Friday Kickoff: Iniesta not interested in foreign offers; FIFA ethics committee can't take WC from Qatar; and more

Friday Kickoff: Iniesta not interested in foreign offers; FIFA ethics committee can't take WC from Qatar; and more

International Soccer

Friday Kickoff: Iniesta not interested in foreign offers; FIFA ethics committee can't take WC from Qatar; and more

AndresIniestaBarcelona3 (Getty)

By DAN KARELL

Contract negotiations are continuing between Barcelona and Andres Iniesta, but the club is reportedly not worried about rushing to complete a new deal.

The Spanish international’s current deal runs through the end of the 2014/2015 season, when Iniesta will be 31-years old, but according to reports in Spain, Iniesta isn’t interested in leaving Barcelona. Manchester United has recently been reported to have been ramping up their interest in the star midfielder, but it looks like their efforts will come to naught.

The reports state that Barcelona wants to make Iniesta the second-highest paid player in the squad behind Lionel Messi. The Argentine forward is making more than $20 million per season. In recent weeks, it’s been reported that Barcelona is interested in presenting a new contract offer in December.

Iniesta, currently with the Spanish national team in Equatorial Guinea, has made 19 appearances for Barcelona already this season, with no goals but two assists.

Here are some more stories to start your Friday off:

FIFA ETHICS COMMITTEE CAN ONLY SANCTION INDIVIDUALS, NOT QATAR

As FIFA’s independent ethics committee continues its work to determine whether the Qatar and Russian World Cup bids were illegally won, it turns out that the committee’s power is severely limited, according to reports in England.

A report in The Telegraph says that even if attorney Michael Garcia and his investigative team find evidence of wrongdoing, they could only sanction individuals involved, but they can’t take away the decision to award the World Cup to either Russia or Qatar. The Qatari World Cup bid has been under a harsh media spotlight in the last 12 months due to myriad problems, including the weather in summer, workers right’s issues, and other potential problems that could occur in the tiny Gulf nation.

“If Garcia finds something which was wrong, the ethics committee has the right to take sanctions,” an unidentified FIFA official told The Telegraph. “But does he have the right to say ‘based on what I have found the World Cup should not be played in Qatar?’ No, he does not have that right.”

QUICK KICKS

Spain manager Vicente del Bosque has confirmed that he has extended his contract with the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) through 2016. (REPORT)

UEFA has reportedly made the San Siro in Milan the 2016 UEFA Champions League final venue. (REPORT)

Barcelona left back Jordi Alba has returned to Barcelona training after more than one month on the sidelines following a setback suffered in his recovery from a hamstring injury. (REPORT)

Current Inter Milan president Massimo Morati said that new owner Erick Thohir will take over as president as well. (REPORT)

Radamel Falcao was among the goal scorers on Thursday as Colombia defeated Belgium in Brussels, 2-0. (REPORT)

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What do you think of these reports? Do you see Iniesta signing a new contract with Barcelona this winter? Disappointed that the FIFA ethics committee can’t sanction Qatar?

Share your thoughts below.

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