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The Wednesday Kickoff

Good morning all. As the shopping days until Christmas wind down and we move closer to the New Year, this time of year is usually when news in the soccer world slows down. That wasn't the case on Tuesday.

Yes, you remember that slow Tuesday I talked about (and jinxed). We saw DaMarcus Beasley continuing his comeback, the LA Galaxy announcing that they would have a major announcement to make on Wednesday and a hot-shot college coach turned down a chance to coach the most successful club in MLS history.

Not bad for a slow day.

What awaits us on Wednesday? FC Barcelona kicks off its participation in the Club World Cup, an event that has lacked the buzz of previous years. Mexican side Atlante will look to pull the upset (11am, FSC). We have the Galaxy announcement, which is expected to include more than just Landon Donovan's loan to Everton. Just what might that be? In an ideal world the Galaxy would be announcing that Oguchi Onyewu was joining LA on loan from AC Milan to conduct his rehab and potentially play some matches for LA this spring before the World Cup, but that's just a pipe dream.

Wednesday has already offered its share of news items that should be of interest to American soccer fans. Here are a few:

Watford is facing bankruptcy, which just might facilitate a Jay DeMerit transfer sooner than expected. DeMerit raised his stock with last summer's Confederations Cup performance, but only recently returned from eye surgery so interest may not be as high as it was in August.

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Red Bulls coaching candidate Tony Adams looks to be heading elsewhere. Reports out of Europe are linking Adams to the recently-vacated St. Etienne job. If Adams is, in fact, heading to France, it would make him the second leading foreign Red Bulls coaching candidate to take a job in Europe. Remember the days when it was only European players, and not coaches, who parlayed interest from New York and MLS into new deals?

Sources tell me that new Red Bulls GM Erik Soler has some other Scandanavian coaches in mind as potential candidates, though the handful of MLS candidates remain in the running.

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David Beckham has come out and said he'd like to face Manchester Unitedin the Champions League when the Round of 16 draw is held on Friday. Beckham is set to join AC Milan on loan in January and Milan could be drawn against Manchester United. That potential match-up would not only draw serious TV ratings, it would be one of the better possible match-ups given Milan's recent renaissance.

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With Caleb Porter signed to a new five-year deal with Akron, folks in Indiana might be wondering who will be the next to coach the storied Indiana University soccer program. Sources tell me that University of Wisconsin head coach Todd Yeagley will be named Indiana's head coachat some point in the coming weeks. Yeagley is the son of legendary Indiana head coach Jerry Yeagley.

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All you hardcore EPL fans out there should appreciate this contribution from standout English journalist Henry Winter, who gives us his EPL Team of the Decade.

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It came to my attention on Tuesday that some SBI readers may still be unaware of the existence of SBI's Twitter page. We never really promoted it much, but since I have stepped up the Tweeting in recent weeks, you should definitely add SBI to the Tweets you follow. As always, you can see a live feed of all our Tweets on the right side of the SBI homepage.

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That's all for now. What do you think of the above stories? Would you like to see DeMerit make a January move? Running out of hope that New York will make a wise coaching hire? Hoping Beckham and Milan draw Manchester United?

Share your thoughts below.

Comments

  1. Barca’s title’s:

    – La Liga
    – UCL
    – Copa del Rey
    – Spanish Super Cup (usually the Liga winners vs the Copa del Rey winners but this year a Copa del Rey Final rematch seeing as how Barca won both) vs Atletico Bilbao
    – European Super Cup (UCL winners vs UEFA/Europa Cup winners) vs Shaktar Donetsk

    and…still in contention but by no means already won:

    – Club World Cup

    Reply
  2. Definitely Chelsea will win this year, just like they were going to in 2007, and Arsenal in 2008, and Liverpool in 2009. No wait, United won it all three years. And I do see your point about Barca, I just don’t think it’s a very good one. Anyone can throw IFs around. IF United had continued their good form this past weekend, they would have beaten Aston Villa and went level on points with Chelsea, but they didn’t. IF City could keep their good form after beating Chelsea, they could get to the next level possibly, but they tied Bolton the very next game. And United was competing for thier sixth title as well last season, so don’t get all high and mighty about it. And if Barca was really that good, I doubt they’d have had such a nervy CL group stage this season. And this isn’t a shot at you by any means, but what is the sixth title for Barca? I just don’t know the last one. I’m honestly curious…

    Reply
  3. Sure K-Bone, you’re right, as anything can happen in the world of football. That being said, my argument/point is simply that, IF Barca continue in the form that they have recently displayed, they will have a very good chance of winning matches against anyone. After all, they aren’t competing for their SIXTH!!!! title of the season for nothing. That all being said, I made the post right after watching the match, so I was riding quite high and feeling great about the team-I know that NO team is invincible, but this Barca side may be as close as you can get. And Chelsea will win the EPL this year, you can bet on that : )

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  4. I couldn’t agree more with your point about Henry and Neville. However, while Barcelona is certainly playing well, I don’t condone calling teams unstoppable. Seriously, I don’t think it’s far-fetched to think they could lose or tie a game in the very near future, thus negating the “can anyone stop barca” talk. What happens if they don’t win the World Championship? Your comment will be shot to hell in a week. People said the same thing about Chelsea about three weeks ago, and now look at them. If everyone could just refrain from the “Team A” is unbeatable and blah blah blah, and just recognize they are a great team, the world would be a better, and more reasonable, place. I’m a United fan, and I don’t speculate on their greatness status, because I understand the season is very long and many things can happen, and so does United, which is one of the reasons they’ve won the league 3 times in a row and two CL finals in two years…

    Reply

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