Wednesday Kickoff: Prandelli could leave Italy post after World Cup; Ronaldo upset with Özil sale; and more

Wednesday Kickoff: Prandelli could leave Italy post after World Cup; Ronaldo upset with Özil sale; and more

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Wednesday Kickoff: Prandelli could leave Italy post after World Cup; Ronaldo upset with Özil sale; and more

CesarePrandelliItalyNT1 (Getty)

By DAN KARELL

Cesare Prandelli, who lead Italy to second-place at the 2012 European Championships, could leave his managerial post with the Italian National Team following the 2014 World Cup, according to reports in Italy.

The 56-year-old head coach has been in charge of a rejuvenated Italy side, one that also finished in third-place at the Confederations Cup this summer, but he could be off to a new challenge come July, 2014. Prandelli took charge of Italy after Marcello Lippi’s failure at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

The Italian Football Federation has already begun a preliminary search for the next manager, with reports tipping AC Milan manager Max Allegri to take over following the Brazil World Cup.

Here are some more stories to get your Wednesday started:

REAL MADRID PLAYERS SPEAK OUT AFTER ÖZIL TRANSFER

While there was plenty of euphoria in Madrid surrounding the acquisition of Gareth Bale to Real Madrid, many of the players expressed shock on Tuesday and Wednesday about the loss of Mesut Özil.

The German international completed a deadline day transfer to Arsenal for $66 million, helping recoup nearly half of the money spent by Real Madrid for Bale. However, Cristiano Ronaldo was reportedly upset in training with the Portuguese National Team upon hearing the news of Özil’s departure.

“Özil leaving is very bad news for me,” Ronaldo told Spanish publication AS. “He was the player that best understood my movement towards goal.”

In addition, two of Real Madrid’s Spanish National Team players, Sergio Ramos and Isco, both expressed surprise with the decision to sell off one of Madrid’s best players.

“Mesut is a different kind of player,” Ramos told Marca. “If it were up to me, he would be one of the last ones to go.”

Said Isco to Marca: “”The truth is that I’m surprised about Özil, and even more so after he said last week that he would be staying. We all know Özil – he’s got a lot of quality, a player that can really turn a game round.”

QUICK KICKS

Crystal Palace head coach Ian Holloway has been handed a two-match ban for improper conduct by the FA. (REPORT)

Carlton Cole is nearing a return to West Ham after leaving the club two months ago. (REPORT)

Barcelona has agreed a deal with Brazilian club Santos worth a reported €7.9 million for thee players, in order to receive first priority on them. If the Spanish club doesn’t sign them, they will have their money refunded. (REPORT)

Manchester United did make a third signing this summer, bringing in Swiss Under-18 international Saidy Janko from FC Zurich. (REPORT)

Enrique Meza is the newest manager at Mexican side Pachuca. (REPORT)

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What do you think of these reports? Do you see Prandelli leaving the Italy job after the World Cup? Who do you see potentially replacing him? Do you agree with the Real Madrid player’s comments?

Share your thoughts below.

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