Tuesday Kickoff: Rooney fit for England; Messi and Balotelli to miss friendly match; and more

Tuesday Kickoff: Rooney fit for England; Messi and Balotelli to miss friendly match; and more


Tuesday Kickoff: Rooney fit for England; Messi and Balotelli to miss friendly match; and more

WayneRooneyEngland2 (Getty)


Having missed all of preseason with a variety of injuries, Wayne Rooney could make his season debut on Wednesday.

Currently with the England squad, manager Roy Hodgson said he believes Rooney is free of any injuries, and would like to see him play in the friendly match at Wembley Stadium vs. Scotland, pending his fitness levels. The 27-year-old would be making his 84th appearance for the England National Team if he plays.

Since returning from Manchester United’s Tour of Asia with a hamstring injury in early July, Rooney has yet to see the field for Man United in any preseason friendly match, even missing last Tuesday’s match in Sweden due to what Man United called a shoulder problem. Many reports believe that leaving Rooney out of these games is to enable the club to find a transfer away from the club and David Moyes.

However, reports this week in England state that Rooney could end up playing for Man United in their season opener on Saturday vs. Swansea City.

Here are some more stories to get your Tuesday kicked off:


In a much anticipated friendly match between old rivals Italy and Argentina, some of the shine and polish from the match will be absent.

Argentina forward Lionel Messi and Italy striker Mario Balotelli will both miss the match due to minor injuries, according to reports in Italy. The two were part of separate audiences on Tuesday to meet with the Pope in Rome, but are expected to both leave the Eternal City for their respective club teams as they work towards the start of their league seasons.

Messi was left off Barcelona’s squad last Saturday in Malaysia due to an injury worry, and the club are hopeful that he will be ready for their opener on Sunday.


While Barcelona have kept their negotiations for Chelsea defender David Luiz under wraps, they are reportedly looking at other options in case the Luiz transfer doesn’t go through.

According to reports in Spain, Barcelona are looking into signing former Paris Saint Germain defender Mamadou Sakho, who has dropped down the pecking order under Laurent Blanc. Currently Alex and Thiago Silva are the preferred centerback duo at PSG.

Despite being at the club since 2007 and making more than 150 appearances for the side, the 23-year-old Sakho is reported to be pondering a change of scenery to give his career the jump-start it needs.

Meanwhile, PSG is reportedly looking at right back options to replace Gregory Van der Wiel, who is thought to be on his way out of the Parc des Princes. One of the players PSG is looking at, and has always had their eyes on, is Daniel Alves of Barcelona.


West Ham have completed the transfer of winger Stewart Downing from Liverpool for a reported £6 million ($9.3 million). (REPORT)

Due to financial issues Anzhi Makhachkala is looking to offload many of their players, including Samuel Eto’o, who is interested in a move to Chelsea. (REPORT)

Christian Eriksen, who is thought to potentially be on his way out of Ajax, is hoping for a switch to Tottenham. (REPORT)

Bayern Munich’s Luiz Gustavo has admitted that he would be interested in a reported move to Arsenal. (REPORT)

Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has joined many voices in calling for an end to foreign players in English club academies. (REPORT)


What do you think of these developments? Do you see Rooney making his season debut on Wednesday? Do you believe losing Balotelli and Messi for the Italy/Argentina friendly takes away from the match? Do you see Sakho moving to Barcelona?

Share your thoughts below.

More from

More SBI