By DAN KARELL
Liverpool have rejected a major bid for star forward Luis Suarez from, of all teams, Arsenal.
According to numerous reports in the English media, Arsenal submitted an offer of £30 million (nearly $45 million) for the 26-year-old Uruguayan, who has been oft-rumored to be on his way out of Anfield this summer after his ten-match suspension for biting Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic.
Arsenal are currently also trying to sign Real Madrid forward Gonzalo Higuain, and some reports have said that the bid for Suarez is just a way to make Madrid speed up the process to sell their Argentine goal scorer.
Suarez missed the final four matches of last season and will miss the first six of the new Premier League season this fall, wherever he is playing. While many could argue over his mentality in games that could lead him to dive, or potentially bite someone, for example, no one can argue about his talent.
Suarez nearly carried Liverpool single-handedly in the first half of the season, scoring 30 goals in all competitions, 23 of them in the Premier League. Suarez recently helped lead Uruguay to a fourth-place finish at the Confederations Cup.
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GOMEZ SET FOR FIORENTINA
After being told that he was surplus to requirements this season by the Bayern Munich hierarchy, Mario Gomez is set to continue his career at Fiorentina in Serie A.
The 27-year-old forward has signed a four-year contract with the Italian club, who will pay a total of €20 million ($25.7 million) for the German international’s services, €16 million now, and another €4 million over the next few years.
Bayern lose ten million Euros in the transfer, after signing Gomez to the club for €30 million in 2009. Last season, Gomez struggled to maintain a starting spot in the Bayern lineup due to injury and lack of form, featuring just 21 times in the Bundesliga, and only nine of those from the opening whistle. The forward did manager to score 19 goals in all competitions.
IRAQ, GHANA JOIN FRANCE, URUGUAY AT UNDER-20 WORLD CUP SEMIFINALS
For the first time in FIFA Under-20 World Cup history, a nation from the Asian Football Confederation will be playing in the semifinals.
Iraq, who stormed back to draw with England in their opening group stage match and haven’t lost a game yet, defeated South Korea in penalty kicks, 5-4, after the two sides finished extra time at 3-3. Goals in the final three minutes of extra time only added to the drama of the match.
Iraq scored in the 118th minute from Farhan Shakor’s second of the match, but a deflected shot by Jung Hyuncheol found the back of the net for an unlikely late comeback in the 120th minute to go to penalty kicks. After Iraqi goalkeeper Mohammed Hameed saved Lee Gwanghun’s PK attempt, Shakor stepped up to the spot and buried the shot for a goal to move Iraq to the next round.
In the other match on Sunday, Ghana out-lasted Chile in a seven-goal thriller, 4-3, in extra time. The wonderfully named Ebenezer Assifuah scored in extra-time stoppage time to ensure victory for the African nation, earning a place in the semifinals, the farthest they have gone since winning the competition in 2009. Assifuah scored twice on the day, as did Manchester United’s Chilean forward Angelo Henriquez.
Still actively adding squad depth, Tottenham are making a run for Real Madrid’s Spain Under-20 star Jese Rodriguez. (REPORT)
Swansea City are closing in on last season’s Eredivisie top scorer Wilfried Bony for a transfer fee of £13 million ($19.3 million). (REPORT)
Real Madrid are on the verge of signing Real Sociedad midfielder Asier Illarramendi for a fee of €30 million. (REPORT)
Club America has announced the signing of Colombian midfielder Andres Andrade for the upcoming Apertura campaign. (REPORT)
AS Monaco have confirmed on Twitter the signing of Eric Abidal on a free transfer. (REPORT)
Fulham and Benfica are interested in bringing in Ghanian international Mohammed Rabiu. (REPORT)
What do you think of these reports? Do you see Arsenal signing Suarez? Do you think Gomez can be successful at Fiorentina? What performances at the Under-20 World Cup stood out to you?
Share your thoughts below.