Good morning all. As I prepare for another full day of posts (and try to figure out how to deal with websites stealing SBI’s content and pawning it off as their own) I couldn’t help but realize that we are in a bit of a calm before a real storm of activity in the soccer world. It may be tough to believe but the European soccer season is just a month away, as are the Olympic games and U.S. World Cup qualifying. In other words, July is a time to relax a bit before August arrives to overwhelm us with great soccer.
Now, onto some news and notes from this morning and last night:
Arsenal completes Nasri transfer
Emmanuel Adebayor might still be out the door, but Arsenal took a step toward replacing Alexander Hleb on Friday by completing the signing of French starlet Samir Nasri from Olympique Marseille for a reported $24 million.
Nasri should help offset the departure of Hleb, but isn’t going to address the need for a replacement for Mathieu Flamini in central midfield. Nasri’s lightning fast moves and considerable skill will fit right into Arsenal’s speedy possession game, though it will be interesting to see how Nasri adjusts to the physicality of the EPL.
Fowler to Blackburn
Perhaps it was his performance in Chinatown a while back, or maybe it’s his track record as one of the most prolific goal-scorers in EPL history. Whatever the reason, Robbie Fowler is on his way back to the English Premier League after signing with Blackburn.
The 33-year-old Liverpool legend spent last season with Cardiff, but will join forces with another ’90s icon, new Blackburn manager Paul Ince, to try and keep Blackburn from plummeting out of the EPL after the departure of manager Mark Hughes to Manchester City.
Aussie club helping Croatia plunder Australia’s talent?
Now a disturbing story from ‘Down Under’. Australian soccer officials have become increasingly concerned with the role Australian club Sydney United is playing in helping funnel Australian talent to Croatia. It is an alarming situation that has already drawn the interest of FIFA officials.
Liverpool lands goalkeeper
Spanish goalkeeper Jose ‘Pepe’ Reina is one of the world’s best and now Liverpool has a talented youngster in place to be his understudy after signing Brazilian goalkeeper Diego Cavalieri from Palmeiras on Friday. It isn’t the signing of Robbie Keane, but a nice addition nonetheless.
Share your thoughts on these stories and any other developing stories in the soccer world in the comments section below.