Photo by ISIPhotos.com
By DAN KARELL
Nicolas Anelka is no stranger to controversy, but his latest actions could cost him a lengthy period on the sidelines.
The West Bromwich Albion forward is facing a minimum five-match ban after being charged by the FA with violating “FA Rule E3,” which states that Anelka made a “gesture which was abusive and/or indecent and/or insulting and/or improper.” The Frenchman has until Thursday to appeal the charge.
During West Bromwich’s match against West Ham on Dec. 28, Anelka made a gesture known as the “quenelle” which is an opposite Nazi salute and has strong anti-semitic connotations. Anelka and West Bromwich have refuted any claims of anti-semitism as a result of the gesture and the 34-year-old forward said in the week following the incident that he performed the gesture to support his friend, the creator of the gesture, French comedian Dieudonne M’bala M’bala.
West Bromwich released a statement noting the FA charge and stating that Anelka is considering his options. Anelka has scored two goals in 11 English Premier League matches since joining the club last July.
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MAN UNITED LINKED WITH CAVANI, WON’T SWAP ROONEY FOR MATA
With a reported war chest of £180 million at his disposal, Manchester United manager David Moyes is targeting one of Europe’s most expensive forwards to improve his squad.
With Robin Van Persie and Wayne Rooney suffering from injuries this season, French publication L’Equipe reports that Man United are interested in signing Paris Saint-Germain forward Edinson Cavani this month. Unfortunately for Moyes, the report states that PSG manager Laurent Blanc ruled out a Cavani sale, so Man United will have to wait until this summer at the earliest to try again.
Moyes attended PSG’s 3-1 Coup de France victory at Bordeaux seven days ago to watch Cavani first hand. The Uruguayan international moved last summer from Napoli to Paris for €64 million (around €86 million).
Meanwhile, the Guardian in England report that Man United would not include Wayne Rooney in a potential bid for Chelsea midfielder Juan Mata, who is reportedly available at the right price to leave Stamford Bridge.
INTER MILAN LOOK FOR GUARIN REPLACEMENT
As Fredy Guarin heads out of Inter Milan, the club are quickly working on finding his replacement.
According to reports in Italy, the Nerazzurri are negotiating with Lazio for Brazilian midfielder Hernanes. Reports state that the two sides are still some way off, with Lazio right now settling for no less than €18 million while Inter have offered €15 million and aren’t interested in moving higher.
However, Inter is also receiving transfer offers from Borussia Dortmund for defender Andrea Ranocchia. The German club have offered Inter €9 million but the Italian club want at least €11-12 million in return. As Inter have not taken part in a European competition, Ranocchia would be able to play for Dortmund in the next round of the UEFA Champions League if he does complete a transfer.
Tottenham head coach Tim Sherwood has talked up young midfielder Nabil Bentaleb’s chances of representing France at the World Cup next summer in Brazil. (REPORT)
Former Argentine National Team midfielder Osvaldo Ardiles was in a car accident on Monday night in the Falkland Islands and was admitted to the hospital with a head laceration. However, he’s expected to make a full recovery. (REPORT)
After crowd problems in the recent derby match with Borussia Dortmund, FC Schalke have given nearly 500 fans a five-year ban on coming to the stadium. (REPORT)
Similarly to Real Madrid’s Brazilian midfielder Casemiro, Willian José has signed with Real Madrid B from Santos with an aim at making the Real Madrid first team in the future. (REPORT)
Fulham have been linked as a transfer target of FC Porto and Belgium National Team midfielder Steven Defour. (REPORT)
What do you think of these reports? Do you agree with the FA’s decision to charge Anelka? Think that Cavani would want to move to Man United? Would Hernanes be the right signing for Inter Milan?
Share your thoughts below.