing Monterrey manager Victor Manuel Vucetich to change his halftime talk.

The home side, who finished third at the 2012 Club World Cup, scored one back in the 64th minute via Walter Ayovi. The goal was enough to see Rayados into the next round, where they’ll face either Herediano of Costa Rica, or Los Angeles Galaxy of MLS.

MINNOWS CARACAS STUN GIANTS GREMIO

On Tuesday night in Caracas, Venezuela, Caracas FC channeled the spirit of former president Hugo Chavez, and defeated former Copa Libertadores champs Gremio, by a score of 2-1.

The Brazilian side took the lead in the 17th minute, when former Man City forward Elano headed in a cross from former Arsenal left back Andre Santos. The home side were sent into the locker room happy though, when Louis Angelo Pena’s 20 yard strike went into the bottom corner, two minutes into first-half stoppage time.

In the 66th minute, Caracas completed the comeback, when Edder Farias slotted home from close range, stunning the star-studded Brazilian lineup and their supporters, while putting the home crowd into delirious celebrations. With the win, Caracas joins Gremio with six points in the table, with the Brazilian club ahead on goal difference in second place in Group 8.

Across the continent on Tuesday evening, Newell’s Old Boys defeated Universidad de Chile 2-0 to go top of Group 7, Velez Sarsfield of Argentina defeated Peñarol of Uruguay 3-1, and Sporting Cristal of Peru tied Libertad of Paraguay 1-1.

QUICK KICKS

The Brazilian National Team will play a friendly match against Bolivia, with all proceeds from the game going to the family of the 14-year-old San Jose (BOL) fan who was killed by a stray flare at a match against Brazilian side Corinthians (REPORT)

On-loan Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha, who signed for Manchester United in January, has been charged by the FA for improper conduct, after making an inappropriate gesture to the crowd. (REPORT)

Barcelona are interested in a move for FC Porto’s Jackson Martinez, who has 23 goals in 22 games in the Portuguese league this season. (REPORT)

England have hired Peter Taylor to coach their U-20 team at the upcoming U-20 World Cup in Turkey. (REPORT)

Galatasaray fans who didn’t have a ticket to the match against Schalke on Tuesday night tried to dig a hole under a fence with their bare hands to get inside the stadium. (REPORT)

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What do you think of these reports? Do you see Qatar creating the DFL by 2015? Can Monterrey make the final once more? What do you think of the Caracas result?

Share your thoughts below.

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