Daily Sweeper, 12.14: Fun on the Rumor-go-Round…and it is fun, dammit

– Well, contrary to what was written in so many places earlier today (and on this site – wow – Wednesday; and the preceding ain’t a complete list, either) the deal to bring Juan Sebastian Veron to DC United is dead…for now. But I’d leave that last one in the big ol’, half-meaningless file titled, “Never say never.” Steve Goff has a bit of fun with readers in his autopsy report on the trade, but that misses the point. So…what’s the point? This is fun, dammit! This is the stuff daydreams are made of and, if nothing else, it gives us all something to talk about. What’s more wholesome than conversation ’round the ol’ virtual water-cooler? And, more to the point, figuring how and where a particular player fits in your team? That’s educational, man; it makes you think about how your team functions.

To be clear on this: I will shamelessly post rumors; I love the things. My policy on them boils down to rumor=good. I’ll mention the unconfirmed nature of what I’m passing on, but if you see MLS Rumors as my source, well, the title says it all. No sale is totally done till corporate – e.g. MLSnet.com – says it is. But don’t hide from rumors. They’re entertaining.

– Speaking of trade rumors, the Jared Borgetti to Kansas City Wizards/Colorado Rapids/Chicago Fire trade looks like it’ll go about as far in the end as the Veron thing did. Unlike Veron, however, I didn’t see much upside an a Borgetti deal. The man is 34 for crissakes. Yeah, I know. Blanco is about there too. Still.

3rd Degree had a decent piece today on player movement in and out of Big D. The “out” part of that seems the firmer: seems like they’re shopping Carlos Ruiz pretty widely, so I’m thinking they’re pretty serious about off-loading him. Also, check out where coach Steve Morrow is – and is not – going.

– Finally, seeing who Danny Califf selects as the three people he’d like to meet has grown my respect for the man. Sitting Bull, eh? Top-drawer.

OK, on to the Web junk now… Continue reading

EPL Daily 12.14: All things Capello; Derby/Coventry takeover?, etc.

Coventry and Derby are the latest English clubs to be pegged for an imminent takeover – Derby’s has an American feel however (an “American sports company”) and is still in critical stages. Whereas, Coventry has gone the Ray Ranson-led SISU Capital route (Ranson was responsible for a bid to takeover Man City early last year). With the takeover, which is now just subject to a 90% approval from all Coventry City shareholders, the Championship club saves themselves from administrative and competitive penalties. Also, West Ham is gearing up for yet another injection of capital as baldy Icelandic chairman Eggert Magnusson has relinquished his 5% stake in the Hammers to his Icelandic chum ‘BG’ – Bjorgolfur Gudmondsson – who plans to put another $60 million or so into the club (not player purchases persay).

Now – with the final verdict subject to contract negotiations (6.25 mill pounds/yr) – ALL of the controversy arises around the inevitable appointment of Italian Fabio Capello to the English manager’s position. Paul Parker at Eurosport says this confirms that England is now a ‘second-rate football nation’. Reading’s main man Steve Coppell, M’bro’s Gareth Southgate, former Arsenal defender Tony Adams don’t agree with the decision as well. Former English midfielder and MK Dons boss Paul Ince is pissed too. Got me thinking, were they this pissed when Sven Goran Eriksson took over? SoccerLens put together a list of 10 reasons why Fabio Capello IS a good choice.

If the head coach is Italian, does it balance it out if the majority of the coaching staff is British? Both Alan Shearer and current English U-21 gaffer Stuart Pearce have been tagged as potential number twos. Shearer to England seems a bit improbable as the former Newcastle striker turned down a chance to be assistant when McLaren took over.

Amidst all that, Chelsea’s new boss Avram Grant has just signed on for 4 more years. Pretty well done considering the Mourinho mess.

Nery Castillo – Mexico’s pride and joy at this past summer’s Copa America  and long-time Mexican Guiseppe Rossi – is already sick of Shakhtar (Ukraine) and is being linked to a loan deal with Sven Goran Eriksson’s Manchester City

One hell of a Sunday this weekend – Manchester United vs. Liverpool and Chelsea vs. Arsenal in the EPL. Ajax vs. PSV Eindhoven in the Dutch Eredivisie. Valencia vs. Barcelona in La Liga. Juventus vs. Lazio in the Serie A. Who prevails??