Photo by Neil Tingle/ISIphotos.com
By THOMAS FLOYD
Despite Aston Villa's best efforts, it appears Robbie Keane will head back to the Los Angeles Galaxy later this month — just as scheduled.
The Villans had hoped to tack another week onto Keane's loan after the Ireland international bagged three goals in his first four EPL appearances for the mid-table club. But Villa's bid for a loan extension was denied, meaning Keane will be slated to join the Galaxy's preseason preparations after a Feb. 25 match against Wigan.
The Galaxy open their campaign March 7 with the first leg of a CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal against Toronto FC at the Rogers Centre.
Here are some more stories to keep your Thursday going:
REDKNAPP HASN'T CONSIDERED ENGLAND JOB
Harry Redknapp may have landed the endorsements of Wayne Rooney and Rio Ferdinand, among others, to lead England at Euro 2012 after Fabio Capello abruptly resigned from his post, but the Tottenham manager said Thursday he "has not even thought" about the opening.
"I've got a job to do," Redknapp said. "I've got a big game on Saturday for Tottenham. Tottenham is my focus."
Newcastle boss Alan Pardew, meanwhile, ruled himself out of the race, saying, "I am very, very happy here at Newcastle. We are on a little project here that's going really well and I want to see it through."
BAYERN MUNICH SIGNS SHAQIRI
Bayern Munich has made a move to bolster its midfield corps going forward, completing a deal to sign Swiss international Xherdan Shaqiri from FC Basel. Shaqiri will join Bayern at the start of next season.
Shaqiri signed a four-year contract with Bayern after Basel accepted a reported $16 million transfer fee. The 20-year-old, who had been linked recently to Galatasaray and Manchester United, will face his future teammates when Basel takes on Bayern in the last 16 of the Champions League. The two legs are Feb. 26 and March 13.
JUVENTUS TOPS MILAN IN COPPA ITALIA
Martin Caceres notched a brace to lead Juventus to a 2-1 win at AC Milan on Wednesday in the first leg of the clubs' Coppa Italia semi-final, putting his side firmly in control heading into the return leg at home in March.
Caceres scored in the 53rd and 83rd minutes, sandwiching his tallies around a Stephan El Shaarawy strike in the 62nd minute. Siena and Napoli play the first leg of their semi-final later today.
Spurs need Harry now. If Rooney and Ferdinand are so quick to throw Harry’s hat in the ring, let them offer Ferguson instead.
Yeah, Joe, I can’t argue with any of that. I’d add that in the instance of Keane at Villa, Villa needs Keane more than AC Milan needed Beckham.
I have no idea what, if any, kind of fanfare surrounds Robbie Keane in Birmingham, but I know it’s nothing like that media circus that follows Beckham everywhere he goes. Apples and Oranges, obviously, but I recognize that Keane and Beckham present two disparate and unique commodities from a club perspective. Keane has a knack for scoring goals while Becks has a knack for selling shirts and tickets. Both are highly desirable commodities.
They are a quarterfinal/semifinal team with a good foreign coach. With an English coach they struggle to qualify.
The mistake england make over and over is thinking they can compete at a world class level.
Isn’t returning late Feb cutting it kind of close to prepare for the CCL games? It would nice if him, Donovan, and Bddle had more time together before the meaningful games start.
Gnarls, there’s a big difference between Keane and Beckham in the Galaxy’s universe (no pun intended). Beckham is a marketing force; Keane isn’t. Besides, Beckham essentially stated that he wanted to leave the Galaxy permanently early in his first stint w/AC Milan. Beckham’s statement prompted the ensuing conflict between MLS, the Galaxy and AC Milan.
Had Beckham left the Galaxy after his second season, AEG (the Galaxy’s owner) would have had all kinds of egg on its face and would have been ridiculed mercilessly. So would MLS.
I’m glad Arena put his foot down. Keano’s been a revelation at Villa, but all good things must end. Now let’s win us a CCL title.
LA learned its lesson, and your name illustrates your ignorance.
My bad, Adam. I totally forgot that Ives promised another Q&A by this Wednesday. Disregard my last post.
On the left are a list of categories. Click on “SBI Live Q&A” and you’ll see there was one rather recently. Cheers.
Ah… I misread the second paragraph above.
He’s not joining Bayern until the start of next season.
Just like LA did with AC Milan
Isn’t Shaqiri cup-tied for the remainder of the 2011-12 UCL?
So the English players want another English coach. The foreign coaches have fared much better for England. Isn’t making the same mistake over and over defined as insanity?
Thats how its done NY. Gotta take a stand on your players
Who in their right mind would want to take the England job now?
An irredeemably toxic press, a pool of players so desperately afraid of failure plus a fickle and easily manipulated fanbase. No wonder guys like Pardew are saying “I’m quite happy at my top-half premier league club thank you very much”
Ives whatever happened to the Q&A session you promised for this week?
That’s right. Gotta get him back for these CONCACAF matches. Galaxy look pretty stout overall for 2012.